Monday, February 27, 2006

Apparently a brightly colored shaw was required apparel for our evening playtime. He looks like a little old lady. Doesn't he? Posted by Picasa

Y is for YAY Grandma.  Posted by Picasa

Aren't they both cute as a button?  Posted by Picasa

Ladies of bowling - Susan, Holly and I.  Posted by Picasa

Bowled over by the weekend

Last night Mark said “So… when is the weekend starting?” It’s not that we did anything particularly taxing or spectacular this weekend. It’s just that it seemed to go fast, and without a moment to sit down and chill.

We had my sister Jessica visit this weekend. Noah is absolutely enthralled with her. And rightfully so, since she has the energy and inclination to repeatedly chase him squealing around the kitchen table. It’s good she likes babies – she told us this weekend her mom is expecting again in August. And as her baby brother or sister is born she’ll be nearing babysitting age.

Since Jess was here we didn’t get around to doing our weekend chores, which means the house is in some disarray. And right now I should be cleaning up for my cousin Tammy who is arriving in 45 minutes with her two kids. After lunch we’re taking the toddler brigade to the Please Touch Museum. Yes, again. Well - I bought a yearly membership so I’m gonna use it. Maybe even weekly. I have to get the boy out of the house.

I could tell you what we did this weekend but it’s hella repetitive. We did the same old stuff we normally do – pet store, Ikea, out for breakfast, etc - but this time we had Jess with us. The big exception is that we went to Lucky Strikes Bowling Lounge for Susan’s birthday party. I’d never been there before and was really impressed. It was a great place for a little private party. I’m really excited now for the bowling lounge they’re building in our neighborhood. Jess, Noah, Mark and I had a great time – and we even bowled pretty well. Except for Noah. He stinks.

Well – I’ve got to go scrub my sink. Because I’m sure while my cousin is chasing her 17 month old and three year old around that she’ll have a moment to take a gander at my disgraceful sink and nod her head woefully at the condition of the home in which Noah is forced to live.

Oh and I got no sleep last night. Surprising, right? I thought so.

Friday, February 24, 2006

BAA! I said. BAA!

Baby nightmares. Patchy sleep. Tired mama. ‘Nuff said.

I burnt my arm with my hairdryer this morning. It’s so ridiculous I can hardly believe it happened. The brush attachment fell off while I was using it and fell in the crook of my arm, burning my flesh with white hot metal. Lovely, really. And this afternoon I have to take the boy to City Hall to get a certified copy of my marriage certificate. If you don’t know anything about toddlers, you’ve got to know how much they love standing quietly in line to fill out paperwork. It should be sublime.

I need some new music. I’m SO sick of listening to the same stuff. I went down to the basement on Saturday to find something different to listen to among our CD piles and came up with nothing but ABBA Gold. SAD. I’ve been listening to ABBA for almost a week now. Sadder still. Any recommendations?

I’ve got some new Noah stuff to report:

He’s enthralled by animals and animal noises. Of course in his world most animals apparently say “Baaa.” I got him a book at the library called “What do you say?” and it asks what you should say to each of the animals. Noah loves it. I’ve read it FAR too many times. But the punchline in the book asks “What do you say to a little fish?.... Hello little fish.” Noah loves it. He’s started waving and saying “Hello” to every fish picture. And yesterday morning he picked up the book himself and said “Hello fish.” Though it sounded more like “Aaaaah-ooooo Eeesh.”

So we all know he likes to stack blocks. But did you know that now when he knocks them over he says “DOWN” and bends over to touch his head to the carpet. He’s also started stacking our groceries. He tries to balance boxes of spaghetti, cous cous and pilaf on top of each other, and he gets frustrated when he can’t balance anything on the thin neck of the barbecue sauce.

One of Noah’s proudest accomplishments is learning how to get up and down out of the wooden chair in our office. He thinks he’s the king now. One day he decided he HAD to sit in it, but he couldn’t get up. So I’d put him in it, he’d sit back proudly and then clamor down by himself. It became time consuming and boring to keep boosting him up, so I remembered the little plastic bathroom stool we have and put it at the base of the chair so he could climb up himself. He was in love. Now he gets up and down to his hearts content, all the while saying “up” and “down.”

When my mom was here on Sunday she played the shell game with Noah. She put two shaker eggs under two of three cups and then shuffled them around before letting Noah pick them up. He loves it. Next we teach him three card Monty. He’s also started coloring with me, which is kind of a relief. I was a bit worried that he had very little interest in drawing before, but it just wasn’t yet his time. The funny thing is he only likes to color on top of what I have already colored. Forget blank space, he’s all about layering.

There was more… I know there was. Of course there is always more. I guess I’ll save it for later.

