Sunday, July 31, 2011

The mouth of babes

One of the best things about having a two and a half year old around the house is what comes out of her mouth. Not only is Kate's vocabulary getting more expansive each day, but she is beginning to really ask relevant questions, create coherent thoughts and just in general say things that make me laugh, cry or roll my eyes. Not to mention cringe, because lets be honest, toddlers are not equipped with a filter.

A few recent "Kate-isms" include gems such as:
  1. In the restroom at the movie theater, said extremely loudly about someone in the ONLY OTHER STALL: "Mom, someone is over there, and they are POOPING"
  2. Sitting in the car at the gas station after I told her that Daddy was going to get some gas: "Oh boy. Mommy, I LOVE gas"
  3. What she screams as she flees back to me after running up to a large black woman in the aisle of a store: "HELP! Mommy, a MONSTER!!"
  4. While playing pretend with two Minnie Mouse dolls in the back seat: "I'm sorry I scared you Minnie." "That is okay, you are my best friend."
  5. Following my instructions for her to "Settle down you little hellion!" she says: "I'm not a hellion, I'm Kate Edelbrock."
  6. After running up to me and grabbing me around my thighs, with her face about crotch level: "Ew mommy, stinky!" (I feel a need to explain here, but... sigh)
  7. When I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up: "A big sister."
  8. On her way home from school one day: "I want jelly beans." I told her we didn't have any. "Miss Kristy (her teacher) has jelly beans. And chickens. I want to go to Miss Kristy's house. Jelly beans and chickens. OH BOY."
  9. At the end of our week with family at the beach, we asked her what her Aunt's name was. When we told her (again) it was Aunt Annie, she walked up to her and said, "Hi, nice to meet you" and shook her hand.
  10. When Kate was having a hard time going to sleep, Ben went in and checked on her: "Daddy, Dallas Texas is NOT safe."
  11. When Ben farted (sorry honey) loudly on the sofa, she looks at him and says: "Daddy, you need to poopy?"

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My little Sassy Diva

Yesterday, Kate and her friend Emme had their first spa day together. This included the first haircut for both as well as the first manicure. We ended up going to some place called Sweet and Sassy, which is a shop and salon for young girls that looks like a glitter fairy threw up on everything. Obviously Kate was beside herself as she ran around the salon, picking up (fake) miniature dogs stuffed in purses, rainbow lollipops and sparkly cosmetics shaped like jewelry. 

The experience was hilarious, over-the-top and so fun to watch as the girls got their day of beauty. You could see how grown-up Kate felt getting her hair and nails done and I felt really lucky to be able to give her such a special first. 

Kate had her very own (purple) salon chair for her haircut. She was still a little small though, so they put her in a kind of patent-leather sparkly booster. Smart, because it was functional while not losing the tackiness (I mean, AWESOMENESS) of the experience. 
And of course, a matching purple cape. Which said...
"Sassy Diva"
We didn't take much length off, rather just evened up all her baby wispy hair. In fact, it doesn't look all that much different. But I couldn't bring myself to have them chop off too much at first. Even though Kate has my hair and I know from years of torture that long hair is not in the cards for her.
Such a big girl. This smile melts my heart, I just love her so much. My little Sassy Diva.
After the haircut, the woman doing her hair let Kate make a series of decisions to finish up her 'do. Kate got a little side pony-tail, glitter spray, strawberry scented spray and some stars "tattooed" on her cheeks with glitter dust. Faaaaancy.
Next the girls got to pick out their nail polish colors. Luckily, most of the REALLY tacky shades were a little higher than they could reach. 
Bright. But luckily Kate changed her mind 20 more times before settling on a color.

