Plomin Family Bragablog

April 29, 2009

In other news…

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 1:38 pm
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Karol has started to declare her love for things.  This morning she was saying “I luh shasmpkey.” (I love Shamsky).  For those that don’t know, “Shamsky” is her stuffed dog, named after Robert’s dog from Everybody Loves Raymond.  Karol sleeps with this and her ‘doggie,’ which you probably remember was her Halloween costume last year.  It now acts as a lovey.  Anyway, Shamsky looks like this:

 

Shamsky Look-Alike

Shamsky Look-Alike

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It’s Potty Time!!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 4:00 am
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So, apparently Karol decided Matt and I weren’t potty training her fast enough, so she’s begun potty training herself.  A little while ago I wrote about the timing and method of potty training we were going to use, and we had pretty much resolved to only ‘passively’ train her for now.  She’s only 20 months, after all!  So we got her a couple of DVDs – the Baby Signs potty training DVD – a format she’s already familiar with – and Elmo’s Potty Time.  I figure if she’s got to be in love with Elmo, he’s going to be useful. 

We’ve just got the TV up and running at the new apartment, and so before bed yesterday Karol got to watch the Elmo DVD again.  Today on the way back from Lori’s, Karol gestured to her diaper.  I asked her if she wanted a new diaper, or if she wanted to go to the potty.  She nodded at both suggestions.  We got in a few minutes later, and Karol went straight to the bathroom, lifted the lid, and asked me to help her with the rest!  So I got her shorts and diaper off and let her sit on her potty herself.  I didn’t really expect anything, but when she got up a couple minutes later, there was pee pee in the potty!  Of course, I flipped out.  We had to make a big deal about it, but Karol was surprisingly calm about the whole thing. 

So, I don’t think this is a miracle; we’ll still have a lot of work to do, but I guess Karol’s telling us we need to step it up on moving forward with the potty training.

April 28, 2009

It’s been too long!

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 5:52 pm

As you can imagine, our lives have been hectic with moving, not to mention Matt’s upcoming finals and trip to Turkey and my Army ATX (Annual Training Exercise: 5 days ‘in the field’).  Luckily, though, I’ve managed to snap a few pics and video to share with everyone.  

Here’s a video.  It’s a little bit of Karol, a little bit of Patrick, and a little bit of the messy, messy, mid-move apartment.  It’s more organized now, I swear.

And the kid’s room.

And here are a few photos.

April 17, 2009

Home-Schooling

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 5:53 pm
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It seems from the 2,873,401 books I’ve read about parenting, creating great kids is 50% good parenting, 50% good schools, and 2% luck.  I think we’re okay on the parenting, but I still worry about schools (and I’ve got 3 years til Karol even starts!).  That’s where kids get bullied, learn about sex (the wrong way), and spend 7 hours a day with a teacher whose  attention is split at least 20 ways.

When I was working on Tom Dermody’s campaign in Northern Indiana (2006), I met the most amazing woman.  She was a farmer’s wife who home-schooled her two children.  I know that description probably conjures up this image:

American Gothic

But this family was nothing like it.

A five minute conversation with her made it evident that this was an intelligent, grounded, and practical woman, and her children seemed to share those same qualities (Interesting note: attending the town-hall meeting we hosted was a part of their curriculum).  I have no doubt that if she’d chosen a different path she could have been CEO of a major company by now, and I got the inkling that’s the sort of success she hopes her children achieve.

Ever since meeting this lady and her great – not socially inept – kids, I’ve seriously considered home-schooling as an option for my family.  

Having spent a few months as ‘stay-at-home-mom’ during maternity leave, however, I really don’t know how I would do it.  It seems like I’m actually able to accomplish more with my kids, spend more quality time with them, when I’m working.  On top of that, I see the obvious benefits they are getting from their current care situation – the perfect amount/level of socialization, exposure to another parenting style, learning that caters to and stretches their abilities, and a ‘home away from home’ that they are completely comfortable in.  

Matt and I have pretty much decided that a Catholic Montessori school is the right fit for our kids’ formal education, if we are lucky enough to find one (if we re-locate to Chicago, for example, it shouldn’t be hard).  But if we can’t, the idea of home-schooling always creeps up in the back of my mind.  

