Wednesday, January 31, 2007

a new throne

it's purtty isn't it?
this video, by the way, reveals very little except that i've given up on plastic bibs because t2 just wants to gnaw on them and he likes applesauce. i thought the grandparents might like to see it.
it was time for a high chair - the little munchkin can wiggle his way out of the bimbo chair thing (please don't ask how i know this) and really needed a full on place to chow down. thanks to grandjane and poppy, we have this very cool piece of baby gear.
in fact, it might be the coolest thing in our house right now. isn't that sad?
so here's my dirty little secret - i've been feeding the baby all kinds of grub for about a month now, maybe longer. most docs and people say foods should only be introduced after 6 months and then very gradually. but there's something about me and rules - we just don't jive. and i really don't do gradual - it takes way too much patience.
all i needed was one laid back mom at the park to tell me she gave her daughter a lot of whatever she'd eat at 5 months and i was at the grocery store stocking up on bananas, green beans, peas - you name it.
don't get the wrong idea. i didn't just dump it all in a pile and let him have at it. i did at least start with greens like our doctor said and i only introduced one thing at a time, giving it a few days to make sure it sat ok.
eating is just so fun and i wanted him to enjoy it as much as we do. a picky, skimpy eater won't survive in our house.
so to make it as much of an adventure as possible, i just hand over the bowl and spoon with a little left on each and let him lick them until his heart's content.
it's a disasterous mess. last night i found a smear of sweet potatoes behind his ear as i was rocking him to sleep.
see? he likes food some much he finds places to hide it for later.
what a little smarty.
on another note, four people in the last week have approached t2 and i and asked us if we're nordic. i get sorta embarrassed because honestly i don't know. are we?

Monday, January 29, 2007

bathing beauty

i don't do bathtime that much anymore because in the divide-and-conquer mission that is bedtime, t1 dominates the strip down & soap up. however pops was working last night so that left just me and little 'ol t. i took about a million pictures, but this one is my fave. poke, poke, poke that belly.
here's the headline of the day: dead soldier to father kid with woman he never met. weird. i mean, i didn't even know sperm from a dead man worked. but now that i do ....
also, i'm getting a little confused. the 2008 elections are still a year and a half away, right? not this november - 9 whole months, the gestation period for a baby human, from now - but next? i'm already tired of hilary clinton and her 'let the conversation begin' who-ninny. right now i'm not voting for hills because she thinks people actually want to talk to her for 21 months.
anyway, she's not my fave but i gotta give her props for saying today that she "knows a thing or two about evil men" in response to a question about how she'd handle dictators. hahaha. hahaha. HAHAHAHAHA. hahahahahahahahahahahaha. poor chelsea.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

don't buy cheap diapers

5 dollars for 60 some store brand diapers was just too tempting. but what i've saved in diaper costs i've spent in laundry detergent and water bills. my god, cheap diapers suck. every single time i change t2 he's had some kind of blow out or is swimming in pee. it's terrible. what's funny about it is that he doesn't mind - at all. the kid can be covered in poop and happy as a clam rolling around on the floor. kinda like our dog moose.
someone told me store brands were just as good. i can't remember who that was, but when i do i'm totally calling their bluff. sweet, soft pampers, take me away.
while i'm mythbusting, i'm going to just go ahead and say that the breast feeding class lady who told me that nursing is so much easier than formula feeding is a BIG FAT LIAR.
now that it's all over, i feel like calling her up and telling her what i think about her way too rosy outlook. maybe i'll do that today.
it so was not easy. in fact, it was border line pain in the ass. first, the anxiety about even being able to do it at all. then being able to do it, but not sure if the baby is actually getting enough. then knowing the baby is getting enough and doing so 8 to 10 times a day. then realizing that you can't go away for more than 3 hours without the baby or the god forsaken pump (which i later called my pimp) and that you're in it a-l-o-n-e. then all of the hidden charms, like special bras with confusing clasps and public stares (although not so much in LA, hooter capital of the world) and what to do when you forget a pump part or the batteries die or suddenly your chest is a faucet in the middle of target or your kid sleeps through the night but your boobs don't.
of course, i'd do it all again cause i like punishment. the benefits outweigh even the worst drawbacks. i just wish someone would have been straight up and told me it's pretty knarly and not all that beautiful, but that it won't last forever and it's the right thing to do if you're up to it.
instead i got a bunch of attachment parenting gribbibdly garb sprinkled with some guilt and was told how warm and fuzzy it'd make me feel. it did sometimes, especially the first few weeks.
but come on, people. how can having a little critter suck the life out of you really be all that wonderful for any great length of time? if i'd been thinking clearly - and by that i mean if my head hadn't been clouded with all the bs - i'd of come to terms with this much earlier than i did. i still would have done it. and i still would have honored the 6 month contract, i just would have been a bit more cheery about it.
there. i feel better. now if i could just find that lady's number ...

