One More Mommy

Thoughts of a mom and her husband, son, daughter, pets, friends, job (or lack thereof), house, family, trying to be more ecologically aware...

Tuesday, February 28, 2006


Last week was Luke's first full week at daycare - sort of. Monday was a holiday at the center and my mom watched him, and then he was only there for half a day on Friday, so if a full week is 3 and a half days, he was there for a full week.

So, really, this is his first full week at daycare. I like our daycare, I do. Luke really likes one of the teachers and is getting to know the other one, who's only been there for a couple of weeks. He's generally happy when I go to pick him up.

The biggest problem with daycare, though? Luke doesn't sleep well there. At home, he'll put in a two hour nap. Maybe in addition to a one hour morning nap. At daycare, he's having a really good day if he gets in two one hour naps, and then there are days like today, where he only took one one hour morning nap.

It's not that they don't put him down for a nap, it's that he won't go to sleep.

So tonight, I tried to keep him up until 7. That was the goal, 7 PM. At 6:45 I popped him in his crib and he complained loudly, which he hasn't been doing, so I took him out, which is when I realized he had a slight funk about him and needed another diaper change.

So I tried to do that. And he screamed. Screamed as if I was plucking his toenails off one by one. I tried to remain calm, I tried to sing song, I tried to ignore him until he calmed down, but it was a twisted fight. He was tired and ready to go to bed, but couldn't go to bed with a dirty diaper. And too cranky and tired to let me change his diaper in a calm fashion.

I have a hard time thinking or a point where I will spank or hit my child, but tonight wasn't the first time I've had to struggle to hold him in position while I just got his diaper on. It goes against every part of your nuturing need when you have to do something like that to your child, when all you want to do is hold him and he won't let you, so you have to get the situation to a point where he can calm down. In this case all I needed to do was get him in his crib, with a diaper on, and I knew he would settle down. And I had to physically force the issue.

And in two minutes he had settled into happy murmurs with his blankets, and I'm left feeling tired and drained.


It would be nice to have one of those "Reading" sidebar things, but that would require updating it with what I am reading, and that's a huge challenge. I don't generally note the title of books I'm reading, and I don't care to start. Particularly when it comes to the mystery-chick lit crap I read. See, it's crap. I know it's crap. It's okay, we don't need to read LITeratchoooor all the time.

But I get sick of the mystery-chick lit, too. And the chick lit EMBEDDED in mystery (thank you, Janet Evanovich). Blah blah blah. They are abrasive to each other. They will fall madly in love. Formula much?

At my latest Bookcrossing meeting, I got a boatload of books from another member who I am essentially using as a library. See, she also hearts the mystery and chick lit, but she branches out. And it's that she's branching out that makes me heart her.

Last week I came home with Blackbird and Still Waters by Jennifer Lauck. Autobiographical. The first book only covers 12 years of her life. Can the first twelve years of your life be covered in a book? Bad things happen to her, unimaginably so. Some sexual abuse, but those events are almost asides to the rest of her messed up life. She continues her story in Still Waters and she turns out normal. And sane. And that, is amazing.

Now I'm reading The Professor and the Madman, also a true story, about two of the people who helped write the Oxford English Dictionary. Seriously.

A few weeks of this and I'll need some fluff again!


Seen on the route to work this morning:


I been looking for a good easate!

Monday, February 27, 2006

Mathematically Defunct

I am continuing merrily along on the Biggest Loser challenge at work - still in fourth place, behind three guys, so I lament the male vs female weight loss differences. We need DIVISIONS here! I'm winning the female DIVISION!


Apparently at the request of several competitors, the organizer of the challenge issued 'statistics' to give everyone a better idea of where they are in the competition and what they need to do to win, etc etc. Her method for doing that was to provide a list of the total number of pounds one needed to lose to catch the leader, and the total body fat percentage needed to catch the leader, independent of each other.

So, she published that SkinnyMini needs to lose 9.98 pounds total to be the winner! And the leader is at 8.8%! And so... SkinnyMini weighed 113.4 pounds at the beginning of the challenge.

She published that SkinnyMini needs to lose 2.27 body fat percentage points to catch the leader! And the leader is at 8.8%! And so... SkinnyMini's body fat percentage was 25.8% at the beginning of the competition.

Are you getting my point here? She published out information that makes it incredibly simple to calculate what everyone's starting point was. After seven weeks of keeping everything mum and tight lipped about who weighs what, we can all find out what was the worst number for each of us.

For your edification - the weight ranges of our group were 113.4 lbs to 218.64 lbs. (SkinnyMini? Actual competitor. Why, I have no idea. I guess because of her body fat percentage). The body fat ranges were 25.8% - 45.8%. I am neither the max nor the min in either group, which is why I'm sharing.

The Family Bed

I posted once about Luke crying it out, and someone responded that he cried because he wanted us and we should all sleep in a family bed. And Esposo and I snorted and guffawed because are you CRAZY?

