Today two things happened

#1, my doctor trip.

I  barely ever go to the doctor. It’s not like I made this choice consciously because I’m anti modern medicine (I’m not) but more because I don’t get sick that often (with anything stronger than a cold or tummy bug) and because I’m lazy. Is it important for a woman to have a lady-parts doctor? Probably, but I don’t have one (until today) and after Paige’s birth (hospital) I didn’t even go back for a post partum checkup (again laziness and because I was fine, right?) I didn’t even remember I needed a six week check up with my midwife until I saw the doula outside my house because she was seeing my neighbor for a home birth! Smooth move — in she came to do a tummy check and chat for a bit.

Something though, hasn’t felt right. I’m not a skinny gal by any means; I’ve got little legs and little wrists and the rest is bellies, hips and breasts babe-ahh. I’m proud of my womanly body, but this time around at 8 months post partum I look 5-6 months pregnant. Huge! And I’ve written about this before but since that last post it hasn’t gone away, and it started to bother me. Besides the fact that adorable little tee shirts and empire waist dresses are just not an option, I feel horrible both emotionally, and physically (hello back pain). I was pressing on my uterus area the other day and experienced some random bleeding, so I thought “it’s time, doctor time..!” and for the week leading up to my appointment I envisioned all sorts of horrific scenarios: was I dying? Did I have watermelon sized uterine fibroids? Would they have to remove my uterus?

Today I went to the doctor  for an exam. My 2 hour experience wasn’t horrific but I was reminded why I avoid this activity, and why I had a homebith. The first was that I waited over an hour to even see a nurse who did vitals..and after that another 30 minutes for a quick visit from a doctor who was nice, but impersonal. Is it childish I want to connect with my doctor? Anyway my uterus is not the size of a watermelon (whew) and I do have some serious stomach muscle separation and possible tissue0-issues so I’m going in for an ultra sound next week. The bottom line: nothing serious.

#2 a sad thought

This is the second half of my post.

While having paranoid fantasies about the state of my body, I thought about how I would feel if I was told “no more babes..”  My first thought was I’ll admit, relief — no more babes means I don’t have to live with the paranoia that I could one day find myself pregnant again. And my second thought was “and that would be such a bummer…”

I’m a two kid person, I really am. There are days I can barely maintain a level of sanity raising a 3.5 year old and an 8 month old. My car is the perfect size for two dogs, two children, and two grown ups. Now that Wyatt is crawling Paige is taking a little more interest in him as a play-thing and my days are a bit easier because between his amusing himself, and her pretend play I have chunks to do read  um be a housewife or whatever. Three kids would, and I quote FUCK US. But my friend is pregnant, and my favorite blogger is pregnant, and today I looked at this tiny pair of brown ballet flats Paige wore and I thought how sad it was that we are done.

The thing is while there’s so many reasons to have just one more, there’s so many not to.

My question for mommas (and poppas) please:

How many children do you have and would you want just one more?

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Ginger-baby

I am still working on beautifying this blog, so this sort of unpleasant wackiness will have to suffice for now.

Life has been the perfect sort of boring that comes right before spring starts and winter ends. We’ve been hanging out inside mostly but have ventured out on the few freakishly warm days we had for walks and man! I forgot one of the plus sides to living in an “urban” area is all the human friends, cats and pups you can meet just walking around the block. Makes me happy for spring and summer and all the outside fun we can have — we are thinking of doing another woodsy rental too, which will be nice. My kids need trees, creeks and STARS at night for at least a good chunk of summer.

We haven’t been ice skating with Paige since the first attempt but I’m sure we will go (indoor rinks!) at some point. It’s so odd that she’s just turning into such a big girl. Ice skating this winter, getting her first (!) real (!) bicycle this spring, wanting to climb trees, being so independent. It’s so bittersweet because I yearn for the snippets of freedom I’m starting to get as Paige is pouring her own juice or hosting a tea party for her dolls but I still remember when she was a babe. The days are long but the years are flying by…

We also started this momma/child Waldorf preschool class at The Magic Acorn which is a Waldorf-inspired space about 20 minutes from us. Could I be more excited? It’s the perfect gentle transition into “school..” The space itself is stunning – lots of natural wooden play-things, a doll station, play kitchen, soft silks hanging, and the best part is that it’s completely baby friendly too! Wyatt has a plethora of wooden rattles and rings to gnaw on, and there’s a changing station with a wool covering and supplies incase he needs a diaper change. The first day was free play, songs and finger plays, decorating a bag (Paige is a “leaf”) and having tea, homemade bread and fruit for snack. The most lovely 2 hrs! We go every Tuesday and I’m really excited about it because right now this is what Paige needs.

