Simon Says

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31 May 2012

"do you think we should be worried that Sebastian cares about absolutely nothing?"

After seeing my choice of footwear for a walk around the neighborhood, Simon said, "generally how long do sandal styles stay in fashion? because I'm hoping those are about to expire."

While Julia was machine gun whining about something seemingly urgent on the same walk, Simon said, "at what age is she is supposed to grow out of this personality?"

Regarding one of my less than stellar blog posts earlier this week, Simon said, "it definitely wasn't a home run ... maybe more of a base hit."

After drinking a Margarita and then picking up Sebastian, Simon said, "hopefully he gets a whiff of my breath, becomes intoxicated, and then passes out for the night."

In response to me kindly telling him that he had a something on his face during dinner, Simon said, "thanks but it's called a 'Sloppy Joe', not a 'Neat and Tidy Joseph'."

instavida (overload)

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30 May 2012

1. who knows
2. light as a feather

3. recreation
4. rearrangement

5. light as a feather again
6. mom trapped in a Julia body

7. fake smile and mini skirt, lost at the zoo
8. genuine smile, buying ingredients for the Fulwiler Margarita

9. curse
10. like father like son (obvi)

11. fuel
12. for the 'pock'

mysteries (3)

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29 May 2012

almost got him. on the brink of mother's helperdom. I'm sure.
[unrelated to post - I just thought this photo might improve your quality of life because it is so unlike all the rest of the photos I post]

*[also unrelated but most importantly] ... go peep Cari's Snapshots from a Sunday post ... never not a treat.

About once every few weeks the kids both have a really bad night. It's as if they conspire to make the few peaceful hours of our lives pure misery to keep us on our tippy toes. I do a good job of blocking those awfuls out but this morning I found my pillow at the bottom of the stairs as evidence of the torture. I'm the world's worst, lightest, and most high maintenance sleeper and definitely require a pillow or ten to slumber and I don't remember why or how the pill got there. At all. Ohhhhhh, the things that plague me. Julia sleeps downstairs (to protect me from predators when Simon works nights) and Simon said I was probably just suffering a little bit of nighttime "mom rage on the way to deal with Julia -- nothing to worry about". I'm sure he's right on both counts.

I went shopping for a non-maternity swimsuit for the first time in a long time today. I would just like to know who on God's green earth designs swimwear these days? It most definitely cannot be anyone that has ever gestated or lactated at any point in their life. I've got unsightly hips to cover and teeeeeeeny tiny former food sources that don't need to be swimming in built in helmets. I was hopeful that Joanna's Old Navy suggestion would work but I was stuck between two sizes so I went with something involving the words 'control max' which is basically Lycra perfection -- if that is even possible.

Julia has suddently re-entered a cling-to-mom-always-always-always stage -- even freaking if I'm not in the same room as her, her three fur blankies, two sippies, and one empty baba. She went through a similar phase right before she turned one and I'm hoping it is similarly short-lived. Or I wish I could figure out what in tarnation I did to deserve such an unjust (seemingly) eternal punishment.


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28 May 2012

I didn't think that the joy that was Christmas day when Sebastian wasn't quite 2 months old and was certainly not his laid back self yet and Simon was on his 8th day of working 12-14 hour shifts in a row and Julia was inexplicably projectile vomming everywhere could ever be topped. But yesterday gave it a serious run for its fun. Oh, you don't want to hear another broken record of a complainy post? I'm almost sorry.

Like most Sundays when Simon is working, I got the kids ready for Mass (including packing up Julia's caboodle of crap) we drove to meet him at the hospital for Mass in the hospital chapel. Of course, a patient (selfishly) decided to time her needs for the exact hour that Mass began and left me and kids (very patiently) waiting in the parking lot. I eventually put on my grown woman pants and heaved Sebastian inside while walking as fast as Julia's little legs would take us which was v-e-r-y s-s-s-s-s-l-l-l-l-l-l-l--o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-w-w-w--w-w-w-w-w.

