Saturday, February 27, 2010


Jack is very secure in his masculinity.

Thanks Mom!

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Is it still a still if I'm not makin' moonshine?
Red raspberry leaves steeping in my strainer... not a proper steeper.

See the leaves that snuck through the wires of the strainer? Ick!

No cheesecloth? No problem! Cloth napkin to the rescue!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Group Party

I have to say, I'm so glad I have this group. (Jack is of course glad too as he talks about his friends all the time.) I'm going to give the 'what they're really thinking caption.' Because they have thoughts, and they love to share them. Fortunately, I'm fluent in toddler.

Amedeo: I'm a little nervous about hosting this many people and my molars are freekin' killin' me!

Leora: I'm a big sister. Wanna see my tongue?!

Brooks: Did someone put carrots in the carrot cake?!?! Are you people trying to poison me?!?!

Jocelyn: I'm going to stick my chin out until one of you fools turns on Elmo.

Andreas: Jack, let me give you the scoop on this big brother gig....

Jillian: I hear the babies grow in mommy's belly, but don't ask me how they get there... I have no idea!

Jack: Guys, they're about to try and take a picture of all of us, get in the cars, we gotta get the h*ll out of dodge!!

Cady: I'm way ahead of ya' buddy.

Andreas, Carsten, Jocelyn, Cadence, Jillian, Jack, Amedeo

Andreas, Carsten, Jocelyn, Cadence, Leora, Brooks, Jack, Amedeo

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

To-Do List

In an effort to complete some things on my to-do list I hit the bookstore. I picked up this 365 Buddha it has a little meditation for each day and it's not labeled by calendar day just labeled 1-365, which is good because if/when you skip a few days you can just pick up where you left off. Good food for thought!

I also finally found a new author who has written a bunch of books not in sequence. Usually I love a good series but it's refreshing to be able to read them in any order! Jodi Picoult wrote My Sister's Keeper which was made into a movie; I never saw the movie but I started there. Apparently most of her writings are based in medical and legal drama. They would be super great for a book club because I could see getting into some interesting philosophical discussions about the content.

So that's 2 down and 10.5 to go.

Monday, February 22, 2010


Where in the world are GiGi and PaPa? (Sung to the Where In The World Is Carmen San Diego theme).

Every February my parents fly south for the winter. Okay, they don't actually fly because my mom would have to sedate herself -heavily- in order to get on a plane. They drive. Every year they play golf on the way down (otherwise a 14 hour trip in a strait-shot is very tedious). They stop at BoBo and PopPops... clearly we have a thing for simple grandparent nicknames in my family. This year my brother flew down to join them for a few days.

They always visit my dad's BFF from kindergarten (or some equally parochial age) and his wife in Miami. This year tom got to drive some very fast car with a very cool engine (I'm told) in it that makes Matt drool a little... if Jack were old enough to have car stats memorized he'd drool too.

They visit their friends who live in OC with them during the year but own or rent for 2-4 months during those unbearable Maryland winters (irony only not applicable to this actually unbearable winter).

Their schedule reads like a college graduate backpacking through Europe; 3 days here, 5 days there... zigzagging across the state. And then there are the phone calls... no I'm not sitting by the pool, it's not warm and cloudless today, we're not having cocktails. Jerks.

Miss you! Love you! Come back soon!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Handy Men

Need an oil change? No problem!
This past week I met up with one of my Littles from Phi Sigma Pi. This is Jen and this is her handsome little man, Brody!

Friday, February 19, 2010

New Cat: A review

If we're being completely honest there were 3 reasons we got the new cat:
  • Monkey is kind of a b*tch, and isn't friendly very to guests or toddlers. Jack needed a cat to love.
  • I wanted a kitten. They're cute, cuddly and they come fully potty trained.
  • We go away a lot and I always feel bad leaving anti-social Monkey alone for a week/weekend.

But this is what we got out of getting a new cat:
  • Monkey who used to over-eat (to the point of puking) about once in a while was over-eating almost daily, finally we got fed up and switched to dye-free cat food hoping it would just make for easier clean up. Now we're living barf free. (Don't ask me why I was buying cat food with dyes in it...)
  • Monkey is so much more social! To the 3 of us at least.
  • Jack has a kitty cat buddy who tolerates smothering hugs, pretend vet care, getting fallen down on, pokes to the eyes, ears and whiskers for anatomy lessons.
  • Lap Cat!
  • Admittedly it's not all rainbows and tra la la here in kitten-ville, we're also breaking a BAD human-food-eating habit and stealing of stuffed animals that are as large as the kitten, which means few animals are safe from capture.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Backseat Driver

Jack's favorite thing to do in the car, lately, is to be a backseat driver. Every time we reach an intersection he tells me "this way" or "that way". At first it was really confusing, because I kept wondering if he knew something I didn't. Then it was really cute. Now it's kinda annoying because he is starting to get PISSED when I don't go the way he wants me to go.

