Oh. Hi.

Hey look! I still have a blog. Sorry about that. I’m back now.

This winter has been a bit of a mess. I don’t have to tell you about the weather, and I think we’d all be happier if I didn’t bring it up again. Zooey was sick straight from New Year’s Day until sometime in February, with everyone else taking turns being sick all around her. Actually, I may or may not have been sick last week. When I’m pregnant I can’t always tell if my random assortment of ailments is because I’m incubating a virus or a fetus. Could go either way. Also, my Braxton-Hicks contractions are hella bad this time around. It seems like every other night they’re pat week I have to do the “should-i-call-the-midwife” math in my head (I had six contractions in an hour-and-a-half…but it’s after 10…But they’re pretty regular…But I’m 34 weeks…but….)

I should probably drink more water.

I’ve still got a touch over 5 weeks to go, in theory, but my mommy-sense is telling me this kid might want out early. See: aforementioned crazy Braxton-Hicks, also her sister was 9 days early. So 3-4 weeks? Or maybe she’ll go long and make it 6 weeks, just to remind me who really runs the show.

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The Cheesecake

I often feel very good about my cooking skills. I feel one of the things that makes me a good cook is my ability to go beyond a recipe. I’m pretty good at whipping things up on the fly, adjusting recipes to suit my needs, and in general just improvising.
Anyway, it’s all well and good for me to brag about my mad kitchen skills. Until I make something great, and want to make it twice.
Then I suck, and have terrible kitchen skills because, where is the recipe? Oh, right IT DOESN’T EXIST! You, Bethany, with your tinkering with things and not having any time to write down what you did because you’re too creative, by which I mean, you’re terrible at following instructions and have just learned to hide it from everybody. And now you can never eat those cookies again. Or, in this specific instance, cheesecake.
Last year for Thanksgiving I made a cheesecake. It was good, and it had a shortbread crust and a delicious caramel sauce to go with it. But I don’t have a recipe for cheesecake in my recipe box. I DO have a recipe for cheesecake in the dessert cookbook that also has the delicious caramel sauce, and the page was bookmarked with a handwritten recipe for…um…something. Cupcakes, possibly? I have no system.Actually, there are two recipes for cheesecake. One on each page, but I’m pretty sure it’s not the first one. I think last year’s cheesecake might be at least related to the second recipe, but I’m also pretty sure I merged it with a recipe from Food Network’s website. Which I did not pin or bookmark or save in any way.So I guess what I’m saying is, maybe I should learn to follow a recipe.

So close…

I’m hoping we can get Zooey potty-trained (during the daytime, at least) before Newbie is here. She’s interested in potty-related things, and seems, at least sometimes, to be aware of when she has to go potty. Last night, she told me she had to go potty, and I took off her diaper so she could sit on the little potty we have downstairs.

Except she didn’t want to sit on it. She immediately wanted to move on to washing her hands. So I sat on the big potty to demonstrate how “big girls go pee-pee.” And she did go pee-pee.

On the floor, by the sink.

And then she wanted to wipe herself and wash her hands. So really, I should be proud, because she’s got almost the whole routine down. Except, you know, the important part.

Halloween (after the fact)

So, Halloween.

It’s pretty much my favorite holiday. I don’t know if you know that, but it is. You know why? Because it’s awesome. Christmas has a lot of expectations. I’ve got hundreds of dollars of presents to buy for dozens of people and WHAT IF I GIVE SUCKY PRESENTS EVERYONE WILL HATE ME!  And it goes on forever!!! It’s almost two months away and everyone is already trying to get me to celebrate it. Bah, humbug.

Thanksgiving is fine, and there’s stuffing, but it’s still a lot of running around trying to see everyone and not as much relaxing with my belt off as I’d really like. And my team never plays during the football game.

Halloween is really the good stuff. It’s a celebration of chocolate and pretending to be someone else all night. Also The Nightmare Before Christmas. No one expects me to buy anything more than a giant bag of fun size Snickers, and maybe a couple pumpkins. I also like making costumes and carving pumpkins. Wheeee! Low expectations/high reward. That is the holiday for me.

This year I was really excited to make a costume for Zooey. I’ve been planning to make her Boo from Monsters Inc. basically since I could put little pigtails in her baby hair. I made a costume that I’m pretty proud of:

boo costumeThough, you may notice, there’s not little Boo in the costume. She would not wear it. Or pigtails. But it’s cool. I had a backup:

owl_costume1

owl_costume2

4-hour owl! And she actually let me put it on (kind of, there was some freaking out when I attached the wings, but she got used to them). And, I carved a pumpkin to match:

owl_pumpkin

the new kid

Hey, guess what y’all?

big_sister1 Someone’s going to be a big sister! She’s as excited about it as a 16-month-old can be, inasmuch as we now spend more time talking about babies, and even though she doesn’t understand exactly what we’re trying to tell her, she likes to talk about babies, or at least say “Baby!” very excitedly. The new kid should be here at the end of April (I’m 15 weeks right now, if you were interested) and we should know next month if we get the boy or girl variety.

