Thursday, December 18, 2008

Packed and Ready to Roll

Jellybean got her two front teeth. What more could a gal ask for?!

We will be in Canada for like a million years, so will be web dark until January. I hope that everyone has a very merry Christmas, a safe and happy holiday, a terrific New Year's, and enjoys warm and fun times with friends and family members. Don't kill the family members, they mean well.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Jellybean Gets a Pony

Yes, I swore I wasn't going to go crazy for Jellybean for Christmas.

Yes, I have proven time and time again to be a dirty liar.

No, I cannot afford this. No, she does not 'need' this.

But, really, as if? When people say, 'So what did you get your daughter for her first Christmas?', I will always be able to answer, 'A pony'.

And it's really, really super-cute. I know exactly what she's going to do on it. She's going to hug it, and crinkle its ears, and suck her fingers, and not rock 'n bounce at all. But she will love it.

In exciting news, JENNY GOT HER FIRST TOOTH!!! Yes, now all she wants for Christmas is just one more to pop through and she'll have her two front teeth. She did awesomely, I didn't even know it had shown itself until I stuck my finger in her mouth. Good work, Jelly! Next stop, steak!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Eggs

I need to know why someone didn't tell me that Cadbury's was releasing a 'Christmas' version of their coveted Easter Crème Egg. Oh, right, because I'd buy a dozen and gain 47 lbs, that's right. Seriously, I can't even remember where I saw them because I instantly blocked it out to protect myself. And my pants.

Today was a sad day because The Nanny's baby was barfy last night, so she couldn't come play. Which meant I had two really serious to-do items that I'd put off doing Friday that were going to be ignored in favor of 'Who's Got Stinky Toes?' and other classics (Jenny also greatly enjoys 'Mama's Interpretive Dance Stylings to Christmas Music' and 'Bellybutton Raspberries'). Luckily The Nanny's mum, Mimi, showed up around 3:30 so that I could get a teensy bit of blogging err work done.

It's like three seconds until we leave for Canada, it's so crazy. My Christmas wish this year is for the two of us to relax and get well, and I shotgunned some Flinstones chewables as I typed that. My mum thinks that Jellybean has an allergy, since there is apparently no such thing as the six-week-cold, so maybe getting the bastard out of Carolina will help (yes, I know, it may be accurate and a teensy bit funny but it's not very nice to say).

In much more boring news, I have my new laptop so am using the new Office 2007 MS Word 'Post to Blog' feature. I'll let you know how it turns out, and how much crying and screaming is involved. I don't like new things and drag my heels on changing pretty much anything, but I have a serious crush on the new Outlook layout. I feel like a commander at a post of some kind, there's just so much data available on my screen at one time!

As I load up all my old programs and spyware I will get back on track very quickly with updating Jelly's site with pics, however, I plan to be totally web dark for the holidays. I like to vacation on my vacations, which means no pressure to constantly update Facebook or stay on top of yahoo spam or view the latest youtube viral vid. I'll be back online sometime the week of January 5th, but will try to post at least once more before I go. Because, you know, I'm sure as heck not going to be WORKING this Friday.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

It Got Worse

Even if you don't know her, you want to kiss her, don't you?!

The good news on Friday was that I did NOT have strep throat. Yay!

The bad news was that Saturday evening I came down with the flu. I was hot/cold and up all night, finally barfing some time around 4am. Sunday morning my life-saving friend Ta picked up Jelly early, and I pulled myself together enough to shower and get on a plane.

Sunday evening I ran off a plane and barfed my guts out in the baggage terminal bathroom.

Early Monday morning I barfed some more, dozed feverishly, then woke up with pink eye.

This morning I woke up with the flu, pink eye, PLUS a cluster of cold sores.

Whaddya think tomorrow will bring? I’m excited. I am wondering if I’ll actually spew frogs, or locusts maybe. My poor little immune system must be so mad at me, I can’t imagine. I assume it’s from Jellybean constantly sneezing in my open mouth, or because I spend 14 hours a day up to my elbows in her boogers, or because she had some fussy nights and refuses to sleep anywhere but 1 ¼ inches away from my face, and she thinks it's hilarious to spit at me to try to get me to open my eyes.

I can only assume the lack of sleep the past few weeks is to blame. That, and my mother is right and I need to start taking better care of myself and eating real food. The past few days have been brutal – I’ve cut out dairy, chocolate, caffeine, citrus (or anything acidic in general), all migraine triggers in case that’s contributing (alcohol, mushrooms, MSG) – nothing is helping the crapping/barfing program my body is steadily running. Do you REMEMBER the post where I said I was looking forward to this week because I was going to get to go out drinking with some old coworkers I hadn't seen in 5 years?! CRUEL!!

Since I’m trying to be more positive this week for whatever reason, it’s actually good that I’m not home in my comfy bed right now. I’m not exposing The Bean to whatever the heck I’m wracked with. And I don’t have to get up with her in the night, which was brutal on Saturday (I put her in my lap and did the sitting bump thing to get down the stairs so that I wouldn’t drop her). Although I miss my electric blanket when the chills take over – I slept fully dressed and in my winter coat Sunday night, which was not as comfy as you might think. And I feel bad knowing that I exposed at least a zillion people to the medley of holiday joy I’m walking around with. But it’s a bad time to be unemployed, and my boss now definitely knows I’m committed (as well as committable).

I just want to be home. I miss my snotty baby. Look at that face again. How could I feel bad when I've got that waiting to greet me in a few days?

Friday, December 5, 2008

It Could Always Be Worse

There are lots of good things about blogs. When you have one, it’s cathartic to post. You can share things with people that you might not otherwise have time, or courage, or a venue, to share. When you read other blogs, you learn interesting fun facts about other people’s lives. Mostly that, despite the fact you think yours is the hardest, EVERYONE out there has a really super bad (not the movie, but like, the kind of bad you don’t even talk about) day or week occasionally.

I was prepared to write yet another ‘oh poor me’ post this morning, as I am writing from bed. I started feeling crappy last night as my throat slowly closed up and my glands prepared to take over my whole head. I had nightmares about being sick. First thing this morning I called my doctor, who can’t see me til 4:30. I just know it’s strep throat. That’s what I get when I’m stressed and run down and miss sleep. And of course it’s a Friday, so I’ll need to take care of the baby all day tomorrow and Sunday by myself while trying not to give it to her. Oh, and then I fly to Boston Sunday evening because I have a presentation to give to 35 of my peers all day Monday and Tuesday. Yep, awesomeness.

But it could be worse.

I could have no sleep and a screaming baby, and be out of my mind worrying about what I could do to make it even a little better.

I could have a darling husband and several cute children, and be in a terrible plane crash and have to be put in a medically-induced coma for three months.

I could be still trying to have my first and only, suffering through month after month of crushing disappointment and fertility humiliations err treatments, only to be told at age 36 that I’m starting menopause early.

Some people think that blogs are self-serving, a waste of time, passive spam. I constantly find blogs that remind me to appreciate what I have, to stop bitching about the small things or even the big things because, well, at least I have the ability and energy to bitch, right? Over 500,000 people were laid off in the month of November, and I wasn’t one of ‘em. My neighbors totally suck, but I have a nice house, and the heating bill is killing me but I have heat. Diapers and formula have taken the place of $200 hair cuts, but I can feed and clothe my baby. I have to be away from Jelly for a week, but we will have two whole weeks at Christmas together, and I have a tree up and presents underneath it, and I didn’t have to steal or ask for a handout to get them.

If you are having a really, really bad time right now, look around the interwebs. There are other people sick and scared and lonely and tired and frustrated and hurting. Remind yourself of 5 things that you are grateful for. I’ll bet it won’t be hard. And hang in there. Remember the Devil's Arithmetic - one day plus one day plus one day plus one day...

My 5 Things Today:

1. Jellybean (duh!)
2. My job - Unknowingly paying me to write blog posts for over 4 years
3. My family, and my friends who are like family
4. I’m not in South Carolina
5. Chocolate-covered marshmallow Santas (you were expecting something deeper from me? Have you EATEN those things?! Happiness in a little green foil wrapper, my friend)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Long Slow Descent Into Holiday Hell

Man, am I beat. I really don't have time to dilly-dally around with blog posting seeing as I've got to prep for my presentation in Boston next week (yes, can you believe how pitiful my life is that I've got to go back already, and how pitiable your life is that you'll have to hear more whining about it?). But I hate to disappoint the fans, plus it gives me another opportunity to point out that my cousin hasn't posted in A MONTH practically. Sheesh.
Soooooooo... in one single stream-of-consciousness statement, here's the Thanksgiving event summary;

Lousy traffic as expected, overtired baby freaked out by everyone and the noise, overtired stressed out mother freaked out by noise and trying to keep freaked out baby from clinging to ceiling fan, hot and barfy shopping excursion, ignored for iPhone and totally jealous, headache, off-schedule baby, trying to do too much and exhausting self, put up Christmas tree and barely get half the ornaments on but HEY! it's a damn tree up and I'm a freaking single mother so BACK OFF! so very tired, baby not sleeping, nice to see family but so little time to enjoy it, house so full of people and baby stuff and need to do laundry and always dirty dishes and OH THANK GOD IT'S TUESDAY AND THE NANNY IS COMING.

