Mason Lately

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

At two years and a little over a month old, Mason's personality is developing so fast these days. It really wasn't until we went to Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium that I got so excited to see his reactions. I mean, it was fun before, but then for me personally, it was like something beckoned inside of me for me to show him things, show him the world, expose him to new things. One of his friend's had a pool party, and when I took him into the pool, he was all giggles and so excited and so happy. And it gave me all the feels inside. Like, this is what it's all about. This is why God gave him to us, to feel the ultimate joy. And then the other day, we went to take a tour of a gym, and he gets inside, looks around, and keeps saying, "Wow! Wow! Wow!", all amazed at the sheer size of the place. I don't think he's ever been in a place with a ceiling quite that high. 

He's at a curious age, and every time he hears a noise, he asks, "What's that sound?" "Oh, it's a bird." "Oh, it's a plane." "Oh, it's the neighbors doing yard work." "Oh it's kids playing outside." We do this every day, and I'm glad he asks because it's helping him learn so much.

He's still very much into cars. Cars will always make him happy. He still lines them up, and now we keep his cars in a bucket so we can take it everywhere. 

He's quite shy around people, and still hides behind me, but at home, he's talkative, and strong willed, and a load of fun. I'm not sure if this is phase, or if he will grow out of it. Any thoughts appreciated on this one!

Sometimes when he wakes up on the right side of the bed, we will just lay there and stare at each other. It's a little weird, but I love it. I'll smile at him and kiss him and he'll smile back and just stare. In these moments, I wonder what he is thinking. 

Anyways, you must think my child is just perfect. But lo and behold, not the case. He's started to growl and hit. I'm worried since I'm slower these days, and can't get to him as fast. It's typically towards kids his age and when he is defense mode. We have tried to work with him, but I'm really hoping this is a phase that he will grow out of since we do have a lot of friends his age, and they are all so sweet and nice.

My boy's my bud, the apple of my eyes. I just love him, and when I can't fall asleep, I watch him sleep, barely able to tell where his eyes are, but thinking about how big he's gotten, and how much alike we are.


My Village

Thursday, August 25, 2016

A part of me knew that we were not going to be in Georgia forever, but I didn't realize that when I started staying home, we wouldn't be in Georgia. I went to college in Georgia, had family there, and I especially loved my wards there. I thought that when I started staying home, I would have this network of women that I knew, and we'd live happily ever after. 

Well, life has a way of throwing surprises in your life. The truth was that it was a blessing in disguise, although I wasn't sure at first. 

We were actually in another area before we settled here. I was able to get to know two women in our church, and we got together quite often. I knew it was temporary, but I fully embraced having these two women in my life. I needed them more than anything. Since settling here, I haven't seen them as often, but I keep up with them on social media, and try to make time to see them when I am in the area.

When we moved to this area, I was really nervous. At first, it seemed like all the women in our church were really busy with their own lives, or maybe they were all hanging out with each other without me. I wasn't sure. When we moved in, there was an influx of new move-ins, and I soon discovered that us all newbies were in the same boat. We were all trying to figure out the dynamics of our church, and the women. I've since made more friends, and I'm ever so grateful.

Staying at home is isolating. Especially when you're pregnant, and your energy level is a negative 100. I'm so grateful for this group of women, and for their openness, and their love, despite all my imperfections. They have provided so much support, encouragement and love. I'm amazed not only at what they do for their families, but also for the families around them. 

I consider all these women and their families a part of my village. I want to add to my village, because it really does take a village, not only to care for my babies, but also to care for myself because I need it too.

How is your village? 


A Season of Babies

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Looking back in my life, there has been so many seasons. There is the season of late hours writing papers, working on projects with my classmates, giving presentations in class. There is the season of Beta Alpha Psi (accounting fraternity), going to recruiting events, participating in career workshops. There is the season of long, long hours working, learning how to audit, staying up late to cram in CPA studying sessions. There is the season of work trips, teaching staffs, answering client emails.

Then here we are. The season of running around with a toddler, cuddling, kisses on boo-boos. 

There are long days that never seem to end. There are days that we have so much fun, I never want it to end. There are breakdowns in grocery stores. There are days that I smile proudly as he cooperates. No two days are a like, and when I think I have just figured this one out, he changes and I have to learn yet again to change how I approach things with him. 

This is my reality right now. And the realities of many of my girlfriends. And some days, I admit that I look forward to what's next, when he won't be so small anymore, when he will be able to converse with me, when he will be able to take long road trips without tears, when he will start playing sports, and (gasp!) when he gets married. 

And then I think back to all those other seasons before, and how long ago they seem! How short that period was, and how hard some of those experiences were, but yet they passed, and I'm so glad I got to learn from them and grow from them.

This season will pass just as fast as those before, and will I have felt like I have given it all? Will I felt like I enjoyed it enough? There are some regrets for sure during my college years and my working years. There are things I wished I had done, and I wished we had done. And I don't want that for this season. Because though we can do some of those things that we weren't able to do, this little guy of mine (and little girl of mine) will be grown before I blink my eyes. 

