The Count-Down…

So 2008 is soon upon us, though you wouldn’t know it from looking at our household plans… that’s right, we are staying right here at home for the night, and I can’t say that I am all that disappointed. We were going to spend the night in D.C. with some friends, but those plans fell through at the last moment. So Andrew, Milo, and I have spent the day just bumming around. Last night we had our neighbors Sam and Amy over for dinner and music (Andrew on guitar, Sam on accordion, and Amy and I on embarrassing sing-along vocals), so I don’t feel too much like a loser.
Today we also took down our Christmas tree, since it was so dry and brittle that we risked spontaneous combustion if we brushed up against it. I never realized what a mess those things can be until today! It was so much fun to put up I couldn’t imagine how much pain it would inflict on me to take it down. Those needles really hurt! Anyway, this sparked another cleaning frenzy to get rid of the carpet of pine needles on our floor, rug, and front steps… which lead to me to the typical nearly daily routine of doing laundry for our family…

If you had any questions about how to do laundry with a fussy 4-month-old, behold my laundry technique. Yes, that is my baby in the laundry basket. He seemed shocked the first time I plopped him in there and carted him down the basement stairs along with the dirty laundry, but how else can I get chores done while he is awake?
Happy New Year to all- have a nice glass of champagne for me at midnight. I am planning to be blissfully asleep at that point!

Jumping Fool

Here is my mediocre attempt at videotaping Milo in his doorway jumper. Sorry that it is a little tedious, but I was trying to get him really laughing. The camera seems to be a real distraction, though, so I’ll keep trying. Other things that make Milo laugh: Proudie playing “fetch” with her t-shirt, Daddy singing with two dirty socks, and playing a ramped-up version of “peek-a-boo” with Mommy. Anyway, here’s the video.

Milo’s First Christmas

Merry Christmas! Milo survived his first, arriving at Uncle Ryan’s and Aunt Kristin’s house well-rested despite the previous night’s church-bell disruption (the church across the street decided to ring their bells over 150 times at midnight… yes, we counted, it was hard not to when our entire house was vibrating with every chime). We enjoyed a feast of brunch (delicious, Kristin, thank you!), a family-friendly cartoon about the facts of life (don’t ask), present-opening, and playing with cousins. Milo has now gotten used to Ava’s eye-pokes and has learned to close his eyes before actual contact. At least she is predictable, coming at Milo with a pointer finger in slow-motion from across the room, and we can save Milo’s eyesight for the time-being.

Some pictures from the special day:
Our baby-genius, already reading at 4 months:
Getting some love from Cousin Ava:
Kristin, loaded down with kids- watch out, this is a sign of things to come. This woman is amazing! She cooks, she works, she welcomes chaos into her home, she carries 4 children at once! The mystery baby will be joining his/her sisters and cousins in April… is it a boy? Is it a girl? Tell Aunt Lauren… PLEASE!

Thank you everyone for sending Milo so many Christmas presents! He is enjoying them all, and becoming more spoiled by the minute! We are looking forward to a visit from Aunt Krista and cousin Charlie at the end of next month…

Here Comes Christmas!

Well, I’m sorry to say that I messed up on the video of Milo in his doorway jumper… apparently we don’t have the software to rotate the video (I took it sideways and so it shows up sideways- whoops). So that will have to wait. But for now…
Here is one of the many mess-ups of our Christmas card photos. I actually like it, Proudie yawning and Milo looking at her. I was pleased with the results overall. After all, trying to get Milo to sit still, Proudie to sit on Andrew’s lap, and for us to both be looking at the camera without producing “stroke face” while Andrew rushed back from setting the camera timer was no small feat. So we survived our first family Christmas photo. Who knows what next year’s will bring!
Here is a picture of the sweet little man before venturing out to survive the last of the Christmas shopping. Thanks to Jonathan and Amanda for supplying us with the adorable outfit!

And last, but not least, pictures from last night. We traveled down to D.C. to have a congratulatory dinner for one of Andrew’s friends from University of Maryland. As you can see, Milo was quite the well-behaved gentleman, sitting beside his dad and trying his best to contribute to the dinner conversation.

We will miss family and friends in Ohio for Christmas this year. You are all in our thoughts! We miss you!

Happy Holidays

I do have pictures to post, but my camera is acting up and I can’t seem to upload images right now, but as soon as my tech-savvy husband gets home from D.C., I will make him help me. Besides, I am still trying to get a video of Milo laughing, which he does quite often now, but whenever I stick the camera in his face, he becomes mesmerized and stops laughing. Go figure. Maybe I’ll catch him off guard and you’ll get a video for my next post.

Anyway, things are going really well for us. I am really enjoying Milo at this age (he is exactly 15 weeks old today). He is so much more self-sufficient, entertaining himself in his doorway jumper for 1/2 hour here, 20 minutes there, etc. He is also content to play with toys on his own for a while, or to just sit on my lap while I eat, do paperwork, or answer emails. It makes life so much easier. The house is clean, I feel well-rested (despite Milo still not sleeping for more than 5 hours at a time, I take the occasional nap with him during the day), Christmas presents are sent, and I even had time to bake cookies for 9 of our closest neighbors, order holiday cards, and fold laundry! Milo is so much more content now. He loves going for walks, being read to, and listening to music. Plus, he usually takes 2 naps a day, so I can have a few little chunks of time to myself. In the evenings, Andrew and I switch off Milo-duty and take turns going to the gym for an hour each. I find this time so rejuvenating, being able to work out and have some time to myself. It’s funny, after an hour of working out, on my way home, I get so excited to see Milo again! I really don’t get sick of being a mom. It’s great. And I am counting my blessings now, during this brief “easy” period with Milo, because I know the mobility will bring with it all sorts of new challenges. I have a feeling he will be crawling before I am ready! But for now, I will enjoy my happy, giggly, immobile baby.

I did have my first mean-stranger-baby-advice today. I took Milo to the local library, and as we were browsing the “new fiction” aisle (for me, not him), Milo began to fuss, making his “I’m tired” noises. Carrying him in his front-carrier (his preferred method of transport), I started gently bouncing him, which quieted him temporarily. I noticed out of the corner of my eye an elderly lady sitting at a table nearby turn around and look at us. She then did this again. Milo was not making much noise, but I smiled apologetically this time, as she looked pretty annoyed. She then turned around a third time and said, “I’m not upset that he’s making noise, I’m worried that he is choking. You need to put him up on your shoulder and pat his back before he chokes,” in a really nasty tone! I assured her that he was fine, that those were the sounds he makes when he is about to fall asleep. She proceeded to tell me that I really shouldn’t carry him like that, that he could choke (I have no idea how she got this impression, he was just in a front-carrier, but I continued to be polite). I thanked her, and assured her that he was fine, to which she responded sarcastically, “Well I’m sorry I said anything about it,” then kept muttering under her breath! I was so taken aback by her rude tone that I just moved on to a different section, but geez! Maybe she was just cranky, but she was just so mean. Anyway, I’ve heard of this unwanted advice, but had yet to receive any. You know, the kind of advice that is unwarranted as well as unwanted, coming from a complete stranger who thinks she knows your child better than you do. I think I handled it gracefully, and learned a valuable lesson… that I will NEVER do this to a new mom!