Posts Tagged ‘things I hate’

Dance Mom

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Caroline had her first ballet recital on Friday night. She’s taken 13 weeks of classes and she’s only three and half, which means about 75% of the performance was her staring into the wings to watch the teacher and 25% was her screaming the words to “Deep In The Heart Of Texas” with a giant, dramatic point at the audience for every “Texas!!!!!!!”

summer 2014 dance recital-8

summer 2014 dance recital-11

summer 2014 dance recital-13

That was pretty standard for the entire class, although there were a couple of girls who you can imagine on So You Think You Can Dance in 15 years (or whatever the 2030 equivalent is – So You Managed  To Not Let Technology and Common Core Ruin Your Life And Are Capable Of Expressing Emotion With Your Movement Directly Into Our Brains??). They’ll say things like “I’ve always loved being on the stage” and “I can just feel the music and connect with it naturally.”

Caroline will probably not be that girl. I mean, this is a really early prediction and far be it from me to crush her dreams in any way and if she wanted to spend the next decade in dance classes I will be NOTHING but supportive. But I do not thing dance is going to be her thing.

Dress rehearsal was…long. And a little stressful. The class is through a local town’s parks & rec department but the instructor REALLY wants the kids to do a good job so she can be capital-I Intense. There may have been some yelling because the 3 year olds didn’t have the laces on their ballet shoes tucked in. There was some public scolding about an improper hair clip. The teacher is basically a SAINT for dealing with. like, 100 kids whose parents don’t care enough to pay for fancy dance but want a recital anyway, but even saints lose their shit a little bit right before curtain.

By the end of rehearsal, when all Caroline had left to do was the Hokey Pokey with the rest of the little kid classes, she lost it. She was the kid – the only kid – who ran off stage crying that she wanted her mommy and didn’t like dance anymore. I left Evan to misbehave in the audience while I tried to coax Caroline back on stage.

When I say “coax”, I mean I tried every single thing I could think of that didn’t involve physically dragging her on stage and leaving her there. I told her she needed to be a big girl. I told her she could quit if she wanted to and we could go home. I told her she was being ridiculous. I promised her ice cream if she would JUST STOP freaking out. I told her everyone got scared before they went on stage and it was totally OK and I loved her no matter what. I told her dancing was FUN and she LOVED dancing and why didn’t she want to do some FUN DANCING on the stage?

I don’t really know what my parenting style might be called, but it is definitely not “consistent”. I have no idea what I am doing.

The next night, before the actual performance, she threw a fit again. I was supposed to drop her off with her class back stage but every time I tried to leave her eyes filled with tears. There was an incident with her hair bow (apparently it was on the wrong side and needed to be moved despite the fact that no one had EVER said ANYTHING about WHICH SIDE it needed to be on before WHATEVER I DON’T CARE) and she started crying again. I went back to comfort her (mistake!) and she started the clinging/crying/yet insisting she DID want to dance cycle all over.

I left. I sat in the audience with all my crossables crossed that she at least WENT on stage, even if she just stood there.

summer 2014 dance recital-18

summer 2014 dance recital-19

summer 2014 dance recital-21

summer 2014 dance recital-23

And she did great! Once she was out on the stage under the lights she performed and hammed it up and blew kisses. She loved the applause and the cheering and being the center of attention. She did both routines as perfectly as I could have hoped from a 3 year old. It was adorable.

summer 2014 dance recital-16

summer 2014 dance recital-25

summer 2014 dance recital-26

summer 2014 dance recital-27

But even though it ended well, I’m not sure how I feel about signing her for more classes. I don’t want to be the mom who pushes her kid to perform when she doesn’t want to. I didn’t like snapping at her not to mess up her hair or smush her skirt. I am embarrassed that I was embarrassed when she was upset and even though she knows I am SO proud of her I don’t want her to feel disappointed in herself if she messes up. I loved dance class when I was a kid but never really loved the recital part. To this day I have that nightmare where you show up backstage and realize you have NO idea how the routine goes.

