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Holiday Thoughts May 31, 2010

Posted by Tori in Moms, Pregnancy.
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It’s exhausting raising two girls and growing another little one right now. The girls are growing, finding themselves and exploring. The little one is testing boundaries as fast as she can. She’s my little billy goat, always climbing and trying to reach everything, though we trying to tuck it all safely away. She has a fierce independent streak that reminds me a wee bit of her mama.

The older one has grown so much these last few weeks. I swear I turn around and she’s another foot taller and twice as bright as before. She’s very articulate, very loving and very dramatic. Her heart is pure gold.

I’ve spent a fair bit of time lecturing on the importance of treating sisters well. I want to emphasize to them now how important they are to each other. They are fundamentally different, I can already see that, but they do love each other very much. Sometimes they need a little reminding of that. It’s important to me that they learn how to work together now and not clash all of the time.

This little one that is growing inside me is getting bigger and more active all the time. I’m a little nervous about having a boy. It will be a different experience for sure. He has two fierce, fiery big sisters to grow up with. But he seems strong and I imagine that he will hold his own just fine.

As I get to celebrate a holiday and spend an extra day with my kiddos, I can’t help but be grateful for my family.

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Surprise Pregnancy December 28, 2009

Posted by Tori in Moms, Pregnancy.
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I’ve not been blogging here, or anywhere else despite my desire to do so. A lack of time and willpower on my part. However, with the changes coming for the new year, there’s no better time than to start now.

On Christmas Eve, I discovered that I am pregnant again. We’re having another baby. Well, I’m having the baby, but we’ll have another squishy baby when it’s all said and done. But, it’s a complete surprise to us. We had an accident, so I suspected from the morning after. It’s my third pregnancy, I figure I should know by now.

Part of me is incredibly excited. I wanted a  large family, but my husband wanted to stop at two. The other part of me is terrified. I don’t know where we are going to fit another baby in this house. At least, I already have the minivan, so I don’t have to worry about transportation.

We have approximately a year to figure it all out, if I include the length of the pregnancy plus the first three months were the baby will sleep in our room, next to us.

It’s going to be an exciting and bumpy ride, but I’m looking forward to it.

I Love Me A Squishy Newborn January 10, 2009

Posted by Tori in Moms, Newborns.
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There’s nothing quite like holding your newborn in your arms. I’d forgotten how wonderful it feels to hold a sweet little baby. My mother has commented on how lucky I am that both of my daughters like to be cuddled and snuggled. It seems I was not one of those kids, and I didn’t like it at all.

Some people might try to argue that I’m spoiling my kids by holding them so much. However, nothing else feels instinctively more right than hold my kids when they need it. As I type this post, my newborn is stretched across my arms. It makes typing for any length of time slightly painful, but I have a happy, sleeping baby.

I hope I can hold onto these days, as they’ll be gone before I know it.

Coffee and Pregnancy December 18, 2008

Posted by Tori in Coffee, Moms, Pregnancy.
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This blog is obviously titled for a mom that has a serious need for coffee. And I do, trust me. I’ve also had several search hits on coffee in the third trimester, coffee in the second trimester,  and coffee and pregnancy. I thought I might do a post on some of the recent research on coffee consumption during pregnancy.

Let me just say that my caffeine addiction is such that there was no way I was giving up all my coffee. In both of my pregnancies, I cut down on the amount of caffeine I consumed and in my most recent pregnancy, I couldn’t drink more than a couple of small cups, even the decaff stuff, because my stomach did not like the acid.

While I was pregnant, a couple of new studies came out regarding caffeine consumption. The first study linked caffeine consumption to miscarriage. In this study there the conclusion that 200mg or more of caffeine a day raises the risk of miscarriage.  But there is a dissenting voice in this article that says the evidence just isn’t there. A second study links caffeine consumption to fetal growth restriction. This article shows that those who consume more than 200mg of caffeine daily had an increased risk for fetal growth restriction.

Reading both articles, I find the results only semi-conclusive. However, for pregnancy, I follow the moderation method of things. I still consumed my daily coffee, only in lesser amounts. I given birth to two healthy girls, 7lbs 3oz and 7lbs 11oz, respectively. So, the biggest factor is to look at the research, and decide what method works best for you. I knew I couldn’t survive the caffeine withdrawal headaches, so I just reduced my consumption and made my own half-caf blend of my favorite coffee.

Toddled April 10, 2008

Posted by Tori in Moms, Time Management, Toddlers.
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Lately, I’ve been toddled. You know, that insane feeling where your toddler leaves you frazzled and raw at the end of the day?

I think Piper is going through some sort of developmental spurt because she’s been driving us batty. She’s extra fussy and into everything, acting like a wild child. Not to mention that our routine has shot the crapper in a variety of ways.

