Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I love this kid!

Have I said yet how much I LOVE my little girl? I love her more than I love anything else in the world. And for the simplest of reasons....

- I love the way she tenderly reaches out with just one finger to rub at the fuzzy patches in her touch-and-feel books

- I love how she is such a great traveler ... we take car trips (3 hours each way) to see our parents fairly frequently and Kate just gazes out the window, plays with her bunny, or dozes on and off. She's such a good sport.

- I love how she sings opera at the top of her lungs when she's in her jumpy seat.

- I love when I am rinsing her hair in the tub and the water runs down her face and she just looks at me and blinks like, "Mama....I think you got me wet!"

- I love how she cranes her neck to look for people or things ... like when she's sitting on the bed and daddy crawls around on the floor to pop up and say "peek-a-boo".

- I love when I go in to get her from a nap and she has rolled onto her belly and she gets so excited to see me that she starts kicking her legs and flapping her arms like she's swimming.

- I love how carefully she studies new objects - pinching them and turning them slowly to see it from all angles.

- I love how she can learn new things by watching me ... like how to clap or wave.

- I love how hard she laughs when I fly her around the house to chase the dogs.

- I love when she lights up and grins as soon as daddy walks in the door.

- I love how she frantically waves her arms to splash in the bathtub.

There are thousands of more reasons why I love her so much... each day I find something new to appreciate about her. :)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Definition of Success

Before becoming a mom my definition of success would have involved big things like careers, homes, and money.

Today, I define success on a day-to-day basis.

Success is making dinner while holding a squirming 7 month old.
Success is getting out of the house dressed for an interview without getting spit-up on at the last minute.
Success is remembering where you left your cell phone.
Success is running a loud household appliance without waking the baby from her nap.
Success is finding time to take a bath instead of a shower.
Success is still being able to find the humor in things at the end of a long day.
Success is getting gas in the car, groceries in the fridge, and having lunch with the husband before the next nap time.
Success is remembering to move the laundry to the dryer.

Success is being able to enjoy the small accomplishments of day-to-day tasks while still looking out for the future.

Next on my to-do list? Moving! Our house goes on the market this week. Let's hope it's another success. :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Crunchy mama

Seeing as I didn't have a home birth, am vaccinating my child according to a standard schedule, and have a baby that sleeps in a crib, I am not a totally crunchy mama...but there is growing evidence that I am a somewhat-crunchy mama and I am proud of it. Here are the signs...

1) Breastfeeding. While pregnant I had high hopes of being a breastfeeding mom, but I was well aware that it doesn't always work out. There can be issues with latching, supply, allergies, etc. - not to mention breastfeeding is just plain HARD. For something that is so "natural", it sure does take a lot of work. It hurts. And in the beginning it took so much time that it was overwhelming. Thankfully, things worked out just fine and got easier with time and I have been breastfeeding my baby for over 7 months. She is 21 pounds and full of rolls, which means I must be doing something right. :)

2) Baby-wearing. Whether using a sling, a wrap, or a carrier, I believe that wearing your baby is one of the best things you can do for both mom and child. Not only does it make baby feel like they are being held and snuggled while allowing mom's hands to be free to do a plethora of things, but it is also great exercise. Remember how much I said she weighed in the point above?? Yeah...21 extra pounds can do a lot for the back, abs, and legs while vacuuming the whole house. :) And due to the snuggly factor, it calmed Kate down on many a cranky day.

3) Homemade baby food. Why? Why would you make food when there are so many great (and now organic) choices at the grocery store?? Because it's cheap! And it's easy! And it tastes so much better! And it is HEALTHY! To date I have made: green beans, carrots, sweet potatoes, peas, squash, apples and pears. Want the recipes? Ok, here: Steam veggie or fruit. Puree. Freeze in ice cube tray. Ta-da! Don't you feel like a domestic goddess?

4) Cloth diapering. Say WHAT?! Cloth diapers....who? Where? ME! HERE! It's true. I've crossed over to the dark side. Again comes the question - WHY?? Answer: because I am tired of washing poop. I'm sure that was opposite of the answer you expected, so let me explain. My child's butt must be malformed. No matter what brand or size of disposable diaper we put her in, she manages to have multiple blowouts per week. Up-the-back-to-her-armpits blowouts. Which result in me washing her onesie, shirt, pants, changing pad cover...and on a really bad day her socks. While scratching my head for a solution I requested help from some lovely ladies (shout-out to my GP Mamas!) who suggested that I try cloth diapers. Instead of running screaming from the answer I started my research and soon learned they were right. It is the answer I was looking for. Cloth diapers offer a better fit (with an elastic band around the back specially designed for tiny malformed butts) and MUCH easier clean-up that includes a rinse of the poop and tossing the diaper into the washer. No more poopy clothes or unexpected surprises. Plus, cloth diapering is cheaper. A lot cheaper. And my Miss America answer - "It's friendly for Mother Earth." But really...it is. And who doesn't want to be a little bit more environmentally friendly?

So there you have it. Somewhat-crunchy Mama. Now please excuse me while I go put flowers in my hair and dance through a field of wheat. :)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

99 Things

One rule: Bold the items that you have done in your life.

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightening storm
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Received flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been a passenger on a motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year’s Eve
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Got a tattoo
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake (well...technically I didn't swim in it. but that's because it's gross)
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

There are quite a few items on this list that I haven't accomplished yet, but would love to. Like going to Africa and sleeping on an overnight train. There are also a few that I never intend to complete, like killing and preparing an animal to eat. :)