Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Grocery Shopping - Who knew?

Who knew it was so hard to do something as simple as grocery shop when you have a baby? Finding time to shop is part of the issue. Having the energy to make a list, check the cupboard, run around the store, lug the groceries back into the house, put them away, that's a whole different story. There is a reason Peapod grocery delivery service exists. There is a need for grocery delivery when you are a mom. Even if you don't take the baby along.

Today, I'm sitting at work, with eight programs open and in the middle of five different things when I notice, "Shoot" (my G rated version), "It's already 4:30. I gotta get to the store." I typically leave work at 4:45, race to the car, road rage home in a hurry -- but I counteract that by driving through the park since it's more scenic... and faster. Then I'm usually 5 minutes late because I have to circle for parking once, unless I get really lucky and find a spot out front.

As I'm finishing things up on my computer, I grab my cell phone to call the nanny and tell her I'll be 10 minutes late, gotta run to the store, does she need anything, etc.? I quickly close out of everything I was working on, click send on one last email, tell the guys that I'll update them on a potential lead once I know more and I'm gone. I get outside, briskly walk -- trot actually- to the car, get in and realize, it's winter. I have to wait to heat up the car. I never wait to heat up the car and I know it isn't good on the engine so I'm trying to train myself early this season to be good to my little honda because she's been good to me. So I try to wait one minute for the clock to turn to 4:42 from 4:41 and... I can't do it. I think I made it 40 seconds and put it in drive.

Vroom, vroom, beep, beep. Seriously? Just turn left already. Hurry up people! Learn how to drive in the city. Don't make me miss this light you turtle! Gas is on the right. Let's go, let's go, let's go. Six blocks later, I pull into the grocery store. "Oops! (G rated version) I forgot my reusable shopping bags. Oh well. There goes the environment." It's 4:50. I park, hustle into the store. Grab a basket. Call Colette to see if she needs anything last minute. Her list is too long for me to get in one quick trip but I tried. Ta ta. Here I go. First on the list, formula. Oh, look! Baby food is on sale. Let's get a few jars, or twenty. Whatever. Wow. This basket is heavy. Hmmm... next on the list. Oh, wait. I have to get dinner for tonight. A roasted chicken and some bread sounds good. I'll grab a cart while I'm by the front door. My arm hurts from all these baby food jars. Gesh. Got a cart... with a crummy wheel/vibrating mis-alignment thing going on. Nice. Eeert, eert, as I whip through the produce aisle. Roasted chickens are $9.99? That can't be right. Oh, that's the turkey breast. I need the chicken. Got it. Eeert, eert, chitty chitty bang bang, fresh baked bread. Italian or French? Italian. Nice. Hot out of the oven. Love it. Chitty chitty. What's next? Chocolate for work so I can feed my cravings. Ziplock bags - the big ones, and pecans for the divinity I'm going to attempt tonight. Okay. Chocolate, might be near the nuts. Let's see. Eeeert, chugga chugga, snickers aren't on sale but kit-kats are. Should I really be doing this? Ah, what the heck. It's the holidays and I need something sweet darn it(again G rated). Okay, so the nuts in the chocolate aisle don't include pecans. Let's try the baking aisle. Yep. There we go. Chortle chortle as I attempt to "spin" the cart around. Ziplock. Two aisles over. Yeah, on sale. Freezer or no freezer? I don't want the vacuum seal. Freezer sounds great. Now to check out. Wow those lines are longggggggg. What's up with checkout line #2....looks empty. "Are you open?" "Yeah, I just opened." "Nice. This is my lucky day." Yada yada. Get behind slow couple leaving the store, dur dur dur, dur dur dur.

Finally, I get into the parking lot.

