Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Talk to Me – Early Risers

Dear Parents who love sleep as much as I do and have early risers, tell me….how do you keep your kid/s in their room in the morning?!!

Before moving to the big boy bed, Henry would wake up early but contently laid in his crib.  He would talk to his 15 “friends” that were in bed with him, watch his projector “movie”, or even find ways to reach his toys through the crib bars and bring toys in to his prison crib to play.  Honestly, he would be fine in there for 30+ minutes (emphasis on the +) which gave mom and dad time to wake up without a kid all up in our business sleep a little longer.

And then we moved him to a big boy bed and sleep seemed to cease as we know it.

Now, we get a wake up call anywhere from 5:00am – 6:00am (6:30 IF we are lucky) that goes something like this:


Hear rustling in his bed through the monitor.

Hear footsteps run to the door, open door, slam the door closed. (always slamming doors)

Hear bathroom door open, slam close and peeing.

Hear flushing and slamming the toilet seat closed. (We get it kid, you presence is known)

Hear rather loud footsteps RUN down the hall. (My son walks like Godzilla, I swear)

See blinding light flash in the room as terry and I reach for the sheets to protect our eyes from the light.

Hear “Time to get up!!!!” Usually followed by “I want to go downstairs and get pancakes!!!” Followed by “MOM!  No more sleeping!”

Sometimes he will crawl into bed with us (save your “awwwwww, that is sweet” until you read the rest) but bring the loudest, most obnoxious toys** ever to play with in our bed before we have had enough and just go downstairs.  Well played my son.  Well. Played. 

(And yes, that is actually our room with the snoopy stuffed animals and lava lamp.)

This week alone it has been this monkey that screams, a toy truck that has batteries dying so gets stuck on the same annoying 3 seconds of a song repeatedly when turned on, and pig bank with coins that sings.

UGH.

Now we had tried putting a child lock on the door knob on the inside when we first moved him to the bed.  That lasted all of THREE days before he figured out how to remove it.  We taped that thing on and he kept removing it.  Sure, it delayed the inevitable….but it just became a pain for us to keep putting back on.

Last night we moved a few door knobs and put one with a locking mechanism on backwards so we could lock it from the outside and he would be locked in.  This morning instead of hearing the footsteps we hear pounding on the door followed by “MOM, I HAVE TO PEE NOW!!!!”

Fail.

I have heard about and seen these.



Wake up clocks.  I guess I wonder if they really do work?

See, I have a very independent toddler.  The kind of toddler who knows he isn’t supposed to do something, but does it anyways.  Example, he had a screw (don’t judge) and was hammering it into an empty box because Terry was using a screw and Henry wanted to do the same.  Henry went to the wall and wanted to hammer it in the wall.  Of course we yell say “NO!  Do not hammer that into the wall.  You are not allowed to do that.”  To which he replies “Yeah, I know but it will be OK.  It is fun!”

Yeah, that is what we are working with here.

So, I am not sure if one of those clocks would keep him in the room or not.  Plus, if he has to pee, it won’t get him back in the bed once he is out.

So talk to me parents:  Do you lock your kids in the room?  Do you let them come into your room?  Do you just suck it up and get up at 5am with them?  Do they stay in their room when asked?  How do you handle the potty situation? 


Just curious!



**Please note that we do not buy the obnoxious toys and have noted those who give us obnoxious toys so we can return the favor.  We are not ungrateful for the toys....but come on parents, I think we agree that there are select toys out there that if you receive from someone, chances are they are trying to tell you they don't like you or you did something to piss them off!!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The BEST Rice Krispie Treat Recipe EVER

So to some, rice krispie treats may seem pretty simple, a basic thing to make.  Well not me.  Rice krispie treats can be bland, dry, too hard. But this should not be an issue for anyone who reads this blog…..so all three of you!!

I have perfected the rice krispie treat.

Yep.

It is a pretty big statement for sure, but I can say with confidence that this is the truth.

They are delicious.  Amazing really.  Some people out there may not be able to handle them, as they can be more decadent, but if you are a rice krispie treat fan….well you will never go back.

I figured all this out from trial and error and feel these are perfect.

The secrets: (full recipe below)

1. Use 6 tablespoons of butter, rather than 3 tablespoons 
(This may seem like way too much and I am not trying to be all Paula Dean with butter.  The first day you eat them, you may think they seem like there is too much butter on account that they glisten!  But they will taste amazing.  And on day 2 or 3, you will be happy that the extra butter is in there because the rice krispie treats will seem as fresh as day 1.)

