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Old 06-19-2007, 04:23 PM
 
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Originally Posted by dhinderliter View Post
NOOOOO!!!!! they aren't children! they're still just babies....its so hard for me to think that ds is supposed to be moving on.

i feel like such a horrible mom. ds is delayed in so many things and i know its because i am just not the kind of person who is on the floor always interacting and always talking. i enjoy my quiet time (although theres too much of it right now) and i just can't get myself to talk to the kids like i should. ds can't speak in sentences and hardly knows 50 words (he repeats everything just doesn't use them all), according to the early interventionist testing stuff he is only at a year/year and a half development for small motor skills, self cleaning/dressing, and barely 2 years with speach. i think this is why i feel sooo tired and upset all the time. we've been stuck at 1 year for 2 years! : and to top it all of i know that i am not really going to be able to change much with dd. the child play just drives me NUTS. i zone out and i just can't get down there to do the mind numbing repetitiveness that he requires. :

oh and yes i was just pregnant with my sept baby.....last year! lol

about your second sept. baby.

And it's NOT your fault that your ds is delayed. I never spent a ton of floor time with my kids either. I'm not great at "playing" either. Sometimes I find the activities my kids want me to participate in with them to be downright boring, honestly. I enjoy my kids in other ways, just being in the general vicinity, doing what needs to be done, or even knitting or reading, and interacting from time to time but not constantly. You can't be in constant interaction with your child, and there's nothing wrong with you having quiet time. My mom has worked with EI for years, and sometimes delays are just delays, or there are underlying issues, that very often have nothing to do with what parents do or don't do. I'm so sorry you're having a hard time. Please try not to feel guilty. It really isn't your fault!

Heather, Mama to DS(10) DD(7.5),DD(6)
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Old 06-19-2007, 06:03 PM
 
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Hi Heather! I remember your username. I joined this group when Thor was about 5 months old I think. Thereabouts. Then I found out that Meg and I are from the same hometown and she worked for my uncle. Small world, these internets!

Oh, and I agree with Heather, Danielle, try not to feel guilty!! Speech and other delays often don't mean squat when it comes to what the child will be like when they grow up! Whenever I start to feel like I'm not interacting with Thor enough I sit down and read 3-4 books with him. He loves it and so do I. When I get bored with the books we have I go buy or order some really good kids books. There are some great ones.

Meg -- Thor still uses a paci but we've pretty successfully gotten it down to only naps and bedtime. He will sleep without it though, without much struggle. I've wondered lately if we should totally get rid of them. I think if Cecilia doesn't show a ton of resistance, or resort to odd comforting behaviors (sucking blankets, her hair, etc.) then it's probably OK.

Jess, I hear ya, Thor also seems so ready for some kind of "school" although I resist calling it that. He's going to be in a very small coop preschool this fall (like 6 other kids -- it's brand new) and he is so excited. He often says he wants to go "RIGHT NOW!!" and then I have to explain it's not for a couple more months. I think it will be so great for him, and a good way to meet other kids in a small town that we're new to.

OK, both my kids apparently got up on the wrong side of the bed today (whining all morning!!) so I better go...

Mama to 3 kids. We live in a yurt!
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Old 06-20-2007, 01:22 AM
 
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Originally Posted by dhinderliter View Post
the child play just drives me NUTS. i zone out and i just can't get down there to do the mind numbing repetitiveness that he requires. :
I hardly ever play with E. I do talk to her all the time (because I don't have a choice), but I've never really gotten into the playing thing. My Mother plays with her.

I look at it this way, I'm her Mama not her playmate. We do a sort of *parallel play* where she plays next to me while I do something else. I will throw out an idea or two to her if she's stumped. This article explains it well (it is a religion-based website, and I can't say I've read much of anything else on it).

So no need to worry about it, Mama. You're not alone.

Samantha, Mama to Elizabeth, September 24, 2004
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Old 06-20-2007, 01:17 PM
 
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I read books to T, but I guess I don't play much with him. My mom didn't play much with me, either. He plays with his toys and I do what I'm doing. Sometimes I play on the playground simply because I like to swing and climb

If you aren't into the religious context you can also read about the "work of children" (=play) in Rahima Baldwin-Dancy's book "You are your child's first teacher". Giving them the opportunity to play on their own and with other children with minimal adult intervention or direction (but with plenty of supervision) is a gift to children. At this age children are also in their imitative stage and the best thing to do with them is to give them an example of adults doing work so they can imitate it.

I am not very good at this, because I no longer do dishes by hand (halleluia), I don't iron, and the washer is in the basement where he isn't allowed because it's so nasty and dirty (we don't have finished walls). He does help me fold laundry (haha, he throws it around which actually makes me very angry!), and he "cooks" for his stuffed tiger. He has begun playing with his tiger like a doll, talking to it and playing games with it. He helps us with yard work and house-cleaning and with errands.

So I say, Danielle, cut yourself some slack and smile at your children and just be positive and loving. You've got a lot on your plate. If you are really fed up with the play maybe you want to hire a mother's helper to play with him one or two days a week? jen

: mama to T 9/04 and E 11/08
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Old 06-20-2007, 11:55 PM
 
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After WEEKS without internet or home phone, I'm so happy to be back in the current century!!! Gotta catch up, then I'm sure I'll have lots to say!
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Old 06-21-2007, 12:44 AM
 
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Becca! I was just thinking about you last night when I shut the computer off! I was supposed to remind myself to search the thread for responses from you -- since your such a regular poster -- but I forgot until you posted. Welome back!

