Happy Thanksgiving

We hosted a smashing success of a Thanksgiving feast! And our house is still reaping the consequences. ūüė¶

Natalie and Kim drove in Wednesday night. I was long asleep by the time they arrived, and from what I understand, Kim was in bed pretty quickly as well. I woke at midnight and toddled down the stairs to find Natalie and Shelby working feverishly in the kitchen, doing as much prep work as possible. A shopping list of forgotten items was prepared.

Wednesday night started the rough sleeping nights of Hannah, and after a restless night, she woke early Thursday morning. I got her dolled up in a cutesy little outfit and the two of us went off to Kroger to get the last minute items on the grocery list. When Kroger failed to supply all the items required¬†(apparently Heavy Whipping Cream is all the rage on turkey day), we scooted over to Food Lion and found what we needed. It wasn’t too crowded given that it was still pretty early, and watching Hannah push around the “Shopper In Training” cart was well worth the trip.lil-shopper

We got back home and futzed around waiting for people to wake up already. I rearranged some furniture and got some stations set up for drinks and appetizers. Hannah was well behaved and sweet and very interested in what was happening to her house.

The huz finally woke and sloshed right into the kitchen. We started making breakfast when Beth and Gary arrived with the turkey in tow. Gary plugged the grill in on the back porch and the turkey work was done! He kept offering services, but everyone pretty much had everything covered and kept telling him to sit and enjoy the break. But when a few more ingredients were needed (how do you forget the cheese part of Mac & Cheese?) he offered and drove me back to the store. It was nice to catch up with him. I rarely talk to him and he’s such a nice and interesting person. However, when the third trip to the store was requested an hour later, I let him take that one by himself.

Despite Shelby’s efforts at getting everyone the hell outta the kitchen, that is pretty much where we all¬†congregated. Dishes had to constantly be washed to be available for the next food prep, appetizers had to be arranged, elixirs and tonics had to be concocted, and of course Hannah wanted to hang around under everyone’s feet to “ask” for a bite of everything.

By the time PT came over, Gary had gotten so itchy at the idea of sitting still that he was mid-way through mounting our TV to the wall. PT hung out in there for a bit and nibbled on a few finger sandwiches and cocktail weenies.

Jeff was the last to arrive and his timing couldn’t have been more perfect. The rolls had just gone in the oven, turkey and ham were being carved, and the final dishes were being placed on the table.


We had broccoli and apple salad, sage and sausage stuffing, Mac & Cheese, baked beet salad, smashed potatoes, sweet potato souffle, turkey and turkey gravy, ham, creamed corn, green bean casserole, creamed spinach, rolls, and of course the traditional cranberry jelly thing straight from the can. Everyone loaded up plates and we all sat together in the living room with the newly mounted TV playing football in the background.

Sufficiently stuffed, a quick game of Mustache Smash began while others did some dinner cleanup and dessert prep. It was getting into the evening and Hannah was getting increasingly fussy so I took her up to get ready for bed. She went down pretty quickly, but by the time I got downstairs, a game of Quelf had begun. This game can take a while, and at about 10:30, an outburst from a particularly ornery PT woke Hannah and ended the game.

She came down to visit but stayed firmly gripped by a parent lest she scream in dismay while friends busted out their tupperware and started divvying up the leftovers. Beth and Gary left soon after followed by PT. Jeff hung around for a while but I was upstairs unsuccessfully trying to make Hannah sleep. She finally went down close to 2? Maybe that was that night?

In any case, she still woke early Friday morning in a foul mood. I tried keeping her quiet, but it didn’t seem to matter. Nobody got up before noon anyway. She and I did come to an agreement at some point which involved her carrying a roll in each hand and being granted unquestioned access to my legs.

Friday was Friday. Hannah and I had some yard time, Shelby had some good solid friend time with Natalie and Kim. A party commenced with appropriately mixed egg nog.* I’m steering clear of liquor at the moment, beer and wine only, so I took that opportunity to take Hannah for a walk, hoping the evening air would help her sleep. It did not. Enter night 3 of crappy sleep for all.

