bronwynrh: (Default)
This kid is dedicated. Twice, I've caught him 4 steps up, trying to hurry before I catch him. So for our third child, we finally put up a gate.

He doesn't let that stop him from trying to get into trouble, like reading Siddartha.

Liam likes not the gate. Translation: "Lemme at those stairs!!!"

I've also updated the Summer 2011 album, should you care to peruse...

bronwynrh: (Default)
Every night for the past week has been a blur of awakenings as Liam's first teeth worked their way out. He has nursed constantly. I'm not complaining, mind you. Since we're inseparable, it's just been fantastic bonding time. He's been reaching to be picked up for a couple of weeks, but just this weekend he started to wrap his arms around my neck and squeeze.

OMG baby hugs! *dies*

AND! *drum roll* Liam ate real food yesterday. We had a lovely family dinner of salad, steak, and mashed potatoes, and Samuel declared it the best dinner he'd ever had (yes, he's finally overcome his eating issues). Liam tucked into the mashed potatoes with abandon.

Dixon just came up to me and said, "mommy lift your shirt." He's playing doctor, you see. Now he's checked my ears and handed one of my business cards to me, telling me it's my 'scription. His vocabulary is exploding and he's playing all sorts of imaginary and role-playing games.

Two hours later... we've put the crib in our room so we no longer have to break our backs leaning into the cosleeper. I've got my rocking chair back in there now, too, and the couch has been moved up to the boys' room. Clothes have been sorted and all the 0-3 and 3-6 mos clothing has been listed on ebay. And now I'm editing 6000 words with one hand because Liam is (of course) nursing again.

Busy weekend!

One more, because it's so much fun to watch him eat...

bronwynrh: (Default)
I wish I had time to write more substantially, but it's more important to me to get this written down so I don't forget.

Liam has been scooch-crawling for about a month. He is now crawling with his belly off the floor AND he is starting to cruise. He is ridiculously fast and always has to be in the thick of things. He wants to do everything his brothers do (except eat real food--I still can't get him to eat).

Samuel is just weeks away from autonomous reading. His new teacher is working with him on -at words this week and he doesn't seem to need much reinforcement. He had it the first day and has kept it up all week without forgetting a thing. He's awfully sharp, smart and perceptive. He's also very high-energy. I have to work on my patience, because I wind up yelling too much... He is argumentative and I'm trying to teach him to obey us without arguing ("But I...!" and "I will after I..." and "Not now..."). I don't want to crush his spirit, but he needs to get in the habit of obeying first, discussing later. I see it as a matter of safety more than anything else, because his impulses could get him hurt or he could hurt his brothers.

It's just fascinating, watching him grow and develop. He's a really great kid and he surprises me all the time.

Dixon is also sharp as a tack and very, very sweet. We're trying to encourage him to start pottying, but he's resistant. Ready, but resistant. I've started him at school with Samuel, but only 1 day a week. When I can afford to send him 3 days, I will, but for now I can only do 1 day. He loves the new school (he was not a fan of the old one) and asks me every day if he can go back.

They always cheer when they get to play with MomMom and PopPop, though. They went fishing on Tuesday, and Dixon caught his first fish. They've gone fishing again today :)

From My Little Fishermen
bronwynrh: (Default)
I'm journaling so rarely anymore, I feel badly. Mostly because it means that Liam isn't getting the same written attention that Samuel and Dixon received.

To that end, I should note that Liam began to crawl (a highly efficient scooch) at 6 1/2 months and by 7 months (about a week ago), he started to get the hang of sitting up. He babbles "mamama mmmama" and now is dabbling with "ddduh dduh". He learned how to crawl out of the cosleeper, so Jeff raised the side. Now I have to work to bring him into bed with me. It's not difficult, but it means I wake up more than I'd like to, and Liam wakes me several times a night. He dislikes cereal and isn't eating anything else, really, so it's all mamma-milk, all the time. That's fine, I don't mind, but boy am I tired.

