30 March 2007

anyone for croquet?

Matt and Mika gave us a great croquet set as a wedding present. Our last yard didn't lend itself to croquet, unfortunately. The new yard is bigger and flatter so I see us using the set this summer. Oliver is already interested though I'm not sure I want him wielding a large wooden mallet. He can do enough damage without additional weaponry.

21 March 2007

'twas the night before we move

And all through the house..... We've got boxes everywhere. The packers ran out of boxes and quit around 3pm. I had hoped to get a few to use to pack food but that didn't happen. They will have to finish packing tomorrow morning, while loading the van.

Needless to say, Oliver was confused when we brought him home from school. Penguin watched it all unfold and she is confused too. Never having moved as a child, I'm not quite sure what to expect tomorrow when Oliver finds his bed is at the new house. He knows his room well and calls the place "Oliver house" so I am hoping the transition is not too traumatic.

There is still plenty left to do at the new house but let's think about what is done, for a change. The painters packed up their gear and gave me the bill so that is done. The closet systems are also done. Yep, that's about it for complete rooms, though I suppose the living and dining rooms could be considered complete. I look at the hearth on the fireplace and see work that needs doing. And the window treatments too. But really, the house is livable and we'll sleep there tomorrow.

stark white gets color!

The very very white bathroom for the kids to share finally has some color. The faucets are in and I love them even more than I did in the store. Still waiting on the sconces, yellow medicine cabinet, and shower curtain, but this bathroom is usable.

20 March 2007

another visit to triage

I was back at the hospital this afternoon for more monitoring. After nearly four hours of not feeling the baby move, including her usual post-lunch acrobatics, I got worried. After conferring with CD, we decided a call to the OB was in order. (He decided...I was in denial.) Just like last time, she sent us to the ER and triage.

Not surprisingly, about 15 minutes after they hooked me up I had a contraction that seemed to wake her up. From then on they had trouble picking up her heartbeat because she was moving so much.

This must be my punishment for not being ready for the packers to arrive tomorrow morning. Speaking of which, I really shouldn't be blogging now....

19 March 2007

isn't he the cutest thing?

Oliver had a great time at his friend's birthday party, held at the Children's Museum.

He didn't eat the cupcake but managed to wear some of the icing anyway.

all hands

It was all hands on deck when I arrived at the new house this morning. Present were the architect, lead contractor, electricians, plumber, tile setter, counter top installer, and painters. Everyone was working diligently to get the house ready for our move on Thursday.

We have a somewhat better picture today of what will and will not be done. It looks like the master bath will be complete, with the exception of the shower door. We'll be showering in the kids' bathroom for a while.

The closet system installation starts tomorrow. I hope there is room for her in the house!

16 March 2007

good news and bad news

The good news is the quartz arrived today. The bad news (and you knew there had to be some) is that the largest piece, the one that holds the main kitchen sink, was broken during installation. It took nearly two months to get the slabs to the fabricator the first time around. No word on whether we'll be waiting that long for the replacement.

More photos here.

big boys don't crawl

Oliver walks up and down stairs now, just in time for us to move from a split level house to a more traditional two-story with a full flight of stairs!

15 March 2007

tick tock

For the second time today I'm timing contractions. 8 minutes, 14 minutes, 7 minutes, 7 minutes (yikes....maybe we should call), 11 minutes, whew. They aren't getting stronger and are much too inconsistent to bother the doc. Once again baby v2.0, the girl version, is intent on showing me she is NOT her big brother. With Oliver I never went into spontaneous labor and had to be induced. I'll be very surprised if this girl doesn't demand to come out sometime in the next couple of weeks.

more of the jetblues

Regular readers will remember that I spent a delightful 26 hours at JFK in the JetBlue terminal last month. A few days after I finally got home I emailed them and explained what I went through. I didn't leave out the pregnant thing as I told them about trying to sleep on the floor and standing in their endless lines. A few days later I received a response that said, in essence, since it has been a few days we assume you solved your problem.

Later still I got an email saying that if I was entitled to compensation I would hear something by March 15. The whole "Ides of March" irony was not lost on me. I trust it made for good jokes on late night tv but it remained unclear whether their new "Customer Bill of Rights" was going to result in anything being sent my way.