The End.

Jellybean did NOT enjoy having guests in her house. She is a lot like me that way - she is very social and happy until she decides she's done with the whole thing, and then just wants everyone the hell out THAT INSTANT. She warmed up to my mum eventually, and my brother danced for her so she thought he was hilarious and he earned the name Uncle Dancy, which he's understandably not too thrilled about. She even came around to my dad, despite the fact he growled and pawed at her like some loud scary moustached bear. With his shirt tucked into his underpants. However, she constantly startled whenever someone walked past, especially in the evening, and all the extra sounds seemed to irritate her. She didn't sleep well, either in Charlotte or at home, and was pretty clingy even for a Jelly. I'm tired of hauling her fat butt around, regardless of how cute it is. I was happy to have non-house, non-baby work to focus on today.
It makes me even more excited for the Christmas break; since it's less than 3 weeks away, Jelly might remember the grandparents and not freak out as bad. And we have more time to settle into a comfortable routine. And I won't be all tense about being at my house, and everything that needs done. We'll have a whole two weeks to relax and spend time together, which was really the best part of the long weekend - just getting to spend time with the bean. I am glad and grateful that my parents made the long trek down here, and it was great to see them and hang out with my mum (and she cooked some awesome meals, as always). Secretly it was a little nice to have a clingy baby who wanted her mother, and it was me.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Friday, November 21, 2008

You Know It's Good if it Separates into Strata

Long story short, I got loaded in the Delta terminal at the BOS airport. I have no excuse, other than, "Suck it, I could!" Here is the post I wrote while loaded. It was barely legible and had some sort of gravy splattered on it. If you make it through the drunken rambling you will be rewarded with a hilarious picture of me.

I love American Airlines. LOVE 'em. Their RDU-> BOS leg offers single seats, so no one has to touch my pudge or try to steal my leg room or gently caress my thigh (happened!). But this trip and next, I have to resort to AA there, Delta home. Delta, of course, was delayed, because that's what they do.
HOWEVER, apparently what they lack in punctuality they make up for in terminal bars. I had a positively lovely $7 burger, and two $10 girly drinks. At this exact moment, I LOVE DELTA! As (*note - I should have written 'Ask') me again after a 2-hour flight beside a farty snorey businessman.
I get to see my baby in like four hours or so. Oh crap, I need to get to my gate. Anywho, the week was ok but busy, and the next trip will be even more hectic, because that will be MY presentation for my product, and my annual performance review, and a product training. BLECH! But I have 'Lucky's Bar' to look forward to again. Same time, same place, Lady. It's a date. (*note - yes, I really wrote that)
I had the Clockwork Orange, with vanilla vodka, orange liquer, and white chocolate liquer, and the Rootbeer Float, with root beer liquer, whipped cri (*note- this should have said 'cream' but I was fading fast at this point), and amaretto. Consider my ass KICKED. Plane nap!
(*note - At this time, I decided to go and look at how red my face was, because I could feel it, so I went to the bathroom. It was so red, I decided it would be a good idea to take a picture. This is the picture I took. I think I look like a crazed reject from 'Tron'. No, in answer to your question, I will never learn)
p.s. Because we were even further delayed they offered free cocktails on the flight. I made the tragic mistake of chucking a few Bloody Marys onto all that sweet. I am not so much 'tired' today as 'hungover' and 'just plain stupid'. Have a good weekend everyone, and be smart.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Types of People I Hate in Corporate Training Classes

1. Shorts Guy
The nerd who thinks he's cool because he's in shorts. In November. In Boston. This is the equivalent of wearing your coat unzipped during a blizzard in middle school. You know as soon as you see him that, when the trainer asks at 5:15 whether anyone has any more questions, you're going to hear from him. Everyone will want to beat him up in the school yard after class gets out at 7.

2. Smarty McPantsalot
Is his own favorite audience. Asks stupid questions because he has no friends and this is the only time someone actually listens to him. Does things like fight about commonly-used phrases or expressions. Known to look things up online to contradict the instructor and prove himself right about things totally unrelated to the training. Sits back in his chair with his arms behind his head and his feet up, in order to seem devil-may-care. Often confused with Mr. Much More Important Than You.

3. Defensive Lady
Easily identified by her outdated hairdo and wardrobe, and her large, cheap, tacky earrings. Tries to make eye contact with everyone when she talks but just ends up looking shifty. Mumbles under her breath when her opinions are shot down. Spins nervously in her chair when speaking. Interrupts people (instructor included) constantly. Rushes out of the room when class is over to avoid direct human contact. Commonly a representative from Support.

4. Mr. Much More Important Than You
Leaves his cell phone on (and has either some sort of hideously annoying customized ringtone, or an equally irritating generic ear-bleeding Nokia ring) and takes calls during class. Leaves for extended periods and times his returns so that they cause maximum interruption, yet always stays in the room 'working' during lunch and break times to the annoyance of the instructor. Spends the entire training session on email and IM. Sits in the back room and has constant sidebar conversations with everyone around him. Always the first to leave for the airport. Talks everyone into going someplace crappy for dinner and then doesn't show up.

5. The Slob
Shows up late no matter the start time. Instead of a notebook, paper and pen he has a loud, messy snack. Sometimes confused with Shorts Guy due to his slovenly attire, however, Shorts Guy wears a clean dress shirt and The Slob sports a stained faded golf shirt that occasionally rides up to show his pale extended beer gut. Brags about going to Dunkin Donuts during the lab exercise. Usually spills something, and always leaves a trail of Diet Dr. Pepper bottles and Tootsie Roll wrappers in his wake. Is a close talker and likes to tell vaguely offensive jokes. Always sits beside me.

6. Helpful Helen
Reminds the instructor of things like telling attendees to SHUT OFF THEIR DAMN PHONES ALREADY! During the stupid 'dare to share' intro always has a little joke prepared to put the group at ease and make the class seem like a fun place to be. Fixes wireless access for at least 2 classmates, or helps The Slob keep track of what page they're on or what planet. Organizes group dinner activities. Nods and smiles a lot at the instructor to make it seem as though she is paying attention, when in reality she is drafting her next blog post or looking at pictures of her baby and counting the hours til when she can hold her again.

Report from Boston

Well, here I am, BiB (Back in Boston, not Back in Black as I am not a rocker). It’s a chilly 30-odd degrees this week, and I had forgotten what a joy it is to travel with cold-weather gear. My suitcase, like my butt, gained an extra 7 lbs. Expense account dining is not my friend. But I had the most DELICIOUS chocolate hazelnut martini at dinner last night. C’est magnifique! I also got to experience the joy of checking luggage in the newly overhauled RDU Terminal 2, which was a beautiful but time-consuming experience. I need to leave for my Canada Christmas flight check-in NOW. And just think, I’ll have a baby with me in addition to the 872 pieces of luggage.

The tragically stupid rental car I have this week. THREE rows of seating. As if!

Speaking of Jelly – boy, do I ever miss that kid. Topping of list of ‘Things Mothers Hate to Hear’ is, “Jenny cried from the time you left to the time she finally sobbed herself to sleep”. Poor motherless child. Thank god kids supposedly don’t retain any memories from before the age of 3.

The Service Eval I’m attending was boring as hell, which is to be expected, although I did get to see my ol’ training pal Joan. Hi, Joanie! The bad news is, there is just so much I have to get done in the next few weeks that I’m working nights all this week and having to use my lunch breaks for meetings in order to keep treading water. I had all kinds of wild ‘n crazy plans to party and get drunk and see R-rated movies this week, but like the best-laid plans I have managed to eat a lot of takeout in bed in my jammies.

Jellybean still has her cold (going on one month, now), and has had some stomach issues. Thankfully her 6-month checkup is Monday, so they can tell me that she’s fine and there’s nothing else I could be doing besides my compulsive worrying. SIX MONTHS OLD THIS WEEK. MY BABY!! We had a sad day last Saturday when we attempted to go see Santa at the mall. I got her all dressed up in her holiday finest and strapped into her (almost outgrown) car seat, when she hurled everywhere. As in, I had to clean out the BUCKLES. Gross, and, poor baby. It was doubly disappointing when I learned today that the appointment to have professional photos taken on Sunday needed to be cancelled, since the woman didn’t actually have a studio. Or backdrops. I was like, ‘Uh, I can take pictures of my baby in my own house myself, thanks anyhow’. I guess I’ll wait til she’s one, since I’ll never find anyone on such short notice at this point. Frowny face.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Kath and Kim and Khristmas

I have been trying to remember to write a post about my Kath & Kim feelings for quite some time now. Despite the fact that everyone tells me I should be watching The Big Bang Theory or whatever the heck it’s called, I haven’t been too interested in any new programming this season. Yes, The Office and 30 Rock are totally awesome, but I lost interest in Fringe because I don’t like whats-his-name, and something else conflicted with my beloved House… anyhow. So Kath & Kim is using a Scissor Sisters song as their intro right now (I guess until it catches on or doesn’t, and it gets its own theme or everyone goes on unemployment), which is the first sign that it is totally for gay men. Then it has that dude from all those movies like Mighty Wind, who is totally gay, and the audience knows it, and there are lots of jokes in the show about how we all know it. And there’s the stupid straight guy, Kim’s ‘husband’, who I feel both pity and admiration for in his use of the word ‘dude’. And there’s the fashion, and the constant celebrity gossiping. I haven’t talked to my gays lately, but they ought to love it. I hated it, then liked it, then hated it some more, then decided that while I could barely tolerate Selma Blair’s moronic, self-involved hateful character, Molly Shannon was still Molly and I adored her so much that it was worth the lame jokes. So now you know – I am the one person that is watching that show.

