Tuesday, May 31, 2011

WIC

First, WTH is up with the weather. Considering the mountain of scientific evidence and the fact that it's cold and raining on May 31st, I do not understand how some people can deny climate change.

Anyway, today the boy child and I went shopping for our WIC goods. The process is frustrating at times, especially since WIC seems to be stuck in the 90s (paper checks? Soooooooooo last century). Also because their nutrition guidelines are just shitty. They need to seriously reevaluate what they give families. Here are some examples.

Juice: we get 128oz of juice a month... per child. That's a outrageous amount of juice. No child needs that much juice in a month. It's like sugar water. All the sweetness of fruit without all of the other healthy bits. The "meat" of fruit is what is best for you. Not the juice. Kids need to be drinking more water and less juice. They should take the juice allotment and up the fruits & veggies you get.

Speaking of fruits & veggies, you get $6 a month. That is stupid-low. Kids need more whole fruits and veggies. Six dollars is barely enough to buy a container of strawberries and a bag of lettuce. It is ridiculous how little the allotment is for actual food.

This brings me to milk. We get two gallons per month. Again, per child. That's FOUR gallons of milk. That's a crazy amount of milk. Why? Because you don't need to drink that much milk. Maybe a glass a day. If you're getting plenty of fruits and veggies, you get plenty of calcium. Leafy greens people, leafy greens. Put down the cow juice and drink some damn water.

"Whole grains": ugh. You get 16oz, which is less than most loafs of bread. We end up with a ton of oatmeal. Which is fine since Penny loves oatmeal, but it's just silly. The way they set it up, most WIC parents I see buy cheap white bread (ew) when they should be encouraging parents to buy whole grain bread for their kids. It's just back-ass wards.

Eggs: maybe some people go through 24 eggs a month. We certainly do not. That's a lot of eggs.

There's more than annoys me, but I'll save it for another post. Time to go make dinner, baked chicken, brown rice, and salad. With water to drink (ok, I will have a glass of wine).

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Location:Home...and wet

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Spray and Wash challenge part 2

So yesterday? Two days ago? I posted the following picture of some stained kids clothes.





All heavily stained that were being treated with Spray and Wash. The worst of the bunch was Griffin's baseball onesie which had three day old tomato sauce stains.

Here they are after being laundered (we use Gain detergent).





While this isn't the best picture, you can see that most of the staining is gone. In fact, the only shirt that needs to be hit with another wash is the aforementioned baseball onesie. Three day old sauce stains are pretty much the Hulk of stains, so I'm not surprised that it needs another round. Overall I'm happy with the effectiveness of the Spray and Wash.

I may be a mom of two, and I may do a lot of laundry, but I am far from a laundry or stain expert. So far my kids don't produce the level or frequency of stains that warrants involvement heavier than the Spray and Wash. And really, I'm pretty lazy, so if something did warrant a major laundry intervention then odds are my kids would be forced to wear the clothing with stains or forced to just toss it. In which case they would probably complain to my mother and she would fix it since she is much more of a domestic goddess than I am.

Wow, what a riveting blog post. Sorry guys.

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Location:Home

Monday, May 23, 2011

Cousins and more pictures

Last year, just a few months after Griffin was born, Bryan's brother, sister in law, and their three kids came out to visit from Wyoming. We had a lot of fun. We went to Fairytale town, the beach, Second Saturday, and the pool. Penelope had a blast with her cousins and we were really excited to see how she and Griffin would interact with them this time around. The twins are 4 and Gadge is 7 so there's a bit of an age difference, but it's not too bad.

We were not disappointed. Penelope adores her cousins and so does Griffin. They had a really great time together. I didn't take nearly as many pictures as I would have liked, but I did get a few.




Griffin (13 months), Jesse (4 years), Kaylen (10 months), Gadge (7 years...going on 13), Penelope (2.5 years), and Arianna (4 years)




Bryan with Gadge and Griffin

Tree (our Sister in Law) was nice enough to keep the kids out of school for two days so we could spend as much time together as possible. It was really nice to spend so much time with our Rodgers cousins :)




Poe, Tree, and Ari

And now for some random pics of the kids.




Griffin and Penelope sharing an apple




Griffin at the Rodgers ranch. We didn't spike his hair, the infamous Wyoming wind did that.

