Thursday, December 30, 2010


"Ari, don't put clay on your chalkboard."
"Because it doesn't belong there."
"Because you play with clay at the table, not on the chalkboard."
"Please stop asking 'why?' I don't have another answer."

Anyone else experiencing this?

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Waiting Game

Hanukkah is over, Christmas has past, and 2011 is fast approaching. I'm preoccupied with another matter, the impending arrival of my 2nd child. I'm so tired of being pregnant. Here the things associated with pregnancy that are irritating me the most at the moment:
  • The conspicuous egg-like attachment to the front of my body- yes, there's a person in there, and I know, I know "pregnancy is beautiful," but you know what? I'm over it! I want her out of my body and in the world. NOW!
  • My raging hormones and (consequently) pronounced and seemingly uncontrollable mood swings.
  • Hemorrhoids, one of them is so big that I think it could run for public office. I've asked it, aloud, to leave but it insists in belongs on me.
  • I'm exhausted and in constant pain in my back and legs all the time.
  • It takes me 80,000 times longer to get anywhere, because I have to waddle there as opposed to walking, driving or using public transportation.
I'm ready to take some castor oil and get this party started and I'm only 35 weeks.

For those of you that have been pregnant before, do you remember feeling this way?

Monday, December 20, 2010

I'm a Drill Sergeant ...I Mean a Mom!

I had a realization today. Ari is getting away with a lot. There are several reasons for this:

1. I'm 8 1/2 months pregnant and too tired to fight with him
2. Two-year-olds are inherently exhausting creatures
3. Being a mom takes discipline and I just want to take a big old nap.

Do you see a running theme here? Exhaustion!

Today I decided I was going to stop this pattern of indifference due to chronic fatigue. Today was the day I was going to take charge.

He wanted to watch TV first thing in the morning.
"NO." I said plainly. "We're going to eat breakfast!"
He wanted to watch TV again after breakfast.
"NO." I replied "We're going to the library."
He wanted to go home after the library.
"NO." I told him. "We're going to the playground!"
He ran around at the playground and when it was time to go home, didn't want to leave.
"Bye!" I said waving to him at the gate, he followed me with no hesitation.
When we got home, He refused to eat lunch and demanded chocolate milk.
"NO chocolate milk. Eat your sandwich first!" He screamed, cried and finally he begrudging ate his peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat and an entire apple.
He wanted to watch TV again!
"NO, play with your cars." I instructed him. "Then in 15 minutes you are going to take a nap." He whined, screamed and eventually played with his cars.
15 minutes later I said:
"Okay, it's time to take a nap."
"I want to nap on the chair." He was sitting in the most uncomfortable chair in our apartment.
"No, you need to nap in the bed." I advised him.
I carried him literally kicking and screaming to the bed and he fell asleep next to Wil.

Based upon today's events, I think I could easily have a career in the military. No?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Labor Gown

I was feeling an intense urge to buy something so I went over to visit my friend and found this:

"What is it?" You might be thinking. Well, it's a disposable labor gown! Now, I'm not the type of person who needs to look put together all the time, but for some reason this thing really appealed to me.

When I think back to my labor with Ari, I was wearing this hot little number:

I mean, surely you see the aesthetic difference. The more attractive labor gown (pictured above) boasts that it is 100% cotton, very comfortable, and has room for "fetal monitors" and "IV cords." I plan on doing a home birth, so hopefully I won't have to worry about such things.

Anyway, for $20, I figured, why the hell not?

Although, I will say, that by the end of my labor with Ari, I wanted nothing to do with my hospital gown and ripped the entire thing off when I was ready to push. We'll see if that happens again this time.

What was your latest impulse purchase?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Why I Love My Mom- *Content Contains Gross Bodily Functions- Beware!

Last night I couldn't sleep. It was 1am, then it was (all of a sudden) 2am. Wil was at work. I was dizzy, nauseated, and my heartburn was terrible. I was tasting and re-tasting the chili I made for dinner. Ari was knocked out on the couch, and I wanted to follow suit but I just could not sleep. The baby was swimming around in my uterus at a rapid pace, looking for a suitable organ to kick.

Finally, I relented and called my mom.
"Mom, I can't sleep. I feel like I'm going to vomit, but I can't."

It was 2:30am. She didn't hesitate. She climbed three flights of stairs to my apartment, and sat by my side as I threw up the entire contents of my stomach into a white plastic garbage can.