Saturday morning our new dishwasher arrived but has yet to be installed. I feel like all we have done since Thursday is eat ham and turkey and wash dishes. Blah. Hannah slept well Saturday night, waking only once but putting herself right back to sleep. I negotiated with Shelby and got an extra hour of sleep Sunday morning, it was glorious. Sunday night was equally uneventful though I spent most of the night convinced I could hear her crying. Last night or I guess technically this morning, she woke up at 4. I think part of her problem is all the ham and dry air made her extra thirsty and all the water and milk makes her diapers get veeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeery full at night, and her diapers kinda suck for that. I will be investigating a better overnight diaper option. Sure enough, at 4 this morning her diaper was incredibly full and her pjs were just shy of being damp. But I could tell she was still tired so I changed her quickly while Shelby made a small bottle. She actually let me put her back in the crib! That hardly ever happens! After 20 minutes of quiet I dared to think that she may have fallen asleep again, but it only lasted until the bottle was empty and then she was ready to be back out at about 4:30.

I took her downstairs. She wanted to be held so I held her. Then she decided she wanted to be put down so I put her down. Then she heard her daddy who was coming down the stairs to help and she giggled. But then he left the room and she cried. She was an emotional wreck! I sent Shelby back upstairs after he offered to stay with her telling him I wouldn’t be able to sleep anyway.¬†I was holding out hope that this obviously tired little girl would be able to put herself back to sleep and we wouldn’t be actually starting our day at 4am. Thankfully, by 5:15, she was snoring on my shoulder. By 5:45, I was able to fall back asleep. 6:24, my alarm went off. ūüė¶

*Natalie and Kim went to the liquor store to get some dark rum to add to the egg nog. They were duly informed by the store clerk that REAL TRADITIONAL egg nog is actually mixed with 3 liquors; whiskey, rum, and cognac. Smart salesperson. Totally sold three bottles of liquor to someone looking to buy one.


Happy Holidays

The holidays are upon us once again. Oy Vey!

There was a time I was totally on top of all this stuff. I had birthday gifts all purchased well in advance. I have a lot of birthdays to pay attention to.

January – Brother in Law, Nephew 3

February – Totally clear for me (we don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day)

March – Brother in Law and me

April – Brother and Nephew 1

May – Sister

June – Nephew 2

July – Husband and Mother in Law

August – Sister and Mother

September – Sister and Father in Law

October – Also randomly clear

November – Daughter, Anniversary

December – Father, Brother in Law and Christmas

I used to have Christmas gifts bought and wrapped by August. I’d have last minute purchases sure, of things that went on sale or I thought so and so would just love to have. But if I didn’t make these purchases, everyone would still have a major item wrapped from me.

Somewhere along the line this all broke. I am only now starting to admit to myself that I might be a scrambling last minute shopper. ūüė¶

Birthdays I was still pretty good about until all the life changes started happening at once and I completely fell off the wagon. I think I’m caught up at this point, but there may still be someone I missed (holla at me if you want a gift yo!).

And now the holidays are upon us.¬†I have purchased exactly 3 things. I’m behind.

That Mythical Sleep Monster

I don’t know you guys. I just don’t know.

I am in desperate need of getting the whole family on the same sleep page. Last night I had a touch of what life could be like again and it was glorious. Allow to splain. No, there isn’t time, let me sum up.

Hannah sleeps through the night about 4 days a week. The other nights she fluctuates between grumpy groan crying and full out screaming. Grumpy groans we let ride, but then we’re on edge for most of the night waiting for the shrieks to begin. Shrieking nights, she’s usually like “Yup, I had my nap, now let’s¬†PLAY!” and we spend the next 4 hours trying to convince her that it’s nighttime which is when night sleeping happens and day time is for naps and play.

Shelby had insomnia for a while that kinda turned into a reverse sleep cycle. He is usually up pretty late at night and then spends the whole day sleeping on the floor in various rooms while Hannah throws toys, remote controls, video games, and food all over the place. Or, you know, pulls ever last wipe out of the bag cuz they’re wet and weird and taste like magic.