2. Use the 16oz bag of marshmallows.  Yes, the ENTIRE bag. 
(you will thank me later.)

3. Use a smaller pan (I suggest something around a 13 x 7.5) rather than a 11 x 17 
(I think we can all agree a thicker rice krispie treat is better than a thin one any day….can I get a hell yes?!)

4. Add stuff to your rice krispie treats, plain treats are out.  Ideas below.

5. Use a nonstick baking spray (the one specifically for baking) on the bottom of the pan, and also on the metal spoon you will use to press the treats down into the pan.

And the biggest secret of all:

6. Only melt ¾ of the 16 oz bag of marshmallow, save the rest to MIX in after the rice krispies have been mixed together.  This gives you semi-melted chunks of marshmallow in your rice krispie treat!

BOOM.

Your mind should have been blown.

And with that, I would suggest adding toppings or other “mix ins”!

In this case we used blue sprinkles because I made them for a frozen movie night!!


But I have made others, here are some:
(Note: if they have a crust, I do use a larger 11 x 17 pan as otherwise they are almost too big!)

- Sweet and Salty: I made a crushed pretzel crust* and baked that for 6-10 minutes at 400 until set and let cool and then add the rice krispies on top of that.  Then I drizzled melted chocolate over top. I mean, come on.

- Smores: Graham cracker crust, rice krispie treats and chocolate on top. *Or a layer of fudge that has harden inbetween the graham cracker crust and rice krispie treat.

- The Turtle: Drizzled Carmel, chocolate and then nuts on top of the rice krispie treat.

- Oreos – crush and mix in oreos into the rice krispies

- Your favs – Just mix in or add on top you and your kids favorites!  Sprinkles, mini (any candy), chocolate chips….whatever!

If you try this, let me know what you think! 


Recipe

6 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
16 oz bag mini-marshmallows
6 cups of Rice Krispies
13 x 7.5 (ish) size pan
Non-stick Baking Spray
Whatever Mix In’s you want!

- Melt 6 tablespoons of butter (in chunks) in a microwave safe container with ¾ of the marshmallows.  (melt in 30 second intervals, stirring in between each interval so not to over cook everything.)


- Once melted, mix in all the rice krispies.  Stir and coat thoroughly and work quickly. (rice krispies covered with a perfect marshmallow blanket!)

- While still warm, stir in the remainder of the marshmallows. (I had to work fast here, so no time for more pictures!)

- Use the baking spray to spray the bottom of the pan.

- Put the rice krispie treats into the pan.

- Spray the back of a large metal spoon with cooking spray and push firmly down the treats until they are nice and firm. (you could use plastic wrap too, but we never seem to have that.)

- Don’t forget your toppings!!

- Let sit out for a bit to come together, then enjoy!

 You are welcome.


*Pretzel Crust:
- 1 ½ C. crumbled pretzels
- 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

- 2 Tbsp. packed dark brown sugar
- Bake at 400 for 6-10 minutes

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

I am a Member of the National Consumer Panel….My Purchasing Data Will Shape the Consumer Future!!!!

Ok, perhaps “shaping the consumer future” is a bit dramatic…..but I am giving my input!

So a few months ago I was looking for ways to get free stuff and earn a little extra “fun’ money, as we have none of that, so I joined a few different opinion type groups.  Most, like “Opinion Outpost” and “ShadowShopper” are easy to get in to and you can start right away.  But The National Consumer Panel took a little more time to be a part of.

So what is the NCP, you ask?

Well…..

The National Consumer Panel is an operational joint venture between the two leading longitudinal consumer insights providers in the United States – IRi and Nielsen.  By recruiting, incenting, and equipping a representative sample of U.S. consumers with handheld scanning devices as well as alternative methods of data collection, the National Consumer Panel provides the highest quality, actionable consumer data to support the needs of both IRi and Nielsen. This consumer data is the raw material that powers the insights and solutions that IRi and Nielsen individually delivers to their respective clients.  

That sounds fun!!  I buy things and I love to scan things….I would be perfect.  So I filled out a survey to become a part of the NCP and waited.  Then a month later I filled out another survey for them and waited.  Then I had another survey to fill out for them to send me my stuff if selected.  A few weeks ago the packaged arrived….I was in!!!


