Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mama guilt

If I get home and get some pictures taken while it's light out I'll be back soon with pictures of Bob (our elf), our new advent calendars, and our new wreaths! We got our tree this weekend too.  Stella had a great time decorating it (I'm refraining from "fixing" it though it looks like someone chucked mardi gras beads at it).
 I love this one of Jim and Stella!

For today however...

I tend to be a BIG worrier, and I think I carry a lot of guilt.  Not two of my better qualities, but we all have our things right?  One of the biggest causes of guilt for me is Mama guilt.  I feel bad I don't spend all day everyday with them (even though Stella was sobbing Sunday when I mentioned we may have to stay home Monday if her fever didn't break.  She said she missed her friends - love that!), I feel guilty we don't have more fresh homemade meals, homemade quilts/clothes/accessories, etc.  The most recent cause for my guilt is Lucy weaning.  Stella and I only made it for about 2 1/2 months before she weaned when I went back to work.  I REALLY wanted to nurse Lu for longer and was thrilled that I'd be home with her for 5 months before returning to work.  I also planned on pumping while at work this time around and let me tell you how much fun THAT was!  My goal was to nurse until she was 6 months old.  I always said when she's old enough to walk up to me and ask for it or pull my shirt up I was DONE.  Each person has their own views on breastfeeding and/or comfort levels, and that's been where I start to get uncomfortable with it.

Lucy was 8 months old yesterday and over the past week or so she's been less and less interested in nursing and I was getting less when I pumped.  I was down to once a day at school (that meant I got my lunchtime back) and nursing once or twice a day.  Yesterday I forgot the bottles so I didn't pump and then I didn't bring them today.  Now, I'd MUCH MUCH MUCH prefer her to wean herself when she's ready so we don't have to go through the trauma and misery of me denying her and I made it past my 6 month goal.  She'd much prefer real food to bottles and there's no doubt she's growing just fine, so it's crazy for me to feel bad about it, but I do. 

I know it's nothing to feel guilty over, perhaps it's not as much guilt as sadness that it's coming to an end and that means she's getting older and more independent.  I'm such a sap!  When she sprouts that first tooth I'm going to lose it - those gummy grins are one of my favorite things!

I haven't even touched on my irrational and totally excessive worrying and anxiety, I've been told more than once that I need medication! Do any of you have irrational guilt?  What things set you off?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

A finished hat!

I finished a new hat for Jim last week but it's wool so he's decided it's too itchy for his bald head. :( Anyone know of a guy with hair that would like a new wool hat???

I finished one for Lu tonight that seems to be a bit more successful though she's not a fan of wearing hats. I used some Berroco Flicker that I won in a blog giveaway. I LOVE it! It's soft, a little sparkly, and I still have enough for a hat for me - yay! I had to add just a bit of pink so people can tell she's a girl (which still doesn't always clue people in...)

The addition of the brim is what makes this hat in my opinion. It was a great fast easy knit that I highly recommend. Now I can start on Stella's sweater, a hat for me, or a new hat for Jim... I think Jim's going to be last in line. ;)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Crafty crafterson...

I've been getting my craft on (and loving it) the past two weeks. I've also been on the hunt for the PERFECT advent calendar for the past two years.

Last year Stella and I made a paper forest. While it was cute, it wasn't very functional since not much fit under the trees and I didn't consider how I'd store them when I decided to make it.

Here they are if the link works when posting from my phone.

I've been scouring Pinterest for months now trying to decide what to do next. Halfway through and I'm seeing a LOT of potential for things going wrong... I think I should have stuck to one color of ribbon and it looks like its going to be a measuring nightmare for my anal self! What I really want to do is to knit one but I wouldn't be able to fit much in that either... If this doesn't work I'm definite going to try a knit one next year though!

Wish me luck!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Helping an almost four year old wait

I am NOT a patient person.  When I decided I want my haircut, I want it that day.  If I want to do a craft I want to do it now.  I'm sure Stella has gotten a bit of that from me.  In addition, she's not quite four.  Waiting for anything is pure torture when you're that age.  When we have something fun planned we don't usually tell her until a day or so before just because we know how hard it will be.

She is also a little decorating diva, she loves to help me decorate the house and her room (she always says, "let's step back and see how it looks").  All of this to say she is DYING to start decorating for Christmas!  We've been working on a few new things and she wants to put them up so badly she can't stand herself.  I feel like I'm always trying to help her with time by saying, "today is this, tomorrow this" etc until we get to the event we're looking forward to.

I decided to make her a little daily countdown.  She can't read so I needed a way to help her distinguish between the different days.  This is what I came up with:
I put a clipart picture of something happening each day that I could think of to help her visualize (gym, going to Haley's 1st soccer game, Thanksgiving) until finally we get to the last day with the elf representing Bob, our Elf on the Shelf, and the tree.  The day after Thanksgiving we get to go cut down our tree and decorate the house.  She's getting into it and looks forward to crossing of each box at the end of the day.  If I'm honest I'm probably more impatient than she is!

I've also been planned out our advent calendar for this year.  I didn't want to spend as much on them as last year.  Buying things for 24 days adds up even if you're trying to be careful.  I tried to plan some activities and I hit up the $1 section at Target to fill in gaps.  Some of the days may change of course, but I'm hoping to make it a bit easier on myself this year to have the days set ahead of time.  I'm making them each new calendars this year and it needs to have all of the presents ready from the beginning so I'm glad it's done.  Now I just need to finish them up so I can post some pictures!

*Edited to add MORE activity ideas, I can't believe I forgot some of these!!!

~Zoo lights
~make glitter ornaments
~letter to Santa
~sign Stella up for video from Santa
~make magic reindeer food
~pipe cleaner candy canes
~cottonball snow(wo)man
~handprint wreath (fun!)
~paper plate/cottonball santa

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

My stint as a single Mama will come to an end tonight and I'm SO stinking excited to have Jim home!  Though we missed him desperately, we did manage to do ok on our own (though I didn't get a single fire and I missed them).  I just have to get through conferences tonight - YUCK, as my neighbor teacher said, the worst night of the year! :(

Lula bug is now waving "bye bye" to me when I leave in the morning and even almost says something that sounds like "bu bu".  She also says, "mamamamamama" which I wasn't going to count as mama, but she definitely says it when she's upset/waking up and it's recognizable to others, so I just may claim it as her first word! Even though it's a sad little whimper, I think it's one of the cutest things I've heard in my entire life!

I finally got around to writing down an interview that Stella and I had during our tea party the week before school started.  I look forward to doing these each year and eventually making a book out of them.