Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Farewell September

September is always a challenging month.  Summer hours end at work, we're still adjusting to A being back at school, work seems extra hectic.  The 13th of September is the anniversary of my dad passing away and I'm always a little sad around that time as I reminisce.  This September was no exception.  Throw in W's difficult transition to preschool and my colleagues traveling to Dublin (a trip that I very much wanted to be a part of) and I've just been down lately.

I've said it before and I'll say it again... I'm so so thankful for our jobs and grateful that our moms are able and willing to watch the boys.  I know we are incredibly blessed in so many ways.  But even with great jobs and amazingly helpful moms, that doesn't mean that some days aren't more challenging than others.

September just seems to be a month of transition and change.  Two things I've never handled very well (and neither does W apparently).

But then yesterday happened.

My boss called me into her office.  I assumed she was just going to ask a question about the software system that I oversee.  But instead, she said she had great news.  Turns out I was given a raise.  She felt I was doing more work than my title and job description reflected and she wanted me to be compensated accordingly.  What?!?  I was shocked.  So needless to say, that was awesome news.  And perfect timing since our property taxes just increased... grr.

And today, W had a great day at school!  He only cried for 5 minutes!!  That's huge for him.  He played trains and when I arrived to pick him up, he was playing ring around the rosie with his teacher and other children.  So cute!  And he was enjoying it!!  We've had such a rough go of it.  So many tears; I'm spending way too much time at school and having to play catch up on work when I arrive home.  It's been incredibly stressful.  So much so that I was ready to quit preschool last week.  This is such a relief.  So grateful.

Happy that September is ending on a positive note.  Bring on October!! :D

Monday, September 28, 2015

Weekend Recap

Another busy weekend.  We’re getting in as many walks and as much outside time as possible before the weather turns cold.

My favorite mummies

Saturday, I took W to get a haircut.  Afterwards, we went grocery shopping and picked up some lunch.  It’s become our routine to run errands together on Saturdays.  I think we both enjoy each other’s company and S gets some one on one time with dad.  It works out well.  W has turned into such a chatterbox.  He talks the entire time we’re out.  “That man got a band aid… he has a boo boo.” “What does a alien say?” “Those trees in the way; I can’t see…” Everything he thinks, he says.  I spend half the time laughing and the other half trying to think of interesting responses to give… “Uhhhh… well, some aliens probably talk just like people do…?”  Proceeds to laugh… “Aliens don’t talk, mommy!”

Anyway, after lunch, A and I took the boys to another local pumpkin farm.  We all had so much fun.  W loved the animals and I enjoyed learning about them… Did you know all goats have horns??  We’ll definitely return for a hay ride and pumpkins.

Penny the goat was 3 weeks old - so cute!!

Roy the Rooster

Sunday was church and Starbucks and then an annoying undertaking trying to purchase a car seat.  I learned that Babies R Us has pretty crappy customer service (or maybe just a pretty crappy employee), but 3!! Hours and 2 stores later, we had a new car seat.  Sigh.  The remainder of the day was spent making soup, cleaning up a bit, and watching football and baseball very intermittently.  W was worn out and put himself to bed at 8… score!  Given the 3 hour car seat fiasco, S’s schedule was really messed up so he got to watch the lunar eclipse with mom and dad at 9.  All in all, a great weekend.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Stitch Fix #3 Reveal

I received my third Stitch Fix over the weekend and it did not disappoint!  Per usual, my mom came over and helped me decide what to keep.  A also provided his input.  In the note to my stylist, I mentioned that I had pinned lots of styles I liked.  I could definitely tell that she had consulted my Pinterest board.  I love that each item sent was completely different and unlike anything I already had in my closet.  I even took real photos!!!  Holy moly!  Too bad I never stood in the same spot so the top of my head is cut off in some photos and my feet are cut off in all of them… oopsies.  And I probably chose the worst spot in the house for photos.  It’s clearly a work in progress.

