One year ago today I was in the hospital and Junior was about 5 hours old. I had no idea the journey we would be on for the next three months and that I would experience some of the hardest parenting moments of my life: a visit to the ER, numerous visits to lactation consultants and triple feeding all day and night so he would finally gain weight and kick the jaundice out of his system. 

But here we are a year later. At a year, he’s wearing 18 month clothes and crawling so much and so fast I fear those delicious baby-fat thighs will disappear. 

My baby will always be my baby, just as Future President will always be my baby. But the muscle memory has faded and I can’t even remember what 6lbs 2oz feels like; instead I have 25lbs to carry and snuggle. He’s been waking up at 11 and again between 3 and 4 every night and I don’t mind because he’s my last baby and these nighttime snuggles are so precious. 

Happy birthday, Junior. We love you. 

Four Days Later

I’m sitting in my new house getting more and more agitated by the minute. The internet serviceman isn’t here, nor has the fridge been delivered and I feel like an entire morning has been wasted because there is still more packing to be done at the old house. 

I did, however, unpack all of my clothes, most of the kitchen stuff and I organized my side of the built in bookcase. As a librarian, it breaks my heart a little to say this, but the books are now organized by color.  

 It still needs some sprucing up, but I actually really like the way it looks. I even kept my copy of the Twilight books because I love the spines! 

While unpacking the kitchen stuff, I opened a gravy dish for the first time since it was given to us 10 years ago at our wedding. It’s cracked. I debated a long time about how long to keep spices. I organized my closet in the KonMari method. I made another stack of clothes to take to Goodwill.

So I guess the morning wasn’t a total waste, but I feel very strongly that CenturyLink should give their customers at least a four hour window instead of saying “we’ll be there between 9 and 5.” 

4 Ibuprofen, 3 Large Pizzas, 2 Kids & 1 Llama Trailer

  Home. Owners.

I still can’t believe it, even after three nights in our new house. Maybe it’s because half our stuff is still at the old house and we’re living without a fridge or washer and dryer. Thankfully, the fridge should be delivered tomorrow and the washer and dryer sometime next week. 

On Sunday a few friends helped move most of the furniture into my father-in-law’s llama trailer and after four or five trips back and forth, the old house was almost empty of furniture. Today in working on packing up the kitchen, bathrooms and the last of the clothes. 

I’m debating whether I’ll be ready to throw Junior a birthday party in a week but I’m leaning towards a housewarming party later in the month that might pull double duty as his birthday party. Hopefully by then we’ll have a couch! 

Both boys have adjusted really well to sleeping in their new rooms, which is wonderful news considering Junior’s crib is still at the old house and he’s been sleeping in the pack n play. I was mostly worried about Future President but he is enjoying the new Lightning McQueen bedding I bought and having all of his toys and books in one place. I think it also helps that we visited the new house in all phases of development so he literally has been ready to sleep in it since the concrete was poured. 

Last night I was going through my books and making a huge giveaway pile. I still have English textbooks from high school with notes and quizzes tucked into the pages. My husband cannot understand why I’m getting rid of them. “Look, you got a perfect score on that quiz,” he said. I was pretty impressed myself, considering it was about The Odyssey, a book I still hate. The book and the quiz remained in the discard pile. 

We don’t have our TV hooked up yet, so I’m missing season premier week. However, it’s been nice to stop unpacking to take a moment to enjoy the view from the back of the house. 

Where’s the Pause Button?

As we rapidly approach Junior’s first birthday, I find myself wishing for a pause button, especially because I realize that next fall, Future President will start kindergarten and the two brothers, who have become best friends, will no longer get to hang out together all day, every day.

Yesterday in the car, I couldn’t stop laughing because of the conversation I was having with Future President. He had informed me that Sally and Lightning were going to have a wedding party that night, but he would have to take the party outside because he didn’t want the baby to ruin the party. Then he asked me what happens at a wedding party, so I described our wedding and the reception afterward. His only response: “Daddy danced?!?”

