Tuesday, September 20, 2011

It's Pumpkin Time!

Halloween is coming up (how did a year go by so quickly??) and that means it's time to start planning little G's costume. Last year was pretty easy. I found a super cute robot costume from Children's Place at the last minute so it was on sale. He was adorable, despite the fact that MIL thought he was a computer, whatever.

Here he is last year:

(Oh my God! Look at my tiny baby!! *sob*)

For some reason this year I just can't come up with any good ideas. I've scoured the internet and the stores and I'm coming up short. So far these are the few ideas I've come across that look even remotely good.

Max from Where the Wild Things Are



An Owl

So far that's all I've come up with. Honestly? None of them are really striking me as "the one." Since G is still on the cusp of being a toddler I really want to be able to put him in something that's cute and sweet. My time to dress him the way I want to is limited. Before I know it he's going to want to be a ninja or vampire, which will be fine, but I want to get all I can out of this baby stage while it lasts. So... anyone have any better ideas?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Ready For Fall

The blog took a small hiatus while the family took a vacation to Florida to visit Husband's family. Florida in September is... hot. Like Hell, with steam. Our neck of the woods is so opposite weather wise that I actually had to buy summer clothes for the three of us. Hopefully I'll get around to doing a post on our trip soon, but for now I'm sticking to the Monday Fashion post.

Mid-September means it is time to start breaking out the Fall wardrobe. Although our area actually tends to have a few warm weeks around this time of year, I can't wait to try out a few new trends. One of them being flares. I remember when I was about 14 I swore up and down that I would never wear them, that they were utterly hideous. A couple years later they came into style and I found myself eating crow. Since then I have learned to never say never when it comes to fashion.

Once again flares have made a comeback in the fashion world. Like a lot of trends I suspect this one will go just as quickly as it came so I'm not willing to invest a whole lot in it, but I did want to try it out. That's where Target comes in. Always a good way to get your feet wet. Let's take a look at today's look shall we?

Cardigan: Marshalls (circa 2008), Flares: Target

When it gets too warm the cardigan comes off and voila, we have a cool summery look.

Top: Forever 21, Necklace: A vendor at a quilt show (circa 2006)

An attempt at showing my hair - don't mind me neighbor man, just taking pictures of myself...

A pretty good fit for jeans from Target. I also love the lace detail on the top.

This is called a Dutch braid, which is essentially an inverted French braid. Also note the makeup, I had a little lesson in eye shadow from my cousin. :)

After taking a series of ugly pictures (think bags under the eyes, double chins, weird angles) I decided to go ahead and just make some "ugly" faces on purpose. I think I need to work on my photography/modeling skills otherwise my pictures are going to look like this from now on...

Oh! And the shoes! Who could forget the shoes? (Pay no attention to my "garden" in the background.)

Shoes: Marshalls

I have to admit that these shoes are a little less than mom-friendly. They certainly aren't something I'm going to be chasing G-Man around in, but they are pretty. They also serve a purpose. Flares, in my opinion, don't look very good with flat shoes. Every pair of flats I've tried with the flares has made my legs look kind of squat. These definitely helped to elongate the gams. Also, they are a nice little pick-me-up. Nothing like a good pair of heels to make you walk a little taller. :)

As a side note, little G- Man must have been feeling rather pooped from our trip because he ended up taking a record breaking four hour nap today. Sadly this means he was not present for our fashion shoot. Instead I leave you with His Royal Cuteness on vacation.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Jamma Jamma Jamma, PJ!

It's Pajama Time!

Today is the kind of day that calls for PJs. It's ridiculously cold and blustery outside. G-Man didn't sleep well last night which in turn means Mama didn't sleep well either. Add that to the fact that my pants are a little snug and my face is all broken out like a teenager (WTF?) and I'm definitely not in a fashonista mood today. When I rolled out of bed this morning to collect G from his crib, only to find that his supersize overnight diaper had leaked all over, I was done before the day even started. Thus, I declared an official pajama day, and no, I will not be sharing pictures of our outfits. :P

Instead I thought I'd share a couple of my favorite outfits this summer and a clip of one of my favorite movies (which we are watching while all snuggled up on the couch).

On me - Top: Forever 21, Pleated Shorts: Target, Sandals: Ross, Sunglasses: Marshalls. On G - He's a Target baby all the way!

Maxi Dress: Target, G's outfit: Target

And now I leave you with possibly one of the best scenes ever! Gotta love Rupert Everett...

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Breakfast Club

Today's look is somewhat reminiscent of The Breakfast Club. Specifically... Judd Nelson:

Comfortable, casual, and slightly rocker/badass - all things every Mama should be. ;)

Boots: Steve Madden (Macy's Sale), Purple Socks: Target

Jacket w/Zipper Details: Costco, Dress as Shirt: Kohl's, Skinny Cargo Pants: Forever 21

Hat & Bracelet: Target

Belt: Target

In my neck of the woods layers are essential as is the ability to vary an outfit with a couple of quick changes.

Ditching the jacket for the warmer part of the day.

Here I switched out the shoes for a slightly more demure look. Added a silver headband and threw my hair up into what Husband lovingly calls "the hairball."

And the little baby rocker:

Will Sweep For Food!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Here We Go Again...

Just a reminder, this blog started off when I was pregnant and on bed rest. I started this blog to talk about everything I was going through, the good, the bad and the ugly. As a mom I'm still encountering the good, bad and ugly on a daily basis. So... just to make sure you all have fair waring, I will still be discussing the following from time to time:


...and probably a lot of other things that haven't even occurred to me yet. If you have an aversion to those things then turn back now.

Sometimes I'll be posting about what I'm wearing, or the cute thing that G-Man did, but other days I'm going to be writing about diaper blowouts and irritated uteruses (uteri?). Today is going to be one of those days.

It's the most wonderful time of the year. That oh so wonderful time when you get to don a paper gown in a cold office, stick your feet into stirrups (not the kind for riding horses) and make awkward conversation while a doctor pokes around in between your legs. Wait... that's not the most wonderful time of the year?? Hmm, yeah, I guess not.

I used to dread these appointments, so much so that I think I avoided actually going to one until I was twenty-two. Bad I know. But, ever since having a baby my sense of humility seems to have gone down considerably. Falling out of my paper gown? Who cares! Chatting while I'm being probed? Not a problem. Doing those things with my one-year-old squirming in his stroller? Not really my idea of fun.

This morning G-Man and I woke up a little late. Knowing that I had about 30 minutes in which to get myself ready, the baby ready and out the door, I jumped out of bed in a panic. I grabbed little G and plopped him onto the changing table and a tantrum immediately ensued. Lately he's had issues with me changing him. Husband can change him 'til the cows come home, but if I do it we have a total meltdown. It's a fight every.single.time. So, as G flopped and flailed all over the table, I did my best to prevent poop from flying across the room, wiped him up, strapped on a new diaper and got him dressed. Next I ran out to the living room and gave him some toys to keep him preoccupied and then ran back to the bedroom to get myself ready. When I returned to the living room I found the sweet little monster sitting in the middle of the floor, gleefully pulling tissues of of their box one at a time and then tossing them aside before grabbing the next. Gah!

After cleaning up the tissues I grabbed my coffee and some food for G and found a way to simultaneously guzzle and shove food into him at the same time. Once we were done with that I made sure the diaper bag was packed. Food for G, snacks, water, diapers, wipes, change of clothes, yep it was all there. We were finally ready. All I had to do was slip my shoes on and we were ready to go. Then, just as I reached for my keys the phone rang. After all of that my appointment had to be pushed back because Dr. M had a surgery go late at the hospital. They said they would call me back later to tell me when to come in. My friend was scheduled to watch G during my appointment but not wanting to leave her hanging I decided to just bring G whenever they wanted me to come in.

