Showing posts from 2006

Just around the corner

The start of a new year always leads me to reflect on the previous twelve months. Last year I made a list of the "Top Ten Photos of 2005". That really was a good year--we did lots of cool things and accomplished a lot of goals. I don't feel quite the same way about 2006; in fact, I'm pretty happy to see it go. We did do some big things, like having a baby and moving. But overall I didn't feel very happy for most of the year. Master Fob had to work a lot. Recovering from the shock of having two kids took much longer than I expected. And I'm not much closer to having a master's degree than I was a year ago. On the other hand, I am looking forward to 2007. We're getting settled in to Seattle and it's starting to feel a bit more like home now. I feel a lot more comfortable with having two kids, and Little Dude is more of a human and less of a screaming grubworm now. S-Boogie is starting preschool next week and tomorrow marks her last day in Nursery, s

The Seventh Month

Wow, seven months have come and gone since Little Dude came crashing into the world. This last one flew by particularly fast, and it doesn't feel like a lot has changed since he was six months old. He still has no desire to sit up, which makes bathtime difficult and causes me to compare him too much to his older sister and other babies his age. But, sitting up will eventually come I guess. Right now he's too busy rolling all over the living room, eating the edges of the rug and all the pine needles from the pathetically crispy Christmas tree we really need to take down. He's also become quite talkative this month and loves to carry on little " ba ba ba " conversations with all of us. S-Boogie is starting to interact more with her little brother as well, and a few times I've seen them giggling hysterically at each other. Little Dude is still a bit cranky and doesn't like nap time much, but his disposition is so much better than it was just a few months a

Wherein the wrong lesson is learned

As is her usual custom, S-Boogie refused to eat her dinner and excused herself from the table. She came back a few minutes later looking rather downcast and wiping at her nose. She announced "I have something in my nose" (at least she's an honest little soul), and my heart sank because I remembered the string of beads that had broken earlier today. I thought I had picked up all the beads, but apparently I missed one. Don't worry, S-Boogie found it and discovered that it fit perfectly into her nostril. With the help of a flashlight, we were able to see it and realize that it was a little t00 far up there to attempt safe removal ourselves. After a phone consultation with the doctor's office, we were sent to the emergency room at Children's Hospital (just up the road from our house, thankfully). Our ER visit was nice and low-key, and the staff really is good about catering to children. We were only there an hour or so total, which isn't bad at all. They had s

A Good Holiday

I had been somewhat hesitant about spending our Christmas here without any family members or friends near enough to share it. But it turns out that we can have a lot of fun all by ourselves (not that we don't miss you all very much). S-Boogie and I spent most of Saturday making cookies; she's quite good at applying sprinkles. Sunday evening we drove all over passing them out to friends. We also had dinner on Sunday with friends from our ward; S-Boogie had a great time playing with her little friends. Sunday evening was a highlight for her because we finally found Baby Jesus for her to go see. I had found a listing for a living nativity at a church that would be on our way home from cookie delivery, so we stopped by to see what was going on. It turns out that they had a full-on pageant that you could watch from your car. We got there just as a performance was starting, and S-Boogie was entranced by the donkey, the giant star that lit up above the stable, and the fact that Mary,

Who knew?

Apparently last night was "Stay Up All Night and Harrass Your Parents Night". Nobody told me about it. (It was also "Eat String Cheese at 2 AM Night", but at least it wasn't "Unwrap Your Christmas Presents Early Night" or "Play With Knives Night".)


After getting today's mail, we now have an enormous pile of presents that is threatening to crawl out from under the Christmas tree and take over the living room. I'm overwhelmed by the generosity of our friends and family, and I feel humbled that all we give them in return is an over-long Christmas letter and a bad photo of us. I hope they know how much we love and appreciate them and all they do for us, even though we can never pay them back in the same way. It's also fun to see how excited S-Boogie is about Christmas this year. She really wants to open her presents, but she's also in love with Christmas itself and the idea of Baby Jesus. In a sort-of related comment, I am feeling really jealous after reading the Christmas letter we received from friends who are living in Honolulu right now. They will only be there for a year, so I imagine that that fact makes them even more grateful for the opportunity, but I'm still envious of their ability to go to the beach on

