Friday, January 30, 2009

12 Weeks

My dad says it's time for an update... apparently, the grandparents need a "Charlie fix." Damn junkies. :-)

Playing on his tummy time mat

Charles turned 12 weeks old yesterday, and will turn 3 months old next week (yes, some months have more than 4 weeks... this is why pregnancy is 9 months but usually 40 weeks). He smiles all the time, charming anyone in his path. He also screams loudly, giving me a headache at least once per day. I have been trying to head off the "too tired" screaming by anticipating when he will get sleepy (after about 2 hours of awake time), but this is difficult when I try to have a life at the same time - he sleeps in the car, disrupting the so-called "schedule." However, I have been successfully putting him down IN HIS CRIB for two naps a day, and tonight I am going for gold with the overnight in the crib (or as long as possible). Tony is playing poker with the boys, so it's just me, Charlie, and my resolve to get my bed back.
Sleeping in the crib

We thought Charles might have a tooth coming in because he was inconsolable for a few days, but it appears to have gone back into hiding. I didn't know teeth could a) show up as early as 3 months and b) appear and recede, potentially causing months of pain. What fun! Charlie continues to gain weight and grow, though I have no idea exactly how large he is now. I do know that he is firmly in 6 month or 9 month clothing, depending on the brand. He seems to have a long enough torso to be in 9 month clothes, but his legs and arms aren't quite there yet. He babbles pretty constantly now, which is tons of fun.

Aren't I cute?

The rest of us are hanging in there. Buster is bored, but we go play with other dogs in the park at least once a day. Sometimes we get two walks per day, which is great for him!

Getting ready for a walk in the bear suit

But it's cold, so it is a big process to get us all out the door. I am still quite fat, and I am exhausted, so for the first time since I was cleared for exercise, I did not make it to the gym at all this week. Nope, no exercise since I ran 2 or 3 miles with the dog this weekend. It is just soooo hard to get up at 6 am when I feel like I am going going going all day long. You see, tax season has begun, so Tony comes home from work around 7, has dinner, and then goes back to work. Or, sometimes we take dinner to him. Which makes me primary diaper changer, head book reader, playtime leader, laundress, maid, cook, and more. "Fun" things like going grocery shopping have become a race to get in and out of the store before Charles begins screaming because he hates his carseat/carrier. I can't wait until he can sit up on his own so I don't have to haul him around in that heavy thing! He will be much happier when he is not permanently buckled in to go everywhere, and can instead chill in the sit-up stroller or the shopping cart. Anyhow, all this adds up to fatigue me to no end, and that's when I really miss my husband, and all the help he gives me around here when it's not tax season.
Playtime!

Well, there you have it. I sometimes wish I was more interesting than this, but really, my life is pretty boring.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Smelly

I have reached that point where just about everything smells like baby poop. Betcha didn't know there was a point like that. Not so appetizing.

Cue gratuitous baby photos:






Sunday, January 18, 2009

Whistler!

Tony's job has its perks - namely, that his firm pays for Continuing Professional Education, which is frequently held in some exotic location, like Delaware.

While we haven't made it to Delaware, yet, we did go to Whistler from the 15th through the 17th and stayed at the Fairmont Chateau, a ridiculously lavish hotel. Tony got to ski one day, and we all went on the Peak 2 Peak gondola that was created for the 2010 Olympics. It was a great little vacation, and we had a ton of fun :-)

Charles thought that the view from the Peak 2 Peak was awesome.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Squish Face!

Hmm, what's this?


NOM NOM NOM... Hands taste good.

Let's see if I can get that whole thing in here...

These wiggly things make this an interesting dish

Wait! Where did that hand go?

Is it over there?

DID YOU TAKE IT?
.
.
.
Conserving energy for another day of hand-chomping.
Will you look at those cheeks?! It's a wonder I don't fall over dead from their cuteness.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Steve Perry Psych Out

Charles loves to dance to music (especially Journey) on the radio:


video

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A "clean" break

Hi there,
Just a quick post from the nimble one of the family.

Have you ever carried a large box down stairs and thought you were on the last step when you weren't? No? I have done this several times. Usually while moving from the various apartments I lived in through college.

There is a proven method to survive such a miscalculation: 1) hold box close to body 2) prepare for impact. Pretty simple method and one I have employed more times than I would really like to admit.

Earlier tonight we headed downstairs to watch a movie. Charlie was asleep in his rocking chair and I figured I would just carry the whole chair down instead of picking him up and possibly waking him.

I'm sure you already know where I'm going with this...

I missed the last step.

However, the above method does not work when carrying a child's rocking chair. So, instead of crushing my son, I think I broke my toe. If so, this would actually be the first non-tooth bone I've ever broken.
Amelia sometimes thinks she has the corner on the market for clumsy...she's wrong:).

Scratch that...I think I may have broken three toes. I guess I won't be skiing next week when we go to Whistler.

The Tale of the Boy Who Wouldn't Sleep

Charles slept for most of yesterday, and didn't eat very much (compared to the near-continual chomping on my boob he has done for the past 9 weeks). I thought maybe he had decided to spend a day growing and would sleep all night, too. But no.

I tried to wake him during the day and keep him active, I really did. But have you ever tried to keep a sleepy infant awake? It really isn't too possible. You end up with one of two outcomes: crying or sleeping. You start to play with them, you put them in the crib they hate, and they wake up crying. You walk around with them in what must be uncomfortable positions for their little bodies, and they still sleep. Fruitless.

