Friday, September 30, 2011


The Neighborhood Watch Committee is issuing an Alert.

Please be on the lookout for Rachel Kargas/Alias Getrealmommy. It is believed that she is mentally unstable and possibly dangerous.

Rachel (photographed above) is five foot four, has an (unusually chic) short haircut and is covered in flea bites. She was last seen wearing a black tshirt stained with spit up and a pair of ill-fitting Old Navy maternity sweatpants.

She has been spotted wandering the area with her four month old baby strapped to her chest, pushing an empty red double stroller while screaming "Hurry Up! We're late" at her two disheveled sons trailing behind her. Based on her boys appearence there is concern that her sons are being emotionally abused and forced to wear miss-matching outfits.

While it is unlikely that Ms. Kargas is armed with anything more than one of her kitchen knives (which is too dull to cut string cheese), she is considered unstable and should be approached with caution.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Off the deep end

I'm on the edge. This has been a difficult week, one that has left me zapped of all energy, sitting on the sofa listless while the boys eat Micky Mouse chicken nuggets and frozen edamame. Only the best for my kids.

If things were different I would have posted something witty about the rained out 6th birthday party we threw for Zachary on Sunday. I would have had pictures. But I'm worn out, and the battery is dead on the camera, and I can't locate the charger, because my house is in total chaos and I am completely unorganized.

No nothing tragic has happened. It's just the stuff of life, and it has worn me down. I feel ready to throw in the towel, wave the white flag, but really what does that mean? There is no coast guard to rescue the sinking ship of Mommyland.

Zack turned six on Sunday. We had a party with twenty kids and parents. It was the only day in months that it rained, turning the park party impossible. We moved it home. The bounce house was three hours late. Hot dogs were made, cake was eaten, and the kids had a blast, but I was exhausted. The house was turned upside down, and I was up until 10pm cleaning up on a Sunday night.

Monday and Tuesday took an unexpected turn when we had to get Zachary's infected tooth pulled. Monday I had to go to two different dentist offices with three crabby kids. In and out of the car, sitting in the waiting room, trying to calm a frightened six year old's fears, appease a wild three year old while nursing a squirmy four month old. Tuesday we spent the entire morning at the dentist. Zachary had to be sedated for the procedure and his biggest concern was the fact that he had to skip breakfast. When we left the office at noon, he was in tears. "You mean we missed breakfast?" he wailed. Even a chocolate milkshake could not comfort him. Meanwhile, I was feeling pretty bummed out about the unexpected $450 price tag, and that is with dental insurance. Yay.

Today we officially evicted the fleas. Flea Busters arrived bright and early, turned our house upside down and left a yucky white powder all over the house. I am told we should see results... in six weeks. SIX WEEKS people. I already look like I have the chicken pox for Pete's sakes! I don't have six weeks. $500 later, we sit and wait for results.

And while all of this is going on, I am sick. I haven't slept for three nights, due to a sore throat and a fever. Sadly, Ju-Ju Bean is now running a low grade fever as well.

It just keeps getting better.

Pray for me folks. I just might go over the deep end.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A BIG Decision

It was a big day today. I quit my job. People don't know whether to congratulate or console me, and to be honest my feelings on the matter are fairly complicated.

I liked my job. A lot. I like working. I don't believe that I fit the classic stay-at-home-mom stereotype, the June Cleaver who loves making her own baby food, heads up the PTA and doesn't mind a day of hanging around the house with the kids. I get bored easily. I am a very social being and I want to be around other grown-ups.

Yet, baby number three has changed everything. After Zachary and Evan were born I felt more than ready to put on a pair of high-heels and head back to the office, breast pump slung over my shoulder. But having a third being to take care of seems to have made things exponentially more challenging. Perhaps it is also that Zack and Evan are getting older and their needs are shifting as well. There is homework, play dates, lunches to pack, meals to prepare, endless amounts of laundry and mess to clean up. Fleas to kill. Keeping our life together seems to be an enormous job, and I feel that adding on an outside career would simply crush us.

So today I called my boss, whom I adore and quit the best job I ever had. I have to hope it was a good decision. I have to pray that I will stay sane and learn to stick to a tight budget. I know that the time with my baby will be well spent, he is my last. I now can take my time with him, nurse him without worrying about pumping, be there for all of his firsts and hopefully form an even deeper bond with him. I am lucky for this opportunity.

None of the decisions are easy ones. Women face a big delimma these days and sometimes it seems like there is no way to win. Today however I am going to choose to celebrate and toast to this new chapter.


Sunday, September 18, 2011

Six Rocks. Happy (almost) Birthday Zachary

Six Reasons Why Six Rocks

1) You believe that someday you can be an Astronaut or a Major League Baseball player or BOTH.

2) You have no concept of calories. Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, ice cream sandwiches and french fries, BRING IT ON!

3) You can make a new best friend anywhere you go.

4)It is totally acceptable to wear ratty t-shirts and sweats to almost any occasion.

5) If you get in a fight with a bad-ass on the playground and kick him in the shins, all will be forgiven as long as you say sorry.

6) You believe that you are the center of the universe and your parents go right along with it.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Man vs. (very small) beasts

You plague me, you disgusting pests. You have infested my pets and my home, depositing itchy calling cards all over my body. Oh, how I itch. I have scratched each bite into a bloody scab, leaving me looking no less than diseased.

I have declared war, but you won round one. You survived your habitat being attacked with hot water, heavy vacuuming and pesticides. My brave four-legged soldiers endured toxic, humiliating baths, and yet you survived.