Yesterday afternoon Tripp and his mom Holly came over for lunch. It was nice to have some company. Tripp’s still a bit high spirited for Noah, he’s got boundless and unbridled energy and enthusiasm that he expresses by running back and forth while letting out high pitched screams of joy. But this time rather than crying Noah just smiled and pointed at Tripp as if to say “Did you see that?” It was kind of funny. And Holly left us with a giant plate of chocolates, cookies and brownies. Obviously because she’s evil.

This weekend my 10 y.o. sister Jessica will be visiting us. I’m picking her up tonight. Tomorrow afternoon we go to a bowling birthday party for Noah’s little friend Frannie’s mom. Not sure what else we’re going to get up to this weekend, though we’ll probably go out to eat at one point or another. I like to have special things to do when Jess is here, but I’m not sure what that is this time. We shall see.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, February 23, 2006


I'm at a loss about what to post today. I know I still need to work on my 100 things and the college years are next, but I don't feel like thinking that hard. So I've decided to answer the Four meme. Prepare to be enthralled.

Four jobs I have had:
Shift Manager at West Coast Video
Cocktail waitress at Chris’ Jazz Café
Features Editor for the Temple News
First Grade Teacher in North Philly

Four movies I can watch over and over:
Sound of Music
Philadelphia Story
Gone with the Wind
Wizard of Oz

Four TV shows I love:
Amazing Race
Project Runway

Four places I’ve vacationed:
Marrakech, Morocco
Paris, France
London, England
New Orleans, LA

Four of my favorite dishes:
Aloo Gobi
Thai vegetable curry - yellow, green or red
Big salads - especially with bacon and bleu cheese
Chocolate cake

Four sites I visit often:
Blogs of friends – listed on the sidebar

Four places I’d like to be now:
Out to dinner with my husband
Hugging my sister Elisha
Laughing with Patrice and Janette
In a mysterious and magical foreign city I’ve never been to before - like Mumbai

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Down and Out in TV land

Two words can have a huge impact on your life. Did you know? Since Noah learned the words for “down” and “out” it’s all I ever hear. He wants to get “down” in the grocery store. He wants to go “out” on a cold and blustery day. Now he can really make his wishes known and I can go about not granting them.

The other day Mark sent me a link to an article on Slate about the effects of TV on small children. The article made some very valid points about the findings of past studies on children and television being heavily skewed by other factors, primarily socioeconomic ones. I don’t however think their point totally negates my interest in the American Academy of Pediatrics statement that until more research is done on the effects they recommend children age 2 or younger not watch TV. In my mind LOTS of TV could be harmful to Noah, so it’s in my interest to limit the amount he watches.

This TV business is a very loaded subject. One that people have opinions, questions and doubts about on many levels. I am not endorsing no TV, some TV or lots of TV for any kid other than my own. I only know Noah and it’s my job to make decisions for him so that’s what I’m trying to do. As always, it is not my intention to offend anyone with my silly pondering on the matter. I’m just sharing my thought process along the way. And I’m interested what you guys think. The AAP can recommend that mothers dress all in blue and never use their right hand, but unless it works for us and our kids we aren’t going to follow it. So, anyway… here I go.

From the time Noah was an infant and started focusing on the TV until shortly after his first birthday, we generally didn’t have the TV on during his waking hours. This rule was partially made because of the AAP finding, but was really created so that Mark and I would not watch TV during Noah’s time. I’m kind of a TV junkie. If I’m in a room with a running television I will watch the TV regardless of the subject matter (except sports) and what I should be doing. I did not want to be home with Noah all day, barely paying him mind while I watched tons of daytime television that I didn’t even enjoy. And since Noah goes to bed at 8 pm (just in time for primetime), Mark has only 2 and a half precious hours of time with him on weekday evenings, time he needs to spend with Noah and not Judge Judy. So the no TV rule has worked really well for us in that we watch Noah and not TV, and then sink our couch potato butts onto the couch after he’s gone to bed.

Noah does watch some TV now. He knows how to turn it off and on and about twice a day he will say “tee… tee” while pointing at the television to ask me if he can turn it on. I tell him yes and then I make sure the TV is on one of the preschool channels, Noggin or Sprout. He watches a few minutes of it and then either wanders away to do something else or asks me if he can turn it off. Some shows hold his interest more than others – it’s clear that any sort of live action is much more appealing to him than animation. He prefers Barney, Oobi, Jack’s Big Music Show, Teletubbies, and Sesame Street. And I feel fairly certain that these increments of television do more teaching than they do damage. I’ve already seen him imitate noises and motions he’s seen on TV and I can totally see how good programming can be an important learning tool. I’m excited that he’s interested in that annoying purple dinosaur. Barney and those dorky kids he hangs with sing, dance, teach basic concepts and life lessons. (Sure, I say that now when I have to listen to him in ten minute increments.) I guess the struggle for me in the future is to try to figure out a good balance for TV – how much is good, how much is too much and how much restriction makes it even more of a treat.

