Splitting Time

I think our little lady might finally be getting into a new nighttime schedule.  The past two nights she hasn’t woken up until around 5:00am, which has been a very pleasant change considering she usually wakes up at 1:00am.  Granted, she’s a lot more hungry and vocal when she sleeps longer, so the trick is trying to keep her quiet so she doesn’t wake up her brother.

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Overall Phoebe seems to be a quiet observer, taking in everything around her.  I’d love to know what she’s thinking, but half the time the look on her face tells me she thinks we’re all insane.  She may be right.  Thankfully she finds our insanity amusing for the most part.

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All too soon these baby days will be over, and I try not to dwell on that too often.  It’s so different the second time around, though. Not only does it fly be even faster, but it’s both easier and more difficult at the same time.  Mostly I feel torn between how much time I spend with both of my munchkins on a daily basis. I feel bad if I don’t spend a lot of one-on-one time with Phoebe because Enzo got so much since he was born first, but then I feel bad if I don’t spend enough time with Enzo because I’ve been snuggling Toots. I never had guilt going back to work when it was just Enzo, but now I definitely feel it simply because I feel like I’m never giving them enough of my time and when I do I’m often tired in the evening and short on patience when it comes to toddler tantrums.

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This really just tells me I need to reprioritize and maybe come up with a schedule that allows me to make time for each kiddo, myself, my husband, and to make sure I’m taking care of myself mentally and physically so that way I’m not as tired or cranky when I’m at home.  Thankfully with the weather getting better and better I’m more motivated to exercise again, and while we often make dinners, I think I need to start making a lunch the night before I’m less likely to just grab something frozen or fast on my way out the door.  I’m so focused on making sure Enzo eats well that I sometimes forget about Josh and I.  😉

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Friday Links

I’m looking forward to the weekend, and slightly warmer temperatures.  Fridays are always difficult in terms of motivation, though… all I can think about is the weekend ahead and find myself distracted while drinking my morning coffee.  So, how about some fun/interesting links?

Some of these Disney movie facts I already knew.

A fun video that explains how big the universe is.

A fascinating Ted Talk featuring zombie roaches and other examples of parasitic manipulation.

I can’t help but be a little intrigued and excited about this outrageous Jem announcement.

This might explain why the symmetry loving side of me has always loved Wes Anderson.

Just because Mario is awesome

Just because Mario is awesome

Weekly Prompt – Motivation

I am once again participating in Sometimes Sweet’s weekly journal prompts, and this week the prompt is:

Everyone has different things that keep them going. Sometimes it’s the people around us, other times it might be what’s waiting for us on the other side of hard work. Whatever it may be, there’s usually some sort of motivation to get up every day, get things done, or maybe even go the extra mile. With that said, what would you say is your biggest motivation in life? Has it always been this way? 

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I can’t tell you how many days I’ve wanted to throw the covers over my head when the alarm goes off.  I’m sure we’ve all had those moments where we’d like nothing more than to hide from the world and either sleep all day or at the very least not shower and stay curled up binge watching a favorite show on Netflix.  When I was single, I could do just that and not even think twice about. My only responsibility was myself and that was that.

The moment you become a parent, everything changes. You’re no longer responsible for yourself alone, and you have these amazing beings that look like you and depend on you for pretty much everything.  While Josh and I are a team and can singly look after our brood as needed, I have this innate need to be there and to spend as much time with them as I can.  Even on bad days, I feel like I have to make the effort to get up and do something just so that my kids don’t notice that mommy isn’t well, whether it be physical or mental or both. It’s important to me that I make the most of the moments we have together, and the effort that it sometimes takes isn’t without reward.  A simple hug or smile from my two favorite people is all it takes to brighten my mood, even if just a little bit.

Beyond that, though, my kids are my motivation to do more and be the best I can be.  I want to be a good example for them and hopefully inspire them in return one day.  I want them to dream and hopefully will always encourage them to follow those dreams.  I think it’s important for them to see that their parents are living a full life, and staying true to themselves, though.  I’ve always been so indecisive in terms of what I want to do with my life, so I’ve stalled and gone back and forth for years, always worried that what I really want to do won’t be practical.  Sure, stability is great and a steady income, but I think being happy with what you do is the most important thing of all, so I really want to encourage our kids to do what makes them truly happy one day.

I’ve done a lot of thinking soul-searching over the past few months, and slowly I think things are falling into place, or at the very least I’m becoming more aware and certain of what I want to accomplish and do.  If it weren’t for the kiddos, I probably wouldn’t even think much about stepping outside my comfort zone, but thanks to them I feel more ready to take risks… small risks, but things that make me squirm nonetheless.

