A Day in the Life | Fall 2014

Well, I will be honest in that I was dreading Laura's announcement that it's time for another DiTL round up. I just really dislike how I feel the need to make these such an enormous feat. Why can I not just snap a few (less than 100) pictures, throw a few captions on there and call it done? Answer: I am crazy about details and capturing every moment, and I believe it's worth it later when I read back over every mind-numbing detail. This day I wasn't even planning to record for a DiTL. But I decided to take the plunge around 11 and the rest is history:) Really glad I tackled it even if it's not full of numerous minuscule tidbits of detail that I usually love. And let's get real, it's still pretty freaking detailed but maybe not over-the-top for once. Also, you'll notice that I have very few images in this post compared to my norm and no collages. I will explain at the end, as I'm sure you are very heartbroken about this. Enjoy!

Friday | October 31, 2014 {Halloween!}
Nate and I are both 33 years old.
Truman is 4.5 years old
Cecelia is *almost* 2.5 years old
Porter is 3.5 months old
Henry dog is 9 years old (he gets in on this post more than usual)

5:00 am | Porter cries out from his swing in the nursery. This is estimated to be his fifth time waking up in the night and I'm feeling scary-spent. Sleep deprivation seems to be hitting a peak that I'm struggling to climb, and it's just getting really old. I mean, five times, Porter? Plus a particularly ridiculous bedtime last night that included multiple 'I refuse to keep my eyes closed when you lay me down.' I nursed him at 3am and the other times I replaced his pacifier or just cuddled a second. This time his eyes shoot back open as I'm walking out of his room, so I send Nate in there with a hearty dose of 'I cannot freaking do this anymore, I'm about to die' to start our day off right! 

5:15 am | No luck for Nate. He apparently tries to place Porter in the crib (!) and this does not fly. I go in and cave quickly to nursing because maybe he is really hungry? I struggle with being firm on our attempts to get Porter to sleep better. Night time is the only time the kid will even nurse, so I can't quite put my foot down and he's so little that it's okay by me to feed him. But: sooooooooo tired. 

5:30 am | Lay him in the swing and decide to take my shower earlier than planned. Really dislike being up in the 4-5 o'clock hours because it's dreadful to fall back to sleep for just an hour or so before the alarm goes back off. Lately I've been getting up for the day after these wake ups, since in theory this will allow for a more relaxed morning and added time to get ready. Hee hee, Julia. So naive!

6:15 am | Out of the shower and I hear Truman being extra loud in his bed, obeying the rule to stay in there until his clock turns yellow but singing school songs also means he could wake up his sister. Who is a beast in the mornings if her life does not go according to her plan. So I go in and say Truman can go downstairs early. I get ready for the day and even blow dry my hair with all of this extra time. Porter is up at 6:45 and Cecelia is up at 6:50. Sort of feel like walking on egg shells with both of these children until it's apparent what kind of moods they might be in. So far so good as neither immediately meltdown. Nice.

6:55 am | Nate comes in from taking Henry outside and…..the pup is obviously having some issues with his backside. Super fun times to be recorded in a DITL, but the backstory is that Henry had a vet appointment earlier this week. I was shocked that our beloved vet had to retire suddenly since the last time we saw him, so a new vet is practicing now. Fine, whatever. But this new vet and three techs had a miserable time expressing Henry's left anal gland (I know, I know, I'm sorry to even go into this!). It was really bad and horrifying. And now, a few days later, things are just not right back there for the little buddy. Nate thinks it's infected and I'm not sure but I dry heave as I clean things up. Really think I might vom in the sink and suddenly breakfast doesn't sound appealing at all. Discuss with Nate our options of watching and waiting, calling to get Henry in ASAP, or dying from the stench. We pick B and this means I will have to juggle things around more than planned and therefore I feel a little stress as my mind races for times of this day that would work for a vet appt. It's always something.

7:00 am | Nate kisses us goodbye. Usually Fridays are a day he goes in to work at 9:30 and so he does daycare drop off at Lori's and also walks Truman over to school. Today he has a continuing education course. Also all day Saturday. Also he just returned from a four night stay in San Diego for a different course. So you can imagine that I'm really supportive with all of this extra time away from us and focusing on work. (Sarcasm. I'm the worst sometimes). I get breakfast ready for the kids and myself, drink my coffee, make Porter a bottle, feed it to him on the couch. I get CC and Porter dressed while Truman does it for himself. I take a few pictures of the trio in their Halloween ensembles and decide to squeeze in a quick pumping sesh before I head to Lori's. I already waved the white flag and called in reinforcement for this morning's chaos, when I asked Tony to come over to walk Truman to school. This will allow me to take the littles to Lori's at the same time as school drop off, otherwise I couldn't do it all. Note to self: I can't EVER do it all. Reinforcements are good. Support systems are great. Pretty sure we'd be living in a mental institution without Tony and Lois, for real.

