Sunday, July 02, 2006

Dan-isms, Part 2

Anna is completely enthralled with books lately. She is also going through a stage in which, for the first time in her life, she is resisting going to bed. This has resulted in several nights where we sit exhausted as Anna brings book after book to us, insisting that we read them. One such night just wore out poor Dan. The two of them were on the couch surrounded by just about every book Anna has. The floor around the couch was similarly covered. Finally, in true distress, Dan cried out, "I can't keep up with her thirst for knowledge!"

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Anna's First Slumber Party

The other night Dan and I put Anna to bed as usual, without turning on her bedroom light. We did the goodnight routine and as I was leaving the room, I sensed a cat had entered. I asked Dan if Tiger or Lucy was in the room and he was checking when I walked out. We never discussed it further. The next morning I heard Anna awake in her crib, babbling as usual. Only her babbling seemed more purposeful and she was laughing. I heard her say "Tiger." I opened the door and there was Tiger, who immediately made a mad dash toward the litter box downstairs. Anna was quite excited and seemed determined to tell me about all of Tiger's escapades. When I got her to my mom's that morning and told the story, my mom asked Anna, "did you have a slumber party with Tiger?" Anna immediately got a huge smile on her face and put her hands on the floor. "Tiger," she said, and did this kind of strange crawl. She imitated the cat.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Anna's Tantrum and the Growl of Rachel

Anna threw her first real tantrum today. It wasn't too lengthy, just a preview of what she's capable of. She thought Dan was going to go outside without her and she proceeded to storm around the room, pounding her hands on whatever she could find, letting out an angry "ungh!" with each pound. She went from the couch to the ottoman and even the boppy pillow on the floor. When she realized that Daddy had left the room only to get her shoes, she remained unapologetically angry and babbled something to him that most likely was her version of "that's right, you'd better be putting on my shoes!" Yikes. I'm really looking forward to the legendary terrible twos now.

In other news, Rachel has been growling. She tucks her chin down into her chest, causing her her to look somewhat like a sumo wrestler and just lets it rip. It's hilarious. There doesn't seem to be a reason for it, except that she enjoys making us laugh. She usually follows the growl with a typical Rachel smile. Practicing for future mood swings perhaps?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

A Breakthrough At Last

I finally figured out an Anna-ism. For a long time now, she greets people - and things she's happy to see - with a word that sounds like "EYE-nah!" She says it so brightly that it just makes me smile whenever I hear it. Dan and I have been trying to figure out why it's not just "hi." We thought maybe she was saying something like hi there or maybe she was repeating her name like we do, hi Anna. Then last night Anna ran up to me and I said to her, "hi honey." And it hit me that I say that to her somewhere close to five million times a day. Add to that the number of times she hears Dan and I say it to Rachel and to each other. No wonder she says it. I am immensely relieved to know that I am capable of understanding her.

Dan-isms, Part 1

The following exchange occurred earlier this evening -

Honey, Rachel is grabbing fistfulls of my hair and stuffing it into her mouth.
Dan: Don't take it personal.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Rachel's Milestones

Rachel is at a fun stage where she seems to learn something new on a daily basis. She has never seemed to have the urgency Anna had at her age - kicking and fighting to get to her belly; wildly shaking her toys; raising her head and doing stomach crunches - but when she learns something new, she seems so happy and serene. This weekend she rolled from back to belly for the first time. She also suddenly knows how to sit on her own. She's great in the bumbo seat, but now she can sit up for several minutes at a time, playing with her toys. Something about seeing her sit up on her own just made me realize how fast she's growing. Today she also started looking for toys she has dropped and raising her hands for me when I go to pick her up. Such a busy weekend for such a small girl.

The Secret Language of Anna

Anna is quite verbal. We are hoping that someday we can learn her language. Several things she says quite clearly: Dad, Mama, Tiger, baby, yeay, tickle. Most other things she says in a funny stream of toddler-speak. She speaks to the television, to the computer, to Rachel; she says hi and then talks into the cell phone on her shoulder. She says ohhhhh when she sees something she likes and uh-oh when something is wrong. She shrieks in delight while being tickled and sometimes even babbles just to be funny when she is in a particularly silly mood.

But my favorite is when she is trying to communicate with me or Dan. Her voice drops to a whisper as she holds up her sippy cup. Tkah, she whispers to me, indicating that the straw is folded away and she needs help. She repeats that strange string of sounds in whisper when she picks some random crumb off of the carpet and hands it to me to throw out. I have no idea what she is actually saying, but she certainly has a way of making her thoughts known.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Phrases I Never Thought I'd Use Part 1

"Which one of you pooped?"

Weird Science

This morning, Anna's big poopy diaper was outweighed by Rachel's wet one. Keeping in mind that Anna outweighs Rachel by approximately 10 pounds, I am mystified. But then again science was never my best subject.

Thursday, February 09, 2006


Rachel laughed for the first time about a week and a half ago. I was holding her after a feeding and she was mostly asleep with her cheek pressed up against my chest and I looked down at her and said her name. At the sound of my voice, before her whole name was even out of my mouth, she giggled. It was such an amazing sound.

Then last weekend Anna blew me a kiss for the first time. Dan was taking her to bed and I was waving goodnight to her after smooching her cheeks. As Dan was walking out of the room with her, I blew her a kiss and she put her hand to her mouth and blew one right back at me. She is just so sweet.

And last Saturday morning I looked at the clock and noticed that it was 9:30 a.m. Then I realized that despite the fact that it was 9:30 a.m., everyone in the house was still asleep. Rachel, Anna, Dan. A miracle had indeed occurred. Rachel had been asleep for eight and a half consecutive hours.

