Friday, August 29, 2008

Deep Breath

I have a very hard time purchasing things for myself that will make my life significantly better when I have not only the skills but the materials at hand to make the item. Of course, the missing piece in that equation is TIME - and that my friends is something that is significantly lacking (just look down at right-hand side bar, note that I have not updated any knitting projects or my de-cluttering goals since January).

A thought began brewing in my mind as we went to the zoo this morning. It further percolated on the trip home and I came *this* close to completing it. Then I made the phone call to John, complete with lots of pregnant pauses and rushed comments like, "I can sell something" or "No, I have the fabric and I can make one myself - it's too expensive." Finally, I just told him I wasn't going to get it and hung up. He I'm sure just shook his head and went on things while the two halves of my psyche battled over making a purchase.

Well, I said the hell with it and bought the damned thing. Wanna know what it is?

A Beco Butterfly carrier in Espresso. It was on sale for a great price and being able to pop Alex on my back with relative ease will be a God-send. I have a Sutemi Gear carrier that I used with Michael, but it was difficult at best to shimmy Michael around to my back and he had several pounds and a good inch or so on Alex. I put Alex on my back in the Kozy by myself yesterday and while I can get him up there OK, for him to be really secure I'm going to need someone with me to help which really defeats the whole purpose. Lastly, yes I have some lovely bone colored linen and a beautiful piece of hand painted fabric from Helen to use to make my own Mei Tei, but folks I have trouble making the time to eat so pulling out all the stuff necessary for a sewing project ain't happening anytime soon.

My fervent hope is that he'll fall asleep in it with relative ease and I can pretend that I'm just wearing a 16lb back pack while I knit or play my Nintendo DS for an hour at Starbucks. It'll be here by the middle of the week - I'll give an update then. Oh and if you want to get in on getting one at the sale price (most are around 30% off) better do so soon because I think the sale prices end on Sunday.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Not quite what I had in mind

I am counting down the days until Thursday when Michael will resume going to school three days a week and everyone can get a break from each other. I was getting precious little down-time before and now I'm not getting any. I decided to try and sneak out after Alex was asleep the other night and I got a call not twenty minutes after I left the house that he was awake and screaming. I've been snapping at the husband and then there's that whole insecure misreading everything he does as some sort of expression of anger or frustration towards me or my actions thing that is just oh so productive. Seriously - everyone needs a break from each other (well almost - Alex apparently can't get enough of me). I'm hoping that when we have the structure of school three mornings a week it will settle down a little bit.

I know this won't last forever, but it's really kicking my ass right now. Everyone needs so much from me and the strain is really starting to show because there is no respite for me. I think one of the hardest things to deal with is that I now have to bring Alex with me to my therapy appointments - which means I am paying my therapist $25 bucks to coo at my child while I juggle him so he doesn't flip out all while the things I really need to talk about with her are forgotten until after I leave. Frankly, I am strongly considering postponing them until October when John will be off every other Thursday and I can wing not bringing Alex with me to a daytime appointment.

I'd never agree with something as trite (and not a little smug in my opinion) as that treacle sentiment of "You'll miss these days when they are older," but what I will admit is that there are little bits of both of their growing up that I am currently missing because of how hard everything is right now. The, "You'll miss these days," sentiment is very dismissive to just how much energy is required to parent a child - it's boils childhood down to toothless smiles and belly laughs with no acknowledgement of frequent night wakings, colic or whining. Mothers are sold a bill of goods and all of us drink that kool aid at least for a little while. Where's my Hallmark card for changing my clothes for the third time in a day because the baby has spit up on them, or the one for preschooler having a screaming melt-down because the seat he wants to sit in on the subway is occupied?

I'm going to stop now because there is something that I want to really write about the bill of goods we are sold as mothers and it's very important to me - just right now my brain is mush and I really should be in bed, so I'm actually going to take that advice and go to sleep.

'Night all, more incoherent ranting to come...

Gotta love it

"Answer to me, Mommy (last name)! Answer to me, Mommy (last name)!"

Said by Michael this morning because I wasn't giving him and answer as to why we cannot bring sticks home fast enough.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

So lovely

We took the train out to Chestnut Hill this morning and had the most lovely time. Alex was little fussy, but Michael listened, held hands, did not have a meltdown when he was told it was time to leave the toy store or the playground, and all in all was a great kid to be around.

We are slowly getting more and more moments like these. I'm sure later on one of them will kindly remind just how hard this parenting two kids gig can be, but for right now I'm just going to enjoy the relaxing feeling.

Off to snuggle with boy the elder...

Monday, August 25, 2008

If they gave gold for effort

I'd definitely be getting one. I had to re-chart the sleeve because ya know I can't do anything easy like follow the pattern and gauge. That slowed things up considerably because I needed tiny graph paper and math - then Alex decided that I needed to come home NOW and so ended my dreams of Ravelympics glory. Frankly I got the body done and half of one sleeve - not too shabby considering I have two pretty intense kids.

I'll post pics later today - I'm off for coffee therapy.


My swatch

The body of the sweater

Sleeve chart

Half a sleeve

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Final Sprint

I have to frog back several rounds on Michael's sweater for the Ravelympics, do both sleeves and finish the whole thing by Sunday at 11:59am. I have dinner to cook, a baby who is all about mom, a husband and a four year-old. The only thing in my favor is that I am not wearing sunglasses.

