Monthly Archives: August 2009

Parents Night Out!

Mike and I celebrated our 3rd anniversary last night by staying at The Standard above the High Line. It was truly, truly awesome.

Pictures (non-scandalous) to follow.

The widge had her first sleepover at grandma’s and the rumor has it she was an excellent baby- taking a bottle like a champ, getting to bed on time and generally not giving my mom any trouble.

I, on the other hand, forgot to bring my breast pump and thus spent the night trying to sleep on my back with a bath towel stuffed up my shirt while my breasts swelled to watermelon-like proportions. It was so painful that Mike even suggested we go get the baby. It was the middle of the night and I figured it would just go away. Wrong! I woke up with half the bath towel soaked and my upper body so immobilized I had to have Mike pull one of my arms across my chest just so I could turn to face him in bed. I was still set on ordering breakfast so we did that and then promptly checked out.

I couldn’t wear a bra so I just put my t shirt on backwards and held my straw hat in front of my shirt as I felt it again begin to soak through as the cute concierge guy asked me if there was anything I could think of that would have improved my stay. “Um… maybe… a towel bar?” We chit-chatted about that for a while but I really needed to get back to Virginia and thankfully she was only 3 blocks away and very willing to help me out.

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From boob to bottle

As we prepare to send the nuggie off into the world (daycare), we’ve embarked on a daily bottle regimen that is met with varying degrees of success.

We’ve tried the following:

Philips Avent infant bottles with size 1 and 2 nipples.

She has successfully hollered at these, but she has also literally just HOLLERED at these- so I’ll say I do not have enough data to give a fair assessment.

Born Free 5oz BPA-free bottles

Born Free 5oz BPA-free bottles


We’ve used these with mixed results. She took one pretty easily at my mom’s place during the day, but later that evening when Mike tried to give her a bottle she pitched such a fit that Mike called me in – not wanting the nug to form negative associations with bottle-feeding. They have this anti-colic doohickey that fits between bottle and nipple to reduce gas but thankfully the nug doesn’t seem to have a problem with that. So either it’s working, or she is, as we suspect, a perfect child in every way.

ThinkBaby 9oz bottle

ThinkBaby 9oz bottle


The Thinkbaby bottles I got from Giggle didn’t announce what size the nipples they come with are but they seem like a ‘1.’ Whatever size it is – she seems to take to this bottle really well. (We just tried it for the first time about 30 minutes ago)
and finally…
Adiri natural nurser

Adiri natural nurser


The Adiri bottle is obviously designed to be very boob-like so I bought one in the stage 2 size (3+ months) to use when she gets a bit bigger and she is taking bottles from daddy more often. The nipple is built in and the bottle is filled from the bottom, which is where the ‘petal vent’ is located. It’s a very cool design with a rubberized body for easy gripping. Will Virginia love it like she loves my very own bosom? I’ll have to let you know.

What does seem to increase the likelihood of a successful bottle sesh is the time of day (afternoons seem best, before the nug goes into her nightfuss phase) and her position. We’ve found that cradling her in one’s arms, close to the chest, just like breastfeeding – works best. The other key is to center the nipple in her mouth and hold it in proper sucking position even if she’s crying so that when she finally gives in and clamps down, all she has to do is suck and boom- she’s eating.

How am I getting this motherly nectar into these various bottles? Via the Lansinoh double electric breast pump- which I highly recommend!

My only tips are: Don’t pump both breasts at once even though you can. It makes you laugh too hard. (It also made me feel ‘crazy’ the first time I did it. I can’t really explain…but I sorta felt like Helen Hunt in that TV movie about the dangers of PCP) And do watch the accompanying DVD – it’s a scream.

As much of a lifesaver as the pump is – a baby drinks about 40+ ounces a DAY, yo! That’s like, well, a 40.

So in anticipation of my possibly not being able to pump enough to satisfy her Paul Bunyan-esque hunger when she is at daycare, we’ve started mixing ‘half&half’ bottles with equal parts breast milk and Similac Advance. No ill effects!

Here’s to continuing to excel at parenting at 2.5 months! The next challenge: baby’s first vaccines on Thursday. sad face.

