Saturday, October 5, 2013

Making Good on a Saga - Part 1

Ok so I'm gonna try and make good a few blog-promises I've made.  That means I need to stop watching Jimmy Fallon youtube clips.  Or the sacrifice of over sharing my life with complete strangers. 

So the daycare saga......

When The Boy first started going to a daycare it was an in-home daycare with Schmacey's sister in law.  It was somewhat on the way to the office (back when I worked in Hell).  There were also a bunch of ancillary friend's kids there too so it was a great little community.  I loved having that for him, but as he got older we wanted more for him even though we were reluctant to change his world.  Well then there was the job changes and the new job (my current employer) who happened to be about 45 minutes away from our house and the daycare which had moved multiple times over the two years was not 20 minutes in the opposite direction making my morning commute....  Difficult. And making me.... Difficult.  So when we factored in how much we were spending on gas we figured we could search for a new place.  When we started looking around us we realized that we didn't want to just drop him off at just anyone's house and we wanted standards and accountability for the place that would be basically co-parenting The Boy.  Mind you he was smack dab in the middle of being two years old, be made the change anyways in October (a hey a year ago!). 

After some research we went with a facility that was closer to our house.  They were welcoming and offered structure and education and even though the grandma that ran the place has a mustache we felt she was warm and loving. The transition was hard.  He was sick so often which we just chalked up to new daycare, lots of germs to get immune to and then the holidays and then a relapse, maybe.  Then his sleep pattern was all sorts of jacked up.  He turned three.  Juanito was traveling a lot around that time.  We had a hundred and one different reasons for why our sweet little boy was slowly morphing into a demon child.  He finally got pee potty-trained (thank heaven for Ms. Miriam) and then moved into the Three Year Old class room.  He still had poo accidents on a daily basis.  I call him poo-potty reluctant. But in that change things just got progressively worse.  We kept saying its because he is three.   Everyone says that terrible threes are way worse than terrible twos, right? 

By early spring Juanito and I  were always trying to figure which teacher he had that day.  Who did I drop off to? Who did he pick up from?  Who was with The Boy all day long.  It was never consistent.  It was never the same room.  It was never the same.  Period.  We were getting frustrated and started talking about moving but again didn't want to change his world.  Especially when he was so difficult already, what would happen with yet another change?  We both dreaded the what-ifs.  Then we started asking The Boy if he liked his school.
Do you like your teachers?
Do you like your friends?

So how much weight do you put into what a three year old says?  A three year old who confuses hot and cold and is convinced that Cassidy is a boy.  So we started looking putting feelers out.  No commitment just window shopping. 

Then when we found out about Tiny I started looking at this facility through the eyes of dropping off my newborn.  The teachers were often outside smoking or were walking around in a smoke-cloud that never really registered until you start thinking, I'm gonna drop off my infant with this ladies?  During RSV and flu season?  Um... 

So we started looking more aggressively.  I researched the Internet and then sent Juanito out on reconnaissance.  I made up a spreadsheet (I know shocking right?).  It became a daily conversation.  DAYCARE.  We came to the conclusion that we blindly jumped the first time and now we know more and asked better questions, but we were still bound by finances that didn't allow us to pay a mortgage payment in daycare.  So we finally narrowed it down.  I sent Juanito with a list of questions.  We took The Boy to visit to get an idea of the teachers and if he liked the place. We gave notice to the old place and I go to drop off the registration for the new place.  This is when it falls apart and I cried.  The owner (a wide-eyed-no blinking-passive-aggressive-rude-bitch) informs me in the poorest manner that until The Boy is out of pull-ups completely he can't be in the Three Year class room at her facility and must be in the Twos.  Which there was a wait list for.  I was shocked that after all the visiting and conversations and questions and dialogue that this NEVER came up.  She said, "well you never asked."  I was shocked and she treated me like a hostile parent when I was really a parent out of options.  This was the place that we had carefully selected and thought was the best choice for our boys.  This was going to be the last change until The Boy started school.  THIS WAS THE ONE!

I left the facility before there was more scene then there was.  I called Juanito driving home and by the time I made it home I was a bawling mess.  What the fuck were we going to do?  Luckily it was a day I was home early from work and The Boy was still at daycare.  Juanito and I got in the car and started driving to all of the places we could think of.  We got recommendations from places and went to more places.  We OD'd on daycare interviews and show and tells.  We then had to go to a doctor's appointment where we confused asking about discipline policy and cord blood banking. 

While on our way to pick up The Boy I talked to another friend to get recommendations on one of the places we looked at and liked where her son goes to.  That's when she mentioned another place.  So while Juanito went in to get The Boy she gave me the run down on what she knew about this other place.  When they got back to the car I said hey feel like checking out one more? 

