Monday, September 28, 2009

The Yearling

I started to write this post the night before Will's first birthday. He spent the weekend walking--nay, run-toddling--around his grandparents' spacious New Jersey living room, reveling in the company of his cousins, and getting too excited to take real naps. That last one resulted in some overtired whining, but also some really hilarious babbling (hopefully that video upload will work someday soon and you can witness the babbling firsthand), so all is forgiven.

One year ago, I was at the hospital after spending a day of early laboring at home. I had treated myself to a McDonald's milkshake, walked around the block and up and down the hallway countless times, and watched a lot of The Wire, Season 2. (There's a reason I don't remember much about those early episodes set on the Baltimore docks--I kept leaving the room to pace or bounce on my exercise ball.)

At this time last September 27, at 9:30 p.m., I was putting off the epidural so I could stay upright a little longer in my deee-luxe delivery room. I didn't know what Will looked like. I didn't know what it felt like to hold him, somebody I had created, in my arms and on my chest. I didn't have the capacity to imagine the 8 pounds and 6 ounces that were about to enter the world, and I certainly couldn't picture this walking, talking, kissing, laughing, joke-cracking behemoth of a one-year-old who so obviously sees his entire life as one big glass half full.

I've never survived a steeper learning curve or missed someone so much when he was only inches from me; never has one year gone by so fast while altering the order of things in so many fell swoops.

And here we are, those cliched parents with the cliched emotions (well, they feel new to us), whispering to each other over warm autumn bedcovers:

How is it that we love him more now than we did last month--last week--yesterday?

C'mon, let's look at him on the monitor one last time before turning out the lights.

Oh, God, he's cute. Look at how cute the little bubba is.

Thanks for being born, baby boy. Happy birthday.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Five Months Along with Baby Two

I popped between 20 and 22 weeks this time around, just like I did with Will. And when I pop...well, let's just say my arms and lower body are NOT spared any indignity.

The baby was sleeping during our last check-up, so his heart rate was at a nicely paced 146 bpm. This boy has a more typical sleep pattern than his older brother--he sleeps all day, starts rolling around in the late afternoon, and saves his hearty kicks and punches for the evening...and all through the night. Although Will was incredibly rowdy in utero, I don't think I felt this banged up so early in the process during that pregnancy. This time, this early, is still really HURTS.

When I mentioned this to my beloved OB, she shook her head at me and said, "You don't have any muscles left there, Bubba! What you felt at 30 weeks last time you're feeling now instead." Charming.

In other news, Will and I have been on a pleasant fall schedule consisting of running to Starbucks in the morning after (his) breakfast--I treat myself to a venti decaf mocha and then complain about how I've "popped" as if it has nothing to do with my eating habits, that's clever!--taking an inconsistently timed but often long-ish nap, and then seeing our friends, whether at playgroup, signing/music class, or a trip to the park.

[Whew, that was a long sentence.]

Anyway, it's been great is what I'm trying to say, and even though I'm exhausted at the end of each and every day--if you couldn't tell by this haphazard post--Will and I have never had more fun together. The whole thing makes me very optimistic about adding another person to the family in four months. (Let's hope that attitude lasts.)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Walker Noon

No, we are not naming our second son "Walker"--although we do have a name all picked out, Dave has sworn me to secrecy.

Anyway, the title of this post refers to our FIRST son, who has been working on his walk for a few months now and finally got the hang of it this week, shakily toddling across rooms and down hallways--although sometimes he still prefers the speed-crawl.

As I've said many times before, I'm more than happy to keep him in all-fours mode for as long as he likes, since with walking comes tripping (especially on too-long pant legs) and falling, not to mention dashing out of sight in milliseconds. But I have to admit, there's something outrageously fun about watching Will walk. It's like he's Pinocchio going from wood to flesh--he's a "real boy"!

Just keep your fingers crossed for his head and my sanity.

Meanwhile, my very first baby, Bella (my niece) turns eight today. EIGHT! We got manicures last weekend to celebrate, and all the women at the nail salon cooed over her and asked if they could pinch her cheeks and take her home with them. (She really is that cute.) Not only that, but she picked out my pedicure polish and came home with fabulous sequined flowers on her own big toes. The whole day made me so happy, and I kept thinking, "No matter how many boys I end up with, I'll always have Bella to indulge my girly side--thank goodness."

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Family Resemblance

Dave and I still can't see much of ourselves in Will, physically speaking.
Clearly he gets his hyperactivity from me:

His obsession with taking everything apart and inspecting it (in this case, a lens cap) from Dave:

His goofball sense of humor can be blamed on both of us:

But the physical resemblance that most people point out to us?

Good old Grandpa Joe:

When we put this hat on Will's head at the store, it instantly reminded us of my wonderful grandfather, and even Dave swore we had to take it home:

He would have been so tickled to meet his little doppelganger, the boy who inherited his gray eyes and prominent ears and happy-go-lucky nature--but I have to remind myself that this is how it's supposed to be, that the great-grandfather lives on in the great-grandson.
I'm sure Grandpa Joe was ready, after 99 1/2 years on earth, to pass down his signature look.
I just wish he were here to see it in person.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

How I Spent (the past week of) My Summer Vacation

Shouting "Go, car, go!"
with Uncle Ryan

Falling in love with sunglasses...

Wearing them, eating them...

Looking sharp

Even enjoying a civilized brunch with Uncle Jim and Lauren--

and the summer's not over yet!