On This … Our Wedding Day.

Which was not to be.

We didn’t get married. We didn’t call to check on the status. Instead, I drove home from my parents’ house 3 hours away with a carsick toddler who had to pee (potty training) every five minutes down the highway.

By the time we got home, I had stopped at no less than 4 gas stations and hauled a toddler and her portable potty chair ring into their bathroom. Sometimes she went, sometimes, she had already gone. Thank goodness for pull-ups on long car rides.

I also got to clean up puke on the side of the highway. Lots and lots of puke. So much puke that I had to change my kid, wipe down the seat, and then put her back in it. Puke in the hair, puke on the hands, puke on her most favorite blanket. But, once she was done puking and all cleaned up, she was better. Feeling better enough to keep watching her movie.

Mommy was tired. Worn out and tired.

We had a nice visit with my family though. Lots of nice times and sweet moments. And it took my mind off the fact that we weren’t getting married. I got to spend time with people I love and people who were equally as disappointed that we weren’t getting married.

IMG_9713 IMG_9743 IMG_9774 IMG_9787

 

It’s nice to have supportive family who love us so much. I really is. Of course, there are some well wishers and people who really do mean well – but let’s just say the one thing not to say to console a person who CAN’T GET MARRIED is to tell them that marriage is just a piece of paper.

Or that we don’t need a piece of paper to know how much we love each other.

That’s not the point. The love isn’t the point. This marriage, this paper that so many straight couples (who I love dearly and I know meant no disrespect) take for granted gives so many rights and privileges that we don’t have.

So, actually – yes. WE do need that piece of paper. To make our lives complete and legal and as equal in the eyes of the law, we do need that paper.

In order for Kim to make medical decisions on my behalf without the hassle of courts and lawyers and still the possibility of a judge declaring its not legal. We do need that paper.

In order for us to be equal parents to our daughter, make decisions in all aspects of her life – financial, education, medical – we do need that paper.

I think people forget, or they are just not aware of the many rights that you are afforded when you get married. It’s not about declaring your love to someone, we’ve been doing that for 11 years. Now, it’s about the same rights. The same standard of care we should be getting from our government in the form of taxes, spousal benefits, and guardianship of our daughter.

Its the legal aspect that means the most.

So do I need a piece of paper to tell the world I love the woman I have been with for the last 11 years? No. That’s a given.

I know the phrase “Its just a piece of paper” is one given out of love and consolation. One that is supposed to make us feel better.

Unfortunately. It only means that there are still people in the world, people who love and support us, who don’t fully understand the ramifications of our being unable to marry.

It’s not about religious beliefs. It’s not about love. It’s not about some ceremony or tradition. Its not about procreation or even raising a kid in the ‘right family.’

You can read about what it’s really about: It’s about the rights we don’t have.

It will come and I think that’s what is so frustrating. This delay is just a delay. An unnecessary waste of energy, time, and emotional heartbreak. In the end, what is another month, really? What has changed? Not much.

Other than the idea that we should have been getting married today. And we didn’t.

Advertisements

And these are the Days of Our Lives…..

I feel like we are constantly in some wackadoodle damn soap opera. The roller coaster of our life just never had a moment to slow down and stop. There are never any breaks along the way, it’s just UP and DOWN. UP and DOWN.

Jeez, life, throw me a damn bone.

I’m super frustrated right now because Kim and I got Punky all dressed up and paraded her around the court house in Kansas to get our application for a marriage license. Literally, just last week, this was a done deal and we found out about it on Wednesday. We were excited, we were so relieved. It wasn’t Missouri, but just the few days prior, Missouri did rule that they would recognize gay marriages performed legally in states that do allow that sort of thing.

So, why not, we said?

We only live 30 minutes away from the court house doing it and we could go up there before I went to work the very next day. So, Thursday, we got ready, we all three got up super early. This was a momentous occasion and one we called all our parents about and pumped up our Facebook friends and family with this adorable video from Punky!

It was pouring down rain when we got in the car, by the time we got on the highway, I couldn’t even really see the cars in front of us. The rain was sheets of water, buckets being dumped on our car. Kim looked at me and said, “You must really want to do this.” And if anyone knows me, I don’t drive in the best conditions, let alone these types of conditions, unless I want to get somewhere. I held it together and kept my cool.

