April 30: A Mama Bear alone with her cubs


Monday. I decided to work from home 1/2 day today (instead of Wednesday) because I THOUGHT the mortgage would be ready for me to sign and then put $$$ in escrow for closing. I was wrong…

Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • My first encounter with a child was with Big Bro. I was in the shower and he was downstairs and already dressed for the day. He wanted to go pee-pee and was upset that I was in the bathroom. I suggested that I turn the other way while I was in the shower and not look so he could have some privacy. He told me to promise not to look. I did, laughing.
  • Big Bro literally had all of his things ready to go at 7:30. Back packed, shoes found and ready, helmet set to go. It was Monday and he was the leader for the Motley Crew bike ride to school… AND he had his NEW bike so he was really looking forward to getting started today. So cute.
  • Red put on a necklace and said it looked like mine. She was so cute and I told her that she was my “twin”. Her birthday is coming up and I keep calling her my sweet little birthday princess. She really looked like a princess today with her shiny necklace.
  • I held Twin Husky as I made my coffee. We talked together about the steps of making the coffee and where the grinds go and the water goes. He knows exactly where everything goes and what happens next. We then went into the laundry room to check out the washing machine.
  • Twin Crazy saw the attention received by her brother and then asked for me to pick her up. I can’t resist. She looks at me with those big round eyes and then sings “mommy, mommy, mommy….” and my heart melts.
  • We got ready really quickly today for some reason. While we were finishing gathering our things, Red, Twin Crazy, Twin Husky played with a puzzle. Its sweet how they all communicate now… sometimes for the good, sometimes for the worse. Their laughter with each other is growing more intense by the day… as is their fights with one another. It’s now going in all directions…. between the older ones, between the littler ones, and across all of the ages. Siblings.
  • I took the twins in the stroller and participated in Big Bro’s leading debut of the Motley Crew bicycle gang. The Twins looked at the sprinkler system as we were waiting for everyone. I told them how it works.
  • I overheard one of his friends telling his mom that he wanted a bike just like Big Bro’s. It was “so cool”. I can’t believe I’m hearing this already. I didn’t think I would hear this peer pressure so soon. They are in Kindergarten for goodness sakes!
  • I strolled the Twins to daycare. They were OK with going there and seemed happy as I left.
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    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I made it back in time to rearrange some meetings and let work know that I was working from home today. They all know of my house purchase and process of the mortgage…
  • I had a debrief meeting on the candidates we interviewed. I believe we are going to move forward with one, and I fully support that decision. She was a rock-star candidate.
  • I had a conversation with a Director about two forums we are trying to launch; we determined go-forward plan for both.
  • I followed up for the status of our client project. I’m starting to get worried.
  • I followed up with some work we need to circle back for one of the forums. I need to organize the info so I can thoughtfully articulate it back to our clients.
  • The Rest of the Day:

  • I did spend time trying to figure out the status of my mortgage and signing of loan docs. It seems like we are delayed again. I kept waiting for the green light as the deadline for the bank wire approached and then passed. I went to the bank to get a certified check in case the green light came through in the afternoon. I started to drive to the title company. Once I got there the green light still was not in, nor was it coming today. So I drove home, just in enough time to pick up Big Bro.
  • While picking up Big Bro I spoke with the agent and the Seller. They realize this is not my fault and are working with me and being unbelievably patient. I lost the connection but got it back while I was picking up the Twins. I reiterated my appreciation to the seller for his patience and indicated that women are strong and NEVER get in between a mama bear and her cubs!!!!! I see this house as an opportunity for better things for my family. I’m doing this for my children and want to see this happen for them.
  • We got to Red’s and then Big Bro rode his bike home.
  • We had a great dinner, and then had some dessert… leftover cupcakes from Red’s school. All kids were following me around like “dawn of the dead”…. I cut up the cupcakes, dished out the pieces in paper plates, and asked the kids to sit at the table. THEY RAN. I distributed the dessert AND THE PLACE WAS SILENT as they were busy gobbling up their dessert. I cleaned up as they enjoyed their sugar.
  • Afterwards, there was a lot of running around upstairs. I finished cleaning up and made it upstairs and told the kids to calm their bodies down… threatening loss of bike privileges if they do not listen. They eventually calmed down, I had Twins ready in their room for books, and invited Big Bro and Red to join us. They were wonderful. I had all kids around me and quiet. And Big Bro and Red were excited about sharing in the routine with Twin Crazy and Twin Husky. Big Bro even read a book to them. I am so proud on so many levels.
  • Twins did their kissing routine, as did I. “I….. love….. you…… sweet dreams….” Blow kisses.
  • Big Bro read a book to me, and then I did the same for him and Red. I am stunned at the fact that he is now reading. I just can’t believe it. It seemed to happen so quickly. He’s only in Kindergarten!!!! I don’t remember doing this in Kindergarten. Are we pushing our kids to hard to fast??? I wonder… But he is like a sponge and he is so quick and logical and questioning and a person learning about who he is and HE LOVES BOOKS!!! 🙂
  • I am typing now in the hallway since Red was scared and needy. Big Bro passed out asleep in about 2 minutes and I hear his deep breathing now.
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    Tonight went well. I was on my own and it went fine. I am a bit worn out from the shear emotional exhaustion that comes from buying a house. And also the various aspects of the divorce. I am not too concerned about work right now but I should be. Our client final deliverable is next week and my head is NOWHERE near that project right now. That needs to be fixed tomorrow. I also need some closure on my mortgage. I need that green light. That mortgage approval is coming between my cubs and their new home and I don’t like the feeling of being in limbo.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