Meanwhile Ari was shouting:
"Mommy! You no throw up!"
"It's okay, honey," My mom said to Ari as I was detoxing my system "Mommy is going to be okay."

I'm okay. But it's only because of my amazing mother.

Thank you mom! I love you!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Mom Guilt: Share Your Stories

Yesterday my nine year old niece, Francesca, (or as Ari calls her "Ches-ca") came over for a play date. Ari and Ches-ca were painting, Wil and my mom were watching them create their collaborative work of art, and I was cooking chili in the kitchen. All of a sudden Wil called across the apartment:

"Sarah, what did Ari eat today?"
"Why?" I asked suspiciously.
"Because he's throwing up." He replied.

I dropped the knife I was using to cut an onion and bolted from the kitchen to the living room. When I got there, Ari had thrown up more than a college frat boy.

"How did he get sick again?" Wil asked. Ari just got over having Croup, and now he appears to be sick again.

He woke up with a fever in the middle of the night last night and vomited for the second time. I've concluded he has a virus. But Wil's question stayed in my head: "How did he get sick again?"

My internal answer is to blame myself. He wasn't dressed well enough for this 27 degree weather, he needs warmer pants, long underwear, He's not eating enough, he's not eating well, I'm taking him to germ infested places like the library and communal play spaces.

Whatever the case may be, it is most certainly my fault that he's sick. This is what I like to call mom guilt. I'd like to think I come by it honestly with my Jewish heritage, but I think mom guilt transcends cultural boundaries.

As mothers, if something "goes wrong" with our kids, we blame ourselves. Who else do we have to blame?

What I want to know is, what do you feel guilty about? Post a comment with a story where you felt particularly guilty. By the way, guilt is not exclusive to moms, dad guilt is alive and well. Dads: please share your stories too!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Potty Training Day Three Postponed Due to Baby Shower!

Yesterday was my baby shower. It was beautiful! Mint did an amazing job coordinating it and raised enough money from my friends and family to buy this bassinet:

Ari's old bassinet was recalled so we were in need of a new one. It rocks, literally, and it also rocks as in: it's awesome!

There was so much excitement yesterday, that Wil and I decided (upon the recommendation of early childhood expert Mint) to leave Ari in a diaper for the shower. I mean, I had to focus on eating as much food as possible and hanging out with the people I love.

Here are some pictures from the shower, which was held at The Moxie Spot.

Cordy- If you're reading this, I don't know what happened to the picture of us! It disappeared from my camera.

Anyway, thank you again to my amazing best friend, Mint, for this wonderful shower! I love you!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Potty Training Day Two Part Deux- Potty Training and Multi-Tasking Don't Mix

Despite the yellow paint incident, things were going so well today. I took Ari to the toilet every 30 minutes and he peed each time. He wasn't thrilled about visiting the bathroom so frequently, often screaming "No! No potty!" But he peed and received a toy car when he did; that was alright in his book.

Then I got cocky. Since things were going so well, I thought, why not multi-task? I decided to do 18,000 loads of laundry. I dragged my little toilet monster downstairs to my parent's house, put on an favorite episode of Blue's Clues for the boy and loaded up the washing machine and dryer. As I was bending my enormous pregnant belly down to reach the clothes in the dryer, I smelled something funny.

I thought the smell might be the cat litter, so I dismissed my superhero-esque pregnant bloodhound sense.

I went to check in on Ari and as soon as he spotted me he announced:
"Mommy! I went poopie!"
" need to go poop or you went poop?" I asked hopefully.
"I went poopie over there!" He repeated and pointed to his underwear and the exact location in the living room where he squatted down to do his dirty work.

I sighed a long old person's sigh, and when I was done, I took care of the pressing situation and gave the poop monster a bath.

A word to the wise, if you're potty training don't try to do anything else but the task at hand. Laundry + potty training = :-(

Day 3 should be interesting.

Potty Training Day Two Part One- The Joys of Yellow Paint

Since Wil worked so hard getting Ari to use the potty yesterday, I decided to let him sleep in and work with Ari myself.

This morning I took his diaper off and instead of letting him roam around naked, I put him in Thomas underwear. He promptly peed on himself and all over the kitchen floor.

Grandma and Grandpa Fader came up with some bribery: a case of tiny plastic cars they got on 42nd Street for a bargain price. I emptied the cars into a Target bag and showed them to Ari.