I am probably (definitely) overthinking this. Caroline is 3. If she says she wants to take ballet again in the fall, she can take ballet again in the fall. If she DOESN’T want to do the recital next June, she doesn’t have to do the recital. I do not have to have a philosophical discussion with myself over Intro Ballet or Beginner Tap and whether or not I am turning into a crazy Dance Mom after ONE recital. If you ask Caroline right now if she liked performing she will say “YES!” and shout at you about the stars at night and their largeness and brightness. That’s really what matters. But I think I learned something about myself and my parenting I am not sure I’m totally sure I like what I learned.

Let’s ignore my poor parenting and just squee over how adorable my daughter is instead.

summer 2014 dance recital-29

Adorable cowgirl themed finale costume handmade by me…HAHAHAHAHA NO, I bought it on Etsy. I could have tried to find her some jeans and a bandanna but this was easier to do from the couch.

summer 2014 dance recital-30

summer 2014 dance recital-31

summer 2014 dance recital-33

summer 2014 dance recital-34

summer 2014 dance recital-38

summer 2014 dance recital-40

summer 2014 dance recital-41

summer 2014 dance recital-42

summer 2014 dance recital-43

summer 2014 dance recital-44

summer 2014 dance recital-46

summer 2014 dance recital-47

summer 2014 dance recital-49

 

Related posts:

Blogging
Picky isn't really a strong enough word
My Week(46) in iPhone Photos

Adventures In Kidney Stones: Sequels Are Never As Good As The Original

Friday, June 13th, 2014

On Wednesday, I wrote a hundred words of a boring, nothing-to-see-here baby update before I lay down on the couch with a pillow over my head and screamed swear words into it until I worked up the energy to go to the Emergency Room.

Pregnancy is fun.

Let’s start this extremely long and health-detail related story at the beginning! At my regular check-up on Tuesday, I mentioned to the OB I didn’t feel great. Nothing was HORRIBLE but I just didn’t feel well. I said I had a vague pain in my left kidney and with my history of stones it made me a little worried. She offered to send me up for an ultrasound, but I said I’d rather just do a test for an infection and see if it got any worse. I spent the rest of Tuesday doing nothing and went to bed early with a headache, but no other symptoms and no more pain.

Wednesday morning I woke up feeling totally fine. I made breakfast! I cleaned (a little)! I bought end-of-the-year teacher gifts for Caroline’s teachers! After school I got both kids to the dentist (where I lied straight to the hygienist’s face and told her I would try to only let Caroline snack once a day) and then we went to swim lessons. Right after I got both kids into their suits and turned them over to their instructor my left side started to hurt. It felt like I was being stabbed. Sitting comfortably in the pool chairs is hard when you’re pregnant, but sitting comfortably in a pool chair while you’re pregnant and being stabbed in the back is impossible.

I got up and paced. I sat down. I leaned forward. I leaned back. Half way through class Evan needed the potty, so I took him upstairs where I leaned against the wall and moaned. Being in pain discretely is hard – I didn’t want anyone to think I was in labor (I knew I was definitely not in labor) – but I managed to have several conversations where no one freaked out and asked if I was OK, so I think I pulled it off. “Why yes, we have greatly enjoyed swim lessons! No, no, I didn’t just lose consciousness for a second, I’m definitely paying attention to you!”

Because I had promised the kids Panera to celebrate the dentist AND the last day of swimming, we went to Panera. I’m guessing I ordered lunch and paid for it, since the cops didn’t show up at the house and the children look well-fed, but I don’t remember any of that either. We made it home. I ate a turkey sandwich but immediately threw it back up, which was when I realized I should probably call the OB.

The OB’s office suggested I just go to the ER to be evaluated, since they had an ultrasound machine and good drugs and could give them to me a lot faster than if I was admitted straight to L&D. I messaged a friend who said she could come over and watch the kids so I didn’t have to take them (THANK GOD) and made it to the hospital, which is luckily less than a mile away. The lady at the check-in desk took one look at me and paged four different people to come help. I got a bed and some water and a nice male nurse who I couldn’t pick out of a line up right now if my life depended on it because SERIOUSLY it hurt SO BAD I don’t remember anything.

I was expecting I’d have to live through a lot of poking and tests before they were willing to give me anything for the pain, but as soon as the ER doctor saw me he said I was crazy for not asking right away. I’ve seen enough medical dramas to know asking for morphine is a good way to get labeled a drug-seeker (Because TV is TOTALLY the same as real life!) and I didn’t want anyone to threaten to call CPS on me (I am not entirely rational when I’m in pain) so I resisted for about 20 seconds. Then it hurt so bad I threw up again and begged for drugs.

