Thursday, April 2, 2015

He's all boy

Yesterday I had two encounters with this little phrase and it got me thinking. "He's all boy" has bugged me before every now and then in little ways, but yesterday really made me wonder, "What are we talking about??"

I took the kids to the park and we met this sweet mom with her two boys. Her oldest was 8 1/2 and just a darling boy. So caring and kind, just wanted to play with my kids and share his bubbles with them, concerned about them if they cried, so sweet. His little brother was 2 1/2 and while still very sweet, also in that experimental, boundary pushing phase. We had brought a plastic bat and a large bouncy ball with us, and after playing with the ball for a while, the boy decided to see how well it would bounce off Evan's head. If you know my son at all, you know that didn't go over particularly well (tears and "I don't like that!!"). Just a bit later the boy took the plastic bat and proceeded to bonk Charlie repeatedly on the head with it. The mother apologized profusely and threw out those magic little words, "He's just all boy!"

For just a tic, it made me think...what do we mean when we say that? I know the general idea that surrounds that phrase that I'm supposed to pick up, but really, what are we saying there?

Then later that evening someone commented on my son's scraped up knee, "Look at his knee (chuckle), he's just all boy", I laughingly pointed out that Charlie had a matching scrape on her same knee from climbing the same dirt hill before I could catch myself and think, "Wait, does that infer that she is also 'all boy'?"

It's one of those silly things that rolls around in your head needlessly. In all my spare time (insert emoji crying-laughing here), I think I figured out what we're saying with this colloquialism. We use it when a boy is running around like crazy, being aggressive, hurting themselves, being loud, doing something physical with little to no thought of harm to himself or others. It's a very physical, loud, unaware boy, this All Boy, boy. So we're saying the essence of being a boy is kind of a very primal (or caveman like) idiot of sorts. We also use it to excuse behavior, I've noticed. For example, the hitting of my daughter with the bat. While I don't think that action made him a "bad kid" or anything like that at all, I think it made him a curious toddler quite honestly, I don't really know why we excuse the behavior with that saying. It's just weird, no?

I'm not trying to get all hyper-feminist on us all either, because I actually do think that the true meaning of "he's all boy" is actually pretty legit. While I do see my daughter doing some "boyish" things - she's much louder than my son, looooooves wrestling, and scrapes her knees climbing in-conquerable dirt hills, I can recognize that these behaviors in their extremes are mostly found in young boys. Yes, when my son does any of the previously mentioned things (being aggressive, not thinking about consequences...) I do think that when it's not simply him being a toddler of any gender, it is the fact that he is reverting to his primal, caveman, idiot manhood.

I suppose at the end of all this, I have to say...1) I am glad I'm not a boy. 2) I'm glad my son is not "all boy" but...partially girl? Huh. He's kind and more often than not, thinks about how others will feel, smart, and sensitive. And 3) I need more adult conversation in my life.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Life is a battlefield

I want you all to know that I think of you often. Usually when something ridiculous happens in my life (i.e. taking the kids to the grocery store, making it all the way through only to find that I left my wallet at home, throw the kids back in the car, drive home, retrieve wallet, wait in line at the grocery store again, pay for food and buy two organic sugar free lollipops for my kids for being such good sports, driving through somewhere for dinner because it's now too late to start dinner at home without for-sure meltdowns, just as I order hearing Charlie scream as she tries to wrench her lollipop out of her hair...etc). I begin to write a blog post in my head, imaging how I would describe events, what photos I would use, and how I could best spell words my children use in their own "lisps" and trial and error ways (Evan calls juggling "Jungle-ing" and is frequently annoyed that I can't "jungle" like Daddy). I think about how to describe my neighbor to really get you to understand how absurd some of the situations I am put in are. And then I feel guilt and decide never to post about my crazy neighbor.

Obviously, about 1/1,000 of those posts actually happen as I take a peek at this dusty blog. But it sure would be fun to pick it up again.

