Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Holiday events!

First things first - I know you all have been buckling under the anticipation of finding out the true nature of the filling inside this deep fried goodness. And so I tell you now that that, my friends, is your basic deep fried Oreo. Yep. Oreo...fried. Gross, huh? Well, I ate them all. It was so bizaare I just had to share it. Sorry the picture clue of Sam in the pumpkins threw some of you. I was just trying to convey that we were at one of those pumpkin patch farms when we discovered the deep fried Oreo. And those two pictures are the only ones worth sharing because the place was a freakin' mob scene.

For several weeks I'd been envying all your blog posts with your children frolicking among the pumpkins in fields of green under the blue, cloudless sky, so 2 weekends ago I insisted we give it a try as well. This was more like frolicking among fields of humans amidst a grey, smokey cloud. Seriously, are we not past the whole smoking around children thing? Guess not. The lines for things like hay rides and pony rides were hours (note the plural 's') long, so we couldn't do much in the way of activities. We tried to take Sam to the playground area where you had to pay to get in, but that lasted maybe 5 minutes due to the extremely dense layer of children writhing around everywhere we stepped. And so we made out with our two pumpkins and our deep fried food. While Hubby waited in line to pay for the pumpkins Sam and I watched a guy and his girlfriend inspect and take one of the pumpkins from the little photo area that the farm had set up...while someone was taking their child's picture. How's that for class? Have I painted a vivid picture of this experience yet? Next year we'll be driving to a farm further away from the city, I think.

Today we'll be attending a costume parade with the moms and kids from "the club." I totally half assed Halloween this year as far as Sam's costume. You know what though, I kept my eyes open for costume possibilities and even did some active searching and I'm telling you I did not see a single thing that my kid would keep on his body for more than 30 seconds. With all the fluff and fur and padding and synthetic fibers there was just no way. Plus there's the issue of budget. For a while Hubby and I brainstormed ideas for costumes I could make. We almost went with a vampire costume for him. He'd wear a t-shirt that said, "I vant to suuck your boooob," on it and on the cape the name "Lactacula" would be printed. After a little while it didn't sound like such a great idea as I envisioned the 3 year olds asking their moms about it and the moms not laughing but glaring at me. So in the end I decided to go simple and get him something he could play with after Halloween, unlike the skunk costume from last year that is now our cat's bed. I also figured the more toy-like his costume was the more likely it might hold his interest for the duration of the parade. So Sam will be a construction worker this year. I got him a Bob the Builder toolbelt and hard hat and he'll wear his jeans and a plaid shirt. Of course, the flannel is going to end up being too hot for him to wear this afternoon since it is almost 70 freakin' degrees here today! I expect the shirt will be shed early on, as will the toolbelt and hat if this goes anything like the test run last night, leaving Sam to do the parade in his t-shirt and jeans. Impressive, I know.

As for tonight I'm not sure what to do with him. I had hoped that he would get to put candy in the buckets/bags of the kids that would come to our door, but the neighbors say the kids in our buildings generally leave our apartment complex and head over to more residential areas. I know Sam could care less about trick or treating, I just thought he might like to look at other kids in costumes. Maybe we'll go take a walk through one of the neighborhoods so he can see. And after he goes to bed I'm sure Hubby and I will be enjoying any one of the fine Halloween flicks to be aired on tv tonight.

In other news we have a second word: "cah," sometimes pronounced "gah." Apparently my son is from Boston.

Happy Halloween, everyone.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Little quiz for ya:

Here's a little quiz for your Thursday enjoyment. See if you can answer the following.

1) Remember I mentioned I was going to be writing a book? Well I've been doing some planning for it, outlining plot and such, and also choosing character names. After long, long consideration I decided on the two names for the main characters, who will end up in a relationship for most of the book. So I wanted the names to not only fit what I envision for each character but also work well together. When I finally chose them I was very pleased with myself and promptly wrote an email to Hubby listing the character names, but as soon as I wrote them next to each other I realized why I thought they sounded so good together, as well as why I can't use them. The names were Lil and James. Why can't I use them?

2) What do you think this is?

I'll give you a hint about where we were to help you out.

What is he pointing at? That one's hypothetical - I have no idea.

3) This is related to number 1. What was the name of a fairly jockish and popular but nice guy in your middle school or high school? I don't want the name of the jack ass who thought he was too cool for school. I want the name of the down to earth guy that seemed to get along with most everyone and was genuinely kind to even the people that weren't jocks or popular or whatever. See how I use you all?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Another Birthday Today

I’ve always associated my Dad with the outdoors; he's just an outdoorsy type of guy. Growing up, if my father was not at work then he was probably out in the yard doing an array of gardening tasks and projects. I never understood what he could possibly be doing to pass so much time.

