Archive for November, 2010
You are growing up way too fast Lovie. You are making “Mamamamama” noises and “Ooooohhh” and you seem to say “WHOA”. Its so cute. You have also started flirting with other people when we are out and about. You will “yell” to get their attention and then smile and coo at them. Such a social little guy!
This week you slept for a long stretch of 8 hours without waking up! It was amazing!
You also have very little patience for nursing right now. You want to eat and want to nurse, but you hate being laid down.
You watch baby Einstein every day while I am showering and we are going to be introducing sign language this coming week. You seem facinated by the animal puppets.
You are getting huge. I put three of your outfits into the “outgrown” box today and have moved you into 3-6 month clothing. I cant wait to see how much you weigh.
We have started letting you sit upright in the stroller during our walks, instead of reclining you. You love this! You love to see the sights as we walk with you. And you “talk” the entire walk. Its one of my favorite moments with you.>
Napping is still a struggle, and you really prefer to be sleeping on someone to nap. This is great when I am tired too, but is quite an adventure when I am trying to get things done.
As always my love, we adore you! I love seeing your sweet smiles in the morning and your sleepy eyes in the evening.
Um….it was gross. Kinda nasty, actually. We were at Mr. Donuts and I couldnt resist getting this donut. Especially since the lady infront of me bought a dozen of them. I guessed it must be pretty delicious. I was wrong.
It seemed to be a regular cake style donut with a glaze of soy sauce and seaweek flakes.
My husband was nice enough to let me try it first….
I was less than impressed.
Hubby tried it next….
He said that it wasnt bad..and yet the one bite was all he took!!
So that was our donut adventure! I will post more food adventures soon, including a place called “Pepper Lunch” that was delicious!
What is the strangest combination of foods you have found in a store?
The pinks and purples in the sky leave me breathless. And staring into the heavens makes me feel like this is home.
Black Friday was a little different this year than the last couple of years. There was no early morning shopping or sales ads to browse. Being overseas makes those things non-existent. The military base offered a “Black Friday” event at the NEX, but there was nothing that we needed enough to fight the crowds. And the deals werent that fantastic to begin with.
So instead Black Friday consisted of my favorite things, snuggling with my boy, cup of coffee, Bundt cake for breakfast, and left over sandwich!
I used some of the leftover ham, and my leftover salad to make a fabulous sandwich!
What are your favorite leftovers?
Nolan’s first Thanksgiving was a nice and quiet day. We hosted Thanksgiving for some of the single sailors on my husbands ship. No loved having other people over to flirt and socialize with.
The day started out probably much like it does in any other household on Thanksgiving. We got up early (No was nice enough to not sleep, so waking early was no problem!) and started cooking and cleaning. Nolan hung out in his bouncy chair on the kitchen counter and observed our cooking chaos!
Daddy and No played on the floor for a little while, and I finished up with the side dishes. We ate a late breakfast and then lounged around while the Ham cooked and made the house smell delicious!
After all the side dishes were finished and the house was clean we all headed to bed for a pre-dinner nap. No and Daddy sleeping on the couch, and I was snuggled in our bed. Best two hours of sleep EVER!
The menu was simple and delicious. As an appetizer I made my Killer Krab Dip, and I made a Ham with cloves and pineapple, a fresh salad, mashed potatoes, Soul sweet Taters, and some rolls.
I love Thanksgiving because of the food and entertainment value, but more because it is a perfect reason to put up the tree and start wrapping presents!
Nolan was a dream the entire night and since he has been showing more interest in toys we tried a new one. He seemed to enjoy it for all of 10 seconds.
The holiday season has begun! And I am so excited to keep tryin some new recipes. Check out the links to Pioneer Woman’s blog. The food I cooked was from her recent recipes! Seriously, try the hard sauce…it was awesome!
What are some of your holiday favorite foods?
One nice part about writing everything you are thankful for, for the entire month is that you can go back to the month and relive everything and it helps you to remember. I am thankful for my life. It is perfectly crazy, perfectly disorganized, perfectly chaotic, and perfectly wonderful. It is all just perfect for me.
