Friday, October 30, 2009

Things I have learned

I am a mental sew-er (not sewer but a person who sews.) What I mean by that is in my mind, I think about a project and I can envision how to do it PERFECTLY. I can see every step and it is all very logical. And then I try to do it. And this is what happens.

First the bobbin tension was way off and left me with a mess of thread on every surface.

Second -- measure twice, cut once, folks. I'll just say that again after you see Halloween costume #1.

Measure twice, cut once.

So Maddie was a Future Mountie (i.e. Mount St. Mary student) for Halloween Part 1. Much like todays students, she wore her uniform skirt way too short, and rolled. And I've already been told by Sr. Carol Anne that she expects to see Maddie in her office on a regular basis. I've also been told tuition is due on Monday, so I'll get right on that.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The Fun Never Ends

This weekend Maddie mastered the art of blowing raspberries, but that hasn't stopped her from practicing. Now when I pick her up, her shirt is always wet from all the blown spit. But the best thing ever?

Tonight I put her down in her crib totally sound asleep. She tossed her head back and forth and then proceeded to blow a raspberry in her sleep.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mad Skills

It will come as no surprise to some of you that I am incredibly talented -- not because I demonstrate my skills but because I tell you all the time. But let me fill you in on this insane skill. We have this formula mixer. It rocks (Thanks, Jeannie!)

I am unspeakably, inexplicably able to stop the water at 24 ounces every single time. And yes, the pitcher holds something like 30 ounces with only small clear hatch marks up the side to indicate where 24 ounces is.

I can even do this without looking. Are you jealous?

Even I'm jealous.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Squishy Squash

You may have noted from my last blog that Maddie now has a high chair -- and she eats food! Or stuff that we convince babies is food but seriously have you tasted it? It's not really food. Ick.

Maddie now eats rice cereal and this week she got to try squash. Rice cereal got an instant ick look and then a pause as she reconsidered. And then at last she nodded her head as if she was a wine connoisseur impressed with a magnificent vintage. But, this is not a neat girl -- she has been sticking out her tongue as soon as food comes near, resulting in a dramatic mess.

We added in squash and she loved it! Or at least that's what I gather since she keeps her mouth open the whole time and if I'm not fast enough with the spoon, she wipes her face with her hand and then licks it. Apparently her love for squash taught her how to eat because she has started to chew the spoon and thereby keep most of the food in her mouth.

Messy pictures soon to come! Their all on Rob's cell phone, along with some stellar other photos, and he hasn't uploaded for a while.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

This blog is for you...

This blog is going out to all the people that I never get to talk to anymore -- like Melisa! Holla! So Maddie still has nap issues (and yes I am reading a book about it). The Cry-it-out system just wasn't for me -- not just because it's painful (to me, mostly) but also because Maddie gets so worked up there's no chance it will work anytime soon. OUr main problem is that she does not like to take an afternoon nap, and gets really cranky without one. She won't sleep in her crib for that nap. I pretty much grab her as soon as she starts looking sleepy and put her down next to me on the couch. Sometimes it takes a little bit of coaxing, but usually a nap will happen. Sometimes short, sometimes long. And she's easily interrupted, so I pretty much don't move or speak during that time.

I haven't posted too many pictures for a while, so feel free to catch up!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Are you choking?

So the other night, Rob was in the bedroom changing Maddie and I was sitting in the living. I started coughing uncontrollably and Rob yelled out, "Are you ok??" He then ran to check on me and see if I was choking.

Monday, October 12, 2009

My New Life

My sister-in-law recently commented on how different her life is now and it got me thinking about the drastic changes in my own life. I thought I would look back in my blog and see what I was doing two years ago today. But apparently, two years ago today I was sitting in my Chicago apartment NOT blogging, probably internet stalking other people's blogs, thinking "Blogging is cool. I should get one of those blog things." Or I was taking the stupid L downtown to my office, a pretty new concept for me at the time since I had worked in the suburbs FORever! Or I could possibly have been at a playoff game?? Rob will correct me if I'm wrong here.

So then last year on this date (I did not blog but I remember exactly what I was doing!) I found out I was pregnant. We kept it secret for quite a while, hence I didn't blog for a few weeks -- I'm no good at keeping secrets from you Blogger! That same weekend we moved into a lovely apartment that I swiftly realized would be the bane of my existence. Previously we had been staying at the cottage, a fun respite but getting cold. I was still working for my Chicago job, just from home -- and of course the bad economy meant some serious changes were in the works.

Let's just take a quick peak at today:


We have a beautiful 4-month old girly, who likes to smile and flirt. We live in an awesome apartment that I love!! And for the first time in 7 years, Rob and I both have great jobs that we love -- at the same time. what a difference a few years makes!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Does crying count when it comes to first words?

At our doctor's appointment, I had asked the nurse about Maddie's sleeping problems and she gave me the answer I knew but dreaded. The best solution for Maddie's desire to avoid daytime sleep at all costs is to let her cry it out. She very sweetly offered me all the support she could, telling me that letting her cry it out didn't make me a bad mom, etc...

