Tuesday, April 29, 2008

You're welcome to leave nasty comments about my parenting below

The fire alarm went off at 12:30 a.m. today, reminding me of the last time that ungodly noise ripped through our hallway and into our apartment, waking us up in the middle of the night and causing one real dilemma: we had to wake our sleeping child.

Only a parent of a child who had difficulty sleeping through the night for the entire first year of his life will understand why the number one thought on our minds was not the fact that our apartment, which holds every single item we own, might be incinerated in a matter of moments. Or that we might have to hoist our little Ethan out of our second-story window with bedsheets if the fire got out of hand. No, the most important question was whether or not we dared wake the child and risk staying up the rest of the night with him.

Last time we decided to take him out to see those firetrucks - mainly because there were trace amounts of smoke in the hallway.

Last night, however, was a different story. At the sound of the alarm, I jumped out of bed, pulled some clothes and shoes on, grabbed my phone and walked out the door, leaving my son and husband slumbering in their beds. After joining the rest of the pajama-clad residents in the street, one of my neighbors gawked at me when I told her I had left my child inside. I called Ryan to tell him there was no smoke billowing out of the windows. He hung up on me.

The firetrucks arrived and after sauntering in and out of the building for a few minutes the firefighters told us to go back to our apartments and go to sleep. Only we couldn't, because they had difficulty turning the alarm off. Amazingly (and sort of ironically), Ethan slept through all the ringing. And when I finally did get under my covers, I was glad I didn't wake him up.

Throughout today though, I have wondered if I was being cavalier with my son's life for a little extra sleep. What would you have done?

Friday, April 25, 2008

Jazz addiction

Does anyone else have to pick their husband back up after a Utah Jazz loss? Mine was threatening to stay home from work today and decided not to shave.

photo: SL Tribune

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Watch out Christie's, here we come

This week I was enlisted by my sister - a Utah resident - to drive to Elkridge, Md. to participate in a live bid auction for a natural gas burning Chevy Cavalier. Purchase of said vehicle was super important because, in her words, "there is a ton of natural gas here out West and so you can get them a lot cheaper in the East," and "natural gas is like 63 cents per gallon." Her husband has finals and she was threatening to wean her baby and fly out here herself if I didn't do this for her. "But," they told me, "don't feel too much pressure." They were only asking me to get a winning bid among veteran bidders and spend all of their money on a car that they had never laid eyes on.

And though their request put me under complete mental duress for much of the week (I still love you guys), I agreed to dig up all the courage I could find in my shy self and go up there and bid my little heart out.

Because no children are allowed near the auction, I dragged my dear friend Shane and her daughter Emma along to take care of Ethan and give me some much-needed moral support. Thanks Shane, you are awesome.

My spending limit was $6,000, but my sister asked me to try not to go over $4,000 as these cars blue-booked at $3,500. I was pretty sure that it wouldn't be too hard to get a low price on a Chevy Cavalier. I was so wrong.

As I checked out the 15-or-so CNG Cavaliers up for sale before the auction, I noticed that the other people (almost all men) inspecting the vehicles were looking at the very same cars as I was. I met several people who flew out from Cache Valley, Utah just for the CNG cars and I'm guessing they heard about the auction from the same person my sister did.

The auction began with two loud auctioneers simultaneously spitting burning numbers off their tongues. The first car was a 2001 Cavalier with only 7,000 miles on it. I was ready to bid and I about raised my hand, then realized that the price had shot up to $7,000 before I could decipher what the large crimson-faced auctioneer was yelling. The first car sold for $9,900. I soon learned that that would be the least expensive Cavalier sold that day, with one sold for $13,500 - nearly four times the blue book price. They are so hot right now. :)

After getting caught up in all the excitement I was quite disappointed to leave the auction without bidding a single time! But I ended up enjoying the auction process. Now I'm considering a career in buying and selling. ;)My competition.
E-man and little genius known as "Mookie" (short for Muqtada al Sadr).I should have bought them this for putting me through all of this stress.

Formerly blonde FBI agent turned auburn-coifed mommy Shane.