Samantha, Mama to Elizabeth, September 24, 2004
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Old 06-21-2007, 01:43 AM
 
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thanks its nice to see that i am not the only one who doesn't sit and play.

i just have to b*tch for a minute. i wrecked the car 2 weeks ago and am awaiting the insurance check which is becoming a pain in the arse. the guy was supposed to OVERNIGHT our legal stuff to sign last FRIDAY and i called today (you know its been way over a day) and he didnt SEND IT AT ALL! : he was super nice on the phone but unless you are talking to him and constantly reminding these people they just don't do a darn thing. so the package is being mailed out and we will get it tomorrow (i got a tracking number this time). will have to have dh squeeze it into his schedule SOMEHOW to get the thing notorized which dh will promptly forget about unless i hold his hand the entire way. make everything HARDER now by having dh working 6 a.m. to god knows when so the only times he can get a public notary is during his lunch hour. doesn't sound hard right? ok well since i wrecked the car i have no car so after much searching and b*tching and crankiness i found that enterprise waives the $25 daily fee for under 25 drivers so i am going to rent a car for tomorrow and friday and CRAM a ton of stuff in (which make kids super cranky)......now we live on the military base so not just ANYONE can help because they have to be signed in to the gate in order to get to my house or have a military id. so that leaves dh driving us on his lunch to get the rental car AND hopefully the papers he needs to sign will be here and he can get them sent out the same day. now on friday dh goes to SP duty which means he is going to work 12 hours a day for the next 7 days....that includes the weekend. so on friday we have to return the rental car at 8 p.m. then i get to do all the parenting for the whole weekend too. who KNOWS what tests next week will bring. put on top of all this that i don't have any really good friends here nor family and i am just so frusterated and tired and anxious over everything that needs to be done. i have court on july 3rd and i MUST get some papers signed, notarized, and generally a lot of stuff to do before i can go to court and i am not even sure WHEN we are going to be able to buy a car! : the car i want is in peoria (2 hours from here) and of course we have to go with dh so it won't be until the 29th before we will have TIME to go and get it (if they still have it and they come down in their price AND i don't have to ride the insurance companys butt the whole time). can we say cutting it close to court? :

hi becca!! nice to have you back in the technologically advanced world!
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Old 06-21-2007, 12:16 PM
 
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Things have been so busy lately. This end of the school-ear stuff is for the birds! I have been running like a maniac to get to all the events. Today is the last day and I cant wait!!! So, I have been reading, but not posting.

Mamabear ~ I am so excited for you! I have a friend who just had twins! So cool!

Meg ~ So cool to take a trip to Alaska! Traveling can be trying with children. My parents really want me to come to them in FL, but with four now, I can't even imagine it!

I played more with Owen and Zoey, but once we had Zeke, I felt too tired and to overwhelmed to sit down with them all and play. I feel the same as you dhinderliter. Zeke is way more independent in his play and I really love and appreciate that! Plus, He loves to do stuff around the house because that was how he spent the first 2 years of his life -- following me around, or in the Ergo while I did jobs around the house. He loves to garden and dig in the dirt. And lately he's taken to going over to my neighbor's when she is sweeping her deck. He brings his own broom and helps her out!!! She just loves it!

Zeke was pretty delayed in his speech too. Zoey has a speech therapist for articulation issues and she was pretty worried about Zeke. I told her I felt like he was just developing at his pace. In the past few months he has acquired a lot of words. I'm sure he would still be considered delayed, but it coming along. I don't worry about it.

I have no idea how much Zeke weighs or how tall he is!!! Numbers just aren't my thing and we haven't been to the doctor in awhile. I get so much joy from him. He makes me laugh all the time. He is just transitioning into 3T clothes. This morning he brought his baby out of the crib and put him in Eli's exersaucer. Then he made me get out Eli's playmat and put his baby on the playmat. He brought toys for the baby. The he said, "Oh no! My baby frow up! All over! Oh no! Mama, Help!" I was laughing so hard!

I am struggling with the transition as I learn to parent an older child. Owen will be 7 in November! He is really wanting to become his own person. Philosophically, I understand, but it is so hard when he wants to do all the things that are so far from our value system. I find myself jealous of the parents with kids who aren't challenging everything about the parent! The latest struggle is that Owen wants a Webkins. In case you haven't heard of this new craze, they are plush animals that come with a code. You go to the webkins website and enter in the code and the your webkin has virtual life -- a home, friends, etc and you have to buy food and other things for it and figure out how to earn money. I am so not into this! We are a pretty low media family. The kids have occasionally played on the computer (I could probably count the number of times on both hands) and they watch a tiny bit of TV and see few movies. I am not going to get a toy that encourages any kind of computer use! He is insisting that he wants it and it's not fair, blah, blah, blah. Finding the balance is so hard, but his is a non-negotiable for me. I am encouraging him to find something else that is more positive, but he is being relentless.

I am so looking forward to summer and not running around like crazy! At 3:30 today, school is done and I can relax (as much as one can with four kids!).

Here is a link to my wesite http://web.mac.com/zen_ozze/iWeb/zen_ozz/Welcome.html

There are some cute videos of Eli. And a link to my photos page . . .
http://www.flickr.com/photos/kristinb769/

Hope everyone has a great day!

