Sunday, November 29, 2009

Her Royal Poopy Pants

It's been a banner week in our household. Cameron ran a fever on Tuesday so she had to stay home from school on Wednesday. She wasn't sick or anything. I think it was just a result of teething and the fever didn't reappear. I am very much looking forward to her return to school on Monday because over the past 5 days Cameron has blown out 14 diapers. Yes, you read that correctly. 14. How do I know? The number of outfits I've had to change her into. I've done laundry for her twice and still ended up with some stained onesies.

The problem is that she now sits up all the time and is crawling. So the poop has no place to go but up the back. It doesn't matter how tight I tie the diaper. I considered moving her up in diaper size but she is too small for the weight range of the next size. I have been relegated to many sniff tests throughout the day. Usually there is a pattern to her pooping but she manages to sneak a few in during the day that I've missed. The best was Saturday when I had to give her a bath because poop ended up all the way to her shoulders. Fun times.

I know many parents stress because their children don't poop that often. I have the opposite problem. Cameron is pooping 4-5 times a day. I don't think anything is wrong with her. Far from it. But at this rate I will run out of unstained onesies! Not to mention the amount of laundry I've had to do. So, has anyone else conquered this problem? And my apologies for anyone who is offended for this post about poop. What can I say? I'm a mom!

The smile of a baby who just pooped.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Cameron's first Thanksgiving

For the past few years DH and I have eschewed Thanksgiving. We live far enough away that it didn't make sense for us to travel home for the holiday. Especially with Christmas just around the corner. So I was thrilled when Amanda invited us over for her Orphan Thanksgiving. 10 friends came together to eat lots of food, drink more than was necessary and have a wonderful time.

I am thankful for wonderful family and friends to spend the holidays with. We are laying low this weekend and avoiding the holiday crowds. But I can't wait to start decorating for Christmas!
Cameron and Holden play together after dinner.
Bread in the shape of a turkey. Awesome!
Yummy food.
The dinner table is set for 10.
Cameron chases Charlie around.
Cameron decides Charlie's toy is hers.
Proof of Cameron's new ability: crawling. Sorta.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cameron: eight months old

Dear Cameron,

Today you are eight months old. This past month has been wonderful for all of us. You are such a happy baby that it is a pleasure to be around you. We look forward to the precious hours in the evening when we can cuddle and play.

This month you have learned to sit up on your own for extended periods of time. You have also started crawling.

Your two bottom teeth are being joined by the top two. It was a lot harder this time around with interrupted sleep and crying but they have finally popped through. You love your solid food and will sit happily in your high chair munching on puffs while Mommy and Daddy get dinner ready. Your success rate at getting the food into your mouth is increasing every day. I don't think Charlie likes that because it means less snacks for him!

The weekends are so much fun for us. You love your Saturday swimming lessons and can already put your face in the water. It also helps tucker you out which gives Mommy a nice 2 or 2 1/2 hour break for your afternoon nap. I am more than happy to keep that going for as long as possible!

You laugh all the time but especially for Daddy and Charlie. We can't wait to see what you will do next!

Mommy and Daddy

Monday, November 23, 2009

Damn you, Wheel of Time!

To say that I am an avid reader is putting it mildly. My husband is a bit in awe of the number of books I've read. And re-read. I primarily read books in the Fantasy genre. Usually what that means is an author writes anywhere from 3 to 15 books in a series. And if I'm hooked then I wait eagerly for each new title in the series. Sometimes I wait for years. And I am not exaggerating.

One of my favorite series is Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. There are currently 12 books in the series: 11 and one prequel. I've read them all many times. Each book is about 600 pages so they aren't short reads. I've probably spent months of my life reading the words that Robert Jordan has written. Then three years ago he died. Yup, he died and the series hadn't been finished. However, he died of a terminal disease so he put plans in place for another author to take over the final book in the series.

Every few months over the course of the past three years I've checked in to see when the final book was coming out. I found out yesterday that it was published in late October. I was outraged. "I could have read the book weeks ago!" I told my husband. "How could I not know?" Internet fail! So while Cameron took her afternoon nap I rushed over to B&N to pick up the book. While waiting in line I read the dust jacket. The opening paragraph announced grandly that the last book is so epic that it has been split into three books. I almost starting laughing hysterically.

