Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Blog a Day 'Til Baby(BADTB): Post 1

I decided that will post a blog a day until this baby comes. In my heart of hearts, I am hoping this kid comes tomorrow. I am going to the acupuncturist in the morning and asking her to work her labor inducing magic, then I am taking the Ladies to the hospital for the sibling tour so they can see where the babe and I will be staying and finally I have an afternoon doctors appointment. I think that either the hospital or the doctors office would be good places to start going into labor.

In reality, I am sure I will be waiting this out for at least another week or so, although the way I am feeling now makes me wonder how it is possible that this kid isn't ready to come out. It is certainly taking up a ton space in my belly and I have had both the Ladies try to speak to it in an attempt to coax it out, and by speak to it I mean yell in the general direction of my baby bump "Baby come out! Baby come out!"

 I haven't gone so far as to do the whole spicy food/eggplant parm route, but that didn't work last time so why even bother?

I will also try to refrain from making these posts "poor me" posts, even though I have had a few minor breakdowns, and instead just try to capture what the last week or so with just two kids is actually like. I will say we are trying to keep busy. We went up to the beach house for part of the weekend, the Lady had her first drop-off birthday party on Sunday and we cheered on the Wild One's dad in a Memorial Day parade.

This is the Lady's last week of school and I can't believe that she is going to go into a 4's program in the fall. I have started to really cross things off the to-do list in terms of getting everything ready for the baby, however that does not include actually packing a bag for the hospital or digging the infant seat out of the garage and putting it in the mini-van. All in good time. I figure as long as I get myself there in a timely fashion we will be fine, right?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Getting Away for the Girls Weekend!

On Friday, I left the Ladies behind and headed out in a "normal" car, which in all honesty felt very low to the ground in comparison to the height I must admit I am becoming accustomed to and enjoying in the mini-van.

I think that as a parent there has to be a bit of decompression time. And I will admit that I felt a little guilty, for not really feeling guilty as I drove down towards NYC to pick up one of my very best friends at Penn Station then through the Lincoln Tunnel on our way to the beach for our annual Girls weekend.

There is something to be said for spending a weekend in the company of women you met when you were 18 years old, and have continued to rely on, depend on, seek advice from, complain to and confide in. It helps that we are all moms with multiple kids, trying to navigate the everyday. Some of us work, some of us stay home, but it really is kind of freeing to have no walls up to be able to be yourself, not just the "Ladies mom" or my husbands wife, but a bit of that college aged girl who had a few hours to sit around a talk about everything and anything.

I will admit to mostly discussing our families and a lot of our conversations did revolve around parenting and motherhood

50% was about how cute are kids are and how much they drive us crazy
20% was about how we must be failing miserably at being moms
5% was about how we are amazing moms
10% how our husbands were faring at home
10% Celebrity gossip and all things US, Star, People related
5% Snack food discussions

All in all, it was a great weekend and as happy as I was to see the faces of not only the Ladies, but my husband who handled it all in his own way, I am already looking forward to next year and am grateful for not only the female friendships I have in my life, but for those few stolen days to nurture them and eat pepperoni bread and peanut butter M&Ms.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mother's Day and More from the Mini-Van

The Lady and I went to get our nails done on Mother's Day. It was nice to do something special with her alone and she was super excited that she got flowers painted on not only some of her nails but her toenails as well.

She is concerned about a recent chip that has formed and keeps telling me she wants to go back to the nail polish store and have them fix it. While I am glad we were able to do something together, I don't want her to get hooked on mani/pedis at three and a half. I think we will keep it to special occassions, but I am reminded that I will now have to go out and get some nailpolish remover and hope the Little Lady doesn't get too jealous that her nails aren't painted pink.

The Lady drying her nails. She also got a lollipop!

More from the Mini-Van

I am easing into the mini-van lifestyle. I will say that I drove our other car over the weekend and was a little freaked out that I was so low to the ground! We are still trying to navigate the DVD player, meaning I don't want it on everytime we get in the car and the Ladies are pretty insistant that it happen.

Here is the view out of my rearview mirror on a daily basis.

The Lady in her headphones.

