Thursday, May 29, 2014

Spontaneous Combustion

Last week(s) I was in a spirally funk. Stay at home mom depression? No. Just the subconscious dread and fear and dread and anxiety and dread that gives me cuticle chewing anxiety for a week and exhausting PTSD for a month. After I have one panic attack, no matter how minor it is, it's hard to get out of that loop. The circle of the anxious life.

It's been like my outsides are collapsing on my insides and my insides are about to burst out of my outsides. I'm sure that's a the formula for spontaneous combustion 101. Or how a blow fish must feel.

Blow fish I feel your pain.

But really. I'm super frustrated about all this joyful rise of emotions. Because really, what do I have to be so anxious about? (Rad's tantrums, Rad's running away like he's trying to find Neverland, Rhett's attempts at public nudity, how we forgot to take the garbage to the curb and it stinks to high hog heaven...) Life is pretty much decent if not really good. I just keep (not exaggerating) losing my marbles about small potatoes.

For example:

My silent but almost deadly morning long anxiety attack about getting all two kids in the car and to preschool drop-off without any major hiccups was all for nothing. All of Rhett's limbs stayed in the car, Rad stared off into the abyss of Arizona desert, and Katy Perry was all over the radio. But if you had seen me before the short 15 minute drive you would have thought that the walking dead were trying to take Rhett to preschool. I know...woe is me. Not woe to those who have legitimate struggles.

So let's keep the train of lame emotional issues rolling, rolling, rolling.

And then, you'd never believe this, so hold on to your seats and whatever beverage you're drinking because our pavers for our backyard got lost in translation between the store and delivery and didn't come in on the scheduled day. The HOROR! Any normal person would let it go, let it go,  and maybe turn their back and slam the door...and leave it at that. But I'm not a Disney princess so I just melt into a pool of anxiety and obsess about how it's not working out like planned. And all my functionality goes flat.

The worst part is how this is affecting my boys. I think of their confusion when I snap for their small inconsequential mistakes. I hear myself apologize for the third time in an hour because I feel beyond overwhelmed and anxious. As much as possible I don't want my cray cray to spread because I'm not doing everything I can to fix it.

The thing is I've done the anti anxiety medication before and I know it helps, but I'm reeling at the idea of possibly needing a pill to help me be normal because I've worked dang hard to learn how to work through anxiety and triggers and I feel like going back to medication is discrediting the progress I've made.

Today might be better...or it might be worse (pretty please no no no no no no no no) but there are nice moments to get me through. I know that life really is very good. The worst part about anxiety and/or depression is it makes it really hard to feel peace be it spiritual, physical, emotional so especially when you need the peace it's hard to access simply because your mind and body can't process it. You're too overwhelmed with other crap to have any peace stay. I don't talk about my faith much, but this recent and semi-constant battle wears at it sometimes. (If you don't want to read another sentence or two about my churchy faith stuff you can skip ahead, or you know where the nearest exit is. It looks a little something like...X.) But anyway in a nutshell when I feel myself wavering the most, I remember when the Savior was in the Garden of Gethsemane atoning for us and experiencing sorrow and pain (both physical and emotional) and grief and even He felt totally alone wondering where God was. I try to remember that in my lowest moments that it's not that I'm not being heard or loved or helped, it's that the anxiety and depression sometimes block the ability to feel it for the moment.

And so...I didn't set out to write a downer of a rambler post but I can feel it in my currently melancholic insides that this just might qualify. If you're still reading I totally apologize. Let me know if I've added any extra woe to your day and I'll mail you something with a proven track record for a sugar high to boost you up.

Annnd next time I post I promise it'll be happier. With rose colored glasses, happy emoticons and all.

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Monday, May 26, 2014

so much to say, so little time part 9

conversations with a 3 year old are fantastic
At the pool 

Julia: Come here, you need some sunscreen.
Rhett: Oh, YEAH I'll take some ice cream. Thanks.

Looking in the mirror admiring his bed head

Rhett: Wow my brain got huge! It pushed my hair out!

In the kitchen

Julia: Rhett can you go get the diaper bag?
Rhett: Say please!
Julia: Please.
Rhett: Stands there staring
Julia: What's wrong?
Rhett: You have to say now.
Rhett: OK!

An every 5 minute discussion

Rhett: When are we going to Grandma's?
Julia: In July. 
Rhett: Okay
Rhett: Is it January yet?
Julia: It's May. We're going in July.
Rhett: Ok so now it's time to go on the airplane?
Julia: No. In July. In 2 months. 
Rhett: Is it January now? 
Julia: Almost.

Pack muling sod into the backyard

Julia: Rhett look at the grass!
Rhett: Runs around a few times.
Julia: Are you excited?!
Rhett: You need to get more grass now.
Julia and Jake:
Rhett: I'm over this. Walks away.

Every single time I try to escape into the bathroom

Rhett: Can I watch?
Julia: No. Absolutely not.
Rhett: (unfazed) Rad!! Come here!! Hurry!

An overheard conversation with his toys

Rhett: We're the good guys; and we're the bad guys! We don't listen to our mom!