Punky got to press the walk button on the crosswalk and go through the metal detector, all while charming the pants off anybody we passed with her ridiculously adorable pea coat and umbrella.

IMG_9615

We finally found our way to the marriage license window and got the application; after swearing to god that our statements were all true. We got the application and they hadn’t even had time to change the pronouns on the application yet, it’s that new. So we had to cross out groom and we had to change he to she. Normally, this kind of thing might bug me, but not at that moment. I didn’t care. I just wanted to do it right.

11 years we have waited. 11 years we have been patiently watching and silently hoping that we will be married in our own state, or at least close. (Kansas is literally right around the corner from us!)  Who cares if the forms are updated. That time will come. I just wanted it to be right.

We signed some stuff, took our application and went home to wait the three day waiting period for Kansas marriage licenses.

IMG_9614

We were going to make a trip back there on Tuesday. We were going to get married and get our marriage license on Tuesday. The long wait for marriage (and tax benefits and rights and equality) was finally over.

Until tonight.

When we read that the Kansas State Attorney General petitioned a block on all gay marriage licenses. There will be a hearing. Sometime in November. And yes, I know – we will get married eventually. With the way the momentum of gay marriage is sweeping the country – it’s going to happen.

But.

It won’t be Tuesday.

And we are all pretty bummed about it.

SAD

And in other news, we are going to visit my family tomorrow – so that will likely brighten my spirits a bit.

Hope everyone has a good weekend!

22/52 – Father’s Day and Water Play

IMG_7274

This pretty girl has declared recently “I not a baby anymore!”

Which, neither of are really sure what that means, to Punky, but we know what it means to her mothers.

We aren’t supposed to sing songs for her, she will do it. We aren’t supposed to help her dance. She will do it. We can’t help her put her socks on, Punky will do it. Moms are allowed to take her shoes off for her, she’s got it.

We also can’t make presents for her Papa/Uncle Day without her assistance. So, she got to put the presents for her uncles and papa in their bags and stuff the paper in as well. This year they all got custom chocolate Hershey’s bars. Mommy made the wrong dimensions and we had to improvise, but it was still cute!

Father's Day

For her Bubba (godfather) we made him a Moonpie Tower, because he loves Moonpies and of course was over the moon to have them! But of course, we had to try them before we made the tower!

Father's Day

Papa got a T-Shirt with this ironed on it and it was a pretty awesome hit! Immediately worn when unwrapped, which is pretty much every year, since Papa gets a new shirt every year! Suppose it’s better than a tie!!

Untitled-1

Overall, Papa/Uncle Day was a pretty good success. After the festivities of presents and BBQ, it was time for the kids to get in the pool for some water play and swimming. Punky is really loving the water right now. Its great that her preschool has water play on Tuesdays as well, so they have her bring her swimsuit and they explore different water type activities, this week it was running through the sprinklers.

So, she loves her goggles and swimming at Grammy and Papa’s house, so they spent the afternoon browning in the sunlight – and swimming up and down the pool.

IMG_7247

IMG_7251

IMG_7236

IMG_7265

And at the end of the day, Papa/Uncle Day wore out my kiddo and her Mama! This is by far one of my most favorite pictures ever!!

mama

Off to the Potty Races!

Punky has been vocally more interested in telling us that she is “poopy” or “I hafta pee” in the last few months. I have been hesitant on the potty training front before because we don’t have a washer and dryer in our apartment and it is just going to be a mess. I’m sure of it.

However, everything I keep reading says when your child is ready, things will fall in place. And just like when we used to think “we need to wait until we are ready to have a baby”, I thought, “I need to wait until we are ready to potty train.”

Except … when is any first time parent really READY to potty train. I mean seriously? There’s never going to be a ‘perfect time’ to potty train.

With Kim’s health right now, still uncertain and very much up in the air, I have been increasingly more hesitant to potty train Miss Punky – but as kids around her age are starting to potty train and little girls in the family are starting to have potty charts and such, I figure, now is as good a time as any to get started.

Tomorrow morning, we wear panties. Big girl panties. I bought some when she started school a few months ago, and she has worn them over her pull-ups, but she’s never actually worn them alone.

potty-chart

She’s been able to communicate so much better lately, she’s speaking in full (semi-coherent when she’s not whining) sentences and singing up a storm. Just this afternoon, I caught her singing a choppy version of her ABCs and it was pretty much, give or take a few letters, on tune and in order. Miss Punky can also count to 10! Its just awesome how much she has blossomed in just a few months from her second birthday.