Five days and counting

We finished up our Christmas letter, and Master Fob will stop at the Post Office today after work to send it on its way to our friends and relatives. We managed to do it with surprisingly little stress this year, having finally learned some lessons from previous years. Like don't try and print the entire thing plus envelopes and mail it all in one afternoon. That's not good for family harmony. I was a little disappointed in our photo this year, though Tolkien Boy and Sir Jupiter did an admirable job trying to capture the elusive S-Boogie. Quality photos were made impossible by bad lighting in our apartment, our crazy schedule and the crazy weather that prevented us from going somewhere nice to take the photo, uncooperative small children, and the fact that Skye is in Morocco and doesn't have a telephoto lens that big. Maybe next year will be a better year for photos. I also hope people won't be freaked out by our two-page letter this year. We'll try and condense mo

Mission Accomplished

Well, sort of. This afternoon we had to get a prescription filled at the drugstore, so I took the opportunity to help S-Boogie pick out a present for Daddy. While we were there I found something fun that I think he'll like, and it's not a book or CD, so I'm proud of myself. And I contacted a lady from craigslist this morning about buying a set of doll toys she had listed. It's a stroller, high chair, and a baby doll that comes with some play food, play binkies , and a play toothbrush and toothpaste. She's been advertising the set for a while, but had it listed at fifty bucks, which seemed like a lot to me. She recently dropped the price a bit, so I decided to go for it. The stroller and high chair are from Little Tikes , so good quality plastic, and after doing some research I realized that the stroller alone was at least twenty dollars new. And it's going to be S- Boogie's main big present (and her only one from us), so I guess it's worth it. We got

Switching Over

I just switched over to Blogger Beta. It was a little scary, but so far everything is fine. I got sick of not being able to comment on everyone else's blogs as FoxyJ . The only difference is that on Master Fob's family blog I'll be Foxy instead of my real name. But whatever. They know who I am. We also have switched Little Dude over to formula, more or less. For right now I'm still nursing him about 3 times a day, plus any times at night. Well, we're trying to cut out the night feedings and he's been doing a great job this week. He got up at five this morning, so I went ahead and fed him since he'd been asleep most of the night. So far things seem to be working really well. When he does nurse, I'm usually pretty full and he doesn't get fussy. And he doesn't mind the bottles at all, even though I think I want to get better ones next time we have a little extra money. We got the cheapest ones available at Target, and turns out they really aren'

Foxy the Iconoclast

The other day we were putting up our Christmas decorations and S-Boogie asked about the stockings. She thought they were pretty cool, and of course asked what they were for. I started to say that Santa would fill them with goodies, but I couldn't say it. It's not true--Santa doesn't exist and it's Mom and Dad who will fill them with treats (she'll probably actually get some real candy this year too). So I told her something like "When you wake up on Christmas morning, there will be treats in your stocking". I just couldn't tell her that Santa will be bringing her stuff. Every Christmas the Santa issue raises it's head again. It's a complicated one for me, and my response to it is evolving and will keep evolving as my kids get older. Part of the problem is that I'm really bad at pretending to believe something that I don't. I'm a terrible actress, I can't lie to save my life, and I always feel uncomfortable on Halloween because I

It's beginning to look (and smell) a lot like Christmas

For the first few years of marriage we had a tiny little artificial tree that we bought while living in Wymount, which forbids real trees lest they burn down the cinderblocks and cement. Finally, last year, we got a real tree and I remembered why I love them so much. This year I had hoped to start a new tradition by venturing out to a tree farm. However, with school and all the other things going on in our lives, a good day for a tree hunt has had trouble materializing. We had planned to go tomorrow, but the weather website predicts "heavy rain" for the entire day and the next few days as well, so tonight I gave up my romantic ideas and had Master Fob walk over to the grocery store to get us a tree. It turns out that it doesn't matter where the tree comes from--it still looks and smells wonderful in the corner of your living room. And it also turns out that my plastic candy canes from Pic N Save are still holding up after all these years and they are perfect for little pe

The Dilemma

Little Dude had his six-month check up on Thursday. He now weighs exactly sixteen pounds, which puts him the 20th percentile or so for weight. That simply means that 80 percent of babies his age weigh more than he does, and 20 percent weigh less. That's really not all that bad, and our pediatrician isn't worried about him. But I am starting to worry a bit. You see, his weight and height were in the 75th percentile at his two month check up. He's been slowly falling down the chart for the last four months. He was also weighed in October at the county health office. If their scale was correct, he weighed 15 pounds then and has only gained one pound in the last two months. I know everything about how some kids are just small and gain weight more slowly. S-Boogie only weighed about 17 pounds when she turned one, and even now at nearly three-and-a-half she barely hits 30. She's just a small person, and always has been. Her weight has stayed pretty consistently in the 10th pe

Can't get it out of my head...

