Friday, December 30, 2005

A Big Event

Before I get to the story let me start by saying, Barrett sleeps on him stomach. Yes, I know pediatricians recommend sleeping on their backs, but that was the problem, he didn't sleep on his back, he startled himself constantly and was up all night. So after a couple nights, Doug started putting him on his stomach, and he really slept. I would wake up constantly making sure he was still alive because all the books say he'll die on his tummy, but I really wanted him to sleep! After talking to other moms, I only know two people who actually have their baby sleep on their backs. Apparently, no one wants to admit it but almost everyone gives in and flips their kid over. With all that being said, here's the story...

Last night Barrett apparently had a tummy ache. He was very vocal about not wanting to go to bed. He normally goes to bed between 8 and 8:30, so at 9:30, I put him to bed wide awake. After about ten minutes of crying, I went in to check on him. He was really mad! So, I took him out and rocked him to calm him down, and then I put him back in bed.

Ten minutes later, he was really mad. My mom is in town so she went in to check him. When she came back out she asked, "When did he start sleeping on him back?"

After a few seconds of staring at each other, my mom and I realized he flipped himself over. So we did what any loving mom and grandma would do, we ran in and flipped him back over to see if he'd do it again.

We stood over his crib with him screaming and snorting on his tummy. We'd get excited as he'd hunch his butt in the air and almost roll as he would scream. I wanted to video tape him, but then I realized what I would have on tape. Something about taping an irate baby trying desperately to get his mommy to help him as she sits there and records didn't seem right. So, I picked him up and rocked him back to sleep.

I stood there at his crib watching him sleep, and I almost started crying. He's getting too big too fast. It's like I could see him running out the door to play with his friends because they're more fun than his mom. I just wish I could slow time down. I know most moms are excited for all the milestones, but I'm just not.

But... I can't lie. I did let him cry a little longer in bed this morning as I watched to see if he would roll over. He didn't, but he will again soon.

Even though I don't want him to grow up this fast, I'll be proud of him as he passes every milestone.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

We're Still Not Done?

Christmas is almost over for us. It seems like it all happened so fast! Barrett has no idea what happened, but he seems happy with all the new noise makers he has. I think they're all cute right now, but I am sure in a few weeks, I'll be sick of them. He also enjoyed being held and snuggled by so many people. Luckily for him, the spoiling isn't over, our last Christmas will be Friday night with my mom.

The biggest event lately has nothing to do with the holidays. Last night, Barrett had his first experience with cereal. He definitely likes his bottle better. I finally figured out that I could get a spoonful in his mouth and then quickly stick the bottle in. He would end up washing the cereal down without knowing it.

I think he'll be happier when he gets something with some taste, and the pictures will be more colorful too. :) We'll be starting a vegetable next week sometime if he cooperates and eats cereal the rest of this week.

We hope all of you had a very merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Two Down, Four to Go!

Barrett survived yet another Christmas celebration.

We had Christmas with part of Doug's extended family yesterday. We had a wonderful time, and Barrett was pretty much perfect all day. Everyone helped take care of him, but Doug's Aunt Cindy definitely dominated his time. She was determined to put Barrett to sleep even if he had just woken up. Apparently she feels putting baby's to sleep is her gift. Unfortunately for her, Barrett had other plans.

One of the highlights of the day was our cousin Kelli's little girl. She LOVED holding Barrett because she is really in to dolls. She held him a long time, and gave him back when he whined a bunch. As she walked away she shook her head and said, "That baby is wearing me out!" I almost yelled Amen, but I doubt she'd have gotten it. Later one of her presents was a baby doll that cried. No one really knew what you were supposed to do to stop it, so finally she had her daddy take the batteries out. I wish I had known the battery trick when Barrett went through his colic phase.

We are headed to family party number three tonight. Barrett gets to meet Matthew, Doug's cousin, for the first time tonight. He's such a character. I just love a guy who wore pearl snaps when they weren't cool, then when they were cool, and still now when they are uncool again. He's by far one of my favorite people, and I know he'll be one of Barrett's favorites too.

Have a blessed Christmas!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Barrett's First Christmas Gift

We went to Dallas this weekend, and Barrett had his first of many Christmas celebrations. He had no clue what was going on, but he did seem to enjoy the chaos of all the "big boys" playing. Between Doug, my brother-in-law, my three twenty-something cousins, and my two little nephews there was a LOT of playing.

My aunt tends to give all the "kids" a toy every year, and this year the boys got marshmallow guns. There were marshmallows flying everywhere. In fact, I found quite a few in Barrett's diaper bag when I was at Target yesterday. I'm sure my aunt will be finding them for years!

