Plomin Family Bragablog

July 1, 2009

Mac ‘n’ Cheese & A Hot Dog

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 8:59 pm
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When I asked Karol what she wanted to eat for breakfast this morning, this was her distinct reply, “Mac ‘n’ Cheese and a hot dog.”  She said this as clear as day, despite that she’d just woken up, and had a pacifier still teetering between her teeth.  I talked her into eggs and Cheerios.  “Mac ‘n’ Cheese” has become her autopilot response to the ‘what to eat’ question!

June 29, 2009

Second Week Down

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 1:39 am
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Eight weeks left with the NYC – DC commute for Matt.  I just sent him packing back to the Big Apple for another week a couple of hours ago.  We were lucky enough to have him home again this weekend. 

Ironically, I haven’t posted much about what happens during the week, and that’s because, well, nothing much happens.  Sure, Karol’s vocab is out of this world, and Patrick is chatting so much now he could have his own radio show, but for the most part we three just sit around here waiting for Matt to come back.  On occasion I’ll try to take the kids on some sort of outing – anything to get out of the apartment – but it generally just ends in tears (theirs or mine; it’s a toss-up) and a ruined bedtime routine.  The best days are the ones where we get home from work/play, eat dinner, have some free play and then read stories until bed.  Occasionally I’ll have the energy to stay up and do some housecleaning, but generally I go to sleep when they do.

The weekends are the exciting time for us.  Not only because that’s when Daddy’s home (although that’s at least 70% of it) but because we can plan activities in reasonable blocks of time.  This weekend we had a great Saturday: pancakes for breakfast, then out for a walk to the market and a picnic with lots of other kids and parents in the afternoon! 

Sunday we actually made it to Mass ON TIME.  We sat in what’s called “The Upper Room.”  It’s kind of like the cry room because it’s sealed off and the Mass is piped in on speakers, but it’s on the 2nd floor and is basically just overflow space.  It overlooks the entire congregation and the alter, like having a balcony seat to the Mass.  Karol behaved marvelously today, and really enjoyed watching the Mass from above.  Patrick slept for most of it, so I got to cuddle and squeeze him the whole time.  I actually got to hear the whole homily!  The rest of the day we spent pretty much in the apartment chilling out.

Here I am trying to catch a pic of Patty's new tooth.  It's barely a nub on the bottom front right.

Here I am trying to catch a pic of Patty's new tooth. It's barely a nub on the bottom front right.

In other news, Patrick is officially cutting teeth, and not thrilled about it.  I can tell it’s pretty uncomfortable and I just feel terrible for him.  He was struggling with it all day, and (stupid mommy) it wasn’t until tonight that I thought to give him any Tylenol to relieve it!  Finally though, after lots of feeding, a pacifier, getting wrapped tight, and turning on the ocean sound machine, he’s out.

Karol had the honor of licking the beater!  Well, Mommy helped...

Karol had the honor of licking the beater! Well, Mommy helped...

 

 

Karol and I had a wonderful time today baking up cupcakes for Matt to take to his office in NYC (don’t ask…or ask Matt, not me!)  Karol certainly likes to be a part of the action, and with my mediocre cooking skills, there’s very little chance she’ll make it any worse!  Actually we whipped up some awesome Irish coffee cake turned into cupcakes.  There was a fair amount of batter left over that pretty much became my dinner.  I feel pretty icky, so I’m regretting that now, however.  And yes, I had to thoroughly mop the floor tonight.

June 23, 2009

Self-Medicating

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 8:49 pm
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With chocolate, that is.  I had two handfuls of peanut M&Ms and a Snicker’s today – and a giant Coke (I asked for a medium but I didn’t realize today’s ‘medium’ is yesterday’s ‘large’).  I’ve gone off the deep end!  

Actually, I’ve just hit the wall of sleep deprivation.  I haven’t gotten much lately, since I haven’t gone to bed before midnight most nights (my fault) and since Patty-poo wakes me up a couple of times a night.  And last night, Karol had a night terror again, for a solid half hour, and I always stay up and feel awful that I can’t do anything to help her the whole time.  I’m having a hard time distinguishing ‘night terror’ from ‘demon possession,’ so I say a few prayers just in case.  Invariably, she woke up this morning much more pleasant than usual!  

So, all that left me feeling more than a little run-down today.  I’m planning to go to bed with the kids tonight, I think.  I’d really like to take advantage of the sun and go to the playground with them, but I don’t know if I have that kind of energy right now.

Only four days til the weekend…

June 22, 2009

One Week Down

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 4:13 pm
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Nine to go.  Last week was our first week with Matt away at New York.  As you can imagine, it was a little bit more of a struggle, but things went pretty well, for the most part.  Karol was noticeably missing him, though.  What’s worse is that she really can’t express her feelings yet, so it all just builds into an emotional breakdown for her.

But we got a pleasant surprise – Matt was able to come home for the Father’s Day weekend!  We were originally going to go up and visit him in NYC, but the car has been having problems, and it was tons easier (and cheaper) for Matt just to take the bus down.  We’re hoping to be able to do this most weekends.  

