2014

I have not been much of a blogger these past few years. But here’s all my updates: 

My 8yo is an awesome, smart, sciencey kid. She is really into piano and nature and Minecraft and reading and playing outside. 

My 4yo will go to kindergarten roundup. Gulp. First time ever for this family, since I homeschooled the eldest for kindy. He was diagnosed with ASD this past January (totally not a surprise, at least not for me), and is really blossoming in preschool.

My 20-month-old is such a funny combination of my two older ones at that age. Very verbal like her sister, but also very rough and tumble like her brother. Just her own little hilarious person.

I recently switched to day shift at work, and my quality of life has gone up about 7000% as a result.

That is all for now. The kids are hollering for more food.  

Content

It’s 4:19 pm and I’m snuggling my sleeping 13-month-old in the big blue rocking chair. She has a cold and is snoring. My in-laws took the big kids to McDonalds and probably also to the park. My husband is out on the porch swing, reading a textbook to prepare for the EMT classes that he’s planning to start in the spring. I just sorted through my middle child’s clothing and weeded out all of the outgrown stuff. I am weirdly excited about finally getting the laundry in this house under control; laundry has been chaos ever since we became a family of five last summer.

I have a plate of tortilla chips and salsa, with a side of chocolate chips, on the table next to me. In one hour, I will leave for work, and I’m so grateful that I work with a group of women that are so fun to be around, and that I love my job. At 6:30 am tomorrow, I will run by the grocery store on the way home. I will eat breakfast with my family, and then sleep for a few hours, before getting up to tackle some more laundry and to lay out some school clothes for Monday morning.

I love my life.

Playing catch-up

I’ve barely posted anything for the past year or so. Having that third kid just put me over the edge in terms of energy level; imagine that. My kids are on their second to last day of school, and I hope to have a little more free time this summer, since I won’t be in the car for an hour or more each day driving to two different schools. Probably unrealistic, but there it is.

Tonight my oldest is having a friend over for a sleepover, then after she gets picked up tomorrow, I’ll take my two older kids to my parents’ house to spend the night there, and leave the baby with daddy for the night while I go work a 12-hour shift. Then Sunday and Monday, we’ll get some long-awaited time as a family, and then last day of school on Tuesday.

Then it’s on to summer reading program at the library, weekly piano lessons for the eldest, and trying to figure out how to structure these kids’ days all summer. If there is one thing M and I have learned through putting the kids in public school, it’s that these kids thrive on structure. M and I both tend towards non-structure, so we’ll have to make an effort to keep them in a decent routine without the external time crunch of the school schedule.

My 4yo will go into his second year of developmental preschool this fall, and will have the same teachers, aides, and SLP and OT. The only thing that will change for him will be riding the bus, going 5 days a week instead of 4 days, and going in the afternoon rather than mornings.

My 7yo, however, will move up to second grade, and will obviously have a new teacher and a different mix of kids in her class. I’m sure her new teacher will be fine, but I’m a little weepy about my daughter having to leave the Awesomest Teacher Ever behind. She was the perfect teacher for a shy kid transitioning from homeschool to public school. My only consolation is that, with two younger kids, and only two first-grade teachers at this tiny school, we have a very good chance of getting her as a teacher again in the coming years.

Goodbye, Winter Break

So. I finally got to spend some time with my lovely sister over Christmas break. She left for home again this past week. It was fun, although hopefully next time I’ll have more free time to see her and we won’t have a blizzard smack dab in the middle of her visit. The best part was our ‘girl date’ with my oldest daughter. We drove to Joann fabrics with her and ate at Steak and Shake, and then later the same day, we had a ‘boy date’ and took my 3-year-old to pick up Chinese food and to buy a coloring book at the dollar store.

We’re starting to get some financial breathing space again, now that I’ve been back at my job for a couple of months. Enough space, at least, that I’m not freaking out at the thought of filling my gas tank or picking up some groceries. Things were pretty tight for a while when I first came off maternity leave. I do need to pick up more hours than I’m currently working if we’re going to pay off our car loan anytime soon, but I’m trying to hold off on that until the baby is old enough that I no longer need to pump at work. One of my biggest worries lately is trying to pump enough milk for the time that I’m away from her. I just don’t have the massive milk supply that I took for granted with my two older kids.

