Monday, November 24, 2014

On Stepparenting

I think I've said this before, but having a child hasn't made me understand my parents any better.  But having a stepdaughter has not only given me some insight into how fucked up my parents were/are, it's also given me tremendous amounts of sympathy and understanding for my own stepmother.

So, I'd never dated anyone with children until I met Mr. Adventure.  I wasn't interested in the responsibility, so I respectfully kept myself out of the single-parent dating pool.  I had a pretty rough weekend that kind of confirmed my reasons for never doing it before.  I read in Suburban Turmoil that over 70% of blended family marriages end in divorce.  Those are some freakishly high statistics.  And I can see why.  It's tough on parents who didn't/couldn't communicate well when they were dating or married to communicate after a break-up when there are a lot of negative feelings floating around.  And it's hard on stepparents.  I've kind of viewed my role as one of support.  Because I'm not Little Miss Adventure's (LMA) mom and I know that.

98% of problems stem from miscommunication.  And LMA was going to be with us through Thanksgiving this week, but her mom changed plans at kind of the last minute and it really bummed me out.  The kid loves to cook and I had already planned out how we were going to do all the prep work on Wednesday night and she would help me make pies and how fun it was going to be.  Now it's just going to be me and a bottle of wine, making Thanksgiving dinner and feeling sorry for myself because a kid, who I really have no claim to, isn't there to help me.  Boohoohoo.  Poor me.  Blah blah blah.  If I start early enough, I can always get Hamburglar to help me by pulling all the pots and pans out of the cupboards...

So, Suburban Turmoil wrote a piece called "10 Brutal Truths About being a Stepmom" and number 9 really hit home for me.  You can't fix what you didn't break.  My desire for everyone to get along and be super respectful of each other and be this super collaborative co-parenting team for LMA isn't going to happen any time soon.  And there's not really anything I can do other than be supportive and help out when I'm asked.

So, I'm just telling myself two things when situations come up and I don't like how it is being handled: 1) Not my monkeys, not my circus and 2) You can't fix what you didn't break.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Gender and sexual identity for children!

I picked up Little Miss Adventure (LMA) from school on Friday and, while we were driving, we got on the subject of love and marriage and I don't even know what.

LMA: When I grow up, I'm going to marry two girls!  I mean, two boys!

Me: You can marry a girl if you want to.

LMA: That's silly.

Me: Girls can marry girls and boys can marry boys.  I have friends in Chicago who are both girls and they love each other and they are getting married and my old roommates, who are both boys were recently, married, too!

LMA: When I grow up, I'm going to marry a house!

Me: You've lived in Idaho too long.

I've come to the conclusion that politicians and people who argue that "next people will want to marry animals or inanimate objects" or whatever are obviously getting their logic from first graders.  And I figured I should save the polygamy talk for another day.

LMA has a reading assignment for the month of November.  For every 15 minutes she reads or someone reads to her, she gets to color in a turkey on a piece of paper.  I was reading her a story called, "Yuck!  That's Not a Monster!"  In the story, a super cute little pink monster is born to some monster parents.  The pink monster is a he in the story.  We've been working on not correcting adults in our house and LMA corrected me when I was reading the story.  Mr. Adventure sent her to the corner and talked to her again about correcting adults and asked which of us is the better reader and so on.

She said it looked like a girl to her, which sparked a conversation in our house about gender and how boys can wear pink and girls can wear blue and liking a certain color doesn't mean that you are not a boy or girl or whatever.  Then she said that gay people wear pink, which spawned a whole other conversation about how liking certain colors is not indicative of sexual preference and blah blah blah.

Basically, we all learned a lot this weekend.  Hopefully some of what we were saying stuck with the Little Miss.

In Hamburglar news...

He's in the fussy phase of Wonder Week mental leap 9 and he's teething and crying a ton and getting into EVERYTHING.  I think I like him better when he wasn't mobile.

Not really, but I'm really glad to be at work today.

He and I went on a downtown adventure on Saturday and went to the different shops and bookstores and visited all of our favorite downtown people and got some coffee and a new wooden toy.  Then we went to a puppet show at the Library!  Then home for a nap.  It was fun.

He and I also got some new socks, since Owen keeps eating them all.

And that's about it.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The park, the zoo and a lot of poo

We went to Boo at the Zoo on the 25th.  Little Miss Adventure and I had sparkly masquerade masks we'd picked up for $7 each at Pier One, Mr. Adventure wore Groucho glasses and the wee babe was dressed as Chucky.  It was fun and funny.  I saw about 3,000 little girls dressed as Elsa, but no little Elsas came trick-or-treating at our house on Halloween.

Hamburglar and I are still in the weaning process.  We hit a bit of a lull because I wasn't sure how to stop the morning or night feedings, but we've skipped out on the morning feedings four days in a row, now.  He's waking up a little bit earlier, but that's okay.  I keep wondering if each session is going to be the last.  He's becoming less interested in the night feeding, too.  Which means my goal of being completely done breastfeeding by 15 months is likely going to happen.

It's the end of an era.

Mr. Adventure experienced the Poo-Pocalypse about a week and a half ago.  Chumbercules slept in late the Friday before last and he normally sleeps in a disposable diaper, and nothing else.  Mr. Adventure woke up at 9:30a and went into the babe's room and found poo everywhere.  It was in Hamburglar's hair and eyes and mouth and on the wall and all over the crib and in between the crib mattress and the crib frame... When Mr. Adventure went in there, Chumby was balling it up and dropping it on the floor.  Mr. Adventure has a sensitive stomach and is easily grossed out (I'm assuming it's because he was an only child) and he claims to have vomited twice during clean up.

Events like this make me feel better about working all day.

Halloween came.  We took Little Miss Adventure trick-or-treating.  Or, her dad took her.  She was dressed as Aurora and was pretty damn cute.  Chumbercules and I stayed home, watched Elvira, and handed out candy.  He was really into the Monsta Rap.  And yelling excitedly at trick-or-treaters.  I think we'll take him out when he's 3?  Maybe 4?  I don't know.  The following day, the Little Miss put her princess crown on Owen.  He looked very handsome.

Saturday Hamburglar and I went to story time at the library.  And we went to the Nordstrom rack and I found some rad baby toys, including this guy from Skip Hop.  I love wooden toys, and I love this giraffe.  It was $6 at the rack.  I also got him some bath toys for $3 and talked myself out of spending the rest of my paycheck on adorable dresses for the Little Miss.  I think I may take her out to find a fancy holiday dress the next time we have her.

Saturday it monsooned all afternoon and all night.  So we were going a bit stir crazy.  I baked muffins Sunday morning and Rupert ate most of them off the counter, because he's a dick.  Then Chumby and I went to the park.  I was trying to get him to walk to the play area from the car, but the play area is around the bend and he really wanted to put leaves in his mouth.  Once I got him to where he could see the playground, he headed straight for the swings.  because the swings are obvs the best thing ever.  I got some really good pictures.

One of my favorite bloggers posted a while ago about photo wallpaper, and I've been mentally putting together our wallpaper photo thing in my head for a while now.  After we paint, it's going above the couch in the living room.

I think I want a real camera.  Since I'm the one that typically photographs our lives, I think my old Galaxy S2 isn't really cutting it anymore.  I have 1700 photos on my phone, because I don't want to delete them.  Because I'm a photo hoarder.  Even though I have them all backed up in the Cloud.