Monday, December 24, 2007

Yo! Baby!

Yesterday Ruby and I went to the grocery store to pick up a couple of things. One of the things I put in the cart was a pack of the "Yo-Baby" yogurt and it was sitting in the seat next to Ruby. This guy who looked like he might have been a pal of Snoop Dog says, "Yo! Baby! Check it out! Yo! Baby! That's hilarious!" and cracks up. This is why I freakin love people. It made my day.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Santa Claus!

It's Ruby's first visit to Santa. She did great -- no tears at all. Just a little bewildered at who this whiskered gentleman was. It was a lot of fun, more so than I expected. We chatted with a really nice couple in front of us who had an adorable baby girl about Ruby's age and a sweet little 3 year old boy. The line was fairly short and the Santa was really good. He knew what he was doing and..well look at him -- he is SO Santa! If you want a copy of the picture, email me :-)

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Ruby & Her Mighty Steed

The Hank & Ruby Show

We had a fun little playdate over at Hank's house last week. Hank and Ruby had some good times playing with the drum and blocks. Ryder was there too and I think he's going to be ready to get in on the action soon. There were also a couple of new new babies there -- hard to believe that these two were ever that small!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Sleeping. It's always about sleep.

It's been kind of a crazy week getting ready for the holidays and anticipating visits from my mom, stepmom and brother. I've been baking and making lists and planning and trying to keep the house on some level of clean. Turns out, it's impossible to get the top and the bottom of the house clean at the same time. If the basement is tidy, the top is a mess and vice versa. I've not yet mastered the art of Total House Clean w/ Baby. Anyway, let's talk about Ruby, shall we? I've managed, TWO NIGHTS IN A ROW, to get her to lie down without the nightly screamfest. In the world of babies, that there is what's called a "routine" because it's happened twice. Sure, it'll change shortly but, when changing is the only thing your child does consistently, you cling to whatever even remotely resembles that elusive "routine." At any rate, I've managed to lie her down and calm her enough that instead of immediately getting in a tizzy, she lies quietly until she goes to sleep. I don't know how but I know it won't last so I am just enjoying it.

We are working on getting a more consistent routine going now that Dustin can start putting her to bed before I get home on the nights I work. I think this will be a big help as well. Right now, the routine consists of getting her into her jammies, changing her diaper, reading a story, having a bottle (soon to be a sippy cup) and I sing the Ruby Song while we brush our teeth and it's into the bed. It's about 20 minutes tops. There's been much talk amongst my mommy friends about the "nighttime routine" and how to do it and what to do etc. Evidently, much of the literature recommends an hour long routine. Of course my first reaction was one of shame and fear -- Am I screwing my kid up because I don't spend one hour a night getting her 'prepared' to go to bed? What if she needs that extra 40 minutes and that's why she'll be a blight on society? What's wrong with me that I can't put her to bed right??? Auuugghhhh!

And then, after I stopped my 2 minute mental freakout I calmed down and started think about it rationally. Did Laura and Mary's ma do an hour long routine? Probably not since after plowing, churning, darning and stoking there wasn't enough time for that. That hour the experts are talking about probably includes just doing more calm activities (i.e. no tickle fights right before bed) leading up to bedtime too. A few of my friends have admitted that they also have about a 15-20 minute routine and it seems to work just fine for them. At any rate, I began feeling like we have it down pretty good and I imagine it's all going to change again and again before there's ever anything even resembling predictable so I should just relax. I can't imagine that I am the only one who freaked a little at finding out that my bedtime routine was not up to snuff. But this is parenting -- you take little tidbits of advice here and there, reject others and inject your own ideas to make up a program that works for you. It's a lot like storytime actually.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Priorities

So last night I stayed up until midnight making stockings for Ruby, Dustin and Jack. They aren't the fanciest stockings ever but I had to have a homemade stocking for Ruby...and while I was at it I thought why not make one for her dad and Jack? Don't ask why. I was feeling crafty and when I get the bug, I have to go with it. Who cares that the laundry isn't done, there are dishes in the sink and there's baking to be done? Not me! They turned out pretty cute, I think. (Jack's isn't pictured since he doesn't have his yet).

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Being a Parent is Hard

This photo is of our dear sweet miss when she was done with posing and looking cute. It's how we know it's time to stop whatever it is we are doing. Her little fists clench and she holds them at her side and punches the air. If she could, she'd stamp her foot and toss her hair. Now, she's also got another little trick up her sleeve that's less than pleasant. The past four nights, instead of sweetly going to sleep when we lie her in her crib, as she usually does, she yells. Not just a cry or even a mad cry but a cry with yelling. That's the only way I can explain it. It's like she has been wronged in the worst way possible and she is letting us know. And she let's us know for at least 40 minutes before she finally falls asleep. Which is why for two days she's sounded a little like a mini Bea Arthur. Luckily, it is getting shorter and shorter with last night only at 15 minutes. This is good because the mommy-me haaaaaaaaaaaaates the crying and just wants to hold her and comfort her but if I do go in there, she screams louder. So I don't. Because the practical-me doesn't want her to make this latest trick a regular thing and from what I've read, this is where it starts. I can see why those Nanny 911 people have such problems - it probably all starts in these first few months. I don't want to be the mom who makes her husband drive her kids around for 2 hours in the minivan every night to get them to sleep. So, I grit my teeth and fight against my instinct to comfort and hope for the best. See? Being a parent is hard.