K
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Old 06-21-2007, 12:44 PM
 
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whew! Hey all!

Christine: COngrats x2!!! Twins - how scary and exciting! PM me if you're up for a playdate with RObin - we're in Atlanta now (near Emory) and eager to play! ALso, let me know if there's anything I can do to help - I'd be happy to come take V to the park with us so you can get a nap or go unencumbered to a MW appt.

Which I can do safely now b/c....I finally bought a new (used) minivan!! It was a bit of a challenge logistically to buy, but it only took a few days to totally spoil me - I had to drive the 'burban through ATL traffic for hours on monday and the no A/C and the headliner foam flecking all over us really grossed me out. Danielle - your car-buying logistics sound even worse than mine - it's so frustrating trying to juggle too much to do with too little help. hugs.

Size - Robin was about 37-38 inches and 26-28 pounds last time I checked. She's getting taller and her feet are finally outgrowing her size 7s. But she's still in 2T - anything bigger falls to the floor. She can wear 3T dresses and a few tops, but the arm holes are quite big. My 1 year old nephew is the same weight and nearly same height! Eli is quite long/tall, but his weight seems to be levelling out.

Augs - Robin is a bit lonely also. In COlumbus, we saw her cousins regulalry, plus would go to the park and storytime at the library where there are lots of other kids. Without phone or internet, I've had a tought time finding places to go and things to do with other kids. We have 2 parks nearby, one a good walk, but the likelihood of other kids being there and wanting to play is hit-or-miss. But we've found a library story time to try next week, and I'm going to sign her up for weekly gymnastics/play gym classes. I think she'll really love it.

Swim lessons - we did a "mommy and me" at the Y last summer, which was fun but thoroughly un-instructuve. The lessons we did this summer were with a private instructor at her pool. She has a multi-year program - we got in this year (her last 3 spots for robin and her cousins), so we're automatically in for next year. The teacher's main focus this year is teaching them to swim to the side and get out of the pool by themselves. SO they weren't allowed to use the ladder or get help - had to pull themselves up the wall to get out. and She didn't focus on technique other than getting them to flatten out and kick - so they swam underwater (each year she focuses more on technique and different strokes). By the end of the class, Robin could jump off one side of the pool and swim to the other and puller herself out. Not that she would do so willingly - it involved serious tears. But we spend as much time as we can at the river and lake - I'd rather her cry through swimming lessons and have some survival skills. We went to our new local pool for family night last week, and hope to go again tonight. turns out that despite hating swimming lessons, Robin really likes to swim! The pool technically doesn't allow any floats, but they let us bring in a ring float that RObin and Eli shared last week - but after a few minutes RObin let eli have it so she would swim with Daddy.

Danielle - I don't think you are to blame or that anyone is to blame for Ethans' delays. Kids do all develop differently, and I've heard that studies show that early and late talkers are pretty much indistinguishable by mid-elementary years. My friend who's in ECE says that the very best thing you can do for your child is to talk to them - just narrate what you are doing as you go through your day. ANd read to them. Like Samantha - I'm talking to Robin *constantly* b/c at this point I have no choice - she is extremely chatty. I partly wonder if I took the whole talking a lot thing too far - especially since now I'm trying to start running again with the kids in the double jogger, and am having to answer questions while running and pushing them both. That's more than I can swing!

Anna - glad you had a good visit with the fam. Sorry to hear you are still fighting the ear gunk! I hope the meds work. I hate to ask, b/c I'm sure I know the answer, but have you seen a chiro about it?

Meg - My advice on travelling is to check as much as you can. And I think carseats may only not count as carry-on if you gate-check them - check with your airline. I've heard many testimonials that gate-checked strollers come out fine - but I'm sure your bag will help. Also, do you have a family member or friend who could loan you a PNP or buy you one at a consignment store for cheap? Might be less of a hassle than taking one. I personally would do without for that short a trip rather than hoss it to the airport.

carseats - we have 3 graco comfortsports. The year we got them, they were in the top 3 seats rated for safety (including britaxes, etc.), and they have been very easy to use and comfortable for Robin. our baby bucket is a Baby Trend latch/lock, which was also in the top 5 infant seats and one of the few to pass the recent controversial 37 MPH test. I can see that britaxes look very nice and comfy - but they aren't the only safe seat in the world. We need multiple seats (multiple cars, and extended family often riding too), so we would never shell out $250 when one that costs $100 does the same job. : We also figured we didn't need one seat that would last until they're out of seats b/c we planned multiple children, so they will get lots of use anyway and we can stagger their use. We already have a booster for Robin - a very solid Fisher Price one that I have adored when using it for my neice. But she's got a while longer in her graco's, then Eli gets them too.

We also have to figure out a school situation for Robin for this year. Atlanta has a Waldorf option, which is way too expensive. There's also a good quaker school (a friend in college did a study on girls and self-esteem at the school that really makes me want to send my girl there) - but it's also too expensive. There are numerous montessori options, but not sure about their costs and how closely they follow a montessori model. And there are a handful of church preschools around too. We've had good experiences with church shcools in the past. Although they often don't follow an educational philosophy, they are small and not attached to a day-care, so they can end up being pretty close to a model that I would pick. I think there are actually too many choices!

