Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Flowers for Mami

Tuesdays are tough days for me because that is the day I go into the office - in Atlanta. So I wake up super early, drive for 2.5 hours, run around like a crazy woman at the Garden meeting with people and doing Garden things, drive for 2.5 hours, out of which about 35 minutes involve sitting in traffic and get home right at dinner time. Tuesdays are tough both physically and emotionally because I miss my babies! I seldom get to see Benji in the morning and at night I am home just in time for dinner and bedtime.

Yesterday I got home to the best surprise. Benji greeted me with a beautiful bouquet of flowers! "This for you, Mami" he said. As if that wasn't enough, the story that followed left me grinning up until now.

Norm was at the store with the boys and they went past the clothes. So then it starts:
Benji: Get shirt
Norm: Do you want to get a shirt??
Benji: Get shirt, surprise Mami
Norm: you want to surprise Mami! Let's get her flowers
Benji: Yes!!

So they went over to the flower section and Benji picked out the most beautiful bouquet. I'm so in love!

Monday, October 2, 2017

A Long Month Ahead

We used to dread Halloween Night when Pellet was around. Because although we'd turn off all the lights and sit in the room furthest from the front door, it never failed that Pellet would still freak out with the noise on the street. Not to mention the rebel children that insisted on ringing the doorbell.

Last week, the neighbor across the street put up a lovely Halloween decoration:

As they were setting it up, I mentioned to Norm that it is going to scare Benji. Norm dismissed it saying that Benji will see it during the daytime and he'll be fine. 

Well..... that afternoon we came home from school and Benji got out one of his cars and was riding it down the sidewalk. Suddenly he stopped. And then it started:

Benji: What's that?
Fern: (as I noticed people walking down the street, I honestly didn't think he had noticed the decoration) They are neighbors!
Benji: What' that black thing?
Fern: oh, that's a Halloween decoration (what else was I going to say - that is a big scary monster and those people shouldn't have put it up considering there are at least 6 toddlers living on this block?)
Benji: I don't want to see it..... 

He gets on his car and starts driving it towards the house. Stops and looks at it again:
Benji: That scary mami. 
Fern: You think so? It's just a Halloween decoration Benji, it's fine!
Benji: it has mouth.......... it walks?!?
Fern: No, it doesn't walk. It just moves its hands up and down

As he stares at it from across the street:
Benji: it has little hands...... I go back to my house

He starts riding his car back home.
Benji: it Harroween?
Fern: yes, it's a Halloween decoration
Benji: I don't like that.................

We got back home and he was fine. Until it was time for dinner. As he walked towards his chair, he walked pass the front window and got a glimpse of it. He came running back to me in the kitchen:
Benji: it scary.... 
Fern: what's scary?
Benji: Harroween....... I don't like Harroween..... Harroween not my favorite

Looks like October is going to be a long month. 

Friday, September 29, 2017

Month 5

One more month and he'll be ready to start eating solids... oh that's so bittersweet! Meanwhile, let's keep enjoying the current stages.

Nico's personality is starting to show more and more. Although he can get quite serious, he can be pretty cheerful and seeks out conversation. He is so good at making eye contact and following noise and objects. He reaches out for toys when you place them in front of him. And he loves his feet. He does such a great job at grabbing them!

Just like his brother and his Daddy Norm, he is super ticklish. And along those lines, he loves to smile. Everyone that meets him has something to say about how much he smiles and what a pretty and contagious smile he has. His Mother's Day Out teachers tell us that every single time we both drop him off and pick him up. Melts my heart!

For about 2.5 weeks - since Hurricane Irma, to be exact - he decided to start waking up in the middle of the night to eat... sometimes he'd wake up more than once, just to cry or to fart. Yes, he'd wake up, fart and go back to sleep in the middle of the night. Since about two days ago, he's started sleeping through the night again, which makes us all happy.

He is a pro rolling over from his back to his belly. He hasn't mastered belly to back just yet, although sometimes you'll catch him after he's rolled onto his back as he lays staring up blankly wondering what on earth just happened.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

This Pa Broken

For the last few months, Benjamin has been chewing on his pacie (also known as Pa). We weren't going to buy him a new Pa when the last one got gross, but we broke down and did since things were still a bit of chaotic in our lives with Nico's arrival.

We noticed the other day that the current Pa was all chewed up and getting gross. On Friday morning (my birthday), he pulled the Pa out of his mouth and said "This Pa broken. Go in trash".

He walked downstairs and gave it to Norm and told him to throw it away. So Norm did.

In my very paranoid ways as first timer, I wanted to go buy him a new one just in case. But folks knocked some sense into me and I didn't... surely we were going to survive.

Bedtime could be a living hell, or it could be fine. It was just a matter of time to find out...

Bedtime came and as I was getting Benjamin's pajamas on, he asked for Monkey (which lived hand-in-hand with Pa...) and he asked for Pa. I reminded him that he had told us Pa was broken and had asked for it to be thrown out. He paused and did a fake cry. I quickly reminded him again and immediately without skipping a beat changed the subject. It's amazing how we develop super powers like that when we become a parent.

