Monday, February 20, 2012


The day before yesterday, you stood up. And then you did it again. And again. And again. Let me explain in detail. You crawl up, and assist yourself with something else, typically me as I sit on the floor, and then you push yourself back onto your own and throw your arms up in the air like Superman! You wobble, and fall forward or onto your butt. I clap and make a big deal about it and you continue to repeat it.

The day after, and today, you haven't been doing it quite as much, but often enough that it lets me know you will be getting the hang of your own balance quite soon enough. I'm so proud, I have to say. I'm really looking forward to your development. I know some parents say enjoy the time you have, and I do every single moment. I remind myself that as you grow older, I will only trade one set of joys/obstacles, for new ones. Still, I suppose that is the excitement of watching a child grow - being so anxious to see the next steps. I cannot wait until you realize that to get off the couch you have to go feet first, rather than head first. I think it will be awesome, because I will be able to put you up beside me and not have to worry about the tumbles you take. Still, I'm sure that's quite some time off.

Also, you've been naked the past two days. I'm sorry I haven't taken you out, but you had a horrible rash. I feel for you, because I think you must be having outbursts because you are so uncomfortable. So we've been allowing you to run around nude to let yourself air out in the open. You seem to love it, as I'm sure lots of babies do. Plus, I've noticed that you are more aware, even more upset, about when you pee. It's given me a bit of an idea to try. My friend, Pat, told me she did this with her son at an early age... that since you recognize when you are peeing, I should get a little potty, and give you nude time and get you used to the idea of when you need to head to the little potty. Yes, you are a bit young, but why not? It certainly couldn't hurt, especially since we are together most of the day. I will be sure to let you know how it goes, but in the meantime, I promise I will take you to the park in the next few days. Your father is off tomorrow and Wednesday, so perhaps we can all go together.

Below: I loved your duck tub! It quacked in such a cute way we enjoyed mimicking it! However, I have had to retire the tub since you can now climb out of it, so it's back to the big tub for you. (January 2012)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

A Day in the Life...

I should have taken you to the park today. I've been beating myself up a bit lately, because I keep thinking you need more stimulation, more attention. I suppose that's pretty typical of most parents, especially when they know they've been a bit grumpy lately, and I have been. It's not you, by any means, or your father, it's me. The fact that I've noticed too, makes me feel even worse. Not sure what's causing it, though it could be a few things. Your father says it sounds like I just need a good break. Not an hour or few hours break, but a nice day. A day to clean, to sit at home, and just bask in the cleanliness for a bit, veg out on a game or watch some movies, to have the leisure to fall asleep on the couch if I desire and not have to worry about who needs what. Then again, my mother also suggested maybe it's a reaction to chocolate. She has reactions to it, such as nightmares, having bad moods, and said this came about after the birth of my brother. Oh I hope she's wrong! I have, though, decided to give it up for a few days and see if it helps. (I had been eating a lot lately with Valentine's Day and all).

Below: A day at the park! Also, if I haven't already mentioned it, it's been a week since you last had a chupi! This is because I get too lazy to keep looking for them since you always throw them all over the house. Chupi is officially gone! (January 2012)

 With that in mind, let's talk about what your mom does on a typical day. At nine, my first alarm goes off. I catch a few zz's and by nine thirty, my second alarm is going off. If you wake up earlier than that, I try to get you to rest, but sometimes I end up spending that time just fighting with myself over whether or not I will be able to go back to sleep at all, and how I should just get up already! So, at nine thirty a.m., I'm up and prepping to work out. You stay with your father, who usually changes you and let's you play while he tries to sleep a little longer. I work out for about an hour, after which I vacuum the living room floor so any dirt from the day before is clean and gone. I then take the typical shower, shaving, putting on makeup. After that, if your father hasn't already dressed you I do, and take you out into the living room where your toy box is. I prepare your morning breakfast, which is a shake. Sometimes you drink a lot, sometimes just a little. For me, then it's on to straightening up the basics. Any dishes that didn't get done, any cups or cans that are left out all need to be sorted, the cats need their breakfast, the littler box cleaned. I sometimes sweep up outside, or begin loads of laundry (which I do about three times a week). I sit and play with you for a bit, or if you're alright by yourself it's time to prepare breakfast for your father and myself. I also work on making his lunch for work, which is leftovers from the night before, or a sandwich, along with cut up apples and peeled cucumbers.

