Friday, August 31, 2007

Some of the words thus far…


Mama (finally!)

Uh-oh (He tried to say this word during his very first attempts at speech)

Maggie (pronounced Aggie - this was is first official word and "Daddy" was second)

Roxy (pronounced Oghy with a short "0" like ox)


Car (this is usually the word for anything with wheels: a car, a truck, a wagon, etc.)

Cookie (pronounced co-ka with a long “o”)

Cracker (pronounced ka-ka)

Truck (on occasion)

Mmmmm (when eating something yummy of course!)





Belly (pronounced beh and stated only in combination with patting himself on the belly)

Ahh? (as a question as if to ask, “what is that?” or “can I have that?”)

Ahhhhhh…(in combination with a smiles and a razz sound with his tongue on his teeth – this is usually a sound of mild laughter or being pleased with himself)

AHHHHH!!! (screamed in a moment of slight rage when wanting something that is out of reach)

Monday, August 20, 2007

Back to School

It’s back to school time in Memphis. The Professor heads back to work this week. Charlie went back to school on last week. And me, too…I’m headed back to school as well.

Over the past months I have been struggling with Project What Do I Want To Be When I Grow Up. I have considered many things from careers in healthcare for humans to healthcare for animals to more grant-writing/grant management possibilities, and I have even toyed with the idea of going to back to what I was trained to do – teach high school English. I have spent hours upon hours researching different career possibilities, determining what kind of education I might need for the different options. I have considered quitting my job to go back to school and go back to the life of living on student loans, digging my family into an even deeper financial debt. If I had a real passion to drive me back to that lifestyle, I would probably do it. But, since I do not have an intense passion toward any of these choices, another bout at long-term full-time school is not a viable option. It just isn’t worth the risk to me. And since I already live in extreme panic about the debt my finally already lives with, I really cannot fathom what acquiring more debt would do to my psyche.

Several months ago, while agonizing over my career (or lack thereof), I made the leap to apply with the Memphis City and Shelby County school systems. At the time, I truly felt like teaching was the choice for me, as long as I was in an okay school. See, the school systems in Memphis, particularly the Memphis City School (MCS) system, are not the most respected or supported school systems in the country. MCS’s system is struggling. Many of its schools are in urban environments with high poverty levels and the problems that come from high poverty levels. These tend to equal to difficult experiences for teachers. It is not an ideal situation to want to be a teacher in the city of Memphis. And since I moved back to this city (my hometown) five years ago, I have been hesitant about even applying for a job in our schools.

Since I applied for a teaching position last spring, I have gone back and forth and ‘round and ‘round about this whole teaching thing. I know that I want my career to be meaningful. I know that I want to be involved in the community and do something for the greater whole. I love English: reading, writing, studying language, etc. I even attempt to be a grammar snob. I remember diagramming sentences in elementary school and loving it. But (here’s the big BUT), I don’t know if I can handle or even want to deal with the stress of being a teacher because let me tell you, it’s a hard job.

A couple of weeks ago, a thought crossed my mind that I had visited about a year ago. ESL. English as a Second Language. I remembered talking to a neighbor who is an ESL teacher in the Memphis City Schools. At the time, he said that ESL is the best kept secret for teachers. He had nothing but positive things to say about it and he intrigued me enough to seek out more information. I went to an ESL informational session and learned that there is a high need for ESL teachers in our city, and with my background in foreign language and with my current teaching license, I was a perfect candidate. I only had to take a handful of classes to get the certification, but at the time, I was not willing to even consider any more school. But now, well, now I think I may have figured it out! It seems to be just what I needed. I only have to take 5 courses to get the add-on certification, and I get to take them ALL on-line if I choose to do so. Wow!