I’m hearing more and more “I do it!” when it comes to get dressed and undressed. So, Kim has to keep reminding me to let her do it and she will come to me when she wants help. Even when she tries to put her head in the head hole of her shirt instead of the bottom of the shirt first. It’s just nuts to watch the trial and error and the extreme frustration that comes with learning basic skills we adults take for granted.

In other news, Kim has a neurologist appointment on the 20th. Fingers crossed that her ailments aren’t something severe. for a 31 year old woman, she’s falling apart, my love is breaking down and we could all use a few positive vibes (and if you are my mama, prayers in lieu of positive thoughts) sent our way for healthy results to the next few weeks and less stress on me!

In even more news, state by state is knocking down their bans on gay marriage, congratulations to Wisconsin. I sure can’t wait until Missouri makes it that far, but of course, I won’t hold my breath. I am sure we will be the last belle to arrive at the ball! Instead, I have been putting my creativity to use, making super cute bridal shower invitations for lesbian weddings. I’m so excited about the new line int he shop.

BSL3000 BSL2004 BSL4000 BSL5000

I’ve just been super busy in the shop coming up with new ideas and of course, I am always looking for new themes and ideas!

In the meantime, I’m all ears for tips and tricks on potty training a toddler, a two year old girl to be more specific!! Give me a shout, I could use a little words of encouragement to keep my sanity in check this coming week, for more reasons than just the potty training!

Daddy Date Night and Other Musings

Tonight was the night of my hometown’s “Daddy Date Night”. I’ve never in my entire life understood the big deal behind this date night. Probably because I have never been. Well, I take that back. I went once, on the last year I could go in fifth grade and by then I was ‘too old to care”.

Looking at all the great pictures of my friends and family’s little girls getting all dressed up and going out with their dads, uncles, and other male figures in their lives. It made me really take notice that this will be a thing we may encounter with when Punky gets older.

Who knows if they will have such an event when she’s old enough for it, but given that it was around when I was in kindergarten in like 1990, I’m sure this time honored tradition isn’t going away.

She has plenty of male role models that can take her. In fact, unlike myself, growing up, she may have to pick who to take – they may all line up outside my door. In fact, considering the overwhelming love and support she has by one very doting godfather, super awesome and loving papas, and more uncles than one kid should ever have, I don’t think she will have a problem in this department.

It’s kind of nice thinking about them drawing straws to see who GETS to take her. LOL. Take a number – or well, she may be the only girl at the party with 60 gentlemen escorting her.

IMG_5786

So, its times like this that some people may worry about our daughter being raised by two moms. Where the Christian nay-sayers and the well to do marriage equality oppositions would be up in arms that my sweet girl just can’t possibly grow up a well adjusted, loved, and well rounded young lady without a dad in her life.

Well, it’s times like this – when my Facebook feed is covered with all sorts of families displaying their little girls and their male figures going off on dates. It’s times like this that makes me remember just how lucky Miss Punky is. She won’t ever want for a date to something like this. I am so happy to know she’s so blessed in that way.

There are plenty of opportunities I worry, as her mom, that she will miss out on things that other kids get to experience. And, when I saw the picture of my soon-to-be seven year old niece headed off with her male figure, my sister’s current beau, and not her father, it reminds me that she had two parents – a mom and a dad – when she was conceived.

In the end, she’s seen her ‘dad’ a handful of times in her life and I wouldn’t envy her experience for the world. That poor girl has had it tough in the dad department. People need to remember, that just because you have a dad, doesn’t mean you HAVE a dad. And, it’s times like this that I have to salute those men who stand up and take up that role for little girls like my sweet sweet niece – whom I have seen grow up and blossom from birth. I have seen her knocked down and kicked around by the dad she was given.

I’m not sure what I’m getting at, except that seeing all those pictures from the family and friends who have little girls old enough to experience something I’ve never really seen the value in – based on my own experiences – it flashed me forward to what our future may hold.

And all I can see if the line of gentlemen callers in her family and extended family that will be banging down the door to be the first to escort Miss Punky to her first “Papa/Uncle Date Night.” No dad required.

