Sunday, December 20, 2009

"Christmas is Ruined"


This is an "old" saying in my house that dates back to the year my mom tried to change the garland on the Christmas tree (and is tongue in cheek in case that isn't clear.) I think I was in high school but I can't remember for sure, but I came home and saw the tree and was quite disturbed by this change. I joking yelled that Christmas was ruined and stomped off to my room to add dramatic flair.  Every year we find another reason to joke how Christmas was ruined that year, one year it was the present that was left after "the last gift" (which is always for KRISTY!) was opened, another year it was the wrong flavor juice in the Christmas morning punch. Anyway, this year "Christmas is ruined" because I can not make any Christmas cookies! Our oven is not going to be replaced in time. I was planning on making cookies at my Mother in Laws house but our plans to go out there today were foiled by the 8 inches of snow that fell here (up to 24 out there) last night.  Serious bummer! Christmas cookies are a tradition I have brought with me from "home" and this year it just doesn't look like it will happen. So Mom, for old times sake "Christmas is RUINED!" 

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Colin is 17 months old


That was a fast and dynamic month. Colin is now 17 months old. We will visit the doctor soon to get Colin's second dose of flu next week. I will update height and weight at that point.

Sleeping: Colin sleeps through the night nearly every night. He may cry out for a few seconds once every couple nights but hasn't required intervention in at least two weeks. This time period includes a short trip to CT to visit Erin and the boys. New location, different crib, no music (I forgot it) and NO HICCUP in sleeping. The boy is amazing. His naps are going well too. His naps are usually just over an hour but can stretch up to 2 hrs (Erin will tell you he took a three hour nap at her house, but that is highly unusual and he was actually in the car seat (in her heated garage) which is his favorite place to sleep.) He is a totally different child when it comes to sleep. We are even able to transfer a sleeping baby into the crib from the car seat without any protest. He has even attached well to his 'puppies'! He found the second puppy and decided that one needed to join him and the little one in the crib too.

Likes:
  • Airplanes and buses. When we are out and about (which happens less and less in this weather) he loves to point out the airplanes and buses he sees or hears. Often seeing or hearing them before I do making me search for what he is talking about.The boy has some pretty good ears and eyes.
  • Fire trucks and garbage trucks. Similar to the airplanes and buses but these are usually seen from our windows. Colin will get very excited and demand to be taken to the window to see the truck as soon as he hears it. He was in the tub one night when he heard a fire truck, we thought we could convince him to ignore it but that was not successful. That bath ended rather abruptly. The garbage trucks usually come by in the very early am and take about 5-10 minutes to 'eat' all the garbage from our building so Colin really enjoys watching them.
  • Swinging. This one started in the summer but I kept forgetting to mention it. The swings are Colin's favorite thing on the playground. Unfortunately we aren't able to go as often as we were last month. After a very mild and warm fall things have gotten cold rather quickly.
  • Balls. He is all boy here. He loves his balls. Sean pulled out two containers of tennis balls last week that I didn't even know we had and Colin had such a good time throwing them around and then putting them back into the container only to dump them out again. He played with that by himself for a good 20 minutes or more.
  • Monkeys. All of a sudden Colin loves monkeys, particularly his monkey pj's that Amy gave him for his birthday. EVERY night when I tell him it is "jammy time" he says "ooo ooo ahh ahh, bunkeys?" asking if he can put on his monkey pajamas! His laundry only gets done every other Monday so 12 nights in 14 he gets dissapointed.
  • The Christmas houses and tree. We put up our Christmas decorations this month. As soon as Colin goes out to the living room after waking up in the morning he requests that the tree and the houses be turned on. Literally within 2 minutes of entering the room, I don't even remember they are there that quickly at that hour.
  • Simba. This is the dog on our floor, not the Disney character. We can hear Simba (a Pomeranian) bark when he is getting ready to go for a walk, so Colin will start signing and saying "dog, dog, dog" so that we can go out and see the dog. Although when Colin actually gets out there he seems more afraid of the dog than anything. He does like to hold the leash but as little as Simba is, he can still pull Colin over.


