Archive for August, 2007

Is this why they say parenting is like riding a roller coaster?

August 31, 2007

So, did he read this? Because yesterday Dream Boy came to the table instead of Monster Boy. After I picked him up from his care yesterday we swam, we played, we read new library books. He hugged me and Henry when we picked him up and told us he missed us, he didn’t fuss at dinner, he didn’t snatch any toys from his brother, he voluntarily brushed his teeth and he went to bed with a smile and a kiss.

So thank you, Internet parents, I think you straightened him right out. At least for a day. But seriously, thank you all so much for your kind advice. I have taken all of your thoughtful, supportive and humorous comments to heart, and I so appreciate you taking the time to write. So Christina and Maya, I will keep notes for your someday tantrum throwers, to my sister and Ashlea and Sheri at My Minivan is Faster Than Yours, thank you for making me LAUGH and Summer at MommyBabble, thanks for the martini suggestion. At breakfast. Not a bad thought.

And the rest of you, like Karen and Stacy and Mike, for simply just letting me know I’m not alone, it really helps! And most of all to Arizaphale for her always warm and thoughtful words, and sage advice about food! I stuffed a cheese stick and two fig newtons into him as soon as I picked him up yesterday, and I am sure that helped, too. Here’s wishing you all a tantrum free day.


And because it wouldn’t be a post without photos, here are some from the darling diva’s birthday party last week. I love summer birthdays!


Yum, summer birthday cake.


The birthday girl.


She wasn’t the only one enjoying cake!


Will waiting anxiously for his slice of cake.


Boys on the bench.


The birthday bathing beauty.


Slip slidin’ away.


And Theo, who had a birthday earlier in the month, and I promise his photos are next!

For the whole set, click here.


Advice wanted. PLEASE.

August 29, 2007

More experienced parents than me, tell me: do three-year-olds have a special intensity to their tantrums? And if so, for how long does this last? And has anyone come across a preschooler loaner program, where, say, I loan you my son? No charge?

For the last few days, Will’s tired, melting down stage has intensified like the the heat of a thousand white-hot suns in direct proportion to the ridiculousness of the issue. Tears of rage and futility ensue when one of us

…pours water in the wrong cup!

…pours water instead of milk!

…suggests that he drink anything at all!



It’s almost funny, because he is being SO outrageous and contrary. I keep my sanity by imagining the answers I would give him in an alternate reality:

Oh, sure, honey. Let me give you this big grownup knife to spread jelly on your toast. It’s called a cleaver, can you say that? Here you go, I sharpened it just for you.

Oh, you want to stay dirty? (True quote, delivered in the tub tonight.) I’m so sorry. Let me go outside, get some dirt and we can just spread it all over you to make sure you are as dirty as you want to be. Back in a sec, sweetie!

Followed by, oh, you want to stay wet, of course! (Also true quote from tonight, delivered by lying on the floor naked, wailing in protest from the TOWEL.) Let me just get a cup of water here, and toss it all over you—all better, you’re nice and wet now!

My goodness, I am just a horse’s ass. OF COURSE you want to get into the tub first even though you spent five minutes caterwauling on the floor about something while we got your brother undressed and into the tub. Let me just take your (cheery) 14-month-old brother out of the tub for a second and put him down, dripping wet, on the mat so that I can then put you in, then put him back in so you can say you were first. No problem, sweetie pie!

In the immortal words of Dana Carvey, you can see where that might go. Advice and headache remedies welcome. Bring it on.


Thursday’s Theme at Picture This is pretty, and as the mother of two boys I was looking at some of my more girly photo subjects, then I remembered this one.

It would look great with painted toenails, don’t you think?



For more pretty photos go see Tracey at Picture This!

How to charm me

August 28, 2007

Tell me for the eighty-billionth time how much you love my painted toenails.

Will: Mommy?

Me: Yes?

Will: I love your toenails. A LOT.

Me: Thank you, sweetie!

Will: Someday I will have pink toenails, too. When I am a big man. And a daddy.

Tommy in the grass

August 27, 2007


Baby Tommy examining my lawn for crab grass. He didn’t have to search too hard.

We had a great visit from Tommy and his mommy last week, and took a few snaps of the handsome six-month-old fella while he explored the wonders of GRASS! It is nothing short of a miracle that we have ANY photos showing his eyes, because he COULD NOT take his head and hands out of the grass. So for photos showing his WHOLE sweet face, click here, but I loved this one so much (the focus on the grass! the intensity! the little hands! the sweet baby drool!) that I am posting this one as my Best Shot Monday. Head on over to Picture This for more Best Shot Monday.

And…Tommy? Have I got the girl for you! In fact, she is so perfect for you we should make sure you aren’t related before you go on a date, because your families have an awful lot in common.