He was immediately intrigued. I told him he could have one car if he peed on the potty and two if he pooped. It took a while, but after several visits to the potty every 30 minutes he finally peed twice! He got a car each time.

I was in a great mood, until lunch time. I went into the kitchen while Ari was in the living room ostensibly playing with his toys. When I returned to the living room bearing lunch, I found this:

That was about 1 % of the mess. There was yellow paint all over the floor and all over Ari! Needless to say, a wardrobe change occurred as well a visit to the bathroom sink.

Then it was time for lunch:

To be continued.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Potty Training Day One Part Two

After much nakedness, Wil put Ari in Thomas underwear. Ari ran up to Wil frantically and said:
"Daddy underwear, Daddy underwear!

Wil rushed him to the toilet, and...he pooped!

So Ari got a special prize:

Potty Training Day One Part One

Since I'm bored and depressed, I decided that the next logical step to combat my SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) was to start a project: potty training Ari.

This morning, I informed him that I was going to change him.
"I don't want to change!" He said, a familiar saying of his.
"What if I told you, you didn't have to wear a diaper?" I asked him
"Huh?" He replied quizically.
"After I take off your diaper, you don't have to put a new one on." I said.
"No diaper?" He asked thoroughly confused.
"Yes. Would you like that?" I asked
"Yes!" He confirmed.

For the next several hours, he peed in corners, on his Thomas sheets, on the couch and each time he said one of the following:
"I went pee!" "I peed on my leg!" "I peed on Thomas [insert hysterical laughter]." "I pooped." He didn't, he just peed.

Wil and I kept putting him back on the potty at regular intervals and bribing him with food (cookies) or TV to sit/produce something on the potty. Okay, maybe the cookies weren't such a great idea, but I was at the end of my rope with all the pee everywhere.

My great friend Donna was here, and in between drawing an elephant and two cats for Ari on his easel:

She read online that this naked method works best if you have the kid "help" you clean up after they pee/poop on the floor. Then take them to the toilet.

At one point after he had peed on the floor, I took him to the potty, and I had to hold him in place on the toilet as he was screaming:
"No, no no!"
Yeah, that wasn't exactly a shining mothering moment for me.

Then something exciting happened- can you tell I have no life? Ari opened the bathroom door and, of his own accord, got onto the potty, and sat there himself! He didn't really do anything, but it was a start!

Wil announced that he had an idea.
"I have an idea, I'll be back in ten minutes, trust me."
He was gone for 20 minutes and came back holding this:

"Ari, if you poop on the potty, you get this!" He said holding up the box.
Immediately Ari made a bee-line for the potty and gave it all he had.

But still nothing. To be continued...

Friday, December 10, 2010

Can I Have This Baby Now?

I don't know whether it's the cold weather or the fact that I am 174 lbs and 33 weeks pregnant or potentially both, but I'm feeling depressed. It also doesn't help that when I woke up this morning the first thing that greeted me was a giant pile of cat vomit.

It's hard to move around, go up and down stairs, chase after Ari, or do much of anything besides eat. I can't even sleep! This is not even the worst part. My mood is so low. I'm straight up depressed, there's no up and down anymore.

I'd really like to have this baby already. Don't get me wrong, I'm not asking to have her today, that would bring on a whole new set of complications. But, it's tough to be pregnant in the winter. I suppose it's not easy to be pregnant any time of the year, but having a giant uterus with a fetus inside of it attached to you in the brutally cold weather presents it's own set of challenges.

For instance, by the time I get the energy to do anything or go anywhere, there is a limited amount of daylight left for me to experience.

I've met a bunch of moms with two kids that have told me that it feels much better (not that it's easier by any means) to have two kids (a toddler and a newborn) rather than being pregnant and having a toddler.

A newborn, they say, is very portable (I remember this with Ari) and you can put them in a baby carrier and run around after your older child.

All I know is that I am tired of being pregnant. The End!

Anyone out there feeling the same way? Or do you remember being tired of being pregnant? Or does this rant make you afraid of becoming pregnant? Don't be afraid, it's worth it in the end. I can tell you firsthand.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Winter Doldrums

I've never much liked the cold weather. I grew up here, in New York City, and my childhood winters were full of brutally cold weather and of course snow. Though global warming has changed the climate here slightly, winters in New York are still intense. What's worse about them is that these days is that the cold comes on suddenly, like someone punching you in the face.

