Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Tata Blog!

As many of you know, Tata’s niece CC has been visiting for the past few weeks, and is generally pretty awesome. I’ve had a lot of fun hanging out with her, although not as much as Jellybean; I think Jelly believes that CC is her newly adopted big sister, and totally adores her. We’ll all be sad when she leaves to go back home in two days, although Tata has felt the stress of raising a tween and will (initially) feel some relief.

CC and I thought it would be funny if she documented the goings-on of The Ta while she was here, and she decided it would not be fair to the world to keep the results to ourselves. To be totally fair, though, I also have to include a short list that The Ta was keeping on CC (although it’s much funnier to be mean to Tata, so her list is way longer). CC apparently once fell asleep in the Pack 'n Play. And doesn't like to help clean up dog poo. The End.

Please keep in mind that I have only made minor spelling corrections to the nicely hand-printed list CC passed along. And, uh, that it was written by a tween living with The Ta, so there’s lots of talk about poo. Young girls, I’m telling you, they are harsh critics. I can’t wait until Jellybean sees me like this.

Without further ado, I give you…

UThe Tata Blog

A guest post by CC Y

Critics rave, "Hottest blog spot ever!"

• She looked like she was drunk and she kept on slipping on the carpet [editor’s note: sweetie, she probably WAS drunk]
• She picked up a pillow and smelled it
• She makes ‘granny grunts’ when bending over [editor’s note: in my family we call them ‘fatty grunts’]
• She talks during my shows and just comes into the room to fart
• She believed there was peanut oil that contained no peanuts
• She looks at her dogs’ butt holes
• (on Craigslist ) Ray: I’d like to buy your Pearl; Tata: Would you like to buy my Pearl?
• She wears striped underwear 6 times/week
• At Applebee’s Tata’s pants were see-thru so everyone could see the striped underwear
• When listening/not listening to ‘Halo’ Tata acts out the song
• Tata’s nicknames are ‘Al’ and ‘Titty Tata’
• She gets mad/dying of laugher when I go onto youhoogle.com and type ‘Titty Tata’ as her homepage
• Tata likes to announce to me that she has a turtle head everyday
• Tata tells the dogs to drop the deuces outside
• She likes to pose for the camera with her flashy middle fingers
• She picks through the poo to see what the dogs ate
• The old-lady Tata, likes to watch East Enders
• She gets embarrassed when I fart on her conference calls (again) oops! Heehee!
• Tata tells me that she’s going to fart and then she cries because it went up the front
• After Tata reads a ghost book it’s FUN to scare her!
• Tata gets mad when there is secrets between me and Jellybean Mama
• Tata loves to nap when supposed to be working!
• Tata goes outside with plastic bags and picks up poo
• She doesn’t flush the toilet
• She likes to tell me what happens in the ghost books before I read them
• She is dumb when answering zoom questions. CC: What more does ‘Zoom’ show?; Tata: Closer stuff (obvious!)
• Tata doesn’t steady the camera well
• LOVES to swear with her coworker
• Likes to slip on ice
• Likes to pick her toes
• She also likes to suck on her pinky
• Tata gets jealous when the dogs are with me
• She eats like the baby Jenny [editor’s note: not true, she is MUCH messier than Jenny]
• Tata likes the gossip and all the drama at work (starts it sometimes)
• Tata is ALWAYS dropping the f-bomb!
• Tata likes to goof off at work
• She walks around in her underwear, and her sporty sports bra! Not pretty
• Tata looks like a monster before coffee time
• She wears monkey pajamas
• Tata wears a shirt with A LOT of boob-age (a lot!) boobs falling out (a lot!) Boobalicious!
• She sometimes sports that see-thru top look! You know! Hee hee!
• Tata crops herself out of pictures when she thinks she has rolls
• Tata believes she has fur kids
• When trying to back into the driveway, she was in the wrong gear
• Tata uses Strap Perfect to get one cup size bigger!
• Tata yells at the Smooth Away commercials because it doesn’t work
• Tata likes me to praise her for pooping because we praise the dogs for pooing
• Tata makes bad stops at stop signs
• Tata loves pics taken with her on the toilet, except when they are for Jellybean Mama

Still reading? Sucker. You really are trying to avoid doing anything else.
God help you if you have a young girl.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Someone Please Get My Car Inspected For Me

Who's the big kid?!
Phew! That’s all I’ve got to say. What’s with the past two Mondays? I’m having too much fun, I guess. It was another busy weekend, with all kinds of stuff going on. In order, the critical updates:

