Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Baby of Mine.

Tonight, Brock got scared. He went to bed, and about twenty minutes later, I heard him upstairs crying and calling my name. I walked up to his room and opened the door to find my tiny little boy sitting in his bed with a few tears streaming down his cheeks. "You lay here, mommy?" he proposes. How can I refuse? I walk over and get in his full size bed and lie next to him. He tries to cover himself with the little fleece baby blanket that he prefers to the huge navy blue and green plaid down comforter meant for the bed, "it's stuck, mommy." Oops, I have laid on the corner. So, we get the baby blanket situated, and Brock rolls over to face the wall, hugging his two Giraffees. "You stay here?" He asks of me. And I say, "Of course, sweetie, I love you." And, without moving or looking at me, he just replies, "I love you too, mommy." And to that, I move in closer, so I can cuddle all 30 pounds and kiss the cheek of my oldest baby boy. We just lay there for a few minutes. I can feel potential tears welling up in my eyes; what emotion provokes this response? Pure happiness? Relaxation? Reassurance that my independent 2.5 year old still needs his mommy? Just love? Whatever it is, I hope it never goes away. I hope in the future, though they may become fewer and farther between, I still have the opportunity to shed a tear over sweet moments with this baby of mine. Goodnight, sweet Brock.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Blueberry Pickin'

A friend recently said to me, "I've sensed that life just can't be busy enough for you." And this statement instantly struck me as entirely true. For as long as I can remember, I have always been slightly frustrated that it is physically impossible to be more than one place at one time, or to play four sports WELL in one season, or that we are limited on a day by day, minute by minute basis by the element of time. To me, life is short, therefore we have to pack in as much of it as possible during our flash of an existence.

This is not to say that I don't stop to smell the roses every so often, or to pick the blueberries in this case. Not only do I love life, I appreciate it, I wish I could savor it more frequently, for longer (which manifests into blogging).
My absolute passion for life. Passion for my family. Passion for new experiences. Gives me an endless supply of energy and motivation. Days like this past Wednesday, just 2 days before I started my Family Medicine residency orientation, are the kind of days that blow me away and make me thankful for every opportunity I have been given, created or utilized in this teeny bleb of a lifetime. And I got to share this moment with my husband, two sisters, two sons, and nephew (which probably made it become the wonderful, memorable day that it was).

And, most importantly, I never knew blueberries were so scrumptious! The slight warmth of the sun adds just that special something to that tiny round blue berry of goodness.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Going to Miami...

My Danish swimming friend, Tina, from college scheduled a trip to the states for July. I think she may have been kind of joking when she sent me an email saying I should try to come down to Miami and join her and Maggie, another Hoosier swimmer, but I took it seriously and bought my flight immediately. We then found out that Colleen, a 3rd swimmer, was visiting this weekend as well, because her sister located in Southern Florida just had her 3rd little boy. It snowballed from there, and 6 of us were able to have mini reunion! The MANY absent com padres were definitely missed, but we managed to have fun despite the missing pieces...
Fun in the sun. Nothing beats Florida beaches. The water has always been clear and warm in my experience.
Fun with dining. Nothing beats Florida Grouper! And generally, all the seafood is to die took me many coastal visits to finally realize that I actually enjoy fish. Living in the landlocked Midwest does not provide much opportunity for fresh, wonderful, seafood.
Fun at the outlets malls! Pretty sure Miami/Ft. Lauderdale has the biggest outlet center I have ever experienced. Overwhelming to say the least. This shopping trip did inspire a couple $100+ heel purchases (not by me, your welcome Matt) but did nearly caused me to drop a couple hundo on clothing for the boys as I discovered "Crew Cuts". Apparently, J.Crew has a children's section!? Not sure if this is a good or bad thing for me.

The weekend proved to really be relaxing, enjoyable and full of girl talk. Amazing how 6 people can all go 6 different ways and live in 6 different cities yet fall right into place when together in one house. And a spectacular house it was! Maggie has quite the set up there in sunny Florida.

