Happy anniversary!

July 22, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Making people gag with our sugar-sweet marriage for 4 years now. I love you with all my everything, Nick.

Playground Manners (For Parents)

July 15, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Ever since the nice weather began, Henry and I have been spending a lot of time outside. We have a nice little routine going where we hit the most popular playground in the neighbourhood at least once a day, between nap times. This playground seems like the place to be – both for meeting other babies as well as other parents. When I realize Hank hasn’t seen another baby in a while, I decide it’s time to go have some time on the swings so he can check out some cute boy or girl his own size.

It’s also great for me to get out and socialize with like-minded people since my only departure from taking care of Henry is a 10 hours a week in which I have a babysitter, but still work at home. And when I use the term “like-minded”, it really only applies to the parenthood portion of our lives, which when you have a baby, is about 90% of the present life pie chart.

These encounters with other parents (or sitters/nannies) always start the same way:

“Awww, he/she is a cutie! How old is he/she? What’s his/her name?”

From there, it takes off into a conversation of comparisons and contrasts. Are they teething? What foods are they eating? Do they sleep through the night? Are they walking or crawling? And before long, you find yourself telling a stranger about your birthing experience or listening to a woman who loves the convenience of breast feeding, but her boobs are just too huge now. The best part: “Oh, by the way, I’m Christina. What’s your name?”

I laugh every time it happens, while reminding myself to make sure I introduce myself before either of us unload what would be TMI for a childless person. Luckily, I have met a few cool people there and everyone seems very friendly and ready to talk about what’s going on in their personal parenting life.

Does this happen to anyone else, or is it solely a New York/big city thing?

8 Months with Henry

July 2, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Henry is 8 months old today! Here’s what’s been happening.

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Nick’s first Father’s Day was a blast (way more relaxing than my first Mother’s Day ;) and Henry’s Grandpa Storch came to visit. Even though he hasn’t been here since the winter, Henry took to him immediately.

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Our beloved babysitter found a great full-time job for another family so she won’t be with us regularly anymore, but we will still find some weekend days and evenings for her to spend time with him. He was great at helping us interview new women for the position this weekend though!

Although meal time is still very messy, Henry is slowly getting better at it and gaining a bigger appetite. However, he pretty much demands that you read him stories nonstop while feeding him. He has a good repertoire of fruits and vegetables he eats regularly, plus multigrain cereal. This week, he’s trying tofu!

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Speaking of eating, after my parents visited us last month and we took him out to eat with them a few times, we decided to have a family brunch every Saturday. Henry just loves eating out so much! We’ve sat at the first table at Brooklyn Label a few times and he gets to watch everyone come in, make eyes at ladies’ waiting in line for take out coffee, and bang on the table while eating his lunch. What a great time.

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Henry is really becoming quite the little person. He will now let you know if he’s unhappy that you took something away from him, responds to the phrase “do you want to read a book?” with shrieks that we take to mean “FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, YES!!!”. He has all kinds of noises he loves to make from saying “mom” to screaming like Ned Flanders to get our attention.

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Seriously though, he loves reading THIS MUCH.

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We’ve been spending our summer days at the playground and the park. Yesterday Henry discovered the splash pad and lost his mind. The swing is a dependable favourite where he usually gets to meet another baby or toddler who will sit beside him, which makes me feel better about him being an only child not in daycare. I feel lucky to live in a big city where people are out doing things and walking around constantly so having him meet at least one other baby a day is a pretty reasonable goal.

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I think crawling will be happening any day now, but I’m enjoying my non-mobile son while I still can ;)

To-Do Lists Gone Wild

June 18, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Do any other parents out there get strangely motivated to do everything and anything they can while your kid naps? Just now, here are some of the things going through my head that I’d like to accomplish in the span of time (anywhere from 45 minutes to 2.5 hours) I am free:

  • Work
  • Call that potential sitter
  • Post about needing a sitter
  • Vacuum the part of the apartment furthest from Henry’s room
  • Go through my closet to get rid of clothes
  • Email that other Canadian mom I met at yoga
  • Make the bed
  • Transfer approximately 600 photos of Henry off my phone onto my computer

…but instead of doing any of those things, I’m writing a blog about it instead. Priorities.

Happy first Father’s Day

June 15, 2014 § Leave a comment

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Happy 1st Father’s Day to my amazing other half, Nick. In these mere 7 months of being a dad, you have surpassed all my expectations. It’s been surreal to begin this lifelong journey with you. Henry is one lucky dude.

Aw, nuts.