For starters:

  1. It seems like I get home later and later every day. I don’t know why, but it doesn’t matter what I do, dinner’s never ready until 8:00. I don’t really get to spend time with my daughter or my husband.
  2. My husband’s cousin and her husband live next door to us, and they visit almost every day. Which I don’t mind that much, but it makes it hard it hard to get a consistent routine together and get my daughter in quiet, non-stimulating environment to get ready to go to sleep.
  3. She’s usually so wound up, she ends up going to our bed and not her own. It’s the only way to get her to quiet down and fall asleep. Not to mention that I want to go to bed at a decent hour, as I have to get up early and I tend to get home late.

Our situation has been less than desirable lately, and I’m trying to think of ways to make this better. I’d like to get my husband more involved in some of the evening activities. We’re going to have to sit down and plan everything out. Piper needs a better and more solid routine. I hope we can figure something out soon because we all need to get ourselves in order.

The More You Know, or Education Matters April 8, 2008

Posted by Tori in Moms, Rants.
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A study came out recently, prompting several articles about the fact that comprehensive sex education is more effective than abstinence only education.

While some sarcastic reply wants to come flying out of my mouth, I’ll just say that I am not surprised one bit. Now, this won’t be an issue in my house for several years, but I plan to educate my children fully on the whole sex education spectrum. Knowledge really is power, and from my personal experience, having that knowledge helps a person’s ability to make informed decisions.

Telling kids they shouldn’t do do something is not enough of a deterrent at that age. The tween and teen years are about quite a bit of defiance. It’s a lot like the toddler years in that kids are trying to assert their independence and become their own person.

I am just a firm believer that having that education, knowledge of how conception works, what each method of birth control does, including success and failure rates, and a complete picture of each STD, with transmission info, prevention methods, and whether or not it has cure, is just good information. If teens know that 1 in 4 girls has an STD, knowing how those STDs relate to them is very important.

How many of us were shocked to learn that kids thought that oral sex was harmless, and not really sex? Yet these kids have STDs from oral sex because they didn’t know any better.

Education is important. Having a well rounded view helps decision makers make sound decisions. How the federal government ever thought that showing these kids only a portion of the puzzle would be effective is beyond me, but it won’t happen in my house on my watch. It’s not easy to stop two determined teens from getting out there and having sex if they want to (I know from experience), but giving them the whole picture, benefits and consequences, lets them use their brains in addition to their hormones.

Didn’t you just hate it as a kid when someone would tell you not to do something, but not explain why it mattered? I still get rubbed the wrong way about that today.

Hopefully, the government will look at results such as these and make new recommendations. Or I could be imagining things again.

Some Days a Shower Would Be Nice March 10, 2008

Posted by Tori in Moms, Time Management.
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Over at Castle Debacle, in a interesting conversation about the day, Pete was discussing the limited window in which to shower. As a parent, that feeling is very familiar. There are days when the little one clings so tight I could never make it into the shower, much less do anything important. But when nap time finally comes, along with the opportunity to shower, the call to take care of so many others things beckons like a siren. Who is worried about self-care when some pickup and cleaning could be done?

So, by the end of the day, I feel gross and slimy, in addition to tired and ready to fall into bed. My husband doesn’t seem to understand this and takes off to work his to-do list instead, and then acts as though I’m just lazy or something in failing to shower. I mean, I could shower, but then the dishes and the laundry, and everything else that is important to the household would not be completed. Most of the time I spend the day chasing a toddler, making nap time the one quiet moment of my day.

Right now, I am lucky. I am able to type as the little one lays on the couch with the dog, watching a bit of TV. And asking, “What is Gigi’s name?” She’s going to fall out for a nap here shortly with a bit of luck. So, I’m sneaking in a little writing time while I am stuck on the couch.

Making Coffee for Momma March 9, 2008

Posted by Tori in Bath Time, Coffee, Independence, Moms.
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The little one has taken to trying to make coffee for Momma. I can’t count the number of times recently where I’ve caught her full swing into “making” coffee. It usually involves coffee grounds making it into the water reservoir and lots of pots of water ran through to clean it out. Then a damp paper towel to clean out the places where water doesn’t run. It gets really fun around the millionth time (/sarcasm).

But she’s trying to do something nice for me. At grandma’s, she helps make coffee, and often times she’s making coffee for me because she thinks I need it. So I can’t be too mad at her, but I do wish she would ask beforehand. It’s something we’ve really had to work on here this last week or so. She thinks she is entitled to help herself to anything in the pantry. I’ve tried to designate a particular place for her snacks and items, but right now there are Oreos and Girl Scout cookies on the next shelf up. So she climbs on top of the dog food container, and helps herself. I’ve also caught her in the fridge trying to open the cottage cheese herself. Thank goodness we hadn’t removed the protective seal yet.