Shorty Shout Out

Sending good thoughts out to Savory Snax and Shorty since Shorty's having surgery today! Many hugs and slobbery kisses!!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Baby Tip #247

When giving your cats some catnip, don't let your baby proceed to crawl through the catnip thereby getting catnip on her pj's. It can get ugly.

The Duke and Duchess of Drool

Here's a picture from Ruby and Blix's playdate a few weeks back. Golly they were cute!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Catching up!

Well, the computer is somewhat fixed though it's still having problems but I have lots to report so here goes.
Ruby's first thanksgiving was a lot of fun for all of us. We headed back East to visit Papa and Grandma for several days. We took the red-eye out and Ruby was a sleepy princess for the whole trip and we didn't have any problems...other than I was exhausted by the time we got there but the good thing about family and babies is no one has any problem playing with the baby while you catch some zzzz's :-)

Ruby with Grandma

Ruby had a wonderful time visiting with Grandma and Papa. They outfitted her with her name on her door, a deluxe high chair, pack-n-play and jumper and Papa took her for a long walk in the stroller they got, for which Grandma bundled her up so that no little frosties could get her. She also got her first lick of a beater with whipped cream on it thanks to her grandma and she sat next to an 11 lb lobster. She also got to meet her Uncle Aaron & Auntie Carol as well as her other Great-Grandma Marion. In addition, Ruby's Great-Grandma Bette and Great-Aunt Kathy came to visit for an afternoon as well. Lucky lucky girl! We felt pampered and loved while out there and had such a lovely time enjoying the holiday together.

Our trip back was a little more difficult. Ruby was awake and WIGGLY plus, we had delays on our first leg which caused us to miss our connection so we had to come to Seattle via Vegas and got home about 7 hours later than planned. Ugh.

Interesting note about stupid security at the airport. I had Ruby in the Moby carrier and was ready to go through the metal detector gate. The lady stopped me from going through. Ruby was wearing those socks that look like sneakers and she wanted me to take off her shoes. Seriously??? When she realized that they were just socks, she let me through but...seriously? So what's going on with Ruby since my last post, you ask? Well, a whole lot!
  • She crawls like a mad-woman. Nothing is safe from here that is less than 2 feet off the floor. She's getting fast and furious and loves being able to cruise around the house finding stale cheerios and catfood.
  • She's getting her 2nd tooth - hooray!
  • She has started pointing at things she wants.
  • She loves standing up while holding onto things. She's a little like Dumbo and the magic feather though. If she's holding onto your fingers she's happy as a clam. If you put her hands on a table or chair and let go she starts to cry and sits down as soon as she can figure that out.
  • She loves to ride her rocking horse.
  • Her babbling sounds more and more like words.
  • She clearly understands certain words, most notably the word "no."
  • Some nights she sleeps, some nights she doesn't. Go figure. Just like her mom.
  • She got a fat lip when she slipped while crawling and landed on her face. Poor thing!
Well, this is the news for now. More forthcoming!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Buh - Bye!

It's time to say au revoir to my friend Medela Pump-in-Style and this is one good-bye that I am not sad to make. She did her job well (though she did start slacking there towards the end, if you ask me!) though she was more like a co-worker than a friend-friend...you know, the one who you'd never want to spend a minute with outside of work but that you can get along with well enough for the sake of getting things done in the office. (not to be confused with the co-worker-turned-friend who you do enjoy spending time with outside the office and in fact would still hang out with even after you no longer work there - I'm talking about you Space Grant!) At any rate, after 9 1/2 months, I have given up the pump. I gave myself until Thanksgiving to tough it out and yesterday I was so excited to have only 2 days left of pumping I could hardly stand it. Then, I spent 45 minutes pumping (in sessions of 30 min and 15 min) and got nothing so I gave it up a day early. Yah! Freedom! The chains (or tubes) of pumping are no more! The happiness is bittersweet of course (as everything seems to be these days) because I know it also means that my days of breastfeeding are numbered..still...it's a good feeling in a lot of other ways. So good-by Ms Medela. Enjoy your time in the basement. Until next time...I bid you adieu.

