Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Thoughts from SuperMom

{I'm writing this post in response to a friend's request for advice for her friend who is also going from three kids to five.  I feel ill-qualified to give advice...I'm just figuring it out as I go along...but here are some of my thoughts that I've had lately.  It's a little rambly, but that's how my brain works these days.}

I get called "SuperMom" a lot.  It's pretty funny, really, and it's all in perspective.  I get called "SuperMom" for getting through a door unassisted while carrying two baby seats, or for being out in public with my kids, or for doing any number of things for two babies at once (really, you just get used to it!)

Anyhow, the point is, it doesn't take much for people to say it.

Some days I feel like the name fits.  Not for getting through a door, but for not yelling at my kids when they've been particularly naughty.  Or for fixing a healthy dinner. Or for remembering to keep things in perspective, or to go to bed early, or for paying attention to a particular child's behavior and thinking about the WHY instead of just the WHAT.

I'm firmly convinced that "whom God calls, He qualifies." 
I was very concerned during my pregnancy that I would NOT be able to take care of five children.  I remember being on the verge of tears a time or two while confiding that fear to friends.  But you know what?  I'm as good (or as bad) of a Mom as I was with three.  We are no later (and sometimes less late) to church now than we were with one, two, or three children.  We do have to try harder to maintain our usual standard of tardiness, but we are able to manage it (most of the time).

{I will admit that I wouldn't have as much Super Mom success under my belt if it weren't for support from family and friends.  I like to think that I'm independent and strong, but it's been humbling to see that I need help so often...but I think being able to admit that is part of my "qualification."  When the neighbor offered to take my daughter to the bus stop each morning my first answer was no...and then I had to talk myself into accepting the offer, which has been a HUGE help to me, and probably not a huge sacrifice for her.}

I try to remember that most things that I worry about don't really matter.  A clean house doesn't matter when compared to getting enough sleep to be a better mom.  A few unhealthy meals when babies are little and you are in "survival mode" won't matter.  I've thrown out quite a few "ideals": I've had to do a lot of things with the twins that I never would have dreamed of with my other children. 

But it hasn't really mattered, honestly.  Right now I'm sitting in a messy house, overdue for a shower.  My kids went to bed happy, though, and I managed to get a healthy meal on the table (freezer cooking helps, when I'm organized enough to manage it!).  I even went grocery shopping!  Today I got through with a little bit of superness intact.

Some days I am not a Super Mom.  Some days I'm so tired that I drag myself through the day, yelling at my kids, hanging out on the couch while they make messes around me.  We eat whatever I can find at 5:59 p.m. (ok, lets be honest, sometimes it's well after 6:00), and it's lacking in veggies.  Some days there is at least one child crying at any given moment in the day (but not the same child all day), and my children fight with each other.  Some days I'm so frustrated that my husband has to suggest that I take a couple of minutes to walk around the neighborhood just to catch a breath.

My goal for now is to have more good days than bad ones.  That magical 6-month mark after having the twins has made it easier.  We are slowly able to pick up where we left off, and everyone is settling into the new routines and roles.  Many days are beautiful, and at the end of the day I have only thankfulness in my prayers.  Some days, still, end with prayers that are more along the lines of, "I know.  I'm sorry.  I'll try again tomorrow."  But it's ok, because I do keep trying.

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just because I don't want a picture-less post.  and because they are cute and this picture makes me laugh.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

The happenings of this Week {massive}

First of all, I've been completely remiss at announcing the winner from Monkey's photoshoot giveaway!  So without further ado, the winner is... Tamara!  Congrats!  I'll be in touch with you to find out your prize preference.

Baby news: 
I took Owl and Otter in for another weight check, and they are 9#14 oz and 9#11 oz.  Which is enough of a gain to dismiss concerns.  They are, admittedly, quite small.  But they are active and generally happy. 

They are starting to sit up unassisted, but it's still hit and miss.  They get up and rock on hands and knees a LOT and sometimes they move forward...but it's mostly by accident.

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a random picture of Owl

No teeth yet, but an increasing amount of drool.

