Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Activity Table

For those of you that don’t know me well ... I come from a long line (ok … just my brother and I and my parents) of arty people. We like art. All kinds of art. We’re art junkies. We forward links of cool furniture design websites and get goosebumps when the new Design Within Reach catalog comes out, and get all judgey when law suits arise over the correct ownership of paintings from famous artists.

So, it’s probably no surprise to find out that Carter’s first activity table was lovingly made from Herman Miller parts and pieces. And we all wanted to touch it in hopes that Eames had touched that particular piece of furniture as well. We’re that dorky. We really are (ok, at least I am).

So, part of me wants to explain to him that he should wake up every morning and give the Herman Miller table a little kiss or wink – because furniture design is that important to mommy (and was that important in the design world - it influenced every part of design). But then the mommy (realistic) side of me wants him to know that we actually have no designy furniture because I know what a sippy cup (and beer) does to fabric … and I know what this mommy would do if a sippy cup touched a barcelona chair ... and it ain’t pretty.
Someday Carter, you will visit mommy and daddy (after you graduate college – and your 500 siblings are out of the house too) and mommy and daddy will be sitting on wassily chairs sipping coffee happily (ok…Chad would be just as happy (read: happier) on his crappy saggy sectional sofa….sigh…but if he gets his way and gets 500 kids…then I get a freaking wassily chair damnit). And Carter, you will someday understand that furniture design influenced the entire design and art world deeply…and you will get a little tear in your eye because your first activity table was handmade just for you from Herman Miller parts.

I take great pride in that. Thank you Grandpa Jones for making this for Carter. He likes it because it’s a cool place to build legos. I like it because it’s something that means more.

Merry Christmas to All

What's a Christmas Party without Moose Mugs?
Well, the family has left, the leftovers are gone (mostly…ok – mainly the cookies are gone), the Christmas decorations are down (I am seriously married to an obsessive compulsive organizer), and the house is covered in Carter toys.

There was no drama (ok, there was drama…but not at my house…so…I WIN CHRISTMAS…but that’s another story), there were no cooking mishaps (well, my dad had to jump in before I made crappy gravy – gravy was the only thing I had never prepared), there were no travel issues, and everything seemed to go smoothly.
Carter learned a lot this Christmas. How to rip presents open, the power of cookies, how to manipulate multiple grandparents are once, how to get Uncle Andy to read every book in the toy bin, how to catch (we're still working on this one), the one finger rule (we're still working on this one too), that a cute smile will get your family to let you watch Dora the Explorer over and over again ... you know - standard one year old lessons.
The new activity table (which doubles as a car racetrack, lego building center, you name it)

The new tricycle (which doubles as a mommy cardio workout - since he constantly wants me to push him on it)

I have to say, having the whole family to our house, cooking a huge Christmas Eve and Christmas dinner…and being pregnant…well, it had me slightly worried. But…we pulled it off! Go our team!

Everything was seriously great and I'm so happy that Carter got to have both sides of grandparents here.
Now, I have to go stop a tantrum about the new wagon (seriously... I'm tired...i can't pull him for one more wagon ride or push him on one more tricycle ride...where did his books go and doesn't he know that prego mommy can only have one cup of coffee before the sea monkey's head explodes?).

Sunday, December 27, 2009

A little over a week ago, I threw up (who’s excited to read this post?)…

And then I threw up more. And more…and it went on all night long and into the next day. After throwing up for hours, watching your fever slowly go up and not being able to move what-so-ever – we decided to call my doctor to make sure the sea monkey could survive mommy’s apparent stomach flu.

The doctors office said that sea monkey should be ok, as long as I could keep fluids down (which I couldn’t) and my fever didn’t go up anymore (which it did). If those didn’t work out – they had instructed us to go directly to the emergency room and get some fluids via an iv – and have the on-call ob check the sea monkeys heart beat (just to be safe).
So off we went, to the hospital. Imagine my excitement. I guess it’s a good thing we moved to Strongsville – because we had to call in the troops for emergency Carter supervision. Vanessa ran over to play with Carter. And then grandma G came over a little while later to relieve Vanessa and get Carter to bed.
I will say this – props to the hospital for getting us in quickly and hooked up to fluids super fast (and in my own room sans any weird and stinky roomates)...pregnancy really gives you the trump card at the emergency room I guess.

