Friday, April 29, 2011

Why the Silence?

It's been 14 days since I last posted.  I think the last time I went this long without writing was when I knew I was pregnant but was hiding it from the rest of the world.  No, I'm not knocked up again.  I just haven't been in a writing mood.  My Papa John isn't doing well.  So I've been having a lot of family time lately.  All my uncles and aunts on my mom's side have been in town on and off over the past week and a half, so on the bright side I've gotten to spend time with them.  But then there's obviously the not so bright side looming above us all.  It's hard to hug my grandpa goodbye each time I leave him, knowing it might be the last time he gives me a kiss and sweet smile.  I'm tearing up now just thinking about it.  And I can't help but be consumed with thinking about mortality and what is important in life.  And I find myself hugging my family a little stronger than usual and holding on to Mr. Cob's hand a little tighter and rocking Lukas to sleep a little (or a lot) longer than "need be".

I know the next few weeks will have some more tears.  But I also know there will be smiles mixed in.  And laughs as the family comes together to celebrate Papa John's long, wonderful life.  And it is definitely a life to be celebrated.   

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Friday, April 15, 2011

App Happy

I'm obsessed with photography iphone apps.  I am.  Then again, I'm easily obsessed with things.  It's usually a short-lived romance.  I'm also easily distracted.  So for the moment I'm loving all the things you can do to your photos with different apps.  And if I knew how to use them properly I'm sure there are many more cool things I could do. 

So here was my original photo:

Now here's the pic after using the "TOONPaint" App:

And then the Picture Effect Magic App:

And Instagram (maybe my favorite photo app):

And since Lukas' hair seems to be growing on the slow side, I thought this MakeOver app was fun:

And finally the Tap Tap Tap Camera+ App:

Which one is your favorite????

2 Parents, 2 Ways

The little man's fruncles are in town visiting.  What's a fruncle you ask?  A fruncle is an honorary uncle.  A close male friend of a child's parents.  Friend-Uncle = Fruncle.  Get it?  I don't know who coined the phrase, either Mr. Cob or one of the fruncles, but regardless, some one said it and it stuck. 

Mr. Cob's two best childhood friends are the two fruncles who are visiting right now.  Mr. Cob has been looking forward to their visit for months.  And now they're here.  Today they are home brewing cherry beer while I go to work.  They decided to keep the little man at home for the day rather than send him to school.  I asked Mr. Cob if he was sure he could handle watching him, brewing beer and doing whatever else guys do.  He reassured me that they'd be fine by telling me there were three of them, and one of Lukas, so not to worry.

My first thought was to worry.  The fruncles are both single and kid-less.  Neither of them have spent too much time around a baby, so I don't know how much help they'll be in the "taking care of baby" part.  But Mr. Cob will be home all day.  Mr. Cob is Lukas' father.  So I shouldn't be concerned at all about Lukas spending the whole day in his daddy's care.  But a small part of me is.  And I realized its because Mr. Cob has not spent an entire day with Lukas alone yet.  I guess I fear he doesn't know what to do with him.  But he's a smart man and what he doesn't know, he can figure out.

If I'm really being honest, the problem is that I know they'll be fine, but I'm pretty sure Mr. Cob won't do things with Lukas the way that I would do them.  And I need to be OK with that.  I need to realize that Mr. Cob is Lukas' daddy and he loves Lukas just as much as I do.  He will do what he thinks is best for him.  And while his parenting style may be different than mine, that's OK.  (And yes, you can have a "parenting style" with a 5 month old.  Really, you can.)  Lukas won't be harmed or worse off if he naps in his swing rather than in his crib.  And his belly will be full whether he eats his cereal at 10am or 11:30am. Or if he doesn't eat cereal at all and just has milk.

I need to relinquish control and give Mr. Cob the opportunity to take care of him.  I don't think I do this enough.  For instance in the middle of the night if Mr. Cob goes downstairs to try to soothe Lukas back to sleep, I can't help but stare at the monitor and eventually go down there and "help".  I'm sure this is frustrating to Mr. Cob.  He doesn't even have the chance to succeed.  I guess I always think that I'm right and that I know what is best.  But in reality, I don't.  I'm just guessing most of the time.

But today is different.  Today Mr. Cob is on his own.  I'm not there even if he does need or want my help.  I'm forced to stay away by virtue of distance.  I can't step in if I think Mr. Cob isn't doing something "my way".  I know they'll be fine, but oh what I wouldn't give to be a fly on the wall!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Weight Weigh-in

As I've mentioned many times before, I gained a "few" pounds when I was pregnant with Lukas.  Maybe with my next pregnancy I'll be a cute pregnant girl, but this time I was just gigantic.  I'm 5'4 and tipped the scales at over 200 pounds by the end.  Yup, I was huge.
So in an effort to whittle down to my pre-baby body, I decided to join Weight Watchers back in the fall.  You can read all about the ins and outs of WW on their website, but this is the gist: You are given a certain amount of points each day, plus a lump of "extra" points for the week and you earn even more points for your activity.  All foods are given a point value based on the fat, protein, fiber and carbs in the food.  So you can eat whatever you want, with the goal of not using more than you daily points.  The extra points and activity points can be split up during the week or used all at once on a splurge meal (or wine drinking extravaganza for those of us who like wine...just keeping it real folks).
As a nursing mother, I'm not supposed to restrict my caloric intake or "diet" or I'll run the risk of having all the milk dry up.  This wouldn't be good for my goal of nursing for a full year.  Luckily, WW takes nursing into consideration when determining your point allotment for the day.  For example, my friend at work on WW gets 29 points plus points a day and I get 43.  So I'm not losing weight as fast as someone who is not nursing, but that's OK with me.  Also, you are "supposed" to eat all your points each day so as not to deprive yourself, which isn't much of a problem for me.
I started WW in December, but didn't really commit to it until January.  The decadent food during the holidays was too enticing to give up (and my mother-in-laws almond cookies - they're amazing and I ate like 15 a day.  Yes, 15).  On January 2nd I weighed 171.8 pounds (so for those of you counting, I lost over 30 pounds in the first two months after Lukas was born - 8 of those pounds was the baby and then there was the excess water, etc.).  And now today, after 3 months of weight watchers, I'm down to 147.4 - that's 24.4 pounds since January. And it's not from working out.  (Remember, I'm taking care of a baby and being a lawyer and wife, yada yada...and I'm not one of those wonder women who can do it all.  If you are one of those people, I hate you.  Just sayin.)  WW really does help with portion control and making you aware of what you are eating.  I religiously write down EVERYTHING that I eat on the website (I have the iphone app that makes tracking my food really easy).  I now think about what I'm eating and consider whether or not its worth it.
I have about 20 more pounds until I reach my goal weight.  But I have less than 10 pounds to lose until I hit my pre-baby weight, which is really exciting.  I think I can get there in about two months, if not sooner since I committed to a workout routine this week.  Lukas is now going down to bed around 8pm every night.  So I have at least 2 hours before I turn in that I can work out, or if he has a good night, I can get up in the morning and jog.  We have a treadmill, hand weights, a stability ball and lots of workout DVDs.  So I have no excuse.  And I'm really motivated with the summer coming and the fact that I'm in a friend's wedding in 6 weeks.  I also would really like to be able to wear all the clothes in my closet again.  I'm already in my old skirts (yay!), but the pants, although they do button, are just too tight.  The stuffed sausage look is never in fashion.
So here's to losing the rest of the weight and getting fit.  I'll keep you posted on how its going...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Lukas' Newest Friend

Lukas and I spent the weekend with this sweet little lady:

Isn't she precious? She's the new baby girl of one of my best gals from law school. I loved getting to meet her and spend some time with her momma. As an added bonus my two other favorite law school ladies were there too. It's amazing what a relaxing weekend with your girlfriends can do for your soul. All the gabbing and relaxing were so exhausting that my little man decided to start sleeping through the night while we were away! Just another plus to a fantastic weekend.

I wish all my girls lived in the same city, but it just ain't so. But this makes our trips together more meaningful. And the next time we'll be together we'll be 3 bridesmaids and one stunning just about six short weeks!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Five Months Old

My little man is 5 months old today!  Time sure is flying.  We don't go back to the doctor until the end of this month, so I don't have "proper" stats on him, but here's a brief highlight of what's going on with him:


Weight: roughly 15.5 pounds (he was at 15.2 like a week ago, so I'd guess he's at least gained 3/10 of a pound in a week, maybe? who knows)

Height: comes up to about his daddy's knee if "standing"- I don't know what this equates to in inches, but he seems tall for his age...

Head size: round and cute - everyone comments on how spherical his head is.  I'll take this is a a good sign.  Again, no clue how many inches it is

Drinks: maybe 30-40 ounces of breastmilk a day (we're averaging 3 5 ounce bottles at daycare  school and then I nurse him 3-5 more times a day and so I can only guess how many ounces he gets per nursing), oh and he can hold his own bottle!

Eats: Yummy brown rice cereal mixed with breastmilk 2-3 times per day...and LOVING it.

Sleeps: 2-3 naps a day (he's a great napper, but is all over the place as far as time or lenght of nap, the only consistency is that he'll go down for a nap usually within an hour and a half of waking up); at night he's now sleeping GREAT (as of the past three days...three days is enough to create a pattern/trend, right?!?  I may jinx myself here) - he goes down around 8pm and can now go until 3am - 5am without needing to eat again.  If he wakes up in the middle of the night he eventually just dozes back to sleep.  Last night I caught him staring at his ceiling around 3:30am - not crying or fussing, just staring - I think he sees dead people. )

Other stuf that only family will find interesting: He rolls from front to back and back to front.  He loves tummy time and pretty much always rolls onto his stomach immediately if you lay him on his back.  He loves to stand up either in his exersaucer, doorway jumper or just on mommy or daddy.  He can lift himself up onto all fours and is good at scooting backwards, but not so much forwards.  He seems very interested in the cat and dog - grabing the dog's hair petting Wrigley when she's close by and staring at the cat in awe.  He's a very smiley guy and has a generally happy disposition. 

Talks: We have a babbler on our hands and I swear that he said mama last night.  I really think he did, although I fully admit he just muttered the sounds and had no clue that it had any significant meaning.  So yea, I don't think that counts.

Teeth: two bottom middle teeth have popped through

Hair: not really existent - he does have a little fuzz, but we still can't tell what color it will be - my guess is light brown

Clothes: He's wearing size 6 months - he doesn't fill them out width wise, but he's almost busting through the seams lenght wise.  He must follow after Mr. Cob's height!!!

So that's our little man right now.  He is amazing and so lovable!  Happy 5 month bday buddy!!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Rice Cereal Plus BoobyMilk EQUALS Um, Um Good

And I thought my kid wasn't ready to eat "real" food.  Mark this one down in the book of Things Mommy Was Wrong About. (I'm sure it'll be a long, long book after a few years...I'm still waiting on the baby instruction manual to arrive in the mail.) It really shouldn't be shocking that Lukas is a food lover considering he is my son.  And it's no secret to anyone who knows me that I love food.  I can get especially ornery if I go too long without eating.  I'd never make it as an anorexic.  Binge eater, perhaps.  Anorexic, never.

Ok, where was I?  Oh yes, the kiddo.  So we're on Day Six of eating rice cereal. He's now eating it at "school" in the morning with his first bottle and then at home for dinner.  I'm planning on sticking with just rice cereal for another few days, mainly because I'm heading out of town this weekend with the babe and figure I shouldn't make any sudden dietary changes when an airplane is involved.  An airplane pooping incident is not something I want to experience just yet, if ever.  I'm thinking next week or the following week we'll add in some vegetables or maybe a different kind of cereal.  And on the plus side, Lukas has slept great the past two nights - only waking up once to eat!  I'm not sure if this can be attributed to the additional chow, but I'll take it, whatever it's from!  (I think the worst of the teething, for now, is behind us - his two bottom teeth have cut through the gums now.  If he would open his mouth long enough for me to take a picture I would, but it ain't happening.)

