Monday, December 29, 2008

Fevers, and Ear Aches, and Strep, Oh My!

Oh what a week it's been, and there seems to be no end in sight. Christopher was hit hard with strep throat and tonsillitis. High fevers and no appetite had him feeling so lousy. Once we got the antibiotics into him, the strep cleared up quickly. But, unfortunately that was not the end for him, as he developed a really nasty head cold. Just as the week was ending and Chris was starting to feel better, poor baby Joe succumbed to the illness. He has had a lousy head cold and now has a double ear infection. Poor little sweetie. There is simply nothing worse than sick little kids. Needless to say, sleep has been at a minimum for all of us! I feel like I could use a caffiene IV !!! Let's just hope that Joe begins to feel better soon so that we can make our planned trip to Chelmsford this week! We are planning a party to celebrate Chrissy's 3rd birthday with all our family!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

What a wonderful Christmas!

2008 will go down as the best Christmas yet, in spite of Chris being so sick that we couldn't travel to Massachusetts to be with family. It was Christopher's first real "I believe in Santa" Christmas. He really understood the whole concept of Santa bringing toys from the North Pole. Thanks to the story of Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer, Chris also believes in the Bumble, the elves, and all of Santa's other reindeer too! Even though the poor little guy was so sick earlier this week with strep throat, tonsillitis, and croup :-(, he was as happy as can be this morning when he woke up to find that Santa did indeed bring a drum set, a kitchen, and a million other toys for him! It goes without saying that this Christmas is even extra special thanks to the addition of little Joe! What a cutie he is!!! He is such a good little boy, and Santa brought him all kinds of toys including the Elmo that Christopher requested on his behalf.Greg and I are so lucky. We have the sweetest little boys who make our lives so happy and wonderful!
Merry Christmas!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Keep Your Distance, Big Man in Red

It's kind of strange when you think about it. We try to instill in our children that they must be wary of strangers and to always stay close by us and hold our hands. Lest we have them running off with someone we don't know!

Why is it, then, that we expect them to just automatically warm up and beam with delight when they see Santa? I mean really, just look at him. He's big, wears a red suit, and has a long white beard. Not exactly your average Joe.

Christopher has had a long-standing love/hate relationship with Santa. He loves the idea that he gets to request all kinds of toys from him, but not at the risk of getting too close. God forbid he actually have to sit on Santa's lap.
This picture above represents the third time we've seen Santa this season, and it's the closest Christopher has gotten to him.
I will say one thing, Chris certainly got his message across. He boldly said to Santa "I want a kitchen, a drum set, and an Elmo for baby Joe". Mission accomplished!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Shiver Me Timbers! It's a Pirate Playdate!

What a great day today was! Kate and her mom Gretchen came over to our house for a fabulous playdate. The kids really hit it off and enjoyed playing with playdoh, puzzles, and trucks! Kate wore her pirate shirt just for Christopher because she knew how much he'd enjoy it! Christopher thanked her for doing so by getting out the markers and introducing Kate to the wonderful world of washable magic markers!!!

Unfortunately, Kate and Gretchen could only stay for a couple of hours because Kate had to get to her 18 month checkup. After they left, Christopher asked when they were coming back!

Soon, we hope!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

That Perfect Shot for the Christmas Card

Talk about an exercise in futility. This is starting to get ridiculous! Greg and I have been trying since THANKSGIVING to get a good shot of the boys to put in our Christmas card. These guys are just not cooperating! When one looks at the camera and smiles perfectly, the other is looking at his feet. Or worse, crying!
This picture above is NOT going to be used, but was way too funny not to post and definitely captures the mood of the photo session. They had both had enough of us trying to get them to sit and smile perfectly. Joey started his usual routine of blowing raspberries and Chris wanted to watch Charlie Brown Christmas and was basically "done" with the pictures for the night.
Guess we'll try again another night this week, and hopefully will be able to get the cards in the mail before Christmas!!!!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

6 Months Old and Cute as Ever!!!

Today is December 7th and little Joe is 6 months old! Unbelievable!!! This charming little fellow is getting so big and handsome. It's just killing me to think about the fact that I will be going back to work at the end of January.
Joey's favorite activities include spitting out his food at me while I'm trying to feed him and also blowing raspberries at everyone! It's so cute!!!

