Friday, September 28, 2012

House Hunters Part III, et. al.

Home just popped on the market yesterday and we are in FULL ON BID WAR MODE.  BRING IT!

This house has EVERYTHING we want (well, everything major)...

--Good floorplan
--Updated everything--kitchen, bath, etc (flipper house)
--Just a 5-minute WALK to our top choice of elementary school
--Great, simple backyard

Fingers crossed again!

In other news, the next few weeks are going to be horrible.  My work project has taken over every inch of life.  5:30 am conference calls, drafting until 1 or 2 am at night, all day all weekend drudge.

Just shoot me now.

And you'd think by now I would not miss Judah so much when I go to work.  But everyday I pine away for him in my office (even though when I actually see him, I'm super annoyed at all his antics and constant willful disobedience).

And in other other news, I'm totally hooked on The Voice.

I've never seen this show until last week, but it's AWESOME. Still haven't figured out what happens after all the judges finish picking their teams, but I imagine it's going to be like American Idol?

And I'm not going to lie, I tear-up in every contestant back-story involving a loving parent and child. Ack! Parenthood has turned me into such an easily exploitable sap!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Simple Judah

I love you so.  That is all.

House Hunters Part II

We are in a bidding war.  And we are going to lose.

The verdict will be passed in T-3 hours and I already know we're going to lose.

Why?  Because we just don't love it enough to bid high enough to win it.

I guess it's back to the ol' drawing board, as they say.

Monday, September 24, 2012

House Hunters

We've been looking to buy a new home for the last year or so and have found something wrong with everything.

Too small, too big, too pricey, too close to electrical wires, bad backyard, noisy neighbros, bad floorplan, bad flow, narrow hallways, etc, etc, etc.

But now it's crunch time. The baby is coming (or as I like to call it--Babemaggedon--since I absolutely dread the chaos and sleep-deprivation that is bound to occur). So we need to get settled. Now!  My spidey-mom nesting instincts are tingling like crazy.

So we put our picky preferences aside and bit the bullet--we put in an offer yesterday. We're competing against 2 other bidders and I'm biting my nails, hoping, hoping, hoping they'll choose us.

By the end of today, I'll either be celebrating with a bowl of icecream, or comforting myself with that same bowl.

I guess that's kind of a win-win.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Bump

Yesterday I had a short conversation with a coworker I haven't seen in a while...

She: Wow, you're pregnant!  When are you due?

Me: In January!

She: Wow, that's still a ways off.  You're huge!  Are you having twins?

Me: [What I wanted to say]  Wow, that's incredibly rude!  You're soooo old and ancient-looking, you should know better.  What are you, 75? 80? (In reality, she's probably just 60.)

Me: [What I actually said]  Um, nope, just one baby!

But kinda makes me wonder, do I really look that big?  You be the judge...

Me and my giant middle.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Judah's Prayers

Me: Do you want to pray Judah?
Judah: Yeah!  Pray!
Me: Close your eyes and fold your hands.  Dear God...
Judah: Dear God...
Me: Thank you for my toys...
Judah: Thank you for my toys...
Me: and my choo-choos...
Judah: and my choo-choos...
Me: In Jesus' name
Judah: In Jesus' name
Me: Amen.
Judah: Amen!

Judah: Again!

Me: Okay...Dear God...
Judah: Dear God...
Me: Thank you for daddy
Judah: Thank you for daddy...and mommy, and Delia, and Naty, and Cello...
[Trust me, these are real people, long story.]
Me: In Jesus' name...
Judah: Amen!

Judah: Again!

Me: Okay, last time...Dear God...
Judah: Dear God...
Me: Help me...
Judah: Help me...
Me: Be a good boy.
Judah: *total silence*

Me: So, you don't want to be a good boy huh?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Be Nice

Hi!  It's me, just real quick.  I'm buried under piles and piles of work.  But I just HAVE to get some things down.  Cuz if I don't I'll explode, or rather, I'll just keep thinking about how much I want to blog about you and be completely distracted and inefficent at work.

Last Sunday you were a cranky screaming banshee.  You started an epic meltdown 90 minutes before your usual bedtime and I took that as a sign that you were pretty darn ready to go to bed right that minute!  You screamed and wailed no matter how I tried to soothe you so I decided I should just put you in your crib, close the door and walk out.

