Wednesday, June 27, 2012


This little afternoon habit of mine prompted my husband, nervous about the wine glass he'd find in the dishwasher sink every day after work, to ask faux-nonchalantly, "uh, honey?  What's with the wine glasses?  You okay?"  Pretty sure he thought I was knocking back a glass of the vino every afternoon.  Which would be AWESOME considering all the moving craziness and kid craziness and baby pressing down right on my you-know-where so I can't even WALK craziness making me, well, crazy ... if I weren't, you know, sustaining human life with my bloodstream.  Or whatever.
pregzilla happy hour.
it just feels fancier in the wine glass, you know?

Monday, June 25, 2012

8 years

Eight years ago today, I woke up to a sunny June morning outside the expansive windows of a penthouse suite overlooking Madison's Lake Monona.  Surrounded by my best friends who shared that suite with me on my last night as a single girl, I was ready to get up, get pretty, and get into that dress I'd been dreaming of since I was old enough to grasp the importance of the big white dress.  I stood at the window watching the sun sparkle on the lake, thinking of my groom a few floors below and our families who'd worked so hard with us to make this day come to reality, wondering how I'd gotten so lucky with this life.

This morning?  I woke with heartburn and an aching back and a cat on my pillow staring me down.  The sparkling lake?  Replaced with a toy-strewn house and something sticky on the kitchen floor.  And upstairs?  A & V, up a good half hour before I usually expect to hear a peep out of anyone (and HOURS before Miss V usually graces us with her presence), wrestling over the play toaster in the playroom.  I sat up in bed to choke down my heartburn meds, shook off the cat hair, and went upstairs to break up the brawl, which by then had turned into shrieks of laughter from pantless littles.  Lucky, I am, just in every different way than that girl of 8 years ago.  The groom's at work, but tonight, we'll have a very romantic celebration.  And by that I mean we'll eat our steak and crab legs to a Caillou soundtrack, and watch The Bachelorette over a bowl of Ben & Jerry's before I chew a pile of Tums and pass out for the night just shy of 10:00pm.

You know what?  I wouldn't change a thing (except the heartburn, I'd totally change that).  These eight years, they've been titled "growth".  Learning.  Learning to share a life, learning to buy houses, learning to sell houses, learning to deal when the shit hits the fan and the options look bleak.  Pets and travel and spats over who used the last egg and didn't add eggs to the grocery list.  And babies.  Praying for babies, mourning babies, celebrating babies, going "OMG ANOTHER BABY?!"  Bigger houses, bigger vehicles, all in the name of accommodating all those babies.  Bills, bills, bills.  Three cross-country moves, each a little more insane than the one before it.  The first?  Me, J, the FIL, and a U-Haul.  The third?  Months of preparations, logistical planning, reserving semi-trucks, and a fair dose of stress .... before we've packed a single box or put a cat (or three) in a car, even.

I think the next 8 years will be about settling in, breathing in, enjoying things at a slightly less hectic pace.  Watching babies grow, replacing baby gear with Barbies and Legos, planning adventures with not-so-little-littles.  A 10th anniversary celebration we're dreaming of that looks more wedding day, less everyday.  Maybe even staying in a house longer than 3 years (please, yes).  Whatever it brings, I'm lucky.  Lucky to have J by my side through it all.  Happy 8 years to you, J!  Thanks for sticking with me through all the crazy!

Friday, June 22, 2012


On Monday mornings, I've got Supermom ambitions.  We'll read!  And sing!  And bond!  And exercise our bodies and our minds and it will all be perfect and LAH-DEE-DAH!

On Friday afternoons?  Yeah, notsomuch.  Stick a fork in Supermom.
friday.  4:45pm.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

inside out not-pants

You know you might be losing it a little if you get home from running errands with your kids and find your leggings to be INSIDE OUT.  I mean, bad enough that I consider leggings pants on the regular nowadays (regular meaning, of course, every single day) but I can't even get my not-pants on right?  Is this what it's come to?  I'm so consumed with mothering 2.75 small people, working from home, planning a cross-half-country move with fifty two moving parts, and running a petting zoo that I'm now wearing inside out workout gear in PUBLIC?  Super.