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8:00 am | Tony arrives, and I stop pumping although it's only been about 3 minutes. Hate to stop mid-flow but no time (there's never any time!!! Saved By the Bell, anyone??). I gather up Cecelia, Porter, the daycare bag, their costumes, and chug some coffee before heading out at 8:15 am. Tony and Truman are walking across the street for school. It's really freaking cold today and windy as heck. Should have taken a screen shot of the temperature this morning but at this point I still didn't know I was doing a DITL post. Look at me being all spontaneous!

8:30 am | Arrive at Lori's. Her power has been on and off all morning and it seems sort of chaotic there, which means I feel right at home;) I wanted to help her get the kids into their costumes to take a group picture right away but there really isn't any time for that right now. Lori says she will do it later and we both agree that a margarita would be appropriate for a liquid breakfast today. Call the vet on the way home from Lori's, they have an opening at 11:00. Which is exactly when my first patient is scheduled today and I am planning to go to Truman's Halloween party at school from 8:45-10:30. Sigh. More schedule shuffling because I really need to make this vet appointment work. And see my patients. And go to Truman's party that I promised him I'd attend. DOING ALL THE THINGS is fun!

8:40 am | Home. Tony is there waiting for me, since I roped him into helping at the party along with me. He is off all day today, but sometimes he teaches on Fridays so it's Lois that stays with Truman after school. But today it's all Papa and I figured he would have fun at the party, too. So we head over to the school for the Junior Kindergarten parade and party. Seriously so much fun and worth the change in schedule in my work day because these are the fun things I know Truman will probably remember from this year in school! Tony and I are in charge of Halloween Bingo at the party, which includes using candy corn for place markers. And none of the kids understand the concept of Bingo and simply want to eat the candy. Go figure! Super awesome time, loved watching Truman and his class walk through all of the classrooms in the school (high fives for the Angry Bird!), loved the Bingo activity, and loved their fancy snacks that some talented mother must have made for the party. I left at 10:30 but Tony stayed since school is over at 10:55.

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10:40 am | Pump for maybe 6 minutes before I have to take Henry to his appointment. Another session cut short means I still feel super full and haven't gotten much milk today with these half-hearted pump breaks. Better than nothing I suppose! Load Henry into the van with a giant beach towel on one of the kids' car seats. Can't have any icky dog fluids on their seats. Worrying about what they'll find at this appointment and how wrecked my day will be with my patients. Decide to wait on phone calls to them until I know what time I will be coming---very unlike me to change a set time with a patient but today is just a weird day. 

11:10 am | Arrive at vet. Text with Erin, Mom and Nate. Erin says she is doing DiTL and this reminds me that I really did want to do one this season, but I just kept dragging my feet since it always feels so monumental. Figure that now is as good of a time as any and maybe not documenting every detail from the morning will be a good thing! Going for it. Memory preservation always trumps the time commitment for these posts. See that Lori is still dealing with a power outage. See a picture of my children in their costumes at her house….very unhappy campers. Oh boy. Eat some Skittles from the receptionist desk. Continuously assure Henry that it's okay and he won't be violated quite as much as last time. Poor bud is a nervous wreck and I'm just anxious about everything. We are tons of fun, Henry and I. 

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11:15 am | The vet calls us back---it's a new one AGAIN, not the same one from Tuesday. Basically she thinks his rear is incredibly inflamed and possibly infected. She prescribes NSAIDs and also antibiotics and assures me that he should feel relief soon. She also says 'we won't charge for this appointment,' which is appreciated, but I ask if the medications are going to be expensive. Because really, this entire ordeal is because of how rough they were on Tuesday. The meds end up being $45 which is fine, but I definitely feel the sense of dread that comes with having an aging dog. Decisions that we will have to make going forward, money, time, worries….Henry is worth it, of course, but it's just sad to even think about his health changing! And I'm not sure I want these big decisions to be made in this vet's office anymore---miss the old guy, but he isn't an option. Give Henry a treat or two at the reception desk because he was quite brave. {See end of post for an update on Henry. Hint: it got a lot worse before it's going to get better}