On the TMI front (but I want to record it for myself), I still haven't had a real period. At the beginning of June and the beginning of July, there was a 2-day minimal spotting event, but that was it. After Samuel and Dixon, the Flo-free honeymoon only lasted 3 months and ended with an apocalyptic vengeance. I don't know what's going on this time, but am trying not to look this beautiful gift horse in the mouth. Seventeen months and counting!

Dixon is edging into the defiant stage of being 2 years old. He's added "Oh, man!" and "Oh my goodness!" to his repertoire of regular exclamations ("No, mommy! BAD mommy!"). He is still the sweetest little boy I know. One of our favorite things to do is kiss each other. "More tiss mommy! Tiss here, mommy. Now tiss here!" He also loves to sing the alphabet. Over and over and over... :)

Samuel is maturing so fast that I often forget he's still only 4 years old. This is a strange age, with many insecurities, anxieties, and challenges for him. Overall, he's doing really well, though. Even at his worst he's still a great kid. He's a fan of Mumford & Sons and of Paul Simon, and has asked me to put a couple of albums on his mp3 player. We dance and sing in the car on the way to Pre-K. Of course, "Little Lion Man" is his favorite, so let's just hope he doesn't pick up all the lyrics.

Alright, time to stop rambling for now. See, if I wrote a little every day, I wouldn't have this pileup in my brain. Gotta work on that.

Off to pump!
bronwynrh: (Default)

I wish I'd grabbed the camera sooner, as they were cheering and clapping together shortly before this. And of course, as soon as they see that they're being watched, it's game over :)
bronwynrh: (Default)
In lieu of actual content or intelligent conversation, I bring you a picture post. I've added loads of photos to the Spring 2010 album (it is still Spring, right?), so feast your eyes on hot air balloons, outdoor fun, a few nursing photos for posterity, and a... PUPPY!

Mom and dad brought a a 6 week-old Golden Retriever puppy home this weekend. Her name is Lulu (or WooWoo, if you're Samuel, or "squeal!!" if you're Dixon).

Spring 2010

And... two movies.

bronwynrh: (Default)
Back at work (*sob*) after a wonderful four-day weekend with my family.

We hosted Thanksgiving, as usual, and between my parents and myself, we put up a pretty good spread. The unfortunate part is that I work for a day and half for about three and a half hours' worth of entertaining. Half of my guests leave early for celebrations at another household, and the other half just don't stick around.

When I was growing up, Thanksgiving started in the early afternoon and continued late into the evening. I miss that, although I realize much of it was borne of the fact that we lived overseas and everyone was seeking a replacement for the family celebrations of home. Still, I imagine that other families have daylong affairs, so I'm not sure why we don't.

On Friday, I went shopping. Yes, shopping. I've always sworn off Black Friday shopping, but this Friday morning saw me journeying with my mother to a carpet center where we met the contractor who's going to be fixing the water damage in Samuel's room. I didn't count that as shopping, especially since we were the only people in the closed-to-the-public warehouse. On the way home, though, mom suggested we go ahead and visit the mall. My Christmas gift this year was to be a new suit and, mom figured, we so rarely have the opportunity to be out together and kid-free. We're also very good at shopping by surgical strike, so we reasoned that any mobs would be easily navigated.

We were right. With a couple of side-jaunts, mom and I successfully completed our mission, and then some. We discovered Soma, a Chico's offshoot and beautiful alternative to Victoria's Secret. They have a camisole bra and a 10-way sweater wrap that I covet. We took notes, and moved on toward Ann Taylor. I now have a beautiful suit (thanks mom and dad!) and treated myself to a new pair of shoes, a sweater that will be perfect for work, and a lovely top, all thanks to Ann Taylor's 40% off sale. On our way out, we dove into Macy's so I could buy a much-needed full slip and trouser slip, and then headed up one more level to peek at the Tools of The Trade cookware.

Jeff and I have been fed up with our non-stick cookware for a couple of years now, worrying about what sort of chemical gunk is leaching from the coating into our food. We'd determined that our Christmas present to ourselves this year would be a new set of pots and pans. My parents have used and loved their Tools of the Trade for more than 20 years, and I was curious to see what was available.