This past weekend was spent at the Wisconsin Dells at an indoor waterpark complex. My teeny tiny sisters in law and the rest of the family stayed in a suite with three rooms, beds here, there, everywhere, and two portacribs for the 15 month old and the 12 month old. Esposo and I, by the default of having one child, got a room with one bed. And we set up our one portacrib right next to it.

We spent an hour or two at the waterpark on Friday evening and Saturday, not very long at all, actually, as Luke's schedule was different than the four other children, and if we do anything different on the next family trip it will be to say that we're leaving when we're ready, because hanging around waiting for everyone else to get ready took away from our time in the water.

I wasn't nearly as conscious of my much larger thighs and hips and arms as I thought I would be, what with trying to keep Luke's hands from exploring my boobs, and the pain of the razor burn I inflicted all over my right ankle before I realized that there was soap RIGHT THERE and that would stop the razor burn (thank goodness I realized that before I got to the bikini area, though! EEE!). Luke and I enjoyed the kiddie pools and the fountains and he wore himself out, his eyes only open through some sheer force of will that used all his energy so his body was limp and immobile. Except for the wandering hand.

Bedtime was actually a simple process for Luke both nights, he readily grabbed his blankets for sweet sweet sleep. But Saturday morning I woke to find the room fairly cold and Luke was starting to fuss. As the only place for the portacrib was between the bed and the window, I knew it was colder for him, and he wasn't staying covered with his blankets.

So I brought him into bed with us, Mommy and Daddy acting as safety barriers from the floor on either side. This was the first time I have ever done this.

And he tossed. And turned. And kicked, and laid sideways between us. He head butted my head more than once. He squirmed down and flopped his body on top of my bladder. He crawled up and lay on my chest, his head slowing moving down until he was actually laying on my neck. His 90th percentile head started cutting off my oxygen supply.

Finally, finally, he settled down and went to sleep in the crook of my arm. And my arm fell asleep.

So again, Family Bed Aficionados - you are crazy. And I can only imagine how very tired you must be.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

And Still More About Boobs

This weight loss thing is causing unexpected consequences. My weight right now is in the middle of my clothing, and that includes in the middle of my bathing suits. So the bathing suit I wore this weekend was the bathing suit I bought for my pregnancy, and it is, as I so subtlely explained to my Mother In Law, boobilicious.

I haven't really been swimming with a one year old before, and I think I see some mommies laughing at me in the back. Provide WARNINGS people!!

I carried my sweet baby boy into the water and spun him about. We jumped and he laughed, I moved him through the water and he looked entirely freaked out and clung to me, because DUDE, the water is COLD!!

I carried him through the wholesome family water park, children running hither and nigh, and he thrust his hand between my boobs and proceeded to hunt for animal crackers, warm up a little, and see if he could reach my belly button.

And he REALLY needed those little nails clipped.

And looking down the road towards the future with a little boy, my nephew is providing comparative commentary for my sister in law on her 'endowment' versus other women's 'endowment'. Which I thought about as I swung him through the water in a circle and his adorable three year old face was just level with... whoops, kid, we're turning you AROUND!

Friday, February 24, 2006

My Pretty Pretty Undies

I would say the worst part of gaining weight is the clothes not fitting thing. It's such a tangible presentation of 'YOU ARE GETTING FAT(TER)' and leaves you more depressed than you were by merely knowing that the numbers on the scale were going up. I have found, and others have told me the same thing, that if you go and buy new clothes in the larger size and stop feeling as dumpy as you do in your now-too-small size, it can make you feel better, which makes you want to do something about the situation, which makes you want to lose weight.

I have one very cute Lane Bryant (the Fat Girl Store, let's be honest, though they have cute clothes, they are the Fat Girl Store, and every girl who shops there wants to stop shopping at Lane Bryant) outfit from after Luke was born. It was a shirt and skirt with a flowers and bright colors, and it made me feel happy. And I wore it once and now it would be too too large since that was about 30 pounds ago, and I'm very happy about that.

I've now lost enough weight, though, that my cute underwear - the silky stuff, the low cut, the high thigh, the (t-h-o-n-g-s!) fit. If you want to have a really good and confident day, you have to start with the pretty pretty undies.

And they're back!

I enjoy being a girl!

You know how I was complaining I weigh 2.4 pounds more than I did last Saturday and I was all good and blah blah why don't the diet gods LOVE me?

Today I weighed 3.2 pounds less than yesterday. Which if you do the math, carry the two, divide by seven, take the sin of the interior angle, is 0.8 pounds less than last Saturday.

If you also think real hard you'll realize that this is the day AFTER I weighed in at work, which took place a day later than usual because the weigh-taker was out this week, and think that this happens EVERY STUPID WEEK lately, you'll think I am cranky. Also, I really need to be good this weekend, but the teeny tiny families are bringing every snack known to man for 72 hours that they'll be up in the Dells. And I do mean every snack.

For people who DON'T have snacking issues, they just don't understand. I have severe boredom-snacking issues. Especially in places where I don't have a set list of things to do, like I do at home. Sitting around? Why not eat! Ugh.