Needless to say, it's been a long week.  Thankfully, the weekend is in sight.  The Texas-ish humidity has left us, my family returned from their (way too long) vacation, J and I have a dinner date to celebrate our 8th (EIGHTH?!?) anniversary this week, and Sunday will come and J will be home and I might have sufficient dressing time to ensure each of my garments are, you know, right side out.  Fancy.

After our last stop this afternoon, which was Kohl's, which was sad because my poor deprived daughter gasped when we pulled up and said "THE MALL!" (omg, honey, no) anyway, after they were very good there while I picked out a few pairs of play shorts for the boy child to replace the ones that mysteriously disappeared (flushed?  dog ate?  thrown into the woods?), I decided it was special treat time.  The Mimi, being thoughtful as Mimi always is, had sent each of the kids a card with a couple of dollars for an ice cream treat.  Time to put that to use, and believe me when I say the kids thought they were VERY cool pulling out their envelopes of cash and handing it over to pay for their treats.  Nice one, Mimi.
it's got to be hard to be that cute, i'm thinking.
I'll spare you the picture of me in my inside out not-pants.  You're welcome.

Monday, June 18, 2012

it was really that easy.

Raise your hand if you were around for Toddler BedGate 2011.  UGH.  Remember that, you guys?  How we tried and tried to move A to a big boy bed and it led to nothing but sleepless nights and misery and my sanity in shambles?  All.  Summer.  Long?

So though Vivi's grandparents gifted her with a decked out big girl bed for her 2nd birthday, I was hesitant.  We tried one night shortly after her birthday, she woke up far before her usual diva wake up time of 8:30-9:00am, I pulled the plug.  Got the crib tent.  But then remember how well THAT went?  (Recap: zipper broke, trapped child, black eye.)  (And I found out shortly after it had been recalled, so at least Amazon pulled through and gave my $53 back!)  So since that thing bit the dust, she'd been climbing in and out of her crib to retrieve the occasional necessity.  Likesuchas last week one day, when I went to get her up from her nap and found her wearing a rain coat and rain hat from her closet beside a mountain of books.  The climbing was no bueno, I knew it, but you guys - SCARED.  I need my sleep!  Now more than ever because let's FACE IT, August is coming TICK TOCK TICK TOCK NEVER SLEEP AGAIN.

So Thursday, bedtime.  We snuggled in her bed to read books as usual.  Except when we were done, I told her that since she was sooooooo big, she could even SLEEP there in that super cozy big girl bed!  Didn't she want to give the crib to baby sister, anyway?  Yes, yes she did.  So .... she laid down and went to sleep.
 And didn't get up until morning.

And napped as usual that day.

And slept right through the next night, too.

And when she wakes?  She sits in her bed and plays with her babies and looks at a book until I go up to get her.

So yesterday, confident that it really had been just that easy with this girl, we took apart the crib.  There were some concerned tears from Miss V ... until she realize there were 104 stuffed animals under the crib and diverted her attention to removing them one by one and saying "hi, monkey/wabbit/whatever!  We goina sweep in my big girl bed now!"
Done deal.  Sweet girl.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

sons v. daughters

What sons bring their mamas:
ants as big as the top of their finger.
i might have shrieked.
 What daughters bring their mamas:
and biiiiiig smiles.
The sentiments behind the "gifts"?  Equally touching, of course.  But oh, thank God for daughters.  THAT ANT WAS HUGE.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

vivi loves target, so there's that.

J's in a golf tournament today.  One that he left for long before the kids woke up and won't return from until long after they're in bed and I'm collapsed in a Ben & Jerry's induced coma on the bed watching Bravo through my eyelids.  But anyway, happy father's day, J, you're welcome for your one day vaca.

So faced with the prospect of 13 hours of single parenthood, I planned us a little Wausau road trip.  Target, Jimmy John's, and a (legal) option to strap my children into confinement for two hours of the day?  Winner.