Im thankful to be surrounded by some of the best friends I have ever had. I dont know what I would do without them, they make my life complete.
Im thankful for my husband being such an amazing, kind, generous, and loving man. Im thankful that he screws up, because if he didnt I would swear that I am living in a dream. Even when things are tense I can look in his eyes and fall in love with him all over.
Im thankful for my son, and the smiles that he gives. His short life (so far!) has brought me so much happiness, laughter and love that my heart could burst from feeling so full.
And Im thankful for all the support I have. Everything has happened for a reason, and I am so thankful that I was given the trials to get to the successes that I am loving now.
Life is good and I am thankful for that.
A friend of mine recently had a very poor experience with United Airlines. So bad that he filed a complaint with the company. After hearing about his experience I wanted to post it here.
Below is the complaint he filed with United Airlines.
Sandra-Senior Flight Attendant
United Airways Flight 322 from SFO to SEA
Incident took place on 22Nov2010 at 1210pm
CONF # WHN1WK
To Whom It May Concern:
My name is Rico M_________, I am currently a US Service member stationed out of San Diego California. On the 22nd of November 2010 I had the luxury of flying from San Diego, CA to Seattle, WA (home) for a Thanksgiving Day visit. During the first portion of my flight SAN to SFO was very calm, cool and relaxed. Serviced by a very enjoyable staff of professionals with UNITED Airlines. Unfortunately I cannot say the same for the second portion of my trip connecting from SFO to SEA.
During the entire portion of the flight I was fast asleep as I had completed 43 Hrs of military duty the fri, sat and sun prior. I awoke at approximately 1205 needing to utilize the restroom. I was seated in16B the middle seat, port side of the plane. I asked the passenger in 16C to please excuse me to use the restroom. As she obliged, the passenger next to me in 16A also accompanied me to the restroom as she had the same need. As we proceeded to the aft end of the plane to utilize the “non 1st class” restrooms both were occupied and including myself there were 3 in line. I noticed that the line was soon growing as a 4th passenger was approaching the rear restrooms. I advised the older female passenger that sat next to me to go ahead in front of me and I would utilize the restroom in the front of the plane. As I arrived up to the front there was 1 female passenger standing outside of the restroom. I began to stand next to her keeping clear of the aisle and the way of others. I Began to make small talk with her when a flight attendant approached me. The flight attendant asked me “what are you doing up here” I replied to her that I was waiting to utilize the restroom. I was then asked as to where I was seated on the airplane at which I told her I was seated at seat 16B, I was quickly told in a rude and condescending tone that the front restroom was for 1st class customers and I could not use it. I can defiantly say that I was appalled to find that I was not good enough nor authorized to use a restroom on the plane because it was segregated from the “common cabin” and exclusive to the “elite first class” customers.
I then obliged to the flight attendants request of me leaving the area and waiting in line at the back of the plane. As I was making my way to the back of the plane I turned to the flight attendant and asked for her name, she replied “Sandra”. I said thank you and proceeded to walk down the aisle. Sandra then called me “hey, and what is your name” and I replied that I did not have to tell her, which she argued saying yes I did. For the sake of causing the scene I tried to leave the area and walk to the back of the plane where Sandra followed me and very vocally repeatedly demanded my name in front of other passengers. She then stated, “that’s fine I’ll just get your information from the passenger manifest!”
As I arrived at the aft end of the plane Sandra had followed me and stated to the other flight attendants to find my seat to get my information off of the passenger manifest. I turned and replied that I sat in seat 16B and my name is Rico M_______. She then began to try and argue with me in regards to the incident that took place at the front of the plane. I attempted to explain my logic in using the “first class restroom” in that there was a line building at the rear of the plane and for the sake of others and not loitering in the cabin area I chose to use the empty one up front. Sandra then told me it was policy that main cabin passengers are not authorized to use the first class restroom and had heard her over the PA system explain that then I would have known. I replied to her stating that I was asleep and didn’t hear that, at which she told me that wasn’t her fault. I then told Sandra that I was not going to continue to argue with her on the plane and told her, her conduct was unprofessional and causing a disturbance. She then exited the area and proceeded down the aisle.
