I Hate New Year’s Resolutions

I really can’t stand the habit of  making a new-year’s list of resolutions. Probably because I’m not very good at them.

Instead of picking manageable things, I’ll pick something way long-term and unmanageable like “Lose 50 pounds” and … wait … the HUBBS did that this year. Hot damn. I, on the other hand, lost the baby weight, fell off the wagon, then proceeded to be dragged by said wagon — face-down through the mud — for the rest of the year.

I’ve probably gained 10 pounds since I last stepped on the scale. (Can you say “depressing”?)

Also,  I hate how guys can just go “I’m going to lose weight now” … and then they do.

It just isn’t fair. (I know, I know: LIFE isn’t fair. As if you didn’t know.) They don’t bleed out of their manly parts for a week every month. They don’t have PMS. They don’t gain weight by merely looking at chocolate cake or by eating a piece of bread. They don’t push something the size of a watermelon out of a lemon, their lemon didn’t need stitches and isn’t all “stretched out” (Thanks to the OB for that charming assessment), and they don’t have a belly that looks like a beach ball or a deranged zebra …

AND YET they drop weight more easy than we do.

More proof that if there is a god — It’s a dude. And he was probably dumped hard by some chick eons ago and THAT is why we women constantly get the fuzzy end of the lollipop.

(ahem.) Moving on.

My New Year’s Resolutions for 2012:

  1. Get back on the Weight Watchers wagon and jump on one of our exercise machines at least 4x a week.
  2. Use the daily deals coupons I got for several different classes I wanted to try out (yoga, zumba, and kickboxing), and pick one to continue with for the rest of the year.
  3. Lose 25 pounds.
  4. Haul on those bootstraps a bit harder and get a move on.
  5. Figure out what the eff my hair is doing this time and find a haircut that: 1. Looks decent, and 2. (more importantly) I don’t have to spend a lot of time styling, being that every time I walk into the bathroom I’m followed by two small children who want to brush their teeth, their hair, and look through EVERY. SINGLE. ITEM. on the counter/floor/in the cabinet.
  6. Find myself again — as in getting to the point where I care enough (again) about wearing make-up on a regular basis, making myself more presentable, and not slouching around in track pants and T-shirts all the time. (The ultimate in “I don’t freaking care”).
  7. Plan weekends better, so we go out and do more structured fun things. Like the zoo or children’s museums.
  8. Cut/trim/hack the grocery bills and everything else.
  9. Make more one-on-one time for the Hubbs.
  10. Let go of more: I get into this single-minded focus of “must do x, y, z, a, b, c, d, e, f, g …” every night and it ends  with me being wiped out and Hubbs being completely alone after the kids go to bed and we eat dinner. I need to remind myself that all those things will be there tomorrow. Cut them into smaller, more manageable chunks. Whatever. (I need to flesh this one out more.)
  11. Smile more. Laugh more. (This should be on everyone’s list.)
  12. Plan a weekend (maybe several) away with the Hubbs. (I got my feet wet this year with a few overnight trips.)
  13. Plan birthday parties better and more in advance.
  14. Have more fun.

So there you have it. My resolutions for 2012. Some of them are vague and open-ended and not really “resolutions” but more like goals. But since I doubt the resolution police are going to come knocking at my door, I think I’ll be just fine.

Happy New Year to you and yours. May the new year bring you whatever it is you are seeking.

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Christmas Hangover

And when I say hangover, its not related to alcohol. I’m hungover from the holidays. That magical mash-up of multiple parties, late nights, missed naps, insane cookie trays, crying children, shreds of paper that seem to get everywhere, that is promptly followed by … COLDS.

Well, one for sure. Sean is sick, poor wee man. Allie’s working on 3 molars right now. Her poor gums are swollen and bright red and her nose is stuffed up. Sean’s nose is stuffed up too — to the point that he’s calling Hubbs something between “Doggy”, “Daddy”, and “Donkey.” We’re not sure which.

OH! And now Hubbs — who is home with the kids all week — is getting sick.

FABOO.

Add some personal issues and 2 car mishaps in on Christmas Eve, and well … I was just hoping we’d survive.

Car Mishaps

Twas the night before Christmas, and from the garage
We were trying to load up for a festive homage.
Our car was packed up, we had taken great care
For oodles of gifts we had gotten to share.
When he stepped on the gas pedal, too quickly (in haste)
Into the garage door he did crunch our tailgate.

