Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Skiing sucks!

My husband did something really sweet this weekend. I'm always on him about not taking the bull by the horns and just planning something on his own. If we talk about doing something for the day or even somewhere to go on vacation he always ask millions of questions and ultimately wants me to plan the whole thing. So, finally, when he asked if I wanted to go skiing and whether or not I would be comfortable with Ella being watched at the daycare at the ski resort, I said, "Just plan it yourself!" So, he did.

We traveled to Loon Mountain in New Hampshire early yesterday morning. I was excited to go skiing for the first time and I wasn't too nervous about leaving Ella with total strangers since I knew that they had a policy that only 6 infants were booked for a day and once we dropped her off, the people were really nice and took a ton of information from us because they wanted to be sure that she was fed properly, changed when she should be, and napped the way she was used to napping. So, after we dropped her off we went to rent our ski equipment. We then went to the ski lift and that was the last fun I had for the day. As soon as I got off the ski lift I fell. Then I fell again. And again. And and so forth. Obviously I knew that I wasn't going to be great since this was my first time, but it got old real fast, especially when you have 4 and 5 year olds zooming past you like they came out the womb skiing!! Oh, and I was on the easiest slope there took me over and hour to get down the thing. By the time I was down the slope I was so sore and knew I had bruises all over my body. I alos twisted my knee really bad on my last fall which sucked because I was getting the hang of it right at the end. But, I was too worried that it would just take one more fall for me to really hurt my knee or to break something and I didn't want to chance it, let alone I was already exhausted and in pain.
So, yes, I stayed at Cafe' and read a book for the rest of the afternoon while Stephen skied by himself. I felt horrible because this was supposed to be a day for us to hang out without the baby which has yet to happen since she was born. But, if I had decided to ski more, it wouldn't have been any fun for him because I would've been stuck on the green slope all day going REALLY slow. At least he got to go on other slopes and get his money's worth.

So, I'll leave the skiing to the yankees and I'll stick with the warm water sports that I'm a 'pro' at.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Blizzard '06, NetFlix, etc.

So, I'm stuck in the house today thanks to a 'blizzard' that we had yesterday. I don't really think that our area officially went through a blizzard which is considered a snow storm where the winds are at least 35 mph for at least three hours straight and visibility is 1/4" of a mile or less. Anyway, I think the officially tally for Boston was 17", although I think we may have a gotten a little more than that. Most schools are closed today, but of course Harvard isn't. So, while all the other kids are sledding with their families, Ella and I are stuck inside with three hyper dogs and nothing to do. We've played with all of Ella's toys and she's taken two naps so far, although they haven't been long enough (for her or myself). Stephen isn't going to be home until after 9pm (guess I'll be TiVo-ing 24) and I'm trying to plan out dinner for Valentine's Day evening. We decided to stay in since Ella is getting increasingly harder to deal with at restaurants. She's not bad, she's just curious about everything and it's really hard to enjoy dinner and each other's company when she wants to stick everything in her mouth, her attention span in close to nil, and service in Boston is not great anyway.

I also haven't gotten my UsToday yet which means I haven't done my daily crossword puzzle or Sudoku puzzle, so I feel a little dumb right now. I'm assuming that we are getting mail today...I guess it's just running late since we have mail carriers on foot. I am looking forward to Wed. and Thurs. when it's supposed to be in the low 50's again.

Oh! I have to talk about NetFlix. If there are people who are still using Blockbuster, you need to wake up and smell the cheaper rentals that are delivered to your front door! We love NetFlix and we're also loving watching seasons of television shows that we never got to watch such as Arrested Development. This is seriously one of the best comedies ever! Unfortunately, it's been cancelled from Fox after only three seasons. There are rumors going around that Showtime or some other cable network might pick it up, but if not, we'll have three glorious seasons to laugh at. I seriously recommend this show for anyone who loves to laugh at most anything.

OK, I'll get off my soap box and go tend to something....

Ella's 8 month update

Originally posted on February 10, 2006.

Wow, I'm actually going to get this update done on time! I guess I'll start out by saying that we took Ella to see "Curious George" for her 8 month brithday. And I'll just say that she's in an awkward stage to see a movie at the theater...the last movie we took her to was Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. She was very good during that movie and either sat and watched it or ate and slept. At this movie she watched it off and on and then would start play screaming, etc. which is cute, but of course we're always worried it might annoy someone else (even though there were only three other families there at the time). She also got tired near the middle of the movie and she would not settle down and fall asleep even if I took her in the back and walked/rocked her. So, it'll probably be a while before we take her to another movie.
As far as her milestones are going, she's still on track. Stephen says he thinks she's a little ahead, but he's biased. I mean she could be, but how do you really measure that? Anyway, she's still enjoying her solids. She's about ready to start on level 3 foods and is also enjoying feeding herself. Now, when I say this I don't mean with a spoon. But, she loves Zwieback (toast for babies) or any onther bread that tough enough for her to suck on and let it melt in her mouth (like French bread). She's almost got her pincer grasp down, too.
Ella is also VERY close to crawling. If she hadn't been so sick for a over a week, she would probably be crawling already. She loves being on the floor and she's been rocking on her hands and knees for a while now; she gets so frustrated because she can't get anywhere. She starts moving forward and falls on her stomach. She also loves to pull up on things. Thankfully she only does it on things that are very sturdy like our couch, ourselves, and in her playpen. I'm actually surprised she hasn't started pulling herself up in her crib, but I am glad about that because I hear that once they know how to do that they'll wake up in the middle of the night and do so and that's just not good for me! She hasn't seemed to pick up anything language-wise. She still says 'mama', 'dada', 'baba'...but again, I don't think they have any meaning to her, yet.
I'm sure there are things I'm forgetting. I'll blog again if I think of any, but I'm so tired right now. We're supposedly getting a blizzard late tomorrow evening through Sunday morning, so we were out all day today preparing for that. Ella went down 30 minutes ago and I'm not far off.

Ella's 7 month update

Originally posted on January 18, 2006.

Once again I'm late for my monthly Ella update, but my excuse this time is actually plausible...I'm still on vacation in FL. Anyway, Ella is a 5 year old in a 7 month old body. She has such personality and is letting it show more and more every day! It's amazing how much she's changed since we've been down here! She is now letting her wants be known like refusing to sit if she doesn't feel like it...she will make herself stiff and straight if she doesn't feel like sitting in the high chair or if she wants to lay on the floor instead. If you take something away from her she pitches a fit!! I wasn't prepared for that quite yet, but I guess that's a little of me that's coming out in her!
She also learned how to clap...not loud, but it's clapping. She also likes making noises with her mouth my humming and tapping her arm on her mouth at the same time. She still loves to scream for fun and blow raspberries...especially if you do it with her.
She's had a very exciting time in FL. Her first Christmas was very special and she got to see a lot of family and meet a lot of new friends. She also got to go to Animal Kingdom and the Magic Kingdom last Fri. with her friend Analise. It was amazing to see two 7 month olds enjoy Disney like that. Ella had a blast and I'm looking forward to taking her again.
We leave for Boston the 24th and will be there until the end of May. So, hopefully the next couple months of blogs will be filled with a lot of nice memories from a place that we are very excited to get to leave for good shortly!

Ella's First Trip to the Hospital

Originally posted on January 31, 2006.

Saturday, January 28th, became a new, but miserable milestone in Ella's short life. The morning started out with Ella vomiting up her breakfast. We didn't think anything of it at first until it was followed with horrible diarrhea and then more vomiting, etc., etc. We finally felt as if she was getting better late afternoon and was planning on going out to eat when she woke up from her nap until she vomited again. We checked her temperature and it was 100.7 or something. We were also concerned because as we were cleaning her up she was falling asleep again and she'd pretty much been sleeping all day. So, our main concern was that she was getting dehydrated. (We had called the pediatrician earlier in the day and they said to watch her and give her a little bit of Pedialyte every 30 minutes. She was keeping the Pedialyte down, but she still wasn't wetting her diapers or forming tears.)