Practice

If you are currently pregnant, I suggest buying a live catfish at the supermarket, taking it home, and putting clothes on it.

Man! Sometimes baby arms confound me. Obviously I don’t want to force them to bend but I would also like to get Virginia dressed before she outgrows the shirt I’m trying to put her in. Sometimes she just goes totally rigid and laughs at me or will grab at the fabric with her superhuman claws halfway through a sleeve and hide there.

Still, fall is coming and the nuggie looks so cute in long sleeves.

Here are a few that I really love:

Indian Village Blue from Ittikid

'Indian Village Blue' from Ittikid

Boatneck tee at Flora and Henri

Boatneck tee at Flora and Henri

Emil Smock shirt from Dagmar Daley at Sweet William

Little Houses dress at Sweet William

Knitted cardigan from Pure Baby (at Finns Finds)

Knitted cardigan from Pure Baby (at Finn's Finds)

Troizenfants Khaki Cotton Spot Dress at The Emperor's New Clothes

Troizenfants Khaki Cotton Spot Dress at The Emperor's New Clothes

Pink Chicken - Sage Bird and Grapevine Dress at Oliebollen

Pink Chicken - Sage Bird and Grapevine Dress at Oliebollen

Claesens Spring Flowers onesie at Oliebollen

Claesen's Spring Flowers onesie at Oliebollen

World Class Traveler

The nuggie is back from her first trip to Canada where she was a well-behaved delight from take-off to landing and beyond. (She slept through the take-off and nursed through the landing of our flight in)

Mike’s brother David and his daughter Emma picked us up at the City Centre airport Wednesday night and drove out to Scarborough, where Mike doth hail from. Mike’s mum was very eager to meet her grandbaby so we sat up for a while before preparing our family bed for the night. All that being perfect must have worn Virginia out because she slept for 7 hours that night!

the first thing the widge likes to do each morning is put her hands behind her head, arch her back and scrunch up her face for a massive stretch

the first thing the widge likes to do each morning is put her hands behind her head, arch her back and scrunch up her face for a massive stretch


The next day, Grandma Lynne had 5 of her girlfriends over to celebrate the arrival of the little widge, who impressed everyone with her vocal skills, facial expression wardrobe, and sheer bulk. There was even a cake with her name on it! (Speaking of her name- I read somewhere that babies begin to recognize their names at 6 weeks so I’ve been making an effort to call her ‘Virginia’ at least half the time so that she doesn’t think her name is Widgie or Nuggie or The Nugball or Widgerd)


Grandma had a cold when we arrived and wore this mask so V wouldnt get sick

Grandma had a cold when we arrived and wore this mask so V wouldn't get sick


Thursday night, we took V out to Ajax to meet Mike’s dad. His girlfriend made a totally delicious dinner and we ate outside as the sun went down. It was nice to be near grass and plants after a long summer in the concrete jungle.
Extreme surprise

Extreme surprise


On Friday I was eager to head downtown as I had not been to Toronto in over a year and wanted to see my friends and check out what had changed in the city where I “came of age.” (Not to be confused with the city where I “became a woman” which was Philly – oddly enough.) Anyway, it was a beautiful day, if a bit chilly, and after walking from Union Station and all along Queen Street, with a stop in Trinity Bellwoods park to feed and change the nugbug, we called our friend Cheryl to come meet us on the patio of the Beaconsfield.

The Gillespie Bros were also available for beer consumption.

Dave and Ray

Dave and Ray



Cheryl went to Kolkid and got V one of those super cute Sophie the Giraffe teethers.

I had seen them before in pictures but didn’t realize that because of their natural rubber and food paint composition, they are completely safe to gnaw on.

Saturday, Mike’s aunt came over and met the babe and we all went down to the pool. Mike was brave enough to go in after reports of the water being totally freezing. I was not and used having to “hold the baby” as an excuse. The lifeguard was a young guy with a tan and a classic lifeguard body who was a real sport about the constant requests from little girls wanting to be thrown in the pool. Lynne wanted Emma to stop bugging the lifeguard, so she started bugging Uncle Mike to throw her in instead. This worked well the first time but the second was a big old belly flop. As soon as Mike heard her hit the water he knew she would come up crying. Aaaaand she did. Whoops. Mike felt TERRIBLE.