Argh!!!!!! So I've been laboring under the wrong assumption that the series would be concluded with this last volume. Damn you, publishers who are milking a dead man's last book! Looks like I have another 3 years before the series will actually be finished. Sigh. Good thing I can go back and re-read the other 12. That should keep me busy for a few weeks at least :-)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Teething and other challenges

Poor Cameron has been teething for the past few days. Her upper gums are swollen but no signs of teeth poking through yet so it appears as though we are in for a bit of a rough ride for the next week or so. With her bottom two teeth we saw little signs of fussiness or pain. This time around Cameron has woken up crying several times.

It would probably be less painful all around if Cameron was willing to take medication. But Cameron has decided that she doesn't want to take anything. Not motrin, not Tylenol, nothing. She clamps her mouth shut and shakes her head violently while slapping our hands away. Good times. I've tried given it to her in a multitude of ways but she doesn't want it. Anyone else have this problem?

The other challenge for us has been around eating solid food. It usually crops up during dinner. Cameron will whack her hands against the tray and many times manages to hit the spoon and coat herself and us with food. If we're lucky she will eat about a 1/4 of the jar before we give up and spend the next ten minutes cleaning up. Apparently she doesn't engage in this behavior at day care. She saves it up for us. Thanks, Cameron! Again, looking for validation and help with this issue. So please let me know if you've encountered it and managed it successfully.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The new normal

I think of myself as a very habitual person. I get up around the same time every day (yes, I do miss the pre-baby weekend snooze fests), have a consistent morning and evening routine and generally know what is going to happen at any given point during the day. And I like it that way. Consistency is my friend. So you can imagine that I had some trepidation about how a baby was going to change everything. Good news! Yes, my life changed but it quickly settled into a new routine that has changed slightly as Cameron has grown.
  • Sleeping through the night. While sometimes it feels like just yesterday I was up 2-3 times a night to feed Cameron it's actually been a good stretch of time that she has been sleeping 11-12 hours a night. Pure bliss. The only problem? I'm completely used to it and I jealously guard my sleep. Does Cameron have a cold? Crap! Now she might wake up which means either DH or I are up. Teething? Looks like it's time for some Tylenol. Yes, I am not afraid to provide OTC drugs if that means I get to sleep uninterrupted.
  • Errands are short and sweet. No longer can I run out for hours on end to do errands or get a manicure on the weekend. Now it is a matter of fitting tasks in between naps for external errands and during naps for home maintenance. I have found myself ordering clothes online because I don't have time to browse through the mall looking for that perfect outfit. I guess I'll have to leverage the Internet for my Christmas purchases too.
  • I shop for Cameron, not me. Even last weekend when I went out because I needed a new work outfit for the 3 days of meetings I have this week I ended up buying a couple of things for Cameron, not me. It's just so much easier to find stuff for her! And infant girl clothing is so cute, isn't it?

  • Evenings are family time. I have about 30 minutes to myself when I arrive home from work assuming Cameron takes a third nap and DH is still working. Usually I spend the time doing lots of different things but sometimes I completely veg out. Once 5:30 rolls around, however, it is all about Cameron until she goes to bed at 7 PM. Then DH and I have dinner and watch something on TV. If we are adventurous we might watch a movie. Yes, we really are that exciting!

At almost 8 months in, things are good and pretty easy. So, what do I have to look forward to as Cameron starts becoming more mobile and she gets older? How have you adjusted the the new normal?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Who needs to win the lottery when you can just die instead?

It's official. DH and I are insured. Apparently if either of us dies while engaging in a felony all bets are off but they didn't say anything about murdering the other person. Bwah ha ha ha ha. Of course if I kill DH, who will rake all of the leaves? I'm better off waiting until the Spring.

The whole process to get term life insurance was kind of a pain in the ass. Sure, we could have gone through an Internet site and spent less time but DH wanted to start with MetLife who is our current P&C and Home Insurance provider. MetLife referred us to an independent firm in Charlotte a few miles from our house. DH placed the initial call, got some numbers and we went down to meet with the financial advisor. "Financial advisor?" you might be asking. Yes, which is probably why the process took far longer than it should have.