So, for the moment, I am energized about this opportunity. I have registered for classes which begin next week. And hopefully, by this time next year, I’ll be in one of Memphis’ struggling schools helping kids who don’t speak English as their primary language. I am excited to see my future in this career. Just keep your fingers crossed that I don’t hesitate and change my mind by Christmas!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Say Cheese

Charlie has always been one to humor his camera happy mother. He knows just how to turn on the charm when he sees then lens appear before his face. He often gets that look. You know, the look where he points his head slightly down and he raises his eyes as if to say, “I’m not sure I can trust you.” Well, he’s right. He can’t trust me with the camera because I am constantly snapping pictures of him and them on the Internet. What will he think of me when he’s 15 years old and knows that I’ve posted pictures of him for all the world to see? Pictures of him naked in the bathtub, photos with snot streaming down his nose, and heaven forbid a picture of him having a complete meltdown (such as the one below).

I guess I’ll just have to deal with that wrath later. Lately, Charlie has begun to modify his red carpet pose. Before, it seemed as if he would never smile for the camera. I would snap away to get the perfect shot of him and he wouldn’t smile until after I gave up and put the camera to rest. Now, he’s all smiles. Maybe it’s all those new teeth? Maybe he’s just trying to get me to put the camera away already! Who knows? Regardless of the reason, this boy is more than ready to hand out grins for the Nikon flashing in his face.

Self-feeding and happy feet

Pulling up (he can do it by himself now!)
Charlie and Maggie – his VERY best friend (although she doesn’t know it)

Charlie's first piece of intentional art

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

How I Spent My 8th Wedding Anniversary (continued from email correspondence post)

This final piece of correspondence was written to the Professor on May 30, the day after my 8th Wedding anniversary. By this time, I have already recovered from the barfing sickness, which stole 2 days of my life (on the weekend, no less). I have packed for our trip even though I have realized that there is little to no chance at all that we will get Charlie's passport in time to leave on June 1. Times were not good.

How are you? I hope your journey back to Ormskirk was uneventful and fast! Things here are going so-so. I had a pretty bad day yesterday and spent a lot of time pondering over that age old question of what the hell to do with my life. The good news is that we’re all packed! I’ve got everything in the bag except for bottles and toiletries. It’s definitely a relief to have that done. The bad news is that I still haven’t gotten Charlie’s passport. I spent most of last evening on the phone trying to get through to the passport people. I never got through. That place totally sucks! The other part of the evening was spent trying to soothe Charlie and washing Roxy.

When I picked Charlie up from school, he was obviously exhausted. He fell asleep in the car on the way home almost immediately. When we got home, we did our usual: play, eat, bathe, bottle, snuggle. I gave him some Dimetapp because his nose has been running for a couple of days (nothing major, though). I curled up with him on the couch and we looked into each other’s eyes for a while. He giggled when I rubbed his tummy and laughed when I stroked his cheek. And then, miraculously, he was asleep before 8:00.

At around 8:20, I decided to put him in his crib. I THOUGHT that he had been out long enough to be almost oblivious during the transition. WRONG! He woke up as soon as I stood up and started to cry. I put him in his crib and he started to scream. So, I held him. I tried to recreate the sofa snuggle, but that didn’t work. I rocked him. I took him outside. I turned on the sound machine and tried ocean and wind. Nothing worked. I decided to take him for a drive. His screaming was really relentless. I think he was in a bit of a stupor from the Dimetapp and it was making him feel weird. When I went outside to put him in the car, I let the dogs in. Roxy had rolled in poo, so I screamed at her and left her outside. We drove around for about 30 minutes and he continued to scream. It was awful and I was in tears. I finally gave up on the driving thing and went home. I put him in the big bed and he finally settled down. We looked at his books for about 30 minutes until I made him lay down. He quickly fell asleep. We lay there for a few minutes more, and then I put him in his crib. He cried a little when I first put him down, but I don’t think he had much fight left in him because he quickly fell back asleep. After I got Charlie taken care of, I washed the poo off Roxy and ended up giving her a full bath since she’s going to Kim’s.

When I finally got to bed just before midnight, I peeked in to check on him and he was face down and snoozing hard. He also had both legs sticking out through the slats of the crib. Because I’m crazy, I just had to readjust him. I really did it because I was afraid he might try to roll over or move and get stuck and start screaming again. So, I swiftly readjusted him and he hardly even noticed. I wanted so bad to take a picture of his feet sticking out, but I knew that would be dangerous. He looked a little like the Wicked Witch of the West after the house fell on her. I had to wake him up this morning, but I think he slept really well aside from the hour long screaming bout. No Dimetapp tonight, that’s for sure.

