Thursday, May 31, 2012

Oh, lets take a picture over here...

Jimmy and I took Raine to our town's Memorial Day parade. It was the first time either of us have been to the thing in like a decade but we figured, why not? Maybe The Boy will enjoy it. He didn't actually seem to care all that much.....Until the very end when he scoped some little girls balloon and totally did Hungry Eyes at it. Maybe he'll get more out of the parade next year when we can explain more about what the day represents and why we have the parade to begin with. 

At least I got these sort of cute photos with Raine though =)
Look at daddy! Oh, you're already looking....now I look like an idiot. 

Now I look fine and you can't be bothered. Pfft!

I'll just about sacrifice any amount of sleep though to get up and get ready for an early parade if I think he is going to have some fun.

linking up with Emily over at The Anderson Crew for Embrace The Camera.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Conversations With The Cuddler

{Conversations with The Cuddler posts are excerpts of conversations with my husband, James. It's a peek at the hilarious, sometimes bazaar, always nonsensical topics that come up around here. In short, my husband just says the darndest things.}

I'm not sure if I ever mentioned on this blog before that James, once upon a time, was practicing to be an orthodox priest. I know I know, is there anything this guy hasn't done? I come from a religious family but I'm not very familiar with some of the ritual that takes place in say the catholic faith or in Jimmy's case, eastern orthodox. So whenever I have a question in that regard I know he will have the answer. 

Last night we were watching our paranormal shows. It's our thing. We dig scaring ourselves ;)


Me: Can a paranormal group just perform a cleansing of a home like that? What would they need to perform a home cleansing?
Jimmy: Pine-sol. 

And there you have it, folks. You have a ghost and you want it out? Drown it out with the freshening fumes of pine-sol. 

I am beginning to wonder if The Cuddler is consciously thinking up responses and conversations ahead of time to make it into blog posts now. He's a bit of an attention whore like that. And he has been on a roll lately...

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Zombies Are No Joke

Do you wanna know what I did last night? Probably not but I'm going to tell you anyway, I stayed up till 3 a.m. terrified of a possible zombie apocalypse due to this little incident in Miami Florida this weekend. (I don't suggest you read it if you're sensitive to such things but I am sure everyone has heard about it by now) I fully expected to wake up to zombies all over the darn place. Oh yeah, I am so neurotic like that. I thought you knew this about me? ;)

It's not that I actually believe in zombies or anything. The possibilities unnerve me a little bit sometimes though. For instance, in 28 Days Later they weren't actual supernatural zombies but regular ol' human beings infected with the rage virus. Or how about like in this Miami situation where this guy was allegedly all hopped up on some weird LSD? (IF that's really what's going on here....I smell a cover up!) What if more people get their hands on this supposed evil LSD? Hmmm? Zombie apocalypse, that's what!

But to get to the real point (I'm not writing a whole post on my fear of zombies, I swear) I stayed up all night not worrying for my well being or even The Cuddler's. I worried about Raine. All. Night. Long. He would be totally defenseless in a zombie apocalypse. Could I protect him? I would damn well try but It's not like I'm Buffy or something! I stayed up all night debating this issue with myself. How would I keep him safe?

The moment they placed this tiny little boy in my arms I developed a super power. It wasn't anything cool like the ability to fly or even super human strength (yay Buffy) but it has been both a blessing and a curse regardless. I now possess the ability to look at any surroundings, situation, location, or predicament and visualize nearly ALL the ways that Raine could possibly be hurt or even killed. For example (and without getting into any gruesome awful details) when Raine is in the bathtub I know of up to 30 ways (oh yeah, I counted.) that he could hurt himself and 9 ways he could even die. These are just the random dangers he faces in the BATHROOM.

Kind of scary, huh? One may wonder how I can even stomach giving him a bath! Have you ever seen any of the Final Destination movies? It's kind of like that only I can sort of visualize or imagine up all the dangers that could harm my kid before they even happen. It's nothing to do with being psychic or overly perceptive though. It's just normal mommy paranoia......and apparently most moms go through it.

When this all first started happening I was sure I was insane. Why would I picture all this in my head? Was I sadistic? Did I subconsciously want harm to befall my child? Of course not. It's instinct. The instinct to protect our young and many moms have told me they go through the same thing. We don't think this stuff up because we are sadistic, we think it up to protect our kids from it. And it sort of just happens. Remember when your mother used to yell at you "don't run with those scissors!" or "quit jumping on the bed before you fall and break your arm!"? She was totally using her super power ;D

But how do we handle all this possible danger? As much as we want to put our kids in a protective bubble we sort of can't....at least, not without them totally resenting us some day for it. How does one handle all the fear and worry that comes with parenting without drugs and a good (and expensive) therapist?

I asked Jimmy last night why he doesn't worry for Raine like this. I couldn't understand why he wasn't tortured like I was with all this worry and the simplicity of his answer sort of shocked me to reality...

"Because I can't protect him from everything as much as I would like to. Sometimes things just happen and you can't always stop it so why bother worrying so much about it? You just do the best you can"

What a concept..... and he's right. I can't protect Raine from everything and you know what? Sometimes he IS going to get hurt and it might not always be a bad thing because he'll learn from it. As much as I want to protect him from every. little. bit. of. harm. I can't nor should I try because there are lessons for him to learn even in the danger. It's sort of enlightening. I'm sure every mom eventually has this epiphany too. I'm probably going to need a prescription for Xanax though.  

