Saturday, December 29, 2007

I have created a monster

... and he's pint-sized, with longish blond hair, adorable baby blues and he won't give up his sweats.

When he was even more pint-sized, all Daniel's pants came in those "break-aways" with the convenient snaps for undressing and diaper-changing. As he got bigger, and more mobile I discovered sweatpants. I mean, hey - they come in a rainbow of colors, so they go with just about everything! And they pop on and off in about two seconds when you have to tackle the kid and pin him to the floor to change any clothes.

Now if I try and put him in any "regular" clothes - jeans, cords - we are firmly in Tantrum City. Help!

On the other hand. It's possible I'm just a teensy bit jealous.

Thursday, December 27, 2007


The days of Christmas around here have been sort of a merry melee. Daniel and I were blessed with a cold each (a re-blessing for me, harumph). H worked Christmas eve - day, and then that evening we traveled out to his mother's house to spend some time with her, an auntie, a cousin and another uncle. A crank on his home turf, the change of scenery did Daniel some good. He bopped around the house looking for the trucks that his uncle keeps stashed away for just such an occasion.

We tried to gift H with the opportunity to sleep in on Christmas morn, as the sleeping in thing doesn't happen much these days. Daniel still hasn't quite copped to this whole presents / celebration thing... his reactions were pretty funny at times. What? More presents? For me? Cool!!! I hope H enjoyed the sleeping-in thing because I thoroughly anticipate that Daniel will be into the pre-Christmas buildup next year and that probably won't be happening again!

Another trip to the mother-in-law's house on Christmas Day resulted in a nice meal, twice as many people in her little house, and yep, more presents! (We have doubled our car collection, including a ride-on dump truck, among many other nice things.)

I got a big giggle out of Daniel sitting side-by-side with his three year old cousin Nicholas in their Gram's rocker watching Shrek the Third. Nicholas spilled some water, and his auntie popped off his shirt to haul it off to the dryer. Daniel thought that looked pretty cool, so despite being pretty dry he insisted that his shirt had to come off as well. Two blond shirtless monkeys giggling and watching movies was a cute picture indeed.

We're in cold recovery, and trying to keep H well. And trying to get back on a schedule again.

Reporting in, and wishing you all a Merry Christmas.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Random winter thought of the day...

What in the world is on someone's roof - or coating it - to leave almost the entire building with rusty icicles hanging from the gutters? I suppose to a certain extent it's logical that this could happen, but why don't I recall seeing more of this?

Friday, December 21, 2007

Rolling that stone

I feel like I have started about 18 different posts lately - with none of them landing on the "publish post" side of the coin. Life has just been kicking our respective behinds around here, and it's really starting to bug me. I usually have a much more relaxed season than this has been.

Tooth pain for weeks, a root canal, and car repairs for H. All while working his patootie off out in the cold.

For me: the cough without end, especially while having an MRI done on my liver where the tech is imploring me to hold my breath. The liver problem turned out benign, but the doc herself called me rather than one of the girls in the office to ask: Was I still having gallbladder symptoms? Because the MRI showed my bile duct as bigger than normal, and even absent the gallbladder there could be some debris in there which might require a procedure to remove.

Can we please stop finding things wrong with me any time now?

And I spent most of the day yesterday with my heart in my throat after Daniel took a skate in his socks across some linoleum at the favorite playspace and whacked the back of his head a good one. He was so stunned, he didn't even cry. And it is very unusual for him to clutch at me that way when I scoop him up... I think my heart rate has finally returned to normal as of Saturday morning.

Looking forward to a calm, stress-free Christmas.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Winter Denial

For someone who has lived in Michigan, frequented the wilds of Wisconsin and now resides in New England I had a healthy dose of winter denial going up until recently. The SAHM gig pretty much allowed me to miss the extended commute/gridlock many folks in this area suffered a few days ago.

Staying indoors with a 2+ year old has led to me contemplating removing every stick of furniture from his room and replacing them with one of these, however. He could sleep on one of these, couldn't he?

Do they make kiddie treadmills? (Holy cow! They do!)

Add to this - Mama dragging her heels about buying the little guy boots for the season. Last time he grew out of the darn things before we had any sort of weather! The shelves were bare at Target yesterday, and we got hit with at least 6 inches of the white stuff today. On the to-do list: 1) Find a new spot to buy boots. 2) Figure out how to velcro the mittens so that they actual stay ON his hands for more than 0.2 seconds, so that 3) we can spend some time outdoors to burn off the daily ENERGIZER TODDLER energy buildup that happens around here.

Monday, December 10, 2007


E and I are longtime friends. We've known each other since high school, and through tons of moving around and "life events." She encouraged me to move to New England when I was unhappy on the West Coast, and conversely now that I am pretty firmly rooted here she is now on that other coast herself.

One of the many things E introduced me to while we were roomies is the live music/folk music scene in this area. There are fantastic small venues where one can go to hear - really hear - some wonderful performers. You can check out my sidebar for a collection of favorites. I also wanted to take this opportunity to share a video from Anne Heaton and Rose Polenzani. Beautiful voices - and how can you beat a pink ukulele?

Friday, December 07, 2007


Ugh. It's back. Getting a cough is like welcoming in an entity with a life of it's own, wrapping tentacles around me and refusing to let go.

I was a preemie, and my Mom has always said that my lungs must be my weak point. I have some pretty strong memories of her staying up with me while I coughed and hacked through the night. There were homemade cough concoctions/remedies often involving honey, and sometimes brandy. There was at least one episode of pneumonia when I was younger.

I have vivid and occasionally embarrassing memories of having to leave college classrooms because of the disruption my cough was making, and also of having to wave away at least one well-meaning onlooker who wondered if I needed the Heimlich maneuver or something.

Not to mention that after days/weeks of doing this, it just starts to hurt.

Have I mentioned that cough medicine doesn't do diddly-squat for me?

I had a bout of this during my second trimester and that was rough. You're pretty much allowed to take Robitussin, which might as well be sugar-water for me.

The funny thing is. When I get a cough now, Daniel can sleep right through it. It must have been all that coughing he heard in utero...

Monday, December 03, 2007

DefCon 1

Otherwise known as: Towering Temper Tantrums Batman! What happened to my sweet kid and how do I get him back/where's the reset button???

Actually I feel a little guilty typing this as he has been pretty calm today, and it has been a snow day to boot. In the past when there were squabbles about something-or-other it was always sort of: Ha, ha - how cute. How about this instead? And he would be distracted by whatever new thing you just handed him and move on.

