Friday, July 31, 2009

Flashback Friday: Nap Time

December 2, 2007

July 12, 2009

Monday, July 27, 2009


(Shots + Tears) + New Chair = Happy Girl

Friday, July 24, 2009

This made me smile...

If you're going to have a big wedding, at least put them to work.

Pretend Play

Logging some notes...

Playette is cracking us up these days with her pretending. She is currently way into the following:
  • Cleaning (having her own dustbuster has come in handy)

  • Talking on the phone (most often when one of us is on the phone)

  • Eating (she does this for real too, of course, but if you hold out your hand, she'll playfully pretend to take something out of it and put it in her mouth)

  • Fake tears - The other day at dinner, she decided that she didn't want to eat anymore and started to cry. We continued to eat. She paused, peeked through her fingers to see if we were still looking, and then started up again. We laughed and then she did too. Classic.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Day at the Farm

We thought we'd try something new recently and head out to the valley to an event that I read about in one of my email newsletters.

It was only recently that I realized that these turn into those flowers right there. No, really. I never once connected the two.

I planted some lettuce seeds. (You know they died, right? I'm about as bad at growing things as BD is of taking pictures of me that don't cut my head off.)

Always riding in style. I'm so glad that the backpack is BD's domain and not mine. Playette is getting heavy these days.

Cookie monster.

It smelled so good here. I wish I cooked well/often enough to take advantage of this.

And then there was a salad eating contest. Finally, my talent had a purpose! I had to sign up.

Giving the competition the side-eye.

Almost done...


BD said I was the "first loser."

I didn't care though because my personal thought was that 2nd place had better prizes anyway. Plus, I got free lunch! (Head tilted to prevent decapitation.)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Come On Get Happy

I'm still laughing at how one commenter friend over at Lisa's blog said that we need a tour bus. That's so true!

Check out some of what we did while we were in the LA area on Saturday.

Meeting that family was such a joy.

Have you ever met a celebrity or just someone you know all about that hasn't met you yet? You know that feeling when they introduce themselves and you're thinking "But of course I know who you are!"?

That's kinda how it was for me on Saturday.

I was all, "Hi Kevin! Where's Joey? Oh, Annabelle is so cute! Why is Daisy hiding? Lilah is such a big girl! Oh, can I hold Finn?"


Playette loved hanging with the kids and they were so sweet and welcoming to her. I just couldn't get over that. That group photo in Lisa's post was totally unstaged. They all were sitting there together like that, engaged and happy.


When we left there, we went over to Redondo Beach to meet up with BD's friends. Playette's great-grandmother came to pick her up for the night and we got to spend an adult evening that included walking along the (warm!) beach and bike riding.

Part of why trips like that are so nice for me is because I miss summer so much. Check out the there/here contrast:

It got even hotter than this later on.

We pretty much cut the temperature in half. That's how we roll here in my 'hood.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Wednesdays with Mama: Audiology Edition

Prepare for cuteness overload. I am just so in love with this kid. Don't get me wrong, she drives me nuts too (yeah, she's two all right), but she's just so darn cute these days.

Plus, I think she may just like me back a little now. Before, she was all, "Eh. You can stay," but it currently seems like she actually cares if I'm around or not and that feels kinda good.

So, you may know that I have every other Wednesday off from work. Well, up until now, I've been jam-packing those two days a month with appointments and such (in part due to guilt that BD's daily schedule allows him the opportunity to take her to more therapy appointments than mine does). Granted, we were going to Parents' Place every once in a while, but really, we were more busy that anything. Fun? Not so much.

Enough of that.

I think next week we have the 24 month Well Baby doctor visit, but I've already put it in my datebook that we're going to the aquarium the first Wednesday in August. I just have to remember to pick up the free pass from the library. If you're local and want to come, please do join us for the seahorse (!!!) exhibit. I've got room for four more people on the pass.

Last week, in keeping with the Whirlwind Wednesday trend, we went to the Audiologist. Playette hates this. Never have I seen six months go by as fast as they do between Audiology visits. I swear it always seems like we were just there. But every time, it never fails, the Aud is all, "See you in six months," and I begrudgingly make the appointment.

