Thursday, December 4, 2008

It's Hard Being a Mummy, Sometimes

Evan and I are being wicked cruel and evil tonight and making Marilla sleep in the new playpen we just bought her. She is NOT taking it well. She is quite used to sleeping snuggled up next to Mommy. The only problem is, not a lot of sleeping has been happening lately-- just lots of wiggling and fussing and tossing and turning-- and Marilla hasn't been doing great, either! :-) Anyway, I know she is a well-loved child who will not be traumatized by having to sleep in a bed 18 inches from Daddy's side, but it still is hard to listen to her right now.

Today was a very busy day-- I felt like Superwoman, only probably with sorer feet. I had Cheyenne's buddy Alex, from preschool, over for lunch and the afternoon. In retrospect, 3+ hours was too long-- I'm used to letting my kids do their own thing. I just listen for silences and respond appropriately. Actually having to monitor a kid fairly closely is a whole different kettle of fish! They did have fun, though. They played with Play-Doh, and Elliott and Alex bonded over tools and trucks. A good sign was that he was upset when his Mom came to pick him up! Then, off to the doctor's office for Marilla's 9 month checkup (how is she 9 months already!!) and Cheyenne's five-year checkup (a little early for convenience's sake). Cheyenne was not looking forward to this, since there would be shots involved. It's one of the reasons I invited her friend this afternoon-- the more distractions the better. She did fine, in the end-- lots of crying ahead of time, Care Bear Band-Aids and not so much crying afterward. The brutal part of the doctor's visit for me was the weight check on Marilla.

Weight checks have been the bane of my existence for a long time now (not even counting weighing myself!) Cheyenne was in the 10th percentile when she was around 10 months, and I can remember the cross-examining the pediatrician gave me then. I went home thinking I was probably starving her and didn't even know it. With Elliott, we moved into a whole different realm of neuroses! He was only 4 1/2 pounds when he was finally able to come home from the hospital, and there was always the threat of re-hospitalization if he didn't gain enough weight at home. Adding to the fact that I was trying to breastfeed exclusively, there was quite a bit of pressure at the time! I would just be thinking he was doing so well, and then we would have the weigh in. He gained nicely for the first month or two, then he slowed way down. This is quite normal in a full-term eight month old, but in a preemie eight month old, it is not good. Evan absolutely hated doctor days. I think I dealt pretty well with the whole medically-fragile preemie thing, until they weighed him... then I came home in a puddle of tears. Despite him being such an active, amazing three-year old, it still gives me a knot in the pit of my stomach to think of weighing him. He's still a scrawny little 24 pounder-- soaking wet. Anyway, I haven't had any such qualms about Marilla. She still nurses excellently, eats solid food with gusto, munches on finger foods anytime they come her way-- she's the poster child for good nutrition. She also looks great-- chubby cheeks, sturdy thighs, nice rounded little belly. If it hadn't been for the reading today, I wouldn't have had a second thought about her. She was only 25 1/2" long, though, and 15 lb. 14 oz. Those are the 5th and 7th percentiles, respectively, meaning that barring crack mothers and dwarfs, I have the smallest baby in America. Sigh. Much as I resolve not to worry over it, I keep trying to go over in my head where I've failed her. What makes this so very ironic is that I have been overweight since about five years old. I never thought I would be dreaming up ways for people to gain weight!

So after that little boost, I did the errands runs-- bank, post office (I mailed my first packages as an Ebay seller!), then home to make supper. Then, while Superdaddy put the kids to bed, it was back out to return overdue library books (gasp!) and do a massive Wal-Mart stock up. Now, minus the decreasing whimpers from upstairs, I am enjoying an easy chair and ignoring all the toys on the floor!