Joe has begun eating all kinds of foods like peaches, applesauce, oat cereal, carrots, and sweet potatoes. His well-baby checkup is coming up on the 22nd. I'm sure he'll pass with flying colors!

P.S. adorable outfit courtesy Auntie Sue and Uncle Bob!

Cutting Down the Christmas Tree

Our annual tradition of going to Williams Tree Farm to cut down our Christmas tree has become even more special now that we have Chris and Joe to share in it with us.
Every year we strive to get the most perfect Fraser Fir we can find. It's becoming a bit more challenging with babies in tow, but well worth it. Those pre-cut trees just don't do the trick!
Here is a cute shot of the boys near one of the three horses at the tree farm:

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving at Oma's

We travelled to Michigan this year for what turned out to be a wonderful Thanksgiving. We spent the week with Oma, Erika, Mark and their two boys Nick and Ian. A great time was had by all! I think everyone was surprised to see how much little Joe had grown since the last time they saw him at his Christening! Here are a few pictures from that week. We were really happy too with what great travellers Chris and Joe were. We bought a portable DVD player for the car, and armed ourselves with lots of Chris' favorite DVD's for the long ride. Best $99 we've ever spent!!
Here's a great shot of Joseph's Godmother Erika holding him while he sleeps:
Here is Oma holding both boys- great picture!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Time for Plan B

I have a candy bowl filled with Skittles that I use as a secret weapon to get Chris to do things. Like help clean up, use the potty, say please, etc. Yes, I bribe my kids. So what! I like to think of it as the reward system rather than a bribe.
Well, this morning he figured out that if he stands on that chair in the dining room , he can reach the Skittles and have as many as he wants!
Now I need to find a new place to keep them!


You'd think where Joe is my second child that I wouldn't be so fascinated over the idea of him sitting up and playing all by himself, but this has really struck me for some reason.
Maybe because at five and a half months, he still seems so little to me. He looks like a tiny little baby sitting on the floor playing with all the "big boy"toys.

But Joe is growing by leaps and bounds and has been enjoying his new found independence. No longer does he need to sit and be held by someone in order to play with toys. He can sit all by himself and explore his little world around him.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Let's Play!!

Now that Joe has mastered the "unsupported sitting" move, he can get right in on the action on the floor in the play room. Gone are the days where he would look on with envy as Chris played with one of his toys or trucks from his vast collection. Now we can plop Joey right down on the floor next to Chris, and they can play together! And just look at that cute outfit from Aunt Sue that little Joe is wearing!!! Adorable!!!!!!

Sitting up all by himself!!!

I've known for a couple of weeks now that it wouldn't be long before baby Joe was sitting up without any support. This morning we were playing with some trucks, and Joe was sitting in front of me. I noticed that he seemed pretty steady, so I decided to pull myself away to see if he could sit by himself. Well, here's the evidence that yes he can!!! How exciting! Just over five and a half months old and already sitting up!

PS, thanks Aunt Veronica for the adorable monkey pajamas! So fitting for this little monkey!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Joey is on the move!!!!!!!!!!!

Not yet at a full crawl, but really really close!!! Joey is scooting all over the place! Put him down on the floor on his back, and within seconds he has flipped himself over on to his tummy. He has been rotating around on his tummy now for awhile, but just recently we are seeing him scoot around. We think that he may be crawling for real once we get to Oma's next week! Stay tuned!!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Winter has officially arrived, irrespective of what the calendar says. We have snow on the ground! It really is a beautiful sight to see. This year, I decided that since I really have no place to be other than at home with my two kids, I am going to enjoy the snow! It's nice to just be able to sit and watch it fall without worrying about having to drive in it or any of the other challenges snow can bring.
The kids just love it! Chris thinks it's great and couldn't wait to get outside and play. He needs a new pair of boots, though!

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Great Day for Baking!

The first snow of the season is falling today and we are staying inside the house trying to keep warm. Brrrrr! It's only 35 degrees outside! One of my favorite things to do is to get Chris in the kitchen with me to bake something. Our recipes are never very sophisticated. Box mixes with very few added ingredients seem to work best. Today we decided to bake a cake during Joey's nap. It's fun to do, and it's something quiet that we can do together without waking Joe up.

