Friday, December 31, 2010

I want my baby back, baby back, baby back...

I came home to Minnesota on Tuesday and Liz and Jude flew up north to Sacramento to see her family.  Since I took so much time off in February when Jude was born, I had to work (for the first time in my life) between Christmas and New Year's.   

I always knew that I wasn't the kind of person who liked "me time."  Or maybe it is just that I only need about 5 minutes of "me time" every day, and the rest of the day I want it to be "we time."  So it is expected that the last four days of hanging out by myself have been a little much for me.  I just don't want to know that much about myself (like the fact that I would eat junk and only junk if I didn't have Liz to keep me in line).

It sounds like Liz and Jude had a fantastic time -- Liz can give you a report on all of the antics with the cousins.  He even had his first experience walking behind a push toy.  What a big boy!  You never know how much they change until you don't see them for four whole days!

Here are a couple of photos of the whole family.  Baylee and Aubrey sure looked like they had a fantastic time hanging out with their cousin Jude!

The good news is that since we got our iphones for our birthdays, Liz has no excuse but to send me pictures of Jude's day by day.  Good news: I get to see lots of pictures of Jude.  Bad news: The pictures make me miss Jude! 

Mama sent me a "good morning" picture of Jude waking up in Sacramento...

And then I also got a couple on the plane ride back thanks to Delta's in-flight wi-fi!

Before take-off...

Munching on a biscuit before nap time... sleeping.

I can't wait until they get home today to celebrate New Year's Eve with my little family!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Ju-ju the Wonder Baby

Every day I am amazed by Jude. I mean, it's really incredible to see him grow and develop almost literally right before our eyes, but sometimes what amazes me most is his adaptability.  Since we've been here in LA, we've really mixed things up for him.  While we've tried to keep his schedule as regular as possible, we go somewhere new every day, there are so many new people who want to play with him and talk to him and hold him.  I can imagine that would be exhausting!  Yet there we were at a holiday cocktail party this evening, and Jude was just great.  He was cute and charming and... well, it was just so great to just sit back and watch other people enjoy Jude as much as I do.  And he ate it up!  Despite a short afternoon nap and a late bed time, he was a trooper.

Jude really showed off his adaptability when we visited Santa yesterday.  Frankly, I wasn't looking forward to it.  I thought we'd be dragging him to the mall, standing in line, and giving him a later nap time all for the privilege of paying $25 for a picture of a terrorized, screaming baby.  But oh, how I underestimated my adaptable little guy!  I set him down on Santa's lap and stepped back.  Jude was fascinated by Santa!  He couldn't stop staring at him and running his fingers through the REAL beard.  The elves stepped in a ticked his chin with a feather duster and viola!  They snapped an amazing Christmas picture... I was so so proud!

And while his adaptability is what I'm most surprised by, California must agree with him because he's reached several milestones while here: He's waving (!), cruising around the soft furniture, and forgetting he doesn't quite know how to stand and letting go, if only for a moment.  

And all the while I marvel at the differences between this year and last year.  Last year, I was enjoying baby showers and fretting about my blood pressure.  Now I'm marveling at the amazing little guy that I am so excited to spend Christmas with.  

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Who said it never rains in Southern California? They lied.

We arrived for family Christams on Sunday, December 19th.  And it was raining.  We didn't really care, because rain is better than snow which is better than rain/snow mix.  Then we woke up on Monday morning.  It was raining again.  Or still.  Then we woke up on Wednesday morning.  Rain.  Rain.  Rain.  Which leads to Storm Watch in Los Angeles.

Rain always leads to some drama in my parents' house.  This year, the drama has included:

  • Plastic draped over the balcony to prevent a flood in the guest room below.
  • A hole chopped in the garage ceiling to release water that was pooling there and making the drywall sag.
  • Siphoning the pool using hoses. 
  • Circuit blowing on the electricity that runs the pool hoses for siphoning.  
  • Dishwasher breaking with a full load of dishes inside.  (This was not a direct result of the rain, but drama nonetheless).
I think that if one more piece of the house breaks, Grandma might break, too.  Aunt Megan, Uncle Andrew, Grandpa, Mama and I are working to keep her distracted.   However, the weather is looking up!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Since the day that Jude was born, I have been waiting for his first Christmas.  I wrote a song in honor of it.

