Monday, November 30, 2009

Joseph's first Penguins game

A couple of weeks ago we went to the Thrashers v. Penguins game here in Atlanta. T.J. was so very excited to bring Joseph to see the Penguins. He even had to order gear online so that Joseph had a Penguins t-shirt.

Let's just say... Joseph prefers to watch games from home. The noise and the crowd were a bit scary for him, and he spent the majority of the first and second period bursting into tears any time the crowd started a cheer or someone made a good play. Poor Joseph. He and I played in the concourse for some of the 2nd period, and he fell asleep for the 3rd.

I think we'll try again - in about 3 years.


Before the game started
A rare smile
Close up - diving for the camera
That's a sad face. Poor guy. Doesn't it make you laugh though?
He did enjoy the Zamboni

What I wake up to every morning

Joseph is definitely a morning person. We'll see if that lasts into teen-hood! I snatched up the camera the other day for some morning shots:

If you think it looks like he's yelling...
You are right. He is.
Joseph is all smiles (and noise) when he wakes up!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Joseph's Favorite Toy

Joseph's most favorite "toy" in the WHOLE WORLD is the computer. Specifically, the keyboard. I just ordered a MacBook Pro today, so I'm hoping the keyboard from our old desktop will satisfy him. Somehow, I doubt it. Luckily I can still overpower him.

Open the laptop, Daddy, I need to check my email.
I'm doing very important things on the internets.
Arg. Romo, you are so worthless! You ruined my fantasy football game!
Mom, I'll be done soon. Please don't bother me.
Ok, I'll play nice, but only because I know these are for the grandparents.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

One Year Ago on DomerBaby

November 28 - December 4

  • Double digits - 98 days to go!
  • Look at baby grow - lots of baby pictures!
  • Baby gear - we kept the rocker (it's awesome) but sent the bassinet back. The quality of RH was pretty bad for the price. Good thing, as Joseph didn't want to be out of arms for 6 weeks!
  • Our Thanksgiving
  • By the numbers - weight gain, walking, and a Palin visit. Random.
  • Yoga - the best (and most important) session. I used yoga sounds throughout labor!
  • 3rd Tri - Made it!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Part III - The Family

Happy Thanksgiving a day late!

We're especially thankful this year for our healthy, happy baby boy.

Thanksgiving Part II - The execution


We celebrated with two couples and their babies. One couple moved her from France and the other couple never really celebrated Thanksgiving in their families, so this was everyone's first "big" Thanksgiving. It was fun sharing the tradition with them!

I'm going to review the dinner for myself so that I know what to do (and what not to do) next year:

Appetizers:
Crackers
Brie with lingonberry sauce
Gouda
Sharp Cheddar
Goat cheese
Red grapes
Mixed nuts

This was way too much (obviously). I knew that going in, but what cheese do you cut? Maybe the cheddar and goat cheese. Who can choose with cheese? It's like picking a favorite photo of Joseph - Impossible! I don't think anyone ate nuts. Nix them.

Dinner:

Turkey: T.J. reports that the bird seemed more tough this year (though he managed to put this into a question that reflected that it must be Butterball's fault, not my skillz. Good man!). I douse mine with gravy so I couldn't tell. I thought it was good for the meal, but seemed dry when I was deboning and today. Regardless, it looked SO beautiful!

Note to self: Fill bottom of pan with about 2 quarts of water before baking at 500 to control the smoke!

Dressing: The dressing was weird this year. I followed the recipe except added 1c of stock instead of 3/4 cup (and no liver), but I put it in the crockpot this year for 2.5 hours and it was soggy and mushy. Luckily I had time so I threw it in the oven uncovered for an hour and that seemed to revive it. I think I must usually put a lot more bread in there. Also I will make room in the oven for it from now on. Maybe I'll try putting the mashed potatoes in the crock instead.

Gravy: The gravy was tough - the first try didn't come together, so I did it a second time with butter instead of drippings. Even then I had to add cornstarch to thicken. Not sure what happened there. ::shrug:: Tasted fine, though. Next year I'm going to boil the turkey parts with some carrots, celery, onion, and a bay leaf while the turkey is cooking to use as the liquid instead of my precious chicken stock.

Green bean casserole: The green bean casserole... It sat out after cooking too long and was not as awesome as usual. I also tried doing the onions on the stove this year, but they still weren't that great. I give up. I'm buying a can next year to put in the green beans and homemade cream sauce.

Asparagus and avocado salad: I tossed everything but the avocado in dressing a few hours before dinner, then did the avocado about 30 minutes before dinner. I think I should have waited till the absolute last minute. Also, I blanched the asparagus for 3 minutes, which was too long. They were too soft. Besides that, I think this would be better for a different celebration (like in the summer). You don't really need a cold side at Thanksgiving!