Fast forward to my appointment. ***Here comes the unpleasant stuff - yes, more unpleasant than a flying poop visual*** I brought G-Man into the exam room with me. I strapped him into his little umbrella stroller so he would be contained during the exam and then gave him a bunch of snacks. Food always makes him happy. Then, just before Dr. M came in I noticed a smell, a distinct smell... sure enough, poopy diaper number two. There I sat, in a revealing paper gown, with quite the dilemma, crouch down on the floor and attempt to change G (on the yucky floor) before Dr. M came in, or leave him as he was and hope he didn't get too stinky (or rashy). Ultimately I chose the latter scenario. So, in addition to lying there, paper gown failing to cover me while Dr. M chatted and probed away, I got to have the smell of a poopy diaper occasionally waft over me. Dr. M either didn't notice or was too polite to say anything. Probably just too polite.

I'll spare you the details of the actual exam and try to focus more on what we discussed. Unfortunately over the last few months my symptoms from Endometriosis have returned with a vengeance. I was pretty lucky in that my period didn't return until G-Man was 11 months old, but when it did I'm pretty sure my body decided to make up for it by bleeding for six weeks straight. Yes, you read that right, six weeks. Dr. M said that my ultrasound was mostly normal except that my uterine lining was pretty thin. She agreed that not taking the progesterone only pill anymore was probably for the best. Then she started discussing my pain. Her best guess is that I have some scar tissue building back up and that I have increased pain from my tilted uterus. This is where it gets really good. Her suggestion? Have all the babies we are planning on having and the go ahead with a laparoscopic uterine suspension. A what??

Essentially this is what a "normal" uterus looks like vs. what my tilted uterus looks like:

For more information check out this site.

"What is the treatment for a tipped uterus?

If you have a tipped uterus and are experiencing symptoms, your physician may recommend surgery to reposition the uterus. A uterine suspension can typically reduce the pain experienced during intercourse and/or menstruation. This surgical procedure is used to reposition a tipped uterus from its backward facing position to a forward facing position. The UPLIFT procedure is a newer and improved method of performing a uterine suspension. It has been proven to have fewer postoperative complications than other uterine suspension procedures. Uterine repositioning provides lasting pain relief in most cases of painful sex and in some cases of painful menstruation."

The alternative is a hysterectomy. Or I could just live with the pain. I guess we shall see.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

12, 13, 14 (almost)

Where has the time gone? Have I mentioned that my baby is not really a baby anymore? At almost 14 months old he doing decidedly kid-like things. Sometimes it is so wonderful to watch him grow and learn and other times I just want to cry out, "No!! Stop growing!! Stay just as you are!!!!" Thankfully for everyone involved (even me) he continues to grow and learn each day. In fact, right now he's walking (yes walking!) around our living room babbling and laughing like a mad man, stopping only to pick up the occasional toy, inspect it and then toss it aside. When he catches me watching he tilts his head to the side and gives a big ol' smile. Quite the little man.

So what have we been up to the last couple of months? Growing, growing, growing!

Stats: Weight - 19lbs 12oz at 12 months and approximately 21lbs now. Height 29.5in (at 12 months). He just started fitting into his size 12 months clothes although in things like one-piece pajama sets he's starting to need the 18 months size because he's so long. I think he technically could still fit into the 9 months size pants around the waist (he's a skinny mini!) but he way too long for them so instead he'll have to deal with saggy pants. He was fitting nicely into size 3 shoes and then I noticed they were getting a little tight so I took him to get measured for new shoes. He's now a whopping 4.5/5 wide (you can thank Daddy-o for those wide feet little G-Man).

Walking: Little man is now walking like a pro. He keeps me busy chasing after him. I will say that certain things still trip him up (literally), like uneven/bumpy surfaces, needing to step up or down, or inclines. Yesterday we were leaving the house and he tripped over the threshold smacking his head into the doorway. There were tears. Lots and lots of tears. Also, when he tries to combine walking with any other task, like drinking water it's pretty much a recipe for disaster. He now has a lovely cut on his chin and lip from a run in with a sippy cup. Lesson learned, don't drink and walk.

Language: We're pretty sure G is fluent in some sort of alien language. It sounds a lot like "dooka dooka, DO da, gwee bah JOO mah!! It has a similar cadence and inflection to the English language but is quite clearly foreign. He points at stuff and gestures while he talking too. Pretty interesting stuff. Then there are the real words: go, bye-bye, hi, mama, dada, up, down, cold, water (wawa), banana (nana), that (dat), doggy (dahdah), belly button (bay buh un), I did it, I got it, all done, all gone. I know there are other words he says but for the life of me I can't think of them now. He can also do the sign for "more." I'm not big on the whole baby sign language trend, but he was getting frustrated (and so was I) during meal time so I showed it to him a couple of times and he picked it up pretty quickly.

In terms of comprehension, I'm pretty sure he understand a large percentage of what I say. He can follow pretty simple directions, i.e. come here, go get the ball, etc. When we ask him where his head is he smacks his head with his hands, he can also locate my belly button when asked. We're working on pointing to his nose, but he frequently ends up poking himself in the eye with one.

Other cute things: G loves to point at things. He loves to visit with our neighbor who takes him around the back yard for little nature walks. He points at everything and babbles away while he does it. He also recently learned how to clap (right around 12 months I think) and now he does it for everything. Sometimes I'll be watching TV and if people start clapping on there he'll stop what he's doing, luck up at me and clap very enthusiastically. He waves bye-bye (and sometimes for hello) pretty well, but it's usually after the person has already gone.

Every night Husband and I read G man stories and then Husband says goodnight, gives him hugs and kisses then and blows G kisses from the door. For the past few months I've been helping G blow kisses back. Yesterday, for the first time ever he blew me a kiss on his own. I actually think he's been trying to do it for a while but was confusing it with the fun game of patting his hand over his mouth to make the "wah wah wah" sound.

I have had terrible allergies since I got pregnant with G and for some reason they have never gone away. Because of this, when G was still pretty small I got into the habit of making a big production out of my sneezes. Right after I sneezed I would say "Achoo!!" and be super silly about it. If I didn't do it that way he would get scared. Now it's just habit for me to say "Achoo" after I sneeze and it still makes him laugh. This morning I walked into the living room where G was playing and I sneezed twice. He turned to look at me and before I could say anything he smiled really big and said "Achoo Achoo!" Smarty pants.

G loves TV. I'm a little ashamed to admit this one. I know the AAP actually recommends that children don't watch until at least two years old, but really I think I would have lost my marbles early on without a little background noise here and there. Luckily He mostly only watches when there is music playing. He loves the intro to The Cat In The Hat Knows A Lot About That, Super Why, and Backyardigans. He squeals with delight, runs up to the TV and dances around (which is more like a funny little booty shake). Then when the music is over he goes back to playing. Oh and he loves the theme song to General Hospital.

A few pictures of my guy:

The birthday boy

My handsome little man

Monday, August 15, 2011

Monday Mommy Fashion

Well hello there blog world! It's been way too long since my last post. A lot has happened (hello my baby is almost 14 months!!) and I'd like to try to get back in to posting regularly. I've been toying with the idea of doing a weekly weight loss post, maybe including some pictures of the process but I don't quite know if I'm brave enough for that yet. So, instead I came up with the brilliant yet not very original idea of doing a weekly fashion post. We'll see how long that lasts. ;)

I confess: I have a momiform. That is a uniform that fits my mommy lifestyle pretty comfortably. Is it attractive? Probably not. Is it comfortable. Yes! Right after the little man was born I found myself living in "easy access" tank tops and sweats most of the time. Then if I had to go out I traded in the sweats for jeans. Cute, right? No, not so much, but it worked. Then I started following a blog called Ain't No Mom Jeans which inspired me to start putting a little more effort into my overall look. Slowly I've built up a wardrobe of affordable clothes that I feel are both comfortable and flattering. So... now my plan is to post a weekly look with all the details. I will say that I am not a model nor a professional photographer. Just your average Mama who likes clothes. You may not like my style and that's A-OK with me!

