Thursday, November 29, 2007

Boob Tube

I grew up in a house where television was referred to as the Boob Tube. (Think that's strange? What about washcloths being called "rags" and hair conditioner called "cream rinse"? Let's just say my mom had a unique sense of vocabulary.) Since I've become a regular boob tube for Miss Claire (in the literal sense), I've been hooked up to the Boob Tube a lot myself lately. I'm ashamed to admit how much t.v. I watch these days. Here's a list:

The Shot (This is a new one for me, a fashion photography competition that I really enjoy.)
Grey's Anatomy (The evening soap opera that everyone watches, admit it.)
Private Practice (I'm not exactly convinced by the acting, but could Dr. Pete be hotter? I mean, really.)
The Office (I used to refuse to watch the American version because the BBC version was perfection on a stick, but I've totally come around and love it.)
Project Runway (Turn the gay knob up, folks. I just love this show. And, whoa, Jack looks like Superman, or at least the way Superman should look.)
30 Rock (Another one I wasn't interested in at first, but now find rather amusing. My favorite character? Kenneth the Page.)
Heroes (We finished the first season, so now the current one makes more sense. The first season was definitely better. And is it just me or is the Mexican chick who kills people with her black tears totally annoying?)
SNL (It's really hit or miss on the funny factor anymore, but I still support it.)

On Netflix:
The Wire (We're working on season two now, but I can say that season one was full of great acting and made the viewer rethink their prejudices and stereotypes towards drug dealing and poverty.)

My favorite series of all time? Six Feet Under. Fabulous writing, acting, and cinematography. The characters were all believable with depth, complexity, and humanity. I truly got attached to them as if I knew them and I miss them. Seriously. I loved this show. And Claire was actually a name that we got from it.

Now, make me feel better, and admit how much t.v. you watch too. Thanks.

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 12:54 PM

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


For the life of me I can't figure out what to post lately. I want to entertain you, make you laugh, piss you off, or whatever it takes to get a reaction out of you, but I simply don't have the time or energy. Sorry.

I must have been raised Catholic (and not know about it) or something. I just feel so darn guilty for not doing anything for Huz's birthday yesterday. Usually I'm all over birthdays or anniversaries. I buy gifts, make cards, throw parties, and sometimes even do treasure hunts. This year? I did absolutely nothing for Huz. I was at home with the baby while he went to class, stayed in my pjs until about 1:30p.m. when he got back, and did nada for him. I feel so bad. He says he doesn't care, that he got the best gift ever this year, but I still feel like a jerk. One thing we decided to get back too, though, is the practical gift practice. What's this you ask? It's just what it sounds like. We have things we need/want as a household and family anyway, so why not buy these things for each other? We decided to do just that for his birthday. Tired of having homes (always rented homes before where we couldn't do anything about it anyway) with old, greasy, hot-spot-laden ovens, we decided to buy a new one for his (and my, albeit in February) birthday. Practical, useful, and appreciated. It will be delivered on December 10th (which happens to be our 13th wedding anniversary), giving Huz enough time to tackle the next big house project: tiling the kitchen floor. Eventually we'll get a new counter too because, um, I don't know if you know this, but I hate laminate. Especially shitty blue marble kind that looks like it's from the 50s.

Claire update:

She's doing well - seems to be growing every day. Her hands seem huge to me and her cheeks, if you can believe it, are rounder. She fusses a lot and we use the pacifier a lot. Some people criticize this method, but it's about survival, people. S.u.r.v.i.v.a.l. She's not colicky, but definitely screams if she's unhappy. We always go down the list: hungry? dirty diaper? hot? cold? bored? needs to be cuddled? tired? In the end, if all of these needs are met, there's nothing to do but stick a cork in it and hold her. She can go from zero to sixty in seconds. I kid you not.

One second:


One second later:


She's also a Houdini, just like Cambridge. We borrowed a baby straight jacket, oh, sorry, a Miracle Blanket, from a friend and she can bust her hand out of it like no tomorrow. This is after you strap her arms down to her sides, pull the foot part up, the right flap over, and then the really long left flap. She's a wiggle worm, this kid.


We have lots of turkey leftovers from a kick ass bird Huz made again this year. Any recipe ideas?

