Sunday, January 30, 2011

Theory On Friendship

We recently have been talking about nursing theories and theorists in class.  It's interesting.  Some good points are made by various people about what nursing is and should be. 

There should probably be theories about most things we get involved in, whether work or play.  I've been thinking about friendship a lot lately.  As a kid I'd say I had a lot of friends.  This extended through my time at college.  Even the two and a half years following college I made and kept friends fairly well.  However, in the last 3 years or so I've seen a distinct shift.  I neither keep nor make new friends like I used to.  I've asked myself what has changed about me?  A lot, surely, but in terms of trying to make friends, not much.  Same goes with trying to keep them.  I am pretty loyal and dependable (though I admit I often am running a few - 15 minutes behind, always, since Kaia arrived).  I am at least decent about calling, texting, emailing, or some other form of social media messaging friends, and yet . . . I am, largely unsuccessful.  I have lost many friends.

So, what is it?  I've asked my husband and my best friend (who thank God I have not lost) what gives?  Is it something I am doing unwittingly?  Am I coming across in a way I do not think I am?  I haven't figured it out and it's both perplexing and painful.

One theory of friendship I just looked up states that friendship is dependent on: similarity, proximity, reciprocity, beauty, and competence (though not too much so).  Well, according to this proximity is probably my biggest problem in losing friends, I'm no longer near them so no longer a priority and, I fear, some of those "friends" probably didn't have that much in common with me but liked me more because I was there to begin with.  OK, so making them?  What's my problem?  I'm competent but definitely not too competent.  I'm not too pretty but I'm not ugly so I think that's good enough.  I treat people well.  I smile and strike up conversation, heck I bring cookies!  I'm here.  They're here.  So is it I'm just not similar enough?  Perhaps but I dont feel like this is my answer either.

I promise Im not having a pity party.  It's more of a think tank right now and you're here with me.  I know that you've only met me through bloggy land (well, most of you), what do you think?  Ideas?  I promise my feelings wont get hurt if you're honest!

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sick

I'm sick.  Blah!  Thank goodness Kaia's being such a little sweetie and not too demanding right now.  Oh, and I don't have to go to school today, yay!

So far, school's going well.  I've completed two paper tests and one hands on one.  The hands on one was giving a bed bath.  Sandra, I'm sure you can appreciate that one, huh?  I really am enjoying my classes and learning something new again.  It's still overwhelming though, the sheer volume of reading to be done.  Perhaps one of the best things about going to school is it forces me to get dressed every morning in something other than sweatpants.   Plus the time until Todd comes home goes faster when I'm busy.

Want to know the worst class I'm in?  Old Testament.  Don't get me wrong, I'm as spiritual as the next girl, and, initially I was actually somewhat excited about this class for what it could teach me that, as a Christian, I should probably know better.  But, the teacher and the environment is everything.  And this class really just isn't working out for me.  But, alas, 'tis a requirement so I must soldier on.  What's the worst class you've ever taken?  Pray, do tell.  It will make me feel better.

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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Judgement

Being a mother is hard work.  There is no question about that.  Generally, I feel that because mothering is so hard we should all help each other out when we can and not judge one another.  I support you whether you breastfeed or bottlefeed, whether you work or stay home.  I do not judge you for little mistakes or slip ups.  You can co-sleep or crib sleep.  You can home school, private school, public school.  I don't care if you buy your kids clothes from Walmart or Macy's.  But, there are some things I will judge you for.  (And I don't think anyone who reads this blogs does any of these things, I'm just saying I do judge some Moms)

1.   If you physically, sexually, verbally, or emotionally abuse your children
2.   If you neglect them
3.   If you put yourself before your kids all.the.time
4.   If you don't get them vaccinated or give them medical care when they need it (or should get it)
5.   If you don't send them to school at all
6.   If your house is so dirty it is causing a health/safety hazard for your children
7.   If you don't teach them right from wrong - even worse if you teach them all messed up
8.   If you teach them to be mean and hateful
9.   If you encourage them to be obese
10. If you excessively spoil them and they act like it
11. If you intentionally get pregnant over.and.over and you can't afford to
12. If you don't get prenatal care
13. If you are an alcoholic
14. If you use drugs
15. If you never play with them
16. If you drive like a maniac or text while driving while they are in the car
17. If you have never.ever bought (or made) them a birthday or Christmas present
18. If you let someone else physically, mentally, emotionally, or sexually abuse your child
19. If your bedroom is a revolving door and your kids witness this
20. If you're not trying to be the best Mother you can be

What do you judge other Mothers for?  Anything I left off the list?

