Archives For Pets

For years we’ve been using this very efficient but not-so-pretty method of pet food storage: two plastic drawers stacked atop one another. This system was super functional but really not much to look at, and since I’ve been working on prettifying my laundry room that just wouldn’t do.

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I considered keeping the plastic drawers and just moving them out of sight, but that would have made them pretty inconvenient to use. So I searched high and low for an attractive and functional storage solution that wasn’t stupid expensive. After a few weeks I found these two gallon glass jars at Target for only $13 each!

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The first Target I went to only had one in stock, so I scooped it up and then went online to order another. Shipping made it pretty expensive, though, so I ended up ordering one from Bed Bath & Beyond instead. Well, turns out the reason it was cheaper there is that I accidentally ordered a one gallon jar. Oops. Well luckily for me by then the other Target in town had some in stock so I went and picked one up. And would you believe that when I was taking it out of the packaging at home I dropped and broke the glass lid? I was so annoyed. But yesterday I went back to Target and got another and I’m so so happy to finally have my two jars living peacefully beside one another.

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I just put some extra measuring cups I had lying around in there as scoops. Meanwhile, I’ve been collecting various jars and other crap from around the house in anticipation of eventually getting shelves above the wood counter. See the giant glass jar whose lid I broke sitting in front of the window? I’m thinking of repurposing it as a terrarium.

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What I’m really wanting now is to replace those broken miniblinds with bamboo shades, but I’m having a hard time finding two that match in the right sizes without spending a ton of money. I thought Lowes would cut some to size for me but it turns out that’s only the Levelor brand? So the search continues.

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Wow. Time flies, huh? We’re officially on a downward slide to Jack’s first birthday and things are looking up. It’s funny with babies. The first two weeks he was here I thought he was the easiest baby ever. “I’ve got this,” I thought. “Parenting is easy,” I thought. Then at two weeks it was like somebody flipped a switch and he suddenly had a lot of needs. Like to be held almost constantly. He fought naps and cried anytime I put him down, even just to brush my teeth or put on some real clothes. But I counted my blessings because he continued to sleep pretty well at night. Then from two months to four months something changed and he was pretty easy again. I congratulated myself on getting through the fussy weeks so gracefully. Then, OMG, he turned four months old and the next two months nearly killed me. The kid would not nap unless he was being held the entire time–it’s not much of a break for mom if she doesn’t actually get a break! And even then I was lucky to get thirty minutes out of him before he woke up still cranky. To make matters worse, nighttime was deteriorating as well. He went from sleeping a 6-9 hour stretch followed by another couple hours until morning to waking every 2-3 hours all night long. I was sleep deprived and dangerous to be around.

So when he turned six months old a couple of things happened. He started solids, we moved him out of our room, and we started putting him down awake and waiting a few minutes before going in if he cried. Life changer. Bedtime is a breeze and he’s back to waking to nurse only once or twice a night, which I’m fine with. Naps continued to be a problem for a few weeks and I don’t even try to put him down awake or wait before coming in at naptime because it’s a complete disaster, but over the past week or so naps seem to be falling into place on their own and at this very moment I sit typing away on my laptop while he snoozes happily in the next room. You do not know how insanely luxurious this feels unless you have had a baby who insisted on napping in your arms.

Another thing that happened this month is that Jack got sick for the very first time. He had a lot of congestion and both ears were infected. A round of antibiotics had him good as new in no time, and now that he’s well again he is actually going to have a minor procedure next week to have his frenulums clipped. His tongue and lip are both really restricted, and since the lip in particular can cause some pretty significant speech and orthodontic problems when he’s older (as well as pain and discomfort he’s unable to tell us about) we’re having them revised by an ENT. It should be a quick and relatively painless event, so fingers crossed!

The funniest thing to happen recently is that Jack has become much more aware of our pets. Juliet likes to hang out under his high chair while he’s eating (for obvious reasons. She’s not the sharpest tool in the shed but she knows he’s a goldmine for dropped food) and he loves to lean over the side and look at her. And when he’s on the floor if she’s within grabbing distance he tries to reach out and pet her, but usually it’s more like him poking her in the eye/pulling her ear/grabbing and twisting her fur. Fortunately she’s a good sport about it. And when Sheila or Pistachio walks past or jumps onto a piece of furniture he watches and laughs. It’s hilarious.

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Even when he’s fussy and demanding, I can’t help but love the little guy. He’s just so sweet and funny and cute. Consider us smitten.

