March 30, 2011


For the most part, I try to keep this blog fairly light. I truly believe that you make your own happiness; that if you expect happiness and joy to come from external things, people, situations, you will never be happy. It is up to each of us as individuals to find the best in everything and it is up to us to make ourselves happy, hopefully making others happy along the way.

That said, there are of course days when I have difficulty finding the positive in a situation. As a mom, there are days that I feel entirely defeated and just want to curl up in a ball and sleep until the day has passed. I think it's normal to have days like this; you can't appreciate the good without experiencing the bad. But, for the most part, I try not to broadcast these days. Whining gets one nowhere, when you really think about it.

However, this is a blog I initially set out to write for my children, thinking that maybe someday when they have little ones of their own, they can read about my experiences in parenting and find some advice, some laughter, some solace. So, if I write only about the good, I feel like to a degree I am selling them short. Parenting, while the best job in the world, is also hard work. And there are days that I feel highly unqualified. Like today.

Audia's been sleeping in her toddler bed since September. The transition went much more smoothly than expected, and for the most part she's been a good sleeper. There were a few weeks at the beginning of the year where she was waking up wanting to get into bed with us a couple of times a night, and also a week where she wouldn't stay in bed when we put her to bed, but she seemed to get over both situations quickly once we found the 'solution' to both. The past week and a half, however, has been rough. Beyond rough. Maybe (probably) it's because I'm pregnant, but I am having a much harder time this go-round than I did the past couple of times.

Audia's been waking up 5+ times a night asking for "one more kiss and hug" or for her ocean to be turned back on or for us to fix her blanket. If we don't respond, she escalates to the point of screaming bloody murder, which in an apartment is not an option to let her do. So we have to respond to some degree, and it seems the only thing to get her to go quietly back to sleep is to do what she's asking for. I know...spoilage, right? Thing is that even if we do what she asks, she wakes up anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour and a half later asking for something else. I am at my wits end. "They" say not to make bedtime a battle or a negative thing by getting upset or punishing, but I am really at a loss for what else to do at this point. None of us are getting the sleep we need, and the less sleep I get the less tolerant I am during the day of typical toddler misbehavior. The less sleep Audia gets, the more she misbehaves. It's an endless cycle that is essentially making me feel like I am losing my mind.

I read somewhere a while ago about how mothers (though I am sure some fathers do this, too) tend to blame their child's misbehavior on themselves but attribute good behavior to the child. Essentially, they tend not to take credit for good behavior but still blame themselves when things go awry. I certainly find this to be the case. Audia is one of the sweetest kiddos I know; she has so much love to give, and expresses it constantly. She is (most of the time) well-mannered and considerate and not to mention a total smartie pants. But I see this as her. It's who she is. But as soon as she misbehaves, I wonder what I'm doing wrong and where I can improve. And I know that all kids misbehave. I know it's just a part of learning and growing. But I still can't help but feel like I am failing at parenthood when she has an ongoing issue such as this bedtime battle we've been having. And it certainly makes me question how the heck I am going to manage TWO children.

As a side note, I must say that through it all I feel so incredibly lucky to be married to a man who is as amazingly supportive as Chris. He has been the first to get out of bed to tend to the munchkin almost every night, regardless of the fact that he has work the next day. Every evening and for a good portion of our weekends, he essentially takes over parenting duties to give me a break. And he does it because he wants to, not because I've ever asked him to (I've never had to.) He fully embraces his roll as daddy. I couldn't be more proud to be married to such an amazing man.

March 6, 2011

Audia's First Haircut

So, I know I said a while ago that I was going to let Audia's hair grow until she was old enough to ask for a haircut herself. I truly had full intentions of following that; personally I think little girls with long hair are adorable, and I had one terrible haircut for my entire toddlerhood; one that it took years to grow out to looking "normal." That said, Audia's hair was very fine and curly when she was born. Now, it is a bit thicker and straight. The past couple of months, the fine curly ends have been a total nightmare to comb through (though I must say, completely adorable when they were tamed!), creating a huge daily battle between Audia and me just to get her hair detangled. So, Chris and I decided that we needed to at least get the ends trimmed off.

After doing a bunch of research online for places that cut kids hair, I figured Kids Hair would be the best option, especially for something as simple as a trim. I didn't want bangs or a bob or layers...just cut off the darn curls so that her hair will stop giving us so much trouble! We figured a kids hair place would be best because hey, they work with kids every day and there are tvs with kids shows and toys and suckers to distract them, and mainly that they would know what they're doing. You think they'd, at the very least, know how to interact with a child, right? Yeah, that was my reasoning too.

We made her appointment for this weekend so that we could both be there. We went 10 minutes early so she could see the other kids getting their hair cut and have a chance to take it all in. Unfortunately for us, the guy who was going to cut her hair apparently knows nothing about children, or at least toddlers. When they called her name, I told him right away that this was her first haircut. We walk back to the chair and he, without even so much as saying "hi" to Audia or introducing himself, picks her up out of Chris' arms and puts her in the barber seat. Audia, of course, flips out and practically launches herself out of the chair, back into Chris' arms, screaming and crying that she wants to go home. We gave her a few minutes to calm down, but to no avail. She wanted absolutely nothing to do with the stylist after that, and who could blame her?

Long story short, I did it myself. After we got home, I searched you tube videos on how to cut kids hair, went out and bought some barber shears, and went for it. And, I must say, it went a lot better than I expected! She sat still the ENTIRE time, thanks to Toy Story, and I think it looks pretty darn good for someone who's never cut hair before. Now, here's hoping we can make it another two and a half years without a haircut!