Saturday, December 24, 2011

Backlog: Doctor's visit

I think this is the last of the backlog posts. This will (mostly) catch everyone up on the goings-on the Durso household.

Johnny and Hank were both due for their doctor's appointments around the same time; Johnny for his 2 year (I know, it's weird that I have to a two-year-old now) and Hank for his 6 month. So the receptionist managed to schedule them for the same day within 20 minutes of each other. Perfect! Only one trip to the doctor! It certainly couldn't have worked out any better.

I must have been high on crack the day I made those appointments.

It started off well enough. Johnny was distracted by my iPhone and Hank was sleeping in the Ergo. Then Hank had to be taken out for measuring and weighing. Then Johnny had to be weighed (on a real big-boy scale!) and have his height measured. Then we waited twenty more minutes for the doctor to come in... and then it was fall out juggling. Put Hank on the table, hold Hank's chest and keep Johnny from leaving the room. Put Hank in the Ergo and pick Johnny up. Put Hank down and hold Johnny on the table. Put leg out to keep Johnny from bolting out of the office. Even then, it wasn't too bad. What I forgot about were the shots. Oh, the shots!! Both boys needed immunizations, thus both had to be stuck in the arm or leg with a needle and then both needed to comforted. Johnny went first and was MAJORLY upset. Then Hank needed a bazillion shots, so I was left with a screaming baby and a crying clingy toddler.

I'll never do that again.

Anyway! Here are the boys' stats for your perusal:
Height: 36 inches - 87th percentile
Weight: 31 pounds - 82nd percentile

Height: 28 inches - 93rd percentile
Weight: 19 pounds - 77th percentile

You better watch out, Johnny, Hank is bigger than you were at the same age! He's not called Hank the Tank for nothing!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Backlog: Hank is 6 months old!

I'm 6 months (and 6 days) old now!
Mommy's been so busy trying to get me to sleep that I haven't had a chance to blog about my 6 month birthday! Sheesh, Mom, give it a rest for a second, okay?! 

Anyway. I've spent the last month quitting the whole sleeping thing. Life is just too interesting to miss, you know? I've also spent the last month growing some pretty long hair. I get lots of comments on how long and wispy it is. Some have even compared to Einstein's coif, though I don't think it's quite that extreme. Maybe one day... if Daddy doesn't insist on getting me a buzz cut.

I'm SO close to being able to sit on my own. For some reason I'm more motivated to sit by myself in the bath tub than anywhere else. Maybe because if I fall over I'll whack my head on a hard surface? Or because if I fall over in the tub I could inhale water? I don't know, I'm just able to sit unassisted in the tub and that's it. 

I also started eating solid foods this month and I'm getting pretty good at eating. At first I enjoyed blowing bubbles in the food Mommy tried to give me, but now I have discovered how great solid foods can taste and always have my mouth open like a baby bird when it's food time. 

My eyes continue to get bluer by the day and may actually be as light as Johnny's eventually... it's certainly something to strive for. You know, other than being big enough to rough house with him at some point.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Backlog: Johnny's birthday gifts

Johnny got TONS of gifts for his birthday. Our friends and family were quite generous, that's for sure. During the party, we tried to entice Johnny to open a few gifts thinking he would love to rip some wrapping paper to shreds, but no dice. So I decided to just leave them wrapped for awhile for whenever he showed interest.

Five days later the presents were still wrapped. This child of mine? Not into stuff, apparently.

John and I ended up opening all of them ourselves. So anticlimactic. But here's a picture of Johnny with one of the many gifts he got:
Yes, that's a Mater pillow. With a tow cable and everything.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Backlog: Johnny's "Cars" birthday party

I know, I know, I haven't been here. Sorry about that. I've been attempting to sleep train Hank for naps and nighttime using the Baby Whisperer method for the last eight days which means I spend a majority of each day and night bent over Hank's crib patting and shushing him to get him to learn to fall asleep independently. It's hell.

Anyway. So Johnny turned two last week and we held his birthday party the week before that. Friends and family were invited to celebrate with us and we all had a delightful time... even if I burned my first garlic bread in the oven and Johnny refused to open presents. The cake was pretty kick-ace if I may say so myself. :)

Yes, I did design and make the cake myself.

