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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Now and Then - Camping with Toddlers

So sorry for the huge delay in blogging.  I really feel like I'm neglecting my dear readers that actually take the time to read!

This month has been crazy hectic with my shop.  The first half of the month was spent in a crocheting frenzy stressing out about show #3 (which was a big bust!), then I went out of town for a little over a week for my show and a trip.  That's right.  It's the time of year for the "H&C" annual camping trip on the coast!  This year, we were camping with toddlers!  The majority of the trip was spent talking about the differences from last years trip.  Last  year, Addie and Loren were just learning to stand up.  In fact, I believe they both stood unsupported for the first time during our trip!  They were just babies then.  We took 10 month pictures of the girls on that trip.

This year, we could barely get them to sit still.  Well, for part of the trip Addie had the flu (fairly mild, though. We thought it was a stomach bug until Willie caught it this week!), but while they were both active and feeling well, it was a pretty fun time.

Here's a few photos to show off our activities and what a difference a year makes with kids.

Addie and Loren in the tent last year

Addie and Loren in the RV this year
Addie and Loren playing on the beach last year

Addie and Loren playing on the beach this year

A comparison photo!
We knew during our trip that the differences were major, but until I looked back through photos from last year, I hadn't realized exactly how much had changed, or how much had stayed the same.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

This Must be Why They Call Me Crazy

Have you ever noticed with your mom friends that there seems to be 3 different groups of moms?

You've got the Group One over "here" that has 2 or 3 kids already, all close in age, along with the moms that plan to have 2-3 kids within the next couple of years.  They think this is a great idea.  They think "this way, I can get all of the diapers, sleepless nights, childbirth, and pregnancy over with all at once and move onto the fun times." Before I had Addie, I was part of this group.  This group that wanted to get this part of child raising over with all at once.  It's not that they don't enjoy this part of being a mom, they just want to go through all of the stages as few times as possible. 

Group Two, on the other hand, is over there on the other side of the room.  They've each got 1 toddler running around.  This is the group for only children, right? Wrong.  Well, technically they are still the only child, but Mom plans to have more.  Eventually.  You know, once their first kid gets a little older, a little more independent, maybe even starts kindergarten.  Group One looks at these moms like they are crazy.  They think "how could you want to start completely over after so long?!" In a way, they are right.  Essentially, you are starting over with a new baby once your mind and body are out of practice.  There are the pro's to this group, though.  Your body has more time to heal, the older child can "help out", you get some one-on-one time with the new baby to bond while your oldest is at school.

Then, you've also got Group Three. This group has been there, done that, and got a post card.  They don't need to go back.  They're done.  They've got their child.  He's perfect in every way, how could they possibly try to create perfection twice? Okay, maybe that's not really what they're thinking, but for one reason or another, they only want their one child.  Group One and Group Two don't understand it, but hey, who are they to say how to live your life, right?

Before I had Addie, I was part of Group One.  I figured it would be easier, they would be closer, and I could be "done" all at once.  This seems to be the most popular group.  Maybe that's because people are having kids later in life.  Maybe it's the high-powered careers more women have. Who knows.  All I know is that this is the going thought nowadays.

After having Addie, though, I slowly found myself joining Group Two.  I just wasn't ready to do it all over again.  As the time came to start talking about "trying" again, Willie and I both found ourselves avoiding it at all costs. Neither of us were ready.  We decided to wait a few years.  We're young, after all.  What's the rush? We'll wait until we're ready and we've got more income.

Once I started sharing this idea with others from Group One, I started getting these looks.  Looks that silently say you're crazy.  Out loud they would say something like "Oh wow! I don't know if I could do it all over again in a few years. I really want my kids close in age."  Sure, I know what you're saying behind those words.  You know what though? I'm starting to believe you.

Maybe I am crazy.  Maybe all those moms in Group One actually had it right, because let me tell you.  Once you hit those terrible two's, you kind of don't want to start over.  At least I don't.

Addie isn't even one of the really bad kids, either! She just won't do time outs.  Trust me.  We've tried it all, from standing behind her to make her not move, to re-starting a timer, and even using her bedroom! It just hasn't been working.  I have her say "sorry" and talk to her about her time out when she's done.  She won't do it.  When she does say sorry, she turns around and hits/pushes/bites immediately afterward so she ends up in another time out.  I know right now some of it has to do with her molars, but come on!!  How much more of this am I expected to take?! It's just been pretty intense.  We've had some discussions lately and we're trying some new things-one of which is less working during the day and more Addie time.  So far, it seems to be helping.

Either way, the thought of another toddler right now sort of scares me. If Addie is one of the easy ones, what will I do if my next kid is one of the hard ones?!  Maybe this is why they call me crazy.  Maybe they knew all along that the reason Group Two is so unpopular is because after the terrible two's, those moms start joining Group Three without batting an eye.  I know I sure find them appealing! I mean, hey! Two parents vs. One kid.  That sounds like a fair match to me!!