Thursday, January 31, 2008

Oh. My. Heck!!!

Today is bittersweet. The new season of Lost kicks off in about 14 minutes, and to say that I am beyond excited is the understatement of the year. And yet, and yet... I distinctly remember the night that Season 3 wrapped up last May, and thinking two things. Number one: I don't know how I'm going to make it til next YEAR before this show comes back on. Number two (thought while gazing down at my 7-week-old baby girl): by the time that day comes... my maternity leave will be almost over... so although it seems like a long time away, I know it will be here in the blink of an eye.


I did get my request for 3 additional weeks of leave approved, so I officially am back to work on March 31. Two months from today. That's still a relatively long time, and I intend to enjoy every minute of it. There are only 8 episodes of Lost in the vault (bloody writers strike - I don't understand the whole concept of strikes - like, when is the last time you saw a Capacity Management Administrators' strike? Bah.) By the time I go back to work, Lost may well be off the air again. It could be in the blink of an eye.

(XHD is on the other machine... no photos today.)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

As if there weren't already enough reasons to cry while reading The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver had to go write a passage like this:

"But the last one: the baby who trails her scent like a flag of surrender through your life when there will be no more coming after - oh, that's love by a different name. She is the babe you hold in your arms for an hour after she's gone to sleep. If you put her down in the crib, she might wake up changed and fly away. So instead you rock by the window, drinking the light from her skin, breathing her exhaled dreams. Your heart bays to the double crescent moons of closed lashes on her cheeks. She's the one you can't put down."

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Our weekend: part II

On the way home from Great Wolf Lodge, we took a run down to the falls, because really, it seems like sacrilege to go to Niagara Falls and not see the Falls. And we thought Liam might enjoy it, too.Well, it was hard to tell. There was so much mist swirling around that visibility wasn't great. He could definitely tell there were falls there, but the spray was soaking us so we didn't take more than a quick look. Mallory was snoozing in the stroller but did wake up long enough to take a quick look. I don't think she saw much though as I wasn't really comfortable dangling her over the guardrail. :)
I snapped a photo of each of the kids in front of the falls - proof that we do educational, even mildly fun things with them, like dragging them off to see the wonders of the world - but you can't even see the falls behind them on account of all the mist and glare, and had we moved to a spot downriver where the visibility was better, we would have gotten drenched from the spray that was blowing that way. NOT good for the camera. So our trip was brief and our photos few.
That's OK though - we will definitely be back. I am a diehard Maid of the Mist fan and when we're bored one summer weekend, you can be sure I will drag Chad and the kids down for the ride. It's pretty awesome.There was a Japanese tourist (well, hundreds of them, but one in particular) who thought Liam was a sight to see and asked him to pose for a souvenir photo. For himself, not for me. Too bad I didn't get that guy's email address... maybe he got a better shot than I did.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Our weekend: part I

We spent the weekend, as I was saying, at Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls. Our company organizes a trip once a year and I wanted to go last year but, being hugely pregnant, decided against it. This year with Liam being that much older, it made a lot more sense to go. The water park at the hotel is massive, but we only made use of a tiny fraction of it. Though we had our moments of trading off, for the most part, Chad stuck with Liam and I played with Mallory. Mallory and I lounged in the hot tub (kid-friendly; more like a warm bath than a hot tub), the shallow end of the wave pool, and Chipmunk Cove. Chad chased Liam up and down endless flights of stairs, and caught him after endless waterslide splashdowns. Liam might have been old enough to go on one or two of the bigger rides, but he never worked up the nerve, and there was certainly enough for him to do without us pushing him.

We invited the Barrs along on this trip but once there, we never really saw each other. Their girls are old enough to brave the big stuff and they don't have that naptime thing to worry about anymore, either. We did meet up for dinner on Saturday night but that was pretty much it. Cindy was there with her family, too, and Liam got a big kick out of seeing her out of context like that.

The facility was great, and we will definitely go back. Lots of organized activities for the kids for when they get too waterlogged to want to spend anymore time in the water park. The rooms have enough of a kitchen facility that you can bring your own food and not have to rely on the hotel restaurants. Plus, hello, it's in Niagara Falls - nothing like killing two proverbial tourism birds with one stone.