Also? Penelope kept telling me "oh mommy, it's so windy!" or "oh no! The wind!" to which I replied "welcome to Wyoming".




This is her throwing a fit because I wouldn't let her play with the iPad.

And I think that is all for my Wyoming related blogging! I probably missed at least a few things, but that's at least the basics. It was a good, but exhausting trip.

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Location:Home, peacefully

One more Wyoming post

The kids are in bed and I am completely unmotivated to finish laundry. I really should...or I should break out an exercise video, but I won't. Instead I'll post this blog and inundate you all with Wyoming blog posts.

Oh. And I'm now up to 25lbs of weight loss. 15 left!

So let's see...I posted about the Science Zone, the mammoth, cows in road, and the gentleman's club, right? What's left?

Horses! What is a post about Wyoming without a mention of horses?

Dave and Debb have what I consider to be a lot of horses. One is Jill's horse, one is a boarder, and the rest are Debb's (if memory serves that means 3. I'm pretty sure there are 5 total). They also have donkey, George. We went out to the barn everyday to see the horses and George. If the weather had been nicer we may have attempted a ride, but Poe wasn't quite brave enough to pet any of them so I don't know how riding would have gone. I haven't ridden a horse since I was in Girl Scouts. I was pretty decent though, meaning I didn't fall of.

Here are some pics.




This is Debb's show horse whose name I can never remember. I want to call her Sensation, but I think that's the name of Jill's horse. I am terrible with names anyway, but seriously bad with horse names.

This next one is of George. The only reason I remember his name is because he's the only donkey.




He really wanted to see Penelope. She really didn't want to get close.

Here she is in the barn.




She really enjoyed looking at the animals even if she wasn't too keen on hands on interaction. I got to pet the horses though. It was fun to be so close. I do love them even though my biggest equestrian accomplishment is not falling off one.

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Location:Home

Cows!

Saturday (back in Wyoming) we left Casper and headed to Douglas to have dinner at B's grandparent's ranch. Although first we had lunch with Bryan's step brother, his 10 month old son, and Bryan's step sister. It was nice to spend some time with them, and the baby is adorable :) Jill, B's step sister, was nice enough to give up her room while we were in town so Penelope could have a bed to herself. Poe loved sleeping in Aunty Jill's room and constantly commented about how pretty Jill's ribbons are (Jill is an accomplished equestrian).

So lunch was nice. We got to catch up and I know Bryan really enjoyed the one on one time with his siblings.

I had hoped the kids would sleep on the way to the ranch, but alas they I'd not. That's ok, they would have missed this if they had:





Yup, that's right. A road entirely blocked by a herd of cattle. There were three real, live cowboys herding the bunch. Here's a cow close up:




I was driving, so I got to drive through my very first herd.

Oh! That day was the day for animals in the road, as we were leaving Bryan's dads house, some antelope decided it would be an excellent idea to run zig zags across the road.




So we got our fair share of wildlife.

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Location:The couch, at home

I was THAT mom

Traveling means a disruption of schedules. A disruption of schedules means little or no naps and short sleep at night. This translates into one ridiculously fussy toddler. Griffin had his issues as well, but since he's clingy anyway they weren't nearly as pronounced as the problems we encountered with Penelope.

She's ordinarily a crazy-good kid. As in, we get maybe one tantrum a day and it's usually pretty mild with more nuclear tantrums occurring once a week, sometimes more often, but never really frequent. She just has a pretty mellow personality and is easy to redirect. There's no magic parenting involved, we just got lucky.

She's also a creature of habit and needs sleep. She didn't get her normal amount this trip and so was much more difficult to handle. Still, it wasn't too horrible until we got to the airport this morning. I swear to you, it was like my child was possessed. She would.not.stop.screaming. We finally strapped her into a stroller because she refused to go anywhere unless carried and I had Griffin and Bryan was tackling the luggage. So I pushed my screaming, writing toddler through the Denver airport. For over 10 minutes I kid you not. She was thrashing around in the stroller, so much so that I had to push it solely on the back wheels because she would try and stop the stroller by kicking the wheels or putting her feet on the ground. Mind you, she was screaming the entire time and I am not exaggerating in the slightest.

It was awful. People stared, I ignored them (would have liked to see them try to make her stop), and Bryan shot them all dirty looks as he followed behind us with the luggage cart and our 4 carry ons.

