MegaRant


Just needing to rant today. I’m losing my mind between the constant night-waking and the unpredictable nap “schedule.” It’s so frustrating when people tell me “she should be on a schedule by now,” and “she’s too old to be waking up so much.” What am I supposed to do with that? I do relay this information to baby, but for some reason, she does not change her behavior.

So, am I supposed to let her “cry it out?” Should I stop rocking and nursing her to sleep? I’m SO at a loss, here.

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MegaEarthy: 50 Shades of Green


Since I was young, I have been concerned for the environment. I even had a Greenpeace tote bag and T-shirt in Junior High. I probably felt that this meant I was “green.” Besides sorting the recycling for my mother, I’m quite sure I was not. But how much does one have to DO in order to say you’ve “gone green?” Are there different levels of greenness? When, exactly, can I say I’ve done my part and can stop feeling guilty for killing the planet?

So, how green am I, really? On the one hand, I keep my house toasty in the winter and as cool as possible in the summer. I let my car idle to warm up and while waiting to pick my kids up from school, sometimes with the air conditioning on. I buy products which are disposable, and are sold with far too much packaging. I could go on and on.

On the other hand, there are many things I do to try to be green. We recycle, and I recently put our bins where we can easily access them – they had been in a closet and I’m pretty sure I was the only one aware of their existence. I’m constantly turning off lights and TV’s (usually left on my on of my children . . . or husband). We buy local produce, when possible (which isn’t often, in our little town). I try to conserve water, whenever I can; I even purchased a high efficiency washer and dryer set. I still feel that all of these things do very little for the world; like I’m living at a low-level of greenness.

Our cutest cloth diaper, bumGenius in Lovelace ❤

A couple of months ago, I made a change that I feel ups my green level and actually makes a daily difference. I began to use cloth diapers on my baby. Now, I’m sure that I’ll be writing more about this in a later entry, but I’ll sum up for now. It makes me feel like I’m actually achieving something. After diapering my first two children in disposables, I’m proud that this child’s waste is no longer (she started in disposables) rolled up in indestructible, plastic packages, taking up space in a landfill for the next 1000 years. The amount of garbage we accumulate has gone way down, since making this change. Now, I’m still using disposable wipes (the hard-cord cloth mamas use cloth wipes!), so I’m still creating garbage in the nursery, but am feeling more green than ever! Babies tend to use 10-12 diapers a day, for the first 2-3 years of their lives. That’s a whole lot of nasty, if you ask me! It takes a small investment to start, but you save tons more, in the long run. It also takes a commitment to spend time washing and reassembling them, but it’s all worth it to make a difference in this way! However, I know that there is a lot more I can do, in my daily life, to do better.

We hold the health of the world, in our hands!

When it comes down to it, it’s the everyday decisions that matter. If you make a conscious effort to make “green” choices, then that’s the difference you make, today. I plan to ask myself, “how green can I be today?” upon waking, from now on, and to remind myself to make good choices throughout the day. There have to be at least 50 shades of green, in terms of how our daily decisions effect the health of the environment. I’m going to try, every day, to make my shade the greenest that I can.

What shade of green will YOU be today??

MegaMomming at Home


When a woman becomes a mother, whether for the first or the fifth time, the decision of whether or not to leave home and baby to go to work is a difficult one. I know, because I’ve been faced with this decision three times, now. Leaving my first two babies to return to work was one of the most heart-wrenching things I think I’ve done. Yes, it is good to rejoin the world of adults and to be productive, and it was essential for my family, financially, at the time. That didn’t make the transition any easier.

New baby, Sophia!

This time around, with the birth of my third child, I’ve decided to stay home. My husband would love for me to bring home a paycheck, but he hasn’t complained (yet). He did, in fact, agree to this arrangement before Sophia was conceived (though he claims he doesn’t recall this conversation). Staying home with baby was my only condition when considering having a third child, and he agreed to my terms. Luckily, he now has a well-paying job and, so far, we have been able to afford this arrangement. I am now a stay-at-home-mom!

Being a full-time mom is not exactly what I imagined it to be. I envisioned an immaculate home, running errands, doing crafts, making nutritious meals for my family, and having plenty of time left over to play with baby. Somehow, however, these things aren’t part of my daily life. I do keep my home pretty clean and orderly, but as I look around, I see much that needs attention. I very rarely run any errands, partially due to the unpredictable nature of Sophie’s naps (I also detest grocery shopping). I do cook, once in a while, but that time of day usually includes a fussy babe who is severely lacking in the nap department; can you say “clingy?” Additionally, my children are notoriously picky-eaters; who wants to slave over a meal that you have to convince everyone to try? I DO play with Sophia, continuously throughout the day, but who has time for crafts?

Lunchtime!