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    Staying Sane: Ride like the wind


    This weekend was a big weekend for Big Bro and Red. They are turning 6 and 4 soon, and co-parent decided to go out this weekend and get them suited up for their birthday presents…. new bicycles! So we grabbed the last bike that was big enough for Big Bro – a stretch actually – with gears and front/back handle breaks and all. We also suited up little Red in a fancy pink REAL bike with training wheels – and tassels to boot.

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    Because of these purchases, we were hanging out quite a bit in the cul-de-sac courtyard behind our house this weekend. It is safer there and there are two houses of young kids. At first I was just camping out with the rest watching the kites, balls, bicycles, scooters, and running of the kids. And then Big Bro asked about his gears. And I started to teach him about them. But he had some problems turning the gears. So I got on his bike to learn how to do it myself. I spun around the courtyard and felt the wind in my face and then realized I needed to focus on learning the gears or else Big Bro would be disappointed. So I got that down, but then continued to ride. Around the cul-de-sac again and going faster and riding riskier and pedaling faster. My heart beating and hearing the wind now.

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    This has been the most exercise I’ve gotten in too long of a time.

    So I had to give the bike up. But then thought to myself – I’m going to grab MY bike — funny though. It is a mountain bike. And I have not rode on it in literally 7 or 8 years. So when I went to check it out, both tires were flat beyond repair and the cobwebs likely choked up the chains. So I grabbed co-parent’s bike.

    I came blasting around the bend into the courtyard at warp speed (or at least I felt that way). My leg muscles felt good to be awake. My heart was pounding, my hair was shoved into my helmet but still flying around, the sun was on my skin and I was having FUN. I grabbed Big Bro and we took two loops around our neighborhood. I was talking to him as we went about the gears and the uphills and the downhills; he took to it so quickly and I had so much fun riding around with him.

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    So now I have another thing to add to my “to-do” list: Get my own bike tuned up and fixed.

    The exercise felt good. Being outside in the fresh air felt good. The sun felt good. Being with my son and the kids felt good. But the speed and the freedom and yes the tiny bit of recklessness was AMAZING. I’m looking forward to more of it and maybe shedding some pounds.

    What do you Mamas do for exercise? What activities do you find liberating?

    Have a great week to all –
    – Mama K

    April 27: Catching Ladybugs


    Good people are out there. Even in the business world. I found that out today. And am thankful for it.

    I had a crazy day today. I normally am at home with the kids but today everyone went to school/daycare since I had a meeting with a child custody mediator as well as a potential signing for the house.

    Highlights of the Morning:

  • This morning was good. I remember the kids listening well and getting dressed without too many problems.
  • Twin Husky, Twin Crazy, and Red were looking outside at some doves in our backyard. I should have taken that as a sign that today would be good one.
  • Red went with co-parent to daycare and she was happy to do so.
  • Big Bro scootered with the Motley Crew and I strolled with the Twins. I was actually surprised because at first I was packing the Twins in the van but he said that he wanted them to come along and for me to walk with him. Along the way, he held to the back of the pack and said he wanted to scoot along side of me. Towards the end he blasted past and beat me there at school.
  • I strolled the Twins and felt bad when Twin Husky said “No Margaritas”. When I strolled toward her house instead of taking our route home, he started to complain and whine a bit. I felt so bad. They are fine when they get there, but I know they would rather be with me. It hurts now to drop them off. I think we could do better by them.
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    Highlights of the Day:

