Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Make Some Memories

It is only Wednesday but I have already put in about 30 hours at work. I haven't had a single moment to do anything around the house and I feel like I haven't seen Charla all week. Right now, having two incomes is important for my family. Tim was laid off for most of 2009 and 2010, so we have a bit of catching up to do. I still feel guilty though.

This is the last year before Charla enters kindergarten. I'm excited for this milestone but terrified at the same time. Once this year is over there can be no more denying that my baby is a child. I'm sure most of my worries are the garden variety; peers, homework, scheduling. This is nothing I won't be able to handle (until perhaps the teen years, I'll get back to you on that).

Having a child has been both exactly what I thought it would be like and nothing like I thought it would be like. I knew there would be challenges and hard times but I didn't realize how such small stuff had the ability to wind me up. I knew I would love my child but I had no idea the amount of fierce protection I would feel for her. I knew it was my job to help her grow but I had no way of knowing how fast these years would go.

I try to absorb all the good moments as much as possible. On a day to day basis this can be quite tricky. Especially after putting in all that time at work and having another 10 hours to look forward to on Friday. When I get home I'm tired and what I really would like is to sit down and do nothing. However, I know these years don't last forever. The years of "mom, will you play with me?", "mom, push me in the swing", "mom, can you read me a story?", mom, I want to cuddle", "mom, you're my best friend".

Tomorrow I have a day off. Of course I have the plans to vacuum the living room, go to the grocery store, and finally take care of the dishes piling up in the sink. But in between all that I'm going to spend time making some memories with my girl.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Job Offer

I got a job offer today and for just a minute I was really thinking hard about it. I currently work at the preschool where Charla goes. I like it there. The pay is decent and the cost of Charla's care is drastically reduced. The main problem is I don't have my own room, instead I float around from room to room and help out.

The job offer came from a preschool I used to work at. I liked working there and only left because I found a new job closer to home and with cheaper child care rates. I would seriously take this job offer if it wasn't for Charla. I can't see pulling her out of a school she's been at for the past 2 years, 1 year before she starts kindergarten.

The preschool I currently work at is within what will be Charla's school district, so she will be bused there for after-school care. The job offer comes from a preschool 20 minutes from home, so I would have to figure out something to do with Charla from 3:30 until I get off work.

I know I have to do what is best for the family, but a large part of me does wish I could leave the place I'm currently at and go back to the previous preschool.

Thursday, September 6, 2012


I've never been overly fond of choices. If someone asks me where I want to go to dinner I'll usually say I don't care. If I'm asked what I want to do during the day I'll say whatever. It's not that I don't care about those things but that I don't want to make the wrong choice.

So, when I was faced with the life-changing decision of having a second child it took me awhile to figure out what I wanted. Charla was conceived in just 3 months, quick and easy. The second time around hasn't worked out that way. I'm not sure what's going on because I've been too scared to make the leap and talk to my OB about it. Today I finally decided to take the bull by the horns and set up a blood test for next week. I think this decision came about because in just 1 more year Charla will be beginning kindergarten. I want another child but if it isn't going to happen naturally, I'll have to help it along a little. I'm going to keep thinking positive thoughts that 2013 will be the year!

Coming to this decision took me almost 2 years. It didn't help that my husband was laid off for about half of that time. It's really hard to imagine bringing a new life into the world when you're struggling to make ends meet. Throw into the mix the extra cash needed for medical assistance and it's enough to make anyone turn and run! I always knew this decision was hanging over my head though.

Each month my period came I would become depressed and crabby. Nothing made me happy and I just wanted to crawl into bed and sleep. Even non-hormonal days could do that to me if I got to thinking about the unfairness of it all. I figured fate had dealt me this hand as a way of teaching me a lesson. Perhaps I wasn't patient enough with Charla, I was too selfish, I wasn't loving enough or I just wasn't a good parent/person. Obviously none of those thoughts were true, but wanting something badly enough and consistently being told no has a way of getting to you. Some months I would even consider ending it all so I wouldn't have to deal with the disappointment anymore and the only thing that kept me going was Charla.