And my moon baby. We had a rough night a week or so ago thanks to a deadly combination of 4!!!!! teeth coming in on top and a bad cold. For the past 7ish months I’ve been blessed to not have to deal with a screamy-all night rocking session and I forgot how completely shitty they are. We rocked, he cried, I moaned knowing that 6am was looming and I was out of sorts-tired. Luckily it was just that one night and he’s back to being a stubby tooth happy almost crawling ginger babe.  I’m trying to enjoy his baby-hood because it’s sort of flying by and soon he’ll be mobile (more so than he is now) and trying to stick all of Paige’s glitter sticks in his mouth .

Life is pretty good at our house

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Love

Happy Valentines day! Some people think this Hallmark holiday is overrated but it doesn’t have to be overpriced pre-fix dinners and generic cards. A day to celebrate love, family, friendship…what’s wrong with that?  We have spent the morning thus far pigging out on cupcakes with heart shaped sprinkles, and later Phil will make us dinner and ice cream sundaes! My originally plan of hand delivering lavender seed paper valentines to our neighbors will have to be put on hold though (until later, or tomorrow) because our seed paper isn’t quite dry. I’ve got it in the sun room with the window open to speed the process up!

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What we do

I’ve been avoiding updating my blog like the plague. When I’m so hesitant to sit down and write I know it’s time for a change; a new layout perhaps?

Another change that’s inevitable is that our beloved babysitter’s leaving. She’s spending a month in Australia and moving (forever) to Denver Colorado. When you’ve spent almost a year getting to know a person, and when that same person has seen your son grow from a nugget who was born in the upstairs bedroom to this ga-gaing, almost crawling, little red hair cherub well…you feel sad. This gal has heard me fart, seen me in the morning with no bra/mascara under my eyes/slugging down coffee, and knows my many moods. To have to search for another person and establish a relationship that’s incredibly personal but also professional is daunting.

What do I even want in a caregiver for my babes? Someone who’s at least a little familiar with attachment parent, is okay with finger paints and bug hunts, who will love my children. Or children in general – to appreciate even the crummy moments for what they are and who will grin with me and talk about things while we work together. Just a few hours a week I need this person so that I can maintain sanity and creativity. Please?

In other news, things have been wintery here.  Paper snow flakes and paper hearts decorate our windows for the next few months (because even though that damn groundhog promises an early spring…I don’t believe it) and we have been making a mess of all the toys books and crafts in the house.  We’ve baked muffins, pretended to bring stuffed dogs to the zoo, and made some awesome lavender, chamomile play doh.  This came out so lovely that I think we are going to make another, much larger batch next week. I used Lusa Organics Cranky Pants essential oil, dried lavender, and a pinch of purple all natural dye.

In other news Wyatt is getting so large. He’s still very smily, except when he’s not. He likes to bounce, read picture books, and stealing spoons out of my hands to try to feed himself. Therefore most of the times I have a crusty, stinky baby that we all love very much. Can not wait for spring so may babes can run around in the grass together (because hopefully Wyatt will be mobile by the time the sun is shining)

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Italics

I promise one day I’ll stop being a lazy bum and will upload the pictures I have of us ice skating, doing projects and being silly.

We have been very busy getting snowed in. Some people are used to getting snow dumped on them for the majority of winter but it’s safe to say around here things get sticky. On my (narrow, urban-y) street the snow has no place to go so up it goes into huge ole’ piles that make parking/driving/walking exciting.  We have gone for a few walks that end up in snow angels, made an igloo in the backyard, made some sort of snow hill for the kids to go down on their bellies, and stayed inside a lot. Watching the Princess Bride, baking things, reading, and being sort of lazy. We did aventure out to see old friends, and meet new ones, and it’s been quiet and fun.

This morning Paige and I went to Disney Princess on ice. Now, before I go on about how much she squealed in delight yes I’m very well aware that at one point not too long ago I was very anti. Anti princess, Disney and the likes — but it’s safe to say I’ve given in. Paige loves monsters and tutus; princesses and warlocks; bugs and sparkly high heeled shoes. I’ve explained that while it’s all magical princesses can be strong and very kick ass and so our days have included some pretend play with (gasp!) toys that aren’t wooden and even (gasp) an Ariel swimming mermaid doll. They are bringing Paige so much happiness, and her Sleeping Beauty fits right in with her wooden knights, dragons and castle.