When I picture my childhood I envision our back yard when we lived in Maryland. It had a treehouse and a trapeze that my dad built himself. And it was full of trees and leaves and secret places. That yard was my absolute favorite place to be. I ran around pretending to be Wendy, Dorothy, Sheena, a fairy, a gelfling, a unicorn, anyone or anything I wanted. My dad would walk around the yard with me and point out the things I’d miss, like a snake coiled up a few feet from where I’d stepped. He’d drive me around on the lawn mower down the hill in the grassy part below. This will sound strange, but I did this meditation thing back in my theater days where we envisioned ourselves in a safe space and I automatically saw myself back in that treehouse.

When I got older and we lived in a different house things were different. I didn’t want to go outside. It was all about locking myself in my bedroom, shutting out the light as much as possible and blasting some awful hair band. My dad would force me to go out back and do yard work under threat of grounding or losing my phone. I hated it. I hated weeding and planting and whatever else he had me do, and I was certain that absolutely no other kid my age was being forced to do manual labor outside – I, and I alone, was being tortured. I started to dread any Saturday in which the weather was nice because I knew I’d be forced to “go out and enjoy it.”

As the weather gets colder here I’ve been watching my plants out on the patio freeze and slowly droop. I contacted my dad back in the summer to get his advice on what to plant out there and discuss how to do it successfully. My potted caladium and coleus had tripled in size by week 6. I was left wishing for a yard in which I could start a real garden, a place that would support perennials, and wishing I’d paid more attention to everything my dad taught me. Hubby and I are starting to look into buying a house this spring and my number one priority for looking at a home is for it to have a yard. I want Sam to have his own place outdoors where he feels free. Right now I do my best to get him outside as much as possible to parks, playgrounds, or the arboretum. I look forward to seeing what my dad has done for Sam in his new woodsy backyard in the mountains where he and my mother recently retired. I know it involves a play area with tree stumps, and holes and crevices especially good for inhabitance by elves.

Every weekend Hubby and I try to figure out what we should do with our free time with Sam. Hubby lists possibilities as they come to mind and quite frequently, if the weather is nice, every indoor suggestion will be met with a disdainful, “There’s no way we’re doing something inside. It’s a beautiful day and I intend to enjoy it.”

Happy Birthday, Dad. Hope you have fun out in the yard today.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

More Tales of Trains

Well, I think I scarred my son. Ever since the incident with the train table last week I have been walking around the house and finding scenes like this:

And this:

Clearly this boy has been wronged, be it by me, by 4 year olds who don't like sharing, or by their negligent parents, the boy has been wronged.

My poor little train conductor. Will he ever recover?

I did take him back to the train table a few days later where he played happily with a two year old whose mother kept reprimanding him for absolutely nothing. He still threw a tantrum when we left despite the fact that he'd already gotten bored with the train and was just walking around. I don't feel so bad anymore. And I am armed and ready for the next bully. Now if only my son could get some words so that I could arm him as well. Thanks for all of your input.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Grapple, grapple

I have a hard time admitting this, but I have learned something about myself over the course of the last few months. I tend to get incredibly indignant about the way other people parent their children when it comes to protecting Sam. When I take him out to a playground, a store, a playgroup, what have you, I am right there with him when it comes to interacting with other kids when it looks like there might be trouble. I am there helping him to share and trade toys back and forth, to make sure no one gets pushed away from the steering wheel and that everyone gets a turn. I cannot tell you how often I find I am the only one mediating though, how often other parents stand their and watch their child take a toy, slap Sam's hands, push past him, and they do nothing. It makes me want to scream, say something rude, or glare until my eyes pop out and/or their head explodes. I never, in actuality, do more than glare mildly and then complain to my husband. Here's an example:

Yesterday was dreary and threatening to rain so I decided to take Sam to the Barnes and Noble because they have a train set there, and I thought he'd like it. When we arrived there were two older children already there so I decided to take him over to the story area to play on the stage for a while. When it was clear that the parents of these kids were camped out for the day I decided to let him go over and play. The other two kids proceeded to take train cars from him, gathering them up so that they had them all, and repeatedly stepped between him and the table so that he could not come near. The girl even started to say something to him about how he was too young to play there until she saw me looking at her. Their parents did nothing. They sat in their chairs reading. Personally I do not feel comfortable being the only one to mediate in a situation like that when the parents are RIGHT THERE. Sadly, I decided that Sam and I needed to leave because I was afraid he was really going to get pushed over and his lack of train cars was starting to upset him. Of course, when I picked him up to go he threw a HUGE tantrum and would not stop screaming no matter how I tried to appease him. We ended up leaving the store with him flailing in my arms and sobbing. I felt awful. And yet I do think he needed to be removed from the situation. He was going to have a tantrum anyway if he kept having his cars taken away or it could have been worse with two older kids who specifically did not want him there and two parents who wouldn't even look up from their reading material.

