Saturday, December 4, 2010

First firsts...

Picture of Kate at 1am looking SO sleepy!
Abby at Ballet class, she is pretty much the best one in the whole class... except when she gets distracted and licks the bar, I know it's super gross!
(For some reason my copy and paste functions are not working, so forgive the strange order.)

Before Peter was born I started keeping a journal. A Peter journal, not sure what I wrote about while I was pregnant, but the other day I looked at it and realized I wrote 37 pages before the kid was even born. I didn't read it but it if I had to guess, I would think I wrote something like, "drank blue gatorade, then pepto bismol, then puked purple." That's what I remeber. The front page has a list of dates of things he did, and what he weighed... I wrote the first page in Kate's journal last week. It seems very unlikely I will get to page 37 anytime soon.

Maybe it's wrong, but the first firsts, just feel more exciting. Peter lost his first tooth last week. I looked at it and had these thoughts, in this order:

1."I finally understand why David's Mother saved one of these."
2. "This is the first tooth he ever bit me with."
3. "He really should be brushing better."

...and I felt a little sad.
Sometimes parenthood feels like some crazy race I entered without really knowing anything about the length or terrain of the course. There are moments when I feel really good about my pace and progress, then bam, I am right back at the starting line! Back to crying it out, back to first bites, and diaper rash, all the while I am still saying, "please don't lick that." The truth is I think it's worth it. There are some pretty amazing moments, and I will just keep trying to hold onto the beautiful moments, and keep moving.
One thing I wrote in that first journal was this, "I am a mother now, a title that describes a role that consumes one's whole soul."

Monday, November 15, 2010

Having issues, please advise

Peter got a bike for his birthday, so naturally Abby HAS to have one for Christmas. No problem, right? So I start shopping for girl bikes and suddenly the feminist in me, the one that has been dormant for nearly a decade now, the one that took a nap while Abby and I watched The Little Mermaid this morning, was fiercely awoken after five minutes of girl bike shopping!

I remember the moment I learned to ride a bike. I remember my Dad holding the back of that sweet sweet sparkly red banana seat, I remember the moment he let go, and it was just me. It felt like freedom, my first taste of freedom. The driveway was stretched out in front of me for miles, and it was just me and my bike. Freedom, it felt like freedom.

Here's the issue; every bike looks like either Barbie or every Disney princess threw up all over it. And if that were not enough they come with doll seats in the back. Now don't get me wrong I love babies, and dolls, I really do. I even like Disney princesses, and how consistently they achieve the woman's ultimate success; marrying well, but a bike is not about glancing back to make sure your baby isn't caught in the spokes of your new found freedom.

So the search continues... Does anyone know where I can find a bike the feminist in me won't have the urge to run over with my car, when it's parked illegally in the driveway ?

P.S. Please forgive me if your daughter has a Disney princess bike with a baby seat in back.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

star wars cont...

Star Wars Mania

We had a Star Wars birthday Party for Peter. After going through 5 trials the kids came before the counsel: David, David's Parents, My Brother-in law (who happens to be a teacher at a very prominent local high school, and a very good Darth Vader) and myself. After being approved by the counsel they received Jedi cloaks (not capes)! Then we had a series of other games, followed by cupcakes and Yoda sodas. FYI: thoose are light sabers on the cupcakes, and they are red NOT pink. Then we played a video of thier jedi moves. Stay tuned for amazing jedi video footage.
And my favorite trick of the afternoon, the floating light saber.
I think this might be a jedi mind trick?
The very powerful cousin Davis.
Some Jedi's struggled with the asteroid race...

Abby, found a better way.

And these were the school birthday cupcakes.

Happy Birthday Peter! I love this kid, and it still gets me every time he blows me a kiss from the school bus. I love him so much I watched 5 of the 6 Star Wars movies in preparation for this birthday party. We take birthday parties very seriously, at least I do, and David plays along :) Special thanks to the Jedi Counsel for all their help! You were amazing!

May the Force be with you!

Sunday, October 31, 2010


Poor Abby fell down the stairs right before she put on her costume, and knocked "E" loose. I know Halloween contributes to cavities, but I never expected a child to loose a tooth on Halloween from falling down the stairs. Her swollen lip made her look more fish like, so it all worked out.

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Baby love

Miss Kate is as amiable as can be. I have been trying to take in every smile, put them away in my heart for when I might need them later. Abby and I may be taking advantage of her... But, look at this face!
She is practically begging me to dress her up like a giant piece of fruit! And when I do she smiles her amazing little baby smile, that says; "thank you dear Mother, please put more bows in my hair, or leave me in this wet diaper if we are late getting to the bus stop. I don't really mind:)"
To Abby this sweet smile says; "please file my fingernails, and leave dolls in my swing, go ahead and hold me or sing me a song, or lick my face if you feel like it."

