Attention, Louis. Since AT&T prefers to not deliver my text messages to you in a timely fashion.

I have nothing interesting to add to the Internet tonight.

Dear Louis,

In case you read this before the text message that I sent you (rather than walking downstairs to tell you in person), will you please turn off the sprinkler that has been on for, oh, 10 hours now? All my fault.

Thanks. Oh, and it’s trash night.

Love,
Lindsey

Posted in Louis, love, marriage | Leave a comment

Pee Pee, also: HALP (could also be titled “therapy session notes” if you were a counselor)

We bought Soren a Bjorn potty chair a few months ago. It’s red, awesome, and Soren pretty much loves it. We also bought him the book Potty by Leslie Patricelli, who writes the most precious and adorable of all children’s board books. Love them. Soren would sit and sit and sit on the potty all the live long day without any production. Would immediately wet his diaper afterwards. One day, I let him know that he would get a chocolate chip if he peed, and he immediately complied. This is where we were with potty training for the past couple of months. Just casually getting comfortable with it.

About a month ago, he told us that he needed to poop and then proceeded to do so in the potty (the big potty, no less). Yes, I am writing a blog about my child’s elimination. I have two master’s degrees, so I get to litter the internet with mindlessly boring therapy sessions about being a mama. You don’t actually need any degrees to do that, so never mind. Sorry. I have an interesting internal life! Really!

Ahem. Soren loves undies. The last page in Potty is just the word “Undies!” surrounded by pictures of various interesting floating underpants. We had a few pairs of undies from his Christmas stocking at Papa and Grammy’s, and I recently bought a few pairs of the thicker, looser (easier for him to pull up and down himself) Gerber training pants as well as a pack of Lego Batman undies, mostly for Louis’ benefit (unfortunately, the 2T-3T size does not fit him at this time).

In the past few weeks, I’ve started kicking off the day with undies and then taking Soren to the potty every 15-30 minutes. In the morning he’ll be a total champ, and he’s even been pooping in the potty in the mornings the past couple of days. After nap though (and he’s usually dry after his nap if I take him fast enough), it goes downhill fast. Sometimes he’ll refuse to wear undies or he’ll sit on the potty indefinitely without anything happening (despite generous encouragement!) and then he’ll wet his pants within five minutes. Almost every single afternoon, he’ll wet his pants at least 4-5 times (just between 3 and 7). He also tends to just go a tiny bit at a time, which is totally maddening. Yesterday, I only needed to take him every 30 minutes and he rocked it. We went for a bike ride and hike on Saturday, and he kept himself dry the whole time (and peed in the woods when prompted). Then today, I was in a horrible mood, Soren behaved like a wee deaf child all day, and a girl at our gym (which will go unnamed) childcare told me to just put him in Pull Ups next time (he had one accident, was wearing plastic pants over his undies, and I fail to see how changing a diaper once is much different than swapping out a pair of undies one time- he didn’t even get his pants wet). He wet his pants so much at dinner that it ran off his booster and puddled dramatically all over the dining room. I then left him with Daddy and went to the store for some quiet time.

Last Wednesday, I declared that I had been too ambitious, that this was more about competition than responding to Soren’s readiness cues, that I would rather keep him in diapers. I washed the handful of BumGeniuses that had accumulated in the bin over the past few days, and slapped a diaper on him. Didn’t even ask him to go pee on the potty between changes. I said we were done at least until we got back from the THREE (One, Two, Three!) trips we are taking in the next month’s time. I took the readiness quizzes in two potty training books I had picked up, fully expecting to see “step away from the potty training book and no one gets hurt.” NOPE. Well within the bounds of “why didn’t you start this sooner, you loser?” on both of them. Oh well, I figured my try again in a month plan was the best plan of all of the plans.

The next morning, naturally, Soren refused to let me put on a diaper and begged for undies. And had the best day yet! Of course, I let him pick out a bag of Skittles (the most brightly colored bag in the checkout line, not that he had any idea what they were) and hot damn, he was motivated to keep his undies dry (1 skittle!), go pee in the potty (1 skittle!), and Poop in the potty (2 skittles!). He figured out the currency system and drooled rainbow all over his t-shirts for a few consecutive days. Such a champ. Such a champ, in fact, that I backed the reinforcement off this morning: 1 skittle for a combined dry diaper and pee in the potty, and 1 more for a poop in the potty. And today was a total train wreck.

Ok, that’s not completely true. He did pretty well this morning. He used the potties at a coffee shop, the library, and the gym and stayed dry on a long walk until we stopped at the park afterwards. He had what felt like a million accidents, but in hindsight was really closer to 5. A couple were pretty big ones, though. And come to think about it, he drank a lot more than he usually does.

