Sunday, February 28, 2016

The Great Salt Lake and Us

Yesterday we took the kids to the Great Salt Lake. I must be stupid, but it was also my first time. I've driven by it a bunch of times....(hello, Wendover!!) but this was my first time getting out of the car and checking it out. It was sunny and beautiful. A bit windy, but I captured a few good shots. Love my family!!

Panoramic Goodness
I like to think I'm a pro photographer.

But I try to blur my face when I'm not wearing makeup.
Te he he

My Son totally has "crazy eyes" as we call them. But man, I love his smile!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Parenting Is

Parenting is picking up your baby, setting them on your hip, grabbing the diapers, the blanket, tucking the teddy under your arm and the cell phone under your chin, and you drop the binkie....which somehow manages to bounce way off into BFE underneath the bed.

Parenting is letting baby hair tickle your face into madness because they fell asleep smashed against you and if you move to wipe those dastardly flyaways from your irritated nose it will wake the demon!

Parenting is never eating your full serving. You will eat 1/3 of what is on your plate. Your toddler will "eat" 1/3 of it. And 1/3 will end up on the floor. Squashed into your beautiful hardwood floor.

Parenting is never sleeping. Ever. By the time one kid's eyes close, the other's are opening. If one is crying, the other has to.

Parenting is chasing your kid into the bathroom 3 times a night because they either have an obsession with sitting on the potty or they sleep walk to the potty...because they never actually go potty in the night.

Parenting is never having furniture at the proper right angles. You will have couches and chairs and ottomans and they will all be facing random angles thanks to your crooked kids...who bought a crooked fish....the crooked cat was he snatched it off the dish...

Parenting is wearing matching head to toe outfits with your daughter.

Parenting is reading the same 5 children's books until you have them memorized and start to speak in rhyme.

Parenting is being a five foot tall Kleenex.

Parenting is never viewing your tub as a safe haven again.

Parenting is stepping on the sharpest kid toy, every freakin time you put it away and there it is again, in the corner, in the hall.

Parenting is being broke. Except when your girl needs that outfit. And that bow. And those shoes. And the bracelet.

Parenting is living in baby puke 24/7. Just adapt to the smell. It could be worse. It could be the 1800's.

Parenting is feeling a happiness you've never known.

Parenting is feeling an anger you've never known.

Parenting is feeling a worry you've never known.

Parenting is being psychologically unfit for society.

Parenting is being 100% selfless. You never get what you want, ever. You can't eat what you want, because it makes your baby sick. You can't wear the shirt you want, because your toddler will get it dirty. You can't eat, sleep, shower, work out, watch grown up television, or have nice decorations and pillows. (I have a fondness for my pillows)

Parenting is being smarter and less tolerant, of immature individuals who make fun of people with kids, at the same time.

Parenting is having a best friend, no matter what you do.

Parenting is laughing at people who think breasts are sexual objects.

Parenting is living in a world of poop. Here is my poop castle, with my poop thrown, and my poop crown.

Parenting is taking 45 min to get out the door! And just when you do and both kids are buckled in, the car is running, and you're gonna be late, you realize you're wearing slippers.

Parenting is wearing slippers everywhere.

Parenting is being pissed at everything your neighbors do during naptime.

Parenting is much different than owning pets. Your pet cat and snake and hamster are such cute offspring!--side eye.

Parenting is taking a cold bath with your kid, at 2am, because they are running a fever of 103 and one of you is about to have a seizure.

Parenting is loving your mom butt.

Parenting is being the Grumpiest happy person you've ever met.

Parenting is digging for your son's penis in hit fat rolls.

Parenting is hearing your baby cry...from 5 miles away....

Parenting is never wearing white or cream, or light yellow. Scratch that. Yellow blends in.

Parenting is controlling your temper in a divine like manner.

Parenting is being so used to kid breath old diaper smell that hippies now smell like glittering rainbows.

Parenting is crying during family pictures.

Parenting is thinking you're doing a better job than everyone else.

Parenting is praying more than you've ever done before.

Parenting is being a five foot tall rocking chair made of flesh and blood and feelings!

Parenting is having feelings, but they don't matter.

Parenting is stalking every known sex offender before they stalk you.