Oh my goodness! Macy's was selling their Tools of the Trade for almost 50% off! And even at full price, the brand is far more affordable than the other top brands. The sets we had been looking at were running around $400, and the additional pieces were all $100 or more. The Tools set was only $129, and the additional pieces (some in sets of two) were all under $50 - most of them under $30. I squealed with joy at the thought of how much more palatable this major purchase had just become.

So a Black Friday trip to choose carpet turned into a major coup of shopping success.

Open our kitchen cabinets and they *gleam* with stainless steal beauty. The dinged and scratched coated cookware is huddled in a corner, awaiting an uncertain fate.

Perhaps I gush a bit much, but maybe I needed the retail therapy.

We invited my parents upstairs for a fondue dinner on Saturday night, with the Ramey family traditional beef fondue and a killer cheese fondue. SO. YUMMY.

Sunday was spent in quieter family pursuits. Dixon and I hung out at home and I knitted while Jeff and Samuel went to visit my MIL and FIL.

Dixon's sweater is a little more than half-way finished, and my fingers are itching to get back to it. Dang job is getting in the way of my domesticity.

So that's my brain-dump. Work is extraordinarily busy; my coworker and I both feel that we have two full-time jobs each. I just hope that all this work pays off.

And with that, I leave you with a photographic collection from the holiday.
bronwynrh: (Boys)
I've been busy. Actually, I've been sick, which means I've been too exhausted and snotty to be very productive these past few weeks. My knitting has languished, my pile of sewing projects spread across the tables, and the guilt huddles in my mind, waiting for any opportunity to make me feel like an unaccomplished loser.

I do have one freelance job completed, so that's something. I should get another assignment next week... with one or two more jobs this month, I should earn a nice little pocket full of Jeff's 40th Birthday Present money. I've made a couple of Lizzypops sales, too, and hope to grab some momentum, there.

I have projects in progress for myself, Jeff and Dixon, but feel guilty working on them because they won't make any money. Then I feel guilty if I focus on Lizzypops stuff, because it may just all be a colossal waste of time. So I wind up doing nothing at all, which does wonders for the self-esteem, let me tell you.

Let's see... Ah, October in Pictures! The boys were fun this month. They're becoming closer, having fun and being affectionate with each other, although Samuel still feels very jealous of Dixon and often steals toys or squeezes between us and the baby, pushing Dixon away. He's learning, but it's taking some time. When they're not competing for toys or attention, they set each other off into choruses of squeals, screeches and giggles, and play extended games of Monkey See, Monkey Do. Last night, they were executing tandem Downward Dog poses with their heads butted up against each other on the floor. Then they'd rise up on their toes and roll over their heads, over each other, giggling like little madmen. I'll be sure to have the camera ready for video, tonight.

October 2009


And now... I dare you to go to YouTube and search for "world's biggest zit". I double dog dare you. Don't make me suffer the traumatic aftereffects alone, but don't blame me if you're foolish enough to take the dare.
bronwynrh: (Default)
It feels good to have another project completed. This one, a quilt for a co-worker's daughter. The cute-as-a-button Bitzer is three weeks older than Dixon.

Other goings on... )

Picture time! )
bronwynrh: (Default)
Samuel is feeling much better today. Next time, I'll wait 24 hours on a fever before spending the money on a doctor's visit. He's back to his old self, running circles around the house and bapping his brother on the head.

Dixon's second surgery is scheduled for tomorrow morning at 7:30. If you have any mojo to spare in the morning, please send a little bit his way. He'll be fine, I know, but I worry that this time he may feel afraid.

In other news, I just had an epiphany. At my dental cleaning last week, the hygienist discovered that the enamel had disappeared from the back of my lower incisors. I'm scheduled for a little shellacking on Monday, when I get my NTI. The hygienist asked me what had changed in my diet... was I eating lemons? She and I couldn't figure it out. About 10 minutes ago, it finally hit me. I've been suffering heartburn for almost three years now, between two pregnancies and my medicine. All that acid has been sitting in a nice little pool in the bottom of my mouth. My enamel didn't stand a chance.
So much for my formerly perfect (albeit crooked) teeth. Dammit.

