The Olympics…what’s the big deal?

Like the rest of the United States, I have been watching NBC’s terrible coverage of the XXX Summer Olympics.

{Relax, mom, in this case XXX is for “30th” not “triple x”. I’m not watching naughty shows and then BLOGGING about it.  That would be INSANE.}

Anyway, I have also been throwing my opinion on the twitter for the world to not care about.

Recently, Alex of Late Enough and I decided these events really didn’t look all that hard. I mean, we could totally do some of these things.

And so we decided to vlog it.

 can’t see the video?  Go here.

I don’t think this  needs further explanation.

Now go see what events Alex is taking on over at Late Enough.

*video music is “Olympic Platinum” by Pearl Jam

the cue

ahhhhh GO!

He runs full speed down the hallway in just a diaper.  His run is more of a prance and his blond curls bounce in rhythm to his quick trot.

Smack!  He gets to the end and both hands slap the wall.

When he turns he is all smiles and eye twinkles.

He backs up straight and tall with his back and palms flat against the wall, and pauses to make sure I am ready.

This is my cue.

I snap my arms and legs open toward him.

This is his cue.

MA MA!  GO!

He leans forward and with complete trust, rushes down the hall toward me.

His giggle melts me.

I can’t wait for him to get to my embrace.

His curls blow back from his face revealing the gleam of joy in his eye.

He doesn’t slow his pace as he approaches, flinging himself with all his force into me.

There is no fear of hurt.

He trusts me completely.

And in an instant, we are one person.

I wrap him up in me, close my eyes, and fall backwards.

We are one like we were in the beginning.

Our hilarity and tears and mischief are the same.

Time stops, but our merriment does not.

He has buried his face in my neck and wrapped his arms around me.

He is gasping for breath through giggles.

I am filing these feelings away into my heart.

His hair will not always be this soft and silky and blond.

His fingers will not always have the little dimples instead of knuckles.

His feet will not always be round and smooth.

He will not always smell of baby lotion and graham crackers.

He will not always trust me so freely.

Running into his mom’s arms will not always be his first choice.

I lie on my back and release him.

He scoots down and takes my hand and instructs me in his gibberish to sit back up.

Once I am up, he decides to lean in one more time before starting the game again.

Awww Ma Ma!

He hugs me and bends in to touch his nose to mine.

And with a snap, he turns to run back down the hall.

Ahhhh GO!

A blur of giggles, curls, and baby skin goes running from me.

My smile twitches.

And my heart makes a promise to that boy.

I will always be here for you to run back to.  My arms will always snap open for you.  Just give me the cue.

you said it, kid.

Dear Eddie,

I just put you down for your last nap of our spring break together, and I am sad about it.

No really, I am.

You might think I am a horrible mother for saying this, but I dreaded spring break.

Oh, I needed the break from work badly, but the idea of staying home alone with you every day and not having a break gave me so much anxiety.

When you were born, the two of us were home alone together for almost three months.

It did not go well.

Daddy got laid off when you were four months old and stayed home with you for 17 months.

The days or hours that you and I had alone together were few.  This semester we have had Monday and Wednesday evenings.  They are usually hit and miss in the “going well” department.

So like I said, with spring break approaching?  I was terrified of you.

And as I suspected, we started out sort of rocky, but as the break progressed?  Something happened.

We found a flow.

Mornings became our favorite time together (yes, mom, you read that correctly).

Between 7:00 and 8:00 am every day, I would slowly wake to your chatter in the other room.

Even though I wanted to stay sleeping, knowing that you would have a big smile was a bigger pull than my pillow.

As I could hear you counting, I would wake the house up by starting coffee, opening blinds, and finding Handy Manny on Disney.

By the time I was spitting my toothpaste into the sink you would be calling, “Daaaeeee”.  I would smirk knowing you forgot that it was not Daddy getting you up.

You would smile and point at all the items you had tossed from the crib.

You would chatter on about things only you knew as I turned off your nightlight and humidifier.

As the coffee percolated, you and I would mesh into each other on the couch for some Disney channel until you were ready to explore the world.

Sometime midweek, I taught you to finally say, “maaa maa!” although I had my doubts that you associated it with me and were not just mimicking what I was saying.