Did I mention how terrible it was? She finally calmed down when we got to the check in and Bryan released her from the torture devise and picked her up. She stayed in his arms until security and was then back in his arms until we boarded the plane.

She's in desperate need of a return to our normal schedule. I'm going to put her to bed early tonight and hope that she wakes up mostly back to normal.


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Location:Home, thankfully

The Spray and Wash challenge

So before I post about the ordeal that was the Denver airport (and finish posts about the remainder of the Wyoming trip) I wanted to post the following picture.





I have started trip laundry and, as you can see, there are a few... messy pieces that are in need of washing. I've already sprayed them with Spray and Wash so we'll see how well it works. I'll take after-pictures. Guess I need to start carrying travel sized Spray and Wash with me. Maybe they should send me some.

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Location:Home!!!

Monday morning

So I'm going to work backwards here since we all fell asleep shortly after 8 last night and I didn't have the time to blog about the rest of our stay in Wyoming. Perhaps I'll get time to do that on the plane and post them once we land.

Actually, i'll link to a video in a second, but only because I had the opportunity to upload it to YouTube last night.

But first? It's Monday morning and in a few short hours we will be back home. This vacation has been fun, but it's also been incredibly exhausting. Griffins sleep has been atrocious and we've spent quite a bit of time in the car. So while I'm glad we came out, I'm very glad were going home. I actually downloaded a book on toddler sleep yesterday and started reading it in the car so I'm hoping that a return to our normal schedule, with help from the book, will equal some truly good nights.

All we have left to do this morning is get dressed, pack up, eat, and turn on the rental car (which is covered in mud and animal feces... I'll talk more about that later). Then we'll just hope for no delays and be back in sunny CA by lunch.

Anyway, here's the video I promised. Griffins first attempt at eating spaghetti with a fork.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJHirAaV5qM&sns=em


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Location:Doubletree Hotel, Denver

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The meetup

I know I've mentioned it before, but I have a few friends that I've never met. We met through an online baby group and have remained friends over the past 3 years. We're a pretty diverse bunch: age, politics, religion, education, etc. In fact, one of the few things we have in common is that we're all women and we all have kids who were due in December of 2008.

I've met a few of them, and every time I have the opportunity I try and meet more. I have grand dreams of being the first to meet everyone, but that might not happen. We're hoping to all be able to get together when the kids turn 5 and I really hope that happens.

Anyway, Lissy, Matt, and Zach live in Colorado Springs so they came out today to hang out. We spent an hour or so at the park and then had dinner. It was fun, the kids had a good time and Bryan and enjoyed chatting with Lissy and Matt. We commiserated over temper tantrums and pasta at the Olive Garden. Here are some pictures.





Zach and Penny holding hands on the walk to the park....

















It was a really nice afternoon and a wonderful beak from the car. I have loads more pictures of Wyoming that I will post soon. If the kids fall asleep at a reasonable hour I'll try and do it tonight.

Tomorrow is our flight back, and while we'll miss family & friends out here we'll be very happy to be home. Very happy. I miss our routine, our bed, and I even miss our dog :)


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Location:Doubletree Hotel, Denver

Friday, May 20, 2011

Science Center

There's really not a ton of indoor kids activities in Casper. But there is a Science Center and it's pretty neat. There are a lot of hands on activities for kids and a toddler play area. We went there today with Bryan's brother, sister in law, and their three kids. Oodles of Rodgers!

I didn't take a ton of pictures, but here are Jessie, Ari, and I with the community we built with magnetic pieces.





We also went to the mall today to get the twins their birthday presents and to play in the indoor play area (did I mention that it showers yesterday? And that today Wyoming is the coldest spot in the nation?!?!). Anyway, the kids had fun.











Now we're relaxing at B's dad's house. Penny is down for nap #2 since she's been a beast the last two days. More tantrums and hitting than in a normal week. I think she's just still adjusting to the new environment and a little overwhelmed. She's not really a fan of change. It's been frustrating though, hopefully after this nap she'll settle down. G seems to be adjusting ok, he's more clingy than normal, but I expected that. Hs sleep still sucks and we're going to have to do something about that when we get home. Not sure exactly what, but something must be done.

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Location:Wyoming

The "Gentleman's Club"

So I have a lot to talk about that is trip related, but I wanted to tell you all about Northern Dreams Gentleman's Club in Casper, Wyoming. Why? Because it's the first building you encounter when you exit the freeway to get to my father in laws house. Here it is:



I took this picture while we were driving (I was not driving). Isn't it... Fabulous?