I have two related stories. Last week Noah had a night where we couldn’t get him to go to bed until 11 pm. And it was a Wednesday! Lost night. I was so fried from spending hours trying to get him to sleep that by 10 pm Mark and I decided we were going to watch Lost on DVR even though Noah was awake. At first Noah just did other things but near the end he got up in front of the television whining to turn it off. To me he seemed generally concerned that we were staring at the TV and not playing with him. It made me feel like crap. I turned the TV off, I felt so guilty. And not about TV but a slightly similar situation- yesterday while Noah was playing blissfully with stuff on the office floor I was reading some blogs and leaving some comments. Noah came up to me and made the sign for “more.” I was asking “more what?” and trying to figure out what he wanted. After awhile I realized he wanted more me. He was asking me to get down on the floor and color with him. Again, I felt a little guilty at first. But then I thought about it and figured if he knows he can ask for me to do something with him and I’ll do it, then that is a good thing. He wasn’t letting me know he was feeling neglected, just that he was ready for some company. At least that is what I hope. We can save his disappoinment for when I won't let him "down" or "out."

So where do you weigh in on all this crap?

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The feasts of Sir Eggerts

Noah is a great eater. We are very fortunate in that way. He eats nearly everything, and lots of it, all the time. But for some reason I’m often at a loss as to what to feed him. I want to make sure he’s getting a well balanced diet and that he’s eating more healthy foods than processed food. But WHAT should I be feeding him exactly. Dinner is the easiest because he eats what we eat. Breakfast is sort of a no brainer because he normally eats some variation of an english muffin/waffle/pancake/toast with some yogurt/apple sauce and fruit. Though I’m sure that is probably getting old. Lunch is the hardest because I don’t eat much of a lunch and therefore I feel like I’ve just been picking out scraps of this and that out of the fridge. So today at the grocery store I was on a mission to find some new food options for the boy. And I didn’t come home with much. I did however make mini-raviolis for lunch and he LOVED them. I also bought a box of frozen meatballs and broke one up with his pasta. So blogosphere – what do you serve a 15 month old for breakfast, lunch and dinner? I need your help.

Monday, February 20, 2006

What is French for Ramp City?

Noah is feeling much better. Aside from some chest congestion and a bit of a hacking cough, he seems the picture of health. His appetite and energy have come back in full effect, so once again I’m just trying to keep up with him.

Saturday Mark, Noah and myself went out to dinner with Patrice, Sean, and Trent as well as our friends Jen and Mark. At my suggestion we went to More Than Just Ice Cream. Aside from the ice cream they have a tasty menu of sandwiches, salads and sides – which can be followed up with bowls full of fudge… I mean ice cream. When I was pregnant Mark and I stopped at MTJIC after an OBGYN checkup. As we were eating we stared at a family nearby and talked about how we could some day bring our son there to eat. To me it sometimes seems difficult to find restaurants in the city that are not family phobic – and this is one of the few that are on our list. The eating, chatting and baby parade made it a lovely afternoon. The blustery wind and icy temperature however made it a bitch of a day to walk around though. Sheesh. I thought the boy was going to have frostbite because I forgot to put mittens on him. After dinner we watched the lovely Ms. Bella for a few hours while Patrice and Sean went to see a movie. It was lovely to hold a warm sleeping little Bella while Mark and I watched “The Sea Inside.”

On Sunday after we got our household chores out of the way my Mom came to babysit Noah so that we could have a belated Valentines meal at La Boheme. I wasn’t as overwhelming in love with the restaurant as I had been the last time we ate there (not sure if the chef changed), but the cooking was still impressive. Very French and very nuevo (tiny flavorful portions artfully laid out on large square plates). And though I consider myself an adventurous eater in that I enjoy trying different flavor combinations and ethnic cooking styles, when it comes to eating certain animals or animal parts I often give a firm NO. And that happens a lot with French food. I selected my appetizer and entrée by ruling out things I wouldn’t eat – no snails, mussels, or octopus for me and certainly no foie gras or calves brains. And I gave Mark my amuse-bouche because it was pickled pig tongue. So though I did ultimately enjoy my meal of an endive, apple, bleu cheese salad and flaky white Dorade fish with licorice sauce, pumpkin puree and spice cake – I also would have felt better about my experience if I had had more options. But I guess it’s my fault for not having a more French palette. And while we were out Frenching it up, Noah didn't even give a hoot that we had gone. He's quite taken with his Grandma.

Today Noah and I met the Milliceccobachs at the Please Touch Museum. The place was SLAMMIN! Not only was it just a busy holiday Monday, it was also Junior Jazz Fest and a band was playing in the atrium. The place felt like absolute madness at first (Dude!Toddlerpalooza), but either it got a bit tamer as time progressed or I got use to it. Noah was a lot more at home on his second visit and really seemed to enjoy himself this time. Though once again he was interested in the stairs and ramps more than anything else. He’d run up the ramp to get in the little play bus, power through the bus paying it absolutely no mind and then go down the steps and back around to start over. Bella too fell in love with one of the ramps. Sean and I decided we should either open an Escher-like museum of nothing but stairs or a place simply called Ramp City. Noah wore himself out so much that he fell asleep on the ten minute ride home. And with no crying. One second looking out the window, next second sound asleep. That is the third time that has ever occurred. Really remarkable.

