Thursday, July 28, 2011

How Did We Get Here?

Today I had my prenatal glucose test for my third pregnancy.

On Monday I will already be 28 weeks pregnant.  Seven months.  Third trimester.  Twelve weeks to go. (!!!)

Today I put my youngest down for a nap in a real bed.  Not a crib.

Today my oldest won't be taking a nap.  Because he's almost five (five!) and naps are on their way out for him.

Today I ordered bunk beds.  And after I clicked "submit" I sent a text to Brian asking him how we got here.  Here being "bunk bed status."

He replied with a funny comment.  I won't write it here but it had something to do with the way babies come about.  That silly husband of mine.

When I was pregnant with William it felt like the baby stage was going to last forever.  I remember putting together his crib and thinking he would be in it forever.  And then suddenly I was pregnant again and he wasn't the baby and he wasn't too little for a big bed.

I've gotten a little smarter along the way.  This time I'll be purchasing a dresser to double as a changing table for the baby's room.  Because what good is a changing table without any changing to be done?  And I bought a twin over full bunk bed with an option to add a trundle.  Because now I know.  Nashes like to populate like bunnies.  But they don't live in big house.

For Brian, one of six siblings, this is all he's ever known.  Except for a brief period during his senior year of college, he has never called a room all his own.  I, too, shared a room growing up but it was always a choice, not a demand for space saving.  And I moved into my own room once I hit junior high.

While I definitely appreciated being able to call the basement all my own throughout my teenage years, I can also see the benefit of keeping everyone in tight quarters.  Nowadays, with sprawling suburban homes, it's easy for family members to get lost.  For the family dynamic to slowly fade into separate corners, separate rooms.  Keeping them boarded up together will keep us all more connected.  Or at least that's what I tell myself as I'm trying to squeeze another peg into my car in the game of Life.

"Doesn't it seem like we were just prancing down the Quad to our next class?" I recently asked Brian.  "Back then did you ever dream you'd be married with three kids before you turned 30?"

"Yeah," he replied, "I actually did."

And that is so totally Brian.  And that is so totally why I love him.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ahh, That's Better

I was family-less this weekend.  Not really by choice but rather by circumstance.  Brian had a bachelor party in Chicago and his mom offered to take the kids.  At first I wanted to decline.  I hate not being with the kids on a weekend in July.  Summer is so short and there's so many memories to be made.  But with the heat soaring that week and everyone getting a little stir crazy and short with one another, Brian convinced me a little break from it all might be nice.  So I accepted.

I did get some house projects done.  I walked through an antique store.  And I phoned in some appointments I'd been meaning to make.  I got to go to a party without being distracted.  I went to mass by myself.  The early one, even.  And I read a lot.

But mostly I felt sad by the empty quiet of our house and all the Facebook statuses describing family weekend plans from all my friends.

It's so nice, and good even, to have time away by myself.  And sometimes it's not.  It's just one of those things where you have to find the balance.

When I went to pick up the kids on Sunday, William told me he "missed me so much last night" and that he "told Nana I was ready to go home."

My heart pounded with guilt.  That is an absolute first for he, who loves to have sleepovers at other people's houses.

When I went to bed on Sunday night I sulked at the time lost.  But when I woke on Monday I felt renewed.  The oppressing heat was gone.  Lucy was in a good mood.  (See? I think the crab in her only comes out in the heat.)  William was in a good mood.  Brian delayed leaving for work by 15 minutes.  Fifteen minutes to sip our coffee at the dining room table.  Fifteen minutes to reconnect.  Fifteen minutes made all the difference.

I took the kids to the park early.  They ate lunch and took good naps.  For dinner we had pork chops on the grill and Minnesota-grown corn-on-the-cob.  Then we pranced out into the backyard until the sun went down and the mosquitoes got the best of us.

Summer is just one of those seasons I hold with an iron fist.  Not wanting to waste a drop of sunlight.  Sometimes I feel a little crazy when I demand that time.  And sometimes I feel crazy for not demanding more of it.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

8 Observations in the Oppressing Heat

Heat indices are breaking records at 120.  Dew points are also breaking records in the 80s.  (That's higher than the Amazon jungle, by the way.)  And regular temperatures are just as impressive.  My computer is located on the front porch of our home.  Normally the most serene and inspiring place in our house.  But lately it's been known as the only place without air conditioning.  So with sweat beading my upper lip and the hazy air blurring my sight and my thoughts, here's a quick and dirty on the hot and schweaty.

1.  Lucy is crab.  Is she a girl?  Is she a second-born?  Is she two?  Is it the heat?  It's really hard to say.  But she has been dealing out some major meltdowns lately.  Of course as soon as she gets that out of the way she bounces back up and does the cutest thing you've ever seen from a two-year-old in your whole life.  And that just totally sums up Lucy.

2.  Carrying around another human being 24 hours a day in this sweltering heat is just as hot as it literally sounds.  I'm speaking, of course, about being pregnant in the summer.  There are some positives.  Like the summer maternity clothes are way cuter and wearing minimal clothing (or just opting out completely) with an expanding belly is comfortable in more ways than one.

3.  The heat makes no difference to William.  "But Mommy, why can't I go ride my bike?"  I'll tell you why.  Because if I let him go out there I'll never get him back in.  Until, of course, I'm picking up his listless body to driving him to the ER for heat stroke because he hasn't figured out when to say when.  Thirty below and he wants to go sledding.  One hundred and twenty and he wants to run races.  Are all boys like this?