Monday, November 19, 2007

All Kinds of Messes This Week

Well, it's evidently "Screw With Ruby's Parents" week as we have our computer infected with spyware, someone used my debit card to purchase a plane ticket and someone broke into Dustin's work truck over the weekend. I hope that the power of three holds and we are done with this nonsense!Thankfully, it's two cases of "all is well that ends well" and things seem to be righted. We do have to figure out what to do with the computer which means that in the meantime, there will be a moratorium on photos posted - boo! Never fear, I'll make up for it when everything is fixed! It's not like I've stopped taking photos afterall -- ha ha! Ruby has had an interesting week or so. She lost a fight with the couch and another with the floor and thus has a little shiner on her left eye and a slightly fat lip. I took photos of the poor little thing for posterity knowing that it's only the beginning as she discovers all the ways she can get around and pushes the limits of her coordination. We are looking forward to the upcoming holidays as the firsts with our wee babe though it's also bittersweet as it is also a series of the first holidays without our dear Daddy and Grandpa. We will muddle through though and try to focus on the postives as much as possible. My posts will be sporadic due to the limited computer time but we'll keep y'all posted as soon as possible. In the meantime, a wonderful holiday to all of you! Cheers!

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Reign is Over

Our champion sleeper is no more. We have had two weeks straight of Ruby waking up at least once in the night and not wanting to go back to sleep. Part of it was due to her having the sniffles and not being able to breathe so we had some nights of me sleeping sitting on the couch so she was upright which meant she slept great and I did not. There were two nights of her being up every hour -(oh fond memories of when she slept all night) but now the sniffles are over and I can only explain her new sleeping pattern as being part of her going through some milestones, namely CRAWLING! Yes, this past Thursday evening (November 8th) she started crawling and now everthing at that level is fair game for our intrepid little explorer. My beloved Auntie Marie visited this weekend and we had such a lovely time and went on some great walks and Ruby enjoyed the extra attention at home. She started crawling and getting herself into a sitting position from her stomach the day Aunt Marie arrived -- I think she'd been saving it up so she could show off to someone besides us! Ha ha! In "Things You Never Knew Before You Had a Baby Around" news, I learned that calling a company whose automated message asks you to "Press or Say XXX" is IMPOSSIBLE with a squawky baby and when the lovely recorded voice said "I am sorry you cannot enter the information correctly. Please try again another time when you have looked over your information," and then disconnected, I nearly had a psychotic break. I definitely got my hate back today. I could go on and on about how much I hate those phone menus............ Anyway, in nice news, our neighbors had a beautiful baby boy on Saturday so congrats to them! Also, our thoughts are with Auntie Snax today! We love you! xoxox

Monday, November 5, 2007

9 Months!

Oh our dear Ruby has now turned 9 months old and I have discovered that this is, so far, my favorite stage. It's amazing to me how much she has learned and you can literally see her learning and growing. It's crazy. Plus she doesn't move too much yet so I am not going to crazy = ha ha!
Ruby had a fun halloween, trick or treating at the neighbors, visiting friends and carving pumpkins. Evidently, she's a bit of a princess because she didn't want to have anything to do with the pumpkin guts. She'll learn.... Our new childcare situation is working out WONDERFULLY and in fact, the nanny and her 3 kids came over for a fun evening of pizza and pumpkin carving. We feel so fortunate to have found such a great person to watch our little cricket!
Ruby had her 9 month appointment where she weighed in at a whopping 16.7 lbs and measured 25.5 inches. This puts her in the 25th percentile for weight and 10th for length. She also got a shot and her blood drawn. I expected lots of tears but when they pricked her toe to get the blood draw she barely even blinked. Tough chick!
She is very vocal, making a wide range of noises including cooing, growling, yelling, babbling and squawking. She likes to wave her hands in the air, loves playing the piano and banging on anything like it's a drum. She rolls over and sleeps on her belly. She fell off the bed for the first time a couple of weeks ago...no more leaving her on the bed for us! She sits on her hands and knees and rocks back and forth. She loves books and even better, loves taking books off the shelf. Fun! She is also fascinated with the light switch and loves to try to turn it off and on. She loves to watch Sparrow chase after the laser pointer and laughs with glee the whole time. I like that I can entertain both of them at once!
We are sending our love to cousin Jack who has been sick with an ear infection for the past 2 months and hope he's feeling better soon!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Zut Alors!

What a delicious little lobster!!!
We've had fun dressing up already and Halloween isn't until tomorrow! On Saturday, we met up with a bunch of our pals at one of our favorite lunch places, Capers, and re-enacted our couch full o' babies only this time with costumes. What fun!
Ruby is the super sleepy lobster on the left and from there it's Eva, Otto, Arrie, Blix and Marcos. Hooray for babies in costume!!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Ruby Music

The xylophone is her new favorite toy especially after grandma played Twinkle Little Star for her. Today, she pulled it out of her toy basket all by herself and began to play..... (sorry about the wobbles - the cat kept bumping me).

