"But you're so precious to me, sweet as can be, baby of mine..."

November 26th, 2010

My dear, sweet Peter Joseph,

We can't believe this day is here- you are ONE YEAR OLD!

A few minutes old
 This year has been the most amazing time of our lives! Your Dada and I were so surprised when we learned that you were going to be arriving, but it was the sweetest surprise we have ever known and one that we needed more then anything!

I knew pretty early on in my pregnancy that you were going to be a boy- I just felt  it in my heart! The ultrasound wasn't a surprise to me, but oh, hearing the official declaration that we were having a son was so wonderful, so overwhelming, so joyous! I carried my ultrasound pictures with my everywhere (still do!) and would wonder what those teeny hands, feet, and face were going to look like!

The night you were born was a whirlwind- at 8pm Thanksgiving Eve, I felt fine. At 9pm, I sat down to eat dinner (chicken and rice) and watch Glee! And by 10:30pm, I was calling Dada to take me to the hospital! Just a few hours later, you were in my arms- two and a half weeks early, blonde, and perfect.

In a year, you have gone from the 6 pounds (5th percentile) you entered the world with to over twenty!  You are soooooo tall, 19 inches at birth (15th percentile) to  30.5 inches at your 1 year check (75th percentile). You were so tiny and fragile when you were born, and now you are so strong and solid! You skipped right over 12 month sizes and have moved on to 18 month! Thankfully, you have lots of friend who could take the cute 12 month sized clothing Mama had stockpiled for you!

One Month Old
I think the biggest change we have seen in the last few months is the development of your personality! You were so serious during your first few months, and then you saved your sweet smiles for Mama and Dada later. Now? You're just funny! You can sometimes start out shy with others, hiding your face in my neck when you first see a crowd, but once you warm up, you become a little star- clapping, waving, smiling, and laughing! You think it's hysterical to pretend to cough, giving a little "hackhackhack" and then laughing your head off! You also think it's funny to pick your nose when we tell you "No pick!"! Your squeals of delight when you are happy make me laugh, and your "happy growl" makes me downright hysterical! You are a ball of sweet, energetic sunshine and you make us so happy!

Two Months Old
PJ, you are very, very stubborn and I can't imagine where you get that from {ahem...}. I have seen you spend 5 minutes trying to work on something you are trying to do- usually, it's something you're not supposed to be doing, like getting to the camera when I've placed it out of your reach! It's usually not until your Dada and I are able to distract you with something else that we can get you to forget about whatever it is you want! Your determination amazes me, and I just hope that as you get older it not only stays with you, but that you use it for good and not evil!

You are soooo close to walking- you will take a step or two but then go right to crawling! I think you can do it, you're just not feeling brave enough yet! In the meantime, you can cruise, roll, crawl and wiggle like the wind! Put you down and you can be across the room (and into something!) in a flash! You figured out that if you push something like a toy, a box, a pillow, etc, up to the couch you can just climb right up! This morning at the coffee shop you climbed up a high chair!

PJ, you are lucky enough to be surrounded by an outstanding group of friend and family, all of whom love you very, very much! Your Nan and Pop, Bubbie and Zayda, aunts, uncles and cousins all adore you, and you seem to love them, too, lighting up whenever they are around! There are always friends to play with and fun things to do, and it makes us so happy to know your life is so full love love, friendship and happiness, even at such a young age! I hope more then anything that this follows you throughout your life! 

This year has been the most amazing, wonderful, tiring, crazy experience of my whole life! I can hardly remember what life was like before you were here! My heart is so full of you, where there used to be so many holes. I still (and always will) miss the people who are gone from my life, and will always be sad that they didn't get to be a part of yours. But from the moment I learned that you were on your way to me, I was able to remember that life is good, it's worth living, and that it's always possible to love with your whole heart.

You taught me all of those lessons, and you only have two teeth! ;-)

Sweet Baby Boy, we love you with all of our hearts! You are a gift- the best gift! Your Mama and Dada love you all the way to the moon and back! You ARE, without a doubt, the very best Boy-Boy in the whole world!


With love,
Mama and Dada

One Year Old behind the wheel!!


"I'll keep you my dirty little secret..."

These are my confessions...