I left with him feeling that we'd both been bullied. I was so pissed that our afternoon had been ruined, at least that's how it felt. I understand that kids will be kids. They don't have to want to play with him. They don't even have to be good at sharing. But they do need to have parents that will supervise enough to let them know that pushing him away from the table is not acceptable. I really need some advice here because I feel like I find myself in this situation over and over again. What am I supposed to do when I am standing there watching a kid be mean to him and their parent does nothing? I mean, clearly these two parents had brought their kids there to play with the train so they could check out for a bit, and I understand the need to check out every so often. And I know their kids were older and maybe they don't really need to deal with this stuff very often anymore. But wasn't this a good opportunity to help their child exhibit some patience with a younger child? Or was I just totally wrong to take Sam somewhere to play with a train where there might be older kids in the first place? I really don't know how I should have handled the situation but as I wiped tears from his eyes and put him in the car I knew that somewhere along the line I had not made the right choice, because he didn't deserve to miss out on something he liked due to the behavior of everyone else. And I know that I get angry and am frustrated by situations like this frequently.

So tell me, am I expecting too much from other parents? Am I totally overprotective/overbearing/over-involved? Would you reprimand another person's child if they didn't? Would you feel comfortable sitting there and mediating while the other parent did nothing? Do you avoid these situations altogether? Do you try and let your child be independent and fend for himself until the bad thing happens rather than removing him in its anticipation? Honest answers please - I'm at a loss.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

It's officially time to throw the remote in the trash...

We all had a vision of how we would parent before we actually had kids. My vision involved homemade baby food, cloth diapers, co-sleeping through the night, etc. Oh, how things change once the baby arrives. Things seem unrealistic, expectations are lowered, we feel some guilt but not enough to change it. Part of my perfect vision also involved no tv watching for Sam. Before he was born I didn't understand why anyone would want their baby watching tv, and I admit that I saw it as a type of laziness in parents. Then Sam came and I needed a way to fill up hours and hours of time, just the two of us. When he was very young he was all colic, all the time, so tv wasn't an issue. Eventually though he settled and every so often we had some down time by watching a Baby Einstein video. As he got a bit older it turned into the occasional episode of Teletubbies, and as of late Sam has discovered the joys of Elmo while mommy has discovered the joys of getting to take a shower while Elmo babysits.

It was never a lot of tv, about half an hour so that I could get ready for the day. And maybe if he wasn't feeling well and wanted to cuddle on the couch...and maybe if he needed to be still to settle down for a nap...you get the picture. And I did this, knowing full well that the American Academy of Pediatrics did not recommend any television viewing for children under the age of two. And I did this knowing why they would make that recommendation. Certainly nothing good was coming from Sam's tv viewing other than some down time for me. He wasn't learning anything from it since we all know babies learn by doing, not by watching a 2 dimensional screen. I could see him sitting there totally zoning out as I thought to myself, "this is not right." He was engaged but not in a good way. When asked if he wanted to watch Elmo though, he would smile and run to the tv waiting to see his friend sing that incredibly annoying song, and he would dance, which I could rationalize as "interaction". And so I continued - a bit of tv, every so often when I needed it, like to shower for 5 minutes without Sam standing there opening and closing my shower door. I had become that "lazy" parent but I didn't care, not enough to change it anyway.

About a month ago a writer on Slate suggested that there might be a possible link between the increase in children diagnosed with Autism and the rise of tv viewing among children in the past 25 years. On first read I thought the idea was interesting, but not very convincing. He had very little in the way of hard evidence to support this theory and acknowledged in the article that it was little more than speculation. I actually was a little pissed off by the article after thinking about it a bit because I think it's dangerous to insinuate that Autism might be linked to something that a parent can control when you have no evidence to support you. Parents of Autistic children, I am sure, already beat themselves up enough wondering if they did something wrong or could have somehow prevented this from happening to their children. For us, it hits close to home because my husband has two autistic half brothers. The idea of my Mother-in-law berrating herself for letting her boys watch too much tv was too much, especially if there was no basis.

