Thursday, March 31, 2011

Running & Allergies (or maybe, a cold)

Yesterday, I did a long(ish) hill run.  I don't think I've done a real hill run since before Cub was born (months before).   It was a nice cool morning and I took advantage of it.  I also took advantage of Cub's 3:30 AM wake up call so I got my run started at 4:50 AM.  I'm a couple weeks away from Zooma and I guess there's no time like the present to start training for the challenging hill course.  I'm not delusional, I'm sure we'll  (my mom and I) be walking part of this course. 

So, I seem to have caught Cub's cold - that or my allergies are going nuts.  This makes running not so much fun because in addition to all the sweat I'm producing, I'm also showering the ground with snot.  Thankfully I run at an hour when very few people are awake.  It's bad enough that I scare the deer, I don't need to scare school children too.  

Speaking of Cub's cold - he still has it but he's feeling MUCH better.  Buttin and I happily told each other this afternoon, "he's back" - meaning, our playful son has returned even though he has lots of snot too. 

Here he is being playful this afternoon.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

New Doctor #2

Last week, I met with a new pediatrician.

Dr. Santa (New Doctor #1) was good, but I prefer someone closer and maybe a little more, I don't know, different - it's hard to explain.

I heard lots of good things about a practice with a satellite office close to our home (like less than 2 miles away). I called and asked if I could meet with a specific doctor - just a brief visit. I guess no one calls asking to meet with a doctor before their child gets sick (my request was met with a lukewarm, "hmm . . I don't know"), but the office staff and doctor were agreeable (had they not been, this wouldn't have been a good option for us).

The office manager gave me a tour, explained to me what they could/could not do in their on-site lab, gave me a packet of information and spent no less than 30 minutes answering my questions and discussing Cub. I felt like I was being courted. If you took all my doctor visits while pregnant, plus all of Cub's pediatrician visits and added all the time I've spent talking with a doctor's office manger I don't think it would equal 30 minutes. It was nice to know that they would spend this much time with someone who wasn't even making a co-pay.

Next I met the doctor. I read her online bio and my interest was most peaked by the fact that she ran in the Boston Marathon (she later clarified that it was an unofficial entry) - I now call her, Dr. Boston (oddly enough the actual name of Molly's vet). She's also run in other marathons (officially).

Dr. Boston and I spent about 40 minutes talking about various kiddo issues - from allergies to vaccines to Cub's lack of interest in non-pureed food. She has warmth, but isn't too fakey-sugary and I like that she considers herself part of a child-care team.

She also really likes Dairy Queen, so she must be good!

I made Cub's one year appointment with Dr. Boston.

Here's Cub's picture today - it's like he's saying - Really mom, another picture?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Misfit Monday

Not a lot for Misfit Monday today.

Not because there aren't misfit stories - I'm just tired.

We got some surprising, but delightfully happy news today - we received a pretty substantial refund from our rent for 2010. I guess they estimate expenses and the over-estimated - thus, a rebate. I think we're going to use the money for misfit tracking collars.

In Cub illness news, he seems to have returned to the coughing-like-crazy kiddo he was on Friday. No fever - just lots of coughing, lots of snotting and not a lot of smiling. Bi-polar baby has also returned.

Happy one minute.

Very unhappy the next.

Poor guy. I hope he starts feeling better soon - he has a little joint birthday party with some of his buddies this weekend - Gigi, Nana, MorMor and Dadoo will all be in town to celebrate!

Sunday, March 27, 2011


It's been a very busy few days.

I was very thankful to have my mother in town Thursday and Friday to help with sicko baby. We all took turns having him sleep on our chest (both nights and for naps) and it was nice to have her here.

Friday evening Buttin and I went to see The Lincoln Lawyer (cookie review soon) with Liz and Jonathan - super fun.

Saturday I went to Houston to attend my friend Nana's baby shower (she's have twin girls) - I was exhausted when I got home around 7:30.

Thankfully, Graby seemed better and he slept in his bed last night from 6:15 - 5 and then from 5:15 - 7:30 this morning. He ate a little better today and slept for 2.5 hours on Buttin's chest while I went to friend Allison's Pampered Chef party (I bought some toys for Cub).

I think little Cub has a lot of sleep catching up to do - he's pretty adorable, but has some little under eye circles.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Filanthropy Friday

One of Cub's sweet babysitters, Lauren, works for the Boys and Girls Club of Austin, Texas.

