Friday, November 16, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday

--- 1 ---

Mae Bae isn't quite sure what to do when Patrick cries.  In the hospital he cried for about a minute and she used her feet to push her umbrella stroller into a far corner of the room while staring at him with a rather horrified look on her little face.

Thankfully he doesn't cry very often.  Throughout the day, however, a diaper change is still pretty much a guarantee of tears.  Sadie rushes over at every change, crouches down next to him, and sings a lullaby that I used to sing to her when she was tiny.  Mae generally stomps over and stands by, looking unsure of what to do (and making me a little nervous as I try to change said diaper and make sure no one is stepped on by her rather clumsy toddler feet).

Yesterday she came to the conclusion that she needed to do something and while I quickly worked she knelt down by his head and looked at his face.  Then she cupped his little head in both hands and put her face right next to his (I was ready to spring if things got even the tiniest bit rough) and finally let go and kissed him twice on the mouth.

I have to admit that my favorite part of this week is watching the three of them interact.

--- 2 ---

I survived yesterday, which basically means that I have survived this week.  Today Paul has one makeup class and then a week off for Thanksgiving.  We made it!

I think I've realized why there is a light at the end of the tunnel, for me, when it comes to my view of law school time versus post law school time.  It might sound a little bit shallow, but honestly, thinking of it this way helps me get through on a day to day, week to week and month to month basis, so bear with me.

Right now Paul's schedule means studying or class from around 9 am to around 1 am each day.  Lately I've been asking him to come home at midnight, which is an "early" night for him.  Quite a few people pointed out in the comment section of my earlier post that as a lawyer, he's going to be just as busy, if not more so when he's done with school... which may very well be true (especially since there won't be school breaks at that point!).

However... I have to say that I still kind of cling to the idea of that time for one reason: at the moment it's full time with the kids and full time at work for me, while still clipping coupons and struggling to make ends meet.

At this point, I know that at the end of a wild and crazy day as a mom, the success of my businesses directly depends on whether or not I collapse on the couch, or whether I get everyone to sleep and go into the sewing room and work for another five hours...  It used to be eight but these days, my eyes start blurring earlier and earlier.  Sales directly correspond to how much I post in my store, and how much I post is a direct result of how many hours I work so... paying the bills means staying up late no matter how I feel.

The good part of all of this is that I love sewing and I love creating new items.  But the stressful part is the ups and downs of the market and never knowing how business will work from week to week, along with the fact that right now bringing in an income is completely on my shoulders.  Thus the store stayed open while I was in the hospital and last night I was incredibly thankful when I got Patrick to sleep in his crib while I finished all the orders that are currently outstanding and breathed a major sigh of relief when they were done.

So for me I guess the major difference between now and what things will hopefully be like in two years is that I'm hoping to be working at a more leisurely pace once he's done.  I'll hopefully be able to spend more time on crafts that are gifts or giveaways or just for fun.  I plan on keeping my stores open, but the pressure of not making money to pay the gas bill or the electricity bill will (I hope) be gone.  And that would make things much, much easier to handle around here...

...which is why I still look at graduation Spring 2014 (and the bar exam that follows) as the light at the end of the tunnel!

--- 3 ---

Yesterday Mae Bae was on a roll.  She handled being cooped up in the house until about 4 pm, which was seven hours after Paul left for class (around 4 I begin to watch the hours tick by because 4 pm is when things tend to get wild now that there's no nap time in Mae's schedule).

She began her 4 pm rampage by disappearing quietly into the dining room.  I should have known that disaster was looming.  I was nursing Patrick on the couch and Sadie was building a city with blocks.  I could see the area where Mae was playing partially, she'd dragged her little rocking horse into a corner and he was rocking slightly, although I couldn't see her body.  Then I heard it.

Scratch, scratch.  Scratch, scratch.  It was the sound of a crayon on a surface that I knew wasn't paper.

I jumped up and ran into the dining room and found our little Picasso standing with one blue crayon in one hand (which she'd removed from our school supplies container... a box on a shelf that she'd never looked at twice at in the past) and the box of crayons in the other.  The surface she'd decorated was the new baby gate that Grumpa had built and installed on the kitchen doorway (thank goodness it wasn't a part of the house!).

I retrieved the crayons, despite the many tears, and put them up higher.  I'm thinking of getting some blackboard paint when I'm really up and about again, and painting both gates with it so that she can have at it with chalk... maybe that will be a goal for next week while Paul's home...

--- 4 ---

I'm fooling myself if I think the crayons, at any height, are out of Mae Bae's reach.

Sometimes items disappear off of our mantle.  The mantle is 5 feet high, and is a vertical brick climb from the floor, with an overhang that would make scaling it difficult.  I've always wondered how she does it.

Yesterday I saw exactly how half finished peg dolls waiting to be glazed have disappeared off the surface.

