Sunday, July 31, 2011

A is for...

APPLE
As I've mentioned before, Addison is not one to put objects in her mouth, not even food. She refuses to taste teething crackers or dissolving snacks. She has almost ten objects specifically designed for chewing on when teething, and she rarely puts any of them in her mouth - and when she does, it's just for a couple seconds. She's clearly not ready to move on to stage 3 foods, because she seems to have a problem with any kind of texture entering her mouth. But yesterday, she became extremely interested in the apple I bit in to, and wanted to try for herself...



She mostly got covered in juice, but she did get a little bit of apple, causing her to scrunch up her face, close her eyes real tight, and push it out with her tongue. Then she went right for the apple again.

(Note: I had originally set this up as a Picasa slideshow, but when I embed it in the blog, anyone can click on it and gain access to my entire Picasa content. Can anyone help me out with that?? I'm not real good at that stuff, and Matt and I are never in the same place long enough for me to make that a topic of priority.)

Saturday, July 30, 2011

I knew this day would come

There is a game I play on my DS that resembles Wheel of Fortune, and one of the puzzles I seem to get a lot is "Necessity is the mother of invention," or something like that. This blog was invented out of necessity - out of the need for me to sort out the wide spectrum of thoughts swirling around in my head as I prepared for, and eventually experienced, the daily joys and challenges of motherhood. I needed to make sense of it all, and the public outlet was my personal form of therapy. By documenting all my dark, horrible thoughts for anyone to read, I was taking the weight off my shoulders. And it was fantastic.

The day has come though, in which the need that my blog was invented for exists no more. Thoughts of feeling guilty for not immediately falling in love with my baby have been replaced with my scrambling to drum up a picture worthy of posting for Totally Cute Tuesday. I've gotten bored with writing, and it shows. My early posts were deep, thoughtful, and interesting (to me, at least). Now they are brief, to the point (linear, according to Matt), and shallow.  When I read back through my posts of the past couple months, rather than being sucked in, I'm bored. And I'm sure you are all bored too.

But sorry, I'm not gonna stop blogging. In five months, five years, or any number of months or years down the road, I will be sad if I don't have mommyhood documented. And since I can't seem to muster up the energy or creativity to complete a scrapbook of Addy, this is all I've got! And I really want her to be able to explore this when she's older - to experience her life through my eyes. I want her to be able to laugh at her funny pictures, and be able to understand how deeply I love her. And maybe one day, when she's pregnant and unsure of herself as a soon-to-be mother, maybe she will read my blog and know she's not alone.

So since I'm currently bored with writing, and I'm bored with trying to figure out what to write about, or if I'm being funny enough or emotional enough or interesting enough...since I have so many stupid little things I want to post but can't seem to justify devoting an entire post to topics such as how many times she farted today...I'm creating a new series of posts. Most will probably be pictures or videos, some will have text and thoughts...but the series will give me a chance to get a little creative. Many of you seem to look forward to Totally Cute Tuesdays, so hopefully this also will be something to look forward to. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Totally Cute Tuesday

Fun with hamburger buns...
well, only the crumbs of hamburger buns...





Saturday, July 23, 2011

Guilty Confession

If I were ever going to send a submission in to Post Secret, it would be something along the lines of:


I've attended three weddings this year.

I've shaved my legs three times this year.


That's an average of once every 2.66 months. And, since I've already grossed you out with my major self-neglect, I might as well tell you that not one of those three times did I shave my entire legs - just right above the knees. Are you wondering how I got away with this? Well, when you're only giving up sex a couple times a month, the guy really isn't going to care if you have hairy legs or not. Just sayin. And also, I don't voluntarily wear clothing that reveals my legs. Oh, and I probably used less heat during the winter since it's like a built in blanket. That's right, I'm using what evolution gave me.

Friday, July 22, 2011

20 clicks for baby...

One GIANT victory for mommy!

I think the most challenging and frustrating part of mommyhood thus far is the shame I feel when I look at my daughter's overgrown fingernails and toenails. I suck at clipping them. 100% suck. I've tried sumo-wrestling, headlocking, sneaking-when-half-asleep-in-carseat, and hey-look-at-baby-einstein-not-the-nail-clippers. Sometimes I'll get a couple nails clipped before she over powers me (yes, the eight month old over powers me, hence, the shame).

