Toddler Play Areas

Good Morning Blog readers!!  It is Monday morning and we are ready for another yoyo week of rain, snow, rain and more snow.  While mother nature has it in for us here in the wonderful state of Massachusetts with the temps bouncing between the 20’s and the 40’s we have a fun-filled week ahead.  Maybe I can witness my son doing something crazy again.  LOL

This past Saturday we  were at the local mall play area where I usually take him to play and burn some energy.  I love watching all the different children interact together.  It amazes me every time we go how many adults aren’t keeping an eye on the children they are there with.  They are playing with or talking on their phones.  In the meantime I have a toddler running around having a good time going through the tunnels and climbing into the cars and boats.  The thing that annoys me the most is when the unsupervised children are jumping off of one of the play fixtures.  It isn’t the jumping part as much as where they are jumping off.  They jump off over the tunnel holes.  I can’t count how many times I have had to either tell those kids to be careful there were toddlers and babies crawling through the tunnel.  I often wonder how much these kids get away with at home if they are so unruly and neglected in a public play area.  Sometimes I want to go up to the adults and ask them if they think it is ok for the child they are not watching to potentially jump on my baby, now toddler’s head.  I bite my tongue so far because when I ask the older kids to be careful they typically stop or at least look before jumping to make sure it is clear of littler kids.

The funniest thing I have seen my little guy do in the play area this weekend.  There was a little boy, maybe about 5 years old, starting to have a temper tantrum.  The little boy started to yell and scream with some tears because his adult told him it was time to leave.  So my little guy stops in his tracks while running around, looks at the little boy and yells at him with a growl like yell.  It really sounded like he was possessed by the demon in the exorcist.  Then my little one ran away squealing with delight.  The little boy stopped his tantrum like he was in shock, got down still sniffling, and went over to his adult to leave without a fight.  I have no idea what was said in that scary yell but it was enough to help calm the tantrum.  Now, if only I had a child to do that when my little guy is having a tantrum.  LOL

Having a PPD Moment … Getting Personal… Family, Heartbreak and Hope…

** DISCLAIMER **  I wrote this on Nov 15th and made it a private post.  It is a very emotional post and I wasn’t going to post it but, after talking to some of the women in my PPD group I have decided to make it public.  I am not the only one going through these emotions even though situations may be different the raw emotion expressed here is me to the core.  I will not apologize for my feelings as they are a part of who I am.  This post was written to help me heal a wound that had occurred as a result of events unknown to me, we are the ones who are living with and feeling the effects of someone else’s decisions that I can not control.  The person who looses the most is my son.   My follow-up post is GETTING CLOSE TO THE TIME OF YEAR WE VERBALLY GIVE THANKS…  where I thank everyone who is close in my heart.  **
As we get closer to making the big move.  I am laying out the cost and looking for places to live.  I like the idea of finding a nice townhouse to rent to start with and then we can take the time to find a nice house in my old school district.  And it looks like we should be able to make our move in about 18 months give or take a couple of months.  And as I think about moving I am excited to be closer to family and friends some, who I have known since I was a wee little girl.  This isn’t a case of “the grass is greener” but of “this grass just ain’t gettin’ greener.”  :/

We now live in a small(very small, the size of a town) city with a handful of my SO’s family around.  They aren’t as close-knit as my family is even with all the miles between us.  It makes me sad to be so close to family and not get to see them in so long.  I know everyone is busy with work and nuclear family time but my son has a cousin 6 weeks older than him who he hasn’t seen since Easter.  And that breaks my heart.  I always extend invites and many times never receive a reply.  My mind knows it isn’t anything personal, but my heart feels otherwise.  Oh well…  I keep the hope that we will see everyone before we move to NY but as time passes my heart grows weary and sad.

When I think about it I get so sad and then I think about how some people might think I have it easy being a stay home mom who gets to play with her child all day.  Let me say…  it is hard to find activities to entertain and educate our little guy all day, EVERY day, 7 days a week.  Some days I would love to have a child care provider I could drop him off at and then pick him up, even if just for 2 hours.  I love my son with all my heart and would do anything for him and anything to protect him but sometimes mommy needs a break too.  Yes, it is fun to watch his mind work every moment and yes it is nice to be able to do things with him.  Am I lucky??  Some days I really question if I am and I think that a family with 2 working parents have it easy being able to drop their child/children off to someone so they can have the daunting task of entertaining a toddler.  Usually those days are accompanied with the major meltdowns or tantrums from being frustrated.

Add in that I am not just a Stay At Home Mom(SAHM) but I am trying to launch a company using nap times as work times, staying up late working on various products, making tutorials, doing research and setting up a webstore.  My SO works 11.5 hours a day 5-6 days a week and when he gets home he has about 1.5 hours with our son before it is bedtime.  I am up until about 11pm almost every night working on business stuff that I can’t get done during the day.  The little guy wakes around 5 am but never after 6:15am.  In our house 6:15 is sleeping in.  So there’s not much time for sleep.