4.  T-ball is my new hell on earth.  I don't mind going to t-ball.  I don't mind watching t-ball.  But bringing Lucy and trying to tell her she can't play t-ball with the big kids for one hour is excruciating.  Add in the heat and I think I might explode.  First she runs on the field.  Then I warn her.  Then I chase her.  Then I hold [read: trap] her in my arms.  Then she screams.  Then people stare.  Then I sing her a song.  Then she's distracted for a whole 30 seconds.  Then I give her a cracker.  Then I give her my phone.  Then she makes a call to India.  Then I take the phone away.  Then she screams.  Then people stare.  Then I look at my watch.  Fifty minutes left.

You follow me?  I loathe t-ball.

5.  I don't mean to go all Negative Nellie on you.  It's just that when we were experiencing the worst winter ever I didn't think I'd be living a similar life style in the middle of July.  Having to be quarantined when the sun is shining brilliantly through our windows is confusing.  And it feels like my summer glory days are slipping right through my fingers.  I can hear the clock tick tocking down and there's nothing I can do about it except pout.

But it's not all bad, I guess.  Like...

6.  All the back pain I've been experiencing this pregnancy is completely gone.  Thanks, I think, to the high humidity.  My skin is also vibrant and supple with all the water in the air.  Is this why old people move to Florida?

7.  My laundry pile is at record-level lows.  Not because I'm so on top of it but because the kids aren't generally wearing more than their skivvies all day long.

8.  Many things become "optional" in high heat.  To name a few: makeup, showers, anything except a ponytail for a hair do, dinner, clothes, calorie counting, bed sheets and exercise.  What am I forgetting?

Friday, July 15, 2011

Copings of Neat Freak

My windows and doors are smudged with fingerprints.

My bare feet feel the scrape of crumbs and sand when I walk across our hardwoods.

There's spilled milk from cereal bowls still on the dining room table.

The dishwasher has not been unloaded.

Dishes sit in the sink.

Condensation from my iced latte pools the kitchen countertops.

When I'm not looking she scoops the yogurt with her hands.

Toys are strewn on the porch floor.

The sheets on the kids' beds are rumpled.

Whose home is this anyway?  Who have I, self-proclaimed neat freak, become?

She's still in there.  I let her come out every Wednesday when the house is, for a brief moment in time, restored to the state I prefer it in.

The mantle is dusted.

Dust bunnies vacuumed.

Sheets, crisp.

Towels, anew.

Windows wiped clear.

Bathtub grime be gone.

Floors scrubbed.  On hands and knees.

I thought adding more mess-makers to this family would multiply to my stress.  Visions of me chasing after dirty feet with damp paper towels swirled through my head.  Instead I calmly remind them to take off their shoes and remind myself that Wednesday will come.

And when Thursday morning comes I can wake up and say, "What do you want to do today?!"

I've created a new me.  A mish mash of who I am and who I need to be.  Satisfying the order that brings my calm and allowing calm when order is out to lunch.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Summer is a funny time for blogging. There's so much to write about. So many stories to tell. So many fun pictures to post. A thousand more than during the winter months.

Ones like this and this.

But the thing about blogging is that I have to actually take the time to step away from the living to do it.  And when the days are this long and this sunny and this warm and so, so full of I-don't-want-to-miss-a-single-second action, well, I choose the life of the living.  We live in the north after all and these days are numbered.

But while I've been away there have been two major happenings in the Nash household.  I cryptically alluded to one a few months back and it's finally come to fruition.  Brian has moved jobs to a new company.  Is this deju vu?  Didn't I just write that very sentence a couple years ago?  Such is the life of a salesman, I guess.  An opportunity came along and, as they say, he [read: we] couldn't pass it up.

I'm so proud of him for being so successful so early in his career.  And I don't mean success to be equal to money.  Although that part is always nice, isn't it?  What I mean is that Brian has a knack for creating opportunities for himself.  These opportunities appear to fall out of the sky right into his lap.  But I know better than that.  I know he's worked hard at creating a huge network for himself.  He's a people person through and through and it shows.

One of these days I'm going to write about my role in all this and what it means to be a housewife in the year 2011.  While I don't contribute financially to our household income I do believe our shared decision to have me stay at home has had a major impact on Brian's professional success which has relieved the burden of being a one-income family which has left more room for us to focus on us and how to be a more happy us.  It sounds so 1950s to leave the bread-winning solely to my husband but we've found a modern way to do it.

While Brian's been busy transitioning email and Blackberry contacts, I've been busy making the ol' switch-a-roo in Lucy's room.  Out with the baby, in with the big girl.  We are in Phase 1 on bedroom transitions before Baby #3 arrives in October.  And I have to say, so far I've been pleasantly surprised.  While there have been a few hairy nap and bed time routines everything seems to have smoothed itself out in about a week's time.  After the novelty of freedom without crib bars wore off, she realized we meant business and now her bedtime is as easy as it was with crib.

Right now we just have a mattress on the floor but Phase 2 will put her on the bottom of the bunk beds we have on order.  Phase 3, the trickiest in my opinion, will be combining William and Lucy into one room.  Any advice on this matter would be much appreciated.  I wouldn't be that worried if it weren't for their complete opposite sleep habits.  William is a hard sleeper while Lucy is a light sleeper.  William goes to bed early and wakes up early.  Lucy is a night owl and most days doesn't crack an eyelid before 9 o'clock.  I'm sure everything will eventually work itself out but I'm just not looking forward to the growing pains.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Summer Biz-ness

We've been busy.  Summer busy.  When I have more to post than a boat load of pictures, I'll let you know.
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