1. Friday was the hearing. Jellybean is now fully, legally, 100% mine, as declared so by a court of law. Can you believe a judge met me and still ruled that?! I was TOTALLY meek and very professionally dressed, as you can imagine, in a navy dress suit and HEELS and PEARLS. It was ridiculous. I had to be sworn in! I didn’t even think about that, it was cool, I had to raise my right hand and the whole bit. It took forever for my case to be called since there was a very full docket (see, here I am, slinging the lingo now). But it’s over and done and official, and Quiet has to sew a scarlett ‘CA’ on all his clothes for ‘Child Abandoner’ (his joke, which I have stolen for your enjoyment and reading pleasure). In case you're wondering who the heck she looks like in that picture above, it's all donor. I hardly ever see Quiet in her, and mostly just try not to think about it too much, but he is a good-looking guy luckily, and once in a while I catch a look that is pure him.
2. Tata’s niece CC and I went and saw ‘Harry Potter’. It was long. It was good. The Dumbledore scene made me catch my breath even though I knew it was coming. CC and I almost got in a car accident on the way home, some jerk in a fast truck crossed entirely into our lane going around a curve on a wet road in the dark. Luckily, I’ve been hit that way before so was quick to react and we were fine. CC was a total rockstar Friday night and babysat The Bean so Tata and I could go see ‘G-Force’. Yes, I used my invaluable babysitter time to see a movie about spy guinea pigs. Everytime Zach Gafflinakalamadingdong was on the screen I burst out laughing because, really, how can anyone see ‘The Hangover’ and NOT laugh when they see him? CC did an awesome job, and helped watch Jelly again on Sunday when I shopped the consignment sale, and I’ve got video of Princess Von Fattybottom walking. To CC. Still not to me or Nanny. Rotten child.
No walkies for you, mama! Just my BFF.
Also, CC wrote a guest blog post, which I will get typed up and posted shortly. It’s basically a list of all the weird, gross, crazy, embarrassing things Tata does all day long, as observed by a tween. It’s hilarious, you’ll love it.

Yep, I'm a dork. Check out that sweaty beach-napping baby though.

3. Jellybean and I went to the lake again, and once again I tried to drown her. I can’t even talk to people about it. I thought it would be fun to play on an inflatable toy, and for a brief time it was. She was sitting up on one of those raft-type things, I was in the water opposite her, holding onto her, at about shoulder depth. Then Jelly kicked her fat little slippery foot right out of my hand, and she toppled over backwards and upside-down underwater. It was awful. Time stopped. The two steps I took through the water to get to her felt like forever. And she sank so fast. I had time to think, ‘All these people around me, and no one can help me quick enough’. I grabbed her ankle just as she was disappearing from sight into the dark water beneath me and hauled her up. She’s a Jellyfish, so she just sputtered a bit and looked indignant, didn’t even cry, and wanted to go right back to dunking her head under. I may cut the raft into little tiny pieces. Let’s never speak of this again.
4. Sunday morning was the big exhausting consignment sale. I sold a lot of my stuff, so we’ll see how well I did in a few weeks when I get my check. I picked up a lot of fall/winter items for Jelly, but was worried about sizes so got mostly leggings and tops, a super-cute sailor coat, some jammies. I also picked up some stuff for her for Christmas – a big ‘Fur Real’ dog, lots of hand puppets, a dolly and some of those toy bottles that look like the milk/juice is disappearing when you tilt ‘em. I love those things.

I hope everyone has a good week, and I’ll post the awesome Tata post probably tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Summer in the City. Limits.

