Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Kerrrr-ACK!

Kole's 5, going on 6, months old right now.  That means for the last 5, going on 6 months, I've been worried about running the perfect life.  I've seen people do it or at least make it look like their doing it and I've though "Am I supposed to do that?"   I've put this ridiculous amount of stress on myself.  I've given it a name.  The Stress-Monger.  The stress-monger consisted of feeling like the house had to be spotless.  Trying to get Kole to sleep through the night.    Taking over the cooking.  Losing weight.  Giving service.  Fulfilling my calling.  Enhancing personal relationships.  Reading new books.  Teaching Kole- everything!  Keeping the hamper empty.   Writing blogs.  It was getting out of hand.  I felt like since I'm no longer financially contributing to our family I need to do everything else and do it perfectly and do it smiling.  I've never been that person before. I felt it all slipping away bit by bit. And then last night... it imploded.  Or exploded.  Or summited.  Or reared.  Something.
I got sick.
It's happened before.  When I hold Kole too much it hurts my back.  Yesterday a woman came to photograph our home for a new listing.  She was here for 40 minutes and I held Kole that whole time since we were going room to room.  I can't hold him for any extended period of time.  He's just too much weight.  (Not in a bad way Koley-Flower.  Mommy loves you.  You're my man.)  Last night my back hurt so bad it made me have to throw up.  I was laying awake in bed.  In pain.  In between puke sessions.  Listening to the stress-monger yell at me.  I was going though all this in my head and trying to rationalize everything.  I was mentally beating myself up.  It's been a routine thing.  I know.  Sadist.  It was 3:30 am.  I still hadn't gone to sleep.  I was still in crippling pain.  I decided to take a shower.  I was getting in the shower and said "Kole's going to be up in no time."  My normal response would have been something like "You didn't get any sleep." or "You wasted all night staring at the clock and complaining about your back." or "You should have taken a shower hours ago. Maybe then you could have slept."  I was deflated.  Beaten down.  Exhausted.  And then.....*cue pillar of light*  my self told myself, "So?"  I quit moving.  It was like someone else was talking.  "So what if Kole's going to get up soon.  You can still sleep for a bit.  Just take naps with him tomorrow.  Your back won't hurt as bad then."  And you know what? I smiled.  I don't know where that voice came from but I like her!  And I've listened to her all day today!  She can be a little sassy.  Get a little out of hand.  Get a little TOO relaxed if you know what I mean.  Like today- I had eaten a couple cookies already and she told me it would be fine to eat a few more.  She hasn't lead me wrong yet.
I'm feeling good. 
I've got a great life.  It's not picturesque.  I don't have any cool projects going on right now.  I don't have anything funny to talk about.  I haven't been extremely or even average-ly creative recently.  I weigh 167 pounds.  I eat a ton of food.  I'm tired a lot.  Me and Ken disagree on things.  I don't call my friends when I know I should. Kole wakes up and cries at night and during naps and sometimes just because he hasn't cried yet that day. It's not Pleasantville or Happy Town all day every day.

But...So?

To: Patty From: Patty

It's so much healthier to look ahead at the end of the year...
    ...but I always look back.
There's no such thing as changing the past.  I don't even believe in regrets.  No mistake is that bad.  Nothing I've done is that unforgiving.  Looking back at the past year I can't change anything... but given the opportunity I would give myself some advice or tell myself some things that would have eased..... life.

"Stand up for yourself.  Stand up for yourself again.  Stand up for yourself however many times it takes."
"You should say 'I'm sorry' to him."
"Go slow.  No one is timing you."
"Just let it go."
"Lighten up on that eyeliner, babe."
"You should call yourself "babe" more.  You love that."
"Buy bigger.  Don't cut up your clothes to make them fit."
"It's temporary."
"Just let it go."
"You are that strong."
"Breathe.  Relax.  Cry.  It's okay."
"Do it!"
"You know you're doing the right thing.  Quit looking for validation."
"Just let it go."
"You should tell your doctor where to go.  Or where to stick it.  Or something to get the message through to her."
"Forget all natural.  You will succeed."
"Your son loves you.  Never second guess that."
"Just let it go."
"No one is mad at you.  Or judging you.  Or criticizing you."
"You look perfect.  Baby weight- schmaybe weight.  Ken thinks your spectacular."
"Stand up for him.  Stand up for him again.  Stand up for him however many times it takes."

"You lived a good year in 2010.  You were fair and honest.  And you learned."

I'm so smart.  And I'm kind to myself.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Morn

When we were little girls mom and dad would set a time for us to get up.  It was normally 7:30.  Going to bed was so hard.  We wanted to stay up to hear Santa's reindeer.  Krissy claims she saw Rudolph one year.  The whole room glowed red on Christmas Eve.  That's proof enough for me.  Dad always read the Christmas story.  Mom had this picture that was stained glass of an angel.  I feel like we read the story next to that angel.  When we woke up in the morning, whatever time it was, we would all meet on some one's bed.  I remember it being Vicky's bed a lot.  We'd sit there with the lights off and stare at the clock.  6:30.  6:35.  Every year someone claimed that they heard a puppy during the night.  6:50.  We'd giggle and laugh in red and white striped pajamas.  Nightgowns occasionally. 7:15.  We'd move into the hall and wait outside of mom and dad's door.  Julie would sneak in the bathroom and do her hair.  Andi would follow.  7:30.  It's time!  One of us would go in and get mom and dad up.  I never did.  We'd wait at the top of the steps and dad would go down to make sure Santa came.  He'd light the tree and put on some Christmas music.  Then, stand at the bottom of the stairs and announce, "He came.  Come one down."  The spread of present was always spectacular.  Piled under the tree. One year there was a bike.  One year there was a train set.  One year there was a camera, another year a watch. One year there was a Barbie house taller than we were.  Santa always knew what to get us.  After presents were stockings.  There was always special shampoo and an orange in the toe.  I'd get Pantene and Andi would get No More Tangles.  Mom would make a big breakfast, usually cinnamon rolls.  We'd be allowed to bring one present over to Grandma's house.  I've loved Christmas since I was a little girl.  Still do.
Ken makes them just as magical as when I was little.
It makes me excited for Kole.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Mawwige

There are a lot of things that Ken is good at.
Driving in reverse. Singing like Brad Paisley. Cooking anything I feel like. Hanging Kole upslidedown.  Paying the bills without complaining.  Shoveling snow super fast.  Growing a beard (it takes like... a day.)  Coming up with nicknames.  Giving talks using only an outline.  Mental Math.  Texting.  Summarizing books without giving away the ending, or the suspense.  Mailing things.  Cooking breakfast sausages.  Trimming toenails (our entire family (of 3) has lovely toenails thanks to Ken.)  Teaching without being preachy.  Starting a fire.  Casting a fly rod.  Finding the best song on the radio.  Picking out souvenirs.  Visualizing.  Doing electrical work.  Popping zits.  Memorizing things.  Ordering the best thing on the menu.  Listening without giving advice.  Telling jokes.  Cleaning the kitchen.  Dancing.  Microsoft Excel. Beating me at Phase 10.  Beating me at Sequence.  Beating me at Parcheesi.  Saying "no" without actually using that word.  Changing diapers... he's fast and thorough.  Saving.  Letting me know when I have something in my hair, on my face, or in my teeth.  Writing in cards.  Seeing something through to the end.  Providing for us.  Taking pictures.  Completely relaxing.  Drying off.  Making decisions.  Small talk.
Thinking of me.
Putting me first.
Loving me.

I've got a killer husband. 
I definitely married up.

Monday, December 13, 2010

A Tale of Two Patty's

THINGS I MISS FROM BEFORE MOTHERHOOD:
1.  Parking and going right into the store.
2.  Sleeping.
3.  Staying silent while grocery shopping.
4.  Getting dressed.  Everyday.
5.  Knowing what I am doing.
6.  Ken as my husband and not Kole's Dad.
7.  Not being thirsty 24/7.
8.  Being able to read a whole book in a week.  Maybe 2.
9.  Dry clothes... especially in the chest area.
10.  Talking about things besides the baby.

