Monday, January 28, 2013

Definitely Unbalanced

So..I just have to take a minute to write a few things down.  Maybe so I can remember in a few years when I wonder what it was like to have four kids.  And one of them tiny in diapers. ; )

Ethan has had a fever since Friday, so he's in bed.  We knew last night that he'd need to stay home today since he was sick plus feverish.  He obviously feels pretty good since he was standing on his bed, slamming his door this morning.  He was looking down into the kitchen..and another slam.  I had to have a talk with him, and I put a book between the door and the jamb.  This way...hopefully no slamming.  

Mary Claire woke up with the same symptoms Ethan has had..sore throat, not so good.  She is also in her room (they are confined to their rooms now that there are two..and it must be contagious!).  They have televisions we've moved in there from other rooms (they normally don't have tv's in their rooms!), and I got a couple videos today for them to watch.

Carter had a well-visit (9 months) today, so I had to wake him up this morning, try to fill him with milk so he'd weigh a few ounces more, change him, and race to the doctor's office.  These days I'm always late.  It's really tough to plan for myself and for the kids.  There just isn't enough time in the day.  (Especially right before an appointment.  Time speeds up before appointments, and slows down those five minutes just before dinner.)

When I got there, they told me he didn't have an appointment.  Yep, I just randomly added a 9:10 appt. on the blue bears side onto my calendar for the fun of it!  Not.  So..they rescheduled us for 11:20, and they wanted to go ahead and sign me in (umm..I have plenty of other things to do for the next two hours! I came back home).

I made the kids some turkey and dumplings (since there was just a little bit of Christmas turkey left).  I used frozen dumplings since I thought it'd be faster, but then the layers all stuck together while my broth was getting hot, and I got so frustrated.  I was stabbing between the little sheets with a steak knife to try and separate them.  The cardinal rule is that they can't be two-thick or they make super tough dumplings.  I worked at those for a while while Carter got into Ches' bike (..and into the bike chain) (..and into the bike grease) (..and in his new shirt, the "Love Bandit" ready for the doctor's visit).  (It's super cute with a little gray raccoon that's wearing an eye patch with a heart on it!)

I got this new vacuum, the iRobot Roomba for Christmas, and he was cleaning up the floors and entertaining Carter while I was soup-making and opening windows since we are experiencing a miracle 70 degree day in January.  I visualize the fresh air sweeping out the nasty viral germs plaguing my kiddos.  Somehow, I know it's just in my head, but I love open windows.  Except when Carter digs his fingers into the "window gutters" where all the dirt, dust, and dead bug carcasses live.  I have to turn my head and visualize germs flying out the window.

Two hours later, we had this déjà vu experience.  We were back at the doctor's office..only this time?  We had an appointment.  Miracles.  I took him to the restroom to change his poopy diaper.  While I had him ready to change, I  heard the nurse call his name.  Lovely. ; )  I went on out there, and she processed us: strip him to his diaper, head circumference, length, and went out to weigh him (I'd already told her he needed to be changed!).  What's the worst?  Laying your poopy baby up on that scale.  I wiped and wiped, and put on a fresh diaper.

He is still in the lowest percentiles... Dr. asked about nursing, my milk supply (still fine, thank-you-very-much, I guess he's forgotten the two-month appointment when he told me to feed him less.), and told me that it wasn't criminal activity to give him formula if I wanted.  I told him I think formula stinks( in it smells bad.  would you drink it?)  He said it's not unusual for moms to supplement if it helps them nurse longer.  Two things.  Formula will end up decreasing your milk supply since there is less nursing/demand.  And how will that help you go longer(Has he not read all the books/pamphlets/websites?  You nurse more to make more.)  I am obviously willing to consider it since I bought some ready-to-drink formula at the store afterwards (I do usually wean around a year..and he only nurses well at home).

But the more I think about it..I don't think I'm ready to stop nursing quite yet.  I have to say eating all the extras would definitely come to an end.  I can enjoy steak with bacon on top (Saturday night), a brownie (Thursday), pasta (Friday night), and have relatively no regrets.  If I stopped..all those calories are mine alone!  And also?  I like being able to feed him late at night or early in the morning, all cozy, just us.  No bottle, no extra five minutes to make him something.  Just us.  And I like when he goes to sleep on me all comfy, with his fingers curled around my shirt.  He just relaxes right into peaceful sleep.