Now that that’s out of the way, is it Christmas yet? I may have decorated Jellybean’s room already. In my defense, I had all kinds of leftover ornaments from her last photo shoot, and I couldn’t just put them away in sad little lonely boxes. So I hung them all around her room, on the mirror frame and the curtain rod and on her clothes hooks. Then I found a fantastic fiber optic mini-tree in hot pink. Yes, you heard me – FIBER OPTIC. You know how weak in the knees I get when I see little changing lights. So that got thrown in there. Jenny doesn’t know what to do with it all but thinks it’s pretty darn fun.

Sunday I have to go to Boston, which totally blows – I don’t get a full weekend with The Jelly. And then I get back late Thursday night, after she’s in bed already. But how happy will she be to see me get her up on Friday morning?! Then it’s busy, busy, busy. Another massage, and her first professional photo shoot, and then it’s Thanksgiving and we’re off to Charlotte, and will bring back my parents and brother. Then it’s the local Christmas parade, and another Boston trip, and a Festivus party, and Canada for Christmas! Time is flying. Her 6-month appointment is on the 24th. Hard to believe.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

One Small Step

Congrats, President Obama! I know that the NC results show as 50%/50%, but the actual numbers tell the real story - 2,101, 991 to 2,089,828 at last count. And I'm proud and excited to be that little '1' in such a close race. I can't make it through your acceptance speech because I cry at the awesomeness of it all, and I hope you prove all the naysayers wrong. You're going to make some mistakes, and people will be critical of you, and you will have to make some tough decisions - but I think you're the right one for the job.


We've still got a long way to go. Let's not get too excited until we see that change is effected, and that it's the change we need. Let's not forget that there are still a lot of issues out there that, while they may not be as big as the race issue, are still important. There are still people fighting to take or keep away rights that others have, be they women or immigrants or handicapped or just plain poor.

Prop 8 passed, folks. That's uncool.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

All I Want for Christmas is a Non-Hysterical Child

Jenny rocks the vote - in line for early voting on Saturday

Imagine my supreme embarrassment when, while watching my favorite Halloween movie, ‘Practical Magic’ (ok, so maybe it’s one of my favorite movies all the time – I already told you not to judge me), I had a shocking and terrible revelation.

I named Jenny after Nicole Kidman’s character.

No, really, it’s awful – here I was, watching the movie with one eye and watching my sleeping baby and this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly with the other, when all of a sudden Sandra Bullock’s character says, ‘Jillybean’. Now, I looked it up, and the character’s name is technically spelled with a ‘g’, ‘Gillian’. So that’s a little better. But still – the reason I love that name and nickname. Right there, in all its horrifying cheesy glory. I couldn’t believe it. I guess it’s better than naming her Nomi (I felt nasty just having to look up the spelling of THAT one – need to Lysol my monitor later). And I do enjoy NK’s character – she’s full of passion and loves love and has really super hair, blah blah blah. So it could be worse. But, uh, yeah. That’s apparently where I got Jelly’s middle name and nickname from. I WARNED YOU I WAS LAME!!! (or I perhaps should have, if I didn’t).

On Sunday, imagine my surprise and delight when, shopping in my new Favorite Wal-Mart Ever (FWE), I heard a familiar and catchy tune on the Muzak speakers.

It was ‘Silent Night’.

omgomgomgomgomgomg omgomgomgomgomgomg
omgomgomgomgomgomg omgomgomgomgomgomg

That means it’s almost CHRISTMAS!! Ok, it means the stores are way out of control because Christmas is like a million trabillion eons away still. But there’s Egg Nog in the coolers and trees in the aisles and it’s beginning to look a lot like my favorite holiday season! And Jenny’s FIRST CHRISTMAS. I am going to explode. There aren’t enough cameras in the world to capture the pictures I want to take. Must remember to slow down and actually enjoy the moments instead of just maniacally snapping away.

To further fuel my fire, my favorite consignment store threw a yule log my way with a Holiday Party last night, to thank their customers and introduce some of the mommies who do custom stuff (like monogramming and hair do-dads etc.). Jenny taught me a very, very important lesson that I will never, ever forget – do NOT, under any circumstances, no matter the situation, I repeat, DO NOT wake her up from a nap.

I think part of the problem is that she is still getting use to her new car seat, and can’t sleep in it yet. So I woke her up to go to the event and she was pissed, and couldn’t get back to sleep. Then we got to the event, and she was even more pissed. I spent 20 minutes walking around carrying an 80-lb diaper bag and an even heavier fussy angry baby throwing punches, and turned around and went home again. So much for a fun night with hors d’oeuvres and door prizes and nice mommies. Did I mention Jenny was pissed? Being put back into the car seat was the equivalent of throwing lit matches at her. She screamed, and coughed, and choked, and screamed some more, and worked herself into such a fit during the 12-minute ride home that she could not be calmed down. I tried music, and walking, and rocking, and soothing ‘shush shush’ noises, and a bottle, and saying ‘I’m sorry, I’ll never do it again’ over and over. Nothing worked. She screamed so much she threw up. All over us both. I bet you can guess whether that made her happy, or more upset. Eventually I remembered my sister’s piece of advice about a bath for a hysterical child, and tried that. She calmed down, but man, did she glower at me the whole time. I tried all my usual tricks to get her to laugh, or even smile, but she was a cold, angry customer. I got her into jammies and got her to sleep for a bit, and she eventually took another bottle and gave me a few gratuitous grins to let me know she’d consider forgiving me. That temper, boy, am I ever in trouble. I guess it's my fault for naming her after a redhead.

Friday, October 31, 2008

October 31st, 2008

Happy Halloween!

I TOTALLY forgot it was Halloween this morning. Me. Who LIVES for stuff like this, and loves to dress up, and go crazy for holidays (although I don’t necessarily throw crap around the house). I caught Jenny’s nasty little cold bug so have that terrific combination of head-clogged-hurts-to-swallow-can’t-think-so-weak. I felt bad because Nanny got to the house and was wearing orange and black, and Cade was dressed up, and there’s me and Jenny like lame asses in everyday wear. Poor Jenny. Thank god she’s still too young to be traumatized. Poor Nanny. I wish she knew that normally, I'm much more cool.

Since we’re sick, I have to bail on our sleepover plans, which sucks for a multitude of reasons. I was excited about scrappin’ AND now I either have to run and get candy, or hide from my neighbor kids, and I don’t want to be that person. This is like the 5th Halloween I’ve been sick, come to think of it… last year I was pregnant, a few years ago I had a terrible migraine, one year I had the flu – ‘tis the season, I guess.

It’s been COLD here the past few mornings, which is odd for NC. The frost has been beautiful though, and I’ve been sleeping like a baby. A healthy baby. Not a stuffy-nose baby who is mad she can’t breathe when she sucks her fingers. Poor Jellybean. And it frustrates me, because mama can’t make it all better for her, and all I do is torture her further with saline and nose suckage.

Sunday morning, if we feel better, we have a play date with an old friend of mine that I worked with 9 years ago. She’s had another baby since, so has a 2-year old girl that I am very excited to meet. And she’s a great person for gossiping with, so I can’t wait to catch up. Thanks, Facebook!

I hope everyone has a fun night, whatever your plans, be they parties, or handing out candy, or bolting and hiding when the doorbell rings because it scares you, or dressing in a sexy costume and trying to score so you have a story for your therapist, or wrangling multiple small monsters despite your exhaustion so that they have fun, or eating chicken soup and going to bed at 8:30, or packing for Denmark. Man, my friends' lives suck!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Weekend Update with Jellybean Mama

I'd like this one, please. And a spoon.

Phew! That pretty much sums it up. We had a rocky start to the weekend with the introduction of peas, which for Jellybean have the magical power of turning poo to stone. So then we moved on to prunes, which have the magical power of making poo shoot all over the changing table the very instant I bend over to throw out a diaper. So then, always a sucker for punishment, I decided to also introduce pumpkin, which had the magical power of making me wish I was dead because it was so much damn work. But I finally roasted a pumpkin! After years of buying them and swearing I would make totally-from-scratch pumpkin pie, or that soup you serve in the pumpkin shell… yes, pumpkin was my eggplant ( you know, something you buy over and over and just stare at and eventually throw out without touching; like persimmons). Anyhow, yes, finally did it. So I took a damn picture because I was so freaking proud of myself.
Yeah, I really do think I'm all that.