It should've been an indication of things to come when ten minutes in, I couldn't get the DVD player in the mommymobile to function properly.  You know how DVDs play 23 previews then come to a main screen where you need to hit play or enter or something?  PLAY OR ENTER OR SOMETHING DIDN'T WORK.  Not by using the touch screen up front, not by using the remote pointed at the screen in back, not by using prayer or voodoo.  I pulled over twice before we even hit the main highway trying to make their shows of choice work, to no avail.  That went over really well.  "But I waaaaaant Buzz Lighyear NOWWWWW!"  So then I racked my brain for a DVD that didn't have a blasted menu, and of course the only one I could come up with was ..... yeah, D-D-D-D-D-Dora.  Dora makes me shudder with pangs of nausea after the 1st trimester from hell sponsored by Dora.  But whatever.  They were quiet, I brushed up on my espanol, we made it to Target in record time.

Hot pretzel time.  My kids would sell their souls for a hot pretzel from the Target concession place, I tell you.  Vivi dropped hers before she'd gotten one good bite out of it.  Back for another.  Then, it turned out Target was out of everything I'd come for.  I wanted a black robe for the hospital, and had seen a particularly cute one on our last Target jaunt that I didn't buy.  Only available in XXL.  Out of black sports bras in my size.  Out of baby girl baby books.  Out of a lovey I'd seen online and planned to buy 12 of for the baby.  Out of newborn size AND size 1 diapers on the clearance wall'o'diapers I'd heard some buzz about.  Have no fear, dear friends, I still managed to blow a Benjamin before we left. Sometimes I'm happy we have no Target?  Because, bankruptcy?

Then Jimmy John's.  Oh.  My.  Gah.  The first sign of trouble was that the parking lot was PACKED and the drive through closed.  Then I noticed a suspiciously long line of people standing in front of JJ's.  And all down the block.  Oh hey fun surprise, it's $1 JJ's Day!  And you know who turns up for $1 JJ's Day?  WEIRDOS from WEIRDVILLE.  They were without shoes and without manners and without morals, even.  And it was one per person, you see.  So about 24 people had infants in carriers that they brought to count as a "person".  (Maybe you should've specified the $1 sub benefactor had to have, oh idk, TEETH, JJ's?)  I almost cried, not even kidding.  My kids were hungry, I was hungry, we'd come all this way!  I asked the JJ's guy outside managing the line if they were delivering and he said yes, but then crushed all my hopes and dreams when he said they could NOT deliver to my car out in the parking lot, not even for a $5 tip.  Lame.  Conclusion: we totally did wait in the line, much as it pained me.  And the sub of my choosing (my beloved Beach Club), hilariously, was exempt from the $1 JJ's Day special, so I paid full price for the honor of eating JJ's on #1 JJ's Day.

So lunch.  Vivi pooped her diaper just as I unwrapped my prized JJ's.  And loudly announced to the entire restaurant that she'd done so.  Not fab, V, not fab at ALL.  We returned to our table and Anderson spilled his milk.  Then had a fit because Vivi ate one teeny tiny shred of his cheese.  Then they started in with the "poopy butt" game.  One says "poopy butt" and the other one says "poopy butt" even louder and so on.  Loads of fun for everyone in earshot.  (Not.)  Usually I'd pack up and leave immediately, but I'd just waited 20 minutes in line for JJ's, people.  I WAS GOING TO EAT.  I told them if they kept it up, they didn't get the cookies I had for them in the car (aka, an emergency stash of animal crackers, which are totally cookies if you've ever put a minute's thought into it).  The "poopy butts" kept right on going, I ate at record speed, and we left.

Then it stormed all the way home, but the FIBs pulling boats up north took no notice and kept right on blowing past us at 85mph and cutting right back in front of me so I couldn't see three feet in front of my bumper.  At least I had those forfeited cookies to eat to calm my nerves.