I suppose it's just that simple. I still worried about the zombie apocalypse though because  it is an apocalypse after all. Although, most my mommy friends thought I was a little One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest for staying up all night worrying about zombies. One friend agreed with me though....

.. and when we are prepared and no one else is, then we'll see who's laughing!


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P.S. I'm giving away a $25 Amazon gift card in Kristine's final big blogiversary giveaway over at her blog The Foley Fam so head on over and celebrate with us! =)

Image via

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Instagram Lovins

It's been a quiet extended weekend for us so far. Some picnics are planned and some have passed. We are thinking that we may take Raine to see our local parade tomorrow morning. It's been warm and muggy here all week and The Destroyer does not like it. He was the same last year too when it started to get too warm out. Yesterday we had a family birthday party picnic and Raine was just all sorts of grumpo. There was a lot of whining and crying and breaking my heart so we brought him home and put the hose on him. He played in the water and splashed in some puddles and I swear he's never been happier. I'm thinking if it's too warm tomorrow then we will break out the kiddie pool instead of standing in the heat for the parade. It appears he's just like his momma and prefers autumn and winter =)

On to some Instagram love this week....


1} That's Raine's new favorite toy. A simple yellow bouncy ball. Every morning he runs around looking for it calling "ball? ball?" which confuses me just a tad because that is also how he tells me he wants to watch his favorite cartoon The Amazing World Of Gumball. He will hold that thing all day and randomly bounce it here and there. I'm not going to bother buying all these crazy expensive toys anymore.
2} Opening and closing doors are Raine's thing. That's him shutting me out of the bathroom.
3} I have a serious jammie obsession. I would wear pajamas all day everyday if I could.  I covet jammies the way some woman covet clothes or shoes. I have two dresser drawers completely filled with just pajamas. These are my new current favorites ;)
4} We finally convinced Raine that wearing shoes isn't going to kill him but he was having issues staying in them for longer periods of time. They would just get generally uncomfortable for him and when I took them off I found they were pinching his toes even though they were a little big on him so I bought him these bad boys. They are pedipeds and they are supposed to be specially made for baby feets. So far he really seems to like them and that's already awesome in my book seeing as a month ago this kid wouldn't even wear any shoes. They better last after what I paid for them too!
5} A little champagne drink for Mommy and Daddy. It's been so long since we have had a night out (October 15th 2011 to be exact. Our wedding night!!) so we treated ourselves last night. I think I am getting older or just changing somehow though because we both found we just wanted to come home and go to bed and be near The Boy. It's just not what it used to be. The next step in our parenting evolution is probably breaking out the parcheesi...
6} All dressed up snazzy and out of my jammies for our night out =)

So, how is your weekend going? Hope everyone is enjoying their Memorial Day weekend!

Do you Instagram? Follow me: mrs_aerykssen

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FYI, Krista over at Saturated Canary interviewed me on her blog today. I feel so special =) Check it out here

Friday, May 25, 2012

Conversations With The Cuddler

{Conversations with The Cuddler posts are excerpts of conversations with my husband, James. It's a peek at the hilarious, sometimes bazaar, always nonsensical topics that come up around here. In short, my husband just says the darndest things.}

A little back story, Jimmy is allergic to fruit. All fruit. That doesn't stop him from trying to eat it though because he is also a GLUTTON. He's willing to risk being miserable because some fruit just "tastes so good". Thank god he's not deathly allergic because he'd be dead by now. Occasionally I will find him researching ways to avoid the allergy so he can eat something without getting all itchy and throat swollen....

Jimmy: ..... apparently my fruit allergy is directly related to my seasonal allergies so if I move to a place with no pollen then I may be able to eat fruit.   
Me: We are not moving to the desert just so you can eat guacamole.
Jimmy: But it's so goooodd!!

Caught in the act of gluttony

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Beware of cats and fresh brewed coffee

Sometimes you can't fix something that's broken. I have plenty of experience in this. Most recently my beloved calculator. Me and this calculator go way back....well almost five years anyway. I got it free with some credit card rewards points....as much as anything is free. It was one of those big ol' accountant-type doozies because I need to keep my finances legit, ya know what I am sayin'? *sigh*

Well anyway, one of my cats thinks it's absolutely acceptable to sleep on the computer desk. One morning last week I sat at said desk, fresh brewed cup of coffee in hand, ready to tackle a blog post when this evil feline decided that this moment was indeed nap time. In a fit of frustration (I'm a mom. My time is precious, cat.) I grabbed a water bottle and sprayed it at kitty cat to get him off my desk. Sadly, while making a mad dash to places unknown he left chaos in his wake. In the midst of that chaos my coffee spilled all over my darling calculator. I've tried everything to fix it. I've cleaned it, opened it up and even cleaned the inside, and I gave it a few days to rest and heal but it's not happening. Calculator and I? We had to say goodbye.

But I am not talking about calculators. I'm talking about relationships. Sometimes they break and we can't fix them. 

Have you ever been watching a movie where two characters just have this terrible personality conflict? I mean, they just can't get along and you wonder "why can't they fix this? Compromise! Move on! This is totally fixable". And in the end they usually do. Actually, they usually fall in love and live happily ever after but this is reality, people. Things don't usually work that way. In real life when you can't get along with someone it's nearly impossible to ever see eye to eye. Could be your fault, could be their fault, or it could be a combination of the two. Either way, even if there is a way to fix things it's not always as simple as trying to "compromise or move on".