Also, I'm so sick of our toaster setting the fire alarm off. No, we have not replaced it from way back when it first broke. Any good quality, long-lasting, great toasting machines you can recommend? Seriously. We go through toasters like nobody's business around here and it's driving me crazy.

I need to start reading novels again. You know, books written by adults for adults. Not just books about breastfeeding, baby acne, and the like. I'm going to start with the newest Murakami. I like him and his surreal worlds he creates.

I have my six week postpartum appointment next week. I'm calling it the "Can We Do It Yet" appointment. We'll see, though I have to admit that it sounds rather frightening to me.

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 10:09 AM

Monday, November 26, 2007

Happy Birthday, Huz!

To my best friend, lover, and partner in crime:

Happy birthday, darling! You're simply the best!

I like your idea of throwing a raging One-Third of a Century party, so let's plan on it. Get ready for March 26th, 2008 y'all! Woot, woot!



Posted by Bird On A Line @ 4:50 PM

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Smart Ass

I thought I was being so clever this morning, but I was woefully wrong. I hate it when that happens!

Me: It's a sickness, I know.

Huz: What?

Me: How much I love Peanut Butter Bumpers. As I was still lying in bed, I heard you pour yourself a bowl and I knew it was my cereal by how it hit the bowl.

Huz: Um, it's a sickness alright, but I had Frosted Mini Wheats.

Me: ...

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 12:20 PM

Thursday, November 22, 2007

So Thankful

I think it's stating the obvious that I have many things to be thankful for this year.

First, I have a great husband who is my best friend and confidant; he loves me, supports me, and thinks I'm beautiful. A girl can't ask for more than that. Here's to our many wonderful years together.

From our first prom (1992):

prom 1992

To our wedding day (1994):


To buying (and renovating) our first home together (January 2007):

The Hotness of Home Renovation

To making a family together (October 2007):


On top of all that, he's a loving, committed father. Thank you Huz for all that you are to me and Claire.


I'm thankful.

For my new family:


For my adorable baby girl:


For her tiny feet:



And for my feet, which received a pedicure last night:


Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 12:30 PM

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Happy First Month Birthday Claire Bear!

I left you all on a frenzied note last, but wanted you to know that I'm better now. Saturday went pretty well - no spilled limeades or potty experiences, thankyouverymuch. I went to the mall with a girlfriend, breastfed in public (!!), changed her* diaper in the changing area of a family restroom (!!), and came home exhausted. I was emotional that evening because of fatigue and missing Huz, but he came home safe and sound Sunday night and all is well. I learned that I can do it by myself if I have to (I just don't want to). So that's a good lesson to learn.

*Claire's diaper, that is, not my girlfriend's.

We celebrated Claire's one month birthday today by going out for breakfast at Marches. I enjoyed a Bellini and french toast while Huz had crepes with pumpkin, herbs, and leeks. Claire was an angel and let us eat without fussing. Thanks Claire! I dressed her up for the occasion - isn't she cute (you know you have to say yes even if you don't think so).

One Month Old

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 1:20 PM

Saturday, November 17, 2007

On Being Alone

Let me just say that I do not want to be a single parent. Ever. For those of you who are? My hat is so off to you.

I survived my first day and night alone, but it wasn't easy. I know it's because I'm such a novice, but I notice that when I am on my own with Claire (and not at home), there's an underlying sense of panic within me. I fear her screaming in public and me not being able to do the right thing to make her calm down. I fear being "that woman with the bratty kid" and everyone making a wide circle around me to avoid me and the ticking time bomb that is my precious little girl. She's definitely a fusser lately and seems to want to be held constantly. As you can imagine, this gets really tiring and draining, especially when I'm by myself.