So, I was planning to ask for advice, and maybe I still am? Should I give it a rest? Louis suggested taking the candy out of it completely to see if he’s really ready to potty train or if he’s just performing for candy. He gets excited about his success, but he rarely initiates. Maybe he likes the game of it, but he’s not quite to the holding it when he realizes he has to go? I’ve left him in the wet undies a few times just to make sure he really gets why it’s not good to wet his pants, we tried to encourage him to not get Batman wet, and he has decreased his frequency and increased his quantity, as a rule. However, if he says, “No no pee pee in undies!” I know it’s too late, and that’s really as close as he gets to initiating unless it’s with poop (when I usually have a minute or two to get him to the potty chair after he tells me it’s a no no to poop in undies). Is it normal for him to not be interested in initiation of potty time? We’ve been reading him children’s potty books like they’re going out of style and talking up how grown ups and big kids all use the potty and not diapers. We’ve been demonstrating ourselves for months and months (going to the bathroom by myself is a treat these days). I packed all the BumGeniuses away in his closet with hopes that I can strip them and stick them into the storage room soon. Thinking that maybe the lack of visual cue of diapers would do the trick?

Somebody say something. While I’m overwhelmingly ready to just slap a BumGenius (adorable, waterproof, easy BumGenius!) back on him tomorrow, I’m also afraid of waffling constantly between potty training and not. Isn’t that more confusing than anything? Aren’t I supposed to be an expert on child behavior? Holy cow, applying the parenting techniques and research with which I am intimately acquainted is not so much the easy part. Mama needs a time out, let’s just put it that way. Another way: I am finally ok with summer ending and work starting up again (at my awesome, amazing, challenging job that I adore). Six whole weeks until regularly scheduled days to talk about grown up things (ok, other people’s children and their learning needs, but still)? Too many days.

Quick, someone tell me I’m not ruining my child!

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Getaway!

I worked at Starbucks when they started the registering your Starbucks card thing, and so I did. I even had it on auto-reload for about a year as a way of budgeting how much I could spend there per month. When they started the Gold Card program in 2008, Starbucks sent me a free Gold Card! Yay! I get free soy, other add-ons, and frequently other free offers (whenever a new product comes out, I get at least one free, plus a free drink for my birthday and after ever 10 purchases). They get my business way more frequently, because some places charge almost a dollar for soy. We both win!

Right after we got married, Louis and I signed up for a (free) Hyatt Gold Passport account, though, unfortunately, too late to get (tons of) points from our honeymoon stay. Still, we’ve had the card forever. A few months ago, Hyatt sent us a credit card offer that included two free nights at any Hyatt in the world, anytime. You better believe we went ahead and signed up, and we moved our monthly expenses that we pay off every month to the Hyatt card to get points for more free nights. And we just booked our two free nights, after which we plan to cancel the card, our last one. (We will still have a line of credit from the bank with simple interest that we used just today to pay off our big credit card, glory glory, and then no more credit cards for us!).

We are going to Carmel, California for two nights in August. Soren is not invited. If we were paying real dollars for the room instead of no dollars, the room would cost $1070.00 for the two nights. ELEVEN HUNDRED DOLLARS. We still have to pay taxes on the room, but it’s still cheaper than a Motel 6 for 2 nights in most places. Southwest had a cheepy-cheep sale, and we’ll probably rent a little car because it’s cheaper than the shuttle one-way from the airport. I am so excited I don’t even know what to do with myself. I guess I should probably make sure my mom can babysit… CARMEL. Mmm.

Anyway, it’s a good deal to get in on things early. Do it.

Posted in epic win, freaking awesome, Louis, marriage, summer, travel | 7 Comments

A & Q

A: YES.
Q: Did Soren sleep 11 straight hours last night?

A: Almost certainly not.
Q: Will he do it again tonight? Or, you know, ever?

A: Glorious.
Q: How did it feel?

A: He’s slept straight through until morning a couple of times in the last two weeks when he got to bed late, but never from bedtime (7 pm) until daylight (6 am).
Q: Has this blessed event happened before?

WOO! Even attachment parented babies (cough, toddlers) can sleep through the night!

Posted in baby, babywise, believe it or not, epic win, freaking awesome, love, not whining, sleep, soren, toddler, win | 1 Comment

(Not Actually) Quickly!

Earlier, Soren wanted bubbles, so I made a batch of bubbles. “I bow bubble!” He said. Then he blew his first successful bubble.

