Monday, February 27, 2006

Weight Loss

OK, I'm getting serious about it. The diet, that is. I have no excuses. I have plenty of time to exercise. Rachel loves being in her stroller. Maybe if I make a public admission here then I'll follow through with it instead of falling off the bandwagon!

First let me get this off my chest (no pun intended!)...I'll admit the thing I will miss most is regular Coke. Not the diet or the anything else variety. I feel as a Coke drinker I've almost had to be "in the closet" so to speak. People judge you when you drink regular Coke. When you go out to eat and everyone is sitting around a table ordering their water or Diet Coke and you say "Coke" they look at you like "uh, oh. You forgot to say 'diet'". When I assure them I did not forget, they scoot their chairs a little further from me and pull their children a little closer.

Maybe I'll start a "Regular Coke" drinker's movement. I'll have "Regular Coke pride" parades and "Regular Coke" bars. Maybe there will even be a TV show where they'll have a "regular coke" drinking neighbor. People will talk to me about my Coke lifestyle and debate weather it is genetic or a choice.

It isn't the caffeine I'm addicted to. I drink the caffeine free stuff at home becuase I'm breastfeeding. I like the taste. I am normally not a sweets eating person, but I love Coke. Combine Coke with a box of Better Cheddars (I'll substitute goldfish in a pinch), and I'm in HEAVEN!

It is impossible to diet and drink regular Coke, though. Well, unless that is ALL you consume, pretty much. And that's irresponsible eating. I can't stand aspartame, so no Diet Coke for me. I'll be drinking water, which is best anyway.

I need to lose about 20 pounds. Wish me luck!

*does anyone know how to make the text go along side the image on the top? If I upload a Flickr photo it does it for me but if I "steal" (shhhh!) one from google images I don't know the code to position it. Thanks"

Friday, February 24, 2006

My hot topic.

Generally I avoid hot topics on my blog, mostly because this is a place for me to have fun and an outlet. If I post something controversial and there's a huge disagreement and people get hurt and people say hurtful things then it isn't a stress reliever for sure. This blog is "Smiles and Laughter" for a reason.

I'm going to sidestep my rule for just one time. It's my blog, I can do that. :) There's a topic I am pretty passionate about. I am also curious what the thinking is of those opposed to it.

Adoption. I just DON'T understand why it isn't more of an option, especially when someone is young. There are SO MANY people out there looking to adopt babies. I'm talking waiting lists of 2 years or more. People on these lists are often times two parent households who are professionals, maybe not rich, but secure.

I think it is very selfish of someone who is young (I'm talking teenage here) and single not to give their child up for adoption. I think it is also selfish of single grandparents to raise the child because they couldn't bare to see the child "given away". People say they chose to keep the child like it is a badge of honor for not "abandoning" him or her. I say what better way is there to honor a child than to allow a secure, mature two parent family who want a child so badly to raise him or her?

I understand that anything could happen to the family once the child has been adopted. The adoptive parents could become single parents due to death or divorce. However, at least there's a CHANCE there. If the baby was kept by the teenage single parent then the baby has no chance at all of having the influence of two parents.

I'm not talking economics. Economically you can make due. Babies are pretty cheap, actually. If you HAVE to you can use cloth diapers, and breastfeeding is free. You can get an entire nursery at Wal-Mart for less than $100. I'm talking maturity and stability. And by "stability" I mean emotional. It is HARD to raise a child. DAMN hard. I never knew how hard it was until I had one. It takes TWO people to keep eachother sane. It takes a lot of maturity and clear thinking, something that the most mature teenager doesn't have, especially if they are alone.

I admire the maturity of teen women and men for that matter who have considered not their own needs or wants, but what BEST suits the needs of the child and put him or her up for adoption.

I'm done with my vent. Thanks. Back to your regularly scheduled program.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Be Careful What You Wish For!

Mommyhood. I'm forever excited about the next step. You know, when they first come home and sleep all the time you want them to wake up. Then they WON'T sleep (as I've whined about) and you want them to sleep more. I couldn't wait until Rachel crawled, but now that she knows how to go backwards she is getting into everything. Well, at least I just have to be careful what is behind her for now. When she figures out how to go forward, though, watch out. The dog is in trouble.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Girls go to Jupiter to get a lot Stupider

Esmerelda was dumb. She didn't realize she was dumb until it was too late. After all, in elementary school and high school she made good grades. Her IQ score was 130. That's genious level everyone told her.

But Esmerelda did dumb things despite what the records revealed. She should have known she was dumb since there were signs from when she was a wee one. I guess Esmerelda was in denial. When she was about 5 she and her sister both had to go potty. Her sister beat her to the potty then told Esmerelda that mommy wouldn't mind if she went in the tub. So she did. And mommy DID mind. But Esmerelda was dumb so she believed her sister.

When Esmerelda was about 12 she was invited to a slumber party. They were playing truth or dare, a staple at 12 year old girl's slumber parties. When she was picked she chose "truth". She was asked if she was a virgin. She said "No". Of course all of the girls eyes got very wide and you could have heard a pin drop. Then Esmerelda said "Doesn't that mean you were born in September?"

