Remember when I'd write to you when you were still in my belly? Those Baby Bear Diaries are some of my favorites to look back on. We have come so far since those days. A whole year! You have gone from being a helpless little newborn babe to a mobile, opinionated, intelligent little girl. So I wanted to write you a little note about all the wonderful things you are doing these days.
Wow, these last 2 weeks have rocked me.
Both Grace and Cali seem a little more... what's the right word? Rebellious? Stubborn? Difficult in general? I've heard more cries and disgruntled grunts from Grace lately. She is crawling more, which is great, but also proves stressful at times as I try to steer her away from mischief. She is more needy and clingy, which has both its pros and cons. Cuddle times are at an all-time high! But the struggle to go to bed at night has also increased. And then the fur-baby, Cali, is all sorts of naughty lately. Barking, jumping, digging. She has grown into a very big dog, so sometimes it's easy to forget that she is still very much a puppy and still needs training.
But let's get to the real reason you're here: to read the story behind today's blog title. The Poop in the Bathtub.
This is a cautionary tale.
A tale of motherhood woes.
The moral(s): Don't get too comfortable. Don't congratulate yourself until the work is complete. Don't think that just because you avoided one poop, there isn't more in store for you!!!!
But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Grace had just gone in for her 1-year checkup. This doctor's appointment included 4 pokes: 1 on her toe to test her iron levels, and 3 in her thighs for various shots and vaccines. Needless to say, we left in tears.
The nurse had suggested that one way to help ease the pain of the shots would be to give Grace a warm bath. She's always loved baths, so I thought this was a perfect way to wrap up the day.
Andrew was out of the house on an errand. I filled the bathtub, plopped my nakey baby in the warm water, and sat nearby to watch Grace splash in the water and play with her bath toys. Suddenly, I saw "The Look": big eyes, concerned brow, scrunched red face. Accompanied with the struggling grunts, I knew Gracie had a #2 in store. Quickly, I pulled Grace out of the water and sat her hovering over the toilet bowl. Sure enough, a plop in the toilet water confirmed my suspicion: Grace had pooped. I quickly wiped her up, flushed, and placed Grace gently in the bathtub again.
This is where I made my mistake. While Grace continued playing, I silently celebrated my victory.
"I'm freaking Super-Mom!" I thought to myself. "I avoided having to pick up nasty, watered-down poop! Nice instincts, Maichael! Who should I text/call to tell of my new victory. My mom? My husband? My best friend?" There I sat basking in all my glory, not really paying attention to Grace.
*Disclaimer: it was enough attention that I would have been aware if Grace had slipped in the water and was in danger. However, it was NOT enough attention for me to catch "The Look" and Grunt in time for the inevitable to happen.
I saw the bubbles and tried to rush Grace over to the toilet once more, but it was too late. The deed was done, and the proof was sitting before me in the water.
Holding my little, naked baby before me, I couldn't deal with the problem immediately. We ran over to my bathroom, poured the water once more, and continued bathtime. And, somehow, I managed to convince Andrew to clean up the mess once he returned home (PS: I seriously have the best husband ever!).
So there you go. Maybe if I had been paying a little more attention to the signs. Maybe if I hadn't been giving myself a figurative pat on the back. Maybe. Maybe. Maybe it all could have been avoided.
May you ever be so lucky to avoid the poop in the bathtub.
But if/when it does happen, be sure to blog about it :)
I woke up at 7 am this morning. Not super early, but definitely earlier than I wanted for a lazy Saturday. I tried to convince my body to fall back asleep, but my mind refused, so I reluctantly shuffled downstairs.
Now it is 8:50 and my family is STILL ASLEEP! I'm in shock...but I am also not mad about it. My morning has been so productive: perusing recipes for the next few days, reading my scriptures, flipping through social media, tidying up the living room and putting away dishes in the kitchen. With my family still snoozing away, I had a grand idea: I should probably catch up on some blogging!
And when I say "Catch Up" I really mean..... "Wow! I have been absolutely TERRIBLE at writing lately!" I haven't posted about trips. I haven't written updates on my pregnancy. I've just gone MIA in the blogging world, and I feel pretty terrible about it. There was a time at the beginning of this blog where I was posting weekly, even if the week's events didn't seem especially exciting or entertaining. I need to go back to doing that.
So here are a few "quick" snippets of our lives lately:
Eating our way through Disneyland
We went to California with our friends, Rachel and Shawn. The highlight of the trip was our day at Disneyland. My mom offered to watch Grace for the day, so we were able to do an all-adults trip to the Magic Kingdom. Honestly, going to Disney in a "grown-up" group is such a different experience. We definitely had our priorities clear: eat everything!
And eat we did! We tried bacon mac-and-cheese at the Cozy Cone, lemon soft serve at the Adorable Snowman's Frosted Treats, and BBQ chicken skewers at Bengal Barbecue. We munched on cookies and churros. The boys sipped colorful slushy drinks. We ate soup from bread bowls for lunch and finished the day off with a corn dog late-night snack. It was gluttony at its finest.
I would say it was one of the best days at Disney I've ever experienced, but the tides turned when we made the unfortunate decision to ride Splash Mountain. WARNING: do NOT go on this ride with a full boat of adults. Andrew and I were in the front, and at the end of the ride we emerged soaked to the bone. Since the sun was already starting to set, we knew we were doomed to have wet, soggy clothes for the remainder of the day. It was a sad realization, so we searched around the park for some suitable sweats to buy and change into. And that is how Disney ate up even MORE of our hard-earned cash.
But all-in-all, it was a pretty wonderful trip with our great friends.
