Mama Miller Parenting

Passionate parenting and homemaking.

Types of nap waking…

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Nap-time is a glorious hour in any parent’s day. A much earned break from constant noise and demands. And they are so cute while they’re sleeping.

Unfortunately, not all naps are created equally. How your child acts when they wake up can greatly vary from nap to nap. So, here is my handy guide to the types of nap waking you may experience…

1. The Cuddler
This is when your waking child becomes a snuggle bunny as they wake. Hugs and kisses abound. It is like a unicorn frolicked through to fart happiness on their dreams. This is probably the best waking mood.

2. The Grump
If your child wakes in a foul mood and closely resembles you when you haven’t had your morning coffee, you have a grump. Everything you say will be met with grunts and nothing will please them.

3. The Crier
This is like a grump doing a Niagara Falls impression. Every you do will lead to tears. A sibling looks at them? Tears. You give them the juice they asked for? Tears. The sky is blue? Tears. Everything will be tragic.

4. The Cyclone
Do they wake and immediately tear into a frenzy of motion that could rival Speedy Gonzales on uppers? Is there copious amounts of spinning, twirling, jumping, climbing, and/or running? Fits of laughter over jokes that only they get?

5. The Jekyll/Hyde or Bipolar Baby
This one hits all the above waking types within the span of five minutes. Crying and clinging. Kisses and hugs. Yelling and tantrums. Spinning and giggling. And repeat.

6. The Up All Night
Sometimes parenting comes with horrible, hard choices. No, I’m not talking about vaccinations, car seats, or schooling. The ultimate conundrum happens when they fight napping too long. Perhaps you had an event or were out. Maybe they are just wired. Either way it is past the time frame they can nap without being up too late after. Do you suffer through several more hours of craziness and tantrums until it is late enough for an early bedtime, or let them nap and risk being up all night? Don’t be fooled, it is a no-win situation.

7. The Power Napper
Another classic no-win situation. It can happen anywhere; in the car, out and about, or even at home. Your child napped, but only for about five minutes. This does not bode well for you. This gives them a temporary energy boost, but not enough rest to be mood stabilizing in the long run. Avoiding this is the reason parents will sometimes read a book in the car to keep from waking the child by moving them into the house. It is why you will bribe your four year old with candy not to touch or even look at your two year old while they sleep. It is why you will contemplate peeing on yourself rather than risking moving them off your lap to go to the restroom.

I’m not saying I have any sound advice on any of these, but it is fun to give them a name. Super helpful, right? πŸ˜›

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Happy Holidays!

A few fun nuggets from the past week…

E tripped (shocking right?) and got a big knot on her head. K overheard me telling Nana that she had a “goose egg”. When he woke up the next morning he told her to show Daddy her “goose brains”.

E has developed a massive love of rubbing Baby F’s head. She also wants to make him dance with her. He just gives her wide eyed stares of startled wonder.

K’s conversation with one of Nana’s coworkers today:
“Are you a good big brother?”

“Well, I don’t change diapers. Mommy and Daddy have to change those.”

“I bet you are still a good big brother. Do you show them the ropes?”

“Um, actually I don’t know how to jump rope very good yet.”

Anyway friends: Merry Christmas!

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Life with three kids

I’ve had a lot of people ask me how I’m doing lately.

How am I coping with three kids?

How am I feeling?

Well, here it is. My uncensored, sleep deprived version of the past four weeks.

● We found a waffle in the fish tank last night.

● I absolutely adore watching K and E interact with the baby. They love to hold him and kiss him.

● E also loves to sniff him and try to decide if he is poopy…

● I am no longer shy about nursing. Being poked in the boob repeatedly by a two year old saying, “Mommy booby milk” will do it. With K I had to be in a separate room and completely covered. With E I used the big tent cover and felt dangerous when I nursed in the mall play area. Now I use a thin muslin blanket to cover the goods, but not his head. No one has been flashed (outside of family) or made any rude comments.

● There are toys everywhere. The house has settled into a state of clean, but cluttered chaos.