Yesterday a follow up article was posted on Slate discussing a recent study done by Cornell University, potentially linking Autism to tv viewing by children under three. If you've not yet seen this article you really need to go and read it (it links to the previous article I mentioned above, which is also worth your time to read as it gives a lot of background on the potential connection between the two). Reading it was enough to make me jump from my seat, grab the remote and delete every episode of Teletubbies and Sesame Street we had. The researchers are not suggesting that tv is the sole cause of the rise in autism, but they, and the writer, believe there is a link, that it is one factor among many. What it comes down to for me is this: no one knows the real cause of autism and why it has become so widespread, but this study has found that tv might play a role, potentially a big role. And since I already know that tv does nothing good for my child and that his time would be better spent doing...well, just about anything else, then that's enough for me. I find the article to be extremely compelling in its case against tv for children under the age of three, not perfect, not without holes in the argument, not to be taken as fact without further scrutiny, but compelling, compelling enough to make me stop doing something that I know wasn't really good for my child anyway. And so the Teletubbie and Sesame Street season passes have been cancelled and the remote has been hidden. We are officially a no tv household, at least before Sam's bedtime we are - Hubby and I are working hard to get through the first season of Lost on DVD and there's no way we're stopping now! I think it's a good decision whether or not this study proves true (and there is already some major backlash and criticism of it). Sam and I have already had more tickle fights, read more books, and done more dancing than we would have on a regular morning. The question is: how am I going to get my shower?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Write with me!

So I think I’m going to be all daring and try and write a book. For quite some time, since the days where I taught in a middle school, I’ve had an idea for a novel for young audiences. I never really got anywhere with it, some character names and a written and rewritten first page that I didn’t even end up saving. But as of late I’ve been kind of flailing around, wondering what the heck it is that I’m doing with myself and what I intend to do with myself in the future. I must admit I need a little more than what I’ve got going on right now. It’s not that I don’t find being a stay at home mom to be fulfilling…well, maybe it is. Maybe that’s exactly what it is. I think right now I am lacking goals of my own, and that’s hard. So when Heather over at One Woman's World posted about National Novel Writing Month it was perfect. It’s time to get down to business and try to write this thing to see what comes of it; hopefully it will be more than 1 page this time.

I apologize in advance for my intended lack of blogging for the next month or so. Honestly I’ve been lame anyway when it comes to posting and commenting, as you may have noticed. Perhaps it’s time for a little blogging break. I don’t mean I’m going to disappear or anything. I think I’ll just post a little less often and relax about that, rather than feeling like it’s “been 3 whole days and I HAVE to get a post up.” No I don’t. Blogging is not an obligation – remember that all you blogging ladies because I know how hard it is to get caught up and then it’s not fun anymore.

Today I wrote the first page or so (again) and I have to say it was amazing to do something that had nothing to do with Sam. It was bizarre and weirdly exciting. I kept feeling like I should stop and write a children’s book instead so that I could somehow relate what I was doing to him. But I didn’t, and for half an hour I did something of my own. So for all of you out there who have ever had the inclination to try and write more than your blog, join me and go on over to the NaNoWriMo site and sign on up.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Top Three - Driving Music

So I think I'm going to start something new on my blog called "Top Three." It will, in essence, be a list of my top three...of anything I happen to want it to be that day - books, movies, songs, snacks, who knows what, and then an invitation for you to add your list in the comments. And I am not assigning it a day because that will just stress me out. I may try and stick to Fridays but it is possible that Top Three will be random, so you'll just have to keep a look out.

I decided to start this today because I was driving with Sam and listening to a totally awesome CD. I was lovin' it and I just thought to myself, "I have to tell someone about this totally awesome CD! Who can I tell? Who else would love this CD?" My first thought was Mama D, which I thought was cool in a lot of ways. It's funny how much blogging has permeated our lives, I think. I mean, I've never met D in person but I truly believe I know her well enough to know that she'd probably like what I was hearing, and she came to mind just as easily as any "in-person" friend would have. And then I thought of a few other CDs I've really loved as of late and how it's rare for me to find music I like because I just don't have access to what is current, you know, with my only human contact being a toddler and all. So I thought that maybe I could share some music picks with you guys, then you could respond with your own list, and then we'll all have a few new ideas for new possibilities.