  • The loan documents were still not ready. I was supposed to have signed these documents on Wednesday and closed by today. So technically I was close to breaking contract. The sellers were pressuring me to fund my portion of the deal but my loan broker was advising me under no circumstances do this since the docs were not ready. The sellers were considering putting the house back in “active” status and having an open house on Sunday…..
  • I spent some time responding to some legal stuff but didn’t have my heart in it…
  • I checked on work emails but there was nothing urgent that needed attention…
  • We went to child custody mediation and discussed the summer parenting schedule now that we know we have two locations and where they are. I feel good not particularly about the schedule but more about the progress. We have a plan. And it works with my move and my work schedule. This summer will be hard for the kids but I will do my best to be there for them.
  • After the meeting I learned about the reason for the hold up with the loan – nothing to do with me or my end – I’ve done everything I could do. But the underwriter needed another day to get the docs out. There was uncertainty as to what the sellers were going to do since our contract was expiring at 5 PM. I was talking with the agent and coordinator as I was driving back home at 4:30….
  • The Rest of the Day:

  • I went to pick up Red and co-parent went to pick up Big Bro and the Twins.
  • While I was picking up Red I received a phone call from the agent… the sellers and the agent now having all the information about the hold up in the loan decided to grant me an extension under the SAME terms of the prior contract!!! No changes in price, no rescinding of concessions, NO per diem charges for extra days of financing on their end! I couldn’t believe it. At the end of the day, they understood that the delay was NOT because of me, and that I was doing what I needed to in order to protect my family. I couldn’t believe it. I mean, these guys are business guys and they did not have to soften their hearts to a divorce of four small kids. But they did. And I am thankful for it. And I was on a speakerphone with them and thanked them and expressed my genuine gratitude for their decision and their patience. I reiterated my interest in their house and told them they made me a very happy woman today.
  • I ran around printing and signing the contract Addendum and went to some neighbors houses until I found someone with a scanner so I could email everything. The sellers were waiting.
  • Twin Crazy went potty and it was poop so she got two chocolate chips and everyone else got one chocolate chip. We all cheered for her and continued to cheer for her during dinner.
  • I told co-parent about the situation and my win. We had wine with pizza tonight.
  • Afterwards, I asked Big Bro if he wanted to go hunting for ladybugs. Me and him. And then I asked if he wanted someone else to come. He said Red. Then co-parent rallied so we all went out together. We had a great time hunting for ladybugs. I think we got about 18 not including the casualties (Twin Husky crushed some, and there were one or two that got smashed by the container lid). The kids had a great time and on the walk home a small part of me ached thinking that this might likely be one of the last times we do something happily as a family of six. I walked back as the sun was setting with my kids running ahead of me and cried a bit not out of sadness but out of thankfulness. Looking up at the sky thinking that there is someone up there looking out for me. That I am meant to be in that house with the kids. That I have worked for it all on my own and can make this happen for them.
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    So it was quite a day. I felt like I had my dukes up for most of it but these kids are worth fighting for. I feel like I am closer to reclaiming my life back and closer to building a home for my family. And yes, we are closer to causing the children a lot of pain and that kills me inside. But I am closer to providing a home for them – and yes, there is a part of me that is excited about going through the journey with them this summer even though it will be a huge challenge for all of us.

    Great weekend to all –
    – Mama K

    April 26: Lotion heads


    Tired. Throbbing headache. Big Bro is throwing a fit upstairs right now with co-parent. I’m downstairs in my room, like an outsider.

    Highlights of the Morning:

  • I woke up to Red coming into my room at around 6:30. She wanted to talk to me and play with my red beads.
  • All kids got dressed, fed, vitamins.
  • I strolled with the Twins as Big Bro scootered with the Motley Crew. The Twins looked ridiculous with the hair all over the place from the hand-soap incident the night before. Their hair was sticking up all over the place.
  • I strolled back with the Twins and we came back to a warm house.
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    Highlights of the Day:

  • We played with puzzles, ate snacks, cuddled on the couch, read books. Twin Husky had fun with the spray bottle.
  • There was lots of fighting and arguing and even hitting today between the Twins. I think they are getting bored with each other. It would be nice to have them interact more with other kids besides themselves and the older siblings. They were like an old married couple with each other today.
  • Throughout the day I answered emails where I had to and even had a quick conference call.
  • I made lunch and then we went for a drive. I asked them to nap in the car and it was so cute how hard they tried to close their eyes and go to sleep. It eventually worked and soon both were snoozing.
  • I had a meeting with my realtor to sign some docs; Twins were sort of behaved but not so much. Twin Husky dumped an entire container of Cheerios all over the floor. Twin Crazy had a pee-pee accident all over the floor. Twin Husky’s diaper came loose and when he let he pee-pee loose, it went all over his pants. Basically an embarrassing mess.
  • We got back and tried to rest a bit in my bed. It was cute but lasted only 10 minutes.
  • We picked up Red, then picked up Big Bro. Big Bro scootered all the way home.
  • As I made dinner the kids got into some hand lotion and wound up greasing themselves up all over the place. Thankfully I got to them before there was any lotion in anyone’s eyes.
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    Dinner and Bedtime:

