Thursday, October 28, 2010

"I'm a Big Brother" Review - From Little One Books

As my birth approaches (well, let's not get too hasty I have a few more months to go being "preg-neat-o") I've looked around for books to read to Ari about becoming a big brother. I took a book out from the library that was all about introducing the idea of pregnancy to toddlers, i.e. a"what's in mommy's belly" sort of thing, but he was totally uninterested.

That's why when Little One Books allowed me the opportunity to review a couple of their products, one of the key items on the list for me was a book about Ari's impending big brother role. I wanted the book in question to be age appropriate, so I searched the 2 year old section on their site.

In the process of my search I found this book:

I decided to read it to him first thing in the morning. I figured he would be too out of it to protest. I was right. He agreed to listen to the book, and actually became excited about it.

The author of this book is quite clever, because she mixes in pictures of things that 2 year old books care for, like trucks for example.

Ari was also happy to point out many random facts about the book, including (not not limited to) the fact that the baby was wearing a seat belt.

I know he enjoyed the book, because after it was over he said "again!" and made me read it at least two more times. I hope the book will sink in and get him acclimated to his role as "big brother" which is fast approaching.

By the way, I am currently running a $25 gift certificate giveaway to Little One Books.

For more information on the Little One Books giveaway click here.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Little One Books $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway!

I've mentioned time and time again how Ari (my energetic 2 1/2 year old) is a terrible sleeper. Well, I finally decided to take matters into my own hands, with the help of Little One Books. Little One Books is a company based in Seattle founded by two grandparents who sought to provide parents, family members and caregivers access to quality children's books, music and videos.

If you go to, for example, and search for a lullaby CD the results you find are overwhelming. Barney Cohen and Joan McCoy have done the research and have provided us parents with a easily search-able website containing products that they personally recommend for children.

Little One Books was generous enough to allow me the opportunity to review a couple of their products. The first thing that came to mind was a lullaby CD for Ari to combat his bad sleeping habits. I chose this particular CD, which has a combination of traditional and original lullabies.

Now, I have to admit, I was skeptical for several reasons.
1. Ari has never much been into music before bed.
2. Often children's music can be irritating
3. Would this put the perpetual non-sleeper to bed?

My mom and I introduced the CD to Ari as a "special surprise." He immediately got excited.

I played the CD on my computer, so as it was playing he got to watch the Windows Media Player color animation, which he also thoroughly enjoyed. For those of you that don't know what I'm talking about, it looks like this:

The colors move as the music plays. How fun is that? Anyway, after each song ended Ari would ask:

"What happened?"

And I would explain to him that a new song would be coming on in a few seconds. Eventually, he began to get sleepy.

And so did I, as a matter of fact. The lullabies on this CD are really soothing and surprisingly not annoying! One of my favorite tracks is an original lullaby written by Mary Lee Sunseri and Nancy Stewart called "Auntie's Lullaby." The singer addresses her nephew and lulls him to sleep by explaining her role in his life. They also do a really nice version of the traditional song Kum Ba Ya.

Ari and I continued to listen and we both fell fast asleep. In fact, Wil had to come in and turn the lights out for us early in the morning.

Because of my sleep success, I am feeling generous. Little One Books and I are offering
a $25 gift certificate giveaway!

To enter do the following:

1. Leave a comment here about a product you are interested in trying from Little One Books. Here's a link to their site.
2. Like Little One Books on Facebook here.
3. Like Old School/New School Mom on Facebook here
4. Follow them on Twitter here.
5. Finally, sign up for their newsletter! The sign up is on the upper right hand corner of their site.

The winner will receive a $25 gift certificate to Little One Books

In case you're wondering, this giveaway is open to readers in the United States and Canada! Yay Canadians! To quote Audra, Online Community Manager at Little One Books, "We love Canadians!"

The winner will be selected randomly on Wednesday 11/10/10! Good luck!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Camera Phone Pictures From Coney Island

Today Ari and I met up with our new friends Liz and her son Shaylem. We took a trip to The Coney Island Aquarium. When we got to the aquarium, I realized that alas, I'd forgotten my camera. I really wanted to take pictures of Ari and "the fishes," as he calls them, so I used the camera on my phone and hoped for the best. Here's were the results:

Monday, October 25, 2010

Peeing on The Bathroom Floor: Slightly NSFW

I'm now six months pregnant. A couple of days ago, a humiliating thing happened to me. I was getting ready to take a shower, and I had the sudden urge to pee. Unfortunately, I couldn't make it to the toilet and I peed all over the bathroom rug. It's ironic that I have a 2 year old and I'm the one peeing on the rug.

Though I was thoroughly humiliated, I decided to cut myself some slack, and chalk it up to a one time fluke pregnancy induced occurrence.

Today I was, once again, getting ready to get into the shower and I felt the overwhelming urge to pee and all at once it was all over the floor.