Barrett did get his very first Christmas present. My aunt gave him Twas the Night Before Christmas. I'm really glad his first present was something we could keep, but I do still want the Huggies size 2 and Isomil Advance Formula! I put that on every list I could, but we didn't get any yet.

Barrett also got a camouflage hat. He wore it for a while then, but he will NOT wear it very often.

Later in the evening, the boys and I decided to teach T-man, my nephew who is seven, how to play poker. He's such a mathematical genius that we're hoping he'll support us all one day. AJ wanted to play too, but he really just wanted the chips.

Barrett seemed to like his first Christmas so far. I'll keep updating as the partying continues. Enjoy your holiday!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

He's a Rebel

I realize a lot of kids suck their thumb or fingers, and it is ok. Although, I really want Barrett to be a pacifier kid.

I had a "binkie" until I was five. In pictures, I always had a yarn necklace that matched my outfit holding my binkie. As much as my mom loved for me to look all cute, I'm sure the big brown pacifier hanging around my neck drove her crazy. I loved my pacifier. I have no idea if my parents ever tried to take it away, but it wasn't until I started kindergarten that I decided that I was too big for a pacifier.

Don't worry. I do not have visions of Barrett with a yarn necklace on. I want him to be a pacifier kid because I think it will be easier to wean him off of. I've taught fifth graders that still sucked their thumbs, and they were picked on a lot. I figure "losing" the pacifier or cutting it so it breaks is a lot easier than taking his hand away.

Apparently, Barrett is going to be a lot like me, just not the way I want him to be. Because I want him to like his pacifier, he likes his hand. Of course, he wouldn't be like his mommy if he sucked his thumb like a normal kid, but Doug keeps trying to teach him to suck his thumb. (Doug is much more normal than me.) Here's his way of pacifying himself:

Now, try and hold your hand like that. It can't possibly be comfortable. That's my boy, the rebel!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

What is Wrong with his Head?

Between putting my house back together from Doug's three days with the baby, doing ALL the laundry (how my husband can wear so much is beyond me!), getting my Christmas card address list completed, mailing most of my Christmas cards, buying presents, wrapping presents, wrapping my dad's presents he ordered on-line and had sent to me, going to two family reunions, cooking for both reunions, pretending to have fun at an impromptu Christmas party with my husband's work buddies, and keeping Barrett happy, updating my blog has been put on the back burner.

I did have a brief break from the last item on the list since Barrett had his first sleepover with a non-family member, Cindy. While I was watching a bunch of women smoke at the oh-so-fun Christmas party, Barrett was being perfect for Cindy and her husband, Brien. (Go to the link to hear about her night with him & see a picture!)

Now, on to my title. Barrett went with me to Sunday school today, and since my fourth grade class was somehow all girls, they were thrilled to have a baby there. He actually was a great prop for the lesson, but that's a whole other story. Anyway, as we were watching the video for our lesson, the little girl next to me was whispering to her friend. Moments later they both asked, "What's wrong with his head?" I calmly explained that it was cradle cap, and it is normal. (Their faces told me they didn't think it was normal at all!) I ended up having to explain cradle cap to a class of fourth graders while they all looked at Barrett like he was diseased. I'd be lying if I told you it was ok because "they are just kids".

Our next event of the day was a family reunion. Barrett was dressed so cute, and I was ready for all the adoring relatives to tell me that I did have the cutest baby in the world. They did tell me how cute he was, BUT it seemed every women had to tell me what I can do for the "problem" he has on his head. All the books say that it doesn't bother him, so honestly, it hasn't bothered me until today.

The pediatrician said it's fine and will go away within the first year but probably sooner. I like him, I trust him, and his words were enough...

I came home sad. Why do all these people have to point out the one little imperfection Barrett has? Most people only put other people down to make themselves feel better. I've come to accept that. They can talk about Barrett's head all they want, but couldn't they do it away from me?

So, I actually considered some of the suggested treatments that everyone swore would work:

1. Rub olive oil his head. Let it stand, then scrub it really hard.

2. Use Head & Shoulders. (That specifically says do not use on children under 3.)

3. Pick all the scales off, and they won't come back. (She also said I'd be pulling out all his hair, but "that's ok, it'll grow back"!?)

4. Use a coarse scrubbing pad when I shampoo him.

And my favorite...

5. Cover his head with peanut butter. (Does she not know about the peanut allergy issues?)

We go to the doctor tomorrow for his two month check up, and again, I'll ask what I should do. I assume I'll get the same reply I did before, and I'll do what he says.

