Friday, August 29, 2014

The Daily Grind

I need a project. I think I'm going to start editing/revising/rewriting my novel from NaNoWriMo last November. I just need something to occupy my mind besides the daily grind. Don't get me wrong--I love having the opportunity to be home with Zuzu and Coco but it can be tedious and exhausting and it takes so much effort and then at the end of the day I have nothing to show for it except (sometimes) a reasonably tidy house and a load of folded laundry. My personality requires engaging long- or short-term projects with visible results to keep me happy. And I'm not quite ready to paint the dining room yet. Once Coco establishes a more predictable routine, I'm totally going to tackle it.

# # #

I feel really stinky. After a ridiculously nice summer (for which I am very grateful, since I was carrying an extra 40 pounds for most of it), St. Louis remembered what August is supposed to feel like and it has been so humid and so hot this week. Heat index was 109 on Monday! Ridiculous. So we are kind of stuck in the AC, but even the basic tasks of taking Zuzu to daycare and getting home is enough to give me boob sweat (Seriously, milk supply, chill the eff out already! I did not have quadruplets!). I have heard other people say that postpartum hormones make them stinkier than usual, and I think I'm totally there. Plus I was trying natural deodorant while breastfeeding except, NO. I was so foul smelling it was really terrible. I kept thinking that even Coco would be repulsed rather than comforted by my scent.

And now I want to take a shower, except I know the moment I step under the water, both girls will be awake, Coco will be crying, and Zuzu will be shouting, "Mama! Coco cwying! Why Coco cwying, Mama?" (and will repeat those phrases into infinity until I address the issue).

So instead I'll just stay stinky until David gets home. Happy Day-After-Your-Birthday, honey!

# # #

Today I dropped the metal mixer attachment onto the tile floor in the kitchen and it made a super loud god-awful racket and scared the crap out of me and I reflexively exclaimed, "Holy crap!"

Guess who ran in the kitchen and yelled, "Holy crap!"

This little helper. Shown here licking said mixer attachment.

Yeah... So then I said, "Oh, my goodness!" which is our go-to phrase to express astonishment around here these days.

But she kept saying, "Holy crap!"

We'll see how long that lasts...

# # #

When Zuzu was a newborn and would wake up in the mornings, I'd nurse her in my bed and she'd usually drift off to sleep again. So I'd lie in bed next to her and read and watch her sleep and take pictures of her and basically lounge around until she woke up or I got hungry. It was awesome, and I was kind of sad that Coco and I wouldn't have those lazy mornings together, since I try to get out the door to take Zuzu to school by 8:30am on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and she's usually demanding breakfast the moment she's awake (which is almost always around 7am) any day of the week (so each morning I face the Mother's Dilemma: Feed my child breakfast, or buy myself 30 minutes of dozing off with an episode of Curious George?).

But this morning? Zuzu came in my bedroom and went back to sleep in my bed. Coco woke up and I nursed her in bed and she also went back to sleep. I lay quietly next to them, marveling at my good fortune and taking pictures of my sleeping babies and Zuzu slept until 8:30am! It might be the only morning I get like that, but it was a really good one.

# # #

I asked David to take a picture of me with the girls last night and he took it from the worst possible angle ever and it was incredibly unflattering and I know that I'm only 3 weeks postpartum but the photo was pretty horrifying and when I expressed my dissatisfaction about the picture, David got all bent out of shape because for some reason he takes it personally when I suggest in any way that he is not a stellar photographer even though he has no interest in photography or photographic composition, so it's not like he's trying to be good at it (although I wish he WOULD try). So then he got all snippy with me about it when really I just was feeling sorry for myself and while I DO think he could have taken a more flattering photo if he put a modicum of effort into it, I was not trying to insult his cell phone photo skills.

(Can you tell we are both kind of tired?)

So then I did what anyone would do who is feeling tired and cranky and unattractive.

I had cookie cake and a beer for dinner.

I actually felt much better after the beer.

# # #

We've done the toddler bed transition with Zuzu. Her nighttime routine has been a battle since her birthday. Really, it's been a battle since she and I visited my parents in mid-June.