It's warm here from the summer until November, then all of a sudden it's 33 degrees and you don't want to leave your house.

There isn't much to do outside without freezing.

When Wil, Ari and I went camping this past weekend in Western New Jersey, we met a woman who told us that by March, she had to retreat to Jekyll island in Georgia to escape the "Winter Doldrums." I'd never heard the term before so I looked it up. Apparently it means feeling depressed because of the cold weather, lacking energy, sleeping a lot, not eating or eating too much. All of this is caused by the lack of sunlight and cold weather.

There are some fun indoor things to do once you manage to get outside, like going to the library, or hitting up some fun museums. But it's the "getting outside" that's the issue. The cold can be intimidating. Ari hates it too. It's hard to convince him to get dressed and go outside because he is aware of how cold it is and doesn't want to deal with the icy winds. I asked him today:
"Do you want to go for a walk? Do you want to go to the library?"
He shook his head.
"Do you want to go outside?"
He shook his head even more vigorously than before.

Am I alone here? Is anyone else having a hard time leaving the house? How do you combat the winter doldrums?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

32 Weeks and PTUSTS (Post-Traumatic Ultrasound Technician Syndrome)

Today was my 32 week ultrasound. Mint came with me to the appointment and witnessed firsthand that my baby girl is currently measuring 4lbs, stuck her tongue out, and literally put her foot in her mouth multiple times. Clearly she is genetically related to me.

At the end of the ultrasound, Mint commented that she was surprised that I didn't ask more questions during the procedure, like what body parts certain images on the screen were. She wondered if it was because I was used to having ultrasounds with Ari. I told her this was not the case, but rather I'd been traumatized by an ultrasound technician in the past.

When I was pregnant with Ari, Wil and I went to the 20 week ultrasound so excited to find out if we were having a boy or a girl.

During the procedure, I was asking the technician questions left and right;
"What's this? What's that? Is that a leg?" That sort of thing. Finally she had had enough. She turned to me and said in a very thick Russian accent:
"Do not talk during procedure!"

Wil and I looked at one another shocked. Needless to say, I shut my mouth. At the end of the procedure, she handed Wil a picture of Ari's penis and said:
"Congratulations! It's a boy!"

Upon reflection, I figured that the questions were distracting this technician from doing her job, but I really wanted to know what I was looking at on the screen!

From that day forth, I haven't attempted to ask what things were doing an an ultrasound procedure, but rather, I wait until the end to ask anything. Yes, I am the victim of PTUSTS: Post-Traumatic Ultrasound Technician Syndrome.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Being on The Same Page

When you have two people telling you what to do all the time, as Ari does, life can be confusing. In addition to having different personalities, Wil and I also have different parenting styles.

I try to be consistent with discipline, particularly time-outs. Yesterday, Ari decided that he didn't want to clean up his toy cars. I put him in time-out and he still did not want to do it. He was in time-out three times in a row before he actually did what I asked him to do.

It took every once of energy I had not to give up and clean the cars up myself.

Wil, on the other hand, does do time-outs with Ari, but he also gets frustrated and just cleans up Ari's mess because a) he doesn't want the house to be a wreck, which is fair enough and b) he is annoyed that Ari won't do what he's asking him to do.

I'm not always consistent either, sometimes, I'm too tired to deal with the screaming and the whining and I end up cleaning up after Ari out of sheer frustration.

However, I think it's important for Wil and I to be on the same page with discipline. I want Ari to be able to have a predictable response when he acts up. But is this even possible? I remember as a child, if my dad said "no" to something, immediately, the next step was to ask my mom. I knew that I could divide them.

I'm afraid that Ari will learn to do the same.

How do you, as parents, stay on the same page?

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Last Trip Before New Baby

Wil and I took Ari on a last minute camping trip this weekend. Okay, to be fair, it wasn't true camping, it was more like staying in a cabin in the woods. This trip was important to me because I'm 32 weeks pregnant, and this would be the last trip that would include just the three of us. I wanted Ari to have some special time with me and Wil before the new baby arrives.

Here are some pictures from our journey in no particular order of importance:

Friday, December 3, 2010

My New Best Friend

I'd like to introduce you to my new best friend:

She's really cool. Ari likes her too:

Well, to be fair, we first met two years ago, when I was pregnant with Ari. Maybe that's why he likes her so much. But then we lost touch. We've recently reunited. Have you guys ever met?