Monday, February 27, 2012

Scattered Thoughts

Liam is refusing to nap today.  He’s lying in his crib yelling at me and I’m ignoring him.  It’s for his own good…and he’s not screaming..he’s talking and randomly shouting, “Ahamama” or “Baa”  We took a two mile walk in the park to try to calm him down, but it didn’t seem to work today.  There is a playground exactly one mile from our that it’s a great turning around point….not so much that it isn’t a super toddler friendly playground….we’ll figure out this summer what Liam can/can’t play on…for now, as a non-walker, he just gets to look at it as we walk by.

Liam is refusing to nap for two reasons (that I’m aware of).  One—he is getting his first tooth.  A bit of white is poking out of his gums today, so there’s that.  And two, he has a cold.  He hasn’t been breathing the best and we’ve been up the last 3 nights.  Andy is also sick, so it’s just not a fun house to be in right now.  And I’m sucking down coffee to stay awake and Emergen-C to stay well.

Andy repainted our bathroom while Liam and I were gone last weekend (not the one that just ended…the one before).  We were at my mom and dad’s for the weekend for Mariah’s bachelorette party, Mariah’s bridal shower, and Theodore’s birthday party—we packed a lot into our little weekend.  There are two trains of thought coming from this—first, the bathroom.  Andy painted it and I love it.  It’s a blue-gray color and it’s so peaceful and bright.  We are going to paint the vanity, replace the mirror, and I have a few minor accessories to switch up, and I’ll post pictures.  It’s about to usurp Liam’s room as my favorite in the house.

Second, the weekend—we had a blast.  Here is a favorite picture of mine that my sister sent….it’s the reality of trying to take a picture with a two year old and a nine month old…and I loved what Shannon said as we were taking it, “We only have two kids right now”…as in, this picture is going to get so much harder in the next few years as our little families expand. (Side note…we totally need a whole group shot at Mariah’s wedding…like with our husbands)


That second one is better.

And lastly….I am finally trying to do something about my baby weight.  It’s disgusting (see above).  So I am kicking my butt into gear…and posting it here for accountability.  Liam and I have been going for walks most days (when it’s warm enough), and I have been doing some exercise videos.  I ordered two new ones last week….one is a post natal workout that is supposed to be excellent for abs…several of the reviews said, “I had my child seventeen (or some other number) years ago, and this workout has helped me to recover a bit of what my abs looked like before”  So I didn’t feel too bad about my nine month old.  Andy and I talked this weekend, and he’s super supportive of anything I want to do….so my goal right now is to eat healthfully, exercise 4-6 times a week, and not be a gluttonous slob.  I created an incentive program for myself….I am breaking my goal down into increments…because the actual number I need to lose is scary big.  Each time I hit an incremental goal, I get to buy a new outfit.  This helps in a few ways…first, I really don’t have many clothes, and I need some new ones…and two, I will stay focused because I want to hit that goal.  I think this may be my first outfit….only now it seems kind of masculine to me, and I may pick something else…or go with a shorter short and a shoe with some heel or something metallic:


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Several for the baby book

Liam has been picking up new skills right and left.  Since Sunday, he has waved bye-bye, clapped, and given kisses.  He leaned in and kissed Mariah on Sunday at Theodore’s birthday party (the open mouth on the cheek). He did it like four times in a row before I realized what he was doing…and then he kissed Mariah and Shannon before we left.  Since then, he’s been kissing when you give him your cheek.  Most of the time…not always. 

He started clapping on Tuesday.  He gets excited or angry and he starts clapping.  He won’t clap when I clap, but today, we were at a friend’s house, and he was clapping every time their four-year-old daughter clapped.  She would clap, then he would clap, and she would shout, “Congratulations.”  He also tried to kiss her on the cheek.

The bye-bye wave was today.  I was holding him at the friend’s house, and he just started waving his little hand.  No idea.  I’ve only see him do it that one time.

And he says Mamamama, rarely.  He did it Friday night when he was with my dad and Lauren, and then he did it yesterday.  He also stood unsupported for about five seconds yesterday.  And he started trying to pull up in his pack-n-play today.  I need to tell Andy that, so we can lower the crib.  And he is army crawling everywhere and trying to sit/stand in weird ways.