Once breakfast is done, a huge weight is lifted. I get to sit down, maybe share a few bites with you, and veg out for a moment with your dad. After I wash the dishes used for breakfast and decide what I'll be cleaning that day. Most days I am tidying the bed because your father is up, collecting clothes that have been left about the house and putting things back in their proper place. If I've already been working on laundry, around that time it's done so I can sort it and put it away. If there's nothing pressing, sometimes your father will want to run a few errands. Your nap schedule has you getting cranky around noon to one, so by then I'm getting you ready for a nice nap. You wake up in a n hour or two, and by that time your dad is just about off to work. Once your father leaves, it's our day. I try to have some time with you. I'll lay on the floor, sometimes while a movie plays, and let you climb all over me, or I will toss soft blocks at you and make you laugh. I try to take you to the park at least two to three times a week to get you out of the house. There, I take you to the swings, because you love the swings, and if there are no children occupying the forts you crawl all over those under my supervision. I help you go down the slides a few times, and then, if the weather has not been muggy, I can take you to a grassy patch and let you explore nature. It sounds like a lot, but since you are so small, park time usually only lasts thirty minutes to an hour before we are on our way back home. I feed you your snacks throughout the day, and share some of my food with you for lunch. At around five, it's time for your second nap. I usually get tired around this time and conk out for a little while with you. When we wake up, I'm trying to clean whatever room it is that I need to for the day, or get a head start on dinner. Sometimes I manage to veg out too, but around eight, it's time for your bath. Bath time doesn't last too long. Most of the time I clean you up and then allow you to play in the water for a bit with your toys. When your bath is over, I brush your teeth. I then get myself ready for bed in clothing at least, and allow you to run around the house naked for about twenty minutes before I attempt to sneak a diaper on you.

As night draws in, I become more relaxed, and start to write, have a glass of wine, or finish up dinner. At ten, I work on putting you to bed. Some days are worse than others, and I understand that. Being a human, I don' expect you to always fall asleep right on time, however as a parent, I realize I need to get a little more strict with bed time. You can lay there awake as much as you like, but running around isn't really an option. Tonight it took me a whole hour to get you to bed!

After bed, I clean up your toys, picking them up and tossing them into the toy box. I put away any other things that might be cluttering the floor, and make sure everything is decent for when dad comes home. Then, it's all about the relaxation, the writing, the enjoyment of the evening, before I get to bed around one thirty in the morning, ready to start the next day.

So, I hope this doesn't sound too boring for you. I'm certain it probably wasn't the most entertaining thing to read, but I just wanted to share things from my perspective this time, in hopes that you will understand that sometimes, even though you don't always see me as much as you want, that you know I am thinking dearly of you. Know that, if in the future there are things I have failed at such as... oh I don't know... maybe I didn't read to you enough, or maybe I should have been teaching you math every single day... I am human, just like you, and I did try my very best for the home and family. That's what we are, a family. We are a unit, but we are each individuals, and we have to work our hardest but also make sure we don't lose our identity in the process. I hope you understand.

Oh, even just yesterday I was realizing that I sleep eight hours a night. It never occurred to me just how long eight hours really is! I imagine my body, lying there for minute after minute, hour after hour, and I wonder all the things I could manage to get done if I just didn't need to sleep!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Ground down...

Please monkey, stop grinding your teeth! Please! Your front teeth started to come in with a bang about a month ago. Four of them, the two front ones and those directly to the side. However, since then, you have taking a liking to grinding the center left (the right hasn't come in all the way yet) and the bottom teeth. It's a horrible sound, like a vile squeaking! Your father jokes around about how you must have gotten the bad habit from me, because you know, I grind my teeth at night sometimes when I am incredibly stressed. I'm sure it's just a phase that you're passing through since you've discovered that you've got chompers on top and bottom now, but even so the sound paralyzes me.

 Above: That's you and Beowulf. The cats each express their love for you in their own way. Draco tries to teach you how to be gentle, and Beowulf adores sleeping right against you. (January 2012)

That said, you are such a happy baby in general. We finally let go of trying to spoon feed you a couple months ago. It just didn't seem right, but since I get lots of free baby food from WIC, I decided to at least put some of it to good use. The meat baby food we mix with the dry cat food once a day. They have beautiful coats and have a nice weight going on. Certainly I hope no one takes offense to this, as I'm sure many people would abhor the idea of feeding cats unused baby food. They way I look at it, the cats are part of this family too, and if I can give them something that will help them be healthy, why not? It's certainly not going to waste and family members I love enjoy it. Anyway, the fruit baby food I mix up with a bit of yogurt and give to you in a straw sippy cup for breakfast. You seem to like it, even if you don't always eat the whole thing. The point is you get to drink your smoothie at your own pace, and there's no one trying to force feed you from a spoon. You get lots of snacks throughout the day, such as Organic Puffs, which are little sweet puffs. You don't quite have the hang of grabbing them so well with just two fingers, in fact you like to grab a handful (I call you piggy) and try to stick one some in your mouth while the rest scatter to the floor (which you then try to consume later, you squirrel). Baby Mum Mums is another favorite, they are rice cookies that I started giving you as soon as I discovered them at around six or seven months. Your Tia Val says they are Styrofoam, but I keep telling her that your taste buds are still sensitive, so they aren't bland to you, but full of flavor. Anyhow, they are rice snacks that you can break off in your mouth in huge chunks and dissolve easily. You also eat Crunchies, which remind me  of Cheetos for babies. I end up consuming quite a bit more of your puffs and crunchies than you do! haha.