Here's Chris (wearing his Skeleton sweatshirt from Halloween!!!) helping with the mixing stage. He added all of the ingredients himself and is now watching to see them all get incorporated:

And here he is embellishing the frosted cake:

Lastly, the finished product! Ok, so it's a bit early for the Christmas decorations, but the only other sprinkes we had in the house were Halloween themed and we are tired of orange and black!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Because Sometimes One Just isn't Enough.

Not a day goes by where one of these kids does something to bring a smile to my face. I happened to be in the kitchen this morning, when Chris called to me and pointed out his use of the double-"beebee" (he dubbed his pacifier a "beebee" when he first began to speak, and that's what we've referred to it as since). I had to get a picture of it, because he thought he was being so funny and knew it would make me laugh!
Incidentally, I would say that Christopher's lack of readiness (or desire, if you will) to beat his addiction to the beebee has been a serious sore spot with the teachers at the preschool we send him too. Chris will be three in January, and his teachers think he should have kicked the habit by now. I explain to them that it comforts him and he only needs it at certain times and as his parent, I am not concerned even if you are! My Mom has even made comments! She told me she was watching the all-knowing Oprah and that there were two experts on her show who said that children should not have a pacifier after age three. Well, gee, if Oprah thinks three year olds should be able to give up the pacifier, then I better get working on it!
Christopher really only needs his beebee to fall asleep, and sometimes while riding in the car. We have spoken to Dr.Cohen, our family doctor and he says there really is no harm in him using it when he needs to. Other kids suck their thumbs for comfort, and do it well past the age of three. I have to admit, I do wish we could find a way to have him not depend on a pacifier. In some ways I do think he should be able to do without it, but I'm not ready to push the issue just yet.
We'll wait to see how he does when I return to work. If he still only needs it for sleeping, then we'll contemplate having the BeeBee Fairy come to the house.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Yes, I am too cute for words

Joe is one lucky little fella. He has very generous family members who love to shower him with adorable gifts!!
Just look at the cute little bib he's wearing, courtesy of his godmother Aunt Erika. It states, "I'm Grrrrrreat!" And, well, he is. How apropos! (PS, sorry for the rice cereal face!)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

5 Months Old!!!

Our darling little Joseph turned 5 months old on November 7!!! So hard to believe!! Time truly does whiz past us at lightening speeds. It seems like it was only yesterday that I was writing up his 4 month post!! Our little sweetie has grown so much in this last month! He is amazingly alert and aware of all his surroundings. Some of the recent things he's been doing include:

1. Teething or pre-teething anyway. He is gnawing on everything he can get his little hands on (including his hands!).

2. Laughing loudly! Joey has quite a hearty laugh which every one of us enjoy eliciting. Joey LOVES to play with "the boys", a.k.a his Papa and big brother Chris. When Greg is chasing Christopher around the house (Chris' favorite game), he holds Joey facing forward so that he can "get" Chris. Joey laughs and laughs during this game. So cute!!

3. "Stranger Danger"! Yes, it's true. Joe gets a bit frightened when he first meets people or even with people he kind of "knows". But then once he gets used to their faces, he's OK.

4. Full roll. At his 4 month post, he was rolling from back to tummy. Now he can get from his tummy to his back again all by himself!

5. Plays with toys for longer spans of time. He is still very much in the explore phase, and he holds on to his toys for much longer. Studying every aspect of them, including the tags of his stuffed toys!

Love you, sweetie!!!!!!!! XOXOXOXOXO

Friday, November 7, 2008

If It Ain't Broke.....

....Don't fix it!!!
Wise words, that perhaps if I had actually followed, I wouldn't find myself in "blog layout hell".

I tried playing around with colors and fonts, and got myself all messed up! I can't seem to get back to the colors I've been using, and I'm very depressed!