As you saw me turning to leave, you turned up your meltdown to high-terror-alert RED (which I've never seen before and definitely scared the crap out of me).  Your voice got 50 decibals louder and you started jumping up and down like a frantic lunatic.  So of course I stayed in your room and tried to calm you down.

And as you laid in bed wailing, you said "Mommy, no leave.  Mommy, be nice.  Be nice."

That took my breath away.  You've always begged me to stay, but you've never asked me to 'be nice' before.  It seems you've graduated to another level of cognition--not just asking for physical acts, but appealing to my psychological motivations--asking me to find it in my heart to be kind and stay with you.  Unbelievable.

Lately, in general, you've just been so much more expressive about what you're feeling too.  You've gone from merely describing things like "This is apple.  This is blue," to actually talking about how you feel about them.  Now you'll exclaim "I love it!  I love it!" or "This is yummy!  I like it!" or "This is fun!"

Or my favorite, which you'll say at random times "Mommy, I so happy."  Awwww, I'm happy too baby.

You are quite the little communicator!

I guess it's no surprise as your dad is one of the MOST talkative people I've ever met, heck he does it for a living.  And your mom ain't a quiet person either!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I Gone Cry

Sometimes I feel such overwhelming mom guilt.

Yesterday I was trying to get Judah ready for bed and he once again acted up and refused to cooperate.  He wiggled around and absolutely refused to let me put his overnight diapers on.  Diaper creams, powders, flailing toddler kicks--it was a total mess.  And then it was another WWF wrestling match to get his pajamas on.

Then when it came time to brush his teeth he would not open his mouth.  Or he would open it and chomp down on the toothbrush sucking out all the delicious sweet toothpaste and very deftly avoided having the brush touch any tooth surface.  Such a talented kid.

Throughout each of these struggles, I'd tell him he needs to be a good boy or else he's going to get a time out.  And do you know how he responded?  By repeating "I a bad boy!  I bad boy!  I want timeout!"

At the peak of this rebellion I just lost it.  I yelled at him--JUDAH, OPEN YOUR MOUTH AND GIVE ME THE TOOTHBRUSH.  NOWWWWWW!!!!!!

Something in my tone must've startled him (or maybe it was the sheer volume) because his eyes instantly welled up with tears.  But instead of crying he just looked at me with his eyes brimming.

If he had just cried and wailed I wouldn't have felt so bad.  It would've been just a normal reflexive reaction to the yelling.

But instead he looked at me and did something I never saw him do before.  He said, "Mommy, I gone cry."

Why was he telling me this?  Why not just cry? 

It felt like he was asking for permission.  Like he wanted to cry but was afraid that I'd get upset if he did.  Like he was trying to be brave and not upset me but he wanted me to know that I hurt his feelings.

The pitifulness of it all just broke my heart.  All night long as I was drifting to sleep I ruminated and replayed his little voice saying--Mommy, I gone cry.

It's so funny how parents know when it's ok for their child to be crying and when it's not.  When I'm calmly dishing out discipline to Judah and he cries his head off, I feel nothing but rightness about the situation.  I told you the consequence, you chose to disobey and now you are suffering the pain of those consequences.

And then there are times I feel nothing but guilt.  The rage, the blown fuse, the completely frayed last nerve standing.

Nothing makes me understand like a whirling dervish toddler that, indeed, patience is a virtue...of which I have so little.

Friday, September 07, 2012


It's so great to have Judah's cousin, Manfred, living nearby.

We're just a coupla innocent kids left at the laundromat.  Can we come home with you?

Manfred recently turned 1 this summer and the two of them are interacting a lot more now that Manfred can walk on his own and is generally more 'aware' of things around him.

Just kidding!  We are hilarious!

I feel like they have similar facial features, but in very different face-shapes.  Kinda like Mr. Potato-heads where one face is long and the other is round.

If I lean forward and he leans backward we won't tip over!

I hope they'll always live close by and have some great boyhood adventures together!  I can only imagine the mischief these two silly-billies will get into left to their own devices!

Did I mention that we're hilarious?