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Amazing!

You are amazing!

Thank you all, again, sincerely, for your encouragement and support.  You all, and this blog, have truly been a blessing to me.

I took my first test today.  I am sure I got some wrong, but over all, I feel I did well.  Fingers crossed.  I am enjoying this new endeavour and knowledge - minus being away from my angel, but she is adjusting so well to the Nanny it makes it easier for me.

Thank you who responded with your honest feedback on your feelings of pacifism.  So as to not leave you with a few thoughts of my own (though not all are entirely formed out yet)

1.  I support freedom of religion and thought
2.  I am not a pacifist
3.  I do support and desire peace, foremost
4.  I believe there are genuinely evil people who want to do harm, to kill, and destroy
5.  I believe some of these people do these things in the name of their god (notice I did not say my God)
6.  I believe we, as humans, have a responsibility to protect and defend when we can
7.  I have hope that someday all men (and women, obviously) will live in harmony
(Also, as a side note, I also believe women are very rarely the problem when it comes to war and violence)
8.  I believe all Americans have a responsibility to our country and the freedoms we are afforded in it (I do not mean everyone, necessarily, must join the service to demonstrate this)
9.  I believe that God is not against war in all circumstances
10.  I would most certainly die, happily, defending the ones I love (such as my beautiful daughter) and many honorable, brave, and admirable men and women have done just that.  And, in many ways, isn't that very Christian?  Or like Christ?  Sacrificing one's life for another?  Or others?

So there are a few of my thoughts.  I do have others and I am sure I will gain more as time goes on.  But for now, I wish you all a very beautiful and blessed week!

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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Catching Up

Hi All!

Sorry I've been out of the loop for a few days.  I think I've caught up on all of your lovely blogs now (even if I didn't leave comments on all your posts)!  You all have been some busy ladies and I enjoyed reading everything, from accounts of your moves, to your school, work, weight loss, shopping, and big projects!

I survived my first week back to school and Kaia survived her first week separated from Mommy for an extended period of time.  This semester is going to be HARD!  Between the coursework, being away from Kaia, and not having hubby here to watch the little angel while I study, but I think with a little hard work, organization, prioritization, and a lot of prayers, I'll make it through.  I'm sure this blog will suffer a bit so I apologize for that.  I will likely only post a couple of times a week and I might end up trying to catch up on your lives on weekends and at random times throughout the week.  Can you believe I already have my first test this coming week?!  I think I'm going to take it on Monday.

Today's been a busy day.  Little Miss wanted to wake up at 630 but she did go back to sleep eventually for a few more minutes.  Then it was up, getting ready for the day, cleaning, making another batch of cupcakes, catching up on blogging, chatting with the hubs, reading videos, signing videos, and finally, a bit of homework.  I really need to hit the books much harder tomorrow to study and get ahead for next week.  It's so hard to get homework done when I get home during the week and Kaia needs things from me, whether food or just some dedicated attention to just her.

Well, we need to watch our Your Baby Can Read video one more time tonight before we hit the hay.  Sweet dreams everyone!

p.s.  How do you feel about pacifism?  For or against?  This is a post and question I've been thinking about for the past couple of days now.

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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Back to School

Monday, January 10th, Day 1.  I arrived late to my first class.  I also, apparently, missed another class completely that was, initially, left off of my schedule.  Whoops!

There are not many nursing students in my level.  This is good in many ways.  It is bad in others.  There are three students that are older than me.  They are, probably, in their 40s (I didn't ask) but just judging by the ages of their kids, they have to be at least late 30s.  The others are all, pretty much straight out of HS and so are roughly between 19-20 yrs old.  That puts me right in the middle.  Neither early 20s or late 30s-40s.  Everyone else also seemed to know at least two other students in the class that they'd palled up with if you will.  Again, awesomeness.  I think it will all be OK though.  Even if I don't make super duper best friends forever, I'm really there to learn anyway so that's cool.  I'm excited about getting started, though I must say, I'm not sure if I knew what I was getting into.  The schedule is VERY confusing and the hours are a bit more in depth than I was prepared for.  I just hope Kaia and I both make it through this first semester two happy girls.  I know I'm even more ready for the summer with my little angel all to myself again!