The next day, May 31 (my birthday) was spent at work, crying because I knew the passport wouldn't come. I spent the entire day scrambling trying to figure out some way to get this situation to go my way. Unfortunately, by around 3:00 I had to face the facts. I could either leave Charlie with grandparents and go on vacation without him. Or stay at home and ditch the vacation altogether. I decided on the latter - the decision was made on June 1 at 6:00 a.m. I arranged for Charlie to stay with my parents for the first week and the Professor's mom for the second. I can’t thank either of them enough for coming through on this one.

I then called Expedia to cancel Charlie’s plane ticket and see what could be done about transferring it to another time. Of course, the result of that phone call was disappointing. Basically, the ticket is valid for up to one year, it must be kept in Charlie’s name, and it must remain on British Airways (The ticket was on American but processed through British Air - huh?). That’s convenient. We’ll either have to eat the $1,000.00 that the ticket cost (because we have that kind of money just lying around in the sofa and in random drawers!) or plan a vacation somewhere in the UK by next June. Did I mention that every single flight we were on was on an American Airlines plane and that I never once even saw a British Airways plane or British Airways employee throughout the entire traveling process? I’m hoping that we’ll be able to work something out. Maybe Christmas in the Lake District? Spring Break in London?

We did finally get Charlie’s passport. It arrived sometime in mid-June while he was at a grandparent’s house and I was abroad. The government’s tightening of the passport rope for those traveling from Canada and Mexico was of course the cause for the passport delay, which was loosened while we were on vacation without our son. I guess I should feel lucky that I wasn’t one of those who missed their own wedding or honeymoon because of a passport delay. And really, our trip was probably better without our 1 year old in tow.

We actually got to celebrate our anniversary and my birthday while on vacation - at night, in a restaurant, and with wine. We celebrated in Ormskirk, Liverpool, Manchester, the Lake District, Whales, Dublin, and Galway. Had Charlie been with us, we would have been holed up in a hotel, probably with a bottle of wine and no corkscrew. Instead we repeatedly celebrated in restaurants with candlelight, wine in real wine glasses, hot food, and an infinite amount of time to linger.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

This may be my longest post ever

There is a perfectly good reason I have not yet written about my trip with the Professor in Ireland and the UK – the weeks leading up to it were 3 very difficult weeks of my life. They might possibly be the most difficult of my life. The Professor left on May 9 to begin teaching his class in Ormskirk, England. Had I the life I dream of having (SAHM), Charlie and I would have made the entire trip with him. But, since I do have to work and because I have limited vacation days, Charlie and I were not scheduled to leave until June 1. That equaled to 3 weeks and 1 day of single parenthood for me. I swear I do NOT know how single parents do that job every day. I feel extremely lucky to have a loving partner by my side.

In addition to the challenges of temporarily being a single parent, I also suffered through 3 weeks of what the excruciating bureaucracy of the passport office and customer service (if you can call it that) center. Apparently, if you do not submit the passport paperwork for your newborn six months before he takes his first breath in this world, he will never be able to travel abroad. Never ever. It takes that long.

So, while I haven’t yet organized myself enough to actually write about our trip, here’s a little (actually, it’s quite a lot) correspondence with the Professor to give a little insight into my life as a single parent/trying to get my son’s passport in time for our trip. I warn you now, this is long. And I really don’t expect anyone to read all of it. It’s mostly for me anyway.

[All of the following emails are excerpts of emails from me to the Professor unless otherwise indicated]

We miss you, too. Charlie has been a little extra fussy for the past couple of days. I think it's because he misses you and is wondering where the hell you are. But, I didn't mind the extra snuggle time this morning while trying to soothe him.

I'm glad to hear that your class went well. When I tell people about what you are doing, they inevitably say, "I want to take that class!" So, I guess to goes to say that if you offer that class next year, it will probably fill up quickly.

