Tuesday, March 31, 2009

His Mother's Son

Right after Finn turned one I was invited by a friend to a play date with all her old high school friends (read: tight knit bunch) in the Burbs. Their children were all around Finn's age if not a couple months older. I mentioned that I had been searching for a 'mom's day out' program but had not had success finding one. One mom asked:

"Where are you sending him to preschool"

"Preschool? He just turned one."

(eyes all wide and frightened looking)

"You do know that you have to wait list most preschools in advance, right?" "Well, especially if, you know, you want a good one."

(Sighs. Defeated.)


I made a mental note to start doing some research, but decided that this just must be a suburb thing and not to get myself in a frenzy over it. I mean, come on, this is not College, it's PRESCHOOL. That means BEFORE SCHOOL, right? Isn't it like glorified daycare?

Flash forward to today. I am on a list for a Spanish immersion preschool that will open this August. Sounds soooo pretentious. I am not even the least bit concerned. I am, however, STILL looking for a 'mom's day out' program. I went to visit a program yesterday. Finn fit in well. No, better then well, he immediately integrated with the other children. He sat right down and started to enjoy snack time with the other kiddos. The helpers invited us to the playground for 'outside time' and he practically dragged me by the hand and as soon as he got to the playground he let go of my hand and that was the last of him. In the sandbox he went with all the big kids. I watched him play with the other children. I waited for him to look up a me, look for me....it never happened. When it was time to go he wailed. He wanted to stay, he practically shoved me away.

Since he was born I listened to countless people comment on his striking blue eyes and wispy blond hair. "He is adorable. He must look just like his father". Or....."He is John's little mini-me." He loves music and enjoys dancing just like daddy. Today I saw my extroverted personality in him for the first time. His ease and confidence around others. His carefree mannerisms and playfulness. You love your child so much and the ultimate compliment has got to be when you see yourself in them shining brightly.

already playing with baby brother/sister....

"Where's the party, people?"

Monday, March 30, 2009

25 Weeks and Flora Comparisons Gone Crazy at BabyCenter

Before I even got pregnant the first time around I had been frequenting Babycenter's Website, you know, to familiarize myself with babies and pregnancy and what not. When I got pregnant I decided to sign myself up for their weekly newsletter and John did as well. We would chuckle gay-ishly at our week by week updates..."Congratulations! Your baby is now the size of a poppy seed!" At 7 weeks, he/she was a blueberry, at 9 weeks a grape...you get the picture. We thought this was, well, cute and fun and we always wondered what produce our baby would be compared to the next week. Then at 10 weeks we got....Kumquat. Ummmm...what does that look like? Not to mention how dirty it sounds. Come on isn't this a "G" rated parents website? At 14 and 15 weeks they went back to a lemon and apple, respectively. Okay, fair enough. And then I scratched my head at 17 weeks when my babe was supposed to be the size of a turnip? Is this with the long stalks attached, or not? And now, at 25 weeks, I get....Rutabaga. Really? I mean, come on, my grocery store doesn't even carry these. I had to google it (see pic above). Why don't you just tell me the baby is the size of fuse puller or an elephant beetle? And why produce? I happen to be more of a meat girl myself, not that I dislike produce, but how about cow or pig parts?

"Congratulations, your baby is the size of a Ham hock!" At least I know what that means.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Shannon's Favorite Things

One of the great things about maintaining your own blog is you don't have to be as famous or important as Oprah, Martha or Nicole Richie to make a "favorite Things" list. And since I am all about lists lately that is exactly what I am going to do.

Target's Mossimo Long and Lean Tanks - These puppies are so long that they cover my entire 25 week belly and when I am not pregnant they are great for layering. I have avoided maternity clothing so far and these help my cause.

DiorShow Mascara - This stuff is WELL WORTH the money. It does everything it's supposed to do - lifts and separates.

On Gossamer 'Bump it up' Bra - From size A to DD this bra has been the best support and, again, it lifts and separates!!!!