I utilized the restroom and spoke with the 2 other female flight attendants (very polite and professional from the beginning) in regards to the situation. They advised me on my rights when I asked them about a formal complaint. Without indirectly telling me in respects to their colleague I did get the impression that this was not the first type of incident with Sandra where her professionalism and conduct was called into question. As I excited the plane Sandra was the flight attendant standing at the front of the plane near the jet way. As she greeted everyone departing, she simply glared at me and as I was almost past her, held her hand up over my head pointing down to me. As if she was pointing me out to someone.
So as I have sat here and explained my side of the story, I am completely aware there is 2 sides to every story, then in between lies the truth. My concerns with this situation are a couple of things. 1) I complied with Sandra’s instructions as to me not being able to use the first class bathroom, so why did she feel the need to elevate the situation by following me, etc. 2) I have the right to know her name, especially in the event that I would like to file a complaint, but her stating to me, others and her colleagues that she would get my information from the passenger manifest frankly scares me. To publicly state that you will get passenger personal information off an official document, which could possibly fall under the privacy act, is a concern. For what reason did she need my name?? 3) Sandra was persistent in attempting to elevate the situation. From following me through the aisles, verbally and loudly requesting my name, to even continuing in trying to ague with me in the back of the plane was unbelievable.
Through out me taking the time to write this formal letter of concern against your employee “Sandra” I also took the time to review your customer commitment posted online. I couldn’t help but find it interesting that not 1 of your 12 customer commitment points was “to provide respect, fairness and excellent customer service to our guest” or anything similar. I would like to think that would be number 1 on your list. I was also able to review your “ Message to the customer” and in that is the opening statement “In the air and on the ground, online and on the telephone, our customers have the right to expect — to demand — respect, courtesy, fairness and honesty from the airline they have selected for travel.” I agree with that partially in that we as customers and guest have the right to expect those things but should never demand it.
In closing I would like to bring attention to another sentence in your message to the customer, “we strive to keep our customers feeling relaxed, respected and rewarded both during and outside of normal flight operations.” Unfortunately I feel as if Sandra let the United team down in fulfilling this statement. I felt very un relaxed, disrespected on this flight today. I tried numerous times to refrain from confrontation and causing a disturbance. Her persistence and lack of professionalism not only affected me, but the many other guests on your plane that had to be privy to her irrational conduct. It is truly unfortunate that on that flight today that the highlight of will not be the excellent care, or how the pilots excellently and flawlessly landed the plane safely on a snow covered runway, but the Flight attendant who chased the passenger down the aisle demanding his name, or ensuing in an argument. I hope that this is not a common occurrence with United and the team members that strive to make this airline company one of the leading in the industry. I look forward to hearing from you soon with a resolution to my concern.
Master at Arms 2nd Class, US NAVY
Good Luck Rico, I feel that they owe you an apology. A good one. No one deserves to be harrassed on a flight, especially by the flight crew.
Today I am most thankful for our brief NICU stay. Although it felt like an eternity while it was going on, I know how lucky I am that we were there for such a short stay. Im thankful that out of all the possible complications we could have had by having a premie, we encountered very few problems. We are so lucky, so blessed. And I am thankful for every minute.
Today I am thankful for the sound of baby giggles. That sweet sound is enough to wipe any sad thoughts out of my brain and make me smile. I wish I could bottle the sound and send it to those in need!
This week you did MUCH better at sleeping. You require a pretty strict routine, bath, massage, warm swaddle, and a bottle of EBM to top you off. We also started you on rice cereal in your milk this week. The doctor suggested that it might help you with the reflux you were having. So we do that once a day at bedtime and you seem to be sleeping a ton better. Last night you slept for 7 straight hours!
