Monday, December 28, 2015

Oh, I Have A Facebook Group For That!

I'm sure what mothers did before social media, and the zillions of "groups" that popped up with it! A lot of conversations with my husband start with, "I saw in this one group......" He's never really asked how many groups I belong to, and I've never really told him. You know how some people shy away from mentioning what their number is when it comes to sexual partners, I feel that way about the number of Facebook groups I belong to.  But I'm coming clean today, 61.......please excuse me while I crawl in a hole right now! 

That's right, I've literally got a group for pretty much anything! There are the support groups for moms who breastfeed or have babies that are also due in the same month as mine or just are stay-at-home moms. 

There are the ones dedicated to baby carriers, whether that be buy/sale/trade, fan pages, latest updates, or people who all like the same carrier but want to talk about other things....yes, that's a real group I belong to. 

Or there are the local swap pages where I can sell my shit I don't want anymore, and buy others people shit they don't want anymore, and then meet in a well lit parking lot, hoping it doesn't appear that we are doing a drug deal. 

There's a cleaning group, that makes me feel like a slob. A recipe group that makes it seem like my meals are shit. There's some prayer and hope pages that I love to follow and give me my daily dose of ugly cries. And then there are those groups that I don't think I've ever actually visited, but am afraid to delete, because what if I need to visit it at some point.

Is it ridiculous? Yes. But some groups have been so helpful, others are extremely entertaining just to read. But while being part of all of these groups, I've realized there are so many different types of people that join these. 

The Lurker
No, this person won't post a damn thing. You don't even know they are there unless you look at the member list. They don't like or comment on anything, BUT they tend to read quite a bit of what's on the page. 

The Drama Poster
This person will bitch and moan about pretty much anything. Rarely is there a happy post, and given the opprotunity will stir the shit just to see people lose their minds! 

The Politically Correct Poster
These posters tend to be very on point. Black and white, right and wrong. There is very little gray area, and although their post/comments are usually extremely helpful, sense of humor is lacking at times. 

The Chronic Poster
They might just post in the same group 50 times in one day. A picture, a comment, a question; they do it all! The group is their virtual family and they will tell you what is going on with them at all times. 

The Vague Poster
They never give the whole story and they don't reply to questions when people ask. Posts are usually, "Today couldn't get any worse," or "Pray." FOR WHAT PEOPLE!?!?! Don't peak my curiousity and then leave me hanging! 

The Scammer
Admins in groups are usually pretty good at filtering people out, but sometimes people slip through the cracks. These people will post shit that you are sure is not real. They ask for free things, give sob stories, or post some off the wall shit. My favorite was a thread that read, "I'm not a prostitute, I'm an escort and my husband is ok with it." Sounded more like an episode of Maury! 

So as I share this post with all of my "groups," feel free to share it with yours, because I know if you are reading this, you have a number as well! And no judgement to any of the different types of people, it is what makes the world go round, and the internet interesting! 

Friday, December 18, 2015

Finding Peace In The Snot

Sick babies are the worst! They cry because they have no other way to communicate they don't feel well. There are nearly zero medicines you can give them, because they are so little. They just want to be held, snuggled, walked around, bounced, or a combination of all of the above! But last night, around midnight, so I guess that means early this morning, I had a moment of peace.

While snuggling Jayce, snot running down my shoulder, I realized that I get this joy. As tired as I might be, I am blessed to be able to have a snotty baby and know that he'll snap back in a couple days. Some days it's hard for me to see this, and I want to pull my hair out. Some days I think, "Let me just get 5 minutes without you on me!" But I asked for him to come into our lives. There are many parents that don't get to snuggle their babies, because they were taken too soon or they are too sick to hold. So many parents whose worst fear is their baby getting a cold, because it could end their life.

Dealing with a stubborn 2 year old, a mouthy 3 year old and an angry 6 year old, alongside a sick baby, sounds terrifying, and some days it is! It might be the fact I'm getting older, and gaining more paitence, but I'm so unbelievably thankful for what I've been given! I'll take all of the attitudes and illnesses, because I can't imagine a world where I'm not their mommy! So during this stressful holiday season, when your children (or even family members) are on your last nerve; kiss them, love on them and be grateful that you can!

I know this isn't my typical light-hearted post, and it reads more like a long Facebook status, but I just think it is something that everyone needs to think of during this crazy time of year!

Sick baby snuggles!

Sunday, November 29, 2015

When Did I Become Frumpy?

Yep, this is me! No filter, no adjustments, no other angles/poses..... This is what I call my Monday through Sunday look. I snapped this look while waiting for Kayden to finish pooping so I could wipe his ass, and when I realized this is what I've become and that I wanted to blog about it. Hair out of place, because I'm not sure the last time I actually did my hair from start to finish. No makeup, no one has time for that shit. T-shirt from college.......that I graduated from 6 years ago. No bra, just a nursing tank, and yoga pants that are too big, but yet still so comfy, that I still manage to have a slight muffin top in! This is the hot mama my husband usually comes home to!

When did this happen?! When did I become frumpy! I still had my shit together when we had just two kids, hair and makeup always done. After Layne arrived, things started slipping. I found myself doing my makeup at work before kids came rushing through the door and had embraced a messy bun with headband look. But I was working full-time, so I had to wear real clothes daily.

I fell off the slope my first winter home I think. It was too cold to go out and do anything, so therefore I didn't have to get ready. Then add getting pregnant again and having Jayce, my look is yet to rebound.

