Thursday, May 30, 2013

Almost summer brreak

Dude, you guys, I barely have time to write this because OMG Ben and I are watching Scandal, and it is SO GOOD. I am usually super snobby about TV and rarely get hooked on plain old network shows (The Office and The Mindy Project and Big Brother as notable exceptions), but we have been looking for a new series to watch at night and our Facebook feeds have been flooded with people having a Scandal binge, so we downloaded the whole thing.  IT'S AWESOME.

A lovely Facebook friend sent me this cute onesie for Dorothy:
She has started to sort of like sleeping in the swing, which is good because OMG you guys, this baby DOES NOT NAP unless I (not Ben-- Ben makes her cry when she wants to sleep-- we found this out the hard way when I got a pedicure yesterday) sit on the couch or lie on my bed and hold her.  This is lovely, of course, but not always practical.
She gets really freaking crabby after dinner because, you know, she has gone a whole damn day without a nap
But as soon as we go outside and start walking, she is happy and calm.  And can you believe it is almost June and we are still bundling up to go outside?
Dorothy and Cooper have started to bathe together.  This is super dangerous for Dorothy.
I cannot get enough of her skinny jeans.
Cooper freaking LOVES the pool.  Unfortunately, he kind of thinks that he can swim and if he could just be allowed to jump off the diving board, he would paddle away like the big boys.
The pool deck makes Dorothy fall asleep.  I hope this trend continues all summer.
Cooper thinks the fountain might be a drinking fountain.
Harry cannot take a picture without posing.
He has also started swimming laps.
Oh, Cooper.  When Dorothy's not in her swing, he runs to the bathroom and gets a stool and climbs in.
Dorothy really enjoys our walks-- and her tongue.
Orange Leaf!
Dorothy at Orange Leaf
I have a lot of FB friends posting about how excited they are to have their kids all to themselves for the summer, but I am a little freaked out.  We only have 2 weeks left and then NO help with the kids until September.  Yikes.  I foresee lots of pool days.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Family fun time!

 So! Much! Togetherness!

In preparation for a summer where the 6 of us will spend every waking (and sleeping for that matter) moment together 6 full days a week, we crammed a ton of togetherness into this weekend.  AND IT'S NOT EVEN OVER YET!

Yesterday ,morning we bundled everyone up in the 50-degree chill to hit the downtown farmers market.  OMG it was crowded.  Ben could not handle walking at a snail's pace around the capitol in a throng of hippies, posers, and tourists, so we bought some popcorn, a funny onesie for Dorothy, and fresh sugar donuts while Cooper shrieked in the BOB and Dorothy snuggled in the Moby.  Then we let Cooper run free and went to 5 Guys for a fatty lunch.  Tip:  If you only eat half a little burger and half an order of fries, your lunch is only about 400 calories.
 Brotherly love:
 Cooper was there, too, I promise.
 Ben and I put the babies to bed and got a sitter for the big kids and went to a fantastic little supper club with friends Saturday night.  My bloody Mary was so awesomely supper-club-in-Wisconsin that I had to take a picture.  Asparagus! Green beans! Sausage!  Now THAT is a drink. 

This morning, we thought OMG why do we never go to the beautiful arboretum?  It took us 2 hours from the moment we had this thought until the moment we actually GOT to the arboretum (which is only like 7 minutes from our house) because evreyone was such a damn pain in the ass, which was really the answer to our question.  But still.  We stayed for hours as the whine fest escalated, and we finished with a picnic at a neighboring park.

Dorothy, dressed for her hike:
Cooper was really excited to roam free like the big boys

 He even brought a camera.
 Harry collapsed dramatically to record a deer citing in his field journal.
 Jack was scared of snakes in this log.
 Dorothy didn't really like it-- we could never get a good wrap going.
 I thought for sure this stick business was going to end badly, but Ben still has both his eyes.
 Cooper is such a little man eating at the picnic table, and he won't be 2 until after the summer.
 A relaxing moment.
It was 60 and raining today (but no thunder or lightening!) so Harry and Jack begged to be taken to the pool.  I reluctantly agreed and had to wear a sweatshirt and wrap Dorothy in a blanket while those two lunatics swam, dove and went down the slide.