● After hours of nursing and being used as a jungle gym by the big kids, I get ‘touched out’ and desperately crave personal space. Husband usually takes over soothing and listening for kids when he gets off work so I can have a few hours of quiet sleep.

● I thought I’d still be crazy sore, but I’m moving around pretty well. Sometimes I do too much and end up super sore though.

● I’m often torn between the need for privacy while I pee and knowing where the big kids are. Peeing alone means yelling, “Do not touch baby!”… Repeatedly.

● I’m sick to death of strangers commenting on how I have my hands full. It is like asking a tall person, “How’s the weather up there?” It is expected and I’m used to it, but it doesn’t make it any less irksome.

● I squirted myself in the face with milk once and K thought it was hilarious.

● I eat an unprecedented amount of cream of wheat. It is easy, warm, and can be spooned into my mouth with one free hand.

● My pits smell like pancakes all the time. Fenugreek supplements (for milk supply) give you a lovely maple smell.

● We call Baby F our little spider monkey because he is all limbs.

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Life in the Miller house.

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Baby F is here!

I know it has been a while dear friends. Baby F did, in fact, make a safe healthy debut. I’ve had a hard time blogging during this pregnancy.

In many ways this pregnancy was the easiest. I knew what to expect. I had no weight gain (lost 25+lbs and gained back about 15-20lbs). I never had high blood pressure…

It was also the hardest in many ways. Chasing two kids while pregnant is not easy. We also renovated a house and moved. I also made the choice (along with my OB) to go through this pregnancy without my anxiety medicine.

After E was born, postpartum depression and anxiety hit fairly hard and I had been on a low dose mild medication since she was five months old.

There are so many wrong assumptions about what depression looks like. I never laid in bed and cried all day. I didn’t look like a little cartoon with a storm cloud over my head. I just didn’t feel right. Little things would make the stress resonate in my shoulder blades. I was moody and didn’t cope with things as well. I would want to write or visit friends or do something, but a weirdness would wash over me and I’d hold back.

I was still me. I still got up every day and made breakfast for my kids. I could still joke and visit family. Please remember that if a friend or family member ever approaches you about depression. They may not look depressed or anxious. It can be a silent affliction that lurks in the shadows.

I made a plan with my doctor and pediatrician to start a new breastfeeding safe medication while in the hospital. I don’t regret waiting out my pregnancy, but I feel much more like myself now. Adjusting to three kids is much easier when you don’t feel like you are drowning in stress.

Baby F is almost 4 weeks old now. E and K are over the moon for their baby brother. They both like to hold him and both help grab things for mama. We are well. I’m hopefully back.. As much as a newborn will let me be.

Stay tuned for his birth story with more pictures!

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Always my mom

Nothing incredibly profound tonight. I don’t have enough neurons firing for that at the moment; I just had to share something.

I posted this on Facebook this morning:

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I had been up all night with Braxton Hicks and a sniffing toddler, but I had to get some things done today.

I got to church for a ladies’ function and my mom handed me this as I walk in the door:

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She’ll always be my mommy. β™₯

Oh, and I am happy to report K and I seemed to be back on the same page this morning. He and sister are spending the night with my in-laws. I think a truce and a day apart should help us reset.

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Spawn of Shelob

Fridays are family breakfast/brunch date day. Usually we do something cheap like donuts on non-payday Fridays and something that involves actual plates on payday Fridays.

Today was a fancy Friday. We decided to go to Cracker Barrel. Yep… Extra fancy.

We’d ask K a billion several times to get his shoes from the play room. He kept telling us there was a spider. I finally took a break from trying to chase down E with Husband and went to investigate.

K is not the bravest kid. It took me a while to convince him he could hold a doodle bug without contracting a fatal disease. So, I expected to see a tiny run-of-the-mill house spider. We live in rural area in Texas… Spiders happen.

This is what I found:

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Ok, so this is actually a picture of Aragog... But it is close!

Sweet nightmares! This thing was surely a descendant of Shelob, born from the depths of hell itself.

Me: HUSBAND!

Husband: What’s wron… OH SWEET JESUS!

