Saturday, March 29, 2008

Instead of hunting eggs, we searched for spring. No luck.

Your typical Easter morning view, huh?

Oh, and your typical Easter morning snow man. He tastes like sadness, apparently.

And might need a hug or a whack in the facebody

No? No freaking Easter blizzard where you live? Oh. Well screw you then.

How about this? Was your toddler a little jerk on Easter? Because ours was. Greedy McGrabbyson was, apparently, expecting a Christmas-like show of gifts and was totally disappointed with his baskets of trinkets. He didn't even really play with anything until he made sure there were no more presents. And, okay, his gifts were a bit odd. Nothing to do with Easter really, or even spring. No candy, either (because he's only 21 months old, and I have lost count of how many BAGS of Cadbury mini eggs I have eaten since February. BAGS, I tell you). But still, it's always nice to wake up on a random Sunday and hear that some giant rabbit, who can apparently walk upright, use his thumbs, and resist the urge to crap pellets all over your floor, snuck into your house while you were sleeping and hid toys for you, right? Maybe he was crabby because he peed through his "Chicks Dig Me" Easter jammies and we put him in some footie pajamas that fit him like a fleece body condom.

The Easter Bunny hid this bubble-blowing lawn mower (which, seriously, he thought Harry could use outside because it's nearly April for crying out loud) in our room, hoping to buy us a few more minutes of sleep. He also left the box, thinking Harry may want to play with it. All Harry wanted to do, though, was look in the box for "Mo' ho ho ho" and stain our carpet with bubble soap. There was a cute moment when he pushed the lawn mover into his room and noticed it was blowing bubbles-- he came running back to use screaming "Bubbleth!"

Look, he had his hands on his hips as if to say, "I ran all the way down here for that?" as he inspected his first basket.

When he saw Clifford, he started to be marginally more okay with the day

Once Ben showed him how to work the helicopter, Harry was a big fan of his new man. We lost Mega Blocks man a while ago, and it's been rough.

He found his other basket, which the Bunny hid in his house, sneaky bunny. He was slightly mollified by this discovery, as the basket contained slighty bigger toys (that is, toys that took up more sapce-- still cheap as hell) Also? Harry's house is really dirty. Like, needs to be vacuumed. Actually what it needs to be is moved the hell out of our living room. There was a Mr. Potato Head in this basket, and Harry loves him, especially if his arms are above his ears. He loves Mr. Pot Head so much that he diapers him.

"What do you mean you smell poop? Did you ever think it's Dada? Back off, lady. I'm making art."

Friday, March 28, 2008

Bedtime Snack

Still Winter

It keeps snowing and melting and snowing and melting and snowing and melting again. We made a snowman on Easter, that's how dire our situation is.

So we've been spending our time finger painting in the bathtub and freezing our faces off at the zoo, where Harry loved the monkey house. A chimp who was sitting high up in a tree pooped, and Harry delightedly watch the poop rain down on the floor of the exhibit and screamed, "Poop! Monkey! Poop! Mess!" It was the highlight of his trip-- that and the owl. Okay, who taught him what an owl is? Who taught him what it says? Not me, that's for sure. I am thinking the TV babysitter?

When I came downstairs and saw this, I said, "Oh my god, Ben. I have to go get my camera. Harry's asleep!!" Ben said "Wow. And you're getting a PhD with those amazing powers of observation." And I was all "Don't forget my mad research skillz,"

This was totally gross. I was practically stepping in pony poop the whole time.

Edited to Add:
OH MY GOD! Right after I clicked "publish" the doorbell rang, and I thought it was FedEx with our Combi Connection infant seat (which, according to the confirmation email I've been stalking is supposed to come today), but it was UPS with our Combi Twin Savvy double stroller!!!! Thanks Mom and Dad!! (And I wasn't expecting it to come so soon because my dad called the other day and told me he had to re-order it because he accidentally ordered 36 of them the first time, and luckily the online vendor did not have 36 in stock. And what the hell would Ben and I have done with 36 of them on our front porch?)
Edited Again to Also Add:
Okay, now this is getting weird. I just hit "publish" again, and the doorbell immediately rang, and it was totally our infant seat! Yay! And if those deliveries woke Harry up, I am going to cry.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Does your toddler hoard things?