Ever since this story broke out earlier this week I haven't been able to stop thinking about it. Maybe it's the fact that I have kids practically the same ages. Maybe it's just the sheer randomness of the whole thing. I just keep thinking of what it must have been like, the terror increasing incrementally as you miss your turnoff, make a wrong turn, lose your cellphone reception, etc. I don't blame the guy for setting out on his own--I probably would have done the same thing. I also find it interesting how every so often some tragedy or another makes the news for a while, and then we never hear any more about what happened. I always wonder what happens to people years later, after the news fades and they are no longer "current events". I think of some of the traffic accidents I've come across and wish I knew what happened to the people involved. I hope that this woman and her children will be all right some day. They'll never be the same, but I hope th

I really should be writing my thesis right now

And not blogging. Or, even worse, checking plane ticket costs on Farecast . If you haven't tried that website, you really should. It's really cool; I especially like the graph section for flexible dates. And I really should not be finding out that if I left tomorrow I could fly to Honolulu for only $348 round trip. Or only $197 for a trip to Vegas. Sigh. I'd better get back to writing right now...

Book Reviews: Mothers and Daughters

Hillbilly Gothic by Adrienne Martini This is a memoir about a woman who checks herself into the psych ward two weeks after having a baby, and what her troubles with depression lead her to find out about her family heritage and herself. It was well-written and I found a lot of her insights interesting, but overall I wasn't very wowed by this book. One of my fears in writing a memoir would be that my life really wasn't that interesting to other people; I think in some ways some of this book feels that way to me. More women need to speak out about depression, but I felt like too often she was talking around things in such a way that I didn't get a very good sense of what was going on. But it was still a good read and I would recommend it to anyone who likes to read memoir. West of Then by Tara Bray Smith Another memoir, this time by a woman who grew up in Hawaii. She alternates between the present problem of trying to track down her mom, who is now a homeless junkie in Honol

What we need

We need fewer talks about how motherhood is a high and noble calling and more about how motherhood sometimes means that your hands smell like poop and your shirt has avocado spit up on it.

Homemade Baby Food: Easy as 1-2-3

Any time I mention the fact that I make my own baby food, people tend to be rather impressed. The truth is, I'm not so much ambitious as I am cheap. I actually don't buy organic fruits and veggies and I'm lazy enough that I don't make my own applesauce or baby cereal. With S-Boogie I did make my own cereal, but this time around I don't care. I like the nutritional assurance that comes with fortified commercial cereal, and when I can find it I'm going to buy the whole grain kind. The last time I went to the store they were out of stock. So, the baby food making. All you need is a blender, a few ice cube trays (I have some I bought just for baby food), and freezer bags. Oh, and a marker to write on the bags. It doesn't take that much time or that much money at all. For instance, the other day I bought 3 sweet potatoes. They were on sale for a dollar a pound (probably cheaper in Utah, but that's cheap for here). I took those sweet potatoes home, peeled them

Six months old!

Little Dude's milestones seem to be marked by unusual weather patterns. His birth was on an unseasonably cold May Sunday, and today Seattle is enjoying freezing cold temperatures and snow. Perhaps for his birthday we'll have a hurricane or something. The last few months have flown by and I find it hard to believe that we're now on the downward slope to one year old. Over the last few weeks Little Dude has really started to look and act like an older baby. He doesn't get as much floor time as he probably should, since he's kind of needy about being held and he has a little sister who likes to express her love by dropping things on him. But, when he does get down on the floor he is getting very good at rolling all over and grabbing things. Lately he's developed an obsession with grabbing anything within his reach, so I have to really be on my toes. I wore him in the snugli to a Thanksgiving potluck, and when I looked down he had grabbed a big chunk of ham off my p

