Sunday, March 21, 2010

Forced Family Time

**Hey friends! Last night after my husband's band played their gig in Houston, they went to eat. While they were eating their van was broken into and all of their bags were stolen (laptops, ipods, some wallets, you know... all that personal information!!) Anyways, please just say a little prayer that they get what is necessary to replace what was lost! Thanks guys!**

When we were growing up we ate pretty much all of our dinners together at home. Mom would cook and then Josh and I would take turns cleaning the kitchen... and I don't think we did that great of a job now that I think back on it. Well when we got into junior high and high school, we spent more and more time away from home doing whatever so when we were home, my parents established what I like to refer to as "forced family time."

I remember being in my room, minding my own business, Josh would be in his room, minding his own business, and I'm not sure where Amy was... but anyway, we would be in our various corners of the house and it would get close to around 7:00 I would hear my dad yell, "AMANDA! JOSH! Get in here!" And then after that happened a couple of times, Josh and I would drag ourselves out of our rooms and go sit in the living room.

That's it.

We would have to go sit in the living room with my parents and watch them watch TV. I would get so annoyed at this. I could not believe that they would make me leave the comforts of my favorite room and come literally SIT in the same room with them just to do nothing! *I would always just pretend that I didn't like whatever they were watching even though I really did, and would just sit with this look of disgust on my face. haha...*

My parents just wanted us to be in the same room as them because they loved us. So forced family time it was.

Well now I'm all grown up (haha) and make Eli and Judah come sit with me all the time and I know that I will continue to do that for many years to come!

So my parents invite Wes and I to dinner at their house with Amy and her boyfriend. They tell us they are cooking out and they have a fun activity planned for us. oh great...what in the world could this possible be?? We are always up for a free meal and hanging out with my folks so we went over there not having any idea what this "activity" was going to be.

We eat a delicious meal, have crazy good dessert, and then it's time for the activity to commence. My dad tells us that it is a game and that he is the MC. I roll my eyes thinking, oh no... this game will last forever!! haha... We make our way into the living room and my parents read us the rules. It's a game about how much we know about our family. You know, like random facts, where people were born, who they worked for, favorite colors, stuff like that. I LOVE this whole idea and I am beyond excited! It's Wes and I against Amy and Eric and we get $1 for every correct answer. Brilliant!

Amy and Eric get $4 to start off with because Eric hasn't been around that long and so they thought it wasn't fair to them. whatever :)

The game goes on, it is so much fun, dad asks really good questions and then some ridiculous questions and then it ends with my team with $10 and Amy's with $13 (let's not forget their $4 head start).

After that there is a part 2. A treasure hunt with 5 clues leading up to a prize. If any of you know my father, who wrote the clues, he is kind of long winded... especially in writing. So clue after clue was prefaced with about 3 sentences of encouragement and big words before you actually made it to the actual clue.

It was an absolute blast and ended with a gift card to the movies (YES!) and my parents house being slightly destroyed due to my sister's aggressiveness. :)

I loved every minute of it. It was the best "forced family time" yet. We missed you Josh!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Getting defensive and getting Judah to sleep

My mom would always quickly rush to my brother's defense in almost every situation that she felt he was being criticized by me. In my immaturity I would usually throw out some comment like "he's your favorite" or "Josh doesn't ever do anything wrong" or ridiculous things like that. To be honest, I was mostly kidding, but there were a few hidden truths to those statements in my mind. Probably because I did plenty of things wrong and felt like I was in trouble more than not! oops! Sorry mom and dad! :)

But I'm entering into this whole new world of having 2 kids and it is bringing out all of these things in me that I didn't even know existed. Judah and Eli are completely different. Eli didn't mind his car seat, Judah hates it. Eli would fall asleep eating, Judah has to be put to sleep *more on that in a minute*. Eli had to have his diaper changed every 5 seconds it seemed like, Judah can handle much longer than that. Eli hated to be on his tummy, Judah almost exclusively sleeps on his. Eli was hardly ever burped and never spit up, Judah spits up all the time. The list truly can go on and on, but the biggest difference is that Eli did not cry much as a baby and Judah does.

Please hear me. Judah cries when he is tired, hungry, or needs to burp (which is frequent), but I know several friends who had babies that their crying almost seemed nonstop. I'm not trying to put myself in their category because I know their stress level in that area was much higher than mine and I don't want to make it seem like Judah never stops crying, but compared to Eli, he does cry much more.

With that said, Judah is darling. I'm getting all teary eyed just thinking about this. He is so strong, so advanced in so many areas, and completely beautiful. Babies cry. Judah cries. And when people make comments about Judah crying I get all defensive and it makes me want to scratch their eyes out. That's not a healthy response (the scratch their eyes out thing anyway) but I totally do get so defensive when it's brought up, especially in comparison to Eli. No one is meaning any harm by it. No one is judging my baby. They are just merely making an out loud observation. I get that. I do...on the surface anyway. But within me, I just want to scream that there is nothing wrong with him and babies cry!

That whole Mama Bear thing is for real y'all! And I need to reign that in a bit! :) So, just as some therapy for me, I am admitting that yes Judah does cry more than Eli did. Yes, it can be more stressful to be around than Eli was at this age. And knowing that I have no control over what people say (and being very aware that they are not meaning it in any kind of hurtful way) I just need to have better control over the reaction it brings out in me.

So I get it mom. Thanks for defending Josh when I was being a bratty sister. He deserves it. :)

As I mentioned earlier, Judah has to be put to sleep. We have a variety of things we go through and one of them will eventually work.

We do the walk about: which is just holding him in a cradle position and walk kind of fast all over the house never making eye contact with him. haha...