The waterpark, which is always 84F with about 110% humidity, is no place for camera equipment (the people I saw wading through pools with cameras in hand sent chills up my spine!) And, it never failed that right when I was ready to get a good snap, somebody with terrible back hair or in a swimsuit three sizes too small would wander into my fame. Ugh. I did manage to snag a few shots, and I like to use this scrapbook template for any event when I want to showcase an absolute ton of pics. So there's nothing original here, but it gives you an idea of how we spent our time.

It must be said, though, that a weekend getaway with kids involved is not really a 'getaway' at all - oh, the packing, the unpacking, the laundry, the meal planning that's involved! To top that off, earlier today we had an agents' caravan of about 15 real estate agents tromp through our house. We're not officially on the market yet, but we're willing to entertain prospective clients. After the busy weekend and then all that was involved in getting ready for the agents... I need a break now. I'm off to put my feet up.

(Ahhh... the blessedly quiet drive home!)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Whatchoo lookin' at?

We're going on a road trip this weekend!... heading out to Great Wolf Lodge for a little mid-winter getaway. This is fantastic on many levels: we haven't done anything even remotely vacation-y for quite some time, and I can hardly even remember the last time I was outside of our city limits. Liam is giddy over it and I can't wait to see how much fun he has. (Hopefully there is something there for Mallory to do...)

Having said that... there's a flip side to every coin. The flip to this one is that we are going on a group rate being offered by our office's social club. Which basically means that we will be running into coworkers at every turn. The point of a getaway is to leave the everyday behind, but this scenario may well have me thinking about work more than I have in a long long time... not something I really look forward to doing.

Additionally, we're going to a WATERPARK with our coworkers... meaning we will all be wearing our bathing suits in front of each other. Not only do I not want to imagine a lot of my coworkers like that, I don't want them seeing me like that, either. I made a resolution a few weeks ago (you know, when it was the 'in thing' to do) to lose 15 pounds prior to going back to work. (I needed the deadline there for a purpose - I need to be able to fit into my work clothes!!) But it hasn't been going well. It's not my fault, though. First, my evil sister gave me an ice cream maker for Christmas, and what kind of ungrateful sister would I be if I didn't put it to use right away? And second, I discovered Pioneer Woman's chocolate cake and oh, my... is it ever good.

Oh well. This lack of weight-loss progress didn't stop me from heading out this morning to stock up on munchies and treats at the grocery store - I hear the food at the hotel is way overpriced and not even good - and this afternoon we are going to whip up a batch of cookies and another of muffins to further sate the hunger that all the swimming and watersliding is bound to create. It's a good thing that ice cream isn't portable and the chocolate cake is really quite messy... otherwise those could well be making the trip with us, too!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Picture day

We spent this morning at Deanna's house doing some more maternity shots for her. (Deanna is just one month away from having boy-girl twins; how cool is that?) Deanna was kind enough to snap a photo of me with each of the kids at my request, and here's the one I wound up with of Liam. Whenever I try to have my picture taken with him, I can usually get him to smile (usually by tickle, or threat thereof), but he's always doing his shifty eyes. It used to drive me nuts, but now I know that's just him, and I actually kind of like it. It makes the picture seem less contrived.

It's funny how the unplanned things usually wind up turning into the best pictures, at least where kids are involved. While I like this shot of Liam and I quite a bit, I don't think it tells even half the story its full, uncropped version does:If this doesn't perfectly epitomize the little sister who's always trying to tag along... I don't know what does. If I were going to frame one of these to put up on the wall, I think the full version would have to be it.

And, yes, I got a shot of Mallory and I, too, just to play fair.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

And an addendum to yesterday

Today I took Mallory down to baby playgroup, and the guest for today was a nutritionist. How's that for timing? She was taking questions from the crowd and it did cross my mind to ask her about the nutritional value of pet kibble for babies, but... there was a large group. And I was a bit too embarrassed to ask.

Out of sorts

Last night, Chad and I undertook a major cleanup of our house, which involved relocating a lot of toys out of the playroom to other spots: some in the living room, some in the basement, and some just plain old hidden away.