Our church teaches from Baby Wise. Let me say that again: OUR CHURCH TEACHES FROM BABY WISE. Zzzt. That last part was my brain dying.

I was literally shaking with rage when I heard. Also, the part where the (very nice) man teaching the baby dedication class told the parents of newborns (one of whom had been in the NICU for a week and had just gotten breastfeeding back on track!) that they should be sleeping through the night by 10 weeks. SHOULD. OUGHT. YOU HAVE FAILED IF YOUR BABY IS ACTING LIKE A NORMAL BABY IN A FEW MORE WEEKS, YOU FAILEY FAILURES. My, ah, distaste was not well shielded from the speaker (though I was practicing a great deal of restraint, let me say), so he noted it, and I couldn’t even form coherent sentences about how horrible the news was. The majority of my response was all but wailing “No! No, no, no, no, no!” when he said that a big part of the curriculum comes from Ezzo. After he spent the entire class talking about how raising kids is all about relationship and communicating with your kids. Apparently, it’s not necessary to learn how to communicate with your child until they are sleeping through the night by force. One of the other fathers in the class said that he’d be interested in hearing why I dislike it, and I still couldn’t even communicate with him. Louis and I both gave him the address of ezzo.info and let him know that Ezzo’s own adult children won’t speak to him. I mean, honestly, Real Life. How can this possibly be a good idea?

Ahem. I was angry. I’m already working on my letter to the church’s family ministries pastor (I spent a large part of last night composing it, actually). Also, I am now quite sleepy due to staying up all night angry. ANGRY.

Posted in awful, baby, babywise, boo, epic fail, parenting, rant, religion, sad, soren, toddler | 20 Comments

you’re going to want to go ahead and full screen this one.

The Mountain from Terje Sorgjerd on Vimeo.

Posted in pretty, video | Leave a comment

If you don’t like bad words, don’t watch this video.

If you like funny things, do watch this video.

Posted in hee-larious, video, youtube | 3 Comments

Dumm.b.

“Dear Lindsey,” I imagine you all (you?) writing, “What is with the hideously boring play-by-plays about Soren’s sleep habits? Do you honestly think any of us (I) care? We (I) don’t. Pull it together, lady. Love, your readers (reader).”

I’m not really sure why the thing I’ve defaulted to writing about is how Soren’s been sleeping. It’s borderline cruel, I think. I feel guilty for not blogging (not just Catholics, Gaby!), and I have a billion things I think that maybe I’d enjoy writing about, but then I sit down and open WordPress, and then sit there. Most of the time, I just close the tab and move on with my life, more guilty about depriving the internet of my genius. What’s that? No one cares? Excellent.

I’ve been working a lot a lot, and while I deeply love my job and think it’s an absolutely wonderful fit for me, I cannot wait for summer. Because while I enjoy doing the work that I do, I cannot stand working full-time. Being away from Soren this much and leaving the house in such a perpetual state of disarray as it is in is hideous. Hate it. Hate hate hate. A few weeks ago, I worked 82 hours in a 7 day period. EIGHTY TWO HOURS. I get paid, to put it in perspective, for 15 hours a week (I only get paid for two of the four days per week I officially work, due to being an intern). Contract hours are silly- I don’t know a single person who works even close to as few hours are we’re paid to work in our contract. Us greedy, greedy, heartless educators. Special ed teachers are definitely the worst; I get emails from the special ed teachers in my buildings at utterly horrible times (11:30 pm, 4 am, weekends). If the job requires more work than there are hours in the workday, then that’s what we do. Like I said, we’re in this for the huge, huge salaries and easy-breezy work schedule.

The State of Idaho has decided that we are ineffective, useless, lazy sons-of-bitches, so education funding is being cut to teacher salaries (teachers who live in state and spend their sad little paychecks in state) and instead being channelled to computer manufacturers and for-profit online education companies, all out of state (though, curiously, who gave a LOT of money to getting the current Not-so-superintendent elected in November). So, not only will it decrease the effectiveness of education in Idaho, it will send money that was usually spent in state to other states. GENIUS. Even less money for the state to use for fund education. I should note, that one of the primary arguments is that education in Idaho has been getting worse, but IT’S NOT TRUE. More kids know how to read, more kids are meeting math and science goals, and more kids are getting the early intervention help they need to keep them from becoming a more expensive case to fix down the road. It’s like the legislators decided that being elected meant that voters decided that the legislators know everything, and no amount of ACTUAL FACTS will ever change their minds. Hateful, weasley legislators. When in actuality, the only condition for getting elected in Idaho is having an (R) after your name on the ballot. Even if you’re being prosecuted for income tax evasion and (literally) stealing timber off of land in trust for the Idaho Department of Education, you can get re-elected because almost no one in Idaho knows anything about politics other than that they will only ever vote for a Republican. Now, there are massive movements to recall Luna (the superintendent) and referendums to repeal the horrible education-killing legislation, but I’d venture to guess that half the people who are very involved and even more who passively support those movements voted for the people who are responsible. And they will do the same thing next election.

