Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Today I'm trying to...

...prevent many dying garden plants from completely giving up.

...maintain my equilibrium in the face of very interrupted sleep and a very cranky and still somewhat sick Bean.

...find a happy mama place before Sister gets home from school.

...determine where the hell the ants all over my kitchen counter are coming from and what they could possibly be after. There are no crumbs! The cookie jar is empty!

...free-motion quilt the new baby's blanket on my mysteriously uncooperative machine.

...plan the meeting for Sister's Girl Scout troop parents at my house tomorrow night, made difficult by the fact that half of them STILL haven't responded to a couple of emails now. (I wish everyone checked their email as often as I do, dammit.)

...make a delicious dinner of cheese-coated fried pork chops with madeira sauce, mashed potatoes, and steamed broccoli.

...feel unconcerned that I still have between 13 and 15 weeks to go of feeling this uncomfortably pregnant. (It will only get worse.)

This mama is trying.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Home is where the barf is

Sister and I are home from Savannah now after a lovely time spent walking the historic district together, eating really fantastic Vietnamese food, and enjoying ghost stories on a nighttime horse-drawn carriage tour. We had the best time in each other's company that we've had in I can't remember how long, nearly completely free of complaining and temper tantrums on her part and bitchy mama-ness on mine. Until we got to the airport, that is. Then Sister began to decline rapidly, not handling the transition back to regular life very well. While she'd managed being on her feet for seven hours straight with only a lunch break walking around in Savannah, standing in line for 10 minutes for a burrito in the Atlanta airport was just more than she wanted to do. At least I had some good sleep behind me so that I could handle it well--10-1/2 hours the first night and 9 hours the second night. Just that alone would've made it totally worth it for me.

We got home yesterday to a house that wasn't nearly as trashed as I'd anticipated it would be with Husband and Bean on their own for a few days. Clearly Husband had made an effort to tidy before I got home, which I appreciated a lot. But the transition back home wasn't all smooth. Bean woke up feverish in the middle of the night last night to vomit up her skimpy dinner. She's still feverish today, though thankfully the barf hasn't made a reappearance. She's definitely feeling pretty bad, though, and doesn't want to do anything more right now than curl up under a blanket next to me on the sofa to watch recorded episodes of Sesame Street. She's eaten only 2 slices of watermelon and a grape popsicle today, and as far as I'm concerned she can eat nothing but watermelon and popsicles today if she wants. Mild, slightly sweet stuff that will keep her hydrated and cool and that contain some calories at least. My poor girl.

So I'm in for a quiet day today, catching up on emails and trying to plan the meeting I'm holding for the parents of Sister's Girl Scout troop on Wednesday. (Why am I already not surprised that fully half of the parents haven't responded to the email I sent out early last week?)

Friday, August 24, 2007

Last few days of summer

It's been awhile....

Things have been busy here at the cave, but I've also been a bit too sad and overtired to blog. I started the week off with a stupid fight with Husband over Bean's wretched sleeping habits and what we could do to fix it. It ended badly and Bean's still not sleeping worth a damn. However, now she appears to be getting Sister's cold so at least there's an excuse. If there's a reason for sleep-deprivation it's somehow a little easier to be patient about it. I at least have the illusion that it'll be over once the reason no longer exists. (A mama can dream, right?)

The good news is that I'm taking Sister for a big girls only trip to Savannah today. We're using up some free business class plane tickets to get there, staying in a B&B in the historic district with a small pool in its lovely, lush private courtyard, and planning to do fun, hokey things like going on a horse-drawn carriage tour of all the haunted spots in the district. And did I mention that I'm going to sleep A LOT? 'Cause my fabulous 9-year old child really needs her nighttime sleep in uninterrupted 12-hour chunks, bless her. I can't wait!

After that school starts and the Girl Scout year starts and it'll be back to getting up at 6:15 to get a few quiet minutes before the girls have to be gotten up for the day. But I still have a few nice days of summer...

Saturday, August 18, 2007

It's starting again

Sister's return to school as a fourth grader is imminent now. Suddenly the summer is over and there's a lot to do to get ready for the school grind to begin again. I need to take Sister shopping for some new clothes--for jeans specifically which she has always spurned before as too uncomfortable but which now she's dying to wear. Well, that and a suit on her first day of school. I'm afraid I've been letting my dear child watch a bit too much "What Not to Wear" with me lately. A suit, she says!

But it is funny how her tastes are starting to change. She and her friends spent all last year spurning all things "girly-girl," as they phrased it. This included anything pink or Bratz, Barbie, or unicorn-related. This year, suddenly pink is o.k., and even desirable. She chose a pink parka for herself out of a catalog, along with a pastel pink shirt with floral trim and a pink-flowered skirt to match. She wants to grow her hair out long again and also chose a pink backpack this year--though it is in fact hot pink with black polka dot trim and nothing too sweet.

Still, I'm interested to see where this might be heading this year.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


I'm still here and blogging on my cute, new MacBook from the sofa--woo-hoo! Husband felt the need to go out and purchase a swank and tiny little computer to tote around in London while he was gone last week, but justified it as my home laptop to replace my very old, refurbished dinosaur of a laptop. I get the sense that it's way fancier a computer than I need or can really appreciate--mainly I'm just psyched that it has enough battery power to enable me to use it somewhere other than our desk.

I managed to make it through last week and Husband's absence, but just barely. By Thursday I was beginning to lose it from all of Bean's night wakings and Sister's attitude. He got home Friday, so I don't think I had too much time to be an absolute bitch mama. I still don't feel entirely caught up on my sleep, but I think that may be because I'm getting on in my pregnancy. I'm at 25 weeks now, feeling suddenly large, and beginning to slow down a tad.

