Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Okay, so I'll admit that Halloween isn't my most favoritest holiday.

{The recipe for Halloween always seems to become: time+energy+$$$=a lot of candy you don't like. That just doesn't add up in my book.}

But to give myself credit, I do try to get into the spirit of the holiday, to a certain extent.

We went to a neighborhood "trunk-or-treat" last weekend, a nearby Fall Festival on Monday, and for tonight (Halloween) I made some witches' fingers and we all went trick-or-treating in our costumes that I made.

So while I may naturally be something of a hater, I do have to admit that Halloween has it upsides - the biggest of which is hearing Maddy say "Happy Halloween!" after getting her candy at each house we went to...even if there was only a chair with a bowl of candy on it outside the door.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Wits' end

DD3C2A52-15A1-4E46-AF8A-8AA32B3F8583-1399-000001314F54A05B, Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

If you were to ask me about my Maddy's strengths, one thing I would definitely say is that she is flexible. Personality-wise, anyway. She very much takes things "in stride." Getting her off a bottle at a year and a binky at 18 months? No problem. Transitioning from crib to toddler bed not much later? Smooth. She can stay awake (and happy) while we're out late at a party. She can be patient about eating. I can probably count on one hand the times she's shown stranger anxiety. She can entertain herself. She doesn't rely on a schedule (which is nice, because I'm really not a schedule person).

However, similar to those drugs that will cure your insomnia or acid reflux if you're willing to put up with a headache, nausea, chills, dizziness, fatigue, and possible death, Maddy's flexibility often comes with the side effect of inconsistency, most notably in the sleep department.

Inconsistency with when and how she falls asleep has led to inconsistency in her actual sleeping - meaning frequent up-in-the-middle-of-the-night nights with Maddy.

Some nights are worse than others. Sometimes I can console her by just sitting in her room with her for a few minutes. Other times, I have to lay down with her and I end up falling asleep there myself (and consequently waking up with a stiff neck). And in the worse cases, she ends up in Mommy and Daddy's bed. (I know. I KNOW.) And thankfully, it's not something we have to deal with every night, but it's often enough to be a problem.

Now, I've done research on this topic. I know we're supposed to have a bedtime routine (and we do). I know I'm not ever ever supposed to sit or lay on her bed to help her fall asleep (trying to abide by this has led to a lot of time spent on the floor in her room, which makes the stiff neck situation worse). I know if she gets up in the middle of the night, I'm supposed to just put her back in bed matter-of-factly, without really saying anything about it to her, and leave the room.

Now, I have nothing against letting her "cry it out" (a technique I fully support after a certain age), but well, I have something against her "crying it out" waking up her little sister, who is a super consistent sleeper but does not handle being woken up very well at all. I also have something against coherent thinking between the hours of 1 and 5 AM, which is when most of these instances occur. When she wakes me up, I'm not thinking about strategy or good parenting or what-the-heck-ever, I'm just thinking about getting back to sleep.

So basically, what I have to say is... HELP. Any advice? Tips? Tricks? Offers to let Maddy sleep at your house for the rest of her toddler years? Any and all of the above would be appreciated.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Today is the kind of day...

...when I have cabin fever, but nowhere I really need to go.

...when the mirror is telling me I weigh twice what the scale says.

...when I seriously NEED my house to be clean, but have almost no motivation to actually clean it.

...when even harmless comments put me on edge, and occasionally push me over it.

...when I do completely irrational things in the name of improving my mood, e.g. buying Arby's for lunch when there are perfectly good leftovers in the fridge.

...when I feel so restless I could go run a marathon jog around the block, but I also feel like being lazy and reading in bed all day.

...when having 101 Dalmatians on repeat is actually helping my sanity, rather than threatening it.

Guess it's just a wrong side of the bed kind of day. Just keepin' it real, y'all.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

35 Things: September Update

September was good! I'm going to miss it.

This month, I did:

9. Decorate the office/playroom. Well, it's about time! It actually ended up being more of just the playroom once Dallin admitted that he didn't really use his desk in there very much. So I had a little more room to work with, which was great, because I had big plans! Here's the end result: 

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App

I LOVE the numbered boxes. They are probably my very most favorite part. I initially had my heart set on these beauties from The Land of Nod (kind of obsessed with that store, BTW), but I ended up liking my boxes better! I followed this freezer paper stencil tutorial and put my numbers on (fairly) cheap boxes from Target. Seriously, I love them.

Other things I love about the room:


{Crayon storage. Not ideal to have to use glass baby food jars, but they were the best size. No breaks so far (knock on wood)}


{More DIY boxes, these ones from diaper boxes and Duck Tape. Very easy and awesome! One holds blocks and one holds balls}


{The reading nook. Love the rug, love the shelves, love that my girls like to sit in that chair...if only for a few minutes at a time.}

Now, the room isn't perfect. The windows let in plenty of natural light but it can be pretty dark in there at times. There also isn't a table to sit and draw at (though that might be solved this Christmas...). And of course it's a little cramped (but the girls don't complain about that). Overall, I've loved having that room. My family room hasn't complained, either.

21. Have a month-long spending freeze. Seriously, you guys, I went a whole month without buying clothes, makeup/beauty products, books, things for the house, movies, apps, etc. I also only made lunch at home (2 exceptions -- one of which was a birthday lunch). I feel really good about how I did on this goal and definitely am calling it a success!

25. Make a week's worth of freezer meals. Thanks to Pinterest, I now have 7 frozen meals in my freezer just waiting to be used. It's a good feeling. I think this is something I'd like to have at all times. They were really easy to throw together, too.

30. Read 32 books. I'm up to 25 total! This month, I read:

Bitterblue, by Kristin Cashore (book 3 of the Graceling series). A really good book with a disappointing ending. 3.5 stars.

The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho. I was expecting way more of this. It was a little odd, to be honest. 3.5 stars.

31. Be completely punctual for a month. All right, let's get real here. I don't think I can say that I was perfect at this. I know, I know. But I can only think of one time when I was a few minutes late to something I really wanted to be on time to. Honestly, I think the goal should have been to just be on time to church for a month. And hey - we did that! This one is getting checked off.

I really do feel great about what I did this month. I also made some progress on some other goals that I didn't quite finish (story of my life, right?). At this point, I'm not entirely sure that I'm going to finish everything on my list. But by golly, I'm still going to try.