April 21, 2011

Fix it?

I like the international breastfeeding symbol. I like seeing it places and knowing that I'm welcome. I like it's simplicity. The one thing that I don't like is that it's only one option. When I had one nursing kid, it fit us. But I have two nurslings. And I've never seen it with more than one child. So, I worked my photoshop skills and fixed it so it does fit my family. I have to give credit to the artist who originally designed it though too. I hope he doesn't mind my tweeking it.

April 20, 2011

Have washable kids?

For starters, that's just how kids come. It's other things that get in the way of them realizing their full washability.

Sometimes I forget that they're washable. That doesn't really do much for them knowing they're washable either. I forget that their life experience has waaayyyy more value than their stainfree clothing. I just simply forget that dirt is good for them. I've been reminded this week. Or at least, making steps that way. More steps to make it a bit more consistent, but we're in the right direction and have plenty of time and opportunity to keep going that way.

We planted herb and veggie seeds on the picnic table before dinner yesterday. A little dirt, but not much. It doesn't really take much to plant tomatos, basil and carrots in little pots before they get transplanted into larger pots. We've got more seeds that need to be planted and a couple more I still need/want to get.

Today, we went and played in the tulip fields. It's a fairly commercial place, but the kids ran in the dirt, got muddy and loved every moment of it which made up for the fact that I knew it was pretty commercial. We bought some gladiola bulbs while we were there to plant this week at home too. It'll be a lovely way to remember the day in the tulip fields come August and the tulips are long gone. We also got some awesome pictures!

<--- Spunky

Yup, they're washable all right! And, the bonus good news is that their clothes are washable too! But, a bit of dirt is completely worth them loving outside and being comfortable exploring it!

April 19, 2011

Raise her?

We're not done with Sparky by any means, but man alive that kid impresses me sometimes!

I've got a kid who knows how to be respectful (most of the time), is lovingly engaged with her sister, and understands most boundaries that we've explained to her. Oh yeah, did I mention she's 3?

We've recently redistributed the play things in our home. As in, over 1/2 of them went away. It's generally not been a problem but we've had a couple stuffed critters sneak their way back somehow. Anyway, today we had a minor issue with those so they went back away and both kids had their birthday babies as the only soft toys. They each know which is theirs. Sparky was being a bit greedy with them off and on all day and after dinner it was just enough-is-enough.

She was told that she couldn't play them with them anymore today and to play with other things. It was only about 10 minutes before she was to start getting ready for bed anyway, so not a huge deal, but there's consequences to problematic behaviors.

Fast forward 2 minutes. Hubs and I were finishing dinner at the dining table while the kids played in the other half of the room. Spunky must have offered Sparky one of the birthday babies that she'd been told she couldn't play with. We hear: "No thank you. The babies are gone for me now today. You can play with those but I can't."

I just about told her it was fine and to go ahead! I was so proud of her for having the maturity to understand that even though she could have gotten away with playing with something she wasn't supposed to, she instead accepted her consequences. She was even polite in telling her sister about it.

I called Sparky right over and told her thank you and gave her a hug and let her know I was proud of her. She beamed and was proud of herself too! She's an awesome kid. Just love her, love her, love her!

April 15, 2011

Join the party?