My friend Carly and little girl Lina.

Looking like the Joker after having birthday cake
Overall, fun was had by all... even Johnny who spent most of the party outside by the pool where there weren't any guests. Thanks for coming, all!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Dear Johnny

Dear Johnny,

On Tuesday you turned two. Two whole years old. Why does that sound so old to me? You've only been here on this planet for two years and yet, I feel like it's been so much longer. I have fit more smiles, laughs, tears, hugs and kisses into the last two years than I did in the previous ten all because of you, Johnny.

You make me laugh so hard with your constantly developing vocabulary and grammar skills. You're stringing funny words into sentences that makes me think, "Where did you learn that?" Just yesterday I asked if you wanted to take a bath or a shower and you responded, "No bath. And no shower either." Just like that. Perhaps when you are old enough to read this post, that little response will seem so trivial, but I can tell you that it's huge, considering this time last year you weren't uttering a single intelligible syllable.

You make me want to hug and kiss you (almost) all the time. The way you come out of your room after your nap with sheet marks on one cheek, a dazed smile on your face and Blankee in hand makes me want to swoop you up and kiss you until you giggle uncontrollably. How you say, "Mommy come play you!" when you want me to come upstairs and hang out with you makes my heart melt. And the way you hold my hand when we're in a parking lot or crossing the street makes me feel all gooey inside.

You make me want to cry sometimes, too. Those times when you choose Daddy or Grandma or Grandpa over me makes my heart break a little, but I've been trying really hard not to let you see it; I certainly don't want to guilt you into choosing me. The rare times when you're trying so hard to get me to understand something and your frustration at me bubbles over into tears makes me feel like an awful mommy. Those times when it's obvious how fast you are growing up and will one day leave me behind to start your own family. Such a sad thought, and yet so happy as well.

Even though I think a lot about your future, it's the present that really matters to me. There are so many things you do that I want to remember, but it's like trying to hold water in your hands as it runs out of a faucet. You do so many new things every day that I forget what you did this morning to make room in my brain for everything you've done this afternoon.

In ten years I want to remember that you have a penchant for whole grain bagels smeared with cream cheese and how you need to have a napkin nearby when you eat them because you hate having wet stuff on your hands.

In ten years I want to remember how you walked like Frankenstein for a few days when I finally got you to wear a pair of shoes with a hard sole on them.

In ten years I want to remember how you enjoyed holding Hank for a couple of seconds and then would push him away from you saying, "Nuff!" after you were over it.

In ten years I want to remember your curiosity when it comes to letters and numbers and how you love this particular part of the "Elmo" DVD where there's a countdown from 10 to 1.

There are all of these little things that make up our days together that are so everyday and normal now, but will eventually become precious if I can manage to hold onto those memories. All I can hope for in the next year is that our days together will be just as full as the last 365 have been.

Johnny, you have made my life so much fuller by being a part of it and I wouldn't trade a single minute from the last two years for anything in the world.

Thank you for being my son, Johnny. Happy 2nd birthday.


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Thanksgiving... two weeks later.

Remember that time Hank stopped taking naps and sleeping at night? And then Johnny decided that 8:30pm is an appropriate bedtime and 5:00am is the perfect time to wake up? No? I guess I didn't tell you that because I have no free time in which to blog about it. Sorry for being MIA.

Anyway. I really don't have the motivation to do a full post, so I will merely post pictures from our Thanksgiving weekend.

Hank hanging with Uncle Scott at my Mom's for Thanksgiving Day
Hank with my cousin Carole

My mom with all of the boys!

Hank with my mom's friend Sue.
My mom and me... can you tell we're related?

Then Friday we spent at John's parents' cabin with John's family.
John and Hank with their cousin Jack.
Playing with Aunt Margie

Gail's always taking pictures and is never in the pictures herself... so here she is doing her thing

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Turkey Day, all!

We're celebrating with my mom and brothers (and associated non-relatives) today and I'm sure I will take pictures. Okay, well, moderately sure I'll take pictures. And I'll share them with you someday soon. Promise.

