Friday, August 31, 2012


When Benjamin was younger I always sang while I rocked him. I figured it was mostly for me, but whatever works. Lately I have only been singing to him when he is really fussy or having trouble falling asleep, and lately I recognize it actually is for both of us, he does respond to it and it passes the time for me. I sort of have a set line up by this time.

First I sing "Castle on a Cloud" from Les Miserables:

Then I move on to a shortened rendition of "When You Dream" by Barenaked Ladies:

After that, its "Under the Quarter Moon", but I always can only remember the first verse. Sometimes I sing the first verse & chorus ten times in a row, its so relaxing.

Usually I am done by now, and he is asleep, but if not, I will sing Tin Soldier. My rendition is much slower than the original:

There are a couple other songs I occasionally throw in. A slow version of "You are my sunshine", "let it be" by the Beattles, or "Lovely Agnes"

And that pretty much completes my lullaby line up. Do you sing lullabies?

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Benjamin started crawling!!

This morning we got up at 8:30am (actually that was DS/DHs second time up, but as a family we we got up at 8:30, LOL). I fed Benjamin and pumped, and then we sauntered downstairs around 9am to start getting ready for our fantasy football draft. I started my coffee and got signed in on the laptop with Benjamin on the floor by my feet while DH signed in to the desktop in the office. And right there, at 9:15am, right before DH and I were both supposed to be doing something that took a good chunk of our attention, he decided that he wanted the laptop cords, and started crawling!! I told DH so he could come see, then grabbed my camera, moved him back away from the cords, and got this:

OK, so his timing was not great. Ten minutes before DH and I are supposed to have the bulk of our attention on something else and he becomes able to make more trouble than ever! LOL. The draft, which involved a lot of chasing down of baby and last second decision making, went fine. Afterwards we headed out to Target and picked up the baby-proofing basics, then came home and started installing it all (yes.. we are last minute people). We now have outlet covers in, and we have a permanent baby gate at the bottom of the stairs. We still need to do furniture anchoring. 
It is really amazing to see him grow and develop. Crawling is such a huge step! I did not realize how awesome (literally awe inspiring) it would be when he started! Our little man is on the go, he is so proud of himself too. I love it! Also, it is amazing how once he did it one time he was totally on the go and expert! Although - he took a long time to be brave enough to try to move from carpet to wood floor, and still will stop at the edge of the tile! Suddenly he also is way more interested in his rolling toys (so thanks Gma Y for bringing one up for him last weekend!)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Busy Times!

What has been keeping me so busy that I have not taken the time to update you fine folks on the happenings or my latest musings??

Last week was a blur, and short. Thursday afternoon my MIL arrived from STL to spend the weekend with her grandson (and son... and DIL, lol). Anyways, I arrived home on Thursday afternoon to find her, DH, and Benjamin on the porch swing, and Benjamin was covered in chocolate chip cookie. Adorable! That night we went out to eat at Little Angie's, Benjamin woke up in the middle of the meal and demolished a piece of asparagus and pineapple and then insisted on pounding a spoon on the table. Friday MIL and I ran errands - we bought a large chunk of DS's 12m wardrobe, got DHs birthday present, returned some paint that we had been oversold, etc etc. After DH got off work we ate pizza. Later in the evening we watched 'The Vow", which was not as good as I had hoped (not bad either, just not great). Saturday we went to an estate sale, then came home and DH&MIL watched Benjamin while I baked two cakes, then we headed out to my parents for a joint birthday party for DH and my father. It was big, and a ton of fun! I did not get to swim as I had hoped because it thunderstormed, but still a blast! Sunday we headed down to the Bayfront Art Festival, it was so beautiful out, and Bayfront is (shockingly) right on the Bay. The water was sparkling blue, the breeze was cool, the art was interesting. We watched a boat leave under the Aeriel Lift Bridge. It was so perfect!! In the evening we gave DS spaghetti which was a lot of fun, and MIL worked on making us curtains.