Well, the car seems to be fine. Just a bit scratched. The garage door, on the other hand, was dented, pushed off the track, and disengaged from the electric motor. (We also found out from the garage-door repair guy that a spring broke, which was why we couldn’t fix it.)

So there we were on Christmas Eve, garage door halfway open, completely askew, and us late for a party. It took me about 30 minutes in the bitter cold, but I was able to at least shut it. We left it that way, being that: 1. there was no hope of even getting someone out to look at it until Monday at the earliest, and 2. Only the Hulk could have lifted that door to get into the garage.

Party, Party, Party!

The two parties we went to were fun. They always are. And I enjoy going. But its harder now that I have kids. On Christmas Day, dinner wasn’t ready until 8:30 — a good 1.5 hours past Allie’s bed time. I kept her going until dinner by giving her bread and cookies, and once I put dinner in front of her, she horked down 2 kebabs of fruit, a quarter-sized piece of salmon, 10 pieces (maybe 1/2 oz) of prime rib, and a quarter-sized serving of mashed potatoes. She spit the green beans out and we discovered that she loves jell-o.

Sean, on the other hand, ate 1 fruit kebab, a piece of bread that I had brought from home, and a piece of string cheese, also from home. (Translation: He would eat more the next day.) He also had several tantrums, didn’t knew what he wanted, and started crying when a quasi-relative smiled and said “hi” to him. (Can you hear me sighing?)

Sick Monkey

I spent a good 20 minutes in the steam with Sean Wednesday night/morning at 1:30 a.m., trying to help him breathe easier and slathered his little chest in baby Vicks and cranked the humidifier on high.

And then he wouldn’t let go of my neck. Hubbs offered to sleep with him and was told “yeah” only to have that followed up with hysterical shrieking and a cacophony of “no”.

Sick toddlers have no idea what they want.

So I asked if he wanted me to sleep with him. He said “yeah” again, and let go of my neck, moved his pillow to one side of the bed, and laid down. As I kissed Hubbs goodnight, a little voice called “Mommy?!”

So I laid down with him, and the little guy curled up against me and pulled my arm across his body and snuggled in. It took me awhile to fall asleep, listening to his shallow, struggled breathing, willing him to just breathe through his mouth. Then he’d cough, wake up, move to another side, and fall back asleep.

All. Night. Long.

When he’s healthy, Sean sleeps like a brick. Once he’s asleep, he barely moves. When he’s sick, he’s like a fish out of water. He coughs, gasps for air, flops around, gets comfortable again, and goes back to sleep.

At 2 a.m., he fell asleep on my arm. By 2:30, he had his legs propped up on my stomach. Then farted on me. At 2:45, his head replaced his legs. At 3 a.m. I took a foot to the jaw as he flopped around again. I’m pretty sure I caught an elbow in to my throat at one point too, but I was too tired to care.

This Is Your Brain On Chocolate Milk

Exhibit A:

He crashed hard about 10 minutes later.

My House Looks Like A Hoarders Episode

What happens when you put a birthday and Christmas in the same month? A crazy amount of toys. Add Christmas decorations to the fray, and the house looks like a mild version of Hoarders. Except instead of junk, we have toys. Lots and lots of toys.

Hubbs donated 3 bins to Goodwill yesterday, which frightens me, because I don’t see a difference in the house. Its just like before Allie’s birthday party, when I took 2 garbage bags of toys into the garage to clear more space, then looked around and went “I think I need to do about 10 more bags.”

I started eyeballing the tree last night. Pretty sure that sucker’s coming down in the next couple of days. It’s taking up valuable toy space.

Sobering Up

All the above being said, I need to mention a few things:

I am so thankful for my immediate and extended family. My brother watched the kids last week and rocked their world. My parents swooped in on Christmas and the kids saw stars. My extended family wrapped all of us in cheer, peace, and love.  And for that I am incredibly thankful.

I’m thankful for my kids, because they bring me and Hubbs such joy and amusement and love. They make us see the world through their eyes and it instantly makes me feel a little better about that world.

And I’m thankful for the Hubbs. For supporting me 150% at all times. And for telling me what’s what. Even if I don’t always want to hear it. I love you.

