Monday, April 25, 2011

The topic that is off limits in our house until May 11th but of course I am asking you NOW

Baby names. Tim refuses to discuss potential names until we see BOY parts or GIRL parts at our ultrasound but that doesn't mean I can't discuss them here, with you, my people. By discuss I mean I want you to give me some ideas as I have nearly none. Picking Noah's name was exhausting enough and the thought of doing that all over again is giving me hives.

If you could so kindly leave some suggestions for both genders, I would be so very appreciative. If we pick one of your names maybe you'll win a hug! From me! Oooh, exciting!

The only limitations are that it has to be somewhat interesting because with a last name like Smith you just can't go around naming your kid "Joe" or "Jane" as lovely as those names are, we are not tied to Biblical names even though we already chose Noah, and cultural origin doesn't matter too much to us. Oh, and if it's a boy his middle name will most likely be William in honor of my grandfather and father so we have to work with that. And no funny spellings of names...keep it classic.

There you have it. Please help me and, whatever you do, please do not mention to Tim that we are having this discussion. Shhhhhhhhhh.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Noah visits the Fire Station

One of my very favorite people is married to a real live fireman/paramedic/EMT (did I get that right, B?). She is also a super smart mommy who thought to herself: "I know a 2.5 year old little boy who would probably love to visit a fire station and see the engines up close." That little boy's mommy thought that was a most Brilliant Idea. So two Saturdays ago, we all set out for a fun-filled visit to the fire station where we were treated to a fantastic tour.

The evidence of one ecstatic little boy is in the pictures:

Driving the big fire engine. He even got to turn on the lights!

 Trying on a helmet in his size.

Size comparison.

Mommy and Noah.

Learning how to use the Jaws of Life.

Manning the heavy hose!

Pretending to be a paramedic on the ambulance.

Such a happy little guy!

Chilling with his new buddy, the Fire Engine.

The visit to the fire station might just rank as the best day in his entire life. When we pulled into the parking lot Noah had a bit of a nervous breakdown...I think the idea of seeing the fire engines up close and personal overwhelmed his little self. However, by the time we went inside and said hello to the firemen he was cool as a cucumber. R, my friend's husband and our valiant tour guide, had Noah at ease in minutes and showed him all around the engines and the fire house. They even had an emergency call while we were there so Noah got to see R jump into action and the engine and ambulance take off with their sirens blaring. I believe the term is awestruck.

Thank you B and R (and sweet baby girl C) for a memory-making trip to the fire station! We had so much fun!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

PT, Day One.

We had Noah's physical therapy evaluation today. That If you will remember, and as I have whined about a number of times on this here blog, we had Noah evaluated by the state back in late November for potential complications from The Fracture (PTSD, GO AWAY).  He didn't qualify outright for state services but we learned a lot about some of his delays and coordination "concerns". And by learned a lot I mean we started noticing that he was having trouble climbing, running, jumping, etc. At the time, the state therapists thought we could take a wait and see approach to his delays...give him some time to catch up to his peers and have his teachers keep him active and moving. A couple of weeks ago his teachers approached us with concerns that he was falling farther behind rather than catching up. They spend the most active time with him so we knew we had to figure this out sooner than later. Two days later we had scheduled his evaluation with the PT department at Children's Memorial Hospital (they really are fantastic).

Cut to today and a confusing evaluation, even by the therapists' standards. Noah is jumping, climbing and walking just fine, a little weakness in his left side was noticed but nothing that extra time at the playground and being active at home couldn't help. However, as soon as they asked him to run, and oh he tried so hard it brought tears to my eyes, he was failing on all counts. He's throwing out his left leg. He can't run straight to save his life. He looks like he's in PAIN when he runs but when asked if it hurts, he says no. I believe him. The PTs were confused, we were confused, and Noah just wanted to go back and play with the cars. How can he climb, jump and walk with such normalcy but when it comes to running everything just falls apart? It's strange.

We go back next week for a more in depth evaluation and hopefully the PTs will be able to come up with a plan to help Noah, to help us. I know he'll be just fine and when I look at him I see so much happiness and joy in his face. My boy is special, we already know that, and perfect just the way HE is.


Side note: I spent about a half hour in the waiting room by myself while Tim and Noah were on their way to the appointment. I observed babies with helmets, toddlers with braces on their legs, and kids in wheelchairs. Our little problem with running is NOTHING compared to what these families deal with and overcome on a daily basis. My heart went out to them and to these kids who are amazing. I know we're lucky. Very lucky.

Monday, April 18, 2011


weeks, that is. Trucking right along and wondering where I hid my pregnancy pillow. Mama needs her "boyfriend" to help her sleep.

