Adventures in potty training; and the tale of the disappearing Bubby

It’s been awhile and so this is a 2-parter.

Part 1: Adventures in potty training

It may come as a surprise to exactly no one that potty training doesn’t happen overnight. And bribery only gets you so far. Mini M&M’s gave way to candy corn, which gave way to cookies, which were eventually replaced by $100 IMG_2134bills. OK, so we never got to that point, but the novelty of receiving a bite-size sweet in exchange for losing the luxury of just peeing or pooping your pants whenever you want, with no consequence or repercussions, apparently wore off. Most people have house-trained a puppy before, and while I realize it’s rather crude to compare Hannah to a pooch, I’m afraid our carpet has suffered a similar fate.

It feels like we’re through the worst of it though. From mid-September all the way through October we had a multitude of “accidents.” I use that term loosely because when the little stinker is smiling while soiling, well, it hardly seems like a mistake. There was the time she was hanging out in her undies watching Nemo or something when she stood up on the couch and before I could give the “sit” command she told her bladder to “release.” I saw what was happening and immediately scooped her up like a ladle in chili and futilely tried to stop the leak with my hand. You know when you want to make a hose spray and you don’t have a nozzle, so you use your thumb? Yeah, you get the picture. I think even Cleo got caught in the crossfire.

Want another one? Hannah’s in the kitchen playing with her “clay dough” (yes, in her underwear again…at this point we had pretty much decided her wearing pants at home was just increasing our laundry) when we heard and saw the tinkle start to sprinkle. This time I picked her up under her arms and held her out in fIMG_2500ront of me like a smelly infant and beelined to the bathroom. Sam was less than pleased as she watched Hannah leave a nice wet trail behind. Lesson learned was a big puddle on a hard floor is much better than a line of pee stretching across the room.

So let’s just say if we had one of those metal detectors that you see old guys in sitcoms using to sweep the beach, and that apparatus detected pee instead of metal, then the batteries would wear out in a heartbeat in our family room. Not to worry, though, future visitors of our home, we’ll be getting our carpets cleaned very soon and it will be like it never happened! At least until the carpet gets pulled up and we see yellow spots everywhere on the padding underneath. Hopefully that will be someone else’s discovery, as this carpet is new and will likely remain in this house longer than we will. Until then air fresheners and candles will do.

It’s now been more than 2 months since the potty training started and Hannah is no longer peeing every 20 minutes. She’s getting better at telling us when she needs to go. She’s still occasionally motivated by a candy corn or M&M, and a popsicle is a nice incentive as well, but accidents are truly just that for the most part and are fewer and farther between. Just in time for us to have another one come along and start the process over! Yay us.

 Part 2 The tale of the disappearing Buppy.

Hannah’s best friends are Ducky, Blanky, and Bubby. The first two are obvious – a stuffed duck and blanket that she’s had since her first Christmas when she was just 2 months old. However, her Bubby has been around since birth. We don’t know at what point she named her pacifier Bubby, but she did. We never called it that before and so you can imagine how she lost her mind one day asking for it by name and we didn’t know what the heck she was talking about.

They’ve been through a lot together, Hannah and Bubby. Through doctor’s appointments with what seemed like enough immunizations to protect a colt. As a comfort when we started having to leave her with strangers who became family when Sam went back to work. And as her daily and nightly sleep companion. Sometime a few months back we weened her down to just having it for naptime and bedtime, then it got to the point where she didn’t need it at daycare at all and we simply just enabled her at home to get her to go to bed without too much of a fight. All along though, Sam and I have both dreaded and looked forward to the day when Bubby would have to go bye bye for good. Little did we knoIMG_2393w it would be done for us without a hitch!

We read and talked to people about various methods of disposal. None really sounded like they would work, or we tried them and they didn’t work (0r maybe they would have but we just didn’t give them enough time…don’t judge us). Then someone at Sam’s work had an idea we liked – replace Bubby with a guppy. Well a Glo-Fish to be exact. We thought, that sounds fun, let’s give it a try. Then Hannah got sick, then she watched a movie with us that scarred her (Monsters, Inc…yeah yeah, in hindsight we should have known better), so we just kept putting it off week after week not wanting to rock an already nearly capsized boat.

