Wednesday, September 28, 2011

How personal to make it?

I am baffled in today’s day and age when we hear about articles of an employee losing a job or a student losing a scholarship because of something dumb they put on the internet. Hello?! It’s 2011. The internet is nothing new, and the current generation of college kids has beentyping as long as they could write their name. I am 100% certain that my kids will be typing before learning cursive (is it even taught in school anymore?). However - I digress.
The focus of this post? People – what you put on Facebook? That’s your own little, completely non-private (I don’t care how many privacy boxes you checked or unchecked), corner of the World Wide Web. Think of it as a bulletin board that the world could potentially see. And a blog? Well, that too my friends, is not private. Even if I were to make this blog “private” – I am certain that it would not take a hacker more than a moment or two to figure out how to pop in and take a look at all the interesting ramblings I have to say.

Which leads me to my point. And I don’t think I have an answer, it’s more of a question I muse to myself from time to time. How personal do I make this blog? What are my own “privacy” filters? I haven’t taken the step of only allowing “followers” to read, and I’d really like to avoid doing that. As a blog-lurker myself, I appreciate finding people who allow me to view into their world, however filtered the online version is. As a mom, reading blogs is a very good way to learn about more than I ever wanted to know about more mom-related topics than I ever thought possible. And some of the things I stumble upon actually are of interest or useful to me. I post pictures of myself, my husband and my baby. I use our real names and you certainly don’t have to look very hard to find our last name. I do stay away from any even remotely taking the appearance of negativelydiscussing my place of employment or coworkers – so I suppose I do have one clear area of my life where I draw the line, online.

But lately I’ve wanted to share more on some topics. And find myself wondering if I should share less of others. (If for no reason otherthan the fact that reading about the minutia of Life With A Baby is really onlyinteresting to grandparents. Of which Ellie has 10 of….). I read interesting articles and think I should post the link on facebook. I have thoughts on controversial topics and wonder if I should share. 99.9% of the time, I steer clear of either of these activities because I don’t want to get too personal and I don’t want to offend, but then I wonder – if I care about a topic, and I have an opinion, what if sharing my opinion could change the world, even if only a little bit? Or if I find something interesting, wouldn’t someone else find it interesting as well? What’s a well-connected (only in the online sense of connected) girl to do?

Because my life? Isn’t all about changing diapers or cleaning my house or making dinner or going to the cabin or whatever I tend to blog about here. I have issues I care deeply about, and topics I find myself unable to let go of. Do I let go and take the plunge and go deeper? Or do I take a step back, cover the beautiful face of my darlin girl, and start focusing on privacy protection?

(For the record, I have like seven readers, so it’s not likely the content discussed above even matters very much. :) All this was sparked because I just that I came across an interesting article that I wanted to stand up and shout SO TRUE upon reading. And the article? Was about pumping while at work. And I read it while I was pumping – how ironic is that? And I thought about how feeding my baby (and my whole familyfor that matter) – nursing, pumping, even what I will feed her beyond mama’s milk – is something that I DO care deeply about. And I thought about posting the article on facebook. And then I chickened out. So I didn’t. For the record, the link is HERE. And yes, pumping is a very inadequate substitutefor the real thing, and YES, it makes me feel like a dairy cow. But I do it because I want to. And YES, I had to buy a new pump this weekend because HOLY HECK did my baby sleep through thenight for a very very long time, and OH MY GOSH did I hurt so badly when I wokeup and WHAT did my girl do? Refused to nurse. So I ran to Walgreens and then to Fred Meyer because I needed relief. TMI perhaps?) :)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Parenting is hard, ya'll!

