Tuesday, April 29, 2008

A case of perfect timing

Last night, Liam showed the initiative to wear underpants to bed, and against my better judgement we decided to let him try it. I mean, far be it from us to discourage the final phase of potty training, right? Except that I knew he probably wasn't ready, and sure enough, he wasn't. When I got up this morning I went into his room to wake him before he had the chance to wake himself and whiz in his pants before he was really aware that he was not wearing a diaper. Of course, I was too late. He was already soaked down to his toes and up to his armpits, having seemingly drunk something by the gallon before going to bed last night, and he was chilled enough to indicate that he had been like that for some time. He was also perfectly happy. Why he refuses to come get some help from us at times like that is beyond me.

Anyway, we stripped off the bed, threw some stuff in the wash and other stuff on the floor (to decide whether to dry clean or just plain toss out; there was pee on the duvet, on the pillow...) We high tailed it out the door. And wouldn't you know it, today was the day we got five minutes to pull the house together before a showing. Just enough time to cover the duvet and throw it back on the bed (aired out, though not really clean); no sheets, no pee pillow, and no mattress protector (NOTE TO SELF: do NOT forget to put that back on before bed tonight!!) I hope there were no hairs in the bathroom sink and no crumbs on the kitchen counter, but Liam's bedroom was top priority today.

It's been that kind of a week. Yesterday I hauled butt into the office half an hour early, dreaming of what I'd do on my Friday off this week, only to discover that the summer hours don't start until NEXT week and my first Friday off is not until two weeks later. *groan*

Monday, April 28, 2008

Another one, er, two bite the dust

I have an entire post written in my head about the whole process of Selling a House, and I think I will commit it to the computer soon, before the time has passed and it gets away from me. It’s not the right time to make it public now, though once this is all behind us, the day may come.

However, I can tell you about the showing that is taking place at noon today. There were showings yesterday and Saturday and Friday, so the house is in good shape overall. But as I was running around this morning, wiping down the sinks and picking up the puzzle pieces and making sure there are no fingerprints on the fridge (note to self: am completely out of stainless steel wipes!), I kept hearing voices. The TVs and stereo were off, so it took me a while to figure it out, and then it hit me – it was Elmo’s voice, and it was coming from a little Elmo cell phone of Liam’s.

The thing is, I nearly turned the house upside down trying to find that damn phone, and I couldn’t do it. And I swear the little Elmo inside that phone was throwing his voice, because I kept thinking I was getting warmer, only to realize that I was nowhere close to locating it. The more I searched, the worse the house started to look. Toys strewn everywhere, etc. The exact thing I’ve been nagging the kids about for the past two weeks.

So I eventually gave up, and left for work, and I’m sure the Elmo phone is still talking (though I hadn’t heard it in a while before I left; I did pick up the toy bucket and give it a good shake in the hopes that, if the phone were inside, the other toys would shift off the phone and stop pressing its buttons). I sort of resigned myself to the fact that we might lose this potential buyer to the thought that our house is possessed. And I was OK with that… I mean, I’ve heard worse stories. (Like someone not noticing the dog had pooped on the carpet until AFTER the showing – yikes!) But when I got to work and got a message that we have another showing scheduled for tonight, I started to worry again… I can deal with the thought of maybe losing one buyer, but two does not sound good.

Oh well.
(Thank goodness we are at least going through this at this time of year... because then Chad can haul the kids off to the park while I do the final sweep through the house each time we show it. What on earth do people do when they're trying to sell their house in November??)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Making Uncle Darin proud, one page at a time

Things continue to be crazy-busy. Thankfully I am not fully immersed in work yet, because there is enough other stuff going on to more than compensate for that! It's a bit of a drag not being able to just enjoy hanging out with the kids when I am not at work, but it's a temporary situation, and it will all be worth it in the end. I hope. :)

Last night Mallory was yawning and rubbing her eyes by 6:30 - her normal bedtime being 8:00 - but when we tried to put her to bed (at the normal time), she howled. This is very unlike her, and at first I thought it might be her teeth bugging her; she has one molar through and another on the way, and they both look awful - swollen, ragged, gaping - ugh. But her mouth didn't seem to be bugging her, and I think I finally figured out that, tired as she was, she just wanted to spend more time hanging out with us. This is the sad part about going back to work. I know she thoroughly enjoys her days with Cindy, but our weekday routine as of late has not left a whole lot of hanging out time for us. And it just so happens that her starting daycare, which would have been enough of an adjustment on its own, coincides with one of the busiest personal times we have ever had.