If you'll notice that two days ago I commented about how it drove me nuts that the kid who wanted gastric bypass wasn't trying to stop snacking? That's why I think I have some basis to comment on that. Because I almost ALWAYS have to consciously stop myself from snacking or keep myself busy enough to not notice that I'm not snacking. And I still notice. I still think 'I have to wait until 11 to eat lunch' and cheer for every five, ten, or fifteen minutes longer that I don't eat.

I'm doing well right now. Esposo and I are both up 25 pounds from when we first met, and that makes me happy - that I'm not up more than him, comparatively. I have a double standard for myself and my husband - he can gain weight and it doesn't bother me, doesn't make him less attractive in my eyes at all. But I don't think it works the same for me.

So, 25.4 pounds to goal!

10.4 pounds by the end of March is the short term goal...

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Kicking the Habit

Luke is done. Done with bottles. Doctors recommend that infants stop using the bottle at a year, and most parents worry some about the transition. Bottles can become comfort sources, and they can ruin little teeth. We've been reducing the number of bottles Luke gets a lot of the past few weeks. And in the past few days, we've just cut him off completely.

And he didn't care.

I think this means infancy is completely behind us and toddlerhood completely upon us. The tantrums were an indication of that. He's learning to reach up to the counters and tables to try and get the things he sees.

He eats real food - last night he dug into a Mexican stew - the beans, the corn, the tomatos, and of course, the meatballs. He's trying to use his little fork to stab his food, and will refuse food simply because I'm holding the spoon.

I'll eat it, Mom, but not when you give it to me.

I think his first words are starting to come out, and 'Dada' actually means 'Dada', not the dog, the cat, where are my toys, and I'd like some milk, please! I think I've heard 'Mo?' for more.

He walks up to his chair to let me know he's hungry, he throws his hands on his head when you ask 'Where's your head?', and he ever so carefully pushes his trains along the tracks.

I know that the transition is a slow one, that he first learned to sit, and then crawl, to grab things and then manipulate them. I know I fed him rice cereal mixed with baby food and held him for nighttime bottles. But those nights already seem as far ago as college.

Momentum Lost

My weight has stalled. Granted, this is the week of which women complain, so there's a very good chance I'm just 'retaining', but it's still a royal pain. Last Saturday I weighed 2.4 pounds less than this! It's Thursday and I have been eating very well all week! I should be closer than I am. And sadly, I won't hit my goal for the weekend of waterpark fun with the teeny tiny sisters in law.

This morning, as I was taking my shower, the light went off in the bathroom. I'm not sure if the whole house went off, or just my bathroom light, but it was very very dark. The bathroom? Is internal to the house. No windows. Also, the shower and toilet is in a second smaller room from the vanity. So in order to let what little light that would be in the hall into the room I would have had to open two doors. And freeze my tuckus off. Instead I crawled around the room blindly trying to find my towel and clothes. Once I had gotten about halfway through, the lights came back on.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Tall, Taller, Tallest

It seems that the world has this general obsession with 'Tall, Dark, and Handsome' when it comes to men. I was just over at Dad Gone Mad's site and noticed that he is certainly taller than his wife. Far, far taller. She reaches the middle of his chest.

I have several friends who are far far shorter than their men, and in the case of The Weasel and his wife, HE'S four inches shorter than her. I know it's awful of me, and I should be more open about this, but I find it incredibly strange looking when the woman is taller than the man. It's throwing the world out of whack people, you are not meeting my general expectations for aesthetically pleasing presentation.

I'm also not liking the foot or more difference between the couple. Pictures of the couple look off kilter. You can't get a good shot of both their faces. When you're a short woman and you're looking up to kiss a guy, you get a kink in your neck.

I wonder how much of the 'tall' requirement of guys has to do with the 'protection' desire women experience. There is something to be said for the fact that women will look for guys who will fight for them. And if they're tall, they're more powerful. Maybe. Perceptionally anyway.

But for you short guys, there are women like me, who just want to be able to look you in the eyes and not need to visit the chiropractor.

Monday, February 20, 2006

All Things Weight Loss

I'm on a diet. Did I mention I'm on a diet? And that I am losing weight? Remember that? I thought so. I try not to write only about that because I realize that some people find weight loss minutia excrutiatingly painful. (But again, friends, I will still email you about it.)

I, however, am obsesesed with the weight loss. I mentioned I watched Fat Camp on MTV last night. That immediately followed True Life: I'm Obese. And that was after I watched Celebrity Fit Club. that I recorded. I just went to Lose the Buddha to check up on her weight loss, because I used to read her blog when I was on the diet/exercise quest of 2001. I log into FitDay to record my weight, and sometimes journal my food. I read some things at 3FatChicks now and then. And because this wasn't enough, I just searched for "Weight Loss Blogs". And Kirstie Alley's Jenny Craig blog popped up, and yes, I've checked in on that one before.

