Sunday, January 20, 2013

Potty Training Commences

Eh...I've been teetering for awhile.  I had no intention of ever considering potty training until after 2.  And then my 14 month old started holding things, telling me he was dirty, and then when he got his diaper off, he'd run across the room and squat on the floor.  For both kinds.  Gee...thanks.  I have steam cleaned the rug in his bedroom too many times to count. 

SO.  Once that all started happening, we got a potty.  That he hated.  So we got a hand-me-down potty from our friends.  That he tolerated.  But no success.  He did pee on TOP of the hated potty once, but that was as close as we got.  I didn't care, I wasn't pushing it.  I just had them out to talk about and get him accustomed to.  We checked out a potty book from the library.  He loved it.  Still nothing.

This month, I got selected for a "Pull-Ups Party" and sent a party pack.  I was a little annoyed about this since I had changed my mind about wanting to do it, and hadn't invited anyone.  Sigh, alright, fine.  REALLY didn't make a big deal of it, but a few of us gathered over at my friend's house today. 

Lo and behold...Robby peed in the potty tonight.  WOO HOO!  I again wasn't trying too hard, but I took his diaper off, and told him if he peed in the potty, he could have chocolate (a hershey kiss).  Kid is TOTALLY bribe-able with chocolate.  I may have to switch to something smaller, but I'm SO proud of him, and we did a big ole celebration.  And then you got to hear about it.  Ha!  I'll try and not make it a regular occurance. 

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Cooking for Two Diets

Now that I'm back to attempting vegetarianism, I'm back to the challenge of what to cook for dinner in my house.  I get home first, so I cook.  It's just how it is.  (Except last night when I was exhausted, and we weren't home until the same time, and I threw a hissy fit that I didn't want to cook, and Chris made pierogies.  Thanks hun.)  The issue is that my husband is decidedly not a vegetarian.  He doesn't have a problem doing vegetarian meals about 1/2 the time, but the other nights, he'd really prefer to incorporate meat.  That's fine, it's his decision.  Even if it makes things a bit more difficult.

What does that usually mean?  It means that I make meals that have an "optional" meat component.  Stir-fry with meat and tofu on the side, to be added by the respective person.  Taco fixings that you can put whatever in your shell that you prefer.  And sometimes?  I just end up eating the sides.  That option hasn't proved to be a very balanced method for me, though.  It's also time consuming!

For example.  One day this week I did baked chicken, twice-baked potatoes, and at the last moment because I realized that while it had taken forever, it was missing vegetables, green beans.  The chicken and potatoes were pretty compatible, since everything got thrown in the oven together, and I made massive quantities with the ideas that then I wouldn't have to worry about meat the rest of the week.  The chicken's still in the fridge.  :/  May be my fault for cooking other things that were appealing.

One of the hits this week was Shrinking Kitchen's Fragrant Chick Pea Stew.  Just do it.  It is phenomenal   I did use sour cream instead of greek yogurt to top it, but otherwise I followed it exactly.  Amazingly, both Robby and Chris ate it, and ate well, so I had no leftovers!  Boo!  I seriously would have enjoyed leftovers ever day of the week if I could have.  Doubling it next time.

Long and short of it...I need to start planning again.  I am so much less stressed, more on budget, and we eat healthier when I do, but WHINE, WHINE, WHINE.  

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Snow Day

While we were in NYC, our house got hit by a little bit of snow.  Still not enough to be worth much, but enough for us to play in it a bit.  We need to get a sled, but this was barely more than a dusting, so we didn't miss much.

Robby has his own shovel, but found it much more entertaining to use dad's.  Even if he had to keep informing us that it was "Heavy".  That's one of his favorite words at the moment, so no surprise there.

And we may have neglected cleaning off the fire pit, but Robby was quick to remind us that there was snow there that needed to be shoveled.  Sure.  Go for it.

Our middle child, or youngest furry child, or...whatever gets almost as excited as the one that can SAY "snow".  Ok, maybe more excited.  As a puppy, Harper would lay outside in snow drifts until you physically pulled her inside, fearful that she would get frost bite.  Now getting to watch Robby throw snow for her to catch?  It's too adorable.  Chris threw the shovelful above, but Robby was attempting it, as well.  I love snow days, and can't wait for a REAL one soon!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Leaf Diving

How many of you have, literally, dozens of posts sitting in you draft folder that never get published?  No?  Just me?  The issue is that I upload the pictures in clumps and never bother to write words to go along with them.  So, in an effort to clear out some of them, here is an old set of uploaded pictures from early November.  So Robby was 17 months.

I don't remember why I was upset with Chris this day, but I do remember that I was.  And I was annoyed that he spent a long time building a fire, even though I thought that was possibly not a great idea with crazy man running around.  It all worked out fine, but it made me nervous!