So here goes, the first ever Top Three: Best CDs to listen to in the car. And let me just emphasize that with the exception of D you should probably listen to some songs on itunes or amazon or something before spending any money because jeez, I don't know what you like, this is just me.

1.The Killers - Sam's Town. This is the one I was listening to today. I'm not very familiar with their first release which, according to reviews, was their masterpiece. This new one just happened to be in the car because my husband just got it, but he did let me know that he knew I'd like them. Well, he was right. Great driving music with a really nice 80's influence I'd say. In fact, I'm pretty sure there is a synthesizer involved in the 3rd track. It's nostalgic but not in a depressing way, and there is a chain of songs, I think tracks 3-6, that are just about the best songs I've heard in months.

2. Dixie Chicks - Taking The Long Way. This is pretty uncharacteristic for me because I'm not a country fan. But when I heard all the hype about what they said about Bush and all that my interest was piqued so I decided to give them a shot. Besides, I've always loved me some good sing along with the ladies driving music and this most recent release of theirs fit the bill. For me, about half of this disc is really great and the other half I could take or leave. But the good part is really very good. Track 2 is chillingly lovely and bookended (tracks 1 and 3) by the strongest sing your guts out in the car songs since the Indigo Girls, hence its inclusion in the list.

3.Stellastarr - stellastarr. Talk about your 80's Brit pop influence! I love this album. Love it. In this case I am not going to recommend the most recent release from this band because their new one really left me wanting...wanting more of the female co-singer! I'll admit I am hugely swayed by female singers, probably because I love to sing in the car and singing along with a woman is somehow more fun for me. That said, this is a rockin' band very reminiscient of Pulp in my opinion, who I would like with or without the alto, and she just makes them that much cooler.

So there you have it - my first "Top Three." Now, if you will be so kind, please let me know what your favorite driving CDs are and maybe we'll all find something new and wonderful. Only rule: no kid music. Nope, sorry. That would totally defeat the purpose here. Adults only - I mean, kids can hear all of this stuff, it's just not written for children. And for the record, these all are my more recent picks. I didn't include things like Rites of Passage and Check Your Head because I figure if you're gonna listen to that stuff you've certainly already found it by now. So if you need a way to narrow your list down you could always choose the more recent music/bands so that we can all learn about the new music that we may not yet have encountered.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

We have a winner!

At long last...long, long last...my child is officially verbal. For the past few weeks Sam has been imitating our speech more and especially our intonation. Every so often we'd hear a vowel or consonant that was very similar to what we'd just said. As usual though it was never certain when he would make these sounds that he actually meant them as words. He would yell, "Mamama!" when pissed off at me, like when we'd stop nursing before he was ready (well, excuse me but he was going off and on over and over again and was looking away - God forbid I cover up the nummy!), but that seemed like more of a random expletive, if you will, as opposed to a word with an intended meaning such as, "Mommy, please do not cover your breast yet for I am not quite finished feeding." But this morning that all changed.

As we prepared to go grocery shopping I told him we needed to put our shoes on so we could go out. He went and got my sneakers and brought them to me. I said, "Thank you so much for bringing me my shoes." And he said, "sho." "Did you say shoe?" "Shess." "Shoe!" "Shs." And then we called Hubby on the phone because his word was deteriorating quickly. "Say shoes to Daddy." "Shiss." Works for me.

And so it's official - a first word. I was sure it would be car, but shoes are cool too. I'll take it.

Monday, October 09, 2006





Green and White

Unfortunately I am now in no mood to write anything because it just took Blogger over TWO HOURS to upload these measly photos. Seriously dude, seriously, do I have time for that? No. The answer is no. It is now time for bed.

I will say this though - is this not the cutest hoodie you have ever seen in your life? One of the many benefits of visiting in-laws: designer gifts that we could never ever afford nor would ever buy if it were up to us but since someone else bought it this time I guess we should just keep it because secretly it makes me salivate and I know it's a little big but I care not because it is so cute and fashionable and hip and unique and no one else will have it at the park and I get to have one really cool thing just this once so there!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Question for ya:

So we're visitng my in-laws for the long weekend right now. When I came to check my site here I saw that my banner is not up when I look at my blog from their computer. That's very strange. Can ya'll do me a favor and if you are here at my blog let me know if you see my banner up there? It should have pictures of Sam in a swing and the title "Total Mom Haircut." This is really annoying. Can a bunch of people not even see the title to my blog? Does anyone know why this might be? Thanks for responding - I appreciate it.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Workin' Out

So I went ahead and joined that gym with the childcare that I mentioned last week. I thought for just a few days a week Sam and I should have a little time away from each other, and the idea of getting to listen to some music while walking or do a yoga class was just way too tempting. I was only slightly worried about how he might respond to being left with strangers. I mentioned before that we've never left him with anyone other than family, but he's always been fine when I've gone away. I have no idea why. Mommy leaves less than an hour after Grammy and Grampy arrive - fine. Daddy tries to put him to bed with no Mommy - definitely not fine.