Whew, now I’m all fired up. And Soren’s awake! So, I’m going to go play with him and read a million books.

Posted in education, epic fail, work | 1 Comment

Growing up so fast!

I kid you not, less than five minutes after I published that last blog, Soren woke up and had a horrendous night. Horrible. And you wonder why I’m superstitious.

It actually kicked off the worst several weeks of co-sleeping that we’ve had. I’m a person who likes consistency and not being flailed at and upon. He’s occasionally had similarly restless nights, but they’ve been few and far between and always bookended by especially calm and cuddly nights. Not lately. Lately, it’s all misery and boo and unhappiness.

So, last night at bedtime, I told Soren he was going to spend the whole night in his crib like a big boy. And, save for cuddling and nursing twice, he did. What a champ. He’s been pretty restless so far because of a sniffly nose, so who knows how it’ll look tonight, but Louis and I have suddenly decided we’re ready to have Soren sleeping in his own bed all night.

Oh my gosh. This musical Grey’s Anatomy is the worst thing I’ve ever seen. WHY.

Ahem, I know you are all very curious about Soren’s current sleep habits.

ALSO, THIS SHOW IS TERRIBLE. Maybe you thought it already was, but holy cow, this is a whole new level. SO BAD. SO HATEFUL.

I can’t write a blog at a time like this. I’m being assaulted by this terrible episode of doom.

Posted in baby, sleep, soren | Leave a comment

JINX!

I haven’t written about Soren’s sleep patterns in a long while, mostly because I’m unreasonably (by default) superstitious, and I didn’t want to jinx anything. He’s been in a holding pattern for many months now, though, even through four molars and two (almost four) eyeteeth, so I’m just going to casually mention how he perhaps sleeps sometimes? (Though, actually, almost every night) About half of the time, for both naps and sleep, he begins asking, “Night-night?” as the appointed time approaches. His naps tend to be 2-3 hours, except at my parents’ houses, when he almost always chooses to awaken after a mere hour. Unfortunately, this occurs 3-4 days per week. We still cuddle him before he goes to sleep, but we can lay him down drowsy and he’ll almost always snuggle into his pillow; sometimes, he gets rather insistent that we pat his bum while he drifts off. At night, it’s about the same. He still nurses for a couple of minutes, and then when his eyelids start to droop, I (or Louis) lay him down, he rolls onto his side, and almost always falls asleep without even a bum pat. This happens usually around 7 pm, even though it’s still light out at 7.

THEN, he frequently stays that way until 3 am. That means 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep! Well, not for me, of course, because I have Things to Do. Important Things. I can get a good 5 hours, though, if I’m disciplined with my hypothetical 10 pm bedtime (IF, ha!). At 3 am, he will just stand in his crib and point toward our room, telling Louis, “Mama,” if Lou hesitates at all to ferry him into bed with us. Most nights, he’s a nice little snuggler; some nights, I resolve that I’m never sleeping with him and his grabby, grabby hands again ever, ever, amen. Then, the next night, he lays his little head on my shoulder and throws his wee arm around my neck and stays put until my alarm goes off. The worst thing about him sleeping with us right now is that our room is much brighter than his in the mornings (white curtains instead of his dark brown, and windows that face East-ish), so he’s been popping awake at the crack of dawn, ready to take on the day. Soren’s so damned emphatic when he’s ready to take on the day, jumping and hollering and pointing and crawling off the bed so that he can run around getting into mischief. He’s a morning person, I suppose. This usually occurs around 6:30 or so. SIX THIRTY. And Soren has no respect for weekends, bless him. And by ‘bless him,’ I mean, ‘I really wish he understood that one should always sleep in on weekends.’

So there you have it. There is hope for us all. Even without cry-it-out, my kiddo can fall asleep in his crib, staying put for hours at a time. If he were still awakening every 2 hours to nurse? Cry-it-out would almost certainly at least be on the table by this point. But hey! The No Cry Sleep Solution wins again! No crying! More sleeping! Months and months of it. And lo, I felt happy.

Posted in baby, babywise, not whining, sleep, soren, toddler, win | Leave a comment