DH told me that the guy he spoke with was young so I wasn't surprised when a young man came out to greet us when we arrived. By the way, this was a Friday so I was attired in jeans and a sweatshirt. Hey, I enjoy working from home on Fridays so there was no way I was going to dress up to spend far too much money for a "just in case" situation. After we settled into the conference room an older man entered and introduced himself as Bill. He was the "big guns" and the person we ended up dealing with for the rest of the process. We never saw the young man again. He made such an impression I can't even remember his name.

Would you be shocked if I told you I finally had to cut our meeting short after 90 minutes because I had a conference call I needed to be on? Yes, apparently it takes 90 minutes to convince Bill that no, we really do just want term life insurance. No, we aren't interested in learning more about the financial advice and products you offer. Let's just see how this goes first (and by the way, not great so far!). No, just term life insurance. We aren't interested in Whole Life or Universal Life right now. OK, it's been an hour. Can we go ahead an put some numbers up now?

DH loves that I tend to be the more assertive person in these meetings. As someone who sits on hours of meetings every day I try not to beat around the bush. Give me the information, identify the follow up and move on. Bill finally took some information from us and plugged it into the MetLife online tool. It was a complete waste of time because he generated the same numbers that DH got over the phone from Young Man. Basically what it boiled down to was the numbers depend on our test results and smoker status. I quit smoking two years ago but DH was more like 18 months so he was falling under the "less than 2 years" category.

Upon the recommendation from Bill we decided to request quotes from two providers. Part of the application process required that Bill and Young Man verbally ask us questions and write down our responses. I'm not really sure why that was required but insurance is still one of those laggards related to technology and process improvement. I would think at this point that there would be some kind of universal application that could be sent to dozens of firms at one time. But I guess there are enough differences in what firms look for in order to calculate their rates that every application must be completed separately. 30 minutes later we escaped and scheduled an appointment for a nurse to come and take blood and urine samples. Wow, that woman was efficient! She was at our house for maybe 20 minutes and had just as much paperwork to fill out as Bill.

Two weeks later we had received our reports back from the two providers. Everything looked good numbers-wise. DH's cholesterol levels were much better than anticipated which was a nice surprise. We trekked back into Bill's office to receive the final numbers and figure out next steps. The numbers actually looked really good from one provider and were about 20% higher for the other. Not surprisingly DH's rates were much higher than mine. Apparently women are cheaper to insure because we live longer. Because we are just going with term we decided to go with the cheaper option. Bill then started talking about annual vs. monthly payments. He told us, "I know that there isn't a big savings but..." I interrupted him, "Well, amortized over the lifetime of the loan it is quite substantial." That kind of shut him up and he didn't try to push us any more on other products. I love it when I can pull out my MBA knowledge. I rarely get to use the financial aspects of my degree in my daily work life.

DH is going in today to drop off the check and we will have completed one of life's major milestones: getting life insurance. How did your experience compare to ours? Did you just get term insurance or did you mix it with other products?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mid-season reviews of TV shows

DVR is ruining my TV watching ability. I have 5 episodes of Fringe and 2 of Grey's Anatomy still to watch. But I have managed to stay up with a bunch of new shows and also some returning ones (Thank you, Hulu! Curses to all the networks who won't air their episodes on it!). So here are my thoughts about returning and new TV shows now that we are in the midst of November sweeps.

In terms of Grey's Anatomy, DH and I had an epiphany about why it's been so hard to watch the episodes. After Mercy merged with Seattle Grace and we were introduced to the new characters I turned to DH and said, "All of these new characters are assholes." His response, "All of the characters are assholes now." And that hit the nail on the head. Why do we want to watch these people when they are so self absorbed and mean to each other? If I wanted to do that I'd watch Private Practice. Tee hee hee hee. Fortunately we just watched the Derrick-gets-his-mojo-back episode and it was probably one of the best episodes in a very long time, including last season. So I have hope again although I don't miss Izzy at all so I'm not looking forward to her return.