Then the right moment came along, completely by accident. Grandma Deb came over to watch Hannah last Saturday night so we could go catch a late movie. We failed to leave a pacifier out on the counter or anywhere visible, so when IMG_2391it was time for bed and Hannah asked for Bubby, Deb told her it was gone. I can just imagine the confused and sad look on Hannah’s face, and it would have completely melted us I’m sure. Luckily, Hannah is much more rational when she’s with relatives that aren’t her parents, so she just asked a couple of more times, then meekly went to bed without Bubby for the first time in her short life. Of course, when she got up a 4am I gave it right back to her, but it was the breakthrough we needed.

The next day Sam and I held our ground during naptime and no Bubby was provided. It was then that we suggested to her it be replaced by a fishy. Hannah seemed to think that was a fair trade. Bedtime rolled around that night and again, “no Bubby, but you’ll get a fishy.” Lo and behold, it worked. It’s now been 5 nights of no pacifier and she’s pretty much stopped asking for it. Which is pretty much what we were told would happen and deep down what we expected would happen. However, we were skeptical – she was supposed to stay the night at my mom’s a few months ago during the summer when we neglected to pack a Bubby and she was inconsolable – so we didn’t have the highest of expectations.

Little Jake Jr. (not his real name) is due in March and he’ll most likely get his own pack of passies, so we’ll see how Hannah handles that. If we know her like we think we do, not only will she be pretty pissed about not having her Bubby, but I wouldn’t put it past her to start peeing on the floors again. She’s stubborn and feisty like that…should be interesting!

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November 20, 2014. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. Leave a comment.

M&M’s will never taste the same

7823DD17-AAD6-4F17-A473-89EC720AEB72_zpsrrrbmria (1)A few weeks ago, about a month after her 2nd birthday, Hannah started showing signs of being ready for potty training. She’d pull at her diaper and say something to that resembled “change diaper” and she showed interest in using the little pink toilet that we had sitting in the bathroom. One of my favorite stories that I’ll be telling until I can no longer talk is the first time she actually took off her pants and diaper and went into the bathroom because she knew she had to potty – she proceeded to put her hands on the wall, lean forward, and spread eagle over the toilet so she could “pee like daddy.” She was about as accurate as me too.

Because our beloved sitter Vicki wasn’t up for potty training toddlers (she had 2 others in her care) we decided to expedite the inevitable and enroll Hannah into daycare about a month and a half earlier than we planned. This wasn’t an easy decision, for many reasons, not least of which was the fact that we’d soon be paying about 50 more dollars a week at a daycare compared to what we were paying for in-home care. However, because it’s all about the munchkin and no longer about the Benjamins, we got her signed up and enrolled. After a series of snafus with our first choice (to put it nicely) we pulled a switcheroo, and now we’re loving her current “school.” (I know Joan will read this – we love your school as well and may end up there at some point 🙂 )

Hannah is now at Grace Point’s Kiddie Prep School and doing great. They are very hands-on with the potty training. We’re a week in and she’s having 1-2 accidents per day, usually one at school and one at home. It’s not going to happen overnight, we understand that, so it’s a fairly taxing ordeal. Every time we go through things like this I have more and more respect for my brother and sister-in-law – man, I just cannot imagine doing all this x2 with twins.

While the daycare is successful with getting Hannah to sit on the throne using stickers as collateral, we’ve resorted to mini M&M’s, fruit snacks, candy corn, whatever it takes. And talk about a rampant little mind – all I want her to do is take a leak and Hannah goes from being engrossed in Little Mermaid to dancing to dropping her drawers in the bathroom and sitting for half a second to running around the family room giggling pants-less to back to sitting on the potty for 3 seconds then to a meltdown about Ducky not being with her then another meltdown about Mommy not being in the room…then finally finishing that potty session. And this is every 30-45 minutes. Exhausting.