Santa Claus Is Coming … To Torture Your Kids

I’ve got it all figured out: When they’re older and misbehaving, I’m totally going to threaten the kids with having to go see Santa and sit on his lap as punishment.

Its brilliant, because the old elf has to be evil or running a sweatshop or something because otherwise he wouldn’t elicit these reactions:

This from the kid who loves EVERYONE. The elf is evil!

This was Allie’s first experience with Santa. She took one look at his beard and lost it. (Apparently my extreme dislike of beards has been genetically handed down to both kids.)

But what the above picture doesn’t show is Sean losing his freaking mind. We couldn’t get him into the first picture because he wouldn’t let go of Hubbs. Check that: We couldn’t PRY him off Hubbs. He was like Spider Man, holding on with all arms and legs.

And screaming.

At the same time, Allie was arching her back and flinging her torso forward, trying to scoot herself off the jolly man’s lap. So in the interest of actually getting a picture with both kids in it, we took a family picture.

Note the instant calm radiating from Allie. No Santa = no tears! Sean? Not so much.

As soon as I picked her up, Allie stopped crying. She didn’t even mind being near Santa — as long as I was holding her. (Also note: In the picture, both Hubbs and I have the kids sitting on the knee farthest from the fat man.)

Sean had his eyes squeezed shut and  didn’t stop crying until we were out of the building, down the hall, outside, and I had handed him a sippy cup. This obviously means that there is no juice at the North Pole.

Because Santa is evil.

Also, if you appreciate crying Santa pictures, The Poop has a yearly contest. And it is faboo.

Happy Birthday, Princess

Dear Allie,

Today you are 1.  It sounds so cliche, but time has flown by. I can’t believe its been a year. It seems like only a month ago that I was in the hospital, being induced, and you came flying into this world. You’ve matured from a lovely little lump into a gorgeous little girl.

Yes, I just called you gorgeous.

She's 1!

Because you are. But its not just your looks, its your personality: You are luminous. Your smiles stop strangers in their tracks and melt the hearts of those who love you. You’re like bottled sunshine and rainbows and unicorns and glitter. You’ve recently become extra playful, and your laughter is like nothing I’ve ever experienced — your whole face scrunches up and you look like a little imp, yet the sound is pure joy. Its infectious, and your brother will run over to see what is so hilarious.

And your brother? Adores you. The two of you are cavity-inducing in your sweetness toward one another. You give each other kisses and hugs and smile before going back to whatever you were doing. He gives you toys to play with, whether you’ve asked for them or not, yet is a typical brother and will confiscate toys of yours that he likes. Luckily, you don’t seem to mind.

Yet.

Don’t even get me started on your father. At the slightest cry, he comes running. The advantage of not being a crier, I suppose. But I can tell already: You know the power of puffing out your lower lip and looking sad with slightly teary eyes. He’s helpless against it. I think my challenge as you get older will be teaching him to resist it. I’m just hoping you don’t abuse it in the meantime.

As for me, I adore you. One of my favorite times of the day is coming into your room to wake you up. You open your eyes with a smile and a giggle. If we lived in a Disney movie, small fuzzy animals would be frolicking and tweeting in large swoops above your head and singing with you. You’re also especially cuddly in the morning with your bottle, and I cherish that time.

You’re also “all girl” in so many ways: You love clothes. Specifically dresses. You’ll crawl to your closet and touch the frilled confections hanging there, pulling them off their hangars if I leave you alone long enough. If I hold you in front of your closet and ask what you want to wear, you invariably reach for a dress, your smile wide. You also love dolls. Baby dolls specifically. You smile and hug them and kiss their noses. If you’re sitting in a shopping basket, you circle them with your arms and babble at them. You cuddle with them in bed and in the car.

You’re getting the biggest kick out of walking. You CAN walk, by the way — you just haven’t realized it yet. Just tonight, you ran after a cat toy, taking about 10 steps in the process. Then you stopped — completely shocked — dropped down and speed crawled out of the room and around the corner, giggling the entire time. You do that a lot now. You’ll be doing something, like crawling onto the couch, onto your lion toy, onto a plastic bin, over your brother, and you’ll stop and look absolutely shocked that you just accomplished it. I think its a glimpse into your head — that you’ve been wanting to do those things for so long and now that you can do them, you’re just giddy.  And its contagious. I’m giddy with you.