And the kicker? The point? I am annoyed by most of the people in and on these shows/blogs. The children at Fat Camp were whiny and not trying hard enough for me. The 17 year old on True Life contended that he could never not give into a craving, but that gastric bypass would solve all his problems. Kelly whatsherface from Weird Science on CFC complains about being looked at as a piece of meat and yet wears a skin tight dress. LTB can annoy me in her 'Non Weight Loss' blog for reasons I can't even articulate. I can't stand Kirstie Alley as an actress.

Yet for every single one of these people? I want them to succeed at weight loss. I am thrilled by people who post their methods, their successes in trying to lose weight. 84 pounds lost! Wearing clothes they bought in a 'normal' store, not a 'fat' store! Feeling better! Walking further!

As for me, I lost an additional 0.2 pounds to bring my total to 11.6 pounds for the year, and then immediately went out for a bachelorette party Saturday night. Sunday I spent eating far too much food and I was back up 2.8 pounds this morning. Hopefully that will go away quickly to not lose the Biggest Loser challenge at work this week.

I also worked out on Saturday, so that is a good thing!

Searching for

I have a countdown until my husband is finished with grad school. That countdown currently stands at 74 days.

My mother constantly tells me that I have a busy life, that we have more of the life that she wanted for herself and her family. She also constantly says that she is too old, she can't start anything new. I love my mother, but it crushes me when she says these things. I don't know how to respond with anything that will make her stop looking backwards and start living NOW.

Last night I watched 'Fat Camp' on MTV, it sucked me in and I had to watch the entire two hours of it. I watched the kids interact and make poor choices, they often decided not to participate. They whined, they cried, they were exceedingly dramatic. I was annoyed by them, but kept it in my head that they were 13 or 14 or 17, and that I am nothing like I was a those ages. I wished I had gone to fat camp.

High school was, for me, something I had to get through. It wasn't horrible, but nowhere near great. I did things, but I was also convinced that the 'cool' people didn't or wouldn't like me. I was often trapped by my own insecurities. I wish I hadn't been.

Too often I have become part of the cycle of 'When I am married...', 'When I have kids...', 'When we are making more money...'. And it doesn't change things. Sometimes I forget the difference between planning for the future and waiting for it.

Today I'm not going to.

But I can't wait until my throat stops feeling like all the moisture has been vacuummed from it.

Friday, February 17, 2006


You know who you are.

Twitchy now?

Of Cats and Sleeping

I woke up at about 2:30 AM last night and couldn't get back to sleep. First I tried taking my contacts out, because I had foolishly gone to bed with them in. There was a film covering them so it took more effort than it should have to get them out.

When I still couldn't sleep, I hopped on the computer in the 'office'. Immediately, Moxy (the 18 pound cat) jumped into my lap for a snuggle and soon after Simba (the 14 pound cat) came to say hello, and after seeing that Moxy had already taken over my lap, he went on his way.

Before we had the dog, both when I was single and when Esposo was just Boyfriendo, Moxy and Simba slept on the bed. Moxy liked to sleep between my legs, which made flipping over more challenging. If it got particularly cold, he tapped my head in a request to come under the covers and sleep.

The dog has since taken up residence on the floor of the bedroom, and both cats tend to view it as her domain. The dog sleeps like the dead and has frequently missed Esposo coming in at night, so the cats should ease up a bit, but they're cats and dumb like that.

I headed back to bed about 3:30, carrying the cat with me, intent on snuggling in bed with his warm furry body. He was, of course, less than thrilled about being dragged into the lion's den, even though the lion was comatose. I set him up next to me, his paws on my arm and body tucked in close to mine, and forcefully held him there. He tried to pull away a little - you know how cats look when you've got them held down and they're trying to get away? The skin on their head gets pulled back a bit and their eyes get really big? Yeah, he looked like that. I could feel the tension in his body screaming that as soon as I let go, he was gone.

So I pulled the sheet over his head.

Within a few minutes he realized that we have a mattress pad heater, which is essentially a bed-sized heating pad that neither one of us can turn up past level one and even that makes us toss aside the covers in the night, and that I was warm, and the dog wasn't going to eat him. He relaxed, he purred a little...

And then my arm was going numb and I started regretting this whole snuggle with the cat plan.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Is it Thursday?

Life is getting interesting in our household in the work-life balance issue. Esposo accepted the offer to return to intern for a company the had let him go last year because they had no work for him! They offered him double the pay (which was diddly-squat before, so now he'll be making diddly), anywhere from 10 - 30 hours a week with him setting his houes, and with the potential of a full time job after he graduates in May (78 days). The full time job might pay Bumpkus.

This means Luke is going to daycare 5 days a week, which he hasn't done before, ever. We've always managed with two or three days a week, in order to save money. The money Esposo will be making each week will actually cover all the daycare costs for the week, with approximately 43 cents left over. This means that we'll be in a better position, because right now we're paying for two days of daycare which he makes no money to cover...

Esposo working 20-30 hours a week and going to school is going to send our house into chaos, because he won't be able to help out as much on weekends because he has homework. Which, he said he wouldn't be able to do as much housework, and, well, he's awful as housework, and not having Luke at home during the day will probably result in a generally neater house.

