Thursday, July 21, 2005


OMG it is soooo hot! Today and the next 4 days we're supposed to have highs in the 100's with up to 115 heat index! I do not like heat. Adam does not handle heat well either. This will be an indoor weekend for sure! Hmmm...need to think of something for Brendan to do this weekend.

Joe will be working Saturday, so once again I don't think I will get anything I need to do accomplished. Last night Joe worked late again. Their work day ended up being 4:00pm-1:00am yesterday. But it scared me to death because he had told me he thought they'd be done at 10pm. Next thing I know I'm waking up at 1:00am and he's still not there. I called his office (yes, at 1am) because I didn't know what else to do. He called me back about 5 minutes later and said they just got back from the river (he works on the river for about 3/4 of his job). So, about 1:30am or so he finally got home. This morning I had to skip my workout because Joe needed to sleep, so I needed to feed Adam, get both boys up & dressed, etc. Normally I exercise from 5:15-6am before getting ready for work. As I'm getting the boys out the door to take them to daycare Brendan is upset and saying that Daddy didn't come in and give him a kiss last night. I told him that Daddy got home very late, and he gave him a kiss while he was sleeping. Then Brendan asked if Daddy was going to pick him up from daycare today. No, daddy very rarely picks him up from daycare. I reminded Brendan that Daddy will be at work. Brendan whines "NOOOOO I don't want Daddy to work again, I want Daddy to come home". What do I say to that. Brendan is obviously missing time with Daddy again. I'm not the only one being affected. *sigh*

I'm trying to hang in there, because NEXT weekend I will finally get a little break! My mom, sister, and I started a yearly tradition of going 1 weekend a year to a cabin for a girls weekend. This is what we do instead of getting each other birthday gifts. We all 3 love to scrapbook, and we all 3 work & hardly have time, so that is our weekend to relax and scrapbook together! No interupptions, no responsibilities, just time together to eat, drink, hang-out, talk, laugh, and scrap! I cannot wait!!! I need this break so badly. Wish it was this weekend, but surely I can hang in there 1 more week.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Being stressed out really sucks!

