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Showing posts from 2007

I Wasn't Myself

Last night, Londo and I watched 300, which was a truly excellent movie. It's the kind of action-packed, adventure, hero-story I usually love. But this was the first time I'd seen it. Londo saw it--or rather most of it--in the movie theater. I had the option of seeing it with him in the theater with some friends of ours, but the ladies of the group decided to go see Music and Lyrics and I went with them. Usually I would pick the action flick over the chick flick, but I was over 41 weeks pregnant and not in the mood to see an action flick.

That's right, I was OVER 41 weeks pregnant. Can you guess why neither Londo or I saw the ends of our movies? The timing was impeccable, like a sitcom, really, when I hurried off to the bathroom, discovering my water broke and text messaging Londo with the news. But that's not what I wanted to write about today. I like the idea of writing my birth story on the year anniversary (like someone else I know did), so that story will wait.

But f…

Cara Mama - Smiles Await You When You Rise

Cara Mama,

Was that better? I didn't wake up until 4:45! So you got to sleep a lot, and we went back to sleep pretty easily. Then when I did wake up, I was all smiley. And when you started kissing me, I gave you kisses back! It was so sweet.

Daddy got to sleep in until 8:45! We are good to him, aren't we? We were quiet and happy so he could sleep in while we played downstairs.

I know I feel a lot better since I got a good night's sleep. I hope you and Daddy do, too! This doesn't mean I'm going to take good naps today, though.

Ti amo,
Pumpkin

Cara Bambina - Not Again

Mia Cara Nervosetta Bambina (my dear fussy baby),

What a rough night we all had. You are a poor baby, and I know this is tough for you. But you are breaking your parents. We are broken. You're daddy's back? Broken from carrying, holding, rocking you. You're mommy's psyche? Broken from trying to soothe, nurse, get you back to sleep, deal with your fussiness and clinginess. We are two broken people trying to make you sleep and feel better.

Just when I thought things were finally at the edge of manageable, you hit another regression. You're dad does not want me to jump to the conclusion that this is the 46 week (10 month-ish) sleep regression/fussy period that should accompany a developmental spurt (so if you are reading this Londo, I suggest you stop and come back to it in another week), but I see all the signs. I've referenced the only book that has ever been true for you (my unique baby). The early evenings and early mornings have been getting more and more diff…

Post-Christmas Wrap-up and Not Killing the Cat

Well, I'm feeling a lot better about Christmas since talking with others who had way worse times than I did. Suddenly, my Christmas looks pretty good! ;-) I am having some post-Christmas epiphanies, too. I've gotten some good advice, and from now on I'm going to do only that which I think is fun and worth doing, and let the other stuff go. Londo and I talked about it, and we are also going to do more earlier. And that's enough about that (at least for now).

Today, my major gripe is the cat. I may very well kill him one of these days. You see, when the cat isn't happy, he pees on stuff. Usually it's a bathmat or a rug, often it is right exactly where you step without thinking. But yesterday morning, it was on my good coat, which had slipped onto the floor. And this morning, it was the changing pad that's on the ground in the Pumpkin's bathroom.

I have had it with this behavior!!! I'm ready to strangle him! This is not an appropriate way to show his di…

Bah Humbug. Huh.

So, I didn't realize this until yesterday, but I hate Christmas. It turns out, I'm not alone in how I feel about this, but Londo's crotchety-ness isn't really surprising to me. I am, however, surprised by my feelings.

When we are kids, Christmas is a wonderful, magic time. Everything is done for us, without us thinking about it. There are decorations, good food, presents, candy, carols, cards, time off of school. It's great! My sister, brother and I would wake up our parents, run downstairs and open our stockings, and then all eat breakfast together. Usually, my dad would make our favorite eggs-in-toast, while mom was working on the Christmas dinner. After breakfast, we'd all go open presents. Then we'd either go to my Grandmother's house or have the family over to our house, and there'd be more presents and games and food. It was so much fun.

Now, I'm not only an adult, but a parent. Now I have to do the present buying, decorating, present wrappi…

Merry Christmas and To Be Read Challenge

To all those who celebrate: Merry Christmas!