She’s two and the independence streak is hitting our house hard. She wants to do it herself. All of it. Without asking. So we’ve been discussing the things she needs to ask about and I make sure she asks me before she eats on the things she does help herself to. There seems to be some progress. And this morning she told me, “No thank you,” when I asked a question. I really like that moment. Manners are important, and we just have to focus on making the right gestures.

As I type, she’s playing in the tub. Over at Life, Writing & Other Things, I’ve been discussing how much I love my laptop. This is one of the reasons why. I am multi tasking in ways that are really cool. We’re talking about what’s on her mind, which is what the animals say in case you wondered, and I’m typing away. Which I have benefit of being able to do well without looking at the keyboard so long as I have a thought finish typing. It’s a great pleasure to be able to sit here and do that. And her little potty makes a great table top for the laptop. It’s just the right height.

No Rest for the Toddler’s Mommy March 8, 2008

Posted by Tori in Illness, Moms, Toddlers.
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Everyone has been sick around here lately. First, the husband got it and passed it to Piper and me. We were treated for an almost ear infection and an almost sinus infection. Then, we came down with something else, which I’m now guessing is the flu. Piper and I got better in time for my husband to come down with it hard. Now, it looks like everyone is on the mend, but no one is fully recovered.

But no matter how sick I feel, I don’t get to rest with a toddler in the house. The sick feeling leaves her foul, whiny, and utterly clingy. Mommy just wants to rest, because she’s sick too, but there’s no hope of that happening. At two, a toddler has a hard time going down for a nap. At least at home, that is. At my mother’s house, she happily gathers her napping supplies and tells my mom that she’s going to take a nap on the couch now.

It probably wouldn’t be so bad, but my husband is often helping his grandpa do things, so he isn’t home a lot on the weekends.

So now that people seem to feel better, I wake up this morning to a tickle in my throat and a lovely cough. I really hope I am not coming down with it again. There’s no rest in sight for me.

Good News, Sad News & Decisions Going Forward February 9, 2008

Posted by Tori in Moms, Pregnancy.
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On Thursday, January 31, my daughter turned two. It’s an amazing place to be. She’s so grown up. I’ve also been thinking for awhile that I’m ready to try for number two. So my happiness was great when I did not get my period last week. I took a test on Wednesday and it was negative. I tested again on Thursday and it was faintly positive. It being so early, I went out and bought another test on Friday and took it that night. Another positive.

We had Piper’s birthday party on Saturday, and because I’m not so good with that kind of secret, we told our families and close friends. I’d had light spotting, but that isn’t all that uncommon for early pregnancy.

Monday night, before I left work, I noticed heavy spotting. It stopped by the time I got home, and while there was some cramping, I felt okay and thought I would be fine after a night’s rest. When I woke up on Tuesday, I knew something wasn’t right. I attempted to go into work because it was THE busy day of the month, but my boss sent me home after I told her what was going on. So I made an appointment with my doctor’s office.

At the doctor, I received an ultrasound and blood work. The ultrasound showed nothing, which was expected because I was less than five weeks along. I stayed home the following day as well because I did not feel well and the doctor’s nurse had indicated that I might need to come back in for more blood work. When the doctor’s office called, I missed it. When I called back, I got the message the nurse had left, which was that my hcg level was zero and that I must have had a false positive on my test.

I was shocked, and I explained to the phone nurse that I’d purchased tests at two different times and that the results both showed positive, and that I found it highly unlikely that I would get two false positives. So she said she would have my doctor (or her nurse) call me back. When I received that call, I explained what I knew to my doctor’s nurse. She told me that my doctor had never seen a zero level that quickly after a miscarriage. She also agreed that it did seem very statistically unlikely to have tests purchased at two different times show positive. So it seemed a wash that the truth would ever be known.

Since then, I’ve done some research on my own, and I’ve developed a theory. I believe that I had a chemical pregnancy, and that while my levels were high to be seen on my home pregnancy test, they were mostly likely dropping by the time I took the second test, which gives my already low level four days to drop to zero before the doctor’s test. Plus, I know that my hormones do weird things in my body. I ovulated two weeks after I had Piper, regardless of the fact that I was pumping 4+ ounces every three hours. The hormones from breastfeeding are supposed to suppress the period, but that didn’t work so well for me.

Regardless, the hope and the pain are in the past now, and though my husband says we weren’t officially trying (A big WHATEVER, that I will address a different day), we’ve decided that we want to now. We were both really excited and happy by the news, and while I knew exactly how much I wanted another child, I think this helped him realize how much he wanted another child.

So onward and upward! We officially trying to have another child.