Ben built a fire with Harry and Jack after the babies went to bed (because that's how cold it is here), and they made Jiffy Pop and S'Mores, much to everyone's delight.  Ben wanted me to put Cooper to bed so he could get a head start on the fire.  We proposed this plan to Cooper who disagreed vehemently because he loves Ben the most.  When we first had Dorothy, Cooper was really depressed (I think that's why he was so sick, and I am only sort of kidding-- Ben suggested he go on baby Paxil).  Now, though, he just knows he has been jilted, and he's pissed about it.  He does not want my sloppy put-him-to-bed seconds, thank you very much.

I was going to complain about how fat I am, but Ben just made a huge cheese and hummus snack, so, um, maybe later.

Thursday, May 23, 2013


Cooper is screaming like this because I told him he could not touch the ant trap on the kitchen floor (YUM!  NOTHING SAYS CLEAN KITCHEN LIKE AN ANT TRAP!), but this was his exact face during his entire well-child check up on Wednesday.  And hey!  We were only 2 months late for his 18-month check up.  Go us!

He HATES going to the doctor so much that the doctor suggested we just delay his Hep A vaccine until his next appointment when he needs a flu shot anyway so he wouldn't have to get a shot which would totally confirm his idea that the doctor's office is a terrible place.

Speaking of vaccines, Dorothy T also had a check up and got her first round of shots.  She is 50th percentile across the board and showed off her awesome tummy time skills by rolling over on the exam table twice.

I am back on a monthly HMO massage schedule, and the one I got today was killer in a good way.  It hurt like hell at the time, which was totally unexpected because the therapist was this tiny, adorable little girl (who steamrolled the shit out of my shoulder), but I feel great now.  She said one of my legs is shorter than the other and one of them turns in because my hips are so messed up.  She thinks from childbirth; I think from the aftermath-- you know, carrying around 2 babies and 4 kids' worth of crap all the time.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Ups and downs

Harry, Cooper, Ben, and I all got sunburned today.  Jack has a very tan neck.

The best part of my weekend so far has been lying down on my bed with Dorothy at 1:25 and sleeping until 3:27 with her all snuggled against m.  I mean, duh.  There is nothing NOTHING better than sleeping with a tiny cuddly baby.  I plan to do that a lot for the next 2 or 3 weeks because she is a horrible daytime sleeper.  I wonder if lying down with her for 3 naps a day will help her gradually learn to sleep during those times.  Right now, she really only sleeps in the jogging stroller or the Ergo or on my lap, but she really does have general nap times-- around 8:30 in the morning, around 10:30 in the morning, and around 2 in the afternoon.  If she added in a dinner prep time cat nap to get her through to her 6:00 bedtime, I think she'd be good to go.  Anyway, though, after she figures out her naps, my days of snuggling with a sleeping baby will be largely over.  How heartbreaking is that?

I thought that the shittiest part of my weekend happened bright and early Friday morning, and I was relieved to have gotten it over with so quickly and efficiently.  It rained before the kids went to school, so I assumed that the morning exercise walk that I have gotten in the habit of taking as soon as I drop the big boys off was not going to happen.  Instead of getting myself dressed in cuteish workout clothes, I stuck the baby in her bouncer and cleaned all 3 bathrooms, which I usually do after I take H and J to school.  Figuring I would stick Dorothy in the Ergo where I could shield her with an umbrella and where she would hide my clothes, I stayed in the gray capri yoga pants and gray t-shirt I slept in, adding a ratty green Northface sweatshirt because it was cold.  At the last possible second, as the kids were finding their rain boots and loading their lunches into their backpacks, though, I noticed a break in the storm and decided to head out for a walk after all.  Not really thinking about how terrible I looked, I put Dorothy and Cooper in the double jogger, and we headed out.  LATE.  Not late enough for the tardy bell, but late enough that Jack's class had already gone up to their room, so I had to walk him inside.  Except my stroller would not fit through the door to school.  So, I let Cooper-- dressed in red and green teddy bear pajama leggings and a blue, black, and red plaid button-down pajama top, red and yellow Crocs, and syrup-- out and schlepped the car seat in over my arm.  Once inside, Cooper BOLTED and started following kids to their classrooms.  I chased him down, realizing that my nighttime nursing bra doesn't offer the same kind of support as a sports bra and really wishing I had brushed my teeth and worn giant sunglasses.  Somehow, Jack, Cooper, Dorothy, and I struggled up the stairs to Jack;s classroom, where Cooper lost his shit because he wanted to go in.  Of course Jack's teachers welcomed him warmly, and we all stood around for a few minutes while I wished I had on deodorant.  On our way out through the cafeteria, Cooper fell down in the janitor's post-breakfast dirt pile, and we had to walk pat a line of well-dressed, perfumed, made-up fifth grade moms waiting to chaperone a field trip.  I said, "Hahaha.  I never have to come inside the building when I have it together in the morning," and they said cricket cricket.  It was ridiculous, and I head that Harper Valley PTA soung in my head for my whole walk.