Can't wait to visit again.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Curtis welcomes sleep. When you lie him in his crib, especially at night, you can see his body go limp, his eyes roll back, and I am fairly certain he lets out a sigh of welcoming relief. See, like most NORMAL people, too must stimulus overloads little Cucky. He needs downtime to reboot. And he enjoys it.

Brock, on the other hand, may have inherited my distaste of sleep. He has fought going to sleep for the entirety of his tiny life. You see, too much stimulus, well, stimulates him. He has a very hard time winding down. He is absolutely excited and passionate about life. He has no time to slow down. He does not want to miss a thing. Though, there have been a few moments that he has worn himself to complete exhaustion and literally begged to go to bed. Oh, how I love Summer.

Niether method is right or wrong. Curtis is not lazy for enjoying sleep, and Brock is not smarter for wanting to experience more. They are just different. Thankfully, they do share one sleep habit...when they are down, they are DOWN. Those boys exhaust themselves each and everyday. They need every bit of 10 hours of sleep, sometimes 11 or 12, and they take it.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Absolutely Elated

Matt and I are planners. We pride ourselves in making decisions, sticking to them, and being successful. Sometimes, maybe even too much. Hey, it's how we be. But, I can tell you this much, Baby #3, was not planned. And I LOVE it! I kind of feel like a rebel right now. I mean, how sad is that? A third child, that we have always known we wanted, is arriving a year early, and that is as crazy as we get!?

The whirlwind of emotions began on the toilet. I peed on a stick, and watched, and of course hoped to see that extra line (I don't know about you ladies, but every single time I have EVER taken a pregnancy test, I have always secretly, if not openly, hoped it would be positive. Every time.) Then, when it actually did start appearing, I of course had to reread the instructions for the millionth time to make sure I was seeing things right. This whole time, trying to contain a giant smile.

I walk out of the bathroom, still trying not to grin, to hand Matt the test. "What do you see?" Mind you, he had no clue I was taking a test or suspecting a pregnancy. And he, ever so calmly, says, "Huh.? Well, I don't know what it looked like to begin with..." Let me clue you in, the same as every other pregnancy test in the world: blank. And that is that for a moment.

Then the moment of panic. Though, really I wasn't panicked, I would say it was more like shame or a feeling of complete irresponsibility. Who am I to preach that I know all about the birds and the bees, blah, blah, blah? Obviously, I don't heed my own advice. I dislike being a hypocrite. This phase, however, is very short-lived, and overshadowed by sheer excitement.

We get to have another baby! A bonus baby! I have been fretting over the timing for number three, and my questions have been answered. This is so fun. It is a complete shock, and the best kind of surprise you can ever receive. I am just beaming. I want to tell everyone and anyone that I am with child. It helps too, that I have minimal to no truly awful symptoms yet. But I also don't know, for sure, how far along I am. I have a very good "educated guess", and that is a due date of February 21st.

When I recently asked Matt if he was ok with it. He replied, with such sincerity, "Erin, I love those 2 boys more than anything in the world, and they make me so happy. I get to increase my love and happiness by 50%. So, yes, I am OK with it."

Perhaps 2011 isn't so bad afterall (though the baby will be born in 2012, and all of the remaining 2011 will be filled with pregnancy, so...??)

Sunday, June 12, 2011


Pseudocyesis is the medical term for a false pregnancy. Pseudocyesis can cause many of the signs and symptoms of pregnancy, and often resembles the condition in every way except for the presence of a fetus. And I took probably a dozen pregnancy tests after I had Brock because of it. Something smelled bad. Test. I felt nauseous. Test. I was extra tired one afternoon. Test. You catch my drift.

So, with Curtis, I vowed to not be psychotic and to significantly reduce my number of pregnancy tests. I must admit, it's been really hard:

Recently, I have been feeling intensely scatter-brained. But that nearly always happens to me in the Summer. I think long breaks from school make me feel stupid. So nothing to worry about.