This was the first time Robby had seriously played in leaves.  Sure, he had seen us do it before, but this time we made a point to get some big piles.  He loved it.  We did not love that we weren't overly successful in picking up the dog poop first.  It didn't get on Robby, thank goodness, but we had some gross shoes.

It's amazing how many leaves we can come up with, since what you see in the picture?  That's about it for our back yard.  And we don't let it go for a long time, the trees had just all dumped at once!

Leaf jumping is an absolute right of passage in childhood.  He still couldn't REALLY jump at this point (he's remedied that by now), but he did so with some help.

Obviously, it was all for Harper's benefit.

I have to say that law school ruined burying yourself in leaves for me.  We studied a case where a child was ran over by a truck after hiding under some papers in the street.  Ok, it's not EXACTLY the same, but it sure gets this mom's paranoid brain working.  And this isn't in the street.  But I have a vivid imagination, ok?

Obviously, after playing in the leaves, we had to roast some marshmallows over the fire.  Robby didn't care about the roasting part, and preferred to just grab them out of the bag.  That works.

Tomorrow?  I'll fast forward to snow.  Ha!  Maybe one day I'll keep up with the pictures.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Christmas in NYC

Last weekend we headed to NYC to visit my brother and sister-in-law and celebrate Christmas with them.  It was great to be able to finally make it work!  I am ashamed to say they have lived there for 3 years?  I think?  And we've never gone up.  But we piled into my parents' car early on Saturday, and made our way to the city.

Now this is going to sound crazy, but thank goodness for construction vehicles!  Traffic was actually very light, and we made it there in record time, but there were plenty of trucks along the side of the road for Robby to gleefully shout at.  So, driving went smoothly, kid was happy, all was good.  We stopped at a park on the way to brunch, and Robby had a ball, as it was the perfect size for him.  AND we saw a bunch of trash trucks on the walk over.

After we went out to a delicious brunch where Robby was NOT so good (stealing everything on the table and screaming at frequent intervals), we had tickets to go to Ground Zero.  Sara volunteered to go back to the apartment with the little man, to see if he would take a nap.  This was the most brilliant move ever.  While the memorial is truly sentimental and was POURING rain and quite cold.  We didn't spend all that long there admiring it.  Robby never went to sleep, but they had a good time.

After hanging around their apartment for a bit, where gifts were exchanged, Robby incredibly generous and indulgent aunt and uncle told him we were going to go to FAO Schwartz where he could choose any toy he wanted.  (This was AFTER he had already opened gifts!)  Not surprisingly, lil man found himself in front of a wall of trucks murmering, ""  I just about died laughing.  He chose another trash truck, and they have been on constant rotation ever since.

The last stop was a DELICIOUS Chinese restaurant, Joe's Shanghai.  Robby actually did pretty well here, even though he had been up since 6, not napped, and it was already 6 again.  He pigged out on absolutely everything, and was less picky than his father.  ;)  Really, the only difference was that Robby loved the dumplings, where-as they're not really Chris's thing.  We wrapped up dinner around 7:15, made our way to Penn Station, and caught a 7:50 train back to Philly.  And...Robby still did not sleep.  We got onto the train, and he started to MELT DOWN.  I'm sure the passengers in our car were entirely not thrilled.  Fortunately, it only lasted about 5 minutes, and then he was good the rest of the trip.  But, it did mean he watched a lot of Curious George on the iPad.  At 9:15 he FINALLY passed out across both our laps for 45 minutes.  And then screamed the whole car ride home from the station (about 15 minutes).  We were so nervous that he would be up when we got home, too, but he fell asleep quickly...though it was 11pm!  It was a LONG day for a little guy, and he really did very well.  Thanks Jim and Sara for a great trip!

Oh, and it's my birthday.  :)  

Thursday, January 3, 2013

The Lion at 19 months

Oh, my little goofball.  You love being silly, or, really getting attention in any form you can.  This month, that has meant you've developed some...odd...habits.  For instance: you now hit yourself.  A LOT.  Because whenever you start to hit yourself in the head and face, mommy becomes very concerned and tries to get you to stop.  SUCCESS.  Sigh.  So, whenever Robby is bad, sad, or angry, he starts smacking.  He usually has some claw marks on his cheeks because his nails aren't short enough.  I feel so bad for him!  I know that probably the answer is to ignore the behavior, but it's hard to ignore the wild smack-o-matic.

Robby is OBSESSED with cars and trucks still.  Grandma is magical because she finds garbage trucks wherever she goes, and while she was visiting for Christmas, they went to the grocery store almost every day to watch the trucks unloading.  He'll shout "truck", "trash truck", "bus", "digger", and even "taxi" when he sees them.  And, oh he knows the difference.  He can point out every type of vehicle in his MANY truck/vehicle books, and can say most of them.  I MAY finally be able to do the same.  Pre-toddler boy?  I certainly didn't know the difference between a grader and a paver or an excavator versus a concrete crusher.  :/

Food is a little hit or miss.  Robby is opinionated, and he also likes to do everything for himself most of the time.  Although, there are moments where he wants me to feed him the applesauce or yogurt, and will ask for "hep" getting a bite on his fork.  He is pretty good with utensils, but still eats most of the meal with his hands. Chris was just asking when they make that switch.  No clue.  He mostly drinks out of sippy cups, but likes straws, juice boxes, and drinking out of mom and dad's real cups.  He also MUST have his own dixie cup at bath time and when brushing his teeth.  His favorites are carbs or sweets, and he dislikes meat.  His favorite fruits are bananas, oranges, or blueberries and his favorite vegetables are peas, tomatoes, and broccoli.

