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Sunday, June 30, 2013

I'm changing my expectations.

I've always had the goal of nursing my babies for a year. I'm not sure where I came up with that goal. I know in part it had something to do with not wanting to spend money on formula or tote formula around with me. I'm sure that is mixed in with wanting to bond with baby and giving baby what's "best". (I know bottle feeding mamas are starting to bristle. Please don't feel condemned by this cheapskate.) I didn't meet that goal with my last two babies. Something went wrong with my milk production around the four month mark. This decrease in production may have coincided with my lack of patience for squirmy babies who can't focus, my desire to have a full night's sleep, and my addiction to Mountain Dew. When you pee at night before bed and you realize you haven't had to go since you woke up that morning, you probably aren't getting enough water. So the weening process started earlier with Schroeder and Maggie, and they were both done breast feeding by 7-9months. I've made the choice to not rest my mind on guilty thoughts. Guilt can swallow mothers up whole if they let it.
I've also decided that I'm throwing out this one year goal. I'm replacing that big goal with three little ones. First, I plan to drink water when I sit down to nurse. Secondly, I plan to nurse "on demand". That is, as long as baby doesn't take advantage of her eating freedom. And lastly, I plan to minimize multi-tasking during nursing. This is my first post iPhone baby. This is a GOOD thing as surfing my iPhone takes less than working on my laptop. Still, it's good to just unplug for twenty minutes and look at my take in her beauty and pick the wax out of her ear. I'm not sure where these goals will take us. I'm determined to just see how it goes and breakdown to buy formula if I need to.
Maggie pulled her shirt up the other day to nurse her baby. I loved it. It's less complicated to nurse babies around big sisters than big brothers. When Maggie was born my boys were four and one. Now, they are four and almost seven. I like that they get to see how a baby is cared for. They'll never be mommies, but they will hopefully be present, aware daddies someday. Maybe they'll even deliver a baby like their daddy did. I'm still working out how I feel about how covered up I should be around them. Is it weird that Schroeder asks if she has drank on both sides? He is adamant that I should say drink and not eat. "She is drinking milk not eating it!" Julian is more aware of the social awkwardness of it all. If mom needs privacy when she dresses and showers than does she need it while she nurses? The two of us are working out our boundaries. It seems to be a theme lately that we ask "How hippie are we?".

Saturday, June 22, 2013

I will not be a guilt ridden vacationer.

You have to get into a new head space on vacation. If I drive all the way to the beach, I feel like I should be on the beach every day. But vacation is for relaxing, right? So by the time you sleep in till nine, wake up and have a leisurely breakfast and shower, it's already eleven and the sun is getting high and hot and you wonder if the beach really sounds like fun (especially with five kids). Then you feel guilty for not taking full advantage of your vacation. Guilt isn't a relaxing emotion, though.
Last year, I was determined to be a good vacationer. The first day in South Carolina, I got the kids up and ready determined to spend two full hours at the beach before lunch and necessary nap time. The Atlantic was rough that morning and had a strong undertow, something I didn't fully recognize until one of our sand toys got swept quickly in and was lost to oblivion. I've had several nightmares this year about that water only it wasn't the toy that got swept away but our four year old son instead. I decided being a good vacationer shouldn't include throwing out basic parenting sense.
This year, we have a three week old with us. I'm not sure what the "rules" are with getting an infant in the pool. Guessing by the number of teeny swimsuits Target was selling (zero) it appears to be socially unacceptable to take a newborn swimming. I bought her a long sleeved swim top and a big sun hat (both one or two sizes too big) and we'll see what kind of looks I get when I bring her poolside.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Destin is our destin-ation.

We have five kids in our van, and we are headed to the beach. We have a DVD player in our van that can only be used when we take long trips. If you can't get through a whole movie it's not considered a long trip which means it's a twice a year privilege.
D'arcy created a plan that the other kids somehow agreed to. The oldest kid gets to choose the movie first then the next oldest and so on. It has run fairly smoothly today except when Schroeder has gotten to choose. His older siblings are trying to dupe him. He picked Toy Story 2 the first go around and D'arcy and Julian voted and vetoed his choice. Yeah, you made the system D'arcy and no one has veto power.
The second time around, Schroeder picked Toy Story 2 again. D'arcy "accidentally" dropped the DVD on the ground and couldn't find it because it's dark outside. We tell her to turn on the light. She says she thought that wasn't allowed. Her daddy HATES when they turn on their lights because they've been known to leave them on and drain our battery. That girl is so clever. We tell her to turn it on anyway for the second it will take to locate the DVD.
Then his siblings take issue with the fact that they already watched it. Again, they don't have veto power. This is why it's smart to make the kids make the plan. No one watches anything until you make a plan you can all agree on. Then, we can throw our hands up and remind them who made the rules. D'arcy says that maybe they should watch Toy Story 1 or 3. Not a bad suggestion. Schroeder tells her they are at home. D'arcy says, "We'll, it's too late to go back." Since we are in Montgomery, Alabama, I would say that's sort of an understatement.
Julian whines that this will be SO BORING. I tell him to give me his headphones. I'm just trying to ease his boredom. He shakes his head and stops his whining.
I'm so glad we bought two extra sets of headphones from Amazon. We are free to listen to whatever we want. I sat through multiple hours of jam bands on Radio Paradise. Now, Stephen is being forced to listen to my mix of Al Green, Fresh Air, and Taylor Swift.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Stephen has been taking good care of us.

He's been working from home most days.  He's been driving me where I want to go and carrying the car seat to the car.  He's been reminding me to drink water and take my vitamins.  But today, he went back to working at the office all day.  Tomorrow is the first day of summer break so I'll be loading all five up by myself.  My quiver (and my van) is officially full.