Friday, February 17, 2006


Tomorrow marks my one year blogging anniversary. I can hardly believe it’s been a whole year. And Blogger reports that I have 447 posts. That's alot of posting.

When Patrice started blogging about her pregnancy she suggested that I blog too. I balked at the idea. Despite scouring the web daily for pregnancy and baby blogs so that I could read about the experiences of others, I couldn’t for the life of me figure out who would want to read about my sore back, insatiable appetite and increasing girth. Plus there was the whole Downs Syndrome scare that we were keeping under wraps so as not to concern everyone and give a negative tinge to our soon blessed event. But after Noah was born I felt I had a reason to blog. I could record Noah’s milestones, share them with interested friends and family and get out of my head for a short respite every day. At first though, I started blogging in secret. I was sheepish about sharing things that I knew some might find dull, and worse yet making those people feel like they HAD to read them. I decided I would tell people subtly, in dribs and drabs. Less pressure for us all, I figured.

And now it’s a year later. Most of our family and friends have visited the blog, some daily, others every couple of months to catch up on photos. I think in that regard blogging is a success – people who want to know the ins and outs of our lives and catch a glimpse of Noah’s little face have a quick reference. It’s also been a successful way for me to get out of my own head. I look forward to blogging every weekday – it’s like my one guaranteed conversation with the outside world. But the unexpected success of blogging has been the people I have “met.” Every day I look forward to getting feedback from you folks. It’s like scanning the horizon for your little prairie dog heads to pop out of your holes and give us a shout to let us know you’re still there. So thank you blogging and thank you bloggers. It’s been a very good year.

Yesterday's news

Note: I spent an unseemly amount of time yesterday trying to post the following. While blogger was having issues I was feeling like I ‘d left something important incomplete. Just a little on edge. And aren’t you glad I’ve such a feverish need to post tedious information about our sleeping habits?

Last night I was feeling all kinds of frustrated and discombobulated. Caring for my cute little sicky can be a bit challenging and heartbreaking. His fever and energy levels come and go, he’s covered in snot, not eating very much and he losing his little voice. His modest croaks are so sad and yet so adorable. He’s clingy, moody and less willing to play independently. So by the time 7:30 pm rolled around I was ready to usher him off to dreamland so I could have my normal rest and recovery time before bed. But Master Noah had other plans. He stayed up until 11! And Mark and I were exhausted and ready for bed by 9, so it was a long evening. However the boy made up for it when he slept from 11 to 8 without waking! You heard it – NO WAKING. Nine consecutive hours of glorious sleeping time. Wow. I guess he was just plum tuckered. And maybe the gentle vapors mentol plugin helped, or maybe it was crazy blacklight that accompanies it. His room looked trippy! Dude.

The sleeping through the night thing is an occasional fluke in our house. And on that note I have to share a tidbit I got from Juliloquy. In response to questions about her 15 month old’s night-waking her pediatrician said that sleeping through the night was a Western expectation, and that in most cultures babies aren't expected to adhere to that adult standard. THANK YOU. Thank you Mr. Pediatrician and thank you Julie. This piece of info eased my mind that we weren’t measuring up and had to do something drastic and unpleasant in order to correct it. Why do we have an expectation that our kids should sleep through the night when most of them don’t? It’s so unrealistic and unnecessary. It’s like we set ourselves up to fail as parents. Do you agree?

This morning Mark decided to call in sick – partially because his cold is still holding on and he needed a day to recoup, partially because I mentioned the option of him taking a sick day yesterday and once you get that idea in your head you HAVE to take one, and partially because for once we actually OVERSLEPT. And I was super grateful to have his help and company today, especially since I didn’t catch an evening break yesterday.

So this afternoon we responded to Noah’s pointing to the front door and pleas of “OUT. OUT.” with a walk to the library and a stop at the bakery for cookies. The weather is fantastic today and just what the illin’ House of Eggerts needed. I hope Noah’s condition turns around tonight. If he’s still running a fever tomorrow morning I need to take him to the pediatrician for a sick visit. Bleck – and I don’t want to have to resort to that.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

If it's Saturday it must be kitchen day.

Blah blah blah tired. Blah blah blah sick. Blah blah blah snot.

So yesterday was Valentines Day. I had intended on going out and buying Mark a pair of slippers he was coveting, but with a sick monkey, I wasn’t able to go anywhere. Therefore Mr. Mark received nothing but cards from me and the little man. Mark came home with flowers on Monday night, so he was already ahead of the game. We ordered Mexican takeout and drank a bottle of wine after Noah went to bed. On Sunday my Mom is coming in town to babysit while Mark and I go out to a French BYOB, so we have that couple time to look forward to. While I agree that Valentine’s Day is a market driven holiday, I think of it as just one more reason to make sure that Mark knows how much I love and appreciate everything he does for me, and for us. And it’s another good excuse to make sure we have time together as a couple.