It should go without saying that I'm being a bit dramatic about the day's goings-on, because what fun is a blog if not to be all melodramatic about nothing from time to time?  There were happy moments.  Heart warming ones, even.  Like how much fun the Fake Twins had choosing a baby toy for their baby sister.  Or when out of nowhere, Bug looked at me with admiration and said I looked "so so so so so pretty" today.  Or best of all, on the way out of Wausau, Anderson goes "mommy, I love you so much."  Awww.  And Vivi thought for a second, then followed up with "mommy, I love Target sooooo much!"  Precious, precious girl.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

27 weeks

27 weeks.  Third trimester, or almost, depending on who you ask.  I didn't ask anyone.  I feel like I'm in the third trimester.  Twice daily heartburn meds with Tums to keep the mouth puke at bay in the hours in between (hawt!)  Bi-weekly checkups with the doc.  My walk is more waddle every day.  Getting from the floor to the feet is, well, a feat.  But really?  I'm enjoying the lot of it.  It's the last ride, you know?  The end of an (long, roller coaster-y) era.  And wrapping it up GD-free and timed perfectly with the gorgeous northern Wisconsin summer weather?  Fantastico!

Cuter than the bump, though .... the babies.  Who, quite obviously, have shed any last remaining baby skin and turned into BIG HUGE KIDS.

Am I right?  Who are these people?  They sing along to Kelly Clarkson in the car, they dress themselves in the morning and deposit their dirty pajamas into the hamper, and the littler one puts her hands on her hips and gives me a sassy "WHY, mommy?" when I request she do something she doesn't necessarily see herself doing.  As exciting as it is to move onto big kid activities with these two (they spent the morning biking on a lakeside bike path while I got in a bit of exercise keeping up), it does break a mama's heart a bit to download a memory card full of photos and see big kids appear on your screen where babies once did, you know?  Cryface.

Even the damn puppy looks all grown up!  GAH!

Thursday, June 7, 2012


You know what's funny?  How J and I went to college with a ton of Colorado kids and mocked them for their "blah blah blah Colorado is the best blah blah blah BEST BEST BEST" ways.  Um, yeah.  We're totally going to turn into those people.  Apologies in advance.  Because yeah, we love Colorado.  We love the little town we're headed to.  We love the people we met and the places we saw and the fresh mountain air and the way that everywhere we looked there were people walking and biking and running and looking inspirationally fit.  And the altitude-related nosebleeds and dehydration, I totally loved how my nose bled like a faucet and I couldn't drink enough water to keep me feeling even semi-hydrated.  Jay kay.  I'll adapt?

So we loved it.  Not to say we don't love where we are (we do, duh!) or that I won't cry when we pack up this house and hug our goodbyes and pull out of this state (I will!)  but it's a relief to know we love where we're going, too.  So much so that I was teary eyed in the airport knowing we wouldn't be back for months and months.  And I met a friend!  I found a local mom's blog in one of my twenty bazillion google searches of all things Durango related, read it and liked her immediately, and arranged to meet up with her for lunch while we were there.  She was even NICER than she seemed on the internet (which is pretty darn nice).  And she knew where to get the best cupcake in town, so need I say more?

And Bug has a preschool!  I'd accepted that the preschools would likely be packed solid with waiting lists and I was headed for a full winter of three kids four and under at home all day every day (paper bag, deep breaths), but managed to find a slot at one I'd had on my list.  We met the director, we got a good feeling about the place, we loved the play-based Christian curriculum, and the little Mister will be off to preschool two full days a week as soon as we make it out there!  He's ready.  I'm ready.  I'll most certainly be ready when the reality of life with three hits.  But I'll still cry, because duh.  He's just a WEE LITTLE INFANT!