Because ours does. He's a major hoarder. At Little Gym, he spends ball time gathering balls and placing them at my feet. He'll knock kids over to get their balls-- not embarrassing at all, huh? A couple weeks ago, the group activity was to play with scarves, and all Harry did was run around the gym gathering scarves. And by gathering, I mean snatching them out of the hands of other kids and their moms-- he stole from moms, too. At home, he hoards tons of stuff-- spoons one day, wash cloths the next. Socks sometimes or bottles of shampoo. He gets very attached to these objects and calls them Harry's. Another hoardy thing he does? He asks for more even when he's not done with whatever it is he wants more of, mainly cookies and berries, although he did hold his 4 new flip flops to his chest yesterday morning and ask for more of them, too.

The hoarding goes along with the not sharing. At Old Navy the other day, a little girl tried to sit on the bench in the kiddie section, and Harry screamed "Move!" and tried to pull her off. When she put her hand on the bench's rail, he peeled her fingers off one by one. Yeah. We spend a lot of time talking about nice hands these days. Also communism.

We wet to an open gym last Saturday, and he was all about gathering and hiding balloons, balls, tennis rackets, bats. Then other kids would come along, and he would scream "Mine" and dissolve into tears.

This video is funny for the crash landing at the end

In a month or so, Harry is going to have to share his entire world, and we're not sure how that's going to go! He points to the Pack n Play at the foot of our bed (that thing is so effing big-- we have to stand up on he bed and curse to change the channel on the TV) and pretends to cry like a baby (which might be the most annoying noise on earth, although I imagine it will get much more annoying when there's a baby crying, too). If you ask him how to make a baby stop crying, he'll tell you the baby needs to eat. When asked what the baby eats, he replies with a very matter-of-fact "Ham. Cheese." Since those are his favorite foods, maybe this answer bodes well for sharing? Ah well. A girl can dream.

Friday, March 21, 2008

The Mundane

I have had such a lovely spring break. Even though its still cold and snowy here. Snowing, actually. 6-9 inches. I have graded a few a (very few) papers, but for the most part, we've all jut been sleeping in and enjoying the rest. Ben starts teaching a class again next week, and he has to coach at least once a week because his speech team in gearing up for nationals. I teach late once a week, too, so this is really the last quiet time we will enjoy as a family of three.

We really are ready for the baby now. I know I keep saying that, but this time it's true. I spent all day Wednesday buying stuff for my hospital bag-- toiletries (Bath and Body Works has a pretty good sale right now if anyone else is looking for things to make that first post partum shower that much nicer), nursing bras, giant underpants. Also some stretchy clothes I can wear after the baby (because I would rather eat my own arm off than wear maternity cloths post pregnancy, and I cannot stand to buy bigger real clothes. I can only confront the reality of my post baby size in "Small" or "Medium" or even "Large." (And on that note, I bought some Xhilaration pajama pants at Target, and I got a large because I thought I'd appreciate having some soft, baggy pjs for those first few days. And they are tight. In the ass.)) Also, yes gaucho pants are woefully out of style, but Target has them in the swimsuit cover up section, and I am not too proud to say that I got them in 3 colors. So if you see me in them in late April/early May, look the other way. If, however, it is June/July, and I am still sporting them, feel free to stage an intervention.

We are waiting for our car seat and double stroller to arrive in the mail, and we have all of McLovin's things assembled. All we need is the baby. And for the semester to end. Or at least for me to grade this set of papers and the one that coms in on April 9th. (The papers due on May 12th-- the DAY BEFORE MY 30TH BIRTHDAY-- looks like I'm going to be grading those with McLovin (who will have a real name) in tow. Oh and maybe a Bjorn or a sling...

Doesn't he totally just look like he tolerates us?

