Wednesday, July 28, 2010

No, mommy, don't get up!

Sometimes I wish I didn't have to go to work. Last night was a rough one, with Zoe up and down due to some nasty congestion (allergies) all night (I hate having to vacuum her nose with the nasal aspirator, but it seems to help - screaming and all). So when I had to get up for an early meeting this morning, I was already pretty tired and wishing I could stay in bed for 5 more minutes. Or hours. JJ was snuggling me when I started getting up and he threw himself across me trying to pin me to the bed saying "Mommy! Don't get up! Stay and snuggle me!"

Sigh. Some days....

Monday, July 26, 2010

Cashmere and Water Babies

This weekend we got a chance to visit our good friends, Joanie and Mark (well, Mark had to work, so we got to visit Joanie), who have both a salt water pool and a horse - aka, toddler and baby heaven. JJ was completely entranced by Cashmere, their beautiful mare, who permitted JJ to pet her nose and give her carrots. He has now renamed his toy horse from Coco to Cashmere and spent the next day feeding carrots to it. He also insisted on taking it to bed (a high honor, previously only afforded to his beanie baby alligator and Siamese cat).

Zoe on the other hand was all about the pool. When JJ was her age (7 months) we took him to visit Joanie and Mark and took him out in the pool and he FREAKED. Zoe however was apparently born to water. She thought it was the BEST thing ever, laughing and cooing and generally living it up. JJ refused to get in the pool proper, opting to dabble about in the spa. I think we need to get some swimming lessons for these two, pronto - for Zoe because she will love love love it and for JJ to help him get over his fear.

The adults got to enjoy good conversation, hanging out in the pool and yummy food. All in all a wonderful weekend :)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Can't Live Without It: Trixie Tracker

Product: Trixie Tracker (

What is it: A website service that lets you record data about your child and detect patterns in that data over time. For example, you can record sleep times and use it to see patterns in sleep (so you know the best time to put them down for a nap, try to schedule a hair appt, etc.)
The creator, Ben MacNeill, uses the phrase "Data Driven Parenting" to describe the use of Trixie Tracker. It describes our exact approach to child rearing - that is, observe the child, look for patterns in behavior, then use that information to minimize conflict and maximize enjoyment for everyone (parents included). This program has really given me peace of mind: from knowing when the optimal time to put my daughter down for a nap is to being able to detect an ear infection before it even shows up (because we had a big nursing spike).

Cost: $8/month, $14.95/3 months, $24.95/6months

Why I Can't Live Without It: When you are sleep deprived and can't even remember if *you* had a shower this morning, let alone when you last changed a diaper, this tool is a lifesaver. And when you start tearing your hair out because you swear that the child is napping less and less, this tool can tell you whether that's true or just low blood sugar talking. And when the dr. asks you "so, how long is the baby sleeping/nursing? and how many diapers does the baby go through every day?" you can smugly tell them the answer (with graphs if you like!).

Monday, July 19, 2010

Zummer Klaus

Last year we held our first Christmas in July which was a BIG hit, so we decided to make it a family tradition and do it again this year. Since we're still feeling our way through what this holiday should be like, we made a few additions this year:
  • We decided that the message for the kids would be that we wanted to remember that God gives us gifts every day not just once a year at Christmas, so this was a holiday to help us remember and be thankful for those gifts.
  • We decided that Santa Claus has a summer counter part - Zummer Klaus - and that he brings 1 present for the Summer Christmas.
  • We decided that Zummer Klaus put presents by your shoes, instead of a stocking.
I told JJ about Zummer Klaus then told him "but I don't know what he looks like or how he gets around. Do you know?" He said he did! So, here's the specs on Zummer Klaus according to JJ:
  • Size: Large. Specifically tall and fat.
  • Hair: Orange. And all over his body. (very hairy)
  • Eyes: Purple
  • Mode of dress: Flip flops and red shorts. Nothing else.
  • Mode of transportation: A magic airplane
  • How he gets into your house: Through the bathtub faucet.
  • Where does he live: In a swimming pool
I never would've known that Zummer Klaus was a large hairy carrot top dressed in red shorts and flip flops lazing around the pool, with the ability to travel through water pipes. Good thing JJ was in the know - we put out shoes out by the bath tub and wouldn't you know it? He found them just fine (and without tracking water all over the house) ;)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Up on her knees - uh oh!

So, as solids have been progressing, I knew that it wouldn't be long before we started seeing signs of Zoe wanting to crawl. She's all over the rolling thing - she can get just about anywhere she wants to get rolling. In fact, we've entered the WWF-stage of diaper changes (you'd think doing a take down and pin on a 6.5 month old would be fairly easy - guess I need to start hitting the gym!)
But today she actually got up on her knees for a minute. Oh dear....crawling won't be far behind.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Empathy for toes

JJ is an exceptionally bright child, but he is also very empathic. I've been told that he will often offer comfort to crying children in his classroom, and I've observed how concerned he gets when his sister cries or when John or I hurt ourselves (stump our toes, etc.) always wanting to "kiss it!" He's pretty convinced that any amount of physical pain can be overcome with a carefully applied kiss - and in extreme cases, a band aid.

However, his little thoughtfulnesses continue to warm me. Yesterday I was doing some stretching before bed and explaining to him what I was doing (If I move like this, I can feel it here). I was doing the classic reach-forward-grab-your-toes hamstring stretch, minus the actual ability to grab my toes because my hamstrings are REALLY tight. I told him "And now I'm going to try to grab my toes. I can't ever seem to get them though." He got a very concerned look on his face, and quickly scrambled off the bed to land on the floor next to my feet. He reached forward and promptly grabbed my toes saying "Don't worry Mommy. I got your toes."

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Zoe has discovered the joy of blowing raspberries. A lot. So much so, that playing with her has turned into a first-five-rows-at-Sea-World event. Somebody hand me a towel.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Chatty chatty chatty

I should've known when Grandma got her a toy cell phone, that it wouldn't be long before she started talking our ears off. And, true to form, we've got dada as one of our first words :) Ah Zoe, such a daddy's girl! Of course it's all part of the whole ga ga ba baba ga eeeeeeeeeeee! at the loudest possible volume that she graces us with, but it's in there nonetheless.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Sing the Zoe song

Riding into work today, I ask JJ "Should we sing a song?" "Yes mommy!" he replies quickly. "OK, what song should we sing?" "Sing the Zoe song?"

The what?

John and I walk around the house making up silly songs for the kids all the time (Like "Zo Zo ZoZo bean she's a cutie pie" to the tune of Row Row Row Your Boat). So I sing one of the Zoe songs.

"Ok honey, what song next?" "Helicopter song!"


SO, now, I don't know ANY helicopter songs. After a little probing, I find out he wants me to make up a song about a helicopter and sing it. So I did. And he loved it. I'd like to say it was inspired, fabulous and really entertaining. But I don't like to lie.