A little more than 2 months ago my SO had to be rushed to the hospital with chest pains.  I was scared out of my mind, I had no one I could really talk to other than his Mom, who is wonderful and I love her dearly, but she was only here in town for vacation.  We were very lucky it wasn’t his heart but it really put life into perspective for us.  We made the decision to move to NY so I could be closer to a tight-knit support group of family and friends.  It will be nice to be closer to the friends and family I left when I moved to Fl 15 years ago.  I miss my parents, my siblings (even though 1/2 are not in the area anymore), my friends who have stayed by my side even though we have had over 1000 miles between us, and all my nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins…  I look forward to all the play dates, family get togethers, “mommy” time, and having a network of fabulous people who I can call and say “hey, I am stressed out, can you help me out” and know that they will be there as soon as they can to lend a hand.

I will miss our family we have here in MA, of course, but with everyone working such crazy hours there aren’t enough hours in a day to squeeze in anyone but the nuclear family.  I have gotten really close with Sean’s Aunt and love spending time with her.  I will miss her tons and will have to teach her how to Skype.  I was asked today “How great is it that your little one has a cousin to play with who is the same age?”  I replied, “I don’t know, we haven’t seen them since a few days after Easter.”  The person responded “That is so sad, hope you see them soon.”  In that moment I felt my heart sink wondering if we will see them before we move.  I try to keep it all in and not let the emotions out but some days it is harder than others to mask my sadness, and today is one of those days.  Today I have thought about how much I miss all our family and friends near and far.  Some days I feel so isolated because I am a SAHM and feel as I and our family is not worthy of other’s time, like I am not good enough…  I work my butt off all day everyday to not only raise our son but to build a business of our own.

That is all the jumbled rant I have today.  I am sure getting this out and a good night sleep will do wonders to lift up my spirits.  In just over 6 hours I will have to smile and giggle my way through the day, “fake it till ya make it” philosophy.

 

Halloween and a Toddler – Take 1

We went to the park for our annual mother’s group Halloween Party.  It was a little chilly at about 46 degrees.  BURRRR  Our little guy was warm and toasty in his Dragon costume.  We spent most of the time running around after him and trying to keep him out of the “big” kid play area, which was clearly posted “ages 5 and over”.  He wanted nothing to do with the toddler play area.  I tried to snap a bunch of pictures and he was so fast that 95% of them are him looking away or running past me.  I was able to catch this shot by sheer luck when I was walking up to them from putting our bag down.  We had a blast and can’t wait to have him running around in his little Dragon costume for Halloween Trick or Treat and our towns annual party at City Hall.

Daddy Chasing the Dragon Around the Park

Daddy Chasing the Dragon Around the Park

Leaps and Bounds … Our Little Guy is Amazing!!

People thought I was nuts when I was pregnant buying the little guy flashcards of colors, numbers, shapes and the alphabet. Well…

I have done the alphabet cards (and the others as well) with R since he was about a year old (maybe sooner). I would tell his daddy what he was doing but the other day my heart melted. We went to visit daddy at work and I put R down so he could wander. He went to the “Paper Only” sign and pointed at the A and said “ah” then pointed at the E and said “ee”. He did it on his own with no coaching and he did it a few times. Yesterday when I showed him the “A” card he said “Ah”…”Ba”(for b)… “Ka”(like the cat minus the “t”).. “Da”.. “E” and clapped.

AMAZING how their brains are little sponges.

R is almost 20 months old 😀

REVIEW: Chuck E Cheese – Danvers, MA

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Safety Rating: ★★★★★

Cleanliness Rating: ★★★★★

Ride/Game Rating: ★★★★★

Price: $$ – low-cost, lots of fun!!

 

I took Robert to Chuck E Cheese yesterday.  WOW  What great fun!!  It is free to get in and they stamped both my hand and one for him.  His hand was a little small so they used a special sticker for his stamp with a number.  Then when we left they used a black light pen to check both my hand and his sticker to make sure we match.  I was very happy with the extra security they have in place and think more child play areas need to have this system in place.  The safety measures are one of the aspects that will make this a frequent play area for us.  They have a whole section for younger kids which was nice.  I like how there are free things for them to play and climb on.  Each ride/game is only 1 token which breaks down to 1 quarter.  the machines will give you coins for as little as 4 for $1. unlike many places which will only convert $5. and higher.

Robert had a blast on several of the kiddie rides.  He even loved the stage where Chuck E Cheese and his friends entertain.

Enjoying Chuck E Cheese

Enjoying Chuck E Cheese