Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Dude. It's 8:25. Both kids are in bed. We had dinner at 6:00. Put away clean laundry. Eli earned back not one but two listening sticks. And now I'm on the couch, alone, eating a Reese's Whips and watching Glee. And not nursing. 'Tis awesome.

Dinner can definately use some fine-tuning, but I'm hopeful. This might actually work!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I owe the last eleven years to a ferret named Bianca

I read this article today and it reminded me of the guy I was dating when I met C. Towards the end of our courtship this guy acquired two ferrets, Bianca and George. He invited me over to meet the critters, who lived in an elaborate cage in his bedroom closet. I sat down on his bed, trying to be all cute and cool, rocking some very tight bell bottom jeans (it was 1999, in my defense) and my favorite knee-high boots. I was so excited to show him that I wasn't some silly girly-girl, that I could hang with his exotic, stinky pets. As soon as he opened the cage Bianca ran right up to me, sniffed my boot, and scurried up my pant leg. I repeat. The little rat imposter ran up my pants. And stopped at my knee. Where she got stuck. At this point we were both at a loss, since I sure as shit wasn't taking my pants off and he was opposed to my hitting her in the head until she backed out. It seriously took him about ten minutes to coax her out, during which time I had decided that I would not be going anywhere near Bianca and George ever again. Never ever ever.

A week later I met C, who didn't have a ferret. And the rest is history.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Need advice

I've been pretty much sucking at the whole work/life balance/flow/equilibrium/survival thing. I've been snappy with Eli, impatient with Sydney, and slacking with my clients. I'm doing my first load of laundry of the week tonight, and really it's only because I'm out of underwear. I haven't cooked a real dinner all week. My house is a wreck, and though I feel it's impact I can't bring myself to do anything about it. I'm frustrated because Sydney still isn't sleeping in her bed or through the night. Eli has been a terror, I'm sure because he's hungry for attention, but I feel totally strapped to my rocker, nursing from the time I get home until I drag both of us to bed. At work I've been forgetful, impatient, and annoyed. In short, I feel tapped.

I think one of the things that needs to happen is that I need to develop a more structured nighttime routine. I need predictability and downtime and I think the kids do too. I used to have it down pretty good with Eli, but with the addition of Syd I've lost my groove. So here's my thought.

Right now our routine is like this:
4:30 Home from work/daycare
6:00 (who are we kidding? It's usually 6:30/6:45) Dinner
7:00 Start getting Eli ready for bed.
7:30/8:00 Eli goes to bed (usually after being yelled at.)
8:00-10:00 Nurse Syd. Try to put her down. Crying. Repeat.

What I would like looks more like this:
4:30 Home from work/daycare
5:30 Dinner
7:00 Syd gets jammies and bottle/nurse. Bed.
7:30 Eli gets jammies/stories. Bed.
8:00 Mama gets some actual time to sit/fold laundry/Facebook/TV.

Due to C's schedule this has got to work as a one-woman show, though if he's home he often takes on Eli's bedtime routine. I'm worried about the Home/Dinner window, but I'm sure I'll figure something out. Other than that, it looks good, at least to my sleep deprived eyes.

Does this seem reasonable? Anyone with two+ want to chime in?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


I wrote a post late last night about lockdowns and my perceived benefit of having the unit shut down for a minute. Reading it this morning, I realized that what I had written, attempting to convey the feeling of relief that comes from being "off duty" for a little while, instead came across as callous and dismissive. That's not how I see myself, and not a message that I want to convey, so I deleted the post.

One of the things I struggle with in my job is public perception and public opinion of inmates. This unfortunately sometimes carries over to coworkers as well. There's this idea that BECAUSE they are serving sentences, that gives us as society a right to dismiss them, write them off, or treat them in such a way that suggests they are "less than" the rest of us. And that's something that drives me crazy, makes me cringe, and raises my hackles. The truth is, prison, the physical location, IS the punishment. Beyond that, attitudes and judgements are cruel and unnecessary. Yes, sometimes the women that I work with act out, and yes, they wear me out sometimes. Yes, some of them have done horrific, awful things. But that doesn't make them bad people. I don't want to give the impression that I "deal with" the women at work. I am so fortunate to have the opportunity to make a difference, to maybe be the first constant or to provide tools for the future, and I see that as a privilege. But sometimes, like in parenting, I get tired or distracted and I forget what an amazing chance I have, everyday, to make the world a little better.

