Saturday, March 30, 2013

My blog, your blog.

I discovered that my blog has been randomly linked to another...though, perhaps I should be concerned privacy-wise.  I really am not.  I love sharing my thoughts and ideas.  This is why I created a blog.  And now, it has been linked for that very purpose.  To share thoughts and ideas.  Glad I could help perfect another woman's little boy's room.

Thursday, March 28, 2013


Pregnancy. Such an up and down ride. Emotionally, physically and spiritually. That second line that you so desperately watch for, every time you take a test, appears. For days, maybe even weeks, you had tried not to get your hopes up. Tried not to already begin envisioning life with your new child. And there it is, a cheap piece of plastic, trash to anyone who sees it, suddenly signifies a whole new life. Literally. The immediate sensation is amazement. Then pure joy, happiness, excitement, disbelief, anxiety. But mostly just satisfaction and a little impatience. That is the first hill and drop of the roller coaster.

For the next week, you want to tell it to the world! It's so new and exciting. You almost wonder if it's true, except for those familiar first trimester symptoms creeping up on you. Each day a bit more tired. Each day a bit less hungry. A bit more nauseous. Everything smells. Dreams are weird, nights are restless. By 7 weeks, you don't even think you have to tell anyone, they can see it in your tired, exhausted, cranky eyes. Your oily, broken out face. It's all you can do to make it through each day. You try to remain happy, remind yourself of what a little blessing it is you are carrying. Creating. You comfort yourself by repeating that these horrid symptoms which make me feel like death, are only coming from this teeny, tiny, lovely miracle because he or she is still growing well and doing fine. They are a constant reassurance and nuisance. Weeks 7 through 10 are a somewhat dark time, for me anyway. A time when I repeat over, and over, and over: never again. Yet here we are, pregnancy number four! And finally, by week 13 (if you're lucky) you are through that tunnel, despite a bit of vomit along the way.

As your energy increases, your spirits lift. Survival mode subsides, and suddenly, you are excited again. Baby consumes your mind. Did I just feel it kick!? Is it a boy or a girl? Will he look like me? This one has to have brown hair and eyes. I can't wait to meet it! What should we name him? Should we find out what we're having? Even the siblings begin to sense more of the baby's existence, though you're still not showing. They kiss your belly, say "hi" to the baby. Make guesses as to it's sex. It's all so much fun, just a few weeks difference and you've already forgotten the tunnel you've been through and have conveniently avoided thinking about the tunnel yet to come...

...for now, I will stick with coasting. I will enjoy my second trimester. And hope for a smooth transition into the third. I love you 4.O. For now.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Snow, love and well, snow.

My life has been enriched because of my children.  They are still so very new, with the oldest being only four, but I think I will feel this way forever.  I hardly remember a time without them. Yet, they have only existed for one 7th of my life, and a 3rd of my relationship.  Matt and I spent over 8 years together without any kids involved.  What did we do with all the space in our house?  All the money in our pocket?  All the love in our hearts?  It was all wasted before they joined our happy home.

Kids open your eyes to so many things.  They show you the true value and potential of time.  They help you see that just 3 hours at home with them after work is more than enough time to: enjoy a family dinner.  Set up a car track and play.  Make fart noises by fluffing their father's belly.  Change a few diapers.  Play in the bath.  Read a book.  Ask their pitch and rhythmically challenged mother to sing the Wheels on the Bus, over and over, only to then reveal that she's been recorded on the iPad for the last 6 minutes.  Eat dessert.  To play airplane by lifting them, one by one, with your legs, into the air.  Interspersed in these activities is lots, and lots of infectious giggling.  A few time out sessions.  Some dramatic crying, sometimes while glancing into the mirror to be just sure they're making the most pitiful face possible.  There's a good chance someone will get bit.  And, definitely someone will get kissed.  And every so often, someone will get kicked, or purposefully shoved face first into the couch. A pillow fight might occur.  The dog's ears will get squeezed until he yelps. Something will break. Someone will scream.  Then someone else will scream.  Then three little boys will all scream simultaneously.  Then a loud, house shattering, booming voice will scream, and scare the crap out of the previous 3 screamers, who will stand in shock.  Then laughter erupts from all.  Or, more likely, it's just bedtime.

They show you that the third or fourth snow storm in March, no matter  how much you despise that white powdery stuff, is an opportunity to explore the neighborhood.  An opportunity to throw snowballs.  Make snow angels.  Eat fresh, untouched snow.  Take a sled ride.  Shovel.  Run and fall without injury.  Listen to the silence, that exists early in the morning when the whole city is padded with 8 inches of snow.  Remind you that there is nothing better than hot chocolate after a good play outside in the cold.