For now, I'll just have to stay with "template default" until I decide I'm ready to play around again without getting to the point of pulling all my hair out!!!
Tonight is a first for Greg and I. We have been invited to a friend's house for dinner this evening, and we've decided to hire a sitter for Christopher. He's going to be three in January, and this is our first night out without him!!! The only time we've ever left him was to go to the hospital for Joseph's birth! Most of our friends think we're absolutely pathetic that we've never gone out without the kids. Greg and I are just not that kind of couple, I guess. We don't need distance from our kids or an evening "away". At least not right now. I suppose this could change with time and as the kids get older, we'll become more comfortable with the idea of leaving them with sitters.
Chris will be with our next door neighbor Rachel, who is a very responsible 14 year old. Her Mom will also be home so I feel very comfortable that the evening will go smoothly!
Fingers crossed!!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

How Patriotic!

Here we are on Election Day 2008! Both boys are looking so Patriotic today, decked out in red, white, and blue!

Well, at least I didn't write on the walls!!

Whenever I need to go upstairs to tend to something for Joe, say a diaper change, or getting him dressed, I usually bring Chris up with me. It's not that he gets into much trouble, but, if left unattended, anything can happen.

Well, today was one of those days where I needed to do a quick diaper change for Joe, and Chris seemed very pre-occupied with his breakfast. I figured I'd just be a minute, and nothing bad could happen in that short a time.

As I walked down the stairs, I found that Chris had created an art gallery of sorts with post-it notes and stuck them to the wall in the foyer!

I'm just very thankful that our steady mantra of "write on paper, not on walls" has actually broken through!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Spring Ahead. Fall Behind. Whatever I Want!

Well, my friends (God, I hope after tomorrow we won't be hearing 4 years of that phrase!), baby Joe has decided that he is not going to abide by the time adjustment back to Eastern Standard Time.

He apparently would like to remain on Daylight Savings Time, thank you very much!
He is going to bed too early! He's waking up too early! His naps are all off kilter!
Whoever thought up this whole "changing the clocks twice a year" didn't have kids!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Kids in Costume at Gymboree!

Today was a ton of fun at Gymboree. All the kids wore their Halloween costumes to their play class! The Moms were all decked out in cute Halloween t-shirts (not to mention the requisite socks) too.
Chris and Joe just love Gymboree. Chrissy has so much fun playing and jumping on all of the equipment. Joey is at the stage now where he can go down the slides with my assistance. Of course, the best part is at the end when they get the parachute out and the instructor blows bubbles and leads the group in song. Whoever invented Gymboree is a genius. It's fun for kids, and Mom's too!!!!
Here are some of the pictures I took today. I also have a video of Chris singing the "Bubbles Song" that I need to work on (the file must be too large or something because I had trouble posting it).

Here's Christopher in his scary Skeleton outfit!
This little girl, Maya, is a sweetheart!And last, but not least, baby Joe looking so festive in his Halloween shirt!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

It's the little things in life........

This terra cotta brown sugar saver came in the mail today from Sur La Table. I have been wanting one of these for a long, long time and every time I go to order one, it's "out of stock".

A popular item for sure!

Simply soak it in water for 15 minutes, pat it dry, and place in an airtight container with your brown sugar. The label says that it will keep the brown sugar soft for up to 3 months.

I got one for my mother as a stocking stuffer, too!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Having Christopher home every day has been wonderful! The only glitch in this whole plan is the nap schedule. These two kids have entirely different personalities and needs when it comes to sleep behaviors.
Joe is quite capable of soothing himself right to sleep. Luckily, I did not have to go through any of the torture of having him "cry it out" like some parents do to get him to be able to do this. I simply learned to read his "I'm tired" cues, and then I place him in his bed with his stuffed animal, and off he goes. This will probably all change tonight now that I've put it in writing!
Christopher is a different story. He requires what feels like an endless routine to get him to sleep. He wants either me or Greg to lie down with him. He needs story after story after story. In between stories he wants to come downstairs for snacks. It's not good at all. How we let it perpetuate into this is beyond me.
So now, naps are really tricky. Chris was used to taking a 1-2 hour nap every day at school (BTW without all of the above described routine....hmmmm).
The only way I seem to have any success is if Joe is already asleep for his nap. Then this gives me time to work on Chris.
Oh well, hopefully I'll be able to figure something out that will work! Or maybe, Chris is just outgrowing the need for naps.

Maternity Leave = House Projects??

