My Little Mermaid

Do you know that Lorelai means ‘Siren’? Come to think of it, do you know that my daughter’s name is Lorelai? Lol, I’m sure I’ve mentioned it. Anyway, with a name like that, you’ve gotta learn to swim, right?

My mom bought Lola a few private swimming lessons for Christmas. Which, I was all, “Hallelujah, praise Jesus, not another toy to add to the collection closing in around me and making me wonder if I should seek some anti-anxiety meds.” (Though, for the record, Lola was all, “My little brother’s toys and my little cousins’ toys are now going to be appropriated by me because, seriously folks, I’m four years old and have a hard time grasping the awesomeness of the lack of brightly colored plastic.”)

Of course, the toys are all kind of old news now, and only REALLY interesting to her when her brother wants them. But she’s super psyched about the swimming lessons we started yesterday.
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So I had called to set them up, and the teacher who called me back did not instill confidence in me. (Maybe we should have a class in high schools on professional phone etiquette or something?) And then we got there yesterday, and I was informed that she was running a little late. And THIRTY MINUTES LATER, amid a bored and disappointed kid’s very sad “is my swimming teacher gonna be here soon?” I was cursing the YMCA for employing flakey teenagers. When finally, and surprisingly, in walked a totally adult-looking teacher. Who barely acknowledged me and offered almost no word of apology! I was so ready to bail.

And then she revealed herself to be the Kid Whisperer.

Seriously, I guess there’s a reason this woman is employed in this capacity. And it’s not because of her prompt professionalism. She was so calm and quiet and effective with my bean. Lola trusted her really quickly. And she phrased everything in perfect, calm kidspeak. And I sat there feeling like a spazz in my own approach and vowed to try this magical swimming teacher approach.
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Corbin must have been a little jealous. Because when I gave Lola her bath a little later, I was rinsing her shampoo out when he splashed head first into the tub. With a onesie, a sweatsuit, a diaper, and socks on. They’re just inseparable I guess.

On an entirely different note:
Old guys! Seriously! What is with the hard candy!? I know you’re being kind, but I gotta be honest, no one wants to eat whatever just came out of your pocket!

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Okay, maybe ONE thing’s better.

I’ve said it in the past: people tell you that your kids getting older just gets better and better. And I never really believe them. (In fact, I think there are a lot of little lies surrounding parenting that people continually spout hoping they’ll be true.)

Well, yesteray my four year old was my personal lotioner. Yup, I got out of the shower and she put lotion on me while I plucked my eyebrows and put product in my hair and etc. It was kind of awesome! I was running late, so I would have probably skipped lotion otherwise. Now, she has her own methods that are a little …unorthodox. She insisted on lotioning up my belly button pretty well, for instance. But still. Kind of a fun part of the growing kids thing. Now just wait until they’re old enough for my husband and me to go see a movie, and I might just be singing the praises of how much better it is with older kids.

But I doubt it, because I just ran across this picture:
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And about curled up on the floor and cried. Not because I look like that (give me a break, I was minutes out of a med free L&D.) but because I don’t want to be done with that!!!

And since I got an adaptor that allows me to easily put photos on my iPad, here is some more evidence of what a lucky lady I am.
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Random rambling with gazelle like intensity.

Hello to the three of you still reading this blog! I’ve been terrible at saying anything interesting lately. And I never respond to comments because I’m a busy jerk. And I haven’t looked at anyone ELSE’S blog since back in ‘Nam, so I haven’t kept up with my readers and that’s awful. But anyway, for the three of you still reading, just so you know, by the end of February I will probably not own the address stephicakes.com anymore. It’s expiring, and I don’t think I’m going to pay to keep it. But I can still be accessed at stephicakes.wordpress.com 🙂

Why is that? Well, ask this guy!
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Okay, actually, I don’t know that much about Dave Ramsey. All his books were checked out at my library, and I sure don’t intend to PAY to learn how to save money, lol. But I did peruse his website, and it got a fire lit under me to pay off all our debt ASAP, and start saving more. (Gazelle like intensity is a Dave Ramsey thing, by the way.)