Something no one tells you until you’re in the thick of it is that it’s called “potty” training and not “potty and poop” training for a reason. That’s because apparently learning how to drop a deuce on a toilet is not the easiest thing for a 2 year old to grasp – even one that’s related to me! Not surprisingly, it’s much more comfortable, natural, and satisfying to just let it go in your diaper, or now in our case, undies. There really aren’t too many messier situations than changing a poo-filled pull-up diaper or size 4T underwear. It’s become second nature with the regular Pampers – just undo the velcro, lift the butt, and slide the diaper right out. Now, it’s much more complicated than that with pull-ups or panties. And by complicated, I mean shit gets everywhere. Maybe I’m just bad at it, but it gets on her legs, feet, my hands, the changing pad, the dresser, everywhere. A couple of times I’ve felt like the kid in Slumdog Millionaire who really wants that autograph.

We’re looking at the bright side, though. We really don’t want to have two in diapers at the same time. And the second one will be here before we know it (the OB’s crystal ball says March 10 as a matter of fact!)…so no pressure or anything Hannah. She’s well on her way, but we know there’s a long way to go, and this road isn’t exactly paved with gold.

September 9, 2014. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Uncategorized, Updates. Leave a comment.

KeyGate: Anyone seen my keys?

I’ve recently asserted that Hannah has a funnybone. What we didn’t realize is that she’s actually a serial prankster. Look at this photo. These keys were missing for a week before on a whim I decided to look closely at her toy collection to see if they were somehow mixed up in the bins. And there they are, sitting in the ball-shooter-upper-machine.IMG_1427

I have a couple of theories on why she did this.

  1. She’s protesting our comings and goings. We live fairly busy lives, I tend to overcommit to various activities, and there are times when we may not get to spend as much time at home with Hannah as we’d like. Now, I’d like to think we make up for that with the excessive amount of love, hugs, kisses, treats, and praise we shower on her daily. Maybe that’s not enough. Maybe she’s saying, “Hey parents, you think you can just come and go as you please, without my permission or blessing? Well think again.” Fortunately for us she’s not even 2 so she doesn’t understand the concept of having spares.
  2. She’s practicing to be a magician and this was a magic trick gone wrong. We have no idea when she took Sam’s keys from her purse or off the counter and placed them in the toy. Maybe she didn’t. Maybe it was just part of her act and she just made them disappear from spot A and reappear in spot B. Again, she’s not even 2, so we shouldn’t be surprised if the trick doesn’t work every time.

What I do know is replacing keys in the year 2014 is expensive. The dealerships should be ashamed at their prices. I’ve had to resort to Amazon to purchase a new key fob, and luckily a locksmith friend referred me to a guy who apparently has a machine that no other locksmith has within 3 states. It’s like we’re trying to reproduce the key to a damn spaceship.

People have been very helpful by the way. Someone suggested we have a hook to hang our keys on. Yep, have one of those. “Where did you have them last?” someone else asked. At home, exactly where the car that I drove them with is. It’s great that we have technology that allows us to unlock, lock, and start our vehicles from a distance. But by now shouldn’t they be able to do that without the actual key costing almost as much as a car payment? My guess is they can, but how would they make more money doing that?

I’m convinced the auto industry bailout was a hoax, GM actually got their finances straight by stealing everyone’s keys. On second  thought, they probably paid a bunch of mischievous toddlers to do the dirty work for them! Someone call Edward Snowden and let’s get to the bottom of this.

Some quick updates on Hannah as we approach her 2nd birthday:

  • She’s counting to 10 and even recognizes the numbers 1-9 out of order. We’re impressed by that. But we’re biased.
  • She’s piecing together the ABC’s and loves the song.
  • She sings Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and Let it Go quite often. And it never, ever fails to bring a smile to our faces.
  • She also loves Itsy Bitsy Spider, The Wheels on the Bus, Ring Around the Rosie.
  • She loves the piano. I hope she has a knack for music, that’s a talent Sam nor I have.
  • She weighs a little over 30 lbs and seems to tower over other kids her age and older.
  • It’s not all sunshine and roses. She’s got a temper like a rattlesnake and flips her demeanor by the minute, sometimes by the second.
  • There’s no greater sound in the world to Sam or me than her laugh. It absolutely melts me and I will resort to the goofiest, dumbest tactics to get it out of her.
  • She pretty much lives on mac n cheese, cheesy rice, and milk at home. Oh, she’ll eat just about anything at Vicki’s (her wonderful babysitter), grandmas’, or anywhere Sam and I are not. And she won’t let us put anything in her hair, yet she’d probably let Godzilla give her a ponytail. Yeah yeah, we know, she walks all over us, we’re working on it.

