Thursday, February 12, 2015

Pinterest and All the Pressure

The E's have a Valentine's Day party today at school.  It's their first school party.  Once I got the newsletter and read parents were invited I panicked a bit.  I really don't know any of the other parents.  We've chatted while coming or going, but that's all.  I know all but 1-2 of the kids are stay at home kids. I am worried their moms/dads are going to come up with amazing handmade Valentines and treats. 

Whoever created Pinterest should get punched in the bush.  Sure, there are wonderful tutorials and do it yourself ideas, but it puts so much pressure on parents!!  Homemade is all the rage. Damn it, I don't have time to be crafty all the time.  I feel like I'm under a lot of pressure to make amazing homemade everything for the twins, entertain them with crafty activities all day and throw amazing parties thanks to Pinterest.  I hate it.

I don't have the time or energy to create homemade Valentines this year.  Sorry, Evan and Ella. So we went to Target and picked out Valentines. Evan picked out Minion valentines and Ella picked out Frozen. Big surprise! We got some Valentine themed pretzels to pair with them.  I got all those assembled yesterday and decided it was too plain.  I quickly made up some cute bags to put them in.

Now the most tricky part, the snack!  I was worried about the treat we are supposed to bring.  Are these parents health freaks?  Will they be all judgey if I don't make something from scratch?  I know, I know, I shouldn't care, but I do.  I'm the person who cares what other people think.  We are mostly healthy with our food choices for the E's, but I'm okay with them having a cookie now and then. Would other moms feel this way?  Well, it turns out finding a healthy treat that a 2 year old can eat is not easy.  This is what I came up with: sugar cookies topped with strawberry Greek yogurt and fruit.  Geeze these things were tedious to make.  These two year olds will eat these cookies.  I will make them after what I went through to make them.

Anyway, I picked up a shift at work tonight and I am fighting some kind of sinus thing.  I have a headache and some congestion in my sinuses.  I thought it might be some early allergies, but I'm afraid I'm fighting off a sinus infection.  Great.  I'm not at all in the mood to go deal with a room of wild toddlers, the wildest who will be mine.  Thankfully, the husband is coming to their party too.  He works across the street from their school.  It will be a huge help to have someone else there to help me manage the Duo.  They are making floats and a craft and snacking.  Maybe we'll make it out without being covered in paint and soaked from a float.

I need to get myself together and go celebrate Valentine's Day!  Let's hope these are decent non-judgey parents!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

All the Whining

Yesterday my husband came home from work around 5:20.  Before I even offered him a greeting I shouted 'I need a cocktail now! I can't handle the whining!'  Welcome home!

I'm not sure how often other people's kids whine, but some days it feels like ours whine all day long!  I cannot express how freaking anxious I am for them to start talking more.  I can only hope that developing their speech will help eliminate the whining. 

A quick example from yesterday: Ella woke up from her nap and wanted a snack. She walked out to the kitchen and started whining. I asked her what do you want? She replied with more whining. I asked her to tell me what she wanted. She whined.  I asked her if she wanted water to which she replied 'yeah. yeah.'  Then I asked her why she couldn't just say the word water and eliminate the whining.  She just stared at me in response.

Getting meals prepared and cooked can be quite challenging.  The only thing I have found that give me at least 5 minute increments to complete something is letting them watch tv.  So while I am getting dinner ready, they watch tv.  If I don't have dinner served by 5:30 the whining hits a whole new level! They are STARVING and must eat by 5:30 to keep the peace so I'm under a lot of pressure in that kitchen.  Even with the tv on, someone is sure to touch the other, sit in the others chair, steal the others water or doll or plane and whining ensues.  I have to walk out to the living room to smooth over whatever problem is happening before the whining will stop. Cooking is stressful!  I miss the carefree days of leisurely cooking a delicious meal. 

Some days it feels like I say 'stop whining' 498234234 times.  I probably do.  Does it help? Nope.  I encourage them to use words and talk all damn day, but it doesn't help. Whining is the preferred way to communicate right now.  Have I mentioned how anxious I am for them to talk?

So there ya have it.  My kids whine.  A lot.  Really, a lot.  It drives me batty.  I don't know how to fix it.  I can cope with a brandy old fashioned at the end of the day on those particularly whine-filled days.  That's the only solution I have found to help ease my irritation from all the whining.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Typical Evan

I can't turn my back for a second...

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

One Year Later

I haven't written anything in almost a year. A YEAR!! Wow. I have thought about it most weeks, but I couldn't ever find the time to actually make it happen. My free time (when the kids are napping) is typically spent cleaning up the disaster Evan and Ella created, prepping/cooking dinner, folding laundry, stuffing diapers, etc. I sneak in a few naps here and there (working late nights makes me tired) and sometimes I get time to just sit and watch TV.  I rarely thought I'd have the time to get out the computer and write. Although I MISS IT!!! So here I am, attempting to write again.

What has changed in the past year that I suddenly feel confident enough to have enough time to commit to writing again? A lot. I kept holding on to the 'it gets easier when they turn one' idea, but one came and went and it was still so damn hard. Honestly, I have struggled a lot in the past year. I've struggled to stay afloat more often than not. I've struggled to keep friendships alive. I've struggled finding time for myself. I've struggled with keeping calm when my wild children want to climb on everything, scream on every outing and had weeks of not sleeping through the night. I struggled to find a balance between complete exhaustion from working, but needing to get out of the house. I've struggled with keeping a happy and healthy marriage; we've argued more with each other in the past 2 years than we have in the past 13 years I've known my husband. I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture. This has not been easy for me/us. However, I feel like it is FINALLY getting easier. I can go on outings successfully.  Evan and Ella are listening more every day. They are certainly always the most energetic kids around most days, but it's getting easier. At almost 2.5 years of age I have finally gotten to the point where I think life is getting a bit easier. It's certainly not easy, but it is so much better than it was at any point in the past 2.5 years.

Where do I go from here? I honestly don't know where to start. I can't catch you up on what has happened in the past year. There has been too much. I'm just going to start with what's going on now.

We had Evan and Ella evaluated shortly after their second birthdays because speech wasn't happening. Both scored high in all developmental areas except for speech. Ella was borderline on the requiring speech services scale. Evan was as well, but since he was less cooperative during the eval, he came out needed services and Ella did not. I completely disagreed with the eval, but figured we would check out speech therapy anyway. It took months to actually get speech therapy started. We are finally going once a week for an hour. We've only been a few times. I can't say it's helping with speech, but it's very structured and Evan is learning to listen and follow directions well. I'm not worried about their speech. They understand everything we are saying and follow directions. They 'talk' all the time, but not in words we can understand. They understand each other though. I do get frustrated when they have temper tantrums because they want something and I don't know what they want because they won't say it!! It seems to happen at meal time a lot. I am more than ready for the language explosion to happen.

During the evals, there was some concern regarding Evan's attention span.  He is such a spirited little boy... It was suggested we get him in a Mother's Day Out program or preschool. Having him be in a structured environment would help him a bit with his attention. Most of the MDO programs go from 9-2 and they nap at them. I know my kids would have a hard time napping in that kind of environment and if they don't nap well they are complete and utter screaming piles of toddler by the evening.  To save my sanity, we went with a preschool program that goes from 9-12 twice a week. They've been going for a month now and I can notice a big difference! Evan is listening better and following directions better.  He does well in school and they have no concerns about him. He even sits during circle time. Mind blown. Ella is doing great too. They are both very social and love the crafts and activities.

I could go on a lot longer, but nap time is coming to an end soon, so I'm going to have to wrap this up for now. I wonder if anyone will read this? It's been so long....