Wednesday, April 22, 2009

One of Life's Great Mysteries

OK, there are some things in life that you just can't explain. No matter how hard you try. I'm not talking about Stonehenge here. I'm talking about socks. You know what I mean. When you do laundry and find that lone sock, the one without a mate. Where in the hell do those socks go?

I have gone on search and rescue missions to no avail. I've searched high and low - under beds, behind the couch. Once, I even dismantled my dryer in hopes that a sock or two or twenty had somehow gotten sucked through the back. The only thing I gained through that little experiment was a big pile of lint a huge scratch on my leg from tripping over the various parts of dryer and landing on the lint trap. No socks.

I have a box full of the socks without matches. They come in all colors and styles, and no one in my family is immune. Even the kids have a collection of unmatched socks. The sad thing is that their feet will probably grow too big to fit in them by the time I find the matches.

My husband thinks we should throw out all of our socks - even the ones that are in a pair. He thinks we should all start fresh and buy one style of sock. His philosophy is that if we each have only one type of sock, there will always be a match. It seems like a good idea in theory, but I just can't fathom such an outrageous thought. I mean, doesn't he know that a girl needs different socks? Fuzzy ones, colored ones, striped ones, ones with toes?

I can't even bring myself to throw out the ones in the mismatched box. I just keep thinking that someday I will prevail in this fight and find the long lost matches. Every now and then I do find a match, and let me tell you - that feels good. It's like a small victory each time.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sibling Bliss

Sophie was just about to turn two when we decided that we wanted to try for another baby. I thought it would be nice for my kids to be close in age so they would hopefully grow up as friends. A few weeks after we started trying I took the pregnancy test, and lo and behold I was pregnant! Maybe it was the hormones or maybe it was the fact that it happened so fast, but I was suddenly wondering if the timing was right. It might sound crazy (and looking back it was), but I kept thinking how unfair this would be for Sophie. She wouldn't be an only child anymore and what if I didn't have enough love to go around? (By the way, as everyone assured me - there is definitely enough love to go around!)

As my due date got closer, I was excited and apprehensive. What the heck had I been thinking? Things with Sophie had finally gotten easier. She was sleeping through the night, eating regular food and on the fast track to being potty trained. Now, here I was about to be up at all hours of the night nursing an infant and changing countless dirty diapers. I tried to be rational and think that in a couple of years this baby would also be sleeping through the night and out of diapers, but when nine months of pregnancy drag sooo slow it's hard to look so far ahead.

Finally my due date came - and went. I was still pregnant. Hmm. Sophie had been six days earlier so silly me thought for sure Aiden would also be early.. Maybe even earlier than Sophie, but this was not the case. My doctor decided to induce me on May 21. When he told me the date, I was surprised. Sophie's birthday is September 21 so it seemed like a fate, it was all meant to be. Both of my babies would be born on the 21 of their respective months. Well, fate almost pulled a cruel joke when my induction didn't progress and my doctor considered sending me home. I pretty much refused to even consider such a sick joke, and luckily for us all (but mostly the dr.) things worked out and Aiden arrived, healthy and beautiful.

I won't lie. The first few months were not easy, but we made it through. Sophie warmed up to her brother and fell into the role of "Big Sister" with ease. She wanted to help change him, bath him, hold him - you name it. Of course there were plenty of times when she asked me to "put the baby away", but for the most part she simply adores him.

Fast forward to today when out of the blue Sophie said, "Mommy, I'm so happy we got my baby brother from the hospital. I just love him." I swear, my heart melted and swelled with pride at the same time. She really loves him. Now, I'm not totally naive. I know there will be plenty of sibling rivalry moments and times when they are at war with each other, but so far so good.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Where Does a Year Go?

In a few short days my son will be eleven months old. Yes, that's right, my baby will be having his first birthday next month. What the heck? I could swear it was just yesterday I was hobbling around the house pregnant and miserable counting down the days until my due date. Of course, it seems like just yesterday when I was hugely pregnant and miserable with my daughter, and she's three and a half.

My kids are growing up and I have to say, it's going way too fast and I don't like it. No, I don't like it at all, but it doesn't seem there is anything I can do about it. I keep hoping maybe someone will invent a way to freeze time and we can all just continue in the here and now. My kids will stay young, sweet and innocent and I'll never have to let them go. Surely with all of the technology out there, this is possible?

Of course, at the same time I love watching my kids grow up and learn about the world. I love that Sophie is old enough to play Candy Land and it's so much fun to just sit back and watch her budding imagination while she runs around playing. Aiden is walking and babbling and so curious about everyday things. It's great to look at things through their eyes and see things as new and exciting.

I guess like any mother I just worry. I worry about all of the bad things in the world and how I can continue to protect my kids from all of the hate and violence out there. I know we can all just do the best we can. That's why I constantly tell them both how much I love them. I try to surround them with as much positive influence as possible and teach them to respect the Earth and each other.

The important thing is to just enjoy each day - even the crazy ones. This is what I try to tell myself when popsicles are dripping on the carpet or Aiden wakes up at 3:00 am screaming. Someday they'll both be older and I'll miss these days.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Blame It On The Groundhog

When you think about April what comes to mind? Flowers, the smell of fresh cut grass, the sound of children laughing while playing outside after being cooped up all winter. Unless of course, the kids are still cooped up because winter isn't over yet. Yes, that's right. It is a week into the month of April and it is still SNOWING.

