My favorite animal

My favorite animal is the Sea Otter. So when I saw this, I had to share:


Picky eater in all the right ways

I think MLO is unusual in that she is a picky eater, but in all the right ways.

Meaning, she prefers some asparagus to toast. She would rather eat a bowl of sliced apples than a pizza.

Two nights ago I served a tuna pasta dish with a side of corn. She ate all the corn and all the tuna - leaving the pasta.

Yesterday for lunch I made her a peanut butter sandwich and myself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (the jelly has sugar in it). Usually MLO wants to eat part of my food - no matter what it is. She took a bite and then didn't want anymore, finishing her own sandwich.

I think I have been blessed (well I knew that already, but even more so).


Hubby and MLO eating dirt

My hubby hates it when MLO is playing in the yard and puts her dirty hand in her mouth.

One time he was on the phone but watching her in the backyard. I was in the kitchen making lunch (with a clear view of him through the backyard door but I couldn't see MLO).

I look up and he is frantically gesturing to me, pointing down to where I assume MLO is.

I run outside and she is happily playing in a flower pot, dirt everywhere and an occasional finger escaping to her mouth.

Every time the finger gets close my husband starts skipping around and pointing (while still saying "uhuh" to whoever is on the phone).

I laughed and told him not to worry about it - the dirt wouldn't hurt her and we had to let her experiment. If we just forbad it from the beginning we would have a worse time.

I got a frown and then he turned his back and continued talking to the person on the phone.

I bent down and played with MLO, making a face when she started putting her finger in her mouth. Not that I have cured her of her desire to eat dirt all together, she plays in it quite contentedly now without that finger straying too much anymore.



Sevta (I hope I spelled it right) is Hebrew for Grandma.

Well, MLO's Sevta visited yesterday and they had a great time. Sevta is a nature and outdoors person so MLO got to be outside all day with her (she gets a lot of outdoors time, but not all day usually).

I had accidently created MLO withdrawal in Sevta because it had been a month since she had seen her and Sevta really missed her (Sevta lives about half an hour away).

So I stepped into my office and did some extra work, letting them play alone.

Sevta taught her about bees (and how to say it), flowers and apparently we have a kumquat tree in our yard and the fruit is ripe. So they ate a bunch of those.

After the all day outside MLO fell asleep early and slept 12 hours straight - I appreciated that as well.

Planet Earth was great

Well I actually managed to catch two and half episodes (a whole bunch were playing on my Discovery HD station).

They were great!!!

There was a little too much hunting and killing for my taste - didn't like seeing those innocent looking creatures killed over and over again.

But then there were things like the dance of the Bird of Paradise which was very fascinating and beautiful (and never caught on camera before).

Also, Sigourney Weaver is narrating and I love her with her great voice, perfect for narrating.

I learned a lot about planet earth and now want to do more to help keep what natural places we have exactly that way.

So, if you have the Discovery channel - check them out, the shows are wonderful.


Planet Earth

Planet Earth a new 10-part show on the Discovery Channel is supposed to be great. I am going to check it out tonight and would recommend everyone do. Will let you know what I think afterwards.

Go to the TV Guide site to find out when it is showing in your area.


No more baby talk from us

MLO has proven she fully understands what you say to her, no matter how complicated you think it is.

Yesterday night she was carry a huge amount of things in her arms around the house. Every now and then she would drop one. She would try to pick it up and drop something else and so on. Eventually she would somehow get them all in her arms again and go on her marry way.

After watching her try this twice, when it happened a third time I told her "You can come back for it after you put everything else down." She stopped, looked at me and smiled. She promptly turned around, finished getting everything else to her room.

She then came running back, picked up the one stray item and ran it into her room.

She then came prancing out of her room (her chest pushed up and head held high) and I clapped for her.

She smiled huge and ran to me for a hug.

So, now I know that when she pretends not to understand me, she is doing just that - pretending.



Okay, so who doesn't like the brownies with at least one edge (I know there are few - but no one in my family). The middle ones go the slowest because they don't have the crunchy part.

Well guess what I just found a Labyrinthine brownie pan.

I think this is cool and will probably buy one :)

Note: Not paid for this


Work, work, work

Quick note:

Okay we are running like crazy.