I was thinking yesterday about my house and how very much effort it takes to keep it how I want it. My family can tell you, it is very rarely actually that way (how I'd like it). And as I was thinking about this, I realized that not only what I've said before is true - my career now is full time Master Re-arranger - but also that my whole life now is just a series of battles. I do not mean, however, that this is an entirely negative thing. Some battles are good, just still a lot of work and I end up near-dead by the end of the day, good battles or bad.

Keeping the house clean is a battle (closer to a war). Your bathrooms are fighting against you, Lord knows your kitchen is fighting against you. Laundry is like a beast you are constantly trying to fend off. It grows heads faster than you can fold, that's for certain. Your children are cute little gremlins frolicking around, scattering debris wherever they wander. I am thinking of writing a children's book/series...first one would be called It Only Takes a Cracker. You can probably guess the gist of the book. Sometimes your children at not cute little gremlins, but rather emotional monsters, throwing themselves and their 0-60 toddler emotions around willy-nilly for you to try to catch and console.

There are many more battles and I'm sure you have some of your own in mind. It can be easy to let those battles get you down, discourage you, or overwhelm you, I know it happens to me. When I was thinking about it yesterday, my kids were both napping (love the same nap time!) which is a coveted time in this house. I guard that time with my life. Usually I use the first bit to do Downstairs Damage Control, Feed the Laundry Beast, Finally Eat/Finish My Lunch, and General Pick-Up. And lately once that's done, I just sit on the couch, coffee and some snack that will kill me someday in hand, and watch my very own television shows. No matter how long or short it lasts, it is bliss. But I still end up feeling a little guilty. Kind of with that naggy feeling of, I should be DOING something.

But as I was thinking this yesterday, I took a sip of my thrice reheated coffee and thought, No. I will not feel guilty. Maybe my house is not spotless, and yes, if you tell me you'll drop by in ten minutes time, I will panic and move at 10x my normal speed to get the house ready, maybe my son's hair is not always tamed, and maybe there is a constant load of laundry either in the washer, dryer, unfolded, or waiting to be put away. YES. But, I am ok with taking some "me" time in exchange. I am really ok with that. I want to look back on this time and think, "My house looked decent. My family was fed home cooked meals 98% of the time, my children were healthy and clean, we had fun together, and I wasn't overcooked every day."

Sometimes I just need to sit out part of the battle for a Ho-Ho and coffee, and maybe a little British murder mystery. And it would be that time right now. Soooo. Talk to you later.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Adieu Facebook - you've been a wishy washy friend

Today I deleted Facebook from my phone. I am. Over. It. I've been talking about doing it for a while now, but it was a tough commitment to make. And yes, I do realize that I've only deleted it from my phone, not shut down my Facebook page altogether. Now I can only access it via computer though, which is a surprisingly rare occasion for me these days.

The reason it took me so long to give it the boot was that I kept telling myself, "Well, I like to keep in touch with people I don't see anymore". However, what struck me today was that 90% of my newsfeed is shared articles, videos, blogposts, and buzzfeed "23 Things That..." I told Scott that it should be called BlogBook or ArticleBook now. Clever, I know.

I also, despite my best intentions, often end up clicking on at least one of said links a day. A mistake, I assure you. Rarely has this ended well. More often than not I come away completely annoyed by some blogger.

Now, in the interest of discontinuing this trend, I will not complain about it any longer. It is what it is. I'm severely cutting back my Facebook-ing which means I've freed up a lot more time (and brain power) for my games...I mean reading. But mostly 2048. Addicteddddd.

Peace out Facebook. It's just me, Instagram, and Pinterest now.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

The new normal. And such.

The other night, after both kids had been tucked into bed, I found myself rediscovering the show Scrubs. I don't know whether or not you're a fan, but for me it brings back some great memories of college. Two of my dearest friends and I would spend hours of our free time hanging out at each other's apartments watching that show and eating junk. These are friends that I now am lucky to see and catch up with maybe once a year.