The way it works is I get this scanner and we have to scan in EVERY purchase we make.  Gas, food, clothes, coffee, etc.  To be honest, I am still getting use to scanning every minuscule purchase in.  For each purchase you say who in the household shopped, whether discounts were used, where you shopped, then you scan the barcode and entry quantity.  (if there isn’t a barcode, they have a handy book with barcodes!) 


When you are done you enter the total spent and how you paid.  Then at least once a week or more you transmit the data to the NCP.  Then within a couple days some points appear in your account!!  You get points for weekly transmissions, if you transmit every week during the month, and for survey’s you complete.  You can then use those points for gifts or gift cards.  I have yet to make enough points to get that far, but looking forward to making even a little money for Christmas, by spending no more than normal and doing nothing more tracking my purchases!!

It can be a little time consuming because I don’t carry the scanner with me so I have to write down little things I purchase.  But for grocery trips I just lay out all the groceries, scan everything in, enter my totals, and put things away.  I usually do multiple small trips during the month at different stores to get sales; like Aldi’s once a month to stock up on canned goods, Walmart for weekly basics, Kroger when I have good coupons, and the meat market for all our meat. So scanning this stuff in take no more than 10 minutes each trip plus all those stores are on the list of stores!!  Easy.




I am getting nothing from this post, I just thought it was pretty cool and wanted to share!!

For more information or to join, click HERE.



Side note: A year ago we got selected to be a part of the Neilson TV survey for a week and record what we watch and we got $50!!!  I like to think what we watch shapes the future for TV programming everywhere!  Too dramatic again?!  Eh….

Monday, June 16, 2014

From The Mouth of Babes - Part 2

My son is a chatter box.  This is awesome and hilarious to me as he was such a late talker.  But now, the boy won’t shut up!!  (Which I actually do love)  Plus he says big words, or at least tries to say big words.  He is always surprising us and saying things you wouldn’t think a 2 ½ year old would say!  (Note to self: be careful what you say)


I wrote a post a few months back, HERE, about what he is saying and I am doing it again.  I LOVE keeping track of this stuff because it can be so easily forgotten. 

Some of my favorite things he says right now (Henry is 2 ½).

You not a child. 
“Mom, you no have this toy….you not a child.”

I not a child.
If he doesn’t want to do something you ask, like clean up toys.  “Mom, I can not do XYZ.  I not a child.”

I gots a lot of jobs to do. 
Me: “Henry, help pick up your toys.”
H: “I can’t mom, I gots a lot of jobs to do.”

(Yes, he is a busy child and always looking for ways out of his chores)

Yeah but. OR Ok but.
“Yeah but, I can’t eat that.”  “OK  but, I can’t do that.” “Yeah but, I want to do this.” 

OK, Mom.
Me: “Henry stop climbing on that”
H: “Ok, but no ask me to stop climbing. OK mom.”

Along with this one is…

You no touch this, OK?
Puts down ANYTHING “Mom, you no touch this, Ok?”

Be reasonable.
“Mom, be reasonable.”
(enough said)

Oh Man.
It is not so much the context, but rather how he says it. “Oooooh, maaaaan.”

No, I Heny.
Me: “Henry, you are silly.”
H: “I no silly, I Heny.”


Please. Please. Please. Or Hi. Hi. Hi.
He saw this on some cartoons and so he has to say those things three times.

Huh? What?
THE. BEST. Part of him saying this is the face he makes.    He will ask a question and say “huh” or “what” and snarl his lip a bit and ask a question.  It is super cute!!



What you say?!
Anytime you say something Henry doesn’t understand he says “what you say or why you say that?” with the look mentioned above.

He also thinks it is hilarious to call us Jenn and Terry instead of Mom and Dad. Sigh.

That’s weeeird.

Terry has a hard time understanding Henry.  Henry will keep trying to tell Terry what he is saying before he finally looks at me, with this frustrated face and says “MOM, daddy no get my words, tell daddy what I say.”  I am the translator around the house.

If one of us is getting mad or frustrated:
“Mommy...don't worry. It be OK. Sorry you are frustrated.” Sweet boy. 
(Thank you Daniel Tiger for teaching emotions!)

OR, sometimes he just looks at us and says….

“Hey mom (or dad), just chill.”

