Sunday, February 13, 2011

newsletter: month 11

Dear Samson,

Holy crap balls, you are eleven months old! Daddy and I just got your birthday party invitations and are about to send them out. We had a really good time going through all the pictures we have of you and exclaiming about how small you used to be and what a little boy you look like now. I can hardly believe that are almost a whole year old!

You crack me up at least once a day. You know how to shake your head no but it's not always conversationally appropriate. Sometimes it is though and I'm still not sure how much of that is coincidence and how much is you really understanding and responding. You're very smart though, and you do communicate with me an awful lot for a little baby. But about the laughing. You will shake your head no just before you do something you're not supposed to. Also if you bump into something, you'll often sit back and shake your head no. Sometimes I laugh because you have just burst out with random laughter all by your little self in the middle of the room. Other times it's because you've taken my face in mine and blown me a kiss or the way you smile when you see my hair down. You're completely adorable, even when you're being a huge stinker.

You pull my hair and you steal my glasses right off my face. You spit food right back at me sometimes and you act like we're trying to poison you when we offer and encourage finger foods. Sometimes you will cry like your heart is broken because Daddy picked you up and you wanted me or vice versa. You determindly crawl into the kitchen even though we put up a baby gate and you constantly find pieces of paper to chew on even though we have to dig them out so you stop gagging. I am fascinated by watching you process things and try new ways to get places or how you play with the same toy in a variety of ways. But I'm still going to teach you how to say, "My name is Samson, and I can be a stinker" because it's totally true.

A few times in the past week, you've pulled yourself up on some furniture and then let go and stood all by yourself for a minute or two before sitting down and crawling away. Sometimes if I set you down on the floor, you'll stand unassisted for a little bit and look around deciding where to go. You cruise around the living room like a little pro and I really think you'll be walking before you turn one. When Daddy and I are walking back and forth in the hallway and you're crawling inbetween our feet, I can see you trying to process how to walk like we do. I am excited to see where you want to explore and how you will get there but I'm also a little nervous. You just are not such a baby anymore.

I see glimpses of both me and Daddy in your personality all the time, all mixed in with everything you are just by yourself. I see you lean back and take things in and react only when you really need to just like Daddy does. And I see how you watch me do something and listen to me explain it to you and then insist on doing it your own way anyway just like how I do. My biggest hope is that I can show you that it's okay to ask for help and it's okay to follow someone's example and it's okay to not always know how to do everything by yourself. I love that you are okay in a room of strangers if you can still see me or Daddy in the room with you. You're a huge charmer of strangers when we go out to eat or are running errands. I'm not sure if I have a heartbreaker on my hands or just a very friendly little guy. But I couldn't be happier that I get to just hang around and find out.

Sometimes, especially after a particularly long night, I wish that I had gotten married and had a baby when I was younger. It is a lot harder for me to bounce back after very little sleep! But overall, I'm glad that I'm your mom as a thirty year old. I have a lot more patience than I did five or ten years ago. I have a lot more confidence in myself. I trust myself more. I can see what you need better now than I know I would have been able to five or ten years ago. I'm going to make a hundred million more mistakes and you're going to yell at me and slam the door and be frustrated, but I'm coming at all this parenthood stuff from a good place. I love you like crazy and I always will.You are simply amazing.

Thank you again for making me a mama.

I love you, Samson.

Love, Mama

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

humpday happiness

Some stuff that is making me happy...

...impromptu (kind of) coffee dates with good friends!
...making my son laugh every night by making up silly songs while I get him ready for bed.
...clean clothes.
...a nice warm house on a very cold day.
...making new mommy friends. husband apparently working on some super secret Valentine's day something.
...planning date night! very long hair, even though I still don't do all that much with it.
...cold beer.
...the redesign at
...that darth vader car commercial!
...playing Words With Friends. refunds
...Superbowl commercials in general
...planning S's first birthday party!
I have a hard time letting go sometimes.

When I first started dating my now husband, he had this friend who was very prominent in his life. She was the source of many frustrations for me and an active instigator of problems or attempted problems between me and him. Over the past few years I have gone from being blindingly angry whenever she's been or tried to be a part of my life in any way to trying to be friendly to deciding it was okay to just not want to engage any more at all. My son was born during the time that I was attempting to be friendly but since she didn't come by the hospital during our extended stay or talk to me at all about visiting or congratulate me or anything like that, I figured she had finally decided to move on. It turned out that she hadn't, and even though she and I had never talked about her seeing my son, she has decided I use him as a weapon against K's friends by not letting any of them see him. That's ridiculously untrue but you can't reason with an unreasonable person. She sent me a nasty email in October and after K called her and asked her what she was thinking, she decided to end their friendship and all communication.

