Archive for category barf

Amazing

On Friday night, in a mad dash to prepare for a much-needed outing with friends, my goal was to tackle the bedtime shuffle and then focus on the other stuff, i.e., getting myself dressed, picking up a little, doing some dishes and some cleaning.

As luck would have it, the kid protested bedtime. For 35 minutes.

Of course he did.

And so, I needed help.

“What can I do?” Jeff asked.

Pointing to the parade of plastic cars, random bowls and chewed-up board books I begged, “Can you help me pick up all these toys?”

“Oh, and would you mind cleaning the toilet super-quick, too?”

Clean toilets are a must—even for the babysitter.

After I tidied up the kitchen, it was finally time to dress myself. Only 20 minutes to spare.

On my hands and knees, searching for that brown flip flop that Jack hid, I heard, “Tchhhhhhhhhhh. Tcchhhhhhhhhh. TCCCCCCCCHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.”

And then I smelled exactly what I heard: Lysol Crisp Linen.

And then I tasted it.

YUCK!

In our tiny closet-sized bathroom, Jeff commandeered a mushroom cloud of Lysol to tackle the task at hand. Because three small sprays just was not enough.
Oh, yes he did.

Ostensibly, I was grateful for his help (I always am!!) As usual, there’s a but…

“BUT, that’s not how I usually do it,” I told him.

I showed him the Seventh Generation bathroom spray right next to the Lysol.

“I just spray things down with this, but no biggie. It’s cool.”

*hack* I gagged and coughed for good measure. My God, it stunk.

“Oh, yeah, I guess I did go a little overboard,” he admitted.

Unable to wait for the cloud to clear, I held my breath and excused myself to use the newly Super-Sanitized toilet.

YUCK. *hack* YUCK

I opened the door, scowled and quietly confessed, “You see, the problem with using that much Lysol is that my ass now smells like Crisp Linen.”

And without hesitation he explains, “If it’s any consolation, I think it’s extremely sexy.

hahaha.

He laughed at me, I laughed at him. We laughed at each other.

We have our moments that stink, but this wasn’t one of them. haha!

This, my friends, is the father of my child. He lifts me up daily, makes sure we’re on the straight and narrow, keeps me sane and yes, he makes me laugh endlessly. Lysol-ass included.

The way our little boy looks at him with such admiration and intrigue, it gets me every time. To hear the two of them laugh and giggle like they’re the best of friends is an instant anti-depressant. Oh, and the family days…I just can’t get enough. Everything in life comes so easily to him, and fatherhood suits him just as well.

There isn’t much more to add to my many diatribes about how wonderful he is, but to sum it up, yeah, he kicks ass.

Undoubtedly.

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Happy Father’s Day, babe. You rock!

**

To my incredible dad, thank you for all you do! You continue to inspire me daily.

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On the mend

Happy Monday!  If things look a little different today, that’s because they are…

Being in quarantine has its advantages, apparently.  While Jack was on the mend, I started to feel run-down and ill myself.  To fight off everyone’s sicknesses, we took it easy this weekend.  So, I found myself working on this site to spruce it up a bit.  I’ve been neglecting this site with the launch of NKT, and plus, the other theme was getting so cluttered, much like our apartment :)   So, I decided it was time for another overhaul!  I have a few more networking events this week, so I thought I’d look a little more presentable for a change.

Jack’s still under the weather, but definitely much better than he was on Friday.  After my pig flu rant, Jack’s temp spiked up to 103.  With Jeff stuck in traffic, I had an “Oh crap what am I supposed to do now” moment.  I wasn’t sure whether to pack him in the stroller and walk the 5 blocks to the pediatrician or take him to the ER.  I’m pretty sure I was *this* close to asking for advice on Facebook.  103 was friggin’ high!

I ignored both instincts.

Instead, I sat and rocked a sick little boy in the chair.   Thankfully his fever broke through the night.

His nose so raw from wiping, his eyes all teary from misery, my boy was the sickest he’s ever been.  The rest of the weekend involved spending almost all of Saturday afternoon at the dr’s office and then embracing the usual sick kid routine—changing many diapers from an upset belly, shoving Pedialyte down his throat, ignoring/disciplining/dealing with tantrums and hugging.  Lots of hugging.

Sleep is stil a bit off, but the worst was that EARLY morning waking at 3am.  He didn’t go back to bed at all.  Thank goodness Jeff was around to help that morning because that’s when I started to feel sick.  It’s a vicious cycle, I tell ya.

