Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Eighteen months! Plus some random bits.

Fiona! She's 18 months. She's giving me a run for my money. It's a good thing she's so darned cute...

Lately, she has been protesting both nap and bedtime. I can get her to nap every other day, although she only napped once while we were at the in-laws for 4 days. So we're running on a sleep deficit, which makes her a little less easy-going and much more prone to provoke Adrian. Today she actually pulled his hair. (Granted, he was the instigator, but hair pulling is verboten) And the thing about protesting sleep that gets me is that the screamy crying fit only happens when I put her to bed. Aaron puts her down--silence. Nana puts her down--silence. I put her down, you can count on 15-45 minutes of hysteria. It's like I won the crappy lottery. And I thought maybe it was just an age thing, so I went back and looked at what I had to say about Adrian at 18 months. It seems that while the general tantrums are the same, this sleepless crap is all Fiona Leigh.

In other news, Adrian and I mixed up a big batch of bread dough from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes A Day--and are anticipating fresh bread for breakfast! YUUUUUM! If only I had some brie cheese to smear on it with my marmalade. (I harbor a love for marmalade that borders on the pathological)

At some point I'll post about this years' holiday extravaganza and Adrian's love of technology.

And below: photographic evidence of my parents' visit! It's a very rare photo because in it my Mom is smiling! Usually she wears a "don't point that thing at me" expression.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Two thoughts

1. The only problem with leftover Chinese food is that when it's gone your fridge still smells like eggrolls.

2. Snow! And more snow! I drove the kids 3 blocks over to a friends house to play and it was a slip-slidey adventure. Apparently if school is not in session our street is not a plow-priority. I need a plastic sled that the kids can sit in and then I can haul them snow-dog style.

Friday, December 19, 2008


We had an ice storm last night. As a result, our front steps were buried under ice that fell off the awning. When I stepped out the front door to put Adrian on the bus, I was expecting ice steps. I was not expecting an icy hill. I turned around to tell Adrian to watch for the ice and fell. Fell, then slid down the icy hill to where the sidewalk would have been if it wasn't covered with ice. Thankfully, I landed on my butt and not anything breakable. Somehow I managed the whole thing without dropping Adrian's backpack or the cookies for the neighbors--who witnessed it all. Sicilians on ice! Coming to a slippery slope near you!
Sadly, now my butt hurts.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A rebuttal, with a side order of snark.

The question: So what did you cook that was so objectionable to a 4 year old that he would rather starve himself than eat it?

The answer: Tamale pie. Consisting of leftover taco meat (which he ate earlier), black beans (oh, how i love them), corn (oh, how fiona loves it), and pureed tomatoes. Topped with cornbread topped with monterey jack cheese.

I know, I am the most evil and unfeeling mother this side of the Mississippi.

Next: How about this - if you want him to fatten up, give him fattening foods that he will eat.

The answer: I am not running a restaurant. I cook one type of food for each meal. If I give Adrian "fattening foods" then we will all be eating "fattening foods". And the list of "fattening foods" that Adrian eats is as follows:
Fried chicken, no skin.
French fries.
Corn dogs.
That's it. It reads like a manual to heart attack, childhood obesity, or type 2 diabetes. We'll pass on that, thanks.

Next:Don't make this a contest of wills with a four year old.

The answer: I am not having a battle of wills. I always put one thing on his plate I KNOW he will eat. If he decides to be pigheaded about the whole plate, I am not breaking out my short-order chef's hat and popping back into the kitchen. Dinner is always a difficult time, as it happens at the end of the day when he is worn out but not yet ready for bed. The last time I made pancakes for breakfast he complained that they weren't circley enough. Pancakes. He complained about a food you eat with syrup.

Clearly the problem is not me.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Well, it's finally happened. I've talked so much, and at such length that I've lost my voice. (Doom!) How am I supposed to yell at the kids now? (kidding!)

My parents were here for too short a visit and we were tremendously busy. I like to cram as much as possible into every day because who knows when they'll be back? Last Friday we went down to the Art Institute to see the tapestry exhibit and wow. It was really breathtaking and slightly overwhelming--as I find most major art exhibitions to be. At some point your brain reaches overload and your senses just quit. It was amazing to see what could be accomplished with what ammounted to bits of colored string.

