Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Practically Green Vlog: Breathe

There will be no Practically Green Vlog today.

Instead, I breathe. And you should too.

Monday, March 30, 2009

A boy's first birthday party - Preview







And that is simply a preview of our Saturday. It was an absolute pleasure. 

More pictures to be posted later this week. 


Friday, March 27, 2009

Chopsticks!

Last weekend we met friends for dinner at Japanese Steak House. It was such a nice evening, and I especially enjoyed watching the young ones as they experienced the wonders of a teppanyaki chef.

In addition to the onion volcano, flying shrimp, and mad flames, the little dude loved the rice and his chopsticks.




And as always, Henry was fascinated by our friend's daughters. He LOVES to interact with older children, and he is especially fond of these two darling girls.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Non-Maternal Instincts

Nonmaternal Instinct

Between life, selling a condo, life, planning a boy's first birthday part, life, chasing after a small child, and life, I have failed miserably at writing a creative and fresh tale about my mothering woes. Instead, I am republishing a post from October, 2008.

Do forgive me.

The curse of the toy

So there's this toy.

To protect the not-so-innocent manufacturer, I will refrain from disclosing the make and model of this toy, but know this, said manufacturer is no small fry.

So this toy. My son loves this toy. It's colorful, it lights up, it has a mirror, it has gadgets, it has gizmos, and well, he absolutely loves it. So you would think that I would also love it, right?
 
WRONG. 

This toy's gimmick is that it teaches kids the lyrics to songs - you know the songs I'm talking about - those gotta-love-childhood-with-goofy-lyrics-and-over-the-top-hand-motions songs. This toy has two volume settings: ear-deafening and imax-theater-blow-out-your-ear-drums.

And did I mention that my son loves this toy. I want to like this toy. It's the perfect babysitter toy. I sat my son in front of this toy yesterday and almost saved the world, that's how productive I was. But when I reviewed the proposal that I wrote while my son was near-seizing in front of loud, happy, light-up toy, I realized how distracted I actually was (grammatical horrors and misspellings galore). Oh for the love of my son's hearing and my work-at-home productivity (I pretend that I work from home, but this is mostly a joke). Why must these toys be so loud and obnoxious?

So here is my question to the manufacturer: you make toys for children, I get it, but who do you think purchases these toys? Not my 6-month-old, that's for sure. We parents have enough noise and chaos in our lives, why not make a toy that puts my child to sleep for the afternoon so that I can kick my feet up and watch reruns of Murder She Wrote put the finishing touches on the roast and potatoes & vacuum thoroughly underneath my spotless furniture (because what mom doesn't do that in her free time - Ha!).

But until I turn into a complete non-maternal git, I'll succumb to plopping little man in front of this regrettable purchase while refraining from ever again using Q-tips in the hopes that I build-up a permanent earwax plug.


Dear God (who made my son's precious little ears),

Whaddya think of me teaming up with one of these big-wig toy makers and creating a line of toys that is kid AND parent friendly? Like a toy ball that houses a hidden compartment perfect for containing mom's special juice and a couple of ice cubes - baby shakes the ball (what fun!), and voila, momma's gotta herself a happy surprise (don't worry, God, I'm a one-drink-only-kind-of-gal). I am very much afraid that these toys are going to take my sanity and roll it right down the driveway. Which reminds me, thank you for back-up sensors. Without them, someone might just smash my sanity into smithereens, and you and I both know, I desperately need my sanity. Lord, I want the best for my son, I really do. But I need to find a better alternative to this toy situation before I accidentally drop said toy from our balcony and endanger all its cute little, shiny plastic parts. Please help.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Practically Green Vlog: The White House Garden

In lieu of today's Practically Green Vlog, I would like to highlight a strong example of green living set by one of my favorite people, The First Lady, Michelle Obama.

Led by Mrs. Obama herself, the South Lawn of The White House will soon be home to a 55-variety organic kitchen garden.

This is the first vegetable garden at The White House since Eleanor Roosevelt's victory garden.

Politics aside, the presence of an organic vegetable garden at The White House sends an important message to children, communities, and the nation about healthful, locally grown, organic foods. 