Some things I have been meaning to point out-- I DID post pictures of Tyler and Julie's wedding--not a lot, but they are there. Since I started the post a long time ago, and Blogger puts the post in chronological order according to the day you first start writing a post, even if you don't actually POST it for a while, it got posted but immediately it was way down the list. Unfortunately, there aren't very many pictures of Tyler and Julie-- I mean, how important where they, anyway? :-) What happened was, I knew they were getting the rights to all their wedding pictures, so I restrained my paparazzi instincts and just enjoyed the day. They burned a CD for me to bring home with several lovely posed pictures, but it doesn't seem to work. So I'm waiting for another CD at some point. In the meantime, look in the October archive for a post about weddings.

My dear friend Amy inquired about Wordthief in a comment-- allow me to climb up on a soap box and tell you about the world's greatest game. I first played the game when we brought Cheyenne back from Alaska to introduce her to our NY family, and it was one of the few things I could do during the 6 interminable weeks of bed rest with Elliott. Marilyn, Mom, Bethaney and I are all hard-core players, and Lindsey and Dad will often join in. (Evan refuses to play with me. I'm hoping I can somehow forgive him someday.) As for how to play it, I will let the editorial review on explain it. "Stealing the words right out of an opponent's mouth--or, in this case, hand--has never been so accepted as in this vocabulary-building board game. Designed for two to four players, Wordthief involves a deck of letter cards, each of which is assigned a point value based on its frequency of occurrence in English words. The obvious way to create words is to use the seven cards dealt to you. The more interesting way to accumulate points requires that you "steal" an opponent's word and build a new word with more letters from your hand. The player who makes the most words of the greatest point value wins the round. An engaging alternative to Scrabble..." There is only one teeny, tiny problem-- it is no longer available new, so you have to buy it from an Amazon seller or troll ebay for it. Well worth the search, though! Thankfully, the deck of cards is pretty much bullet-proof-- after five years of steady use, the cards are still in great shape.

Everyone will be glad to know Marilla is finally sleeping...

I also have to follow-up the whole kids' books discussions. Marilyn pointed out the Babar books. While I didn't list them, because I figured most people knew about them, I do have most of the usual suspects-- lots of Little Golden books, Berenstain Bears, Mercer Mayer's "Just Me and ..." series, Madeline, Babar, Dr. Seuss, Toot and Puddle, Jan Brett, Eric Carle, Brambly Hedge, Winnie the Pooh, Corduroy... I even have several Bob the Builder books! Kids do love books that are all the same-- it's great just to grab a chunk of Berenstain Bears!

Well, I think I've probably procrastinated long enough. Time for Bath, Bible, and Bed! I've always been a shower-in-the-morning person, but since I started trying to get three little kids fed and out the door by 8:30 a.m., I've been forced to be a shower-at-night person. I still don't like the three feet of wet hair that requires careful planning so I don't whap my husband in the face with it in the middle of the night, but there are probably people with bigger dilemmas in their life! :-)

"And to all a good night..."


Matt, Sara and Kinsley :) said...

Hi Clover!

Lisa showed me your blog a while back and when I find time I enjoy reading it. (I love all of the Mummy wisdom and realities that you put it.)

I just noticed one of your older posts on your favorite books (thanks to this post). I will certainly be referring to it as our children's book collection grows. I just wanted to say that I also am a HUGE Sandra Boynton fan. Our collection is small but our favorite so far is "But Not the Hippopotamus" It is hysterical.

Thanks for blogging! (and I don't think I would worry about having tiny kids...aren't the Whites all SUPER skinny?)

Brandon and Elena said...

Hi! I stumbled on your blog from Brian and Michelle Washburn's page! I hear you on the weight checks thing. My son Brandon was born weighing 5 pounds 1 ounce which was about the 3rd percentile. The highest he's ever been on any weight chart is about 10th. And that's the World Health Organization Chart designed globally so it incorporates more breast fed babies. I dread weight check days, but don't worry, I don't think your kids are surrounded kids of crack pot moms...I don't think crack pot moms take their kids in for weight checks. I keep reassuring myself of that.