7 QT Friday #20 Poop of Fame edition + Writing Insecurities + Desperate Fashion Designing

It’s Friday! Hooray! I am SO excited to… be sick. Deflating balloon sound.
7 Quick Takes here with Jen at Conversiondiary.

-1-

Tonsilitis. S’what I’ve got. I’ve never had’er before. I took a gander at my throat a few nights ago and, mmm! Charming.

-2-

As a child, getting sick would be a vacation of movies, books, and Sprite, while laying in bed for a few days, while Mom brought me soup, meds, and a cool washcloth for my head.
Now I have kids.
No pity.
This is one of the reasons why being a mom is the hardest and most sanctifying job in the world. A mom is required, even in her sickness, to serve.  As my sister cried out to the heavens one day as we were commiserating  delighting in the joys of motherhood over coffee, “Moms do not have the immense pleasure of being sick!”
But, for a cause for sainthood, I’ll wipe another rear-end (or three) while my head throbs.
Bigger picture, there, yawl.

-3-

Along with feeling like I’ve been hit by a musician’s tour bus and then run over by the caravan of groupies, we had an out-of-diaper experience, similar to Mandi’s poop excursion earlier this week. Read: THE ULTIMATE CAUSE FOR SAINTHOOD.

There I was, clumsily slicing an apple for my two apparently starving boys (who both polished off pb&js not ten minutes before), and I catch a familiar whiff of soiled diaper.

The weathered mother learns to be able to determine the catastrophic magnitude of this natural disaster simply by the varying degrees and notes of the aroma that impact the olfactory bulb. …perhaps I should be working as un nez in a parfumerie…

I knew it was bad before I even looked at the boy.
The X factor I’m leaving out?
Nothing too bad, I was only wearing a light-sleeping 9 month old across my front in a baby carrier.
As I gingerly laid Sir Poopsalot upon the carpet to face the music -boy, WHAT a symphony-, I realized too late that the poo had defied gravity (as these phenomenons always do), snuck up his back, and was now smashed into the carpet.

Combatting rising anxiety levels and proceeding to scrape the first, most dangerous layer  of poop from my toddler’s rear so that I could carry him to the bath tub, the slumbering 9 month old snapped awake, throwing his head and arms back, wailing in frustration of being suspended in such a way: his pacifier flung from his mouth and landed in the poopy coated carpet.
Don’t leave that there.

I couldn’t remove Collin from the carrier because wise mommies know: what can go wrong, most absolutely WILL go wrong.
What more tempting than a moist patch of poopy coated carpet to play about? Ooooh! A new texture!

So Collin continued to squirm as I labored to scrub my Poo-year-old.
Rattling tonsillitis breath, sweat dropping from my brow, I single-handedly seized my now clean toddler from the tub, patted him dry, and released him so that I might tackle cleaning the dirty carpet, baby still wailing in the carrier.
As I’m filling a bowl with hot water, I look up in just enough time to catch a streak of Emmett fully inaugurating himself into the Poo of Fame as he picks up the poopy pacifier and pops it into his mouth.
“NOOOOOOOOOOO!”
Collin renewed his wailing-in-my-face efforts.

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Does that story top last week’s discovery of Collin proudly standing at the toilet (in which my oldest had just relieved himself), happily sucking on some pee-soaked toilet paper?
“NOOOOOOOOOOO!”
I don’t know, I’ll let you decide.

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What in the world were you DOING, Carolyn, while your baby was feeding himself from the toilet bowl?
Heck, I don’t know. Maybe trying to not let the house sink further into a state of derelict,

A microcosm is all I have the courage to give you.