Luckily, our company is offering flex Fridays again this summer, and you know I'm all over that. Work an extra hour each day in order to get every other Friday off. I will cut my lunch hour in half to make up some of the time, and try to get into the office a half hour earlier each morning. Chad will drop the kids off at Cindy's at the usual time so that their day isn't lengthened any, and then he'll stay at the office a bit later to make up his time. Unfortunately we will feel the loss of the lunch hour - since I have started back to work, it's been prime kid-free errand-running time! Anyway, the new hours start next week, and I am busy making plans for our first long weekend already.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Springtime on Elizabeth Street

You know it's spring when Chad drags out his lawnmower, cursing all the way, and Liam drags out his, as full of glee as you've ever seen him.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Epistle ahead (don't say I didn't warn you)

Dear Liam,

It’s hard to believe that you are 3. Although I can only vaguely remember what life was like before we had kids, it does not seem like long ago that you were a tiny newborn. Yet I look at you today, and you are all skin, muscle and bone. Your face is chiseled, your legs are like toothpicks and there isn’t a speck of fat on you – a far cry from the Pork Chop nickname you earned when you were only one month old.

I compare you to Mallory a lot these days simply because I find it hard to believe the incredible difference that two years can make. Mallory has just learned her first word, but your speech is so good that we no longer need to dumb anything down when we talk to you. This is going to come back to bite us one day, I am sure, because we don’t censor anything we say in front of you, and one day I think you are going to spit out something personal and embarrassing, something we never expected you to understand or retain, in public! The leap from first word to fluency has surprised me in its speed.

A true preschooler now, you are fully comfortable with your body, but still frustrated by its limitations. You can run, jump, and climb on just about anything, but it maddens you when you can’t reach something up on the counter or if you are having trouble getting yourself dressed. You want to try these things on your own, and we are often barred from your bedroom even as you cry tears of frustration when you can’t get your shirt on over your head. You waver between wanting independence and wanting help from mom and dad. It’s help we’re definitely willing to give, if only you will take it.

You are a very un-picky eater and like just about everything, though of course if we call something a ‘treat’ your ears perk up! You decide on your own breakfast now, choosing what kind of juice to drink and selecting between cereal, toast and waffles (if we have leftovers from the weekend). You are starting to rummage through the fridge to look for snacks or to help get lunch started if I’m not getting on it as fast as you would like. You still love all kinds of sauces and dips for your food. You feel so proud and grown-up when you have a bottle of water, just like your dad.

About 6-8 months ago you learned how to work the DVD player, and you love your little collection of movies. In a typical preschooler rut, you would rather watch the same movie over and over again than see something new on TV. Luckily, though, the TV is far from your only interest. You still like to emulate real life – one of your favourite games is when I set up some of our pretend food in a ‘grocery store’ and then you gather it up with the shopping cart, check it out at the cash register, bag it in one of my reusable grocery bags and unpack it again in your toy kitchen before cooking something up and offering it to me for lunch. You still really like puzzles, and recently tackled your first 48-piecer. Your love of books (especially at bedtime) has held steady. But more than anything else, you still like to play outside, and hallelujah for the warm weather at last because as much as we’ve tried to get out this winter, it just doesn’t compare to being outside when it’s nice. You would rather pull your wagon around the block (oftentimes now with Mallory inside of it) than do just about anything else, and anytime you tire and slow down, and we offer to relieve you, your strength magically returns and you surge ahead.

When we are outside, you could entertain yourself for hours. You like sidewalk chalk and basketball and playing with your wagon and the ride-on toys. You like scanning the sky for vapour trails, identifying birds and spotting ant hills and worms. The flowers are poking up now, and you like to point out the latest bloomers. You like going for walks and can now cover quite a distance on your own two feet, though you are also very content to ride in the stroller when we need to cover ground a bit quicker.

