Sunday, December 31, 2006

Day 11: Happy New Year and Dylan Turns Four Months Old

Technically I was in the bathroom brushing my teeth at midnight. I tried to brush in a festive manner though. We went out to a nice dinner where there were enough people that I didn't have to hold Dylan for more than a few minutes at a time so I could focus on important things like stuffing myself.

Speaking of stuffing myself, Tommy and I gave into temptation and tasted one of Snuffy's treats. They look and smell like a lovely peanut butter cookie, and all the ingredients are regular people food ingredients, so we can't be blamed. (they are not that good, but I think we've performed a public service so no one else has to try them)

Dylan has really been in a good mood for most of our trip, so that has been nice. She is also back to sleeping better again lately, which makes a big difference in both of our moods. I haven't done any work, which is bad. I think this month is going to be ugly. We head back home tomorrow and try again with daycare on Wednesday.

Our new four month old baby, now with screeching action

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Day 9: NYC to Ithaca

In the morning we loaded up our 500 pounds of luggage and were on our way. Dylan slept much of the way in the car, and only had one real meltdown, so that was great. We had such a great time in Manhattan seeing tons of friends and family.

In other news, I moved Dylan up to the next diaper size (size 3 if you're interested, the big fatty -- at this rate she'll be in Depends before she's toilet trained). I thought the old size was a little on the small side and the new one would be a little big. I now realize that she probably outgrew the old size a week or two ago and the new ones fit perfectly. I wondered why they were suddenly leaking so much.

Day 8: We Recover From Day 7

We took it easy a lot of the day, then ventured out for a walk in the later afternoon. We did some light shopping and Dylan charmed everyone she saw from her perch in the baby bjorn. She has been in a happy and playful mood for the past few days, and it has been really fun. Sadly though, the book Dylan seems to be reading says that she'll only really have a couple of weeks of happiness before another month of crankiness. She has been sleeping pretty poorly this whole time too, which has made it a lot harder to take. Last night though she had a great night, like she had for most of the first three months.

Ben cooked us a delicious fancy meal for dinner, which was great. Dylan cranked her way through the whole thing, but much as she might try she can't stop me from eating.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Day 6: Ithaca to NYC

It again took until noon to get ourselves out of the house. The ride went well for the most part. We switched to a convertible carseat from the infant one because we thought it might be more comfortable and lead to less screaming. Dylan did great for many hours until we hit traffic waiting to get on the GW bridge. She SCREAMED for the last half hour and was not interested in me or my lion and what the hell was I thinking trying to entertain her with toys and books and antics.

Snuffy is staying in Ithaca this time (due to: would rather go 24 hours without pooping than go on pavement). It was so weird to have a car ride without him. I kept looking back for his fluffy head only to see our luggage luxuriantly spread out around the car because we didn't have to leave space for him and his stuff.

I have stuffed myself full of pizza chocolate mousse cake, which makes it a good night.

Day 5: We Eat and Eat

That pretty much says it all. We had a nice time. Dylan is going to be the most spoiled child ever.

we got one we got one we got one

We're in NYC now, post about the drive down to follow. On the way though, we got a call (which woke up the baby since we had the ringer on really loud) that my dad and Tommy had gotten a Wii for us. We thought because it was a day after Christmas that they had magically become plentiful, but it turned out they were pretty lucky. They had wandered into EB Games to get something else, and my dad happened to ask when they would next be getting Wiis. They said, oh, we've got them right now, would you like one? So of course they scooped it up. They don't advertise it because they're within the mall and don't want people lining up. Tommy called his friend, who got there 15 minutes later, and they were sold out by then. We won't get to meet it in person for a few days since we're not in Ithaca, but we've spoken to it on the phone. It's good we got one though, because Aaron has been playing with this for that last couple of days and it's been sort of pathetic:

Monday, December 25, 2006

Day 4: The Christmas Evening

I've ruined Christmas. I forgot the cookies and they all buuuuuuuurned. We ate them all afternoon anyway, but I still consider Christmas to be ruined.

We foolishly did a big Wegmans trip yesterday. I think it was actually at capacity. Every single parking space was taken and every single cashier was open and every square inch of the store had a cart in it. It was the fun kind of trip where it's like in Supermarket Sweep where you just go around grabbing things because there's so much food to be made.