 "Hello, my name is Julia and I am the proud owner of the 'slowest walker in public ever' title"

By the time we slinked into the back at 9:06 the Gospel was being read because this is probably the fastest Mass in the whole entire universe. And by the time Simon ran in a few minutes later, the inaudible homily was practically over. I was temporarily blinded by annoyance (not anger, never anger -- I am a saint) and don't exactly remember but I think there may have been some whisper-barking about priorities and residency and priorities again -- I think. We got through Mass with Simon's pager only going off twice and his phone only getting a zillion urgent texts that were not at all disruptive. I knew that I deserved a hospital cafeteria donut or 12 for my good behavior but apparently an unscheduled c-section had other plans for my grumbling tum

I shifted gears and set my sights on some not that fast but still kind of fast food down the road. After discovering that Chick-Fil-A is (still) closed on Sundays (which I support but am not exactly pleased about) I gunned it to Dunkin Donuts and praised the good Lord for the invention of the drive-thru window. Surely the inventor had mothers with children in car seats in mind when he bestowed that brilliance upon America. Surely. We met some friends at the park where Julia efficiently and pungently evacuated half my coffee and all of the donuts she ingested into her diaper and Sebastian broke and ate my favorite necklace that I was stupidly wearing.

After driving home and walking a sleeping Sebastian almost inside while watching Julia Molasses Patton "walk" inside, Sebastian followed Julia's Christmas day suit and projectile vommed allllllllll over the back of my dress. I pleaded with Molasses to please hurry and as soon as we got all the way in the door he erupted again -- and again -- and again -- and again. Julia happily narrated the entire thing, "poooop!!! pooooop!!!" so that was nice. He smiled happily while I unhappily cleaned the gross and pealed my dress of my person. Before I had had a chance to put a different set of momclothes on I noticed that Sebastian's sprint slither to the toilet had left a path that looked like poooop!!! And it was. All the way up inside his neckfolds -- much to Julia's diaper-change-watch-loving delight. It's a good thing I was wearing my hazmat suit of no clothes because it made cleanup a lot easier.

I guess the climbing action of the story sort of stops there. He continued the vomfest after his nap which only worried me because his diaper was totally dry (miracle -- never happens) but some diluted Pedialyte down the hatch seemed to cure his ailments and he is back to his overly happy self today.

 "Hello my name is Sebastian and I know how to turn sinfully lax moms into crazy hypochons"

I have to admit that I not at all begrudgingly hired Barney  this morning to watch the kids while I showered off the dried remnants of Sebastian's short-lived bug, spot cleaned my pajama jeans, and (most importantly) "dear blogged" all about yesterday. De nada.

I'm still not laughing about Christmas so we'll see how many weeks, months, years, decades, centuries, or lifetimes pass before I can manage a forced smile over the joyous memory of this interminable weekend.

peanut butter cheesecake

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27 May 2012

actually ... it's more like
I can say that because this isn't my recipe -- it's my mom's.
(also, I won't claim that it's the prettiest peanut butter cheesecake in the world but this particular piece did endure a long and arduous trip around the house in the tight and sweaty palm of Julia's hand -- hence its less than perfect appearance)

I won't dilly dally ... except to say that (after carrot cake) this is my absolute favorite dessert of all time. I've tried lots of different recipes and restaurant bought cakes but this really is my favorite and I am the best judge in the world. Just kidding. Maybe not.

1 9 inch graham cracker crust
(I like this recipe but I use brown sugar instead of white sugar and am pretty generous with the butter)
1 cup chunky peanut butter
2.5 cups powdered sugar
8 oz. softened cream cheese (full fat!)
1 tsp vanilla

Just blend everything except the 9 inch graham cracker crust together and pour into the crust. Cover and refrigerate until you can't stand it any longer and let the gluttony begin. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pieces but if you're a little cheesecake lush like I am this step will most certainly not be necessary ...
 ... just ask the little lush-in-training.

loooong weekend

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26 May 2012


I can't seem to find the good attitude I tucked away for holiday weekends like this when Simon works lots and lots of hours. So, if you don't like baditudes ... click onward and upward.

Yes, we're just sitting around chewing our (fun!) cud
like any other normal day.

I am teaching the kids how to give genuine (quality) glares from the window in the general direction of neighboring Bar-B-Ques that might look at all enjoyable. I let Julia have a teeny bit more than her usual 1/8 cup of 'pow-fo' (coffee, obvi) this morning. And Sebastian's ninja hand control is making serious progress as I found not one but two Cheerios secretly tucked into my bra long after he'd gone down for his 18 minute nap this afternoon. So ... I guess I'm basically homeschooling the kids in the Fine Arts this weekend. My next lesson plan will include complaining in Latin while cross stitching, "optimism is for the birds" onto pretty pillows. e-Back pats are welcome and appreciated.  

