Thursday, December 28, 2006

Ah, We Survived It All

It feels like it's been so long since I've posted. A lot has happened.

The day after I posted, I went with Twinkle's class to "Santa Claus is Coming to Town". The best part was when Santa, his sleigh and the reindeer ended the show by going around the middle aisle of the theatre right next to us and fake snow fell from the ceiling. The worst part was when one of Twinkle's classmates puked two rows in front of us right before the show started. Yikes.

The day after that, we went on our cruise to Cozumel with the in-laws. It was quite relaxing. It was also typical of time with the in-laws. Hubby asked his mother what her expectations were before we left. We had a fear that they would be very high and include spending time with them 24/7. She had 2 expectations: 1) seeing us at dinner every night, and 2) not babysitting either of the grandchildren. Hey - fine with me. So, when we saw her the first night at dinner, she was already babysitting hubby's 7 year old nephew. If I start thinking about it, it will drive me nuts. Suffice it to say, I don't know how hubby's 41 year old sister is still alive. Wait, yes I do. If she had to keep herself alive, she probably wouldn't be, but she's never gotten the chance. It's really 2 sided. She truly has never had the chance to fail. Literally. Even in college when she got 54 hours of F's, her parents continued to pay for her schooling (at a private school, no less). Fast forward to the present and hubby's mom is complaining about ..... fill in the blank.... but she really has a lot to do with the problem in the first place.

OK, I spent way too much time on that. The trip really was relaxing and Twinkle had a blast. Bottom line - a success.

We got back in time to finish shopping for Christmas. We had a great holiday. Santa came through for Twinkle. It was a "Dora Talking Christmas". We had a great time with my family and hubby's. It was wonderful to get to spend so much time with family.

Since then, we've done nothing. Twinkle and I have actually been playing video games for large parts of the last two days. Man, there's nothing like the holidays for sitting and doing the things you never get to do. Ahhh.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Two Days and Counting

Twinkle's Christmas luncheon ("it's a luncheon mom, not a party") was today. It was my turn to help with a luncheon. It was a lot of fun. The kids all stuffed themselves with relatively healthy food. They also had a book exchange. Out of 13 kids, I think there were 3 or 4 copies of "Polar Express" in the mix.

It's 2 days until we go on our cruise with the in-laws. Twinkle's class has a field trip tomorrow to see "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town", so hopefully there won't be much opportunity for her brain to go somewhere it isn't supposed to.

I'm a little stressed about needing to pack and do all kinds of things before Saturday. I thought hubby and I were going to do something trip related tonight, but he just called to see if I wanted to go to a hockey game tonight. I'd already told him that I was skipping at Christmas party with a group at church because I just don't want to add to the other bazillion things I have to do this week. So he asked why I didn't want to go to the hockey game - uh, same reason. It's not a matter of whether it's fun, it's just adding one more thing. He just doesn't get it.

Whatever. So, should I just ignore everything that needs to be done and not sweat it? Oh, it's Saturday morning and there's nothing packed? Hm, How about that?! What do you know?

Right now is the time of day I start feeling a bit sleepy and done quite honestly. I've been busy all day, now Twinkle is home and coloring and I just need to chill. I don't know what he and I would actually do that is trip related this evening, I guess it's just at the end of the day, after everything else, I just need to chill and thought I'd be chilling with him.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Twinkle, Twinkle

When I picked up Twinkle from school today, her teacher asked me to have a chat with Twinkle about focusing on her work and listening. Oy. Like she'll listen to ME.

So, I asked Twinkle what was up with not listening in class. She, of course, said she didn't know. I told her to ask her brain why it couldn't listen in class. So, she paused, asked her brain and paused again.

Then she said that her brain wasn't where it was supposed to be when she was in class. I asked her where her brain was. She said that it was supposed to be in the middle, but during class it was over on the right. I asked her why her brain was on the right and what it was doing there. She asked her brain, then said that it went over to the right because it wanted to watch TV, have something to drink and eat a sandwich.