Dylan has had some kind of epiphany in the past couple of days. She can really use her hands a lot better, and can spin the damn lion all by herself over and over and over. Wait, is that progress? Also, her head grew about three sizes (like the scene at the end of the grinch where his heart grows there sizes so it doesn't fit in that little box anymore) and that pig hooded towel that I took pictures of her just recently doesn't even fit anymore. She was much happier today than she has been in a few weeks, and really engaged with people and toys.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Day 3 : Tully to Ithaca

We had to made a quick departure from Tully when Lord Upchuck paid a visit. The drive was only 45 minutes, so that wasn't too bad.

Snuffy received this lovely gift and has been carrying it around for hours (the red splotch is a Swarthmore decal):

Dylan hasn't been sleeping enough lately, so she is tired and cranky a lot. As am I.

Day 2: Deep in the Heart of Tully

The hounds are getting restless. Provisions are running low.

Dylan received this as a gift, which was either a mistake or an attempt to stop the crying while still enjoying the pretty baby eyes.

Uncle Zach is desperately in love with Dylan, so we pawned her off on him while we went out for cigarettes and beer.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Day 1 of our Epic Journey: Rochester to Tully

We didn't actually get out of the house until 4pm. We can tell ourselves it was because Aaron had a 2pm meeting, but that would just be lying to ourselves, wouldn't it?

The car trip went well. We can generally keep Dylan asleep or happy for about two hours in the carseat and then all is lost. Luckily this leg of the trip was only two hours long. The Ithaca to NYC leg is another story.

Anyway, the loot! The loot! I've figured out we've got the best scam ever going. You know how parents get divorced and the kids get twice as many presents? Well, Dylan's got Aaron's divorced parents for Hanukkah PLUS my parents for Christmas, plus her own parents. Not to mention various suckers aunts and uncles and friends. Last night she got this and this and Aaron and I got one of these (not a winning one though, ahem, David) and this for our future hypothetical Wii and I got this.

Oh yeah, plus lots of love and affection and whatever.

The 2000lb Snuffy hoist

What cool corduroys you have, my dear

Dylan sports a lovely Silk Oak onesie

Putting the bathtub on the counter: not a good idea

Thursday, December 21, 2006


Guess who's up and running again? Check out BadAnnie15's adventures in Morocco over on the sidebar.

We're sick

Which means 1) no daycare! 2) I get to use the snot sucker for the first time.

I am far crankier about it than Dylan. Although it is sort of pathetic to hear her try to breathe through her nose while nursing. But my throat hurts and my nose is running and we're traveling today and wah wah wah.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Daycare, Week 3 Day 3

We are really not making a lot of progress at daycare. I stayed there for a half hour this morning to get Dylan to sleep and it took her that whole time to calm down enough because there's so much going on there, even though at home she would have gone to sleep quite easily at that time. They said that pretty much happens every day. Then she only stays asleep for like 20 minutes because she doesn't like the swings there. So an hour in she's generally exhausted and things just go downhill and once she gets all upset no one has figured any way to get her to calm down besides having her nurse.

We are leaving tomorrow on an epic almost two-week road trip. I'm hoping those two weeks will make a difference and that things will go better once we start up again in January. In the meantime we can work on the bottle and on trying to help Dylan calm down without nursing and I have no idea what else to do. Yesterday when I went to pick her up there was one woman (I think maybe they called in the one person she likes) rocking her trying to give her a bottle while another one operated her elephant over and over (oh yes, there's an elephant version of the beloved lion and she loves them both). She seems to need a 2:1 adult to baby ratio rather than 1:4.

Today when I picked her up, exhausted and whimpering, I took her back to my office for a minute. As soon as my friends came out to talk to her she was all smiles and cooing. Jerk.

Don't be fooled by the sweet pictures, for she is an evil baby monster.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Weekend Update

I'm sure you're all anxious to know about the decision regarding Wii-hunting. We elected for an ill-advised combination of options 1 & 2, which resulted in neither a Wii nor a nice long weekend slumber. Aaron wandered down to Walmart around 7:15 and found that the Wii tickets had been long since given away. We signed up for the lottery that amazon is holding tomorrow, but the odds for that are 28:1.