So, at 7:30pm we took her to Children's ER. Once we got through to the treatment area they pretty much wanted to watch her while we gave her fluids to see if she kept them down. They didn't feel like she was too dehydrated to give her an IV, which I was happy about, but yet they made us feel stupid for coming in. Around 10:45pm they said we could go home if we felt like she was OK and to watch her closely. Well, as we were leaving the lobby she vomited again and had another horrible episode of diarrhea that went EVERYWHERE! (I swear, diarrhea is 100 times worse than vomit!) So, we went back in and told the nurse what had happened and whether we should stay or continue on our way home and see how she does. They took her back again and decided to give her and IV. Well, I had to leave the room for this one and unfortunately, by the time I got back from my "bathroom break" they still hadn't put the IV in. So, I was outside of the room and able to hear her scream as they put the IV in her foot. I about lost it and the nurses outside the room were asking me if I was OK. I'm a wuss, I know.

Thankfully, Ella fell asleep shortly after and slept the whole time she was getting fluids. We finally left the ER around 2am and got home where she continued to sleep until 9am the next morning. Well, since then she hasn't vomited, but she's had diarrhea continuously. I can't even count the many outfits we've gone through every day. Her bottom is so sore and I can't stand to see her like this. She still sleeps a lot, but at least she's more alert and will play for short periods of time. We've gotten in touch with the pediatrican again and they said to switch her to a lactose-free formula for a week or so she she can build of certain enzymes that's she's losing and therefore can't break down lactose. So, we'll see if she gets better, but I could imagine having diarrhea for four days let alone a baby! I'm obviously glad it's not something worse, but this is worse enough for me...and Ella.

All Ella Wants for Christmas is Her Two Front Teeth

Originally posted on December 29, 2005.

Ella has reached a new milestone in her race for toddler-hood. She has three teeth that have popped out (two on the bottom and one on top). We're happy t see that they're finally coming in because it seems like she's been teething for months; granted the crankiness that comes with teething just started in the past week or so. Thank heavens for Baby Orajel! But, Ella did have a better Christmas than just getting her first few teeth and the pain associated with them.
Stephen and I decided to have our Christmas before we left for FL so we wouldn't have to drag more stuff than we needed to. So, we had our Christmas a week early so Ella could enjyo the things we got her before we elft town. So, we got her a dragon-thiny from Fischer Price that you can put balls in that come out of the dragons mouth, etc. It's really cute. We also got her a Leap Pad for Infants with a cuople cute bks that go a long with them. I'm sure we'll be getting some more when we get back...but it's like buying Nintendo games for it...they're $12 a piece. She also got a lot of bath toys because bath time is one of her favorite times and so we thouight that shoudl we love to have toys to play with, so she gt some cute frogs that can shoot water out of their mouths and some stacking cups from Pottery Barn Kids. She also got a big inflatable duck for her to sit in in the bathtub. That should be a lot less dangerous should she fall ver while sitting up...granted I will be there with her the whole time, but sometimes you just can't catch those little boogers fast enough!
Now, at Nana and Papa's she got a some really cute outfits from Gymboree and a collection of Veggie Tales DVD's. She's also got her own cell phone which she loves, and a bus that you can put blocks in or when she gets older, she can pull it around. She also got some books, which we are s excited about. We love getting new bokos to fill her library with.
She also got a$100 gift card from my former sister-in-law and got $75 from my grandfather's daugher-in-law. This kid definitely made out really well and we had a blast watching her have more with the boxes and the wrapping paper then anything else! This time next year she'll be 18 months old and should have even more fun. We can't wait!

Ella's 6 month update

Originally posted on December 13, 2005.

Well, yesterday was an eventful visit to the pediatrician. Ella was in good spirits and showing off in front of the nurse practitioner the whole time. Unfortunately, right when we were getting ready to lay her down on the table so the NP could actually examine her, she fell over and hit her head on the wall and the corner of one of the instrument holders. I still have no clue how that happened since all three of us were standing now less than 5 inches from her! Anyway, the pretty much ruined the rest of her visit because she was fussy, getting tired, and then the shots came!! So, she got her 6 mo. boosters as well as her flu shot. But, mommy and daddy got their flu shots, too! So, Ella got to watch us get our shots first, but that didn't seem to help her out any. (My arm still hurts this morning, by the way!)
Anyway, here are her stats! She weighs 17.7 lbs. and is 27" long. Her head circumference is 44cm. Apparently, her head and length are in the 90th percentile while her weight is in the 70th percentile, just like last time. But, the NP said she's still in good proportion. Ella is also ready to start three meals a day with her veggies and fruits and should only be getting 4 6-8 oz. she'll be eating about 7 times a day. And next month she'll be able to eat some protein which I'm not looking forward to. I can't even imagine how pureed meat will look like and smell. Ugh!!
Anyway, the NP was great. I obviously prefer to see a doctor, but you could tell that she'd been doing this a long time. But, she did get annoying at times and made me feel like a bad mother when she asked if I was following the directions EXACTLY when I made her formula (well, duh!!!) and then also warned us about our dogs saying that a child should never be alone with a dog(s) until their 6 years old! Well, sorry to say, but our little hole in the wall that we live in doesn't leave much room for anyone or anything to be out of my sight wherever I am in the house! Anyway, I know she's just doing her job and that there are a lot of parents out there who are probably retarded enough that she has to say those things, but still, it was annoying.
Well, we have a little over a week before we head to FL for a month! We're very excited and can't wait to see our family and friends! I'm also looking forward to the warmer weather! I'm hoping I'll be able to blog whie I'm away, but who knows how busy I'll be. But, Ella will at least have a 7 month update while we're away, I promise.

Ella's First Cold

Originally posted on December 7, 2005.

Well, I've become and irresponsible mother and let my daughter catch her first cold. Seriously though, I guess I can't be THAT hard on myself, but I feel horrible that Ella is so miserable right now. I'm sure she got sick from all the public transportation we've been using lately, especially since we aren't using our travel system at all anymore and she's a little freer to reach out and touch the poles that people put their hands all over! Anyway, she very congested nasally (is that a word?!?!) and it sucks because we can't give her any medication that will actually work! All we can do is using saline nasal drops and then suction her nose, but she hates it. She screams and writhes and turns beet red. I hate it when I have a cold and now I hate it even more when she has a cold! It's so hard for her to drink her bottle and she'll be asleep and then start coughing because she can't catch her breath and then she wakes up screaming! Thankfully, she usually goes back to sleep fairly quickly if that happens during the night. I really thought that with her being sick I would be up at all hours of the night with her, but she's really slept just as well as before. Anyway, I just had to type out my frustration at the fact that there's nothing we can use to treat her symptoms because saline nasal spray does not work!!!

Ella's 5 month update

Originally posted on November 15, 2005.

So, this is a few days late...again. I returned home from Florida to find that our phone line was completely down. We promptly called Verizon to let them know if the situation and unfortunately they said that they couldn't guarantee anyone to come repair the problem until Tues. So, the days rolled by without me having any connection to the outside world...finally Tues. got here and Verizon showed up around 9am. I won't go into the fact of how ridiculous it is that Verizon (in Boston anyway) thinks it's OK for a customer to go days without phone service. Forget the internet....I couldn't even dial 911 if I had to!!
So, my real reason for blogging - my beautiful daughter Ella Bella (yes that's her nickname). On Nov. 10th, she turned 5 months old. I know I say this every month, but time is really flying by and it's scarig the crap out of me. I'm getting really sentimental about Ella and her time as a baby. It's going by too fast. She is amazing me more and more every day. She started doing so many new things just while we were in FL and even now that we're back she's started saying "Ma Ma"!!! Can you believe it?!?! I'm not sure if she really knows what she's saying and what it means, but she is saying it and she really only says it when she's frustrated and she wants me to come get her, so maybe she does know what she's saying. You can tell that she wants to talk so bad. She loved watching us talk to her or talk to each other. She's so aware and curious of EVERYTHING. Her personality is great. She's very relaxed and easy-going. She still only cries when she's got a dirty diaper, hungry, or tired. And even the hungry cry we've kinda gotten rid of because we're on a pretty good eating schedule. She's doing a lot better with solids and we're ready to try another flavor of cereal. I'm going to try and find barley, but I hear it's hard to find.
As for physical things that she's doing...she's finally rolling over both ways. Even though she has been able to do it for a while, she hsan't really enjoyed doing it, but I think since she's stronger now and knows how to get to her toys, she actually has a purpose for doing it now. She has really started playing with her tongue a lot. I'm actually surprised it's taken this long, but she loves sticking it out at us or making funny faces. She is sitting up on her own now and we really need to get her high chair out. I know I've been saying this for a month now, but hopefully we'll get it down this weekend since we'll finally be here for the weekend and will be working on the house. Ella absolutely loves her exersaucers...yes, she has two of them. I had to get her one while we were in FL just so she'd have something to play in and it was so cool that we decided to take it back with us instead of leaving it there for when we go back for Christmas. She's also chewing up a storm and I'm just waiting for her first tooth to pop out any day! And just in case you're around her any time soon...if she gets your knuckle in her mouth, be prepared to scream in agony; she's got a really strong bite (even without teeth).
One unfortunate thing is that I thibk she has excema. No one in my family has it, but a lot of people in Stephen's family have it and it didn't even dawn on me that she may have it until Stephen's sister saw her arms and a place behind her ear which I had already explained away with some other possibilities. But, she said it looks the same way her kids excema showed up. But, it's not too bad and it doesn't seem to bother her, so I'm treating it with lotion and will wait for her 6 month check-up to talk to the doctor and see if that's what it really is. It really bummed me out when Angela said that that's probably what it is because I don't want Ella to have any annoying things she has to deal with like itching and rashes that don't look great, but if it is excema, her's really doesn't look bad at all. I've definitely seen worse. I'll keep you updated on what I find out.
Well, until next time, have a Happy Thanksgiving! I may or may not blog before then, but either way, have a great holiday and break for work and/or school. We miss you all!

