30 July 2012

Sha La La La.

You may or may not know that I am really into the show Family Ties.  The height of my obsession was in college when I worked late and would get home and watch the show on Nick at Nite every night.  I might have even made my friends refer to me as Mandy P. Keaton.  And when Matt and I were hanging out and watching TV (some things never change?) for the first time after I decided that I liked him, I knew that it was true love when I left the room and returned to find that he'd changed the channel from some sports news crap I wasn't watching to Family Ties.

And, really, what would we do, baby, without us?

Anyway, you can imagine my delight, then, when we were watching Jeopardy! the other night and the final Jeopardy! category was '80s Sitcoms.  We played our usual game, (the one where we try to guess the question before they even give the answer and if we get it right we win in life), and I (duh) guessed Alex P. Keaton.

Here was the answer.

For the win!  Olympics, schmolympics.  I just won in life!

29 July 2012

Weekend Fun

This weekend started off a bit rocky after Baby Charlie got his 4-month shots that left him feeling crappy and feverish.  So we coddled him and cuddled him and catered to his every want (is that really all that different from what we do anyway?), and told him again and again, "It's better than Polio, bud."  I left a voicemail for Shecky on Saturday evening announcing that I'd finally changed out of my pajamas. . .into another pair of pajamas. Shoot.

But today?  Today was productive and happy and glorious!  Matt said it well when he said that he must have an awesome life if he can be so happy after a day of running errands, cleaning the house, and cooking dinner.  Agreed.  Our house is cleaner, our baby is happier, the refrigerator is full, and there's a sweet pup lying at our feet.  Does it get much better?

Well, it would be better if there wasn't an army of evil jumpy frogs waiting for me every time I walk outside.

But we can't win 'em all.

Here's what it's been looking like around here.

 Baking apprentice.

I am obsessed with this cup.  It gets me to drink more water.  Even better, when I am using it I feel like a Nancy Botwin who makes slightly better decisions.

 Full disclosure: I put these books on the mantle only because of their colors.  But now I kind of like the mix. Who doesn't like Sloppy Firsts?

Meal planning!  (Almost all of these are from our new favorite cookbook [that you should go buy right now], Dinner: A Love Story.)

Pasta with sausage and crispy broccoli!  An immediate make-again!  Matt and I fought over who got the leftovers, and I pulled out my trump card of needing the nutrients since I'm nursing our child.

Oh, and I have to share two things that make my heart swell from lately.  The first is that Charlie seems to have a favorite musician, and it is Will Smith.  Whether we're singing the theme song to The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or I'm impressing him with my rendition of "Miami," the kid effing loves clean rap.  The second is that Mitch and Charlie seem to be more interested in one another lately.  I expect this attraction to get stronger as Charlie starts to eat real food (and throw it on the floor around his high chair).  Watch at the end of this video to see Mitch give his camel (favorite toy of the last three years) to his baby brother.

26 July 2012

4 Months!

The boy is four months old!  Horray for him!  And horray for us!  Over vacation, we celebrated a Charlie-versary of sorts, the one-year anniversary of finding out that I was pregnant, which almost seems more significant than his turning four months old. It's been a little more than a year since we have thought of him, obsessed over him, worried about him, wondered what he'd be like (and if he'd even be a he). We've been tracking this kid's growth and development for 375 days now!  And four months is pretty cool.  He's a smiling, cooing, squealing, laughing little buddy.  He's rolling over and over and actually starting to play little games (Charlie smacks elephant off of his high chair onto the floor, I say "Where's elephant?", he laughs, I pick up elephant and place him back on the tray, Charlie smacks elephant off of his high chair onto the floor, etc.).  He's strong and smart and awesome.  Did we expect anything less?

I tried to put together a little collection of pictures that would show how he changes as he grows, and here's what I've got so far.

Oh, Charles, you cuteness, you.

25 July 2012

Home Again!

Jiggity jig, y'all!

(No need to fetch a fat pig from the market, however, as after 10 days of vacation the fat pig is the one sitting here at the computer, typing instead of exercising for the necessary 400 hours.)

We made it!  For the last week and a half, our little family has been wreaking havoc up the eastern seaboard.        What a fun trip it was, too!  So many friends, so many introductions to our young babe (who was, at times, Charming Charlie, at others, Evil Chucky*).  So many laughs, so many hugs, so many glasses of wine, so many rounds of Wits and Wagers.  We can go ahead and put our first vacation in the huge success column.  So successful that I took very few pictures.

(Let's just forget that afternoon when I discovered that my favorite dog on the planet was covered in ticks after too much lake fun.  Grossest afternoon ever, pulling about 100 tiny little ticks off of him and then out of the carpet.  I'll be itching and squirming for months.)


 Meeting Uncle Jordan.

Charming Charlie meets Grampa The Bruce.

We arrived home at about 4:30 a.m. today, and I extended high praise to the Mandy of eleven days ago who freaked out and demanded that the house be clean before we left, and then cussed the universe when I learned that we have new next-door neighbors, and they have 3 yappy dogs and one pitbull who likes to escape.  Lovely.