[Note: The class was a history of British Rock, with an emphasis on bands in Liverpool and Manchester.]

5/14/2007 (later that same day)

I went to the Outdoor's Outlet on my lunch break to look for a jacket. With the frigid air conditioning in here and our conversation about the cool weather there, I was motivated to find something. I found a nice Columbia fleece/water resistant jacket. I like it. I actually wish I had it on right now. And it cost half the amount of the jackets I found at the regular Outdoors.

Since I was saving so much money and because the only raincoat I could find for Charlie was like $50, I settled on buying him a super marked down fleece pullover. It is so soft and cuddly, and I am sure it will keep him warm while cruising in his stroller. Here's a picture of the fleece I got him.

[Note: I went to buy these items because of the Professor’s suggestion:
One suggestion, bring an umbrella and a couple of sweaters. It's chilly and has rained the majority of the time I've been here. Not heavy rain, but a constant light rain that you don't want to walk in for very long unless you want a wet head.
By the time I got to England, temperatures rose to the high 80s. The sun was blazing the entire time I was there. So, the need for a light jacket and fleece for Charlie was moot. Instead, I needed a pair of shorts and sunscreen. Did I pack those items, you ask? No.]

5/14/2007 (even later the same day)

I'm glad you are enjoying the posts. I'll try to put a little something on there every day. I'm looking forward to knocking back a few pints with you in less than a few weeks!

5/14/2007 (and even later)

[Below is from the Professor]


I just got back from Liverpool an hour or so ago. It was a nice way to spend an afternoon. The Beatles museum was OK, but I really enjoyed the Magical Mystery Tour bus that took us around to all of their birth places, Penny Lane, Strawberry Fields, and the Cavern Club. We might want to do it again when you and little C get here. Or at least, we can tour Paul's house. The bus tour guide said it is a nice tour, and it is close to Penny Lane, so you can see that too. As we were riding on the bus today, I was thinking about how much you and Charlie would have enjoyed it.

I just looked at Charlie's blog. Thank you so much for posting so many pictures for me. He looks so big in the pool! The Easy Way pictures are terrific.

I am sorry that I forgot to wish you a happy mother's day yesterday. Boy do you deserve it. I hope you know that I think you are doing a great job as Charlie's mother. He is very lucky to have such a caring and loving mother. I am lucky to have such a strong and beautiful woman as my wife. I hope we never have to spend another mother's day apart so that I can lavish you with the attention and pampering that you deserve on each and every one of them.

I am excited that you will be here in 17 days. I know the time will pass quickly. We are going to have a great time when you get here.

[My response]

I am tearing up as I read this - probably because I miss you and probably because I am tired. I'm having trouble getting to bed at a decent hour because of all the stuff I'm trying to do. Once I get Charlie to sleep, I still have to keep going with food and clothes for the next day, bathing the crap off of Roxy, dishes, etc. You know the drill. It's definitely harder without you, but we'll manage. I am looking forward to Sunday when I get to sleep in. Charlie will spend the night with my mom because Tiffany and Stephanie are taking me out for my birthday (this Saturday is the only time that everyone is in town at once). We plan to have wine, cheese and appetizers at Bari. YUMMY! So, Charlie will spend the night at Nana's, and I get to sleep in. Yea! But then I get to mow the lawn while he's still at her house. So far, the grass hasn't gotten too tall, but we had a big rain/thunderstorm this afternoon, which is supposed to continue throughout the night, so by Sunday, the grass will definitely be in need of a cut. Blah, blah, blah. I'm sorry I'm babbling; it's the sleepies.

I love you and miss you and can't wait to see you. I think the tour of Paul's house sounds nice! I've started reading Bryson's Notes from a Small Island and am loving it. He’s hilarious.


[The Professor wrote…]

I wish so much that I could be there to help out. I promise that I am going to do EVERYTHING for the rest of the summer when we get back. I'll make your lunch for you, iron your clothes. EVERYTHING. Please don't feel obligated to keep up with the blog every day for my benefit. I know you have tons else to do.