And the transient moments of vertigo and light-headedness, is most likely due to an increase in exercise, increase in sun time, inadequate hydration and decrease in calories for my crash Miami diet.

Then, my face randomly broke out a month or so ago, and has stayed that way. I mentioned to Matt that "if I didn't know better, I would say this is first trimester skin" as I just don't get pimples. Obvious explanation though, I have started weaning Curtis and therefore about to resume my monthly cycle. Fertility here I come.

And the last 3 nights, when I awoke up from deep slumber at about 2am feeling like I was going to vomit, I immediately regreted the 4 Boulevard Wheats or the large tub of popcorn with jalepenos from earlier in the night - that kind of binge eating or drinking just does not make you feel right.

And when I was shopping in Target and wanted to buy V8 and colby jack cheese, the staples of my diet the first 15 weeks with Brock. I thought, this is because I am trying to diet, and these are easy, low cal/high nutrient snacks.

Then, when I randomly had a huge fever blister pop up on my back, as it has done at some point during both my previous pregnancies, I explained it away as my sun burn. Must have irritated a nerve.

So, this afternoon, when I finally gave in to a rare fit of exhaustion, and proceeded to be woken from my nap by an extremely vivid dream, I realized I couldn't continue driving myself nuts like this. I just need to take a test for goodness sake. Pseudocyesis or not. The dream consisted of me expressing my disbelief that "Aunt Flo" had not yet visited since Curtis was down to nursing only once a day! And EVERY SINGLE PERSON in the dream told me that is was probably because I was pregnant. My mother forced me to take a pregnancy test in the dream...and it was positive. Therefore, I woke up, went straight to the medicine closet, peed on a stick, and there you have it. Baby O'Laughlin #3. Due date: Unknown.

Oh, and 6 hours later, test number two...still positive.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


As the title of Curtis' 7 month update post, I am sure you all find this one to be odd. Well, frankly, it is perfectly fitting. And I will tell you why.

Matt could not have said it better, "2011 sucks. I hate you. Go away." So far, this year, Matt has been laid off. I did not Match. Our dog suddenly died. Three huge, huge, life-altering events for the worse. Plus a few other lesser in significance, but also depressing, irritating and inconvenient events. And then, it suddenly dawned on me. KARMA.

Curtis is such a freakishly wonderful baby, he has stolen all the good juju from our family. That has to be it. No one is allowed to have a child like this and just get away with it. No one.

He was born on his due date. I hoped and prayed he would remain put until the month of October expired. He complied.

He was born in less than 6 hours. I didn't feel a thing. Hardly had to push.

He nursed like a 3 month old. I never felt chained to him because he ate only every 3-4 hours or so, and only for 20 minutes. I still wonder at his mammoth (but declining in percentile) size.

He slept like a 3 month old. Not only did he begin sleeping through the night by 4 weeks, but you can just lie him in the crib. No rocking, patting, feeding, etc. Lay him on his side, with a pacifier and a blanket bear, and he is out.

He smiles like an idiot. I know I have said it before, but EVERYONE comments on this. I never thought the question, "Is he always that happy?" could get old, but it has. I mean, Curtis is sooo happy, that I make fun of him when he cries. Because it's not even real. He just wants to make sure I am aware that he would be unhappy if he were a normal infant.
He requires little to no attention. Which actually has the opposite affect and makes one want to hang out with him all the more. Just the other night, we were at The Salty Iguana enjoying some 2 for 1 tacos. and about 35 minutes in, the dad at the table next to us blurts, "I mean, is he always that good?" Yes. "Because we had to speed eat when these guys were little." Pointing to his three children, and going on to insist his wife turn around and look at the baby that, "hasn't made a peep the entire meal and is now falling asleep." (I would like to add that he must have been tired if he had not made a peep, because that kid is vocal. Despite his mobility, I always know where he is.)

