What a Week…

Was it really a week ago that I posted last? It can’t be. Sheesh. I’m apparently slacking in the blogging department.

In the last seven days High Heeled Mama has:

* Gone on a road trip to Asheville to spend some quality time with her high heeled sis and the peanut.

* Built FIRE! Oh yeah, we are strong women who don’t need men (ahem, a call to our dad to confirm our fire strategy doesn’t count, right?) to build fire and heat a really cold cabin! A special shout out to all those Girl Scout camp counselors – something apparently rubbed off.

* Freaked out at peanut’s first really high fever (102!) and proceeded to leave fun road trip with HHM’s sister to get him to a doctor’s office (note: he’s fine. Just a bad cold.).

* Sucked copious amounts of yucky goo from peanut’s nose.

* Been to the pediatrician, my OB/GYN (no, not because peanut’s getting a special present for Christmas so stop wishing that on me) and my family doctor (for my own infectious nose/throat disease that we’re apparently passing around the HHM household) in 36 hours.

* Baked cookies.

* FINALLY finished my Christmas shopping.

* FINALLY sent out my Christmas cards.

* Waffled about 800 times about whether we’re making the right decision to spend Christmas at home as a nuclear family and not going back to our home state.

* Realized today that yes, this is the right decision because otherwise I’d be freaking out about everything I haven’t done yet (um, like finish one hand made gift and wrap ANYTHING) and we’d more than likely have been in the car right now driving 6 hours to NC and probably irritated about it.

* Discovered that Joseph in our nativity scene is on the lam – seriously, every time we pass the display on the top of the shelf in our “breakfast room,” Joseph’s in a different place. (The display is in a high-traffic area so I think it’s just wiggling and he must be the only figure off balance enough to shimmy around our “stable.” But it’s still a little freaky!).

So what have you all been up to in preparation for Christmas?

We’re looking forward to an evening of decorating cookies, wrapping presents and finishing up that last present I need to make. Although it is bittersweet to not be going home for Christmas Day (could I hear “Home for the Holidays” one more time this season?!), we are really looking forward to a relaxed Christmas morning with our peanut. And, of course, we are looking forward to our extended visit with our families without the pressure of seeing everyone (and trying to squeeze in a 3 hour nap for peanut) all in one day. Instead, we’ll have multiple opportunities to see folks and in a more relaxed manner meaning more treasured memories for our little guy (and by memories, I mean the stories we’ll tell him when he sees the pictures later in life).

Happy Holidays!

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Separation Anxiety

I admit it. I’m a pretty lucky mom. Peanut is, and always has been, a very laid back kid. As a newborn, we were waking him up for feedings. There are few foods he’ll turn his nose up at. He is fairly easily entertained with a book or a stick or a plastic cup or a drawer of spices. And he has never made a peep of complaint when we’ve left him with a sitter.

Lately, he’s been a little more clingy than usual. He’ll hang on my legs in new situations and has been slow to warm up to the teacher in this session of our music class. And our visit to Santa this week did not go well (oh, we were so happy in the line. Moms were complimenting me on how well-behaved and happy peanut was while we waited. And then I placed him gently on the lap of the most wonderful looking Santa I’ve ever seen and peanut let out a scream and a cry of betrayal that is usually only reserved for Nurse Nancy at the pediatrician’s office when she gives him his shots. The pictures are priceless.).

So, as we headed out for the hubby’s office holiday party last night, I expected a little bit of a battle. We were using a sitter we had not used before and peanut’s been fighting a bit of a cold. After chasing the child down to give him a goodbye kiss and hug, peanut followed us to the door. I gave the hubby the ‘this could be the night’ look and we stepped out into the cold. We turned around to try to wave bravely to the little guy and promise we’d be back soon only to watch our precious peanut close the door on our faces.

I guess I’m the only one with separation issues!

Flush, I mean Plush Dolls

While doing a bit of online browsing for some sort of kick start idea of what to get the hubby for Christmas, I came across this.

Um, what?!

I’m open to peanut playing with dolls. I don’t think there is any reason to limit him to gender specific toys. After all, some of my favorite toys growing up were trucks and blocks, as well as my Barbies. But Pee and Poo dolls? Oh goodness. There is so much about parenting I am unprepared for (and so many potty jokes running through my head). How exactly do these help with potty training? Really. The more I think about the possibilities, the grosser it’s starting to sound.

The good news: they’re sold as a set. Like two pees peas in a poo pod.

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like…Memorial Day?

