Sunday, November 27, 2005

¡hola! ¿cómo estás?

¡hola! ¿cómo estás? ... that is the beginning of my very little knowledge of espanol.

i once worked with a man from mexico. he was a physical education teacher in mexico, and when he came to the US he was a hotel housekeeper ... WTF? we were "smoking buddies" for the most part. my buddy spoke no english, and i spoke well ... not enough spanish to have a conversation. so we smiled and nodded until one day he showed me that he was able to read and write english fluently. how cool! so, from the point forward we would write on a napkin back and forth during our smoke breaks. usually just a simple conversation, and i would proudly say "adiós" as we parted. he was such a sweet man, i wonder where he is today?
i really wish i could speak a second language fluently, and preferably spanish. it seems to make the most sense, and not just because i live in texas.

did you know??? spanish is the third most spoken language on the planet. it is spoken as a first language by about 352 million people, or by 417 million including non-native speakers (according to 1999 estimates). the majority of Spanish speakers live in latin america. This was copied word for word from
Fixed Reference, check it out ... it's a cool site too.

so you have to know some espanol for this not-so-new phenomenon, but apparently it is becoming all the rage, especially for medical students ... hiring women from mexico to be a suggorgate mother. apparently, the women from mexico agree to ridiculously low wages to sacrafice their bodies and bring sweet bebés to the world. most are afraid of an epidural and deliver el'natural. all so the soon-to-be-doctors can work 75+ hours per week and perserve their fabulous bodies. i see the point of a suggorgate mother, but for these reasons? hmmmm ...

as a once prego woman, and someone who is struggling to take off the baby weight ... i can see both sides to this. i think a woman should do what is best for her (and her significant other). i personally did not like being a pregnant woman, until the end when everyone, including strangers, wanted to do nice things for me. i had a great pregnancy for the most part. not too much morning sickness, mostly nausea until 12 weeks. no mad cravings forcing eric out of bed to the grocery store at 3 am. no stretch marks. i did not feel more than mild contractions, and i never had to dialate or "push" since i had a c-section.

i did however fall down the steps 4 times because my "center" was off, retained a pond of water, had HUGE swollen ankles, an appetite that would put most men to shame, insomnia, SCIATICA for weeks ... wow, that SUCKED! my boobs, oh they hurt really, really, really bad during and after! after hitting a DD i thought the only thing they could do was EXPLODE! there are other things that i will refrain from mentioning. despite all of that, i am glad for the experience, and am thankful that i was able to concieve and carry a healthy baby to term. especially since he is the cutest thing ever! i would do it again, but no more than 3 times. i am also open to adoption, and maybe even hiring a woman from mexico to perserve my soon-to-be-rock-hard-ab-hot-soccer-mom-body. i would at least pay a fair wage, and make sure it was the right thing for her as well.

some think the practice of hiring a woman from mexico is immoral. i am sure those people have never been pregnant. so i say, way to go chicas ... it may be easy for you during the pregnancy, but just wait until that lovely little bundle is screaming at 3 am and you haven't slept in days! it all balances out in the end. just something to ponder ...

Monday, November 21, 2005

where's zoe?

during pregnancy the illusive "they" say that you forget things ... that is true. 5 months after you have the baby, it does not seem to be much better.

everyday i have a routine ... it has helped me stay organized (which is somewhat of a sickness for me), and make sure that i feed my kid, dogs, shower, etc. little blocks of time when i do almost the same thing everyday at or around the same time. don't get me wrong ... i am not totally neurotic about it. i am flexible and have no problem when "shit happens", but it helps me stay on track for the most part.