Day 2: pretty much uneventful, minus the having to get up too early, boo!

We shall see how the remaining days of the week go.

P.S. Kaia is a superstar at going to sleep at night now!  Knock on wood.

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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Tagged

Kristen at eatdrinkloveandexercisedotcom tagged me for a survey so I thought it might be a fun and easy blog post for a busy Sunday.  I've been cleaning and baking all day!  And getting ready for class, or at least I hope I'm ready - I still want to puke whenever I think about it, and yes, I realize it totally is not that serious, but I can't help it!.

Here goes:

*Four TV shows I watch:
1. Biggest Loser
2. Extreme Home Makeover
3. The Office
4. And a lot of crap "reality" TV, like The Bachelor

*Four Things I'm Passionate About
1. Todd aka The Hubs
2. Kaia aka My Mini Me
3. Helping People
4.  Do I have to pick 4?  My friends, running, eating/baking, the U S of A

*Four Words or Phrases I use too Much
1. Dammit Jers! (Jers is my Todd's "special" dog)
2. Nom, nom nom and Ahhh (encouraging Kaia to eat)
3. I was reading this one blog and [insert fascinating story here]
4. I love you!  (But you can NEVER say this too much in my opinion!)

*Four Things I Learned in the Past
1. Some of God's greatest gifts really ARE unanswered prayers
2. True love Does exist
3. Education is everything
4. Helping someone else is always worth it

*Four Things I'm Looking Forward To
1. Todd coming home!
2. Kaia continuing to grow and develop into her beautiful little self
3. Becoming a nurse
4. The summer

*Four Things I Like About Winter
1. Cute coats
2. Cute boots
3. How pretty and clean the snow makes everything look
4. Snow days!

I'm supposed to pass this on to four ladies but I don't want anyone to feel obligated and I want anyone who wants to to join in the fun.  So please, if it strikes your fancy, join in, I'd love to learn more about you too!

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Saturday, January 8, 2011

Sleep Training, Part Trois

Sleep training has actually been going pretty well the past couple of nights.  My angel always proves to be just that.  That girl is good to her Mommy.  I, on the other hand, am a fail at sleep training.  I cannot fall asleep!  Ahhhh!  I lay there with her for hours and don't fall asleep.  And I need to in the worst way.  I start school on Monday and that means early mornings people!  Very early.  I cannot be up until midnight!  I am not as young and crazy as I used to be.  Wait, I was never young and crazy . . . I've always loved my sleep.

And, speaking of school, I am so nervous!  I know everything will be fine.  But I am worried that I will forget something I am supposed to bring.  Or I won't find my classes and walk in all late whenever everyone else is already seated and the instructors already talking.  Or what if I realize after I've gotten all the way there that I have baby spit up all over my shoulder?  Or what if I forget to do something I was told to do?  Or if everyone's already friends (you know most of my class will have been in classes together for 2 years already) and in cliques and I'm the odd, old lady out?  And what if I'm late, well, because I'm often late to things and it's a long drive, and I'm not used to being away from the baby.  And what if I miss her terribly?  And, I know that I've talked about my nerves and worries about this already and you've all been so nice and generous and kind with your comments.  And they have helped.  And I hope that you are all right!  But now that it is approaching with no turning back my fears, nerves, and worries are just amplified regardless.  New is scary.  At least new is scary to me.  I am sure I will be keeping you all posted.

But for now, for now I really must try to sleep.

Good night, sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bite!

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Friday, January 7, 2011

Help for Breast Cancer Patients

Hi everyone!  This is a very important topic.  Please stay, read, pass on the word, and donate if you can.  Thank you!