Saturday I got to go have a massage, and it was A W E S O M E. Seriously, I told Dre when we left that I had to go to Jarrod’s and get an engagement ring for Candace, my masseuse. I instantly booked another with her for the weekend after my next Boston trip (and before my parents arrive). Smart, huh?! Aunt Chrissy babysat her and said she did fine, so we totally need to hang with Aunt Jen some more before next month.

Sunday started off rough. Jenny had no interest in sleeping in, despite my protestations that it was a weekend. She is a cold, cruel child. She thought that repeatedly punching me in the face and giggling was a much better plan. My own damn fault for making a ‘beep’ noise whenever she touches my nose. Memo to self: Do not teach small brutish mammal anything else, ever.
So we hit the ground running at 6 am with a few loads of laundry and started making homemade baby food for the week. Then there was the cleaning. And then I broke a glass bowl and it shattered into one billion pieces so there was more cleaning, and broken glass shards in my feet all day and guilt and paranoia about crawling babies. And we went to the Triangle Mommies Trunk-or-Treat, so there were some outfit changes. Oh, and I squeezed in her 5-month photo session there as well. Did I mention I forgot to eat breakfast or lunch AND started my period that morning? We walked around at the ToT event, which Jenny seemed to enjoy (attention-seeking baby), but I was approximately the temperature of the surface of the sun in my 19-layers-of-black witch costume. And there were only like 3 other moms there dressed up! AS IF! I am a SINGLE MOTHER, people, so don’t stand in front of me and whine about how hard it is at home, not working, with your husband, and your school-age child, and your lack of a costume. And your lack of an ass in those awesome stripey leggings. Sheesh.

No, really, I am this happy and cute, despite what the whiny lady says.

So needless to say, I fell asleep sitting up on the couch at 6 pm. I was wiped. I put Jellybean to bed without a bath like the terrible mother I am, and tried to crawl into bed at 8ish.


Jenny realized instantly, at 8:17 pm, that she had a cold. Which included nasty sinus congestion that TOTALLY pissed her off. She’d sleep for 11 seconds and then try to breathe through her nose and wake up, furious at the indignity of it all. So I pulled her into bed with me, since I knew I’d be awake anyhow, and spent the night patting and generally trying unsuccessfully to soothe a very unhappy and snotty baby every ½ hour or so.

Me. Tired. Very.

Such a crappy way to start a Monday. But the pics from the photo session yesterday turned out even better than expected (Hint: I may not need to save my pennies for a professional photographer for Christmas, after all. And no, you can’t see them yet). Jelly really had fun yesterday, despite the 80’s dance party music blaring unexpectedly (which made me realize Jenny has a lot to learn about her mother’s musical leanings). I just, uh, would like some sleep, please. I’ll wash my baby, honest. Just make her feel better.

Friday, October 24, 2008

A Fair Day, A Better Bath, and a Cute Kitty

Can you believe that next Friday is All Hallow’s Eve?! That is just crazy. I have to try Jelly’s costume on her this weekend, because I have a sneaking suspicion that she will not be a kitty for Halloween after all. It was snug a few weeks ago, and she hasn’t managed to lose any girth since then (just like her mama), so she may have to be crammed into her Renaissance Faire dress instead. Poor little thing will have to be a princess instead. The Nanny totally called me out on not one but two of my weaknesses this week – one was when I struggled to decide between a little bunny hat and a little kitty hat for Jenny to wear on her outing, and she said, ‘So, you like ears, huh?’ and I admitted that I actually had a hat of my own with kitty ears (don’t you judge me!). The second was when I returned home from Trader Joe’s with handmade marshmallows. She said, ‘So, you like marshmallows a lot, huh?’ Apparently she noticed that there were multiple sizes and flavors in the pantry. So embarrassing. Why can’t I be cooler? I have a feeling Nanny loves to tell stories about her boss.
The afternoon at the fair was great. Jellybean got a lot more out of it than I ever would have imagined, but that might be because she had quite a few people adore her and smile and talk to her. She was not happy when I put her on the ‘Guess Your Weight’ scale, but went crazy when I gave her a little teensy bit of root beer. She was ambivalent about most of the animals in the barn with the exception of the cows. I don’t know how I’m going to keep one of those in my backyard when she’s older.
I ordered and received the world’s best baby bath product this week, the Kangaroo pouch. OMG I wish I’d had that like 5 months ago. It’s especially great now that it’s -32 degrees in the house – I can whip her slippery chubby tush out of the deadly tub and straight into a warm, snug, soft cuddly pocket against my chest. And it has a hood for her wet little head, so she doesn’t lose that 92% body heat that my mother always warned me about. I totally heart it. Get one if you have a baby. Now. It’s worth any price. And it’s adjustable as she gets longer! SO SMART.

Tomorrow I GET TO GO HAVE A MASSAGE! And the world rejoiced! Sunday is the Triangle Mommy Trunk-or-Treat, so we get to play dress-up, which is always awesome. Hmm, I just realized I have no idea what I’m wearing for my witch costume under the overdress from my Renn costume. Well, at least I don’t have a shortage of potential black clothes to choose from. I can’t wait to post those pics next week. And I TOTALLY need to take JR’s 5-month pics, who knows when I’ll find time to do that. I am still getting use to the idea that she’s growing up.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Jelly Roll

I use to take baths in here. Now it's just another Jellybean play area.

Jenny rolled over yesterday, totally unprompted and totally tickled with herself. I put her down on her back, turned away to grab the camera, and she was on her stomach when I turned back around. Luckily she did it twice more so I could capture it on video for all posterity. Like everything she does, it makes me excited that she’s getting older and gaining mad skillz (still no bow, as yet), but also sad and nostalgic and where’s-my-baby-gone? all weepy momma. She’s going great guns with the solids, and I’m pretty sure she’ll claim a drumstick for herself at Thanksgiving dinner in Charlotte.

Strike 2 this weekend with the Big Bad Bathtub. I found another seat that is like a Transformer, and converts from baby-sits-in-water to baby-sits-upright-in-a-seat, that I thought would work. Apparently the bottom of my tub is to blame, as it was still a little skiddy. Also, it bit her in the leg. I’ve decided the builders of my house were sadists because the toilet is in the worst possible position for trying to give a kid a bath. I may have to move her cozy nest out of my bathroom tub and bathe her in there. So much work, this bath time thing! So much backache and sore knees and wet clothes and cold baby and dirty washcloths and trauma. *sigh* At least she’s being doing a great job of going to bed afterwards – she conks out after a post-bath bottle, I wait ½ hour or so til she’s dead weight, and she sleeps til 6. I actually got to read a magazine last night, and turn pages with BOTH HANDS! I know, my sister would punch me in the face since she’s got a toddler and a newborn and probably dreams of having 5 seconds to read a magazine or wipe thoroughly or eat a fig newton.

Saturday we didn’t go to the farm because it was suppose to be rainy, so we went to PetSmart with Tata and Jellybean picked out a puppy for her. Beau Diddley Dog is very sweet, although as much a burden as a baby (he can’t do steps yet so has to be carried outside at 3 am to piddle). Next weekend I was going to try to attempt a Halloween party, but since it starts at 5:30 and is 30 miles away, the math doesn’t bode well (the approaching train of bedtime hurtles towards me starting at 6 or 6:30). I am still going to try to do Trunk or Treat with the local mommies group on Sunday, though, which should be a good time. And Aunt Chrissy will watch the burden for a few hours on Saturday so I can go get a massage-school massage, which I cannot WAIT for after last week’s definite-absence-of-a-promised-massage at the spa open house. Hopefully Jenny will give Aunt C. less of a hassle than poor Aunt Jen last week.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Jennifer Jillian, Superstar

Admit it, you wish you could still do this

I’ve been trying to write a post for three days now, and despite my desire to avoid anything that looks like work, I’ve managed to find other things to do that aren’t work OR a semi-literate, mildly interesting, mediocre, unfunny post.

Things I’ve Done This Week That Aren’t Work or Blogging

Watch my baby roll over! Yes! She's so completely, totally awesome! A full back-to-front-to-back roll over! It was totally coaxed out of her by the always-fantastic Nanny, but still. It counts. She is a rockstar. The Nanny's baby was like, 'Whatever, I could do that if I wanted to, I just don't want to'. And he's three weeks older. So she gets a baby point (whatever that is).

Booked my Christmas flight to Canada. Yes, I say ‘finally’ even though it’s only October, because I’ve been agonizing about it since Baby Fathead was born. Do I go for the slightly cheaper layover that will take a minimum of 6 hours of travel time PLUS the joy of going through customs, or do I bite the bullet (and the AMEX) and just do what every other good American is doing right now and put the equivalent of what I paid for my first car on a credit card so that I can be there and done with it in 1 ½ hours? I have a four-month old. I made the smart, expensive choice. Two exciting things about booking with Air Canada – they had a link to Zerofootprint, a carbon-offsetting group, so you could donate the equivalent of the damage you were doing to the environment by flying in a big nasty airplane. One of my resolutions when I became a mother was to try to be a little more environmental, so I thought this was nice. Also, with AC, Jelly gets to check two pieces of her own luggage IN ADDITION TO MINE. For no additional cost. So sexy! This was good news, since she officially has a different holiday-themed outfit and ‘Baby’s First Christmas’ sleeper for each day that we’re at my parents. Plus hats.