Gone are the days when we'd bathe, read, rock, and drop her in the crib at 7:30 with a kiss good-night, knowing we wouldn't hear a peep out of her until 7:30 the next morning. (Oh, how I miss those days!) Instead we've had bedtime battles (seriously, one night she was up until 10 o'clock!) and climbing out of the crib and one of us would have to sit in there with her until she fell asleep (super fun way to spend the evening) and often we'd have to call in the other person for reinforcements because, frankly, a two-year-old who is cackling with delight at being awake when she is SUPPOSED to have been asleep hours ago, makes me kind of irrationally ragey, especially in the weeks when I was Very Uncomfortably Pregnant.

At one point we turned her crib into a toddler bed and that was such a disaster that we converted it back into a crib. She was still climbing out of it in the mornings, but at least it kept her relatively contained at bedtime.

But finally we bit the bullet and transitioned over the weekend. The first night was crappy, the second night was easy, the third night was somewhere in the middle...  We've promised ourselves we will give it a week. Nap time today was not easy--I had to sit in there with her until she fell asleep, but I just brought my phone and read so I didn't feel ragey. Of course, it was easier since Coco was sleeping--if she had been fussy, then it would be a different story. But for today, getting her to nap at all felt like a victory!

# # #

We STILL do not have the results of Coco's blood test. I called yesterday afternoon and asked about it. The nurse said she'd check and call me back, but warned me "It takes a good week to get results back."

I said, very evenly, "Well this test was done a week ago yesterday."

But the results said "Still in progress."

She called me back this morning and said the computer says the same thing. She promised to check before she left for the afternoon, so it's possible we could hear something before the weekend, but I'm not holding my breath.

# # #

I feel like this might go down in history as the most boring blog post ever. But what can I expect when I spent a whole day this week just nursing the baby and watching 19 Kids and Counting?

I guess I could go into detail about how my milk supply is so ridiculous that I am water boarding poor Coco when she first latches on... Or we could talk about my feelings on courtship, 19 Kids-style (I actually don't have super strong feelings about courtship, I mean they seem really happy, so who am I to judge? But I do wish some of these kids would go to college--they seem really smart and I'm not sure why higher formal education isn't a priority...).

So, yeah... when my boobs and the Duggars are the central focuses of a given day, it really makes me feel like I need to take on a project of some kind. If I only had the energy and attention span for one... Which means this post has come full circle and Imma gonna hit publish and return to the September edition of Elle and imagine what I might wear if I had money to spend on clothes and left the house to go somewhere besides daycare or Target and also had a waist.

# # #

Except I also want to say: the days might be long, but they are flying by. Life is tedious and delightful and messy and exhilerating and exhausting and boring and amazing. And right now, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Zuzu and I made a birthday cake for Daddy today (belated because he got so many desserts at work yesterday). I had to wear Coco in the Moby wrap because she was losing her mind at being put down. So the whole experience was the definition of messy and annoying and delightful. (And since she preferred the Moby wrap over the pack & play, I can only assume that Coco enjoys the smell if ineffectual deodorant + b.o.).


  1. That is the sweetest thing to have both girls in bed with you BOTH SLEEPING. What would have been out of this world..? If you some how managed to sleep too! (after taking a million adorable pictures of course).

    I'm the same way with Daniel and picture taking. I often tell him to use the phone screen or view finder as what the picture will turn out like. And that sounds so elementary... but when someone uses the phrase "well, how am I supposed to know what it's going to look like?!?!" all defensive like.. I kinda have to break it down like he's 5. 'If you don't think it looks good when you look through that little hole... then the picture wont look good either'. So frustrating, because he too has ZERO interest in taking good/better pictures, and yet gets really mad at me when I criticize his picture taking skills. So... I don't really have any great pictures of me and Theo, partly because I'm being vain and wish I looked 20lbs lighter in all the shots, but also because looking up my nose isn't flattering either.

    On the deodorant front: I used to use The Body Shop's all natural kind. They had several scents, but I used the one with the blue cap. It was the only thing that kinda didn't make me smell like a homeless person at the bus stop at the end of the day. But they discontinued it!!! I've tried TOMS, and no... JUST NO! I smell better sans deodorant! L'Occitane has one for ladies, and it REALLY works. It's kind of perfumey and strong and unfortunately gave me a really nagging headache all day... but I smelled great!! It was also 28$ per stick. But seriously, it works. I've used it once, and because of the headache, never again. It's the verbena (yellow packaging) scent. If you find it and like it, I'll send you mine. And BTW, it's nice to know there are other women out there with underarm stank issues. And yes, I think breastfeeding hormones make it worse.