  • Kids ate well except for Red. She ate nothing. I offered her milk but she refused. So she will be hungry tomorrow.
  • I cleaned up while co-parent gave Twins a bath.
  • Twins went to bed very easily.
  • Red and Big Bro were having their troubles; Big Bro came down to me looking for a shirt to wear for bed. I dried his eyes, handed him a pile of clean clothes, and told him that things would be alright. He’s upstairs now and it is finally quiet.
  • I’m really tired. I have a lot on my mind and feel drained. I don’t think I really had time to decompress from last week. Yesterday was so great for some reason…. today was good with the Twins but I honestly had no good quality time with either Big Bro or Red. I feel like I hardly saw them today. I need to make it up to them over the weekend.

    Looking forward to going to bed.
    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    Recipe: Honey Mustard Grilled Chicken


    I recently found this recipe on All Recipes.com and think that it could work for a working mother. It calls for grilling — I’m big on grilling indoors, with a grill pan ontop of the stove-top. But now that it’s Spring you can try it outdoors too!!! Enjoy!

    Makes 4 servings

    Ingredients
    • 1/3 cup Dijon mustard
    • 1/4 cup honey
    • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
    • 1 teaspoon steak sauce
    • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

    Directions

    1. Preheat the grill for medium heat.
    2. In a shallow bowl, mix the mustard, honey, mayonnaise, and steak sauce. Set aside a small amount of the honey mustard sauce for basting, and dip the chicken into the remaining sauce to coat.
    3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill chicken over indirect heat for 18 to 20 minutes, turning occasionally, or until juices run clear. Baste occasionally with the reserved sauce during the last 10 minutes. Watch carefully to prevent burning!

    Prep time: 10 minutes

    Cook time: 20 minutes

    Nutritional Information open nutritional information

    Amount Per Serving Calories: 266 | Total Fat: 8.3g | Cholesterol: 70mgPowered by ESHA Nutrient Database

    source: AllRecipes.com

    http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Honey-Mustard-Grilled-Chicken/Detail.aspx?ms=1&prop25=82203295&prop26=DailyDish&prop27=2012-04-23&prop28=DailyRecipe&prop29=FullRecipeLink&me=1

    April 25: Shopping, working, and playing together


    I’m jotting this down at the end of the day – I am feeling tired but VERY happy. There were lots of funny things happening today with the kids which looking back make me laugh…

    Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • I went upstairs and folks were up; Twin Crazy on the potty; I carried down lots of clothes, backpacks, and gear for everyone.
  • The ladybugs are still living
  • Twin Crazy was dressed and excited about the shirt she was wearing since it had a bird on it. She was having fun rolling around with a fuzzy giraffe pillow.
  • Twin Husky was busy reading and counting circles when I gave him a diaper change this morning. I told him how great it was that he is counting and how he is using his brain. I got him dressed in clothes since we were going to take a stroller ride today.
  • Red was stuffing her backpack silly. I mean it was totally packed and she needed help zipping everything up.
  • Red and Big Bro needed help with socks and shoes. It’s their little routine with me.
  • Big Bro was ready; as were Twins. They jumped into the stroller and Big Bro was set on his scooter. Red was fine going in with co-parent.
  • I strolled the Twins while Big Bro scootered with the Motley Crew. It was a nice walk. It felt good to be back in this routine. I’m still decompressing from last week. I talked with my neighbor about how the twins are showing their personalities and needs/desires much more forcefully now. How Twin Husky got upset when I took out “Other Tiger” from behind the stroller since he wanted it back there to go “night night”. Opinions. Tantrums. They are two. And NOW I know I have four children….
  • Big Bro drop off was fine.
  • As I started to take twins to their daycare, they realized where we were going and Twin Husky threw a tantrum. He didn’t want to go there. He wanted to go home. How sweet. It broke my heart though. He was better by the time we got there. I realized that I lost “Other Tiger” along the way and told him I would try to find him.
  • I started to RUN back home since I had 15 minutes to make it back before a conference call. I backtracked my way through the elementary school but no “Other Tiger”. I passed by my neighbor with her little girl playing on the swingset [so jealous of that woman…]. I continued to run. And then I saw “Other Tiger”!!!! I ran home just in time….
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    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I had a conference call with two directors to talk about our strategy with regards to legal representation at our forums. We talked cost and the need to negotiate down and also look for other firms. It is my role to make these forums more profitable so I pushed hard for finding other options.
  • I interviewed (via phone) a potential hire. I did not like him as much as the woman I met yesterday. He just fell flat. I know phone interviews are more difficult but I think he could have shown more initiative in describing why he wants a career change to consulting and why our firm specifically. These questions are so obvious and its amazing to me that candidates do not “nail” those obvious questions.
  • I did some follow up with one of the forums.
  • I did some planning for a forum we are trying to launch.
  • It was my 1/2 day and I wanted to take full advantage of it since last week was such a struggle. I picked up Red and then we picked up Big Bro. We sat down and talked about the plan for the rest of the day. I needed to go food shopping for some breakfast items for the kids. So I asked them if we should bring Twin Crazy and Twin Husky. They both suggested “No” so we went just the three of us which was fun.