Updates

There's not an awful lot of stuff going on in general but Ruby's changing like mad! My mom just left and we do miss having grandma around! But now it's back to the daily grind.
Ruby is increasingly interested in pulling herself up onto things and trying to grab whatever happens to be within reach. Crawling hasn't happened yet but she will scoot herself around in a circle and backwards, so she is going places! All of this activity means sleep has become a bit sketchy. The night before last, she slept great. Last night, she was up 4 times before I gave up and just put her in bed with us. However, I have had some modest success with getting her to go to sleep on her own with minimal crying. Well....she cried for 25 minutes one night (which seemed like 25 hours to me) before succumbing to the sandman. Not too bad from what I have heard from other parents.
This weekend we went to the 1st birthday get together of our little pal, Ceci. What fun to see how much she has changed in the last year! Ruby had a BALL playing with Ceci's toys and with the other kids. Here she is in her new "earrings" - ha ha!
In the news of the furbabies, our youngest one has decided she needs more attention and since she can't dye her hair or date a completely inappropriate boy, she's pooping on the floor. I guess this is preparing me for a teenager (and I think in cat years she IS a teenager) but it sure is annoying. Clearly, I need to spread the love a little more.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Seeking True Love

Oh, you know how it goes....you're looking for love and it seems as though you'll never find "the one." You try matchmaking services, asking your friends about their single friends....some call you back, some don't. The ones that do...well, they either have some kind of attention problem, they can't hold a conversation with you, they mention things like "parole," "living in mom's basement," "restraining orders" or "can I borrow 20 bucks?" Some you meet and actually go out with...hoping against hope that this is "The One." At first glance he seems ok but then he makes weird noises while he eats or tells you he is a Scientologist and your hopes are dashed again. And then, miracle of all miracle, you meet the perfect guy. He's attractive, he has a sense of humor, you like doing the same stuff - he's got it all. You begin daydreaming of your future marriage and adorable children.....and then, he decides that his life is going in another direction and dumps you like a bad habit with a "let's be friends" and it's back to single life. Of course, there are a few, "this is fun for right now but we've got no future" dates in there and a few "he's great but our lifestyles clash" and a few "we'll try this long distance thing" and quite a few, "all I need is my friends, family and cat to be happy." But at long last, you find your true love and all is well and it's so nice knowing he's there and you hope you're one of the lucky ones whose relationship stands the test of time. Now subsitute the guy for childcare and you see that you have to go through all of this rigamaroll AGAIN! Different issues but same game! Well, I am pleased to say that after some crazy transitions in the family, that we are in love again and it feels so right. Cue Lionel Richie. We have found the perfect situation and it's been such a relief. To those of you out there looking...don't give up hope. "The One" is out there.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Ch-ch-ch-changes

Well, it's a sea of change for our little monkey. It's no wonder her sleep and eating patterns are all mixed up as she's got a lot going on! Though not as mobile as some of her boyfriends (I'm talking about you, Jack!), she is now trying to pull herself up onto things and holding herself steady. I also caught her rolling from her back to her stomach, which she's never done and when left sitting, she likes to flip herself onto her stomach and turn in a complete 360 (That's a 180, George). Her hand-eye coordination is getting really good and more cheerios end up in her mouth than the floor. Good progress and means less sweeping! Then there's the real news -- she's getting a tooth! Last night, there was nothing but today a little sharp ridge has popped up...literally overnight. I can't say yet how this is going to be for me nursing but it's an exciting milestone nonetheless. There was a part of me that wondered if perhaps she'd be the only kid in kindergarten with no teeth..... As far as solids go, she's eating all kinds of things now. I have been giving her little tastes of the things I am eating -- meatball, curry potatoes (not spicey) etc just to have her experience the flavors.The other day she had paella -- I just put it in the food grinder and she gobbled it up. Her favorite still seems to be carrots, sweet potato and mango. I try to mix it up though so she doesn't turn orange! The picture above features Ruby in her too cute sweater from her Great Aunt & Uncle in New York - thanks Aunt Anne and Uncle Steve! Well, it's late, she's finally asleep and it's time for me to catch up on last week's Gossip Girl, a show I hope will fill the void of 90210 (has it really been 7 years since it ended?) and the first season of The OC....only time and a few more episodes will tell.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

8 Months!

Unbelievably, Ruby is 8 months old. It's gone so fast and she's changed so much! She is super vocal and goes from these sweet little cooing noises to loud growling....just like Miss Piggy. She has eaten everything we've offered her and with gusto. No doubt about it that she comes from our gene pool. No teeth or crawling yet though it seems as though she's really working hard on both. She's been waking up in the middle of the night which is not at all the norm for her. I am wondering if this means she's trying to learn a skill? I won't complain but I do miss my long nights of sleep! Fall is now here much to my dismay. I was hoping for a few more nice days to get us in the mood for fall. However, we have leapt right into winter -- what's up with that? It was so chilly today. Nevertheless, I am glad because it just means that we are heading towards the holidays which is going to be fun! We got Ruby a costume and it is SO cute. And we are heading to the East Coast for Thanksgiving to visit the grandparents which will be super fun too. Oh compare Ruby at 6 weeks. Crazy! She just keeps getting cuter and cuter! It's hard to believe she was ever that small.... There's more to tell but I'll have to do that at another time because SOMEbody wants my attention...I can hear the "fake coughing" now. Clever monkey!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Holy Big Fat Baby, Batman!

