Archer and I ventured down behind our house to look for some balls that I knew had been tossed off the deck over the summer. Little did I know how much else wed find besides balls! Im sure this is just a fraction of whats down there. But well send daddy next time. I came out with a really slimy slug stuck to me :(
Tuesday before Thanksgiving + 2nd Birthday, and we are hosting 7 adults and 3 kids. Lots to do!! Im getting into Martha Stewart mode. Archer was really great today! It did take me an hour to get him to nap, but he fell asleep and woke up happy. After he ate the last banana, I convinced him we just had to go to the grocery store to buy more. He totally fell for it. But he totally called me on our pre-grocery stop at Bed, Bath, and Beyond! They didnt have any bananas. At the grocery, he was so patient, just observing the holiday rush from the cart. The free bread and blue cheese samples helped too! (Who ever heard of a kid who likes Blue cheese??). Man is he a charmer too! No one can pass by without smiling at him.
Greg and I tried something new at bed time. We both sat with him. Im hoping some of Gregs mojo will rub off on me. Seems to be working (knock on wood). Still probably will call the sleep coach this weekend since hes waking up several times at night. Greg bought a cot and will sleep in there with him, but its too hard for me in my condition. Anyway, I cant sleep in there with a baby and Greg cant do that forever. But I feel like we might be making some progress :).
Book idea addition: shopping solo with a toddler. As a working Mom, I never really tried shopping alone with A. We either all went as a family or one of us stayed with A at home and the other went out (because it was usually the weekend). Im so used to just making a list and getting stuff done, but operating on toddler time is a whole new dimension! This chapter could just be a bunch of tips from other SAHMs or SAHDs on how to keep your kids engaged in the necessary errands. My tip: limit how many places you are going, keep each store visit as brief as possible, and offer a carrot (or banana). Oh, and use the seatbelt in the carts – yes for protection, but its an excellent restraint devices for climbers. Although I suppose its only a matter of time before A figures out how to unlatch it! Hes working on that skill now.
Well – this morning was good. We got up and dressed relatively quickly and then put together a little package for Greg. Something he needed for class, but had left behind. We looked for buses and trucks on the way to FedEx. Archer is very observant and often saw them before I did. Then he charmed everyone in the FedEx store; he kept announcing that he needed to run and then ran in circles around the posts demarcating where the line should go. Luckily, it wasn’t too busy and it was full of women who melted at his smile and eyebrow wiggle.
Then we went to AT&T to get a new sim card for my iPad. I almost died when the guy said it would be a 20 minute wait. But we stuck it out, running around outside until we got cold, then playing with the animal puzzles on my iPad. He’s gotten amazingly good at it. I’ll put a video up of him doing an interactive puzzle, once I figure out how to do that with WordPress.
The first two errands took longer than i thought, and I resisted the temptation to stop at Michael’s to pick up supplies for a little art project so that we could get home in time for lunch and nap. Still, Archer refused to nap and the afternoon spiraled downhill with lots of tantrums caused by frustration. That he only refuses to nap for me is a huge source of my own frustration. Greg says he’s challenging me. I just have to hope this is a transition phase.
I had an idea to keep me levelheaded during this transition time. I’m going to write a book titled, “So you quit your job to be a SAHM. Now what?”. So far I have a couple of chapter ideas and a few kernels of ideas to flesh out.
- Why I did it
- Things to consider before making your decision
- Are you able to chase an active toddler around? If you had a desk job, consider implementing an exercise plan several months in advance. Are you 8 months pregnant and waddling? That might not be the best time.
- To wean or not to wean off of day care.
- Is your child just entering a challenging phase, like the terrible twos? Be prepared for the issues that you’ll face on Day 1, because you won’t have time to figure out how to deal with them in the moment.
- The science of tantrums and the art of dealing with them. (neuroscience might finally pay off!)
- Plan your days before you are a SAHM. Winging it might not work.
- Finding other SAHMs that are going through the same thing. Being a weekend parent versus a full time parent – not the same thing, especially if you all of a sudden become the full time parent of an older child. Seems different than if you’ve been with them from Day 1.
I dunno. Seems like there could be a market for people struggling with the decision and then the reality of it if they make the jump.
Technically my second day of being “unemployed”, but my first full day at home with Archer. He went to school yesterday.
Score: Mom 1, Archer 1. It was a little rough especially since he refused to nap, but I got him to sleep by 7:30pm, giving me time to re-arm myself for tomorrow. I figure this is our transition phase. I’m hoping we figure each other out pretty quickly – especially given that pesky January deadline.
The day started with him climbing into his high chair by himself and calling me to come feed him breakfast! It was one of those things you have to laugh at, while also planning to hide the high chair. But then he threw an absolute fit when I cut his banana up for him. I just had to let him get over that – it was our last banana. So – learning how to deal with toddler tantrums.
After breakfast, I told him we were going to get dressed and go to the park with Prada. He went straight for his boots. Who needs street clothes?
We did eventually make it, though it felt like a three ring circus trying to get there: Toddler running that way, dog going the other… At least he was getting his energy out. And we remembered to bring a towel to dry everything off.
Then we took Prada home and headed straight for story time at Kidsquest. I can tell that place is going to become a regular hangout (thank you Jami and Loren). Mommy lesson #2: arrive earlier than story time to allow for playing with stuff; we got distracted by the train set on the way into the classroom. Archer just observed story time from the comfort of my [diminishing] lap. I hope he eventually starts to venture out into the gang of toddlers interacting with the teacher (today they were all pretending to be dinosaurs – it was very cute). On the way out, I let him play in the water exhibit, and we watched pennies spiral down a big funnel. He’s a very curious little man.
This is where he scores for the day! We came home and had lunch, but I missed his optimal nap window, and the rest of the day was fairly contentious. He was just super short tempered and easily frustrated until we started watching music videos: Casper Babypants, lots of animal sound songs, some alphabet songs. He was absolutely mesmerized. I had to pull him away for dinner.
But I got him in bed early and he passed out almost immediately, giving me some time to clean up, reflect on the day, and record my first day as a stay at home mom. Still working on feeling competent and in control in my new position, but off to a respectable start I hope!