We put up the Christmas tree here, and you are madly in love with the lights.
This week you also became so ticklish that it is difficult to change your diaper. You giggle if I touch you anywhere on your belly. Its so cute and makes everyone around you smile!
You are such a smiley and happy baby. Every single day you seem to get bigger and change. Some days when I get you out of your crib in the morning, I swear you seem so grown up. You have come so far since the NICU days. I just cant believe that you arent my little 5lb baby anymore.
You still dont enjoy tummy time, and will roll straight to your back as soon as we set you down. But you love laying on your floor mat and staring up at your toys. You also have mastered turning on the toy on your bouncy chair. Its adorable!
You continue to light up our lives every single day. We love you so much. And there is nothing sweeter then watching you smile so huge whenever your Daddy walks into the room.
We love you forever,
Today I am thankful for my fantastic dogs! They never stop making me laugh, smile or remember how loved I am.
Today I am thankful for a warm house and full belly. And even more I am thankful for a couch that I can snuggle with my Husband and son on!
Lets just say I am a little bit homesick. Not by much, truly I love living here, but there are certain things that I miss. Not just people, but certain…uh…things.
Here are just a few things I miss about being home:
- The smell after the rain
- The fact that its snowing and feels like Christmas there
- Black Friday shopping
- Mexican restaurants
- Family of course!
And the strangest thing that I miss….
- When we were home, the baby was little and snuggly and sweet. Changing his diaper was simple. Now I have this wiggle butt who rolls from side to side while I try to change him. AND… his poo stinks now!! Its killing me to change his diapers!! Why?? Its so stinky!!
What things remind you of home?
I think that calling it “Child Driven Parenting” works better for our family because it enables us to take a little from all the different methods to create an atmosphere that is the healthiest for our son. Some people “poo-poo” me because Im not co-sleeping full force or because he is now in a different room than us, but it works for him for now.
We do follow the attachment parenting principles, as evidenced below.
The principles of attachment parenting are the following:
- Feed with love and respect: We do this completley. Nolan is not on any type of feeding schedule except that we follow HIS cues for when he is hungry. Clearly a “Child driven parenting” moment also.
- Respond with sensitivity: The attachement parenting method says that “babies cannot be expected to self soothe”, this may be a generalization but my kid will put his hand in his mouth and suck himself to sleep. If I intervene then it causes him distress and overstimulates him. So, we do what works for HIM. This means that there is no black or white in this area. What worked last night, may not work tonight. I follow his cues to help him.
- Use nurturing touch: He is kissed and hugged on. Both my husband and I baby wear when it is both safe and appropriate for the situation (i.e. he MUST go in a car seat safely, the AP method would lead you to believe that you should stop and pull over the car every time the baby is crying. I have a smart kid, he would cry just because he is bored.) He is breastfed, he is massaged and soothed until he is calm. We follow his cues on this also. Sometimes the touching causes him to be overstimulated and quiet time can quickly turn into play time.
- Ensure safe sleep, physically and emotionally: This is where the AP method and my CDP method go awry. Co-sleeping is amazing, I wouldnt have survived the first two months without this method. But then, Nolan changed. He became more restless in his sleep, he wanted to play instead of sleep. And I stopped getting any rest. It wasnt working for US anymore. So we switched him to the crib in our room. This worked well for a couple of weeks, but then our noises started waking him. If I got up to use the bathroom, pump, or if I made a noise in my sleep, he woke up. The hubby’s alarm clock would wake him up. It wasnt working, so we moved his crib into his room. And it works. He is sleeping better and is a happier baby.
- Provide consistent loving care: This AP method defines my CDP method. We are the parents and WE need to be the ones to dictate what we do based on what OUR son needs. He is loved and cared for, but ultimately we are in charge.
- Strive for balance in personal and family life: We are achieving this by giving him some outside influences at daycare. I would almost call this a “paid playdate” instead of daycare, as I am using it for a scant amount of hours a week just to give us both a break from each other. Its helping me to be a better Mother to HIM. Isnt that the point of all of this?