Here’s the thing: I don’t doubt that I would do a decent job at it, but I would want to do an awesome job at it.  If I’m with them 24/7 I know I won’t be able to do that and I’ll beat myself up over it.

The other thing is, how would I go about doing it?  What would the structure be?  What if I have kids at varied stages of learning?  When do I quit working to focus on educating full-time?  Do I quit completely, or work part-time?  How will my kids make friends?  

So, friends and family, what do you think?  Any experience in this arena?  Any new ideas I may not have thought of?  Please comment if so!

April 16, 2009

My Hubs is Amazing

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 5:37 pm
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I have to take a moment to give major credit to my wonderful husband Matt.  He has done at least 80% of all the packing, and is doing almost all the moving (hopefully) in one day today.  This is of course in addition to doing great in his schoolwork and being the best dad Karol and Patrick could ever hope for.  If you need further evidence of Matt’s daddy skills, just ask Karol.  This morning when I was getting her dressed, Matt walked in and she said “Yay, Daddy!” and insisted on him holding her before she put pants on.

The Count-Down Is Over

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 3:07 am
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Here are some pics of our apartment.  Next time you see our stuff it’ll be in Arlington!

April 15, 2009

The Family Bed

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 11:10 pm
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So this morning Matt had to be in downtown DC by 8 am.  We normally leave around then, so I told him to have fun taking the train!  I was extra tired because we went to bed late last night – we’re still boxing stuff up for tomorrow – and so when Patrick woke me up at 4:47 am, I was not really ready to move. I got him settled back to sleep and thought, I should just stay up and get some work done…What am I saying?  I only went to bed 4 hours ago!  So I curled back up with Matt, who, by the way, totally slept through Patrick’s little episode.  

At 5:42, Patty-poo stirred again.  He’s  way into sleeping and gets so frustrated when his little hands wake him up!  He refuses to even open his eyes, just struggles to go back to sleep.  This time I again thought I should get up; after all, my alarm was going to start at 6, but instead I just brought Patrick to bed with me (he’s been doing very well in his pack ‘n’ play recently though).

As Patrick and I snuggled up, I realized that Patrick wasn’t trying to wake me up.  He remembered Daddy had to leave early today!  So I woke Matt up and said something like ‘hey you should hop in the shower now, you have to leave early.’  He didn’t quite hop out of bed just then, though.  

Lucky for him, Karol woke up just after 6 and Matt went to go check on her.  She wasn’t ready to wake up (thank God) and so he brought her to bed too!  So the whole family of 4 was cozied up in bed together.  As soon as she was out again, Matt got up the will to go get ready, but I didn’t.  I decided since I wasn’t responsible for Matt getting in on time, we were going to sleep in!  And we did.  Matt did get out on time, I think, but not before snapping this photo:

The rest of us rolled out of bed around 7:45 and got out the door around 8:30 (not too terribly late, actually).  Sure, I was a little late to work, but no one noticed/cared.  The whole office is late and usually I’m actually there 1/2 hour before we’re open for business.  I figure being a punctuality rock star 80% of the time makes up for a day here and there of taking it slow.  

But after TOMORROW we will have a whole extra hour in the morning since our commute is gone!  We Matt is moving the vast majority of our stuff tomorrow in a U-Haul and then we’ll officially be Virginians!  We have the Silver Spring apartment until the end of the month, so we have plenty of time to clean and get the little things to the new place.  I CAN’T WAIT!!!

April 10, 2009

Tummy Time

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Oh my, there’s so much to report this week!  Let me run down the list:

1.  Patrick didn’t poop for about 4 or 5 days over the weekend.  Lori and I were beginning to get concerned, but I figured as long as it looked healthy when it did come out, it’s probably okay.  He still wasn’t pooping, but he kept getting gassier and gassier and gassier!  Tuesday night I said to Matt, ‘Man this kid really stinks!  He must have finally pooped.’ But no.  No poop!  Finally, Wednesday morning he let it all go.  Lovely mustard-colored poop was overflowing Patrick’s diaper (and they hold a lot), onto his outfit, my shirt, his sheets, his sock…needless to say, it was a mess.  I was happy, however, that it finally came out.  I wondered if it would be another 4 or 5 days before he pooped again.  When I picked the kids up from Lori’s Wednesday night, I found out that a second, equally explosive episode had occurred just minutes after I told Lori he’d finally pooped the big one.  He seems to be back to normal now though.