Mae had pushed the pack and play, which I have out for the day when I might put Patrick down safely in it, over to the mantle.  It was still about two and a half feet away and I watched, my disbelief growing, as she climbed onto the edge of the fence of the play pen and balanced, her feet shoulder width apart and her hands outside of her feet.  Once she was steady she let go with her hands and stood up on the edge, then reached forward and grabbed the edge of the mantle.  After a moment of finding her balance she let go of the mantle with one hand, retrieved the binkie that she'd seen from the floor, pushed herself back in some amazing feat of balance that I can hardly fathom, sat down on the edge of the pen and then dropped down to the floor and went back to playing.

Maybe I need to start looking for a rock climbing gym...

--- 5 ---

Patrick slept in his bassinet for several hours yesterday.  This was a major victory.  I love holding him and wearing him in his wrap but when it comes to getting things done late at night, bassinet time becomes a must (or at least, something that I desperately want!).  So helping him sleep in the bassinet is definitely worth putting some time into.

So far it's just involved putting him down over and over again and picking him up whenever he cries, calming him down, changing or feeding or burping him if he needs it and then putting him back into the bassinet and hoping he'll sleep.  Some of the naps are five minutes and one was one hour, but they're enabling him to get a good nap and they're enabling me to get a little bit done for my store!

--- 6 ---

I'm excited about the prospect of being up and about again in the near future.  I can't wait to go outside, even if our world has been increasingly icy week by week (I'm even more thankful for our time in Florida, because I don't think I could ever have appreciated cold like this if I hadn't missed it for a year!).

I'm also thrilled by little things like being able to sleep on my back or stomach and being able to expand my lungs and take a deep breath.  Those three things make sleep so much easier!  I think I'm sleeping better now than I did for the last trimester of pregnancy!

--- 7 ---

I'll have to set another goal for the day: take more pictures.  The one drawback to Patrick being up in my arms or a wrap all the time is that he doesn't get super photographed the way the girls did in their bassinets when they were asleep.  Today's goal is to change that.  Yesterday the camera made it downstairs.  Today I'll actually use it!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


  1. I'm so happy for you guys! Cam, you are so very blessed. I think about all of us in blended families or single moms, struggling. No gas in the car, husband thinking of leaving... I'm so grateful to you. I think about what I could have had, and what I can teach my girls they can have. You have a true partner and friend in Paul. It is a wonderful model for us moms to see what a real, healthy relationship looks like. I'm hoping your life is what my children's will be closer to than my own. Thank you so much for sharing your life here. It is positive outlet and a window into something Better. I'm so grateful to you today!

  2. Cam, I wonder if something other than a typical bassinet might help Patrick sleep. We got a Fisher-Price "SnugaBunny" Rock n' Play Sleeper. They also make a version without the cute bunny insert that costs even less (I got a terrific deal on the one I bought.) Here is a picture:

    My daughter calls it the "baby taco". It is slightly angled, so helps babies with any reflux issues, and comes to a bit of a "V" at the bottom so the baby feels "snuggled" and secure. It also rocks slightly when they move if it's on a hard floor. It gets rave reviews. I wish that my other daughter had that when Ben, the wild man, was a newborn, as I think everyone would have gotten far more sleep!

    Something like this might be a good investment in your sanity!!!

    God bless!


  3. So true, money is short but you are very blessed. I love reading your blog so I can smile. I have enough money, but last night put my daughter (13yo) in a mental hospital because she has been cutting herself and become suicidal. I would give all the money we have to just make her better. Not enough tears in the world to fix that pain.

  4. Ahh I love reading your quick takes. Mae Bae seems like an amazing climber! Smart, too, to figure out how to achieve her aims.

    Looking forward to seeing more of Patrick.

  5. Light at the end of the tunnel = paid vacation days! School vacations are nice but I can't wait to be able to take some days on our schedule. You understand- so I don't have to pray I go into labor on a Thursday evening so he can take off three days and only miss one class.

  6. Angela, my heart hurts for you. I will keep you and your daughter in my prayers.

    God bless.


  7. dixieagle, thank you :) I would SO love to go back to those toddler/preschool days! I am feeling better though... I'm sleeping well since I know she is being watched after, and the doctor said there is very good hope of a full recovery - it will just take time and work. So, I am breathing a little better now. Still have NO IDEA of why she is having such trouble. sniff......

  8. Praying for you guys too Angela!

    I haven't written about it much (at all?) here, but I struggled with depression when I was in college and am living proof that with help and lots of work a full recovery is definitely possible! Prayers!

    And thank you all for the reminder of how fortunate we are! It's something that I know, but it can be easy to forget!

  9. We, too have had some major issues with depression and anxiety in our family. With prayers, love, understanding and proper medical care (absolutely key!!!) those affected are happy, well adjusted adults; it is, however, an ongoing process.

    God bless!


  10. Sounds like you need a locking cabinet for your school supplies like a wardrobe or something. Then keep the keys on your person like housekeepers of old. :) I remember the Road to Avonlea episode called Proof of the Pudding where Felicity locked the cupboard cabinets to keep Felix from eating all the food while their parents were away. It's funny how we don't have locks on our cabinets anymore. BTW: if you've never seen Avonlea (or Road to Avonlea) you should check it out. I loved it as a little girl and I bet yours would too. There are seven seasons and they came out in the 1990s on CBC and Disney.


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