Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Happy Birthday Cool Uncle Z

Also Happy Five Months to Dylan

Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Snuffy Poop

When we first got Snuffy, we worked very hard to train him to poop on command (good for cocktail parties and whatnot). We were derailed by a months-long saga that involved giardia, numerous food allergies, and bloody diarrhea, the upshot of which is we now cook him chicken for breakfast every morning and he eats only (very expensive) prescription duck and potatoes dog food. It also meant he wasn't entirely in control of his bowels, and truly could not poop when told to. He is still funny about pooping, and won't go at all unless he is being walked. We can leave him out playing with his dog friends for many hours, only to have him come in and start whining fifteen minutes later in legitimate distress. Sometimes I walk him around the yard and he'll go there, but mostly he requires a long jaunt around the neighborhood.

He prefers, if possible, to go right along the edge of the curb. Right now there is about a foot of snow on the ground. It has melted and re-frozen several times, so it has a nice crust that breaks through if you step on it. Snuffy, however, cannot be deterred. So he now wades through snow that despite his high clearance comes up almost to his stomach. It is pretty funny to watch. As Aaron says, he is very particular.

He is still great about peeing whenever and wherever we tell him to (except, of course, in New York City).

This morning when I took him out to pee he saw another dog and pulled me across the new layer of snow like I was on a sled.

If you've ever wondered what a kimono onesie looks like, today is your lucky day:

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A Place For Everything

Is it ironic if you are killed by a CPR class?

Daycare was Bad yesterday, as expected.

Aaron is deeply offended by the lack of suggestions for what he might want for his birthday (he is a strange one). But I think you all are just smart because it was a TRAP, A TRAP, RUN. He was then going to tell you that whatever you suggested you should go out and get it for him.

As I was walking down the hall of my building yesterday to bring Dylan to daycare, a woman stopped me to coo over the pretty pretty baby. I walked back down the hallway on the way to my office, and the woman recognized me and said hi. A few seconds later she did a double take and said urgently, wait...what did you do with that baby?

Monday, January 29, 2007

Last 100 Hits

No Dylan Turnovers Here

Dylan has discovered the joys of pounding the keyboard. I'm in trouble now.

I lovingly put a cupcake on the table this morning to eat on my walk with Snuffy. You see where this is going, I imagine. Snuffy lovingly swallowed the cupcake, wrapper and all, before I even had time to get my shoes on. That dog has quite the sweet tooth.

Sweet potatoes were quite a hit with the under-6-month crowd this morning.

Since her first round of rolling over a while ago, Dylan has not been interested in a repeat performance. She doesn't like spending a lot of time on her tummy in the first place, so she has to be in just the right mood to even be doing that. When she does roll over it is very sudden, like she has been possessed by the rolling over spirit.

I have given up on the bottle completely. I packed them all up in the attic. Where I went to pull the string to turn on the light and the string broke. I stood there jumping up and down with my stubby little legs trying to reach the stubby little cord, but alas it was no use. The attic is turning into a Giant Rubble Mound, but at least we won't be able to see it.

The sippy cup is actually working better. At some point soon (where soon = ideally before my four-hour CPR class tonight) I am hoping to have her eat an actual meal from it that doesn't involve eating from me ten minutes after eating from the sippy cup. Although now since I don't like daycare so much I like having a reason to check on her every couple of hours. I suppose I can still do that, but maybe it won't have to be QUITE so often.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Advice Needed

Aaron would like to solicit comments on what he might like for his birthday this Thursday.

Try Our Delicious Lightly Frosted Chocolate Labradoodle
Now, With More Snuff

Food Glorious Food

Dylan was yipping like a puppy all day yesterday. We did want another dog, so maybe she's trying to please us. It was weird though.

The sidewalk plow came, yay! I couldn't even get the stoller down the sidewalk anymore. Our street, however, is another story.


Street; Needed: Mr. Plow

I have been really torn about when to give Dylan solids. I know the recommendation is to wait until six months, but I don't think that's based on too much reliable research (the strength of the recommendation is a 'C' on a grading scale). And I think it might help tide her over when I can't feed her as often as she likes. She is giving me lots of signs that she's ready -- she is really interested in watching us eat, the amount of time between meals is getting shorter and shorter, she can put stuff in her mouth on her own, she gets hungry at night when she never used to. There's a chart of how much milk babies who aren't eating solids should be getting in this book I have, Super Baby Food, and she's two pounds heavier than the heaviest weight in the chart.