Weekend in Review

Originally posted on November 28, 2005.

I hope this finds that all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with a lot of delicious food. Stephen, Ella, and I stayed in Boston for Thanksgiving and I was planning on cooking my firts Thanksgiving feast all by myself, but one of Stephen's classmates and his wife invited us over for Thanksgiving dinner and we accepted, thinking that we would probably be a little bored with ourselves if we sat around the house all day. So, I made Angel Food Cake and brownies and we had a great time hanging out with friends.
Our football watching also started Thanksgiving Day. Although I didn't really care about the teams that were playing, it is a family tradition to watch football. We caught some of the LSU/Alambama game on Fri. (again, didn't care about those teams), and then the big game was Sat. at 3:30pm....FSU vs. UF. Now, I was giving the Crimi-noles the benefit of the doubt and really thought the game would be close, because both teams haven't been playing their best this season. I soon found out what I knew all along...the 'Noles suck!! We totally dominated that game and we should've shut them out, but unfortunately they scored a touchdown late in the game. That's the only thing that ruined the game. FINAL SCORE: 34-7. WooHoo! And finally, Da' Bears played the Bucs yesterday and thankfully we walked away with our 7th win in a row! We didn't play as well as we have been; thankfully, our defense carried us through.
Now for an Ella update, she is still growing like a weed. She's already in 6+ mo. clothes and she absolutely loves her new flavored cereal - oatmeal! I guess she just wasn't a fan of the rice cereal. So, tomorrow I'm going to start her on sweet potatoes. She also had a little nibble of mashed up banana at the Cheesecake Factory yesterday. I don't want her to have too many fruits so she won't be liking the yummy, sugary stuff before she's gotten used to the vegetables, but she actually didn't seem to enjoy it all that much. Maybe she'll be a health-nut and not like sugar! (Yeah, right!!)
So, we're officially decorated for Christmas. I'm very excited about this Christmas since Ella is around. Granted, I'm always excited about Christmas. I think I was Mrs. Claus in another lifetime...anyway, I'm already thinking of next Christmas when Ella will be more into it, but for now you can tell that she's enjoying all the lights on the Christmas tree and the new colorful things to look at. And I'm happy to say that I'm almost done with my shopping, too! I haven't started shopping for Ella yet, but we already know everything that we're going to get her. As for the family, all the neices and nephews are taken care of and the 'rents are almost done. I need to get one more thing for my G'ma and a couple more things for Stephen. And most of my shopping has been online, too. I have no wanted to brave the traffic on the streets or in the malls since being in a big city. It's crazy! And after seeing all those fights that happened on Black Friday, I have no interest in being part of one...especially since I would probably be the person to tackle someone who was cutting in line, etc.

The Plane is not cleared for landing.

Originally posted on October 15, 2005.

The second time trying to feed Ella her rice cereal was pretty unsuccesful. I can't tell if she is just frustrated by the whole thing because she's not exactly sure what's going on yet or if the stuff is just disgusting to her...she makes some pretty weird faces when she tastes it. Anyway, it's frustrating to in how messy the whole process is. We still don't have the high chair's hoping for tomorrow. Anyway, I heard from another mother that her son would have nothing to do with the rice cereal and that he just jumped to the fruits and veggies. So, I don't know what to do. I'll obviously try this a little longer. It's a little early to give up now, but if it ain't clicking after a couple weeks, then we may try something new. Any advice from the peanut gallery?

It's Great To Be A Florida Gator!

Originally posted on November 2, 2005.

I know this is coming a few days late, but I have to blog and say "congrats" to the UF Football team. I don't know why, but we always pull something out of our butts when it doesn't matter. I suppose technically our win does matter for more than the mere fact that we ended Georgia's undefeated streak. We are still in the running for the SEC Championship; we need Georgia to lose at least one more time. But, we are out of the running for the National Championship...again, thanks to our pathetic losses to Alabama and LSU (who had 5 turnovers in that game)! I still think Chris Leak is the most overrated quarterback in college football and he has been for the past couple years. I'm not saying he's horrible, but he's not consistent and of course you have people saying that he's just not used to Urban Meyer's offense...well, he apparently wasn't used to Zook's offense either. He's very inconsistent and if you're a great quarterback you are definitely two things: consistent and good in ANY type of offense.
Now that I have that off my chest, I'm very happy to say that I will be in FL tomorrow through the 8th (at least - I may stay a little longer...more about that later). It was a last minute trip that I planned since my husband is going to be out of town during the same time. He will be in Dallas, TX at an AMA conference. I decided not to go with him this time since he is going to be very busy and I've never been TX, so I wouldn't be comfortable getting around the town by myself. Usually the meetings are in Chicago and since I've been there a couple times already, it wouldn't matter if Stephen was busy because I know my way around pretty well. But, it was time for me to head to FL anyway. My G'ma hasn't seen the baby since we left and we're missing her, too. I'm not too keen on flying down there, but I'm trying not to worry about that part and keeping everything in God's hands and not trying to rely on myself. Anyway, I'll be getting into Orlando around 1:55pm and my sister-in-law is going to pick me up and meet my G'ma halfway on I-75. I'm looking forward to seeing her and of course being able to see my G'ma. I wish I had more time to see people, but time is going to fly by and Thurs. will be shot already. One way where I might get more time in FL is if Stephen decides to fly back on the 8th to FL instead of Boston and we can just spend a few extra days there since he doesn't have class next Fri. (Veterans Day). Then we'll just leave Fri. evening from Orlando together. So, if that ends up happening then I might be able to see some friends in Orlando. And if those of you in Orlando are reading this, I will call you and let you know what's going on if that's a possibility.
I know this was my first blog in a while and I'm sorry for that. Things have been really hectic and time is just flying by. Stephen's parents were up for a visit and while they were here dad's sister died, so they left a day early to get to SC. So, in the midst of all that Stephen was studying for finals for his classes that were ended after the first quarter and somehow I just felt really busy as well, although I'm not sure what I was busy with. Anyway, I'll try not to let so much time go by between blogs next time. So, I'll plan my next blog to be on the 9th, if I return from FL by then. Take care!

Ella update

Originally posted on October 12, 2005.

Here are the results from Ella's 4 month check-up: she weighs 14 lbs. 13 oz. and is 25 1/4" long. Apparently her weight is in the 75th percentile and her length is in the 90th percentile. She also got her 2nd round of vaccines and thankfully instead of getting 4 different ones, she only had to get three because one of them was a combo vaccine. While I left the room while Ella got her shots, I came back in as soon as they were through and even though she was crying, her daddy picked her up and she stopped immediately. She was a trooper and again, faired well afterwards. We stopped to get a bit to eat while we were in Cambridge and she slept the whole time we were at the restaurant. We got home and I have her some infants Tylenol just in case. But, she had no fever at that point and I'm sure she wouldn't have had one even if I didn't give her the Tylenol. Anyway, the doctor said that Ella looked great and that she was very alert and responsive for her age. Of course that made mommy and daddy feel good. Ella is also ready to start rice cereal, her first introduction to solid food. So, tomorrow we'll be going out to get some baby spoons and we'll start a few servings in the mornings to see how her tummy handles it and in the next month or so, we can start her on veggies! Yum, yum! It's kind of exciting to think that she'll be sitting with us at the dinner table soon and eating somewhat normal foods. I'm looking forward to the first rice cereal feeding, though. I'm sure I'll blag about it because it'll be an experience! 'Til then...