In the past week this has turned into objections to many of the things he usually eats, emphatic objections to the new shoes Mama bought even though they are simply a larger version of a previous make/model, and a tantrum over the toy swap at our favorite playspace. The toy swap tantrum resulted in my dragging him back outside to scream rather than disrupting the playspace before he was allowed back in.

Oh, and one evening was spent coloring while screaming quite loudly: MY Cray-ons! Which I might have understood if I had been trying to do some dastardly deed like take them away. But I wasn't...

It was a little gratifying to hear from my friend Pamela that her youngest, roughly six months older than Daniel, has been doing the same thing... and that the oldest had a similar stage. I was starting to wonder if it was me!

Daniel's laser-focus on what he wants is a quality that I am going to think is pretty wonderful - when he's 18 and off to college.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

When good relationships go bad...

It is nice to develop a "relationship" with the collection of doctors, dentists, etc. who touch your life. Even if it is somewhat illusory - as a professional, they probably see tons of patients - you are still part of those tons. And you get to see the same face, when you are often ill, in pain, or at some sort of vulnerable point.

What do you do when those relationships aren't quite going the way you'd hoped? If it is near the beginning, like when I was interviewing an OB for example, it can be pretty easy to just say Yeesh, no way and move on. But what if it's further along in the process? I've documented a bit of my battle with my gastroenterologist. I'm still more than a little peeved that it took a year and a half of my life (and nearly all of Daniel's) to diagnose and treat gallstones. Yet more testing is to follow to confirm whatever they think is going on with my liver. I'm being told it's benign, but we're still looking...

H has been going through his own version of this lately with a toothache. Our whole family followed our dentist to his own practice. Awhile back, my sister-in-law had a bunch of work done and suddenly came down with tooth pain of undetermined origin. It lasted a month, and eventually faded. H has had several appointments recently. First diagnosis: gum inflammation. Second appointment resulted in a prescription for antibiotics, and a potential upcoming root canal.

It's miserable. As anyone who has had serious tooth pain will tell you, it colors everything that you do. At what point do you say Enough. This isn't working. And move on?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Stop the Insanity!

We watch TV at our house. Courtesy of the local library, Uncle B and a variety of sources we have seen a spike in available DVDs. The toddler prince of the DmF household has suddenly sparked to the idea that Hey! These sparkly disc-things give me control over what's on the TV!

Mama is trying to figure out how to not have to watch the trash truck video for the eight bajillionth time.

When my family arrived for Thanksgiving, TV football arrived with them. After about the third day, Daniel was getting antsy at having no TV control. When he was finally told that we could put one of his shows in he very purposefully walked around the kitchen table to tell Uncle A - No. As in: It's not your turn anymore buddy! We all roared. I've said it before. The kid knows what he wants.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

It's a good thing...

Back from a mini-blogging break... This was the very first time I cooked for Thanksgiving. I'm thankful my turkey went off without a hitch! And also thankful for a Mom and Dad and brother who made the trek out to New England from the wilds of Wisconsin and Michigan to help make this a fun time for H and Daniel and I.

There was lots of eating, lots of football on the television... as an experiment I tried these thin mints from a Kraft recipe. Very yummy! Daniel was in heaven with all the attention and company... and the case of 30-year-old matchbox cars that his uncle brought with him.

I feel the miles between my family and I rather keenly at moments like these. But I am so thankful for visits like this just the same. Wishing you all a belated Happy Thanksgiving, and a glorious start to the Christmas Season!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Toddler Whiplash is Brutal

I occasionally have to remind myself that this little person I am parenting is just that - a little person, who is perfectly capable of getting up on the wrong side of the bed some mornings.

We had a nice visit to the favorite playspace on Thursday morning. Daniel had a chance to tear around the place and I got a chance to chat with a Mom I am getting to know. We were both trying to maneuver our kids into leaving around the same time when Daniel suddenly popped up with, "Marissa hold hand! Marissa hold hand!" She thought that idea was pretty cool, and since Daniel had his Mama's hand, she had to have her Mama's hand as well. All linked up the four of us trooped to our respective cars, which was pretty cute.

Flash forward to Friday morning, and we met up with Marissa and her Mom at the local library and Daniel was in a bit of an, um, mood. Not with Marissa, he thought playing with her was great. If he lost her in the crowd of kids in the library on this cold November day he would wind up twisting this way and that saying, "Mrissa? Mrissa?" The mood was reserved for anytime Mama wanted to corral him a bit, or even just a general sit-on-the-floor-for-a-few-sobs or angry kicks. I'm not sure if it was over-stimulation due to the volume of kids around? And he and Marissa chasing each other giggling around the stacks in the young-adult section seemed to be a favorite activity. Maybe we should have tried to find a baby gym instead... and now I'm actually wondering if I should show my face around the library anytime soon...

Ah, toddler mood-swings. From everything I've read, it's just all about being a two-year old. Even the part about reserving the temper for Mama. I guess they do it, just because they can. They know that Mama isn't going to go away. It doesn't make it any easier on my patience, though.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The best laid plans... and all that

I've been craving some "get together with friends" time lately. With kids, without kids, it almost doesn't matter. It feels like a need to be sure and use these "nice" days to their fullest extent before the weather forces us all indoors on a more permanent basis. I guess I tend to hibernate during the winter months.

It just hasn't been happening, which is frustrating. My sister-in-law with the 3 year old, the closest cousin to Daniel's age, and I have been trying to get together for weeks. A busted water heater, various work schedules, and a dead car have thrown themselves across our respective paths. Pamela and I have been been dealing with similar items - that dratted water heater, a cracked car windshield, braces, various illnesses, work commitments, family commitments.... Despite all this, I signed us (I thought) up for the November 12th showing of Battlestar Galactica Razor at a local theater.

Turns out the organizers, in their infinite wisdom had deemed it one signup per email address. A fact which had escaped me. Especially as I was busy trying to track down a confirmation email that I never received. I mean really. It occasionally happens, but how many people go to the movies solo? It should have been two "tickets" per signup... My inner Type A/Event Organizer was rebelling at how this whole thing was put together. Especially against all the gaming commercials at the beginning of each reel of the movie. At one point I was wondering if the projectionist had pushed the wrong button, and we were back at the beginning, but I digress...

Pamela, still not feeling well, excused herself insisting that I stay to watch the show. So again... no get together with a good friend who I haven't seen in awhile. Sigh.