Adrian and Fiona were of course lovely and charming with their grandparents. They have since made up for their prolonged good behavior. For example, last night Adrian decided he didn't want to eat what I had cooked, so he spent 15 minutes sitting at the table (with his full plate in front of him) crying and yelling "But I'm so hungry!". Meanwhile, Fiona is looking at me asking "Adrian, owies?" which is what she asks every time he pitches a fit. In her mind I'm sure she thinks her brother is the most injury-prone person to walk the planet.

For her own little self, Fiona is on a nap imbargo. Deeeelightful. Monday she had her 18 month check up and she's only 9 pounds lighter than Adrian. She really IS going to dress him like a baby doll if he doesn't start putting on some weight soon.

And now there are suspicious noises coming from the kitchen.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Things I've learned

1. You can be around and care for ill children for 4 weeks before your immune system gives up and you want to find a hole to crawl into for a while.
a. The size of the hole will be in direct proportion to the number of things on your to-do list
b. The severity of the illness is directly related to the probability of help (if help is available, you will be miserable but not at death's door. if there is no help, it's best to call your loved ones and bid them adieu)

2. If you should ever be evicted because of a monkey, you should definitely have someone in your life who will let you sleep on their couch while you look for a new place to live.

3. I can no longer suspend my disbelief for children's films. It is a sad day--I can't stop myself from questioning the legal implications of removing a 40-foot idol from the heartlands of Africa for the purpose of the monetary gain of a museum in New York City. (Anyone who can tell me which film this is will get a cool and completely frivolous prize)

My mother is coming to visit. Thus, in the grand Chicago tradition the weather will be crappy while she is here. Wondering why Wednesday through Sunday will be cold enough to turn children to child-sicles? It's because the Weather Commission (a superhero-like force what controls the weather) has decided that every time my mom visits, they will punish us all with unseasonable weather. Which is totally lame, because my mom is awesome. Double lame because my dad is coming too and we were going to try to convince them to up and move to Chicago--third largest city in the U.S., resplendant with architectural beauty, and also I am here (which should be reason enough, right?)

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Gobble gobble!

For Thanksgiving, we went to Rick and Elaine's house. (Aaron's aunt & uncle) They host a great many Puetz family get-togethers, partially because of their central location and partially because their house is big enough to hold all of us--I think there were 23 at Thanksgiving this year. My brother Jono was along for the visit, which was a treat--he's now a carded starving artist and lives all the way in Connecticut so we don't see him much. Aaron has promised him an Xbox 360 if he moves to Chicago, and I wholeheartedly endorse this bribe. It's part of my grand plan to convince everyone I know and love to move closer to me. Or as I like to think of it: coooooome toooo Chicaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaago.
At any rate, Thanksgiving was good fun. I told Aaron before we left that he was going to be the sober, responsible one for the day--good thing too, as cocktail hour started at one and went through dinner. After Thanksgiving, we piled back into the car, Aaron drove us home and the next day we put Jono on the plane back to Connecticut. Not that we were lonely-- we had Aaron's parents and sister with us Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I have to say that having them around makes me see the wisdom in multi-generational households. Soooo much can be accomplished when there are extra hands and extra eyes for watching babies. And next week my parents will be in for a few days!

Thanksgiving...illustrated back to front.
Here is Adrian and Cousin Shana taking a break from Nerf guns--I don't know about you but I see the resemblance between the two of them.

Here is my brother Jono, myself and Miss Fiona Leigh...as well as Grandpa Dick (Puetz family patriarch) to the right, and Erica (Aaron's sister) to the left.
Back at Casa Fleck-arlo, we were entertained by the musical stylings of Jono and Bluesman AD on harmonica.

Adrian really got into playing the harmonica. He loves music--listening to it, trying new instruments. He told me the other day that he wants to learn to play the violin (in addition to the piano, guitar, drums, and tuba) . Perhaps watching hours of Mary Poppins as a wee one really did have an effect on him.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

When it's bad...

Today was one of those rare days when I wondered if I could join the foreign legion. It was also one of those days that made me realize why some animals eat their young.
Adrian was up too late last night and too early this morning, Fiona is cutting teeth and on a nap embargo. They were alternately trying to get under the other's skin and whining and crying at me.
There was a moment when I considered calling my childless friends and telling them "don't do it! don't fall for it! once they're here there's no turning back! run! run while you still can!"