Barrett is happy and that is what is most important. Feel free to leave me your home remedies for cradle cap, I probably won't use it, but I am having fun hearing them. :)

Monday, December 05, 2005

I Heart NY

I am back from an amazing weekend in NYC! I'll blog details and post pictures later, but I need to put my house back in order first. The good news is Barrett survived his weekend with Daddy with LOTS of help from Nana and Pa. Since I got in at 2 am, I haven't gotten to talk to Doug about how everything went, but from the looks of the house, I can assume a few things:

1. Barrett did eat. There are a TONS of bottles to be washed. I didn't even know we had that many bottles!

2. Barrett did sleep. His sheets REALLY need to be washed.

3. Barrett was washed. His bathroom has his tub still full of bath water, three towels on the floor (I have no idea how Doug used three towels), two washcloths on top of the toilet, and baby soap running down the side of the tub.

4. Barrett did wear different clothes. Apparently Doug just stripped him when he spit up and dropped the clothes where ever they were when Barrett spit up.

5. Barrett's diapers were changed regularly. There are diapers overflowing out of the Diaper Genie.

6. Barrett kept Daddy busy. Somehow all the household chores didn't get done. :)

My trip was a definite success for two reasons: I got away and had a blast, and Doug got to experience my life for a few days. When I asked if he had fun with Barrett, he said, "Yeah, but it did get kind of old doing the same thing ALL day long. I never had time to do what I wanted to."

Mission accomplished!

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Teething, Toilets, & Robbing Walmart

As you can tell by the title, Barrett and I had a crazy day!

The day started earlier than usual, 4:45 to be exact. I woke up because I could hear Barrett stirring which he does throughout the night, so being the paranoid mom that I am, I was actually relaxed by the noise because I knew he was breathing. I was REALLY glad I didn't need to go check on him because with the cold front coming through last night our house was freezing! I know this because of the other 3 or more trips I made throughout the night. (It cracks me up when people say I'm lucky he sleeps through the night because I've realized I never will again!) Around 5:15, Doug apparently got tired of waiting for him to go back to sleep, and he got him out of bed. I secretly was thrilled that Daddy took care of it, or so I thought.

5:17... Daddy comes into our room with Barrett, puts Barrett in bed with us, comments Barrett is obviously having teething issues, and he goes back to sleep. By he, I mean Doug. Barrett had other plans. I decided I could distract him from his aching gums by feeding him, and since my loving husband was snoring, I figured I'd have to do it. Since a bottle takes a while for Barrett to consume, I decided to go to the bathroom first. Hence the second word in my title, toilets.

I would like to amend my list of things I am thankful for from the other day. I need to add indoor plumbing. As I staggered into the bathroom this morning, I was greeted by the FREEZING tile floor. You know where this is going, right? Because I wasn't thinking clearly, I was then greeted by an even colder toilet seat. What a crappy way to start the day, no pun intended. Because I challenged my Sunday school kids to see the blessings in their lives instead of complaining, I'd like to say I feel blessed to have a toilet inside because an outside seat this morning would have really sucked!

After getting the bottle made, I crawled back in bed with my snorting, angry baby and snoring husband. My attempt to appease Barrett worked, and he happily sucked his bottle down while his daddy got ready for work. After Doug left for work, I was sitting in bed with Barrett trying to convince him to go to sleep, when I noticed that my nativity scene was the only thing I could see in the house because of the one light Doug left on in the living room. It was one of those moments I wish I could film and watch over and over again. I had a very relaxing conversation with God, and I didn't even notice Barrett had passed out. :) My day was getting better!

Wondering where robbing Walmart fits in?

Yes, I robbed Walmart today.

I went to buy three things: Grandpa's Christmas gift, diapers, and formula. I collected all three and went to one of the self check aisles because Barrett was not in the mood for a line. I scanned all three items while listening to Barrett scream. I was trying to dig out my $10 similac coupon while soothing Barrett. I pulled out a wad of coupons, scanned the similac one, dropped it in the "deposit coupons here" spot, crammed the other coupons in my bag, grabbed my stuff, and rolled frantically out of Walmart.

When I got home, I unloaded everything, cleaned the spit up out of Barrett's seat, changed Barrett's diaper, and emptied his diaper bag of dirty bottles. It was then that I noticed my crime... There in the bottom of his bag was the $10 coupon. Oops.

Back to Walmart. Apparently there are a lot of people who scan coupons and don't put them in the little box, at least that's what Velma the "manager on duty" says. (By the way, a red vest means manager if you ever need one.) And, they do press charges, it is considered theft. We went to the box where I deposited something and Velma opened it up. There was a coupon for $1 off Milicon with my name printed on it. I'd make a bad thief. I was thanked for my honesty, but I was happier that I wasn't punished for my stupidity.