Since I've now finished the last Harry Potter, I'm going full steam ahead with sewing projects. I need to finish a rug I'm making for a friend, and after that it's baby quilt and flannel blanket-fest. Also, cute, doll quilt wall hangings and new pillow covers for the baby's room-fest. Oh, and new baby bib-fest. Plus some hand-sewn toys.

Ack! So many ideas! But it IS fun to nest, isn't it?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Too hot

As a big, fat, 24-weeks pregnant woman, it's hard for me to think of anything else this week but how awfully, uncomfortably hot it is. The weather forecast is calling for a high of 103 degrees today, the second day in a row that it'll be over 100. Same for tomorrow, too. Our AC unit hasn't shut off in the last 48 hours, I don't think, provoking much liberal guilt about what I'm doing to the environment. Not enough to make me turn it down, though. It was set at 74 and the downstairs was still 80 degrees at dinnertime yesterday. At 10:30 pm, it was decidedly hotter than 80 degrees upstairs and my legs were sweating as I was climbing into bed last night.

I'm going to take the girls to the pool here in a few minutes since it's already 87 degrees at 9:15 am, and we'll leave before it gets too unbearable. Fortunately, it's going to cool off to a relatively delightful 92 degrees by Saturday.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Real summer

I managed a little bit of outside time yesterday--once to ask the neighbor's gardener what she'd charge to weed all the crabgrass out of our big front bed (an affordable rate! and she can do it this week!)--and a bit of time spent potting up my new plants on the patio, taking lots and lots of breaks from the heat.

It is brutally hot this week in NC. The kind of hot where when you walk out the door, the temperature and the humidity hit you in the face like a wet wall. I waited til 7:30 in the evening to walk the dog around the block, and just that little bit of exertion walking very, very slowly had me dripping with sweat all over. Even my exposed calves were sweating, not to mention the thigh sweat and boob sweat--yuck.

I'm working on some sewing projects with the girls today and staying the hell indoors.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

New resolve

With Husband gone for the week, I've had a bit of spare mental time to make some resolutions. Well, okay, not resolutions in the new year's self-improvement, habit-altering sense, but resolutions nevertheless to get some things done this week that I want to do. So, yes, resolving to have fun. Not that I don't have fun with him home, but I do feel more obligated to fix regular dinners, be sensitive to whether he's trying to get things done himself, keep him company, that sort of thing.

Baking. I'm going to bake some different cupcakes this week, starting with the recipe that Bean and I made this morning for Upside-down Sticky Pecan Cupcakes. They're sorta like a sticky bun, but with sour cream cake batter holding it all together instead of a yeasted dough. They came out beautifully and are so delicious I may have to give them to my neighbor to keep from eating them all myself.

Sewing projects. I mentioned last night that I was working on the border for Bean's big girl quilt, and once that's done this project will be finally over. I finished Sister's last year and just got tired of working on them. Bean's on the fast track for a big girl bed now, though, so this is incentive for her, to have a bed just like Sister's.

I also thought I'd try making Bean a Pointy Kitty from this great blog that a crafty friend turned me onto. You should go check out Wee Wonderfuls if you're at all sewing-minded. She has other free patterns, too, as well as a store with even more cute kid patterns. I already started helping Sister and her friend make pointy kitties last week, prompting Bean to ask me, "Where's mine?" I may try to make up a bib pattern, too, since Bean's used her supply pretty hard and it would be nice to have cute, fresh ones for the new baby.

As for gardening, there isn't a whole hell of a lot I'm willing to do with the weather forecast predicting temperatures close to and at 100 degrees this week. I ought to do battle with the crabgrass in the front beds but...nah. I will, however, be working on potting up some plants for the patio since most of ours died during our trips to the mountains and then to the beach. This morning, I took Bean out shopping and got a hardy banana, some variegated cannas, and some ornamental grasses, among other things. I'm going for tall things with interesting leaves this time around so I don't have to deadhead anything.

What else? I need to clean the house since I've been putting that off for awhile and Husband invited some of his friends over for dinner Saturday night. But since that's so far away, I'll put it off awhile longer maybe. The toilets don't have rings yet, so I can live with it. Heh.

Hope you're all doing things you love right now, too.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

One solo bedtime routine down...

...and just 5 more to go. Sister is at her dad's for the long weekend, so it was just me and Bean tonight. It all went very smoothly, with a lot of time spent outside before dinner, taking turns watering the garden and chatting. Dinner went fine--a lot of fresh veggies from this morning's impromptu trip to the farmer's market--and even the dog got fed on time. Then a cozy shared bath during which I got a taste of what it's like to be Bean. She wanted to help me wash my hair and face, and the way she kept coming at me with the buckets of water and the big, dripping washcloth and I could just barely fend her off after it had gone on awhile...well, it must be how she thinks baths are supposed to go, huh?

She's sleeping now and even the dog is sleeping, though with a rather more sullen attitude than either she or I have at the moment. I'm looking forward to the rest of this quiet evening with mint chocolate chip ice cream, some comedy movie on cable, and diligent work on the border of Bean's big girl bed quilt.

Nighty-night, y'all!

More sleep deprivation, more bitchiness

It's been an exhausting week both because I've had trouble sleeping through all my incredibly intense pregnancy dreams and because Bean has taken to waking up a couple times a night again to scream that someone needs to come "Fix my bankits!" Last night was no exception. I woke up at 6:45 this morning with a sense of dread because Bean was awake for the day and because Husband is leaving the country this afternoon.

For 6 whole days.

I was not at my best with either of the girls this past week. Sister is in a stubborn and argumentative phase, and since I am also both stubborn and argumentative--and sleep-deprived on top of those lovely qualitites--I'm just hoping I can manage to be not quite such a bitch mama with her this week, too.

Wish me luck, mamas.