Maybe you’re Super Mom - and you can wrangle and entertain an active toddler all day while keeping your house tidy and getting things done. I however am NOT. During Noah’s waking hours I can get all of nothing done. So household tasks are put off for after bedtime or on weekends when we can take turns watching Noah and cleaning. But honestly nothing much was getting done after bedtime because we’re both beat from long days, and because there is just nothing making us do it.

Mark is a list and schedule man by nature and over the years he’s converted me. Lists help my failing memory and schedules give me a framework with which to organize our days. Though I was always pretty organized at work, it wasn’t until I was home fulltime that I became interested in becoming more organized at home. In making Me-time Mondays a part of our weekly schedule I’ve insured that we take some time for ourselves every week. And since that seems to be working so well, I’ve decided we should increase our scheduling to include some light cleaning. Call me crazy, but this week I made a chore schedule. Now every night we have a goal, a focus for what we should get done instead of looking around at our overwhelmingly messy house and not knowing where to start. For example, after Noah went to bed last night I straightened the rooms on the second floor while Mark collected and did loads of towels and linens. Today I need to do Noah’s laundry and Mark needs to concentrate on straightening the first floor. And while we both have an assignment each night, the chores don’t need to be done alone, but one of us is in charge of making sure they get done. For instance though Mark started the towels last night, I helped fold them and put them away. The schedule is really just the basics of not letting the house fall into total chaos – there is no dusting or heavy cleaning involved. We usually save those tasks for when we are expecting company, so that while we live in filth we don’t exhibit it. This whole chore schedule is new, so we’ll see how it goes. It sure makes us sound exciting, doesn’t it?

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Congestion and fever don't keep Noah from climbing the steps, they just require him to take an occasional break.  Posted by Picasa

Icky sticky

Last night I told Noah he couldn’t nurse anymore because my breasts had been amputated. He wasn’t buying it.

Needless to say we had another really rough night. I didn’t sleep at all until 3:30 am. It all started at 10 pm when Noah kept waking up because he was too congested. So I had Mark set up the blue sofa in the office with blankets and pillows and then I tried to sleep on it while holding the boy in a more upright position. That worked for him for awhile, though I couldn’t really sleep. At midnight he just completely woke up, and stayed up until 3:30 am, despite many attempts in between to return him to sleep. The nice thing was that last night he was pretty playful and jovial when awake, as opposed to the crying the night before. We read books and built towers of blocks. He was running a bit of a fever and producing tons of goo but didn’t let it stop him. What a little trooper.

And now he’s sticking stickers to the walls. Patrice told me that Bella stuck stickers to paper at daycare, so we tried it here. I bought some of those garage sale stickers, you know the round brightly colored ones to use for pricing. Noah loves to peel them off the sheets and stick them. But not just too paper. To toys, to walls, to himself. I’m sure it’s not a good precedent to set, though I have a hard time reprimanding him about it since they come off so damn easy.

Well, best go start our day. Our sleepy, snotty, fun-filled day. Oh, and Happy Vday y’all. Have I told you lately that I love you?

Monday, February 13, 2006

Not for the weak of breast

Pretty standard weekend. Saturday I got my new glasses and then we took the boy to Ikea to run off some energy before we were trapped in the house by the snow. The snow came Saturday evening and continued through Sunday afternoon. It was our first significant snowstorm this winter. I think the suburbs got a little snow shower in December, but it never stuck in Philly. So first snow – and it’s February. Crazy. I think we got a little under a foot.

As you can tell from the photos I took the boy out to romp in the snow on Sunday afternoon while Mark shoveled the walk. We walked around the block – mostly in the middle of the street since the sidewalks were impassible and there was virtually no traffic. We did however have to make way a couple of times for a truck pulling four men in a row boat through the snow-covered streets. It looked like serious fun. Anyway, the boy was mesmerized by the snow. It was funny to watch him “observe” it as studiously as he does all new things.

Last night was a horrible night for sleeping. To make a long story short:

2:30 am Noah awakes
2:30 am – 3:30 am Noah nurses and nurses and nurses – I’m sure he didn’t get more than a few minutes of milk, it was more about the comfort. Anytime he’d seem to drift off and I’d unlatch him he’d cry bloody murder.
3:30 My nipples couldn’t take it one more second. I too was beginning to cry. So I stopped the nursing.
3:30 am – 4:30 am Noah cried and asked to be nursed almost the entire hour. He kept collapsing on the Boppy at which point I had Mark hide it before he went back to bed upstairs. Noah was hysterical, but I just couldn’t nurse him. I was in pain. And the whole time he’s freaking out I’m thinking “This kid is NEVER gonna wean.”
4:30 – 5:30 am After a little recuperation time I gave in and returned to nursing. It took an additional hour to get him back into his crib without waking. Ouch.