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11:45 am | Back home to drop off Mister Inflamed Tushy. Fill Tony in on Henry and ask if he could give Hank the meds. Also mention that Lori may close early due to the power outage and Tony says he could watch Porter and CC if needed. I only have three patients to see so I'm hopeful I can get through them before picking up the kids but it's nice to have Tony as back up. Truman is hanging on the couch with the iPad and Tony is putting all of the storm windows on our house for us. Again: where would we be without my in-laws?? (answer: loony bin)  

11:50 am | I call patient number one tell her I'm on my way and she's okay with it. Call patient number two and tell her I'll be there closer to 1 o'clock instead of 12:30 and she is also okay with it. Don't call patient three yet, unsure of how quickly I can move through my first two treatments and hoping I can get to number three on time. I'm really really glad the office did not give me additional patient for today, like I had requested before, and I had another patient move off of my schedule from today. Otherwise this would not have been a possible day for work, and going to Truman's party and the vet wouldn't have happened. Really do love my flexible job!

Nice to get out and about when the trees are still pretty, too.
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12-12:55 pm | Patient number one. A little bit needy and had me take out her trash for her as I leave. Just doing my job, I suppose (?). Full boobs and bladder, empty stomach. I can't get over how cold and windy it is today. Trick-or-treating is tonight and it's currently 37 degrees, but sunny. But this crazy wind is blowing everything all over the city (and a downed limb is what caused Lori's power outage). Ah, fall weather. Just never know what we'll get!

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1:05 pm | I'm back home to pick up my forgotten lunch bag and to pee.  No more toilet paper in the bathroom. Why is life so hard?? Drive. Eat. Caught taking selfie of me eating my sandwich in the car. OMG. 

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1:10 -2:00 pm | Patient number two. Last day with her and she's a sweetie but discharging her means added paperwork to sort through tonight. Definitely feeling a bit frazzled right now with a racing mind full of totally random thoughts about all.the.things. This is when I have many mental pep talks like, 'Chill out, focus on one patient at a time, don't think about Lori/Henry/kids/trick-or-treating/etc. Just go with the present,' and all of that mumbo jumbo. Called patient number three, who I originally planned to see 1:30 and it's 2 o'clock now. Pretty sure I've never NOT called a patient when I was going to be late but I guess I sort of hoped to be caught up again. Patient's wife is totally fine. 'You had your son's party this morning, right?' Yup. And a vet appointment but that's a story for another day. I consider pumping but decided to eat a little bit more of my lunch instead. I've only had to pump while driving one time since having Porter (did it many times after the other kids) and I really do hate it. I always visualize the pump disconnecting and my milk will spray anywhere at any given moment, and lord knows I'm clinging to every drop right now!

2:15-3:00 pm | Patient number three is a hot mess. Whatever. Scribble a quick list of paperwork to be done later. Boobs are exploding. Will go home before getting the kids, so I can pump and change clothes, but if I just drove towards Lori's and parked somewhere to pump/paperwork time I would probably have less time in the car. But still, going home first before Lori's always wins in my book.

Love how festive people are in Milwaukee for special occasions
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3:20 pm | Home. School is just getting out for the (bigger kids' ) day and it's pure chaos on our street.  Boys are not here and I'm guessing they are at the library, since I mentioned our books are due today. Put Henry's new vet appointment on the paper calendar, because our phone calendars never seem official enough for me. Clean off the table since we are having visitors tonight. Pick up the kitchen. Pump a full 15 minutes for once. Eat some candy. Thirsty as heck all of a sudden. Convert mL to oz on the computer, specifically so that I can report to you how much water I've had today. I'm working on 75oz right now (third bottle of 750 mL). Paperwork time while pumping.

Can't believe I didn't have to pump one time in the van today! Must commemorate my pumping days with at least one picture though.
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3:45 pm | Mostly finished with the priority paperwork. Transfer my milk from the big pumping bottles and see I only got 9 oz today. Meh. Those two halfie sessions killed me. Change clothes quickly and decide to forgo the glorified pajamas (yoga pants and a hoodie) that I usually wear after work for a more presentable ToT'ing option. Darn (clean and folded) laundry baskets are mocking me from the bed. Selfies are taken as I didn't take nearly enough pictures of 'getting ready' from the morning, since I was unaware that today would even be a DiTL. Grab two frozen pizzas from basement to get ready for tonight. Darn (clean and also dirty) dishes are mocking me. Pour more water into my bottle. I sometimes forget how much water I consume when lactating. 