Here comes the plane!

Originally posted on October 14, 2005.

I woke up this morning very excited. I finally had gotten everything I needed to get Ella started in her next phase of life...eating solids. So, after searching Target for baby spoons that are rubberized on the ends, I actually found ones that turn white if the food is too hot. I thought that was pretty neat and took some annoying work out of my lazy hands. Anyway, we don't have the high chair put together yet and I didn't think that was too big a deal since Ella can't completely sit up on her own anyway. So, I held Ella in my lap with her bib on of course, and start feeding her little bites. Right away she grabbed for the spoon just to hold it which made it difficult to get it to her mouth. I have heard that if the baby does this to give them another spoon to hold on to while you're feeding them. So, I'll try that next time. Anyway, the first bite went down pretty easy. And she started opening her mouth up for it each time I put the spoon close to her mouth. But, she was over it pretty soon. I think she was getting frustrated with the whole process even though I thought she was doing really well. By the fourth or fifth time, she started pushing the food out of her mouth and I figured she was just ready for some formula. So, she promptly drank up 6 oz. of formula to fill her up!
So, tomorrow morning will be another adventure and hopefully we'll get the high chair put together tomorrow as well. I think it will be easier and it might even make Ella sit up on her own even quicker in that position. Overall, nothing too difficult about the first feeding of rice cereal, but it was a bit messier than formula!


Originally posted on October 6, 2005.

OK, this might be a weird blog, so just bare with me, especially you males who may be reading this. I had to write about this new product that I discovered. It's a new bra from the makers "spanx". You can find it at or at high end department stores like Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale's, etc. Anyway, this website sells a lot of undergarments to help make your clothes fit better by smoothing out your frame and getting rid of VPL or VBL (visible panty (or bra) lines). So, I just purchased the bra that they sell called "Brallelujah" and it's amazing. I know you probably are those girls who are obsessed with Victoria's Secret and only wear their bras, which I was before today. Yet, I paid at least $40 a bra (thanks to my boob size) and they still were never 100% comfortable even though they advertise that they're new IPEX bras make you feel like you don't ever want to take it off - NOT!
I definitely recommend this bra for gals that have C cups and above, but even if you're smaller, if you aren't comfortable in your bras, you should get one of these. They're $34 (cheaper than most VS bras) and have no under wire, yet it totally holds you in place where you want your boobs to be! The only draw back is that it has thick straps for more comfort, which is a good thing, too. But, if you wear tops that have skinny traps or even most tank tops, you won't be able to wear this bra with it. It comes in black and nude.
I know I sound like an info-mercial, but I seriously have never been satisified with a product as much as this, so I had to share it with ya'll. I can hardly tell I have it on and even when I do realize it, it feels more like a comfortable cami than a bra. And I seriously have no VBL and my boobs are in their proper place.
Now, for those of you men who may be reading this. If you want to lucky, buy this as a gift for your wife. I wouldn't even wait for her birthday or a specific holiday. Just buy it for her now.

10/10/05 - Ella is 4 months old today!

Originally posted on October 10, 2005.

My baby girl is 4 months old today and again, it's really scary how fast time is flying by. She's getting so big...or I guess I should say 'tall'. Her personality is definitely showing now and she loves talking to mommy and daddy. I wish all the pictures we took captured her personality better. She smiles and giggles a lot, but once we get the camera or video camera out she's so mesmerized that she stops everythings she's doing to stare at the camera. She's rolled over a couple times, but it's not that big a deal for her just yet. It's obvious that she could do it whenever she wanted, but she's usually just content rolling from side to side to look at herself in the mirror or grab one of her toys. She has this new thing where she screams when she's really happy, the only thing is that it comes out of nowhere! So, it could cause a heart attack or two if you're not prepared. I'm waiting for it to happen in church. One thing I'm really excited about is that she's almost sitting up on her own. I know it seems pretty early for that, but when she's sitting on our laps or if we have her propped up on the couch, she can balance herself so well and it seems every week she's balancing a little longer than the previous week. She's really into gnawing on our hands and fingers (besides her own!) and loves to pull her shirt, bib, or blanket up into her mouth as well. She has a favorite stuffed animal, too. He's a tan puppy named Calhoun and she's already got his fur matted from snuggling with him and sucking on him. Oh, another thing she loves to do is play with her feet. If she's on her back, she'll pull them up to her, or if she's sitting on my lap, she'll bend over for them. She's also starting to get into 'peek-a-boo', but only if she's really in the mood for it. Stephen had her going the other day and she was giggling like crazy, while I tried it earlier and she just looked at me like I was on crack.
Tomorrow is her 4 month check-up and unfortunately she has to get FOUR shots. I hope she does as well as last time and doesn't get a fever afterwards. We'll probably give her some infant tylenol about an hour beforehand. I know she'll freak out when she actually gets the shots, but she calms down pretty quickly. I'll update ya'll on her stats and how she fairs.

Our First Loss

Originally posted on October 2, 2005

I can't believe it. We lost! And we lost to Alabama who we hadn't played since 1999 and we loss to them twice that year! I don't understand how a team can play so different from the past four weeks. The Gators looked absolutely horrible. That could even be an understatement. Chris Leak (who I've never thought was that great) was horrible, our defense was horrible, our receivers were horrible and I'm sure some people will think that Urban didn't have a great game. But, I really liked most of the plays he called, especially the trick plays. The fake punt that we did and ended up getting a first down on 4th and 2 was awesome. And then we went for a touchdown on 4th and goal and I thought that was a great call. Granted, we didn't get the touchdown, but it was early in the game and we needed something to spark the team and Urban had said that "if we can't score on 4th and 1 or 4th and 2 then there's a bigger problem". So, I'm all for going for it. And when you look back at it, if we would've just kicked the field goal we would've lost 31-6 instead of 31-3, so who cares?!?!
Anyway, I'm sad. I'm upset. I would've be happier if #1 USC lost, which it totally looked like they would. Arizona St. was ahead most of the game, but they dropped the ball (literally) in the 4th quarter. So, I'm faced with te reality that FSU is still undefeated and it's totally by luck. They're schedule is such a joke and they really don't have a big game until they play us and that's the last game of the season! I really thought that we could go all the way this year even though people thought (and still may think) that Urban Meyer is overrated since he hasn't really coached a major team in a major division (like teh SEC). But, I believed and still do, but we just need some undefeated peeps to lose, too!

Holiday season is starting!

Originally posted on September 30, 2005.

Yeah! Tomorrow is October 1st and I can officially start decorating for Halloween. I refuse to bring out the decorations as early as stores do these days! It's ridiculous. But, now the holiday season is here. As you can tell I'm really giddy. I'm like a little kid when it comes to decorating and wanting to celebrate every holiday. This year is a little more special since Ella is here. We got a her a really cute Halloween outfit. I won't tell you what it is, but I'll definitely post pictures when we get them taken. But, I am a little disappointed this year only because we're in a new area and I don't know if there will be a lot of kids going tick-or-treating or in our neighborhood, so I'm not sure how much I should be prepared. But, I definitely want to get my pumpkins and carve them like I usually do. And we have one of those walk ways that you have to walk up steps to get to our door, so I can put them out on the steps leading up to our front door. We live on a main road too, so all the traffic can see them as they drive by and people walking by can enjoy them, too. (I know, I sounds like Martha Stewart!) Anyway, we also have two big windows in our master bedroom that are at the front of the house that face the main road. So, I have to think of a cool way to decorate the windows. Any ideas?
As for Thanksgiving, Stephen and I are staying up here in Boston by ourselves. It will be our first big holiday by ourselves, but we're really looking forward to it. I don't know if I'm going to try and make it a traditional Thanskgiving or what, but we'll see. I don't want to have these grand plans and then be disappointed if something doesn't work out. We really wanted to go down to NY and see the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, but we figured Ella is probably a little too young for that and it would be a long time out in the cold for her. So, I guess we'll be watching it on TV and then watching football all day. Sounds nice to me!
For Christmas we are planning on driving down to FL. That will be an adventure in itself! ROAD TRIP!! I'm looking forward to it, but it'll be slow-going with the three dogs and Ella. But, we're thinking that Stephen is going to have about a month off for winter, so that will fun. We'll be in FL while Boston is going through the worst part of winter. So, we'll get our fill of snow before hand and then get a nice break.
Well, there are our plans for the next few months. Sorry for boring you, but I'm getting really excited!

