Thursday, March 29

two weeks.

well, it's been almost two weeks as a working mom. i love the job. i think that we made a good choice. but life is different. obviously. mostly, everything just takes a little more effort.

what i've given up:
-hours and hours of watching my kids play together
-homemade spaghetti sauce
-alone time
-hours of trashy t.v.

what i haven't given up:
-hugs and kisses and more hugs and kisses from hiba and matthias when i am home
-family dinners
-reading books and playing with my kids when i can
-hour of trashy t.v. (watching gossip girl the news right now)
-a tidy house
-girls' nights out
-date nights

and i'm sure there's more to come. but - so far, so good.

Friday, March 23

saturday's a rugby day!

as i was putting hiba and matthias to bed, i mentioned that i don't have to work tomorrow because it is saturday. to which hiba replied, with a huge grin, "'s...RUGBY DAY!". jason will be so proud.

so then we talked about rugby and it went a little like this...

me: yeah, it is a ruby day. we can go to the game tomorrow.
h: so, daddy will have to come back from the airplane, right?
me: well, no, he won't be back for the game, but we can still go even though he won't be there.
hiba: (look of total confusion. like she is trying to figure out how that is even possible)
me: i mean, there will still be a game and it will be at the rugby pitch, but daddy won't be there. we can still go and cheer for his team.
hiba: well, sometimes daddy is a stormer. so are there going to be stormers?!?! stormers are awesome!!
me: yep, that's right.
hiba: (huge smile) yay!! i love the stormers. (pause) wait, will there be any bad guys?
me: yep, memphis.
hiba: ooooooo. memphis. we don't like them. but we like the stormers! and do you know what?!?! i think that precious* is a stormer, so he will be there and i'll watch him play and yell "go precious go!". what do you think of that?

it's great to know that jason has her completely indoctrinated at such a young age. :-)

*precious is a guy on jason's team. his real name is patrick. he is not a creepy guy or a made-up friend, as some people might think that he is. 

Thursday, March 22

the week thus far (in short note form)

sunday: day before i start my job. trying to get everything ready for that. (babysitter - check. grocery shopping - check. laundry - check. bedrooms cleaned - check. ideas for the kids this week - check. coffee set on delay brew - check.) hear the news that jason's uncle (his dad's younger brother) has passed away.

monday: i start work. orientation begins at 7:30 a.m. jason closes at work. he's not home till after 11 p.m. i survive my day, even get some cleaning and house stuff done in the evenings, as well as a few hours of trash tv shows. awesome. think this will be easy managable. i stay up way too late waiting for jason to get home.

tuesday: first day of real work. i love it. a little more overwhelming, but the good kind of overwhelming. jason goes to the doctor and finds out he has nerve damage in his shoulder/neck/arm. still no feeling in half of a finger. no rugby for two weeks. thunderstorms cancel rugby practice, so jason's home for the evening. i get housework and dinner done again, think i'm getting the hang of this. jason and i stay up way too late hanging out and playing farkle. we toss around the idea of him going to new york for his uncle's funeral, but mostly decide he won't.

wednesday: second day of real work. i am exhausted. still really excited about the job. kids are doing well. a very loving and generous friend offers airline miles to jason. flight booked for thursday through late late saturday night. i'm glad he gets to go, but a little overwhelmed at the idea of being home with them alone this week. should definitely go to bed early, but instead have girls night in at jenny's with wine and sushi, but no early bedtime.

thursday: good day at work. i think i'm learning a lot and have figured out a lot of what i will be doing. haven't actually done anything yet, but we're getting there. get a call from the preschool that we were planning on having hiba and matthias start in april for them to tell me that they actually won't have an opening for hiba until may. but matthias has a space. bang my head on my desk. jason leaves for new york after coming home to frantically pack and give good-bye hugs and kisses. i immediately put in a pick-up order at pei wei and make the kids pbj for dinner. no attempt at housework or a real dinner. helped hiba clean up her room, let her play on my kindle, and promptly forgot she was still up since she was so quiet.

so now we're up to friday. (well, almost). one more day of work and then the whole weekend. there is a home rugby game we might go to if the weather is nice even though jason won't be there. there are parks and the library and the trolley - lots of fun stuff. there is also the couch and yo gabba gabba on netflix. we'll see what wins out. and jason will be back for sunday, so we can survive till then and then start a whole new week after that. hopefully week with less chaos, more consistency, a little bit of noramal. although i have a feeling that all of those words aren't going to apply to our lives for a while.

thank goodness that super grammy is coming to the rescue on monday!