Emme and Kate first get (another) scented spray for their hands. Not sure what this was for, except to maybe gag the two pregnant Moms watching this whole process go down, but the girls seemed to like it.
Close-up of the stars on Kate's cheek. Too bad you can't see the rad glitter sprayed all over Kate's mane. By the time we were done, we were ready to hit a dance club. And yes, I was the victim of some accidental glittering as well. You couldn't avoid it in that place, it was on every surface of the salon!
What does a manicure for a two-year-old include? Well, a little filing, some glitter lotion on the hands, some heart-shaped confetti like stickers all over the arms, actual nail polish and then a shape (purple heart for Kate) painted on each thumb nail. Which lasted, oh, five seconds before Kate rubbed it off while admiring it.
All in all, it was a great morning. Two really happy (and sparkly) little girls, two proud and SUPER pregnant mommas.  What a fun day.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Kate and the bear

The other day, Kate and her Grandparents were playing her new favorite game, "Attack of the Bear," which starts with Kate hiding in her Dora tent, screaming, "Pops!! Be a BEAR!!" Pops then stands outside the tent, growling and batting it around, until Kate jumps out and runs to her Grammy screaming "SAVE ME!" and Grammy then "saves" Kate by holding her until Bear Pops turns back into normal Pops. Then she runs back into the tent and the cycle continues, until Grammy gets tired of playing and hands Kate a plastic golf club and tells her to defend herself by hitting the bear until he plays dead (or gets a concussion from a hard plastic stick to the head, whichever comes first).

A few days ago, Pops decided to mess with the system and actually CAUGHT Kate during her flight to safety. He was wrestling and tickling her and they had the following conversation:

Pops: I'm the BEAR and I'm going to EAT YOU UP!


Pops: Yum, I'm the BEAR, and I'm going to EAT YOU UP! I'm SO HUNGRY!


Pops: Here I go, I'm going to EAT YOU UP!

Kate: No Bear, don't eat me!! I'm just TOO CUTE.

What can I say, except obviously we are teaching Kate the lessons she needs to live a long and fruitful life. Like the tried and true lesson that cute will save you from a horrible fate, including but not limited to being eaten by a bear in the woods.

It just makes good sense.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Week 35

Well, its official. I'm pregnant. Yeah, I may have mentioned that once or twice in the last 35 weeks. But I think it is finally hitting home with me what that means. Mainly that I have to once again get something the size of a bowling ball out my hoo-ha. Which frankly, no matter how many women do it, just sounds impossible.

But impossible or not, this little dude is coming pretty soon and Ben, Kate and I are really stoked. Not just to meet our new addition, but also so mommy's hormones go back to normal and I can quit having mental breakdowns on a regular basis.

And yes, my family CAN tell I'm a little off. Yesterday after dinner, Ben gave Kate a chocolate mint. When she finished she asked for another one and we told her there weren't any more. She asked me specifically for MY mint, and I told her I didn't get one and that I was so sad about it. She considered that for a moment before she asked me, "You going to cry mommy?"

Ben snorted and told me he was fairly certain she was being sarcastic.

But beyond a return to mental and emotional normalcy, we are all getting anxious to greet our new family member. Kate asks me regularly to see her baby brother and seems at peace (finally) with someone else's stuff in "her" nursery. She kisses my tummy and knows that she will get to see E2 in a month. Ben and I sit in bed in the evenings when he is most active and watch my stomach roll as he does what I can only assume is some form of advanced baby calisthenics. And we dream about meeting him.

Only five more weeks. And then we'll be a family of four.


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A room fit for a clown

There is something about baby decor that just screams tacky to me. Don't get me wrong, it also screams "I'M SO FREAKING ADORABLE IT HURTS" but still, smiling animals, cars with faces, puffy alphabet letters... just not my style. Kate's bedding (at least in my eyes) was the perfect mix of modern patterns, vintage style and a few owls/birds tossed in for infant friendliness. Add on the amazing paintings my sister-in-law did to match and I loved her nursery. I loved it so much I bought the same pattern quilt for her twin-sized bed she DOESN'T EVEN OWN YET. Because I VERY rarely like something I've purchased two years after the fact. Usually it only takes me a week to become disgusted with a purchase, so when I was still giving it goo-goo eyes a full 730 days later, I KNEW it was the right pick.

