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Thursday, December 30, 2010

80 Penguins!





We had a great family day at the New England Aquarium along with Megan, Ryan, Johnny, and Kevin (Johnny's grandpa), and what seemed like the rest of the city of Boston under age 5. Highlights were touching a whale vertebrae, all of the penguins of course (Tom named one Bob, and another Obo, based on the colors of their tags, blue-orange-blue, or orange-blue-orange), seeing jellyfish, and Wagamamas for lunch afterward.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

10 Teeth!

Yesterday I discovered that Griffin has 2 new teeth popping through his gums. I bravely stuck my index finger into his unpredictable chomper and found what I think are bits of his first pre-molars, one on each side on top. Whoohoo!

Stop, It's Hammer Time!

This morning while Tom was running around the house getting ready to bring Griffin to daycare for his first "Daddy drop off", Griff and I were playing in the living room with his plastic mirror pound-a-ball toy. Typically, Griffin's version of "playing" with this particular toy means that he snags a few of the plastic bahuuulls and claps them together in his hands. Eventually the balls will roll out of reach under the TV stand or sofa, or our cat Penny gets a bad case of the "crazies" and she chases one into the kitchen. On occasion, Griffin will sit and watch the bahuulls travel down the zig-zag shoot if I'm there to tap them in with the mallet. This crazy morning however, he floored Tom and I with his impressive new hammering skills, as he randomly took the mallet and started whacking each ball down the shoot, as if he'd done it a million times before. In my mind Griff, at the ripe age of 11.5 months seems way too young to be able to do this, but there again is the proof of the amazingly rapid development of babies. Back in month 3, Griffin was just discovering that he had hands.. and now he's able to do this:



The two things that surprised me/made me laugh the most were the accuracy and the insane brute baby strength he used to hammer each ball in. Perhaps our baby was a carpenter in a previous life, or he is genetically destined to be mechanically inclined and share a love for home improvement projects like his good ol' Dad. 


Friday, December 24, 2010

Griffin's First Christmas Eve

"to post"

Okay, here's what we did (added by Dad April 23 2011):
  • Wrapped presents.  And Cats.
  • Made chocolate cookies.  Vicki messed up the first round of dough - but it turned out to be awesome as a diaper joke.  "Holy Crap these are good!" etc.  Pretty much the jokes write themselves.
  • Went to Tommy and Lindsay Gainer's house to have cocktails and food.  It was delicious.
  • Joneses (Andy, Jacqui, and I think both Toby and Harry) were there, as were the Gonzalezes.
  • We tried to take a picture of four babies at once.  Not so much luck, believe it or not. 
  • Then we went to church at the Gainer's usual church.  No lightening strikes to report.
  • Then we went back to the Gainer's for some more good fun, including daddy exercises

Griff went to bed after his usual bed time (8:15 or so, instead of 7:15), but hey, it is (was) Christmas!



Embarassing Parents

"to post"

One of the funny things about being a parent is when you.... what's the word?... Forget!  Yes that's it.  Vicki left this one empty for a few days or weeks or months, and now we can't remember what we did to embarrass you, Griff.   Oh well.  -Dad (added April 23, 2011) 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Griffin at 11 Months Old!

Griff turned 11 months old this past weekend. Here are some recent pictures:


Bottle time.


Here's Griffin playing in the kitchen with his duck magnet, or as he would call it, the "duuht".


He is a great snuggler, and he gives the best hugs, especially to Dad.


In the past few days he started using the walker push cart. When he ever so slowly walks around, he reminds me of a little old man.


Stairs... Oh my.

Griffin Eats Seaweed



Griffin chomped down some seaweed rice crackers this morning. How very Asian of him. :)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

One Hot Potato

3 not-so-great-firsts happened today (2 for Griffin, 1 for me): Griffin had his first fever courtesy of his germy yet adorable toddler friends from daycare; man, they are just breakin' in the new kid one sickness at a time. Around 11am, I got the infamous call from daycare and had to pick Griffin up early. His temp peaked at about 102.6, and he was a literally hot mess- really lethargic, and super not himself the whole afternoon. He spent a solid hour just laying in my lap watching Baby Einstein DVDs. As much as I don't want him watching TV, it seemed to soothe him to just lay still and relax. Today was very difficult to say the least. My "first" was experiencing the feeling of helplessness combined with worry for my child. It was hard to see my son sick and so uncomfortable. I felt vulnerable, a little lonely, and it made me want to cry... (but I didn't.) I sort of sat back and thought, "Wow, this is totally part of being a Mom.. my kid is going to get sick, and I'm going to have to do the best I can to be there for him.." (speaking of which, I can hear the little guy whimpering in his crib upstairs.. aw.) I'll make this last bit quick: Griffin's other unfortunate first was that he got his first boo boo under my supervision. I was futzing with the DVD player when Griffin got a hold of an open CD case. He pulled the paper insert out and accidentally gave himself a big paper cut down his left leg. Ouch. Not my proudest Mom moment. I felt off my game today. I need to get to bed! Hopefully Griffin will be better in the AM.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