The whole time he was playing here, he was saying "Mess, mess, mess" under his breath in a happy little voice.

I love this kid so much. He loves the Snack Trap (the worlds best invention) of fish crackers so much. Also lovely? The fact that I have gotten a haircut since this last picture. My first one since SEPTEMBER yikes. I booked a follow up for 8 weeks from now before I even left the salon. Seriously, I am about to be a mom of 2. I do not need mom of 2 hair, know what I mean? Don't need mom hair at all, really. Or mom jeans. Ya'll will tell me if I have mom jeans, right?? Also, I am excited for a time when my lap will be smaller, and you wont see me spilling out on either side of Harry. Or maybe that'll happen when Harry is bigger...

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Harry and His Berries

I've read that it's normal for toddlers to have weird eating habits, and I am super laid back about what Harry eats. All you want is string cheese and goldfish crackers today (like the WHOLE DAY)? Okay. Hopefully tomorrow you'll want broccoli and apples or something like that. Don't get me wrong, we offer a fruit, a veggie, a starch, and a protein at every meal, and snacks always have fruit and veggies. The kid only drinks water or milk (and the occasional breakfast cup of OJ), and it's not like we give him jelly beans and Pepsi or anything like that. But still, we're cool with his weird cravings (I mean, who am I to talk about weird cravings? I ate a bag of Cheetos in like 3 days, and I typically don't like Cheetos at all. I seriously cannot remember the last time I ate Cheetos, unless it was at my Grandma Bette's house when I was little-- and she always served them in a Dixie cup, how cute is that?)

So, lately, the kid has a berry big problem with berries. We go through at least one quart each of blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries a week and at least a pound of strawberries. He's an addict.  He joneses for berries throughout the day and runs to the fridge to try to pry it open and get them.  Or he comes to me with the plastic strawberries from his kitchen set in his mouth and asks for "Mmmmm," or says "Eat. Yeah. Eat."
Cute though with a berry mustache. Not so cute? Scrubbing berries out of his clothes. Sorry McLovin, you might have some stained collars.

He's just saying bye to Ben in these pictures. Harry's become berry selective with kisses. He likes to be asked for one but he rarely delivers.

Although this morning, when Ben said he was leaving, Harry replied, "No thank you. More."
We asked him what he wanted more of, and he said, "More Dada." How melty is that?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Village Toddler

Oh my god. And you thought Build A Bear was just a silly waste of money. Clearly, it is as fun for adults as it is for kiddies. The trick is to make your toddler wear his bear's clothes and accessories. Without an undershirt.

Bonus points if you can get him to dance.

Add a teeny Luxor helmet, and you're golden. A funny story about this helmet. The other night while we were cleaning his closet, Harry put the table part of his Chicco activity table in top of a box of diapers and climbed up on it, pretending it was a bus. Of course, he toppled off of this precarious perch and bumped his head. He cried a little, and we told him not to climb up there again because he could hurt his head again. He ran to his toy box, dug out this helmet, put it on, and climbed back up-- who could argue with that logic??

He's going to be so mortified by all of this someday.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Stop the Insanity

There is a massive Pack n Play in our bedroom, and a Fisher Prce Rain Forest bouncey chair is wedged up on my dresser. I have unwrapped my new Boppy and lovingly arranged all of the baby blankets, small clothes, itty bitty hats, and teeny socks I bought last weekend. We finally ordered our car seat (in green when I meant to order red, but I am coming to terms). Ben remodeled the closet in Harry's room, adding 2 extra hanging bars and 2 shelves, and we finally hung pictures on his wall. This means that since Harry is still sleeping in the crib, there's a painted canvas with the baby's name above is head, which is kind of weird. We are putting giant letters that spell Harry on the wall above the fire truck. Ben painted them bright red (fire engine red, you could say), but we're dreading the actual hanging process because they all have hook-holes at different levels, and we don't know how we are going to make a straight line happen. I have even picked out birth announcements and just need to, you know, take a picture of the baby and record his vitals. We bought breast pads and nipple cream, and I almost hyperventilated with excitement when I learned that Victoria's Secret makes nursing bras!!!!! VICTORIA'S SECRET. NURSING BRAS. Could anything be better than that?