I should just be glad. In the height of my frustration and anger with her, I remember thinking that I didn't want her at my wedding and I would never let her hold any of my babies. It came true... K and I with our super small court room wedding didn't invite any friends because we could barely handle all the family drama as it was and I never knew she even wanted to come see S. I'm glad I didn't have to sort out all the conflicted feelings that would have arisen in either case.

But you know what? I still want to have my say. I want to tell her exactly what I think of her and why both me and K are better off for her not being in our lives any more. I want to respond to that nasty email line by line. I want to tell her I hope her son meets someone exactly like her and that girl does everything she did to K to him. Everything. I want her to write me a check for all the times I helped K make sure all the bills were paid while they were roommates. I want to make her cry.

Truthfully I don't spend a lot of time thinking about this. But any time I do spend is more than I should.

It's over and done with, I should be able to just forget it all and move on.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

you might be a mom if...

I have a movie review I forgot to finish, so I'll post it maybe tomorrow... Monday Movie Reviews may just be back! Yay!

And for my actual post today... Some things I was thinking about in regards to motherhood.

You know you're a mom when... don't expect to be able to poop in peace. REALLY enjoy watching Sesame Street. poop, drool, snot, spit up, pee, etc doesn't faze you. go to the grocery store with your hair halfway combed and are just glad you got two matching shoes on.
...the idea of sleeping in makes you wistful for a moment.
...Little People are REALLY fun to play with. cheer for really random things. can do almost everything one handed without a second thought. find yourself talking in the third person to someone who has a tenuous at best grasp on English. from six months ago make you tear up.

More as I think of them!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

I went to my parent's house to watch the commercials during the Super Bowl. To be honest, I know a fair amount about football. I just don't care about it at all. I don't want S playing it because there is literally a national fund for paralyzed high school football players. That scares the crap out of me. A freak accident can happen at any time, but it's not as much of a FREAK accident if there's a national fund already set up to support victims. Basketball, soccer, track, golf, karate, whatever else he wants is totally fine by me. Except wrestling. Same exact issue.

Anyway, K had to work and S and I loaded up the car and went over to my parent's house and ate too much yummy food and played and talked and laughed and watched some tv. And the thing that was really great to me was watching my parents interact with S. They love him to pieces and he clearly adores them as well. He's a really smart little kid and he surprises my parents with the way he plays with toys sometimes. It's great.

I love my family very much. I feel really lucky to be able to see my parents pretty much whenever I want to and I'm hoping to eventually get to know K's family in a way that allows the same kind of interactions.

Good times, good times.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

i'm watching through my own light as it turns the shade of you

I have never known sleep deprivation like I do as a mom.

I love being a mom. I love my son more than I ever knew was possible. But there are days, like today, when I would love to get back into bed and just stay there for five or six hours.

When I was pregnant, I hated it when people would tell me to make sure to get sleep because I wouldn't be able to later. First of all, once I hit the third trimester, I couldn't really sleep all that well anyway. I would just lay in bed next to my husband and listen to him breathe or snore and read blogs and whatnot on my phone. Secondly, even if I was sleeping 20 hours a day, it's not like I was storing it up in some sort of bank I could make withdrawals out of now. Thirdly, as a pregnant lady I intensely disliked when people would tell me what I was in for because I knew from my nieces and nephew that no two babies are alike, no two moms are alike, and no two home situations are alike. It just got on my nerves to have someone so knowingly tell me what things would be like especially because the most likely people to share these kinds of things didn't know me all that well.

My whole goal every night is to be in bed myself at 1 am to be able to watch/fall asleep to Friends on tv. Sometimes I make it, sometimes I don't. Sometimes, like last night, I was actually in bed several hours before 1 but just as I drifted off to sleep, the baby woke up. I walk a fine line when that happens. I want to make sure I'm awake enough to figure out what he needs but stay asleep enough that once I get him settled back in his crib I can go back to sleep myself. Sometimes that is super tricky. And some nights when I have him asleep in my arms and I lay him down in his crib and he pops right up, I pick him up with tears in my eyes because I am really that tired.

In most ways I am really glad that I waited awhile (at least compared to my family history and sister and cousins) to have my first baby. I have a lot more patience and understanding now than I did ten years ago. I have a husband who has a lot more patience and understanding of me than he did five years ago when we first met. But sometimes I wish that I still had the same energy and ability to stay up ridiculously late and get up early and be just fine. I know I could figure it all out if I was working full-time, but right now I'm thankful I'm a stay at home mom and can take naps when S naps sometimes.