It’s a good thing he’s been napping like such a champ lately because I am going to be cleaning my house like a crazy lady today getting ready for my sister’s bridal shower tomorrow! This is the first time we’ve had more than a handful of people over since Jack was born and I’m feeling a little overwhelmed. I guess the good thing is that I can always blame a messy house on being busy with the baby, haha, even though he’s not mobile yet so it’s not like I can try to pretend like he’s directly responsible. He mostly just lays there and demands my attention.

What a fabulous, fabulous day yesterday was! Jack had another ultrasound and his hips were perfect, so he no longer has to wear the harness!

I’m freeeeeeeeee!

He told me the thing he is most excited about is wearing pants. A whole new world of fashion possibilities just opened up after six weeks straight in nothing but onesies.

Juliet was eager to offer congratulatory kisses.

And Pistachio coincidentally chose this day to push her fear aside and come in for a sniff.

We are so, so excited to be done with that dang pavlik harness. We really did get used to it, but I’m glad it’s over. It’s so much nicer to cuddle a baby who’s not strapped into velcro. He was actually physically incapable of flopping over with it on, haha. He was such a rigid little man. And it was all scratchy on the outside. And those little baby legs! And feet! And toes! They were always covered up before, but no more! I can squeeze them to my heart’s content. Now I just got a little worried to realize I’ll be in charge of making sure his feet stay warm. Do babies his age need socks all the time, even in summer?

As for the harness, there’s an orphanage in China that’s in need of gently used pavlik harnesses, so it’ll be going in the mail as soon as I can get it washed. I asked my doctor’s office if they accepted donations for local families who couldn’t afford it, but they said they couldn’t take used ones. And as for why anyone would need something like this secondhand, would you believe that it costs nearly $800??? Fortunately our insurance covered most of it, but geez. That’s an awful lot of dough for some straps and velcro. It worked so well for Jack and literally changed the course of his life so I would love for another child to benefit from it as well.

Thanks again to all of you who were so supportive of us during this time. It really did make the whole thing easier to bear. And if you’re just reading this post and wondering what the heck this whole harness thing is all about, you can read my first post about it here, and read about when we found out he wouldn’t need surgery at the bottom of this post.

Jack was one month old yesterday! My friend Cassie asked me last week if I could believe he was almost a month old already, and to my own surprise the answer was an emphatic YES. It feels like it was forever ago that Nick and I were heading to the hospital to have him. Our lives have completely changed since then and I can’t believe that it’s only been a few weeks. It feels like he’s always been here! Nick says it feels like it’s flown by for him, though. Maybe the difference is that I’m home with Jack all day while Nick goes to work.

I always love it when folks take pictures of their little ones on some sort of regular basis during their early years to document their growth (like the Petersiks did with Clara and Nicole did with her two little ones). I decided I wanted to take pictures of Jack monthly but I didn’t really plan out any other specifics ahead of time, like where I would take the pictures or what he would wear. So when the 29th rolled around I decided to just photograph him in what he was already wearing. The harness makes it such a pain to change his clothes that I need a really good reason to do so. Like poop. And I mean more than just a little bit. It has to be kind of a lot of poop for me to put him through the scream-fest that is getting him out of the harness and clothes and back in again. I probably just lost half of my readers right there with all that poop talk. Anyway, so I didn’t know where to put him either so I took some on the rug in his room and some in the wing chair in the living room. Looking back, I kind of wish I’d taken some in his crib and on his green and white blanket, too, but oh well.

Want to see some outtakes? This is what he looked like before I turned on the white noise app on my phone.

That white noise is like wine for babies. It has such a delightfully relaxing effect! Here’s one of Juliet on security detail. This is right before she chased away Pistachio. She takes her duties very seriously.

And now, the first postpartum picture of me to grace the social media landscape (except for one picture my mom posted of me in a hospital gown and still droopy-eyed from the epidural that I choose to ignore).

As of my two week postpartum visit to my doctor I was down twenty pounds. That leaves seven left to go to reach my pre-pregnancy weight, but even if I get there things are still far from how they used to be. I’m not sure that the skin on my abdomen will ever be normal again. After all, this is how I looked a mere seven weeks ago. I dare say I was even bigger by the time Jack actually arrived. I feel soooo much better now that he’s on the outside.

I haven’t bounced back into blogging quite as quickly as I’d hoped, but I’m okay with it. We’re still trying to settle into some sort of routine around here and for now if I can just keep everybody clean, fed, and happy then I figure I’m doing pretty good. But I will be back! And I promise I’ll eventually be writing about something besides babies again someday.