In other words, we're FREAKING OUT.

Finishing my dissertation allowed me to finally embrace the fact that I am having a baby-- and I am so damn excited about him I can barely stand it. Behold: photographic evidence of my nesting frenzy.

Here's a super small Zutano outfit I got for him to wear home from the hospital. It's seriously teeny. I also got a ridiculously small sleeper from Gymboree because I remember tiny Harry was dwarfed by newborn clothes. In case you're wondering, he'll wear a white onesie underneath and blue striped socks and a blue striped hat. Phew. Glad that's all planned.

Oh yeah-- while I was shopping for the above adorable outfit, I saw this house and decided Harry must have it immediately because I have clearly lost all common sense. I never did have a clear grasp of spatial relationships or solid geometry, so I was surprised that it didn't fit anywhere but the living room. Just what every living room needs, huh? Ben was/is so annoyed. Mainly because it obscures his Wii playing angles.

You probably see this picture and think, Oh, Sarah washed some of Harry's old blankets. No. If only that were the case. I decided this baby needed his own color pallet (crazy), so instead of the blue, red, and yellow stuff we had with Harry, I got all pastel blue, mint green, and white stuff. Somebody take away my debit card.

This is the inside of Harry's house at the end of the day-- funny, huh? He spent a long time dragging all that stuff in there. I especially enjoy the fridge door from his kitchen. Yesterday, he added Polar Bear, Polar Bear What Do You Hear and a turkey baster.

As soon as it's above freezing in Wisconsin, it's ice cream season. Harry approves.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Man Oh Man

He's a huge fan of this garbage truck, especially when it's got his man inside. He has become really attached to his little Mega Blocks man, whom he calls man and wants to take everywhere we go, which is unfortunate because man is very easy to lose, and to replace him, I have to buy nother Mega Bocks dump truck, and seriously, how many of those does one kid need? Because I think we're up to like 15. Speaking of-- beware the Ides of March (and maybe take a page from my high school Latin Club-- yeah, I was that kind of cool-- and have Little Caesar's for dinner).

Gratutitous toe shot. Sorry.

Do these look dangerous to anyone else?

Friday, March 14, 2008

Church Harry

I generally have nothing bad to say about our health insurance. Indeed, besides the vast amounts of knowledge (and really I hope the sarcasm is coming through here) it is the best benefit of my job. I am in a TA union, which, in and of itself is really cool (we even went on strike my first Spring here), and it has negotiated for some pretty stellar health benefits. We have no co-pays; our monthly premiums are so low you wouldn't believe me if I told you what we paid (we spend more on diapers), and we have access to a huge varity of specialists, dentists, and eye doctors, all for free. Ridiculous health benefits. The one and only bad thing is that in the last trimester of pregnancy, I am not allowed to travel more than 30 miles outside my town-- if I go into labor outside a 30-mile radius, the insurance company won't pay for the birth. Sucky, huh? If I stay put, though, the insurance company pays the whole tab, including all the mind and body numbing drugs I can handle.

So, I had to miss this adorable little baby's christening last weekend. Harry and Ben went, though, and they had a blast.

Ben and his parents hung out with Harry and Max during the church service, because Harry and Max are not necessarily sit-through-church material

More like play crazy material

They made it for the actual business of blessing babies, though

And here they are in action:

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Happy Birthday, Ben!

Today is Ben's 29th birthday, and as you can see from the picture above, Harry spent a good part of his afternoon yesterday crafting a masterpiece of a birthday gift. I had intended to turn him loose in J Crew and let him pick out some "hots" (socks) for Daddy, but I was too tired to leave the house after his nap yesterday, so art projects had to suffice. And Ben liked the art better anyway, mainly because he didn't get the bill for it later.