Baby care has been fairly brutal the past couple of weeks. Dylan has been getting up at 7am regardless of when she went to bed, which ranges from 9 - midnight. The unfortunate part is that if she falls asleep while eating, which happens all the time, we have to either viciously pinch her awake or else hold her upright for at least 90 minutes because she has such bad reflux it will wake her up if she is horizontal before then. This also means that if she naps within an hour or so of eating she only stays asleep for 20-30 minutes. So pretty much she's not napping well and is sleeping less at night, which makes her cranky for a lot of the day. She has also been particularly clingy and needy. I am also cranky because sadly enough I can't function on less than 9 hours of sleep, and the 2-hours of baby-holding-upright-time in the evenigs are cutting into that. Plus daycare still can't handle her for very long, so I still have her for most of the day and can't get any work done. whine whine whine whine whine whine

All three of us appear in a photo at the same time (courtesy of Sol, who luckily has the same camera as us to ensure continuity with the other pictures posted here), thus dispelling the notion that Aaron and I are actually the same person as we are never seen together

Snuffy uses his tongue to woo the ladies

Saturday, December 16, 2006

some thoughts and happenings

I went out to clean up the poop in the backyard yesterday singing "poop collecting, poop collecting" to myself rather loudly. Until I realized that there was someone in the yard a couple houses over. Then I put down the sack of poop to throw a ball for Snuffy and he went and grabbed the poop and ran around with the bag for a while.

If you want Dylan to smile and she doesn't know your face, you will have to work for it. This will involve many entertaining antics and humiliating positions. She will tease you with little smile-like twitches first. And then maybe you'll get one out of her, if you're lucky.

You know how "You." are Time's person of the year? Cnn.com says "You were chosen over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, North Korea's Kim Jong Il and former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Congratulations." Aaron wonders what if you are, for example, former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. That must be confusing.

Speaking of Aaron, I think he has been studying too much because he told me if he doesn't get a Wii this morning he will have to get his belt because he has to get his regression out somehow.


So the super internet is abuzz with rumors that there will be Wiis available tomorrow morning for those who are pure of heart and willing to get up really really early. We generally are willing to get up early for such a cause, but fatface has been causing some sleep deprivation lately. We big ones in the house both get CRANKY and not very functional when we don't sleep enough, so voluntarily losing sleep seems foolish. But video games, they call to us. Please help us resolve this matter.

What should the bleisenblogs do?
sleep sleep sleep
wii wii wii
all of you go! get two!
pollcode.com free polls

heh heh fire heh heh

Dylan is back to not taking nothing no how from the bottle. We lit Hanukkah candles with her yesterday.

She got to (try to) open this cool toy from Saba. She couldn't do it though so Aaron took it for himself.

Here are some highlights from the daily backyard dogfight yesterday:

Friday, December 15, 2006

And we didn't think he'd finish high school

You may remember this trustworthy young man?

He got into college! Early! No more writing of painful painful essays! A ready answer to holiday party questions about his plans for the future! He can use Dylan to pick up college girls!

(he's going to Swarthmore)

We left Dylan at daycare today for three hours because I had a meeting, and the only time I stopped in she was asleep. Every single time I have gone to get her or feed her she has been 1) asleep, 2) screaming, or 3) whimpering because she's too tired to be hysterical anymore. It is draining, to say the least, for me and for her. And I don't get much of a break when she's there because I have to go in so often and I am anxiously waiting for them to call the rest of the time. They took the babies out for a walk today, which she liked. I think they're not used to three month olds who want such constant entertainment. I am sure things will get better for her once she gets more mobile and can eat solids, but in the meantime it's going to be hard.

I got her to (grudgingly) take two ounces of milk from a bottle yesterday, and they got her to take one ounce from a sippy cup today.


Thursday, December 14, 2006


There hasn't been much change lately except that the daycare people understand what they're in for when I walk in. They said they found one of the other teachers who Dylan calms down for. On the one hand, great, because she's not crying. On the other hand, that woman's not actually Dylan's teacher and it makes me feel like if she had the right people there she would be doing a lot better. Not that her current teachers are doing a bad job, but they really don't seem to know what to do with her. And they can't hold her all the time because of all the other kids so sometimes I come in and she's just on the floor sobbing and that's no fun. As it is now I am going in there every 1-1.5 hours to help and calm her down and feed her.

