Wednesday, June 30, 2010

It's been a while...

I haven't written in a while because...well...I really haven't felt like it.  I've been busy with a lot of things and when I finally had time to write I just didn't feel like it.  I don't feel like I have anything new to really talk about...but I do feel better than I did the last time I wrote.  It would be helpful if I had a way to mentally record things to go back to when I do get a moment to sit down at the computer.  I seem to think of the best blog posts when I am doing dishes or feeding a baby or taking a shower.  None of those times are ideal for blogging and by the time I sit down in front of my laptop, the idea is gone.

Aside with coming up with brilliant blog posts to forget, I've also been thinking a lot about my moods.  I really really appreciated all of the support I got from all of you when you read my last post about my doctor visit and all that was involved with that.  I have finally started to feel like I am on a steady incline out of my moodiness instead of that crazy downward spiral I felt like I was plunging into.  I realize something, though...I'm not an optimistic person by nature.  I think I started trying to be more optimistic almost 5 years ago.  I started for a few reasons but mainly because that was when Nate was born.  I felt like I owed it to him to think positive thoughts.  I didn't realize how much I really worked at it until I stopped working at it 2 or 3 months ago.  I'm pretty sure that I mentioned somewhere at some point about the book, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne.  

My Grandmother actually turned me on to the book and I've also watched the movie.  The book had me convinced that I could make my life better by thinking my life was better and really believing that everything was wonderful.  It makes sense to not dwell on negative.  All the examples about how negativity breeds more negativity rang true when I read it.  It made sense that, if negative breeds negative then positive would breed positive.  It's just not as easy for a born pessimist to pretend to be optimistic all the time.  I can think back on so many instances when my optimism was challenged.  Getting pregnant with Danika when Nate was only 5 months sister suddenly not being able to walk and having back surgery when she was 4 months pregnant with my niece...other family members and friends going through extremely trying times and me grappling with a reason for it and trying to be supportive when I really just wanted to cry right along with them...getting pregnant with the twins ~ finding out there were 2 in there...even though some of those are joyous and easier to find the positive in, it was still a challenge for me to stay optimistic.  I tried, though.  Most of the time I was pretty successful, too.  I can think of a few times when I slipped up and actually laugh a little now about it because I think I was afraid that the universe would see it and would make something bad happen just to prove to me that I needed to keep working to stay optimistic.

When I finally realized that I needed to talk to someone a few weeks ago...when I made that doctor's was because I couldn't be optimistic anymore.  I tried.  I tried all the things that had worked in the past.  I was waiting for them to work and they didn't.  I kept thinking that I would snap out of it any second but I didn't.  I couldn't.  I wanted to but just didn't know how.

I feel better now.  Not 100% back to normal but defiantly able to make it through the pessimistic moments much more "together" than before.  So, I'm guessing that the SSRI is working.  It's been 2 weeks and I'm feeling a little hopeful.  Which is good because there was that one day - I swear I just had a hard time finding a reason for EVERYTHING I was doing.  Get dressed - why?  Not like I'm going to leave the house.  Eat something - why?  It's not like I need to gain any more weight.  Get up off the couch - why?  Someone will let me know if they need me...

Let me tell you - that sucked.  

Anyway - I'm feeling case you were wondering.  I'm hoping that the minor side effects (like being exhausted at the worst times of the day) will become less and less of an issue and I'll be back to normal.  I have a doctor's visit scheduled for the end of the month to just see how things are going....

That's all for now because I've neglected my duties long enough....but I feel like writing more soon ~ so who knows when the next installment of a peak into this crazy gal's life will come!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Come On Get Happy

We are not going to dwell on fact I'm going to type it very, very fast and then I'm moving on - got it?

Apparently, I'm depressed.

I went to my PCP after having an absolutely insane day on Sunday.  I think I cried for 8 hours.  If you would have asked me what was wrong I would have broke out into sobs that were louder and harder and my shoulders would have been shaking and I would have sounded like I was gulping as I said, "I...DON'T....KNOW!!!"

So - long story short (because I was serious about not dwelling), I broke down in my PCP's office and am now seeing if a teeny little SSRI will help me stop bawling anytime someone asks me if I'm okay or tries to give me a hug.

