Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Chicago Redux

While I was busy presenting a report I wrote, my parents hit the town with Connor. Part of the adventure involved the zoo – which I am sure Connor enjoyed, but the day started out a bit less exciting. They took him to the American Doll Store. This is not a place I would advise taking Connor. He doesn’t exactly “play gently” with toys – and these dolls are pricey, to say the least. Owning one because its head was severed from its body in an untimely fashion is not how I'd like one to come into my life. My nieces each have one of these dolls, compliments of Santa last year. I know Connor looks very innocent in the photo, but it's just him showing what a great actor he can be.

Connor certainly surprises me sometimes. In this case, he clearly sized up what he was about to be subjected to and fell asleep within about a block of the hotel exit. He and my dad then enjoyed napping in the store while my mom photographed the store to share with my nieces, visiting each of the THREE floors, which include a hair salon where, for the low price of about $20, you can have your doll’s hair styled. Wow – what a bargain! The store also has a hospital for the dolls (common ailments include broken arms, legs, and magic marker – oh if only this store existed when my sister’s kewpie doll got a bright purple bathing suit drawn on her one year – maybe by me, but I don’t remember the incident and the artwork was a bit nicer than I suspect I could’ve mustered).

Connor and my mom got along quite well (which is good because she had made him a box of frosted sugar cookies) and Connor also proved that he has no common sense, practically diving into the water at the hotel pool with my dad. Connor endeared himself forever as favorite grandson when he called my dad "pappy" which in Connor's version is a whispered "puh puh". Very cute!


Monday, October 30, 2006

Animal Relocation Project of My Own

Today, I learned that I love my kid more than most people who know me thought possible. Either that, or my penchant for being thrifty is greater than my fear of spiders. A very kind woman who lives not far from me advertised a free outdoor playhouse, and I was lucky enough to be selected as the home’s new owner. Connor has always loved these homes, but I didn’t think it worth the cash to purchase one. That, and I’d hate for them to become so mundane that he doesn’t get at all excited when he sees one.

Because Ed and I drive a small car, the house needed to be taken apart and moved in two shifts. I went on a solo mission initially, because frankly Connor doesn’t tend to be all that helpful on adventures such as these and Ed was still at work. The previous owner of the home failed to mention that I would need a screwdriver to get the house apart, but thankfully a very kind construction worker up the street lent me the appropriate tool. This is where the project almost ended. Inside the home, there were probably 20 spiders – and a few insect carcasses to boot. At this point, I wasn’t certain it was worth it, but I forged onward, and was able to get the roof off the house only dropping the screwdriver a couple of times to do my patented “ewww…there’s a spider NEAR me” dance, which is the only way I know to get them to back off. Trust me, the closest I want to come to a spider is the singing of the Itsy Bitsy Spider, which Connor surprised me today by performing some of the hand motions unprompted. I suspect this is something he’s been doing with his nanny.

Ed joined me on the second portion of the mission because it involved lifting the two large pieces above my head and tying them onto the roof of the car. That mission was actually easier because I couldn’t see all the spiders that remained on these two pieces and could pretend they all skittered away after I disturbed them earlier in the day. I suspect I will be proven wrong about this tomorrow when I go to clean the house, but the fantasy was nice. Thus, there are now about 20 spiders relocated from the yard the house came from to my backyard. I’m sort of going in the opposite direction of my dad. He reports that the current counts for his animal relocation project are:

Squirrels - 17
Birds - 7
Raccoons- 2
Possums - 1
Rabbits - 1

Though the garden lays dormant, my dad’s mission to rid the yard of squirrels continues. Reportedly, he’s going to stay in the trapping business a bit longer to see how many more squirrels he can catch.

Connor – if you don’t like your new playhouse, please pretend that you do because as I type this, I can STILL feel the spiders crawling up my arms. I will not be attempting any more animal relocation projects of my own anytime soon. Ewww!


Thursday, October 26, 2006

Keeping A Baby Healthy

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that women breastfeed their infants for at least one year, and for as long as mutually desirable. The World Health Organization doubles the AAP’s minimum recommendation. While almost three-quarters of moms in the US breastfeed their babies at some point, only half of those who start are still breastfeeding their babies at six months. One in five babies are breastfed for at least 1 year – the minimum recommended time. A lonely 6.7 percent of moms are still breastfeeding their children at 18 months. Data beyond this point don’t seem to exist – but with numbers already this low, what’s the point?

