Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Dooce Called This One

The current word is that the doctor's are treating Britney for PPD.

Ahhhhh, Spring

This is my favorite time of the year. Our cherry trees have started blooming out front, the jonquils are up and brightly yellow and the narcissus are getting ready to start strut their stuff.

But that's not why I really like spring. The reason I really like spring, now that I'm a homeowner, is because everything is all "plan" right now and no "failure." I've designed the garden, ordered the seeds, and just planted the onions. The garden is all barren, tilled and full of potential. The weather is cool and there are no weeds. That's the part of gardening that just beats me to the ground. Weeds make me think that I'm a failure and reminds me that my garden will never live up to the potential I see in it at the beginning of March.

And yes, that is as depressing as it sounds come the hot, humid days of the end of July when I hate even looking at my garden. I forget that each year I get a little better at stopping the weeds from growing. Last year, the much helped. This year, we are planting everything a little closer together interspersing the basil and cilantro with the peppers and eggplant, the parsley with the peas (followed by the bok choi) so that the weeds just won't have a place to grow.

And can I tell you about the excitement, the sheer thrill, I had this weekend when we bought a new 10" tilling fork!? Oh my WORD! I could not stop talking about it!!! Dave tilled and then went through the beds with the fork and we were getting waaaaay down to the clay! Even now, that sentence makes my breath quicken with excitement. Our gardening philosophy comes from the Vegetable Gardener's Bible where the point is deep cultivation and wide plant beds. The author also "cheats" and tells you how long seeds last, so I can overbuy seeds this year and save them for the next 1-3 years.

So spring is all plan and potential right now. And I love it. Summer, I know, is show and tell-me-how-I-didn't-do-it-as-well-as-I-thought-I-was-going-to. But we're in spring now. And I'm pathetically optimistic on how THIS YEAR, it's all going to be a lot better.

Speaking of pathetic optimism, things are going better with the Big Boy Bed. We're sticking to our nighttime routine even when things get a little Blair Witch Project. I'm not even going to explain that right now, but let's just say there were 5 minutes of crying last night and when I went back to his room Conor was standing in the corner by his door making me look very much like the Blair Witch. And last night was one of the best nights in a week!! (The sad part is my cheering that at least he hadn't opened the door and come out into the hall! Good job, Conor!!)

We also did some math (!) and figured out that one of the reasons bedtime has sucked recently is that we're trying to put him down before he's ready: he doesn't need 12 hours of sleep per night any more, especially with his 2 hour nap at school. We really don't want to keep him up later, so we're going to start getting him up a little earlier for school. We'll see how that goes.

So there you go. Can I once again brag about my amazing home office with its sunny yellow walls covered in amazing sun from my gorgeous windows and French doors and the amazing view of my garden pure of weeds? Well, apparently, yes I can.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Well Said, Craig

Take 12 minutes and 30 seconds and look at this monologue from Craig Ferguson on what is going on with Britney.

It's really poignant. And funny!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Another Britney Perspective

Dooce suggests that Britney is in the midst of some bad postpartun depression and she is self-medicating and is about to lose it. If you don't know how devastating ppd is, or even just regular "d", check out this. Here's another perspective which is almost as articulate as Dooce's.

Another, more light-hearted blog, up later.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

And Now She's Back.....

Britney was driven back to rehab by her mother.

Lordy, girl.

I have to say I'm relieved because I think the prize behind Door #2 is closer to Anna Nicole than Drew Barrymore.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

My Big Fat Freaky Ass Feet

So I went to the podiatrist today.

I went because I'm not pregnant and my left foot has been hurting when I walk. Although to the normal population those two facts have no connection, here in the world of gnarly feet, they do.

I have ugly feet. Butt Ugly Feet. My feet are BUF. I have a humongous bunion on my right foot complete with a hammer toe (which sounds much better when you call it Hammer Toe! a la MC Hammer). I have a smaller bunion on my left foot, but it has been the one hurting recently. It has been hurting so much that I've worried about being able to walk from my car to my office without limping.

I know that the "cure" for bunions is surgery. One of my colleagues has had such a thing last spring and was quickly up and at 'em within days. So I figured since I am not pregnant (this week), I might was well run on over to the doctor's office and get the word on fixin' my tootsies. The scoop is either that I do it now when I'm not pregnant or, the best case scenario, I do it a year from now 3 or 4 months after I've given birth. It just worries me that if my feet get worse, I may have a hard time getting around if I am happily and luckily pg again.

Well, that's the scenario for normal ugly footed people.

I am the abnormal ugly footed person. The unusual case. The rare ugly toe, as it were.