The Peaceful Housewife

So here's where my mind is: I don't want to be obligated to write on my blog, but I do enjoy the community of my real life friends blogging and have some thoughts about parenting (who could have guessed that!) so I'm going to semi-join up for the natural parenting blog party! Here's post 1. There may be more through the rest of the month. It'll just be as my mood strikes.
  1. How many children do you have, and how old are they? I'm lucky enough that I have two kids that I can hold and touch, ages 3 and 1. I also have at least two others that I'm looking forward to meeting when I die who would be ages 4 and close to 2.
  2. Do you have a partner, or are you a single parent? Well that's a loaded question! I'm very blessed to have a partner and also be married to him.
  3. What are your “hot button” parenting issues? I'm not all the way sure that I have them. Talk to me and I'll know. Oh, wait. I'm going bonkers that my nearly 10 month old nephew doesn't have a name. It just feels disrespectful to him at this point. I'm not a fan of kids being disrespected.
  4. Have you made any parenting choices that you didn’t think you would make before you were a parent, i.e. cloth diapering a child when you had previously thought it was disgusting? Um... yes! We cloth diaper when I never thought I would. We co-sleep and didn't plan on that. I also have a nursing 3 year old and really didn't plan on that. Didn't plan on nursing a 3 year old and a 1 year old either, but here we are! There's absolutely other stuff too. I've always said I would never be a teacher, but we're on the road to homeschooling.
  5. Is there one book or person in particular that’s heavily influenced your parenting choices? Yes, Sparky, my first born, changed up much of what I thought about parenting. Spunky, my youngest, also changed things up all over the place since she's very different from Sparky.
  6. If you had to describe each of your children using only one word, what word would you use? Oh, I get to cheat a little bit! Sparky is effervescent. Spunky is joy.
  7. Is there one parenting decision that you regret more than others and wish you could change? I'm not sure that there is actually. I've made some mistakes probably but have learned from them and am a better parent because of my mistakes. I'd rather make the mistakes while they're so young that they don't remember than screw it up all over the place when they're more prone to hold it against me. And I don't believe that the early experiences don't affect kids. They do.
  8. Is there an area of your parenting you wish you were better at? Mindreading.
  9. Now for the fun questions – is there one particular food or type of food that you could eat every day? Popcorn. Hands down.
  10. Vanilla ice cream or chocolate? Vanilla with caramel sauce please.
  11. What’s your guilty pleasure? See above. :)
  12. If you could be part of any television show, which show would it be? Maybe Amazing Race, but maybe not. They often have to eat meat stuffs which I don't do. But it would be fun and interesting to travel and see what's going on with the world.


Still working on it a little bit and finding the right balance, but I jump on the facebook bandwagon a little over a month ago.

There's a whole lot of random crap people have to say out there! Oh my goodness! There's also some really great things people have to say! In the past month+, I've started reconnecting with my two best friends from childhood, gotten to see different sides of family members and gotten to know them better than the once a year family party, and peeked into my friend's lives. That sounds a little creepy, but I don't mean it in the creepy way. I've also at least semi-started to reconnect with friends from college, high school, past jobs, and really, every time of my life I guess.

There's a bit of me that's very excited about this. Some of these people were the most important to me at the time. We were friends for reasons. The flip side of that is that we also lost touch for reasons probably. But, I also know I'm a different person than I was a year ago let alone 5, 10 or 20 years ago.

My childhood friends are super exciting to me. I don't want to be overwhelming and obnoxious (well, no more than I actually am) and jump and hug and brain vomit all over them, but in reality, that's what I want to do. The three of us have kids similar aged-ish and I would love for my kids to form friendships with their kids and have that continuity. THAT would be super cool to me. Good people raising awesome kids together. Yeah, I'm all about that!

It's been a long time since I've talked to these women, but I know their base character is wonderful. Now it's the little dance of, "hey, wanna be my friend?" Not just a facebook "friend" because we all know what that actually means at this point, but an actual, "I know you, like you anyway and enjoy spending time with you" friendship. But I'm nervous about it. I don't know or remember why we lost touch. I was probably pretty preoccupied by a certain boy (reconnected with him too kinda) and probably just trying to figure out who I was and how I wanted the world to see me. Well, that didn't work quite right I guess. But, it's now been a long time, I know who I am and... the world stil doesn't see me as I see me most of the time, but oh well. I don't care the same way I used to. Again, the maturity of my 30's.

I kinda want to just have a big backyard BBQ and invite everyone over and love all over them but that doesn't really do people much justice I suppose.

The title of this post is probably the best I've had yet. It really is a question about if this whole facebook thing is really connective. It's a bit voyeristic or completely voyeristic depending on the person. I actually want to re-establish relationships and that's going to take more than random facebook posts and what people put of themselves online.