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Location:Wyoming

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Trip journal #1

So I have plans to write a few trips blogs while we're out here, but you know what they say about the best laid plans...

We left early Tuesday and the flight went pretty well. They gave us an extra seat for free (hooray Southwest!) so Griffin was able to handout nhis caraway instead of on my lap. Here he is on the plane:




And here he is sleeping... He only slept for about an hour and I had to nurse him in his seat (not easy) but hey, at least he slept, right?





After we landed we got our luggage and got our rental car... Well, not right away. There was a mix up and, long story short, it got us a free upgrade to a Chevy Traverse which comes with a DVD player in tieback. Super score.

After lunch, we headed to Coors Field to see a Rockies/Giants game. We were all decked out in our Giants gear (complete with sign!) and made it on the jumbo-tron! The kids did great for having no naps (or short) naps and being in a very new and very overwhelming situation. Here are some pictures from the game.












After the game we headed to Bryan's aunt & uncle's house. B's dousing Greg came out for dinner and we had a really nice time hanging out and chatting with them. I made the mistake of having a glass of wine with dinner and it aggravated with what I am pretty sure was altitude sickness... Or at least the start of it. Copious amounts of water, coffee the next morning, and some Tylenol later and I feel better. Although I would love to be able to sleep for a week.

This morning was the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. They had a lot of dinosaur skeletons and Penelope loved it.




We had hoped the museum would tire them out enough to sleep most of the ride to Wyoming but it was not to be. This is where the DVD player in the rental came in handy. So the drive wasn't great, but it could have been worse.

Now the kids are asleep and I'm crossing my fingers they both sleep well. They need it. I need it.

More later I hope. Thankfully my inlaws have wifi.

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Location:Wyoming

Friday, May 13, 2011

Squishy face

Griffin has a very special "look" that he saves for when he's trying to be particularly charming. We call it his squishy face.

It's hard to capture on camera because he reserves it for moments of extreme joy/silliness and for when he's doing some hard-core flirting. It's hilarious and most certainly not nearly as sexy as he thinks it is... Especially when he has food in his mouth.

We went out to dinner tonight since I came home from work, took one look at the kitchen, and gave up. It was just Dennys, nothing fancy. Across from us was a family containing a preteen girl with long brownish hair. Griffin was in love. He was constantly looking back to get a glimpse of her, grinning, hiding his head, and blushing. And flashing her this:




The squishy face.

Nice, right?

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Location:Home

Unnecessary vs. Necessary

As a parent, especially as a first time parent, you get a lot of advise. Much of it is in the form of "you really need to get xyz". There are approximately 1,765,835,000 baby related devices out there are you really don't need most of them. And some people will find some things essential while others will find them useless; a lot of that depends on your parenting style and philosophy and the temperament of your children, among other things. So a lot of the blogs, articles, and free advise from random people at the mall may not reflect what you really need.

But here's what I consider(ed) necessary (aside from things like diapers, carseats, and clothes) and what I found to be really unnecessary; at least this is what works for our family.

Necessary The changing table. Babies can be changed almost anywhere. When they're little you can even change then in your lap. But we have a couch full of static electricity, and constantly bending to change a diaper is a pain... One of the problems of being tall I guess. Also? With changing tables you can strap your wiggly child in so they cannot escape! Genius! It also keeps all your cloth diapers in one convenient location, which I liked. So for us, a changing table really was necessary.

Necessary. Baby carrier. I wore both kids when they were infants and I still wear Griffin, especially when we go out around his nap time. Yeah, he's heavy, but he sleeps and Poe and I aren't stuck at home during morning naps. Baby carriers are also much more compact than strollers (although we still have a stroller). We can nurse in it as well, which means I can push Penelope on the swings and nurse Griffin.

Unnecessary. Nursing covers. I know a lot of women who love their nursing covers. And I don't have a problem with them in theory (although nothing screams "breastfeeding!" more than a nursing cover), but in practice they just don't work for me. I found it really difficult to latch, monitor progress, and relax. In fact, I couldn't relax. I kept having to check to make sure that nothing was blocking Griffin's airways. I was also fiddling with it so much (and Griffin hated it) that it really got in the way and was too distracting for us both. I actually found a way to nurse without a cover that was much more discreet than using a cover ever was. You couldn't tell I was nursing. And now I've gotten to the point where I really don't care if someone can tell if I'm nursing or not. But I know not everyone gets to that level of comfort. When it comes down to it, women should use whatever they need to support nursing.