Time is flying by!

Originally posted on September 14, 2005.

Sept. 14th, 2005. Sept. 14, 2005?!?! Wow, it just dawned on me today how much my life has changed in such a short period of time. It seems like just yesterday I was in Florida and in college. And then I was pregnant!! That was such a great moment when I found out I was pregnant. Stephen and I had been trying for 8 months and we were getting a little worried. Sadly enough, we were both secretly afraid it was one of our faults that we hadn't gotten pregnant yet. Needless to say, we were both relieved and VERY happy to find out we were going to be parents. Now, I feel like the pregnany flew by, yet I quickly remember how miserable I was throughout the pregnancy except for the 4th & 5th month. That was the only time I was comfortable. Anyway, I guess what I'm saying is...all of a sudden I'm a mom, and then we move, and now we've already been here for a little over a month!

On Sept. 10 Ella hit her 3 month mark. I feel like she'll be driving before I know it! She has grown so fast and she's changed so much since we've gotten to Boston. I feel like her family in FL won't even know who she is when they see her next time. She gets more beautiful every day and it's amazing how she does something new almost every day, too. She's so curious about everything and everyone. She smiles and giggles all the time and she l-o-v-e-s sucking on her fist and/or fingers. She is definitely not a pacifier baby. She has no interest in those at all, which I guess it great! I obviously have those fears about whether or not she may be behind in certain things, etc., but at this point, I guess you can't really be behind. Babies don't really roll over until about 4 months on average, yet the fact that Ella does not like tummy-time, I'm afraid it may be a little long for her. Then I fear that she'll start crawling later, which means she'll walk later, which means she'll be potty trained later, etc., etc. And yes, I know this is all ridiculous. All babies progress differently and Ella is perfectly healthy and obviously smart, so I have nothing to worry about. I do wish we were still in FL so Ella could hang out with one of her friends that she hasn't even met yet! Our friends Bridget and Luis had a baby girl a couple days after Ella was born and they live in Orlando. I would love to see Ella and Analise together. I wonder what that would be like and if they would lay next to each other on the floor and at least notice each other. That would be really cool.

Anyway, it's times like these when I start feeling old even though I'm only 24. I can't imagine Ella not being a baby, but I know she'll be a teenager before I know it. What I really can't imagine is Stephen and I growing older. For some reason I think of us being 24 and 26 while we're teaching Ella how to drive. Now, that would be weird!

Oh, before I close, WARNING! Britney Spears has given birth to a baby boy. Run away, run away! You know that kid was saying, "Please! Please! Leave me in here for another 9 months!"

A Week in Review

Originally posted on September 22. 2005.

OK, I wrote this blog once and somehow it got lost. So, here it goes again...

...Wow, what a week we've had! I'm finally getting time to sit down and soak in everything that went on and actually get some rest. Here's a recap. Last Thurs. my best friend Aleta was to arrive at Logan International Airport at 11:30am from NC. Unfortunately, she missed her 9:30am flight due to traffic and had book another flight that would leave NC at 11:15am, but it wouldn't be direct. She would have to change planes at JFK in NY. She arrived in NY at 12:50pm and was to leave for Boston at 1:20pm, but her flight was delayed due to weather. Finally, after being on the tarmac for a 3 and 1/2 hours, they took the plane back to the terminal mainly because they needed to re-fuel. But, while they were there, they decided that they were not going to get the plane out that night, so they officially cancelled the flight. The airline charted a bus to take the passengers to Logan Airport. Aleta called and said they officially left JFK at 6:10pm and that the driver said it would be about 4.5 to 5 hours and that they would be stopping for a break, too. Our orginial plans were to go to the Red Sox/A's game that night at Fenway, so since Aleta wasn't going to be able to make it, we asked Dr. O'Bryan (who got into town Wed. afternoon) if he would like to come. So, we all headed to Fenway (with Ella, too!) and we decided that depending on when the game ended we would just take the T to the airport and pick Aleta up. We weren't expecting her any earlier than 11pm. Well, due to rain earlier in the day, the game was delayed 45 minutes and didn't start until 7:50pm. By the time the 8th inning came around, the Sox were losing 6-2 and we were getting bored (while Ella was getting tired). Our seats weren't very good either. It was really great to go to a REAL ballpark and watch baseball. It's a really old stadium, I believe it was built in 1912, so the ambience was great. But, I'm used to sitting behind home plate. We had seats in right field and it was really hard to tell what was going on in the infield. Anyway, we decided to leave and I just happened to check my cell phone to see what time it was. It was 10:38pm and I saw that I had voicemail. I figured it was Aleta checking in to tell us where she was. Well, her message said that it was 10:20pm and that she had just gotten to Logan! Holy Crap! I felt horrible. I did not want her to have to wait even more after what she'd been through that day. So, we left immediately and walked back to Dr. O'Bryan's hotel and took the T to the airport. We finally made it to the T station at the airport at 11:30pm. We didn't make it home until midnight and didn't get to bed until 1:30am. Sorry Aleta!

Fri. morning we met up with Dr. O'Bryan and his Seminole crew (they were up here for the FSU/BC game) at their hotel where they were eating breakfast. We were supposed to meet them at 10am to eat with them, but those freakin' morons who work on our house whenever they feel like it showed up at 9:15am as we were getting ready to leave! Anyway, after watching them eat, their group split up and Dr. O'Bryan and his wife, Ann, came with us to do some sight-seeing. We first went to a church in Back Bay that had been around since the late 1700's and had just finished a $50 million renovation. Unfortunately, the tour wasn't going on that day, but every Fri. at 12:15pm they have a organ concert (this church is known for it's organ and it's thousands of pipes). Apparently every Fri. different people from all over the world come to play this organ for 30 minutes. It ended up being a National Day of Prayer so we had a prayer for the victims of Hurricane Katrina before the concert began. While the concert was cool, I was ready to get out of there by the 3 song (there were 5 total). Afterwards, we walked to the Museum of Art and saw the Ansel Adams display. This guy is known for his black and white pictures. I'm not a big art person, but some of his photography was really neat. They looked like paintings with some of the effects that were in the pictures, but it was just different ways he took the pictures or different kind of film he used that made those effects. By the time we were finished with this part of the museum we were starving and Dr. O'Bryan and his wife were ready to head back to their hotel to rest before our big evening. So, they left and we headed to the Cheesecake Factory for lunch...YUM!! By, the time we got home we had 20 minutes to change and get ready to meet up with Dr. O'Bryan and his crew to go to The Blue Man Group show. And Aleta was gracious enough to babysit Ella for the night. Now, I had no idea what to expect, but I had heard that it was a great show with percussion and comedy. I won't give anything away, but if you happen to go (they're in Chicago, Boston, NY, Las Vegas, and Berlin) here's some advice: wear the ponchos that they provide for you! After the show, Dr. O'Bryan and his wife to us to a restaurant that they thought was Italian by it's name. It wasn't, but it was still delicious. It ended up being the most expensive dinner (per meal) we had ever had, but hey, we had a great time hanging out with them. But, by the time I was finished with my meal I was totally exhausted. I could've fallen asleep right there at the table. We got home at 11:30pm and learned that Ella had a rough night. She was overly tired from the past couple nights and was really fussy. And apparently that made Aleta think twice about having kids in the near future.
Saturday! Saturday! Saturday! ...we slept in. Today was the big football day and I was so excited for the UF/UT game that night. I woke up in time to watch College GameDay on ESPN and hear them pick UF over UT. WooHoo! By noon we left to go down to the Prudential Center to buy tickets for the Boston Duck Tour. We heard a lot of neat things about the tour and were very excited to go on it. Unfortunately, the tour was sold out until 5pm. The tour is approx. 80 minutes, so we figured that would give us enough time to make it to the store to get some dinner before the game and get back to fix it by 8pm. So, until 5pm, we ate at Chili's for lunch and shopped around Copley Place and the Prudential Center...well, I should say Aleta shopped. The Duck Tour finally came and unfortunately, I have to say it was overrated. Maybe it was because of our driver. He didn't seem interested on giving us the full history of things. He was more interested in being funny. So, we'll have to go on it again when we have more company visit. We were done with the tour at 6:10pm (a little early) and made it to Shaw's to pick up some steaks and potatoes. We got home around 7pm and were able to watch the end of the Miami game which had gone into OT. We were hoping they would lose, but they eeked out a W right at the last minute. Finally, the UF game started and I'm happy to say that we won and it was a strong outing, too! It was very nice to see us play well and to not have poor officiating lose the game for us like it did last year in TN. Well, we were all tired and went to bed shortly after the game was over. We had to wake up early the next morning to take Aleta to the airport.
VERY early Sun. morning we took Aleta to the airport for her 7am flight. I'm happy to say this flight was as smooth as it could be and she got home quickly. It sucked that her trip was so fast and we were so exhausted the whole time and the weather sucked so we weren't able to show her a lot of Boston. She'll just have to come back again! Well, we came back home and slept all day. We woke up briefly to check football scores and check on the race, but we mostly slept. Went to church at 7pm, wasn't much to write home about and came home and went to bed fairly late since we slept all day.
Since then, I can briefly say that I've been doing nothing. Just resting and chilling out at home. Oh wait, I almost forgot. We noticed Gator had a growth on his right, rear rump area and at first I thought it might be a histiocytoma which he had when he was younger and they're completely benign, but this seemed to be bothering him and the one he had previously did not bother him at all. So on Tues. we took him to the vet. and he didn't really think it was a histiocytoma although there was a slight chance it could be. He was concerned about the fact that it was bothering him as well and said that with him being 2 1/2 y.o. it's less likely to be a histiocytoma. So, yesterday I took him back and he had surgery to remove the mass and they sent it off to figure out what it is. So, we have to wait about 5 days to hear back from the vet. But, poor Gator. It was harder on him than I thought. He was pretty out of it for the rest of the day and he has a bald butt...he looks like one of those baboons with the bald butts. You could tell he didn't feel well. He looked so sad. He seems to be a little better this morning, but he's starting to lick at his sutures and I'm trying to make him stop because I don't want him to have to wear an e-collar!
Well, that's been my week...a whirlwind, I know. You'll be hearing from me this weekend. We'll be doing some more painting...or I should say, I'll be doing some more painting. And UF plays Kentucky this weekend. Another W for the Gators! I believe you'll be seeing us in the National Championship...I hope! It's Great to Be a Florida Gator!

