February 26, 2008

Every new mom wonders this...

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Don't chastise me, you know I'm right! Once we get past the wonderment that we not only grew something THAT BIG in our abdomen but we also pushed it out of that tiny opening, we wonder what to do next. I mean, obviously, we feed it and hug it and tell it we love it a thousand times a day...but really, when will it entertain us? When do we get our money's worth?

Alas, it only takes a couple of months before they coordinate that gleeful, unadulterated smile that just lights up their whole face. After that, it's milestone after milestone, and they bring you unspeakable joy! Relish it, moms & dads, it goes by way too fast. Then you're privy to a new kind of joy:

February 25, 2008

Make it go, June!

Someone please kick my ass into gear! I have our entire bedroom, all of Beth's toys, and a few things in the kitchen to get packed by Friday. This does not include the randomly tossed crap out in the garage that needs to be sorted. It's now Monday morning, I've done NOTHING.

But I'm so excited! Our own place again! I know I'm whipping a dead horse, but most of you have no idea how trying it is to live with in-laws when you've been on your own for the better part of 10 years. I'm also very excited to go shopping; we need a few new appliances, and bunch of kitchen stuff, lamps, etc. Yay! IKEA, here we come!

February 24, 2008

In honor of the best guy EVER!

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February 22, 2008

I wish I was still a kid.

This is what's going on in our room right now. Two sleeping babes. Not pictured is the sleeping cat on our bed. I wish I was still a kid and got a daily nap! No chores that need doing, no blogs that need writing (I plan on launching my own registered blog soon and I need to get in the habit of writing daily), no air of certainty that the minute I drift off, at least one of the children will wake up.

Remember our childhood (I'm speaking to those of us born before 1986 or so)? We rode bikes, we played outside, we didn't vegetate in front of TVs and video games - at least not to the extent kids do today - and we used our imaginations. Kids today, all they do is let their minds rot with Grand Theft Auto or some NBA game on their Xbox or PS3. It's sad. They don't know the joy of climbing trees, riding bikes all day long, making up stories for the heck of it...maybe I lived an idyllic childhood, I don't know.

I know I want to raise my kids in the country. Where a kidnapping is a lot less likely and a drug deal isn't going down one block away. Where they'll spend more time outdoors than indoors, where they'll be forced to create their own fun, instead of looking to the TV for it. I'm so glad we won't have cable at our apartment. Thing 1 needs a lot less TV and Thing 2, well, I don't want him watching it at all. Thing 1 has watched so much TV since we moved in with the in-laws, I think she's forgotten how to play. I'm a bit ashamed, really, that I let it get this bad. That's why (among a million other reasons) I'm so excited about getting back into our own place. Thing 1 played her heart out when we were in Fremont, mainly because I limited her TV time.

The moral of the story: TV is pure evil. Okay, not pure evil. If the kids are busy or asleep, mommy and daddy will watch TV shows online. :o)

February 21, 2008

A lunar eclipse and a stellar meltdown

So last night, instead of doing the packing I'd been planning all day, my husband decided we all needed to be outside in the chilly night, watching the lunar eclipse. I was a little miffed but went along...after all, we won't see another one out here until 2010.

So we shuffle outside around 7:30 p.m., figuring we'd catch the last half of it (and in my opinion, the cooler half) and get back in around 8:00 p.m. The thirty minutes that followed were trying, to say the least. First I decided that the children were underdressed, so I ran back inside to grab hoodies and shoes. Then I decided I needed the camera to take pictures of the kids watching their first lunar eclipse, as well as attempting to photograph the eclipse itself.

Then the meltdown began.

We wanted Thing 1 to stay near the over-cluttered, white trash-looking slab of concrete front step because it was dark out and the grass was getting damp. It was close to her bedtime; we didn't want her getting dirty or wet. At three years old, after a few scoldings, you'd think she'd catch on. But all be damned if that girl doesn't push the envelope every. single. chance. she. gets. Every two minutes, she was inching her way away from us, peeking back at us, waiting for us to yell. So we would. And she'd do a little puppet-like tap dance, complete with flapping hands, dropping a few crocodile tears. If she wasn't doing this, she was emulating Dora in her own, megaphonic way, "STA-ARS! STA-ARS!"

