We were at MGH at o’dark thirty this morning with our 1.5 year old son Sam. He has had 10 ear infections in his life and partial hearing loss. As any mother would be, I was a little worked up over the notion of a young person being put under. But was calm knowing that it was a minor routine procedure. Everything went well and we were home by 10am with a relatively back to normal toddler.
The part I found very interesting was that we were with four other families during the pre-op and post-op. One of the father’s little girl was three and born at 32 weeks with Downs. This was their fourth time at MGH to get tubes. He was telling us that she doesn’t speak and ‘they’ say she can’t hear. But he said, ‘she hears me. she comes when I say her name from across the room.’ He went onto explain that she wears glasses but he thinks she sees everything. And if music plays she is a dancing fool! He said, “she’s normal to me.”
Most times when I hear a story like this I scold myself for too much self pity, but this time I didn’t do that. I was just happy to hear his perspective. He seemed to be a great dad working two jobs to support his normal family. I was grateful for it all.
On a side note, one of the father’s in our group wouldn’t engage with the aforementioned father because he was wearing a NY Yankees shirt. But later he broke down. It was a good bonding moment for all of us to poke fun and to find out why he wore such a shirt. He explained he was from Dominican and lived in NYC for a long time. If he hadn’t added that he liked the Lakers and Jets, all would have been forgiven. We milked the unimportant chatter while we waited anxiously to comfort our children.
As I get ready to donate all my gear, I am reflecting back on the gobs of money spent on the products. There are so many baby items that turn out to be a waste of money, so here are six things that are totally worth it in my humble opinion:
Socks On – I really liked these, they actually kept the socks on and saved me a lot of time and frustration.
Milk Maids– This is a styrofoam type bottle holder that allows your baby to feed themselves a bottle – it rests on their belly so you don’t have to hold the bottle.
Bumbos with trays – These are really great and safe. It’s the perfect place to put a baby when you don’t want to leave them laying down all the time.
Vitamix 5200 – You knew I was going to put this here. It’s great for baby purees. See this older post. https://amkline.wordpress.com/2011/01/08/making-baby-food-is/
Dr. Brown Bottles – High end bottles with lots of parts, but they are supposed to prevent acid reflux and digestive issues. My babies spit up constantly until they were 11 months old, but I don’t think they were in pain.
CityMini Double Stroller – I am not giving this away for years. I love this stroller and it is worth every penny that we spent. I wasn’t sure I would like it, so I got it on Craig’s List slightly used so I could save money for the really super duper stroller. But I am happy to say, this one has not made me year for another (and I’m the kind of person who likes four strollers so I have the perfect one for each occasion). It is skinny so fits through a regular door. It is lightweight so with a flick of wrists you can fold it up and pop in the back of the van. And it is large enough for our four and a half year old who wishes she were one.
All of these items make wonderful gifts for friends having babies.
It’s hard to walk the stairs…
..while texting, emailing, surfing or talking on the phone
…with a winter coat, mittens, scarf, starbucks, umbrella, big ole boots, a purse and a computer bag (I am still carrying the laptop and iPad, I have to figure out how to stop this)
…and what I discovered today…skinny jeans. The good news is that I fit into my version of skinny jeans, the bad news is that it adds a new challenge to walking up the nine flights of stairs.
…Oh yeah, that was another new revelation today – no office building labels the 13th floor – so going from 8 to 18 is not ten flights, but rather nine flights. This “ah ha” was the most disturbing of all.
I will continue to milk the brief alone time and power up the nine flights while only using my iPhone for music.
Here are some great apps for preschoolers and perhaps older children. For the most part I am cheap so I usually get the free app and if something is very good I upgrade. Most of the recommendations below are free or .99.
Angry Birds ( ok this one is for you, but you can get it under the guise of needing it for your child.)
Cut The Rope
Hidden Pix (think Highlights magazine from when you were a kid and email was 12 years in the future)
Uzu ( babies like this one, not that I encourage babies to use an iPad)
Yertle (dr suess book)
Toy Story ( part e-book and part coloring book )
When my husband came home from Costco with Vitamix 5200, it sat in the middle of our kitchen in the box for three days. He was having buyers remorse and was nervous about the money spent on a blender. He loves a good sales presentation and got sold. I was skeptical and not supportive, but I finally said just take it out and let’s see what it can do.
We used it to make ice cream (it spins so fast it creates extreme cold or heat depending on the item in the machine), soups and smoothies. We used it a lot during the summer but use trailed off as the novelty wore off.
The Vitamix and Annabel Karmel’s 100 Baby Purees has helped relieve some of the guilt attributed to working outside the home and not seeing my children for long periods of time.
The Vitamix is an amazing machine and makes it super easy to make the purees. Maddie and Sammy eat homemade food. I make most of it and our nanny does the rest. The babies eat everything from beef to lentils, from broccoli to tofu, from berries to sweet potatoes. While I’m at work, I know they are heating healthy food without preservatives and very little salt or sugar.
I never considered doing this for our first child. The work involved seemed overwhelming
But now that I am in this I am finding it quite fun coming up with a new concoction. I have only had to throw out one batch. Barley and berries don’t mix that well.
I am going to milk it as long as I can, mixing up purees is much easier than figuring out what finger foods won’t choke them.
Today when I ran to South Station to catch my train my thoughts collided with each other. I wasn’t done with work but time was telling me to focus on home and what had to get done. As I completed conference calls and answered emails on the train, a stream of thoughts were running below like the stock ticker on the bottom of the news – what birthday parties do we have to attend? What new foods should I feed the babies? Why are we having an open house again? Will anyone buy our house? Where should I get jeans and fitted for new bras? What size am I now? What am I going to have for dinner?
My husband called me while I was on the train and said that he had a work dinner. I was thrilled. I knew that I could get the children to sleep and then I could complete work so I would be free to enjoy the weekend. I dangled Grey’s Anatomy in front of me to keep the focus on getting the work done. Dan called to let me know that he and his work colleague were coming to the house while they waited for the table at the restaurant. They stopped my flow by talking to me and giving me great wine. Once they left I still had 80 emails, but at least I had a good feeling in my veins to keep me going. I didn’t get to Grey’s but I milked the wine until I got to the last unread email.
Now I can switch my personal life to be on top and the work stuff can take up residency on the ticker until Monday when we start again.