    Highlights of Shopping:

  • We talked about our “list” on the way there to keep everyone in line once we got there.
  • Big Bro and Red helped with picking out fruit. Big Bro wanted to do the bags. He was hysterical. I caught him shopping for organic apples when I wasn’t looking. Too funny.
  • We agreed to buy some breakfast fruit bars. He went shopping for them while I went shopping with Red for cereal. He came back with choices of bars drizzled in chocolate. I laughed and vetoed his selection. He went back without a fuss and picked out two boxes of VERY appropriate cereal bars. One box of strawberry, one box of blueberry. He also came back with a box of organic gummy fruit chew snacks and I gave in since it was a sort of healthy snack.
  • Red picked out salami and she said she likes it so I bought a package. This liking of hers is completely new to me. We’ll see if she really eats any of it….
  • We needed frozen vegetables and passed all this crap along the way… Big Bro was drooling saying we needed all this stuff but I said it wasn’t on the list. He laughed. We got to the vegetable section and he was sooooooooooooooooooooo excited about the crinkle-cut carrots. Go figure.
  • We were waiting in line and the kids as jokes kept putting candy and crap into the cart. I jokingly said “THAT’S NOT ON THE LIST” and then asked loudly “where is the place where you return kids? I need my money back” and we were all laughing. Red pointed to a magazine with Rob Lowe on it and she said “we need that” and I said [probably too loudly] “Yes we DO need that… I need some of that.”…… at least I laughed.
  • After food shopping we went to the drug-store to pick up some meds and the kids were just magnetized to blow up balls and it is crazy how the kids just automatically find the toys and the crap in the store so quickly. Again, they knew “the list” and they knew that balls, sponge-bob toys, princess flashlights, and other crap from China were not on the list. They were laughing and it was too funny. They were even trying to get me to get eyeglasses as a joke. Too funny.
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    Dinner and Bedtime:
    Co-parent came home later so I had the bulk of time with the kids alone. I loved it.

  • Big Bro, Red and I picked up Twin Crazy and Twin Husky.
  • Got home and had some snacks of oranges. Ladybugs were still alive.
  • I was making dinner and kids were suddenly quiet. Big Bro had his spray-bottle out and was spraying everyone.
  • Then there were cries. The twins. Twin Crazy had soap in her hair/eyes and Twin Husky apparently got his hand smashed from the toilet seat top. I washed out Twin Crazy’s face while Twin Husky was on my lap crying. Both were fine; I carried both downstairs.
  • I later caught Big Bro with a towel with water wiping out Twin Crazy’s face and eye. How sweet.
  • I later caught Big Bro working with all of his younger siblings with tattoos. How sweet.
  • Twin Husky wanted to be held a bit so I gave in. I made games about biting and eating his ear and asked him if I could. He said NO and laughed.
  • We ate and they ate well. Big Bro ate an enormous amount of carrots.
  • Together we cleaned up. I cleaned up the dishes, Big Bro cleaned up the table with his spray-bottle, and Red cleaned up the diaper bags that were thrown all over the room. I commended them on helping and told them that since we were all working together we would get done so much faster and would have lots more time to play.
  • We took a quick walk to get the mail and move the stroller and we started to feel rain on our faces
  • I played “wall ball” with Big Bro and we got up to “eight” without stopping. We set a goal of “ten” for tomorrow. Twin Husky wanted to play too so we gave him a few turns. Big Bro was very patient and didn’t cause a fuss.
  • I sat with the girls on the step and I made a joke about “girl talk”. Red wanted to make a list of topics for girl talk and they include: dresses, princesses, and dora.
  • Twin Crazy announced the need to go potty but then we realized she had a tiny accident. I took off her underwear and pants and she was walking around in the buff. Which was OK until she had a poop accident. I feel like I have a dog in the house. All kids were walking around looking for overlooked poops.
  • Twin Husky went upstairs since it was almost time for bed and he apparently tried to turn on the lamp. I heard a huge crash and ran upstairs to find the lamp turned on but on the floor and Twin Husky bawling. The lamp apparently fell on his head but he was more scared than anything. I took him downstairs and held him on my lap until he calmed down.
  • I said it was time for bed and had Big Bro and Red tonight. I started to count to five and each started climbing the stairs immediately. They kept trying to trick me with toothbrushing but I eventually just left the room until they brushed their teeth properly. We read lots of books.
  • I told them the recap of the things they did today that made me so proud. Helping with shopping, helping with the younger siblings, helping clean up together, and playing. It was so great. I love talking with the kids like this. I love that they are at an age where I can have real conversations with them.
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    I am sitting in bed now so happy. I am so close to such a big transition. And I am so proud and happy with the kids and the people that they are. They listen to me. They respond to me. We have an ebb and flow and things are so much more relaxed. There was little to no negotiation tonight. They asked/pushed but I pushed back where needed and there were no breakdowns. I can’t wait to be on my own with these kids. I think things will be smoother after separation but from an emotional standpoint I worry for the kids. I’m not looking forward to sitting down and telling them what will be happening… so I’ll sit and relax and enjoy the rest of this feeling as-is, for now.