On the plus side: for Battlestar Galactica fans out there, I can recommend the movie premiering on the SciFi Channel on November 24th. They have done an excellent job weaving the backstory of the Pegasus through with events and characters that we already know. There is solid acting by all involved, gripping action scenes, and I am always impressed when writers pay such attention to detail.

I, in the meantime, will be back to trying to connect face to face with the friends in my life.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Our favorite family playspace has a wonderful selection of playgroups, parent classes and parent/child activities. They run in 8 week sessions, break for just some "drop in" time and start the next 8 week session.

Demand can be high for some activities, so they usually ask that you rotate out. This usually puts me in a bit of a quandary, as Daniel's favorite is just to jump into a playgroup. The playgroups are loosely structured - they usually plan some sort of craft or sensory activity (boy did he love digging in the rice and beans!), but kids are free to do whatever they like in the play area.

Alternatively there are more structured classes involving music or motion, or kids in the kitchen, or art. We tried a motion class, and Daniel was the kid "ping-ponging" around the room pretty much ignoring any directions and doing what he felt like. I'm torn about what to try next... While I think it's good for him to be exposed to classes with more structure, I would catch him looking longingly at the door to the playspace while we were in the other class. I cherish that independent spirit in my little boy who knows what he wants.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Larks, Owls, and Toddlers with Messy Schedules... Oh My!

Years ago I was a night owl. I dropped naps at the first possible opportunity, stayed up to all hours (often for the express purpose of reading in bed at night) and yet got up for school the next day. I just seemed to need very little sleep. What I wouldn't give for that "Superpower" back!

Somewhere along the line I turned into a lark. Even before having Daniel, I started peeling myself out of bed earlier to beat the morning traffic in to work. The habit continued and my mornings are now a bit of quiet time before having to chase a toddler around.

H has a different conundrum. He is, and will probably always be a night owl. Unfortunately his job dictates otherwise as it is necessary to get up pretty early. This results in surviving on not enough sleep, and the two of us "passing in the night." I'm still not sure of a solution...

The first few years of his life Daniel hardly noticed the Daylight Savings Time changes. This past Sunday threw him off a bit, however. We were up earlier, crankier sooner before his nap... And the drive home from his Gram's house at 5:15pm in the pitch dark really had him wondering. He sat in his car seat and kept calling from the back for "Blankie? Blankie!"

I think things have finally smoothed over...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

The Calm before The Storm

A great big thank you to the person who parked next to me at CVS yesterday - darn near diagonally in their parking space - thereby encouraging some interesting acrobatics to get my two year old back into his car seat.

During this feat of gymnastics I happened to note the presence of at least one kid's car seat in said car... I can only hope that the van belonged to the woman in the store who was busily pushing the double stroller through the too-small aisles. She looked like she had her hands full, and that's the only way I can mentally cut her some slack at this point...

We are water-heater operational again, and I am composing my complaint letter to Sears next. More on that as I have more news to tell... The jury/trial that H landed on is still going on, much to our dismay as this is getting pretty inconvenient. Flu shots today for baby and I - H is next. Otherwise we are just hunkering down to outlast the remnants of Storm Noel.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Snot (a) Post

I haven't been able to pinpoint exactly when it happened, but Daniel has become aware of when his nose is full. This elicits much sympathy from Mama when he has a cold and is just feeling generally miserable.

Not so much when it is tantrum time and he proceeds to scream and cry himself snotty. He stops. He gets an odd look on his face, and swipes at it in a pique of fury yelling nose, Nose, NOSE!!!

Any tips on teaching a two year old how to blow his nose?

He also charmed the pants off me yesterday when during a diaper change he proceeded to start naming off body parts - not his own, but mine. Pats my arm - Mama arm. Reaches up - Mama eye. Makes hand motions until I lean closer, then pats my forehead - Mama bangs.

I almost fell over howling with laughter. Maybe it comes from us being all talk and no action about cutting his hair? We're always saying, Come here honey. Just let me cut your bangs a little bit...

Monday, October 29, 2007

Seven Years Ago...

I married my quiet man...

Relationships up to the point H and I had met had been sort of soul-crunchers, and I had been staying far, far away since my move to Boston. Rationalizations popped up, of course. I was busy, I was adjusting to my new life on the East Coast, new friends, a small bit of schooling, new job(s)... H stepped into this busy quagmire one January.

We met on a blisteringly cold evening for drinks at The Top of the Hub, and talked into the night. Rather than face a train ride home on the T, I let him drive me home. Smiles, much talk, a Hey, we should do this again... and quietly, almost imperceptibly our lives started to entwine.

He asked for my hand while we walked, or offered me his arm. Often. Books, movies, any old topic of conversation. I introduced him to local live music like Jim's Big Ego, and he picked me up at 4am one morning so that we could drive to Lexington for the Patriot's Day festivities that begin at dawn. We shared our love of travel and history and old New England cemeteries. And one cold December evening he took me on a carriage ride and proposed... It was the same year that we lost my Grandfather to a brain tumor, and we both flew to Wisconsin to share our news and attend the funeral. It was the makings of a bittersweet weekend.

Planning was a whirlwind, as we had a little less than a year. It was a wonderful celebration with 100 friends and family, packed into an old New England church's pew boxes and an old New England home for food and dancing. I panicked only when I discovered that "Our Sunday" coincided with the Fall daylight savings time that year. (Although, I suppose that would have meant people would be an hour early, not an hour late...). We still laugh that facing each other at the front of the church, we each grabbed the wrong hand when it came time for the rings...

It is seven years (and one child) later. I love taking his hand, spooning into his back at night... I am barely awake many mornings when he leaves before first light. It is a safe cocoon when he settles the comforter more securely over me before he leaves.

Seven years of a quiet whirlwind that blew into my life. I wouldn't trade it for anything. Happy Anniversary H!

Thursday, October 25, 2007


Water heater busted yesterday, which equals water all over the garage, hallway to the garage, and seepage into the neighbor's garage.

First contractor - HUGELY expensive. Second contractor - NEVER calls back. Purchase new heater from big-name store - ROYAL runaround about getting out here to install the @!&$*^ thing.

Say hello to Mom with the proverbial steam coming out of her ears, which yes, is the only hot water you will find around this place.

Oh, and H went for jury duty today and yep, they picked him. Out until at least Tuesday. Hope he wasn't looking for a hot shower to go to court.

Monday, October 22, 2007


Just a few odds and ends... It is supposed to hit 80 degrees today. Eighty! It's October 22nd! I can handle this kind of Fall.