Their annual campaign - Somebody to Somebody - helps to raise money for the 10,000 local children they support.

I donated $15 in Cub's honor. According to Lauren, $5 is all it takes to give a child swimming lessons and for a little over $2 they can feed one child hot meals for a full year. I request that all of my funds go towards swimming lessons and hot, warm cookies.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Quick Sick Post

Graby had a fever this morning. They called us from school about 10 minutes after I dropped him off (way to go, Mom). Buttin actually said Cub felt kind of warm this morning, but I thought it was his normal wake up warmness.

Buttin picked Cub up from school and when they got home he ended up sleeping on Buttin's chest for 2.5 hours.

Thankfully, MorMor had already planned to come up today for a visit (she always seem to come when he's sick or teething), so Cub got lots of snuggle time.

By the time I got home this afternoon, he was much more playful, but still snuggly and not very hungry. He in a pretty good mood, not fussy but not 100%.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Search Begins (Maybe)

Buttin and I have lived in our little rental house for almost seven years. The front porch is a pile of bricks and our back deck is splinter heaven, but we love the location and our neighbors (who we really have only met since Graby was born).

Every May/June for the past three years we've debated our two options -- renew our lease or buy a house. We're still not 100% sure this year is THE year, but we have seriously started looking at houses and we're doing all the loan application stuff (it's actually pretty difficult for small business owners to get home loans).

As an infant, it was OK that Cub didn't have his own room but he's entering toddlerhood. I think having a space of his own will become increasingly important (for all of us - especially if Gigi keeps buying toys at the current pace). I would also LOVE another half (or full) bathroom (and perhaps a smell-proof rubber room for Cartman).

One thing is for sure - when we do leave this house, I'll cry. As an adult, I've never lived anywhere for as long and Buttin and I have experienced so much of our lives together in this house.

Alright, now for the moment MorMor and Gigi have been waiting for (they probably didn't even read the post) - today's picture of Cub:

Monday, March 21, 2011

Misfit Monday

No misfit story today, really.

Not unless you count our health insurance company as a misfit. They are very mifitty and that's saying it nicely.

We're currently in a battle fighting a $300 ambulance charge from when Cub went into the hospital last October. It's not about the money, it's about the fact that we pay all the premiums, paid the entire deductible and now they won't pay for Cub's ambulance because it wasn't "in-network". I understand the concept of "in-network" - problem is that our health insurance company DOES NOT HAVE an "in-network" ambulance provider for the entire state of Texas.

I already sent one written appeal, but it was denied. Buttin spent about 30 minutes with them on the phone this morning. I'm not sure if we'll be able to accomplish much, but at least we're making objections known.

In other news, Cub still doesn't seem to enjoy solid foods (although he does feed himself purees with his own spoon and that's pretty adorable). Today, he seemed interested in my cereal (I was eating it for lunch), but after trying a bite - he got uninterested.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A Little Shopping

Today, I made my first visit to a resale shop to buy some summer clothes for Cub. He has to stop wearing onesies when he moves up to his new classroom and they anticipate at least three wardrobe changes per day.

Here's Cub in one of his new shirts. Aren't I a good mom? I kept taking pictures as he was falling over. He looks like a strange Dr. Seuss character.

Don't worry - he wasn't injured. Here's one of him smiling (without his new shirt).

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Running Update

One of my un-posted New Year's Resolutions was to write at least ONE post a week about running. I'm not doing an excellent job at keeping up with the writing, but the good news is that I AM running.

Sadly, it's already starting to get warm. I went out this morning - 68 and about 200% humidity. Bleh. Oh well, this is running in Texas and you'd think I'd be used to it by now. In a few months - I'll WISH it was 68 (meaning it will be 80 when I start running at 5 AM).

Onto Graby news. He has been teething for what feels like all his life and I think we finally found a "toy" that offers him some relief - a vibrating tooth brush.

I know it doesn't look like he really LOVES it in this picture, but he does.

Thirty Second Movie Review - Inside Job

Inside Job

This 2011 Academy Award Winner for Best Documentary is both extremely educational (I now understand a credit default swap, but have no idea why they're legal or at the very least not regulated) and infuriating. Thankfully, no one is spared -- politicians (both sides), CEOs, lobbyist and even academics are exposed for their greed. How there isn't a prison full of these crooks - I'll never know.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Filanthropy Friday

Today's choice is rather uninspiring, but only because I was kind of forced into making the donation. It was kind of like having a Girl Scout ask you to buy cookies when you're leaving a store - you enjoy Girl Scout cookies (I do), but you prefer not to feel pressured (I always feel guilty).