Still working diligently on the bottle, with some small, limited success. I do think it will help once she gets that down. Must go rescue her again.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006


Unfortunately, Dylan has been eaten by a pig. The end.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

So far so good...

Dylan has been at daycare since 8 this morning. I think things are going better this week for a couple of reasons, neither of which includes taking a bottle successfully. One, she is getting used to being there. I don't think she panics quite as much as she did last week when she looks around and sees where she is. Two, the staff is getting to know the nature of the beast (little, cute, wearing polka dot jammies) -- she wants to be held and entertained ALL the time. They are of course not thrilled about that since they have other babies that need tending to also, but at least they are learning how to keep her from losing it. When I went in at 10:30 to feed her, I looked around and little Sammy, let's call him, was gone. Every trace had been erased from his cubby to his crib to his shelf on the fridge. I guess that's the nature of the infant room, but it all seemed to sudden. Once the little buggers are fairly mobile they get booted up to the next room, usually around 8 - 10 months.

I actually went into school today during one of the breaks between sessions at daycare with Dylan. Of course I didn't actually get any work done because the first order of business was to catch up with everyone there.

No video yet, but here's another picture until I can get it to work. Note the stream of drool hanging delicately off her chin.

Edited to add:

Monday, December 11, 2006

Daycare, Week 2 Day 1

I would say today was mediocre. I dropped Dylan off at 9:15, dropped in at 10:15 and found her asleep, then got a call at 11:00 that she was hysterical. I think she wakes up from her nap and panics. But the daycare women seemed to be less intimidated by her this time. I meant to bring her back for another afternoon session, but we went out to lunch with friends and she fell asleep afterwards and here were are. It seems like we are making some slow progress, and I think if we keep at it everyday it will eventually get better.

I have gotten her to take a half ounce from the bottle two days in a row. In order to do this, only I can do it, I have to use a specific kind of bottle, and I have to hold her facing out while I walk around the room singing and shoving the bottle in her face. Convenient, no?

I have a video of Dylan snacking on the exersaucer but youtube is fighting with me so maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Guess who got a jury summons

And it's not me. It's for the first week of classes spring semester, so that should work out great. Other fun things that have happened in the past week besides daycare...I took the car in for an oil change and it needed several hundred dollars worth of new tires...Snuffy ate the pompom off my favorite hat...the temperature got down to 16 degrees and I had to walk Snuffy and there were four inches of snow on the ground and I wore my Crocs and forgot to wear socks and my feet froze off.

Dylan has been very cranky and not wanting to be put down the past few days. I looked in the book that talks about the fussy times and again she's doing exactly what it says. Unfortunately, it also says this will last four more weeks. That combined with continued efforts at daycare should make for good times ahead. I think I am making some progress with the bottle but it's still going to be a while before she'll take it readily. I think the people at daycare think all problems will be solved once she does that. Fools.

We put Dylan in the exersaucer because she is really enjoying toys now even though she is way too small for her feet to reach the ground. We put a big thick book under them so they would touch. She definitely likes it, although she mostly tries to climb out because through some oversight she can't get her mouth on the toys from the seat.

Aaron came upon this little scene in the kitchen yesterday:

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Two stories

A building contractor of no small fame was known as the best contractor in the world. He could examine a set of blueprints, make a few calculations, and give an estimate that was precise to the penny and the hour of completion. Because of this, he had enough jobs lined up to last him for the rest of his life. The town fathers of a small community needed a new school built, but had VERY limited funds, and only three months to complete the project, so they decided to try out the famous contractor. Fortunately, the contractor's mother was from that very same town, so he consented to do the job for them. He arrived on the scheduled day, and examined the blueprints. Making a few calculations with a pencil stub, in a small notebook, he began to write out a list of what they would need to build the school. When he was finished, he gave the town fathers the list and the total cost for the job, which was just under the amount that they had allotted for the construction. They immediately gave their approval and the contractor began preparations. The next day, the crew arrived to begin the job. As the summer wore on, the school quickly took shape, and the town looked on in amazement as every board, nail, and bag of cement was used up by the crew, who NEVER called for more. On the exact day he had planned, the contractor and his crew finished the job. Walking around the site at the end of the day, making sure everything was just so, the contractor came upon an empty cement bag that had been left lying on the ground. He picked it up to throw in the dumpster and underneath it he found......A BRICK! Well, THIS was a first. He had never before had a single thing left over on any job. He held the brick in his hand and stared at it a moment. Then, to the surprise of all present, do you know what he did with the brick?