Then the work week began (MIL went home), which passed really quickly. Monday night was kind of recovery from a fun but busy weekend. Tuesday I had book club. While I was out DH failed at putting DS to bed, DS came as close to crawling as he has been (moved his back legs some, hard to explain), and then when I got home DS demonstrated that he was getting active enough to need his crib lowered. For the first time I went in there when he was crying to find that he was pulled up on the rail. While he has been occasionally capable of going from laying on his back to sitting/pulling up, he was not doing it on a regular basis or in his crib, but he does now! Wednesday night we lowered the crib and DH had his fantasy football draft for his Columbus league. Thursday afternoon I went to a volunteer event at work - we cleaned out a flood damaged basement on East Hillside, it was a win all around - the lady got her house cleaned, we felt we had done something good, the company looked good, and we got to go home 45 minutes early. I changed out  my gross clothes and into a cute summer outfit, and squeezed in a trip to the grocery story before picking up DS early, then cooked a from scratch (without a recipe even) healthy dinner that I really enjoyed making and eating!! Tonight we went to my parents house, I finally got that Swim I was craving, we fed DS pizza and greenbeans and enjoyed my family's company.

It has been a very busy but good couple of weeks, wouldn't you say??

And for your viewing pleasure:

Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Negative

You may have or may not have noticed that I don't like to complain too much on this blog. I mean, I occasionally vent, but usually about little things that don't matter. It is almost like the bigger and the worse the issue, the less likely I am to mention it on here. (Don't be worried, there is not some huge scary negative issue I have been hiding from you, I just would like to discuss....)

Why is that? I mentioned during the high school reunion post that people don't fully represent themselves online and it made me question how I represent myself and why. And I came to the conclusion I avoid putting to much of the negative out there. Why did it take me weeks and weeks to mention that Benjamin was sleeping poorly? Why haven't I mentioned how Benjamin has been sick from day care a lot, how I am frustrated with my job, and how Benjamin keeps getting me sick? I do not omit these things because I am trying to make my life appear better than it is, or because I prefer bragging. I do it, I think, because I don't want my life to appear worse than it is.

We all have them - those facebook friends whose posts are constant complaints. Or those facebook friends who post negative things about something we are jealous of. How often did I despise parents who posted about their baby's poor sleep because I would do anything to have a baby who slept poorly (as opposed to not being able to get pregnant)? I don't post the negative as much because I don't want to give the impression that I am unhappy with my life, because despite any difficulties, I really love my life! Also, I don't want something, like the fact that I am frequently frustrated at my job, to become a "thing", you know, like a basic fact about me. "Oh that's Amanda, she has a 7m old son, lives in her hometown, and hates her job". I don't hate my job, hate is way too strong of a word, but it would easily come to that simplification when people are gossiping, or trying to remember what to ask me about. I would HATE it if I ran into someone I had not talked to in awhile and they asked me "so is your job any better?" I don't want to give people the opportunity to remember that negative thing about me when it really is such a minor part of my life.

So that said, for the sake of realism, I just want to get all of these things out in the open.
(1) Benjamin's sleep has been terrible. And therefore my sleep has been terrible. I had been counting it a good night if I missed seeing an hour on the clock (i.e. If I saw 12 something, 1 something, 3 something, 4 something, and 5 something, but did not see 2 something). Well, since then it has gotten worse for two reasons. First of all, my night time cognition is at an all time low so I keep having issues actually knowing what times I am up and what I am dreaming and reading the clock when I am technically "up". Two nights ago I woke up, thought it was 2:30am and went to feed him, finished feeding him and looked at the clock and it was 12:45pm. There is another night where I spent extra time up trying to take care of him because I was "sleep walking" sort of and thought I was helping put other people's baby's to sleep. Last night in a sleep deprived stupor I conflated his breathing with rows of a spreadsheet from work. So that makes it harder to really even know how good or bad of a night it was. Second of all, it has gotten worse because he has been sick the last three nights. Occasional but ugly coughing and very difficult to lay down (he wants to be held all night). So sleep has been pretty horrible. BUT as I mentioned before, I am still functional during the day, and I still am choosing to have adult recreational and productive time rather than going to bed earlier, so life goes on.

