Mother’s Day

It was a really good weekend. We stayed close to home. My little boy is going through something right now. Some sort of transition which just breaks my heart and makes me so sad. There’s so much new independence with turning 4, he’s dressing himself, writing, starting to read, so so busy at school. I guess with that maybe comes fear? Plus he got really really sick two weeks ago and maybe had a hard time┬átransitioning back into the routine. Whatever it is, a lot of old fears and anxieties are coming back, full force. We’re trying to breathe through it, but it’s hard.

But this post helped. ┬áSo this weekend we stayed close to home. It was kind of rainy and cloudy so we spent time with his marbles (his new obsession) and in the garden just playing. “Bare feet?” he asks, his eyes twinkling. Of course. We checked out a yard sale, a quiet playground, but mostly just stayed home. He relaxed and didn’t seem as worried.

And we relaxed too. Whole Food sushi was the Mother’s Day dinner. (By the way, that’s a great alternative to ordering sushi out, cheaper and more choice.) We played outside in the evenings and he fell into bed happy and asleep.

Has anyone else experienced this almost-4 anxiety? What did you do? Just wait through it?

Grateful for a Rainy Weekend

I’m sure mothers of active toddlers all over New England mournfully sighed when they saw the rainy weekend forecast. I was one of them. As I left Friday and said goodbye to a young, childless colleague, we mentioned the rain and I admitted I was a little jealous of her as she could do what she liked this weekend and didn’t have to entertain a child. I have memories of spending whole rainy weekends reading and watching movies under blankets.

But this weekend ended up surprising me. It was actually kind of nice and relaxing. There was no need to really get out the door to enjoy the sunshine because there was none to be had. As I mentioned in previous posts, Z. has been loving the drawing and painting lately and here he had a whole day to do it. We got out the “messy paints.” We’ve been using Crayola Washable paints. Once he used those, he had no interest in the wimpy watercolors. I squirted some colors on a paper plate, spread some newspaper and he was off. By the end of the weekend filled-up drawing paper was scattered all over the house.

And I seemed to end up with a lot of time to do what I wanted. I baked bread and made pots of beans. I made two solid dinners with some farmer’s market turkey I had bought on Wednesday. I read while he drew. Sunday morning it was decent enough to make a trip to Trader Joe’s in the morning and Z helped transfer groceries from the stroller to the kitchen which he loved. We went for a walk in the afternoon in the light rain, he fell asleep and I got a little shopping done for his birthday.

It’s almost like the universe sent the rain just in time. My legs and feet were feeling achy from a long week of walking to and from work in bad shoes. And Z. seemed to have no issue with it and almost welcome a weekend to devote to his new favorite activity. So this week, I’m grateful for the rain.

 

Homebodies

We’re going away this weekend to my sister’s. I should be excited, right? Truthfully, I’m not that into weekends away. I feel like I fall behind. Last time I went away, I took Monday off to get stuff done like gardening and food shopping because it stressed me out so much not having everything set up for the week. This weekend is a long weekend and we’re coming back on Sunday but still. I noticed the arugula is browning this morning and I need to thin it out. I have to buy a birthday present for my nephew and pack before we go. I’ll have to take Friday off for the drive up. I think I’m turning into my mother. I would prefer to be at home, in my own yard, on my own routine. Is that awful?

Last summer we spent a week at the cape with family and I burst into tears one night. Z wasn’t sleeping, my husband seemed negative, it just seemed hard. My mother said vacation with children is just work in a different place. I guess that’s how I feel going away this weekend. Plus, there will be a party which causes social anxiety for me. I won’t know anyone and that’s always hard for me.

What about you? Are you a homebody too? Do you take lots of weekends away? How do your kids adjust to the change in routine?

Radishes and Drawing

Right now I’m…

Loving instagram which makes my iphone photographs look so much better than they are!

Thinking I’m going to have to get a second job to keep Z in drawing paper.

Enjoying the short radish season and waiting eagerly for the sprouting arugula.

Remembering how active summer is when Z fell asleep yesterday on the living room rug.

Getting reacquainted with nature with Z’s obsession with all things frogs and turtles.

Wishing you a a wonderful week!

Monday Musings

-loving Z’s interest in painting, drawing, coloring, and everything art.

-wondering if I’ll be able to keep him in paper and getting ready to scour the school recycling bins.

-proud of this table found at a yard sale.

-smiling at my first child-selected bouquet of flowers.

-nervous about my independent writing project I will be assigning during this end of the year, after MCAS, before finals purgatory.

-hoping this post doesn’t get lost again!

-wishing you a wonderful week!

 

 

Blueberry Bushes and Bedtime

I don’t know why I haven’t written anything substantial in almost two weeks. I’ve certainly started enough posts in my head. Work was rough before break and there certainly wasn’t time to dash off any deep thoughts. Without revealing too much, politics and parents are really getting me down.

Another problem is bedtime. Z. is going through this phase where he wants me to stay with him until he falls asleep. The virtuous mindful parent in me wants to honor this as this is what he needs right now and pretty soon he won’t want me around and I should savor this. The Ferber parent feels manipulated and that the kid is almost three and should go to sleep on his own after his proper bedtime routine. Either way, I’m not getting time to myself until about 9pm unless he’s skipped a nap. I just snuck out of the prison made of dinosaur sheets and Toy Story decals. I either wait until he’s sleepy enough and I can tell him that I’m just going to the bathroom or I get pissed off and snap at him everytime he giggles or I fall asleep. See my awesome options?