Parenting is having your concealed weapons permit.

Parenting is being a mammal, grooming your baby like a she-ape, scraping cradle cap from their scalp, biting off their long fingernails, sniffing their bum, snarling at nearby threats, ooing and awing in primal cute gibberish,  sleeping with them on your teet, rubbing your face all over theirs to mark them with your scent while breathing them in, bathing them in kisses just shy of licking them clean. 

Parenting is singing made up lyrics in a made up song, but your child will never know if it's right or wrong. (I rhyme)

Parenting is being willing to fight anyone, anywhere, anytime.

Parenting is looking forward to jail...if someone hurts your kid.

Parenting is going Gray. And wearing it like a badge of honor. (this was my first Gray hair...ya, I achieved it after giving birth to my son. I named her Brunehilda. This here, is my second Gray hair. Phyillis. She came after 4 months of listening to 2 screaming babies. I know. Smirk. I bet I have a third somewhere.)

Parenting is being able to speak in tongues.

Parenting is understanding that Bop Bop means Otter Pop in under a millisecond.

Parenting is freaking out at Wal-Mart because you see a little boy carrying a stuffed animal, Chase, from the Paw Patrol, which is your daughters favorite Nickolodeon cartoon.

Parenting is sweeping 6 times a day.

Parenting is doing laundry 6 times a day.

Parenting is doing the dishes 6 times a day.

Parenting is wanting to slap people who don't have kids when they talk about their problems, while simultaneously envying them and their problems.

Parenting is a full-time job with unexpected overtime and your boss is the short name for Richard.

Parenting is finding joy in the little things.

Parenting is patience. 

Parenting is sacrifice.

Parenting is saying, Don't! 8,039 times a day.

Parenting is being a big fat hypocrite. (puts kids to bed, sits down, puts feet on the couch, turns on Breaking Bad, eats ice cream while surfing the web until 11pm)

Parenting is noise.

Parenting is understanding your worth and value and purpose as a human being.

Parenting is falling asleep while standing up even after 2 Mountain Dews.

Parenting is being fertile and a natural birth control at the same time.

Parenting is giving up your dreams for someone else's. And being stupidly happy for it!

Parenting is secretly mocking people who pay for gym memberships, coffee, or love.

Parenting is having one, really solid, strong, man arm.

Parenting is potty training, and you take your kid to the public restroom at the mall where they grab the toilet seat and then your face while your hands are busy pulling up their pants.

Parenting is work.

Parenting is fun.

Parenting is awesome.

Parenting is the best thing in the whole world!!!!!!!

Saturday, February 20, 2016

52 Weeks of Gratitude Week 6 and 7

I promise I've been diligent in my challenge, I just slack on posting it here.

For week 6 and 7, we were asked to write about what we were thankful about for a Friend and for the city we live in.

I am glad the city I live in is close to all my family members. I really do enjoy being so close to all my siblings and my parents. It makes me happy!! We hang out so much it's weird.

For Friend 1. I choose my husband. I know, cop out. But he is my best friend and it makes life so much more enjoyable. When you marry your best friend, you can't stand being mad at each other. You genuinely like spending time together, so you get over your fights quickly. You respect one another. You might piss each other off now and then, but you always work it out because you miss your best friend.

Friday, February 19, 2016

What Parenting is Really Like

I'm not gonna lie. I thought this is what parenting would be like. 

When I had my daughter, I pictured us just like each other flowers, giggling, while sparkles showered down around us, and someone randomly catching this beautiful moment on camera so that we could live in it forever (and by that I mean subtly showing off by posting it on every social media platform). The lighting would be perfect. Our hair would be perfect. Our smiles would be perfect. Our outfits would match PERFECTLY. Basically everything was PERFECT.  
Let me tell you what parenting is. 
(Disclaimer, this is just my story so if you do live a life like this picture, leave my blog immediately and ram your face into the nearest hard object--and most of what I say is said humorously, so calm your tit) 

Again, let me tell you what parenting is. Parenting, for me, is listening to kids scream. Constantly. Like, always. I don't think a moment goes by in my day when one of my two children is not screaming. I'm not sure if they're very mad creatures, or if it is just their way of communicating, or if they are determined to gray my hair entirely by age 30. Whatever the case, my children scream. They do not sit quietly, or calmly, or peacefully. 