    Red had no problems going to sleep. Not a peep.

    I’m looking forward to tomorrow since I will have the Twins home with me. I can’t wait.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    April 24: Hiding


    Chocolate Tuesday! It was a great morning.

    Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • Twin Crazy was busy going potty when I made it upstairs. She got changed in regular clothes so of course her Twin Husky wanted to get changed into clothes too. So I held his hand and went to his room to have him pick out some clothes. He liked the Owl shirt with a big moon and he picked it because of the moon circle.
  • There was an issue with Red while she was laying in bed. She was cranky. She woke up at 4 AM last night and was a bit out of it this morning. I couldn’t figure out why she was upset. At first I thought it was because Twin Husky was putting lego wheels in a blue cup and she wanted the wheels. So we talked about it and Twin Husky went over to her and put the wheels by her head. Whew!!! Twin Husky has some empathy!!! This was a big relief/milestone for ME this morning. That wasn’t the issue. Red swooped the lego wheels all over the floor in a fit. I went down with Twin Crazy and told Red I would be back.
  • Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were busy looking at the (alive) ladybugs while their breakfast was getting prepared.
  • I went back up to Red. She was on the floor. She was upset about something. I’m not sure what. I tried to talk with her. She pursed her lips shut. I asked her if she was mad, if she was sad, if something happened to get her upset. I asked her if she was mad at me or if there was something I did. She eventually asked me to carry her blanket down, and her drinking cup. Then the smile came. And her shoes. And her jacket. And Big Bro’s shoes. And Big Bro’s jacket. We were laughing now. Since I had all this stuff to carry down I demanded that I AT LEAST also hold her hand. She became playful. I held her hand, then she rejected my hand, so I wanted a finger, or at least an elbow. She was finally in a good mood.
  • We arrived in the kitchen to see that Big Bro was sitting in her seat. She ran to the couch upset again and said that she had nowhere to sit. I don’t understand how co-parent runs into the SAME issues day after day. There are some things that can be done to stop the issues from happening. I don’t know if he is trying tough love or if he honestly does not get how these kids are wired. So then I had to do musical chairs, asking Big Bro to scoot around and asking Twin Crazy to give up her stool for a chair. We then had an available stool at the spot where Red usually sits. She then smiled again and ran to her breakfast.
  • Chocolate was everywhere. The kids were happy. The ladybugs were still alive.
  • Vitamins!
  • Twin Husky wanted me to hold him. I like this part of his personality now. I like walking him around and talking to him and teaching him things.
  • I helped the kids with their shoes, socks.
  • Big Bro is presenting his homework today – a poster that talks about himself. I will be thinking of my shy son today.
  • Big Bro went off on his scooter. Twin drop off was cute. Red drop off was clingy.
  • I forgot my mobile phone at home but had time to swing by and pick it up.
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    I’m on the ferry and thinking about work. I have client work to do today and also a planning meeting from the last session that I think I will postpone until I have a chance to talk to our director. I don’t want to spend too much time on this effort if we don’t think there is a chance that it will go somewhere. I also have some follow up with the other sessions to complete; and a debrief from one of the meetings.

    I’m in good spirits this morning. This is a big week for me. I feel like it is the right action to take. There are big meetings this week related to the house purchase and also the divorce. I think both will be emotionally draining but I am hopeful that coming out the other side will make me happier. I can’t wait to have a set of keys in my hand. I can’t wait to build a home for the kids. I need to be there for them to make it easier for them so that will be my next area of focus. Making sure I am doing everything I can do to protect these kids during the separation, and to make it as easy as possible for them and letting them know that I am a rock and will be there for them no matter what. That I am their biggest fan and will love them everyday and hold them close to my heart everyday, no matter what.