I'll leave you with this pictorial of their glare progress.
do you hear that clucking in the background?

That would be the approval of one proud mother hen.

Happy weekend, I guess.

7 Quick Takes

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25 May 2012

a good indicator that the laundry situation around here is dire.
(don't worry - it only took two parents and lots of curses to get Nike [size 3 months] off of his [size 24 months] person/arms)

1. I'm (obviously) not a fashion blogger but Kayla and Erica are very kindly letting me hop aboard their Open to Interpretation series in June. And there are going to be link parties so you can join the fun too. To read all the intricate 'tails click here and here.

2. Did you see the eclipse on Sunday? I didn't but Jessica did.

3. Your new favorite blog. Guarant.

4. Are you in the market for a good book that is not 50 shades of scando? Check it: Anne's recent list 
& the other Anne's Summer Reading Guide

5. Funniest gender reveal ever.

6. We made this last night and it was SO good (using canned chicken and ranch dressing because we are gross like that).

7. Suri is always SO wise.

Many, many thanks to Jen for hosting the Quakes, as always.

PS I added a few more items here.

PPS I feel like this reads as if I'm in a bad mood -- maybe I am ................ not! or I am.

(or not)

For Sale: shoes and clothes

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24 May 2012

I hope I don't insult you by assuming that you might be interested in former inhabitants of my closet. If I am, don't click here where you will find the goods (and bads).

Simon Says

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"I'm just summerizing the other four dollar swimming pool that you bought last summer."

About every other day when he says something that might warrant a PG-13 rating Simon instantly says, "do NOT put that on the blog."

As he walked into the bathroom with Julia at his heels the other night, Simon said, "while your little brain is developing you should probably go ahead and give me some privacy."

After lots of failed attempts to get a dinnertime-nap-happy Sebastian to bed too late at night, Simon said, "are you going to join Julia in the the ranks of life ruiners?!"

While I was taking pictures of the kids doing nothing (like always) outside in the driveway last night, Simon said, "the neighbors probably walk by and say, 'there are those weirdos with their kids and their camera - again.'"

While looking at Sebastian recently he told him, "don't worry buddy, you'll grow into your facial features."

**to achieve Julia's chic look -- layer one regular diaper under a pair of shorts and top off with a swim diaper -- bada boom.

Ring Around the Rosy

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23 May 2012

Hopefully Julia's short-term memory kicks into gear soon because I can tell you that her new favorite activity/addiction is fun for approximately one of the three involved parties.

fixer upper: t-shirt edition

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22 May 2012

I was in the mood to post something of substance today. Something of substance with very few photos that would undoubtedly touch the hearts of many. I think I probably hit the nail on the head with this super underwhelming alteration.

It might gross you out that I found this very worn t-shirt at Goodwill in the men's department. Or the men's section. It passed the sniff test as there was no lingering body odor and only faintly smelled of spicy cologne. Good enough for me.
It was size XL in case you missed my label. I thought it would be a lot bigger but I was happy to see that the neck wasn't huge or slidey and that it was probably one Thanksgiving meal away from fitting almost perfectly.

So here is what Julia and I did during the first half of Sebastian's nap before Julia snuck upstairs to wake him up by throwing a heavy object on his head (for! the! second! day! in! a! bleeping! row!)
1. folded the shirt in half lengthwise and cut off the hemmed part of the sleeves
2. cut out the chunk that I didn't want in order to make the sleeves shorter (not my own idea)
3. made Julia wear the unwanted chunk as a flattering headband
4. but seriously, throw the excess away so you don't accidentally reattach it to the shirt like an idiot

5. I hate pinning things and generally don't but I think this was an important step. I pinned the hemmed part of the sleeve back onto the shirt - right sides together. It was pretty painless and Julia only put one pin in her mouth during the process.
5a. not pictured - but I sewed the ends back onto the shirt -- taking the pins out in the process
6. I eyeballed how much smaller I wanted to make the shirt. Here is my shoddy tutorial. Here is a legit shirt slimming tutorial.
7. I cut off the excess material (in case you're blind)
8. Checked on Julia. I found her sulking about something. She was fine.

9. new imperfect cuff
10. totally naturally standing in the backyard like an idiot

And yes, that feeling you're experiencing right now is your heart being touched. Trust me.

I can't imagine that anything wasn't crystal clear but if you're confused, please let me know. Also -- please do this -- asap.


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21 May 2012


Today can be summed up in a long string of completely disjointed and not whiney sentences.