A microcosm is all I have the courage to give you.

maybe feed the other two human food inhalers, or bark at them to GET OFF THE TABLE, or maybe just simply feed myself…

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OR, maybe I was hacking away on my oldest pair of jeans in desperate attempts to acquire a pair of long-enough shorts. I don’t like the feeling of my legs -which are as likely to be freshly shaved as the laundry in my house is to be folded- chafing together throughout the day.
I saw Princess Sister-in-law last weekend and she let me try on her designer light-wash, slightly torn (I guess that’s coming back?), long boyfriend shorts and I WANTED THEM NOW.
But I’m a nappy-haired momma whose children roll in the deep, while I hack away at high school grade jeans. Jealous of Princess Sis-in-law, much? Nah.  … .. .

knees. ew. Definitely cut off my sick upper-half for this photo.

 Definitely cut off my sickly, nappy-haired upper-half for this photo.

They turned out well, no? –really, someone tell me, “CAROLYN. STOP.” if necessary. I’m blind (as you’ll see in Take 7).
For the record: the poopy/pee incidents occurred separately from my fashion designing attempt. DO note, however, the unfolded laundry in the back. That’s as close to my legs as you’re getting, so don’t ask.

-7-

Fine Linen and Purple featured a blog post written by moi. My vey first guest post!

I literally felt like a 13 year old. After I submitted it, I kept having thoughts like:
“Why did you just contribute to a fashion-y blog?!
You are not a fashion-anything.
My writing style is too spastic for a blog like this.
I’m too abrasive.
It’s not going to get posted.
Your writing style confuses people.
Maybe no one gets Frenchy humor.
Maybe no one likes having to work out how to read dialect.
Your writing style is elementary.
Why are you even writing right now?
And then I had a 6th grade flashback: My very first school dance. As the oldest sibling in the house and one of the oldest cousins in the family, I’d had no prior instruction on how to dance. No cool, older sister or cousin who I could mimic.

God, bless us. That's my cousin, Steph, with the rapunzle hair. Doesn't she look adorable, and completely prophetic to 2013!?

God, bless us. That’s my cousin, Steph, with the rapunzle hair. Doesn’t she look adorable, and completely hip to 2013!?

So insert me, in my Kohl’s overalls, carefully chosen shiny black shirt underneath and brown clogs: a 6th grader, dancing in a way that I thought was acceptable to everyone else, bewildered by the macarena, hoping to get asked by my crush to SLOW dance along to a Backstreet Boys ballad and—- “CAROLYN. stop. STOP. IT.”
My best friend had grabbed my hands (which were doing something similar to Seinfield’s Elaine dance), and she was staring me in the face most seriously.

Snapback!
CAROLYN. STOP IT. STOP blogging.

Then it got posted. At 9pm.
And the next morning, a new, different post was up already.

WHY I NO BE FAMOUS FASHIONISTA FOR MY VERY FIRST, POINT 2 SECOND-LIVED VERY WITTY AND HILARIOUS GUEST POST!?

Whatever.
There you have it. My writing insecurities, la.  Though, in all seriousness, it was fun to do!  If you’re interested in something that’s a little bristly compared to the other very moving and inspirational contributions, go take a gander. Do pause to read Katie’s entry about accepting the mom body after giving birth. I struggled with my body image from start to… Ehh. Well. I need to work out, some day. Her words are compassionate and so loving. Go. Get thee yonder!

Have a beautiful summer weekend, everyone!  Come back and see me in a few days for a quick tuto on DIY coffee face scrub. READ: Flattering photos of me with a beard. Yes.

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7 QT #19 in Which I Actually Stick to Being Quick.

 

Okay. Seven things. Here I am, and here’s Jen & co.  Go see what they have to say– and have a great weekend!

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Lexington turned 4 this week. It’s really freaky, and I don’t wanna talk about the ludicrously rapid span of time which sneaks by when you’re caught up in the moment of the “rough days” and they feel like it’s not budging. But I will talk about how I delight in the ridiculous things Lexington says as a little language learner.  A few nights ago, we discussed the properties of pea juice while eating peas with lasagna. That’s one subject I’ve never discussed in my life. Just check it off the bucket list, then.

