Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Hodge Podge

- On Thanksgiving morning Noah had asked to watch Oobi- but before we put it on he saw a snippet of the parade and he was hooked. Lucky for us (or unlucky as the case may be) I recorded it since Noah has been asking to watch some of it almost every day. In particular he wants to watch “The doggy one” in which Goofy miraculous appears during a trick promoting Mickey’s Magic Show, the rousing performance by Singabration, and the Christmas medley featuring dancing elves and toys. If I didn’t so love watching him enjoy it, I might have clubbed myself by now.

- We have started prepping Noah with the prerequisite Christmas lies about Santa and whatnot. He’s really excited for what sounds like “Kimsump.”

- Though Noah obviously had a penchant for horses, I had not yet given him a book about them – bad mother that I am. Last week we went to the toddler story time at the library only to find out that the theme that day was indeed horses. Of course he loved it and we brought one of the books home. “Giddy Up! Let’s Ride” by Flora Mcdonnell. It’s a week later and Noah has the book memorized. You ask “How does the cowgirl ride?” and he says “Yeeha! Yeeha!” “How does the jockey ride?” “Faster and faster. Faster and faster.” “How does the princess ride?” “Jingle ringle. Jingle ringle.” “How does the rahjah ride?” “Rumpetta- trump Rumpetta-trump.” It kills me every time.

- I don’t know how I’ve gone so long without mentioning this. We play blocks A LOT. And for some unknown reason whenever you ask Noah what he is building he says “A sour cream store.” With as many as that boy has built, Sam Breakstone better watch his ass.

- My Dad keeps a bowl of Hershey Kisses out on his end table and since the moment Noah had his first one he goes straight for the bowl as soon as we enter the house. On Thanksgiving morning we pulled into Dad’s driveway and still in his car seat Noah said “I want chocolate.” Dad also takes out to dinner fairly regularly when we visit. Last weekend when I told Noah that we were going out to a restaurant for dinner he just assumed his Pa Joe was going to be there.

- “You’re my best friend, Mama.” It melts your heart. Even if he keeps telling everyone their his best friend. Today it was his plastic lizard.

- For his birthday Patrice gave Noah some Crayola bath tub tints and now he’s hooked. We used the last of them tonight and I’m fairly certain he won’t bathe without them tomorrow. Either I’m going to be making a mad dash to find some more or Noah’s gonna have a hard time going cold turkey.

- Christmas is coming and I've already started my bah-humbug shopping attitude. My solution to some of that is to buy at least a portion of my gifts from charities that retain a portion of the profits. That way even if the recipient doesn't give a crap about the gift whose suitability I've spent forever pondering , at least someone in need has benefitted before it gets shoved in a closet or regifted.

- Oh and I'm ill. Nothing big. Just cholera. Somehow we'll get through. So far I'm thanking my lucky stars that I'm the only one afflicted.

Saturday, November 25, 2006


Though I don’t really consider us to be potty training Noah, we do put him on the potty before and after his bath. He pees on the potty every night and while I do congratulate him, I try not to put too much emphasis on it.

On Friday in the midst of getting the house in shape for our Black Friday Leftover Potluck Party, we decided to give Noah a shower since we wouldn’t have time that night for our bedtime bath ritual. Afterwards he spent a great deal of time running around our room naked. Suddenly he cried out “Potty, Mama! Potty!” And when I looked over at him I first saw his very distressed face before I realized he was pooping on the floor (thankfully not the new carpet). I kind of squealed before Mark made me realize I was having a negative reaction, and then I just scooped him up mid-poop and stuck him on the potty where he continued to go. When it was all done we congratulated Noah for pooping on the potty like a big boy.

At the party I was holding Noah and telling Wendy that Noah had pooped like a big boy on the potty. Noah looked earnestly at Wendy and said “I pooped on the floor, actually.” We just about died.


Mark, Noah and I went to dinner at A Full Plate Café. Noah was looking at a plastic flashcard book my Mom bought him when he was a newborn. It’s always been a good bet for keeping him busy in a restaurant or in the car. Each page has a picture of an object and the corresponding letter of the alphabet. He’s looked at it enough to turn to the first page and say “A is for Apple.” But now he’s actually starting to look at all the letters. He’s beginning to read. Tonight he read to us “O R 2 Jeff – Goldfish.”

Monday, November 20, 2006

I think I'm already stuffed

I was feeling crestfallen on Friday. Earlier in the week I was really excited when a new friend of mine had decided to take me up on my babysitting offer. She had been putting her 15 month old daughter in daycare from 8:30 to 12:30 on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday so she could have time to do some freelance graphic design work. However even after a few months her daughter had not seemed to have adjusted, so she was really excited about my offer. And I was excited that I knew and liked them, and I’d be making some much needed cash. However the fates taunt me and on Thursday her daughter had her first ever good day at daycare. And now of course she doesn’t want to pull her out just as she is getting adjusted. So I’m back to square one. Ho hum. Luckily I had a couple of inquiries about when I might be available so hopefully something pans out.