Where's all the sweet tea?!?!

Originally posted on September 9, 2005.

OK...I had heard about this before moving up north, but now that I'm up here I still don't understand it. Why don't these people know what sweet tea is and/or how to make it?!?! The first day in town, Stephen, Angela, Robby, and I went to lunch in the midst of all the unpacking and I 'mistakenly' asked for a sweet tea. The waitress looked at me like I was on crack. She said, "What's that?" So, we explained to her that down south we brew our tea with sugar in it and that it tastes better that way then putting sugar in it afterwards while it's cold. Since then, I still have not found a restaurant that has sweet tea...not even chains that have restaurants down south like Bennigan's or Chili's. So, the sad part about this story is that I surprisingly found sweet tea at Quizno's in Brookline. But's not their brewed iced tea that's sweetened, it's bottled tea by Lipton. But, you know what? It's better than most brewed sweet tea that I get down south because it's not too sweet! Sometimes sweet tea is just too sweet and I'm sure all of you southerners know what I'm talking about. I'm sure there are some of you who are wondering why I don't just make my own sweet tea at home...well, I just haven't gotten around to it yet. Our place is still a wreck, especially the kitchen. But, I will be working on that first thing tomorrow! Anyway, if any of y'all want to send me some sweet tea so I don't have to make it myself, that would be great! Just kidding!

September 11 revisited

Originally posted on September 11, 2005.

There are a lot of things on my mind tonight, please bare with me. First off, my husband and I just finished watching the documentary of Flight 93 on the Discovery Channel. I didn't expect it to effect me as much as it did. Hearing first hand accounts from family members and hearing the actual calls that the people on board made to loved ones made it more real to me than ever before. It was sad to learn the backgrounds of the 40 men and women who were on that flight. They all seemed like wonderful people, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, daughters, sons, grandparents, etc. The documentary said that the youngest person on board was a 20 year old college student, yet to me the youngest person on board was a 3 month old fetus who was in the womb of a women who had been trying to get pregnant for 5 years. That really tore me up. Becoming a mother has definitely changed me and anything like that rips at my heart. Obviously, it is horrible that any of these people had to die, no matter what age or background. And seeing re-enactments of what supposedly went on was a little much for me and had me saying to myself to the TV "do this!" or "do that!" and I had to remind myself that this was not a movie for me to yell at the actors and tell them to do what I would do. I couldn't imagine being on that plane. Part of me thinks that I would be so upset and so determined to not die that I would totally kick some a$$ no matter what the cost. But, then part of me thinks that I would just be paralyzed with fear that I wouldn't do anything!

I definitely don't want to end this on a sad note, but I definitely want to remember these people and everyone else who died in this tragic event. I'm glad that the past 3 years there have been special shows and events to memorialize Sept. 11 because I'm afraid that everyone besides the victims' families have 'gotten over it', in a manner of speaking. I also do not want to make this about othe current events and talk about things that are highly disputable (i.e., the war), but Sept. 11th also reminds me of the fact that we still need to be fighting terrorism...WHEREVER it is. And I don't care whether people believe that we went into Iraq for oil (which is obviously not true) or for supposed WMD's. The fact is that we got a horrible ruler out of office AND have helped a lot of Iraqi's even though the media doesn't show that. And more terrorists have come out the woodworks over there, so we still need to be doing something about it! Do I think our plan wasn't planned out well enough? Yes! We went in w-a-y too fast, made everything look easy, and then wasn't prepared for the rest of the problems we're facing over there. But, I also believe that we should be focusing more on Afghanastan. We don't hear about that fight anymore and it is frustrating that it seems we're no closer to finding Bin Laden and it doesn't make any sense to me that we aren't just a little bit closer at least!
OK, I'll get off my soapbox. The last bit of this blog was not meant to offend anyone who has different opinions. Feel free to respond and leave comments. But, as I say that, if you're one of those people who believe we should bend over and take it up the rear because you believe sticking up for ourselves is "not the answer", then please don't bother.

Home Alone

Originally posted on September 7, 2005.

Stephen started classes yesterday. It was really weird to home alone for most of the day after Stephen has had three months off. But, I need to make use of this time to get things organized as people are going to start visiting us next week. I'm really excited to have company and I'm even more excited by the fact that it will make us finally get organized instead of being lazy. We have a problem of working really hard one whole day into the early morning and then not wanting to do anything for the next few days. It's really hard to get anything accomplished that way. And with Stephen is class now, he's obviously tired when he gets home and isn't ready to work on stuff, so I can really only sue him on the weekends, which he'll definitely want to sleep in! Anyway, I'm hoping by this Sun. all the unpacked boxes will either be unpacked or stored in the basement. My OB/GYN and Stephen's preceptor during his 3rd year OB/GYN rotation, Dr. O'Bryan, is coming into town with his wife on the 14th. He'll be in town to do some sight-seeing and he's also going to the FSU/BC game on the the 17th (GO BC!). He's taking us out either Thurs. night or Fri. night to see the Blue Man Group. I'm really excited to see them. I hear it's a great show! And my best friend Aleta is coming into town on the 15th from NC. And she has graciously offered to babysit the night we go out with Dr. O'Bryan, which takes a load off of us to find a babysitter. I was really dreading that since we don't know anyone here!!
Anyway, I'm so excited to see both of them. Dr. O'Bryan is literally the best doctor I've ever had. He's also the first male doctor I've ever had and I was so terrified to see him for the first time, but as soon as I got pregnant I knew I should go to him. Stephen knew him well and said he was a great person as well as a great doctor. He was also voted Tallahassee's #1 doctor in 2004. It saddens me to know that he won't be able to deliver our next baby since we won't be living in Tallahassee when I decide to have another one. But, hopefully we'll stay close. I know he cares a lot about Stephen and what he's going to do with his life. And I'm so excited for Aleta to get here because I really need some girl-time. I can't remember the last time I had girl-time! It will be nice to hang out in Boston and do all the girl-things I've been wanting to do that Stephen never wants to do. It will be really nice to have her around and Ella will get to know her "Aunt Hoochy-mama" who isn't a "hoochy-mama" anymore, but I still like to call her that!

