Photo Shoot…and other at home fun!
I literally don’t know WHAT I have been so busy doing all day, every day, that I can’t manage to get this post done! OK, I do know one thing that I’ve been working on…… staging Christmas card pictures! All you need for this project is:
1. a cooperative baby
2. a camera
3. a string of lights
4. a laundry basket
5. a santa hat
6. a sense of humor
The first rule, about having a cooperative baby, we totally nailed! I made sure to work on this immediately following a nap. He manages himself best after sleeping/eating. But, just because he was cooperative DOES NOT mean that he smiles. Like, ever. I mean, he will smile and laugh sometimes, but not for a picture. Especially not for a Christmas card picture.
After we’d had our fun in the basket, I moved FVB to the floor to explore with the lights (naked, of course) while I happily snapped away. After a few minutes of this, I began to wonder if perhaps letting him chew on something that was plugged in was a bad idea. Also, were the lights getting a bit warm on his skin? And, would I end up with ANY pictures where his penis WASN’T showing?? (As you can see above, the penis is very artfully concealed by the lights).
I pretty much laughed through this whole project. Wouldn’t you? I also enlisted hubs to help and we shot some photos outside as well. Clothed, not naked.
If you are on our Christmas card list, you pretty much see what you are going to get. Sorry.
Anyway, the original point of my post was to talk about how wonderful it is being able to stay at home. Clearly, I use my time VERY wisely.
OK, getting back on track to my original plan for this post…..
DISCLAIMER: There are clearly a lot of things that AREN’T awesome about being an at home parent. I am stressed out a lot. I have days when I would LOVE to be able to go into an office and work on a computer. Some days, I am counting the hours until hubs comes home and he has FVB in his arms almost instantly. But I read too many of these types of articles, all about how stressful and crazy begin at home with small children is. So we’re focusing on the positive today.
Obviously the most important thing about being at home is that I am forming a bond with FVB that just couldn’t happen if he were being cared for by someone else for most of his waking hours. But there are some not-as-important, but just as nice, benefits to being at home. Here are a few:
1. Getting dressed is so simple (if I get dressed at all). I love that I don’t have to stare at the closet each morning and decide on an outfit. Back in my working days, when I had to get dressed in a presentable outfit, there were always so many questions: Does this match? Is it comfortable? What shoes will I wear? Did I wear this yesterday? Not having to put on “real” clothes is beyond amazing. All the jokes about stay at home moms and yoga pants are true. But WHY make fun of something so damn perfect?? They are comfy, versatile, and can pass as “real” pants with the right top and shoes. I even wore them to school towards the end of my pregnancy because I was so desperate to be comfortable. I start and end everyday in yoga pants (some days I do attempt to get dressed in regular pants for the middle portion of the day). As a bonus, my obsession with yoga pants and the joy of a simple wardrobe prompted me to go through my closet and get rid of about 50% of it. Then, in an attempt to have a few non-yoga choices, I bought staple items on sale at the Gap with my birthday money: 2 pairs of well fitting, nice looking jeans, several basic long and short sleeved t-shirts, and a fitted, stretchy, perfect-for-breast-feeding button up white shirt that matches everything. Combined with what was left of my wardrobe, I feel like I have everything I need. Not having a job to get dressed for every day gave me the courage to ditch anything in my closet that I didn’t like; I had no worries about “not having anything to wear,” because I didn’t actually HAVE to get dressed the next day. Now have a neat, organized closet (thanks mom!) filled with realistic choices that I will actually wear (when I get out of my yoga pants).
2. My schedule is WIDE OPEN. When I was working full time, life was so damn complicated. Most days I felt like I was just getting by and minor things like traffic and laundry were threatening to drive me crazy. My daily must dos outside of work were exercising, cooking, and spending time with hubs. If I had ANYTHING outside of that to do (doctor’s appointments, oil changes, phone calls, etc), it all had to happen after 4 o’clock. Like most teachers, and probably most people in general, my schedule was not flexible, so I couldn’t do lunch appointments or come late/leave early to take care of “stuff.” To be honest, I never really loved my job. If I had, I think I would have been able to better manage the daily stresses of life and wouldn’t have resented all that I couldn’t do because I had to work. Do most people feel like this? I don’t know, but I know that I LOVE my job as mommy now and it’s changed how I feel about everything else, too. Now, I love calling to make appointments and saying, “any day is good” or “I’m flexible on time.” I can wait on hold with the electric company while playing on the floor with FVB or get the first appointment of the day at the doctors office to avoid back ups. Also, I get extra time with people I love. Hubs is home for lunch most days and I’m here to prepare and enjoy it with him, I’m free to Face Time with out of town family, and I can get coffee or walk with my girlfriend who works from home. I can walk the dogs every day, exercise, and cook to my hearts content knowing that this is all part of my “job.” I feel like my life, in some ways, has slowed down. I can focus on the joy of raising my son without being too frazzled about everything else (I still hate waiting in hold though).
3. Weekends are relaxing. Back when we were both working, we absolutely LOVED weekends and certainly had our share of fun and enjoyed relaxing often. However, we fell into a pattern. Fridays we were always both exhausted from the week and usually ended up doing take out on the couch with a movie. We often met friends for dinner, drinks, or brunch, but the rest of the weekend seemed to fill up with chores. House cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry, projects around the house…all of the stuff you never have time for during the week. By Sunday, I would always get the end of weekend blues (again, didn’t love my job enough to overcome this) and would be rushing to get life in order for the upcoming week. Now, we can enjoy relaxing together and taking FVB places without the pressure of getting things done. Hubs definitely helps clean and such as needed on the weekends, but it’s much less than before because I can do it throughout the week (mostly). Also, we can do fun things like dress our baby up in too tight clothes and take his photo.
OK, that’s definitely it on the pictures! We are traveling for Thanksgiving and what I really should be doing is packing and organizing and preparing for that trip. Unless I come up with another great photo shoot idea…..