So, without further ado... What I'm wearing today:

Top & Tank: Target, Ankle length jeggings: Kohl's, Flip Flops: random shoe store in Miami circa 2007

Belt: Target

Makeup: My routine tends to be short and sweet, not much time for all the frills with a little one pulling on my legs, but what I use - Foundation: Clinque, Powder: Bluff Dust by Benefit, Under Eye Concealer: Simply Ageless by Covergirl & Olay, Bronzer: Benefit, Blush: Bourjois, Mascara: Whatever is on sale at Target :)

And finally, what the little man is wearing:

Overalls: Thrifted Levi's, Sesame St. T-Shirt: Target, Shoes: Stride Rite

On the move:

Friday, June 24, 2011

Define "Broken"

Because there was absolutely no way I could fully express my frustration in a short Facebook status update, I turn back to my old friend Blogger. The title of this particular post? Something my landlord just said to me over the phone with regards to our dishwasher. Before I get ahead of myself let's recap for those that have not seen my posts through Facebook.

About two weeks ago... no wait. I have to start even earlier than that. Over a year ago, when we first moved in our landlords kept going on and on about how they had just put a new dishwasher in and wasn't that just great? They seemed overly proud of it in fact. Don't get me wrong. I was very happy to move into a place with a dishwasher, I think it's a dandy appliance, it was just odd how they kept on mentioning it to us. That and the brand new front door they put in. They're proud of weird things. Anyhoodle, we moved in and the dishwasher was great, it did in fact cleaned our dishes. Then, about a month or so ago our dishes stopped getting clean. It was subtle at first, our glasses came out with a kind of film on them so I bought that Jet Dry stuff. No help. Then I noticed our silverware wasn't getting clean. Then from there nothing was getting clean. I kid you not, I can put a mug that was used for coffee (something that I can rinse under the faucet and have it look relatively clean) in there and it will come out with the coffee still in it. And yet I didn't call the landlords about it. For several reasons really; life is stressful, they kind of intimidate me, I hate confrontation, and I worried they wouldn't believe me since it is a "new" dishwasher.

So, about two weeks ago I was running a load of dishes, fully aware that about 75% of them would be coming out dirty, when I smelled smoke. I came out of the baby's room and saw a stream of smoke coming out of our dishwasher. I quickly opened the washer up and as smoke billowed out I made sure there were no actual flames that needed to be put out. As smoke filled the air, I quickly ran to our sliding glass door to air our place out before our alarms could go off. Back to the washer I went. The smoke was dissipating and I could see we were in no imminent danger so I calmly sent Husband a message on messenger telling him what happened. "Call the landlords." Ummm, hint, hint, honey-pie, I want you to do call them, not me! No dice though. I was forced to make the call as Husband was actually at work and had work calls to make. Bummer.

So, I called them and explained the situation and they said they would send Dan the Handyman by to take a look. Dan the Handyman is just a general handyman kind of guy. So far he's repaired the faucets in our bathroom, replaced out water heater after that caught on fire (yep, that's now two fires we didn't cause in our place) and done a few other small tasks here and there. So he came over the next day and the first thing he asks after hearing my tale? "Are you sure it was smoke? You know these things can let off a lot of steam." Um, thanks Dan the Handyman for implying that I'm such a moron that I can't tell the difference between smoke and steam. I informed him that unless steam smells like burning food and can set off smoke detectors I was pretty sure it was in fact smoke. So he continued his inspection and left telling me he couldn't find anything wrong with it.

The next day I got a call from the husband part of our landlord duo and he informed me that they couldn't find anything wrong and he had bought some stuff for us to treat our water (we have hard water) and he would bring it by when he got around to it. No mention of the fact that it had smoke coming out of it. It must be the hard water. End of conversation. Several more days went by and I finally asked Husband to contact them. Sometimes, as unfair as it is, people take men more seriously. Especially people like my landlords. I'm pretty sure no one would have asked Husband if he had mistaken steam for smoke! Anyway, so Husband called and a few minutes later I received a call from the wife part of our landlord duo. She told me repeatedly that I probably just needed to soak my dishes, and get special soap, and pre-wash them. I informed her that I do in fact soak/rinse my dishes, that my habits with regards to doing the dishes has not changed since we moved in. The washer used to get our dishes clean and now it doesn't. That, to me, does not equal a functioning dishwasher. Finally she agreed to send out an actual appliance repair guy.

Sooo, last Tuesday Appliance Mike came to take a look. At first he tried to sell me on the idea that we needed to use better soap, but after I showed him some dishes that had been run through our washer and were clearly still dirty he decided to actually try to run the machine himself. After running it and opening it mid-cycle several times he said "well, there's your problem... it isn't spraying water." He informed me it needed a new motor. He would be in contact with my landlords and then get back to me. That was Tuesday. Today, Friday, I had still not heard from anyone, neither Appliance Mike, nor the Landlord Duo, so I mustered all my courage (God how I hate confrontation) and called the husband landlord. After explaining that we had had a repair man out who had informed me that our washer was in fact broken, he said, "You had a repair man out??" I said, "Well, no, we didn't, your wife sent one here." "Oh well she didn't tell me, what did he say?" I informed him that the repair man said the washer was broken so I was just wondering when it was going to be fixed. His response? "Well, define "broken." WTF? It's broken! As in does not work. Ceases to function! It is built to clean dishes and it does not do its job. What I actually said was that the repair man told me it does not spray water and needs a new motor. Long story short(er) he tried to tell the other repair guy said it was fine so it must be fine. I felt the heat rise to my cheeks as I said "Look, it had smoke coming out of it and on top of that it does not get our dishes clean. At this point I am having to hand wash all of our dishes and that just isn't acceptable to me." He couldn't have hung up the phone faster. He told me he would call his wife and hung up.

Several minutes later my phone rang and the wife was on the other end. She let me know that she would be coming by to take a look for herself (as if she could see something Appliance Mike couldnt??). I quickly ran around try to make our place look like a bomb didn't just go off and she showed up at the door about twenty minutes later. She looked around my kitchen (dishes soaking in the sink) and said "well you really can't run dirty dishes like that through the washer, they won't get clean. I have to practically pre-wash my dishes first. I said "right, I'm soaking those so I can wash them by hand later. I'm not going to put them in the washer there's no point since it doesn't work." I showed her a pot that had been run through and how it was still dirty. She didn't believe me. She told me that if dishwasher runs then it has to work. It either works or it doesn't. (Um, ok...) Then she asked if it fills with water properly. I said yes. Then she asked if it drained properly. I said yes. Triumphantly she exclaimed, "Then it works!" As calmly as possible I said, "No. It does NOT work. Yes it may run through the cycle (rinse, wash, rinse, drain - or whatever), but it does NOT spray water. The repair man told me it does not spray water so our dishes will NOT EVER get clean. It NEEDS A NEW MOTOR!" She gave one last ditch effort at telling me I need to pre-wash my dishes, all dishwashers are that way, blah blah blah. I told her for the fifty billionth time that it used to get our dishes clean and now it does not. I have not changed my habits the dishwasher has therefore the problem lies with the machine not me. Then I told her what I've been wanting to say all along, which is that we would not have rented a place without a functioning dishwasher and we need this to be fixed. All dejected she said "Well, I'll have to think about it." and left.

So, that's it. She's going to "think about it" while I stand around hand washing our piles and piles of dirty dishes. Husband says if they don't do anything about it we will just get it repaired on our own and deduct. I'm still hoping that they step up and do their job so we don't have to do that, but I'm not holding my breath.

P.S. I'm betting there are a million typos but I don't have time to edit right now. I have to wash some dishes so I can make dinner. Then I have to wash the dishes again.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

11 Months (and a few days)

How is it possible that I haven't posted in almost two months? I'm thinking blog maintenance isn't my forte. Oh well. Time for a quick update. Little G-Man is not as little as he once was. We are now weeks away from the big O-N-E!!! Crazy, right?

A few stats on the little man:

Weight - about 18lbs almost 19 I think. Hard to say when don't have a special baby scale. Instead I weigh myself (ugh) then I weigh myself again while holding him.

Length/Height - About 30 inches. Pretty hard to be accurate when you have a little wiggle worm flailing all over the changing table.

