Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Weary

I'm not weary of my job.  Not quite yet.  I'm just weary of interviews and new routines.

V and I went to meet a mom today, an old contact who we finally connected with, who just needs occasional sitting.  As I was sitting there, making sure I interacted with the kids enough, answered her questions "right," and looked like I was enjoying myself, it struck me: I'm tired of this.

I still love my kids; I don't want to give them up.  But can't I just keep them in my house, and never have to meet any more?  It's stressful.

Thankfully, there won't be too much more of this.  I'm very settled with my two families plus four or so occasionals, and that should do it.  Given that no one abruptly moves or has relatives come live with them.

On a happier note, I emailed the twins' parents to ask if they'd thought about anything past July (when my contract ends), and the gist of their response was, "We don't know the specifics, but we definitely still want you."  I'm so glad.  I don't know what I'd do if I had to give those kids up.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Babies everywhere

Nine people on my Facebook friend list are pregnant.  It's crazy.  I take back what I said the other day about actually not wanting a baby right now.  Didn't think that would last too long.

It doesn't help that the twins are being precious this week.  Time-outs, certainly, and more tears than necessary.  But Patrick's sweetest hugs before nap, Lilly's grand pronouncement of "I got teeth!" after lunch, and their usual adorableness are combining to make me love them.  I see them tomorrow, too, and V is watching Harper (which I miss a little bit, because I love taking her to Gymboree).  Then Thursday night, and hopefully it'll be late enough that I can put them to bed, then Saturday morning.  Strange week!

Things could definitely change, but right now, V and I are both off Thursday morning and early afternoon.  I hope that stays...Sunday we had a date day, and tonight we went to a bookstore, and we've just been enjoying each other's company so much.  I want more.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Life again

This upcoming week is very, very not frightening.  Last week, V and I were both working our tails off, which resulted in good things, like paying rent, and bad things, like barely seeing each other.  Today may be a date day...if we can recover from the cat keeping us up for two hours in the middle of the night.  Anyway, this coming week is going to be relaxing.  My schedule's a bit changed up, but still just the basics.

V is hoping to hear back from a family she's interviewed with and really likes.  Needless to say, we're really hoping it works out.

For possibly the first time in years, I'm actually at a place where I don't want a baby right now.  Usually, I know it's impractical, but that doesn't stop the desire.  But now I'm just not there, we just aren't there.  We want to move in to our own house, that we buy, that is all ours.  We want a better car.  We want to be a little more financially stable.  And after that, we want a baby.

I didn't expect marriage to slow down my babylust; I expected it to increase (now I'm a wife, I need to be a mom!).  But instead, it's making us both look at the things we want, now that we're together - not that we weren't before.  A home.  To cook regularly.  More friends.  We need a nest egg prior to a bun in the oven.

That's not saying we don't both go gaga over Andrew, the current World's Cutest Baby.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Twinsies

When I first started working with the twins, it was last July, and I signed a twelve-month contract.  Since I'm a little paranoid, and always like reassurance, I tossed out an email to their parents: basically it boiled down to "don't worry about any specifics yet, just want a lead on whether or not I need to start looking for a job soon."

What I got in return was an email from their dad, "I know where you live, so no, you can't leave," followed by an email from their mom.  She said they're talking about ways to make me "more mobile," which I love, and possibly getting them into some summer programs.  The email ended with, "We definitely want you to stay."

Then, she left me a long voicemail (V and I were watching Bug and Andrew tonight) about how schedules will probably change, but she doesn't have any reason to not still want me, her kids love me, and she's glad I want to stay.

And yes, this has been a day of twin-related posts.

Oh Patrick

It seemed only right to write a post about Patrick right after one about his sister.  He really threw me for a loop on Monday.

It was a pretty day, so I'd popped them in the stroller and we walked down to a local coffee shop.  I ordered a croissant, which came with grapes on the side.  The kids wanted to sit outside, and they wanted to sit in big chairs, so the three of us sat at a table.  They were sitting on the very front of those green plastic deck chairs so they could reach the table.  Lilly, who loves grapes, was devouring them by halves; Patrick chewed on some croissant.  He notoriously refuses to try "real" food, though he loves baby food fruit and the new squeezie pouches.

After about half an hour of sitting there eating and feeling like a table of adorableness, Patrick asked to sit on my lap.  I pulled him over, and asked him to try half a grape.  He eventually did, but he started coughing - and then threw up all over both our pants.  In the almost-year I've known them, he's never thrown up.

