Saturday, November 29, 2008

Ping Pong Match

Happy-Sad. Ashamed-Proud. Grateful-Relieved. There are so many emotions going through my head right now that it is like a ping pong match. I have officially stopped breastfeeding Ryen and I am so mixed up about it. I don't know if it just hormones or what but I can't seem to choose whether to be ok with it or dwell on it. Here are my thoughts:

A part of me is happy to be done with breastfeeding, cause let me tell you... it is hard! It is time consuming, confusing, painful at times, and requires a big commitment. You would think it is so natural that a baby would be able to latch on and feed immediately without needing to be taught or trained. Not always the case with humans. Some women are cows and produce a ton of milk and have a baby that latches on right away with little or no effort. Breastfeeding is a breeze for these women! But a lot of women, like myself DON'T. If Ryen were my only baby perhaps I could have invested the time needed to train her and train my body for breastfeeding. But that wasn't possible for me. Even when I fed her every two hours like clock work it didn't seem to increase my milk supply. In fact it seemed to get worse. I was so sad to stop that I was trying to feed her all the time, pumping around the clock, and really putting a lot of pressure on myself to breastfeed for as long as I could. I am still sad to have stopped. But the time was right.

So why do we as women feel like failures or feel ashamed if we don't breastfeed or if we are not as successful at it as some other women? Feels almost like it is a test of your Womanhood or Mothering abilities. Even though we have no control over it and can only do our best with what we have. I have so much respect for anyone who tries breastfeeding at all whether for 1 day or 1 year or longer. So I am proud that I made it 8 weeks and would have loved to have made it longer. There was closeness, convenience, bonding, and a feeling of accomplishment that I got from breastfeeding that I am mourning right now. I have to keep telling myself that I don't really have control over it. It was not my fault that Ryen was not gaining enough weight and the doctors were concerned and pressuring me to supplement with formula. It is not my fault that I wasn't producing enough milk to satisfy her at feedings. I wish I was! And I don't have the luxury with a 2 year old of breastfeeding all day long or setting an alarm and waking up every 2 hours at night to breastfeed as I would not have anything to offer Ella during the day if I was that sleep deprived.

So I am trying to stay positive and remind myself that Ryen will be just fine. There are many babies that are formula fed and are thriving, wonderful, smart, happy, independent, well adjusted and healthy children. Ella is a PRIME example of this. I am trying to be grateful that I was able to breastfeed at all since I was robbed of that experience with Ella due to her start in the NICU. And the other part of me is relieved that I will not have to worry about her weight gain, or wonder how much food she is getting or have to be a slave to my breast or my pump anymore.

So then why is giving it up almost as painful as trying so hard to be successful at it was...

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving Everybody! I wanted to quickly share some photos of today before going to bed for the night (and so I can have something to do while I make sure Ryen is really back to sleep before I shut my eyes!)

I also want to share what I am thankful for this year. So here goes. I am so thankful for my beautiful family. My husband and my two little girls and my two beagles. I am so thankful that we have a mostly ;-) happy home and we all have our health. I am thankful for my parents and siblings (and their health) and am thankful that my Grandfather (Papa) is still with us as he is getting very old and every year with him is a blessing. I am thankful for all my wonderful friends (some new some old). I am thankful for the neighborhood I was lucky enough to have moved into it where I met wonderful people to socialize and raise my children with!

I am sure I can come up with a dozen or so more but those are the basics I am sure we all share and sometimes it just feels good to put them out there! Enjoy the Photos and Happy Thanksgiving. I hope you all have as many things to be thankful for.

PS: It actually rained HAIL here tonight! Hail the size of chic peas! I couldn't believe it so I took these photos below! It was coming down so hard it felt like someone was pouring marbles on my house! Cool huh??

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

My Other Love... OH and I have to mention TWILIGHT!

I have another love in my life... reading! Books were not a memorable part of my childhood that I can recall and later when we were assigned books to read in school, they were so dreadfully boring that it turned me off to reading all together. I hated Shakespeare or books like Jane Eyre or To Kill A Mockingbird. I know these are supposed to be classics but they can be intimidating books for young readers and they are not entertaining or engaging in my opinion. (Any book you have to read with a dictionary to look up words that haven't been used in 200 years, just are not for me.)

