Monday, August 30, 2010

Back in the Game

I don't really want to type this, because that will be a total jinx, but I think life is returning to normal.

LP started walking again - on her own two feet - last night. After an awful four and a half days of doctor's visits, carrots, and sticks, she shuffled her way into Sunny Daes in Westport and enjoyed some mint chocolate chip with rainbow sprinkles in a Yankee hat.

We still don't know if the injury was real, imagined or exaggerated, but the Hoos and I do know that the whole ordeal left us spent. Yesterday I was mentally and physically exhausted when I returned from visiting the pediatrician's office. All I wanted to do was crawl under the covers and cry. And I did. For about 20 seconds. But then I pulled myself up.

Because I am the mom.

And, sometimes, being the mom SUCKS.

Yes, a lot of times it is awesome. Which is good, because the kisses and hugs and learning and teaching moments cause momnesia*. Especially when accompanied by a stiff drink. Too bad I don't drink...

*I think I made this up. Did I make this up? Basically it is amnesia for moms to forget labor pain, whining, and all of the other things that would make us question our sanity when we decided to take the dive into motherhood.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Cutting Through

As previously mentioned, on Tuesday we got a call from day care that LP had hurt her foot. There wasn't any redness, swelling, or obvious indication of injury. The Hoos left work early and picked her up to be safe. After a long time at the pediatrician the x-rays appeared to come back clear. The radiologist was still going to review (he or she only looks on Tuesdays and Thursdays apparently) but the general sense was that she was just fine.

Well, telling a 4 year old she is just fine and having it be so - two totally different things.

It is Thursday. LP has yet to stand on her foot. We don't know if 1. she is just scared to even try because it did hurt at some point, 2. it does really still hurt and there is something hidden wrong with it, or 3. she is just trying to kill us softly with whining.

Yesterday day care came up with a solution to basically babysit her for the day - sitting her in one spot and keeping her busy with independent activities. For that I am so appreciative (A big change from the response I would have gotten before the great director mutiny).

I love her, I really, really do. And because of that I am really struggling with how to respond. It is getting more difficult to be sympathetic. Of course if there is really something wrong I will feel super guilty for ever doubting her. AND with it being my first week at my new job, I am distracted and exhausted and my patience is spread thin.

ACK! Motherhood! If only Calgon could just take me away.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Settling In

I know it has been a while since I blogged. And to be honest, I think I at least have a pretty decent excuse.

Today is only Tuesday and I am flat out exhausted. All of the mental and emotional distractions that I avoided or ignored or displaced or just didn't seem to have last week - have hit in full force.

My new job is all it promised to be - challenging and stimulating and a big step up in terms of role and responsibility. I think the last time the "first two days" of anything were so busy was when I had LP. Before that maybe when I started college.

I think the transition to full time work is having more of an impacted than I anticipated. Not on the girls really - they are really excited that I am home in the morning to help get them up and ready for school - more on the Hoos and I. Previously, I was the one with flexibility and long-term stability in my work environment. I was the first call day care made if the girls were sick or had an incident or accident and I was able to drop everything and rush to the rescue when needed. For the next few weeks, the Hoos has to take on that responsibility.

And, of course, while they were 100% fine last week when I was home and available, today at 1 - when I was about to call someone to postpone a conference call to jump into an impromptu meeting with an out-of-town visitor, my cell phone rang. LP landed funny when jumping (or falling) off something in the playground. She was complaining about foot pain and insisting on being carried everywhere. There was no swelling and any injury wasn't obvious beyond what she said or did, but her complaints were consistent and persistent.

We worked it out that the Hoos picked her up to take her to the pediatrician around 4. Two and a half hours, an x-ray and an ace bandage later, we are no closer to uncovering the cause of her wincing. Although, for perhaps the first time the Hoos got to spend the afternoon at the doctor's office. With an uncomfortable whiny child. It sucked. Not that I know this because he told me - he took it like a champ and is totally my hero - but because I have been there.

Bedtime wasn't a dream, but again the Hoos bore the brunt. I am totally appreciative of him picking up the slack - and accepting the lackluster dinner I put on the table.

So, while the new job is busy as all get out, I am still happy to have made the move. I got invited to the company's management team meeting next week - not as an agenda item or observer - but as a participant. That is pretty awesome. I know that after the short term adjustment and some minor hiccups and foot injuries we will be back on track. And hopefully I will be back to blogging more frequently.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


There are some great benefits to working for the same company for a long time - like knowing your way around, having friends, earning respect and flexibility...

There are also some negatives - one of the most prominent is baggage.

