Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Need your baby to sleep? Put them in a dirty bag.

Pre-sleep smiles
September 27th: We put JJ to sleep as we normally did. Some cuddles, I nursed her, topped her off with a little formula and a cozy PJ. Just a normal bedtime routine, though the PJs were a new addition.

Another hand me down from her big sister - maybe that's why L's sleep good juju took over. That night, JJ slept 7 hours. SEVEN STRAIGHT HOURS. Glorious. Do you know what 7 hours feels like after months of not have 3-4 hours of sleep? It's amazing. I was a new woman.

September 28th: Listen, if it isn't broke don't fix it. We Groundhog's Day that baby. Same routine. Same amount of formula. Same PJs. What? She didn't run a marathon? She didn't leak through her diaper- why not just throw on the sleep sack again?  That night, she slept 6 straight hours. 

September 29th: See September 28th.

(rinse & repeat)

October 8th:
It's been over a week and it's been working. JJ is sleeping anywhere from 6-7 hours straight at night and it's glorious. Not so glorious? The PJs. There remained unwashed. Listen - would you tell a winning football player to wash his jersey before the series play offs? (I know, different sports - I did that for effect.) The ball & chain had a harder time putting her in the crusty PJs night after night. Me? Not so much. Of course, I would have washed it if she had an accident in them - but beyond that? What's a little drool, spit up and wear between friends? When the top started to get cardboard stiff - he started talking about washing our lucky PJ. I put it off for as long as possible. Finally, reason (and the husband) won - and we put her in a 'similar' pair of PJs.  The warmest ones we had because we are convinced it's the fact that she is toasty and warm that lets her sleep. 
A substitution that work

October 9th:
I'm pissed. I was up all damn night with the kid - every 2-3 hours. It isn't being warm. It's the magic of the sleep bag. It's warm, like a blanket but there needs to be more. Maybe but the fact that it's a bag bottom - she has the freedom to kick around. I don't know if it's the 8 day old drool on the damn thing that lets her sleep - but what I do know is we need another sleep bag because we need her to wear these PJs everyday.

We spent our day driving around looking for a complimenting PJ.  Keeping in mind the original is circa 4 years ago it wasn't easy. We found a Babies R Us and Target that carried the sleep bag - but at two different levels of thickness. We kept the thicker one and now have her wearing that one or the original.

True story: the more worn (some might say dirtier) the PJ is, the sounder she sleeps.

True story: If it were up to me, we'd wash the sleep twins less.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Inspired to Do, Make & Create

Listen up: I'm not a crafty person. I can't draw a straight line with the assistance of a ruler. I am not kidding. I've been feeling especially inspired with the help of Pinterest.

(Time out:
Family - if you come here for the pictures, quotes, videos and sit through my snark? This is not for you. I'm about to geek out - come back tomorrow or the next day - I'll post a picture or something.)

What in the world is
Pinterest

You know when you find something online and you're like, "OOH... (and the next statement is something to the effect of any of the following) I want to save this somewhere. I want to do this. I want to buy something like this. This is good to know. What a great idea. That's fun. That's funny. I love this.  Hilarious. Thoughtful. Inspiring." I used to send myself an email, save the link as a favorite or make it a bookmark.  Well... you can do those things still - but for things that you want to visually see together? 
Pinterest.

It's a vision board that people use for all kinds of things. Inspiration, funny quotes, decorating, gift ideas, crafts/DIY projects to do, holiday fun, ideas for photos, meal planning, styling, etc etc. It's really what you make of it.
You find that thing online that starts you saying, "Ohhh." and you... PIN it.
Me: I have different boards for different subjects (you categorize your pins on boards). I use it to keep track of things I want to do, try and remember.  I have holiday boards for things to do during the holidays, or costume ideas for Halloween as well as gifts I want to give, get or funny quotes I like. The list keeps shifting.

Yes folks, another thing to spend time doing online. Too much time
is can be wasted. It was fun when I was decorating the new house.  I could keep track of how much stuff cost as I weighed each product against each other. I read a blog that I think totally explains it - if you want to know the how to and why to. I imagine you can just sign up for an account, but if you need an invite - let me know.  Suzanne over at Behbehblog breaks it down with an easy "how to." If you know me at all, you know I love me some instructions and screen shots. Most people are super overwhelmed to start... and then? They get addicted. Pinterest is the new FB crack - remember the first time? Same thing. You get sucked in.  And then the next thing you know - you are writing paragraphs about something only 1/2 of the intended audience is reading, if that.

Here's my point. 

Martha Stewart can relax - I'm not coming for her job but I AM
doing something with her website.  Like the pin that inspired this
staircase and this face.
Something amazing happened recently. Not only did Pinterest help in the decorating of our new home - but it is inspiring CRAFTS & CREATIVITY up in here.  It started with a favor idea for the kid's birthday, that spilled into Halloween because the kid has a new found love for creepy and now I'm a Princess skirt (tutu) deep into half of a 100% homemade costume and ready for more.Pinterest provides ideas, inspiration, fun and a total time suck.  The only way to make good on that time suckage? Do something! And something I have done. 