We had construction crews in and out this week.  We had playdates.  We had fun.

Our mornings were filled with books and trucks and Little People villages and trains.

And then this morning, after reading Where is the Green Sheep for the third time, I asked you “where is Eddie?”

You pointed at your chest and nodded while carefully pronouncing, “Eh-ee”.

I beamed with pride all the way from the tips of my toes, “That’s right!!!  And I love Eddie!  More than all the green sheep in the world!”

Then I cautiously asked, “And were is momma?”

You scrunched up that nose into your mischievous smile and pointed at me.

I was about to praise you for getting it right when you nodded with each syllable saying, “maa maa”.

Oh Eddie.

I couldn’t contain myself.

I grabbed you and hugged you so hard you said, “noooooo”.

So I tickled you instead.

We both shouted “MAA MAA, EH-EE!”” together over and over.

And fell over in a fit of ridiculous giggles.

I think Daddy is right.  You and I?  Are a lot alike.

That makes me happy.

Now I have a Goofball in Crime.

I love you to the moon and back.

With a drum on my head.

Love,

Maa Maa

Reflections on 33

You may have noticed that my birthday is kind of special to me.

I love it.

And Cort always makes sure my birthday is special.

There were three birthdays in a row (29, 30, and 31) that I was pregnant.

When I turned 29, I was pregnant, but no one knew.  And it didn’t stay.

When I tured 30, I was pregnant again, and again no one knew.  We didn’t tell.  Cort made the day very special for me, even though I ended up losing the baby less than a month later.

When I turned 31, I was again pregnant.  This time, VERY pregnant with a little bun named Eddie.

Last year, when I turned 32, my wonderful husband and my best friend decided I deserved a huge celebration to make up for the past three birthdays of laying low. And last year Cort and my parents bought me the best gift ever.

This year there were no trips or expensive dinners.

There were no huge surprises or massively extravagant gifts.

This year was a year of friends, family, and my little boy bringing me a small gift.

I got to have dinner with my best friend, Erin and my wonderful husband.

I drank something called a “Flirtini”.  It had champagne in it.

I was able to have game night with friends who may as well be our family.  Who we consider our family.

this game? is so much awesome.

They jumped out and yelled surprise at us when we walked through their door.  Ben cooked one of the best dinners ever.  Trisha made the yummiest cuppie cakes.  Their boys played with my boy.

three candles because 33? is too many.

and we laughed…and we ate…but mostly we laughed.

Even if Ed wasn’t thrilled to go to bed there at first.

On my actual birthday…

I slept in.

I woke up to:

“Let’s go find Mommy.  No…wait…Ed…not yet!”  <insert paper ripping noise here>

<insert spazzing toddler here>

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOMMY!!!

Two happy boys in PJs…

A venti starbucks latte…

An apple charm for my bracelet…

And a pile of snuggles and kisses and hugs.

I had dinner with my whole family around me:

Mom, Dad, Chris, Sarah, Jack, Henry, Mike, Ashley, Cort, and Eddie.

My favorite meal: Homemade chicken salad and blue berry muffins

The homemade ice cream cake I have ever year…

And a little bit of help from a little boy with my presents…

and with my candles…

I am pretty sure that 33 is going to be the best year ever.

Matching double digits.

Two Three’s.

33.

Lucky 33.

It’s going to be good.

just right

Sometimes…

it’s the little things…

like gifts from friends…

O Canada...how i love your treats...

freshly painted toenails and sipping wine with your husband…

do these feet say "let me entertain you?" like the color's name says?

trips to the bookstore…

i may have a wide variety of interests right now

tiny reminders…

yeah, I know. I just have to open my laptop!

lunch with no flying food or tantrums…

mmmm...best. bread. ever.

my favorite flowers…

and yes, I kissed him on his two-lips when he gave these to me.

little hands wanting to make letters…

E...D...D...I...E...

a reminder that someone is getting a cousin (or two) very soon!

hooray for cousins...

wait...does this mean I have to share Granny?

And my two very best guys…

handsome and cutie

…to make me feel like everything in this world is just the way it’s supposed to be.

that everything is just right.

