Monday, November 29, 2010

Diaper Rash Wars

The Baby has her first major battle with diaper rash. It's a pretty stubborn rash as we have tried to douse it with every type of powder and cream in existence. The Baby doesn't seem to mind it for the most part but every now and then she will throw her fit to let us know. Our doctor suggested mixing diaper cream with Maalox, so we'll try that tonight. Sounds like an old wives trick but the doctor is pretty reputable.

The Baby just turned 8 months and she is hitting all her milestones. The only concern from the doctor was that the Baby wasn't gaining as much as weight as other babies. But on our last checkup visit she saw how active the Baby was, crawling and moving around all over the place. Luckily our doctor is pretty up to date on the World Health Organization's recent studies that show that breast-fed babies will not gain as much weight as other babies but still be developmentally sound. Even Wal-Mart toys are shown to be huge and sumo-ish with the selling of the "newborn baby" doll that was displayed in the aisle.

 Seriously, that's a "newborn baby" sitting next to our 8month old daughter. I think the Wifey would be in a wheelchair if she squeezed that baby out between her legs.

And of course to us, it seems like the Baby is developing way too fast.

The Baby has begun "cruising" around the house. Cruising is when babies start to pull themselves on objects and then walk along that object. The Baby will use the wall, the coffee table, the foot of the bed, pretty much anything she can stand with. Periodically, she will let go with both hands and free stand for a brief second before she either falls or grabs that object. But every time she does it, she is so proud of herself.

Meal time for the Baby includes everything. If it's on the menu, she will eat it. The only thing we won't allow her to eat is shellfish just because the Wifey was allergic to shellfish once. But I am sure the Baby would enjoy it. Currently the Baby loves cheese pizza. We gave her a plain piece of bread and she looked at, realized there wasn't any cheese on it, and threw it back at us. Snack wise, the Baby absolutely loves the Gerber Graduates Lil Crunchies, maple cinnamon flavor. It's really a great tool to quiet the Baby when she gets fussy.

So now we're all preparing for her first Christmas. Hopefully it's a good one.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Obligatory Thanksgiving Post

At this very moment the Wifey is baking up some delicious treats for today's multiple Thanksgiving feasts. We're big fans of Bravo's new reality cooking show Top Chef: Just Desserts and one of the chefs made a red velvet whoopie pie and I said, "you should bake that next!" and she obeyed. So which leads me to today's topic about all the things for which I am grateful.

First and foremost, I am extremely grateful that I don't get chewed out on national television.

But really, I can 100% honestly say that everything good in my life has some direct correlation with the Wifey. Granted, she has her foibles that seem to annoy me on a daily basis but she has good intentions. And sometimes I lose the sight of the fact that she is trying so hard to be the ideal wife. I don't need her to be perfect, I genuinely love the way she are (Timbaland reference for the grammar police). I do want the house to be a little cleaner and I do want her to stop invading my side of the double sink in the bathroom and I wish she would throw away the baby Chewbacas that come out of her hair and fill up the bathtub drain. But I'm nowhere near perfect either. She tries and she tries hard and I can't fault her for that. If I just had an ounce of her compassion and her love and her excitement for the smaller things in life, I would lead a very happy life. She is my constant reminder that I am unconditionally loved and I will always be thankful for that feeling.

So you would think that if the Wifey is so awesome that anything that came out of her would be awesome too right? Well, I've seen what Wingstop night does to her and that's not 100% true. But, the Baby did emerge and it might be cliche to say, she has changed my life.

Before she was born and much less conceived, the Wifey and I battled about how much having a child would change our overall dynamic as a couple. We would take spur of the moment trips (we decided on visiting New York City on about two day's preparation, the same with Florida, twice) and really enjoyed our spontaneous lifestyle. In fact, after visiting NYC, we decided, "hey let's buy a house." And we purchased our first house within three weeks. So needless to say, our lives would ultimately change when this 6lbs 10oz package shot through the mail slot. And the transition from being a cool hip couple to cool hip parents would begin. I can't imagine how our lives would be without the Baby now. She's just a relaxed, fun baby. She can kiss on command and loves smiling.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pictures from the BlackBerry

The Wifey leaves for work a lot earlier than when the Baby and I actually wake up, so she doesn't get to see the Baby dressed and ready for the day. So I send the Wifey a picture of the Baby every morning. Here are some pictures from the BlackBerry. I like to think I dress the Baby quite well, the grandmother will disagree and quickly change her. I will let you be the judge.

Here is the Baby in her Halloween costume watching the hundreds and hundreds of people for the Swiss Avenue Trick or Treat. She just sat there and watched.
The Baby got some of her cookies on her body. The Wifey is really mature.

And this what happens when the Baby gets exhausted. She passes out, whether it's in her Pack N Play or eating. What a life.