-2-

Sometimes I have a looped nightmare (identical to a Vine) of either my 2 year old or my 9 month old eternally twisting after I’ve changed a diaper, while I’m trying to force each leg back into pant legs which have impossibly knotted themselves while still around each ankle.  If a secret spy agency ever needed to torture me for information, just sit me in front of two rubber poles continually twisting and wriggling, and make me put pants on them.
“okay–OKAY! IT’S HALF OF A PACKAGE OF INSTANT VANILLA PUDDING –OH PLEASE, GOD, STOP- LET IT STOP!!!!”

-3-

About 2 years ago, I found excellent foam pillows at Bed Bath & Beyond.  But after a year of waking up each morning with my head not on my pillow, I am now wondering if the pillow is too good for me.
As in: “Remove thy head from mine royal grounds or I shall expel thee on mine own accord, ye head of coffee grounds.”
As in: my head chronically rolls off the pillow.
So either I have a bowling ball head, or my pillow thinks itself above me. The knave.

-4-

Spring and summer means the annoying presence of motorcyclists. I can’t see you.  Don’t you get how dangerous you are being, you lover of the wind in your hair, you!? You, lover of the wind-in-your-hair, cycle sans helmet?!
But WORST OF ALL, is the casual, cool, obnoxiously secret little hand signal motorcyclists display when they pass each other on the road.
Do they offer me, mom in an SUV full of kids, this cool, peace sign as I pass by???
No. No they don’t.
I am offended by their elitist parading of all the wind in all their hairs.
SO. Moms in minivans and SUVs… lets parade our kid’s snot in our hairs by our own cool …umm… yeah…

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Maybe motorcyclists are too cool for mommas, but… A few weeks ago I was at the mall with my little fam and mom-in-law looking for Crocs for our boys (Dont even get me started. They’re easy to put on, wash, and dry. ‘swhy we do em.).  I, the fast walker, had marched ahead of my husband and MIL who were strolling our oldest two. I was wearing Collin in the ergo. The Ergobaby, while wonderfully comfortable, is not something one wants to wear to look pretty, but I don’t care anymore.
So, I’m marching along, baby strapped to my front, my mouth hanging partially open as I gaze at the mall’s upper level from below, when my eye catches a sudden jerking movement about 10 yards in front of me. Two dudes, one who looked dead on Will.I.Am (hair cut, glasses, you name it), busted out a Michael Jackson dance move into the clearing in front of me, lunged at me (remember: mouth gaping, baby strapped to my front), and short of having a dance seizure, blurted out, “you GOR-geous!” And they continued about their business, whatever it might’ve been …dancing at tired looking moms, sure.
I, the one who all too easily shows the cold, frigid shoulder complete with an icy distant stare toward ridiculous public outbursts, stopped in my tracks suddenly aware of my mouth-breather expression, and smiled and laughed.  Sometimes I forget I’m a female in her 20’s.

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One of my Cathsorority sisters shared this blog post with us on Thursday and I think it (AND part I) should be going viral, if it hasn’t already (it was written in March).

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Father’s day. It’s Sunday. If you haven’t gotten a gift for the Dads in your life yet, don’t worry, I found the best gift EVER for ol’ Daddio. But hurry, it looks like they’re going quick!

There’s only 13 left in stock on Amazon. Better hurry!

or this:

only 11 in stock on Amazon. Quick!

…or my personal favorite:

GAHH! ONLY 1 LEFT IN STOCK ON AMAZON! SCRAMBLE!

*mwah!* “Have a good day at work, honey!”

7QT (#5)(correction!)

Bienvenue to 7 Quick Takes hosted by Jennifer Fulwiler at ConversionDiary!

After you’ve finished reading my QT’s, if you’re a mom, or even someone who values personal space, Go check out Jen’s #6 for the week.  Ahhh I’d love it.  I never have my free space.  NEVER. -wait a minute. I do. When I’m brushing my teeth.  Most nights.  Though brushing with baby in one arm is a frequent occurrence as well.  So I’ll rescind to NEVER. There’s a sleeping baby in my lap right now. 