Friday, January 26, 2007

squeaky wheel gets the grease

i have a really loud kid.
really loud.
he realized he has a voice a couple of weeks ago and ever since then he's been practicing finding the highest high pitch he can muster and then squealing at the tippy top of his lungs for as long as he can stand it, which turns out is a pretty long time.
i keep reading that babies at this age babble, coo, razz (what the hell is razz?) and mix vowel and consonant sounds. and then i keep trying to get t2 to imitate me saying bbbbaaaa, ba, babbabaab, mamamamamama, dadadada in a low, mellow tone. but everytime i try that he goes, "AAAAAAAAAAKKKKKKKKEEEEEEEEEEEEEEKKKK" and then giggles at himself. seriously.
it's never when i expect it - like when we're swimming or dancing around or singing songs (well, sometimes when we're singing songs).
he'll be competely mellow, say in the grocery store, and then all of a sudden as i'm ordering shaved turkey breast he lets out this shreek. or we'll be in a coffee shop filled with serious looking people pecking away at their computers (not a SINGLE person in LA works in an office, i'm convinced) or reading quietly when RRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAACCCCCCKKKKKKK he goes. and then just when he has everyone's attetion, chuckle chuckle chuckle.
sometimes it's so loud and so unexpected it scares me.
most of the time people don't seem to mind. in fact, most people laugh and greet him or talk back to him which is exactly what he wants to happen. a couple of grouchy old fuddy duddies have glared, but in my book if you're going to be a cold-ass lump of coal your feelings don't count.
i'm not about to hush him up. if that's his voice, well then so be it.
let's be real - the boy gets props for figuring out which sound gets the most attention and then maximizing it for effect. he OWNS the squeal.
oh yeah, he's a tayloe alright.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

ugh, health insurance

i don't have much to say except that we got a huge bill from our pediatrician today for the 1,000th time. and so for the 1,000th time i called our health insurance company to tell them that our doc is in fact contracted with them and that everything listed should be covered. and then for the the 1000th time they said, "oh, yes, that's right. ok, it's all pending and we'll straighten it out."
so then i had to call the pediatrician and tell them i called the health insurance people and get the jimmy on what we actually owe them in copays.
which left me wondering, if i'm doing all of this wtf are they doing?
the thing is, we have a great health insurance plan. and we're totally blessed in that it's 100 percent paid for by tayloe's employer and for the most part we've paid nothing, absolutely nothing, for all the medical expenses we've racked up recently.
on another note, i love the hat in this picture cause it's great on a bad hair day. but everytime i wear it i feel like slater from dazed and confused.
"Didja ever look at a dollar bill, man? There's some spooky shit goin' on there. And it's green too."

