Lucky number 3!

I am a terrible blogger. I know, I take breaks that are entirely too long, reappear out of nowhere with big news, then disappear again. It’s a terrible habit. I know I am no good at keeping up with this thing regularly, but I do love coming back to it later and seeing the big, important, emotional moments of my life written out. So, I keep blogging when I have something I feel like blogging about.

Right now, I have something huge!

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Adam impregnated me again. =D We are so excited! Our girls are incredible and beautiful and amazing and hilarious and we can’t wait to add to our brood… maybe this time we will get a little more testosterone in the house? We have actually known for quite a while, since the beginning of September, but kept it to ourselves while we did the initial confirmation and other fun doctor stuff. Now I am almost 10w along so we are sharing our incredible news with the world.

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The girls are basically oblivious to what’s going on, which is to be expected from a 1 year old and a 2 year old, but since they are older than Kaia was when Kalista arrived we are going to keep talking about it in the hopes that they will understand when the big day gets here. Right now, if I ask Kaia what’s in mommy’s belly she will say baby, and if we start talking about babies she will point to her own belly. ❤ Kalista knows how to say “baby” but that’s about the extent of her understanding. I am really excited to get them their own little baby dolls as the pregnancy progresses and teach them how to take care of them. Hopefully that will help them get excited and help it to click a little bit.

That’s my big announcement for this installment of As the Alexander’s Turn… stay tuned (but don’t hold your breath, who knows how long it will take me to post again) for upcoming developments. =P

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My, how things change.

It’s amazing how much things can change in such a short period of time.

In the last few months…

Adam has started a new job. He is now working for a marketing agency that works with digital media. He is a PHP developer and I have never seen him love a job as much as he loves this one. The company is fantastic, the people he works for are just as nerdy as he is, and they tell him how much they appreciate him which is something he has never really gotten in the past. He finally sees his job as a career and not just a paycheck, and the change in him is incredible. I am so proud of him, and things couldn’t be going better for him work wise.

I have taken a demotion at work which has enabled me to spend a lot less time working and more time with my girls. You don’t realize how much you work sometimes until all of a sudden you aren’t working as much anymore. There were days at first that I didn’t know what to do with myself when my time wasn’t filled with answering constant IMs and 12 hour work days chained to the computer. I have still been really busy at work, but the ability to turn it off for a few hours in the evenings and just focus on my family has been amazing.

Kalista is growing like a weed, and is such a different baby than when she was born! At 14 weeks she learned to sit up on her own, which is very early. At 6 months she still refuses to roll over, which is teetering on the edge of  late. It’s so funny how babies will decide, no matter what anyone else thinks, that they are going to do what THEY want to do. Damn the guidelines, forget the expectations, they will only do what they are good and interested in doing. I thought I was immune to the whole worrying about her not doing what other babies are doing thing since I am an experienced second time mom now, but apparently that doesn’t magically go away just because you get pregnant again. Whoda thunk it? Mompetitions with competimoms don’t interest me so I am choosing to focus on what is important to me. My amazing, chubby, animated, gorgeous little baby girl and all of the hilarious and entertaining things she does.

Nikaia has turned from my careful, cautious, contemplative toddler n00b into a daring, adventurous, bold toddler pro. She climbs EVERYTHING EVER. If she can get a leg, knee, or foot on it, she is on top of it before I can say no. We are working on learning new words with her (the newest being cookie) and focusing on letters and numbers. She won’t say any numbers yet, but when I say one she will put out one finger, two she will put out two fingers, etc. I am constantly amazed at the things that she picks up on, and what influences her. Her newest trick is to rub her head on people. After watching her do it a few times, we realized she learned it from the cats! It has got to be one of the cutest things I have ever seen. She is so sweet when she does it, turning her head to look at you and cooing the whole time. ❤

Once I get some pictures of the new house taken I will be sure to upload them to the blog. In the meantime here are the most recent pictures of the girls. =D

2 years, 2 pregnancies, 2 kids, 2 weeks

You know those moms who go on and on about how amazing their kids are…  how much they love being a parent…  how becoming a mom changed their lives…  describing all of the normal things their kids do like they are somehow new or unbelievable?  Those moms always drove me crazy.  I would find myself thinking, ‘No one cares that your son blew raspberries and spit all over himself, lady.‘ or ‘Kids are supposed to laugh, what makes your kids giggling fit so noteworthy?’  I wondered why they found these seemingly simple, mundane, completely expected things so earth shattering-ly awesome.