Allow me to explain . . .

A young woman came to our house on Saturday (I was in the driveway with Cub, so it was difficult to ignore her) asking for contributions to the Texas Campaign For The Environment. Since I'm very pro-clean water and pro-recycling, I found it difficult to refuse. I LOVE green-centric charities and I probably would have gotten around to this one at some point during the year, but the young lady just determined this week's Filanthropy Friday for me. Oh well - I guess I'll just give to a clown college next week.

I donated $15 to the TCE.

In addition to a donation, I was also asked to write letters to my state representative about certain house bills, which I gladly did. I'm not a big write-my-elected-representative kind of person, but this was the second time in as many weeks that I wrote to Mark Strama (my Texas House Representative). I guess we'll see if he writes me back - I hope he doesn't think I'm some kind of stalker.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Friends Bite Back!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Today at school Cub was spending time in his new classroom (with the bigger kids) and he decided to bite one of his friends on the finger (kind of difficult to call this one a "kiss"). This friend bit Cub back - ON THE FACE! Seriously, I'm beginning to think these kids are either really fast at biting or the teachers are really slow.

Oh well, I guess this is all a part of growing up - sometimes you're the biter and sometimes your the bitee and sometimes your both (like Cub) all in one day.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Parent/Teacher Conference

Today we had our first parent/teacher conference.

The main topic was the transition plan from Cub's current room (for infants to 12 months) to his new classroom (12 - 18 months). Some of the changes include:
  • One nap/day - usually from around 11 - 1. This will be a pretty BIG adjustment, but most children between 12 - 14 months start taking only one nap a day.
  • More structure - for example, snacks and lunch are at the same time everyday - although he can eat or drink whenever he wants.
  • Group activities - like circle/singing time and story time.
  • More use of sign language.
  • No more bottles - Hummingbirds (he's now a Chickadee) only drink from a cup (non-sippy).
  • Shoes! I think Cash has only worn shoes for about 30 seconds during his entire life, but as he starts to walk he needs some bendy, flexible shoes.
  • No more onesies - in order to help him use the bathroom, no more clothes with snaps in the crotch. They have the kiddos sit on the potty during EVERY diaper change.
  • A lunch box - he needs to bring a lunch box/bag everyday to school. He's also going to start feeding himself more, which means about five wardrobe changes/day. I'm not sure how it's possible for him to get MORE messy than he already does, but I'm sure he'll try hard(er).
We also discussed THE BITING. Cash bit another little baby today - ON THE FACE! Poor little girl. I think his teacher is semi-anxious to move him up so that he's in a classroom where the kids can run away from him. There are quite a few baby-babies in his current class and they don't move yet (lazy babies).

Here he is today practicing (kind of) some of the skills he'll need when he moves up to his next class.

Eating finger food - really he's just offering me a Cheerio.

Drinking from a cup (shot glass) - lots more water on the table and on his clothes than in his mouth, but he's trying.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Misfit Monday

Misfit Monday is bought to you today by one of our cleaning misfits, we'll call him Darren.

The following is a rough transcript of a conversation that happened a couple months ago between Darren and his boss, Timmy.

Darren: It sure is cold out.
Timmy: Yeah. My computer said it was 28 degrees.
Darren: Wow, your computer has a thermometer inside it?

I can't make this stuff up.

Here's a picture of Graby today. He smiles, but you can see it in his eyes - he's tired and a little sicky.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Cub & The Dandelion

Today has been an off day for Cub.

I'm not sure if I should blame Daylight Savings, teething, his cold or it's just one of those days. He hasn't been napping, he's been coughing and he's been living up to his Graby name

Even with it being an off day, Cub still managed to get in some dandelion time - the kid adores dandelions.

But, I guess they don't taste so good.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Swim! Swim!

It's back in the pool time!

Buttin bought TWO pools for Cub today - one to use right away and one as a spare in case the first one gets torn or yucky.

The new pool is about twice the size of last year's pool! We splurged for the $15 pool, instead of the $10 one.

It was a little on the chilly side, but it was a beautiful day. Cub took to the water like no time (it's been about five months) had passed since he last went swimming.

I'm looking forward to many more afternoons in the pool.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Filanthropy Friday

Today is a two-fer!


A while ago, I did a virtual run for another blogger's 40th birthday.

