Domestic Engineer

i heard the job title “domestic engineer” on the family feud the other day.  it took me a moment to get it.  looks like everyone has to have a creative title nowadays ;)

i am most familiar with “stay at home mom – SAHM”.  i am also most comfortable using that title.

i have been a SAHM since Maeve was born in april.  chris has been fortunate to take half the year off to be home with us as well so we’ve been a SAHC (stay at home couple) for about 5 months now.

chris is going back to work at the beginning of november.  that will be the OFFICIAL SAHM start date for me.  i know for sure right now that i will not be going back to work at the end of my year off.  working in before and after school daycare just doesn’t make any sense now that we have a child.  we made the decision that i would not be going back to work when Maeve was 12 months, regardless.  for US daycare for our child that is under 18 months was just an idea that we didn’t like. this works for so, so many families, our own extended families and friend’s families included, but we just decided that we wouldn’t send her before 18 months.

we’ve made it a point to talk about about “life after mat-leave” a lot.  time goes on, life changes, ideas change.  we always want to be on the same page, especially with how our life is evolving as a new family.

my husband is great with financial choices and i can’t lie, i directly benefit from this.  i am very fortunate that the choices he and i have made over the years are now working out in amazing ways for Maeve.

i have been a wife for 5 years now and have lived with my husband for 8. i have managed many aspects of our household for years.  i shop, cook, clean, organize, run errands.  i make our home look “pretty” with seasonal decor and lawn and garden maintenance.  my friends call me a “mini martha” hahaha.  i have also struggled in this roll at times.  i have been very sad and depressed at times. i have had seasonal jobs which involve being laid off for months at a time and in those lay offs i have felt like i’m not equal.  truth is i could never be equal to my husband.  his annual salary far surpasses anything i’ve ever made. on top of this i have been physically incapable of maintaining our household during times of recovery (after surgery). all of which has made me feel very lost at times.  like i didn’t have a purpose.  in general, i get S.A.D when the seasons change.  have a history of anxiety and depression.  since having maeve i have had maybe 2 moments of very short lived anxiety.  i have been happy.  it is also summer though so with the season changing to fall now i’ll see how i feel going forward.

i know my personality and if i don’t get “everything” done in a day i feel like a failure.  i put a lot of pressure on myself and put a lot on my plate.

knowing all of this about myself i have to make a SAHM plan.  i need to have certain things planned out each day so that at the end of the day i can feel accomplished.  i know a lot of women will think “you’re a mom, you’re accomplishment is raising a baby everyday” and that is most definitely number one.  maybe i’m even putting too much pressure myself from the start.  maybe i don’t need a plan so much but to just let each day happen.  i may start that way but i’ll still have my plan waiting in the wings if i start to feel lost or off track.

i’m going to make certain days “grocery day”, “laundry day”, “yard work day”. i’m going to plan a daily dinner, a task to complete each day in terms of keeping up the household. i’m going to plan at least one outing a day with maeve be it a walk or a community drop-in activity.  i feel like picking only 1 thing in each category i will feel accomplished and not overwhelmed.

any other SAHMs that have any input from your personal experiences of being a SAHM, i would looooove to hear from you! challenges.  successful strategies.  recipes! lol i’m all ears :)

bathroom reno – “vanity” issues

who would have known a little sink and mirror could be so challenging?!  hahaha

so.  we found a mirror yesterday.

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i am SUPER visual, so the bucket was our fill in for the sink so i could “see it” hahaha.

the sink was delivered about an hour later lol

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so now the great debate.  one light above the mirror? or sconce lights on either side?  the sink is wider than the bucket so i think sconce lights are an option but what’s best.  create a “vanity” area by adding width with light fixtures? or do i keep it all lean and tight?  the sink and mirror are no the only things along that wall.  the toilet will be coming off the back wall and facing in towards the sink.

bathroom reno – round 2

work has begun in our second bathroom!  there is still some stuff to do in the second level bathroom but it is just finishing touches so i gave the “okay” for focus to be shifted to the second reno hahaha (because i’m really the on in charge here …. hahaha).

i hadn’t really thought about actually ever getting to my bathroom (i’m soooo dramatic) so i hadn’t even thought about all the stuff i had to decide on and purchase in order for any of this to happen!