Working on Labor that what they mean by irony?

Originally posted on September 5, 2005.

After resting yesterday, I decided to work...on Labor Day. I'm sick of the baby not having her room setup, so I started painting. Unfortunately, I just wasn't up to it. I think I got more paint on myself than I did on the wall. I'm usually not like that. And what sucks even more is that I'm going to have to do a second coat. I got away with not doing a second coat in the bathroom, but no such luck in the nursery. It's probably because it's such a light color. Anyway, I'm sure Ella will be happy to have her crib and get her beautiful nursery back. She's a bit older now, too, so I think she'll enjoy it more. Oh, and I ran out of paint! So, I have to go get some more. Meanwhile, Stephen, Ella and I are watching the FSU-Miami game. (Go Miami! - lesser of the two evils.) Unfortunately, FSU is winning 10-0 and Miami is looking pretty bad. So, I don't think FSU is necessarily great, they're just playing a weak team. Hopefully Miami will pick it up here soon.

Yes, I'm a snob!

Originally posted on September 4, 2005.

Whew...we finally finished our bathroom at 2am this morning. Who knew painting a small bathroom, changing out the sink and putting in a new medicine cabinet and light would take over 15 hours?!?! Really, the only reason it took that long was because of the sink. We switched out a really cheaply built vanity (sink and cabinet combo) with a nice pedestal sink. It's amazing how much bigger (and better for that matter) it makes the bathroom look. And all of our hardware was switched from the standard ugly brass look to a brushed nickel that looks really modern. But, we're so exhausted now. Unfortunately, we slept through church time and didn't really get out of the house until a little after 3pm. We went to a School of Public Health gathering at 4pm and let me tell you, all the stereo-types about Ivey leaguers are TRUE! First off, when we left, we were still the only true Americans at the gathering. And every other person that was there were Quantitative Method students as opposed to Stephen, who is a Policy and Management student. They were not very social or maybe they just didn't understand us. And instead of playing football, which Stephen and I wanted to play, they all wanted to play soccer. So, we left around 5pm and headed down to Harvard Square where there are more stereo-typical Ivey leaguers, yet there was alot more to do and we didn't HAVE to talk to these people.
Yes, the snob in me is coming out. I am not into the big city where you have tons of different nationalities (mainly because they can't adjust to our culture so therefore they insist we adjust to theirs)! But, I'm definitely more comfortable in the big city where there are Fortune 500 companies all around (skyscrapers) and high-class shopping at every corner. I do not fit in with people who LOVE going to school and would rather have their nose in a book. And these students are not comfortable around babies...or maybe they just don't care. Anyway, it's hard for me to get to the area in Boston where I'm comfortable because traveling in this city by myself with a baby is NOT easy. Therefore, I'm stuck waiting for Stephen to take me places, and he doesn't usually want to go where I want to go. But, I promise you this: I will not be going to anymore MPH gatherings.


Originally posted on September 3, 2005.

Sorry, it's been a few days. My husband and I have been busy redoing some things in our house now that we finally closed...oh yeah, we closed. Anyway, there were a few things that were very cheaply done, especially in the bathroom, so we decided to put a little but more money into hoping that it will help us when we "flip it" in May of next year.
My real reason for blogging tonight is to say: GO GATORS!! 6pm marked the first game of the 2005 College football season for the Florida Gators and their new head coach, Urban Meyer (love that name). I've been waiting all year for tonight. We even purchased ESPN GamePlan on our satellite so we can watch all the non-important games that aren't televised on the major networks. If we hadn't purchased ESPN GamePlan we probably wouldn't be seeing a lot of Gator games since we're in ACC nation up here and their idea of a good team is Boston College. Anyway, we're playing our cake game tonight against Wyoming. Right now it's the 3rd quarter and we're winning 26-7. I'm sure we'll score a couple more touchdowns. Next Sat. we play another easy game and then we'll start hittin' the big boys. Sept. 17 we play Tennessee...that will bea good game. They're ranked higher than we are at this point, but I think they're overrated. They're always overrated. Anyway, we'll be at McFadden's in Boston that day to watch the big game. That is the official place to watch Gator games. The New England Gator Club meets there every Sat. It should be fun. If you're in the area, please join us! And for those of you who can't make it I'll make sure to e-mail pics of Ella partying in her Baby Gator outfit.
Well, I'm going to watch the rest of the game before I have to start working again. Hope all is well with everyone. have to do it yourself!

Originally posted on August 30, 2005.

OK, 15 minutes after my last blog the satellite guy showed up. I knew from the moment I saw him that he was either going to make some excuse for why he couldn't install our satellite dish or he was going to do a crappy job since it was almost 5pm. Sure enough he said that he wasn't sure we could get the reception we needed to get all the channels and that we definitely wouldn't be able to receive any HD channels because of trees. Give me a break!! I'm from Florida where there are a hell of a lot more trees and we lived in a one story house and we were still able to have satellite. How can it be possible that a satellite installed on a two-story house can't be made to avoid tree-lines? So, the guy said he would send someone else out the next morning who had a longer ladder so they could see if they could find a better position, i.e., this guy didn't want to do any work. So, thankfully someone did show up this morning and said that we could install the satellite on a chimney on the roof (apparently there are two and we have to use the back chimney, which is taller) and that we should get all of the channels, but we may not get the HD channels. I don't care at this point. I just want to watch TV! I can't live without HD for 9 months...besides, it's a rip-off anyway. He left saying he would be right back because he had to go get special nails to put the satellite in the chimney. This was at is now 12:40pm and he still hasn't returned. Thankfully he left his ladder here, so I know he'll be back I just wish he would hurry up!!

Yeah, I'm back in the 21st century!

Originally posted on August 30, 2005.

I know you're sick of reading about this, but I just wanted to update you (again!) and let you know that we have, I mean, we have satellite!! WooHoo! Now I feel like I'm a part of the world again. I know some people probably think that it's ridiculous to say how important TV is, but when you've been without it for a month and you're trying to get to know a town and can't even watch their local news and have no idea what's going on down south where your family is, it gets old. But, I am a spoiled brat, too. I will not deny that at all. OH! And we're closing on our place tonight. Out of the blue our lawyer calls us this morning and the seller wants to do everything he can now to close because he sold the upstairs unit. So, we agreed, but we're withholding $5000 until all the repairs are finished. And again, no one showed up today to continue working on those repairs. Seriously, how hard is it to get things done? I mean these people could've been through with us a long time ago if they would just take the time to finish these little details.
Anyway, this will be my last blog about our stupid place, unless of course something even more ridiculous takes place while we're trying to get the repairs finished. But, from now on I'll be talking about my family and other things that are important to me. Iv'e yet to dote on my daughter or tell you about our three dogs. And I'm sure I'll plently to tell you about my husband's MPH program and all the so-called "smart" Harvard students. Not to say that my husband isn't smart and doesn't belong here, but it's amazing to walk down the street and see the stereo-typical Harvard student (i.e., Asian, wears glasses, has their nose in a book, pocket protector, etc.). Today was Stephen's first day of orientation. So, he had to do mundane things like get a temporary student ID, campus tour, etc. I think he has to go to a math review session tomorrow since most of the people getting MPH's are already docs or other career people who haven't taken math classes in a while. So, that should be nice and boring!
Before I close, I would like to let you know that the people of LA, MS, and AL and in my thoughts and prayers. Being from FL I understand hurricanes, but I could never in my life imagine dealing with what these people are dealing with right now. Now that I have telelvision which is something that these people won't have for a while, I can keep up to date with all of these tragic events. I don't know if that's a curse or a blessing, but I will be in constant prayer.

If you want something done right...

Originally posted on August 29, 2005.