We've had a great Christmas morning so far. It's the Pumpkin's first Christmas, and she seems to be enjoying it. At 9.5 months, she doesn't quite get it, and she had a little bit of a stunned look on her face when we were opening presents (hers, hubby's and mine). Londo and I had a lot of fun, and we are going to my parents for Christmas dinner with my siblings and their families. I hope all you interneters are having a wonderful day.

Now, someone inspired me to do the To Be Read Challenge 2008. I buy, receive and borrow so many books, and I really mean to read them all. I just don't always get to them. So I'm doing the challenge! Below is my list of books and alternates, which I will at some point add to the side of the blog to track. Anyone else want to join in?

The books (in no particular order even though they are numbered):
1. The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver
2. Bel Canto, by Ann Patchett
3. The Pact, b…

Question of the Week - Traditions

This is a special time of year for many people. And I was wondering, is there a tradition that you particularly enjoy? This could be any kind of tradition: religious, cultural, familial. Old or new. Just something that you consider a tradition and you do every year.

I know MommyEm's answer is not going to be receiving Christmas cards. hehe.

Here's my answer:
For the past 5 years or so, my neice (who just turned 13!) comes over to my house during the week before Christmas, and we do our holiday baking. I love baking and we make really good stuff (truffles, gingerbreadmen, caramel popcorn), but even more, I love this time I get to spend with my neice. Just hanging out and baking. No matter how busy we are through the year, we make time to do this together at perhaps the busiest time of year. And this year, we are doing a 3-day extravaganza of baking!

Guest Blogger: With Every Christmas Card I Write...

I have a special treat today... My good friend MommyEm has agreed to provide a post for today so I can continue day 2 of baking (which will probably go into a day 3 and maybe 4) and work on my own Christmas cards! Just maybe I'll get it all done close to Christmas. Thanks MommyEm, and enjoy readers!

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All names and some details have been changed to protection the innocent…oh, who am I kidding…it’s to protect me! - MommyEm

I used to like Christmas letters. Until exactly 40 second ago. I liked everything about them – the pictures, the paper, and the concise life updates. My favorites were from close friends and family since I knew the real dirt and liked to see how they edited out the PG-13 and R rated details from their lives. I suppose it all started when my sister and I were the stars of our parents Christmas letters and I liked that people around the globe (my mother has a friend in Holland) were reading about my adventures in life.

But my love of mass y…

Cara Mama - Early Christmas

Cara Mama,

I had so much fun this morning when we got to open presents with Grandma and Grandpa! The crinkly bag and paper were my favorites! What do you mean there are books, clothes and toys? They aren't nearly as fun as the BOX! And we are going to do this again in a few days? Will there be more bags, paper and boxes? Yeah!!!

I hope Grandma and Grandpa come back and visit again soon. That was fun!

La Tua Figlia,
Pumpkin

Cara Figlia - When It Runs, We Catch It

Cara Figlia,

I'm sorry you have this cold. I know it's hard on you because you don't feel good and don't know why. Luckily, it's not so bad, as colds go. But that runny nose... Oh boy! It keeps running, and you HATE having your nose wiped. I don't much enjoy wiping it either, but it has to be done. Otherwise your snot runs right into your mouth, and that's just gross.

When I get close to your face with a tissue, you turn your head side to side, away from the tissue, and cry and scream. I feel like the worst mommy ever, but I have to wipe the snot up! I'm not actually trying to torture you or hurt you. I try to be gentle or make it a game, but you still hate. every. second.

I hope as you get older, you will at least understand why I'm doing it and not freak out quite as much. I can only hope.

Ti Amo,
Mama

It's That Time of Year

Between having a lot to do at work, running holiday errands, and visiting inlaws, I don't really have time to post today or even visit all my favorite blogs. But please feel free to browse the previous posts. Perhaps you would enjoy the Questions of the Week. Go ahead and answer one, if you haven't already. Even you, my dear friend who thinks my hubby is funnier than I am. ("It's not that your posts aren't funny, it's just that whole 'hazy fogger' thing was SO funny." I know he's funnier than I am, but I'm still going to give you a hard time.)

I hope everyone else is getting it all done. I'm not sure how I will. We still don't even have up any lights or a tree, and we still have to address all the envelopes for the cards! At least I finished the shopping...

That Bites!