Not everyday will be sunshine and butterflies, and not everyday will always be excitement and adventure, but I'm recommitting myself to living with this season. 


3 AM

Monday, August 22, 2016

The sleep insomnia has been so real these last couple of months. I'm not even sure how some days I operate since I typically need a lot of sleep. And it's not like I go to sleep at 9pm either. We've been up until almost midnight, and then I'm still laying there at 1AM, listening to Brandon and Mason breathing, fast asleep. I usually try to count sheeps, but nowadays, that method just leaves my mind wandering to other things. I should get up and read some, but I love the security of having them both close by, and I can hear them stirring and snoring a bit as they change positions. 

Here's to hoping that you got enough sleep last night to tackle this week! 


tacoma, washington

Monday, August 15, 2016

This past weekend, we went up to Tacoma for Brandon's bike ride for cancer. I had contemplated going with him, and was still making up my mind up until the last minute. We had family in town, and a wedding, and it would have simply been easier to just stay home, but Brandon had been out of town a couple of days beforehand, so the thought of running around with Mason for a few more days did not sound very alluring. Not to mention that the temperature around here has been in the 90s! And that is not very fun for a pregnant woman. 

So when Brandon landed, I called him and told him that we are packing our stuff, and coming with him. And I sure am glad that we did since we had a lot of fun. Since his ride was an 85-miler or 100-miler (he ended up doing the 85-miler), I knew it was going to take all day on Saturday so I knew we needed an activity for Mason. I was hesitant being 8 months pregnant and all, and it's hard for me to catch Mason once he runs off, but I had heard great things about Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium

So off we went! And I'm so glad that we did! He loved the aquarium and all the fishes. He would see the larger fishes, and just kept yelling "Big Fish" and then he heard some of the kids saying shark, and he started saying "Shark." And he would just squeal and scream at the fishes. It was so so so fun to experience it through his eyes, and I finally realize why all these other parents are here with their screaming kids. Seeing your kids get excited is so so so worth it! He would walk off by himself from station to station. He wouldn't always go up to the glass to touch it since he was a little scared, and I don't think he fully comprehend that they were behind glass. It was just the cutest thing in the whole wide world. I finally had to wrangle him away so he could have some food before he got too hangry, but I'm sure he would have not minded walking around for another hour or so looking at all the fishes. 

When Mason and I were driving to the zoo & aquarium, we took Ruston Way, and I was driving right beside the water, and saw all these cool restaurants. There was a trail right there beside the water, and there were lots of walkers and runners. There were nice shade around so I knew that we had to come back. 

Apparently, Mason was super terrified of the boardwalk. He was very careful not to walk on the cracks, and then he just was wanting Brandon to hold him. It was funny to see how scared he was. I guess the cracks probably look super big to him, and he probably thought he would have fell right through them. Silly boy!

The weather was warm, but with the breeze from the water, it was spectacular. I just love the water, and the calmness on that day. There were benches along the way, and gosh, how I wished I lived near there. I would come out and walk it everyday. 

He loved climbing on these neat shells. He is such a boy sometimes! I'm excited to see how our little girl will do, and whether she is going to be like her brother.

One of Mason's favorite things to do whenever he is close to water is to throw rocks in the water. He was walking around, trying to find all the rocks that he could so he could toss it in. 

And of course, Daddy gets to carry him back to the car. Did I mention I left the stroller at home? We had to pack Brandon's bike and so although I saw it as we headed out, I figure we would manage. And we did. Although it would be nice to get an umbrella stroller since I left ours with my brother in Wisconsin last summer. 

Anyways, this is our last weekend away from home before the baby. The next several weekends will be preparing for baby, and resting. Thanks for reading!


Things I Loved in July

Monday, August 8, 2016

This month absolutely flew by! Here's a tidbit of what filled my month:

1. 168 hours: You Have More Time Than You Think. I am not even sure how this book came into my possession. Based on the color of the book, I think I picked it up for $1 at a library book sale. I bought it purely for its color. I was organizing the shelves when I realized it was one of the only book in that particular section that I had not read so I decided, why not? I don't know if it's just this time in my life, or if I was remembering how crazy things were right after Mason was born, and Brandon and I were both working, but everything the author said was exactly what I needed. It really made me think about how to organize my day in order to be a better mom and wife, and to utilizing the time that we have when Brandon is home. It's so good, I'm sending it to a friend that I think could really use it. I hope she likes it just as much as I do!

2. The Honest Company Belly Balm. I used this religiously throughout my pregnancy with Mason, and I'm using it this time as well. Not as religiously as I should :) But I'm onto my 2nd tub and I'm hoping for the same results as last time. I absolutely love how rich this balm is.

3. The Honest Company Mineral Sunscreen Stick SPF 30. I bought this in my monthly bundle, and the one off their website is so tiny, but I actually don't mind since it's easier for me to tote around. I have been using only their sunscreen since I'm allergic to quite a lot of other brands, and their brands work well for me. This stick is so much easier, and I love taking it to me to playgroup since it makes it so much easier to quickly apply on Mason.