Grant's latest and greatest adventures:

A Mover & A Shaker! - While Grant still loves crawling like a maniac he is also seriously considering walking. A few weeks ago he tried taking a step and had a few wipeouts. Ever since then he's been pretty hesitant. He pulls himself up, get into position and then stands there carefully considering whether or not he should attempt it. Usually he sits back down and crawls to his destination.

Talking - He talks up a storm. He says, Mama, Dada, Go, Hi, I did it, I got it, and All done. I also think he may have said Bye and possibly Thank you. It's kind of hard to tell though since he mixes the real stuff in with a lot of nonsense.

Teeth - He has four teeth that are completely in and three more that are working their way through. This means the teething monster has hit us hard. We are dealing. We are all dealing. Also, this coming Wednesday will mark G's first visit to the dentist. What they plan on doing with my 11 month old and his almost seven teeth I have no idea, but they say you should bring your little one to the dentist either by the first tooth or by the first year. Many general practice dentists say you can wait until age two or three but most pediatric dentists say that by that age most kids will have cavities.

Sleep - Honestly? We're in sleep heaven. Writing that means I'll probably jinx myself, but for the last couple of months G has slept between 10-13 hours every night. He very rarely wakes up and usually if he does he goes back down on his own. With the teething G has started waking a little early, around 6:00 or so so I usually nurse him in our bed for a little while and then if he still seems tired I'll put him back in his crib and he'll sleep until 8:00 or 9:00. As for naps, he was taking three regular naps a day but I think as of this week he is transitioning to two slightly longer naps, which is fine with me.

I am now in the process of planning the little one's first birthday party. Probably just a small family thing but it should be fun none-the-less. I'm pretty sure we're keeping with the whole owl theme (owl pinata anyone?) and have yet to figure out how to feed everyone. Any ideas on food that is gluten-free and also has a vegetarian option?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Chasing Victoria And Her Secret

When I was in sixth grade I really started to notice boys. I'd like to say that it was around then that the boys started noticing me but that would be a lie. Creepy old men wearing scrubs at the Boardwalk "noticed" me (i.e. followed me around and hoped to catch me alone - thank God for vigilant parents) but I'm pretty sure that to the boys my age I was invisible. Case in point: one sunny afternoon during recess, after having confessed my love for Timothy to my group of friends, several of them decided it would be a good idea to go interrupt his game of flag football to tell him I liked him and to see if he liked me in return. I stood, utterly embarrassed but oh so curious, and waited for his response. My friends came running back to me moments later and a girl who I later found out wasn't really my friend, gleefully informed me that he thought I was "a dog." Not wanting to look like a total loser in front of my friends, I sucked it up and said something to the effect of "whatever, I didn't really like him anyway." Way to save face.

As much as I hate to say it, this was one of many defining moments in my life. A little bit of my innocence melted away in that moment. You know, the part of you that was blissfully unaware that you aren't actually perfect like your parents (if they were good ones) told you. Not only did this boy reject me, he attacked my appearance, most likely in an effort to look cool in front of his friends. From that point on my eye became more and more critical. It wasn't until I was fifteen that I started to think that maybe this boy (and few jerks after him) might be wrong. Interestingly my change of attitude had to do with another boy. (Possibly a completely separate post on why boys have so much influence over us and how to make sure my son doesn't abuse that power). He was an older boy. My brother's best friend to be more exact. It was all very innocent, in fact I'm betting he has no idea the impact this moment had on me. We were standing in my kitchen where someone had posted an ad for an open casting call for models and actors on the refrigerator. He looked at it and said, "Are you going to do this?" I told him I probably wasn't. Then he flashed his smile at me (that kind of Johnny Depp, makes every woman melt smile) and told me I should do it. That was it. He, in a roundabout way, told me I was pretty and I'm sorry but if Johnny Depp told you you were pretty there's no way that wouldn't make your fifteen-year-old self feel beyond good.

I would love to say that from there on out my confidence was sky high and I never had a moment of insecurity after but again, that would be a lie. I live in a culture of self-loathing, especially for women. No matter what we do we aren't tall enough, thin enough, curvy enough, straight enough, blonde enough, perky enough. We're just not enough. Fortunately, due to a lot of great people around me I've been able to experience great moments of self-confidence. People who not only think I'm beautiful but also find value in me beyond my looks, imagine that! Every now and then, however, that moment of self-doubt creeps back in. "Am I pretty? Do I look fat? Am I in fact a dog??"

As a new mom I've been struggling more and more with my overall appearance. Things just aren't looking the way I want them to. My husband tells me I am beautiful. My son clearly adores me. But when I look in the mirror all I see are the bags under my eyes, the chubby tummy that won't go away, the thighs that now touch, the hips that go on forever, and the slightly saggy boobs. Not to mention the bad skin, the crooked teeth, should I go on? Where does all this self-loathing come from? I blame her:

and her:

and all of them:

(I'm kidding - sort of)

I also blame my own inability to control negative thinking. Most days I am too tired to really care what I look like, but sometimes I long to be one of those girls. You know the ones? Think little stick-like thighs, perky butts and breasts, perfectly straight white teeth, no hips, perfect skin. Or at the very least I want this:

Yes, that's me... a pre-baby, heavily made up, very photoshopped, glittery version anyway.

But most days this is what I see instead:

*In case you don't see what I do (because you're not warped)... note the quadruple chin, the bags and circles under my eyes (double score!), the excessively gummy smile and the crooked teeth. Oh and my nose. I'm not a fan.

See what I mean about negative thinking? It's out of control. When will I (and probably most of the women I know) put an end to the body/appearance bashing? When will I be able to look at that picture and see one happy mama and her adorable baby? When will I be good enough for me? When will you be good enough for you? When will I stop chasing the fantasy version of myself and realize I'm perfectly imperfect the way I am?

**I should note that a lot of this post was inspired by the look Husband gave me when I gave my critique of the the second picture of myself. As I wrapped up with some sort of ridiculous statement about how I looked like a hideous monster (yes, sometimes I'm crazy) he just looked at me like I had lost my marbles, laughed and told me I was beautiful and them seamlessly went back to feeding our baby. I hope some day I will always see what he sees.

***Also, I am in no way fishing for compliments here. I know you all love me (those of you that I actually know) and think I'm pretty. I do too, most days. :) I'm just hoping for a time when I think that every day.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Shopping Like a Mom

Many moons ago when my now seventeen-year-old niece was just a chubby little baby I remember her mom (my like-a-sister-sister-in/out-law) doing something I swore I would never do. She bought clothes... without trying them on. Oh the horror! At twelve or thirteen years old I clearly remember thinking this was a beyond wasteful activity (sorry J!). How often do you experience trying something on in the store only to find you don't really like it once you get home? If you don't even try the clothes on the chances of this happening greatly increases. You are almost guaranteed to be making a return trip to the store with your unwanted merchandise or just tossing the item to the back of your closet never to be seen again. Surely she could see this. Surely it mattered!!

Sixteen plus years later I sit here ready to confess: I buy clothes... without trying them on. (*gasp!*) Not only that, I do it on a regular basis. Don't get me wrong, I still occasionally put in the effort to try things on, but only to get a general idea of how the sizing works in that particular brand. Once I know I'm not a medium but am in fact a large (WTF? No seriously What. The. Fuck??) I can just go from there and buy without trying.

Why do I do this, you ask? Well let me paint you a little picture... I live in a small little beach town where everything is little, the parking lots are little, the shopping centers are little, the stores are little with little aisles and the dressing rooms are tiny. Impossibly small. No problem right? It's not like I'm a giant. And my baby? Well he's only 28.5 inches (inches not feet!) so how could that pose a problem? Well in case you don't know, babies come with an enormous amount of gear, gear that is in itself enormous. Enormous diaper bags, enormous carriers, enormous strollers... you get the idea. This makes trips to anywhere but big box stores completely impossible. Shall I remind you of my first experience trying to get Starbucks with G-Man in the stroller? Or how about the time I tried to find non-mom jeans while G cried hysterically in the changing room?