Gymboree Pajamas - I have never been crazy about there clothing, but there p.j's are the PERFECT fit for long skinny babies.

Make-Up Forever Aqua Eyes Eyeliner in Black - So this one made my AND OPRAH's list! This stuff proved itself after I bawled my eyes out at a funeral and I still had thick black eyeliner perfectly in place. It's called grieving in style, man.

Hanky Panky Low Rise Underwear - I have converted oh so many people of ALL ages and sizes to these one size fits all puppies. I will never where any other kind again.

Chanel Nail Color - I know, I know this seems extravagant but the colors are amazing and it stays put.

Havaianas Flip Flops - Wear in conjunction with the Chanel. Perfecto!

Pampers Diapers - I love them. I love how they make the baby smell more baby-ish and how they have a perfect fit every time. I can't afford them, and usually buy Costco brand, but when he's in between sizes or when they have sales plus triple coupon - they're all mine.

I had to leave food products off because the list because it would have gone on and on for pages. It ended up being mainly a make-up/fashion list with a little baby thrown in.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

It Just Can't Get Any Better Than This

My heart has been swelling all day because I keep having those moments where I stop and think how lucky I am to be where I am in life. You know, those days where you look at your child who is just being such a sweet little angel and behaving well and looking at you and strangers all day all smiley and adoringly? I love those days.

I took Finn to Nordstroms today to get him a pair of new shoes since we had an inkling that his 5.5's were getting to small for his feet. Well, what do you know, the kind lady measured his foot and he is nearly a 6.5...OOPS!!! They sell shoes that come in size 6.5 but they are Stride Rite's (I know fashion snob here)and happen to be nearly $10 more than the rest. So the frugal shopper that I am, we ended up with the super cool, super light weight Puma's in a size 7 instead. Even though they are a little big, they hold his feet well, he doesn't slide in them, and we will have them for a longer period of time. So there. I can hardly wait for his Dad to come home and yell at me for the bright whiteness of them....I worried about that for 5 seconds until the lady told me they was well/easily. I would have bought them anyway, I mean, COME ON the kids shoes are going to get dirty!

As I mentioned Finn was so cooperative and they had ball's (balloons) that excited him to no end and of course, the big fish tank. He said fish for the first time. Yay! I also got to spend some time with my friend Natalie who snapped some pictures of our shopping experience so I can remember how EASY it was one day...

In totally unrelated news. So I looked over at my baby ticker side bar today and noticed that I have only 100 days left of this pregnancy. What? Whaaat? I am so not ready to go down to 2-digit days. Really I am not. In fact, this weekend I will indeed be at 25 weeks pregnant with a baby the size of a Rutabaga, according to Babycenter. Anybody know what the hell a rutabaga looks like? How is that helpful? Apparently I should also be expecting braxton-hicks contractions to start soon. I am absolutely not holding my breath on this one because I still have yet to experience a contraction of any kind for myself (well scratch that - I may have felt one or two right before I got my epidural last time. I need to ask John about that, though). This is my second pregnancy and I still wonder what it feels like to "go into labor". I really have no idea. The day that I was induced I walked into the hospital at my scheduled time 2 centimeters dilated with an apparently large-ish fetus ready to be born. I was given the maximum amount of Pitocen (this stuff was suppose to make the contractions stronger and harder)and finally my water broke several hours into it all. He was average size (7.5oz) but I would not have wanted him any bigger (still needed STITCHES, People)! How did I get off on this tangent?

And as a totally totally unrelated side note. My brother-in-law got a job as a server at Lucas Park Grill. Yay for him!! Sad for me. He made frequent trips to the house in his unemployed period which was quite nice for us.

"ball, ball, ball!"

Look how well I sit for the lady and let her put on my shoes!

