Friday, May 31, 2013

2.5 years

It's been way too long! Who do I blame? Oliver, for growing so fast I can't keep up with all the changes? Myself, for scheduling pretty full weekends? or both.

Oli's passed the 2.5 year mark and he's just growing by leaps and bounds. His vocabulary is awesome, he speaks in full sentences and almost correct grammar. Yesterday, we were returning a movie to Redbox, and he was holding it. He looked at it and said, "I forgot to watch this movie yesterday." He knew we had gotten the movie the day before, he remembered saying he had to watch it, then he remembered he hadn't watched it and he articulated it. I am amazed. Maybe to most people, it's nothing but the fully correct sentence out of a 31 month old is amazing to me!

Dear Oli,

You are growing so fast, mommy and daddy are afraid to blink. You are no longer afraid of the mall ride on toys. You actually get excited when you see them, especially the train one, and ask to ride it.

You are aware of everything you see or hear and have already started asking a billion questions a day.

You have started asserting your independence. You knows the rule of holding hands if we are crossing the road but as soon as we get onto the sidewalk, you pull your hand free and with a furrowed brow, exclaim, "we are not on the road anymore, mommy."

You love climbing up on the fences by our house and scream at airplanes.

But, I love that you still love to cuddle sometimes. You'll randomly ask us for hugs and pull us close. And, demand that we get a photo of the three of us.

You ask me to sing to you at bedtime or your daddy to show you baseball highlights on his phone. some nights you even tell us a story. Just the other night, you told me you saw some bad guys at the police station. They'd been fighting and one got a bad boo-boo on his big knee. I can only imagine your imagination.

Keep that imagination alive for as long as you can, my little one. And stay my little one for just a little bit longer. Mommy's not ready to let go of your hand yet even though you are.

We love you and can't wait to see what comes next.

Mommy and daddy.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Rewarding weight loss/healthy lifestyle

How do you reward weight loss goals you've reached? I had a set a 20 lbs goal for myself some weeks months ok ok years ago. I am now at 10 lbs to lose and am setting small goals, like getting under the next decade number, losing 5 etc. But, I can't think of what to use as a reward when I reach that goal.

  • Food and/or drink: I don't believe in any deprivation diet; I believe in everything in moderation. So, I eat a piece of candy or a serving of chips or handful of nuts when I crave them instead of waiting till I'll binge on them. So, that wouldn't really be a reward.
  • Fitting into old clothing: I already do. Since I am in the middle of sizes, and the pregnancy distributed the weight differently, I can actually wear all my old clothes right now.
  • New clothing and/or shoes: I buy that stuff when I see something good and on sale. I wouldn't see it as a special rewarding thing.
  • Spa treatments (massage, pedicure etc.): I just don't enjoy it enough to make it a reward. I get a massage every couple years when somebody gifts it to me and at the end of it, I always think I wasted my time and their money. I get pedicures twice a year - at the beginning and at the end of summer.
  • Vacation: We already have our vacations scheduled through September and then the next one will be Christmas in CA, so no time to plan one as a reward.
  • Jewelry: I haven't bought jewelry in years and it's not because of any other reason but the fact that I have enough and I don't want any more cluttering my cabinets, shelves or drawers.
  • Handbag/purse: I buy a new purse every 3-4 years when the one I have starts falling apart. It's not an accessory, it's an item of usefulness, so not something I'd go spend money on to reward myself.
  • Haircut: I go 2 years without a haircut and I just got one that I love, so no way am I messing this up by getting one as a reward. And, it doesn't feel like a reward anyways.
So, what do I do? How do I motivate myself through these last few pounds? Come on fellow human beings, tell me what motivates you and I might get some inspiration.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

I'm glad I'm turning into my mother

If I was asked to draw a picture of my mother as I remember her from my childhood, it would be her in a colorful sari, matching bangles, jewelry, bindi and shoes. In one hand, there would be a cleaning rag and in the other, a rolling pin that served 2 purposes. 1 of course was to roll out our rotis and the second was to threaten us with a beating for any infraction, it could be a bad grade, a sassy mouthed comment, a missed class, a complaint about her elder daughter (me) talking to THE bad boy at school ... You get the idea. And I'm so thankful for that rolling pin.

Ask the girl I was 20 years ago and I probably would have said I hated my mother. She was ruining my fife. She didn't understand me. She was so angry over anything that I didn't even know what she was angry over.

Ask me now. I cannot believe the things I put my mother through. I cannot believe I made her worry about my future. About what I was doing when I was supposed to be in school. About what would happen to me when I grew up.

Now that I have a child, I understand. I get it. I want him to be the best he can be. I don't want to lose my shit when he does something wrong but I totally want to kick his butt when he sasses me. And I cannot even think of when he starts dating. What's is she's a gold digger and wants all his mom's gold?

Fine, fine, I don't have any gold. But you know what I mean.

I don't even know what I mean.

All I know s having a child has made me appreciate my mom in so many ways.

Mom, thank you so much for raising me the way you did and I'm sorry for everything I did inspite of it.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Advice to any parent

Just read this and apply whichever criticism applies to your decisions. Because no matter what, somebody out there will find some way to undermine your decision and tell you how you'll forever scar your kid's psyche.

You want a natural childbirth? Freaking hippies. Want the epidural? Well obviously you're not woman enough.

You decide to breastfeed longer than a year? What a martyr. You have to formula supplement or feed? What a giver upper.
You decide to stay at home? Lazyass. You decide to go back to work? You don't love your child.

You decide to let the baby sleep with you? You murderous non-caring parent. You make the child sleep on their own? You are obviously too cold to be a good parent.

You decide to soothe the baby by carrying him and rocking him? You are going to spoil that child, you'll be carrying him to college. You let the baby cry it out? Holy cow you must not have a heart.

You let the child feed themselves as soon as they can hold food? You must be trying to choke your own child. You feed the child for as long as possible yourself? You must be a control freak.

You never leave the baby to go out alone or with each other? Your marriage must be suffering. You go out to dinner leaving the child with family or a caregiver? You are a horrid parent.

I haven't even covered a small percentage of what you'll be judged on. I could go on and on. Every little decision you make will have somebody rolling their eyes. So my ONLY advice to you is take everything with a grain of salt and go with your gut. Don't let others get you to doubt your decisions.

Parenting is so hard. It is the hardest thing I've ever done. I think it was harder being that I was 35 when I had Oli. Less energy, less patience, less flexibility. But, when his face lights up as soon as he sees us and he runs to us yelling mom and dad, those sleepless nights and those seemingly unending tantrums are so forgotten. When his little arms hug me around my neck and he kisses me, I don't doubt a single decision we've made regarding him.

We as parents need to bond together and support each other emotionally, heaven knows we need it. Leave the judgment at the door and ask a new parent how you can help.

And hey new parent? When somebody asks you that, seriously, tell them. Ask them to hold the baby so you can shower. So, you can nap. Ask them to pick up groceries for you. To make freezer meals for your recovery period. Ask them to pick you up a disgustingly high in calories meal from McDonalds because that's the only thing your brain wants. Ask them to come sit with you and hand you tissues as you cry on your couch without even knowing why you are crying. Ask who keeps late or early hours, so you know who you can call at what time. Don't be afraid to ask!