It's been 2 weeks and with every little project I feel accomplished.  In the time it took me to start this post and publish it, I'm another 2 projects deep. One completed salt dispenser from a mason jar WHAT? (Note to self:
Pinterest loves herself some mason jars) and craft supply jars.  Sure, if you click through you'll find that all I did was print out labels, print google images, tie knots and cut templates - but dang they are festive.


completed (sucka easy) "projects"


Follow Me on Pinterest

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Making an Entrance

Ever since I saw the series premier of Modern Family I've wanted to be in a scenario to walk into a room, holding up something singing:

Nants ingonyama bagithi
Baba Sithi uhm ingonyama
Nants ingonyama bagithi baba
Sithi uhhmm ingonyama
Ingonyama Siyo Nqoba Ingonyama
Ingonyama nengw' enamabala

What am I talking about? Are you having a seizure? No. It's the opening scene of the Lion King. Obviously, I googled the words - because if you were to ask us it is:

Awwww
She-angway
Shaniqey-wha
Cha-gong-gong


Here's how Modern Family does it:


L saw The Lion King in the theatre and LOVED.IT. We got her the movie - for no reason, just for being an awesome kid. Fine, we also we wanted to watch a movie we haven't seen 1958 times - I'm looking at you Tangled. To show her she was going to own the classic - the ball & chain walked into the kitchen singing. I wish I had my camera out because L had a deep belly laugh and loved it. Then she wanted to try.

Here is her rendition:



We do things big around here. Now most everything, we are raising above our heads singing... it's not old (yet).

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Be Careful What You Nag For

Tuesday
L, "Mama, how about we walk to school tomorrow?"
Me, "Sure thing! That'll be fun!"

Wednesday
L, "Mama, you forgot. We didn't walk to school!"
Me, "Oh I forgot! Tomorrow."
L, "Why'd you forget?"
Me, "That's how forgetting works - you just forget."
L, "Why?"
Me, "I don't know why I forgot - but that is what forget means - you accidentally don't do something or get something - because you forget."
L, "Why'd you forget though, Mama?"
Me, "I don't know. Tomorrow."
L, "Will you forget?"
Me, "I won't know until I do or if I do. Tomorrow, okay - it'll be fun."

Thursday
Me, "We don't have time to walk to school today, but I'll pick you up and we'll walk if I can leave early enough!"
L, "Will you forget?"
Me, "I don't think so - but you never know!"

Fast forward, 4 hours... I do not forget and pick her up - on time - at school.

L, "Did you walk here?"
Me, "I did!"
L, "Will I walk home?"
Me, "Yup - with me - that's how this works."

Fast forward, 2 hours and we finally see the door to our house.

L, "Maybe next time we take the car, Mama. Don't forget."
 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What is in a name?

I realize there are questions both from friends & family and those reading what in the what does JJ stand for and how'd we get there. Like I did for L, I'll explain. 

Truth: we accidentally made life a wee bit harder on our girls - right out of the gate.
Good news: It will (hopefully) build character.

My girls will likely never be able to be out and about and buy a souvenir with their name on it.  Whoops. Sorry. But really, who needs a key chain with their name on it? More good news? There is always etsy.com; they can get their personalization on in other ways.

L's name is common, but spelled in a different way. Is it on purpose that it is spelled in an uncommon way? No. It just sort of happened. I feel for her, really I do - but it is what it is. And to be fair, her name was a name in my head before it was cool again. I'm ahead of the trend, who knew? She will forever have to spell her name out, first AND last. And the last? It's a doozy. JJ is no different. Sorry, kid. But we couldn't leave it just for your sister.

True story: we had 2-3 names for a boy or a girl that we were talking about for months. NONE of which were what we ended up naming JJ. For the first two weeks JJ joined the family, I had to say her name out-loud, a lot, because I wasn't used to it yet.

The girls names we talked about, we still love.  I feel pretty strongly that one of the names, in particular, is coming; she just isn't here yet. {Spoiler alert: we hope to have three - and while I would love a little boy - I feel like we'll have another little girl} We spent months talking about these names but there was something that told us we hadn't said "THE" name just yet.  The Wednesday before JJ was born (who was born on a Monday) we threw all the names out and decided to consider other names.

The ball & chain threw out the name Jocelyn ...which gave way to J0ss as a nickname.

Facts:
  1. J0ss really spoke to me,  I LOVED it. 
  2. Jocelyn, not so much.  I actually have pretty strong feelings against Jocelyn (not as a general rule on the name - just for our kid).
  3. The nickname I had intended for L didn't go the way I thought it would last time so I'm hesitant.
  4. I have pretty strong thoughts about names.
I couldn't get "J0ss" out of my head though, so I did some reconnaissance on the name. Knowing my obsessions thoughts with names I wanted it to be right. Turns out? We found the name.