MLO is growing so fast it is amazing to watch. I can't believe how big she looks and how she seems to be a little adult now.

We also just started escrow on our own house. I am soooooo happy.

Filing taxes...

Work is also totally busy and I was just at a conference.

I am beyond my eyeballs.


Normal - don't know if I believe this one...

You Are 65% Normal

Otherwise known as the normal amount of normal

You're like most people most of the time

But you've got those quirks that make you endearing

You're unique, yes... but not frighteningly so!

Great Birthday Weekend for Great Grandma

We had a great surprise birthday weekend for MLO's Great Grandma.

The whole family (my mom's three sisters and their spouses and kids) all meet at a wild reserve (called Safari West) and we surprised Great Grandma. You see, she travels around the world a lot and does all sort of adventurous things, but the one thing she decided she would never get to do (but wanted to) was an African Safari because her old bones couldn't take all the bouncing.

Well, this was her African Safari, when we announced it to her, she started crying.

We got a three hour Safari. MLO loved every minute of it because the animals really did come right up to the jeep. An ostrich actually came up to her and she got a little scared because it was interested in biting shinny objects. Hubby distracted it with a water bottle and then she got to watch it.

There were all sorts of animals and MLO's favorites were the zebras. When we went into the gift shop at the end of the weekend, she collected all the zebra items and handed them to me.

We also got to sleep on the reserve because they had cabins and tents there. We slept next to a bunch of lemurs that were very talkative during the night (but once we were asleep, we slept right through them).

Last surprise was after dinner on Saturday night (also on the reserve); every member of the family got up and did something that was a tribute to Great Grandma.

My mom and I did a presentation on her career in performing or behind the scenes work. Hubby played one of her favorite songs on his flute. My sister and two of my female cousins were the finale with a re-written Supremes song talking about Great Grandma. Needless to say we had a lot of grateful tears during the night.

MLO did a surprise performance when after it was all over she started dancing away to the background music. Everyone joined in and she was in the center of the circle with people dancing around her. It was great and we were all laughing as we went off to bed.

Overall a fabulous weekend and great success!!!


Long road trip

We are getting ready for our long road trip up North.

Someone asked today why we don't just fly - it is funny, but having driven everywhere since I was small I don't even think of it as an option.

This person went on and on about letting their little one run in the aisles while she read her book. The stewardess and the other passengers keeping her son occupied the whole time.

Well, too late for this trip - but next time we will probably fly.

See everyone on the other side of the weekend :)


Having conversations with MLO

So MLO has gathered up a good collection of single words now.

It is funny to have an actual conversation with her because she uses her baby talk and then throws in a regular word here and there.

Last night she was sitting on the couch and pointing at the shelf where the movies are (and on a lower shelf, some of her books with regular paper pages).

We were talking and she would "gubby, gabby, tis, tis, book" and I would smile and say "yeah".

Then she would "buppp hafff gesss" for a little while and then "itttt toes" and I would try really hard not to laugh and just say "ok". She would point to her toes and then look for mine (which I was sitting on, so I swung a foot out).

Then she kept going "arrrr geeee theeeee gubby nose" and just kept going.

I was giggling about ten minutes into it and she, loving to make people laugh, had a huge smile on her face and just kept going.

I think our conversation lasted about twenty minutes and boy was it one of the best I have had.


Happy birthday great grandma

MLO's great grandma is turning 80 today.


We will be seeing you this weekend for your surprise :)

Dislocated shoulder or "nursemaid's elbow"

Another inspired blog from what I have been reading by all the new friends I am making in the blog world.

When MLO was about 13 months old something happened and it took forever to figure out what was wrong.

She started crying all the time, didn't want to move and do anything. She didn't feel feverous or look sick, just something was in pain. It was late at night when it happened and we called our doctor. She said to see if it got better in the morning.

That night was awful, I finally got her to fall asleep on me (I was on the couch) laying on her side. If I moved at all, she would wake up and scream in pain again.

In the morning I noticed that she didn't move one of her arms. It just hung limp by her side and if you touched the arm she would scream. If you didn't get anywhere near it, she was as happy as a clam.

So we took her to the doctor (it actually wasn't our doctor because she was with her newborn baby herself, it was her stand in). He looked at her and said that her shoulder was dislocated and we would have to take her to the emergency room and sedate her so they could put it back.