And I'm glad we were all up for it.  The daycare is also a preschool connected to a charter school that is connected to a church.  And since it was the Friday before school started when we got there they were painting and cleaning carpets, getting ready for the next school year.  When we walked in the door I was immediately hit with a smell of old building and reminded of my old church in Nebraska.  It wasn't a fake smell or an overwhelming chemical smells to make it seem clean.  It smelled like a part of my childhood.  Would it be a part of my boys too?  We spoke with the director who was in shorts and a tee shirt from cleaning all day. She was really nice and walked us around to the different classrooms.  We talked about the Three Year Old class and the Four Year Old class and the infant room (that only allows three babies at a time and luckily there is an opening coming up).  It was really good, but was it the place?

We went home and I started plugging in all of the places we looked at into my lovely spreadsheet.  That narrowed it down to the great factor which is cost.  We made the decision to start at the new daycare the following week after getting all of our registration information to the school - without incident.  How do you think it went?

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

I swear....

OK, yes it has been established over the course of this summer that I suck at juggling all the balls of employee, wife, mother, friend and blogger.  Let's move past that.  I'm working on some stuff.  I swear.

I have officially five weeks left of this pregnancy and I aim to bring you all up to date before Tiny makes his grand enterance. 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


So after many attempts to not introduce gun play into The Boy’s world, I have accepted that it is a natural part of his DNA to be fascinated by fire arms.  It might be genetic because Juanito has a substantial fascination with things that go boom and gun collection.  Well, I’m sure it’s not substantial, not by his means at least.  But having been raised in a house where there were hunting rifles and shot guns in my dad’s closet, we were raised with what I call a healthy fear of guns, so any guns are bad guns.  Don’t touch don’t handle kinda policy does that to you.  Juanito’s biological dad, who was actually present until he was seven years old, was not only a state trooper, but also retired army and marines.  Guns were a daily part of his childhood and he was raised with a healthy respect AND proper handling.  I don’t have the ease with guns around like Juanito has so we’ve agreed that no guns until The Boy (soon to be Boys) are older and understand the ramifications of handling a gun.  The specific age is still being discussed and more importantly will be determined by the maturity level of The Boy(s).  THAT we agree on. 
Therefore we did not encourage water guns or toy gun or any toy that had an aim/fire aspect to it.  But still food was aimed and freakishly accurate shooting sounds were made with forks and toys and cars and green beans.  Eventually, the term “shoot gun” came into his budding vocabulary well before other more appropriate words.  Like please, thank you, dog, Mom…..  We have enacted the point and shoot rules that you do not point and/or shoot a person or an animal.  You can shoot the house, you can shoot the bushes, the trees, but do not shoot Mom.  Or Cass.  Or Alfie.  We’ve had to pass this rule on to Grandma’s house as well. 
Last night before dinner, The Boy was outside while Juanito grilled some chicken, and came to the dinner table with a broken water gun that has spent the better portion of the Arizona summer laying in the rocks in the blaring sun.  The mere fact that this plastic thing is still together is a miracle, let alone still working.  Well, it’s not working since half of the parts are somewhere else.  But yet, The Boy was glued to the gun.  It was at the dinner table and it was next to him while he was curled up watching Disney Channel before bed.  It was a bone of contention when it was time to go to sleep and the rule “don’t sleep with your gun” was in forced.  Sometime between going to sleep and waking up the gun went missing.  Thankfully.  Because when The Boy woke up his first question was “where’s my gun?” 

I’ve read articles about the pros and cons of gun play.  I accept that this is apparently a very innate part of my son being a boy.  I know that we are teaching him good manners about gun play.  And when the time comes that Juanito gets to take him shooting for the first time he will be taught the right and wrong way to handle a gun and himself around a gun.  Until then I am sorry if my child shoots you with his green bean, fork, sun-eaten pieces of a water gun or even just his hand. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


So I've really sucked at this whole blogging thing lately haven't I?  Well my apologies to the pygmies.  I would say that life has been busy these days between raising a three year old and growing a baby, but damn it, I know other bloggers who are doing it and taking super cute belly photos in their maxi dresses.

I for one will not be rocking a maxi dress.  Its August in Phoenix where the 120 degrees has been replaced with 70% humidity and 107 degrees and the idea of a maxi dress screams swamp ass and diaper rash.  Lo siento friends for that visual instead. 

My other reason for not claiming that I've been too busy is because we're about to get a whole lot busier.  I was emailing a friend the other day and it all came tumbling out that between the upcoming nuptials of a friend and all that goes along with that and other planned events we have about 5 weeks left to get ready for Tiny's arrival.  You see The Boy was four weeks early.  I had my damn shower a week before he showed up.  Poor planning on my part maybe, but totally unexpected.  Regardless of what my mother thinks. 