It's happened before, but never like this. I thought I understood how painful it could be... But I didn't know it could hurt that bad! I didn't realize that it could go from being so sweet to very!suddenly!very!painful!

That's right, the Pumpkin bite me while I was nursing her to sleep last night. She's had a cold and she's been teething, so I'm hoping it was just due to her uncomfort. During previous teething bouts, she has bitten, but in those cases she started slowly and I was able to feel it coming and stop her quickly. This time, it was sudden, it was hard, and I was not smooth in my movements to stop her.

Out of the blue, she bit down hard. I yelled out and jerked sharply. She bit down harder in her surprise at my yelling and movement. I proceeded to yell louder and poke her in the cheek in my effort to get my finger in her mouth and pry her off. I finally was able to fish-hook her jaw with my finger and pull her away from my breast.

And she looked at…

Daddy's Take: Home for the Holidays

So, the Holidays are upon us. Now, I need to make a disclaimer before we move on. I hate most Christmas music. I love Christmas, mind you, but the music makes me nuts. I chalk it up to having spent roughly 2 years working in the mall. (I know some of you out there are feeling my pain right now.) I worked in a couple of different clothing stores, and they each had in-store stereo systems. They each had the same collection of Christmas music. So, 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, from early November (yes, that early) through mid January, I had to listen to the same 4 CDs of Christmas music. I firmly believe this is what's happening in Gitmo right now.

However I now have realized that with Pumpkin's first Christmas coming up, I have an overwhelming desire to sing her every single Holiday ditty I know! She has, if only temporarily, given me the joy of Christmas carols again (I owe you one Kiddo.)

I find myself looking forward to this Christmas more than any other I can remem…

Question of the Week - Passing on Your Traits

Thanks to everyone for sharing the names you loved on last week's QotW. I loved them all! (With the exception of Londo's names... We will talk later...)

Here's another QotW related to kids, as this is a mommy/parent blog:

If you could pass on any physical trait and/or character trait to your child, what would it be? What would you not want to pass on?

Here are my answers: I would love to pass on my eye color to a child of mine. So far, it looks like the Pumpkin will not have the same shade as me, although she does have my eye shape, and her eyes are really beautiful. But I got my eye color from my mom, and I would love to pass it on to one of my children. As for my character trait, I hope to pass on my love of animals.

What I don't want to pass on is my acne-prone skin (how am I still breaking out at 31?!?!) and how I deal (or should I say not deal) with frustrations.

How about you?

Cara Mama - But I Wanted to Play!

Cara Mama,

I don't understand why we couldn't play last night. After all, you, Daddy and I were up for over 2 hours anyway. Why did you guys keep trying to get me back to sleep? Wasn't it obvious that I was awake and didn't want to sleep or nurse or be rocked or even lay down? We could have just played. It would have been much more fun.

Sure, Daddy eventually got me back to sleep. But I think we would have all would have been in much better moods if we had gotten up, went downstairs and checked out the toys. I don't know what you mean by "middle of the night" or "going to lose it." But at least when I finally went back to sleep, I only woke up one more time and then slept in until 7:30! Aren't I a good baby?

La tua bambina,
Pumpkin

Cara Figlia - The World of Categories

Cara figlia,

The book The Wonder Weeks says you are entering The World of Categories. In the last phase, you discovered The World of Relationships, and now you are using your understanding of relationships to categorize things. There are apparently many ways in which you could be doing this, but I've been watching you and I think you are discovering How Things Feel and How Things Move (Note: I've made these up to describe you--they were not part of the book). You are also discovering How Things Taste, but I suspect all babies do this, especially when teething.

You love to touch everything, pick stuff up, feel it in your hands, turn it over, squish it, rub it, manipulate whatever it is in your hands to figure out How Stuff Feels. If you are anything like your mom (me) or your 12-year-old niece, you will continue to do this with things as you grow up. I still love the feel of soft, furry and silky things, and when I shop, I often touch the fabrics around me. If I don't like th…

That's Amore!

When the moon hits your eye, like a big pecan pie... Okay, so it's supposed to be pizza pie, but I've got pecan pies on the mind! I provide pies/desserts for my family's holiday dinners, and my niece and I get together before Christmas and do holiday baking! Because not only do I love to eat desserts, but I love to make them.

