Friday, August 1, 2014

Search Completed!

We finally did it. After months, and months and months of talking about it, we finally took the plunge and traded my Tiny Car in for a Family Sized One. We talked about getting a smaller, 2-row cross over for a while, but once we realized that we would already be out of space anytime my parents were in town, which they are, frequently, and for long periods of time, we scratched that idea and went straight to the three-row category.

We were are concerned about gas mileage (Hello! I drove a 45mpg hybrid for 5 years!), so we crossed any vehicle that was over 6 cylinders, which limits your choices quite a bit. In the end, after test drives, reviews, and endless discussions, we narrowed it down to the Nissan Pathfinder, the Maxda CX9 and the Honda Pilot. We wanted to buy one that was mildly used, 3 years old or newer. While I had a slight preference for the Pathfinder, the Pilot was so much roomier (it's a 3 seat third row, with latches in all three seats while the other two are only 2-seat third rows). Also, it turned out that there were about three times the number of Pilots in the 2012-2013 range than there were Pathfinders or CX9s.

One of our friends (remember Juliet Cap? her)'s Dad is a salesperson at an Acura dealership, so I gave him a call, and told him our requirements. He found a 2012 Honda Pilot, with cloth seats and marked at about $2,000 below our price range. We headed to the dealership a few days later, liked the car, and after 4 hours of painless paperwork, drove home in our new [to us] car. Right now, with only the three of us in town, the car feels enormous, but I know that the second my Mom gets here in three short months (and staying for at least 2 months!) it will not feel that way.





We filled our tank for the first time, and it was pretty painful. We calculated 21 mpgs, which is exactly what it's rated for, but when you're used to paying $25.00 for a full tank every other week, it smarts. I am driving it for a week or so to get used to it, but then I'll be switching to the Civic since my commute is pretty long. But the car payment is significantly lower than it was on the Insight (better credit, awesome deal on the car), so financially it will somewhat balance out. I hope.

Monday, July 28, 2014

The name game

We picked a name for this little squirmy bundle that I am carrying. It's not a secret, we've been sharing it. My feeling is basically that if we've decided, there's no reason not to. If you haven't decided, and you share the names you're thinking about, then you're opening yourself up to feedback. You're basically telling people they are welcome to help you decide. We've decided to name our daughter Lucy. A simple, pretty, straightforward, unfussy name that I've liked for a long time, and absolutely loved paired with Mia. Mia & Lucy. The name itself, however, is not the point of my story.

The thing is, when you share the name you've picked, you aren't looking for feedback. You just aren't. If you really want to avoid all feedback, then you keep the name to yourself until your child is born and named. But that's just isn't how we are! Sharing the name is fun, and I've come to expect that the people I am sharing this piece of information with know the rules. If you aren't pregnant, and are talking hypothetically about baby names, then opine away. That is the time to share whether you like someone's choice. If someone is pregnant, and they're telling you about what names they like, your role is simple: if you like the name, enthuse away. If you don't, pretend you do. The rule doesn't change, no matter who the expecting parents are, no matter what your relationship is to them. You do not have a role in naming their child.

Of course, you can guess from the above that someone strayed from that rule. None other than my Father in Law, B's Dad. Of course, someone whose behavior can bring me quickly (very quickly) to anger. B isn't great at keeping in touch with his family. He speaks to his father monthly, at most. It's not that they aren't close, I think they are, but keeping in touch doesn't occur to them. B and his Dad had their monthly catch up yesterday, and B shared the name we had decided on.

FIL's reaction: "Nah, I don't like it." Very casual, very matter of fact. B's response: "Uh, OK. Well, that's what we decided, so that's what she'll be named..." FIL's response: "[Wife] doesn't like it, either." ... I am, sitting on the couch, just outside of FaceTime range SEETHING. Shaking my head, making SEETHING eyes at B, who is also, visibly upset. FIL tries to change the subject, ask what else is up. B informs him that it's time to make dinner (despite it being 4pm...), and they hang up.