Naturally, that was a small disaster.  I had some napkins to try to wipe some up, and someone offered to get a cup of water, but that didn't get us very far.  We got into the bathroom (almost: the stroller didn't fit through the last door, so we had to leave it outside) and I stripped both our pants off.  I told Patrick that when he got in the stroller, I'd put his jacket over his legs.  That ended up working just fine.

I was in a stickier spot (no pun intended; that's just nasty).  I could walk the almost-mile back home with wet, icky pants, or I could improvise.  I had a long-sleeved shirt under a short-sleeved shirt; with a little creative effort, the long-sleeved shirt became a miniskirt.  I'm not sure whether the general populace would've preferred me in a miniskirt in midday or dirty pants, but at least I was more comfortable.

Well, except for the part where it was an improvised miniskirt in danger of falling down, with sleeves threatening to dangle out from between my legs, and it left my short-sleeved shirt on top showing a little more cleavage than I usually do, and I was pushing a double stroller down a main road at one in the afternoon.

All in a day's work.

Oh Lilly

Lilly is supposed to drink a certain amount of milk in the morning.  She isn't a huge fan of this task, especially as she gets older.  TV is a good incentive; after close to an hour, though, I turn it off.

So this morning, she sat there.  She'd already watched Fireman Sam and Play With Me Sesame.  I warned her that when Sesame was over, I was turning the TV off.  I did.  She screamed a bit.

She sat there for about fifteen minutes.  I was fully prepared to let her sit there till lunch.  Every now and then she fussed at me, or tried to kick Patrick if he came too close.  Finally I got her a straw, which she usually prefers to her sippy lid.  I stood there for another ten minutes holding it and trying to coax her to take little sips, again and again and again.  Finally.

She is, however, adorable with her hair pulled up in a ponytail.  It turns into an adorable mess of strawberry blonde curls.  I want a kid with curly hair.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Clothes (shallow title)

I've been terrible at blogging in March.  Blame it on the wedding, and the being sick.

One of the teeny-tiny frustrations of nannying is my total lack of control over the childrens' wardrobes.  Bug and Andrew both have awesome clothes, but Patrick and Lilly are...less adorably provided.  Don't get me wrong; their clothes aren't ugly.  I just don't dress children the same way their parents do.

I like bright colors, lots of leggings and dresses for little girls, funny slogans on t-shirts.  I end up carting around a little boy in a polo and khakis and a little girl in corduroys and a turtleneck.  They're still cute.  It's hard for those kids not to be cute.

When I have a kid, I will put him or her in adorable clothing!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The playground mentality

This morning, I took Patrick and Lilly to a local playground (over a mile, all uphill, but that's another story).  There were lots of kids, which I loved; the twins have gotten much more confident, and were interacting, climbing on everything, and sliding by themselves.

Keeping tabs on two toddlers at a playground is hard, especially once they decided they wanted to go to the big kids' one rather than the toddler version.  A handful of times, I'd help one climb a ladder, only to realize the other was waiting on me to help cross a bridge.  Lilly loved the bouncy bridge, but wasn't the greatest at hanging on.  A mom with a three-year-old and a baby in a front carrier was by the bridge, too, since her son also liked it; two or three times, she put out her hand to make sure Lilly wasn't going to fall.

At one point, another mom came over, looked around, and said, "Have you guys seen my daughter?  She was playing right here thirty seconds ago...in black pants and a pink shirt...Maggie!!!"  We all started calling, and not ten seconds later, a voice piped up from inside one of the slides, and a pink-shirted girl popped her head out.

What I love about the playground mentality, where to a degree all the parents watch all the kids, is that it's a microcosm of the idea that it takes a village to raise a child.  I'm a huge fan of that idea.  Obviously, I'm not going to drop my kids off and leave, but I love the peace of knowing that while I'm catching Lilly at the bottom of the huge slide, chances are good that Patrick is within two steps of another adult, who will in all likelihood not hesitate to help him should he need it.  And chances are, when I'm done catching Lilly, I'll be helping someone else's kid climb a ladder.

I'm not part of the Borg, but in some ways, I love the collective.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Funk be gone

I was in a funk this afternoon, for various reasons, and then I got a text from Bug and Andrew's mom asking if V and I could come sit last-minute so she could run errands.