And today was the first day that Adrian called me a "mean mommy". I expected it would come up eventually. What I did not expect was that it would happen in defense of his sister. So that was a pleasant surprise...or maybe just nice wrapping around a pile of crap. Hard to tell, really.

Whaaaaat else? (Welcome to the non sequitur part of this evening's program)
The dodge dealership down the street is offering a buy one, get one for $1 deal.
My brother comes to visit Monday--woot!
I like dogs. Specifically the Italian Spinoni. We may get one...maybe we can trade the kids for a dog.
Fiona's new favorite word: No! (She's not even 18 months yet and she's got enough attitude for a whole room of eighth grade girls) I can only hope her new enthusiasm for this word is because she doesn't feel good and not because she's really turning into a disagreeable toad. Everything is a lost cause when matched with her other favorite word: Mine!

And I'm tired, so now I'm going to bury myself beneath many blankets and hope against hope tomorrow is better.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


So, Aaron is home from his 5 days of training in Ft. Smith Arkansas and the children are on him like cockleburrs. Which allows me to sit quietly in the corner and re-read a book that used to be a favorite of mine. The reason I had brought this book up from it's basement abode is that I got a call from a girlfriend looking for the name of a particular image and I knew it was in there somewhere, and wasn't quite sure where I have stashed my art history books tho it's probably in there too.
That was a long winded way of telling you that in the book there is a theory that women (specifically. sorry, boys) are more attuned to the natural cycles* and thus more attuned to a cosmic sense of time as opposed to a linear sense of time--as we are now familiar with it. Which leads me to this conclusion:

I am never late, I am merely moving according to cosmic time.

*This attunement, the author declares, is due to the fact that the menstrual cycle is 28 days and the lunar cycle is 28 days, and the period of gestation for a fetus is actually 10 lunar months (280 days or 40 weeks). Making women more in tune with the moon than with, say, the timetables at the train station. (I do realize that nobody is in tune with train station timetables except perhaps the rats and roaches that have lived their brief lives beneath the rumbling rails)

I really do need to get out more.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The busy and the rediculous

Adrian is happy when he's up to his elbows in crafts. So far this week, we've written a letter to Santa and made Thanksgiving wreaths. We've also been assembling paper turkeys to take to our Thanksgiving hostess. And Fiona...scroll down for her latest and greatest.
Taadah! She can put on Adrian's shoes (this is her smile for the camera) and...we have the return of Buckethead. Buckethead 2.1 if you will. Fiona is opposed to actual hats, but she's down with wearing not-hat things on her head and declaring it "hat!". This led to a giant hissy fit from Adrian, who all of a sudden is mr. precise: if it's not a hat you can't call it one. Oh! Four is Fussy! Three is Terrible! and Two is Trying! I can only hope that Five will be Fabulous--or that I don't run out of Merlot. Cheers!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Hey all! I have recovered (mostly) from the bone-rattling cough of 2008--and compared to the strep throat of '07 it was nothing. Upon recovery, I discovered that Fiona's hair had grown over her eyes in the manner of that sheepdog from those Bugs Bunny cartoons. I didn't want to cut all her hair because the back does this really awesome curly thing, so I determined the solution to be: bangs! Now she looks like a toddler and not so much like a warner brothers cartoon character.
Also it should be duly noted that she is a daddy's girl if ever there was one. Last night for dinner we had roast chicken and she and Aaron stood over it and picked the carcass clean. She was pretty thrilled with the lack of eating utensils and the general caveman aspect of eating meat directly off the bones. Witness:

Saturday, November 01, 2008

How do?

hello, and don't mind the phlegm!

Adrian and I seem to have acquired the cold that will not die. I've got the chest-congested horrible hacking cough, and he's got the river of snot flowing from his nose. We could have gone as Pestilence for Halloween, but I don't think the neighbors would've appreciated it much.

Fion and Aaron are untouched by the germy germs. It seems unfair really, that the two people who care least about their health should be unscathed. Fiona eats things off the ground, for crying out loud! Things like dirt!