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

road trippers

horray, we're home. we left last thursday and hauled it across ca, nevada and into utah to go to the sundance film festival.
tayloe the dad and i are big on road trips - we've driven across the country together twice, spent our honeymoon on a wild, windy road trip to maine, took a vacation last summer and drove from the tippy top of washington state down hwy 1 (pch) to san francisco and the first thing we do when we're bored is take a drive. we're roamers. it's what we do.
so at 6 months we figured it was time to get t2 on board and show him what it's all about. and it was great - we spent a night in vegas, took him to the shark reef at mandalay bay, hauled him through mountain desert, put his little feet in the utah snow and landed in park city friday evening.
saturday we did sundance, sunday we did a little more sundance and some football, went swimming and watched it snow.
everything was going great.
until it stopped going great. sometime around 3 a.m. monday morning tayloe the dad and i both woke up with the barfs.
oh. god.
isn't that the weirdest thing? for both of us to get sick at the exact same time? and for the baby to be completely, totally and absolutely fine?
here's where it gets hairy. as t1 and i burned a trail from the bed to the bathroom, t2 was his normal cheery angel face self. laughing, rolling around, squealing his little heart out.
i could hardly stand to look at his bottle of milk, much less deal with spit up and diapers. but i mean, what do you do?
um, you call your mom. wait. i AM the mom.
oh, hells.
sometime later in the afternoon when things really weren't getting much better, not much better at all, all we could think of was that if it kept up we were going to die in a hotel room in midway, utah, and t2 would be left to the mormons and grow up to have five wives.
with that we decided to find a babysitter (which isn't that easy to do in the middle of nowhere utah) and go to the er. we're a team, tayloe and me, and a good team always figures out how to beat the beast. (unless you're tom brady's team in which case the beast beats you with an interception in the last 10 seconds of the game. ouch).
thank god i married a man who will absolutely not give up until he gets what he wants and also thank god for kind people. after a short "discussion" with t1, the hotel manager found us a sitter, called us a driver and took both tayloe and i to the hospital.
they took us right in. we had the nicest nurse and doctor in the world pump us up with fluids and anti-nausea meds, let us take a nap and sent us back recharged and feeling a little better.
we managed to get some sleep and the next morning made it out of utah alive.
there is a god because t2 hasn't gotten it (yet. pray, pray, pray) and was a golden, sweet darling child the entire 12-hour car drive. he just laughed and played and sang camp songs with us all the way home sweet home.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

uhmygosh, oshkosh

little boy. overalls. what's not to love.
today i went to albertson's, the most ghetto grocery store on the planet, to stock up on formula.
oh wait - i don't think i wrote about weaning. t2 and i had a six month contract, which officially expires next week. it's bye bye booby. except for the first morning feeding. i hope to keep that one as long as i can so i can stay in bed while he chows and drift off for another half hour or so. purely for my convenience. i so deserve it.
anyway, i was hoping to stock up on formula because we're going to utah tomorrow. i needed a couple of 26 ounce cans.
this is how ghetto albertson's is - they keep the forumla locked in a glass case.
they also lock up the razors. the beer, wine and hard liquor, meanwhile, is sitting out on the shelves just waiting to be stolen.
you actually have to press a button that summons someone to come unlock the formula case which is the funniest thing in the world because albertson's has the WORST customer service in all of LA.
so i'm in the baby aisle and i see that they're out of 26 ounce cans, so i guess i have to get a few 12 ounce cans which is a real drag. the 12 ounce cans are in this dispenser thing, which is usually not locked. so i grab for what i want. it won't budge.
it's locked. a $10 can of baby food.
so i punch the buzzer thing and a lady comes with keys.
only not the right keys.
she yells down the aisle to someone else, who comes with more keys.
only those are also the wrong keys.
meanwhile, i leave my cart and go get all the other things i need. i come back and the lady is still fiddling with the lock.
are you kiddin me?
10 minutes later, she BREAKS INTO IT with a coat hanger. and, of course, there's only one can of the formula i want.
heaven help me.
this is just the kind of thing that gets me frazzled and causes me to do something stupid, which i did.
an hour or two after i got home, tayloe walked in the door with my wallet.
him: did you lose this?
me: i didn't think so?
me: where was it?
him: on top of your car.
me: aaacccckkk
him: did you put it there when you got home?
me: silence. scared look. um, no.
him: i don't want to know. just try not to put your wallet on the roof of the car, ok?
me: check.

sappy wappy

we'll be out of town for a few days, so i leave you with this, your moment of zen.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

loudest baby on the block

big shout out to g. emery here.
thanks. so. much.