I can’t sleep when my ducks aren’t all accounted for. If Shelby is “supposed” to be beside me in the bed and is not, I am anxious. When Hannah has slept several nights in a row, I am anxious. When I can’t remember the last time I saw the cat and am convinced I accidentally locked him in the shed, I am anxious. I toss and turn, wake with a start every hour or so, and am constantly running around the house trying to track all of the occupants. And then I go to work where the frown pretty heavily on sleeping at your desk.

I am very tired.

Hannah has been up a couple nights recently. We switched her to whole milk and she has been much more gassy. Early on, she had a few spit ups but that seems to have settled. Tuesday night she grumpy moaned for about 20 minutes at midnight, but slept well otherwise. Regardless, I was on edge. Shelby was up until almost 6am. I slept restlessly, waking often and finding it hard to fall back asleep. Wednesday was exhausting.

So last night, I fell asleep on the couch at about 9:30. Shelby sent me up around 10 and I did my evening routine of crunches and cat cow bows before sliding under the covers and reading a book. Well, opening a book, reading three words and crashing out. The cat came and snuggled in under the covers with me. Shelby came up “early” and messed around on the computer but he was in bed beside me and that’s what really mattered. Hannah slept through. I woke up once at 3:11a but all were accounted for and I fell right back asleep. I slept hard until my alarm went off this morning.

I am still tired, but I feel rested. A rare phenomenon indeed. I feel like I can accomplish something today rather than feeling like my brain is stuffed with pillows. Even the simplest tasks have lately felt like overwhelming feats of mental gymnastics. Today I can look at an email and understand what it means.

Sleep. It really is important.

Medically Relevant

You may remember that this one time, I got pregnant. And while I was very diligent about the prenatal appointments, everything else sorta fell by the wayside. I was already spending sooooooooo much time out of the office and just couldn’t muster the energy to do anything else. It’s been a little over a year, and I am finally getting caught up on all my “me” things.

I got my hair cut. This may not seem like a big thing, but it felt epic. I need it cut again, we’ll see if that happens before Christmas. I got my feet did for my sister’s wedding in the Spring. This also felt epic. I went to a regular old Dr. appointment in the summer. They initially wagged a finger while tutting at me about the length of time between visits, but I casually dropped in that I’d had a baby and all was forgiven.

I have an eye appointment today. This will be the first time I’ve been to the eye doctor since like, 2014? Maybe. It will be great to see again. And hopefully it will help with the headaches and squinting. I also got Shelby scheduled for an eye appointment. He’s been in need of glasses forever and finally relented after trying to read video game instructions off the TV. Yay brainiacs!

Last up, I need a dental appointment. I know my youngest sister is screaming at the computer screen but no, I have not been to the dentist since roughly a month before the last time I went to the eye doctor. I’m sure my teeth are in a pathetic state given the uptick in sensitivity and the likely damage caused by morning sickness, calcium sucking fetus, calcium sucking nursing baby, and the lack of calcium¬†consumed to minimize the resulting amount of baby barf. I don’t feel like my teeth are going to fall out, but …

When I was younger, (let me do some maths real quick. I worked at KB toys so I was in college but living at home so around 20???) I broke a tooth. I did it by chewing on an M&M. Um, yeah. I had to get a root canal that was botched and required another root canal that I am still not convinced was done right and I do not want to have to do that again. Ever. So though my mouth mostly feels fine, and the only “symptoms” I have of crappy mouth situation are sensitivity to breathing cold air and sipping extreme hot soup or beverages, I still squeeze my eyes tight and hold my breath whenever I chomp down on something hard waiting for the sound and taste of a busted tooth. So maybe I should go get that checked out.

Babies. Is there anything they don’t wreck?

Birthday Photo Parade

She’s one. Holy crap my baby is one.