One day in high school I picked up a novel and read the description on the back. It sounded like such a cool story! That book was "The Bad Place" by Dean Koontz. It was Thriller/Sc-Fi/Horror Fiction book that kept me on the edge of my seat, gave me nightmares and had me reading under my covers when my Mom thought I was sleeping! I was hooked ever since.

In the last 14 mos I have read 40 Books. I am reading 4 simultaneously right now (my husband can NOT understand how I can do that). My friends don't understand how I find time with a newborn and a busy toddler to read over 3 books a month. But when you love reading and find it relaxing and engaging, like I do, you make time. My good friend Sara shares a passion for reading also! She introduced me to a fantastic website called SHELFARI! Where I can read and write reviews, find new books to read, set up a reading list and a virtual bookshelf too. It is awesome and I love it!

Sara also introduced to me an AMAZING series of books known as "The Twilight Series". Even if you are not a reader I am sure you have heard about these books. If you haven't just walk into any Barnes and Noble or Borders and you will be inundated with tables and signs advertising this series that has a cult like following of teeny bopper girls and women! Not in a long time have I come across a series that I couldnt wait for the next one and couldnt put it down. I begged my Mom to read the first book and she is now on the fourth. Now my sister Lisa just finished the first book and cant wait to read more! So of course being such a HUGE fan of this series I have been excited for months for the Twilight movie which racked up $70 mil in its opening weekend and caused lines at theaters around the Country. I finally got my chance last night. Honestly... it was painful to sit through. I have not seen a movie this bad in a long time. The movie honestly probably needed to be 3 hours long to do the story justice and develop the incredible characters! But the acting was horrible, the casting was horrible, the screen adaption from the book failed miserably. About 30-45 minutes in I told the girl next to me that if I hadn't read the book I would have walked out already. No surprise a few moments later two women did walk out... straight into the parking lot. I covered my eyes and shook my head through most of it. But it was like a train wreck I couldn't take my eyes off of. And the worst part of all...I love the books that much that I can't wait for the sequel!!!! Masochistic- I know, but I can't help it!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Ryen ROLLED Over!

I forgot to mention something HUGE this week! Ryen rolled over! Not once but TWICE! After the first one I grabbed the camera and got it on video! Here it is below. Sorry it is so dark! She rolled over at exactly 7 weeks!!! Yeah Ryen!!!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Busy Week for Us!

So we have been trying to stay busy lately. Ella started an Art Class through the city of Chandler. Class one was learning about texture. Ella wasn't really into it actually. She wanted to leave and play on the stairs outside the classroom so hopefully it gets better and more stimulating for her. Thanks to inspiration from my friend Tanya (see Tanya's blog under my friends list)I have really started to make an effort to do creative things with Ella. Recently we made jellyfish and a fishbowl. Here are some photos:

Jelly Fish:


Also this week Ella and I had our friends over for a pre-Thanksgiving Pie Tasting. We all made a pie and for lunch we sampled each others pies. It was a lot of fun and the kids got to taste some too. The White Chocolate Strawberry and the Peanut Butter Pie seemed to be the most popular but I think because they were unique and not your normal Thanksgiving pie. Yummy!!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Boycotting Thanksgiving?

Ok, so I have never been a fan of Thanksgiving! I enjoyed going to my Aunt & Uncle's house ever year as a kid & stuffing my face with my Aunt Janice's AMAZING meatballs. But about 10 years ago Thanksgiving started to lose its appeal for me. I know it is because I am a HUGE fan of Christmas & I wish people could start celebrating on Nov 1st instead of feeling forced to wait till the day after Thanksgiving. I always saw Thanksgiving as an obstacle to my being allowed to celebrate Christmas. My husband LOVES Christmas as much as I do. No surprise that Ella is OBSESSED with Christmas & Santa. She cant walk by a Christmas decoration or tree without yelling "Yeah- CHRISTMAS!!" She LOVES Santa too! See the video at the bottom of this post of her with dancing Santa!

So The Carillis are boycotting Thanksgiving this year! Well sort of! We are going to our friend Yolanda's house to have turkey dinner, (thanks for the invite!) but we decided not to be pressured to wait till after Thanksgiving to show our Christmas spirit! So we put our Christmas decorations up inside the house already- including our tree (see photo above) & we will be putting up our outside decorations this weekend!