Halloween was good. In the spirit of things, Fiona would respond to the trick or treaters chorus with "ZoeyandElmo!" Adrian got to trick or treat AND hand out candy AND sit by the firepit. He capped the night off by sitting the wrong way in his chair and falling over into a pile of sticks. Sticks that were NOT on fire, to clarify.
Speaking of fire--hey wow. There was a giant fire in Tinley last night. It was about 3 blocks from us, on the other side of the train station--5 engines were sent to put it out and there were 2 explosions. And I can't find any information about it on any of the local newspaper websites. What's the deal with that? I surely can't be considered the source of breaking news here.
And now I am going to go to bed. Maybe I can sleep this cough away...
Pass the nyquil, wouldja?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Guess who's FOUR!

Why, The Amazing Adrian, of course. And as an early birthday present, Jack Frost brought some snow.

And for your viewing pleasure, here is Fiona Leigh. It's almost time to eat so all is right in her world.

Monday, October 20, 2008

We need

I have decided that we need some kind of climby-thing for the backyard. Something that will keep Adrian from climbing the exterior of the steps and all over the living room furniture.

This looks promising, but I don't know that I'm ready to drop $250. Although, if he tears apart my couch I'll be spending more on a new couch....

maybe I'll just sew some weights into the cuffs of his pants.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Snicklefritz and more

Hello Internets!

I have not been posting as I have been living. And cleaning up vomit (not my own) and silently cursing Aaron's employers.

Lets start with the vomit, shall we? (Note to self--if ever greeted this way in a restaurant: run!) Adrian has a sensitive disposition. About everything. I'm fairly certain he was born this way and that I did not turn him into the kind of kid who has a meltdown over trying new foods, but back to the topic at hand....He has a fear of new foods and a stubborn streak that would impress a mule. As a result I'm always trying to find foods that are similar to foods he will eat in order to gently widen his gastronomic repetoire. Well, last week I overdid it. ANd it took me a full 4 nights of vomit to narrow down the offending culprits to either tree nuts or milk. So we're back to a milkless, tree nut free diet. He has his 4 year old check up in November and I think I'm going to go ahead and request an allergy test so I don't have to play vomit-cleaner on a regular basis.

And the silent cursing is two-fold. Fold one: sending Aaron out of town for 5 days for a training seminar based off of the Army's 27 catagories of good leadership. Hullo you morons! Aaron was in the Army. He was an officer. he is overly familiar with said 27 catagories. And fold two: He gets home and surprise and congrats! We're changing your schedule 180degrees! You were on night shift, now you are on days! And those days that used to be your days off will be the days you work! And you had vacation? Well, I just don't know about that....
I hate that they treat him like a doormat.
Don't they know that's my job?
The computer is low on battery power, so no spellcheck for you!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


So dear friends, the time is upon us again when Aaron's wacky schedule gets even wackier. As a result, the kids are staging a sleep boycott. Adrian was up last night at 11, 1, 5, and 6. Fiona was up at 3 and 4.

This is how kids make you stupid. It's like...something terrible. With no sleep.


Monday, September 22, 2008

You like pictures?

The kids hanging out in the garage. It's where they sleep. In a kennel. I kid! I kid! Adrian actually has the biggest bedroom in the house, but those are photos for another day.

This is Adrian in the living room, talking on the phone to Granma. (It's like he's 13 already)

Here is Fiona, practicing for Mardi Gras.

Here is Fiona, devouring an apple. She eats the whole thing: stem, core, seeds. She and Cookie Monster could go head-to-head in an eating contest.

And lastly, Adrian and Fiona relaxing while watching a movie this morning. Awwww.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

the mystery of moving...

Now I know I threw A LOT of stuff out while packing, but I know that I didn't throw out 3 USB cords.
How can it be that 3 USB cords can vanish in a 4 mile move? So I am shopping for a new USB cord so I can upload all the photos I have to show you! Photos of the kids, photos of the house--many pictures to come!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Crazy, you say?