And we are just fine with that. She will have quite the choices to make when the time comes!

IMG_5770

13/52 – School Picture Day

According to the school, Punky was not thrilled about doing picture day. However, I didn’t get a note that says she refused it, some parents did have that stuck to their child’s cubby!

She just only got 1 good picture apparently.

I dressed her so darn cute today too!

So instead, I took it upon myself to take her pictures for her school day pictures. And with the way I take pictures anyway, that may be the theme of her life! 😉

preschool

Honorable Mention are these:

preschool2 preschool3

 

She’s growing up so fast. I thought maybe it might be fun to also see what her classroom looks like and what her little job is everyday she’s there.

IMG_5563 IMG_5564Punky is the bell ringer. I’m not sure what the means and what her job is as the bell ringer, but she is the bell ringer pretty much every time she goes to school – I hear she enjoys it!

I’m glad she got to go to school day, she’s been sickly. She got her first ear infection this weekend and she’s been on antibiotics for that. The doctor also says her chest sounds good, her temperature is fine, but she is running low grade fevers periodically and coughing up a storm. So we have had to bring out Sammy Seal to help with breathing treatments. The doctor says it’s probably just sinus drainage and she doesn’t know how to cough it up and get rid of it, so instead, she chokes on it.

IMG_5560

 

 

So we do breathing treatments every four hours, while singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and sitting on my lap. I fell asleep in her toddler bed a couple nights ago, so that we could get her to sleep propped up. It worked, but it was quite a feat getting out of the bed when it was time for me to go back to my own bed.

In that time, I’ve also learned its really hard to teach a two year old how to blow her nose. So far, that’s my single most frustrating moment thus far. She won’t let me dig in there to help clear it out, but she can’t figure out the ‘blow your nose’ trick either.

Hopefully, her cough clears up soon, she is having a rough couple nights sleeping, when the coughs hit hardest.

This Just In!

We just landed in “BIG GIRL LAND”

So much has happened in just this one day. I swear, toddlers are the most astounding little people on the planet.

This afternoon, I had to stay home from work for some … personal issues, so I of course spent time with our Punky. Always a treat and a whine-fest – so it really just re-enforces the ‘working mom’ role is best for me.

However, we have moments of pure awesome too!

So, at school, March has been the month of learning about space and planets and things like that. They have been painting aliens, learning about the different planets, and playing with “ice planets” (I’m not really sure what that is.) Anyway, for my baby shower with my co-workers, each guest colored a letter and they made me an alphabet book for Punky when she got bigger.

Well, now she’s bigger. She found the book on her own, not sure where it has been stored, but suddenly she had it out and brought it to me saying “Read it, Mommy”.

Well, ok, sure.

We get to “O” and it was covered in planets and the sun and such. I suppose it’s for the word “Orbit”. A strange word for an alphabet book, right? Nope. She says, “Planets, Mommy.”

IMG_5416

Excuse me?! And while Kim and I are looking at each other with our mouths open, she points to ‘saturn’ and says “Mercury” which I clearly know that Saturn isn’t Mercury, but it’s pretty damn awesome that our kid knows a planet’s name!

I get the vibe sometimes that ‘daycare’ is looked down upon by some, especially stay-at-home moms, but you know what, it’s just like anything else we do for Punky (TV and electronics included, a post for another day) it’s all about education and fun combined.

So, we go take a nap and when she gets up, we needed to change her pull-up and she came to me and says “Go Potty.” well, I can’t tell right now if she’s just experimenting with words or if she really means it. I mean, if she’s interested – who am I to discourage right?

She brought me her Dora panties and I was like, “Well, ok!” Terrified – I took her to her room and gave her a choice between pull-up and panties. (I’m pretty sure I had a moment of temporary insanity, people!) She picked Dora panties over Minnie Mouse pull-ups of course! When I put the panties on her bare booty, she was just giving me the strangest looks. She kept poking at it, like it was some new sensation.

I let her run around the apartment for about 10 minutes without pants or pull-up and she came to me at one point and said “Go Potty.” So she sat on her potty for a good ten minutes, for the first time without panties and just carried on a great little broken conversation with me on the bathroom floor. (We got nothing, but there was plenty of clapping involved)

SO, after that, I got to thinking about how we don’t have a washer and dryer and damnit what if she peed on the couch and we didn’t really plan for this and we didn’t really have this thought out. How do we even begin to communicate this thing with her? How do I make her understand that she has to tell me when she needs to pee. She can’t pull her own panties up or down.

