36 minutes ago
Sunday, May 12, 2013
I have had a million thoughts on mothers today and in my tired fog and desire to reunite with my pillow as soon as possible, I won't be able to sort them all out and record them. I want to at least write one of them down before I sleep. I'll sleep better if I do.
I was at church today and a woman shared a funny story about her husband at the beginning of her talk. It was meant to be an ice breaker, but of course I end up in tears.
She recounted the following. Her husband was about five years old and super angry with his mom. He doesn't remember why, but he remembers being so mad at her. He slammed the door of his bedroom, so she would know just how mad he was and then he sat down to write her a letter. He started it and then immediately realized he would need his mom's help. He opened up his door and in an angry voice, yelled down the the hall, "Mom, how do you spell hate?"
It made me laugh and it made me cry. I know there will be moments in my life like this. I never fully appreciated the sacrifice my mother made for me until I became a mother and I'm sure my children will be equally obtuse.
The idea of rebelling, railing, screaming, fighting and "hating" the very person that is holding you up and helping you in every way, made me feel close to my Heavenly Father and realize just how much like children we must seem to him, since we do the very same thing to him. I love being a mother. I love it for the everyday joys of innocent smiles and also for the deep profound gratitude, closeness and understanding of my Heavenly Father it has brought me. I truly wonder if there is anything that can bring you closer to the Creator than being a mother.
I know I am in the phase where a lot of things I say about being a mom are complaints and while I stand by the statement that motherhood is 100 times harder than you think it will be, I also know that it is 1000 times better than you can ever imagine.
I hope everyone had a Happy Mother's Day... especially my mom Iris Lillie Fields... she's so wonderful that God named flowers after her.
Posted by The Bears at 11:48 PM
Thursday, May 2, 2013
It happened again. I didn't post anything between Ash's monthly update and I'm not even posting it on time. If I wasn't too tired to lift my hand, I'd slap myself. Drum roll please... Here's Ash at Five Months!
He's 18 lbs!
His rolls are coming in fast and furious.
He is very vocal and his new noises make us smile all the time, especially River who likes to imitate his sounds.
He had a few "firsts" this month.
He really discovered his feet and they've been a favorite pastime ever since. I love it when they suck on their toes.
He wore jeans for the first time.
He rolled over for the first time. He did it back to front and I was only quick enough to catch the last part of the roll on camera. (Speaking of rolls, did you count how many he has in the second picture?) He only likes to roll over when he's naked. I guess clothes are too heavy.
It was also the first time he wore overalls. I just think they look so much older when they start wearing denim.
He wakes up every morning happy and then helps ease the rest of us non early birds out of our sleep comas.
He's in the grab everything phase... which has been quickly followed by the put everything in your mouth phase. He's taken out entire shelves of picture frames, because I'm not used to him being so grabby. Also, he might make me a baldy, because those wet little fists are taking out chunks of my hair anytime I forget to wear a ponytail.
We still get flipped off quite a bit, but he hasn't become a thumb or finger sucker. I wish he had a soothing technique, because at five months, he's a worse sleeper than he was at two months and I am lucky to get 3 consecutive hours of sleep. Here's the typical sleep... I use that word lightly... breakdown.
10:00pm Ash wakes and I don't feed him. I try soothing him in other ways. None of them work and he ends up crying for a long time.
11:30pm I go to bed, because River has finally fallen asleep.
12:30 Ash wakes and I do feed him. He falls asleep quickly after.
4:00 Ash wakes again. I feed him and pray he'll sleep for 3 more hours.
6:10-6:40 He doesn't, so we're up for the day and I'm more tired than when I started.
He celebrated his first Easter and begrudgingly let me take a few photos.
He really has become enamoured with River and will look to find him in the room over anyone else... even me and I got the goods. That's been my favorite part of this month. Watching how Ash lights up whenever River is around... no matter how many times he gets accidentally bonked, or played with to roughly.
River sat up unsupported on his five month birthday and I was soooo hoping/expecting Ash to do the same. However, you take away the support and you get a lot of this.
I guess five months was pretty early for River to have such great core strength and balance. I think part of it was a result of the colic and his back always being arched from the pain. It must have been building muscles, while simultaneously driving me crazy. Ash is getting better each day though, so hopefully soon.
We are definitely seeing some ginger/red/strawberry/copper (whatever you want to call them) highlights in his hair. It's so cute. His eyes are still blue, but they do have a tiny ring of earthy brown in the center. Speaking of blue eyed, ruddy cheeked guys with ginger tendencies...