UPDATE! So, this morning workers were supposed to come by and finish fixing things around the condo that needed fixing before closing (which is scheduled for tomorrow). And we're supposed to get our DirecTV hooked up today...FINALLY! Well, this morning no one showed up. So, we talked to our paralegal at the lawyers office and said that we were NOT closing tomorrow. So, closing is now set for Fri. (remember, the original closing date was Aug. 25). My husband also called Sam, the contractor who is supposedly working on our place and Sam said that he was waiting for the piece of the siding that he had to pre-order to come in and they should be here around noon tomorrow, so he would come then and all the work should be finished by Wed. night. WHATEVER!! So, in the meantime, we're waiting for DirecTV to come and install our satellite and who shows up at 3pm...Sam and his crew. So, as we're chilling and not expecting anyone, they come and start banging away on our hardwood floors to take up slabs that need replaced all while the baby is trying to sleep. So, it is now 4:15pm and they have finishe repairing the floor and will be back tomorrow afternoon. Meanwhile, the DirecTV people still have no showed up and they said they would be here between 1 and 5pm. What is up with this place? No one is reliable and everything has to be done the difficult way. It's really frustrating and I'm trying not to think it's just the area since I've had problems like this down south, but one thing after another is ridiculous! I'll keep you updated.

JP's a good thing!

Originally posted on August 27, 2005.

YUMMY - - JP LICKS!! Ok, so, I've already eaten here about 6 times and I'm finally getting around to writing about it. For those who don't live in the Boston area, JP Licks is a local ice cream shop that orginated in Jamaica Plain (hence the JP). Now, where I'm from, I'm used to Cold Stone Creamery, which I still love. But, JP Licks has some great flavors that I haven't seen anywhere else (Cucumber ice cream?!?! Who knew?!?!). They also have Sorbet, Sherbet, and Frozen Yogurt. They also roast their own coffee! They have a really cool machine in the back of the place and you can watch the machine do the roasting. It smells soooo good. My favorite flavor right now is Coffee Oreo ice cream. But, seriously, there is something there for everyone! They even have a Kahlua flavored ice cream in it with real Kahlua liqueur...very yummy as well. There are other JP Licks shops around the area, but the one in JP on Centre Street is the original. I definitely recommend this to anyone who is visiting the area because I'm sure if you live here you've already had some.


Originally posted August 25, 2005.

Today, my husband and I decided to get out of the busy city and drive up the coast. We ended up in Gloucester and Rockport, MA. If you didn't recognize the first city's name, it is known from the book and movie "The Perfect Storm". It was really interesting to see the town and the harbor that the movie was filmed in and to know that that was the real place where these events took place back in 1991. But, what impressed me most was how beautiful it was. I'm from South Florida where I'm used to beautiful ocean water and palm trees and nice white sand. But, this was just as beautiful, but in a different way. The water was dark, but not in a dirty looking way. It was a pretty midnight blue color and instead of white sand there were pretty rocks on the shore and it was so breath-taking seeing the ocean water beat up against them. The houses are also amazing. I still haven't gotten used to the way Boston houses are set up. Here there are old colonial homes that have a lot of character and are really cool, but each floor is divided up into a condo-style apartment and multiple families live in one house. It was nice to see "normal" houses again in Goucester and Rockport. They were all beautiful colonial-style homes with colorful and well-kept landscaping with great views of the ocean. I could seriously live there for the rest of my life.
I think it would be great to visit there again and stay at a bed and breakfast and really get to know and enjoy the town and scenery. I will have to look into that because my husband and I could sure use a mini-vacation. All that said, we didn't eat at the Crow's Nest, which is the actual restaurant that was portrayed in the movie that was owned my the mother of one of the men who was lost at sea during the storm. I believe she died a few years ago, but the restaurant is still open. I'm sure they're used to tourists coming in and wanting some piece of the story. I'm definitely curious to go back and eat there. To finish this blog, I would highly recommend anyone visiting Gloucester - whether you live in MA or whether you visiting Boston, Cape Cod, or wherever. It's definitely a treat, but I would also recommend you going in the Summer or early Fall.

We're here...

Originally posted on August 24, 2005.

Hello Boston (and anyone else who may be reading this)! I have now been in Boston (or Jamaica Plain to be more precise) since August 11th. To give you and idea of how things have just not been going well, I just got my internet working last night. I'm going to take the short time that I'll be here in JP to give reviews on places I eat and things I see and do. I will also use this to keep my friends and family updated on what's going on with my husband and daughter.
To start off, I'll explain why I moved to Boston from Tallahassee, FL. My husband is a fourth year medical student at Florida State University and he decided that he wanted to get an MPH (Masters in Public Health) because he really has a passion for the underserved community and for the millions of uninsured, especially the uinsured kids, of America. I'm very proud to say that he was accepted to Harvard (as well as Johns Hopkins and Duke) and his program is only 9 months long due to the fact that he is getting his MD as well. Otherwise, it would've been a 2 year degree. So...after the process of trying to find a place to live with 3 dogs (which was a pain in the butt even though we were buying a place) we packed up our house in Tallahassee (which is now seeming so HUGE - 1209 sq. ft. vs. our 750 sq. ft. condo we are living in now). But don't think for a moment that from there everything as easy. The day we moved we realized that our moving truck was too small to fit all of our boxes. So, after loading the truck as much as possible, we had to take 29 boxes to UPS and ship them to Boston (approx. $1000). On the way back from the UPS store, somehow that back of the moving truck wasn't shut properly and my 2-month old clothes dryer fell out onto N. Monroe Street. While my husband turned around to go back for it to wait for our brother-in-law to come back with the moving truck, someone had already put it in the back of THEIR truck!!! Thankfully, my husband was able to stop them and we got our dryer back, with some dents. My husband and brother-in-law started off for Boston around 4:30pm on the 9th of August. Along the way Stephen was communication with our Realtor up in Boston and the lawyer that is dealing with our condo purchase. Through this communication we find out that we may not have a place to live when we get there because the owner had yet to sign the final purchase and sale agreement even though we were told this was done a few days prior. We were also waiting on certain things to be fixed in the condo before we closed (which was supposed to be on the 25th). Nothing had been touched. So, Stephen made the decision to pull out of the deal since the owner was in breach of contract. As soon as we were getting ready to pull out the owner signed the P&S agreement. So, Stephen and our brother-in-law got to Boston on the 10th around 11:30pm. Pretty good timing if you ask me, especially for traveling through some very busy cities.
On August 11th I flew up with our daughter and Stephen's sister. We arrive around 11:15am and didn't get home until close to 1pm due to traffic and getting lost (even though we only live about 10 min. from the airport). We get to the condo and the smallness of it really hits me! But, it's livable. We'll all just be really close and comfy during the cold winter. As we are unloading the truck and unpacking, we notice that there is no phone line in the whole place! What is up with that?!?! Doesn't that come standard in the 21st century?!?! So, therefore, we can't hook up our phones, internet, or our satellite TV, which leads me to today. Since we've moved in, we've finally gotten our phone line put in and have a phone, although the only calls we get are wrong numbers and like I said previously, if it's not obvious already, we have our DSL - finally!! And yeah, and the closing that's supposed to be happening tomorrow at 2pm...not happening because the owner is now having title problems. I haven't met this guy yet, but he sounds like a real winner to me!
As we stand, we're hopefully going to close by the 29th, which is also the day that we'll finally get our DirecTV set up! Woo Hoo! Stephen's orientation starts on the 29th as well and lasts the whole week. His classes don't officially start until the Tues. after Labor Day. So, I will then be home alone more often doing the mommy-thang and hanging out with the dogs. I'm looking forward to the cooler weather and the changing seasons. In my next blog, I will go ahead and fill you in on the places we've eaten so far and the Boston attractions we've been to. Maybe this will end up being more of a travel blog!

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Hello from's freezing up here!

This is my first time blogging on Blogspot. I usually blog on Yahoo!360, but I've decided to branch out and try and let more of my friends and family read my postings. So, I will take the time to copy my previous blogs from back in August '05 over to Blogspot in case anyone has the time to read about what we've been doing since we've moved to Beantown.

I will continue to write about my parenting 'skills' and all of my wonderful and not-so-wonderful experiences of being a mother. And I'll also fill you in on the wild and unrelenting journey of being married to a soon-to-be medical doctor. For those of you who may not know, taking a year off to get a Masters degree in the middle of medical school isn't 'normal'. Yes, other people do it, but it's not the, of course, my husband would do it!

I welcome any feedback...good or bad. But, if you dish it out please be willing to take it! :)

More to come...