so last night i had a chance to sit down and pick some things out.  it’s a lot harder to find all the things you need in same colour and (somewhat of) the same style.  then you have to think about the “weight” of your items.  will solid, heavy fixtures, look good with a “light” simple mirror?  do you have then have to keep the lighting “light” to match the mirror?  does it all need to be “heavy” to stand up with each other?  sconce lights on either side of the mirror? do they hang upwards or downwards? or should you go with just one light above the mirror?

the biggest problem i have with this is i have to know ALL of it without seeing it together.  i have look at separate pieces online and then hope they actually go together in real life and order it sight unseen.  most people go to the big box hardware store, pick out some very nice things that all match up in and have a cohesive look. they end up with a normal, matching room when they are done. that would be too easy for us hahaha.  well, firstly, we have a small amount of space so “typical” things won’t work for us.  we need a wall mounted sink for space reasons.  then we have a very old claw foot tub that requires a very specific faucet system.  then on top of all that i don’t want silver.  no chrome.  no brushed nickel.  i’ll have none it!  i, of course, want antique brass hahaha.  that narrowed the choices pretty damn quick!   then good luck finding anything in a matching set in that finish…

so after my husband spent a all full day, no joke, all full fucking day online looking at things and me getting really frustrated with him and sitting down for a few hours last night, i now have a bunch of stuff headed my way from China and the U.S hahaha.

i really hope it all goes together.

now to figure out lighting and a mirror, like yesterday, because of course that all has to be chosen before the drywall can ever go up….


these are all for sure items

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download cbfc5a9032fc24d346363c6ec3a33d8e

these are the “will this fucking work?!” items

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we just decided that we’ll go to the antique market down the road today and see if we can find a mirror.  then i will for sure be able to make a decision on lighting :)

they still just don’t get it

since getting pregnant and having maeve i have obviously been able to let go of the hurt and frustration of not being able to stay pregnant and have a baby.  however, the pain of our loses before that and the fear of future loses and worry about TTC again still creeps up from time to time.  it still makes me very sad and i don’t cry about it as much as i did but i still get very emotional at times.

as mentioned before i am in a lot of pain and there is no diagnosed reason (yet) for this.  we are slowly narrowing it down and i am hopeful we will find a reason and fix it very soon.  as we were visiting with my in-laws last week my husband started telling his mom about my pain.  during that conversation it kind of transitioned into the topic of more children and i answered honestly that right now i feel like i could have one and be absolutely happy.  my husband also commented that i have been through so much and am now going through this postpartum pain he would not resent me at all for only wanting one and he too would be fulfilled.  his mother kind of brushed it off and said, “well you have more times to try so you should try them all and then if it doesn’t work you know you at least tried”.

they still just don’t get it and if they don’t get it now, they never will.  can i really blame them for not getting it though?  no.  i kind of can’t.  if you haven’t been through something and felt firsthand what it’s like then it’s impossible to truly get it.  my MIL has been by the bedside of my FIL on numerous occasions, wondering if she was going to lose him to complications with diabetes and blood clots and amputations and cancer.  i have never experienced the profound worry and heartache that would be felt in that situation but i can without a doubt empathize and imagine what that would be like.  i feel like with us, there isn’t that same empathy applied.  i know my husband’s family does everything with humor and an optimistic outlook.  you have to use both of those things to get through the trails and tribulations of life and we have applied those same coping mechanisms to our own loses and struggle but i just don’t feel like they “feel” anything towards it.  there is no emotion involved in these discussions.  my husband has admitted that he doesn’t really feel much emotion.  they didn’t express themselves emotionally as a family.  he never heard i love you or got many kisses and hugs as a child.  his mother is a math teacher and chris follows in this family trait and so things are very cut and dry.  fact and function.  logic.  no emotion.  i on the other hand, i run pretty much SOLELY on emotions.  yes, yes, there are facts and logic but we are human beings.  we need to relate on an emotional level more then anything else.  i think the fact that in all these (rare) discussions i have never been commended for going through everything that i have is what really bothers me.  i don’t need to be treated like saint by any means but some recognition and love put towards the ordeal of a lifetime would be kind of nice.  thinking and discussing with some heart is all i’m asking for.  logical thought, however, seem to be all my MIL is capable of.  the “you have more times to try, so try more times” is all she can muster.  i think she just can’t physically go any deeper than that.