Barfed over car seats. Booking my trip meant I started worrying again about Chunks’ next seat. The internets and every single parent on the planet implied that I would be a child abuser if I did not buy a $300+ Britax for Little Precious. She needs to recline, have a cup holder, and be able to launch missiles. I guess I should be grateful I got her travel system for such a steal, because it looks like I’m going to hit the streets and start turning tricks for her next child restraint device. What was it they used in the old-timey days? Oh, right, nothing.

Put away more of Jellybean’s 3-6 mo and summer clothes. It just made me mad this time that there were so many freakishly adorable outfits that she didn’t get to wear either because of weather or freakishly fat upper thighs. I set aside a few ‘keepers’ and was distraught to realize if I do this every time she outgrows stuff I will have to convert my guest room into a closet. But seriously, how cute were those polka-dot jammies? KEEP ‘EM-CUTE, that’s what.

Synced my cell with Outlook and uploaded Jenny’s lullabies to my phone. Because, well, you never know when you’ll just HAVE to have a copy of ‘Baby Beluga’ on stand-by. I needed it last night at Ta’s when she was Super Incredible Fussing Baby – that one little song could’ve made things so much easier, although it would have been hard to hear over Tata and her visiting parents bickering. Ah, mothers and daughters, such an emotionally fraught, nerve-wracking thing. I also backed up several laptop folders to an external hard drive, which is ALMOST like work, but since I was mostly backing up the seven trazillion pics of Jelly it doesn’t count.

Go to the dentist. My trying-to-get-pregnant hygienist still hasn’t had any luck AND the new girl cleaned my teeth with horrid cinnamon polish, so it was an all-around bad visit.

It's almost Friday, so have a nice weekend and remember - be careful out there.

Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving, crazy Canuck-style.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Fightin' Words

Jenny has had a very fun week, vaccinations excluded. She had lots of outings with Nanny, and since the weather is cooler she is much happier when outside. I was a little sad, yesterday, because their outing meant going to one of those pottery-painting places to make a present for me for Christmas. It was the first ooooh-I-missed-out-on-one-of-her-firsts kinda things, but I reminded myself a.)She’s just a baby and her long-term memory isn’t that great and b.)It’s just a pottery-painting thing. So I’m over it. But it made me think of the next first that may be more important that I will feel sad about missing. Luckily I’m right upstairs for when she starts to crawl and walk and talk, so I need to let some of the other stuff go. It’s part of sharing motherhood with another person, and I need to toughen up so that I don’t have bitterness or melancholy or regret or little hurt feelings.

In DEFINITELY TMI news, I’m feeling better, which is odd because I’ve spent the past few weeks trying a million different things, and when I decide SCREW IT! and make chili for dinner, with hot sauce dribbled saucily all over it, like, ‘In your face, potential irritable bowels!’, I am FINE. It was the first meal I’ve had in weeks that wasn’t immediately ejected. How does that make sense?!!! Rice and toast = blowout, but chili sat quite nicely and pleasantly in my system until a smooth and quiet departure. I’m flummoxed. Sorry to share. Happy Friday!

Tonight is the monthly Hacker meeting, which may raise a few eyebrows, but Jelly needs to be around more dudes and it’s the perfect venue for that. We’ll go and hang out and she’ll get passed around and adored and I’ll slowly sip an overpriced watery chai drink and think about how nice it would be to be at home having a Jammy Jam. But plenty of time for that this weekend. Tomorrow Tata and The Baby and I will hit another consignment sale, and then Sunday is Clean the Closet day. I started tearing out all my winter stuff already, and have two bags of stuff to donate that I can’t believe I moved. As if I’m ever going to wear a ‘Free Winona’ t-shirt! I am forcing myself to pack away all my comfy maternity clothes, because that doesn't help anyone, but I'll miss all those stretchy waistbands and swingy tops.

In ‘Mommy is a Crazy Lady Who Shouts at People’ news, I was out yelling at neighbor kids yesterday evening. These kids, 8-10 years old or so, who live up the street, like to bike down to my end of the cul-de-sac and bounce a ball and play in the empty lot next to myself and have screaming contests. It’s lots of fun. Anywhoo, yesterday they added throwing rocks at the neighbor’s dog to the after-school adventures. I was done. I went outside and hollered, ‘You better not be tormenting that dog!’, and when they got all surly and started mumbling under their breath, I added, ‘And come get your bike out of my driveway!’, and stood there glaring with my best Teacher look. I guess they could tell I meant business, because they got on their bikes and left. I’m interested to see what they do to my house when I’m not home.
This morning, the nice men who cut my grass but don’t speak much English, showed up a week earlier than they were suppose to be scheduled. I knew it was coming, because they cut it earlier than they should have when I was last in Boston, and I refuse to pay that much to get my stupid grass cut that often. So despite the fact I was on a conference call, as soon as I heard the motor start I put the phone on mute and tore off my socks (faster than stopping and putting on shoes) and went flying outside. I realized I didn’t know the Spanish word for ‘Stop’ and shouting ‘Hola!’ just seemed weird, so I started waving my socks and lamely screaming ‘Hey there!’ When the nice man shut off the engine and cocked his head at me, like, ‘What do you want, crazy barefoot lady?’, I tried to get my point across by TAPPING MY WRIST and repeating, ‘No, too soon!’ Who knows what the hell he thought I was doing, but he eventually got my point and packed up. I really am that cheap. Hey, it’s $30! I need that money for tomorrow.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Vaccination Reaction and Little Baby in a Big Highchair

Jelly was a TROOPER getting her shots! She was understandably in pain and totally pissed off (rather than hurt feelings like last time), but it was over quickly and she calmed down right away. I have a new favorite doc at her practice, he was so great with her. She glared at him the entire time – I think she knew what was coming. I managed not to cry, since I realized she was going to look to me during stuff like this, especially as she gets older, and I needed to keep my shit together.
She was ok all day, but as early evening approached she started to feel lousy and got a little warm. She didn’t want to sleep or eat or play, she just wanted to snuggle and suck her fingers, poor little mouse. I took her temperature again (and was much less a baby about it this time) and she was at 101.3, so I called my sister and then gave her a little Baby Tylenol (Jenny, not my sister). I knew she wasn’t feeling well because she went to sleep with a very weak struggle.

We had a huge crashing thunder/lightening storm at 3:30a, which normally would be cool but all I could think was, ‘Oh god don’t wake the baby’. She sighed a few times but stayed asleep until her usual 4a. I did not get up though, and she fitfully slept until 6 and then started to howl, and I figured that was more reasonable than 4 so I should go get her. She was still warm, so I gave her a little more Tylenol and pulled the hot baby into bed with me, with the fan on. She slept a little bit longer, and was feeling better by the time we got up at 7:30. She’s at Nanny’s today so I hope she is doing alright.
The timing was stupid of me, but I was all excited to get the go-ahead from the doctor, so tried giving her a little cereal for dinner yesterday. She wasn’t too sure what to make of it, and was probably starting to run a fever at that point, so we’ll see what happens at our next attempt. Very cute though. I got all compulsive and put together a table of different foods for her to try, where I could document the date and her reaction. While I am looking forward to not spending $200/month on formula, I am sad that she is ready for this next stage. She’s still a baby, but she’s not going to be for very much longer. And it doesn’t matter how many pictures I take, or how many times I just sit and try to hold onto the moment, my first and only is going to grow up and I’m not going to have a baby any more. I’ll miss her very much.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Four Months Old

Check out that mug. And those toes. Don't you just want to pluck her right out of that picture and smother her in kisses? Jelly had her 4-month photo shoot this weekend, in a totally ridiculous dress that her Tata FORCED me to buy. She loved it. And, why not? Soft velour-y arms, a nice fuzzy absorbent collar to catch drool, and a sparkly, silk-and-net skirt. Some day she is going to force me to let her wear stuff like this to the grocery store, and I'm going to totally give in BECAUSE IT'S JUST SO DAMN CUTE!!! Really, it makes me weak. Don't look directly at it!!!
We had a nice, non-flat-tire weekend. There was a yard sale at Mariposa School, which was kinda neat because that's the name of the school my dad taught at for like a billion years, and my sister and I attended for a few. We got there late, but there were still some good bargains (like Baby's First Dishwasher, so I can get her trained good and early). We did the Farmer's Market yesterday, and there was a nice breeze so Jellybean was very happy. I bought persimmons, and promptly threw them out when we got home because they smelled so funky I couldn't even begin to cope with how I was going to eat them or cook them in something. So much for my brave new buy.
It's hard to believe it's almost October. JJ has to go for her shots tomorrow and it makes me sick to my stomach to think how unhappy she's going to be. I'm going to ask the doctor about starting her on solids (gave her a teensy bit of applesauce last night and I thought she was going to get up and walk into the kitchen to find her own spoon) and about her sleeping pattern. I've dropped the 11pm feeding so that she goes into her crib at 9p (unhappily - we play 'rock the baby til she falls asleep, put her in her crib, she sleeps for 10-15 minutes then wakes up SCREAMING BLOODY MURDER because she's so ticked off she's not being held, so pick up the baby and rock her some more, repeat 10 times') and sleeps til 5a - but I think I need to let her fall back asleep instead of rushing in to get her. She's still tired and obviously isn't starving. Gawd, that would be so awesome, if I could sleep from like 10:30 til 6:30. Mmmmm... delicious elusive sleep.