Clint's father's day celebration was that we went camping on our new river property - with his dad, mom, 2 brothers, neice and nephews and even SIL for a while too. MIL, FIL and BIL were in a tent, BIL, SIL and kids in the truck camper, and Clint, me and the kids in the back of the suburban. Clint has a matress that he keeps rolled up in the truck at all times "just in case I need to go camping on a moment's notice" . Of course, with the window's down we got swarmed with mosquitos the first night. MIL had a huge mosquito net, so we used that the second night, but I'm still itchy all over. It was fun - but I'm glad I don't have to do it every weekend! Our gift to him was a waterproof duffel bag stocked with gear he needs for the river - bug spray and sunscreen (adult and kids), water bottle, crank flashlight, food, change of clothes, matches, etc. And Robin also got him gummy bears.

K - gotta pay attention to the kids!
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Old 06-21-2007, 01:23 PM
 
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Becca; I just have to say that you and Clint sound like you would be totally fun parents.

Danielle; I don't play alot either... and the kids at this age fluctuate between really fun and really not fun- even if they are on 'target.' But I can totally hear where you are coming from- it sounds frustrating. Who knows, though, sometimes things that are a block for a long time all of a sudden change, especially as they grow in the summer time. Here's to hoping....

And the car! HOW awful! I would be freaking out also. You know, I have given up LOTS of independence with the kids and I am okay with it- but I have to have wheels!

Carseats; I put the Graco Cargo into my moms car and Greg's truck for Celia. It's great and she still has a long way to go on the top slots, height wise. It is lightweight and easy to get a good fit with.

The comfortsport rearfacing I hated; just didn't fit well. The way they are making the base now is wacky. So I'm going to try the Scenara. Carl is a tall baby, so I need more slot options than the Comfortsport gave me.

I like the Britaxes, but they certainly are not the be all end all. They are big and heavy.

Becca; right on with the PNP suggestion. I'm going with it.

Zen; good to hear from you!

An update on my Sept kiddo... she is doing okay without the pacis but I caved yesterday and let her get one from Target. She fell asleep with it and then I took it out of her mouth. I'm going to try letting her use it at bedtime, to fall asleep and then that's it for the rest of the night. But we'll see. It's been traumatic; mostly because Cecilia and I are a battle of wills. Alot. Is anyone else like this with their kid? : How long does this child intend on testing me? DON'T ANSWER THAT!

Megan~ mama to Cecilia (9/1/04) Carl (11/19/06) Vivian (9/10/09) & spring 2011 baby.
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Old 06-21-2007, 01:37 PM
 
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Zen - We cross-posted. I totally understand what you are saying about parenting an older child, and I'm trepidatious. My good friend's son just turned 8 (or was it 7). She divorced when he was about 1, and for years it was jsut the 2 of them. She has since remarried and has a one year old (and jsut found out she's pg again!!). But I think it's been nice for her to parent just him for so long. now she's trying to juggle him and her 1 year old, and it's a totally different struggle. She's used to her DS getting all of her focus, and now that's not possible. But they also struggle with the peer-pressure vs. popular culture vs. their family's values and culture. He's pretty much a mix. They have steered him to lots of contruction/building type toys - including things that are mecahnized, but that he builds first. It's a big challenge, and they all work together on them. ANd computer games are a treat - a priviledge, not a daily event, if that makes sense, and they use discs not online games. And they try to stay out of the house when possible - but less easy with younger kids! Glad your days are settling down soon!
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Old 06-21-2007, 03:50 PM
 
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Robin just had a little leak in her panties, and as I took them off, she said, "I had an axydent, but that's Okay! My mom Luuuuuvs cleaning them up!"

I just got a call that I'm okayed to volunteer next week doing child care for a national conference (the US Social Forum). They have limited spots for kids, so Robin would take one of those, but they need the help. It's partly hosted by the non-profit I used to work for, so I'll get to see some old friends, and Robin can hang out with the children of radical lefties . It's a 16-hour commitment over 3 days, but I think it'll be fun. I say that, but it's going to be like 150 kids, all ages, and only 12 adults....

any other kids into monsters? Robin loves them and loves playing monsters. Right now I'm the mama monster with the baby monster (Eli) and she's the mama with her "kids" (her toys and dolls), trying to sneak up on me to take back the boppy.
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Old 06-21-2007, 04:04 PM
 
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Wow! I can totally not keep up here! I try to read the updated posts daily but I'm still behind.

We're in the midst of our first week of swim lessons. This is similar to what Becca posted - the focus is giving them safety skills. So Iain (the 2.5yo) is learning to float on his back and to turn to that position from being underwater. He's also learning to blow bubbles so he can swim underwater, too. He's still a bit freaked out by it, but doing better every day. Yesterday he flipped out when we got to the door to the swim club. And he screamed when the door to the pool opened and he had to go in. But he did really well in his class! He comes out crying, too, but then we talk about how well he did and all the things he did and he gets happier very quickly!

My 5yo really freaked the first day. He was TERRIFIED! And he's gone swimming around pretty freely in our own pool, with a swimming vest on (one of those that's designed to "teach" swimming). By the second day, and after a LOT of discussion from all of us, he went ahead and obeyed his teachers even though it was scary. Then he LOVED it! In fact, he got up extra early this AM 'cause he's excited about going swimming again. They say the last days of the first week are good, and the 2nd week is the best, so I think we're on the upswing now.

My kids are very independent players, too. Of course they love it when we play together, and in fact, I do, too. I have trouble making myself "stop" everything else to get down with them, unless there's a specific thing we're going to do - like play a card game or board game or something. This isn't the case so much when they're infants, of course, but as they get older they have really done remarkably well playing creatively and independently.