  • I ate all of PJ's Goldfish crackers.
  • I don't like wine, but we registered for pretty wine glasses when we got married, so I drink Diet Coke out of them.
  • It annoys Pete to no end when I drink Diet coke out of the wine glasses.
  • I really, really need to shave my legs.
  • I open a new box of cereal before the last one is empty.
  • I love to write poetry, but while I want to write like (my hero) Bernie Taupin, I usually end up with something that reads as if Taylor Swift went on a crack binge.
  • My brother-in-law Greg passed away a little over two years ago, but I still have his cell phone number saved into my phone. Every now and then I go to erase it, but end up not able to do it.
  • There's banana on the floor from PJ's breakfast that I haven't swept up yet. It's 2:49pm.
  • This blog post still makes me laugh my head off.
  • I'm getting baby fever in the worst way lately- I think it's because PJ is about to be one and the year just went by so damned fast!,/i>
  • I really, really want my sister Marla to try for a baby, but I don't know if I'd be okay with her risking her health to do it. Since she doesn't have a baby yet, I still like her better!
  • There was a beautiful piece on The Today Show about the amazing St. Jude's Hospital, and I found myself in tears, because of the bravery of the children and unfairness of their illness, but mostly out of relief and gratitude that so far, that hasn't happened to my son.
  • Being mature is a real struggle for me sometimes. Left to my own devices it can be hard, but taking the high road when I'm provoked...gah! There are times I feel the immaturity coursing through my body!
  • When PJ turns one on Friday, it will also mean that I have been breastfeeding for a whole year and I am insanely proud of that fact! Yay for my boobies!
  • My husband and I do not get enough time together. It's easy sometimes to put everything first, but it's something that we need to work on.
  • I am full of randomness today and should stop blogging before it gets out of hand.

"Those were the best days of my life..."

I decided to take a break from eating my son's Goldfish crackers {shame} and window shopping/potentially Christmas shopping on Etsy to blog about eating crackers and window shopping.

You're welcome.

Today was a pretty easy day spent with my little family! I let Pete sleep in since he starts nights this week (boo) and will have to start getting used to being nocternal. That meant a quiet morning with PJ in which we ate breakfast together, sang along with the CD of Sesame Street music his Aunt Marla got him (it says his name!!), and practiced "walking" before his morning nap!

Thankfully, I was also able to be in Get Shit Done mode, cleaning the kitchen, cleaning out our desk, doing laundry and straightening up PJ's room! There's still a TON  left to do, but hear me now: It WILL be done by Thanksgiving so we can gear up for the holidays! That means having a house that's clean and orgainzed so we can set up our tree/Hanakkah decorations and have enough room for PJ's bithday/Hanakkah/Christmas gifts! Pete and I have these excited talks about what toys will be banished for new ones! Hey, Exersaucer? Pffft. You're outta here!
Or, well, moving to the basement to wait for the next little Latini to play with you, anyway! :-P

I can hardly believe the year is almost over- just over a month until New Year's Eve! Last year, I fell asleep on the couch right before the ball dropped! PJ was still brand-new and only weighed seven pounds, I was a sleep-deprived, nervous, happy new mama who was just getting her legs under her, and our time together was just starting out! This year, that teeny newborn has morphed into a tall, blonde, smiling, over twenty pound baby boy and the Mama is a little less sleep deprived, still completely happy,  and a little more confidant in her mothering skills! This has been the sweetest time of my entire life and it went by in the blink of an eye!

Just five more days until this little dude is one!

"Run and tell the angels that everything's alright..."

Ah, Saturday night!

Pete and I tag-teamed some time out tonight, my taking the first shift for a quick night out with my friend Michelle, and Pete taking the second shift to catch a comedy show with our friend Adam! Even though we could surely use some Breezy-Pete time, we are both happy to have had some free time to ourselves tonight! I know I certainly enjoyed the chance to share appetizers and conversation without having to pluck children from under the table between sentences!

Today was actually a very sweet day and a great ending to what turned out to be a busy week! It started with our shopping excursion on Sunday and ended today with an almost-soccer game (my niece Riley was supposed to have a game but it was cancelled), lunch out with my sister-in-law, nieces, and our Aunt Susan, and then our split-shift nights out tonight!
On Thursday we managed to squeeze in some time for a family portrait to put on our holiday cards! Sadly, it doesn't look like PJ is going to support us in our old age by being a male model- he had no patience for the process at all, and made it clear he would rather slither to the floor/crawl away/nom on his shoes/stubbornly refuse to smile/make a stinky face/pull on his Daddy's ear then smile for the camera! We did manage to get some good shots, so keep you eyes open for our Happy Christmas/Hannakah cards!