In fact, last night as I was walking up the stairs to head to bed I glanced out the window. The snow was blowing sideways and it was a white-out. All of a sudden there was a huge clap of thunder and the sky lit up with lightning. OK, maybe I just didn't pay enough attention in meteorology class in high school, but is that even normal?

Mother Nature is completely confused. I'm well aware that Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow back in February, but isn't that supposed to bring on only six more weeks of winter? We're pushing nine weeks here and I must say that I don't know how much more I can handle.

It's so strange how as a kid you looked forward to the snow and would pray for a blizzard if it meant school would be canceled. Now as an adult the snow means shoveling the sidewalk, slipping on ice, clearing off your windshield, freezing your butt off and catching every cold and flu bug floating around.

Bring on spring!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

The Easter Bunny and Pirate Treasure

Wow, it's almost Easter. Wasn't it just Christmas? No worries. I've got the baskets and all the goodies ready to go. My only concern is what can I do to top last year.

Last year we visited Disney a few weeks before Easter and on that trip Sophie fell in love with Captain Jack. She decided that she would marry him because he was "cute and has lots of treasure and lots of candy." Her words, not mine - but I like the way she thinks! Well she was lucky enough to meet her future husband and from then on it was all pirates all the time.


This is how I got the idea to create a treasure hunt for Easter morning. Levi made a treasure chest and I made a treasure map. I really got into the whole charade. I even aged the paper with coffee grounds and tea before drawing a map that would lead Sophie through the house to her treasure on Easter morning.

When Sophie woke up, we told her that pirates had captured her Easter basket and left her a treasure map in its place. Much to my delight, she was on board!
We followed her around the house as she followed the clues and gathered gold wrapped chocolate coins. Finally she found the site of the hidden treasure.



So, Princess Sophie saved the day and rescued her Easter treasure from the pirates. She went on and on about that adventure all day and still has the treasure chest in her bedroom.

Some might say I go overboard, but kids are only young once!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

A Work in Progress

OK, I'm back with a list full of great blog ideas and a new blog name - A Work in Progress. Why the new name? Well, let's be honest. My old blog name was not very creative. I mean, I can't believe I couldn't come up with something a little more interesting than "Amber's Blog". So I spent a few days racking my brain and trying to think of a new name. I wanted to keep it short and simple so I finally settled on "A Work in Progress".

Thomas Edison said "Show me a thoroughly satisfied man and I will show you a failure." I came across this quote a few days ago and it really got me thinking. Aren't we all constantly striving for more? Wanting to be better tomorrow than we are today? I guess that some days I am content to just be, but I'm trying to make an effort to never get stuck in my comfort zone. I want to be the best I can be for myself, my family and friends and for my children.

Hence the new blog name. This blog is most definitely a work in progress. I certainly intend to post more often. I've got a lot of great ideas for posts that I hope you'll all enjoy in the near future!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My Journey to The Moms Panel - Part 2

Ok, yesterday I left off with the phone interview, so I'll pick up there.

Waiting for the decision was so nerve wracking. After I knew that all of the interviews were over, it was just a matter of time. I was cautiously optimistic, but I still kept telling myself that I probably didn't make it and I should just be proud of how far I had come. All of the people who moved on to the third round had to do a background check. When I sent my forms back, I worried that I hadn't filled everything out or that I had forgotten to sign - even though I checked a million times before sealing the envelope! I was also replaying the interview in my head, thinking of things I could have or should have said. Basically, it was torture!!!

Then, on election day I received an e-mail that they would be contacting everyone the following day with the results - good or bad. Talk about being stressed out! I sat up watching the election results roll in, but my mind was consumed with what my fate would be the next day. That night I hardly slept as I thought about the possibilities.

The next day I carried my cell phone with me everywhere. I didn't dare risk missing this call! Finally at around 2:30 or so, my phone rang. I seriously almost passed out! I answered the call and braced myself for what I was sure was going to be bad news. When everyone on the other end of the phone yelled "Congratulations!!", tears immediately popped into my eyes. My hands were shaking and I just started crying like a baby. I think I even asked if they were kidding me, lol! I could not believe it. Actually, sometimes I still can't believe it. I was chosen to be a panelist on the Disney World Moms Panel in 2009!

I called my mom and husband with the good news and floated around my house like I was on a cloud for the rest of the day. The only bad thing was reading the posts on the DIS boards from all of the people who weren't chosen. I almost hated to write about my good news and how excited I was because I knew how disappointed others were. Luckily, everyone really seemed supportive and happy for those of us who had made it onto the panel. It was so great to share the anticipation with everyone there.

It's hard to believe that I got that phone call about a month ago. Back then it seemed like the training trip would never come, but here it is - the day after tomorrow. I am so excited to meet all of my new friends who I've been talking with these past few weeks on facebook. It has definitely made the time go by quickly and I am so eager to meet these wonderful people who I already feel as if I know.

Anna, Diane, Diane, Jo, Joanne, Jennifer, Doug, Cathy, Karen, Margaret, Kay, Jodi, Whitney, Jackie and Tanya - can't wait to meet you all in person! See you REALLY soon!!!