It Flies By

Oh my goodness, the weeks are going faster since coming back to work than I was afraid they would!  Our little guy is growing so fast!  He’s such a chunk of love.  Isaiah is such a happy, easy-going baby!  Hard to believe he’s 3 1/2 months now.  He just smiles and coos and babbles.  Such a talker!  Last night he almost rolled over from his back to his tummy.  I’m going to have to start putting the side of his co-sleeper up so he won’t accidentally roll out.

Davie Ann is deep into a princess/ballerina phase.  She LOVES tiaras and poufy dresses and anything sparkly.  Lip gloss is her favoritest evah.  We have to take her purse of pretend make-up with us wherever we go.  Most nights she even sleeps in her poufy dresses.  It’s not worth the drama of getting her out of them!  I don’t know how my mom manages to convince her to change her clothes for school.

I’m finally back to couponing.  I love it, but it’s time-consuming and snuggling with the kiddos was just way more fun. 🙂  So far I’ve gotten a bunch of great freebies and deals.  My favorite so far have been:  45 free P3 protein packs, 30 free PopSecret single bags of popcorn, $0.50 bags of Nabisco snacks (the tall snack bags that are usually $2 of animal crackers, chocolate chip cookies and Nutter Butters), and three cannisters of Enfamil that are usually $24 each for $16 each.  I’m hoping to score some free toothpate, mouth wash, deodorant and shampoo this week.  Some deals work out, some don’t, so we’ll see how it goes!

Troy and I are still committed to our Dave Ramsey Financial Peace class at church every Sunday.  The steps are hard, and making the required changes are hard, but we’re slowly doing it.  I think we’ll probably have to take the class a few times before we really get the hang of it.  But we are determined!  It all seems so ‘common sense’ but I know I learn something new every week.  I’m addicted to the Dave Ramsey podcast and radio show now.  I downloaded the app so I can stream the radio show during my commute.

I love music, but podcasts are my thing now.  I almost always listen to one in the car.  My favorites are Doug Loves Movies (a stoner comedian who plays celebrity and movie trivia games with other comedians and celebs – sooo funny), Hollywood Babble-On and Smodcast (both with director Kevin Smith), the Dave Ramsey podcast, the Nerdist podcast with Chris Hardwick and AfterBuzz TV.  AfterBuzz TV does a review of just about any TV show you can think of, but I just listen to the ones for the shows I watch, usually The Walking Dead, Helix, The Bachelor and Lost Girl.  It’s fun to listen to other fans geek out over the same shows I like. 🙂 

With all the kids and all the couponing lately, I haven’t had any time to work on wreaths.  I miss my creative outlet!  Hopefully I’ll be able to get back to it soon.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone!  Tonight we’re having red potatoes, carrots and corned beef roast.  I hope it turns out!

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It Flew By …

It’s a shock that maternity leave is over and I’m back at work.  I don’t know how it happened so fast.  I know why I’ve neglected this space – I’ve been under a spell cast by this guy:

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We had a wonderful time with my family over the Christmas holidays.  We spent a lot of time with my folks and my brother and his family.  Troy had to work quite a bit so we weren’t able to be together as a family as much as we would’ve liked.  Davie discovered she LOVES to open presents.  It doesn’t matter what the present is, she just loves opening them.

Troy’s family couldn’t come – in fact, we haven’t seen them since the day Isaiah was born.  Troy’s mom Marilyn married a year after we did.  Her husband has two adult twin daughters, one who lives with them (both are single).  Both of the girls have been in and out of the hospital through the holidays and one is still in.  We tried to go see them twice but both times they called and cancelled.  I know it’s been a really stressful time for them but I hate it that Marilyn is missing out on Isaiah.  Troy is her only child and Davie and Izzy are her only grandchildren.  We’re hoping everyone’s health improves and we’ll all be able to get together soon!

Maternity leave was a dream.  Days flew by – Isaiah and I would get up in the morning and nurse, and I would smell his head while he slept on my chest, and somehow it would suddenly be two in the afternoon.  I cooked every dinner, had a clean house and all the laundry caught up.  I even caught up a bit on the DVR!  Isaiah seems to like the Property Brothers  but he sleeps through Lost Girl and Supernatural.  He’s not a fantasy/sci-fi guy yet, I guess. 🙂

I got all kinds of crafty during leave.  Mom and I started making wreaths with geo mesh.  It’s so fun!  I LOVE having a creative outlet.  I even gave up couponing for the whole two months!  It was so much more fun to snuggle with my Squishy and be artistic.  I could really get used to being a stay-at-home mom, if only we could afford it.