What's really tragic is when it's someone you have known and loved your whole life. Be it a friend or family member. Could even be your mother.....not me, I love my mommy. Moving on...

Sometimes I just lose people. I can never really understand it and lately I find that I immediately point the finger at myself. I assume that it must be something that I have done to cause this separation in what used to be a close relationship. If there is jealousy I assume that I am the one who is jealous. If there is cattiness I figure I am misunderstanding the situation and/or I am being the catty, nasty person. I always assume that the hostility that is directed at me from this person must be associated with something that I have done. Then begins the process of trying to figure out what exactly I did wrong.

When I can't figure out what I did wrong that's when I set out to fix it. I start acting really nice. I try to be overly agreeable. I take all the responsibility for the fractured relationship and sometimes everything else too. I'm like a bumbling idiot all in the name of making it better.

But sometimes it's just broken. Like not-fixable-it's-probably-time-to-throw-it-in-the-trash-because-now-it's-just-cluttering-things-up-and-no-repairman-can-fix-it-either-type of broken. No matter how hard I try to be the bigger man it's just not even salvageable. And you know what? Maybe it's not my fault. Maybe it's their issue and if it is, there is no use in me beating myself up for something I may not even need to take responsibility for.

Every once in awhile, what's broken can not be fixed. 

I think occasionally "moving on" doesn't mean that the relationship can be saved by doing so. Occasionally it means getting on with your life and accepting the loss.

They say "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" 
I say "Beware of cats and fresh brewed coffee breaking your shiz" 

Image via

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

What's In A Name?

I am one grumpo lady today. I'm thinking it's because I am functioning off of 3 hours of sleep. Time ran away from me while I was working on a project and then Hello, 4 a.m. Anyway, seeing as I tend to swear like a sailor and be all sorts of cynical all the time when I am grumpo and I doubt anyone wants to listen to that mess I thought I'd leave you with this post from my old blog. I've gathered a few new readers over the last few weeks *Hi!* and a couple of you have asked how we came to naming our son Raine. I didn't realize I had never posted about it over on this here blog. So while I am off to stare at my son while he naps to remind myself just how much I love this tiny person (even if he did make me read "Five Little Monkeys" 37 times so far today and upon his awakening I will likely have to read it another 29 times before bed time..) and maybe take a quick snooze myself, I hope you enjoy =D

It usually starts with the sideways condescending glance and then I am asked: "Umm, ...... so how exactly did you come up with Raine?" 

That's what happens when I answer "What's this little guys name?". It takes some time to warm up to it I think but once people do, they are curious where we came up with it.


Honestly, I didn't think it was all that uncommon or unique. In fact, it seemed pretty common when we were scouring the Internet for baby names. Maybe not with our chosen spelling but common enough just the same.

It wasn't our first choice though. It wasn't even on our top ten list. Actually, I think I mentioned it once to The Cuddler around my fourth month of pregnancy and he promptly responded "hell no" and that pretty much settled that.

I had long ago chosen "Connor" if I were to ever have a boy. When I first found out I was pregnant I was pretty comfortable with the choice. Once it was confirmed that The Alien Invader in my tummy was indeed of the male persuasion I became uncertain with my choice. Was it perfect enough? I didn't feel it actually meant anything, that name. I wanted my son's name, the son that was never supposed to exist to begin with to have a name that MEANT something to me and to his father.

We searched high, low, and everywhere in between for the perfect name. I would love something and Jimmy would hate it. He'd suggest something and I would wrinkle my nose in disgust. At a week overdue we had a list of 10 or so names we intended on going into the delivery room with. We figured once we met our little destroyer it would just come to us.........WRONG!

They plopped this little purple gory monster on my stomach and my second thought (my first being “God, i love this gross little thing”) was "Crap. None of those names are going to work". Seriously. This kid didn't look anything like any of our chosen names. We had to start over, start from scratch and we pretty much had two days to figure it out.

Back to the Internet (thank you again, God for Steve Jobs and iPhones. ) and hours of searching when we probably should have been sleeping and bonding with the boy. Names were being thrown at me left and right. Nurses were making suggestions every time they made their rounds. Jimmy loved "Julian" but it just wasn't right. My mother was hitting up every baby name website. My brother was even looking through his video games for ideas.

With a little under twelve hours left to decide we managed to scrounge up a list of three names I was pretty satisfied with:

Waits (or Waitts): it's an old puritan name. I found it strong yet poetic. I worried that people would ruin it for me though when I had to explain it a hundred times and feared I'd be legally changing it after a year.
River(s): as in "River Phoenix" or "Rivers Cuomo" from Weezer. Again, poetic and musically influenced which was important to us but was it a bit feminine?
Raine: as in "Raine maida" from Our Lady Peace. Also means "abundance from above" which made perfect sense to me but I worried it was too common even if the more common spelling was "Rayne"


I couldn't decide though. I'd pick one and be just about to sign the birth certificate when I'd become unsure again. I was terrified I'd pick the wrong name.

Then the hat came in. James broke out one of the baby hats, wrote all three names on small equally sized pieces of paper, and in the hat they went. Jimmy, my mother, my brother, and I all picked out of the hat once......ALL four of us had pulled "River" out of the hat. I didn't believe the odds on that one. I thought maybe they were messing with me seeing as that was everyones name of choice so I insisted we all pull again......all four of us pulled "River" again.

Jimmy says the chances of us pulling "River" all eight times was 1 in 6,561.....I was told there was zero chance by three doctors that I would ever have children.