Connor is a breastfed baby.
Connor is growing into a breastfed toddler.

To say I had trouble breastfeeding Connor would the understatement of the century. For genetic reasons, I am unable to produce milk in one breast – and the other breast needed substantial encouragement to get with it and produce milk. Most women like me (few that we are), would never have had the opportunity to breastfeed their baby. I got lucky. My baby was born at home and the midwife and birth assistant that attended my birth called an incredibly fabulous lactation consultant who was kind enough to drive out to my home on the Friday Connor was born. Ed and I always joke that Pat was sitting in her office and heard there was a breastfeeding emergency in the suburbs. She hopped in her boob shaped car, turned on the nipple siren, and headed our way. Had anyone with less experience, enthusiasm, or knowledge shown up, Connor and I might not have experienced the benefits of breastfeeding. We had a lot of trouble along the way, including minor yeast infections, plugged ducts and a very nasty case of mastitis over Christmas. It probably wasn’t until 9 months that we really hit our stride. Prior to that, I took Domperidone to increase milk production. This drug is offered over-the-counter in Europe, but is very expensive and only available at compounding pharmacies in the US, of which there are two in the very large metro area I live in. All I can say to that is – thank you, internet. And when people say breastfeeding can be difficult - I understand.

So, who is most likely to breastfeed in this country? Moms over 30, moms with at least a college degree, married moms, moms with incomes over 3.5 times the official poverty ratio, and Hispanic moms. I am all but one of these. Incidentally, when I decided to have my baby at home with the assistance of a midwife, I signed a contract that detailed what the midwife was going to do and what I was going to do. My responsibilities included taking a class on breastfeeding and promising to breastfeed my baby. I was told to consider myself totally incapacitated for two weeks after I gave birth. In the words of my midwife, my job was to “make milk” – and that was my only job. How many OBs (or pediatricians, for that matter) do you know that place this much emphasis on infant nutrition? And how many new dads take over the household completely, sleep-deprived as they are, and keep everything running fabulously, a task aided in our case by Ed’s generous paternity leave benefits?

What else might it take to breastfeed? A good lactation consultant; the Milkmoms (a group of women I met through my lactation consultant who provide mother-to-mother support); a very supportive partner; a sister, mother, mother-in-law or close friend that can answer questions frankly - because questions do come up; a personality that allows you to breastfeed in public - or a public who doesn't stop to stare when a woman feeds her child; and if you're going to work outside the home - an office that affords enough privacy to pump, and ideally work that can be done while pumping.

Why do we breastfeed? For one, human breastmilk has the ability to heal the sick – something its inferior pretender, infant formula, cannot do. Breastfed babies have fewer ear infections, urinary tract infections, respiratory infections, gastrointestinal infections, and bacterial meningitis and they produce more antibodies in response to routine immunizations. The health benefits to babies extend long after weaning. They are less likely to develop illnesses associated with misdirected immune reactions such as asthma, juvenile diabetes, allergies, Crohn’s disease, and several other conditions. Children breastfed as infants are less likely to develop cancer and obesity, and have higher IQs. But the benefits are not one-way. Women who breastfeed see their uteruses return to their pre-pregnancy size sooner and typically have menstruation suppressed, which leads to less blood loss in the sleepless first months of motherhood. They are also at reduced risk of ovarian and breast cancer – though the latest studies show these latter benefits begin to accrue once a woman breastfeeds for at least 13 months.

Breastfeeding is also a pain in the butt. It is the one job that no one else can do. If skipped, particularly during those early weeks when milk supply is being established, the mom can have trouble building her supply up to an adequate amount. When a breastfed baby needs to be fed in the middle of the night, you know who answers the call. And once I headed back to work, I had to pump milk during the day for Connor while I was away, which sucks. I am delighted that Connor will drink cow's milk when I am away these days. I do not miss that pump!

So here we are. I’m hoping for Connor to be inspired to wean himself at some point, because I just can’t look him in the eye and not feed him when he pats my chest because at this point, it really is a simple act. Perhaps some weekend I go away he’ll kick the habit. Either that, or I’ll have the only kid heading off to college who neither naps without me when I'm around nor uses a cup!


Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Stone Soup

Last weekend, Connor and I went to Chicago. This was the second time we've maneuvered through an airport, sans assistance. I can’t say it was the quickest trip through O’Hare, but I certainly did get to see a lot of things I normally don’t notice. For example, Connor was willing to stop and pick up selected pieces of trash to give me, and then we enjoyed throwing these little pieces of trash into the garbage cans (setting a fine example for anyone who was thinking it would be appropriate to just DROP trash anywhere on the floor). He also pointed out, many times, that we could view airplanes from the right side of the main aisle OR the left side. I wonder if all those people running to catch flights realized this magnificent feature of the airport? And, who knew there were so many stores with items just right for babies to pick up as they toddled by – or rather, darted toward as if their life depended on each and every one of them? I had never noticed them in quite the same way as I did on this trip! I also don’t think I have ever appreciated the extra miles Connor must travel each day because he is seemingly unable to walk in anything that resembles a straight line.

We headed into downtown Chicago in a taxi – MOM – Did you see? There is a SIGN on the TOP of the car? – DAH! DAH! DAH! (We should really look into getting a car this cool.) My parents had already arrived, and showing that you just can’t keep a grandparent down, they were waiting with new toys, frosted cookies, and a camera. Two cameras, actually. We rode the trolley down to the Navy Pier (after a very kind local pointed us in the right direction – something the surly man in a trolley pointed the wrong direction was unwilling to do) and headed for an Italian restaurant, followed by the Children’s Museum. If you have a child and you live anywhere near Chicago – you should run, not walk, to that museum. Even my dad had fun!

Before we left, I was pondering what I could do to make sure Ed remembered us. I thought about sticking some ice cubes beneath the covers to remind him of my very cold feet, or setting an alarm to scream at him at random intervals throughout the night, or even leaving a few small toys with sharp corners in choice locations. In the end, I decided since he was making an effort to fix our crapshack , I would try not to do anything to hinder his progress. Connor, however, proving that he is always one step ahead of both Ed and me, left a carefully placed stone in the pan Ed makes soup in. Reportedly, Ed (always the observant man of the house), emptied his can of soup in the pan, heated it, and didn’t realize there was a stone in there until he emptied the warm soup into his bowl and heard an odd clank. Score 1 for Connor.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Dads are fun…

Or at least Connor’s dad is fun. Sometimes I wonder which of my men have more fun when they go to the park. Ed is happy to scamper up the slide, climb on the equipment, and generally return to his long ago youth to entertain Connor. A few days ago, he went to the park with Connor and reported that none of the moms were any fun. They all just sat around on the benches watching their kids and even though some of their kids wanted to be pushed in Connor’s little red car, they didn’t budge. (Ed, naturally, took a few of them on a spin.)

Ed also comes up with countless games for Connor to play around the house – that really tap into Connor’s destructive, freewheeling nature. For example, Connor’s inflatable bathtub comes with some little inflatable rings – and there’s a place on the bathtub that the rings can be placed. When I bathe Connor, we talk about the colors of the rings (pink, green, and yellow) and practice putting them in their intended place. Connor seems very proud of himself and has mastered a few colors in the process. Ed puts these rings in his mouth, spits them towards Connor and says “phooey”. Connor laughs.

On Saturday morning, Connor and I were playing with one of his toys – and all of a sudden Ed and all his energy bounded into the room – and the next words I heard out of Ed’s mouth were “Sorry I interrupted your nice quiet play”. Uh yeah, me too, because now one of us has to chase the little man around the house as he attempts to open and close every door, cabinet, and drawer that he can get into and try and keep our house from being destroyed before we’ve even had breakfast.

One of the parks we go to has a HUGE slide – which is built into the side of a hill. It is fantastic. I guarantee that even if Ed didn’t have the excuse of Connor, he would slide down the thing at full tilt, just because it’s so darn tempting. We met a friend there and as fun as it is to watch Connor go down the slide, we’ve seen the look of delight from him before. It was pure joy watching Zoe’s first trip down the slide. In a few months, I imagine they’ll both be abandoning parents and heading down the giant slide on their own – but for now, parental presence is suggested, if not required.

And…just so you know your mama can still hang, Connor, I went down the slide with you too!


Monday, October 16, 2006


Last weekend, a friend of mine from grad school and his wife took us sailing. Connor served as an excellent ambassador for future infants who may be granted boarding privileges. Because he lacks common sense, Connor was the only passenger on board who kept his PFD on for the whole cruise. We figured a cold, wet, floating baby was better than the alternative – should he decide to go overboard at some point. Luckily, he adapted to the vest quickly and stayed in the boat. In short, he loved it. Sadly, I left my camera in the car so you will just have to imagine Connor pointing at all the other boats, pointing at birds in the sky, and eating potato chips. Think “HUGE SMILE!”.