This weekend, my niece (who is almost 13!!! OMG!!!) will come over to my house and we'll use my new Kitchen Aid mixer to bake sugar cookies, gingerbread cookies, chocolate truffles, lemon pound cake and I'm thinking of trying caramel popcorn. We package up the goodies and give them to our extended family as Christmas gifts. Everyone seems to like them, this gives me special time with my niece, and she and I get to eat yummy treats! It's a win-win-win!

Londo has generously offered to take the Pumpkin to the mall with him on a busy Saturday afternoon while he does his Christmas shopping. Not only does he hate shopping, but he hates the mall, a…

Happy Hanukkah and Child Care

First, I feel so remise that I haven't wished the world a Happy Hanukkah through my blog! I have sent email and told people in person, but here is to the world at large: Happy Hannukah! May your oil always burn longer than it should.

Now, on to my current crisis. The Pumpkin goes to my mom's house everyday while I'm at work. My mom watches her and my niece, who is a year older than the Pumpkin, until 1:00 when the nanny/babysitter comes over to watch them in the afternoon. My mom is a music teacher and teaches out of the home in the afternoons. In addition, my 93-year-old grandma has been staying with my mom since October, although she will be going to stay with my uncle for a few months after Christmas.

In general, this has been working out. But every now and then, my mom has a tough day (like yesterday) or some issue comes up, and Londo and I end up re-evaluating whether or not we should move the Pumpkin into another situation. As you might have learned by now, my baby is…

Tough Job for a Working Mom

Every night when the Pumpkin wakes up after 2:00 (and she always does), I get her out of her crib and nurse her back to sleep lying down in the bed in her nursery. We continue to cosleep until my alarm goes off at 6:00.

Yesterday morning, the alarm woke me up from a very vivid and action-packed dream. This was after the Pumpkin had woken me around 3, and me not sleeping longer than an hour at one time until the alarm went off. After that, the baby was pretty fussy the rest of the morning until I dropped her off at my mom's and headed to work.

I called Londo on the way in to work and was telling him how exhausted I was. "Well, after leading a rebel unit against the Chinese take-over of our moon bases, I woke up and had to deal with a teething baby all morning. I feel like I haven't slept at all."

His response was, "It's tough being a working mother. And 'all your base are belong to us!'"

As a fellow geek, I found this very funny. I also started thin…

Question of the Week - What's in a Name

If you could name/could have named your child anything you want, what would it be/have been?

And in this bubble world, you could be pick anything and everyone would love whatever you pick (including your partner, family, and strangers), it would go great with whatever last name you had, no one would tease your child, and it didn't have any weird/bad connotations.

For a girl, mine would probably be Lily, or some name that could be shortened to Lily (as in Lillian or maybe Delilah). My second choice would be Sienna, my third would actually be the Pumpkin's real name, and my fourth would be River or Star or something equally as hippie.

For a boy, mine would be Hunter. Other names at the top of my list are Connor, Dante, or Marcus.

How about you?

Show Us Your Teeth

As with so many other things, the Pumpkin did not get teeth the way the books said she would. This is another reason that I don't depend on the books to tell me what's going to happen or what should happen. Some books (like The Wonder Weeks) have been great at helping me figure out what is currently happening, but I don't try to predict anything with this child anymore. (This is also why I love Ask Moxie (and her community of readers)--because she doesn't say any one thing will happen or any one way will work for your child.)

The Pumpkin got her first two teeth on the bottom, in the middle. Not unusual, except that they came in early-ish (I think around 4.5 months). Then we went months without any teeth. Finally, around 8 months, the Pumpkin got her next tooth. It was on the top, but it was not either of the middle teeth. She got the one to the right of the middle teeth--the lateral incisor, not the central incisor. It was a surprise for us new parents, who thought sure…

Cara Mama - Feeling Better?

Cara Mama,

When Daddy and I saw you sitting on the couch yesterday evening, you looked very tired and blue. So I decided to be the Best Baby Ever! Daddy put me in your lap, and I was cuddly and gigglely and smiley and oh so sweet! It really seemed to cheer you up, and we had so much fun just sitting on the couch.