It was a nerve racking, heart breaking and nipple injuring evening. I don’t know if it was caused by teething or the head cold Noah has been developing. Either way, it sucked. I hope we don’t have a repeat of that any time soon, especially not tonight. Today was a lazy day, including a nap for us both from 1:30 to 4:00 pm. Maybe tomorrow we’ll even leave the house. And now I’m off to read a book. Or more likely doze off while attempting to read a book.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

The Eggerts men enjoying quality snow shoveling time.  Posted by Picasa

Walkin' in a winter wonderland.  Posted by Picasa

This white stuff is whack.  Posted by Picasa

Friday, February 10, 2006

No gathering moss

According to the weather reports, we have a blizzard heading our way. Of course we’ll probably get all of 3 inches of snow, but people dream of snow emergencies so the forecast always seems exaggerated. My favorite blizzard moments were being able to wade through mounds of snow in the middle of the impassable city streets to get to the local bar. I don’t foresee that happening anytime soon, unless of course we bring the boy. And what snowed in bar wouldn’t be made better by a random toddler or two?

I chugged to the grocery store early in the morning to buy the requisite milk and bread and beat the pre-blizzard rush. And then we headed to Old Navy and bought the boy a few pairs of pants, as I’ve been unsatisfied with most of his currently fitting pant selection. To put it plainly, most of them are simply not hip enough. And since Noah’s the only one in our house with a wardrobe budget, he needs to look good enough to represent us all. On my way home I considered stopping in to see if my glasses were in yet, but thought better of it. And of course when I got home I received a call to let me know my glasses were in. Figures.

Yesterday went fairly well. The boy slept in the car on the way out of town, and woke up when we stopped to pick up Papa Joe from work. We went to Lifequest Rehabilitation Center to visit with Opa for an hour, made a fruitless stop at a baby consignment store, and then went to The Pub for dinner. The boy ate heartily – particularly enjoying scallops and pickles. And then we went back to the house to visit Oma for a few hours. And then back on the road to get ourselves home.

I had originally planned to go nowhere this weekend, which seems particularly smart since now my men have colds and we’re expecting snow. However Mark’s Dad broke his leg last weekend and called to let us know that he’d enjoy having some visitors since he’s stuck in his second floor apartment. So we might be on the books for another family visit this weekend, that is if the roads aren’t a hazard. I love having family who wants to see us, but I also wish they lived on the next block.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

A wonderful world of fermentation

Last night was lovely. Tria was a great place – and in my mind stood up to the hype. They specialize in wine, beer and cheese – breaking each into its own menu page and then into taste families - and I had all three. In fact I had two glasses of “sociable” red wine, a “stoic” parmigiano reggiano with 25 year old balsamic, bruschetta with brie and marinated cranberries, the Autumn salad of butternut squash, pear, mascarpone, cranberries, pumpkin seeds and balsamic vinaigrette and an “invigorating” glass of Allagash white. YUM. I wish I had it all again right now. Jen and I had a bunch to catch up on and it was the perfect amount of time for me to be out. I left the house at 5:45 pm just as Mark got home and he and the boy were about to sit down for dinner and got home at 8:15 to put Noah to bed. There were a few tears as I walked out the door (Mark), but they were soon quite busy with the typical night time routine. As I said to Mark when I got home “Tonight was perfect. If I could do that a little more often I might even feel normal.”

And because the boy knows I was talking about his sleep problems, or more accurately MY sleep problems, he slept through the night last night without waking. I popped up in bed a few times when he made noise, but he never fully awoke. Good baby. Mark and I are still sleeping in our guest bedroom, but it was a little more comfortable last night because in the afternoon I moved the bed. It had been situated with one side against the wall, and now you can get in and out of the bed from both sides. I’m not sure how much longer we are going to sleep in there – but I’m not ready to move too soon.

Today Noah and I are heading out of town to see Papa Joe. As always I pray to the gods that the driving goes smoothly. The boy started getting a bit snotty last night, seems he and Mark both started developing a cold yesterday. I hope they both recuperate quickly and painlessly.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

An apple a day

Doctors. We tend to forget their people too – with their own theories, skewed perceptions and prejudices. When Bella and Noah have checkups, Patrice and I are often flummoxed by the different approaches and advice we get from our pediatricians. Mark is a listen to the experts type of guy, calling someone “scholarly” is one of the highest compliments he can pay. So when we leave our pediatricians office I have the urge to remind Mark that what the doctor said isn’t gospel. I told him yesterday that I trusted a hundred different mother opinions as much, if not more than a doctor. Mark said the doctor heard the opinions of a hundred mothers so was therefore more reliable – which may be true, if the doctor is open-minded.