Work Julia.
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Trick-or-Treating Julia. Horrible lighting both times.
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Bane of my existence.
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4:00 pm | Leave the house, super late, call Lori to tell her she can wait to put Porter in his car seat since I'll be later and also call Tony. Both are fine. Tony and Truman just went to Tony's house after the library, and I reminded them to be home by 5:15 for when Erin and family come over. Sometimes Tony and Truman will play over there until 6pm or later, so CC and Porter and I just go about our evenings without them. I think I see flurries as I'm driving to Lori's house and sort of want to die at the thought of actual winter. Which is just around the freaking corner, of course.

Construction everywhere in this city lately. Also, ominous clouds.
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4:10 pm | Lori's house. Good report on both kiddos. They did have a fun time at her Halloween party and she is sending home two cups full of candy and treats. Just what we need! Porter is spitting up more lately, which I've noticed at home, too. But he is also smiling his fat face off looking at Lori whenever I get there and usually when we arrive in the mornings, too. She has a special bond with my baby and also to my daughter---something I seriously appreciate more than I realize. Good daycare providers are absolutely KEY for working moms. If I've learned anything from the MMIW series, that is it. 

4:22 pm | Pull away from Lori's house, and it's usually hard to leave since both she and I tend to be a little chatty at the end of our days. Cecelia keeps saying she wants to go trick-or-treating right now is having a very hard time waiting. But she says she also had a good time with her friends today, and lists off all of her buddies at daycare. "I see pumpkins mommy. I see ghost-es mommy. You did super great Portie!' And he did! No crying at all in this car ride and I make a mental note to report that his car seat hatred has significantly diminished in the past few weeks.

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4:35 pm | Home with my babes. Let Henry out and watch for any signs of backside distress. CC requests to rock Porter in his car seat. 'How your day??' she asks. God I love her sometimes. Heat a 6 oz bottle. Feed the baby. CC plays trains on Truman's new track before big brother comes to regulate on this decision. 

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4:50 pm | Our boys are here. Still giving Porter a bottle and read the notebooks from daycare, to get a paper report on C and P's days. Porter ate 12 ounces today and I pumped 9 in my pathetic sessions. Not too bad. Tru is showing library books to us and Tony reads the kids a Clifford gem.  We discuss who is coming over shortly and Cecelia declares, 'Ben is my buddy. Ellie is Porter's.' And Truman says, 'Henry is mine but he is five and I'm only four-and-a-half.' CC gives everyone Chapstick quite aggressively, as always.

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5:10 pm | Porter is done, took 5 oz. Tony leaves but he and Lois are both coming over later to pass out candy while we ToT. They are unreal as they suggested this and I totally forgot about giving candy at our house. Nate texted and is wrapping up. Erin is leaving soon. Kids are playing together nicely so I decide to majorly press my luck and request a few pictures of them in their costumes before the sunlight is totally gone. For some reason CC is all about this and Porter is also super happy but Truman is NOT into it and is extremely grumpy. Ah, memories.

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5:30 pm | I put the pizzas in the oven. Nate is officially on his way and Erin should be here any minute, too. Porter freaks out and is not okay with being alone on the couch anymore. Tru is whining about having candy before dinner. Low moments are had with 2/3 children crying hysterically. Pick Ports up and he falls fast asleep in my arms almost immediately: his new favorite trick that I cannot deny. Truman is picking on CC and she isn't tolerating it well. We discuss the meaning of 'instigating' for the millionth time. Threatening Truman with everything I have in my bones, which basically boils down to removing all iPad privileges indefinitely if he doesn't shape up. It's going to be a long night, my friends. 

5:40 pm | Erin and kids are here! Let's drink a glass of wine stat. Eat some pizza. Clink our glasses. Talk about life which mostly consists of how our two year olds are such wild cards, having three kids is no joke, but yet THE BEST. I love that Erin and I are moving through this Mothers of Three thing together---so nice to share in the highs and the lows. 

5:45 pm | Tony and Lois arrive, bringing their own candy to pass at our house for us. Again: They are the best. And we really did have some candy of our own but apparently you can't ever have too much.