10 minutes after the first dose the nurse said “It’s amazing how fast Dilaudid works, isn’t it?” and I said “Are you $%&*ing kidding me?” It took three doses before I felt any better.  It also made me feel totally drunk and loopy and dizzy. I’m extremely surprised I never fell over. I did get rolled down to ultrasound where the tech said she could see stones in my kidneys (both of them, because why half-ass kidney stones?!) but couldn’t see a blockage where I was complaining about the pain. Surprisingly, never once did anyone say “I guess that means you’re OK! Go home!” They ran some more tests that said I had the beginnings of an infection and there was blood in my urine, so in addition to the narcotics I got pumped full of fluids and antibiotics.

At some point I messaged another friend (I didn’t have cell service in the ER but they do have free wifi!) who got a hold of my husband at work and told him I was in the ER. He showed up after the ultrasound but before they admitted me. It turns out extreme kidney pain, probably stones and elevated blood pressure (due ENTIRELY to the pain) at 35 weeks pregnant automatically gets you admitted.

I don’t remember the timeline for any of the rest of the night very well. I do know I couldn’t keep any water down so they gave me zofran (useless) then something for nausea through the IV. It took two more doses of Dilaudid and some heartburn medication but I finally, FINALLY, passed out at 2 am.

I spent all of Thursday lying in bed feeling better and waiting for the urologist to come check me before I lost patience and asked to go home. My nice OB agreed, since if I was feeling well enough to give up the IV drugs I was obviously OK. My kidneys on both sides still hurt a little, but not enough to waste a Percocet. The current plan is to wait out the pregnancy and see if the rest of the stones pass/clear on their own (we’re assuming the one that was stuck last night did)(they’re also assuming I had one, even if it didn’t show on the u/s)(because my doctors are nice and my history supports that theory). If I have more pain or any signs of an infection I have to go back in.

The whole thing is just a terrifying deja vu of what happened with Caroline, except I had NO IDEA what was causing my pain last time and it took almost a full DAY before anyone believed me enough to give me something. I’m going to be careful about drinking more (and then more and more and more) water and avoiding things that make my heartburn so bad I break down and take a Tums. I would also say I’m going to take it easy but there’s just no way. Maybe I’ll put off painting the nursery but I’ve been “putting off” literally every household chore for so long now I have to catch up.

I also missed Caroline’s last day of preschool yesterday. They didn’t do a graduation or a show or anything, so all I REALLY missed was dropping her off and picking her up one last time (and giving her teachers their gifts, which E assures me made it to school but were unfinished so weren’t quite Pinterest-worthy). But I didn’t get to take her last-day picture on her actual last day and I didn’t get to thank the school headmistress for taking care of my baby for the past 2 years. I’ve got 16 more last days before she leaves for college (OMG ONLY 16 MORE LAST DAYS) and hopefully I won’t be in the hospital for any of those.

Today is Evan’s kindergarten orientation where we both get to see his new school for the first time. It’s very Time Marches On, since Time obviously doesn’t care that I’m not READY for kindergarten yet and could he please just take an extended summer vacation for a few months so I can have this baby and recover and THEN I can think about sending my first baby to full time big-kid school. I CANNOT think about kidney stones anymore though, so I fingers crossed I don’t have to.

Related posts:

Green eggs and boob
Love Has Gone To My Head
Freeeeeeeeeee*

No One Puts Plus Size Maternity Photos On Pinterest

Monday, June 9th, 2014

While I was at Mom 2.0 at the beginning of May, I ended up in a bunch of photos. And since this is 2014, some of those photos ended up on Facebook. And because it’s Facebook, I ended up tagged, which meant all my friends – from my 4th grade classmates to the girl who lived on my floor in college to my mother’s second cousin who lives in Sweden – saw them.

I did not like it. They were not flattering. They were candid, and that is what I look like in candid photos, but they made me sad.

