Thursday, January 28, 2010

And now, I offer you the birthday pictures

I think I've delayed posting Mary Clare's birthday photos because, well, I'm just not happy with them. Don't get me wrong, my girl is a cutie patootie and there are some darling pictures. I just didn't get that one great shot that makes me want to blow it up to 16x20 and stare at it all day.

I blame this perfect birthday photo obsession on my friend Anne, who has this insanely adorable shot of her daughter Clare on her first birthday. Clare is sitting on a white blanket surrounded by vibrant green grass. She's wearing a pale pink handmade frock topped with a fluffy pink birthday hat from which her golden curls emerge. She is looking at the camera, her cheeks cherubic and expression so angelic it makes you want to die. Seriously, the picture is ridiculous, and I'm sure Anne casually snapped it not knowing that it would be a good picture, much less one that would make me obsess about it years before I even had my own daughter.

So, anyway, while I was all proud of myself for not being glued to the camera (I made my friends do that) and actually enjoying the moment and the people around us, I am now kicking myself for not taking more pictures. Ah, just another fun day on the parental guilt train.

What I did take -- or, I should say, what Cori and Lauren took -- can be viewed here. If you don't want to go through the whole set, at least check out the last two pictures. They're not of Mary Clare (gasp!) but they are priceless.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The cheeks have it

Oddly enough, our pediatrician wasn't so keen on seeing Mary Clare for her one-year appointment on or within a week of her birthday, so we took her today.

Dr. O'Neil gave her a good report, and said her weight of 20 lbs. and height of 30 inches puts her in the 50th and 90th percentiles, respectively. So yes, there's a reason her sleeves are a little shorter and her cheeks are a little fuller these days. In return for her good, albeit squirmy, behavior, Mary Clare received a finger prick and four shots. Poor girl. We used to get the silent scream with the shots. No more. As the nurses and patients in the waiting room will attest, there was nothing silent about today's screams. She perked up quickly, though, and a mere 20 minutes after the ordeal she was strapped into her high chair at school and tucking into a dish of chicken noodle soup. She tossed a dismissive wave my way as I headed to the door.

It would appear Buddy has taught Mary Clare how to hold a grudge.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

It's a two-story party over here

Chip: We need coasters upstairs.
Me: Why?
Chip: For the bedside table. You know, for when cocktail hour runs into the bedtime hour.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

She digs on swine

With tenderloins left from the birthday party and me on a tear to empty the big freezer before returning to the frozen food palace that is Sam's, I guess we've had a lot of pork on the menu of late. It's fine. I have a lot of good tenderloin and chop recipes, and everyone in the house likes it. Actually, "like" might be a little mild in Mary Clare's case. I don't know what it is, but there's nothing like a good pork dish to bring out the wild swine in Mary Clare.

Every time we have pork, Chi
p, Buddy and I all wait with baited breath as Mary Clare inhales her dinner. Chip and I stare at her and pray, "Please, let this be the one night we don't have to give her a post-dinner bath." Buddy just wants her to share the love. He's patient at first, and then he gets miffed and starts the harrumphing. As he tip taps his paws in an attempt to get her attention, I just know he's thinking, "That's it. Either I get some pork tossed my way or I'm not going to be so understanding the next time she jams her finger up my nostril." Alas, we are all left disappointed. Buddy is denied any meaty bits, and Mary Clare demonstrates her approval by rubbing her porky little hands all over her face and through her hair. As you can see, it's pretty awesome.

Ah, my porky little princess. How we love thee. And by we, I mean your parents. Buddy's not one to forgive and forget.

Friday, January 15, 2010

What a day for a mow, eh?

Go on, get out and enjoy those balmy 40-degree temps this weekend.

We won't be mowing the zoysia, but we will be taking down our outdoor Christmas decorations. Yep, we're that house on the block. You know, the ones with the window wreaths flapping in the breeze, the lit greenery draped around the front doors and the old school C-9s twinkling on the back garage. Because if the lights are going to be up, they might as well be on, right?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Rocking the suburbs

So, being back at work after more than two weeks off. It's tough. And this is my second week back.

Actually, the work part of work is fine, but I'm still struggling to adjust to the noise that is this new office set up. If you, too, are struggling to get back into the swing and tune out TMI colleagues, allow me to direct you to a few of the blokes who are seeing me through these dark times.
  • Rufus Wainwright: Ah, my flaming cabaret-style singing guy. You can belt it. I listened to his version of "Hallelujah" about five times yesterday at work. (Via ear buds, of course, since I'm not one of those people.) Chills.

  • Two Bens: Folds and Kweller, to be exact. I must say, I do miss the clever lyrics and whatnot when I'm listening in the car or at home. So there is an upside to having to tune out office noise, it would appear.

  • Phoenix: Discovered them after hearing an interview on NPR on the way to work one morning. Particularly loved that the interviewer thought he was being all coy by asking the lead singer, "So, you and Sofia Coppola?" and the guy was like, "Um, yeah. For awhile. We have one child and another on the way." (Nice try, Simon Scott. Maybe you'll get them next time.) In addition to Phoenix's worldly Parisian attitudes, I'm smitten by their music, which is nice and peppy with just a touch of disco so it's still tolerable. And it's in a Cadillac commercial, so they sold out to the man. And you know I only dig sellouts.

  • The Postal Service: The song "Such Great Heights" - the original, natch - is like pop rocks in my ears. Super fun.

  • Wilco: But when isn't it a good time to listen to Wilco?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A birthday nibble

The birthday - or birthdays, I should say - happened. And how. I'll post a few photos now to prove that I'm among the blogging and that doing Christmas plus two full-blown birthday parties didn't land me in the insane asylum.

More photos to come once the Christmas decs are down, I've readjusted to work life and Mary Clare stops walking around and getting into everything under the sun. (The dog's water bowl? Seriously, child, we'll give you a sippy cup. Just please stop dipping your hands in the bowl and sucking the water off of your fingers.) I'll also try to get Christmas photos in order as well. I feel I must warn you, though, I did a pretty poor job of getting pictures of Mary Clare in the beautiful Christmas and birthday dresses my mom made for her. So photo shoots will happen. After the aforementioned dog bowl diving stops, of course.