Unnecessary.Swaddling cloth. Again, I know a lot of women to swear by these. We swaddled Penelope for a few month and swaddled Griffin for about three days. After that it became too much of a pain. He'd wiggle his way out anyway and swaddling didn't help his sleep at all. It does for some babies, and I know some parents who swaddle their 6month olds. Whatever works, right? I wish swaddling had helped G sleep, but alas it was not for us.

Necessary/Unnecessary.The binky. The pacifier (binky) was a lifesaver with Pen. G refused it and prefers to use me as his pacifier. There are pros and cons to using a binky. I know some people hate them... But they're like anything else when it comes to parenting, they're not inherently good or evil and can be used positively and detrimentally. If your four year old is walking around all day and talking with a pacifier in their mouth then it can actually negatively impact their speech. But if your two year old uses it to get to sleep then it's really no big deal. They're not going to pack the binky to take with them to college.

There are probably a hundred more products I could weigh in on (literally), but I'm done doling out unsolicited advise for tonight :)

I have a couple posts planned on childbirth... Some recent debates have ticked me off and I feel the need to sound off. So you can look forward to (or skip over) that post when I get around to writing it.

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Location:Home

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Peer pressure

When the kids are older, I hope they avoid caving to peer pressure on a whole host of issues: drugs, sex, listening to shirty music, etc. But right I wouldn't mind if Penelope was heavily influenced by her peers in one specific area: potty training.

I haven't started any so of serious potty training because she really hasn't been ready and I don't want it to be a battle. I've. Tried a multitude of techniques to get her interested in the potty but they haven't worked. I'm certainly not giving up, but I'm also not pushing it. It's just not worth the headache right now.

I do want her to potty train, so we constantly ask her about the potty, but no matter how we approach it this is her response:

"no thank you, I want my diaper"

Lately I've been telling her about all of her friends that use the potty. My hope is that it will convince her to at least try. Most of her friends still wear diapers, but there are a few who are fully potty trained. Today we're going to hang out with two of them. I told Pen about it and this was our conversation:

Me: Hey Pen, guess who we're going to see today to the zoo? Linden and Sophia!
Pen: Sophia? Yea mommy!
M: You know what, both Linden and Sophia go pee and poop on the potty. Isn't that neat?
P: Really neat, they go pee-pee obj t he potty! Good job!
M: Let's try and go pee-pee on the potty, like a big girl. Like Linden and Sophia.
P: No thanks mommy, I like my diaper.

Fail.

One day she will potty train. Sooner rather than later. But not today.

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Location:Home

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Differences

So I was reminded today during bathtime just how different the kids are from one another. There share a fair amount of traits, both physical and personality traits, but they are very different in some ways. This isn't surprising, but it is interesting - at least for me. Here is a short list of some of the most obvious differences:

1. Bathtime: while they both love the bath, Griffin's love for the water borders on worship. If I didn't know any better I'd say he was Kevin Costner in Waterworld (you know, with the gills behind his ears, don't tell me you didn't see that movie). The child will dump buckets of water onto his own head and then spurt, laugh, and do it again... And again... And again. Poe will splash and sit in the bath for as long as you let her, but she hates having water poured on her head. Hates. She's finally gotten the hang of leaning her head back when you rinse her hair, but she's still not a fan of water on her head. Suffice it to say, swimming lessons should be interesting this year for both kids.

2. Food: Penny is currently going through a picky stage, but at Griffin's age she was a pretty good eater. Only she wouldn't really eat meat. She still doesn't care for it. Griffin on the other hand cannot get enough of the animal flesh. Pork, beef, chicken, you name it. I haven't tried fish yet, but since I'm the only one who eats fish I don't buy it. Maybe next time we go out I'll order some salmon and let G try it.

3. Sleeping: it's well documented on this blog how Griffin's sleep is less than ideal. He has a harder time going to sleep and staying asleep than Penelope did at this age. I'm hoping it's something he catches up to her with very soon. I have no idea if this is just a G thing or if it's a formula vs breast milk thing. He seems to sleep better if I give him a bottle before bed AND nurse him, but that doesn't always work. Maybe it's a combination of both. I guess it doesn't really matter since he's not ready to stop nursing and I'm not ready to try sleep training. I haven't ruled out sleep training, but it is my last resort.