THINGS I WOULDN'T TRADE FOR ANYTHING
1.  Having Kolester as my sidekick everywhere I go.
2.  Middle of the night snuggle sessions.
3.  Narrating each grocery aisle to Koler being sure to include my favorite and least favorite items.
4.  Switching from pajamas to sweats and counting that as "dressed."
5.  How everyday brings something new I've never tried before.
6.  Seeing Ken bond with Kole, even for just a couple days at a time.
7.  My cool new metal water bottle.  It keeps water SO cold.
8.  Reading to Kole every morning and every night.  And giving him my critique of his books.
9.  Being able to give my baby all the nutrients he needs... straight from my body to his.
10.  Talking exclusively about the baby.

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Retraction by Ken

Ken read my blog for the first time since I started it and did I get an earful about my statements (which were incorrect) regarding the book he read about The Panama Canal.  Which was called A Path Between the Seas not In Between The Seas.
A bit of what he said:
"26 out of every 100 people died in the first 3 years which worked out to about 1200 a month.  Leave the facts to people who read fact books.  Your statistics were erroneous.  26 people dying per month is not a staggering statistic.  It's a paltry sum.  Not even comparable.  AND it cost 324 million dollars, quite a sum.  Just don't toss around facts willy nilly like they don't mean anything.  Thousands of people died to make that canal and you can't even honor them by getting the facts right."

I'm thinking I might have to change my handle.  So he can't find me.

Comfort and Joy, No more

I sent Ken to the market (how green and snooty do I sound saying market) to get some nursing pads.  I was out and leaking ever. ee. where.  I asked for Lansinoh.  I said they were in a purple box and around $5.  This is what he brought home:
Not purple.  Not Lansinoh.  Not $5.  He got the nursing pads thing right.
I am one who sticks with a good thing.  If I like it I'm not changing.  I don't even want to try something else.  (Same policy applies at restaurant...get the Sticky Finger Salad at Winger's, Tampico Chicken at Garcia's, Pad Thai at the Thai House, The Henry's Fork at the SnakeBite, Chalupas at Taco Bell.... do you get the point?  I never waver.)  If it's working why look for something else, eh?  But given the fact that I was marinating my chest I decided to use what was given to me. Big mistake.
  A few things have struck me as odd about this particular product.  Numero Uno:  They are incredibly small.  The circumference might be 4 inches.  To you that might do the trick... but for Tits McGee over here... no way.  It's like trying to substitute something the size of a nickel when you need something the size of a CD.  Or a dinner plate.  I don't feel safe and protected wearing them.  I feel like I am about to spring a leak big enough to put out a burning building and all that stands between me and such a heroic feat is some itchy gauze.  I feel overly cautious... like a can't bend certain ways.  Perhaps this is because they have stickies that don't work.  The adhesive is smaller than one half of a postage stamp.  Numero Tres:  They have, what I call, nipple enhancers.  The inner layer of the pad has a little dent in it.  Perhaps a hint that this is where you should be centered.  But the outside (THE OUTSIDE) has a round nub that protrudes from the pad!  A nipple.  Just in case your lousy nursing bra does have some kind of extra coverage- this will take care of it and make sure you are always beaming.  I'm not kidding.  Or in case you don't have any nipples this will make it look like you do.  But nursing should would be tough if you're in that boat.
I only have 52 left.  That's about 7 weeks.  Maybe 8.  I guess I should be grateful.  Ken did save me a trip to the store after all.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Leaving the Nest

Koleson Poulsen has decided to spread his chubby wings.  The child has started his own blog.  Inspired by his cousin Greta, he's out publishing posts on a pretty regular basis.  I'm so proud.  *sniff, sniff* Last night I sent him to bed, went about tidying up the house,  and noticed it was unusually quiet in his room.  So I go in and there is Kole blogging in his crib!  Now, I encourage self expression and creativity but lights out is lights out! 
Check out his blog... it would make his day.

Hello My Pretties

Today I got an early Christmas present.  It's from my step-grandma-in-law.  "Sheri's Mom" is so much easier to say.  She has hated her washer and dryer since she bought them... a year ago.  Oer the weekend she decided to buy some she really wanted.  Which were the old top loader kinds.  She gave me her new/old ones. 

They are spectacular!  They are front loaders and she had this cool pedestal built so you don't have to bend over.  They are ultra quiet.  And the buttons (!!) So fun.  It tells you how long each cycle takes and let me tell you... none of them take very long.  I am washing all of Kole's clothes (another post) and one load on cold, slow spin, delicates takes 29 minutes!!  That's it!  Watch out Kelly Ripa, you've got competition.  My old washer which was Bob and Sheri's old washer before it was my old washer took about an hour and a half to wash any load.  It was thorough.... but slow. 
AND  extra bonus... I had the old washer and dryer taken to Northgate Appliance and...even though they had no use for the washer (they guessed it was about 18 years old) but gave me $60 for my dryer!  I'm rich!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Houdini

I was in Salt Lake this weekend with me inlaws, me hubby, and me baby.  We were in Dick's and I had to pee so bad.  It's all this water I drink to prevent me from being dehydrated and to improve my fair, fair complexion.  Kenner took the Koler and I bolted to the bathroom.  I was impressed by the size and cleanliness of the bathroom.  I went into a stall, locked the door, and released.  Ahhhhhh.  There was a little girl in the next stall.  She left.  I finished and got ready to leave.  I go to unlock the stall and um... it doesn't unlock.  The thing turns but the bar stays locked.  I click it back and forth.  Nothing.  I feel panic set it.  What should I do?  I decided to start with "Help?"  No one answers.  Surprise. 
No one is in the bathroom.  I think maybe I'll climb over the top.  I'm tall.  But what if I am halfway over and someone comes in? They won't be able to use the bathroom because I'll be perched up there.  I know I'll chicken out once I get up there.  They'll have to call a store manager and what... bring in a ladder?  Climbing over is out of the question.  I try the lock again.  Nothing.  I only have one choice.  Wiggle under.  The bathroom did seem clean.  I slid my purse under.  Got down on my knees... then my belly... and escaped.  It was.  Worth sharing.
And I felt really adventurous after.  Like I could escape from the jaws of Death.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Make the Caroling Cut

My Christmas will be all the more merry if I don't hear:

Grown-up Christmas List
Do You Hear What I Hear?
Christmas Shoes
Jingle Bells (the one that's just dogs... barking)
Mary Did You Know?
or
Anything sung by Josh Groban

Ever. Never.  Ever never again.

But...please load up on The Grinch Song, Bells Will Be Ringing, Santa Baby (the non-Madonna one), and any song off of Neil Diamond or Barry Manilow's Christmas albums.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Breaking the Sabbath