I attempt to ride the cart out to my car but it's vibrating so violently that I fear for my life so I go back to trotting behind it in my heeled boots clop cloping along. Where did I park? I think I'm one row over. Oh, there it is. Load the bags in the trunk. Great. The chicken bag handle broke already. That will be fun getting into the house. I push the cart into the cart corral, yea ha! Back to the car and vroom vroom home. More road rage, impatience, get out of my way. Okay, there's my street. Slow guy in front of me. Don't take my spot, don't take my spot. What? No spots near the house. Oh wait, no! Someone just pulled into a prime spot right in front of our house! Urg! 5:25. I'm late. I have groceries to carry inside! Have you no heart? Do you even live on this street? Grrrrr... around the block, cut through the alley, try again. Is this really as close as I can get? I'm half a block away. Whatever. It's 5:28. I'm so late. I told the nanny 10 minutes and it's almost 30 now. Go go go. I park quickly, pop the trunk, grab all six grocery bags and the broken bag holding the chicken. Check that the car is locked and click, clacketey clack quickly down the street. I'm just over half way home and I notice the clacking start to slow. These bags are heavy. Must make it home. You can do it! What? Are you flippin' kidding me (super G rated)? You're going to leave now? Why not 30 seconds ago when I was looking for a spot right in front of the door. Urg. No time. Get inside!

Finally, I get to the front door. Do I buzz or find my key? I set everything down, find the key. Unlock the first vestibule door. Hold it open with my hip and my foot. Grab all of the bags and the broken chicken bag. I get inside, climb the five steps, and repeat. Then get to the front door. Try the lock, set it all down again, get out the key, unlock the door. "Sorry I'm late. Of course I parked down the street and when I got ten steps from the front door I noticed a Jeep out front pulling out of the spot directly in front of the door. How aggravating. Have a good night. See you in the morning."

"Hey there Ada. Want to help mommy take the groceries to the kitchen? What? You can't walk yet? Bummer. Soon enough." And I grab all of the handles and the chicken bag and shuffle back into the kitchen with Ada in tow.

And that folks, is what it takes to buy a few items from the store. $56 dollars, 45 minutes, 2 missed parking opportunities, 2 bouts of road rage, getting stuck behind no less than 8 slow people, and an aching arm later, I've got a few items to attempt to make a candy my nana made for us every holiday when we were younger and we haven't had since she passed. All that work and who knows if it will even turn out.

Moral of the story: This thanksgiving, I give thanks for peapod (when I have a $100 order to make it worthwhile), family, attempting to cook, having the access to ready available food at grocery stores, and the freedom to cook as poorly as I do without being jailed for it. I'm hopeful that next year I'll be able to give thanks for patience as I've put that on my Christmas list this year. If you see Santa, let him know.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The new drawer

Awhile back, several months ago now, Grandma DD (my mom) came to visit. She often comes to take care of Ada and, among other things, clean the stove and the refrigerator and fun stuff like that that we no longer care, or have time, to do anymore. So DD was here cleaning and tried to open the top drawer under our kitchen counter. She couldn't open it so what did she do? She pulled with all of her might until it opened, darn it. When it did, she was in for a surprise. It wasn't really a drawer at all. She had pulled off the face plate to what would be a drawer in any normal home, but the developers who remodeled our building failed to install a drawer in the top slot of the cabinet. It's the same in all of the kitchens in our building because they were stock cabinets meant for a bathroom and therefore should have a sink basin that dips into the space a drawer would slide into, thereby making a top drawer unnecessary. In our case, they just covered the cabinet with a granite slab, didn't go to the trouble of installing the missing drawer and said, "whatever, no one will notice."

No one, except my mom.

See my mom is a realtor. She snoops around houses for a living. And she's a practical woman too. You can imagine her surprise to find a "fake" drawer in my kitchen. And you can imagine my surprise upon returning home to find Ada napping and happy and my mom holding on to the face of my cabinet drawer wondering what just happened. Then for the followup reaction, "Rick can totally go to Home Depot and get a drawer for this and you'll have more storage space. You can't just leave it fake. That's silly."

$30, 2 weeks of waiting for the special order drawer, and 5 hours of fiddling with the darn cabinet later, we have a functioning drawer. And we have the drawer for our neighbor too but it's in our hall closet too afraid to come out of the box until Rick has more free time. But now we have a drawer. Which is great and we have a home for our oven mitts and a few trivets. Yippee! I'm sure our resale value went up at least $5 for that effort right? Sure.

And the drawer is great, except for a tiny, tiny, itsy, bitsy problem. Rick had to install a new drawer slide too. The new one is way better than all of the other drawer slides because it is two rollers on the sides instead of one roller in the middle on the bottom of the drawer. It's metal with plastic wheels whereas the rest of the drawers are wood on wood slides with a plastic do-hicky and no wheels, lots of friction. The new one slides really nice and fast now and all of the other drawers are jealous. That's not the problem. The problem is that Ada wants to pull up on all of the drawers so she can stand up, because that's what she does now. And when she climbs from the lower drawers that don't move so easily to this top drawer, well, to be honest, she wipes out. She grabs the handle and Whoop! down she goes. An accident just waiting to happen.
Here's Ada just prior to wipe out.