Last week consisted of much frustration, a sick baby, breastfeeding problems (TMI warning) but finished off with a beautiful celebration: the dedication of my parish’s newly built church and alter. (possessive of parish= parish’s?) 


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1. This is nap time at Bumpy Bridge (the name our oldest boy gave our house) on Tuesday:

  • Emmett laughing maniacally in his crib while bouncing up and down on his bottom, simultaneously flipping through the cardboard pages of a picture book.
  • Lexington prancing on his tippie toes, doing laps around the mattress, bellowing “I HAVE TO DO A PEEPEEEEEE!” as if he needed permission to go to the bathroom. (I’ve had marked discussions with him before, about how if he has to go, to get up and use the toilet. And that he doesn’t have to ask because using the toilet is better than peeing where we sleep.)
  • Laying with Collin, trying to nurse him to sleep so I could sneak out and start some fraction of the mountainous laundry which has magically cultivated by itself. 

    (EVE, Y U EAT OF FORBIDDEN FRUIT, NOTICE NAKEDNESS, AND MAKE LAUNDRY FOR ALL GENERATIONS!?) Collin drifted off for 10 minutes, but then woke up suddenly and began ululating like the little dinosaur which attacks Newman on Jurassic Park (his newfound voice, of which he’s proud) and pedaling his feet in the air so rapidly, the blankets stood no chance of me attempting to tuck him back into a cuddle bug. 

Another cup of coffee it is, then.

2. I attempted to wear Collin on my back with the Moby Wrap.
I failed.
This happened a few weeks ago, and I’d forgotten about it until I found a photo of it on my iPhone early last week.
Visualize:
Me, watching a baby-wearing video on how to wrap your baby on your back, thinking, “easy enough!”.

I get to the point of successfully hoisting Collin onto my back, the wrap properly placed with the middle of it across his back, the rest of it hanging on either side of me onto the floor.
At this juncture, I was hunkered over, saying, “Okay… now what?” whilst the first warning burp was fired: a lovely, wet, gurgle, which boiled, not quite to the opening of the baby’s mouth, threatening the back of my neck.
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                              [Laughing here, but not for long.]

Three curdle-y burps warning my ear canal later, I was still hunkered over, stuck at step one, baby drool drenching the fly aways at the nape of my neck, entangled in a tiny fist, and sweat rolling down my forehead.
I decided baby back wearing is for the double-jointed. For the life of me, I could not work the miles of fabric around my back, laden with baby because my arms would not bend BACKWARD.

3) Collin now has double ear infection. Anyone who knows anything about ear pain can tell you that swallowing is no bueno, let alone drinking through a straw, or in an infant’s case, bottle feeding or breastfeeding.  So, Wednesday night, I started getting the rejection.  Ahh.  It immediately was brought to the emotional state I experienced 3.5 years ago, when my oldest boy went on a “nursing strike”. :

 I was a new mom, a new breastfeeder, and had been so caught up with being pregnant and thinking about the presence of my baby, that I didn’t even know to read about breastfeeding and its challenges.  ”Challenges” is an understatement. Long story short, He had only been breastfeeding for 3 months when we switched to the bottle.  I felt like a failure, I felt a real sense of loss.  I felt angry frustration and confusion.  I felt like I’d lost a bond with my child. I was depressed and I cried, alone when no one was around, for two weeks when I realized I was finished breastfeeding.  Since then, I’ve become borderline psycho about no bottles.

 Fast forward past successfully breastfed baby #2 and here we are with #3 who’s ears hurt when he eats.  I started noticing reluctance to nurse on Thursday and by Friday, it was full throttle crying. All day. I was so stressed out that I now have clogged milk ducts in multiple places on both sides.  The pain of this is akin to an aching, cavity in your molars. 

