I adore this picture of Raegan and John....Raegan looks smashingly beautiful, and...drum roll...She's holding her baby brother! It's not that she's had any disdain for him, but she certainly had not been all that impressed, or interested. He grosses her out really - he's been drooling alot (I think he is starting the ridiculously long process of cutting teeth) and she's appalled. It's sooo funny. Recently, though, she's been wanting to rub his silky soft hair, and make him smile by talking to him about silly things.
He absolutely loves watching her and listening to her - they will love each other very much growing up, I can tell.
I am totally patting myself on the back for being so active with my postings this month!
I must say - what makes this month different than my past months (which were increasingly more consistent) are Three totally different things....
One) I've received some really good, fun feedback from old and new friends about my writing. And you guys know that I LOVE that. I mean like....I LOVE that. Thank you very much. It totally inspires me to keep writing.
Two) I've really been feeling the need for a creative outlet. I've discussed how I realized that a big part of me misses working - and not just any job - a job that I would enjoy. Sales is very creative. I loved that aspect - I loved designing and writing Marketing Collateral. I am good at it. So, until something perfect comes along on the job front, I will have some pent up creative energy - writing is a GREAT outlet for that!!
I am hoping to keep up the writing going forward, and find a balance between Gaming and Writing. I enjoy them both. I am going to go one more week sans the pew pew - and then reactivate the account for a month. I really do miss my gaming friends. A Lot.
But...also enjoy connecting better with my 'Real Life' friends and acquaintances, through my own, little corner of the Internet.
Poor Baby John has a cold. Nothing to be overly concerned about - no fever, clear snot (yum, I know. Sorry, for the grossness!). He's also been drooling a lot, which makes me wonder if he is starting to teethe a little bit. He IS three months old, and babies teethe for a longggggg time, before the tooth breaks through.
Anyways, I've been having to do one of my LEAST favorite jobs ever as a parent - and that's to suck the all the congestion out so Baby John can breathe better. You have to do it! But, its SO gross, in my honest opinion... It makes me nervous, because hello, I'm sticking up something up his nose! And he is squirmy and obviously not down with this idea. Helloooo...this cannot be comfortable. It could go to his brain you know!
Seriously, it creeps me out a little, even after four kids.
But, I suck it up..and do it.....Tee Hee.
(Nice one, me!)
Here is how to do it btw - I didn't need any saline solution though, but that just makes it that much MORE fun, let me tell you..... ; )
There is not much you can do for babies with colds - no cold meds, and he doesn't need a fever reducer (he has no fever!) or a pain reliever. Basically, You suck their lil noses out with the torture device, you can let them lay at slight incline, and you can cuddle them.
I only have three of my kiddies tonight - Jakob, Raegan and Baby John. Abby is spending the night with some of her good girlie friends.
It's so funny how having three kids is a "Break"!
It sooooo is though!
AND - On top of that - I need to thank whoever pushed the EZ-MODE button tonight - because Raegan is Sleeping, John is Sleeping and Jake is watching a movie.
I needed a break today, too.
It was just one of those mornings. Wilo forgot I needed coffee so I had to wake up caffiene free - so lame! (shhh...I am a caffiene JUNKIE). Then, I was also out of instantly gratifing (think: poptarts!) or easily made (think: cereal) breakfast foods - so I had to wake up to actually MAKING breakfast (think: pancakes). I love to cook breakfast if I choose to do it - not if I have to do it. With No Caffiene. And kids reminding you that they are STARVING every 3 minutes.
Then, I wanted to get started on cleaning, and I wanted every set of able hands to help. Mind you, I don't live in a HUGE house, I don't even live in a BIG house. With 10 hands - work should go so quickly.
IN EFFING THEORY.
It was just a headache and hassel, and put me in a pissy mood. One of those moods where everything starts to irritate you. Stressed me out. See...