I am. Always have been a little. But I believe that the ultimate testament to my crazy is as follows:
Come Thursday, I will have 6 musicians camping in my basement for 2 nights.
(Providing that the van isn't too broken and the venue they are supposed to play isn't underwater.)
So I have been mopping the basement (stupid effing hurricane) with Pinesol. Repeatedly. So much so that there is a faint piney afterscent that follows me wheree're I go.
And! as if that's not enough--I have volunteered to find them a new venue should their scheduled venue be rained out. Do I actually know anyone in a position to book a show at a venue? No.
But I know people who may know people!
And I can be very persuasive.
Persuasive like a steamroller.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

How's your weather?

too many...so much...rain.
flooded basement.
much mopping.
f--- you, hurricane ike. f-you in your f-ing eye.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Not hiding!


I am not hiding-- I promise. I'm just busy and self-absorbed at the moment.
I was doing some crazy running around to get Adrian enrolled in the preschool provided by the school district. (yipee!) His new daily agenda: make mom crazy. And I'd have to say that he goes above and beyond.

Fiona is rapidly expanding her vocabularly. Her two favorite words: Emmie! and Casey! Which would be the names of the dogs on either side of us.

As for me, I have been spending hours in my studio! I love having my own space again. I love not having to clean up other people's messes before I can start my work. And I have scoped out 4 different venues to try and sell my work.

And once I find the USB cord I'll upload some photos.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Why I love this crazy milennium

As I sit here typing to you and drinking my frosty cold limoncello, a robot is doing my vacuuming. And I'm not talking about Aaron, my friends. Oh no. We have a lovely delightful and wondrous roomba from irobot. And i love him.
Another thing that's great about this technology age? I am wireless! I could be typing to you from the can! I'm not, but if the need arose I totally could.
Also theres this nifty internets thing--it's the best way to procrastinate EVER. Read a blog, click a link, and 3 hours later you know everything you never wanted to know about the life cycle of an earwig. (ew)
And did I mention digital cable? It's the best babysitter ever. I mean, I love that sprout channel. It's the best way to keep Adrian from bellowing my name as I'm trying to change a filthy diaper or put Fiona down for a nap. And I can watch MadMen on demand! I haven't yet, but I'm so going to.
Speaking of procrastination, I really need to go shower. But first, I should look and see if the weather tomorrow is going to be weather--like, because you just never know.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Funny thing...

Those of you who know me in real life know that I have multiple email addresses. One of these addresses requires frequent changes to my password to protect my safety yadda yadda yadda. At first I simply rotated through other passwords, but this account also has a thing where you can't doubleback until you've gone through a dozen original passwords. At our old house I had the computer remember the password for me and sign in for me and defeat the whole purpose of the crazy password change game. But... but this is the new house. With the new IP address. And the new computer, which doesn't even know how to get to the old email--I actually have to type the address into the browser.
And I don't remember the latest password. I have tried at least 6--one new one each day and I am at a loss. And I didn't write it down. Sure I could call the helpdesk and have them reset my password, but by the time I get the chance to sit at the computer they have stopped answering the phone. So?
Basically I've done the online equivilent of locking myself out of the house.
I'm sure that sometime in the next few days I'll get the chance to make that phone call but in the meantime just email me at my gmail address, ok?

Sunday, August 17, 2008


Hello beloved readers!
We are mostly in our new home. Every day we unpack one room, the next day we wonder should that really go there? And then we arrange, rearrange, and arrange again. The good news? We love our house--we love our neighbors--and the kids rooms are unpacked. We have gone wireless!
The bad news? The kids have gone to crazytown.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

moving day

hullo dear readers!
yesterday aaron and i bought a house. yipee!
today is moving day.
moving day--bane of my existence.
here's a transcript for your viewing pleasure:
me: what is this shit? where did this come from? how did we amass all this shit? where am i supposed to put all this shit? should i really be moving boxes that have been unopened for 3 years or more?
aaron: i dunno.
me: razzin frazzin flibbity gibbet! (twitchy eye)

so...i'll be a little busy and a lot offline for the next 5 or so days.
if you need me, you can always ring me on the telephone.

back to the doom of packing.

Friday, July 25, 2008

So...what's new with you?

My dad came to visit. He and I and AD went to Navy Pier to visit with his beloved Pride Of Baltimore II. He's done 2 or 3 sails on this ship, and plans to do more. If my dad won the lottery he'd more than likely quit his day job and sail the seas.