Nothing snaps me out of a funk faster than an adorable, snugly baby asleep in a sling on me.
Though the Chinese we ordered, Bug's adorable obsession with wildflowers, and the ice cream her parents brought us back didn't hurt.

Now I'm ready for Monday!  Plus, V's brother and his fiance were briefly in town, and we made them breakfast (waffles with fresh organic strawberries and powdered sugar!) this morning.  Happy and yummy.  V and I are going to work on making friends in the area, so we're not so alone and so we don't sit on our computers all evening.

I miss Andrew, even if he did spit up 3 ounces tonight.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Awesome surprise, again

I keep expecting to be let down when it comes to my families, and I keep getting the opposite.  I won't complain in the least.

Katie and Sean's parents were the only ones I (or V) sit for who didn't know about the engagement/wedding/honeymoon.  I finally told them tonight (when their mom asked "So what's new?" it was a bit hard to leave out).  I expected a congrats, and then moving on to a different topic; for various reasons, I thought they would be polite, but not super interested or maybe comfortable.

Instead, I got:
a hug
many, many congrats
best wishes
inquiries as to our families
questions about our honeymoon trip
a small conversation on the legality of marriage here
a wish to pass on congratulations to V

Can I say, for the millionth time, that I work for and with the BEST families??

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Long days

I'm working long days this week, making up for the time off.  We definitely don't get paid vacation!  But truthfully, it's been so good to see my kids again.  Patrick and Lilly gave me huge smiles when I walked in their nursery yesterday, and I spent five hours today with Bug, Andrew, and their mom.  When I finally left, their mom shooed me out the door with a "Go home to your wife!" before grinning excitedly that she could say that.

I'm still recovering, so there are lots of tissues and coughs, but I'm feeling lots better.  Tomorrow I have the twins, then Katie and Sean in the evening; Saturday evening I have the twins; Sunday evening I may have Bug and Andrew.  Then comes another week.

I'm so glad I love my job.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Perils

So you know RSV, that virus that's really dangerous for preemies?  It's one of the causes of bronchiolitis, which is a pretty common viral infection in the first year of life.  Coughing, nose running like a faucet, difficulty breathing, wheezing, the works.

V found out today that Andrew was hospitalized with it while we were gone.  Poor kid, but by his mom's pictures, he was his usual happy self even hooked up to an IV.  He's fine and dandy now.

90% of cases occur in infants under a year old.
I'm pretty sure I was/am one of the 10%.
The symptoms sure describe how I felt for most of the honeymoon.  Thankfully Advil Cold & Sinus, Sudafed, and Nyquil kept me mostly alive, and I'm better for the most part - now, on day ten.

This is like back in June or July when V picked up hand, foot, and mouth disease.  I'm going to start researching common childhood illnesses and stocking the house with medicines against them.

Jiggity jig

To market to market to buy a fat pig
Home again home again jiggity jig

Okay, no fat pigs in my life, but I'm home - and by home, I mean: two crazy cats, one pile of cat throwup, three big wedding boxes, minimal sleep, two very excited twins, one load of toddler laundry, one timeout, fifty-two alphabet magnets, and four Sesame Street characters.

And I've only been home twelve hours.  It's good to be back - though I want more sleep.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Still alive

It feels strange, after so many months of updating every other day at a minimum, to take so much time off from here.  But it's my honeymoon, and there are pools and sunshine and roller coasters and V.  We're heading home in two days; I'm not ready to leave.  Of course it's a common feeling on the tail end of vacation, but life at home seems so hectic.  I'm hoping much of it was wedding planning, and it will be calmer now.  I need some calm.

I've loved having quiet time with V.  This is the first vacation we've taken where it's just the two of us and we've spent the entire time in one place.  We needed it.  We're reconnecting in ways that had been chipped away over the past few months of children and losing jobs and wedding planning and loan payments.  And nobody here looks twice at us.  Yes, when we checked in, the lady asked if my parents were here, but I put that down to age; nobody's batted at eye that we're two girls, honeymooning.

We've been congratulated, hugged, cheered.  I'm going to miss it.  Here, it seems everyone is just happy for new love, regardless of gender.  At home, only some new love is a happy occasion.  I don't want to have to figure that out again.