I found some nice chunky purple yarn at the thrift store on one of my outings with my sister, and I’ve been making a baby hat with it, using one of these:

It’s simple enough that I can manage it while balancing a sleeping baby on my lap. I decided to make similar hats for my older kids, so I picked up some rainbow yarn for my girl, and a darker pattern for my dark-eyed boy.

Today is Saturday, the last weekend of Christmas break. My two older kids are outside, sledding with their cousin and with the two friends that my daughter had spend the night last night. They moved to our school district over break, which we’re very excited about. This is one of those rare weekends when my husband and I are both home at the same time. Lately I’ve scheduled most of my shifts for weekends (thank goodness for self-scheduling), which works out best for not needing a babysitter, but unfortunately also deprives us of family time together.

Lately, I’ve enjoyed going through all the archives of Bluebirdbaby. I love her photos, and her general spirit of optimism and creativity inspires me.

I’ve also been enjoying this song over and over, ever since I heard it on the Warm Bodies trailer the other day. I told my husband that he has to take me out to see this movie. Not counting grocery shopping ‘dates’, we haven’t been on a real date since my oldest was a toddler (6 years ago!) so I’d say it’s high time. ;)

Last Friday

Well. I have to admit that after last Friday’s events, I went to Kroger the next morning after work and went on a bit of a spending spree, buying gift cards for both of my older kids’ teachers, classroom aides, and for my son’s SLP and OT, with the plan to put these in their Christmas cards, along with a heartfelt ‘thank you’ note to each and every one.. Of course, buying them a Starbucks gift card is completely inadequate thanks for all that they do for my kids every weekday. I appreciated them before, of course, but before Friday, it never occurred to me that when they sign up to work with little kids, they also accept the responsibility to protect the kids from danger, even to the point of sacrificing their lives as several adults did last week. It’s hard to think about it.

And now it’s winter

So this fall has been really hectic. The baby has had one illness after another, brought home by her generous siblings, culminating in bronchiolitis (viral pneumonia). For several days, I was worried that we would end up in the hospital over this, but despite all her wheezing and retracting, she satted 97% in the ped’s office even before the treatment they gave her there, and after a few days with the home nebulizer, she turned the corner. The last night of every 4 hour nebs, she seemed to be on the verge of turning the wrong kind of corner, but the next morning, her wheezing finally started to decrease, and she started breathing easier and tolerating less frequent nebs.  Now she is nursing a zillion times a day, trying to make up for the decrease in eating while she was sick.

Thanks to all this night nursing, I am low on brain power and I have felt like an idiot at work lately. Forgetful as all get out, which obviously is not a good trait in a nurse. I was conned into working a weeknight this past week, and let me tell you, sleeping less than 5 hours total, then getting up at 6 am and shuttling the kids around all day, then going to work from 6 pm to 6:30 am, with no nap beforehand, is no recipe for good nursing care.

M and I have had a couple of weekends off together lately, and it was so nice. We could actually get stuff done. It just almost made me want to sign up for more weeknights, in order to aim for more weekends off. But after the other night, I learned my lesson, and remembered why it is that I normally strive to work weekends-only.

So. Back to work this weekend, then off until next Friday. Back to normal-ish, thank God. Now to go investigate where my half dressed 3-year old has wandered off to, and why there are mysterious clanking sounds coming from the direction of my bedroom.

Aside

So tired. Waiting for the phone call from work- I’m 95% sure that I will be called in tonight. It’s one of my designated holidays to be on call. If I do get called, great, time and a half to refill my sad-panda bank account. If not though, that would be swell, cause HALLOWEEN.

Also, holy cow is it nice to be working again. Working or not working isn’t in any way an optional thing given our budget, but I feel very blessed to have a job that I love. :)

Aside

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