Though the weekend was tough on all of us, there are definitely signs of things looking up.

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Different shades of an intoxicatingly green Saturday

On Saturday, we woke up to a roar of hearty voices out on the streets. It was barely 7am and a sea of green was already flooding the neighborhood. This past weekend was our town’s annual St. Patty’s Day parade, but for many, parade day translates into a huge drunkfest. With drinking into oblivion as the main objective, scores of out of towners come into our small mile-square city by trains, buses and if they’re crazy, cars.

In a different lifetime, the first Saturday of March was always reserved for morning till night bouts of debauchery, corned beef and cabbage, green wardrobe explosions, messy parties in way-too-small spaces and of course, good times with good friends. We’ve been known to start drinking mimosas, kegs and eggs at 9am with the nuttiest of them all. Unlike the many amateurs that ruin it for those that actually live here, we love to party, yet our translation of partying doesn’t equal fall-down-drunkenness and public acts of ridiculousness. I like to pretend I’ve become wise in my old age, or at least smarter in THAT sense. We’re seasoned pros, afterall; just a few short years ago, we were childless and hangovers didn’t equate into a next day death sentence.

Jen and Jeff St. Patty's Day 2006But alas, we set out to enjoy parade day with a whole new perspective.  Because our friends are all busy with their own lives and no one really expressed interest in this year’s St. Patty’s Day festivities, I wrote it off and marked it as a family fun day. So, for the first time, we actually attended the parade—yup, the actual parade for which all the drunken activities originally stemmed. Our first parade was so much fun. We walked over with our neighbors and enjoyed the new sights and sounds of St. Patty’s Day festivities. I never really realized how many organizations and bands participated! The bagpipes, horns and glockenspiels certainly completed this whole new perspective. It was a good time, and one that Jack thoroughly enjoyed.

My favorite band in the whole parade!Hoboken fire truck
crowds at the paradeattempt at self portrait

Even though we only walked a 6 block distance to the parade, walking amidst all the partyers, felt like we were on a different planet. A sober, less tragic one. A planet where I looked in the mirror before leaving the house. A planet where I could still walk in a straight line at 1pm. One where I could see in single, unblurred vision. It felt like we were being Punk’d, where Ashton Kutcher could’ve come around the corner to surprise us— it was THAT weird to be some of the only sober folks in a sea of lunacy.   Jack had a nice glimpse of what the circus is like!

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When motherly instincts and past experiences converge

The past 24 hours have gone from bad to worse, at least in terms of the kid’s health.  It’s amazing to me how, in just a few hours, a lingering cough could morph into a full-on stomach bug, complete Pedialyte and uh, lots of carpet cleaner.  Spoiler alert:  last night wasn’t pretty to say the least.

In all those mommy how-to books, they don’t discuss the “real” issues like what to do when your kid projectile vomits all over the place.  It’s pretty common sense, yes, but after the fallout, I was a bit perplexed on what to do next, since in the past, particularly before I became a mom, I wasn’t really sober when things got that messy.  (In more recent times, I was often the one cleaning up friends and holding back ponytails.) When the motherly instinct kicked in, I put a sickened Jack in the tub, “just in case” and to contain any aftershocks.  The kid in tub tactic ended up working out and surprisingly, my own gag reflex didn’t go into overdrive.

And they say nothing good ever happens after 1am.  Bad things DO happen, but you learn from them. At least I always did…hahaha.

Back to the kid…right before it was time to go make dinner, we went from mommy and Jack watching Yo Gabba Gabba together on the chair to complete chaos.  After scrubbing us both off, the kid and I got dressed.  A few minutes later, we cabbed it to the pediatrician after Jeff confirmed with the dr’s office that we needed to bring him in.  (There’s a nasty bug lingering around town with lots of babies getting super sick.)  We sat in a sick-kid filled waiting room as Jack insisted on roaming around the halls.  An hour and a half later, the doc tells us that yes, his temp was teetering at 102.7 and had all the symptomatic signs of a viral infection.

No antibiotics are necessary, thank goodness; but the doctor recommended Tylenol as needed and plenty of fluids.  We went with the Pedialyte popcicles and Gatorade.  As he climbs in and out of his laundry basket of toys, laughing and giggling, it’s so hard to tell he’s sick.  The biggest giveaway is the total meltdown when he’s tired or super uncomfortable.  Since the weather is supposed to dip to unreal temperatures this week,  I plan to isolate ourselves so that Jack gets better and is well in time for Auntie Kris’ visit this weekend.