**insert literally 1000 words I wrote then deleted about how being fat sucks here**

You know what’s a huge waste of my time? Being sad about being fat while pregnant. I feel a compulsive need to mention my doctor is unconcerned – I don’t have high blood pressure or gestational diabetes or any other weight-related complications – so all my sadness is purely vanity-related right now.

I do a lot of maternity photo sessions and my clients are always GORGEOUS. Because that’s who wants maternity photos – people who look adorable even at 8 months pregnant. People who look like me spend 5 minutes on Pinterest and realize no lacy dress and oversized sun hat will ever change the size of their arms or shape of their face. But this is what I look like. This is what I look like right now while growing baby #3 and walking around in the world and there is nothing wrong with wanting photos of myself OR with showing those photos to other people.

It’s like that meme about how to get a bikini ready body: Buy a bikini, put it on your body. Done.

Here’s how to take plus size maternity photos. Be pregnant in front of a camera, get someone to press the shutter button. Done.

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus Size Maternity Photos

Plus Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

Plus Size Maternity Photos

Plus-Size Maternity Photos

I owe my husband a huge thanks for helping with these. He very patiently posed for all my pictures so I could adjust the manual camera settings and then I had to explain exactly what I wanted – “The sun should be shining behind us to make haze but not TOO much haze and don’t get the sun actually in the picture and try to get the focus point right on the kids and tell me if my bra is showing [it was ALWAYS showing] and does my arm look OK like this or should I hold it differently?” – and he did all of it standing in the buggy, snakey orchard without complaining. He doesn’t really understand WHY I wanted 400 photos of myself standing in an orchard, but he knew it was important so he helped. He’s a good guy.

Related posts:

Water Baby
I Could Have Been A Star
KinderStuff - Rethinking Baby Fashion {Giveaway!}

Five Is Not My Favorite

Thursday, May 1st, 2014
spring gingers-40

His hair looks lopsided because his hair is lopsided. He trimmed it himself.

Someone at Evan’s school taught him a good way to annoy people is to repeat everything they say. So now he can take anyone in the house from calm to BLIND MURDEROUS RAGE in approximately 6 sentences.

Me: Evan can you please put your shoes on?
Evan: Evan can you please put your shoes on?
Me: Ha ha very funny. Knock it off.
Evan: Ha ha very funny knock it off.
Me: STOP DOING THAT RIGHT NOW.
Evan: Stop doing that right now.
Me: I SWEAR TO GOD I WILL THROW EVERY ONE OF YOUR TOYS IN THE TRASH AND YOU WON’T EVEN SEE AN IPAD FOR A MONTH IF YOU DO THAT EVEN ONE MORE TIME YOUNG MAN.
Evan: I…ok Mommy!
*Skips off oblivious to how close he was to being left at a the fire house*

At least once a week when his bus driver pulls up she has The Look on her face and I mentally add $5 to her end-of-the-year Dunkin Donut gift card. This week he was mad he had to sit next to someone and spent the whole ride home trying to push him out of the seat. They were buckled together, which made the pushing useless, but lead to a fair amount of screaming. “Pre-k bus driver” might be the worst job in the world, but being the parent who is constantly apologizing for their kid’s horrible behavior sucks too.

The other day I asked Evan if he wanted a turkey sandwich for lunch. He said “No thank you”. I made one for Caroline and put everything away. Less than 5 minutes later he was practically climbing the walls, wailing about how he would DIE if he didn’t get a turkey sandwich right now. I’m not even sure what I’m SUPPOSED to do in that situation. It was lunch time, he was definitely hungry. A turkey sandwich is a reasonable lunch request. But he said no! And I told him if he said no he didn’t get another chance! So which is the more important part of parenting here: following through with what I said or feeding my hungry child?

I made him a turkey sandwich.

spring gingers-65

Five is basically the same as a teenager, but with way less impulse control and emotional maturity. He has SO MANY FEELINGS and deals with a lot of complicated social situations – friends and best friends and who can sit with who at school and whether or not they wear pink on Wednesdays – but for the very first time. It’s hard to even watch, it must be super hard to try to navigate as a little tiny person.