I think the kids woke up a combined number of 100 times last night (nothing a little unplugged baby monitor, 10 box fans, and lots of Ambien for alllll members of the fam won't fix tonight). During my run/walk this morning, a car actually honked at me to move over onto the sidewalk. I didn't, don't worry. When we returned home and I was recovering Julia fed Sebastian his own diaper fresh from the trash can and if his impressively strong latch was any indicator, he thought it tasted amazing.

While I was drying my hair after its weekly washing Julia put a brief moratorium on her 'must be within 2 feet -- preferably touching mom' rule, hiked up two flights of stairs (stopped in the kitchen to drink some generic Pam) with a turned on electric toothbrush. She made it all the way to Sebastian's sleeping face in his portacage where she apparently tried to 'bush his teef' but instead dropped the not very light toofbush on his face. I found the escape artist just in time to see Sebastian in a fit of justified rage that I hope to never ever encounter again.

I decided to pair a necklace with my clean hair which I'm fairly certain contributed two or three beads to Sebastian's current digestive tract. We'll find out in a week when he drops his weekly diaper bomb. Speaking and smelling of diaper bombs, I'm definitely certain Julia figured out a way to drop a seemingly invisible diaper bomb sans diaper in my closet at some point today.

Julia has a sudden and strong aversion to any and all shirts and only wants to wear shorts that could pass as immodest swimsuit bottoms. She also discovered the box of toys with a millllllllllllllion parts that I had hidden away deep in the dark recesses of the basement never to be found again. She promptly marched it outside to dump out and share with her pet ant hill that she keeps fat and happy with 78% of every meal that conveniently misses her mouth. Let me stress -- one milllllllion parts.

And to top it all off I was supposed to meet Simon for some hospital cafeteria fare at 1:00 but still hadn't heard from him at 1:30 because he was stuck in a loooooong surgery. Don't worry -- I didn't get mad at him -- I got mad at the situation.

But for once in my control freak of a life I decided to roll with all of the blessed fun.
I'm not sure why. Maybe because Julia started agreeably saying, "shoo" (sure) instead of her default blank stare in response to anything I ask her (whether "shoo" makes sense in the context or not is completely irrelevant). Or maybe because I didn't taste impending vomit for the first time ever on my not fun run today. Or maybe because there is a Butterfinger (king size) in the refrigerator c/o the hospital cafeteria that I'm totally going to eat before Simon gets home from work too many hours later than usual. Or maybe probably definitely it's because blogging royalty, Jen wrote theeee nicest post in the history of the internet about Camp Patton. I'm only a little bit worried that the blog is going to explode and die a happy death due to the insane glut of new traffic she sent over.

Julia, Sebastian, Simon, the ants, and my newfound strength to not faux-stress drink before noon ALL thank you.

Julia ... again.

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20 May 2012

you like her Dorothy Hamill haircut? I thought so.
Come on over and I'll give you the same, free of charge.

Since Simon is at work again and I've run out of high chairs to clean, cars to decrumb, internet to surf, and wrinkles to scrutinize I thought I'd give you an update on Julia's docile behavior.

Her obsession with the toilet grows weirder by the day. She used to just splash around, take a little drink, and put entire rolls of toilet paper into the toilet. But the other day she was calling from the throne telling me that she was, "suuuuuck!!!" (stuck - for any dumbos in the audience) so I begrudgingly put down my champagne and chocolate that I was enjoying on my chaise lounge and went to see what the emergency was. I found that she had wedged both of her bare feet deeeep into the toilet "hole" (?!).
New lows.
Every hour.

A few hours after that excitement died down we were in the car when I looked back to see her carefully taking apart a pen. She had stripped it all the way down and was enjoying sips of the good stuff: the very full vial of purple ink -- again, in the car that I was helplessly driving.

I do have to say that she has graduated to a multisyllabic pronunciation for Sebastian .. up from "bash" to "basher". He loves it, obviously. The other day I ran outside to throw some boxes in the recycling bin and when I returned 8 seconds later I found her trying to cut a sleeping basher out of his car seat "saps!!!" with the not dull knife I had used to break the boxes down. I have only me, myself, and Grace to blame for any future heart attacks and chunky grey highlights.

We did purchase a portacage for very mean 90 second time out punishments since grounding her and taking away leg shaving privileges wasn't doing the trick.  We are five dramatic time outs in, and she has already gotten really good at saying, "sigh!!!" (sorry).