So my goal this time is to have everything done before I turn 36 weeks.  This means I've got to get my expanding ass in gear. Oh, and this time I have this stupid ass idea to make the crib bedding.  Because I'm a slave to Pinterest I guess.  Hell, I even made an idea board.  Like this is some fashion line I'm creating.  But Tiny's room, if you go by the idea board, is gonna be awesome.  Now, my iffy execution will be a completely different story.  So we need to paint and sew and put the crib back together.  We need to wash clothes and see what we need this time around.  We need to buy a few items.  We didn't find out until the end of bottles with The Boy that Dr. Brown's bottles worked well for his reflux so we only have two.  We're gonna need a few more.  Lots to do and time is dwindling down.  Have I mentioned the daycare saga?  Oy.  That is its own post within its self.  I think I'll save that little morsel until there is a happy ending.  Right now, not yet.  But fingers crossed!

To add insult to injury, I guess, I am super tired these days.  Tiny is sucking the life out of me.  For example, I swear to all that is holy that I made the bed on Sunday and sorted laundry and fell asleep for and hour and a half.  Its ridic.  We had a window installer at the house a couple of weekends ago replacing the upstairs windows and I fell asleep on the couch.  All white trash with my pregnant belly handing out.  I didn't have the common courtesy to at least snore my head off in the privacy of my own room.  Juantio apologized and explained that pregnancy takes a lot out of me.  How kind. 

So yes, lots to do, little energy to do it and not a lot of time.  For some this is when they shine.  For me this is when I get canker sores from stress.  Oh, and the list making is in full swing.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Here and we're all kicking

So I kinda went a little MIA there for a while didn't I?  Well, its hard to explain.  So I won't. Just suffice it to say that this pregnancy has been leaps and bounds different from The Boy's time in the womb. 

I am very grateful for the small handful of people who i have shared this with and have helped me through these tough times.  Their understanding and compassion has made it easier.  I am also blown away by my husband.  He has sat with me through things that are way beyond either of our skill levels and seen us both through to the other side.   You never think that you will be the living embodiment of your vows, but in these good times and the bad and through sickness and in health, Juanito has been by my side. 

He has really stepped up and taken on more than I ever thought I would be comfortable with.  I hate feeling like I am incapable and he has somehow found a way to take on without making me feel incapable.  He even has started making some dinners.  I will just gloss over the pan of burnt refried beans I found in the sink after I came home and said the house smelled like burnt beans and you tried to say it was the new a/c filter.... 

I love you beyond words Juanito. 

FB Post:  Levi is going to be a ........
Since it hasn't been all rainbows and kittens lately, I will focus on the good stuff.  We announced our pregnancy on Facebook which makes it more official than any test results, countless ultrasounds and board certified doctors.  We got 65 likes.  Because those things matter. 

Of course always the marketing person, I had to take a poll of friends, family, and people I once knew, to see what the general consensus was for gender,  It was like 85% girl.  So we went a few days later for the big ultrasound.  Baby was all stretched out with arms up around the head and ankles crossed, like my uterus is a hammock.  The u/s tech wasn't sure if she would be able to see the gender or not.  Baby eventually moved and before the tech could say any thing I gasped.  She said, "do you see it" and Juanito said, "Is that a turtle?"  That's when we get to post to FB that we're having a ....
Photo taken on our trip to California just in case you
thought there were beaches in Phoenix.

So when Levi was baking we called him Senor.  In fact we called him Senor even after we came home from the hospital with him.  So I said we need to find a nickname for this little one (the actual name has been a struggle!).  We didn't like Junior or anything like that. So while giving The Boy a bath, Juanito asked him what we should call the baby.  The Boy said Tiny, but he said it in a really small squeaky voice and hunched his shoulders up to his ears and pinched his thumb and fore finger together.  He doesn't really understand whats going on yet.  Or what is going to happen to his world in a few months.  He is convinced that he has the baby in HIS stomach.  Boy, is he sadly mistaken.

So here is Tiny.  He wasn't cooperative for the complete ultrasound so we get to go back.  I swear this kid has had so many photos taken of him so far.  He will probably be a camera hog when he comes out too!  Oh he is a movin' and a grovin' and he is measuring 4 days bigger than expected so they moved my due date up.  Fine by me!

Tiny Reynolds

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Not A Father's Day Post about my Dad

See this guy?
Dad drinking his first and probably last martini at my cousin's wedding.

This is my dad and I would have to say that I adorn this picture of him.  He isn't a silly kind of person. He is very pragmatic and has a cut-to-the-chase way of talking.  Even if he goes about it in a meandering kind of way. 