I saw this article about a 17lb baby that was born in Siberia. To put that into perspective, Ruby is barely that big at 8 months! I am sure that the woman is grateful for C-Sections!Phew!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Ruby Takes No Guff

Just a quick funny story: Last weekend we went to the wedding of a friend. It was a lovely affair the bride was gorgeous, the groom dashing and the company fun. There were several babies there, in particular a baby boy of 6 months and 16 pounds -- just a little more than what our dear Ruby weighs. I had gone over to talk to the mom and see how her little one was doing since I hadn't seen him since he was just a few weeks old. He was in his car seat and I set Ruby next to him so they could see each other. Ruby let out an excited squawk and he startled and began to scream. I felt bad that he was scared but (not so) secretly thought it was hilarious. That's my girl!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Finger Foods

Ruby has started finger foods....she's getting good at picking up the cheerios but doesn't know to let go once she gets it into her mouth. It's a lot of fun to watch which makes up for all of the sweeping!

More Grandma Visits

Ruby has been having all kinds of good times this past weekend. Not only did she get to see her Grandma Genie again, but Great-Grandma Bette came to meet her aaaallll the way from the East Coast. It was great fun to introduce Ruby to this dear relative and Grandma Bette taught her all kinds of new songs and stories. We kept it pretty low key --- though we managed to fit in a trip to the market and a parade. Mostly, we just hung out and told stories, caught each other up on the family happenings and ate lots and lots of delicious meals. As you can see, Ruby was tickled pink to meet her Grandma Bette!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Where to begin...

Well, my posts have been lacking lately, mostly because we were all sick last week and then we had visitors so I wasn't able to sit down and do anything. However, we are well, we had a wonderful visit (more on that later) and now it's back to business. Ruby got herself a bit of a sniffle and consequently, my good little sleeper became a really bad sleeper. We were up several times in the night...mostly because her nose would get stuffed up and she couldn't breathe. So, it was a lot of getting up, rocking, suctioning and then back to bed. Then I got sick. Let me tell you, having kids takes all the fun out of being sick. But we have all recovered and are feeling much much better. Ruby is really using her voice more and more and gets so excited about things. She's discovered the cats and smiles and talks to them especially when she sees that Sparrow has jumped up on the bookshelf. Last night, after putting her to bed, I went up to check on her and Sparrow was cozily curled up at her feet. First I said, "Oh! How sweet!" then I kicked her (the cat) out of the crib. Anyway, she's just getting bigger every second and, as you can see from the photo, this hat form Auntie Carol now almost fits!

Baby Likes Rock Show

Ok, this is a picture of Ruby in her get-up so that she could see her dad play the drums at Bumbershoot. We took a tip from another mom and used a bandana to hold her earplugs in. She seemed to enjoy herself! Yah! Baby rock!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

And the hunt goes on....

Well, my hunt for daycare has yet to yield any satisfying results. I have interviewed several places and it's been discouraging to say the least. I talked to one woman yesterday that I really liked -- immediately, I got the warm fuzzies and knew she'd be good. Unfortunately, I can't afford her because she doesn't do part-time care. The second person I interviewed, scheduling and price weren't an issue. But her daycare was cluttery (junky), the yard unkempt and even though she knew I was coming 2 days in advance, hadn't bothered to print out her handbook. Earlier in the week I made an appointment with a place and when I arrived she wasn't there. All I can say with these last two is that if this is what happens when they are trying to sell themselves, what will happen when we are enrolled? NOT that that will happen but I just don't understand the mindset here. And I won't even go into the people who I've called that answer the phone with a grunt, don't have any idea how many kids they can take and are just plain rude. Sigh....makes me appreciate Ruby's current caregiver even more. I am trying to remain hopeful but am feeling more and more discouraged by the minute. Afterall, I think people should be lining up to pay ME to take care of Miss Ruby! Ha ha! In other news, Ruby had a little playdate with her pal Otto yesterday as I had an appointment in the afternoon. She helped Otto's mama bake a pie, played with his toys and barfed on his blanket. She seemed really intent on telling him stories and it was fun to watch the two of them interact. No teeth for her yet but she's been really drooly today. Might they be coming through? There's not much else to tell. I am just trying to stay positive though it's getting harder and harder. Today I am pretty much feeling just generally annoyed and unsatisfied but I think it's a result of the culmination of the events of this past summer and the current stresses of not having a safe place for my little peanut nailed down. At any rate, the general day to day stuff is just feeling like a little too much. I think that this means I need to chill this evening, enjoy my baby and watch something trashy on TV. More soon........