To be honest, I am not a fan of being pregnant. With both pregnancies, I have felt nauseous (PS: that is like the HARDEST word to spell!). I am 23 weeks pregnant now, and I am pretty sure this is to be the LONGEST pregnancy in the history of the world. I kid you not when I say that I was 21 weeks pregnant for at least a month!
My long days are accented with Grace crawling around the house and getting very upset when I tell her, "No, you cannot play with the dirty shoes." Then I sit on the floor to pet the dog and play with my daughter until my hips and lower back suddenly send stabbing signals to me that I am not as young as I used to be (yes, I also know that I'm not super old either) and that I am indeed growing another human inside of me.
But it's not all woes. I have started to feel my little one moving inside me, and that is my favorite part of being pregnant. Also, in case you haven't heard, we officially found out the gender: we are having a GIRL! I am so excited to be a mommy of two beautiful girls. And the anatomy ultrasound told us that everything is looking good so far; Baby Girl #2 is growing healthy and strong.
And in the midst of all the tough things about pregnancy, I am also so eternally grateful that I am able to bear children. I know many couples struggling with infertility or trying to navigate through the world of adoption. I truly have been so blessed and have much to be grateful for, especially as we celebrate Mother's Day tomorrow.
Alright, I'll end with a little snapshot of my time in California for Easter. Andrew, Grace, and I loved spending so much time with family.
We went to be beach and introduced Grace to sand. FYI: she was NOT a fan, but slowly Grammy helped her get used to it. Then we'd laugh as we watched Grace pick up the sand daintily with her two pincer fingers and slowly drop it over her foot.
We celebrated our sister-in-law's birthday with dinner and an Angel's game. This outing included the rental of a 15-passenger van so that the whole family could travel together.
We visited the La Brea Tar Pits dinosaur museum, swam in my parent's pool at night, and even made time for a Disneyland day.
But our favorite things to see during the trip were the sweet interactions between Grace and her cousins. Her older cousin, Cassidy, is pretty obsessed with our Gracie-girl. It is the cutest thing to see! And then Grace's younger cousins, Jepson and Taj, successfully taught her how to crawl. Yup, we sure are blessed with great family.
As of yesterday, the world knows our news: Grace is going to be a big sister! We are having a baby!
Honestly, I've been thinking of how I wanted to announce my pregnancy for weeks. I scoured through Pinterest ideas and thought I had the perfect idea. According to my calculations, I would be 10 weeks along when Grace was about 10 months old. I saw this really cute picture of a mom with her little child and a sign for each of them announcing that one was 10 months old while the other was 10 weeks. I thought it was cute and clever. But my perfect plan was foiled once I had my first doctor's appointment.
Andrew and I met at the hospital for the first ultrasound. I lay there staring at the screen above me, and when the image of Baby Peanut (as we have affectionately called him/her) popped up, I was shocked. It looked like a baby!
Now, you may be thinking to yourself, "Duh, Maichael! It IS a baby so of course it's not surprising if it looks like a baby." but I let me explain. On our first ultrasound with Grace, she looked like...well, an alien blob. Honestly, the only thing I could really see clearly in that first ultrasound was Grace's little thudding heartbeat. Other than that, I couldn't make out arms, hands, or legs. They printed us pictures, but I felt no connection to them. But this time, I could clearly see a baby.
The ultrasound technician completed her measurements and then announced, "You are well past 10 weeks. According to the measurements, you will be 15 weeks tomorrow."
According to my period tracking and baby apps, I was due on October 4th, but now I learned that baby was expected to arrive around September 4th. A whole month early!?
The nurse laughed and declared, "Wow, you practically skipped your first trimester!"
I quickly corrected her, "Oh no! I definitely felt the first trimester. I have been sick for months." This is a sad truth, one I am eagerly waiting to be done with.
I was at a writing conference once where they asked us to write our "One Little Word". This one word was supposed to encompass our personal focus for our year, a word that would remind us of our self-declared purpose and refocus us if ever we felt we were being bogged down by all the little voices telling us of the million things we need to accomplish.
I've seen a few friends report on their "One Little Word" in their personal lives, too, and I have been anxious to figure out a word for myself. Well, it took me a while, but after weeks of thinking it over I now feel that I have found my word for this year:
A few things have prompted me in this desire to be more mindful, but basically all of them revolve around one little thing: my cellphone
Last October I watched a church conference where we were challenged to go on a 10-day social media fast. I quickly accepted the challenge and deleted my Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Marco Polo apps from off my phone. The first few days were definitely tough and I was very much aware that I was missing something to fill my time. But after a little while, my body and mind stopped automatically searching for my social media and instead filled my days with other worthy activities.
I found more quality time with my daughter, outdoor play sessions with my puppy, and insightful conversations with my husband More productivity cleaning the house or tackling piles of laundry. More book reading and blogging. Basically, I realized the importance of not just filling my time so that I'm not bored, but filling my time with meaningful things that enhance my life socially, spiritually, mentally, or physically.
And then....the social media fast ended. I told myself I would remember the lessons. I told myself that I would not let myself get mindlessly addicted to my phone again. I told myself that I could hold strong to my priorities. And yet, I found myself slipping back into those habits where I mindlessly scroll through friend posts and always keep my phone by my side.
How many relationships have I missed out on because I was more interested on the not-so-interesting posts on my phone? How many important conversations have gone unspoken because I was so transfixed on the color-matching game on my smart device? I am not going to try to guess; instead, I'm making a change.
I feel really good about this one little word for 2019. I am going to work on being mindful. And just because I know that my one little word is still broad, I want to write down some specifics:
What is your one little word for 2019?
Andrew and Maichael
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