Monday, April 21, 2014

Forever Spring Breaking

Yes, kids are a lot of work. They also cost a lot of money. They very slowly (or suddenly) suck away every ounce of energy and sanity we have. And yet, after spending extra time with Dylan this past week- all I want is Spring Break FOREVER. 

I almost forgot how much fun it is to stay home and look after Dylan. He has a favorite book that he shoves in my face and asks me to read over and over and over again. I've memorized the book at this point but the climbing Dylan does to sit on my lap before we read is something I'll never get used to. It feels just as special every time. And his personality! Oh my. The kid is a legit toddler who loves running around, being chased, saying hi to everything (the park, his blanket, the mirror), kissing, acting silly, going down slides, and spending time with mommy. Yes, he loves spending time with mommy. I almost forgot how difficult it can be to leave him all day because I'm practically use to it. 

However, the fact I was dreading my return to work last night makes me feel somewhat elated. Elated that I had such a great time bonding with Dylan that I'm not ready to pull the plug on the fun. But life is calling so I better answer, even though I want to pick up the line and shout “SPRING BREAK FOREVER” right before hanging up. I’m going to miss my little big boy today…is it time to go home yet?

Thursday, April 17, 2014

1 Year Olds: They're Actually A LOT of Work

Dylan's school daycare does something very funny: they go on a week long Spring Break. Perhaps this is common amongst child cares but what a rip-off! Not only do I still have to pay for the week their "closed," but if I still want him to attend I'll have to pony up an extra something bucks an hour. So instead of paying top dollar, I took the time off for a little mommy/son bonding and WHOA! Watching Dylan is actually a lot of work. My husband and I are both home on weekends and I didn't realize how helpful that is when it comes to supervising/feeding/making sure Dizbaby doesn't take down the house. Single parents, stay at home parents, and actually just parents generally, my respect goes out to you. Maintaining your sanity in a world of "no's," furniture climbing, counter reaching, and general envelope pushing is a master skill. My brain is practically jelly at this point and we're only on day two. It's amateur hour all day long and my little terrorist shows no signs of slowing down.

But it's all good. Extra time means less rushing to make him quality meals and more time spent outdoors. And an added bonus? I can actually put my phone down and take photos with a real camera. So pardon my brief bloggy neglect- for the next few days, Dylan's running the show.

Monday, April 14, 2014

I'M the Baby!

There's really no excuse for it. I live in the adult world with adult interaction five days a week, from the moment I get into the car at 6:40 am until 3:20 pm when I pick up Dylan from daycare. And yet still, even after hours of communicating in complete sentences, conducting myself professionally, and being mindful of my space, I am becoming a baby. A big, fat, baby.

My big baby devolution would make a lot more sense if I were with Dylan 24/7, if I were a stay at home mom, or if I had little to no adult interaction. But oh contraire! Dylan’s infectious mannerisms defy time and space and can be caught regardless of buffers, barriers, or grown-ups, oh my! Any efforts made to resist rug-rat living are worthless, and here’s the proof:

I don’t want to eat pancakes unless they are shaped like silver dollars, which I now call “silver cakes” (because babies love having nicknames for nicknames).

Apparently, said silver cakes don’t require utensils. Fingers work just fine! My pincer grasp? On point.

Everything is a celebration. You’ll know when somethings good, exciting, or has simply just been announced because I’ll clap about it. Dinner time? YAY!!!

I want to play, too. My woe is me “I’m short” complex has been completely wiped out by my ability to sit and ride on Dylan’s toy car…all through the house.

The fact we have 13 bouncing balls of all types sitting around at home is not good enough a reason to come back from the grocery store without one. If I see a ball, I’m going to get it…

…and blame it on Dylan.

Tongue clicking, exaggerated sounds, and talking to oneself are just a few of the auto-pilot mannerisms you’ll catch me doing these days, especially when alone. 

And to think, my regression is quickly advancing without constant Dylan exposure. So going forward, just call me Tot-Mom. Not because I have a toddler, but because I have become one.

Friday, April 11, 2014

I Hope We Can Still Be Friends

I want to be all peaches and cream with well wishes and support for everyone, especially for those that are well-wishing me. I want to [strictly] harness positive energy and squash any and all negativity without paying it any mind, like some sort of jolly giant that doesn’t see the bugs in its path as it crunches along. But despite my all-smiles nature and happy ambitions, my dark side is legit. When I’m crossed, when I’m cheated, when something just ain’t right, I’m striking like lightening and chasing like thunder…which is really just a fancy writer’s way of saying I’m a bitch, yoooow. 

Please know I’m not malicious- just a feeler! I feel things immensely and my passion knows no bounds. It’s responsible for my disdain towards Wal-Mart, demise of friendships, this post, and the reason I hid the “12 Years a Slave” DVD from my husband for a week (it will ruin me). One time I was so rattled by seeing a businessman throw trash on the ground from his parked car, I marched over to him, picked it up, and asked him why he was such an inconsiderate pig (ouch). And now that I’m a mom and have this incredible love for another human life like none I’ve ever known or understood, there’s a whole new set of triggers that will take me to the dark side. So in advance, I’m sorry.

