Friday, January 30, 2009
Thursday, January 29, 2009
About a year ago I started to buy baby gifts that I actually thought were great, useful things that I either found on my own through trial and error or was something that someone gave me that I liked and found useful -- instead of the cute little outfit (which is always a fine standby -- unless it is horribly ugly and looks like something that your Aunt Muriel hand knitted from a 1975 baby pattern) or other crap that you get that you never use and/or don't like -- not that you were not appreciative to receive it. We all did it -- we all went buck wild with the baby registry -- registering for stuff that we had no idea about but looked neat and useful -- got it and then found that it was not so useful, a pain in ass to deal with and clean, and/or your kid hated it. So I want some suggestions of a some things that you all really like.
JD, my good friend, super neighbro extraordinaire, and fellow NMS member is soon to be first time mom. I would like to impart some of "our" wisdom on her. Please feel free to disagree with anything I have below -- that is the purpose of this -- to find out who likes what and why as well as what they do not like about certain things.
Here are my favorites:
1. Aveeno Baby Wash and Lavender Lotion -- I have tried a lot of different soaps, but this one stood out way beyond the others. Q has a soft, easily irritated skin and this one was a soap and shampoo combination that cleaned and did not irritate, left his hair clean and not greasy -- and it has a nice clean and very light fragrance. The lotion is a good creamy lotion -- the lavender can be overpowering sometimes, but all in all I do think the scent helps calm him and ready him for bed.
2. Diapees and Wipees -- this is a neat little pouch that you can easily put in your purse and/or keep in your car without having to tote around a giant diaper bag. It is made to hold several diapers, a small pack of wipes, and if your crafty (like me) you can squeeze in a small tube of cream. I love mine -- I ordered it online years ago -- but I have seen something similar at Target. Note: Diapees and Wipees is a brand name -- but I have seen these under other names if you go to look for them.
3. Links - An absolute must have for babies that are still in carriers and/or in a highchair or portable highchair seat -- especially at restaurants. Clip several of the links together -- attach one end to the the carrier handle or high chair and then clip the other end to a favorite toy or even a juice cup/bottle and you are set. The babies play with their stuff and you do not have to constantly PICK UP stuff off of the floor -- because it is attached. Note: Every company under the sun has a version of these that they sell -- I do not have a favorite -- but make sure that they are a good, strong and thick because the babies tend to pull hard on them especially when they are in the carriers and/or car seats such that flimsy ones may actually break and pop back and hit Jr. in the face.
4. Bibs with Pockets (especially if they have a rubber coating on them): Some of my favorite bibs I have ever found -- I got from K-Mart. I love them. They are giant. They have a oil cloth-type backing with a rubberized front and series of snaps that allow you to wear the bib flat and/or snap them up to make the bottom into a cup. They are heavy and can take an entire cup of juice in the pocket. They are easily cleaned -- just wipe them down with a little Clorox Anywhere Spray (to be mentioned later) and eventually run them through the wash. Bibs must have pockets. Yes, they can be cumbersome, but I would rather deal with cumbersome than having to devote time later to hosing down all of Q's clothes in spray and wash and then sweeping up all of the stuff that fell (you still may need to do this regardless -- but you have to sweep up less :) ).
This is not my actual bib -- but the closest thing I could find on the net.
5. Aquaphor: The "ointment" of all "ointments" the "cream" of all "creams" -- the Grand PooBah of baby butts (and faces). I love this stuff. I use it instead of diaper rash cream. I also use it on his face and cheeks when his skin is chapped from the cold and it cures it overnight. I also rub it on scratches and they too disappear overnight (small superficial ones -- not any gushers!)... I have even been known to use it on my lips before I go to bed, when they are chapped. I can't say enough about it. Some people like Boudreaux's Butt Paste and others like Desitin. I thought Boudreaux's was gritty and I have used Desitin when he got an actual diaper rash, but that only occurred like 2 times. My rule is -- if he does a stinky, use the aquaphor every time. If the hiney looks a little red, use the aquaphor -- and as a result he has had very few diaper rashes.
6. Sweet Pea Gowns: Soft, open-bottomed gowns that usually have an elastic band (or drawstring) that runs around the opening at the bottom to somewhat close it up so that little feet and legs stay warm. They are great because they keep the baby warm and comfortable and baby butts (for diaper changes) are easily accessible as opposed to footed p.j.s and little pants that have to be removed and then put back on. I used those as long as they made them big enough for little man. Note: A bit of trivia -- the style of "sweet pea gowns" are named after "Sweet Pea" -- Popeye's little boy -- from the comics of old. Sweet Pea always wore them.
