Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Get me out of here!

Paris, New York, London, Milan--we have a problem. As much as my daughter loves looking at herself in her latest fashions, she HATES clothing stores. WHAT?!

And it's not just clothing stores. It's any section of a store that has clothes in it. She loves Target, but the second we go into the clothes section, she screams her head off. Carters? Children's Place? Baby Gap? Babies R Us? FORGET IT. She has had temper tantrums in these stores (more than once) which included ripping clothes off the racks and flinging them across the aisle. When I try to hold her, she wiggles and squirms so violently that I'm afraid she's gonna fly herself out of my arms and onto the floor. Somehow she has already learned that if she acts like a crazy lunatic, her mommy will frantically run to the nearest exit.

After many attempts to take her clothes shopping, I've realized that it’s just not happening--yet. I'm hoping she will grow out of this phase and will be ready to shop til she drops by the time spring comes around. When I was pregnant, I had visions of going out shopping with Aubrey, but as long as these tantrums keep up, it looks like I'll be shopping for her the same way I shop for myself--online!

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Trade Off

I'm learning that sometimes a mess is worth the time it takes to clean it up. Aubrey loves getting into things. She loves to open the nightstand by my bed and rip everything out. We joke and call her "Hurricane Aubrey", because after she's done with a drawer or cabinet it looks like a hurricane hit. I should also mention that my nightstand is where I hide everything that I don't know what to do with. For example, old receipts, playing cards, chargers, boxes of check books, etc. So, she has plenty of things to scatter all over the floor and entertain herself with for quite a good amount of time.

Hurricane Aubrey used to bother me. I would say, "NO!" and pull her away from the nightstand or drawer (whatever room she was in at the time). Then one day, I really needed to get ready so I could leave the house early. Her toys just weren't keeping her entertained. So, I let her tear apart my nightstand. For THIRTY MINUTES she sat and played! I was right near her getting ready, and she didn't even fuss once for my attention.

After this experience, I realized that sometimes the mess is worth the five minutes it will take to clean up after she's done. If it buys me a half hour to get ready, I don't care what she tears apart! Now I’m not trying to be clever, but I really do need to go clean up the mess she made in my bedroom this morning before naptime ends!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

My Little Teenager

So I know people warned me that the first year of motherhood would fly by, but I had no idea that by 11 months my daughter would be acting like a teenager.

Let me start by saying that for the last couple of weeks, Aubrey has really loved wearing her headbands and sunglasses. She takes them out of the drawer herself, and even tries to put them on. So today she was hanging out in her bedroom, rockin out to Isty Bitsy Spider (the girl can dance), wearing her Dora shades and fancy headband. She also happened to be holding my cell phone. Then she started walking across the bedroom floor (yes, she is walking now!) in her little black leggings, hot pink baby UGGs (actually they are TUGGs, Target brand UGGs...), holding the cell phone up to her ear, chatting away. She seriously looked like a little mini 15 year old. She even bitched at me when I took the phone away!

Before I had a baby, I didn't have any idea of just how big the personalities of almost-1-year olds were. I figured they still were very “baby” like and only did things like try to walk and say “mama” and “da-da”. This girl has got sass, a love for electronics, an eye for fashion, and she does not like "no" for an answer. I don't know about you, but that sounds like a teenager to me! Perhaps she is already going through the teenage phase, and she will be a mature, beyond her years, 15 year old instead? Ah, I can dream.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Recharging Your Battery

I think I am very lucky that I am surrounded by people who allow me the time I need to recharge my batteries. My mom is always around when I need her, and my husband never puts up a fight if I want some time alone.

This past weekend, I went up to Connecticut to visit one of my best friends (and mom to be!) while my husband stayed home with Aubrey. God bless him, he even conquered the grocery store and got all but one item on my very long list! Of course I missed Aubrey from the second I walked out the front door, but I knew that my trip to Connecticut was worth it. Not only did I get to spend two days with my friend Michelle (doing nothing but shopping, talking, and eating--woo hoo!), but when I came home yesterday I felt like I had just had a two week vacation.

I've written a lot on my blog about how much I treasure date nights or "me" time, and the reason is because it makes me a better person and a better mom. When I get opportunities to "recharge my battery", I always come home happier and more energized. Nine out of ten days with Aubrey are so much fun and I enjoy every second with her. But for that one day out of ten that makes me want to run for the hills, knowing I have a date night or alone time helps me to get through it with my sanity still intact!

I know that if I have another baby it will be harder to get this time alone, so for now I am going to take advantage of it and savor every quiet second!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Miss Independent

Aubrey and I spent the morning at the library for Moms group. It was also the library's song/story time, so it was quite busy in there (I felt bad for the poor folks who thought they were going to have a quiet morning at the library!). Before I go on, let me just say that my library has the BEST kid's section. It's insane. You could spend hours there and not get bored. Toys and tunnels, blocks and games, computers and books (although, the books are the most unpopular option in the kid's section!), there is something for everyone. It's especially entertaining because you are in a room full of other moms and kids. If any of you moms out there are looking for a way to kill a morning or an afternoon, check out your local library!

Anyway, after the stories and songs they opened up the room for open play. I was sitting on one of the chairs talking with a couple of other moms, and when I let Aubrey down to go play, I assumed I would be chasing after her the whole time. Much to my pleasant surprise, I sat and talked with the other moms for 15 minutes while Aubrey made her way around the room playing with all the toys. I don't think she even looked at me once, but more importantly, I didn't have to GET UP once. YES! It was awesome.

Eventually we had to leave the private room (the one they use for classes), and play in the main kid’s area. Unlike the private room, there were no walls keeping her contained, so she was free to roam. And roam she did. I was actually sweating after awhile from chasing her so much. I don't mind her being on her own (when she's in my sight of course), but when she is trying to climb up rocking chairs and attempting to rip up library books, I feel that's the time to go chase after her.

Despite the sweating and constant chasing, our trip to the library made me really happy today for various reasons. For one, it counts as my exercise for the day. If I break a sweat, that is exercise. Secondly, I got to know some more moms in my group. Sometimes you don't realize how nice it is to have other "mom" friends until you get to know other moms. It's so nice to talk to other women who understand exactly what you're going through. We were talking about naps today, and one very new mom said, "Sometimes when I hear him wake up from his nap, it makes my stomach sick because I still need a break." How great it was for her to be able to say that, and not be judged, but instead have a room full of other moms say, "Girl, we know EXACTLY how you feel."

And lastly, the trip today made me happy because Aubrey loved it so much. I got to watch her play, and I saw how independent she really is. Even though she spends every waking minute with me, she didn't even blink when I was out of her sight, and she was surrounded by strangers. She was off and running, "chatting" with other moms and babies. She was playing with other kids as if she's known them for years months.

As I watched her from a distance, she never once stopped to look for me. You may think this would make me sad, but it made me so happy to know that she feels safe in her world and that she’s not afraid to explore or be away from Mommy. It's been a crazy 11 months, but today made me feel like I must be doing something right.