Meet sweet pea Erin, daughter of Mike.


And Tommy? Don’t you go breaking her heart or you’ll have to answer to big brother Aidan!

(More Erin and Aidan here.)

Sorry about that

August 27, 2007

I think some of you were perplexed with the shoe post to begin with (where are the funny mommy stories? And the kid photos? And the mohair willy warmers?) and then I threw you for an extra loop by leaving it up there for DAYS, the SHAME! Though I was pleased to see my cousin (blogs make the world go round…) comment on Molly’s fantastic fashion post, and since my cousin (stars! and stripes! and bell-bottom pants! hooray!) had about the most awesome fashion mistake on the list, it is all worthwhile.

But anyway. I have one second left of posting time before I run out the door, so I will update later with my Best Shot Monday and who knows what other goodness. Oh and guess what, I got my own care package of THESE this weekend, oh bliss. Thank you, Lorraine, who read about them right here!

The new shoe review

August 24, 2007

Well, I have about a zillion more kid photos to post (its kind of like finding overdue library books under your couch and then returning them—such a good feeling!), but since not every since one of my readers wants to see nothing but kid photos here, and I have about 30 seconds to write a post today, I will instead share with you today the comic brilliance of my favorite shoeru, Molly.

I excerpt my favorites from Molly’s picks here, along with her hilarious commentary. (Thanks for the post material today, Molly!)

What happens when you add a strap to a kayak:

This is the perfect disguise for puffy pregnancy ankles. Because it’s much better to look like a python is swallowing you whole.


Hurt your foot? No problem! It’s a shoe and an ankle brace in one!


Dear Mom and Dad, today at summer camp I made a Native American Dreamcatcher in the arts and crafts shed. My counselor said it was looking a little boring, so I added some yarn from the scrap bucket. I hope you like it!


You know those woven plastic/rubbery lawn chairs that you accidentally leave outside all year, causing their shiny whiteness to turn gray? I turned mine into a shoe for you.


And while you are visiting Molly? Share YOUR all time worst fashion moment ever, and see what fashion atrocities her readers are confessing to in the comments. And I thought an OP half shirt with a Bermuda bag was bad.

We’ll be back with cute kids tomorrow. Have a good day. Now where did I put my dream catcher shoes?

The divine Miss M

August 23, 2007


Isn’t she divine? And SO FUN to shoot a girl! Henry and Will’s pal Martha is two years old today, which seemed like a great day to post this photo of her. Plus Thursday’s Theme at Picture This is FADE, with a request to bring some vivid color into the fading days of summer. I think she took care of that, don’t you? Happy birthday, Martha!

And P.S. for all those concerned about my daily dairy intake—I had a GIANT birthday ice cream pie in front of me last night. YUM.

And P.P.S. for the photo types out there:

I’m curious, what are you shooting with right now, and what will your next camera and/or lens be? I’m using the very first Canon Digital Rebel (I know!), and mostly shooting with a Canon 85 mm f/1.8 or a Tamron 28-75 f/2.8.

My next camera? Maybe a Canon 30D if the prices drop now that the Canon 40D was just launched, or if a WHOLE LOT of people, like, my entire town, want to hire me for their Christmas cards this year, then I would get the full-frame goodness that is the Canon 5D.

Can you imagine! Wheeee! What’s your dream camera? Your dream lens?

Anatomy of a “struction” cake

August 22, 2007


Well, now that Will’s third birthday is a month behind us, it seems like a good time to haul out his birthday photos. And I thought I would be so together with this electronic version of a family photo album, sigh.

And yes, I know haven’t done Henry’s one-year slide show yet, I was thinking I ought to wait until he is old enough to enjoy it. Like 18 or so. (No, I’m halfway done, coming soon, really.)

But anyway, we marked Will’s third birthday with not one but two celebrations (one on his actual day, and one a week later with a group of friends). And when you are three, two birthday celebrations means two cakes, which means mommy got a chance to hone her skills on the “struction zone” cake. Who knows, I may have launched a new cottage industry—Construction Cakes ‘R Us. Now taking your orders!

So birthday celebration #1 was at a local pizza place, and the cake consisted of an actual cake with a lumpy mountain appended to it. This was simply blocks of dark chocolate cake, glued together with chocolate buttercream frosting (this was four days into my return to dairy, so yes, this cake was as much for mom as it was for Will!) and sprinkled with “dirt” made from pulverized chocolate and vanilla oreos, for that proper sandy soil appearance. The whole thing was studded with gummy worms (you know, worms, in the the dirt) and what Will referred to as chocolate meatballs—malted milk balls for that faux boulder look.


Cake # 1


Cool photo, eh? Taken at the pizza place by my husband.


The cake seemed to be a success.