I can’t put into words the difference having Matt home made for Karol.  All I can say is that it was evident in her whole demeanor that she’s just not at ease without Daddy around, and she’s so contented and comfortable when he is.  

Karol and Matt on the metro.  Yes, she's totally a DC native.

Karol and Matt on the metro. Yes, she's totally a DC native.

We spent most of the weekend out and about, so next weekend I’m aiming to stay in most of the time and maybe utilize the lovely amenities at our apartment, like the pool.  That is, if Matt’s there.  I’m certainly not going to attempt to take the kids to the pool alone!

This morning was…rough.  Karol had a terrible time and was stalling leaving the house.  She wanted to cuddle and read, but not until it was time to leave, of course.  Once she got settled in at Lori’s, she was fine, but I hate seeing her so upset.  She was just terribly upset and I hate that I can’t fix it.  Maybe tomorrow morning I’ll wake her up early and try to get some extra mommy-time in and see if that helps.

So the week got off to a rocky start, to say the least.  Stay posted to find out how the rest of it goes!

May 12, 2009

My Mother’s Day Angels

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 12:34 pm
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Karol and Patrick were perfect angels for me for most of the Mass at what will probably be our new Church, St. Charles Borromeo in Arlington.  I really liked the atmosphere, as there were plenty of families with children Karol’s age.  I got there a little late and the place was standing room only – 9am is a popular Mass time apparently.  

I saw there was a cry room so I made a beeline for it.  I’m usually anti-cry room, but with no Matt and an unpredictable toddler, I thought I’d rather be safe than sorry.  The cry room is at the back of the Church with huge windows.  You can see straight in and straight out.  To my surprise, the children in there were actually very well behaved.  There were some sitting on laps and others quietly playing with toys.  

Then I realized why they were so behaved — the windows.  Just because the people outside can’t hear your children, they can still see them, so parents still had to be accountable.  Matt and I hated the cry room at St. Michael’s because if there were other kids in there the parents just let them loose and ignored them.  Not cool.

After Mass I wanted to do something extra special with my kids, since it was Mother’s Day and all.  So we went to Georgetown.  At first I almost turned around and went home because of course there was zero parking available, but then I remembered a tucked away spot a couple blocks toward the river I’d found out about while making a video for work.  Yay, free parking and there’s one spot open!  

So I wrestled the monster double stroller out of the trunk and the three of us went on a walk on the boardwalk along the Potomac.  It was beautiful!  Here are an example to show you what I mean.

 STP80077

We walked all the way up to the Washington Harbor, halfway back, and then over to Georgetown.  I thought I would want to “shop,” but there was no way I was going to maneuver that massive stroller in and out of those tiny doorways, especially since I was only half-hearted about buying anything anyway.  I spotted a Ben & Jerry’s and thought that would be a treat for all of us!  So Karol and I got some ice cream and went back to the Potomac to eat it.  

 

STP80090

After that we walked down the River again and back to the car.  This time, Karol walked.  And boy did she throw a royal fit when she realized we weren’t staying – but before that, I got this super sweet picture of her watching the water.

 Karol Water

Patrick was like this the entire trip:

 Pat Sleeping

So we headed home, had lunch, and a half hour nap – that’s right, too many catnaps in the car and stroller, none of which is really quality sleep – and read a few books.  Then we went for a walk around our neighborhood – Karol on foot and Patrick on the Bjorn.  Karol was getting tired and whiny until she saw the playground.  All of a sudden it went from whine, whine, to “SLIDES!!”  And she took off running!  Well, Karol running is just a brisk walk for me, but you get the idea.  

So we spent a full hour at the playground.  Karol did a lot of new stuff.  I’m really amazed at how much she’s capable of, physically and mentally.  She was climbing stairs, climbing up the slides without help.  She even went down the big curly slide all by herself!  That took more bravery on my part.  It’s very hard for me to stand back and just let her play, but as I get more comfortable with the surroundings, and more confident in her abilities, I’m starting to let her run free a little bit.  

Oh, I should note for Matt’s sake – she saw a lovely pink and purple bike with training wheels that she now desperately wants.  I told her that would be Daddy’s department and she needed to talk to him.  So there you go Matt.

After about an hour, Karol voluntarily (after I suggested watching Elmo and taking a bath – 2 of Karol’s favorite activities) left the park.  THAT’S how tired she was!  By 6:30, she was asleep on the couch. 

It didn’t last long though, she still needed to eat dinner and go through the bedtime rituals.  She really went to sleep around 8:30.  Patrick was out around 8, but I kept holding him because he’s just so cuddly and sweet.  After writing an email to Matt, I had to call it a night by 10.

I know it sounds stressful taking care of two babies under two years old all by myself – and it is – but I just loved spending the whole weekend with them.  I can’t imagine a better Mother’s Day. 