This past week has been a release for me. I do consider mysel a “natural” parent (whatever that really means..) We bed share, plan on homeschooling (unless I find the perfect nature-oriented Charter school) didn’t circumcise, are delaying or not vaccinating…but lately I’ve become relaxed. I think that motherhood these days is a competition but when it comes to the natural parent crowd, it can get downright ugly.  I’ve often joked that for someone who runs a natural parent’s group, I can be pretty much the opposite. Yep there’s me on the couch eating Doritos and drinking an iced cold soda, hi! I do feel I connect on a better level with a more eclectic mommy crowd, but I have seen so many things in my 3 years being on team mom that are just ugly.  It’s who breastfeed the longest, who makes their own baby food, and who has the most (or least) wooden toy collection, who’s doing this, or that. It makes me want to puke.

I want to surround myself with people that love me and all my imperfections. I don’t want to compete with anyone or FEEL like I have to

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To cook

Or not to cook it seems?

I have high hopes when it comes to cooking, but I can slack. The things that get in my way are all the normal stuff: exhaustion, a cranky babe that doesn’t want to be held or put down (imagine that!), and just plain laziness. One of my wishy washy resolutions was to cook more and I haven’t been living up to it so I’m turning to my blog. I am going to document what I hope to cook in one weeks time, and each week will come back to honestly admit whether I ordered Indian food instead of making my own chicken curry. As usual there will be no mayhem to my madness, and I will simply have a wish of things I hope to cook and bake, without attaching days or meals. This allows for some leniency and will make it more realistic to accomplish my little kitchen goals : )

Breakfasts for next 7 days:

Grain puff cereal with honey, vanilla cinnamon French toast, eggs, apple cinnamon muffins & fruit, yogurts and fruits (everything will rotate), bagels

Lunch for next 7 days:

turkey sandwiches, yogurt crackers and fruits, tuna melts! BLTS with avocado (rotate these) and we will eat out for a few lunches

Dinners:

Mini personal quiche with zucchini, turkey with mushrooms (rice and veggie), turkey burgers with sliced avocado, breakfast for dinner

That’s it for now, I am going to rotate the dinners to include leftovers, dinner out, and smaller things that I have pre-made.

Wish me luck but more importantly, share your meal plans!

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Teen Mom

I’m a young(er) mother. Most 26 year olds aren’t spending their days high fiving a 3 year old because she pooped on the potty, or their nights tending to a 6 month old who’s feeding on demand…but this is a choice I made. To be a younger momma who’s able to keep up with her kids and handle pregnancy with ease because biologically we are supposed to have our babes young, right? And we were finally secure enough for me to stay home, we had health insurance, family support and all that responsible, boring stuff. Because that “stuff” is important even if we all want to close our eyes and pretend that all you need is love.

And as a young(er) mom I sometimes find myself relating to the gals on teen mom. At 16 I would not have been prepared to raise a baby, and I hate the way MTV has glamorized teenage pregnancy. Yet (and I’ll admit I’m not too well versed on this) they started off with good intentions, no?  To show the world how completely suck-ass it can be to raise a baby when you’re a baby yourself…instead the girls are paid decently (for 16 year olds from South Dakota anyway) and are interviewed in Star magazine. We can pity them from afar but the truth is that we FOLLOW them – we give the show good ratings, scoop the magazines up when we see another train wreck teen story on the cover…So whatever MTV’s good intentions were, they backfired. Leaving girls all over this country idealizing teen pregnancy, all while providing a huge TV network with awesome ratings.

As the mother of a girl, I feel nervous. I am pro-choice as they come, and we are raising our kids honestly in terms of sex but it gets tricky. Too open, or too reserved are both equally horrible, so where do we draw the line? I don’t agree with birth control and the hormones that go along with it (that will have a backlash on the fertility of woman of the future..) so do I preach about condoms? The pull out method? Both of which are hardly full proof? And what about just waiting..but waiting for what? The right guy? Marriage? There’s so many questions that I simply don’t have the answer to but after watching the season premiere of Teen Mom 2 I’m…terrified. For my daughter, for the girls on that show who are had babies for the wrong reasons. Maybe they thought they could keep their idiot boyfriends around and live out the dream of a picket fence, or maybe they were just religious and don’t believe in abortion. Either way, wow. WOW man, and the pregnancy pacts and high schools with dozens of girls being knocked up?