It's not that we think Playette can't hear. We just don't know how well exactly yet. No. Scratch that. We haven't caught on paper how well she can hear yet.

If you ask me, she can hear ants digging tunnels in the backyard.

But, of course, no one is asking me.

So we go.

I think we must just like wasting gas and putting 70 miles on the car each way, personally.

Maybe it's that guilt thing again. At least for me. I think that because Playette has this dx, I'm afraid that I'm going to miss something that's going to set her back and not allow her the opportunity to reach her full potential. I mean, if she truly does have hearing issues, and we don't address them in a timely manner, then that would affect her speech, which is huge.

So we go. Until I can come up with a better idea.

Or she just flat out tells me that the clapping bear and yapping dog are annoying and she'd really rather we stop trying to stick too-big tubes in her tiny ear canals.

I am not ruling out the latter actually happening.

And now? The faux toes.

After breakfast.

Strutting around the waiting room. Happy.

Having a fit of despair in the Aud booth. Unhappy.

Adding some drama. Devastated.

Back in the waiting room. Thrilled.

Time to make a new appointment. Contemplating.

Appointment sheet in-hand. Destructive.

Hanging out while mama eats lunch and reflects on stuff. Stinkin' cute.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

And then on that Sunday we set stuff on fire in a public place.

I am such a city girl. Bonfire on the beach? Yeah, right.

But now? I want to do it for every meal. I am smitten.

Mmmmm, S'mores.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Highlights: 7/4/09

On that Saturday, we went to a cookout at some friends' house. Lots of good food and great company.

Playette has always had a bit of a fear of animals, but she seems to be getting better as time goes on. As long as the interaction is at a pace with which she is comfortable, it can go well. The hosts have the most patient dog ever. She lets Playette touch her, with nary a reaction. I love seeing the Littlest get excited and sign "dog." She even fed the dog from her hand, which was huge.

I made a festive cake. No, really.

She was knocking, but no one answered.

That's my girl.

She's all, "Look at me!"

I challenge you to a scream-off, Mama.

Tough competition.


Mama never had a chance.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Highlights: 7/3/09

I was about to share some more recent photos, but once I uploaded the pictures, I realized that I missed out on some good ones from what turned out to be a really great weekend last week.

Let's get started, shall we?

On Friday night, BD surprised me with a "Margarita Friday" gathering. How did he plan and execute a party in my own house without my even knowing?

Well, basically, he let me sleep most of the day. Which is a gift all in itself. I didn't suspect a thing. Luckily, when I did up and decide to come downstairs, I was fully clothed and clean. Pure luck, that was, since that's not exactly a "given" with me and there were people down there and all.

Cake! With toys!

Too many candles.

Mmmmm. This was, like, healthy or something. Because there was fruit on it. Right?!

I love the look Playette is giving FNPT here. She's all, "What are you doing here? This is my domain and I don't work on weekends."

At some point during the night, I built this city out of blocks. (I vaguely recall a few of us playing with toys for a little while.) When Playette found it the next morning, she promptly destroyed it.

Another great gift from BD: clean kitchen on Saturday morning.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

"Bagging, of course."

You know, just when I start to think that everything is cool, when Playette is just like any other kid her age, something happens.

Sometimes, I can let it go, thankfully. Other times, it bugs me. Maybe even to tears.

But, regardless, stuff happens. When your kid is unique, people notice. Even well-meaning people.

So, yesterday, there we were at the place that's not In and Out, right after a not-quite-ideal visit with the Audiologist (her hearing's good, cooperation is bad) and this happened:

Stranger Lady: Would you like help with the umbrella?

Me: (Hm, I guess maybe I should take Playette out of the direct sunlight. Is this lady judging me and my parenting skills? Oh, screw it.) Sure. Thank you.

Another woman comes to sit outside. She is pregnant and with a 2-3 year-old girl. She leaves to go get something from the car and asks me if I'll make sure that no one throws away their lunches. I agree to do so.

Stranger Lady: Down syndrome?

Me: Hm?

Stranger Lady: (nodding towards Playette) Down syndrome?

Me: Oh. Yes.

Stranger Lady: Yeah, my nephew has it.