May 30, 2014. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. 2 comments.

$h!t hits the fan

First, let me apologize ahead of time for the impending salty language. We’re typically not vulgar people, but we are human. And every once in awhile, ok occasionally…fine, often times our words can be a little colorful. However, we understand that a toddler is very impressionable and a budding impressionist. As I’ve mentioned before, even as a sub-2 year old Hannah seems to have a genuine sense of humor. Which tickles me beyond words. But there’s a time and a place, and age-appropriateness, and at TargIMG_0769et the other night she mimicked my potty mouth and got a kick out of it. Sadly, so did I.

The kid loves her pacifier. But when she sees something she wants to eat or drink she tosses her passy aside and makes her demand. We try to do our parental duty and have her find the pacifier and hand it to us, then ask nicely with a please, but sometimes we get distracted. In this particular case Hannah and I were heading toward checkout and she requested some ‘nana, so I told her she needed to wait until we paid for them and got to the car. What I didn’t do was watch where the pacifier landed. Next thing I know we’re putting bags in the car, I pick her up out of the cart, and realize I don’t have the pacifier. And neither does she.

“Oh shit” I muttered. Barely above my breath. But being that she was 6 inches away from my face, paying full attention to me, and is a human tape recorder, she replied back “chit.” I did a double-take and she said it again, this time with a big smile, “chit. chit.” Now at this point I’m fighting back laughter, but I can tell she sensed my surprise and suppressed delight from the get-go. She had me at “chit.” Anyone who knows Hannah has to be smiling right now picturing the little shit cheesing while sweetly saying “chit.” She must have said it 5 more times from the time we went back in to get replacement pacifiers (she only had one left at home and we’re not yet prepared for the impending separation battle – don’t judge), to the time she was strapped back in her seat and we’re headed for home.

That was Tuesday night and I haven’t heard it out of her since, so we’re in the clear for now…but I know it’s just a matter of time before it happens again. We love that her vocabulary seems to double daily, but I don’t think we’re ready for a little Eddie Murphy just yet.

March 15, 2014. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings. Leave a comment.

(Unintentional) Violence is not the answer

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I know we’re not the only ones with a nearly two year old who can lose her mind at the drop of the hat for seemingly little or no reason at all. Hence these websites: reasonsmysoniscrying.com and themetapicture.com/why-my-kid-is-crying/. Funny stuff. And it’s pretty normal, from what we can tell, especially when they still can’t quite communicate verbally as clearly as we or they’d like. Hannah has had a few meltdowns lately, she’s been fighting a stomach bug and the discomfort and lack of appetite causes her to be crankier than usual, you know like the Snickers commercials.

However, I’m here to address a distant cousin of that behavior – the joy of causing mom and dad pain. Toddlers love cause and effect. I throw down my cup, mom or dad picks it up. I scatter food everywhere and Cleo comes scrambling. We do our best to not reinforce it, or worse, giggle, but it’s tough. But I’ve never, in my life, laughed through so much physical pain.

Here’s a rundown from just the last couple of weeks. Pulling mommy’s hair (to Hannah’s defense, there’s a lot there to grab!) causes a shriek. Grabbing daddy’s cheeks with both hands like a zombie grandma gets a loud “ow ow ow”! The past two weeks I’ve sported battle wounds from sharp little nails on my forehead, cheeks, and the back of the neck (riding the horse is fun!). She damn near poked my eyeball out while practicing anatomy identification. Every time it happens we try not to encourage it, but her adorable smile and infectious chuckle just melts us. We’re suckers and we know it. The worst of it, though, happened about 10 minutes before the Super Bowl this past weekend.

Sam was innocently helping Hannah pick up her books. As Sam lay there on her back Hannah walked up with “Time for Bed Sleepyhead“, a 1/2 inch board book that weighs a good 2-3 pounds, and gave it to mommy. Unfortunately, she didn’t just hand it to her, she dropped it with the binding straight down and Sam caught it with her face. Right on the nose. I was in the kitchen cleaning up and heard a little yelp and a meek “Jacob” and looked to see Sam rushing to the bathroom face in her hands. Hannah just smiled and watched having no idea what she’d done (at least we hope). I didn’t realize what happened until I went into the bathroom where, much to my concern, I saw blood everywhere. On the toilet. On the floor and the counter. Looked like a scene right out a movie that you wouldn’t watch past midnight. Later we saw it all over the light switch.