Monday, March 19

one day down.

well, we survived today.

at least i think we did - jason is actually still at work, so we'll see when he gets home. haha.

it was actually a pretty easy day (again, at least from my perspective). jason has been closing most monday nights, so he was home with the kids this morning. the preschool they will be going to doesn't have a spot for them until the beginning of april, so the girl that has been watching them while i was at estem, christina, is coming to our house each day this week. so today, it was just a half day for her, which is basically what the kids were used to. so except that i was gone all morning, it was a relatively normal day for them. we'll see how they do tomorrow, when jason and i will both be working all day.

my workday was just orientation - general company info, paperwork, procedures, paperwork, rules, paperwork, and then more paperwork. so i didn't do anything that really pertains to my job, but i am still excited about it. i think that easter seals will be a really great place to work, and then little bit that i did learn about what i will be doing is pretty exciting to me.

and this evening was great too. the kids were in great moods, they were happy to see me, i was happy to see them, i was motivated to get the "home" things done. so the playroom is picked up, dishes in the dishwasher, kitchen straightened, bathrooms cleaned, kids bathed, bedtime stories read, and matthias is in bed. pretty good, if i do say so myself.

so, we'll see how tomorrow goes. tomorrow will be our first real day - both jason and i working all day, the kids with someone else the whole time, my job actually starting. i'm excited. optimistic about how this will work, still a little nervous, and quite curious to see how life is going to keep changing. i'll let you know how it goes!

Friday, March 16

my busy, busy week

so, you might be wondering what i have been up to all week. (i know you all deeply care about my every move. so of course you have been wondering...). well, wonder no more. i have been spring cleaning.

yep, that's right. every day, a different room. deep cleaning. it has made me realize that i need to do that more than just the spring. we aren't really gross or anything - i straighten and sweep and vacuum on a regular basis. and i wipe off any surfaces i can see. the problem is that i'm really short. spring cleaning. and i was actually motivated because i had to get it done this week. why? well, glad you asked.

because on monday, i start my new job! yep, you read that right. new job. full time. like a real, grown-up, go-to-work-everyday, this-is-what-i-want-to-do-when-i-grow-up type of job.

i am so excited about it. i will be working at easter seals in their waiver services program. i'll be doing part-time case management and part-time staff supervising. i'm excited about the challenge, i'm excited to be doing something that i think i will love, i'm excited that i got a real job that uses my degree that i don't have to go back to school for, i'm excited about interacting with adults on a regular basis. basically pretty excited.

i am more sad about the thought of not staying home than i thought i would be. i am ready for the change. i think that hiba and matthias will do well in pre-school and i think it will be good for them in a lot of ways. hiba is super excited about starting pre-school and matthias really has no clue about what is going on in life, so i haven't worried too much about telling him. we found a place really close to our house that is small and jason and i both like it, so i am excited to see how they do there.

it was a kind of hard decision. i have not been happy about staying home with the kids for a while. and it wasn't really getting better as they are getting older. i mean, there are days that i have loved, but overall - not my favorite. and jason was really great about understanding that. so we thought about it, prayed about it, talked about it, prayed about it some more and decided that this is a good decision for our family right now. it was hard. but something that i feel really good about, and i think (obviously i can't read his thoughts) jason feels really good about.

so, back to me. i applied for this job awhile back, when jason was gone for the weekend on one of his rugby trips. i applied for a lot of jobs that weekend. it was a long time of just me and the kids. so, a few weeks passed, i hadn't heard back from most of them (i didn't really expect to, mostly just practicing and polishing my resume), so i had kind of figured i would finish at estem this semester, which would be great, and look for something over the summer. and then easter seals called. and wanted to interview me. and then wanted to hire me. and actually offered me a different job than i even really applied for, because i am just that awesome. haha. (we'll see how awesome i am once i actually start working....ha.)

so, i start on monday. our life will drastically change on monday. a change that i am excited about. a change that i am nervous about. a change that i am very unsure about, yet so positive it is a good change at the same time. exciting stuff. scary stuff. crazy stuff.

so today, i clean the bedrooms. and then i'm done. yesterday was my last day at estem, so after the bedrooms are clean, i'm ready to go to work full-time. or at least the house will be clean and ready for me to go to work. and that means i'm ready too....right? 