The thread went on with different Mommies commenting - and the point was made that the Grass is always greener on the otherside - Staying home is incredibly hard, but working isn't any easier. My friends were right - it always DOES seem greener on the other side.
Mothering, Wife-ing (not. a. word.), LIFE - is stressful sometimes no matter who you are, you know?
Thankfully, I got over the first part of the day by ways of a hot shower, a visit with my neighbor, a visit with my BFF and a nice chat with another neighbor friend. I was thankful for the social interaction, and the peaceful kiddies. And Coffee, And Internet.
Anyways, very thankful for the relaxing evening!
Hope you are relaxing this Saturday evening, too ; )
(p.s. Blogging on a Saturday Night = total hotness, btw.....hehehe)
I am very fortunate to have a few girls, that no matter what - time, distance, circumstance, babies, marriages, divorces, break ups, hurricanes, tornadoes, hurt feelings, what have you - are still very dear to me.
I just finished a conversation with one of the most special girls I've ever met, and ever known. I've known her since I was barely 19, and have not been in contact with her for the past couple years... (see above about time and distance and blah blah blah).
I still love her as much as I would if I was lucky enough to see her daily.
Friendships that can pick up after they leave off - with out any hesitation - are very special.
They are Forever Friendships, and I'm very thankful to have a few.
I mentioned in an earlier update that I was working on a couple of posts - and despite the fact that I've been blogging often lately - I haven't finished any of the posts I mentioned. If you could see the number of posts I have started and not finished - it would probably make you itch, or laugh at how creatively scatterbrained I can be, or prescribe me Ritalin for my apparent ADD. And, although I have no real obligation to post any of them, I mentioned these publicly, so in my mess of a mind, I totally DO have a commitment to finish them!
I mean, helloooo, how could you get through the rest of the week, without reading what I had to say about weight loss, anxiety and men?!
You all are most welcome, I KNOW you've been dying in anticipation.
Let's start with the heavy stuff first..... Weight loss.
I lost 60lbs in about 8 months with out going on a “diet”. I cut out all fast food, regular soda, and became much, much, much, more active outside.
For Serious. That's quite a bit of weight I lost - two years ago. Did you catch that? TWO YEARS AGO. I had no intention of having to lose weight againthis soon, yet here I am. I don't have quite the 60lbs, but I do have about 25 pesky pounds still hanging around from my nine month indulgence, called "growing a human".
It was easier to lose weight in 2008 (after Raegan) because my eating and activity habits were generally poor. I was working at a full service hotel - as a Sales Manager - and even though I was on the go, there was a lot of sitting at my desk, sitting in my car, sitting in my clients office. LOTS of eating breakfast, lunch and dinner at the Fine Dining restaurant with my clients or fast food with my coworkers, as well as a Starbucks on site. It was an appetite (ha!) for disaster - and it certainly was detrimental to my non shrinking waistline.
I came home full time to care for a newly turned One Year Old little girl who kept my feet moving from the moment we woke up. She loved being outside and so did I. We were outside, somewhere, every day. The heavy lunches, the fast food runs, the rich dinners were all eliminiated - in place of those were fresh, natural, economic meals. I gave up my daily Carmel Macchiato - and turned my Coca- Cola Classic into Diet Coke. I basically watched the weight drop off.
I ended up at 135 lbs, and a size 9/10....(EVEN a size 8 in some things).
It. Was. Awesome.
(Don't hate, keep reading!)
I was able to maintain that weight loss for sometime too; It wasn't temporary because I had actually changed my lifestyle.
Now, fast forward to post baby John prego.
It's not been...so ridiculously and wonderfully effortless simple. I don't have those things to eliminate this time. My lifestyle is pretty much the same - we eat healthy things, and eat fast food very seldom. I don't visit my boyfriends at Starbucks for daily quickies anymore, and while I still drink soda, I am cautious of how much I drink.