This morning, Chad offered to drop Liam off at Cindy's house, saving me and Mallory from having to make the trip. And Mallory chose to sleep in; she wasn't out of bed until Chad and Liam were already out the door.

So when Mallory came downstairs, couldn't find her toys, didn't know where her brother was and then rounded the corner to the old cat food locale only to find, poof, no trace of it remaining -

Well, I wasn't surprised when she started to cry. It was all just a bit too much.

(My photos aren't uploading right now, so no visual for today.)

Monday, January 21, 2008

Just like the ocean - don't turn your back on her

This morning, again, Mallory was into the cat food and she ate goodness knows how much by the time I caught her. I didn't think it was taking me all that long to throw a load of wash in, but in hindsight I did spot-treat a sweater of hers that had carrot stains on it, so it was probably longer than I thought.

Anyway, the damage was done. Have you ever read the ingredient list on a bag of pet kibble? Besides the fact that the first item listed is Chicken By-Product Meal, which is bad enough in and of itself, there is also "Powdered Cellulose 10% (source of fibre)" - which means, what, ground up trees? Well, at least they justified it, right? - as well as "Chicken Liver Flavour" (no wonder she keeps going back for more, right?) and a bunch of multi-syllable things that really don't sound like food, like "Pyridoxine Hydrochloride".


Last week, on our vet's advice, we bought one of those circulating water dishes, the kind with the pump in it that is supposed to aerate the water and encourage your cat to drink it. Captain refuses to drink out of anything except from a vase of flowers or a running tap, and we're getting sick of him breaking vases and also sick of turning on a tap for him and having to wait for him to finish to turn it off again. So the pricey little water dish seemed like a good idea (except that I have yet to see him use it, so it might be money not well spent). The dish has found a home in the basement, the only place it is out of the way but still close enough to an outlet to plug in, and the executive decision has now been made to relocate the food along with it.

I am a bit worried about doing this, because I am an out-of-sight-out-of-mind type of person, and I fear that I will only remember that the cat needs to be fed once a week or so. (Then again, we've been told that he needs to lose a considerable amount of weight, so this may in fact be in his best interest). Worse still would be forgetting to keep the water dish filled. Regardless, I would rather risk Captain skipping the odd meal than having Mallory fill up again on "Pork Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid)".

No wonder she wasn't really hungry for her lunch.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Said by Liam, while driving to the cabinet shop to start planning our kitchen

"Maybe they will have some Spider Man kitchen cupboards we can buy!"

Yeah, buddy, maybe. Wouldn't that be wonderful!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Children, order, sanity

Ah, the elusive trifecta. As the old saying goes, you can only have two of the three. You can have children and sanity, but your house will be a mess. You can have order and sanity, but only as long as you remain childless. Or you can have children and order, and lose your mind in the process.

For the past year, it hasn't been so bad that I can only pull off two thirds of the ideal. I don't care too much if the house is strewn with toys, so long as it's clean (and there's nobody coming over.) But now that we have the prospect of selling our house on the horizon... I am completely freaked. There is just so much STUFF, especially since Christmas (a toy kitchen may be Liam's dream come true but man, it takes up a lot of real estate!)

Also, that cleanliness thing I was talking about has grown increasingly elusive now that Mallory is a force to be reckoned with. There are bits of food mashed into the carpet and upholstery, sticky dribbles on the floor that attract dust like magnets. And let's not pin it all on Mallory. Liam has contributed some dribbles of his own to the floor around the toilet, and I can't be washing the bathroom floor with every single visit. Usually I am doing well if I can just keep Mallory away from the toilet while Liam is using it!

And, I have to admit, I've gotten lazy. I used to vacuum the floor multiple times per day on account of how much food gets dropped on it. Now, I just pick up the bigger chunks by hand, and run the vacuum through once. I don't mind cleaning if I can see the evidence of my handiwork, but now when I clean, it doesn't last - and it's frustrating. It's all too easy to think, why not put it off - since it will just get dirty and I'll have to do it all over again?

