Saturday, June 30, 2012

Swimmy Girl!

We did it! Devyn and I did our two week Mommy & Me Waterbugs class a couple of weeks ago. It was so much fun to be together just the two of us in the pool. Cade reluctantly did his preschooler swimmers class at the same time... Okay, okay by "reluctantly" I mean "kicking and screaming". We've been talking about summer being time with Mommy, and there's no school in the summer. He was so sad about not being able to go to school with his friends and beloved teachers, so I pumped him up by saying, "During the summer Mommy is your teacher!". He was excited about that, because he always wants to come to my school.  So, on day one when I was all, "We're going to swim class at Aqua Fit!" He was like "Wth, Momma?" And I was all, "Yeah, you get to swim with swim teachers!" And he was like, "Oh like Miss Janet?" and I was like, "Um, no some other lady" and he like, "Hell to the NO! You said YOU were my teacher! LIAR!" I was all "No way Holmes, I'm Devyn's teacher" and he went all crunk or something on me.

Um, so that's not exactly what happened. I registered for class and assured the Swim Whisperer (that's what her website calls her, and for good reason turns out!) that Cade was a rockstar in the water and he swim instructors last year told us to sign him up for Advanced Toddler Preschooler Algebra Swimmer Class (or whatever). So day 1 of swim class comes and he gets all shy when we walk in. Oh, that's sweet I thought. He's hiding behind my leg, aww that's kind of sweet. I've never seen him be the shy kid. Okay, seriously dude. Knock it off. Momma has to walk and carry Devyn and a swim bag with our loads of shit. We have to sit down criss cross applesauce with the other families. Jeeeez! Then his class went down to the pool and he refused to go. So his temper tantrum was freaking out the baby, so there I am sitting on the floor, all criss cross and shit, and he's latched onto me for dear life, Devyn is wiggling around and I'm trying so hard to be encouraging and positive and my voice just started all sweet and getting more panicked because he WOULD. NOT. GO. I've never seen this child before, I swear!  Two ladies took him kicking and screaming.

See friends? You think my kids are so sweet. Fret not. They can be Total Nightmares. He lived. He passed the class. There were tears the rest of week 1 and probably week 2. But we bribed him with superhero dive sticks and thank sweet baby Jesus that my mom came to class to help me wrangle both kids, because it was v. cluster f'ish if you know what I mean.

And on to the this sweet face child. Waterbugs did Devyn wonders! Her first class was only her second time in the pool.  We sang songs, we floated on our backs, we cuddled in the water, and she learned how to reach for the wall and hang on all by herself!! 10 months old and she's doing this! Amazing. The Swim Whisperer, Miss Mimi, was so informative and encouraging and all around amazing. Safety first = music to this Momma's ears. AquaFit is all about teaching kids to have confidence in the water and enjoy being in the water as opposed to throwing them in and making them swim. They explained that the trauma and negative memory of being thrown in a pool and having to fend for yourself often makes young children fearful of swimming. Um, WHAT? That is Unacceptable in my book! I love love love the pool and the beach and swimming. No way do I want a kid to be traumatized about swimming! I have lots of good memories from swim lessons and pool time growing up and I want that for my children.

My god, she loved the water. It was so sweet to see her smile and laugh and giggle and blow bubbles and do everything they wanted her to. The only complaint she had was leaving my arms and going with the instructors.  She did swim from the teacher to me and vice versa. Her little diaper booty stuck above water as she did it, which was hi-larious!  Baby got back!

The pool noodle as a swim tool was genius! It allowed the babies to feel their own bodies floating in the water and helped them get horizontal in the pool and kick her legs. When it comes to swimming she can now kick her legs and reach for me or the wall when we guide her through the water. She's not fearful of going under, and she loves to sit on the edge of the pool and fall in. (She leans forward and I'm holding onto her) We practice that and I turn her around so she learns that if she ever falls into the pool she MUST turn around and reach for the wall.

It was a fun fun class as you can tell from the other little friends who were swimming with their Mommies and Daddies. It was a blast!  If you're in the Dallas area and want a great swimming class, I highly recommend AquaFit!  They have classes for all ages and water aerobics for adults. Several ladies I know take water aerobics there and love it. The pool is salt water, so gentle on your skin and so ideal for babies and children.

That's all for tonight!
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Friday, June 29, 2012

Oink, Maa, La La La!


This summer we had a playgroup rotation where each momma took a turn setting up a playdate. I was so excited for my turn. I've been wanting to work on my Dallas Mommy Bucket List, and start crossing off some of the fun local places to take the lambies. Owens Spring Creek Farm was a place I went as a kid many times, so I was so excited to take my littles.   (It's part of the Bob Evans family--- yes the chain of restaurants. Yes, the one that used to be by the Galleria and had the most decadent biscuits evah!)