Your pretend play has paved the way for you to do more real life tasks on your own. You get dressed by yourself… mostly. You brush your teeth on your own, with just a quick finishing up from one of us. You like to put your own dishes in the dishwasher and to help unload it when it’s clean. You help me put away clean laundry. You help load the cart at the grocery store, and unpack the food into the fridge and cupboards at home. The one area you don’t like to help with is picking up toys, and it’s still a mystery to me why you are so helpful in all other areas but when I ask you to pick up, you quickly tell me that you’ve moved onto something else and that you are busy. We’re working on it.

You are still an incredibly sensitive little boy, and so very well behaved. If someone speaks sharply to you (and this only ever happens if you are about to do something that could get you hurt), it’s enough for you to start bawling. Something as innocent as a “Look out, Liam!” when you get in the way of an oncoming cart at the grocery store will set you off. You are still too little to reason with, and we have a hard time explaining to you that we’re not mad at you – just acting in your best interest. I hope that lesson will be learned soon because it’s heartbreaking to cause you to get so upset.

This year, you grew into a wonderful big brother. You welcomed Mallory without any jealousy. You mostly ignored her when she was a newborn and not of much interest to you. But as her ability to keep up with you has improved, you have become good at including her and being kind to her – most of the time. You still don’t like it when she tries to join in and play with you uninvited, especially if she comes after pieces of a puzzle you are putting together, or blocks you are building with, or food you are cooking. But you point out to her when her favourite show is on TV, and you like to dance with her in her bedroom before bed, and you enjoy sharing the bathtub with her at the end of the day. You have helped to ease her transition to daycare and you report back to me what kind of day she has had each night.

You still catch your breath when you hear a siren, and speculate as to its origin: ambulance-police car-fire truck? You are starting to ask “Why?” an awful lot. You report on the number of school buses you see each morning. You come up with sayings that crack us up with their maturity. A little while ago, your dad said Winnie the Pooh was yellow, and you replied, “Actually, dad, Winnie the Pooh is orange.” And you said it with just enough authority and attitude that it was hysterical. Out of the blue, you will make statements about your cousin and your friends and events that took place several months ago, statements that still leave us surprised by what a good memory you have.

We threw your first ‘friend’ birthday party this year, and although you kept quiet through the whole thing, you clearly enjoyed being the centre of attention and having your friends there to play with you. You will never be Mr. Outgoing, but you can hold your own now. I no longer worry about you being the kid nobody wants to partner up with in gym class. Is that such a horrible thing to say? – I don’t mean to sound, well, mean, but to see you developing socially like this – well, it makes me very happy indeed.

The past few weeks since I have gone back to work have been somewhat unsettling. I sense a bit of detachment from you, which I think is an adjustment to us spending less time together. I can only hope that it passes quickly. You are more important to me than anything else, and my number one priority in life is to make sure that you know it. Even when your dad takes you through your nighttime routine and I am busy getting Mallory settled, you still refuse to go to bed until you’ve had some cuddle time with me, and I can’t tell you how happy that makes me and what a great way to end the day it is. (Even when I suspect that you are just stalling for time. Stinker.)



Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Is this progress?

Tonight, after we ate dinner out on the back deck for the first time this year, Mallory ate a few pieces of pear. And then a few more. And then she deigned to try the watermelon I'd put on her tray about half an hour earlier. And then she polished off the whole lot of it.You would not think that this is a big deal, but the fact of the matter is that she really hasn't eaten a fruit or vegetable for the past 4-6 weeks. It all happened rather suddenly; she had been eating fruit with gusto (the veggies a little less so, but she was getting them down nonetheless). And then one day she just woke up and decided not to touch them, even the ones she used to love. I still serve them to her five times a day, and each time she very deliberately picks them up and drops them on the floor, or else she just smears them around a bit and then ignores them.
So for the past six or so weeks, her entire diet has consisted of carbs, carbs, and more carbs; milk; yogurt; cheese; and the occasional bite of chicken or fish. Her fruit and vegetable consumption has been limited to the stuff you find in pizza and spaghetti sauce, a few raisins here and there, and small bits of fruit I've been able to disguise in yogurt to smuggle into her.