4. doTERRA petal diffuser. I bought this in the middle of the month, and have been using it nonstop. I knew I wanted to diffuse lavender during labor, and wasn't quite sure about which diffuser to get. This one is a bit pricier, but after reading the reviews, I wanted to try it out. It's the perfect size, and I love that it will automatically turn off after a certain amount of time (based on what you select). I've been diffusing lavender in the evening in our room, and it definitely helps us sleep better!


What We Thought We Knew About Parenting

Monday, August 1, 2016

We were married for a long time before we had Mason, and along the way, we made a lot of friends with a lot of kids. Because we were around so many kids, we really thought we knew it all. Though we loved our friends, we would sometimes have conversations about their parenting styles, and what we would and wouldn't do with our kids. Boy, how we have turned a 180. Mason's totally whooped our butt, and everything we said we wouldn't do, we have done. And everything we said we would do, we haven't really done. So take it from us, and shut your mouth, you people with no kids. You don't know better! Haha!

1. Bathing my kids everyday. I bathe everyday (mostly...) so why shouldn't my kids? They're running around in the yard, in the lake water, on the beach, on the playground, and even around the house. Sweating up a storm, stinky and all. Needless to say, I avert my eyes to this one. Some days, I'm just exhausted. Other days, Mason's exhausted and a bath is just not going to happen. He's not always the most pleasant smelling child, but we are all happy, and that is all that matters. Studies even suggest that bathing kids everyday is not ideal health wise. So, I'm off the hook!

2. No iPhone, iPad, or TV. Who am I kidding? Mason is just now napping because he got so tired of watching YouTube on his iPhone (yes, he has an iPhone - it's my old phone). We've resorted to the iPhone when he's going crazy in the car from a longer road trip, when he can't sleep at night and we are just exhausted, etc. I admit, he gets more screen time than recommended, but hey, he's a pretty bright kid and he gets a good amount of attention from Daddy and Mommy, and lots of outside time with our cousins close by and at playgroup.

3. Speaking Hmong. I quite felt strongly about this. I wanted my child to be fluent in speaking Hmong since he's half Hmong. I felt like all the Hmong parents were doing their children a disservice by not being diligent about teaching their kids Hmong. What are my own plans for teaching Mason Hmong? Zero. Do I still have hopes and dreams of teaching Mason Hmong? Yes! I have no idea how it's going to work out, but I've realized, I'm not a teacher, I don't know how to plan lessons and programs, and I'm okay with my best efforts. As of right now, he knows how to count to 10 in Hmong, and previously, we were learning where his nose, eyes and head was in Hmong, but we've been slacking so I'm not sure if he still remembers.

4. Keeping My Decorating Style. I really felt like my children needed to bend to my will when it came to home decorations. Glass, sharp edges, they'll learn. Or so I told myself. We bought a house last year, and if I didn't have kids, there would be a lot of things that I would have bought or wouldn't have bought. Let's say that we've bended to Mason's will. His little curious fingers are on everything. The first thing he does when he comes into a room is scan the whole room, and he notices everything. Guitars, bugs, shiny objects. He has some sort of magnet that makes him attracted to the things that you don't want him to be attracted to. And I'm okay with that. He's learning, and instead of placing things that would be entice him, I just put these things away, or be okay with his curiosity. I'm okay that my home isn't winning any interior design award. It's working for us, and we're all okay with that.

5. A Clean Home. Ahhhh, the ultimate luxury of a stay at a home mom. The other day we were cleaning and Brandon was complaining about why our house was so dirty. Well, it's dirty because there are people living in it! Messes get made everyday. Some days, I'll bend down and clean it up. Other days, my back kills me, and I don't worry about it. Sometimes, we are in a rush, and we don't pick it up until days later. Well, what about at night after he goes to sleep? You seriously think I'm going to use that time to clean up?!!! Nope. We do our best, and though Brandon wishes we could have a cleaner home, it is pretty darn clean for having a messy toddler. And at the end of the day, I rather spend time with Mason then using that time to clean up after him.

6. Being On Time. I have to admit, this is something I'm consistently working on with no kids. Add in a child, and boy, we are lucky to be within the hour. Are we always late? No, but remembering all of Mason's things and snacks and drinks and cars, that takes time. And of course, who hasn't gotten ready, only to have your child needing a diaper change? Or a break down? Or needing that one toy that is upstairs, under the bed? 

7. Being A Stylish Mom. I've always thought I would be that pulled together mom. Am I? Nope. And I'm honestly okay with that. I don't wear silk. I don't choose a lot of white tops or tops that are intricate. I wear clothes that are comfortable, and I can get dirty because I have a little boy and I rather be happy than stressed out that my clothes are ruined.

I'm constantly learning, and compromising. Marriage itself meant compromising, and adding a kid into the mix meant more compromise. And honestly, I'm more happy than I've ever been. I've learned to live in the moment, to be okay with the messes, that Mason still loves me despite a dirty house. I've also learned that I can't judge anyone else. We all have bad days. We all have hard days. The next time you want to judge a parent, lend a hand instead. There is no perfect parent. We are all just trying our best. And if you don't believe me, you'll get yours!!! (evil laugh). ;)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...