Why can't I hold it together? I use to be so good at handling stress, now I'm a basket case! Last night Joe worked late (again), and I was in charge of all the after-work through bedtime responsibilities (as is the case most of the time!). Getting home from work is my least favorite time of day...isn't that horrible? After picking the boys up at daycare, we have a 20 minute drive home, in which I listen to constant noise noise noise- whether he's mad or happy, Brendan is just plain loud, and usually he is constantly touching and poking and squealing at Adam the entire ride. Usually Adam is delighted with this and returns Brendan's squeals with loud squeals of his own. Other times Brendan goes too far and accidentally hurts Adam, and then there's a baby screaming while I'm driving and trying to find out from Brendan what happened, and if it was something Brendan did "wrong", how do you discipline while driving? Yesterday Adam cried and I asked Brendan why Adam was crying and Brendan said "because I punched him". WHAT?! (not hard, but still!) So I sternly got after Brendan and told him to never do that again, etc, etc. (I'm trying not to spank as much) Get home, and get the boys out of the car, try to gather up the mail and my stuff from work while carrying Adam and stumble up to the house. It's almost 100 degrees, and so humid, and I do not handle heat well anyway. With Adam in one arm, and all my stuff in the other I fumble to get the door unlocked, finally go inside. I put Adam in his feeding chair (we never did buy a highchair), and he starts crying. So I try to hurry & get his food out so he can see I'm feeding him, not leaving him (separation anxiety kicking in these days). Meanwhile Brendan is pointing out the obvious saying "Mommy, Adam is crying, Mommy can you get Adam, Mommy I want a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, Mommy Adam is hungry, Mommy I don't think Adam likes his chair, Mooommmmmyyyyy." Finally sit to feed Adam his baby food, and eventually make Brendan his sandwich, then clean up Adam. By then I have to pee so bad I'm about to burst, so I put Adam on the floor with some toys and run to the bathroom with him screaming because I put him down. Brendan: "Mommy Adam is crying, Mommy can you get Adam." Just a minute, geez! Mommy needs to pee! Pee as fast as I can, run back in the living room and sit down on the floor to try to entertain Adam. The evening continues similar to this, and around 7:30 Adam is tired and even more fussy...time for his "night-night bottle". Fix his bottle, sit down with him and feed him. He falls asleep- Whew! Now I can give Brendan his bath (or so I thought). Run bath water, and after a few minutes of "I don't want to take a bath, I'm not dirty, I want to play" I finally get Brendan in the tub. Get him washed up, and as usual he wants to play in the tub w/ his bath toys for a few minutes. Okay, good, laundry room is right next to bathroom so I start folding laundry and then "WWWAAAAAAAAAAAAA", Adam is awake and screaming. Run upstairs and get Adam, rock him for a little bit, he goes back to sleep. Run back downstairs to retrieve Brendan out of the tub, but he wants to play more. Fine. 1 more minute. I go back to getting clothes out of the dryer. Get 2 shirts folded and then "WWWWAAAAAAAAAAAA" Adam is awake AGAIN! Go into the bathroom and pull Brendan out of the tub, and quickly put his frog robe on him, meanwhile he's once again saying "Mommy Adam is crying, Mommy Adam is awake, Mommy go get Adam" UGH! I KNOW! So I tell Brendan to go in his room and dry himself off and put on jammies. I run back upstairs, get Adam, this time he does not want to be rocked. Give up. Take him downstairs. It is now almost 9pm, Joe is still not home yet, Brendan is still naked having become sidetracked from getting his jammies, Adam is fussy & tired and so am I. Fix Adam another bottle, as I'm at a loss as to what else to do for him. Sit down on couch again and feed Adam. Tears running down my face. This is getting really old. No, it's not a big deal, none of that stuff is a big deal by itself, but all added together and night after night after night after night in addition to other stress, is just about to push me over the edge. So I'm sitting there feeding Adam with tears rolling down my face and Joe gets home right as Adam falls back asleep. 9:45pm I put Adam back in his crib, and we finish getting Brendan in bed. By then I'm so drained I just can hardly function. I ask Joe to cut back his evening job. He doesn't really need it, and he doesn't even like it. (He delivers pizzas 2 nights a week after his regular day job). Even on the nights he doesn't work there, he either gets home fairly late from his day job or even if he is at home, he is outside working on something he wants/needs to do, so I'm still inside trying to do everything for the boys basically every evening, and on the weekends too. This has GOT to change! I cannot do this alone. At least not right now- stress is too high, and I'm sleep deprived and emotionally depleted. I should be able to handle this...other moms do...but for some reason I'm not handling it well. I have a hard time asking for the help I need, and I told him that last night. And I told him I need more help. And I told him that when I do ask for help and he doesn't do it, then I don't want to keep asking again because I don't want to sound like I'm nagging. He's a good guy, he really is, and he seemed to be genuinely concerned, and like he did want to help. I think he just has no idea what it's like. And maybe I've got a touch of post-partum depression or something too, who knows. It's so frustrating, and I don't like the person I've become. I need to make changes. I need him to make changes too. I don't want to wish away my kids' childhoods! I don't want to resent being a mom, I want to enjoy it and have fun. But I don't always know how. I feel like I'm constantly taking care of everyone else, and no one is taking care of me. I need someone to look out for me sometimes, and a soft place to fall.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Working things out

This weekend Adam's 2nd tooth popped through, so now he has his two bottom front teeth. Saturday morning I went to a few yard sales trying to find some deals. Found a few clothes and toys for Adam, 2 shirts and a skirt for me, a shirt for Joe, and one of those bug catcher cage things for Brendan, and one of those huge suitcases on wheels with the handle that pulls up. It is even a name-brand one, and I got it for $10. A great deal, in my opinion, considering the much smaller one I have that style was $25.
Then Joe worked most of the day after that, so I was home with the boys. Saturday evening I went out with some ladies in the moms group I'm in for our monthly Mom's Night Out. We ate at Macaroni Grill, which was pretty good. It's always nice to go out and be able to have a little break with friends.

On Sunday Joe & I were talking and some of our frustrations about things came out. So, I said, okay, I've been upset with you because you don't help enough around the house, and you've been upset with me because I don't stress about money like you do, so let's work together on both issues and figure something out. I still didn't tell him everything that's been bugging me, but I pointed out a few simple ways he could help me to make things easier, such as throwing away his own trash! (you'd think that would be an obvious one, wouldn't you?) He has a bad habit of leaving empty soda & beer cans, wrappers, used napkins, etc in the living room & kitchen, instead of just tossing them in the trash can. I don't think it's too much to ask to have him toss his own trash! I really don't even mind doing everything around the house as far as chore-type stuff (dishes, laundry, vacuuming, cleaning, etc), it's the fact that not only is he not helping, but he's making it harder for me to do those things by leaving everything everywhere and I have to pick up after him & the boys before I can even begin to do household cleaning. I'm not even asking him to help with indoor chores, just to NOT make it harder on me than it already is...I just do not have any free time already to do things that need to be done. I don't even have any time to myself at all, as I take the boys to daycare every day on my way to work, and then pick them up before I go home, so every moment at home is with kids. At least he has quiet time to & from work, and a half-hour of time after we leave in the mornings before he leaves. If I had that, I would be in heaven! lol

