If you've been reading you know I was husbandless this summer and did not have a whole lot of time for anything. I was seven months pregnant and it was all I could do to do the minimum amount of cleaning and basic hygiene. I was with the kids all day and we were really active, we went to playgroups almost daily, my oldest and I did crafts while the younger one slept, and I tried to fill our days to make the time go by faster, and it worked. We wrote to Daddy everyday, made a big production of going to the mailbox to check for replies, and sent him little hand-made gifts and scribbles. He was able to call occasionally, but usually after the girls were in bed. Audrey and I talked a TON about where Daddy was, and why he was there, and we had the vitamin jar. A jar with same number of vitamins as there were days left to see Daddy. So when the vitamins were gone, Daddy would be home. It worked really well. But with jam-packed days, I didn't have a lot of time to maintain my home. With limited mobility, sometimes I didn't have the physical ability.
I'm what I call a late-morning person. I have the most energy from about 9 in the morning to noon. Usually, I can get my entire house clean during this period of time, but obviously it's destroyed again in ten minutes and I was tired of waking up to a filthy house. So I started cleaning after the kids went to bed. I was exhausted, so I definitely half-assed it, but it was better than nothing. The FlyLady helped me out a lot with this. She has a way of wording chores that make them seem so easy and doable, not at all overwhelming, and she encourages you to just do what you can and not worry about the rest. Brilliant. So I would shove all the toys into a corner, vacuum the middle of the room, load the dishwasher, shine my sink, start the washing machine, and clear a "hot spot", all in about a half hour. Bonus: The white noise puts the kids to sleep. Then in the morning, I just folded the one load of laundry, put away the one load of dishes, and I felt a little better about the condition of the house. I was mostly worried about sanitation, because I had a small bug problem which I didn't want to get worse, and obviously I didn't want to get sick without my other half, so the clutter got worse and worse. I had a friend who would say, It's okay, it's just stuff. We all have stuff. Let it go. So I did :) I let sleep and kid-time win over cleaning. Sometimes you have to.
I am a firm believer in Mommy's sanity coming *almost* ahead of everything else, because Mommy can't be a good Mommy if Mommy is a crazy person. So I did get a babysitter a few times a week. I went to trivia once a week, bunco once a month, book club once a month, and did a few Miche parties here and there. (jackiemarks.miche.com). You have to feel like a real person sometimes, and it doesn't hurt the kids to be with another adult for a short period of time, certainly. I actually felt guilty about this for a few weeks until I told myself most single moms spent a lot more time away from their kids than I do.
Now imagine this household I've described, and then add the newborn baby. That's exactly why I was not about to move away from my friends and my parents before she was born (I was given the option). My friends brought us food, they vacuumed, they picked up toys, they did dishes, and they sat and chatted with me while the kids played. Pure. Awesomeness. And I hope I can pay it forward someday.
Now that we are reasonably settled and my newborn is no longer a newborn, I am scrapbooking again!! Yay!! The whole reason I came to blog today is scrapbooking, but I felt the need to explain just how much I could not scrapbook for most of the year. My husband is awesome, and he understand the need for a sane Mommy too, so he will let me lock myself in a room for hours (sometimes days) to scrap. I finally finished Ayla's baby book, and worked on a few other projects.
Above is a growth chart I need to have laminated. Below are Butterfly Party decorations, all made with the cricut. Get one. It's awesome.
Below are word-building flashcards I made with the cricut.
And pics of Ayla's baby book:
Sorry for the glare; I was in a hurry and will take better ones tomorrow. Below is a pic of a pouch I glued to the back cover of the album, in which I keep things like ultrasound pictures, hospital bracelets, and Disney tickets.
And there you have it :) Thanks for bugging me to get blogging again.