I'm your mother not your chauffeur, buddy.
Still, it is pretty funny. He clearly gets this from me, because I'm constantly making helpful suggestions directional demands when Matt is driving.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Birthday Party Review

We had a birthday boy.

He commanded his army of robots party favors.

We had guests: Charlie, Cady, Colin, Emma, Liam, Amedeo, Brooks & parents, Andrew and Lia.

We also had some adults. Though, frankly the idea that my friends and I are 'adults' is quite scary.

We had a robot, which Matt re-named the 'Abominable Snow-bot' (both because he thinks I wasn't maxing out my artistic skills and because it has been snowing LOTS around here.)

Jack was glad to eat him. Head first.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Final Stretch

Those last 10-ish weeks. I don't love them. Why?

  • The dreaded Sneeze-pee.
  • Feeling like my pubic arch is going to snap in half.

  • Patience. I'm not notorious for being the most patient person ever but those last 10 weeks just about anything can push me spiraling towards a ::face palm:: or a ::head desk::
  • Waddling. Who likes to waddle? Yeah, that's what I thought.
  • Heartburn. Constant, before food, during food, after food, after Tums. Bah!
  • Waiting. We remember the waiting. Susan was told the pregnancy gods owed her 5 days after her first... but she didn't get them 'paid back' the second time around, she had to wait. I'd like to think I'm owed some days too but somehow I'm thinking no.
  • Socks. Putting on something as simple as socks becomes an Olympic event. (And not a fun one to watch like gymnastics or curling.)
  • Kung Fu. Fetal movement which was cute and not painful for the second trimester becomes much more OW and a lot less Aww.
  • Decisions. I don't know about anyone else out there but I become essentially incapable of making decisions. "What's for lunch?" is as paralyzing as "Mommy where do babies come from?"
  • Paranoid thoughts. I blame the pregnancy hormones for these but they can range from 'my friends really hate me, they're just faking it' to 'my husband is going to leave me' (this one comes fully equipped with fun nightmares) to 'I'm forgetting something, and it's life-threateningly important.'
  • The Waiting, did I mention the waiting? I'm so ready to meet my other Musketeer I'm ready to be done being pregnant right now... almost. (If it weren't for that whole pesky preemie thing.)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Random Confluence

Today's blog is a random grouping of things.

First Jack demonstrated the aftermath of a night of partying.

Then we went to LLBean. God, I love that store. Seriously, I have a problem. It's a good thing I'm pregnant because I'm not tempted to buy the clothes right now (shoes are not so lucky). On the way home we accidentally ended up at TJs. Finally, on the way home, for real, we saw some houses with massive icicles on them so we stopped a few times and hung the camera out the window. People probably thought we were casing the neighborhood. The school right by my house had more icicles and larger icicles than I thought possible to be found on one building. It's kinda more wall-o-ice than icicle.

I claimed to be working on my to-do list and here is proof:
Blanket for baby.

Draft-stopper for the sliders (one for upstairs and one for downstairs).

I also painted one of these for the baby. Where Jack's is shades of blue the baby's is shades of green.

3 crafts down 2 to go.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Here's a preview. Full party re-cap to come! Happy 2nd Birthday Jack!!

Next year (because I'm emotionally scarred from all this snow) I'm going to offer him a half-birthday celebration instead. If he wants to celebrate with his friends in the dead of winter that's fine, but if he wants to have a backyard BBQ in the summer that's fine too!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Kids say the darndest things

Aside from Jack's usual attempts to put the cats in time out or tell us stories about running and bonking 3 gems from this morning were:

Matt is trying to get Jack to eat his breakfast but Jack wants to read the magazine with Matt so he keeps standing up in his chair to try and see what Matt is looking at. Matt says, "Jack you need to sit down." Jack says "I can't sit down."

Second I'm wearing my stylish and attractive maternity support belt (because apparently it helps when your pelvis feels like it's going to break in half). I'm wearing it over my also very stylish pyjamas. Jack walks up to me and points to my stunningly attractive maternity belt and says "Mommy's pretty."

Finally several things 'went missing' or really simply were not in Jack's sight line precisely when he wanted them to be there so we heard the following: "Kitty cat, where are you?" "Sook (his frog he sleeps with), where are you?" "Paci, where are you?"

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow Boredom Busters


  • Play dress-up. Here Jack was dressed as Daddy (note the fancy government name tag). After he put it on he walked over to me, kissed me on the lips and said "I love you. Bye-Bye." Too funny!

  • Bake yummy cookies.

  • Play with our dried black eyed peas.

  • Promote Daddy to the role of "Noble Steed". Clearly this photo was taken right after naptime.