In the meantime, check out the pictures I've been taking on my brand new iPhone!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

This post brought to you by...

While many people are familiar with caffeine, many don't trouble to recognize it's molecular structure. You're welcome.
Seriously, it's the only way I get through the day with a semblance of a smile on my face. Funny, considering I used to proclaim that I would NEVER get addicted to coffee.

See, growing up, my mom used to work the night shift at the local hospital; she was (and still is) an RN. She'd work two to three 12-hour shifts (from 7pm to 7am) a week and would pick up an extra here and there when we needed to pay for something, like a vacation or Christmas gifts or what not. The woman LOVED her coffee. It was common knowledge to everyone who knew her, which means that her birthday and Christmas gifts were coffee-related. Thus, when we moved out to San Diego, she had to part with more than 20 coffee cups.

Anyway, returning from the tangent. She used to talk to me about how she would get headaches at certain times in the day if she didn't have enough coffee and that sounded horrible to me. Headaches? From withdrawal? Well, then I'll NEVER drink that much coffee!!!

Fast forward to two kids later: I'm addicted. I don't even work night shifts (or any shifts for that matter) and I can't make it through the day without at least one cup. Most days I require two. Sometimes more if Johnny's being particularly difficult... I'm serious, it helps. My mood mysteriously elevates after I down a cup of caffeine-filled goodness, which brings me to a statement one of my mommy friends made recently: "The only reason I am the mom I am is coffee."

At least I know I'm not the only one who is "using".

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Mark it.

We went to Target yesterday. Normally, this would not be all that out of the ordinary because I go to Target a lot (especially now that they have groceries!!!), except that this trip wasn't punctuated by Hank's screams and cries. We made it to and from Target without any crying in the car! Whoo-hoo! Granted, the trip is maybe 10 minutes long, but that's 20 minutes of car time. Rather substantial for Hank. He started to get a little antsy as we turned on to our street, but other than that he was an angel.

Friday, November 18, 2011

5 months!

I'm five months old tod- oops... yesterday!
Man, oh man did Mommy drop the ball on this one! She completely forgot to tell me the date, otherwise I would have posted on my actual five-month birthday. It seems she has trouble remembering that I'm a baby and can't read a calendar... though I can blog with the best of them. :)

Even though I'm five months old now, I still enjoy grabbing my feet. I haven't yet pulled them into my mouth, but I'm just not that interested in the taste of toe jam yet. I really enjoy sucking on my fingers, though. So much so that I no longer require a swaddle because I like to have access to my fingers at will. I still put myself to sleep most nights with the help of my hands, but I nap in the ring sling like I have since the day I was born. Mommy did attempt a little sleep training Baby Whisperer-style, but stopped after two naps because I kept waking myself up with coughing fits. There hasn't been another chance to try sleep training because I keep getting sick. Mommy thinks that napping in the ring sling is also pretty convenient, especially since we'll be visiting family throughout the holiday season. It just makes me more mobile.

I'm still happy as can be! Smiles all the time, except when I'm tired, and I'm laughing a lot more easily now. I like to play peek-a-boo and I love it when Mommy makes silly noises right next to my ear. Makes me laugh every time! I'm also fascinated by my big brother and love to watch him play with his toys or hang out in a wrap on Mommy while she plays chase with Johnny. Baths can get a little difficult though because I'm so tall that I get in Johnny's way when he's playing. Hopefully I'll start sitting up soon and bathing together won't be such a problem anymore.

I had the ultrasound on my hip done this week and the tech insinuated that my hips look great, but a doctor has to look at the pictures before any official ruling can be made. However, I'm perfectly happy with that diagnosis and am sure my pediatrician will draw the same conclusion. I'm sure Mommy will let you know when that happens!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Why I know I'll have more babies...

Because of expressions like this:

As you can see, Hank is still fascinated by the camera, but he's gotten better at performing for said piece of technology. Thanks, Hank!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

23 months!

I'm 23 months old today!
Wow. Only one month away from the big 2!