First up – the Tracy Dot Print Cross Back Knit Top.  That’s a mouth full of a description.  I thought the dots were cute and the crisscross in the back (which you can’t see – sorry) gave this top a little something extra.

Next – the Kathy Striped Fit and Flare Dress.  This was super flattering.  It made my waist really tiny – after 2 babies (including one 10 pounder), anything that makes my waist look tiny is a keeper!  I think this would be really cute with a jean jacket for fall.  I think I got rid of my jean jackets so hoping to find a cute cardigan to pair with it.  I need to experiment.

I then tried on the Fetra Scoop Neck Blouse and Dayna Skinny Jean.  First of all the blouse is a Daniel Rainn blouse and anything from Daniel Rainn is an automatic keeper for me.  I LOVED it.  And the jeans were so fun.  I don’t have any colored jeans.  These fit like a glove and were super soft.  Also, I thought I could get away with wearing them to work because they didn’t scream denim.  Love and love.  I’m actually wearing this outfit today.

Finally, the Amari Jacket.  This was a tad big on me, but I thought it was really cute and the striped sleeves added something unique.  I’m wearing it with the red jeans in the picture and I think it would look much better with dark denim, but you get the idea.

So when I was done trying everything on, I asked my mom and A what they thought I should keep.  It was unanimous – EVERYTHING.  The awesome perk with Stitch Fix is that if you keep everything, you get 25% off.  So I kept it all and I’ve already worn three of the five items.  Super impressed with this Stitch Fix!! J

Monday, September 21, 2015

Weekend Recap

I don't have a whole lot to say about this weekend.  We only had one thing planned and that didn't happen - ha!

Saturday consisted of trying on clothes.  Yup, it was time to clean out my closet.  Exciting stuff.  Not really, but it was nice to get rid of items I wasn't wearing.  It was also nice to find out ALL my jeans fit.  YES!!  High five!!  I got my third Stitch Fix so my mom and A helped me decide what to keep.  More on that in an upcoming post.  We were supposed to attend a picnic at W's school later in the afternoon.  Of course we left the house late and thought the school would have picnic tables to sit at.  When we arrived, there were no picnic tables.  So we turned around to head back to the house and grab a blanket and in that time, W fell asleep.  At this point, the picnic was half over and waking W seemed to be a bad choice.  I was super disappointed.  For one, I thought the picnic would be something POSITIVE about school.  Something fun.  For two, I hate committing to something and not fulfilling that commitment.  For three, I was mad at myself.  I had asked A if I should bring a blanket and he told me he thought there would be tables (they had had them at previous events).  I should've thrown a blanket in the car just in case.  Uggh.  So that was disappointing.

Sunday was church and Starbucks.  The boys wore sweaters to church and looked adorable.  Oh how I love fall (I know it technically is NOT fall, but close enough).  Then we watched the Bears lose, played outside, and I made buffalo chicken enchiladas for dinner... yum!  So we ended the weekend on a high note (except for the Bears loss). :)

Oh, and the boys slept well - woohoo!  Totally just jinxed myself I'm sure.  I really needed sleep after last week.  I'm fairly certain that S's sleep woes are the result of a sleep regression.  Lot of learning lately - starting to pick up foods to eat and attempting to crawl.  He also transitioned from 3 naps to 2 recently.  So lots going on for this guy.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Friday Thoughts

S has not been sleeping well lately.  He’s been waking at multiple times during the night and I’m not sure why.  Yesterday, we tried keeping him up a little later thinking that might help.  Nope.  We did have a thunderstorm come through, but still.  Last night looked something like this:

8:30pm – S goes to bed
9 – W goes to bed
12ish – S wakes up (thunderstorm)
12:30ish – W wakes up
2ish – I wake up again
3ish – S wakes again
From 3-4, feed S and try to get him back into crib.  He cries each time he’s placed in crib.  Finally I have success.
5:15 – wake up to alarm
5:45am – W up for the day
6:30am – S up for the day

I have no idea what’s going on.  S has always been a good sleeper until recently.  Teething?  Sleep regression?  No clue.  But A and I are both sooo tired.