I named my son "Raine".....Seems awesome things happen when we go against the odds.


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Instagram Lovins

I skipped out on my Instagram Lovins post last week so this one is a little picture heavy. How could I know show them all?! You know I am obsessed....okay, lets get to it...


1} We almost bought this house. We put in a verbal offer (which was accepted) and everything. It is literally the most beautiful house inside that I have ever seen. I'm not even exaggerating.....and I tend to do that. It had some downsides but overall we were smitten. Unfortunately we hit some snags. It's in a building community and so there was some question if our 130 lb rottweiler would be allowed. While the owners looked into it we had time to reconsider some of our problems with the house. Then we found out that there was literally no way out of the finished family room in the basement. No exit whatsoever in case there was a fire and Raine was playing downstairs.....I don't want to even imagine. So that was a no go. 
2} Raine seriously loves his scout puppy.
3} Cheerios and fresh cut pears for breakfast makes a little boy very happy. 
4} My new multi blue hair!
5} Random family silliness.
6} Still loving his iPad learning games. He's getting super good with colors and counting. 
7} Raine is obsessed with yogurt. So much so that he can't even be bothered with a spoon.
8} All dressed up for Mommy's Day.
9} Once breakfast is done his bowl is the perfect place to stash his toys. 
10} Begging for "ball ball?" his favorite cartoon The Amazing World Of Gumball
11 & 12} Reading books with mommy sneaking tickles in between =)
13} Alphabet flash cards I made for Raine.
14} Loving my vivid blue curls.
15} Last week I did my very first guest post on Ashley's blog 5ohwifey. Check it out here
16} A little back yard play time.
17} This kid loves to rock with pillows. He's crazy about pillows in general and has no qualms about stealing them from everyone. He's a big time cuddle bug for soft things.
18} My daddy's guitar. One of the few material possessions I adore.

Kudos to you if you made it this far! Do you have Instagram? 
Follow me: mrs_aerykssen

Conversations With The Cuddler

{Conversations with The Cuddler posts are excerpts of conversations with my husband, James. It's a peek at the hilarious, sometimes bazaar, always nonsensical topics that come up around here. In short, my husband just says the darndest things.}

Me: I am GOING to get up before 8am tomorrow. I am GOING to work out and be ready at a decent hour.

James: Yes. I will get you up. You will hate me for it and you will be mean to me....... and then I will feel bad about myself.

Me: *scowl*

James: Then I will do the dishes.

What can I say? I'm not a morning person. ;)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Currently...



Loving
My new schedule. It only took me nearly two months to establish one but I think I finally did it. I'm finding that "to do" lists help me a lot to keep me on track and to set goals every day. Otherwise time just slips away from me and at the end of the day I find that I didn't accomplish squat. Now I am getting everything done that I want to with time to spare. It feels good to feel useful being home full time. I was convinced I would never get this down but I proved myself wrong. 

Thinking about
Raine and his education. I'm feeling inadequate as a teacher for him. Sometimes I worry that my approach isn't all that great and that I'm confusing him more than teaching him much of anything. It's hard to wrap my mind around how that little mind is working. How he's thinking and figuring things out. He's picking up things just fine though and it's probably safe for me to just relax and enjoy it. Typical mom worries, I'm sure. 

Anticipating
Pregnancy....mostly because I am a neurotic psycho. We don't plan on trying for number two until the end of this year but I am already terrified by the whole thing. Is it normal to be just as scared the second time around as you were the first time? I have my reasons though. My kid was almost 10 lbs at birth. Healing from that was *cough* an adventure to say the least. I think I'd rather cut my arm off than go through that again =/ .....*sigh* but Jimmy has yet to create a teleportation birthing device so I still have to do this the old fashioned way I guess. When I look at Raine though....totally worth it. 

Listening to
Jimmy's watching the news. I shouldn't say watching because he's probably actually sleeping. I doubt it's the dogs snoring that is making the house shake like this. 

Working on
Me. Things have been good but there are always things I can work on. Right now I am trying to work on relaxing and not getting so worked up about things. This may be something that I will always be working on but so far I don't think I am doing half bad and it's probably the reason I was able to establish that daily schedule I mentioned earlier. Baby steps. 

Watching
Sex and the City. Don't ask me why because I'm not finding it at all interesting. I needed something to watch while I work out in the mornings and this was the first suggestion from Netflix....again, don't ask me why. Netflix apparently doesn't know me at all. But I am the type that once I start something I have to finish it. Bargle. 

Wishing
James didn't have to work so much. I know I probably whine about this often and I so do appreciate that he has this job and all that jazz but I just wish I could see him more. I feel like it's been a week and the weekends just go too fast now! I think it's time I convince him that we need a vacation. ;)

So....what are you up to? 

This post was totally inspired by Danielle over at Sometimes Sweet.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Embrace The Camera: The hair strikes again...

These are horrible pictures, I know. The room was dark (will it ever stop raining around here?) and the flash was bright but it's not like the iPhone takes wonderful pictures or anything anyway. I just had to show Raine's hair and how long it's getting. For those who are new here, I am having some issues with getting Raine the "first haircut". I'm sentimental I guess ;D But look at it! I think it's adorable and look at those curls!



Curly like his mothers but without all the frizz!