The Kenster, the Kolester, and I like to take Sunday drives.  More so before the Big Chill and more MORE so before the snow.  I'd say it was 3 weeks back and the boys and I decided to take one of our drives.  Kolester dozed off as usual leaving a vacancy in his part of the conversation.  When the drive was drawing to an end Ken said, "You know what I could go for?"  "What?"  "A glazed donut."  Mmmkay.  Ken looked at me all sly and smiley as if to ask.... 'Can I have one even though it's Sunday?'  I reminded Ken that it 'twas the Sabbath.  His argument was that it was past sunset (okay Tevye) and he had cash.  Cash is untraceable after all. There would be no proof of the act. 
We stop at a truck stop and Ken hands me 5 one dollar bills.  My instructions were to get a box of Hostess Old Fashioned Glazed Donuts.  Why I had to go in and get them?  Eh?  Don't know.  I go in and find them.  There is an orange sticker on the box advertising 2/$5.  Good deal.  They only had one box left and I only had five dollars. No change for tax.  I figure If it's two for five... one should be $2.50.  Maybe $3.50 since the sticker signifies... a "special."  Four bucks should be enough for the donuts.  I'll get a lottery ticket too. 
I go to the check-out and am greeted by a woman who has been smoking for way too much of her life.
"Is this it, honey?"
Can I say that I hate when people call me honey.  Especially at retail places.  They say it like I am too young to be shopping.  Like I am going to take a bunch of crumpled up dollars out of my pocket and drop some change trying to put it all on the counter.  I was so offended by her calling my "honey"  I just nodded.
"Oookay... that's $6.84," the teller told me.
WHAT?! SIX-EIGHTY-FOUR
I looked down at my five dollars.  Tried to do the math in my head.  A box of donuts and a lotto ticket can't be $6.84.
"Are you sure that's right?  Did you ring something up twice?"
"I didn't ring anything up wrong."
"Ok. I have to go get some more money."  I explain as I back away from the counter... sheepishly.
I was called honey for a good reason I guess. 
I head back to the car and ask Ken for more dollars.  He had the same question I had Why is it so much money? 
I got a couple more dollars and went back in to confront the teller.  Have a mentioned my outfit?  Furry blue socks, Crocs, Ken's gray sweatpants, a Utah Jazz t-shirt, and I was sans bra.
"Hi.  I have more money.  I just don't understand though.  The donuts were two for five.  So one at the most is probably what... $3.50?  And the lotto tickets is a dollar with no tax.  At the most I see this purchase being $4.50.  How did you get $6.84?"
"I rang it up and the machine said $6.84."
"May I please see the screen?"
"No."
"I just don't see how this all adds up."
"If you have the money to pay for it, why does it matter?"
"Because I don't want to give you money for nothing."
"Rest assured honey I don't get any of this money."
I sighed and handed over the $7 only because I knew that was the only way to see my receipt and prove to this woman that I was getting ripped off.
She gave me my change and told me to have a nice day.  No receipt.
"Can I have my receipt please?"
"The machine's out of paper honey."
One more honey to rub it in.  Ugeeh.     
I still can't believe it I paid six dollars and eighty-four cents for a box of glazed donuts and a lottery ticket.  My math says that I paid five eighty-four for a box of donuts.  Which is more than it would have been for 2 box of donuts!  I was totally ripped off.  Totally!

I guess that's what you get for breaking the Sabbath.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Contract

Our contract is up on Saturday.  So this realtor, excuse me Realtor, who promised to sell my house- who claimed to be just the best in the biz and had references to prove it has failed me.  Has broken her promise.  I just want her to come get her stupid sign out of my yard so I won't feel like such a loser.  It's like being one of the last 2 kids left in gym and the teacher just splits you up so no one is actually picked last.  Nice try Mr. Yogan,  but I already know it would have been me.  I just can't kick the ball hard.  If I make it to first I stay there the whole time.
 My house.  My loved beautiful house.  Nobody wants it.  sigh  I know the housing market is slow.  I know the market is flooded with real estate.  Pishaw.  Yadda yadda.  I get a newsletter every month from Ms. Shoulderpads that tells me how many houses she has sold.  In that month.  And it's always 6 or more.  Our house has never made the list.  Must have a homemade gym uniform.  I don't think she should send that letter.  I know that letter is supposed to instill hope into the eyes of home-sellers... but as for me... and my occasionally cynical attitude- I just think "So THIS is what you've been doing all month instead of selling my house!" 
Plus there's all this hype with saying "I'm moving."  You tell your family.  And then your friends.  And then your neighbors.  And then your friends' family.  And then strangers at the deli counter.  And everyone is so sad and wishes you weren't leaving.  But, here I am four months later... still here... and everyone is acting like I've already moved.  No one wants to continue flourishing our relationship because to them I am gone already.  Or ought to be gone already.  And they've basically already said their goodbyes.  In their hearts.

 I'm the girl who cried moving.  And cries because she isn't moving.

Board Meeting

I've decided to turn my blog completely over to myself.  I've included Ken in it for the last 2 or 3 years and I've never gotten an ounce of gratitude out of that man.  He's never made a guest post.  I don't think he's ever read it.  He certainly doesn't know my handle.  It's a facade for me to pretend he is interested.  So although I am profoundly into Ken- this just isn't the place.

So, I bring it to my board.  Which only consists of moi.

Minutes of Special Board Meeting
kenandpatty.blogspot.com
Date:  11/23/2010
Location: Kitchen
In Attendance:  All (being one... being me)

I, Patricia L. Poulsen, hereby make a motion to remove Kenneth R. Poulsen from the blog http://www.kenandpatty.blogspot.com/

Motion was seconded by Patricia L. Poulsen (ruthless)
All in favor show by the appropriate sign.
Any opposed?

Voting was unanimous to remove Ken.

Thank you.

You're still loved hot cheeks.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Sickling

...uh.... that's me.

I don't have the seasonal flu, or some bug zapping around.  I've been seriously out of it.  And by out of it I mean blacking out of it.  It started two weekends ago.  Ken came home but I just couldn't get the ball rolling.  I was really dizzy.  I tried taking a couple naps.  Ken figured I was suffering from "severe fatigue."  As if regular fatigue wasn't severe enough.  During the week with him being gone... I ebbed and flowed.  By Thursday I was not doing well and on Friday I could hardly pick up the babe.  Ken came home and I told him i was dizzy still.  He said I must be tired.  I don't understand his logic.  I've been tired before and have never experienced dizziness with it.  I was considering checking into Dr. Plumb's facility with Lucille 2.  This vertigo.  I made it until Sunday night when I decided to break down and go seek professional help.  I gave the doctor my list of ailments:

I'm dizzy.
I keep blacking out.
I feel like I have to throw up all the time.
I am very weak.
My back hurts.
My stomach hurts.
I can't eat anything.
I'm taking a lot of Immodium (hint, hint)
I feel like I am having contractions.

"Do I have stomach cancer?"  I was so sure of it.  I was sure I had like diabetes or stomach cancer or an ulcer or hypoglycemia.  I had never felt this sick before. 

"It sounds like you're dehydrated."

"No.  I drink lots of water since I am am nursing."

"How much is lots?"

"8 glasses a day."

"You're dehydrated.  I'm going to hook you up to an IV."

I was so embarrassed.  I got a bunch of sugar water pumped into me and felt worlds better.  I went home and Ken was all hoity toity and 'I told you so.'  I guess I married a doctor.  The doctor did tell me to drink at least twice as much water as before and he wrote me a prescription to relax.  On doctor's orders.  So, last night I took a long shower (drank some water) while ken get Kole into bed.  We watched Christmas Vacation (drank some water) and went to bed early (drank some water.)  Today Koley and I slept in until 9.  We read two Dr. Seuss books, drank some water,  looked through a Land's End catalog, drank some water, played peek a boo, drank some water, made funny faces in the mirror, and drank some water.  It's now 11 and I am still in my snow leopard pajamas (drinking water).  No bra (drinking water).  Eating CocoWheats (drinking water).  Listening to Christmas songs (drinking water).  I'm considering doing some online Christmas shopping... but I don't want to over do it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Rusty McGrew Poulsen

Rusty loved walks
He loved Ken laying on the floor
He loved stalking squirrels
He loved eating the ends of our bread
He did not love the mailman

Rusty loved walks
He loved getting to lay on the couch
He loved eating dryer sheets
He loved long weekends
He did not love getting brushed

Rusty loved walks
He loved eating ice cubes
He loved playing ball
He loved not wearing his collar
He did not love Henry the cat

Rusty loved walks
He loved paper towel rolls
He loved taking naps on the bed
He loved yard days
He did not love the squirt bottle

Rusty loved walks
He loved to run
He loved his green Nyla Bone
He loved riding in the car
He did not love being by himself

Rusty loved walks
Rusty loved being a Grand-dog
Rusty loved having guests over
Rusty loved Ken

Rusty loved me.