Forced isolation in these temps won’t be so hard, I’m sure.  Ask me again in a few days :)

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Mama Likey: cleaning products

When I’m not busy perusing the endcaps at Target in search of more stuff that I probably don’t need, I can probably be found wagging my finger at my husband, and now my baby, chanting, “Because of you, I’ll never have nice things.”

Surely, I jest.

It’s not just them. I’m to blame, too!

But really? It’s kinda sorta true. If it’s not barf stains on the floor or baby poop stains on my white sheets, it’s coffee explosions. It’s always going to be something. I’m as clumsy as they get, so let’s face it: the stains are here to stay.

Or are they?
Our cleaning arsenal includes the run of the mill toxic cleaners to the laundry detergent sticks. As we started to Green our home over the years, we added the more eco-friendly alternatives like Method (which is too fragrant for my liking) and the Seventh Generation staples. The greenest alternative to all of the above would be using mundane ingredients already onhand at home such as, baking soda and vinegar, but with many product manufacturers cashing in on the Green market, there are now more alternatives to cleaning supplies for mainstream consumers.

But since the Product Pusher delivered, I thought I’d review a few cleaning goodies that we’ve had a chance to try.

mn_stainremover-copy.jpgWith our big boy eating so much, so often, it’s inevitable: he poops a lot. And when I mean a lot, I mean A LOT. Since I’ve introduced formula into his weekday regimen, you guessed it, “things” changed. Put it this way, I’ve had to throw pajamas away because cleaning the er, uh “disaster” would’ve been a lost cause. Every once in awhile, we’ll be fortunate to have a more containable mess. More recently, Jack had a smaller accident on a pair of jeans and a basic cotton onesie. It was the perfect opportunity to test out this baby stain remover.
We applied the Mother Natural stain remover to the affected areas of the clothes, let it sit and then soaked for a few minutes. Everyone knows that these sort of stains are tough, so naturally, (pun intended) I didn’t think the stain remover would help. When it was time to check on the stained clothes, minutes turned to hours, but to my surprise, the stain remover did a decent job at diminishing the once very yellow stain. I say diminish, because unlike the more stronger heavy duty conventional stain removers, the Mother Natural stain remover did a more gentle job at lifting the stains. The stain was still there, but just barely. And so, once I finally washed those clothes, the stain was almost completely removed. Almost, but not quite!
I was pretty pleased with the Mother Natural stain remover. It did its job and I felt ok knowing that the baby’s clothes weren’t completely doused in bleaches and a host of unpronounceable chemicals that would possibly add to his already itchy belly (thanks to my family’s history of bad skin.)
The manufacturers say the stain remover includes: Plant cleansers derived from natural sources such as coconut and palm, natural salts, natural enzymes, natural moisturizer, distilled water, and plant based essential oils.

While I’m on a (virtual) cleaning foray, I wanted to mention a mainstay in the diaper bag. When Jack was being passed from uncle to auntie and back to mom the other weekend, unexpected spit up was bound to happen. Unfortunately, my brother Jeff was tagged with his nephew’s spiddle. My older brother, unsure how to react, handed me back the babe and motioned for my pant leg.
giovannirecharge.jpgYeah, my pant leg.

I wagged my finger at him, told him to hold on and instinctively grabbed for these wipes. I grabbed the very convenient silver packet, i.e., Uncle Jeff’s savior from the baby mess.
Thanks to the Product Pusher, we carry around these Giovanni Recharge wipes that are the much more sophisticated (check out the dramatics on their site,) eco-friendly big sister to Wet Naps. The Giovanni packets come in a pouch with 20 individually wrapped biodegradable, antibacterial, antiseptic, sanitizing and moisturizing wipes. I did notice that these wipes, like most antiseptic hand cleansers, include Benzalkonium chloride, which is known to be an allergen.

Nevertheless, they are a nice change of pace, in terms of quick refreshers or clean ups. I like the fact that, as their name implies, they are refreshing. They come in four different scents; I personally like the Recharge Peppermint because of the minty scent and subtle tingle.

Not just for baby cleanups, I have several of these lying in the wings of my work bag…because if it’s not the baby, it’s usually me dribbling coffee down my hands and sleeves.

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Adventures in Babysitting (or daycare)

A few weeks ago, taking cues from my two favorite message boards and various experienced moms, I thought it would be time to start researching daycare options.