Me: (trying to eat my dry sub that is not a cheeseburger) Oh, ok.

Stranger Lady: Yeah, he's 23 now. My sister kept him at home. Raised him herself.

Me: (giving up) That's great. Twenty-three years ago, some people still didn't do that.

Stranger Lady: Yeah, she kept him home. He's doing real well now. He has a girlfriend...

Me: (perking up)

Stranger Lady:...and a job at a grocery store. Bagging, of course.

Me: (deflated)

Stranger Lady: We just love him. He's our angel. Just like your girl. She's an angel from heaven.

And here's where the other lady returns with her daughter. For some reason, I got all passive-aggressive with her because of what I can only think was my dislike of the way the conversation had turned.

Me: Yeah. A lot of people don't want kids like mine. They get a lot of misinformation and think that hers isn't a life worth living.

I know kind of why I did this, though it doesn't excuse my behavior. I mean, if sooo many woman are choosing not to have babies diagnosed with, or simply suspected of having, Ds, they have to be somewhere right? People aren't really copping to it. That's their right, of course, and I don't expect them to check in with me first or anything, but when I'm being honest with myself, I do feel a little bitter.

Who is this woman and her (possibly) "perfect" baby? Is she as naive as I was in thinking that Ds would never be a part of her life because things like that don't happen to people like her? Has she done things in the past to make sure that it wouldn't be?

I didn't obsess about this for the rest of the day, nor did I get sad, but I was reminded that I still have a lot of growing to do.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

What would you say?

What would you say to a woman who has just found out she is carrying a baby with Down syndrome and is torn about what to do?

This question was posed on the Ds New Mama blog and got me thinking.

What I think I would first do it let that woman express whatever she was feeling at that moment: fear, frustration, anger, loss, etc. It’s all valid and I wouldn’t want her to feel guilty or afraid that I was going to be judgmental. Crying, yelling, or just being quiet are all things that I went through myself upon learning of my daughter’s diagnosis.

When she was ready, I’d talk, following her lead. I’d answer any and all questions that I could. I’d direct her to where she could find answers that I didn’t have. I’d advise her to write down anything else that came to her mind so that she could seek enough clarity to make a well-informed decision.

I’d offer to have her meet my daughter, if that were feasible, so that she could see that she is a child, first and foremost, not overcome by her diagnosis.

I’d tell her about local services, if it made sense to do so.

I’d hug her if I could.

I’d tell her the truth about how there will be highs and lows if she were to continue her pregnancy, just as would be the case with any child, and that her idea of “normal” and “perfect” would change.

I wouldn’t fill her head with platitudes. I’d tell her that everyday people have babies that require a little more than others and that she, too, could do it.

I’d bash other myths for her as well, while attempting not to overwhelm her with information.

I’d advise her to stay off of the Internet unless she knew exactly what she was reading since there is so much outdated information out there falsely presenting itself as accurate.

I’d suggest blogs that gave a true-world example of what her life could be like with a child with Ds.

I’d tell her that there are so many people in this world who make it their business to advocate for children like hers, to ensure that child would receive the best possible opportunity to reach his/her full potential. One day, she may be one of those people.

I would tell her that opportunities for people with Ds are growing steadily and her child can be provided with the tools to excel. Each generation has the chance to improve upon the successes of the past.

I'd make sure she knew of the extended Ds community that would welcome her and her baby into its fold with open arms.

I’d offer her any of the books I had with Ds as a subject matter, if she wanted to read them. (I'd warn her about the scary ones.)

I’d let her know that I would remain available to support her, if that's what she wanted or needed.

What I hope I wouldn't do is force my views on her. I would simply do my best to give her the most well-rounded view that I could. You can get "doom and gloom" regarding Ds just about anywhere. It's the real talk that is hard to reveal and that's what I would try to provide.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Check this out, BD.

I did it all by myself like a Big Girl, too.

Monday, July 6, 2009


It's been a while since I've shared these. Please know that, regardless of the fact that it may take me some time to pass them along, I really do love receiving the awards and appreciate your thoughtfulness. It's cool that people not only read here, but also like what they read here enough to think of me when it's time to pay the love forward.

So thank you.