For example, I called my dad last week to plan to do something for Father's Day.  There is a steak house down town that has a pretty damn good steak and is vetted in history of Phoenix, which is hard to come byin a valley that is only 100 years old.  Ever since I went there I have wanted to take my dad.  So when I called him and asked if he wanted to go out to eat on Saturday night his response was slow but eventually to the point. 

"Well you know a week before I went to Nebraska I lost the bridge on the top teeth."  Mind you his trip was at the beginning of June. "I went to the dentist and they glued in back in.  Then the day I left for Nebraska the bottom bridge fell out. I figured I would have them glue it while I was in Nebraska.  But you know that dentist there wanted to take xrays and everything so I just said forget it."  Shocking that the dentist would want to see your teeth before just gluing back in a piece that might have fallen out for a reason.  "So when I got back in town I went to the dentist over here and he said that before they could fix that I needed a root canal.  On two teeth.  So I'm going to the dentist on Friday to have both root canals done and then go back on the 26th for them to put the bridge back in." 

"Holy cow Dad, are you going to be able to eat steak?"

"Well" But mind you Dad's "wells" have always sounded more like an exhale than a word, "I don't know."

"Have you ever heard of The Stockyard?  That's where I want to take you."

"You know when I was in Nebraska at the reunion" His 50th high school reunion, "there was this guy who was in the class above me. We started talking.  He married this girl who was in my class.  They have a daughter.  He was saying how their daughter lives in Peoria and asked if I knew where 91st Avenue and Deer Valley was.  I said well that's about a mile away from me.  Well her and her husband manage the Texas steak house or what ever" Texas Roadhouse, "over at I17 and Dunlap."

"So do you want to go to Texas Roadhouse then instead of The Stockyards?" The historical, expensive renowned prime choice cuts of beef Stockyard?  You want to go to a chain???

"Well, what ever works."

We went to The Stockyard and Dad ate a huge medium rare prime rib steak.  He said it was good but nothing like what you could get in Nebraska.  Ok love you Dad.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

I'm going somewhere with this and I hope to get something free at the end

So the Internet and the conspiracy theorists are up in arms about the PRISM project.  Well this is what Google Analytics is all about, people.  Why are you so mad?  If the government paid someone else to do it, thus pushing capitalism further, then would it be ok?  Oh, wait they did pay someone since he was a contractor.

Anywho, a few weeks ago I was googling wainscoting because I have big plans for our upstairs bathroom.  (I might have made a pretty big topic leap there but I'm going somewhere with this, hold on.)

I am envisioning (on my mental vision board) bright turquoise and gold fish orange and bright white wainscoting in the bathroom no one uses.  And some shade over that damn window above the bath that makes that room a sauna every summer.  This is not the reason that we no longer use this bathroom. Oh, no.  The Boy has decided that our bath tub is infinitely more fun.  Why?  I don't know.  He gets these ideas in his head and there is no shaking it.  Perhaps when the baby comes he'll change his oh so stubborn (yet familiar) mind.  God I hope its for the better. 

 Anyways, like I said I've got plans for that room.  They also involve doing something with this random closet in the bathroom.  I think we would be better served with a cabinet of some sort but not sure how to turn it into a closet.  I'm sure Juanito could MacGyver his way to see it done, but I need him on other projects.  Namely the storage under the stairs.  We had this great idea to open up the closet down stair, that people in my family would call the hall closet, into the space under the stairs to allow for more storage.  Living in Phoenix the attic is not an ideal storage area for things you don't want to melt. 

So a while ago Juanito employed my dad to come over and the punched through the wall into the long forgotten area.  But apparently our great idea was not a common vision.  Now we have a little hobbit door that one has to belly crawl through in order to get to the secret lair, I mean the storage area. Not exactly how I would have done it.  I know that Juanito has visions of prepping for the end of the world or the zombie apocalypse, but really I just want a place to store my wedding dress and family heirlooms and holiday decorations without fear that they will melt into one festive jumble, instead of stockpiling canned peaches and air-tight drums of rice. I need the stuff from the "put it in the spare room" room to be transferred somewhere else so that we can make it "the baby's room."

Point being, I think we have jumped past nesting and landed feet first in demolition and reconstruction phase of the pregnancy.  Also the latent food aversion has subsided to I want to eat everything.  And right now it must be fried and saddled with chocolate of the cold, frozen kind. 

So what does any of this have to do with PRISM?  Well, I was watching something enriching and educational on YouTube the other day (I think it was all of the songs from Pitch Perfect) and every video I clicked on had a five second commercial about wainscoting...coincidentally it was the company that I was reading about a few weeks ago.  This is marketing in the digital age.  This is Google taking what you search, selling this data to companies so that they can better target their advertising.  This isn't THE MAN watching your every move.  This isn't Big Brother coming for you Orson Welles and Ayn Rand.  This is capitalism at its finest. 

Now if only I could get some free wainscoting out of this post.....