So, I guess you could say that things are definitely looking up.

the world's largest swimming pool

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19 May 2012

1. generously undoing my 18 loving trips of lugging the blender pitcher full of water from the kitchen allllllllll the way outside to fill the monstrosity
2. Paddington Bear was careful to never ever break his frown for the entirety of his dip in the pool
3. matching bodies
4. unsolicited affection to apologize for unsolicited violence

Maybe I should've sprung for the six dollar pool instead of buying this four dollar wonder. Whatever. This activity combined with a six minute trip to the playground (crawling with helicopters spraying their young with SPF 180 and following their every blink and whine) this morning better guarantee that the kids will sleep until Simon returns home from work at sundown. Or at the very least (because I very unfortunately discovered that swim diapers are only good at pretending to absorb urine -- not any other bodily product -- natural disaster)  -- it will launch me into the running for Mother of the Millennium ... and beyond.

7 Quick Takes: Couch to 5K

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18 May 2012

No, I haven't finished the stupid program. I'm just about to start week six of nine million and all I have to show for my toil is a much higher daily caloric intake than (the already high intake) before starting the stupid program.

 For once I totally agree with your carefully considered sentiment, Julia.

Anyway, this is how I do.

1. Basically I just want to get in decent enough shape to simply start my (brillllliant) man Hal's Spring training program without keeling over and dying. If you look at the novice schedule -- this is a truly pathetic goal.

2. Hal actually deserves an entire take. If you are considering running a race of any distance, use his training schedules. Shoot for the marathon moon. I promise, it really is magic.

3. Back to ugly reality -- if you are smart and unfamiliar with Couch to 5K's program -- basically you just walk, run, walk, repeat for allotted amounts of minutes and as the weeks drag on, the walking decreases and the running increases. Its all very fun, as you can imagine.

4. I'm here to give you permission to also implement a "stop" button on your trek. Stop, put your head between your ankles and gasp for breath after running for 2 whole minutes.  You do what you have to do to survive. I do it and I would only consider myself a minor failure. Very minor.

5. If you happen to run on a hot and humid trash day and get stuck behind the trash truck and have to default to purely mouth breathing, you get bonus couch points. Your recovery shake may include Butterfinger bits and flecks of a gold medal. You deserve it.

6a. If a human is walking a dog or dogs or just themselves or is walking with a fellow human and they refuse to yield to you who is clearly a chariot on serious fire and you are forced to awkwardly lift shift yourself and your young into the dangerous street, definitely give them your best glare. If you can muster a mutter, "I will blog about you -- threat? no promise!", that will definitely show them. They'll learn.

6b. If a human driving a car refuses to yield to (very important) you who is clearly a chariot on serious fire and won't let you cross the street without breaking your fast stride from the comfort of their bucket seat throne, definitely give them your best glare. If you can muster a mutter, "I will blog about you -- threat? no, promise!", that will definitely show them. They'll learn.

7. If you happen to run while pushing two lazies, make sure to sneak out for a strollerless run one afternoon while they are safely and lazily napping. You'll feel like the non-flippered version of Michael Phelps on land. I promise.

For about 1,768 more exciting takes of the quick variety, go see Jen. You'll be glad you did. 


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17 May 2012

Can you dig deep into the archives of your razor sharp memory and remember my unfortunate culotte purchase?

I know you can.

After finally folding the Kilimanjaro of all Kilimanjaros of cold laundry this morning, I found and remembered it too. I carried the kids downstairs, turned a blind eye as they played with forbidden treasures (toilet water and toilet paper) and transformed the wannabe skort into a skirt.
And then I put it on slightly crooked and took a photo with the sun hitting the front seam just right so that you can't exactly see it screaming, "I used to be ginormous shorts!!!"

And then I valiantly rescued Sebastian from Julia who was so smartly using a cup to very efficiently transfer the water over onto his unamused and nearly drowned face.

Simon Says

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16 May 2012

Simon said, "you take way too many pictures."

After listening to his hypochondriac wife complain that she thought she had a fever, Simon said, "maybe you're teething."

While watching me and Julia play nice then mean then nice again Simon proclaimed, "Grace and Julia, the ultimate frenemies!!!"

After observing Julia and Sebastian's morning wake up behavior this weekend, Simon said, "if the kids were pets, Sebastian would be a cuddly puppy and Julia would be a very temperamental cat."