We started noticing quite the resemblance between Ash and the world's best baby whisperer, Robert Andrus. Bear started wondering if he should get a paternity test. Robert would happily claim him and then steal him, so maybe we shouldn't go down that road.
We still call him Baby Ash, but he's getting so big, it might not be appropriate for much longer. Although it's probably more appropriate than when I call him Ashy, Ashy Pants, Ash Potato, Cheeks, Chub Cheeks and Cheekies!!! Maybe he'll end up being one of those big teddy bear football players with a cutesy nickname. I'd be down with that. Those guys are the best. Just don be tackling my lil boy now, ya here!
River sitting up by himself on his five month birthday.
Posted by The Bears at 11:39 PM
Thursday, April 4, 2013
Wow! I'm tired and I can barely think, but I am determined to get the four month post done, before it is time to do the five month post. I hope I remember the essentials.
Ash at Four Months...
He weighs 17 lbs and 9 ounces.
He is about 26 inches long.
He went from being in the 98 percentile in both the height and weight category at his two month appointment, to being in the 87 percentile at his four month appointment. It looks like my giant baby is slowing down a bit.
He went from giving me 5-6 hour sleep stretches at night (with an occasional 7 hours stretch) to regressing back to 2-3 hour stretches... if I'm lucky. Hence the reason for being so tired and barely coherent.
I was able to stop nursing him to sleep and just put him down drowsy, but awake and let him fall to sleep on his own. This made my life substantially easier for the fact I no longer want to kill River for waking up Ash right as I finally get him to sleep.
I still have to nurse him before his naps. I tried to cut out the extra feedings and all hell was released down upon my head. I just top him off though and then burp him and change his diaper, so he is not falling asleep nursing.
This has been the month of the drool. He is sucking and slobbering on everything. I am not sure if he is going to be an early teether. Maybe that would explain the fussiness at night???
He is loving sucking on his hands and as a result, has flipped me off quite a bit this month. It has been hard to get a picture of it, because he is very quick to act innocent once the camera comes out. He doesn't use it as a soothing technique like River did/does with his thumb and he doesn't seem to have a preference for which fingers go in... just whatever reaches his mouth first.
His eyes are still blue. I'm calling it. I officially have a blue eyed child. What a happy surprise. We love brown eyes around here, but we also love the unexpected.
He is really starting to interact with River and is starting to be a pain in the butt to nurse, because he can't focus on nursing when everything River is doing is far more entertaining.
I can tell when he is smiling, even when he isn't facing me, because he wiggles his whole body and you can almost see beams emanating from him. It's true!
He's in the grabbing phase, which is good, because he's starting to be interested in toys and bad, because he can pull out half my hair with one yank of his wet little fist.
We still mostly call him Baby Ash or Ash Phoenix, but I have caught myself calling him Ashy more than once.
The baby rolls are starting to come out in full force, but at the same time, I'm starting to see more and more of his cute little neck.
Ash has almost discovered his feet. He caught hold of his foot once and it kind of scared him.
He still wants to be held standing up. It's his way of helping me lose the baby weight.
He doesn't really like to put weight on his legs. River would stand with support all the time, but Ash just drops it like it's hot. (Is that still a valid pop reference?)
He loves playing patty cake and smiling at his reflection in the mirror.
He wears cloth diapers, but at night, we put him in disposables and we just changed to size 3.
He needs 6-9 month sized clothing, because just 6 months is too tight and very short in the legs. All of River's cloths this size are summer clothes, so I need it to be warm.
Ash is the world's loudest nurser. People turn around to find out what is making all the noise and then are embarrassed when they realize I am breastfeeding. I promise it's not me trying to draw attention to myself!!!
He is rolling onto his sides to reach for toys and getting ever so close to rolling all the way over.
He loves when I sing to him and he's ticklish, especially if you kiss him or blow raspberries under his ribcage
He is always sockless, but not because he would wriggle out of them like River, but because River loves his feet and takes off Ash's socks the second I put them on. In fact, if River is tired, sick or sad, he lays on the couch and says, "Bring me Baby Ash's feet." Weird, but cute!
Mr. Ash has just about the sweetest disposition of anyone I've ever met and also the fiercest temper. I'm sort of hoping the latter fades out with age, but I'm not holding my breath.
Phew! I think that's it.
Rolling on his side to see his friend Brite Brite.
A lot of thumb/finger sucking happening here.
Acting innocent after flipping me off.
Tummy time coaching.
Tummy time success.
I hope Ash has a small personal space bubble, because River is stuck on him like glue.
Starting to grip toys. Yay!!!
Love the concerned face.
