So where have I been? Huh. Well, to say that 2014 was a little crazy is a wild understatement. 2014 was hard in ways I didn't expect. After Olive was born (the highest of highs for the year), it felt like we were constantly on the go. In April I went back to work and Rykert stayed home on parental leave. We were starting to get into a groove and then it was time for him to go back. We had finally adjusted to that change and the dual daycare drop-offs when, in early September, he ripped his hamstring and the surgery and recovery relegated him to crutches for 2 months. Phew. Then it was time for the holidays. I think we're just now finally getting our bearings.
It's been hard to figure out how to care for 2 kids with very different needs, work full-time, manage my husband's opposite night shift schedule, keep the house from looking like an episode of Hoarders, and cook dinner (most) every night. Plus, because I lack judgment, I signed Scout up for dance and swim lessons this fall. Adding extra crazy. I spent a few months in pure survival mode. And Olive is a happy and sweet baby with many adorable and charming traits and we couldn't love her more, but she has not been a champion sleeper. There were a few months where I was functioning on less than 4 hours of sleep. I complained about it, but I know the day is coming when she won't want me to rock her so I tried to remember that as much as I could. Because those baby moments? They're already fading away. She's finally, at almost 1 year, turned the corner on sleep and things have improved, and it's amazing what reliable sleep can do for everyone. We realized the poor thing has had fluid behind her ears for a long time and her ear infections aren't clearing up, so she's getting a shiny set of tubes next week.
Now don't get me wrong. We've had lots of help from family and from our capable and reliable daycare, and Rykert, when able-bodied, is a champion co-parent. But I still don't know if I'm coming or going some days. A couple of weeks ago I drove to daycare to drop the girls off even though they were at home with Rykert that morning and I had just kissed them goodbye minutes before. I spent 5 minutes in the parking lot last week trying to unlock and open my car door only to realize, way later than normal, that it was not, in fact, my car. I think we're finally finding our groove and finding a true routine. So it hasn't been easy. No one said it would be. But it's been worth it, more than I could have imagined, and I'm coming out of the fog. Which brings me to the blog...
Last spring, something(s) had to give. I was killing myself trying to do everything or at least trying to do everything at the same time. Sometimes, things have to take a back seat. Taking care of myself and my family always take the priority. Work next. And unfortunately, the blog, and a few other things, fell off the list entirely. There just weren't enough hours in the day when I was collapsing in bed at 8:30, up 3 or more times each night, and then at work all day. So instead of blogging with excuses and complaining about how tired I was, things just went completely silent.
But I'm back. I think. Maybe. At least I'm going to give it a try. I've been spending most of my social media time on Instagram. In fact, I read very few blogs these days. Instagram and Pinterest help filter the blog content I actually want to see, because there's a lot more noise on the internet than there was when I started my internet addiction in the early 00s.
Which leads me to another point. Blogs. When I started blogging in 2004 (holy cow that's 10+ years ago), blogs were just online journals of varying quality. People primarily shared their hobbies and interests, their fandom, and their political observations. Very few people were making money from their blog in the beginning. But blogs have gotten slick and monetized and fancy. And, in my opinion, there generally isn't always a direct correlation between these changes and quality of the content. There's a lot of really poor writing (that people think is book deal worthy) on blogs (maybe you think this is one of those), and in some instances, a general denigration of content driven by the need to post X times a week to keep traffic up. In short, blogging became a big (sometimes) money business and little hobby spaces like this don't seem to have a niche anymore.
So I really don't know what is to become of this space. Oddly enough, this blog still gets fairly significant traffic, particularly for a basically defunct blog. This is thanks, entirely, to traffic coming from Pinterest on a few tutorials I've done over the years (e.g., the mermaid tail, all the costumes). It's amazing to me, really. And exciting. I'd love to do more so I can write more, but doing and writing take time.
Finally, I need to add that I'm very cognizant that my whining in the first few paragraphs is representative of first world problems in the first degree. This has not been a crisis. I am beyond lucky to have two healthy kids, a stable job, food on our table, clean water, and more than we need. And I'm certainly not implying that staying at home full-time would have been any easier, because it's all work. And balance. And working outside the home or staying home, it's all hard sometimes.
Back soon.... I hope.