Monday, January 08, 2007

the name game

fellow new mom and blogger sarah noted that the most popular names list was released today, which reminded me i've had a name blog post in my head for a while now.
here goes.
we knew the minute t2 was born he had to be john tayloe. we had a few other family names we liked, but he just looked like a tayloe, which is to say he looked like trouble.
it was important that he have a name that connected him to our family. to both of us tayloe means virginia and virginia means home. we're both a bit touched by wunderlust and maybe t2 will be too (or not), but hopefully even as he traverses the globe he'll never forget who he is (child, who are your people?). i know his dad never has.
anyway, we named him knowing he'd face a lifetime of "nice to meet you taylor"s and "dear mr. jon taylor emory" but tayloe the dad lived through it. we thought if he really hated it he could just go by john.
we also knew it wasn't exactly immune to playground meanness (gayloe).
what i never suspected was that people would actually think we named him halo.
which makes me wonder: do i look like a total dip shit?
(geoff emery, don't think i can't hear you ... )
it's funny how the brain works, isn't it? someone asks his name. i say it's tayloe as clearly as i can (like they're deaf -- TAY LOE). then they repeat whatever it most sounds like that's in their vocabulary.
or, um, halo.
i know that part of it is that parents have gotten really cre8tive with names and pull random nomers from far and wide to try to make a statement. Peaches. Apple. Pixie. Zen. Fifi.
so in that context i guess halo seems normal.
the other part of is that the name tayloe just isn't ingrained of california history (yet).
so it's all forgivable.
but of course i can't just leave it at that. more often than not i correct strangers until they get it right. then i insist on telling them it's a family name. i do this, of course, because i have to make it known that we aren't trendsters who liked the name taylor but wanted to jazz it up a little.
telling people it's a family name is pretty senseless because family names aren't that normal here. if they were, there'd be a lot more adam goldsteins.
it gets really confusing if tayloe the dad is around because eventually they realize there are two of them and that we named our son after his father, which also isn't that normal here.
so basically, we've somehow done what many of our peers have done without meaning to. damned if you do ...
tayloe, by the way, always just tells strangers his name & t2's name is john. zzzz.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

T2's tryout for 2026 World Cup

This kid has got the skillz!


the tayloes

someone save me from this cuteness!

Saturday, January 06, 2007

eating, act 2

i can't really blame tay for not liking rice cereal. it gets a zero on the yum scale.
so after a couple frownie times of trying it, we switched up the menu a bit and subbed in oatmeal.
if you ask me, there really isn't much difference in the two but the baby seems to think there is so we'll leave it at that.
here's one more reason to not like Toys R Us. someone ought to tell that mother, though, that it's not so smart to go entering public contests if you have some skeletons in the closet.
speaking of SNAFU, did you see that the army sent letters to dead soliders, asking them to re-enlist? yeah, cause it worked out so well the first time.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