They do not pose for pictures. I can't tell you how many thousands of BLURRY pictures I have on my phone. When people start talking about their kids' milestones, I get all excited like, "Here, let me show you!" 

This is my daughter taking her first steps.
(blurry photo)
Oh, this is my son when he first smiled.
(blurry photo)
This is when I took my kids to the aquarium!! They just LOVED the penguins!
(indestinguishable blob within blurry photo)
But really. If I ever get a non-blurry photo of my kids doing something epic, I will go to my grave happy.
Having kids is literally having little demons. I look between my two offspring wondering what I did to deserve the spawn of Satan. And sometimes, my heart glows with so much pride and joy, I smile because my heart is so full, and I just know I've done everything right in the world.....wait, wrong blog post. What I really thought, was, "Do shut up, already! Can't you see I'm trying  to figure out what 'Ganosh da blah blu blhashnotgdatie!' means? Throwing the remote will NOT make your movie start. No, I don't want to eat your half chewed, slobbery piece of--okay, fank-voo bery buch, I will just chew this and barf a little. For the love, please cover your mouth when you cough and FOR THE NINETEENTH TIME, PLEASE DO NOT SQUASH THE BLUEBERRIES INTO THE PILLOWS!!!!"

I've realized, as I look around, that THIS is indeed what having children is supposed to be like. This IS my life. I REMIND MYSELF DAILY, that I was not meant to have picture perfect kids. We did not step out of a magzine. Unless it is the latest issue of Moms In The ER because I threw out my back picking my toddler up since she reaches for me and yells, "Up! Up! Up!" every five seconds...

Our life will be full of tears and snot and coughing (yes, today all three of us have the flu bug. It is awesome ) It will be full of parental competition. Yes, you in your $3,000 double wide jogger. You and your Honest Company wipes can disappear. (sobs to self....I...b-buy....K-k-ki-kirkland wipes, o-ok?) But I also remind myself DAILY, that my heart is full of joy, despite these unfortunate circumstances. 

When we see one another's posts on social media, we forget that the picture is just a single snapshot, caught in one millisecond, and it happened to be the very best one which is why it was made public. That's what I do, anyway. I choose these wonderful pictures of me and my kids, with the sun shining on us like little angels. I might even Photoshop some butterflies and rainbows, because I sort of want to live in that alternate reality. Every now and then, it would be nice to say, "My kids are SOOO well-behaved, 24/7, especially on the days they decide to skip naps!"

Every now and then, it would be nice if my kids skipped in circles at my feet, singing songs from The Sound of Music, instead of sprinting from room to room, undoing everything that can be undone, shouting unintelligible gibberish that closely resembles something Limp Bizkit would produce.

It would be cool if the highlight of my day was sleeping in until 10am, in a bed that had clean sheets, with fluffed pillows, instead of the highlight being how many times my kid made it to the potty before going potty. 

If the radio was my background noise, instead of my son crying and fussing every breathing minute. 

If my hair looked done...I did this bun different than yesterday, can you tell?!? (sly smirk) 

There are days when I would rather look like my 19 year old self again, and have spare time, or a LONG hot shower, NOT use so many cuss words, and feel like I AM impacting the world in one way or another. I could do without so many spills, and poopie pants. I could pass on the letting-my-husband-watch-the-kids-so-I-can-take-a-nap....which translates into: Me lying in my bedroom, with the door shut, silently crying because I'm too exhausted to sleep and my head is pounding and I'm starving and dehydrated and the natural disaster that is taking place in my living room will eventually have to be cleaned up. 

I so thought I'd be that mom whose daughter ran up to her as fast as she could, wrapped her wee arms around my neck, gave me a big kiss, and said, "I love you, mom!" 