2.  Karol is learning things faster than we can keep up.  She says all kinds of words now, way too many to list.  And she’s starting to make 2-word sentences.  Some favorites are “Elmo diaper,” “Mom and Dad,” and “letter (whatever letter).”  She’s getting really good at recognizing the letters of the alphabet and can say pretty much all of them.  I didn’t expect that to happen until later, but then again I have no previous example to compare her to.

3.  Yesterday (Thursday) night we had a package opening party.  We’d gotten a box from Aunt Carol, a package from Aunt Dine, and some stuff I ordered online.  Even though two of the three had been here for days we didn’t have time to open them!  Or maybe we just weren’t thinking about it.  Anyway, we decided to make an event of it.  Karol has a truckload of new books, which is GREAT because she’s kind of ‘over’ the board books that we have.  She got some new Dr. Seuss, ALWAYS a favorite in our house, and a whole collection of books about a DOG named Biscuit!  Naturally, we had to read a couple of those right away.  Both Karol and Patrick got some awesome new clothes, too.  Luckily Patrick isn’t too big for them!  He’s wearing a lot of 6-month stuff right now, and I’m gradually weeding out the 3 month clothes as he outgrows them.  The clothes he got were 6 month but they look like they might actually fit him around 6 months, because I think they’re a little bigger than the average 6 month size clothes (thank goodness!)

3.  Patrick found his hands about a week and a half ago, and they’ve been entertaining him ever since.  And just within the past couple of days I’ve been able to get him to laugh.  He has to be in the right mood, though.  He’s starting to get really interested in the kinds of toys you hang above him that he can bat at with his hands.  He also has a little horsey/silky-smoothy thing that he likes to shake and suck on.  I want to get him one of those gym play-mat things this weekend, but we’ll see.

4.  We are finally moving to Arlington in five days!!!  It seems like it’s taken forever to get here, and yet I can’t believe it’s actually happening either.  It hasn’t really sunk in yet, I guess.  I am really worried about how Karol will handle it.  I’ve kind of explained it to her, but I don’t think she will understand until she can see it.  I want to take her to the new apartment on Saturday just to play a little bit, but I doubt it will be open.  Maybe I’ll take some time Monday for that.

5.  This is the last week of the sixth class I’ve taken in my master’s program, I’m almost half-way through 🙂

6.  And lastly, I made a little video of Patrick and Karol enjoying some tummy time together. Here it is!

April 2, 2009

An Update

 

Karol is trying to make Patrick as addicted to the pacifier as she is.

Karol is trying to make Patrick as addicted to the pacifier as she is.

There really isn’t much to report right now, as everything is still very much in a state of flux. We’re waiting to move, struggling through our classes, and lovin’ our babies as much as we can.  

 

Karol seems to be reaching a ‘mommy-itis’ stage (missing mommy/separation anxiety, or, inflammation of the mommy…it works either way).  It breaks my heart if she gets upset when I leave but it’s a real boost to my maternal ego when she reaches her little hands up, wanting to be held.  How can you say no to that?

Patrick is just as content as ever.  He’s really strong, sometimes to his disadvantage!  When I rock him, he’s so tall that if he starts kicking his chubby little legs, he ends up basically standing on my lap.  I have to stand up in order to bounce him.  I’ve started reading Raising Boys and I’ll probably finish it in no time.  I have a pretty good grasp on what little girls are like (I have first hand experience, in fact), but I wanted some insight on what it means to be a little boy.  So far it’s a pretty fascinating read.

Matt is gearing up for his school trip to Turkey (yikes!) which is over the same time frame I’m supposed to have my ATX (double yikes!).  Next week is the last week of my current class, and Matt have FOUR exams on Monday!  Wish him luck 😉

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