this afternoon i fed my dogs, just like i do everyday around 4:45 pm. zoe in the garage, belle outside. they need to be kept separate because a) they are both biatches and b) after living in 4 houses they are still fighting for dominance. pain in the ass, and a blog of its own. anyway, then jack went down for a nap at 5:00 (he usually doesn't go down until 6pm). i enjoy the moment, enter internet land and eric comes home at 5:15 ... this is not like my husband, especially this time of year when he gets home much, much later. again, i enjoy the moment. things appear to be normal. we eat dinner, jack wakes, i let the dogs in ... belle, no zoe. this is weird. it is dark ... cold ... belle is happy and wants to play. where is zoe?

did someone steal her? my heart sank. then my mind started wondering ... it is so dark, she is black, what if she has been bitten by a rabid animal (because there are so many rabid animals in suburbia) and laying helpless in the yard and i could not see her? what if she dug herself out? had the bassett's next door eaten her? she is famous for whoring around the neighborhood, and digging under the fence. i get concerned, and figure i could go look for her, but we have been through this a million times ... you can't see zoe at night from a car. i walk out the front door ... i hear her ... but i cannot see her. i am confused ...

then the realization that i am an idiot sets in, and i saw the "you are such a dork" expression on eric's face. zoe was in the garage. i never let her out after feeding her 3 hours earlier. at least i got a great laugh at my own expense. zoe was pissed, and especially at belle who had gotten about 5 minutes more attention, but quickly got over it. i did too. this is why i stick to my routine.

Friday, November 18, 2005


yellow. green. mushy. slick. BOOGERS! as adults we love to pick ‘em., usually in the car when we think NO ONE else can see us … hahaha! how many people have you busted?! now, think of the poor babes who cannot pick their own.

i have to admit that it is so much fun to suck those little (or sometimes big) boogers from jack’s sweet little nose. it all starts as a game, and he likes to try “get” the bulb syringe (with his mouth open like he is going to eat it). hence the word “try” … nasty … of course, being the “germ freak” type person i am i would never let him! he loves to get “unplugged” unless it is all happening at 2 am and he isn’t even awake, but the gasps for air over the monitor make me nervous and i get to work!

jack is on cold #2 of the season, and it isn’t as gross as #1, but my goodness! we have learned a thing or two since #1 a couple of months ago. thank you to the dear auntie, who has recommended johnson’s vapor lotion and vapor bath … it even makes me feel better. jack’s crib mattress is at a scary 45 degree angle. i may have gone a bit overboard with “elevate his head” advice, but at least it has stopped the mid-night scootchin’ to the corner of the crib to get stuck!

babycenter (BC) plus says that babies get 4-10 colds in their first year, even if they are not in daycare. so, it looks like we are in for a long “season”.

colds are a hot topic for most new mom’s, especially for those who are involved with a play group. i say … if your babe does not have a fever and the boogs aren’t green, go! you could be held hostage in your own home for months, and who wants that?! if you are really pondering the “do i or don’t i” … don’t. stay home, snuggle on the couch and make some chicken soup. open your windows for a moment though … let some fresh air in and let the boogers out. i also take the necessary precautions to avoid picking up critters or passing them to others by:

1. washing my hands before picking up jack after being out of the house, using the restroom, changing a diaper, etc. i make eric wash his hands when he gets home from work before picking up jack.

2. keeping waterless anti-bacterial handwash in every diaper bag and purse, and use it often.

3. using my buggy bagg when using shopping carts and highchairs

4. avoid touching jack’s hands when we are out, and letting him touch anything other than HIS toys (unless we are at someone's home). this is because his hands then go directly into his own mouth.

we can’t always win against boogers, but we can put up a good fight. until #3 arrives, we will continue to suck ‘em, and hope jack feels better soon. too bad he is too young for chicken soup or hot chocolate with marshmallows. who between eric and i will be the first to “catch” jack’s cold? my bet is eric.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

cha ching!

if you are an online shopper, you must click here for something ... AMAZING!

as i have mentioned to my mom's group ... the older i get the more i realize that saving $$$ on something can mean you can buy more things! if you know me ... this is a world i have never known ... just ask my husband or family! it is a challenge for me now to see how much i can save ... especially with the RIDICULOUS prices of baby items.

at can save $$$ on purchases, free shipping, etc. or even share the coupon codes you may receive from your favorite stores! just in time for the holidays!
go. shop. buy your self a lil' somethin', somethin' for being so good. oh, but it can seem somewhat difficult to navigate, but once you find what you are looking for ...cha-ching baby!
happy shopping!