So here I sit writing this is a spit-up stained tank top, pajama shorts and in desperate need of a shower. I always told myself, before kids, that when I had kids I wouldn't "let myself go" like all those other moms did. I wouldn't wear "mom jeans," and I'd be sure to get ready everyday so that my husband would have something attractive to come home too, not the saggy ass sweats lady.

Now reality has set in. I wish I could get ready every day and look like a million bucks, but it just isn't the case. The 20 minutes (maybe) I get in the morning without a child glued to me, I spend packing Dayton's lunch, unloading the dishwasher and HOPEFULLY having a cup of coffee. Once the kids are up though, I'm lucky to get actual pants on. It's so bad that when I put jeans on, the boys ask where we are going..... And those mom jeans I talked about, they're amazing! They squeeze in that pooch that my boys helped create while I was creating their life!

So here is my PSA!

To people who currently don't have children, no judgement please! Yes I look like a hot mess, but look at my kids' faces. They are SO happy! They don't care what I look like, they are just happy that I play with them, snuggle them and love the hell out of them! That takes priority over my current wardrobe. My husband sees how hard I work every day and has embraced my "uniform," besides I think he likes the fact I jump a little bit when he smacks my ass while wearing leggings instead of jeans, damn that thin material! I'll have time to get my shit together in a few years when they are more interested in their own things then hanging out with me, and that might be a sad day. But I'm pretty sure they won't look back on their early memories and think of how "frumpy" I was, instead they'll remember how much I loved them! So much, I let myself go!

And to the mommies out there! You rock those stretchy pants, baggy t-shirts and messy buns!

<<<As always, feel free to share! Let other mommies know they aren't alone in the toughest job there is!>>>

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The Power of Family Photos

I'm not one to get super excited about family pictures, if we're being honest, I hate them. I hate putting outfits together that somewhat coordinate, wrestling children into said outfits and then hoping nothing spills on them before the camera clicks. Then throw in the headache of hoping the photographer gets just ONE decent shot of the kids and that my double chin isn't noticable!

The past week has been a heavy one, both locally and abroad, and I realized how thankful I am that I pushed through my issues with family pictures and did them! Heaven forbid anything tragic happen to myself or my family, but no one ever knows what fate has in store, and I have this snapshot in our history forever to look at.

I want to share our family pictures for the simple fact that I love them! I have a lot of memories that come to mind when I look at these, and I think that's why it is so important to have photos like this. I think of the marshmallows we were bribing children with so that they would sit and smile, the melt downs that occurred earlier in the morning when I made the boys put pants on, or the breaks we had to take so that I could feed Jayce. I think of my husband whining that morning about the whole ordeal and making assumptions as to how they would turn out. And then of course, watching our, at the time, extremely pregant photographer carry a chair from her car on her head! These are all memories I'm so happy to have!

Personalities definetly shone through with these! Jayce was a complete ham, Layne was very cooperative (for the most part), Kayden wanted to be the boss and Dayton wanted to just run! 

A huge shout out to my girl Tori Bruno for capturing these moments, she was a dream to work with! Check out her page Tori Bruno Photography!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

I'll Blame Breastfeeding

Moooooooooooo! Yes, I'm still nursing Jayce like a champ! He'll be 6 months on the 26th and I'm still shocked and impressed that I've lasted this long! But, let me be straight with you, I blame breastfeeding for a lot of things!

No Aunt Flo
Is this a bad thing? No, not at all! But I do get to blame breastfeeding for this not currently being in my life.

No Hanky Panky
Breastfeeding does some jacked up shit to a lady's hormones (hints the no period), and thus no sex drive! To the women out there who haven't experienced this down side, I hate you in the most jealous way!

My Baby Loves Me
Like A LOT! Like can't be without me for very long without turning into a mini monster. Don't get me wrong, I love him, but sometimes it's a bit exhausting.

I'm Reluctantly Co-Sleeping
I'm not a co-sleeper, I personally hate it. I know it works for some people, and I wish it did for us, but I'm a zombie. The only way I get SOME sleep is if he can be hooked up to the tap at night. Is this a terrible habit for us? Yes, but I'm just coping at the moment. I'm sure he'll be sleeping in his own bed without a nipple in his mouth by the time he goes to college.

I'm The Cure All
If the baby isn't in my presence (like I got the luxury of a shower) and he starts crying with my husband, it must mean he wants to nurse, right? Even though he just did 10 minutes ago *eye roll*! He's fine!

No Bottles to Wash
Since I'm with Jayce 24/7, literally, he rarely gets a bottle. This seems like it would be nice, you know, less dishes. But say I'm feeling a bit overtouched for the day, or I'd like to get away for a couple hours (3 times in his entire life), it would be nice for him to take a bottle and not fight like mad about it. Oh well!

Boobs: The Daily Conversation
Whether I'm talking to friends about my boobs, my husband or my children, it seems to be a daily topic. Yes, I said my children, if the baby is fussing they tell me that I should go give him my boobie. If they only knew how part of me wishes some days I could detach it and literally give it to him!

Terrible Wardrobe
If I can't nurse in it, I don't wear it. So there goes 95% of my wardrobe for the winter here in Iowa! If you need me, I'll be living in tanks with zip-up sweatshirts till April.

Happy Baby
Seriously, as long as he has his two breast friends near him, he's the happiest baby ever! I guess that makes all of my "sacrifices" worth it!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Where's My Time Card?!?!

Hello, it's me again, the use to be consistent blogger turned once a month poster! Life has been hectic, everyone is well, but I feel like I'm running on "E" 99% of the time. This stay-at-home gig is no joke!