On Friday night we did babysit a little 18 mo girl who lives down the street from us while her parents went to a concert at the Kimmel. Noah and her were a great pair – running around after each other giggling. She was excited to follow him and Noah wasn’t intimidated. It really was a good mix. On Saturday we went to Frannie’s second birthday party and the mix wasn’t so good. One of Noah’s little friends scares the bejezus out of him. He’s not very verbal and so he resorts to loudness and exaggerated movements, he’s also a close talker and he wants to play huddle all the time. Noah asks about this boy often and looks forward to seeing him but when they are together I can’t get Noah out of my lap. It’s a shame. The boy is really sweet too – he’s not aggressive just excitable. I was going to invite his family to our place for a gathering of friends on Friday, but decided not to so that I won’t have to carry Noah around all night. And I feel just horrible about it.

What else have we been up to as of late? Well we spent a couple of hours this weekend cleaning out our concrete slab/yard. It had been rendered unusable this summer when a neighbor’s tree overgrew our entire space and banished any chance of sunlight. Therefore it was covered in leaves, damp and mosquitoes for months. Much to my delight the neighbor finally had the tree removed and as a result we were able to sweep out our yard and let the slab dry out. Noah has even been blowing bubbles and hanging in the sandbox out there. We were heartily saddened when our dinner plans with Juliloquy were cancelled due to HPR’s illness on Sunday evening – Noah had even baked them pumpkin oatmeal muffins. But on the upswing we can look forward to getting together with them again soon.

And the boy is of course super-lovable every day. Any negative moment I might have is fleeting when faced with his sweet and sunny disposition. Some of his most common sayings are “I want lovin,’” “Cuddle me,” and “I want kiss you, Mama.” (And today he repeated me when I said "Oh JESUS!" when a guy flung open his car door in front of me as I was trying to drive down a narrow street. Oops.) This isn’t to say he doesn’t have his testy moments, because he is TWO! But he is still thankfully such a sensitive, caring and thoughtful boy and his moodiness and testing passes quickly. I normally just have to mention a time out and he falls back into line quickly. (Knock on wood!)

Of course we have been on our normal schedule this week. We had playgroup today. Tomorrow we’re meeting Wendy and Victor at the library in Port Richmond for story time, and then headed over to their place to play and chat. Wednesday is music class and last minute Thanksgiving grocery shopping to prepare our bring-along dishes. On Thursday we celebrate our abundance with lunch at my Dad’s and dinner at my Mom’s (with the in-laws also in attendance.) And on Friday we’re having a few folks over for our Black Friday Leftover Pot Luck. It should be a lovely holiday. Hope yours is filled with appreciation, family, friends and love.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

We could all use a little Jeanne Bice.

Hey. How’ve you been? I know. It’s been awhile. Your hair is getting really long. I like what you’ve done with it. Oh thanks, yeah – new shoes. Where have I been? Hard to say really. Nowhere in particular I guess. And yet busy. Ya know, doing not much of anything. Just following a routine, enjoying life and my family. Not much more than that to say. But I’ll try.

Yesterday I sent an email to a neighborhood parents listserv offering PT childcare in my home. Ideally I’d love to watch another toddler like 9-2 pm, twice a week. It would bring in just a little extra income to help fight our burgeoning debt, but not have a huge impact on keeping Noah active and involved on a daily basis. Keep your fingers crossed for us.

This weekend my 11 year old sister Jessica came to visit. We enjoyed a beautiful warm weather day at the Zoo on Saturday and made the best of a rainy Sunday at the Art Museum, followed by a tasty late lunch in Chinatown. Noah of course loved having his An-Jess here and is missing here dearly. Whether Jess had a good time or not, I can’t say. She seems to have started that quiet, brooding tween thing – and though I don’t think she had a BAD time, she certainly wasn’t as happily expressive as she has been in the past.

Sheesh. The holidays are coming and so the scheduling has begun. Who is going where on what day – trying to see everyone and balance all the expectations. I don’t want to disappoint anyone. I get freaked out about it every year. Almost as freaked out as I get about gifts… well, not nearly THAT freaked out. My Grammy called this morning asking what we wanted for Christmas. I have no earthly idea. Noah is up to his ears in clothes and toys from his birthday – and yet I am expected to give all my family members strict orders for what the boy should get for Christmas. It’s lovely to say this – but he doesn’t need anything. And then the BUYING! Coming up with penny-pinching thoughtful gifts for everyone that won’t just get shoved in closets is impossible. If I had the cash I’d just buy everyone gift certificates to cool stores and restaurants they might enjoy, but even those don’t always seem to get used. This year everyone is getting Quacker Factory. What could be more FESTIVE than sequined Santa shirts for all?

