So Many Changes

Six short years ago, I fell head over heels for a guy in a bar.   To be fair, it was only happy hour (does that make it better?), and it was a charity date auction in which I volunteered my perpetually single self to be put on display.  I had nothing to lose, right?   Apparently, Mr. C didn’t want to lose $80, but slyly decided to chat me up after hearing the words “sold!” awarded to some other guy.  Whoever he may be.

4 short years ago, we were married.   We have always been quick to life changes.  We bought our first home and brought our first son into the world all before celebrating our 2nd anniversary.   That being said, we took time to live.  Time to learn how to be parents (though this is an ever-evolving skill), time for The Mister to work his tail off to graduate with his MBA, time to plan a trip of a lifetime to reconnect as a couple in Ireland, and finally, time to enjoy our little guy.  He has definitely brought us more smiles and laughter than tears and frustration, but as he is approaching two and a half, each day brings its own set of unique challenges.  Like I said, parenting is an ever-evolving skill that I don’t think anyone truly masters.

You may have caught me mention our “first son”.  That’s right, we are expecting to bring our second son into the world before Halloween!  This will officially turn our home into boy territory, and this girly-girl is embracing every minute of it.

Upon learning this great news, we made the decision as a family that I will no longer be working that full-time job of mine as a teacher, but will instead take the year to stay at home with my boys.  I know that it is an amazing opportunity for all 4 of us, and I am excited to take on this new challenging role.  I will admit that I did feel a twinge of emptiness when it came time for teachers to report back to work this week.  It is a job that I am good at, and a role that will always be instilled in me, as I raise my own children.

This year will be full of reflecting on my career, as I watch my toddler grow into an even sweeter, smarter little man, all while adding a newborn to the mix.   After the whirlwind of the past 4 years as a family, it’s okay that I’m not sure what the future has in store.  At least that’s what my heart is telling me.  The life-planner in my brain is still trying to catch up with my heart.

If you’ve followed my silly little blog thus far, with its few and far between posts, stay tuned.  I am planning to revamp and start anew with a new site.   I will link it when I’m ready…I just need a little inspiration first 🙂  Until then, here is a look at our little family of 3 in June, when I was 22 weeks along, and still looked cutely pregnant.

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An 18 Month Brag Post

 

Baby Cakes is now 18 months old.  A whole year-and-a-half!  Baby Cakes has always had huge personality, but now Mr. C and I are truly seeing the comic, the scholar,  the sweetheart, and the rambunctious spirit come out in the boy that we have spent the past 18 months (well, 27, really!) getting to know.

I don’t know when kids are supposed to show their sense of humor, but BabyC has his stand up routine down pat.  He has a signature “Dinosaur Voice” in which he will repeat anything you say in a low, gravely growl, as long as you ask, “How does a dinosaur say ____?”  Of course, this is the funniest thing in the world to him, so he always has to throw his head back to force out his toddler cackle.

Our little 18 month scholar is learning letters and building his vocabulary.  People have asked me how many words he knows, and honestly, it would take a long time to create that long list, and I’m sure some words would get left off. Recently, I purchased magnetic letters for the fridge.  He immediately took to them, started pulling them off one-by-one and to my surprise, he was naming them (correctly!).  Thank you Cookie Monster, for your letter of the day.  You have truly made my child a literary genius.

Baby C has turned into such a little person, with his own opinions, style, and sense of humor.  We can’t eat one meal without requests of “ah-deh?” (that’s Adele for those non-toddler speakers) and “dancey?” as Rumor Has It blasts in our kitchen.  Everything is a show while Baby C is on the go, yet I live for those moments when he winding down for the night.  He will fake “ni night” and snuggle up close with his “B” (his little lovey blanket).   Being a mom of a little boy is such an immense joy.  I can’t wait to see all of ways BabyC will continue to amaze us as he is over the  hump and on his way to a big 2 year old.

 

A year ago…

I’ve been MIA lately, mostly due to my “crap, I only have one week of summer left” mentality, which in teacher reality means, “crap, I have to get into my classroom early to make sure I’m not stressed when I’m really due to report back next week.”  See…more evidence that teachers are truly a hard-working bunch.  While I’ve been slacking in the “Mrs. Cupcake” role of meal planning, sticking to somewhat of a schedule to keep our house together, and going on fun trips with BabyC , I’m mentally doing better in my role as a working mom.  You see, last year at this time, things were pretty bad.  I know I brought a lot of it on myself, but there were many factors that made both work life and home life a mess. So here you have some of my reflections from a year ago at this time.  Things are already off to a better start this year!