I love to play with your hair, and I'm trying to learn to play with it without pulling it. I love to squirm around in different ways in your lap, looking at everything. I love it when Daddy and you tickle me under my chin and on my knees.

It was so much fun. Let's play like that again soon.

La tua bambina,
Pumpkin

Cara Figlia - Incredible Baby

Cara mia bambina,

You are incredible! Next week, you will be 9 months old, and I'm so amazing at everything you've learned to do in those 9 months. Just in the past few days, I've realized that you have made a "magical leap forward" in terms of development (as talked about in the book The Wonder Weeks). Even your Grandma noticed, and she and I talked about it over the phone yesterday. You are able to do more with your body and with toys, and you are starting to entertain yourself more.

We are still at the edge of this 9-month fussy stage with separation anxiety. Your Grandma and I talked about that recently, too--how you don't want to be put down and are randomly fussy about things. I was thinking that it was your teething bothering you, and I'm sure it is, but you are also going through some very typical issues for a baby right at 9 months old.

I know that in just a little while longer, you will be through the fussy stage, and we can all revel in the new t…

These Are a Few of My Favorite Posts...

Before I get to my post today, please check this out about toy recalls and add any questions you might have to the comments. Hmmm. I feel like I'm linking to Mom-101 a lot--but she's just so very linkable!

I was talking to a friend yesterday, and although I go on and on about different parentbloggers and how funny and great they are, she just doesn't get into them. I understand that. At first, I didn't get why people blogged or would read blogs. I don't watch reality TV or talk shows or listen to call-in radio shows. I generally prefer fiction, although I do like biographies and history, perhaps because they are more indepth looks at real people than I think you get with reality TV.

But then, thanks to a friend, I discovered mommyblogs. NOW I get it. Here are other women and men who are interesting, good writers and writing about things I can relate to. My world has changed so much that I even started my own.

As I was talking to my friend, I told her I'd recommen…

No Comment

Before I had my own blog (was that really just 2 weeks ago?), I didn't comment much on other people's blogs. I read a bunch regularly, was often amused and interested, and on occasion, when I really felt compelled, would comment. The only exceptions were places I started to feel very comfortable or know the blogger IRL.

Reading blogs felt like I was listening in on other people's conversations, or even sneaking glances in other people's journals. Hmm, I think the conversations is a better analogy. To me, it felt like people were sharing bits of their lives with their friends, who would respond in the comments. But these people didn't know me. I would be an interloper, just randomly commenting. I felt like they would wonder who I was and why was I jumping in.

I'm not a shy person. In fact, I will jump in on people's conversations around me("Oh no, it's raining out there?" and "It took you how long to get into work?" were recent jump-in…

What Would My Mother Say?

Note: Apparently, I'm going to be linking to people this week. I did yesterday, and I'm about to again today. And so, I will link all week long.

Currently, I'm working on letting things go. After all, what's the harm in letting things go that aren't going to hurt the kids? And why do we parents believe things have to be perfect or set a bunch of rules for the sake of having rules? And why do we judge others who let some things go, when really the rule is for no good reason? Don't get me started on the Sanctimommy!

Why do we stress about things and make our lives harder than they have to be? Why do we buy that extra winter coat for a baby who will almost assuredly not need it? Why do we go crazy trying to come up with variety in food for a baby who doesn't care if they eat the same 10 things? Why do we spend an hour trying to get the baby to sleep when the nap lasts only 15 minutes, or 30 if you are really lucky?

Often, I think we berate ourselves because of t…

Question of the Week - Just Desserts

Someone got me thinking about desserts the other day. This is not hard to do, as I LOVE desserts with an intensity that is a little scary. One of the best parts of pregnancy and breastfeeding for me is that I get to indulge in my sweet tooth all the time. I really do have dessert after lunch AND dinner. I have no idea how I'll deal when I stop breastfeeding... I guess I'll have to get pregnant again (I say as if it was easy the first time).

Anyway, this line of thinking brings me to the Question of the Week:

What is your favorite dessert?

My answer:
Okay, I have two. But I think it's allowed, considering how much I LOVE desserts. My favorite is the pastry Napoleon, but I so rarely find it done just right, with the pastry flaky enough and the cream the right level of fluffy creaminess. So my close second favorite is creme brulee.

Mmmmm. Now I'm ready for dessert. I have just finished breakfast, after all...