WTF




Wednesday, July 23, 2014

21 Weeks!

18 Weeks


21 Weeks!
I haven't done an official pregnancy update in a while, so here goes this one. 21 weeks as of today, and generally feeling quite well. The nausea is no longer a symptom, thankfully, but the pregnancy allergies/constant nasal congestion has started. I'll take it over nausea anyday. My Doctor totally approved Zyrtek, so that has been helping greatly. The anatomy scan ultrasound revealed another girl, yes, but it also revealed a healthy baby, measuring on target, a closed cervix and a well-placed placenta. So, everything is looking great and while there are some pregnancy annoyances, I don't want to sound ungrateful or complain-y. This time around, going into the ultrasound, I was significantly more anxious about finding out that the baby was healthy then I was about actually finding out the sex. With Mia, I had a healthy pregnancy with little to no complications, and now we have a healthy, active daughter without any issues. Part of me feels like it is too much to ask  to do it all second time without something going wrong. 

I did injure my back doing absolutely nothing a couple of weeks ago, and had a couple of physical therapy sessions. Those helped, and my back feels totally fine now. It feels like my uterus is shifting up higher into my torso, and I'm starting to get out of breath doing the most benign things. Yes, things like going up the stairs will wind me, but also, I'll find myself breathing heavily after drinking water, shaving my legs (which-- any excuse not to do it, amirite?) and it's comical, but also pretty annoying. I think the shortness of breath thing has been causing some increased tiredness, too. I'll wake up still feeling sleepy, and every morning I have to convince myself to get ready and go to work. Every day this week, I've been tempted to take a sick day, but realize that I should probably save those for when I'm actually sick since I've got another 4 months to go here.

In more fun news, we picked a name! I'm hesitant to put it down on paper (public, web-based paper), but we've been using it without keeping it a secret. We went over a few names out loud while Mia was in the room, had her repeat some of them to see how they sounded out of her, and decided pretty quickly. A couple of days later, I asked Mia what we should call her little sister, she remembered the name we liked best, and it was done. 

This week/month, I think we're going to stop talking about getting a bigger car and actually do it. I'm getting so so so so tired of having discussion after discussion (B initiated, of course. He likes to go over specifics ad nauseam) over which car would suit our needs best, I just want to do it so that Autotrader.com can stop being a permanent tab on my browser. 

Monday, July 21, 2014

MILP #356, Week ending in July 20, 2014

I apologize for the somewhat late post, I 100% blame all the Apple products in my life, all of whom are back in working order on this Monday morning. Some of the MILPs have had rough weeks, so head over to those blogs and post some encouraging comments.

Alice becomes that soccer Mom. With a caveat.

But I do has a scary moment as a Mom, and while things turned out for the best, she still learns something.

CP has a really great week of bike rides, park playtime, and pregnant outfits. And then ends on a weepy, but happy note.

Magic Cookie celebrates her 10 years of blogging! Congrats. Oh, FYI, the kids are now Bill and Ted!

Grace suffers the loss of her coworker, and notices a big change in people's grieving in the age of social media.

Kate has a day of forwards and backwards regarding her living situation, and while not everything is resolved, the day closes in a better place than it started. 

Lag Liv's Lanman turns 7 and wins all the races!! Also, is it just me, or are those windows constantly getting cleaned? I'm not sure we've cleaned the outside of the windows on our house once... maybe we're supposed to be?

RG writes a beautiful summer recap post. She has a way of writing that makes me feel like I can peacefully picture everything.

Perspectives takes a [professional] break and enjoys adulthood.

Daisy, JD laments (without complaining!) the differences between vacations as a spouse and mom and those that did not involve so many darn lists.  

kderoll has... a WEEK. Maybe this is a recap of several weeks? I hope so, for her sake.


The weekly Mothers in the Legal Profession Roundup is hosted on a rotating basis at ButterflyfishGraceBJJ, Law, and Living, Mommy and the Sin City, Magic CookieThe Reluctant Grownup, and Perspectives from a Hard Boiled Egg.

If you would like your blog to be included in this Roundup, pleases email any of the above mentioned hostesses! Magic Cookie's got it next.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Toddler Sleep Habits, Volume Umpteen.

A few weeks before turning 3, Mia became a total rebel. 2 was a super fun age for us, and while she threw her fair share of tantrums, she wouldn't push her boundaries the way she does now. During the day, she'll be incredibly opinionated, mostly in demanding yet charming ways. Her opinions are strongest when it comes to food choices, cutlery choices (BIG FORK!), plate color, and clothing. It's not been completely easy to deal with, but as long as you give her a semblance of a choice, things go over relatively well (Mia, would you like to wear a skirt or shorts today?).