The thing is I don’t care what he does in there. He can have a keg party as long as I don’t have to stay until my bedtime.

On a better note, we has an awesome “weekend” away. (Chef’s hours: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday). We stayed overnight in a hotel sans child (at my mom’s). It was my first night away from Z. Harder than I thought but incredible. The best part was after our amazing dinner, my husband put his arm around me and asked, “You wanna just get some beer and go back to the hotel and watch The Voice?”

Um…YES!!!

Oh and we got blueberry bushes. More on those and the sprouting garden tomorrow. (I hope!)

Weekend Highlights

-I got published! It’s here if you want to read it. Probably everyone gets published on Yahoo! Voices and it’s an old blog post but it was the one highlight to a really sucky week.

-The last two weeks were awful. MCAS, another stomach virus, eye-deep in politics at work. 8th grade girls crying, the works. My nerves were frayed by Friday morning and I spent much of Friday afternoon crying in the bedroom in between taking care of Z. and making dinner. My husband was wrecked from night shifts back-to-back with morning shifts. I was asleep by 8:30 which caused a whole new outlook on life Saturday morning.

-I’ve realized that Z. is a very physical child like all little boys I guess. He loves to wrestle and climb on us and I think Z hitting me is a part of that. I think the problem is that I’m not a very physical person. I have a bad back, a c-section scar, and a generally wimpy tolerance to pain. So I’m trying to figure out how to set those boundaries with him with my body but still respect his need for that physicality. (Is that a word?)

-Hoping this week will be smoother. It’s a four day week and then one more week until vacation. No more MCAS and just regular teaching. May your week be smooth as well!

Things I’m Thinking…

 

-I have this windowsill in my kitchen that we end up putting all of our odds and ends: chapstick, seashells, cool rocks, Z’s watercolor paint water cup, paintbrushes. I love it. I set up little displays.

-I made some really good bread this weekend from James Beard’s book. It’s called French Style Bread. I actually set a timer for 10 minutes when I was kneading the dough. It really made a difference. I think with some tweaking, I can make it like a crusty loaf of bakery bread and stop buying bread altogether.

-Anxious about the coming week. Z is really sick, we even sucked up the $25 copay with our sucky new insurance to go to the doctor. Of course it’s a virus, which I knew but he’s definitely been sicker than I’ve ever seen him. I also have to proctor MCAS this week which all you Mass. teachers know means no calling out. It sucks to have the “Who’s going to take care of the kid?” conversation with my husband. Makes me feel guilty.

-Looking forward to Spring and Summer with the warm weather. Z slept in the stroller on our long walk and ran into an old friend. Was able to sit on the porch and read the second book in the Hunger Games trilogy. I’m getting excited to teach the first book next year.I’m also getting excited to start the garden and have started looking at seeds online.

-Have a wonderful week!

 

Weekend Thoughts

Just put Z to bed. It was a rough one with the time change that of course I didn’t plan for. I should have skipped his nap. I can hear him fooling around in his room.

It was a weird weekend. Went out with some girlfriends Friday night, neither of whom have kids. I felt weird anyway because I have to wear my glasses for a month due to an eye infection. I’ve been wearing contacts since I was twelve so wearing glasses makes me feel discombobulated. They were also late and I was early, like the dork that I am, and I ended up sitting at the bar by myself for a while which I haven’t done in a long time. Alone with the Friday night crowd with my thoughts at a hip bar. After dinner was over I was thinking that I actually had enjoyed my conversation with some other moms at daycare as we waited for our napping toddlers to wake up almost more than the dinner conversation. I felt sort of out of it at dinner and I couldn’t quite keep up with the talk of tv shows I hadn’t seen and online dating that I’ve never done. I always wish I had more friends with kids.

Today we went for a walk in a local park. I love watching Z run around, chasing birds, climbing hills to find the perfect stick or rock. Playgrounds are cool but I feel like Z gets stuck digging in the sand and doesn’t move enough. We also made sure to stock up on really good food, especially fresh produce. I need to try to eat better during the work week instead of subsisting on yogurt and granola bars. In my last job, I left the house at 6am and didn’t return until 6pm so I was much more mindful about the food and snacks I brought. I’ve had to remind myself that I feel so much better when I eat well. So this week we have tons of fresh fruit and veggies, I’m sure not local but it is New England in the winter, and some good staples. I made Amanda Soule’s leftover oatmeal muffins (best recipe I’ve tried) as well as a tortellini salad with lots of salad veggies.

Anxious about the coming weeks. We have MCAS practice days this week and then two weeks of testing for me. I don’t worry so much about how they do, it will be what it will be, but more about the behavior and emotions. Will they take it seriously or blow it off? I have a student that has refused to take it in the past, will he repeat his performance? Also just the whining and the dead time after the test. I prefer my neat, orderly classes that I have complete control over. With MCAS, I’m at the mercy of administration scheduling me the right rooms at the right times.

Sorry for the melancholy post with the beautiful spring weather coming. I think I just need to get through March and the feeling of burnout that comes with it. Z is calling me, he’s so not going to sleep well tonight!

How was your weekend? What are you thinking about?