The truth is, I AM that mom. MY DAUGHTER DOES run up to me, she jumps--hands flying wide---gaping smile on her face-- and trusts that I will catch her. She gives me huge, wet, open-mouthed kisses on my cheek that doubles as her designated booger rubbing surface. She mumbles something in her mixed toddler-English which I choose to believe means, I love you, mom. And I know it does, because we sit there for a few minutes, embracing one another, ignoring the boogers and the sticky fingers stuck in my hair, and the streak of ketchup that travelled from her kiddie plate all the way to the front of my sweater. And we listen to her younger brother screeching in the background, telling us he is lonely and wants in on the action. So I carry her to the floor, where we sit down and I gather both kids into my lap. We sit, smushed, with books and sippies surrounding us, the same movie on repeat. My daughter smells like urine and cough syrup, not butterflies and rainbows. My son has two dreadlocks in his hair and puke down the front of his chest, but he's blowing bubbles and contentedly snuggling into me, with only one sock on. I'm suddenly no longer resentful of my husband abandoning me every morning to his luxury getaway called "work". And instead of screaming at him first thing as he walks through the door, "You did this to me!" I just wave and blow him a kiss, and I'm thinking, THIS is it. THIS is what it is all about. AND I AM STUPIDLY HAPPY. I'm pretty sure we would be blurry as heck if someone tried to snap a photo of us, but they would capture a moment of pure bliss. It's okay, a blurry image will suffice, because these memories will live on crystal clear in my mind and heart forever. My son will eventually sleep, and during that short time I'll stare at his chubby cheeks and cry...happy tears. Nobody knows why. My daughter will grab my finger, because she knows her brother is out for at least a half hour and she has my undivided attention. She will drag me to her table and we will paint and color, and I won't even care about how much of it stains my white tile floor. In fact, I'll spot half an uneaten granola bar down there and think, SCORE! Lunch!!! And I didn't even have to cook.
Nightime will roll around and the kids will take a bath together. My son will sit and smile and laugh, in his 4 month old, fatty McFatt Fat way. He adores watching his sister. She will splash water all over and throw each of her bath toys out of the tub. I'll reflect on the ups and downs of the day. I did try to do something educational, but so what if my kid doesn't read by age 4? I did put on cartoons for a minute so I could take a breather, rehabilitate, give myself a pep talk, scrub six dishes, and get back in it!! As soon as everyone is in bed, and the house does fall quiet, because I am just SO SURE, it will never be quiet again and am AMAZED EVERY NIGHT when it is....I pick up the toys, mop, sweep, straighten the stupid ottoman that is always crooked, try to wash the blueberries out of my ridiculous throw pillows, and spray some Febreeze to get rid of the aroma of day-old-diaper-butt floating out of my hallway. I'm fantasizing that my night will be filled with restful dreams of dandelions. I'm fantasizing about the days when laying in bed with the hubs was a romantic endeavor. About days when I could remember what the date was, or what day of the week it was. About getting to and from point A. to point B. in less than 45 minutes. And all the while, I'm grinning. An idiotic, loopy partially insane grin, for no intents or purposes. I might even burst into laughter, remembering my daughter's face as she danced to her favorite song in Lilo and Stitch, or how she clapped her hands when she was so thrilled she shoved the binkie into her brother's mouth to help him stop crying. I fantasize about dropping my baby weight WHILE still INDULGING in my morning MOUNTIAN DEW BINGE!! ....even as I ingest a lethal dose of melatonin because heaven knows it's past 8pm!! No one out there knows my name or my story, and I did not save anyone's lives, per se. Unless you consider rapidly extracting a cheerio from your 4 month old sons mouth, as your two year old says, "Dank Doo!" and cheers because she is proud she learned to share. Do I consider myself a hero? Yes, I do...(side eye)   I accomplished something and I feel grand.

I'm not sure what I thought parenting would be like exactly, or why I thought it might be different, but it is exactly as it should be. And I love it.

This is not my life.
This is my life. Slobbery smashed granola bar mess and all.

Monday, February 1, 2016

52 Weeks of Gratitude: Week 5

This week, week 5, our prompt for the 52 Weeks of Gratitude challenge is: Something someone gave you.

I'm going to choose my necklace my husband gave me after we had our baby girl. She is almost two now! It is a circle with her name engraved on it and two birthstones. Dangling in the center of the circle is the same stone as my wedding ring. There is room on it for me to have My son's name engraved on it, and add one of his birth stones. My husband also bought a matching one for Atley. I cannot wait to give it to her, but I want to wait until she's old enough not to lose it! I wear mine almost every single day!! It is the most thoughtful gift ever.