Given my work schedule, I was a little afraid to try this -- I know stability of schedule is key. But it seems that Maddie is doing better in the morning, and my Mom and Sarah have both been able to put her in her crib and have her sleep at least for a little bit. So I decided to try the cry-it-out technique for the afternoon nap -- her big nap of the day. Yesterday as soon as she started rubbing her eyes, I whisked her off to her crib, got her settled, played her little musical thing (activity thing? whatever that's called?) and then left the room. She babbled for a while and then the music stopped, so she babbled louder. Then she started crying. I followed the nurse's advice and restrained myself but it's pretty gosh-darn hard when your daughter actually cries by screaming "Maaaaaaaaaaa, Maaaaaaaa!" I mean come on, does she do this on purpose?

I managed to hold out for almost an hour. I know it's for her own good, but I just can't do this cold turkey. We're going to have to try to do this a little differently. The new plan is I'm going to try to get Maddie to sleep then put her down in her crib, and when she wakes up (which she will because she only catnaps in her crib) I'm going to let her try to settle herself. In other words as, once that girl gets into the crib she's in there for at least 1 hour. Hopefully, I can do a little better that way. Ugh. Motherhood is rough. I should just "babysit" like her dad does.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

4 Months Old!

Guess who is in the 95 percentile for both weight and height! For those not-yet-moms that means that only 5% of babies are bigger than Maddie. 16 pounds 4 ounces and 25.75 inches long. No wonder my back hurts! And one more set of shots done -- phew.

One Random Thought

The other day, Rob made a comment about something Maddie did "while he was babysitting." I had to point out to him that when he is alone with the baby that's not babysitting, that's called "fatherhood."

Monday, October 5, 2009

More on Sleep and Random Thoughts...

Oh, so none of you wanted to comment on the sleep:complaint ratio? Nobody's brave enough to enter into this discussion, I get it. I made Rob read it and he then shook his head, and said, "Yes, dear. You're absolutely right." Except that's obviously not exactly how it happened, considering he never says "Dear" but I was tired at the time. So the conversation really went over my head -- and we all know that for me to miss a conversation in which the key subject is "I AM RIGHT" is a serious travesty.

That's actually been the theme of my life for the past few days. I preface by saying, this will be a vague discussion -- for reasons I cannot state in the blogosphere -- I have been subjected to a battle of "Am I right? Or am I wrong?" No, it's not Rob. And though I know, I'm a pretty over-confident person and often am exceedingly stubborn, in this instance I am about 95% convinced I am sure. And yet, I have no choice but to let go and allow the other person involved to win. Sigh. The entire situation has been exhausting, frustrating and made me excessively glad to have a lovely family and a fantastic job to think about instead. It's also been an exercise in self-development -- learning to let go, find peace, be graceful not gritty. But exhausting nonetheless.

Speaking of exhausting, poor Maddie is just exhausted by her efforts to never nap. She's done very well this week with my awesome, incredible, brilliant, creative, wonderful friend babysitting her this week. But it's still pretty clear that despite being exhausted, she just hates napping. We have figured out thanks to Grandma, that when she fusses for her nap, we can lay her down on the couch cushion and she will fall asleep a little faster. This does make me a little nervous though because she's about to start rolling, and ugh, the possibilities even with me sitting right here. But hey, whatever works. Last night Maddie fell asleep for the night while having her bottle, so I set her down and the minute her head hit the mattress, she popped her eyes open as big as all the world. There was nothing to read in that facial expression except, "Mom, I'm not tired. Nope, I'm never going to sleep, sleep is stupid, play is fun, come on let's play, I'm never sleeping again!"

But she did sleep, and she sleeps well. And in fact she's sleeping right next to me on the couch. Such a pretty girl.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Gender-Sleep Paradigm

I begin this blog with a preface: As I told you Rob, I hereby assassinate your character in the blogosphere.

So I'm thinking about doing a little psychological study. I've noticed of late that new parenthood seems to trigger in men the need to complain about lack of sleep. I noticed it a while ago, truthfully before my own baby arrived, when my brother kept commenting about how tired he was while his wife never did. But then we had Maddie and the difference between men and women and the need to complain:lack of sleep. Actually I don't need to go into any theories or elaborate descriptions. I'll just provide you with the sleep totals for this weekend:

Friday night:
Rob asleep at 10:00 pm straight through until 5:00 am (7 hours), nap: 7:30 - 12:00 pm (4.5 hours): total sleep 11.5 hours
Alex asleep at 10:00 pm, awake 11:00 pm (1 hour); asleep 1 am, awake 5:00 am to repeatedly kick Rob until awake because crying baby does not wake him (4 hours), asleep by 5:30 am until 7:30 am (2 hours), naps=0 because went to work, grocery shopped and did all kitchen prep work for week, made dinner AND pumpkin bread: total sleep: 7 hours

Last night at 9:59 pm, Rob is being quiet and grouchy. So I say, "What's wrong? Are you mad about something?" And he says, "I'm just tired."

Saturday night:
Rob asleep 10:00 pm to 7:30 am (9.5 hours)
Alex asleep 10:00 pm - 6:00 am (8 hours) Allowed to take nap at 7:30 am, woken up 8:10 am because "I need to take a shower." Truthfully, I wasn't that tired after 8 hours, but I had been thinking about how nice it would be to just crawl back under the covers and certainly I had fallen sound asleep shortly after my head hit the pillow.

To Rob's credit after his shower, he did offer to let me go back to bed. But really the damage was already done. And also to his credit he did thank me for letting him sleep in this morning.

Let's just hope Rob does his math and doesn't complain about being tired any more. And to be clear, men who read this. Complain includes not just words but also mopey, moody, quiet behavior. Sorry, you're just going to have to suck it up like us Moms do, and grow a pair.