Date Night… er… Day

While I’m a lot more comfortable leaving Phoebe and Enzo in someone else’s care than I was when it was just Enzo, Josh and I don’t really go out on dates all that often. We have a few babysitters (in the form of family), but schedules don’t always coincide so more often than not we just hang out as a family on the weekend.  Honestly? I’m okay with that. However, Josh and I have discovered that sometimes the easiest way to spend time alone is to just take a day off of work, drop the kids off at day care, and then do whatever the heck we want to. In February it ended up snowing on our day off, so after we went out to breakfast we went home, snuggled up with the cats, and watched ‘The Hobbit.’ Wild, right?

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This month, though, we thought it would be fun to get out and go to a couple of breweries and hit up some antique stores, something we both enjoy as you never know what kinds of oddities you might stumble upon. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, and I wanted to try somewhere we hadn’t been before, so we went to The Freehouse, which also happened to sort of be on our way to Stillwater. What better way to start the day then with a beer tasting, right?

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The food was also really, really good.  Mine was basically hash browns covered in eggs and cheese, and while that might sound boring, it was definitely not bland and I ate until I thought I would explode. The beer was also quite tasty, and we each found a combo that we enjoyed (out of 7 total).  I’m usually not a fan of really hoppy beers, but apparently my taste buds have been changing as those along with the stout were my favorites.

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It was a little chilly and overcast, but we bundled up and walked around Stillwater anyway stopping in at just about every antique store that was open, or at least as many as we had time for.  I forgot just how big some of these stores are, and my wish list kept growing and growing at each one we went to.  There was one in particular that had the most amazing furniture and suddenly my daydreams of owning a small home near the beach turned into owning a castle on the moors of Scotland. One can dream, right?  Granted, each store also had its own share of nightmare inducing horrors such as one of the worst examples of taxidermy I’ve seen.

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Those eyes will haunt me forever.

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Eventually breakfast wore off, and we decided it was time to get more sustenance and libations. We hadn’t been to the Lift Bridge Brewery, so we headed over for one of their tastings and ordered pizza from a local place to deliver while we were there.  I wish I could remember the name of the pizza joint because they had the most amazing garlic bread knots.  Lift Bridge also had a fantastic stout, and after our tasting I tried out their root beer, which is equally awesome.

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All in all, it was a day well spent, and now we’re just planning next month’s date.

Balancing Technology & Kids

Try as we might not to fall into the technology trap, it’s hard not to at times with so many handy gadgets.  Since the time Enzo was a baby he’s been infatuated with our cell phones, but we held off on letting him use ours for a long time. When we did give in, I had a phone that he couldn’t really access anything on easily, so he’d just talk on it and that was it.  Then he realized our phones did so much more and he wanted to be able to watch videos of himself non-stop, so he’d commandeer our cell phones and not want to give them up. We figured it wouldn’t hurt to just give him my old phone and remove pretty much everything except for the gallery of photos and videos. Our little narcissist could spend hours watching videos of himself. Ha ha.

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More recently I decided to put an app on his phone that teaches the alphabet, numbers, shapes, and colors. It’s really simple to use and he loves it.  I figure since its educational there isn’t that much harm in it.  I am aware of the articles out there that warn against the dangers of too much screen time (mostly TV) for young kids, but we do try and keep it to a minimum.  We don’t have cable and for a long time even if Enzo wanted to watch a show he would only watch about 5 minutes and then run around – we realized he just liked the noise in the background. 

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Times are changing, though, and he’s paying more attention to what he watches, which means we also need to be more aware of how often the TV is on.  We also discovered that while Enzo never really noticed the TV as a baby, Phoebe is very aware and easily distracted by the magical screen when it’s on. Some mornings we bribe Enzo with Bob the Builder or Thomas when he doesn’t want to get dressed and Phoebe will roll over and look up at the TV or if I position her facing away from it, she’ll look at it upside down or try to scoot so she can see what’s on. It’s pretty funny, but it makes me realize we’ll need to be much more aware this time around so that Phoebe isn’t overexposed.

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One thing Josh and I have definitely agreed on is that neither kiddo will have their own TVs in their rooms until they’re much older and tablets and other technology will be something we monitor closely and won’t allow them to use on a regular basis.  We appreciate that in this day and age it’s beneficial that they know how to use these items, but it doesn’t mean we want them attached to a screen all the time either.  Just another reason that Josh and I have decided we need to put our own phones down in the evenings until after the kids go to bed (minus a quick photo snap here and there). 😉

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