After watching a few episodes and chuckling to myself, I turned off the tv, washed the remaining dishes left out after dinner, and absentmindedly picked up some toys scattered on the rug. A Lego car, a teething toy, and a super hero or two. All of a sudden I found myself staring at the toys and thinking how bizarre it was to be transported one moment back to my college days, probably just started dating Scott,  putting off (then moaning about) studying for midterms that started 3rd week - and now here I was, not terribly far in the future, picking up my kid's toys like it was nothing. Kids. There's more than one.

How am I old enough to have children (again with the plural)? This led me to thinking about both those squirts and just how big of a chunk of your heart they take up. We have more than just a few friends that are either trying, struggling, or are unable to have children of their own. We were a couple, not too long ago that were bracing for that reality ourselves and yet God heals and has His own plan.

Sometimes I am a classic mom in a cliche moment. Evan woke up on the wrong side of the bed and is an emotional basket case, Charlie just squeezed a Pouch all over the floor, and I have to take a few deep breaths before I decide not to put them out on the curb. Those are not necessarily the moments that the words "lucky" or "blessed" come to mind. Then there are the quiet moments of bliss when they both are snuggling in my arms as I read them a story, or Evan is squealing in delight as Charlie-a-saurus and I chase him around the house, or they spontaneously show me affection.  And then I think, I do not recognize how very precious these darlings are often enough.

It's then that you weird then out by smothering them in hugs and kisses, tell them over and over that you love them and they try to wiggle away because they think you're playing "too many kisses" (yes, that's a game in our house).

Bottom line/point of the story: 1) Give your kids a squeeze and remember that you are blessed. 2) I feel old. 3) Scrubs is a fun show.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

It has been quite a while, hasn't it? Well, in case you didn't hear yet, I recently popped that baby boy out. And by "recently" I mean 4 weeks ago today. And by "popped out" I mean not popped out. More like worked very, very hard to get an 8 pound baby out of a very small hole in 7 hours.

I started having contractions Tuesday night (April 3rd - 4 days past my due date) just before midnight. I had been waiting so long to finally have contractions and go into labor that I waited a good hour or so before telling Scott what was happening. At 3am the midwife on call said that I was in active labor and that I could come in. 

3:30 we got to the hospital but had to wait in a Labor and Delivery room because all the birthing rooms upstairs were being used. The midwife on call came to check on me at about 4am and all I remember about her was that she was highly annoying and caused me a great deal of pain. She started asking me some dumb question when she came in and I didn't answer her since I was clearly in the middle of a contraction. Right when it finished my water broke so I hobbled over to the tiny bathroom to take care of business. When I finally came out she asked me how I was doing and I told her, "I think my water just broke". Her reply, "Why do you think that?" I don't remember my exact tone at this point but I do remember wishing I was physically capable of performing a round house kick to her face right then. I think I said something along the lines of, "Well, I just had a lot of fluid and blood come out of there and there really hasn't been much coming that way in the past 9 months"

She proceeded to check how far along I was and I believe it was at this point that I decided that I hated her. I shudder just remembering. Yeesh.

Well, I was 6 cm dilated - on my way. Just after this adventure they moved us upstairs. We had a wonderful, large room with a Queen sized bed and they were just filling the portable tub for me. Ahh. This was how it was supposed to go down. There is a very long blurry stretch in my memory of laboring for a few hours, about 3, before going into transition. Transition is what they call Active Labor, because before we were just cruising along being lazy I guess. It's usually when you are around 8 - 10 cm dilated, your contractions are longer, stronger, and closer together (joy!), and sometimes it's when the baby starts to descend. I might also call it Hell for short. I do believe there was a moment when I turned to Scott and told him something like, "Never again. This is horrible. We are adopting from now on".

Transition probably lasted about 2 hours for me and I thought I might just rather die. I was so tired and it took all of my concentration to not make noise and just breathe through the contractions. I really thought the...more colorful side of me might make an appearance at this time, but I think I was just so concentrated and tired that I saved myself. 

Finally the midwife (new one!), a midwife in training, and my AMAZING nurse (I would name my daughter after her if her name wasn't Berkley - she understood) came in and announced that it was time to push. I could not have been any happier. At last! I had heard so many stories about "I pushed three times and my baby popped out!" - really, how long could this take?

