Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bon Appetit

I was not very adventurous with food when I was younger, I was the typical picky eater that many children are. This continued into adulthood and I even refused to try sushi for years because I just assumed I wouldn't like it. Fast forward to my first date with Will when he takes me to a sushi restaurant. I was embarrassed to admit I'd never eaten it before so I tried it and low and behold I liked it. It is now one of my favorite foods and having to give it up for 9 months while I was pregnant was very difficult.

So now I try to live by the "At least try one bite" rule because you never know. By agreeing to try something new even if I think I'll hate it, I have discovered a few more foods I never thought I would like but do - Chicken Tikka Misala, Fried Tofu, and Seaweed!  However, there is one infamous food that no matter how many times I agree to try it, I always back out at the last minute.... chicken feet. I just can't bring myself to do it, those things have toes!!!

I hope Nathan is a little more daring than his mama and will be happy to try new things. In an effort to steer him in the right direction, I am trying to expose him to as many flavors as possible. We started out simple, sprinkling his sweet potatoes with nutmeg. He liked it. We switched his plain roasted turkey to pepper cracked. He can't get enough. Then we offered him sauteed garlic asparagus. He licked the garlic off his fingers. He has been very receptive and sometimes I laugh at how sophisticated his meals are for an 11 month old. For instance last night for dinner he had tilapia baked with olive oil, garlic and tomatoes and a side of butternut squash roasted with rosemary and cinnamon. And today's lunch consisted of salmon seasoned with lemon juice, basil, and pepper with a side of sauteed garlic string beans. One thing is clear... the kid loves garlic!

I know this won't last forever and it's very likely he'll go through a "I want chicken nuggets and mac and cheese for every meal" phase as he gets older. But for now, it makes it a lot easier when we can just prepare one meal for all 3 of us and know he'll actually eat it.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sticky situation

When it comes to couples, it is often said that opposites attract. This is absolutely true for me and Will. I am emotional and tend to react quickly, Will is rational and stays calm. I like to get things done right away, Will tends to leave things to the last minute. And possibly our most accurate (and tension inducing) example is I am neat and Will is messy. However, we are finding the opposite to be true when it comes to feeding Nathan.

Nathan is a very good eater. By good, I mean he eats almost anything you put in front of him. However, when it comes to table manners, good is not the first word I think of. He notoriously examines each piece of food before eating it which usually involves smushing it, squeezing it, smelling it... all before it goes in his mouth. He also enjoys rubbing his eyes, ears and hair, being sure to get as many food particles as he can over every part of his body he can reach.

I find this funny and cute and think it's a part of life that we'll look back at fondly, laughing at the pictures we've taken of Nathan's messy face and hands.


Will however cringes throughout the entire meal and I can practically hear his heartbeat racing faster and faster the messier Nathan gets. He prefers spoon feeding him so Nathan can't get his hands on anything sticky, gooey, or messy.


My advice to Will would be to invest in baby wipe stock because we've got a lot of messy years ahead of us!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Smile if you love your Mommy

I can remember as a child, anytime I got upset, my dad would look at me, smiling, and say "Smile if you love your Daddy". I would try so hard not to smile but the more he said it, the harder it got and I always ended up smiling, then laughing, then forgetting what I was upset about. I do this to Nathan now and it works like a charm.

One of the best parts of being a parent is getting to be silly. My days are full of funny faces, silly songs, embarrassing dances - anything that would make me look completely crazy were there not a baby in the room. But when Nathan gets upset, I am willing to do anything to make him smile or even better, laugh.

Will and I have always been silly together so we find it very easy to let our guard down and be silly with a baby. I hope we teach Nathan not to take himself too seriously and that laughter is usually the best medicine.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Nathan's New Kicks

We picked out Nathan's first pair of shoes this week and there is only one word suitable to describe them... ADORABLE!!! Up until now we have followed the advice of our pediatrician and only had him wear socks, fleece booties in the winter or just go barefoot. But since he's standing on his own now, and attempting to take steps (which results in him falling down on his diapered bottom multiple times throughout the day) she suggested we could introduce shoes. We measured his feet, looked for a neutral pair that would go with most outfits and then ordered them online. When they arrived I was shocked to see what nice quality they were. I've never owned a pair of shoes that are packaged so nicely. I almost didn't want to take them out of the box.