I read a really great article about depression that finally convinced me that I wasn't just being a wimp and could actually try asking someone for help but I can't seem to find it again...if I do, I will post the link. that we are done with know what else helps to lift your mood?  Getting new stuff!  hehehe

Meet Mr. Coffee:

I did clean this coffee pot after making coffee in it...but apparently didn't bother before I took this picture.
 Mr. Coffee was one of the BEST gifts I got at my wedding shower.  He made me feel like a "big girl" when I moved into my home with my hubby.  I would set him to make coffee the night before and when I woke up (I think it was set for 9 am back then) I would have hot, delicious coffee waiting for me.  He was also a HUGE help after we brought Nate, Danika and even the twins home from the hospital.  I didn't drink a lot of coffee - because I was nursing - but I did LOVE that cup in the morning to help me get moving (it's now set for 7:30am...and some days I actually have to turn it on because we are up before it starts brewing).  There is nothing really wrong with Mr. Coffee...but he's seen better days for sure.

PNC bank (which is who we had to switch to after National City closed) does a point program when you use your PNC bank card.  The trick is that you have to use it as credit and not ATM when you are buying things. Anyway - we had enough points to get a $100 Amazon Gift Card and a $25 iTunes Gift Card.  Jerry used the iTunes Gift Card to get some music for his phone...I used the $100 Amazon one to buy this :

The coffee maker - not the Tupperware.  I couldn't take a straight on picture because the beautiful stainless steel reflects the flash.  hehehe

I haven't given her a name, yet.  I'm open to suggestions.  I'm sure that she is a she because she is a multi-tasker!  Not only can I still get a nice, hot cup of freshly brewed coffee first thing in the morning if I set her timer, but she will also grind the beans right before she starts brewing AND she will keep the coffee hot for hours!  No more microwaved coffee for me!  :)

I'm not sure what I'm going to do with Mr. Coffee - I think I'll let him hang out in the basement for a little bit just to make sure our new girl works out and we don't have any problems.  After that, I will probably clean him up and give him to a good home or to Goodwill.

I'm kind of sad about getting rid of something that was routinely part of almost every day of the last 6 years of my life...but I'm totally excited about the shiny new replacement, too.  I kind of feel like I'm in one of those Swiffer Mr. Coffee is going to be at the bus stop with his suitcase dripping tears out of his leaky carafe with "Love Stinks" playing in the background.  Yep...SSRI.  hehehe

Sunday, June 13, 2010

And I Now Have Another Story to Tell My Kids...

Your parents probably have at least 2 or 3...or more than you really want to think about.  You know, those stories that make you laugh the first time they tell you and then make you cringe when you hear the opening line years later.  "I remember one time when we were..."

Well ~ I now have one of those stories for Danika.  Not that I don't have other ones...but this one I won't forget.  EVER.  It will go something like this...

I remember the weekend your father went out of town for a bachelor party.  It was the first time that I was alone overnight with the four of you.  I decided I was going to try to tire you and your brother out by running you all over town.  That way you would go to sleep early and exhausted.  You slept at Grammie and Nunnu's house the night before and I went to pick you up around 1.  I left Dean and David with Grammie and Nunnu and we headed to the mall.  I'd never taken the two of you to the mall by myself before, but I was pretty sure we would be just fine.  (Famous last words, right?)  You had an adorable sundress on with really fancy panties - the kind with ruffles on the bum.  (anyone see where this is going, yet?)

We bought Daddy a Father's Day present then headed down to Halmark where we got cards for Daddy, Pap Pap and Nunnu.  Then we went to Panera and split a gigantic chocolate chip cookie.  We headed into the new toy store to check out the toys.  That was when you started complaining about a belly ache.  I should have known.  We should have left right then.  I waited, though.  You finally told me you had to - we started towards the family bathroom.  You don't like sitting on big toilet seats.  I thought it would be easiest to take you to the family bathroom where they have a small seat.  We were moving fast - and looking back on it now, I should have known it would have been better to just run back into Panera and use their potty.  About 1/2 way to the family bathroom you stop and look up at me.  I knew.  I knew right then that we didn't make it.  I was terrified.  I had nothing.  No wipes because the babies weren't with us.  No change of clothes because...well...because you are potty trained and NEVER had an accident when we were out.  You only had 2 accidents since you started wearing big girl underwear.