In that blogger's race summary, she asked everyone who participated to visit another runner's blog and say "hi". This is how I found Barefoot Angie Bee.

I've been fascinated by barefoot running ever since reading (listening to) Born To Run and Angie Bee is a true barefoot running ambassador and all around awesome mom.

Angie Bee has four sons and writes about them often on her blog. One of her sons has autism and greatly benefits from an Easter Seals summer camp. She's organized a raffle on her blog to raise money for Easter Seals.

This Friday, I'm happy to help a fellow running, blogging mom with a cause that is important to her. I donated $10 to her raffle.


I was planning on donating to the Red Cross in April to coincide with the talent show that the trade association I'm a member of is doing to benefit the Red Cross (remember my beautiful pink eye dance?). However, sometimes crap happens (like the earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan) and I just felt compelled to give immediately. So, I also donated $10 to the American Red Cross today.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Running & Biting


I ran this morning for the first time since STOMACH BOMB 2011. It was a nice, cool morning and even though it was just a quick 3 miles, it felt good to move in a direction other than towards the bathroom.


Cub got his first "incident report" at school yesterday for biting a child on the arm. I also got a call from his teacher. The incident report is worded rather sweetly (I think they're trying to protect my feelings):

Cash was giving kisses to a friend and then bit the friend on the arm.


Maybe the friend had it coming? Just kidding.

In addition to discussing Cub's biting with the teacher, she also gave me a nifty little article about oral motor development and sensory activities. Parent fail.

She doesn't think Cash is biting because he's frustrated or angry, she thinks it has more to do with him needing variety in his food textures. The problem is Cub doesn't seem to like finger foods (like puffs) very much. She recommended chewy things like dried fruit. Cub didn't seem to enjoy dried fruit. We also tried beef jerky last week and he seems to be much more fond it than dried fruit.

We're having our first parent/teacher conference on Tuesday to discuss ways to focus his biting away from human flesh as well as his transition to the next classroom. That's right, sniff - sniff, Cub is moving up. Apparently, he's already been spending time in his new classroom with the bigger kids and really enjoys it. He might be ready to move up, but I don't think I'm ready.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Dear Cash - 11 Months

Since you're nearing ONE YEAR, and I can't bare to think about it - I thought I'd write you a poem for month eleven.

Dear Cash,

If I were a chef, I'd love you more than my favorite dish;
and if I were a genie, I'd love you more than a wish.

If I were a frog, I'd love you more than another frog;
and if I were a woodchuck, I'd love you more than a big log.

If I were a doctor, I'd love you more than a cure;
and if I were a cow, I'd love you more than manure.

If I were a beautician, I'd love you more than hair;
and if I were a butt, I'd love you more than underwear.

If I were a boat, I'd love you more than setting sail;
and if I were Jack (or Jill), I'd love you more than my pail.

If I were a diamond, I'd love you more than a ring;
and if I were a child, I'd love you more than a swing.

If I were a note, I'd love you more than a song;
and if I were Chuck Barris, I'd love you more than a gong.

If I were Christmas, I'd love you more than a tree;
and if I were good student, I'd love you more than a spelling bee.

If I were a giant, I'd love you more than really big shoes;
and if I were a detective, I'd love you more than good clues.

If I were Galileo, I'd love you more than the stars;
and if I were Al Gore, I'd love you more than electric cars.

If I were a farmer, I'd love you more than cotton;
and if I were a memory, you'd never be forgotten.

I love you more than anything loves any other thing;
and it's impossible to measure - all the joy that you bring.

Please be sweet to your dad & me;
and please don't grow up too quickly.

Love you with my whole heart,

Here's a quick picture of you playing your new favorite game - Stair Master!

You bolt for the stairs (our wonderful deck stairs, which I'm sure aren't compliant even by 1950s standards) the second I let you outside and then you go down the stairs, then up the stairs, then down the stairs and then again and again until I stop you. You also seem to think that every drop (no matter how far down) is a stair. So, you'll throw your legs over anything and we have to be very careful.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Programming Interruption

I realize that I'm off schedule.

Yesterday was supposed to be Cub's 11 month (gulp) letter and today is supposed to be misfit Monday. However, yesterday (morning) I caught a horrible stomach bug. It was so bad I was in bed (or in the bathroom) all day long and never even turned on the TV. Poor Buttin caught the same thing yesterday evening and he was in the bathroom most of the night (my friend Liz also got sick last night). Right now Buttin and I are starting to feel better, but we're just keeping our fingers crossed that Cub doesn't catch it.