He is the perfect match for Brock. He is tough and laid back. So, not only can he take a beating, but he doesn't even care about it. He just observes Brock and his high energy craziness, smiles or screams at him, and goes about his business.

He loves the pool! Even more than Brock did. Which is unbelieveable. And wonderful. But why am I surprised? He loves everything. I just look in his half-moon, squinty smiling eyes, and think, "what a sweetie" no less than 177 times a day.

Food is about the only thing he gets "upset" about...but as I said, it's not really a real cry. I recently found him chewing on something...a piece of carpet! I mean, I can't exactly go strand by strand and make sure none are loose enough for a tiny baby to pull out and eat. Lets hope he has a strong stomach. I just love that kid. Love him, love him. And this all may seem like bragging, but I have nothing else I can say about him. With Brock I could always throw a few "he is great, but..." comments, but there is no but with Curtis. When there is, trust me, it is going straight onto this blog.

I am not going to lie, I would probably trade waking up once in the night for Tali to still be around. And I might even prefer to put up with some general fussiness to have matched in OB/gyn...but as for Matt's job, the jury is still out on that one. The boys and I have LOVED having Matt around all the time and his photography has improved and grown. Could have been a blessing in disguise. So, I am not going to trade anymore of za Cuck's fabulous traits.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Peepee in the Potty?

Perhaps I am jumping the gun here, and perhaps he will "revert" back to having accidents, but I think Brock might be potty-trained. I honestly went at it without any plan in mind whatsoever. I bought some pull-ups a few weeks ago. I had these thick, trainer undies that my sister gave me when Xander was through with them, and that's about it. On Thursday, when he mentioned wanting to peepee in the potty, as he has been suggesting for a few months now, I took him in there with the attitude, OK, we are going to do this. He stood at the toilet. Waiting. Waiting. Getting distracted. Refused to quit trying. 4 minutes later, I got bored and summoned Matt. Matt got him to sit on the trainer seat and patiently sat with Brock, in the bathroom for 45 minutes. Nothing.

Friday, same deal, only this time, we armed him with a book and some toys. I also said we could do anything he wanted, get ice cream, go to the pool, etc. I would like to add, that Leah and I had our make-up done at Macy's earlier in the day, so my offering the pool was gambling that he would yet again be unsuccessful. I think he sensed that the ONLY way he was going to get to go to the pool that day was by peeing in that toilet. And, by george, that kid was not getting up until he did. He sat there for over an hour. He outlasted both Matt, and I. We had left the bathroom area and gone on to do other things about the house. And Brock just sat on the toilet. That is the LONGEST that child has EVER sat still in his entire 30 months of existence. Who knew? Stubborness comes in handy sometimes. We then hear a little voice saying something about going peepee. We walk into the bathroom, and there is Brock, standing and pointing into the toilet at yellowish tinted water and some bubbles...YAY!

We clapped our hands, jumped up and down, washed our hands, told Brock he was a big boy, gave him the mini Reese's that we had set on the shelf above the toilet as a reminder of his reward for going potty in the toilet, hugged, kissed, clapped some more, then called the grandparents and an aunt or two. After the over-the-top insane little celebration, we then reminded him he could have or do anything, and I suggested ice cream (repeating, don't say pool, don't say pool in my mind over and over and over.) "Pool!" Of course. So, Matt took him to the pool.

He hasn't really looked back since. I annoyed him for the next day constantly asking him if he needed to go potty. I quickly realized there was no need to constantly pester him. Apparently, he WANTS to use the toilet and let's us know when it's time! He has gone #2 a couple times. This is where the accidents might come in...he is not a great pooper. I just don't get it. I thought this whole process was supposed to be a lot harder. I think there is a lot to be said about just waiting until your child is ready to do things themself. My and Matt's parenting style has always been to just follow the kiddos' cues with some mild encouragement and instruction along the way. Looks like it's worked (until I update the blog tomorrow with word that he is refusing or peed all over the house...)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011