I'm happy to hear that you are getting a break this weekend for your birthday. I am jealous about Bari. The cafeteria food here got old after the second day. I have to run back to class.

I love you. You will be here soon.

[My response]

Thanks, baby. I didn't mean to complain; I'm just extremely tired. Still tired today, too. Yesterday, I vowed to do the minimal work and committed to doing a lot of sitting around last night. Of course, Charlie was not sleepy and didn't go to sleep until after nine. We sat on the couch and watched the season finale of Survivor.

While watching, Charlie was beginning to snuggle in and fall asleep. Then, BOOM, a big burst of thunder. We both jumped, and I immediately got up to get a flashlight. Once I had the flashlight, Charlie could not take his eyes off it. I finally just gave him the little one and he played with it and chewed on it for close to an hour. He finally fell asleep in my arms with the orange flashlight in his hand and resting on his lip in a drooly mess. It was cute, but I wasn't able to get a picture.


Sounds like you were in for a rough day. I hope the headache and dry mouth and sleepiness isn't too bad. I haven’t had any alcohol since Saturday. I think about getting a bottle of wine, but then I'm either too tired or I forget because I'm too tired, and by the time I remember, Charlie's already in bed. So, your not being here has kept me pretty sober.

Things here are ok. When I picked Charlie up from school yesterday, the teachers said he barfed twice - once he threw up entire lunch of peas and carrots and then he barfed a whole bottle later in the afternoon (He also threw up a little earlier that morning). I was worried, but when we got home, I made a point to just snuggle with him and take it easy. He didn't have a fever, seem particularly fussy, or even seem to feel bad. I gave him some fruit and he ate it all. Then crackers, which he scarfed down. He was hungry!

So, when I went to make him a bottle of milk, the thought occurred to me that maybe it was the milk. I had just opened a new carton of milk the day before yesterday - Tuesday (he also threw up a little on Tuesday morning). I bought two 1/2 gallons of organic milk on sale at Wild Oats (expiration date June 18). So, I decided to feed him straight formula last night and today to see what happens. So far, no more puke. Of course I sniffed the milk, which didn't smell particularly sour but didn't smell good either. But, it seems that when I smell something to see if it has gone bad, inevitably it smells foul. So, I'm just going to open the 2nd 1/2 gallon of milk tonight, and if that makes him puke, I'm taking it back to the store. From now on, I'm going to Easy Way and buying local and fresh milk. Screw the organic stuff - especially since it probably has to travel from California!

[It turned out not to be the milk but a nasty bug that everyone within breathing distance caught. I happened to get it the following weekend. It was so bad that I barely missed throwing up all over Charlie one evening after work.]


Thanks. I hope you have a good time on your trip. I think Charlie will be fine. My mom is taking him to the doctor this morning. Notice, it's 9:00 my time and I just got to work. Driving back and forth to Germantown is awful! How did we do that every day for so long?

I'm feeling pretty lousy today. I'm just tired but I've been tired for about a week now and it's catching up with me. I hope to be able to go home and get in bed early and sleep late. Hopefully Charlie will be feeling better and can have some milk in the morning. Then, we can snuggle up and go back to sleep!

Only 14 more days! Exactly 2 weeks from now, I'll be scrambling trying to pack out last minute items! Yea!

[Note: What I think is just being tired is the actual barfing sickness coming on.]


I am FINALLY starting to get excited about our trip! I've only got to get through this week, and then we'll be is as good as gone! I'm still a little concerned about Charlie's passport, though. But, in addition to starting a packing list (the first draft at least), I plan to do a little research on the passport. I found a place on-line where you can check the status, but I need Charlie's SSN to check it, and of course, I don't have it memorized yet. I'll check on it when I get home tonight.

Charlie seems be feeling better. No puking or diarrhea yesterday. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I don't get a call from school. We had a good morning. I was able to get up and get completely ready before he got up. So, we had plenty of time to hang out and laugh. When I was feeding him some apple sauce, he made cute little "yum, yum, um, um, yum" noises that made me laugh. Then, when I laughed, he would laugh, showing me all of his teeth. It was fun.


