Have a wonderful end of the year!

I am officially off for 5 days.  Hooray!  I’m looking forward to some extra time with my kiddos who have needed some extra Mama time the past few days.

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It’s nice, though, after a rough week or so.  I think things are slowly mellowing a bit and I’m really keeping an eye on how I handle Enzo and his tantrums. It’s been more about trying to head them off really, and while it can take more time, I’ve already talked him out of a couple of tantrums.  I really do think he’s appreciated it too because after it happened is when he started being super Mama needy. This morning his dad brought him in and he was wriggly with the happiness and practically leapt into my arms.  Maybe both of them can sense that I’m really trying to work on keeping my anger in check and trying to just be more at ease.

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I’m not perfect and got snappy this morning because he was pushing my buttons, but I noticed it, and stopped myself from falling into that back-and-forth with him and he did cooperate.  I’m figuring him out, though, so now I just need to show Josh how to do the same and our mornings/evenings should go easier. I know we’re still going to have those moments where nothing will stop a tantrum, but that’s fairly normal for this age.  As for why Miss Phoebe has been super clingy… I couldn’t tell you, but I think it might be teething and just this age as well.

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One of things we both need to work on is that sometimes I have to be okay with her just crying, and she in turn also has to learn that sometimes she has to wait.  She gets rather impatient very quickly and then suddenly she’s got crocodile tears rolling down her cheeks.  I, of course, get stressed because my immediate reaction is to stop all the crying.  ALL the crying.  I always knew this would be hard for me… ever since middle school when we had to take those fake babies home for the weekend and mine was colicky and cried all the time. I was so stressed out because I felt I was failing as a fake mom to my fake baby because I couldn’t make it stop crying.  So, yeah, going into real parenthood, I knew that crying babies stressed me out. Boy were we lucky with two calm babies!

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All that being said, knowing that Winter is the hardest time of the year for me, I’m doing what I can to be more diligent when it comes to taking care of my mental and physical health.  They obviously respond better to me when I can remain calm, so my goal is to continue to be mindful in everything I do.  I can’t tell you how good it felt when I was able to talk Enzo out of a tantrum that normally would have led to 10 minutes of screaming and yelling.  It only took a minute or two and it actually gained us time by just stopping everything and calmly helping him take a breath and figure out what went wrong and how to fix it.  I shall be Whisperer of Toddlers!

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Anyhoo, here’s  to a wonderful last week of 2014 and a mindful, peaceful 2015!

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Send coffee… and donuts while you’re at it.

I am especially thankful for a short work week after a not so very restful night… or rather several nights.  We’re adjusting things and hoping that Enzo will not keep fighting bedtime and will also not keep waking up in the middle of the night, but in the meantime, Phoebe has also decided not to sleep through the night.  We’ve all been a bit fussy due to lack of sleep.  Remember moments like this? I do… I do.

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Last night it started with an earlier bedtime for Enzo, however it was still an hour later before he finally stayed put in bed.  We think his clock may be too bright now… go figure.  However, he still woke up at midnight, so I stumbled into his room and ended up laying down with him, only to wake up at 2:00am because I could hear Phoebe squirming and fussing in her crib.  Josh was blissfully sleeping, despite the monitor by his head, so I found her pacifier and crawled back into our bed.  Around 3:00, though, Phoebe was standing up in her crib and fussing.  I may have swatted Josh a few times and told him it was his turn to get up.  Baby girl was wide awake, though. Josh changed her and she continued to stay wide awake in our bed rolling around, crawling on top of us.

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Then at around 4:00, I heard Enzo again… he was back and whining at the gate in his doorway.  Up I got, and talked Enzo into crawling back into bed by agreeing to lay down with him again.  He put his hand on my arm this time – probably trying to make sure I wouldn’t get up again.  He fell asleep, though, and aroudn 4:30 I headed back to our bed… only to find Baby Girl had completely taken over my side of the bed.  I gave up and made Josh give up part of his half and managed to close my eyes for half an hour before it was time to get up.  All this to say… I’m tired and really looking forward to a short week even though it won’t mean sleeping in like it would have in the past.  Ha ha.  Maybe we can convince the kiddos to sleep until 6:00 or 7:00 if we’re lucky.  😉

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Morning Routines

I used to be a morning person… even during the week I’d get up early so I had at least half an hour or so to read a book while I slowly drank my coffee and ate some breakfast and enjoyed the morning quiet all by myself. Weekends were even better because I could just read until whenever… heck, I could just read all day if I wanted to and it was magical. Magical, I tell you!

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Oh, how things change.  Now I get up as late as I can, which isn’t very late… 5:00am is a horrible time of day. I shower, feed the cats and then proceed to get the kiddo’s stuff ready (bottles, breakfast, lunch) and hope that no one gets up early otherwise everything is thrown off kilter.

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Granted, in the past couple of weeks since I took these photos, Phoebe is no longer on formula, and only takes one bottle of milk to day care, which saves me a few minutes in the morning. Hey, every second counts.