About fifteen minutes later, Rachel woke up crying loud enough to wake Anna, at which point my house became bedlam for the day. But what a nice little present Mommy got for a Saturday morning!

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Random Goofiness

Anna's latest goofiness
Twirling. Like a ballerina, only sillier. She puts her arms out and spins in circles until she's dizzy, then she falls down and laughs. Anna also enjoys a new evening ritual wherein we take her clothes off and she runs around in her diaper, shrieking in delight.

Rachel's goofiness
Ok, she's an infant and not really goofy, at least not knowingly, but she is smiling a lot more now and starting to stick out her tongue for no apparent reason.

Date night goofiness
Dan and I had our first night out together in over a year last Friday. No children. Free babysitting (thank you Dan's sister Amy). A quick dinner, the movie I've been wanting to see for months, ice cream after. And what am I thinking? That I am sad that I missed putting Anna to bed. Maybe not so much goofy as pathetic...?

Grandparent goofiness
As told to me by my dad, who visited my grandparents earlier today...
Grandpa (picking up the salad tongs): I need one of these for when I go pee.
Grandma: Ok, I'll go look for small ones.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Or Maybe Not So Much

We tried to recreate the scenario that led to Rachel sleeping all night. It didn't work. I KNEW there wasn't a Santa Claus.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Santa's Late Arrival

Yes, I am Jewish. And yes, I am 34 years old. But I am beginning to believe in Santa. Why? Because last night, my little Rachel finally slept through the night!

I was spoiled with Anna. She basically slept through the night from the start. A few fussy nights here and there, but she'd easily do six hour stretches at night, and soon was up eight to ten hours. I knew there would be payback this time around, but I forgot how utterly exhausting it is to have a child who likes to eat every three hours. Especially going back to work and having to deal with grownup life on no sleep.

The worst part about getting up with Rachel isn't even the feeding. It's trying to get her back down to sleep afterward. Either she wants to stay awake or she wants to be held. Getting her back to her crib is nearly impossible. Sometimes she will tolerate the swing, but that isn't the magic weapon it was with Anna. The low point was two nights ago, when after three hours of crying, she finally fell asleep in her carseat on our bedroom floor with her pacifier. So, I asked the expert (my mom) and she suggested putting rice cereal in Rachel's bottle before bed. I did just that at 10:00 last night. By 11:00 Rachel had finished her bottle, finally burped and cuddled with Daddy for a bit. She was in her crib by midnight. At 6:00 this morning I woke up and found her still asleep in her crib and happy. I even had time to blow dry my hair before she woke up at 6:30.

After two months of fussy sleepless nights, I consider this a belated Christmas miracle!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

The Big Return

Ok, so I've let my shame about not keeping this blog updated run my life long enough. So I'm back. I can't promise that there won't be another seven month "hiatus", but I will do my best. Besides, I've been busy having my second child in a year - that is a somewhat time-consuming project.

Anna's little sister Rachel arrived on November 15, 2005. I was really hoping there would be at least one full year between the two children, but alas, I was carrying a Bornstein. Which basically means that she was going to do what she wanted, when she wanted. And indeed she did. Her due date was December 22nd. Somehow, I just knew I wouldn't go that long. Well, lo and behold, I start having contractions on Sunday night, November 13th. I couldn't really tell if the baby was just stretching or if I was having Braxton Hicks or what. But it wasn't frequent or painful, so I went to bed. Monday morning I was still having them, but how many times was I sent to the hospital when I was pregnant with Anna for the same thing? And they kept sending me home after giving me some meds, no problem, right? So I decide to go to work, after all, I had court. So I go to court. I go see a client at the jail. I go back to my office, drink a bunch of water, put my feet up. By early afternoon they were getting a little worse, so I call the doctor's office and head over to the hospital. Talk about denial, I left my laptop at the office, convinced I'd be back the next day.

I got the hospital at about 3pm. On the way, I call Dan and tell him not to worry about meeting me there, it's going to be just like the times this happened with Anna. After some tests, they give me some meds and check my cervix. I'm told that I'm not dialated, so that's good. I still think I'm going to sleep in my own bed that night. But now the contractions are getting a little more painful. Mom is in Florida, supposed to be there for another day and then head to New Jersey for a couple of days. So I am calling and updating her. She asks if she should try to take the last flight out that night or come in the morning. I am surprised. "You're coming back?" I ask her. I was still convinced they would be able to bring this whole thing to a stop.

But it's more serious than all the times this happened with Anna. I end up being admitted for the night. I get an IV with magnesium sulfate and morphine. They send in the nurse practioner to talk to me about what might happen when I deliver, and even send in the anesthesiologist to talk to me about the spinal. I spend the night a sweaty mess (a nice side effect of the mag) and waking up every so often with an especially painful contraction. By morning, no one can believe I haven't had the baby yet. Mid morning check shows that I am slightly dialated and 90% effaced. After more than 24 hours in the hospital, Dr. Houser arrives and tells me we need to get the baby out. I call Dan and tell him to leave work immediately. Rachel was born at 4:54 pm.

My biggest fear was that being not even 35 weeks along, Rachel would be rushed out of the room the minute she was born, but luckily she came out crying and looked good. I got to see her and kiss her, Dan got to hold her. After they had her assessed, they realized she needed some help with her lungs, but she did really well. She was only in the Special Care Nursery for six days and we had her home for Thanksgiving.

She's now over seven weeks old and she's wonderful. At her one month checkup she weighed over seven pounds. Anna can't get enough of her. She gives her hugs and kisses and today she said "hi Rachel". Ok, so it sounded more like "I way" but we knew what she meant. Now she just needs to teach her little sister how to sleep through the night.

I still can't believe I have children, girls, plural. It's been such a whirlwind year.