Today, I caught myself thinking the same thoughts I have been inwardly mocking them for saying out loud for years.  Sitting on the bed with my daughter, watching her rock back and forth making excited toddler noises, seeing her flash me a huge smile and say “hi” while she tried to wave at me but had her hand turned so she was really waving at herself…  I thought she was just the cutest, most fascinating, most unbelievable little being on the planet.  I was even crafting clever status updates in my head to post on FB describing her adorable acts of toddlerdom.  I looked at her and actually caught myself thinking, ‘She is the most beautiful thing on the planet. I can’t imagine a more gorgeous face.’   I actually thought those words!  Just typing that out is making me feel like the worst of the sappy moms to ever inhabit the planet, and the worst part…  I am PROUD of it.  Even as I sit here typing this right now I am realizing that I talk about how I have turned into one of these moms, a LOT, because I am so excited to be feeling what the sappy moms of the past feel instead of wondering what it feels like.  Parenting turns you into the mushiest love sick ball of goo, and apparently, into a hypocrite, too.  In this case, being a hypocrite is basically bad ass because in order to become one you get to experience having this little creature invade your life and take over, filling it with all of those sappy things that makes you cry from being so happy and junk.  Not a bad trade off.

That’s not all that  hit me, though…  In exactly two weeks from today (or less, depending on if Skeletor has the courage to attempt a jail break) I will have another child.  ANOTHER one.  I think back two years to when I never thought I would have ANY child and I mocked these proud parents who were just reveling in the day-to-day ooey gooey cuteness of their own kids and I am still in complete shock that two years later I have been through two pregnancies, and I am about to give birth to my second child only two weeks from today.

Today, two is my lucky number.

Having a Baby is a Competitive Sport

After I had Nikaia I let myself get sucked into that mom competition that goes on sometimes between mothers who have babies within a short period of time of each other. I would compare her to other babies around the same age, which is not only unhealthy, but completely unnecessary. I admit it though, I let myself get sucked in to the wanting my baby to do something first. I am convinced every mother does this at some point, if you say you never once thought that even for a second in your head, then I don’t believe you.

Now that Nikaia is getting older, and I am about to have baby #2, it is dawning on me the degree of stupidity that it takes to really go full on baby olympics with it. There are the moms who compare because they want to make sure there is nothing wrong with their baby. That is the category I fell into. I worried when Nikaia started crawling after kids who were younger than her, which I think is a natural thing to do. Of course, every mom wants their baby to be special so they look for something amazing and entertaining and just plain adorable that they can do (maybe even before another baby can do it, too), and while that feeling is normal, obsessing over it and constantly talking about it is not. When I started getting jealous of moms whose babies started popping teeth before Nikaia I realized that I was getting a little cuckooo bananas and needed to adjust my focus, so I did and I got the hell over myself.  It seems to me that there are moms who don’t catch themselves falling into this dangerous pattern and throw themselves fully into the baby comparisons and turn it into an organized sport. I am not just talking about comparing milestones, I am talking creating them from thin air to achieve that bloated sense of self worth that apparently comes from their tiny newborn writhing on the floor like an uncoordinated turtle on it’s back right in step with a song on the radio for 5 seconds straight. I am not exactly sure how to feel about this sort of thing when I watch it. Should I feel bad for them because they are obviously either 1) driving themselves crazy worrying about who else’s baby rolled over first, or 2) they are so delusional that they think their baby actually consciously made the decision to roll over at only 6 days old? Should I be worried because of the unrealistic expectations they could very well end up putting on those babies as they get older? Or, should I just sit back and laugh at the level of complete lunacy that the baby olympics rise to?