They show you how to appreciate sleep.  You will never take a good, solid, 8 hours of sleep for-granted again, after having a newborn.  Even with the incredible sleepers I've been so luckily blessed with as children, I appreciate my sleep.  I now savor my sleep.  I never liked sleep before kids.  But I know the potential that exists with all 3 of those little heads soundly sleeping in nearby rooms.  Any given night could turn into a sleepless, up every hour, bed filled with little ones, without a warning or notice kind of night.  Thankfully, for us, this has happened, well, once, maybe?  But now, I take it when I can, and at 12 weeks pregnant, that is ALL THE TIME.  Just in case one of the kiddos got it in their head to wake frequently.

Mostly, they show you how to think of someone else before yourself.  This is a lesson that many religion classes tried to ingrain in my brain.  A mantra many try to preach.  Have a couple kids, and it happens naturally.  It is humbling, gratifying, amazing, to put another before yourself.  I thought this lesson would be a hard one for me to swallow, adjust to, adapt.  Most would not describe me as self-sacraficing, or giving, really.  I am now, and always will be for my boys.  we never hesitate to spend money on them.  Provide them with education, fun, experience. Whether it's just a dinner night out or a 5 day vacation, Matt and I do nothing but talk about our kids, laugh about their little antics, and miss them when we are away.  Sure, we have some adult talk, but invariably, our discussion returns to those babies.  One day they will be teenagers.  They will test our patience.  Make me second think my current thoughts about them.  But our brains will never, ever function as they did before kids.  Thank goodness.  As I said, my life has been enriched by them.  Improved.

Kids show you a new kind of love.  They show you that love is never-ending.  Always expanding.  Fun.  Beautiful.  Amazing.  And grand.  For this, I will always thank them, and never expect thanks in return.  I am theirs.

Monday, March 18, 2013

St. Patrick's Day.

In the car, today, on our way home from lunch, unprompted, Brock states, "I really like St. Patrick's Day."  I agreed.  I have always like this holiday. And I liked it well before I could drink alcohol. For many reasons, mostly based on the fact that green is my favorite color.  Like, I intensely love the color green.  On a subconscious (or is it subconscience, wink wink) level, I think anyone with the name "Erin" has an affinity toward anything Irish. Also, it's a holiday based purely around what the Irish do best: friends and family.  You thought I was going to say drink, didn't you?  Sorry if this offends anyone, but the Irish are not known for their work ethic, intense business sense or drive to succeed.  Often, they chip into profit by bartering services to help a friend in need.  I know my father does.  I am quite sure half his income is services traded; a piece of glass for an oil change.   And the line between friends and family is a very, very thin one.  I have alluded in the past that my and Matt's relationship borders on incest, but that is merely because, to the Irish, a close friend is equal to blood.  Often, I am told people are my "cousin" or "uncle", but when asked to trace the bloodline, it rarely gets accomplished. The Irish are truly a jolly folk, who enjoy great camaraderie, food and drink.  And what are the holidays for, besides those three things?  Thus making, Saint Patrick's Day and wonderful holiday indeed.  A 4 year old even picked up on it...doubt it had anything to do with the candy being tossed to him while he stood shivering in the cold watching the parade.
Because I love this holiday so much, it surprises me how frequently it is neglected on my blog.  Like Thanksgiving, another holiday with long-standing tradition for me, St. Patrick's day is the same every year.  Perhaps the permanence of the routine for these days makes me skip over recording it's happening.  Whatever the reason may be, I am here to rectify the matter today.  This is my 3rd St. Paddy's day pregnant.  And not just pregnant, but 1st trimester pregnant, which makes EVERYTHING a little less enjoyable.  Yet, I still have a great time.  The Lillig's continue to have their brunch.  The crew continues to travel to Californos for the day.  And Mimi, or this year Martha, continues to provide a warm home with warm Reubens at the end of the day.  With drinking the whole way through.  I will always attempt to get the day off for St. Patrick's day, because, I, like my fellow Irishmen, love my family. And friends.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