But that bathroom is never going to be finished.

And the other interesting point that happened was my boss mentioning that they're looking to fill a new position with the same title I have now but different responsibilities, and that they would consider PART TIME. <- Part time. part. time.

I have been considering whether or not I could be home full time, and that I wanted to talk to my boss about part time opportunities. I am somewhat excited about this! But I haven't talked to my boss yet.

That's the state of things right this very moment. I expect everything will change tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

I Didn't Pay

And I can tell you, next week is going to be doubly hard because of this. While my weight went UP 2.6 pounds, my body fat went down 1%. Which means that 2.6 pounds is less than 1% of my body weight. Well, yeah, otherwise I would weigh 260 pounds.

So next week, even if I lose the 2.6 pounds and then some, my body fat has to remain steady or I'm screwed.

Nap? Please?

This is not a good week. I think I'm screwing up several things just by my inaction, and yet when I try to get the action going, I simply can't. The good news is that I feel better than yesterday, so hopefulyl tomorrow I'll feel better than today. That would be nice.

I have a lot of things to write about, but I can't seem to get that organized either.

1. The baby keeps crawling into the dog crate, but I haven't gotten a good picture of him in there yet.

2. We went to the park yesterday, where Luke stood on grass and woodchips. These things are completely foreign to him, since he's been inside for four or five months and certainly can't remember that long ago. It's fun to watch him try to figure out why the ground isn't exactly even.

3. I need a nap. I am so tired, and I'm sleeping like a rock, I just need another hour or two of sleep, rather than getting just a little bit more each night.

4. I am going to have to pay into the Biggest Loser contest this week at work, since the cake and icecream palooza this weekend left me up two pounds still. I was hoping to shed two pounds yesterday by not eating much and drinking enough water to fill a bathtub, but that only took care of one pound. Dammit.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Parenthood Surprises

There were a lot of things I expected from parenthood, like the screaming. I did not expect that most times the screaming elicits little to no reaction from me. When I know there is no problem, I mostly feel like this is something he has to work out for himself and let him continue with the screaming. Sometimes I try to give him things that might calm the screaming, or show him things that are interesting, but in general I just kind of wait. And oftentimes I walk into the other room and continue with whatever might need to be done.

I'm a mean mommy like that.

Another thing that has surprised me is the food. So far, and yes, I know this is subject to change at any given point, Luke has been willing to eat a lot of things. More so than I ever was, apparently. He eats meats and fruits. He actually REJECTS goldfish crackers in favor of grapes. Obviously, this child has some defective taste buds. The thing about the eating, and the needing to feed him healthy things is that it's caused me to eat healthier. Surprise!

The weaning is another surprise for me, mainly because I never thought about it before. We are now struggling to get Luke to drink from a sippy cup, not a bottle. The wise books or websites or something I picked up down at the local bar told me to offer him water in a bottle and milk in a sippy. Kids will pick the milk, the said.

And they would be wrong. Luke is perfectly content drinking water from the bottle.

Wanted: Maid

Requirements: Must not be afraid of dog. Must not be allergic to cats. Must work cheap, fast, and well.

Esposo has a bite on an old internship, which could bring in some money, but would cause us to need to have Luke in daycare five days a week. That would then drain money precipitously.

I'm not sure how I feel about this. I like our daycare, and five days a week would be much more a routine for Luke and that would probably help out with his sleeping schedule. But then I lose the flexibility I currently have to work a little later three days a week without having to hurry home to pick up Luke, feed the dog, let the dog out, feed the baby, etc etc. I really do not like those days when I have to take care of everything within five minutes of walking in the door.

Esposo noted that he would be less help around the house if he went back to working several days a week, and his weekends would be consumed by homework. This is terrifying because the slowest bathroom remodel ever is still only halfway done, if even that, and I hate the state that our house is in.

But the good news is that spring is rapidly approaching and as it does, I come more and more out of my winter coma state, and can get more done in the evenings. And it's only 80 days until he graduates, and we should be able to get through that miniscul amount of time, right? That's just two Survivors.

Tears and Laughter

I've written about how Luke has been throwing more temper tantrums when he's unhappy with something, when I won't let him do exactly what he wants to do. This is the part of toddlerhood that you always hear the war stories about.

It doesn't seem that an accurate picture of toddlerhood is given with these stories, because I didn't know that as he throws more tantrums, he will also laugh more. Everything is a high or a low now, and the highs are just as high as the lows are low.

Last night I gave Luke a bath and as he splashed about I made silly faces. He laughed so hard his little body shook, so hard he eventually fell over into the water, just catching himself at the last second. He laughed when I played with his toys, he laughed while he played with his toys.

After his bath he sat in front of the office door, opening and closing the door on the dog. She must have been moving to get in the door, but I never saw her, because he woould close the door on her. Only to open it again and laugh his body shaking laugh.

And those little legs that kick the ground in full tantrum mode? Can also stomp out a happy march while he plays.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Long, yes. Relaxing, not so much.