As for the rest of it, I pretty much gave up on  silverware and decided you can have our food. A friend of mine really opened me up to Baby Led Weaning, which in short, is just allowing your child to try and eat a variety of foods as an adult would, rather than smashing it up and feeding it. It makes life easier. Now don't misunderstand, you aren't eating pizza or anything like that. On nights when we binge out, I have toddler ravioli for you to eat that you seem to enjoy. Tonight, you ate some of my carrots and beef that had been cooked up in the crock pot, and earlier you ate some smoked salmon with me. You don't consume very much at all, but it's much better for you to take your time learning how to eat a variety of textures rather than just focusing on flavors alone. I hope you enjoy. I know I do!

Friday, February 10, 2012


Wow... it's been two months since I've written, which in turn makes it that much harder to write because so much has happened. I'm kicking myself for not trying to catch up sooner even now. Yet here we are, and so I will try to make do with what I can. Over the next bit of time, I will try to write about what's happened along with the new stuff. For now, I'll just start playing catch up by telling you how far you've come since December.

You crawl now, belly off the floor and all, but you've exceeded even that. You now stand yourself up using the couch, TV stand, and pretty much anything else that will allow you to do so. I remember the first time you did it. You pulled yourself up using your toy box, and then you fell right into it! It was so funny even though you cried a little because you were so startled. Like a champ, however, you continued to do it. Soon, you were pulling yourself up using the TV stand, the problem being that once you had stretched up you didn't know how to get back down! So you would cry and cry. I can only imagine what was going through your head. Perhaps it was something like, "Help me! If I let go I'll fall into a black abyss!" Since then, you now just stand up and fall right onto your butt. You've come so far now that you try to walk along things if you can. Just two days ago, I was sitting cross legged at the door while talking to a neighbor, Parker, outside.  You were crawling around and used my knee to stand up. Then, in a brilliant motion, you let go and threw your arms up as if you were superman! I'd say it was a good four or five seconds before you tumbled to your butt. I was so glad Parker was there to witness it, as even she smiled about it. Only you haven't tried again, though you have started to cling a little less with your hands.

You make all sorts of baby sounds. Lots of "Ahhhhs," and, my favorite, "Dadada." Once, I asked you a question and you even said, "Yeah," though I think that was more of a coincidence than an actual intent to answer. Still, I was so pleased! I keep trying to get you to say daddy, that way I can really get you to pick on your father! The other day you climbed up to him and said, "ad," and it was so very close that Vincent got a little nervous. However, with the onset of language, comes the frustration as well. It's as if you want to communicate, and there's a conversation going on in your head, but since you cannot express yourself properly you get frustrated and cry sometimes, just because I don't understand what you desire. I'm confident this will pass though, and so very excited!

Lastly, it's fascinating to watch you play with your toys now. You're still not an expert, but you've started to realize that they are not all for chewing. I watch you play with steering wheels with an effort, or with certain toys and you are trying to study them... figure them out. It really is amazing, to watch a child grow first hand. I wouldn't trade this for the world. Though sometimes, I beat myself up thinking I should be doing more, should be pushing myself and I go back and think of all the times I slacked, just to watch a movie, or get my own stuff done. I know I'm being a little harsh, but then I'm certain there is some truth to it as well. One downfall is I've noticed you see TV a lot more than I'd like. Sometimes, I like to mess with you. You will be trying to watch the TV, and I'll put my hand about half a foot in front of your eyes and as you try to look around I keep moving my hand until you pay attention to me!

Your first time on a swing! Your father initiated the experience and you were so happy. It's one of your favorite activities by far. (January 2012)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Going Mobile

It is now December. I feel pretty lousy, considering I didn't really blog much about Thanksgiving, or what has happened over the past couple weeks. But if you take into account how busy you keep me, and believe that we have spent plenty of time with family, you can excuse some of it. We did have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I stuffed myself on several turkeys over the course of a few days, and since you started solids you got to eat sweet potatoes and a few other goodies that coincide with the holiday.