On to my two horror stories from yesterday (I know "horror" is a bit exaggerated, but still):

1. After dropping Huz off at the airport I decided I was starving (it was 1:00) and stopped at Sonic which is about 5 minutes from home. Claire was still sleeping in the car seat, so I thought getting an order to go would be no problem. Well, as soon as I turned off the car, she started to scream. I had no choice but to take her out of the car seat (which makes her scream even more) and feed her (it had been 2 hours or so, so she was legitimately hungry). I used the nursing cover in the front seat and my food order arrived. I put the cherry limeade in the cup holder and placed the bag of food on the floor, waiting for Claire to finish lunch before I drove home to eat mine. I was really thirsty (breastfeeding does that to a girl) and picked up my limeade for a taste. There was a key in the bottom of the cup holder that pierced right through the Styrofoam cup, causing it to pour out like a fountain everywhere and immediately fill the cup holder and the one next to it with the drink I so longed for. What a disgusting, sticky mess and here I am breastfeeding in a cramped car, starving, and thirsty as hell. I reached out and rang the bell to ask for another cup and lots of napkins, but they never came out to help me. I finally popped Claire off and put her back in the car seat and drove home with a sea of pink liquid sloshing just to my right and a ear-splitting, screaming baby in the back. That was NOT FUN.

2. My body has been acting up lately - must be the trauma of pregnancy-induced intestine rearrangement finally catching up to me or something. I went from the extreme of not being able to go at all to flood gates, if you get my drift. And, of course, this has to happen when Huz is gone and when Claire just wakes up screaming for dinner. So I did what any desperate mother would do, I nursed Claire while sitting on the potty. Lovely, ain't it? Ugh.


Posted by Bird On A Line @ 9:54 AM

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Pleasing My Audience

Okay, I can't post without putting up a picture of Claire Bear, huh? Fine. What am I, chopped liver?

Here she is in her very Amish-looking bonnet her Grandma got her. Huz rolls his eyes whenever I put it on her and I crack up hysterically. Poor kid.

Amish Baby and the MamaAmish Baby

Here's Huz wearing the Baby Bjorn. Hotness.

Huz and the Baby Bjorn

Here are the fur kids and the very Hitchcockian scene outside this afternoon.

Hithcock Would Be Proud

Claire's latest trick? Not sleeping a wink unless she's being held or attached to one of our bodies in a sling. Good times. (Thankfully this has been during the days and not the nights - here's hoping that doesn't change.)

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 4:28 PM

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The Three C's


Yesterday was rough around here. I think Claire is going through a growth spurt (already!?) or something because she was inconsolable all day unless she was on the boob every.stinking.hour. Do you know how much boob time that is? A LOT. I seriously was attached to the kid all day long. Thankfully she switched to every two hours overnight, but STILL. I hope today is better, but most books I've read say growth spurts (and the ravenous feedings that go along with them) last 48 hours. Oy vey.

We had another big day of firsts on Monday. We went downtown with Huz and dropped him off at school and then Claire and I went (me! driving! alone with her in the back!) to the new Whole Foods that just opened in Nashville. I put her in the Baby Bjorn (for the first time - took a while - I'm such a novice) and walked around the store for a bit. I bought myself a cute little teapot for times of relaxing (between boob times, I guess) and got lots of oohs and aahs over Claire Bear (I get offended if I don't!). Then I nursed her in the car (hadn't received my nursing cover yet, but got it yesterday. Must try it out!) and picked up Huz. We went to lunch together and then to the movies. I was immensely worried about how loud the previews were so I covered her ears the entire time, but thankfully we chose a relatively quiet movie (i.e., not a war movie) and had a good time because she slept through it and it was a good film to boot. We changed her diaper on the floor after the movie (Um, hello? Movie theater? Why don't you have a changing station in the freaking bathroom?) and then went home. That's when the demand for the boob every hour started. Either she was traumatized from our big day out or it's a growth spurt. I'm going with the later, which makes me sad. Her hands and feet already look bigger to me. She's so stinkin' cute that I don't want her to grow, but I guess with growth comes more independence and less boob time needed, which, I must say, sounds like a good thing.


After that post in which I shared my desire to murder Neville, we decided we couldn't take the cat-induced sleep disruptions any more. No, we didn't kill him, nor did we get rid of him. Instead, we have allowed the fur kids back into the bedroom and have finagled the crib tent (which doesn't work on the crib anyway, or at least it doesn't keep our Houdini Cambridge out) over the bassinet, making it impossible for them to disturb her. I have to say, the nights have been much better since we did this.