I realize there are several different schools of thought on the baby-rearing issue. I have no time/interest for judgment or to judge on the aforementioned issue, but I do know that I’d like to learn which option would work best for us.

In an ideal world, I would not stay home and be a mom. Let me rephrase that:  I could not stay home. I just don’t have that capacity. I admire those that do, but I would crash and burn on the first day. Instead, I would prefer to find a happy mix: work a few hours, take a nap, work a few more hours, come home, be a mom and wife. (squeeze in a little happy hour some where!)

In the real world, unfortunately, I’m learning firsthand that a lot of sacrifice is involved in finding that happy mix. (Dad was so right.)

Which brings me back to the whole daycare debacle…I’m barely out of the 1st trimester—well over 6 months before I deliver— and I’m already looking for childcare.

You are crazy, is probably what you’re saying.

Well, in addition to the whole balance/sacrifice thing, I’m rapidly learning that having a baby in a city is nothing like suburban living. First example, wait lists for daycare facilities in our childcare lacking neighborhood are over a year long. I’d need a daycare place by December—9 months away.

Once upon a time, we swore up and down that we’d “move back to Va. when it was time to have kids.” Problem is, you can’t make plans around nature, nor can you make plans around a crappy job market. Both of our jobs happen to be in and around NYC. That’s a fact. So, again, here we are back at the whole balance/sacrifice thing.

So, back to the childcare: Who knew it would create such a debacle? We’ve always planned for childcare to be a large expense because of our location and distant proximity to family. But wow.

I had my first appointment at, I guess you would say, our first choice daycare facility. This place is located pretty close to the main drag, just a few blocks from our house. Those blocks are a huge determining factor, by the way, when you’re sprinting home in the rain, hoping to make it in time for Access Hollywood.

strollers.jpg
{not my picture and this is actually in nyc}

Since the daycare place is across the street from the bus stop, I approached the place and saw the same familiar arsenal of Bugaboo strollers padlocked to the front gate.

I mention these specific strollers not only because they’re one of the trendiest strollers right now (I decided that this brand isn’t practical for us, but I’m still coveting one) but they’re also one of the more expensive lines around. The strollers are indicative to our neighbors and the clientele at the daycare center.

Dudes, I cut coupons almost every Sunday afternoon. I often peruse the bargain racks at Old Navy and Target. I love lots of cheap wine (when I’m not pregnant of course) Perhaps that’s indicative to the type of people we are?

When I met the director of the facility and upon first impression, I thought she was very articulate despite the wimpy handshake. She gave me her spiel and assured me that everything’s clean, up to par and really wonderful. The childcare to provider ratio is reasonable. And of course, everyone has the proper certifications. I’m very impressed. There’s a lot of structure and balance for the older kids—it just seems like a great place for child care.

After the tour and all the basic information, the director remembered to give me the rates. She told me how much it cost per month and at first, I’m not shocked. I’ve priced other places in the area and it seemed comparable- somewhat. I’m all cool until I absorb that astronomical number.

I thanked the director and walked the 4 blocks home. While I walked, I did the math, this place was almost $600 more expensive than other places in the area. Not only that, but it was MORE expensive than our lofty rent.

Not to reveal too much info., but our rent isn’t exactly cheap. Actually, it’s close to 2 times my parents’ former mortgage. Granted, we do live less than a mile from a major metropolis and it is to be expected, but seriously, it’s still rent. It’s not glamorous by any means. And this daycare facility is asking us to pay them more than what we pay for our humble living space?

When Jeff got home, he asked me all about the daycare tour. I tell him how beautiful this facility is, how the place would be really wonderful and how convenient it would be for us.

As always, he gets straight to the point.

“So, how much does it cost?”

“uh. A lot of money. Like, more than our rent.”

“Oh cool, so WE get to LIVE there too?”

Smartass.

Not only am I in total shock now, but I’m even more afraid of our other daycare alternatives (I’ll get into that another day but Jeff’s #1 option involves my mom and me going even crazier.)

But as Jeff would say, it’s not always about me.

Au contraire!

 

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Say it ain’t so…

Despite my reluctance, but at the suggestion of Dr. B, I started to take Unisom this weekend.  I’ve had insomnia problems in the past and had to rely on Tylenol PM for awhile, so I didn’t want to fall into that habit again.