I took Friday and Monday off in order to have a long and relaxing weekend. Relaxing did not apply. Friday I took Luke for his one year pictures at the mall. I got lost going to this mall, which I frequently do, just this one mall, and only when I go one particular way, and since I had thought I knew how to get there...

Anyway, the point was I was five minutes late to the appointment instead of 15 minutes early as I planned to be. Which meant that Luke had no warm up time, he was tossed in front of the camera and he was not at all happy about it. The photographer, a young woman, as all photographers in those places are, was overly hyped on crack and attempting to get Luke to smile. She screamed, she tickled, she made odd noises. Luke gave some half smiles, which she caught on film.

We wandered the mall while the film developed, hitting the mall play area. Luke ran out of my sight for two seconds and into the mall area, shaving a few years off my life.

When we returned to the picture place, they showed me the framed photos from the shoot, one of which clearly showed a tear in Luke's eye. Why on Earth would I want that picture? Nonetheless, photos were purchased, and included in the Thank You cards from his birthday party.

Today we went to the doctor, where Luke pitched a fit because I wouldn't let him play on the floor in the office wearing nothing but his diaper. I'm not so sure about our pediatrician, because we ALWAYS have to wait a damn long time. If this were my doctor, annoying, but fine. But at the pediatrician, they take us from the waiting room, which has toyS and into the examination room, where they have me strip my kid, take his measurements, and then leave us for twenty minutes.

With A toy. That Luke loses interest in in 2 minutes. And then it's play with the crinkly table paper!! And the little cups! Bang the cups!! Turn on the water!! Cotton swabs? So yes, thanks for that wonderful experience.

Luke is in 45th% weight, 60th% height, and 90th% head circumference. So, aside from the head thing, he's AVERAGE people. AVERAGE.

The doctor asked about Luke's motor and verbal skills. I mentioned he started walking two months ago. He said I could look forward to throwing and kicking. Yeah, he does those. Running? On the move. Walking backwards? Yup. Verbal skills? Uh, no. He's a normal baby. Normal. Average. Perfect.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Chatting It Up

Last night Luke and I attended an 'open gym' at a nearby park district. This was the second time we had come, the last time being last week. The 'gym' is used as a preschool during the day, so there are teeny tiny chairs, a small climbing structure, a giant bin of megablocks, little tykes kitchen setups, and shelves and shelves of toys.

I walked in with a sleepy Luke, since he had dozed on the way over, and as I was sitting down with him on the floor, a father sitting with his wife commented that he was cute. And thus began the inane litany of commentary and questions. When did Luke walk, is he a good eater, does he like to grab everything, does he put a lof of stuff in his mouth, how big was he when he was born, natural or c-section, do you have a basement, do you have a gate on the basement stairs... blah blah blah.

After about 15 minutes, his wife and I began exchanging actually useful information - their daughter was three - so we were talking about preschool, and which malls have play areas, where to go with little ones, and the guy lost complete interest and walked away to quiz other parents on their children.

When I was a child, my mother never seemed to be friends with my friend's parents, but she was friends with a couple of my brother's friend's parents. So there were quite a few times where I was shuffled along to play with 'the sibling', whether they were four years younger than me or in my class (and someone I didn't particularly like) or just someone that I didn't like, period. This always seemed to be a raw deal to me, why couldn't my mom just be friends with MY friend's parents??

Last night, Luke was very enamored with the little girl of the Crazy Question Asking Father. He watched her, he followed her. And for her part, she kept asking about the baby and giving him hugs. It was tremendously sweet.

And I am SO not hanging out with the Crazy Question Asking Father.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

The Five Project Rule

I love starting things. The school year, home projects, resolutions, new pads of paper...

I also love finishing things. Usually because I'm so sick of something by the time I finally finish it that I am thrilled. And then I can start something new.

But when I get mired deep in the middle of soemthing that's moving along like molasses (see: bathroom remodel) I lose all excitement for it. I don't want to see it, I don't want to think about it, blah. And then I start other things.

Which is why at the end of last year I had ten or eleven open projects on my desk. Far far too many. I have the multitask, but at ten or eleven, you really have no idea what's going on with any one thing.

So I made a new rule for myself. I could only have FIVE projects open at any given time. So far this is working really well. It motivates me to finish things so that I can start things. And it motivates me to get back into projects that I would really rather shove under the cube wall into my neighbor's cube. Which is what I have been doing all day. Mainly database work, but the most annoying database work ever. Like typing in "Engr" 900 times because the program won't let me cut and paste.

I could ask the admin to do this, but the particular admin who is helping on this project is driving the aforesaid neighbor batshit crazy by making inane suggestions and complaints. I think it's easier to just type Engr 900 times.

The Girls

I have lost 10.8 pounds by my home scale, and 13 by the scale at work. Last night I tried on a few more clothes, despite being two pounds away from my next 'Try On Weight'. I routinely cheat and don't wait for that... Generally I just try on pants, and I have three pairs of pants that are about 5 pounds away from being wearable. This morning as I was getting dressed I decided I would try on some button down shirts...