This is the last time you will ever see these shoes this white again...suckers!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Quick! Find Me Some Wood to Knock On

So it has been over a week and Finn has not had one tantrum and he has been in a great mood from morning till night. Ahhhhh....I am finally over nap transition HELL. Nap transition is sorely underrated as a stage in a toddlers life in my book. You hear so much about growing pains, teething, and separation anxiety (to name a few) but rarely do 'they' talk about nap transition? Finn is now pretty much down to one nap a day, going down anywhere between 11:30-1:00 and sleeping for two and a half to three hours. The schedule seems to work out okay for me, however, my goal is to push it as close to 1PM as possible leaving the morning wide open for whatever it is I do all day.

I STILL love the Zoo. My love for it grows everyday, actually. Today we got to our playgroup early and had some extra time before Zoomagination started so I decided to take a walk. We passed the brown bears and the penguins and made our way to the Carousel only to find out that rides are FREE until 10AM. YIPPEEEE!!!! Not only that but the children's zoo is also free the first hour. I may move in and live there. Finn loves animals and I love FREE. He was adorable on the carousel and he still thinks the horse says "woof woof" because that was what he was saying the entire time.

Finn's vocabulary is actually at the point where he says words consistently throughout the day with his favorites being - ball, dog, kitty, and hot. I feel it is necessary to compile a list of other words he knows at the point if for nothing more than posterity's' sake:

Kitty (spoken in the most high pitch tone possible)
Ear (These last two are almost indistinguishable)

No, Mama, and Dada have been left off the list because of the complete overuse of them usually all spoken in the same sentence...

Monday, March 23, 2009

24ish Weeks

So I had a prenatal check-up this past week and well I knew before I stepped on that scale that my weight had significantly changed. Most of my pants literally DID NOT FIT overnight. I was, however, STILL shocked to find out that I gained 10 pounds in 4 weeks. That's a lot people!!! Anyway, I guess all of those hundreds of boxes of Girl Scout cookies I consumed this month coupled with a week of sitting on my ass at my parents house did the 'trick'. Anyway, I need to slow down because I am starting to feel lethargic and my fat jeans are just not that cute and I'd rather put off wearing them as long as possible.....Otherwise everything else looks fine. I know, Iknow, it's not ALL about ME there is a fetus at stake here!!! Well he/she is just as wiggly and busy as ever. I am assuming it is he/shes way of asking for more thin mints.

My weekend consisted of a mixture of basketball, death, and a hard blow of reality not particularly in that order or even related but nonetheless consisted of lots of highs and lows. This was not a great recipe for a overly hormonal pregnant person who is still considered a newish mom with a rosy colored view of life. I attended a funeral where my role was supposed to be that of the supportive friend and I am pretty sure at the very end of the service with tears streaming down my face he was the one giving ME encouraging words. Anyway, luckily I am huge and apparently this is to be expected. On a positive note, I am so honored to be a part of such a supportive group of friends. So what if most live miles and miles away, just knowing they are "there" is enough for me.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

In a New York Minute

Okay so it took me way too long to get back to the Blog. I arrived home from NYC Sunday night only to turn around and drive to Woodstock to visit my parents Monday morning. I got back Sunday night. My first intention was to update the Blog in Woodstock. I could blame my parents dinosaur Internet connection on my not doing so, but the truth is I just wanted a break from ALL of the normal things I do on a daily basis. My second intention was to update my Blog first thing on Monday, but man, it takes awhile to get back into the swing of things!!! So here I am good intentions, not so good follow through.

So my trip to New York. Ahhhhh New York. Lovely, beautiful New York City, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I, of course, remember the days when I was itching so bad to get the HELL out of there but enough time had definitely passed where I can blissfully enjoy every inch of that city without a negative thought even crossing my mind once. But more on that later.