I really totally love doing things with them, though, and for me that's mostly taking them out places. Whether it's a farmer's market, the children's museum, or out running errands, I have SO much fun with them! The last few weeks I've spent a lot of time doing these sorts of things. It means I haven't focused on things like running my business as much, but it feels great to be more and more connected to my kids, and to have time to really just enjoy them. The more relaxed the day, the better.

We've also discovered that we REALLY like having them one at a time. When G goes to Grandma's (which is more frequent), we just delight in the time with Iain. He's such a different child by himself! And that's a funny concept to me, because he's the 2nd and therefore almost never the "only." And likewise, when I have times to be with JUST Gabriel, it's wonderful. One of my favorite memories with him was taking him to a baseball game for his birthday - just the two of us! It was the best experience at a ball game I can remember, and we managed to do everything and not get stressed about any of it. (DH can be a stress ball!!)

Carseats - I have to agree on the ComfortSport being a PAIN rearfacing. That's what we bought it for originally (for my mom's car) and while I can sometimes get a great install with it, the adjuster is just impossible. Iain has finally hit 30lbs and so is now forward facing in that seat in my mom's car (Gabriel outgrew it a year or two ago and is in a SafeSeat GO), and it's rock-solid now and seems good.

My one qualm with the ComfortSport is the relatively short harness slots. I don't think it's a good option for long-term use for kids who will be fairly tall. Higher-weight seats like the Marathon/Decathlon/Boulevard, Radian, and GO also afford higher harness-slots, so kids can stay in them longer. My 5yo is at the crux of outgrowing his Marathon (he's 75% for height and 50% for weight!) and is still using the GO in my mom's car (it will conver to a booster, too, when that's necessary). We may well get him another harnessed seat - either the Radian 80 or the Regent - when it's time to move him. Iain, on the other hand, is still RFing in the Roundabout. I think he'll need to move out of that fairly soon - or maybe turn around. Or perhaps we'll move him into the Marathon RFing (more height that way) and move DS1 to a Regent, and keep them both as safe as I can! Ah, yes, carseat decisions are huge around here, too! I've debated and debated for HOURS about what to do when we've had to make a move!

Delays - Unless there's serious "abuse" type neglect going on, I don't think parents are to blame! My DS1 was evaluated for ECE (speech) at 2yo - he had barely 30 words in his vocabulary. He qualified on certain levels, but his *receptive* speech was so amazingly good (and we knew it was) that it balanced out his "delay" and he didn't qualify. We were told to keep an eye on him and consider bringing them back in for articulation, as he has oral motor strength issues. We started the process and then DS2 was born so we never followed up, but sometimes I think we should get him some help with the oral motor stuff.

DS2, on the other hand, is talking nonstop! It's AMAZING the difference! He clearly doesn't have the oral motor problems that his brother has, and it's made a huge difference. DS1 couldn't pucker his lips right for a kiss, but DS2 will occasionally start whistling! There's no doubt he's talking earlier and better than Gabriel was. It's just amazing to me! He has a huge vocabulary and it keeps growing, and it's so clear that he THINKS so much, because he can actually talk about it.

All that to say, each child is different! While parenting can have a positive or negative effect, I don't think parenting is solely to blame EXCEPT in those cases of severe neglect.

Okay, time to start getting ready for swimming! Have a great day!

HeatherB ~ mama to 3 wonderful boys:  reading.gif 03/02; modifiedartist.gif09/04; sleepytime.gif 09/07 - and Eliana, babygirl.gif 11/13/10!  
Founder of Houston Birth Alternatives: Be Informed, Encouraged, Supported birth support group and aspiring midwife.

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Old 06-21-2007, 10:00 PM
 
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Hi Everyone--

So glad to see this flurry of posting. I have so little time to post these days. the last month was so difficult. My dh is a teacher and it gets more intense at the end of the school year. I seriously don't think we've had a single hour together in the last month. And this winter with two (lulu and gingy -- who is now almost 11 months!) dang neared killed me!! :

This definately got easier as spring arrived and we got our swingset (purchased from Sam's club ... a playaround set, which is the cheap version by cedarworks... would definately recommend it) and spent hours in the yard. The winters are very long here.

But I have just been so exhausted the last month, like the cumulative effort it took to have to kids at home alone, day after day, really set in. I was fighting weird virus after weird virus ... and then I realized ... I need more rest.

Well, rest is hopefully what I will get this summer. My dh has the summer off and for the first time we don't have any mega-home-projects planned. I swear, for the last three years we had to pack up all of our belongings to: redo our windows, paint, add rooms, etc. Finally we are done.

But this SAHM thing does do a number on you. I don't even know what I want to do with my free time... I have had so little of my brainspace to devote to myself!

My guess is that I 'll spend quite a bit of my free time sitting (i.e. in meditation ... I borrow a couple of friends' cabins and sit alone for several hours) and doing reading in buddhism for inspiration. I realized this spring I've been practicing zen for about 17 years! Wow. I've had so little time lately, but in a sense, it makes it more intense when I do sit. I just throw myself into it like a desparate person -- the richest time spirtually for me.

