I hope you had a nice relaxing 4th. I had to work (yay for time and a half!) but we celebrated the 4th on the 3rd at a friend's house with lots of grilled meat and other goodies. Ruby and her friends (10 girls, 1 boy, ranging in age from 1-5...damn, we reproduce a lot!) ran around catching lightning bugs. At first she didn't know what the heck was going on but when she realized that they were bugs she was like heck yeah! Amazingly she did not smoosh a single one!
This 4th marked Ruby's first sparklers and her first fireworks. As soon as one sparkler burnt out she was asking for another. She was very mesmerized by them. During the *cough* illegal fireworks she plugged her ears and asked repeatedly to hold me (daddy wasn't good enough, apparently) but when they were all done she asked for more.
She was up past her bedtime but is usually pretty good as long as she is distracted. Before we left I changed her and put on her pajamas, that way, when we got home we could throw her right into bed. At home she went right down and I followed shortly after. How did you celebrate the 4th this year?
Yesterday Ruby started a 4-week class at a local gymnastics place. I made the mistake of not bringing an extra set of clothes and so of course her shirt was covered in tomato soup (no biggie) when I picked her up from daycare and she decided to take a massive poo that creeped up and out the back of her diaper (biggie). A little water later and Ruby took to the mats, her pants a little damp, but hey, you do what you gotta do.
As I figured she would she had a great time swinging, jumping and running around like the high energy kids she is. To us, her craziness is normal if not a little tiring. It's when I get around other kids who are so quiet and that generally stay in one place that I start to wonder if something is wrong with her!
No, really, I don't think there is anything wrong with her but when she is the only kid in a group of 6 who isn't following the teachers instruction nicely and is instead running to and fro you start to wonder. Maybe you're thinking, just make her stop and listen! Well, I would welcome you to try my friend. She is a force to be reckoned with. Thankfully the instructor didn't seem to think that this was abnormal so I did my best to keep her focused but then just kind of let her do her thing. Which she did.
If you know me at all you know that I am not a germaphobe. Those foam blocks? They grossed me out. When I jumped into the pit to catch Ruby as she jumped from the side my feet touched the bottom and it was wet. Wet with what I don't want to know. Gross. Plus you could just feel the foam particles everywhere, like they were sticking to your skin. Yuck. I'm sure I inhaled some. Not pictured, me trying to haul my ass out of the foam pit. It was about seven, maybe eight feet deep and not very easy to maneuver around it. As I pulled my ass over the side I was all like You'd better not be getting pictures of this! and Heath was all like it's too late mwuahahahahaaaa!. Little does he know of my editing prowess! Mwahahahaha! Although I may be keeping a couple of them around to hang on the fridge for a little motivation.
My main goal with the class was to get her out of the house, doing something physical but not (very) controlled, for us to spend time together, and of course the fact that she'd more than likely go to sleep without any trouble whatsoever did not cross my mind at all.
Yesterday our AC unit was out (fixed today, thankfully the compressor was under warranty so it was $800, rather than $1300 to fix) so we decided to escape the heat by going to the mall. Starbucks for mom and dad, play area for Ruby, boom.
I love/hate this play area. I love it because it's free and Ruby can run around like a nut, burning off energy, while I drink coffee or let H watch her while I run to check out the clearance racks at the Gap. I hate it because even though there is a height limit parents let their kids play there anyway so there are 9 year olds doing parkcour off of the ducky while Ruby and other much smaller toddlers are around.
Yesterday Ruby had tried a couple times to cross from one side of the rattle to the another using the narrow handle. She fell but got back up and tried again. The third time she made it across. Good job, Ruby! (giving thumbs up) High five! I didn't think she'd run over to me, I thought she'd just go back and do it again, but she ran over to my and gave me a solid high five. smack!Then she ran back over and did it again. This time once she got to the other side she held up her hands, jumped up, and down and let out the most excited, high-pitched, horror-movie-esqu, scream EVER. It was awesome.
Then she ran over to both of us and gave us double high fives before going back and doing it again and again. During this one minute moment in time I was the proudest I have ever been of her. And fuck, that smile on her face and that squeal of pure delight....damn.
I have a confession: last year I completely dropped the ball on Father's Day and did pretty much nothing for Heath. I had originally planned on making an adorable Firefly cross stitch (from this Etsy shop) but like many other crafty projects it fell by the wayside. Even worse, for Mother's Day he had gotten me a massage package. Yes, I am totally lame. So this year I had to make sure that I wasn't lame.