While on board, I learned that the cabin of a boat is probably the only baby-proofed place we’ve ever been to where a baby wasn’t already present. Everything is pretty much tied down, so that it doesn’t get thrown about if the water is rough. The door to the bathroom was fastened so that it could neither pinch fingers nor open, which provided a great deal of entertainment for Connor when he and I went down to the cabin during the docking of the boat. He couldn’t seem to figure out why he could open it a few inches and not quite get it closed – making a fantastic crashing noise as he tried both of these things.

Afterwards, he did try a bit of dock diving, but Ed thwarted his efforts. We went around to the beach so Connor could get his feet wet – and Connor promptly sat down, getting a bit more than his feet wet. This meant that Connor had to ride home in his little fleece snow outfit because we had failed to bring a change of clothes. He was sleeping and didn’t seem to mind – though we kept the cool air coming! At the beginning of this journey, we were very good about bringing loads of clothes, diapers, and anything else Connor might need. Seems as if we’ve become a bit lax.


Thursday, October 12, 2006

Happy 14 Month Birthday!

Dear Connor,

This month, you have officially turned into a toddler. Getting around on all fours is virtually a thing of the past. And, reaching above your head to get things that were previously off limits is a thing of the present. Just this morning you walked over to the chess board, grabbed a few choking hazards (a.k.a. pieces) and threw them on the floor. Thanks. I’m glad you could see I needed help getting more stuff on the floor since just last night I picked up all the stuff that was on the floor in anticipation of the housecleaner coming today.

You now drink undiluted cow’s milk from a bottle during the day – and in the evening you sort of half nurse, half drink from a bottle. When I’m around in the daytime, you have no interest in drinking from a bottle – to the point that your dad thinks you can somehow sense when I will be around all day so you don’t have to drink from a bottle. Thankfully, you still gulp down a couple of bottles with the nanny each day when I am not around so I don’t have to worry about you. Baby food is virtually a thing of the past when it comes to lunch and dinner, but on occasion you’ll still have a bowl of yummy baby mush to start the day. You even attempt to expertly guide the spoon from bowl to mouth – and while I wouldn’t say you’ve had extended success, you’re definitely on the right track.

Having become quite skilled at walking (and gyrating your whole body when you start to fall so that you somehow mange to stay upright much of the time), you have recently turned your attention back to communication. You know a sheep says “ba”, a cow says “moo”, a horse says “neigh” and a cat says “meow” – which you say in this really sweet high-pitched voice. Mims, Pappy, and Aunt Linda were all quite impressed when you displayed these skills via the phone. I swore I would not be one of those parents who teaches their kids tricks and then asks them to perform for others, but it turns out you are so irresistibly cute that I am, in fact, one of those parents. I’ve sort of reconciled it in my soul by saying it’s good for you to participate in conversations with others, even if your participation is somewhat canned. And that perhaps is the lesson I offer you this month. Rationalization. It’ll lift your spirits some days.

You have been known to carry on full conversations with but one syllable, and your little pointer has become your biggest ally. For example, if you wish to ride your little car, you simply point outside, then point around the house where the shed is, then point to open the shed, then point up at the red car, and then giggle with delight when your dad or I gets the car out of the shed and takes you on a drive. If you don’t want to do something, you look at us and say “nah”, in an oh-so-casual way. Yeah Connor, you’re cool.

