Monday, February 27, 2006

Blog blues...

This is what happens to a blog when you have little to no computer access, a sick toddler and a sick husband acting like a toddler. Oh and did I mention that I'm pregnant and struggling to ingest protein every 2 hours or so in order to avoid puking...... more on this later. I promise.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Traveling with a Toddler, the joys!

Well, our flight home totally sucked! Unfortunately, I was sat in the very last row of the plane with no window, no leg room, no adjusting the seat... I am so thankful that I didn't drag the car seat with me this time, because there was no empty seat on the whole plane!!!

The man who sat next to me, was pretty much the last person to get on the flight and he bitched like crazy about having to sit in the back. Granted he was super tall and the seats were really small, but I kept thinking "Hey, at least you aren't holding a squirmy toddler in your lap, who insists on sucking on you!!" He also had the freedom to stand up and go to the bathroom as needed instead of holding it for hours like I did. I got the feeling he was horrified at sitting next to a squirmy toddler and a feaky dreadlocked mama who kept, gasp NURSING her baby! He didn't say anything like that, but I got that vibe....

After squirming, crying, and kicking the seat in front of us, Mielle was kind enough to fall asleep in my lap while nursing, soon after takeoff. I was so grateful for the repreive from tempting her with books, toys and snacks, but after an hour and a half of holding as still as possible, while she snored I was going crazy. With my arms full of sleeping child, nothing to read, nothing to listen to, my butt going numb, unsure of the time or how much longer the flight was gonna take, and no one to talk to (as the grumpy jerk guy next to me was sound asleep) I was going completely insane! Seriously, I was stuck in my own head feeling all twichy and nervous about seeing Jerome and wondering WHAT TIME IS IT?????

So, Mielle finally wakes up right around the time I start worrying that my bladder is gonna actually EXPLODE. I gather her up, grab a diaper and wake up the dude, so I can finally go pee. As I stand up, the bell dings telling all passengers to buckle up! Needless to say, I WENT to the bathroom anyway. Changing diapers on a plane is no fun by the way. I rushed through a quick diaper change and sit down to pee with the plane bucking about wildly. My heart is pounding, I'm thinking landing is emminent, but I must release my bladder. I gather up Mielle without even taking the time to put her pants back on and rush back to my seat. Ironically we didn't land for at least 20 more minutes, I was stressing pointlessly.

So anyway, I sit back down get a big bib on Mielle (in case she pukes again) and start nursing her to ease her during landing. About 5 minutes before we land, she sits up, looks at me and starts GRUNTING... you know, the grunt I mean, the big hard monster poop grunt. I actually could feel the giant turd pushing out a tent pole in her diaper! And then the smell hit me... oh yeah, hot stinky diarea-like smelling odor.

The grumpy dude next to me, starts waving his hand in front of his face and moaning... It was awful. I was so embarrassed, and trapped.. there was nothing I could do about it, I just had to sit there, enveloped in her stink. As soon as the plane parked, I got up and headed back to the bathroom to change her diaper AGAIN!

But she didn't puke this time, (as she did on the first flight) so I guess I should be grateful. It's hard to be grateful for anything after an experience like that. I was so tired achey and sore from holding her and just plain exhausted from traveling.

It was so darn great so see Jerome, and Mielle was so glad to get a hold of him, she actually clung to his shirt when he held her. It was so sweet. We met him in baggage area and chit chatted and kissed and hugged and kissed some more. Being home with my darling husband is the best way to celebrate Valentines Day. After being apart for nearly a month it so great to snuggle up to him and know I am home.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Making friends

While on this trip I've had an awesome opportunity to meet with other like minded mamas who live far far away from me. I belong to a online community of women at Mothering .com .

It began nearly 3 years ago when I got pregnant and joined a Due Date Club where all the mamas involved were due in the same month. I found MDC to be a great source of information, support and encouragement. It was really great how we mamas bonded over the experience of pregnancy with all it's joys and sorrows.

When the time came to give birth we all waited with excitement to cheer and cry over our birth stories. Some women ended up with amazing inspirational tales to share, while others were dissapointed and heartbroken by how their births progressed. Regardless, we all had a place to come to where we could share in an honest and very real way.

The group has changed a lot over time, mamas that I knew well at one time faded from the group and new mamas joined bringing fresh perspectives and interests. Since Mielle was born I have had A LOT less time to get online, but I still always find time to reconnect with the other Mamas online.

While I have been here in Georgia I had the opportunity to meet one of these women face to face. After chatting online for over a year or more we got to meet for the first time last week. We met at a Zoo and wandered around looking at animals and admiring each other's children. After a fun but hectic lunch where the children outnumbered the adults, we went our separate ways.

It's weird meeting someone like this, who you already know, but may click with, or may... not. However, we found ourselves thinking of all the conversations left unfinished, and dubbed one another "kindred spirits".

I soon contacted her asking if she wanted to meet again before I left town,and she agreed to drive 2 full hours to come hang out with my sister and I. (What a trooper!) So today I got to spend more time with my new old friend. We snacked on yummy foods with kids running about under foot. After a group nursing session and much sharing of crackers, we put little girls to sleep for naps one by one. Once things quieted down, we talked about all sorts of things and started a craft project together.

I found myself thinking that if only she lived near me, we could totally be buddies. It's really neat to think about how this will enrich our online friendship. Getting to know her better has been a highlight of this trip for me, I hope that over time we will meet again and again and watch as our daughters grow into young women.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Tumblin' around!

While we have been here in Georgia, my sister signed Mielle up for a little tumbling class that Quin is taking. It has been so fun to go see the other little kids once a week. They do some basic somersaults and walk on a tiny little balancing beam. There are kids running every which way and Mamas chasing after...

Mielle seems a little overwhelmed by all the activity and tends to stand back observing things for awhile at first, but eventually gets into it. At times the directions involved in attending this class, seem a bit over her head, but at least she's not alone in that respect. Even if she's not doing quite what she's "supposed to" she still has a good time!

Her favorite activities seem to be catching bubbles and sliding face first down the little slide. It holds more interest for her than any of the other more intentional and acrobatic kinds of activities.

It's been fun to go out somewhere with Mary and the kids and see the little girls playing together without snatching toys from one another and howling in fury! I find it really interesting to see how much of a difference even 6 months can make in what the girls understand and are able to try. It's fun to have Ribh crawling around watching all the excitement.

Speaking of excitement...
"Miss Lynsey" the rather frenetic and overly animated instructor seems to scare Mielle a little bit, but honestly I can't blame her, I'd be freaked out by that woman too. Don't get me wrong, she's a very nice woman, but between the exagerated southern accent and the "in your face" friendliness, combined with an overdeveloped sense of authority... or something, she comes off a bit over the top. Despite this, Mielle is quite eager to be doled out her stickers at the end of the hour and seems to find marching around the room, following her lead plenty entertaining. So long as "That freaky lady" doesn't get too close, Mielle's happy as a clam.

All in all, I'm glad Mary thought to include us in this little adventure.

Thanks Sis!

Just Us Girls

Mielle and I looking at a special picture of Papa and Mama,
boy, do we miss him!

All dressed up for the superbowl party!

Squirelling around

Snuggling with my little lady

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Tromping around in Georgia

With my feet up on the dash, hanging out in a minivan waiting.....

Playing with Mary's camera and Wishing it were MINE.