Long story short; after the whole evening was over – I had had three bags of fluid and a bag of potassium (and just about every vein in both arms violated for random blood tests). And now I leaving knowing that I have some potassium issues to keep my eye on (who has potassium issues…what a nose bleed problem to have. I couldn’t be dorkier if I tried - sigh).

The funniest part that came out of the whole debacle: the nurse’s reaction at my follow-up appointment at my ob.

Here is how the conversation went:

Nurse: I see you had to go to the emergency room last week
Me: I did. We were actually instructed to by this office – just to be careful since I thought I had the flu
Nurse: Your records show you were severely dehydrated
Me: Yea, well that happens when you throw up as much as I had
Nurse: But are you drinking water?
Me….staring blankly…is this moron serious?
Nurse: Because pregnant women need water
Me: I. Know. This. I had the flu – and was throwing up
Nurse: But you still need water
Me: I couldn’t keep water down
Nurse: You actually need extra water then
Me….staring blankly again…is there something wrong with her? Should I speak slowly?
Nurse: So are you drinking more water now?
Me (now looking at Chad): Is this for real?
Chad (shaking his head and laughing): yup
Me (giving up): Ok…I’ll drink water
Nurse: A lot of water

So, yea. Nurse obvious wants you all to know…it’s important to drink water. Maybe at my next visit she can tell me not to use methamphetamine when pregnant.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Grocery Shopping

Well, grocery shopping with a toddler...

Dear Giant eagle shoppers – if you happened to have heard a toddler screaming “DaDa DaDa ….Duck Duck Duck Duck….GO GO GO GO” non-stop for almost 2 hours during your last shopping experience…I truly apologize.

My child likes to yell sometimes. What you may have missed (if you only heard him) is that he also took off most of his clothes in the grocery store and also threw butter at one person and cheese at another (while giggling). And then to top it all off…he picked his nose and wiped it all over my sweater.

Again… sorry. But in his defense…I made him sit in a cart for almost 2 hours…what can you expect?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Our Christmas '09 Photos

Many of you will see some of these photos on our Holiday cards (if UPS ever decides to deliver the cards).

These were all taken by a professional photographer - at our house.

Happy Holidays!

A glimpse at the inside...

According to a reputable baby website...this is what the Sea Monkey looks like on the inside this week (if you would like to know the name of the website - feel free to email me ... it's a wonderfully informative site).

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Great Sippy Quest

This is just a small sampling of the plethora of sippy cups that have taken over our house. Why do we have so many you wonder, because we have not yet found the perfect sippy. And we fully intend to find the perfect sippy.

One that doesn’t leak, one that isn’t easily broken when thrown against a wall in a toddler tantrum, one that Carter can’t unscrew the top off and pour on the dog, one that isn’t hard to drink from, one that mommy can accidentally step on (when carrying laundry) without breaking, etc.

It’s the little victories in life that really matter…and this one matters to this mommy (read: this mommy is sick of mopping the kitchen and foyer floor every other day, and hates that she has to steam clean the juice out of carpets weekly - i'm comin' for you sippy industry).

Maybe this is something to remember when I am not pregnant...I dare you to remind me...DARE YOU

I lost weight. I am officially in my second trimester – and I actually have lost 3 pounds in the last three months. How is this possible when you’re pregnant – you wonder…because pregnant women can’t drink beer.
Yup, I have lost beer weight. Is this a valuable lesson I should have learned? Maybe. But I still miss beer. Umm…beer. Especially during Christmas Ale season. BEEEEEER

Does this mean, if I drink more martinis (when not pregnant) that I would be ok?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Christmas Tree - Meet Toddler ...Toddler - Meet Christmas Tree

This is really our first year of being truly aware of our Christmas tree. Every other year we picked our trees based on height, cuteness, fullness – aesthetics.

This year we wanted our tree to fit 3 basic needs:
1.) Something relatively soft so it wouldn’t prick curious little hands
2.) Something that didn’t look too huge or too heavy – for when Carter knocks it over (and we know this is inevitable)
3.) Something that would more or less fit in the room

So we went on our tree quest (and mommy couldn't resist a few cute picture opportunities)
Carter, looking super happy to be crammed in this random sleigh...

Carter and daddy looking mildly annoyed with mommy's camera...Carter, on a cart for shrubs (our containment solution)
Actually very happy about the cart...he likes anything that moves (especially anything that he can ride or drive)
Back to running...
Picking his favorite tree. Oddly enough - he actually did pick the tree that we ended up buying (and then my husband talked the tree salesperson down in price...by a lot).