But at bedtime, the charm is gone. It became most apparent to us when my parents were around, and she would scream (oh yes, SCREAM) requests at us from the door of her room (blocked by a baby gate). "I NEED ANOTHER BOOK!" or "I NEED SOME WATER!" or "I NEED ANOTHER [STUFFED] ANIMAL!". Nothing earth shattering, but certainly a great delay tactic. At this point in the day, B and I just wants some G-D peace and quiet, so whatever she was requesting, within reason, she would get. My parents pointed out that during their visit last year (at this exact time of year), she went to bed with absolutely no complaints, and they were always so impressed with that. Not too many circumstances have changed in her bedtime routine -- she had free reign of the room though she was sleeping in a toddler bed, she got the same nighttime routine of bath, toothbrush, and book. She's still napping at daycare, but rarely does on the weekends, but that doesn't affect her nighttime transformation into a tazmanian devil.

Reenter sleep training. While she was a baby/toddler still in her crib, we used a simple method recommended to us by her pediatrician. Put her to bed, leave. If she cried, go back to her immediately, soothe, and exit. If she didn't calm down, return 10 minutes later, soothe, exit. If she didn't calm down then, return 20 minutes later, soothe, exit. So on and on with 10 minute increments added on. This worked for us, and by 2 she was going to bed without protest or delay.

This time, things are a bit different since she's not actually crying, and I assume, doesn't need the reassurance from us any more. She just doesn't want to go to bed yet. On Monday, we started the method recommended by AlphaMom, of walking her silently and without emotion  back to bed every time she gets up, without acknowledging any requests and with 100% consistency. We've done three nights, and while I'll admit the time between initially putting her to bed and her actually falling asleep (or at least, no longer protesting) has shortened considerably, her reaction to us following this method has taken us entirely by surprise.

My sweet girl turns into a bit of a devilish monster when her parents do not acknowledge her. The first night, she screamed. Not scream-cried, but screamed in anger. But, we did as we were instructed. No emotions, no acknowledgment. We are permitted to repeat a single phrase of our choosing (We went with "Stay in your bed"), and that is the only thing we'll say to hear when bringing her back to her bed.  She screamed, demanded a book, demanded water, kicked her blankets off. I mean, she was seriously awful and I was so glad nobody else was in the house to see this transformation. We must have gone up a total of 8 times and returned her to bed, and things were finally quiet upstairs about an hour after initial bedtime.

The second night, she got angry before we even said goodnight for the first time. She lost her story privileges, and was seriously mad about it right away. She hit me, several times. Nothing painful or violent, but clearly testing limits. The AlphaMom article didn't address what to do in this kind of situation, but I powered through and simply told her to stay in her bed. This time, we went up about 5 times, but it only took about 20 minutes for her to settle down. The next morning, she was seriously cheerful when she woke up, and I was secretly doing a victory dance -- I could at least tell myself that we were doing the right thing by forcing her to sleep, despite her obviously hating us for it.

Last night, night 3, she got mad, Mad, MAD as soon as I pulled out her pajamas. So, I figured we should stop showing emotion right away, and go to "Stay in your bed". She demanded another pair of pajamas, she demanded a different overnight pull up design, and she hit me again. Repeatedly. At first, without any kind of violence, but then, she hit me in the face, SO HARD that my glasses actually flew off my face. I nearly lost my ever loving mind. I grabbed her by the shoulders, put her in bed, told her she was NOT a sweet girl, and left. [PARENT FAIL] It was a seriously heartbreaking scene, and I think I will remember this night for a long time. She was so irrationally angry, and I was so angry and shaken up by her violent reaction that I didn't know what to do. She screamed, kicked her blankets off, continued demand different pajamas, etc. There was, at least, a small victory. She did not get out of bed. She may have been writhing around in anger, but at least she was doing it in her bed. About 10 minutes later, after I had calmed down, I heard her calm herself down. She had gotten out of bed, but she told us from the door of her room that she was ready to be a sweet girl now. So, I went up, wordlessly walked her back to bed. She repeated that she was sorry, and ready to be a sweet girl. I broke our own rules and told her that I was sorry, gave her a kiss and a hug, and she rolled over and let me tuck her in.