We also have a radio station out here 99.9 KEZ that started playing Christmas Carols on 11/8 for the REST of the year! So we have had that station on at all times in the house and car and Ella is already learning Christmas Carols and singing along! Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

10 in 10 Update

Well one fabulous year almost done and another about to start. Got me thinking what did I accomplish this year? Some of you will remember last year I issued a challenge to all my friends and family to join in me in what I call "10 in 10"! Here is how it worked- I asked you to come up with 10 things you want to do before you die. Then for the next 10 years try to cross one of those things off your list each year. No worries if you don't do one every year. You just have to try. I know at least Crissy and Deanna said they would join the challenge (and I am pretty sure Crissy got to cross another Marathon off her list!). Anyhow below was my list that I posted last year.

1. Have another Baby (completed Oct 2008)
2. Renew my Wedding Vows
3. Run a Half Marathon
4. Sky Dive
5. Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride
6. Spend a weekend in New York City
7. Go to Europe
8. Get really fit
9. Take some cooking classes
10. Take my children to Disney

Yeah! I was able to complete one! So looks like I need to add another one to my list to replace #1. See my revised list at the end of this post. Now looking at this list I see two things that I am looking to cross off this list in 2009 (renew marriage vows for 5 year anniverary, get really fit) Lets see if I can really attack this list in the next couple years so I can have lot of fun adding new things to it!

1. Renew my Wedding Vows
2. Run a Half Marathon
3. Sky Dive
4. Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride
5. Spend a weekend in New York City
6. Go to Europe
7. Get really fit
8. Take some cooking classes
9. Take my children to Disney
10. Go to Atlantis in the Bahamas

Date Night at Jason Mraz Concert

Ok so hubby and I had date night last night and WHAT A BLAST! We went to The Dodge Theater to see JASON MRAZ (I LOVE HIM!!!!!!!). He puts on an awesome live show. You probably know him as the singer of Remedy which was a hit off his first album (Waiting For My Rocket To Come) back in 2002 or so. I am OBSESSED with his Mr. A-Z album that he came out with in 2005/2006 and now his latest album (We Sing We Dance We Steal Things) has produced one of the biggest hits of the Summer... "I'm Yours!"

I have played this song so many times in the car that when it came on about a month ago Ella yelled out "Mommy's Favorite Song!" Yes my not even two year old knew it was my favorite song with out my telling her! *Weird side note that this song came on during my C-Section with Ryen just as she was being born! The nurse turned it up for me because Jimmy told her it was my favorite song. Moments later my surgeon asked the operating room staff "who is singing?". She thought it was one of the nurses or doctors singing behind their mask and someone answered her and said "the patient is singing!" They all started laughing and said well that's good news! I think it was a first for them! Check out the song (and video) to "I'm Yours" here

Not to mention the girl that opened for him was AWESOME! She reminded me of Bjourk but she was fresh of the boat from Ireland with an ADORABLE soft spoken voice and accent. Her nature was humble and appreciative and she got so into her music she looked like she was in a trance and I LOVE when artists get that into their music. Almost like she forgot we were in the room with her. To learn more about Lisa Hannigan or hear her music (highly recommended) click here

Monday, November 17, 2008

Turkey Crafting?

Ok so I came across this craft on a website and thought I would try it with Ella. I invited my friend Amanda and her 18 month old Paxton to join us. Well needless to say the craft was adorable as you can see in the photo below. Only problem was Amanda and I did all the work.

Paxton just wanted to chase my dogs all over the house and Ella was trying to stick googly eyes in her mouth and kept begging to get down from the table so she could chase Paxton, who was chasing the dogs. Amanda and I trucked on like troopers however and completed the craft, wondering why the heck we tried to have them do a craft that was more for a 5 year old.

But live and learn. Either way the Turkeys came out good and the kids at least had fun holding them (and trying to ruin them!)

To learn how to make them click here. Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

I'm BACK!!!

Well looking at this REVITALIZED blog of mine, I can’t believe it has been almost a year since I have posted something. I stopped blogging because I was worried I would have nothing to say... can you believe that? An East Coaster who can't find something to say? Normally I don't shut up! LOL

Anyhow I guess I felt pressured to write about something other than my kids. But now I realize why shouldn't I blog about my kids and all the joys and TEARS that come with raising these little angels! So although I do send out a ridiculous amount of photos to my friends and family on both coasts through our family website, I wanted a place where I could share my trials and tribulations, thoughts and tales of my days striving to be SUPER-WIFE and SUPER-MOM.

Hope you enjoy the posts! Subscribe to my blog to receive notification of new posts!