The Worst.

I don’t know if any of you have dogs. Yes? No? Wanting one? Want mine? Probably not. At least, not after I tell you this story.

I was having an absolutely lovely morning. It was raining all night, and all morning. I just love the rain! It makes everything so pretty and sparkly and it is so relaxing to fall asleep to!

I made up a batch of smoothies for the week, made lunches for myself and Jeremy, and took Blueberry over to Jeremy’s work so we could have lunch with him. It was really nice just sitting and chatting with him and playing with Blueberry, who was making faces and laughing at all of his coworkers.

Afterwards we stopped by the library to pick out 2 “new” books for Blueberry, and I rented one for myself (digging The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare!).

We swung by the city hall so I could get my business license, and the ladies there absolutely fell IN LOVE with Blueberry! I thought one of them wasn’t going to give her back!

Then we decided to head back home. I get home, and the first thing I see when I walk in the door is a butter wrapper. What the hell? I had apparently left a box of baking supplies on the coffee table when I left. Clover had somehow gotten up on the table, into the box, and then into the butter box, pulled out one stick (JUST ONE!), and eaten the entire thing. She then proceeded to puke butter all over the apartment.

Let me just say that half-solidified dog butter puke is the worst thing I have ever tried to clean up in the life. And I’ve dealt with meconium. This was just awful, and I was gagging, and it was just everywhere.

My dog is THE. WORST. At least she’s cute.

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Anyone still want her?

Baby Shenanigans and Dog Drama

That’s right, shenanigans have been declared!

We got out lovely Christmas trees over the weekend, and believe it or not, Blueberry hasn’t gone for them yet (at least not on my watch!). But Clover seems to think lying on the tree skirt in the sun is just the loveliest of past times. Which is probably is when you’re a 10-pound dog that’s terrified of people and other animals.

This morning after Jeremy fed Clover, Blueberry crawled over to Clover’s bowl, plopped herself down in front of it, and started picking all of the pieces of dog food out one by one and throwing them all over the floor. Clover stood just out of reach (as I said, terrified of people), whining that the baby was touching her food, but gratefully eating any flying pieces that came her way. Luckily I got over there before too much destruction was wrought, but good lordy! I was laughing pretty hard as I brushed off Blueberry’s hands and relocated her.

She has a habit now of heading straight for the sliding mirrors in the house if you leave her unattended for even a second. We have one sliding mirror at the end of the hallway, and another in our bedroom. Yesterday I went out to the living room to grab a diaper to change her, and left her in the bedroom. When I came back, I expected to find her digging through the little trash can next to the bed (another favorite past time), but as I glanced around the room, I didn’t see her. “Aww crap!” I thought, “Somehow I’ve managed to lose the baby in 5.2 seconds.”

I checked behind the door – no baby. I glanced around the hallway, wondering if I’d accidentally passed her up – no baby. Then I saw her move. She had crawled over behind the laundry basket to look at “the baby in the mirror” (the sliding mirror in the bedroom). She’s definitely crawling a lot faster than she was. She’s still not as fast as her friend L though, thank goodness! Good lord that kid has some wheels on him, and I am thankful for C2’s sake that he isn’t walking yet (though I don’t think “walk” will be in his vocabulary – RUN RUN RUN!).

We went on a trip to the tide pools over the weekend, and it was just perfect. The sun was just starting to sink low, and so the light was all golden buttery yellow, and the tide was super low. We climbed around on the rocks (Blueberry in her ring sling) for about an hour or so. Took a quick peek for a geocache that was supposed to be in the area, but with a 20-pound baby strapped to my chest, it was hard enough just climbing around and I wasn’t much help actually searching. We gave it up as a bad job after a short while. Jeremy actually snapped some pretty beautiful shots of the tide pools, and I shot a couple of cute ones of Blueberry.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

KODAK Digital Still Camera

Today we went for a walk at the park, and stopped by the library to drop off two movies that we had rented (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 1 and 2, since Jeremy just finished reading the books and hadn’t seen the movies yet). While we were there, we checked out the used book sale and bought Blueberry some “new” books for her library. We scored and got 17 for $5, all in GREAT condition! Most were .25 cents, but I did snag a couple of hardcover ones for .50 or $1. There was even a board book or two!

Blueberry has finally started showing some interest in food, particularly if we give her something to try while everyone else is eating. She went nuts for the mashed potatoes the other night, and today she was super excited to lick and mash on some baked zucchini. She isn’t really “eating” it yet, more just tasting and licking and exploring the texture of stuff in her mouth, but she is getting a bit of it.