Whereas most bunions come from a problem with the first toe knuckle, my problem comes back in the foot---it's a "deformity" in the middle of my foot at the joint so that basically my big toe is unstable and can wiggle around and get into trouble. Here's an article.

So, instead of getting the regular surgery where you're back to weightbearing in a walking cast in 24 hours or so, this is a specialized surgery that requires no weightbearing at all for 6 weeks! The good news is that if I stay off the foot for 6 weeks after surgery and don't smoke (?!), then there's about a 95% chance that the surgery will work. Otherwise, there is a strong probability that the "bones won't fuse" and I'll go back to having the same problem.

So, just to point this out, having this surgery with a newborn is sort of OUT OF THE QUESTION. And because this is somewhat more complicated than other surgery there is a potential for infection (low, but above 0%) which could mean up to 5 weeks of IV antibiotics which puts having the surgery before I get pregnant is out of the quesiton, too!

And in case you were wondering how rare this is: my doc has done "2000" of the regular bunion surgeries and only 20 of these. (I question the accuracy of 2000, but do believe "a lot" is appropriate)

I really don't mind walking around with ugly feet. That's fine. I can wait for years until I have the surgery done based on my acceptance of how butt ugly my feet are. But I am concerned that I'm getting more pain in just regular day-to-day activities. Nonethelss, no surgery for me.

I will, however, be getting orthotic inserts. They are "big" and will probably only fit in my sneakers and "dress flats" which would be nice if I owned any. They won't help the bunion but should take the pain away with the feet. Whoopee!

So there. Now you know more than you ever wanted to know about my feet. And I have learned that truly, my feet are exceptionally ugly.


She's checked back OUT of rehab. I do not know her! I understand that. But bad, bad things are going to happen to her if she doesn't get it together soon! How messed up must she be really if she can't stay sober for 1 day!

And how much and what was she doing while she was pregnant?

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

To No One's Surprise, but Everyone's Relief

Britney Spears has entered rehab. I'm thinking that years from now, if she stays on the wagon, this weekend is going to be when she knows she hit rock bottom.

Well, we can all breathe a sigh of relief now and get back to work.

Random Thoughts

I have no idea why Sergio, our betta, is still alive. He barely moves and hangs in very unusual positions in the water. Yet, he lives. We're happy to keep him around as long as he wants to hang with us. I'm not looking forward to the Big Flush.

Britney Spears is losing it/has lost it. It's pathetic that I think about this sort of thing, but I do. A lot.

Conor does well with just giving him two choices (see Baby No). Nonetheless, we still have issues with Do you want Milk or Juice? And going through the "Milk! NO! Juice! NO!" routine. We've made some breakthroughs on the getting dressed routine. Let's just say this: if you see two old haggard parents carrying a naked child in a coat and hat to daycare, you'll know he called our bluff. So far, he can't stand the thought of leaving the house naked and when we just stop trying to "make him" get dressed he wants to get dressed.

I'm not pregnant this month. I'm not upset, but I'm starting to get frustrated now.

I actually had a brillant post that I forced myself to remember before I fell to sleep last night and now, of course, I can't remember it, but I felt compelled to post something anyway.

I'm sure it will return to me as soon as I leave the computer. Lately, that has been when most of my brillant thoughts occur.....

Monday, February 19, 2007

Laying Down The Law

Actually, that sounds a lot more dramatic than it is. In actuality, we are just creating some "rules" around the house to help promote some toddler boundaries....and they are WORKING!!!


The first one happened Thursday night during an unhappy back-to-being-a-newborn boobfest after Conor crawled into bed with us. YES, I'm still nursing and YES, most of the time, it's great. But when I'm turning into a middle of the night pacifier, I'm a not a likin' it so much.

So on Friday morning, when we all woke up, and Conor said "NURSIE!" in just about that tone of voice, I said "Yes, Conor can nursie because the sun has come up! Conor can nurse all he wants when the sun comes up!" Friday night, I reminded him of the rule, which I did not have to enforce due to a joyous sleeping through the night in his own bed.

Then, Saturday morning, I was trying to get him off the boob and then HE pointed out that the sun was up and that he could nursie all he wanted. Flabbergasted, I agreed.

Saturday night, he crawled into bed with us again. And he did not even TRY to nursie. WOOHOO!!!!!!! Last night, he did try, but after about a minute of protestation to my pointing out that the sun wasn't up, he stopped and went to sleep. WOOOHOOOHOOO again!!!

I love rules!!