Walking by a distressed Rad

Rhett: It's OK Rad.
Rad: Shooo pa teeee mammamammamamma
Rhett: Yellow cheetah at your service.

Watching me get dressed

Rhett: Mom, why are your private (chest) parts getting so huge?
Rhett: Are they going to explode?! (With hand motions...)

And he has no secrets

Chick fil a worker: What's your name?
Rhett: Well, I just wiped my booger in my hair right here. See? (Sure enough, there was a booger.)

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

not my circus, not my monkeys

I had one of those fleeting "I've got everything under control! Circus smirkus! Why do I ever complain about anything? I'm so silly!" moments last week.

I loaded the boys into a cart at Walmart, made it through the store relatively quickly with .97 meltdowns about why we couldn't carry the toilet brush from the cleaning aisle around the whole store. (Gosh darn it not fun me.) Mama was happy, the toddler sloth was happy and the permanently pointing baby was happy. Winning. Definitely winning. I marched triumphantly outside to the car to find Rhett's car door left very much ajar by a Ms. Neverforgetsathang. Thankfully the suburban parking lot thieves weren't in the market for a car crusted in gold fish crackers, fruit snack wrappers and smelling of adorable toddlers. #dirtycarforthewin

Speaking of other things car related. Rhett has slight...road rage. Maybe it sounds better if I say passive aggressive road rage or maybe that just applies to the overly dramatic eye rolls Speed Racer gives other slower vehicles.

Surely nothing that was learned from any parental figures who spend 16 hours a day with them.


And then there was this.

Trying to catch cars with his net.
We breed em...competitive.
Rhett loves to yell "blue lighting!!" which signifies the designated driver must punch the gas for an added zoom zoom letting Rhett tell the other cars he's sorry they're soooo slow. Again with the passive aggressive little boy. Judge me. Judge me hard.

Sometimes my sanity goes on hiatus, the hiatus happing usually enroute, in a car with two grumpy boys in the back seat. But really. Truth or truth...driving with kids when they are content, driving is the BEST. Windows down, a good playlist, your thoughts. Bliss.

And then you go around the bend and the sun hits the sensitive little eyes and all bliss hits the pavement. Splat. I eternally debate pulling over and resolving whatever the trauma drama is, but usually I toss whatever I grab out of the diaper bag and pray that Roar is on the radio.

These boys? Baby geniuses. Where else could they pull all the wipes out and have me be cool with it.
Or shake their snack baggies maraca style and let all the fishy crackers confetti the car seats.

The other day a bearded motorcyclist pulled up next to us. Rhett rolled his window down and yelled "Jesus! I like your motorcycle! And your muscles!" (No, no - I don't worry about him ever.)

Not my circus. Not my monkeys.

I think.
I can.

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Monday, May 19, 2014

summa cum preschool

The boy's pulled my favorite stunt of all time the other day: they both made noticeable steps toward growing up just a little. Rad learned the art of spontaneous hugs (adorable) and Rhett graduated preschool. So I rewarded them with videos on Instagram and a under appreciated photo shoot of graduation. I don't know where the past 3 1/2 years have gone and somehow our fuzzy headed baby became all 38 pounds of little man boy. Soon he'll be driving himself to his Sumo wrestling class. Yes, I am being that annoying and sentimental mom. Hopefully you aren't reading this too carefully because it's Monday morning and you have about 98 other and better things to be doing. 

They be crazy with them hats.

Nothing whips out an Iphone or large fancy camera faster than preschoolers belting out the pledge of allegiance, the months of the year and the best and loudest duck quacks this side of MST. I am (almost) not ashamed to say at one point I was simultaneously videoing with my phone while snapping pictures with the big fancy camera. Rad hid his face in embarrassment.  

All that multitasking/juggling really payed off. For posterity you know. 

Rhett's teacher Ms Debbie made special awards for each of the kids based on things she had observed during the school year. Rhett was the most likely to be a super hero award. No surprise there considering super hero's are his thing, but my momma emotions got the better of me and read way more into it than I should have. Preschool graduations will do that to you.

And a few bullet points:

1. Rhett (currently) wants to be a fire fighter when he grows up. 
2. We got a little photo album from Ms. Debbie of all their classroom shenanigans. Preschoolers take the best pictures.  
3. Technically this was more of an "advancement" because we've got one more year of preschool before kindergarten.
4. And in terms of academic achievement he's moved on from eternally thinking the letter A is the letter P, learned to sit on - not wrestle his chair, and how to spell his name with no less than 13 additional Ts tacked on. 

On to bigger and better things Rhett, we're proud of you stinker pants. :) 

 PS. When it comes to educating my posterity I am especially fail-y. I have the "it takes a village" mentality or outsourcing (saying that will probably glean a few raised eye brows) but I really am so grateful when my prayers get answered and the best possible people come into my kid's lives. I know they'll be lots of "graduations" between now and when the boys leave the nest and I hope we keep being blessed with the same high caliber people in our lives that we have now.  