Now that I've made the decision to pursue having a second child I feel lighter. A weight has been lifted and I have some hope that the next year will bring my family happy things. I need to start learning how to make decisions that will make me happy. Perhaps the last 2 years weren't the best time to have another child, but I really should have sat down and come up with some sort of plan of what the right time would feel like. Then I wouldn't have had to deal with the continued disappointment, frustration and wishful thinking of the last couple years.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

What's Been Going On!

I can't believe it's been 2 years since I last wrote on this blog. So much has happened that I couldn't possibly begin to catch up. It seems like such a long time yet at the same time it seemed to have passed in the blink of an eye.

One of our biggest life changes happened about 6 months ago when I went back to work full time. Charla adjusted to this change relatively quickly and just today she began her last preschool year before kindergarten starts next September. I can't believe that milestone is just around the corner. It excites me and scares me at the same time. I'm excited for all the new challenges Charla will face. All the growing up she will accomplish. But I'm also scared about what entering the school system will mean for her. I have had both positive and negative experiences with public school and I really just want the best for my daughter. But right now I can put those thoughts off to the side and focus on the year ahead.

I'm amazed at how much Charla has come out of her shell over the last year. Before she was always more timid and wouldn't readily approach children her age. Lately though she seems to have gained a lot of confidence and easily joins in with the other kids on the playground. Due to her May birthday she will be one of the younger kids in her class. This means academically she has a bit of catching up to do. She has just begun to print her name but the letters are still all over and some are upside down. She can identify many uppercase letters but needs to work on the lowercase. She can count up to 14 without any mistakes but often skips a few numbers after that. She has just begun identifying the numbers 1 to 6 when we play games, such as Trouble.

I'm so proud of her though and I try to express that to her on a daily basis. She is such a friendly girl. Quick to open her heart to people and animals. She has a very good stand on what is right and wrong and I've been told that she is one of the most well-behaved children in her class. She can express herself very well and her sense of humor is in full bloom. Including all the age-appropriate bathroom humor. Her favorite joke today was "knock knock", "who's there?", "diaper", "diaper who?", "poopy diaper"! I can't help but laugh along with her.

The one downfall of my going back to work has been the amount of time I've lost. On one hand I loved spending all day, every day with Charla. On the other hand though, we were driving each other nuts. Still, losing out on 40 hours per week with my girl has taken its toll. I would love to say that I spend each moment I have with her doing quality things. The sad truth is though that I'm often so tired at night from working all day that our quality time involves curling up on the couch and watching some tv. Some days are obviously better than others, but the mommy guilt still kicks in pretty often. I've really had to choose what's more important to me, a clean house or some quality time with my family. The house loses more often than not!

This started out as a mom blog and, while I definitely plan on telling many Charla stories, I also want to use it as a place to vent some of my thoughts and feelings. Lately I've been feeling a bit run down. I'm not sure if it's from working or from parenting or just some run-of-the-mill blues, but I think it would do me good to type my thoughts out. Sometimes I get an "aha" moment while I'm thinking to myself. Yesterday was one of those "blah" days and after thinking about what could be wrong I came to the conclusion that I often get that way after visits with my family. I will talk more about this another day though. Right now it's late, I'm tired and I have a 10 hour day looming before me tomorrow. Thankfully after tomorrow I have Thursday off and I want to spend that day doing something fun both with Charla and for myself!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Gonna Get Away

I am really looking forward to this weekend. My husband, Charla and I are going to go on a long weekend vacation with my parents, my brother and my sister-in-law. This will be our first vacation as a family! It will also be the first time Charla's slept over night somewhere besides her bedroom. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that things will work out okay but I may need a vacation after this vacation!

Yesterday I was looking for a boarding kennel for our dog to stay at. I am amazed at all the luxury kennels out there! Seriously, kennels had swimming pools, televisions, stereos and privacy walls. My dog just needs food, water and a place to relieve herself! I did end up finding a good kennel at a fraction of the price because guess what?! There weren't any unnecessary accommodations! I know some people treat their dogs as their kids, and I'm not knocking that. But to me, my dog is my dog, she's a member of the family and deserves comfort but that doesn't mean a television in her kennel.