This evening, I asked Twinkle what she thought we could do to keep her brain in the middle during class. She suggested "brain medicine" that "tastes really icky". I suggested maybe we could remind her brain every morning that while she's in class, her brain has to stay in the middle. She thought this was a good idea.

I guess it's time for a Christmas break.

Monday, December 11, 2006

We Survived the Play

Well, the last performance of Twinkle's play (for Twinkle) was last night. I actually skipped it. There were 3 moms there to cue the kids and our church was having a tea that I look forward to every year. Hubby convinced me that since I'd been there Friday and Saturday nights, I didn't need to be there Sunday.

I had a great time at the tea, then I went to the theatre in time for the bowing. Afterward, we went to dinner. It was very nice.

This morning, I had a full on training session with my trainer. OH. MY. GOD. I thought I was going to die. We only worked on legs. Who knew my legs were so weak. I use them every day!The very first contraption was a squat machine. I actually had thoughts of "I'm going to be stuck here". I knew that Debbie was there and I wasn't going to die or get stuck, but I couldn't help the thoughts bopping around. It was HARD. And was followed by 25 more minutes of various leg muscle work. Yikes. Aside from the tiredness of my legs, my heart rate was up as well. I decided that I was not going to make it to the treadmill after all that work. It's so worth it and I know for darn sure I would not have worked that hard if I'd been trying to do it alone.

I made it home despite my legs being replaced by Jello. After relaxing a little bit, I went upstairs to change and thought "wow, climbing stairs is an interesting experience with Jello legs". Little did I know how "interesting" it would be coming back down the stairs. I felt like I had no control over my legs. The muscles weren't doing what I thought they would do. They kind of jerked a little forward on my way down the stairs. It was quite a bizarre feeling.

After scarfing down some lunch, I went on a mission for Twinkle's Santa gifts. I won't even go into it except to say that I was successful...eventually. I love Santa shopping. I can't wait to see her face on Christmas morning.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

I'm Feeling Much Better Now

It's Saturday night. I didn't think I'd be so perky at this point.

Twinkle's play has gone great. Only one more performance to go. Last night and tonight, I got to be the mom that stands outside of the room the kids are in, watching the play and following the script to cue the kids when to go out. This is much better than being the mom who's inside the room with the kids trying to keep them quiet and occupied when they aren't on stage. I'm very thankful for being able to be the cue-er. Find your talent, and stick with it!

I was a little freaked out (not to mention annoyed) when I got to the theatre tonight, though. I was the only mom of the 12 kids in the room that was staying to help. Hmmm, how do I stand outside the room following the script AND be inside the room keeping the kids quiet? Luckily, one of the moms who goes where she's needed wandered by and I said something about being alone and she instantly said she'd stay as long I could cue them. What a Godsend. She was better than I will ever be at keeping the kids quiet and busy. Oh, it was wonderful! If I can just manage to be the cue-er tomorrow night, I'll may come through this whole thing with all of my hair still attached.

Last night, my parents came up (3 hour drive) to see Twinkle (and hubby) perform. Hubby's parents were also supposed to be here. But.... I won't get into it. OK, maybe I will. They called around 3 and said they didn't think they could make it because they had x, y & z to do. Blah, blah, blah.... Honestly, it did make it easier on me not having both sets of grandparents here at the same time. What bugs me is the time hubby's parents carve out of their lives for hubby's nephew. It's just getting ridiculous how much favoritism they show. They've driven the 3 hours to see him in the middle of the day, middle of the week; taken off work, etc. etc. Driven up and back in the same day... Ugh! Anyway, luckily Twinkle has not seemed to notice this yet. I figure she will one day. I'll figure out what to tell her then.

Next stressor... going on a cruise next week (yeah, I know...) with the above mentioned hubby's parents, sister and favored nephew/grandson.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

What WAS I Thinking?!