Due to a little tiny communication hiccup over what Sebastian was supposed to be wearing, Simon dressed Sebastian in a plaid short sleeve shorts outfit onesie thing over a long sleeve onesie. Simon took one look at the finished and dressed baby product and said, "1990 called from Portland and wants its outfit back."

While watching wobbly hands Julia try to hand feed wobbly head Sebastian pieces of her dinner, Simon said, "its like watching a couple of drunks."

While I was taking

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these (e-x-c-i-t-i-n-g) pictures . . .
Simon asked if I was going to title them, "Children of the Corn?"


And yes, the child with one sliver of a tooth easily trumps the child with a mouthful of whole teeth in the cob gnawing department.

crawling pants

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15 May 2012

(not to be confused with pants that crawl -- but those would definitely destroy this post in a competition for most interesting)
You know life is moving at a fast and furious clip when I dedicate an entire post to crawling pants. Sebastian is minutes? days? weeks? months? away from crawling. Julia waited until she was a mature 9-month-old to help me out in the mobile department and maybe he'll follow suit. For now he just does his planks and then transitions down to his hands and knees for long periods of time. Since the main floor of our abode is hard wood I (kindly!) lay out a quilt for him but he can't slither off that soft thing fast enough. Julia obviously survived just fine without blanket rug coddling but I was in a generous mood this morning and decided to fashion some crawl-friendly pants for his majesty.

I took a masculine sparkly polka-dotted pair of Julia's old leggings that she often used to do her floor cleaning chores. I bought some suede-like material a long time ago but have never used it so I cut out two mini potato shaped patches and tried to sew them on with my temperamental machine. The pants were too small to fit around the machine -- (are you still reading? mmm hmmm) -- so I had to go the labor of love route: thread and needle and my two bare hands. I treated myself to a viewing of some quality programming and went to town.
 as always, I'm confident that you're blown away.

And now that his sensitive little knees are happily and unnecessarily protected I'm sure he'll regress from almost mobile right back to immobile and mr. dependent . . .
. . . which is just fine, I suppose.


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14 May 2012

Julia has been killing me these past few days.

She has majorly upped her crazy antics ante which is both impressive and frustrating and frustrating and frustrating. I've been a mom for a whopping 19.5 months -- how am I still a mere novice? (that was sarcasm  -- I'm aware I still have some serious years before I hit veteran ranking) It's like the floodgates of mess/danger/accident prone opened and she was the sole recipient of the spillage.

First it was annoying and minor incidents like makeup thrown in the toilet - twice. Then the huge bag of rice that she opened and dumped into the floor vent. Then I believe it was chewed up and spit back out peanuts in every crevice of the couch. Then she found and devoured a whole tube of lipstick. Then she learned how to make a toilet water and toilet paper mache (why is Blogger telling me that "mache" isn't a word?) mask for her hair and Sebastian's mouth. Then she covered the scale, the floor, her tongue, the dining room table and her eyelids with artistic thick, black, and permanent marker scribblings. Then she managed to get on the OTHER side of the professional patio chair barricade blocking the steps leading down to the very scary and probably lethal brick landing.

I think I hit the point of pure and unadulterated exasperation when she hid my car/house keys which I eventually found two days later under the deck, right before I succumbed to a potentially fatal cabin fever.

Then I caught her doing something that prompted an immediate absolution from her loooooong list of venials. She better thank the patron of comedy and maternal mercy that I just so happened to turn the corner into the living room in time to see her giving Sebastian a very prolonged and inapprop kiss on the lips that would probably make Allie Hamilton and Noah Calhoun blush. I will never forget the stunned look on the usually unfazed Sebastian's slobber covered face as Julia casually waltzed away as if nothing had happened.
Still, not cute.

And yes, of course I gave Julia the old "kisses like that are reserved for husbands and no, you cannot marry your brother" talk which she seemed to totally understand and take very well after a series of questions.

*I meant to drop this post last week but then someone bit into a raw egg and I was suddenly very busy teaching the smarty pants how to wash her mouth out with soap. 

the perfect visit

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Simon's parents and brother, Grace's Godparents and Godbrother, and Julia and Sebastian's grandparents and Uncle Paul (you follow? they wear many hats) kindly made the trek to see us this past weekend.  Julia was in heaven as she learned all about basketball ("kick" -- logical), was read her entire library of wildly exciting board books by patient grandparents, and is still walking around aimlessly asking for "paw?!" over and over and over again -- as she tends to do do do do do do.  Sebastian was thrilled with the fresh sets of willing feeder hands as he cannot stand when he misses one of his million daily meals of puree. Simon was happy to have someone with a similar baller skillset because I think he's tired of being schooled by his sporty spice wife. I was so grateful to the grandparental babysitters who generously watched the hardwood floor rats while Simon and I escaped for an afternoon to buy makeup and eat food. I'll let you guess who picked which fun activity.