I was in absolute tears and freaking out (I know this doesn't compare to what some people have gone through, but this was the worst thing that had happened to my otherwise very healthy little girl).

My hubby was skeptical and since we aren't very fond of the whole sedation thing (though would do it in a second if it is really what is needed) he wanted to get a second opinion. He called our friend who also is a chiropractor and we explained what was happening.

He said to bring MLO to him right away as it didn't sound like a dislocated shoulder, but in fact what is called "nursemaid's elbow" (search around, a lot of information on the Internet regarding this).

I arrived at his office and he squeezed us in to his booked day. He had to put her elbow back in place which wasn't the easiest thing in the world (my goodness - I have never cried so much without my own physical pain being felt).

It took three tries, but suddenly she was moving her arm (I tricked her into reach out to a flower) and she was totally back to normal.

Needless to say, that friend got one of the biggest hugs I have ever delivered.

We went home and we never had a problem in that regard again.

Guess the moral here is that as a mom (or dad) go with your gut. Seek the right advice and listen to what the professionals say, but you will know when it is right.


Grandpa is happy

MLO has always been a little scared of grandpa (my dad). She doesn't get to see him much (he is very sick) and he is a big man with a pot belly and a scruffy beard.

However we had him and my big bro (he is my half brother from my dad's first marriage and is currently living with my dad and taking care of him) over this weekend.

At first she was being all cutesy shy and wouldn't leave my arms. My big bro said I had something growing out of my cheek, because MLO decided that if she had her cheek pressed up to mine very firmly she was safe.

Well, after about half an hour - it all disappeared. MLO and grandpa were having a great time drawing on her Aqua Doodle (a great toy by the way) and reading her books and so on.

While she didn't commit to sitting in his lap, she would sit next to him.

I don't think I have ever seen such a happy, silly grin on my father's face. It was enough to lighten an otherwise crazy weekend.


Home birth

After reading a lot of other's people's blog in the blog party (link here), I got inspired to write about the birth of my daughter.

It isn't bad - it all went VERY well. The best part was I had MLO at home with a midwife. The story goes:

I was two weeks overdue and went to a doctor to have an ultrasound done to check on the baby. MLO seemed fine, but there was almost no amniotic fluid (I had sprung a small leak).

They hooked me up to a fetal monitor and said I was already having very small contractions (I couldn't even feel them). The best news was the baby's heart beat was fine and she didn't seem to be in any distress.

Nevertheless the doctor was worried and said I needed to go to the hospital right away and induce the baby with drugs.

I told her I didn't want to take any drugs and made a deal with her that if by the next morning I hadn't had the baby I would go to the hospital. The doctor reluctantly agreed.

So I called the midwife (admittedly a little freaked out) and she came over to my house. I still didn't feel any contractions or anything and the midwife gave me a laxative to clear me out and some herbs.

Around midnight I started with minor contractions (at least I could feel them). For those who don't know, the first baby is supposed to take the longest to be born, labor can last hours (if not over a day).

Well, to make a long story short - MLO was born at 5am. Perfectly healthy, not a single thing wrong with her. The labor, though a lot of work and very tiring, went smoothly. I required one stitch (which my midwife could do because she was also a registered nurse) and then MLO and I got to enjoy each other.

The only funny thing of note, is that the midwife was almost late for the birth. She thought I had a bunch more hours (since I hadn't been in labor for that long) and came by only after my hubby convinced her to at least check on me.

This is a plug for home birth. It was the most comfortable thing in the world, not a single problem. I didn't have to check in anywhere or check out. I was in my own bed with MLO and we were waited on hand and foot by my hubby, my mom and my sister.

Also everyone got to be there (I lost all modesty and didn't care) and see MLO arrive into this world for which they were very happy.

My only advice was pick your midwife well. I interviewed many of them and one thing I definitely recommend is that the midwife have a medical background (like the one I picked was a registered nurse, she is Leslie Stewart at Home Birth Service) so they really do know what they are talking about.


The "mommy factor"

So last night MLO, myself, my mom and an old family friend went out to dinner.

We went to a place that my mom had taken MLO once when she was watching her. She claimed MLO had been a perfect angel the entire time they were there - sat in her seat and ate lots of food.