Another thing I am grateful for

The other day my sister sent me an interesting email. She is volunteering with the Peace Corps and was describing some of the difficulties women face in her country. One of their biggest problems is ignorance about women's health issues and access to contraception and proper health care for women. If I lived there, my first birth experience probably would have killed me, and if it hadn't, my second surely would have. I have often thought that I am grateful to live in this time period because of the medical care I've received, but it was sobering to realize that many women who live on the Earth today are not as blessed as I am. Besides the medical care issue, I am very grateful that I have access to contraception and am able to use it. This issue has been on my mind for a while; a few months ago the New York Times Magazine ran an interesting article about the fact that many evangelicals seem to be jumping on the "anti-contraception" platform that was recently reaf

Coat Story

I have a new coat. Do you have a new coat? I have a new coat. Yes, this morning we broke our yearly tradition of avoiding stores on the day after Thanksgiving. Master Fob had to take some shoes back to Sears and we had a little cash from the sale of his comic books , so we bought him a new watch, the kids a new diaper bag (our other one bit the dust the other day), and me a new coat. This is really only the fourth or fifth coat I've owned in my life, as far as I can remember. When I was small we lived in San Diego, and I never needed a coat. We moved to Idaho for a few years and I remember owning a puffy pink coat and groovy light blue moonboots. Then we moved back to California and I didn't wear a coat on a very regular basis. At some point during high school I acquired a dark green jacket from Land's End. When we moved to Maryland during my senior year of high school, this coat came in very handy. It accompanied me to Utah and served me well for three years of college. Al

Happy Thanksgiving

Although I was feeling a bit sad about being far from family, we ended up having a very enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday this year. Master Fob had all day Wednesday off as well as Thursday, so we spent Wednesday cleaning our house, baking pie, and enjoying our new DVD set of Season Eight of the Simpsons ("Bart! Where did you get that shirt?" "I dunno, it just came out of the closet.") Yesterday we cooked up a Thanksgiving feast. Well, the plan was for Master Fob to help, but these days any two person job really means that one of the people will be in charge of supervising the children. So cooking by myself was actually a break from what I usually do all day. I felt kind of silly cooking all that food for just our little family, but it was fun and everything turned out tasty. We had turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, marshmallow sweet potatoes, sauteed green beans, strawberry jello, rolls, and pumpkin pie. I did take a few shortcuts--the stuffing was Stove To

5 Reasons I Love Master Fob

These are not the only five, but since today we celebrate five years of marriage I thought I'd pick that number: 1. He's an awesome daddy to our kids. 2. He works hard and makes a good impression at every job he has. 3. He always looks and smells good, even first thing in the morning. 4. He has a great sense of humor; after five years we still haven't used up all of our "your mom" jokes. 5. He supports me in whatever I want to do, whether it's going to grad school or trying out for Jeopardy! or even making chocolate chip cookies three times a week. Happy Anniversay!

Things I am thankful for this week

Warm apple cake with butter sauce Cool friends who stop by while they are in town A working washing machine Living in Family Housing where they have playgroups and potlucks and other fun things Nice people at church who hold my baby My brown corduroy skirt I got at D.I. Two days in a row without rain Split pea soup made with the ham bone The day-old bakery table that has gourmet rolls for half-off Flowers from Master Fob Adverbs by Daniel Handler Baby talk Toddler giggles

Don't ever wake a sleeping baby...

...or three-year-old. I just went in to put Little Dude down in his crib (yay, he's taking a nap). S-Boogie is actually sleeping in her bed today too. Unfortunately, she's sleeping in a poopy, leaking pull-up. I know it's leaking because she went to sleep without her pants on. So I just carefully put her pants back on to contain the mess, and she kept sleeping. Yeah, I'm a naughty mommy. But she's taking a nap and so is he, and I'll deal with the leaking diaper when she wakes up. Maybe she'll sleep until Master Fob comes home and then he can deal with it. Oh, I am truly evil.