I’ve been really down this week.  A few colleagues traveled to Ireland.  Number one on my list of places to visit.  I was not invited and that was disappointing.  But the thing that really gets me – my boss invited the colleague who happens to be her very good friend.  And her sister, who also knows my colleague, joined in on the trip.  That’s confusing.  The point is, it seems a bit shady to travel with friends on a work trip.  I feel like there were other people who were more deserving and should have been included.  Also very shady, colleague’s boss didn’t even know she was attending this work trip.  If your own boss doesn’t know where you are, something is wrong.  So yeah, I’m bitter and annoyed.

Preschool wasn’t a complete disaster yesterday.  I’m seeing (small) glimmers of hope.

Did I mention how tired I am?? :P

Work has been crazy lately.  Please slow down a bit.

It seems like everyone in the world is pregnant all of a sudden.  Every other day, I'm seeing a pregnancy announcement.  Even with two amazing boys, I get a pang of sadness each time I see one - each one a reminder that we can't conceive without help.  But that in no way means I'm not happy for those who are having babies. #itscomplicated

My third stitch fix is set to arrive tomorrow.  Very excited!!  Per usual, I think my mom is coming over to check things out with me.

My favorite outfit this week.  The top is new and already one of my most favorite articles of clothing.  Love the bright colors and pattern.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Baby S is 7 Months Old

I'm way late on S's 7 month post.  I actually wrote it at 7 months, but never published it here.  Without further ado...

Dear S,
You are 7 months old today, my sweet boy. With daddy returning to school, W starting preschool, and the family trying to squeeze in last minute summer activities, this past month is a blur. We’ve been busy and so have you. Learning and growing at lightning speed.
This month, you started sitting up really well. You were sitting up at 6 months, but wobbly. Now, you’re a pro. The bouncy seats and Mamaroo have officially been retired. You’re a man on the move and have no time for those stationary items. I have to admit, putting away the newborn baby gear makes my mommy heart sad. We’ve also slowly begun to give you actual people food. We started with pancakes. You can pick them up and put them in your mouth, but then you appear a little confused. You seem to be in such a hurry to grow up. You love to stand, walk, and jump (all with help of course). Really, I think you just want to be able to play with big brother.
Speaking of your brother, you’re happiest when you’re near W. He can still be feisty with you, but he can also be really sweet – asking to hold you and yelling, “Baby S, you are the BEST!!”. I have no doubt that you two will share a special bond. I already see it… W does something naughty like launch a ball across the room, or yell, or jump on the bed. You find these actions hysterical and will burst into a fit of laughter. It’s nearly impossible to enforce a time out when you’re cracking up. I see that you’re both already teaming up.
You weigh about 22lbs (the same as your brother weighed at 10 months!). You’re wearing size 6-12 months in clothes, but could probably fit into 12-18 months. You love being outside and you’re definitely a people person. You are also, without a doubt, daddy’s boy. You light up when you see him and love to be held by daddy. No teeth for you yet. You’ve started to love the Jumparoo and Exersaucer as long as you aren’t left in a room alone. Unfortunately you don’t seem to like books. Hoping this changes. We have quite a few nicknames for you: Bam Bam (W is Boo Boo), Little Red (W is Big Red), Little Man S.
Looking forward to the month ahead. You are our everything and more, S.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Weekend Recap

Not a lot to report about this past weekend.  A suggested meeting for dinner on Friday.  My response – with the boys?!?  In their defense, the boys are usually really good at dinner.  But given the stress with preschool and terrible twos behavior lately, I was leery.  The boys were both awesome, though.  W ordered his own meal.  When did he get so big??  And ate most of it!  Woohoo!  So that was fun.