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On a great morning the kids sleep until 6:15-6:30 and hopefully Josh is out of the shower by that time so I can start blow-drying my hair and then feed Phoebe her morning bottle because baby girl is like me and needs food in her tummy fairly quick.

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Due to lack of time, my own breakfast usually waits until I get to work.  Enzo will wake up and depending on his mood be happy and joyful and want to watch an episode of one of his favorite shows, or will tell us all to go away and stay in bed as long as possible before wandering out and demanding a snack. He’ll either accept breakfast as an alternative or fuss for a bit if we tell him he can have breakfast, but not snacks.

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At some point I’ll find time to get myself ready. Thankfully, I don’t really take that long unless I have no idea what to wear and then the morning ends with me rushing around trying to finish while helping Josh dress the kiddos and keep them amused.

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Somehow we always end up somewhat rushed the last 10-15 minutes, especially now that cars need to be warmed up and the kids need to be bundled up to brace the cold.  Generally the kiddos will amuse themselves fairly well, but lately Phoebe has been a tad clingy in the morning, which can make rushing around difficult.

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On the mornings when they wake up early, we are sometimes able to get out the door on time, but the morning is more stressful because we have tired, whiny munchkins to trip over, so I’d almost rather trade being late for happier kids.  One of these days I’ll hopefully work closer to the kids’ day care, which would be ideal. My office move really threw things off and added driving time.  Oh well, in the meantime we do our best to manage the chaos and as long as everyone is smiling by the time we get to day care, I call it a fairly good morning. 😉

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Big Boy Bed

For about a month now, Enzo has been in his new big boy bed. And by big, I mean fairly big.  When we bought his crib we liked the fact that it converted from a crib to a toddler bed to a full-sized bed because we figured it would just grow with him until he moved out and would therefore save us tons of money in the long run.  We’ll see about that.  Anyway, we decided to move Enzo into the full size bed kind of early because he wasn’t sleeping well and we couldn’t keep him in his toddler bed.  We (foolishly) thought that maybe a bigger bed would be the solution, and in some ways it has, if only because now instead of constantly letting him sleep in our bed there is now room for a parent in his bed.  Yeah… not exactly fixing the problem, but we’ll work on that later.

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All in all, he has been super excited about his bed, though, despite how much real estate it takes up in his room.  The day we surprised him with it, he immediately wanted to climb up (which was also the moment we realized he’d need something like a stool to get in bed) and test its bounciness.  Phoebe also insisted on joining the party, but seemed more interested in hanging over the side.

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One really nice thing about the bigger bed is how much more comfortable it is for reading books, and it makes getting Enzo into bed much easier because he’s already in bed when it’s time to say good-night. Now if he’d only stay in bed once we close the door… I guess we’ll get there eventually.

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Despite the large size, I think it’ll be a while before we can take the bumpers off the sides considering what a wild sleeper he is still is. There are some nights where I’ve wondered if we need bumpers at the foot of the bed because of how close he’s come to rolling off… or maybe that actually means he doesn’t need the bumpers because he stopped himself in his sleep.  I think I’ll wait either way if only to avoid that potential bump in the night.

Toddler Transitions

It’s been a busy week for the kiddos.  Enzo transitioned to the preschool room from the toddler room on Monday, and you can tell it’s been both easy and hard for him.  Overall he really enjoys the atmosphere of the new room, but at the same time he really misses his toddler room teachers.  He has those moments where he says he doesn’t want to go to preschool and runs to the other door saying he wants to go to the “Little Room,” but once he’s where he needs to be he does just fine.

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I’m reminded at the most random times just how big he’s getting.  His vocabulary gets bigger all the time, as well as his imagination and his independence.  Depending on his mood, he likes helping me bake things (which I don’t do often enough), but more importantly he enjoys the part where you get to taste everything.  I love watching him sneak frozen blueberries if we’re making muffins or pancakes, and chocolate chips if we’re making cookies. Now, you’re more likely to find him counting said blueberries or chocolate chips, as well as pointing out letters on packaging.

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We were at the zoo this past weekend and he walked up to the tiger sign and excitedly pointed out all of the letters (correctly) and it made me realize that he’ll probably be reading even sooner than I would have thought. Both of our kids have a great love of books, which makes me so happy, and it’s so much fun to listen to Enzo read from memory as it’s a glimpse into what will be the near future.  The other day Josh peeked into his room where Enzo was sitting with a book and his Mickey Mouse doll and he looked up and said, “Go away, Daddy, I’m reading to Mickey.”  He can be a little sassy at times, but it was adorable to sneakily watch him read his construction book to Mickey.

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I’m really glad and grateful that we have a great day care/preschool that is teaching him so much.  I love hearing about his day, even if it’s usually always the same thing…

Me: Did you have a good day?

Enzo: Yeah!  I play with Nolan and Bentley in the sandbox!

He has a mild obsession with sand right now. He has some kinetic sand at home that he likes to play with his mini construction vehicles in, and I actually prefer that to Playdoh because it’s less messy (no residue left behind).  It’s the little things.

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