This time around this special baby love seems a little more fragile. I have a better idea of how quickly it turns to independence. I value independence, really I do. But, I also value this short window of ambivalence that comes before she starts saying things like;
"Stripes are boring."
"I don't like collars."
"Can I please have shoes with flashing lights in them."

Until that day... I am enjoying this moment.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Ferry Love

This weekend we took a ride on the only remaining Ferry across the Potomac. I have a special love for river boat ferries. I love, love, love them, like can't post the pictures of me on them because I look ridiculously happy, really ridiculous. It was beautiful, and the Potomac was surprisingly clean. We picked apples at a farm on the other side of the river, and I was happy! We also got some amazing pumpkins, heirloom and roma tomato, and various other loveliness.

Then I woke up on Monday morning and it was raining, and it finally felt like fall, perfect canning weather. I made Tomato sauce, applesauce, and cinnamon apples. There is a sweet Ball recipe that calls for red hot candies, and lots of ginger, every year I look at it, and think about trying it, this year I did, it makes for some very tasty spicy apples (that is why some of then look reddish.
Also, Abby started her first ballet class, she is a fan

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Blessing Weekend

A few weekends ago baby Kate was blessed. We had lots of family members come visit; my parents, David's parents, Aunt Vicki from Boston, the Virginia cousins, Uncle Mike from Ohio, and our friends the "Bawingas." Unfortunately, I didn't get many pictures, and the ones I did get are missing on my computer.

We had a great time, and loved having so many family members around.

I did get some pictures with my parents as we were seeing the sights. I found this picture to be a little creepy.

My Mom took this picture at Arlington. As we were walking away from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, after watching the changing of the guard, Peter ran up to some people coming towards us. With a giant smile on his face, he said to them, with much exuberance:
"Hurry up, there's a dead guy up there."
I was a few feet back and did not hear what he said, but I saw the looks on their faces.

A couple days later we went to Mount Vernon. On the way in we were told there were some baby pigs. After we went through the house, my mom said, "I wonder where the pigs are?"
Abby replied, despondently, "they are probably dead too!"

I had to step back so she wouldn't see me laughing, I really had not anticipated that days of looking at Monuments to dead presidents, rows of headstones, and empty houses would be such a bummer for a little girl.

Here is Kate with Grandma Bassett and my new favorite John Robshaw pillow. I have been very influenced by the neighborhood lately, I am digging John Robshaw, shopping for melon pops, nori, sugar cane, and dragon fruit at Lotte, fighting impulses to spray paint things gold and watching Bollywood movies. Meanwhile Peter is shouting, "Mom, I do not like spicy." And I am all, " if you think this is spicy just wait until your new friends Sawheb or Sulleyman invite you over for dinner."

Friday, September 24, 2010

Re-read realizations

I have been re-reading my own blog (helps with the maternal memory loss) and I have had a few realizations:

1. I really should get that red APA guide book back out and review some rules. Where does that period go when you use parenthesis?

2. That disparaging blog post I wrote about Cookie magazine correlated with the magazines demise. I really want to say I am sorry, come back we can still be friends, just please stop sending me Allure magazine to fulfill the rest of my subscription. Allure doesn't know me AT ALL, and frankly I am a little embarrassed to have it in my stacks!

3. I am dying to;
a. take a tractor ride at Belltown hill orchard, pick loads of apples, and can applesauce
on a cool Fall afternoon.
b. Ride a ferry.
c. See leaves change to bright beautiful colors, not just shrivel up and fall off :(
d. Take a swim in Walden pond.
e. Attend the best book club ever.
Sorry I left you New England, I miss you dearly. I would come back, but David says, No.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Girls just wanna have fun

With Peter off to school and David off to work we have been having a lot of girl time. Abby, Kate, and I have very similar interests, we all enjoy watching Project runway, madame Alexander dolls, shopping, and napping.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Hangin' at the Bus Stop

I am getting some AMAZING parental advise at the bus stop lately. I am beginning to see why people just drive their kids to school.

On day 2 Kate sneezed at the bus stop, wrong move. A Russian woman says to me,
"Oh no (shakes head, and expresses much worry that the baby has some discharge from her nose)... In my Country is tradition to put few drops, how you say...Mother's milk in baby's nose...few drops, just right in nose...has healing properties!"