Oh, and a house.  We found a house!  Eeeeeek!  It's one I'd been eying on the internet for the past month, and we loved it in real life, too.  Well ... I loved it right away, J needed a bit of convincing that the needed updates weren't deal breakers, just fun opportunities.  And by "fun opportunities" I mean twenty hundred trips to Home Depot, a deck replacement, and a few bathroom remodels.  Fun!  No, but seriously, it's great, and the neighborhood a total ten.  And after seeing some places where "beautiful backyard" meant "steep cliff into mountainy nothingness" and "cozy" meant "no place to put your ten boxes of Christmas decor" ... J was pretty sold on the place with the acre lot and the square footage and the fact that it has an actual office that he can call his very own.  Where he can .... do officey things?  I won't say much more than that for now, it's still pending inspections and such, but I'm really happy and hopeful all will go smoothly on the house front - down there and up here.

Oh, how I missed my babies, though!  Their little voices and their belly laughs and their kisses and hugs ... this mama missed that.  I missed my dude who wears his shades on his head to eat his snack and my girl who knows eyeshadow from mascara (still working on the eyelash curling skills).  I held myself back from waking them up when we got in last night to squeeze them silly, but you better believe I was up and waiting at the bottom of the stairs when I heard the first little stirring at 7am.  It was sort of like Christmas morning for a mom.

In baby news, 27 weeks this week.  TWENTY SEVEN, YOU GUYS.  Isn't that third trimester?  I'm pretty sure it is.  I'm definitely sure it means baby girl will be here in 11.6 weeks, which sounds so near I can almost feel the newborn exhaustion sinking into my bones just thinking about it.  She's moving all around and stretching up toward my ribs (here we go again) and the very big news is, she just might have a name.  12 hours travel time each way = a whole lot of time to hash out our options. Which, no, I won't be sharing.  Because a) we're still not for SURE for sure, and b) you already know the sex and the birth date and SOMETHING needs to remain a mystery, right?

It's after 10:00pm, which is my bedtime, so I'm not sure why I'm still up.  Oh, wait, could it be the hours and hours of Housewives I'm catching up on?  (OC, NJ, and NY all at once?  OD.)  But you guys?  NEW YORK?  What is happening there?  That opening conversation between The Countess and The Blonde Whose Name I Don't Care Enough To Recall?  SNORE.  The whole show was a sad, lonely, Simonless bore!  I shut it off halfway through!  Is it even worth turning back on?  Or do I just give up, walk away, sever ties?  These are major life decisions, yall!  Oh and speaking of SNORING, Emily the Bachelorette?  So.  Boring.  You can SO do better, summer television!  Teen Mom, please don't disappoint.  Please?

Saturday, June 2, 2012

the list

Official Shitlist of June 2, 2012:

Frontier Airlines.  For ditching us in the Denver airport after weather kept our inbound flight circling for a half hour before going in for the rockiest landing of my LIFE.  There were people praying, yall.  We land, we run, I blister my feet in my cute new flats .... we're told we'd been left behind by our connecting flight.  And oh yeah, it was the last flight of the night (at 3pm).  And oh yeah, no hotel voucher because it was a weather related issue, but we'll see you tomorrow morning!  Super.  JUST TOTALLY SUPER.

Budget Rent-a-Car.  You GUYS!  Listen to this mess.  We had a rental booked for pickup at the Durango airport.  I called that pick up counter, the guy was super nice, no big deal, just call the 1-800 number and they'll reset your reservation for tomorrow.  Our reservation, mind you, was for an uber economical compact car at the tune of $139 for the whole trip.  But tonight?  When I called?  I was informed by the customer "care" agent that all compact cars were mysteriously unavailable for tomorrow, and not only that but all CARS of any sort were also gone .... but they had a Hummer I could rent for $500.  A HUMMER.  I mean, a) money, but also b) we'd look like total DBs?  Tell me, lady, what exactly HAPPENED to all the cars in Durango?  Was there an alien abduction of the automotive sort?  I actually asked her that, I guess she didn't think it was funny, because she just asked me to confirm my Hummer rental.  Except, since I'm not a moron, I pulled up the Budget website while on the phone with the scam artist and informed HER that I could plainly see every type of car was available in Durango for pickup tomorrow.  GEE BIG SURPRISE that she then backtracked, put me on hold, and miraculously found me a compact I could rent at my originally agreed upon price?  Too late, cancel, booked with Enterprise.  Budget + Pea in the Pod + Tots in Mind = dead to me.