Happiness for $2.99

I have always been a little hesitant to use air fresheners. Sometimes it can be a nice touch in a bathroom, but sometimes instead of covering up the smell you end up with a bad mix of flowers and poop. But when S-Boogie was tiny and I was looking for a nightlight for her room, I happened upon the fabulous Glade Plug-Ins with nightlight. I plugged it in next to the diaper pail and voila--happy smell and pleasant nightlight in one handy package. At some point over the last few years the air freshener migrated to the bathroom and sometimes I manage to remember to get refills for it. The other day in Target I noticed Glade's new "holiday" fragrances and decided I liked the smell of the "Glistening Snow" candle. I bought some refills, came home and plugged them in. Later that day I walked by the bathroom and stopped short. It smelled wonderful ! The package states that this particular scent combines the aroma of "fresh-cut wood and warm holiday spices". It

They definitely have my business

As I might have mentioned before, our apartment is only steps away from a large outdoor shopping center. Most of the stores are way out of our budget (Pottery Barn, Coach, etc.), but they have a big nice grocery store that is just a short jaunt across the parking lot. When I first shopped there I quickly realized that it is probably a little too upscale for starving students. They have a custom sushi bar in the deli section, for instance. We have ended up shopping there most of the time, however, simply for the sake of not having to take our car to go anywhere else. And since I shop with the sales and stock up on some stuff at Costco, it's really not hurting our budget much. A few weeks ago we discovered the biggest reason to shop there: in-store child care. Yes, child care at the grocery store. They have a little "kids club" where kids can hang out for up to an hour while their parents shop. I'd noticed it the first time I was there, but felt weird about using it. Th

Baby clothes with a message

Today Little Dude is wearing a cute, warm outfit that happens to have the following message written across the front: "My Favorite Things: Basketball, Dinosaurs, and Really Fast Cars". He has a lot of clothes that proclaim things about himself, like that he's an "All Star" an "MVP" and even a "Little Lumberjack". I think it's kind of strange how we project our own ideas onto babies like that. Maybe it's because they are so mute and so neutral that we want them to start taking sides. When I went to my conference last month one of the other grad students who went with us brought her baby as well. Her little girl is just a few weeks older than Little Dude, and one day we dressed them both in jeans and matching T-shirts that said " La Vida es Sueno " (the shirts were given to all the grad students with kids by some cool professors of ours). It was funny to see people's reactions--despite the fact that the babies looked exact

I never thought poop would be so important in my life

This week we moved S-Boogie from regular diapers into pull-ups (aka "panty diapers"). We still aren't to the official potty training point, because she's realized rather quickly that she can still just pee in her pull-up and it's no different from peeing in a diaper. We're planning on doing "potty boot camp" in a few weeks when Master Fob will be home for a while and can help out. It should go a little better for all of us with Daddy here helping. I mainly switched to the pull-ups because she's been asking more often to go potty and they're easier to deal with than regular diapers. I've been trying to remember to ask her to go potty often during the day, but I haven't been very good about reminding her. We are getting in the habit of sitting on the potty before naptime though. On Tuesday she pooped in the potty for the very first time, right before naptime. Yesterday and Wednesday she simply pooped in her pull-up rather than telling m

Ten Reasons Why I'm Not a Fashionista

1. I don't wear any jewelry besides my wedding ring. Once upon a time I wore earrings and even sometimes necklaces, but I haven't done either for years. I've always hated bracelets. 2. Those tall leather boots with big heels really scare me. 3. Actually, I don't like to wear any shoes with heels. I prefer not to wear shoes at all, so the less shoe the better. 4. I like to wear jumpers. With white cotton knee-highs underneath to keep my legs warm. I don't really like to wear shirt and skirt combos, so I'm counting down until Little Dude stops nursing so I can wear dresses to church again. 5. I hate wearing makeup and I have no idea how to put it on. I will sometimes wear some powder, mascara and lip gloss if I want to be "fancy" and distract people from looking at my zits. 6. I don't like wearing black clothes. I don't like white clothes either, because I'm always afraid of getting them dirty. 7. I hate layering clothes, so I've never go

Book Reviews: The Cone of Memory

In the Name of Salome by Julia Alvarez I read Alvarez's other, more famous, book In the Time of the Butterflies a few years ago, and wasn't very impressed. For whatever reason, I just didn't like it very much. I saw this one on the library shelf the other day and grabbed it because it was the only decent-looking choice and I didn't have time to look for a better one. It turns out that I really liked it. Maybe it's because I've learned more about Caribbean history and women's writing; maybe just because it's a good read. I also found the format intriguing: it alternates chapters between the life of a mother and the life of a daughter, with the daughter's chronology running backward and the mother's running forward until they meet up in the end. I liked how anecdotes were alluded to and interwoven throughout the book, creating a full picture of the generations of a family. Sometimes the names and chronology can get a bit confusing, but this seems