What do you think of the AP method? How have you adapted it to fit your life?
I considered myself a pretty firm “Attachment parent” when I started out with my pregnancy. And I interpreted that to mean that I would co-sleep with my child until he chose not to sleep with me anymore. I had a crib in the room, just in case it was more comfortable for him. I would be the primary caretaker and my husband and I would never be away from him. I “baby wear”, I breastfeed, I snuggle my boy all the time. This is what I thought attachment parenting was.
So when I found myself overwhelmed and dying for a good nights sleep, or even a break. I thought that meant that I had failed at attachment parenting. I couldnt sleep with the boy anymore. He was refusing to sleep while in bed with me, he would mainly play with my face or just stare at me and it would stimulate him. I tried everything I could think of, including just waiting until he was tired. We hit 26 hours of him not sleeping more than 30mins at a time and I thought I was going to lose it.
I put my foot down, I am the parent and it is TIME FOR BED. We did a gentle routine, bath, massage, warm blanket and a swaddle. I read him a book while he nursed and then rocked him and sang a song. His eyes got heavy, and I put him in his crib…..and I walked out of the room.
All hell broke loose. He screamed, he cried, he was MAD. I read that you should leave them one minute for every week of life (barring any danger or a change in cry). So at the 12 minute mark, I went in and soothed him, but did NOT pick him up. After our really rough first night I didnt think we would manage it again.
The next day I did the same thing at nap time. And he was asleep within 5 minutes. That same night I did our routine again and only 3 minutes of crying and he was out. Since then, we have had a week of great sleep. I go in and get him and nurse him when he wakes up, change him and then he goes right back to sleep and I lay him in his crib. Its worked wonders.
Now I recently read in another blog about how they dont believe in CIO. I dont blame anyone for disagreeing with CIO’ing. Personally I am against it too. However, I am more interested in “Child driven parenting” then by generalizing what I will and wont do with my child. Clearly I had a child who did not benefit from co-sleeping. We still co-snuggle and co-snooze for an hour or so in the mornings and even for some nap times. I watch for his queues to see what he needs, because afterall this is about HIM.
I will be posting more about my “Child Driven Parenting” tomorrow, and why I think this is better for our family. But for now I want to hear your stories about your parenting style. What works for you?
Today I am thankful for living on a base that has beautiful gym facilities. We have a wonderful cardio room, raquetball rooms, a huge pool, and a weight room. My favorite room is the “Mother’s room” where there is space for me to set the baby while I use the equipment.
I cant believe that I didnt post about the first time No went to daycare. It feels like an eternity ago already. On Thursday he went to the local hourly drop off for a two hour session. There are alot of things about the facility that I love, but here are some of the highlights.
- Shoes are removed upon entry to the room. Their theory is that babies crawl here, so no shoes should be on the ground. LOVE IT! This is how our house is run also so I love that they have similar guildlines.
- Hands must be washed upon entry to the room, this includes the babies hands. Its awesome. I know its silly but with the amount of people (strangers) who feel the need to touch No’s hands, I wash them frequently as it is. (I know, Im a germaphobe).
- They change diapers hourly regardless of if they are soiled. I love this, some of you may remember my post about the nurse in NICU who did not change the baby’s diaper for the 4 hours I was there. I want to make sure he doesnt get a rash and since I am forced to use ‘sposies while at daycare its nice to know that they wont be sitting wet on his heiny.
- They have a 3:1 ratio of babies to teachers. This is fantastic! Some of the daycare facilities that I saw in the U.S were 4:1 and 5:1.
- They offer a monthly “Parents night out” from 5pm-midnight. THis means DATE NIGHT!! I dont have to rely on teenagers or neighbors if I want a night out with my Sailor. We can book ahead and ahve him watched at his daycare.
When I dropped him off and got him checked in, I had the hardest time handing him over to the staff. I felt like my heart was breaking, and even more when he looked at me and gave me his giant goober smile. I almost grabbed him and ran away! Instead I quickly kissed him and left. I spent the 1.5hrs at the gym running my ass off.