I have written before about how I believe I have changed quite significantly in the last eight years. In addition to getting married, buying a house, having kids, I also matured as a person. At 25 I had different priorities, at almost 34 I have a different life. And I can honestly say that I am way more comfortable in my own skin now than I was then. My now former-co-workers witnessed my evolution. They could recall (or at least in my hypercritical head I imagine they could) silly mistakes I made - from poor clothing choices to unfortunate professional decisions.

As I prepare to start my new job next week, as scary as it is to enter a whole new world, it is also a bit freeing. It is an opportunity to reinvent myself. Not that I am walking in trying to be someone I'm not; rather, I am walking in as the person I am today. The confident, sassy, newly highlighted woman with two awesome little girls and a supportive husband.

So, instead of focusing on the scary surrounding starting some place new and different, I am focusing on the opportunity. Not just the actual position, which really is great for me professionally, but the opportunity to have a clean slate.

The only baggage they will see is the neatly packed little briefcase I will carry in on my shoulder.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Long Time Coming

Eight years ago today, I became a missus. In a Jewish wedding there aren't any vows, no grand "I do" at the end. Instead there is the loud "pop" of breaking glass at the conclusion of the ceremony. I didn't need to say "I do" because I had known for seven years that I did.

The Hoos doesn't believe me, but when he stopped, extending a bag of Rainbow Chips Deluxe to me as I sat on one of the benches outside Crawford Hall, I had an epiphany. I had seen him before. He was the guy with the ponytail and the fish hook on his hat. The one who spoke to our professor, Buck, after class about fishing. But in the moment he asked for my phone number so we could study together for a statistics exam, I knew. A few minutes later when I returned to my room and was talking to my mom on the phone, I blurted out "I just met a guy I'm going," catching myself just barely at the end. But knowing.

I thought I was pretty smart at nineteen. And fifteen years after our first study date, eight years after I promised that I was my beloved's and my beloved was mine (ani le-dodi, ve-dodi li), I guess I really was.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Don't You Just Want to Put Me in Your Pocket?

Recently I received an offer from Kodak Gallery to get 50 free photo business cards. "Perfect!" I thought, "Just the thing to put my contact info on and hand out to my soon-to-be-former-colleagues."

They arrived yesterday and are CUTE. I was a little concerned that it was a bit tacky to be handing out personal calling cards, but the reception has been very positive. I think mostly because I put a picture of the family on one side as opposed to just my mug.

I continue to be overwhelmed by the love I have been receiving from the folks at my current job. Everyone is very supportive and excited for me as I ride off into the sunset. Even my VP.

I was a bit concerned he (the VP) would write me off as soon as he heard I was leaving - but just the opposite has happened. He is trying to use every last second of my time on a big project. The good news is that the project has required that I reach out to internal management and external contacts, giving me a good opportunity to let them know I am leaving the company. My LinkedIn network is growing rapidly - which is fantastic.

Leading me to my second piece of advice (first was to get yourself some free personal business cards - duh!): Get yourself on LinkedIn and keep your profile current. That was how the headhunter found me for my new endeavor and it was also how I was able to keep my relationships current so that I could reach out to folks from my past for references.

My last piece of advice for today - McDonald's frozen mocha and mocha frappe - a yummy alternative to laxatives. Drink with caution - or reckless abandon depending on your needs.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


At 5:30 this morning LP was at my bedside, "Mommy? I'm sad."

Really?! Because I'M SLEEPING.

Last week she showed up in the middle of one night THREE times. Each time expressing a different emotion.

"Mommy? I'm sad."

"Mommy? I'm mad."

"Mommy? I'm [something]." (I don't remember what she said, but it was not time appropriate.)

I am not sure if she is learning about feelings at day care or just trying to come up with what she thinks is a good excuse for waking me from my slumber. I wish she would learn that there isn't really a good excuse...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Who Loves Ya, Baby?

This past weekend was all about family.

When we weren't sitting in traffic on Saturday we were at my parents house for a family BBQ. My grandparents were visiting from Florida and since we have yet to get the girls on a plane, we take advantage of any trips they make to this neck of the woods. In addition to two other Aunts and an Uncle, my cousin, who recently relocated to NJ from Oregon, was in attendance with his two adorable daughters, Mira and VG. LP loved being the ringleader for the merry troop and AK was infatuated with 5-month old VG. The capper on the day was LP, AK, and Mira taking a shower together. Adorable.

Sunday we were back in CT and spending time with the Hoos' family. His brother's family is in for a few weeks from Budapest and we try to spend as much time with them as possible on their twice yearly visits. We took a short walk in the woods with both of the Hoos' brothers and their families (13 people!) and than spent the afternoon noshing with more cousins, aunts and uncles. Both girls were wound up and loving all of the attention. AK spent at least a half an hour pretending to do ballet and spinning until she made herself dizzy and LP, once again, enjoyed ordering her cousins around (even though these are her OLDER cousins they still let her take advantage of them).