Nathan seems to like them although there is a part of me that feels sad because they make him look like a boy, not a baby. With his first birthday approaching in a few weeks, I am feeling that way a lot lately.

I think my favorite part about his new shoes is that now we match! Although Nathan's are so shiny and new, I am considering getting a new pair for myself because mine are looking a little dingy in comparison.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Weekly Gratitude

Today I am grateful for:
  • Getting the chance to catch up with an old friend over frozen margaritas and tapas inside a cozy restaurant while watching through the window as flashes of lightening lit up the sky and snow and sleet slowly covered the NYC streets, on one of the first days of Spring!
  • That I somehow made time to read an entire book, beginning to end, something I rarely get to do anymore. I've discovered if I set a goal to read for 20 minutes before bed each night, it's not that hard to do and I look forward to welcoming reading back into my life.
  • For the rosemary cinnamon butternut squash french fry recipe I found online, can't wait to make them this weekend!
  • That my sister, one of my best friends in the entire world, is coming to visit this weekend!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The simple things...

I've said before that one of the best things about babies is how they enjoy the simple things in life. Will gave Nathan a Melissa & Doug picnic set for Christmas and it has become one of his favorite toys. He played with this piece of bread and piece of cheese for close to an hour today. He attached them, he detached them. He attached them, he detached them. Oh, the fun you can have with velcro!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Hit or Miss

You have to get a bouncy seat, my baby loved his bouncy seat.

Never warm the formula, eventually he'll take it cold.

Don't waste your money on a Jumperoo, my baby hated it.

Once he reaches 4 months, he'll sleep through the night.

For the record, Nathan hated his bouncy seat, he REFUSED to drink formula unless it was warm, he loved his Jumperoo (it allowed me to shower and basically saved my life!) and he was still waking up every 2 hours when he was 4 months. I've come to realize that everything with babies is hit or miss. What one baby loves, another one might hate. What works for one mom will be useless to another.  The most important lesson I've learned is to do what works for our family. It might not be the same thing my mother's generation would do, or my friends would do, or the mom next to me at the park would do, but if it works for me, I'm going with it!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Weekly Gratitude

After reading about and watching videos of the devastation going on in Japan this week, it is hard not to feel grateful for everything and everyone in my life. It really puts things in perspective. Do I have problems? Yes.  But are they really that bad? No, they're not. I have so much to feel grateful for every single day. Today I am grateful for:
  • My neighborhood- it's a pretty cool feeling to live in a city of 8 million people yet sometimes feel like I'm in a small town when I walk down the street and have people call out my name to say hello, know my coffee order before I open my mouth, and ask how much longer until Nathan's first birthday.
  • Speaker phone - it's so much easier to wait on hold for 20 minutes when you can put the phone down and do something that requires 2 hands while you wait.
  • The internet - how else would I know how long to bake salmon for, where do I know that actor from, what subway stop is closest to my destination, and so many other questions I wonder each day.
  • Antibiotics - what did people do before antibiotics???
  • Thin crust pizza - not only is it an inexpensive meal, but the crust is so thin that you can eat twice as much without feeling guilty.... right??

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

"If you're lucky enough to be Irish, you're lucky enough."

I would kiss this little munchkin even if he wasn't (half) Irish.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Music Man

Nathan has always loved music so I took him to a Mommy and Me music class on the UWS this week and he had such a good time. He was one of the older kids in the class, most of the babies were lying on blankets, content to stay in one spot. But Nathan and two other older boys all ditched their mamas and crawled right into the center of the circle. (He did however keep looking back at me and waving, that's my Mama's boy!) And anytime the teacher clapped her hands, he looked back at me again, wildly clapping his own hands as if he were thinking "I know how to do that!!"

The boys were happy to stay in the center of the circle until the teacher pulled out a drum.