I'm bright enough to realize - if it's not the food that is the culprit, then I should probably investigate the second part to healthy living and weight loss. Something along the lines of...wait...what is it called? Give me a second, I've heard of it before...oh yeah..
I'm talking about REAL, I-have-to-sweat, make my muscles work, lift weights, do sit ups kinda Exercise...Not just me hiking through the woods exercise (which it totally is, btw!). I'm talking about actual, diligent, targeted, focused........Working Out. I wish I could define what exactly that entails for you, but I cannot, because I have no flippin' clue. My brother J and my sister A (who are both very athletic) have lovingly teased me about having never truly 'worked out' in my life....
And.......They are correct.
I've never even stepped foot into a gym, or spent one cent on an exercise program. I've always stayed thin by watching what I eat and walking a lot.
But...this time....I think I might have to tough up, and lose my working out virginity.
I do not see any other way to revisit those lovely single digit jeans.
The quiet, still moments of early morning - where it is just me awake - the kids still snuggled in their beds, the coffee's brewing, the news is playing in the background, the days laundry is started...the lights are still dim - I tip toe around wanting to savor the quiet for just a few more minutes, watching the clock in anticipation - soon I will start waking up children to get ready for school.
These unspoken moments of quiet and solitude, make me feel like a mom.
Last Friday, Jakob found himself in BIG trouble with a grumpy mama.
He had darted in after school and said, "MOM! I'm gonna go ride bikes with Ethan (his bff), Can I please take your camera?"
I, of course, said NO to the camera, and YES to the bikes.
Sorry, man, the camera is MINE, yo! And you are TEN! And a BOY!
Well, Jake decided not to listen about the camera and got busted courtesy of his little sister, Abby. (Lil sisters are sooo good for that, no?)
I was grumpy and he was grounded.
I was going thru my camera today and came across the videos he made. They were mostly of bike 'tricks'. While he most definitely should have been disciplined for disobeying me (and he was), I can't help but to be thankful for what he captured.
There will be a day, when my home is empty, and he is grown, that I will long to hear this sound.
Quickly - 'cause I've got stuff to do and people to care for....
I have a handful of devotions that come to my inbox. I weed them out often, I get overwhelmed if I have too many to read, and lose the meaning trying to read all of them. There are a few that I've had for years, that I read every day. This series is one of them.
I thought it was most appropriate for me, and this week.
Completing the Work
By Os Hillman September 17
"I have brought You glory on earth by completing the work You gave Me to do" (John 17:4).
Have you ever had a big project to do and felt great when you'd finished the job and it was a big success? Angie worked on a big project in the 1996 Olympics which involved placing 2000 family members of foreign athletes into Christian homes. It was a massive project, but it was a rewarding experience to see the job completed.
The Lord has revealed to us that the number one thing we are to do is love the Lord our God with all our heart and to love our neighbor as ourselves. His desire is for us to know Him and the power of His resurrection. These mandates deal with our relationship with Him. The fruit of this relationship must then result in our glorifying Him by completing the work He has given each of us to do. It will become a by-product of this relationship, not an end in itself.
What is the work God has called you to do? Jesus never did anything the Father had not instructed Him to do. He lived in such communion with the Father that He knew when to turn left and when to turn to the right. Is it possible to have such a relationship with our heavenly Father? I think that if it weren't, He would not have given us such an example.
"Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know" (Jer. 33:3). What has He called you to do? Perhaps you are called to be the best lawyer in your city or the best advertising executive or the best office worker or assembly line person in your company. Whatever work He has called you to, He will use you as His instrument to accomplish something that He has uniquely prepared you to do.
When our life is complete, what a glorious day it will be if we can each say, "I have completed the work You gave me to do." This will have brought great glory to Him.
My big kids are a little competitive, and I have no idea where in the world that comes from.
HA! They come by it honest.
It's funny when and where this competitiveness manifests itself - sometimes its during cleaning time...(I bet I can finish before you, GO!) or regarding school...(I bet I'll get a better grade on my spelling!)...or about something completely trivial....(I can totally stand here on my head, while saying my ABC's, backwards, for longer than you!).
Most recently, it's centered around their 'lovey' blankets from their baby days. When they were little, my mother made each of them, these lovely fleece blankets, edged with satin. Both kids took to them personally and loved them dearly. They eventually grew out of the need to cuddle with them, as all kids do. I, of course, kept them, and they've been staples around my house since.
A few weeks back - Jake decided he would like to pass on his beloved 'lovey' to baby John. John took to this blanket instantly and loves it. It's VERY sweet (and a little surreal to hold quatro, wrapped up in Uno's blankie). That's all good, except...Abby wants to see John wrapped up in hers!
I caught Abby talking with John the other night, about all of the things that make her blankie better than Jake's. (She's quite the sales person!) "Look at allllll the colors John!"..."See how it fits you better?" "Smell it, it smells like me, not a dirty boy!".
So, I try to give John equal time with each blankie, and never the less, the opposing blanket sneaks its way into the bassinet, stroller, bouncy chair...etc....
It's pretty amusing, and wicked adorable.
p.s. Abby's is the tie dye, and Jake's is the Teddy Bears.
While the thought of a fancy job was enticing and exciting, and I meant everything I said - there is something equally delightful about being able to spend a deliciously rainy morning cuddling with my coffee and my Rae Rae.
p.s. yeah, still not even a 'nod' on my dream job - it's ok. It's more a blow to my ego than anything, as I mentioned I've never not been considered. Welcome to life, Melissa, right? I think today, I'm gonna spend time thanking God for being all knowing, loving and powerful - obviously, there is a reason. Maybe I'm gonna have something even more perfect knock at my door, or maybe he's gonna show his love to me in ways I can't even imagine, resulting in absolute fulfillment and awe.
At nearly 11 weeks old Baby John is 14.8 lbs and 25 1/2 inches long!
( I totally guessed his weight by the way! Spot on, Mommy!)
He's in the 83 percentile on this weight, and 95 percentile on his height....
His shots were painful and many. He had FOUR done today. FOUR.
(Get it - quatro for quatro? hehehe)
I totally teared up as I watched him suffer for a minute. He seems to be doing ok, post immunization. I haven't had to give him any Tylenol or Motrin yet - he's just been verrrrrry sleepy, which was to be expected. He's woken up to eat a little bit a couple times, so I'm just letting him sleep as much as he wants. Every baby handles shots differently - and I'm totally down with dealing with sleep as the aftermath, compared to the fussy alternatives.
I have recommendations from the company that this position services, but this is a contract postion, so that said company, doesn't do the hiring. I'd feel much more confident if that were the case.
I've never applied for a job - or submitted my resume - and not generated enough interest to warrant at least a conversation. So, this is new for me....
Boo hoo, Meli, I know....but it's the truth!
It's ME! I'm awesome, dynamic and talented! How could you not at least wanna chat with me?!
I so wish I was joking, but I honestly feel that way. You can call me narcissistic, it's ok. Wilo does all the time.
I keep thinking, maybe I should rework my resume and tailor it to the specific position (which is prolly a good idea) and send it directly to her, but then I'm like..."Melissa...are you trying to push something that isn't meant to be? You gave this whole thing to God, and said you were gonna trust Him..." It's easier said than done sometimes.
And yes, I totally speak to myself. In third person. Then write about it.
Baby John has a Dr's Appointment today - and I am soooo not looking forward to it. I mean, I'm anxious to see if I am right on with his weight (I say 14lbs!) and hear that all looks to be on par with where he should be, but...I am dreading his shots.
I've cried with each of my children - witnessing someones first experience with pain is very...PAINFUL!
I have gone back and forth as to whether or not I actually support so many immunizations - and for the most part, I do - but I do think that we almost over immunize just like we over medicate ( um..a chicken pox vaccine? Realllllly?).