This may have been the worst part of my weekend, until this afternoon when Jack crapped his swimsuit in the bathroom because he played in the sprinkler too long and really had to go by the time he tore himself away.  This would have been no big deal had he MENTIONED it to me.  Instead, he dumped it out of his pants onto the floor and COVERED IT UP WITH THE RUG, shut the bathroom door, and went back outside.  I came into the bathroom to put away a stack of fluffy yellow towels warm from the dryer, and smell smacked me in the face.  Then I noticed a shit handprint on the linen closet door, a wad of poop smushed into the sink faucet, and a waste basket full of soggy brown tissues.  I was super nice to Jack, calling him in from the yard to take a shower (shit fell out of his SOCKS when he took them off in the laundry room) and telling him that next time, he should just ask for help right away.  Then I bleached the shit (LITERALLY) out of every possible bathroom surface including the floor and washed all the rugs and towels 3 times on hot and then cleaned the washer with bleach and then ran a load of whites with bleach.  It was gross-- I kept finding new shit spots (like the wall behind the hand towel), so I had to think if I were Jack and had poop all over my hands, what else would I touch?  Everything, apparently.  The light switch for sure.

Ben has been dying to buy a dog for Harry's birthday, and I was inches away from agreeing with him even though I kind of think a dog would make every aspect of my life worse.  Then I found the downstairs toilet totally clogged with toilet paper and covered with piss, and shitmageddeon happened upstairs.  I felt perfectly confident in my decision to tell the family no dog until all the humans in the house can pot their bodily waste where it is supposed to go.  Next we'll work on the toothpaste in the sinks.
Took Jack on a bike ride before we picked up Harry at school.  He loved the alone time.

Also the dandelions

Another echo. Good news:  Effusion is gone-- heart and lungs clear.  Bad news:  his aortic valve is leaky.

I am so fat and will post about that soon, but oh my god she's getting so big.  Here she was in the pose on 4-8.

Round head and face like baby Cooper.

Such a goofy face-- she might have my lazy eye

Future veggie garden...

So much dramz.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

2 months yesterday

She's 2 months old, you guys!
And totally not smiling about it
Even though this was happening
I love how animated Cooper is, even right before bedtime
Thank goodness for play outside season!
This looks just like baby Jack
Dorothy and I are in my office finishing final grades, and she just hosed me down with vomit-- her first spit up, so I was totally unprepared.

It's gorgeous today, and I cannot wait to drag my fat ass and my huge stroller up some big hills this afternoon.

Ben and I lost our damn minds and are PTO co-presidents next year. Should be great blog material, right?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

35: not bad so far

Despite the fact that my baby's lips never touched the business end of a pacifier, she rarely went more than sixty minutes without nursing, and she slept strapped to my body (by day) or clasped in my arms (by night) for the first 44 days of her life, I got my period at exactly 6 weeks and 2 days postpartum.

What in the hell?