I've got to get the heartburn under control. First my teeth, next will be esophageal cancer.

Early to bed tonight, since we have to be up by 5 and out the door by 5:30.
bronwynrh: (Default)
Had a fun evening with Samuel and Dixon on Friday evening, just me and the weejuns. Saturday, Jeff and Mog (Sam's name for my MIL) took Samuel along on a trip to Thieneman's nursery for some plant shopping. After a nap, we took the boys over to Mog and MogDaddy's house for a little pool party.

Samuel and Dixon Go Swimming

Home again, home again, jiggety jig, for a Sunday filled with running in mad circles around the house interrupted by a shopping trip with Mommy and MomMom and, of course, a nap.

There were giggles galore from Mr. Dixon and loads of energy and verbosity from Mr. Samuel.

Today, poor Mr. Samuel came down with a fever. *sigh*
Poor kid was completely deflated. It was all he could do to flop on his fish pillow on the floor and watch Sesame Street with Dixon and PopPop.

I met him and PopPop at the doctor's office after work. The Strep swab came back negative, so this is just an "observe and treat the fever as we wish" illness. Unless it doesn't get better in a couple of days.

It will, though.

Just figures that this means Samuel will miss the first day of preschool at Miss Kelly's house. And he was looking forward to it, too.

It's about an hour away from Motrin time, so I'm going to go up to wake the Young Master to check on him and see if I can't convince him to eat something. He asked to be stripped to his diaper and put to bed as soon as we got home, and he's been asleep since then. I've heard him chatter a few times, but he never called to me.

Anyway, off to snuggle Mr. Sam.
bronwynrh: (Boys)

And we know he's ticklish.

bronwynrh: (24)
In big faded red letters, the sign reads:

To yet another cell-phone obsessed Potentia employee, this means

Did you know that? I didn't know that.

The *wooshwooshwoosh* didn't tip him off, the several throat-clearings didn't tip him off. The sound of bottles being capped and hoses being un-hosed didn't tip him off, either. Nor did the sound of my bag being zipped.

I came around the screen, boob attachments in hand, to find him - no kidding - six inches away from the screen looking at the DO NOT DISTURB sign. I scowled at him and flipped the sign back over the screen, then slammed the door.

Now there's a new sign with bright red lettering:

Last month, the building security guard peeked around the screen. And he knows me and knows what I do back there. I don't know what got into him, but he felt terrible about it. I refuse to acknowledge the building manager, who has peeked back there twice, and who helpfully (and on several occasions) suggested that my sign should read


And there was of course the other Potentia employee who peeked back there when I was still pumping for Samuel. He, too, was on the phone, and was so kind as to give a running commentary as he observed the screen and the sign.

In the spring, I lost a $20 bill in the hallway in front of our laboratory door. I went to the security guard to ask if anyone had turned in the $20 I lost, and explained that I had it in my pocket to buy milkshakes for myself and my then-in-hospital mother. The guard had found it and asked around. One of the Potentia employees had claimed it as his own. The guard was angry that someone had lied to him, confronted the guy, and got my $20 back.

I don't know what's wrong with these people...

In other news, Dixon is a big fan of eating and standing up. See?


I don't mean to neglect Samuel, but the videos I have are still stuck on the camera. He's learning how to say "bicycle" - or, "bi-glglglglglglgle", to hear him tell it. He's picking up all sorts of 4- and even 5-word phrases, like, "Hi Julie, let's play!" and, "Baby Dixon go night night". We have to work hard to understand him, but he's improving. His vocabulary is exploding and his counting and letter-recognition skills are great. I'm just so proud of him and the progress he's making every day.

bronwynrh: (Smiling Sam)
Samuel and PopPop went fishing again today, and my little angler is starting to get the hang of things. I can ask him, "did you and PopPop go fishing today?" And he'll say, "Yes!" "Did you catch a fish?" "Yes!" "How big was it?" "Big big!" He cries, flinging his arms out to the sides.