Davie is adjusting pretty well.  She adores Izzy and loves all over him – then she gets bored and wants to put him away in the toy box.  She’s still a baby herself and needs some good one-on-one time with each of us every day.  It seems impossible she will be three in just a few weeks!  She seems so smart and grown-up already.  We are working hard on potty-training.  She loves to go potty, but then she’ll get into playing and forget to tell us she needs to go.  So for now, we’re still using Pull-Ups but we’ve got to have her completely trained by the start of the school year in August.  It’s a requirement for the 3-year-old class.

Coming  back to work was easier this time since my folks are just 15 minutes away from our house and they are watching Isaiah and Davie.  Still, I have weepy days where I can barely bear to leave him.  Especially since he will most likely be our last, which is a whole other (debatable) topic.  It helps getting texts and pics from mom during the day.

Breastfeeding has been so much easier this time.  With Davie, I had a vaginal birth, but it took 10 days for my milk to come in.  I pumped constantly and we used the PSS system and tried everything, but I dried up at four months.  This time, even though I had a c-section, I had milk the day he was born!  Of course we supplement and the majority of his intake is formula, but he loves the boobie and I love the bonding time.  I’m so grateful it’s been so much easier this go ’round.

As a family, we seem to be falling into a new routine.  As long as I have lunches made and clothes laid out for everyone and we all get baths the night before, mornings seem to go smoothly.  I get up, nurse Isaiah, then get ready for work and get Izzy changed, dressed and in his carrier.  Troy gets ready and dresses Davie in the clothes I’ve laid out, then he takes the kids to my folks’.  I pick them up after work, start dinner, and get their bags re-stocked for the next day, lay out clothes and pack lunches.  When Troy gets home he helps me finish dinner and clean up.  Then the kids get baths and sometimes we do, too.

The only bad thing about routine is that it makes the days fly by so fast!  Davie and Isaiah are just so cute and fastinating and wonderful.  I want these days to last.

38 Weeks

Yesterday I went to see Dr. Breen for my 38 week appointment.

I have to admit, as nostalgic as I’ve been about the end of this pregnancy, the side effects are finally getting to me.  I haven’t been in charge of my right arm in almost a month.  I don’t remember the last time I slept more than an hour at a stretch.  I’d love to eat dinner – and not have to burp it up for the next twelve hours.  I’m about ready to put in an eviction notice. 🙂

But – still no signs whatsoever of labor.  The baby is still floating freely (not engaged in the birth canal) and there is no dilation or effacement.  I had thought the plan was that if I wasn’t showing signs of labor by now, we were going to plan a c-section.  But I think we might be victims of Dr. Breen’s holiday plans.  He has decided to give me until Wednesday, Dec. 4th to see what happens.  It just so happens, he is out of town starting tomorrow until Sunday.  Coincidence…?  Hmm.

But that’s ok.  If there’s still any chance I can have him vaginally, I’ll take it!  Dr. Breen has discussed my case with all of his colleagues.  If I go into labor before next Wednesday, I’m to go to the hospital immediately and they will re-assess at that time if I can try vaginally or if they should go straight to c-section.  They have decided that they will not try any interventions – no vacuum, no forceps.  If he doesn’t slide out on his own, it’s back to c-section.

So, if I don’t go into labor today, I definitely don’t want to before next Sunday when Dr. Breen is back!  If I go in Wednesday the 4th and show no signs of labor, the c-section will probably be Friday the 6th or Monday the 9th.  The baby’s due date is Dec. 8th, so that’s just about right.  Once next Wednesday rolls around, it’s really like the clock is off.  Since there’s no chance of a vaginal delivery after that, we might as well let him cook ’til he’s ready.

So that’s where we’re at with the pregnancy!  I think we’ve got everything else ready.  The house has been scrubbed top to bottom.  the car seat is adjusted to newborn and the bases are installed in the cars.  Troy, the baby and I all have bags packed.  There’s a plan in place for Davie.  Last Saturday mom and I went to Target and bought enough groceries for a week’s worth of meals, Thanksgiving dinner for the whole family, and a big snack bag for Troy and I to take to the hospital when I’m in labor.  With coupons and deals, I saved $105! 🙂  I think I could’ve saved more if I had gone to Walmart and HEB and gotten some things there, but I knew I didn’t have the energy for it, so spending a little more to get everything in one place was worth it.  Plus, we got an extra turkey at $0.50/lb for Christmas.  So we’re ahead of the game!