I was thinking the other day about how many "work" hours I put in. Let's do some math. I work 7 days a week, with my average hours being 7am till 7pm with children, plus an extra hour in the evening of cleaning up/doing things I couldn't do with them awake. Kayden has stopped taking naps (please, everyone, cry with me!), so there goes my 2 hour break in the afternoon. That all adds up to 91 hours in a week. Oh, let's also not forget Jayce doesn't sleep through the night yet, so I'm up 2-3 times at night.... add an hour and a half per day to my total. It comes to 101.5 hours a week. That's saying my kids follow a 7am to 7pm schedule which lately has been more of a 6am to 8pm.....

Wow, I hadn't actually done the math till right now! 406 hours per month, 4,872 per year.....  Someone that works a paying job 40 hours a week only works 2,080 hours a year.... I know that being a mom, whether working in the home or at a "real" job, is a 24/7 type of thing. I now understand why my ass doesn't get rolling in the morning without a cup of coffee, or why sometimes I need a lunch time beer, if you have/had 3 boys 3 and under, you get me!

With all these hours I put in, my house should be spotless, meals always homemade and children clean at all times. Well......none of that shit happens! Yes I clean, yes I cook, and yes I bathe my children......but it's never all done with 100% effectiveness!

In a single day I cook/heat up 3 meals and 2 snacks per child. Dress each child. Wash, dry and put away 1-2 loads of laundry. Unload  and load the dishwasher. Wipe the table down 1-3 times. Change 15-20 diapers. Pickup all toys twice a day (with assistance from my not very helpful children). Then if I throw in the variables of drop/off pickup from school, grocery shopping, scrubbing bathrooms, sweeping/mopping floors, doctor appointments, kids get sick, washing beds, and trying to go do fun things like the daily look of yoga pants, t-shirt, ponytail and no makeup makes sense then!

To all single moms or military wives that have to run the house solo for long periods of time, my hat goes off to you! Jason has been working out of town 4-5 days a week for the last month, which feels like an eternity! The round the clock gig has be in tears some days, I don't know how people do it for months/years!

Some days I just wish I had a time card and I could "clock" out at 8 or 9 at night, but I can't. I was up till 11pm the other night doing laundry so Kayden would have clean underwear and Jason could pack his bag with clean clothes to go out of town for work, only for the baby to wake up just before 1am to eat.

This all sounds like I'm bitching.....ok.....I am. I think that moms are completely underappreciated for all of the hard work that we do! We get Mother's Day (woot woot, 1 day!)........ where's the weekly parade of flowers for us or the hazard pay or handwritten thank yous for wiping ass?!?!

So while I sit here and soak in the 25 minutes of quiet that I'm getting while drinking a lukewarm beverage, I'll accept my job for what it is, a lot of fucking work!

Just because he's so stinkin' cute!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Yeah, I'm Late....Eff off!

I was born and raised in the world of, 15 minutes early was on time and on time was late! Nowadays.....on time is on time and 5 minutes late is still on time! I never understood parents being late until #3 and #4 came around. We were always on time with just 2 kids, but adding more into the equation, just increases the difficulty of the logistics! Here are some of the reasons why I'm late, sorry I'm not sorry.

Have you ever tried dressing 4 children, making sure they have clean diapers/underwear, and finding matching shoes? It's a pain in the ass, especially because Kayden and Layne have opinions on what they want to wear. I'm sure Layne rotates through the same 5 superhero/Mickey Mouse shirts, because a complete melt down occurs if he doesn't get to wear one, and it isn't a battle worth having! Add to the fact they are OBSESSED with doing their hair...... Have boys they said. It'll be easier they said. They don't care what they wear or how their hair looks they said..... LIARS!
Mickey Mouse is Layne's undershirt.....because heaven forbid we go without!
I mean this in the most literal sense of the word. We have to leave for pre-school no later than 8am on Tuesdays and Thursdays, it never fails that Kayden has to poop at 7:59am....and we're late! Or everyone but the baby is loaded, and I go to put him in his carseat and he's had a blowout. I wish I could say this has only happened once......and yes, I took a picture to show Kayden's teacher I wasn't making it up!

The List
There is a certain list of items that we can't leave the house with. Waters for everyone, snacks, extra clothes, jackets, cell phone, phone charger, diapers, wipes and takes me about 5 trips in and out of the house getting everything, because I keep forgetting something!

I hate them. Straps get twisted, kids grow which require adjustments, accidents happen in them.....they just frustrate me. Add to the fact that no one willingly gets in and straps themselves in, loading the crew up never goes as planned!

Yes, he gets an entire category! He HATES riding in the car, like screams the entire time! I've found the only time we get a quiet ride is if I feed him in the car and immediately put him into his carseat. No, I can't feed him in the house and then go to the car, trust me....I've tried! So I need everyone loaded and in the car about 15 minutes before we leave, just so I can feed him. Remember the poop situation from above.....yeah, still late!
At least he's cute!

To mothers of 1 or 2 that are still late to things. It's ok! I was a bit crazy/OCD with just 2 and refused to be "those" parents that are always late. Now, I don't give a shit. If we're late, we're  late. So don't stress! Helpful hint! I like to think that if I add "ish" to a time, it buys me an extra 15 minutes or so!

And to those of you that are expecting a family to arrive to something on time. Tell them the time is 30 minutes earlier then it actually is, because hopefully they will show up before it's over!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Honey You Need Jesus

That's what I was told by a gas station attendant after I told him that I had 4 boys, 5 and under. I laughed hysterically, because I was just shocked at that response. I normally get, "Woah, you are busy," or, "I bet they keep you on your toes!" But why does having a large family come with so many negative conotations from every onlooker? I've learned a lot by having more than the average 1.87 children.