6:10 pm | Nate is home. I realize we will need another frozen pizza for he and Dave, most likely after we return from ToT. Tony and Lois offered to stay back with Porter and Ellie so the babies didn't have to get out in this nasty weather. Erin and I decide to take them up on this and I make them swear to text me if the babes are tweaking. Get the kids all dressed in their gear and force them to take pictures, much to their dismay. I swear these six kids are ridiculously adorable and make me smile. Such characters! 

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6:30 pm | Leave for ToT'ing as Dave pulls up. He and Nate go back inside to make To-Go drinks, while the moms take the four kids down the street to start the fun. It's really freaking cold and windy and pitch black but of course the kids have a ball. The dads meet up with us at the second house and we all discuss memories of Halloweens past, how quickly these kids are growing, and our plans for the next few weeks. We see Truman's school teacher and I could keel over watching him stare at her with googly eyes. She is really fun and hides her beer before I snap their picture. A few of the other kids from his class have spotted her and move in with the same googly eyes. They truly think she is a god or something. Adorable.

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7:15 pm | We are done, lasting longer than I expected actually. Both babies are hanging with Tony and Lois like they are old pals, but Porter looks crazy tired since he's usually in bed by 7 at the latest. I take him upstairs and get him in his jammies, swaddle, and nurse walking around the nursery because he cannot handle being in the rocker right now. He puts up a decent fight and is pretty angry about everything but eventually he settles and nurses well. The problem is when I try to lay him in the swing. Old eyes-snap-open is back with a vengeance. Sigh. On my third attempt to place him in the swing it seems to work. No little eyeballs stare back at me this time. Please sleep, little buddy.

7:50 pm | Finally come back downstairs, feel bad that I was probably making Erin and Dave wait around for me to do bedtime with the baby. But then again, their baby is Super Sleeper Extraordinare so she's basically sleeping on Erin's chest without a care in the world or a startle from various toys zooming past her head. Seriously. Ellie is officially a mythical 'perfect baby'. Nate makes me a Brandy Old Fashioned and it is the bomb. Talking with Erin/Dave and Tony/Lois while unwrapping various candies for the children. I realize that Cecelia is swiping candy from other bowls and she is hopped up on sugar, but tries to downplay the hop. I also change her disgusting diaper and she has one of her 'squeeze my legs shut because I don't want you to wipe me' episodes, complete with high-pitched screaming. Good times. 

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8:15 pm | Our friends leave after Ben/Truman/Henry do a few triple hugs. Cecelia does not want in on that action as she is being intense in her sadness over being told we are done with candy for the night. I forgot how much Halloween Candy Battles suck. 

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8:25 pm | Tony and Lois leave as both kids fall asleep on our shoulders. I really really want a group picture of Nate and I holding sleeping children but we forgo the epic shot because our arms are breaking off with these heavy children. We take the kids up to their bunks and they stay asleep. No books, no teeth brushing, nothing. Very different bedtime but I guess we'll take it! Busy day for these knuckle heads.
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8:30 pm | Nate and I clean up the kitchen and the other rooms of the house. Check kids on the monitor and no drama happening up there.

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8:45 pm | I sit down for what feels like the first time since 5 am. Ahhhh. Turn on TV and Shark Tank is on, eat a small Hershey bar, talk to Nate a bit and catch up on days. Look at IG and FB and decide that Halloween is probably one of the best nights of the year for social media with ridiculously cute kids all around. Go through pics on my phone and real camera and laugh because it's JUST SO FUN to have kids during holidays. If Halloween can be considered a 'holiday', that is.

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9:10 pm | Time to pump and upload real pics to computer and then Flickr. Will have to upload the pictures from my phone later. 

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Favorite 'real camera' shots:
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9:30 pm | Done but I got hardly anything from the old milk bags. I guess he did nurse a lot from both sides just 1.5 hr ago. Clean pump parts and pour milk into bottles for the next day. Nate goes upstairs for the night and I'm right behind him.

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9:45 pm | Get ready for bed. Check email and see that Truman's teacher emailed me to say it was nice to see us tonight. Aww. 

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9:50 pm | In bed but I absolutely must IG and feel stressed about which picture to showcase. So I post three from my real camera and try not to worry about over-gramming. Fall fast asleep after staring at the video monitor for any signs of wakefulness in the kiddos. Nope. See ya!