Sense memories... of all kinds. Think of the name you can't stand, and suddenly remember that a kid with that name bullied you in grade school. I look back at yearbooks now and realize that that imposing figure was a third-grader. A black and white photograph that H took when we visited Quebec years ago - the starkness of it reminding me that we were freezing our hineys off. I think it was the weekend of Canadian Thanksgiving, and it was cold! The smell of burning wood takes me to 4th of July bonfires in our backyards in Michigan. Ditto for the sugary scent of marshmallows, ripe for the toasting.

Anytime I pass by The Food Network and happen upon the program Unwrapped, I always get sucked in... there is something fascinating about the behind the scenes of how things get made. A recent episode dealt with some Halloween candy, and I loved learning about Smarties. Smarties remind me of my Grandma B. She always had them in her purse. Probably great for keeping kids like me quiet in church, as I would sit and eat one tiny little sugary bit at a time.

What items/experiences send you down memory lane?

Friday, October 19, 2007


My + banana = MyNana!

It is sometimes amazing to me that this kid was being targeted by his pediatrician at his 18-month appointment as a possible candidate for needing some "Early Intervention." I worried. I even made an appointment, and like flipping a switch he suddenly decided that it was time to talk and he hasn't stopped since.

He's been explaining his favorite programs to me, and chattered his way all around the farm today with his father and I. Pigs! Horseys! Chickens! and most especially Tractor!

A favorite topic of conversation ever since the jaunt to The House of Chuck E. has been the doggie with the guitar that was up on stage with the band. Our local playgroup recently held a toy/clothing swap and Daniel glommed onto a toy guitar that spouts rockabilly music when you hit the keys on the neck in place of strings. There was no way I was getting out of there without that guitar. The mouse fallout continues...

Monday, October 15, 2007

So that explains it...

Connoisseur of chocolate, chocoholic, choco-maniac take your pick and that's me. In the same way that I used to wrinkle my nose with distaste and accuse my Mother of hiding celery in dinner recipes the reverse is true if I think chocolate is in the house. I'm a veritable bloodhound for that last piece of Halloween candy, or the bag of chocolate chips hiding in the back of the pantry if there's a pinch. The local ice cream shop during my college years at MSU was a place called Melting Moments, and I was in heaven with a scoop of their "turbo chocolate."

If there's a selection on hand, H and I are perfectly matched as I will nab the dark chocolate every time and toss him the Hershey's... No selection on hand, doesn't mean I'm picky! I'm sure I don't need to go into what a certain time of the month does to my chocolate consumption either.

I was intrigued to read this article about a scientific study where they think they have linked a craving for chocolate to the type of bacteria living in a person's digestive tract. I was also amused to read:

In fact, the study was delayed because it took a year for the researchers to find 11 men who don't eat chocolate.

I wonder if they looked for any women to participate in this study??

Friday, October 12, 2007

Ack! There's a Mouse in My House!

We were invited to our first Chuck E. Cheese birthday party. Daniel was over the moon yesterday! I had recollections of ol' Chuck from when I was a kid, but hadn't considered him for the two-year-old crowd. Boy was I wrong.

There were video games that were more suited to the older kids, but there was also a climbing structure and arcade games of all kinds. Daniel was drawn to the barnyard ones that had eggs rolling down a chute, and if you dumped the bucket just right you scored points. Another had ping pong ball "bees" that you caught in a net and dumped into the honeypot and you earned points for how many... all of these arcade games earned you tickets that could be cashed in for prizes at the end. There were kiddie rides of every stripe, Bob the Builder and the Teletubbies among others. I almost didn't need the pocketful of tokens because by the time I started something up Daniel was noticing some other ride or doo-dad and he was off and running again.

The tables for pizza and cake sat near the stage that had an animatronic Chuck and his cohorts up there playing instruments and singing. This fascinated Daniel to no end, and even when I dragged him out of there he was chattering about "Doggie guitar" and "Song!"

The festivities ran through nap time though, which led to an overtired and somewhat cranky toddler. He was struggling to keep his eyes open and pretty much zonked on his father's shoulder in time for bed. By that time I was wishing for open space on the other shoulder as it was a day of Mama running to keep up.

As we were getting ready to go out this morning, I had to convince Daniel that no, we weren't going to see Chuck E. today... Uh oh.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Mommy Biology

I was commenting to someone just the other day that if I were in charge of little things like oh, say human biology, I would give mothers a little bonus. We all know the changes that come with pregnancy, the whacko hormones and so forth. I think Moms should be gifted with an extra set of adrenal glands that kick into action once the kid arrives. This ensures that we can actually keep up with the little buggers. And I only have one!

It no longer surprises me when there are rather long stretches of time between hearing from my friend Kim. She has five.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Festival O' Fun

Both of my sister-in-laws sing with bands, and this afternoon one of them was playing at a local festival. You know the type: blow up bouncers and slides for the kiddos, a couple of carts with hot dogs and hamburgers, fried dough and ice cream. Earlier in the day there were a lot of vendors selling crafts and other things. The evening was pretty much devoted to the music, and later some fireworks.

I was amazed. I think it was one of the first times that we have gotten Daniel in front of live music like that. We all know he loves his country music videos, but to see him get down and boogie to the live music was fun. He and his cousin Nicholas chased each other around in front of the band, squealing and laughing and joined by other random kids from time to time.

Daniel did have one casualty of the evening. I took my eyes off him for two seconds, and a bigger kid not watching where he was going pretty much flattened him/knocked him off his feet. The Mom swooped in right away, but instead of even offering up an, "I'm sorry" she just scooped up her kid and exited. It makes me a bit angry. I know it wasn't intentional, but my kid had the breath knocked out of him - it took him a minute to gather up enough air to even start screaming - and he now looks like he has a bit of road rash down one side of his face.

We got everything calmed down, and Daniel went back to the music. I would occasionally try to stop him and get him to drink some water... I even tried to steer him over toward the kiddie bouncers at one point thinking he might need a break. This just earned me a wail of, "Dancing!"

I finally made a decision to head for home, and was preparing for a fight to get to the car. When I paused because a song I liked had just started, Daniel looked at me and said, "Go Home!" He's nothing if not a kid who knows what he wants.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Laundry Misdeeds

Holy cow did today start with a misstep... We have a blankie in the house. I've been fortunate that Daniel doesn't seem to cart it everywhere - it's made thousands of miles of trips to Grandma and Grandpa's house, and even to the doctor's office a few times when I thought comfort might be exceptionally needed. But usually it is just a fixture in the house: a good cuddler on the couch, and a must at bedtime. Needless to say, blankie gets a tad, um, ripe at times. The best plan of attack is to launch it straight into the laundry as soon as he gets up. Then I am pretty much guaranteed to have the thing dry by nap time.