But getting back to Sunday, he did help clear off the kitchen table, which is a huge problem for us. (In FLYlady terms, this is our biggest "hot spot"). It is right there when we walk in the door, so it is where all the mail and such gets put and piles up. A long time ago I had assigned Thursdays as the day I clear it off, (in addition to putting junk mail directly in the trash every day), but I never know what to do with his stuff, so I leave it for him to deal with...but he never does. His pile just gets bigger & bigger and before I know it the table is covered again. So, he cleared it off Sunday. But I'm trying to come up with an idea for all the time of what to do with the stuff that isn't junk mail, but isn't ready to be filed & needs to be taken care of. A bulletin board on the side of the frig? A stand up file thingy? What would work? I don't know. Joe decided that he would go along with my weekly Thursday table clearing and clear his stuff on Thursdays too, so we'll see if that helps.

Then we turned to what's been bugging! Joe is very anal about money issues. I am not. I do not stress out about money. I also do not spend a lot of money, and I do not need or want expensive things. But Joe treats me as if I do. If it isn't something HE would spend money on, then he thinks I shouldn't either. It's very annoying. He gets upset that I want to take a vacation every year. When I say vacation I do NOT mean a big expensive 5-star luxury resort! I always search for affordable places to stay and we do free or cheap activities. I do not like to pay full price for anything, and I make plans for any trips as bare-bones as possible. But he still freaks out anytime I want to go somewhere. To me, it is one of the only ways to get a break from the daily grind, and I need my spirit refreshed once in awhile so I don't go insane! To him it is not important, therefore he gets upset if I want to spend money on that. I work full-time too, in fact I make more money than he does, so I feel like I should be able to do things that I think are important too. After all, this is my life too. Anyway, this has been a re-occuring argument for us. We also want to put an addition on our house soon. He thinks that we should do NOTHING but work until we can save money for the addition. I say we need a home-improvement loan anyway, and we can't just do nothing but work for 15 years in hopes of someday having a life. I want to live life NOW every day, and enjoy it. We need the addition within the next 5 years, the sooner the better, and there's no way we could possible "save up" for it- it would never happen. That's why they have home improvement loans. Yes, of course that would be ideal to be able to save up, but it's not realistic! So anyway, we sat down and wrote down our monthly expenses & income, and looked into ways we can reduce our bills. We already practice cost-cutting, money-saving habits, but there's always room for improvement. So, we figure we'll do little things like being better about turning off lights & such when we're not using them, and we're gonna look into getting a different cell phone plan. (we hardly ever use the cell phone, yet we're paying almost $40 a month for it!). We already do not have cable tv, so that's not an issue. We also discovered that we spend about $700-$800 at Wal-Mart each month. Granted, that is for all of our groceries as well as the other Wal-Mart type stuff, so it isn't all that bad. But, we're gonna try to spend less at Wal-Mart. In November, my car will be paid off (his is already paid off), so we'll have that extra money then too. And then next year, Brendan will start Kindergarten so we'll lose his daycare cost, and when Adam turns 2 his daycare cost drops a little. That means in a year and 2 months we will have over $700 fewer expenses each month! More than enough to be making payments on the home improvement loan. SOOO...I think this has eased Joe's mind a little that there *is* light at the end of the tunnel, and that within a year we will be able to do the addition. Although I will have to be the one to actually get the ball rolling or he will not move forward on the things we need to do to get the addition (plans, etc). He's not one for just "jumping in" or taking a leap of faith! Not at all! lol That's where I come in handy! heehee.

So, all in all, I think we have begun to take steps towards working some little issues out. Hopefully we will both be less stressed and talk more instead of letting resentment build up. Don't get me wrong, we have a very good relationship for the most part, there is just some underlying annoyances from both sides :)

Friday, July 08, 2005

and he's off!

Adam started crawling this past weekend! He's been so close for so long and he finally did it. He only went a little ways at first, but now he is really getting the hang of it. He also has 1 tooth, and is pulling up on things. I can't believe that in 3-1/2 months he will be 1 year old! That just doesn't seem possible! Time goes by so fast. I still kind-of think of him as a newborn. And gosh, he is so darn cute! I love his smiles and giggles. In 2 weeks I need to get his 9 month pictures taken...I hope he shows off his smile for that!