Here at Casa de Haricot we've been extremely busy, getting annexed by the City of Raleigh and having cousins visit and preparing for another big consignment sale. We've also enjoyed some more time with CC, who is not only a hilarious Tata-Tattler, but is also a first-class jellysitter.
Jellybean, interestingly, was not as interested in my cousin's kids as I thought she'd be. And she was only mildly impressed with my cousin. My cousin's husband, on the other hand, well, that was another story. Jelly, who normally DOES. NOT. LIKE. MEN. was extremely fond of Dan. It helps that he's one of like a million kids, so he knows how to butter up a little bean. Don't tell my dad, but she even sat in his lap one evening for a snuggle! It's nice to see her with a good male role model, since that's one of the few things (other than a kind, sympathetic mother) she's lacking. I guess anyone who lets her gnaw their fingers is ok in her book.
Speaking of sympathetic, my poor little pudding pop had her first major blood-spouting injury. She fell and clipped her chin on her little red rocking chair, putting a few top teeth into a bottom lip. There was blood all over her, all over me after I scooped her up, and her lip was ENORMOUS. Happily, I did NOT fall apart, and it's nice to know I have zero problems with my child gushing the red stuff all over the place. A popsicle later, she was just fine. Yes, I took a picture of her, because that's the kind of mother I am.
We had an exhaustingly hot and busy weekend with our guests. The Flea Market, Farmer's Market, Market Market (aka 'Grocery Store', aka 'Red Dog', aka 'Dirty Food Lion'). Sunday we spent the afternoon at the lake, and had beautiful weather for it. That Jellyfish sure does love the water. She was waving and blowing kisses at the boats. Yesterday morning the relatives departed for Myrtle Beach, and I'm very jealous. I need to take Jellybean to the ocean! It's already August! Omg, she's 14 months old today!
This morning I dropped off approximately one hundred kajillion items for the Kids Exchange sale coming up this weekend. You wouldn't believe the size of this place, or the stuff they have. There were something like 7,000 people that attended the last sale. Since it's so competitive, I priced things ridiculously low in the hopes of selling more stuff. My latest idea for what to do with the money I make is to get another round of professional photos done - when my parents are visiting next! Wouldn't that be freaking AWESOME?! Just imagine, a professionally done pic of me and my mum and Jellybean! S&G Photography, if you're reading this, pencil me in for a tentative date in late October, and I'll call you to confirm when my parents make their travel plans.

Friday morning will be the (hopefully, final) hearing for Jenny's custody case. My lawyer sent me a 2-page document of the questions he's going to ask me in front of the judge, to prepare. Gulp. It's mostly pretty basic stuff, like 'State your full name for the record', but there are also things like, 'What in your opinion is the best course of action for Jennifer's well-being?' (answer: to terminate Quiet's rights). It's so weird. And it just makes me think even more about that side of Jellybean's family, the Secret Side that I'm not allowed to reveal Jelly to. Does she look like any of them? Does she have any of their mannerisms? Is one of them a growler and scratcher, like my sweet darling delicate flower? As she gets older hopefully it will get easier and not more difficult to put those thoughts aside, since I need to be able to help her with not having those answers herself. And that time will come before I know it. 14 months already, that's just crazy!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

If It's Thursday, It Must Be Somebody's Birfday

Happiness is a jar of Canadian candy on my desk
Thank you all, my loyal Beanheads, for your great ideas. Unfortunately I was reminded late yesterday afternoon that TODAY was Brittney's 1-year anniversary, so I made an emergency run to Target and put together a 'travel giftpack' for her. My theme was, 'Something You Need', since, uh, we need her. She's getting ready to go to UT this weekend for her brother's wedding, and she is totally a last-minute packer, so I got a really nice travel valet case (one of those that has lots o' zippered pockets that you can hang up) and bought all kinds of things to fill it with. Like travel wipes, and Neosporin To Go, and shampoo/conditioner/eye makeup remover, etc. Nothing too exciting, but I was able to keep it under $50 and she'll definitely be able to use it. Jellybean and I dug out my Fiskars Embosser and made her a GORGEOUS card, in black and white with a baby pic of Jelly from a year ago on the front. I wrote her a nice little sappy note inside that was very heartfelt. Hopefully she knows that we appreciate her! I can still remember that first week, when she took Jenny to her house for the day, how sick to my stomach I felt because OMG A TOTAL STRANGER TOOK MY BABY.

Really, I am just so very thankful everything turned out.

Here are some pics taken in the last week or so. Tata's niece 'Sissy' and Jelly and I hung out at our favorite pool. It was a little overcast, which made for some cool looking pics.
This morning I dug out the travel stroller for nanny to take with her to the wedding, and the kids decided it was the most fun toy ever.

Happy Birfday, Tata!

Jellybean celebrates with a Cheese Grits Facial at the Haricot Spa

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Celebrating One Year of Someone Else Raising My Baby

Alright, Jellybean Fans (we need to come up with a cool name for you, like 'Claymates' or 'Potterphiles', only way less lame - how about, 'Beanheads'? No? Too insulting?), I need your help; one week from Friday will mark the anniversary of my awesome, sweet, Jelly-loving Nanny arriving at Le Maison de Haricot. One year she's been with us, can you believe that? Let me rephrase so you can understand the significance; for ONE WHOLE YEAR, someone has lived with me for five days a week, WITH ME, a known crazy person, and had me for a boss. Me. Quirky, crazy, and foible-licious. Bossy, hypersensitive, critical, and extremely unpredictable when it comes to the life and times of Jellybean-raising. So I need to come up with something really, really, nice for her.