With that kind of love for a first nursery, I knew finding the right bedding/style for E2 was going to be a bit more of a problem. Boy stuff is just HARD for some reason. I think its because while I want to avoid the really cutesy stuff out there, I also didn't really want to cover his bed in skull and cross-bones or focus on a sport. Because while my husband is a great basketball player, I have very little to offer in the sports department, so lets be honest. This kid has a 50/50 chance of sucking at organized sports but being KILLER at, say, reading and dripping sarcasm.

After much searching, I finally found a bedding I really liked. I mean, I didn't fall in love with it, but I really liked it. And then, then I got THE VISION. Something about the bedding reminded me of a circus, which I thought would make a really cool room. And on that day, an obsession was born.

Because as much as you think a circus SOUNDS like a kid thing, apparently it isn't. Finding circus decor for the room started to become a daily source of indigestion for me. There just isn't a lot of it out there. Enter my amazingly talented in-laws and a few random Amazon purchases and the room is (nearly) complete! There are still some knick-knacks, wall decals and miscellaneous items I need to pick up (circus piggy bank is on its way as we speak), but I'm kind of a procrastinator and the room likely won't be totally done until after I have the baby. And by then its too late to pat myself on the back for his nursery because I will be all sleep deprived and cranky.

Behold the amazing drapes my mother-in-law made for us. They are 3D big-top drapes, and they totally make the room. Because we left the walls neutral, we really needed some color to pop and these do a great job of bringing the whole theme together. The quote on the wall is a Dr. Seuss quote "A person's a person no matter how small."
This painting was done by my very talented sister-in-law. She has a craft blog that you should check out some time for great tutorials, ideas and art:
The bedding is "Mod Dot" by Skip Hop. The sheet is a little boring so I'm also looking for a blue and a red sheet to add some more color to the room.

I used the Dr. Seuss book "Circus McGurkus" to create artwork for this wall over the changing table. It is hard to see, but I love the illustrations.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Just when it can't get worse, it gets better

Yesterday I was having a rough day. Not only was I coming down with a cold, but I had no energy and no patience. After ten plus days of 100+ degree weather, I was toast. All I wanted to do was lay in bed with the a/c turned down to "FREEZING", while reading some senseless romance novel and rubbing lotion on my ever-expanding belly. Instead, I found myself rolling around on the floor of our play room, reading a book about Elmo's first day of school for the 500th time and playing dolls while my two-year old literally used my aching, 35-week pregnant body as a jungle gym/barca lounger.

I finally needed a break and hauled myself into Kate's mini-chair (which I barely fit into). She followed me from across the room and handed me one of her dolls. "Say HI" she demanded for the millionth time. I burst into tears, tossed her doll across the room and sobbed "I don't WANT to say "hi" Kate. Please, please for the sake of mommy's sanity, please PLEASE play BY YOURSELF for just one tiny moment."

Kate looked at me with VERY little pity for a moment, then wandered across the room to find where I had thrown her doll while I continued to boo-hoo. And in a case of perfect timing, Ben came home while I was still pulling myself together, so he got the full tattle-tale report from Kate who indignantly told him I threw her doll and cried. I gave her the stink eye, but apparently she is impervious to its power because I swear she just smirked at me over her dad's shoulder and repeated "and then SHE CRIED daddy!"

Ben decided I needed to get out of the house so we packed up and headed to the mall to run some errands. He promised to be in charge of Kate and let me just wander around, leaking hormones and hopefully de-stressing. We walked into the mall and I mentioned, "By the way, keep an eye out for the closest bathroom everywhere we go. You want to be able to book it if she has to go."

I don't know if that comment jinxed my poor husband, or if this was all destiny, but not five minutes after I sat on a bench to do a little zen people watching, I saw Ben RUN out of a toy store with Kate in his arms. He ran down a hallway that I knew to be a dead end and then came running back out with panic on his face. I decided to take pity. "Bathroom?" I called. He nodded and I trailed him shouting directions to the closest toilet. He disappeared in the men's room as I came huffing around the corner. I sat outside and waited to see if he needed any help.