I don't get embarassed by them....anymore!
When there were just 2, I'd turn red when they would do something to make people stare, like Dayton licking the floor of a store. Kayden handed the urinal cake to his pre-school teacher on Tuesday, asking what it was. She turned red telling the story....I laughed hysterically!

Cat herding should be a profession. 
I compare getting children from Point A to Point B to what it would be like to herd cats. I try to get 2 to go in the same direction and they scatter in opposite directions. Always!

It gets easier. 
I never would think that it would get easier with more little bodies around, but like anything, once you've done it once, every time after that is easier. I cried the first time I took Dayton and Kayden out by myself, they were 3 and 7 months at the time. Now I think of how easy that would be!

Sitters are rare.
Either finding one that is able to take on the herd and pay them accordingly to watch all of them or split them up amongst several people. I'm much too picky and paranoid, so we've been staying home a lot, which is okay, I do love them after all!

We get a private dining room!
We do go out to dinner from time to time. And 9 times out of 10, we either get sat in the FAR back or in our own private dining room. I love it. My children can be children, and I can put their ass in line without the party next to us giving me judgy eyeys.

It's like clockwork, every Tuesday the fridge and pantry are full and by Sunday, I'm scraping together something for dinner. I'm sure I keep several people at Hy-Vee and Sam's employed with the amount of money we spend there, but I've budgetted it in and make it work. The part that scares me to death is that they are boys, and will grow into teenagers that will clear out my kitchen.

Babies are addictive. 
I think once you survive the first three, number four is a breeze. I'm still not getting more than 3 hours of sleep in a row consistently at night, but I find myself thinking, "Hmmm I think I could do one more in a couple years." I then hear Jayce cry, and snap back into reality.

My husband is the bomb dot com!
Although he works a ton to support all of us and has been out of town a lot lately. When he's in town he's home to help with dinner, baths and bed. Lets the kids use him as a jungle gym and gives me a reassuring smack on the ass when I need it most!

The love is out of control!
Waking up to 4 kids who think you are the best thing in the entire world and want to hug and kiss you to death, it's the best feeling ever! Sometimes a bit overwhelming, but wonderful!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

1 Year Being A SAHM- Yeah I Use Acronyms Now!

Time for things I enjoy, like blogging, what's that? I'm pretty much running around like a chicken with my head cut off on a daily basis, but I've decided to give a recap of some of my realizations I've had over the last year.

Took the boys by myself to the Farmer's Market, hair cuts and lunch! #badass

I Do Yoga
I'm pretty sure the hubs thinks my wardrobe consists of yoga pants, nursing tanks, and flip flops; that's pretty much all he sees me in! But if I'm being honest, my wardrobe DOES only consist of those things. Post baby body hasn't quite snapped back yet, and by back, I mean there is still the occasional double chin and a pooch that mimics a fanny pack. But I really do do yoga now. We got a membership at the YMCA and they have child care while I work out. It's a little slice of heaven in my life!

Firsts Are All Mine!
By having the luxury of staying home with all 4 of my hooligans, I get to witness all of their firsts. Layne's first full sentence, Jayce's first smile, Dayton using a fork, Kayden counting to 13 without help; all of these are mine and are extremely rewarding. On the flip side....... I also get to be the first responder to Layne telling me he pooped with a handful of it to show me, Kayden pulling the screen off his window and folding it into an origami creation or Dayton screaming for 12 hours straight during a medication trial nightmare. The positives make all the headaches worthwhile!

Rare moment when Dayton allowed snuggles. 
The lion is having identity issues!

I apparently can't see him!

I'm A Stereotype
Quick, here are all the stereotypical things I do now! Discuss poop with friends. Call the doctor way more than I should. Geek out about baby carriers (really only Tulas, and I'm obnoxious when I see one!) Stroller stare, yeah it's a real thing, I've got to compare features! Take my kids to Target just to strap them into a cart and get Starbucks. Watch a lot of reality shows. Know nearly every theme song to kid shows and can tell you what will happen in each episode. Joined a zillion mom groups on Facebook. <- I possibly refer to those groups as "my people"

Boys who baby wear! Good daddies in the making!

Mom Comes Last
Some might see this as a negative, and I do at times, but in reality, I'm totally ok with it. I know that my kids will only really need me for a short time in the grand scheme of things. Since Jayce was born I've been child free for a total of 3 hours, he's nearly 3 months old, and I was a bag of nerves the entire time. I don't remember the last time I bought clothes for myself that weren't a necessity (nursing bra/tanks), but I can list everything that I've gotten the kids in the last 2 weeks! On the up side, I can make a tube of mascara last 6 months!

Symptom Checker
I've concluded that I am constantly waiting for a ball to drop with one of the kids. When we do checkups at the doctor's I give a list of every "symptom" that they might have for who knows what disorder or disease.

Acronyms Are My Favorite
I think it's a mom thing, but I use a shit ton of acronyms. I like to think that it is because I'm being more efficient with my time, but let's be real, it makes me feel cool! Here's my most used list!
SAHM- stay-at-home mom
TITW- Tula in the wild (It's a crazy Tula/baby-wearing thing)
BF- breastfeeding
BM- breast milk
EBF- Exclusively breastfed
LO- Little one
NIP- nursing in public

I think it's obvious that life currently revolves around my tits.

If only I could read him mind, I'm sure it would just be images of boobs!
Photo Overload
The amount of pictures I take is absolutely ridiculous. I have pictures of our children literally doing everything; sleeping, peeing, pooping, bathing, eating, crying, fighting, playing....EVERYTHING! I like to think that these will all be treasured memories......if they ever get off my phone!