I apologize if you read my last post and got a bad impression about inmates. Yes, I appreciated the break, but today, with it's chaos and drama and rush is a lot more fun.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Cousins (with parenthetical abuse)

Getting closer

My sister and niece's stay has been extended a bit and we have been having so much fun (thus the lack of posting). We took the kids to the zoo Saturday, then braved Forever 21 for some cheap bling (never again. Nightmare with strollers and a 4 year old on a Saturday. I am way too old for that, no matter how cheap the jewelry is.) Today we went to a Paint Your Own Pottery place because I'd bought the Groupon months ago, and I really wanted to get Syd's hand/foot print immortalized before she got much bigger. I thought it would be kind of cheesy, but I actually really liked it. Eli was a gem and Syd actually slept (!) in the stroller. The weather has been amazing (like "Oh! Is it still February? I thought it was May!") so we've been spending as much time as possible outside. So so lovely.

We've always lived away from family, so we haven't had much chance to let the kids just hang out with their cousins. It took a little while to warm up, but they are so much fun now. Syd mimics and follows my niece, who idolizes Eli. My house looks like a tornado hit, I've blown through the grocery budget twice-over, and no one is sleeping, but we are having a blast.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Look

My work wardrobe has a few "quirks." The first is that, even though Syd's already 9 months old and the weight is gone, I'm not sure how it all got so rearranged. So the old stuff doesn't fit the same anymore. Second, I have to carry a huge keyring and a pad alarm (like a garage door opener) "on my person" (read: not sitting on my desk) at all times. So I've been sticking with the same three or four pairs of pants with pockets and a selection of cardigans. And I. AM. BORED. The budget and a goal of losing more weight mean that I don't really want to spend a lot on new clothes so I've been shopping in my closet and trying to be more creative with what I have.

Today I wore a skirt (!), with no pockets (!), black turtleneck, and gray cardigan. And these shoes. These fabulous, shiny shoes that have been sitting in my closet, unworn, for over a year.

It was kind of a pain in the ass dealing with my keys and my alarm, but I felt Awesome. Isn't it amazing how a great outfit can make you feel ten feet tall?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Such weird kids

Sydney's new favorite food is banana peels. Seriously.

I know it's super weird, but these pictures crack me up. Who eats banana peels? She chooses them over the actual banana.

What to do?

I took a "Mental Health Day" today, and now I'm sitting here at a loss for what to do with myself. Neck and neck are 1) REALLY cleaning the house. Not company cleaning, but organized, more peaceful living cleaning and 2) busting out the sewing machine. On the other hand, the day is already almost half over, so I may end up just reading blogs all day. Which would be a shame (not so much the catching up, but spending the day on my bum). Any suggestions? The Crazy is creeping up, so I prefer not to spend money, but I do have some gift cards stashed away.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

A weekend at the coast

We spent the weekend at the coast with Coach, Auntie J, my sister, my niece, my brother, and my sister-in-law. It was the first time we've all been together since Syd was 6 weeks old. They're a lot busier now.
Syd loved the beach
So did Eli. He also was very brave this trip, which was so fun to watch.

This is her growling face. It means she's happy, but sounds like she's rabid.

My niece, who is adorable.

My only goal for the weekend was to get a picture of the three kids together.
This is the best one I got.
Not pictured: Me climbing into a dumpster for five bucks, my niece sneaking Syd contraband everytime we sat them next to each other, Eli and I staying up until midnight watching Toy Story 3, a huge Duggar-style van, and me dashing out the door with my babies when everyone but us came down with the stomach flu (because I'm nothing but uber-sympathetic).