I'm probably going to have to be sedated the day we hack it all off.....

linking up with Emily over at The Anderson Crew for Embrace The Camera.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Conversations With The Cuddler

{Conversations with The Cuddler posts are excerpts of conversations with my husband, James. It's a peek at the hilarious, sometimes bazaar, always nonsensical topics that come up around here. In short, my husband just says the darndest things.}


Me: Would you go on one of those rides with me?
James: What rides?
Me: Twisty turny roller coasters.
James immediately starts shaking his head before I can even finish.
James: No. Absolutely not.
Me: .....
James: I fear rapid acceleration.
Me: What?
James: Rapid acceleration and inertia.
....and as I begin to laugh hysterically
James: Inertia makes me fear.

He then went on for TWO DAYS about this fear which he has now labeled a phobia. Apparently he won't even go sledding due to this fear...I'm sorry *cough* phobia of inertia. It's not even necessarily the fear phobia of inertia he's describing! What has him so wound up is that he hates that feeling your stomach gets when inertia strikes. Like when you are in the car and you hit a bump or something. You know, when it feels as if the bottom of your tummy dropped out? 

I've been with Jimmy for going on 5 years now and I am just hearing about this now? I suppose I'll be the one doing all the sledding, or, I don't know, anything fun with the kids in the future!! ;D

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FYI: I'm also guest posting over at Ashley's blog 5ohwifey so head on over and check it out and enjoy her blog too! 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Home Is Wherever I'm With You


I was going to post a Conversation With The Cuddler today but it seems I have other things on my mind. Something pressing on my heart I guess. Heart? Me? Yeah, I got one too as much as I like to deny such things. And it's been a little sore lately as I seem to be searching for peace and my place within it.

We've been stressing out a little bit around here. More new changes at Jimmy's work landed in our laps last week and the house hunt seems to be a never ending struggle. We know that in a few short months all of this is all going to change dramatically and for the better but I'm not a very patient person and never have been. My frustration over something as simple as a little time passing has been creating this heaviness that not only I feel but that James and Raine feel too.

I know that my emotions can literally manipulate the other emotions in this household and if it's moving everyone's attitude into a negative place than that is simply not acceptable. I need to get it under control. Is it even a house that I want? I know that things are tight right now between the walking toddler and the 130 lb dog. The neighborhood is declining rapidly into drugs and other illegal activity that makes me worry for our kid. And frankly, I don't like this house. I never did but it was the best option at a time when options were few and things were desperate. A new house will solve all these problems and more.

But buying a house is just that. It's a house. A materiel possession. One that not everyone gets to have and I appreciate that we have been very blessed these last couple of years. Believe me, I do not lack appreciation being that I came from nothing growing up to working our way to having all this "something".

But the truth is we are doing all this working for "something" when we already have everything

I have an amazing husband who supports me and loves me. I have this adorable smart, healthy, happy little boy to brighten up every day.  I have my mom and my brother. So many friends and family. I have love. Lots of it. I have this life to live and so many things to enjoy while I am privileged enough to live it. If Jimmy lost his job tomorrow and all these material possessions fell away I would still have all of this and you know what? That is MORE than enough.

Realizing what is important is not the issue though. I know and appreciate what I have. It's just sometimes I fool myself into believing that these things I think we need will make things better for us. Once I justify "needing" something then the line between needing and wanting gets blurred. I already have everything I need, I really do, so I need to stop doing this. 

I have spent so much time stressing over these material things that I have forgotten that what I was really striving for was peace. I desire it yet instead I let myself get over emotional over such trivial nonsense. In the process I let my home fall into a dark mindset. All this over a house. Over finding a silly house. Because we are looking for a home.

But "home" is not some beautiful house where we will raise our family and grow old in. Home is in each other. Home is in Jimmy's stupid parodies that make me laugh and in Raine's silly giggles. Home is wherever my family is. Our location may change now and again but our home will remain in each other and right now home is here so here is where I want to be. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Grandma Knows Best

Skipping the Instagram Lovins post this week because today is Mother's Day!! And although I'm a mommy too now, to me, this day is about the big kahuna....my mommy. Because I loves that woman....even is she is just a tad bit inconsistent.

Growing up I was a rough and tough tomboy. I was the girl with the pigtails and overalls with the live frog in my pocket. I wasn't dainty in the slightest. All my friends were neighborhood boys which I beat up on a consistent basis. I climbed trees and played in the mud and if anyone even attempted to come near me with a dress then things got nasty real quick.

My mom isn't a girly girl by any means either so my tomboy status was just fine by her. She also had a very "kids will be kids" attitude back then. She hardly worried when we got hurt because it was part of growing up in her eyes. Scrapes and bruises were the norm. She'd patch us up and send us right back outside to get some more. She didn't baby my brother and I ever.

Not to confuse this with thinking that she didn't care because my mother most certainly loved us. Now that I am a mom I am sure she worried just like all moms are prone to do. She just knew that we had to try new things on our own in order to grow even if that meant that sometimes we would get hurt be it physically or emotionally. Stepping into the mother role myself has shown me that while it's not easy, it's a part of parenting that needs doing.

But here is where my mom is inconsistent. Now that she's a grandmother all bets are off. Heaven forbid Raine even bumps his head and cries for two seconds!!! Here comes Ma'ma to the rescue. I get a good lecture at every turn......"don't let him do THAT!" "Oh my god, he's going to fall!!" "What are you feeding him?!" When we were doing "Cry it out".....Oh. My. God. She would come down here (she rents the upstairs apartment from us) and scoop him up like we were torturing him. SHE was the one who had suggested "cry it out" to begin with!