Behind the scenes.
Ash trying to smile through the foot kicking war.
Baby River at four months for comparison.
Posted by The Bears at 11:35 PM
Monday, March 18, 2013
From Mr. Cool...
To Mr. Carpool
Introducing the newest member of our family... no... not Ash... Dexter!!!
I've been a little remiss in the introductions department. Dexter joined our family December 1st, 2012 and I finally just got a picture of him. My bad, but it has been sooooo cold for soooo long and I just couldn't bring myself to brave the snow/ice/inversion just for a picture.
While I will miss the Wayne-mobile and even unexpectantly cried when we sold him (pregnancy hormones), I could not be more thrilled to have a van. I know it's not very hip to admit and the typical thing to do is complain, drag your feet, or try a bulky, gas guzzling, less roomy SUV instead. I, on the other hand, have been unashamedly pining for a van since the second I tried opening a car door with a grocery bag in one hand and a baby in the other. Heaven is a door sliding open at the touch of a button.
I told Bear that driving it makes me feel like a millionaire. It's not a vehicle normally associated with millionaires, but it was one of those amazingly rare moments in life where I asked for something and the universe responded ASAP. Bear did have some hesitations. He really liked his truck and it is so nice to have a pick-up around, but he was finally convinced that we should all be able to fit in both vehicles. Since meeting and driving Dexter around, I think he's been fully converted.
The previous owners took excellent care of him and he really does have a lot of get up and go. He's nice and roomy too. The first three weeks we owned him, River would ask to go play in the van and since we were trapped in our apartment for so long, I was happy to oblige. Bonus for us-Everyone in Utah wants a Honda or a Toyota, so Dodge Grand Caravans sell way cheaper here. I am an American Made girl at heart and wanted a Grand Caravan, so win/win for me.
And in case you want to know, he is named after everyone's favorite fictional serial killer, since I used Dexter as an example of mini vans not being emasculating, while trying to convince Bear to sell his truck. I am okay with this for three reasons.
#1 Dexter is fake.
#2 He kills bad guys
#3 It worked. I got my van!!!
Posted by The Bears at 4:07 PM
Friday, March 15, 2013
It all started out so wonderful. My little swimming super hero, The Stingray, loves the water. Why not get him into swimming lessons during this long, harsh winter? He gets to get out of the house, use his muscles, wear himself out, sleep better and learn a life-saving skill. What could possibly go wrong?
As you can see from the smile in this picture, River was just as clueless as me he was about to be kicked out of swimming lessons. Having taught swimming lessons before, I was super surprised we got the axe. Sure kids cried, some refused to get in the pool, you just hoped they'd have a better week next week. I thought it was a universal rule if you teach toddlers anything, you must expect moodiness with a double dose of tears at any moment.
This is the teacher telling River he should never say no to an adult. That is way too much power for a child to have. She also didn't like the fact he said, "I don't like swimming lessons. You make me nervous." She thought he had no business knowing the word nervous and kept giving me sidelong glances as she asked him why he possibly would know that word.
Just so you know, I was a kid that constantly got in trouble with authority figures. I was not a rebel, but truly believed I deserved respect the same as any other human being and I hated being condescended too. If you think kids don't pick up on that, you're wrong. So, while it drives me crazy that River tells me no sometimes, I would never say he doesn't have the right to tell me no. He has every right, but he also must learn actions have consequences and being disrespectful isn't all that fun.
Not to mention, there are plenty of adults in the world that don't have his best interest at heart and I want him to feel free to scream, shout, kick and yell NOOOOOOOOOOOOO to the ends of the earth should he ever come across one. So hows bout ya just stick to the swimming lesson (which she is pretty dang good at) and not tell my kid to never say no to an adult. If he needs a consequence, give him one. And about the vocab issue... I kind of think it's cool my kid has a pretty extensive emotional vocabulary, so leave it be.
My sad little Stingray. Not even the baby sea turtle eggs in his hand were making him feel better. He was a trooper though. He tried his hardest to stop the tears and finish the lesson.
The pink goggles kill me. I think he is the most amazing thing.
Perfection! This is my Stingray edging out Michael Phelps for the win!!!
So after his lessons, Bear swims with him for half an hour. River looks forward to it and loves practicing with his dad. This time the teacher said Bear couldn't get in since River cried so much and then told us to stop the lessons. River was so bummed he couldn't swim with his dad, so Bear took him to a different pool and they swam for three hours. Yep... we're those parents.
But the Stingray will live to swim and smile another day and that's all that matters to me.
Posted by The Bears at 11:09 PM