I figure I'll 'help' Jenny make her some sort of cutesy hand-made card, with like handprints or footprints or boogers or something. And of course it goes without saying that there will be homemade cake of some kind. But what else? A gift certificate doesn't adequately say, 'I Love That You Love My Child and Take Real Good Care of Her So That I Never Worry'. I would never buy her accessories, or books, or music. She rents a tiny room, so I don't want to get her anything that will add to the clutter. And the house isn't hers, so anything like a magnetic fun-foam picture frame for the fridge is out of the question (you laugh, but I adore making fun-foam magnetic picture frames. You just may be on the receiving end one day, so watch out).

Please, please give me your best most brilliantest ideas for a terrific individual.

Here are some stats on her to help you out:
  • She's Mormon (so no porn or caffeine)
  • She has very pretty shoulder-length dark hair that she straightens (I just wanted to point out that I made the tragic mistake of hiring a good-looking nanny, and I've been very unhappy with my scraggly dishwater-brown hair lately)
  • She is usually in jeans, a polo, and flip-flops (if you got barfed on all day long, so would you)
  • She has a 14-month old baby boy who has a stinky butt (seriously, that dude empties a room)
  • She roadtrips to Virginia frequently to visit her Baby Daddy, whom she is engaged to (so maybe some sort of cheesy wedding planner? The wedding won't be for a few years, less or more depending on good behavior)
  • She doesn't like a lot of TV, or read any magazines, or have many hobbies other than Being a 21-Year Old Single Working Mother Just Struggling to Make it Through Each Day
  • She listens to country music
  • She doesn't like massages or mani/pedis (weird, huh?)

So there you have it. Please help.

In other news, Tata's niece is in town, and it's been a blast hanging out with her. She's very sweet with Jelly, and The Bean adores her. She even shared a booger with her, which we thoughtfully left at the swimming pool for others to appreciate.

Fletcher and Sissy, Bestest Buds, back when I had much happier hair

Monday, July 13, 2009

Storms Suck

Weather system giving me splitting headaches and making me want to barf.

Weekend was fun but not long enough.

Will post more later when typing doesn't make me pray for death.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Over the River and Through the Woods Part Deux

Like I said, the first week of vacation was hot and sunny. We spent a lot of time at my folks’ trailer, which is awesome. You get to meet all the other crazy summer people. By my third visit, my brother-in-law was suitably impressed with my advanced knowledge of the trailer park gossip as I called out greetings to passers-by. Jellybean was re-nicknamed Jellyfish, since she didn’t ever want to leave the water. I bought her one of those awesome floaty toys and she found it utterly despicable; she couldn’t put her face in the water and drown, so obviously it was utter crap. Which was for the best, since yesterday I learned it had been recalled. So I guess she just knew better than the rest of us? She greatly preferred being thrown back and forth between me and Grandpa, who threw out his shoulder hefting around Von Fattybottom.
My awesome brother, Uncle Dancey, did a LOT of this

My sister N and I both celebrated birthdays, so we had a combo party. We had a great cookout with my mom’s Totally Freaking Awesomely Delish Potato Salad, Aunt M read stories, Uncle Dancey walked Jelly around some more, and poor Jelly got all overheated and freaked out and I think homesick, and we had to go sit in the car until she calmed down. But it was great to have all the family together.

Coming back from the Farmer's Market/Street Fair

One of the most fun days was spent at the tiny local zoo with Nana (my mum has decided on that for her moniker). It was weird being there, in the town where I went to college. The zoo was kinda pitiful, with like two animals (a camel and a meerkat); they seemed to have blown their budget on a new awesome splashpad. For a totally free playspace, it totally rocked. Jellyfish and I squeezed our sweaty little bodies into swimsuits and had a blast.

They have a TRAIN!!!! I LOVE trains!

On the way home we stopped at a local dairy and I got the best freaking ice cream ever, called something like 'Algonquin Canoe' (the reason I ordered it, obviously), maple-flavored with chunks of fudge and love and caramel and stuff.