So Henry and I were talking about my sister, her boyfriend and their cat (Charlie) before bed and the following conversation happened:

H: why Charlie eat breafkest? (Breakfast)
Me: because he is hungry
H: but why
Me: because he runs around a lot and it makes him hungry
H: but why
Me: for the same reasons daddy and I feed you, Kristen and Josh feed Charlie.
H: yeah but......they no feed Charlie. This no charity.
Think he heard something about charity from caillou, and sure he doesn't know what it means, but hilarious nevertheless!!

He refers to his feet as Stinky Piggies.

When he passes gas we call it “toots”.  Well then I call Henry “Toots Mcgoots”.  He started saying that any time some farts.  Adorable.

Bitch.  Yeah, Terry and I are working on our swearing infront of him.  OOPS.

Along with what he is saying, there are also things I never thought I would say or talk about or do until I had a kid.

Don’t pull your penis like that!

H: “Mommy, my penis itches.”
Me: “Then scratch it.”
H: “No, you scratch it!!”
Me: “Uh, no one scratches your penis but you!!”

Don’t put your finger in your butt!!

Stop rubbing the peaches on your face and eat them.

Don’t sit on Godzilla!

Me: “Henry, don’t drink that bath water, you just peed in it!!” 
H: “Ok but, it is really really deissious!” (delicious)

Point your penis down!!!  (As I grab for it and push it down while he is peeing ALL over the toilet seat.)

Poop.  Fart. Penis.  I am glad I have the humor of a 14 year old boy because when you have a boy…..you have to be prepared for it all!!!




*TwopretzelsI promise I am not trying to copy you, I love writing these down too because they are hilarious!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Time and Loss.

Time is a funny thing.  You always think you will have more of it.  Well, at least I do.

Maybe it is wanting more time during the day to get your work done or spend with your family.

Or perhaps more time to get your chores/errands done.

Maybe more time on the weekends to do all the things that need done vs. those things you want to do.

Or more time to see those that you care about the most.

I am always looking for more time.  But that is what tomorrows are for, right?!  That is what I have always said.  Oh, I didn’t get to XYZ today….I will do it tomorrow…or next week….or next month….

But again, time is a funny thing and sometimes, completely out of the blue when you think there is plenty of time left, the reality smacks you right in the face that there is just no more time left.

I write this post for myself as a memory.  A reminder of just how precious time is.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Much Needed Weekend!!

 Oh, I am SO bad about blogging!!!!  Please don’t give up on me and my blog; I am not giving up on blogging just yet….


This past weekend was SO busy and awesome and I feel my son grew up in one weekend*!!  (Ok, perhaps a bit dramatic with the last one as he is technically only a couple days older, but still….exciting things occurred) 

It was so nice to have such a great weekend.

The past 6 months have sorta sucked between Henry and hisseizures and we have been sick and fighting sickness ALL. THE. TIME.  Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Valentines Day….Henry was sick ALL those holidays.  There have been multiple ER visits from October thru December 31st.  The sicknesses we ALL have had in between the holidays.  Henry’s seizures and the diagnosis and let’s not forget that this has been THE worst and longest winter I ever remember and we have been stuck inside.  To say we have been cranky and tired of being cooped up is a HUGE understatement.

So what does this have to do with being busy this past weekend, well my point is we got out of the house did stuff and we were NOT SICK.

Henry had been sick the weekend before when we celebrated my sister and my birthdays (and the weekend before that, of course) so I thought the odds were in my favor that he would NOT be sick this past weekend.  

Then I heard rumors that it was suppose to be gorgeous outside.  Like, PERFECT weather.

Challenge accepted.

So I took action and I planned. 

I didn’t get my hopes up too much and played all casual, “oh yeah, we “may” do a couple things this weekend”.  (Something you should know about me, I am VERY superstitious.  So I thought if I didn’t actually speak too much about the weekend the cosmos would not know what I had planned.  Yeah, I am weird like that.)

Anywho, the weekend was to go like this:

1. Friday Evening – Goodbye crib and hello new big boy car bed!
2. Saturday – Trip to the Zoo
3. Sunday – First Hockey Game

And folks…..it happened. 

IT ALL HAPPENED. 

You guys, it was such a great weekend.  For most, maybe this is a normal weekend, but not for us.  And definitely not for us the past 6 months.  Sure, there were some snags like Henry running away from me at the Zoo, and him falling asleep on the 25 minute car ride home and then NOT taking a nap and hitting me because I was trying to make him nap, or him waking up at 4am Sunday morning and not going back to sleep.  But hey, it could be worse…..it HAS been worse.

The Bed.