Everyone is very happy about it, including me, when I’m not barfing. Which can stop any time now, please.

Professionals & Princesses

I’ve been a little sick this past week, and when you’re sick, but your toddler is healthy, things can get kind of sideways.

I’ve been coping the best I can, playing games like “Let’s Sit and Read a Book” or “Bring Mommy _____! Now Go Get _____!” (fun fact: she will only comply with toys. she will not fetch a sandwich, or the box of tissues.) or the very popular “Here is a Sticker. Enjoy While Mommy Plays Candy Crush.”

We’ve also been watching more TV than is typically allowed; specifically Doc McStuffins. If you are not aware, Doc McStuffins is a six-year-old girl who fixes toys. They come to life and complain of some kind of toy ailment, she gives them a checkup, and fixes them and we all learn a fun, song-filled lesson about the importance of hand washing or to be careful around sharp objects or something.

Zooey loves Doc. She has a Doc doll, and a Doc bag and a Doc book with Doc stickers. when we go too the store, she points out the place in the toy aisle with Doc toys by yelling “Doc! DOC!!! DocDocDocDoc.” When the show comes on, she flips her little baby lid.

I like Doc too. She’s much less annoying than Dora because she doesn’t yell questions into the fourth wall and then stand there staring in awkward silence. She also doesn’t repeat everything she does four times.

I like her better than Princess Sophia, because she is not a princess. She is a doctor. Well, a pretend doctor, but her mom is a real doctor, and she’s got career aspirations.

Don’t get me wrong, Sophia is fine, but she is the gateway to Disney Princess worship, which is annoying to me. I like Mulan, she never gets included in the princess lineup. Know why? Because she’s good at fighting and riding, but hates makeup. That’s not princess-y.

It’s cool to like princesses and pink and sparkles. It’s cool to think dressing up is more fun than mud puddles. But then the shit hits the fan and you and the prince are stuck in the cave/castle/evil forest fighting the bad guy, and what’s not cool is crying with your back to the wall when this happens. That is my number one irritation with the princesses: the moment in the movie where the battle is raging, and the magic orb/sword/gun slips out of the hero’s (Prince’s) hand and falls to the floor eight feet from our leading lady and she just stares at it all horrified.

Even when I was a kid, that shit drove me up the wall. I remember being like eight and critiquing The Princess Bride scene in the Fire Swamp in pretty much this exact way. “She just stands there! Why doesn’t she help? God. She’s the worst.” Even in grown-up not princess/animated movies that happens all the time, and I cannot handle it. Grab the gun, shoot his face. Don’t just stand there.

And I could discuss this more intelligently by talking about agency or lack thereof in female roles, and gender stereotypes and societal norms and how they are internalized by our children and blah blah blah. But my overall point is this, girls: Liking pink sparkle stuff is awesome. Liking other stuff is awesome. The more stuff you like and feel passionate about, the more awesome you are. But just standing there is not awesome.*

 
*And I realize the irony of this message coming from someone who just admitted they tried to get their one-year-old to make them a sandwich out of sickness/laziness. Let’s gloss over that. I’m feeling better and made my own sandwich today.

the golden shoes

Earlier in the year my mom bought Zooey some adorable gold jelly sandals. I liked them because they were easier to get on and off than sneakers, and they just seemed nicer for summer. Sneakers suck in summer. Especially if you’re one and don’t like shoes to begin with.

The problem was, she figured out how to unsnap them and get them off. Or, at least one of them. We were shopping at Target a few weeks ago, and I looked down to see one shoe, and one bare foot. I retraced our path through the store, through housewares and makeup and the aisle with exercise stuff (but not the running armband that fits my droid, dammit) all the way back to the dollar spot. Nothing. Then I retraced my steps forward again. Nothing. Before I left, I even asked at the customer service counter, but they did not have the shoe.  I was kind of sad.

The next time I was at Target, a few days later, I asked again at the desk before I headed out. I figured maybe someone found it at night when they were cleaning up or something. Sure enough, the girl came back to the counter with a little sandal. Yay! I thanked her, and took the shoe, and as soon as I grabbed it, something seemed wrong. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I didn’t think it was the right shoe.

When I got home, I took a closer look. It was the right color, the right brand, the right size. I grabbed the other shoe to complete the set.
image

They even made a left and right pair, but they were NOT the same shoe.

Somewhere in my town, there is another little girl who lost her gold jelly sandal at Target some time in between when Zooey lost hers, and when I went back to ask about the shoe. When that little girl’s mom went to the counter to ask about the lost and found, they had a size 12-18 months Old Navy gold jelly sandal just waiting there to be picked up. And that little girl is probably running around in mismatched sandals, too. I mean, why waste a perfectly good pair of shoes just because they’re, you know, not actually a pair?