Charles woke up around 8 pm and decided to stay up until midnight. But at midnight, he would not really sleep.


Not in his crib.

Not on Tony's chest.

Not in our bed.

Not on my chest (can't be that comfortable, what with the jutty collarbone and the mountainous breasts).

Not in the rocker.

Not curled up with me on the couch.


Where would he sleep?

Over my shoulder, as I bounced and walked up and down the stairs. You try keeping that up all night.
On top of which, Buster scared the bejesus out of himself and us at around 4 am, when he knocked over the Christmas tree that we hadn't yet gotten around to taking down. Fortunately, I had stripped it of its ornaments a week ago.

This morning, an angel in disguise, my friend Rachael, brought us a motorized swing, once rejected by her own son. Charlie loves it.
I think we might get some sleep tonight, if only because he will sleep in this swing.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Charlie answered the phone.

It's for you.

A New Year

Did you remember to set your clocks ahead one second?

Every year, my dad creates a set of New Year's Resolutions. The printed list of ten or so intentions for the coming twelve months gets tacked to his board in front of his computer and serves as a reminder of what he deems important in his life. At least until the list is covered by something else important.

Nonetheless, it is a good exercise, but I think it deserves more. After all, if you are creating "resolutions," does that not mean you are "resolving" to do something? Something more than write your vague intentions on a list? I prefer to think of them more as reminders and goals than resolutions, I guess. In that way, I feel I can capture the spirit of the new year, of starting fresh, without the guilt that probably would hit me in December of 2009 if I didn't follow through with my resolutions, if my resolve wasn't somehow tough enough. This is where Tony would tell me I should stop feeling so damned guilty about things.

So, I plan to start my reminders and goals with a bit of reflection. 2008. What a year. This was the year we lost my last remaining grandparent, Grandma Lorna. That pretty much occupied the first couple months of 2008. Her death was not unexpected, but it profoundly affected my family and I still miss her terribly. I especially think of her when I see my parents and Tony's parents interact with Charles; after all, Lorna was the only grandparent I really knew beyond my childhood years. I love all of my grandparents with a love I can't really define because it is so unconditional - Charles is named after a grandfather I never met but whom I truly wish I had and whom I love without knowing - and I pray that Charles will know all of his grandparents well into his adulthood. It is a special bond and something I don't want him to miss. And I think I value it all the more because it is something I did not have with many of my grandparents and something I miss on a near-daily basis from Grandma Lorna.

Then, shortly after grandma's memorial, I got pregnant. Hiding that from the world was sure fun, and I think everyone was truly surprised when we spread the news. You see, we were going to wait at least another year before trying for a child. I honestly think that the death of Tony's grandma the year before and the impending death of my last grandparent kicked me in the butt and made me realize that I was burning time for the relationships that my children would have. So I, supremely unready, and Tony, supremely ready, decided to go for it. I am so glad we did, as I now get to hold a squishy little boy who regularly lights up my life with the simplest of actions.

The pregnancy pretty much occupied the rest of the year, along with vast amounts of work, a couple of vacations, a house remodel, and Buster. We had a bit of trouble with Buster toward the end of the summer - as I got larger and more obviously pregnant, he got more and more aggressive until we had to make a decision about letting him go or beginning a harsh training regimen. I grieved for days about the mere possibility of losing my Buster. I still tear up now when I think about losing him, EVER. So, we decided to begin training, and I am happy to report that Buster is completely rehabilitated. He even handed out candy this Halloween, when months before he would not have let anyone approach the door without barks, snarls, and biting attempts. Also, he plays with little kids who come to our house, giving me immense hope that he and Charles will be best friends. Probably the funniest thing he does since Charles has been with us is let me know when I am not answering the baby's cries fast enough. If I am in the kitchen and Charles is in his crib and fussing, Buster will come to the top of the stairs and whine at me to take care of the baby! He is deeply concerned with Charles, and guards the doors to our rooms at night.

Ah, yes, and then, in November, I birthed a large baby with no drugs in less than an hour of active labor, and our lives changed forever, again. Since then, the days have been a blur of diapers, feedings, playing, headaches, walks, baby smiles, crying (me and Charles), and so much more. My house is a mess. I'm giving up dairy to see if it helps Charles' tummyaches, so that makes me a bit cranky. I started working out last night after getting the all-clear from my doctor. None of us are getting enough sleep. And we're having the time of our lives.

Now, on to the goals and reminders:
  • Lose all the baby weight and get into my size sixes again
  • Lose enough weight to fit into my fat jeans by February (I'll leave this vague as to whether I mean the beginning or end... thus giving myself more of a chance to reach this goal)
  • Create some sort of system for cleaning house
  • Remember that it doesn't matter what the house looks like, so long as everyone is happy and getting sleep
  • Find a way to get back to work at least 20 hours per week by March (I'll be working at Goodwinds - I quit my job at the Chamber, but will also be doing some contract work for them from home)
  • Go to the gym at least 3 times per week
  • Go to Rotary meetings every Wednesday
  • Take dinner to Tony at least 3 times per week during tax season so he has a chance to see Charles
  • Find some time to spend with the dog - he misses us
  • Enjoy and capture every moment and significant event with Charlie (in my memories or on film) because they only happen once
  • Love my husband and appreciate the amazing things he does for his family
  • Take more trips to the beach to see the folks this year

Wow. I could go on, but I think those are the big ones. Happy New Year!