But today I got them ALL! All ten fingers and all ten toes!!!!!!!! How, you ask? A super sly combo of:
  • comfy slouching position in corner of couch
  • baby einstein
  • 8 ounce bottle
  • impeccable timing of just before nap time
  • (food coma successfully induced)
  • clip nails!
I'm brilliant. And it only took eight months to get there.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Sunday, July 17, 2011

A night off

Matt gave me the afternoon/night off...what to do, what to do?????

First: Get a dress for my dad's wedding this Saturday...


Second: Turn this massive pile of a year's worth of bills and such...


...into this organized filing system:


Third: Turn this cluttered closet full of clothes that don't fit Addy...


...into this much more empty, but organized closet:



And I did it all in only 4 hours! Whew....time for dinner.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

This is what we think of sweet potatoes


That's a sharp contrast to what we think of peas!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Separation anxiety

is in full swing.

And anxiety it is. For all of us.

Addy has been hinting at it for a few weeks. Nothing major, she just gets upset if mom and dad aren't in her viewing area. Totally manageable. But last night? The poor little thing was a mess. Aunt Stephanie watches her every Thursday to give Matt and me a break (cuz she's totally awesome like that). But yesterday, I had to leave before Steph could get there because it was inspection day at our hopefully-soon-to-be new house (yay!!!!), so Grandma Susan came over to fill the gap. Addy was down for a nap when Grandma got there, and I left before she woke up. Big mistake. BIIIIIIIIIIG mistake. When Addy woke up and it wasn't mommy or daddy coming to get her, she fah-reaked. For ten minutes, she wouldn't even open her eyes. She ended up throwing up three times, gagging on really thick mucus that Aunt Steph had to pull out of her throat, and was completely inconsolable for over an hour. Matt and I had planned to go to dinner with my dad and his fiance for my birthday, but little miss drama queen was too outta control, so Matt went home. She calmed down as soon as she saw daddy, but clung tightly to him for 45 minutes. He finally got her to bed about an hour later than usual.

So, apparently, Addy is a sensitive little thing that needs to take the whole "time away from mom and dad" routine very slowly. We are going to Aunt Steph's house tonight for a gathering, and we've decided to let her spend the night there. Matt and I will put her to bed, but Aunt Steph will be there when she wakes. She will be spending the night at Nana and Papa's house next Saturday, as we will be attending my dad's wedding - so consider this a practice run.

I'm a nervous wreck. And I doubt I'll be getting much sleep on my very first night without a baby in the house.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Product Review: Alano Flip-It Travel System

Matt and I didn't spend too much time looking for the right stroller - seriously, one night at Burlington Coat Factory while picking out our bedding, we took a quick glance at the strollers and immediately picked the one we wanted. Within five minutes, we had agreed that we would get the Alano Flip-It Travel System by Graco. It seemed smaller and more compact than the others on the floor, and it seemed easy enough to operate. It also has a neat feature that allows you to flip the handle, so the baby can either face you or face out.



Now that I've been using the carseat and stroller for eight months, I feel qualified enough to give my review.

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 stars.

Pros:
  • Easy to open and collapse (after a little practice)
  • Lightweight and very easy to maneuver
  • Zippered pouch on the backside is very handy
  • Safety straps on the stroller are easy to use and adjust
  • Handles on both the infant carrier and stroller are comfortable
  • Assembly was relatively easy
  • Nice price point (at Burlington Coat Factory)
Cons:
  • Cup holder hanging off the side gets it the way, and I'm constantly bumping it into things
  • When the handle is flipped, the stroller is very difficult to steer, and you have to walk at an awkward distance behind it to stay clear of the wheels
  • Sun shade on stroller does not block very much of the sun
  • Straps on the infant carrier are difficult to adjust
I wanted a stroller that I would feel comfortable pushing, and also not feel like an idiot fumbling with it trying to get it out of the car and ready for baby. I'm happy with the purchase, but I do kind of wish we would have spent more time looking at different features. Now that I've been around some other strollers, and know a little more about traveling with a baby, I would probably pick a different one if I did it over again.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

The American dream: Part II

Back in March, I made a post about maybe buying a home. In it, I listed my ideal parameters:

"...a house that's about 1800 square feet, with a 2-car attached garage, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, a large kitchen with lots of counter space, a nice deck, a big back yard, a woodburning fireplace, and a red front door, all for $120,000 or less."