The good news is that, by the time our house hits the market, I will be back to work. Which means that we will all be spending a lot less time in it. And maybe that's the key. The house gets such a workout when we are in it and actively using it all day long - raiding the kitchen, rummaging for toys, leaving evidence of life in our quakes. When the kids are off to Cindy's for the day, and I'm off to my cubicle - well, I hope our agent can work some magic during those daytime hours. Because outside of 9-to-5, all hell will still be breaking loose for years to come.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Why I do what I do

Recently, Mallory has become a really chatty little thing, and I am always trying to listen closely to catch that a-ha! moment when she first really and truly speaks. With Liam, he babbled for months, sounds that we thought might be something but then again, maybe not; by the time we realized he was actually speaking, we had sort of missed the momentous date. But I can’t remember when that was. Was he nine months old when we realized he was talking? 12 months? 15? What was the first word we recognized from him? It couldn’t have been more than a couple of years ago that it happened, and it ranked right up there on the chart of babyhood milestones, and yet I’m drawing a complete blank.

I have a terrible memory, most of the time. That’s quite a claim to make when I got straight A’s in school (until university, anyway :P) and can remember the most inane trivia imaginable, a feat that, for years, got me invited back to join my old work colleagues in the annual trivia challenge – even after I had left their group – even when I was on maternity leave. (I was not asked back this year, and I’d like to point out that this was the first time in 4 years that they did not place in the top 3).
The problem is that I don’t remember the details of my own life. I chat with an old friend from high school all the time and she is constantly talking of the things we used to do and the fun we used to have. When she mentions these parties and road trips, they sound vaguely familiar to me, but they are definitely not details I can recall on my own. Likewise, Chad remembers every date we ever had, the names of all the people we’ve met and meals we’ve eaten on our travels, the exact timeline and process of buying and fixing up our first house together. To me, it’s all a blur. A happy blur, but a blur nonetheless.

I have a grandmother who is alive and kicking in her mid-90s, but she suffers from Alzheimer’s, and I often wonder if I will face a similar fate. Maybe all the warning signs are already there.
Now that we have these precious, precious kids, it saddens me even more that I am so awful at remembering stuff. I never want to forget how it felt to hold them when they were tiny babies or how their eyes lit up when they saw something for the first time. I want to remember the adorable things they say and how they make me so proud.

And so, I document it. I write about it and photograph it. I try to commit it to memory by reliving it while recording it; and if that fails, then I will always have these volumes of stories and pictures to look back on. How I hope that the emotions all come flooding back every time I revisit these moments as they do now while they are being created; that the day will never come that I am reading it for seemingly the first time.

How I hope.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Look! Look! I finished my book!

Back in November, I was sifting through my scrapbook stash and saw that I had a lot of cool old stuff I wasn't using. I decided to make a mini book highlighting our holiday activities with the idea being that I wouldn't buy anything new for it. Well, I did buy the chipboard base for $4.25, as well as two sheets of rub-on alphabets from the dollar store. But the rest was found around the house. Some pages are mounted on chipboard... some are photos, printed and punched and put directly into the book... some are transparancies and some are ephemera - a ticket to our breakfast with Santa, a card Liam got in the mail, etc.I've been delinquent in posting lately, and it's all on account of computer stuff. Our internet connection is on the new machine, but all my photo and graphic stuff is on the old machine still, and it's becoming a PITA to constantly shuffle back and forth. I need to shell out the $90 for Photo Shop Elements on the new machine, but I hear a new release is coming out soon, possibly even this month - so I'm trying to be patient and see if that holds true. Having said that, I think I am a true Mac convert - there are so many cool features. I'll never go back. (Assuming I can get PSE up and running, of course!!)Mallory and I just came home from baby playgroup, where we attended a baby yoga class that was pretty dismal. I think to do baby yoga, the baby can't be more than about 5 months old. Mallory howled when I tried to lay her on her back and she didn't want to be held during any of the poses - just wanted to crawl around and poke the other babies and steal their suckies. Not so very relaxing. I took my camera, but the only ones getting any shots were the spectators.