I have boobs. Or as one ex would say, like a nine year old (giggle included), boobies. The word boobs makes The Financial Enforcer (see, you got a new job and a new name!) laugh. Booooobs.

My boobs, they are on the larger size. Typically a C, but as I gain weight, they grow to D's. Also, I had a baby last year, in case you weren't aware. I think this caused the boobs to grow and change shape quite a bit.

Larger boobs get in the way. One of the worst problems with larger boobs is button down shirts. Because they're not designed to fit over the bigger boobs, and then you get the dreaded button gap, and you're showing the world your bra. So I tried on several of my old button down shirts this morning, and most are still far too tight across the frontal acreage.

Having bigger boobs and a smaller waist can make you look heavier than you are, because of how clothes lay on your body, so you have to be careful of the clothes you pick out. And then there's the problem with just having things protruding from you chest. Ever back up to let someone through in a tight space, and have it essentially be the same as shoving your boobs at them to be hit, pushed, or smashed?

Let's just not talk about running and the joy of getting into and out of a properly supportive sports bra.

At this point in my life, I'd be very happy with a nice B cup. I mean, these things didn't even do that good of a job with producing milk, and that's what they're for! They were good at chest traps in soccer, though. All that fat absorbed the impact and stopped the ball dead.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Very Productive!

I have been very busy today preparing for Luke's birthday party (ie, calling places to make food for me. And that would be Portillo's. Because the kid is from Chicago and many of his parties, I'm sure, will be catered by Portillo's. Italian Beef? Si, Italian Beef! This is what we do in Chicago.), getting appointments (my nails and his pictures), booking the dog in a kennel for the weekend in which I will be tortured by the fact that my sister in law is thinner than me at five months pregnant than I am after LOSING 12 pounds, and generally organizing and planning my life.

I even got a few things done for work. I have a little stack of post it notes indicating phone numbers and appointment times for various events because Esposo took my Palm. But let's face it - if I had the Palm, I'd still have the little pile of post-its, and that's why I let him take the Palm. I let the batteries die and then I lose everything in there (which, seriously, could they not have planned that better??)

The weight loss about knocked me over this morning, because the scale said 1(X-1)6.4. So I continue to be rockin' in that regard and could win $210. Which would be for me me all me!! Perhaps I would get a new outfit? Or a real hair cut and highlights? Oh, the choices! Esposo thinks that people will continue to suck it up as the contest goes along, and I'm in a groove.

But as I am wont to do, I knock myself down by asking, If this is coming along so easily, WHY COULDN'T YOU HAVE DONE IT BEFORE?? Nothing like a positive attitude!

Monday, February 06, 2006

Biggest Loser!

Okay, I'm doing really well in the contest at work. The standings are:

1. 9.02%
2. 6.27%
3. 6.13%
4. 5.13%
5. 4.50%
6. 3.77%
7. 3.03%
8. 1.90%
9. 1.74%
10. 1.64%
11. 1.64%
12. 1.05%
13. 0.31%
14. -1.17%

I'm number 3. The pot is at $210. I could buy a NICE new outfit with $210. I NEED MORE MOTIVATION, FOLKS!!

He is THAT Cute

I know every mother thinks their baby is the cutest one, but I'm different, because I'm right! I love this picture, taken as he was watching Baby Wordsworth for the umpteenth time. He's becoming SUCH a toddler, with the laying on his tummy to watch (though this makes the hand waving as he attempts to mimic the sign language difficult).

Home Improvement is Killing My Nails

When we put the shower base in, I ripped my thumbnail off below the quick. Last night, moving the vanity cabinets into place, I ripped my index fingernail off - fortunately not below the quick, so not painful, just annoying.

We are closing in on finishing this bathroom, and it's very exciting to me. Because it's giving me time to think about the list of other projects we want to start on the house. In no particular order:

1. Finish Esposo's closet (Drywall hole, install shelving units)
2. Finish crown molding in dining room (caulk, sand, caulk, sand, paint)
3. Put up crown molding in living room
4. Finish decorating Luke's room (mural)
5. Regrade backyard
6. Pressure wash and seal concrete patio
7. Build stair to back patio
8. Fill and seal garage floor
9. Build and install shelving/cabinetry in garage
10. Frame out basement
11. Rip down paneling in family room and put up drywall
12. Rip out vanity/medicine cabinet in 'kid' bath and replace
13. Stain and put up closet doors in front hall
14. Put normal closet bar in front hall closet
15. Rip out entire kitchen, including sliding glass door and replace all

The funny thing is, we considered this house to be in 'move-in condition' when we bought it.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Seymour Hates Taxes

I was driving home last night behind any annoying slow person in a big ol' giant sedan. A good friend drive a big honkin' sedan, and she bought it when she was 25 or so, so I don't immediately judge sedans to be old people.

But this was an old person. And apparently cranky. There were two bumperstickers on the car, which is odd nowadays because people just don't bumpersticker as much anymore.

The one I read first said:

If 10% is enough
Then it's enough for the IRS!