I eventually decided that the most important thing is that she not be hungry at daycare, so I tried giving her some avocado.

I'm not sure it agreed with her that well -- she had a HUGE poop later that day, which is rare for her, and she was more irritable than usual the rest of the day. I waited a few days, then yesterday tried again with banana. She liked it, but I'm not sure that agreed with her either. I think I'll try sweet potatoes next in another couple days. In any case she LOVES teething biscuits.

Saturday, January 27, 2007


According to both the Wonder Weeks and fussiness level, Dylan is at the beginning of another fussy period. It will purportedly last about three weeks and then we're in the clear for a couple of months (exceptions: teething, bad sleep nights, looking at the baby cross-eyed, phases of the moon). Three weeks doesn't sound long, but come stay with us for a few days and you might feel differently. She has started acting shy and bursting into tears when people who aren't me or Aaron hold her or look at her. She'll play with toys for a while, but wants to be held and enteratined a lot. She does NOT like to get dressed. Although as she gets more functional the unhappy times seem a little easier on her.

The days she was at daycare this week didn't go that well. And unfortunately I feel like the fussier she is at daycare the less they really try to play with her or comfort her because they don't get a lot of positive feedback from it. I sometimes try to dress her particularly cutely because that makes them like her more because her class is almost all boys (scummy, I know, but whatever makes things easier for her there). They just don't seem to be able to deal with her very well when she's being sort of high maintenance. I know it is like wishing for the End of Days to want the baby to start crawling, but that is her ticket to the next room up at daycare, where they have the same adult to child ratio but do a lot more fun stuff.

She really tricked me into thinking she was easygoing those first three months, but I see now that I was wrong. She's still a lot of fun right now though. She smiles every time I look at her and wiggles her whole body happily, like Snuffy wagging his tail.

Friday, January 26, 2007


Dylan had a good night the past couple of nights and kindly let me sleep in. Snuffy's groomer, however, called the house at 7 freaking 15 in the morning. How nice of them to let me know his appointment was cancelled.

Aaron went to give blood the other day. They give you a free movie certificate, then screen you. He had been to the Dominican Republic too recently, so could not actually give blood. He proudly spoke about how he would have given a double dose, had he been able to donate, all the while scurrying away with his coupon.

So, about bedtime. It has changed our lives. It's like she was suddenly programmed to fall asleep between 8 and 9. And she really puts herself to sleep every night. And the reflux is a lot better. So instead of MAYBE getting her down at midnight, if we're lucky, plus another hour and a half of holding her upright, we can just put her down at 8:30 and go about our business. It's awesome. I hope it lasts. She's not as good at going to sleep for naps, but she's getting better if we time it right. If we keep her home in the morning she also still takes a nice morning nap. If we don't then she muddles along on 20-minute cat naps all day at daycare, then sacks out in the evening when she gets home. Which does not work as well for getting her to bed. I actually think she could go to bed a little sooner, but her naps have to work out right.

It's been snowing here every day. There used to be a sidewalk plow that would troll the neighborhood, but it hasn't been out yet. It is fairly hard to walk Snuffy down a lot of streets and I'm not even sure I could run right now.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Wednesday = Sucks

I don't have a lot of scheduled time during the week, but all of it is on Wednesday. Which is also the one day a week that Aaron has more than one class. Yesterday I felt like a little gerbil on a wheel scurrying around.

The trip to DC went well. I think the meeting, which was to recruit state health workers for my dissertation, was successful, but my project still could crash and burn at any moment. It was a fun adventure to travel with her though. I wish we had been able to go play in the city some because it was a nice day and it seemed like there was a lot going on. Dylan doesn't like the actual time on the plane, but she likes looking around in the airport and we had fun in the hotel.

My dad was there to help on the plane ride there and during the meeting. Dylan did great until he underestimated the height of the overhead bin relative to her head. The flight back was pretty empty, so we had some space to spread out.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Dylan on a Plane

Monday, January 22, 2007

Dylan & Kate's Excellent Adventure

Dylan and I are off to DC this morning for a conference. Little parasite-face gets to come because I am still her only food source. My dad is going to be the nanny and escort us on the plane. I'm sure you all can't wait to hear about Baby's First Trip Through Airport Security.