I just Peezed

Sneeze + Peed = Peezed
Yep, that just happened. Love being a Mom.

Friday, December 3, 2010

It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas

I seem to have a thing for parades.. live ones, not so much the ones on TV. I just love them, probably twice as much now that I'm a Mom, and conveniently our town seems to love them too. I'm not sure if it's the cheesy local traditions that draw me in, or if it's just the fact that I'm cheap and appreciate the free live entertainment, but I like planning my schedule around Marblehead town parades. This weekend we stayed in town to enjoy the Marblehead's annual Christmas Walk Weekend, which featured the Abbott Hall Tree Lighting, local shops with fun sidewalk sales, Santa & Mrs. Claus' arrival by Lobster boat, and of course, the Christmas Parade along Washington St. and Atlantic Ave. Although Griff is just turning the corner into his 11th month of life and won't even remotely be able to comprehend or remember this, what a better way to spend a weekend together as a family.

Friday night: Abbot Hall Tree Lighting.
Griff was more interested in the random street vendor selling balloons and glowing/light-up "bauhhhllllss" on sword sticks rather than the actual lighting of the tree. I don't think he was even looking remotely in the right direction when the tree actually lit up.


Saturday: The Christmas Parade.
Griffin was dazed and half asleep in the backpack while the vets, scouts, antique fire truck, North Shore swim team, "Woman of the Year", random town political figures, large group of girls all wearing Uggs, Santa & Mrs. Claus, Buzz Lightyear (the highlight), and some other brown fuzzy Disney character paraded by.


Sund
ay: Griffin's 1st Picture with Santa.
Donation to Joseph's food pantry, $20. Nice guy from the north pole dressed in a big red suit sitting patiently in the back room of a local stationary shop with a small half Asian baby on his lap giving him the "Stressed eyebrow/I don't know whether to trust you and your big jolly beard", priceless.


Peek A Boob


Tom comes home late on Thursday nights, so I usually try to make myself look slightly more presentable on the days/nights he's home.. aka, I shower, 60% of the time I even find time to shave my legs, and I make it a point to wear my non-Grandma panties. What a lucky man. Well, this particular Friday morning I was feelin' extra saucy.. I thought, oo, let me dig into my bra drawer and break out one of my Victoria Secret bras that I haven't had the pleasure of wearing since sometime in the early days of pregnancy before the girls became these ridiculous milk factories on a one-year lease. I thought it'd be nice to put on a non-nursing bra that wasn't all misshapen from being washed a zillion times or stained from letting down (how lovely). Needless to say, I learned the funny way that none of my old bras fit (yet), as my boobs spent the day trying to escape, hence this blog entry title. At least my mom friends and I had a laugh when we coined the term.

Speaking of Peek-A-Boo.. Griffin is at the age where he actually thinks the silly game of Peek-A-Boo is funny. I've been unsuccessfully trying to crack a smile from him since he was a wee little guy. Now he basically wets himself laughing and thinks I'm the next Margaret Cho whenever I disappear behind the island in our kitchen and then magically reappear.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Misseur Wee Wee vs. Lovie

vs.