Mom Friends
Being a SAHM can be super lonely at times. I literally go WAY out of my way to try to make friends with other moms. When someone asks, "How's your day?", only another mom can understand and appreciate my answer! It's possible I stalked a local mom on Facebook that I've never met, but heard she stayed at home and arranged for her to come over with her kids to play tomorrow. I've got like blind date nerves, and can only hope my kids aren't assholes! I can just picture her reading this and thinking, "This bitch is crazy!" and totally second guessing our plans!

Now I'm sure there are a lot more things that I could add, and I might. Who knows, if you check back later this post might be edited to add things I thought of at 2 am! I love staying home with the kids though. I remember wondering what I would do with all my time, now I feel like there isn't enough time in the day!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Living 24 Hours at a Time

Greetings from the land of sleep deprivation and toddler hell!

5 hours of sleep looks great on Jayce!

I've been MIA lately. Honestly, the moments when I've actually had time to blog (those rare moments Jayce is sleeping somewhere besides in my arms) I've been doing mad dash cleaning. laundry, spending one-on-one time with the other boys or, wait for it......taking a shower and maybe a nap (although that's rare)!

I hear all the time at the grocery store and Target (the only places I regularly visit a week), "I don't know how you do it! You are a busy lady!" Well yes, I am busy. But what I do isn't any sort of miraculous feat, I do what I have to do and that is all. Let me be honest though, I lose my mother effin' mind on the daily! I've adopted a new mantra that I tell myself multiple times a day.

Live 24 hours at a time.

I can't look at the long term very often because honestly it scares the shit out of me. What are we doing next week? I don't know, we will see what happens when we get there. The only thing I know ahead of time are doctor appointments. But when I think really long term, we'll have at least 3 kids in sports/activities, homecomings and proms, driving, dating....ALL AT THE SAME TIME! Now that is scary as hell!

If I don't live 24 hours at a time I hold grudges on my kids, yeah it's a real thing. Monday I got slapped in the face twice at the library and my glasses ripped off while trying to be a cool mom and take them to superhero story time (thanks Kayden and Layne). Well my glasses are still crooked and if I didn't leave Monday when the "time expired," I'd still be pissed at them that every time I look down and my glasses fall off my face.

At times Kayden and Layne play nice together....for 30 seconds!
Jayce and I wouldn't be friends the day after he was attached my nipple for 24 hours straight during a growth spurt, but I forgave and moved on.

Dayton starts every day with a clean slate, despite him beating himself up all day and throwing a fit the ENTIRE day at school nearly every day for the last month. Even after he threw the biggest fit at the Durham museum during Railroad Days resulting in our entire time there being 25 minutes. The next day we started fresh.
In between screams, because he can't go outside. Pretty sure his jibberish he screams consists of, "Fuck you mom!"

Jason told me after bedtime on a day that was particularly rough for me, "Well, you made it through another day!" And that I did.

I really love my children , but with a newborn, two toddlers and an almost 6 year old that seems possessed at times, getting through the day is the biggest goal I can set.

This trying time when they're all little at the same time won't last very long in the grand scheme of things. I find myself constantly reminding myself of this. So if I can make it through this 24 hours, then tomorrow is full of possibilities!

To every new mom, soon-to-be mom, or anyone going through a hard time; live just in 24 hour increments. Every day will get better, even if it doesn't currently seem like it!

*This literally took me a week to write. As I sit here on the kitchen floor next to Jayce in the bouncy, I have Dayton thrashing around on the living room floor for reason unknown, Layne trying to take the DVD player apart, and Kayden just got done telling me that poop was coming out of his butt. #thisismyreality

Friday, June 19, 2015

Postpartum Realities

Life with a newborn is hard. Anyone who says it isn't, is lying. I've always said that blogging is my therapy, so here we go!

I think too often people assume a postpartum woman is to act and look like what is portrayed in the movies. Turns out that shit is fake, so let's be real!

Ready for some postpartum verbal diarrhea?

I lost all sense of modesty when I was laying naked on an operating table in front of 15 people.

I was grossed out when they handed me the baby all covered in goo.

I regret saying it was okay for a student nurse to observe everything both during labor and while we stayed. She was terrible and slow and didn't know what she was doing. I just wanted MY nurse, not her.

The ride home was the most painful and equally exhausting thing ever.

I forgot that babies have no sense of a schedule.
The faces when he is waking up are hilarious though!

Breastfeeding is a lot of work. We are currently successful, but it's only because I'm hard headed and determined to make it for awhile. PLUS with me not working, I don't want to have to budget in formula.

I'm an exhibitionist. Nursing with a cover is next to impossible, and it's fucking hot out, so I say screw it!

I don't recognize my boobs. They were so pretty before, and now, well...... I didn't know certain parts could get so large.

Even though I'm 5ish pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight, I'll be in maternity clothes for a bit and I'm a bit annoyed by it. But I remember it took a couple months for my c-section "overhang," that skin that resembles a string pressed into dough, to flatten a little. So for now, I'm embracing it!

Tummy tucks should be routine with all c-sections. I mean, they are already cutting into you!

Stretch marks look worse when they aren't stretched out on a big belly.

Cluster feeding is the Universe's way of testing my endurance.

I'm a weight Nazi. Getting him to birth weight was like winning a gold medal!

I can somewhat successfully function on a total of 5 broken hours of sleep.

The inventor of baby swings is a genius.

If it wasn't for babywearing, I'd never accomplish anything.

Jayce spends 90% of his day on my chest.

This was happening while I was writing this. 

The first 2 weeks of baby plus siblings is hell on Earth. Literally.