Talk about delusional! I need to stop initiating mini projects around here. I start them, and then I never find the time to finish! It's not like taking care of kids every day gives you any spare time to get the house in order. What was I thinking, anyway?
Here's the list of projects around the house that I've initiated and have yet to finish:
1. Linen closet. Just bought some luxurious new bath towels at Linen's and Things (they're going out of business, prices are reduced, but not by much). I need to weed out the older towels that these newbies will replace. Need to organize that closet in general! It's a MESS!
2. Children's clothing. I have piles and piles of clothes that I need to sort through. I saved all of Christopher's clothes, and Joseph has been making good use of them. Once Joe outgrows them, then they go in the "Craig's List" pile. Because I swear I am going to put stuff up on Craig's List. Just haven't gotten to it!
3. Maternity Clothes- I have a tote full of clothing that I need to post on Craig's List. We're done having children and I will not need those clothes again. Yay!
4. The pantry! This one is tough!!! It seems like just when I have it organized to my liking, it gets all messed up again!!! One trip to the grocery store is all it seems to take to throw it off kilter.
Here's the pantry today. messy messy!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Joey Eats Solid Foods!

Big news this evening! Joey ate an entire bowl of rice cereal!! I had been debating on whether or not to start him on solids, and now given how well he did, I'd say we made the right move! I remember when we started Chris on solid foods. It took at least three different tries to get him to finally take some in. Not the case with Mr. Joe. He ate up the whole bowl like a true champ!
Tomorrow, we'll give him some apple juice too. Here are a few pictures from joe's first "dinner".
First: The 'before" shot, with his "My First Halloween" bib:

Now, the "after" shot- not too messy at all!!! I like this so far!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Christopher is finally feeling better after being hit with two colds, one right after the other. I kept him out of preschool all last week, not so much because he was too sick to go, but I thought it best to give him the week to strengthen up. No sense spreading more germs at school, either.

Well, after careful consideration, I've made the executive decision to take Chris out of school and keep him home with me until I go back to work in January. While this may seem like a no-brainer, it was a decision that required much thought. Christopher, like all little toddlers, is a creature of routine and habit. And because I work, a major part of his routine, for as long as he can remember, has been going to school everyday. When I was first expecting Joseph, I planned to keep Chris home with me full time from day 1 of my maternity leave. But then Greg convinced me that it was best to have him keep going at least a couple of days a week to keep him used to his routine, because he has a very difficult time with transitions. It would be one thing if I didn't have to go back to work, but since I do, well maybe it would be best to keep him going part time.

And that's exactly what we've done since June. He goes 3 days a week and it's worked out pretty well.

But after this month with poor Chris getting so sick (and the rest of us too, including Joey!), I thought maybe it's best for everyone if he's not being constantly exposed to the daycare bugs. The holidays are coming, and we have lots of travelling to do. Wouldn't it be great to not be worrying so much about whether we're all going to be healthy enough to travel. Sure, I know that germs come from anywhere and everywhere. But lets get real here. I would say about 95% of what ails this household comes from Chris, and he picks up stuff at school.

My plan is to slowly reintroduce Chris to school in mid January. This will give him time to become reacquainted with his teachers and his friends. I pray that I've done the right thing and that I'm not setting us up for a really difficult transition for Chris when my leave is over. I would hate to put him through unnecessary angst just for my sake.

Fingers crossed! Until then, I am going to enjoy having my little boy home every day and will make the most of this short time together!

Fall- Right outside my front door

You know, there's something really magical about being able to be in your own home during the day. I know that must sound wierd, but when you are normally used to going to the office all day, having the chance to actually be in your own home before it gets dark outside feels like a luxury.
This is the first autumn that we have lived in this house (since we got married!) that I have been home every day, during daylight hours. I really can't get over what a beautiful fall we're having! The colors on the trees are just begging to not be taken granted for. So many people drive to different locations around upsate NY and New England to catch a glimpse of the fall foliage. This year, I am so glad that we don't really need to go anywhere to experience fall in it's full glory. We can simply step outside into our own yard!
Those leaves on the ground will be raked into big piles later today, perfect for jumping in!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Peace and Quiet at last...And I have nothing to say!