Moral of the story: You can't plan for everything. Even good intentions for increased resale value can go bad in the tear-filled eyes of a child. She still loves you DD.

Give me a P!

So today, in typical Ada fashion, I was changing her diaper and she was squirming around like a typical 11 month old. She started out on the changing table but got too wiggly so I decided the floor would be safer. In her room we have an alphabet mat made of foam where all the letters of the alphabet link together in interlocking pieces -- it's great as a shock absorber when she falls and looks cool too.

As I went to set her down on the map, she of course wanted to stand up -- it's tough to get her little knees to bend when all she wants to do is stand up. ALL the time. So she's naked, standing up. There is a poopy diaper on the changing table and I'm trying to grab the wipes, put the cloth diaper in the diaper cover while holding her up and what does she do? She pees all over the letter P. While standing mind you. So now I have a poopy diaper, a pee covered P and the surrounding tiles, and a pee covered Ada who now, of course, wants to sit down and start crawling all over so she can spread the wealth of pee to the rest of the letters. Luckily, she was only able to grab her elephant rattle before I was able to wrap her in a cloth diaper haphazardly and briskly walk down the hall the bathroom hoping pee wasn't dripping all through the house as I whisked her off to the sink.

I gave her a quick rinse while fighting to keep her from scorching herself as she found it really fun to play with the faucet knobs. Once she was "clean" which is a relative term and only a temporary state at this age, I toweled her off, again attempted the diaper dance and was able to successfully finagle her into her diaper. I quickly returned her to the far end of her play mat and then removed the peed on P and the elephant rattle and the poopy diaper and the wet diaper from her room. Who knew multitasking was such a prerequisite for being a parent. Whew.

Moral of the story: Don't put a P on the floor. You're just asking for it to be peed on simply for the irony of it all.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Successful Formula!

It worked. Believe it or not--I still have trouble believing it--it worked. Ada is now drinking 100% formula. She graduated from the half and half mix to all formula and it rocks. I nurse her whenever I feel like it. She drinks formula whenever I think she didn't get enough breastmilk. She's happy. I'm happy. Life is beautiful.

I don't have to pump anymore--which by the way is AWESOME! It is so much easier to travel with her and I think I'm getting more sleep now that I'm not up 20 minutes extra each night pumping. I feel like I'm washing less bottles but really it's probably more bottles and less pump stuff. What a relief. And, driving with her is easier too as I can easily whip up a bottle whenever we need it. Very nice. No complaints here. I made it over 10 months strictly nursing and it was a huge sacrifice but worth it. And now I feel great with a little bit of both. She'll be on whole cow's milk soon enough.

Too bad she's back to teething again. Poor little thing. She has 4 teeth and this past few days has been awful with her drooling and screaming and not napping and waking up during the night. And Tylenol isn't even helping. Ug. But, like all things thus far, we'll get through it.

Oh, and I'm also so excited since now that Ada is drinking formula, we can send her to grandma's house for the weekend and not have to worry about if she has enough milk. Perfect for the holidays coming up since we have a few parties to attend and really just don't want to dole out a million dollars for babysitters.

Moral of the story: Weaning your child isn't the worst thing on earth as some people might suggest. It's actually quite freeing, and helps you see how much you've dedicated to your child if you did nurse them. Kinda rewarding.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Kitten Mittens

Winter is officially here. We saw a few snowflakes today and decided it was time to pull out Ada's winter coat. It looked a little big but we thought we'd try it on her anyway. So here it is.

Where's Ada? Okay, so maybe she's not ready for a 24 month coat quite yet. We tried. Maybe next year. Until we grab a proper coat, we'll be using the kitten mittens, matching kitten hat, and many layers of hooded sweatshirts and coats. And we'll be coat shopping tomorrow.

Moral of the story: It's tough to gauge how big a growing baby will be next season, but even tougher for a generous mother-in-law to pass up a sale. Always be thankful for that.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

When panic strikes...