The weekend was definitely full. But in a good way. The Hoos and I know we are both so fortunate to have such a large and loving family. After so much family time, it does make me sad that we don't get to see my brother very often but it also reminds me that the girls know and love their family no matter the distance or time between visits.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Yes, This Post is Cranky

I have infinite patience during the day. I am loving and supportive and I hardly ever yell or get angry. Bedtime is a whole 'nother story.

By the end of the day, I can understand my kids being cranky and tired. I am too. Which is why I just want them to brush their teeth, go to the bathroom, take a shower and go to bed. It would be so much better for all of us if we just accepted our fate. But we don't.

They insist on resisting my efforts, I insist on them getting in the G.D. shower and everything goes downhill from there. All of this is exacerbated when I am on my own and have deferred my dinner until after they are asleep.

Last night was a disaster. Highlights include:
  • LP yelling that she is "very, very upset."
  • AK crying when I yell at her for wiping half a jar of Vick's vaporub on her chest and neck
  • LP howling that her one, single, tiny, mosquito bite hurts
  • My dinner of cheezits and apple sauce to the sweet sounds of screaming children from upstairs
  • LP questioning me when I crawl out of her bed at 10 to turn off the TV downstairs and put on my PJs
  • The Hoos getting home about 20 seconds after I turn off the TV
  • Going to bed incredibly cranky AND with unbrushed teeth and an unwashed face
  • Getting woken up in the middle of the night by LP for who knows what reason
  • Sleeping for what I swear was a total of two hours, despite my total exhaustion

Tonight will be the night I go to bed early. Too bad we are going to a Bluefish game and our routine will be shot before we even get started...

Yes, this post is cranky. Like me.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

Last night I was on my own with the girls since the Hoos had a work event. After chilling on the playground until 6:15 we headed home for dinner. The girls never made it into the house.

Upon arriving at home, LP looked at the bucket full of seashells she had collected at the beach and directed me to "get paper and glue so that we can do a little project." Returning with paper and playdough (I couldn't find the glue and we have an overabundance of bleh colored playdough thanks to the girls' love of mixing), I told them to yell if they needed me and left the door open as I went inside to take care of things in the kitchen.

LP went in and out of the house a few times, getting paint brushes and water colors and other stuff to maximize the fun. At some point they decided to turn on the hose and wash each other's hands - and tushies (having stripped down after deciding it would be fun to be naked). I checked in frequently and brought vittles out several times to make sure they didn't skip dinner and then refuse to go to bed out of hunger.

As I washed dishes, I started to wonder if I should be outside with them. I wasn't concerned for their well-being - they were safe in the yard - but I felt guilty that I was not participating in their fun. And then I realized - they didn't need me. They had each other.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


Just a post to capture how much I love my little buggers.

AK's nightly routine is constantly evolving. However there are two standard elements - after reading her book(s) she insists on leaving the room, explaining, "Night daddy, [LP]! Kiss. Hug." I know she is finally ready to settle down after she climbs into her crib and repeats "Goodnight. I luff you." The sweetness is sticky. And awesome.

LP is becoming such a little girl. She is totally aware of everything around her. We had the carpets cleaned recently and I established a new rule of not eating anywhere in the living room and especially on the couch (which was so disgusting and water stained before I had it cleaned that I had it covered with a blanket out of shame). Now, anytime someone walks on the rug in shoes she chases them, admonishing, "No shoes on the rug!"

Building on this, yesterday I had the house professionally cleaned for the first time in months. When she walked in the house she inhaled the cleanser scent and concluded, "The house smells yummy."

Are they angels all the time? No. Do they get along perfectly all of the time? No. Do I love them more than I can possible express? Without a doubt.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Taking a Leap

You may have noticed I haven't been blogging much lately.

It's not because there isn't a lot going on - there is - but most of it has to do with me, and this blog is really about my kids.

In a nutshell, I am leaving the company I have been with for eight years and taking a leap.

I have accepted an exciting new job. It is a big step up for me. Not a step I can't handle (because after a rigorous interview process I have convinced the company's executives and myself that I can do this) but a reach, a challenge. Something my current job has never really been. It will give me professional opportunities that I would never get at my current organization and the location will give our family new opportunities.

This whole process has been very emotional. While I am very excited for my job - and totally stoked to be kissing off my commute - I am really sad to say goodbye to my friends. I started this job a month before the Hoos and I got married. To say my life is a bit different now than it was in 2002 is an understatement. I have grown and changed alongside an incredible group of women. Women that are so awesome that they are focusing on all of the positive impacts this job will have of my life and not the downside.

When I left my last job, I was angry and unhappy. I wanted my exit to have a lasting impact - to hurt. It didn't. This time around, I want my absence to have no negative impact. I guess I have learned something.