I’m sorry because I only give a couple passes. And I only recently realized that the blogosphere isn’t necessarily a safe environment from my wrath. I mostly get along with everyone from all walks of life but damn! I was reading/following a seemingly nice mom’s blog for a couple of weeks when I realized, WHOA- she’s freaking evil. I’m a big proponent of adoption…especially older children The thought of a baby/child/person not knowing a parent’s love kills me and I want everyone to feel special, protected, and to know that they are somebody’s baby. So when I read this person going on about the hollow relationship and lack of love toward their step-child because they didn’t have the “physical connection,” I was taken aback. I wanted to like this person. I continued to read past entries, looking for a bit of honey to coat my throat that was just itching to say something- but I didn’t find any. Instead, there were more and more entries about how annoying, inconvenient, and upsetting this child was making her. 

I bit my tongue (it’s still bleeding). I don’t want to start some sort of war of words, hurt anyone’s feelings, or go here, there, anywhere. I’m just a working mom from southern California who is as imperfect and makes just as many mistakes as anyone else. 

So to the mommy who is out there struggling with their step-mom transition, please know that I forgive your blatant disregard for your step-son’s very important presence in your family. But if you continue to declare reinforce that your relationship with him will never know love, and that a bond is “unrealistic” and “will never happen,” please know that forgiving your worst self is a journey on a long and guilty road. Save yourself the mileage and sort that shit out. You guys still like me, right?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

My Favorite Manipulator

There is nothing in the world that Dylan won’t kiss these days. My little big boy went from being the meanest baby to the sweetest little cream puff in all the lands. His highchair tray? Kiss. The park’s sand? Kiss. My leg? Kiss. The result? A happy momma. But hold it right there- all this puckering up is becoming a problem…and it’s my fault. 

I’ve documented Dylan’s cut-throat demeanor and mean baby attitude many a time. Even though he was smiling before he was born, the second he popped out and had a social security number he felt entitled to space and independence. So I was beyond thrilled when I mastered the trick to unlocking Dylan’s sweet lovin’ – SNACKS!!! The concept of exchanging a kiss for a snack seemed genius harmless at the time. I mean, all I had to do was ask if he wanted a cookie/cracker/cheerio/whatever, and suddenly his head would rest on my shoulder; he would stretch out his arms and hug me; or I would be graced with little pecks of pure heaven. Alas! The good life had arrived. 

But Dylan learns fast. Once he figured out I was after his kisses, he upped the ante. The silent pecks became kisses with smack sounds- he wanted his affections to be heard, noted, and praised. (Swoon!) Like when I remind him to “be nice” to the dogs he’s torturing, he bends over and lays a big smackaroo on whichever dog he is harassing playing with while watching me to ensure I’m a witness. “See mom, I’m nice,” says the eyes of my deviant toddler. And as cute and sweet as it is, the kid is working me. 

Dylan’s in the touch, explore, and investigate everything stage, which puts me in the no-no-no-no phase. His solution? Kiss me. No, he cannot pull out the safety plugs covering the electrical outlets. So he kisses me and tries again. No, he cannot crawl inside the dog crate…so he kisses me and hopes I changed my mind. He’s figured me out, sized me up, and knows I’m not gonna deny a first class ticket to pucker-town. At this point, it’s only a matter of time before I’m named “pushover of the year.” I gotta admit- the kid is good...and I’m scared.

Monday, April 7, 2014

A List of 6 Badass Bloggers - Part II

This is my second installment of Badass Bloggers; if you missed my first batch of badassery, you can check them out below:

It’s no secret that bloggers love fellow bloggers, and sometimes I get lucky and stumble upon a blog that blows my mind, speaks to me, or simply makes me happy. In honor of these dreamboats I have decided to periodically share a list of bloggers that stand out. If you have a favorite blog that you'd like to share with me, please do so in the comments and maybe they will be featured on my next list! 
Tamara – Tamara Like Camera     A lot of you are already going to know the comment Queen Tamara because she’s all over the blogosphere! She is sweet, real, original, a mother to 2 kids + one [puppy!] dog, and is a super talented photographer and published writer. One day she and I are going to meet and I’m going to go all fan girl on her.

Becka – Probably Crafting     When Becka isn’t writing funny blogs about her kids’ nerf wars, she’s sewing dresses for her toddler that I wish were in my size, crafting, and offering other bloggers CRAZY valuable how-to tutorials for blogging. (Which she should charge for but doesn’t, so how sweet is she?) 
Betty – A Gut and a Butt     I never know what to expect when I visit Betty’s Blog, it’s exciting. Betty has embarked on a “Firsts” campaign and is constantly trying new things which are some of my favorite stories- like trying coffee for the FIRST time EVER. Recently she visited Bell University and listened to 80 year old Holocaust survivor Eva Mozes Kor recall her accounts as a patient of Dr. Josef Mengele. 
Echo – The Mad Mommy     Echo is going to make you laugh, hard. I’ve told her many a time that she is the queen of meme/gifs because she has a great niche for using them to explain ANYTHING. The result? The funniest blogger I follow. She’s the person you want to talk to when life comes crashing down and you desperately need a smile. 
Jen – Jenerally Informed     Jen’s blog is so fun! She has Manday’s wherein her husband takes over her blog, she asks readers to pick projects on pinterest for her execution, she shares her famous banana bread recipe, will tell you why we should bring the 80’s back AND show you how to make slime. 
Nina – Sleeping Should be Easy     Nina’s blog is packed with advice on topics ranging from keeping your kids unmaterialistic, building a long-term relationship, why being a working mom doesn’t suck, etc. Practical, realistic, and helpful.