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

6 pictures, 6 things

1. Mamacita day. Rhett wanted to get me a "horse named bee-nana that rides in the desert" and he "wanted to hold the rope and that would sleep in his room." (Don't worry, I wasn't mourning the lack of horse in the mother's day gift pile or in his room.) The celebration was a little lost on Rad who had a fever and the pukes. I like to think he just didn't want me to forget my role as resident human pillow. Jake was a saint and let me nap after church and made the best killer corn on the cob for dinner. I kept fishing for compliments from Rhett hoping for some good motherhood affirmation but the closest thing I got was I'm a decent mom because I like flowers, I run with my rocket shoes, we ride bikes together, I don't say hate and have to go to time out and we eat crackers like a picnic. I'll take it.   

2. "Mom I got you a flower cause you're a genius!" Brain child learned a new word, but clearly not how to use it correctly. But don't tell him I said that. 

3. "Oh Raaaad!!!! Pink's a GIRL'S color!!" said righteous Rhett. Well radical Rad really, truly, deeply loves that shirt to a fabulous fault.  

4. Ceremoniously christening the start of summer with a tinkle sprinkle. #singleshot #ontherocks He also decided to relieve his large intestines with #2 on our driveway thus ending my uncertainty as to why our neighbors rarely look us in the eye.  

5. He dissected his own diaper, ate a bite out of every strawberry, tore 50% of my clothes off their hangers, broke a lamp, threw his cereal off his tray 3x, ripped apart a board book, unfolded a mountain of laundry, and never left the glass menagerie shower doors while I bathed (always). A morning in the life.

6. The original meets his protégé. 

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

backyard (partial) makeover

And even that is a super generous title considering the dust bowl still making up half our yard. Which isn't the worst, especially for little boys, but since we spend much of our time under the blue sky it's starting to get to me and blah blah I already talked about this

But! Progress is progress and I've never been one not to toot the proverbial horn, so let's humor each other (me) and oooh and ahhh together at the 26% of accomplishment we've so far achieved in the backyard/dust bowl. 

So I know it's pretty sparsely landscaped (ha!) but for a terribly untrained eye like mine I think it merits at least one gold star. We have big plans to deck the yard out in palm tress, green green grass, a wall of flowers and of course the collection of sun bleached yard toys. Because we're classy. Or classay. 

But let's back up and talk about the mere 3 months it took to get to this point. 

The tramp. Or should we call it the pit of h-e-double hockey sticks? Because man, we will never repeat this DIY again. 

All in the name of frugality and inflated self esteem we dug the 13X4 foot hole by pick ax and shovel. We did wise up about half way through and hire two young men from our church congregation to help dig. Let's call them Thor and Captain America. Thor and Captain America bulldozed their way through 1/3 of the hole which helped us with the final push to get it dug out. 

And then this happened. 

Hell hath no fury like a trampoline that won't fit it's hole.

Not laughing.

If this doesn't make you want to run, grab a shovel and start slinging dirt then I don't know what will. In two dozen words or less, we didn't quite measure right and needed to chip away at the dirt in some areas to get the frame to slide in. Funnnnn.

Oh yeah. We framed the frame of the trampoline out with sheet metal and 2X4s as suggested by the ingenious Brooke of All Thing's Thrifty. Her documentation and photos were life savers so check all that goodness out. 

I don't think I captured the colossal amount of dirt we had left over. We ended up dumping tons of it back into the trampoline hole (definition of insanity...?) to help brace it and filled the raised beds and leveled out side yard and still had enough dirt to make a 87 prairie dogs very happy. So we offered it for free to anyone who wanted it and had some saintly takers, but still had way to much. So we called in the calvary ie the missionaries from out local area. In less then 2 hours the dirt was loaded of to be (legally) dumped in the desert and I've never been so grateful for freely given service. 

What a fun, long post this is becoming. Let's pick up the pace. More pictures less wordage. 

We are probably too proud of ourselves with the raised beds and fire pit. Granted the beds need a lot of TLC still and the fire pit still needs chairs...but we love using it and Rhett always wants to roast "mushrooms" (marshmallows). I'll share some more details about it in a few weeks once we make some small changes to it. 

And because of my need for your admiration, I would like to point out that each of the bricks for the raised beds weighs 24 pounds. (Subtlety flexes faux muscles...)

So basically here's the game plan for the next couple of weeks. 

1. On the 17th our sprinkler/irrigation system is getting installed. (Yes we are hiring that out. #winning) 

2. On the 20th the sod is getting delivered and laying it. (We're doing it ourselves. #failing)

3. Sometime before then we're going to pick out the palm trees and other foliage that will be going back behind the trampoline. We scored an awesome deal on river rock that will be surrounding the trees etc. Like 2500lbs for $50 from Lowes.  Bada bing, bada boom. 

4. We picked up some trellis for the bougainvillea and purchased a few more to help get the wall filled in a little faster. The plan is to have a wall of hot pink flowers that will help drown the brown. (1, 2, 3)

5. And a few of the less fun updates will be switching out the old brass lighting (we already did this for our other outdoor lights), getting a flood light and lastly choosing gravel for the side yards. 

Don't worry, we're done. Post is over and...


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