February 23, 2013

In my dreams

A little known fact about me is that when I was younger...pre-kids, pre-husband, I use to day-dream or rather "night-dream" about houses. Not boys or mushy stuff.... houses. That's right. One of the only ways for me to fall asleep at night was to create floor plans. Mansions, houses, cottages, lofts....and then  when I got  a design I particularly liked I'd spend night after night decorating the rooms.

I'll have to ask my Mom, but I think I may have gotten this trait from my Mema? I vaguely remember hearing that she use to do this too...

Anyway, we've recently found a house in San Antonio that we'll most likely rent ( the paper work is just waiting to be signed), and I definitely hope it ends up that way because if we dont then I've wasted a LOT of time! You see, as soon as this house entered my radar as the one we'd probably be living in...my old tendencies kicked back in...you know, the ones I'd lost when I had serious worries to think about at night rather than fanciful dreams...

So, as soon as we decided on the house, and our friends Deb and Bonnie went to look at it and gave it their thumbs up on our behalf, I started piecing together the floor plan by going through the pictures and working out how the rooms probably fit together. And THEN I found this totally awesome app on the ipad that I think is called "room planner" ( I don't have it in front of me).  That allowed me to even put in the dimensions of the rooms and after much scrutinizing of pictures I finally had a floor plan ( minus the bathrooms and the closets in the extra bedrooms...I still havent figured out how they fit) that I think is basically what the house looks like. 

Then once I had my floor plan, it looked rather empty. And this app JUST SO HAPPENED to let you put furniture into the rooms, and it let you change the dimensions of the furniture...and so that's how I ended up running around my house measuring all my furniture, and then inserting it into my make-believe house! Except this time it's supposedly real! Oh what fun! 

Yes, lets just say that's how I spent Tabitha's feeding sessions for about two days straight! I'm definitely excited about a new house to get creative in! I realized that being an Army life has allowed me, in a much more practical, less fanciful, way live out my daydreams...in our five years of marriage we'll have moved 4 times not counting this move and each time I've had to piece together a new home, and I've loved it! Of course this time around I've got a toddler and a 2 month old to contend with so I think the love will be a little less pronounced. For instance, yesterday I had a baby sitter and Brett ( for a little while) at home and I STILL didnt get all the things I wanted to get done accomplished. Seriously. How in the WORLD do people get things done with two children?! Some moms even add work to the equation!! HOW?!?! HOWWWWWW!?! Luckily for me we'll have movers who will pack us and move our stuff otherwise I don't even think this move would be physically possible. Just getting basic prep done for the move is just about maxing me out. That being said, just 3 more weeks in Georgia!! 

Here was the house when I was in the process of moving furniture around....stay tuned for the finish product...and hopefully the real thing ( as long as we survive!)!

( if you click on the plan, it should open up a bigger version, if you're curious)

February 07, 2013

Something about pride and falling...

Today I had to have a little repenting moment....A baptism if you will. And I say "baptism" because there was a lot of water involved. This was no sprinkling, we're talking a dunking.

Anyway, before I get too carried away in my metaphors, let me just say that I've now been a mother of two by myself for almost two weeks. I've had one or two really bad days, and a bad moment or two pretty much every day ( have I mentioned that Tabitha does not like to be put down when she's awake?! Yeah. Not cool...if anyone has any suggestions I'm all ears...she does not like the vibrating seat that Ransom so adored when he was her age...sigh). But all in all, we've made it unscathed. And I've even kept up a pretty basic routine. And so yesterday I was driving somewhere and I was looking at my clock thinking how I was going to be right on time to keep with my awesome schedule I'd created for myself, and I gave myself a major pat on the back...and then ( here comes the bad part) I started comparing myself to others. I thought about how totally awesome I was and that I was able to arrive to events on time and with two kids in tow, fully clothed, me looking ( sorta kinda) decent, and I thought, "man, I've got this parenting of two thing down pat!" 
  *side note: Lets not even get into the fact that, thanks to my wonderful mother-in-law and terrific friends I've hardly had to make a full meal by myself yet....also, my house...its not exactly what we'd call "clean"....but lets just forget that for the time being...

Then today, I was brought firmly down to earth when I decided to go to our library's storytime in a torrential down pour... As I was driving to the library in the pouring rain I realized that it was a baaad idea ( in fact, I had a hint that it was a bad idea when I was taking Ransom and Tabitha out to the car in stages...getting wetter and wetter as I went...), I started to visualize how we were going to get into the library and every scenario involved badness, yet my pride did not allow me to turn around...and sure enough, it was awful.

And by awful I mean, Tabitha in the stroller with a broken umbrella draped over her, an umbrella that became more and more broken with every new gust of wind, letting in more water....and then me trying to navigate said stroller with one hand while I held my heavy two year old and another umbrella in the other. Ransom kept slipping and the umbrella kept sliding and, well, it was horrible. 

THEN once safely inside the library I figured we were through the worst, but wrong again...Tabitha, who is normally napping during the next hour and a half, had a dirty diaper and woke up crying. So, I grabbed her up, and took her and Ransom into the bathroom in the hopes that I could quickly change her before storytime started....