Right now, Mallory is parked in front of the TV, watching 4 Square and chewing on her long lost Sophie with which she was just reunited (thanks Steph!) I need to get her away from the TV, though I also have my new issue of Wondertime which just arrived in the mail and I'd love to sneak a few minutes to read it. There's an article on Mommy Blogging - maybe it's what I need to get the mojo going again.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

9 months

Dear Mallory,

You’re nine months old now!… and the past month has been a true whirlwind. This month we contended with major holidays, tons of outings, bouts of sickness, food issues, sleep issues… you name it… it happened. And you pulled through it all like a champ.

In December we celebrated your first Christmas. It was hilarious to see you so nonchalantly act as if you knew exactly what was going on. We took a picture of you standing beside Liam as you both opened your stockings… and the look on your face says that you are not at all questioning why you are pulling new toys out of an oversized sock. It was wonderful to celebrate as a family of four, to have your presence enhance Liam’s excitement, and to finally have a vision of what our family holidays will be like for years to come. You received lots of great gifts and didn’t even seem to mind when Liam commandeered them as his own – of course he would find the baby toys way more fun than anything he had asked for and received!

You were a real trooper through many long days of visiting friends and family, something that was even more amazing to me because on December 21st you came down with your first stomach bug. We were at the Barrs’ for Cory’s birthday dinner, sitting at the dining room table, when you just leaned over, opened your mouth and spewed everywhere! You threw up in their dining room, in their kitchen, in their sink, all over Megan, in our car, in your room, all over me… all told, you threw up at least twenty times until finally you were just dry heaving. The next morning you woke up cheery as usual, ate your breakfast and seemed to be doing fine. So we went ahead with our holiday plans, making trips to see the extended Cook family that day and the Robinson family the next. Unfortunately, on our drive home from Stratford you started vomiting again, and Gramma and Grampa Cook spent Christmas Eve in bed… Gramma and Grampa Robinson followed and were down for the count on Christmas day! Half the Barr family caught it, too, and who knows how many extended Cooks. Congratulations, girlie – you single-handedly decimated our entire family! (Not that you are truly to blame; it was Liam, after all, who brought the bug home to you.)

After you were sick, it took a good 10 days or so for your appetite to return, and during that time, all you wanted to eat was pureed fruit and yogurt. So, essentially, that’s all I fed you. When you did get your appetite back though, you thumbed your nose at the baby food – basically went cold turkey on it. So that was that. You are still eating baby food cereal but otherwise you eat what we eat now, and do so surprisingly well, since before you were sick, you spit out anything that was the slightest bit chunky! Now you are eating quesadillas and salmon, Yorkshire pudding and roast chicken, pizza and pasta… even the odd French fry. That is the end of shopping the baby food aisle for us.

Then, just this week, you went on a 24-hour nursing strike, spurred by I-don’t-know-what. You have a cold, though the strike ended before the cold has cleared, so I can’t attribute it to that; you hadn’t lost your appetite and your interest in the boob hadn’t seemed to be waning prior to it. And just as suddenly as you went off, you are back on again, nursing your normal three times per day. I am glad to have you back, little nursling. I was not ready to see you go so soon!

One of the best developments this month is that you now sleep through the night. This was not something you started on your own, however. It was over the Christmas break, while Chad was off work. You woke up much earlier than normal for a feeding one night, and I got up and fed you, but swore when I put you back in your crib that that was it for the night. So when you woke up again at your usual time, I refused. I thought it would be a good time to let you cry, seeing that Chad didn’t have to get up for work in the morning, but I admit that I did not expect you to cry as much as you did… nearly an hour and a half, all told. The thing about letting a baby cry is that you have no idea how long it’s going to last, and once you start, you really have to stick to your guns and not cave – or else all that crying was for nothing, and baby will only cry harder next time. We were sure the next night would be better, but that night you cried for an hour and fifteen minutes. So it was better… just barely. But every night since then, you have either slept straight through, or been able to settle yourself quickly if you do wake up. And this leaves us saying, oh my lordy be – why didn’t we try this so much earlier??

This month, you learned how to clap your hands, wave, and stand (momentarily) on your own. You went sledding for the first time and thought it was a hoot – too bad Liam threw in the towel after just 2 runs and sent us all home. You spent a couple of half days with Gramma and Grampa Cook so we could take advantage of Chad’s vacation time to run some errands for our new house, and you did wonderfully with them – hopefully a sign of what’s to come when you start going to Cindy’s.