I think I'm going to go for it. Wish me luck!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Evolving beyond the need for sleep

I am not sure what is up, but boy the younger decided he was not ready for bed earlier and is currently trying to scale my body so he can smile and coo at the laundry basket behind me. Whenever I let him stand up he gets this, "HHey, this is sooo cool!" look on his face.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Just a piece of advice

If I haven't seen you in several years and you know about Michael, please don't act all surprised when you find out I have a second child. It's pretty damned insulting to me, my family and most especially Michael because I know it's all about teh ebil Autism you are thinking. Maybe there's a reason why you have not been a part of my life for the past three years.

This has happened several times when we've bumped into members of my old mother's group the past few months and it really cements it in my mind that it was for the best that I am no longer involved with them.

The grass is always greener

Michael: I want Bear toothpaste (The fluorescent blue Oral B Little Bear training toothpaste that I happily tossed the other day).

Jenn: But you have your new strawberry toothpaste (the Tom's of Maine John picked up to replace it)

John: He told me last night that he didn't like it

Jenn: He used it fine for me the other night.

Michael: I want Daddy Toothpaste!

John: Can we?

Jenn: As long as you think he's not going to like it.

Michael: I like Daddy Toothpaste! Daddy Toothpaste is delicious! (said with a head-splitting grin and so much belief it's practically oozing)

John puts a dab of our toothpaste on his brush. Michael puts brush in mouth and makes to most fantastic sour face ever. He removes brush from mouth...

Michael: All Done!

Jenn: But you didn't finish brushing your teeth.

Michael: I want Strawberry Toothpaste. (holds brush out happily for the previously scorned toothpaste).

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

My open window

Just a quickie because I should be in bed.

After a very rough start this morning where I questioned my abilities to be a mother to two kids who seem determined to skate within an inch of my limits I had a wonderful afternoon. Alex devoured a rice rusk and played with some cereal before I decided to try and put him down for a nap - and he slept for an hour and a half. I spent the whole time not daring to actually start anything for fear that he would wake up. After he woke and nursed again I managed to make Michael some pancakes and we all had dinner - Alex made some faces at the broccoli I tried to give him, attacked and devoured two rice rusks and made a good effort to get some Joe's O's into his mouth (doesn't quite have a pincer grasp yet). After we had eaten I got Michael dressed and we went for a walk. Got home about 7, Alex asleep by 7.20 and Michael asleep by 8pm. I just finished nursing Alex after his FIRST wake-up since he fell asleep - an almost unheard of occurrence (10.30 - woo hoo!).

On a nursing front, his latch is greatly improved and I still smell strongly of maple syrup. I'm going to give it another week and start a slow taper off the herbs and see what happens.

This I could live with. Please let me not have just jinxed myself.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Be careful what you wish for

When I was pregnant, I used to say that I would be secretly pleased if the baby refused bottles. Now, it seems that I have my wish. I'm praying that it's not as dire as it would seem. From the looks of it, he is rejecting the formula and not necessarily the bottle itself. It's a new to him formula - this would be the forth time he's gotten it, and the last time he got it he vomited all over the place from we think a stomach bug. I think we are going to go back to the original one and see if that works. Pumping is an option, but considering he eats on average every 90 minutes during the day and every 3-4 hours at night there is precious little time to pump and when I do get a session in I get very little so it takes me a week plus worth of pumping to get enough for me to go out for a couple of hours in the evening.

I'm trying really hard to see a bright side to this - frankly all I want to do is cry.


Today was Michael's field trip to the zoo. We've been rather stretched in the sleep department for the past few days so that was count one against the trip. Count two is that I am going through a very antisocial phase where I dread being put in a position to have to talk to other people. I have a tendency towards this to begin with - sort of a love/hate relationship. I get desperately lonely sometimes, but it's extremely hard for me to make new friends. I'm very good at hiding it. When I've confessed it to others they are always surprised, but when I fill in the gaps then you can see it. One of the biggest things is eye contact - it's almost physically painful for me to make eye contact with people at times, even with all the training I've given myself to overcome it. So going to the zoo with parents of NT kids on a day where I don't want any interaction with the outside world is pretty much the definition of torture for me.

Since I did go out into the world today, I'm going to tune out tonight rather than go to my knitting circle because I desperately need some down time with the ipod cranked and some knitting to keep my hands occupied. I'm about 1/3 done the body on Michael's sweater for the Ravelympics and I might actually get it done. The mystery project is going - I'll probably put an hour or so into it tonight as well. Life calls, so I must dash. TTFN!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

As if there wasn't enough going on right now

Team Rosie's Ravelympics

I am bowing to the siren call of the Ravelympics and discounted yarn. I want to knit the boys matching sweaters for Christmas and had settled on a yarn (Cascade Ecological Wool), but not a pattern yet. I checked in the other day to see a new post on the Rosie's Yarn Cellar blog saying that not only were they "sponsoring" a Ravelympics team, but they were offering a 15% discount on yarn. Some hurried sleuthing later, I've settled on making Sherwood from Knitty. The only fly in the ointment is that Rosie's only has two skeins in a few colors of the Eco Wool, not the three that I would really need to get two sweaters so I'll only be doing Michael's right now.

So let's see - the perennial Knitty submission (which is going in this year, dammit), all of my regular knitting, 17 days to knit a sweater for my Michael (which to be honest really is closer to a woman's small), and two high-maintenance kids. I am insane and I have the papers to prove it.

On the good side, I smell of maple syrup and Alex is nursing well again, he is napping in his bed, and I actually got 7 hours of broken sleep last night with a nice three-hour chunk thrown in so things are about as well with the world as they can be right now.