Lulu is a trip. She's still into her astronaut /moon/rocket passion. Her spacesuit is her down snow suit. I literally had to hide it because she was insisting on wearing it when it was 80 degrees out. Now, I would let her do it when it was 70 ( i know the neighbors must have thought ... gee she really overdresses that child!!!) but when it gets mega hot, I was thinking she would overheat... plus her astronaut helmut is her ski hat! Oh my. We've found an online astronaut summerweight outfit for fifty bucks plus a helmut for 50 bucks. I have somehow been reluctant tho -- I wish I were a handy person and could make it myself.

Lulu is definately very strong-willed. We were suddenly finding ourselves in a mire of whining, screaming, oppositionality. Our overall approach has been an empasis on freedom and respect, but I knew I had to tighten things up. I have always felt that I can trust myself. When I resent something, I know it is wrong. I began to resent Lulu's imperiousness and demandingness. And extreme contrariness, at times.

I read a few books and began to be much more firm, especially on issues that I really cared about. I also began to offer a little less choice around certain things. Lulu definately did not like it. But remarkably, in the last few weeks since we've held firm, she has become so much happier. I am always wondering too much if I will dampen her spirit, but I haven't seen anything like that. She almost seems relieved or "held" in the best sense of the word. And she treats her wee sister gingy so much better ... this was an area I focused on a lot with her.

Gingy is a doll. She's just one of these happy, giggly beings you want to be around. Or, as my friend said, one of these beings you want to be!

Talk about giggles -- kristin-- I watched that video of Eli giggling --- ooooooohhhhh! He's adorable! And I looked at all the pics of your darling family. Wow. You did GOOD! I loved hearing your update, thank you. If you ever pass by here, you have to email me and stop by.... Where are you? I am down in Ulster Co. We might be journing up further north to meet Newfoundland (dog) breeders...

Yes, we have decided to increase our tribe by one: one Newfy. We have an ancient dear one who guards us and mostly sleeps all the time. She is such a love with the girls. Just today she let the baby into her food bowl as she ate (roasted chicken!!). No problem. We've decided to get another in time. once you've had a newfy... you'll never have any other kind of dog. They're just different. Soulful.

But the interview process is similar to adopting a child -- you have to apply, have an in person interview. Sometimes they will have someone do a home visit. You have to prove you own your own home/or get land lord approval. We are also considering adopting a rescue (instead of buying a pup) so we will go to the special rescue day in ct (eight hour round trip... definately weeds out the non serious people!).

My husband and I feel that if we adopt another dog it will quell our baby lust a little. We are trying to stop at two kids. So I am hoping all the black fur and drool (newfs drool and shed like crazy) will act as a contraceptive of sorts. Sorta magically.

I feel like I need some magic to keep from not getting pregnant. At 39, I feel like my body is crying to get preg again. I am in fear of having sex. Truly. I got preg so easily both times, I am afraid. Does anyone else have this? And there really is no ideal contraceptive. Except not doing it!! Hahahahaha.

Anyway, that's all for now. sorry for the long silence.

Liz

Kids. I got two of 'em.
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Old 06-21-2007, 10:37 PM
 
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Liz ~ So good to hear from you! I was thinking of you earlier in the week when there was flooding in the Catskills and I worried that you might have gotten hit again. Didn't you have some real damage near you last year?

I have to admit I am not a dog person. I have serious fear of dogs because I was bitten numerous times in my life. On a logical level, I know that that is often more about bad owner's than bad dogs (though not always), but the fear creeps up in me, and then I am afraid that the dog will sense the fear and react. But, very close friends had a newf -- named Bear -- and he was the most peaceful, calm, loving, and yes -- soulful --dog I have ever met. I have never felt more safe in the presence of a dog, but I did with him! It was very sad when he passed.

I have become extremely firm with the kids. It is the only way I can manage. But I too worry about squashing their spirit. and it becomes so much harder as they get older and want to do those things that just don't match up with the family's values. I have been ruminating about how to help them buy into the values that we have -- how to make them important to the children.

Thanks for the kind words on my family! We are in Saratoga Springs. If you are ever up this way definitely be in touch! And I will email if I go down near you.

Kristin
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Old 06-22-2007, 01:34 AM
 
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Saratoga Springs - there's a Waldorf school there. Used be called Spring Hill! I know this because the school where I used to teach is also called Spring Hill.

My friend Steph says this, and I am trying to believe it: only argue about what really matters. Does it matter if T wants to wear a pajama shirt all day? Not really. Does it matter if T wants to eat cake for lunch? Yeah, nutrition does matter. This works for me. It doesn't work for Jo. She believes in having the last word and she's a my-way-or-the-highway kinda gal. She also claims I reason with T too much instead of just telling him what to do, e.g. I will say "T, if you stand up on that wobbly chair, you could fall down." She'd just say "Get down!". I calculate the possible damage from if he really fell and then I figure that if it's not life-threatening to him or anyone else, then I'm going to let him have the experience.

Bummer times in our neighborhood, we think that our favorite neighbors are breaking up and that our more favorite of the couple is moving out, and another neighbor had her garage tagged (graffiti'ed) by a gang last night. Sigh...

I'm looking at the google ads on the side and thinking "pregnant ringtone? What the heck is a pregnant ringtone?" - "havin' my bay-bay... what a wonderful way to say how much you love meeeeeee..."