I did snap some pictures of him eating last night.  The whale got the worst of it...

Blowing Bubbles

Mama, I might burst...too much cereal!

Contemplating the whole "spoon" thing.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Just Like My Mum

A friend gave Lukas a book called "Just like my mum" and it's about a lion cub and his mum. It's one of my favorite books to read to Lukas. Mainly because, well, I'm his mum.

I snapped this pic of him napping last week. He naps just like his mum- on his back, both hands above his head. I've slept like this my whole life. It makes me smile when I see my little boy sleeping like this too. Everyone says he looks just like Mr. Cob, but have no fear, he has plenty of my quirks.

Monday, April 4, 2011

A few more "Firsts"

We've had a few big "milestones" the past couple of days.  Three, in fact.

The first occurred last Thursday night.  Mr. Cob rarely has to travel for work, but last week he had to fly up to Philadelphia and cover two hearings for one of the partners in his firm.  His first hearing was at 9:30am Friday morning, so he had to fly up Thursday night.  Which meant Lukas and I would be here alone.  Which meant I would have to spend the night alone with Luke for the first time.  As I've mentioned before, I'm a little bit of a wimp when it comes to being by myself.  I've gotten better the past couple of years, but I still am usually a nervous nelly when Mr. Cob is away and I get a horrible night sleep.  So you can imagine how I felt the first night alone with Lukas would go.  My sweet dad offered to come into the city and stay with us, but I decided I needed to be a big girl and stay alone with the babe.  And to my surprise, I honestly didn't get scared once and slept the entire night (and by entire, I mean in 3-4 hour little man didn't magically sleep for 10 hours in a row).  So milestone number 1 was more of a mommy milestone than a Lukas milestone.

The second milestone to occur has been in the works for a few weeks now and finally came to a head this weekend.  Lukas' first pearly white tooth cut through the gums!  (I am much more excited than he is about this.)  His bottom middle two teeth are coming in, but so far only one of them has broken through.  He's been drooling like a madman for weeks now and constantly has either his hand or some toy in his mouth to relieve the pressure.  I think his gums are quite swollen and he's in some serious pain, but we're trying to manage it as best we can by switching between Tylenol, Ora-gel and as of today, homeopathic teething pellets (which seem to have worked better than anything).  I'm hoping we get through the worst of it quickly.  I do not like seeing my little man in pain.

And our third big milestone happened on Saturday.  Lukas had his first taste of solid foods!  After much internal debate, we decided to go ahead and feed him some organic brown rice cereal mixed with breast milk.  He LOVED it and kept banging his hands on the high chair demanding more.  I now feel silly for worrying so much about starting him on food.  He ended up with about half of the cereal on his face and bib, but I think he did swallow a little cereal as well.  We followed up with an encore performance Sunday morning and evening and again tonight, thickening the cereal a little each time.  I had hoped that with this additional "substance" he might sleep longer at night, but so far no such luck.  He's actually had the worst couple of sleep(less) nights the past three days, but I think that's due to the teething and a growth spurt.  My plan is to stick with just the rice cereal for at least a week and then move on to some pureed veggies - perhaps he'll share in my love of sweet potatoes!  And of course we snapped some pictures of this monumental event, which I'll upload soon...they're quite hilarious.