Hey, have you noticed that there is a healthy echo in public bathrooms?!? Well, THERE IS... and imagine a screaming infant objecting to her diaper change...and now add in a two year old who is objecting to the infant-screams by screaming himself....Yeah. I can imagine that the people clear on the other side of the library were hearing us.

But, we finally wrapped up the diaper experience and headed into story time ( where all the moms looked at me with a mix of horror/disgust and pity. By this time story time had started but Tabitha had NOT stopped crying. And then there was Ransom who was excited about singing the Wheels on the Bus, but who didn't want his mommy to leave the room with his screaming sister...lets just say we were the center of attention yet again....

Ok, that's enough. I'm done with this awful story, but basically the bottom line is that I am NOT a perfect mother of two. I have a LOT to learn, and above all, I must remember that there is no perfect parent and I must extend not only myself but ALL mommies a ton of grace.

February 05, 2013

One month...and counting.

One month ago today Tabitha entered the world a healthy, teeny tiny little baby. She still is super tiny, but more importantly she's still healthy.

I've wondered a bit about why this last month has been SO. INCREDIBLY. AWFUL. When  it comes to my own health. I've spent at least two days every week at the doctor or dentist this whole month. UNCOOL.
And I've actually wondered whhhhhhy. ( not that there has to be a reason...) to Brett in a very mournful, whiny voice...a voice I'm currently trying to teach Ransom not to use ( so far we have not made any headway...wonder why?)

But then today as I was writing Tabitha's Monthly Letter I wrote almost without thinking that it was so that I'd be continually reminded that she  was still healthy. I can't say that I was continually reminded. There have been many days trying to clothe, feed, entertain and discipline two children that I've forgotten the miracle that is there...but its true. And so in the midst of being sick and bat-bait myself I hope maybe I'll better remember that all those trips to the hospital could have been about her. They could have been for her heart, they could have been us visiting her while she lay in the NICU....But they haven't been. And that almost makes my own little woes worth it.

February 04, 2013

An open letter...

This is my open letter to the maker of the two baby monitors that live in my home... They are made by the same company, they were roughly the same price and they are technically the same product, one is just discontinued and the other is the "newer" "better" version...
I'm talking about my Summer's Night and Day baby monitors. And in short, new is NOT always better..

I bought my first one back in 2010. It was a Christmas present for my sister, and since we're cool like that, and she bought me the exact same monitor, I fell in love with the monitor within just a few days. The picture quality was amazing, I could watch my child sleep ( or NOT as the case often was) in ease and calm knowing he was perfectly fine. And, even though there was some static ( mostly because we live on a military post where there is plenty of radio waves filler out there) I could still hear him well too. The really great thing was I could also take the baby monitor out to the mailbox, or even downstairs to my neighbors house during nap time and still see Ransom perfectly. The range was EXCELLENT, without any lag time ( which is really important when it comes to surveillance).  I love my monitor so much I bought it for two friends who were about to have their first babies and I recommended it to countless people... Lets just say, if I like you... I don't play coy, I tell evvvvvery body!

And then my second child arrived. Now MOST people just move their baby monitor from they toddlers room to the babies room, but that's not how I roll... I will watch Ransom until he asks me to stop, and even then I'll only CONSIDER stopping ( I'm kidding, but it IS true that I'm not ready to stop just yet). So, I went on amazon and ordered my new monitor.... I had to get a whole new unit because in the two years since I'd gotten my first one a "newer model" had been made and it was not compatible with the older one. THAT was annoying, but I figured, hey...they've got to make their money some how so I figured we'd just go with it for now....BUT THEN I got my new monitor and it was all sleek and smaller. It had buttons instead of scroll on and off dials, and it was missing the antenna. For the brief minute that it was still in the package I liked it better than my old clunky one....BUT THEN I TURNED IT ON.
While the screen seems to be the same size, the clarity that my older model has is just not there on the new one. And while the audio seems a tad bit clearer ( something that I find not important in my small house, where I can hear my children all over the house anyway....) the REAL kicker came when I carried my monitor from my bedroom into the kitchen. WHERE IT WENT OUT OF RANGE.
Now, friends, I do not live in a large house. We're talking smallish to mediumish in size ( those are technical measurements) and I feel like its ONLY reasonable that my baby monitor should at LEAST work within my own home! Forget about the mail box and the neighbors house ( my friends have moved anyway...), but MY OWN KITCHEN?!?? That's necessary! Also, even when I can get it to work in the living room, turn on the microwave in the kitchen and it will stop working.....MEANWHILE my old-school 2010 clunker is plugging away showing me great pictures of my son playing with his stuffed animals in his bed....It seems in my professional opinion that you opted to go with a "fancier" design and gave up on "quality" of the service your product is suppose to give. In my opinion that was a very very bad move.

So, to sum up, Summers....as a Mom when I order a baby monitor I care very little ( within reason) to design and sleekness, and I care a LOT about quality of picture ( since I AM ordering a video monitor from you, after all)...I did not order an iphone from you, I ordered a VIDEO MONITOR so I'll forgive you on design if you just give me practical usability. I'm very disappointed and I'm also living in horror that I've been recommending this product to people over the last year or so when the new model was all that was available and people were BUYING it on my recommendation only to have a sub-par product.  Sorry other new Moms...I'll make it up to you by recommending other things that actually ARE worth getting.

Love, Abigail