Dislikes:
  • Blanket. Colin really hates blankets. I've tried to put them on him in the stroller or car seat now that it is so cold and he won't have any of it. Luckily we have a 'foot muff' that came with the stroller and he will tolerate that because it doesn't have to actually touch him. At night he won't allow a blanket to cover him either and since he puts himself to sleep now we can't put one on him after he is asleep.
  • The vacuum. We have actually made great strides with this this month. He will allow me to vacuum but he isn't happy about it. We actually developed a ritual that was all his doing as he taught me what would make him comfortable while the vacuum was one. I will pull it out and we say hello to it. After about 2 or 3 minutes I plug it in and put it in the far side of the living room. Without turning it on, I walk Colin over to the love seat and he will stand planted against it while I return to the vacuum and vacuum the far side of the room. When I start getting too close to him he will let me know he wants to switch sides, so I turn off the vacuum and walk him to the storage ottoman under the window. Then he stands planted against that while I finish vacuuming the LR. After I move into the dining room he will usually pick a book out and read it by the ottoman but he rarely moves beyond the halfway point of the LR until I finish and turn off the machine. Then as I'm winding up the cord he excitedly says bye bye and we put it back in the closet.  I suppose this is actually preferable to him loving the vacuum cleaner so much I can't vacuum without his help.
  • Mashed Potatoes! In addition to his dislike for protein sources, Colin also dislikes mashed potatoes. I can't possibly understand why this is. He acts like you've put sand on his tongue when you give him a spoonful of potatoes.  Sean and I are both totally perplexed by this.

New things
  • Colin has officially entered the two word stage. He regularly says "Hi mama", "Bless You" and "I you" (for I love you). He will also add words after "no" and "more" to let us know what he wants or doesn't want. This has really blasted him out of baby status, going back and re-reading his 16 month post, he seems much older this month.
  • Shapes. Colin can identify octagons, ovals, circles, and stars. I recently made him some flash cards and a 'slot' ( a box with a hole cut to fit a flash card) and he really enjoys identifying the card and putting it in the slot. This came about when he tried to put the cards in the heater vent (luckily they are too big to fit, although apparently his forks DO fit!), so I decided to re-direct this activity. We also have cards with colors on them but he hasn't clued in on that yet. He can say what color I'm signing but he can't seem to figure out what 'colors' are (I'm hopeful this is just a developmental thing and not a physical issue, I think it is early yet so I'm trying not to be psycho about it.)
  • Eating with utensils.He has been trying to a while but he just started to really get the hang of it this month. He still isn't great at it but he is very interested in trying. Typically Colin gets a fork or spoon and Sean or I get one. He still allows us to feed him without complaint, although he does like to trade spoons sometimes. You almost get the impression he thinks ours works better than his, when in reality it is the operator.
  • He started pointing out Mama, Dada and Colin this month. He doesn't actually say his own name yet but when you ask who Colin is he smiles shyly and points to himself. He will sit in his high chair and point to Sean and say Dada and then me and say Mama, over and over again. It is kind of funny. 
  • Colin also readily identifies people in pictures without being asked. Particularly, Grandpa (sounds like papa), Aunt Katie (katie), his cousin Lukas (tis) and my cousin Ashley (ashey). These are some of the pictures on the side of the refrigerator next to his high chair, he is much less interested in the albums I've put together these days. If you want to be on the side of the fridge you have to send me a picture! =) I plan on updating these photos in the new year.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Dry Skin Solution!

It's winter, that means most people have dry skin (or maybe just those of us who can't control the heat in their 85 degree apartments.) I'm telling you I found the solution! I recently started usingSafflower Oil
as a moisturizer. Straight up! I just slather a little bit on after a shower and hello hydration.  Of course being oil, it takes a little while to absorb but it is SO worth the time, and I only use it once a week it works so well. I swear it is a miracle cure, no more dry itchy skin. I've even been using it on Colin, putting a cap full in his bath water.  It has no noticeable scent and there are no questionable ingredients. I just wish I could use it more on my hands, but its a little too greasy for that.