He threw it away.


One day an older lady was riding the city bus, holding her very small, very nervous and neurotic dog on her lap, and sitting in the aisle seat. At a certain stop, a man about her own age got on the bus, and spotting the only empty seat left, next to the lady and her dog, squeezed past her and sat down by the window. They rode along for a while, and soon the man opened a bag from the deli, and pulled out a gigantic pickle, wrapped up in waxed paper. Upon seeing this, the little dog went crazy, barking and sneezing at the man. The lady tried to hold him and calm him, and said to the man, "Say, Mister, you can't eat that pickle now because my little FiFi is allergic to the smell, and it gives her fits." The man ignored her and began to unwrap his pickle. The lady, speaking a little louder, said again, "Excuse me sir, but I _said_ you can't eat that now, because it bothers my little dog." The man turned to her, still unwrapping his pickle, and said, "I don't really care what your dog likes or doesn't like. I haven't had my lunch, and I'm going to eat my pickle," and he took a huge bite. Well, the dog went berserk! She barked and sneezed and foamed at the mouth, and nearly tore herself out of the woman's grasp. "Sir, I MUST DEMAND THAT YOU STOP EATING THAT PICKLE, THIS VERY MINUTE," she shouted, over the dog. "IF YOU DON'T, I SHALL BE FORCED TO TAKE IT FROM YOU AND THROW IT OUT OF THE WINDOW!" Munching sedately, the man said, in a loud but calm voice, "Lady, if you so much as lay a finger on my pickle, I will take that yapping flea bag on your lap and throw IT out the window," and took another bite of his pickle, chewing contentedly.
True to her word, the woman reached over and twitched the pickle from the man's hand and flung it out the open window. The man chewed his mouthful of pickle and swallowed it, wiping his mouth and hands on a napkin. And, true to _his_ word, he grabbed the little dog by the scruff of the neck and threw IT out the window.
The bus chugged on and the woman went into hysterics, cursing at the man and threatening him with all sorts of vile treatment at the hands of her lawyers.
At the next stop, the bus pulled up and the doors hissed open. Standing there on the curb, wagging its tail and dragging its leash was the little dog. And do you know what it had in its mouth?


mutter mutter shaggy dog story mutter mutter

Friday, December 08, 2006

No Soap, Radio

Call my touching tale of the reunification of a dog and his toy a shaggy dog story, will you? I invite you to come and get Snuffy some exercise then.

We did another hour of daycare today. It didn't go great, but I figure she's at least getting used to the place and the people every day. Still no luck with the bottle, despite trying a secret embarrassing weapon.

People keep telling me that teething toys for babies are not called chew toys. But I am set in my ways, so apparently Dylan is going to keep getting chew toys.

Actual question asked in one of Tommy's college interviews: If you could have an extra appendage anywhere, what would it be?

The interviewer said she would have chosen a retractable unicorn horn that could cause world peace and cure AIDS. Loser. I was thinking along the lines of a hook. Aaron wants a corkscrew, although he's worried they wouldn't let him through airport security. Any other suggestions are welcome in the comments.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Thursday daycare report

Successful, but sort of pathetic.

I decided to try a few things differently today. I brought her in the early afternoon instead of the morning. I wrote out a list of things we find work well with her. She had just napped and been fed when I brought her in. And I came back and picked her up after an hour. All in all, not that helpful to me as a way to get free time, but vastly better than the previous three days, when she was absolutely hysterical and inconsolable every single time I got there to pick her up, even when I was only gone an hour.

Today when I got there she was sitting in a high chair like it was her throne, happily yammering away at the room. She really just likes to see what's going on around her, and I think that helped a lot. They said she cried once, but they got her to calm down pretty easily. I decided to take her home today while she was happy rather than pushing my luck. We still have to work on the bottle, which will help her wake up from naps without panicking, but maybe this is a good first step. Luckily we have quite a few weeks to play around with this before both of us are working all day again.

Happy Birthday David