Then I asked him if he was going to get married. “Not until I’m 10 or 11,” he said. “I hope my Nanny and PopPop are alive when I get married to a mommy.” It was too cute, there was no way I was going to try to explain the difference between a mommy and a wife.

Future President still carries a stuffed animal with him on the playground. He loves wearing zip up footie pajamas. He dances and shows off for his brother, and they can spend at least 15 minutes making babbling noises at each other, getting noisier and noisier after each mimic. After bed time, I’ll peek into their rooms: Junior is likely in a strange sleeping position, bent in two at the waist, one hand sticking out of the crib rails; Future President might be making shadows on the wall with his flashlight, or reading a Playmobil catalog, and I’ll just stand in the door way watching them, wishing that┬átheir innocence and joy last forever.

Eat to Live

On Tuesday, September 1, I decided to try something radical until we depart for Hawaii next month. I’m trying the Eat to Live diet, which might be the craziest thing I’ve ever attempted, considering this diet isn’t exactly kid friendly and I’m ending up making two or three separate meals at each meal…as if I had time to spare! But here I am attempting it anyway. Four days in and I can report that it’s very, very hard. Worth it? We’ll see. I weighed myself and have lost weight, but will wait until the end of Week 1 to report how much.

Eat to Live is a nutritarian diet. It boils down to these basics, but you can read more about the dos and don’ts here:

  • Eat unlimited amounts of fruits and vegetables, beans and tofu
  • Limit starchy vegetables and grain intake to 1 cup/day
  • No animal products (including dairy)

I’m easing into this diet, as you’ll see from my daily menus: I have been unsuccessful in avoiding all animal products as well as oil. I LOVE EGGS. I haven’t had a single bite of cheese or yogurt (unless you count the little bit of baby’s yogurt that ended up on my hand this morning at breakfast…instead of wiping it off, I licked it. Oh, how good that tasted!). I also forgot that I’m supposed to avoid all oils and used olive oil in the pan before making scrambled eggs one day. Another cheat: my husband made dinner and was unclear on the new diet rules, so I ate a little bit of pasta along with the sauteed veggies he made.

So I’ve failed already, but I’ve also been very, very proud of myself. For example: yesterday was a student worker’s birthday and I bought donuts for her and didn’t eat a single one. Then a bundt cake appeared in the lunch room and I didn’t have any. Today my boss brought lemon poppyseed cake (my favorite) to work, and I didn’t eat a bite. I went to a Mexican restaurant on Tuesday night and didn’t eat a single chip.

Day 1

  • Breakfast: apple slices, 2 scrambled eggs topped with salsa (scrambled without oil or butter)
  • Lunch: Mason jar salad consisting of balsamic dressing, beets, apples, celery, bell pepper, lettuce; banana (the balsamic dressing should be balsamic vinegar only; salad dressings must have no oil. This diet has a huge learning curve!)
  • Dinner: Salad consisting of arugula, jicama, pineapple topped with peanuts and pepper; side of rice and beans (the rice was slightly more than the 1 cup of grains allowed per day)
  • Drank 1 cup of green tea and 1 cup of English Breakfast tea (this is more caffeine than is recommended on this diet, but something’s gotta give!)

Day 2

  • Breakfast: tofu and mushroom scramble, peach slices
  • Lunch: Mason jar salad consisting of balsamic dressing (again, another oops), tomato, cucumber, mushrooms, garbanzo beans and lettuce; apple and raisins
  • Dinner: 1 cup of pasta (a huge no-no) with roasted veggies and tomato sauce; salad with avocado, dried cranberries, carrots, bell pepper and cashews (the cranberries should have been omitted since I already had raisins)
  • Drank 1 cup of green tea and 1 cup of English Breakfast tea (still too much caffeine)

