Three weeks and counting until Cade emerges from his dark, warm cave and joins the real world.  C-section is scheduled for May 24th.  Send lots of gifts and flowers!  Diapers and wipes would be even better than flowers!  Better yet, volunteer to come over and clean my house!  Hahahahaha!  Although I probably won’t let you in because it’s too messy and I’d be embarrassed.  

I’m a registered Democrat. Voted Republican in the last presidential race. Vote, really, for whichever candidate I believe to be most qualified. So, I don’t really believe that I’m “defending” the Gore’s, but I am a bit miffed at the whole “energy” issue being raised.
When I watched the news last night, Gore’s electric and gas bills were compared to the “average family’s”. Somewhere in the story, it was mentioned that the Gore’s live in a home worth $3 million. I consider my family somewhat average (although definitely not NORMAL). I believe it is fair to say that my home is nowhere in the range of the Gore’s. My highest electric bill has been $250.00. Al’s was just under $1800. My home is 1800 square feet. Al’s is 10,000.
My husband argued with me this evening that the issue is not the amount of his bills, but the money wasted to provide energy to his extravagant home. So, are we now telling people what size home they can build in order to conserve energy? Where does it stop. I attended attended a birthday party over the weekend with my daughter. The discussion of taxes, electric costs, etc. arose. Basically, I found out that living her in Tennessee is quite a bargain compared to some metropolitan cities.
I’m thinking we need to put things in perspective. I don’t want to believe that when I become rich and famous, or just rich, that I will be criticized because of the size of home that I live in…it’ll be really big…with an indoor pool…and media room…and maids…SORRY, I got off track. This is the Gore’s home. Evidently they have taken steps to make their home more environmentally friendly. I would really like to see a comparison of their home’s energy costs and homes similar in size. The Gore’s support the practice of being environmentally aware. I just don’t think that should mean they have to live in a box with no modern conveniences. Are they paying the bills? Then let there be light!!!

I began this blog to voice my opinions in the most diplomatic way as possible, and hopefully make a few “friends” along the way. Right now, however, diplomacy and friendliness are the last things on my mind. I just need to BITCH!!!
As a couple of you have noticed (and thank you for your concern!), I haven’t been “present” in the blogging world for the past week. Instead I have been working very hard to keep my composure and refrain from making my kid a front page headline… “Child Dies After Butting Heads with Parent”.
My baby turns 6 tomorrow!!! She is by far the smartest, wittiest, and caring 6 year old I have ever known. Really! She is also the most difficult, hardheaded, and uncaring 6 year old I’ve ever known. She was the perfect angel til the age of 2. We never even had to tell her “no”, so the issues associated with discipline and punishment never really haunted us, as it did so many other parents. Two to three was wonderful. We just didn’t experience those “terrible twos”.
THEN SHE TURNED THREE!!!! And she’s still alive and well! And I haven’t done anything that I could be put in prison for. And I pray every day that I won’t! Emma has sleep issues and major rage issues. We saw a behavior therapist at 4 who told Emma to “picture purple ballerinas and take deep breaths when she got angry”. I wasn’t sure whether she should do that before or after she was throwing books and shoes at me while I was driving down the road…neither was Emma. Then, we went to a well-known hospital here in Nashville to see a psychologist who suggested a behavior chart.
I explained to this person that although I certainly do not claim to know it all, I do have a degree in Child Development. I thought I explained to him that if a behavior chart had worked, we could have solved this ourselves. He informed me that our charts weren’t colorful enough, the rewards weren’t sufficient enough, and we’re just idiots. Okay he didn’t say that, but PLEASE!!! So $650.00 later we’re still in the same boat. She has wonderful days, then she has horrible days. Unfortunately, we never really have any so-so days. So, when she’s off at 8 in the morning, we prepare ourselves for a day of HELL! And when she’s on at 8 in the morning, we prepare ourselves that she’s likely to snap at any time (but hopefully she won’t).
So, I picked her up last Thursday from school, and we journeyed to Wal-Mart (it should be noted here that we make a conscious effort to keep her out of public situations as she tends to “snap” in these situations). I took her to pick out swim shoes so she could go swimming in the indoor pool at the hotel…the one that Patrick’s mom spent a great deal of $$$ getting for us this past weekend just so Emma could swim for her birthday. We had a cart ready to go. We were headed to Target because Walmart didn’t have any girl swim shoes in stock. Then she saw a hat she wanted. I said no. THE END. NO…Just the beginning. I sat in that store in the rug isle for 2 hours because I literally could not overpower my child to get her to the car. She scratched me, she pushed me, she kicked me, and she screamed like someone was pulling her toenails out one by one…because I would no longer buy the pink rug for her room. I finally got her home, where she cozied up to Daddy all night. BLAH!!! Friday evening she went nuts because of dinner…she doesn’t like my meatloaf, or anything I cook! We offered her cereal…she doesn’t like our spoons. And so on, and so on. This weekend in Alabama was insane. She whined the entire time because she could not go swimming in the outdoor pool. Yep…the OUTDOOR pool. Yes, it was open. No, it was not heated. Yes it was less than 20 degrees there on Saturday night. That didn’t matter. We said no. She went nuts!
Adding to the stress of the matter were the two children under 3 that closed the indoor pool for a total of about 16 hours while we were there. One vomited in the pool, the other pooped. And the parents were both out of the pool not paying a bit of attention at the time. Hey, accidents happen. But thank God those little girls didn’t drown. Their parents would have noticed about 10 minutes too late.
We got home yesterday, went to dinner, and had a good night. But Emma couldn’t get to sleep. She finally went down about 10:30. I dropped her off crying this morning, where one of the awesome EA’s walked her in talking to her. The EA later told me Emma said, “I feel gross, I don’t feel like doing anything, I don’t want to be here”. At least the kid’s honest. This afternoon went very well. On the way to the bakery to pick up cookies for school tomorrow, she asked me if Patrick was still going to take her out for her birthday tomorrow evening. When I said yes, she responded, “Do you have to go?” I told her I’d stay home, but she said, “I guess it should be a family thing, so you need to go!”
So, it’s fair to say I’m soooo tired. I’m hoping for a great birthday for her tomorrow. She tries really hard and has a very hard time understanding why she does the things she does. I have so many hopes and dreams for her, but first and foremost, I want her to be happy.