Friday, November 11, 2005

party's over

who would bring their baby to a bar?! ah, eric and i in search of a good time with friends! okay, it wasn't as bad as it sounds ... it was a restaurant / bar, and i would do it again (when jack is older though). we decided to meet some friends for dinner, and attempted to be not so "geriatric" and made plans for 7 pm (note: jack's bedtime is 8 pm SHARP!). we agreed to bring the babies jack 5 months, and their little girl, Sylvie 2 months. i was AMAZED ... there were several babies and even more toddlers at this place. if i was into "picking up" playdates, this may be the place to hang! hahaha.

BJ's (the r/b) had a fun atmosphere, and they weren't afraid to play loud, hot music and keep the tempurature even hotter. it could have been that eric and i were holding our SCREAMING child for an hour, or that i had on too many layers because i misunderstood the weather guy!

jack was a sweetheart in the beginning, hanging out, smiling and then ... PARTY'S OVER! At 8 pm SHARP, our dearest son let everyone know that he needed to go home. the service was so SLOW ... our waitress had a difficult time looking any of us in the eye (when she was actually at the table), and would take her sweet ass time filling our pitcher of beer (we needed all we could get), serving our food, etc. damn kids! i feel myself getting bitter as i reach my 30's.

i wish all restaurants, or anywhere for that matter, that may be serving people with children would put into their orientation a lesson on serving families. for those of you with toddlers ... chime in ... i am sure you have been here, and under worse circumstances. here is what i would teach:

1. communicate if the kitchen is behind, and see if the customers need anything like a babysitter or a couple shots!
2. if the parents order alcohol or beer, make sure their glass is always full ... there is a reason they are drinking!
3. MOVE IT! your tip will be bigger if you can get the family through this with little stress.
4. if there is a toddler at the table, bring their food out first. when we have dinner with friends, family, it amazes me how the servers don't think of doing this and it can make everyone's life so much easier.

sylvie did awesome, especially once she had a good burp. eventually jack was fine, but not until he spit up all over eric and i, was walked around outside and got some fresh air. eric and i ate in shifts ... i love my husband. thankfully our friends were understanding, as was the table behind us that had a 3 year old and a 7 week old. we were also fortunate because of the loud music ... nobody else could hear mr. jack SCREAMING! it was quite the experience, and i would not recommend pushing the limits at such a young age if your kiddo is on a tight schedule. naps are fine ... don't mess with bedtime if you don't have to!

we finally got the check, that was the fastest i saw the waitress move all night and we were outta there. jack screamed in the car ... wow, i did not realize how loud he was these days! then i found some magic in the diaper bag ... the pacifier! yep, jack has not used it in a couple of months, but it was just what the doctor ordered! when we got home the kid was all smiles, and drifted off the dreamland with little trouble.

what a night! i did have a nice time, but it was a learning experience. thank god for babysitters!

party's over.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

favorite baby clicks

baby burps, taggies and blankets by - handmade in iowa
dr. brown's bottles - jack preferred the wide neck version
gerber gas relief drops - babies are never too young for gas drops!
zooper highchair ... it is functional and still looks cool without being cheesey
baby bjorn front carrier
sassy baby ribbon rascals - jack's favorite toy - it is worth it to join, and get into baby center plus
teaching your baby sign? this is the dvd we are going to try ... (
click here)
the buggy bagg - it fits in shopping carts, highchairs, etc.
the GREATEST kids clothes @
BabyStyle - the staples for every cool baby & mom
PokkaDots - adorable items
TuttiBella - great items, even better SALE rack