    I think this post was super cute, and I loved reading it!

  2. My husband begged me to give up on natural deodorant after 2➕ years. I felt bad for the guy and gave in and I have to say it is nice to not feel embarrassed or apologetic for my stench. He said the combo of bo and spit up / old milk was just too much for him. Anyway hopefully someone suggests a natural one that actually works (but doesn't cost $28...eek).

  3. Not the most boring post ever. Highly relatable. I'm right there with you on the projects. I need an adult task, but then I always feel guilty about it because shouldn't I just be happy raising my two healthy, alive kids? But then why all my years of education and hard work? I have this debate endlessly.

    And why are husbands so bad with the photographs? Greg is actually a fantastic photographer, but I swear he only pulls out the camera when I have yet to shower. It's 8 a.m. and I'm just back from a jog. Sure, let's take some family photos! And he, too, gets upset if I say anything negative about the photos. Perhaps because he finds me beautiful under any circumstances? Yeah, we'll just go with that.

    Your babies are adorable!

  4. I don't know what cookie cake is, but some of that and a beer sounds freaking awesome! - H

  5. The girls sure are growing! I hope you get at least a couple of more mornings like that one.

    Speaking of 19 Kids... I read this the other day.

    I really want so much more for those girls than to just be baby factories like Michelle!

  6. What happened to your Adidas deodorant ?

    Next time we are together let's have cookie cake and beer.

    This was actually a really sweet blog and I hope you get another snuggly morning with the girls again soon.

  7. I was a consomate Duggar fan the first time I had cable but this time around I don't know what my deal is, however, just to make sure to make this post super depressing I'll go ahead and rant about when they lost their last pregnancy and tons of people WERE UP IN ARMS THAT THEY HAD A PICTURE OF THEIR STILL BABY IN THE FUNERAL PROGRAMS. For reals?! You're going to JUDGE how someone else GRIEVES their lost child?!!! I was really really mad about that.
    So yeah. I inexplicably feel bad the oldest Duggar girl isn't married yet. I bet spinsters exist in that....reality? Poor girl. Maybe SHE'LL go to college!!!

  8. Also. You have a toddler and anew born and you're looking for projects. Are you on meth or does time/energy levels work differently for the 2 of us?

  9. Lol. Love the daily grind posts. And the girls sleeping in bed, so sweet. Looking for a project is crazy talk.

  10. I loved this post! I have read it twice now before having a chance to respond.

    I personally love Now Solutions deoderant. It was recommended to me by the owner of Vesta Parenting Shop in my town and I love it. Here is a link for their website.

    It remains the only natural deoderant that does not leave me thinking of a barnyard at some point in the day.

    It does go on white so you need to rub it in a little but it works fantastic!

  11. Fo sho the post partum action made me the queen of funk. And I don't even sing. Har har, sorry. My youngest was born in May in SC... It was ugly and stinky. I'm going to look into that deodorant that Melissa suggests. Wonderfully relatable post!! Those girls are precious, giving you such a delicious morning! I wish you do many more of them. And there's hope... It's taken almost 14 years give or take but my husband HAS started taking better pictures. Even offering to take them apropos of nothing. ;)

  12. Aww love this whole post. The girls sleeping together is so cute :) Snuggly mornings really are the best. And anytime you get a few moments of mommy time/peace it's awesome!

    Isn't it incredible the things toddlers WILL pick up and repeat? Like did you hear the other 50 words I said? Nope just the only bad one huh? Lol!

    Cookie cake and beer? Sounds like a winner to me :)

  13. I rarely comment on your blog (but read often) but I did comment on the natural deodorant discussion looong ago reco-ing the Adidas deodorant. After having my daughter, it no longer works AT ALL! Huge $22 failure! There must be something about pregnancy that changes hormones and make us stink. Anyway, Weleda makes a natural citrus spray-pump deodorant that works surprisingly well and makes you smell like a tonic & lime.

  14. Hahaha love this post! I'm glad I'm not the only one that let a naughty word slip only to hear it parroted in the sweet voice of a toddler!

  15. Oh my god. Those pictures!! ZuZu is tots adorbs and the girls together? Priceless!