Trash Box Percussion

 One of the best and most frustrating things about babies is their love for junk. As I look into the Baby's toy box, I see more empty bottles, boxes, containers, and junk than actual toys. We started a bad habit of buying the Baby something every time we go to Target (always a dollar or less, times are tough) and we notice those toys are piled up. But give her an empty bottle and she's occupied for the entire day. I guess it helps out with the environment since we are re-using every container we purchase but here fancy toys are being neglected. We purchased the Baby this really nice soft cloth piano that lights up and plays cool songs every time you slap it. But the Baby decides that if you flip over a box it makes a cooler noise when you slap it. So that's her musical instrument. We wanted to get this musical drum from LeapFrog from Target but it was 20 bucks. It's a cool toy but we couldn't justify it knowing that the Baby loves her trash box percussion at home. But knowing us, we'll probably buy it sooner than later. At least it will make a good paperweight/coaster.

Being a parent you end up establishing some sort of routine with your child. The consistency allows for you to stay organized and most importantly, sane. After work, I pick up the Baby from the awesome grandmother's house and the Baby and I go outside to check the mail. We live near a pretty lively and well occupied duck pond, so the ducks enjoy greeting us. They like to greet us by wildly flapping their wings and flying straight up, but it's a greeting nonetheless. The Baby likes to reach over and pry the mail out my hands and eat the bills. If I don't see the bill, that means I don't owe right? I then usually set her ground  and watch her explore the house now that she is an avid crawler. She does an excellent job of scoping out all the random things on the ground and tries to eat them. And when I get up to go stop her from eating the random things, she hurriedly shoves it in her mouth and crawls for safety. She's been learning from the dog. I then usually bring her into the kitchen with me so I can clean it up. As I said earlier, the Baby is an avid crawler now. And she's fast. If there was a Tour de France for crawling, she'd be Lance Armstrong. So the only way to keep Lance Crawlstrong in one place is to put food on the ground in front of her. I put a sanitized place mat on the floor first obviously but I sit her down right in the middle of the kitchen so I can clean. It's not conventional but it works. But then we'll wait for the Wifey to come home from work by partaking in a nice three hour nap. That's the best part of our routine.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Self Feeding

The Wifey and I introduced the Baby to self-feeding and it's been fun to say the least. She has a unique diet of foods that are easy to clean. The messy baby is really cute but it's a hassle to get the bathwater ready every for her. We feed her stalks of broccoli, green beans, corn kernels, carrots, and celery. Pretty much anything she can grasp on her own and shovel into her mouth. The Baby likes to grab her food and carefully examine it. We haven't really introduced any meats to her, however, she does love scrambled eggs.But right now the Baby is a healthy vegetarian.

Currently, her favorite food is carbs. Dr. Atkins would be going crazy if he saw this baby indulge on breads and starches like she does. The Wifey and I can go to our favorite brunch places like Breadwinners and just give her a piece of bread and she would keep herself occupied throughout the meal. Breadsticks, crostinis, pizza crust, and pasta; the Baby is practically a trash compactor for carbs. In order to diversify her meals, the Wifey introduced her to plain yogurt and cheerios. Like I said earlier, we typically try to stay away from messy foods just's messy. But we figured it was Sunday morning and we had nothing better to do than to watch the Baby get dirty in breakfast and give her a morning bath.

She had a grand old time just painting her face with plain yogurt. She obviously bypassed the purpose of a spoon but she did try to use it. And of course where there is a feeding baby, there is a happy dog.

He is pretty useful when I don't feel like getting out the Dyson to clean up the mess. I just sweep everything onto the floor and he goes to town. He's quick, efficient, and he's 100% green. Al Gore would be proud. He was ready to pounce on anything that fell off the table. I think the dog realizes how awesome meal times are for him and the Baby and how messy it can be for us.

And lastly, CLEAN BABY!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

McRibs and Simplicity

Growing up I was enamored with McDonalds. It was a treat for our family to go get the delicious treats at Mickey D's. My parents would come home and say "get in the car, we're going to McDonalds!" and I would rush to find my velcro laced shoes and make a mad dash for the backseat of the 85' gray two door Nissan Datsun my dad would cruise around in. I told the kids in my class that it was the car from Back to the Future and they were amazed. Of course, that was until the doors opened and they realized I was a liar. But anyways, McDonald's was a special treat for us and it was even more special when they would offer these "limited edition" sandwiches and I would go nuts over them. Anybody remember the Super Hero burger? It came out when Batman Forever was in theaters. Just a simple burger: three beef patties, two different cheeses, pickles, lettuce, and tomato on a hero bun.

     So yeah, then McDonalds unleashed this awesome work of art called the McRib and my brother and I went apeshit over it. If one can literally go apeshit, then that was me and my brother. I like ribs. I like sandiwches. I like it when you put a "Mc" at the beginning of it. We would buy as many as we could since it was "limited time only" and it would never be back. And when it would come back the next year, we would buy it again because we really thought "this is the year they stop making the McRib!" But as time passed on and the "limited edition" moniker wore off, I realized the McRib is kinda nasty. It's a meat patty in the shape of ribs. Boneless ribs. And then slathered in their McChicken Nugget bbq sauce which should be used for fries and McChicken Nuggets. And it's a meat patty in the shape of freaking ribs!

I guess my sense of texture and tastes buds have been better developed. Oh yeah and my brain too.