Saturday was all about errands.  Haircut, bank, pick up lunch, grocery store, another grocery store, and W and I picked up ice cream.  He’s been asking me for the past week to go get ice cream.  Note, he doesn’t actually like ice cream.  But he does like running errands with mommy.  He also asks about 3, 456, 702 questions along the way.  The weather was really cool on Saturday.  So refreshing! I loved wearing long sleeves and even dressed the boys in festive Halloween outfits.  I say if stores can decorate for Christmas, then we can rock Halloween attire. J

Bumble Bee hat.  Adorable.

Halloween tops courtesy of Nani.  They even glow in the dark! :D

Check out their hands in both photos.  They're in nearly identical positions.  They may not realize it yet, but I'm certain they share a special bond. :)  

Sunday was church, Starbucks, Bears game (they lost –boo!), walk, park, and more grocery shopping (I couldn’t find what I wanted at the previous stores – ridiculous, I know).

 So lots of errands and running around.

We dressed in Bears colors for church. W's face says it all... Seriously, mom??  

The shoes, the cardigan... I die.  So much cute.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Friday Thoughts

I heard a little rumor that the PSL has debuted!!  I think I may stop on my way home from work today and check for myself.  Pumpkin spice Frappuccino seems like a good way to end a challenging week.

Speaking of challenging… preschool.  Ugh.  I never expected it to be so difficult.  Luckily, Thursday was better than Tuesday (I mean it couldn’t possibly have been worse – crying so much you puke has to be rock bottom??).  I continue to second guess our decision to enroll W and wish I would’ve waited until he was 3.  Now that we’ve started, I feel like I owe it to everyone to try a little longer.

Here’s hoping to sleeping through the night this weekend since last weekend was a bust…

Looking forward to the start of football season, though the Bears are supposed to be awful this year.

I started a Christmas list for the boys and even purchased a Christmas gift for them.  WHAT?!?  How’s that for preparation!!  I had a coupon and wanted to use it before it expired.

Yesterday was a rough day.  Both boys had super cranky moments and complete meltdowns.  Then at the end of the day, this:

W: “Mommy?”
Me: “Yes?”
W: “I wuv you.”

He’s said: “W loves mommy” previously, but never like that.  Melt my heart.

I’ll leave you with this…

Never Forget 9/11

9/11 is such a somber day.  I always tear up at some point in the day – remembering the series of horrific events that unfolded, remembering so many lives that were lost, remembering the footage of people running from the Twin Towers…  I was in my dorm room getting ready for the day when breaking news interrupted the Today Show.  I was shocked.  Horrified.  Should I still attend class?  Students were in a state of confusion, disbelief, numb.  I dread explaining the significance of the day to my boys.  But I will be sure to note how people came together after such tragedy.  How we all wept.  How we hugged our families and friends tighter.  How countless Americans donated blood, donated money to help the victims.  At college, we passed around giant water jugs and filled them with monetary donations.  We packed the football stadium to watch people form a giant American flag.  We came together.  United we stood.  I think it’s important to remember that comraderie today as the news seems to be filled with nothing but hatred – for police officers, for African Americans, for Caucasians, for all other races, for homosexuals, for those of other religious backgrounds, for anyone with an opposing opinion.  United we must stand.  Never forget.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Weekend Recap and Colds for All

Things continue to be… challenging.  I was looking forward to a 3 day weekend – until we all came down with colds.  Luckily, they all seem relatively minor and I hope I didn’t just jinx it.  Of course, W and S were the first to have cold symptoms and the boys shared with mom and dad.  I always worry when A gets a virus, but with the start of school it was inevitable.  Anyway.  There were a few highlights from this weekend... 

On Friday night, Uncle Brian brought over my nephew’s old bed for W.  This bed just so happens to be in the shape of a race car.  SO cool.  W loved it and has been sleeping well in it (knock on wood, jinx, fingers crossed, etc. etc.).