Here’s the thing though, I’ve been looking at all kinds of frugal living tips, and reading about these people who paid off $30,000 in seven months. “Stop spending so much on name brand clothes.” “Make your own coffee instead of spending four bucks every day.”

Where’s the Bitch, please emoticon?

Every article of clothing I own is either four or more years old, or was gifted to me by my mom. And if I could afford to drink four dollar coffees daily, I wouldn’t be scouring the net for budget advice! We have been cutting out frivolous spending for so long that there’s not much left to cut. But if any of you can talk my husband into canceling the cable, I will write you a sonnet. 🙂

Lastly, Corbin still doesn’t say any words. Like, not even Dada. Which is a little disconcerting. What he DOES do, however, that is ridiculously adorable is he nods his head emphatically any time you ask him a question. God I wish I could figure out how to post videos! It’s sort of exaggerated and slow, and very very affirmative. And it doesn’t matter what you ask. “Does daddy smell?” “Can you say ‘no’?” “Corbin, could you please unload the dishwasher?”

I ask him questions ALL DAY LONG just because the way he nods his head is so cute!

Oh, BUMmer.

So over the last few weeks I’ve actually had the courage to check out the ol rear view. BAD IDEA! So now I, Cakesy, am going to have to face the truth: I’m pretty sure that I’m showing the beginnings of the dreaded SBS. Sagging Butt Syndrome. No!!! But I’m still young! Excuse me, karma, have I really been that bad?

I am now thinking about body image in general. And specifically MOM body image. On the one hand, I’m wrecked. I’m happy to report that I did a pretty good job of enjoying my fabulous body back when I had it. But if I had known how bad it would get and how quickly, I would’ve appreciated it even more.

Seriously, it’s tip to toe. Of course I am too tired, broke, and busy to do things like use nice hair and skincare products, wax/tweeze/shave as often as I’d like, get regular haircuts, spend an hour with the curling iron, buy stylish and flattering clothes, eat and exercise in a healthful way, etc. Hell lets be real, I don’t even get a chance to put on lotion half the time.

But that’s nothing compared to the big things. I am covered in stretch marks from my breasts to my thighs (I call it my stretch mark minidress). My hormones have betrayed me to the point that I have insurmountable acne (what kind of cruel joke is acne and grey hair at the same time?) The exhaustion combined with the busyness make losing weight so hard, so I have a nice extra layer of flab all over, and while I’m slowly losing a little weight, that flabby layer just isn’t budging. This defies logic. My poor boobs are too sad to speak of. But I think my favorite part might be my protruding hernia and permanently ripped apart ab muscles.

Although, here’s what I can’t get over lately. I am not a great beauty. This is not me whining, or fishing for compliments, or being too down on myself; this is just facts. We can’t all be Salma Hayek. However. It used be that when I put in some effort on the hair/makeup/clothes, I could look in the mirror and feel pretty good. 🙂 so I don’t know if it was the second kid or the 30th birthday that did it to me, but no matter WHAT lately, every time I pass a mirror: fair to middling. Every time.

So that’s weird. It’s weird to think that I’m never again going to be the girl that makes a man’s head turn. Except maybe to think, “Is she talking to herself? Is that dried peanut butter on the back of her sleeve? Didn’t that girl used to be kind of pretty?” Huh, I guess I didn’t realize my level of vanity.

Honestly, I’m a lot more at peace with these things than I ever thought I’d be. I’d really like to lose a bit more weight, because that seems like something that I actually CAN control. But my boobs, they’ve sustained LIFE! Twice. I don’t wanna be too down on em. And the belly flab? Well, it seems to make fun for Corbin. He really likes to grab at it like it’s play doh or something, makes him smile. 🙂 My husband vehemently swears that he thinks I look great. I still feel a little bad for him, boy did he get hoodwinked in this regard, but his always complimentary reaction makes it all a lot less depressing.

And here’s the most important thing: I have a daughter. I don’t want my daughter to grow up thinking that her female body is something to be criticized, loathed, picked apart. I don’t want her to grow up believing that her value is in her physical appearance and that the only appearance that is worthwhile is thin and nubile. She’s already got a good start at healthy body image with Brian for a dad. Now I have to fight my demons and do my part!

But I also have to fight my laziness and do some squats. Seriously.