We booted Dylan out of our room over the weekend. We had her in a bassinet attached to our bed until she outgrew it like Clifford the Big Red Baby. Then in early December we moved her to a crib. I think getting used to that was one of the sources of her sleep troubles in the past month and a half, but we've more or less got the bugs hammered out at this point. Not that her bed has bugs or hammers in it.

Putting Dylan's crib in her own room involved moving an intimidatingly large desk, a task we have been avoiding for, oh, about five months now. We didn't plan out the actual rearrangement of the furniture very well. We disassembled the crib in the middle of the day Saturday, then wandered away, distracted by shiny things and food. As Dylan's bedtime (she has a bedtime! but that's a whole other post) quickly approached, we realized that the desk was in the crib spot and the crib was still dismantled and all hell was about to break loose.

First we had to clear Dylan's extensive stuffed animal collection off the desk. Not pictured: the ENORMOUS stuffed bear from Josh and Laura.

As I am a weakling, we rolled the desk into the hallway, so it blocked both the bathroom and the office. And there it stayed for a full day until Kirsten came over and helped Aaron move it. Kirsten also brought Aaron a triple (3/4 lbs of meat) from Wendy's because I guess she wants him dead.

Then I put Dylan to sleep because when the time comes there is no stopping her. I had to hold her up for a full hour while Aaron moved and reassembled the crib. Good times for all. Aaron likes to use the intercom as a walkie-talkie (where's the crib sheet...I can't hear you...I'm taking offense at your lack of response), so that facilitated conversation throughout the process. But now she has her own room and we have our room back. Between the baby being in there and Aaron going to bed early from the bakery, I haven't been able to walk in my bedroom in the evening and turn the lights on in three years.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Brushes With the Law and Death

1. I was on the verge of hurling myself down a hill on a flying saucer when out of the corner of my eye I noticed a police car turning around a nearby service road. My friends down below asked if it was the police, and if so, Run! We herded the dogs and the sleds together and lumbered the 100 or so yards through the snow to my friends' house. We shoved the dogs through the fence gate because of course, officer, they have been playing here all along. Apparently neither off leash dogs nor sledding is allowed in the park. Nor are flowers. Or love. It is not clear whether the police had any interest in us, but they sure didn't catch us.

2. Later that day, Aaron, Melanie, Dylan, and I were driving to lunch because we know what's important. Suddenly Aaron pulls into a left turn lane at a field where I play ultimate sometimes. I questioned him (he hates it when I do that), as I had no plans to play ultimate that very minute, and, eye on the prize, lunch awaited. As is often the case, I was wrong to wonder what he was doing because he was that very minute being pulled over. The police had caught up with me. No one else in the car had been there though, so I could nobly confess and they could all go free. We had been going all of 23 miles an hour, so we really had no idea why we would be pulled over. The nice policeman thought our inspection had expired. But it had not. So that was that. I think he felt a little bad, and Dylan kindly screamed to try to rub it in.

3. Funny I should mention miles per hour. It has been about six months since I have been to the gym since running outside lets me wear Snuffy out at the same time. He was so tired from his snowy playdate that he put himself to bed in the basement in the middle of the day. He only does that when, um, never. So anyway, I was free to go to the gym to run. The fancy new treadmill asked how fast I would like to go. I said 13, meaning, I'll start at 13 minutes per mile. It thought I meant I would like to start at 13 miles per hour. Holy crap. My little legs kept going faster and faster until I made a flying leap to the side. From that safe vantage point I was able to find the emergency stop button, which I couldn't see from the actual treadmill because of the glare. This treadmill also had those heartrate sensors right at hand level and would periodically flash "using sensors while running is not recommended."

Saturday, January 20, 2007


Snuffy and I went sledding this morning. He is one snow-loving dog. Although not a sled-loving dog.

We had a nice visit from Melanie this weekend even though I don't think it got above 20 degrees the whole time she was here. Apparently winter starts in mid-January now.

They sense weakness

Snuffy and Mochi work together to harass Emma. Great Teamwork, guys!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Daycare Update: Week Whatever

Yesterday we had an actual good day at daycare. Or to be more accurate an actual good three hours at daycare since we try to have Dylan there for as little time as possible, but we'll take what we can get. She played happily just about the whole time. She still takes crappy 20-30 minute naps there, but I think they're getting better at putting her to sleep. When I went to pick her up she looked around, like, hey, it's cool, I'm just hanging out here. So there may yet be hope...