And she thinks I don't see her sneaking him little treats. Chocolate and junk. She spoils the crap out of him. I point out that I didn't get none of this special treatment growing up but it doesn't matter. I guess being a grandmother comes with special privileges on spoiling and coddling. She's lucky I love her and if this is what being a grandmother is all about, then she's just as good at that as she was (and still is) being a mom.

Happy Mother's Day, Mom. I love you......but don't think I don't see you sneaking your grandson that McDonald's french fry.

Image Via

Friday, May 11, 2012

Why is it so quiet in here?

For, I don't know, the last month or so I have felt like there was something missing. I couldn't really put my finger on it. I'm happy. Things are going well. There wasn't any particular reason for me to feel as off as I do. Yet there it was in my head like an itch you can't scratch nagging the crap out of me.

Raine has had tummy issues today. I'm starting to think little man is allergic to tomatoes. BIG mess..... Anyway, I was changing his diaper for the 29th time and he was just fussing about it. Usually I sing to him and it cools him out enough to finish changing him. Maybe my horrible voice scares him into shock. ;) Who knows but it was not working today so I put the iPod on shuffle and he relaxed enough to dress him. We snuggled up for a little bit listening to the music and he fell right to sleep.

Then it hit me. I haven't really enjoyed music, you know, just listened to it in almost two months. Time for music has actually been disappearing bit by bit for over a year now. It makes sense really. Busy life, busy schedules, raising The Destroyer....who has time for anything after that? When I quit my job at the bar I basically lost what was left of my music time because let's face it, bars and music go together like lamb and tuna fish.....don't get it? Sorry, inside joke. Go watch Big Daddy.

Music is pretty much the driving force in my life. In who's life isn't it?! I literally grew up completely surrounded by it. My father was a musician and many family members too. I even married one but since having Raine Jimmy hasn't barely even touched a guitar. We always swore to each other that we wouldn't let "growing up" change us like this. I guess sometimes it's not always as easy as that.

I can't stand the thought of looking back in forty years and seeing that I lost who I was in the everyday grind. I want my kids to grow up in a home full of music and all forms of art like I did. I want Raine to learn guitar and piano from his dad. I want them to see that their parents are people too. Individuals with their own personalities and not just their mom and dad. In order to do that I think Jimmy and I need a little bit more individual alone time. God knows I could use a beer and some quality time with my iPod every once in awhile and he's going to play that guitar again if I have to force him by gun point. While I'm at it, I think I'll get a new tattoo....

If I let myself lose this part of who I am then what happens? What good will Raine learn from us if we aren't even "us" anymore. Right now I am just going through the motions really but I'm putting my foot down today. I may be happy now but if this mess keeps up then eventually we will just be miserable old misers.....okay, maybe Jimmy already is but I still have a chance, dammit!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Embrace The Camera: Bath Time

Jimmy usually gives Raine his baths at night. We have a claw foot tub and since my pregnancy my back hasn't really been right. Maybe it was the epidural or carrying around a 10 lb baby that last month of pregnancy but leaning over that tub just kills me. I try to bath him once in awhile though just so that I can enjoy this part of parenting too. 

Being that it's rare I get the job and we have a crazy amount of pictures of bath time with daddy, Jimmy thought he'd break out the camera and grab a few bath time shots with mommy for a change....







We need a stand up shower. That would make things so much easier. ;)

As always linking up with Emily over at The Anderson Crew for Embrace The Camera.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Decisions

I suck at them. I mean, sometimes most times I literally can not even make them. Decisions are my kryptonite. Present me with a decision and I melt into a panic attack ridden ball of whiny girl on the floor. True story.

Well, I shouldn't say all decisions get me down. I am a financial whiz so decisions in that area hold no intimidation. Other little things like deciding what to wear each day or how to raise my kid have little effect on me. Although occasionally they bring a little stress but I like to think that everyone goes through that here and there. We always wonder if we are doing the right thing. It's natural, right?

But tell me to make a decision on a wedding dress and I freak for three months! It doesn't stop there. I actually picked a dress, paid for it, and while I was waiting for it to come in I freaked out and decided it wasn't good enough and BOUGHT ANOTHER DRESS! I bought two wedding dresses. Not cheap ones either. Wanna hear something funny? I ended up wearing the first dress I bought anyway.

My anxiety doesn't always end once the decision is made though. I still look back on my wedding photos and wish I had worn the other dress or that I had picked another dress entirely. My bridesmaids must have wanted to kill me. I sometimes wonder how Jimmy handles being married to me with my hissy anxiety fits over stupid crap all the time. God bless this man and his patience.

Once the initial panic attacks subside I usually begin asking advice from every. single. person. I. know. I need to know their opinions on what THEY would decide if they were in the same situation. Here's the thing with this.....I usually already know what I, myself, will inevitably decide. Even if everyone's opinions differ from mine it's likely that my decision won't be swayed their way. It's at this point that I usually realize that I have already decided before I ever even panicked over the decision. It's possible that by fishing for others opinions I am simply looking for confirmation that I am making the right choice but that doesn't explain why most times I end up deciding the opposite of what their advice suggests to begin with.

Are you still with me, ya'll?

I'm pretty sure I'm funking crazy. 

What I am getting at is it seems that when I am faced with these decisions that cause me such turmoil, I have already (subconsciously at least) made the decision. But I still go through this whole process of acting out over it. I fret until it's over and then I wonder why I worried at all. Apparently I need validation from others that I chose correctly but if they don't agree then I ultimately find that I am okay with that too. I seem to find myself in the end regardless. 