On the first day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me a smile underneath the big tree.

On the second day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the third day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the fourth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the fifth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the sixth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the seventh day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me seven photos with Santa, six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the eighth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me eight tickles from Grandpa, seven photos with Santa, six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the ninth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me nine nights of good sleep, eight tickles from Grandpa, seven photos with Santa, six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the tenth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me ten days with family, nine nights of good sleep, eight tickles from Grandpa, seven photos with Santa, six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me eleven snotty noses, ten days with family, nine nights of good sleep, eight tickles from Grandpa, seven photos with Santa, six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

On the twelfth day of Christmas my JuJus gave to me twelve poopy diapers, eleven snotty noses, ten days with family, nine nights of good sleep, eight tickles from Grandpa, seven photos with Santa, six frosted cookies, five sippy cups, four sticky bows, three footed jammies, two mommies laughing, and a smile underneath the big tree.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Blues and Surviving the Plague

Let's just say Jude's first Thanksgiving wasn't quite what we'd expected it to be.

First there was the Monday before T-day: we literally walked in the door from his 9 month "well baby" appointment, and the vomiting began. 6 times in four hours, to be exact. After the second time, we were on the phone with the 24 hour nurse line and Lindsay was off to Walgreen's to pick up some Pedialyte. It certainly wasn't fun, and that's definitely the most vomit I've ever had on me in my life, but we made it through the night. I stayed home with Jude the next day and we thought that was the end of it. But Wednesday, Lindsay woke up throwing up, too. So far, Thanksgiving week was promising to be awesome.

We got ourselves together, and by Thursday were good enough to make the 7 hours drive down to Illinois. It was great to see the family, and Jude had his first official "kid table," complete with cousin Quentin picking up his sippy cup every time he dropped it.
But by 3 am, I'd been hit by the plague, too. So I wound up spending the day on Friday eating Saltines and ginger ale and trying not to get too grossed out by all the things you can do with leftovers they were showing on TV.

And while the week really hadn't been much fun so far, it all got worse on Saturday morning when we woke up to SEVEN more members of Lindsay's family with the same thing. We'd totally brought the plague to Thanksgiving. So what did we do? We packed up our things and drove back to Minnesota a day early.

Here's hoping our Christmas in California will be better....

Jude was feeling better and had so much fun with the family
Layli and Jude, munching their turkey dinner at the kids' table

Saturday, November 27, 2010

9 Month Check up

It's official - I gave birth to a giant. They took all the usual measurements at Jude's 9 month check up and it turns out he's HUGE! Here are his stats:
Weight: 21 lbs, 13 oz, 75th percentile
Length: 31.5 inches, GREATER THAN 97th percentile
Head: 18.25 inches, 75th percentile

A few days later, Lindsay and I were in Target where there was a sizing chart. 31 inches means he should be wearing clothes for an 18 month-old! I mean, most of his pants do fit like capris, but we've had to dig in to the 12-18 month clothes that we've been handed down. Good thing we have such generous friends!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Hot Saturday Night.... Redefined

Earlier in the day today, Lindsay said, "I feel like we never do anything fun anymore."
A little piece of me dies each time she says something like that because..... I know it's true.  We were never big partiers, didn't really like to go out to drink, and though we loved eating out, we probably wouldn't go to any place fancy unless it was some kind of special occasion.  Lindsay's been in school for the past three years, afterall, and truth be told, I'm really more of a homebody.  But I think the thing is that we *could* have gone out and really whooped it up if we'd wanted to.

So now that we have responsibilities and a baby that takes consistent naps (I seriously never thought the day would come), our weekends are planned in 2-3 hour increments and spontaneity has been sitting on the shelf, collecting dust.  And then there are our weeknights which are... ... hectic and highly routinized, to say the least.  

