Sunday, January 30, 2011

I'm Insane


This is one of those moments I thought about as a pre-parent, but couldn't conceptualize actually happening.

I am going on a four-night trip for work at the end of February and I'm already terrified that I have to leave Abby.

Will she think I've abandoned her? Will I scar her for life? How will I leave her? How long will I cry in the car? I'm about to cry right now.

It is absolutely ridiculous. My "rational" self knows that everything will be fine. She probably won't even realize I'm gone until I've returned.

But I am so scared! It's pathetic.

More than likely, Tom is secretly hoping I don't bring this up every single day until the last week of February. We'll see. It could get ugly.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Abby's Life with the Kitties

A little insight into the "interaction" between Abby and Luke and Leia.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Thank goodness for more surface area

So, after what I will call "The Big Poop 2011" (I will spare details), we have officially moved on to Size 2 diapers.

Yes, in our little world of baby, this is a significant milestone. But more important than the growth milestone is the fact that we may be able to avoid the endless scoops of Oxi-Clean we have had to put into pre-treatment and the washing machine.

My stubborn self avoided trying on the Size 2s because I knew as soon as I did, I would want to change out all of the Size 1s. I went as long as I could stretching those Size 1 diapers until last night's explosion when enough was enough.

The really sad thing is that I carried her up to her bath (face-out and as far away from me as possible so to avoid the *ahem* dirtiness) giddy to put the new diapers on her. Giddy.

I gave her a bath, dried her off and ...


... oh, how exciting it was when I put the diaper around her waist and there was so much coverage!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Do Nursery Rhymes Do Damage?

Seriously, nursery rhymes are insane. I know that they have origins, but still.

Rock a bye baby, on the tree top
When the wind blows, the cradle will rock
When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall
And down will come baby, cradle and all!

Why the violence? Does the baby die? Awful!

Wee Willie Winkie runs through the town,
Upstairs and downstairs in his nightgown,
Tapping at the window and crying through the lock,
Are all the children in their beds, it's past eight o'clock?

First off, this is creepy. Secondly ... Wee Willie Winkie? Really? Yes, my mind is in the gutter.

Three blind mice, three blind mice,
See how they run, see how they run,
They all ran after the farmer's wife,
Who cut off their tails with a carving knife,
Did you ever see such a sight in your life,
As three blind mice?

Okay, now we're cutting off the tails of mice? I don't know if I can live with myself if that's what I preach to Abby.

Old Mother Hubbard
Went to the cupboard
To get her poor doggie a bone,
When she got there
The cupboard was bare
So the poor little doggie had none

This is just depressing.

There was an old woman who lived in a shoe,
She had so many children she didn't know what to do!
So she gave them some broth without any bread,
And she whipped them all soundly and sent them to bed!

Well, isn't this just a stand-up woman?

I'm not sure I'm going to be able to share these with Abby ... may have to stick with Sesame Street ...

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Frazzled World of Motherhood

I seriously feel like I'm losing my mind sometimes and I don't even have a "difficult" baby.

I think the sole responsibility of accounting for another person is enough to drive one relatively insane, as evidenced by the fact that I managed to pack all of Abby's milk for the day while forgetting to include nipples for the bottles.

My dad called in a panic ("I don't have any nipples!") and I had to make an emergency run to Target.

(On a random note, it is really irritating that Medela doesn't sell nipples and the part that screws the nipple on top of the bottles. They just sell the rubber nipple itself. So I had to buy three bottles. Awesome. Now we have a million and three bottles.)

I really don't understand how I managed to get this frazzled. As I said, Abby is an angel-baby. She sleeps through the night (10-11 hours straight) and it content the majority of the time. So why am I so exhausted?

I guess the mere fact that I have to cart her around with me wherever I go (this weekend it was a basketball game and a baby shower) and then care for her for the majority of the day is enough. I suppose it results in mental exhaustion and the desire to have some "me" time at the end of the day. That "me" time translates into staying up too late, which then results in sleep deprivation.

Throw in Abby getting up at 3:45 last night and eating for an hour and I was definitely behind on my coherency.

You'd think that I'd be able to manage, though, with some shred of alertness. Apparently not.

It has me more than impressed with the endless number of mothers who manage to stay awake despite their child waking up at all hours of the night and struggling through colic, acid reflux and the like.

So this post this morning goes out to those mothers. I bow down with respect.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

To ask or not to ask?

I am fascinated with human nature.

I am not someone who need to put Abby in pink to make sure everyone knows she is a girl, but it shocks me just how often people assume she is a boy.