In retrospect it just all seems so silly. None of these decisions that I make such a stink about are going to end the world if I choose wrong. A wedding dress?! So what, I didn't like it. I still married a pretty awesome (although mildly nerdy) guy. I probably should spend more time worrying over the fact that James can't wait to teach Raine how to "eat dirt".

So what's all the fuss about? Why all this talk about decisions? There's a small chance that we may be putting an offer in on a house today/this week. I'm obviously freaking over it. We have narrowed our options down to three that we love. The first option fell through because I felt it needed too much work for the price they were asking so we are making a play for option two. Of course I'm sitting here worrying that maybe we should focus more on option three.... 

Aren't I a stinker? ;)
image via

Monday, May 7, 2012

Raine's iPad Education

I caught a video of Raine playing one of his learning iPad apps (meet the colors by preschool prep company in case anyone was wondering) and I think he's getting pretty good at it. Four out of seven right isn't too shabby....or it could be that he just likes to hit the right side of the screen better ;) But I like to think he's learning from it because he's pointing out colors in other places. For example, he has a plush bowling set with various colored bowling pins. When I asked him this morning to get me the blue one he actually did. Each day he seems to get better and better. I think the interactive iPad apps are going to work well for us =)

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Instagram Lovins

Raine has grown so much this week. I'm not sure if it has anything to do with Jimmy being away for a little bit or if he's just hitting some sort of mental growth spurt. His vocabulary is out. of. control. I can't believe all the things he is saying! Unfortunately this means I am going to have to pay a little closer attention to my sailor potty mouth ;) and after all this time of trying to teach him body parts and feeling like this kid is never going to get it, he points to his belly today when daddy asks him to. I'm beginning to wonder if he actually does pick these things up but like his mother, is stubborn and will only do things in his own time not ours. He's certainly no slouch. He's smart but it's like sometimes he just doesn't let on that he is....wait, kind of like his dad! ;D But my little boy is growing up and I never thought I could feel such pride. I don't care how corny that is. 

Me? While Raine is growing it appears I'm shrinking. Down another 2 lbs this week for a total of 6 lbs the last three weeks since I started this healthier lifestyle I've got going on. The goal was not to lose weight but to be healthy but I'll take it either way. I feel great physically and that is what I'm most excited about. I was so sick of feeling like crap!


1} Me 6 lbs tinier....although that fun house mirror is making me look pregnant (That brings on a little baby fever...) not that you can even pay attention to me with my mom photo bombing this picture.
2} Missing Jimmy's toothbrush on Monday. So glad he is home.
3 & 4} Snapping photos of the boy for James while he's away.
5} Yay!! Daddy's home!! =D
6} I'm a little jealous of these curls my kids got.
7 & 8} I turned our unused iPad into a uber learning center for Raine. I downloaded probably around twenty apps for him to play with us and learn everything from numbers, the alphabet, colors, and all sorts of other things. So far it's been successful it seems because he's already catching on to color matching. He's a pro on that game.

Hope everyone is having a good weekend!!

Do you instagram? Follow me: mrs_aerykssen

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Conversations With The Cuddler

{Conversations with The Cuddler posts are excerpts of conversations with my husband, James. It's a peek at the hilarious, sometimes bazaar, always nonsensical topics that come up around here. In short, my husband just says the darndest things.}

While on Pinterest.....

Me: That's a cool idea. Fruit loop necklaces for the kids instead of those hard candies ones.
Jimmy: ....but I don't like fruit loops.

Apparently I need to realize that I am actually the mother of two.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Well that isn't very nice at all

I'm working on a post right now but I am having so much trouble trying to write because something has got me all worked up. So I thought why not post about it? Maybe if I write it out I can sort it out in my head rather than let it mutate and make me crazy.

Last night I couldn't sleep so I was late night stalking Facebook when I saw that a friend had commented on a picture that a non friend had posted.

By the way, don't you hate that Facebook does that? Shows you photos or statuses of people who aren't even on your friends list just because someone who IS on your friends list commented or "liked" it? Why even bother making your page private anymore? Privacy doesn't exist on Facebook.

Anyway, I had to take a closer look at this picture because I was flabbergasted! This person (non friend) had posted a picture of a wedding favor that looked exactly like the ones I had in my wedding. But here's the rub....I MADE my wedding favors. They were tea bags with tags that said "drink me" on them for our Alice in Wonderland themed wedding. Jimmy hand wrote our names and wedding date on each and every single tag. All one hundred of them. So where did this person find the exact same ones?! When I looked closer I realized this WAS one of my wedding favors.


It turns out that the person who posted it was working in the kitchen that day. I remember that many of the employees working at the venue we had our reception at were taking pictures and were all pretty excited to have a non traditional wedding to admire. I was flattered on my wedding day and I was even a little flattered that someone was impressed enough with our favors to post about them on Facebook. No major harm in that.

Here's what really rubbed me the wrong way. I started to read the comments to this photo (which was laid out right on my wall even though this persons profile is private. Go Facebook!) and my friend asked the poster if they had seen my cake and the poster replied that they had and that they actually have the fondant cheshire cat from my wedding cake....