I never have understood the concept of Valentines Day.  I mean, I get the whole St. Valentine thing and all, but I just can’t give into the holiday.  I had lunch with a friend today, where I overheard a few ladies talking about what they’d be receiving for the “big day”.  A couple commented on how they used to get flowers, but now all they get is a card and taken to dinner.  One said that her husband would cook her dinner, but she’s sure he’d burn it.  I smiled, as I complimented myself on not giving into the hype of the occasion. 

I have this strange belief that we should celebrate those we love everyday.  I’d much rather receive 6 bouquets of flowers spontaneously  during the year than threaten Patrick with his life it I don’t get those $120.00 roses on February 14.  Well, maybe I don’t get the flowers.  But my husband came home one day this summer out of the blue with the digital camera I’d been wanting.  No occasion…just because he was thinking of me.  He has asked me everyday since we found out I was pregnant how I feel…usually multiple times.  And today, on my way home from the doctor, he called to check in.  “Where are you,” he asked. “I’m about 4 miles behind you on I-24.  You should slow down and wait on me.” I replied.  We talked for a while, then decided that  I probably wouldn’t be able to catch up with him.  “See you later.  I love you!”, we both said.   Five minutes later I pulled up to my house where my husband had stopped on his way to a job to “see me and give me a kiss”. 

Those are my Valentine moments.  I despise the fact that there are those relationships whose relationships depend on the price and size of the gift.  My advice…If it matters that much, just go ahead and get out. 

For us, Valentines will consist of the following

– hanging out with our daughter before school talking about how fun Valentines day is

– Patrick will go to work and call several times just to say hello

– I’ll have lunch with Emma at school, then help with her party

– We’ll get home and make cupcakes for Daddy for a special Valentines party

– We’ll have dinner, give Emma a couple little goodies, and put her in bed

– Patrick and I will relax on the couch and watch Criminal Minds and CSI New York…if we can stay awake!

Call me boring, but THOSE are my Valentine moments.  Because all of the above make me feel completely loved. 

I wish all of you wonderful Valentine moments…everyday!!!

We spent this weekend clearing out our guest room to “make room for baby”. I find myself so much more ready this go around. I feel really good, and I love the newborn stage, so I’m good to go…except for this one thing that keeps haunting me.
(Deep Breath Everyone) BREASTFEEDING…I managed it for 10 days with my daughter (hated every minute of it), but up until about a week ago, I’d made the decision to definitely try again. But as the time gets closer, I’m torn.
So, I’m trying to make a pros and cons list…and feel free to interject your personal opinions as EVERYONE seems to be doing lately!