Since then, we have looked at 22 houses. We put an offer on one in Wadsworth, but it was declined. Last night, we put an offer on a house in Copley - well, technically, it's Akron, but it's Copley-Fairlawn school systems, so major bonus right there. Here's how it stacks up to my wish list:

  1. 1800 Square Feet - WIN - it's got a whopping 2200 Square Feet!
  2. 2 car attached garage - WIN - and it's oversized, with access leading to a bonus room above the garage
  3. 4 bedrooms - (almost) WIN - 3 bedrooms, with a finished room above the garage, plumbed for a bathroom
  4. 2.5 bathrooms - LOSS - it's got 2 full bathrooms, but see comments on #3
  5. Kitchen - WIN - freaking awesome open kitchen with an island and stainless steel appliances
  6. Nice deck - (sorta) WIN - it's decent, kind of small, we're in negotiations to have it redone
  7. Big back yard - MAJOR WIN - the lot is the last house on a dead end street, completely private huge back yard surrounded by trees
  8. Woodburning fireplace - WIN - how about two of them? Yeppers.
  9. A red front door - LOSS - but it's a nice front door anyway
  10. All for $120,000 or less - LOSS - it's on the market for $134K but we offered less, along with a list of items to repair/replace/install/etc.
So, in summary, that's 7 wins and 3 losses. I am totally psyched about this house. It has been flipped, so roughly everything inside it is new - carpet, laminate flooring, tile, appliances, paint, fixtures, windows, doors. And if we get our way - garage doors and openers, patio door, security system, and wood decking. I know it sounds like we're asking for a lot, but this guy said he's pretty much willing to do any additional work for the right offer. He just didn't want to pour any more money into it without a prospective buyer. The exterior does leave a little to be desired - it's cement block that has been kinda covered in stucco. I would like to put siding on it someday. And the landscaping needs some attention, but since it's the last house on a dead end road and no one lives across from it, I think we can get away with being lazy for a year or so.

So, cross everything you've got - fingers, toes, arms, legs, eyes, shoelaces, gonads. Whatever you've got. I want this house.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Totally Cute Tuesday

"I see you kitty...but how do I get to you with this thing in my way"

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Why a trip to IKEA is in my future

It's a mini-kitchen for Addison to play with!!!!!!!!!!! A dear friend of mine just posted a pic of her little boy using this, and I've decided we have to have it some day. I wanted to get the Fisher Price kitchen - you know, big bulky plastic thing covered in primary colors. Okay, so I'm a little selfish, and I like my surroundings to be nice, with neutral and earth tone colors, so the thought of having that big bulky brightly colored plastic kitchen in my house kinda made me gag a little. But, in the interest of developing my child on a healthy level, I was gonna get it anyway. But THIS!!!!!! This is freaking awesome! I can encourage role playing and imagination, all while continuing to enjoy my surroundings?!?! IKEA, you're my new best friend.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Breaking the chains

There's a Bare Naked Ladies song I've always identified with:

When I was born, they looked at me and said
What a good boy, what a smart boy, what a strong boy.
When you were born, they looked at you and said
What a good girl, what a smart girl, what a pretty girl.

We've got these chains hanging round our necks
People want to strangle us with them
before we take our first breaths

Our society expects boys to be strong and girls to be pretty. And as we raise our children, our interactions condition them to fit this mold as best as possible. It's difficult to break free of this because it's how we were treated growing up, it's what we've always seen, and so the pattern continues.

And though I wanted a girl, the ability to raise a girl who is more interested in books and culture than makeup and clothes is a difficult thing to do in today's media-rich society, where she's going to be constantly bombarded with images of the "perfect" girl.

A friend of ours, whose daughter is one month and one day older than Addison, posted the following article on her facebook wall. I found it very interesting and wanted to share...

How to Talk to Little Girls

Next time you're given the opportunity to interact with a little girl, I encourage you to try what the article discusses...try and break the chains we're bound with at birth.