Thursday, January 14, 2010

A bundled up little bug...

It's been cold...really cold in Nashville.  Granted, I'm originally from Iowa and it's 10 times colder up there, so when I complain to my family that it's 21 degrees out, they say, "That's a flippin heatwave!" I was talking with my mom last week and she said, "Yeah, we are supposed to get into the 30's next week!" When I was a kid I remember seeing people walk around in shorts when it got up to 30 because it felt so much warmer than the -27 we experienced a few days before. 

Introducing Isaac to winter garments has been a bit of a challenge.  The kid doesn't like hats nor does he like anything on his hands, which makes gloves out of the question.  When I was getting him ready to head out the door for church on Sunday, I looked at him and said, "OK buddy, you're going to have to buck up and deal with wearing a hat because it's too cold not to." Much to my surprise, he kept his hat AND his hood on. 

My parents got Isaac a hat that we refer to as his "Grumpy Old Men" hat.  It has flaps that cover his ears and a strip that goes around his chin to keep the sucker on.  This strap pushes his cheeks together all the more and, heaven help me, I nearly pulled off to the side of the road from laughing looking back at him in the mirror.  He just sat there looking out the window with his hat on, which had been pushed down slightly so he was pushing his head back so he could see. 

On the way home the chin strap flipped up and went into his mouth. Isaac just went with it and sucked on it the entire way home.  Way to deal with it pal :) 

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Oh butter, how I love you...

My mother has often said that Norwegian food is just a vehicle for butter.  This is very true.  If you have not encountered Norwegian food, it's very white, very bland, and dripping with butter every chance it can get.  I've often told my husband the only color in Norwegian food is if a vegetable is included in the dish.  It's true. 

I'm not sure if I come by my love of butter naturally, though my Norwegian blood, or what, but ooohhhh my, my, my.  I do love me some butter. 

About two months ago Marcus and I watched the glorious movie Julie and Julia, which I fell in love with.  I was thrilled to see that Julia Child was a lover of butter as well.  Being that I loved the movie and really want to become a better cook (or I just fell for the massive marketing push for the cookbooks, biographies, etc., of Julia Child...I'm such a sucker) I bought Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  My dear readers, I with this book. 

It has taken me quite a while to actually enjoy cooking.  Four years to be exact because, well, that's how long we have been married.  I started cooking due to the fact that there was no way we could afford to eat out all the time and I wanted to have healthy foods around the house.  So I started off small, visiting the Food Network website daily, watching some online videos, and stepping out to grab the cooking bull by the horns.  Now, I must say, I really enjoy it. 

I know that French food is considered the 'end all be all' of cooking and, by some snobby foodies out there, the only way to go.  By purchasing Julia Child's cookbook, I felt like this was a big step into becoming a "good cook" or something like that. 

So I went through every page...all 500 plus pages.  Oh the butter that was involved with almost EVERY dish!  DIVINE!! I told Marcus I was so excited to try some of these out.  I started off simple with a butter basted strip of sirloin that I got for our steak salads.   Granted, I understand that "butter basted" meat completely counteracts the actual act of eating a salad, but I digress.  It was fantastic.  Then I moved on to a lemon butter chicken which was like the French's version of fried chicken.  Need I say more?? 

So here I am...up to my eyeballs with glorious butter filled dinners that are so good I can hardly see straight.  I told Marcus that we would only be able to make one of these recipes once a week since they were so rich.

Now, I take that back.  We might need to make that once a month. 

On Sunday I went to get dressed for church and, wouldn't you know it, my pants didn't fit. 


So, for now, I bid Julia a sad good-bye until Mama can get her act together.  Or resist big portions.  Or get off my butt and actually work out.  Blerg. 

Friday, January 8, 2010

Here she goes again....

Let's all do a universal eye roll here because I'm going to be talking for a moment about, you guessed it, baby poop.  I feel like I've talked about it quite a bit lately, but maybe those were conversations in my head rather than multiple posts on my blog.  Man, I need to get a life. 

Anyway, this is a quick one and it makes me laugh. 