You should know that oil is a breeding ground for bacteria so it is best to put the oil in small container and clean it out really well between re-fills. That way you don't contaminate your 'source' and have to toss the whole bottle. Also, having a bottle of cooking oil in your bathroom might confuse some people. If you try this you have to let me know how it works for you!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Waiting for a ruleing on BPA from the FDA...

The FDA should be coming out with a new ruling on BPA any day now...

Here's hoping they do the right thing, and not what the lobbyists want them to do.

This is some good news::
http://www.jsonline.com/watchdog/watchdogreports/79111742.html

Monday, December 14, 2009

The winner is...

Kristy!

I totally didn't fix this so my sister would win I swear. I even thought about doing it over again because it seemed wrong but this is how it came out so I'm going with it. Here is my screen shot showing the date and time and the random number that I got when I put my info into random.org.  I am a little late with this post, you can blame Julie I was responding to an email from her.


Congratulations to Kristy, thanks to everyone else for playing.

Third time is a charm.

I finally gave in and took Colin to get his hair cut. I've been enjoying the curls as its gotten longer but unfortunately it isn't really curly enough to stay curly after it is dry so it ends up quite frazzly in the back, particularly after he has slept on it.   I made him an appointment for this morning at a salon in town that another mom recommended, but when I arrived I was told by (and I'm not judging here simply stating a fact) a transvestite that no one there at that time cut childrens hair. The receptionist had poor English skills so I wasn't too surprised that '18 month old' wasn't understood. I really should make more of an attempt to speak Spanish but the few times I've tried they assume I'm fluent and I'm not. So I left, and I wasn't that upset, I don't think we were their typical clientele. I drove down the street and saw a few more salons but wasn't really sure if I wanted to just walk into a place with a child who isn't good at haircuts without any recommendation or research. Then I saw Josephine's and I remembered reading a lot of recommendations for it on a local list serve. So we went in. Colin did really well. He started to get upset and cry when she put the apron on him because he didn't like it on his neck. However, she walked away and came back with a lollipop and he was sold! (I wish I had thought of this because I have organic HFCS free ones here at the house but I didn't so he ate a traditional lollipop and loved every minute of it.)  Once again there was a bit of a language barrier, she asked me if I wanted it medium or large and I had NO idea what that meant, so I said ' a trim'. I did manage to convey that I did NOT want her to use the buzzer on his neck, things were going well and I didn't want to ruin it. It is shorter than I would prefer but I'm not going to get picky, its cut WELL and I won't have to go back for awhile so I'm happy.  No more curls, but it wasn't really working curly anyway.  Here are some pictures.


Someone is starting to look more like his daddy!

I was really nervous that lollipop was going to get everywhere, but it was nothing compared to the cream cheese from the bagel he willingly traded it for.   In case you forgot, this is what he looked like on Friday. It was messy, but it was pretty cute!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Indoor adventures.

Today it was exceptionally cold, with a 'real feel' temperature close to 10 degrees (very cold for this area). So there was no chance of us venturing out into the cold unnecessarily. Additionally there is a nasty virus being passed between the kids in the neighborhood so I haven't wanted to take Colin to any of our usual kid friendly haunts. If he doesn't come down with it this weekend we are probably in the clear.
Here are some pictures of my attempt to jump through hoops today to keep Colin entertained in between his asking to watch 'time' (baby signing time, or sometimes any TV program) and asking to go bye bye.

The Giraffe tent makes an appearance in our living room!



We had a picnic lunch inside the tent. Although he was a bit distracted and didn't exactly eat well. We also put all the living room pillows inside and spent close to an hour and a half just reading books (not shown). His nap was on the short side so I wasn't surprised that he was willing to relax for a bit.


Later in the afternoon, we set up a tether ball in his bedroom doorway.



As you can see this was a huge hit.


He had fun making it arc in the hallway.  Looks like we survived the day!

The Gift of Cute.