it’s hurtful that she may think that i haven’t tried enough or that we haven’t succeeded yet.  the comment of “try more times and when you’ve tried all that you can THEN you’ll know you did your best”.  that right there, really stings.  i have ALREADY done my best.  i have tried everything i could for the last 4 years.  i survived losing 3 babies.  for two of those i had to make the decision to end my babies lives (2 ectopics).  i had 3 surgeries in less then 3 years.  needles poked in almost every part of my body.  i went through the mental roller coaster of 2 rounds of IVF.  suffered OHSS.  had a rough pregnancy and even rougher labour.  i have already “tried my best”.

i think what’s frustrating about this scenario too is the idea that so many people have in that if you don’t have more than one child you won’t be fulfilled.  or that choosing to have one child makes it look like you can’t handle more than one.  we have a dream baby. she is amazing.  i love her more than words could possibly express.  right now, (and mind you i am only 4 months postpartum), i feel complete.  we have a family. i am a mom. i am so happy.  i don’t feel like having more than one will make me more complete at this point.  it is still a general idea though that a family is complete once there are (at least) 2 children.

this has been kind of a jumble of thoughts but that makes sense because my head is just an endless jumble of thoughts these days. i don’t really know how to end this post.  it wasn’t a topic i thought out to talk about today it just happened to be on my mind as i opened my computer so i went with it.  i think i don’t know how to end this post because i don’t know if this is the end to our TTC journey.  what i DO know, however, that this most likely is not the end of people just not getting it.

blog catch up #2 – Maeve

wordpress is really pushing it these days with not saving drafts…. or am i just not saving them…. needless to say, i’m pretty frustrated.

i had almost finished my catch post #2 – all about maeve – and it didn’t save.  i’m so bummed it’s all gone :(  *le sigh*

after not posting in forever i made a goal to write about three things i’d been thinking about a lot lately.  3 posts in one week was a pretty lofty goal so i’ll be happy with my one (technically there were 2 but…. clearly i can’t let this go ahhah).  this week i now have a 2 post goal ;)

maeve is growing and changing so rapidly i can barely keep up. it seems like there is a new thing almost every day.

the newest new thing is she broke her first tooth on thursday! well technically i started to feel it before i put her to bed on wednesday but in the baby books i’m going with thursday.  4 months, 11 days and that sharp little sucker finally popped out :)  she has been quite good about it too.  no face rash, no bum rash, no fever, no diarrhea.  actually it’s been the opposite.  all of a sudden she’s started going 2-3 days between poops :S  she still keeps her smile through it all though. even when she’s crying, she’s still trying to keep a smile. it’s almost heart breaking to watch.

she’s rolling over consistently but hates tummy time.  she’s gets herself over, is happy for about 30 seconds then all hell breaks loose.  she always has her hands in her mouth so when she gets on her tummy she rams them in there and then doesn’t work on holding her head up or using her arms to lift herself.  maybe now that the tooth is out she will focus more on this?

this a weird one but she discovered the back of her head hahaha.  she takes her hand and strokes her little mullet back there LOL.

she smiles and “talks” and yells and babbles.  she moves her mouth when you are talking to her.  she has started to make “muh muh muh” sounds. it’s so adorable. she looks like she’s ready for food.  she watches everything you do and even mimics the chewing motion.  i’m going to talk to the dr. about pablum at her 4 month appt. on tuesday.  it’s early but she also already has a tooth so she may be developing more rapidly in that department.

i’ll be honest, she is sleeping pretty horribly right now and i am really tired! she went from sleeping 6-7 hours through the night to 3 in a row, if i’m lucky! once she’s up she is insistent on suckling at my boob.  even when she’s been, from i can tell, dead asleep for half an hour on my breast as soon as i put her down she’s wailing.  however, this morning there a twist in the plot! she fell off my boob and started fussing.  i tried putting her back on but she kept fussing.  i put her down in the bed beside me and fell fast asleep.  progress?!  i sure as hell hope so haha.