Mashed Potatoes: The mashed potatoes were awesome. No changes needed, though I may use the crock pot for this next year.

Cranberry Sauce I loved the new cranberry sauce recipe. I forgot the orange, but next year I might add it and cut the sugar by half. I used dried apricots, cherries, and raisins for the dried fruit portion.

Sweet Potato Souffle: Came out great. Very sweet... but delicious!

Dessert:

Apple crisp (doubled the topping recipe) with vanilla ice cream: Was not bad. Lots of topping... maybe 1.5x is the solution. Great apple flavor. I cut the apples quite thin, and had to cook it an extra 10 minutes or so to get the top to brown - probably because there was so much of it.

Pumpkin pie with homemade crust and homemade whipped cream - Tasted a little funny... I subbed all spice for clove, and maybe it was just a lot of "spice". Still good, though. The crust - not so much. I suck at making pie crust. Will buy a crust (or maybe a whole pie) next year from Whole Foods or Trader Joe's.

All in all, I was very happy with dinner! Pictures up next!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving Part I - The Plan

Our Thanksgiving Menu - I'm not just bragging, this is so I can look back next year and remember what I did!

Appetizers:
Crackers
Brie with lingonberry sauce
Gouda
Sharp Cheddar
Goat cheese
Red grapes
Mixed nuts

Dinner:
Turkey
Dressing
Gravy
Mashed Potatoes
Cranberry Sauce (i forgot to put the orange in, but it's still excellent!)
Sweet Potato Souffle
Green bean casserole
Asparagus and avocado salad

Dessert:
Apple crisp (doubled the topping recipe) with vanilla ice cream
Pumpkin pie with homemade crust and homemade whipped cream

Joseph and I have been cooking all day! We made the pie, the crisp, the cranberry sauce, the souffle, most of the ingredients for the stuffing, the brine solution, and blanched asparagus and beans. I still have to brine the turkey tonight, roast garlic for the mashed potatoes, clean mushrooms and grapes, and pull the chicken stock that changed my life from the freezer that I'll need for tomorrow. Then I have to clean the kitchen, pick up the house, iron the linens for the table, pull the china, and fold the laundry. T.J. is in charge of the bathrooms and floors tomorrow, so that I can finish cooking!

Exhausting, but I LOVE making Thanksgiving dinner. If only we were having about 12 people instead of 6 - I made way too much food!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Joseph the underwear model

To make up for the puke and poo posts - here's Joseph in his longies. They aren't "brand new" photos, but better than nothing, right?

I was going to take a picture tonight

Joseph looked adorable with his face covered in prunes. They may be his most favorite food. He again ate the entire 2.5oz jar. This time, on his last bite, he ralphed the whole thing up. Again.

So, no pictures for you! Sorry.

I Can Jinx Myself Even Without Speaking

This morning, as I changed one of Joseph's stinky-but-roll-y poo diapers, I thought in my head "Gee, I'm so glad I didn't spring for the diaper sprayer, since his in-between poo only lasted about a month". Then, 15 minutes later, I heard a "Pffffftt". I look down at Joseph, who is playing on the floor with his back turned to me (thank goodness). There is poo up his shirt and on the outside of his cover. Oy. So off to the changing pad we go. 3 diapers, 4 cloth wipes and a few dunks in the toilet later, and he's clean and fresh again.

Babies can be so gross.

ps. I still don't think I'm going to get the sprayer.

pps. I'm convinced the mess would have been worse with a disposable. I just wish he'd had a fitted instead of a prefold on - the elastic back would have probably contained all the mess!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A couple of great breastfeeding articles

These articles are from a wonderful blog started by another mother I know and respect well - check them out!

Breastfeeding does NOT cause cavities! - Great info about night feeding

10 Tips to Breastfeeding for a Year - Getting the support you need is #1!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

One Year Ago on DomerBaby

November 21 - November 27

  • Sick Day - the stomach bug goes around
  • First sewing project - I can't say I've progressed much in a year.
  • Fried Turkey - baby belly + hot iron = ouch!
  • Tim the Toolman - not baby related, but cute.
  • Cord blood - my take on banking.
  • It's here - Melamine in baby formula it's easy to forget this stuff quickly, but important to remember that there are *many* benefits to breastfeeding. Even unintended ones.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Independent Baby

This has been on my mind a lot lately, as Joseph gets older and still needs us so much at night, and we get more and more "side eyes" about how much and where he wakes/eats/sleeps. This isn't about any single person's opinion, so just in advance - this post is not about some conversation I had with you, reader (unless you are the girl at LLL described below)!