We do the rocking chair: which is trying every position possible while rocking and trying to get him from squirming out of our arms.

We do the basketball drills: which is putting him on his tummy and patting his back hundreds of times (literally) until he is finally dead asleep

And on many occasions we do all 3! Most of the time we just have to do one for a couple of minutes and then he is out. Easy breezy. Most of the time...

Well yesterday afternoon he was being all squirmy and rubbing his eyes and he was completely exhausted. I tried my gamete of tricks and nothing was working. I really didn't know what to do. My giant 3 month old is getting super heavy and I couldn't walk him around anymore, rocking wasn't working, bouncing him wasn't working so I just let him lay in his crib and cry. Gasp!

I walked out of the room, opened my computer, went to Dr. Sears' website (that I adore!)  , checked the clock, and started reading all of their articles on sleeping. I told myself I was going to let him cry for 5 minutes. My heart was racing. I hated every single second of those 5 minutes. I read the articles, calmed down, told myself he was fine, and let the 5 minutes pass.

After time was up, I went back in there, picked up my angel with a renewed sense of determination, walked around with him for like 1 minute and he was out. Whew!

I have no judgement towards parents that let their babies "cry it out" in bed. I just am not one of them. I think it might do more damage to my psyche than the baby's but I still just can't do it. Those 5 minutes were good for me to see that Judah was still fine (although upset) and that sometimes I might just need to refresh with a nice little article sometimes and then go back to parenting my baby to sleep.

And... I am almost positive he's teething. He chews on everything nonstop. He's drooling more than he is spitting up (is that even possible??) and I can see a little white speck at the front of his bottom gum. Why is he trying to grow up so fast? :)

I asked, and continue to ask, God to refine me. To teach me discipline. To give me patience. To learn to love like He does. I feel like He uses many moments with me trying to get Judah to sleep to do those things. I love that. I love that instead of using something else, I am being refined by such a sweet and fantastically wonderful baby.

And on a completely random note, does anyone know what plant this is? Sorry it's kind of fuzzy but I was driving by this house and took a picture. I felt like a huge creeper so I didn't get out of the car to take the pic but I really would love to know what this is. :)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

People get ready

Well, it's been over a month since I was last on here! Y'all, when Wes is gone it is so hard for me to get stuff done! And he's been gone a lot!

Ok, so people get ready. Here we go:

Today we're just trying out potty training with Eli. He's pretty much obsessed with potties but we've never really started anything with him about it. He is all about sitting on the potty (as of this posting he has been sitting there for about 18 minutes, and my son does not sit for anything!) and so we're making the most of it and seeing what happens!

I am fine with potty humor and stuff but constantly talking about pee pee and poo poo is already getting old. Uh oh. Today is only day 1! I've heard a million suggestions on how to make this all go down but honestly, who the heck knows! What works for one might not work for another! (hmm... he just got up and moved to Judah's bumbo seat... sigh...)

The most appealing advice to me was to just relax, not pressure him, and just take it as it comes. I can do that. It's Spring Break so we thought we might as well give it a shot!

Judah turned 3 months old this month! He is well into his 3-6 month clothes and I highly doubt he'll make it to 6 months in those clothes! He is so big y'all! I can't wait for his 4 month check up to see how much he has grown because it really seems like a lot!

We did experience the worst night of our entire lives last Wednesday. I don't think it was until Sunday evening that Wes and I finally got over it. I had been taking a nap with Judah on my bed. I woke up, left him in there (in the middle of course on his blanket) and went to play with Wes and Eli in the living room.

Every 10 minutes or so one of us goes and checks on Judah. Well we had heard him start to wake up and start talking a little bit so I got up to go get him. I walked in the door, the lights were off, it was dark, and then all of a sudden I hear the worst cry from Judah I had ever heard. I run over to the bed and he isn't there. He is laying on the floor screaming. Right as I walked in, Judah fell off of our very tall bed (at least 3 feet) and landed on our hard floor. I screamed and picked him up as fast as I could. Wes heard me, we flipped on the light, and saw 2 huge bumps on my sweet baby's head. One in front. One in back. He had hit his head twice. Sickening.

Wes called 911 and within a matter of minutes the ambulance was at our house and we were loading our 3 month old into his car seat and strapping him into the ambulance to go to the ER.

All the signs were good. He cried immediately. The bumps were hard and they were sticking out instead of not crying and his head being sunken in. They put ice on his head on the way to the hospital and he had calmed down. When we arrived, the bumps were almost completely gone and Judah was acting totally normal. The ER doctor said that he wouldn't have thought anything was wrong with him if we had just walked in from the street.

We learned many lessons that night. The most important being that our 3 month old rolls over. We put him on his tummy to sleep (it's pretty much the only way he will sleep) and he can scoot and roll now. Wes and I put him on him tummy and within a minute Judah flipped himself over.

I know God spared my eyes from actually seeing Judah fall from our bed. I don't think you can forget images like that and seeing him on the floor was bad enough. He is totally fine. Thank God he will not have to ever remember that, and Wes and I had upset stomachs for several days after that incident. Every once in awhile we would just look at him and start crying. Worst night ever.

Rachel got to come to town for a concert she was in and so we got to spend some time with her and Ellie! It was so much fun! It is kind of crazy how alike our kids are! From the way they say things, to their mannerisms, and their little attitudes they are so similar! We loved it!

And I also got to meet Ashley!! She came to town to visit her bestie and we all met up for breakfast! She is just as fantastic in person as she is on her blog and I loved it! She took a picture so when I get it it will be posted!

In other news, I'm still slowly losing weight, which is awesome. I'm getting back on my Chalean Extreme bandwagon this week since I fell off when Wes left. Look Like Heaven on Seven One Seven is still going!