The latest cute thing is their smiles.  Owl smiles in a wide closed-mouth smile that makes her cheeks chub out in little balls.  Adorable.  Equally adorable: Otter's smile that includes sticking out her tongue. {Her happiest jabbers also have a stuck-out tongue.}

Their sleeping took a turn for the worse about a month ago.  Because we found out that they hadn't been gaining much I started taking every opportunity to feed them...so at night if they woke up I'd feed them rather than give them a chupa and let them go back to sleep.   I guess it helped from the feeding side of things, but not the sleeping.  One night I was awoken every hour because they alternated.  So a few nights ago I started putting one in the crib in their room and one in the cradle in our room.  They went back to just a couple of times per night, and last night Owl slept straight from 10pm until 9am.

Moose news:
He says "did."  As in, "I did walk" "She did hit me"...every past-tense verb is has "did" added, and some present-tense ones have "do."

I posted these Moose-isms on Facebook--

  • In the car today Moose and I saw a car being towed by a truck. Moose saw it and said, "oh, look at that tip toe truck!"  
  • Just now Fox told Moose to go take off his sister's boots. Moose responded, "but they match my pants!" ...hmm, maybe he spends too much time with his sisters.
  • (Written to my friend, Sister Jarrett)  After you left I went in to help the kids with their personal prayers. For Moose he repeats what I tell him to say...until tonight. When I said "in the name..." he said, "I'm not done yet!"
"oh, what do you want to say?"  
"I want to say 'thank you that Sister Jarrett did come here.'" 
So then he said it and finished the prayer. Super sweet : ) I guess I wasn't the only one that was grateful for the visit : ) 
Monkey news:
Poor Monkey got sick during the night.  I think she's thrown up at least 10 times since then.  We stayed home from church together.  She's taking a little nap now.

But yesterday she and Chick and Moose got to go meet Clifford and hear a Clifford story time, so that's pretty exciting.  {My aunt took them, and the babies napped, so I had a rare quiet house and free time.  "Free" is relative...I tidied the house and junk like that.}


And last weekend Monkey and Chick decorated a gingerbread house (with Fox's help).  It was tremendously exciting for them.

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Chick news:
She's 6!  On her birthday she wore her hair in looped up braids with pink ribbons, like the American Girl books about Kirsten.  In fact, Kirsten is her favorite of the girls, and we read "Happy Birthday, Kirsten" this week.  In the book she gets pink hair ribbons for her birthday, as well as a quilt that her friends made for her.  And her Mama has a new baby and Kirsten helps a lot.  Lots of similarities to Chick.  She is my fabulous baby helper, and she got a package in the mail from her Grandma J which had a beautiful new quilt.

Anyhow, Chick loved all of her presents, and has played with/ used them all.  But her favorite present was her unicorn.  She named it Uniella.

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Our tradition is to do a pinterest/ internet search for the cake that they want, and then it's my job to try to recreate it (or something similar).  Chick found several that she liked, but then told me that it didn't really matter what kind of cake it was.  She just wanted to help me make it, and she wanted to be my ONLY helper.  {She was a great baking assistant, but let Monkey in on the action too for frosting}.

She chose THIS cake in the end, because it reminds her of Cinderella's dress.  I was happy with her selection because I like to try new things when cooking. 

  • This time I tried the tips for better cake from a mix (which equates to many more calories} found HERE
  • And I learned to make buttercream roses, which was pretty fun and exciting. 
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  • I also goofed around trying to figure out some other buttercream design stuff, and Chick ended up choosing the less realistic flowers, but I liked the color better anyhow. {the pinks are frozen until v-day}
  • And I got to stack 4 tiers, but to avoid having WAY too much cake I did single layers for each tier.  Which made for a squattier cake and thus looked completely different from the inspiration.
  • I also made marshmallow fondant for the first time. Partway through the process I thought that it was ruined and wasn't going to work out. But pretty much one minute later it was gorgeous and done. (maybe not a literal minute...felt like a minute though).
  • I've bought fondant before, but I think it was just for cutting out shapes...I'd never covered a cake with it, so that was another first.
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At any rate, it was a fun learning process. Plus, thankfully, Chick was happy with the finished product (so was I, novice that I am). She even said that it was more beautiful than the original picture : ) Oh, and it tasted great too...the extra added calories really paid off ; )

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Other news:
I actually made a project! Not a big one, but started and completely finished is quite an accomplishment these days.

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I think that's all of my recent news. This next week is layout, and if combined with the flu it's sure to be a much less eventful one than this past week has been!!