——-

interested in the journey and adventure of Eddie’s cousin(s) coming home?  Check out Cort’s sister’s blog for more details.

belly laughs

I was prepared for the pain.

Four years earlier, Cortney had abdominal surgery to remove his appendix.  I remembered him holding his tummy as he shuffled around the house.

I wasn’t surprised that having a C-section made me look similar to his old man pose.

What did surprise me was how painful it was just to twist my torso to see Eddie in his little baby “aquarium” thing.  Or how much effort it would be to get out of bed, shuffle across the room, and lower myself onto the toilet to pee. And then getting back UP from the toilet?

I was tired a lot.

One of the first times I got up from my hospital bed and shuffled to the bathroom all by myself, the only people in the room to witness my triumph were Cort and Eddie, and to be honest?  Eddie did not cheer and hoot like I felt he should. Cort was only slightly more encouraging.

Anyway.  I had made it to the bathroom.  I had finished peeing. And I was just sitting there mustering up the energy to lift myself up to standing when I heard it.

A long, loud drawn out bit o flatulence.

And then?  laughter.

As I sat there in my gown with the mesh undies around my ankles, I put my hands up to my face and groaned.

Really, Cortney?

And he was STILL laughing.  And there may have been heavy breathing and then more laughing.

Ok, really?  Was his fart REALLY that funny?

I took a deep breath, grabbed the mesh undies with one hand and the grab bar in the other and slowly stood up.  I cradled my soft belly in one hand and adjusted my undergarments with the other.

He was still laughing.  It sounded almost painful.  Really?

I hunched over the sink washing my hands and looking at my greasy hair and pale skin.

He continued to laugh.

Finally, I opened the door and saw him.

He was sitting on the couch, our wee one in his arms, head thrown back, tears streaming down his face…laughing.

“Cort.  It was a fart.  It’s not THAT funny.  It’s sort of gross.”

He shook his head as his body erupted with deep laughter and tears all over again.

I shuffled to the bed.

“Seriously, babe.  Not that funny.”

He wiped the tears from his eyes while shifting our little burrito to his other arm.

“No, Kate…it wasn’t me.”

And the laughter started again as he threw his head back onto the window ledge.

“Wait…what?”

And then I got it.  He was pointing at Eddie.

“OH MY…” and the laughter started somewhere deep within me.  I tried to stop it, knowing how a belly laugh would tear at my wound, but I couldn’t stop it.

Tears streamed down my face–both from pain and from joy.

“That was such a…such a…,” I gasped, “MAN FART!”

And we both lost it all over again.

“No…stop…,” I begged, “I can’t….it hurts…ohhh!!!”

Finally our laughter gave way to heavy sighs and the wiping of tears.

Every now and then a chuckle would escape our lips and we would stifle it…trying not to hurt me again with a full on attack.

This little man….

Turned into this little man…

And his toots?  Are just as loud and ridiculous.

And they have not stopped being funny either.

Steppin’ Out With Mah Girls

Me: all Gap Outlet.  really.  head to toe.

Eddie: shirt-carters; pants- osh kosh

Today was needed.

Today I was restored as a girl.  As a friend.  As an individual.

And the ironic thing?  I so didn’t want to go.

This ridiculous depression that has taken over my brain had convinced me that I would not have fun, that it was going to suck away family time, that I would be miserable.

I am so SOO glad I did not give in to that.

This morning I got up on time (after a lovely Ambien-induced GOOD night’s sleep), showered, got dressed in something other than yoga pants and a hoodie, and headed out to meet my friend, Whitney.

Together, she and I traveled to Lansing to meet our other four girl friends with whom we went to college.

The six of us shared lettuce wraps and kid stories at PF Changs.

We laughed and reminisced about tattoos and living arrangements over manicures and pedicures.

We shared stories from the front lines of pregnancy and parenting while sipping coffees and munching cookies.

We realized that this summer will be the wrap up of two “rounds” of us each hosting an annual get together for us and our spouses/families. That means this is the TWELFTH year we have had a “reunion”.

We absorbed the fact that counting the two buns in the oven Erin and Tara are baking?  We will have 12 kids total between us making the kid to adult ratio equal this summer.

