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Monday, January 31, 2011

one small step for Blake...

one giant gasp from Mom!

Blake took his first steps last night. I was laying on the floor beside him while he crawled around and played. He would stand on his own and sit down. I wasn't really paying attention at all. Then out of the corner of my eye I saw him shuffle his left foot forward! I sat up and gasped so loudly that Evan jumped off the couch because he thought I'd seen a roach. You see, we're trained around here to know that gasps can mean roaches. So when we hear a gasp, we run for the Raid. Luckily, it wasn't a common household pest.

Best of all, Evan was able to see him take 2 consecutive steps AND we caught the tiniest step of all on video.

Without further ado, the world premier of Blake's first step!

video

(That's actually Blake squealing with delight. Where did my little baby go!?)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Our First Winter in Brooklyn

36 inches of snow so far this year. 51 days until spring.


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

breast vs. bottle vs. milk bank?

I hadn't really decided one way or the other whether I was going to exclusively breastfeed Blake when he was born. I did know that I wanted to try, and I resolved not to beat myself up about it if I decided not to breastfeed him.

It was an extremely painful 3 months that I breastfed Blake. From the get go I didn't produce enough milk to even begin to adequately nourish him. People kept telling me my milk would come in and then I'd be so engorged that I wouldn't be able to wait until the next feeding just to relieve the pressure. Guess the girls never got the memo.

And even though I think I fought a good fight when it came to breastfeeding, I still feel a twinge of guilt when someone asks me if I breastfeed Blake or when I hear other mothers discussing the ups and downs of breastfeeding. It's even worse when people react with shock when I say I stopped after 3 months.

It wasn't until Blake was about 6 months old that I heard about breast milk banks. Mothers donate their breast milk so we non-producers can make sure our babies get breast milk, even if it isn't from us. The idea of human milk banks is kind of weird to me. And at sometimes $40 for an 8 oz. bottle, it really isn't an option for me (because I'd like to eat, and more than that, I want my child to have clothes). Groups like Eats On Feets help connect women who need breast milk with women who want to donate theirs. Except Eats On Feets doesn't screen their donors. That's the responsibility of the recipient (and that can mean paying for blood tests, etc.)

I've always maintained the philosophy that most mothers are trying to do what's best for their babies. Is breast milk better for babies? Of course it is. But not every mother's cup runneth over when it comes to that aspect of motherhood.

So breastfeed (or don't), formula feed (or don't), or use someone else's breast milk (or don't). You decide. You're the mom!


(And I'll be honest, I have a hard time believing breastfed kids are smarter than us formula babies. At least not by any significant margin. Just look at Eats On Feets. It's foot, not feets...hehe!)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Sugar...ah honey honey

Honey. One of the things babies aren't supposed to have before they are 1 year old.

I know that. I was told even before Blake was born that babies shouldn't have honey. I reminded Evan yesterday that Blake can't have any of the Honey Nut Cheerios we now have in the pantry.

So, you can imagine my utter shock when Evan told me tonight that I've been feeding Blake HONEY graham crackers...and that the word HONEY is written all.over.the.box.

I just stared at my husband. And then chuckled nervously. And then rushed to my computer to look up symptoms of infant botulism.

Blake doesn't seem to be exhibiting any signs of botulism (still pooping...a lot, eats well, not drooling excessively, active, happy, etc).

Just when I think I have the mom thing down, I go and do something like give my 10 month old something with honey in it. I wish I could blame lack of sleep, but Blake's been doing a great job of sleeping. Oh! Maybe because I now have annoying floater in my right eye, it was covering up the word "honey" when I bought the box of grahams. Maybe. Probably not.

In more positive news, I am now the mother to a 10 month old baby. So in 2 months I'll have a toddler...who CAN have honey.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Dear Society,


I'm guessing you don't see anything wrong with this picture because you helped create this image of "beauty". So I'll fill you in on what I, and I hope many other people, find disturbing about this picture:

Her ribcage. You can actually see the outline of her ribcage. 

Now, people will argue that she's naturally thin. And maybe she is. And if there's an uproar over this photo I'm sure she'll say that she actually doesn't think about what she looks like and eats whatever she wants. Maybe she does. But I'm guessing that's not really true, especially being in an industry where your looks are what get you the job.

Unfortunately many young girls and women will see this picture and decide that in order to be beautiful they should be this skinny, they should sport the ribcage look. So it's not enough to be skinny, we have to look borderline emaciated.

I don't get it. I really don't.