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Lost Dog

So the mama and papa of our new pal Ryder have lost their sweet dog. He was at a friend's home in Ballard while Ryder was being born and escaped Sunday morning. Please be on the lookout for him! For more info go to monkeypiewrench. Let's find Al! UPDATE!: Al has been found! Hurray!!

Sunday, September 2, 2007

I EAT DRUMS!

A week of visits and funny stuff

Well, we just finished up with a lovely visit from Dustin's parents who came all the way from the East Coast to visit Ruby for the first time. She greatly enjoyed meeting Papa & Grandma Miller. She also enjoyed all of the fun outings with them and her dad while they were here. These included a trip to Pike Place Market, a Mariner's game (where they began their now 9 game losing streak) and a visit to the Museum of Flight which was way cool. Papa Norm was the official stroller driver and kept her moving on our travels and I really think she misses all of those cuddles from Grandma. Good thing we will be seeing them again in just a few months! Ruby's ability to get things into her mouth is growing and we now have to be extra careful about what we give her and what she can reach. Anything within range of her chubby little hands is fair game so it's a fun trick trying to stay ahead of her. She's quick! She's not had any forumula other than that one time since I have been off work for some extra days so we haven't needed to use it. I am sure she's going to be having some this week though as I don't have much milk saved up for Tuesday yet. However, I had to go buy a brand new can of the stuff because my cat is a scavenger. Sparrow somehow pried the lid off of the can of formula, picked up the scoop, carried it underneath the kitchen table and managed to get formula all over the table and the floor in the dining room. I am normally pretty relaxed about the cats getting into stuff but this is a little too much. I just don't think I can give Ruby formula that I know the cat dug through with her little snout. Oh I just know that cat wishes she had thumbs! Ruby also had her first pedicure today! Kathy and I went to our favorite little nail place and brought Ruby along with us. While our nails were drying, the owner of the place whipped out her clippers and clipped her toenails. Superstar! Well, it's back to the grind on Tuesday and then next week, we get a visit from Grandma Genie and Great-Grandma Bette! This is going to be a real treat!

Welcome Ryder!

And another Ruby pal is born! Ryder Jack was born this morning at 12:17am -- a beautiful and healthy 8lbs 3 oz. Congratulations Brandy and Dave!! Ruby looks forward to many a playdate with Ryder. Cheers!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Formula Feedings

Well, it's come down to it. Our little monkey is on a feeding frenzy to rival all feeding frenzies. She has gone through every last bit of frozen milk we had stockpiled and despite my best efforts, I haven't been able to get 16 ounces a day to send with her to daycare (which she goes through in addition to her large jar of food). The most I can get out is about 5-6 oz during the day and then about 5 oz in the morning. So, two days ago, she had her first foray into the world of formula. I hear she didn't find it half bad. She took a few chugs, paused looked around and sucked the rest down. Further proof that she is indeed my child as she, so far, will eat just about anything. The mustard test will come later....I think her Aunties Kathy and Danielle will be responsible for that venture though as we have a "No Mootard" rule at our house. Anyway, logically I know that forumula is just fine and as long as she has enough to eat that's what counts, there's nothing wrong with it, she's still breastfeeding, lots of babies have only forumula and lived to tell and they had wonderful mothers...etc etc etc. It'll just take me a few days to work through my own emotional reaction to it. But I'll get over it...it's all good.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Fun Ruby Tricks

Well, I think Ruby's got a new trick on the horizon. When put on her stomach, she has taken to lifting herself waaaaay up on her arms and then kicking and flinging her legs....methinks crawling may be in the near future. I am both looking forward to this milestone and dreading it. Guess it's time to start putting all of that baby-proofing junk in.... Another new thing is that she is an eating MACHINE lately. She has always been a good little eater but just in the past week or so, she's taken it to a whole new level -- polishing off whole jars of carrots and every single bottle I send with her to daycare and still wanting more. This wouldn't be much of an issue if I could just feed her myself but I can see that keeping up with this demand is going to be impossible if I have to provide that much milk each day in a bottle. But it's wonderful to see those pudgy little legs grow! Her motor skills are getting better every day. She can hold her own bottle now (not that I get to witness this) and everything goes directly into her mouth. On Friday, while feeding her, she would take two bites, shove her thumb in her mouth for a couple of sucks (what I have dubbed the "thumb chaser") and then back for more bites. It made feeding go somewhat slow but the cute factor totally made up for it. Other than prepping for the visit of Papa & Grandma Miller, we are enjoying this lovely summer day in the NorthWest -- rainy and in the high 60's. This is my favorite kind of day....unless I am having a bbq.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Welcome Watts!