But we're home.  And happy.  And determined to teach the kid to nap (best laid plans?), to tackle a few house projects, and to finish recharging for the last few weeks before school starts again.

*Also, baby believes that he needs to be held 100% of the day (during which he takes NO naps).  He is currently in his swing, while I pretend not to notice that he's totally glued to the Olympic soccer game.  I decided that this is a case of "choose your battles."  Plus, the Olympics are wholesome and colorful.  And shouldn't Chippy learn to be a global citizen if he's going to be successful later?

22 July 2012


Hey hey!  More to come later when we return to our most humble abode.  We are taking Sir Charles and King Mitch on a tour of the mid-Atlantic, on a trip loaded with swimming and chillaxin' and eating and seeing old friends.

Oh, how I love these boys!

08 July 2012

Three Cheers for Freedom!

This week we had our first little trip away from home.  We loaded up dog and baby and a car full of crap (for serious, why so much crap?) and drove a few hours to see our favorite White Hot friends.  Cassie and I had been planning for this holiday since last summer when we both got knocked up.  While our little fetuses (shouldn't the plural form of fetus be feti?) grew bigger and bigger, so did our dreams of gin cocktails, French 75's and rivers of wine.  When the time actually came, we indulged, certainly, but not nearly as much as we'd planned way back when we were, oh, 25 weeks pregnant and feeling like that was the most tired we'd ever be.* So there were earlier bedtimes and a little more tiptoeing than last year.  Still, how awesome it was to hang out with some of our very favorite people and our spawn.  At times, I'd stop and look around and realize again, "Oh my god--we have babies!"  Bananas, I tell you.**

What was even weirder than the fact that, joining us, were a little half-Hugh/half-Cassie and a little half-Matt/half-Mandy, was that those little babes didn't really change things like I had feared they might.  Sure, we had to focus much of our attention on the kiddos, but we could still hang out, love on our pups, and laugh until it hurt.

 Penelope gave her daddy a hug.

And Charlie gave his daddy an anti-hug. 

Since coming home, I've been trying to get rid of all of the unnecessary crap around our house (seriously, why so much crap?), Charlie's been grabbing things and sucking on them, and Matt and I have been trying to teach/train/beg Charlie to nap.  We're one screaming session away from reading him the book gifted to him by my soulmate.  But we're all figuring it out.

 I think that Panda is possessed.  Earlier today it was just sitting on the mantle and began to play music.  
I'm probably going to wake up and see it sitting on my chest with a knife.

How Charlie feels about naps.  Either that, or he knows that Panda is out to get us.

Oh, and I've been taking Charlie to the Forsyth Park farmer's market on Saturday mornings, which basically means that I get to spend the rest of the week sounding like an obnoxious Portlandia character, bragging about local corn and blueberries.  It also means that I've been eating pounds upon pounds of peaches--so many that I actually burned my face with peach juice.  How does that even happen?

Soooooo, how did you spend America's birthday?  And have you been eating lots of local produce?

*Oh, and nobody likes a drunk baby.


02 July 2012

Not Exciting, Necessarily, But Good.

Life is kind of quiet (Quiet in terms of activity and adventure, but not really noise.  Sir Charles likes to fill silence with his waaah waaaahs.  He's all "Waaaah, waaaaah, give me milk!" and "Waaaaaah, waaaah, hold me!"  Kid totes needs to learn some new words.) around here lately.  I'm still working on adjusting to the reality that I just can't get as much done as easily as I used to.  I've almost accepted it now.  But I will continue to try to cling to my old lifestyle, even if it means that I have to prop Charlie up in his high chair and keep him happy by explaining to him everything I know about baking--how to measure flour, why it's important for the butter to be room temperature, why you MUST read the entire recipe before you begin--if I want to make myself a batch of blueberry pie bars.  Kid's going to win over all of the ladies with cookies in a few years.

Speaking of the ladies, Chucky met his favorite girl again last week, when her mom and dad were in town for the afternoon.  It was kind of hilarious, since I don't think either of them had ever really spent any time around another baby.  

And we've been spending a lot of time around the house, taking turns wrangling the babe, trying to make our house look less like a place inhabited by barnyard animals and giant plastic objects.  We've gone to the beach a handful of times, gone to the park almost daily, and even managed to fit in some naps.  What, what!?

Here's a little bit of what it's looked like around here lately.

I can't get enough of berries in colanders.  

Had to buy a new washing machine.  I hated that we had to get it, but I'm kind of in love with it now.  It sounds like a spaceship!

Dog spotter.

Our house has been overtaken with kid stuff.


Look who's not wearing a cone!

Full disclosure: my laundry situation was out of control today.  Embarrassing.  And here's why I love the 50mm lens.

Mother F!  Who lives here?  A family of gypsy hoarders?

Haha, crazy baby eyes.

The greatest dog who has ever lived.  Earlier this week, he informed us that Lassie was based on him.  Heard.

Hope you have a great Independence Day!  Don't set yourself on fire!  


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