He's brave enough to touch the fish now, and PopPop tells me that Samuel pats them before throwing them back in the water. What a sweetie.


I can't wait to get home and talk to him about how big his catch was today!

bronwynrh: (Default)
The Darling Dixon loves me so much, he feels he must awaken at 11, midnight, 3:30 and 6, just to be with me. Every night, it's some variation of this routine, although the midnight and 3:30 wakeups are sometimes moved to 1 and 4.

This makes mommy very, very tired.  It's hard to be angry, though, when the cause of my great sleep debt (shall we call it a toxic asset?) is so heart breakingly cute. See?

I cannot resist a baby in blue jeans. I almost took a photo of him crawling, just to have a shot of that adorable little blue-jean'd bottom.  Nine months old, 22.5 lbs, two teeth. He's trying to stand up, holding on to any vertical surface he comes across.  Alas, this means he has something of a perma-bruise on his forehead.  He doesn't give up, though!

And then there's Samuel, who has become Little Mr. Chatterbox.  Babble, babble babble, all the time.  Bedtime is 8 o'clock, but I listen to his chatter until 9:15 almost every evening.  He understands now that objects and people have names, and is doing very well with labelling.  He still loves his alphabet, and will spend a good while reading to himself or spelling aloud.  The best advancement for him lately, though, is 2- and 3-word sentences.  The bad news is, when I'm around, his topic of choice is often "boobies".  Yesterday morning, he said, "mama boobie Dix mik!"  "Mommy's boobies make milk for Dixon?" I asked for clarification. "Yes!"  He replied with an emphatic nod.  He's a nutty, button-pushing two year-old, but Samuel is also bright, energetic and a very sweet little boy, with a great sense of humor and a musical laugh.  Like the haircut? I think I'm getting the hang of it.

bronwynrh: (Dixon smiles)
Here 'tis...

Getting there!

Also, a few (ok, too many) Dixon pics in hier )
bronwynrh: (Default)
My son asked for popcorn for dinner. By name, he asked for popcorn. When pressed, he emphatically reiterated his request, complete with full-body nodding.

I, terrible mother that I am, acquiesced. Hey, it's fresh popped on the stove, with olive oil. And, people, he asked for it by using a WORD.

He ate the guts from a piece of crusty bread, a few handfuls of popcorn, and sucked down a glass of grape juice. The kid just has no appetite. I fail to see how he manages to survive, but the pediatrician and First Steps folks unanimously insist that he's fine, perfectly normal, nothing to worry about, Mizz Hartung.

Meanwhile, young SumoSon will eat an entire banana and then wash it all down with a 20 minute nursing session. And if you offered him some Cheerios, he'll take those, too, thank you very much.

Now they're sitting on the floor at my feet, watching Ni-hao, Kai-lan and passing a puffy book back and forth between them.

Mom tells me the kids love World... let's pull it up and see... Yep, rumor confirmed. Dixon is rocking back and forth, and Samuel climbed up into my lap to watch and replay ... and replay ... and replay.

And look! Now he's eating an apple and more popcorn. Just another Monday night in Paradise.
bronwynrh: (Smiling Sam)
I'm a stair counter. Always have been. Our homes in Saudi Arabia had 15 steps, and I confirmed this fact every time I climbed or descended them.

I am still a stair counter, and have been counting our 18 steps with Samuel nearly every day for a year and half. Yesterday morning, I asked him to count with me and he counted up to ten. TEN! And here I thought he could only count to five.

So now I'm doubly impressed :)
bronwynrh: (Boys)
I need to take a moment
Read more... )

Alright, well I feel better now. Back to work!

bronwynrh: (Skeptical)
PopPop took Samuel fishing at one of the city parks today and - happiness! - they caught a catfish. PopPop was pleased as punch, and so was Samuel... so long as the fish stayed beyond arm's reach. Heh. Now mommy has a new Skeptical icon.

If you're wondering, yes they let the fish go. Dad said he could have been a keeper, but catch and release was good enough for today.


bronwynrh: (Default)

February 2012

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