Me: Do not squish that thing in my house! Take it out and kill it!

Husband was temporarily stunned.

Me: GET A CUUUUP! KILL IT! KILL IT WITH FIRE!

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Husband the Brave battling the Shelob

Husband sprung into action, trapped it in a cup, and took it outside to vanquish.

K: I told you there was a spider…

Yes you did kid. Yes you did.

About that time something flung itself at me from behind the futon.

Me: AHHH! SPIDER ATTACK!

K: It’s a grasshopper mom.

I have become far wimpier during pregnancy…

We did eventually make it to Cracker Barrel. It was 11 when we got there. Husband and I pretended it was still breakfast time and soothed our frazzled spider battling nerves with pancakes. The kids chose macaroni.

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Pictured: Why I wish E was clingier to daddy.

Mmm, slimy cheese covered toddler.

Happy Friday! I’ll have a Friday Favorites up later this evening, provided I’m not eaten by hell-spiders.

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The Cuteness Factor

Another short post. My kids are protesting sleep this week. They are up early, power nap (if they nap), and then fight sleep for hours.

I officially hate summer. It is bright for way too long… And hot… And sweaty… And it means I’m still pregnant. So very pregnant. Waddling pregnant. Afraid-to-stand-up-for-fear-of-peeing-myself pregnant.

Stores are evil, by the way. They already have out long sleeved things and Fall scented candles! Long sleeves! In August! In Texas! Why?!

I digress though.

My son used the eyelash flutter on me today. He asked me if he could spend the night with Nana and Poppy and then fluttered his eyelashes at me. It wasn’t an accident. He was purposely trying to be cute.

When did he learn that?

I did not fall for it…

In other cuteness related news, E had her first ever pedicure with Nana and I today. She sat in my lap and stuck her toes in the water with me. They even agreed to paint a squirmy not-yet 2 year old’s toes. K and Poppy did manly things together while all this girliness went down.

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Her little toes match my swollen pregnant toes.

Have a great night everyone! May you have cute kids, pretty toes, and not pee yourself (pregnant or otherwise).

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Friday Favorites: Nerdy Edition

So, it is no secret that my husband and I are nerds. We were both in band from sixth grade through college and bonded over our mutual love of geek culture. My 4 year old is in love with all things Star Wars and can quote the intro to Star Trek TNG. My little sister even brought back a Storm Trooper bow for E from Wizard World (similar to comic con).

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K the Ewok…

We pretty much like anything Marvel, Dr. Who, Star Wars, Star Trek, Firefly, Warehouse 13, Mario, Zelda, and Harry Potter. How can you go wrong with amazing story lines that embrace imagination?

In honor of Friday Favorites: Nerdy Edition, I wanted to share a few of my favorite geektastic businesses and sites…

  • Think Geek. You can find almost anything here. You need a Soft Kitty shirt? Done. Light up Star Trek bib with Enterprise spoon? Done. Dr. Who sonic screwdriver lamp? Done.
  • Houchin’s House of Wizarding Wares. I went to school with this awesome family! They sell hand carved wands, crocheted bows, “potion” necklaces, and other cute Pottereque goods. They even make crochet hook wands. How cool is that?! (Keri also is a local blogger for frugal family fun in the DFW area, recipes, and other frugal homemaking tips. Check her out at One Mama’s Daily Drama.)
  • MommySoup. We recently switched our toddler over to cloth diapers. What won my hubby over to this choice? The prints. Pampers don’t come in Dr. Who prints. This is a WAHM (Work at Home Mom) with some talent for diapering kids in style. Her covers would even be cute over those Pampers.
  • Shirt Diapers. Yes, more cloth cuteness. I love that this mama has an eye for cute geekiness and she upcycles! All her diapers are made from old t-shirts she finds. She’ll even discount your custom order if you send her in one of your own shirts! We sent in a thrift store Yoda shirt that K wore as a baby. E also wore it as a nightshirt, but it was getting stretched out. We sent it to her and it became the cutest diaper ever for Baby F.
  • Seams Geeky. One last bit of diaper cuteness… I haven’t had a chance to order one of these beauties yet, but I am in love with her amazing embroidery! They are gorgeous.