I briefly posted a request for romance movie ideas yesterday (then deleted it because I found some Sundance Film Festival movies on NetFlix) because Huz is leaving me this weekend for sunny San Diego (Jealous much? Yes I am, but not because it's San Diego. No, at this point I'm jealous that he gets to go to a quiet hotel and SLEEP, like, ALL NIGHT LONG. No fair!!). I hate the term "Chick Flick" but I guess that's what I want - something I want to see that Huz won't roll his eyes over. We really have similar taste in movies though (with the exception of all his boring Russian and Japanese film fetishes), so the typical romance isn't really on my radar anyway. I want to see well-acted, thoughtful films where the subject matter isn't necessarily uber serious. That's all. These are the ones I added to the queue - I hope they're good (and that Claire and I have an uneventful, turbulence-free weekend on our own!). YIKES!

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 8:54 AM

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Claire's life is full of first-time events, as you'd expect. Here's a few of the latest:

On her 15th day the umbilical cord fell off. I was both proud (as if she had anything to do with it) and sad that the lifeline that went from me to her for so long was officially gone.

On her 20th day she started to get the classic baby acne.

Hi, my name is Claire and my mom gave me zits.

Hi, My Name is Claire and I Have Baby Acne

I told her it's only fair that my hormones (which are slowly getting out of her system) gave her acne because she gave me acne when she was inside of me.

On her 21st day she got her first tub bath. It looks like it went fine, but this was the first 30 seconds; after that, it kind of went down hill. We'll see if next time goes any better.

First Tub BathFirst Tub Bath

On her 22nd day (today) she drank breast milk from a bottle for the first time. I think her daddy was more than happy to have this moment with her.

The first bottle feedThe first bottle feed

Then she had her first tummy time experience.

Tummy Time With DaddyTummy Time With DaddyCute butt

The kerchief was daddy's idea. She's like the baby version of The Boss.

Cute butt with a kerchief

Cambridge decided to get in on the tummy time action. She's that upside down blur on the right.

Cambridge going crazy during tummy time

Oh, and I had a first yesterday too. I left the house without my baby for the first time in 3 weeks. It was only to go to the grocery and liquor stores (For some wine! That I can finally drink! Yes, it's in moderation. Chill out breastfeeding Nazis.). I was gone probably 45 minutes and I called home once to check on Claire and Huz, but they were fine (she was in the middle of her long afternoon nap which she's being very stubborn about taking today).

The end.

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 1:28 PM

Friday, November 9, 2007


My current addiction?

Her adorably tiny feet!


Posted by Bird On A Line @ 4:10 PM

Good Day, Rough Night (aka Problem Children)

Yesterday was good. Claire was quiet most of the day - awake and content mixed equally with content napping. Huz and I went to the mall to get me out of the house and to do some shopping. Yes, I can fit into my size 6 jeans, but I only have one pair of size 6 jeans. All those sexy size 4s? What was I thinking? I can't get into any of those babies. So, it was to the mall for me to get 2 more pairs of pants I can comfortably wear right now. Huz got some sexy dress shoes to wear with his suit next weekend - he's presenting a paper at AAR (in San Diego - no fair, I want to go!) and will be leaving me on my own (holy shit) to do the parenting thing for 2 nights. Pray for me. It was a brief, but fun outing and we need to do more of them together. We knew Claire had a wet diaper (or so we guessed) but I was too afraid to use the nasty changing table in the women's restroom, so we brought her out to the car (our Saturn is WAY too small and I currently hate it) and I nursed her and then we changed her together in the front seat (Huz hanging on to her because the seats are at an angle and me wrestling with the cloth diaper and cover - kind of a pain, but we're getting used to it). Then we had a quiet evening at home watching our usual Thursday t.v. - 30 Rock, The Office, and Grey's Anatomy.

