Life with two children is just wonderful. It's what we've prayed for and we feel very blessed. Some days are smooth sailing. Other days are more challenging. Today has started out to be one of those days.
For starters, we are all tired from not getting enough sleep. We have all gotten off schedule with the Thanksgiving holiday since Nicholas was out of school and Stuart was off of work for 5 days in a row. We stayed up later and later each night and slept later and later each morning. So now that we are back on a regular schedule, we are all feeling a little sleep deprived.
Last night, Rachel was fussier than usual. We tried to put her to bed around 8:30 but she didn't seem very sleepy. And if she is awake she likes to be held. You may have heard of such baby dolls as Baby Alive, Baby Cuddles, and Baby Swim. Well, we have a Baby Must Be Held and her name is Rachel. She will sit happily in the baby swing for a little while or lie on her play mat and bat around the toys that hang down. But once that newness wears off, she starts looking for someone to hold her. Once she is being held, all is well with the world. She smiles and looks up at you with those big blue eyes and eventually drifts off to happy baby dream land. You may hold her for a while longer just to be sure she is really asleep and then try to put her down in her crib. You may get 5-10 minutes of quiet, enough time to run to the bathroom or get a drink of water, but then you will inevitably hear her start to grumble as she realizes that she is no longer being cuddled. She is so sweet to cuddle with and we love holding her but seriously, I can't hold her all day long. Last night she decided to test us for all we are worth. She grumbled off and on from 8:30 when we first tried to put her to bed until about 2:00 am. Stuart and I took turns trying to ease her to sleep or burp her or change a diaper or feed her. When it was finally quiet, we simply passed out from exhaustion.
This morning, I slept much later than I should have. Rachel started waking up around 7:00 and I was still in bed. We usually leave the house around 8:00 to get Nicholas to school so I knew already that it had potential to be a hectic morning. I rolled out of bed to feed Rachel and get her ready for the day. Fortunately, she drifted right back to sleep so I was able to focus on getting Nicholas ready. I tried to wake up Nicholas. He seemed very tired and announced that he wasn't going to school today. He said he would rather just stay home and play with me. I didn't bother arguing with a half-asleep 4 year old because that would just lead to a melt down. So I just laid his school uniform out on his bed for him and encouraged him to go ahead and get dressed for the day because he said he was cold.
He grumbled about not wanting to wear his school pants. True, they are a bit too small for him since they are the same pants he wore all last year. They fit fine at the beginning of this school year so I didn't bother to get any new ones. But around the time that Rachel was born, Nicholas had a growth spurt. His hands and feet suddenly seem bigger, he seems to weigh as much as a 10 year old, and of course, his school pants now seem a couple of inches too short for him. Poor little guy, I send him to school like that anyway because I just haven't been able to get out and shop for new pants for him yet. Maybe I'll get that done this weekend.
I got Nicholas to go brush his teeth as he continued to say, "Ok, but I'm not going to school today." Again, I didn't bother arguing but gently got him to continue getting ready. We went down stairs where he had breakfast while I worked on making his lunch. Sometime during this, Stuart came down and was about to leave for work. Nicholas got his usual hug and kiss before Daddy left but as Stuart walked out of the house and closed the door behind him, Nicholas decided that he needed one more hug and kiss so he ran to the front door crying. The crying is definitely out of character but I think it was just a sign of how tired Nicholas was. Stuart heard him cry and opened the door back up for another hug and kiss. Then he left and I tried to get Nicholas focused back on finishing his breakfast. But Nicholas decided that he wanted us to leave for school at the same time that Stuart was leaving for work, so he grabbed his school tote bag and started heading out the door saying, "Wait, Daddy!" He ran out into the front yard with me right behind him. We weren't ready to leave for school yet so I just gave him a hug and suggested that we sit down in the front yard and wave to Daddy as he drove away. He was happy with that idea. Whew!
We made it back inside to finish getting ready and I went upstairs to get Rachel so we could leave. Nicholas was now back to saying that he wasn't going to school today. Ugh! He said he would rather if I just read his new library book to him, the one about the greedy bee. I said, "Sure, let's sit down and read that and then we'll leave for school, ok?" Fortunately, he said, "OK". So although it was already well past 8:00, we sat down on his bed and read about the greedy bee, complete with voice changes and sound effects from Mommy. Afterwards, he was happy and we all managed to get out of the house and off to school.
Amazingly, we got to school just before car line had ended. Thank goodness too because I had not found time to get a shower before we left so I just threw a hat on my head and left. I really did not want to have to walk him to class like that. He was excited to see his friend's mom was working the car line and she helped him out of the car. He walked off to class and looked back to wave and smile at me. Aww, sweet little guy :)
Rachel was still sleeping in the back seat so I went by Sprouts Farmers Market for some groceries while crossing my fingers that I wouldn't see anyone there that might know me and see me in my unkempt state. We made it home and I unloaded groceries and cleaned the kitchen. Then Rachel woke up so I fed her and she soon fell back asleep.
It's now 11:00 and I'm exhausted. I still haven't had breakfast or gotten a shower! I've got only 3 hours left before I leave to pick up Nicholas from school and I need to make several phone calls, get Christmas decorations down from the attic, research 501c3 non-profit status for my playground fundraising project, send an email out about the playground updates, make the bed, do laundry, vacuum the living room, clean out the skimmer basket in the pool, make a doctor's appointment regarding my high blood pressure (which doesn't seem to be going away post partum), etc, etc, etc. Oh yeah, and I need to find time to get a shower too!
Did I mention that Tylenol is my new best friend?
Update: The day did get better and Nicholas said he had a great day at school, especially in the computer lab. And we finally ventured to the mall and bought some school pants that actually fit him! Hooray!