We tried the transition to a big boy bed before Henry was even two.  It did not work.  He was way too young for the independence and actually loved his crib too much.  But we knew it was time now as he is too big for such a small bed.  We have a convertible crib, but again…our child is big and ALL over the place when he sleeps.  So we decided that we should get him something special and that he can grow into.  So we opted for a toddler to twin car bed!!  HERE  We used his toddler mattress and when he gets older we will get a twin mattress.  We also hoped that having a fun bed would make him stay IN the bed.

Verdict: the boy LOVES it.  When we tucked him in the first night he looked at terry and said “Thank you”.  Terry asked him for what and he said “Thank you for putting together my car bed”.  Sigh.  You are welcome sweet boy.  And note, there are no stickers on it yet as he pulls stickers off everything he owns!

Of course he loves to jump!




Yes, he does sleep with all those stuffed animals.


Night one went off without a hitch, plus he actually slept in** Saturday morning until 7:45am!!  Nights 2 and 3 he got up really early and was crying.  But, perhaps just because things were a bit different.  But the past two nights have been great and he now just wants to go in his room and play in his bed.

Makes me so happy to see him so happy!

Zoo.

Terry was working, but I decided to take Henry to the Zoo.  He HAD to have a wagon and best $10 spent as I don’t want to fight a 39lb, 39” toddler who refuses to walk anymore.  Plus, he had a pretty awesome set-up!  Popcorn, drink, being pulled around.  Ahhhh, the toddler life.  The day was great and the weather really was perfect.  We went early, right after they opened and got  a couple good hours in.  And except for him seeing something and running off (stomach sinks) and then the fact that he napped on the way home and refused to nap when we got home, it was a perfect day.


Life. Is. Good.



Hockey.

We had tickets from the firm I work at for the Walleye Hockey game Sunday.  We were not sure if Henry was old enough, but he loves hockey and always talks about it so we gave it a try.  Overall he really loved it!  He kept saying “my turn now” and did get a little upset until we gave him some popcorn to distract and calm him.  (yes, more popcorn…we are not above using food to keep him calm)   I do think it got to be a little loud for him, it was loud for me!  I think he also started getting bored.  We stayed about 45 minutes and then headed off.  But he kept talking about it, which is how we know he loved it!  And now I think we are starting hockey next fall…..

That smile!!!!  Pure excitement
(I teared up seeing how excited he was.  no really.)



HUGS!  Though he said he met big bird, heehee :-)
(He got walleye stickers!!)


YAY for great weekends!  I think mentally we all needed a weekend like this. 



*On a side note: Henry takes showers now.  Yep, on top of an already exciting weekend Henry decided he wanted to take a shower with me, now it is his favorite thing.  Sigh….kids grow up so fast!! :-)

**Since when is sleeping until 7:45am considering “sleeping in”.  UGH.  LAME!!!


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Lenten Sabotage!!!

So is anyone giving up or doing something for lent this year? 

Is anyone’s significant other NOT giving anything up and trying to sabotage YOUR Lenten promise?!?!

So I have not done the lent thing in a few years, but this year I knew I wanted to give something up and exactly what that something would be.

Sweets.  {GASP}

Yep, I wanted to give up sweets for Lent this year.

Why, you ask?!  Have you really lost your mind?!?!

Yes, I have lost my mind but that is besides the point.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Diagnosis.

(I am writing this down also for my records)


So I talked about the fact that Henry has been having seizures HERE.  After the first of the year we got to talk to a Neurologist about the seizures and what steps to take.

Then we waited.

The end of February Henry had an EEG.  (What is an EEG’s HERE





At the appointment Henry did AMAZING!  Which was surprising and awesome!  I was SO proud of our little man.  It is good that he laid still for the hour because it yields more accurate results.

Then we waited more.


Sunday, March 09, 2014

HDH – 2 ½ Years Old


My son is now TWO AND A HALF?!?!

Did I just type that correctly?!  

WOW.

JUST WOW.

I mean, just LOOK at him....where has the time gone?  When did he start looking so old?!?!



I don’t know why this keeps shocking me.  Ever since he turned two, the realization of how old he is keeps hitting me (as does my son during his tantrums).  I think it is more so HOW he is acting as opposed to his actual age that floors me.  That is why when he turned one, it was not that big of a deal, he was still this little man who needed me for so much and still acted like a baby of sorts. 

But two.  Not so much.

I should have known two would be harder and different considering on his second birthday he got on his NEW tricycle my parents got him and road into the sunset like he had been doing this forever. 