Poor Esmerelda continued to do stupid things all her life. At flashing red lights she thought you were supposed to go only when it showed red. It took 10 minutes to get through an intersection with all of that stopping and starting. She never knew why people were honking at her. She thought Cheerios were Alphabits that someone had taken all the "good" letters out of. She thought "peep show" meant a play starring the Easter candy, and the word "oxymoron" meant someone with below average intelligence who had to live in a bubble.

When Esmerelda graduated from college she had to find a job. She put in resume after resume and had interview after interview. No one would hire her. Finally, she applied to be a cashier at a discount store. After the interview the interviewing supervisor was thrilled. After all, they aspire to hire people who look good on paper but are really as dumb as a brick. "We might even put her in one of our commercials" they said.

So Esmerelda took that job. And she made stupid comments to the customers, and made them mad. But the customers knew that was a part of shopping at the discount store, so they didn't mind. And Esmerelda was happy. And the supervisors were happy. And everyone lived happily ever after.

Question (this is as two parter): Are there days when you feel like Esmerelda? Have you run into any "Esmereldas" lately?

Sunday, February 19, 2006

This is the Most Public of my Many Humiliations.

That quote, from Jackie Chiles, the Lawyer on Seinfeld, seems appropriate. Although I suppose it's probably not the most public. I've had far worse humiliations. But I also suppose it isn't the first time I will feel like an idiot when it comes to my kid.

We tried the sleep thing I mentioned below. It worked. In fact, it worked SO well, that the first night it took her 45 minutes to get to sleep, she woke up twice in the night and it took 45 minutes each time to get her to go back to sleep. That alone is a HUGE breakthrough. By the second night it took her 10 minutes to fall asleep and she woke up and fussed for 10 minutes once, but never cried so we didn't even have to go in there. Last night she fell asleep within 30 seconds and woke up in the night but never even fussed and fell back to sleep. Naps are great, too. She still wakes up at the 30 minute mark, as usual. But now she'll cry for maybe a minute then fall back to sleep. I feel like an idiot for fretting so much about this.

Now, in my defense, we DID try something very close to this method when she was about 4 months old, and it DID NOT work. My thinking is she just wasn't ready for it yet then. My assumption was if it didn't work then, it won't work now, and it will just traumatize the kid. Boy, was I wrong.

I think Weary Hag and my husband are right, I need to quit reading the books and do what I think is right. I fret to much.

Question: What is something you worried about, and it turned out to be nothing?

Monday, February 13, 2006


As most of you know we went to the much anticipated sleep clinic appointment last week. They basically told me what I expected.

They said she has problems "self soothing". Meaning she uses us as a crutch to get to sleep. This is nothing I didn't know. I knew this was the problem. After all, the first three months of her life before her surgery she was sick. When she was sick she needed cuddling and nurturing. Her grandparents were here, I was a SAHM, so she got the cuddling and the nurturing she needed to get herself through the experience. However, now that she is healthy she has decided she needs the cuddling and nurturing to get to sleep.

I have read many books including Baby Wise, The Baby Whisperer, and experts such as Jodi Mendell, Richard Ferber, T. Berry Brazleton, and William Sears. I have spent more time reading than anything else. I tried The Baby Whisperer method which suggests picking her up when she gets upset, but putting her back down immediately when she calms down. That absolutely did not work. I wasn't crazy about the Ferber method and didn't want to "Ferberize" Rachel. The Ferber method suggests letting her cry and leaving the room. The method says to go in for about 10 seconds after she has cried for 5 minutes, then immediately walking out and go in again for 10 seconds 10 minutes later, then walk out and go in 15 minutes later, and at 15 minute increments until she quits screaming and falls asleep on her own.

I have probably read way too much. Some experts say the Ferber Method is too traumatic. Other experts say this is the way to go. The people at the sleep clinic say it is the way to go.

They are the experts. Part of me thinks it is cruel, but part of me wonders if I am going to be one of those soft parents that protects their kid when they need to let them figure things out on their own. I mean, if I can't handle this and she is only 6 months old, when she is upset because she can't finish her math homework am I going to buckle and do it for her?

I do know one thing...her sleeping with us is NOT working, her waking up every 2 to 3 hours is NOT working either. It is effecting my dimeanor, and it isn't much good for the marriage.

If we do this, and we're leaning that way, we'll start it Thursday because Bryan is off on Friday and Saturday. Bryan and I will take turns going in. I am told the first two nights are living hell, then it gets better. I am told within a week we should be able to put her in her crib, kiss her goodnight, and she'll fall asleep on her own.

Of course, after this experience I'll probably be the one that needs medication.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Plea for Help

Tuesday is Valentines Day. Now, for all of you that forgot...that's your reminder.

I must admit in my relationship with my husband when it comes to such holidays as Valentines Day and Anniversaries and things like that I'm the husband and he's the wife. He's not going to like that I said that. So, I better qualify.