Coming up, I'll get to visit with some friends that I haven't seen in a while: Kathleen and Fuz. A good time will be had by all, and I do mean all b/c Aaron is working so I have to bring the brood along.

And I have been going into the city once a week to meet with some friends that I met during the class I took at the SAIC.

And the biggest news: we are in the process of buying a house. A WHOLE HOUSE. We're in the part of that process where we have to wait...and wait. And get ants in our pants. Which brings me round to my least favorite activity: packing boxes!
I have found myself procrastinating by any means possible...including a renewed interest in dental hygiene. Ooh! Dental Floss!
So that's me.
Your turn!

Monday, July 07, 2008

And when he came home...

Adrian went for a week-long holiday at Nana and Papa's house. He went to the air show, the zoo, to see a movie, to play mini-golf...they wore him out with all the going and doing. And when he came home he was like a brand-new kid. Gone are the temper tantrums, the snarky comments, and being mean for the sake of meanness. My mom tells me that it goes in six month cycles, and I'm beginning to wonder if it has to do with being cooped in the house during the long and unpleasant winter months.
At any rate, he has been delightful for the past 2 weeks and I'm loving it.

In Fiona news: Chocolate pudding is good.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Egads! Fiona Leigh is 1!

And quite frankly, she's pretty stoked about it. You would be too, if turning one meant a party and cake!
Here she's rocking some sweet shades on her way to the birthday festivities.

And then there was cake...

Which received a passing grade, and made it to the level of "so good I'll smear it into my hair"

Hey, it's my party--I'll wear cake if I want to. Back off!

Ahhh, Fiona Leigh.
At the age of one you are cheerful, inquisitive, and a little sassy. You have a goofy sense of humor--in this way you and your brother are very much alike. But there are so many ways in which you stand apart. You are so gentle with the cats and other babies, and if you really like someone (or something) you'll give it a kiss. At your birthday party you were so enamored of your snack of cracker and cheese that it received a kiss. You are not as interested in the water as your brother is, you much prefer to dig in the dirt or pull up the flowers. You love to sit and look at books, or bounce around to music.
I love that you don't take any crap from your brother--keep your ground! He needs to know that he can't push you around. I love that you love to eat. We've only found a few things that you aren't interested in consuming--and you'll put anything from the floor into your mouth. I have lost count of the number of googly eyes you've tried to consume.
Your vocabulary is growing every day, but you seem to reserve your talking for the family. I don't know if it's shyness or slyness, but you won't talk to just anyone.
You are a joy every day, and I love you.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Congratulate me!

Welcome to post 401!

I'd love to have lots of pithy things to say about posting 400 times in 4 years, but the long hard truth is: having babies makes you tired. Being tired makes you kind of dumb.

In other news, I took some classes at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and did a little blogging about it here. It made me think that I really would've kicked ass at Art School, if I hadn't been talked out of going. It also made me realize that I'm going to have to wait another 6 months to a year before I get back into a heavy art work schedule again.

Adrian is making me crazy--as only little boys can! This morning I had to tell him: don't eat your boogers, eat your breakfast.
Also, he has become exceedingly anxious about damn near everything and I find it really awful. Like for pete's sake kid, when I am in the bathroom I have no intention of climbing out the window to freedom. I don't need an escort. Does he heed these sage and sensible words? No. Instead I have had to explain to him what a period is and why boys don't get them. Although I am far more comfortable with that than I am with the opposite end of life. And don't think we've escaped the questions about death, either. OH NO. In fact he is quite fascinated by the whole thing and asks relentless questions about the expiration of life. Thank gods we haven't gotten to the metaphysics of death yet because that is a multi-cultural, multi-religious can of worms that I am not sure how to approach.
And in addition to his fascination with death, we have a fascination with superheroes! And bad guys! And how bad guys can be beat up by super heroes! And how quite possibly, the answer to all of life's disappointments is the beating up of the "bad guy" of the moment! Enter in threats of violence coupled with actual brute force. There's been manyMANYmany time outs for hitting, kicking, pushing, punching, and throwing directed at people. Frequently at Fiona Leigh, because in Adrian's rosy view of the world, life was better before she got here. I will give her credit though--she has no qualms about hitting him square in the face when he starts the melee.