I will admit, it does make me just a little sad that these kids REAL milestones, their real intentional accomplishments, will most likely be overlooked in some kind of quest for the holy baby grail waiting for their kid to accidentally sign the word “alabaster” to them while they are trying to figure out how to get the Cheerio on their high chair tray successfully into their mouth.

P.S. Moms, if your child walks into a job interview in 18 years and proclaims that they are so advanced for their age that they were walking at 9 months old, or they poo-pooed in the potty before they turned 2, their interviewer is not going to be impressed and offer them a 6 figure salary and an expense account. They MIGHT, however, think they are super creepy and pretend that the position has already been filled.

Dear Nikaia,

The first thing that I want to tell you is that I love you. Because you were born into the family you were, you will hear these words a lot. Your dad and I will tell you, your sibling(s) will tell you, your aunts and uncles and cousins and all of your extended family will tell you. I am sure your friends will tell you. I want to make sure that you know what those words mean coming from me. I have never loved anyone or anything as much as I love you. Your unexpected arrival into my life changed it in more ways than I can count, every single one of them amazing positive changes that I wouldn’t trade for anything. I wanted you for so long, and finally having you is the highlight of my whole life. It changed everything. My love for you, as your mother, is stronger than any other love in the whole world. If I could take every ounce of pain, every tear, every discomfort, and replace it all with all of the love, happiness, and joy in the world I would do whatever it took to make that happen.

There are so many things I hope for you. So many things I wish I could give to you and guarantee you have in your life. More than anything, I want you to be happy. Truly, fully, overwhelmingly happy. I want every trial and tribulation you encounter in life to make you a stronger person. I want you to find a purpose in life that brings you fulfillment. I want you to know what it is like to truly love someone as a partner in this life, and to be loved in return. I want you to feel the love I have, as a mother, for you with your own children. I want you to feel the reward of helping others and giving selflessly. I want you to feel the accomplishment that comes from getting up after you have been knocked down. I want you to know what it feels like to turn something negative in your life into a life lesson and become a better person as a result. I would never wish pain on you, and if I could take every ounce of pain in your life away from you I would in a heart beat, but since I can not do that I want those painful experiences to bring you strength and show you what an amazing person you are. I want you to recognize what a beautiful, valuable person you are, inside and out, and for you to be able to recognize that same beauty and value in others.

Right now you are only 8 months old, but you are an amazing little creature. It’s hard to describe how it feels to watch this teeny little person you gave birth to slowly grow and change right before your eyes. Sometimes I can’t believe that you are ours, that we get to experience this life with you every single day. Other times I feel like you have been here all along, we just hadn’t met you yet. You fit into our family like we were made just for you and without you we would be different people. Watching you grow has been, and always will be, one of the most important and profound experiences of my life. The first time you said “Mama”, the first time you clapped, the first time you held your own bottle, the first time you giggled, the first time you pulled yourself up… These moments are the moments that have brought me so much joy that I literally felt like I could not contain it. I never would have guessed that you babbling at me and touching my face would be one of the most special experiences in my life, but it is.

As we bring a new little life into this family, a little brother or sister, I can’t help but reflect on how amazing YOU are. I will always love you for exactly who you are, whoever you choose to become. You have the very best of me, and always will.

I love you. Forever.

Mom

Procrastination!

I have been trying to gather my thoughts for a few weeks and figure out what I want to write about and it hit me today that unless I just open this thing up and start writing, I will never actually update. I know, I know, slow on the uptake…

So, here I am. A lot of thoughts have been swirling around lately, about pregnancy, kids, family, careers, life goals… Most of all I have decided that I need to change the direction of my life so that my kids will have better lives. I know, DUH TRINA. Doesn’t everyone want that? Figuring out HOW to do that is where the problems start.

