2013

2014 Already?

2014
Wait, it’s what date???

Yeah, that kind of sums up 2013 for me. Malcolm Tennant made his fairly dramatic arrival on August 2nd, and once that happened life just became a bit of a whirlwind and I had a hard time catching my breath. He’s an incredibly easy, happy baby, but even having the Happiest Baby Ever has been a big adjustment. I went back to work at the end of October, and after that it was like the holidays just came from out of nowhere, catching me completely off guard. Thank goodness for wine and Amazon Prime is all I can say.

I want to think that life will settle down in 2014, but Paul and I have decided to take the plunge and have one more baby, and as I’m not exactly getting any younger, the plan is to do it soon. Like, as soon as possible soon. Given how difficult the small age gap(17 months) was with my older boys, the irony of again wanting 2 under 2 again is not lost on me. If Paul hadn’t turned out to be such a natural at the daddy thing I’d probably be ready to stop with Malcolm, but he has absolutely amazed me at every step, being as hands-on and willing to be involved as a guy could possibly be. Quite literally the only thing he doesn’t do with him that I do is breastfeed, and that’s only for lack of equipment. (It has been such a refreshing change from the “Well, I can’t feed them so I can’t really help” attitude of my last marriage.)

With that in mind, I am NOT resolving to lose weight in 2014. I met my goal of losing the baby weight in 2013(plus a few which I promptly gained back over the holidays), and I was happy with that. I’d like to work on getting myself healthier for the next pregnancy, but I feel like anything more will probably be setting myself up for failure.

With Malcolm finally getting to the point of not hating the car so much I’d like for us to start getting out more again. Mardi Gras is on the horizon, and I was too tired to do any parades last year, so that’s a big goal for this time. I miss the trips to the mall, and spontaneous jaunts to Pensacola and trips to Birmingham. I also want to see more of our friends this year.

The usual goal of reading more and getting organized still stand, and this year I am adding the desire to spend less time on menial tasks like grocery shopping. Better meal planning means less trips to the store, and I am setting up Amazon subscriptions to have the non-food items we often forget delivered to the house on a monthly basis. I swear at least 50% of our after-work trips to Walmart are for things like cat food and toilet paper! Having them sent to us regularly should mean less trips out and less money spent on impulse items.

There’s probably a few more I could add, but keeping it simple worked for me last year, and hopefully will this year as well. Hope everyone has a healthy, happy New Year!

Happy Mother’s Day to Those Hallmark Has Forgotten

Mother’s Day has always been something of a hard day for me. I am one of those horrible people who chooses not to have a relationship with her own mother, and while I don’t regret it for a second, it makes Mother’s Day somewhat bittersweet. As I log into Facebook tomorrow I will get to see half a million status updates of people thanking their moms for being so wonderful, pictures chiding people that they should always appreciate the woman who brought them into this world, and thank goodness I don’t have cable, because I’m pretty sure the Hallmark and FTD commercials would be enough to put me over the edge.

Not every mother is wonderful, and not every person who gives birth is worth celebrating, and there are many, many people who should be recognized on Mother’s Day but aren’t.

I was in Hallmark today, and I didn’t see any cards recognizing those who should be mothers, but through battles with infertility are not…yet.

There was also a lack of cards for those who have been pregnant but suffered losses, and those who have lost a child.

You won’t generally find cards for women who are non-custodial mothers, those who are estranged from their children for their own health and sanity, or those who have given children up for adoption.

Not every mother or those who wish to be fit into the standard soppy holiday mold, but know that you are thought of, and appreciated, nonetheless. I wish you love and peace on this bittersweet day tomorrow.

The New Years Resolution Post That For Once Isn’t Full of Bullshit

In the past I have been the queen of the New Years resolution. I love making them, and feel like there is always room for improvement. Even if you don’t keep them, there is a lot to be said for making goals and striving to stick to them.

2012 was an amazing year for us – Paul’s immigration stuff got finished, he got not one but two long-term consulting jobs , we got a great visit with my mother in law, I got to spend more time with my family, and we found out we are expecting a new arrival next August. We are happy with the rental we are in, and everyone is healthy.

We did ok keeping our 2012 resolutions, which included things like getting the immigration stuff finished, preparing to get pregnant, and trying a new restaurant every month. So now I’ve hit a dilemma – what do you commit to change when life is going pretty well?

Losing weight is kind of the old stand-by, but being pregnant throws a bit of a wrench in that. I could try to commit to losing the baby weight by the end of the year, but will I really be happy putting that sort of pressure on myself so close to the holidays? I think not.

This year my goals are going to be more realistic. 2012 was all about change for us, I’d like 2013 to be more about slowing down to enjoy life.

I want to take more time to read. It’s something I greatly enjoy, and not having a ton of energy these days, it’s easy to do without much effort.

I want to de-clutter a bit and get rid of things that aren’t used. Not because I want a spotless house, but because I want to simplify, and useless things that just take up space are stressful.

I plan to eat healthier now that the holidays are over. Gaining weight is part and parcel of being pregnant, but I don’t do myself any favors by eating poorly, and it just makes me feel sick afterwards.

Finally, I want to work on being kinder to myself. I’ve always said I want to lose x number of lbs, or read x number of books, or do this or that, but when life happens, all I see is that I didn’t accomplish what I expected to.

Overall I’d like to just stress less and enjoy more. I feel like sometimes we get so busy and so caught up in things that we forget to live in the now and do what makes us happy. Cooking good meals, spending quiet evenings with friends, having more meaningful conversations…This is my plan for 2013.