This might sound weird, but Isaac is starting to feel more like a human.  He understands when I say, "Where is the green ball?" and he goes over and gets the green ball.  Or when I say, "Clap your hands!" he puts his hands together and shakes them up and down.  It's like he finally "gets us" if that makes sense.  He's so much fun. 

When I change a poopy diaper, for one reason or another, I started saying, "PPPEEEWWW!!  That stinks!" or "ICK!  That's gross!" mainly because, well, it's gross.  But Isaac has started to laugh, quite hard, when I say this.  It's like he's thinking, "You bet it is lady!!  It's GROSS!!  AND I KNOW IT!" It's like he gets how stinky and smelly it is.  Maybe that and the fact that he's overjoyed that he doesn't have to deal with it until he has to master the big bad potty training monster for a few years.  Oh the joys of being a kid. 

But big things happened last night...Isaac took 5 steps all by himself!  We even got it on video.  Feel free to partake:

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Lewis & Lola...

Dogs are a good prep course to having kids.  Especially puppies, who can sometimes be more high maintenance than a baby.  Before we were even pregnant a gal that we met at church asked if we had kids, to which I replied, "No, not yet.  But we have two dogs." She responded by saying, "Dogs are even more work than kids!  If you can handle a dog you can handle a kid."

Marcus and I talked quite a bit about how having dogs was a good way to get ready for a baby.  Some people laugh at us is an animal and the other is a human.  True, but they are both hard work.  I think having a dog, especially our first who was 7 weeks old when we adopted her, was a good introduction to taking care of a kid.  I know many eyes must be rolling, but it's true for us. 

Enter in our two mutts...Lewis and Lola.  Lola is the black dog and Lewis is the strawberry blond.  Both are absolute gems and we adore them.  It was quite a shock to them when Isaac entered the scene because they weren't the center of attention anymore.  I feel bad that they get a bit neglected at times and don't get to snuggle up to us as much as they used to, but they are doing just fine...believe me.

So I thought I would attach a recent picture of them.  This is from our trip to Florida.  I have no idea how Lewis thought this position was comfortable, but he was pretty loopy on some pills that we had to give him for his motion sickness.  They are hilarious. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

What a boob...

We are in the home stretch of weaning Isaac.  Truth be told, I'm rather sad to see this sweet time with him go.  Granted, if you would have told me that I would say this when he was a month old I would have laughed in your face.  Isaac didn't take to breast feeding as quickly as some do, which was quite the humorous affair, though not at the time. 

We had to consult with a lactation specialist early on due to the fact that Isaac had a kung-fu grip on my boob and wasn't allowing milk to flow, which hurt like HELL.  I remember trying to feed him in the hospital for the first time.  The nurse brought him in and tried to show me how to latch him on.  That is when we discovered Isaac's "power suck" which made my toes curl up and yelp like a hurt puppy.  "Seriously?  It's supposed to be like this??  GOOD LORD HELP ME!!!"

God answered my prayers with one of the craziest women I have ever met.  Her name is Annie and her life is boobs.  Don't get me wrong, she is BRILLIANT and helped so much, but she's insane.  I say this with great affection because there is no way I could do what she does. 

I've never been a good "naked" person, unlike some gals I have known in my lifetime who have no problem walking around the house naked.  I went into having a baby knowing that the old pregnant bod was going to be on display quite a bit and came to terms with it.  But nothing prepared me for Annie coming into my room, opening my my top and going after my boob with little as much as saying, "Hi!  My name is Annie."

Every time Annie came into the room there was little small talk before going right for my top and going for the goods.  She was very sweet with Isaac, though, being a first time mom and seeing her try to maneuver his head to be where she wanted it on my boob, I would sit there thinking, "Gracious lady!  Gentle!  He's a day old!" But she would get him latched on and eating like a champ.  If only Isaac knew that Annie wasn't the magic pill that he needed every time he ate because when she left he would go back to his old way of eating. 

As you can see from the pictures I have posted Isaac caught on to breast feeding quite well. QUITE well...he's a healthy little nugget with energy to boot.  Annie would be proud.

If there is a bit of wisdom that I could pass along to other Moms who are in the beginning stages of breast feeding, I'd say give it at least a month.  A dear friend of mine said that to me when I was in the throws of breast feeding hell.  After a month, seriously almost to the day, it was a breeze.  Heck, you might even enjoy it...I dare you to.


Monday, January 4, 2010

Aaannnd, here we go....

Ah-ha!!  First post of 2010...four days into the New Year.  We are on top of things. 

I mentioned a little project that I'm going to embark on this year in my last post and now I'll go into a little more detail.  I'm actually pretty excited about it because it involves organizing things (even the word "organization" makes my fingers tingle) but it's also a new adventure and challenge.  Being someone who needs to name everything (seriously, I've named every single one of Isaac's stuffed animals) I haven't come up with a clever name for this project, so that is shortly coming. 

Since we are quickly approaching Isaac's first birthday on the 27th, I've been thinking back over the past year with quite a bit of amazement.  Not only did it go by freaky fast, but it also comes with the realization that we actually made it.  We did it!  We survived the first year of having a kid!

The first few months I didn't think I would make it, to be perfectly honest.  Marcus was (and is) my rock and he was amazingly encouraging and comforting to me in those first hormone filled, blindingly tired months.  I was up to my eyeballs in estrogen, at the time I hated nursing and I would much rather ripped my boobs off than deal with the pain of this 10 pound creature gnawing on me, he wasn't sleeping, and I wanted to punch the next person who said, "Oh, isn't motherhood just wonderful?"

At the time, no it wasn't.  I'm just being honest here people.  It was incredibly hard and I was scared to death that I would never love it like I should have.  Thankfully, I absolutely love it now.

I know you might question if I'm high when I say this, but I kind of miss those first few months.  Mainly because I'm on the other side of it now and I would be able to say with full assurance, "You can do this.  You will make it out alive...and with your boobs fully attached."

As women I think there is a thread within our DNA that makes us think that we need to have it all and do it all right away.  I went back to work three weeks after having Isaac, which was insane.  Granted, I work from home, but it was still adding a lot of stress on my already recovering body and dealing with a paper thin emotional state.  I thought I needed to be back at it, back to my normal weight, have my house clean and sparkling, and my life in order just weeks after having a baby. 

This is when my mom's wisdom and amazing help finally sank into my hard head.  She simply said, "Cut yourself some slack."

Simple words, yes, but oh so profound. 

It was then that I decided I needed to give myself a year.  An entire year with this kid to not only get my footing (because, let's be honest gals, it takes a while), to get to know this little guy, and to get to know myself again after having him because, as much as we sometimes don't like to admit it, we are different than what we used to be. 

So we are at that year mark and I'm ready to get things back in order.  I'm ready, with Isaac and Marcus in hand, to reclaim some order, some sanity, and some more of who I am now that I'm a Mom.  It's not a self-centered time by any means.  It's seeing how everything (marriage, baby, house, work, friends) can work in harmony together without letting our marriage, child, home, or even myself go by the wayside. 

My challenge is to document reclaiming life a year after having our first baby.  Now that I have regained some footing, I'm ready to get things back in order.  It's not going to be perfect by any means, and that's totally fine.  Add to that our goal to sell our house within the next year and, boy oh boy, do we have some work to do.  Marcus is creating a separate website for me to document all of this, so I'll be sure to post that once I get that in order. 

I'll have the purpose of this challenge in a more concise manner on the side...this explanation was more of a "throwing it out there" to get things rolling.  I'm one that needs accountability and, in a weird way, this blog & website will be my accountability.  I'll share ways and ideas that we have come up with to make our house more orderly & organized, how we have changed things to get the house ready to sell, new & inexpensive ways to entertain and educate Isaac, and how I'm finding my own voice, style, and identity again as a Mom.  Should be a fun ride.

Anyway, thanks for sticking with this long post!  Sorry if it feels more like a ramble rather than a fully thought out idea.  I'm getting my thoughts and ideas in order and I hope to get this rolling this week.  I'll keep you posted! 

Until then, I'll leave you with the strangest sleeping position I've found Isaac in. Not sure how or why he was like this, but he was obviously comfortable.