This past month has brought lots of changes, especially in my communication skills. I have finally figured out how to put the end on some of my words. For instance, I used to say "mou!" for mouse, but now I say "mou..sssssse". I said my first three-syllable word this month: fireplace. I also know the entire alphabet along with the sound each letter makes. I can even tell you a word that starts with that letter, for most of the alphabet, that is. My favorite is the letter N, which says NNNNNNNN as in newt! Mom likes it when I say newt, so I say it a lot to get her to laugh.

I have most of my favorite books memorized now and Mom will test me sometimes by saying "Five little pumpkins sitting on a ....." and then I say "gate!"

Mom: "The first one said, 'Oh my it's getting....' "

Me: "Late!"

And so on and so forth. I have memorized The Five Little Pumpkins (a Halloween gift from Aunt Renea), Can You See What I See? and Goodnight Moon. Thank you, by the way, to Cousin Alison for telling Mom about finding the mouse in Goodnight Moon. We read that book almost every night before bed and I look for the mouse all over the place even though I know exactly where he is on each page.

I didn't enjoy going outside as much this month and have become even more of a Cars fanatic than last month. When I get up in the morning, I want to watch Cars. When I'm eating breakfast, I want to watch Cars. When I'm getting ready for a nap, I want to watch Cars. When I get from a nap, I want to watch Cars. Etc, etc, etc. Unfortunately, Mom only lets me watch Cars a little bit each day. I can watch it in the morning when I get up and then for a little bit with Daddy at bed time.

I am in a big Daddy phase right now and he is the only person I want to see all day every day. The nice thing about the time change is that when I wake up at 5:30am, instead of 6:30am like I used to, Daddy is still home! So I've been taking advantage of that. I don't like to go to bed and have been putting up some incredible battles when Daddy gets it in his head that it is bedtime. I was sleeping in my big boy bed pretty well until Daylight Savings ended and now I get up repeatedly before I finally fall asleep. What do they expect? They let me sleep in a bed without bars and think I'm going to stay there and sleep? Yeah right!!! I want to see what Mom and Daddy are up to! Silly parents.

I'm really looking forward to next month when I will be TWO MONTHS OLD! Hope to see everyone at my Cars -what else?- themed party!

Oh yeah, and Mom's birthday is today! Happy birthday, Mom!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

The time I got Johnny to wear pants.

I know the title of this post makes it sound like Johnny never wears pants, but what I really mean is that he usually only wears shorts. I've tried to put long pants on him on a few occasions, but he just ends up standing there looking me while crying, "OFF!! Pants off!!" and squirming as he tries to remove them on his own. Up until now I've always given in and then put him in shorts. Now that's getting colder, it's much more practical for him to be in pants. So I tried it this past week.

Turns out that all I had to do was put them on while he was watching Cars. The best part? He didn't complain about them at all. Not once during the entire day. I must say, they make him look an awful lot older, don't you think?

This is where I need to rave about Oshkosh jeans and their designers: PURE GENIUS! See, Johnny has a big belly and very narrow hips, thus, jeans do not stay on him unless they have elastic in the waistband. Well, when I went to Oshkosh to get Johnny some new clothes, I was dumbfounded that they do not have elastic waistbands... what they have instead is adjustable elastic! Even though they're a little stretchy, I can make the waist even smaller if I need to, like when he's going through a growth spurt and gets all skinny. Then when he's eating a lot and getting chubby, I can make the waist bigger so it doesn't bother him as much. Those baby clothes people sure know what they're doing!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Beating the Catch-22

I felt that this event deserved to be immortalized with a post all its own.

See, Hank hates the car. Hates it. H to the A to the T to the E to the S. HATES it. I've tried using car seat toys to occupy him. I've tried covering the whole seat with a blanket to avoid overstimulation. I've tried putting him in after being fed. I've tried putting him in after he's taken a nap. I've tried putting him in when he's sleepy. I've tried lots of things. After all of these experiments, there are three things I've discovered:
1. Opening the window will keep him from crying for at least 5 minutes.
2. Turning on 90s rock helps him settle (a kid after my own heart... he likes Live!)
3. Hank hates the car.