So during a horrible nap-that-wasn't on Saturday, I made another one. I told Conor he had to stay in bed until the Big Hand on his clock got to 12. (I figured one more hour would be enough and it was 2:00 during the demonstration, so well, what the hell) I demonstrated several times on the clock how the big hand would move and when it reached 12, he could get out of bed.

It worked. He was quiet and was staying in his bed. And then my family arrived, and being that they are like I, there was loud talking and much laughter. About 2:45 I heard, "Mommy! I want to get up! Mommy! I want to get up now!!!"

For good behavior, I released him from prison/nap a little early. But I was so impressed with him for staying in his bed and in his room when he could hear the party starting outside.

What a good little boy he is.

Most of the time.......

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Even If They Are Lying....

When other mothers/friends say "You know your son is above-average cute, right?", I humbly demure. Nonetheless, it takes me aback and makes me proud.

The real truth is that the child likes to have his picture taken. I hope he never loses that lack of self-consciousness and begin to doubt how cute he is.

And, to no one's surprise, at 2:30 last morning I heard the pitter patter of little pajama'd feet across the floor and open my eyes to a smiling imp by my bed. I wondered how on earth Michael J. Fox got in my house.....

Of course not! It was my snickerdoodle in bear footie pajamas. So, I just reached over and pulled him in. Two snuggles later and we're all asleep. It may bother me later, but right now, we're just fine with that.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Baby No

First, the cute stuff:

Mommy: Conor did you have any dreams last night?

Conor: I had dreams last night.

Mommy: What did you dream about?

Conor: Grandaddy.

Daddy: What was Grandaddy doing?

Conor: He was making a mess. And Daddy, too.

(Silent laughs exchanged by Mommy and Daddy over the breakfast table)

Well, that's the cute stuff. So HOLD ON TO IT because there is not much more of that left. Conor has been kidnapped by aliens and replaced with an astonishing look alike known as Baby No. Baby No says NO! to everything.

Do you want milk?
Do you want juice?
No! Milk!
Do you want milk?
Do you want juice?
No! Milk!

Let me just add right here how much fun THAT conversation is. And you can switch Milk/Juice for this shirt/that shirt, this pull-up/that pull-up, socks, shoes, pee-pee on the potty what the FUCK ever and the response you will hear is NO!

My favorite question, though, is:

Are you Baby No?

That last one makes us laugh for our clever conundrum we fancy putting him in, but of course, Baby No is not Baby Know and therefore cannot be amused out of his constant state of No.

And it's not just saying No. It's being No. We cannot get the child dressed in the morning any more without a great deal of wrestling and restraint. And when I say "restraint" I do not mean our mature ability to control our emotions. I mean somebody holding his wriggling body while the other wrestles on his jeans.

I walked in this morning to him naked and jumping up and down, but not so much in the happy song way and more in the I HATE YOU I'M NOT GETTING DRESSED WAY. I'm telling you, it's just not a happy place for any of us to be in.

I know this is the Terrible Two's (which is really the Terrible Two-and-a-halfs), so it's just a stage.

But this stage sucks. Any suggestions? Other than hiring a babysitter and leaving for the next 6 months?

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Shaking it Up A Bit

Last year, we made an extensive To Do list of projects around the house. I can now say that as of last weekend one of them, making our living room look grown up instead of grad student, is about done. We finally bought the rug that brings everything together in the room. And even better, this 8x11" rug was only $238 from Lowes. Bwhahahahahahahahahah! I love that story! We've been looking at rugs for years and have found nothing less than $800 and most well over $1100. And this is a NICE rug for less than $250! Bwhahahahahahahahahah! Indeed, most of Lowes rugs are Cheap A$$. Who knew? We thinking of getting another one for the family room, which is this year's list of things to do.

The last thing we have to get are bookshelf speakers to take Dave and my electronic purchases up from the 70's and 80's respectively. Otherwise, with the two new chairs, the leather coffee table/ottaman, the new doors on the built-ins and the rug, we're calling the living room done!

Of course, once you change one thing, you open up the world for all the other changes you want to make, like switching closets around, moving bedroom furniture and buying your 2 1/2 year old son A NEW BED!!!!!! (I feel like Bob Barker right now).

Yes! We've moved to the Big Boy Bed in our household. What the HELL were we thinking???? The first night was great; Conor asked to get into bed and slept the whole night. The next night was a little bit more of a struggle; we had to sit in the room with him a little longer to help him go to sleep. The last two nights have been downright awful. There is the scurrying of little feet around the house when he darn well ought to be in bed. There is the screaming for one more toy--usually Thomas the Train or one of his compatriots--to put under his covers.