Today was lovely.

I laughed genuinely.

I shared freely.

I put away my misgivings (which proved to be futile and false).

I did become incredibly tired, but I was able to push through it instead of cripple under it.

Today I listened to my friends…instead of being too inside my own head.

And even though I am totally spent tonight?

I am happy.  I feel like a good friend.

And I have cute nails.

This post is part of Harper’s Happenings’ Steppin’ Out Saturday.

Thank you to Whitney, Tara, Erin, Kimmy, and Kristin for a wonderful, needed day.  This day came exactly when I needed it.  Your friendship is appreciated more than you can possibly know.

snow much fun

I have not been feeling well today.  Not at all.

So I am not feeling very scribe-ish or posty this evening.

Instead, I will just give you some pictures of my boys.

We live in Michigan..West Michigan.  So we get lots of lake effect snow, however compared with the rest of the country, this has been a fairly mild winter for us.

This weekend we finally got “play-able” snow.  After nap on Sunday, I got Eddie all geared up, Cort got himself geared up, and my matching men went out to play.

do these pants make my boo-tay look big?

the snow is THIS way!

come ON, dad!

Let's go explore, my little mini-me!

I need a shovel for the clubhouse!

exploring the winter wonderland.

We tried to get him outside with out the pipey in his mouth, but it is his saftey lovey when he is nervous…and the snow made him nervous (which I can TOTALLY relate to, little bud!)

They probably were only outside for 20 minutes, but it wore the little guy out…slept like a log that night.

Now I can’t wait for Cort to take him on the sled so I can sit inside alone and sip hot cocoa!  Yay!  Such fun Michigan winters bring!

psssst!  Today?  Wednesday?  Is your LAST CHANCE to enter to win a copy of Show Me How! It’s a great book with zillions of activities to keep the little ones busy when you DON’T want to gear up and play outside!  Enter now! Giveaway ends Wednesday, 8pm Eastern time.

did someone say “birthday extravaganza”?

Birthdays are sort of a big deal in Sluiter Nation.  I have always thought that your birthday is your own special day and it needs to be GOOD.  It has nothing to do with age…all about it being YOUR day.

Since Cort’s birthday is in December, I try extra hard to make it all about his birthday since I know that in the past it has gotten lost in the shuffle of Christmas.

Thus started the tradition of the BIRTHDAY EXTRAVAGANZA in Sluiter Nation.

Friday I had the day off work (for various reasons, Cort’s birthday was a bonus), so we did some errands, had birthday lunch out, and saw Santa (totally a different post, since you know…that has to do with Christmas).

So anyway, Friday on his birthday we had to have birthday brownies.  because that is what Cort loves best.

We also had dinner at his mom and step-dad’s house.  Orange chicken and rice and egg rolls…um?  YUM!  And cupcakes for dessert!  Of course there were presents as well, and now Cort has his own wheelbarrow to push Eddie lawn stuff around in this spring.

Saturday was date night, so this is my version of Steppin’ Out Saturday:

Eddie went to Grandpa and Grandma Riemersma’s house so we could have our birthday date.

On Eddie:

Onsie and jeans = Osh Kosh

vest = Baby Gap

socks = target

Cortney and I went to the Grand Rapids Public Museum to see the Bodies Revealed exhibit (VERY AWESOME) and then to Six One Six for a swanky meal and cocktails.

On Cort:

Button Down Shirt = Old Navy

Jeans = Gap

Socks = Hanes

Belt = from Younkers

On Me:

cami = Gap

Sweater = Old Navy

Jeans = Gap

Boots = Shoe Carnival

Necklace = Cap Creations

Earrings = Vintage Pearl

And today to round out all the fun, we gathered at my parents’ house again to celebrate December birthdays:  Cort and our nephew Jack.  There was lasagna dinner, presents galore, and cakes for every birthday boy!

It’s been a jam-packed weekend here in Sluiter Nation, but it’s been super fun!  We do love birthdays!

Stop by for Top Ten Tuesdays this week:  Top Ten Holiday Foods!

Milk and Cookies

nothing better on a cold, snowy Saturday.

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