We went to the store after his appointment since I needed a few things (more tissues, cough drops, drinks, some lotion for eczema on his back.. and my first formula purchase.  boo.)  Maybe I'm worried formula means I can't do it all. (*Newsflash!!*)  Must investigate self further.

Anyway, he has no interest in nursing if we are out in public (in the van, in a restroom, dressing room, around friends, etc.), so he wouldn't eat when we got to the store.  I gave him some baby food, and we had a good shopping trip.  Except for the apples and chicken I discovered on my pants in the store.  And the green ink pen he lost on the fruit aisle.  I'd say it was still successful.  He stayed mostly inside the cart, the food stayed mostly inside the cart, and neither of us had tears. : )

I'm still learning to:
a.  use the restroom with a baby not in a car seat.  (They have to sit on your lap..then 
       what?)  And I couldn't wait any longer.
b.  wash one hand at a time.  dry one hand at a time.
c.  b.r.e.a.t.h.e when they wake up after a twenty minute nap, and I'm worn out from the
       last six hours!
d.  take care of two upstairs, sick, and one downstairs, well.  keeping all separated for
       their health.  and pray for the well one at school, that he remains well!
e.  balance my life.  I want a clean house and clean laundry, but I can't have it while
       meeting everyone's needs.  Every day there is a new priority.  And sometimes, it's
       just to make someone feel loved and comfortable.
f.  accept it when the pediatrician tells me I'm doing a good job, he can tell I'm an
       intentional parent, but now he can tell I'm more comfortable, and I've relaxed. what was I the last three times?

I'm super-imperfect.  Really trying to figure out four.  Well, trying to figure out life with four with some balance for me and marriage..and maybe manage some friends or down-time too?  I have learned it crystallizes what's important.  There is no more time for the frivolous or meaningless.  I'm fall-on-my-knees thankful for my health-I couldn't do it any other way.  Maybe I'm doing something right!

Hug your babies, ya'll!  These days don't last forever.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Brakes? Who needs brakes?

I have a free minute, heehee!  Well, it's after that's why.

It's super normal here..except for my van's brakes going out on Wednesday!  Just so you don't think our life is too perfect (SOOO far from it!), these things happen.  I was headed out on Wednesday morning, and I sat at a stoplight.  Slowly, my van started to creep forward.  Then, I pushed the brakes harder. went a little farther.  You know, when you are actually distracted, and the vehicle is moving? wasn't that!

I thought I was crazy, so I kept going.  Then, it kept happening!  I would push it slowly to the floor at every light, until I decided someone had cut my brake line!  (You know, being all dramatic and everything! haha)  I called Honda and told them I needed some help.  They asked how soon I could get it in (being all trying-to-avoid-death-and-lawsuit and everything!).

First, they were going to drive me home..  But I was all four-kids and lots-of-errands and it's-why-I-keep-a-new-vehicle to them..  Then, they were going to loan me a vehicle (a really smoky one!)..  Finally, I got a new loaner car.  Thankfully, it still had vinyl-lined floor boards since it was a misty-rainy kinda day.  And I have the three kiddos climbing in and out!

So..then I had to take Mary Claire to the doctor (HIGH blood sugars after ending an antibiotic the day before, changing her site, AND her dice.), and since flu is really bad here now, and I couldn't find a babysitter, the boys sat in the car.  Then we got a new (the THiRD!) prescription for her ongoing ear infection, and took the kids to PRE.  Ches and I shared some dinner with Carter, and I had ..wait for it.. a girls' night!  We are super wild and crazy and shared some hot chocolate and coffee! ; )

It was really nice to just sit and talk and catch up with the bible study girls since we haven't all seen each other in a long time!  

Anyway, I lived, and got the van back with a repaired master cylinder (I talk like I know all about them).  And? stops! (oh, and stays stopped!)  Yes, I totally researched the lemon law.  Don't worry, I got this. ; )

K, got a crying little one.  It's only's just getting started!  Hugs, ya'll!