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3:36 am | Yes! First wake up from Porter means I just got 5.5 hours of solid sleep. This hasn't happened in weeks and I feel like I'm ready to start my day, totally rested. I go into the nursery and give P the pacifier but don't pick him up, because I'm so tough. Boobs are full though, since nighttime seems to be the only time he ever nurses anymore. Sneak back to our bedroom and curse squeaky floors and doors. 

3:48 am | He's crying again so my sneaky pacifier-only tactic failed. Nurse him and make photo collages on my phone, from Halloweens past. Not a great idea because it makes me wake up even more, but I feel like if I don't take my phone in for nighttime nursing sessions I just fall asleep and almost break my neck as a bobble head over and over again. I finally go back to bed at 4:11 am after making killer collages, don't worry. Comparisons! Really glad I uploaded these to Flickr the next morning before my phone imploded on itself {more on that below}.

Truman on Halloween
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Cecelia on Halloween
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All babies on their first Halloweens
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Truman + Cecelia on Halloween
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6:15 am | CC is up calling for 'mommmmmmmy.' Nate is just waking up to his alarm so he goes in there for me. I fall back to sleep almost immediately.

6:45 am | Nate kisses me goodbye, as he's off to his Saturday morning course. He mentions something about updating the software on my phone, which I still have yet to do, but I'm too sleepy to properly respond. As soon as Nate places his foot on the step to go downstairs, Porter wakes up. Go in and nurse again. Truman wakes up, hops down from his bunk, and peeks into the nursery waving 'hello' as he makes his way to the bathroom. He pops in again and mouths something to me that I cannot understand, but then heads back to his room since I've switched his clock to remain blue until 7am now. Wild!  He and CC are singing and talking really loudly but they are waiting to get out of bed until that light blazes yellow. I lay Porter down because he's fast asleep and guess what? He wakes up and fusses as soon as his body makes contact with the swing. No pacifier, shushing, or rubbing his little eyebrows will convince him to stay asleep. Sigh. Take him to my room since kids will be up any minute and try to nurse a bit more. At 7:00 the bigs come in and are really cute saying 'good morning' to Porter. But then the next hour of the morning totally sucks. I decide everyone must be coming down off a horrible Halloween hangover. No other reason to have multiple meltdowns within 30 minutes of waking for the day! Gimme.All.The.Wine.At.8am. Eventually we all pull through and salvaged the rest of the day because duh, it's Saturday even if Nate is gone for most of it. 

And that's my 'Life as a Working Mom of Three' DiTL for now. Long days, short years, or something like that….right?

Quick aside on my technical difficulties with the iPhone: Nate has been bugging me to do the software update for along time now. I just never made time for it because I knew it would take awhile and need to be plugged in. But Saturday afternoon I finally took the plunge....and then my phone freaked out and imploded on me. Not really, but something happened and the update couldn't run properly and the computer said I had to restore all factory settings. And lose my data and media and apps....since I'm an idiot and wasn't regularly backing my phone up on iCloud and all of that. I *thought* it was backing up but I should have checked. So I lost any contact updates or changes since March of 2013, lost all of the collages I made Saturday morning for this post, and had to re-add a bunch of apps. Could have been worse but it could have been better. Thankfully I had emailed myself the notes for this post and put all of the pics on Flickr already, but the collages are not a top priority to re-configure. Julia of the future: if you really want to view all 148 pictures from this DiTL here is the album on Flickr. And lesson learned because I now re-did my entire contacts list and backed it up immediately. And iCloud settings are also updated. Good times. This is why I hate technology sometimes! And also, I am super dependent on my iPhone because not having it for about 6 hours on Saturday almost killed me. Sort of. First world problems to the max, yes. 

Update on Henry: Do not read if you are squeamish with bodily fluids, you've been warned. So we gave him both medications as prescribed and he seemed alright all day on Saturday, but his butt still looked super swollen. Maybe even worse than Friday. He was acting normal and didn't seem to be in pain so we just kept giving the meds and watching it. Sunday morning we checked and both Nate and I thought it looked better. Then around noon I was upstairs in the nursery nursing Porter (!) and Nate came up to say, 'Henry is bleeding out of his butt.' I panicked and Nate was obviously shaken, too. It was pretty awful---a trail of blood across the kitchen and all over the rug in the living room. I guess Nate took him outside and then when Henry came back in, he was bleeding everywhere. 