5) I saw the light though.  After going through the stresses of baby 1, and the weathering yet peaceful nursing period of my second baby, I realized that fixing this is not going to take a tap of a finger and instant gratification.  This is going to take time and patience.  

Friday and most of Saturday, I walked around holding baby Collin upright, so his ears wouldn’t hurt from the pressure while laying back (i.e. BREAKING MY BACK AND NECK) and walked, rocked, and bounced on our orange medicine ball until he chose to nurse, for as long as he would do it. It involved a lot of crying from Collin, headaches for me, and no moments to myself.   I had to pump -something I really don’t like doing- a few times.  I applied heat to my clogged areas (sock filled with rice, microwaved 20 sec). I nearly cried, many times. But today, Sunday, he began to nurse like regular.  It was such a huge relief.  I probably couldn’t have had the patience to do this were it not for the help of my mom, who watched the older boys one afternoon, and of my husband, who took off Friday to help with the boys and basically clean up after the disaster zone I’d made of the house.

It’s taken three children to realize that, with human beings, there are no short cuts.  There are no schedules or equations.  Each person is completely different.  It’s time.   As a Mom, I owe ALL of my time.  ALL of my personal space.  DARN PEEING ALONE!  I can when I’m dead! -and the relief is far more gratifying than the shortcut, which hardly helps in the long term anyway.    
 

6) Since before I was in high school, our Parish has prayed to be able to build a new church.  10+ years later (that’s a minimal guess), on the Saturday Vigil, I got to witness and, even better, participate in the dedication of our new church and alter.

 My parents have contributed much to the preparation and building of this church, and were part of the celebration on Saturday. It was fun to listen to them talk about all of the intricacies involved in the preparation and building of this church, especially about the rehearsal:

My mom told us that aside from a man claiming to want to enter the new church before the dedication in order to pray, instead began shouting, holding up one of the Missalettes (which my mom believed he mistook for the Bible), yelling “IN SHA ALLAH!  ALLAH IS THE TRUE GOD!”, and other alarming ramblings which implied he did not like this particular church, and that he was indeed not praying, the dedication went off without a hitch.

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7) We could not have made it to the dedication Mass without my mother-in-law and Sis-in-law.   They visited early in the day to help dress and feed the boys while I was learning the ways of the Breastfeeding-whisperer.  They kept the boys entertained so that I could shower and dry my hair, uninterrupted (an extravagant luxury for me nowadays). 
For them I am so very thankful.  We made it, notwithstanding Lexington grass-staining the knees of his crisp, clean khakis on our way in, and notwithstanding him also peeing all over one of the brand new toilets and the subsequent wall behind it, the celebration was beautiful.  I love the smells of the chrism oil and incense. mmm!

Credits this week go to my Mom for taking the boys, Mom in law for helping us get ready, Sis for her thoughtful gift, and my loving, steady husband.

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          [My Mom, Dad, & Baby Collin]

Stomach Bug Blues

I’ve gotta get it out. 

My oldest boy has the poops.
I don’t have the poops, that’s not what I gotta get out.

I know I’m not the only one, I know this isn’t the last time this’ll happen, I know this isn’t even the worst thing I’ll have to deal with and I know this is a blessing compared to illness that other people’s kids have. 

My boy’s stomach bug has brought me to a new level of —for lack of a more eloquent description of insanity— “patient mommy-ness” this week:

I wake up: Lexington poop. clean it. change his clothes, cause it’s everywhere. apply A&D ointment. wash hands. 
I brush my teeth, wash my face:  another Lexington poop. clean it. apply A&D Ointment. Wash hands.
I groggily and anxiously brew my coffee: more poop. clean it. apply A&D. Wash hands.
Emmett awakes, with his own poop:  clean it. wash hands.
I feed Emmett.
I feed Lexington from his now limited menu option, about which he is vocally not happy.
I eye my coffee pot with longing.
Poop:
Clean it. wash hands.
SUCK DOWN COFFEE LIKE MY LIFE DEPENDS UPON IT!
Emmett hungry again:
feed him, while detecting odor of dirty diaper from Lexington.
Urge Lexington to drink liquids: He wants milk, cannot have it, throws fit.