I've determined a couple of things based on these concurrent events:

1. The baby is most likely sitting directly on my bladder and laughing at me.
2. Ari and I should be toilet trained at the same time.
3. I've just had a preview to 50 years from now when this may be a daily occurrence.

I wonder if I'll ever have my bladder control back. Should I stock up on adult diapers now?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

"You Put Your Pants On By Yourself!"

As a child, I was amazed when my parents did things that I could not do. One of my favorite childhood quotes was when I turned to my dad and exclaimed:

"You put your pants on by yourself!"

Today, Ari followed in the footsteps of Jeff Fader, my dad, and put his pants on "by himself."

2010-10-20 20.08.24

Monday, October 18, 2010

"I Wanna Walk Myself!"

This morning as we were leaving the playground I attempted to put Ari back in the stroller and he said:
"I wanna walk myself!"

I was shocked, because he loves to sit on his throne...I mean sit in his stroller. But I was thrilled that he actually wanted to walk!

The only trouble was, that he was distracted by everything, so it took an extremely long time to get home.

The only way I was able to get him to keep going was to tell him that there were more leaves in the backyard at home.

For those of you with children, when did they start to walk functionally?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

My 31st Birthday

I got home last night from Mint's wedding (which was so much fun by the way) and immediately checked the mailbox. I found this:

I opened the envelope to find this:

Thank you Kyle! Kyle, whom I have known since I was around seven years old. Thank you for a wonderful start to my birthday! And look! I already got my chocolate cake.

That was last night. This morning at 5am, Wil woke me up out of a deep sleep to which my repsonse was:
"Happy Birthday!" He exclaimed and gave me a kiss.
I guess he was so excited about my birthday that he couldn't sleep. So he went to the kitchen and made some eggs. Ari realized that Wil wasn't in the bed, and woke up saying:
"Daddy? Daddy!" Then he demanded to watch Blue's Clues. Wil obliged him and I went back to sleep. Later I found out that they had not watched Blue's Clues, but rather Terminator 2 because Ari was demanding to see "robots."

I slept till 8:30am. When I woke up, I found Wil and Ari back in the bed, but I can't remember how or when they got there. It's now 10:32am and they're still asleep. More later.

It's now 12:20pm. Ari is watching the same episode of Max and Ruby over and over again. Ari and Wil woke up at 11:15am. I made coffee and eggs. Ari keeps insisting that it is not my birthday, but his Uncle Jonathan's birthday instead. We are planning to go to the movies at 2:30pm. My parents are watching Ari.

Wil and I went to the movies while my parents watched Ari. We saw "It's Kind of a Funny Story." It was the first time we had gone to the movies in months. And I can't even remember the last time we went to the movies alone, meaning without Ari.

After the movie Wil treated me to a pedicure and a ten minute massage at a local nail salon.
Then we rushed home and had a pizza party ending in chocolate cupcakes hosted by my parents and attended by friends and family.

All in all it was a wonderful birthday!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Thursday In Which I Became Kris Kross

This morning I met my friend Jenn and her baby Jonathan who is only six weeks old. When they arrived, I was thought I was ready to face the day. Until I realized that there was something wrong with my pants. I couldn't seem to fit my cell phone the back pocket. Then I looked down and found this to be the case:

Pregnancy brain has struck again. I made Jenn take this picture to document how much I've lost it. I cannot believe I actually put my pants on backwards.

After I corrected my dressing mistake, we headed out to get Ari a haircut. I needed to fix my "mom cut" before Mint's impending nuptials. Needless to say, Ari was displeased with the whole process of getting his hair trimmed, but here are the results.

Ari standing with Jenn and Jonathan at the barber shop

Ari complaining about his haircut

After the haircut was over, we went out for pizza and got to admire sweet little Jonathan and his mama. I forgot how small and cute babies are at six weeks!

When all the humans were all fed, we bought some cat food, which my cats were grateful for later, and headed to the playground to catch the last moments of sun.

All at once around 50 elementary school children piled into the playground like barbarians. Ari was caught in the middle of this mess. A kind soul, a girl maybe around seven or eight years old, actually handed him to me through the cross fire.

Once Ari was collected, we headed back to my apartment and Wil met and snuggled with little Jonathan. I joked that he needed to practice with baby #2 on the way!

All in all it was a fun day! Except for my pants rebelling against me. So tell me, have you ever put your clothes on backwards, or is it just me?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Miraculous Thing Happened Today!

I was out to lunch with Ari today in my neighborhood. I was standing at the cash register at this sandwich shop, when a woman gasped as she looked down at my feet.

"Your shoe is untied!" She said in horrified voice. "Do you want me to tie it for you? I mean, you're pregnant!"

It only took me a second to reply:
"Yes! Thank you so much!"

With that, she bent down, tied my shoe and then paused.
"Do you want me to double knot it?"
"That would be great!" I said stifling a laugh as she saved the day.

In fact, her handy work is still in place.

Wordless Wednesday: Brunch

All photographs © 2010 Craig Runyan