 Saturday, S turned 7 months old.  Sob.  I took W grocery shopping with me and he was so cute.  I love when we get to spend one on one time together.  I even bought him a drink at Starbucks for being such a great helper.  My mom came over that evening and helped me decorate for fall.  I made soup for dinner to get into the fall spirit... too bad it was 90 degrees outside. :)

Sunday, was my mom’s birthday.  We went to church and Starbucks and gave her a little gift.  Then, A and I took the boys to a local pool.  We’d never been to this pool before and W had a blast.  There was a special toddler pool complete with a “water slide”.  I’ve never seen W have so much fun in the water.  He typically walks at the edge of the pool and always wants A or me to stay with him (which is fine because I'm always nervous about him going under water).   Not so here.  He was splashing, jumping, and sticking his face in the water.  He was totally in his element.  I so enjoyed watching him play.  S had fun too, sitting at the water’s edge.

Sunday night, I was sure the boys would sleep well after such a busy day.  Annnnd S was up 4 times due to his cold.  It was rough.  I woke up feeling lousy and A took the boys for a walk so I could sleep just a bit longer.

Every weekend I think maybe, just maybe, I'll get to catch up on sleep and sleep a whole 7 hours without any interruptions.  And every weekend I'm disappointed.  I supposed I should lower my expecations. :P

In other news, I think W is going through his terrible twos/threenager phase.  He’s been defiant lately and has gotten quite a few time outs for not listening, throwing, etc.  Preschool continues to be awful.  I stayed with him yesterday, thinking he’d relax a bit if I was there.  Not so.  W cried for an entire hour straight and then threw up because he had been crying so much.  I felt awful for him and it was incredibly stressful for me.  By the end of class he had calmed down enough to play and even participate in music, but I was so emotionally/mentally exhausted.  I’m ready to quit, but people keep telling me that it will get better.  I appreciate the advice and encouragement, but right now, I just can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel – and if I do eventually see it, will it be worth it?  I don’t know.

So colds, lack of sleep, and lots of tears have been the theme lately.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Preschool Woes and a Tough Week for Mom

It’s been a difficult week in these parts.  Not difficult in the worldly sense because I know I’ve got it pretty good and things could always be much worse.  But difficult in the realm of motherhood.

For one, W is having a really tough time at preschool.  I didn’t expect it to be easy for him, but I also didn’t expect tears the entire time. :(  Especially because preschool seemed to start off well.  I’ve talked to friends who have taught preschool and also fellow moms.  From what I’ve gathered, W’s reaction is normal and this process will take time.  But it breaks my heart to leave him in tears only to return and find him still in tears.  I’ve tried preparing him, talking to him ahead of time, talking about activities, distracting him while we’re there, staying with him at the beginning of class.  And things only seem to be getting worse.  I know it’s early.  It will take time to adjust.  But at what point do I throw in the towel and try again when he’s a little older?  Because honestly, right now, this isn’t working for anyone.  He’s miserable and not interacting with other kids, which was the whole point of school.  I’m miserable, feeling guilty for leaving him and missing valuable work time.  Hopefully, we can make this work…  Ironic that this preschool/working from home endeavor seemed ideal… not so much.

Yesterday, I was running late (which has been the case since A returned to school – still trying to find my groove) and when I was finally ready to leave the house, I couldn’t find my keys.  I looked throughout the kitchen and emptied out my work bag.  Then I remembered that I left the keys in the basement.  Found them and headed out the door.  About 30 minutes into my drive, I realized my laptop wasn’t in my bag.  I had left it on the counter when I emptied out my bag while searching for keys.  So I turned around and headed back home to retrieve my computer.  Grabbed it and headed out the door again.  I wasn’t planning on stopping for gas on my way to work, but now I needed to.  So I finally arrived to work 1 hour and 45 minutes after leaving the house.  Awesome.

And finally, have you heard about the police officer that was shot and killed while on duty in IL?  The killers are still at large.  This happened about 30 minutes from my house.  Devastating and senseless.  Police helicopters were flying over my house on Tuesday morning.  Since hearing this, I’ve been on edge.  I just can’t fathom why these crimes happen or how people can be so evil.  And the fact that there are murderers on the loose is really frightening. :(

So not my favorite week.