We are getting into a rhythm as ‘the three of us’ for now.  I will be so happy when Matt comes home though.  I don’t even want to think about how hard it will be – emotionally, that is – while he’s away.  This weekend aside, the days kind of drag without him here.  And though Karol hasn’t shown any signs of distress, she had a little trouble sleeping last night, and I just wonder if that’s because of the adjustment. 

Ah, well, on that note, I’ll leave you with this:

STP80107

May 10, 2009

Lonely

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 1:56 am
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Matt left Friday for Turkey.  It’s almost 10pm here now, which means it’s like 5am there.  Surprisingly we’ve already talked a couple of times, but we’re trying not to do too much phone since it’s super expensive. 

The kids are doing really well.  Karol hasn’t really noticed yet that Matt hasn’t been home, but at the mere mention of him her face lights up and she gives a breathy “Daddy!”  It’s so cute.  We were hoping to be able to skype, but I guess Matt’s internet connection is pretty bad at the hotel they are at.  Maybe it’s just as well.  Whenever we skype with Daddy or Granny, Karol thinks that all she has to do is open the computer and they will just be there, whenever she wants.  Then she’s disappointed when they aren’t. 

We actually are doing pretty good so far.  I haven’t lost my mind yet, so that’s great, as far as I can tell.  We went to the Reston Zoo today, which was GREAT.  I was totally prepared.  I brought the Baby Bjorn, Karol’s monkey leash, the double stroller (which I had to rearrange the entire car to do — we need an SUV ASAP), the directions to the Zoo, an entire lunch, shoes and socks, in case Karol’s sandals rubbed her feet raw…I brought everything we could possibly need, and then left the camera sitting on the kitchen table.  I really wanted to kick myself for that.  Arg!  But the zoo was so awesome I would mind going back soon to recreate the experience and get a few pics to share with you all.

I would normally stay up pretty late on a Saturday night, but that’s pretty depressing to do all by myself, so I think I’ll head off to bed.  I have one more assignment to do for this week (started a new class this week) and then it’s lights out.

May 5, 2009

Little Miss Virginia

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 2:01 pm
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Well Karol is undoubtedly my daughter.  I did her hair this morning and like we usually do, I said “Oo, look at Karol’s pretty hair!” and Matt says “Ooo, so pretty!!”  Today, though, Karol’s reaction was especially narcissistic – she had a huge grin on her face that said ‘I know I’m gorgeous!’  I wish I’d captured her crunched-up nose toothy grin, but I did get a few ham shots.  In one of these she looks like she’s upset – don’t let that fool you – she was totally playing it up for the camera.  You can tell by the way she’s laughing in all the other pics!

April 29, 2009

In other news…

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 1:38 pm
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Karol has started to declare her love for things.  This morning she was saying “I luh shasmpkey.” (I love Shamsky).  For those that don’t know, “Shamsky” is her stuffed dog, named after Robert’s dog from Everybody Loves Raymond.  Karol sleeps with this and her ‘doggie,’ which you probably remember was her Halloween costume last year.  It now acts as a lovey.  Anyway, Shamsky looks like this:

 

Shamsky Look-Alike

Shamsky Look-Alike

It’s Potty Time!!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 4:00 am
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So, apparently Karol decided Matt and I weren’t potty training her fast enough, so she’s begun potty training herself.  A little while ago I wrote about the timing and method of potty training we were going to use, and we had pretty much resolved to only ‘passively’ train her for now.  She’s only 20 months, after all!  So we got her a couple of DVDs – the Baby Signs potty training DVD – a format she’s already familiar with – and Elmo’s Potty Time.  I figure if she’s got to be in love with Elmo, he’s going to be useful. 

We’ve just got the TV up and running at the new apartment, and so before bed yesterday Karol got to watch the Elmo DVD again.  Today on the way back from Lori’s, Karol gestured to her diaper.  I asked her if she wanted a new diaper, or if she wanted to go to the potty.  She nodded at both suggestions.  We got in a few minutes later, and Karol went straight to the bathroom, lifted the lid, and asked me to help her with the rest!  So I got her shorts and diaper off and let her sit on her potty herself.  I didn’t really expect anything, but when she got up a couple minutes later, there was pee pee in the potty!  Of course, I flipped out.  We had to make a big deal about it, but Karol was surprisingly calm about the whole thing. 

So, I don’t think this is a miracle; we’ll still have a lot of work to do, but I guess Karol’s telling us we need to step it up on moving forward with the potty training.

April 16, 2009

My Hubs is Amazing

Filed under: Uncategorized — dcmom @ 5:37 pm
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I have to take a moment to give major credit to my wonderful husband Matt.  He has done at least 80% of all the packing, and is doing almost all the moving (hopefully) in one day today.  This is of course in addition to doing great in his schoolwork and being the best dad Karol and Patrick could ever hope for.  If you need further evidence of Matt’s daddy skills, just ask Karol.  This morning when I was getting her dressed, Matt walked in and she said “Yay, Daddy!” and insisted on him holding her before she put pants on.

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