Cute moments did occur though!

I cried every time the baby cried.

I cried every time Layne cried because I couldn't pick him up.

I cried over literally nothing....a lot. But I'm proud to say I'm 7 days tear free. Do I get a some sort of chip?

Jayce slept on my chest until 3 nights ago. Please, report me to the "Back Is Best" police. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Getting peed and pooped on is a regular thing. I even rocked a pee soaked t-shirt through Target.

I'm grossed out the a woman's body can bleed for so long and still be alive.

My libido disappeared. Yes, I still have 3ish weeks to wait according to the rule followers, and that's fine. My desire is literally zero.

Cleaning in general....overrated.

The first day home by myself and all the children, I felt like a bad ass everyone survived and made it to bedtime, including myself!

Taking a shower is a luxury that I have to schedule around naps and feeding times.

Some days, I forget to brush my teeth.

I'd like to hire a nanny. Actually a nanny intern, because it's not a paying job. That could be a real thing, right?!

I know I need to cherish all the snuggles, but I look forward to the stage when crying, pooping, and sleeping aren't all that he does.

99% sure we are done with babies. That damn 1% though!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Jayce Thomas' Birth Story

On Tuesday, May 26th we arrived bright and early to the hospital for my planned c-section. Since I didn't go into labor ahead of time, I wasn't getting the VBAC that I was hoping to have. This was a whole new experience for me, but I enjoyed the fact that I could do my hair and makeup leading up to his arrival. They got us checked in, changed into my "sexy" gown, and then my anxiety set in. My makeup was a total loss at that point!

One thing that I forgot about my previous c-section was the million fluids they pump into you before, during and after. With my lovely tendency to retain water while pregnant, every ounce they pumped into me went to my face, fingers and feet.

At 9:15am my wheelchair arrived and I got wheeled into the O.R. I sat on the table, hunched over and got my spinal placed. (It hurt like a bitch!) I then laid on the table. This is when the awkward factor set in. And for anybody that is modest, don't have babies, Here I laid, in a cold operating room, while nurses lifted my gown (in front of every person present), placed my catheter, and then washed my entire stomach. I kept asking if they were going to put up the curtain, because I could see everything. They reassured me that they would right before they cut into me.....I guess that was suppose to make me feel more comfortable.

So then my doctor came in and they got started. I felt the tugging and pulling, and then it got more intense. I told the anesthesiologist that my chest was hurting, that's when she told me, "Well that's because the doctor is on your chest." Ummmmmmm WHAT?! I then here the doctor ask for the forceps. Forceps in a c-section? What the hell was going on on the other side of that curtain?!

I continued to complain about my ribs, to the point that I was in tears. But after what seemed like an eternity I heard, "Are you ready for him?!" Then the doctor pulled Jayce out and held him over the curtain. He was blue. I was panicking. The doctor shook him and told him to wake up, no response. He was then quickly handed off to the nurses where they put an oxygen mask on him and started to rub him down trying to get a cry out of him. I was bawling at this point, and feeling helpless. Finally we heard a cry. I never thought I would be so happy to hear a baby cry! This whole thing played out in less than a minute, but it felt like forever! They say he wasn't breathing because of the stress of the delivery.

Jason cut the cord. I got to snuggle him by my face while they closed me up. Afterwards we headed into recovery. That's when I was told that Jayce was completely stuck in my ribs on the right side. His butt and feet were lodged up there. Jason saw the doctor pretty much on top of me during the delivery trying to push him out. When my doctor came to visit me later on, there was a genuine concern about if any of my ribs were broken. I had to do the deep breathing exercises, which hurt like hell, but in the end, my ribs were fine. I was just a bit beat up!

I'm not upset that I didn't get the birth that I thought I wanted, because I'm just happy that in the end we had a healthy baby boy!

Jayce Thomas Snyder
May 26, 2015
7 lbs 9 oz
20.5 inches

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The FINAL Post! - 38 Week Pregnancy Update

38 weeks and my final pregnancy post! I have 6 days until my scheduled c-section UNLESS I go into labor on my own early. Needless to say, I'm trying every self-induction technique possible! Anyone got some? This pregnancy has flown by and I'm over the moon to get this little guy here sooner rather than later! Not only is this my last pregnancy update, this is my last blog post for awhile (keep reading, I'll explain!) Thank you to everyone that has followed the journey of this growing bump!