Exhibit A: Misseur Wee Wee


Est 1982, my treasured security blanket, originally a grey towel with blue and brown flowers printed on it, has evolved into a tattered but well loved wad of soft fabric protected by a warn orange fleece sleeve. As a toddler, I was addicted to rubbing the corner tag between my fingers, and once that fell off, it became the edges of the blanket that I had to rub on my fingers or mouth. I brought it everywhere (still sorta do), and thinner and thinner he got (yes, he has a gender). When my Mom passed away, I cut 1/5 of it off and rolled it up and put it with her in her casket. About 8(?) years ago, in an attempt to do some damage control to all the shredding, I tied it into knots. During one of my trips to Hawaii, I put my wooden bead bracelet on him, which created the distinction between his "head" from the rest of his "body". In 2005, Tom sewed a soft orange fleece sleeve to help me keep Wee Wee protected, and there were times around then where I attempted to keep him in a zip lock bag in my pillowcase in an effort to kick my finger rubbing habit (that didn't last long). I've slept with it almost every night of my life, except for the summer after sophomore year in college that I spent in Berkeley, CA (I accidentally left it at my old boyfriend parents' house- it fell under the bed as I packed up my bags and flew to Cali for the summer, and I was way too afraid to have it mailed so I went the entire summer without it.) As a child, when asked if someone hypothetically offered me a million dollars in exchange for WeeWee, the answer was "No way!" As an adult, it's the one possession of mine that I, under no circumstance, would be willing to give to Griffin.



Exhibit B: Lovie


Griffin has adopted his version of a "WeeWee". Est 2010, I call it Griffin's "Lovie"; it is a baby blue stuffed dog head attached to a swirly soft blanket, backed with satin, made by Blankets & Beyond. I found it at Marshalls for $6.99 and had the foresight to purchase 2; 1 goes to daycare and gets trashed/washed, while 1 stays home. Griffin absolutely lights up when he sees it, cries in despair when I try to take it away, and he snuggles with it every night. Since his latest transition to daycare, he has become especially attached to it, as Lovie is loyally performing his duties as a true "security blanket". Since Griff's gotten so addicted, I've bought 2 more off Ebay (at 3x the price-oops), and have also scoured every Marshalls and TJ Maxxs within a 20 mile radius. I felt like I won the lottery this past weekend when I found 3 more at the Marshalls in Niskayuna (two identical ones and third a white bear head version). I think I've purchased 7 in total. Some would call that ridiculous, but I call it sheer genius! :) Griffin will love me one day if he tragically loses his beloved Lovie, and I'll be a hero when I magically whip out a new one (or six) for him.

New Levels of Comprehension.

It is amazing to me that 10.5 month old Griffin can demonstrate that he comprehends certain phrases that I say to him. For instance, during meal times Griffin has been a big fan of using his sippy cup. It's a non-fancy plastic Take and Toss brand cup with Griff-sized little handles. When he drinks water from it, I say to him, "hold it up", and he will tilt his head back and enthusiastically hold up his cup as high as he possibly can.



The other phrase he now gets is "arm in.... other arm in". Every time I put a shirt or jacket on him, I'll say "arm in", as I push his arm through his first sleeve, and then "other arm in", for the next. The neat thing is that Griff will often be holding a toy or his Lovie, and he knows to pass it from one hand to the other, so that he can fit his arm through without dropping his precious goods. Sometimes he will even initiate putting his second arm up before I prompt him to. It's so cool how fast these little guys learn, but it's also a sad reminder of just how fast he's growing up.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Biting Baby

The above picture was taken during our family trip to the Stone Zoo. Oh my, and how true the sign in the picture is: both baby black bears and my baby boy bite (say that 5x fast). It's been months now that Griffin has been leaving his teeth marks on my nipples (did I share too much information?), and as of late, he as been leaving little love marks my poor left shoulder. On occasion he even brakes skin. It freaking hurts like a b#(*@! So my issue is (other than the fact that Griffin now has 8 sharp teeth) that he does it sporadically, so it never becomes a big enough deal that I want to quit breastfeeding and put my boobs away forever, but it happens just enough to be super annoying, especially because I can't fix it!

My instinctual response to the biting has been to consistently say "No, don't bite" in a firm tone and to immediately stop nursing. In recent days my scolding has become a louder, more frustrated yell. I try to be as pissed as I can to prove a point, but man it's tough not to feel bad as soon as I even slightly raise my voice at my precious 'sack of potatoes'. Last week when Griff again tested my patience, I vigorously stormed up the stairs with him in my arms and plopped him in his crib for a few minutes alone in the dark.

