5 Things I Learned in 2015

It’s the first second week of January, which means it’s time to quit coffee for a week or two, pay for a gym membership and make a list of things that need to be cleaned in my house. Of course I’m not actually going to do any of those things, but its the time of year where it’s important to PRETEND like I’m going to.

new years

I’ve mentioned before that my extended family has a pretty serious New Years Resolution protocol. Everyone has to submit at least 2-3 resolutions via email in January, and then get publicly graded on them the following New Years Eve. I win pretty much every year because I almost always accomplish all of my resolutions. Wanna know what the secret is? I only make resolutions that I actually want to accomplish.

I know you’re sitting there saying well I AM motivated to lose 10 pounds. But that’s not what I’m talking about. You might be motivated to lose 10 pounds, but do you really want to give up pizza and ice cream? No, no you don’t. Because nobody does. You might be able to force yourself to do it – but nobody WANTS to do it.

I make resolutions that I actually want to do (get more sleep) or know for sure I’m going to do anyway (run a 5k race that I’m already signed up for) – or my personal favorite, lose any amount of weight, which only works when you know you’re going to deliver a baby that will weigh some amount at some point in 2016.

Mia Kissing Lucy

It’s a solid strategy and it has paid off for me year after year. Hilariously, Dan tried to adopt my strategy last year and made only one resolution: brew more beer. What he failed to predict is that he would have a psycho wife with a honey-do list 30k things long and not have even one second to brew beer. Bringing him in last place with 0% of his resolutions accomplished. Ha!

New Year New Snow

Anyway, since I only make resolutions I’m going to do already, they’re pretty boring to write about. So instead of predicting what I’m going to do better in 2016, I’ve decided to compile a list of the 5 most important things I learned in 2015.

See, I’m a smarter person already. Let’s do this 2016!

#2015bestnine

5 Things I Learned in 2015

1. Don’t sign your kid up for sports until they’re old enough to do it without you.

You might remember how well swimming lessons went for Mia and I a year ago. Well after a year of time off, I became delusional and thought maybe it was just the pool that made swimming lessons such a fucking nightmare. So I signed Mia up for gymnastics. She’s in the 1-3 year old class, which means the parents have to participate too. If you’re trying to imagine what a gymnastics class full of 1-3 year olds looks like, just picture trying to corral 15 drunk chihuahuas inside a bounce house in the middle of a hurricane. Or climbing out of a foam pit while 10 trillion weeks pregnant. The only upside is that Coach Paul is pretty much a professional child wrangler. And in one year I’ll be able to play on my iphone in the lobby while Mia jumps on top of every apparatus in the gymnasium except the one she’s supposed to be on like a wild monkey on catnip – and it will be some high school gymnastics instructor’s problem, not mine. At least the outfits are cute though.
Gymnastics

2. Don’t bother cleaning your house if you live with a toddler.

Cleaning a house with a toddler in tow is like raking your lawn in the middle of a tornado. If you don’t believe me, click play. Make sure you have the sound on for full effect.

Uh oh is right. #toddlersareevil #thisiswhyimalwayslate #averageparentproblems @averageparentproblems

A post shared by Hannah Richards (@ohbabyrichards) on

3. If your kid says they have to go potty at midnight, they’re lying.

I know this seems pretty obvious…but when you’re SO desperate for your kid to be potty trained you convince yourself that maybe they did just wake up in the middle of the night and decide for the first time in weeks they want to pee on the potty. Maybe this is it. Maybe now they’re finally on board.

Potty Training

Yea…NO.

4. Daycare drop offs are awful.

This also probably seems like an obvious one, but since Mia has been in daycare since 10 weeks old, we never really had to experience the screaming, crying, “Mommy don’t go!” drop offs. When we first started sending Mia to daycare she was too young to know what was going on. By the time she was old enough to understand, she saw Melissa (her daycare provider) as a family member – and would run inside eagerly, only kissing me goodbye if I begged her and Melissa insisted. She did sometimes cry when I told her it was time to go home, though.