When the same damn thing happened with Cooper, I assumed it was because of the intense paci use and the fact that he slept 10 hours overnight in his Rock n Play cradle, which, by the way is the device responsible for Dorothy's birth-- Cooper was such an amazingly easy infant that we figured why not have another.  This time, though, I am the best little APer around and still, still, still my reproductive system thinks we're Duggers and is ready to work on #5.  And just a few days ago, we experienced our first of what will surely be many milk supply dips as I am pretty sure I was ovulating.  What is my body thinking?  A February baby is not my ideal Valentine this year.  Or any year from here on out.

I promise not to freak out about cyclical milk changes with Dorothy the way I did with Cooper because Cooper never drank a single bottle and nursed into my second trimester, wonky milk supply and all.  And he's chubby.  I am just going to nurse, nurse, nurse on demand whenever she wants and forget about pumping.  I have a course release in the fall, so as long as we can figure out my one meeting a week, Dorothy and I should be able to be together for all feedings.  I have a week of meetings in August that might be tricky, but I think I can have a babysitter bring her to me every 2 hours, and we should be fine.

I like that she and I have never been-- and are not planning to be-- out of each other's sight for the next 10 months.  The farthest she has been from me is in an adjacent building with Ben while I taught class and hanging out snug at home while I got a couple of massages last week.

A couple, yes.  Mainly because I haven't been for a massage in so long-- I was really tense.  I HATE prenatal massages because everyplace around here props me up with towels, and I sometimes feel like I am going to pass out from bad angles, and then I had to wait for Dorothy to space her feedings out a little more. It's been a YEAR.  Talk about roughing it.

The first one on Tuesday was just lovely.  There is something about lying on my stomach on a massage table with my face sticking out of the round face pillow thing trying not to drool on the therapist's foot as she works on the left shoulder that has never been right since I pulled a muscle there moving into an apartment right before Ben and I got married that makes me feel so happy and grateful for my wonderful little life.

My second massage of the week-- on Saturday to kick off my Mothers Day/birthday/all about me weekend-- really sucked.  I think the extreme bitchiness I brought with me had something to do with it.  (Ben said, wow, I feel like your hormones are really messed up today which is the last thing you should ever say to someone who is hormonal.) The therapist started with me face up, which is not the usual position, and she never actually massaged my face or my temples, which was a huge bummer and by the time I realized she was never actually going to, I was face down, and it was too late.  Also?  She did this weird pinchy thing long my jaw and neck, and I felt like she was checking my lymph nodes only it made my arms tingly.

Morals of the story:  1.  I can bitch about anything, including a week that contains multiple spa services.  2.  Don't lie down for a massage with a bad attitude.  It screws up your chakras or something.  3. I need more regular massages-- I'm going at least every 4 weeks starting next Thursday.

How in the world can my tiny squishy baby be 2 months old tomorrow?  Two months ago, Ben and I were walking the halls of labor and delivery.  I was drinking apple juice with ice cubes; he was taking random pictures and posting them on Facebook, and we were both 5-and-a-half hours away from meeting the delightful pink person who is sleeping in her own crib right now, lulled into silence by her Sleep Sheep's whale noises.

How can I be 35 already?  With 4 kids and 2 houses?  Does.not.seem.possible.

I had a terrific birthday.

We met with infectious disease about Harry-- hey, want to know the shittiest place to take your infant?  the infectious disease clinic at the hospital, omfg-- and they really don't think he has rheumatic fever.  Before they are going to dole out the Justavirus diagnosis, the doctors are reviewing some more evidence and consulting with some more people, and they are going to treat him like a strep carrier and give him another antibiotic at the end of his penicillin course, instead of leaving him on penicillin through adulthood, which is what they would do for rheumatic fever.

I got the purse I have been coveting since oh MY WHOLE LIFE, and the kids gave me picture albums which if you saw the laundry basket full of photos in our storage room, you would know we needed.

Because we are gluttons for punishment, we took everyone to our favorite birthday bar, and I got pretty drunk on 1.5 beers.

Then Ben and I sat by a backyard fire after the kids went to bed and came inside to watch Veep.  Party animals. 
my fave picture

Ben the high chair

H, fresh off his talent show audition

Jack, king of the cell phone selfie

Dorothy's bday gift to me:  she took a paci and was happy the whole meal!

oh my god he's so adorable I want to eat him