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One of the first things she got excited for were these frozen berry smoothie packs. At our house we eat them like popsicles (way healthier for you than real popsicles!). Now if she sees one of us eating one, she freaks out if we don’t share it with her.

Blueberry is getting really good at pulling herself up on stuff now. Yesterday she pulled herself up on Me-Ma (my mom), and today she pulled herself up on Me-Ma’s dog, Porthos (a big silly basset hound who loves her to pieces!).

All in all, things have been going pretty good over here. Jeremy just got promoted at work, he’s back on the day shift, which is nice. Despite Blueberry deciding to go to bed later lately, she is still the sweetest little thing when she’s awake, and we couldn’t be happier with our lot in life. 🙂

What baby shenanigans or dog drama have you got going on at your circus?

Open Letter to All of the Well-Meaning Suggestion-Givers:

Open Letter to All of the Well-Meaning Suggestion-Givers:

I know you mean well. I know you are only giving me suggestions because you care about my kid, and me. I know that your words are coming from a place of love and caring.

But I need you to put yourself in my shoes. I need you to hear your words from my seat here, trying to rock my child to sleep.

What you are saying is, “Why don’t you just ___?” What you mean is, “I hate seeing your baby cry, and I don’t know how to help.”

What I hear is “Even though I am not your child’s parent, I know more about how to comfort her than you do.” And that is so incredibly hurtful.

This is not the first time you’ve asked questions like that. Last time was because of my choice of diapers (“Why don’t you just use ___?”). And it hurt just as much then. It hurts just as much every time you question any of my parenting decisions.

I try to brush past your question, telling myself that you didn’t mean to be insensitive, that you don’t know the wounds your words leave on my heart.

But then you repeat yourself, this time directing your words at my partner, the one who has gone through this entire parenting journey with me, the one who has given their own tears and sleep and made all of their own sacrifices for this tiny human we love so much. “Why don’t you guys try ___?” I can see him flinch as he looks at me, see my pain reflected in his eyes. He won’t let you know how much you’ve hurt him. Society has told him he needs to be a man, and these things are a woman’s domain. So I interject.

“This is how we do it.”

A few minutes pass in silence, apart from our poor baby’s unhappy fussing, as my partner tries in vain to rock her to sleep. And then you feel the need to speak up again.

“Seriously, I don’t understand why you guys don’t just ___.” I’ve had it. I have had enough.

There are a hundred reasons why we don’t do whatever it is you are suggesting we do. But all of it boils down to this: I AM doing the best I can for my child, whether or not you see that. THIS is the best way for us. For me, for my partner, and most importantly, for my child.

What you don’t know is the countless hours I have spent, while I was pregnant, and since having our baby researching and stressing and reading and researching more on every possible baby-related thing under the sun. The pros and cons of natural birth, C-sections, epidurals, and Pitocin; breastfeeding, milk supply, formula feeding, introducing the bottle, when and how to start real food (purees, baby led weaning, making your own baby food, organic vs GMO); sleep patterns and what is normal for children, how to get babies to sleep through the night, how to get babies that have days and nights switched around into a more adult-tolerant orientation; how to properly install a car seat, how long a baby should be rear-facing, and what are the safest brands to buy; cloth diapers vs disposable, the effects of chemical and other environmental factors on my child’s growth and development, what brands of diaper rash cream to use, how to treat yeast infections; how to handle time outs, tantrums, and throw up; what to do when your kid asks about Santa, the Tooth Fairy, and sex; how to kindly explain to your kid that no, they can’t marry Daddy, because he’s already married to Mommy; how to handle a pacifier, taking it away, and when to potty train; how to introduce TV and video games (or not), and how to navigate the tricky waters of too much screen time versus “I WANNA WATCH MORE SESAME STREET!”

Trust me when I say that I have done so much more research, and stressed about so very many things you do not even understand than I could ever tell you. Trust me when I say that my child’s crying tears at my heartstrings more than you will ever know, and I want my child to stop crying more than you ever will. Trust me when I say I have tried other methods – I’ve tried ALL the methods. And this is what works best for US. Trust me when I say “This is how we do it.” Don’t push. Don’t justify. Just accept that this is the way it is in our family.

If you don’t like that, go have your own children, and raise them however you want. I PROMISE you I will stay the hell out of it.

Sincerely,

Doing the Best I Can