Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The loss of our beloved tree

Last Saturday was just your typical day around the house. Lily was down for her afternoon nap. I was desperately hunting down "the world's most perfect big girl bed" via the internet (more on this soon) and Dingle was working.

And then this happened...

Out in front of our 120 year old house stood a towering Oak that was probably nearly as old. The tree had gotten sick in her old age (a fungus) and the town had flagged it several times in the last 5 years for removal, but there she stood. (It bears mentioning here that a few years ago we went to the tree hearing to try and protect our dear tree and the arborist said he would keep his eye one it). Last summer she wasn't looking as good as she once had and we figured this this was the year that they would take her down. Turns out she had her own plan.

I can't even tell you how loud the sound of the tree crashing to the ground was because I am fairly certain that I was having an out of body experience. We called 911 and went out on the porch to see for ourselves what had happened. So many horrific things could have happened but didn't. The tree easily could have killed someone, a fire could have started from all the downed wires (the transformer was launched 30 ft across the street from the telephone pole next door), I can't even begin to imagine the damage to our house had she fallen in the other direction. Admittedly, I cried a few scared tears thinking about all of the what-ifs and then I cried a few more for our poor tree. Lily slept through the whole thing.

Once we had confirmed that everyone up and down the street was okay and that the police were on their way we went back inside to make calls and prepare for a night with no power. Lily and I were sick with a miserable cold so motivating myself to do much of anything was a struggle. I called home and let them know we might need a rescue, initially we thought we would be without power for several days and the car was blocked in the driveway (better than under the tree!). I gathered blankets and candles while Dingle brought in firewood and made calls to our electrician and insurance company. The force of the tree falling broke two telephone poles and ripped the electrical meter box off the side of our house.

I built a fire (shout out to my excellent dad for teaching me how to build a proper fire) and resumed the fetal position on the couch with Lily. Did I mention we were both really sick, ugh. It was about 4pm when the tree fell. It was dark by the time the power company and our electrician started working.  I always assumed that if the power went out we could still use our gas stove top, wrong...the stove has an a electric ignitor switch. Lily ate a cold hot dog, apple sauce, and a slice of peanut butter bread for dinner. Matt and I called for take out and Matt ran down the street to meet the delivery guy. Do I have a good man or what?!

The power company guys worked all night. Luckily our electrician finished up around 9. Eight hundred dollars later, the power box was back on the house and the power company estimated that we would have power by noon on Sunday.

Not a lot of sleep was had on Saturday night. For one, it was bright as day light and loud with the crew working just out our front door. Two, it was cold. Fireplace or not the house got down to about 53 degrees by 6am on Sunday. Dingle was able to drive the car out over the lawn on Sunday morning and came home with just what the doctor ordered...donuts and coffee!!

The power company made good on their promise and by noon on Sunday we had power again. Verizon on the other hand didn't get our phone, internet and TV hooked up again until Tuesday. It is nice to be back on the grid. When everything was said and done this was all that was left of tree...and even that was gone by Monday as if the whole thing had never happened.

And now the house looks naked!

Matt and I may never sleep past sunrise ever again. Looking at the above picture makes me sad.
We will definitely miss our lovely shade tree this summer. 

Saturday, February 18, 2012

And Bingo was his Name-o

Why is it so darn hard to name a second baby?!?

Everyone I have talked to about naming their second child has acknowledged that for some reason it seems much harder the second time around. Regardless of gender, living up to the amazing perfection of the name chosen for first born children, is a daunting task.

We started the name game as soon as we found out I was pregnant. Hours upon hours of conversation ensued. The conversation always went something like this:

April: "I want to use a family name for the middle name."
Matt: "Agreed."
April: "I don't want to use anything too popular."
Matt: "Me neither."
April: " It needs to have a nickname."
Matt: "Uh-huh."
April: "Nothing too cutesy, too trendy, or anything with a weird spelling."
Matt: "Sounds good."
April: "Nothing gender ambiguous."
Matt: "Definitely not."
April: "It has to sound good with Lily."
Matt: "Sure."

Given this brilliant list of criteria we chose a girl's name within a few days. Originally we agreed to keep said name a secret. When we chose Lily's name we told everyone right away, which sadly we regretted. I understand that sometimes people say the wrong thing or fail to hold their tongue but on more than one occasion people were flat out rude about our choice. It is NEVER okay to tell expecting parents who have already chosen a name that you don't like it! Trust me, they are not asking for your opinion. What they are doing is telling you a piece of personal information about themselves. If I said to you, "I love my freckles" would you say to me, "I hate freckles" or construct an argument as to why I should hate freckles? Probably not.

In any case when we found out that our little girl was not a little girl, Matt was dying to tell people our girl name. There is no guarantee that we will use it, or even like it by the time we could use it, but had this little one been a girl we would have named her Penelope Katherine. (You'll never guess what happened when we told people, sigh.)*

Turns out choosing the girl's name was a breeze compared to choosing a boy's name that we both loved. There were plenty of names that we both liked, there were a few names one or the other really liked, there were some awesome suggestions (Grover and Rudolph being our personal favorites) but nothing that we both LOVED as much as Lily Victoria. A few weekends ago we were in the car on the way to Maine when the name conversation started up. For the better part of an hour we dissected and scrutinized each name on our list until there was nothing left. Sort of out of the blue my husband made a new suggestion, a name we both LOVED but had some reservations about using. It became clear (to me anyway) as we exited the highway in our hometown that we had definitely chosen our name!!