Now, the funny thing about 1 and 2: whenever I open the windows, Johnny DEMANDS that they be closed (he's always hated having the windows open) and if I'm playing anything other than Johnny's CD, he DEMANDS that I turn his "songs" on... but Hank hates Johnny's songs.

Basically, I can't win in the car. If Johnny's songs are on/the windows are closed, Hank is upset and Johnny can't sleep. If Johnny's songs aren't on/the windows are open, Hank is quiet and Johnny is upset. Catch-22.

Until last Saturday, when this happened:

Oh yeah, they BOTH fell asleep after visiting Aunt Jackie, Uncle Josh and his family. They were asleep for 20 minutes... it was the quietest car ride I've had in five months and I enjoyed every minute of it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Daylight Savings Time + Two babies = Seventh circle of hell

I used to look forward to the whole "fall back" thing. An extra hour of sleep? HELL YES! I'd go to sleep at the usual time only to wake up the next morning feeling more refreshed than I had in ages.

If you're a parent, you know that shiz is totally over.

Normally, Hank and Johnny wake up around 6:30am or so. After the time change? 5:30am. Except that Hank decided THAT WASN'T EARLY ENOUGH and woke up at 5am on Sunday. Granted, he was being sweet and adorable, so I didn't mind too much.

After that, it's all been downhill. Since Hank woke up so early that morning, he wanted to go to bed for the night at 4:30pm. Normally he's in bed between 6:30pm and 7:00pm. I wasn't about to let him go to bed that early only to wake up at 3:30am. So I kept him up and tried to get him to take an extra nap... which resulted in 20 minutes of extra sleep and two hours of extra screaming and crying. Now, Hank is an angel baby, so imagine my shock when he begins screaming at the top of his lungs around 5:30pm on Sunday... I thought he had Ebola or something. But no. No hemorrhagic fever, just overtiredness. He eventually went to sleep, but it was fitful at best, resulting in me getting up to soothe him every hour or so in the night. The next day he was grumpy, out-of-sorts and all around fussy from being so tired... and I was too. Johnny also hasn't been sleeping as much (also because the recent transition to his big boy bed) so his fuse was short.

I think we hit rock bottom yesterday afternoon when I took the humidifier away from Johnny and he had a meltdown from frustration and exhaustion. Johnny's cries woke up Hank, who then proceeded to scream and cry from frustration and exhaustion. And there I was, in the middle of it and feeling helpless, so I cried from frustration and exhaustion.

However, I think we're on the upswing. Hank has napped normally today and at his usual times while Johnny went down relatively easily for his nap and has been a good boy all day. Hopefully this means that Hank will sleep longer than 45 minute segments and go back to his normal happy self.

Daylight Savings Time: Suck it.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

And finally....

... Halloween pictures!

Having two kids means that I get to do coordinating costumes!! However, since they're so little, and thus don't care much about Halloween, I chose to do something easy and cheap: The Super Mario Brothers! I made their hats using this tutorial and the rest (overalls and shirts) I either had already or got for cheap.

 Johnny didn't dig his hat (he removed it after the first picture), but he LOATHED his mustache. So I drew one one him instead.
Sad Mario.

 Hank, however, LOVED the mustache. But we had to take it off because he started eating it. So I drew one on his face, too.
I know, they have little Frenchie mustaches and not the big, bushy Italian plumber mustaches like they're supposed to have, but do you know how difficult it is to draw a mustache on a baby's face?? It's like trying "to hit a bullet with a smaller bullet whilst wearing a blindfold, riding a horse" as Scotty from Star Trek would say. [NERD ALERT!]
Off with the hat!!!

Off with HANK'S hat!

Aw, a picture of the brothers!

Scratch that. No picture of the brothers.

Halloween is fun!

The crew walking home from a wearying candy expedition.
My in-laws, John and Gail, joined us for the Trick-or-Treating event (which stopped at approximately three houses and then involved Johnny running down the street and toward the supermarket) and Gail took all of the pictures for us. Thank you!

Now... what do I do next year that doesn't involve hats? Or mustaches, for that matter.