Preschool has been going really well for Charla so far. Every afternoon when I pick her up, she tells me that she had fun. Then she'll tell me a little about what she did. Usually she says she played with the little ponies and the drums! My sister-in-law is a teacher in Charla's room and she's been telling me all about the cool stuff Charla's been doing. I guess she's starting to make friends with some of the other kids. She's talking a lot (this doesn't surprise me!) and knows almost all of her shapes and colors. She still cries a little when I drop her off in the morning, but she's done before I've even walked out the door. Right now she's only going twice per week but I might increase that to 3 times per week in the winter depending on how bored she is at home.

My husband, who has been laid off since early November, finally got a job. However it's only temporary. It was supposed to last 9 weeks but it looks like it's going to take even less time than that. The construction industry just isn't good right now. Hopefully next spring things will start picking up. In the meantime we've been trying to make the most of his being home. In the end of October he'll probably be running out of unemployment. I could write an entire post ranting about the unfairness of this but I'm not even going to go there. The only thing I will say is that so many politicians seem to think my husband must be lazy to have been out of work for so long. That is not the case at all. Open your eyes, there's no work! End rant.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Just Can't Decide!

I think we have now entered the "terrible two" stage! Of course, things aren't terrible all the time, there's plenty of terrific moments as well. I love hearing all the new words and phrases Charla comes up with on a daily basis. I enjoy watching her try new things for herself and telling me that she will "do self". The problem enters in the form of indecision and dissatisfaction of an outcome.

Many child experts say to give your child choices. This way they feel in charge of their life to a certain extent and will hopefully be more cooperative. However, this is how choices around here are working:

Me: Do you want cereal or oatmeal for breakfast?
Charla: Oatmeal.
Me: Ok, I will make you oatmeal. (Getting her bowl down to mix her oatmeal.)
Charla: No, cereal.
Me: Last time, do you want cereal or oatmeal?
Charla: Cereal

This seems to be what happens with every option I give her. Sometimes she will even throw a fit because she said one thing but really wanted another. I have gotten to the point that I will let her change her mind once. After that though, she needs to stick with her decision!

She's also starting to cut back on her sleep, but I'm not sure she's ready to. By the afternoon the indecision starts getting even worse, to the point that she's telling me she doesn't want to eat dinner when I know for a fact she's hungry! I try telling myself this is only a phase, but it's not working because life is basically one big phase and when this one is over it will be time for a new one!

Sunday, June 6, 2010


We had a busy weekend and this week is going to be pretty busy as well. On Saturday my husband, Charla and I went to a Pirate Festival. Charla got to see a pirate ship, watch cannons go off and listen to a guitar player sing some songs. She had a great time. There was a huge blow up bouncy house/slide thing that she really wanted to try out, but I thought it would probably be better if she waited until next year.

This morning we went out to brunch with my brother and sister-in-law. I haven't gone to a brunch in a long time and it was really good. Charla had a great time and seemed to enjoy the food. Afterwards, we went to a really overpriced sporting goods store to buy a net. My husband wants to take Charla to a pond and do some frog catching, so she was really excited.

Tomorrow will be Charla's first day in preschool! We decided she needed to start socializing with other kids a bit more so signed her up for 2 mornings per week. My sister-in-law is an assistant director/teacher in a preschool/day care nearby so that is the one Charla will be attending. I'm a bit nervous about how this is going to go. She has been going through a bit of separation anxiety lately, but I'm hoping the worst of that is over. It will help that her aunt will be a teacher in her room.

I'm looking forward to some quiet mornings, but I'm also going to miss Charla. I have a feeling drop off is going to be hard tomorrow, for both of us. I've been talking about school with Charla and she seems excited but I know when the time comes she's going to be nervous and wondering what's going on. I just hope that after the initial sadness/fear she'll dive in and have fun.