Modern Family has consistently been one of the best shows we now watch. There are tons of laugh-out-loud moments and the gay couple is totally disfunctionally awesome. If you don't watch it yet you should add it to your DVR list. Other good comedies that I've been able to keep up with via Hulu are Community, 30 Rock and Cougar Town. Yes, I did say Cougar Town. I know, I'm just as surprised as you! Creatively 30 Rock is a bit down for me this season. I feel like they are really stretching with some of the over the top jokes. Best line of last week though was Kenneth: "That's about as useful as a mom's college degree." Awesome.

Glee continues to perform well with the musical numbers and the amazing Jane Lynch. The biggest problem for me is the Quinn pregnancy storyline. And I hate, hate that Will's wife is going to take the baby (supposedly). It just doesn't work for me. I'd prefer the show if it was focused more on general teen problems and didn't go so early to the teen pregnancy.

FlashForward is definitely one of the better serial dramas. Not sure I buy into the premise that they can change their future but I guess it will be born out over the season. They just need to keep up their momentum. This past week's episode was a little weak for me. DH and I have been taping V but we are waiting to watch it when his parents come to visit. Apparently his mom was a fan of the original. So, no review of that show from me although I'm hearing that it will be yanked after 5 episodes not to return until after the Winter Olympics. Not a good sign.

House has really lost it's mojo for me. I still like Dr. House but I hate the Cameron/Chase storyline. Who knew I'd be on board with the new team after I bitched so much when they broke up the band? I guess the suckittude that is Chase and Cameron made me change my mind. I never thought I'd say this but, "Come back, Thirteen!"

I started watching White Collar on Hulu when I was bored one day. It's pretty cute and I am happy that Tiffany Thiessen is working again. And the main character is very, very good looking. I showed him to DH yesterday while he was watching football. "That guy is annoyingly handsome," he told me. And oh so yummy to look at.

The Good Wife has settled in to a nice groove. Not much movement on the larger, overarching storyline but I'm OK with that. The characters are pretty well drawn and it's nice to have another female driven drama on the air. But one that isn't too slap-stick (yes, Desperate Housewives, I'm looking at you!).

How about the rest of you? Any shows you are watching that have taken a downturn in creativity? Any new shows that I should be adding to my list?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Batten down the hatches: Cameron starts crawling

Despite being struck down by another (!) cold, Cameron decided on Friday night that she was ready to start crawling. It is still kind of "commando-like" in the sense that she isn't up on all fours but she moving a lot more purposely now than ever before. I attempted to get a video of it but it's like she knew I had the camera ready to go and would stop crawling and start rolling around instead. Clever little girl.

DH and I haven't started baby proofing the house yet but we need to get moving on it. Cameron's first stops in her trek across the room including whacking her head on the coffee table leg and trying to eat my power cord. I think we are going to remove the coffee table temporarily and bring in something smaller and padded. I picked somthing up at Target but I wish it was a foot longer. Then I could still keep my computer on it while eating. Yes, DH and I eat at the coffee table. It's a habit we haven't had to break yet with Cameron's current evening schedule.

Cameron is sitting on the couch. She still hasn't quite grasped how to sit for extended periods of time. I would have preferred she work on that skill before crawling but I get no say in the matter.
Cameron prefers to grab her own toys out of her little toy bin.
Charlie is already apprehensive about Cameron starting to crawl. Sorry, buddy, but she will definitely go for you first!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

In the market for a stroller and car seat

Yesterday was a Bank holiday which was perfect because Cameron's school had a teacher's workshop day so it was closed. DH and I took Cameron to the doctor's office for a quick check up and H1N1 vaccination. I scheduled her an appointment last week because she has been battling a cold for several weeks and I was concerned about the wheezing I heard, especially when she first woke up. We have a humidifier running but it didn't seem to help. Isn't it totally typically that of course Cameron sounds much better and all her symptoms stopped just before we went to the doctor's? We went anyway because I had called the day before and asked if they FINALLY had any H1N1 flu shots in and they did.