This just in! Our pals over on UsPlus now have a beautiful bouncing baby boy! Welcome to little Mr Watts!!! Ruby cannot wait to play with you little guy...though you are hardly little. At 8+ pounds, you are bigger than Ruby at one month..but never you mind. Congrats Laura and Shawn! You are both going to be wonderful parents. And Herbie -- you'll be a wonderful big brother. Grins all around!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Uncle Jay!

Ruby met her Uncle Jay last week, the first of the Miller clan to meet her. They had lots of fun together! She loooves her Uncle Jay! Next week Papa and Grandma Miller are coming out for a visit. Hurray!

Empty Nest....

Well, the girlies are back at home, settling in and getting ready for school to start in a week or so. The house is infinitely quieter without them here and we sure miss them..especially Ruby. They were both SO helpful with her and could make her laugh like crazy. And now, taking care of just one munchkin seems like a vacation! Here are my three ladies, getting ready with all their lids on (yes, Sienna's says "I heart Duran Duran and no, she doesn't know who that is). Ruby had her 6 week appointment -- a couple of weeks late but I had stuff going on!-- and she is a superstar. Well, those weren't the exact words the doctor used but you get the idea. She weighed in at a whopping 13 pounds and 24.5 inches long (though I am pretty sure she's longer than that). The girls were with me at the doctor's appointment and were very helpful in watching her for me. Estelle even remembered to ask the doctor about a little mark Ruby has on her chin that I had forgotten to ask about. Thank goodness she was there! And now that I have a few less things on my plate, I get to focus on finding childcare for Miss Ruby, AGAIN! My daycare that I loooved is changing its focus and will no longer be taking infants. Bummer. I was hoping they could grandbaby her in..I mean, she WILL be a preschooler in just a few short years...but no dice. So, back to the drawing board. Ugh. I have a few prospects so hopefully it won't be too long before I have something. I hope. Please...oh please. Ruby is getting so strong and grabs everything and shoves it directly into her mouth. She's decidedly more vocal these days too. Dustin and I were just remarking about how much fun she is now. I've almost been late to work a few times because I got caught up in a game of peek-a-boo. Oops. But seriously folks, who could blame me?

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Baby's Got a New Lid

Here is Ruby in her new hat that Auntie Jeany got for her in Montana. How cute is that!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Musings on the PBJ

As I was making myself a peanut butter & jelly sandwich this morning, I was thinking about how when my mom makes them, they taste SO much better. Then I thought about how Ruby will one day think that the peanut butter & jelly sandwiches I make will taste so much better than when she makes them. Which makes me think that PBJ's have just been going down in quality through the years...and then I thought, "Damn. How good was that very first PBJ!??" Can you tell it's been a long week?

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Harry Potter Fever!

We've all got it at our house. Even Ruby. This little girl will be receiving a set of the books at some point. I have finished the last book and I am sad that it's the end but also happy that I got through it without being influenced by spoilers! Estelle is about halfway through.

Reading to Baby

Estelle and Sienna have been a huge help and having lots of fun with Ruby. Here are a couple of shots of them reading to her:

Messy Baby

Here are some pics of Ruby after eating her first foods, avocado mixed with breastmilk and carrots. It's pretty messy!

A Girl's Gotta Eat!

Here's Ruby's first bit of carrots. As you can see, she knows exactly what to do.

6 months

Well, as we try to adjust to this new world with no daddy and no grandpa, Ruby continues to bring us joy and awe (much much better than 'shock and awe' don't you think?). She's nearing her 6 month birthday and has become so much more verbal in the past couple of weeks. Though she's not seeming all that interested in rolling over (been there, done that) she did learn to sit up. One day she couldn't and then while playing with Jack, boom, she's sitting up. This means several things...she can use a high chair now, she's ready for food and we can plop her down on a blanket outside to play. Fantastic! Ruby was a star all weekend when in Idaho....going from person to person with nary a peep and smiling away. She had a TON of fun playing with Jack and even got to meet her Grandpa Jack. Yay! Jack is a superstar roller going from his back to his belly (wow!) and is full of smiles. Dustin, who had never met little Jack, was smitten with the (not-so) little guy right away.
Ruby also did a little wading at the swimming hole and hung out with all of her aunties. It was an incredibly exhausting weekend and though the reason for it was sad we did get to share the love with many amazing and wonderful people. The outpouring of support from so many people lifted our spirits and reinforced our notion that our daddy was a pretty amazing guy.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Goodbye Grandpa

On July 19, 2007, our beloved grandpa, daddy, husband, ex-husband, brother and friend died. We will miss him dearly. I am so glad that he got to meet Ruby and that she got to spend some time with him. She will always know what a wonderful grandpa she had. I will tell her all about his wonderful wit, his kind heart and the way that he enriched the lives of those around him. So, our hearts are a little broken but we can take comfort in how lucky we all were to have him in our lives.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Itsy BitsyTeeny Weeny Polka Dot Bikini

Quilt

This is a pictureof the quilt that my many family and friends contributed to. It's long been a tradition in our circle to celebrate first babes with a quilt and I am so touched to have received one....especially considering all that's going on. This is going to be a very special family treasure.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Whew...catching our breath...