December 19, 2006-November 17, 2010

Monday, November 15, 2010

A Letter

Hey Rusty,
You were my Christmas present back in 2006.  Do you remember that?  That was the year me and Ken went on our cruise and moved into this house.  Ken snuck out a few days before Christmas and brought you home on December 19th.  Through all my happy sobbing I said, "Is he for us?"  The answer was yes.  Oh how I loved you.  I would get up early and take you in the back yard in all that snow just to play with you..  And be with you.  You'd sit on my lap in the easy chair covered in blankets while I read Harry Potter. You liked being under the blankets just like me.
You got really sick about a week after you came home.  Remember?  I took you to the vet and he said you wouldn't make it to the new year.   I told him to try anything to get you better.  It took about 24 hours for you to be back to your good old self.  You were a Christmas miracle.  You had a second loan out on life and we were going to live it up.  We took walks every day.  Remember the first time you saw another dog?  He was so much bigger than you!  You were just a pup and when he barked... you peed your pants.  I laughed about that for a long time.
Remember going to obedience school?  You were the class clown.  They asked us to leave early every single week.  Most people would be deterred by that.  Not us.  We were hungry for knowledge.  You didn't make any good friends there.  But we bonded.  I stood up for you week after week.  We made it through.  And you can sit, stay, down, and eat treats like nobodies business.
You really like going to AmeriPet.  The first time I took you there I cried when we dropped you off.  I was so worried.  Would you make friends?  Would you behave yourself?  Would they feed you the right amounts at the right times?  Would you remember me when I came to get you? I was so excited to pick you up. You were Mr. Popularity.  King of The Wild Bunch.  A real ring leader.  But best of all, you were really happy to see me.  You pulled on the leash the kid was carrying so hard he had to run to keep up with you.  You jumped right into my arms and smiled.  You wagged your tail the whole way home and then you slept.  For a full 24 hours.  Remember that?
Remember the first night you didn't sleep in your kennel?  I brought you down there like always and you just whined and whined and whined.  I told Ken something was up.  I went down and let you out.  You came upstairs and laid right at the top of the steps.  You decided you were a grown up who didn't need to sleep in a kennel.  I decided to let you try it for a night. "One night." I said. You did great.  I woke up and you were sleeping right outside my door.  All sleepy but happy to see me.  No kennel since then, huh? One night turned into four years.  You are there every morning waiting for me to wake up.
When we found out I had a brain tumor you knew somehow.  You were mellow that weekend.  Calm.  You would lay your head on my lap and listen to me cry.  You didn't mind that we didn't go for any walks for a few days.
I have loved you and cared for you and stood up for you for four years.  You have been my tender companion.  You are a great dog.  But, Russ, I have a new pup now.  His name is Kole.  And for some reason you don't really like him.  I wish I knew why.  I'm going to try to find a new home for you.  Is that okay?  Maybe then you can start going on walks again everyday.  And maybe someone there will be able to snuggle up with you and read her books.  I hope you always remember me.  You are my first dog.  I love you.

Always,
Mom

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Kole Robert Poulsen

As top notch, super creative, loving and silly parents we like giving Kole nicknames.  We rarely call him "Kole."

Kolester
Holy-Moley-Koley
Kolar Bear
The Unit (from grandpa B)
Pudgies
Kole Robby
Kohlrabi
Koley Canoli
Rolly-Polly- Koley
Koletrain
Bubbas, Bebes, Boobus (when talking about Auntie Andi)
Butter Britches
Popeye
Kole Mahokey
Honeychild
Machine Gun Tooter
Kolar Powered
Sumo
Kolesen Poulsen
Koley-san



Aye, we love him.

The Art of Reading

Ken and I are both avid readers.  Ken claims to be more avid than me because he reads what I refer to as "learning books."  Which are just non-fiction.  Like reading non-fiction gets you more points or something.  I don't like non-fiction.  We discussed our reading styles during his weekend visit home.  (For you new followers... my husband is in...a minimal security prison.) 
I am currently reading a book by one of my favorite authors, David Sedaris.  It's called When You Are Engulfed In Flames.  And it's terribly funny.  I'm 85% done with it and am dreading finishing it.  For then I will have to find a new book.  This is my trouble area.  Ken says I struggle so much with it because I have never taken the time to figure out what kind of books I really like.  I always just read what people recommend.  Sometimes those recommendations are fabulous.  Excellent book recommendations that comes to mind are The Time Traveler's Wife, Life of Pi, and A Thousand Splendid Suns.  Sometimes recommendations are garbage.  What comes to mind are Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel and A Severe Mercy and Twilight, New Moon, and Eclipse.  I didn't waste my time with Breaking Dawn.  It took three books but I finally realized Stephanie Myers can't write worth a wooden nickel and my heart will  always belong to Ron Weasley. I admit I do read or at least start reading whatever books are thrown my way.  Nasty habit.  But I disagree with Ken's accusation that I don't know what kind of books I really like.  I read to be thoroughly entertained.  I occasionally need to take a break from darning socks and wash-boarding our laundry in the creek to relax.  The book doesn't have to be funny.  But it must entertain me.  I don't want to learn anything.  I just want to escape.  Be completely enveloped in a new story with deep characters.  Or laugh hysterically at short essays with shallow characters.
Ken thinks it's a shame that I don't like reading to learn.  But, uh, what was college for?  Plus, I don't want to be quizzed by people on what I am reading.  Take Ken. Ken is reading a book on the building of the Panama Canal.  It's called Between the Seas.  He's loving it.  When he tells people what he is reading there are always follow up questions.  And follow up questions are stressful for me.  You can't really have your own opinion on the Panama Canal, right?  It's just facts-so you either have to memorize a bunch of what you read or sound like someone who is trying to sound smart by reading learning books.  It's like when I tell someone I am from Pittsburgh.  And they ask if I like the Steelers.  And I say yes.  And they ask what I thought of that game.  And I didn't watch any game.  And I look like an idiot.
Summary:  I don't read learning books.  You can ask any Tom Sawyer, Emily Dickinson, or Harry Potter- I'll take a recommendation from anyone just so I don't hurt the recommender's feelings.  And, finally, Ken says if he does a guest-post on this blog it would be a book report of Between the Seas.  I'll try to keep him away.


But, cool fact about the Panama Canal it took 44 years to build and on average 27 workers died a month working on it.

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Bagel Altercation

Hello Denmark viewers! This post is for you.


I was at Winco getting the most fantastic bagels made by man. They make them fresh every single day. They are stinking huge and the variety is incredible. I bet there are at least 15 different types. Jalapeno Cheddar, Megaberry, Cinnamon Raisin, Onion, Herb and Cheese, Asiago. I could go on. I will. Blueberry, Chocolate Chip, Around the World, Veggie Delight. I've tried them all and they are all fabulous. And have I mentioned they are incredibly inexpensive. You can get a dozen bagels for $3.15. So,being a bagel lover I stock up one a week. Twice a week if I am feeling extra carby.

I was there on Friday getting my fix. They are held in fold out bins. All over the bins are labels that say "Please Do Not Use Your Hands." And there is a picture of a hand with the no slash over it. A man in his mid-fifties maybe sixties came up and started cruising the containers. I was already selecting mine and carefully picking them up with the tongs and placing them in my bag. This man opens a container puts his HAND in and starts moving all the bagels around! Not touching one and putting in his bag. Picking it up, examining it, and if it didn't meet his expectations he would put it back! Yes, I was shocked. But I thought Who am I to tell this man what to do? I noticed there weren't any tongs on his side. So when I was done I handed him mine with a smile. A small, innocent gesture. The following ensued:


P: Here you go.

Man: What?

P: Here are some tongs so you can pick your bagels.

M: Why do you think I need those?

P: To pick your bagels out.

M: I'm getting my bagels just fine.

P: Yes, but you are not supposed to use your hands.

M: Are you patrolling this area?

P: No. But there are signs on every container saying not to use your hands and that picture with the hand and the "no-slash" over it.

M: That's a request. It only says please.

P: A request?! No. It's not a request. It's a mandate. You can't use your hands. That's why they provide these tongs. (again presenting man with tongs)

M: Do you think my hands are dirty?

P: No, I don't. But I don't want YOUR hands on MY bagels.

M: As I recall I didn't touch YOUR bagels. I touched MY bagels.

P: Yeah. AND every one that didn't pass your quality control that you put back.

M: Why were you watching me so closely?!

P: I just noticed you! I noticed you were picking the same bagels I like! I noticed you didn't take the time to find a pair of tongs! I noticed you used your hands! And I noticed you put some back AFTER you touched them! Use these!

M: I'm not going to use those tongs!

P: I can't believe you!

M: Well!

P: FINE!!