Little did I know. I executed Plan B: Wash Blankie when Daniel's second favorite morning show came on the air. Super Why is a new PBS show that is also very letters and reading oriented, and Daniel is fascinated with it at the moment. The show began, and durn it all he started hunting for the blankie. It was a slippery slope after that... nothing I could do was quite right. (I'll cry 'til you pick me up. No, wait, pick me up and I'll cry harder!)

I finally cut the tumble dry short, yanked blankie from the dryer, and handed it to him slightly damp. And lo, peace did reign on the house of Dirt Makes Fat. For the moment...

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Personality Plus

Maybe it's because of the stay at home mom gig, but sometimes I am totally knocked sideways by the changes in my little guy. I am so close every day that they sort of sneak up on me. You take this tiny baby home from the hospital, and just love them to bits but let's face it. As one of my friends said to me: It's pretty much eat, sleep, diaper, repeat.

There is the first smile, first word, first steps... and somewhere along the line this whole personality pops out and this realization hits of a "real boy" in there. I had Daniel out and about in the car and running errands with me a few days ago. My head was down in the front seat as I rummaged around in my bag looking for something. I heard a giggle and looked in the back to discover Daniel wearing the Country Weekly music magazine he had been paging through previously as a hat. I could just tell by the sly grin that he must've been doing that for a little bit, and finally giggled to get my attention (and because he couldn't hold it in any longer.) The grin got even wider as I nearly fell over in my seat from laughter...

This is a kid who was so focused on seeing the tractor at the farm yesterday that I was literally running to keep up with him. And a kid who was so excited at the prospect of picking out a punkin' that I felt badly about steering him away from the super-humongous-ginormous pumpkins because we don't have the room.

I worry sometimes that in all the "dailiness" of "being a Mom" and being the caretaker that I lose sight of some of those "joy in the pumpkins" moments. And I pray that I never squash such impulses in him, and just enjoy my little boy with the plus-sized personality.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

That's One Way to Stay Awake

It always amazes me to hear the various stories of kids and their "sleeping styles." Quantity, timing, location... all vary from kid to kid and even in the same kid from time to time. Just to keep us parents on our collective toes...

I was apparently one of those lovely children who didn't need much sleep. At all. Once my little brother came along my Mother had to enforce "quiet time" to try and get me to play or read quietly or something. My brother was on the opposite end of this spectrum and would sleep anytime, and almost anywhere. We have photos of him sleeping in the middle of someone's kitchen counter, and home movies of him ka-zonked in his highchair. A moving vehicle was the fastest way to put him out, and I think Mom worried a bit about putting him on the school bus.

Daniel's doing pretty well with the nighttime sleeping, but I am starting to suspect that we are phasing out the naps. He must still need them because he drops off pretty quickly, but one catnap of an hour or less and he's raring to go (usually... he blessed us with a 2.5 hour nap a few days ago).

Longer car trips can get a bit trickier: put a cozy car, with some of our windier back roads and the rhythm starts him nodding off. And that little bit of extra sleep can make bedtime a lot more interesting. H stumbled across a way to keep the little guy hopping recently. (Well it will work until the temperature drops dangerously...). Roll down the window on some curvy roads, and let the breeze blow through those blond curls! Daniel gets this elated look on his face, and we all laugh the last half of the trip home with the little voice from the backseat squealing: Do 'gen! Hair blo'!

Friday, September 28, 2007

It must be the full moon...

It's Jekyll and Hyde day so far here at the DmF house.

Yesterday H and I were having one of those conversations, just going over the day. I casually mentioned to him that I thought I might take Daniel to drop-in playgroup on Friday morning, and do a grocery run in the afternoon.

Daniel has started dawdling on the steps as we try to leave the house. We have two sets of stairs to get to the garage, all of which he usually wants to do himself. This involves lots of sitting and standing holding Mama's hand, as well as getting to touch every thing/texture within reach. I'm trying to remember to leave the house with plenty of lead time so that my patience doesn't wear too thin. Today as I was trying to coax him a bit: Don't you want to go to playgroup? He looked up at me all blond curls and big blue eyes and said: Groceries? Holy Cow I forget what little sponges a two year old can be! I wasn't even talking to him about this yesterday.

Baby Hyde came out to play at the playgroup just a bit later. I usually get complimented on my little angel-face, so it was a bit disconcerting to have him screeching at every turn and about nearly every thing. I'm hoping to nap the bad mood out of him, or the grocery trip this afternoon is going to get interesting.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


One of Daniel's newest favorite shows is "Word World." I like it too, as it is very letters and literacy-based. Letters make up the characters and pieces of "Word World". It is hard to see in this picture, but Ant is made up of the letters A N T. It's much easier to see the B A R N.

Just a small digression here: I have been doing the single-parent thing since Saturday, and so I'm a bit bleary. I love my kid to pieces, but sunup to sundown for this many days without a break is a wee bit taxing.

Anyhow, I stumbled into the kitchen this evening to start dinner, and found on the refrigerator in magnets: A N T. I suppose I'm going to have to reserve judgement, as Daniel wouldn't replicate it... he's a very focused kid, and this afternoon the focus has been on how to get Mama to knock her head against the wall (and for how many times and how hard). But... coincidence? Sheesh! Do I start saving for MIT now??

Sunday, September 23, 2007


There is very little that seems to scare Daniel, for which I am grateful. A few days ago we went to visit my mother-in-law and found this guy on the living room coffee table, courtesy of Uncle B. Daniel was nervous enough that we wound up putting him behind the couch and throwing a blanket over him. I thought we were home free, but last night just after midnight I heard a wail from the baby's room. When I went in he shakily said to me, "The Man!" This is the only thing I can think of, and I feel so awful about it! Hopefully it is a one-time incident and we can put it behind us. I may have to be more careful about the Halloween stuff coming up though.

In scare-Mama news I woke up this morning, and when I turned to go back into the bedroom there was another one of those heebie-jeebie spiders dangling from the doorway poised to land on my head. I managed to refrain from screaming and swept it down with a broom and out the back door.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


A big thank you to the guys who started mowing the lawn around our complex yesterday at 7:45 ayem thereby ensuring that the toddler won't sleep in.

I poked my head in the door and he popped up like a jackrabbit saying, "Noise! Cut grass!"
I love Fall in New England. There is a crispness to the air, pumpkins, apple picking, Fall colors. H and I even married in October. While it was tempting to try a costume wedding, we went for Fall splendor in an old church complete with pew boxes and a reception at an old New England home in the area.