Note to husbands that would like their wives to get pregnant:

If you think your wife is crazy now…just wait. A pregnant wife is like living with a psychopath…a hungry hungry psychopath.

In our defense…we (I’m speaking for all pregnant women right now) can’t help it. We’re pregnant. We have literally lost our minds.

So, before you decide that it would be great fun to get pregnant…mentally prepare yourself. Because you will have to deal with breakdowns, random ups and downs, weight gain, south moving boobs, hair and skin changes, more breakdowns (over nothing), tears, extra help around the house, a ton of support, you name it….and that pregnant wife of yours will throw it at you.

But before you go feeling all bad for yourself for having to deal with a psychopath…just put yourself in your psychopath’s shoes. Because YOU don’t have to deal with extreme weight gain, uncontrollable mood swings, new insecurities, more mood swings, stomach, back, and all other body part pains, pooping problems, more pooping problems, ugly hair, cramping during the night, peeing CONSTANTLY, eating weird shit that you would normally never eat…the list goes on and on.

So…my point is…if you want your wife to get pregnant…prepare yourself. And then deal with what she throws at you. Because she can’t help how crazy she is. You on the other hand…can help how extra nice you are and if you play your cards right…she won’t pour ranch dressing and pickle juice on you in your sleep and eat you for a midnight snack.

Note: Nice husbands vacuum while watching the child.

Another note: Nice husbands change poopy diapers no questions asked.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Spaghetti Night

We all have pictures of ourselves as cute little babies covered in spaghetti. Right? Or pudding I guess (some of us have both...thanks mom).
So, being a good mommy…I had to chronicle Carter munching down on spaghetti. I had to. For the sake of future teenage embarrassment, wedding slide shows, you know – all of that good stuff.

So, for your viewing enjoyment…here is Carter on spaghetti night:

And what's dinnertime without a little nose picking...somebody has to get that pasta into places where mommy and daddy can't get it back out.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


We always joke that Carter is Chad's mini me. And he is. He has looked like Chad from the start.

But I have to say...he has some mommy in him too!


Sunday, November 29, 2009

It Must be Winter...

We have already had our first snow of the year (here is a view of our backyard). I guess I don't know if the word "already" is appropriate. I grew up with snow for Thanksgiving almost every year (in Michigan)...but it has been rare in Ohio thus far.
On Thanksgiving we just had a little bit of flurries here and there and we all joked about how it would be awhile before we'd have accumulation. Little did we know...it would be the next morning.

I'd love to post pictures of Carter chowing down on turkey and dressing, but this mommy forgot her camera. This may have been the first time I was without a camera in over a year. Prego brain I guess.

And I would love to post pictures of Carter and I braving Black Friday at Target and the Mall. But I was scared to take a second to take out my camera - for fear that someone would take this as a moment of weakness and hockey-check me into a wall and steal anything in my cart thinking it was some fabulous deal they had missed.

Ohh...and I would love to post pictures of Carter's first time seeing Santa and real reindeer...but he went with grandma G so mommy and daddy could go to dinner and have some quiet mommy and daddy time. We're terrible parents. I'm sorry we missed your first santa visit Carter...we promise to pay for your first year in therapy as an adult.
I do, however, have a picture of Carter in his new snow suit (the main reason I went out on Black Friday...that, and to buy over prices boots that can only be purchased at Stride Rite (due to somebody's extra-wide sized feet)). He wore this to romp around in the snow at the local Tree Lighting and go on a sleigh ride with grandma G.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I’ve decided that tomorrow I will teach the child about working in a corporation (just in case):

8am – he will awake to find that I have left him a memo announcing that I will be “the chair” of a 10am meeting regarding his lunch. He will wonder what "the chair" means...and why I couldn't just use another word.

8:30am – I will inform him that we will be having a 9am meeting to prepare for our 10am meeting. I’ll ask him to bring his thoughts on what he would like for lunch.

9am- Pre-Meeting: I will show him a partial outline of what I plan to tell him about at our 10am meeting (he won't get much from it...as it won't actually show much). I’ll ask him what his thoughts are on what he would like his lunch to be (specifically, could he please give me 3 food options…)
10am Meeting: I will show him 3 lunch options (all from the suggestions that he had brought up at our 9am meeting…except I will take credit for having thought of them).
I’ll ask him to point to a food from the 3 options – and let him know that this will be his lunch.

Noon: I will feed him a different food and then tell him that he had in fact picked this food…and not the food that he clearly remembers having selected.