UH, WHEN DID YOU LEARN TO RIDE A BIKE?!?!  

What, you turn two and now you are all grown up?!

Sigh.

He was also a late(er) talker, but it was like when he turned two he decided he had a LOT to say and now, he talks ALL. THE. TIME. and repeats everything (oops). He has ideas and his own thoughts and is imagining and playing make believe and sings and is funny and…well it is awesome!! But with that he is also more grown up.

Oh, and how do I know he has his own ideas, you ask?  Well he will put his fist under his chin, and with a pretty intense thinking face on says “hmmmmmm. OH, I got an idea!!! I know, we can…..”  and proceeds to his idea.  He has LOTS of ideas :-)


He also says “Oh, I know what to do!”  OR  “Oh, I forgot!”  (These are also stall tactics before bed and if we want him to pick up toys.  He will say he “Oh, I forgot” something and then go over and move something like a toy a foot to the right or goes and kisses and hugs EVERY item in his room.  No, I mean EVERY item.  The wall (hug, kiss, I yub you wall) and that pattern continues for a clothes basket, his stuffed animals, a bottle of lotion….you get the idea.  This can go on for awhile if we don’t stop it.

I wish I could just have a camera on him all day to record all the things he says and does because it is pretty great.  Of course he would probably look at that camera and say “NO CHEESE ME!!!” and get mad….so maybe hidden cameras!

So what else is new with Henry.......


Friday, February 14, 2014

When It Just Becomes Too Much Then It Is Time To Ask For Help.

I am sharing this post because I need to be accountable for my actions and recognize that the way I act and feel not only affects me, but my family and work and others around me.  This has been going on for awhile now, but the past few months have been a constant struggle for me.  It isn't every minute of every day, no I have many happy moments....but the stress is hard for me to deal with.


It didn’t take me long into the New Year to lose the award for “Most Patient Mother of the Year”.  I mean, December 30th AND 31st we were in different ER’s and we rang in the New Year with not only us sick, but one extremely sick child (temps up to 104 sick).  Though June Cleaver would have taken it all in stride, this mom didn’t stand a chance to win. 

We finally started feeling better early January and then of course the end of January we ALL came down with the sickness again.  So on top of being sick 75% of the time since the end of October, there is stress as we wait for Henry’s EEG appointment, financial stress, work stress, home stress, my yearly January/February winter blues, independent toddler trying to find his way in this world stress, and everything else that just compiles until…

…BOOM…

…You scream (I mean scream) at your kid because you are trying to make the bed you just made a few hours before (because twice now he has coughed and puked on the clean sheets) and while you are trying to maneuver a crib mattress your kid starts grabbing the mattress and putting toys on the springs.  Nothing horrible, no.  But in THAT moment it was too much.  And you yell.  A real yell.  A yell that hurts your throat and actually makes you take a step back and catches you off guard because you have no idea where it came from.  A yell that after you put your kid down for a nap makes you cry with guilt and frustration.

Or perhaps it is the time you just breakdown because your child will not listen to any direction you give what-so-ever.  I mean after trying to convince your child to pick up the 50+ flashcards he threw all over the kitchen and then just left them there to go play with other toys you lose it because it is a constant battle and fight.  And after he screams and cries and hits he then pees all over the place.

That was it.  That was the thing that set me off.  After not listening, dumping juice on the floor, laying sideways in his timeout chair, me nearly burning dinner, the constant back and forth, the tears, the screaming, the hitting….I reached my limit when he stood there screaming and peeing.

But most parents would have reached their limit, that is normal...but I went further. I yelled and screamed and hit the cabinet door.  (ugh….I never want him to see me hit things, nor do I want to YELL at him)  But it happened. 

Sigh. 

Moments later terry walked in and I just lost it.  Yep, lucky man.  He didn’t even have his coat off when I started yelling and crying about what happened.  My frustrations.  The fact that I have NO IDEA how to discipline him.  The fact that the past few months I have been losing my cool and becoming SO ANGRY so easily.

I feel I yell and say “NO” more than I say “yes” and ENJOY my time with my family. It wears on you.  It has been like this for months and I am just exhausted.  I don’t want to say NO all the time.  I don’t want to always yell.  I don’t want to repeat myself 20 times trying to get a 2 year old to listen to me or pay attention.  I want to enjoy this time because I know it is short lived.  I want to make sure I mold Henry, through proper love and discipline and not the back and forth of love and screaming.  I feel I am focused on the wrong thing.  The things being done wrong instead of right.  Basically, I have turned into a real pessimist the past few months.  I am always thinking worst case scenario and constantly second guessing EVERY decision I make with him for fear it is the wrong one and because of this just get easily frustrated with not just him, but myself.  Mostly myself.  And I am becoming absolutely ridiculous with anything that involves Henry.