The day started off well. Shelby had the brilliant idea of purchasing a ball pit. I had the brilliant idea of setting it up early all Santa style so it would just be there when she went into the nursery for the first time that morning. She was initially wary, hesitant to enter the unknown hall of colors, but it didn’t take long for her to dive right in.


The cat was equally attracted and Hannah enjoys chasing him through the tubes. Cute.

We got her dolled up in her obligatory party outfit


And then plopped her in the middle of the kitchen table to open her overwhelming haul of gifts.


She got some books, lots of new clothes, and bunches of toys. Pictured here are her bath toys which became the fast favorite. She also got one of those fisher price rotary phones and xylophones, and a couple of bigger items that she either loves or ignores depending on how interested her father or I pretend to be in them.


We haven’t given Hannah much sugar in her short little life. She has gotten the occasional bite of ice cream or sip of juice from a grandmother,¬†a gerber cookie or graham cracker after dinner, but nothing approaching the caliber of birthday cake. We got her stripped to the diaper, lined her tummy with some Pasta Pick-Ups (cooked her favorite meal for her birthday, I will take my best mom ever award now) and then let her loose on a specially made cupcake.


She was surprisingly and remarkably clean afterward…


Mustn’t waste the precious. (Although that’s about all she ate. She filled up on Ravioli. WIN!)

She got dressed in about three of her new outfits throughout the day. Spent about 15 minutes playing with her new toys and the rest of the day sitting in a laundry basket, cuz why not?¬†I’m 1, I do what I want!¬†

And now I have a one year old. Who has been to the dentist, has a Dr appointment this week, is up to date on her shots, and is no longer nursing but still likes to dig in my shirt with¬†the tiny little ice cubes at the end of her wrists. She walks, she “talks”, she climbs, likes to feed herself, has a strong preference for being outside, and does her best to give kisses 1 out of every 5 times we ask. She and the cat are becoming very good friends which gives her no end of joy, but she does display a humorous amount of jealousy if he pays me more attention than her. She not only thinks but she considers. She is curious and adventurous. She doesn’t suck her thumb or carry a lovey, but when she gets frustrated or scared she clings to our legs like a monkey in a tree. She likes music. She dances; which mostly consists of arm flapping and head bobbing but is very distinctly dancing and certainly in response to music. Like her eldest cousin, she goes wild at the theme tune to “The Office”. She still hates being restrained, wailing when we click her into her carseat, but she will actively climb into it and play when it sits on the floor. She’s afraid of the vacuum but loves to carry around the broom and dustpan. She mimics me often. She learns incredibly quickly. I am sure that if she was a little bit taller she would totally be able to work the baby gates, she knows what to push but just can’t get the leverage. She can work the iPad. She is smart. She is funny. She is sweet. She is happy. And so are we.




Zero. Absolutely no Trick-or-Treaters.

Also, Shelby’s stage manager backed out of his show so I was recruited (mostly willingly) to run the show the first weekend. Which meant I stood around completely costumed with my tiny pirate wench (who totally wore her head scarf the whole day!) waiting for tiny adorable people dressed as (probably) princesses and butterflies only to shuffle off to rehearsal late with a bucket full of candy I was tired of eating three weeks ago but somehow can’t seem to stop. Theatre folks are only so forgiving of a bearded lady holding up their Halloween.


I miss the parties. I miss the costume contests. I miss the motivation to carve pumpkins and pull out all the decorations and make Halloween magic. I know it will be better next year when the magic is more better for Hannah, but this year disappointed once again.

We have some friends that got a boatload of candy seekers and they invited us to come to their house next year, so if we’re still friends, we’ll probably do that.

Hannah turns 1 in 2 days. How the even heck did that happen? I bought a cake mix to make cupcakes. She’s got a bunch of gifts, some already open and in use, some we’ll help her open on Friday. Obligatory pictures to follow I am sure. She has one set of grandparents here to to help celebrate. Other guests will be here the week following. And then of course we’re hosting Friendsgiving this year, so our humble house will get a lot of action in the next month.


Here’s another cute pic. Gotta do some work. Blah.


Why is the Rum always gone????