A New Era

Finally! After weeks and weeks of PER traveling, we’ve hired a regular sitter to help out with Aleksander. Hurrah!!! Today was her first day, and it worked out perfectly.

Aleksander took a crazy long nap – three hours! He woke up just as Kelly arrived. Despite all that sleep, he was very out of sorts. Even his snack didn’t seem to help. So I stayed around for about a half hour. But eventually as he started to get comfortable with Kelly, I was able to slip off into the kitchen. I got things cleaned up and dinner started. Then I made my way down to my office in the basement. For months, it’s been looking like it got hit by some kind of natural disaster. After just a half hour, it already looks so much better. I can’t wait for it to be a productive space again.

The best part of all this was that I could hear Aleksander’s laugh ringing through the house. He obviously got over his crankiness and started bonding with Kelly! The two of them had so much fun playing all kinds of silly games. It almost made me want to go join them … almost 🙂

PER is away again this week. He was gone for seven out of eight weeks in February and March. And now it is about every other week. Every time he goes away, I feel like I hardly get anything done. The house turns to chaos. (Okay, I know I’ve never been the neatest person, but it really is driving me nuts!) I barely got my lesson plans together to teach on Saturday mornings. I’m so behind on my photographs. I have over 600 pictures to go through from the last six weeks! And obviously, I wasn’t doing any blogging. All my efforts go in to Aleksander. And resting up during his nap, so I can make it through the rest of the day. It isn’t that he’s so difficult. Most of the time, he’s great. He plays really well by himself. But of course, I never know when or for how long he’ll do that. And then when he does have a bad day, or if I’m sick, things can spin out of control pretty fast.

I know this is just the first day of our new experiment. But I really think it is going to make a huge difference – the beginning of a new era for me as a mom. Having this break not only gives me a chance to get some things done or take a rest if I need it, but I think it’s really good for Aleksander, too. He has a ball playing with Kelly, and then he gets a mom who’s refreshed and relaxed for the rest of the evening. We’ll see how it goes! Now if only I could figure out how to get more help for PER, so he can doesn’t have to travel so much….

Question: How do you manage to get a break in the day? Or do you at all?!

A Little Pampering

A couple of weeks ago I got a massage. It was wooooooooonderful….

But who can get a massage on a regular basis? It’s just not practical!

Still, I think it’s important to pamper ourselves regularly, even if it’s just something little. I already wrote about my heated neck wrap in one of my first posts. I also have a lovely, lavender-scented eye pillow that I use sometimes if I’m trying to take a nap. It helps block out the light and offer soothing aroma therapy. I often think of enjoying a nice cup of tea while Aleksander takes his nap, but somehow I never seem to end up doing it. Maybe if I unpack my mismatched collection of English teacups….

My latest little treat is a scented body spray a friend of mine gave me for Christmas. I don’t know how many times I’ve purchased these sprays for myself. They usually end up collecting dust in a cabinet under the sink. But this time, I’m inspired to use the heavenly sweet-smelling spray. I put it on every night before I go to bed. Every now and then, the scent wafts up to me, and I just have to smile. It’s amazing how something so simple can feel so good!

Question: What little things do you do to pamper yourself? What things do you wish you did?

Ah, to Sleep!

I really like sleep. And I really like to sleep in.

Enter: Aleksander.

Sleep? … I’m sorry… what is that again???

Okay, I’m not so sleep-deprived anymore. But those first few moths were killer. I never knew babies ate every 2 – 3 hours, even at night! I now know why sleep deprivation is used as a torture device. It really is torturous! As I’ve mentioned before, every meltdown I’ve had since Aleksander was born occurred when I was overtired. I just can’t function when I haven’t had enough sleep. But did I nap when he napped? Of course not! There was too much to do. Or at least I thought there was.

But really – what is more important than taking care of yourself? I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: you can’t take care of anyone else if you don’t take care of yourself.

The next time around (assuming #2 is somewhere in our future), I am going to make sure I nap every day. I’ll do whatever it takes! Sleep when the baby sleeps, get a babysitter to watch the kids while I sleep, nap when my husband gets home from work. I’ll do anything! A mere 20 or 30 minutes can work miracles.

As for now, I try to at least relax during one (or sometimes both) of Aleksander’s naps. I also try to get to bed at a reasonable hour. Both of these points are especially important for me when PER is traveling, and I’m on 24/7 baby duty.

The other night I stayed up several hours past my usual bedtime. (Why? Well, I was working on my blog, of course!) Even as I was doing it, I knew it was a bad idea. But I kept writing anyway. By the time I was finished, my eyes were so bleary, I could hardly read the text on my screen. Was my blog even making any sense? Too tired to tell.

The next morning, I almost felt hungover (not that I really remember what that feels like!). Ugh!! Why did I do it? What was I thinking?! As inspired as I am to keep writing for this blog, it really wasn’t worth it. I could have easily written that entry the next day. As it was, I was too tired to get much of anything done the next day anyway.

Another lesson learned: I will get to bed at a reasonable hour!!

Question: Do you get enough sleep? Do you nap during the day?