It's been a crrrazy couple of weeks.... We went off to Idaho to visit the grandparents, cousins, pals etc. Unfortunately, when we got there, we found out that grandpa (my dad) had gotten really sick the night before and was in the ICU. So, our quick pleasure trip turned into a longer trip full of visits to the hospital and hanging out in the waiting room and ICU. Fortunately, grandpa is a very strong man who has many many people that love him and he was able to get through it. He's still in the hospital but hoping to get out fairly soon. But, wow...it was a little (lot) scary there for a bit. Ruby didn't get to visit with grandpa on this trip since they don't let little munchkins in the ICU which was sad for grandpa and for her. However, we will be back so she can show Grandpa all of her cool tricks!
Though this was a huge bummer and mighty stressful for all, there were some really nice spots and points where we just realized how lucky we are. No matter, we were always surrounded by wonderful and supportive people and even shared some laughs. It always amazes me just how many truly awesome people I know........... My mom came down, my step-mom was there, Amy's mom and then there were friends of theirs who we've known most or all of our lives. Also, two women, Courtenay and Adrienne -- they used to babysit me and now have adorable little munchkins of their own. It was a crazy full-circle kind of thing. When I was little Adrienne used to give me all of her hand-me-downs -- I remember being so excited in the 2nd grade when she gave me a shirt with one of those iron on pictures of a horse (you know..from "T-shirts Plus") and a pair of gauchos...HOT! (it was the 70's people!) Well, she gave me another box of hand-me-downs but this time it was kid clothes and diapers. SWEET!! Anyway, like I say, it was so nice and comforting to be around all of these people that I've known forever and who are my extended family. I really truly believe that my dad pulled through because of the immense amount of positive energy that was put forth during those days by so many people and that's saying something from a cynic like me.
It was super bloody hot there - 103 degrees at one point so we tried to stay in the air conditioning as much as possible. Ruby is not a fan of extreme heat and had a hard time with it. Mostly she would just scream in her car seat until we got inside and then she was fine. Poor monkey!
We stayed with Aunties Marie and Lori and it was great fun to see them! Plus there were many playdates with Jack and aunties, grandmas and cousins galore and Ruby saw many new faces...and she rocked them all (to quote Bon Jovi). Amy's birthday was that weekend too (Happy Birthday!) so it was fun to spend it with her for the first time in many years. And we got SO many great shots of the two little buzzards together. Turns out we make cute babies, Amy and I! Here's yet another..... I think my Ruby may be a bit bossy from the looks of this picture. Jack's not going anywhere if she has anything to do with it. And here are the ducky outfits...
Well, there's more coming but thought I'd at least catch up a little. Cheers!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Oh..Ashley!

Here's Ruby all dressed up for the barbeque at the Wilkes Plantation. Those darn Tarleton twins have been flirting with her all afternoon. The handsome stranger over by the dip looks interesting, but she heard he's a bit of a scalawag. Too bad she's stuck talking with that drip, Melanie. Sigh...oh where is Ashley?!?

5 Months

Well, Miss Ruby turned 5 months this week and she just keeps getting cuter and cuter IMHO! She had a pretty exciting week to mark her 5 Month-aversary. She went on her first field trip with daycare last Tuesday. They all went to the Seattle Aquarium and her teacher said she was fascinated by the fish on the ceiling and had to carry her around flat on her back because she was craning her neck so. That same day, we went to Safeco for the Boston vs Mariners game. Needless to say, she was exhausted by the time we got home and slept for 10 hours. Since we have some split loyalties with this match-up, we comprimised and had her in her anti-Yankees t-shirt - smile.
On Friday, we went over to the UW and she met my old advising pal, Clay and then saw the crew in Space Grant. As an added bonus she got to meet Miss Aine. She was so sweet and just like holding a penny. It's so hard to believe that Ruby was ever that tiny!
Ruby is doing new things every day. She's really into playing with her toes these days and has started grabbing them and trying to get them into her mouth. Speaking of, I can tell when she's interested in something because her mouth opens really wide....if it gets close to her it goes right in her mouth! Her favorites are still banana man and her ladybug book. She enjoys looking at books a lot (thank goodness!) and her name is now on the "wall of fame" at the library for finishing her ten books for summer reading. Yay!
She's still pukey....does it really stop at 6 months? Please??? Today she outdid herself yet again. I was feeding her, she stopped eating, looked up at me and projected it right onto my face. Good times. I could do nothing but laugh........
Later this week we are heading off to Idaho to visit the Grandparents. Amy and Jack will be there so that's going to be great fun to get the two babes back together. Plus she'll get to meet her cousins, Estelle and Sienna, who will be coming back to stay with us for a while. A full house, yes but lots of fun too! More soon....