So, a terrified me and a very upset you drag a confused Nate into an almost abandoned bathroom.  The bathroom is on an end of the mall that they don't even bother to cool off with the air conditioner because there are no stores down there.  I take you into the handicap stall and do what I can...but it's bad.  REALLY bad.  (I will probably insert some details here...depending on the company I am in...but I'll spare the internet the mental images)

Once I get you as cleaned up as I possibly can, we start running through the mall to the car.  I'm praying that we left most of the smell (ewwww) in the bathroom.  I'm feeling a little bad for the only lady that was in the bathroom with us while we were trying to clean up.  Remember, we are at one end of the mall and the car is at the we are walking close to a mile to get to the car.  Of course we have to run into 3 people that we know on our escape route.  I only really stop to talk to one of them...and only for 3 minutes or so.

I can honestly say I think we handled the whole thing pretty well.  I was amazed at how cooperative you and Nate were as I dragged you past the mall playground that I had originally told you we would stop and play in.  Of course, I thought that we would be good after that - so, I got you back to Grammie's and got you cleaned up and took you, Angelina and Nate to the park because you were such good sports about leaving the mall.  I did put you in a pull up so that I didn't have to deal with another accident if it happened.  We spent more time in the potty at the park than we did on the slides and swings...we finally called it a day and got Dairy Queen drinks and hung out with Aunt Nicole until bedtime.  I don't know who was more exhausted at the end of the or you...but we all slept well that night!

On a side note - the rest of my evening/night went really well.  All my babies were asleep at 9pm and we didn't get out of bed until 8 this morning!  Off to make some Cinnamon Buns for breakfast!  :)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

When Parenting Styles are Different

I have never read a book on parenting styles or techniques the whole way through.  I tried reading this book:

when I found out that I was pregnant with twins...but I couldn't get through it because it scared the crap out of me.  I love to read but I'm not so keen on reading about how other people deal with their children.  It usually does one of two things...either makes me feel like I am a horrible, unorganized mother and my children are the worst behaved children to ever walk the face of the planet OR it reaffirms my belief that you should have to pass a test (other than a pregnancy test) to have children.  I mean, if you have to explain to someone that a babies need fed then maybe they shouldn't be having children.  Plus, I haven't found a book yet that deals with how to stay sane while trying to raise 4 children under the age of 5.

I have noticed, however, that my husband and I have very different parenting styles.  I'm sure that someone has written about this...I may have even read something about this somewhere and that is why the vocabulary for this post comes so easily...or maybe I should write my own book about it, who knows.

Anyway - I had to go into work for a few hours yesterday.  It was nice.  It was a nice break from having to feed/change/deal with one of my 4 children.  When I came home, though, things weren't so nice.  Of course they were all fine until I walked in the door - which is ALWAYS the case no matter WHERE they are when I return.  They are fine at my parents, my in-laws or my house UNTIL I walk in the door.  So, I began the process of feeding the babies bottles and putting them down for a nap.  It was a little after 1 o'clock.  Now, if I had been home they would have already had their bottle and been sleeping...but because Jerry was home with them, they were playing and happy UNTIL I walked in the door.

While giving David his bottle I realized something.  I am a proactive parent.  I want to be one step ahead of my children.  I want to feed them right before they realize they are hungry.  I want to snuggle them to sleep right before they fall asleep bouncing in the Johnny Jumper.  I want to change them before they realize they are wet and uncomfortable.  Jerry is a reactive parent.  When they start to fuss, he feeds them.  When they fall asleep in the Johnny Jumper, he carries them up to their crib.  When they are leaking through their diaper, he changes them.

I don't think there is anything wrong with either parenting style.  To tell you the truth, the babies slept better last night than they had in a week - which could be because Jerry didn't try to have them take a nap before they were ready to take a nap.  A lot of the time I try to feed them before they are starving only to realize that they aren't hungry at all.  Then again, there are times when Jerry waits until they are too tired to fall asleep easily and we get a fight going to bed.  I think our differences in parenting styles causes a little tension between us from time to time because we both think the other one isn't doing it "right".   I'll blame him when the babies are crying because he was doing something else and he should have known it was time to feed them.  He'll get upset with me because we can't get out the door because someone is always due to eat or have a nap or be changed...I feel like he wants to know why we can't just wait until they cry and I want to know why we have to wait until they do.