Thursday, September 06, 2012

You at Two

Finally, the 3 week sh*tstorm of work has let up a little and I can write a little snapshot of you at the ripe old age of 2!

But what can I say about my sweet baby boy? How can I possibly describe all the wonderful ways you make me smile every time I think of you?

Sometimes I forget that you just turned 2 cuz you act like you understand everything I’m saying. You are so incredibly responsive and talkative and you continually shock me with your level of comprehension.

Here’s some of my favorite conversations with you:

You: Mommy, where my train?
Me: Um, I think it’s behind the couch.
(You walk behind the couch and spot your train)
You: Oh! Thank you!

We literally have this conversation 10 times a day. It’s that little “Oh!” that gets me every time. So adult sounding.


You: Mommy, where my truck?
Me: I don’t know Judah. You throw your toys everywhere.
You: Oh…don’t worry, I find it later.


You (while doing something dangerous): Mommy, look, look, look, look Mommy, look, look, Mommy, look,…
(But it sounds like: Mommy, luke, luke, luke...)


You (while doing something that makes me burst out laughing): I funny boy.


Me: Judah, you have to sit in your car seat. PLEASE! (after you resists for the 50th time)
You (magically, out of the thin blue air): Ok, I good boy! (and you give up all struggle and sit nicely in your seat).

Needless to say I LOVE when you decide to be a ‘good boy’.


Me: Ow! (after clumsily inflicting injury on myself somehow)
You: Mommy are you ok? Ok? Mommy?
Me: Yeah, I’m fine.
You: Massage, massage (while massaging me). Feel better?


Me (panicked because I've lost sight of you): Judah!  Where are you?!  Judah?!
You: I right here!
(But it sounds like: I rah hah!)

Your favorite activities are:

--Reading. You can literally sit and have us read you books until Jesus comes back. Sometimes you want the same story 5 times. You don’t seem to care what story it is but some favorites are The Lorax, Stop That Ball! (which you call Ball Tuba cuz there’s a scene where the ball gets stuck in a tuba), Sam and the Firefly, and any Curious George.

--Playing with Trains. A generous friend lent us a huge box full of Thomas trains and tracks and you’ve literally played with it every single day since you’ve gotten them 2 months ago. Every. Single. Day. You say “Mommy, I want play choo-choos. First build the track. Then choo-choo go round the track!”

--Driving. Every time we park the car in the driveway…EVERY. Single. Time. You always say “Judah drive, little bit, little bit. And then go home.” So if I want to avoid a total meltdown, I’ll put you in the driver’s seat as you proceed to push every button possible. The emergency lights, the interior car lights, the wipers. But most annoying is when you force feed me Altoids from the tin we keep in front. Maybe you’re just politely trying to tell me my breath stinks. But regardless, it’s annoying. And you always want to turn on the radio, “Music, no too loud” you always say.

--Playing with Nenes (that’s little kids in Spanish). You love playing with kids of all ages--1 to 91. You make me troll around the neighborhood with you looking for playmates. “Mommy, where the nenes?” you always ask. Playing with other toddlers usually entails just copying what they’re doing. Running around, flapping your arms, jumping up and down. It’s weird what passes for socialization at your age.

Your favorite foods are:

--Spicy chips! Specifically, Salsa Picante chips from Tias. They are seriously adult-spicy. You MUST dip them in sour cream and sip milk to wash down the spice.

--Strawberries. I love how you call them strawbay-bays. You’re also pretty fond of blackberries and raspberries although you strangely won’t tolerate blueberries.

--Watermelon (Wa-wa-melon)

--Cantaloupe (Camolope)

--Apples (which you always have to inform me is: manzanas)

--Peanuts (no nut allergies here thankfully!)

As you can tell, you basically only like fruit and snack foods. You’re not at all into ‘real’ food and NEVER eat whatever we’re eating. Much to my consternation, you won’t try all the regular ‘kid foods’ like pizza, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, fish sticks, or hamburgers. But the ONE thing you’ll eat is mac n’ cheese. Ugh. You drive us crazy worrying about how to fix you food that you’ll actually eat.

Well, those are the basics for now. At the beginning of age 2 your big personality has blossomed in a major way--outgoing, empathetic, social, oppositional, picky, and oh so talkative.