So, since I would like to start buying my clothes from places that don't also sell toilet paper, I decided to start taking G in the Beco carrier while I shopped. No stupid ladies cutting in front of you, hands are free to pick up items and I don't have to try to figure out how to cram an enormous stroller into a minuscule dressing room. Genius right? Yeah, except for the part where you have a kid strapped to you, which pretty much makes taking your clothes off (a necessary part of trying on new clothes) impossible. Luckily my town is so impossibly tiny that the only department store we have is Macys and since I'm not really a $200 pair of jeans kind of girl the desire to go shopping has been limited. That is until they put in a Forever 21 (Don't judge! Just because I'm 29 doesn't mean I can't shop there too.). My little town was finally getting with the times. My first trip there was kind of rough because I had to do the whole stroller thing in order to try on a few items. There were many glares and generally snooty looks from all the teenyboppers that pretty much made me want to run right out of the store. That and the ridiculously loud music. (When did I get old?)

BUT! The next day, Monday, I returned because I wasn't able to go to the top floor due to the fact that their elevator was broken and I had my darn stroller with me. With G strapped into his Beco I found a whole new world; softer music, fixed elevators and the best part... about fifteen other moms all with strollers and similar carriers. I casually perused the merchandise, picked out tops with lace and "skinny" jeans (if we call them skinny does that in fact make me skinny? I hope so.) and then when G-Man started to protest (as men inevitably do while shopping) I marched straight over to the register and paid. I returned home, a bag of new clothes and put my little darling to bed. As he snoozed I had a quick little fashion show in my room. The stuff that didn't fit? It was exchanged on our next trip to the mall. No big deal. Turns out my wonderful like-a-sister-sister-in/out-law had it right all along. :)

***As a slightly random aside I will leave you with this... Trader Joes parking lots suck ass! I have never ever been to one and found a spot to park in under five minutes. Today, as my baby cried I circled the lot for twenty minutes when I finally saw a car pulling out. I got as close as I could and put my turn signal on to indicate to the world that it was in fact MY spot. Then, just as I was about to pull in two teenage girls, driving a BMW with a pink feather boa and tiaras in the back window swooped in and stole my spot. The entire scene was caught on tape, complete with my reaction. Check it out:

I kid! I kid! But that did happen in my head. Towanda!

Friday, April 8, 2011

9 Months (and a couple of days)

As it turns out, maintaining a blog while having a baby is difficult, or at least more difficult than it was when I was confined to the couch during bed rest. It is especially hard to find the motivation to blog when I have the convenience of updating family and friends in short little blurbs via Facebook. What could be easier than quickly sitting down and writing out a short message about G's latest adventures? Easy-peasy. But coming up with things to actually write about in detail on my blog? Not so much. I don't know about you, but my favorite kind of blog tends to be one that is well thought out and has a little meat to it, so I tend to not bother with the short little quips that pop into my head. Because of that, also my lack of sleep and general lack of time (I'm pretty sure Husband wouldn't agree that taking time to blog should take priority over something like the mountain of laundry piling up in our room) I tend to neglect my blog which means you may have missed a few thing in little G-Man's life. So let's take a few minutes to update. If you know me in my Facebook life, or even better - in my real life, then this is probably going to be a bit repetitive for you. Oh well. You'll live.

Here we go... 9 Months!! What in the world?? How did we get here so fast? G-Man has officially spent more of his little life outside of me than he did inside. **tear** He's growing up so fast. We just got back from the pediatrician and these are his stats:

Weight - 17lbs 14oz (10th percentile) Skinny mini! The pediatrician says not to worry, that at this age it's quite common because they increase their activity and are burning a lot of calories. At this point he nurses every three hours during the day, has solids 3 times a day as well as snacks so the boy isn't in want of food.

Height - 28.5 inches His height seems to be tapering of a bit, at his 6-month appointment he was in the 96th percentile and now he down to the 50th or at least that's what the doctor's chart said. When we go to my mom's group he's one of the tallest babies there. He's also one of the youngest.

Head - 46.3cm A large melon just like his Daddy and Mama.

Things he's been up to lately:

Crawling crawling and more crawling! For a while there he was doing this crazy army crawl where he kind of just flailed around the room. I was starting to think he would never do a "normal" crawl but then one night while we were visiting the grandparents a couple of months ago, he just did it. Within the next couple of weeks he had a burst of developments, crawling on hands and knees, pulling up to standing, cruising around his play yard and crib, and standing on his own (he's only done this a couple of time and he can't stand for very long without collapsing).

Talking talking talking! Of course there are all of the normal baby babbles, the ones you have no idea what they mean, but then there are the real words too. In his current repertoire: Mama, Dada, Hi and maybe Bye-Bye. He loves to scream "Hi Dada!" when Husband gets home from work and periodically throughout the day he will say "Bye-bye Mama" not really sure what he's trying to tell me with that one. Then there is the swearing. Despite my best efforts, we haven't quite cut all the swearing out, although Husband's way worse than me! ;P The other day I was feeding G and he quite clearly said "damn" the "gah damn" and then just for good measure "damn" again. I guess we won't be winning parents of the year any time soon.

Teeth! He has four of them. The bottom two came in with relatively no problem. He did have a little (----------- WARNING --------- TMI ALERT!!! ----------) diarrhea which caused quite the diaper rash, but other than that there was minimal fussing. Then about a month or so later the top left one came in, again not a lot of problems, some runny nose issues and a low-grade fever but he got over it quickly. Then his top right tooth started to make an appearance and that hasn't gone as smoothly. Luckily the teething didn't start until after we had already done the sleep training (see previous post) otherwise we wouldn't have been able to do it. There has been a lot of screaming and fussyness. He wants to nurse constantly and chew on everything. For a while there the gums looked pretty raw and red, but I think it's mostly in now so the worst (of that tooth) is over.

Sleep - for details see my last post. We had yet another night of sleeping twelve hours straight. Woooooohoooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sharing - He just (within the last few days) started offering his toys and food to people. Mostly to Daddy, not so much to me.

Things he loves:

Sophie the giraffe - a teething toy
His activity table - he loves to stand next to it and push all the buttons, he also enjoys crawling under it, but he might cry if he feels trapped.
His lovies - one is a little mini-blanket with this dog head attached to the corner. Don't know how else to describe it. The other is his glow worm.
Books - He loves to be read to, to help turn the pages, try to sneak peaks at the next page before we're ready to turn them and of course he loves to chew on them.
Baths - he now sits up in the tub like a big boy and plays with his toys, he also loves to lie down and splash like a maniac.
Being tickled - his inner thighs, his tummy, his neck, his back - pretty much everywhere.
Food - Mum Mums, Yogurt melts, rice cakes, sweet potatoes, most fruits, chicken, pasta, avocado, but he's pretty much not a fan of veggies. We're working on that.

Milestones we're still waiting on:

Standing on his own for an extended period of time.
Clapping his hands - he loves it when other people clap but hasn't quite figured it out.
Waving - he kinda/sorta did it once, but he definitely doesn't do it regularly.

That's all I can think of for now. Hopefully it won't take several months for me to think of a new blog post. :)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I'll Have a Full Night's Sleep With a Heaping Side of Guilt Please

I've been trying to work this post out in my head for a couple of days, but have been having trouble finding the right way to approach it. Matter-of-factly? Humorously? Heavily laden with guilt? I don't know. How do you describe doing something as a mother that you never thought you would do? How do you describe putting your child in the crib and walking away while they scream for you, without looking like a monster? Although I haven't quite figured out how to approach it, I'm going to try my best to talk about what we've been going through for the last few days. Perhaps someone, somewhere will benefit. Bear with me.

In case you are just tuning in, a little back story: G is (was) a terrible sleeper. That's pretty much it.