4. Cars: Griffin is infinitely more interested in cars and trains, or really any vehicle, than Penelope ever was. She had car/train toys, but never drove them around the house like G does. She never attempted to make "vroom" sounds until recently and never really preferred to play with moving toys. She always preferred books. G likes books, but he eats them half as often as he reads them.

5. Alone time: Poe has always been really good about playing on her own and hanging out by herself. G, not so much. He prefers to play with someone else.

6. No means... apparently for Griffin it means "try that again". While Penny will disobey (she is 2), she is now and has always been much more responsive to authority figures. She was also easier to redirect. Griffin is capable of being distracted, but it takes a lot more effort and a few more tries.

There are certainly more differences... And they share quite a few things in common, like loving to have their picture taken and smiling on command. They also share a love of the dog, grapes, and yogurt.


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Location:Home

Teeth and lullabies

First off, happy mothers day to all my fellow mommies.

Secondly, why is it that Griffin sleeps great for everyone but us? He only woke up once last night while at my parents house. No fair. Oh well, at least I got to sleep in so happy mothers day to me.

Perhaps his decent sleep is because molar#4 broke through. So he now has twelve teeth, although not all his molars are all the way in. I'm hoping that in the next week or so they'll all be functional so he can chew his food instead of just swallowing it. Of course, that probably won't happen since he shovels the stuff in like we've been withholding it. Boys.

I wanted to talk a little about lullabies, but I can't figure out a decent segway from teeth talk. Consider this your transition.

When I was pregnant (both times around) I would sing to the kids, Griffin got a lot of it since I sang Penelope to sleep each night. I have my regular "set list" and add songs as needed. Usually one round is enough although there are some nights when I give multiple encores. Sometimes I end up on autopilot when I'm tired and will end up singing the same song over and over - then that songs will end up playing in my dreams, which isn't as awesome as it sounds, it's actually rather annoying.

So for the record, here's the set list:
Baby Mine from the Dumbo soundtrack
Stay Awake from the Mary Poppins soundtrack
Goodnight My Angel by Billy Joel
Baby James by James Taylor
Walking in Memphis by Marc Cohn

Occasionally I'll throw in a Sinatra or Ella Fitzgerald tune like Always or Miss Otis Regrets or Someone to Watch Over Me


YouTube Video

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Location:Home

Friday, May 6, 2011

Outside

So I am now the proud owner of an iPad and am currently experimenting with the blogging feature and typing two handed on the keyboard. I expect that some of my posts will end up on damnautocorrect.com or whatever that site is... I'm not sure how to link to websites yet using this interface. So bear with me.

Bryan will now be taking ownership of the laptop since he needs it for school. It was actually cheaper for us to get me the iPad instead of another computer (since I refuse to buy a PC as every one I've ever bought has needed to be replaced a year after purchase). The laptop lasted me three years and will probably last Bryan many more than that. Hopefully the iPad has better longevity than my old PC laptops.

Anyway, here I sit, in the front yard typing away while the kids scream at me and eat chalk. Parenthood. It's grand.


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Location:The front lawn

Just over halfway

There are many reasons why I wouldn't recommend having your children 16 months apart. One is that it leaves you precious little time to lose babyweight before you tack on some more. When we got pregnant with Griffin I still had 15lbs to go before I was back to my "normal" weight, in part because I really gained too much when pregnant with Penelope. You're not really eating for 2, you're eating for 1.2. You actually don't need that many more calories a day when pregnant but I ate everything that wasn't nailed down and gained almost 40lbs w/ Poe.

Most of what I ate was healthy, but you can still pack on the pounds eating healthy foods if you eat too much.

I didn't gain as much with Griffin, closer to 30lbs, but when all was said and done I was about 43lbs overweight after G was born. For me, nursing did not help me lose baby weight (although it does for some) so I carried around and extra 40-ish lbs for 9 month after G's birth.

Around New Years I started losing weight. It was mostly unintentional at first, my goal was to eat better and cut down on soda not necessarily to lose a bunch of weight. I figured that weight loss would equal milk production drop (and I was partially right, I lost some milk production but not all) and so I wasn't quite ready to sacrifice nursing in order to move out of my "fat" jeans.