Anyway, good to hear from all of you... xo j

: mama to T 9/04 and E 11/08
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Old 06-22-2007, 03:02 AM
 
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must be baby fever or something! : i don't really feel done or that our family is complete with 2. everything is just to perfect and NEVER in my life have things been perfect so i am just thinking we should PLAN to have it unperfect! a boy, a girl, a dog, and dh in the military working day shifts...its just to pleasantville for me right now and i KNOW something is going to happen.....although it might be good i still worry. i know that doesn't seem to tye in with a baby....but to me it makes sense! i keep saying (to myself cause dh doesn't want to hear it). "100% of our children are not planned...whats the likely hood of haveing ANOTHER unplanned in the next 20-30 years before menopause sets in???" although there's snipping, tubes tied, and birth control there are reasons we can't/won't/don't want to do these b/c of time or money or both. i don't really want to have mirena for 20-30 years. we can't afford snipping until god knows when etc. if we have a 3rd kid then dh gets FREE snipping. i think that i would like to have 2 more but i know he won't go for that at all so i would comprimise at one more. i had also thought that we would wait 3-7 years and then MAYBE i could convince dh to have 2 more but i really really really like the thought of us having kids in college at 40 and dh retiring in 0-10 years and having our own lives w/o kids and still being incredibly young. thats how i see ourselves....3-4 kids, a nice house, a camper home, traveling to different bases like all the annoying old vets do now (god they drive me crazy!! : ), traveling and enjoying work if we have to work.

i really hope that we can have a planned pregnancy and dh will be happy about it.

sorry for the ramble.
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Old 06-22-2007, 06:12 PM
 
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Wow, you all are talkative lately!!

Hi Becca, glad you're back, and the camping trip sounds like fun! I can definitely relate to the mosquito problem. Poor Anna's head is full of bites. Around the cabin here they're really bad, so when the kids are playing outside she's always getting swarms of mosquitoes around her head. I swear I have to follow her around, batting away bugs. She's so bald they just love her baby scalp. She won't keep a hat on and I refuse to put repellent on them. Bug bites are better than repellent!!

Liz, great to hear from you too. Sounds like things are going along nicely. I hear ya about baby fever. It's weird for me because logically I do not want to be pregnant right now at all. Anna just turned 1, and she's still nursing a lot, and my life is sort of uprooted. I barely feel like I'm hanging on some days. BUT yet I often THINK about being pregnant and having another baby. I bet if I didn't have an IUD that I would be afraid of sex!

So my latest vision is to buy land in Homer and put a yurt on it. Live in the yurt for 1-2 years while we build a house. Then we'd have the yurt as a guest room. The largest one is 700 sq ft. They're around 10-14,000$ and there is a place that makes them in Homer and then there's on in Oregon. The Oregon ones are cheaper but you have to buy snow supports and insulators for AK. So maybe the AK ones are better to go with.

I'm totally into the idea... my cousin lives in a yurt in Homer and it's so cool. I think it would be so awesome to do it for a year or two.

Mama to 3 kids. We live in a yurt!
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Old 06-22-2007, 06:18 PM
 
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Wow. I just realized I am so fnarkin' lucky to actually know someone who wants to live in a yurt.

:

I'M SERIOUS! How cool is that?!

Y'all rock

: mama to T 9/04 and E 11/08
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Old 06-23-2007, 12:25 AM
 
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Wow. I just realized I am so fnarkin' lucky to actually know someone who wants to live in a yurt.

:

I'M SERIOUS! How cool is that?!

Y'all rock
whats a yurt??? though i guess if its one of those un snob things then i may not like them...not that i am a snob but 700 feet would not be enough room!! but the price sounds FANTASTIC!
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Old 06-23-2007, 01:15 AM
 
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Anyone want to take a guess on how many times I said, "Can you please be quiet? Mommy has a headache." today?

Come on, I dare ya!

Samantha, Mama to Elizabeth, September 24, 2004
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Old 06-23-2007, 01:31 AM
 
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pictures of yurts



I wouldn't want to live in one either (too small!) but I think it's pretty darn cool to know someone who would!

: mama to T 9/04 and E 11/08
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Old 06-23-2007, 01:35 AM
 
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18?

That's a bummer kind of day . . . Hope you are feeling better tomorrow.

Yes Jen, there is a Waldorf school in my town. Used to be called spring hill, but they changed it to The Waldorf School for reasons unknown. I love the philosophy, like many of the people (my doula had a kid there), but hate the politics. There are many people who have been burned by the school, many who are out in the community making noise about it. Ultimately I think that someone needs to do a better job of smoothing the wrinkles. I would love to send my kids there (the senior projects this year were amazing), but 8,000 x 4 equals more money than I have ever thought of per year. We thought we would homeschool, but Owen insists he wants to go back to public school, so thats where we go for now.

Tomorrow morning I work at the farmer's market for my CSA. It is fast paced and lots of fun and so much easier than being a mom to four. I will have Eli on my back ( in the Ergo) and it will feel like a vacation.

K
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Old 06-23-2007, 02:02 AM
 
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pictures of yurts



I wouldn't want to live in one either (too small!) but I think it's pretty darn cool to know someone who would!

so its a modern TP pretty much? i've seen those houses that are round before but much larger and they are always "architechtrual (i know my spelling sucks!) wonder!!" lol. essentially couldn't you put 2 or 3 together? i mean with teens you could put a BIG LONG hallways between the master suite and their rooms and then have another yurt for the living, dining, eating etc. doesn't seem like that would be hard.....
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Old 06-23-2007, 12:31 PM
 
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Oh yes, Ashley, if you have dreams of living in a yurt then you ARE TRUELY HOME! Homer is definitely where you need to be. One of my friends helped build housing for a Macrobiotic group that lives (lived?) in Kasilof; they lived in tipees for a few years first. It was a very interesting group. Very smart people; totally primitive/communal living except for these amazing media rooms they had.

