Night-time in our house

I am frustrated to say the least. “J” has decided in the past month or so that night-time does not equal sleeping in his own bed. He can only sleep if he has mommy or daddy around. Yup, he will go to bed after his night-time wind-down routine and sleep contently in his own bed until 1-3AM. “J” will then wake up and will only fall back asleep if he is in my arms rocking him (but wakes back up when I leave his room), or if he is in our bed.

I spent an hour last night trying to get “J” back to sleep after he woke up at 1AM. He would fall asleep with the rocking chair, I would go back and as soon as my head would hit the pillow he was up crying again. After an hour of this, I decided just to let him into our bed cause it meant that I wouldn’t have to deal with a cranky toddler in the morning everyone would get sleep.

I know there is a point that this becomes a habit and we probably have already passed it. I just don’t know how to get “J” back to sleeping contently in his bed again. I am tired of the battle of crying in the middle of the night.

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Costumes

Mrs. Pastor and I were thinking of putting together a little costume party. Mostly geared to those families (ok more so moms) with small kids that are really too little to go trick-or-treating. Invite church members, fellow yoga mommies, and even maybe canvas the neighborhood around church. 

I didn’t get to dress up “J” last year because at a mere 10 months he really couldn’t do anything and we had just moved back so friends weren’t really there yet. But I am actually excited to dress up “J” and “E” if we go through with the costume party. I started looking online at the toddler costumes- and realized how expensive they can be for just one night. So I looked for costumes I could replicate with items that were either cheap or could be used in everyday life. Now we just have to decide…

Garden gnome? Mario brothers? pirate and parrot? lion? bear? tom cruise from risky business (super cute- just white diaper with white button up shirt, white socks, and black sunglasses)?

Protective

My husband is protective. Actually he is beyond protective. He likes the fact that I stay home with our little ones because then he knows who is watching them. Since “J” was born only three times has he been watched by someone outside of family. That is in 21 months only 3 times a non-family member has watched our son; and all of those 3 times were for a mere 1-2hours while I or “E” went to a doctor’s appointment.

While I understand the comfort in knowing and trusting the person watching you kids, I need a break sometimes. I need to be able to step away and just breath. Every mom knows that feeling.

I get to have a break at the end of this month. I told Husband that there is a concert that my sister invited me to go to, I want to go and the boys will be watched by my brother-in-law and his friend (who I have met multiple times and trust). I talked, prodded, explained, and re-explained that fact that the concert will be at night so all the sitters need to do is feed “J” dinner and put both boys to bed. The boys have a bedtime routine that is easily replicated. “E” sleeps through the night (no night-feedings) and “J” is just rocked, read a couple of books, and put down for the night. After an hour of explaining, husband finally agreed that I could go (not that I need permission but he is the boys’ father and therefore has equal right to voice his opinion of who watches the boys).

Why won’t you nap?

I tried asking “J” this today. He was content playing outside and running around with our dog- and didn’t show any signs of being the least bit tired. No rubbing eyes, no yawns, no crankiness. So I let him play..and play… and play.

It got to dinner time and… still no nap.

Then at about 6:30p as I am assembling “E”s crib, it hit. The crankiness, the eye rubbing, the yawns, the not listening/testing the limits, and worst of all the “if-I-don’t-get-my-way-I’ll-show-you” screams.

7p- the screams got worst. AND “E” starts scream crying because he has “J” screaming in his ears. Two screaming not-to-be-comforted kids. This mommy almost lost it.

7:05p- I mustered all the strength I had and got “J” into his pj’s, gave him his multi-vitamin, brushed his teeth (and saw yet another is coming in), started feeding “E” as I read “J” his book, put “E” down for the night in his bassinet, rocked “J”, and put “J” down for the night in his bed.

7:35p- I am exhausted!

Today was such a good day up until 6:30p. But in all of this, the good news is that tomorrow is a fresh day with hopefully everyone well-rested. Oh, and husband has the day off so I get help. =)

Tahoe..good, bad, and exhausting

We live about 3 hours from Lake Tahoe. It is a truly gorgeous lake. Husband wanted to get out-of-town on his day off so we decided to take a break up at Lake Tahoe. Here is the good the bad and the exhausting part of our break…

The Good: It was a great family day away from the house full of walks along the beach and paddle boat cruise.

We also had lunch with friends at a great restaurant called “Fire +Ice”. It is a cool restaurant where you get a bowl full of veggies, starches (pasta or rice), and protein (tofu, fish, chicken, etc) and a sauce of choice. It gets cooked on a big round platform. It is a good restaurant during the spring/summer/fall; but it is  AWESOME in the winter. This restaurant is at the base of the Nevada side Heavenly ski run so you can literally ski/snowboard down to it, order your warm food, and sit and eat it around the fire pits outside. Of course you can sit inside too.  It was just a good lunch with a good friend and his new wife (Congrats to the newly weds!! )- and the kids behaved themselves through the entire meal too.

The Bad: A strange hotel room for the kids to attempt to sleep in and a long drive for two little kids to endure (especially twice in a matter of 26hours)

The Exhausting: Long drive, naps during drive leading to not-tired kids at bed time, and two late nights leads to very exhausted mommy.

The cruise was in the good category except for trying to entertain a toddler on a two-hour paddle boat cruise. “J” was ready be done about half way through. He kept wanting to walk around on his own- but on a boat that just isn’t possible. To top that off- husband doesn’t like when kids get fussy or talk too loud or cry (because he thinks it interrupts other people’s experience) so he gets stressed out which makes me stressed out trying to quiet kids so I don’t have a stressed out husband on his day off.

All in all it was a good day. I am just not ready to do it again.

Meeting new mommies

At our church we have a new pastoral family who just moved here from the mid-west. They are a young couple with one young toddler and another one on the way. Mrs.Pastor is finding it hard to cope with California mommies. I will explain- California mommies tend to go to the park with their little ones and keep to themselves. This makes it hard to meet other mommies and form play groups or such. Being a California mommy, I have done this exact thing many many times. I have this fear that someone I don’t know will try to gain my trust and then take my beautiful kids from me. I know horrible but that is what runs through my head.

So Mrs. Pastor tried then to search for Mommy and Me classes or gymboree or stroller striders. She found that they were too expensive or too far away from our little agricultural valley.  The library holds story times but they tend to be geared towards older kids like 3yrs+.

We try to have play dates so our boys can interact and learn to share, but only two makes it hard. We are even talking about starting a group with the church, but are having a hard time figuring out when to plan to meet- morning (church rooms are full), afternoon (nap time for most young ones), or evening (accommodates more working moms but too late runs into dinner/bath/bed time).

Any ideas? When, what activities to do to include all different age levels, how to advertise to neighborhoods around us with minimal cost?

Toys multiply like bunnies

I have noticed that around our house the toys for the boys multiply…like bunnies. It seems like if I take my eyes of the toy corner even for a second,  when I look again there are more.

Now with three sets of grandparents, this isn’t surprising. However I have to clean up all of these toys- so multiplying isn’t exactly what I want. Back when “J” was a year old he had one small crate of toys, one small crate of books, and one toy walker. Now he still has both crates (now one is filled with just all the different  baseballs/footballs/etc. balls), but also a whole corner of our living room. Just to name a few: basketball hoop, mega blocks with wagon, pop up tunnel, mini chair, crate of stuffed animals, mini shopping cart, and (toy plastic) golf clubs.

I want my kids to understand the value of a dollar and not to be spoiled. I know my boys are still very young but I am already worried.