[For those of you who aren't privy to the wonder that is Dora the Explorer, "Stars" are the Explorer Stars, whom you call to when you need to find things.]

So between yelling at her to stop screaming at the stars (they are, after all, light years away, she simply MUST yell at the top of her lungs, cupping her hands around her mouth, in order for them to hear her), and yelling at her to get back to the front step, she was just nine kinds of pissed off at us.

Finally, daddy had had enough. He marched her little butt inside to watch the rest of the eclipse from the bedroom window. She wanted Dora. No Dora. Oh, the humanity! She was in a full-on meltdown...face sopping wet from tears, blowing impressive snot bubbles, throwing herself down on every available piece of furniture, screaming at us, the whole ball of yarn.

It took me putting her to bed to calm her down. Someone remind me that these moments are few and far between, and that I really did want kids in the first place!

February 20, 2008

Missin' my dad

A lot has transpired in my life over the last 11+ years. I went to two proms. I graduated high school and college. I met a terrific man and married him. We moved to California and had two kids. My mom's had two open-heart surgeries, one of which was a transplant.

And my dad missed it all.

For readers who aren't aware, I lost my dad to leukemia in August 1996; I was 16. He died far too young and had much left in his life to do. I watched him pass away - no child should ever have to shoulder that burden. I never really dealt with his passing. I put on a stoic front and was strong for the sake of being strong. I kept myself busy and I think it helped my mom carry on. She got involved with everything I was involved in. For the first year or so after his passing, I could retreat into a frame of thought that made his death unreal - I could really convince myself for five to ten minutes at a time, that he wasn't gone, he was just in the hospital for chemo. Looking back on it, I should really have attempted to deal with everything.

At any rate, I miss him. I don't think the pain of losing a loved one, especially a parent, ever goes away. It just becomes easier to deal with your memories of them. I wish he could have seen all that's happened in my life, that he could meet his grandchildren. He loved children, he'd be thrilled with Thing 1 and Thing 2! Especially Thing 1 - she looks just like me.

As a believer in ghosts and the supernatural, I believe his spirit comes to visit from time to time, just to make sure I'm okay. So in a way, I think he's "met" our kids. I guess it's one of those things where you want just one more day with them, to tell them everything you didn't get a chance to tell them when they were alive. In my case, I never told my dad I loved him enough, or thanked him for being such a good dad to me. I was a teenager and in all honesty, kind of a brat. I take solace in thinking that he knew I was a teenager and that my attitude was just part in parcel, but I still want some of that time back to make things right.

Anyway, I miss him. That's all.

February 19, 2008

There's no place like home, there's no place like home, there's no place like home!!!

Holy apartments, Batman! We've found a place to live. It's the below-mentioned pricey pad, but we're going to make it work. Either I'll get a part-time gig at night or we'll find some other legal way to bring in money! I don't really care what we gotta do - I love this place and I'm all kinds of excited to be moving!

You have no idea what it's like to be at the mercy of your in-laws, especially in-laws that resent your presence with every fiber of their being and who think you're heathens because you're not "raising your children in the body of Christ." Whatever. They don't believe in allowing people their own beliefs - we're simply wrong and we're going to burn in hell. And it's a travesty that we're letting our children grow up with open minds instead of indoctrinating them with what we believe to be a bunch of hooey. All the bible is, is a collection of wildly-imaginative stories created to answer life's complicated questions. That's our opinion anyway.

But I digress, I'm shittin' kittens over this. I can't wait to break out the boxes and pack everything back up to move it back into our own space with OUR THINGS. The best part? For the first time in THREE YEARS, Thing 1 will have her very own room!!!! A place to keep her toys and her clothes and to have her sleep by herself. That's really all I've wanted since she was born. She deserves it. So whatever I have to do to make that happen, I'll do.