Yes, we plan to find out what we're having and yes, Noah still thinks it's a robot. May 11 is the Big Gender Reveal Day so mark your calendars.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The first of many parent-teacher conferences

We had our first parent-teacher conference last night and I think I have been set up for a future of disappointing conferences. This conference set the bar so damn high that we'llprobably never reach it again. True, this is 2.5 year old preschool so we're not talking junior high (oh dear) or high school (hold me). I fear any conference that follows will always start out with "Noah is such a pleasure to have in class but..." and then trail off into "concerns" and "potential". I've seen the movies, I know plenty of teachers in real life. So, while I can, I'm going to brag a little about my kid and his school, fair warning.
Tim was held up at work so it was just myself and Noah's three teachers chatting around a teeny table and sitting in primary hued elf-size chairs. I found this immensely funny because it was just like I imagined it would be, except this time I'M THE MOM in this scenario. It was...surreal. Noah's teachers, Miss D, Miss S, and Miss L, are the three most lovely women I have ever met. They treat the kids in their room, all 20 of them, like they are their own. Hugs are doled out by the minute, tears are always wiped and acknowledged and boo-boos swiftly kissed. I never worry that Noah isn't getting the attention he needs or deserves. I knew these women were special when the first words they said at the conference started out with "Noah is positively one of the most wonderful children we have ever met and we will be so sad when it's time for him to move to the 3 year old room. He is so special and we love him so much." And then...nothing. No "we're concerned about..." or "he's not doing this or that very well". Just smiles and nods and a continued conversation about how wonderful my son is. 
Obviously, again, this is 2.5 year old PRESCHOOL. I wasn't expecting any grave concerns about Noah mixing up the letters of the alphabet or learning better impulse control. It's just's so rewarding to hear three people, who are not related to your child, extoll his virtues without bookending the conversation with anything negative. I clearly know my child is a rockstar (what? you don't think that about yours?) but to hear other people think that and tell you brings on the warm and fuzzies. It also reminds you that your child really is special and not just to you, but to other people in his life.
I will be forever grateful to Noah's first teachers. They may never see this space but I hope we properly and effusively convey our appreciation of, and to, them. They make going to work so much easier each day and return to me a happy, well-cared for little boy at the end of it. We went through trial and error to find this school and we're so very lucky. I'm so happy he'll be staying on for preschool this fall and reaping the benefits of even more teachers who love him and cherish him. It may never be "just like mom and dad" but it's a damn close second.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Men like bullet points and numbered lists

Now that Tim has taken a full-time job with one of his clients (let me just say, halleluah for a salary!), he's been home earlier in the evenings and generally more available to help around the house. This is a good thing, a very, very good thing. Yes, he still sighs when I ask him to load and run the dishwasher and still comes bounding up to me after he completes a household task reminding me he did it and would like some recognition (which usually gets him a Girl Scout cookie...I kid. He gets them himself.) However, though he's doing things I need done and being generally helpful, there are still things I need to teach him about how our household works.
Dear Darling Husband, Love of My Life:
1. Unless you go to Trader Joe's, apples are sold by the pound and not individually so it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to buy the BIGGEST apples as you are ultimately paying more and our two year old can barely eat half an apple. Buy the medium size ones and only buy three at a time.
2. Always buy two loaves of bread and two gallons of milk. Yes, it seems like a lot for three people but YOU eat sandwiches everyday and drink a huuuuuge glass of milk every night. With your Girl Scout cookies.
3. We don't buy Diet Coke unless it's on sale i.e. $3.50 or less for a 12 pack. $5.50 at CVS is NOT acceptable even if you are going to die a slow, painful death by caffeine withdrawal. Or get the 2 liter for $1.00 and deal.
4. The washing machine has a lot of little buttons but I have pre-set them all so all you have to do is throw the load (that has already been separated) into the machine, add the detergent to the little drawer at the top, and push "start". Close the laundry room door. I promise, it is THAT easy.
5. Speaking of laundry, the detergent is concentrated for a high-efficiency machine so you only need to use a third of a capful. Any more and you will drown us all in bubbles.
6. The clean clothes folded in the laundry room are not the only ones Noah owns. He has a dresser and closetful and I worry his teachers think he only has three shirts and two pairs of pants. Feel free to experiment when you're getting him dressed in the morning...I promise that he'll look cute regardless.  
7. Also, Noah does not always get to decide on "oatmeal and raisins" for breakfast. Who's the boss around here?
8. The cleaning supplies live in the cabinet next to the sink. The old rags for cleaning live there too. I put them together to make it super easy. Feel free to use them as necessary.
9. The vacuum is purple and lives in the laundry room. It's that tall thing that makes a lot of noise and sucks up all your cat's hair. You plug it into the wall and turn it on and push it around the floor. Noah can show you how it's done. He's a master.
And a shout out:
10. You do a fantastic job emptying the dishwasher and not complaining when I reorganize our cabinets without telling you. This is my most dreaded task and thank you for doing it without asking (anymore). You're earning major husband of the year points.