These are the memories, folks.

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner! Last year, I had a brand-new baby in my arms on Thanksgiving morning and had tortelini for dinner that night! And all of this means that next week, my sweet baby boy, the one who looked like this:

PJ was actually about a week old here.

...is going to be one year old!


"I need a sign to let me know you're here..."

This past Sunday my sister Marla, PJ, and I spent the day together- a Mama-Sister-Aunt-Son-Nephew Day!

We had big plans to go to Neshaminy Mall so I could shop at the Crazy 8 store there, and then we were going to visit my Mom-Mom's grave, since the cemetery she is buried in is right next door to the mall. We hadn't been there since her unveiling this past spring, and since we had what might have been the last beautiful weekend before it gets cold, the timing seemed perfect.

I shopped my brains out at Crazy 8 (Love. That. Store!) and got PJ a sweater I'd been lusting after for him, plus a few other items! We had lunch together, shopped a bit more, and PJ even got to take a mini-carousel ride! He was less then enthused- the ride was before lunch and (not unlike his Mama) he gets crabby when he's hungry! Aunt Marla gifted PJ with an early birthday present, a CD of songs sung by Elmo and other Sesame Street characters that's personalized with his name, so PJ hears Elmo singing right to him! We played it for my little blonde Sesame Street fan the next day and every time he heard his name, he would look up with an excited look on his face and clap his hands!

After the mall, we made the quick trip across the street to King David Memorial Park, where not only Mom-Mom is buried, but also her son, my Uncle Gary, Mom-Mom's twin brother Harry and his wife Bea, and their son Paul, who died when he was only in his 30's (I was very young when he passed away). The park is beautifully kept and it was a gorgeous, late-afternoon day when we got there. We stopped at my Uncle Gary's stone- PJ's Hebrew name is the same as his, Gadaliah. We sat down by Mom-Mom's stone and I let PJ reach down to feel the cool, raised letters. He squirmed from my lap, sat down on Mom-Mom's stone, and started talking non-stop in his baby-babble/growl. He looked earnest, but happy, and truly, honestly seemed like he was having a conversation. I've never seen anything like it.

We stayed for a bit, watching PJ "chat" with Mom-Mom, talking about how much she would have loved his blonde hair (and how much she would have hated my dark hair!). We left a tube of lipstick by her stone in her signature color of pink and got into the car to head home.

I will always be convinced that PJ and Mom-mom are connected- the timing of PJ's entrance into this world and Mom-Mom's exit was meant to be, even if it does hurt me that I can't see them together. I know they know each other though, and since it's all I have, it means everything.

"But then I just smile, I go ahead and smile..."

Today made me smile!

It started off with some mama chat with dear friends, drinking coffee, watching the littles play, and enjoying each other's company!

While I was there, I found out that my cousinIL Jen's husband is home on leave from Afghanistan! I had just been chatting about what an amazing job she does with her husband gone so much of the time when Pete called with the exciting news!

When I got home, PJ napped and I hopped on Facebook. I love Facebook! I admit it! It's a drug, and I'm addicted! And today, I found out that another cousinIL, the amazing, outrageous Heather, is having a little boy!

We went out to dinner, just our little family, and ran into some friends just finishing theirs! PJ started clapping furiously when he saw his friend Ezra! Dinner was yummy, PJ ate like a horse and behaved like an angel, and a number of people stopped to admire our sweet boy!

With the babe tucked into bed and Pete relaxing in front of TV, I hopped back onto Facebook to discover that a friend is pregnant after a long journey to get there! My heart is so full of happiness for her and her husband!

Now, I've packed Pete's lunch and tucked a note in with it. PJ's sleeping, the cat's been fed. It's chilly, quiet, and smacks of bedtime!

So, off to bed I go!

Good night!

"I've simply gotta march my heart's a drummer!"


...am feeling so content after a full day of friends and family in my little apartment! It feels so cozy to have people you love in the place that you live!

...managed to get a lot done today, thanks to the amazing mothers-helper-ly assistance of my niece Gabby! She's the oldest of PJ's 13 cousins and did an awesome job today!

...really, really, really need to get PJ's birthday invites done!

...can't wait to sleep on my clean, crisp, Dreft-y sheets tonight! Ahhhh....