But tonight is daylight savings, so we were trying to keep Jude up a little later than normal in hopes that he'd sleep until a more regular time in the morning (you moms who have done this before - don't laugh).  We let Jude have a little naked time and somehow we found ourselves in the kitchen - all of us - hanging out on the floor.  I've got to say, I never really imagined we'd be hanging out on the kitchen floor, but there we were.  Jude was playing with his favorite toys of the moment - a small wooden bowl, one red linker ring, a book, and a small squash (don't all kids play with vegetables?) and guess what?  We were having so much fun.  Jude was being so funny, clowning around for the camera, smiling at Sully, and making funny noises with Mommy.  I plopped Jude in my lap to sing one of his favorite songs, Lindsay busted out the video camera and.... well you can watch the video.  Let's just say I may have let a little pee come out, I was laughing so hard, and Lindsay claims that her sides now hurt from the hilarity that ensued.

A fun Saturday night, indeed.

So I wanted Lindsay to film it again and......

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Jude Meets California. They fall in love.

Jude had his first trip to the Golden State October 14-17.  This was his very first chance to be exposed to the entire California Hey clan, and I believe that he handled himself pretty well.  Although he isn't yet old enough to play "What note is that?" or make ear-piercing comments about the Colts, he seemed to fit right in.

It was so special for him to meet Grandpa and Megan for the first time.  Jude made friends with both of them instantly, and I can't wait for him to see everyone at Christmas again. I am so lucky to have a family that has so much love to give.

Megan took some amazing pictures of him.  She is an extremely talented photographer, but as I said to my mom, it doesn't hurt that the baby is really.  frigging.  cute.

Baby up in the air!

The Uncle Series 1

The Uncle Series 2

The Uncle Series 3 (Forest Gump and Lil Forest)

The Uncle Series 4

Grandma presents Jude with measuring cups...

Oooooohhhh....measuring cups.

Don't even think about it, Grandpa.  These are my cups.


Jude and Grandma in their pjs.

Mommy, these guys are so funny.

California knows how to party.  See you in 2 months!

Friday, October 22, 2010


..... the baby gate is up!  "Crawling" isn't quite the right word to describe what Jude is doing.  He can back up and pivot - no problem.  In the past day or two he's been working a funny little inchworm thing, but he's not moving terribly quickly.  But the paranoid mom in me knows that he'll pick the moment when I have my back turned to decide to take off.

Sully is just grateful that it's the kind of gate that has a door so we can use a bungee cord to hold it open when Jude is asleep. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Mommies' Day Out!

Yesterday was the first time we have been out and hired a REAL babysitter.  Not a friend.  Not someone who was doing us a really nice favor by watching our first born child.  A babysitter named Andrea.  Okay, it's not like we found her on Craigslist, she works for Liz.  But we paid her in real dollars.  The excuse, you ask?  Sarah Denney and Ben Johnson's wedding! 

Liz and I left the house at around 1pm and headed out to the wedding.  The day was amazing...record-setting temperature of 84 degrees.  Since the wedding was outside, we got to take advantage of the great fall day.  The leaves were changing, and all through the ceremony they fell from the trees around Sarah and Ben.  A completely magical day.  Then around 4, we headed over to Gale Woods Farm for the reception.  We didn't even call Andrea ONCE on our drive over to the reception.  Full disclosure: she did text us around 5 to tell us that both of the boys (Sully and Jude) had been fed and walked. Fantastic!

While Andrea was taking care of Juders, we were posing for pictures with our friends Donna and David . 

 The woman who took our picture was a little crazy.  Who knows how we look, but the scenery is great!
 And the bride wore cowboy boots.  LOVE IT!

We did leave the party around 8pm to come home and relieve Andrea, but we had a GREAT 7 hours out.  She didn't have any trouble getting him to sleep, and all was right with the world when we walked in the door.  Jude slept until about 715, so it looks like he had a good time hanging out at home with Andrea. 

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Jude in Stripes...a photo montage.

Liz is obsessed with putting our son in stripes.  Here is a montage of some of his best stripey moments.

Solid sleeves stripey.