Saturday evening Troy, Davie, mom, dad and I put up our tree and decorated the house for Christmas.  It finally got cold here in Austin – down to the 30’s at night! – and it felt so Christmasy! 🙂  We even lit a fire in the fireplace.  The house seems so warm and cozy!  I just love it!  I made potato soup one night and chicken & dumplings the next. 

Mom came back Sunday to help me finish.  We also wrapped all the presents I have bought so far and gathered up all the props I’d like to use for newborn pics of Isaiah and Christmas pics with Davie and Isaiah together.  It’s so good to have everything done!  I couldn’t have done it without my folks.

I don’t know why it’s still so hard to call the baby by his name.  I guess it’s the infertile in me, terrified that if I give him a name he won’t come to be.  Even now, on the verge of his birth, I know the risks, the chances that things may not turn out the way we plan or hope.  I’m trusting in my doctors, trusting in the Lord, but I still get scared.  Oh Lord, please help my faith grow strong.  Please bring my son, your creation, safely into this world.  Thank you for the time we have had together.  It is so precious.  Amen.

 

37 Weeks

I turned 37 weeks at some point this week.  I used to think it was every Tuesday but now I think they’re changing it every Sunday.  Who knows, at this point?  ‘Almost to goal’ is how I like to look at it. 🙂

Honestly, despite a few side effects, I really wouldn’t mind being pregnant at this point if I could just stay home and enjoy it.  It’s the trying to work full-time while 37 weeks pregnant that is about to do me in. 

Insomnia and difficulty sleeping is probably the hardest part.  Not only is it hard to get comfortable, but when I finally drift off, I’ll have crazy dreams, or have to pee, or get too hot, or my hand and arm will start to hurt.  I sleep deepest and best from about 4am to 9am, but of course, I get up at 5:30 every day.  So not a lot of great deep sleep going on.

The numbness and shooting pains in my right arm have gotten worse (similar to carpal tunnel symptoms, I think).  It’s hard to type or write or put on my bra or do my hair in the mornings.  Even when everything is loosened up I still can’t clench it in a tight fist.  All that will go away after the birth, though. 

Last week at my 36 week appointment with the perinatologist they did the Estimation of Fetal Weight ultrasound.  Yesterday at my 37 week OB appointment, Dr. Breen went over the results with me.  He came into the exam room asking, “Are you eating Miracle Grow?  If so, it’s time to stop that!  I saw your estimation of fetal weight report and thought, Holy Toledo!  That’s one big baby!”  He did a cervical check and determined that there is nothing going on – my cervix is closed, and although the baby is in the right position, he’s still floating freely (not engaged in the pelvis).  So basically, no signs of labor at this point.

We began to discuss options.  Dr. Breen feels that if I go into labor in the next week to week and a half on my own, it’ll be safe to deliver vaginally.  He says that experience and research has shown that it’s not wise to induce before 39 weeks unless the body is already showing signs of labor progress or medical necessity.  I’ve read the same and appreciate that he started right out acknowledging that!  (With Davie, we induced at 38 weeks, but I was already effaced and had high blood pressue issues.) 

However, once we get to 39 weeks, if I have shown no signs of labor, he will schedule a c-section.  The risks to the baby are just too great.  We could assume the estimation of fetal weight is off by as much as 10%, but that’s only 5 oz either way.  And he’ll continue to grow over the next three weeks, and will stay in the 90th plus percentile for growth.  There’s the fear of shoulder distocia, broken collarbone, or of tearing the nerves that run from the head down the neck (causing life-long arm and upper body weakness).  Dr. Breen stated that the worst case scenario would be if I was able to deliver the baby’s head, but couldn’t get the shoulders out, so they would have to do an emergency c-section and force the head back up through the vaginal canal, compressing the bones of the skull.  Of course, I want to avoid any danger to the baby.