I'm facing the coming winter with a bit of trepidation, however. Daniel is a bit of a bear if I don't get him out somewhere each day to burn off a bit of the toddler energy. H is of the "just bundle 'em up and get 'em out" strategy. Personally I find that harder to do the colder it gets, but then I'm a bit wimpy when it comes to the wind chill. Any ideas what to do in the wintertime other than replacing the living room furniture with a jungle gym and climbing wall? I'm trying to get prepared here.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Sick, Sick, Sick

Best not get too close! Some enterprising little bug has not only waylaid the little guy, but me as well. Perhaps a little present from our trips to playgroup last week?

It certainly could be worse, but it's enough to give everyone the crankies and not sleep well. Even though he got up sort of miserable last night, Daniel did me a favor and slept a bit more this morning. Which was a good thing because my head was pounding so hard in the early am that I thought my eyeballs were going to roll out of their sockets and across the floor.

H is ducking and running for cover as the only well member of the family. Even sick, I wish I had Daniel's energy. And I still haven't figured out this whole Mom/sick thing... taking care of business when all I want to do is pull the covers over my head. I hope to return you to our regularly scheduled blogging very soon.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Kick-Butt Mama

One of my favorite shows has always been Alias. I don't own the DVDs, but I can imagine myself watching and re-watching Jennifer Garner as kick-ass agent Sydney Bristow.

Out of the celeb Moms that are out there/in the news, Jennifer has always seemed the most down-to-earth. Married to Ben Affleck and Mom to Violet, the main paparazzi shots that I've seen are of them out in the park, at the grocery store... just being a family. I find that refreshing.

It looks like she is returning to the action scene in a new movie opening September 28th and starring with Chris Cooper and Jamie Foxx. The Kingdom: A team of U.S. investigators set out to find the perpetrators behind a deadly attack in a Middle Eastern country.

And it appears Alias co-star / hottie Michael Vartan also has a new show premiering this fall.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Playgroup a Go-Go

Sigh. I don't know what it is. Sometimes I think I must have lost my Mom's Club ID. I mean, I've got the kid and everything, but I was sent home from the hospital without the secret handshake or something. Why is it so hard to meet other Moms?

I've gone from a job I had for nearly 10 years of my life, to the life of a SAHM in The Kingdom of the Toddler. It's a life that has its joys, don't get me wrong. But I KNOW there are other people living here, and I'll be darned if I can find them some days.

We've been bouncing between two playgroups. Playgroup A: smaller, great leaders, am finally starting to feel recognized, like I belong and likewise for Daniel. We are recognizing in turn other Moms and kids, conversations are starting to feel more natural... things are just sort of progressing nicely where I can feel some relationships starting to widen and expand a little. It feels good. Since they have been between sessions, they are operating on "drop-in" time - which means plenty of opportunities to visit. We are about to swing into a regular session, which will limit available time outside of your "scheduled" playgroup.

We keep trying Playgroup B: larger space, more kids of a wider age range, loads of stuff to do. The most I can seem to bring myself to say is: The leader is nice. Daniel had fun. And I always leave there mildly discouraged. For such a larger group, you'd think there would be at least a Mom or two a bit more welcoming. Instead I feel in sort of a clique-y junior high, where Moms are in various states of watching and not watching their kids. This includes the charmer who was taking big mouthfuls of the rice that was in the sensory table for the kids to play in, while Mom was busy chatting about her shopping elsewhere.

H thinks I need to cut my losses and start looking elsewhere. I think I agree, but this is hard.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Mom Escape #137

Anyone who knows me knows by now that I LOVE all things science fiction and fantasy: movies, TV, books, you name it. (And just check out some of the selections in my sidebar...) I've even been known to watch some pretty awful stuff just to get that fix. Of course this sometimes results in my wishing for that hour/two hours/other random segment of my life back once I'm through. (Or looking back at some of the stuff I watched in the 70s and 80s and wondering What was I thinking?) But that can't deter me... All this was true pre-Daniel and continues even now.

The BBC has gotten on the bandwagon, and the newest entry at BBC America is Torchwood. A spin-off from Dr. Who, this series follows a team of people in Cardiff, Wales investigating alien and human crime sometimes using borrowed alien technology. I caught the first episode this past week. There is a bit of an X-Files-ish air to it, and I think it has possibilities. Stay tuned...

I highly recommend an escape into some mind-bending/worlds colliding/otherworldly stuff if your days are filled with diapers and wipes and (shudder) Barney.

(And in other geek moments: Did you hear the title of the new Indiana Jones movie? It's Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.)

Monday, September 10, 2007

Excuse Me?

Yet again, a call from my gastroenterologist's office regarding the liver bumps. The good doctor finally had a chance to go over my CT scan over the weekend. The message said that yes, it appears to be a hemangioma, they have blood vessel(s), can resemble a bruise, are benign, etc. (Yay, me!)

But... (you knew this was coming, right?)

The doctor wants to schedule an MRI in November to get another look at them. Is it just me, or is this starting to seem like testing just for testings sake?

Excuse me while I go shake down my doctor and find out just what is going on here.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Snips and Snails

There is a debate going on here at the DmF household. And I am firmly on either side of the fence depending on which day you talk to me...

Daniel turned two years old last month, and except for a mini bang-snip here and there so that he could see, he has yet to have a haircut. I get more and more (especially from the grandmas at the grocery store): Oh, what a pretty little girl. Or parents on the playground watch their kids interact with Daniel and I hear them use the pronoun "she." I was all set to charge right over to the local kid-cuts place when today no less than three people complimented me on his blond curls.

Anyone have any experiences/war stories they'd like to share about their kid's first haircut? We still have rolling/screaming/wrestling matches over the daily tooth-brushing and occasional fingernail/toenail clipping. So the idea of getting anywhere near him with a pair of scissors is somewhat intimidating.

Of course, I may also be just holding onto this last little bit of his official "babyhood."

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Too Cute

Mommy: "AAh CHOO!!"

(from the kitchen table): "Bess You!"


From the Is It a Universal Kid Thing? Files:

Daniel has drunk from a cup with a straw ever since he gave up the boob au naturale and the very short-lived bottle. He has suddenly discovered blowing bubbles with his straws.