Merry Christmas blog readers, I'm giving one lucky reader a gift!  I'm hosting my first give-away!!  I recently ordered some Christmas presents on etsy.com from Rain Cloud Studio, they arrived this week and I am so excited to give them to their intended recipients (who may or may not read the blog, I'm not sure,  I might be giving a little away but I'm not too concerned.) When I ordered she was having a promotion to buy three get one free so I got one for myself too (that promotion is still running by the way). This one:
I've worn it every day since I got it. Even Colin likes it, although he seems to think its a lion (its close!) These pendants are seriously cute! I wish she had bigger prints I would totally hang them in Colin's room!!  In order to spread the word about her studio, she has agreed to give a pendant away to one of my lucky readers! All you need to do is visit her page and pick out which pendant is your favorite. Leave me a comment telling me which one you like and I'll choose a commenter  based on a random number generator. If you want a extra chance, tell your friends (using whatever social media form you use, blogger, twitter, facebook) about this giveaway and leave me a comment with a link telling me what you did.
Good Luck! The winner will be chosen on Monday at 8:00pm. Get your comments in before then. (If your an anonymous commenter don't forget to leave your name and e-mail.) 

You've probably got time to get some last minute gifts of your own, so get your pendants while she is still running the sale and buy three get one free promotion!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Blast from the past



This is one of my favorite songs that I preformed with my high school select choir. This is not the group I performed with (we didn't hold our music or use a cd player! for shame!) but just a random video I found.  This song really requires a strong male section so I picked the version based on that. (However former CHSSC members be warned, they kind of butcher the last note.)
 Enjoy

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A word (or 289) on why I dont use Facebook.

I have nothing against social media sights, I used to use MySpace and enjoyed it. The reason I can not create a Facebook page is because I am not a responsible internet user, in fact some might say I have an internet addiction (although that is probably an exaggeration husband!) Couple that with the fact that I have more work to do than I have free time and I can't 'afford' to have a Facebook account. I know myself well enough to know I would spend hours sucked into it, neglecting my thesis, husband, child, house etc.

When the time comes that I don't have to sit at my computer for four and a half hours a day (while Colin sleeps) working on my PhD dissertation I will happily get an account (especially since I should theoretically finish before Sean does so I'll have to occupy my time somehow since he will be working.)

So why do I even blog? Doesn't that take time? Yes, yes it does, but I NEED it. Since I 'stay at home' blogging keeps me sane, and feeling connected and I believe makes me a better parent (and as you’ve probably noticed, I don’t proofread that well so it doesn’t really take that much time.) And Twitter? Why is that okay? Eh! As you saw from the comments, no one I 'know' uses twitter I follow a few people, but generally don't care that much so I rarely check what people are saying. AND (and this is a big one) there are no giant backlogs of pictures and comments and conversations to search endlessly. These may be the justifications of an addict but it is what it is. I draw the line at facebook.


New Feature- Twitter

I've had a twitter account for a while now, but I don't really use it much. Recently after seeing its use in other places I thought I would start posting (sorry tweeting!) there more frequently. Sometimes I have a brief thought that isn't really blog post length, so I've started posting those thoughts on twitter. Since none of you know I have a twitter account I made it so you can read those posts (oops tweets) now in my twitter side bar. Of course, there is the chance that no one really cares about these random thoughts, but no one said you have to read them. I'm guessing my mother will enjoy this new development, and maybe Elaine since she is almost always my first comment I get the impression she checks in frequently! Technically, I should now be able to 'tweet' from my phone but I haven't worked that out yet...

Hope you enjoy the new feature.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Thanksgiving (and beyond) Photos

Thanksgiving project.

The final result

My little Indian boy is ready for dinner!

Kristeen and Carter came to visit.
Colin likes his new buddy!

Colin and Lukas playing a familiar game.

We took Colin to see the Lights on the Lake. Since we were going less than 2 miles an hour he was allowed to get out of his car seat.

Colin pulled off a tricky manuever and got into Sean's lap while he was pretending to climb into the back seat. He did enjoy the lights, but since it was getting late he was mostly asleep by the time we finished the trail.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

November Video.

I didn't get this video up during the month of November but it was recorded in November so it still counts! I have the LCD screen flipped around so he can see it and watch himself, which is why he is so interested in looking at the camera. Also about a third of the way into it Sadie decided to attack the strap so I almost dropped the camera.
Enjoy!

Colins Animal Sounds from Rebecca Berry on Vimeo.