Well, about 25 minutes into pushing is when I think I started making, "Seriously?! What is he doing?!" comments. The worst part was with all the people in the room (Midwife, midwife in training, Berkley the Incredible, my mom, Scott, and my sister) after every push, I mean, every push, I would receive multiple, "That was so good Heidi! Great pushing!" to which I would perk up, "Oh yea? So is he almost out??" -- "Uh, no. We just caught a glimpse of the top of his head. But it went back" DEAR LORD. Stop telling me I'm doing such an amazing job if nothing is happening! The next time someone says how great it's going there better be a baby flying out.

45 minutes of pushing and finally, at 10:36am, my baby boy was born. Praise Jesus. I wanted to be alert and joyful but I was so tired, it was all I could do to remain conscious. 8 pounds 10 ounces, 21 inches long, full head of hair. I was in love. 

The worst part is, I can tell...I can already tell that although I have not forgotten how painful labor was (no drugs baby), I will somehow be conned into doing this all again. He's just so cute, I know I will want another one. Fortunately, the next one is supposed to be easier. And really, I had a pretty short labor. 7 hours is not that bad when I compare war stories. And now I have this:

10 pounds in this picture. I'm super in love and he is just the best baby. Such a good little spirit, he's hard not to fall in love with.

So that is the time I won't gross you out so much. But next time might also be at 3:30am while I'm up with him for a half hour. So...there may not be quite enough of a filter at that hour. Let's cross our fingers. 

Loving being a Mommy

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Baby Induced Madness or Nesting?

There are some projects that I've been working on. I've been a little hesitant to do too much because I know that once I start this ball rolling, it will be hard to stop it. And it turns out I was right. I've got the itch now and I'm finding it difficult to stop.

I'm making E a small collection of personalized onesies. Is that partially insane?

Does it help or hurt my case that I bought a range of sizes so he will fit them for the whole first year?

This blanket was actually not originally intended for Ev when I first started it. But as it turned out in the end, whether it's because I took too long to make it, or the baby moved states, it's Evan's now. I finally finished it and held onto it until we found out whether we were having a boy or girl. If it was a girl I would feminize it a little more, but as luck would have it, it's perfect for our little papa bear. I stitched his name in it last week when my craze picked up hot and heavy again. 

I can't help it folks. I am the girl that knitted scarves for all of her wedding guests as wedding favors/an alternative seating chart. I love doing this kind of stuff. If I had the time (and a rockin pattern) to make the onesies themselves, believe me, it would be happening. In my defense, we don't have a nursery for E yet so let's call this my version of nesting for now. I'm sure I'll burn out eventually....right?

If not, sorry husband.
Happy Day of Giving Thanks everyone! I hope you all are surrounded by people that you love and that love you!
h + e

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Oh babies

Today I spent my entire hour lunch break hanging out in the new infant room at work. Two little baby boys, both under 6 months I believe. Oh the chubby thighs, the toothless goofy grins, the cooing as they told me about their days...too much I say.

After I left that peaceful room I thought, If I just wasted an hour of my time completely entertained by these two babies I don't even know, then I am doomed when Evan comes along. He just gave me a little punch to confirm that.

The first time I (and we) felt him really move was three nights ago. We were laying in bed, ready to turn the lights out when I felt a little Hiyah! I heard it described best as the way you feel when your eyelid twitches and you can't control it. It is simultaneously the coolest and the weirdest thing I have ever felt. It honestly freaks me out a little bit if I think too much about the fact that it's a live baby making those movements. It's probably best to not have a panic attack about my unborn baby moving inside of me. But I just start thinking about Wrath of Khan, or the scene of The Matrix where they extract that bug from his stomach. Bleaaahhh...I just gave myself the willies.

In any case, I am still feeling great, a little preoccupied with work stuff, but ok. Still trying to wrap my head around the fact that we are actually going to have a real baby in 5 months. Just insane.
Guess I should get all my sleep in now :)