I know (hope!) it's just a transitional phase as he gets used to having more freedom and we figure out how to enforce the night time rules with methods that do not involve a) wrestling one's opponent and pinning him to the mat/bed or b) a variety of phyiscal restraints, the favorite one in my imagination involving a leash that allows some roaming but will pull him back to the bed should he get too far.

Mentally, I know he's just testing the new limits. Emotionally, I'm ready to bring the crib back and put him in it until he is 15.

Oh, and we are on Death Watch 2007 for Sergio the fish. He's taken to new positions of floating and swimming I've never seen before. For a while, he has been resting in his grass instead of swimming. Just sort of hanging out without expending any effort. Now he's taken to lying on the bottom of the first bowl or hanging vertically at the top of the water with his mouth right at water/air line. I know he's old for a Betta--3 years makes him above average in fish years. But still we'd hope for him to hang around a bit longer. The vertical stance, though. It's very easy to see him move one fin the wrong way, and he's belly up.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Death and, then, Life

I couldn't stop crying over this article in the NY Times this morning. A few months ago, the Times featured an article about children sold into slavery in poor countries by their parents. Their new owners would then work the children for ungodly hours and then beat them severely when the children didn't work. (I'm talking children 6 years old here).

While I read the article and thought "Why won't they let me adopt one of these children now?", a couple in Missouri read the story and decided to buy these children out of slavery and put them in an orphanage.

You see, this couple lost their son a few years ago to an undetected heart ailment. They decided to honor their son's life by saving the lives of as many other children as they could. So, they are doing what they can where they can to help other children live and have better lives.

That's pretty effing amazing.

Here is a link to the couple's charity.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Jump Up and Down

For the last year or so, Conor's daycare has been singing this song in which they pick a child's name and sing to him/her to jump up and down. It is absoluetly adorable. I was going to the gym (conveniently located by Conor's daycare) and saw one of the little girls jumping up and down as hard as she could as the teacher sang to her. We've seen our neighbors, whose daughter is in the same daycare, jumping up and down with their daughter in the front yard. We've done it ourselves on multiple occassions.

So I've put it on video. Three times. For various reasons, each video has its strengths and weakness. But put together, you can see that we have complete control over our son, at least in terms of singing this song goes.

Video #1: Conor in his sock monkey pajamas and matching robe.

Video #2: Conor with a new Duck call jumping up and down. Patches wanted to help.

Video #3: Sideways Conor Jumping Up and Down. Cutest one, but you have to turn your head.

BTW, at the end of them, what he is saying is "I want to see!"

Snow Day

When we woke up at 5 this morning, the radio said all the schools were cancelled and there wasn't a flake of snow to be had. By 6 when we finally "officially" got out of bed, it was snowing really hard and I was looking forward to sharing with Conor is first snow storm. It's 2:00 now, though, and pretty much everything is melting.

I saw that by about 8:45 the snow was switching to sleet, so I bundled up Conor and took him outside so he could play in the snow for the first time. Honestly, he was a bit afraid of it, so I ended up making our two tiny snowmen ourselves. Officially, of course, one is a baby snowman and one is Conor's Big Boy snowman. Both are pretty much snowblobs right now, though, not helped in the least by Patches poking them over with his nose out of pure jealousy. (WHY THE ATTENTION TO INANIMATE BALLS OF SNOW WHEN THERE'S A DOG RIGHT HERE WITH A FRISBEE????) It makes sense.

I have to honestly say I don't know how SAHM's do it. I didn't get the breakfast dishes cleaned until after lunch and nap started. And I really have a lot more understanding of how one could get into a toddler food rut if one was cooking all the meals oneself. First, I don't have as big of an imagination as the daycare with its 6 week rototating no-meals-repeated menu. Second, wouldn't you know, we ran out of milk and bread. I don't know about where you live, but down in the south, there's always a run on milk and bread when there is bad whether. I don't really understand why. It's rarely been so bad around here that you couldn't get to the grocery store on the second day of the storm. Do people really think they are going to starve without a fresh supply of milk and bread?? Nonetheless, if you really have to get milk and bread on the night before a winter storm, you do it discretely or risk being perceived as alarmistly uncool. Hence I sent Dave to get our supplies late last night. (His report: the bread aisle was picked clean, but there was plenty of organic milk)

So here we are. This morning before Dave left for work, he asked Conor what the snowmen we built were going to do tonight. "Walk down the street and go to the park," Conor replied as if it were obvious. Indeed it is. Although today, we might have to say they went to the park while he was taking his nap.