He loves to mark every occassion, make a big deal, celebrate, get me gifts, etc. That's what I mean that he's the wife. Because generally it's the wifey thing to do. I'm the husband because I'd rather just forget about it and not bother. I mean, Valentines seems like such a silly Holiday. We do special things for eachother all year, I make dinner for him, if he sees that I've had a particularly bad day he will do things for me and pamper me.

This year, though, he wanted to make Valentines special. I think mostly because we have a 6 month old that I'm at home with all day every day, who doesn't sleep (I'll talk about the sleep clinic in another post very soon), and we're in a new place where I have no friends. Come to think of it, I think he thinks I'm going insane. Anyway...

He got me a gift certificate to a spa. Something we really can't afford, but he wanted me to have it. It was so sweet of him. I appreciate it, and I really need a massage.

But now I need to find something to get him. Since he spent a ton on me we I can't reciprocate with the dollar amount because we can't afford it. So, I don't know what to do. I mean, I cook for him about every night...that's not a big deal. We don't have anyone in this town to babysit, so we can't go anywhere. Or do anything we can't do with a 6 month old in tow. I do have plans for after she goes to bed...and as much as I know THAT is proably all he wants anyway, I feel like I need to do something more than THAT.

Here is my plea for help. Any suggestions??

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Baby, it's cold!

We went out to eat last night, something we don't get to do much anymore. We went to a Tex-mex restaruant. Now, if you've never been to Texas, you've definitely never had good Tex-Mex, and probably not good Mexican food. I love it all.

Rachel is pretty good when we go out, so I wasn't too worried about her being a little fussy. We got to the restaurant and they had the traditional Tejano music playing and bright colored walls. Perfect to keep a 6 month old entertained.

Why restaruants think putting those carseat/carriers in an upside down high chair is a good idea, I'll never know. They aren't steady at all, and I would think would be a liability. But, they all do it. So, Rachel was in her car seat carrier in the upside down high chair. The thing was wobbly, so I was holding it with my knee. She was happily playing with Mr. Banana and watching the pretty lights and hustle and bustle around us.

Then the chair wiggles and looks like it is going to topple forward. So, instinctually I reach to stop it. Of course my instinct doesn't tell me I have a large glass of ice water in front of my hand at the time. Poor Rachel was showered with ice and water. Her eyes got really wide, then she let out a loud cry. Her outfit was soaked, and there was water sitting in the bottom of the carseat/carrier. I jumped up and frantically got her out fo the carseat. Of course, by the time I got her out she was smiling and giggling like she thought it was funny.

Question: What's something that seemed horrible at the time that you laughed about later??

Sunday, February 05, 2006

The Garage Sale

If someone talks you into having a garage Fast. Do not hesitate.

I went to my sister's house, 3 hours away, on Wednesday in preparation for a garage sale this last weekend. I had so much, well, "crap" that I needed to get rid of it was embarrassing, especially since we moved and I didn't have the apartment anymore. And I really needed the money. We took two truckloads of said "crap" to her house (I say "we" but I know I will get scolded for sister and her boyfriend took one and my parents took the other for me). So, it seemed like a good idea at the time. We've had them before but I forgot two very important things:

1. Mom was there to help us so we had 3+ people.
2. I didn't have an infant.

I went Wednesday thinking I could price stuff Wednesday night and Thursday. I didn't take into account that Rachel would be sleeping in a strange place and for a kid that doesn't sleep much anyway this would put her back past any accomplishments we made as far as sleeping went. I put her down to sleep Wednesday night, she fell right to sleep, and in her usual 30 minutes she woke up with the bloodcurlding scream. Except she figured out that once she falls asleep mommy leaves the room and she was in a strange place, so she wouldn't go back to sleep for anything. Then of course Thursday she was a grumpy gus because she was tired. I got little done to prepare.

My sister, in her infinite wisdom, thought having the sale at 7 a.m. was a good idea. Me, knowing the idea wasn't her best, should have been more adamant about having it at 8 a.m. Especially considering I was sleeping in the same room as Rachel and if I get up, she was surely to get up. But, I didn't. So, we had to get up before light to get the crap out on the front lawn, and Rachel of course having the superpowers even in a completely asleep state to detect when I was leaving the room woke up also. Well, at least my daughter is showing talent at something.

Of course first thing Friday morning, no not at 7 a.m. but 6:30 a.m., the die-hard garage sale people came. You know, the ones that if they see a coffee pot for 50 cents they'll run over their own Aunt Edna and trample puppies to get to before anyone else.

Speaking of which, I am amazed at what people will buy. Our motto was "Put it out there, ya never know" and I think every thing that we said that about went. Curtains with a stain on them, cheap particle board furniture that had paint dripped on it, a can of oven cleaner. Even the 1973 hat decorated with yellow flowers and orange ribbon went for a few cents. Not that ALL of our stuff was that bad. I must say, we did get rid of some good crap.

All in all I'd say it was a success. I made about $400, and my sister made close to that much. And we really had nothing big, it was $400 of, well, crap.

p.s. We go to the sleep clinic tomorrow!

Question: What's something you tried that you'll never do again?