7. Puffs: A tasty little snack food made by Gerber. They are little puffed stars that are easier to chew and digest than Cheerios. They come in several flavors and Q must have eaten at least 20 lbs. of them so far and he still eats them. You can easily take them places and they do not make a mess. Sweet Potato is my favorite!
8. Mr. Potato Head: The best toy on the planet for a two year old. It generally entertains them to no end. It is not terribly educational, but entertaining and sometimes you just need them to sit down and shut up. They also make little Mr. Potato heads that come with one set of each part and are about the size of new potato which are the perfect size to fit into a bag to take to a restaurant or so on. I found that one at the Dollar General for like $3.00. Hands down my two-year old gift of choice.
9. Twilight Turtle: Twilight Turtle is a stuffed turtle with a hard plastic shell that actually has star shaped holes cut into the back. Light is projected from within Twilight, through his holes where he projects stars on to the ceiling of the room. You can choose the color of the stars, blue, green or amber -- we always use green. The placement of the stars is supposed to be accurate and it comes with a star guide map. Q obviously can't identify constellations yet -- but that is not why I bought it. It was a perfect "calming nightlight". He would lay on his back with the soft green stars above and drift off to sleep. I got it for him when he was about 5 mos. old and he still uses one to this day except we have now gone to a ladybug that does the same thing. Good thing for kids who are scared of the dark.
11. Classical Baby DVDs by HBO: HBO did a series called Classical Baby that they may still air. I bought my first copy (Art) at Target and then when I realized how cool they were went on to Amazon and purchased the remainder of the series ("music" and "dance" -- and I believe they may now have "poetry"). They use real music (not canned -- synthesized instrumentals like Baby Einstein), it has pop up notes that tell you about the composer, artist, whatever and it is illustrated so that it entertains little ones. All in all Q liked these far better than Baby Einstein -- but we did watch those too. I, also enjoyed them since I had to watch them and I found myself learning something new.
12. Clorox Anywhere Spray: Great stuff -- does exactly what it is says. It is completely safe to use around the babies. I use it to clean everything from bibs and highchair trays to toys and books. It Kills the germs, the smell is not too abbrasive (rather light compared to Clorox Clean-up) and it does not cost an arm and a leg!
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
According to Q this morning, the singular of Trix is "a Trick", as in "Look Mommie a yellow trick!" and "Ooohh Mommie, I dropped a trick in my seat!"
However, when he wants more than one he says "I need mah trix". Today he was shaking his snack trap (full of trix) and was singing "shake it, shake it!"
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Friday, January 23, 2009
Current Score: Cats=1 Don Julio=0
Last year for Mother's Day I got a Roomba and I love it. I was always hesitant to get one because of the cat hair -- I just never thought it would do a good job. I was wrong -- it is great.
Satchel is a 3 year old, black, male American Short Hair and he is deaf. He also has a great big soft belly and he loves to break stuff -- often knocking breakable things from high places -- as only a deaf cat would. Satchel was named after Satchel Paige. He also loves vacuums -- unlike most cats. Satchel's favorite pastimes are breaking things, stealing your drinking straws out of your cup (straws are treats to Satch), sleeping, jumping out and grabbing your legs as you come around a corner (you have to say "you got me" and scratch his head when he does this to appease him), and getting in the tub with me --he sits on my lap and drinks the bath water -- he does it every night -- often waiting on the mat untilI signal by tapping the edge of the tub that he can jump in.
Taterbug is a huge, fat, white, male American Short hair who is not deaf but never makes a sound and sheds like nothing I have ever seen before. He loves to be close and nestle in your lap and nap on anything black that may be around -- like your good sweater or jacket. He also likes to sharpen his claws on all of the the good furniture that is why our good furniture is no longer good. Tater also fetches -- something I have never seen another cat do. Tater's favorite past times include escaping to the other side of the french doors (an "off limits" area to the cats), turning all of Quentin's finger puppets and small stuffed animals into his "critters" (things he carries around in his mouth and then dunks in the toilet), eating treats, shredding paper towels, eating, eating, eating some more, making "biscuits" by kneading his paws and claws into your leg and letting Quentin man handle him.
It was a great shock to the boys when we came home with this little pink thing that cried and pooped named Quentin... we had some nerve.
Then just to make their lives even more horrible I got the roomba, who after a long discussion about what name it should be given (including some suggestions of "R-2-Sweep-Pooh" and "Frank Skippleton") was saddled with "Don Julio". Don sits in our dining room next to the mini buffet where he stays plugged in and charging -- awaiting the time I let him loose in a room. The cats hate Don Julio. He scares them, he is unpredictable and he will run over them. They often sit on Don sometimes.