last weekend we went to the los angeles zoo, which you might think means we went downtown or to compton or drove on the freeway or just walked down the street.
but we went where there are for-real furry animals and only a few crazies.
i have a real love-hate relationship with zoos. we lived just blocks from the national zoo in d.c. and i always got excited about going there and then would spend an afternoon walking around looking at animals only to leave feeling kinda depressed. tayloe sometimes tagged along and tried to cheer me up by telling me that elephants in africa hump huge red exercise balls all the time or that all the lions he saw in africa all paced back and forth or that cheetahs aren't smart enough to tell a real rock from a fake one.
the los angeles zoo is pretty nice, despite the fact it costs $10. t2 liked the seals and the zebras and the alligator. i liked the sno cones and tayloe liked keeping it real for us all at every exhibit.
tayloe: i can't believe i'm looking at a river otter at a zoo.
me: he's kind cute, though. look at him, doing little flips off the wall.
a minute or so goes by.
me: he's really having a good time doing flips off the wall. he just keeps going around and around and around.
tayloe: have you ever seen otters in the mill pond do that? have you ever seen a river otter anywhere do that, for that matter?
me, frowning: no.
tayloe (puts his arm around me and turns us around to walk away): right.
later on t2 and i were watching an elephant pace in it's "habitat" when tayloe spotted eric mccormack standing nearby. tayloe's fun to have around for this reason. he can spot celerities from 10 miles away. he never even watched will and grace.
there's a picture above with him behind us. can you see him? orange sweater & scarf, will truman style.
yeah, i didn't think it was him either (i'm all the time forgetting that we live in la and that there are famous people everywhere, even at the zoo, acting like normal folk). but then i heard him say to his little boy, "that elephant looks very unhappy" and i was just waiting to hear karen say, "well of course he's unhappy, honey. there isn't a single bar in this place.”
i think zoos confuse me because i start to get fuzzy aout who's in captivity. are we on the outside looking in? or the inside looking out?
discuss amongst yerselfs.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

sucker punch

this afternoon t2 and i went to the santa monica ymca. i went to work out. he went to try out baby care. it was our first time there and i'm not going to lie - my main motivation is that i can drop him off with the gym sitter for 2 hours for just $4.
so i did, i dropped him off, which was a little like throwing a baby sheep to the wolves because it's total romper room madness.
i instantly thought about the germs and how little he looked compared to the rollicking toddlers and how everyone there was a complete stranger.
i preservered and kept thinking of having my own time, just me and my ipod on the stairmaster (HAVE I LOST MY MIND????). so i handed him over, and i said goodbye and watched through the door as a pack of toddlers tumbled around on the floor and the baby care lady plopped t2 down in an excersaucer and walked away. sigh.
45 minutes later i came back. he looked no worse for the wear. baby care lady was playing with him in her lap and he seemed happy. his face was a little red, but it was kinda hot in there. i asked how he was. baby care lady said fine. i asked if he cried. she said no, not really, only that he'd fussed a little bit. i took him from her, said thanks and left.
on my way out, i stopped at the information desk to ask a question. when i turned to leave, a lady was standing behind me directing her 2-year-old to "apologize to that baby."
huh? i said.
she shruged. oh, my child hit your baby.
um, what? he. hit. who? my baby? THIS baby?
the hitter and i made eye contact. he was cute. scruffy hair. wild eyes. red sneakers.
i wanted to kick the little ankle biter in the mouth.
yeah, she said. the lady told me when i picked him up that he hit your baby.
(that's funny, i thought. she didn't tell me that.)
to her kid, again - apologize to this baby son.
he said he was sorry, more to me than to t2, who i think was actually smiling at him.
i looked at t2's face. it was especially red on one side.
i'm really sorry, she said to me. she had serious remorse in her eyes. and also a little bit of fear only i'm not sure what she was afraid of, my reaction or her own kid, who was now yanking on her purse.
she told me how she told her son that if he did it again he wasn't coming back to the Y. as she spoke to me, her little boy b-lined for the vending machine and started banging he glass.
the first thing i said probably should have been, "oh, no worries. it's ok. kids!" because all children go through a hitting thing and i'm sure someday i'll be her talking to me.
but that wasn't the first thing i said.
instead i blurted, "but it's our first day here."
and then i tried to say it was ok, that he seemed fine, it was no big deal, but it was too late. she already looked like i'd shot her best friend.
i'm so so sorry, she said as she trailed out the door behind her son, who was stuffing cheetoes in his mouth.
i looked at t2, who was smiling at me.
mr. california.
hey, baby. if you're not worried, i'm not worried. he's just a little guy (a mean little bratty brat brat with messy hair) who (picks on little kids because he doesn't feel good about himself) didn't mean to. so let's have a talk now about hitting. we don't hit, we hug. and i stroked his little face and nearly squeezed him to death.
(and then to myself ... 1-2 punch. 1-2 punch. 1-2 punch. southpaw, southpaw, southpaw)