Heath is a big fan of the Ren Faire but me, not so much. This past weekend was Steam Punk Weekend so I asked if he wanted to go, he said yes, so we did. I don't know if either of us really had all that great of a time (other than checking out the cool costumes) at least until the last 20 minutes that we were there. I asked Ruby is she wanted to get her face painted. She said, "yeah!" but I could tell that she was kind of like, "I have no idea what you're talking about!" She picked out a bee from the board and I sat with her while the lady painted on her face. She sat perfectly still, I was amazed.
When it was finished she looked in the mirror and immediately touched it and smeared it. No surprise, really. Then she looked at me and declared that I needed a bug as well.
Then apparently ONE cheek with a bug on it wasn't good enough so she picked out the spider for her other cheek. The face painting segment of our trip alone was worth the trip up to the faire, the price of admission, and the $6 for the face painting itself.
Lastly we picked out some little horns for her to wear. The guy selling them kept insisting on giving her pink ones when she kept asking for blue (which I then vetoed because it was too Big Blue Nation for me) and then he kept making creepy remarks about how mommy needs to wear just the horns and a smile to thank daddy. Ugh. Really?
After a couple of hours at the faire we drove on to Louisville for a trip to the Cheesecake Factory. The last time we were here Ruby was 6 months old! That is far too long between CF visits. It was after 5 when we arrived and Ruby had not napped at all. She was pretty good considering, but she was still a little nutty. This picture below cracks me up. That is butter that she in nomming and that was Heath's reaction to seeing her nomming butter (and wiping it on her arms).
For dinner I had the Bang Bang Chicken and Shrimp, my favorite, and for Ruby we got mini corn dogs and fruit. Besides using her food as maracas there wasn't much else going on in the way of her actually eating it. In the end we basically paid $6 for a strawberry and an all beef hot dog. This is why 99% of the time we just make her share with us. That's like a piece of cheesecake right there! (red velvet cheesecake? don't mind if I do!)
Normally we wouldn't let her keep her feet on the table but I could tell that meltdown was getting closer and we really just wanted to get through our meal. In the end the meltdown never came and she made it all the way home without falling asleep. This meant that she'd stick her thumb in her mouth and start dozing off and we'd talk with her or mess with her so that she wouldn't fall asleep. Anything to ensure that we could put her to bed as soon as we got home and she'd sleep her usual 12 hours without waking up!
Most of the time, like 90% of the time, I am not at all mushy about motherhood. You're more likely to see a post recapping Ruby's latest diaper-removing stunt or a picture of her throwing a temper tantrum in the middle of the store than a post about how I think motherhood is the most amazing thing ever. But damn if it isn't tempting, when I come home from a photo shoot to this beautiful girl waiting for me by the window. I love her so friggin' much.
During my pregnancy I was not keen on any, like any, photos being taken during any part of the birthing process. Thankfully though, my doula snapped a few in the moments right before and immediately following Ruby's birth. Somehow, a chunk of the photos were deleted from the SD card before I had the chance to copy them to the computer. I had the horribly unflattering photos of me pushing and screaming my head off but none of the photos afterwards.
Fast forward almost 2.5 years later and I just now recovered the files from the card. Thankfully I was able to recover all of them and they are now backed up and then backed up again. So here are a few photos from about 15 minutes after Ruby was born.
Last Friday I went thrifting with a friend and decided to put myself on a budget of $20. Our first stop was the Salvation Army. I found a couple of pieces of clothes for Ruby...actually 4 things, but I put two back because I felt like they were priced high for what they were ($4 for a t-shirt). It's never hard to find adorable stuff for her. Of course I had to have her model for me:
When I went in to get Ruby up and get ready for daycare she slowly stood up in her crib, her crazy Christopher Lloyd-esque hair flying everywhere, and started handing me all of her 'babies' which consisted of a bunny, Scout, Littlefoot, and a giant triceratops pillow pet. Only after I had all of those in my hands was I allowed to pic her up. As I held her and she snuggled with the armload of stuffed animals:
Me: Hi sweetheart did you sleep good?
Me: Can I have a kiss? (making kissy noises)
Ruby: Yeah (then she kisses me) I love you (followed by big hug) I love you, mommy.
Me: I love you too, baby girl.
So then I put her and the managerie on the changing table and start to look for clothes and I see this:
This past weekend I simply tried to distract myself as much as possible. Saturday was a Kite Fest at Jacobson Park so I took Ruby and was accompanied by friends. We spent most of the afternoon chasing her as she bolted across the open field, usually so that she could get all up in the business of some random, "PUPPY!!" that happened to be in her field of vision. Apparently a puppy kite is not as cool as the real thing.
What is distracting? Yes. Relaxing? No way, but whatever. I am grateful for my friends and for the fact that it was finally amazing and sunny and warm. If the weather had been gray and cold...well, I probably would have spent a larger chunk of the weekend crying than I did.