Yesterday Corby came home to find a situation that he has never faced before. He actually started retelling the story with "If we only had surveillance cameras in the house -- I would love to see how they managed this"... Now I have been greeted with some surprising situations involving the cats like the time they shredded a 3 pack of paper towels that were accidentally left out on the kitchen counter -- it looked like it had snowed in the kitchen. I could not see the floor. Then there was the time that they had gotten into my yarn and managed to wrap the center wall in my house about 100 times round with yarn... they just went in a big circle, dining room, picture hall, den, kitchen , dining room, picture hall, den, kitchen, etc. as if it were a giant maypole. It was amazing. Or the time they managed to get Corby's brand new $100.00 plus golf shoes OUT of the shoebox and sharpen their claws on the nice supple leather on the toe and heel -- destroying them. But this new feat was pretty amazing. Corby said he came home, one of the kitchen chairs was knocked over; Don Julio was not plugged in and he was not in his spot. In the center of the dining room was Don Julio's trash tray (the little part you pull out and dump) and in the kitchen all caught up in the kitchen mat was Don Julio. But the fun does not stop there. There was a rabbit fur puff off of a scarf I have they had managed to get and it was shoved under the door to the front room. In the center of the den was a massive hunk of black fluff --Corby said he thought it was stuffing from something (we still have not identified) and surrounding the fluff was a ton of Satch hair. We have no clue how they did unless they grew hands and fingers. They managed to unhook him, start him up (which is not that hard --a button on top that they usually sit on anyway), get his tray out and then just harass him (i am sure they attacked at every corner) until he caught himself up in the rug... poor Don Julio.
Those pesky kitties.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Then it kind of lost its glory when he realized it was not quite the same white fluffy stuff made of cotton and glitter that are in his books.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Where do I start... Lets see, when Cub and I first married we bought our first house (the house we live in now) in a very old neighborhood downtown that has many beautiful and historic homes but unfortunately our neighborhood went through a period in the 60's, 70's, 80's and early 90's where it was run down, not taken care of and most of the properties were turned into rentals... in essence it became a ghetto. A movement was started in the 90's to reclaim the neighborhood and almost all of the large historic homes have now been renovated, landscaped and have become quite the showplace. I live in the back of the neighborhood where most of the homes are brick or wood bungalows and are a little younger compared to our ancient counterparts, having been built only in the 40's. My street has its eyesores, some houses are still rentals, and they are not rented to upstanding or responsible folks who take care of their homes but would rather hang out in front of their houses (along with any other loser who happens to wander down the street) with their 40 oz.es and pitt bulls and leave discarded highchairs, old exercise bicycles, and collapsed baby swimming pools all over their yards while cramming 15 family members, at least 6 of which are all illigetimate children in a 1200 square foot house (but I digress, that is another post entirely). Despite the few I have mentioned, many of the homes on our street are cute little family owned homes with young families, like us and our immediate neighbors (the neighbros). These houses have been renovated and landscaped and are attractive.
ANYWAY, "technically", we live "out North Main" -- an area of town that instantly causes one to reel back in horror -- the wrong side of the tracks!!!! My neighbors and buddies who live in our neighborhood have gotten tickled lately because there is this ghetto blaster car that we see in the area that has "Savage Life" and then below that "North Main Style" across the back window. We did not know we had a style! Something we could grab on to -- and of course I have taken it and run with it. Also, to add credence to this whole thing, my coworker Milk Duds' (a name I shall give her for her secret blog identity) husband is the manager of several people who live out North Main (farther out than us) and when he questioned the employee about why he was doing something a particular way, said employee replied: "That's how I do it -- we North Main Style". SO THAT SEALED THE DEAL, I knew I had a winner, an established saying that I knew nothing about but think is just great... it says so much about our hood and became a running joke for a long time between Milk Duds and my neighbros. THEN I HAD A FLASH OF GENIUS! You see people with the little white destination stickers in their back windows that speak of lavish and posh places like IOP (Ilse of Palms), OBX (Outer Banks), PI (Pawley's Island) -- as a total poke in the eye -- why not NMS? And there you have it. My fabulous husband who basically is a glorified sticker maker -- made me just a few of the beauties you see above. Yes we all sport them proudly, our hood, NMS 4 EVA!
Sunday, January 18, 2009
While watching VH1 Classic tonight (which by the way is one of our favorite things to do so that we can make fun of bad hair, costumes, and frankly hysterical videos) we were trying to decide if the heavily made up and obviously "worked on" Brett Michaels is bald under his do' rag and cowboy hat? Corby looked at me and said "do you think Brett Michaels is bald as f^&# under his little do' rag?" I would think so.