It's located off Plano Road, just 2 minutes past 75 in Richardson.  (Oh, just five minutes from a fab lunch at Panera or Twisted Root?? Playdate bonus points!)

We had a blast looking at the animals in their stalls. They had huge horses that blew the kids' minds, donkeys, cows, pigs, chickens, and a sweet little kitten running loose that played hide and seek with the kids. It was a fun place to go with a group of kids. They enjoyed chasing each other and there is an open grassy area for them to play tag and parents to chill. The picnic area is pretty clutch if it's not 100+ degrees.

The kids liked looking in the museum room of the barn, seeing old wagons and stuff. It's a pretty fun way to spend about an hour or two.  They give you cups of animal feed and you get to feed the goats. Warning: turns out goats can nearly jump the fence to get the cup of feed! So keep your cups away for a more gentle, less adrenaline-packed feeding situation. Who said white goats can't jump?!! (lame... but this me on Monday night)  I was super impressed by the hand sanitizers mounted to the fence as you leave the gated feeding area. Free biscuits? No... Instant sanitizer for dirty goat licked fingers? I'm not complaining.

  The highlight for me was the hayride. Park your strollers under a shade tree and hop on. (Those with hay allergies, sorry suckas!)  It was fun and bumpy and we were so proud when the kiddies looked around for their seat belts to buckle up. Sweet little, city slickers. Ain't no buckles on your hay truck!

Price: Free for 2 and under, $5 for 3+
Ages: 1-10 would have a good time
Ease of setting up group play date: Very easy! Just email the ladies from their website. If you're not a formal playgroup or school, they still let you sign up smaller playgroups.
Misc tips: You can pack a cooler for lunch or hop over to the restaurants at Campbell and 75 or hop 5 minutes up 75 to Collin Creek Mall for more fun.
Overall rating: A good time. Once or twice a year is plenty to visit here. I'd love to go back in fall and take some cute farm pics in their pumpkin patch. Even in 110 degree weather we had a good time, but it was so hot we didn't linger here. It's big and you'll be chasing your kids (bring your stroller best suited for off-roading the rocky roads), so don't expect to hang out with the mommas while the kids entertain themselves. That piece was a bummer, mommy convo is my favorite part of playdates!
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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Who's Bad?

Do you know what does NOT bode well for me the next oh, 21 years?
The fact that I cannot get an appropriate level of angry at this child for wasting the remaining half tube of toilet paper is no bueno if I can't hone that skill to discipline her. Seriously.
Oh, you forged Mommy's signature and dotted the "i" in my name with heart? Too damn cute.
Oh, you said a parent was going to be at the mall with you, but you were really alone. You bought me some Bath & Body Works? Awww, okay.
Oh, you said you were spending the night at your friend's house but you really went to Venice Beach Minor Madness? Aw, I did that too, you ARE a Momma's girl!

If I can NOT get this under control we will have a wild child. My worst fears: drug addicted, knocked up, high school drop out. Daddy's worst fears: stripper prostitute working at a little sketchy massage parlor.

Back to the here and now though. Our little Devyn is 11 months old and has the sweetest little personality. She is quiet and calm, but a little sneaky. She'll try the usual baby tricks: splashing in the dog's water bowl, eating the dog's food, playing with the DVD cases, and of course--- going after the toilet paper. When you say, "No, no Devyn!" She gives you the little sly smile and slowly moves her hand away. Then you turn around one minute later and she is at it again. You say, "No, no Devyn!" and she busts out a giggle and shakes her head and laughs some more. Then you go to pick her up and she nuzzles into your neck and gives you a huge open mouthed kiss. And yep-- you've been charmed.

Here is the remaining evidence of our perp in action.
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How can you argue that?!

It has been decided. The Terrible 2's weren't so terrible. Sure, there were Terrible days, but nothing compares to the Trying 3's. Cade is just so f'ing cute and so damn frustrating sometimes.  When a mood swing catches you off guard, watch out.  He's way more verbal, and just trying to figure out life even more, his current class schedule appears to be Negotions & Manipulations, Snacking not Eating, and Everything Spiderman.  Not bad, right?  I'd say he's got a solid 3.5 grade point average.  (Mommy is still the expert in Negotiations, but he's closing on me).

The other day he asked me where we were going. I told him "We're going to the gym and you and Devyn get to play at Kids' Club!".  He started saying no, no, no, he's not going to go to the gym.  I told him that it's not nice to argue with Mommy. He said, "I not arguing, Mommy. I just talking. Little words, like this [he holds up his fingers and pinches them really small]. See? It's just a little talk Mommy. We just talking little words."  I was speechless. Then he proceeds to chew and swallow an imaginary something. I said, "What's that? What did you swallow?" He said, "I just swallow my argue." And walked away.