After the flop of shame, Mike and I took Virginia back downtown and hung out at Cheryl’s place, then Rick’s house and grabbed some dinner at Tacos el Asador on Bloor. Yum!

Sunday was the tree-planting Mike organized for all our friends. We were pretty upset when by 11am the rain was coming down hard with no end in sight. Mike went over to the spot early to dig a hole and get the tree mostly planted before coming back to the house to pick up Virginia and I to take us to the park. Miracle of miracles, the sun came out and everything was beautiful between 2 and 6 — the exact timeframe of our get together.

Ali holds Virginia

Ali holds Virginia


Allana brought these amazing burger cupcakes

Allana brought these amazing burger cupcakes


Jelena and Zoe share some dirt

Jelena and Zoe share some dirt


Mike and the Mighty Oak!

Mike and the Mighty Oak!


Ray and his babies

Ray and his babies


It was a beautiful celebration and we’re so glad everyone came out to join us and share in something so permanent and special.

From there we hustled to the airport to make our 8:30 flight. We relaxed in the Porter lounge as our flight got delayed and delayed and ultimately cancelled. Oops. I called Sebastien and asked if he might enjoy a sleepover with a young girl and he was up for it, so back from the airport we went, and Seb took us in and gave us PBRs and his bed for the night. Our hero!

Virginia and Cola

Virginia and Cola


The next morning we enjoyed breakfast in Parkdale and then parted ways; with Mike and I on a pilgrimage to Mike’s favorite bookstore, The Monkey’s Paw (closed on Mondays!!) and me; on a pilgrimage to find some coconut water. Fail. It was hot, hot, hot and the nuggie slept in her stroller in “power save mode” for HOURS! Before long it was time to head back to the airport…

The flight home was uneventful and we went straight to my moms to return the Maclaren and relax. Mike took the luggage home and the ladies enjoyed an ole fashion American sleepover- no boys allowed.

Ideal Bookshelf

I saw this great piece linked on DaddyTypes and had to do a post about it as well.

From the artist, Jane Mount:
For a while, I’ve been documenting people’s bookshelves as a form of portraiture; you can actually learn a lot about folks by their books’ covers. Now, I’m working on a series of “ideal” bookshelves: sets of favorites—mine or someone else’s—amalgamated in a picture, even if they don’t usually live on shelves anywhere near each other.

Virginia has many of these books already but its awesome to see what Jane has chosen and how she’s grouped them. I’m one of those people who spends a lot of time looking at book spines in my own house (we have one of those book towers from DWR) and trying to form a generalized opinion of me (and Mike) based on the collection. As in, would I think these people were cool? Pretentious? Warmongers? Hippies? I do the same thing at other peoples’ houses too but 1. I’m not in other folks’ homes lately. 2. Nobody reads anymore.

Anyway, the print is available in 11×14″ for $50 and 16×20″ for $200 and will serve as a reminder to your child that reading is FUNdamental!

Bon Voyage!

We’re off to Canada tonight! Nuggie’s first plane trip / first border crossing / first indirect experience of Tim Horton’s Canadian Maple donut as absorbed through breast milk.

See you in a few days!!

Hijkids

Cookie cutters should be reserved for cutting cookies! Hijkids is an awesome site where designers who handcraft quality clothing, toys and accessories for children can showcase their (often) one-of-a-kind wares.

Below are some of my favorites…

Esme Top in Hearts by Black Rabbit

Esme Top in Hearts by Black Rabbit


Neighbors Skirt by Plainly Jane

Neighbors Skirt by Plainly Jane


Heidi Dress in Pink Dots by Black Rabbit

Heidi Dress in Pink Dots by Black Rabbit


Tiered Sailor Dress by Mellow

Tiered Sailor Dress by Mellow


Sleepy Smiley Lion Patchwork Pillow by Twiglet

Sleepy Smiley Lion Patchwork Pillow by Twiglet

Check ’em out!