I will put her in Michigan or Lions' gear. For Halloween, she was wearing black and orange. What shocked me was that I didn't get asked if she was a boy or a girl, they just referred to her as "he."

Do strangers just assume I would only take a boy to a sporting event? Does she not have enough frill?

When I don't know the sex of a baby, I'll often ask, "What's the name?"

This keeps me from having to truly reveal I am clueless as to the sex, while still getting my answer.

When you really get thrown through a loop is when the name is androgynous like Taylor or Alex. Then you're back at square one trying to figure out what sex the baby actually is.

Gets me thinking about those headbands again ...

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Fear of Becoming Uninteresting

I like to fancy myself relatively entertaining. I mean, I'm no Ellen Degeneres (yes, that is the comedian that popped into my mind) or anything, but I think I have a certain charm (::wink, wink::).

Post-baby, I have a fear of becoming incredibly dull. What if I get to a point where the only things I want to talk about include baby excretions or babbling?

My biggest fear is conducting a State of the Union on potty training.

(Can you envision one side of the room vigorously applauding and giving a standing O for No. 1 and the other side for No. 2? "And we are looking to pee in the potty!" ::applause and cheering commence:: Okay, I'm done.)

Not that I'm actually a stranger to this type of behavior. I have enlightened many a folk with some thrilling cat stories in my day.

But who doesn't want to hear about Leia knocking on our door at 4:30 a.m. because she's hungry? Or the fact that Luke fetches? Or our new cat tree? Nobody? Anybody?

I do find this post ironic considering the entire purpose of this blog is to talk about my child and my cats, but maybe that is the point: we do better in packs.

Got a good cat story? Hit me with it. Did your child throw up all over your work outfit this morning, leaving you 15 minutes late for work? Tell me about it. Do you feel like swooning over that milk smile your little one just shot at you for no apparent reason? Love it.

The ultimate fear is becoming "that parent" to the "outsiders."

As a non-parent I hated hearing phrases like, "You'll understand when you're a parent." I felt talked down to. Now I get it.

It's not that you become a better person as a parent. It's not that you become smarter. Instead, your brain shifts and you find yourself entertained sharing stories about naps, spit up and diapers.

There's got to be hope for me. I can be entertained by all those things, but still be interesting to the rest of the world. Right?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

My name is Chrissie ... and I'm a caffeine addict

More specifically, a coffee addict.

Before I became a mother, I fancied myself a coffee addict. But I also considered a coffee addict someone who had to have coffee every morning.


I have to have coffee every morning ... and afternoon ... and sometimes evening.

I used to think someone who drank as much coffee as I currently do (sometimes three cups in the morning and then another in the afternoon if I feel so inclined) was on a sure-fire path toward an ulcer.

Now I see my habits as a method of survival.

Sometimes, in my fast-paced world of routine, my love of coffee is what keeps me moving toward the next day. I don't know if I should consider it sad that I sometimes fall asleep with my mouth watering as I think about the next morning's cup.

You think I'm exaggerating.

It was the moment that happened for the first time that I realized I might have a problem.

But I embrace it. I look at it as the silver lining of sleep deprivation.

It's the little things in life that keep us moving day-to-day (both figuratively and literally ... but I digress) and this is one of my little things: my morning cup(s) of coffee.

It could be worse. I could ingest my caffeine in (::gasp::) pill form as I did in my college days.

Okay, how many flashed back to Saved By the Bell?

"I'm so excited! I'm so excited!"

Perhaps I've already overdone it this morning ...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Parenting First: I Got "The Look"

Yep. It happened.

I was at church with Abs on Saturday evening. Tom was out of town, so it was just she and I. Considering the time of year (and all of the lovely illnesses I've heard are going around), I didn't want to take Abby to the nursery, not that I need to justify myself.

I was in the very back row of the auditorium; literally the seat against the wall and directly next to the door to escape if needed.

Before service started, I was standing up with her and was about to give her a bottle. She fussed for just a minute before I started feeding her.

That's when it happened.

An older woman (I'm awful with ages ... maybe early 60s?) did the slow-turn-and-glare. Her presentation read, "Why do you have your baby here with all the adults?"

I probably deserved it, considering I have been guilty of those thoughts in my day. Yes, I admit it.

Ultimately, the service went fine, but there were a few times I had to leave to go to the crying room to calm her down (which I did at the slightest hint of fussing by her).

This got me thinking, though.

What kind of "responding parent" am I going to be when it comes to "the look"?