Anyway, I have spent the past month quite certain that she is going to bung herself up and require a trip to the ER for an enema or some such, so it's quite a relief to see her eating some of the good stuff again (though I am under no illusions that she will do it again tomorrow). I will call it a victory for today - and that is good enough.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Working for the...

Last week was exhausting. You really don't realize how much your kids lick the windows until you beg them not to do it and then, because they don't listen, chase them around with a bottle of Windex to clean the tongue marks up after them. We showed the house Friday night and Saturday morning and by Saturday afternoon I think we'd all had enough with the don't touch that, put this away, stay out of there... So we decided to enjoy ourselves for the rest of the weekend - and we did just that.
Mallory went for her first bike ride.
And blew her first bubbles.
Liam got some scooter practise in.
We all went for a walk.
There were two upsides to all this outdoor activity. One, all the time spent outdoors = less time spent indoors and less time to muck it all up as a consquence. And two, all that fresh air made for some very long naps. For all of us. :)

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Did you miss us?

Still alive and kicking... just having a jam-packed week. Showing the old house, lots going on with the new house, busy at work, Mallory cutting two molars and Liam perhaps entering the "Terrible Threes" after we escaped the "Terrible Twos" unscathed... I mean, really, is there a valid reason for him to throw a tantrum when I go in his bedroom? - lately he has been trying to set a lot of not-going-to-fly boundaries. You are three years old mister (and just barely!), and your mother is going to go in your bedroom if she wants to...

Hoping life gets back to normal soon... though I think this is normal, now.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Buy me!

It will be another 12 or so hours until we're in the realtors' MLS systems and then another 24 hours after that for our house to show up to the casual user, but... yikes... we are up for sale! Just hoping for a fast sale now to undiscriminating buyers who don't mind seeing the occasional dust bunny and who give us about 48 hours notice for the viewing. Oh, yeah, and meeting our full asking price would be nice, too.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Three, continued

Birthday week (fortnight?) is now over at our house. Phew... enough with the frosting, the candles, the helium balloons dragging around on the floor way past their prime! Liam's party was a resounding success. We woke up to snow yesterday, so thank goodness we didn't go with that Hawaiian luau theme - spring weather can be so fickle!! The Wild Zone made for a great party destination. The kids had an absolute blast and Liam, who we all know is not the most extroverted kid in the world, was having so much fun that - gasp! - he chased some of his guests around! And he let them chase him! You know he is too caught up in having fun to be self-conscious when that happens. :)

The locale was indeed a bit lackadaisical, so I am glad that I was forewarned. When it was five minutes past meal time but the party room was empty, the table not set, the pizza not there and no employees to be found anywhere - I probably would have freaked had I not known what to expect. As it was, I set the table and opened the fridge to help myself to the drinks. The employee, when she showed up, was about 16, and she was a nice enough young thing that I will forgive her for only getting my Spider Man balloons blown up about 20 minutes before the party ended.

Liam scored a lot of great loot that we really don't need, but... he's so happy with it. He keeps telling me who gave him what. He's done all the puzzles at least once already. He's the kind of kid who loves it when all six guests at the party decide to help him open the gifts - it was so fun to watch. I love making him happy. I can't wait to throw him another party. But I don't want him getting any older... not yet... he is just too much fun the way he is right now, today.

Without further ado, here's the whole photo set. Go knock yourself out.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


Friday, April 11, 2008

Liam's turn

Little Miss has been the centre of attention around here lately, but she is not the only one with an April birthday. Liam's birthday is this weekend and if I thought I felt old with my baby turning 1, I really feel old with an almost-3-year-old running around. I still remember (vaguely) not having any kids at all, so to think that 9 months + 3 years has passed since then... it's hard to get over.