Bleh, it makes me feel like such an inadequate parent that I can't get him to stop it. If anything, I think he thinks the biting is somehow amusing, like a game. And I know he's only 10.5 months and barely at an age where he can understand the word "no", but my inability to change Griff's behavior feels pathetic, and it causes me (well 10% of me) to needlessly worry about what kinds of tricks Future Griffin will have up his sleeve... What if he never learns to listen to me and he becomes that annoying kid who can throw a tantrum to get whatever he wants... oh no!
Maybe I should bite back? :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Daycare Breakthrough


It's taken almost 4 weeks, but Griffin is finally adjusted to his daycare routine. Yesterday was the first day that he didn't cling on to me like a monkey and tightly wrap his legs around my waist the moment we crossed the threshold into the infant classroom. His tears and crying were replaced with giddy excitement as he realized he was in a fun place full of toys and other babies. I set him down in the pit, and immediately he grabbed two "bauuhhhhlls", and then crawled over to the baby girl to pat her on the head. I was able to put his sheets and lunch away, and I made it to my farewell "bye bye" before he got upset. Miss Rachel immediately swooped up Griffin (and his Lovie) into her arms and distracted him, which allowed me to escape. I walked (felt more like I was proudly strutting) out of his school with a huge smile on my face, as it was the first day I dropped Griffin off without that sad/guilty-I'm-abandoning-my-child feeling. Good stuff.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving!

"to post"

Another back-fill entry.  Tom Posted this on Jan 23.  We love you Griff!

We spent Griffin's first thanksgiving at Vicki's dad's house with Alex, Annie, and Victor.  We used a bernz-O-matic to torch the creme brulee.    Annie did most of the cooking, and it was funny to watch her and Alex.  Friday we took a walk with friends and went to Vicki's 10 year high school reunion.    




Friday, November 19, 2010

Mile 26: A Taste of Formula

Being a Mom is completely worth it despite the daily frustrations and sleepless nights. Most days are full of giggles and fun, but holy crap, last night completely sucked and today I reached a point where I felt defeated. Here's my blog vent for the day: The past few weeks have been tougher than usual in that Griffin's sleep and eating habits have all changed and I can't seem to get back the consistency I once had. I've lost count of the tough moments where I feel stumped and just don't know what to try next.

These days Griff turns his head in disgust when I try to spoon feed him the same pear and peas puree that he enthusiastically scarfed down the day before. He's become 20% picky about what he eats, a change that is hard for me to swallow (pun intended). It seems like every-other-night, he screams bloody murder when I put him to bed, and I can't even remember the last time he (and I) truly slept through the night. I'm tired. Every time something isn't perfect, I go through all of the reasoning and thoughts in my head: maybe he's teething, no, it's growth spurt, he's adjusting from starting daycare, it's because he now realizes he misses me at night, I should sleep train, let him cry it out, no, go to him because he's sick and his breathing is loud, take him into bed to settle him down, but that will establish a bad pattern, give him 15 more minutes, he's growing out of purees, no it's the combination I'm trying, he's getting too addicted to Cheerios, he's not nursing well, and he's biting me, he's hungry at night, and I'm not making enough milk, I should pump more, try other finger foods, go back to purees, maybe it's the temperature of the food... who knows!

So all of these frustrations led to today: A few hours ago, I buckled and gave Griffin his first few ounces of formula, ever. I've made it 10 and a half months of full time breastfeeding, and I feel disappointed for letting him taste something other than my own milk so late in the game. Granted, he didn't like it and only drank about an once, but it still felt like I'd run all the way to mile 26 of a marathon, and then had to walk instead of sprint the last .2 miles to the finish line. I know a ton of people who give their babies formula- it's no big deal, and I recognize that it's a huge accomplishment to have even nursed Griff so long. I think it comes down to the fact that I wasn't able to be the one to decide if or when Griffin had formula, like I was being forced to by circumstances, and I now realize that I may have to stop breastfeeding (or slow down) sooner than I wanted. I suck at admitting when I need help, or can't do something by myself, and this is totally one of those times.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Motorboating at the Y

Yes, it's no joke. My darling little baby Griffin did his first motorboat this morning during swim class at the Y. No, "motorboat" is not a technical term for some baby swim exercise. Griff literally put his face in the water/on my chest and motorboated me. I was trying to get him to blow bubbles, so I guess technically he did it. Hilarious.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

2 Firsts: Griff's "OH NO" Face & Blowing Kisses





Ok, so we have no idea where Griff learned this, but when I exclaim "Oh no!", Griffin will put his hands on the sides of his head. It's hilarious, probably his best trick yet! As for blowing kisses, he has by no means mastered this one, (up until today, if you'd ask him to blow a kiss while demonstrating the motion, he would typically default to doing the Indian noises with his hand and mouth.) However, today we witnessed Griffin successfully blow his first kiss, and if my memory serves me, he blew it to Dan Baker

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Griffin's Big Break!