she LOOOOOOOVES her jolly jumper and i love it too!  a few meals without a baby in my arms is pr-i-tty nice.  she will spend a solid half an hour in there before she starts to fuss.  what a great invention.  she has a couple of JJ sessions a day now.

she is almost too big for her bath tub.  she want to sit up and slash the water with her hands.  my husband has just started the work on the second bathroom reno and that is where the tub will be so it she’ll be in the sink tub for a couple of months still but once the bathroom is finished she is going to have a ball splashing away in there.

we started putting her in the actual stroller.  we just clip the straps her waist, not worrying about the shoulders and lean it back into an elevated laying position and she loves it.  she kicks her legs up onto the cup holder, bar thingy (what is that part even called!?) and she is straight up chillin’ in there!

there is more i’m forgetting for sure but happy to have some of this recorded to look back on.

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blog catch up #1 – pain

i’m in a lot of pain folks!  i honestly thought after the miscarriages, surgeries, IVF treatments, D&C, OHSS, pregnancy, labor and subsequent c-section i would finally be done with my pain and skipping my ass everywhere i went from here on out.

of course i couldn’t be that lucky.

after i had my PUPPPs rash at the two month mark and the relaxin started to leave my body i started to get very intense lower back, hip, knee, shin and foot pain.  i have always had achy feet and the odd aches in my shins but the pain now is like nothing i’ve ever had in the past. i wrote about my pain in a post not too long ago. it was brief and i’m not even sure if i had seen my dr. about it at that point but i’m still in so much pain.  my dr. checked my blood for all sorts of things including a marker for inflammatory disease, protein, RA, etc. and thank goodness it all came back negative.  the vision of MS in my future was pretty terrifying.  she gave me a referral to a rheumologist and i saw him last thursday.  she was a young dr. very nice, very thorough, an attentive listener (and kind of cute ;) ). he asked all sorts of questions, took lots of notes, checked all my joints, like i’m talking every single one.  manipulated my legs and back and found some concern in my lower back.  he ordered more blood work to check calcium levels and i’m doing another genetic test with a long name and numbers in it that i can’t remember. he also ordered x-rays on my hips, pelvis, knees, feet, spinal lumbar and one more thing i can’t remember and i’m too lazy to go check the paper work for lol.  from what i could read in the notes at the top the x-rays are ruling out degenerative vs. inflammatory.  if nothing obvious is seen in the x-rays i’ll then be sent for an MRI to get an up close and personal look at my insides.  he is on the path of thinking it’s a herniated disk in my lower spine.  i googled up herniated disc because i thought if that is actually what it is i would be all jacked up and in so much pain i could barely move, no?  the answer to that is actually no. you can have a herniated disc your whole damn life and have no idea and no pain.  or you can have herniated disc and feel like you are 120 years old. you can have a charlie horse in your ass cheeks and the backs of your thighs all day, erry day. your knees can feel like they are about to snack backwards at any moment and your feet might as well be bound in chinese foot wraps.

there are things you can do that are non-surgical to help alleviate a herniated disc.  you can do stretches and exercises, apply hot and cold compresses, have acupuncture treatments and go for chiropractic adjustments. in some cases though, you have to have surgery to remedy the problem.

so, yet again, i’m anxiously waiting to find out what the hell is wrong with me (this time!) hahaha.  i woke up this morning and had twisted my back in a way that is very painful and the struggle is super real in my lower half today.

i’m putting my dr. hat on and putting my money on herniated disc only correctable by surgical intervention.


getting back to using this blog as i intended to

we’ve been gone for 2 weeks on a road trip through michigan, indiana, illinois and wisconsin.  we spent most of the trip in michigan and wisconsin.  we spent 2 days in illinois in chicago specifically and we actually only briefly drove through part of indiana (we never even stepped foot on the ground hahaha).

i want to post about all the things we did on our vacation.

i want to post about how maeve is growing up, so much and so fast.

i want to post about my trip to the rheumologist today and what we’re doing to try and diagnose the pain i’ve been having in the lower parts of my body.

i am not sure how many of you really care about my life hahaha but i want to use this blog to record the things that are happening, how i feel about them and what i plan to do next.

in the next week i am making a goal of posting about all the topics i listed above.

i hope i don’t let myself down.