  • Watched Cars, and open Jack's birthday present from Carter. (Woo-hoo for new toys saved for just the right moment!!)

  • Did an art project with crayons, stickers and googly eyes.

  • Worked on our impression of Albert Einstein.

  • Help with the first dig-out.

  • Learn some of Mommy's yoga moves.

I think tomorrow we're going to move on to indoor Fort-Building.


  • Wii (Mostly Resort and SuperMario).
  • Sewed 2 draft stoppers, one for each slider.
  • Knit hunter green baby blanket.
  • Watch Hoarders (an A&E show) Matt and I both are enjoying marveling at the strange-ness of it all.
  • Eat cookies, as baked with Jack in the kid-friendly activities.
  • Nap, this one is mostly me. My pelvis hurts so badly, the only thing that helps me get through the pain is sleep. Tylenol, heating pad and hot shower have all failed me.
  • Enjoy more episodes of Battlestar Galactica because our AWESOME mail carrier delivered us a new Netflix yesterday! Woot!!
  • Shoveling.
  • Laundry.

Tomorrow we're going to move on to cleaning up the whole house. Whether nesting or not this place needs a good tidying!

So, tell me, what are your snow boredom busters?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I love the Internet.

Do you? Do you have an internet 'problem'?

Okay, seriously though... if you're shamelessly addicted to the internet, like me, what blogs, forums, websites, social network sites, online shopping pages, (don't lie!) are you MOST addicted to? I'm looking to enhance my 'Favorites' tab with a few additional sites in an attempt to remain busy during the next phase of the Snowpocalypse.

Also, what's your favorite thing to 'do' online?
See the quiz... but this time you can only choose ONE!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Phase 3 in Toddler Sleep

Just to recap:
Phase 1- utter despair, sleep deprivation, and complaining about a situation that we as parents in due diligence must acknowledge that we have somehow created.
Phase 2- explain to Jack that when he 'goes night-night' he is, in-fact, going to be 'okay' and 'mommy and daddy will be right here, doing night-night too'.

Phase 2 essentially worked. Going to bed, and going back to bed (during the course of the night) have returned to the quick and dirty processes they have always been. Here's a paci, here's a little song. Peace out, cub scout.

Well' on any given night we seem to have quite the varying rate of success and there seems to be no correlation with the day's activities. Once a week he goes to sleep immediately and doesn't need us till morning. Probably 2-3 times a week we have one or 2 wake-ups or 1 bedtime do-over and 1 mid-night wake up, no big deal, considering where we were a month ago. The other 4 days a week we'll have somewhere between 3 and 6 wake-ups or bedtime do-overs. These night I could, obviously do without. I'm sure Matt could too, since he's the one (the only one) Jack is calling for.

All of this leads us to Phase 3.

Phase 3- reward the nights that he does well. I know what you're thinking. DUH! Well, I've got pregnancy brain and sleep deprivation so this didn't occur to me until the other day, so STFU!

I remember talking to a friend parenting expert who was telling me that her 3 year old still asks for a drink of water 6/7 nights usually at a really convenient time like 3am. They tried all kinds of bribery and pleading to no avail. Finally one night that she didn't do it they said "Wow, Emma, you did such a great job staying in your bed all night. I'm so proud of you!" Next night... she didn't need water.

So Saturday night we talked about how it was a 'good, big-boy thing to do' to stay in bed all night. We only had one wake up. In the morning we told Jack how great a job he did, only needing Daddy one time in the middle of the night. We talked about it again tonight before bed. I've already heard him wake up once, crying, he put himself back to bed (he literally hasn't done that in 3 months!) I'm not calling it a success yet... but we are certainly embracing Phase 3 of the Official FruitCake Sleep Solutions guide.

Why cross out 'parenting expert', you ask? There are only 2 parenting experts in the world: people who have never had kids so they can comfortably pretend that they actually know everything, and people who are so divorced from reality that they actually believe they have all the answers. Even said friend, with her 4 kids, 10 years or 22 combined years experience knows she doesn't have all... or even half the answers.
What works for me won't work for everyone, what works for me now probably won't work for me next week.
That is a parenting lesson I can get behind.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Great Dig-Out

Dig, Boys, Dig!

Too cool. Sadly he ran around with them pushed up on his head but I couldn't get a shot of that.

Kevin, Matt, Matt, Jon, Gavin

The snow warriors of the Ct. They were manly men who shoveled and shoveled until not only the pregnant-lady cars were free, but many other non-pregnant cars were freed as well. They were so dashing and brave!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Aftermath

We're estimating 36" or maybe a bit more.

Finally we're dug out.

The neighborhood maze.

Out of eggs? No problem I'll just hop in my car..........

And then it stopped.

And did this.

And this.