I hesitate to even say it for fear that it won't last, but lately I'm starting to feel like my brain is stabilizing a bit. I know a lot of my struggles the last few months have been due to hormones and external stressors like having a baby, moving, and dealing with all the upheaval of Master Fob's jobs and school (and my school), etc... Life seems to be evening out a little more; if nothing else, I know we'll be here for a while and so I don't have the terrible anxiety about the future that I was living with for most of this year. Little Dude is still pretty cranky and I often feel kind of trapped by his neediness, but I'm learning to plan my days better and to do a better job of self-evaluation of my thoughts and reactions. S-Boogie's behavior is still a big source of stress, but Master Fob and I are searching for solutions. Getting to bed at a reasonable hour and going walking several times a week are proving surprisingly helpful. I still haven't made

Today we're happy

Well, I watched myself on camera and I did not die. I sound a lot like my sister, I think. I also didn't look at the camera much, but it was hard to tell where to look when they were filming. I was also relieved that our apartment didn't look too much like a dank little starving student hole (it's really not that bad, but it's kind of small and brown). Overall, I thought both segments were well done and that it was good coverage of this issue. I'm sure the Evergreen bit will be a little controversial--their position is hotly debated among gay Mormons. I like that she ended with words from Dr. Beckstead about how the important thing is to have realistic expectations going into a relationship and to explore all options. One area of emphasis that I didn't like particularly was the fact that people keep focusing on the fact that we "struggle sometimes with intimacy". Um, which married couples out there don't? Sexual intimacy is a hard thing for partner

15 more minutes of fame

Get your Tivo or your VCR ready: tomorrow night we're going to be on Fox 13 News at 9. I'm really getting nervous about this. We haven't seen the finished segment, but the taping did go well. The reporter who interviewed us was really nice and seemed genuinely interested in our story. I'm pretty sure it will be a positive segment, especially since she mentioned that already interviewed a man who tried marriage and didn't have it work out well (our section is part of a series about mixed-orientation marriages). I just hope that I didn't mumble too much or that I don't sound totally dopey. I sometimes feel a little uncomfortable because I don't think we have as much drama as people would like us to have. It's a pretty basic story; most of the turmoil has happened on the inside. But, I think that's also part of our point: we're normal people living fairly normal lives. I just hope that comes across on the television.

Happy Birthday Master Fob!

So I feel a little sad that Absent-minded Secretary wrote a better post about my husband than I did, but that doesn't mean I don't love him. He's pretty spectacular. Like for instance, I'm about to head out the door for my morning walk, and even though I know he'd rather sleep in, he's taking care of the other people in our house who have yet to learn the joys of sleeping past 7 AM. Thanks dear! I love you--I'll let you sleep in tomorrow. Happy, Happy Birthday!

The Bitter and the Sweet

My mom still likes chuckle about the fact that when I was four I announced one day "I don't ever want to get married and have babies--it's too much work!". Well, here I am, married and having babies, and it is a lot of work. There are a lot of days where I step back and can't believe that this is my life. I never really thought much about getting married while I was growing up. I found my journal from junior high, and in it I mused often about living alone on a remote island in Alaska studying whale migration patterns. I never babysat as a teenager and generally didn't like little kids very much. The honest truth is that I still only really like kids in small doses and am not a big fan of them, especially the ones who aren't related to me. Matrimony and maternalness weren't really part of my dreams as a youth. I think that part of this aversion to marriage was a defensive strategy; I've known since I was quite young that I'm not the type of per


It's 3:15 and both kids are sleeping in their beds. Now what do I do with myself? Maybe I should work on my thesis...Or maybe I should make some hot cocoa and read a book...

Gimme a Break

Once upon a time a woman gave birth to a darling baby girl. This little girl took nearly a year to sleep through the night, but still gave her mother a rest during the day by napping at regular intervals. By the time she reached eighteen months old, she spent several hours napping every afternoon, during which time her mother could enjoy surfing the internet and eating chocolate with wild abandon. This blissful pattern continued for over a year, until one day this little girl decided she was done with naps. Perhaps this was partly due to the influence of a wily little brother who has nothing but contempt for daytime sleep, but perhaps it was just an entirely original idea. These days a typical afternoon goes something like this: 2:00 Stories are read and S-Boogie is deposited in her bed for a nap. Mommy goes into her bedroom to nurse Little Dude and read. 2:30 Little Dude, now sound asleep, is placed in his crib. S-Boogie is reminded that it is nap time, not singing/humming/monologuing