Oh, you want more? OK. Well picture this: Eight and a half months of fighting to get your baby to sleep. Eight and a half months of having no longer than two hours of sleep at a time (two hours of sleep being a good night). At his worst, it was taking over two hours to get my little man to sleep at night. Two hours of patting, rocking, shooshing and nursing. In fact, some nights I ended up nursing him so much that he would spit up from being so full. Finally after two hours of nursing, spitting up, nursing again, screaming, rocking, bouncing, etc. he would allow me to place him in his crib. Heart pounding from fear, I would gently lower him into the depths of his crib, stand for twenty minutes, on the tips of my toes, bent down with my hands on his chest. Only then could I even think about ever so slowly sneaking away.

So what? Everyone knows it's hard to get a baby to sleep, right? If that's all I had to endure then this wouldn't even be a blog post, but that's not where it ended. Between fifteen and thirty minutes after stealthily sneaking out of his room the wailing would begin. Back to the room I would go, rock, nurse, shoosh, repeat. If I was very very lucky he would then sleep for an hour in his crib, mind you, only if I was lucky. On such a lucky night, Husband and I would wearily crawl into our beds and pray for rest. (No really, I think I actually petitioned to God on a nightly basis for my baby to sleep - death and famine all over the world? Sure, but could you also make my baby sleep? Please??) Like clockwork, an hour later G-Man came a-callin'. Have you ever noticed if you wake up at the wrong time in your sleep cycle it almost physically hurts to move? Well inevitably that's right where I would be when the little man would begin calling to me to from the other room. In a sleepy haze, I would drag myself to the other room, pluck him from his crib and as quickly as possible slip us both back into bed where he would happily nurse to sleep. Eventually he would fall off of me and I could adjust and fall asleep myself. Then... thirty minutes to an hour later I would feel a slap on the face, or a kick to the stomach and scream in my ear. Having not even bothered to *ehem* put myself away, I would quickly pop the boob back in and off to lala land we would go. This lovely pattern would then repeat all night long, every thirty to sixty minutes until we woke up for the day. Some nights I would just pray for morning to come because being awake had to be better than that.

For months Husband has been trying to persuade me to let G cry it out (CIO) but every fiber of my being told me it was wrong. Leaving your child to cry himself to sleep? How cruel and unfeeling can you be? Instead I read every book I could get my hands on, on how to get a baby to sleep gently. The No Cry Sleep Solution, Good Night Sleep Tight, Nighttime Parenting, Attachment Parenting, on and on. While some of the books offered up some useful tools nothing really worked. At Husband's insistence I believe I did try CIO one night (see blog post from a couple months ago) and he just kept crying and crying and crying. He cried so hard that he spit up/threw up all over himself. Eventually, nerves completely shot, I rescued my baby from his crib of torture and swore never again. Lesson learned. Never swear.

After eight and a half months of sleep deprivation (an actual form of torture) I decided to research this whole cry it out business. I grabbed Ferber's book Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems and decided that perhaps he wasn't really the devil like everyone thinks he is. Perhaps a man who is the director at the Center For Pediatric Sleep Disorders and has taught at Harvard might actually have something of value to say about how to get my child to sleep. Maybe he knows something I (and many other mothers) don't. Maybe... With Husband's support, I decided to give it a try. I committed to three nights and if it didn't work we would quit. I could take three nights of crying and I was feeling pretty sure that three nights wouldn't turn my sweet baby into some sort of serial killer. Right?? And so it began.

Night 1: This night was kind of a mishmash of two techniques: Kim West's Sleep Lady Shuffle, followed by Ferber's CIO. After our regular bedtime routine of bath, pajamas, stories and one last nursing session I started with the Shuffle which involved sitting by the crib and gently soothing him from there. After about an hour of him thinking I was in there to play with him I fully submitted myself to CIO. I gently helped him lie down one last time, gave him his lovey, turned on his noise machine and walked away. The screaming began. At this point I wanted to make sure that he knew he wasn't alone so after five minutes I went back in. I didn't talk to him but instead shooshed him, patted his belly and gave him his discarded lovey. Once calm, I left. More screaming. This time I stretched my time away to ten minutes. Once again I went and soothed him without picking him up or talking to him. Once sufficiently calm I left the room. He immediately started crying and I started watching the clock again, waiting for the next ten minutes to pass (a little secret - wine helps). Again I made my way back into his room. I believe he was pretty hysterical at this point and it took a long time to calm him down, but I could see he was winding down. He desperately wanted to sleep he just couldn't quite figure out how. When I put my hands on his chest his eyes would start to droop but they immediately popped open when he realized he was falling asleep. Again I left and this time I stretched the interval to fifteen minutes. This went on for about an hour before he finally gave in and fell asleep.

I would love to say that that was it and he then miraculously slept through the night blah blah blah. No such luck. He woke up an hour later and I had to do it all again, but this time it only took twenty minutes. After which he slept for four whole hours. That night he woke up once and we had to do the CIO process again for about forty-five minutes. Then, after that he woke two more times but miraculously put himself back to bed within a matter of minutes. Overall the night was very difficult. After he first fell asleep I cried. I mean I really cried. Like sobs in the bathroom so Husband wouldn't see/hear. But, the night also had a few successes, like putting himself back to bed. I never in a million years would have imagined that happening on night one. Also, we didn't need to nurse at all. Amazing.

*side note - if you go from nursing all night long to night weaning, remember to pump a couple of times at night. Otherwise you may get some nasty plugged ducts or even worse, mastitis. Lesson learned.

Night 1 v 2.0: Unfortunately the morning after our first night little G-Man woke up very sick. Right then and there I almost gave up, thinking I had broken my baby with the crying. The doctor reassured me that I had done no such thing and that it was purely a coincidence. Unfortunately, due to his illness I couldn't continue the routine that night. Ferber specifically says not to CIO when sick or in pain (teething, ear ache, etc.). So once again G returned to bed with me for a night of marathon nursing. Oh well. The next day however, G was feeling a hundred times better so we started again. Something that I found really helped ease my mind was having a video monitor. At any time during the process I could easily check in on him without disturbing him. I could see for myself that he wasn't crying from pain and that he wasn't throwing up, he was fine. Oh and did I mention the wine? That helped too. Basically this night was just like the first, but a little shorter. I went in after five minutes, then ten, then fifteen and then fifteen again and that was it. He fell asleep. It's interesting watching him learn how to fall asleep on his own. There were a couple of times during his naps that day and that night where he fell asleep sitting up, which if you have any sort of sense of humor is actually kind of comical.

Night 2 (or 3 depending on how you look at it): Again I followed the pattern of stretching out the intervals, but this time I skipped the five minute interval and went straight to ten minutes, then we did a fifteen minute and then a twenty minute interval. It was hard but I could tell it was working. His crying was less intense, more like complaining really. After the last stretch, he quietly put himself down on his tummy, popped his little diaper butt up into the air and fell asleep. That night he woke maybe two times and each time he put himself back to bed. Pure amazingness.

Night 3: We went through our bedtime routine, I nursed him then stood in the dark with him singing until I could feel him relax. I put him in his crib and said "night night" then walked away. He was quiet. Luckily I have a handy dandy video monitor. Turning it on, I found him quietly playing with his glow worm. A few minutes later he let out a little cry and I prepared myself to start up the ten minute timer in my head. But that was it. He cried for maybe a minute and then he was out. For. The. Whole. Night. He slept, completely undisturbed for ten hours.

Since then we have had good nights, followed by amazing nights. In fact, for the last three nights in a row, I have put him in his crib, he fell asleep without crying and he woke up twelve hours later, a happy and well-rested baby. It's like a whole new world. I am like a band new woman and a much better mom because of it. As much as I never wanted to hurt my child by letting him cry, this has been our life saver. I spent the first five or so months of G's life struggling with a mild form of post-partum depression and although I felt like I had been coming out of it the last few months, the sleep issue kept dragging me back. I can't even begin to describe the kind of strain having a non-sleeping child can put on you both mentally and physically. So, while I know that Ferber and CIO is so completely looked down upon (at least in my neck of the woods it is) I know that I did the best thing for me, for my baby and even for my husband and our marriage. Judge if you must, but my baby sleeps through the night and so do I!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

AT&T Wireless... Suck It!!