Officially not on the Shitlist of June 2, 2012:

Coloradans!  Everyone in the state of Colorado OUTSIDE of the airport, I mean, who are pretty much the nicest people ever.  (And airport people don't count, because they're airport people and contractually obligated to be awful.)  But seriously.  The shuttle driver, the hotel people, and the waiters at the Ruby Tuesday we found to stuff our face at after a long, long day?  So.  Freaking.  Nice.  Yay, Colorado outside of the airport people!

My parents.  For watching our babies and sending me this video at just the right moment (aka, the moment where I was sitting miserably on a bench outside the airport watching for a shuttle and looking like a total crazy person, having just bawled my eyes out in the Denver airport because OMG STRANDED and OMG HORMONES and OMG BLISTERFEET) and making me smile.  I mean, Bug smashes his sister into the pavement ... but still.  He's a brother, that's what they do.  Knowing the babies are back home dancing at a graduation party and happy with Mommo and grandpa?  That's good stuff.

Friday, June 1, 2012

best, best, best

This started out as a "good, better, best" post.  But then I was all "IT'S ALL THE BEST!"

Best: hold on to your hats .... I DON'T HAVE DIABETES!  I find it fitting this news came on National Donut Day.  Mmmm.  Donut.  I can totally have a donut if I want a donut!  I get to be NORMAL and not high risk and probably not gain 50 pounds for no good reason at all!  My baby might be below the 90th% at birth!  I can't even believe it.  I asked the nurse 25 times if she was SURE.  She was.  WAHOO!

Best: J, me, Colorado.  Tomorrow.  Notice I just said J and me and not "J and me and two kids and a car seat and a pack and play and eight hundred pieces of carry on"?  That's right, just the two of us (plus one harmless, non-diabetic fetus), flying solo.  Literally. I get to sit on a plane and do whatever I want!  And if somebody craps their pants, IT'S TOTALLY NOT MY PROBLEM!  And better yet, we're going house hunting.  We've got four on the list, there's one I'm hoping we love in person as much as we love online, but mostly we're just excited to check out our new town, visit a preschool for Bug, and eat meals in peace and quiet without anyone jabbing themselves in the eye with a fork. And I can eat what I WANT!

Best: seeing my husband in the cockpit again.  J was a student pilot when we met, and he loved nothing more than flying.  No, really, I'm pretty sure he loved flying more than me, even.  He hasn't been in the air for seven years, which is very major sadface .... until last night.  It was kind of magical.  The kids watched him take off with great concern and I held my breath until I saw his feet back on the ground, but the smile on his face?  The best.

PS:  A few of you asked where we'd live between closing time and moving to Colorado time.  Assuming all goes as planned (it will, it will, it will), the new owners will move in here in mid-August, we'll send our belongings on a moving truck to the new house (the imaginary new house that will hopefully be a real thing by then) and we'll move a few suitcases and one U-Haul and Suburban's worth of random furniture and baby gear into the house a few miles away that my sister has been living in (she'll be gone to Colorado already).  It's nothing fancy, but it's got 3 bedrooms and a yard and, like, a roof and such.  It won't be the fanciest month ever, but it'll do.  And as soon as I can gather the strength to get onto a plane, we're out.  My OB said today he'd expect me to be okay to go by 3-4 weeks after the c-section.  I have a feeling we'll be shooting for three, especially if my recoveries are as easy as they were the first two times (it will be, it will be, it will be).  Because a month (+) in a temporary house without all of the kids' toys and furniture and other billion random things we rely on to make our days go smoothly?  Eek.  Oh well.  CARBS AND SUGAR!

PPS: I'm joking about all the carbs and sugar.  I plan to keep up the semi-healthy diet and exercise habits I've been relying on to keep my weight and blood sugar in check, but damn, it's just nice to know I can eat some DQ if I really want, without causing bodily harm to the unborn.  You know?