Luckily for Sam it just caught her right on the tip – easy for me to say because it wasn’t my nose, we all know how much it hurts to get hit in the sniffer – and caused a lot of bleeding, but evidently no breakage or serious damage. Of course Hannah went into hysterics because mommy was upset and in pain and couldn’t pick her up and daddy was rushing around getting towels and ice. After a few minutes the ladies of the house were calmed down and back to normal, but for a minute you’d think you walked into a barroom brawl!

We know we have a lot of work to do to curb the innocent, but painful  acts of our curious little hellion, and I’ve heard from those who have boys that Hannah’s antics are mild in comparison, but for right now one of our biggest struggles is suppressing the humor we find in her destructive ways. Who knows, the girl just might have a future in physical comedy, we just need her to smash watermelons and not our faces!

February 5, 2014. Tags: , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings. Leave a comment.

More Bam Bam than Pebbles

This one may piss off the ACLU, we could be facing litigation from the folks at Geico, and my knowledge of early mankind can certainly be called into question since it’s primarily based on TV and movies. However, I have a lot of reason to believe Hannah is the intellectual equivalent of a 20-year old male caveman. Just hear me out.

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She communicates through various grunts, groans, whines, whimpers, and wails, accompanied by the occasional point. Actual, audible and decipherable words are still few and far between. Don’t get me wrong, she’s building up quite an impressive vocabulary (to us), but very rarely does she use them yet without being prompted or encouraged. Why would you when a simple “unh?” or “ach!” will do? Pretty neanderthal-ish, huh?

She has very little regard for her own bodily waste. Correction, she has no distaste for it. Really, she finds it interesting and amusing. One of her favorite “games” is to get out of the bathtub, fight through me holding a towel like a linebacker in pursuit shedding a sluggish offensive lineman, and make a break for her bedroom. Immediately upon entry she turns around, looks back at me, grins and grunts. A half-second later there’s a little dark wet spot at her feet and a liquid streak down her inner leg. This is hilarious! To her. Very primitive if you ask me.

The most impressive thing she’s done recently, however, was discover that throwing something down on a hard floor causes it to either break, crack, leak or just do something different than it did before. Water cup with a tight lid and straw? Not much fun, barely leaks. But slam it down like Shaq on the kitchen tile and you can create yourself a nice little puddle. Can’t get the lid off your teddy grahams? Spike it, do the Icky Shuffle, and help yourself to a nice little snack. I joke, but it was actually really cool to see her figure this out for the first time. Pretty cute, too. But then it got old real quick.

That pretty much summarizes our parenting experience thus far – for every 10 seconds of genuine pride and amazement we feel when she learns something new on her own, we have 10 hours of trying to teach her to use

this new found power for good and not evil.

You know, after re-reading all this and giving it some thought, maybe I’m wrong. Unintelligible communications, potty humor, and breaking things for fun? Maybe a more appropriate comparison would be to a 21-year old college kid who recently discovered Jager bombs and penny pitchers. She reminds me a lot of some friends who attended IU, one of which is now doing really well in a highly paid profession. Either way, caveman or undergrad, she’s our little cutie and we wouldn’t trade her for anything. Well, at least until she discovers fire. Then we’re really in trouble.

November 24, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. Leave a comment.

Sometimes exhaustion brings the answer

IMAG1260Over the past few months Hannah’s had some changes in her sleep pattern. No surprise, right? Yeah, well, that’s understating it a bit. She basically relapsed back to how she was in the infant stage – for a while she absolutely dreaded and despised sleeping by herself.