Cake number #2 evolved out of my free-form cake constructing period, and consisted of heaped up, crumbled up chocolate cake, chocolate pudding and more of the pulverized Oreos, plus, of course, the worms and meatball/boulders—a literal pile of edible dirt. I actually preferred #2, and the pudding was a delectable addition as well as an excellent mortar for the cake materials.


Cake #2—a pile of dirt, or as Will dubbed it, a “struction zone!”


Henry and his therapist are going to love this photo someday. “You feel marginalized? Tell me why, Henry.”


It’s all about the gummy worms.


Made any creative cakes at your house? Or have you found any great homemade photos on the Web? Post your links in the comments section, I love seeing creative cakes! Mmmm… I think I’m off to find some chocolate cake—and I’m allowed, it’s MY birthday today!


THIS happened yesterday, so I got to eat THESE today. YUM! Be still my chocolate-loving heart!

Baby blue eyes

August 21, 2007

Well, I promised you lots of kid photos this week, here’s a start! This blue-eyed sweetie is Sydney, who just turned one of the most delicious baby ages, six months old. You know what I mean, they can laugh and play, but they can’t yet GO ANYWHERE? I think there is a flaw in the system that this wonderful infant stage is so fleeting.



Happy six months, Sydney! For the whole set, click here.

Lollipop, lollipop and free stuff results

August 20, 2007

Few things are as great as the anticipation:


Except a lollipop when you are three.


For more Best Shot Monday, head on over to Picture This!


Lots and lots of photos to come this week—maybe I’ll get Will’s birthday photos up before his “second birthday,” that being the next possible occasion he can imagine for him to get a visit to the toy store, since NEXT birthday sounds just TOO far away. And I’ve got all kinds of beautiful babies to show you, too, so stay tuned for more this week.

And the winner of the Little Floatie girls swimsuit from Land’s End is… Cari, mother of Luna & Foo—hope little Luna will enjoy it!

And finally, thanks to Melissa at Enjoying Life for her kind words and for bestowing upon me the “Nice Matters” award–wasn’t that NICE of her?  Go check out the photos of all the kiddies in her life–she is Auntie Missa to seven nieces and nephews!

Just a little piece of housekeeping

August 17, 2007

Sorry, verrrrry boring Friday post here, but just a little tip for my email readers, being those people who subscribe to Hank & Willie via email, which you do by going to Hank & Willie, and clicking on the link in the upper right column.

Did you know that if you click on headline of the day’s entry when it arrives in your inbox, you’ll get the actual LIVE Hank & Willie Web page? With comments? And a blogroll of interesting blogs on the side? And free chocolate? (Well, if I could figure out a way to do that I would, you know. But I will post a permanent link to the brownie recipe if you like.)

Because I know when you get the page in your email box, it doesn’t show you the whole wide world of comments. And since only one of my email subscribers is a commenter, I wonder if any of the others even know about comments. And I do love the comments, you know. And evidently I like to write the word comments, too.

And since this is SO BORING that your eyes are falling out of your head and rolling down your face (okay, not so boring any more, not with that imagery, eh?), I leave you with this little gem:

Will: “Mommy?”

Me: “Yes?”

Will: “I just love my Henry.”

I’m typing really, really quietly so he can’t hear me

August 16, 2007

When people say to me, “Oh how do you ever find the time to blog?” I never really understand what they mean, because it really doesn’t take much time at all. And besides, have you seen my house? It’s not like the other hours of my day are spent cleaning it. At least if I do this I will have accomplished something.

But today, I really, really was finding it impossible to find the time to update (or do any of the work I brought home to do), since Henry has decided the cure for strep throat is to stay in my arms all day, cry a lot, fuss and say “Mama? Mama?” over and over in a searching, bewildered way, AS IF HE WASN’T ALREADY SITTING ON MY HIP.  Oh and definitely? Don’t nap.

OF COURSE, I am sympathetic to my poor sick baby, and YES, I relish the time with him in my arms, but the splitting headache I woke up with is not getting any better, especially since I can’t put the baby down long enough to find the Tylenol, I finally ate breakfast at 1:30 p.m. and my work isn’t getting done by itself. And I bet you’re a little tired of looking at that Land’s End  bathing suit.

So we came to an agreement, Henry and I. I promised him lots of loving later (and a pony! and ice cream! and a sports car!) if he would just chill out in his crib for 30 minutes. After about five minutes of fussing, he quieted down, and is playing nicely and quietly in his crib. So nicely and quietly that I keep thinking he has fallen asleep, and every time I even breathe in the direction of the stairs, he makes a sound, as if to say, “Gotcha, mommy! No sleeping here!”

So here’s my question for you. I just heard a very loud “uh-oh!”

Would you go check and see what that’s all about? Or wait for further intelligence?