And then it was a 3 man race to see who could get there the fastest and hit it the hardest. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Student driver

I'm suddenly afraid of the day Nathan gets his license.
Very, very afraid.

Friday, March 11, 2011

DJ Nathan B

We're having a mellow Friday night, listening to a mix of Beth Orton, Cat Stevens, and The Flaming Lips, courtesy of our house DJ.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Fashion Forward

Not everyone can pull off striped, skinny pants with a giant dog on the tush... but I think Nathan wears them quite nicely

Monday, March 7, 2011

It's a big world, baby

As much as I like to live in denial that the day will come, I know my future holds episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba. I cringe just thinking about it. But as of right now, we haven't let Nathan start watching TV. I grew up watching Sesame Street and Mr Rogers and I know there are tons of other children's programs out there that are stimulating and educational, we just think he's still young enough that there are so many other ways to keep him entertained.

We do however have one go-to video on You Tube. Nathan LOVES this video. He sits perfectly still (very rare) and if someone in the room makes any noise, or god forbid breathe, he turns and gives them the dirtiest look as if to say "Hello?!?!?! I'm watching my video, can you please keep it down???"


Recently he has started to whine anytime someone is sitting at the computer. He pulls on your legs and tries to get up into your lap and once he does, he starts slamming the keyboard... we may have created a monster.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Weekly Gratitude

This week was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week. I got some unexpected bad news and while I hope that in time, I'll be able to make lemonade, right now all I can taste is sour lemons. But, in the spirit of Weekly Gratitude....

  • I am grateful for Will, who per usual, helped keep me sane.
  • I am grateful for Nathan's laugh.
  • I am grateful for the Bus Stop Cafe, where Will and I shared a cozy dinner by the window last night.
  • I am grateful for Cabernet Sauvignon... no explanation needed.
  • I am grateful for new beginnings.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Nathan's 1st celebrity sighting

One fun part of living in New York City is the occasional celebrity sighting. Will is much better at spotting them than me, he usually nudges me right after they walked by and says "Did you see who that was?" and usually, I didn't even notice. But I have seen a few.

We have seen Ted Danson and his wife, Mary Steenburgen shopping for fruit at Whole Foods. We've seen Claire Danes picking out a birthday card at CVS. One night we stood behind Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Mitchell from Modern Family) and Zachary Qunito (Sylar from Heroes) in line at Duane Reade. And just last weekend, we saw Amy Ryan, the actress who plays Michael Scott's girlfriend on The Office, pushing her own baby stroller down the street.

Nathan had his very first celebrity sighting tonight. I took him for a walk up 9th Avenue and we stopped outside the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. On the corner of 55th and 9th, one of the dance studios has floor to ceiling windows which allows anyone walking by to stop and watch the dancers. Usually, it's professional dancers and you basically have amazing, free entertainment.

Tonight, it appeared to be an open class, for anyone with an interest in dance. There were elderly women, so cute, dancing along to what appeared to be salsa. There were young girls, barely dressed at all, shaking what their mommas gave them. And then there were 2 girls in the very back row and one of them caught my eye. She looked so familiar but I couldn't place her, until she turned and looked out to the street and I saw that it was America Ferrera. And then the girl next to her started to look familiar. She was tall and thin and wore glasses. The glasses threw me off but after looking at her for a while, trying as hard as I could to stare without being creepy, I realized it was Alexis Bledel. The funny part is you would never know they were glamorous TV/movie stars. They were wearing baggy t-shirts and no makeup and they looked "normal".

I made sure to whisper to Nathan on the way home, "Did you see who was in that class?!?!" but he wasn't very impressed... typical New Yorker.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Book Bandit

The burgulars in the movie Home Alone referred to themselves as the "Wet Bandits" because they always left the water running after they robbed a house.

If Nathan ever turns into a burgular (and how could he, I mean, he's the PERFECT child!!!) his nickname would have to be the Book Bandit. He notoriously pulls books down off every bookshelf in our apartment before leaving a room. It was funny at first, but I'm not sure how many more times Will and I can put the books back before we lose our marbles!!