Here are some pictures from Thanksgiving that wouldn't upload the other day.

My nephew, AJ, loves money. He found this in Uncle Doug's truck. He was actually more excited about the quarter he found.

All my other nephew, T-man, wants for Christmas is his two front teeth.

Barrett loved seeing so much of his family on Thanksgiving, especially his Uncle Ray!

Barrett is in bed asleep now, so I better sleep while I can. Tomorrow we go to take his Christmas pictures. Wish me luck!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Daddy's Turn

Today Barrett spent the day with Daddy. So, true to form, Barrett slept the entire day when he was with someone else. It makes it hard to get sympathy for how hard my days are when he is perfect for everyone else. Doug never had to deal with a crying fit, spit up, or a poopy diaper, but then again, he only had him for an afternoon. The real test will be next weekend. My friend Cindy has made it possible for me to do something I have ALWAYS wanted to do! We are headed to New York City next weekend. While I have been there before, it's never been in December. I can't wait to Christmas shop there and see all the Christmas decorations! Daddy thinks today was easy! We'll see how easy it is after he has him an entire weekend.

Now, on to what I need from Doug's helpers. DON'T HELP HIM! Make him wash bottles, change diapers, sooth the crying, make bottles, clean up puke, bathe Barrett, etc...

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and since I wasn't able to write, I wanted to take a minute to mention the things I am thankful for:

My family, that is ALWAYS is there for me

My in-laws, who are so much more than the parents & brother I got through marriage

My friends, even though I don't see ya'll as much as I'd like, I do love you

My former students, you made the past 8 years amazing

Barrett, what would I do without him!

Doug, I am so lucky to have a husband that allows me to do whatever my heart desires

and finally,
I am thankful most for the Lord who has blessed me with the people I love.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Who Would Sue Santa?

Barrett experienced another first yesterday. He had his picture taken with Santa! I did not go to the mall with the intention of having the picture taken, but seeing the Santa booth with no line was too good to pass up. While I remember waiting FOREVER in line to see Santa modifying my list the entire time, I couldn't see any reason Barrett needed to wait until after Thanksgiving.

He was somewhat happy, not covered in spit up and/or drool , and he had socks on. So, he was ready to have his photo taken! Those may not seem like abnormal occurrences to you, but trust me, it's amazing they all happened at the same time. He's not always real happy right now due to the teeth that apparently trying to rip their way through his gums which also causes the drool pool on his shirts and mine. He also hadn't spit up yet on the clothes HE was wearing (don't ask about my shirt!). I had the other, cuter clothes covered in rancid soy milk in the diaper bag. The final requirement, socks, involves his Nana. If I had his Christmas picture taken without socks, I would just be setting myself up for her concern about his freezing feet. After all, it was a frigid 80 degrees!

We walked straight up to Santa, and Barrett went to him with no complaints. Getting Barrett to look towards the camera and smile was not so easy. As all four of the elves danced around like idiots, Barrett just looked constipated. I then started to sing Mr. Sandman, and as I expected, he smiled. Unfortunately, it threw Santa off, and he looked at me instead of the camera. To be honest, everyone looked at me, along with the passing shoppers, but who cares I got the picture! So, I had to choose between constipated Barrett with Santa looking at the camera, or cute and chubby Barrett with wandering-eyes Santa. It was not a hard choice.

After the chaos ended, Santa handed me the traditional candy cane. While I picked the package of pictures I wanted, I unwrapped the candy cane. (It's not like Barrett can have it!) I bit into the candy cane and was shocked. It had no crunch to it. If I am paying an arm and a leg for Santa pictures, the least they can do is give me a fresh candy cane! So, I did what any woman who already made a fool of herself would do, I asked for another candy cane because mine was apparently stale. It was then that I heard something that actually made me sad to be an American...

They are now giving out these weird softer candy canes because of a lawsuit. Yes, someone sued Santa for giving crunchy candy canes! I see people so often forgetting what CHRISTmas is all about, and someone suing Santa is a great example.

I promise if Barrett should ever break his tooth on candy that I allow him to eat, I will explain to him that sometimes bad things happen that are no one's fault. I will not teach him it is an opportunity for money.

Merry Early CHRISTmas!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Mr. Sandman, Bring Me a Dream

I came to an amazing revelation yesterday, motherhood changes you. I don't mean physically, although the extra skin on my waist is a definite change. I did something yesterday that I swore I would NEVER do again.