I slammed the tongs back in their container. And stormed off. I actually couldn't believe myself. Where's my Bagel Police badge? I've obviously earned it. It reminded me of the old Patty. She was fiery. Always picking fights with strangers. A lot like Larry David.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Post Election Day

Today was Election Day. I wore my VOTE necklace. It's so trendy and hip. I got that necklace when I came back from Germany. October 2004. My mom (and sisters I believe) were trying to teach me how to shop. The biggest rule I needed to quit breaking was "Buy essentials." Get a great pair of dark jeans, a go-to pair of khakis, a knock 'em dead pair of boots. A denim fitted jacket and a white and a black sweater turtle neck. Start working from there. They told me to quit buying the latest fashion. Buy something you can wear for more than a couple months. We went to the mall and what do I buy? I necklace that says "Vote." Talk about a temporary accessory. But, I wear it once a year.

That once a year was today. Here's my beef with election day. I went to the school, I waited in line, and I voted. I am a dag gum American after all. I guess it's not the actual day of November 2nd that eats me it's all the before and all the after. For weeks, nay months (!), before signs are posted all over the community. People host parties where candidates comes and tell you how great they are. As the day draws closer there are radio ads with candidates promoting themselves and there are radio ads where they are putting the other guy down. I do my research. I read up on just about every one. There's all this buzzy hub bub.
Election day comes.
You vote.
The winner is announced.
And you never hear from them again.
Unless they cheat on their wife.

I would like to see a bit more follow up. Some continual campaigning. A reminder radio ad here and there letting us know what a great job they are doing. Or heck, even a thank you would be nice. Not all this, "I knew we could do it" bologna. Is that so much to ask? Am I crossing a line here?

Well. That's That.

I find it interesting that the four people who commented on the post about The Bloggies were last year's winners. And most likely the only four people who read my blog.

I really think I'm a good writer. I am entertaining, charming, witty, cynical, and myself. I think I am better than cJane and NieNie and she was on Oprah!

What does it take to get your name out there!

Come one my four readers! Spread the word!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Bloggies

I bet you remember the Blog Awards I gave out last year. Especially if you received one, or were sour for not receiving one. Well, my amigos, that time is nigh at hand to once again recognize some of you. I was prompted by a potential Bloggie winner that you deserve a heads up. Can't argue there. So, the categories this year are (along with their explanations):



Drumroll.

Cymbal crash!!



Most Suspenseful Blog

I like a post that keeps me reading. That doesn't tell the whole story in the first sentence. That has a touch of foreshadowing. I little mystery. You know?



Least Updated Blog

I'll have to go through the blog logs to award this one. This is strictly mathematical. A prize for the slacker I suppose. A bloggie that goes out to someone who most likely would never receive one. Kind of like picking a chubby girl as your base runner just so she feels good about herself.



Most Thought-Out Commenter

It's not too late to get some brown nosing in here, folks.



Best Pictures

A repeat from last year, I know I know. Here's the rocks- stone me.


Impressively Improved

Everyone has to start somewhere. This we know. What is often NOT discussed is every ones also has to end somewhere. This award is for a person who is really going places with their blog. Maybe they started out on the wrong side of the tracks- but they're heading up now.

Alrighty. Awards will be awarded at the awards ceremony at the end of December. Start campaigning!

The Helpless Human


Last night I was getting The Kolester ready for bed. Dad had decided that he was tired and needed some down time before getting up early to go to Salt Lake. Reasonable. So, I feed the bottomless milk tank Kole stores in his abdomen. I get up and pat his back to get a burp out. I'm walking around the living room where Ken is reading and he says, "Will you turn on the big light?" Sure. I hoist my 20 pound three month old onto one arm so I can turn the knob to turn the lamp on. Click. Click. On. Patting the back and out comes some gas. The bath stuff isn't ready so I balance Kole in one arm and gather up the tubby, a towel, the baby body wash, powder, bag balm, a fresh diaper, wipes, wash rags, a onesie, and his zippy jammas. I'm carrying all this PLUS Kole, mind you. I'm walking through the living room into the kitchen and Ken says, "Will you bring me a spoonful of cookie dough?" Sure. I set Kole on the counter... don't call Child Protective Services on me. He can't really move yet. I grab the container of cookie dough and a spoon and bring it in to Ken. "Oh, I just wanted one spoonful." My nerves are getting just slightly rattled as I reply, "Well when you're done you can just set it down. Eat what you want." I'm walking back to the kitchen when the voice of my darling husband stops me. "You know what would make this snack perfect? Milk!" Being the intellectually gifted individual I am- I sense this is a hint to bring him milk. Which I do. Begrudgingly. Then I get the bath running. I get Kole undressed. I get peed on. I get Kole in the water and I start scrubbing the stink off of him. (His major stink areas are under his multiple chins and beneath the rolls that are behind his ears.) I'm about one third of the way through the process when ringing so sweetly in my ears I hear: "Hey hon? Will you bring me some socks? My feet are getting cold. Oh! And some water?"
"Ken, I'm right in the middle of Kole's bath. Can it wait?"
"Well, how long will it take you to finish?"

Not a good question to ask, Ken. Not a good question.

"Well, Ken, the bath will take about 5 more minutes. Then I'm going to read him a story. Then I'll put him down for the night. Soooo... 20 minutes? You might want to get your own socks if you are really cold."

"Ah. nah. I'll wait for you."

Isn't he just the sweetest? I get Kole down. It does take about 20 minutes to get through the whole routine. I go into our bedroom and Ken is in the bathroom now taking out his contacts. I'm changing and he says, "Will you get me that glass of water now?"

The following conversation ensued:

P: (having reached her limit) Can you get it yourself? I spend all day taking care of a helpless human being.
K: But I can help myself.
P: Great! That's what I like to hear! So, go get your own stinking glass of water.
K: I don't think you understand I can help myself.
P: Why do you think I don't understand that?
K: You wouldn't be helping a helpless human being you'd be helping a human who can help himself.
(Both start laughing)
P: Pretty sure I get it. Do you get what you are saying?
K: Yes. And I am presenting you with an opportunity to serve a fellow human being.
P: Oh that's rich.

I don't get his reasoning. Ever.
But I did get him his water.
Because I love him.
It's hard not to.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Anytime we get Kole down to his skeevies, Ken will poke his belly button and say, "What's this? Huh? What's this?" The first time he did it I answered, "That's his belly button." Ken corrected me: "Ahh... that's where the Indians shot you."


I hope you enjoy the above posted picture of Kole in all his chubby dignity. I thought the bigger the photo the easier to observe the bullet wound.

Bubbas



I just watched Juno for like the 58th time. Anytime I see someone have a baby on a movie or TV or anything. I cry. Even when I know they did a crappy job portraying a birth. I think Juno does a decent job. But, without fail, when that new born comes out and is crying and so fresh. I cry. Every. Time. Any movie. Tears of joy.

I miss Kole being that small. This small.