Early on in my blogging I found Minky Moo she's a great blogger and I always enjoy reading her posts.  Yesterday, was one of the best, most heartfelt posts yet, same title as mine today, Help For Breast Cancer Patients.  It was all about her amazing friend, Susan, a cancer survivor, astrophysicist, and Mom of two . . . I know, Wow! right?  And Minky describes her as being made of Alpha waves and awesome.  Pretty much just the kind of person you want to be around. all. the. time. because you are made more awesome just by being lucky enough to be in her presence.  This is how I imagine her anyway :)

Well, Susan has these pretty amazing sleeves,   that she gets to wear for the rest of her life.  You see, what I didn't know, is that a side effect of breast cancer treatment can be permanent swelling in the arms, lymphedema.  It has been found that compression sleeves are, often, the best treatment.  But, unfortunately, they're not covered by medicare, or most insurance plans and they range from $200-$500.  Heartbreaking.  Well, Susan, being the amazing woman she is, decided to do something about it!  She made some phone calls and she made some big things happen!  Here are some of her own words explaining it:

Both the foundation (Crickett’s Aswser for Cancer) and my favorite lymphedema sleeve maker (Lymphedivas) were founded in honor of thirty-something women (one a blogger!) who had breast cancer (and then died).  I made an earnest plea to each of them, told them about the women that each other were honoring, and then held my breath and made the ask.

Would you, could you, please consider working with each other to provide lymphedema sleeves to women in need?

They agreed to talk to each other.  They liked each other, and a few weeks later, box upon box of lymphedema sleeves and gauntlets (like a glove without fingers – you can see mine in Monday’s post) arrived at the foundation.  Sue’s friend Carole, the foundation’s VP, unpacked them, totaled it up, and found that she had received over $12,000 worth of lymphedema sleeves and gloves to give away.

Pretty amazing, no?!  So, you may be asking, why does this matter to me?

Well, first, you are a woman too (probably because I don't think any men currently read my fancy blog) and you have or will, likely, be touched by breast cancer at some point in your life, whether you yourself, a family member, or friend.

If you are currently a breast cancer survivor in need, you can now go to Crickett's Answer for Cancer, and complete the forms requesting help by writing in “lymphedema sleeve and gauntlet” on page 2 of the application.

Or, if you want to help someone else, you can pass this message on.  Either directly to a friend/family member in need, blog about it, email it out, or make a donation here.

And if you want to tell Susan how awesome and fabulous she is, go vist her at Toddler Planet.

Now get to work!  Love ya ladies!

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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Day 2 Sleep Training - Fail

Last night sucked!

Kaia fell asleep a little after 8.  The smart me knew I should probably wake her up.  The idiot me said let's roll with it.  So, roll with it we did.

Kaia was back up again by 10.

And up, and up, and up.

There was singing.  There was staring at the illuminated mobile.  There was more singing.  There was cuddling.  And some more singing.  But there was definitely no sleeping again until well after midnight.  And then she woke up for good just after 7.  Awesome!

Idiot me may make a reappearance, or many, I don't doubt that.  But, she will not make that mistake again!

Here's to hoping we all get some good sleep tonight!

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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Day 1 Sleep Training Day 2 Sweet Potatoes

Last night was the first night of Kaia and I's attempt at sleep training.  So far, I don't have the heart for the cry it out method.  So, we tried our own version of the no tears sleep training.  I laid Kaia down at 1025 (25 minutes later than I meant to, darn dogs!) with our usual night time soothing sounds playing.  I also added her projection mobile on the ceiling for her to gaze at.  Then I laid down next to her ('cause we co-sleep) and closed my eyes (you know, show her what we were supposed to be doing and all).  She entertained herself quite well for 15-20 minutes just cooing and talking to the pictures on the ceiling and sucking on her fingers.  She then decided she didn't like this idea and started crying and fussing.  I let her do this for about a minute, maybe two, at which point I got her attention to show her Mommy was still there and sang to her while letting her hold my finger if she wanted to; she liked this and stopped crying.  I could tell she was definitely getting sleepy because of the yawning and heavy, droopy lids but then she decided she was too hungry to go to bed.  So, I nursed her while we both stayed laying in bed and she fell asleep about 1115-1130.  When I put her back in her little "bed" 20 minutes later or so, she opened her eyes and went right back to sleep.  Not perfect, but I think it was a decent attempt for the first night.  I figure consistency's going to be the key here.  I hope it works.  Then, if you're into the (semi-)attachment parenting thing, like me, maybe my method will work for you someday too :)  Here's to hoping ladies!