And the second read:

The government hates

Unfortunately, I was still stuck behind this car, so I finally noticed the license plate:


And thanks to Sara for adding in at this point: I didn't know God's first name was Seymour.

And he's really pissed off about government taxes.

Later, I was behind a car with one of those Baby-On-Board-esque suction cupped signs that suggested that you HONK IF YOU SCRAPBOOK! Well, I do have a scrapbook for Luke, but I am NOT going to be honking, nutjob.


I was talking to a high school friend the other day, who went to a different college and had a very different post college experience than I. I mentioned that we have seven weddings this year. Her comment was "Wow, you're back in the wedding game!"... which, no, because we had never been IN the wedding game before.

My friend was engaged before she graduated and married less than a year later. She was in a sorority and her husband was in a fraternity, and as seems to be the custom in those situations, they went to DOZENS of weddings right after college.

I went to... hers (Wait, I just remembered two others. So, three. I went to three). My own wedding took place over three and a half years after graduation, and I took five and a half years to graduate. We were still one of the earlier marriages in the circle of friends. And while our friends are starting to pair off and marry, Esposo and I still count a number of single people in our group of friends (who we never see anymore, because we have a child, no money, and are hermits).

In that first summer after my friend was married, I studied abroad in Germany, and one day I received an email from her saying she had lost her job and she didn't know if she and he husband would make it through this. I think she was being dramatic, but since I was in Germany and couldn't really call, I never knew the whole story. They have been married for almost seven years now, and have a son just one month older than Luke, so they made it through that rough period.

I can't help but give a slight eye roll as I type 'rough period' here.

Esposo and I have not lived with certainty or simplicity since we were engaged in December 2002. In just over three years we have had job loss, marriage, job change, unintended pregnancy, close family deaths, moving, birth, and now we're simply facing the latest challenge - Esposo finding a job post MBA graduation. The last six or eight months has been the calmest period of our marriage, when we have only had a new baby, school, work, and home improvement to juggle everyday.

And when I look at my choice in partners, I think I hit the jackpot.


Now, you might think that I'm sore from the running. I thought I would be sore from the running. But my legs feel fine. What hurts is my shoulders, because I've spent the last two evenings sanding and mudding and painting the walls and ceiling of our bathroom. The good news is that we need only put about two more coats of paint on the ceiling and one more coat on the walls.

I can add 'new drywall needs 74 coats of paint' to the things I have learned in this remodel process.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

The People I Deal With, But Not Everyday. Thank God.

I work in a manufacturing plant. We make stuff in big tanks and then we put the stuff in bottles and tubes. Most of my job is making sure we make the stuff right. And when you're making sure of that, you have to talk to the people who DO the making of the stuff and putting it into bottles and tubes.

And that's where things get interesting.

We have one guy who likes to randomly burst into song. Loud singing.

There's the woman on the line who asked me, after I told her I had a son, "How old is the hen that laid the egg?"... what? And after I said 29, told me she thought I was 35.

And the errors people make? Are incredible. Task: Line up the bottles so they go get filled with liquid. Result: Bottle placed upside down, liquid everywhere! And my favorite part of that one was the adamant refusal to accept resposibility. "It's not my fault!" Yeah, the building ghosts are responsible.

Today I have to deal with a whole line of annoyance. We were starting up, and I was going to take some samples. But it was 25 minutes before lunch, so everyone on the line - six people - moved as slow as freaking possible so they wouldn't have to do anything. AAAAGH!

They should just write in their blogs instead of wasting time like that!


I ran this morning. It has been a long time since I ran, but I knew I was going to have to do it since I was feeling bouncy yesterday or the day before, I don't remember when. But the point was, I had lost enough weight that I was feeling BOUNCY!

So I ran. Actually, first I walked for 6 minutes, then I ran 12 minutes (or a mile), and then I walked two minutes.

You may commence mocking me for my incredibly slow running pace. I'd like to point out that this is merely my STARTING point, and I ran a mile CONSECUTIVELY the first time out. But then I'd have to tell you that my fastest mile EVER was about 8.5 minutes in high school, and when I was in good shape I could only run two miles in about 19 minutes. I. Am. Not. Fast.

But I'm mean and I bite, so don't try to mug me. And my fingernails get REEAALLY long.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Weigh In!

Today was the fourth Biggest Loser weigh in at work. This week is a 'big' prize - $20 to the overall Biggest Loser for the last four weeks. We're one third of the way through the contest!! The calculations are odd, it's your percent body fat lost plus the percent weight lost divided by two. I think.

The winner right now is a guy, and his percentage is about 9. I'm in the group of three or four behind him, though, with a 6.17% overall. I don't know how much body fat I've lost, but here's the good thing - I've lost it without working out, which means that I can add working out to my schedule now and kick this whole thing into a new gear.

I'll post the results when the organizer (who, by the way, left me cookies to thank me for something unrelated to the contest... cheater) gets them out!

According to my scale I've lost 8.6 pounds. The work scale claims 11. Did I mention we're 1/3 of the way through? If I lose 17 - 22 more pounds, I will be ecstatic!