(2) Benjamin has been sick a lot. He has been in daycare for 8weeks now and probably been out 7 days already. Almost once a week. Fever. Pink eye. Vaccines. And right now he is sick as I mentioned, with a cough and runny nose and probably other symptoms he can't tell us about, but he will still be at daycare tomorrow. I can't really stay home from work, so DH has been picking up the slack, and I don't know how we would manage without the help from my parents and family who have been great at taking him for his second days out (always seems he has to be out of daycare two days at a time, once when he is actually feeling sick and once when daycare thinks he is still contagious).

(3) The reason I have not been able to stay home with him is because my employer has HR policies, particularly PTO policies, that are not even remotely family friendly. The worst offender in my opinion is the policy that if I have more than 3 days in a rolling calendar year where I use unplanned PTO (for any reason) - a fourth day where I am sick, or baby is sick, or the weather is bad, or my car breaks down, or anything, - and I will get written up at work, negatively affecting my possibility for raises and promotions. It does not matter if I am using my sick time, I am not allowed to be sick really, and it sucks.

(4) Also I frequently run into frustrating circumstances in my job where no one knows what is going on, or things are broken and no one cares, and they probably dont care because we are cheaper to hire than the people who could actually fix the problems.

(5) And because baby has been sick, I have been sick. Right now I have a headache, sore throat, sore lymphnodes, cough, and stuffed sinuses. Fun. I have had headaches (migraines really) the last three days. (hormonal?). It blows.

OK. Thats all of the negative I think!! Despite everything I said above, I love my life. I wake up in the morning to an adorable, usually smiling baby. I see the beautiful lake. I eat dinner with my loving family, and I watch west wing. What's not to love?

Sunday, August 5, 2012

7 Months Old!

Today Benjamin turned 7 months old! How time flies! I feel like I just posted his six-month pictures (maybe that is because they were two weeks late). He is growing again! Not that he stopped, but he had slowed for sure and I think it is another spurt starting. His hair is also growing like crazy! Hard to tell in the pics, but he has quite a bit on top and in the back now. He is still not mobile, but he is SO close. He is so strong, he just can't figure out the mechanics. If you sit on the floor with him he tries to climb you, but he can't crawl. He gets up on his knees and even on his feet holding onto you. He turns in circles like a champ. If he is sitting he can lean forward and sort of go on all fours and resit in a position that might be nearer his goal... but no he is still really not mobile.

Sleep is still a mess. He occasionally has better nights but most nights he is awake often. Not necessarily to eat even, just because. Twice now he has tried to have a little party around 4am (ie been awake and happy and wanting to play). I had really thought the switch to the crib was helping, but that was just a dream. I honestly am not entirely sure how I continue to function with the lack of sleep I have been experiencing, but I do, so I guess its OK. I can sleep again when I am dead (or when he goes to college...). If I went to bed earlier I could get more sleep, but I just can't get myself to forgo the hour or two of recreation or productivity after he went to bed.

He takes his bath like a big boy now, without a baby tub, just sitting in the bottom of the bathtub! We got an elmo bath mat so he does not slip and slide, but we still need to get a spout cover so he won't his his head! He likes to try and undo the drain cover, but the way it works I think it will be a LONG time before he figures it out. I bought him a toy for the pool, but it turns out it does not float (my concentration was on it being easy to clean), so now its a bath toy since the bath is shallow enough for it. (I am still looking for a floating baby toy that is easy to clean if you have one to recommend!!)

I am sure there are other new developments, but I cannot think of them right now. He is still pretty much awesome, and we love him very much! Now for some of the adorableness --