As we walked back to the room I asked the nurse if Cameron could get her H1N1 first vaccination while we were there. I couldn't schedule for it because technically it was a "sick" appointment. The nurse replied, "We have some but not for her age group." Immediately I questioned her, "What do you mean? What age group is getting the shots?" She avoided answering and directed me to talk to the doctor when we saw him. I have to admit I stewed a little. Cameron is only seven and half months old and in day care full time. How can she not be in one of the age groups that the practice was prioritizing. Fortunately the doctor was excited that we wanted to vaccinate Cameron and he ordered the shot for us. Apparently there were only 5 doses left so I guess it's a good thing we had an 8:30 AM appointment! Now I have to schedule her booster shot but I figure there should be less supply issues in a month.

Cameron is up to 18 pounds, 9 ounces. Not sure what % that puts her in but she is trucking right along with her growth. And getting VERY heavy to lug in her Graco SnugRide car seat. What does that mean for us? Time to start researching new car seats and strollers. I would love to hear recommendations from readers for both. In the car seat arena we are looking for a convertible and something that isn't too expensive since we have to get two car seats for day care pick up / drop off purposes. For a stroller I am looking for something fairly light and easy to open and close. Other than that I just need it to recline enough so that Cameron can nap if we happen to be on the go. I know many of you have been down this path before so any and all advice is welcome!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Taking out the trash

Yesterday saw a new shift at my office. No more individual waste baskets at our desks. And it is extremely annoying. Sitting on my desk right now are the remains of my breakfast because I'm already procrastinating getting up and walking the 50 feet to the centralized trash repository. And you have no idea how many times I've gone to throw something into my trash only to realize after I've thrown it down that the trash isn't there!

BigFinance leases my office space so I can't even blame my own company. No, instead it is the facility management that came up with this plan that will supposedly save about 70K in expenses across the country in total for the next 3 years. So doing this for my office saves them like $100 a year. Thanks, guys! Here's the method behind the madness. First of all if the janitorial staff doesn't have to empty individual trashes it takes them less time to clean. OK, I buy that. The second piece to the change is to start having our office space cleaned during the day rather than after work hours. Yes, that does include vacuuming. The reasoning? It will save money because now when people go home for the day there is no one in the building and the lights go off earlier. So not only is it saving electricity money it is also more "green." Don't you just love how they threw that one in? Plus apparently this allows us to get to know the cleaning staff better and communicate our specific cleaning needs. Yeah. That's going to happen.

So far I don't mind the day cleaning. What I do mind is not having my own trash can. I would be more than willing to empty my own trash into a central repository. Now I don't even have that option as they have donated all trash cans to some homeless shelter. I wonder what that place is going to do with hundreds of trash cans?

Has anyone else had any changes like this at work? First it was not providing paper cups or plastic utensils. Now it's trash cans. People have compensated in the past by bringing personal items into work to replace those originally provided. I wonder if I should do that here or if they will keep removing my trash can every night. Could get expensive...

Monday, November 9, 2009

First swim lesson

This past weekend saw wonderful weather. What did that mean? DH made me rake. After about 30 minutes I was ready to stop. Guess a 30 Day Rake would be just as good as a 30 Day Shred!

Before the raking commenced we took an hour out of our Saturday and went to the pool for Cameron's first swim lesson. There were 3 other kids in the class and I was very impressed to see another seven month old getting fully submerged for a count of three. Because it was Cameron's first lesson she didn't go under water. Instead we focused on linking "Ready, set" followed by a deep breath with the idea of submersion. And for the babies farther along you could see them take a deep breath and close their eyes before they went under water. Very cool!

DH took photos and I apologize for the quality. He was in the "viewing room" which had a big plexiglass window so he couldn't use the flash. I had my own cheering section comprised of DH but we were far outnumbered by the other families there. Two of the other babies there had grandparents in addition to parents. And they had been taking lessons for weeks. I guess I'm just a little jealous since our families live so far away.

When we got home Cameron took her second two hour nap. Yes, my baby has been consistently taking 2 two hour naps every day on the weekend. Woo hoo! Of course that just meant I had to spend more time outside raking. Curses!
Cameron prefers to chew on the fish that blows bubbles rather than learn how to blow them herself.
Just like in Hilton Head Cameron loved the water.
Floating around in a "motor boat." Cameron was a slippery little bugger and kept trying to twist her body around which would cause her to fall through the hole.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Friday Photos

First off let me wish my wonderful grandmother, Mimi, a very happy birthday. I would tell you her age but she would kick my butt!