So for now, I’m praying that God’s timing will be for me to go into labor in the next week to week and a half.  With my first delivery, I was so scared, but it turned out to be such an amazing experience!  With all my heart, I am really looking forward to another vaginal delivery – one I can experience without being afraid!  This time I know I can do it, and I know what to expect, and I trust that the epidural will work, and I know what to expect from Dr. Breen.  I hate to be facing a c-section, which means being terrified again!  But of course, I will choose the safest option for the baby.  Say a prayer for us that this will be our week!

Over the years, I’ve read about so many benefits of vaginal delivery over c-section, both for the baby and for the mom.  The baby gets immunities, hormones and a good squee-geeing out as it passes through the tight canal.  The mom’s body prepares for the exit of the pregnancy, and makes the hormones to start milk production.  I worked so hard to breast feed Davie, and it would be such a blessing to get to try again with this baby.  I feel like a c-section will just delay getting a good start on that.

On a positive note, I finally got the nesting bug!  Troy and I worked our butts of on Sunday, and got 2/3rds of the house done.  We got back to it Wednesday afternoon, and now we’re all done!  We even got the baby seat and bases out of the garage.  Bathrooms are scrubbed spotless.  All floors are scrubbed, and the carpets shampooed.  We even did the baseboards and the windows!  It shocked us how nasty it was under the couch, ugh.  It feels so good to have it all done!

This Saturday I’m going to meet my mom at Target and we’re going to get all the Thanksgiving dinner shopping done.  I’m also going to get a bunch of snacks to take to the hospital for while I’m in labor.  After that, my dad will meet us at our house, and they’re going to help us get out the Christmas tree and decorate for Christmas.  Once that’s done, I think I’m ready to meet this baby!

36 Weeks

Four weeks to go.  Just a month!  It still seems unreal that another human being will be part of our family in a month.  Strange to be here … the end always seemed so far away, and still does, really.

I had my regular OB appointment with Dr. Breen on Monday.  Everything looks fine with the baby, and there are no signs of impending labor.  I’m fine with that.  Although I am truly starting to feel uncomfortable, I want to savor every last minute.  I want him to be fully ready to be born.  And for selfish reasons, it would be great to get a couple more paychecks and paid-time-off in the banks.

After I saw Dr. Breen, I went to the perinatologist for an Estimation of Fetal Weight ultrasound.  It was fun to see the baby again.  I can’t feel him as much now, his movements are smaller and seem less frequent.  I’m sure it’s just because he’s squished in there.  But looking at him on the screen, it looked like he was all over the place!  They estimated his weight to be 8lbs, 8oz, but that’s just an estimate.  I think he’s doing just fine and I’m still hoping my body starts labor on it’s own.  I was induced with Davie Ann, and I had a wonderful birth experience.  I’d just like to have the experience of going into labor for the experience of it – with plenty of time to get to the hospital and get an epidural before it really hurts, of course. 😉

Financially, it’s starting to seem all too real.  Each month gets a little tighter.  First, I stopped working my part-time job in May.  Then I started having to take unpaid FMLA days during the worst of the hyperemesis.  We began to run up credit cards and watched our savings dwindle.  It’s going to be a lean Christmas.  I’ve got Davie all taken care of, but I still need to buy for my nieces and nephews.  I’ll be on 66% salary for 8 weeks after the baby is born (short term disability), so we’re just going to have to be more careful than ever.  Troy has been taking overtime shifts whenever he can, but his job doesn’t offer it very often.  But every little bit helps.

Davie’s surgery went really well.  It was so fast!  It seemed almost as fast as they took her back to surgery they were carrying her into us in the recovery room.  She was a little fussy the next two days, but as long as we gave her children’s Motrin she would bounce right back to her happy self.  So far, knock on wood, there have been no colds or infections. 

This weekend we will get our maternity pictures done!  I’m hopeful everything will turn out all right this time.  It was so heartbreaking to lose out on all of our maternity pictures from my pregnancy with Davie.  We had a private photographer come to the house who was advertising with our local “mom’s group.”  She had a huge story about losing an infant son to a horrible heart defect (Tetralogy of Fallot), and how in the years since she had turned to maternity and infant photography as a comfort.  We paid her and she came out and took pictures – and disappeared.  She stayed in touch by email, so I thought the pictures were coming, and didn’t know to get them re-done.  We didn’t realize we’d been had until after Davie was born and it was too late.  Now I only have 5 or 6 pictures of myself pregnant with her.  It was such a horrible heartbreak to lose those memories – but even more heartbreaking that she used the tragic death of her son to swindle people.