If and when my husband and I finally buy our first home, planting our own kitchen garden is first on my list of Spring activities. 



Monday, March 23, 2009

My greatest joy



I still can't believe that God has blessed me with such a joyous baby boy.

Friday, March 20, 2009

The games babies LOVE

Can you guess what has evoked such a range of emotions from the little guy?




Did you guess it?

Pop goes the monkey!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Non-Maternal Instincts

When in doubt, blame Star Wars.

Nonmaternal Instinct

At our son's 6-month appointment, the pediatrician informed us that our son would soon begin demonstrating a new emotion: frustration.

Surely not my baby? We have the perfect baby. Seriously, perfect. 

In fact, I often down-played my son's perfection so as not to make other moms jealous. But the reality was that my son slept through the night at an early age, he was never colicky, he hardly fussed unless obviously tired or hungry, and he was content in most all situations. So when my his 9-month appointment rolled around and still his 'frustrated' ego had not emerged, I thought, "yep, that's my baby - Perfect!"

Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.

However wrong I was.

Yes, my baby is still perfect. 

Perfectly FRUSTRATED!

Somewhere between months ten and eleven it was as if, out of nowhere, a mini demon emerged. Don't get me wrong, my son is still the joy of my heart (if you follow this blog, you know how delightfully darling he is). But there is a side of him that would make anyone, even the Dalai Lama, turn inside-out. 

Here are just a few of my son's triggers:
  • When his push-toy truck hits a wall or piece of furniture and can no longer push forward anymore, my son absolutely loses it.

  • When he crawls inside the buffet table and then finds himself stuck because that's what curious boys do, he turns blood-red and smoke begins pouring out of his nostrils.

  • When he discovers a favorite toy in his toy box but simply can't seem to reach it, he begins sweating and making screeching noises that only the dog can translate. 


  • When the food just can't reach his mouth fast enough (because my hand attached to the spoon can only move so quick), he tenses his head in such a way that even his ears begin to wiggle. 

Ahh, yes, my precious son. 

Not even a year-old, and already he has discovered the dark side (I blame his father's obsession with Star Wars). 

Dear Lord, 
What is a mother to do? I can help him change the direction of his truck, or rescue him from the buffet table, or make his coveted toy more accessible, or switch to bionic feed-speed during lunch, but at one point do I let the little guy simply work it out for himself? 
And what's worse is when he begins his fit of rage and realizes that I am not going to rescue him, he gives me such a pitiful look of confusion.

Even worse, at times he gives me a look of defeat.

Oh, how it breaks a mother's heart. And the worst part is, people tell me that two will be worse and three is the new two, so I suppose I'm doomed. 
But until I figure out what to do with my roid-ragin' baby (An exorcism? I'll do anything!), I'm banning all Star Wars movies and Pink Floyd albums from this house.
Amen.




And now it's your turn! Share your not-so-sunny tale of parenthood. Why? Because we could all use a little oops-I-forgot-the-baby-at-home camaraderie.

To participate (today and every Thursday):
  1. Somewhere in your post link to my blog. The easiest way to do this is to add the Blessed Treehouse button or the Non-Maternal Instincts button to your post (copy and paste the html, found in the right sidebar). By adding the button to your post, the link to my blog will automatically be included.
  2. Write your Non-Maternal Instincts post!
  3. Use Mister Linky below to enter your name or your blog's name and a link directly to your Non-Maternal Instincts post.
  4. Check out the other Non-Maternal Instincts posts - you know you want to hear all the horror stories. But just remember, pass judgment and you'll turn to find your own kid doing the unimaginable. You've been warned.
Show me some meme love. It doesn't have to be anything long or fancy - just a simple post dishin' out all the vomit-in-the-hair details. It'll be therapeutic. You can thank me later.


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Looking out


And in case you are wondering what has caught the attention of these two boys - Grandpa!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Practically Green Vlog: ReJAVAnate

*Vlog and GIVEAWAY!
*Winner: Jen of Bookworm on a Mission. Congrats!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


This smiling leprechaun suggests that you go green on this blessed holiday!