And the boy is still amazing me every day. His language skills are amazing. It’s hard for outsiders to see because he can be so shy, but at home he talks CONSTANTLY. And he’s a little bossy too. He loves the game where we just run around the kitchen table and he says “Be horsey! Be kitty! Stop! Dance around! Get down! Sleep! Wake up!” And he’s still obsessed with Beck and those puppets. (I know the youtube link no longer works but you can go to, go to video and then select the SNL performances or the robot video for “Hell Yes.”) This morning shortly after he awoke he said “Mama is puppet. Noah is robot. Daddy is Beck.” And he doesn’t miss a thing. Out of the blue he’ll start talking about how his playgroup is in Fishtown, and if we’re in the car I should “Drive Broad Street.” I say something once and he repeats it the next day, leaving me wondering where in the hell he learned that. And as smart and big as he’s becoming, he can’t be seduced by me telling him what big boys do. Nope. He says “I’m baby, Mama. Not big boy. I’m baby.”

Friday, November 10, 2006

Scientology rocks

And the call goes up “Watch puppets, Mama? Want watch puppets.” I’m guessing we’ve watched this clip nearing 30 times in the last couple of days. I can't get near the computer without hearing the request. Today we even watched the robots.

Monday, November 06, 2006

There are no real birthdays without balloons.  Posted by Picasa

Delish! Posted by Picasa

Love found and lost. The day after Halloween Stella's Mom dropped a bomb - her husband got a job offer and they are moving back to Atlanta... in a week and a half. Today we went to Stella's house to say goodbye. This is most likely their last hug.  Posted by Picasa

Run over by a birthday truck

Deep breath. The last two weeks have been a whirlwind – culminating in not one, but two lovely parties for Master Noah. Both were well attended and sufficiently celebratory – so I think we did a bang up job. The toddler house party seemed a bit too ambitious – what with 12 toddlers, 3 infants and 22 adults attending – but it proved to be an excellent idea in the end. The kids were well behaved and the parents were very excited to hang out with other parents, talking and drinking beer. And best of all Noah really enjoyed himself – I had visions of him clinging to me the entire time wondering why all these damn people were ruining his birthday – but he had a blast. I think it was a plus for him to have the home team advantage. He had a couple of moments of wanting to be held or far off in a corner playing on his own, but for the most part he was totally interactive and enjoying himself. And that is SUCCESS. The family party was an interesting proposition because my mother hosted not only her immediate family, some friends and her in-laws, but also my Dad (they were divorced when I was five), my half-brother and his kids. A truly blended family makes for some awkwardness, I was concerned about my Dad feeling comfortable and Mark was concerned about his Dad, but generally it was a hit. As always we worry far more than we need. Everyone was there to celebrate Noah and that is the real icing on the cake. We’re really blessed with a group of loving, supportive people who know how important it is to us that we all be together.

The best part of all of it is that this year Noah knew the parties were for him and was so excited to see his loved ones and know they came for him. Oh, and they brought presents.
And good lord – THE TOYS! I have so much gear here that I could open a daycare center. Of course the morning after his first party we asked him what he liked about it the most and he said “Happy Birthday cake! I blow on it.”

I could say SO much more – but I’m beat and have no focus, so I will spare you for the moment. We thank you all for your warm birthday wishes.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Of all the photos ever taken this is my favorite. This was Noah moments after he was born at 8pm on 11-04-04. He was so small, so precious and so primal. He changed my life forever - infinitely for the better. I will be forever thankful for the person he is and the person he has made me. Happy Birthday Noah Mac! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Months ago I asked Noah what he wanted to be for Halloween. I explained to him that he got to dress up as something and showed him pictures in a catalog. Without faltering he told me he wanted to be a "neigh neigh." I wasn't in the least bit surprised. Sure, I would have loved to dress him as something badass, but the boy knew what he wanted. Except I didn't know where in the hell to get a horse costume. I scoured the internet. And the only ones I found were on ebay. His costume was ridiculously cute in a sort of annoying Anne Geddes way, and it kind of looked like it could have been a squirrel costume, but it also had a button on it that you pushed and it played a horse sound. And well, that is just super cool. Plus there weren't any other horses to be found, not at his playgroup party and not in the neighborhood, and so I give points for originality. Posted by Picasa

We didn't go trick or treating - but our neighborhood park had a halloween parade. Parents just met at the park and then marched the kids around the block. Noah walked almost the whole route holding hands with Stella - she's The Very Hungry Caterpillar in the background. You may recall the picture of the two of them holding hands at the apple orchard. I'm beginning to think they are a thing. Mostly because Stella demands it. Her parents had to hustle to catch up with us during the parade because she was asking to be with Noah. She cried when they were seperated at the end of the evening. It may be love.  Posted by Picasa

Princess Janette and the dastardly dragon Jules joined us.  Posted by Picasa