Here's a little picture from Saturday, two of my best friends (who are sisters) came to town for a visit. Cub was a little shy, but I think he has a thing for blondes.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Charlie Sheen Quotes by Cub

We've had some great weather this past week, so I've been taking lots of Cub pictures. Sometimes it looks like he's having a conversation with me. Here's Cub delivering Charlie Sheen quotes (also from this past week).

I closed my eyes and made it so with the power of my mind.

I got magic and I got poetry at my fingertips.

I'm tired of pretending like I'm not special. I'm tired of pretending like I'm not bitching, a total frickin' rock star from Mars.

You borrow my brain for five seconds and just be like dude, can't handle it, unplug this bastard. It fires in a way that is, I don't know, maybe not from this terrestrial realm.

They picked a fight with a warlock

I probably took more than anybody could survive... I was banging seven-gram rocks, and finishing them.
I have a different brain, I have a different heart. I got tiger blood, man I'm rolling out magic, bro.

Most of the time - and this includes naps - I'm and F18, bro, and I will destroy you in the air and deploy my ordinance to the ground.

I just don't do it. I will not believe that if I do something then I have to follow a certain path because it was written for normal people. People who aren't special. People who don't have tiger blood and Adonis DNA.

I think the honesty not only shines through in my work, but also my personal life. And I get in trouble for being honest. I'm extremely old-fashioned. I'm a nobleman. I'm chivalrous. I mean, what's not to love?

Especially when you see how I party man, it's epic. The run I was on made Sinatra, Flynn, Jagger, Richards, all of them, just look like droopy-eyed, armless children

Friday, March 4, 2011

Filanthropy Friday

I started Filanthropy Friday as a way to give back and give thanks. However, many charities are (for lack of better phrasing) kind of depressing. So instead of being a celebration of my gratitude, Filanthropy Friday is sometimes a downer.

My fan (Liz) decided to research some fun (ish) charities and made some suggestions. This week, I donated to one of her suggested charities - The Critter Connection.

The Critter Connection is a non-profit group dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of abandoned and neglected guinea pigs.

I donated $10 to these little critters; however I want to know why these guinea pigs need rehab? Are guinea pigs the Charlie Sheen of the rodent species?

P.S. If any other fans (hi, mom!) have an idea, I'm open to other suggestions for Filanthropy Friday.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


I got a call from the school yesterday.

Cub is biting.

This isn't a behavioral issue (some kids bite around age 3 or 4 when they act out), it's just developmental. He's teething and learning how to use his mouth and his new utensils.

Here is a modified transcript of my conversation with his teacher - what I said and then the actual truth.

Teacher: So, at home, what language do you use when Cash bites you?

Me: Um, I say things like, "please be gentle with your teeth" or "teeth are for eating"
THE TRUTH: I laugh.

Teacher: So, at home, do you let Cash play-bite you?

Me: Um, no, not really.
THE TRUTH: Yes and we laugh hysterically when he comes at us - mouth open wide - ready to bite/kiss.

Teacher: So, at home, do you play-bite Cash?

Me: Do I bite my child? Um, no.
THE TRUTH: Yes - I stick his little feet in my mouth (after bath time) and say, "maw, maw, maw" and he giggles and giggles.

Teacher: So, at home, do you have him practice giving gentle kisses to your animals, real or stuffed?

Me: Oh, yes Cash is very gentle with our animals. We demonstrate how to give sweet kisses to our cats and dogs.
THE TRUTH: This is what Cash does to Mouser.

Cash: Oh, look a kitty. Perhaps I'll use this as an opportunity to practice gentle kisses.

Cash: Hold still kitty, this won't hurt one bit.

Cash: Gotcha now. This is gentle, right?

Mouser: Help me.

Teacher: OK, so it sounds like we're doing the same things here at school. Maybe you can bring in one of his favorite stuffed animals and we'll practice being gentle here at school too.

Me: Oh, great idea - I was just thinking that myself.
THE TRUTH: Oh crap, my kid is a biter without a favorite stuffed animal and he'll probably grow up to be some kind of strange biting Boo Radley-esque man with rocks for friends.

I called Buttin right away and told him that we have to stop laughing when he bites us (or the animals or his friends or our friends or his grandmas). It's just so freaking hard not to laugh at his adorable toothy cuteness.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Parenting Fail #521

What does it say about my parenting skills that when I give Cub a book, he tries to eat it BUT when handed a remote - this is what he does: