1 Year

It’s been a year since we lost Ben. He would have been 9 months old. I find it hard not to think about how life would be if he was in it.

He would have an adoring older sister who would give him plenty of attention, love, and lots of kisses.

He would be crawling and using one of the cats as a chew toy.

He would have that adorably adorable drool dripping smile.

He would have irresistible chubby baby legs.

For the longest time I was internalizing the grief. But last week I started thinking about him and just sat where I had been standing and was crying for the longest time.

Even though we were supposed to box these up months ago, his clothes are still in my bottom dresser drawer. His crib bedding and swaddling blankets are still in the office closet.

My head is telling me it’s time to accept it and put away his things.

My heart is telling me it’s not ready.

*Just Breathe

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Book Reviews: A Fine Dessert and Uni The Unicorn

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A Fine Dessert – Out of all the books I’ve reviewed for Random House, this quickly became my husband’s favorite. As you may know by now, my husband’s not very vocal but he said “This is a really great book. Nicely done.” He spoke one and a half sentences, y’all!

This is a book about four families over four centuries that make the same dessert, blackberry fool. It shows the way people lived in different times and how this special dessert has gotten easier to make in modern times. The book includes the recipe for blackberry fool, which we can’t wait to try.

I love the unique topic and how it brings the history of food in a form that is entertaining and educational for kids.

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Uni The Unicorn – The hummingbird always pays close attention to the illustrations of a book and loves to hear how it’s done so this book really appealed to her. It’s so vibrant and fun.

Uni the Unicorn day dreams about playing with a little girl but is told there’s no such things as little girls. At the same time, there’s a little girl who dreams of meeting a unicorn and going on adventures.

Did I mention it’s about a unicorn? I did? How in the world can you pass up a book about unicorns, one of the best things in the world. You can’t. And yes, I do want to believe that they’re real.

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Blog Love

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Usually, I pick blogs I’ve been reading and give out some blog love. This time though, I would like you to share your blog in the comments with a little description and then I’ll make a list and post them next week.

So, c’mon. Get in on the blog love!

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My Therapist Is On Vacation For The Next Two Weeks. I Apologize In Advance.

I was at Target and as usual, bought much more than I planned to. You go to Target for a bottle of shampoo and end up spending $200.

After getting the things I needed, I got the hummingbird some new clothes, My Little Pony socks, and a freaking Frozen comforter. For no reason whatsoever! We give her treats occasionally for doing well in school, keeping her room clean for a week (that lasted less than a day), putting her plate in the sink, etc.

But I’ve been noticing that it’s been happening more often and I realize that I’m spoiling her and need to stop this shit.

I started to wonder if it’s because she’s an only child and I’m trying to overcompensate? Or parents of more than one child can indulge their kids too and it doesn’t matter if you have 1 kid or 4.

The other part of it is spoiling the hummingbird came more often after we lost Ben. At the time, I was so far off in my head and emotionally wasn’t there like I should have been. That’s when the treats started to become more frequent. My husband has been doing the same thing since.

I know the only way to solve this is to quit buying all this crap I’m spoiling her with. It’s one of those things that’s easier said than done though. But I really need to come up with some boundaries.

Do you treat your kids? How often? Is it only for special occasions or can it be random?

*I’ve read this back and it might not make any sense. I just don’t want to raise a spoiled brat. So, I wanted to know if you do the same with treats or if I should put the brakes on it, etc.

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Essential Oil Junkie

A few years ago, I became a major tea freak and went crazy for everything Teavana. This time around it’s essential oils. I’ve used them for years in the skin care products I make, in my favorite non-toxic cleaner, and soap bars. For several months now, I’ve been using them on myself and recently started to diffuse in the house.

After trying several different brands, I found I like doTerra the best. I’m not getting paid way to say that by the way. I was a little worried about getting a proprietary oil since I’m very particular about smell and the first oil I decided on was Serenity. Among the blend is lavender, roman chamomile, and vanilla bean.

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I decided to buy the oils straight from doTerra since I read what seemed like too many comments on Amazon saying some of the oils seem fake.

I also go these glass roll on bottles along with fractionated coconut oil to mix in with the oil. It makes for a less messy application. The hummingbird was seeing me put this on my feet every night and now she loves to use it too. When in doubt about where to place essential oils, place it on the bottom of your feet, under your big toe. Feet have the largest pores so it sucks that oil right up.

After so long, I decided to try doTerra Balance and Breathe since I had the flu (using OnGuard is great too) and couldn’t stop coughing, plus asthma. I also finally got a diffuser.