But once I started to lose a little it motivated me to lose more. I just feel better (physically and emotionally) when I'm not overweight.

It's been slow going. I don't have a ton of time to exercise, I don't belong to a gym, and I have this horrible habit of eating what the kids don't finish... BUT I've finally gotten to a pretty big milestone in my weight loss journey. I am officially halfway to my goal weight.

So I have lost 22 lbs.

I would really like to lose another 20 or so by the time my 30th birthday rolls around in September. My original goal was to lose another 25, but while I think I can do it, I don't think I can maintain that weight. I don't need to be a size 6 again - I'm almost 30 and have two kids (plus my Grand Canyon-like hips) but I think I can maintain a size 8/10. And really, it's not about being super skinny, it's about being healthy and setting a good example for my kids... which means not killing myself with diet/exercise while still being active and eating right.

So there. 22lbs. Go me! :)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

My son is a superhero (villian?)

This morning I came to the conclusion that Griffin is a superhero. Or supervillian, not sure yet which. Regardless, he clearly has the qualities necessary for either. Here is my evidence.

1. Superhuman strength. He is strong. Really, really strong. Stronger than Poe at this age for sure. His strength gives the ability to throw any sippy on the ground from an height and dislodge the plastic water flow mechanism inside the sippy so that it leaks all over the d*mn floor. He does this at every meal. I can't even do that.

2. Expressive eyebrows. Griffin can move his eyebrows independently. Seriously.


3. His laugh. G's laugh is... maniacal at times. You know, the more I write the more I suspect he's actually a supervillian.



4. Leadership qualities. This is, of course, just a nice way of saying that G does what he wants, when he wants. He occasionally listens to reason (i.e. Bryan and I), but more often than not he forges his own path.

5. A sidekick. The dog. Griffin is fascinated with Harley-Quinn and she loves him (mostly because he drops food). She lets him do anything to her. He often uses her as a prop to stand or walk. He joins her on the dog bed, he pulls her ears, runs her over with his walker, attempts to steal her dog treats, and tries to throw her balls. She takes all of the abuse without growling or whining.

6. He drives me crazy. I'd bet that Superman's parents got a little tired of his antics. Same goes for Lex Luthor. The child seriously drives me up a wall sometimes, but man do I love him. The only reasonable explanation for this is mind control, right?



So, what do you think?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tutu Toddlers

Penelope's first ballet lesson was today. It was more of a movement class with tutus, but she did learn a few ballet positions and she had a TON of fun. She was running around like a crazy person, making new friends, and have the time of her life.

In honor of her foray into ballet, my parents bought her this:







She loved it (obviously).

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Annoyances

Lately everything seems to annoy me. I don't know if women go through a hormonal shift 1 year after baby (since I was pregnant when Penny turned a year) so maybe that explains it. I know you go through one at weaning, but we're still nursing...

Anyway, this means that I have compiled a list of small things that really, really annoy me. At least they really annoy me lately. They're annoying in general, but a few times I've had to stop myself from saying something to these offending people.

1. People who call chimpanzees "monkeys". Look, I know Curious George has us all thinking that monkeys are tail-less and often walk around on two legs, but let me set you straight dear readers. Curious George is not a monkey and neither are chimpanzees. Chimps and monkeys are primates, but chimps are apes (as are gorillas) and if ONE more person at the zoo tells their impressionable young child to "look at that monkey! He's eating an onion" then I will verbally berate them for being an idiot. Plus? That chimp is actually A GIRL. If you LOOK it's not that hard to tell. Fricking morons.

2. Girl children wearing stripper clothing is not sexy, it's disturbing. They'll turn into sexual beings eventually, but putting your toddler in hot pants and a tube top makes you a shitty parent. Period. End of story. Hell, allowing your 7 year old to wear short shorts with "Juicy" written across the back is just as awful.

3. When it is sprinkling your windshield wipers do not have to be on "ludicrous" speed. They have speed settings for a reason. You look like an idiot. Stop it.

4. When you enter a freeway via on-ramp you're supposed to speed up you *&^%& jackwagon. It is not appropriate to enter traffic going 35 mph. This will earn you a stare of death as we pass. And what is it lately with the middle aged, chubby, balding, white guys in convertibles driving 50mph on the freeway? Seriously dude, your precious mid-life-crisis-mobile will not explode if you go over 55. There is not a bomb on it. Go the d*mn speed limit.