At 9 months old, you weigh 18 pounds 2 ounces and are still (roughly) 29 inches long. Over the past few weeks you have developed a steadily worsening all-over rash, and I was saddened to hear it diagnosed at your 9-month checkup as eczema. Lots of eczema sufferers are really miserable – itchy, uncomfortable, and at a much heightened risk of developing asthma later in life. And I so hope that won’t be you. So far, we have been able to keep it in check. We’ve added a cool mist humidifier to your room and slather you in lotion after your baths, and we have yet to see you scratching. I hope we can make it through a couple more months of winter and see things clear up again when the warm weather returns.

We are now firmly entrenched in the doldrums of January, which is normally a cruddy time of year, but I rather like it right now. In a couple more months, I will be back to work. I like that the hustle and bustle has died down and the days seem a little longer right now. I am just trying to soak up every little moment with you.


Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Nursing strike

I know I was just gushing about her newly sophisticated palate... maybe that explains why she is now on a nursing strike. Yesterday she woke up from her nap early, cranky and miserable, and since then she has refused to nurse. She's not even trying and then calling it quits - she has gone completely cold turkey.

Her cold has taken a turn for the worse, which I hope explains things. It can't be easy eating like that when your nose is totally plugged. But if that were the case, I would expect her to at least give it a shot before calling it quits. *sigh* I don't think it's an ear infection, since we were just at the doctor's and her ears were checked there. And I have a hard time believing that she is just ready to be done when she was so interested in it just the day before - it's not like her interest has been waning. Weaning is looming on the horizon, but I was hoping to at least make it to a year, if for no other reason then at least so I can avoid having to learn the ins and outs of formula. Though I do still have that free can sitting in the pantry from oh-so-many months ago. :)

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Random Tuesday

Over the past few days, Mallory has eaten lasagne, grilled cheese, salmon and Yorkshire pudding, all with great gusto. I think it is safe to say now that her baby food days are behind her. I have a hilarious video clip from a couple of days ago, when we got the latest round of flyers, wherein Liam takes the grocery store flyer, sits down with it and starts listing off all the things we should buy this week, ending each statement with, "...because it's on sale." Like, "We should get some Oreo cookies, because it's on sale." One of the things that's on sale this week is baby food and he was clearly puzzled that I didn't stop by to pick up a few jars. Too bad I don't have the camcorder wired to the new computer yet or else I could upload it here. Hmmm.... maybe I will work on that this afternoon.
I took Mallory to see Dr. Bailey this morning and I'm afraid that her rash (which is doing better but which is still very much present) is eczema. The good thing about this is that she has all-over-her-body eczema but does not appear to be the slightest bit itchy - so for an eczema sufferer, she has it good. The bad thing about it is that she has eczema which is very often a precursor for asthma. And while there are worse things she could have, it breaks my heart to think that Chad and I, who (try to) live a very active lifestyle, may have a child who has difficulty with that someday. Anyway, there's not much we can do about it and no sense in worrying now about what may or may not come to pass. We've been running a cool mist humidifier in her room for the past few weeks, which seems to be helping, and lubing her up well after her (infrequent, curtailed) baths. So at least it's under control.
Otherwise... not too much is new. So I'm off to get the movie camera, and see if I can't get one more thing converted. Maybe I'll get that clip up here after all.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Back to normal

Chad is back to work today and we are back to our usual routine: If It's Monday, We Must Go Grocery Shopping. Holidays are all fine and well, but there is something to be said for knowing what's coming next that I also enjoy. Lately I have been thinking a lot about going back to work. About 80% of me is dreading the day, for two reasons: one, of course I will miss the kiddos like crazy. But two, I fear that it's going to take me forever to catch up again, to remember what is what, to figure out all the changes that have occurred since I was there last. (Can I add a '3'? I have NO IDEA how we are all going to get out the door in the morning, since it took me til 10:30 to get us out to the grocery store today, and prepping for a full day away from home - well, it will just be that much harder.) On the other hand, 20% of me is looking forward to going back, simply because work is my normal and the sooner I go back, the sooner the uncomfortable 'new girl even though I've been here for 11 years' syndrome will end. This does not make my return to work sound promising, I realize, but just a couple of weeks ago, the proportions were more like 90%-10%. So I'm getting there.I have a bunch of stuff that normally I would post, and some administrative stuff (like updating links) to attend to, but still being in the midst of computer-switchover mode, I will leave it at just a few photos - we finally moved Mallory to a big kid car seat. She is actually in Liam's old seat, and he's been promoted to a new one.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Again with the Christmas thing