Physically, he can jump, climb, get on chairs, brush his teeth and hair, clap, stomp, pretty much everything at this point.  He can kick, use his arms, and blow bubbles in the pool.  He can jump on a trampoline, climb ladders, and go down slides.  Individual finger dexterity is a little tricky, still.  We were trying to do the hand movements to "Little Bunny Foo Foo", and he still needed help putting just two fingers up.  A few strange things he cannot do: take off ANY piece of clothing (though he can unzip a jacket) and climb out of his crib (thank goodness).  

Mentally, we've seen some substantial leaps this month.  He is talking in sentences (disturbingly, he told me "Mommy diaper...ew!").  He is very aware of body functions and we're starting to focus on the potty a bit more (no success, but he tells us every time).  He grasps "hot" versus "cold" in food, temperature, and what that means for clothing.  His "babies" and bath toys all now do pretend things.  He gives them kisses, or sings with them, or more complex activities.  In particular, he's spending a lot more time with his "animals" in his little people barn and zoo.  Though, by far, he plays with his trucks the most.  I'm a little sad that he is somewhat less attached to Mommy, and will now ask for Daddy, Grandma, or Grandpa on occasion.  He was home for a week and 1/2 over the holidays, so he got a lot of time with all 5 (2 gm/gp)!  (I was working.)  I LOVE being able to have conversations.  I LOVE being able to say, "No crying, tell me why you're sad."  I LOVE that on the ride home from daycare yesterday (ok, he turned 19 months a week ago, whatever).  Yesterday when asked what he did at school, he told me, "Played inside Nana".  (He played inside with Gianna.  It was too cold for outside recess.)  He is such a BOY.  As much as I love who he is, it is hard to realize that the baby is gone.  Thank goodness he is still a snuggler.  Because ALSO yesterday, he asked for "popcorn", "drink", and "cuddles" when we got home.  I'm a lucky mom.

Remember when he was a baby?  Sigh.
Oh!  Size!  I'm not positive.  He's in 2T clothes, size 5 diapers, size 7 shoes, and is probably around 30 lbs.  He's definitely a lot taller than last month, since his pants that fit before are now floods and ones that didn't fit are perfect.  So...somewhere between 34/35" maybe?  I need to measure.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  We had a wonderful time at a friend's party...even if we had to leave at 8 to put the kiddo to bed.  Admittedly, I was asleep on the couch by 9, too.  Ah, we're definitely aging.  Or maybe just parents of a toddler.

I always find blog posts about resolutions so difficult to write.  It's admitting those flaws which, generally, I don't want to broadcast to the world.  And there are always components that I just can't share for various reasons, so they end up being a little vague.  Sorry about that.  But for the sake of accountability, here goes. Some of my goals in the coming year.

1.  Generally, I'm making positivity the center focus.  Thoughts, words, actions, relationships...I want to try and shift my perspective.

"I do believe we're all connected. I do believe in positive energy. I do believe in the power of prayer. I do believe in putting good out into the world. And I believe in taking care of each other."
Harvey Fierstein

2.  I am returning to vegetarianism.  This has weighed on me for a long time, and I used pregnancy, and then nursing as excuses.  Both of which have wrapped up.  It's time.

"Vegetarian - that's an old Indian word meaning lousy hunter."
Andy Rooney

3.  Pick up the running again.  This has started to happen, but I'm committing to it.  A 5 mile race with a friend is on the books for April.  

"Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it." 
Oprah Winfrey

4.  Read more.  Specifically at least 20 books in 2013.  That may not seem like much, and I used to be a voracious reader, but recently it's been only a couple pages a night before I fall asleep.  Though, this may still be low as I'm already 1/2 way through #2.

"There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them." 
Ray Bradbury

5.  Write something.  I know this is vague, and I need something more concrete, but there it is.  The last thing I published was in 2010.  It's time.  Maybe something fun.  I've never actually published FICTION.  Or even entertaining non-fiction.  Most of it has been academic or work related.  So, this lofty dream that I used to have when I was a 10 year old who carried a notebook everywhere needs to grow some shoots.  

"Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing." 
Benjamin Franklin 

So, there ya go.  I managed to not truly reveal any of my ugly scars.  But, I know what needs to be done.  And, I suppose that's a step in the right direction.  May everyone have the year they dream of!