Do not think we are giving up. We will not surrender. Round two commenced today. More bathing, more pesticides, more vacuuming. We will wear you down. Your tiny bites cannot kill us, only drive me to insanity, making me more likely to get rid of your comfy homes forever. Yes, I will sacrifice my four legged friends for the sake of the greater good.

You must be banished and destroyed forever.

You haven't seen (or tasted) the last of me.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Lucky Stars

Here we are on September 11, 2011. Ten years. I know any post that I create today will be cliche, something that thousands and thousands of others have written about, and probably more eloquently. Yet it is hard to let this day pass without saying something, acknowledging the significance of the date on the calendar.

Today I give thanks. On the anniversary of the worst day, I want to make an outward statement of gratitude. I know that I complain quite a bit. I talk about the difficulties of parenthood and the everyday burdens of life often. But I am lucky.

On the day the towers fell, I was in my mid-twenties. I had no children. I shed tears for the babies that lost fathers and mothers in the senseless violence, however I did not truly comprehend it. Today I have a better understanding of what it might have been like. A belly full of new life, a young father who will never come home. A three year old trying to grasp that mommy has gone away forever. A kindergartner searching for reassurance as she is faced with the countless images of terrified adults. I pray that this will never be my reality, that I will remain lucky.

While contemplating the magnitude of this day, I was also reminded of the more personal, everyday tragedies that I have bared witness to over the past year. Just today I read about a fellow mommy blogger who's twelve year old son literally got ripped away from her own backyard in a flash flood. He drowned. He is gone forever. A pain I cannot begin to understand.

On a smaller scale I have watched friends struggle through divorce, miscarriages and life changing injuries. For them it has been an unbelievably difficult year. Life is hard and I have had it very easy. I am lucky, and now I give thanks. I am thankful for my sons and my husband, my parents and my sister, my nieces and nephews, in-laws and friends. I'll knock on wood, I'll spit three times, but in the end it's luck, shear luck.

Tonight I am thanking my lucky stars for all that I have, and I am thinking of those who have lost so very much.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Summer's gone.

Labor Day. The end of summer. It's always a little sad, that last day at the pool, that last family barbecue. Today, the passing of this season holds extra meaning. I spent the past year anticipating summer. Through the rainy winter months my stomach grew and grew, while I held tight to the promise of warmer times, when damp cold would give way to sunshine and literally new life.

Julian was born just after Memorial Day, in the wee hours of May 31, 2011. As I held my new baby that rainy spring morning, I knew that I had an entire summer ahead of me. A summer filled with long afternoon walks and star lit nights, rocking my newborn to slumber.

We did not waste the past three months, they were well spent. We visited with family, attended every festival and fair that we could, we boarded a plane and traveled to Denver, we made the most of our time. Best of all, more than ever I was able to focus, focus on taking everything in. I spent moments just looking into the eyes of my new son. Perhaps because I know he is my last baby, I have worked at being present in the moment and I have taken many mental photographs. His chubby cheeks, his gummy smile, the softness of his hair. Spectacular.

September has come. Fall is upon us. School has started and life pushes forward. It happened too fast. Today, I gave away the last of Julian's newborn clothing, he has outgrown them. I will never have a need for a size 1 diaper again, and this gives me pause. A chapter is closing. Forever. So many milestones. My high school graduation. My first day of college. The day David proposed. Our wedding. Our first home. My 30th birthday. That first positive pregnancy test....

And here we are. My third son is three months. I will have no more babies. The real milestones are now those of my children. My beautiful (sometimes lousy) boys. I cannot believe I am here, that this is my life. So much of the time I still feel as if I am the child. A little girl in need of encouragement. But no, no, I am the grown up, the mommy, raising the next generation. It all moves so fast, one season to the next.

Summer is gone. It is time to move on. Back to work. On to the next stage. Closing a chapter.


Thursday, September 1, 2011

An Update

I have become a very bad, or at least infrequent blogger. Truth be told I miss it, however I don't seem to have the time or energy for creative posts. By the time we get the boys to bed each night I can barely muster up a weak "Get back into bed!" let alone write more than a Facebook status update.

Life is busy, one task after another, an endless cycle of meals, cleaning, diaper changing, paperwork, shopping, nursing, nursing, nursing! It is not without joy, however it is exhausting and there are times that I just want to get off the ride. There are times when I want to be left alone without anyone needing or wanting something from me. Sometimes I get an hour of time like that before bed, and rather than blog, I usually end up sitting and staring blankly at reality TV. What can I say?

I did want to do a brief update, there has been much going on. Last weekend my dear friend Shannon visited from Colorado. We spent three days eating, drinking, consignment shopping and chatting. It left me feeling a mix of refreshed and well....bloated. It was an awesome weekend and I feel so lucky to have such an amazing friend!

On Monday we entered the world of Oakland Public Schools when Zack became an official kindergartner. Zachary was very excited for his first day of school, no tears were shed, and he came home that day with his first ever homework assignment. So far Zachary seems to be enjoying his new school and his classmates. I remain skeptical of the school, it seems highly unorganized and the communication has been spotty at best. I am guessing that this will be the first of many gripes that I have with our public schools, but unless something changes dramatically with our financial situation, we won't be sending the boys to private school, so we will have to make the best of it.

Ju-Ju Bean changes daily. He has been smiling and alert, but for the past few days he has been trying on his lungs for size. A lot of crying. A lot. In fact... I hear him now.