I replied with raised eyebrows, "Wow, that's very interesting." What I was thinking was, "here's the thing lady, I have been sucking snot out of peoples noses for the better part of a decade. I have the Graco Snot Sucker 3000 at home and a giant bottle of normal saline, and nothing gives me more pleasure than strapping my baby down, putting one of each in each nare and taking care of that little runny nose. I have really got this, thanks."

In addition to my new Russian friend, I also have a new "friend", recently returned from her summer vacation to her home country of Singapore. I am pretty sure my Mother sent her to look out for my children. Whenever the temperature dips below 80 degrees, and I mean dips to 78 degrees, she strikes.
"don't you have socks for your baby?"
"you really should get going she must be freezing."
"doesn't he need a jacket."
"should she be wearing shorts."

Meanwhile she is wearing the world's shortest skirt and flip flops, and Abby and I are sweating from our vigorous 10 minute walk to the bus stop.

And while I am ranting I might mention I recently got rear-ended by a taxi cab 200 feet from the rental car return center on my way home from my Grandmother's funeral.

Here are some pictures of some recent lunches for Peter, and yes, he really is eating things he hasn't eaten before (I volunteered for lunch one day, just to check.) The rocket ship one was actually made by David while I was away.

More pleasant posts to come...really

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

First Day...

About this time last year I was sure that I was not going to be one of thoose Mothers who are sobbing at the bus stop. I was going to throw some kind of party, and go get a pedicure. Then I actually got there, and as Peter hugged Abby and told her that he really loved her and was going to miss her, I totally lost it. I was the only Mother sobbing on the corner, and all the other Mothers were assuring me it was going to be o.k.
David even came with us, see there really is some normal after residency :)

Then it was Abby's turn to go to preschool. She asked if I was going to cry again.

Peter is such an awesome kid! He made 4 new friends before the bus even arrived. He has a fierce independent streak, and only gets scared in the middle of the night. He recently told me he was going to be a Firefighter, a Palentologist, and a metro driver. That is in addition to being a Jet pilot, but he already does that job.
This is Peter's first day lunch. I recently discovered charachter bento for kids, and I think it is super fun. We just got a book called "YUM YUM Bento." This is my first attempt at it, those are octopus hot dogs, I know they look a little creepy, but what octopus doesn't?

So far I am thinking the people in charge of elementary schools are a little bit ridiculous. There are so many rules and procedures, and pick-up times, and ... And make sure the snack is labeled "snack" in it's own bag with 2 napkins, not 3 napkins, or 1 napkin, 2 napkins, and the snack can't have peanuts, and bring a shirt with 6 buttons, and don't wear crocs on Tuesdays, and, "no I'm sorry that is not your son's birth certificate, that is a certificate of live birth" it is on white paper and real birth certificates are on colored paper, "yes, I see it has a seal and signature, but it is not a birth certificate," and this won't do where it says MMRV in the second varcillella spot, " ("the V in MMRV stands for varicella"), "well I can't make that leap."
Peter's Teacher is from Connecticut, she is lovely, and so far seems totally reasonable, unlike certain other members of the establishment.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Welcome Friends

The decor for the guest room was inspired by my favorite movie. It's quirky, whimsical, and very french. If we were not renting I would put up some awesome vintage wallpaper, but alas... Our goal was to make the room comfortable, without being Kato Kaelin comfortable.

The pictures are from the movie, and in the movie they are in big gold frames. I do not have a big gold frame budget so when my sister said, "just make frames" I heard my Mother's voice in my head say, "yeah, I can do that."

I bought cheapo Ikea frames (actually sent David to buy Ikea frames, thank you) then bought molding, mitered it, stapled it, glued it to the Ikea frame using construction adhesive for wood, then primed, and painted them. "Fowl with Pearls" is my favorite, I have come to like her so much I might even put her in the living room if David would let me. I can't help but laugh ever time I see her.
The bedside table/chair was inspired by an amazing blog I love! I stained mine walnut, and have not yet but the finish on.
My Sister-in-law Vicki hates birds, ALL birds. I hope "Fowl with Pearls" does not keep her away. Vicki, if you come visit we promise to have Melon popsicles :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Baby Kate

Kate's corner.

Kate is pretty much adorable, and we really love her :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Kindergarten here we come

This morning I asked Peter to get dressed. This is how he came down, except the shirt was on backwards and inside out, and I wondered is this boy really ready to go to Kindergarten? I guess if you had to wait for boys to learn to dress themselves (well) they would be... let's just say much, much older.

Peter's new favorite food is "worms" a.k.a caramelized onions.