There are a few things that I KNOW. One, I am not as financially responsible as I should be. While we aren’t incurring any new debt, and we do pay down some of our old debt, I don’t have a working budget that I stick to and we aren’t saving any money. While we aren’t being stupid, plenty of people live “paycheck to paycheck” and to do so without digging a bigger hole is good, we aren’t being SMART either. I don’t want to work until I die to afford my bills. I don’t want to tell my kids “Sorry, no college fund, we can’t help you”. I don’t want to have to scramble every time the car needs a repair. So, we need to get our financial house in order. I look back on our financial decisions when we first got married almost 10 years ago, and thinking through the years I can pinpoint multiple places where if we had just done this, or saved that, or changed the other thing we would be so much better off right now. I don’t want to look back in ANOTHER 10 years and view it the same way, except with a whole new decade of regret added on.

Two, I really want to focus on what kind of family we want to be. Now that our family is drastically changed, and continuing to change with the addition of another baby being born next year, I find myself thinking a lot about the traditions my family had growing up and what I want to do for my own kids. Some things will be different. For example, we don’t celebrate Christmas, so any Christmas traditions I want to carry on will have to be altered to fit Yule instead (although we will still attend family events for Christmas with our families, just not celebrate it in our own house). I remember having family dinner at the table every night with my grandparents. I remember taking vacations together, mainly to Disneyland. I remember how we did chores, the ages we were allowed privileges, bedtimes, rules for sleepovers… so many different traditions and rules in my house growing up that I am going to have to establish for my own kids now. As a child I accepted the way my grandparents ran the house as the way it was but I never understood WHY they did things the way they did. As a parent I realize now that it wasn’t arbitrary or accidental, my grandparents really thought about each rule and every tradition and what those things meant for us. Now I find myself weighing pros and cons to all kinds of decisions, wondering what message it will send to my kids, what things I am willing to bend on and what I feel strongly about sticking to no matter what, and how I will set different standards for each child based on what works best for THEM when I need to without making them feel like I am playing favorites. Being faced with the realization that I now have to make all of these choices for my own kids really gives me a new appreciation for my grandparents! What amazing, amazing people.

Three, pregnancy for me the second time around is a COMPLETELY different experience, one I should stop over analyzing and just enjoy for what it is. Being almost 22 weeks pregnant with child #2, pregnancy and having another baby is something that is almost constantly on my mind. Not only the health of my baby and how to prepare for their arrival, but how drastically different this pregnancy is from my last. I was exactly this pregnant (-1 day) at exactly this time last year, but how I feel about pregnancy and my reaction to expecting another baby are as different as night and day. I am ecstatic to bring another life into my family. Physically my pregnancy doesn’t feel any different from my first. A few things are different, but the symptoms are the same at about the same time. The difference lies in how I feel about being pregnant. Last pregnancy I stayed in a constant state of awe and disbelief the entire time, while this time being pregnant feels completely normal and natural. I am not anxious about every little ache, pain, cramp or twinge. I don’t check for blood on the toilet paper every time I pee. I don’t jump and go gaga over every kick to the gut. Being so calm and accepting and pregnancy feeling so ordinary to me worried me at first. I thought maybe it meant I wasn’t excited for this baby, or that I wouldn’t love it or be in as much awe over it as I was with Nikaia. This time I don’t have the giddiness I did last pregnancy, but I have left all of the stress and anxiety and overwhelming worry behind as well. That’s not to say I don’t have crazy overemotional pregnant rampages once in a while on one of my more hormonal days, but they aren’t about the baby this time. =P I struggle with this, and I know I shouldn’t, but I do.

Anyway, that is my rambling for today. I need to make a better effort to post more often so that every entry isn’t a big senseless word vomit of my thoughts for the last two months and actually has some kind of point to it. Maybe I should post more about how I don’t know what to post about and I am putting off posting. =D

3 months old!!

Nikaia is three months old today! Hard to believe she is already three months, and only three months! Feels like she has been around all along, but it feels like I just had her yesterday, all at the same time!

I bought an ADORABLE little outfit for her yesterday that I plan to take some pics of her in later. ❤ Hopefully I won’t get too busy to fit it in today!

Happy 3 month birth-a-versary baby girl!