Friday, February 4, 2011

let it snow let it snow let it snow

San Antonio just had 65 straight hours of freezing temperatures. I realize that in many parts of the country that's not particularly a big deal, but it kind of is here in south central Texas. Last night we had freezing drizzle that turned into a layer of ice everywhere and after a few hours of that, it actually snowed. The official measurement was 0.4", which again, is not much compared to maybe most of the country, but is a big deal here! The last time it snowed was seven years ago. But about four years ago, there was a big ice storm that similarly shut the city down because things like this happen so rarely that San Antonio just doesn't have the equipment to deal with it.

When S woke up this morning, we bundled him up and went outside for pictures. This kid has had an amazing life already. He's been to another state, been on an airplane, and been in snow in Texas all before turning one year old!

Most of the snow melted by about 2 pm today, but there's still a few patches on our lawn that were sheltered by shadows all day. And part of our little sidewalk up to our house is icy tonight. We're back in the midst of a 12 hour freeze, but tomorrow's forecast of 60 is going to feel downright balmy.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

pinto beans and picadillo

I'm trying to lose weight and I really enjoy cooking. I've been working on making meal planning by at least the week a habit because it makes grocery store trips so much easier and cheaper. This is all culminating in a lot of really good meals and leftovers at home.

Tonight, pinto beans and picadillo with flour tortillas is what we're having. K and I are trying to get away from using the seasoning packets you can pick up even though they're super cheap. They tend to have either a lot of sodium or a lot of sugar you can avoid if you season things yourself. I'm trying to be mindful of being healthy for me and K right now but also for S to grow up eating good homemade food. I hope that I can teach him just by showing him that it's easy to eat healthy at home and still eat really good food. And also that it's important, easy, and fun to have physical activity in your life on a daily basis. Hopefully I'll get there myself on that one soon!

So anyway, pinto beans. Super easy. Super delicious. And a side benefit is your house smells amazing all day long. First, you have to either soak the beans overnight or do a quick soak where you boil them for an hour. Allegedly this helps you to not have gas when you eat them, but based on my experience with my husband last night, I'm going to say that I either didn't do it right or there's something else to add to it later to make it really non gas inducing. Then, you put them in a pot with a white or yellow onion cut in medium sized chunks, a hunk of pork fat, a jalapeno or two, and minced garlic. Cover the whole thing with water so there's about two inches of water covering it all. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to very low and put a lid about halfway over the pot. Let simmer for at least four hours. But longer is totally fine. Check every 45 minutes to an hour to make sure there's water covering the whole mess of goodness. About two hours into it or so, I taste the broth and see how it is. I usually add garlic powder and pepper to taste. They turn out really yummy. And if you want, you can make refried beans the next day. All you do is pour leftover beans in a pan, add a little bit of oil, and heat them and mash them all up.

And picadillo. I did one pound of ground sirloin, half a yellow onion, two small potatoes, a can of diced tomatoes, and a jalapeno. You put the onion, cubed potato, and beef (you could use ground chicken or turkey if you want too) in the pan and cook it all together. Make sure all the beef is crumbled and cooked through. Season it with salt, pepper, a small amount of cinnamon, cumin, and garlic powder. When the beef is cooked, add the can of tomatoes and mix in well. Add about half a can of water and stir it all up and then cover the pan to make sure the potatoes get nice and soft. You can eat this as a taco filling, by itself, or top off a bowl of beans with it. It's delicious!

So there's my random meal tips for the day!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

humpday happiness

A small list of things making me happy these days...

...finally starting to actually feel better! It only took 5 days of Tamiflu and 10 days of antibiotics but I think I'm on the mend!
...a husband who wants to cuddle every night. That's not code for anything, but our sex life is great too.
...watching channel 4 news every weeknight.
...How I Met Your Mother
...planning S's first birthday party!
...this cold weather!
...having a nice cozy home to be in during all this cold weather.
...lengthy phone calls with Californian friends
...S standing next to me as I prepare his bubble bath, watching intently and with anticipation even though it literally happens the same way every night.
...being able to put a bunch more stuff in our recycle bin than in our trash bin. I'm from California, yo.
...talking about Valentine's Day plans with K
...the possibility of snow tomorrow!
...reading blogs (if you know of any good ones, let me know!)
...Top Chef All Stars
...eating better and making plans with K about how to do even better
...simmering things while it's cold outside
...Chinese food delivery
...nice and hot showers
...Dr. Pepper

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

baby baby baby oh

Tentatively I want to post something every day this month.

Writing is very healing for me. I haven't been traumatized recently or anything like that, but writing helps me sort my head out and be able to let things go. It's been an intense year, eighteen months or so and a lot has happened. I think maybe if I can get back into posting on my blog, it'll also be easier to get back into my personal journaling.

I think this is going to be good.