Rugby shirt cell phone stripey.

Stripey bottle time.

All over stripey.

Stripey no-pants.

Stripey with a chance of belly button.

Tiny bundle of stripey.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

So he isn't going to be a turtle

Liz and I had an irrational fear.  Fast forward 12 years.  Jude is at a slumber party with a bunch of his friends.  They spread out all of their sleeping bags on the floor.  In the morning, they wake up.  All of Jude's friends get up for breakfast, and our son just lays there.  And his friends say, "C'mon guys, we gotta go get Jude.  He's just laying there...he's stuck."  His friends would help him to roll over and get up, and then they'd lovingly call him Turtle, a name that would stick with him until his adulthood.

Recently, that fear was eliminated when Jude showed off his skills and rolled over!  He was thrilled to roll from his back to his front...again and again!  And ti looks like he is enjoying tummy time so much more now that he gets to choose when it starts.  We aren't quite ready to to roll back, but we know that it is coming soon.

I'd like to comment on the comments and you can comment, too (comments, please)

I would very much love for anyone who's reading this here blog to comment on our posts every now and again - even if it's just to say, "hey!  I feel ya, sistahs!" or, "GET OUT!  I can't believe that!" or, "OMG I can't believe you would put your baby in that outfit" (actually, please don't write that last one).  Our plan in life is to one day have most of our posts turned into a book that we can keep forever and ever (I mean, what if the internets aren't forever?), and I'd looooooove to be able to include the comments of you, our loyal readers. 

But many of you have emailed me/facebooked me to tell me you can't comment - something about blogger won't let you do it.  People - I am here to tell you right now that I have gone into the blog settings about 15 different times and examined every possible setting and have not been able to find a single reason why people can't comment.... until today.  After doing some research on the world wide web, it seems that if I tell blogger that I want comments to be embedded in posts, there's some kind of bug and it just doesn't let anyone comment.  WTF, Google.  Isn't this something you can fix? 

Anyway, the point is that I think I've fixed it. I *think* you can now comment away!!!!!!  Try it!
(And while we're on the subject of comments - several of you have emailed me/talked to me to say that you share a lot of the feelings I expressed in my post about stress.  You guys are awesome and that's one of the things I've loved about having a blog - knowing that I can put something like that out there and get that kind of support back.  I love you, fellow mamas!!!!)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

He's a Real Minnesotan Now

Not long after we moved to Minnesota, we learned that REAL Minnesotans go to the State Fair. No. Scratch that. REAL Minnesotans take days off of work to go to the State Fair, go multiple times (in a twelve day period), and passionately debate the relative merits of the Miracle of Life barn.

We've done our best to assimilate to the Minnesotan way of life and as much as we love it here, I think we'll always be Californians. But that doesn't stop us from going to the fair (we just limit it to once a year and we don't take any days of work, thankyouverymuch). Babies don't stop us from going, either, apparently.

Here's sort of how the conversation went this year:
Liz: Are we going to go to the fair this year?
Lindsay: Yeah... I was thinking we could.
Liz: Is that a crazy idea?
Lindsay: I think Jude would like it.
Liz: Yeah, but how do we get there?
Lindsay: I think we can just take the bus like normal.
(notice that Lindsay is acting like there's no reason why we shouldn't go. Deep down, she's waaaay more nervous about taking a 6 month old to the largest event in the state that I am)

But we did it... and here's what I learned:
1. Buses and babies aren't that scary. You just fold up the stroller (thank goodness we have one that folds up easily and compactly and stands on its own) and hold the kid on your lap (we opted to put Jude in the carrier)

2. You can be in the middle of the midway, and your baby can snooze away.

3. If your baby does happen to wake up in the midway, he's going to think you've taken him to the craziest place on Earth.

4. Mommy can win a super awesome prize for you

5. Babies can eat food on a stick, too

6. At the end of the day, babies and grown-ups alike are dirty, exhausted, and ready to go home
7. But not before making friends with the baby sitting next to you on the bus on the way home

They don't call it "The Great Minnesota Get-together" for nothing....

Until next year, little Jude.