I know there are no answers for the perfect way to raise children.  I know that it's a trial and error process and that it changes.  I had the babies on a great schedule for 3 days.  It was AWESOME!  Then, on the 4th day, it just didn't work.  It wasn't me - it was just that they weren't ready to sleep and eat at the same times they had the day, I reluctantly adjusted my schedule.  I'm flexible.  Things I did that worked great with Nate, didn't work with Danika.  Things that worked with Danika aren't working with the boys.  Heck, things that work with Dean don't work with David.  They are all different.

Maybe reacting to what they need when they need it is the best thing to do...but kids need consistency and routine, too.  Maybe all you can do is be flexible and try to stick to a routine while also remembering that the best laid plans of...well, you know.  :)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

So...better or worse?

I would love to tell you that I was absolutely right and I feel a lot better now...but that's not entirely true.  I feel a little bit better - not really any I guess that's a good thing, right?

We had a busy few days and my whole thinking that life goes smoother when I'm not online as much as I want to be was totally reaffirmed.  I wish that I could figure out how I'm going to squeeze my computer time into my everyday life without causing any disruption to the flow.  If I get online early...I'm not awake enough to really do the things I want to do.  (for example, write a blog post!)  If I wait until mid morning...well, that's just disaster because I have children to feed and entertain.  I have laundry to do.  I have a house to manage.  So, mid morning is probably the WORST time to get online.  If I wait until afternoon, it's the same deal - feeding kids, At night, if I get on the computer, Jerry sits in the living room sighing huge sighs and complaining because I don't want to spend any time with him.  Never mind that he is watching a movie we've seen 100 times (like The Replacements or The Godfather) or some sporting event that I have NO interest in (like baseball...sorry, baseball on TV is worse than watching paint dry).  I feel guilty because he is right - I don't spend enough time with him.  So, evening is kind of out, too...which leaves me no real slot of time that is perfect.  Guess I will just have to keep trying.  If I wasn't so easily distracted, I would be able to get online, do my thing and then get back to my regularly scheduled life.  But I'm always clicking links and getting lost online.  ALWAYS.

Okay...enough of my whining.  Wanna hear something I'm excited about?  I am actually excited about a few things coming up.  First, this Wednesday is our first pickup for the CSA at Blackberry Meadow Farms!  Second, Saturday is my wedding anniversary!  We will have been married 6 years.  For our wedding anniversary, my husband will be at a bachelor overnight bachelor party.  I'm not one to get all worked up about bachelor parties.  I'm also not really hung up on the date thing.  It doesn't really bother me that Jerry won't be here on our anniversary as long as we get the chance to celebrate around the date.  After all, we kind of thought Nick would be a bachelor FOREVER.  That makes this whole thing kind of a big deal.  I think I've talked my parents into keeping Nate and Danika for me that night - so it will just be me and the little guys.  I think I can handle it...

Finally, you know what I'm really really excited about?  TOY STORY 3!!!  Silly, right?  I just love the Toy Story movies and Nate and Danika have been watching the first two nonstop.  So, the whole house is excited about the new movie.  We've already talked about a Toy Story theme for Nate's birthday in November and we saw TONS of Toy Story toys at K-mart yesterday...we want them all.  Yes, I said WE.  Part of it is that I would just love to see my little guys playing with Buzz and Woody just like Andy does.  It would be great to see Nate or Dean or David written on the bottom of a boot (space or cowboy).

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Deep Breaths . . . In and Out

I'm having an interesting week.  In all honesty, it will be better tomorrow.  I'm not kidding.  I know this for a few reasons.  One reason is slightly personal.  Without giving too many details, I will say that something that has been raging the past three days (they start with the letter H) will be more "balanced" as opposed to slightly "unbalanced" after today.  Another reason that I will be better tomorrow is that Jerry has gone back to work today!  I know...I know...what an awful thing to say.  It makes me sound like I don't want him home.  It makes me sound like I would rather have him gone than have him here.  That's not true.  It just means that things can go back to "normal" with him at work and me here keeping things in order.