Then bedtime came. Claire wasn't screaming, thank God, but after sleeping from 10:30 - 2:30 (which was great) she was wide awake and needing her pacifier stuck back into her mouth a million times for TWO STRAIGHT HOURS. Finally, at 4:30, she fell asleep and we had a glorious 30 minutes of sleep before the needy, little shit head who I want to throw outside for wild dogs to eat Neville started his desperate attempts to get into the bedroom. This entails him sticking his entire arm under our door (there is WAY too much space beneath our doors) and wrestling with it, slamming it back and forth in the door jam, which sounds like a freaking army battling to get in the door. Needless to say, this woke Huz and I up with a start. Thankfully Claire sleeps through this racket, but it is SO loud and then he starts meowing like crazy and he JUST.WON'T.STOP. No matter how many times we get up and spray him in the face with water, he doesn't stop. Finally at 5:00 I got up and slept on the couch because, it seems, that if one human family member is out in the rest of the house with him, he quits body slamming the bedroom door. Claire was up and needed to be fed again at 6:30, so that was only an hour and a half more sleep for me. Then she (and I) slept from 7:00 - 9:00 and during the 25 minutes I was feeding her at 9:00, Neville was at the door again. I was seriously this close to kicking his gray ass outside and being done with him. I love him and he's sweet and cute, but this is getting ridiculous. I'm hoping that once we transition Claire to her crib in the nursery that it'll stop because we'll let the cats back into the bedroom with us, but I don't know when that will be and I don't know if I'm going to make it until then without killing him. UGH!

p.s. This is the nursing cover I ordered yesterday (in Chocolat). I can't wait to try it out!

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 10:58 AM

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Cabin Fever

Okay, I think I've officially got cabin fever. Transitioning straight from going to work every single day to being at home for 2.5 weeks is tough. It helps that it has been cold out and that Huz only has to go into school 3 days a week for several hours. It also has helped taking so many family walks together, but I'm getting bored, man! I can't leave to go shopping because there isn't anything close enough that would ensure my arrival back home in exactly 2 hours (when Claire needs to eat) and I'm reluctant to go out together as a family for very long because I have no idea how to breastfeed in public. I can't just whip it out, staring down at her making sure she's opening wide enough to latch on correctly when I'm all draped in a blanket, now can I? How do you do it breastfeeding Moms? I need to know because I think I'm going crazy over here!

We signed up for a diaper service that just started in Nashville - yippee! Now I can try cloth diapers, feel good about the environment*, help Claire to potty train sooner (it's true - do the research), save money, AND not have to deal with washing the poop in my own washing machine. Sweet! They are coming this afternoon with our delivery and a tutorial. How much of a mom does it make me that I'm truly excited by this? How much of a mom does it make me that when the breast pump I ordered arrived I was stoked? (How much of a bovine does it make me that when I hooked myself up to said machine I squirted out white streams of milk, making 2 oz. in barely 2 minutes? Damn, I'm a milk-making machine, yo!)

Huz is doing all he can to support me - he almost kicked me out of the house yesterday and insisted I get a manicure this week when he's home with Claire. I think I'm going to take him up on this. Look at the nice present he brought home for me the other day.


The card read, "I'm still in awe of you." It was referring to one of the sweetest things I've ever heard in my life - in the delivery room, between pushes, he leaned over me and said, "Victoria, I love you more than I've ever loved you before. I'm in awe of you and there's no place I'd rather be than right here with you now." He's the greatest thing that ever happened to me and I'll never get tired of saying it.

Here's me and the Widget taking a nap - something I really should do more often.


*In only 2.5 weeks time, we feel like we've destroyed the landfills with all the diapers Claire goes through. We've literally doubled how much trash we produce every week. She goes through 12-15 every day. Damn, that's a lot of non-biodegradable diapers!

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 12:14 PM

Sunday, November 4, 2007


I forgot to add how surprised I was that breastfeeding went so smoothly for us. I've heard horror stories about sore, cracked nipples and babies that just don't latch on, but we've never had that problem. I was sore up until day 5, then it was fine! Claire is a great latcher, she's clearly getting what she needs (last Friday she weighed 7 lbs 2 oz and the day before yesterday she weighed in at 7 lbs 12 oz!), and she's pooping like a champ now (and to believe I was worried that she'd never poop - ha!).

Her latest comical move? To poop and/or pee on Mom's hand when she's getting a fresh diaper put on her. Thanks, kid! She did this in the Drs. office on Friday after her appointment. I'm sure the nurses outside of the room were wondering why Huz and I were laughing so hard in that room by ourselves. Oh, and the day before that? Little comedian Claire puked (like projectile - as in big ol' arc over herself and onto me) the entire contents of her stomach onto my nice new nightie. N.I.C.E.