Fast forward to this past November, and we transitioned Mia to a home daycare closer to our house. For the first time in her whole life, we left her with someone she didn’t know – and let me tell you, she didn’t take it very well.

Neither did I.

For weeks our brave little girl didn’t even cry. She would hang her head as soon as we pulled in the drive way, purse her quivering little lips, and refuse to talk or make eye contact with anyone, lest a runaway teardrop escape. She obeyed my every request – taking her shoes off, coat on the hook, sitting down with the other kids. She even kissed me goodbye. But she never looked up – turning her head away as one rogue tear made it’s way down her cheek. As I closed the door to leave I caught a glimpse of the flood gates letting loose. She was beside herself, but in the most heartbreaking way ever, refused to let me see.

I found out later she cried all day.

My heart literally broke in two. I was ready to quit my job, sell our house and stay home with her.

Everyone else told me to wait it out. It would get better. It was normal. She would be better for the experience.

Of course they were right and now she runs right in and forgets to kiss me goodbye. But I don’t think I’ll ever forget those first couple drop offs – or be able to tell the story without crying.

Dropping your baby off at daycare is for sure the hardest part of being a Momma.

5. Even the sassiest toddlers are sometimes sweet.

As much as Mia’s daycare drop offs hurt my heart (“Mommy I needed you! I cried for you…”), they also made me want to squeeze her even tighter when I got home. But it was nothing a healthy dose of incessant whining couldn’t cure. After a 9 hour work day, coming home to a demanding and overtired toddler was enough to make me cool with sending her back to daycare the next day. But then just when I was ready to start researching toddler boarding schools, she did this:

It’s the third night of Hanukah, and Dan and I are practicing our tradition of telling each family member (including Mia and Harley, even though neither of them ever pay attention) one thing we love about them, in lieu of a physical gift.

hanukah

Dan: Mia, one thing I love about you, is how brave you are.

Hannah: Harley, one thing I love about–

Mia: One thing I love Daddy for is he plays outside with me!

My heart literally exploded. Totally unprovoked, completely thought through, and heartwarmingly honest.

Even the sassiest toddlers are sometimes sweet.


 

33 weeks

How far along? 34 weeks (most recent picture was from 33 weeks)

Total weight gain: 25 pounds. I know, I know. BUT, that’s 2 less pounds than I had gained at this point in my pregnancy with Mia. So…hope floats.
Maternity clothes? sweatpants
Sleep: no
Best moment this week: so much has happened since my last blog post that this is more like best moment in the last two months…but I think it would have to be experiencing the holidays through the eyes of a toddler. Seriously, nothing better. Except maybe the 10 minutes after I spent the entire day cleaning my house, before Dan and Mia came home and restored it to its original condition.

IMG_0109 IMG_0108 IMG_0330 IMG_0331
Miss Anything? tequila. don’t judge.
Movement: all the time, but as uncomfortable as it can be, I’m trying to relish the last few weeks (probably ever) that I’ll feel someone move inside me. So bizarre, so wonderful. So crazy that this is it.
Food cravings: nothing really – but I still use cravings as an excuse to eat dessert for breakfast.
Anything making you queasy or sick: how dirty my house is.
Labor Signs: lots and lots of Braxton Hicks contractions
Symptoms: acid reflux, heartburn, lower back pain, feeling like I pulled every muscle in my stomach….you know, the usual
Belly Button in or out? OUT
Wedding rings on or off? Still on
Happy or Moody most of the time: happy, nervous, excited
Looking forward to: A little “babymoon” weekend away with Dan…our first overnight together without Mia since she was 3 months old. I KNOW.


Oh, and I also made a (really quickly thrown together and poorly edited) video because I took a lot of cute photos in 2015 and putting them to music in iMovie gets way more people to look at them. But then, I forgot I never shared this Oakhurst video, which was put together by a real video production team from the leftover Oakhurst commercial footage that Mia and I shot last Spring. I just found it while digging though my old itunes files and I feel so lucky to have this to watch over and over again when Mia is a psycho teenager and hates me.

Here’s both videos, for those of you with lots of time on your hands.

XOXO

 

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