1. Julia falls for the 56th time
2. baw with paw
3. patriotic
4. flattering all around
5. book! book! book! book! book! book!
6. Sebastian keeps complaining that he gained 5 pounds this weekend
7. "Papa!" and "Papa!"

I'm very hopeful that they return soon. In fact, tomorrow would be perfect. Thanks.

Simon Types

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13 May 2012

If you're coming here for the usual dose of daily life with a healthy dash of humor from Grace, I am sorry to disappoint.  Instead of Grace's "Simon Says" posts which usually feature equal parts hyperbole and hyperbole, this one is the real deal.  (For those of you who haven't gotten your first cup of coffee in: Grace isn't writing the post, I (Simon) am)

Grace is taking the day off today as it is Mother's Day and she qualifies (x2) and needs the break (x9209318312830129).   So I figured I'd sneak here on blogger and write her a little Mother's Day post which I'm hoping qualifies as a good present (comment and say yes!  send to your friends and get them to follow! like on facebook!  tweet it: #bestpresentinhistoryofworldshootijustusedmyonehundredandfortycharacters!).  If it doesn't, I'm going to be in the doghouse like I was on Valentine's day.

Sorry to be long winded.  The real reason I'm here is to praise the very best mom on the planet.  No matter what she chronicles on these pages, Grace is an amazing example day in and day out of what it means to be a good parent.  Like most couples, on our wedding day we pledged to be by each others sides through good times and bad.  I don't want to even begin to imply that having two healthy little kids is the worse side of "for better or worse", but that 3am vomit-scream fest is one time when your realize that you've transitioned from the happy go-lucky newlywed stage to wowstuffjustgotreal.

It seems in life it's the challenges that show us the character ourselves and those around us, and getting to know Grace as a mom, especially over the last year, is definitely one of those times.  Between my long hours and the constant needs/demands from the little Pattons, Grace often has little time left for herself.  Instead of growing resentful or bitter, she manages to have this unending source of patience and self-sacrificing love.  When one thinks about what true love is and how the greatest Example of this love lived and died, it transforms life full of sleepless nights, diaper changes, and lack of adult interaction into a perfect opportunity to show love as He did; which is exactly what Grace does on a daily basis.

Julia and Sebastian, if you're reading this I hope you realize your mom truly loves you and how lucky you are.  I know I do.  Grace, if you're reading this, sorry I hacked into your blogger, and most importantly: Happy Mother's Day.  I love you.

full-time sitter

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12 May 2012

read all about how I fired her (for now) right here.

7 Quick Takes: Linkage (again)

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11 May 2012

Here's the long list of e-luckies I've been enjoying from the comfort and ease of the www ...

Firstly ... too important to number ... did you see that Cari had a beautiful baby boyorgirl? Click here to see and congratulate like a nice creeper.

1. I'm sure you've seen the Time Magazine cover that has the internet buzzzzzing. Kate wrote a great post on the controversial photo. (Thank you to Colleen for pointing me in the smart direction!)

2. Speaking of Kate, this Kate (same name, different person) wrote a hilarious post about a couple of exchanges with some of her college students. A must read. Must.

3. Blogger extraordinaire Mary wrote a sweet and relatable post about blog friendships.

4. Now that Meggie is a mom, she is ditching her heels and looking for more practical but still stylish footwear. She found some diamonds in the comfort sandal roughage.
4b. Thoughts on Saltwater sandals ... I am so tempted to follow the trendy leader.

5. Speaking of zapatos, I'm in love with Merrick's wedges and her outfit and all of her clothes and I'll stop here. No here. 

6. Jenny never doesn't hit the nail squarely on the head with her incredible writing. I didn't think she could trump her previous typings but this post might be one of my favorites yet.

7. Christine wrote a helpful post on getting snack and catnap prone babies on a schedule. Something I wish I'd read when both needlet 1 and needlet 2 were newborns.

Hallie is hosting the quakes today and please keep Jen and her community in your prayers.


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