Liam, of course, wanted a Spider Man birthday this year. Chad did try a bit to talk him into Diego, but Liam was adamant (and I don't think they have yet licenced the full line of Diego partyware, anyway, so it would be a good theme to keep for future years when that stuff all comes out!) We decided to do a 'friends' party rather than a 'family' party to avoid having our out-of-town families have to come to us two weeks in a row. (In the future, I think we'll do a joint family birthday for both kids, but for Mallory's first I wanted to do, well, Mallory's first.) So we invited a group of our little 3-year-old (and a couple of 4-year-old) friends. And we decided not to do it at our house because we thought we'd have all the touch-up painting done by now (though we don't). I am really looking forward to having a nice little party without any of the hassle of cleaning up both before and after it, not to mention not being stuck in the kitchen making food. I hear the location we're having the party can be a little lackadaisical, but as long as the kids get fed and have fun, I am OK with that.We got started with the celebrations early, by going to Gramma and Grampa's for Liam's birthday dinner last night. Gramma and Grampa picked him up from Cindy's house (I had to take Mallory for her shots; she screamed like a banshee; hijack over.) He was then treated to homemade chicken fingers and fries along with his favourite veggie-and-dip platter, a big chocolate cupcake with candles, and a Diego scooter (and accompanying helmet) wrapped in a Diego gift bag with a Diego card. He was doing well on the scooter indoors, so I can hardly wait for a nice day to get him outside and on the sidewalk, though from the looks of things out the window, it will be the middle of next week before that happens. :(

Thursday, April 10, 2008

12 months

One year ago at this time, I was holding a tiny little hour-old (but two-weeks-late) baby in my arms, and today I am the mother of a little princess (complete with a royal good-bye wave – the action is all in your wrist!) You have come so far in such a short time. I miss my little baby, but I love seeing you grow up into who you are meant to be.

This month you started going to daycare, and it’s been a smooth transition for us all (so far – this is still only week two!) My first week back at work was long and tiring for everybody, but you are settling in at Cindy’s house without any fuss, and we are all breathing a sigh of relief over that. You did, however, have your first major injury at Cindy’s house just a couple of days ago – a fall into the corner of a table that left you with a giant purple bruise on your forehead. Luckily this happened a couple of days after your birthday party, and all the photos of you in your little party dress are not marred by the goose egg!

Now that the weather has finally gotten better, we’ve discovered the outdoorswoman in you. All we need to do is say ‘outside’ and you are headed for the door, and you get impatient when we slow you down in the application of coats and shoes! You love to putter around the driveway with the ride-on toys and balls, and you also love to sit by a corner of the garden and pick: pick at the crocus petals, pick at the mulch, pick at the grass… all these cool new things you were too tiny to remember from last year. As a family we have always enjoyed a lot of outdoor pursuits, and it makes me happy to think of how well you fit in.

This month we finally deciphered your first deliberate word, and – be still my heart! – that word is Mom. Just as Liam has always done, you don’t use Mommy or Mama or any diminutive form, so you’re a one year old sounding like a ten year old… but that’s OK. It’s still the most wonderful thing to hear. You have been indiscriminately saying “dadada” for some time now and I wouldn’t be surprised if Dad becomes your second word – followed by Liam as a third. (For the record, Liam thinks your next word will be “Captain”, but you are not nearly as enamoured of the cat as you are your brother – so I beg to differ.)

You continue to assert yourself more with each passing day. Your latest thing is shaking your head no whenever you’re asked a question. “Do you want some milk?” Your head is shaking, even as you’re reaching out for the cup. “Do you want to go outside?” You’re shaking your head even as you run down the hall toward the door. And I still get a kick out of your drama queen displays. Maybe my mind is playing tricks on me, but I could swear you pull these hissy fits more with your dad now than you do with me. Is it wrong that I find that funny?

Your appetite seems to have completely derailed this month. I know this is what’s supposed to happen, that it should be leveling off along with your growth, but it’s disconcerting to see you sometimes thumb your nose at an entire meal. You are also going through an anti-produce phase, rejecting almost all fruits and vegetables and seemingly subsisting on bread and dairy alone. I can sometimes sneak strawberries into you, though you will then refuse to eat them for Cindy, and she can get you to eat bananas, but you won’t touch those at home… it’s maddening. The best luck I have these days is giving you raisins and dried apricots – something about the lack of moisture in the fruit seems to do the trick.