Thursday, March 15

things i love (and hate) right now

1. this beautiful weather. i LOVE that my kids can play outside all day, the redbud tree blooming right outside my front window, the flowers popping up, the breeze, the way that warmer weather makes me happy.

but - i can't think about this summer and how miserable it will be. also, with spring weather comes spring allergies and sinus problems. a sinus headache with pressure making me feel like my face is going to explode is a less-than-fun way to wake up. thank God for sudafed (and that none of my family makes meth, so it's easy to get from the pharmacy).

2. books. matthias loves books. he spends hours (really, not exagerating), sitting on the living room floor, looking at books. he makes up stories or remembers a line here or there, and it is so cute listening to him. hiba likes to read too, and can memorize a book after hearing it one or two times.

but - i know, how can i hate books, right? well, they are all over the living room floor, all the time. and i love the books we have, but matthias does not really get the whole "be gentle" thing. which means they get stepped on and torn and then i get angry. also, they love the same books. as in, they love the exact same book at the exact same time (which leads to screaming and tearing) and they love to hear me read the same book over and over and over and over and over and over again. which, as you can see, i clearly love.

3. sand. we got matthias a sandbox for his birthday last september. but between the rain and the cold, the kids have not gotten to play in it much until the last week or so. and they LOVE it. the make cakes, they build hills, they have sand fights. what's not to love, right? and it keeps them entertained, happy, and relatively getting along for a large amount of time. which means i can do things like blog, look at facebook, clean the house. win-win.

until they come inside. which they do often. jason suggested that i just make them stay outside if they have been in the sand. they didn't really want to do that though. so they come in and out, or even just in at the end, and get sand EVERYWHERE. today, i have swept the floor 3 times. and not because i care about what it looks like. but because every time i sweep, there is a pile of sand from the exact spot that i just swept. there is sand on the couch. there is sand on the kitchen floor. there is sand on their beds. there is sand in the bathroom. and there is definitely sand on the floor by the backdoor. i'm pretty sure i will never sweep it all up. ever.

4. 17 months. that is the age difference between hiba and matthias. it is great, because they are basically on the same schedule and they are "best friends forever! yay!". they play games together, they read books together, they have picnics together, they run together, they laugh together. it is so fun to see them love eachother.

but. they also scream together. and hit. and bite. and argue. and scream. and fight. and fight. and fight. and fight. i have started just telling them "work it out" when they complain to me about the other one doing something, but that usually ends in hitting or biting. which, i guess is a way of working it out. but i would love it if they would find a way to solve their problems that didn't end in screaming and tears.

all in all, life is pretty fun right now. beautiful weather, lots to play with, kiddos who play together all day long. and as much as those thing sometimes annoy me, i love them all so much more. 

Wednesday, March 14

it's hard to be 2

we never really went through the "terrible/tantrum twos" with hiba. i mean, we thought we did. looking back, she was an angel. (ha - it's funny how time messes with memories). now, she definitely has a strong personality, which led to our fair share of fights, disagreements, struggles with her, but she is so verbal and just basically tried to reason with us most of the time. a lot of times (and still today), if we can get her to listen to what we say and give a reason for it, she agress. or comes back with a very reasonable (especially for a 3-year-old) counter-offer. and overall, she is a people-pleaser. she wants us to like her. she wants to hang out with us. she wants to be friends.

enter matthias. he is 2. he is not so much what i would call a "people-pleaser". he is a charmer. that is for sure. but he is also a "i'm gonna do things my way and you can live with it or leave me alone" kind of person. and if we think hiba has a strong personality - she's got nothin' on matthias (those darn second-born's. oops, that'd be my genes he's got....).

so i would say that we are in the midst of the "terrible twos". because really, many days his behavior is terrible. he is not terrible. he is still cute and funny and learning to grow up. but his behavior - oh. my. goodness.

for example, on tuesday morning, basically anytime i asked or even suggested that he do something, his response was to SCREAM "NOOOOOOO!", throw himself on the ground and/or run away from me. now the things were things like get his shoes so he can go outside, let me change his diaper, not dump sand all over the floor, let me wipe the snot rocket (or snot rocket ship, as hiba calls it) off his nose. in my opinion, all of those things actually benefit him and are not all that unreasonable. but that is obviously not his opinion.

and he is learning to talk (he says a lot of words, but i think he is still learning what they all mean), which also leads to a lot of frustration. if he has a request and can't think of the words, he just sits there and pants, fusses, and eventually screams. which is always a fun way to handle situations.

it must be hard to be 2. i think there is a reason that God made it so most people's earliest memories are a little later on in life. i mean, he can say words, but is still learning to actually use them. he is learning to do so many things - get dressed, brush teeth, eat, etc. - but can't quite do them by himself. he is learning that he can assert control, but there are boundaries that he is still figuring out.