A couple of hours ago, with just 6 hours left before it became March 16, I received an email from JetBlue. They are giving me a voucher for a round trip ticket in the amount of my original ticket. Great, I was thinking. I can give it to my mom or my sister so they can visit when the new baby arrives. And I can avoid seeing their terminal at JFK too. Perfect.

Not so fast....I kept reading and found it is not transferable. I guess that's one way to ensure most of the vouchers they sent out today are never used. Not that I'm bitter, of course. Some people are never happy. Ides of March indeed.

14 March 2007

house update

This is one of those very boring posts that rounds up all the things going on in the new house. We are now one week from moving day and there's still a lot left to be done.

Though the guest bathroom is low priority as we get down to the last few days before we move, progress is being made. The tub surround is installed, as well as the vanity. All the other components for this bathroom have arrived so it should be done fairly soon.

The best news I heard all day (other than the fact that my cervix is "soft") is that the counter tops are going to arrive tomorrow. I should be there to see them as I'm meeting the local babyproofer so she can give the new house a once-over. So many things are waiting on the kitchen and master bathroom quartz that there is now hope I'll have sinks and a backsplash in the kitchen when we move in.

I found a shower curtain for the kids' bath today. It's going to take a few weeks to get here and I hope it is worth the wait. I thought I had found the perfect one at IKEA but when I got there it wasn't quite as it appeared on their website. I had nearly given up finding something fun and in primary colors.

We may not be able to paint on Saturday. The floor finisher is putting the last coat on the wood floors. Oliver's room still needs another coat on the walls before we can start to work on the denim effect. The room for baby v2.0, the girl version, may not see any new paint until after we move in. Should only take one coat though.

The closet systems will arrive on Monday and be installed on Tuesday and Wednesday. The washer and dryer are ready to be hooked up. The wine cooler is not yet fixed. There are lots of new light fixtures to go in (and even more for me to find and buy). All in all, it's coming together.

UPDATE: No counter tops today. They are coming tomorrow. I think I will keep my expectations low.

Giant not-so-Evil

Giant Eagle is the local grocery monopoly in the 'burgh. This sign appears in the parking lot of the branch nearest my current house. It is this particular store's only redeeming feature. I typically drive past three other Giant Evil stores on my way to either the one I can almost tolerate, or Whole Foods and Trader Joe's.

I do love this sign though. I don't have to waddle nearly as far when this parking spot is open.

11 March 2007

23 months

Oliver is 23 months old today. All the usual cliches apply. The time just flew by (except the nights he wouldn't sleep), etc. You all know the drill.

Looking back at old pictures, I'm noticing how round his face was. It has thinned out and now he seems to look more and more like my father.

I think he's been sliding into the terrible twos for a few months now. Telling him "no" still results in exasperating laughter and giggles. One minute he's nearly angelic and the next he's pulling my hair, scratching any exposed flesh I might have, and trying to hit me in the head as hard as he can. Sometimes it's out of frustration at being told he cannot do something but often it's for no reason I can determine. He also continues to "perform" when I arrive to pick him up at school. Until he sees me he is well-behaved. As soon as he notices I am there he climbs on the table, throws books, and may even push a classmate. I try to turn my back and ignore the behavior entirely (unless it seems like someone is going to be injured). He does not like to perform without an audience.

This weekend we tried something new, in an effort to get more of the new house ready for our move in less than 2 weeks. We hauled out the old pack 'n play and put it in the baby's room. Oliver took naps there yesterday and today. They were the best weekend naps he's had in months, and he also stayed very close to his usual weekday schedule. CD got more painting done and I was able to complete a lot of other tasks.

Oliver should be pleased to find his favorite teacher is coming over tomorrow night so CD and I can attend a Lamaze refresher class. We didn't get to use any of it last time because I was induced. I learned all the ways to make labor shorter and less painful but was not allowed to do any of it. I found the whole thing very frustrating. Perhaps we will have better luck this time around. (And speaking of this time around...due date is April 17 but my OB has already said we should induce on April 13 if she hasn't decided to arrive on her own.) Contractions are happening with increasing frequency. I was even timing them last night. I really don't think any eviction notices will be required this time. But then, I was completely wrong last time when I tried to predict how the birth would go.