And I started second guessing myself and that’s when the thoughts took over (anxiety brain) and kicked into overdrive and I ushered her back to her room to put pull-up on!

Yes, Mommy sabotaged her first attempt at potty training, but I got nervous! She’s interested – the teacher at her school said she may start to be more interested and she has been more vocal about when she has to be changed and things. So it’s not like she can’t communicate with us, but jeebs, I just got all nuts about it.

Maybe we will try again another day! We aren’t in any rush, right? I mean, she doesn’t go to kindergarten for a few more years! Haha.

She coerced me into taking her outside for a bit, she got a new bubble car for her birthday and she was very excited to put ‘gas’ in it and blow bubbles everywhere.

IMG_5364  IMG_5376

After going outside in the chilly semi-spring weather, we made dinner and Kim decided to get out the table she got for her birthday. Yet another BIG GIRL moment. We retired the high chair tonight and gave her a cup without a lid for dinner.

IMG_5412IMG_5415

It went as well as can be expected. She ate the crap out of pulled pork and that was awesome. She’s being less of a picky eater since school started too! If I had any reservations about putting her in ‘daycare’ those have all been countered by the great things it’s doing for her development!

Lots of big girl things going on around here. She’s such a good little helper and she’s so vocal about everything. She sang bits and pieces of “Twinkle, Twinkle” today and danced to “The Voice” with Mommy today.

IMG_5379

I hope to have many more moments of fun and sweet with my special girl! I know some people are looking at adding to their family, but I don’t know if I could hold anymore love for any other kid but this one. Even in the moments when she drives me absolutely batty, she’s just the joy and heart of my life.

Besides, we really lucked out in the kid department. From conception to toddler-hood, we have the best experience and the best kid anyone could ask for. Sometimes, I feel guilty for the awesome-ness that is our kid!

Even if she does steal my money! LOL

IMG_5407

10/52 – Exploring the Sandbox

1901125_10152700878299148_1759892254_n

After I picked Miss Punky up from school today, it was about 5:30 and it was pretty nice outside. No wind, not too hot, not too cold, so I decided it was the perfect time to get her to the park for a bit. No sooner did we get our feet in the sand than the rain came sprinkling in.

We didn’t get to play long, but it was enough for her to know that she likes sand! We will be going back on Thursday after school again.

4/52 – Adventures With Mommy

Image

This week was really all about exploring the adventures we could have with Mommy. And learning that sometimes, the best “me time” is time with the little girl who makes your world go ’round. I’m exploring and learning new things too!

 

2013 ReCap! Favorite Highlights of 2013

With this being the last day of 2013, and its nearly 3 months until our little one is two. I thought it might be fun to recap our last year.

Here are some of the highlights in our family. The good, the bad, the absolutely ridiculous.

735161_10151660022539148_413435585_n

JAN – Our car of nearly 8 years finally gave out and we HAD to get a new one. While our credit is super terrible, let’s not talk about it, I did score this super nice car. Payments are more than most people would want to pay, but it’s within our budget, it hasn’t had a run in with a deer yet and it will be nearly a year in our family in January. I am still in love with this car, despite the fast food bags in the floor boards.

13104_10151762155919148_457995065_n

FEB – Punky and I found Gymboree and we had a blast. We used our free trial class to get acquainted and it was great fun while we had the open gym option. I really feel like Punky learned to walk at Gymboree, she had more room to move around and she really got her confidence there. We may not to Gymboree now, she’s just too busy for that, but I will always be thankful for some great friends I have met and made as a result of connections there as well as their help in her development.

541021_10151811019294148_809243182_n

MAR – Miss Punky turned one this March and it came with all sorts of great things. We had a Dr. Seuss Blowout for her and there was plenty of cake pops and fun to be had. A special dress was made just for her party and her pictures were taken by my best friend for her one year birthday. She also started walking more steadily in March, when she really took off and didn’t need as much hand holding. It’s been all down hill since then in the mobile toddler department!