This week has been challenging for me work-wise. Lots of issues with my projects and lots of waiting around for other people to get their jobs done. So it has been absolutely wonderful to spend an hour or two with Cameron before she goes down for bed.

Cameron is now sitting up for a few minutes at a time. She still isn't quite steady on her own so I have piled two boppies behind her for extra support.
What I love the most about this picture is that it highlights the double chin. My little chunk monster!
Like her daddy, Cameron is not a fan of peas.
Here is a video DH took while feeding Cameron. You will see two distinct favorite actions: the head shake and the raspberry.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Is it too early to start saying no?

Cameron has learned a new trick. She likes to shake her head back and forth to basically tell DH and I "no". Or the infant equivalent of F-U-. I can only imagine that she picked up this skill in daycare.

When does Cameron break out the head shake? Usually while eating. No more solid food? Head shake. No more bottle? Head shake. Medicine to help with teething or coughing? Head shake. And the medicine tastes good! Weirdo. Cameron also likes to purse her lips together tightly while engaging what is sometimes a full body twist and shout.

Every time she starts the head shake and lip clench I mutter, "You are so stubborn! Just like your father." And it's true. He's very stubborn.

Cameron also likes to bat her hands around frantically if she isn't happy with us (see above with food or medicine administration). DH has started putting his hands down over hers and saying "No" in a very firm voice. I originally protested because hey, Cameron is only 7 months old. That's too young to be telling her no, right? But then I thought, "Crap, she's only 5 months away from being a year old! Maybe it's isn't too early?!?"

So I pose the question to you, when did you start consistently telling your children no? Any tricks and tips for handling infants in particular? And when did your children start telling you no? Is Cameron particularly precocious with her head shaking?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Packing away some infant must haves

Now that Cameron is seven months old I have been reviewing items that can be moved into storage. I say moved rather than sold or given away because I'm not quite ready to put that closed sign on my uterus.

First to get packed up was all my maternity clothes. Yes, I do miss those comfy pants. There is something to be said for waist bands that went over your entire belly, pregnant or not! That was immediately followed by Cameron's infant and 0-3 month clothing. Then I was at a standstill and instead of getting rid of things I found myself adding to them: more clothes, more toys, more bottles, and more furniture masquerading as toys (I'm looking at you, exersaucer!).

After that lull in the 3-6 month range I reevaluated the items still strewn around my house and made executive decisions to pack a few things up that I didn't think Cameron needed any more. First to go? The swing. Ever since I unswaddled Cameron I created a new process of putting her down for naps and bedtime. Nothing fancy but it involved rocking her for a few minutes and putting her down awake in her crib. We primarily used the swing to get Cameron to fall asleep or stay asleep. After three weeks of not using the swing once and glaring at it for taking up so much room in my library I asked DH to take it down and move it to the attic.

The next item to get packed up (although it is still waiting transfer to the attic) is the playmat. Cameron LOVED this toy for the first 5+ months of her life. But once she started rolling she wanted wide open spaces. I removed all the hanging toys and she still plays with those but the playmat has been decommissioned from use.

Also awaiting transfer (but need to clean out a closet first) is the Pack 'N Play. We had it up in the library full time but were only using it for changing Cameron's diapers. Now I just take her upstairs or change her on the floor in the TV. Much easier and removes another bulky item from my library. Next to go will probably be the boppies. I have two of them and they were a requirement while I breastfed Cameron. But now that she is exclusively formula they turned more into brightly colored and patterned cushions. For now we still use them, primarily to prop up Cameron while she is learning to sit up on her own. But once she masters that skill to the attic they will go!

How about the rest of you? What were some of the first things (aside from clothes) you either got rid of or moved into storage? And send good thoughts my's rare to have a basement in Charlotte and I am already feeling the lack!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Climbing the corporate ladder while juggling a family

I came across a great article in the NY Times Magazine on the Obama's marriage. Click here for the full text. The reporter asked, " any couple can have a truly equal partnership when one member is president?