So where am I going with this? As I said before, I look forward to Noah’s well visits. I want to get him weighed and measured, ask the doctor questions and get the handout about his development. We take Noah to a practice with over a half a dozen doctors, and when I make appointments I take whomever is available. I like to see different doctors because I can hear their different ideas and also it gives me an opportunity to meet them all before I have to come in for a real emergency. So yesterday we had Doc Cronley. I’d describe her as fairly no-nonsense. She has a firm opinion and she isn’t gonna mince words about it. That can be refreshing when you agree with her and scary when you don’t want to believe her. She asked us if we had any questions or issues and I gave her the big three – 1) Noah won’t drink milk and I’d like to start weaning him a bit 2) Noah only nurses to sleep and 3) He still wakes up at least once a night to nurse. Doc Cronley gave me a slant-headed smirk and asked me if I really wanted to hear what I should do. I knew what was coming so I said “Well… not really, but let’s try it anyway.” In short form she said 1) Noah would drink milk if I stopped nursing him, and if he went a couple of months without drinking milk it probably wouldn’t be a problem especially if he ate any other dairy 2) Noah needed to be Ferberized – leave him in his crib and let him cry it out, that he needed to learn the skills to soothe himself and I was doing a disservice to us both and 3) He woke up out of habit, and I needed to break him of it pure and simple by not going to him in the middle of the night. GOOD GOD WOMAN – why not tell us how you really feel? I told her I didn’t want to leave him cry, that I was reading a book on a no cry sleep solution. She smirked again and asked me what I had learned. I explained that they advocated a gradual month-long process to make the change. Doc Cronley said that if we let him cry it out it would take a couple of days and that was a lot less painful and confusing then messing with their sleep process for a whole month.

So I’m not thrilled with her advice, mostly because I’m pretty sure she’s right but I don’t want to do it. The clincher for me is the fact that while reading the No Cry book I keep going over each suggestion and thinking “Well, that’s gonna make him cry…” and “That’ll also make him cry” and the month long process seems SO long and SO convoluted. But the question is how and when I’m gonna get up the gumption to do this godforsaken sleep training. Will I have to leave the house and make Mark do it alone while I go around the corner and drink a few beers? Maybe they can have me committed someplace. Did your baby cry it out? And if so, how did it go?

So in other checkup news – the boy is 33 1/3 inches and 22 lb 5 ounces, so still tall and skinny for his age. I would have sworn the kid weighed 25 pounds if you’d ask me, and even 40 on some days. It must be those really heavy onesies. And for the first time Noah was afraid of the nurse and doctor touching him. The all-knowing Doc Cronley said it’s totally a developmental thing.

After the doc appointment we went for breakfast at Midtown III diner and then did a bit of shopping – most of it window. The only thing we bought were shoes for the boy. Later in the afternoon I got an eye exam and ordered two new pair of glasses since my prescription changed and they had a half off a second pair deal. I made Mark and Noah come along so I’d be sure not to get glasses that looked horrific on me. I can’t wait to get them next week. They will be the first wearable thing I have purchased myself since before Thanksgiving, aside from the watch I got from exchanging a Christmas gift.

Tonight I’m going out to dinner with my friend Jen Mc. She’s one of the few folks that continues to invite me to go out. Bless her heart. And she’s incredibly understanding and doesn’t even raise an eyebrow when I explain that I can either go out between when Mark gets home from work and Noah goes to bed or not until after Noah goes to bed – because the boy doesn’t fall asleep without me. Anyway – I’m looking forward to getting out for a few hours. I best go and switch my laundry – so that though I don’t have anything new or fashionable to wear, I’ll at least have something clean.

Monday, February 06, 2006

No stupid title

Have I mentioned I’m tired? Today both Noah and I took a two hour nap in the middle of the afternoon. It was the kind of nap where you wake up feeling sort of light-headed, a little ill, and like you haven’t eaten in days. So that’s refreshing.

Last week I was thinking that my lack of energy and poor complexion might mean I was pregnant. I was wrong. Mother Nature came to visit on Friday. I’m not exactly in a hurry to get knocked up again, but I was still a bit disappointed.

On Friday Noah and I accompanied Holly and Tripp to the Please Touch Museum. Noah was a bit overwhelmed by all the kids and the noise, and after a plastic chicken he was touching suddenly started to move caused him to cry, he found the quietest corner in the place and sat down at a table to do puzzles. After awhile he warmed up enough to just run around room after room searching for more stairs to climb. And then taking a play vacuum for a test drive. I think his next visit will be a bit more exciting. The best part of the trip is that I bought a CD of The Greatest Hits of the Muppets. I’ve been singing “Movin’ Right Along” all weekend.