So, Twinkle and I just got home from play rehearsal. I'm just about done. This isn't fun. I'm not a stage mother.

How can I get so angry at my beautiful, darling? She's only 5 1/2. I love her so. I just get so angry when she doesn't listen. It's the kind of not listening that makes you want to knock your head against a wall. Am I expecting too much? I don't think so. I mean it's simple listening like, "please be quiet"..."stopping talking"..."we cannot talk while we're in here" and she JUST DOESN'T STOP.

Good Lord, is it me?

I told her earlier in the day that if she didn't listen better tonight at rehearsal and didn't behave better that we were not going back and she wasn't going to be in the play. Now I can' t decide if she was better, or not. You know, she may have listened one time more than she did last night, but I was still just tearing my hair out the whole time. I don't think I was really all that tired and cranky. I did get a little nap after lunch, so I didn't spend the rest of the day feeling tired. Now, I feel like one of those squishy heads that you squeeze to relieve stress and it makes the eyes and everything pop out.

All of this leads me to wonder, what was I thinking when we decided to add another child to our family? If one child makes me feel this way, what happens when there are 2 of them? That makes me really sad to think about. I truly want another child. But I don't want to feel this way and scar 2 children for life. I don't want to be an angry mother. I know that Twinkle sees more than anger from me. It really is just this whole play experience that's pushing me over the edge. I know that on any given day I'm not like this. Lately it seems like I'm always a little tense, though. I really hate it. I feel so overwhelmed.

So Tired...

How do you do it?

As I've mentioned, Twinkle is in a play. Every night this week we have to be at the theatre until 8. I'm now a "stage mother". There are 4 or 5 4-6 year olds that have to be corralled and cued throughout the play, well as a group of slightly older girls that are better behaved. Oy. It's a bit difficult to keep up with what's going on on stage and keep the kids quiet in the room at the back of the theatre. We moms are still trying to learn the cues. I guess once we're confident with that, it will be a bit easier. With more than one mom at the back, it may be easier for one to keep them quiet and one to cue them.

Yesterday, I was really busy in the afternoon. Further to the "stage mother" role, apparently I'm also a stage mother for hubby. He needed his potato sack of a costume decorated a little bit, as well as an empty box wrapped like a present. Twinkle needed lights attached to her star and also needed a wrapped box. I am officially a mother now. I have purchased, for the first time, a hot glue gun. I probably haven't used a hot glue gun since college - back when it blistered your skin if you accidentally touched the glue before it had cooled. They are much better now. I can hot glue like a mad woman. It looks like I need to re-glue Twinkle's lights onto her star. Maybe I'm not the hot glue queen I felt like I was yesterday.

After the busy afternoon, I was already feeling exhausted when we got to the theatre last night. Then, after working to keep the kids quiet I was ready to collapse when Twinkle and I got home last night.

The upshot of all of this is that Twinkle is having no problems sleeping straight through the night without waking us. That, of course, means that WE are sleeping straight through the night without waking. Today, though I do feel like I could have slept a bit more last night. It's Wednesday, I just have to make it through the end of the play on Sunday afternoon, and this will all be over.

I don't think we're going to do another production like this until Twinkle is 7 or 8.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006

What a Crazy Week

If I can make it through this week without screaming, I'll be ready for next week.

This week Twinkle and hubby are in a performance at a local community theatre. The performances are Friday, Saturday and Sunday. That means there are rehearsals every night this week. Luckily the little ones like Twinkle are supposed to leave by 8 every night. Last night, they were actually finished around 7:30. That could make for a cranky Twinkle by the weekend. She did, however, spend the entire night in her bed last night, so maybe that will continue if she's so tired when she goes to bed every night.

I started working with a personal trainer at the gym yesterday. I'll meet with her again on Thursday. I'm really looking forward to this new take on exercise. I have someone holding me accountable AND telling me how to do things correctly. Hopefully, this will be the beginning of new habits that I can stick with.