Its been a fabulous year, kiddo. I’m looking forward to discovering the world with you.

Love you Sweetie Pie,

Mama

Only a few hours old.

1 month old.

2 months old.

3 months old.

4 months old.

5 months old.

6 months old.

7 months old.

8 months old.

9 months old.

10 months old.

11 months old.

12 months old.

Happy birthday, baby.

Cutie Pie.

Dashing Through The Crazy

I had a dream the other night that I was running around a big-box store trying to snag all kinds of presents for people but all I ended up doing was sprinting up and down aisles with nothing in my basket. While screaming. And all the shelves were empty.

I don’t think I want to know what that means.

By the way, I’m still not done with my Christmas shopping. I’m procrastinating in a major way and that never ends well. It’s like I’m in denial that it is — in fact — December.  The fifth to be exact. And exactly four day’s before Allie’s 1st birthday party (family), exactly 8 days before her birthday, exactly 12 days before her non-family birthday party, and exactly 20 days until Christmas.

This means that it has been exactly negative five days since I officially went out of my mind.

In other news:

  • My “little” brother is graduating from college this month. This makes me feel very old. He doesn’t have a job lined up yet. This doesn’t surprise me, but makes me very anxious all the same. I’m also very, very proud of him.
  • We visited Santa twice this weekend. I was hoping that by introducing the idea of him on Saturday, it would make for good pictures on Sunday. Our experience proves that there is no logic with children and that Santa will always be scary — at least until they figure out that free present thing.
  • We watched Santa parachute from a plane to our local airport on Saturday. It was insanely windy and cold, and he almost flipped upside down at one point. Santa’s got some brass … presents … I’ll give him that.
  • Sean told Santa he wanted a lion, elephant, frog, bunny, mouse, airplane, truck, and a monkey for Christmas. But refused to get within 10 feet of the elf.
  • Allie took one look at the beard and cried.
  • On Sunday, we took the kids to our real estate agent’s office and tried again. Both kids cried. But Santa gave them stuffed puppets as gifts. Sean got a raccoon. Allie got a unicorn that she hasn’t seen since she opened it — her brother confiscated it and hasn’t let go of either toy since.
  • We “decorated” our tree last night. The kids were interested enough to hang about 16 ornaments before getting bored. I’m thinking we’ll leave the tree as-is and call it a holiday.
  • If the attendance at Allie’s upcoming friend birthday party is any indication of the future, I already feel sorry for her teenage years. You can’t compete with Christmas plans, you just can’t.
  • I’m giving a ton of baby gear to a friend who will be babysitting her niece full-time in the near future. You have no idea how happy this makes me. I will have ROOM in my house again! (Well, some room.)
  • When complaining to the Hubbs about how tired I am, he said: This is what happens when you try to be wonder woman when you’re wiped out.
    To which I responded: Dude, I’m ALWAYS Wonder Woman. Just like Clark Kent is always Superman underneath.

Hey, I never claimed to be modest.

  • I need to program our thermostat to shut off while we’re at work. I keep forgetting.
  • I still haven’t started exercising again. In case you were curious, it shows. My ass is huge.
  • I need to write a list of everything I need for Allie’s birthday party on Saturday. Or my head might implode. Again.
  • Ohmygawd I haven’t ordered the cake yet!
  • I have a spider bite on my ankle. I know that it was from a spider because it looks like I have two ankle bones right now.
  • Did I mention that I’m sensitive to insect bites, and particularly spider bites?
  • In the third grade, I was carried to the office by a teacher because I had a spider bite on my pinkie finger and had red lines snaking halfway up to my elbow. My pinkie was so swollen it was the size of my thumb.
  • OK, must start exercising again and eating “on plan” and tracking it!
  • I made chicken tikka masala in the slow cooker for dinner tonight. I can’t wait to try it!
  • Chicken tikka masala has heavy cream in it. So diet friendly!
  • I also lose all sense of portion control when eating it.  So delicious!
  • Confession: I didn’t do all the cooking prep work for the above recipe. I marinated the chicken for 10 minutes and then mixed the sauce separately and poured it on top of the raw chicken.  In my mind, slow cookers should = easy. We’ll see how it turns out.
  • Must call bakery to order cake!

p.s: Allie says happy holidays.

She is so patient with me ...