June 6, 2014 § 2 Comments

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So here’s a crazy story that I haven’t told a lot of people. This is how my first Mother’s Day REALLY went…

Nick was out of town on a bachelor party trip for one of his best friends and was due to return the next afternoon. Henry and I woke up around 6:30 and I made myself some tea and oatmeal, as I have every morning for the past 6 months or so. Henry had just hit the 6 months old mark which meant it was really time to start introducing him to solid food. Our pediatrician believes in the “just go for it!” approach and give them everything except for honey. While she said that peanut butter shouldn’t be their first food, there’s no need to wait until they’re 3 years old to give them a taste.

Before I actually sat Henry down with a bowl full of his own food, I had been giving him tastes of things I would be eating at the time like hummus, avocado, tomato jam from a sandwich, and bits of my oatmeal, which I usually put apples, walnuts, and cinnamon into. Although I had given him a bit of plain oatmeal on this particular morning, apparently it was not far enough away from the walnuts or walnut dust, and within 10 minutes, his face broke out in red splotches! I noticed them appearing as I was changing his diaper. He was also getting the hiccups, but I didn’t know if that was related or not, but it certainly didn’t help.

So it was 7:00 am on a Sunday. I was alone in the apartment. My first thought was to call his doctor’s office, but of course they were closed. Their answering machine message said to hang up and call 911 if it was an emergency and I decided pretty quickly that my 6 month old baby having an allergic reaction to nuts probably was one.

There we were, just after 7:00 on a Sunday morning, welcoming firemen and EMS into our apartment while Henry smiles his hive-covered face. Luckily, he never stopped breathing and his mouth or tongue didn’t swell up. I really was hoping the 911 operator would tell me to use the Benadryl I had handy, but they insisted on sending help and taking us to a hospital. They don’t mess around.

By the time we got to the hospital (the one he was born at – kind of a funny Mother’s Day trip), Henry’s face had cleared completely. They took his vitals, which appeared to be fine. They gave me a prescription for an epi pen, just incase it happened again with a worse outcome. A couple days later, we had a follow up visit to his pediatrician who referred us to an allergist.

Just last week, Nick and I ate a dinner that included pine nuts in our kale salad. Henry had none of this, but was eating his bananas at the same time. Over 2 hours later, he woke up in his crib screaming, his face all red and puffy and nose stuffed up. We immediately blamed the pine nuts and gave him Benadryl which cleared him right up, but he slept in bed with me just incase.

Now we are keeping all nuts away from Henry, although Nick and I are kind of suspicious that maybe the last episode had more to do with teething and the cold he would end up getting the next day… Either way, we are both hopeful and worried. Does anyone out there have any advice or similar stories? We are looking forward to finding out what he’s actually allergic to during our appointment next month!

7 Months with Henry

June 3, 2014 § Leave a comment

Henry is 7 months old this week! He is well on his way to becoming a little boy – every once in a while, I’ll snap a photo of him that gives me a glance into what he’ll look like when he’s a little older. It’s crazy!

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He now has two funny little bottom teeth that he’s created a whole new scrunchy smile to show them off with. He’s still teething pretty seriously which has made for some bumpy nights. Fingers crossed those top teeth come in soon too.

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He loves swinging at the playground every day. It’s funny how you get used to your routine of what you do to entertain a baby and sometimes forget that they are constantly growing and changing and can do new things every once in a while. Thank goodness for our wonderful sitter Sherry who gently prodded me into telling her she could give him his first ride on the baby swings about a month ago!

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The nice weather makes things so much more enjoyable – the days go by so much quicker when you can fill them with walks (where you don’t have to constantly worry if your baby is warm enough), playgrounds, parks, and sitting on the grass, looking out over the East River. WAY better than trying to entertain a baby in an apartment for 10 hours a day!

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He went to his first birthday party this month too! We celebrated Annie and Henry got to spend some time with his pal Rocco.

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The biggest change in the past month was introducing solids. It’s such a funny thing to think about having to teach a tiny person to eat food. You’d think they’d want it, but they don’t! Henry started out eating avocado from his Boon spoon.

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Then I started to actually make things like pureed/mashed sweet potatoes, pears, and bananas, and gave him multigrain cereal, so he needed to use a real spoon. It’s frustrating at first, but after a few weeks, he’s doing much better and actually ingesting the food. Hurray!

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We did have a scary moment a while back – Henry might be allergic to nuts. That’s a story for another post. We’re keeping it light here, so more later.

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We were so happy to have a visit from my parents this past weekend. That meant Henry got to go out for two lunches and a dinner, plus lots of walks, swings, and presents from Grandma and Grandpa!

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All in all, Henry is such a delight. His funny noises, amazing giggles, and the one word he knows (“Mom :)) make us smile every day. Nick and I still look at photos and videos of him on our phones every night after we put him to bed. We just can’t get enough.

P.S. One of the best moments of the past month.

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