Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Draft

Dominic had his first fantasy football draft today. Here's how it went down.

First round draft pick consultation.
Tom Brady. DONE.
Belichick evasive on Tom Brady's SORE THROWING SHOULDER.
No, SERIOUSLY. Dude, is this a joke?
Because I'm new here, guys. Don't I get a DO OVER?


I love the look on both faces.

Dominic daring to touch the cat but looking to me for backup. Nola--who tolerates Gabriella's pouncing, squeezing and general roughhousing--deciding if she will extend the same courtesy to the newest member of our brood.

I love my mother's reaction to this photo even more.

From: Nana B.

Sent: Friday, August 28, 2009 9:11 AM

Honest to goodness, Tara. WHEN are you going to get rid of that potoire. I literally gasped when I opened the picture. Shana angel doesn't realize what is lying next to him and just LOOK at how that mangy creature is looking at my precious cherub. WHY do you let that cat so close to the kids?

In my mother's defense, she is not an animal hater. She's simply terrified of cats.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Domi's first night in his crib.


We bought a crib last week, from Walmart, to celebrate Dominic's five-month birthday. It converts into a toddler bed, day bed, even full-size bed. We spent less than $200 on it. That includes shipping.

I know. Far cry from Gabriella's designer Bratt Decor crib we purchased months before she was born. But it's a recession. He's a second child. And we're smarter this time around.

The Serena and Lily bedding? Not so recession friendly, but I did buy it on sale. Go, Mom! And it features the most adorable parade of elephants, giraffes and lions in silhouette.

So, good night, baby boy.

Sweet dreams.

Don't make mommy put you in this in the morning.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"If I count all my blessings, it puts a smile on my face." - Sugarland

Domi loves his new tub seat, mostly because he's now eye-to-eye with his sister.

And Gabriella loves it, too, because she now has a captive audience for her antics.
Like putting the rubber drain cover on his head like a hat.

Then she proceeds to laugh her ass off.

And he joins in.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Pink Cupcakes

Since Gabriella has long outgrown the custom of taking pictures in our oversized recliner to measure growth, I wanted to start another tradition to celebrate her monthly birthday.


Tonight, in honor of the 22nd and Gabriella's new favorite book, we baked heart-shaped Pinkalicious cupcakes.

DJR @ 5 months

We're getting a better look at Dominic's personality, and it's AWESOME!

He gets a lot of attention from perfect strangers because of his dark hair and blue eyes, and he returns most of it with flirtatious smiles. He is super affectionate and laughs easily, especially at pretty much anything his sister does. He loves diaper changes and bathtime, standing up and chewing on blankets. And his shirts are frequently soaked with massive amounts of drool.
There you have it: our baby boy at five months old!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Bye-Bye Bouncy.

Domi got hooked up this week.

The Bugaboo chair replaced the car seat on stroller rides for a whole new view of the world.

We dug through Gabriella's old toys to find the ones Domi can enjoy on his tummy, since lying on his back is so July 2009.

We went to Babies R Us for a tub seat and also came home with a 360-degree play station complete with technicolor piano keys, oversized (and overhappy, if you ask me) flowers and a spinning frog who is quickly becoming an obsession.

Mom and Dad also ordered your very own crib. No more awkward nights' sleep in the Pack-n-Play. No more naps in the bouncy chair. You're getting a proper bed to bomb around in. All we ask in return is that you sleep through the night. Deal?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Meet Marshmallow

I want Gabriella to learn how to garden, so we went to the local flower shop to buy a plant for the fire escape. A safe, unambitious starting point.

The nice man who owns the shop helped me identify good student plants while Gabriella wandered around petting the animals. Yes, the animals. Sock monkeys. Teddy bears. Stone bunnies.

Mama? MAMA?! MUMS?! See him? See monkey? I LOVE MONKEYS. He's SOOOO cute. Good boy. I have him?

The nice man is now looking at me like a concerned zoo keeper and I'll be damned if I'm going home with a sock monkey. A stone bunny, on the other hand, would look awfully cute on our fire escape ...