It started innocently enough one Sunday night about 5 weeks ago. She woke up crying around 2 or 3 am, which was normal. I organized my one-man search party, found her pacifier, popped it in her mouth and headed back to bed, like I had done the previous 200 or so nights. Typically, she would just lie back down and go back to sleep without a fuss. Not this particular night, though. She spat out the pacifier like Sam feeding me a brussel sprout and started screaming. I gave her a couple of minutes then went back in, took her downstairs and got her back to sleep. No big deal I thought, this happens occasionally. Little did I know this was going to be the first of 3 straight weeks of frustrating, agonizing, exhausting and utterly defeating nights. It’s all a blur now, as most phases tend to be after the fact, but at the time those were some of the most challenging weeks we’ve faced in our short parenthood experience.

Every single night for those 3 weeks she was up 1, 2, even 3 times, shrieking, screeching and wailing like she was beyond scared, almost terrified and Sam and I took turns coming to the rescue. The only way to calm her down was to pick her up and hold her on the recliner, often with a bottle, which led to many nights of us half-sleeping with her on us. Oh, we’d try to return her to bed, but sometimes just the slightest movement would jolt her awake and into a rage, so back to the recliner we went. I even started setting the couch up as a bed and we slept there a couple of times instead of the chair. One thing we did avoid, and I’m really glad we did, was bringing her into our bed. That’s still sacred ground to us after 10pm!

We asked around and talked to people and some different theories were proposed – at one point we even thought maybe she was seeing ghosts! The most sensible answer seems to be a combination of separation anxiety – she hated waking up or falling asleep without us – combined with some bad dreams that were spooking her. I’m not sure what kind of nightmares her young little imagination can concoct, she’s just about as sheltered as humanly possible, so I’m guessing maybe she’s dreaming that she’s sucking a bottle and can’t get anything out or perhaps she’s being attacked by a kiwi – those things are kinda creepy if you ask me, weird hairy fruit.

Finally, after 3 weeks of this, I went into her room one night and instead of picking her up and heading downstairs I pleaded with her to go back to sleep. At first, I was leaning down eye level with her, then I sank to my knees, and finally just laid down next to her crib. What happened next? The little bugger lied down in her crib as close to the edge as possible, let out a little baby sigh (one of the greatest noises of all time by the way), and closed her eyes. I fell asleep for a few minutes and woke up with a crick in my neck, but with a smile on my face – I just had a feeling that the mighty night terror had been defeated! And of all the different things we tried, wouldn’t you know it that the simple of act of lying down out of desperate exhaustion was just what she needed. I’m sure she sensed our frustration and was probably just as tired of the routine as we were, and just wanted us close by.

The next couple of nights we repeated that process and she slept better than she had in a month. Lately, over the course of the past week or two she’s slept all the way through the night as many times as not, so progress has definitely been made. However, we’ve been humbled and tricked enough over these past 15 months to know that it’s going to change again sooner than later, but for now we’re just so grateful to get uninterrupted sleep a few nights a week!

Next, on Adventures of Hannah – bad mood, bad appetite, and giving mom a bad back! Stay tuned.

October 6, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. Leave a comment.

Things we learned after throwing a birthday party for a child for the first time…Part 1

Did you know…Latex balloons filled with helium do not float for 24 hours unless you specify that you need them to? We found this out the hard way in preparing for Hannah’s first birthday party. Thinking we could get ahead of the game, I went to Party City Saturday afternoon and had a bunch filled. When I got home I put them in the spare bedroom for safekeeping. On game day Sam went to get them and gasped at what she found: there they were, slumped pathetically on the floor, like scolded puppies with their ribbon tails between their legs. It was a shocking, confusing, heartbreaking and appalling scene. Just senseless, they were less than a day old. Later in the morning I went to Kroger to pick up the cake, ice, some other accessories and grabbed a half dozen more. It was then that I was enlightened to the 6-hour rule…apparently helium is a precious and rare gas these days, so they “water down” the air in the tank with oxygen, and you’re only guaranteed 6 hours of floating time. Complete rip-off, I know! Luckily for all the little balloon enthusiasts attending the party, the helpful helium tank attendant introduced me to “Hi-float,” which is apparently helium with a double-dose of Cialis, because it which lasts, much longer than 6 hours. Much to Hannah’s delight, those babies were still floating proudly today!IMAG1102

July 1, 2013. Tags: , , , , , . Observations and musings. 1 comment.

Walk this way!

