laborofwonder

Where Whine Meets Wine

Mom Challenge


Do you ever have one of those dreams where everything feels so real, and something happens that wakes you up either feeling very a) happy, b) sad, or c) mad? Me too. In fact, I had one of those dreams last night. And I woke up furious. And the fury was directed mainly at the hubbyman (who luckily for him, had already left for work). At first I was confused as to why I was so angry with him. I didn’t immediately recall the dream and I was trying to think of anything to happen recently that would cause that kind of affect. And slowly I remembered the dream. Whew. At least I don’t have to spend any more time being mad at hubby for something he didn’t do. (Or do I stay mad because of the potential that it’s something he could/might do at some point, some day? Hmm… no, I won’t. That sounds like a lot of useless effort, and I haven’t even had my coffee yet.) No, he didn’t have an affair, or leave me, or anything like that. And I don’t remember all the specifics, other than he volunteered me or something, saying that I would sit down and do it and not be allowed to leave until it was done. And man did that cause a scene. Maybe because I got up, yelling and stomping like a 2 year old and fled the perfectly lovely dinner we’d been having with some family members… in my dream, of course.

Well, I decided not to hold hubbyman accountable for his actions in my dreams. (You’re welcome, my dear. I’m generous, I know.) So I put on my big girl pants, and went about my business. My business being primarily of the homemaker variety. I cleaned forever, I did mountains of laundry, and I even discovered that there is actually carpeting on the floor in my children’s bedrooms! Who knew?! The day was not going so bad, considering my mood at its start. My biggest boy even gave me a moment of reprieve with his wit: Whew, it’s a good thing I turned to five now. Five is a big helper, and it looks like you need a lot of help around here. (he says as he looks around…hey, he’s not wrong.)

*Just as I typed the last sentence, the computer decided to no longer be connected to the internet (something it decides to do more often then it decides to connect)… and my children were left alone with my laptop while skyping with their cousin (*cough* hubbyman *cough*), and knocked it off the desk or did who knows what to it, so that now the screen lights up an array of beautiful colors, but that is it. (Sad face) When hubbyman got me the computer, he had enough presence of mind to buy the extra warranty, so this week we’ll be bringing it back (it’s only 6monthsish old) and hopefully we will come home with a new, working laptop. And then I can get back to blogging. In the meantime, I’ve been deep cleaning all of the bedrooms, and more. Today, well, this week, it will be the office area. Which means the filing. Deciding which papers can be tossed, shred, or kept for forever never to be looked at again. I also have Biggest’s birthday party to plan this weekend. One I thought we weren’t going to have (after setting a date up, hubbyman decided he didn’t want to do it… but grandparents vetoed and we’re back on!). Needless to say, I have lots of planning going on! Hopefully, the internet fairies will be on my side and I’ll still be able to do some posting in the next couple of days (I’m going to want to share all the fun things for his birthday party… I love kid birthday parties!) ! Until then, I’m going to share this with you. I tried to print out just a couple of them, but the printer decided I needed 5, so this will probably be posted all over the house (I’d planned for the fridge, bathroom, and bedroom, but maybe I’ll post it on their doors as well!)… it’s terrific! And I think even the best mothers can use the reminder to parent with purpose every day, and I think this will do that. Check it out!

(clicking on the picture will bring you to the page! be sure to go check it out and print out a copy for yourself!)

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On This Day (I Thee Birthed)


I had been having inconsistent contractions for a month. My mom had flown in to join us as we awaited our little man, unknowing it would be weeks of waiting. I had to sit in a very awkward position just to breathe, as his little legs were jammed up in my ribs. I went in for a baby check and my dr. wanted to induce  in a couple days. Fluid levels and everything looked fine. I even packed my bags and headed to the hospital a few days later for the induction. I never had a sense of “this is the day my baby will be born,” but I probably had just always imagined being in labor when I came to that conclusion. After being checked and hearing a brief summarization of what their plan was… I packed up my bags and went back home. I was told they’d “give me” another week but no more. (To which I stubbornly stick out my tongue and say pbbthhhh.) And it didn’t matter. A couple days later, after a full day of walking the beaches, picking up shells, and doing some shopping along one of the cutest little seaside towns you’ve ever seen…I had regular contractions. In fact, I sat down while my mom and hubbyman browsed in the final shop of the day. This was 9 days after my due date, they both had pretty much given up on the idea I’d ever have this baby, but I just knew this was the start of the path that would lead me to my baby.

the "bump" is him sticking his little booty out

Almost 24 hours later, he arrived. And life has never been the same. And I wouldn’t have it any other way!

My dearest firstborn,

I love you. I love the way your eyes dance when you laugh. The way you furrow your brow when you’re trying really hard or trying to figure something out. I love the way you give hugs- especially your bear hugs. Even if I don’t always appreciate that they knock me over. I love the way you talk to your siblings, at least most of the time. Besides, who else would show them to tell them how to be an animal that jumps like a frog, roars like a lion, and whimpers like a puppy?  Or how to scale furniture and then leap off? Who would show them how to make the biggest  fort? Or teach them not to be afraid of the dark, because you think the dark is fun. Or how to say your prayers. How to use your manners, how to brush your teeth. The things you are teaching your siblings whether intentionally or through example, is amazing, and we are thankful for it. Almost all the time. I am thankful for YOU all the time. Your sweet spirit, your love, your cuddles, and even your sense of adventure. I am so proud to be your mama.