No sprouts, yet. But it's hard to tell with all the weeds. I did water last night. The poor hydrangeas looked like they might croak. I was amazed to go back outside just 20 minutes after watering, and the hydrangeas had perked up and looked as healthy as they ever have.

Things are going well here. Charlie was a bit of a shit this morning. He was really just in a bad mood because he woke up while I was in the shower, and I made him wait until I got my make-up on before going in there. He was screaming by the time I got there with a bottle of milk. I think that was just a hard way for him to start his day because he was in a bad mood throughout the feeding but perked up when it was time to dry my hair. By the time it was time to leave, he was in a much better mood. I dropped him at school only to find out TODAY that YESTERDAY he had another gigantic poo. They said the bananas might be making him constipated. The bananas that I have been feeding him to battle the diarrhea he had Thursday-Sunday. Of course I packed bananas again today but certainly would have packed something else had they informed me of his bowel obstruction YESTERDAY. Whatever. He'll eat bananas (mixed w/fresh peaches) today, and I'll saturate him with prune juice tonight. At least he's back on the milk which makes for a much happier Charlie.

When I got ready to head out the door of the his room, I leaned down to give him a hug and a kiss. He stood up, leaned against me and wrapped his arms around me in a tight hug and wouldn't let go. I'm sure he was just enjoying standing, but it felt like such a great big loving hug, I almost scooped him up and went home with him. But, the clock ticked and I was close to running late. So, I had to let him go. It was so sweet. You are going to LOVE his new hugging ability. I really can't wait until he sees you next week. He's going to be so excited! I can just see his little arms and legs pumping vigorously in anticipation of you hugging him.

I tried to call/email/online search about his passport yesterday. The on-line application status system is broken. It says something like, "if you receive this kind of # in your search, please call the 1-800 #." Of course I got the kind of status number they described. So, I called, and called, and called, and called. It's a very long recording detailing every way you can get passport information (and none of them seem to work at the moment). Then, the system asks you to hold and then you immediately get diverted to a message saying that all lines are busy, please call back. They are open until midnight eastern time. I called every 1/2 hour to hour from about 6:30 until 11:00 and got the same f-ing useless system every time. It won't even allow you to wait on hold! So, I filled out an email request form. Supposedly, I will get a response about the status of his passport in 2 days. But, if it's slated to be mailed on May 31, what am I do to? I can't get in touch with anybody!

I also called Congressman Cohen's local office and left a message asking for help. I'm trying not to freak out. My next step is to keep calling and ask the lady in our study abroad office if she has any pointers. Wish me luck!


I know you are on another exhausting excursion today, but I wanted to give you an update. I finally got through to the passport office (after hitting redial about forty times one after the other), and they told me that Charlie’s passport stuff is still in New Orleans at the processing center. Basically, the lady told me that she would send an email to the center to expedite his passport with a request that I have it in my mailbox by May 31. I have to call back on Friday to make sure the expedition is actually taking place. I asked the CSR what I needed to do if they had not in fact begun to expedite his passport. She said I would need to make an appointment at the regional passport agency – in New Orleans. WTF? Anyhow, I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that a) I can get through to them on Friday [Friday, the day the vomiting began for me], b) they have begun to expedite it, and c) it actually gets here before we need to leave. I just can’t believe the stress this is causing me. I’m trying not to get upset about it, but really. I can’t believe they are cutting it this close. The lady on the phone tried to assure me that this timeframe is actually “good in passport time.” I still don’t feel good about it. So, if I haven’t received it by next Wednesday (May 30), I’m going to call the airline and see what the penalty will be if we have to change our tickets.