Heather; I am glad I'm not the only one who spends so much time obesssing about carseats. I know there is something wrong with me! Right now Target has free shipping; so now I'm going to try the Safety 1st Uptown for a convertible. I found the Scenara in town in a pattern I can tolerate but man, there is nothing cushy about that seat!

Samantha; sorry about the headache! While I know it must be trying sometimes, it sounds like you and E have pretty fun times together.

Babies; oh yes, isn't it goofy... you'd think by two of them your enthusiasm would dampen, but I've found it's just the opposite. It must have something to do with turning 30. I'm doing a very lazy version of NFP and then using something when I'm fertile. I just found VCF (Vaginal Contraceptive Film) and it's awesome! But of course, my girlfriend gave it to me and when I looked at the box I realized it's a year out of date. But it's still probably pretty good, right?!

Jen; that 'havin' my babeeee' song is awful. Thanks for getting it stuck in my head!

Megan~ mama to Cecilia (9/1/04) Carl (11/19/06) Vivian (9/10/09) & spring 2011 baby.
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Old 06-23-2007, 05:22 PM
 
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Babies; oh yes, isn't it goofy... you'd think by two of them your enthusiasm would dampen, but I've found it's just the opposite. It must have something to do with turning 30. I'm doing a very lazy version of NFP and then using something when I'm fertile.
That's how we got Anna!

Mama to 3 kids. We live in a yurt!
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Old 06-23-2007, 11:39 PM
 
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ooh, watch out! VCF is how we got Noah!

Chrissy, lucky mama to Noah (9), Lilah (6), Rowan (3) and Laney (1).
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Old 06-24-2007, 01:51 AM
 
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Guess what??? You'll never believe it..... After 2 years of talking about it, today my husband arranged for us to have internet access at home!!!! Really! I'm at my own house and posting a message.... whoo hoo!!! Granted it is just dial-up connection and we are still struggling to work the kinks out, but I'm super thrilled to know I can stay in better contact with all of you lovely ladies! I might even start posting n my blog again!

Becca~ glad to hear from you, and congrats on the new vehichle! How old is Eli these days?

Liz~ always nice to hear from you, i love the thoughtfullness of your posts.. they way they inspire me to think.... really stop and think, about things.

Jen~ I totally agree with you on the idea of picking your battles.. but I find my instinctual reactions sometimes are more on the side of "obey me, because, just because!" I have to stop and ask myself sometimes, what harm is it doing to let her just do whatever I was about to forbid??? It's a challenge I face daily, because she is a very strong willed little girl, with definite ideas about how she wants things done!

Well I'm running out of time, BUT I can post again tomorrow, so...

Good night

Anna Banana ~5 year old daughter ~3 year old son one angel baby and expecting July 2010
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Old 06-24-2007, 02:50 AM
 
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How funny that one of the ads on the page is for yurts! I'm laughing and laughing right now.

Samantha, Mama to Elizabeth, September 24, 2004
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Old 06-25-2007, 02:15 AM
 
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Yeah for Anna being back online!!! We've missed you the past 2 years!

Baby lust - so Eli is 3 months old today....and he's the type of baby that makes you want to have another! How scary. At this point with Robin, I wanted NO MORE KIDS EVER. She came out happy and smiling and so sweet - but she has been on 11 since birth. Between the reflux and her energy, she wore, and still wears me out. But Eli is so laid back and cool and (dare I say it) sleeps through the night unless he's choking on snot (which he has been since camping last weekend). Robin is more often up at night than he is. We may stop at 2 - we'll see. I don't want to get an IUD yet - I plan to, but I don't want to get it until I get my period back. I want to see if I can beat my 19 months PP before getting AF and officially be the longest ammenoreac (sp) person anyone actually knows.

Samantha - hope the head is better. hugs. I hope E was cooperative.

Jen - I feel SOOOO blessed and lucky that Clint has really taught me about picking your battles. i didn't grow up like that - I grew up in a "that's just the rule" or "b/c I said so" household. Clint grew up in a "if it causes no harm, let 'em try" household and a "if it can be washed or replaced, what does it matter?" household. I think we've found a good balance and have a few things that don't bend in most circumstances, and let other things go. Manners matter, sleeping matters. but trying new things matters too, and having fun even if it's a huge mess, etc. There are definitley times when I have to take a deep breath and step back and let he and RObin do things I would put a stop to - but I rarely regret it.

Kristin - jealous of your CSA. sounds fun. I'm really looking forward to doing this volunteer childcare this week for similar reasons. The kids will be with me, but it'll be a refreshing experience for us all.

Ashley - a yurt would be a good, affordable option while you build - cheaper than a camper. If this house hadn't come up, clint and I were looking at living out of a truck camper or else renting a tiny one-bedroom shack. You make me feel like less of a crazy person with how unsettled my life is at the moment. I was thinking the other day about how none of the other grown-ups with kids in our lives are as transient as we are right now. You know, we have a house that we don't live in, we're housesitting a house we don't own, we're hoping to leave them both and go back to china, we're just literally taking each week as it comes. and then I thought of you guys and was like, "okay, if we are crazy, we aren't alone!"
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