And the funniest/best/worst of all.  He threw his first temper tantrum today.  The girls had these little Mighty Mini popsicles, and Liam wanted one.  He was screaming and trying to crawl over me to get to his sweet friend’s popsicle.  It’s a good thing she had already asked him to be her prince (oh..yeah…Liam is now Prince Peach Pickles…or Pardner…), because with that kind of behavior, she wouldn’t have afterwards.  Now how does that sweet boy know about popsicles enough to want one?  Oh, you know, his Grandpa Cook shared one with him a few weeks ago in Indy.  He was a fan that day, but I had no idea he would remember them enough to want one today.  But he did.  And he ate pretty much the whole thing.  I sucked on it a few times.  It’s very small…probably not more than an inch long, but still….Liam ate a whole popsicle.  And it was the right brand (Popsicle) and everything…and they were seriously cool!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Green Smoothie

Someone *mysistercough* has asked me a few different times how I make my green smoothies, so I thought I would share here so that she can get finally try it, and finally remember it.  She’s a very busy girl with a lot going on in her brain, so I thought I’d make this a little easier.

First off, there is really no right way to do this….this is just the way I usually end up doing it.

I like to use almond milk for my smoothies….plain or vanilla.  Always unsweetened.  I’ve considered trying chocolate soy milk with banana, but I haven’t done it.  I’d have to remember to buy chocolate soy milk (which I really do love) and that’s not always something that happens.  So my first step is to mix a handful of spinach and almond milk in the blender.  The spinach gets much smoother this way, and you don’t end up with a leaf in your smoothie.

Once I have my green almond milk/spinach concoction, I just add whatever.  Lately I’ve been using the Golden Fruit blend from Schwans…it has pineapple, mango, peach, and strawberry, and it tastes almost tropical.  Sometimes I do just mango and peach.  Or just strawberry and something.  If we have bananas that are about to go bad (which means they are fully yellow in this house….we like our bananas nearly ripe…not fully ripe), I chop them up and freeze them to toss into smoothies. 

You can add lots of other stuff…flax seed, peanut butter, yogurt….but most days I just add a little water to make my smoothie drinkable through a straw.  I would like to try it with peanut butter/banana, but I share my smoothie with Liam (it’s easily one of his favorite foods), so no pb yet. Sometimes if I want it to taste really tropical, I’ll add a squirt of cream of coconut (the mixer you use to make pina coladas).  And that’s it.  If I was smart, I would have taken a picture…but I didn’t.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Be Mine, Valentine

We had a nice, low-key Valentine’s Day.  I have had a bit of a cold all week, so I’m spending a lot of time just resting and trying to keep rawhide/random pieces of paper out of Liam’s mouth.  So for Valentine’s Day this year, I made a batch of brownies in mini-muffin cups and decorated them (I used this recipe…they were the best brownies I have ever eaten in my life) and for lunch, I made some sushi and arranged it in a heart.  I had big plans to make dinner, too, but by mid-afternoon, I wasn’t feeling well, so Andy picked up Chinese takeout.  It ended up being way fun.  We have had Empress twice in the past week, and that makes me way happy.  I really like our little Chinese restaurant.  We hung out with Liam, and he took a bath with Andy.  After that, he went to bed and we watched a documentary on Netflix (I’ll post about it later…it’s a good one).  Then I fell asleep on the couch and the night was over.  So clearly, romance is alive and kicking at our house.  Here are a few pictures from our day (along with the cards that Liam and I had made/sent to Andy using Tiny Prints, which is hands down my new favorite site for cards…I will totally use them for our Christmas card next year—their quality is SO MUCH GREATER than any other I have seen.  I also sent a card to each of Liam’s grandparents…I added those at the bottom for fun.



Friday, February 10, 2012

Liam at 9 months

Liam Cook, you are no longer a bitty babe.  You are, in fact, quite large.  You weigh 23 lbs and 1 oz, and you are 30 inches long.  You are in a size three diaper, but I may change you soon. It’s been leaving marks on your thighs and I accidentally yanked a tab off the other night trying to put one on you, so I may buy a small pack of fours and see if that works better.

You like to play and yell and talk all the time.  You can say dada (or dadadadada) but you don’t really know that your dad is your dada.  You also say baba, and something that sounds a little like hey.  And you grunt.  And shout ahahahh.  You sit really well, and you go onto all fours and rock, but you aren’t crawling or pulling up yet.  Your dad is freaking out about it.  He thinks you’re delayed (you aren’t…you are fine) because you aren’t progressing as quickly as Madelyn, who is three weeks older than you.  But Madelyn is a girl, and the sixth child in her family, so I’m not too worried.  Daddy decided today that you have to start getting things for yourself.  He will turn on your light up toys and put them where you can’t reach them to try to force you to get them.  It’s all kind of funny.  We do spoil you…picking up your toys and moving you, so that’s probably why you aren’t moving.  So we’ll go with Daddy’s plan and make you work a little more. 