Roost Reigners


Ken is only home on the weekends. So me and Kole have full reign of the roost. We pretty much do whatever we want. We can sit around all the livelong day and eat Oreos, watch old episodes of Friends, play Sudoku, and never get dressed. And the truth is we do. Sure we slip a walk in here and there. Occasionally we go visiting to some locals. But mostly it’s just me and Kole hanging out.
Our days start with the morning feeding- and a reading out of the book I am reading, A Prayer for Owen Meany. It’s a John Irving. I like it. Don’t worry I skip the bad words. I do talk to him like he’s my age though. Yup. Me and Kole. Just a couple of 26 year olds hanging out. He’s only 3 months old but he’s got an incredible sense of vocabulary. He’s a bit of a Chatty Cathy really. After he’s done eating he cuts my reading off and tells me about his dream. For like 20 minutes. Just on and on. We play on the floor for a bit. Koley Canoli cuts the small talk and tries to roll over. After a half hour he’s pooped and begs to be put down for a nap. He naps, I shower. (Sometimes I nap.) He gets up and we start from the top. Except this time I read one of his books. The Cat in the Hat Comes Back, or The Digging-est Dog, or a segment from O, The Oprah Magazine. Okay, that last one is another one of mine- but my likes are his likes and vice versa. Our days play out on top of each other. We take a walk around 3 or 4. Come in for some hot chocolate. His day winds up at about 8:30. A final feeding, a relaxing lavender bath, full body pjs and the little boy is out for the night by 9. I tend to the house. And then read some more of Owen Meany. Do I feel guilty for reading secretly when Kole doesn’t know? Yeah, a little. I realize he’s not getting the full story- but I do try to fill in the any major plot changes for him the next morning. I don’t want the poor little guy left in the dark just because he can’t stay up as late as me. I hit the sack about 10:30 and we meet in the morning around 8 for another day in Paradise.
Now, when Ken comes home the roost is… up-roosted. Pretty much the only thing that stays the same is Kole wakes up. Ken does the diaper changing. Nice change for mama. Tough change for Kolester. Literally. Dad is a little rougher than mom. When I finally manage to pry Kole away from Ken and put him down for a nap it lasts like 30 minutes…. maybe 35… and Ken sneaks in there and wakes him up. Right under my nose! I’d be in the shower or reading out back and all the sudden Kole’s up. And Ken is wondering why the little baby is crying. Uh… he’s crying because he’s tired. Because he was asleep and you woke him up. Sort of like when I get woken up. I’m a crank. My baby inherited that. So- back to the day. There are no naps. We still take our walk to try to get the baby to go to sleep. Great idea, Dad. Ken thinks the faster you walk the higher your chances are that the baby will fall asleep. It really just makes me exhausted. Kole gets fussier and fussier and fussier as afternoon turns into evening. He fights hard until 8. At 8 I feed him one more time, give him his bath, and put him to bed. He’s out in under 3 minutes. The house is quiet. Ken and I snuggle on the couch.
After 20 minutes, Ken suggests waking up Kole to play with him.
Oh Dad.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Nursing Bras.

A bra is intended to support a woman's body. To lift and separate. To add cleavage and self-esteem. My mom says that you don't need to diet. You just need to go tanning and get a new bra. That's the power a bra should possess. It should make you feel like more of a woman. It should add pep to your step and your confidence.
For these reasons I don't believe a nursing bra should be classified as a bra. It offers no support. It is basically like wearing a T-shirt that you can unfold. Lame-y. And is it just me or do you need the biggest boost of all after you bear a child? Sure you have a chest unlike any you've ever had but when you finally get the opportunity to dress up and go out- you put on your "bra" and it's Sag City! They hang down to your flabby belly button!
Now, I have given the old nursing bra a try. More than one. But yesterday was the last of it. Ken and I were taking Kole-son on a walk and Ken looks over and says, "You could put on a bra when we leave the house."

Yeah. I was wearing the trusty nursing bra. Apparently you can't tell.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Moving Woes


Ken took his dream job last month. His first day was August 9th. He is now working for Wilson Financial Advisors. His dream job is in Salt Lake. Maybe that makes it all the more dreamy. Ken leaves Monday mornings around 5 and comes home Friday nights around 8. Kole and I run amok all week and then hurry and put the house back together Friday right before Ken gets home. No, that’s not true. That would be true under normal circumstances. But our circumstances are abnormal. We’ve got the house up for sale. Because one of these days we’re going to move to Salt Lake and quit all this silly commuting. Since the house is for sale it has to be ready for “showing” at the drop of a hat. Talk about pressure. I’m not a slob. I like a neat house. But I’m not a freak about it. If I miss loading the dishwasher one night- big whoop. If I leave my clothes on the floor- I won’t scold myself. Never have. But now- I can’t. When someone calls to see the house I normally have about an hour to get it ready and to leave. Ready. Ready as in sparkling. Ready as in I can see myself in the stovetop. Ready as in it smells like a summer meadow in here and not stinky diapers. If it was just me that’d be a piece of cake. A piece of crumb cake. But it’s not me. It’s me and Kole and Rusty. So it normally goes something like this.

I just get Kole down for a nap- after caving- and cuddling him to sleep. I scan the premises. Dirty dishes, dirty clothes, dirty diapers. Everywhere. I shrug. Nap time for everyone! Hip Hip Hooray!! Phone rings. It’s Ken. “Someone’s going to come look at the house at 4. You need to be out by 3:45.” I look at the clock. 3:00. I cry. I hang up with Ken and start cleaning up. Fast! Dishwasher done in record time. Grab the vacuum and do the couches and the carpets. Kole still sleeping. Windex the mirrors and coffee table. Brillo the stove. Done. Swiffer. Done. Sweep the steps. Did I roll up the hose after watering the grass? No. Roll up the hose. I grab a Hefty bag and grab all the garbages in the house. In my haste I forget about Kole’s sensitivity to cupboards slamming. I cringe. Kole cries. Maybe he’ll stop. Look at the clock. 3:35. 10 minutes. I better check downstairs. Ken’s bathroom is horrible! Run back upstairs. Grab the caddy, run downstairs, hold my breath, and scrub. 3:45. Kole is still crying and Rusty is barking. I imagine he is telling me the baby is crying. I get Rusty and load him in the back of the car. Yeah, I have to take him too. I go in to get Kole and lock him into his seat. Rusty is bouncing and barking as loud as he can. He thinks he is going somewhere fun. I’ll take you somewhere fun. It’s called the pound! We pull out at 3:52. Not bad.

One time I took the gang over to Tautphaus Park. Kole was sleeping. I was throwing the ball for Rusty-muggins. Kole woke up and started crying. It was time for him to eat. We couldn’t go back to the house yet. I couldn’t nurse him in the car… not with Rusty. I looked around and saw my salvation. A dugout. I guess that’s enough privacy. I tied Rusty up and grabbed a blanket to cover myself. A new low. I was nursing my baby in a dirty dugout. With my crazy dog trying to gnaw through his leash. I felt… homeless. With a stroller instead of a shopping cart.

Man, I need this house to sell.

Talkers Block

It’s strange and slightly unnerving that after you have a baby that’s all you can talk about. I remember getting Rusty 4 years ago. Oh how we fawned over him. One morning me, Ken, and Rusty were all in the bathroom getting ready. (I wonder what Rusty was getting ready for?) Ken and I were swapping silly stories about Rusty. Gushing over how much we loved him. I stopped and asked what we talked about before Rusty came along. We couldn’t remember. That pup monopolized every conversation.
And now, it’s the same with Kole. All we ever say is how cute we think he is. How big of a poop he took and how buttery it smelled. We talk about how he slept and for how long. What he is wearing and what he’ll wear next. Blah blah blah blah blah.
I look at this picture and see him saying: "Can't you losers talk about anything else?"

What did we talk about before Kole?
Rusty?
And before Rusty??
The weather?







Kole doesn’t look like either of us. My mom thinks he looks like this guy:




Joseph B. Wirthlin

I can kinda see it.

I think he looks like this guy:


Yoshi
Are you seeing it? Are you seeing it?

Even though he has yet to take on the physical traits of either Ken or me- he most definitely has inherited our family's personality traits.

For instance:

Kole has a very discerning scowl. He gets that from the Poulsen side. From his Grandpa on the Poulsen side. Bob wears a scowl to think, read, eat, basically live. It’s not mean. It’s just a concerned look. It’s been passed down from generation to generation.

Kole also has a keen sense of being mocked. He gets that from the Bradley side. From his Grandpa on the Bradley side. George will not be mocked. Kole will not be mocked. If you make fun of Kole for crying or fussing or use too much baby talk- he gets quite upset.

Kole can fall asleep anywhere. He gets that from the Bradley side. From his Aunt Jules. I remember Julie being little (and a big girl) and falling asleep all the time. In the car, on the couch, on anyone’s bed. I don’t think she’s ever seen the end to any movie. She always falls asleep. Kole is the same way. If he is comfortable, he’ll close his eyes and sleep. If he is in his stroller, on the couch, on his Boppy, outside, wherever. He can zonk out.