That's it. After nearly seven years of taking your crap, I have had it! Despite your bad behavior over the years I have defended you to Husband, who wanted to leave you a long time ago. Now I see the error of my ways. Husband was right all along (shh, don't tell him!), as a provider you suck. AT&T Wireless/Cingular, whatever you're calling yourself these days... you can kiss my ass!!!!

It was almost seven years ago that I led Husband (Boyfriend at the time) into a seedy little Cingular store down University Ave. Husband's family was never very technologically advanced - think typewriters and Tandy's used to write school papers, not in the 1980's but the late '90's and early 2000's. So, expecting him to have a cell phone was pretty much out of the question. Until one fateful night, when his train was beyond delayed and my overactive imagination led me down the path of full blown panic attack. Begrudgingly he agreed that it was time to take a step into the 21st century and get a cell phone. Seedy Cell Phone Man did his best to convince Husband that he needed the top of the line phone, but sadly (for Seedy Cell Phone Man) Husband walked out with the most basic phone and plan they had. I didn't care, as long as I could call him when I needed to I was fine.

As time went by, Boyfriend became Husband and our lives were merged. As is tradition, I left my parents' cell phone plan for my husbands. There we were, two cell phone numbers on one plan, united at last. Overall I would say our time with AT&T has been relatively painless with the exception of Husband's monthly tradition of squawking every time we get the bill and the ever unpleasant trips to the store to upgrade our phones, thus binding us to the company for two more years. It seems that it is nearly impossible to set foot in one of their stores unscathed.

Let's start with the fact that almost (note the word "almost" people!) every employee that works at AT&T Wireless seems to be trained in either one of two modes of thought: Dipshit or Asshole. Sometimes you come across that rare sparkly jewel, the one trained both ways, the Diphole (or Assshit, whichever you prefer). The Dipshits are the ones that have clearly memorized a script pertaining to their product, but should you ask them a question that deviates from the script their face goes blank and in a blind panic they frantically scramble for a piece of the script that might apply. Admitting that they don't know? Not possible! The script must have answers. If it doesn't, blame the customer. It's the question/questioner that is faulty, not them. Dipshits.

Then the Assholes. Gotta love the Assholes. You probably know them well. You walk into the store and their smugness almost overtakes you. They are clearly far superior (never mind they work in a cell phone store at the mall) and they will only deem you worthy if you are there to buy the latest and the greatest. So, when you approach them with your Palm Treo from four years ago to inquire about getting the touch screen fixed, their nose instantly wrinkles up in disgust and they suggest throwing it away. When you tell them not to be insane, that it's a perfectly good phone, they tell you to contact Palm because they don't deal with such antiquated technology, all the while practically pushing you out the door as if you are some sort of cell phone leper. Assholes.

Last summer our relationship with AT&T Wireless nearly came to an end when Husband decided it was time to get his free upgrade. At the time I was around 37 weeks pregnant and in that lovely window of about five days when I wasn't on bed rest. Although I wasn't on bed rest, I was huge, uncomfortable and having Braxton Hicks contractions like crazy. The plan was to go in, pick out the cheapest and most basic phone they had, get the free upgrade and leave. What should have been a thirty minute trip to the store ended up taking almost two hours. We walked in and instantly were greeted by a Dipshit. She was all smiles as she recited her script and when Husband tried to interject so as to cut to the chase her poor face went blank. He wants a cheap phone and quickly?? Huh? Never fear, she quickly plastered her smile back on her face then started up the script again, "iPhones, blah blah blah, data plans, blah blah blah..."

Ultimately, we were able to refocus her and she helped guide us over to the dark corner where they keep the cheap, non-data plan phones. Pushing the cobwebs aside Husband quickly picked out a simple flip phone and she guided us back over to the register. She babbled on and on about how it was a free upgrade but we would be incurring various expenses. When questioned about said expenses again the blank expression returned. Being that I had already been on my feet for about twenty minutes, Husband didn't press the issue and handed over his credit card. All smiles she started to ring us up and then put his old SIM card into the new phone. I'll never quite understand what happened next, but somehow Dipshit switched (through the computer system) my SIM card with Husband's so now all my information was on his new phone. Furrowing her brow, Dipshit claimed that it was no problem she just needed to see my phone and she could fix it. Wanting to expedite the matter I handed over my phone. After several more minutes my phone was back safely in my hands and we were that much closer to leaving the store.

As I waited I decided to look through my (antique) phone only to discover that half of my numbers had been erased. When I confronted Dipshit with the problem she tells me that Palms don't have SIM cards (never mind the fact that she just put one in my phone??) so she couldn't have erased it. I insist that half of my numbers are gone and that she fix it. At some point I become so exhausted and frustrated that I find myself sitting on the floor. (Hello, no chairs in the whole freaking store??) After about an hour of her fumbling around and talking to her manager (the Asshole variety) she insists that either the numbers were never there or I deleted them and didn't realize it. Feeling completely pissed off but like I might go into labor if I stay there any longer Husband and I leave. Oh and to top everything off Dipshit also tells me that she accidentally gave my number the free upgrade so if I want to upgrade my phone I'll have to explain the whole situation to the next Dipshit and they'll have to upgrade Husband's account which will really be my account. Huh? What?

Not wanting to be hasty and feeling that my pregnancy hormones might just be getting the better of me, I let that whole situation slide. Until today. I've been wanting to upgrade my phone for a while now. Several months ago the touch screen stopped working which wasn't too much of a problem, but now I'm finding that it also won't hold a charge. So, today, after little G's morning nap, I bundled us both up and made my way over to our local AT&T Wireless store. As I walked in I was instantly greeted by a smiling employee. Not wanting to judge, I stood there hoping I had encountered a non-Dipshit/Asshole. I explained that I was looking to purchase a new phone and he quickly led me over to his computer to check our account information. Slowly he started to reveal his Dipshit training. Trouble turning on the computer? Check. Trouble navigating the computer system? Check. Eventually he took my cell phone information and accessed my account information. I stood their waiting, mentally preparing myself to explain the debacle from last summer (my account was accidentally upgraded blah blah blah), but instead he stops and gives me this look. That smug Asshole look. What is this? Can it be? Have I encountered the rare Diphole? Indeed I had. Diphole wrinkles up his nose and in an unbelievable condescending tone tells me that I am not authorized to make changes to the account including upgrading my own phone. Completely shocked, I said, "Seriously?" With a little laugh he mockingly replied, "Yes, seriously." He went on to explain that if my husband wanted to he could call and grant me authorization. Or if he didn't want to do it over the phone, Husband could escort me to the store and help me buy the phone there. Feeling completely talked down to, I informed him that I was his wife not his child and I should not need him to grant me authorization. "All it takes is ten minutes on the phone ma'am." I refrained from telling him that my husband was in an all day mediation and didn't have ten minutes to deal with this nonsense as he had assumed that I was a grown woman who could upgrade her own freaking phone. I also refrained from telling him that I would be glad to walk to the other end of the mall and visit a little store called Verizon.

Thus, I suspect my relationship with AT&T Wireless will be coming to an end. Unfortunately Husband is at the start of a two-year contract with them, but that doesn't mean I can't move on!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Oh What A Morning!

*WARNING - this is about poop*

It's 9:00am. How many of you have been pooped and peed on? More than once? No one? So that's just me I guess. Awesome.

The night after G was born Husband and I had the pleasure of experiencing our first midnight diaper change. I remember it well. Little wrinkly newborn G started his pathetic little cry from the bassinet next to my hospital bed. Husband, being a man of action decided it was time for a diaper change. We slowly unwrapped his hospital blanket like he was a delicate present. Husband then gently began the process of opening the diaper, careful not to bump the umbilical cord area. We were in luck, just a little pee in the diaper. As husband began to lift little G's bottom to take the dirty diaper away it happened. Like the La Brea Tar Pits, thick black poo began to ooze out of our sweet delicate baby. It flowed and flowed. Quickly we grabbed cloths to wipe it up, thick black tar-like poop was everywhere. Thankfully the flow eventually stopped. In a midnight stupor we cleaned up the mess and returned our now clean sweet boy to his bassinet where if memory serves, he did not sleep. Somehow I have since managed to avoid much contact with my little man's poop. Sure I have changed the dirty diapers but usually they are already dirty and all I have to do is take them away. Actually watching it come out and subsequently getting it everywhere has been limited to that one night in the hospital. Until today.