    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • Spent time at the bank making sure my checks were clearing OK for the funding of my downpayment for the mortgage. The person helping me was wonderful. I showed him pictures of my kids and that seemed to really help.
  • I had a debrief relating to one of the conferences and I want to focus on sales efforts sooner rather than later due to long sales cycle time.
  • I sent out materials from the other conference
  • I cancelled a meeting with the other meeting since I need to connect with my own Director first before I spend too much time on it
  • I had a client meeting to confirm our approach. We have two weeks left for the project and I’m looking forward to its end.
  • I also spent time related to divorce stuff; good, I think.
  • I’m on the boat now and it is sunny. I will be working 1/2 day tomorrow and the rest of the day will be devoted to signing loan documents. I am so close. I feel good. But I still have a raging headache…. I think my body and my mind is STILL decompressing from last week’s work events and lack of sleep. I’m looking forward to this Thursday. My day freed up totally so I’m looking forward to doing something with the kids. I still miss them. I feel like I haven’t connected fully with them yet and am looking forward to that. I’m looking forward to tonight and cooking for them. And being with them. And not being pulled into a different direction – they are my priority and I want them to feel like they are.

    Dinner and Bedtime:

  • I picked up Red and she ran to me with the biggest smile on her face. Over the last few weeks they were doing “planting” projects and their work was on display at school. My little gardener.
  • I picked up Twins next. Twin Husky was cracking me up with his stance as he was staring down a yappety dog.
  • I picked up Big Bro last, assuming he would want to scooter back home. He did.
  • As I cooked the kids were playing and checking out the ladybugs. Twin Crazy went poop and pee-pee on the potty so everyone got to enjoy some chocolate chips.
  • After dinner Big Bro and I played “wall ball”. I cleaned up from dinner and started some laundry. Twin Husky helped me put the dirty clothes in the washer.
  • Upstairs the kids were having some issues. Particularly Big Bro. He didn’t want Daddy. His words. He stayed with me as I read to the Twins. We talked about the book. We sang songs. Twin Husky loves to sing. We did our kiss routine and they climbed into their cribs.
  • I gave Red a huge hug and asked her if she FELT loved. She gave me another huge hug.
  • Big Bro is downstairs with me hiding on the floor. He doesn’t want to leave me. I feel so bad for these kids. He’s asleep right now next to me – it took him 30 seconds to fall asleep.
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    I have such a headache. I’m looking forward to a good night’s sleep and tomorrow. 1/2 day work, big meetings behind me, and a stack of paperwork to sign for the HOUSE. 🙂

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    April 23: Ladybugs


    My first day back at work after a week-long work trip for the conferences that I was planning for so long. Relief. And it was great to reconnect with the children over the weekend. I’m in a good place.

    Highlights of the Morning:

  • Twin Husky pointed to the parts of his head where he wanted me to kiss him. Twin Crazy said “Nossssing [nothing]” when I asked her. We laughed that she didn’t want a kiss from me yet.
  • We investigated the ladybugs that we found on a walk from yesterday. They are in a habitat and we were careful to put in some grass and leaves and some water. The problem is that I think we put in too much water. One of the two ladybugs was upside down floating in the water with its little legs scrambling for dear life. I’m not sure how long he was there like that but we saved him…. only to have him roll around again and land back in the water. It will be a miracle if both ladybugs are still alive by the time we get home tonight.
  • Twin Husky was counting his fingers. I wish I caught it on video.
  • Red was great this morning. Came down dressed and ready to eat. But we ran out of cereal. I need to go shopping this week to replenish the necessities that we ran out of from last week.
  • Big Bro came down half dressed, but his hair done from a water spray bottle and a comb. He has a thick mound of hair. He looked great except for the hairstyle he gave himself. I suggested keeping in flat in the back, but brushing it and tassling it a bit up front to give him some spunk/style. But I said he looked great and very handsome and he welcomed my huge hug this morning.
  • Twin Husky wanted me to change his diaper this morning. He also wanted me to hold him and talk to him. I think this is his way of telling me that he missed me. He usually favors co-parent and I usually don’t get this much attention from him in the morning.
  • Twin Crazy pooped in the potty! We all ran into the bathroom to see it. We all cheered! So she received two chocolate chips and everyone else got one chocolate chip to celebrate. We are so proud of her.
  • I helped Big Bro with his socks and shoes (his “mommy time”) and Red with her shoes.
  • Big Bro went off with the Motley Crew and he decided to ride his scooter.
  • I said goodbye to the Twins and co-parent went to drop them off.
  • I took Red to school and they were happy to see me back. They said she did great but by around Wednesday she was showing signs of distress. A nightmare at nap, and Thursday and Friday she was quiet. But I am back now.
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    So I’m on the ferry thinking about some things I need to do at work. I am leading a debrief call for one of the three meetings we held last week. We are also interviewing a potential hire. I have to decompress from the other two big meetings and identify the take-aways/learnings/follow ups from each of them. And figure out a timeline to get the things done and can even start planning ahead – securing the date/location and also reaching out to known speakers to get them to Save The Date. I also have to catch up on the client project that I should NOT be involved with. We are wrapping up the project and I need to make sure that we end on a good note with the client.