One of my biggest time-eaters seems to be Sophie’s naps, or lack thereof. Sometimes it feels like I spend half of the day (or more) nursing and rocking and TRYING to get baby to sleep. It’s so frustrating when I KNOW she’s tired, but she won’t stay asleep, after falling asleep, then waking when put in her crib. Nap-strike days are the worst for me. She, funny enough, seems fine these days, and even energetic. . . I’m not sure how. The lack of her naps leaves me exhausted and frustrated.

Time-eater number two: laundry. Between daily diaper washes (which take a couple hours, at best) and regular laundry (every other day, or so), my washer and dryer are working almost constantly – and so am I. With both of these time-eaters working against me, I hardly have time to load, run, and unload the dishwasher, make lunch for Sophia and I, clean the kitchen, sweep, mop, vacuum, and pick the kids up from school (no busing in my small town).  How do moms who work full-time get any of these things done, when I can barely keep up??

Playtime with Momma

It is true that being a working mom is tough – I’ve been there, too – but I argue that it can be equally tough (though in different ways) to be a SAHM. The stresses brought on by everyday baby-rearing (like Sophie’s nap issues and sleep-deprivation), combined with the pressure to keep up the home, and the lack of adult interaction really does make being a mom the hardest job you’ll ever love.  That being said, I am thrilled to be able to share my days with my little one; they are only this small for a short time, after all. I feel blessed that I get to be with Sophie all day and am witness to every first in her young life. In fact, I just saw her take a couple, wobbly steps, while writing this! I wish all moms could have the opportunity to stay home longer with their babies; I wouldn’t rather be anywhere else!!

MegaBlogging


So, why am I starting a blog?  I guess, being a mom, I have reasons to vent. Being 2012, I think I’ve forgotten how to write with pen and paper, so keeping a traditional journal is out of the question. What better way to explore my insecurities, doubts, and daily successes and failures than to proclaim them to the world (or very few, if I’m more unpopular)?

A little background on me; I live in Northern Michigan. It is beautiful here and I love it during spring, summer, and fall. Unfortunately, winter sucks and lasts around 6 months. However, when I consider living elsewhere, I remind myself that we rarely see tornadoes, never a hurricane or earthquake, and snow, compared to other natural disasters, is fairly minor and rarely deadly. I suppose I’ll suck it up, and suffer through the seemingly endless winters. So, when I complain during the middle of a snow storm and people ask me, “well, why don’t you just move?” this is why. Besides, the gorgeous seasons and endless supply of natural lakes and rivers make up for it!

I have lived elsewhere. I went to school at Western Michigan University, which is downstate. After panicking over what I should major in, several times, I ended up with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology, with a minor in Recreation.  I loved learning about these subjects, and did rather well. However, I never gave any thought to how I would put these to work for me, so to speak, after graduation.  Being that, without a Master’s or PhD, there’s not a whole lot you can do with these degrees, I have never found myself in a career in Sociology. After graduation, I moved to Boulder, Colorado with a boyfriend, and it was here that I began taking a correspondence course to become a veterinary assistant. I held an entry-level job there before moving back home, when said boyfriend and I split.

It was then that I met my husband and we created, rather quickly, our first child. We hurried to purchase a mobile home in a park, where I broke up with him. I chalk this up to pregnancy hormones; a few short months after the birth of our daughter, Jeana, we were back together and engaged.  A year later, we were married (with our daughter, 18 months, joining us in the ceremony).

After trying to conceive for 8 months, we were expecting Jeana’s little sister. Over the years, I will question the sanity of this choice many times over. When Jeana was almost 3, Paige was born and we moved to a smaller town and bigger house, to make room for our growing family.

At this point, I decide there’s NO WAY I’d have another baby. Paige is a handful and a half and, as they’ve gotten older, the girls only get along about 1/2 of the time. Somehow, we mother’s tend to forget about the tedium and discomfort of pregnancy, the horrific pain of labor and delivery, as well as the insanity brought on by countless sleepless nights and endless diaper changes. We begin to CRAVE babies.  It’s this unexplainable drive. And so, after 3 1/2 years of trying and simply not trying not to, we were expecting our third girl.

As of August 2011, we are a family of five, which I never thought possible.  Flash forward to today, May 2012 and Sophia is now 9 months old, and it is here that we begin our blogging adventure. Jeana is now 10 and Paige (who was always “Baby” to me) is 7 1/2. Sophie is at the center of all our lives, and has us wrapped around her chubby fingers. I don’t think that any of us would have it any other way, as she has certainly captured our hearts! Things are simultaneously, perfect and horribly trying. This is my first attempt at stay-at-home mothering, and it certainly is the hardest job you’ll ever love! My days can be extremely stressful, but there’s no other way I’d rather spend my time; immersed in the wonderful bond of mother/infant.  I hope you’ll enjoy my trials and tribulations!