Okay, apparently I can't spell things correctly until I've h…

Daddy's Take: Sleep Deprevation, Short Term Memory Loss, and Sleep Deprevation

So as the father of an 8-9 month old--especially as the father of the "fussiest baby in the world"(TM)--I have noticed a strange phenomenon. I have gotten accustomed to going through my days in what can only be described as a hazy fog. I have always been a morning person (I know, it's pretty disgusting). Before the baby, I would get up at 0530 and be at work by 0700, and be in a damn good mood. I would leave work around 1500 and be home and relaxing (at least I think that's what I used to do) within the hour. This is one of the better ways to avoid the DC traffic, or so I have found.

Now, my routine has shifted a bit.

After being "on duty" with the "fussiest baby in the world"(TM) until 0200, I get about 3-4 uninterrupted hours of sleep per night (on average). My alarm goes off right on schedule at 0500. I have absolutely no recollection of this on any given morning. I sometimes have a vague memory of slapping the large snooze button on the top of t…

Cara Figlia - My Fussy Girl

Cara figlia,

It's true, what they say, I really do love in a way I didn't know existed before and it is all worth it and all that. But you, my love, are a Fussy Baby. There, I've said it. Now it's out there, and I can't take it back. I don't even want to take it back.

You could not be defined as ONLY a Fussy Baby, though. You are sweet, cuddly, giggly, smiley, inquisitive, active, and many other things. But you are also a Fussy Baby.

I know some people were happy to have the diagnosis of colic and don't understand why others don't want to name their babies "colicky." And when you were just a newborn, your dad and I agonized over what was going on with you. I read the Baby Book's definition of Fussy/Colicky/High Needs, and I realized that my issue with "colicky" was that I didn't think it truly describe what was going on with you. I have no problem with the term or using it to descibe babies. But you fit more with the desciption…

Would You Like Some Cheese With That?

I hate my mornings. That's not to say that I hate all mornings. I used to be fine with mornings. I was never a "morning person" per se, but I'd made my peace with getting up early, getting ready for the day and commuting in to work (which is usually pretty rough in the DC area).

But things are different now. Now we have the Pumpkin, who I love so much and wouldn't trade her for the world, but... she has not been what you'd call an easy baby. For the first almost 3 months of her life (except at night), she WOULD NOT BE PUT DOWN FOR MORE THAN 5 MINUTES! I am not exaggerating. It wasn't one of those things where she would make a noise and I, a new mom, would hurry to pick her up. Within minutes of being put down, she would work up to a scream of epic proportions. HOW! COULD! YOU! PUT! ME! DOWN! And I didn't "get her used to" being held. This was the case from Day 1. Although, I guess I did get her used to it, considering she was carried around i…

Don't Push Me Cause I'm Close to the Edge...

It's like the Pumpkin somehow knows that her dad and I are right on the edge of losing it... And she pulls us back by sleeping from 8 UNTIL 5! Yes, it was a beautiful night last night.

The morning was still rough for her and me because we didn't really go back to sleep until 5:50. My alarm goes off at 6:00. So basically we were up since 5. And that almost hour when we lay in bed with me trying to nurse her back to sleep? She fidgeted the whole time, scratching me, pulling at my PJ pants, plucking at my PJ top, scratching the wall behind her, kicking me, grabbing at my hand, waving her arm around, and you get the picture. Fidgeting in general drives me crazy. It's especially frustrating when the baby fidgets for almost an hour when all I want to do is go back to sleep.

The 7 hours of sleep I got were great, but the morning was not so great with her fussing because she was still tired and my grouchiness because of the Fidget Hour. But I've dropped the Pumpkin off at my m…

Torture, Magic and Death of a Redskin

Apparently the car seat is the most evil device ever created to torture the baby! But my boobs... They are magic!

Thank you to all the women before me who have shared tales of what they've had to do to get a carseat-hating baby through a long car trip. I've now joined the legions of women who have put themselves in physical danger by angling myself over the carseat to get the baby a magic boob, all without the aid of a seat belt. But it was worth it when she drifted off to sleep...

And we had another rough night with the teething Pumpkin, but we made it through.