But now, we’ll get to try again with Davie IN the pictures!  We’re going to wear the same clothes we wore for Davie’s maternity pictures, but this time we’re getting them done at Penney’s.  I hope Davie behaves and they turn out!

Our second big goal this weekend is to get all the carpets shampooed.  I can’t wait to get it done – because the following weekend we’re going to decorate for Christmas!  I’m so excited!  I LOVE Christmas decorations.  They’re so warm and inviting.  I know it’s early, but I really wanted to get it done before the baby comes.  I want to use some of the decorations as props in his newborn photos, so it’ll be good to get everything out. 

I need to download pics from my phone.  I’ll try to post some tonight.  I have the cutest little video of Davie singing her two favorite songs, “I Have A Little Turtle” and “ABC”.  Of course, she’s mostly nekkid in it, but that seems to be her natural state. 🙂  Oh!  We’ve had two successful pees in the potty!  I’m hoping she’s really starting to get interested in it!

35 Weeks

Tomorrow will be 35 weeks.  But tomorrow Davie Ann gets tubes in her ears, so I think that will trump any incubation news.

Not much new to report on that front, anyways.  His movements are smaller (must be getting crowded in there), but reassuringly regular.  Sleep has gotten more difficult – it’s almost exhausting trying to sleep.  I can only lie on my side, and my hips and lower back give me at most two hours before the pain wakes me up and I begin the arduous process of rolling over.  My bladder is the same – I get about two hours at a time before I have to go again – but it’s not necessarily synched up with the hip/back pain.  That would be way too convenient.  I’ve also picked up a symptom I had with Davie – my fingers, hands, wrists and sometimes my whole arm will go numb.  Usually the arm I’m lying on when I’m on my side.  That wakes me up pretty quickly.  It’s weird to wake up and not be able to use my fingers for a minute or two.

If all that wasn’t enough to keep me awake, pregnancy-induced insomnia has made for some interesting late night moments.  It’s so strange to wake up at 2am and not be able to fall back asleep for an hour or two.  My mind is tired, but it’s busy.  My body is exhausted, but twitchy and achy.  Usually a hot bath helps a lot.

But all of this is temporary, passing, and insignificant.  Despite the symptoms and all appearances, it doesn’t seem real that I’m growing a human being.  You’d think since we have a daughter I’d be able to wrap my mind around it all.  But it still doesn’t seem like there will be another person in our home at the end of this.  How could we be that lucky, that blessed?  Who are we to have our prayers answered – not once, but twice? 

In these final weeks, I’m feeling more emotion, more nostalgia.  I’m not afraid like I was with Davie.  I feel the reassurance of his movements, I know what the aches and pains are, so I’m not scared every day that he’s gone.  Even with the discomforts I’m enjoying being pregnant.  Being capable of being pregnant.  I am lucky.

And there is the knowledge that this is the last time.  I’ll never be pregnant again.  I’ll never feel life move inside me.  I’ll never carry my baby around with me everywhere I go.  In less than two months, we’ll be two separate beings forever.  I’ll never be so completely enmeshed in another again.

There are so many reasons I’ll never be pregnant again.  This pregnancy was brutal for a long time.  The hyperemesis gravidarum is hard to explain … it consumed my entire being, physically and mentally.  It was hard on my family, my husband and my daughter.  To be pregnant again would mean leaving this baby behind, too.  It wreaked havoc on my work relationships and our finances.  Not to mention the obvious – I’m already 42.  If I get to breast feed, it’ll be at least a year before we can try again, and it took us 3 1/2 years to get Davie and another 2 years for this one.  I don’t know if this old body can handle a pregnancy at 44 or 45!  And even if we were lucky – how frickin’ old will I be when that last kid graduates?!? 

Not to mention, our fertility insurance coverage is all gone.  Only … suddenly, it’s back.  Troy’s insurance is making another global policy change, from United to a version of BCBS, so everyone starts over from scratch.  It’s not as great – it’s a lifetime maximum of $15,000.  Just one try for us.  With ICSI, a fresh cycle costs us about $12,000 a pop.  And with eggs like mine, it’s unlikely we would produce a viable fetus. 