It all began in 6th grade. I was in choir preparing for our Christmas show. It was the last rehearsal before the show, and I was excited as I stood in the front row with all the other short people wearing my sweatshirt proudly displaying our gold Raider mascot. I made sure my Santa hat was on perfect allowing my bangs not to be squished. (It was the 80s!) We finished our first song, and we were amazing. Then, the choir teacher called me up in front of everyone! I wondered, am I directing? Am I being thanked for my dedication? Am I doing a solo????

She then said the words that would scar me for life, "Brigitte, could you just mouth the words?" As everyone giggled, I slumped back to my front row spot. I was singled out as the worst singer. There were thousands of us, and I was the worst? Ok, there were only about a 100, but still... It was then I swore I would NEVER sing in public again.

I have stuck by my self-imposed rule until yesterday.

Barrett loves my singing. His favorite is Mr. Sandman. How I figured that out I have no idea. I don't remember the first time I sang it to him, but it always makes him smile. When he first started smiling, singing Mr. Sandman was the one thing that always prompted a grin. Slowly I have gotten more brave singing it in front of one or two people, but only family and close friends. His smile is so cute that I'd choose embarrassing myself so others can see him smile too.

In Sunday school yesterday, the activity we had planned required the 4th graders to sing "Thy Word". The 3rd graders, who I've already done this activity with, sang it as soon as I mentioned the song. So, when I said, "Who knows 'Thy Word'?" yesterday, I expected to hear the kids start singing. They all just stared blankly. I knew they should know this song, but they all looked at each other first. It was then that I faced my fear. I sang in front of them, and to my amazement, they didn't laugh, they joined in. It was a great moment!

I promise that no matter how horrible Barrett's singing voice is (genetics are not on his side), I will tell him he's the best. And, when the day comes that someone tells him he can't sing, I will be there to sing along with him, like my 4th graders did with me.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Dorothy, The Mother-in-Law

While most people dread their in-laws, I lucked out with amazing ones. Dorothy, Nana to Barrett, is not only Doug's mom, but she's also one of my closest friends. With that being said, making fun of her is done with nothing but love.

Dorothy is anything but computer savvy, but she has managed to find her way to my blog. What she didn't understand how to do is leave her own comment. So, for her sake, as well as the other grandparent people, here are some directions:

1. Look at the bottom of this post for the word comments.

2. Click on it.
3. Scroll down past any comments that might already be there, and you will see a box that says, "Leave your comments".
4. Leave your comments.
5. Scroll down more, and type your name.
6. Click publish your comment.

Since I am picking on Dorothy today, let me show you a photo of her and Barrett when he was in the hospital. Notice his foot where she bundled him.

Ok, in her defense, that is really his hand. We didn't have any little gloves, so we used a sock. But the image that this first time grandma mangled her new grandson is pretty funny!

Coming soon... how his Gigi (the other grandma) thought he crawled out of bed at 8 days old...

Friday, November 18, 2005

Misplaced trust

Cindy was kind enough to help me start this hobby, and because of this, she knows my password. Suddenly, the phrase "I know I'm a hot mama" appeared on my blog. Since I don't know enough to change it, I guess it will remain. BUT, my password will change. Someone, I assume George, wants pics of Barrett. So, here he is:

P.S. I am a firm believer in revenge...

I Need a Hobby!

Yesterday while out shopping with my friend, Cindy, we drove past Hobby Lobby where I so eloquently said, "I went to Hobby Lobby the other day to look for a hobby, but I didn't find one." So, this is apparently going to be my new hobby. My first choice was shopping, which I have been doing every day since Barrett was old enough to go out in public, but my checkbook (and husband) suggested I find something else to do.

If you don't know me, this probably isn't making much sense, so I'll give a little background. I was a middle school teacher for the past eight years until my husband, Doug, and I decided that I would stay at home with our baby, Barrett. After spending a few years and thousands of dollars trying to conceive, it just seemed right to see every moment of our little miracle's life. So, in August as all my teacher friends were preparing for another school year, I was waiting for my overdue baby to arrive.

After about a month of life with a newborn, I was ready to head back to teaching. Luckily, with a lot of counseling from other mommies and a Zoloft prescription, I feel great about my new career. Since I tend to see the humor in everything but I don't have time to call friends and family with every little detail of my chaotic life, I decided to start this blog so you can know what we're up to. I will try to update regularly, and I am sure Cindy will let me know if I am not keeping up with the new hobby she forced me to start.

Barrett is fussing so my "break time" is now over. I did get almost 15 minutes of peace...