NAP TIME!!!!!!!!!

“okay, Carolyn… you have one hour to do things that need to be done!”
I drink more coffee and take a breather instead. 
FINISH-OFF COFFEE POT.
 

Lexington wakes up exactly 1 hour later.  With a poop.
Give Lexington bath:
because at this point, his diaper rash is so bad that he screams every time a gentle breeze touches his raw skin.
Emmett awakes: Feed him bottle while Lexington bathes.
Dry Lexington.
Feed Lexington Rice.
Feed Emmett.
I EAT CHEESE STICK.
Oh, more poop. joy:
clean it, amidst diaper rash screams. Apply A&D Ointment along with Bordreaux’s Rash Protector. wash hands.

Now it’s time to think of dinner: Oh wait- I haven’t.  

Late afternoon continues on with a minimum of 2 more poops and clean-ups and clothes changes. 
REPEAT EACH DAY ALL WEEK LONG.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Today is Thursday and my hands literally have cracks in them from the constant washing and soap.  Every time I apply lotion, I have to wash them again,
I was brought to my hair-pulling point last night when my husband had a business-venture buddy come over to talk business-y stuff in the basement while I burnt the frozen pizza upstairs amidst trying to clean up a diaper catastrophe. 

I kept seeing what looked like white cotton balls laying on the floor.  I kept picking them up and throwing them away asking Lexington where he got them. But he’d been standing in the kitchen with me the whole time so I was flummoxed as to how they were appearing out of thin air.  
I picked another, larger cotton-y looking thing, took a closer look and saw the little absorbent balls that I recognized are contained within the structure of a diaper.
My eyes scavenging the rest of the kitchen, discovered the floor to be littered with the insides of Lexington’s dirty diaper, on which Emmett was crawling.

I was simply delighted!! 

[SARCASM].

I placed Emmett in his crib, threw Lexington in the bathtub, and vacuumed furiously. I mopped with wrath. 
An eternity of a half-hour later, the babies were both playing in the living room, clean and content while I was on the brink of pulling my hair out of my head.

Craig’s business buddy came a half-hour early (just as rude as coming late) and didn’t leave until 9pm.  I wouldn’t normally feel as angry as I then did about the lengthy meeting but I wanted some fresh air.

As soon as Craig emerged, I grabbed the car keys and left. To Target I went.
This, to me, is hilarious.  I’ve discovered that Target is the escape for all other moms as well.

Proof of it was delivered to me on a obnoxious platter of two raucous sounding women with clunky heels who seemed to be following me through the store the hour I was there.  It honestly didn’t bother me so much, except for the loud harsh laughing.
But my heart melted in the cookie aisle as I heard them the next aisle over talking:

“I’m sorry if I’m annoying you with my non-stop chatter, Sarah… Can you tell I don’t get out much?”
“Trust me, I don’t care at all… you get out of the house without your kids even less than I do, and that’s not much!”

I wanted to stick my head over and say, ‘hey it sounds like I should be with you girls!’ but my recent experience of conversing AT strangers made me think twice and just sigh in sympathy.
They ARE out there, other moms like me. —Actually they’re not OUT there, they’re IN their homes with their children.  

As they SHOULD BE.

It’s a good thing a mom does. Sacrifice her time and comfort.
But it’s also a great thing for a mom to go to Target and buy some cookies.

Now, onto round two of child number two.  Yep, Emmett’s got the poops as of today. HOORAY! :)

PS» Bordreaux’s RASH PROTECTOR is the culprit in the diaper malfunction.  It disintegrates the lining of the diaper and thus, the innards and all bodily waste fall upon the floor.  NOW I KNOW.  Hopefully you do too!