What you NEED to know about ReJAVAnate:
  • Produces reusable shopping bags using burlap from coffee
  • Partner with The Arc - providing jobs for individuals with disabilities
  • Handmade bags, Domestically made
  • Strong, sturdy, biodegradable bags
  • Making a difference one bag at a time!
Enter to win a bag from ReJAVAnate (There are three ways to enter. You may not enter more than three times):
  • The first way to enter this contest is to visit ReJAVAnate.com and their sister store, BuyGreen.com. Come back here, and leave a comment telling me which of BuyGreen's products is your favorite.
  • The second way to enter this contest is to tweet about it. After sending your tweet, leave a comment letting me know that you used twitter to spread the word.
  • Lastly, you can enter this contest by blogging about ReJAVAnate. Check out their website, and use your blog platform to raise awareness about this awesome company. Make sure to leave a comment linking me to your blog post.
  • Contest ends on Friday, March 20th at noon (EST). 
And thank you, ReJAVAnate


Monday, March 16, 2009

Who needs a jungle gym . . .

. . . when you have Daddy?




They make my heart melt.

Friday, March 13, 2009

He walks!



And according to what people tell me, my life is forever changed.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Golf is dumb. And I'm always right.

Nonmaternal Instinct

Why do men watch golf?

Honestly, why?

On Saturday, my husband, remote in hand, surfed the channels and excitedly landed on golf. G-O-L-F. Which, by the way, is basically fluorescent green grass, fancy houses, and preppy clothes. And that equates to overpriced lawn care, obnoxious square footage, and dorky attire. That's right. I'd much rather watch a sport that results in sweat on the court or blood on the field with fans dressed in baggy jerseys while scarfing down hot dogs. That's my kind of sport!

And golf is so, well, boring. Admit it. It's BORING. Quiet British guy gives the play-by-play which is actually one play - a swing. That's it. No steals or facemasks or shoves or fouls. Nope. Just one swing, an untraceable ball, and a minuscule hole. BORING! 

And absolutely NO yelling. NO screaming. NO cussing. And worst of all, NO clapping. You can delicately pat while watching golf, but don't even think about puttin' on your game face, poundin' your fists together, and knockin' out the guy next to you because you're swinging your arms so wildly. Okay, so in the off chance that Mr. Tighty Whitey (because you know these guys aren't wearing boxers) actually gets the ball in or near the hole, the 'gallery' (whatever that is) does get a bit riled up. But then it's back to hushing, shhshing, and whispering. LAME.

And to prove my point (because I'm always right) this is what happened on Saturday after golf had been on for maybe five minutes:

Yep. Snorin' and all. 

Funny thing is, I didn't mind it one bit. Sure, the honey-do list wasn't getting any shorter, but how can I be upset about something so peaceful? Ahh, God does answer prayers!

So maybe this week's non-maternal post is anything but non-maternal - oh well, I couldn't resist sharing this with you:


Plus, I like proving my point. Just another opportunity for me to say, "Hey, honey, I'm always right. Golf is dumb." 

Oh, and if my son ever asks to play one of those sweat-on-the-court or blood-on-the-field sports, I'll surely say, "no, baby, but you can play golf." Because what mother, in her right mind, would want her baby to get hurt? 




And now it's your turn! Share your not-so-sunny tale of parenthood. Why? Because we could all use a little oops-I-forgot-the-baby-at-home camaraderie.

To participate (today and every Thursday):
  1. Somewhere in your post link to my blog. The easiest way to do this is to add the Blessed Treehouse button or the Non-Maternal Instincts button to your post (copy and paste the html, found in the right sidebar). By adding the button to your post, the link to my blog will automatically be included.
  2. Write your Non-Maternal Instincts post!
  3. Use Mister Linky below to enter your name or your blog's name and a link directly to your Non-Maternal Instincts post.
  4. Check out the other Non-Maternal Instincts posts - you know you want to hear all the horror stories. But just remember, pass judgment and you'll turn to find your own kid doing the unimaginable. You've been warned.
Show me some meme love. It doesn't have to be anything long or fancy - just a simple post dishin' out all the vomit-in-the-hair details. It'll be therapeutic. You can thank me later.