I had a good discussion on Wednesday about sleep at my La Leche League meeting. One woman said something that hit home with me. There is this push to have "independent babies" in our culture, and parents get pressure from friends, family, even colleagues, about nighttime parenting.

This woman discussed with her husband and decided to give their daughter permission to need them at any time. So interesting. It seems so obvious, but often times we're pressured by society to think that at night a baby shouldn't (or doesn't) need you; it should sleep and wake up in the morning to be tended to. But it's generally just not true! Sure, there are some babies who sleep from 7pm to 7am without a squeak. But that's not most people's normal. And even if it was, why wouldn't I just accept that Joseph is different than other kids. I already accept that he is more brilliant than those other babies (I kid, I kid!)

Anyway, I just wanted to put that out there. I'm giving Joseph permission to need me, too.

Joseph still needs me at night, and that's OK with me.

FO: Joseph's Longies!

FINALLY! Well, it only took a month, but sometimes my "big" projects seem to take forever.

If you are on ravelry, the pattern info is here. For all you non cloth diaperers, once I prep these, they will be a diaper cover for Joseph. I love reducing one step in dressing him! They look ridiculously long because I built in extra length to fold the top over and roll up the legs so that it'd grow with him. I hope they fit him!

Next up: A couple of toddler hats for my friend Dawn's two kids!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

An amazing wife, mother, and friend passed away today.

Shelly was a really great person. Her baby, Ella, is a few weeks older than Joseph. We met for coffee a few times, and I went to help her after one of her surgeries left her too weak to care for Ella on her own.

She had Crohn's Disease, and had to stop taking one of her medications while pregnant, which made her condition worse. After Ella was born, she had a couple of surgeries, and ended back in the hospital several weeks ago after I saw her.

Her husband, daughter, and family need all the thoughts and prayers you have.

You can donate to her family here if you can. I know the last year has been severely financially draining for them, besides the obvious emotional toll.

Shelly, you will be missed.

An awesome Wednesday

Some days are better than others. Obviously. Well, yesterday - specifically last night - was one of the nicest times we've had together as a family yet. Joseph was entertaining us by rolling around to get his toys, laughing and playing for quite a while. Then we had a great evening nursing session and cuddle time while T.J. and I chatted. Joseph joined in the conversation, too. I'm sure whatever he was saying was really profound, if only we could have understood it. Really, it was a great evening. A perfect contrast to the day before!

Just more proof that whatever is going on, you know it won't stay that way for long.

And I don't think Joseph is going to make it till Christmas without crawling. He is determined to move about now. I was hoping he'd wait so I wouldn't have to baby-proof a Christmas tree! Oh well, there's no stopping this kid!

Contrition Photos - As promised

Me, a troublemaker? Nah!
Who could resist a face like this?
Come on Mom, I didn't mean do drive you crazy!
I'll be much better tomorrow, I promise!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My big fat exhausting day

I took lots of pictures of Joseph tonight, in order to remind myself what a beautiful little angel he is. Why do I need reminding, you ask? One heck of a long day.

1) Joseph learned to pull up - on his co-sleeper. Not good. Luckily I was nearby and he didn't tumble out. He is also starting to roll to his destination. Nowhere is safe now.
2) Joseph ate his nerf ND football. Literally there are chunks missing. Luckily he did not choke and die. The big chunks are not in his tummy, so no emergency trips to the ER.
3) Joseph covered himself in paint from our craft project.
4) Joseph is having digestive issues, so we went and bought prunes today. He loved them - ate 2.5 oz at once - then took a bite of sweet potato (his favorite) and promptly threw up all the prunes plus the milk from his last nursing session. Brilliant! Of course, this was after his bath from the paint.
5) He slept maybe 2 hours worth of nap today - not enough. And stayed up till 9:30pm.
6) He is teething again, which makes him grumpy.
7) And he has separation anxiety.

Joseph 1, Mommy 0

Tomorrow's another day. A day in which I'll post those pictures I mentioned.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Struggling with toys

Yesterday we went and picked up three new toys for Joseph for Christmas. Well, he'll play with them now and we'll stick a bow on them and put them under the tree on Christmas morning. They are all big, plastic, loud, and bright. He's IN LOVE with them. ::sigh::

We'd love to only have safe wooden toys. We'd love for him to "use his imagination" all the time and play with wooden spoons. But the truth is, Joseph is drawn to the bright colors, lights, and sometimes the noise. The plastic works well because it's light and sturdy, and frankly, it's affordable.