I called the vet ASAP, knowing they now have weekend clinic hours, and at first they tried to tell me they would be able to fit me in FOUR HOURS LATER. Um, no. My dog is actively bleeding and I truly believe this happened because they were so rough with him on Tuesday. They got us right in after I said I wasn't sure how to handle a dog bleeding out of his butt for four hours. The vet was the same one from Tuesday, who actually did the expression of the gland. He believes he did not rupture it at that time but it might have been infected before the first appointment anyway. Then the expression just released the infection everywhere and now Henry has an abscess. Meaning the infection actually came through his muscle wall and to the outside, creating a hole in the tissue around his butt. OMG. I know, I'm sorry to even discuss. 

So the vet had to put him under and do a 'procedure' on his abscessed anal gland, flushing it with a ton of antibiotics and cleaning it up, shaving his entire butt area, and now he gets to wear a cone for two weeks. He is extremely annoyed by this, obviously. He also has to continue his pain meds and his antibiotics for two weeks now. Apparently this is common in some dogs but poor Henry has had nine years without a procedure like this and it's hard to see him so out of sorts! He really hates his cone head. I think he believes he is above something as embarrassing as this. Poor dude has no idea I'm discussing his anal glands with the internet right now.

(You suck, mom.)
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Anyway, thoughts for our buddy appreciated. He is acting normal but is obviously freaked out. And I'm really irritated at the vet because I think the trauma of the expression on Tuesday caused too much tissue damage and then an infection set in. But whatever, of course he is going to say the infection could have been there before they worked him over. We are just getting a taste of how making decisions about our aging dog is really stressful and sad and hard. But we are lucky that he seems to be alright and hopefully has many more years left in on this earth, and ones that do not involve anal gland drama would be appreciated. 

Other DiTL posts of mine because you obviously want to read more after this! Right? ;)

Summer 2014: baby Porter is three weeks old!
Spring 2014: last one as a family of four, nice camera pictures
Winter 2014 : early second trimester of P's pregnancy

Fall 2013
Summer 2013
Spring 2013
Winter 2013

Fall 2012 (working mom of two) 
Summer 2012 (maternity leave with C) 

Summer 2010 (new working mom!)


  1. Wow. We need to go to Mexico, way sooner than March. I mean yeah, lots of good stuff in this day, but ........ life seems quite stressful right now!! Here's hoping your pup is a-ok after the surgery and stays that way for awhile, Porter sleeps consistently, and Nate never does another course again :)

  2. These day in a life posts are some of my favorites. I don't know why, but they are. Good job for getting it all down! And....poor Henry.

  3. I loved this post so much! Ah, the ups and downs of three little kids. I can *feel* the emotions through the words of this post, probably because I'm living it too!

    And I can't believe you only ate one piece of Halloween candy. Your will power must be super human. Chad and I went through an entire bag my mom brought us in two days...

    Poor Henry! Hope he's on the up and up soon.

  4. Oh your poor pup :( I hope he is back to feeling so much better by now. So so hard dealing with pet issues, especially as they get older, like you said. Sometimes I feel like pets are even harder than kids!
    Thanks for sharing you day - lots of crazy and lots of fun!
    So I have to ask…remember back when you posted your thoughts on that article about how 3 kid is the hardest number? Have you reread it at all now that you actually have 3 kids? I'm curious if your thoughts have changed at all ;)

    1. That article still bugs me---I don't believe that three kids is some sort of critical mass that is guaranteed to be the HARDEST number. At all. I still say that it depends on each individual child and their ability to sleep well, eat well, be happy, etc. Also, life feels hard right now because Nate is working a lot, I'm adjusting to working, Henry is having issues, AND I'm sleep deprived and sad that my baby won't nurse. So it's not 'hard' because I have three kids. It's hard because lots of factors in life are challenging. But good, too, of course;) And I think it's BS to say that this time in my life would be 'easier' if I had four kids instead of three.

      So yes, the article still makes me want to say that three is not The Hardest. One was challenging, two was challenging, and now three is also challenging. But I haven't ever had a good sleeper either, so there's that;) And I think three is a lot more FUN than two anyway! It's helpful to have more perspective that this too shall pass and I'm glad I didn't have a lot of expectations about how 'hard' or 'easy' this would be. I figured it would be tough for awhile!!