I am still totally in awe of her, I realized yesterday. I was watching her sleep, and despite the calendar (and the c-section scar), still cannot believe she's here, and she's mine, and she's becoming a little person. Her new trick this weekend was to 'fake cough'. There are more clothes that she's outgrown that have to be packed away. I have to start looking for a new car seat. She's just plain awesome.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Countdown Starts

Don't you want to just squeeze this?!
It’s a cold, rainy day. It’s glorious. It is the opposite of a scalding hot, can’t-think-because-it-will-make-me-sweat, summer day. And I am loving it. I snuggled in the wee hours of the dark morning with a baby-in-a-bag, whispering lovies in her tiny shell-pink ears and snuffling her soft almost-gone hair. Then we got dressed quickly in the chilly nursery, giggling nonsense to ‘hurry, hurry, it’s COLD!’ that was very funny to Jelly. Wrapped in fuzzy pink fleece, she kicked and babbled in the kitchen while I made a nice hot cup of Lady Grey, and together we woke up Suki (my laptop), to watch online videos of Princess Chunks. She laughs every time the funny baby in the video laughs, it’s the best entertainment around.

For lunch I made steamy hot creamy tomato-basil soup and perfect OCD grilled cheese for me and Nanny. Yes, you read that right – grilled cheese is another victim to my arbitrary rules. The bread must be pre-treated in warm melty butter before it is cooked, and you have to use AT LEAST 1 ½ Kraft Singles (no other cheese, EVER, I don’t go in for those hippie foccacia-and-gruyere bastardizations), and, of course, the sandwich must be sliced into gooey triangles. It totally hit the spot washed down with a tall cool glass of grape Kool-Aid.

I’m wearing fuzzy pink socks from Aunt Bev. And a fuzzy pink hoodie sweatshirt. And I did more work in the first 2 hours of the day than I have all week. It’s weird, because I remember the cold weather seasons as being the times that were hardest to get out of bed, most difficult to stay awake for. Not so. I slept a little better, and have energy to think about cooking Grandma’s stew or Cincinnati chili for dinner, and am eagerly anticipating getting my hands on that soft warm baby again for some evening TV and hot chocolate. Last night we rocked on the porch for a bottle feeding and heard the geese pass overhead, and I told her, ‘Listen, they’re Canadians, like you!’

I just may be a Northerner.

October is almost here, and that means the Fair, and the Harvest Festival, and Halloween. It means 9 million varieties of apples at the Farmer’s Market, all available for tasting for people like me who have to have their apples crispy and sweet-sharp, perfect for frying with onions and bratwurst or slicing into golden pies or nibbling with mild cheddar. October means Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and family and turkey. And putting up The Christmas Tree.

Just 3 months from today. Happy September 25!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

How Could She Have Changed This Much Already?

Wednesday’s Child is Full of Whoa! and Woe is Me

Jellybean is awesome. Awesome, awesome, awesome. She is an easy laugher (the word ‘goober’ sends her into stitches), is ticklish on every square inch of her chubby little body (especially her neck cleavage), and thinks ‘The Momma Show’ (where I sing to her but insert her name instead of key words, and pretend my hands are puppets) is high entertainment. The Best Baby in the World is officially sleeping through the night (it’s been a week so I can cautiously say that), from around 10p to 5:30 or 6:30. She recently discovered she can make a farty noise by blowing on my arm, so is officially as skilled as a 14-year old boy. And she’s almost bald, it’s hilarious. I look at her and think, ‘Yes, this is EXACTLY what I had hoped having a baby would be like, but never thought I’d get’.

Me, I’m not doing so hot. I was glad I had a phlebitis follow-up appointment yesterday, because Sunday morning I went to pick up Jenny in the carseat to go to the Farmer’s Market and almost passed out. I wisely decided to go lay down for a few hours with her instead. Despite the fact that the littlest angel has done so well with sleeping, I am waking up more than when she was a newborn. With headaches, in the middle of the night. And it’s going on three weeks that I’ve, uh, had some stomach flu-ish issues. So I’m weak and rundown and of course not eating properly and my leg aches etc. etc. I’m a big baby, yes, I know. So the doctor advised me to stop taking the anti-inflammatories for a week (despite the fact he also PRESCRIBED me some), and stop taking the Seasonique, and did some blood work, and we’ll see what happens. I’m also on a nice bland diet and a regimen of vitamins and Pedialyte (the most disgusting beverage in the world – I add Kool Aid singles to it like the grown-up I am). I am going to go ahead and move Jelly into the nursery in the hopes that will help with the sleep, because I really think that’s a big part of it.

Oh, and I got the flu shot for the first time ever. Dr. Jones (isn’t that great?! That’s my new local doctor!) guilted me into it with all the ‘baby this’ and ‘baby that’ talk. I would be very unhappy if I gave Jellybean the flu, so I gave in.

In more ‘I’ve Given Up’ news, I have started making meals that have the word ‘Easy’ or ‘Kid-Friendly’ preceding them, and call for ingredients like Velveeta and frozen hash browns. Dude, seriously, my window for making AND eating dinner is like 30 minutes, tops. I totally feel like a quitter though – I made the Parents Magazine Easy Southwestern Frittata (yes, the opposite of bland, I know, I’m not doing so well with the diet) and it took like 15 minutes and was damn tasty. Don’t judge me. You know you’d love a bite of tasty frittata with hash browns and turkey sausage and egg beaters. And leftovers made a great breakfast sandwich. *sob* My book is going to be called ‘Going from Ouzo Chicken With Orzo to Spam Meatloaf in One Pregnancy’.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Two Kinds of Exciting

It's Wednesday - do you know where your post is?

Things That Irritate Me This Week

Sarah Palin
Casey Anthony
The Vineyard’s Tuesday dinner hours

Things That Are Awesome This Week

The weather in Boston
A new season of ‘House’
Starbucks in the morning
21 hours of sleep so far!
Tomorrow I see Lex/Princess Chunks/Pudge/Jellybean
If you count Sunday as the first day of the week, which some crazy people do, I would also include ‘Lake Jordan’ in things that were totally awesome this week. It was very much a ‘glass-in-the-eye’/’rollercoaster’ type of week, starting with spending time in the Wake Med ER because I apparently have stupid phlebitis (but, thankfully, not a blood clot that is going to rip free and go traveling and kill me on an American Airlines flight) and continuing with a terrific day at Jordan Lake with SPOT (Single Parents of the Triangle). Then I had to go to Boston, which kinda sucks, but is kinda totally awesome because I’ve caught up on my sleep and had some great meals and the weather is GORGEOUS and Monday is the First Day of Autumn! And I think that brings us up-to-date.

Sarah Palin = Book-burner
Casey Anthony = Sociopath
Phlebitis = Ouchy
The Vineyard = Closed on Tuesdays
Work = Just not into it

Weather = 69 degrees, my ideal temperature
'House' = Poor, poor Wilson
Starbucks = Perfect breakfast - Pumpkin Spice Latte and a slice of Pumpkin Loaf
Sleep = Needed it SO bad, so glorious
Jelly = MISS HER, want to squeeze

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Mostly Sound Mind

It’s 9/11, and where did I find myself this morning? On top of Mr. Shaky (insert funny sex joke here), my least favorite rickety ladder in the world, trying to bludgeon the smoke detector in my bedroom with a pair of kitchen tongs. An hour before my appointment with the young easily intimidated lawyer to sign my will.

I guess you do get smarter with age, because I wisely gave up swinging at the 5-am-beeping-alarm and climbed down off the radically tilting ladder, called up Tata, and went and borrowed her much more stable aluminum (or ‘aluminium’ if you’re Loud) ladder. Stupid vaulted ceilings. Stupid Mr. Shaky. I NEED TO GET RID OF IT. Before it sneaks into the house in the middle of the night and falls over on me.

The legal appointment went well, although thank god young Heyward (his real name, seriously) wasn’t in the room when I started reviewing the documents, because I tittered when I saw myself described as the ‘testatrix’. So awesome. The Testatrix. It’s like the perfect mix of dirty words and actions. Yes, I am a 14-year old boy and an idiot. I definitely need to get a fireproof safe that I can instantly lose the combination to.

I ended up taking Jilly to the doctor’s yesterday, despite the fact I could have written down word for word everything he said in advance of the visit. Yes, I’m doing everything I can. No, she’s quite obviously not wasting away from malnutrition and lack of love. Yes, she is the cutest baby in the whole wide world.