February 16, 2008

Can't we catch a break?

Seriously. We find a decent place and it's juuuuuust out of our price range. I mean, we can afford it, as long as we don't have anything else. No cable, no internet, and only the most basic phone service imaginable. Granted, you can live without the first two, but then any hope of starting my own, paid-for, ad-displaying, money-making blog goes down the drain. Along with that goes sharing photos of Thing 1 and Thing 2 with friends and family and communicating with a lot of people. So we don't know what we're going to do...we're still looking, but we've applied to the just-over-our-limit place and they're going to try to get us in, despite our shoddy credit. Then we have 72 hours to decide if we want to move in. Over the next few days, we're calling other places too, just to cover our bases and see if there's anything else available at possibly a better rate.

So I'm just kinda hatin' life right now. My in-laws want us out in the worst way, they make that evident every day in the way they talk to us, but we want to make sure we can afford where we decide to live. We have a very small window of time to accomplish this: by March 1st. So you can sense that it's crunch time.

I need a drink.

February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day!

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Going home...wherever that is...

I didn't realize how painstaking it would be to find a new place to live. When I found our first place out here, I found it online and decided that the price was right and did all of our negotiations over the phone. Not bad for a shot in the dark, really, and it was our home for 4 1/2 years. Now we've been at our in-laws for four months and are looking again. Man alive, rents have gone up since we first looked for a place!!! Anyway, we've pinpointed a couple of places we can afford, so we're going to check those out this weekend. One's in San Ramon and one's in Hayward. I'd prefer the ones in SR, simply because they look like nicer apartments and they have better amenities, and they're cheaper. So keep your fingers crossed for us!

I do long for our own place again. Living with any parents, whether their yours or your husbands, is a total drag. I won't get into the specifics of it...but suffice it to say we have to walk around on eggshells and cater to every whim they have in order to stay in their good graces. I've sprouted new lines on my face at the ripe old age of 28, and my husband has grown about 100 new gray hairs, since we moved in here. I miss our things, our space. Cross your toes for us, too.

February 13, 2008

Ah, my first blog.

I gave this stuff a whirl a year or so ago with LiveJournal, it didn't pan out. I blog occasionally on MySpace, but then my readership is limited. I have a degree in writing (ha ha, a B.S. in BS) so I figure I should put it to good use. Well, to use, anyway...the "good" part is yet to be determined.

I'm a stay-at-home mom to Thing 1 and Thing 2. Thing 1 is 3 years old and has boundless spirit; she does everything with 110% of her being, whether its screaming like a banshee or hugging you for no reason at all. I sincerely hope this spirit stays with her throughout her life - it will bring her unimaginable success, I'm sure of it. Thing 2 is but a few months old, he was born in October 2007. He's quite the alert little fellow and has been since Day One.

I've been married to my husband, Rob, for about 5 1/2 years. We met while I was in college at Slippery Rock University and he was visiting his mom in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We hit it off that week and two months later, he moved from California to Pennsylvania to be with me. In May 2003, we migrated west and landed in Fremont, where (for the most part) we've been ever since. We've carved out a nice little life for ourselves here and I'm really glad we took that leap.

I'm a Republican, I love the Pittsburgh Steelers, any concoction you can find in a bakery, and "The Office." Damn writers strike. I go the extra mile for my friends because that's what real friends do. My family is everything to me, even the ones who've seemingly written us off because we moved out here (out of sight, out of mind?). I may not be perfect, but I'm a people-pleaser to a fault, as well as brutally honest. If you can't take a good dose of truth, don't talk to me! I'm also a gossip. I can't keep a secret to save my life.

Lest I reveal too much and leave nothing to the imagination...or to write about in the future...I shall end this post. I look forward to sharing my daily musings with whomever accidentally stumbles upon my little niche of weblife.

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