The best part was when I came to pick him up. He was on the floor with the staff and was smiling and giggling, and kept belly laughing at the other babies when they would crawl by. For the rest of the afternoon he was a happy, cheery, and perky baby. He slept for 7 hours straight that night. It was awesome.
Ultimately I think that the break was incredibly needed for me. My mood was so much better and I had a ton of energy and felt renewed. I am so glad that he seemed to enjoy the interaction with the other adults and children and was happy to see me.
This type of daycare is great for our lifestyle because I am able to get things done that I cant complete when it is just the two of us, that way when he is home I can focus on spending the time with him! I dont know how regularly I will use this resource, but it is awesome to know that I have it available.
What type of daycare do you use? What is your favorite reason for using that facility?
Today I am thankful for a husband who takes the baby out of the house so that I can get some rest. Im so thankful that he is the type of man who is capable of handling an infant for a few hours at a time solo. The break was amazing and I feel ready to make a great dinner!
Today I am thankful for my education. Im thankful that I was able to attend Nursing School and even more thankful that they are willing enough to have understood my need to take a break while on bedrest. I am excited to go back in the Spring and I cant wait to finish.
Today I am thankful for the blessing of having an amazing stepson. We miss him terribly and hope that one day things work out and we are able to have him be a more active part of our lives. But for now, I am thankful that I have met him, seen his sweet face and can tell his little brother about him.
It seems like you are playing games with me. Or more likely is that you know how to work me. Smart little dude that you are! You are a happy, smiling and giggly baby….if I am holding you. And only if I am holding you. People told me that the 4th Trimester (The first three months of a babies life) would be hard, but after that things should start to get better. They LIED. You seem to have taken a turn for the grumpy! And you still DO NOT sleep.
This week you giggled for the very first time at something I did. I was blowing raspberries on your cheeks and you looked and me and LAUGHED. It was so cute. We repeated that me blowing raspberries and you laughing for about 30 minutes, I was crying I was laughing so hard.
This week you also proved that you are smarter and more stubborn than I am. In an effort to try and get you to sleep, I attempted to let you “cry it out” in your crib. This was a horrible idea and your cried for 3 hours straight. You held out longer then I could and so you wound up in my arms snuggled on the couch.
This week you also had an epic moment and puked in some ladies hair while we were at Subway. I was holding you up and watching the line when you threw up over my shoulder and into the hair of the lady behind us. I had to put my hand over my mouth to stop my laugh, but it didnt stop you from smiling from ear to ear. She was less then impressed.
Another thing for you to know about the 13 week you…you do not poop. Like once every 5 days. It makes cloth diapering super easy but your poor belly! The doctor swears it is normal, but I just think you look bloated! On the topic of your adorable little round belly, your hernia is healed. I never did get a picture of it, but now you have the cutest little belly button.
You also discovered Baby Einstein this week. It put you into a little trance, but I was able to shower while you were strapped in your bouncy chair watching it. And a clean Mama is a refreshed Mama.
As always my little man, I am so thankful for you. You light up my life and make me smile and laugh every day. Thank you for picking me to be your Mama.
Love you forever,
Today I am thankful for online recipe websites and food network TV. Without them there would be very little spice in my daily eating!
Remember how I was just bitching…urm…mentioning how I am overwhelmed? Yeah, so instead of finding ways to destress myself and relax I decided to add more to my plate. I volunteered to make a few (A SHIT LOAD) DOZEN cookies for the USO. They are going to be distributing them to the Sailors who are out to sea during the holidays. Its for an awesome cause.
When the USO was soliciting volunteers here on base, I saw stars in my eyes. Yes, I would finally have time to volunteer. I have nothing going on right now. No school, no work…there is no reason for me not to volunteer.
I seem to have forgotten about the 11lb attention hog and the lack of household goods.
So…anyone have a good cookie recipe?