Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Feeling the pressure

I go back to work in 2 weeks.  TWO WEEKS!  Blurg.  I wish I felt differently but to be honest, I'm fighting back a rising panic and my anxiety levels are through the roof.  Paul has heard way too much preemptive whining on my part about how hard it is going to be.  I want to just enjoy this time and not freak out about how Clara will do in daycare, but the past two times I took her to the gym with me it was pretty rough.  As in, she cried so much that the staff came and got me off the treadmill both times because she wouldn't calm down.  Which at first seemed totally weird since I have been taking her to the gym on a regular basis since she was 6 weeks old and she never had any problems with it before.  But then, I know that she is reaching the stage where separation anxiety kicks in and that it is totally normal fo tiny tots to experience it and that she will be just fine.  Paul and I are going on our first childless date this Saturday (to our ward holiday dinner for adults only) and we have hired a babysitter, so we will see how that goes. 

The thing is, Clara doesn't cry.  Like, ever.  She fusses when she gets hungry but it never even comes close to a wail.  So when I have handed her over to friends recently and her little lower lip starts to quiver and her eyes fill with tears of betrayal, I seriously feel like the worst parent in the world.  What kind of monster am I that I would take the happiest baby ever and intentionally do something (like let somebody else hold her) that would make her sad?  I'm just praying that she gets over the anxiety quickly.

I find myself racing to complete projects in my remaining time off work:
  • finish making Christmas presents for my nieces and nephews (why did I decide to hand sew the most darling elephants you've ever seen for each of them?  I should have just bought them each a book.)
  • finish Christmas shopping for everybody else (I'm getting close to being done, thank goodness.  Paul and I love making lists of each person we are getting gifts for and writing our idea next to their names.  It is one of those little traditions that we have developed that has become one of my favorite things.)
  • make a whole bunch of meals to put in the freezer for when I go back to work so I have one less thing to stress about (we just bought a stand-up freezer on Craigslist for our garage so that we have more space in our freezer, so if anybody has any good recipes or links to recipes that freeze well, please send them my way!  Especially if you have good crockpot meals where you can throw all the ingredients in a freezer bag so that I can just empty the bag into the crockpot as I am heading out the door for work.)
  • finish making my blog books (I'm using Blurb to make books of all of my posts from previous years, which is something I have been wanting to do for a long time.  Turns out it is more time-consuming than I would have thought but I have to finish by November 30th so I can use my 20% off coupon.)
Then there are all the smaller things like cleaning the house, fulfilling my new calling (did I mention on here that I was just called to be the 2nd Counselor in Young Womens' in my ward?  Happy dance!), blogging, ordering Christmas cards, decorating for the holidays, straightening up the office, etc.  Gosh, I'm overwhelmed just thinking about all of it.  I keep making mental lists of all this stuff in my head and then remembering tasks that I forgot to add to the mental list and I know I am going to drop the ball somewhere and miss Clara's next doctor's appointment or leave the drycleaning at the cleaner's for a month or something. 

I actually sat down to write about our fun weekend and post cute photos but look what just spewed out.  And now Clara is awake so I need to feed her and then get ready super fast for 9:00 a.m. visiting teaching.  And Paul came back into the house and told me that his truck was vandalized last night (a section of pipe underneath his truck was cut off I guess - the same thing happened to one of our friends in Utah Paul says) and he needed to take my car to work today so I am without transportation.  Cute photos about fun times coming later I guess.

Heaven help me, today feels like it is going to be one of those days.


  1. One of my friends from grad school just emailed me (they had a baby a few months before us) and said, "It's hard to balance work and baby no matter what you do, don't you think?" Good luck these last couple of weeks. I hope you can enjoy the time you have without out stressing too much. :)

  2. Oh Amy, I'm so sorry you are stressed out. It probably doesn't feel like it now, but things will work out and you will find a new normal. I have days like you are describing all the time, but then the next day I will be super productive and everything will feel much better. You can do it!

  3. So sorry to hear you are stressed out. Ditto to the above comments. Clara is a lucky girl to have such wonderful parents. Congrats on the new calling. You will be great! Here is one of my favorite crockpot recipes. You basically have to chop an onion and open a bunch of cans and dump it in the crockpot. We substitute a combo of chicken stock and gingerale for the beer. Limes are also a must have for a finishing touch.


  4. Oh - and here's one of our favorites for the crock pot:

    Put 1 T chili powder, 1 T garlic chunkies (minced?), 1/2 t ground cumin in olive oil in a saucepan and heat. Add to 4 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth, add 1 can pumpkin (smaller can) and 1 can chickpeas and 1 cup corn and 3/4 cup salsa (all of this can be in the crockpot or on the stovetop). Top with cheese or sour cream or both.

    Also - Costco has cans of roast beef that make stew preparation a little faster.

  5. The holiday season always seems to get a little stressful and busy, but I'm sure your situation makes it even more so. You are super woman though so knowing you, you will find a way to get it all done! I always see links on pinterest for crock pot and freezer meals. Here is a crock pot one for you:

    Dice two tomatoes and two Anaheim chiles. Get a rump or chuck roast and slather it with laury's season salt & cumin. Throw it all in the pot and cook on high for 6-7 hours (or maybe all day on low since I'm sure you'll be away from the house longer than that). Shred the meat and serve with tortillas, gauc, sour cream, salsa, cheese ect.


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