I don't know about anyone else, but the best blogging ideas come to me when I have absolutely no time (or free hands!) to actually type up a post. I am typically writing my posts with little Joe in my lap anyway. He seems to have a very keen sense for when his Mom is blogging. He doesn't like it at all. Not one bit. He wants all of my attention, as often as he can get it. And you know, he is just so beautiful that I have to stop whatever it is that I'm doing and smother the poor little bugger with kisses.

Christopher and Joe have both gone to bed. The house is pretty quiet, with the exception of that annoying fuzzy/humming noise those pesky, yet necessary, baby monitors make.

Yesterday, on October 23, Greg and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary! We had a fantastically romantic evening out at the four star restaurant "Champs", with both kids in tow
(please note the sarcasm here!). I have to say, my dinner was lousy! I ordered the balsamic glazed chicken. I was hoping for something on the lighter side, and this was about the only entree (apart from the salads) that appeared "healthy". Well, it wasn't. I came with two ginormous scoops of garlic mashed potatoes that I swear were sitting around for hours, and a veggie side dish that was way overcooked. Nonetheless, our evening out really wasn't about the food or the ambiance. It was about celebrating the life we have made together, and these two beautiful kids we've brought into this world together. They are the most precious little beings we've ever laid eyes on, and they make us both so very, very happy.

When Greg and I first got married, we were not really sure if we wanted to have children. I personally will admit that I spent most of my adult life feeling as though I was not a "kid' person and hence would probably not ever have them.

All I can say is thank God for my change of heart!!! What would I do without these two little guys??? Sure, I would have a quiet and very neat house all the time. I would have a dream wardrobe. I would have complete control of my life. I would have all kinds of time for writing thoughtful posts on my blog (what would my blog even be about without them? Marketing?!?!? Boring!!!).

Thank you Christopher and Joseph for making your Mom and Dad the two luckiest people alive. We are so very blessed to have you!!! XOXOXOXO

Christopher is such a good big brother! He really tries to help out with taking care of little Joe.
Any time that Joe is crying and needs some attention, Chris will run over and try to help out until I can get there and pick him up.
I took this picture this morning of Chris playing with Joey in the exersaucer, showing him how to play with all of the toys that are attached.
Two good boys!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Vaccines- the necessary evil

Ugh! Today baby Joe goes for his 4 month well-baby checkup. And we all know what that means- vaccines! And many of them! Boy did I really hate going through this with Christopher. I think the shots hurt me as much as they hurt him. I was so concerned with giving too many vaccines all at once, at such a young age. I wondered, like many parents do, whether they were to blame for the rise in incidences of Autism and other developmental disorders. There were times when I was downright obsessed over it. Researching on line feverishly trying to find answers. Are they safe or not?? I still had Chris get every shot on schedule, nonetheless. Our pediatrician aligns with the AAP, so he would never recommend not having shots.
I thought for sure this would be easier with Joe since I was more experienced with this, having had Chris get the shots with no issues. But no such luck. I'm nervous about it for sure.
All the evidence out there shows that vaccines are safe. But, every baby is different and every baby has different ways of processing "stuff". All of the vaccines administered by our pediatrician's office do not contain thimerosol, so this makes me feel somewhat more confident about it.
The fact of the matter is this- I am going back to work in January, and these kids go to a preschool/daycare and in order to go, they must get their vaccines. In a way, this makes the decision much easier for me. Just do it.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Peet's Coffee! Not bad but not great either

Yesterday, a package came from my Mum with a ton of goodies for the boys, and a pound of Peet's for Greg and I ( thanks, Mum!!! You are too nice!).
I have been wanting to try Peets, but have not really made much of an effort to go and find it anywhere. I know Wegmans sells a few different varities, but not the whole range. With such great local places like Parkleigh and Canal Town Coffee Roasters who carry their own coffee, you really don't need to search very far to find a good brew.
I was really excited to brew up some Peets today. I am sipping my first cup as I type this post, and I have to say I like it, but I don't love it. It won't replace my favorites like Parkleigh Private Blend, or their Kenya AA.
I love coffee, but have never been a fan of the blends that are bitter or really strong. I am a bit of a wimp, I like my coffee really mild yet flavorful.
Nonetheless, this cup of coffee is going down real nicely, after a night of many awakenings due to a little baby with a stuffy nose!!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Joey's First Head Cold!

