Thursday, April 30, 2015

Mommy Moments

All week I've been thinking that I really need to record some of the moments I have with my kids because once they're gone, they're gone and I can't remember the specifics. I find myself so very busy all the time and yet when I look back it all blurs together. At the beginning of this week I had the specific thought , 'I don't have anything I have to do this week--nothing in the schedule at all--so I'll let it be all about the kids.' (not like it isn't otherwise... just a conscious effort kind of thing.) There have been so many darling things that I wished I could write down, but I am just a little too busy in the moment. I have been enjoying them so much more. A year ago things were pretty hard and I found it hard to enjoy my toddler at all. So on Monday we had ballet and we took Savannah with us (since her mom just had baby Evelyn 2 weeks ago). Afterward the girls played for a bit and had lunch at our house, and then Ben joined, and then Rose went to Savannah's house for an hour, and then nap time, and then dinner and FHE. By the way, FHE was one of my new year's resolutions. Have family home evening each week. So we had family night, and I actually prepared a lesson the day before about reverence. Rose really did well and paid attention and I think she got it. She has a hard time being reverent at church or any time, really. But the next time we had a prayer I reminded her about being reverent, and she folded her arms and closed her eyes. It was really sweet. Rose is so much more of a little girl now and has the sweetest little personality. I'm grateful I can easily enjoy her throughout the day, as opposed to struggling to keep my patience every single minute. Another sweet thing I love about her is how excited she is... just whenever something is slightly exciting. This morning when Finn was napping I said, "We're going to do a craft!" And she was SO on board and excited. And the best thing is she has no idea what a craft is! :) We went in my room and I was pulling out colored paper and supplies, and she RAN (she runs everywhere when things are exciting) to the kitchen to put our supplies on the table. She has such a cute run. It kind of has this bop to it, but it is a quick up-and-down bop because she has to move her short little leggies.

So anyway on TUESDAY I invited some friends to the beach. We met up at Moonlight around 11 and it was a really gorgeous day. Rose played with her friend "baby Finley" who is 20 months. They had a great time sitting in a hole in the sand and running around and playing by the water. Finn borrowed Finley's toys and was much more stationary than usual, which was nice for me. He just sat and played with the sand toys and was exploring this new place. I got to visit with Lindsey and Kate. It was beautiful and so enjoyable. We stayed till almost 2, then headed home for nap and shower. That was an exhausting day, and I think I might have tweaked a nerve from carrying 2 kids and all the stuff. It's been bothering me today. I might also mention that Finn has been getting a molar and his canines, plus another tooth on the bottom, so he's been coughing and waking up SO early, sometimes 4 or 5 am, and even 3 AM one day! GAH! It's been rough.

Wednesday I asked Rose what she wanted to do, and she said have a picnic, so while Finn was napping I got ready and packed a few little things. We had our picnic at Poinsettia Park and the kids didn't eat much, but enjoyed the park a lot. Finn loves to walk all over and pick things up and explore. He even climbs the stairs all the way up to the tallest slide, but then doesn't know how to get down. I have gone down so many slides with him over the last few months--more than ever in my life maybe. Finn is obviously easier right now because he entertains himself more. It is actually one thing I love about him right now--it is so funny and cute. He just loves to pick things up and carry them around. We had this book growing up... something about Roundabout Bears' Country Cottage where you had to open the flaps in all the rooms of the house and the wrong item would be there... an umbrella in the fridge, so you'd flip to the umbrella stand in the family room only to find a pillow, which needed to go in the bedroom, but on the bed you'd find a broom, which needed to go in the broom closet, only to find .... and so on. You had to "help" the bears put all their items away. I do this every day right now with Finn. He'll pick up one of my shoes, and carry it to another room. Later I'll see him walk by with the a saucepan lid (and he's just so little!!). Then I'll open the drawer by my bed and find an empty cookie box that I threw in the trash can earlier in the day. It's just so funny to me--like he's playing a little joke. He's slowly becoming a little bit more of a person with thoughts... I can tell he can comprehend SO much more. I had my shoes on and my purse yesterday, and he dropped what he was doing and did his adorable baby walk over to the front door, like he knew it meant we were leaving. And I think he's holding out on us too in the communicating department. I have been teaching him a few words in sign language but he doesn't really use them. Then one day Raimo gave him something particularly delicious... maybe ice cream... and immediately he began to sign "MORE" (with gusto! aka very rapidly). Another funny thing he does is he'll throw himself forward from standing to his belly and hands, like it's funny that he's falling down?!! over and over. He loves peek a boo and pat a cake and he wiggles a little when there's a good song. He won't dance on demand though like Rose would! He loves the freedom of walking and exploring. Anyway, back to Wednesday. Finn would not nap. And I knew he did not feel well. And it was such a hot day in the house and I was irritated or "hot and bothered." ***On another note, today when the home teachers were over, they asked how I was doing with the hot weather we've had. And I said without hesitation that it makes me hot and bothered. As soon as I said it, I thought, 'Oh man I think there might be a sexual connotation to that.' And yep, just looked it up and definition number one is sexually aroused and definition number two is aggravated. I really hope number two is more familiar to them. Unfortunately I don't think that is the case! Agh! Oops.*** But anyway, I was aggravated!!!!! So at 4 pm we got in the car and drove for 45 minutes and both kids fell asleep. I called Parker and caught up with him, then we came home and made dinner and kids went to bed. I went to Kate's house with Tess and Ashley and Heather, and she held a clothing exchange, and all the leftover clothes went to the women's shelter. I scored some really cute new things! We had a really fun night hanging out and laughing. It was much-needed this week. I am so lucky to have tons of young moms to be friends with and to share this phase of life with. It makes some really hard days a little bit easier.

