Thursday, March 31, 2011


For the last few days I've been trying to upload video of S. One is on her cool trike from Grania--it has a piece that makes it a rocker, or that piece can swing around to help push S on her trike, or we can take it off and she can ride it. Someday. We also had video of her climbing the stairs, which just melts my heart. She goes up a few steps, turns around and grins at me, and keeps going. Alas, the videos refuse to load so you're stuck with descriptions. But pictures to come. In the meantime our wonky oven seems to have normaled out again (is that a word?), so I may have some baking pix to share (the cranberry scones were delicious). I'm almost done with one of J's socks from my sock class, and I'm dangerously close to finishing a cabled cape that looks gorgeous. Oh, and we're expecting a Nor'easter starting tonight, so there may be yet *another* chance for S to wear her snow suit. So when there are pictures to share, I'll be sure to share them.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Last hurrah

It may be spring by the calendar's reckoning, but our area hasn't quite gotten the message. We just had what I hope is our last snowfall of the season, so I bundled up S and let her enjoy one last hurrah.

Checking out the kids coming home from school. We learned something new now that S is walking--her snow boots squeak! We were both delighted with this revelation.

Walking on snow-covered ground is not for S. She preferred to just sit and try to figure out the white stuff.

It was so cute to watch her toddle along the sidewalk. She hasn't yet had many chances to walk outside, so we still find it to be quite the novelty.

C'mon Mom, let's go!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The big tease

I realize it's still March, and snow is still a distinct possibility. But this is getting old.

The kicker is, it was 70 degrees on Friday.

They mentioned something along the lines of another 4-8" over the day tomorrow.

Kid pictures to share

Motoring around the island in her Irish shirt. S's latest thing is to do a running loop around the island, just because

She LOVES her birthday balloons. She's figured out how to get them off the back of her high chair, and she carries them all over the living room.

I just love this picture. J took it while I was out running errands.

Another J picture. He's taught S how to put boxes on her head as "hats". So she got her bin for her blocks and ran around the living room with it on her head. She thought it was hilarious!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St Patrick's Day!

Where's the soda bread? OK, any breakfast food will do...

Not digging the shoes, Mom

But the outfit? It's cool.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Toddler in strange places

Heading for the dryer, with her new hat from Cousin G on her head

A seamstress in the making, playing with Mommy's measuring tape

Sitting on the arm of her new chair from Grania


Are you sensing a theme???

Doing some remodeling ;)

S got some sentimental pieces of art from Nana in recent months. One was a beautiful panda print from Chinatown in San Francisco, and another was an embroidered pillowcase from my Nana that my mom had framed for S's room. It was a perfect time to put them up and show them off.

Now they're up next to the window S sees when she wakes up every morning!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sickness abounds

Monday afternoon S started with a runny nose. We weren't sure if it was from her shots that morning or a cold creeping up on her. She slept horribly Monday night, she was so congested.

Tuesday was a disaster. Her nose was a faucet, she hated getting it wiped off, and by the afternoon I had a mild headache and a scratchy throat. Tuesday night's sleep was even worse than Monday.

Despite the craptastic sleep, S was up at 8:10 this morning, raring to go. I dragged my tired butt out of bed and just tried to keep up with her. By the afternoon her faucet-y nose was drying up, and I felt horrible. S got 2 naps in, one with Mommy in the afternoon so we could all feel better. J came home and said he thinks he's getting sick.

If things go as expected, S will be back in healthy form by tomorrow, and my cold will be easing up. J still has the worst night to look forward to. So far S has been asleep for almost an hour and we haven't heard a peep. Yay!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

More pictures to make my mom happy

My mom was shocked (shocked I tell you) and more than a bit disappointed that none of S's birthday pictures included her. She told me no fewer than 3 times in our last phone call that I needed to remedy that situation.

She'll probably be mildly disappointed in some aspects of the photos I chose (I picked her "bad side" or didn't crop appropriately), but I think they're lovely.

I hope Dad doesn't make a similar request. I found zero pictures of him with S. I think he and Mom arm-wrestle in the car for who gets the baby when they get here, and Mom rigs the results.

Here you go, Mom. I hope you like them.