Kole is a snuggler. That he gets from me and Ken. Proudly. He loves to nuzzle in. If that's all he gets from my own genes... That's fine by me.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Men and Women and Babies


Babies cry, right? We all know this. We all agree with this.
If you are a woman you know that a baby will cry for a multitude of reasons. The baby can be hungry. Or sleepy. The baby can need burped, can have a stomach ache, maybe the baby is bored and wants bounced. The baby can need a diaper change. The baby can need to sit up or lie down. The baby crying is step one in communicating with the baby.

If you are a man and you hear a baby cry.... The baby is hungry.

I can't count the number of times I've been taking a shower or watering my flowers or doing my hair and Ken will come in with a screaming Kole- "He's hungry." I inform Ken that I just fed him 20 minutes ago. "Well he's been crying so I think he is hungry."

To men....
Crying=Hungry.

To women
Crying= Break is over.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Hotels

Our hotel room has a balcony. That makes me feel so ritzy. The balcony fits one person comfortably. Which is fine- Ken has an innate fear of heights. We are on the top floor. Which makes this stay all the more exciting. I was always under the impression that the biggest, fanciest rooms in a hotel were on the top floor. This week I learned they have regular rooms on the top floor too. But I still get a zing asking someone to push "9" when I get into the elevator. They look at me and I smile and nod. That's right. Number 9. Top floor for me, toots! I apparently am not the only one with top-floor-hotel-illusions-of-grandeur.
Our room overlooks the pool. Yesterday a woman brought a newspaper out to poolside, laid down, and fell asleep within 5 minutes. Most likely because she chose to read the newspaper instead of some entertaining smutty magazine. I don't think she intended to fall asleep. When she woke up scorched three hours later she seemed pretty ruffled. And red. She was the pool's only visitor.
Until me and my sister and our babies suited up. Greta jumped right in-started splashing and kicking and laughing. Her mom had to keep a pretty tight grip on her. Kole wannied out and wanted to sleep instead. I had him in his stroller and we must have wheeled 20 laps around that pool. Still wide awake. I caved and nursed him to sleep. Poolside. Right where everyone else in their rooms watching people at the pool could see me. Yes, I'm that mom. It worked. I parked him and his stroller in the shade and had a lil' me time. With Jules. It felt fresh.

I could live here. Literally, here. At the hotel.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Change.

"The only thing constant is change."
That saying has always bothered me. I feel like you should be able to stabilize your life.

A baby changes everything.
It'll be a nice change.
The seasons are changing.
Time for a diaper change.
I change my mind.
I need change for a ten.
I'll change into jeans.
Your voice changed.

I was getting a second MRI at this time last year. They told me I couldn't have kids. Boy did THEY have another thing coming! Over the last year I produced life. There is a human here- that wasn't here before. I can't believe what the female body is capable of. The cycle it goes through. The love. The growth. The pain. The love.

And the pain again...

Sometimes I don't feel like Kole is mine. He is someone else's baby and I am simply tending to him. I would like that feeling to change.

Sometimes I get so nervous about leaving the house with Kole I get physically sick. I would like that feeling to change.

Sometimes I feel like Kole will look directly at each person in the room and smile. but we won't look at me. I would like that feeling to change.

On the other hand.

Whether I feel it now or not he is mine.
He is developing and growing into his own unique self.
He loves me.
He needs me.

And I wouldn't change that for anything.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Hats

My mom bought Kole hats. She was/is on a constant search for them. She thinks baby hats are the cutest thing. I agree- but Kole has a huge head for a baby his age. Not all hats fit his noggin.

Sticking It To the Man


I posted this picture of Kole. Anyone notice anything... odd about it?
This was the day he was circumcised. Maybe that explains his attitude.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Wise Old Owl

Karlenn is my wise old owl. When Kole was first born she gave me a book called BabyWise and a handwritten schedule for helping me and Kole co-exist. I was a stinking wreck and not ready for a schedule. Well. 5 weeks later I still felt like I was swimming. Swimming in quicksand.
Yesterday I read the whole book. Cover to cover. Even the reviews. It's a simple routine. Eat, Play, Sleep. I thought- we can handle that.
EAT: Kole loves to eat. He is a bit of a glutton. Eats as much as he can as fast as he can. So eating for half an hour would be a change for my little dragon. But I thought- I can at least keep him there for a half an hour. I did- and sure enough he slowed down. And spreads it out. He eats for 25 minutes. Hey, no one's perfect right?
PLAY: After the Kolester eats he gets to play for half an hour. I tried taking him to the playground- but he didn't grasp the idea of the see saw or the swings OR the slides! So we pretty much just lay on the ground and stare at the lights. Sometimes we lay on our bellies and stare at the carpet. I know, fun, right?
SLEEP: I then put Koley Oley down for a nap. For at least an hour and a half. When I read the book I was really doubtful- "Yeah right. There is no way that he'll play for half hour and then go to sleep. No stinking way." Boy was I wrong. I put him in his crib ready to deal with hoots and hollers and shrieks. I was only met with a smile, a sigh, and closed eyes. He was totally exhausted! I couldn't believe it!

Lather, rinse, repeat.
It's that easy.

And my head has finally stopped spinning. He hasn't cried at all during the day. A little at night. Everyone needs extra snuggling at night. Kole comes from very snuggly parents.

Is this what it feels like to be a mom? One in control?
I'm loving it.









Wednesday, August 18, 2010

BIRTH PART II (aka The C-Section)




The c-section wasn’t what I thought it would be. Where does that come from anyway? It was really trippy. I remember a vertical blue wall that made me seriously carsick. I remember Ken in scrubs (hat included) looking like a total stud. I remember screaming for them not to start because I could still feel it. The numbing doctor kept saying, “No you can’t babe. They already started.” He kept calling me “babe.” I liked it! It felt like I was getting punched in the stomach over and over. By like 5 people. I thought I would just lay there and then in a few minutes the baby would be there in my arms. Uh.. No. It took probably a half and hour. A half hour of being punched in the stomach after 18 hours of labor. Ouch. Ken didn’t want to watch. I know I talked a lot but I’m not sure what I said. Dr. Huggins said, “Okay he’s almost here....” and then there was a huge gasp through the whole room. A huge gasp and the happiest cry I ever heard. “That’s the biggest baby I’ve ever seen!” The doctors seemed to say in unison. He was crying really happy. Not a sad cry- a cry of relief. I was crying. I looked at Ken... he was a little teary... and just nodded. There was a lot of noise. I was really surprised there was so much racket going on. I heard “11 pounds!” somewhere in the background. I looked back at Ken. “Good job, hun.” Then it was over. Well... the baby was gone. Ken was gone. And I stayed strapped to the table. The doctor who kept calling me babe told me to close my eyes and relax.
“I’m going to die if I close my eyes.”
“You won’t die. We won’t let you die.”
“I’ll die anyway.”

I closed my eyes.... on accident. But lived.

BIRTH PART II (aka Push It!)

You know that Salt n Peppa song right? I wish I had thought of that while I was pushing. That would have been hilarious. I started pushing at quarter to 7. I was so excited that it was finally time to push. All my friends had told me they had to push for “maybe 15 minutes.” A couple of them pushed up to 45 minutes. So at 6:45 I was under the firm impression that by 7:30 (7:45 at the latest) I would be holding a glowing baby in a softly lit hospital room. Ken would be there, family would be gathered around, and there would be music (preferably with violins) playing somewhere softly. I’d be in a pink silk nightgown, my hair swept out of my face in a flawless up-do.
I started pushing in 10 second intervals. I was feeling really good about it. It was work- but it’s nothing I couldn’t do for 45 minutes. My nurse was fantastic. Smiley and encouraging. “Let’s do another 10. And go.” Pushpushpushpushpushpushpushpush. After half hour my nurse started to change. She didn’t seem as excited. She’d say things like, “He’s really cozy in there.” and “Keep your bottom on the table.” I didn’t know my bottom was off the table. When we reached the hour mark I was a little discouraged. I was told to take a break. I was told nicely and all but I really got the impression that she didn’t think I was pushing with all my might. She left to get a second opinion and I told Ken that when she came back I was going to push like hell and that little baby would shoot out of me like a football. I pushed like hell. But nothing happened. Around 9 I thought I was going to die. We were trying all kinds of things. Tug of war. Side pushing. Squatting. One leg up and one down. Extra high stirrups. Extra low stirrups. At this point I became delusional. I really don’t remember a lot of what went on and what I said. I remember someone threatened to turn my epidural down so I could feel enough to push. Didn’t happen. I also remember telling Ken that I could say whatever I wanted and that if anyone needed to calm down it was him. He later told me that when I had to push I would be really really mean and start yelling at everyone to smile and be encouraging and don’t they know I AM pushing. And then on the breaks I would be their #1 cheerleader. Telling the nurses what a great job they did on that push. I had about 7 nurses by this time. They just kept coming in and checking me. Giving their advice. At 9:30 I was screaming for Dr. Huggins. One of the nurses said she would call her. I swear 5 seconds later she was right in front of me. I cried with relief. Ken said I called her my fairy godmother and told her she was the most beautiful woman alive. Oh boy. What a whack I was.
I pushed a few more times. Dr. Huggins asked if I wanted to use the vacuum. I just wanted him out. We tried the vacuum twice to no avail. She couldn’t get it to stick to his head. She asked if I would be okay with a c-section.