I feel smaller, if that's even possible!
Weight Gain/Loss: 30 pounds.....I've lost a couple over the last week. 
How Far Along: 38 Weeks 1 Day
Fruit of the Week: Baby is the size of a watermelon. 
Baby Buys: Nothing for the baby, but my husband got to have a mini shopping spree at the Polo store. He was in need of some new summer clothes, and I'd like for one of us to look nice in hospital pictures! So he got some shirts and new shorts, only to have them packed into his bag!
Movement: Constantly and it's come to the point that they aren't so cute anymore. Every movement is like, "Shit that hurts!"
# of Centimeters Dilated: Haven't gotten checked since 36 weeks, so who knows!
Position: Head down and apparently he's dropped some. I haven't really noticed, besides the fact I can't cross my legs and my waddle is becoming pretty epic!
Cravings: Nothing much. I've lost most of my appetite, but force myself to eat. I don't think crushed ice fills any food group! 
Shit that Sucks: Where to begin! I'm constantly symptom checking for, "Is that a contraction!?" I've had constant cramps when I do anything that isn't laying down, apparently that is because he is lower now. I can't get comfortable in bed/on the couch/in the recliner. Bathing other children with a watermelon in your stomach is the most exhausting thing ever!
Struggles: Touching my feet! When I was pregnant with Layne, I never measured more than 36 weeks (hints why I was induced and he was just a peanut!) and he never dropped.  Well now I'm measuring 38 weeks (yay for a bigger baby!) and he's dropped so I literally can't touch my feet. Putting lotion on feet or socks on, is now requiring the assistance of my husband. It's pretty pathetic! 
Successes: I have several things to celebrate! I've stocked my freezer with all sorts of things, so that is a huge check mark on to-do list! I also prepared myself! My hair got colored, eyebrows/face got waxed, fingers and toes were scrubbed, massaged and painted and finally I got a full hour and half massage! It was seriously amazing!
Mood Swings: I'm snapping (yelling/screaming) a lot! I feel guilty about it afterwards, and I think some of it is hormone based and the other is just being tired. It's mostly aimed at our 2 year old who is on this rampage lately and wants CONSTANT attention! I get it, and I know why he is acting the way he is, but I just don't have the energy to entertain him the way he would like (playing chase, wrestling, etc.) I've promised him lots of wrestling, chasing and snuggling after the baby gets here and I'm healed up!
Milestones: Last doctor's appointment was yesterday! It was sort of weird not booking my next one as I left!
Inside the Hormonal Brain: I've decided that I'm taking a break from blogging for awhile. Considering it my "maternity leave." Not because I don't love it, but because I'm so unbelievably tired, and that is only going to increase in less than a week. I MIGHT post some announcement pictures on here once he arrives, but I will just have to play it by ear. Not making any promises. I feel guilty about not getting my Freezer Meals: Breakfast and Sides post not put together. I made them, and even took pictures, but the effort it takes to put it all together and post it, makes me tired even thinking of it. I apologize to anyone that I was looking forward to it. Maybe I'll get to it later! So for the next month or so, my consistent blog is on leave!  

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Filling the Freezer: Dinner Edition

Okay, so I'm down to the wire for prepping for this baby! My little boys went to grandma's for 48 hours, so I was on the prepping rampage and that started with freezer meal preps! 

When I had Layne I made a bunch of freezer meals, but didn't try them out ahead of time. Most of them sucked, and I was mad I had wasted my time and money. Since then, I've been trying a variety of recipes ahead of time, and have found what has been the easiest and tastiest. I was going to do breakfast, snacks and dinners all together, but it got really long. So look for a breakfast and snack edition in the next couple days!

I was a teacher before staying at home, so I've learned that recreating the wheel is exhausting! So some of these recipes I got from a variety of other people and put my own twist on, and some are all mine. 

Let me preface this with saying that I have to make sure that I have enough food for 3 hungry boys and my husband, plus myself, (and MAYBE leftovers for a lunch) so feel free to downsize the portions to what would work for you! Also, there are probably healthier and more complicated ways of making sauces and spices, but my goal in this whole thing was for it to be easy! I'm busy, so time is precious! Finally, we buy ½ a cow and ½ a hog every fall, PLUS we hunt deer, so the only meat I ever have to buy is chicken. No we are not friends of PETA, but we save a lot of money by doing this, so that is why you see funny packaging for our meat!

Please Pin the hell out any of the recipes that you want! I officially feel prepared (minus my hair and nails being done) for this baby!

Also, there are some helpful tips at the bottom of this post! Be sure to check them out!

Before You Start
-Clean out your freezer! Trash old, freezer burnt stuff and organize it so that you know what you have in there! 
-Labels! If you feel like you need to be crafty for your freezer, feel free to! I used my son's construction paper, packing tape and a sharpie! But be sure you label them some how! 
-Get freezer storage items (freezer Ziploc bags, plastic containers, aluminum pans and aluminum foil) and slow cooker liners! I'm a heavy slow cooker user normally, and had never used a liner before. Needless to say, my mind was BLOWN! 


2 pounds of ground meat (I use one of deer and one of beef)
Minced onion
Minced garlic
2 packages of taco seasoning

At time of use:
Toppings (lettuce, cheese, salsa, sour cream, etc.)

Directions: Brown your meat. Sprinkle with some minced onion and garlic. Drain. Add taco seasoning while following the directions on the package. Once the mixture is cooled, place in freezer container, label and freeze.

To reheat: Thaw in container in the fridge overnight or on the counter during the day. Put meat in skillet and heat on low/medium heat until warm throughout. Serve on tortillas with your choice of toppings.  

***The Ziploc brand medium square container will hold this quantity perfectly!

BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches
1 ½-2 pounds of pork shoulder steak/roast
1 cup of brown sugar
1 small onion chopped
1 ½ cup of barbeque sauce (more is ok!)
3 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

At time of use:
Hamburger buns

Directions: Label your freezer bag with cooking instructions. Put everything into a freezer bag and mix around. Lay flat to freeze.

To cook: Thaw bag of ingredients overnight in fridge. Place in slow cooker (use a liner for easy cleanup!). Cook on low for 7-10 hours. Keep meat in cooker and shred with 2 forks. Let meat sit for 10-15 minutes in sauce before putting on buns and serving.

Meaty Marinara for Spaghetti (or anything else!)
2 jars of spaghetti sauce
1 pound of ground meat (I use hamburger or deer)
Minced onion
Minced garlic

Directions: Brown your meat. Sprinkle with some minced onion and garlic. Drain. Add both jars of sauce and then transfer to freezer container.

To reheat: Let sauce thaw in the fridge overnight or on the counter during the day. Pour sauce into saucepan on stove and heat on low/medium heat until warm throughout.