A year ago…

  • I cried every morning when I woke up
  • I slept for maybe 4-5 non-consecutive hours each night, with Mr. C getting even less as a grad student
  • I cried dropping Baby C off with his nanny
  • I cried when she texted me to tell me that he wouldn’t stop crying
  • I cried when I walked into my building, lugging my teacher supplies AND a huge bag with pumping gear
  • I cried when I was told I had to pump in the science closet, amongst many other strange locations
  • I cried in meetings when I felt pressure to be that teacher that I was pre-BabyC
  • I rushed home to play on the swings and neglected any sort of housework/cooking
  • I cried when I realized I only had 2ish hours to be with Baby C before bath and bed
  • I cried going to bed at night knowing it would all start over again the next day

Do you see a pattern? Of course, much of it can be attributed to newish mommy hormones, but nevertheless,  here’s to less tears, more sleep, more organization, better dinners, a cleaner house, and more smiles this school year.  Of course, Mr. C and I do have a huge goal of celebrating one more semester of his MBA down with a trip to Ireland in December.  That will keep us smiling for sure!

post-beach blues

 

The beach is one of the most majestic places on this earth.  I will never get over its beauty, and I will always come home with a post-beach depression.  It seems that for the past few years, our vacation has coincided with the end of summer.  I look forward so much to the trip and then, once we’re home, that anxious, sinking, pit-of-the-stomach feeling hits.  Time is running out!  Luckily, we have access to the beach during the off-season too.  It just isn’t the same though…

After a week of not worrying about anything except the safety of Baby Cakes as he bravely dashed into the ocean (more on this later!), I am back to meal planning, grocery shopping, and trying to figure out how to get us back on the healthy train after a week of bingeing.  I’m not sure those bike rides and runs helped, seeing as though they usually resulted in a trip to the market to get beer or donuts!

Healthy suggestions are welcome and very much appreciated as I spend the rest of the morning browsing my pinterest board…which is essentially full of delectable treats and not-so-much the healthy stuff.

 

Whirlwind Sunday Preview

I think I’ve gone crazy. Or at least attempting to be it all and do it all.

Tomorrow I’m hosting a shower for a dear friend and bride-to-be, Baby C’s Auntie A.  I’m her MOH, of course, and will happily be fulfilling that role 🙂

Tomorrow I’m going on a week-long family vacation to the beach.  When I say family vacation, I don’t just mean our quaint little three-some.  Both of my parents come from enormous families (which I love, by the way) and as such, one side of that enormous family will be joining us for the week.

How did these two events overlap? Well, let me remind you about that barely-above-water life that I was (am?) living when all of these arrangements were made.  Oops.  So, tomorrow I have the marathon day of playing hostess and then trucking it to the beach.  Let’s hope we all survive.  And by survive I mean, we get to the beach with all hair in tact (except is that really fair, seeing as I’m really the only member of our Cupcake fam with hair these days?).

The great news?  This stress has finally gotten Mr. C to put away our Christmas decorations, which have been sitting in our master walk-in closet for the better part of 4 months (before that? They were chilling in our hallway.  We had to class up Casa de Cupcake for BabyCakes’ 1st birthday.  C’mon, we’re not that bad…)

The “Su-shine” of my life

When BabyCakes was 6 months old, I swore that was the best age ever. Then he hit 9 months, and I was blown away by the huge personality that was making its presence known more and more. Now that he is almost 17 months, I can honestly say that this toddler stage is amazing. He is still my cuddly baby boy, but the pace at which he is learning language and motor skills blows me away.  Mr. Cupcake comes home each afternoon and is shocked to hear the new words and phrases that Baby C can say.  This past week alone, it was “tache you” (thank you), share?, and try? among others.  Needless to say, communication in our house is getting easier by the day.

Today, however, the best word that comes out of that little mouth is “su-shine”.  Maybe it’s the way that his voice quiets when he speaks it, maybe it’s the meaning behind it, or maybe it’s because we always have to use yellow chalk to draw the “su-shine” on our sidewalks. Whatever the reason, it’s my favorite and I will always cherish the way that he “sings along” to our song, You are my Su-shine, of course!   

Terrible Transitions

Recently, I posted a little blurb about not doing well with change.  That’s not really accurate.  I do like change…the excitement that comes with new events like getting married, owning your first home, and starting a family.  What I’m not that great at dealing with are the transition phases that come with each change.   As the summer winds down, and my “stay at home mom” stint comes to an end, I’m actually getting those same, horribly anxious feelings about going through a transition.again.  This time, it will be hard on two of us.

It’s not always about leaving Baby Cakes all day.  When he was first born, I wasn’t ready.  In my grand plan, I was going to work until the Friday before I was due and I would get to have a little down time/ date time with Mr. C before our family of two became three.  Baby Cakes had other plans, and decided to break into the world on Thursday, leaving me “running out of my classroom screaming” (so the rumor mill said) and to the hospital (yes, I was that girl who had to leave work to have a baby!).   After all was settled and we were home, those horribly anxious feelings settled in.  This time, I was sad about rushing out on “my kids”, when in fact, I was home with the most important kid of all.

It took me some time to settle into the stay at home routine, but I really took to it.  This summer, with Baby Cakes being another year older, our routines are set, and our activities are so much fun.  I’m having a good time planning out our weeks’ events and meals.  Although I’m still learning to be that bargain grocery shopper/meal planner/ chef, I’m starting to get the hang of it.  Now with about 4 weeks to go, I’m starting to get those transitioning blues that always creep up.   It’s going to be a challenge, but I hope that I can somewhat keep up this momentum as a working mom and just know that if I can keep my head a few more inches above water than it was last year, my family will be happier.