These are the rambles that happen late at night, when I'm due for more cough medicine.  I'm still alive.  And I still have another day and a half before I have to face the music.  And the dirty diapers.

Friday, March 11, 2011

I'm apparently a lesbian

I suppose that title shouldn't quite read like that, since I married a girl six days ago.  But that still is how it seems.  On a bus today, on our honeymoon, we chatted briefly with a middle-aged couple, both women, about the weather and things like that.  It occurred to me that I'm in "their category."

I've often said that I'm a straight girl with a girlfriend (or rather now wife).  I don't say that to denigrate lesbians or any other non-straight group of people in the least; I just seem to be, well, mainstream.  Not quite white-picket-fence, but close.  I always figured I'd grow up and marry a boy, and instead I fell in love with a girl.  It took awhile to get used to the idea, but she's most definitely more wonderful than a boy.

And so, according to society, I am now in a different category of people, be it the LGBT one, the marriage-destroying one, or the abnormal one.  I don't feel any different.  I feel pretty normal, actually: married, honeymooning, in love, the usual.  Also per usual, rambling, after a very long yet wonderful day on my feet.  I'm not sure if my thoughts are coherent, but it's nothing a nice warm bath can't fix.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Who do I sue...

...if I don't feel well on my honeymoon?  This is rather unfair.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Pre-honeymoon reflections

I really should be packing, but after packing, unpacking, and repacking this past weekend, I'm going to take a break before finishing up our honeymoon packing.  Besides, V has done most of it.  You know, my wonderful wifey.

Being married is incredible.  The day of, even after the ceremony, we didn't feel different at all.  Very happy, and excited, but not particularly different.  But now there is something.  Maybe it's just having made that public proclamation; maybe it's getting used to a different ring.  (In the previous post, mine's the sapphire ring and hers has the little diamonds.)  I'm a fan of this feeling.

The place we got married recognizes our marriage, obviously.  So do some of the surrounding locations.  The place we live does not, and neither does the place we're about to fly to for our honeymoon.  It's an interesting game of "now you're married, now you're not."  I was worried when we crossed the state line from an accepting state to a non-accepting one that I would feel sad, or that the weekend had been pointless.  I couldn't be further from the truth.

No state government can tell me I'm not married.  Sure, they can make me do my taxes by myself, and try to list me as single, but I'm married now.  In my eyes, in V's eyes, in our friends' eyes, in God's eyes, and in the eyes of some smart people in government.  This weekend was the farthest from pointless imaginable.  It was pointed, poignant, and perfect.

Hello world.  I'm married.

Hitched

We're safely back from getting married, after having the absolute best weekend of my life.  To be surrounded by all our close friends, to laugh a ton, to wear a beautiful dress, to watch my wife wear a beautiful dress...that is a wedding.  It was perfect.




We had a blast.  Now, for one day of work, then off to honeymoon in warmth and sunshine!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Send-off

V and I are leaving tomorrow morning!  When we get back home, we'll be, as the twins' dad put it, "all hitched up."  He was super generous today, helping me get the kids into bed early/on-time, so I could come home and work on packing and wedding prep (yep, it's still ongoing - a DIY wedding many hours away is a big project!).  He also loaned us a CD player for the ceremony.

Meanwhile, the twins' mom left a card and some chocolates for us, along with best wishes.  The card was perfect: it talks about how the best partner is one who is a friend.  To top all that off, Bug and Andrew's mom is loaning us a video camera so we can have a tape of the ceremony.

We have the best families ever, and they are all so excited for us.  It's awesome.
On that note, who knows how much I'll be posting over the weekend.  Brb, gettin' hitched!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Patrick's bows

The twins, as you all well know, are a boy and a girl (or what's commonly known as b/g twins, on those acronym-laden websites).  Lilly has longer hair than Patrick, and usually has a clip in it to keep it out of her face.  This inequality cannot fly, however, and so Patrick routinely says "Bow too!" whenever I pull one our for his sister's hair.

It's really adorable, and his parents do the same thing.  Today I took them both out in the stroller, her in a white shirt, green sweater, and purple flower clip, and him in a red shirt, white hoodie, and red flower clip.  I love the fact that their parents don't panic about him having "girlie tendencies" and don't blink when putting bows in his hair.  Sure, it doesn't show up in formal pictures or anything, but still.  I like that he knows he can wear them too.

And there's just something awesome about walking down the street with a girl and a boy in hairbows.