Having been at this gig for just over four months now, I can say with certainty that YES, parenting is hard. And that's having a super dooper easy baby too - the easiest (and cutest) baby I've ever encountered, really.
baby girl? gearing up for ski (or snowboard) season!
She's pretty straightforward and happy. She's hungry and she eats, she's tired and she sleeps. She's playful and happy and plays and smiles. You get it. But even still, she'll throw us curve balls every now and then and completely catch us off guard and wonder HOW in the heck we will make it through.
The other night after a great day, she wouldn't stop screaming for almost an hour and a half. I guess that's not entirely true - she'd scream and then get distracted and stop, but then remember her mission and keep on screamin'. We tried everything - swaddle, unswaddle, feed, change clothes, change diaper, burb, tummy, back, leave alone, play with, tylenol, etc...  What the heck girl?? Finally we stripped her down to her nappy (that's Lacy talk for diaper. We fancy ourselves English. Just like I sometimes fancy myself southern, ya'll, and fry stuff in bacon grease. But that's another story). Soshe was happy playing on the floor in her nappy until it was without a doubt past time for her to go to bed, so we put her back in her jammies (cue screaming) and I gave her a bottle, after she flat out refused to nurse. She gobbled down that bottle and her little eyes rolled back in her head in no time and she was completely out. Girlfriend is confusing sometimes. She pulled the same screaming stunt this morning at 5:30am, and again, it was bottle to the rescue. And this is all from the baby who came out of the womb ready to nurse. Bottle, really? What's the bottle got that I haven't?

Sleeping in the crib. Like proud parents, we took a picture. :)
Also - another true story about our baby. We moved her to the crib last night after realizing she has about an inch left in the bassinet before she outgrows it completely. But lately the issue has been to swaddle or not. She seems to not like the swaddle and fights in and yells at me when I try to put her in it, but when we leave her arms out, she flails about and hits herself in the face and wakes herself up (or her mama if we are snoozing together). Then she removes her paci, throws it across the room, realizes it isn't in her mouth and yells at us to come get it. What's a parent to do?

I guess we might have some answers if I (ahem - we) bothered to read any parenting books. But I/we don't, and I really have a hard time subscribing to any one school of thought when it comes to parenting my unique chid anyway, so we wing it. And so far, I must say, we've done a good job, but she does throw us off our game every now and then. Which is what makes parenting so hard.

Hard, but so, so so beautiful and perfect. Mindblowing that I get to be a mama to this perfect angel. And now I know what it means that we were created in God's image.
The other things? Even with the world's best, sleepiest baby, we still sometimes find ourselves walking around like zombies, and basically coexisting in our own silos, which overlap only a very little. We each have things we have to do for ourselves, we each have chores we have to do for the family, we handoff the baby to each other when we need to change direction and then realize it's been several days since we've been able to snuggle up to each other in bed (thanks to me crashing out an hour earlier than him most nights, and him moving to the couch in the wee hours of the morning when I wake up 45 minutes earlier).  Even right this momemt - baby naps, he naps, I write and clean up a little. When she wakes up, he'll wake up, and I'll probably lay down. Oh well, it's the season of life we're in, I just miss my husband. This morning we tag teamed the 5am meltdown and once she was alseep, in the dark silence, we snuggled up under the covers and I realized just how long it had been since we fell asleep in each other's arms.

So, in conclusion: parenting is hard, even the easiest baby is hard to get sometimes and I miss my husband. AND, I know she's only four months old and everytime we "get" her, she'll go and grow up a little and we'll find ourselves having to relearn it all anyway. Yikes, it's a daunting thought.

But, it goes without saying that hard does not mean not worthwhile and hard most certainly does not mean without more rewards, more joy and more happiness than I thought was humanly possible. Sometimes my heart hurts when I think about what an awesome gift I've been given and what a sweet, beautiful baby girl I get as my very own. And sharing her with my family? Icing on the cake.
smooches from Granddaddy
Chillin' with Grandma at the cabin

Sunday, September 18, 2011

I should blog...

...because I love writing, I love documenting our life and I have things to say.
But, ya'll, I'm tired. Words fail me.

We had a great weekend. First time brining ECL up to the cabin where I spent so many weekends in my own childhood. It was really a "full circle" moment for me. Very surreal to now have my own kid at the place where for so long, I was one of the kids. Of course, I'm still someone's kid when I'm there with my own mom, but.... it's different now. PLUS - we get the master bedroom now, no questions asked!

Ellie did great, I was so proud of her. Slept fantastically, handled the attention like a pro and generally did what she does best: smiling and looking sweet. I love sharing her with my family.