Also, Kaia had her 6 month appointment yesterday.  She's 26 1/4 inches long, head circumference at 16 3/4, and weight 14.4.  She's a tiny little thing.  Her head and height are in the 50th percentile, yay!  But her weight . . . not so much.  Munchkin's a little small, only 25th percentile :(  So, Mommy's going to try and up her solid food intake and see if that helps with a reweigh-in in a few weeks.  Good news is, Mommy and Daddy aren't big people, and Kaia's happy, peeing, and pooping so at least there's that!  All that in mind, we started jarred baby food yesterday.  Exciting!  We started with sweet potatoes.  Kaia's decided she's not a big fan but she's made a good effort.  She ate all of them yesterday and most of them today.  But the faces, precious city folks!

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Monday, January 3, 2011

Sleep Training

So, I start school next Monday.  I know, gah!  Old lady on campus people!

That means I finally have to bite the bullet and sleep train my angel, or at least try to.  Otherwise I'm going to die on the road (worst case) or fail all my classes for sleeping in class(best case).  I know, I know, I probably waited a little long to get started, but to be honest, I'm a pushover already and I sorta enjoyed the late nights with my baby.  Plus, I was skyping with Todd late at night too so getting Kaia to bed late was good for Mommy sometimes too (selfish Mommy!).

Also, I know that my blog's kinda been on the sucky side the last couple of weeks.  Minus maybe my Stepmonster post they've been lacking a bit in content and quality.  I am going to work on getting better again, even if that means posting less frequently to not waste your time with poor quality writing or fluff.

I'm pretty sure that with starting school again, Kaia being at home with the Nanny, and homeworker I'll probably have a lot of material coming.  That being said, please also excuse me if, starting next week, I seem a bit overwhelmed, I probably am.

Again, thank you all so much for following along on my bloggy journey and our little lives here.  I am honored and humbled to have you.

P.S.  I'm also sorry it's taking me a long time to respond to a lot of your comments lately!  I'm going to try and catch up on that too!

Hugs!

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

From Here To Eternity - Trendy Award

Yay!  I received my first blog award from Jhen, over at From Here To Eternity.  Thank you so much for thinking of me!  If you haven't already, please go check her blog out.  She's a very real and inspiring blogger.

There it is, over on my sidebar, aren't I so trendy?!

And, I think you are too.  So, I am passing the award on to 10 other trendy ladies:

1.  Elizabeth - Flourish In Progress
2.  Anastasia - Sweetbutterbliss
3.  Libby - Bonjour
4.  Anne - Sugar Bowl Mix
5.  Midnight Mama - Dear Daughter
6.  Devan - Accustomed Chaos
7.  Melissa - Confessions of a Dr. Mom
8.  Kelly - City Mom
9.  Kat - Tenaciously Yours
10. Ameena - Fancy That Fancy This

Now, all you have to do to receive this award and pass it on is:

Post about it.
Pass it along to 10 others.
And, leave a link to the Trendy Blog Button so they can grab it too!

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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Perfect Mother?

Is there such a thing as a perfect mother?  Or, better yet, is there ever a point at which you stop worrying if you are doing enough?  Or the right things?

I know that I'm not a total mess.  I mean Kaia's achieving her milestones.  She's growing.  She's healthy.  She's eating well.  She is, generally, happy and content.  She has LOTS of things.  Almost all the toys, clothes, furniture a baby could dream of.

Yet, I worry as far as doing goes.  I'm not doing enough.  Do I set her down too often?  Should I be holding her more?  Are there more games I should be playing with her?  Should I be taking her to do more stimulating things?  Scheduling and attending playgroups, play dates?  Are my priorities right?  Should they be different?  What would she say?  What would she tell me, if she could only talk?  Should I be working harder to get her on a schedule?

Do all mothers have these thoughts?  These worries?  Is it with every baby?  Or only the first?  Do you become a better mother the more children you have?  Is the youngest the luckiest?  The oldest the least fortunate this way? 

I feel when Kaia gets older I will be much better at this mothering thing.  I look forward to trips to the library, the park, swim lessons, dance class, eventually school.  But this, the infant stage, I'm finding exceedingly difficult.  Don't get me wrong, I love every minute with Kaia.  I love everything about my angel baby.  But still, it is stressful.  It is frustrating.  It is full of worry.  Am I doing this right?  Or, am I doing at least, all right?  OK?  Passable?

Maybe my biggest resolution for this year should be, be the best mother I can be.  Always try to do better.  Because Kaia, Kaia is the perfect baby.  I could not ask for better.  I know I couldn't.

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