On Saturday morning Mark took our cardboard, paper and plastic recycling to Liberty Lands Park. It was Mark’s New Year resolution to recycle more and he's doing a really amazing job of it. The cardboard and plastic are easy enough to remember but I keep throwing paper in the trash without thinking. But I’m really proud of Mark for taking the initiative. Not only is it better for the planet, but the money the neighborhood association receives for the recycling effort is used to help maintain the park. Later in the day we drove out to Qtown to visit my Mom and go out to dinner. Apparently Noah has decided there will be no more sleeping in cars, so I had to entertain him both ways. But he was amazingly well behaved at TGIFridays – he just kept eating, eating, and eating. In between courses he sucked on the limes that came out of our margaritas. After dinner we decided to let him run off some energy at the Dollar Tree before we strapped him back in the car. He bought Bella some early Valentine treats with his allowance. He's smitten and wanted to make sure he had dibs on her.

Sunday morning we cleaned a bit until it was time to head to Baby Disco with the Milliceccobachs. The club was PACKED – in fact there were families waiting in line outside for people to come out. For some odd reason the music was louder and the disco lights were flashier – but as per usual Noah was more interested in wandering and eating. After the big dance we all headed back to the house for hoagies, libations, boring football and lackluster commercials. Luckily the company was good and the kids were incredibly entertaining. My favorite thing of the night was watching Trent play football with Noah. It nearly melted my heart. I give Trent the MVP award for the evening. Oh, and Patrice brought Noah the cutest book - I read it out loud twice today, and both times I got choked up.

Tomorrow is Noah’s 15 month check-up. I really look forward to the doctor visits – to ask questions and see how he’s doing growth-wise. And Mark took the day off so maybe we’ll go out to breakfast after the pediatrician visit. Well - it's Monday night so I best go get my book.

Noah's mighty excited for the next Electroclash Freak Technowave night at Club Fluid.  Posted by Picasa

Could they look any sweeter?  Posted by Picasa

Friday, February 03, 2006

Don't mess with his crew or their cookies.  Posted by Picasa

Thursday, February 02, 2006

My mom told me liver was steak

This morning Noah tried chocolate juice – that’s half chocolate milk/half milk since Noah recognizes the word “milk” and won’t touch it. I don’t know if it was the chocolate, the new straw cup or the new name, but he drank more of it than he ever has before. Of course that was like a whopping six sips. Baby steps I guess.

Our cat Parker likes to lick off the faucet after every bath or shower. Last night while Noah was bathing Parker jumped up on the side of the tub and got down to business. Noah was thrilled. He immediately began sticking his tongue out, and he and Mark spent a good twenty minutes making licking noises. And next thing you know it the boy was standing up trying to lick the faucet. GREAT. And when we wouldn’t allow him to do it he decided he’d fool us – he began touching the faucet and then putting his hand in his mouth. So as not to miss any of that yummy faucety goodness.

He’s miserable this morning. Too little sleep. I suspect we’ll get a nap soon – though what that will do to the rest of the day’s schedule remains to be seen. It should be a good day – the weather is nice enough for some park time and then we are meeting Mark at his office for a dinner of Indian buffet. YUM!

I love to read. Once I start something I like I can’t put it down. And in the past I’ve considered calling out sick to finish a book – but I don’t think I’ve actually followed through. Maybe once or twice. Anyway, I’ve really been missing it since Noah was born. The only thing I’ve read was the new Harry Potter which I devoured in a weekend. So it’s no surprise that I’m in a rush to finish the book I started on Monday night. I read while Mark mumbled angrily at the State of the Union address, and also last night when he ran out to take our neighbor to pick up her anti-seizure meds. It’s nice to be excited to turn the page again.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

I offer you this to make up for my grumpiness. Yesterday evening Noah delved into the bread drawer and helped himself to a bagel while I was busy preparing dinner. The night before - it was a slice of bread - with all the other slices spread out over the floor. Someone needs to talk to him about his carb intake.  Posted by Picasa

Working for the man

Today when I went grocery shopping the lady at the lunchmeat counter told me it was too early to have given Noah a lollipop. Who the hell does she think she is? He was crabby and started fussing as soon as we got in the store, so if I choose to give him a lollipop to pacify him at 10:30 am it is NONE of her damn business.

I'm super cheery today, can you tell? Feeling tired, low and lonely today. And invisible. Oh, and last night was another stupendous night of interrupted sleep.

I’ve really appreciated reading on Lonna’s blog about extended breastfeeding – both her and Allison make some great points. Honestly I’d be completely ready to wean Noah if he seemed to have any interest in being weaned. But he isn’t. In fact I think he’d still nurse a dozen times a day if I let him. And so I do what I think is best for him. And I’m SO tired of getting the “STILL?” reaction from people. It’s like they think I’m a maniacal freak because I’m nursing a 15 month old. I wish they’d get over it. It’s not like I’m raising him to be a Scientologist.

Now that Noah’s taking only one nap (which can be as short as an hour) it doesn’t leave me a lot of time to myself. As a result everything is missing out – napping, cleaning, laundry, answering emails, commenting on blogs – everything. So don’t think I’ve dropped out a lot by choice, it’s circumstances. Well, the beast awakes. Luckily, he's one lovely little beast.