Unfortunately, I can add one more milestone to little Joe's list........he has his very first head cold!
He caught it from his big brother, who has been sick since about Monday.
Poor baby!!! Last night, he was up every hour until about midnight, and then he would sleep for two or so hours before waking up coughing again. I feel so bad for this little guy! Yes, I know it's just a harmless cold, but it always seems so much worse for an infant.
I am really hoping that what all the books (and our pediatrician) say is true about breastfeeding passing on specific antibodies to specific illnesses. Hopefully I'll be able to protect Joe's cold from getting much worse or turning into an ear infection!
Regardless, he seems to be in good spirits! Poor little sweetie!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Jospeh turned 4 months old on October 7. I cannot believe how fast time flies! He is growing by leaps and bounds and is just so happy! While I am excited to see every important developmental milestone met, I also know that these are signs that time is truly moving along at too fast a pace.

I have been making sure to cherish every moment because January is just around the corner and it will be time for me to go back to work!

These days, Joe is talking, laughing, rolling over, and playing with his toys. He's just getting cuter and cuter by the minute!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I just returned from an invigoratingly beautiful walk along the Erie Canal. Why I didn't make an effort to do this sooner in my maternity leave is beyond me. This would have surely become the morning routine on the days that Chrissy goes to school. As long as the fall weather stays reasonably moderate, Joe and I will definitely do this more often!

The fall colors along the canal are simply spectacular! I can't believe I forgot to bring my camera! And to think I work for Kodak! I took several shots with the Blackberry and posted them to my facebook. As you can see, the BB does not do justice to the scenery. Note to self, keep the camera in the stroller!

We ended our walk at Starbucks. I was surprised to find that I wanted something on ice, in spite of the fact that the temps were in the 40's during my walk.

Joe slept through it all. The two ladies sitting at the table next to us at Starbucks were hoping Joe would wake up so that I'd take him out of the stroller. No such luck today!
I think the cold front they've been warning us about has made it's way here. Seems a bit colder this morning than it has in recent days.
Hopefully any rain that's forecasted will hold off long enough for baby Joe and I to take a walk. I usually just put him in the stroller when the mood strikes, and we walk around our neighborhood.
I think we'll do something different today. Maybe a walk along the canal. I had been telling myself all summer that we should do that instead of the neighborhood routine, but there seems to always be a reason not to.

There has been an extremely bright star shining every night in the south sky. Greg thinks it may be Saturn. He got his telescope out last night, but had no luck getting it into view. We'll try again tonight if the sky stays clear.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Fall is in full swing here, despite the recent warm days. The leaves are turning beautiful shades of gold, red, and orange. It won't be long before all of those beautiful leaves are covering the yard like a thick blanket.
I've been really enjoying dressing up the house for Halloween!
Christopher has yet to decide what he wants to be this year. He goes from a Wiggle, to a witch, to a bumble bee. I wish he'd pick! We're going to a party on Friday and I'd like to have his costume by then!
Joey is going as a puppy. I found his costume at Target. They have such cute things, it was hard to pick. The puppy outfit was so soft and adorable, it seemed fitting for a soft, adorable little baby!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Score 1 for Marshalls!

Every once in a while you can find some really , really good stuff at Marshalls. I must have been in the right place at the right time or something because today I scored big. They must have just received new inventory of good brands, because I really could have gone crazy in there. With our current economic climate, one must be careful with the spending unfortunately!

I got a very cool Juicy Couture dress. Probably last season, but for $69.99, I really don't mind!
It's a petite, and I love that! Very cool aubergine color that is hip right now. I've bought other Juicy items there before like the ubiquitous velour hoodie and a great pair of sunglassess.

They also had an entire aisle dedicated to Le Crueset and All Clad!! Great stuff too!!! I could not indulge for myself, but I did get a few Christmas presents for others!

I may have to check back next week to see what else is new there!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Well, I went to Eastview today to return yet another item that I purchased from Banana Republic online. Why can't they carry petites in all of their stores? We are the most underserved demographic for sure! I was informed by the sales clerk that the BR stores in Buffalo and Syracuse carry petites. So why not Rochester? Really bugs me!!

