Thursday, January 31, 2013

Family TIme

Now that Andi's latest event is done and he's back at home, life finally feels back to normal. I know other people's husbands travel for work or are deployed overseas and I'm not the only in the world to experience solo parenting but dang, it sucks. I don't realize how much I'm on auto-pilot when my husband's gone for days on end. I survive; I put one foot in front of the other. I do all diaper changes, all meal times, all clean-ups, all happy and sad and fun moments and phew, it is exhausting. Whenever Andi returns from time away and helps by cleaning up the kitchen or warming up Tory's milk before bedtime, I stop in my tracks and stammer a "th-th-thank you. Wow. Thank you for helping." It never dawns on me how go-go-go my life is when he's gone until he's back and suddenly I'm not doing everything on my own.

My mom said it best last week: I don't like to be alone. I never have. I didn't like to play alone as a kid, I didn't like being by myself in college and I still don't like being alone now. Sometimes Andi's job takes him away from home for days or weeks at a time and I don't like it, but it is what it is. And when he comes back home, it makes me feel like I'm on top of the world. Absence makes the heart grows fonder and I'm reminded just how much I love that man.

Now that my world's set right again, I have so much to look forward to in the coming months. No big work commitments on the horizon for Andi means we get to spend the next few weekends at the cabin enjoying family time together. Our Mexico trip is coming up quickly and I'm so looking forward to a few quiet days alone with my husband.

Monday night, Andi came home from work early and suggested we take Tory to open swim at a nearby community center. At first I was all, "eh, I don't know. It will cut dangerously close to her bedtime and whack with our evening bath/bedtime routine..." but then I realized Andi was coming home to spend quality time with his girls. Why am I always the no-fun, rule-following parent? Who cares about the routine!

We ate dinner together, then grabbed our swim suits and drove to open swim. Tory happily babbled in the backseat the entire way there. She, too, was in such a good mood and so happy to have her Daddy home. She insisted he carry her into the community center and didn't want to let him out of her sight. We paid $3.50 for an evening pass of swimming - cheap entertainment! The community center had a great zero-entry wading pool, perfect for Tory's size, and we had the entire kiddie pool to ourselves.

Wading into the water, all by herself

Neither Andi or I could believe just how much Tory has grown. She walked in and out of the pool all by herself (with one of us right next to her, of course) and "humpty dumptied" off the ledge into Andi's arms a million times. She "kicked-kicked-kicked" her legs and blew bubbles in the water and had the best time. Tory loves the water and remembered all her skills from swim class this spring. We had a great night hanging out as a family of three.

Climbing out of the pool all by herself

I love this one - she looks like a little supermodel

Ruffle butt - is there anything cuter?


  1. As you know, I hate being alone also and I'm so glad to have found someone who shares this, um quality (??) and will hang out with me while my husband's at work! Love all the photos of Tory in the swimsuit, such a cute suit and obviously, a cute girl!

  2. Cute pictures! And where is this community center? We need to check it out.

    I'm opposite of you in my need for so much alone time, but I suspect Bella will grow up more like you & Jodi. The girl never ever ever ever ever wants to not have me next to her. Hence her joining us in our bed each and every night despite promises of toys and candy and everything. "No thanks, Mom." :)

  3. Were you at the MG pool? That place is so lovely, especially on a week night. :)

    Love Tory's swimsuit so so much!

  4. I feel ya on the solo parenting! Justin works second shifts two days a week and that is too much for me. But he is FINALLY giving me my one night off, so I'm catching up on my favorite blogs, yay!

  5. I must know this pool location too! It doesn't look like the MG pool to me tho!

  6. Best advice on the SAHM hubby traveling thing is to make your plans before he heads out of town. My hubby is gone 10 days, back for 2 or so then gone for 7 ( usually) ufffdah! I make a spreadsheet the add things in. My son sometimes has a hard time with him being gone so we tend to do the fun things like mn zoo, sea life etc to keep his mind ( and mine) off of the change! I usually avoid weekend or night time play dates when he is here but it's so nice to see people we don't normal see during the day ( working moms etc) it's exhausting but so thankful I'm able to stay home because of his job. And who knows, when T gets older you guys could tag along with him? Those are my favorite memories!!!

  7. Hey All -

    We went to the Brooklyn Center Community Center, off 694 and Silver Lake Blvd. It was really nice and they have lots of open swim times throughout the month!

    Jodi - I'm SO GLAD we became in-real-life friends. Call me anytime - you know I'm always down to hang out. :)

    Mothership - I bet Bella will be just like me, too. I vividly remember crawling into my parents bed until I was in kindergarten and when they put their foot down about sleeping in my own bed, I just crawled into my sister's bed instead. :)

    T's Mommy - Thanks for the tips. That's exactly what I did this time Andi was gone - I packed our days with activities and his time away didn't seem so lonely.

  8. That suit is so cute! Do you go with a reusable swim diaper or disposable?

  9. Caits - I use both. For swim lessons, we use a reusable swim diaper but on this particular night, I just used a disposable swim diaper.