Pros:
Cheap
Healthier for baby (in several ways, I know)
Convenient (As long as we have baby and breast, we’re good!)

Cons:
Baby doesn’t sleep as long between feedings
Feel like I’m suffocating baby with my extremely large and very full udders
Inconvenient (Not comfy at all with pulling these things out in front of ANYONE)
Cry when I think about it

So you see the dilemma?
I really just don’t feel like it’s for me, but my reasons are so…unmotherly! I will say, though, that I honestly don’t feel like any of Emma’s craziness was caused by the formula she injested as an infant. I’m pretty sure it’s genetic…my husband’s side, of course! I guess it’s just hard to admit to myself that I’m not one of those people who feels a bond by breastfeeding. I guess if that’s the worst “mistake” I make as a mom, I’m doing good!

I feel great respect for those mothers who do decide to make the choice in favor of breastfeeding. It takes a lot of time and patience to do it successfully. Congrats to all of you! I, on the other hand, believe that I’m a better parent when I can sleep for over 2 hours at a time!

As of yesterday evening, I was pretty convinced that I was going to leave my daughter on the school sidewalk until it opened again. She reminded me that I could get arrested for that, and plus, it could snow again! And what do you know…school’s closed again today!!!!

Let’s back up…yesterday started at 7:30am with “Mommy…when are we going to play in the snow?” Then at 7:35, then at 7:40…until about 9am when I finally gave in, realizing that if I waited any longer the snow would be gone!!! So, about 5 minutes later, when the snow was gone, we went back inside where the rest of the day was spent “arguing and bargaining” with my 6 year old about cleaning her room. Literally…the rest of the day. Until about 5:30. That’s when it happened…the inevitable…the dreaded moment every mother fears. My precious baby girl, who had Shirley Temple curls up until about the age of 4, came downstairs holding her head. “Mommy, I have a headache”. “Mommy, I was cutting my paper and the scissors slipped, and I accidentally cut a little piece of my hair”. For the next 5 minutes, she kept her hand on her head talking about the “accident”. Then I noticed that the “accident” had spread all over the top of her head. My daughter, whose hair had been mostly the same length about 40 minutes ago, now had 1 inch bangs, which stuck straight up from her head in all directions. Then she showed me the “headache” side. The one inch gash of hair missing from her head!!! She began crying and talking about how she could never go to school looking like this!!!

When my husband returned home from work she refused to take her hand off of her “headache”. We explained that she’d just look more like her Daddy (who shaves his head), and that the hair would grow back. She started bawling, “I can’t end up looking like Daddy”!!! By 8, the hysteria was over and my beautiful baby girl was asleep. She would sleep well and be perfectly rested for a pleasant day of school today!

6:15am Friday…The alarm rings…I turn the television on to check the temperature…WHAT!!! SNOW!!! All of middle Tennessee schools are CLOSED? What will we do? So by 9:30Am, I call my good friend Kathy T. to catch my sanity…Yes, she’d love to get our kids together this afternoon! Yipee! We’ll bring the scissors!

So we meet for lunch, where I automatically feel a sense of relief when I see the look on my good friend’s face. It was the same look I’d just seen in my visor mirror. Yep…her kids are about to end up on the school sidewalk. I am not alone! We proceeded to have our seats and eat, where my daughter put on her perfect princess identity, and Kathy’s girls began the “begging and bargaining”. I am not alone!!!

So here I am, sitting at Kathy’s kitchen table, where we have been almost completely undisturbed for approximately 3 hours. We have checked on the girls…they are all still alive. We are still talking about how obnoxious they are. We are still complaining that their rooms never get cleaned. We are hoping that it’s 70 degrees and sunny on Monday. We are not alone. And aren’t they precious?

Perfect Ice Cream

The perfect way to spend a snow day…this is happiness!

Emma

My beautiful baby…short bangs and all!

Melissa and Emma

Aren’t they precious?

Mandi

My first post. I’m not so precious.

I have never written a blog post until now. Actually right now, I’m not writing either. My arm and all my fingers are broken. Not really. My friend Kathy T. just types faster and she has hooked me on blogging. I’ve read hers for several months and have talked about starting one of my own. And since it’s a glorious snow day and our children were driving us crazy, we brought them together to drive EACH OTHER crazy so we could play here. I hear everyone is switching over to Word Press rather than Blogger, so that’s how she’s starting me. I have no idea what she just typed or what any of it means, but I’m sure I’ll understand someday. Okay. That’s my first post. Exciting, no?