Ah, the joys of parenting. I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Life is good

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 11:26 AM

Saturday, November 3, 2007


Things that surprised me during pregnancy:

1. How random things would hurt - like my knuckles because of water retention. I'd wake up unable to bend my fingers without some serious arthritic-like pain.

2. How high my belly got - my boobs were literally resting on it. I kind of miss that support.

3. How no strangers reached out to touch my belly (not that I minded, believe me).

4. How much I got my waddle on in the last trimester.

5. How much my husband loved me and found me beautiful.

6. How much Cambridge walked all over the baby in utero.

7. How giving people would be - family, friends, and co-workers alike blessed us with many gifts.

Things that surprised me after pregnancy:

1. How much I love my child and her father.

2. How I cry when I watch something on t.v. related to children - especially when they get hurt.

3. How my va-jey jey didn't hurt afterwards. I thought it'd be murder for weeks, but I seriously have felt completely normal down there. Thank God for no tears.

4. How quickly I fit back into my jeans (I wore my size 6 yesterday! Oh yeah!).

5. How many other people find Claire adorable (it's not just us who think so!).

6. How much I stare at Claire's lovely little face. It's an addiction.

7. How giving people have been. Friends and folks from our church have been bringing us dinners almost every other night, which has been a fabulous help. We haven't had to go to the grocery store once since Claire was born 2 weeks ago (thanks to my Mom who stocked us up) and to all these dinners coming in. We feel so blessed and supported right now; we're truly grateful.

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 5:13 PM

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Post for Grandma

Sorry I haven't posted pictures for you in a while, Grandma. Please forgive me - I've been a bit sleep deprived and in a daze. Actually, last night was pretty good. Little Miss Claire went down around 11:00p.m. and then was up every 3 and a half hours. Yippee! To those without kids, sleeping for spurts of 3 and a half hours probably sounds treacherous but, believe me, after 1 and a half or 2 hour intervals, it's a dream! I never thought I'd live to see what 3:00a.m. looks like so consistently (I'm not a night person or a partier, can you tell?).

Anyway, on to the most recent pictures. I don't have any cutsie Halloween ones for you because the 2 pumpkin hat/bootie outfits we have for her are just too big and she looks like the Pumpkin Gansta big time. Maybe next month for Thanksgiving!? She is our Fall Pumpkin afterall.

First, here's a photo narrative by Huz. The other night (early, as you can see):


The family left him on his own in pursuit of Dreamville. This included the fur kids:


As well as me and the real kid:


Here's our cute little widget hanging out in her bouncy seat:


Here we are on our way out for another neighborhood walk. It was only in the 60s that day, but with the Little Furnace wrapped so closely to my body, I was literally sweating afterwards.


This is the Ultimate Baby Wrap and I like it because she's so secure, but it is a pain to wrap all that fabric around your body (I wouldn't want to take it to the grocery store, for example, because it drags on the ground while you put it on - maybe it'll just take more getting used to?). Don't you love the lengths we go to to entertain our child? Check out the fabric book we hung from the dining room chandelier. C-L-A-S-S-Y.

Here's the Bear* happy as a clam in her swing that some of my colleagues bought for us.


Here I am trying out another sling I received as a gift (and love), as well as my new iPod from one of the professors I work with (it was a thank you gift for helping him run his 8 week course! Talk about generous! I'm so glad I took this job! Whoa. Exclamation City, here we come.).


Finally, here are my favorite kind of shots - Daddy and his little girl. He's so smitten, it's not even funny.


She clearly surrenders to his love and returns it with complete trust in his arms.

I surrender!I'm the owiginal owiginator

*By the way, I must tell you that Claire Bear was our own invention. I've called Huz "Bear" for years and it was a natural to call her that because of the whole rhyming thing. However, now that Huz and I are watching Heroes, Season One (via Netflix, natch) in order to watch the current season and actually follow it, we were horrified to hear Evil Horn-Rimmed Glasses Man call his daughter Claire Bear. Horrified, I tell you! Hey! That's our name and we didn't get it from t.v.! Ugh.

Posted by Bird On A Line @ 10:25 AM

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