I still have a very small nagging reservation about the name but there is absolutely nothing I can do about it and will just have to wait and see how it plays out. In any case we are so thrilled to have a name for our little boy! I had an u/s on Tuesday and the tech was able to confirm that we will not be needing Penelope this time. Little boy is measuring in the 96th percentile (gulp) but despite the fact that I feel like a planetary body  these days I am actually measuring small for 30 weeks (head on over to Bump Watch for the latest pictures). My OB seemed very confident that the baby probably has long arms and legs but that weight wise he is not a huge baby.

So there you have it. An entire blog post filled with action and suspense! Ten more weeks to go!

*Side note, if you are only reading this post because you think I am going to reveal our son's name you are going to be disappointed. Admittedly, we have told a handful of people...all of whom have since taken a vow of silence.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

A day in the life...

I'm not even going to apologize  :::hangs blogging head in shame:::

I wish I could say that we have been so busy doing fun and exciting things that I simply haven't had time to update the blog. Sadly, and as you probably guessed, we have not. For the past few weeks we have been going through the motions of our daily routine.

8:00am - Matt gets up with Lily (yes we know how CRAZY spoiled we are!)

8:30ish - Mommy lifts giant belly out of bed and makes way downstairs.

9:00am - Lily insists that everyone join her in the playroom after breakfast.

9:01-10:00am - Mommy gets roped into playing dollhouse. I am growing to despise this activity which consists of Mommy holding a doll (of Lily's choosing) and trying to guess what said doll would "like to do".

10:00ish - Lily's internal Elmo alarm goes off and she begins to request a snack in front of the TV for the last 30 minutes of Sesame Street. (She has zero interest in any other part of the show...just Elmo)

10:30am - Sid the Science Kid comes on following Sesame Street. In not my proudest mommy moment I allow my toddler to watch an additional 30 minutes of TV. Repeat after me, "It's education so that makes it okay!"

11:00am - Lily enthusiastically requests either a bath or a shower. On shower days I hop in there with her. On bath days my hygiene comes secondary. While in the bathroom we brush our teeth and Lily practices sitting on the potty. (She has yet to actually do anything on the potty. Once this week she peed on the floor next to the open potty, that's progress. Ha.)

12:00pm - By the time we are finished getting dressed etc it is usually around noon and we head downstairs for more dollhouse time! For the next 30 to 45 minutes I ask Lily every 5 minutes if she is hungry for lunch, because I am starving.

Lily requests the exact same thing for lunch Peanut butter bread and "yogurt with a spoon". On very exciting days (and honestly more often than not) Matt makes me something delicious for lunch like a BLT or bacon, egg, and cheese on a bagel. Otherwise I also eat a peanut butter sandwich.

1:30pm - Lily goes down for a nap. During this time I usually throw in a load of laundry and clean up for a few minutes before hunkering down on the couch to play words with friends and waste an hour of my life surfing the internet.

2:30pm - I head upstairs to "re-set" Lily. At this point she has been jumping in her crib for the past hour and needs a gentle reminder as to what she supposed to be doing. For the record she is almost never a terror during this time and she is sleepy, but ever since we took away her paci she has a hard time settling down to sleep.

2:30-2:40pm - These are a critical 10 minutes, if all is quiet then it means napping success! Otherwise jumping commences.

3:30 (never later than 4:00)pm - I head upstairs to fetch sleeping beauty. I know it may seem odd to put her in her crib an hour before I expect her to actually sleep, but if I wait until 2:30 the nap DOES NOT happen. Some days she needs some time to play and wind down, other days I don't here a peep from 1:30 to 3:30. Repeat after me, "Every day with a toddler is an adventure!"

4:00pm - Lily has taken to snuggling on the couch in the sunroom for about a half hour once she comes down from her nap. During this time we usually read books. If it weren't for the whining this would be my favorite time of the day ;) Occasionally there is light snacking.

4:30-5:30pm  - The witching hour. Most days it is impossible to be happy during this hour, Lily makes sure of that. Matt is usually fully immersed in work, which makes Lily irritated. I am tired of playing dollhouse, which makes Lily irate. Heaven forbid I get started on dinner. Lucky for me it is just an hour.

5:30pm - Lily sits down to dinner. Since she eats about 6 foods dinner usually consists of some combination of the following: noodles-sauce-and-cheese (said as one word, meat (hamburger) is also permitted), hot dog, applesauce, green pepper, cheese, green beans, chicken (ONLY in the form of a veggie chicken nugget), or frozen peas. Occasionally she will have pizza or request something out of the blue like lettuce.

6:00pm - Mommy and Daddy decide whether we are "eating or waiting". If I haven't started dinner while Lily is eating hers then the answer is often waiting. Although for the past few weeks we have been pretty good about cooking and consuming dinner by 6:30.

6:30-7:00pm - The best 30 minutes of the day!! Lily is in a fantastic mood. Matt is officially on a break from working and I don't have to play dollhouse!

7:00pm - Goodnight moon and goodnight Lily. Most nights she goes down without a peep and is sound asleep by 7:15.

Some days we change it up. Tuesdays for example we have music class followed by a playdate with Griffin. When it is warm enough (which for January happened almost too frequently) we go for a walk. We also hit up the library. Because Matt works from home most days I almost never have to take her with me to run errands which is awesome, except for when I do have to take her and she misbehaves because she isn't used to sitting in the shopping cart for an hour.

Today we are having an unexpected sick day. Lily woke up fine, ate slightly less than her usual breakfast, had a snack around 10:30 and by 12:30 had thrown it all up (all down the front of my hoodie). For the past several hours we have been laying in our bed cuddling our pathetic little girl while she dozes off and on. She smiled a few minutes ago and asked for some water so hopefully the worst is over.
Repeat after me, "Every day with a toddler is an adventure!"