So my trip started out with a flight from STL to O'hare and as I was wondering to myself if I would ever make it past the first leg of my trip or perhaps be stuck in the Abyss that IS the Chicago O'Hare Aiport the man next to me struck up a conversation. In all of the many many times I have flown, I have never had this happen. At first I was mildly annoyed...these days I rarely get several minutes of quiet time to read or THINK with taking care of a toddler all day while being pregnant and I was looking forward to finishing my book, but after a while I found Matt to be rather interesting and our conversation made me think a lot afterwards. He was reading his own book and he pointed to the word "superfluous" and asked me what it meant. From there I found out that he is from a very small town outside of Cleveland but works in Pittsburgh most of the time and travels 3-4 times a week, sometimes as far as China. His trips abroad sometimes last up to 3 months. He has a wife and three small children and I commented that it must be hard on them with him being away all the time and he confirmed that. He loves traveling for work and is very interested in what he does, a contractual brick layer who works for a small steel manufacturing company, but when abroad he never goes outside of the hotel or office and never goes site seeing! He's been to 35 countries and never explores them whilst he's there....I was dumbfounded. He loves traveling but that's only because of the additional money he makes and the projects he's assigned to. He never went to College but it's obvious he is paid very well for what he does. A different perspective that what I am used to for sure. Nevertheless, he was swell and I was glad to have talked with him.

I did eventually make it out of O'Hare with only a 45 minute delay(!!!) and into NYC. After a quick cab ride I made it to Amanda's apartment in Chelsea. We enjoyed a lovely dinner at Planet Thai (super sweet Lucite chairs and a surveillance system set up all as decor - FANTASTIC). The food was great and we had a lovely conversation (TWO adult conversations in ONE day....WOW) and then we walked home. On the way home I commented on all the loveliness that is New York, the beautiful brownstone apartments, the energy....and OH! look at that cute little tree over there and Amanda chuckled and pointed out the 6 foot piles of trash that lined the other side of the street I happened to overlook. Saturday (dress day) was a WHIRLWIND. We had to hightail it Uptown to make it to an appointment with a dressmaker. After sometime found out that they were going to be able to work with Amanda's free dress, met Amanda's amazing friends, and started looking all the dress' accouterments. Time FLEW BY and wouldn't you know it? We missed lunch and finally sat down for a glass of champagne and the day was more than half over. We ended our day with a slice of Pizza from Waldo's and a trip to Macy's at 34th Street to look for shoes and my bridesmaid dresses. I honestly could not believe my trip was nearly over and I would be back on a plane the next morning.

One thing about this trip that struck me was the pure wonderfulness of Amanda's friends. Of course, there is Debby, who was my college roommate and oh it was so nice to see her again and we just picked up where we left off like no time had passed. And then there was Carly and Michelle. Former Aisecer's (errrr...but don't ask them about Aiesec just this minute), we all got along so well and shared sooo many laughs and I realized how much I missed female interaction and friendship.

Anyway, I wish I had a picture to share but HA (!) there was no time for pictures!

Friday, March 6, 2009

New York, New York

An update for my loyal 2 blog followers so no one thinks I've gone missing.  I've arrived safely in New York City and I am enjoying a lovely chat with my dear friend Amanda.  

P.S. Yes, Amanda is one of two of my loyal blog followers.  RATS!  

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

What Happens When You Won't Spend the $8 on a Professional Haircut

I would have been just as happy letting him grow it out real long a la Ryder Russell but John wouldn't have it. This is all his doing. Clearly Finn and I are not happy about what went down yesterday. In all fairness to John, unless you are a trained professional, it is near impossible to cut a wiggling, fit-throwing toddler's hair. And as Cy pointed out, unless you are a trained professional it is near impossible to cut an adults hair. I will be taking Finn to Master Cuts next time he needs a trim.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Back to Sunshine and Rainbows

I re-read yesterday's post and WOW that was an extra dose of unnecessary self pity RIGHT THERE. Here I have a perfectly normal child who brings unmeasurable amounts of happiness to my life and I am complaining that I can't handle a little more than usual toddler curiosity? I made a promise to myself that I would not get caught up in the world of comparing my child to yours and my parenting to how others parent....and there I go and mess that up royally. Stupid pregnancy hormones.

Look at me, I am so damn cute that I belong in a Gap Ad

I am just happy running around carrying these green balls in my hands

How about next week instead of the puppet show you take me to get my hairs cut?