Central Air

Our central air conked out Saturday, on the HOTTEST night of the year. Really, Central Air? Really?! Why do you have to do us like that?

On Sunday, we picked up an AC unit from the restaurant and another from Michael's parents, which turned out to be a wonderful excuse to visit the grandparents.

At home, Michael and I camped out in the living room. On an air bed. Living the good life. Domi set up shop (a.k.a. the Pack-n-Play) one room over, in the kitchen. The three of us shared the downstairs AC unit while Gabriella stayed upstairs in her room with an AC unit to herself. Clearly this is her world and the rest of us just live in it.

By the way, we are now back on good terms with Central Air, four days and one thousand dollars later. Hmmph.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Library

Gabriella went to the library for the first time today.

We had the entire children's floor to ourselves, and she was uncharacteristically cautious at first. Taking one book from the shelf at a time. Spinning a globe of the world. Lifting up a metal bookend and asking her favorite question of all time: "Mama, what's this?"

Then Gabriella came across the animal puppets, one of which was a giraffe. A GIRAFFE, MAMA! A GIRAFFE!!

Oh, boy.

Gabriella started to dart around bookcases. She stopped listening to me altogether. And eventually she tripped right over her own white-sandaled feet. Knocked her head against a wooden chair. (The sound was dreadful). Screamed bloody murder. (This sound was worse).

Luckily, neither she nor the librarian held a grudge. Once outside, sitting on the curb in the oppressive heat and waiting for Michael to pick us up, Gabriella turned to me and said, "Mama, I love the library."


Oh, and for the record, after all that, the book Gabriella checked out is:


Gabriella invited her friends over for tea this afternoon.


Big week for feet in our house.

Dominic discovered his ...

... while Gabriella learned how to put hers in shoes, all by herself.

That's all. Carry on.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Supper in the Garden

Tonight, I packed a picnic and we walked to the community garden in our neighborhood (my new favorite hangout).

Gabriella enjoyed her apple juice and peanut butter sandwich.

And Dominic enjoyed his nap.

Little Mama

One of the first questions people ask me about the baby isn't about the baby at all. It's about Gabriella and how she likes her little brother. Well, let me tell you. She absolutely adores him. He absolutely adores her. Big love affair going on between the two of them. Big.

Gabriella acts as if she is Dominic's real mom. She can barely buckle herself into a highchair, but she tries to buckle Dominic into his carseat.

Gabriella coyly runs away when it's time for her diaper change, but she's a captive audience for Dominic's diaper changes. In fact, I've caught her practicing how to change a diaper herself.

When I was pregnant with Dominic, I was afraid I'd never love another baby like I love Gabriella. I cried when my water broke because I felt as if she and I had lost our time together as mother and only child.

Now, four and a half months later, I know that, yes, you can fall head over heels in love with your second child; and, no, you are not taking anything away from your first child. You are giving her (and yourself) the most amazing gift.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Our Perfect Day

Presents and Skype.
Blueberry pancakes and sausage on the front stoop.
Jogging through the Charlestown Navy Yard.
Pineapples and bubbles at the sandbox.
Salmon and sushi, chicken parm and chicken salad from Whole Foods.
Ice cream sandwiches.
Bathtubs and pajamas.
Hugs and kisses.
Sweet dreams.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Sticky Fingers

Michael and I turned our backs for one moment at the grocery store. In that time, Gabriella helped herself to a banana in the cart, peeled it and took a bite. By the time we turned around, she was admiring her teeth marks.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Gardens for Charlestown

Gabriella and I spent Saturday morning in Charlestown's all-volunteer community garden.

We watched white butterflies, kicked fallen apples, tossed a pretend tomato salad from gravel rocks and then rested on this adorable stone bench with two carved bunnies for legs.

Now, Michael has taught Gabriella not to touch flowers or distrub bumble bees while they're working, but sometimes she can't help herself.

Finally, it was time to go home.