  5. Aren't grandparents the best! I loved reading this post as chaotic as it was! Sounds similar to my days, but I only have 2! Such cute costumes and kiddos! I am there with you on the dog issue. My dog just turned 9 and has had to get a tumor removed on her legs a few times and this time the vet recommended taking the whole leg. Yep, you read that correctly, I will now have a 3 legged dog. She is lively, friendly, the best dog to my kids and healthy otherwise that I just didn't think it was time for her to go (the vet never even suggested that option). There will have to come a time and I hope I made the right call. Tough times ahead for our aging doggies.

  6. Love this post. A word on Henry. I would find a new vet asap. There is no reason that he should have been treated the way he was and I am apt to believe that they caused the infection. (had an issue similar to this about 10 years ago with my Yorkie). Sorry that your trusted vet retired but these guys don't sound like they have a clue between them.

    Your children are the cutest!

  7. Love those comparison pics! Meant to do that this year but never got around to it. So much I want to comment on!

    LOLed at you taking your patient's garbage out. And "why is life so hard?" re: no more tp.

    Kids are obsessed with who's each other's friend and who's older and who's bigger, it's so funny. Henry always says "Truman is bigger than me but I'm older than him." In fact, just that night he, too, noted how he's five but Truman is only 4 1/2! Ha.

    We had lots of fun ToTing with you guys, thanks again for the pizza and hospitality. ;) And yes, your in-laws are ridiculously the best ever. And yes, my baby IS that mythical baby I never in a million years thought I'd have!

    Glad you did the DITL you weren't sure you were going to do!

  8. What a crazy effing day eh? I have a lot of those.. "feels like I haven't sat down since 5:00 AM days" and it can feel like a marathon but so so worth it in the end. And that happy accomplished exhaustion is kind of an awesome feeling. There was so much sweetness and loveliness mixed in with the hard.

    Your two older kids falling asleep on your shoulders at the end of the night is seriously so dang cute. That never happens with us and the few times it has... just the best. This summer Louie fell asleep on me on a boat ride at the cabin, we pulled up to the dock and I just, oh my goodness. The best. Sat on that boat for 30 minutes holding my sleeping child in a wet swimsuit and life jacket and I enjoyed every single minute.

    Your inlaws are so awesome.

    And yes, I agree with Kristal, ONE HERSHEY'S BAR? First, the fact that it was just one, and 2nd, that you chose a hershey's bar. I try not to judge, but... ;)

  9. This post legit stressed me out - although it was good to know that we're not the only crazy family from time to time!

    Poor Henry! I hope the little guy is on the mend. Some days it seems easy and other days when it rains it pours. So just pop that bottle of wine open at the end of the night and say cheers. I'll do it with you ;)

    I really need to do one of these DITL posts. I wish I had done them all along. But I always forget to take enough photos.

  10. Ugh! We are also dealing with anal gland issues. So gross! Thankfully the antibiotics helped. Feel better Henry!

  11. Iknow I should be commenting on the halloween cuteness, (i did read the whole thing!) but we had/have issues with our shih tzu anal glands. It once got infected after a grooming swelled up and same thing, abcess and all. He still has issues time to time, but we try to stay up on making sure he gets into the vet for expression same time he gets groomed, so it never gets bad.We know he's bothered by it since he's always licking,etc (ok sorry, super graphic too haha).... but yeah, dogs with butt problems blow.

  12. You are so good at these posts and it makes me wish I had done them all along. What baby monitor do you use? I really want one I can view easy on my phone.

  13. Maybe this will seem weird, but I've expressed my dog's anal glands for years. I do it once every couple of months, or when he starts doing that 'scooting' thing with his butt. It's actually super easy & so much less stressful for the dog. I got the vet to show me how to do it once & really, it's nothing.

  14. Oh, this sounded so exhausting. Lots of wonderful parts but life is just a little too much sometimes! It always seems major pet drama pops up right at times when I'm feeling like I'm operating at my full capacity and that pet stuff just pushes me over (hence me crying at a vet a time or six...) So glad you have your inlaws to rely on and also your parents when they are visiting.

    Oh - and I agree that it sounds like a new vet might be the right choice. I have never found a good one since we moved so I decided I'm going to return to our original one even though it will be a long drive. However, at this point I'm only going to take Toonses in once a year and decline all other procedures since he almost died last year getting his teeth extracted. While that was a crappy crappy thing to go through I'm glad it helped clarify where I'm at with what I want to have done now that he's an old cat. It's really hard to make those decisions.

    Other things: the kids are so adorable in their costumes and falling alseep on you guys. Speaking of sleep, hope Porter gives you long, long stretches very soon.


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