The gloomy weather continues, which is not very conducive to staying awake at my desk. I am spending my days propped up by a tonic of Red Bull, Pepsi, and Sweet Tea (no, not mixed together, that’s just gross). The Bean did a little better in her crib last night but is still totally pissed off at being ejected from the nice cozy bassinette. I got to see real tears last night, which ripped a little hole in my grotesquely sappy new-mother heart. It’s apparently much, much easier when it’s not your kid, who knew?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


There are times when it’s easy to lose sight of what you’ve got. We always want more free time, more sleep, a bigger paycheck, a bigger house, a nicer car, a doting partner, a thinner waist. We know that we should be glad to have our health, our friends, our families, but it’s easy to take them for granted.

My dental hygienist, D., who is about the sweetest person I know and has a perfect smile (duh), has been trying to get pregnant for several years now with her equally precious husband. She and my dentist, a single mom, were shocked and amazed when they heard the details of Jenny’s conception, and jumped on the supportive bandwagon immediately. The past few months D. has been going through IVF and fertility treatments, and it’s been agonizing to watch. She’s younger than me (early 30’s) and in otherwise perfect health. At my August visit she was excited because they had 5 viable eggs that looked good, and I was hopeful right along with her. Yesterday she popped in to the exam room to tell me the attempt had failed, and that they’d try again in October. I told her the story of Jellybean barfing on me, and as soon as it was out of my mouth realized how stupid I was.

I’ve become one of those people.

Worse than a Smug Married, I’m a Smug Mother. Despite being single and despite the statistics, I was able to conceive in the quiet and comfort of my own house, free of charge. There were no doctors or shots co-pays. And I got Jelly. D. should have slapped me. I knew the mistake I’d made as soon as I saw her face. Despite her sympathetic laugh, I knew that look all too well. That look said, ‘Don’t you know I would love to have a baby throw up on me? Don’t you understand that I would cherish those missed hours of sleep, delight in those diaper changes? Don’t you see me, going through pain and hope and disappointment and anger and despair, and preparing to do it all over again, and again, to have that burden you bear?’

And there’s no guarantee it will work. She has no way of knowing if months or years of trying will give her the baby she so desperately wants. What if I had not been successful when I was? What if the house situation had fallen apart earlier and faster and I’d moved out and lost my chance? Yes, I’d have my savings account back, but so what? True, I would be caught up on the new movie releases, but who cares?

I need to be grateful every single day. When she’s sick, when I’m sick, when I’m broke, when I’m tired, when I have to leave her to go to Boston, when I’m missing out on ‘firsts’ because she’s with Nanny. Big deal. I HAVE her.

Monday, September 8, 2008

WKRPoo from Cincinnati

The exciting thing about having a baby is that everything in your world is re-defined. You suddenly realize you had no idea what true ‘fear’ was until you are in an airport and lean over to get something from under the stroller, and, as you are sitting up, think to yourself, ‘What if someone walked past and lifted her out in that split second, and she won’t be there when I sit up?’ You realize that your capacity to love and be patient with another person is much, much greater than you (or your friends) would’ve thought. A ‘Monday’ in the past just meant the weekend was over, but now a rough Monday means you wake up to an infant blasting diarrhea two inches away from your face, and after you change her and rinse out her jammies and get her dressed she accidentally sticks her fingers too far down her throat and vomits all over you. Before 7:00 am. Hello, Monday.

So Jenny and I are obviously still under the weather, and I didn’t realize how bad I was until I was taking my first rectal temperature (hers, not mine) and got all dizzy and nauseous. Surprise, surprise, I had a fever also. But life must go on, so I still did the requisite 80 loads of laundry and bottle-washing and got unpacked from the evil trip and cleaned the house etc. etc. And that brings us back to Monday, and being exhausted at work. Seriously, I know that people do this all the time and with less help, but really? Again, thank sweet 8-lb little baby Jesus that Beaner is such a good baby. It makes it extra-sad that she has continued to be sunny and good-natured despite the constant poo-splosions and lack of sleep. SUCH A GOOD BABY. Please, someone make a note to remind me of this when she’s two. And twelve. And sixteen. Oh, and I cried when I took her temperature. Yes, I really am that much of a wuss. I found it to be exceedingly traumatic. I guess I just don’t think it’s right to put something in someone else’s bum without their express permission, no matter how hysterical they seem to think it is or that it is for their own good.

And I also have to go to the dentist this afternoon. Icing on the cake, baby.

Hopefully everyone out there in the internets is having a barf-and-poo –free day. Fingers crossed for my Jenny to get better very, very soon.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Internets Keep on Turning

It’s FRIDAY!!!!

I made it. Jenny made it. The majority of the rest of the world made it. Hallelujah.

Jellybean seems to be feeling ok. Not because she got a lot of sleep, because boy howdy, she did NOT want to go to bed last night. From 9p-12a she was wriggly and chatty and kept making faces at me to try and crack me up. I'm so easy. And then she woke up at 5:30a, a time I shall henceforth refer to as 'Praying for the Sweet Release of Death'. But it's Friday, so I can deal.

I am still on a high from setting up my new wireless network yesterday. Easy peasy, lemon cheesy. I feel like I have so much more control since it wasn’t set up by Loud, who does god-knows-what to networks. Plus I could rename it, so it cracks me up when I’m working and I have an excellent connection to ‘Jellybean’. I even got the Tivo server working again, which had decided it was unhappy for no good reason about the Vonage router going away. I emailed my boss to see if I could expense the new router, but didn’t hear back, which is never a good sign. Ah, well, I tried. Next step is to tackle my stupid printer, which I managed to connect to the network but will still not print wirelessly nor network scan. But at least everything went smoothly and I understood what was going on, and it’s very space-agey-looking, which is nice.

Hannah, huh? As if we need a hurricane this weekend. Not that I care, because I can’t go out and spend money like I normally do on Saturdays, and Sunday was already pre-booked as Jammie Jam. Don’t know about Jammie Jam? That is when you spend an extended amount of time in your pajamas, either late into the day or starting very early in the evening, or sometimes all day, and have poor eating habits and become one with the couch and watch an inordinate amount of ‘Law and Order’ (any flavor) while snuggling your favorite baby. And also you pretend there is no such thing as ‘laundry’ or ‘vaccuming’ or 'Monday'.

Dentist next week, Boston the following week, and Jenny's 4-month appointment on the 30th. Exciting times.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Travel Bug Bites Bean

It’s official. We’re never leaving the house again. It hurts me to see my baby unhappy and in pain, and I hate the idea of giving a 3 ½-month-old Pedialyte.

Jenny apparently picked up a bug or virus or something this past weekend, and has had a fever and some eating problems and some disgusting poo-ing issues (I don’t think that ‘mucous’ and ‘poo’ belong in the same sentence together, EVER). And some sleeping issues. She wanted to wake up at 2:30a and 5:30a and I did not, so we had a difference of opinion. Plus then she was awake from 5:30a until EXACTLY 10 minutes before I had to get up. Barf.

So, yeah, the Cincinnati trip. Well, Beaner was a rockstar. We did all the right things like changing diapers right before boarding and either eating or having a pacifier during takeoff and landing, and otherwise she just slept. It was a lot more work than business travel, however, lugging that stroller etc. through the x-ray machine and juggling a baby. No, no one offered to help. Stupid strangers.
It was nice to see everyone and show off the baby, but it wasn’t oh-it-will-be-a-breeze-because-so-many-people-will-hold-her-for-you like I’d been promised. First of all, she was freaked out and over-tired and a bazillion degrees so she cried at almost everybody. Secondly, people want to hold a happy baby, not change or feed an unhappy baby, and everything was a struggle because we were in a strange place. At one point I was trying to get a bottle ready and people were forming a group around us, watching as she screamed and I sweated, and they kept trying to talk to me (“Wow, looks like you’re having a tough time, bet you didn’t realize you’d have an audience!”) and I just wanted to scream. I finally went upstairs to try to get her to sleep, despite the fact it was even hotter, because at least there wasn’t a parade going by. So, uh, that sucked. Shortly thereafter I realized my throbbing headache was a full-on migraine and things went downhill fast. Relatives started freaking out at me about getting my parents and grandmother home since we were low on designated drivers, and that’s when I unfortunately got a little snippy. I started trying to organize things but the effort of not vomiting was more pressing, so I found my grandmother a ride and then I think I said something to the effect of, “They’re grownups and need to deal with this, Seacrest out”.