A new wrinkle: If you blow bubbles in one of those drink pouches like Capri Sun, and then stop, there is a fun fountain that results.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Dirt Makes Fat Maxim

Be careful the amount of smugness you exhibit when you remember the stroller for the two year old, whose legs you are certain will conk out while you are visiting down on the farm. This is in direct proportion to the number of times and speed with which the two year old will run away from you while you juggle the stroller and diaper bag - which is much faster than you anticipated.

Friday, August 31, 2007


As long as I am on a roll:

I was blog-surfing recently and read a funny post about Dunkin' Donuts having it out for the author... I'll be darned if I can remember where I saw it, and I'll be back to link to it if I can figure it out. If it's you, drop me a note and/or just know that you tickled my funny bone. We've been visiting DD on a regular basis this summer as the two year old has developed a real yen for their smoothies or "hobies" (?) as he calls them. Our order is nearly always the same, only the price constantly changes. Can't figure that one out... But with an antsy kid in the backseat I'm not gonna argue too loudly, particularly when it's in our favor. What I find particularly irritating however is the fact that I place my order over the "squawk box" only to reach the window and have the person ringing me up say: Now what did you have? Why do I bother? And there is always at least one thing not right. Today's order was: a small tropical smoothie, small iced tea with sugar and lemon, a glazed donut and six munchkins (2 plain, 2 glazed, 2 sugar). What I got was the smoothie, the tea minus the sugar, a powdered sugar donut and 4 munchkins. Go figure.


I am, shall we say, a bit lax on the issue of the two year old and TV. The whole "No TV Before Two Years Old" movement is great in theory, but it just didn't work out that way around our house. And part of my whole "Dirt Makes Fat" philosophy is all about ditching the Mommy guilt, because goodness knows I certainly don't need any more.

I do, however, try to keep an eye on what is on TV. Nothing too violent or racy, and our lack of stereo equipment sometimes means that we have the country videos on in the background for a little music around the house. Daniel and Trace Adkins, Gretchen Wilson, Rodney Atkins and others are really becoming best buds.

There should be the same restrictions on commercials as there are on TV shows, though. We will have something pretty innocuous on the tube and suddenly there is a commercial for Halloween or The Ring II or some such movie on... and the commercials are just as bad as the flicks. They have their place, but I shouldn't have to go diving for the remote to keep these images away from my kid.

That's all I'm saying.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

All the King's Men

In many ways I feel as though I shouldn't be complaining. There are so many who have far more serious issues surrounding bridges and construction in this country. That being said...

Our complex has exactly one entrance/exit. I've lost track of exactly when it started, but crews have been repairing the bridge that crosses the (fairly small) river that sits right next to us. It's a mammoth job and while all the heavy equipment and noise has created no small amount of amusement for a two year old who loves anything on wheels, Mommy is really ready for this to be over. Thanks to the newspaper I now know that this millions-of-dollars project will not be completed until next summer. Not this summer - next summer.

Our entrance/exit sits at a bend in the road that cars tend to travel too fast. Trying to leave on a good day often results in taking a deep breath and simply ramming your car out into the traffic flow. I'm actually happy to see the local cop when he decides to park in the drive across the way because traffic actually slows down, and maybe some of the speed-demons might actually get a ticket for their troubles. When they cut down some of the trees to make way for this project it actually increased the visibility which was great. The visibility promptly decreased again when the trees were replaced with various cranes, bulldozers and heavy trucks - not to mention the personal cars of all the construction workers that have decided to park lining our entrance/exit.

I've been trying to hold on, thinking: Hey. Town improvement and all that. But next summer? I'd like to be agreeable and feel that progress is being made, but there are whole stretches of time where no work at all is being done.

All this promises to be even more fun when the New England snow finally descends and the snowplows are looking for somewhere to pile everything that has just been shoveled off the roadways. Yes, my idea of fun is to take your life into your hands every time you try to leave your house. Just one of many reasons that it may be time to move.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Saga Continues

I seem to be a bumpy person.

Besides the obvious reference to having had a baby bump, there has been:

A nice sized lump on the back of my right elbow. You know that spot on your elbow that seems to be termed a "funny bone?" I was in college, and had a nice-sized bruise back there to go with the lump. Said bruise and lump also used to earn me zaps from that nerve, you know the type, where your hand goes tingly and then painfully numb and useless? A visit to the student health center found me a doctor who pretty much advised me to not lean on that elbow when I went to the bar. Um, right. Moving on eventually found me at the University of Michigan Medical Center for my third surgery to try and get everything out... It was eventually termed a histiocytoma, and determined not to be cancerous.

A potential breast lump. And a mammogram and ultrasound to go with, which turned out to be nothing, thank goodness.

A potential thyroid lump. Multiple ultrasounds had subsequent doctors going: Huh? Well, I don't see anything. This thankfully stopped short of the needle biopsy (of the neck! I still get the shivers!).

Gallstones. I ate (or actually didn't eat) my way through the year and a half after having Daniel not knowing about this and not knowing what I could put in my system that wouldn't cause me abdominal pain and/or intestinal distress. Not how I would recommend losing the baby weight. And why it took so long to get this diagnosed I think I will never know.

Liver bumps? So I had gallbladder surgery and recovered and was doing much better thank you when my gastroenterologist's office called. I figured it for a How are you doing after that surgery? type of follow-up call, but no... You know that ultrasound that (finally) showed up your gallstones? There were some spots on your liver that we believe are hemangiomas. You need to get a CT scan to confirm this.

Off I go... this is scheduled for tomorrow, and I will keep you posted. But please, no more bumps for awhile, OK?

Sunday, August 26, 2007

I want to potty all the time...

C'mon, you knew it was inevitable. This blog got started due to the kid, after all. Here 'tis: The post on pee and poop. Our recent visit to the pediatrician also included the question if Daniel was "aware" of needing to go. I'd been putting this out of my mind since umpteen books, online sources and heck, just people in general have all talked about boys training later than girls. So... this has just been something for "later."

There is occasional discussion of "pee" when I ask why he's patting his diaper, and poop time usually results in Daniel running into the other room for some alone time... So, when I thought about it, it turned out that the answer was, Um. Yeah.

I elected to go with one of the potties that fits on the real toilet, 'cuz hey if I can eliminate the step of having to clean the baby potty so much the better. What this also, amazingly, takes into account is Daniel's yen to do things just like Mom and Dad. When I explained what the new potty was, and showed him how it fit on the seat, I also asked him if he wanted to try it out. He nodded yes, and I gave him a boost with his shorts on and all figuring this would just last a second and he would be on to the next thing on his toddler agenda.