How is a gal to get any Christmas shopping and preparations done when it’s 77 degrees out in mid-December? Something isn’t right about wearing shorts and deciding to grill burgers for dinner because it’s too hot to turn the oven on (and I refuse to turn on the A/C in December since our ghetto metal-frame windows are painted shut and won’t open) while trying to do some online Christmas shopping. Not to mention the new dilemma of what the peanut should wear for his picture with Santa tomorrow when it’s going to feel more like Easter than Christmas.

Ugh.

Fitting Mommy Into a Box

Peanut LOVES boxes. I’m sure this is not unique to my little guy. But give this kid a present and he’s much more interested in the box it came in, putting things in the box, taking things out of the box, getting into the box, getting pushed around in the box, climbing out of the box, putting the box on his head, banging on the overturned box, whatever his little mind can conjure up to do with a box. Me, I’m pretty indifferent to boxes, I guess. They’re great for storing things. We have a few in our living room right now I’d like to get rid of (hint, hint to the hubby!). But beyond their functional purposes, a box is just a box.

Until I have to put myself into one.

I’ve been invited by the hubby to join LinkedIn. I’ve avoided the whole Facebook thing. (I know, I must be the only person NOT on Facebook. I just have a weird thing about it that I can’t really explain. Not to mention this.) But LinkedIn sounds more practical – a visual, online representation for business contacts. As a former salesperson, I’m all about who you know (and who who you know knows). And one of these days I’d like to get back into the game – not sure what game I’d like to play yet, but I’m more than confident that the folks I know from jobs and relationships past will be instrumental in getting me started. So I clicked to accept my invitation. Only I’m faced with the following choices:

“I am currently:
-employed
-a business owner
-looking for work
-working independently
-a student”

Hmmmm…none of the above? Writing the neighborhood newsletter, coordinating a social gathering once a month and ranting on this blog don’t really pay the bills, although they feel like work – work in a good way. Work in the way that is making a connection with people and allows me to write. And I won’t even get into how the day-to-day mothering tasks are work, I think we all get that any mom is nurse, teacher, maid, chef and so much more to her family.

But how do I represent that in a box?

And why is this always such a hot-button issue for me? The hubby’s office party is coming up and I am already dreading the small talk. Saying I’m a stay-at-home-mom seems so incomplete and can sometimes stop a conversation dead in its tracks. Mom certainly is a large part of who I am, but it doesn’t define me. There is an oh so much more complicated answer to that question. Like most labels, they aren’t the complete picture.

So I suppose I’ll check off working independently (although the peanut would probably disagree since our day-to-day life is totally dependent on his attitude) and start working on building some new boxes. Boxes with lots of compartments.

I might even let the peanut play with them.

How I’m Letting Go This Holiday (aka: Why I let the hubby string the Christmas lights)

I thought giving up our hosting duties at Thanksgiving would give us a more relaxed Christmas. Nope. Instead, I left my parents’ house and started panicking that I had made a terrible mistake to spend Christmas two states away in our own home. I have instead spent the last week feeling crappy and therefore wondering how I’ll ever have the time to get “everything” done to make this a wonderful, Norman Rockwell holiday for our little nuclear family.

And then, when I got to thinking about it while struggling with how to rearrange our furniture to fit our Christmas tree (small house + toddler means not a lot of realistic options) and fighting with the Christmas lights, I could not define specifically what “everything” was. So I took a deep breath, let the hubby put the lights on the tree, took over the task of feeding peanut his snack and made a commitment to give up all unnecessary tasks. The only things making it through are the ones that allow our family to enjoy this time together.

Let me point out that this is not an easy decision to make. I am an admitted control freak (I can already hear my mom, dad and sister raising their eyebrows and chortling in unison). Letting the hubby put the lights on the Christmas tree was a big deal for me. The lights are my favorite part and I like them done a certain way. After only a few butt-in comments, I can say, he did a great job and I could focus on getting the rest of the decorations out so we could all spend a nice, quiet dinner together.

So I passed my first challenge. The second was deciding to give up the Christmas letter. Our year hasn’t been THAT interesting to make a run-of-the-mill letter compelling and so I’ve decided to not spend the time brainstorming some creative way to share our adventures that will only stress me out and occupy my thoughts day and night. Who knows what the next challenge will be, but I am confident that as long as I keep in mind what I truly want for Christmas (quiet time with my family), I’ll make the right choices.

Now if only I could figure out what to get the hubby for Christmas.