Three time this last week I've had to calm my mom instinct to repress the urge to immediately panic. The first was when Ada was holding on to the side of the bath tub and chewing on the porcelain when she somehow bonked her teeth on the tub edge. She started screaming and upon further evaluation, I noticed she was bleeding a little from her two front teeth. Instant almost-panic. I took a deep breath, checked her teeth again, wiped away the blood, and then took another deep breath. She's fine. Shake it off. No biggie. Crisis averted.

Then I worried that Ada had broken something when she decided to hurl herself off our bed. I was standing right there, between the bed and the closet. I turned for part of a second and she was able to launch herself off the edge of the bed, roll onto the floor and land on top of Rick's shoe with her cheekbone. After a minute of extreme screaming and a few tears, she settled down enough to reveal a red mark on her cheek that later turned into a bruise. Another crisis averted.

And finally, when I went in to get Ada out of bed on Thursday, she was covered with vomit. Not having had her really throw up ever before, I wasn't sure what to do with her. I immediately assumed it was a food allergy and stuck her in the shower with Rick to get cleaned up. A few hours later, our nanny called to say Ada had thrown up all over the couch and wasn't feeling well. Then she remembered one of the kids on Ada's play date had been sick. That led Rick home to stay with Ada for the day and me to make her an appointment with the Dr. Turns out it is just a case of the flu. She'll be fine. We just have to keep her hydrated. She'll be fine.

Moral of the story: Do all you can to prevent your child from getting injured or sick, and remember not to panic if something should happen. It's probably not as bad as you think. Stay calm.

Who needs a pack and play?

So "brilliant me" thought I was so smart to put Ada in a laundry basket to contain her in the kitchen while I checked email. It was like a mini pack and play, yet light and easy to move and maneuver. She was happy and all was well... until she decided to tip it over and fell face first onto the hard kitchen tile. Whoops! Not such a great idea after all. Not such a smarty mommy either.

Moral of the story: Sometimes what might seem like a good plan just isn't. Luckily babies get bumps and bruises and take it in stride. Just try to minimize the damage.

Mom Group Halloween

There have been a lot of requests for more Halloween photos. I posted a few from our first Halloween event. These shots are from our Mom Network at the hospital. They have a Halloween party every year and a bunch of Ada's friends were there. Of course, we tried to take a photo of all of the kids in their adorable costumes. Ada's the Blue Toucan. Here's what happened...

Total Chaos.

Moral of the story: I don't know how Anne Geddes does it but photographing multiple kids at once isn't easy. Be sure to get it all out of your system before they go mobile.

Formula trails take 2

The time came for us to try giving Ada formula again this weekend. Unfortunately, we got into a situation where I went to a wedding and had a good time that included a few chocolate martinis -- for which I needed to pump-n-dump as they say -- and our milk supply dropped to an all-time low. It didn't help that upon returning from the wedding reception and a night out on the town until 2 am like the crazy mom that I am -- in a really short sassy black dress mind you -- I woke up around 5 am to begin a 12 hour bout with the flu and a close relationship praising the porcelain gods. Rick got a head start on the flu during the reception dinner and had to call it an early night. Our house was a sad state Saturday morning and our only saving grace was that my mom had come to stay with us to babysit Ada during the wedding. My poor mom had to listen to Rick and I both get sick, while dealing with a crabby Ada, and exposing herself to all of our cooties. Hopefully she doesn't get the full blown version of the bug we got. It was awful.

So we took every one's advice and mixed Ada's formula 50/50 with breastmilk and it worked like a charm. She guzzled it down the first time. Then this afternoon we tried again and she drank the concoction just fine. Then she had dinner and while lounging on the couch, she started round two of the flu--if you know what we mean. We've become experts in running the couch cushions through the laundry machine at this point.

Moral of the story: 50/50 is the way to go when switching to formula but when buying a couch, make sure the cushions are 100% washable... pretty much the same rule goes for everything you buy if you ever plan to have kids.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Quick Update

We're still here. Just SUPER busy. Ada's crawling and pulling up so I'm spending a lot of time chasing her. And she just got a bout of the flu yesterday so Grandma DD is here playing nurse while Rick and I are off to a wedding today. I have more halloween photos, and surely a bunch more stuff to blog about so try not to get your undies in a bunch. I'm home this weekend and plan to blog soon.

:) AY