Anyway, while I was shopping, I decided to go to Williams-Sonoma. I had a gift card and I needed a few things.

I decided to by a jar of their signature pasta sauce. I thought I would give it a try to see if it's any better than other high-end jarred sauces.

I needed more vanilla, so I purchased the Nielsen-Massey (a.k.a the "good" vanilla by Ina Garten). I also got a jar of cinnamon sugar for toast. Chris is loving cinnamon toast and I got tired of mixing it myself and then throwing away the unused portion. This should make life alot easier!

All in all, a good shopping trip!
Boy do I feel underwhelming these days. Said I was going to make some time to keep this blog going during my maternity leave and I can barely do a post a week!
We have been so busy lately that I never make time to think about blogging, let alone actually do it.

We are enjoying the fall-like weather here in Roch. It gets pretty cool at night, say in the 40's, but nice and sunny and low 70's during the day. Perfect if you ask me.

Great for taking long walks with the baby!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Yum! Fishies!

I wish I could take credit for this one, but I got this idea from Christopher's teacher. Miss Sarah decided to do something innovative with Jello. Their monthly theme was "undersea creatures" and all of their projects corresponded to water, the sea, an the animals that lived beneath.

They decided to make an edible "bowl of fishies" using Jello and Goldfish crackers.

Christopher was so excited about this! We had to recreate the experience at home.

Well, unfortunately I didn't have any blue jello on hand to serve as the water. I only had raspberry. I also only had the multicolored goldfish, and Miss Sarah used just the gold colored crackers.

But, nonetheless, Christopher really enjoyes making the jello and putting the fish in it!!

I can't say that I'm looking forward to tasting it once it sets, though :-))

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Baby Joe is already 3 months old!

It's so hard to believe, but it's true. Little Joe turned 3 months old on Sept. 7. He is so cute I can barely take my eyes off of him. He is such a little love. He is really growing, and is definitely doing more these days than just the usual routine of nap-eat-nap-eat that had been previously filling up our days.

Joey's first smile happened on July 24. Since then, he's been smiling and laughing so much! His recent accomplishments include reaching for the toys on the sides of his crib and grasping them with enough strength to pull them toward him. He can also roll from his back to his side.

Very impressive!!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Maureen's Scones

Christopher has become quite the little baker recently. Our new Friday after-nap tradition is to get in the kitchen and bake up something together. He is really great with following instruction!! I am also enjoying this time together with him. It gives us the opportunity to do something special with each other, and it's also great for taking up some time during the day when you're just about tapped out of ideas for keeping a toddler occupied.

Today we decided to make some scones (Chris calls them "stones"). He had been pretty excited about this all week.
When we first brought Joseph home from the hospital, Maureen, our lovely neighbor, came over to our house with gifts for the boys and a batch of cream scones for Greg and I. They were SO good! She gave me the recipe and I have to say the first time I made them, they weren't so great. They tasted pretty good, but looked awful! I thought for a minute that maybe Maureen "forgot" to put a key ingredient on the list so that my scones wouldn't be as good as hers (a la Marie on Everyone Loves Raymond- when she purposely gave Debra the wrong ingredients for the pasta sauce...). But then I realized that I am just a "scone rookie". Today's batch came out better than the first. I am thinking that maybe one more time at it and they will be good enough to give to a neighbor for a special occasion!!
Here is the recipe for Cream Scones: 

Oven: 425 for 12-17 minutes

2 cups flour
1 Tbs baking powder
3 Tbs sugar
1/2 tsp salt
5 Tbs chilled, unsalted butter cut into cubes
1/2 cup currants (optional)
1 cup heavy cream
Cinnamon + Sugar mixture to sprinkle on top

Place dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl, and blend.
Add in butter, and will paddle attachment blend into the dry ingredients.
(Or cut butter into the dry ingredients with 2 forks, or a pastry cutter).
Stir in currants if using, and then add in the heavy cream.
Mix until just blended.
Transfer dough on to a floured surface and knead a bit.
Roll into a circle, and cut into 8 pieces.
Place scones on to an ungreased sheet pan.
Add cinnamon and sugar mix on top of each scone.
Bake for 12-17 minutes.


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