He proceeded to start tugging, saying: pants off. The diaper went too, and I'm sure it was entirely coincidental but we had a little pee and lots of praise. I don't plan on pushing any sort of agenda with the training... maybe plunking him on it once a day and seeing what happens and how things progress.

But holy cow is my baby growing up!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Along Came a Spider

I'm not sure that Daniel knew quite what to do when Mama started doing the "heebie-jeebie" dance as we left the house today to go to the grocery store. The dance was the result of the big black thing dangling from the light fixture right in front of my face. Just like the nursery rhyme...

Have I mentioned that I hate bugs?

I can take lots of things. I used to go fishing with my Dad and Grandpa and brother which involved all kinds of bait. Usually worms, but occasionally other stuff. They taught me how to get the fish off the hook too... I can remember having turtles in the old goldfish bowl we had as a kid. And my little brother and I used to grab flashlights and go frog/toad hunting, which usually involved the things peeing down your arm once you got hold of them. As long as I knew they weren't poisonous even the snakes didn't bother me. But give me a many-legged anything and just watch my skin crawl. We seem to have a nice selection of critters in our area, much to H's amusement as he escorts them outside when I find one or another tucked into the corner of my shower in the morning. Things could get interesting around here once Daniel is old enough to really realize just what bugs are and what they do to Mama...

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Boys, Boys

Daniel has sort of connected with a little boy named Edgar at our playgroup. Edgar's Mom and I were talking, when we started hearing some crashing noises from the next room. We investigated, only to see two little figures peering into the dollhouse, with the two of them taking turns sending each wooden piece of furniture crashing down the dollhouse stairs.

And all I could think was Aww, how cute! He's learning how to play with the other boys!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Just a Girl and her Allen Wrench

This was my project of the day... 115+ pieces. Nicely challenged / complicated by the two-year-old who wants to PLAY TRAIN!

We had a hectic weekend the past few days with the last bit of Daniel's "progressive birthday party" at my Mother-in-Law's house with Aunts and Uncles and at least one of the cousins. Daniel did extremely well what with his schedule being turned upside down yet again... He's really pretty adaptable. Tantrum Kid seems to come out nearly exclusively for Mama and Dada and Angel Kid is reserved for everyone else. As a result I've really been holding onto my patience today.

I am thinking of renaming this birthday: Trains, planes, and automobiles (and bikes and trucks and...) as Daniel's focus on anything with wheels has remained firmly in place. One of his birthday trucks actually came with a DVD showing trash trucks and explaining where all the trash and recycling goes. I found it surprisingly interesting!

Friday, August 17, 2007

A Poke in the Arm

Yesterday was Daniel's 2-year appointment. The 18-month appointment was a bit of a scream-fest, so I was uncertain how things would go... The actual visit with the pediatrician went well. We did the usual getting the stats, brief look-see in the ears, questions about how things are going with the eating, sleeping, etc. Then came the Hepatitis B shot. Traumatic, but quick. The topper was realizing that we needed to go upstairs to get blood drawn for a lead test.

I know it's important... especially given the scavenger hunt all us Moms and Dads have been doing recently due to The Great Toy Recall of 2007. But, um, yeah... the last time? It took my husband to hold him down. I decided to brave it out if I could, otherwise it would mean maneuvering another appointment around H's work schedule and so forth. I'm happy to say that we got through it OK. I was a little bit amazed when the doctors office called this morning to say that his blood workup was normal. I don't think I have ever seen such a fast turnaround.

My heart breaks a little bit every time my little guy looks at me and says in a small voice, "Doctor hurt." But I think all has been forgiven. Now if we can just work on the nightly scream-fests that come with the brushing of the teeth.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

It was the strangest thing...

So, what is the strangest thing you ever saw while you were "on the road?" My brother was crossing the Mackinac Bridge on his way home from the visit to our parents' house when he caught this picture. Just like a scene out of Cops!

We had just crossed the border into Ohio, and had taken our first toll ticket when I saw 10-15 emergency vehicles on the other side of the road. As we started speeding up I noticed the FedEx truck that had "reared up" and was crumpled under the overpass like someone had used a can opener on it. H also noted that the cab looked burned. Also noted by us both was the 8-10 mile backup of cars we proceeded to pass. People had actually gotten out of their cars and were walking around talking to each other. As the traffic started to thin out, I wanted to wave a big sign at approaching cars and shout, "Turn Back!!!"

We were driving to playgroup yesterday when I rounded a corner and had to drive around what looked like a door flat on the road in the intersection with what looked like an industrial saw horse on top of it. This was reminiscent of the time I was driving to my summer job years ago and rounded a corner to find a desk and chair in my lane. They were perfectly set up, as though they were just waiting for a computer and office worker. A little way up the road was a pickup that had pulled over to get their errant desk.

What about you?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Tag Team Restauraunt-Going

Sigh. OK, so I know, I know, he's two... but any recommendations about how to get the kid to sit still in a restaurant?

We thought we would have a brief dinner out yesterday. Daniel is sort of getting a "birthday month" this year. We spent the 10 days leading up to his birthday with my family in Wisconsin (thanks Grandma and Grandpa for the bike!). And the actual day fell hard on the heels of the 1,200 mile trek home. Knowing we were all kinda tired and messed up schedule-wise we thought of a dinner out as a celebration, with getting together with H's family for another time. Dinner, unfortunately, became a tag-team event in controlling the toddler with one of us getting up from the table and even taking him outside if things were getting too unbearable. Any toys I brought were a distraction for about .2 seconds. Drinks were only good if he got to drink one of ours ("sip! SIP!"), and he was not content to just take a drink through the straw ("HOLD!").

We probably need to start enforcing more dinnertime rules at home, but it's hard. H and I are on wildly different schedules during the (6-day) work week, which makes sitting down all together at the table for meals difficult. Can someone please tell me that this is a phase? And when does it end? I don't want to not take him out places, but sheesh! Yesterday had me contemplating food delivery rather than eating out for the next few years.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


There are some very nice friends of my parents in their neighborhood. We visited many of them recently, just to say "hi" (And who am I kidding, to show off Daniel a little...) One of these friends, Burt, collects and sometimes even races cars. Daniel took a shine to a yellow car in the garage that Burt and Teddi referred to as "the Dino." Come to find out from talking to my father later that car is a Dino Ferrari, much like the one pictured, and is quite expensive. Just the thing I want my two-year-old's hands all over!

We are home. Three sore behinds from 1,200 plus miles in the car with a toddler. A toddler who is now wildly off his schedule for little things like sleeping and eating. But hearts are all the richer for getting to spend relaxing and fun time with far away family.