Week in Review

I went walking three times this week. Normally my friend can go Monday, Tuesday and Friday, but she couldn't make it this week on Tuesday. I did get up by myself and go Wednesday. I don't know if I'm going to burn a lot of calories, but having someone to talk to is doing a lot of good for my psyche. So is getting up and moving before I get kicked out of bed by the babies. I hope I can keep this up even when the weather gets colder. S-Boogie is probably going to end up being Supergirl again this year. I realized a few days ago that we could just buy her a yellow sweatshirt and put black stripes on it with tape, but plain yellow sweatshirts are impossible to find. So are bee antennae. I'm a lame mom for waiting until the last minute to find a costume. I've also realized that 90 percent of the girl costumes out there are princess outfits. Why are princesses the only choices for girls these days? The other day at the toy store a mom was surprised that S-Boogie was enjoy

Time Slips Away

Little Dude is five months old today! I can't believe how quickly the last few months have flown by. He's suddenly not a little infant but a chubby, smiling baby. He has really discovered the power of a smile and will anxiously wait for people to look at him so he can grin back. This month he also found his voice and will try and "talk" to you when he's in a good mood. Two other milestones he's reached this month are rolling from his back to his front and reaching out to grab things. He loves going to playgroup with us because he can watch the other kids and I can tell he is anxious to get down on the floor and play with them. He'll sit on my lap and flap his arms and legs and coo with delight. Little Dude is still somewhat cranky, but we're learning how to live with each other and how to help him be happy. We started giving S-Boogie solid food at five months, but I'm willing to wait until six with this guy. He doesn't sit up very well yet in t

Boogie Woogie

I fear that I too often focus on the negative in my relationship with my children. This year with S-Boogie has been particularly difficult for both us. I've either been uncomfortably pregnant, recovering from having a baby, or just plain stressed out by life to really want to deal with a challenging toddler. And she certainly can be pretty challenging; this is a child who can melt into a crying puddle when you give her the wrong color of cup or who can argue with you about whether the sun is awake or not. But, she really does have so many good qualities. Some days it feels like they only occasionally peep out between the clouds like rays of sunshine, but I'm glad when they do. For instance, she is incredibly creative. Tonight she had a group of about five or six long Duplos. First she made them into a piano and hummed a little tune; then they became a flute; then rhythm sticks; then a car; then an airplane so we could come to Seattle. All that from five blocks. Then she wanted

Uh Oh...

Halloween is next Tuesday and S-Boogie doesn't have a costume yet. We did finally get a pumpkin today, so maybe we'll get a jack-o-lantern carved before then. Master Fob's birthday is next Friday and I don't know what to get him. Well, besides a better paying job, a full scholarship, or a publisher for his novels. Sigh...

Just pray I don't have food stuck in my teeth

Several years ago Master Fob decided to write a personal essay for a class. After it got a positive reception we decided to publish it. Both of us decided that it would be a good idea to put our names in it rather than leaving it simply as "anonymous". Part of the point of the essay was to emphasize that there are real people behind the story and that we have no shame in our decisions. Then the nice reporter from the Trib wanted to know if we'd be willing to have our pictures in the paper, because you can't have a very good newspaper story with just pseudonyms. Now we've had several offers to appear on TV and documentaries. Last week I answered the phone expecting to hear the same annoying telemarketer who calls us several times a day. Instead I was greeted by an enthusiastic, official-sounding woman who introduced herself as a reporter from Fox 13 (just you watch the best!) in Salt Lake. She'd seen the article in the Tribune and wanted to know if we would par

Small Steps

After dinner tonight we had some time to kill, and it was actually not raining outside (today was a beautiful fall day) so I gave in to S-Boogie's pleas to go outside to the playground. I'm not very good at being socially forward, but I'm starting to make some friends here with the other parents and I'm really enjoying being back in an environment where there are so many people in the same situation. Tonight another family that I know from my ward was outside and so I started talking with them a bit. I actually know C (not sure if she wants her real name on the web) from being in the same singles ward the summer before I got married, and we've conversed quite a few times since I moved here. Tonight we chatted about how hard it is to live on student income (AKA nada) and how hard it can be living with two little kids, especially when your husband is gone so often for school and work. For some reason it really made me feel better to have someone else say "yeah, y