The nausea got so bad there for a few days, I really wanted to just curl up on the couch and stay there until September.  So, I tried it.  I started off with a half tab on Friday night– nada.  I woke up Saturday feeling ‘normal,’ but proceeded to start gagging at noon when I got hungry.

So, on Saturday night, I took a whole tablet.  I woke up on Sunday much later than usual, and really never “woke up” until about 1pm.  I think I layed on the couch in the same position for 4 uneventful hours.  I attributed my Sunday laziness to the Unisom.  I mean, on a regular Sunday, I would’ve been to Target, ShopRite, BB&B and back by noon!
Despite the grogginess, I only gagged 3 times, as opposed to normal 33 times in a day!  I was amazed. 

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On Sunday night, I took another whole Unisom, hoping I wouldn’t be too groggy for deadline week at work.  Much to my surprise, I woke up sans alarm, and felt pretty kickass.  I wasn’t ready to go back to hip hop class or anything, but I was actually halfway pumped to put makeup on– the first time in 3 weeks, mind you.

I got through most of my entire workday without gagging or feeling too nauseous.  Amazing.  I have yet to commute home, so let’s hope this great feeling lasts!

 btw, I had my first crazy pregnancy dream this weekend.  Updates tonight.

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Say it ain’t so…

Despite my reluctance, but at the suggestion of Dr. B, I started to take Unisom this weekend.  I’ve had insomnia problems in the past and had to rely on Tylenol PM for awhile, so I didn’t want to fall into that habit again.

The nausea got so bad there for a few days, I really wanted to just curl up on the couch and stay there until September.  So, I tried it.  I started off with a half tab on Friday night– nada.  I woke up Saturday feeling ‘normal,’ but proceeded to start gagging at noon when I got hungry.

So, on Saturday night, I took a whole tablet.  I woke up on Sunday much later than usual, and really never “woke up” until about 1pm.  I think I layed on the couch in the same position for 4 uneventful hours.  I attributed my Sunday laziness to the Unisom.  I mean, on a regular Sunday, I would’ve been to Target, ShopRite, BB&B and back by noon!
Despite the grogginess, I only gagged 3 times, as opposed to normal 33 times in a day!  I was amazed. 

200.jpg

On Sunday night, I took another whole Unisom, hoping I wouldn’t be too groggy for deadline week at work.  Much to my surprise, I woke up sans alarm, and felt pretty kickass.  I wasn’t ready to go back to hip hop class or anything, but I was actually halfway pumped to put makeup on– the first time in 3 weeks, mind you.

I got through most of my entire workday without gagging or feeling too nauseous.  Amazing.  I have yet to commute home, so let’s hope this great feeling lasts!

 btw, I had my first crazy pregnancy dream this weekend.  Updates tonight.

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Pukey McPuke

For the past month or so, I’ve been gagging endlessly and trying not to puke almost every hour of every day. Thankfully, I’m not actually puking, but I wish I could… As mentioned before, I feel hungover from the moment I get up to the minute I close my eyes at night. Some days are certainly worst than others, but on average, I pretty much feel ill every waking hour.

16real190.jpg To the various people that I’ve complained to about my “morning” sickness, it seems everyone has their own remedy. In addition, I’ve been reading what other pg. ladies have been doing on the message boards. For the most part, it’s the same mundane advice: try Sea Bands (those accupressure bands for motion sickness), gingerale, comfort food, etc. Sadly none of these suggestions have done a thing for me. If anything, I have more aversions to all of the above (and more!) Currently, I loathe Coke (gasp) or any soda, peas (?), some meat, cold coffee and anything too ‘smelly.’

The only things that seem to bring me any relief is taking a long nap and eating a lot of mini meals throughout the days. Sounds a lot like hibernating, no?

While I don’t mind the mini meals consisting of crackers, nuts and fruit, it’s hard to resist a cheeseburger or ice cream when I’m feeling really sorry for myself. ha. Other things I still love: ice cold bottled water, very ripe mango (lots of it!), mac and cheese, Trader Joe’s Oyster Crackers, these specific lemon drops, Ice Breakers sours and fresh fruit.

In a roundabout way, I’ve never been so grateful to feel so pukey and miserable. As I was telling someone the other day, all of this nausea and gagging makes me believe that things are hopefully going the way they’re supposed to… Well, according to the Times, this sickness doesn’t necessarily indicate a healthy pregnancy.  On a positive note however, morning sickness is associated with a lower rate of miscarriage.

While this all-day feeling of misery may plain old suck, I’ve never been happier for feeling this crappy!

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