There were lots of nice relaxing opportunities the second week, Where it Started to Rain and Did Not Stop, for reading novels, watching movies, going out to dinner sans baby. I mostly shopped at the liquor store (they had the most delicious Blackberry/Lychee Vodka Cooler EVER) and listened to my father try to explain everyone's backstory on 'Mad Men', which I do not watch.

The best news is, working from their place was pretty uneventful. My brother did accidentally pick up the phone when I was on one conference call, but hung up quickly. The basement was a cool, quiet place to work, and Jelly enjoyed her time with her Nana and Boppa. This means that I will hopefully be able to do the trip again next summer, possibly for longer (if my parents' food budget can handle it).

Trip Video Diary - NC Bound

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Trip Video Diary - Canada Bound

Over the River and Through the Woods Part I

I made the tragic, horrendous mistake of leaving for our Great Northern Adventure shortly after lunch. In my uneducated head, I thought this was brilliant; Jellybean would take a nice long nap, have a snack, watch some DVDs, and drift off peacefully to sleep in the carseat. What happened was an extremely short nap, me throwing pretzels at her bottomless maw, me wrenching my shoulder from constantly picking up toys that she threw all over the car, and her screaming herself to sleep because OMG I’VE BEEN IN THE CAR A ZILLION YEARS AND I’M EXPECTED TO SLEEP HERE, TOO?! This wasn’t the worst part, though. We arrived at the hotel around 11, and Jenny woke up excitedly. Bright lights?! People talking?! Waiting ½ hour for the pack and play to come up to the room?! This is awesome! Sleeping in said pack and play, however, was not on her agenda. She hollered and kicked and sobbed and finally, being a business traveler in my other life who would have freaked out to have a screaming child in the room next door, I yanked her into bed with me. You know how that went. 1:30 am was what the cruel, cruel clock read when she finally settled down and stopped shoving her fingers in my eyeballs.

The next morning greeted us with drizzle and car exhaust, but, undaunted, we sallied forth. It was basically a lot of driving in rain and traffic, not much else to tell. Jelly was awesome, considering I had to change her diapers in pouring rain on the front seat in random parking lots several times (yes, that was great, thank you for asking) and, well, that she was in a car for an extra few hours due to fighting our way across Toronto.

The grandparents and aunts and uncles were thrilled to see us, and we had a great trip. We slept better and ate better than we have since, well, forever. Jenny slept an unheard of 8p-8a, with two 2-hour naps daily. Grandpa made homemade waffles. Grandma took us to the zoo. Uncle Dancey walked Jellybean EVERYWHERE.
I'm not so sure about this place...

This place is AWESOME!!!!!

The first week of our trip was hot and sunny, perfect weather to be at the trailer. The lake was gorgeous and refreshing, except for the 3 feet of yellow mustard-like pollen we had to wade through. Jelly’s nose basically had a Kleenex attached to it the whole trip, poor lil’ bit. The second week of the trip was cool and rainy, which I actually didn’t mind one bit. It meant lots of reading, and relaxing, and just hanging out. And eating poutine.

The 'Baby of the Lake'

Videos should be up soon, make sure to watch for the 'Ketchup On My Dirty Face' scene, or my least proud moment, 'Lip-Synching to Aqua'. If I'd been thinking about my vast internet fan base I would have at least put on some eye liner or something. And stay tuned for Part II, already in progress.

Monday, July 6, 2009

We're BACK!

It's ok, everyone, calm down, we're back and I changed the blog background back so that you don't all go blind, and The Bean is fine and I survived and everything is right with the world once more. I am going to have to take some time to adequately summarize and grossly exaggerate the events of our trip, so bear with me as I get out a few novellas over the next few days for your reading enjoyment.

In short, Jellybean was THE BEST BABY EVER. Seriously. She was a world-class traveler, and never once fought being put back into the Cheerio-laden torture device no matter what leg of the journey we were on. There was some totally understandable mild fussing when she was tired or OMG WHY AREN'T WE THERE YET, times when I felt like doing some light crying myself. But considering the travel days averaged 9-10 hours each, for two days in a row, she was awesome. We had a wonderful visit with my family, and a nice mix of hot/sunny - cool/rainy weather, perfect for both swimming and doing some reading. She's definitely glad to be home, but is also showing signs of missing the grandparents and having some trouble readjusting to the schedule.

More to come soon, so stay tuned loyal followers!
To tide you over;
French Fries in another state are so exciting!
(check out that awesome retro high chair)
Canada, watch out!
Yeah, so it's cool and beautiful and peaceful and has great healthcare, big deal