Nighttime has been going great... naptime has been tougher, today he didn't sleep. Which means that everyone's world became miserable come 5:30pm.

The ironic part of this story is that my mom has always told the story how when I was about 2 years old, I grabbed my pacie and threw it away in the bathroom trash - all on my own. And that was the end of the pacie for me. This is pretty much the only reason why I had a tiny hope that Benji wasn't going to go crazy asking for his Pa after he threw it away.

It is becoming more evident that we just may be raising the male version of me which ought to be fun.

Here's an appropriate picture in memory of Pa:

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Things He Says

Because I can barely remember what I wore yesterday (and chances are they are the same clothes I wore the day before), I want to start writing down all the quirky things Benjamin says to help us remember how his little 2-year old brain works.

My mom wears a watch.
Neither Norm nor I wear a watch.

The other day Norm was cleaning out his night stand drawer and found one of his watches. Benjamin saw it, picked it up and gave it to Norm and said:

B - Daddy, this yours?
N - yes, that's my watch
B - that your watch? Like Nonna?
N - yes, like Nonna
B - Daddy, you wear it!

About an hour later, Benjamin was playing and Norm was in the kitchen. Benjamin comes up to Norm and says: "Daddy, you have watch. Like Nonna!"

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Month 4

This little guy turned 4 months yesterday!

He is still as serious as ever - for the most part - although he has started cracking a smile here and there. Except at bath, he is quite ticklish, so at bath time he is all giggles! Big giggles!

He is quite aware of all his surroundings. He follows people across a room - it is pretty neat to watch him turn his little head as his target moves. He has started reaching out for things and quite often is he able to grab and hold on to his rattle, or stuffed friend, or blanket. He is quite strong and won't let go of easily!

He is a champ at falling asleep by himself. He is still not fan of the pacie, but has since discovered his three middle fingers. So he sucks them and goes to sleep - quite often all on his own. Very seldom do we have to rock him to sleep. I am pretty sure that with Benjamin we were still doing the 5 S's come 4 months.... And speaking of sleeping, he is still sleeping all night! An average of 12 hours, he looks quite chunky so I don't think he is missing out by not getting that midnight feeding. No complaining from this end!

He is not a fan of baby wearing... which is disappointing (and inconvenient), but I keep trying to see if maybe one time he will last in the carrier for more than the squirming 20 minutes I usually get.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Total Eclipse

It is so amazing when a plan comes together last minute - things always seem to work out. As an event planner, I cringe when we don't have a plan, but deep down inside I always know that with or without a plan things are moving forward and we just better go with it in the moment to make them happen.

The plan for Eclipse Day was:
I was going to experience the Eclipse with Natasha and her girls in Columbia
Norm was going to work
Michelle and Juan Ma were going to be in Savannah

As of about 48 hours ago:
I had a conference call scheduled for 11:30am so I wasn't able to go to Columbia.
Michelle and Juan's trip to Savannah got cancelled because whoever Juan was meeting with cancelled (she probably realized it was Eclipse Day and was not going to stick around for a 2pm appointment)

And as of this morning:
Norm was getting out from work at 1pm.

So after multiple texts throughout this morning, we came up with an alternate plan to drive up to McCormick, SC - where they were going to have totality - for the Eclipse. Augusta was 99.9%, however, that .01% is quite significant, so we decided to make the 40 mile drive.

Benji stayed at school and the rest of us, including Nico, piled into my car and we took off. We weren't exactly sure where we were going... we were just driving up to McCormick. As we got closer, Michelle discovered that there was a county airport nearby... so that's where we ended up.

No crowds. No traffic. Just us 5, a broken down car, two propeller airplanes and two other families.

We got there about 1:40pm and immediately put on our glasses and started looking up at the sun.

I fed Nico... because even though he now eats every 3.5 hours or so, it seems like he is always eating...

Then we changed his diaper and I got an ant bite

At about 2:20pm, a huge dark cloud went by so we just waited... surely it was going to get out of the way by 2:40pm....

As 2:40pm approached, everything around us changed. I do not know how to describe it because I've never experienced anything like it to compare it to... not only did the sky started getting darker, but it was a weird sort of light... almost like twilight, almost like dusk, sort of hazy, sort of reddish. The breeze picked up, the temperature dropped, the crickets started chirping, the cows mooed and the roosters crowed. We just tried to capture it as much as possible. Meanwhile through our special glasses, the sun kept getting smaller and smaller as the moon took over.
Disclaimer - we put glasses on him for fun.
He stayed in the shade - facing opposite from
the sun
And suddenly the moon was directly in front of the sun, we were able to take our glasses off and admire nature in its entirety. It was unbelievable, the ring of light around the moon was perfect. 

In what seemed to be nowhere near long enough, the sun got super bright again and it was time to put on our glasses back on. As soon as the temperature started rising, we got in the car and headed back. 

Yes - all of our necks will be sore tomorrow. Time to go take some Motrin and do some neck stretches. 

Family Picture 2016

Family Picture 2016

Family Picture 2015

Family Picture 2015

Christmas Picture 2011

Christmas Picture 2011

Family Picture 2009

Family Picture 2009
Thanks for reading! Come back Soon!