    I also have work to do on a personal front. This is a big week for me. Signing loan documents for my very first house purchase and making sure that things are done on my end to make everything go smoothly. There are also other big meetings related to the divorce but I feel like I can focus on this now that the big conferences are behind me.

    I am excited about shopping for the house. I will not start to do this until I have keys in hand. I am excited about getting a fence and handrails to make the front and backyards safe for the kids. Lemon and organge trees to plant… along with blackberry bushes in the back of the property. A refrigerator. A washer and dryer. And eventually, over the next month, the furniture that we will use as a family. I want to have the kids involved in this and will seek advice from our child custody mediator the best way to introduce them to their new home. I am so excited and I want to share this excitement with the children. And hopefully the separation will be a bit easier for them if they feel comfortable and happy in their new home that they helped to create with me.

    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I had a debrief conference call relating to the one “sell” meeting from last week. I took it in a coffee shop since I couldn’t get to my desk in time. There is more work to do and I’m not sure of the liklihood of success for any of it; I need to figure out go-forward plan since I don’t fully trust one of the folks we are working with… to be continued….
  • I interviewed a candidate that we are considering hiring. I like her.
  • I started to compile my thoughts on to-dos post meetings from last week. Things are looking good and I have a sense of what needs to be done.
  • Went out to lunch with the interview candidate and others on our team. It was DELICIOUS
  • I had another debrief regarding one of the conferences from last week. There are some changes that we want to do next time around relating on revenue models and other logistics. I’m feeling good with this one.
  • I had a meeting with our project team related to the client project. We have set forth a good go-forward plan for the next two weeks and will put our thoughts to paper for our touchpoint with the client tomorrow. We will need to put time against this to make this project successful.
  • I also had personal things to attend to today — this is a big week with closing on the house!!!!
  • So now I’m on a train headed to my monthly appointment with my doctor. I have a lot on my mind and talking with him is always very helpful for me. He helps me put things in focus and gives me encouragement to stay the course. This is a very busy time in my life with lots of ups and downs, but I believe the trajectory is on the way up. And I like testing these thoughts with him to make sure I’m still thinking rationally and realistically.

    I will hopefully get home in time to say goodnight to the kids and give them their hugs and be part of their nighttime routine. And later tonight I will focus on the divorce and also the things I will need to buy for my NEW HOUSE!!!!

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    Staying Sane: Soak it in


    I was traveling for work all last week. I missed the kids but was busy with clients all week. I talked to the kids on Monday night and Tuesday night which was fun. I was not able to talk to them the rest of the week due to difficulties with co-parent.

    So I was feeling a little lost by the end of the week. This changed during my return.

    I walked into the house while Red was crying over something. As soon as she saw me she stopped crying and ran to me smiling. Big Bro gave me a big hug. Twin Crazy was excited. Twin Husky just walked around aimlessly and went over to play with the hose. I had to go to him and ask him where I could kiss him, he pointed to the top of his head, so that’s where I went with a big kiss.

    The kids were all playing outside with water and sprinklers – and all with no clothes on. No inhibitions. Just themselves. Nothing to hide behind. Playing and enjoying the water. And laughing. And I was glad to be back with them.

    And later that evening, Twin Crazy came to me and sat on my lap and gave me a HUGE hug and would not let go and started singing to me. And I just sat there with her rocking her and not interrupting her song.

     

    Imagine how I felt.

    The rest of the weekend felt the same way. Even if the kids were not singing so directly. Smiles. Requests for help. Holding my hand. Wanting me to come on a walk too. And usually I am boisterous and initiating the craziness. But this time I was still wiped out and just wanted to see them in a pure state. They were the leaders and I the follower.

    And I felt happy to be back with them again.
    Great week to all –
    – Mama K

    April 19: almost there


    The end of the third full day. Very tired and full from a fabulous dinner. Appraisal came in today and house was valued over offer price!!!! I am one BIG step closer to being a homeowner!!!!! Meetings went well. I’m not even going to try to call home tonight.

    Going to sleep now
    Mama K

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