The time frames are certainly shortening, but the training has certainly intensified. If things don't go well tonight, I'm not sure I can keep this up much longer. I've never seen this side of her, it's so raw and disturbing to see your sweet little child flip a switch so drastically. I'm hoping we get things a bit more under control tonight and tomorrow. And if we don't, then I'm going to pull the plug on this method.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Normalcy

My parents were here for just over three weeks. While it was a really nice visit, it really seemed like a long time. We made all sorts of tentative plans while they were still in China, but everything seemed to crumble as they got here. My brother, who lives in Chicago, couldn't get any confirmation on his time-off schedule, my Dad ended up having to have a couple of medical tests that had to be spaced out throughout their trip. B's work schedule was all thrown off with the changes he went through, too. So, in the end, it seems like we just hung out at the house for 3 weeks, with a couple of fun activities thrown in.

While we didn't actually do anything out of the ordinary, having both of your parents living in your house for several weeks will throw a wrench in your daily routine. They drove me to work nearly every morning and picked me up from work every afternoon, so they could have use of the car during the day. Not having a car at your disposal during the day doesn't seem like it would be a big deal, because 80% of the time, I stay at my office. But not having the option of driving off on my own whenever necessary was awfully disconcerting! First world problems and all, but it was really nice to drive myself to work, park my car in the parking lot, and know that I can drive to outside counsel's office today [not that I'll need to...].

Overall, it was a really nice visit. Lots of downtime, nothing was rushed, and I think my Dad really had himself a nice vacation from his pretty demanding job [and my Mom had a nice vacation from living in China, with multiple trips to Target and the Outlets thrown in for good measure]. Judging from his vacation beard, it must have been relaxing.

Now that my parents are gone and with the the sex of Baby #2 revealed (girl! if you missed it), I'm starting to focus on what we need to do to prepare for her arrival. There are very few things, but some will require some time (like taming Mia's tazmanian devil bedtime habits -- more on that in another post, I'm sure). It is weighing on my mind a bit that I still have over 4 months to go with this pregnancy, and that seems like an awfully long time right now. I'll have to start planning a couple of things between now and then to break up the time. My Mom will be back in mid-November, just before my due date, and my Dad and brother are planning on coming back for Christmas this year. Lots to look forward to, but for now, returning to normalcy sounds pretty good to me too.


Friday, July 11, 2014

It's a...

I was absolutely convinced that I was having a boy. I mean, totally convinced. But, as I've disclaimed before... my instincts are always wrong. I have this theory that women pregnant with girls tend to look less pretty than usual, and women pregnant with boys look prettier than their normal selves during pregnancy. I thought I was looking pretty cute for the past couple of weeks, so I thought... boy. Since unborn sex theories are a whole lot of crap, it looks like mine fits in with the rest of them. 

I was majorly surprised when the ultrasound tech flashed to the area between the legs and I saw a whole lot of blank space. I had to ask her if she was sure. "I'm sure!" She said. Then, the doctor came in to verify the results, and sure enough, he was also quite sure it was a little girl. In that moment though, I pictured Mia with a sister and could not contain my excitement.

A small part of me is sad, of course. I think I'll have a few pangs of mourning for the son I thought I was having, but it's entirely useless to be sad about this kind of thing. The sadness I may feel at most likely never having a son is overshadowed by the absolute joy I feel at the prospect of Mia having a little sister. And so much of it doesn't mean anything - there's not much that I would have wanted to do with a son that I can't do with a daughter, and I'm constantly reminding B of this (his only sadness has to do with the whole "passing the family name" business, which... I don't relate much to -- which also, let's not stereotype too much here, there are about a million reasons a woman might name her children with her own family name...). 

Anyway! Overall, we are super super excited! We have the name narrowed down pretty well, I think. We had always discussed a second daughter's name, and while B refuses to commit because he wants to cover all other possibilities, every other possibility I throw out there, he doesn't like. Also, now that we know it's a girl, I am relieved not to have to buy a whole new wardrobe. Anyone care to contribute what I actually do need to buy for a second kid?