The Little Lady totally passed out, but still wearing the headphones.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

It has been a very busy weekend for the Three Bean. We have been out and about all over.

Just want to take a minute to wish all my momma readers out there a very Happy Mother's Day. Thanks for reading and thanks for letting me share my stories.

I hope today is filled with flowers, "me" time, uninterrupted showers, homemade cards and kisses. And if it isn't, I hope you get at least five minutes to yourself locked in the bathroom with a magazine.

Have a great day!

Love and kisses,


Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Birthday To Me!

Thanks to all my well-wishers on fb for all your b-day comments. 35! Ugh.

Hoping to have a nice night out with my hubby. I think we might take the van out, maybe come home and watch a movie in the car. Who knows, the point is that we have the entire night ahead of us and even though I won't be throwing back any booze-infused drinks, I am glad to be celebrating my b-day.

Also want to wish a very Happy Birthday to my dear, dear friend Lauren. I love you and I can't imagine sharing a b-day with a better woman or a better friend.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Say my Name

As my due date fast approaches--5 weeks left to go--we are still up in the air on what to name this kid if it indeed turns out to be the Last Lady. We do have a few names but they are on a very fluid list that seems to change daily.

As always, I am checking out the celeb baby names just to see what new and unusual monikers are out there. So when I clicked on the article about Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon's releasing the names of their twins, I don't know why I was surprised by the ridiculousness of it all.

Boy name: Moroccan Scott
Girl name: Monroe (no middle name--like her mother)

The boy was apparently named after the top floor of Mariah's penthouse, the girl Marilyn Monroe. Hey, I applaud individuality and wanting to name your kids something that not everyone in their classroom will answer to, but Moroccan? Really? Really? Does Mariah know that these are children and not little frilly, pouf-pouf dogs that you carry around in a Louis Vuitton bag? Yikes. Hopefully they will call him Rocco. And hopefully we will decide on a name we like as well.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Momma in a Mini-Van or the Three-Bean Baby Driving Machine

Well, it finally happened--we got a mini-van.

Let's pause here for a second and let that sink in.


Can you tell I have conflicted feelings? Can you tell that even though our lease was up, on what some may deem as our equally uncool station wagon, and that we definitely needed a bigger car to accommodate our growing family, that the thought of an actual mini-van has haunted me for a while?

Let's be perfectly clear, the last time I spent any considerable time in a mini-van it was being driven by my then 19 or 20 year boy-toy (now my husband) around the streets of the town where we grew up in an ardent attempt to find a place for us to hook-up. I don't know if I should even be admitting to that because I am not 100% sure he won't still get in trouble for it. But in the spirit of full-disclosure, and the fact that he knocked me up three times leading us to this mini-van purchase, I am fully admitting it here.

Let's also be clear, I am not a car person. I have no idea about makes or models and I don't particularly care about all the bells and whistles. I am glad when the radio works and the AC does its job. If asked to identify the getaway car after a hypothetical bank robbery, I would maybe be able to tell you the color and if it was a very recognizable make like a Hummer or a VW Bug. But the terms "late-model sedan" or "V6 engine" mean less than nothing to me.

And yet I found myself trolling the Internet looking at any type of car that might accommodate my three kids and our uncanny ability to accrue stuff. I looked at SUV's and cross-overs. I researched price and style and I tried to figure out what would work best for us as a family. Sure, the smaller SUV's with the optional third row were more sexy than the boxy vans, but in all actuality they looked like a pain in the ass to get car seats in and out of and they were lacking on storage space.

So, I found myself one damp, chilly evening with my husband and the Ladies in the double stroller, a light mist falling on our heads, walking the lot at a local dealership looking at the mini-vans. They were spacious, they had dual-sliding doors, DVD players, storage space, all the things you want to hear when you are shopping for a family car. But I was still a little skeptical. Could I picture my kids in a van? Yes. Could I imagine myself driving one? Not so much. It isn't so much the cliche of being a mom in a mini-van, it is just that these things are so big and I am not used to driving such a large car. I mean, if we just had the square footage of the mini-van added on to our condo, I am not sure we would have to put the place on the market. The other issue is that these vans are all automatic. I haven't driven an automatic car since 1994, not since the days of the Chevy Cavalier and my first few months on the open road.