12:15pm: I will send out a lunch conclusion memo using him as an example of how employees that don’t want to make mistakes should take better notes. And then I will cleverly make myself look like a compassionate and intelligent leader with a carefully worded warm ending.

12:30: Carter will go down for his nap angry and confused. Had he really picked that for lunch? He clearly remembers picking something else…he thinks I may have made that mistake…but is it worth confronting me? Would he be considered a “bad team player” if he confronted me? His review is coming up – maybe it’s better to keep quiet. But it seems like crap that he is the one that came up with the three food options and I took credit. This is all so unfair, he'll think.

Monday, November 23, 2009

There's an App for that...?

Now that I’ve come out of the “I’m pregnant” closet, I may as well share a recent story from a visit to my new doctor (I promise to leave out details).
I had decided to switch to a new doctor. Partially because we moved, and I wanted to have a doctor closer to home. Partially because my last doctor was a rusher (I hate being rushed). Oh yea…and also partially because I hold grudges and the student that jammed a screw driver into my spine multiple times trying to “learn” (also known as giving his first epidural) sort of ruined my experience at that hospital...well, that and the fact that when the epidural later fell out – the hospital staff left me without pain meds for over six hours (after a c-section). So, I don’t ever want to step foot in there again. Ever. Call me sensitive.

Anywho, I decided to try a new doctor. Now, admittedly…I can be somewhat picky about doctors. Specifically, doctors that you have to visit so often…and ones that handle the whole birthing process. So, I did some research, asked around, etc etc … and found a new doctor that I had a really good feeling about.

And before I go into the issue I had with this doctor, I would like to throw out there…he seems to be a very pleasant person and a good doctor. BUT, my issue is this…he had an OB/GYN iphone app. The reason I know this is because he was on his iphone through my entire appointment.

And after a little research (thanks Trad), I learned…there’s really “an app for that.” Which begs to ask the question, “Really Apple…have you gone too far?”


Internet, meet sea monkey. Sea monkey, meet internet

Sea Monkey should be arriving in early to mid June.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


You know your son needs a playdate when he follows the dog and cat around attempting to hand them balls, sippy cups, and various other toys to force any form of interaction. So we arranged for a nice long playdate for Carter today.

He was in toddler heaven. He and his buddy Bradley played with trucks, bouncy balls and all other boy-ish toys. We had one minor glow-worm related meltdown…but outside of that ... it was two little boys floating on a happy cloud of marshmallows and puppies.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A special (post halloween) note:

Please don't forget that you can donate any hay that you may have used to decorate with. Local animal shelters can always use hay to help keep animals warm! Call your local shelter first to make sure it's ok...if they don't accept it - try another one!

The little critters will appreciate it!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween 2009

If halloween has come and gone, does that mean I can't dress the child up like a monkey anymore? Or does it mean I have to at least do it when people won't see?

We had a nice (read: non-scary/toddler-friendly) halloween.

We went to grandma G's house early for trick-or-treating with the neighbors and dinner (and to drop off the dog that has no concept of not barking at every little noise and movement...and we're selfish and wanted Carter to sleep tonight...so we made it grandma's problem - go ahead...judge us...and then you can doggy sit and see what we mean).
Carter's favorite part of halloween - the 99 cent plastic pumpkin from Target.
And then we headed home to trick-or-treat around the house.
Pop Quiz....what's in Chad's coffee mug?
We literally walked one street over (into a whole different development) and our mouths fell open. There were parties at almost every house, adults were outside drinking (and offering drinks to other adults), kids were playing and having fun. It was as if the universe was laughing and pointing at us saying, "Baahhh haaa...you were SO close to your perfect house weren't you suckas!!" And then we walked back onto our street (in our development) and everyone's lights were off and it was quiet and anti-social. Yup...screw you too universe.

We still made it home in time to hand out some candy too (somebody on our street had to 'represent') and to make some lofty plans for next years halloween. We refuse to live on the lame/boring street.
Carter pointed out that a mouse (or some sort of woodland creature) ate a hole around our pumpkins eye....a little weird, especially given that it had only been outside an hour at this point. Speedy little suckers.
Chad actually carved the pirate pumpkin. Really. I'm so not kidding. It really was Chad.
And then Carter went happily to bed (with dreams of 99 cent plastic pumpkins dancing in his head) and mommy and daddy made a fire and hung out (with adult beverages, a cavs game and massive amounts of candy. What? We can't let Carter eat it...we're just helping).
Happy Halloween to all!