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The Boy That Named Me Mommy


Tomorrow, my biggest boy, my oldest child, my Big E will be turning 5. There has been so much fit into such a tiny time space, so much that it has flown by in the blink of an eye. Just another thing you can add to the “Things My Parents Were Right About” file. It does go by in the blink of an eye. His pregnancy felt like it took forever, while we were waiting his arrival (thank you hyperemesis gravidarum for months spent on the bathroom floor and ER rooms). Once he was in arms, it was as if the pregnancy had flown right by.  Before I knew it he was crawling, then walking, talking, climbing, destroying (he was formerly known as The Master of Disaster). And here I sit, five very short years later.

Here are some of my favorite things about the boy who turned me into a mother:

  • He loooves Chinese food. He refers to sweet & sour chicken as “the chicken I like.” In fact, his favorite restaurant is also my favorite. (Score one for mommy!)
  • He looooves his siblings. He and MissE always climb into bed with me first thing in the morning. (Littlest is already next to me at that point.) And he always says, Can I watch Littlest while you get ready? And while they may fight like brother and sister, they are well on their way to growing up to becoming much like my brothers & I are- best friends.
  • He is a fantastic helper. He was just 18 months old when Miss E was born, and while looking back we feel badly that we missed (and he too, for that matter) the end of his “babyness” and overnight he turned into a little boy, helping to fetch diapers, and throw away dirty ones. He now takes the cups off the table and puts them in the fridge to “save” their drinks for  later. And I have never once asked him to do this, he just does. And he gets them out too. He puts away the “kid dishes” (they have their own drawer within reach to set the table and put them away.) when they’re clean, and gets them  out when it’s time to eat. And he’s frequently found in his brother’s cross-hairs for not letting him get into something (like the toilet) when he wants to. He also is the one who lets the dog out first thing in the morning.
  • He loves learning. Whenever we get his school things out, he is excited and willing. And he catches on quick. It’s amazing to watch him learn to write and grow into someone who’s thinking about why things are the way they are.
  • He is a feeler. Out of all 3 of our kids, his temperament is the closest to my own. He does not like it when you are upset, especially with him. And he is quick to notice if someone is not talking to him, or even looking at him, in a way that promotes smiles and laughter. And his attitude generally corresponds those he’s interacting with. If you’re happy, he’s happy. If you’re cranky, he’s cranky.
  • He is a snuggler. He’s good about bed time, although he needs a long wind down period. But if he had it his way, he’d just cuddle his way to sleep. Just last night I heard him whispering for his sister, when everyone else in the house was asleep- long past his own bedtime. I went in and he was just laying there and simply asked, could we cuddle just for a few minutes. I laid down, and he promptly rolled over, threw his hands around my neck, gave me a kiss, and said I love you, Mommy. Goodnight. And then rolled over and went to sleep. (This is another area we are similar. I want a quick snuggle and reassurance before sleep, and then roll over to my own space.)
  • He has a huge, vivid imagination. We often joke that he is a one kid zoo, because you can never be sure what animal he’ll be at any given moment. He can make up the most interesting stories. (My brother stopped by for a visit during Christmas time and was pulled aside to tell him a “secret” story that included Santa, a dragon, and things turning into bacon and being eaten. I only wish I could remember the details. It was hilarious and so imaginative that when recounted to one of my other brothers, he thought for sure we’d made it up instead of the boy.)
  • While he wants a birthday party (and I’m not sure we’ve settled on an outcome of that), what he really wants for his birthday is for hubbyman and I to take him (and only him) to a movie. So tomorrow we are packing the kids up, dropping Miss E and Littlest off with their Tia (Auntie), and taking him to the place with the chicken he likes and a movie. I think hubbyman and I are equally as excited about this. Or at least I am. While hubbyman and I frequently rotate taking kids on errands disguised as dates (they don’t care where we go as long as it’s one-on-one), I cannot remember the last time we did anything with JUST our biggest boy. Littlest gets those times when the bigger ones go on “dates” with Uncles, or Grandparents, and sometimes we have just Miss E and littlest, because the Big Boy is always up for going and doing something, and is always fine with doing an overnight (in fact, when we go to hubbyman’s parents’ home, he’s disappointed when he finds out that we’re staying too.).

Hubbyman had a “boys’ night” this weekend, and I found myself thinking that it’s so strange to think about the lifetime ago that 5 years was. I wasn’t a mom yet. My idea of a fun Saturday night did not involve playing numerous games of Madagascar or Sesame Street on the wii, nor did it involve strange editions of candy land followed by movies of the cartoon persuasion. But there I sat, after a night of just me and the kids, playing games, laughing, and loving. And thinking about what a great night it was.

the day before he was born we walked the beach, picking shells

5 years ago, I was 41+ weeks pregnant, thinking about how my back hurt beyond belief, my ribs were bruised from the inside, and that the little boy inside me was never going to come out. 5 years ago, I had no idea how my world would be flipped upside down, or that my eyes would see everything in a different light. Just goes to show you the difference one day can make. I had no idea that 24 hours later I would be holding the sweet, perfect little person who not only made me a mother, but taught me how to be Mommy. And to love almost every second of it.

the day before Big E was born

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