Last Thursday my little guy finally cut his first tooth. It was kind of surprising because he really wasn't exhibiting many symptoms. Other than the drooling and chomping he had been doing for the past three months nothing had changed, he was as happy as can be. Wednesday night we went to bed, no teeth. Then, Thursday morning as he was chomping away on my hand I felt something sharp. Sure enough there was a little tooth beginning to poke through his lower gums. I was sure that would be the beginning of a crazy fussy baby, but magically he stayed in good spirits. Then on Sunday I noticed a change. Although he was still a pretty happy baby I noticed his tolerance for things had gone down considerably. When he was done playing on the floor, he was done. If I didn't get him, complete and utter meltdown. He also started having diarrhea. It's really hard to tell when a baby has this but it seemed pretty watery and he ended up going to the bathroom (can you say that about babies since they don't go to the actual bathroom to do their business?) 4 or 5 times that day, way out of the norm for him. It was the same yesterday. More fussiness and diaper changes about 7 times. As a side effect G developed quite the little red/raw bottom.

Hoping that it was just teething making my poor baby feel bad I put him to bed. This morning as he slept beside me, he began to make these terrible grunting noises and started thrashing back and forth. That's when I heard it, a blowout of epic proportions. Quickly I removed his sleepsuit and rushed him to the changing table. Sure enough more diarrhea. I cleaned him up and decided I should probably call the doctor. Wanting to be thorough I decided to take his temperature. As the thermometer started to take the reading I heard a little "pop" and looked down just in time to see poop flying out, all over the thermometer, the table and my hand. Now if you know me, you know that I'm relatively squeamish. Believe it or not I don't actually enjoy talking about poop, much less having it all over my hand. However, I remained calm and quickly cleaned up the mess and attempted to take his temperature again. More poop. Just as I got him clean for the second time and began to aim the thermometer back at my target (I was determined to get a reading) a small stream of pee began to shoot up into the air. Somehow I managed to avoid the tiny spray and I continued on with my mission. This time he peed again, more forcefully, I tried to block the stream with my hand but before I could he shot himself in the eye. UGH! Then, I kid you not, as I was wiping off his face he pooped again. WTF??? After all of that I finally got his temperature, 99.9. Normal for him is usually around 98.1 but the pediatrician has already informed me that they don't care about temperatures unless they are over 100.

After sanitizing the baby and his room little G played on the floor like all was right in the world. He chomped away on his Sophie the giraffe quite gleefully as I scrubbed my hands and arms with antibacterial soap. Thankfully he is now napping while I decide what to do about his diarrhea. Do I chalk it up to teething or put in a call to the pediatrician only to have them tell me it's normal? Decisions decisions.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Ball Twisting.

Yep, you read that right. I considered titling this something else, but all my poor little sleep deprived mind could come up with was "Ball Twisting." So there you have it... Perhaps now is a good time to put a little reminder out there of the disclaimer I gave when I first started this blog before I continue with this particular entry. I will say that it is unlikely I will be discussing those same exact words, as I am no longer pregnant, but I will be using other just as unpleasant ones. I mean come on, I have a baby who (gasp!) poops and let me tell you, does it stink now that we've introduced solids. He also pees! Sometime in the tub! (shock and awe!) Then there's me. Yep. You guessed it. I still have a uterus. Does it have a baby in it? God I hope not! It does, however still present me with some problems. Problems that have been giving me trouble since the dawn of time, or more accurately since I was twelve. If you don't want to hear about poop and pee, or God forbid my uterus, I feel compelled to remind you, this is not the blog for you. Turn back now. Do not proceed. Scroll down at your own risk.

With that out of the way... In an effort to bring myself out of the postpartum funk I've found myself in, I've been trying to take better care of myself. As cliche as it sounds, if I'm not taking care of myself then I'm not going to be able to take care of my baby, right? Sooo, I've been forcing myself to eat breakfast every day, I've been making sure I don't spend every day in my pajamas, little G-Man and I have been going on walks almost daily and I've been trying to make other mommy friends (for the love of God why is that so hard??).

Today, after forcing a bowl of cottage cheese and fresh pineapple down, I put the little one down for a nap, waited for Husband to come home and I went off to get a filling. Apparently taking care of my teeth after having G was also low on the list of priorities and now I must pay. At least I got a little adventure away from the couch. After spending some time in the torture chair I came home, tagged Husband (you're it!) who trotted off back to work, and I resumed caring for the little stinker. Who as it turned out was quite literally a stinker. After changing a near blowout (a "poosplosion" as they're known around here) I decided to take G for our afternoon walk. Walks around here are usually pretty uneventful. I live in a small little community where the road conveniently goes in a circle so I can do "laps." As we make our way around my mind begins to wander. Today it went something like this: Who lives in that house? What outfit should I wear tomorrow? What outfit should G wear tomorrow? If G bites me with his new tooth, how bad will it hurt? What will I do if/when he bites me? Gee this stroller sucks. I should get a jogging stroller. Who am I kidding? I don't jog! Ow that hurts. Did those old ladies just lap me? Wait, what? What the hell is that pain? Shit. That pain feels familiar. Yes they did lap me!! Better pick up the pace. Damn. There's that pain again. It's baaa-aack!

And with that we returned home. For those that don't know the story, I'll try to give a brief back story. Painful (like passing out, puking, need a shot of whiskey painful) and heavy periods since forever. Countless doctors, many of whom laughed me out of their offices, and years of taking over-the-counter and prescription (don't worry not the addictive kind!) pain pills during that time of the month. Finally saw an OB who listened, Dr. M, and was willing to take action. In the summer of '09, after countless ultrasounds and endless debating I went in for an exploratory laparoscopy. Dr. M. warned me repeatedly that they might not find a source for my pain but I figured it was worth taking a look. At that point extensive walking and sometimes just getting up off of the couch caused a shooting/stabbing, take-your-breath-away pain in my pelvic area. Although they had found cysts on my ovaries through ultrasounds, she didn't think that was the cause, so she decided to take a deeper look.

That day my wonderful parents drove down to be with Husband and me as I went in for the procedure. Since I was out like a light I don't really remember much about that day except for the excruciating pain as Husband and my Dad helped carry me up the stairs to our apartment. As I understand it, the procedure took a little longer than Dr. M had originally anticipated. Lo and behold, not only did she find a source for my pain, she actually found a couple of sources. The first being what I already expected, Stage II Endometriosis. Then the unexpected news... buried somewhere under or around my intestines was a relatively large (about the size of a small egg I believe) subserosal pedunculated fibroid tumor. For those that don't care to follow the link I will rely on the words of the wonderful Dr. M. Apparently as she was telling my parents and Husband about her findings she explained that the fibroid was one that was growing on the outside of my uterus. This kind of fibroid is attached to a stalk rather than growing on/in the lining of the uterus. When the stalk twists it can cause pain. Feeling that her words weren't carrying enough weight she continued. (Paraphrasing here) It would be like if every time you sneezed or got up from the couch someone grabbed your balls and twisted them. Apparently the look on Husband's and Dad's faces was priceless. Too bad I was zonked out in the recovery room, I would I have like to have been there.

So, here I sit today, that nasty tumor was removed but I am left wondering if I have a new little friend growing. As I took my walk I felt some familiar twinges. They're not quite at the "ball-twisting" stage yet, so I'm hesitant to call the doctor. I was hoping to make it a full year without seeing her. A full year without medical problems. Of course if the ball-twisting worsens I suppose I'll be forced back to her office. Until then, anyone have any good jogging stroller recommendations? I can't be letting those old ladies lap me any more.