...am so happy that Pete has the day off tomorrow so we can have some family time!

...was looking at pictures of a very tiny Ezra and PJ and it seriously made my heart ache and sing at the same time! How did our boys get so big so fast?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

...can't figure out how to get PJ's hair to stay up in spikes or a mohawk. Someone suggested hair wax and I think that might be the ticket. Plus, it doesn't have alcohol!

...is super-excited that Marla got a Cricut and can't wait to have a frenzy of sisterly crafting!

...is thinking of my cousin Matt and his sweet wife Colleen, who very soon will have a beautiful little girl to make them three!

...is having one of those days when my heart feels full and life seems pretty good.

...hopes you're feeling the same!

Good night!

"Three, oh it's a magic number..."

I totally stole this from my sweet friend Michelle (with a few modifications!).
 Get the handcuffs- I'm a blog thief!

3 Favorite TV Shows
1. Glee!
2. Parenthood
3. 30 Rock

(truthfully, I watch alot of television, but this is my general top 3!)

3 Favorite Places To Shop For Clothes
1. Old Navy
2. Express
3. Target

3 Favorite Places To Shop For Clothes For PJ
1. Crazy 8
2. The Children's Place
3. Target

3 Least Favorite Shows
1. Aqua Team Hunger Force (what the hell is that about????)
2. anything on Fox News (sorry, Pete!)
3. afternoon Judge shows (Judy, Joe Brown, etc. Take your pick)

3 Favorite Movies Of All Time
1. Slap Shot
2. A League of Their Own
3. The Muppets Take Manhattan

3 Favorite Books Of All Time
1. Anne of Green Gables
2. The Stand
3. The Ramona Quimby series

3 Favorite Websites
1. Perez Hilton
2. Facebook
3. Cakewrecks

3 Favorite Thing About My Husband
1. How he's ridiculously nice, friendly, and laid back
2. His dedication to his family/friends/fire department/anything he cares about
3. His cute, teeny behind

3 Favorite Holidays
1. Fourth of July (it's a holiday and our anniversary!)
2. New Years Eve
3. Season Premiere month!

3 Favorite Chores
1. Laundering, folding, and putting away PJ's clothes
2. Um.........
3. Yeah. That's all I got. (seriously, Michelle??? Favorite chores?? <3)

3 Least Favorite Chores
1. Pretty...
2. ...much...
3. ...all of them.

3 Favorite Things to Nom
1. Mexican food!
2. caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaake
3. chips and onion dip

3 Disgusting things my dear Grandmother used to eat frequently:
1. liver and onions (ewwww, must be a grandma thing)
2. gefelte fish (blerrrghhhhhh)
3. the leftover carcass of the Thanksgiving turkey after it had been carved to death!

3 Favorite Childhood Activities
1. reading
2. singing
3. playing wiffle ball with my neighbors

3 Favorite Current Activities
1. reading
2. watching TV
3. spending time with my son and hubby

3 Things I Am Thankful For
1. The health, happiness, and well-being of my sweet son
2. My amazing husband, sister, parents, in-laws, friends and family
3. That despite technology's best efforts, REAL books are still available!

"Sunshine, go away today..."

Today was a rainy day, but for us, it was one of those days when you don't even mind!

Pete was off again today, so we got to spend the morning together as a family and snuggle while we watched Sesame Street (PJ's favorite!)! I especially love when PJ and Pete can get some Daddy/Baby Boy time together- PJ worships him and it is the sweetest thing you ever saw! When Pete has 12-hour shifts two days in a row he doesn't see PJ for two day straight, since he leaves for work before he's awake and gets home after he's in bed, so I try to let them have as much one-on-one time as possible when Pete is home!

I did interrupt family time to meet up with some friends at the Pop Shop, where they were holding a "Super Hero Party" to celebrate school's being off today! It was a little hectic and our server was struggling a bit, but the kids all loved it! PJ and I were joined by my friend Randi and her three (Natalie, Gabrielle, and Adam) and my friend Tammy and her two (Kaiya and Malie). Even though Adam and PJ were sorely outnumbered by girls, everyone had a great time!

The rest of the day was mellow- PJ took a great nap while I made meatballs to freeze and Pete ran errands. Soon enough, it was time to tuck our sweet Boy into bed and for me to make some rainbow pancakes....which turned out more wheat-y then rainbow-y since I used whole wheat pancake batter! But, they are healthy which was the main idea! ;-)

So, it was a day that would hardly set my blog on fire with descriptions of excitement, but it was a nice, nice day, despite (or even because of!) the rain!