Sincerely disgusted,
Whitney

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

advice. you know, the kind you didn't ask for...

It's a funny thing, having a child. I'm learning that some people see it as an open invitation to advise you on how to properly raise your child. Now, I'm all for advice when I've asked for it, or when I'm having difficulty with something and people offer suggestions on what worked for them. That kind of advice I'll take. But, I won't take the kind of advice that comes from people who a) don't know what they are talking about and b) who have only spent 0.98482 seconds around my son. Case in point:

While I'm sure the man I was sitting next to last week was only trying to be nice, I did not appreciate him telling me NOT to help my son stand as he struggled to pull himself up. In hushed tones this man TOLD me to let Blake do it on his own. And then when Blake eventually pulled himself up to stand, this man looked at me and said, "See! He can do it. You have to let him do it himself." And this is the point at which I wanted to say some not very nice things to this person. It's very simple, you see. I spend 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with my child. There are rarely times when I am away from him for more than an hour. I see him stand up on his own, lose his balance, then catch himself before he falls. I know what he is capable of. I know that he can stand on his own. I also know that sometimes he needs a little help.

I guess what upsets me more than someone telling me what to do in regards to my son is that this person thinks because of him, Blake stood up on his own. Newsflash: he's been doing that for about a month now. And it had nothing to do with this man...at all.

Something else I've learned with having a child is that sometimes people make really weird comments. Comments that aren't meant to be offensive and shouldn't be taken as such, but just make me stop and wonder, "Why would you say that?" Case in point:

My almost 10 month old son likes to growl. I don't know why. He just likes to make a low growling sound sometimes when he's playing. It's probably my fault. I like to play with him (heaven forbid) and sometimes I make a roaring sound if I'm chasing him. To me his growls are cute, but I know sometimes people look at him like something is wrong with him. So when a lady who was sitting near me said to someone sitting nearby, "He sounds like something from The Exorcist," I wasn't sure what to think. No, that's not true. I thought, "Why would you say that?! What is wrong with you? Even if you really thought that, couldn't you just keep the comment to yourself?" Maybe I'm just being a little over-protective of my child. I don't know.

But I do know that while I will probably smile and take unsolicited advice kindly, in my mind I'm generally rolling my eyes and trying to figure out ways to avoid this person in the future.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Regrets

I’ve been thinking lately about things I would change if I could go back in time. 2 things have come to mind. They aren’t big things. In fact, they are kind of silly. I should probably feel good about having such silly things to regret. But I inherited the worry gene from my mother, so it’s in my blood.

1)  I would have taken my baby on the last day of school so my students could meet him. I was just so stressed out and ready to be done with everything holding me back from being here. I should have taken Blake with me so my students could see how cute he was. I feel bad about that. Funny thing is, those 4th graders probably won’t think about it at all…ever.


2)  I had a student in my class who didn’t really have any friends. And I knew why. He was just different. He was interested in things that weren’t considered cool, he wasn’t very athletic, but he wanted desperately to be a part of a group. He would play tag with a group of kids at recess. Unfortunately those kids had all gotten together and decided that if anyone got tagged, they would just go tag this kid. So he was always it. He would complain to me after recess and I suggested he find some new kids to play with. I didn’t know how to help him. I liked this student. I could see how he would wear on other people, but I saw his struggles and I prayed (literally) that he would one day find a person who could be his friend. We had class discussions throughout the year on including everyone and being kind to people in our class. Sometimes it helped. Sometimes it didn’t.

Aside from being smart, this student was amazing at not getting his work done and had the messiest desk I have ever seen. He could literally sit and daydream for an entire lesson. I would ask him a million times to get to work. I would kneel down by his desk and help him with each problem. He knew how to do the work. He would just get distracted. 

One day when he was out of his seat and wasting time I asked him what he was doing. He froze, gave me the, “Oh no, I’m caught” look. Jokingly I asked if it was his evil twin who wasn’t doing what he was supposed to. I gave his evil twin a name and it rhymed with his name. (This was a joke I had with my brother when we were growing up. He’d blame everything on his evil twin, whose name rhymed with his.)

Unfortunately the joke got away from me. Other kids started calling the student by this name. I felt terrible. Only 5 minutes after I had made the joke, I publicly apologized to my student and told the rest of my class that they weren’t to call him that name and if they did there would be consequences. I explained to them that I was only joking, but a joke is never funny if someone’s feelings get hurt. I asked this student to stay after school that day. I apologized again and asked if I had hurt his feelings. He said, “Umm, a little I guess.” I apologized for a third time and told him if anyone called him that name that he was to tell me. 