I mean a week ago Henry got water on his shirt right before bed after I got him all ready and I had to change him into a slightly warmer shirt to which made me mad as he already had an elevated temp to which I said: “Great, now we have to change his freakn clothes AGAIN!  And now we are putting him in a warm shirt, that other shirt was perfect.  How about we just put him in a freakn parka!!!”  Yes, I really said that.  Terry of course rolled his eyes and let me throw a tantrum like, well my two year old.  Only difference is I didn’t go all limp and throw myself to the floor….though had something else gone “wrong” I may have.  Of course, my comment made me feel like a total jackass later after I calmed down. But the point is…THAT IS ME.  That is how I am right now.  I over-react. I am ridiculous.  I have never been this bad until the last few months.

That same evening as the ridiculous parka comment, Henry must have known I was having a rough night because that night he didn't ask after his story to go to his bed.  He ALWAYS asks to go to his bed.  Instead he asked for a hug. Sigh.  I put him up on my shoulder and held him to me as close as I could and we hugged and just cuddled.  I held him SO incredibly tight and he was squeezing and hugging me and he fell asleep in my arms.  I just sat and rocked him after he fell asleep for another 15 minutes, crying and crying and soaking in that moment….not want to letting go.  Even through it all he still loves me and wants to be with me….I don’t even want to be with me because I am acting a fool.  But HE does.

I do get so frustrated with Henry, but mostly I get mad at myself because I really don’t know how to discipline him and get him to listen to me and I don't how to control my emotions in those frustrating moments.  And when I get stressed I breakdown and go from 0 to 11 in no time at all.  When I have to deal with confrontation, yes even with a two year old, I lose it.  I am not good with that stuff and my temper ALWAYS gets the best of me.  I have always been like this, but could walk away.  Take some time for myself.  Get better.  I can’t walk away now.  And I hate it.  I HATE that I get mad and lose my cool infront of Henry.  I hate that I handle some situations poorly.  I really hate that I cannot figure how to get my own son to listen to me. I HATE that I don’t feel like ME at all.  I HATE that I am so sad one minute, angry the next and happy the next.  I REALLY HATE that I get so worked up and emotional that I feel this urge to hit a wall or cabinet door….and that I have.

I am a mess.

Since having Henry there as been a lot of stress with how Terry and I had to keep a schedule and all the other stresses that come with him working part-time in the evenings. And then for the past 6 months there has been extra stress with Henry's health. It just keeps building and building.  And then the past few weeks have been extremely hard.  Some of my worst and most emotional weeks ever.   And to be honest, I don’t think I have been completely myself for some time now.  It is up and down and I have always just assumed it is part of having a kid.  But I think I am reaching a breaking point that I can no longer handle on my own.

I need to change. 

After the above and other meltdowns the past couple weeks I started thinking about things.  Two things in particular:

1.) How can I (we) communicate better with Henry so he listens and I don’t have to say NO so much?
2) What can I do to practice patience and remain calm?

I have found some things online the past couple weeks that we are trying to communicate better with Henry and I am going to continue trying for BOTH Henry and I to communicate with each other better.  I will post them and the results soon as this post has already become way too lengthy….sorry. 

But for me, I think I am at the point where I can no longer “try” to handle this on my own.  I need to talk to someone.  I don’t like the idea of talking to someone because I hate opening up to strangers about my feelings.  But if multiple people who care about you are telling you this, and have been telling you for a long time, then perhaps you need to listen if you want to change. 

I WANT to change. 

I can’t continue to be like this for Henry, Terry, My Family, work…MYSELF.

It is just a lot sometimes.  No one and I mean NO ONE can push you as much as your child.  I mean, he already knows and is continuing to learn what triggers and pushes us.  If this was anyone else, you wouldn’t get so emotional about them.  But this is your child.  Someone you love more than any words could ever express.  You love them to the deepest part of your being and so much so that it hurts.  They are a part of you and because of that I have to recognize that if I am hurting inside, then perhaps that he sees and feels that too and I need to get help.

Sigh.

……