I figure I have a few options.
  1. The snapper. I can be "that mother" who responds quickly with, "Is there a problem?" I'm not sure if I have the ability to be a snapper, though, because being one also requires the ability to come up with snappy comebacks in the event someone offers up an unwarranted remark. I also wonder if being a snapper is a good model for Abby.
  2. The glarer. This is currently the front runner, because I have an uncanny ability to get my point across without using words. I also see the benefit of this in that the execution of a well-timed glare could get my point across sufficiently while going unnoticed by Abby (and any future children).
  3. The ignorer. Do I pretend a look or a comment simply didn't happen? I'm wondering if there is a benefit to this. Does it truly give a proverbial "F you" if I don't acknowledge the attack? Not sure.
As of right now, these are the options I have come up with. Perhaps when I'm "in the field" I will come up with some others, spur-of-the-moment.

I'll keep you updated.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Accessories? Or not.

One thing I have been adamant about for a long time is my distaste for baby headbands.

I don't fault people who use them, but they are just not for me. I decided that I didn't need to crush my child's skull so people would know she is a girl.

Well, I am now in a moral dilemma. Abby has an abundance of hair and I began toying with the idea of using a headband (or other hair accessory).

I grabbed the headbands I have out of Abby's room today, but never got around to trying them out.

Well, Tom saw them on the table and called me out.

"Going to crack!"

I haven't jumped off the cliff yet ... but another "I'll never" may be checked off the list in the near future ...

Is this normal?

I'm going to go with no.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Hide and Seek

One of the best parts of having cats is where you will find them.

I ran upstairs to grab something and found Luke. (Please ignore the drying laundry)

Saturday, January 15, 2011


So ... I was just about to call it a night after the Packers went up by 34 (I think it's safe to say it's over), when Leia walked over to the couch with conviction as though she just noticed I was sitting there.

Now ... this.

I just can't bring myself to go to bed. Sigh. So tired.

Shameless Comedy

Getting Abby to laugh is the end-all, be-all.

I am willing to dance like an idiot to the random tune of a little red umbrella, constantly make faces that would be relevant at my own surprise birthday party and make up catchy tunes to everything from diaper changing to bathing.

The soundtrack of my parenting would currently include:
  • "My Sockie Came Off" (An instant classic)
  • "Somebody's Stinky (I think it's Abby!)"
  • "I Pooped"
  • "Abby's Great (She's Sweet Like Chocolate Cake)" (Rendition of the tune made famous by Bill Cosby in his 80s stand-up special)

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Desperate Kitty

Poor Leia.

She could be found on my lap every single night pre-Abby. Now she waits her turn. Patiently.

But when it's time for her to get Mommy Time, she goes for it.

Leia tonight:

I mean, how do you disturb this?

The Switch

I think there's a switch that goes off the second you become a mom. All of a sudden, things you never, ever, EVER thought you'd be excited about get you irrationally excited.

My excitement items so far:
  • Poop. I used to be completely unable to even utter the word -- it disgusted me. Now it gets me excited because I know everything's operating properly. Definitely wouldn't have believed this about myself pre-Abby.
  • Screw-on caps for breast milk bottles that you can set to the date you pumped. I nearly threw a party for the discovery of this product. Pre-Abby, I didn't even think "breast" and "milk" would be uttered (no pun intended, but HA!) in the same phrase regarding myself.
  • Pink clothing.  I proudly told people that my daughter wouldn't be wearing pink every day. Right. Then Tom dressed up Abby in a blue sleeper and she looked like a boy. I couldn't have my pretty little girl looking like a boy, now, could I?
  • Abby reaching for a ladybug toy in her play yard. It's at moments like these you realize your life has completely changed. No more all-night partying and dancing for you. It's your child's ability to locate an object and recognize she has the ability to touch it that gets your mojo going.

Luke's Ice Obsession

Luke has developed an obsession with ice cubes.

Because I dropped many of them on the kitchen floor and Luke saw that they slide around quite easily, he started to get really excited whenever I would go to the refrigerator to fill up my water glass.

Of course I can't resist giving him ice cubes. So I go to the freezer and pull out ice cubes and take them to his water dish. He gets SO EXCITED. As soon as I get them out of the freezer and start walking toward the water dish, he starts making noise, "Mooow! Mooow!" and running toward it.

Then ... it begins.

Luke's (and sometimes Leia's) 10-15 minute stare down with the ice cubes.

Yep. They sit there. And sit there. And sit there.

I think it's funny.

To non-pet parents, this story often evokes this look:

I think it's funny, anyway.