We shall see...

Thursday, November 30, 2006

It's a Good Day

It's been a good day. Twinkle slept all night, so that helped I'm sure.

I met with a trainer at the gym today for my "complimentary" session for joining the gym. Even though I went in to it knowing the purpose was for them to try to convince me to sign up for a trainer, I signed up for a trainer. I'm excited. I'm paying this money and I'm determined to stick to it. I'll start out meeting 2 times a week and probably eventually change to once a week. We'll see.

I'm ready to try this. It's not like I'm trying some quick scheme and putting my faith in a pill or something. I mean, if I do it regularly, I can only get healthier, right?

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Brain, Brain, What is Brain?

I'm not actually a Star Trek geek, I'm married to one. Maybe that makes me one by default. He's not a "dress up like Spock and go to conventions" geek, but he can pretty much say the lines in all of the shows along with the actors.

But I digress...

Today, tonight especially, the swizzle stick is a-swirling. I was talking to a woman today whose daugther is in a drama class with Twinkle. I was telling her about having a jewelry show this coming weekend and a few other things, and she said that she remembered me mentioning that a couple of weeks ago. How do people remember things like that? I forget what I'm saying in the middle of a sentence! I couldn't tell you how many times this week alone I've just stopped to try to think of a word like "newsflash" or forgotten why I'm telling someone whatever it is that's coming out of my mouth. I couldn't tell you because I can't remember.

Jeezy, creezy, It's so frustrating. I wish I could look inside my brain and see what synapses are napping. I wish I could figure out what exactly I need to do to get everything firing. More sleep? Better de-stressing ability? More protein? More chocolate? More? Less? Prayer? Mediation? Medication? Yoga? 10 minutes of screaming every day? Silence?

My family deserves better. I deserve better.

Sleep? I don't need no stinking sleep!

OK, that makes it sound worse than it is. Twinkle woke up again last night. Again at 2:30. This time she did not come into our room and want to sleep in our bed. This time she just sat in the doorway to her room and cried until I woke up.

She didn't say she'd had a bad dream. She only said that she didn't want to be in her room by herself. She had gotten up and restarted the John Lennon disc in her CD player, so I guess she gave it a try before the howling started.

I put her back into her bed and sat down beside her while she drifted off. At least I thought she'd drifted off. When I got up to leave and opened her squeaky door (note to self, go get the WD-40) she woke up. Luckily, I told her to go back to sleep and she said OK. Even luckier, she didn't wake up again the rest of the night AND I managed to go back to sleep pretty quickly.

No one told me that at 5 1/2, I'd be getting up for 2:30 "feedings" again like when she was a baby. And truthfully, those didn't last very long. She started sleeping through the night when she was about 2 months. At that time, her pediatrician told me that until Twinkle weighed 10 lbs, I needed to wake her up and feed her in the middle of the night. Uh, yeah right. I think the technical term for that is "Crazy".

So, growth spurt? School stress? What is this phase that she seems to go through every few months where she wakes up in the middle of the night? I know it will end, but I'd rather it be sooner than later.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Another Day

It's a good day... Sort of.

I did go to the gym today, and it did help me feel more together. However, Twinkle decided at 2:30 am that she wanted to sleep in our bed. This usually results in my not sleeping, so I typically try to discourage it. Hubby meanwhile snores away.

So, Twinkle comes in, wakes me up (will she ever learn?) and says she wants to sleep with me. I say no, she has to sleep in her bed. Begging and pleading follow, I say no, but honestly, I don't want to force the issue by picking her up and physically taking her back to her bed. So, Twinkle crawls into my bed. I do my best to keep my space and go back to sleep. About 45 minutes later, neither of us has slept and she decides maybe she'll go back to her own bed. Hurray.