As for my part, I remember being angry enough to hit my younger sibling, but I know it wasn't a daily, hourly occurrence. I also remember being really anxious about the monsters in my closet who were out to steal my opposable thumbs--but that was when I was 5. So maybe the whole furious/anxious Adrian is just genetic code, which means he should grow out of it. In the meantime, his butt will wear a groove into the time out spot and I will count the gray hairs as they arrive.
So far, we're up to 3.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008


This is Fiona's impression of the Fonz.
There's something about that facial expression that reminds me of my mom's sister Jan. I don't know exactly what it is, but for those of you who know her--do you see it too?

So here's a bit of a stunner: Fiona Leigh will be ONE YEAR OLD in FIVE WEEKS.
Where did 2007 go? What do you mean it's 2008?
Did anybody else loose 2003?

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Techno crazed

As I type this I am simultaneously texting, uploading music to my portable music device, and knocking back a glass of wine. Who said that you can't do it all at once? (Let me add: it's easier to do it all at once after the kids are in bed)

This month's highlights:

Adrian got one of those hippity-hop bouncy balls. The basement is the perfect location for rainy day bouncing.

We visited Aaron's parents. It was a nightmare drive out there, with Adrian whining and screaming for nearly the entire drive.

My mom came to visit! Whee! As in weee packed A LOT into 4 days.

And finally: Fiona has learned to read. Well, not really. But every day she pulls all the books off the shelf and carefully inspects each one.

She's either going to be a librarian or have a wicked case of OCD.

Happy April, all.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Look! It's Fiona!

Egads! She stands!
I realize that Fiona has been getting the short end of the blogging stick of late. That's not because she's low baby on the totem pole, so much as it is that she is so very good. She sleeps well, she eats well, and she's quite possibly the most cheerful person I know.
I figure I'd post some photos and let you all bask in the joy that is Fiona Wee.

She loves to eat--all the live long day.

She helps Dad sort the laundry.

And she's almost ALWAYS smiling. Deeeelightful, through and through.
Now, brace yourselves...Adrian has a new haircut.

He's in the middle of chewing, which is why the funny face. But the hair! He requested a "sweet mohawk" from his dad last week and dad complied.
Boys will be boys, no doubt about that.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Posts from the land of Zombies.

Hullo to all--

I am writing to you from a place I haven't been in many many years: sleep deprived. It's an awful place and I recommend that you don't visit. Ever. How did I come to be here, you ask? Ah. Sit back and relax while I regale you with the tale of the past three weeks....

Things you should know beforehand: Aaron's job has a crazy swinging schedule. He works 4 dasy for 13 hours a day and then has 4 off. For 2 months he works during the day--leaving the house at 5am and returning home at 7pm. Then they switch! And he works nights. Same deal, 13 hour days.
Now our tale of terror: When he's on days, Aaron gets home and we all sit down and have dinner together. Then he and Adrian play while I put Fiona to bed. When he's on nights I am outnumbered by 2 tiny people to whom the word 'patience' is merely a collection of sounds. Basically I'm being yelled at by either Adrian or Fiona. Fiona b/c she's tired or wants attention, and Adrian b/c I won't ignore Fiona and "leave her in her bed". Even if it were possible to train her to go to bed at 5pm, I wouldn't do simply because then she'd be up at 5am. Not that that would make a difference. Herein lies the problem: Adrian HATES it when Aaron works nights. It creates all kinds of anxiety that his 3 year old brain is unable to put into words. It gets translated into actions instead...he has nightmares and he wakes up every 2 hours and seeks me out. It started 3 weeks ago and is continuing to this day. He sleeps in his bed until midnight just fine, and then I see him at 12, 2, 4 and 6 when he finally starts his day. Of course somewhere in there Fiona wakes up for her nightly feeding, so I'm up for that too. I've taken to going to bed at 9:30 so I can get 3ish hours of uninterrupted sleep. I hate this. I hate being so exhausted that I have no patience. I hate feeling trapped to this horrendous cycle of no sleep. I hate that I can't fix it. He's too little to be medicated. I don't know what to do. I don't know what to say to Adrian to convince him that I'm not going to disappear in the middle of the night.

Monday, March 03, 2008

It takes a 3 year old...