A couple of days ago, you made it clear that you were going to try the age old strategy of “divide and conquer” when it came to your dad and me. You screamed in the middle of the night at about the time the Motrin we gave you before bed was wearing off. I went into your room, gave you another dose, nursed you backed to sleep – but then when I went to lay you on your pillow, you grabbed onto me with a strength known only to babies, looked up at me, decided I was intent on getting you to sleep in your bed, so tested your strategy. You looked directly toward my bedroom door, pointed that trusty little pointer and screamed “DAAAA DAAAA DAAAA” in such an insistent way that my heart literally broke. I thought to myself, as I tried to gather all the pieces of my heart up so I could glue them back together later, that there was no way your dad would hear you and be able to resist bringing you into bed with us. And Connor, now is probably when I should point out that in theory, I do not mind you sleeping with us. In fact, there is nothing cuter than a week or so ago when you were doing just that and after turning yourself around like a ferris wheel a number of times, you ended up with your head on your dad’s pillow. I looked over at the two of you snoring and sharing a pillow and knew that I was the luckiest person on Earth to have you both in my life. Tired (because who can sleep with all that snoring going on?), but lucky. In the end, neither your dad nor I get much sleep when you’re with us, and I’m not sure you get a very good night’s sleep either. Though your strategy seemed a good one, you miscalculated how hard hearted your dad can be in the middle of the night. He came into your room, gave you a big hug, told you he loved you, and handed you back to me as he went back to bed. Sensing defeat, you nursed again and went right to sleep.

Your smile, Connor, oh how I love your smile. I love the way you get excited and take the hugest inhale and then let your laughter ring through the room. It’s true what all parents seem to say at some point or another – you grow up fast!


Wednesday, October 11, 2006

The reason we have the poison control number on our phone

Today, I got another bad mom award, though not one that necessitates dropping quarters in the therapy jar. Connor does, indeed, have an ear infection. After a very long wait at the pediatrician's office, the last instruction I thought I received was "Give Connor THREE TO FOUR teaspoons of amoxicillan". With prescription in hand, I headed to the local pharmacy, and then home. I thought it was odd that there was such a wide range in the dosage, but didn't think enough of it, apparently. I got out the medicine syringe, which only goes up to TWO teaspoons and said to the nanny "Wow, three to four teaspoons is a lot of medicine to give a baby". She agreed. Connor drank THREE teaspoons up fairly easily. This was repeated in the evening, at which point I said to Ed "there's no way there's enough medicine in this bottle to last 10 days" and Ed said "the math is pretty simple, there must be enough there". After a decent night's sleep, I got up to give Connor dose three - at which point I'm certain an ashen look came over my face as I told Ed "I think I'm supposed to be giving Connor three-fourths of a teaspoon - NOT THREE TO FOUR TEASPOONS". I called poison control. Sort of in a joking manner we had put the stickers on our phone when the pediatrician sent them home with us a few months back. Now, I'm glad the stickers are there.

The very kind lady at poison control (who now has my name and number along with all of the other bad moms who accidentally poison their children) told me there was nothing to worry about. She even said that if I had realized my mistake right away they wouldn't have had me do anything about it. The only side effect is that Connor may have a bit of "loose poop", which would actually be a miracle for Connor - though I promise to not use this as a strategy to empty his bowels more regularly.

Now I have to figure out what to tell the pediatrician when we run out of medicine early - though my recollection from the other time Connor had amoxicillin is that there was a bunch left over. I'm crossing my fingers about that. This might be what I get for making snarky comments about Ed being an idiot in front of the pediatrician.


Monday, October 9, 2006

The day I fogot my phone number

This afternoon, Connor ate many crackers at once and read a book.

Tonight, Connor cried. And I don’t mean, he cried for a few minutes because he was sad our long weekend was coming to end. I mean, he cried for over an HOUR. More than SIXTY minutes - with only a couple of pauses. That's three thousand six hundred seconds --- of crying! He was completely inconsolable during that time. This has never happened. I lost my mind. At first, I thought he was just a bit over-tired when we started getting him ready for bed (though we were doing this early, noticing he was a bit tired). But then, it became obvious it was something more than that, though what it was, Ed and I have no idea.

Connor and Ed went outside to catch a few last moments of outdoor time before the long weekend was coming to an end. I drew his bath, and when Connor came inside, he started crying. After refusing his bath (a nightly ritual that he usually revels in), I tried to read him some books (the second part of the nightly ritual that he usually loves) – but he would have none of it. Instead, he cried. And then we got down to business nursing – the final activity that he normally loves. And when I say, the final activity Connor normally loves, I mean it. Tell him he can nurse, and the kid actually throws his little body at my chest, smiling, panting, laughing. It is, for him, the definition of happiness. (Perhaps the reason that this weaning thing is not going well.)