Well, tonight she wasn't a perfect angel. Not that she went all out and screamed and cried. But she had to get out of the chair and sit in my lap. She really wanted to walk around the restaurant say "hi" to the other people there (something she loves to do, especially when she gets smiles back).

My mom (grandma) was confused as to why, in the same place as before, MLO would act so different.

Well, it would be the "mommy factor".

I have decided that MLO has a computation she does in her head as to how she is going to behave. The "mommy factor" is an important part of this computation.

When mommy is around, this means a little more adventure, a little more motion, a little more excitement. When mommy isn't around, well she is a pleasant little girl out for an evening with the grown ups.

I haven't decide whether to be honored or annoyed.


MLO's new stool

So MLO has gotten more and more independent. She wants to do things herself like a big girl and gets VERY frustrated when she can't.

So I bought her a little two step stool and have it bungee corded to her chair with the booster seat so she can get up and down it (having been the most recent point of upset for her).

Well, currently it is the new toy and she spends a lot of time going up and down, up and down. She has fallen twice (both times with me close and no major injuries) and is starting to get the hang of it.

Of course, this makes dinner time fun.

If I take away the stool to try and get her to stay in her seat, boy do I hear about it.

If I leave it there she goes up and down several times during the course of the meal.

So, did I make a big mistake getting the stool for her? Should I retire it or wait until she gets over the "newness" of it and learns what it is for?


Just because it could be fun

I am sort of an Internet hermit. I do a lot of lurking and only have a few blogs that I regularly particpate in.

But this looked like fun so come join the party :)

Update: So it looks like most of you talk a little about yourself on your posts so I thought I would add more.

My hubby and I were married for eight years before starting our family and I am so happy we waited but even happier that we started now :). I am 28 years old and my little one (MLO) is 18 months old. I was born and raised and still live in California (though I have lived in many different parts from North to South).

Weekend was great

So the birthday weekend went great.

Of course the restaurant, Houston's, that I knew my mom wanted to go to doesn't take reservations for parties larger than four so we had to wait (the main reason we haven't all gone there before).

The wait ended up being 1 1/2 (I live in Los Angeles so not that surprising). However it flew by, mostly because MLO kept everyone entertained the whole time.

Houston's has a fish pond out in front and MLO loved looking at the fish and exclaiming over and over "ish", much to everyone's enjoyment.

After she got tired of that, she would want to walk around, and different people would take turns walking with her. She would go for a walk and then run back to the pond and yell "ish".

So, when we were finally up, we were all starving, but didn't feel like the time had dragged out.

And for all the waiting, the filet mignon was fabulous. Even MLO could eat it because it melted in your mouth.

My mom was very happy and has already thanked us three times for taking her there. Said she had one of the best birthday weekends ever.

Not too shabby :)


Going into the weekend

I usually don't manage to post over the weekend. Spend that time with my family or doing all those errands you just can't do during the week.

This weekend will be even more exciting because it is my mom's birthday and we have a nice dinner and little get together planned.

So, hope everyone has a great time this weekend and if you need something silly and a little nerdy to look at, click here.


Back to MLO

Sorry about the rant yesterday - usually I focus this on MLO and family stuff, but just got a little bugged.

So back to cute stuff:

Last night hubby made extra effort to tell everyone else to go away so he could spend time with his family. It was great and MLO practically dragged him all around the house, all night long and they played together.

We had dinner (which the booster seat is still going strong) of chicken (with an experimental marinade on it - turned out okay) and soup. Of which MLO ate almost as much as me again.

Three years ago I would have told you I didn't know how to cook. Hubby and I went out a lot and I cooked just really basic stuff. There is something about having a baby which made me into a cook. I want to be sure of the food she is eating and make sure it is healthy and the best way to do that is to prepare it myself.

So now I would say I can cook (though out of necessity and I won't say I am GREAT at it).

Speaking of MLO eating up a storm, I had to go through her clothes and pull out all the pants that had turned into shorts. I buy more pants for this girl than I can keep track off.

I have a friend who is pregnant again (her second - with her first being 18 months old and a boy) and she wants it to be a girl so I am keeping all the clothes for her just in case.

Well this post went all over the place - sorry :)