So anyways, the Baby is officially back to sleeping in her own room. She was going through a rough period of bad teething, so she would sleep in our bed since it was easier for us to comfort her. But I guess with all the snoring that goes on in the room, the Baby and the Wifey could never get a good night of sleep. So we had to reintroduce her to her crib and letting her go to sleep on her own. It only took two nights and me staying awake and the Wifey turning off the monitor for the Baby to go to sleep on her own. I would go in there when the Baby would have one of her tantrums and she would be in her crib grasping the bars like she was a prisoner just screaming. Or she would pull herself up and stand there and scream. Eventually she got the idea that she wasn't coming out of her room. and And now the Baby sleeps almost as soon as you put her down and she stays asleep. She consistently sleeps 12 hours a night. Which is ridiculous that we didn't put her back into the crib before. We're also teaching the Baby tricks. Our dog is too dumb and crazy to understand the concept of commands and tricks, so we figured we would start fresh with the Baby. She can now kiss on command, depending on whether or not she wants to be shy. But if you ask for a kiss, she leans over and opens up her mouth and sticks out her tongue for a slobbery kiss; just like her mother. She also loves shaking hands and on occasion will wave hello and goodbye. Babies make the best pets.

The family also ventured out to the Arboretum before Halloween to take some photos and enjoy the really nice weather. We didn't realize it was trick or treating for the kids that day so the Baby was just wearing civilian clothes. But she looked adorable.

This picture is one of my favorites and it just sums up everything about the Baby. She has the soft green grass under her, a cool October breeze on her face, and the warm Autumn sun on her skin. And she has zero cares in the world. While we were taking these pictures, people passing by would stop and just adore her and we knew that the Baby was making them just as happy as we were. For Halloween, the Baby dressed up as "Dronkey" from the Shrek movies. When we would say "Dronkey" everyone thought we said "Drunkie". Although both equally adorable, we went with the more kid-friendly version. We really wanted to find the super cute costume but everything was too big for the petite Baby but everything worked out.

We took this photo at Target's Portait Studio and we were thoroughly impressed. The photographer wasn't aggressive and doing stupid poses, she just let the Baby do her thing. And the best thing about this photo shoot, this was the first time that the Baby sat up by herself for an extended period of time without toppling over. She sat in this pose for a good three minutes. It was just weird because that morning she was falling over like a "drunkie" and couldn't keep up. But then we realized that the Baby is pretty photogenic because we took our holiday portraits with the indomitable Carissa Byers at her studio. And the Baby posed for every single picture. She just smiled and stared at the camera. The Wifey and I didn't even have to make any stupid faces and noises to make the Baby smile. But seriously, look at these photos:

We can't wait for the rest of the photos.

Happy Birthday to Kelly! She thought our baby was so cute she decided to get a daughter herself. Expected due date of 2/19 but everyone knows the 24th of February is the best day ever.  And also a congratulations to Chasity and her new daughter Piper.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Claws and Antlers

I've always imagined being able to tell my kids stories of sports greatness, how I was able to witness history in the making. I could probably tell the Baby the glory days of the Triplets and how they dominated the NFL. I could tell her how Sunday was my favorite day and my dad would tell me and my brother to watch the Cowboys play so we could learn how to be better football players. I could tell her how the Dallas Mavericks were one game away from winning it all or how the Cowboys are the favorites to win every single year but seem to come up short. But this year was different. This year it was the Rangers' time.

Now I will be honest, I'm not the biggest baseball, not in the least. I've been to a few games before, I would even bring my glove thinking I would catch a foul ball but then I found out only 8 year old boys bring their gloves to baseball games. The adults bring their beer drinking hands. I wouldn't take the time out to find out when the next baseball game was and I definitely didn't take the time to watch a game from the first pitch to the last out. Personally, I just never saw baseball as a team sport. The pitcher does his own thing on the mound and each batter has to hit the ball. It's not like football where the line must block and the receiver has to run a precise route. But this year I decided to get a different perspective of America's Pasttime. Nolan Ryan was running the team and the sale of the team was imminent. The experts predicted that the Rangers would have their beat season yet, winning at least 80 games. So I am sure it baffled the experts when the Rangers were the clear cut team to win the AL West almost by midseason. It was just a great season and the Baby was able to experience her first baseball game after being just weeks old.

The Rangers won that game and as we were leaving the Ballpark, someone said "she must be a good luck charm to see a win at her very first game." The Baby didn't even cry when the fireworks busted over head. Maybe she knew we were in for a full season of them. I get to tell her first hand about the drama that unfolded when the team was for sale. I could tell her about the trade rumors and different scenarios on how the Rangers need that "missing " piece. I can tell her about how we got one of the best pitchers in baseball when he had already packed his bags for the Big Apple. Or I could talk about the player nobody wanted but who would end up being the comeback player of the year. Or the "Natural" proving to everyone that he was finally back. I could delightfully tell her the story of when her mother and I were trying to clean up the house and I would take mini breaks to catch an improbable comeback when a "fat kid who can't run good" belted a three run homer to left field to stun the crowd and sending them for the exits. And I am glad I have something to tell the Baby that something great happened the first year she was growing up. Claws and Antlers.