Monday, March 7, 2011

12 month stats, and pictures to make my mom happy

S had her 12 month checkup this morning. The ladies at the front desk couldn't believe she was a year old already. She's holding steady at 20 pounds (all that walking doesn't allow for much weight gain), and has shot up to 30 inches tall. The doctor said she may be "petite". Other than 2 shots (which didn't bother her in the least), it was a very uneventful appointment. Just the way we like it.

When we got home, I put some of S's clothes away and went through her closet as I tend to do pretty often. I toss out all the clothes she's outgrown, put the current sizes front and center, and organize them the best I can while a small person is flinging clothes and hangers all over her room. I remembered that her birthday outfit came with a poofy skirt, and decided to put it on her.

Gotta love the cankles.

Now, I don't put her in a lot of frilly or girly stuff. Heck, half the time she looks like a boy. At this age I don't think she needs anything too fancy. As someone who has mostly crawled until recently, dresses are (literally) a drag because they hit right at the knee and stop momentum. And she's just going to get food all over it anyway. But I'll admit she looked adorable.

Of course, as I was taking her skirt off, I decided to see how it looked on her head. J shot this picture right before S ripped it off.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Scenes from a birthday

S's birthday banner

The first birthday plates, and the amazing (I mean a MA zing) cupcakes my friend Cathy made

Beautiful girl

With her stocking hat from Maw

The piano prodigy

In her new chair

Testing out the cupcake

"Oh, I'm supposed to eat it!"

Her personalized book from Grania

Checking out her dinosaur egg

S has had a wonderful weekend. She got to go out to dinner with her Nana and Tapa at her favorite Irish restaurant. She went to the outlets. She had a little party with her family. She had her first sweets, in the form of yummy cupcakes. She was inundated with amazing presents that will last for years. She got to see her Nana, Tapa, Grania, Maw, Aunt Annie, and Uncle Bruce. It was a great weekend that we will remember for a long time to come.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Coming Home Day

A year ago today, we brought S home for the first time.

Stupidly, J and I decided to go to work for a half a day that day. I'm not exactly sure why, because we certainly weren't going to get any work done. It did give me a chance to talk to my HR department about time off, and grab a few things from my office. Around lunchtime we met at home, and J strapped the car seat into the car. Of course, he put it behind the driver's seat, and he has long legs, so that meant I was driving.

S's birthmom didn't have a going-home outfit for S, so we went through our small stash of baby clothes to find something cute. The only "cute" outfit we had was a 6-9 month size, and we (again stupidly) thought it would fit just fine on a not-quite 7-pound baby.

We headed to the hospital and waited for the social worker to arrive. We all headed up to the hospital room and started the process of getting S home. Her birthmom signed some papers. The nurse handed us all sorts of stuff. We put a ginormous sleeper on a tiny baby. J and the nurse negotiated getting S into her car seat. The nurse said we needed to make sure the angle of the seat was right, "or the baby can fall forward and suffocate". Great. S's birthmom and I exchanged panicked glances, and the nurse quietly recommended that someone ride in back with her.

S's birthmom, having already given us the greatest gift we could imagine, gave us a present. A present. Can you believe it? It was a beautiful figurine of a couple with a little baby. We were so, so touched.

We all took the elevator down together, and said our last goodbyes to S's birthmom and her mom. There were tears and promises to see each other soon.

We got into our car and headed home. S's giant hat kept slipping over her eyes, so J spent most of the drive uncovering them. We stopped for a bite at Sonic, and S got hungry. J gave her his first bottle there. I looked over and saw a car full of teenagers and realized how different our lives were at that moment.

We got home and realized we still didn't have a crib mattress. J left me alone in the living room with a newborn and headed to WalMart. He got a mattress, a bedding set, and every item of clothing that said newborn on it. I don't remember the rest of the night. Something about trying to put her in her crib, then bringing her into bed when that didn't work. J created a nest of blankets for her, and she slept for 4 or 5 hours.

And so began parenthood...

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Reliving The Call

A year ago today, we got The Call that we were going to be S's parents.

It started out like any other day. J and I were getting over a monster cold, and I still had a nasty cough. I attended a mind-numbing meeting that wasn't really relevant to my project at the time, and headed back to my desk. I stopped to talk to our editor, and heard my phone ringing. I figured, "Oh, I'll just check messages when I get done, it's probably no big deal."