3:40 am - From across the house "mom? Mo-om? Moooooooom? MOM!" Rumble rumble, not that I've actually fallen asleep in the 15 minutes she's been gone. I go to her room where she tells me she can't sleep. I did have some sympathy for her because I know what it's like to not be able to sleep! I turn on some music for her and go back to bed.

3:50 am - What is that sound? That sound isn't right. That's just off. What is it? It's Twinkle crying. I go to her room. T: "I had a bad dream"; Me: "No you didn't. You haven't slept in 1 1/2 hours."; T: "I want you to sleep with me because I'm crying"; Me: "Why are you crying?"; T: "I don't know"; Me: "Then stop it". I put two books into her bed (which were on the floor beside her bed and she could have easily gotten) and tell her not to get me out of bed again. Then I return to bed.

I think I fell asleep around 4:30. What did it was deciding that I should at least lie there and relax even if I couldn't sleep. Go figure.

So today I'm a wee bit cranky. I like sleep. Sleep is a very important part of my night. I can't help but be a little snippy when I'm awakened and it isn't for an actual bad dream or something equally major. I didn't rant and yell, but I feel like I should have been nicer. Hubby would probably say that I was nice - y'know, if he had been awake. He knows how I don't like my sleep interrupted. When will the girl learn that?

Monday, November 27, 2006

What Color is Your Swizzle Stick?

Do you ever feel like someone has put a swizzle stick into the top of your head and just stirred things around a little?

Sometimes I just have trouble thinking straight, or remembering things, or getting my brain around all the things that I have to do. When my brain feels this way, it puts me near tears. I really used to be an organized, thinking person. Where is that person now?

For one thing, I think I need more rest. That seems like an easy answer, and certainly seems easier than, say, more exercise. But a couple of weeks ago, I actually went to bed at 8:30! I felt great the next day. I can't remember being in such a good mood.

Another thing that helps sometimes is taking the time to make lists. It's as if by writing something down, I'm giving myself permission to not keep it in my brain. Then there isn't as much swirling around to be disturbed by the swizzle stick. What concerns me at times is that sometimes the lists have to be very detailed, but that's really just when there's just so much going on or involved in a particular task.

Also, I know that exercise does indeed help. After being told that by my doctor, and Oprah, and every other media outlet, I can finally say that they are correct. I've started going to the gym regularly for the past few weeks (I know, not long term yet) and I have noticed a difference in my attitude on the days that I go.

And yet, despite knowing all of those things, the top of my head feels like it has a swizzle stick in it today.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Who Are These People?

...And why are they in my house?!

I decided to start this blog, because sometimes I just need to talk. There may be no one listening, but at least the "not listening" isn't "to my face".

I just go through phases of feeling up or down or sideways, and I need to get it out.

Let me start by saying that I love my family. I have a husband of almost 18 years and a 5 year old daughter I'll call Twinkle. We are in the process of adding another child to our family through international adoption. I have another blog chronicling that odyssey, but I'd like to keep that separate from this.

We are ending 9 days of Twinkle being home from school, and hubby being off work and I'm ready for them to go back.

You'll never believe what hubby had the audacity to do...laundry!! How dare he?! Now, how is this something that I could possibly be annoyed about? He's been doing it for the past few days - that's how much was piled up - and I guess I'm not annoyed now. But I was - how is that possible? He didn't "do it right"...separating reds from blues from browns; dumping the clean clothes in the bedroom floor to be put away later...oh the humanity. I guess I just felt like he was coming into my domain and taking over because I wasn't doing a good job at it. Sure, there was a lot of dirty laundry waiting to be done. Sure, that could lead many to believe that I wasn't doing a good job of keeping up with it. I might even admit that I'd been lazy and had not done laundry the way it ought to be done. Why is my first response to get annoyed that he was helping me out? Why not just take the help?

Whenever something like this happens, I always swear to myself that I'll try to do a better job so that laundry, for example, doesn't pile up like this again. But then life comes along.