“Just get him out.”
Sob. Sob. Sob.

BIRTH PART I (aka This is SO fun!)

I realize that for the rest of my life time will be measured by “before the baby” and “after the baby.’ I still call him “the baby.” That’s bound to get awkward at some point.

It was 4 in the morning and I was up walking around the room trying not to think about my stomach being ripped apart by contractions. Ken woke up and turned the light on. “The baby is coming today,” he said while putting on his glasses.
“I doubt it. This happens every night.”
2 hours later we were walking around the basement fighting contractions (by playing the alphabet game) that were coming every 6 minutes. I love that Ken thought to play a game. What a fun train of thought. You see, during my pregnancy I was thinking I was really brave and incredibly strong. I wanted to go “all natural.” I wanted to do most of the laboring at home and then go to the hospital to push the baby out. I thought that would be “fun.” I lasted until about 10:15 in the morning. At that point, after 6 hours and 15 minutes of contractions, I realized that Yeah. Ken is right. The baby is coming today. Contractions were 4 or 5 minutes a part lasting at least a minute and making impossible to think logically, stand up straight, and not throw up. When I started shaking uncontrollably and puking Ken said it was time to go to the hospital. I agreed. I kept saying to Ken, “Don’t speed. Don’t speed. I don’t want to get pulled over. Don’t speed.” In my head I was thinking, “Remember everything. This is your birth story. How cool is this?!” Ken apparently didn’t pay attention on our tour and I was too distracted by contractions to read any signs so- it took us a while to find labor and delivery. We got there and my sweet sweet nurse whom I will always love- and whose name I will never remember- asked me if I wanted any pain medications. I looked at Ken he was calling my mom and dad and his mom and dad to tell them we were at the hospital. “I don’t think so. We’re going to try this naturally.” She thought that was “nice.” She checked me and I was at a 7. 10 minutes later I got an epidural. She knew. Now, I know. Get the stinking epidural. Don’t be brave. I was brave for 7 hours. It’s overrated. Once the epidural sunk in and I was loving life I told Ken, “This is kind of fun!” A nurse came in and broke my water. She wheeled in a table with all the delivery tools on it and assured me the baby was on his way. Uh, duh. That’s why we are here. Ken and I were so excited. We figured- baby by 1 at the latest- all our family would come that afternoon- what a great and fun day.
1 o’clock came and went.
2 o’clock came and went.
3,4,5, and 6 o’clock came and went.
I was hurting. Even though I received an epidural there was a spot on the lower left side of my back that didn’t go numb. It was about the size of a ping pong ball. I felt a minute part of every contraction. Plus. Even if you can’t feel it your body is still working.
At 6:15 the nurse asked if I was ready to push. I felt really tired already. But, being asked that question brought a new energy.
Absolutely!

Bathing the Boy


Baby gets a bath every night before bed. They say having a routine really helps the baby go to sleep. They don’t mention it really helps mom keep her marbles. Since Kole has started bath time he has screamed through it. I was chalking it up to the first time I put him in there he went under. It was an accident. He’s got a little tub that goes in the sink and I had it full and was soaping him up and he got mighty slippery and went under. No harm done. He was pretty scared- but survived! Cut me some slack. I’m new at this. I figured he had lost bath-time trust in me and that’s why he screamed all the time. Krissy came over this week and spent the night and when I was getting Kole’s bath ready I was telling her how much he hates having a bath. Being an experienced mom, she thought this was fishy. After feeling the bath water she informed me that he screamed because I was basically dipping him in lava. The water was way too hot for a baby. I thought it felt great. She did up a new bath and wouldn’t you know it Kole loves bath time. I can’t ever get him to get out. He insists on staying in until he’s pruned.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

The New Order

Since I don’t have the Internet at home- I’ll be blogging “offline.” Meaning typing my posts at home. It’s actually quite therapeutic makes me feel like I mean something. To someone. Other than Kenner and the Baby. Then, the one time I am online a week- I’ll post what I wrote. So… keep up with me. Go back and see what's been up.

Sweet Dreaming

Kole is now 2 weeks and 5 days old. 10 out of 10 times when someone comes to see him or calls in to check on us (still in the wallows of agony...PS.) the first question they ask after commenting on his size and asking if he really is only over 2 weeks old is: Is he a “Good Sleeper?” In other words, “Welcome to the world of competitive parenting.” This is the question all parents use to gage themselves against other parents. Because, as every overachieving parent knows, it’s all about the sleep: how soon your child does it through the night, how long, and how deeply. It’s the single biggest mark of success or failure in the first three months of parenthood. For a 2 week old baby I think the question is slightly premature and frankly none of any one’s GD business. But, since the question comes up… yeah… every day I have learned that this harmless question is actually a minefield. Seemingly harmless, but what the person really wants to know is, “Are you a lazy slacker?” Or, if they’re newish parents, “Are you worse at this than I am?” My follow up question is “What constitutes a Good Sleeper?” Kole can close his eyes and breathe at the same time. So, yeah, by that regard Kole is a good sleeper. The little duckling goes down at 11 pm. The little duckling gets up at 3:30, almost on the dot. We have a night cap. For roughly 30 or 45minutes. A bit of rocking and the little duckling is out. Until 8 or 9. A couple times as early as 7:30. To me… that’s a Good Sleeper.

Your judgments?

Sleep When the Baby Sleeps


That’s the old adage and the advice I got nearly 800 times once I delivered the little man cub. “Sleep when the baby sleeps.” It makes sense and with 2 and a half weeks of experience I can testify it is not hard to do. When the baby sleeps I am most definitely asleep. I couldn’t stay awake if I tried. His days and nights are off and so are mine. Big whoop. We’ve (meaning I’ve) adjusted. Him and I don’t have any place to be the next day so who cares if we stay up until 2 AM and then sleep the afternoon away. Not I said the mamma.

To this adage I wish to add my own:
Sleep when the baby sleeps.
Cry when the baby cries.

I had heard of the Baby Blues. However, before bearing a child never understood why someone would be sad about a perfect, beautiful, sweet smelling (when clean and changed) baby. As it turns out you’re not sad about your baby at all. Sure looking at the baby can trigger the tears but so can looking at the jar of jam you took out to put on your toast.
Last week Ken came home from work and he offered to go get some ice cream. I cried. For like 20 minutes. A few days ago I went with the baby and sat outside around 9ish when it had cooled off a bit. I noticed some yard tools that had been left out from before the baby was born. I lost it. Cried and cried and cried. Another time I had just bathed, fed, diapered, and cuddled Kole. His little lip started shivering. I started to sing a song from 7 Brides for 7 Brothers. Kole kept his composure and I lost mine. What am I crying about though? How are all of these linked? Why won’t it stop?
The phone will ring and I see who is calling and I immediately get a lump in my throat. I want to talk. I do. I want to share what is happening. You are my friend. But I can’t. I’m too much of a crybaby.
It’s really hard convincing Ken (or anyone) that I am happy and love the baby when I am saying it all through sobs.
Send in the clowns. It feels like we’ll be here for a while.
On second thought- don't. I can't handle any visitors.