But it does put embryo donation back on the table.  I like the idea of being to carry our adopted baby.  And we still feel a pull in our hearts toward adoption, although all of our focus was on foster-to-adopt.  But the truth is, it’s rare to be able to adopt an infant through the foster system.  Much more common is heartache and loss.  I understand, I really do, that the true purpose of fostering is to facilitate a reunion between child and parents.  I have to admit, my heart isn’t in that.  I want our child to stay with us forever.  And of course I worry that our extended families may not love and accept our adopted child(ren) as they do our biological ones.

Maybe it’s time to “resolve.”  Time to appreciate the two we are blessed with and not ask for more.  I feel a pull towards that peace.  To know our journey to grow our family is forever complete, to fully revel in what we have, to let go finally of the heartache of the journey (whether through IF treatments or adoption).  I think this is where Troy is, and I want to respect him. 

As this pregnancy draws near to the end, I am so excited to meet this new person who will change our lives.  I can’t imagine ever being as deeply immersed in and in love with another human being as we are with Davie Ann.  I know it all changes when they come, the love grows, it just doesn’t seem imaginable now.  I also find myself grieving the ones we lost along the way.  From our first miscarriage before we got pregnant with Davie ’til this very pregnancy where we lost a twin at 8 weeks – or even the other two embryos that didn’t take at all; whether it simply wasn’t God’s time, or my body failed them, or my eggs were too old … whatever the reason, they were wanted and loved.  I hope they know, I hope they know. 

This is long and rambling with no real resolution.  I think I’m just in a process, evolving.  To the next step, whatever it may be.  And whatever it is, may it bring peace.

Tantrums

I’ve had several people tell me since Davie turned into a toddler that it’s not really the “Terrible Two’s,” it’s the “Terrible Three Tantrums.”  And it seems like Davie Ann is right on schedule.

One minute she is the most adorable, charming, funny person I’ve ever known.  Her logic just cracks us up.  She loves to “perform” and sing for us.  But fail to pick her up at the moment she asks, or say “no” to a popsicle (or “no” to anything), or stop her from doing something she wants to do, and Little Miss Hyde appears.

Oh my gosh, the tantrums are awful.  Screaming, thrashing, just like in the movies.  If she gets mad enough, she will hit or scratch, although that’s rare.  We have set a policy for spanking – we only spank for the three “D’s”:  danger (running towards the road, for example), dishonesty (lying or stealing – she isn’t old enough for these yet) and disrespect.  It’s the last one that’s hardest to judge fairly.  It’s disrespectful for her to hit or scratch us, and that is definitely a spanking offense.  But we don’t want to be spanking her all the time, such as when she fails to share or says “No!” back to us instead of obeying.  I don’t want her to get so used to spankings that they don’t phase her anymore.  Also, it seems hypocritical to tell her “Don’t hit” and then spank her, you know?

I’m not total “spare the rod, spoil the child” but I don’t want her to be frightened of us, either.  How do you engender respect for authority in a child without instilling fear of authority?

And on a more practical note, once she’s in the throes of a tantrum, does anyone have any advice on snapping a toddler out of it?  Most of the time we can make sure she’s safe and then walk away, in order to avoid giving attention to the behavior.  But this morning, for instance, she followed me into the garage where we have a fridge for sodas.  I wanted to pack a caffeine-free Coke in my lunch.  Davie knows we keep the popsicles in the freezer out there and immediately began begging for one.  Not only are they not the preferred breakfast food for choosy moms everywhere, she makes a massive mess with them and I had her dressed for school.  So I had to tell her no, not right now, but she can have one when we get home tonight.  Cue massive tantrum. 

The bad news is – they are building new houses in the neighborhood right behind us, and we’ve been getting little field mice in our garage, so we had set traps.  I know what you’re thinking and you’re right – I never should’ve allowed Davie to follow me into the garage in the first place!  So of course as she thrashed on the floor I was terrified she’s set off a trap and get hurt.  I tried to pick her up but she caught me with a solid kick in my eight-months pregnant belly, knocking the wind out of me.  Fortunately Troy heard us and scooped her up quick.  Three minutes later, she’s perfectly fine and is singing the “Tiny Turtle” song to us.

She’s not always like that, often she is respectful even when she is disappointed.  The tantrums are MUCH more likely to happen if we let her get over-tired or over-stimulated.  And I still think she’s the most perfect, adorable, hilarious person I know.  I just want to raise her to be a kind, respectful young woman!  Any advice is appreciated!

 

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