11 Weeks and then some.

  • I am done with ICU.  While on ICU, I did nothing but work and sleep.  Quite literally.  I feel as though I did not see a single family member nor speak to a single friend.  I worked shifts while trying to traverse the horrid 2 feet of snowfall in early March, which only made my life all the more miserable.  The only favor the snow did for me, is make me feel less guilty for doing nothing but sitting on my a$$ all month. Couldn't possibly go outside.  I dislike snow.  Hate it really.  Have never cared for it.  Perhaps, it's the Lebanese in me, but I LOVE Summer.
  • If this pregnancy has taught me anything, it's energy.  Energy is the secret to my madness.  Normally, I can't stop the thoughts, theories, observations, aspirations, adventures, OCD.  But for these past 6 weeks, all I can think about is bed.  Or couch.  Sitting.  Lying down (but not too soon after eating).  Closing my eyes.  Even sending an email, or paying online bills, or showering requires too much effort. I understand laziness.  If there are people out there with this energy level at all times, I wouldn't want to do anything either.  Nothing. Non-pregnant, I am constantly on the go, piling my plate, filling my glass, because the wheels are always spinning.  If I don't keep myself busy, I literally go nuts.  I blog, because so many thoughts, memories, happiness fills my head at any given moment, that it must be dumped somewhere.  And I am not big on wastefulness.
  •  We took the boys to the library this past weekend.  We've taken them a few times, but this time, we actually checked out some books.  This is the first time we have brought home library books.  The boys love them!  I love them, because, they love them!  It's this weird thing.  They seem to know these books are special, different than their own extensive collection.  I don't even think we have read every book in our house, but they want to hear these new ones.  I think this will become a regular thing.  Once I have energy again, that is.
  •  George is fully walking now.  He is hilarious.  A ham.  Always performing for his parents, siblings, grandparents...well, anyone who will smile or laugh at him.  He is my favorite right now.  Shhhh!!!  Don't tell the others.
  • Curtis, well, it's like Curtis suddenly realized that he is two and supposed to behave like a little $h*# ALL the time.  Sweet, adorable, happy, do no wrong, make everybody happy, Curtis.  He still sleeps like a champ (except when he doesn't.)  He still eats like a champ (if it's gummy bears, or exactly what he wants.) Everything is "mine" and by mine, I mean his.  He just says "No!" in response to everything whether he means it or not.  Seriously, he will grab the gummy bears from my hand as he yells no.  Just because he is two, and two year olds say "No!"  He drops to the ground in a tantrum at the slightest hint of not getting his way, and the middle of the street is no hindrance to this excellent decision-making process.  Brock was a completely different kind of two year old.  So, this is my first experience with the Terrible Two's.  Good riddance.
  • Brock becomes more and more a little boy everyday.  I have begun to refer to the bottom 2 children as "the babies" and he does the same.  He has reasonable things to say, I mean, you can carry on a legitimate conversation for quite some time, if he is willing to separate from an iPad or iPhone for a moment. He continues to amaze me.
  • 4.O, well, don't have much to say about this one yet.  Except, that so far, he has not disappointed me, and has lived up to his brothers' pregnancy symptom standards.  So kind of him to not give two craps about how his mom feels and to just suck the life out of me, so that he can be a nice, what, 12 pound baby!?  Is that what it's going to be?  Truly, George was the kindest in utero child.  Even came 6 days early!  Perhaps 4.O will try to one up him on this...I like the idea of September 27th (ok, technically, the 26th would be one-upping, but I don't like that date as much).  On the plus side, I have lost 5 pounds.  And I cannot wait to meet our 4th little munchkin!!  FOUR!!!  
And those few thoughts were as much as I could muster.  I will leave you with, yet another, baby brained moment:

Saturday, March 9, 2013


Brock walks up to me with this pad of paper in hand:

He then says, is this where the baby is? And I look at him bewildered. He is constantly kissing and patting my belly. He knows full well, the baby is in there, not in that pad of paper. I go to reach for it, to see if perhaps someone drew a picture of a baby on one of the pages. But Brock, noting my confusion, directs my attention to the logo of the pad and restates his question, "Is this where the baby is at? Is this where you go to get your baby? Like last time?".

It dawns on me, he noticed the Shawnee Mission Medical Center emblem. He remembered this emblem from the few times he stepped foot in that hospital, as a young 3 year-old, and perhaps from when he was not quite 2. He has helped pick up two little brothers from a building that bears this signage. That young boy's power of observation never, ever ceased to amaze me. He is brilliant. The dots are always connecting. That motor of a brain is constantly running. I hope he never loses that curiosity. And shall he always remain astute.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Easy Targets.

Kids are such easy targets.  They get blamed for just about everything, because they do most of it.  Tonight, when I walked into the boys room for the bedtime ritual, I noticed some clothes in the trash can.  I immediately, point it out and ask who did it.  To which, Brock replied, without hesitation and very matter-of-fact-ly, "Curtis did."  I instantly believed him, but asked him to put them in the dirty clothes hamper for me, he happily complied. Weird.  Anyway, as I watched him carry a pair of navy socks with an orange stripe, then a navy t-shirt, then another navy t-shirt, then one argyle sock, it occurred to me.  How strange?  Those were the exact 5 items I picked up and put in the dirty hamper not 20 minutes ago.  Or, did I put them in the hamper?  Perhaps, I, the mom, the accuser, am the one that put them in the trash can by mistake!  The 2 receptacles are close in proximity.  They are both circular.  They are both mesh in style. But I have zero recollection of where I actually placed the items.  No clue.  Signs are pointing to me.  Afterall, what 2 year old stops after pulling only 5 items from the hamper and transferring them to the trash can.  Generally, 2-year-olds are all or nothing kind of kids. Can't have a gummy bear?  Then I am going to scream about it for 20 minutes.  Can have a gummy bear?  I am giggly and happy as a peach. You know how it goes.  Looks as thought baby brain may have struck again.  Not sure how much more of this our family can tolerate.  Hopefully, I do not forget or neglect a human here in the next few months.  A missing child seems a lot more stressful than a missing sock.