So, we're making compromises. We do prefer non-plastic, for both the environmental impact AND his own safety. There are a lot of nasty chemicals [read: neurotoxins] in plastic. But at least from an environmental standpoint, buying these things used (which we did, and will do as much as we can) keeps these toys out of landfills, and doesn't require additional fossil fuel resources to make. And I don't know for sure, but I think used is better health-wise, too, as the plastic has had a chance to off-gas.

So our strategy is to buy safe, buy used, and buy LESS. I don't think it's a terrible strategy.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

One Year Ago on DomerBaby

November 14 - November 20

Friday, November 13, 2009

Music Class

So some friends and I organized a "music class" for our Mom's Group. I use the term very loosely. Hehe. It's fun though.

Xylo...what? I'm pretty sure this is just a teething toy, Mom.
At least he's not the only one who spends the whole "class" eating stuff.
What do you mean the keyboard is supposed to go on the top side?

When good lighting goes bad

I took these pics when the light was low, so they are grainy and photo-shoppy. But I knew the Grandmas wouldnt' care.

A flash of the pearly whites

His standard hands-in-the-air position.
You'd think he was tighrope walking. Nope, just sitting.

Nom Nom Nom Ohmygodthissippyissoawesome Nom Nom Nom

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Baby's First Bump

Poor Joseph. Today he received his first self-inflicted bump on the head. He was sitting at the table in his travel chair, and he must have been supporting his weight with his hand (which was on the seat) and slipped or something, because he just bonked his head right on the table.

Deep breath, red face, panic-y "I'm in so much pain" cry ensued.

My poor baby. He's only cried like that before for shots - though this was much worse. I guess it's just the beginning of soothing him because he's hurt himself.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Joseph is 8 months old!

We can't believe that he's already 3/4 of a year [EDIT: by 3/4 I meant 2/3]. Insane! He's really an amazing little boy. Slowly but surely, he's starting to turn into a "child" rather than a baby, though luckily we have at least a few months of babyhood left!

Today he is starting to push himself backwards in his attempts to get up in the air and crawl. Pretty exciting! He is also enjoying learning how zippers work, getting turned upside down by daddy, and trying lots of new foods!

On a more personal front, I am now back down to my pre-pregnancy weight! Yey! I still need to do some serious exercising, but things are definitely "shifting" back a little bit. Now if I can get rid of my "raisin" tummy... hehe!

I've uploaded some photos and video to smugmug, so go check them out!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Guess what happened last night!?!

Joseph slept in his CRIB!!! All night long! Woo hoo!

We sidecarred it to our bed (took down one railing and put it flush against our mattress. I can nurse him from there, but he has his own space. Not only did he fall asleep in there, he slept pretty well! I only put him in our bed at 6am to nurse him on the other side and we got up at 7.

And he only woke up one time from 12:30am to 6am!

We could definitely live with this arrangement!

One Year Ago on DomerBaby

November 7 - November 13

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Down to two naps!

Joseph had been having trouble getting to sleep at night and during naps, so I figured it was time to go down to two naps from three. So far it's going well! He really slept a ton today - 2:15 in the morning and another 2 hours in the afternoon! Plus he's been asleep now for 3 hours without waking up! This is nothing to sneeze at, as the last two months he's been waking up every 45 minutes to an hour at night! I think I may have hit upon one possible reason!

So now we're loosely following a 2-3-4 routing - up for two hours before nap #1, 3 hours before nap #2, and then 4 hours before bed. Right now he tends to be up 2-3-3 or 2-4-3, but we don't get very rigid around here about schedules.

Yey for sleep!

Coincidentally, the new book Nurtureshock by Po Bronson has an interesting chapter on children and sleep. Basically, children who don't get enough sleep perform several GRADES below their ability. It also has long-term affects on the brain. I've been reading some of the different chapters in it (each chapter is a different topic) and it's really cool. Sort of like Freakonomics, but the topics are all about children. Check it out!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A Walk in the Park

Yesterday was a beautiful day, so we thought we'd head to the zoo to enjoy what we thought was a free admittance day. Not so much. Ooops! So we went for a walk in Grant Park instead. It was nice anyway, even if there weren't any fun chimps monkeying around!

Daddy getting ready to swing with Joseph
Wheeeeeeeeeeee!
That's quite a push!
Too high, Daddy! Eep!
Getting grounded
Trying again - a little slower
Much better!
Joseph loves to swing!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Cheer, Cheer for Old Note Dame

Joseph learned to clap! Just in time for ND vs. Washington State!

He's doing so much neat stuff now. Along with clapping, he learned to bang toys together. He's also rolling around more, too. I think he's starting to understand how to move himself a bit.

You can almost see the wheels turning, lately!

video

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