Monday, November 07, 2005

i am erin

i am the mom of the most charming little boy named jack anthony. i had a c-section and would recommend it to anyone. i will have all of my children by c-section or by adoption. i did not breastfeed because i never wanted to, but respect those who do choose to breastfeed. i am confident with the decisions i have made in my few months of motherhood, but realize i may screw-up at anytime. i am struggling with my weight, yet i feel healthier than ever before. i do not feel guilty about wanting time alone, or just with my husband. i think daycare is a wonderful thing. i admire pregnant women or women with a child (or children) that have a 2nd job outside of the home. someday, i will also have a 2nd job outside of the home ... for me.

i know i am a good mom because i was raised by a good mom. she is now a good grandma.

i am also a good wife, sister, daughter and friend. i was once a good employee. i am flawed in every aspect of my life, and it works because i am happy, and so are my husband and son. i am fun-loving, loyal and consistent. the fact that i grew up in the mid-west is tattooed on my forehead in some sort of invisible ink. i love people. i need a challenge everyday. i am horrible at remembering to put gas in my car or to get an oil change. i am getting better about remembering birthdays, anniversaries and other special dates. i spend $$$ really well. i have dreams, and believe they do come true. i love aveda products, the internet, reading, organizing my closets, cupboards and drawers. sometimes i pee when i laugh. i love food, coors light, cigarettes and good conversation. it would be difficult for me to start my day without the today show. i enjoy dr. phil. what did i do before reality tv? it is time to watch the view. i am erin.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

peas & carrots

peas & carrots ... the beginning of colorful diapers!

my pediatrician told me at jack's 4-month appointment that we could give him rice cereal until 6-months, and then we would chat at that time about moving on to other solid foods. i know that dr. beth knows a lot, but i am the one raising this baby. i think if a mom is comfortable, and uses common sense and reason, she should do what she feel’s is best for her baby. i am in no rush to have my baby grow up, but i want to make sure he is getting what he needs. we also had no other issues, i.e. sleeping through the night, growth, etc.

so, we started jack on rice cereal on his 4-month birthday, and it was fun! he was a natural with the spoon, and most of it was actually swallowed. we then went on to oatmeal after a week, and then went back and forth for a while. As the cereal is a lot for practice, and he was so good at it, we decided that he was ready to move on, and then my sister agreed! done deal, we are on to our veggies!

there is so much information out there on when and what to feed your baby in the beginning. the outline i found i liked best was at a website for
stonybrook university hospital out of new york. i found their link after several google searches. all information like this can be considered controversial, and some of it may even be considered “wrong”. i, however, felt comfortable with this information, and will use it with other sources. isn't the internet a beautiful thing?!

i have also purchased the
On Becoming Baby Wise II. it has some good information, but if you don’t have it, i would not go out and by it. it is basically common sense, and reiterates what is already stated in the first book.

now, it is just when to start finger foods? i have a strong feeling that will be a lot easier!

Helpful links:
Stonybrook University Hospital Guidelines for feeding solid foods


happy healthy eating!

Friday, November 04, 2005

the schedule

as a new parent, one of the most important things you can do is put your baby on a schedule. i was referred to the book On Becoming Baby Wise, by my good friend christine. she has a son, who is 3 months older than jack, and she and her husband have had great success with the Baby Wise technique. there were some parts of the book that i felt were a bit too ridged and strict for our family, so we just modified it to work for us! it is a good reference, and just like anything you take what you need and leave the rest. if i had to recommend one page in the entire book it would be page 119 ... this sets the structure of a daily schedule.