The president deflected but his wife responded, "Clearly Barack’s career decisions are leading us. They’re not mine; that’s obvious. I’m married to the president of the United States. I don’t have another job, and it would be problematic in this role. So that — you can’t even measure that."

The past two moves that our family has made have been for my career. First we moved from Boston to Charlottesville for my MBA program and then to Charlotte to work for BigFinance. I am fortunate that DH is able to work from home and it hasn't limited him from advancing in his career. In some ways I think he is happy to work from home - it's a lot less stress with the morning/evening juggle and there is time to get a couple of things done around the house if needed (defrost meat for dinner, throw in a load of laundry, etc.). In other ways it is harder because he doesn't get out much and probably ends up working longer hours. I also feel a bit guilty because I have to commute to work which cuts out about 2 hours of my day that I could be online doing work. I get home from picking Cameron up at daycare see DH working away and think, "I should really turn on my computer and get back to the grind." But I just check the Blackberry for anything urgent and turn on my 30 Day Shred. Hey, if I'm healthier then BigFinance gets more work out of me, right?

DH and I are pretty equal when it comes to balancing our work and personal life. I probably take up more on the childcare front but he does a lot more around the house (yard work, maintenance). We split cooking, laundry, grocery shopping and outsource cleaning. I do more errands but that's because I like to get out of the house and spend money :-) I know that many couples find themselves more split on personal vs. work juggle. Oftentimes it is the men who get their careers prioritized and women who end up with the bulk of the personal juggle. I'm sure that if we had changes on the career-front (DH gets a big raise but requires more travel, I get a promotion) then things will have to change. DH always jokes that if I can make enough money he'll be a stay at home dad. The only problem? He thinks that means he can golf every day! He claims that Cameron can just hang out in the golf cart. Sure.

The biggest challenge for us in my climb up the corporate ladder has been living away from family and friends. But given the cost of living in Charlotte right now (and the fact that we bought our house in 2007 - ouch!) it is hard for us to see moving back to Boston. How about the rest of you? Have you made sacrifices for your spouses' career or vice versa? Do you think that one partner has to make sacrifices for the other in order to make raising a family work?

By the way, November is NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month). I can't commit that I will post every day (oops, already missed November 1st!) but I will try to be more frequent than in recent weeks.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Daylight savings success

I haven't decided yet if Fall Back is going to be easier than Spring Forward for Cameron. I know when I was a kid I used to love Daylight Savings in the Fall. Simply put, it allowed me to gain an extra hour of sleep. That made getting to Sunday School a lot easier. Conversely, I hated Spring Forward. Loosing and extra hour of sleep? It took me days to get my equilibrium back. For babies I think that the opposite would be true. Fall Back is harder because they wake up and have to deal with grumpy parents who keep saying, "You know it's only 5 AM, right?" Spring Forward just means parents either have to wake their kids up earlier to keep the same timing or deal with a "later" morning. I guess I'll know for sure in 5 months when it's time to turn the clocks ahead.

Cameron did wonderfully this weekend. I've still been getting up far too early (5 AM) to get her a bottle but she falls right back asleep until 7ish. So on Sunday after her 4 AM bottle I managed to stretch her to 6:30 AM (mentally considering it to be 7:30 AM). Cameron's bed time was a bit earlier than usual but no more than 15 minutes. And to top it all off, she had 2 two hour naps each day over the weekend. Isn't that awesome!?! I love nap consolidation. Of course I kept thinking she would wake up so I wasn't nearly as productive around the house as I could have been. But now that we know, DH is already planning to buy a second rake so I can help him next weekend. I hate raking leaves. It just seems so futile. Especially because only 25% of the leaves are down. Can't we be "that" house that waits until all of the leaves are down and then rake?

In other news Cameron continues to battle a cold. I'm starting to get concerned because it has been weeks and she doesn't seem that much better. She coughs infrequently and has some wheezing in her lungs and a slight runny nose. No fever and she seems to sleep fine at night. Am I crazy? Should I go ahead and bring her in? Figures that our co-pay just went up from $20 to $35. Stupid health insurance.