I finally wandered back to my office and checked my e-mail. There was one from J that said "Call me. We got matched. It's an emergency".

Eeee! I called J on his cell phone, and the first words out of his mouth were, "Do you want to be a mommy?" I wanted to yell, "Yes!"

He gave me a ton of details, and my boss wandered in to drop something off. I finished up with J and said, "We got matched!" I called our social worker to tell her we were on our way, and she gave me more details. The baby had already been born, her birthmom was firm in her adoption plan, and she had picked our profile. She wanted to meet that afternoon. As people trickled by my office, I got to share the good news. We called our parents.

[Interesting aside: a couple of weeks before this, I'd sent a list of phone numbers for our social worker to call in this situation. I just *knew* that J would be unavailable, so I gave her a long list of numbers to reach me, and a short list of numbers to reach J. Our social worker couldn't get a hold of me that day, but J answered on the first ring. Go figure.]

An hour later I was on my way home. J met me there and we tried to figure out what would be a good gift for S's birthmom and her mom, who was spending time with her in the hospital. We called a local florist and tried to explain that we needed 2 floral bouquets in the next 20 minutes. I asked J to throw all of our collected baby clothes in the wash, because we'd need them soon.

We drove 2 hours to the hospital, and waited as the social worker for S's birthmom made her way through rush-hour traffic to meet up with us. We sat in the parking lot while I called my HR department, and I canceled my weekend waxing appointment (I have priorities, ya know). We headed inside and waited some more. We glanced at the magazines in the hospital lobby.

The social worker finally arrived, and we headed up to the maternity ward. We met the cutest, sweetest, young woman and her mom. We chatted. We talked about S's birth story. We talked about what her birthmom did for a living. We talked about us. We talked about our families. We talked, and talked, and talked.

A nurse brought S in. She looked SO tiny. We asked if we could hold her, and her birthmom said absolutely. She was a light as a feather. The next thing I knew, J was chilling in a hospital chair with a little bundle on his chest.

We overwent our "allotted" chatting time by about a half hour, we were getting along so well. The social worker finally told us that we had to head out so we could sign paperwork at our agency office.

We got in the car and drove over an hour to our office, where our social worker was waiting with a mountain of paperwork. Most of which said that we were now responsible for another human being, and also noting that we could take her home the next day. Around 9pm, we headed home, put the baby clothes in the dryer, and tried to sleep. Because we were in for another really--big--day...

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy Birthday S!

I've been thinking a lot about the past year, so the next few days are going to be some reflections on what happened just 12 months ago.

A year ago today, S was born. Her birthmom, unaware she was even pregnant (yes, it happens, and more often than you think) gave birth, by herself, at home.

A year ago today, S's birthdad got the most surprising phone call of his life, telling him that he had a daughter. And he chose to ignore the news.

A year ago today, S's birthmom, after being admitted to the hospital and getting some rest, looked at this gorgeous little girl and realized that she couldn't be the mom she wanted to be for her daughter. She couldn't provide her with a mom and a dad. She couldn't stay at home with her, something she had growing up.

A year ago today, this amazing woman decided that the best thing she could do for her daughter was to place her for adoption with a family who could give her all the things she couldn't.

A year ago today, S's birthmom looked at 2-page profiles of families who wanted to adopt and saw a picture of a guy with a silly hat on his head. And thought he liked to have fun. And that he might be a great dad for a certain little girl.

A year ago today, we had no idea any of this was happening.

A year ago today, J and I went to work like any normal Wednesday. I can't even tell you much about what was going on. I was working on a new project that was taking up a lot of my company's time. We were going to opening night of Alice in Wonderland on Friday.

A year ago today, I posted this post on this blog. And ordered some baby clothes online, because we didn't know if we might be matched with a baby soon.

We had no idea what was going to happen in just one day.

This morning, a gorgeous one-year-old woke up at 8:30am ready to start the day. And heard the strains of Happy Birthday to You from her Mommy. This afternoon she's going to see her Nana and Tapa, who flew out all the way from California to celebrate with her. Tonight she's going out to dinner with Mommy, Daddy, Nana, and Tapa.

It's going to be a good day.