Five minutes later, I heard Kate giggling and saying "OHHHH BUBBLES." Another minute or two and Ben popped his head out of the bathroom to ask if we had any extra clothes. I had to tell him no, I had been a little too mental when we left the house to be my normal, prepared self. He popped back into the bathroom and then came out carrying Kate with paper towels wrapped around her bottom.

"Can you tell she is naked under there?" he asked me.

Not to get into too many details, but apparently Kate had some bowel troubles and Ben had to throw away her panties and wash out her pants. Which meant he had to carry her through the mall half-naked. With me trailing them, alternating between laughing out loud and then giggling to myself the whole way. Because, when it happened to me, yeah, it was pretty traumatic. But to see my daughter poop on my husband? That is some funny stuff right there.

We get to the car and use every wipe, sanitizing gel and napkin we can find to ensure both Kate and Ben are squeaky clean. And thanks to an extra set of Kate clothes in the car, we are able to head back into the mall to finish up our errands. The only real issue is the leftover poop stains on my husband's long-sleeve work shirt. He rinsed and rolled up the sleeve to hide the offensive stain, but wasn't sure if it was enough.

Ben: "Can you tell I've got crap on my sleeve?"

Me: "No, but you are wearing an undershirt, why don't you just take your button-up off?"


Ben: "Gross, no. I'm wearing a V-neck"



Have I mentioned how much I love my husband?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The poop grenade

I want to talk about poop for a moment.

Yes, you read right. Poop. Because I've decided poop is worse than a grenade. Specifically, a grenade of horror that can come out of your sweet, potty training toddler at any moment. And, not only can it go off IN YOUR HAND, you never really know when it is coming. You just know it IS coming, so you better prepare yourself and hope you are fast enough to make it to a bathroom before... KABOOM!

Last week I wrote about our first (mis)adventures with potty training. It started out pretty rough but with some tips from commenters (HOLLA K. Elizabeth!) we nixed the pull-ups (too absorbent for Kate to notice when she was going potty) to panties (Yeah... feel that running down your leg little one? That is pee pee and it is GROSS) and she quickly began to realize the feeling of needing to go potty. We were going gang busters and I was patting myself on the back for potty training in, like, THREE DAYS (am I a bad ass or what?) when the poop grenade went off and blew me straight off my high horse. 

We spent most of the first week of training at the house. That allowed for quick access to a toilet and quick access to our sticker chart (REWARDS! FOR NOT PEEING ON YOURSELF! YAY!) but by the end of the week, I was going stir crazy so we headed to Target for a quick shopping excursion. 

We took care of "business" and I figured we had about an hour to get through the store before we'd have to worry about any potty-related activities. We cruised through the dollar section, checked out a few books and were making our way through clothing to hit groceries when disaster struck. And by disaster, I mean poop.

Kate randomly ran to hide behind a three-way mirror on our way through clothing and as I rounded the corner to get her I saw her face scrunched up in her "Leave me alone I'm working on something here!!" face. "ARE YOU POOPING??" I stupidly asked her. She shook her head no and grunted as she pushed something fierce and I saw my life flash before my eyes. Kaboom.

I grabbed her up and ran off down the aisle, dodging carts and innocent shoppers, all while chanting, "Hold on, we are almost to the bathroom, hold on and you can go like a big girl, hold on FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING HOLY!"

Yeah. There was nothing holy about what waited for me in her panties when we got to the bathroom. We bundled into a small little stall and I squatted down as much as a seven month pregnant woman can and checked out the damage. My hopes of a few little nuggets I could toss into the toilet were erased by the man-sized poop grenade that my daughter had innocently set off in my face. I set to work trying to minimize the damage, while my daughter tried to do everything in her power to make me cry. 

I asked her why she didn't tell me she had to go. She just repeated, "I'm so sorry mommy" over and over while I bit my tongue to keep from telling her she had a shitty (haha) way of showing me she was sorry. I told her it was okay as I tried to scrape poop off her backside with the THINNEST TOILET TISSUE ON THE PLANET (thanks for that Target). But, while I was busy reminding her not to touch anything, she was busy reaching around to see what I was doing and she got poop on her hand. 

"So, so yucky" she said as she WIPED HER HAND ON HER SHIRT before I could even react. I may or may not have said some curse words in front of my sweet innocent at that moment, but the REAL low-point for me was when, after repeating 200 times "Mommy said DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING" as she grabbed for the toilet seat, her panties, my face, and the tissue dispenser, I saw her start to put her fingers in her mouth (a comfort issue because mommy was being so nutzo I'm sure). In a panic, I popped her little naked hiney and shrieked "I SAID DO NOT TOUCH ANYTHING AND DO NOT PUT YOUR FINGERS IN YOUR MOUTH." I mean, I'm sorry, but poop fingers in the mouth can't be good for ANYONE and I just reacted.

Since I never have touched the child in any kind of frustration before, this little tap on the bottom sent her  STRAIGHT over the edge. That and mommy's yelling and crazy eyes. She stood perfectly still for a good five minutes wailing while I got her panties washed out in the sink, got our hands (and legs, shirt, etc.) as clean as possible and basically patted myself on the back for so traumatizing my daughter she would NEVER go poop in public ever, ever again. Like, running home from work when you are 30 so you can take a dooce type trauma. Yay for me, Mommy of the Year!

We got home and mommy apologized for being a whack job and we snuggled and all was forgiven. Although I was still positive that she would never, ever poop in public again.

So imagine my complete surprise, joy and overall HELL TO THE YEAH when Kate ran off the playground yesterday to do the toddler "I gotta go" dance for me. I picked her up and ran (waddled quickly) to the nearest bathroom where I swear a chorus of angels SANG for her as she pooped in the big girl potty. I gave her a hug and a high five and nearly cried tears of joy because despite my parenting failures Kate is a sweet, smart and well-adjusted kiddo. Who can drop a poop grenade in the potty. 

And I must say, that is pretty freaking awesome.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Love letter to a hater

Okay, so social media is a forum for over-sharing. And when you over-share, you open yourself up to all kinds of feedback. Positive, negative and just plain wacky and weird. I totally get it, and because I've often found myself talking about things like bodily fluids, fearing the penis and digging cookies out of the trash, I  really kind of deserve a good tongue lashing every now and again for being WILDLY inappropriate.

However, once in a while a comment just really needles me. You know, the kind that in your mind is so unfair, so undeserved, you just sit stunned for a second and then feel desperate to respond because you KNOW you have been wronged and if you just had an opportunity to provide a rebuttal everyone would see things your way?

Yeah. I had one of those comments today (sorry, not on the blog but another fabulous form of social media so you'll just have to use your imagination instead of finding actual comment). It was a comment to a totally innocuous question that came off as extremely judgmental. Maybe it was made in jest, but LORD HELP ME there wasn't a smiley face or any other emoticon that might indicate a little levity, so I was fairly ready to plant my fist in someones face after reading it.

I wrote several theoretical comebacks. Some had smileys, some were a little more pointed, and one version was just, "EAT ME" but I erased all of them. I just tried to keep telling myself that by engaging said person in some sort of verbal scuffle, I was giving what they said, and their hateful thoughts, too much importance. 

But hours later it is still eating at me. However meaningless this comment was, something about it made me feel LESS. Feel SMALL. Hours later, I'm still chewing on it, so this is what I want to say:

Don't judge me. Don't judge my lifestyle, my family, how we spend our time or how we spend our money. You have no right.

I'm proud of my family. I'm proud of our life, our home, our love and our respect for one another. I'm proud of how we've chosen to prioritize our time, energy and money to create this life. I'm proud of what we've accomplished, what we've built here. And I'm thankful. I'm thankful for it all. 

I'm not perfect. I'm not the perfect wife. I'm not the perfect mother. I'm me, but I'm doing a damn good job of being me, and that is the best thing I can do for my husband and for my children. 

So don't you dare judge me. You have no right.

Oh, and P.S.