I am shaking I'm so excited! Here's why:

On this big and wild Saturday night, Tom and I found ourselves with a sleeping baby upstairs, 2 cats lounging in their beds on the kitchen table, and a half baked episode of Cougar Town playing on our DVR, while we flipped through magazines together on the couch. Tom was enveloped in Motorcyclist while I caught up on my Hollywood gossip in People magazine. All of a sudden, I found myself screaming in disbelief (almost wetting myself) when I turned to page 32...
Griffin's photo shoot from a few weeks ago turned into a full page ad in the November 22, 2010 issue of People Magazine (pg.32). I can't believe it! He's also on the website at http://www.lovemyoreck.com/. Too crazy. Totally surreal. To think that 10 months ago, Griffin was hibernating in my uterus and now he is on a magazine... Wow.

You Know You're A Mom When...

I call the following my short list of "You-Know-You're-A-Mom-When-isms..."

- Occasionally I'll eat the little leftover/dropped pieces of Cheerios from the floor or the crummy crevices of Griff's highchair simply because it's just easier to do that rather than walk to the garbage and throw them out. This new efficient cleaning method totally backfires when the Cheerios are either really stale or mushy and moist with saliva..

- I publicly butt sniff. (my son's butt, not random strangers'..)

- I call my cats "Griffin" by mistake.

- When I kiss my husband, I verbalize and exaggerate the "mwwah" sound.

- It feels like a totally luxury to sleep until 8am.

- I'm comfortable whipping out my boobs pretty much anywhere.. except for around relatives.

- My pockets are full of half crusty/used snotty tissues.

- When I clap, I do it with my fingers spread out and I automatically say "yaaaaay".

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Griffin Turns 10 Months Old!

Griffin at 10 months old:


- Height 28.5"/55%, weight: 23lbs/83%, weight for height 96%, head circumference 46.5cm/80% (taken at 9.3 months old!)
- Developmental Milestones: has been pulling himself up to his knees for a few weeks now, and in the last few days has pulled himself up to standing position
- Favorite word is "ball" or "ballllllllluhhhhluhhhh" as Griff pronounces it; can also say "mama", "dada", "dog", and "tat" (cat)
- Loves clapping, in fact, if he's standing and people around him say "Yaaaay", he will make it a point to sit back down and clap.
- Favorite Song: "If You're Happy and You Know It" (he will literally start clapping when he hears me sing the first 2 words "If You're.."). It's a great distraction for him while on the changing table.
- Gives the sweetest hugs and kisses.
- Can dance with some rhythm. Watching him dance is so entertaining. He bounces his shoulders to the song in the Apple iPad commercial and to other random music on his activity table.
- Just started pointing with his finger. Will touch his fingertip to mine (like in E.T.) and then laughs.
- Currently eating finger foods; likes his sippy cup, but has not yet fully mastered using it.
- Loves bath time, especially with Dad. Griff gets so excited when he hears the water filling the tub, he will stand up and try to lean into the tub.
- Takes 2 naps a day, around 10 and 2:30, had been waking up once a night recently whining a bit, so we are on night 3 of sleep training.
- Has 8 teeth! The 8th one just hit the surface of his gums.
- Has a busy weekly schedule, M: daycare, T: AM swimming, PM playdate, W: daycare, R: AM playdate, music class, F: errands with Mom
- Loves his Lovies- particularly the lightblue dog head blankets- thank goodness I bought 2 of them.
- Already lost his "K" card.
- Has seen the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and taken 4 round-trip flights, slept overnight in 8 states: MA, ME, NY, NV, MD, OH, CT, CA
- Has outgrown the "bucket" car seat and was upgraded to his MyRide65.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A First: Griffin Stands Up!



This activity table was Griffin's motivation to learn how to pull himself up to a standing position. Yesterday on 11/9/10 (age 9.9 months), over at the Rosenbaum's, I turned and saw Griffin standing. He sat back down, we all cheered & clapped (including Griff) and then a few moments later, I witnessed him pull himself back up to his feet. It was the first official time I saw him do it. Whoohoo!

JiJi & Griffin Sitting in a Tree...


"JiJi gave Griffin a kiss; I love you Griffin." - the words of JiJi Hale.

Yesterday during Griffin's usual Tuesday afternoon playdate with toddler friends JiJi and Lachlan, Griffin officially lost his "K" card. That's right, our little man likes older girls, as he and 2 year old JiJi, who apparently caught a case of yellow fever, shared an adorable little baby smooch. They both leaned in and kissed on the lips. It was the cutest thing I'd ever seen. JiJi robbed the cradle, literally.