She hasn't rolled over too much since she first did it, I think because being sick really took a lot out of her. She would just flop pathetically on her stomach, barely lifting her head up. Now she is getting her strength back, although she still has a nice smoker's cough. Speaking of smokers, since the hospital banned smoking on all parts of its campus, including the parking lots, there have been herds of smokers roaming through our neighborhood, spreading stink and cigarette butts wherever they go. Public health in action. I went to a talk today where they said they are "addressing the issue."

Shortly after this was taken, Snuffy turned into a cartoon and took flight

Thursday, January 18, 2007


I think we're coming out the other end of some bad bad sleep times. At least I hope so.

Barefoot in the kitchen, Aaron tends to the baby and the cooking

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Classes Start Today, Pray For Us

The sleeping thing seems not to be a fluke -- Dylan put herself to sleep again twice yesterday for naps. In fact, she suddenly seems almost unable to fall asleep any other way (besides good old passing out while nursing, although then she wakes up soon after and wants to be put down). While I was running Aaron said he bounced her and rocked her and cradle swinged her and nothing worked, and eventually he just put her down and after just a bit of fussing out she went.

We got some nice snow yesterday. And it was 19 degrees all day. I like the snow because it makes Snuffy run around like a fool and wear himself out real quick-like, and I like the cold because it keeps the riffraff off the canal trail where I run.

We have been dabbling in fancy hot chocolates lately, the goal of which seems to be to suspend as much chocolate as possible in boiling water. Ah, the high life.

Setting up a dissertation project on no sleep is haaaaaaaaaaaaaaard.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Young SnotFace

I told Aaron we were going to the doctor Sunday morning, but it turns out he was asleep because he actually found out from checking the blog when he got up because I was back in bed by then. Whoops. Dylan is almost better now, just a little stuffy. We got a humidifier that I think helped her breathe.

For the past week or so we have had a terrible time getting her to sleep. Even if she is exhausted and it's bedtime, the minute she figures out she's being rocked to sleep she hurls her head back and screams. I thought that means it's probably time to train her to go to sleep on her own one way or the other, so I have been gearing up for that. Then last night when she starting writhing around, I just put her down in her crib. She tossed and turned a bit and 15 minutes later she was fast asleep. She woke up a couple of times and it worked again for one of them. So perhaps she already knows how to go to sleep and we were just standing in her way.

A majestic stream of drool adorns Dylan's face as we head to Wegman's

Monday, January 15, 2007

wah wah wah wah wah

We had to take turns holding Dylan up the entire night because she was so congested. I don't know how smart I'm going to be at school today. Everything outside is coated in ice, I took my life in my hands trying to get Snuffy to poop.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Baby's First Sick Visit

Well. Remember how I said I was looking forward to the weekend so I could make sure Dylan would get some decent naps? The Napping Gods frown on such arrogance. So to punish me for my hubris Dylan slept a maximum of 40 consecutive minutes over a 19+ hour period (the plus is because Aaron took the obscenely late night shift and I have no idea when he actually got her down and he's still asleep, although I do know she did not in any way sleep in). Until the sleep strike eventually destroyed her mood, I have never seen anyone so happy as Dylan was for most of yesterday.

She spent a bunch of last night just SCREAMING, not like crying, but like she was in pain. She had a terrible time getting to sleep and then couldn't seem to stay asleep either. When she got up this morning she was really hot. Her (butt! ha ha) temperature was 101.7, and she seemed unhappy and congested, but I wasn't really worried about her. I thought I would call the pediatrician just to make sure because she's so young, thinking they would tell me not to bother coming in. The Pediatrician Gods frown on such arrogance. They made me come in AND they gave her a finger stick. And it finally decided to be winter out and everything was covered in a thick layer of ice and dragging a sick kid out into that was the last think I felt like doing. One of the doctors at the practice has a beyond striking resemblance to a family friend, so it is always entertaining to see him. We first met him at the hospital when Dylan was born, when he told my mother that men are genetically incapable of dressing babies as he struggled with her little newborn shirt. At least the practice has Sunday hours and is walking distance.

Here are some pictures of Dylan working her Tommy Hilfiger outfit in happier times (uh, yesterday evening) before heading out to a birthday dinner for a friend: