Monday, January 16, 2012

Time is a B


I would give anything for an extra five hours a day. I know that this is a creative thought. My apologies. I would have come up with something more clever, but...


I say that phrase so much that I bore myself.

I know that my plight is not unique, that all working mothers, heck, all parents, face this issue. But lately I am feeling ready to implode at any given moment.

Wednesday was particularly bad.

It'll all started two weeks ago when Justin told me he had a nighttime commitment at work. We were still in lazy, fantastic winter break dream world, so I didn't think much of it. Then I looked at my calendar...Em's first soccer class.


Em's class is at six, which deep-down I knew when I signed up for it was a bad idea, but it's only four classes so I thought we could at least try it. The issue is that Eliot is still going down for the count pretty early. He eats at 5:30, gets his bath, and is in bed by 7. So taking him to the class equated to flirting with disaster. Public disaster.

But I really had no choice, so I did it.

Wednesday started off with the usual rush to get the kids ready and out of the door by 6:45. At work, we had a baby shower for a friend, which was a fun start to the day. I can't really tell you what else happened. It was pretty much the usual madhouse. I told myself that I needed to leave work by 4:30 to get soccer clothes for Em, pick up the kids, get her something to eat, and get her to class by six.

I left work at 5.


This covers the hour between five and six, in which I was dangerously close to having a stroke/complete meltdown ala 3-year old/hair-eating session:

Pick up kids. Rush both into the car. Get Eliot into his new, not baby-bucket car seat (oh I miss that thing...). Drive to Target. Get soccer clothes, cat food, hair spray, all while speeding through the store, trying to avoid the SUPER SLOW PEOPLE who go to Target after work and trying to prevent my son from SUCKING ON THE CART BABY STRAP (oh, baby bucket, where are you now???) Change Em into soccer clothes in the bathroom of Target, while trying to prevent El from crawling on the floor (ICK).

The pants don't fit.

The mother-fing pants don't fit.

I try for 30 seconds (it's 5:30 at this point) to convince her that she can wear her jeans, to which she responds "EVERYONE WILL LOOK AT ME!!!"


So we go to the toddler boy section and get her boys pants. (Jeans aren't okay, but boy pants are?! Whatevs...)

We buy the pants, get her changed, and end up at the rec center at 5:55, driving behind the SLOWEST person ever.

We get the boy out of the seat, into the stroller; we get the diaper bag and mommy's purse and head to class.

The class is awesome. Em loves the class so much that all the sweating, silent swearing, panicking of the last hour is worth it. And I get totally cute video I can post to Facebook. (Yes, I am that person now.)

Then the class ends.

It's 6:45. A full hour and fifteen minutes after Eliot's typical dinner time.


So I get the kids in the car and head home. I feed Eliot and make Em's dinner. I bathe Eliot while she eats. I get Em's bath ready and do the nighttime ritual with Eliot. I get Em out of the bath, and we review her sight words.

At 8:30 Justin gets home and puts Em to bed.

At 8:30 I sit down.

At 8:30, I want to cry from exhaustion.

But I don't. Because it would be too tiring.

Don't get me wrong. I love my life. I love my work. It's perfect for me: always interesting, always exciting. I love my kids beyond belief.

The issue may be that I love everything too much. There's just too much to do. Always.

Luckily, I have days like today to counter balance those "Wednesdays" out there. This morning I took El to meet a friend for breakfast. I'm blogging right now while Em watches a movie, and I'll head into work for a little bit. I'm not bummed about that; I'll actually get some crap done.

Then I'll have a relaxing evening at home, which I am sure will entail some playing with Barbies, with some extracting god-knows-what from Eliot's mouth, and maybe some exercise.


Sunday, January 8, 2012

My Muffin Top Runneth Over

Brace yourselves. This is another blog about weight loss.

I cannot promise that this post will be a whole lot different than the probable 90,000 blogs about weight loss this month. But it comprises a lot of my energy right now, so here we go...

I had a baby almost 10 months ago. I was on a controlled diet. I got no candy. No potato chips. I had to watch my portions fanatically.

I gained sixty pounds.

I think.

I stopped looking when the scale reached 175.

I'm gonna blame it on water weight.

So after I had the baby (he was only 7 pounds...not sure about the other 53...), I gave myself a month to enjoy the things that I couldn't while pregnant. We're talking some real exciting stuff--cereal, lowfat ice cream, fruit. Go crazy.

Then I weighed myself to establish a starting point. I had 35 pounds to lose. Okay. I've done it before; I can do it again.

I started a moderate exercise program and watched what I ate. But with the exception of a couple pounds lost here and there, I've pretty much stayed the same. I think the most I lost was ten pounds (and honestly that was due to the flu...lovely weight loss plan, btw. No thank you.), and after the holidays, all the weight has returned.

It's time for me to face the facts.

No, my dryer did not shrink my clothes.

No, I am not just retaining water.

No, my scale is not broken.

I need to lose weight.


So I took the return to school as a return to health. While I do not necessarily make resolutions, I have decided to do a couple things. They are revolutionary.

1. Eat vegetables
2. Banning white wine from my house
3. Avoiding my boss's candy dish (It's more of a candy grand canyon...)
4. Trying to exercise

I did not do any of these things prior to winter break. Well, a couple of vegetables may have snuck in there but only because I'm responsible for 0% of the cooking in my home.

After week one, I'm pretty happy with myself. I brought veggies to work, and anytime I got "snacky", I avoided the candy canyon and ate vegetables. I can't say that I was entirely happy about it, but I dealt. I only exercised once, but I am willing to give myself some latitude on this front. Time is of the essence.

This weekend was the true test. I tend to go a little wacky with the extra calories, especially the liquid variety. To eliminate temptation, I gave up white wine for January. That stuff is crazy high in calories (but oh-so delicious.) I did have a beer on Friday and Saturday, but if I still seem to not be losing weight by next Friday, then I'll give that up too. The thing is that I can have just one beer; white wine...not so much.

So I'll keep you posted. We shall see...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 Wrap-Up

I'm not quite sure what has happened with me on the blogging front. Yes, I now have two kids and things here are CRAZY, but I still spend a fair amount of time on the good ole Internets.

But blog I have not.

Apparently, now I blog like Yoda. Whatevs.

So lots has happened since July. I've actually had several things I've wanted to blog about, but I can't seem to stay focused. Maybe ADHD comes with your second child.

Let me begin where we left off--July, specifically the end of July.

I decide to be super spontaneous in July and travel to Maryland. This was not as random as it sounds, as my sister and her husband spent most of the summer in Maryland. I'm not quite sure what came over me, but I decided to take advantage of the opportunity to travel to DC.

So Eliot, who was four months at the time, and I flew to Dulles Airport. The little guy was a super trooper and slept most of our red eye there. I did not. The most fun part of the trip was going to the bathroom. It was at some point in the middle of the night, and we hit a bad patch of turbulence. Eliot and I just hung out on the toilet until it was over. I'm really glad he can't remember this.

Once we actually got to Maryland, we had a great time. I haven't spent that much time with my sister in YEARS, and it was great to get to know my nephew better. We lugged the kids to a ton of really cool places--Capitol Hill, the White House, the Washington and Lincoln memorials, and the Smithsonian. It was amazing.

And hot, freaking hot. I'm a delicate California girl, and I have never experience humidity like that. Humid weather is particularly bad when you are hung over, as I discovered after an impromptu night-on-the-town with Haley. A new term has arisen from that experience, coined by my brother-in-law--"You're gonna Hay-lery it." It was fun, but we paid for it the next day.

After my trip to DC, it was back to work. Literally, the next day.

August was all about beginnings. I began my second year as a VP, but this time I was not pregnant. So.much.easier. Justin got his job back. Plus, this year he gets to teach AP English.

The biggest event was Emerson starting Kindergarten. To say I was nervous is a complete understatement. (It turns out some of my concerns are valid, but I will get to that later.)

There was some drama at first. Emerson got the teacher that I have been warned about, but I am real sensitive about not coming off like a blowhard administrator, so I didn't fight to get Em out of the class. I told myself to have an open mind.

Justin and I accompanied Emerson to her first day of school, did some silly activities, and got to know her teachers. I had some concerns, but it seemed that the teachers knew their stuff. Plus, Emerson is one of those kids who might not know she has a mean teacher. She can sort of just float about it all.

So Emerson started school. Sigh...

As September is every year, this year it was all about balance. Justin and I work wacky hours during the school year, and it can be exhausting. I think we struck a good balance this fall, but it was a lot of work.

First, Eliot started crawling at five months. The term crawling may be an exaggeration since it was more of a pulling himself around. But that little guy got around fast. This was a huge shock to his parents, who can be quite lazy about baby proofing. We didn't have to do it with Em because she didn't move until 11 months. Well, Eliot is bound and determined to give us a run for our money.

Second, Em's transition to Kindergarten was not as smooth as I hoped for. She seemed to like it okay, but preliminary assessments revealed that she didn't know everything she should. Her teachers reported that she got really frustrated very easily. Now, her mother also got frustrated because these reports were made to me only after I emailed the teachers to follow up on comments that Em made to me. For example, Em got put on time out, so I emailed to find out what happened. At that time, the teachers let me know that she was having trouble.

Which brings us to October...

October was all about Emerson. I started to feel a lot of anxiety about her school experience, which was heightened by the fact that her school is on a modified traditional schedule, so they do not have school from Thanksgiving to January 3rd. Ugh.

We had Em's first report card and parent teacher conference. I was a little shocked. I knew that she was not showing her teachers was she knows, but according to her teachers she is very behind. They marked the box on the report card that they may possibly retain her.

Not gonna happen.

So I got clearance from my boss to spend a day in the class room. And I did. Lucky for me, they did three art projects that day. And I was in charge of that one. Yikes.

Now, some kids would behave differently if they knew their parents were in the room. Mine...not so much. I know for a fact that she behaves exactly the same for me as she does for her teachers. This is not a positive thing by the way.

But I was super impressed by Emerson that day. She played well with others, participated fully, followed directions, and tried her best. And I got to spy and check out the other kids' work. Em is right smack dab in the middle of her class mates. So I felt better.

Kind of...

November and December
These two months are really a blur of long work days, holidays, and child care. Em ended school on November 18th, so we spent a lot of time working with her on her letters, numbers, words, and patience.

Thanksgiving we spent in Redding, and Christmas we spent at my mom's in Concord. I really enjoy having a son and having him experience everything with us. However, I do not enjoy the travel. After this holiday season, it has become clear that we need to rethink our holiday travel plans. It is simply too difficult to lug around two kids and all our crap to other people's houses. Justin and I are thinking of ways to make it a little easier. We still want to spend time with family, but we do need to streamline our holiday experiences. The idea of spending next Christmas in Disneyland has been discussed and I think that is a great idea--no present wrapping, no shopping, just fun.

Well, my brief quiet time is over. Eliot has woken up, and Emerson needs help finding something. I should probably consider taking a shower...