Those are my favorite geeky shops. Do you have any? What is your favorite nerdy indulgence?

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E modeling the Yoda diaper and her Storm Trooper bow.

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Firefly Diaper cover and bib from MommySoup!

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Pink Star Wars Kids diaper cover, also MommySoup.

Why have kids if you can’t put them in cute geeky bows, diapers, and clothes?

Don’t forget to stop by my facebook page and tell me about your favorite geeky show, movie, game, or book series! I will be continuing Friday Favorites on different topics each week.

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The Evolving Mom

I was sitting, watching my kids gleefully run off energy at the play area in our local mall. Earlier that morning we had reached the breaking point of cabin fever. I made the executive decision that getting everyone dressed and loaded in the car was a better option that watching K and E ping pong off all the walls of our house.

I sat and enjoyed the fact that the squishy floors and structures meant they could dive off everything in the enclosure without a trip to the ER. I then noticed a mom with her little boy. She struck up a conversation with me. E and her son are the same age. She held his hand as he climbed up the two steps to the top of the tiny slide. He landed at the bottom with a slight bump.

His mom quickly picked him up and exclaimed, “They really need to put something softer at the bottom!”

About that time E came shooting down the slide and skidded about 3 feet. She giggled, picked herself up, and ran off to explore the other things from which to hurl herself. The other mom looked on in horror and stopped talking to me.

I will not for a second claim that all first time moms are scared or this uppity- many many are not. However, I get the whole “wait until you have another” mantra by which moms of two or more swear.

I get it.

You just don’t fret the “padding” as much the second time around. You don’t have the time or energy. You no longer rush to sanitize everything that hits the ground. (She played in the toilet this morning- drinking out of a sippy cup that hit the freshly vacuumed floor can’t be that bad.)

It isn’t that moms with multiple children don’t care about their kids… They just choose their battles. When you have one, they become everything. You can really focus on all the tiny things. I did it with K too.

I don’t yet know how different three will be from two. I’ve been told that I will be outnumbered. I’ve been told that anything past two kiddos is more of the same. My older sister, a mom of four, said that some days she hits a point of not caring what her brood is up to, short of getting blood on the carpet or burning down the house.

Who knows. We are on an adventure. We will grow and evolve and see where this takes us.

I can hope that this adventure will eventually lead to more sleep, but I’m pretty sure that would be a pipe dream.

4 Comments »

Those Pesky Storks

I have a confession: I am a snarky sarcastic person. I come by it naturally. My family is full of sarcastic southern women. In Texas “bless your heart” is the southern lady way of calling you dumb. The poor men in our lives never stood a chance.

My dad is notoriously bad about forgetting to signal and after being teased one day by my mom and little sister about this, he decided to announce that he had actually used his turn signal. Without skipping a beat my sister replied, “Do you want a sticker?”

In an effort to not be a jerk and live up to my goal of choosing love, I try to reign in my remarks. They still jump into my head but I really do try to use my filter on what escapes my lips…

Pregnancy hormones are not helping my desire to be a nice person. Pregnancy hormones and the fact that my jeans are already too tight to button are contributing to a fast growing hole in the filter between my brain and mouth.

We’ve had several (well-meaning perfectly nice) people tell us we need to “figure out what causes that” in reference to our third pregnancy. I know they think they are being sweet or funny but my snarky pregnant brain comes up with three possible responses:

We have this pesky stork infestation. I think we need to spray.

You know, we’ve been married for five years but I’m still fuzzy on the details. Could you explain it to me?

I’m told, barring turkey basters, medical intervention, or immaculate conception, that it is usually sex. Sexy baby making sex.

So far none of those responses have made it past my filter but it is becoming very tempting!

In other Miller news:
E has enough hair for tiny pigtails now!

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And my kids have discovered the joys of playing dress-up.

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K got his Captain America outfit for Christmas and has worn it so much that it is getting runs and holes. E got several dresses for Christmas as well. K has decided that she is “Princess Thor”.

10 Comments »

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