Over the past few days, I've picked up several strands of lights and some new stocking holders on clearance - having great fun planning for our first Christmas in our new house. I still have a few Christmas projects from this year to finish up though, a point that was driven home when I was out and found a store fully stocked for Easter - can you believe it? I know Easter is in March this year, but come on. Anyway, it made me think I'd better get these projects finished off before I lose my Christmas momentum entirely. So with Chad out of town for a few days, and the newfound capability to print photos at home, I thought I would tackle some of them, then get my crap cleaned up and packed away for next year. Except that it hasn't quite worked out like that. I did finish up a couple of scrapbook pages, but the holiday minibook I am almost done putting together will have to stay like that - almost done - for another day. The kiddos decided not to take coincident naps today and now that both are finally in bed, at nearly 9 p.m., I'm thinking I'm just about ready for bed myself. That, or just ready to peruse the On Demand library and find a movie to order. Hmmm... Hairspray, Sicko or Knocked Up?...

PS - Mandy, if you're out there (trying again)... where have you gone?

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Bring on the salsa and queso

We're still enjoying some holidays (or at least Chad is) so I am not fully back to a regular schedule yet, including posting, and by now much of my Christmas is just a distant fog so it will never likely see the light of day. It's gotten me thinking I need to get a few comments down for posterity before I lose them entirely.

There's been a lot going on with Mallory lately. Besides being the carrier of the flu bug that decimated our entire family, she has recently developed a terrible case of dry skin/eczema/psoriasis. I don't know exactly what it is but she is rough and scaly and red all over. Poor little thing. As luck would have it, our doctor's office has been shut down for the past two weeks and I haven't felt the need to drag her into the ER for six hours, so we're making do. She has her 9 month checkup on Tuesday so we'll have it checked out then. At least it doesn't seem to be bugging her.

She totally lost her appetite for 7-10 days after she was sick. For a while there I was coddling her and feeding her nothing but applesauce and yogurt since that's all she wanted. Lately I have been trying to push the vegetables and other good stuff again without much luck... she is finnicky and simply won't have it, especially if it is the slightest bit chunky (like the stage 2 foods). Then, on New Year's Eve, we were out to dinner and of course the wait for our food was forever... and we had long since run out of the baby food I'd brought for her. So I started handing her french fries and pizza crusts (yep, I am KFC Gravy Mom, no denying it anymore!), and she gobbled them up. Yesterday we were having chicken quesadillas for lunch and Liam (who is now battling a cold and feeling peckish) didn't want any of his - so I handed them to Mallory - she inhaled them too (that's what she's eating in this photo). I am starting to think she doesn't want mush and should go straight from the purees to big people food.

Finally, the best development of all - the past two nights she has slept STRAIGHT THROUGH and it's all because, about a week ago, we decided to let her cry. Which she did, let me tell you - for two nights she wokes up for her normal feeding and bellowed for more than an hour before settling back down again. Then for a couple of nights she woke up 2-3 times and settled herself after just a few minutes each time. And since then, it's been blissful, solid sleep (except for the rest of us all coughing and hacking all night long). Ahhhh. It's been nine months in the making, and I'm so happy that the day has finally come.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

It wasn't me!!!

I hear that half of the Roberts family is miserably sick now, and yes, we did see you at the get-together on Saturday.... but that was six days AFTER Mallory's last round of flu... so you didn't get it from us!

Now, the Cook and Clingersmith families who we saw on the 22nd, on the other hand... you, you can blame us. I am almost afraid to ask how many of you came down with it!

PS - Mandy, if you're out there, where have you gone?