In addition to my stress about the passport, I am also EXHAUSTED. Charlie did not go to sleep until 10:00 last night. Tiffany came over and I think he was just too into the fact that someone else was there that he wouldn’t go to sleep. He finally conked out in my arms just after 10:00. Tiffany left and then I got on the phone to try and reach the passport people. I finally got through after about 20 minutes of dialing and then waited on hold for 40 minutes, I kid you not. So, by the time I got off the phone with them it was after 11:00. I finally got in bed at around midnight. Then, Charlie woke up. He went back to sleep and woke up again sometime in the middle of the night, and then again at 5:30. He was really awake this time, so I got up and fed him, with hopes that he would go back to sleep. After his feeding, I decided that we both had to go back to sleep, so I called work and left messages that I would be late. We went back to sleep around 7:00 and slept until 9:00. I feel much better but I’m still tired. I think Charlie had bad gas. He was farting a lot and took a big poop and then kept on farting. Otherwise, he seems fine. I guess I’ll assume that his explosive farts woke him up in the middle of the night!

So, now I’m at work, tired, sad, and extremely annoyed by the day’s menial tasks that have and will get dropped in my lap.

You should check out Stephanie and Chip’s blog. They put some Charlie pics on there.

I love you and can’t wait to see you. Keep the good vibes going that Charlie and I will get to actually leave on the 1st!


It sounds like you had a nice trip. MMMMmmm! Gingerbread!! You know I'm sold!

I still haven't heard anything more about the passport, but I plan to call back on Friday as instructed. I'm trying not to get too nervous about it and even plan to call airlines if I haven't received it on Wednesday to see what my options are.

While I would LOVE to revisit Scotland, I think we should go for Ireland since neither of us has ever been. But, I think we could actually visit Scotland since we haven't really seen much of it anyway. That's a tough decision. I'll continue to mull it over.

Yesterday was a little rough. I was tired from the night before with Charlie. We got home last night (after trying to go out to dinner with Diana and ended up leaving because he began to fall apart) and he had another difficult evening of trying to fall asleep. I think he's just going through a horrible phase. He almost fell asleep on the way home, but by the time I got him in the house and in his pajamas, he was wide awake again. But he was exhausted. So exhausted that he could not go to sleep. I tried to hold him, rock him, sing to him, feed him, but nothing worked. He just sat there rubbing his eyes, crying, and arching backward in a defiant fight against what he needed - sleep. Anyway, I finally got into the big bed with him and rubbed his back, and he fell asleep around 10:00. When I put him in his crib, he woke again for a little while, but it was nothing to force me to pick him up again. He slept until it was almost time to leave this morning and when he got up his hair was sticking up in every direction (sorry, I didn't get a picture). So, I'm hoping that this good night's sleep will get him back on track. I think with his illness and diet changes (I think I was giving him too many bananas for the poopy belly and now I'm cutting him off bananas for a while) and a couple of routine interruptions (Tiff came over Tues. for dinner, I tried to take him out to dinner last night), he's just been a little off track. I'm sure he misses you, too, which could be causing him to be grouchy. Missing you is definitely making me a little grouchy!

I'm looking forward to this weekend. I plan to pack most of our clothes and work to get the house in order before leaving. I'm a little worried about the amount of room I will have in my bag; I'm afraid I will sacrifice stuff for me to leave room for Charlie and end up bring only one change of clothes! Regardless, I'm looking forward to preparing for the trip, getting away from here, and spending time with you.

To be continued…(if you are even reading anymore)

Wednesday, August 1, 2007


Last weekend, we headed to Atlanta to visit with Aunt Robyn, Uncle Seb, and their five pets: Jake, Benny, Moe (the bearded dragon), Jules, and Tye. We had a wonderful time lazing around their house and enjoying each other's company. It was a great visit, and we are so happy that they are closer so that we can spend a lot more time with them.
Charlie was a great sport during the drive there. He only insisted we stop for a break twice. I guess this is one of those moments that I can appreciate that he is still in diapers.

In the park near Robyn and Seb's house. So much Kudzu!

Clapping with Aunt Robyn

We also visited the Geogia Aquarium.
Charlie and Uncle Seb checking out the tropical fish
Asleep before we even made it out of the aquarium grounds

Reading with Mommy

Aunt Robyn lets me play in the sink
Greeting Maggie when we picked her up grom Gamie's on the way home.