It takes a 3 year old to demonstrate enthusiasm for food in a way that no one else can match.

Hey all.
Sorry to leave you hanging after the last post of doom and gloom. But life is chugging along and I am trying to find time to sit down at the computer rather than do all of the other mundane tasks of momdom.
Things here are allright. Adrian is going to preschool 3 days a week for 6 hours which gives me a little time to breathe deeply and enjoy the quiet. Fiona is crawling and pulling up and following Adrian at every opportunity, which he is enjoying (this week). I am making grand plans for gardens and art (involving solder!), and finding my life full of all of the blah chores: laundry, cooking, dishes, keeping the floors free of debris for the crawling girl. I'd love to tackle a big chore like making a pile of things to donate to Goodwill, but the very thought of such a project wears me out.
And now I have to go for a hair cut, with someone other than my regular stylist b/c she called in sick--this is the second appointment that has been canceled. I'm starting to take it a little personally. All of that is to say that I may be sporting a terrible head of hair for the forseeable future. In which case: hooray for hats.

Friday, February 22, 2008



Amber keeps asking me to post about me, so if you are completely bored by self-indulgent mundane drivel now would be the time to walk away.

Aaaah. Let's see. The weighty question I've been asked to answer is how I'm doing. The glib answer to that would be fair to medium. The long answer, if you've got the time is as follows:

I'm doing better.
Winter is the worst time of the year for me. I hate the cold. I hate being trapped indoors. I hate getting up before the sun. I hate that I can't go outside and plunk a plant in the ground until the end of April due to the ground being an iceberg with some dirt mixed in. I'm frustrated by my 3 year-old. Not because he's doing anything particularly awful or out of character but because I have been so black I can't see the humor in raising a high-spirited smarty pants. My patience has been non-existent these past 2 months and I feel like I've been yelling over stupid shit and basically putting everyone around me on edge. I see it, I know it's happening and I can't stop myself. It's really awful to know that you're the party crasher. That being said, this past week I feel like I've turned a corner. Maybe it's because the sun is getting up before me, maybe it's because February is almost over, maybe it's because I have gotten back into exercising--or maybe it's because Adrian's back to preschool and I feel like I can get 10 minutes of quiet before the sun goes down. I think it has more to do with daylight than preschool--but I'm not ruling anything out.
With this renewed energy I'm also sneaking moments here and there to get some art done, and that gives me a sense of purpose (outside of being the mom). I am still trying to figure out how to parlez that art-thing into a money maker. It could be difficult, considering my last 5 graphic design jobs were done for free. To be fair, I do get portfolio filler and references should I ever decide to pursue the graphic design route. I just dunno. It would be great to have people pay me to "art it up". Any of you out there want to pass me some cash in exchange for some art just say the word, yo.
On that note I'm gonna take my chilly buns upstairs and get working on my newest piece.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Photos for you!

Welcome to February--my worst month of the year. I get a full on case of the blahs and do a lot of avoidance of any extraneous activities. Hence, blogging gets a back seat. As does laundry and dishes 2 days out of 5. But that's ok. I am kept plenty busy managing a 3 year old and an 8 month old who crawls. And here they are:

This is Fiona's usual expression and a general comment on her overall personality and demeanor.

Here is Adrian with his personal hero, Nick. (Aaron's cousin)

Here is Adrian and Aunt Elaine--the famous Aunt Elaine who helped me to so many prenatal appointments.

Adrian with Aunt Erica--his favorite girl in the whole wide world. This may be because she lets him do things that are verboten at home, or just because she's fun.

And here is Adrian with Uncle Austin, who's home on leave for a month. Austin's nickname is Spud. Adrian calls him Uncle Fud.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

arr, matey.

Now that Adrian is 3 there are some concepts that we're supposed to be teaching him; compliance with the social contract, manners, and a sense of boundaries.
So we were hanging on the couch after he had bathed and a teachable moment presented itself. I casually mention the parts of his body that are considered private and that the only people who should be touching that part of him are his parents, his doctor and himself. I also mention that he shouldn't be touching anyone else's privates. He nods thoughtfully and I think: I am so awesome at this! I should totally open a school for parent-child communication!
And then he says: but I want to touch pirates.
Let's start over, shall we?
PRivates, not PIrates.