Pretty sure this is the moment we decided
and agreed on her name - in the delivery room.
J0ss is a variant of Joseph, which is my father-in-law's middle name. I am obsessed with having some kind of tie to family in a name.  I feel strongly our children's names should be either directly inspired or connected to family names or through some crazy ass 6 degrees of separation - connection; otherwise known as a humor me Hail Mary stretch.  Since I can't just have a nickname as the full name - we went with J0sslyn. It's a pretty name, it's slightly different, it's totally nicknameable - and I thought with her sister's name it went perfectly. L's full name is two names in one as well and they go nicely together.  We went with Jane as her middle name as Jane is the female version of John, my father-in-law's first name and not only do I dig JJ as another nickname possibility but her initials are my father in law's initials and L's initials are my moms. It's perfection.  As much as we loved some of the other names we were thinking of when we met JJ we knew she fit with J0ss.  J0ss was thrown in the game - and then when we met her? We just knew.

Now that you know her name - let's talk about confusion with the issues that come with the name (besides the inevitable spelling issues).

Issue 1: No, I did not name my child after...
  • J0ss Stone - that said, whenever we do the inevitable "Joshlyn? Joceyln? Josh?" dance - I go with, "J0sslyn. J0ss - like J0ss Stone." 
  • J0ss & Main - don't know what it is? It's a flash sale site. To be fair it is the ONLY email sign up like this site (think groupon, livinsocial that sort of thing) that I allow come to my inbox straight, verses having it go to a folder in my email that I can check out when I have time or in the mood vs. being hit with daily sale emails. It took a few weeks to realize the connection. Dumb - I know, but the truth. 
    • Funny side note: one of the middle names we were thinking of before J0ss came into the picture? Macy. Not after Macy Gray OR Macy's but either way both would have been assumed as well.
  • J0sslyn Jacks from General Hospital.  Side note: all the "actors" on the soap call her Jocelyn. They add the E or the A, so frankly I didn't even know her name was J0sslyn until after I got a few questions on the GH connection. Her middle name is John.  Which I love and we considered John as a (girl) middle name for one of our other name choice and then again for J0ss.  Thanks B we didn't because again until I did some research I didn't know that was her name - and no one would ever believe me if I said it wasn't after GH if we had John as a middle name. 
Issue 2: Her actual name. 
It is J0sslyn. I'll give you some leeway with just hearing her name - FINE. Perhaps you'll hear Jocelyn some have even heard Joshlyn.  When it's spelled out and you read it  - use the letters.  Letters in the word make up the sounds you say. That's how words work.  When you spell & read it - J0sslyn. J0SS.LYNNE. It is NOT JocAlynne. There is no A. No E. Not three syllables. Two: J0ss-lyn. You probably read this whole post reading "JocAlynne." Good news though... J0ss, super easy to say & spell - just go with that.  

Issue 3:
Parental guilt. 

See issues 1 & 2 - home girl is going to be dealing with this for the rest.of.her.life. Sorry girl.  We love you... and not to place blame... but... you'll notice it was your dad's idea. I'm just saying. 

Sunday, October 2, 2011

When Good Ideas Go Bad

Last week was our girl's birthday. It was her first birthday away from family.  We wanted it to be special. More on that, later. One of the things we did was set up some of her current favorite animals having a tea party waiting for her, after school - including a drawing on her chalkboard saying "Happy Birthday, L!" Cute idea, right? So. Cute. 

She loved it.

The next day was her first day without our au pair - she went home and of course that's sad for our girl. More on that, later.  I thought it would be special to make this something we (sometimes) do. Day two I set up the tea set again, different animals, another one sitting on the couch reading a book and changed the picture. We made it look like the troll was up to mischievous good.

The first full day without L's Annie was nothing short of a sht show.  L was sad and acting out. It was awesome (alert: that's sarcasm). There were tears (hers not mine, yet). There were time outs. There was a lot going on. We finally got out of the house (plan: 2 pm, actual departure: 4:30 pm) and before we set sail for our errands I sent C a text.

"Can you do me a favor? If you get home before us - rearrange the tea party - make them play a game or something... and add some kind of message to be a good girl and give me a damn break. Maybe she will listen to her animals."

He responded with, "On my way home - will do that as soon as I get home!"
Fast forward: it turns out a tree came down behind our neighborhood and of course our (side) of the block was affected. After L & I finished our errands, we picked up the ball & chain- went out to dinner - thinking that the electricity would be on by the time we got home (company said 8 pm).  We arrived home at 8:45 pm. Lights out. Total darkness. We spun it as an adventure! We'd all sleep in bed together, hang out - read a book by flashlight. It's just like camping! Everyone loves camping!! (Except us - we left that out) It'll be awesome!

When we came back in my dear husband thought... oh wait - let's be sure to see if the stuffed animals have been up to anything while we were gone. Yeah, nothing like a severe creep factor to add to an already scary situation for our newly but very emotional four year old. I WISH I could have taken a picture of what the scene was... in the dark... being spotlighted by a flashlight - but you can imagine it, can't you? 

(picture this in TOTAL darkness)
Nothing creepier than Rudolph & Paddington Bear going head to head in the dark in an aggressive game of Candy Land while being looked over by a fairly aggressive and threatening note sent by two sociopath trolls. Just when you think we have a great idea? We go and take it too far.

Needless to say she slept with us that night and the trolls have a new creepy factor to them, I'm not sure will wear off.
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