"Just what God needs, one more victim..."

So, I've put the bat down and have decided to stop beating myself up over yesterdays debacle when I was locked out of the apartment. Although it doesn't make me feel better about making such a stupid mistake, I know I am part of a very large club of mama's who have made similar ones. All you can do is pick yourself up, try to remind yourself that you are, indeed, capable of raising your child, kiss your baby and move on!

Besides, my sister reassured me that even though I managed to lock myself out of my apartment with my sleeping baby inside that I'm still a better mama then Britney Spears during her lower points.

Um. Thanks?

After sleeping off the effects of yesterday (having brought PJ to sleep with me around 4am when he woke up and seemed like he was gearing up for another two-hour awake-fest) we all were together as a family this morning since Pete is off until Friday! We took PJ for his flu shot (he took it like a champ, he's such an awesome baby!) and spent the rest of the day at home relaxing, which was wonderful! PJ took a great afternoon nap and I got the chance to catch up on some housework! After dinner, Pete took the evening shift with PJ so I could spend some time making fruit and veggie purees so I can make these cool-looking pancakes for PJ! I have been looking for ways to get things like spinach and other veggies into him. He totally refuses pureed foods but can't really chew spinach leaves with his gums, so I am hoping this trick will work nicely!

And just for the record, while pureed beets are superduperpretty, they smell like ass.

After a bedtime story from both Mama and Dada, and a false start in which he threw his paci's out of the bed and started jumping up and down, PJ is tucked into bed and sound asleep. Pete and I are continuing the relative peace of the day and have been relaxing and soon, it will be off to bed ourselves.

Good night!

"Time and time again I can't please myself..."


This day has been horrible. Seriously. It's been nothing but one giant parenting fail after another for me, and I am just thankful that my sweet son is safely tucked into his little bed!

It came on the tail of another tough night with PJ. He has been sleeping terribly at night- up and down, tossing and turning, and often up for hours at a time. It's not out of character for him to get up a few times a night, but he is often super-easy to get back down. Just a quick dose of boobie and he's out like a light again. This has been a whole new ballgame, and it's Wearing. Mama. Out. His two bottom teeth have finally made an appearance (and they are suuuuuuuuuuper cute!) so it could be teething. Or Ebola. God knows.

Breakfast, at least, was a win! PJ tried a waffle and found it to be delicious! So there was that. After that, though, it was all downhill. PJ was fussy and grumpy for most of the day, and wouldn't take a morning nap. We found out the place we wanted to hold his 1st birthday party is booked, so we need to find another option, and fast! We can also change the date, but that could make things difficult for everyone to be there to celebrate. Harumph.

Still, that's nothing compared to my Epic Parenting Fail today, in which I locked myself out of our apartment while PJ was napping inside. I am mortified to even write that it happened, but it did. I wanted to throw a load of laundry in, and our washer and dryer is in the basement. I always lock ALL the doors when I do that, and only do so, of course, when PJ is safely asleep in his crib or buckled into his swing. I've been thinking lately about how I will do laundry when PJ stops napping in his swing and learns to climb out of his crib!

Anyway, I tried to get in through a window and woke PJ up in the process, and then my baby was crying for me and I couldn't get to him. I think it's about as horrible as I have ever felt in my lifetime (maybe only the pain he was in after his surgery was worse, since this time, he was just mad/scared, not hurting or in any danger at all). Pete was at work and not reachable, and none of my neighbors were home for me to borrow a key. So, I called the fine folks at the Collingswood Police Department, who quickly helped get the Hysterical Parental Failure back into her apartment.

PJ seemed to forgive me pretty quickly, and then went back to being alternately snuggly and grumpy as he's been the past few days. At least his dinner was good- chicken and veggies, but no fruit, since I need to shop (another fail. Boo.). We had some nice, after-dinner snuggly time, a warm bath, and our usual bedtime stories! He was asleep in my arms, and started laughing in his sleep, which pretty much mended my broken, mortified heart!

This parenting business. It's hard! All you want in the world is to do right by your child, and it's difficult to face yourself when you feel like you don't measure up. Still, in the end, even this terrible day ended up okay, with my little family all safe and sound inside, and tomorrow is a new day.