5. Mosquitoes. I hate you.

6. Do dog farts have to be that smelly? WTH did the dog EAT?

7. People who talk loudly about their sex lives at brunch. Look, I know it's an outdoor cafe, and you're having multiple glasses of wine at 11:30am, and you're out with your bestest gay friend, but I don't give a crap about your sex life and I'd rather not hear about it while I'm trying to enjoy my overpriced salad. Thanks.

That's it. For now.

Some Truths

1. One year olds are crap at folding laundry. They also suck at loading the dishwasher. In fact, they're pretty much useless when it comes to housework.

2. Two year olds are crap at folding laundry, but at least they're genuinely trying to help. Two year olds are only slightly better than one year olds at loading the dishwasher, although they not bad at unloading the dishwasher. Although, to be fair, Griffin is pretty good at unloading the silverware compartment, only he just throws the utensils on the floor. Fail.

3. Babies come hardwired to love remote controls. I have no idea why. They are also able to figure out how to change channels, turn on x-boxes, mute the TV, and navigate Netflix on the Wii, and call or text everyone in your contact list... but they can't figure out how to go to the bathroom in the toilet. They're savants I guess.

4. Younger siblings are the only reason why older siblings eat anything. "Hey, Bubba likes it!" is sometimes the only way to get Penelope to eat dinner.

5. No matter how short of a trip you're taking to the grocery store, it is inevitable that someone will desperately need a diaper change or a snack. Probably both. You will, at some point, find yourself in the checkout line in Safeway covered in urine and snot because your child just peed ten gallons and is crying for goldfish.

6. The loudest toy is always the favorite.

7. Toymakers are assholes.

8. The day you decide your toddler is able to make it through a day without a change of clothes is the day she discovers mud, has diarrhea, or both.

9. Snack cups are possessed by evil spirits and they will deliberately hide themselves and/or run away in pairs.

10. Some days, bedtime will be the most glorious moment of your day.

Ketchup Water

Toddler are gross. Ok, kids are gross. Like, really, really disgusting.

At lunch Penelope was experimenting with a "big girl" cup. She was actually doing quite well, until lunch came (with potatoes, hence the ketchup) and we shifted our focus to eating and the boy-child. Mistake. Because the next thing we know Penelope is spooning her ketchup into her big girl cup, mixing it up, and then drinking it. G.R.O.S.S.

Bryan was visibly repulsed.

It was pretty nasty.

Also? She peed all over herself. AND threw at least two tantrums. I don't know who replaced my daughter with a normal 2 year old, but I demand to have her back.

Oh, and Griffin has decided that high 5's involve heads. You hold up your hand and he head-butts it. It's pretty hilarious. I'll try and get it on camera.

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Penelope's Growth

6 years: 50 inches, 47 lbs
5 years: 48 inches, 42 lbs
4 years: 43.5 inches, 41.0 lbs
28 months: 39 inches, 33.1 lbs
26 months: 38.5 inches, 32.1 lbs
21 months: 37 inches, 31.8 lbs
18 months: 35 inches, 30 lbs
15 months: 34.25 inches, 28.8 lbs
12 months: 32 inches, 27.1 lbs
9 months: 30.5 inches, 25.1 lbs
6 months: 29 inches, 21.2 lbs
4 months: 28.5 inches, 17.13 lbs
2 months: 24.75 inches, 12.12 lbs
At birth: 20.75 inches, 7.15 lbs

Griffin's Growth

5 years - 3 feet 11.25 inches (47.25 inches), 51 lbs
3 years - 3 feet 5.25 inches, 40lbs
18 months - 34.5 inches, 27.13lbs
12 months - 32 inches, 26.5lbs*
10 months - 31.75 inches, 23.4 lbs
7 months - 29.25 inches, 21.4 lbs
5 months - 28.5 inches, 17.9 lbs*
4 months - 28 inches, 15.5 lbs
3 months - 27 inches, 13.10 lbs
2 months - 25.125 inches, ?? lbs
1 month - 24 inches, 10.13 lbs
At birth - 22.5 inches, 9.1 lbs
*with diaper

Izzy's Growth

2 months: 23.25 inches, 10.8 lbs
At Birth: 22 inches, 8.11 lbs

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