There has been much debate as to whether or not shots can result in triggering Autism - That's scary! Although that is not confirmed by many doctors - it IS confirmed by many mothers.
There are some things as a parent, that never become easier.....watching your baby be poked by needles is definitely one of them.
Have you ever wanted something so badly that it actually hurts? At the same time, the mere thought of it makes your heart explode with sheer excitement? Mixed with the impending disappointment should it not come to pass?
That's how I feel RIGHT NOW.
I've briefly mentioned to you that I've recently been missing working - it's not that I am not eternally grateful for the opportunity to be a Stay at Home mom because I AM. It was undoubtedly where I needed to be for the past two years. It's just that I've been feeling a little....unfulfilled.
So, I've been on a leisurely prowl for something that would suit my need to be satisfied as a professional, yet compliment my need to remain active and connected with my family. I've seen various positions open in the area that would meet my qualifications, but none of them really stood out and grabbed my genuine interest, or met the demands of my schedule...(hellooo, I have to be home when my kiddies get off the bus!)....Until this past Saturday.
I was checking my normal 'job' sites - and saw something that would meet alllllllllllll my needs, and would leave me very exicted, motivated, and driven to succeed. All of my skills, background, and interest are rolled up into one dynamic, irresistible, PERFECT, position.
As a result, I did something that I haven't done in two years. I updated my resume, expressed interest in this position, and sent it off.
Just the thought of having this job has brought back an energy that I have not felt in a very long time. I love feeling motivated to prove that I can excel - success on a stellar level. I like thinking about contributing my talents to something that is different from the day to day of my home and my children. I like remembering how I truly enjoyed many of my previous positions. I like reminiscing on how empowering it feels to contribute financially to my family - and how by working and having some of my energies focused professionally allowed me to find joy in the nuances of my children, the same ones that drive me crazy, now.
I want a shot at this job so, so, sooooooooooooo badly.
But, I am also confident and grounded enough to know that if it does not come to pass, it simply was not in God's plan for me. If that's the case, then maybe He has something bigger and brighter in my future. That being said, I know I will feel a bit of disappointment should it not all work out.
If nothing more, this just confirms that I certainly want to feel all of those things again, and that I most definitely want to go back to work in a position that would make me happy.
This is a post from an old blog of mine from 2008....I could probably come up with 25 more things, but I really liked this one - so, I'm sharing it in 2010....
I grew up swearing that I was never ever ever having children and I wasn’t planning on getting married.
Yeah, God saw my life differently :) I was married at 19 and had two kids by 21.
I think women who chose to have their labors naturally and with out any drugs are completely insane. Beautiful? NO. Painful? YES!. Meet me in the parking lot with the epidural, thank you.
I - Miss Conservative - think pot should be legal and believe in its medicinal value, but won’t be one of the pot friendly parents who let kids smoke. Do as I say, not as I did!
I can tie a cherry stem in a knot in my mouth.
I met my BFF on the short bus!!! For real!! We were freshman (when G-port had a freshman building) and we took a theatre class at the high school campus. The bus they used to shuttle us was a short bus. FUNNY now. Oh so funny. We are teased about still needing to ride it.
I have a really hard time connecting with women - but once a connection has been made, I am extremely loyal and giving. Girls are mean sometimes!
I can type over 100wpm.
I’m scared of storms if I am alone. If I have someone else around, I love them and think they are exciting.
My first kiss was on a plane to Europe. Not tooo classy I must say, but very adventurous.
I don’t watch horror movies because I don’t like being scared. I will even leave the room when some of the previews come on because even those scare me.
I lost 60lbs in about 8 months with out going on a “diet”. I cut out all fast food, regular soda, and became much, much, much, more active outside.
I don’t want to lose anymore weight for a couple reasons – I wouldn’t have any clothes to wear and I would miss my boobs.