I call you my big boy and you say “Mommy, I big boy” all the time. But when I look at you lying perfectly still in your crib, asleep, I see a chubby cheeked baby boy with tiny hands and tiny feet, swallowed up in a child-sized blanket.

My sweet baby. My big boy. How do I keep you with me?

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Trying and Failing

I've wanted to blog for a long time on the unhappy topic of infertility.

It seems like such a plague for my generation.  I've known so many friends who've tried and failed and tried and failed and went through months or years of heart-aching inability to conceive and/or carry to term.

No one tells you that trying to get pregnant in your 30's is hard.  No one tells you that fertility peaks around 20-24 and it's a long, slow but ever steady decline from there.  And if anyone ever were to say these things, they would be pilloried by the media as oppressively misogynistic--trying to keep women barefoot and pregnant and out of the circle of power.

Society tells us to be independent women.  To compete with the boys.  To go to college and grad school.  And then to throw ourselves into brilliant careers because, what the heck was all that schooling for after all?

And then our hearts tell us to make families.  And our bodies try and fail us.

Eventually, most of us do have kids.  But it wasn't/isn't an easy, straightforward path.  Facebook status updates are full of success announcements, but show none of the failures.

For every update that says--there's a bun in the oven!  There are hundreds of unwritten updates that should say--Year 2 of trying, still no bun!  And for every birth announcement, sadly, there are many and more unwritten miscarriage announcements.

And sometimes the first baby is not so hard to come by, but subsequent ones may be much much harder.  I was totally caught off guard when it took 5x longer to conceive this 2nd baby than the first.  I'd never heard of second child infertility until I started googling around for answers.  You always hear that once the fertility spigot has been opened, so to speak, it just keeps comin'!  But if you google that phrase, you'll see that's far from the truth.

Just yesterday a friend told me her 4-year old son is dying to have a sibling and she's been trying forever to get him just that.  My heart totally went out to her.  I could see the conflicted look of pain in her eyes as she noted my belly bump.  A look I know all too well.  I no longer joke with people about their plans for having 2nd kids because you never know how hard or how long they've been trying...and failing.

I hate writing about this topic.  I hate bumping up against the hard realities of natural laws.  And I hate the sour, bitter taste of trying and failing.  But I feel like it's a major diservice to women not to let them know.  To not say something.  Our society already does a heckuva job covering up these hard truths.

May you never be too soon old and too late wise.

P.S. This is a great, but sadly too rare article on a personal fertility crisis from the WSJ.

Sunday, September 02, 2012


This has been another doozy of a week.  Most days I worked 12-15 hours and slept at 1 or 2 am.  But instead of catching some extra zzzzz's I just HAVE to blog about you a little bit.  It's like scratching an itch.  Sigh, the insanity of parenthood.

But I just have to commemorate 2 things you did this week that really surprised me.

First, you went up to your auntie as she was reading a magazine and told her, "I lonely," to indicate that you wanted her to play with you.  What?!  That blows my mind.

How the heck did you ever learn that concept or that word?  I've never ever heard you say the word lonely before (nor do I remember using that word in your presence).  I think maybe your dad uses that word when you cry and says stuff like "Are you sad?  Are you lonely for mommy?"

But even so, I'm so impressed that you could figure out what that abstract concept meant in one context and translate it to another one completely.

Second, you've started to ask "Why?"  Before you always asked "Who that mommy?" (and you used 'who' to indicate the pronouns 'who' and 'what').  Or "How that work mommy?"  Or "Where daddy?"  But a couple days ago you started to get on that never-ending train of asking "Why?"

Just today you asked about the man next door.
"Who that mommy?"
"Our neighbor."
"Because he lives next to us."
"Umm....he...just does."

I was hoping we could avoid the endless strings of 'why' until you were 4 or 5, but nope.  That train has left the station.  Frankly I don't mind explaining things ad absurdum, but how the heck am I supposed to explain something as complicated as 3-4 levels of causality or reasoning to a 2 year old?!

"The sky is blue."
"Why mommy?"
"Because...molecules in the air scatter blue light from the sun more than they scatter red light."

Yeah, that's not going to fly.