The next morning was brunch with the family, which was greasy but fine (the brunch, not the family), and then there was some confusion because my mom and brother and sister went shopping while I sat at my Grandmother’s with The Bean and my father for a few hours. So I didn’t get to spend any time with my youngest sister, who I hadn’t seen in a year. So that blew. Although my dad spent a few minutes with Jelly that were really super-cute, and of course my Grandmother LOVED it.
Dinner that evening was exactly what I didn’t want – more noise and heat and chaos. I was planning to meet my Top 3 favorite cousins for a nice quiet dinner, but everyone ended up deciding to come, so there were 21 of us. Yep, twenty-one. Again, nice to see my family, but I was so maxed out on stress and lack of sleep (did I mention the couch?) and couldn’t drink like everyone else (baby + afraid of triggering another migraine) that it was not a fun evening. I have pledged to be much nicer to teetotalers from now on.
Yes, there were some good things – my cousin’s 10-year old daughter was freaking precious with Jellybean, at my elbow the whole time asking questions and wanting to dress her and give her a bottle. There were some good laughs at dinner, mostly at everyone else’s expense (we’re a cruel people). I got some quiet time with my Grandma. She got to meet Beaner. I got to see my family, albeit briefly. I now appreciate business travel even more. Cousin J held Jelly so I could eat at least one meal on Saturday. I didn’t have to pay for a hotel. Everything went (relatively) smoothly with the flights (I didn’t mention the delay flying out, because it was traumatic).

So now I’m just counting down the hours til the weekend when Jenny and I can get some quality rest and extended jammie time, and I’m going to start worrying about how to cope with Christmas.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

No Place Like Home

The Bean meets Great-Grandma

Rough weekend. Awesome to see everyone, but hot, tired, long, physically exhausting, got a migraine, thanks everyone for your help, Jenny starting to sleep through the night (hurrah!), still got no sleep due to couch (but it was free!), too much travel in such a short time, no one would help me in Security, felt awful for M. plus wanted to scream every time she touched Baby, I was the sober one which wasn't as much fun, felt awful for B. chasing around a very active toddler. Everything was just hard and I'm sure everyone now thinks (if they didn't already) that I am a crazy bitch because I totally started to shut down at about 5 pm on Saturday and am still not back to where I need to be yet. There's not enough Advil in the world for an event like that. And poor Jenny. So hot and loud and scary and exhausting for her. This is one of those times when doing this on my own really, really sucked and made a supposed-to-be-fun weekend miserable. Thank God Beaner is THE BEST BABY IN THE WHOLE WORLD.
More details to follow once I have a little space and perspective on the event happenings so can post less doom-and-gloom-ily. And am more caught up on sleep.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Less Debt, More Filling

Glory, glory hallelujah! No, I did not get sleep last night, it is still more elusive than the mythical ‘unicorn’ or ‘perfect man’. But I did get a call from my cousin’s coworker’s husband (get that?), who is a lawyer, and he is going to file the Termination of Parental Rights for me this November for almost HALF of what the other shyster was going to charge me. That is the best frickin’ news, since I had no idea what magic fairy was going to bestow that cash.

Since we’re talking about it, I suppose some of you would be interested in knowing how dinner went last night. DELICIOUS, of course!! I was a little embarrassed because I ordered spring rolls and ate them before Quiet even got there, and I only arrived 7 minutes before him. But yes, another great meal. Oh, and I suppose you want to know how things went with Quiet? Well, it was AWESOME to see him He looks great, and I know he’s working hard to cook healthy vegetarian meals and stomp around on his Wii Fit (I’m telling you, everyone has one but me), so, go him! It was admittedly a little bit awkward, kind of like first-date-nervousness, because I hadn’t seen him in so long and wasn’t too sure if there were taboo topics or how things would be. But he seemed pretty cool about everything, which was a relief. I think it’s important to keep that communication no matter what, so I’m hoping we can meet up again in a few months. It’s funny because everyone else is like, ‘So is it weird, seeing your baby daddy?’ and I’m like, ‘Huh?! Who? Where?!’, because I really don’t even think of it like that. Quiet is just, well, Quiet, my ol’ pal who helped me out with a favor. I don’t even think of him when I look at Jellybean. It’s ludicrous to think that he’s someone’s father, especially in the context of MY baby, who is mine and mine alone! Hopefully he feels the same – that he can look at pictures of the Bean and think, ‘Aw, that’s a cute baby that she had all by herself, how nice for her’.

And he’s going to post his Bean Burrito recipe for me, so that’s exciting to look forward to.

And thanks again to Cousin J, awesome babysitter to the stars, who did her best to play with sleepy Bean and try to keep her awake. And I didn't even leave her pizza money or anything, I'm such a bad mother.

Only TWO DAYS til we rock the ‘Nati!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Asian Sleep Torture with a side of Basil Tofu

Sorry about my lack of posting this week (and the lack of updated photos on Jellybean’s site), but it’s been a very rough sleep week. So rough that I first spelled ‘posting’ as ‘poasting’. Which would be a combination of writing to a blog while cooking a chicken, I guess.

My best guess is that Jenny is still messed up from being away for a week and being sick. Also, I made the critical mistake in thinking that because she slept well in the crib for a nap, she’d do ok for the long haul. No dice. Every two hours last night. Literally. It was like back in the newborn days, only I was totally unprepared so it was like a slap in the face with a cold bass every time she woke up. And by ‘bass’ I mean fish, not musical instrument. Although, both would apply.

So I’ve got this ridiculously crazy week of work and am headed for the long weekend, in which I have to fly with a three month old, on a low reserve of the good stuff. I think I need to go back to my pregnancy plan of napping during my lunch break or else I’m going to crash. I already ended up with a migraine Monday night and do NOT want a repeat of that. Luckily the delicious prescription Ibuprofen I have squirreled away from my c-section surgery took care of it, but it was still a few hours for relief. During which time I was exceedingly grateful that the Bean is such a quiet, easy child, as I limply lay on the couch wishing for death and she happily watched The Big Black Box That Often Has Loud Moving Pictures but Only Seems to Show Law and Order Episodes.

So tonight I am having dinner with Quiet, which I am really looking forward to. It’s been like a gazillion years since I’ve seen him (just after I moved into the house in March, I think) and he’s always a good one for the gossiping. Plus we’re going to my favorite Thai place. Cousin J is going to watch out for Little Rotten, who is apparently good as gold and sleeps for days when she is with anybody else so things should go smoothly. Then tomorrow is lunch with the girls, and then it’s Friday, and then we leave! Argh! Don’t get me wrong, I am delirious with excitement about getting to see all my family and show off the baby. Just a little stressed about the trip itself. There are only so many times I can re-read Delta’s website.

I'm not this cute at 2 am

Thursday, August 21, 2008

A Better Bean, a Tragic Menu Choice, Some Happy Cocktails and a Lovely Evening

Little sickly

Beaner is better, I guess, I am still not there so am still guilt-ridden and worried about her. I know everyone is taking good care of her and she’s getting daily baths and medication and stuff, but still. Hey, 24 hours til I land back in Raleigh, that’s exciting! Her poor long-suffering
Tata not only got poo on her shirt last night, Jenny jetted all over her bed (soaking through a onesie, jammies, down comforter, sheets, etc.). She must really like her.

Last night I drowned my sorrows at a totally awesome vineyard, Nashoba Valley Winery. No, seriously, it was unbelievable. We did the fixed price menu, which was $45 for three courses and included a different glass of wine with each course. The most awesome-est was the Strawberry Rhubarb. Mmmmm… pie wine. My coworker has promised to send me monthly shipments. The food was fantastic as well. I always get a little excited when the chef sends out a complementary amuse bouche. Here's a picture so you know where to go for my wedding reception.

The vineyard. Freakin' gorgeous.

The previous night’s theme, however, was apparently ‘White Trash’, and, sad to say, it was not as exciting as I had hoped. I decided to give in to my KFC craving and went all-out, and boy, was it disappointing. The local chicken establishment must not move a lot of original recipe poultry parts, since the pieces I got were dry and pitiful. There was not a drip of grease to be found. The potatoes tasted funny, the slaw was soupy, and I decided to not even attempt the biscuit. Plus the MSG-riddled flesh kept me awake an extra hour than I would have liked.


I found the local liquor store!! It’s really super shady and seedy, in a lousy part of town in a crappy strip mall in a terrible neighborhood. I actually considered taking my laptop into the store with me because guys sitting in their cars were eyeballing me. I panicked and bought whatever was sitting at the cash register in a mini bottle, which ended up being several varieties of berry Pucker, a white chocolate Godiva, and a Skyy Lemonade vodka. I literally skipped out to the car, I was so excited. My next trip I have decided I am going to get a bottle of olives and some vermouth and a really good vodka and have dirty martinis every night. Too bad the hotel doesn’t have a blender.

My sister finally released long-awaited pics of the heir to the throne, and boy, is he a cute one. He is a perfect mix of his father, his sister, and his own person. In one picture he even looks a little bit like my Jenny. All these dark-haired babies! He’s a big one, too. I am worried that some of the sleepers I’ve picked up won’t even fit him now. I should have known better and bought GL (Giraffe Linebacker) sizes. I can’t wait to see him. It kills me that it will be 4 months and he’ll be a totally different person.

Nathan Cael, 10-lb whale

At some point I should post on what a crazy week this has been for having long-forgotten people get in touch with me (my ex-boyfriend from like 5 years ago! my friend Dana from like 8 years ago!) but I've taken up too much of your precious interweb time already. No post tomorrow, I'll be traveling (huzzah!), so have a good weekend.