Um, okay?  A. I have never wanted to go work out more than when my 3 year old told me we weren't going to go. Strange motivation.  B.  Can he teach my students/husband to swallow their argues?  If only we truly were having "little words" instead of him arguing, that would have also been sweet progress.

Truly he does have moments when he is just a huge punk brat who makes me go cray cray. More tales his crib sheet as they come. For now, I've got to convince little man that it is cool to poop in the potty.


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Last Day of school!

Last day of school 2012!
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Finding out the Gender (& 10 months pics!)

Our sweet little girl has just had another birthday!
She is 10 months old!  I can't believe how fast this year has flown by.

It's getting harder and harder to get a monthly pic of her sitting still and smiling at the camera.
And I'm hoping that her little diaper cake that we do the monthly pics with will last another 2 months until her first birthday!  Every month I have to rebuild it. She pulls out the little tulle toppers every time now!

Her Aunt Val made these sweet little bloomers for her. Aren't they the cutest things you've ever seen! They are definitely one of my favorite things from her baby shower.  I was one of those mamas who just HAD to find out the gender as soon as possible. One of the perks of announcing your gender and the baby's name is all the sweet little custom gifts you can stare at in anticipation of baby's arrival. Having the custom stuff in the hospital for the newborn pics was another thing I just absolutely loved. I adored going into my postpartum hospital room and my mom and mother in law hung a banner with her name above my bed. It was so girly and lovely and welcoming. All the nurses thought it was so sweet!

Different strokes for different folks, though. If you are a mama who just can't see any other way but to wait until the birth to find out the baby's gender, then go for it. This Lambie Blog is just my story, and why I chose to find out to gender of my babies before they were born.

The Waiters will say, "How could you ruin the suprise?!"  Um... I didn't. I was still suprised when I found out the sex of my babies. I just could not wait another minute.  I wanted to know and plan and be prepared. I didn't want to believe in my head that the baby was one sex and then on their birth day be let down that I was wrong.  I didn't want any hint of disappointment or mixed feelings to be on their birth day. Because I know that I'm human. I know that I have desires and sometimes disappointment creeps in when you least expect that. I wanted to know just how their birth days would go. And save the best suprise for last. What they will look like.  Will she have my grandmother's hands? My husband's eyes? My hair?  Will she be quiet and calm or will she be perky and boisterous? There a SO MANY suprises when the baby comes.

The suprise of my gender day sonograms was so special. It was just hubs and I in the room with the doctor. When we found out we brought in the grandmothers. It was really special. If only Pinterest had been around at that time, I would known all about gender reveal parties and I would have thrown one of those for my friends and family.  Instead we did it the old fasioned way and announced it on Facebook with a sonogram picture. Old School, right?

My mom was pregnant three summers before she had me. A miscarriage and an infant lost due to heart defect.  Maybe it's my family history that made me want to know their gender in a way to feel closer to my unborn children. I could name them and talk to them in a way that felt more personal to me. It probably sounds so weird to The Waiters because any mama is bonded to her baby from the second she pees on the stick. And there are lots of ways to bond with your baby. This was just something that was really special and important to me. I felt like I knew them and it made me feel more confident as a new mom.

Birth class was terrifying and if I didn't have that mental image of baby girl Devyn or baby boy Cade going into my delivery I don't think I would have been able to do it. The doctors would have really had to sedate me completely to get those babies out. The gender made it so real to me. I knew it was Cade that needed to come out when I was tired of pushing and didn't think I could push any longer.  I knew it was my sweet little boy who needed to meet me. Thinking his name and knowing my little boy blue would be here soon if I kept going helped me get through. Again, you think I'm lame and that's no argument but when it came down to the wire, I was ready to give up and go home and let him be born another day. That's how hard it was to me and even though I was so ready to not be pregnant any more I would have waited another day had it not been Cade. 

Sorry Ambiguous Baby, I just couldn't have you. I needed to know who you were. Your 15 weeks and 20 weeks of being Ambiguous Baby were long enough for me. I needed my Suprise Gender Reveal earlier than 39 weeks and 41 weeks.  So, do I have any regrets? Do I feel like I missed out on one of Life's Greatest Suprises? Absolutely not. 0% regret here. I adored every minute of picking out pink and blue nurseries. Shopping for little details that I would NOT have been able to do with such anticipation and excited with a newborn baby. I would not trade those months of excitedly telling strangers and friends, "It's a girl!" for anything in the world. Hearing their advice about little girls, or little boys or having one of each was really cool. Sometimes strangers suprise you and you learn the coolest things.

Gotta go play with the littles now. Any more reminiscing and I will want to be pregnant again....Not gonna happen! (Yet at least!)
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