Day 3

  • Breakfast: coffee with almond milk; two scrambled eggs (made with olive oil, oops) topped with avocado, tomato and salsa
  • Lunch: Massaman curry with rice (after I ordered, I realized this curry has potato in it, so I was well over my 1 cup limit of starchy vegetables/grains. This was a pre-planned lunch meeting and I couldn’t figure out what to order that fit this diet. Anyone know what’s safe at a Thai restaurant?
  • Dinner: Lettuce wraps with tofu, mushrooms, edamame, water chestnuts, pineapple and low-sodium soy sauce
  • Drank 1 cup of green tea

Day 4

  • Breakfast: coffee with almond milk; tofu mushroom scramble with basil
  • Lunch: leftover lettuce wraps, banana, peach
  • Dinner: sweet potato (1 cup) topped with prunes; salad with cucumber, tomato, carrots, bell pepper and dressed with balsamic vinegar 
  • Drank 1 cup of English Breakfast tea and one Diet Pepsi (also not allowed but I’m a rule breaker when necessary!) 

If you’re considering this diet, I highly recommend Kristen’s blog, My Momma Told Me. She provides a lot of guidance for the six-week plan as well as recipes. I’m excited for my 1/2 cup of steel cut oatmeal tomorrow! 

    11 and Change

    As was bound to happen, my planned monthly baby updates have been neglected. Today Junior is 11 months and 3 days old. My baby is almost a year. I can’t believe it.

    He’s FINALLY crawling. It’s taken a lot of physical therapy, but about three weeks ago, he started crawling and now crawls so fast, you wouldn’t know that he had any sort of delay. He is into everything. Why don’t babies want to play with actual baby toys? He would much rather play with electrical cords, picture frames, paperback books, and small toys that belong to Future President. I’m thinking we might need to get a fence to keep him out of big boy toy land instead of making Future President play with his small toys in his room. 

     Junior is very verbal and has been making more and more sounds that might be words: “uh oh,” “no no,” “dada,” and “mama” are on constant rotation. He also loves making funny noises with his tongue and lips. I’m thinking he’ll learn to talk sooner than his older brother.

    He continues to wear the cranial band for his flat head, and it doesn’t seem to bother him at all. I’m taking him to be measured today to see how much progress has been made, and to get a better idea of how much longer he’ll need to wear it.

    He loves food. I’ve given him tofu, pasta, black beans, avocado, banana, falafel, blueberries, strawberries, and more. He’ll eat it all. He’s getting a little better about feeding himself small pieces but I still can’t trust him to only put a little in his mouth, so if I give him a large cracker, have to watch him very closely.

    Junior’s favorite thing is water. He loves bath time and the pool. We went to Sunriver last weekend and he cried when I took him out of the pool even though it was so cold because of high winds. I hope we can start him in swimming lessons soon.


    I have a bunch of long blog posts written in my head but at night when I go to write them, I’m too tired after waking up before 6 with a baby who thinks it’s party time. Oh, and it’s 83 degrees…inside. I can’t do anything except lounge on the couch and watch reality TV. 


    I saw Trainwreck a few weeks ago. It’s hilarious and raunchy and I love Amy Schumer’s outfits in the movie. I fell in love with one dress and scoured the internet looking for it. I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I called in my super sleuth BFF and she found it!! It was even on sale at Anthro for $19.95 at some point last year, but of course now it’s only available on eBay and in consignment stores. The hunt is on!


    Anyone else watching Big Brother? At the beginning of the summer I vowed this year would be different and I wouldn’t waste hours of my life on a dumb show. Yet here we are halfway through another season…let’s hope Vanessa and Shelli get voted out in this week’s double eviction!


    Project Runway fans out there: what do you think of this season? I get the impression a lot of the designers were cast for extra drama, not talent. But Ashley? Love her, love her hair! Wish I was gutsy enough to have purple hair. 


    The search for cheap flush mount lights continues. We are nearing the end of our home building project and I’m ready to throw my hands up and say, fine, just install the boob lighting and we’ll deal with it later when we have more money. 


    Today I drank four cups of coffee and made a Brie and apple grilled cheese for dinner. I live an exciting life, dontcha know?