Renee, who writes Life with my Special Ks, graced me with a TLC Award.

Aw, it's nice to be thought of as practicing tender, loving care.

I'd like to pass this one along to Linda at Lila's Miracle Life.


Sonia from A Hapa Girl and her Hapa Family sent over a Lemonade Award.

I would like to bestow this upon Lacia, whose blog, Outnumbered by Kids, I feel, shows great attitude/gratitude.


Many thanks go out to Lisa at Genetically Enhanced for the Honest Scrap Award.

This award comes with an assignment to tell 10 honest things about myself. A chance to blab? Well, alright!

1. My dream job is to be a cashier at Target.

2. I could stay in bed all day if you let me.

3. I watch a lot of crap TV. Horrible, I know.

4. I could swim before I could walk and I still enjoy it.

5. I love receiving real mail.

6. My mother first introduced me to driving a stick shift when were on the NJ Turnpike and she wanted a break from driving. Scary!

7. Driving in mountains is even more scary to me than #6.

8. I'm already considering growing my hair back out.

9. I'm lacking motivation these days.

10. I'm now officially 2 hours late for my "run." See #9.

I'd like to send this award over to Beth at Hannah's Shennanigans, whose blog I find encouraging.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th!

from Miss Independent/ence herself

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Dentist Update

I just made an appointment for Playette to visit the dentist for the very first time. Finally. We're going tomorrow. I've been afraid of this day for a long, long time for reasons that maybe some of you can understand. (ignorance of Ds within the medical world, her current discomfort with doctors, etc.)

So I'm on the phone with the receptionist and she's asking me the regular questions they ask of a first time patient's parent. She tells me which dentist we'll see tomorrow and start to dig in with questions about who has experience with kids like mine and then I'm all, "Whatever. We gotta start somewhere," and then it happened.

"By the way, my daughter has Ds, so could you please inform Dr. H of this beforehand because I don't want this to be a thing. I don't expect him to know everything about Ds and I'm more than happy to work with him as a team on my daughter's care. Just tell him to ask questions if he has any."

Her: "Uh, oh, ok."

Me: "Kthanksbye."

Ha! Felt good.

I feel so much more empowered after the last few days, lemme tell you.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Me and Mr. P

Me: Hey, Mr. P!

Mr. P: Hi.

Me: Guess what.

Mr. P: What?

Me: It's my birthday.

Mr. P: Happy Birthday!

Me: How old are you, Mr. P?

Mr. P: 40.

Me: How old do you think I am?

Mr. P: 20.


Hawaii: Day 3

This was a pretty full day that started with us meeting up with some local friends who agreed to show us around their island for the day. We really appreciated the time they devoted to showing our little family such a good time.

Our first stop was the North Shore where we hung out at Waimea Bay, which is absolutely gorgeous. We went snorkeling and did some hanging out, enjoying the cool water and watching a pod of dolphins play just offshore.

Before you get confused, that's us - not the dolphins. I just like that picture cause the water's all purdy.

After the beach, we were hungry and headed to Haleiwa for lunch.

Yes, we ate shrimp off of a graffiti-adorned truck. I asked if it was like eating food off a street cart in NYC. If it is, I don't care 'cause it was GOOD.

I was half-expecting Playette's throat to close up though. It would be just our luck that she'd inform us that she was allergic when we were so far on the outskirts. But, thankfully, no issues other than the fact that she roughed me for a nice chunk of my food.

Next, we went over to Waimea Valley Park. It was a beautiful nature walk to the falls. Coincidentally, the distance is just about equivalent to that of hiking Diamond Head, but, yeah. TOTALLY DIFFERENT.

I couldn't resist getting in. When BD took this photo, it had gotten really crowded all of the sudden so I thought I'd help you out some. I'm at the end of the yellow arrow. (check out my mad MS Paint skillz)

The rest of the day, we rode around, getting a great view of the mountains. We didn't take many photos this day because it was all about the video camera. BD is a huge Lost fan (I go along for the ride) and he was getting a kick out of seeing all these different places where filming took place.

All in all, it was a great day.

Vacation recaps seem like a decent idea at first, but then I start to feel like a dork after the first post. Ah, what to do, what to do...