but, if it hard being 2, i have to say - i think it's harder being a parent of a 2-year-old. it takes so much energy, consistency, love, attention, patience, energy, energy....things that don't come all that naturally to me. as matthias is growing, i am realizing how different he and hiba are. so everything that we did with hiba basically does not work with matthias. and things that we do with matthias do not work with her. so it takes a lot of on-the-job-learning, adjusting, and laughter.

i will say, that i love that he is getting older. even the screaming. because it means he is learning and growing and testing out this world, seeing how he fits into it. and that's a pretty fun thing to watch. even if it wears me out.

Monday, March 12

just another monday

today was a beautiful day. i really love this early spring. although i'm not looking forward to july. but let's just focus on the positive.

anyway. hiba, matthias, and i took a little drive to russelville to meet up with my mom and my grandma at a park there. the kids played, we had lunch, and took a little walk. we ended up on a bridge over a little creek and taught hiba and matthias how to play "pooh sticks". oh my. sooo much fun.

what a big boy!
hiba being tall. even taller than grammy!
the see-saw! 
hiba and GG 
hiba, GG, grammy, and matthias
hiba picking out a stick for "pooh sticks"
so whiny and so cute. and he knows it. 
trekking to the bridge
drop the sticks in..... 
and fast, fast, fast, look on the other side!
the final stick 
on our way home, we stopped at wal-mart for a way overdue shopping trip. it was actually semi-enjoyable. we got a good parking spot, a big cart, the kids were in good moods, short line - it ended with no tears from anyone, which is sort of rare when i have to grocery shop with both of them.

when we got home, the weather was still gorgeous, so the kids played outside for the rest of the afternoon. matthias did want to come in at one point, as he was covered in sand and water, but he just hung out and looked at books and then went back out to play some basketball.

he shoots....he scores!!
hiba's castle
this is where she likes to sleep outside

Friday, March 9

so blessed.

well, hello again. a lot has been happening around the pollack house. but more of that another day. today i want to brag on my in-laws. because they are awesome.

i know a lot of people don't get along great with their in-laws. and, i'm not gonna lie, there are times when the differences between me and my in-laws cause a little stress. but, overall, i am waaaaay blessed to have a monther-in-law that i like, that i like being around, and who loves me and my kids. i am so blessed to have a sister-in-law who likes hanging out with my kids and does it a lot. i am so blessed to have a second family that really is a family to me.

yesterday, i woke up with strep throat. i knew it was strep because i have the privilege of getting it about once a year. fun times. swollen glans, can't swallow, fever...awesome. and to make the day better, jason had rugby practice in the evening, and instead of being 70 degrees and sunny like it had been for the last week, it was cold and rainy. not the kind of day you want to be sick with two kids at home.

hiba was very sweet in the morning. she was so cooperative and even tried to get matthias to be good, although he wasn't really catching on to the mommy-is-sick-so-let's-be-super-good thing. so i texted lizzie (my sister-in-law) and kathy (jason's mom) to see if they would be interested in hanging out with my kids for a while. i was thinking a few hours so i could go to the doctor without them and maybe get a few hours of sleep alone, and they would get a few hours of human interaction instead of watching 17 hours of diego. because i am soooo not above them watching tv all day when i'm sick. don't judge me.

so, i got a text back from lizzie saying she would be there in about 30 minutes to get them. she came and picked them up, kept them all day, the kids ended up spending the night, and brought them back this afternoon.

so i got to sleep on the couch all day, go to the doctor without my two darling children, sleep some more, sleep until 10 this morning, get up, take a shower in peace, go get some food by myself, and come home and relax for a little bit before they got home. so even though yesterday was pretty awful for me (i HATE being sick. i'm a huge baby.), it was way better than it could have been. my kids got to hang out with their aunt, uncle, and grandparents, go to the library, eat real meals (because i'm also not above feeding my kids cookies or whatever they can reach for every meal when i am sick. don't judge me), and actually get attention. they even got to go to teen mops (because lizzie helps in the childcare) which is pretty much what hiba's week revolves around. she was pretty thrilled when she figured out she would not have to miss it. they were happy to be home and were so sweet to me today, making sure i'm feeling better and asking if i needed anything.

so today i'm definitely feeling better and although i know it due partly to the wonderful antibiotics i'm on, part of it is because i got to rest and let myself recover. so thanks, in-laws, for loving me and my kids and helping out. you all rock.