I wasn't sure exactly what to expect upon leaving him the first time, especially since it would be in a new place, and I was nervous. But when I walked him into the room he struggled to get free so that he could run over to the car toys (big shocker). I had to walk up to him and touch him to get his attention to let him know I was leaving for a bit, in case he turned around and all of a sudden I was gone. Yeah right, like he cared. There were cars, different cars, cars that were exponentially better than any cars that I could ever buy for him ever. He didn't care that I left and hardly cared when I returned. I checked in periodically to look through the window and make sure he was ok. Once he was pushing a car back and forth with another girl about his age. Once he was playing peek-a-boo with another kid under the slide. Once all the kids were doing something in the corner and then they all ran, herd-like through the rest of the room. I made sure he couldn't see me through the window in case it might upset him, but frankly I don't think it would have mattered. He was having a good time...without me.

I was about to start talking there about how torn I am and how deep down I wish he missed me and couldn't get on without me, but that's not really true. I was so proud of him. He's a little independent boy who can play with other kids and run in the herd. And I'm really happy that he can have fun with new people in new places. I'd like to take credit for his adaptability but I realize it's really not mine to take.

When I came to get him he wanted to show me all the great things in the room (ie. cars, a toy airplane, the play kitchen, the slide...and cars). One of the women said he'd been dancing for them a bit and that he'd been great, even laughed at her some. He's gone twice now and both times had the same response. He loves it, and then I go through the rest of the day feeling like I havn't gotten to see him at all because I walked on a tread mill for 30 minutes. Could he talk he'd probably be telling me to go to the gym, where it is more fun and far more exciting.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Rockin' out

So we took Sam to his first concert this past weekend. It was a free concert at the zoo and one of our favorite bands happened to be playing, Lunch Money. Sam really likes their CD and I'll admit, it is not offensive to the parental ear...ok, so really I like a few of their songs. So although we'd really be pushing nap time we ultimately decided it was worth the trip. Hubby and I recognized that we would probably enjoy the concert a lot more than Sam would, but how can you turn down a free concert at a place where you have a membership, making the whole thing free, free, free?

Well, we were totally wrong - Sam loved it. As soon as they started playing music he was dancing. I so wish we had the video camera because the pictures just don't do his moves justice. It was cute, really cute. When they were having the kids all jump during a song Sam tried to jump by going up on his toes over and over again. I have to admit I got a little misty from all the cuteness going around. I was really glad we went - very worth pushing back the nap a bit.

Clapping for the band...while eating a cracker...and sitting in goose poo.

This is his head bopping move, in which he bops his head to and fro while keeping the rest of his body totally rigid.

Waving back and forth move, in which he sways from side to side.

Squatting move, in which he stands immobile and bends his legs repeatedly.

Carefully approaching the stage.

Yes, I realize these pictures all look exactly the same. I told you, we didn't bring the video camera! We suck!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Birthday Girl

One of the best things that has ever happened for the relationship I have with my mother was becoming a mom myself.

After Sam was born my mother came and stayed with us. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made, and I will never forget the overwhelming love I felt for her and my baby.

The way that everything comes full circle in those first weeks home with your new baby - it's so hard and yet such an amazing milestone. You are there, a mother yourself, but needing so desperately to be mothered. My mom was there through some very difficult times, fulfilling every need, feeding me as though I were a child, helping me heal from a very difficult surgery followed by an infection, and assuring me along the way that I could do this mothering thing too, that she did it and had "done a damn fine job of it," and so could I.

This is my favorite picture of her. I love her smile. Beautiful.

When I look at these pictures I see myself in her and Sam in me. I am struck by how much I look like her, how much I act like her. She's the one who taught me how to be a mother, and I'm doing a damn fine job of it, if I do say so myself.

Today is my mom's birthday. She is probably one of your lurkers - she subscribes to bloglines, because she's cool like that, but she probably has never commented, because she's shy like that. But she knows who all of you are and even asks me about you specifically in her emails. So if you are here, please join me in wishing her a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!