The same cannot be said for everyone. Sean Taylor, 24, a safety for the Washington Redskins, died early this morning after being shot yesterday. My and my husband's condolences go out to his family, friends and teammates, especially his 18-month old daughter. He will be missed by many.

How Life Has Changed

So, there I am on Black Friday, entering the mall with MIL, SIL and the Pumpkin. I love to shop, and I really need new clothes that fit me better. Regardless of what I weigh, my body shape has changed and my old clothes do not currently fit me right. There is not much in the small mall near my inlaws house, but they do have two department stores, and we've entered one.

But do I head to the women's department to look for nice work clothes and casual clothes that might fit me? Nope. Do I head to the jewerly counter to look for a little something for me or Christmas presents for family? Nope. Do I go to the men's section to look for gifts for my husband or family? Nope. Certainly I would go straight to the housewares to find fun things for the house, or again maybe Christmas presents (I really need to get presents!). Nope!

I immediately go the children's section and shop for clothes for the Pumpkin. She could get by without more clothes, but getting her more would lessen ho…

Cara Mama - Visiting Grandparents

Cara Mama,

As I tried to tell you and Daddy all night, I DON'T FEEL RIGHT! This whole teething thing sucks! My mouth and ears hurt, and it seems to be worse when I'm lying down. This is making it hard for me to take naps and sleep at night. Can't you do something about it? Like maybe hold me all night long and for every nap? You and Daddy have had over 30 years to sleep (minus 6 or 7 of the last 8 months)--certianly you can go a few nights without any sleep in order to hold me.

Also, I'm not sure if you realize it, but the place you are putting me to sleep? It's NOT MY BED! I'm having enough trouble sleeping as it is, and you guys are putting me in some strange crib. The chair you are nursing me in and Daddy is trying to rock me in? It's NOT MY GLIDER! It doesn't even rock. And you expect me to sleep with all this going on?

I will say that I do like all these people who are holding me, playing with me, and giving me all sorts of attention. I like them a lo…

Cara Figlia - Pumpkin's First Thanksgiving

Cara Figlia (Dear Daughter),

I'm so sorry about the long car trip down to your grandma and grandpa's house. I know that even in the convertible carseat, you get antsy and hate being confined, especially for long periods of time. I know this about you at 8 months, as you have made it abundantly clear to everyone in the car. Thank you for the very pleasant 2.5 hour nap you took in the morning (incredible!!!) and the 45 minute one you took in the afternoon. But there was an hour of pure misery for you, me, your dad and your dog. If I could have taken you out of the car and walked the rest of the way, I would have. But it was too far and the stops we made only prolonged the trip. Your daddy and I are trying to come up with another plan for the trip back.

But I'm so glad we made the trip for your first Thanksgiving. You've been a delight to your grandparents, aunts, uncles and the rest of the family. You seem to be having a great time and interested in everyone. You loved the…

Happy Thanksgiving

It seems fitting to start my blog on Thanksgiving. I am thankful for so many things, one of which is having a great online community of mommybloggers to read.

Of course the thing I am most thankful for this year is my beautiful 8-month old baby girl, the Pumpkin. Words cannot express how much joy she has brought into my life. The constant holding and rocking, the months of sleepless nights, the struggle with naps and everything else has been worth it. She is amazing.

I'm incredibly thankful for my husband, and for having met him 10 years ago. He is truly my perfect match. I'm also thankful for my family and his family, who are loving and supportive. I am thankful for all my friends in real life and online. I am very blessed.

I am thankful especially this year for fertility treatments and those who work in the field who are compassionate and helpful.

Well, this first post is especially sappy, but I guess that's what Thanksgiving brings out in me. Just wait until Christmas!

DC Area Meet Ups

Italian to English Translation

a = to
a pezzi = broken
amore = love
bambino/bambina = baby
bello/bella = beautiful
buono/buona = good/happy
cara = dear
compleanno = birthday
con = with
cuore = heart
curioso/curiosa = curious
felice = happy
figlia = daughter
grazie = thank you
il/la = the
mio/mia = my
molto/molta = very
nervosetta = fussy
per = for
primo/prima = first
ragazzo/ragazza (ragazzina) = boy/girl (little girl)
ti amiamo = we love you
ti amo = I love you
tuo/tua = your
tutti = all