The first diffuser I got works really well but it’s small and only last for 3 hours at the most. I realized that I need to spend more money for one that will last through the night. So, I just got this one that I’m very happy with and it lasts several hours. I’ve already put the smaller diffuser in the hummingbird’s room, which she really likes.

The only issue I had with the new diffuser, which was my own fault, is that I didn’t put the lid on very well so water sloshed all over the place.

I’ve been very pleased with the smells of the oils I’ve gotten so far. I have the nose of a dog and can gag at perfume smells especially if it’s to overpowering but I haven’t had that problem with these oils. It can take a few tries to get used to the smell though.

During the day, I diffuse Balance, which has spruce, blue tansy, and frankincense. It promotes calmness and tranquility.

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At night, I alternate with Breathe, which has lemon, peppermint, and cardamom, and Serenity.

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Because of my anxiety and insomnia, I feel like some of the oils I’ve been using have helped to lessen the effects of all my nighttime worry, stress, and panic I have once I hit the bed.

There are several more doTerra oils I want to try out but because of the expense, I’m trying not to go crazy. I’m still on an anti-depressant but it’s nice to incorporate something more natural to help with my anxious feelings.

Something else I started using since the winters are so tough here and I have SAD during this season is an energy light lamp. I wish I had gotten one sooner. I finally decided on Lightphoria which is pricey but I wanted to get something that wasn’t going to break within a week.

So, while essential oils and light therapy doesn’t miraculously cure you overnight and I still have my bad days, I’m finding that it has been helping to make things a little less overwhelming.

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Kids Have No Filter

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Kids love to tell the truth, the more brutal, the better. Kids will most certainly keep your ego in check… and possibly embarrass the hell out of you.

After putting my daughter to bed…

5 yo: Will you tell me if you’re going downstairs?

Me: I always do. You know, you don’t need to tell me that every night.

5 yo: I know. But you’re old and might forget.

~~~~~

When I made spinach and goat cheese quiche last week.

Her: Mom… this really doesn’t look good.

Her: And it smells like cat puke.

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Standing in line at Target.

Her: Mom, that lady looks like a grandma (the next lane over).

Me: She does.

Her: Is she the grandma you called an asshole for driving so slow?

Me: Well, umm, she might be.

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Marriage Before Kids Vs. Marriage After

Sex

Before – Having sex anywhere you please and for as long as you want.

After – Lying in bed together late at night, getting frisky, and then a few minutes later, hear the slightest noise and scramble to put your clothes back on when it just ended up being one of your cats getting into mischief.

The next morning while our young daughter is watching her favorite cartoons, run into the bathroom together, lock the door, and have a quickie. But our daughter always seems to have the spidey sense to figure out we’re missing and starts banging on the door, asking us why it’s locked. “Um, uh, your dad and I had something we needed to talk about really quick.” Or “Oh, was the door locked? I’m not sure how that happened.”

Showers

Before – Taking a shower and having my husband walk into the bathroom to join me.

After – Taking a shower and having my husband walk into the bathroom while I start thinking “Oooh, nice. We haven’t done this in a while.” Only to have him end up digging through the cabinets to find a princess band-aid for our kid’s boo boo. Also, having my husband and I actually say boo boo.

Romantic Nights In

Before – Cuddling on the couch, sipping some wine, and watching a movie.

After – Watching the same episode of Daniel Tiger for the 50th fucking time.

Talking About Our Day

Before – Having all the time in the world to discuss matters.

After – Trying to talk to each other while your kid says Mom? Mom? Mom? Dad? Mom? Mom?

Or talking as fast as an auctioneer when your kid leaves the room and trying to get in a week’s worth of talking within a few minutes.

Or filing it in your brain under “we can wait and talk about this without interruption once our child has moved out of the house”.

Going Out To Dinner

Before – Going to a sushi place and getting tipsy on sake.

After – Going to the “fancy” McDonald’s with a playground.

 Car Trips

Before – Listening to whatever you want, getting flirty and handsy with your husband, and being able to talk for hours.

After – Listening to your child start asking “are we there yet?” within 2 minutes of leaving for your destination because holy hell, they really do ask that and it’s not just something you see kids do in movies and get stuck hearing a Kidz Bop cd over and over while you try with all of your might to keep yourself from opening the car door and jumping out of a moving vehicle so you can escape the most annoying music you’ve ever heard.

What are some things you miss doing in your relationship after having kids? Also, can we start a petition to ban all Kidz Bop music for the sanity of all future parents?

*Sergei Polunin

** I got the hummingbird a Kidz Bop Christmas cd a few months ago and it was kinda cute the first time we heard it but by the time we got home, I wanted to rip my face off.

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