But back to Oliver....he really loves spending time with Clare and goes to bed for her fairly easily (she says). As we put together a list of potential care-givers when I go into labor, I would love to add her to it. Unfortunately, I don't think it's compatible with her teaching responsibilities. Of all the issues involved in the baby's arrival, caring for Oliver while I'm in labor is the one that's keeping me awake at night. He has never spent a night without at least one of his parents. Aside from his parents, he spends more time with his teachers than anyone else and is very comfortable all of them. It's difficult to line up people he likes as much or has spent much time with. If there were not so much mystery involved in when we will actually need help, I could probably prevail on a family member to fly in and help us. They never need to be asked twice when spending time with Oliver is involved. Like moving into the house, this is another one of those things that is going to work itself out eventually.

What, me worry?

10 March 2007

dada moon me

While I was getting Oliver ready for bed tonight he started saying, "Dada moon me." I think those of you acquainted with CD can probably guess that he's not likely to have mooned anyone in his life, so for a few minutes I was very puzzled. Then it all became clear.

We've been trading off reading bedtime stories to Oliver. He likes to have Goodnight Moon, a lift-the-flap book of baby animals, a large Pooh board book (with entirely botched text), and Dinosaur's Binkit, in that order, every night. Surprisingly, given his morning toast ritual, CD has added Papa, Please Get the Moon For Me to the reading list.

Just as "Binkit Dino" means he wants Dinosaur's Binkit and "night night moon" is Goodnight Moon, apparently "Dada moon me" refers to Papa, Please Get the Moon For Me. Bummer....I was hoping the kid was on to some secret he could share with me.


It's more purple than black but it's Oliver's first real shiner, earned as he was trying to give his favorite teacher a hug and a kiss when he left school for the day. A pesky cabinet got in his way. All for a good cause!

Yes, I know he needs a haircut.

08 March 2007

more sleep

The good news.....I got twice as much sleep last night as the night before.

The bad news.....2x2=4.

07 March 2007

a tired old topic

So we're back to my old friend, sleep deprivation, and too damn soon. I'm mentally prepared for the fun that awaits after baby v2.0, the girl version, arrives but not now!

Last night Oliver decided he couldn't possibly sleep in his bed from about 12:30 - 4:30am. Since I am in week 35 of my pregnancy, it takes me a good hour or more to get comfortable enough in bed to fall asleep, assuming CD doesn't appear during that time and turn on the snore machine that is his head. We took turns trying to get our little monster dear sweet boy back to sleep but nothing was working. I was only able to get him to stay in his bed for 5-10 minutes at a time at most, just long enough for me to get back into my bed, but only sometimes. CD finally succeeded around 4:30 (I didn't hear a rubber mallet but you never know...) and Oliver got up to start his day around 7. That's an hour later than the previous days this week but still....

So by my count, I was awake from 6am yesterday until about 4:30am today. I started having JetBlue flashbacks.

At my usual OB appointment today all seems fine. They are saying my weight gain is fine (2.5 pounds in the last two weeks for a total of about 30), though my mother won't believe that even if I sent her a note from the doc. Blood pressure is still good and the glucose that had been showing up in my urine for the last couple of appointments is lower. I nearly passed out while she was checking the heartbeat, then started to cry because I felt so silly about how much it hurt to lie on my back and how lightheaded I got. Ah, the hormones of pregnancy. From now on it is weekly visits to the doc. And Group B Strep next week. I like it so much better when they leave my hoo-ha alone. When my giant maternity panties stay where they belong I can at least then I can pretend not to remember what lies ahead.

02 March 2007

the world keeps spinning


And work on the new house continues. Here's the dining room with the first coat of paint. See the latest pics here.

01 March 2007


We said goodbye to Chewy this morning. He was in a lot of pain and this was the best thing we could do for him. Doesn't make it any easier though. He was my first Clumber, and the first dog for me after 25 years of living without one. If not for him, a lot of the good things that have happened since 1997 probably would not be. I could not have asked for a better first dog.

Ch Cameo's Charleston Chew CW TD (and 2/3 of a CD -- missed the last leg by all of 5 seconds)
9 June 1994 - 1 March 2007