Of course, on the way home we stopped at my folks house to feed her and realized upon removing her from the car that she'd been happily sitting - quite literally - knee deep in her own crap. Covered , knee to back. For the first time ever I cut her out of her onesie. And that was followed by another blowout a couple hours later, a vomit and a teeny tiny little fever. So, two firsts for us! First cabin weekend and first little bug. I'm sure she'll better tomorrow. Tonight, she's sacked out in my arms.

Happy Sunday night! 

Saturday, September 10, 2011

seasons, change and whatnot

(Please excuse this unorganized word vomit. I've found that in the last four months (one year, really), and especially since going back to work, my brain just isn't functioning as cohesively as I would like it to. Also excuse the smattering of pictures from the last two weeks. Can't help myself, and who wants to read words when there is a cute baby to look at?).

Every morning on my walk into work, I find myself thinking about an assortment of things, and often craft a blog post in my head. I tell myself I'll just type it up really quickly when I get to my desk (won't take more than 15 minutes, and I'm there hours before anyone else shows up around me), but when I sit down and open my computer there are at least twenty things that take my attention away. So, I don't type anything. Then I get home and have a couple hours to play with my girl, maybe get a quick snooze together, maybe make dinner, maybe do a load of laundry, wash bottles, etc. before I have to put her to sleep, at which point I too want to go to sleep (waking up at 5am and maybe once or more during the night sure does make me sleepy). So, no blogging for a while. Or, anything else for that matter. If you came to our house, you'd find dog hair all over the floor (no time for mopping or vaccuuming), always at least a couple dishes waiting to be done, laundry piled up (at least in neat piles!), and toilets that haven't been cleaned in who knows how long. It's a victory if I've cobbled together dinner of some sort for Peter and I. Thank heavens for crock pots!

That being said, I find myself liking this whole "working mom" thing a whole lot more than I thought I would. Obviously, I miss my baby dreadfully and wish I could be with her all the time, but it's nice to feel... I don't know - valued? NOT meant to insinuate that mommas who get to stay home during the days with their babies are not doing something valuable - it's a club I wish I could belong to full time, but certainly going to the office and working and bringing in a paycheck has value all of its own. Our family doesn't have a choice at the moment. Mortgage and bills mean we both work. So I've chosen to have a good attitude about it and be thankful for my job and what it means. Further - it's nice to pull myself together every day, wear professional clothes (and heels!) and interact with adults on a daily basis. Plus, I feel like I've joined this little club, the subsection of mamas who are "working mamas." Women who fully understand what it is like to be torn right down the middle, with your heart in one place but your brain forced to be in another place all together. Women who are forced to "fake it til you make it" in terms of the elusive notion of "having and doing it all." Two weeks in and I've learned to multi-task better than I ever thought I could. Pump at work while catching up on emails? Doing it twice a day. Wash bottles while finishing dinner while wearing a baby in wrap. Done it (only no baby in the kitchen while knives are being used or anything hot is on the stove... I'm a little paranoid about that!). Wake up at 5am, jump into the shower, get bottles ready, leave notes for baby sitters, change diapers, drink coffee and eat breakfast while feeding the babe? Must do it. Not that I'm not frazzled at the end of the day, but my point is that I AM doing it. I have yet to tackle working from home - throwing that in the mix next week, but I remain optimistic that somehow in a 15 hour day I will be able to commit at least 8 to returning emails, building spreadsheets, selling product, etc... We'll see. :) I am certainly not trying to lift myself up or be boastful, but acknowledge that this new chapter in my life, this new season, is not the end of my happiness or functional life, as I was so fearful it would be.

Speaking of new chapters and changing seasons - tomorrow is September 11, 2011. This means it's been ten years since that defining day for America. September 11th holds a new meaning for me this year, as it's also the anniversary of finding out that Eleanor would be joining our family. What a strange notion that we will be be celebrating and mourning this anniversary simultaneously.

Ellie is waking up from a nap on her daddy. I can hear them talking to each other, and my heart melts. Love them.