My fear is that someone will remember that joke and will start calling him that. It’s not like it’s a bad word, the name isn’t even a real name. I just don’t want him to be made fun of all because of something I said. I don’t want him to remember his 4th grade teacher as a jerk. 

(Ok, I felt so bad that when I found a star trek toy in my fruit loops, I took it to school and gave it to him. He looked at me like I was a weirdo and I had to remind him that he was Spock for Halloween. Then he told me his mom thought of the costume and that he didn’t really like Star Trek. But then he took the toy anyway. Maybe he’ll remember that instead.)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Blake at the office

video
Blake likes to listen to music while he checks his email. He finds it makes him more productive.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

payback

Blake's always been a good eater. I've never really had to deal with him refusing to eat. In fact, Evan and I practically have to defend our own plates from Blake when we eat dinner. He even liked to eat broccoli...keyword: liked.

I love broccoli. I thought I had passed those broccoli lovin' genes on to my son. Apparently not. Yesterday during lunch I only had broccoli to feed Blake and as of late he hasn't been a fan. It doesn't really matter what I mix it with, he just gags or spits it back out. I can usually get him to eat half of what I give him. But this time he refunded...like a disgusting fountain of green and white. I literally just stood in front of him saying, "I don't know what to do! I don't know what to do!" I didn't have any paper towels and he was just sitting there, in a huge pool of...well you know.

So I did my best with baby wipes and a wash cloth. He ended up in the bath tub, though. I couldn't get the broccoli and cottage cheese out of the little creases of his neck...eww. Did I mention this was the second time he had been in the bathtub yesterday? The first time was because he pooped all.over.himself.

Broccoli is off the menu until further notice.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Dear designers of panty hose,

Seriously!? You do realize these things are meant to be worn by humans, right?

Sincerely uncomfortable,

Whitney

Friday, January 7, 2011

made late by a roach

The day started off like any other day: Wake up, feed Blake, go back to sleep with Blake, put Blake in crib, shower, get ready, feed Blake again, talk to myself about the things I need to take to my doctor's appointment, see a roach...wait, a roach?

The following is the conversation I had in my head upon seeing the...you know, all with Blake watching from his crib:

Oh my gosh oh my gosh oh my gosh oh my gosh oh my gosh...ok, it's on its back so it must be dead. What kind of roach just likes to hang out on its back? Ok, so it's dead. I'm gonna grab my camera and take a picture of it so I can show my mom and sister just how big these things are. I mean, it's dead, it's not going anywhere, right? Zoom in, snap picture. Maybe I can just take care of it when I get back from my appointment. No, because if it's not really dead and I come home and can't find it, I will throw up. Ugh I'm going to have to pick it up with a paper towel and throw it away. Wait! I'll get the broom, sweep it into the dustpan, then throw it away. Ok, here we go. Careful, careful, (audible scream). It's not dead! It just moved! Oh gosh it's not dead! I'm going to have to step on it with my shoe. The last time I stepped on one of these the crunch was so loud I can still hear it in my mind. Maybe I should put on one of my snow boots. At least I'll be protected from anything roachy up to my calf. No, just do it with the shoes you have on. Ok, just do it. You can't let this one get away. I hate you, you stupid roaches! I won't let you ruin my liiiiiiiiiiiife! Ok, 1, 2, 3...I can't do it! Wait, I'll get the Raid! Yes, yes, the Raid! Point and spray....die you disgusting roach! DIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEEE!! (audible scream) Ewww it's twitching! Ok, now I'll sweep it into the dustpan, put it in this plastic bag, put it in the trashcan, and throw the trash away on my way out. Ugh you disgusting roach! You are making me late!

Yep, I took a picture of it. And yep, I thought about putting on one of my snow boots just to kill it. And yes, that stupid roach made me late to my doctor's appointment. But at least it's out of my house.

What did I learn from today's events? I have to take care of roaches a lot faster than I did today. It took me 10 minutes just to remember that I had a can of Raid in the kitchen. So here's the plan for future sightings...because I know there are going to be future sightings (shudder):

1) Scream
2) Grab can of Raid
3) Spray
4) Spray some more
5) Spray more just for good measure
6) Clean up mess

Now if only I could find a Raid holster to wear around the house...

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Note to self

*Scheduling your baby's well visit during nap time is a sure-fire way to ruin about 3 hours of your life.