Well, we looked at the options, the Ladies got out of the stroller and sat in the seats for a while, we went inside and my husband sat down and talked numbers with the car guys and I tried to entertain the Ladies with glossy brochures and photos of our not so distant future when we too would be mini-van driving.

As it turns out my husband found a good deal at a different dealership and so a few nights later we repeated the scene, the Ladies once again in tow--this time strollerless and wandering aimlessly around the show floor trying to get into cars and letting me know that if we did get a new car, it should be red.

I will not get into the amount of things that happened/went wrong/needed to be accomplished in a very short window of time between the time when my husband called me on the Friday before Easter and let me know that the dealership in our town couldn't honor a deal that was being run by one in the town where we grew up (a short 1/2 hour away) and that we would have to go over to the other dealership on the Saturday before Easter in order to check out what their availability was, all before my husband left the following Thursday and our old car needed to be turned in just a mere four days after that. Phew.

The anxiety that this caused me could have induced labor. I will say (and I know this is technically a backhanded compliment) that although I think my husband could have been a bit more on the ball about handling all the ups and downs of this transaction (like perhaps starting to look for a new car more than a week and a half before the old one--one that needed repairs and to be inspected by the leasing company--needed to be turned in, and that only he could pick-up the new car from the dealership even though he knew he was going to be gone for a week. . .  I could go on, but I really am trying to be nice here and not get my blood pressure rising. . . ) in the end, he did take care of everything that needed to be done and he drove that mini-van off the lot with the Ladies all excited in the back and even told me he thought it was a "smooth-ride," when we both know it is a mini-van and I was super scared to drive it. So, I will say thank you to him and that I love him very much.

So like I said, the Ladies were very excited. The Lady had fallen asleep during the ride over to the dealership to pick up the car and the Little Lady was wreaking havoc indoors with her father, so when the salesman came out to show me all the bells and whistles that this new ride had to offer, I had to contend with the Little Lady climbing on the seats, trying to get into my lap and push buttons and throwing a fit because she wanted to drive. When the Lady woke up, we were able to get her into her seat, attach the headphones to her head and pop in Strawberry Shortcake. You better bet that I came prepared with some DVDs and quite honestly that was the only option in the entire van that I wanted to be proficient in before we drove out of there.

The Ladies on their maiden voyage in the mini-van.

The Little Lady really thinks she should be driving this thing. Note the amount of stuff already in the car and the fact that one part of the way back is down, but I can't figure out how to get the seat back up.
So, the next morning I put the Lady in her new car and drove her to school. Did I make my husband wait to make sure I could back out of the garage OK? Yes. Did he call me later in the day and ask why it took me 5 minutes to back out of the driveway? Also yes.

But now that I have almost 5 days of mini-van driving under my belt, including a two-hour drive to the beach house, I am trying to focus on the positives of this family machine and less on the stigmas of being a mini-van driver. I know that there is a divide out there in the parenting world about these vans. There are those in the "Loser Cruiser" camp and those in the "Swagger Wagon" one. I will say I was hesitant about joining the "Swagger Wagon" constituency, mostly because it seemed a little cultish. Every mini-van driver out there seemed to be trying to convince me to join their side. I also was convinced that the minute I pulled into my driveway in the new car, I would be compelled to get those cartoon stickers for the back window that represent each person in our family.

In the end, I think we made the right decision for our family. We got a nice new car with ample space for not much more than we were paying for the wagon. It has drop down DVD players with headphones for the Ladies and the option to watch two different movies at once, plus a rear view camera so that I can see if I am backing into any garbage cans.

It also has three free months of satellite radio. So I set the dial to the Grateful Dead channel and sometimes I find myself thinking about those other vans I might have spent some time in in my youth while waiting for a concert or two to start, and then I look in my little fish-eye mirror and catch my own little miracles in their captain chairs, singing off-key to the Strawberry Shortcake theme song while wearing their headphones and I think that maybe we made the right decision after all.