Lowest bidder and Super Mommy (right, Shane?). Sorry about the too-close-for-comfort squeeze shot.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Funny boy

Here are some things Ethan has been up to lately:
- He throws everything.
- He constantly reorganizes Ryan's closet.
- When I offer to give him a hand and help him walk, he slaps it and says, "No."
- Today he said "boo" to his foot as he pulled it through his pant-leg opening.
- He immediately grabbed a wet-wipe that I dropped this afternoon and started cleaning the very dirty kitchen floor with it.
- He relaxed on the couch for nearly an hour just watching Ryan play Wii.
- He gives us "loves" every chance he gets and we end up covered in slobber.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Here is evidence of Ethan's evolution into bipedalism.

Next to walking, Ethan's favorite new activity is standing on his feet and looking between his legs. Enjoy his rolls while they last (we're hoping they go away before he reaches the sixth grade).

Sunday, April 13, 2008


For the last few months I have been imagining how it will be when Ethan takes his first steps. Well today it happened. He took six or seven steps at a time from me to Ryan and back several times. It was so cool!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Night with the Nats

One of Ryan's awesome co-workers let us use her Nationals tickets Friday. They were great seats in a brand new ball park. Despite a loss to the Braves, it was still so much fun. Here are some of the highlights:

* Getting photos with Honest Abe and General Washington.
* Discovering that Ethan likes Washington and hates Lincoln.
* Watching the presidents race (my favorite part of Nats games).
* Downing humongous Coke floats.
* Observing the people around us pay $7 each for bottles upon bottles of beer.
* Waiting in line to use the "family bathroom" (with international symbols of woman, man and baby WITH A DIAPER ON just outside) only to find a large single bathroom without a changing table.
* Sitting in the same seat with a 14-month-old.
* Enjoying the beautiful weather - overcast and in the 70s.
* Loving the post-game fireworks show.
* Feeling a large man's belly in my back on a cramped Metro ride home.
* Finally getting Ethan to bed at 11 p.m.!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Almost there

Everyone has a story of a baby they have had or that they know who didn't walk until he/she was 14-20 months old. And they always tell me that story after I explain to them that my 14-month-old isn't walking yet.

I know, I really shouldn't mention the fact that despite all of Ethan's extremely athletic genes ;-) (stop thinking about my inability to play sports) he still isn't walking. And I know right this minute you are all thinking of how I shouldn't be discouraged and lose all hope of future Olympic glory.

But seriously, I kind of feel like I need to constantly mention the fact that my toddler is still a quadruped because I guess I'm a little insecure about it. So when progress happens, I'm going to let everyone in on it.

Ethan now stands up for several seconds at a time without holding on to anything! I keep trying to catch it on video and he decides to do something else by the time I finally get my camera out. Here is the tail end of one of Ethan's no-hands moments. I wish you could have seen the whole thing. We are so proud of him and just pray one day he'll decide to take a step alone.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Life of Ryan: take two

Today is Ryan's 26th birthday! In honor of his special day I have decided to let you know more about the man we affectionately call Ryno:

* Ryan LOVES country music, especially the classic, 90s country music. This is why I keep having to skip over songs by Travis Tritt and Keith Whitley on my ipod.

* He often "retires" certain dishes that I choose to make often for dinner. If you ever feel a craving for chicken roll-ups or Parmesan chicken, don't come knocking on our door because I am not allowed to make them - ever again. ;-)

* He is the fastest ten-keyer in the commonwealth of Virginia (so they've never actually had a ten-key competition, but if they did, Ryan would win it).

* He is an accountant, but I recently found out he is also a great writer. Very well-rounded.

* He thinks he could run a marathon without training a day.

* He received every grown-man's dream gift this morning when he opened the Wii that I finally found - thanks to my sister - after searching for months for one.

* He has no free time to play his Wii. He works until 4:30 p.m., eats dinner, goes to class or studies at 6 p.m., then comes home or finishes studying at 10 p.m.

* He would much rather watch a Jazz game on the television than go to a party.

* He acts like he doesn't remember how to play Runs and Bunches every time we play, then he always goes on to win it.

* He always wants to be the one to get Ethan when he wakes up in the morning.

* He tells the funniest stories when he gets home from work every day. I always look forward to hearing them.

* He often has dilemmas with his hair and recently said that he can't wait until he goes bald (thanks to his brothers, we know it will happen sometime soon). I bet I'm the first and last wife to hear that.

Ethan says Happy Birthday Dad!