I'm limiting myself in how much I'm on facebook since I recognize it's role in my life. Even with it being limited, it's still added online time. Kids are sleeping, at least almost all the time, if I'm on facebook but it's still something that Hubs and I each spend some time on when there's other things we could be doing. Facebook won't ruin or marriage or anything like that, but the laundry pile isn't getting dealt with quite as fast and the car isn't getting cleaned out as often. Not problems, but does reconnecting online detract from my actual life? That's the balance of having both that I'm striving for. It's still at least a little bit of a question. Fortunately, it's very easy to say "bye facebook!" and not look back if needed.

April 13, 2011

Feel loved?

Let me start by saying this: I generally feel loved. Sparky and Spunky are both affectionate kids and make no bones about me being one of their top people. I'd say I'm their favorite, but I don't think I am across the board. But certainly in some ways. But this isn't about them as loved as they let me know I am.

This time, it's about Hubs. But not in a conventional way. He does a lot that let's me know I'm loved. He's good that way. He's good lots of ways.

He knows that I've had some people saying some unkind things about me lately and that I'm choosing not to engage with them. It's part of having given up drama for lent and part of just.... aiming for maturity in my 30's. Recognizing what I have room for in my life and what I don't. I do have room for spending time with friends and family. I do have time for learning new things and doing things for the sheer joy of it. I don't have time (and won't make it) for drama and junk. This is pretty much the only place I say anything about it. Anyway, that's the context for what's to come.

The other day I was on the phone with someone who was having some difficulties. I was in a position of having knowledge that could help (which is why she called) and am completely detached from her difficulties so I had an outside perspective. Hubs listened to my side of the conversation as I walked around on the phone. After I hung up, he said "Wow, you're good at that. That's not something you can be trained to do." It just made me feel all warm and gooey (yeah, I said it!) that someone who knows me so well and for so long paid me such a nice compliment out of the blue. He was still impressed by something that wouldn't have otherwise been a blip in my day and let me know he appreciates me.

Thanks Hubs! I love you too! You're my favorite!

April 9, 2011

Get Wise?

Sparky and I have been talking about princesses a lot lately. Lovely. Awesome. Just what I wanted. Then again, I'm glad she's talking to me about it and not just buying what the stores are trying to sell her.

As a side note, if you haven't read Cinderella Ate My Daughter, give it a read. It's thought provoking but not quite earth shattering. Oh, is it in poor taste to say that? Opps. I hope not.

We went to the ballet of Cinderella not too long ago and I forgot to tell her the story ahead of time so I don't think much of it made sense to her. It was pretty dancing, pretty costumes and a fair bit of whispered"mama, are they done?" She enjoyed it, but the one thing she seemed to understand was that Cinderella was a princess at some point. So far, Sparky thinks that a princess is a ballerina, or at least most of the time.

Today she was pretending that a wash cloth was a diaper (love it!) and said something about there being a princess on the diaper. I glanced over and it was the one with Angelina Ballerina on it. She has no idea who that is, but she recognized the costume and dance pose I guess. She understood that it was a ballerina which again, equates to princess right now.

I asked her if she knew what a princess was and she said no. I told her "a princess is the daughter of a king and queen, or the wife of a princess." Next thing I hear from Sparky: "this princess is the wise of a prince!"

Yup kid, you got it! :)

April 6, 2011

Want to fight like a 3 year old?

Thus far there's very little fighting in my house. Both kids bicker a little here and there, but that's about the extent of it. In thinking about it though, I like the way little little kids fight. They yell, they sometimes hit, they cry, they lay it all out. The have their fight, they feel their emotions and then they move on with life. I remember when I was growing up that the worst insult my friends and I would fling at each other was "You can't come to my birthday party!"

As an adult, the fighting I see around me is much more disturbing. Fortunately, there isn't much of it, but it's much more a war of words, agenda's and subtle insults that a 3 year old doesn't even understand. There's generally not yelling, hitting, or raw emotion spewed all over the place. Sometimes crying, sometimes absolute disrespect, sometimes just junk. It's not all laid out there, dealt with and then over. It lingers, the relationships change and often, things are never the same.

Maybe we should institute a "fight like a toddler day". A day to just lay it all out, deal with it, and then make up and play together.
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