Now, before you start thinking I'm unhappily married or that I don't like my husband or I'm obsessive compulsive, hear me out.

My sister-in-law moved on Saturday.  While she was packing, she came across a bag or two of clothes for me to put aside for the twins later.  I LOVE hand-me-downs!  I know that there are some people who don't like their kids wearing someone else's clothes - but not me!  I'm all about saving money and not having to buy all new clothes for 4 kids is one way that we can save some cash.  Anyway, I had some hand-me-downs stored in the twins closet.  You see, in order to get the clothes to were they were going, I had to get my husband to go up to the attic.  Not an easy task...we get to our attic by climbing a ladder that is propped up against a wall in the only big closet in this house.  We don't even have the drop down steps like the Griswolds.

So...this is the stack of boxes I had that needed to go up the hole in our ceiling.

13 boxes.  Labeled with Size: ___ and Season:  ___ ~ all ready to go and just waiting for someone *ahem* to tell me they are ready for me to hand them up the ladder.  (This is totally not a one person job)

The start of my problem

Instead of heading up to the attic, my sweet husband gets motivated to do the plaster patchwork that has been hanging around for the last...4 or 5 years?  That's not entirely patch was 5 years was was 2...and one happened last week.  How can I complain about him doing work around the house?  I wasn't completely upset he was doing it.  In fact, I was thrilled because a few of them have become eyesores.  I was excited because that means I'm 1 step closer to doing the painting I've been talking about doing for the last 3 months.  However, I was slightly irritated because the boxes were still in the hall but I had other things to do and I didn't say anything because I don't want to discourage him once he decides to do something that needs done.

5 years ago - hidden by our fridge until yesterday when the fridge was moved to allow room for Jerry to patch it.

3 years ago - my dear  friend Jason was helping Jerry get everything ready while I was in the hospital (after having Danika) and left our hot water radiator open.  It leaked through the floor and into the kitchen.

This one is hard to see but 2 years ago we removed a banister because the screws kept falling out of the wall.  There were 2 marks left that needed patched.

This one is even harder to see - we had a security system installed a week ago and when they guy tried to run the power cord up the inside of the wall it kind of crumbled.  
By the time he finished the first coat (or whatever it is that you call plaster that is drying) it was almost dinner time.  We talked about grilling the chicken I had originally planned on baking - but that didn't pan out because Jerry does the grilling and he was still busy.  He took Nate out to ride his bike and Danika and I started dinner.  Dinner didn't go smoothly.  I ended up having a major overflow of the sauce I was cooking the chicken in.  (I have no idea what happened, but it was all over the bottom of my oven)  So...Jerry decided that we should self-clean the oven.  I told him that it would cause a lot of he decided we would just shut the doors to the kitchen and it would be fine, right?

Long story kitchen still smells like smoke and I have to get the shop vac today and vacuum out the bottom of the oven.

Finally, after dinner and fighting with one baby to go to sleep, Jerry headed up to the attic.  :)

I'm happy to say that all my boxes made it up the steps and he even found the boxes I wanted him to send down (some old photos/books/diaries) so that I could go through.

So you see, it's not that I don't love my husband.  It's not that I'm not happy when he is home.  It's just that I need a day or two to recover from the 3 out of 4 days he was home with me.  I have to get everything back in order so that we can run smoothly again...he just messed up my groove by being home.  I have to FLY through my house and put all the things back that didn't get put back yesterday.  I have to find a place for the plaster stuff so that it's still out (because I'm pretty sure we have a few more "coats" to go) but not in our way.  I have to attempt to get the kids back on a schedule so that bedtime goes better tonight.  We didn't eat/nap/play at the same times because Daddy was home...and that is fine because it doesn't happen EVERY day.  I'm anxious to get the house back to why am I blogging?

Anyway ~ in my boxes of stuff I found my complete collection of New Kids on the Block trading cards (in plastic sleeves and everything) if anyone is interested.  I'd put them on ebay...but it would probably cost more to ship them than they are worth.  hehehe

Oh...and just so you know, I also found a lot of letters and cards and pictures of Jerry and I in those boxes.  I found the diary I started when we got engaged and a few I'd had when we were dating.  So, we ended up laughing about them before we went to sleep and teasing each other about how we looked and how cheesy we were.  :)