You are a good sleeper, but a very sensitive sleeper.  I think every baby has their own sleep personality, and yours is great…as long as you are at home, in your own routine, and we do everything exactly the same every time.  You wake up, you take a nap two hours after you wake up…your next nap comes about two hours after you wake up from that nap, and you go to bed around 6.  You may wake up at 4ish for a bottle, or you (rarely these days) sleep on through.  You usually get up sometime after 7 for the day.  If any of these steps are off, you get really agitated.  If you don’t nap well, you have night terrors.  They are horrible.  This is why we don’t go places very often…or if we do, we go between naps.  You had night terrors last Saturday at Grandma and Grandpa Cook’s, and we ended up leaving their house and driving home late at night to get you in your own bed.  You also had them Wednesday night….you were up late on Tuesday and Wednesday night, and you had an abbreviated morning nap on Wednesday.  They were the worst they have ever been on Wednesday…you woke up, which is rare, but then you couldn’t fall back asleep.  I ended up walking you to sleep and having you lie with me for a few hours on the sofa before I put you back down.  Then you were really upset when you woke up at 4…it took Daddy and I both to comfort you.

You went to your first funeral this month.  Your 108 year old great-great-grandma passed away.  You talked a lot during the service, so we had to leave.  You were very pleasant, but you didn’t want to be quiet.

You think Ollie is your BFF.  He’s not quite as sure about you.  You yank his hair a lot.  Bath time is your favorite time.  You splash around in the tub with your dad and you both think it’s the best.  Sometimes Ollie tries to climb in the tub with you to get your toys.

Liam, we love you…you are the best!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Desperation Lunches—or I only grocery shop every two weeks and I don’t shop accordingly

I have been a terrible grocery shopper since Liam’s been born.  It’s disturbing and ridiculous how bad I am.  I forget things, I can’t seem to make a cohesive list, and my spending is nuts.  I used to be really good at grocery shopping…and that’s totally gone out the window.  I also really hate doing it…so I extend my time far beyond what’s reasonable.  It has forced me to be creative though.  We’ve had some really good and interesting (and..keeping it real, some not so good) meals come from the nothing in our cupboards.  Here are three lunches I’ve cobbled together recently that weren’t half bad…and they used up random things that were about to go bad.

Chicken Salad A (I made a whole chicken, and we had leftovers, obviously…Andy doesn’t really love leftover chicken…so it became my lunch for a few days)


A handful of Craisins

Some pecan pieces

Green onion and celery

A Tbsp. of mayo

A shot of Dijon mustard

Salt, pepper, a bit of lemon juice (from a real lemon)

A tiny pinch of cinnamon

Chicken Salad B

The same as A, just exchange the Craisins for golden raisins and the cinnamon for curry powder

Bean Salad

1 can white beans

Green onions

Broccoli (I had some leftover steamed broccoli I just chopped up)

A quick shot of salad dressing (I used Trader Joe’s Tuscan Italian…basically a balsamic)

Any my favorite end of the week soup….take any veggies left in the fridge, chop them up, cook them in chicken broth, and puree it and add salt, pepper, and curry powder.  I find that I like this soup best if it has some carrot and/or sweet potato in it..something about the sweetness makes it super comforting with the curry powder.  And I like to keep a bag of broccoli/cauliflower mix in the freezer for this soup too.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Bad Hair Day

This is what happens when Daddy gives the baby a bath and puts him to bed when Mommy’s out to dinner with friends. 

We have a rough hair day the next day.

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Random pictures

Here are a few recent pictures…from different days, but all sweet!

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Boy clothes are 116 percent less cute than girl clothes…but this outfit makes me happy to have a boy…I love every bit of it.  From the two pocket jacket to the graphic onesie to the cords and the sweet action shoes.  Also, every piece of this outfit is from Old Navy or Baby Gap.  Wait..the pants are Osh Kosh…I forgot that.

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It’s rough being Ollie.  You know..the life where you steal avocados and leap into the bathtub with your brother and father and get dried off by your mom who had to pull avocado peel from your mouth while telling you you’ll be lucky to make it your second birthday.