One thing that destroys me about the wedding was that I was never offered any of my cake back. It's usually tradition to save the top of the cake to eat on your first anniversary. I was never offered any of it. When I went back a day and a half later to pay for the reception I asked if there was any cake left and was told that when I didn't bring it home the night of my wedding it was assumed I didn't want it and it was tossed. I was pretty heart broken over this for a bit but I didn't want to cause an issue about it because this venue worked out perfectly otherwise for us. I loved working with them and they did everything they could to meet our needs. So I sucked it up and moved on.

Now that I know that a piece of this cake is out there I am having some harsh feelings about it. Not to mention I feel violated in the sense that it was literally just taken from me. C'mon, I'm the bride! Shouldn't they just assume that I would want this? And it wasn't the only thing this person took from my reception, by the way.

I want to give people the benefit of the doubt and believe that they really did believe that I didn't want these things so since it was going to be tossed anyway then it was free game. My gut tells me otherwise though. But is it because I feel sensitive about it or is it really as wrong as I feel it is?

I'm trying to figure out my next step because now that I know that it's out there I want this piece of my wedding day. I'm not sure how to go about it though. Whether I contact the person directly or go to the venue itself explaining the situation. I'm leaning towards the latter but I hesitate a little. I don't want to get anyone in trouble.

Maybe I should just let this go. Maybe I am being petty. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Missing is Unacceptable


It's been a rough week so far....and it's only Tuesday. =/ I think I may have underestimated just how much Raine was going to miss Jimmy when he went to Chicago. I mean, I knew he would miss him but not like this. Days are fine but Jimmy works days so not having him around then is nothing new to this kid but night time? Oh. My. God. This kid will break your heart!

The Cuddler left Sunday afternoon and Raine didn't even blink. I thought "well, that was easy" and put Raine down for his afternoon nap. When he woke up from his nap we went about our routine with hardly a peep so I was pretty convinced that we were home free. That is, until we had dinner....

Now, we have been having some dinner issues to begin with. Ever since I left the bar and have been home more dinner has become a project. I think The Destroyer is having some issues adjusting to mommy being home for dinner time. I worked second shift so three days a week I was at work while Jimmy and Raine had supper. Eventually it just became a routine to feed Raine the same way the other four days of the week as well. Now that I am home we are trying to have dinners as a family. This messes Raine up though it seems. He flings food, acts out, screams, and simply refuses to eat as soon as I set a plate down to join the family. We have tried hundreds of different solutions and we have started to see a bit of an improvement. The night before Jimmy left Raine had a peaceful dinner with no hysterics.

So, he started off fine. Eating and giggling at me. Generally happy stuffing his chubby cheeks and then about 15 minutes into dinner his face just changed. It was like it just suddenly dawned on him that something was different. He started with peaking over my shoulder and then he was frantically looking everywhere. Eyes darting from one corner of the room to the other. Then he said it....."dada?".

It went to hell in a hand basket from there, folks.....hell in a hand basket. He started screaming, throwing food, reaching for me but then pushing me away to cry for his father, refusing to eat, and was completely inconsolable. I'm talking about big fat crocodile tears and baby hiccups, people. I even offered him goldfish crackers which I hate to do before he finishes dinner because they are his favorite thing and he will literally refuse to eat anything else once he sees that Pepperidge Farms bag. But nope, even that couldn't break through the severity of this meltdown. These are literally his favorite things of all time. They even worked when he fell and busted his lip open!! He had blood everywhere yet this kid was happily eating his crackers.....but they had no affect on him when it came to missing his dada.

I pulled him out of his high chair and just held him. Tiny arms clung fiercely to my neck as he buried his face into my chest. Every once in a while he'd ask that question again. "Dada?". The hardest part was when he climbed down off my lap to search the house. Peeking his head into each room asking again and again, "Dada?" My heart is still all busted up. It doesn't help when I'm missing Jimmy just as bad. There is no easy way to explain to a nineteen month old that daddy will be back soon. That's it's only four days.

Dinner was obviously over so I asked him if he wanted to take a bath. He perked right up and you wouldn't have even known he had been crying if it weren't for the occasionally sobby hiccup. He went running into the bathroom and when I came in to undress him things got tense again. Jimmy gives him his bath every night. I'm sure as heck not Jimmy. But he calmed down enough to get him in the tub but he kept looking passed my shoulder towards the bathroom doorway calling for his father.

Last night was better but more of the same. He's been super clingy. Not that I mind that at all. I miss Jimmy pretty bad too so it's nice to have The Little to snuggle with. Hearing Jimmy's voice on the phone seems to relax him enough to go to bed at night. It's cute to see the concerned look on his face though as if he's trying to figure out why dada's voice is coming out of this device. Today he picked my phone off the table and said "Hi dada"....Maybe he thinks he's trapped in there ;)

It's not all bad though. We miss The Cuddler like crazy but it's nice to get a sense of independence. I've always had Jimmy's help with Raine and other things around the house so I finally get to experience what it's like to do it all on my own and I am proud that I can easily manage it. To go from doing half of everything (we literally split all responsibilities around here. It wasn't intentional either. It just...happened. How lucky am I?) to doing all of it alone and succeeding  in that feels empowering. Having him away also helps me appreciate all the things he does do around here a lot more. Not that I didn't already of course.

I have to say, I don't know how some woman do it though. Take women with husbands in the service for instance. They are without their other halves for months at a time. I couldn't do that. Okay, maybe I could but I certainly have no desire to. Jimmy is only gone four days and missing him is kicking my butt a little. Raine's fits only physically mirror how I feel inside. God, it's only FOUR days! Suck it up, woman!

Regardless, I told him absolutely no more business trips unless he takes us with him.