533304_10151865832914148_1765866348_n

APR – Punky’s first trip to the zoo. It wasn’t exactly a hit, she was still too small to enjoy the animals and know what was going on. But, it was fun to take her out of the house as a family – and spent time with our awesome friends and her godparents. She liked being carried around and looking at the birds in the aviary the most, I think. Her moms enjoyed going home to rest our toes by the end of the day!

936708_10151957314154148_1713926190_n

MAY – Punky and I joined a mom’s group which was a big step for this Mommy. I suffer from a pretty ridiculous anxiety disorder when it comes to strangers and new things outside my comfort level. Punky and I are no longer a part of that group, but we met a lot of great women and did a lot of great things together as a Mommy and Daughter hanging out. I miss that time together now, and hope we have more of it this summer.

954841_10151997312274148_1346093306_n

JUN – We started working with utensils and other food groups in June. We started with Applesauce, but well, Spaghetti O’s are just awesome and she made a great big mess with them. She does much better with a fork now, perhaps not a spoon quite yet still, but we are getting hang of it. It all started with this attempt at eating something a great deal more messy than finger foods and snacks.

1045215_10152053227324148_333714185_n

JUL – The forth of July marked the first time we put Punky’s hair in pigtails, it’s when her hairstyle really began. Since it is her signature look now and most people are just over the moon by her pigtails, it’s worth mentioning when we started this! We have since started adding barrettes and flower barrettes to add color and keep her bangs out of her eyes!

554015_10152125945389148_239028347_n

AUG – We spent a lot of time hanging out with family and some friends with other toddlers this summer. We spent most of our time running through the fountains at City Hall downtown in our community. It was fun to watch her run through the water and touch the water. It was a great sensory activity as well as a way to keep us all cool and not melting in the hot August temps.

558882_10152234315834148_1945028913_n

SEPT – August we learned how to slide. Albiet, it was really sliding on our tummy and we haven’t mastered sitting on the butt to slide, but well, it’s more fun to slide on your belly anyway! She absolutely loves the slide now and I’d say it’s her favorite thing to do at the park. She will slide forever if I let her and she cries when we leave. It would be AOK to let her slide all day, but other kids have to wait forever, she’s so slow to turn around and get in sliding position.

1391726_10152337291124148_834294010_n

OCT – For Halloween this year, we dressed up as a family. This is the year that Punky was able to participate in some of the Halloween events and was able to eat all the candy she wanted and attend a party at her Grammy’s house and actually enjoy it. We all dressed up as Snow White, the Evil Queen, and the Mirror(not pictured). We had a great time, not only was Punky super cute, Mommy won a costume contest at work!

1454721_10152358675784148_861049947_n

NOV – November marked the month that this Mommy had to face the facts and really take the munchkin to get her hair cut. We went to our local Shear Madness Kid’s Haircutting place and it was a success. I was so sad to see her hair go and people ask if I kept a lock of her hair, but well, it would just get lost or scattered somewhere. Besides, what’s better than a billion pictures like this to remember the event.

1452475_10152464157634148_1475082603_n

DEC – December was full of all sorts of greatness. 24 days of fun Christmas things and Santa related awesomeness, ended with a great Christmas full of explosions of presents, food and family. However, my most favorite highlight of December has to be the transition to the toddler bed. She has taken to it like a champ, better than I expected, but I’m not sure why I expected something less than normal for her champion sleeper! She’s just getting so big, and with the bed has come in increase of tantrums and time outs and swats on the butt, however, the big girl bed is the best part of December.

**

2013 was full of a great deal of firsts for our precious little one and our family. We found out my brother and his wife are expecting their first baby boy, can’t wait! Kim’s brother proposed to his girlfriend this summer, and we can’t wait to add her to the family!

I had a few bumps in the road, like the job front being less than ideal, being in therapy for PTSD for several reasons, and the increase in toddler tantrums and as her personality has continued to grow, the more she has tried our patience as mothers.

However, we have also celebrated our 10 year anniversary, DOMA was struck down and we started on our marriage in Iowa and set a tentative date for our wedding ceremony after our marriage.

There are a lot of dark spots in this year, but there are more tiny, beautiful shining moments in this year and I am looking forward to seeing what 2014 has in store for us!

Here’s to you, my family and friends (including those mamas and mommies in blogger land). I hope you have an excellent New Year full of joy and beauty and may all your dreams come true!