He nursed a bit, actually drank a few ounces from a bottle, and then perked up momentarily. I thought he wanted to read books, and we read 1.5, and then the crying started again. And it wouldn’t stop for more than a few moments. He cried, he pointed outside, we went outside, he cried some more. He pointed downstairs, we went downstairs, and he cried. Ed could hear the distress and came to offer support (thankfully!), but still, the crying continued. Finally, we decided to give Connor some Motrin, because he really seemed to be in pain. And then it hit me – MY SON'S APPENDIX MUST HAVE BURST AND THAT'S WHY HE WAS CRYING UNCONSOLABLY. I decided we should go to the ER RIGHT AWAY, which prompted Ed to think maybe we should hold off on the Motrin. But then Ed thought maybe we should call my brother-in-law for an over the phone consult (not that he’s a pediatrician, but he is an ER doctor). He was working, but my sister was prepared to offer advice. Give him the Motrin, she said. Apparently doctors in general are not impressed when someone brings their kid to the ER and haven’t even offered the simplest of medicines. Call the pediatrician, was her next piece of advice (along with trying to work out gas from his tummy in case that was the problem). Note, earlier in the day Connor farted so loud and so long that I thought it was Ed. Connor is a very small person to be having man-sized gas.

We shot the Motrin in his screaming mouth. He gargled, but eventually swallowed. The crying continued. I called the pediatrician’s office, and the crying continued. It had been over an hour now, I had lost my mind. The answering service asked what number the pediatrician should call, I told them “I don’t know. I can’t remember my phone number.” This fact alone is amazing. I REMEMBER phone numbers. Ed often calls me RainMan when he needs a phone number. I still know the phone number of almost every airline from back in the day before the internet (yes Connor, that is how old your mama is) when one had to call each airline to figure out the price of flights in order to get the best deal.

Luckily, Ed had not forgotten our phone number (Ed is a very smart man and he hadn’t realized yet that our son’s appendix had probably burst - so he could still think like a rational human). He relayed this important piece of information to me, but it sounded like many foreign digits to me and I wasn’t certain he had gotten it right. Our pediatrician called back within moments (hey, Ed does know our phone number!). The pediatrician could hear the crying in the background. He asked a few questions, complimented me on giving Connor Motrin, told me to wait an hour (apparently he was not concerned that my son’s appendix had burst) and then the crying stopped. Connor passed out, naked, on Ed’s chest. We were greatly relieved – though the crying was still ringing in our ears. We were able to tape a diaper on him, put his pajamas on him, and Ed took him up to bed. Connor was completely asleep.

Tomorrow, we will go visit the pediatrician. Apparently Connor might have an ear infection (this would be his second), which could be why he hasn’t been drinking much (too painful), which has caused him to have trouble pooping, which could also be painful. For now, though, the crying has stopped, and I’m pretty sure I know my phone number. I am really sure I’m glad Ed was home, because this was a task that needed at least the two of us (plus my sister and the pediatrician via phone).


Saturday, October 7, 2006

More help around the house

Connor discovered the buckets Ed brews beer in this weekend. Basically, Connor turns anything that is about waist high into a walker. The buckets were no different. He proved he can push them around. Next I suspect Ed will have him stirring the contents and adding hops – tasks I’m certain Connor would love. Please, dad?

Monday, October 2, 2006

We went to the market…

and we got a Connor! By the time we got there, only one was for sale, and we feel pretty lucky we got him! It was easy to get him in the bag, but much harder to get him out. I think Connor would’ve played in the bag all day had we let him. But, at 18 pounds, he’s a bit heavy to be carrying around in a shoulder bag, so eventually he had to get out and walk.

Not only is he growing heavier, he’s also revealing more and more of that stubborn streak of his (that he gets from his dad). Lately, he’s been obsessed with the Great CD Player. Whenever he sees it, he wants to push the buttons, open the top, insert the CD, etc. I keep telling him that it’s not for babies, but he is unconvinced. Last night, Ed and I gave in. We issued Connor a blank CD to play with thinking maybe he would get over his fascination with the Great CD Player.
Within moments, Connor was demonstrating how to put CDs in and take them out, how to press the buttons, and clapping for himself as he honored the Great CD Player. If he could talk, I know Connor would be saying “see, Mom, I told you I could do it by myself”. And, if it were a CD I cared about, I would say “Yes, Connor, but you just scratched the crap out of that CD so now every time we try and play it, I will be annoyed”. Luckily, Connor can’t talk yet, so I have some time to figure out a more appropriate response.

Oh - and I get 1 mommy point for running across the playground and swiping Connor from beneath the slide just before a larger kid bowled him over coming down the slide. Several moms were impressed.