***The Ziploc brand large round containers holds the entire batch of sauce.

3 pounds ground meat (I do 2 of beef and 1 of deer)
Sleeve of crackers crushed (I use saltines)
4 eggs
Splash of Worcestershire sauce
Minced onion
Minced garlic
¾ cup brown sugar ( ¼  for mix and ½  for topping)

Directions: Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Spray some cooking spray into an aluminum pan. Spread mixture evenly into the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle with ½ cup of brown sugar. Cover with aluminum foil, label and freeze.

To cook: Thaw pan in fridge overnight. Preheat over at 375 degrees. Spread an even layer of ketchup over the top of the meatloaf. (Yes, over the brown sugar, trust me!) Bake for 45 minutes or until the center of the meatloaf is no longer pink. 

Chicken Enchiladas
3 cooked and shredded boneless skinless chicken breasts
8 oz of cream cheese
2 cans (4 oz. each) of diced green chilies
8-12 tortillas
2 cans of mild green chili enchilada sauce (I like Old El Paso’s)
8 oz of shredded Italian mix cheese

Directions: Heat cream cheese in a microwave safe bowl until very soft/melted. Add cream cheese to shredded chicken and mix thoroughly. Add both cans of green chilies and 1 can of enchilada sauce, then combine throughout. Spray aluminum plan with cooking spray. Assemble enchiladas by adding filling to the tortillas and then tightly rolling. This recipe will make 8-12 enchiladas, depending on how full they are filled. Place additional can of sauce into a Ziploc bag to be used at time of use, along with the shredded cheese. Cover, label and freeze. 

To cook: Thaw pan in fridge overnight. Preheat oven at 375 degrees. Pour bagged sauce over the enchiladas and top with the cheese. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until heated throughout and cheese is bubbly.

 Tator Tot Casserole
3 pounds of ground meat (I use 2 of beef and 1 of deer)
Minced onion
Minced garlic
2 cans of cream of mushroom soup
8 oz of shredded cheddar cheese
Bag of tator tots

Directions: Cook ground meat with a sprinkle of minced onion and garlic. Drain. Return meat to pan and mix in both cans of cream of mushroom soup. Spray the aluminum pan with cooking spray. Spread the meat mixture on the bottom of the pan. Layer the cheese over the meat and then place tator tots on top as the final layer. (If you put the tator tops on the meat and the cheese on top of them, they will not get crispy when cooked.) Cover, label and freeze.

To cook: Thaw in fridge overnight. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cooke uncovered for 45 minutes or until warm throughout and tator tots are crispy.

Chicken Fajitas
2 green peppers, sliced
1 onion, sliced
3 chicken breasts
½ cup chicken broth
1 taco seasoning packet
1 tsp chili powder (or Cayenne if you want some more heat)
½ tsp paprika

At time of use:
Toppings (sour cream, salsa, guacamole, etc.)

Directions: Label freezer bag with cooking instructions. Add all ingredients to the freezer bag and seal. Lay flat to freeze.

To cook: Thaw in fridge overnight. Place in slow cooker on low for 5-6 hours. Shred chicken and stir. Let sit on warm for 10 minutes before serving.

Chicken Spaghetti
3 cooked and shredded boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 ½ cups chicken broth
1 small onion, chopped
1 stick butter
1 small can sliced mushrooms
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1 pkg. spaghetti
8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese

Directions: Cook spaghetti noodles according to the package. Sauté onion in butter.  Add soups, mushrooms, garlic salt, and 1 1/2 cups chicken broth.  Spray aluminum pan with cooking spray. Add spaghetti & chicken to the bottom of the pan, pour soup mixture on top.  Cover with shredded cheese. 

To cook: Thaw in fridge overnight. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Chicken & Rice
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into chunks 
2 cans cream of chicken soup

1 can full of milk
1/2 can of water
2 cups uncooked Minute Rice
1/2 tsp garlic salt

Directions: Spray aluminum pan with cooking spray. In a bowl mix all ingredients EXCEPT chicken together. Pour mixture into pan. Put chicken on top of the rice mixture. Cover, label and freeze.

To cook: Thaw in fridge overnight. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake uncovered for 50-60 minutes or until chicken is cooked throughout. 

1 batch of Meaty Marinara 
1 package of oven-ready lasagna noodles (I swear by these!)
1 tub of cottage cheese
1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese
2 packages of Italian mix shredded cheese
2 tablespoons parsley
1 tsp garlic salt

Directions: Spray aluminum pan with cooking spray. Mix cottage cheese, Parmesan cheese, 1 bag of shredded cheese, parsley and garlic salt together in a bowl. Spread a layer of marinara on the bottom of the pan, followed by a layer of noodles and cheese. Repeat this order until pan is full. Be sure to end on noodles with sauce over it. Cover the lasagna with the last bag of cheese (about a cup or so). Cover, label and freeze. 

To cook: Thaw in fridge overnight. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until everything is bubbly and warm.


  1. Anything that you make that calls for cooked chicken/shredded chicken- put the raw chicken in the slow cooker with a couple cups of chicken broth for 5-6 hours. I put 2 recipes worth in in the morning, ran errands, and when I came back they were ready to go!
  2. Make a grocery list. I made all of these over 2 days (not full days by any means!). The first day I made everything that I could with what I had on hand, which is great since I had canned items that needed used! After day one I made a list of everything else I needed. In hindsight, I wish I made a list of EVERYTHING, crossed off what I had already and then went to the store and got the rest. If I had done that I would have knocked everything out in a couple hours. 
  3. Do your dishes as you go. If you don't, you will end up with no bowls to use or spoons to stir with!

Look for Filling the Freezer: Breakfast and Snack Edition coming soon!!!