Today we went to the YMCA, but got turned away because the infant center was full and I didn't make an appointment for Finn. Seriously annoying. So the kids played on the play set there for a bit then we headed home to do the craft (which I never mention was an American flag... and Rose calls it Camerican flag.) We were mostly dinkin around the house today. The kids did really well entertaining themselves. Rose is better at pretend play and will play with toys by herself more. And she plays with Finn sometimes--it's usually more physical than related to toys. They will chase each other or take toys from each other... you know brother/sisterly love. He loves to be chased! He can't run, but he kind of leans into his walk with his belly, arms out. I seriously love his walk!!! And we had a tickle fest in their room. Rose wants to be tickled and kissed just as much as Finn, and we have to make sure it's always fair. Their laughing is such a happy thing. Finn has such a little boy laugh--kind of low. I've got to get it recorded!!

I am sitting in the bath tub wishing I had a soaker tub with a reclined back. Mine is straight up. Why?? And I'm borrowing the kids' Tubby Todd bubble bath, and reaching out to type with my laptop on a chair. Tomorrow I've got an appointment at the YMCA at 8:30, so hopefully I make it on time. We're also planning on swimming, and I will try to find time to go to the grocery store, hopefully by myself!! And Saturday we are going to the temple. So this has been a really full week. A very family week, right? Also, we've entered the McDonald's phase of life. I really don't like the food, but it was so worth it last Friday to get that happy meal with the toy and sit next to the play place with my diet coke... So here we go.

Another thing about Rose. She has an Idaho accent sometimes. Not learned. It's just her:
knives=knifes (accent on the 'e')
she still says "lellow" for yellow. I'll be so sad when that changes
Camerican flag!
Popsicle- Lopsicle

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Kindness begins with me

I just want to save this article for another day. It really hit home and breaks down how kindness is so key in marriage... But in a specific way. Not in trinkets or back rubs ( gifts and back rubs still accepted!) but in interactions. Showing interest in your spouse, being happy for them and appreciative of them. Who knew this stuff would not always come naturally? It's a really great article. I think most of us do a really good job of being kind to friends and associates but over time stop doing it for our spouse.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Samba Gold 2 Class Routine

Fun memories of taking classes and practicing in the KMB, before we even got married!

Paso Doble class routine

Five Poems

I picked up a book of poetry today (gasp!) and I got a kick out of this poem since we live on the first floor. The first line really nabbed me :)

The People Upstairs

The people upstairs all practice ballet.
Their living room is a bowling alley.
Their bedroom is full of conducted tours.
Their radio is louder than yours.
They celebrate weekends all the week.
When they take a shower, your ceilings leak.
They try to get their parties to mix
By supplying their guests with Pogo sticks,
And when their orgy at last abates,
They go to the bathroom on roller skates.
I might love the people upstairs wondrous
If instead of above us, they just lived under us.

Ogden Nash

 I don't think I've ever mentioned our upstairs neighbors. They have actually been very good to us. Louise and Joe are an empty-nester couple and are always bringing toys and treats and balloons for Rose. And I think every time I start to play the piano, they open their slider wide and sit on the patio. Fan club! But we do hear a lot of their activity up there, from footsteps at 4 am to hammering nails for artwork to running the garbage disposal. But to imagine those noises coming from the two of them doing ballet... is too much!!!

This makes me think of how special it was when it rained when I was little. It didn't happen often, but it was always so exciting:


John had
Great Big
Boots on;
John had a
Great Big
John had a
Great Big
And that
(Said John)

A. A. Milne

I think this one about love is pretty funny:

Falling in Love is Like Owning A Dog

First of all, it's a big responsibility,
especially in a city like New York.
So think long and hard before deciding on love.
On the other hand, love gives you a sense of security:
when you're walking down the street late at night
and you have a leash on love
ain't no one going to mess with you.

Love doesn't like being left alone for long.
But come home and love is always happy to see you.
It may break a few things accidentally in its passion for life,
but you can never be mad at love for long.

Is love good all the time? No! No!
Love can be bad. Bad, love, bad! Very bad love.

Sometimes love just wants to go for a nice long walk.
It runs you around the block and leaves you panting.
It pulls you in several different directions at once,
or winds around and around you
until you're all wound up and can't move.