Teen pregnancy isn’t anything new, but shame on MTV for making it something to strive for.

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Deep breaths

I am sitting in bed with my new glasses on (see below for the silliness that they are) thinking about the snow that’s coming. The kids are downstairs with Shelly (our babysitter, who’s amazing and lovely and so helpful in a hundred ways) and I am sneakily laying here under my down comforter with a mug of coffee feeling a bit inspired. Maybe it’s winter? My coziness? The fact that it’s going to snow another foot or so in the next day?

So here I am thinking. And what am I thinking about? Unschooling. The past two weeks I’ve made a schedule of activities, lessons and art projects I’d like to do with Paige. And each time one isn’t completed I feel sort of like a momma-failure. It hit me though, that we don’t need to have this “Monday we do this” sort of attitude. We can have a rhythm but still sort of unschool! And that silly little realization makes me so happy because sometimes things don’t go as planned (especially with a 3 year old…) sometimes you want to bake strawberry cake even though it’s Taco Night, and sometimes you are pooped from staying up with a babe and want to stay on the couch snuggled under a big blanket watching Shrek 3 instead of doing the letter A. So instead of having a daily list of things to do, I am going to make a weekly list. If we skip art on Monday that’s fine because there’s 6 other days in the week that will happily welcome a project. My list will not be huge, and I’m confident that this manner of planning will work much smoother for where I’m at right now. So it’s sort of like unschooling but with a little rhythm thrown in :) I have a new poorly colored sign on our wall that has a gentle rhythm to follow .. “nourish our body, nourish our minds, nourish our imaginations etc..” and it’s so inspiring for me.

Paige has been pooping for 3 days now, happily in the potty. I am so proud of her and as promised we are going to add a new pet to our zoo :) Something scaly, something that starts with a B…can you guess what it is!

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Pooping on up, #2

This morning I was in the bathroom and Paige asked if I could get her a pull up — I told her she needed to wait. After awhile I heard her sigh and she came in, opened her smaller potty we keep in the bathroom, and told me she was ready to go. And she pooped, and we all gave her so love and support after and she declared that it wasn’t scary! And she’d be doing it daily! And now she gets a pet :) Something small of course…

Which just goes to show that patience and love go a long way…Go Paige!

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Pooping on up

We still buy pull ups, and sometimes when we run out of those Paige throws on a diaper, stands in the corner and poos in it. Potty training was sort of a breeze; she goes to the bathroom solo, pees, wipes, washes her hands, comes out and goes right back to playing. Sometimes she needs me to turn on the light, sometimes she doesn’t mind peeing in the dark. She wears underpants out, and I don’t really worry about her having accidents in public because she’s that good.

And when it comes time to poo she can put on her own pull up, goes quietly, and we clean her up and it’s back to playing. She’s pooped in the potty once, and that might have been a fluke. A fart that woops! Turned into a turned and mass hysteria at our house because we thought this is it.

Everyone asks when she’s going to poop on the potty. When we have friends over they like to brag that their (younger) child has been going for months, so why can’t Paige? We have offered her anything from a bounty of fine chocolate to a pet. Any pet. She contemplates all of these bribes and quietly goes back to her pull up because she’s just not ready. And I don’t mind – let her take her time, until she feels comfortable enough to go on the potty. Let her have this because she doesn’t have anything else – she doesn’t stick things in her mouth, suck her thumb, ask for a pacifier or any of that weird stuff kids can do. She just doesn’t want to poop in the potty. Who cares, she’s not hurting anyone, she’s not hurting herself…so fuck off. Just fuck the fuck off and leave us alone

My husband (who barely changes diapers in the first place) is obsessed with getting Paige to poop in the potty. He offers the floor as a creative space to poop, and has cut holes in her pull ups so that it (oops!) falls on the floor and she can experience that. She has, she’s not impressed — friends take me aside and whisper so what’s going on here you think like there’s some psychological explanation for my daughters poop on the potty strike.  Isn’t it okay to take your time with something? Why do we have to make my daughter feel ashamed?

To the poop haters – back off! When she does go I will shower her in chocolates and scented stickers but until then — who gives a shit?