Tomorrow I take you to see Dr. Bailey again, for your 12-month checkup and shots (ugh!) You got 2 new teeth this month that have been causing you a lot of pain, but that’s nothing that some Tylenol and cuddle time with Mom can’t fix. I worry about you when you toddle around (and as your forehead currently shows – I should!) Even though you now have six weeks of walking under your belt, you seem possessed to keep up with Liam in all his running, jumping, climbing preschooler glory – something that your mind may be ready for, but your body is not!

I still can’t believe that I ever thought I would be the only female in a house full of boys. You are the sweetest little thing I have ever known – I could just dip you in syrup and eat you for breakfast. You are the perfect counterpoint to Liam, giving your dad and me the chance to experience the best of both worlds, and you provide Liam with a friendship that I can tell he already treasures. The way you sing in your crib in the mornings, break out in dance whenever music is playing, clap gleefully when you hear the word “Yay!”, jabber to yourself as you putter around the house and sigh as you drowse off to sleep – these things all melt my heart. I think you are the most beautiful little girl I have ever laid eyes on – I have your photograph tacked up on my bulletin board at work, and I often find myself smiling back as I see you looking down on me. I will never be able to find the words to give justice to how much I love you. I hope to see you have children of your own one day, because only then do I think you will really understand.


Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Party of one (and a request)

So, I already said (I think) I did a terrible job of taking pictures of the people who were actually at Mallory's birthday party. And that fact was then pointed out to me several more times today (i.e. "Nice party pictures, but was there actually anyone there?") So I'm feeling even worse about it than I already did. So my request is, if you were at the party, if you have any pics, please send them along... I would be grateful!!

Now that that plea is out of the way... here are some more cake smash pics. And I swear, none of these were staged - this is entirely Mal in all her sugar-high glory:

Happy birthday to me!

Happy, happy birthday, sweetie girl!! Good thing we got this photo session in before your tumble, hmmm? xoxoxo

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


Last week Cindy called me at work on maybe Tuesday or Wednesday - Mallory had only been there a couple of days. My heart dropped, of course, and in a split second a hundred frightening scenarios went through my head - was one of the kids sick? Hurt? Nope, it just turned out that she was feeding Liam some peanut butter toast for snack and Mallory seemed interested - could she have some, too?

So I didn't instantly panic when Cindy called yesterday right after lunch, though as it turns out, this time I should have. Mallory took a tumble right into a corner of Cindy's coffee table after lunch. This looks bad enough (and the picture doesn't do justice to how swollen it is; Mal's head is severely lopsided!), but Cindy assures me it was much more horrific before she put the ice pack on - in her words - "navy blue".

Good thing the birthday party (and associated portraits) are behind us!!)

Cindy kept Mallory up from her nap for a couple of hours to watch her, but all seems well. Pretty unsightly though!

And, here's some love to the L-man, who hasn't been a topic of conversation that much as of late. He was such a good boy this weekend. I was a bit worried about how he would react to the party being for Mallory, and her having something new to wear, and everything being pink for her, and the presents for her, but... he was so good and kind and understanding. I'm so proud of him.

Monday, April 07, 2008

They're all up now

...and you can find them here.

The aftermath

Yesterday was Mallory's birthday party. *sniff sniff* I held it together well, though there were a few times when I thought I would get all blubbery. There was enough food (there were times when I thought we'd run out - don't ask me why because I'm sure we'll be eating leftovers for another 3 days). There were favours made that I then forgot to hand out (I'll put them in the mail). There was a chance to use the pretty pink and purple serving pieces I bought on clearance at Winner's the week we found out we were having a girl - I knew they would come in handy someday! And there was the discovery that Mallory likes vanilla much more than chocolate - her first cupcake did not go over well, but her second was devoured!