But love makes you meet people wherever you go.
People who have nothing in common but love
stopr and talk to each other on the street.

Throw things away and love will bring them back,
again, and again, and again.
But most of all, love needs love, lots of it.
And in return, love loves you and never stops.

Taylor Mali

My introduction to this poem was actually a song that I sang once--it had kind of an Irish sound to it and I loved it for all the beautiful imagery and mystery.

The Lake Isle of Innisfree

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

William Butler Yeats

I like what "bee-loud glade" does with consonants when you say it out loud. And the rhythms of "midnight's all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow" and "linnet's wings". I could not make a place sound so colorful and lovely! And I like the idea of having that place set aside and that I can return there whenever I want to.

And lastly, Jack Prelutsky is so fun.

Today is a very boring day

Today is very boring,
it’s a very boring day,
there is nothing much to look at,
there is nothing much to say,
there’s a peacock on my sneakers,
there’s a penguin on my head,
there’s a dormouse on my doorstep,
I am going back to bed.

Today is very boring,
it is boring through and through,
there is absolutely nothing
that I think I want to do,
I see giants riding rhinos,
and an ogre with a sword,
there’s a dragon blowing smoke rings,
I am positively bored.

Today is very boring,
I can hardly help by yawn,
there’s a flying saucer landing
in the middle of my lawn,
a volcano just erupted
less than half a mile away,
and I think I felt an earthquake,
it’s a very boring day.
Jack Prelutsky

It's a regular Sunday and we're headed to church at 1. I remember thinking as a child that Sundays were boring, but now I enjoy the slowness and the chance to refocus my life spiritually, and spend time with family and have Sunday dinner. Really... Sunday dinner!!! Tonight I'm making grilled turkey apple melt sandwiches with fries!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

On not going anywhere

I struggle with the feeling that I am not going anywhere. Physically or metaphorically. Life used to be measured by my moving from one place to another, or from one thing to another. Performances, academic accomplishments, paychecks, auditions, rehearsals, new addresses, new wards, new relationships, new hobbies, new kinds of fun, new chapters in my life's book. I've entered a new chapter, but I feel like I'll be staying in the same chapter for such a long time. With no foreseeable end in sight, the day to day tasks can be a little dull. Not because I don't like being in my home or with my children, but because it is hard to see the progression, successes, accomplishments, or any kind of movement in motherhood. It all takes place pretty much in the same place with the same people. It involves a certain level of homebody-ness just because that's the nature of life with small children. There are a lot of repeats, no way to measure growth or change other than the number of diapers changed in a day or the weight of each of my children as the months pass.

I read that with each birth, new mothers may have to allow a period of transition to let go of their old life and accept the new one they are in. The transition with my first child was the greatest adjustment. No more personal time, no more time spent doing my hair, no more dancing or competing or activities of any kind really, not even time to eat a peaceful meal by myself.

With my second child, the old life included the easiness of getting in the car to go to Target. It included the ability to have my child bathed and dressed well every single day. It included all household chores getting done. It included some slow lazy days when I was actually kind of bored. The new life I had to accept was different. It meant no easy trips in the car anywhere ever. The children are not always dressed as I would like or with hair nicely combed. There are never lazy days, but there is also new joy.

Now that Finn is 13 months, we are entering another slow phase where I am filling my days with mundane tasks that are not quite as urgent or hectic as they were in the "newborn" days. Rose is almost 4 and is acting more like a little girl rather than a toddler and is inquisitive and interested. My children are always delightful to me, but right now they are more so because they are both in an easier phase than they were a year ago. And I should probably be grateful! And I am! But I am also very much feeling that slowness and am itching for something new or for more projects to tackle. Every day is very full, but I feel like the days are slipping by in some strange way, like I'm not really living--I'm just kind of existing. Does that sound weird? I am very goal-oriented, so it helps to revisit some of the long and short term goals I made. Like... is this a good time to take up the violin? Probably not. How am I doing in all those various categories I wrote about? Maybe I could take that class. Should I go to another audition?

I am not a homebody at all. I like going places and getting out in the sunshine and having a reason to get dressed for the day. But there is a lot of time spent at home as a mom... who'da thunk?! I really miss going out on Friday and Saturday nights, being out and about in the car with the lights of the dashboard glowing, having had a chance to get dressed up and go relax or go out to eat. And then I remember how lucky I am to be a stay-at-home mom and that I can be there for my children while they are little. I am grateful. I am. This is just an ever-present feeling for me. I have to make a conscious effort to stave off feelings of restlessness and fill my life. I had a counselor tell me to that you can fight depression by listening to music, getting outside, exercising, and doing service. I try to do all of them as much as possible. They seem to help. One day I was running on the treadmill and listening to music, and I was thinking how I was doing what she suggested... and then I realized the irony in the fact that I was running... and I still wasn't going anywhere!

Anyway. These are wonderful days that I know I will look back and remember fondly for the rest of my life. But I still feel like I'm not going anywhere.