That being said, I am proud to announce that you have recently begun scooting! Now, instead of rolling all over the place, you can make a beeline for whatever target you like. This typically consists of wires, shoes.. oh you know, anything you can get your hands on that's *not* a colorful toy. It began on November 30, and was a moment you shared with your father in the bedroom. I heard him telling me how you were making your way from one point to another, but it didn't really dawn on me exactly what was happening until the next day when I saw it for myself. I cannot believe you have crossed this milestone so suddenly. I feel like I was caught completely unaware! But I am so pleased for you, though now you get extremely angry when we remove you from danger, or return you to our sights. Oh, the misery of having boundaries!

Below: You and your 11 month old cousin, Annadee. She's already a full fledged crawler, and you will soon be too! (November 2011)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Home for the Holidays

Today I am giddy with joy. I am pretty polite about expressing myself, so if you ever find yourself wondering if I am cold hearted or uncaring, just know that it's in there somewhere.

Beowulf has been missing for about a month now.. at least he was. Two night ago he made his first appearance. He ran up to the door, and then away, but I had such a good look at him. He circled around throughout the night several more times, each time running away. He was scared of me, and people in general. A friend of mine suggested that he had gone feral, and that I would have to trap him, but I didn't have the heart. Your father left food out, and I took it as a blessing just to have seen him. He was alive, he was well, and that was good enough for me.

Last night, he returned again, only this time, Draco corralled him! I saw Draco chasing him our way, and then Beowulf was in our midst... so close and yet too scared to come near. That's when your father handed me pieces of sandwich meat to lure him towards me, and it worked! I began tossing the meat to him, and gradually tossing it closer and closer to myself, until he was eating out of my hand. Then, I picked him up and brought him inside. I think even he was happy to be back, for he remembered everything. As I was laying with you and your father in bed, I heard a little meow, and Beowulf appeared and demanded we pet him. Then, he snuggled with us all for the evening. He remembers everything, including where the food and litter box are, and has been especially affectionate now that he's home. He keeps laying beside you as well, and you can't keep your hands off of him! You keep grabbing his fur, you're so excited to pet the cats and it's so cute. I try to help you learn how to pet them gently, but at times you get carried away and just grab as much fur as your little fist can hold.

Our plan is to at least get a good collar for Beowulf, so that if he does run off, at least people will know he has a home. However, with Thanksgiving looming so close, this is one extra thing I have to be thankful to the Gods for. Just think, at Thanksgiving you will be enjoying tasty food right along side us! Of course we will give some turkey to the cats, and while you may not get to have turkey, you still get to eat with us. As of your birthday you have officially graduated to two meals a day, one in the morning and one in the evening. You can hold your sippy cup with a bit more of a grip now. I should also mention here that you are very independent. There are times when  you just refuse to nurse, but you are hungry and will take it from the bottle. You still like to be held, but you enjoy being able to look around freely while you eat in my arms. I don't mind at all really, though pumping can be an annoyance. I still breastfeed you at night and when trying to get you to nap. So I would say that your eating habits have been your biggest milestone lately, other than just being able to sit up better. You still cannot crawl, and just kick your feet when you are anxious to get somewhere. You do roll all over the floor, if that counts for mobility. Eating is a perfect theme though, given that Thanksgiving day is just around the corner!

Below: What a pair! Ya Harley, hanging on the couch at his house. I like how you are both holding remotes. (November 2011)

Cesar's Stats

It's time for a six month update! As before, some of these things I’ve taken motherly/creative liberties with, which I’ll mark with *.  

(October 2011)

Age: 6 months
Hair: Dark brown
Eyes: Brown
Weight: 21 lbs.
Height: NA(Blame your father, who forgot the measurements)
Sign: Taurus
Chinese Zodiac: Rabbit

Favorite Color: Orange*
Favorite Animal: Monkey* (as decided by your Grandpa Harley)
Favorite Toy:  George the Monkey for sleepy time, Graco Car Walker
Favorite Food: Avocados, Banana
Favorite Activity: Rolling around, putting everything in your mouth! When mommy and daddy hold you upside down, or take your arms and swing you in the air.. you really are a monkey!
Least Favorite Activity:  Naptime
Likes: Playing "Mexican Airplaine!" with daddy, Trying to pet the cats, Getting attention from ANYONE
Dislikes: Being inside for too long, laying down for too long

You are a fantastic eater! We gradually introduced food from varying sessions, to every mid morning, and now have started you on two meals a day. You like to hold your own sippy cup, and you sometimes just demand a bottle over the boob. You are very independent, but there's a mama's boy that lingers in there. Most people say you are ahead for your age. I'm not sure about that, but you are extremely alert all of the time.