Milestones are awesome. First smile. First tooth. First full night’s sleep! However, not every achievement is easily marked. For instance, what defines “walking?” Is it just a couple of consecutive steps? Or, perhaps it’s making it across the room without falling? We may not know the Imageexact date of when Hannah started walking, but she’s certainly doing it, and there’s no cuter thing in the world (to us) than watching her stagger around with her hands up and a big smile on her face like a drunken little T-Rex that just got her fingernails painted. Someone must have shown her footage of me stumbling home from the bars in Muncie because she walks just like her daddy!

We’ve been warned about the Pandora’s box that opens up when little tykes start trekking on two feet, but who actually comprehends what they’re being told when it comes to first-time parenting? It’s just so damn exciting to see them learn something new. Nothing is safe from here on out though…we already lost a laptop after it jumped off the kitchen table with the help of a flailing little hand. Her ability to grab a dangling cord while being whisked around the dining room on her Fisher Price race car was extremely impressive, I have to admit!

May 29, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , . Observations and musings, Updates. Leave a comment.

Can we have this to go please?

We recently discovered that an hour wait, a missed nap, and noisy, unfamiliar surroundings can quickly cause an 8 month old to go from happy and curious to agitated and restless to crying and pissed off in just a matter of minutes. OK, so we already knew that, but we’ve been smart and/or lucky enough so far to avoid such a situation…until recently, when Hannah made her first restaurant visit. We had a feeling that the long wait could be the first ingredient in a recipe for disaster, but the night started out just fine. The waiting area was packed and this lovely March weather pre photo IMAG0846-1_zpsb7b15e6f.jpgvented us from waiting outside, so we all (mom, Josh, Jill, Mariah, Monica and us) managed to carve out our own little section right in the path of the nice employees attempting to seat and serve tables. Hannah actually made it through the wait just fine, but we could tell she was getting a tired and hungry. The cute little squirt is a timebomb, and while Sam and I can usually cut the red wire before the timer hits zero, sometimes there’s stopping it. This was one of those times.

We had our bottle warmer plugged in behind the hostess station and it was ready about the time we were seated. Success. Then started my scavenger hunt. (Listen to this while reading the next few sentences) Head to the table with baby and baggage to help get Hannah seated in her high chair. Over to the bathroom to wet a washcloth. Back to the table to drop it off. Down to the hostess station to grab the bottle and bottle warmer. Return to the table to drop off the bottle. Go to the bathroom to wash of the pacifier that fell under our neighbor’s chair. Finally, I got back to the table and sat down to order with everyone. Hannah reluctantly took a few bites and sipped a little milk, but she was starting to get a little restless and wasn’t all that interested in refreshments. She didn’t finish the food or bottle, but she definitely wasn’t full. The fuse was lit and it was a quick burner. While to us it actually felt like hours, as I’m sure it did for our neighbors at surrounding tables, it was probably only 20-30 minutes of actual discomfort. Sam did her best to keep Hannah entertained, walking her around the restaurant in an attempt to distract and calm her. Meanwhile, I ate, cause that’s what I do best. In hindsight, we probably should have left the restaurant a little earlier and took our food with us. I finished mine, but Sam felt so bad for our neighboring tables that she barely ate…so hers came home in a container and she got to eat it cold a little later. Moms are the bomb. At the time, it was so loud in there that we could barely hear Hannah, so it didn’t seem like it could be bothering anyone. Sam begs to differ. We packed up and headed out. It was a delightful ride home, a screaming baby in the backseat and two flustered, frustrated parents in the front. All ended well though, we got her in her jammies and she took a bottle and passed out like nothing even happened. Short memory that one.

Lesson learned: baby’s first visit or visits to a restaurant should be when he/she is well-rested and during non-peak hours. There is a lot for them to process, all 5 senses are being stimulated at the same time. We had been avoiding doing too much in public for months with the flu being so nasty this year and Hannah only being half-vaccinated, so it’s something we needed to ease into. Well, that night was the equivalent of taking a high school freshman to a nightclub on spring break – too much to see, taste, hear, touch and smell for the first time. Luckily, Hannah didn’t get alcohol poisoning or fall off a balcony, she just shed a few tears and exercised her vocal cords a bit. No harm done!

March 31, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , . Observations and musings. Leave a comment.

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