To all that have missed us, thank you! I am slowly making a comeback. But for now, here’s a little taste of what we have been up to…
You know, just –
Wishing we owned this home. This view. This hill.
Stopping to smell the flowers. The right way.
Looking to mother nature for some inspiration.
Multi-tasking dance with art.
Creating a masterpiece.
Hanging with real live trees.
(Yes, she is hiding.)
And some more hide-and-seek…
There are a couple of moments in my academic career that I can remember, where I felt the stress of, at that moment, impossibility. One, was 11th grade math after foolishly skipping too many classes in 10th grade math, where quadratic formulas, factoring and polynomials came out of what seemed like nowhere and numbers were suddenly grouped in brackets within brackets with all kinds of foreign divots and lines. The other, was my final year in University where I had to come face to face with William Wordsworth’s, philosophical, poetic, 400 plus page, 1805 version of The Prelude, and his revisions in a book of the same length 45 years later. But not just having to read it and understand it, which was a feat in itself. But seeking and having to find Wordsworth’s ultimate ‘truth,’ his authentic ‘self,’ as one poem is fraught with raw feelings and emotions while the other, is altered by more contemplative thought.
But prior to that, in my elementary years and after, in the ‘real world,’ in a very honest sort of way, things seemed to come easy for me. (Not counting any kind of strenuous physical exertion). I was pretty much the kid in class who sat silent but knew every answer to the other kid’s questions when they had their hand up. I was the girl who only needed to be told once in the workforce and learned quickly from my mistakes. And as I got older, things that people would complain about that was hard, I felt the opposite. Learning an instrument? Easy. A foreign language? Fine. Throwing a wedding? A cinch. Working 15 hour days? Great. Moving to a new city thousands of miles away and starting from scratch? A freaking breeze. Even childbirth in retrospect wasn’t difficult per say, but rather more painful. My point? I’m not trying to sound conceited, I swear.
What I’m trying to say is, raising a child – is, oh my gosh. HARD. It doesn’t even stand a chance in comparison.
Which comes to why I haven’t been blogging these days or weeks rather. I found myself making excuses that my life has been so busy, but really, it’s just been hard. Amplified by a hundred being alone in a different country with no family or many friends, a husband that works long and late, car-less most days in the biggest car-needed suburban city, with a spicy 2 year old. But this is not a ‘woe is me,’ post. Nor is it a sappy written product of ‘mommy burn-out.’
It is a post about how silly hard my days have been. Silly, being the only word I can think of for now.
Like for instance, tonight, Els fought me on brushing her teeth before bed. She refused to open her mouth, kept shaking her head and saying, ‘No. I don’t want to brush my teeth.’ I used every tactic in the book to try and get her to concede. Until finally something worked. What made today different than every other day? Nothing. It’s the same every night. Every single night.
She also fought me on pants. Wearing pants that is. What made today different than every other day? Nothing. It’s the same every day. Every single day. We could make a TV series based just on that. A suspenseful 20 minute episode of ‘Els and The Pants.’ Does she put them on at the end or doesn’t she?
More to add to the battlefield. Eating vegetables. Changing diapers. Taking a bath. Going to sleep. Staying asleep. Letting me sleep. Ha!
All in all, I’m not really rested, but ready nevertheless to start blogging again. I guess I just needed that extra kick of hot sauce Els seems to carry with her to give me my mojo back. Her quotes alone lately…
She is a character, pant-less, diaper-less and all. And I love her. And thankfully, she tells me so too. Every day. Every night.
Every so often, as they come, I like to take mental notes of ‘things I never expected with having a baby.’ And today, added to the list was: BUSY, NO REST WEEKENDS.
I’m starting to feel like I’m in a strange SCI-FI flick, where my present and future self are somehow altering my past, including my memories. Like what it felt like to sleep in uninterrupted. How my couch felt like when it was expertly molding itself to my back. What soft lazy slippers sounded like against clean, hardwood floors. And how a hot cup of tea could rest in my hands with the same reverence of a tiny newborn puppy while staying put so fine and so warm.
But alas! I must not think of such frivolities anymore! As there are things to do, and things to accomplish! And no matter how busy our weekend has been, look what we managed to create.
Homemade Easter flowers.
Made in: Recycled baby food jars. With: Easter colored beads, pom poms, feathers, modeling clay, pipe cleaners, gems and washi tape.
To beautify the jars, I took pink and white polka dotted washi tape and secured it around the top.
We then took pink and yellow modeling clay (it is very soft and spongy) and smoothed it into the bottom of the jar. Added some pom poms and gems on top.
Cut up some pipe cleaners into different lengths, stuck them into the clay and fed beads through them. On one, we decided to stick in some pretty feathers.
PS. *Always supervise your toddlers/kids when playing with beads and glass jars. Plastic cups are also a good alternative.*
A mental list to myself, from myself for the next time, if, BIG if, there is a next time…
1. When they say breastfeed every two hours, that doesn’t mean forever.
Ok… So I didn’t do it forever, but I was pretty much waking my baby every two hours long after it was okay not to… I TOTALLY missed that memo.
2. Buy a good car seat. For every reason.
My husband and I suffered from major baby-sleeping-in-car-seat envy. Because of course, our baby, hated hers. We were lucky if she lasted five minutes before she cried bloody – everything. And once we switched to a different one, (much later, i may unfortunately add) our lives were forever and ever and ever changed.
3. Don’t hibernate for the first three months at home.
I took, ‘be careful of exposing your newborn to germs’ to a whole new level, by not going out at all. In retrospect, it probably would have been the best time to go and have a nice dinner with my husband, while our baby slept safe and sound in her little stroller bassinet. ( As you can see, I did not say car seat, because even in retrospect, that is wishful thinking).
4. Buy a stroller with a BIG under compartment basket.
Every time I saw my friends cruising along with their Uppa Baby Vista’s, I got a case of serious under compartment basket jealousy. I had a friend carry an entire high chair attachment under there. It made mine look pathetic in comparison. Not to mention, it somehow always had the appearance of looking like one-dress-size-too-small, if you know what I mean.
5. Don’t wait 6 months before introducing a bottle.
I was so afraid of that ‘nipple confusion’ thing, I decided to hold off on the bottle entirely. Big mistake. She had nipple confusion alright. Just not with mine. When I tried feeding her with the bottle for the first time, and the 10th, and the 50th time, she chucked that bottle so far and so hard we have permanent marks on our walls to remind us of that total parenting fail.
6. Eat out. Eat slow. And enjoy eating. BEFORE having a baby.
Because frankly, I know those three things can not co-exist at the same time ever again.
7. (A.) Have a baby shower.
(B.) Have my registry made up only of restaurant take-out gift certificates.
8. Don’t listen to the blogs that say a diaper changing table is a waste of space/money.
My back certainly told me different.
9. Listen to the blogs that say a wipes warmer and a diaper pail is a complete waste of time and money.
10. Try to wear something besides a nursing bra and hubby’s boxers for the first 3 months post-baby, so that when looking back at pictures there’s more than just me in a nursing bra and hubby’s boxer’s, post-baby.
Am I missing anything else?! Please feel free to add!
Today, I had a mission.
Find out what the heck is inside my 2 year old’s purse.
The tricky part: She doesn’t part with it at all. She sleeps with it day and night. And she REFUSES to show me herself.
But risky, obsessively curious me, was willing to compromise a perfect, successful nap just to get a glimpse. And that’s exactly what I did. Luckily she didn’t wake. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t feel like a madwoman on the run with a ticking time-bomb in my hands.
Here’s what I found!
(Shot these photos with my head looking over and behind my shoulder.)
A measuring tape. (Just in case she needs to measure something, I guess.)
A dying flower.
Some random sticks.
Toast and bananas.
A purse within a purse.
A hungry hippo.
A spoon. Always.
A bent straw.
The letter C. The letter P.
Some heart pastas.
And a recycled case full of ‘treasure.’
This might only be funny to me. But I couldn’t stop laughing! Even if I was scared out of my wits!
One more time!
Hee Hee Hee Hee Hee!
Ok, I’m feeling guilty. Packing up, and returning stolen item back to rightful owner.
What’s inside your toddler’s purse?!