in addition to Baby Wise, i would recommend Secrets of the
Baby Whisperer. i LOVED this book. it follows the eat, play, sleep routine, so it won't confuse first time parents looking to "find the answer", should they use it with Baby Wise. it is mostly common sense, but just makes sense. maybe i liked it because tracy calls the reader luv and doll throughout the book. i felt so much more in tune with what jack was "trying to tell me" after i read it. we were doing well before, but it has improved our communication. sometimes i feel like he gets it when i am telling him that we are going to be home in 10 minutes, and he will get a bottle then ... i swear he is almost angelic in the backseat, patiently sucking his fingers!

we have been so fortunate with jack, as he was sleeping through the night at 9 weeks. i am sure he would have been sleeping through the night at 6 weeks, but i wasn't comfortable putting him on his belly, and that seemed to be part of the magic. i still worry about him, but i figure that is going to be the "norm" for the rest of my life. below is the schedule we followed until jack was 4 1/2 months old:

7:00 am - Wake, eat
7:30-8:30 - Play*
8:30-10:00 - Nap**

10:00 am - Wake, eat
10:30 - 11:30 - Play
11:30 - 1:00 pm - Nap

1:00 pm - Wake, eat
1:30 - 2:30 - Play
2:30 - 4:00 - Nap

4:00 pm - Wake, eat
4:30 -5:30 - Play
5:30 - 7:00 - Nap

7:00 pm - Wake, eat
7:30 - mellow interaction, bath time, storytime
8:00 - Bedtime

*Note on Play: you do not have to "play" with baby every minute. they just need some sort of stimulation like watching you do a project, or look at a brightly colored object. jack really liked the
Tiny Love red, black and white playmat.

**Note on Nap: i make sure to make "noise" during naps. i do NOT hush the dogs, turn down the phone ringer, or turn down the television, etc. it seems to have worked as jack can sleep through almost anything! Unless his cousin cooper is yelling "BABY!" next to the bed. ahh, it was funny for the rest of us!

i will admit that jack has not slept through his entire afternoon naps since he was 3 months old. as babies get older, they do not require as much sleep. as long as he is all smiles, i let him get up and "play".

stay flexible with your schedule as well. i take jack "out" often during nap time. our rule is that we can only miss one nap at home per day. he does really well, but there was the one time at Target that he wanted to let everyone know we needed to go home!

when you have a schedule it is a lot easier to plan YOUR day too. it is important to remember that you can still do everything (within reason) that you used to do, you just have a baby tagging along! more on that in a future post ... traveling with the circus!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

welcome to spit up slendor

welcome, this blog is for those that are interested in the trials and tribulations of a new mom, and how i am managing through the ultimate challenge ... motherhood! okay, i must also give credit to my dearest eric ... my husband is incredible (he seriously looks like a skinny Mr. Incredible from the movie "The Incredibles"!), and is an amazing father to our son.

i will be honest, and share what has and has not worked for eric and i with our new son, jack. we thought we were prepared for the birth of jack in june 2005. i had read so many books, and shared with eric as much as possible, so it was a joint effort once baby arrived, and he knew what i was going through. i even shared the really gross stuff that most women don't tell their husbands. i think with advance notice, the gross factor goes way down, and afterall we made this baby together!

well, it was all of a sudden d-day and let's just say by the time our families had come and gone, and jack was 6 weeks old ... he was crying (again!), and we are looking at each other like "what do we do now?". thanks to the internet, my sister, and all those books we have slowly been able to figure it out! my personal favorite ... Mayo Clinic Complete Book of Pregnancy & Baby's First Year. guess who gave me that one? my sister.

you will see that i reference my sister a lot. i trust her, that's why. she is an incredible woman and mother. she is more experienced in motherhood by only 15-months, but wow, the amount of knowledge you get in that short amount of time is invaluable.

please enjoy. someday i may put this all into a book. i will be the first to admit that i needed (and still do need) a book to tell me what to do every hour on the hour ... this parenthood thing is totally intimidating, and it doesn't seem to get that much easier the older my baby gets!

i am also interested in what is or is not working for others ... however, opinions, especially negative ones, should be used sparingly ... especially if you know that i will not agree!