Speaking of babies, someone sent me an email with a link to this interesting (?!) baby item on ebay. I can't believe this product, it's so strange...and deranged! Who would use this for their child??? And what child would be content with this??? None that I know of!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Taking a Moment to Smile :)

This evening as I was going through the same ol' after-work routine of dinner and cleaning while trying to keep the boys happy until bedtime, I had a moment that made me stop and smile. A mommy moment, I guess. My 4-1/2 yr old son, Brendan, had asked to go play outside, like he often does these days. We live in a country setting, on 10 acres, so it's pretty safe around here. As always, I popped outside after a few minutes to check on him. And as usual, he was sitting in the back of our old pickup truck playing. Why it struck me any different tonight than any of the other countless nights, I'm not sure. But as I stood on the porch watching him play, I had to smile. He didn't know I was watching him, and I stood there quietly just looking at him. When did he get so big? When did he go from needed me every second, to being able to play in the back of the truck and entertain himself? When did that little boy get so independent? The every day grind of working full-time and being a wife & mom has really been getting to me these last couple years, especially now with 2 kids...and in my attitude I'm sure it shows. And now, here he is, he has turned into a big boy right before my eyes. So tonight I stood there admiring my son. Admiring his independence and his great sense of imagination, and how he could be so content entertaining himself with a stick in one hand and a water hose nozzle in the other in the back of the truck- his favorite playhouse. I got the camera and took some pictures of him in the truck. Being a scrapbooker, I know those pictures can tell a story, and will hopefully make a good layout! (lol). It's just one of those every day occurances, but I realized that even something so simple, as playing in the back of the pickup, is an important part of his world right now. And lately, I certainly have not stopped often enough to take notice of things like this. But tonight I did, and it brought me a smile :)

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

4th of July weekend

Let's see...I had high hopes for the 3-day holiday weekend, but like usual that didn't happen. But it was an okay weekend anyway. We ended up w/ 2 places to go on Sunday. My mom had a BBQ like usual, and our friends also had a party. We tried to squeeze in both, but really didn't get much time with our friends. We only get to see our "old" friends a few times a year. Sad really, as Joe & I just haven't made good friends around where we live. Not saying our friends here aren't good- but just that we don't go hang out & do things like we do/did with our old friends in St. Louis that we've been friends with for MANY years. It was kind-of a weird time this time. Something in the air just didn't feel the same as when we usually get together. Maybe we're all just too stressed and pre-occupied with our children now. Maybe we're all just getting boring! haha!

So after that we headed to my mom's house. Had a nice BBQ meal there, followed by the boys (my boys- Brendan & Adam and my sister's boys- Tyler & Jacob) playing on the slip 'n slide. They weren't quite sure what to do at first, but Joe had them lay on their bellies and he gave them a push. They loved it! My nephew Jacob, who is 2, especially loved it! He had a blast! Adam just sat on a towel in the grass since he's too little for slip 'n slide. Then as it got dark, Joe, Tim & Marc set off some fireworks. Then we drove home.

Monday was a moody day for me. I got flustered and needed a break from the kids. I had wanted to get some cleaning & organizing done, and felt my weekend time coming to an end way too quickly. Adam is at an age now where he cries when I walk out of his sight! I love the boy to death, but once in awhile I need to go pee or get something from another room, and that doesn't seem to be possible without hearing him scream. Brendan showed his little attitude a few times too many also. I don't even remember what else happened that got me upset, but I got in a mood and started cleaning the kitchen. When I get mad, I clean! Maybe I need to get mad more often! LOL I completely cleared off all the kitchen counters and wiped everything....behind the toaster, coffee pot, canisters, etc. Even lifted up the top of the stove and cleaned under the burners. I was determined to have accomplished SOMETHING...ANYTHING... before the weekend was over! Then we went out to pick up some steaks, beer, and fireworks. I was hoping Adam would go to sleep so that I could at least sit back and enjoy that, but go figure, he wouldn't sleep and wanted to be held. So we took him outside with us, and finally around 9:30pm he went to sleep. So, then we finished shooting off fireworks, and put Brendan to bed. By then we were exhausted too & went to bed.

Here it is Wednesday now, and I'm still exhausted. I just can't seem to ever get caught up on sleep. I guess this is true of most parents, huh?

Trying this again

Well, I had started a blog a couple months ago, but I neglected it for awhile, and it has somehow dissappeared! So, I'm starting over and trying again. I don't really know if anyone will ever read mine or not, but I guess just in case, I should introduce myself!

My name is Courtney, I'm married (since 1997) to my dh Joe. We have 2 sons, one is 4-1/2 and the other is 8 months old. I work full-time outside the home. Life with 2 little kids is a lot more work than I expected! LOL But I love them so much, and boy are they cute!

Right now I'm at a stage in my life where stress and frustration are running high, and time for anything is very limited. I'm seeking a way to balance everything out and return to the peaceful-stress-free-positive-happy person I use to be! (she's still here somewhere, I just have to find her again!)

I'm hoping to use this blog as just my general all-purpose outlet for whatever happens to be on my mind, or venting, or celebrating, or whatever may come!