If I thought I was wiped out on Friday after the end of a workweek, that doesn't even compare to how I feel now on Monday morning. A huge huge thank you to Dana and my mom, who cleaned up the whole kitchen when all was said and done and trust me - it was a disaster! If it weren't for them I'm sure the kitchen would still be in the same state now, because we were zonked by the time the party was over. We thought we'd be way early getting to bed last night, but the kids had late naps and were then late to go down, and to top off an already incredibly long day... Mallory's teeth turned into an issue (I felt a new one yesterday I'd never felt before), and after much fuss I got up with her and rocked with her until she felt better. Then I came into work this morning for 7 a.m. so I could shadow one of the volume planners. Can you say, zzzzzzzzz?

I have a whole Flickr set of birthday pics that I will link to when I get them uploaded, but I was just too tired to finish them up last night - hoping to do that later today.

Thursday, April 03, 2008


Mal: "Mum!"
Me: "Did you just call me Mum?"
Mal: "Yep!"

OK, so I don't really think she's talking yet, but... I'm telling you, she's close. Coincidental or not, she often seems to come up with some appropriate-sounding comments at the right time!

Here are a few recent gems from Liam:

(watching me put on a black cami while getting ready for work): "Henry's mom wears that." It took me a while to understand what he was getting at, but I think he means that Aunty Steph wears a lot of black, and me... not so much.

(watching me put on a pair of knee high trouser socks, also getting ready for work):"Gramma Lainey wears that." Uh oh... I'm not sure I like where this is headed!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Party time

Mallory's first birthday party is coming up this weekend. ("I can't believe it's here already!" - yadda, yadda yadda…) In the future, we may decide to do a joint party for both kids, but I wanted Mallory's first birthday to be something girly and special and just for her. (Since their events are split up, Liam is having his first ever 'friends' party next weekend (details on that sure to follow), so he has something to look forward to as well.)

Luckily I have been working on the details of Mallory's party for the last couple of months, because frankly this week has been kind of overwhelming, and if we had to pull it all together at the last minute, I doubt it would amount to anything more than some takeout pizza and a candle stuck into a Twinkie. It is not a big or lavish party by any means, but how can you throw your baby girl her very first birthday party and not get caught up in the fun? For me, the planning of these sorts of things is almost more fun than the event itself, so I have enjoyed spending some naptimes and nights designing an invitation and making some decorations and planning a menu. And unlike Liam, who insisted that Spider Man fulfills his heart's desire, Mallory gave me the chance to dream up whatever I wanted for her event. I know that kind of freedom won't last forever!

Now I just need to figure out what to do for Chad's birthday… did I mention that it's tomorrow? Eeeek!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

The first day of the rest of our lives

This is us as we headed out the door yesterday morning. Yep, we were out the door early enough to stop to take a picture! This picture cracks me up for two reasons. Number one, I guess yesterday was the day that Liam decided to start spontaneously smiling for the camera. He has never willingly done that before - my shots of him smiling are all either (a) candid or (b) obtained by tickle. And number two, I love Mallory's deer-in-the-headlights look here. I never ever ever use flash when I have the choice not to, and yesterday morning it was both ungodly early and pouring rain - no way could I get away without it. I think the poor thing is a little stunned, especially since Chad fired off several shots to make sure we got a keeper.

Yesterday, I did both the daycare drop-off and the pick-up simply because I wanted to. Today is a different story - I am on my own with the kids for three days this week because I have to be. Chad will be able to stop in at home tonight for a bit before heading to his next destination, but he is doing some early morning presentations in the districts, and is spending the night before at each one. I set my alarm for ten minutes earlier this morning and didn't fare too badly, getting into the office around 8:10 (with 8:00 being my 'official' start time). Mallory was actually awake and singing in her crib before my alarm even went off, and she is going to crap out on Cindy this morning for sure, because she was still up and singing to herself long after we put her to bed last night. You'd think her first full day of daycare would have wiped her out; apparently not true.

That's more than this mama can say for herself, because my first day at work did wipe me right out, and then I stayed up later than intended last night to watch much of the Project Runway finale. (I tried to stay away from all the spoilers, since the finale aired in the US several months ago; but the winner was totally sprung on me during a Today Show appearance, and then parodied on Saturday Night Live, so there was really no way, short of living in a cave, to keep myself ignorant.) Tonight will be low-key and early to bed for sure. Really. No, really, I mean it.