I am a great kisser and would immediately dump you if I didn’t like the way you kissed. Hahahah. Bitch? NO. Really high smooching standards? YES!
My daughter Abby is dancing in the hallway like an Indian as I type this, Reagan is in her diaper with her cuppy dancing on my bed, and Jakob is arguing with me about logging on to warcraft.
I’m not Wilo’s dream girl, and I’m ok with that. Wil’s dream girl is a red head, has freakishly large ta-tas and looks like Katie Couric and can stay awake during any movie. She will be knowledgeable about Zelda, and could possibly sing. She also will be able to quote random lines from said movies, and relate everything to a Captian Kirk line. She will also be tall.
I met my dream guy once but he didn’t feel the same way.
I was able to travel England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales as a teen. That’s where my mom says it all went wrong. I gained a true sense of self and independence.
I spent too much of my time on that trip worrying about a cute boy tho. Typical.
I love music and it speaks to me in soooo many ways.
I would like to own a cheerleading uniform now that I am skinny. I wouldn’t wear it in public, but I would totally rock it randomly at home. I think it’s silly and fun. Wilo thinks that’s creepy. Alas, my girls do not, as we will be taking a trip to the costume shop to try on various items…Save the Cheerleader, Save the world.
My brain doesn’t process paper information – I find paper to be overwhelming. 100% of my day to day is on the pc. 100% of the paper that comes in the mail is ….um I couldn’t tell you. Try a drawer. Or on top of the fridge. Or in the fridge. Paper creeeeps me out.
I am totally unimpressed by people or things. Money means nothing to me. It really doesn’t. The brand you wear or the car you drive…yeah, I prolly wont notice them. And if you point it out to me, I will just roll my eyes to you. I mean it.
I am impressed by kindness, humor, acceptance and genuine people.
My idea of a great date is – Good beer (like Guinness, Harp, Bass, NewCastle, Sam Adams) and a day in the woods. For real. That’s my style.
I mentioned Raegan is computer savvy. At three years old, I'm routinely impressed. This was a big deal this week - she sat down and started playing with no help from me. I typically get her online and then set her free on her favorite websites. This time she did it on her own...I was surprised! So much so, that I made her show me again.
I haven't posted because I've been busy recovering from a broken ankle and back spasms from doing numerous back handsprings on the way home from the bus stop on the first day of school.
Kidding, of course. My cheerleader days are longgggg gone. I don't think I could do one cartwheel at this point at my life with out hurting myself. I can yell loudly, smile and look cute, though!
We have successfully completed two weeks of school, and are currently enjoying the long, beautiful, fall like holiday weekend. The kids seem to be adjusting well to their new classes - though we are still struggling to stay on task with homework in the evenings. We finish it but it takes so much longer than needed which is extremely frustrating.
It's awesome to be home with just Raegan and John during the day. It's very relaxing. We have a really laid back morning where John and Wilo sleep while Raegan and I have breakfast, pick up and play time.
Part of our current play - is on the computers. She is incredibly savvy. We've been pretty generous with computer time with all of our children. But Raegan, she's the only one who's had access to a computer her entire life. She can play nearly any game on pbskids.org or nickjr.com with little help. Those two sites are well worth my Internet bill every month. You should check them out if you have a toddler - you'd be surprised how quickly little children master basic navigation skills...and all of the content is educational though presented in a fun, entertaining, involving manner.
Baby John is a smiling, happy baby, per usual! He has a bit of a cold - Raegan had a bit of it last week too. But you couldn't tell by the way he acts. I am so hooked on that baby.
Other than school, kids, homework, and baby..I've been spending my personal time playing WoW more - which I care to elaborate on in a later post. I'm actually working on a few posts currently - so stay tuned to hear about me finding my baby weight loss motivation - cause I've been lacking it! Men - because they are lacking in general! (Sorry boys, too many of you have been the topic of negative conversations with my girls lately!) and my anxiety (sadly, that's not been lacking.)