Spring To Do

Mr. Cob is big on making lists.  I think he likes having a clear cut plan of what needs to be done and then crossing off things as we go.  We had a pretty big "to do" list before Lukas was born and managed to get just about everything accomplished.  Well we have a new list.  Mr Cob even asked that I publicly announce the list on the blog so as to hold us accountable.  (Although, he should know by now that my public declarations do not make me any more likely to stick with something...for examples, refer to my new years resolutions and 30 books challenge - two public declarations to do something, two failures to follow through...)
Numero Uno on the Spring To Do List has been on the "Big Swan House List" since we moved in to our house over two years ago: Fence in the backyard.  Mainly so Wrigley has a place to run free and isn't cooped up in her crate all day.  As of Friday mid-afternoon, we are now the proud owners of a new wooden fence.  It is awesome!  Wrigley, however, has not yet realized that she's allowed to run free in said newly fenced in yard.  We've "trained" her so well to just go down the stairs, do her thang, and come back in the house, that she is still following her trained behavior.  Slowly I think she'll understand that the backyard is now her playground, for real.
So here's our new Spring To Do List:
  1. Catch up on laundry - yes, the laundry had gotten so out of hand that this made it to the major to do list.  I think we did about 7 loads over the weekend and still have roughly 5 to go.
  2. Clean laundry room - See #1 for part of the reason the laundry room was out of control.  The other problem is that our laundry room doubles as a linen closet, triples as the cat's "home base" and quadruples as our luggage storage closest.  You'll be happy to know we got this under control this weekend.
  3. Clean side of yard with air-conditioner - for lack of a better word, it looks kind of junky right now
  4. Build or buy doghouse for Wrigley
  5. Figure out lawn stuff - as in, our front lawn needs some help in the grass should be green department and our backyard needs some serious love
  6. Fix door holes - Mr. Cob replaced the doorknobs in the guestroom, Lukas room, the downstairs bath and one other door a few months back.  In doing so, he had to take out the really old hardware and it left holes in the doors that need to be filled in, sanded and then painted.  Not a big task, but big enough that we keep putting it off.
  7. Fix door jam in basement - we bought a rubber door bottom (and yes, that's its official name) for our door that needs to be attached and the wood around the door may need some tlc
  8. Get two hose corrals - we've allowed our hoses to lay haphazardly in the yard, but no more. Problem solved this weekend.
  9. Gravel under deck - I had grandiose plans to tile/brick/stone this area and add a table or something to this effect. Perhaps even a lower deck.  This is a crazy idea that would cost too much money than its worth.  But we do need to stop it from being the mud pit it currently is.  Solution: gravel.
  10. (long term to do): buy new chair for living room - we have this hand-me-down black leather chair that doesn't match the decor, so I bought a green slip cover for it which does match, but the slip cover doesn't stay put and the cat has ruined it and it's a huge eyesore that I'd like to replace
  11. (long term to do): new end table for living room - again, we have a hand-me-down wooden end table whose top is somewhat warped and the lamp is never sitting even.  It annoys me.
  12. (long term to do): paint guest room/stair case/laundry room/office
  13. (long term to do): remove pond - there's this old broken down pond next to our driveway that has got to go.  It's not kid friendly, or dog friendly.
  14. (long term to do): repave driveway - it's cracked and I want to expand it but feel like this is going to be expensive?
  15. Move coffee table before Lukas starts crawling - it has sharp edges and is very not kid friendly
  16. Organize Lukas' bookshelves - There is no organization going on with the bookshelves at the moment.  It stresses me out to look at.
  17. Organize office - Our office is a disaster right now.  It needs major help.  I'm not even sure where to begin, but my end goal is to have a designated place for mail to be opened, bills to be paid, etc.
  18. Pick out paint color for basement and then paint said basement
  19. Plan what to do, if anything, with dark area of basement
  20. Power wash screened porch - DONE AS OF YESTERDAY
  21. Power wash the back deck - DONE AS OF YESTERDAY
  22. Rematch front beds
  23. Steam clean Lukas room and upstairs and then eventually replace the carpet in both areas
  24. Uproot front bushes - DONE AS OF YESTERDAY
So we're getting there, slowly.  And once we knock all these items off the list, I'm sure there will be a new list ready to go... it's a vicious cycle.