You can't totally see it in this picture, but Harry is clutching his new obsession-- a monkey-shaped straw cup that his grandma got him. It dribbles a little when tipped, so he can only use it at the table, but this means that whenever he is sitting at or near a table, he demands "Monkey. Wawa. Ass. Harry's. Yep. Thank You" (ass means ice). If he only had a verb. Actually, he grabbed my face with both his hands this morning and screamed "Move!" so I guess he does have a verb. (And also? How rude is that-- we were laying on MY pillow, for goodness sake).

Art wasn't necessarily the more relaxing gift choice, however, as we started off with finger paints (Which is why Harry has no shirt on. Thanks, Sarah, for the no shirt inspiration), and finger paints make Harry very anxious. Mommy, too. He doesn't really like the way they feel on his fat little fingers, and I am afraid that they are not as washable as the package claims. He did end up making a painting for Ben, though, because he would not let me tear the "markie" drawings out of his sketchbook. They were, you see, "Harry's" which-- besides "mine"-- is all the kid says these days.

He was so messy after his creations that I thought I'd give him a quick bath and let him play with the bathtub crayons my dad sent. This would have been a great idea, but he pooped in the tub. Then, when he was sitting happily on a towel playing while I cleaned the tub, I noticed that he was having fun with his brown crayon. Only it wasn't a crayon. Then when I was getting him dressed, he peed in his art box. Awesome. So, yeah, we should have gone to the mall.

Ben and I started telling Harry about how, after his baby brother comes, he'll get to share all of his stuff with his little brother, and Harry laughed and laughed, like this was the funniest thing he had ever heard-- funnier even than sneezes, which blow his mind with their hilarity. Sharing doesn't go well with the "Harry's" phase he's entered into, so we took the advice of a sibling book we snagged at the library and bought a bunch of little gifts to have on hand for Harry, just in case the baby gets gifts.

He was so upset this morning to discover that the big present in the cool fun bag was for Ben. He kept saying, "Ho ho ho Harry's." We tried to tell him that he'll get to play Wii, too, but he's not a delayed gratification kind of guy (and actually it was an XBox 360, which I bought because Wii was totally sold out-- I figured Ben could either keep it OR we could go stand in line at Target on Sunday and wait for a Wii shipment and exchange the XBOX. Luckily for Ben, he found a store that got a shipment TODAY, so he is actually the proud owner of a Wii. And, like me, he's almost 30-- ha!) .

I think the technical term for what I have been doing lately is "nesting," a concept I used to think was ridiculous and sexist, but now think may be accurate, since I have been seized by a desire to buy baby things (blankets mainly and Zutano clothes) since the moment I finished my dissertation. Stay tuned for pictures of THAT craziness. And also of the dissertation, which is 233 pages and still needs a better conclusion but probably won't get one right now because I am facing a stack of undergraduate papers that makes my 233-pager look slim.

Not looking slim? That'd be me. It may be the meal I have added between breakfast and lunch. It might be the fact that Coke is still the only thing that cures my heartburn. Maybe it's the bedtime ice cream cone, or the daily column of Oreos. There is definitely more of me to love, that's for sure.

Anyway, Happy Birthday, Ben! I love you, and I can't wait for our date night to celebrate-- in the meantime, aren't you the luckiest guy ever to have your B-Day on a "Lost" night?!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A Pacifier, Kid? Really?

We've been going through Harry's closet to try to make room for baby stuff (ha!), and we found a big plastic tub of stuff we never really used with Harry. In this tub was a huge stash of pacifiers, most of which were gifts. I did actually buy a pack one day because I thought it might be cool if Harry used something other than me to gnaw on when he needed comfort but wasn't really hungry, but silly me because that never really worked out for him.

This particular pacifier is cool-- it snaps shut when it's dropped so it won't get dirty. I remember we tried to use it between takes at a Sears photo shoot (which was horrible. We actually RETURNED the pictures-- who does that?) when Harry was 10 weeks old, and we were scared of germs.

As you can see, he's using it as more of a cigar than anything else.

Were thinking we should maybe get a dog of some sort because then we could make it wear my pink old lady hat, and our child would get to keep any small shreds of dignity he has left.