In the mornings, before he gets on the bus, we sit together on the front steps. Most mornings he still wants to sit on my quickly-disappearing-lap and snuggle a little, which is TOTALLY FINE with me. But it only takes one wrong question (Do you think you’ll have fruit for snack? Isn’t that flower a pretty color? Would you like your very own pony??) for him to go from cute and cuddly to the mayor of Grumpypants Town. I don’t even like driving through Grumpypants Town, let along socializing with its elected officials.

Luckily the times he’s not being impossible he’s amazing and super fun and likes me to play the radio loud in the car so we can both sing along badly. But five is not my favorite.

spring gingers-55

 

Related posts:

Soy is a Go
Learning To Stand In Line
DIY Giant Painted Silhouette Canvas

Slightly Christmasy

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

We have a family tradition of getting our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. It was something my family did, it was something E’s family did, and it’s something we’ve done throughout our marriage. This year Thanksgiving was late, and also fell in the middle of shift work for E, so he didn’t get the day off. Or the day after. I was a little bummed, but we planned to just get the tree in a few days when E could get a few hours off of work.

That never happened. He literally hasn’t had any time off – besides a few hours to sleep most (not even all) nights – since mid-November. If it was at any other job besides the military, his hours would probably be illegal. I know I’ve complained about how much he works before (probably a lot) but I’ve reached a point where I’m not sure how I’M going to get through it.

Right now the only thing I’m getting by on is making sure the kids are still enjoying Christmas. They are so excited about every single part of the holidays that it’s pretty easy for me to let myself get wrapped up in it too, although the fact that we’re missing 1/4th of our family is always in the back of my mind. My mom sent the kids an advent calendar and GOD FORBID I don’t remember to get it down so they can open the day’s door first thing in the morning. And amazingly, they’re keeping track of whose turn it is and remember better than I do. It’s teaching them sharing! And fairness! And that if you touch something covered in glitter it will stick on your body basically forever! Those are all very important lessons.

My biggest accomplishment so far is that I took both kids to the tree farm on a weekend (SO CROWDED) and we chopped down a tree. I CUT IT DOWN MY OWN SELF. WITH A SAW. I did a hack job and a nice guy with his own family came over and steadied it while I was sawing so it didn’t fall over and crush me, but besides that I did it alone. Luckily the farm picks up the cut trees and carts them down to the station where they shake them and wrap them up for you, but then I hauled it to the car, into the car (God bless minivans) and home into the house. I totally failed at getting it into the stand but E got it set up the next morning and now we have a fully decorated tree. We had to rearrange because my little desk/office corner went in the former Christmas tree spot, but now we can sit on our new little couch, enjoy the fire and look at the tree at the same time. Tomorrow the kids get to start opening their Christmas books (I was going to do one for each day of December but books are really expensive, yo) and we can sit on that new couch by the tree and I can read to them about the Christmas story while I sob quietly because magic and family and loneliness and children and Jesus and FEELINGS. It’s raising my level of holiday spirit from Grinch to Slightly Christmasy, which is a definite improvement.

I haven’t had much time for my own photos lately, which makes me kind of sad. Partly because once something is part of your job it loses a LITTLE bit of the fun and partly because it’s hard to juggle the kids in public and take photos. It’s pretty easy to lose one kid while you’re taking pictures of the other one, and I’m generally only seconds away from losing a kid even WITHOUT a camera in my face. It’s amazing I’ve kept them alive this long, honestly. But this might be the first Christmas they remember when they look back as adults and I want to make sure I have at least some pictures to show them, so here are a few.

christmas 2013

Evan’s first choice, but I told him it was too short.

christmas 2013-2

Caroline’s first choice, also on the small side.

christmas 2013-3

Final selection

christmas 2013-4

After we killed it.

  christmas 2013-5

christmas 2013-6

christmas 2013-7

Watching them wrap it with the cool wrapping machine

christmas 2013-8

The farm had all our favorite food trucks, including the delicious kettle corn people from the farmer’s market.

christmas 2013-9

Decorating

christmas 2013-10

The princess places the angel

christmas 2013-11

Yes, I know it’s out of focus

christmas 2013-12

Fun with bokeh cut-outs

christmas 2013-13

 

Related posts:

Did you know...
Kiawah Island 2011
Thankful Day 1: Well, this isn't a very good start
Clickin' Moms
Wayfair Homemakers
Get Adobe Flash player