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Super love the Hamlet quote…and it’s super appropriate for Liam’s current nap situation (thanks Shannon!)

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This happens every day.

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Guess whose groomer left the shop she was working at?  Guess whose parents are going to cave and pay someone else even though they don’t want to?  This guy!

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Liam can say dada.  Sometimes I think he knows Andy Cook is his dada…and sometimes I think it’s just the easiest thing to say.  Either way…his dadadadada is his favorite person.  I think you’ll see that here.

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Sippy Cup Love

Liam loves to chew on his sippy cup.  I don’t know that’s he’s actually sipping from it…but he’ll keep it in his mouth for a long time.

Look, it’s my sippy cup!

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Umm…can I go to the potty?

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Not yet…I’m taking pictures of your brother with his sippy cup!

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Seriously…the bathroom?  PLEASE!

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Okay…just one more..upside down this time!

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Thursday, February 2, 2012

Our late night television experience

Several months ago, I told Andy that I would love to be a part of a studio audience sometime, and that I’d really love to see Late Night with Jimmy Fallon live in New York.  Andy agreed, and we discussed that maybe when Liam was older, we could go on a trip just the two of us to the city, and try to score seats in the audience.  This was obviously going to be in the future, because we certainly aren’t leaving Liam anytime soon.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago when I was watching the show and Jimmy announced that the show was going on the road for the first time—to the Super Bowl!  Which just so happens to be in Indianapolis this year.  I applied for tickets twelve seconds later, then emailed Andy and told him.  Once we got confirmation that we had been selected for the audience, we asked my parents to come for the day to stay with Liam, and they gladly agreed.  So yesterday we got to have our television experience—and it was awesome.  We had a blast.

The ticket line was supposed to be open from 10-3.  Our paperwork said that just because we had been selected didn’t necessarily mean we were in, because they overbook the show to make sure all seats are filled.  We got to the theater at 10:30, and the line was around the corner and down the street.  We stood in line for an hour and a half to get our seats and the guy at the door said that they were down to their last few hundred seats at that point.  We went back to Andy’s parents house for a bit and hung out, and when we got back to the theater, people were lining up to get in.  We were there at 2:45, and the doors weren’t supposed to open until 3:45.  We had lunch and wandered around a little…sadly, we didn’t make it down the Super Bowl Village…we weren’t sure if we had enough time (we totally did).   They didn’t open the doors until 4:15…and they didn’t have enough metal detectors, so it took forever to get through.  We actually split up…Andy went through the express line (for those with no bags/purses) while I waited in the regular line.  Once we got in, we found out how great are seats were—we were on the aisle in the 9th row center on the main floor. 

Everything about the show was a blast.  There is a guy at the beginning who warms up the audience…he kind of tells you the few things they don’t want you to do, and has everyone practice cheering, and tells a few jokes.  Then the Roots came out and jammed for about 3-5 minutes…then on the monitor we could see Jimmy, and the show started.  They had to shoot last night’s opening twice because Deion Sanders was a bit off the first time.  But he rocked it the second time through.  Jimmy was super nice—he took a few minutes to talk to the audience between one of the segments to say how much he was enjoying Indy and how they loved the theater and it was so much bigger than their regular studio.  When they do things like Head Swap and the subs across America video, they play on the monitor and the audience gets to watch them that way…Jimmy sat at his desk and laughed through parts of them.  When they did the songs about people, he genuinely walked out into the crowd and chose three people at random…which makes me super impressed with Tariq, the singer from the Roots.  I suspect they know what type of music they are going to play…but Tariq totally freestyles the lyrics on the spot.  During that segment, my spazzy face was on camera through the whole first song.

The interviews were a lot of fun…Tracy Morgan talked for about twice as long as was shown.  Tim Tebow stayed out for a while longer too..Jimmy told him he should host SNL.  Then they filmed some promos for the episode to air before the show.  Then it took a little while to set up the studio, but the All American Rejects played, and they were great.  And then it was the end and show was over.  Andy got to give him a high five at the end…he said his hand was softer than Liam’s.  So we were finished, and got to leave and head on home.  It was a total blast.  We weren’t allowed to take pictures inside the theater, and I’m a rule follower, so I didn’t.  But here’s what I did take yesterday.

Our line in the morning…this was when we had about 30 minutes left to wait.

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The huddle waiting to get in before the show and my wristband…you had to have your ticket and your wristband…they strapped the band on you in the morning when you got your tickets.

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