Growing a Critter

We’re growing him on the outside now

She’ll love this December 6, 2007

Filed under: family,holidays — crittermama @ 9:00 pm

Finally, a picture of the critter with his Dede, taken at Thanksgiving

Dede and Critter smiling


Parenting Hurts December 3, 2007

Filed under: body weirdness,health,holidays — crittermama @ 6:19 pm

I knew about the lack of sleep that would come with being a new parent, and the possibility that many days would come and go without my benefitting from a shower. I knew that there would be late nights worrying about something or other. I knew that we’d struggle with setting the right boundaries, and that someday, we’d be up all night waiting for the teenaged critter to come home. What I didn’t realize is that parenting is one big repetitive stress injury waiting to happen.

Both Dave and I have tennis elbow and creaking knees and NOW I’ve got some sort of strange tendon thing in the first knuckle of my left index finger. What is THAT?!? And how did that happen? When I rotate my left wrist, I can feel a popping in my left elbow. I know this is because of how I’ve held the critter while nursing him and that I tend to hold him in my left arm when we’re bouncing, dancing or swaying. But what the heck is going on in that joint and how do I get it to go away? I suspect that the critter will continue to require food, comfort and mama-induced motion, so… now what?

In his (HIM!) health news, we had our follow up with the pediatric GI doc today. I’m to continue with the dairy restrictions, especially since we saw a spot or two of blood last week in his diaper following my inadvertent consumption of some whey-containing bread. But the doc said that I should “challenge” it again before we come back for our next follow up in 3-4 months. He also said I could probably have a piece of cake if I were at a birthday party but… yeah, I’m not going to do that. So no buttery, creamy holiday goodies for me! Unless they’re vegan. Got any vegan goodies for me?

Of course you all want to know about his stats, right? Here you go:
Head circumference: 16.75 inches
Length: 24.5 inches
Weight: 16.5 pounds

Oh yeah!


Fryin’ a turkey November 26, 2007

Filed under: friends,holidays — crittermama @ 8:23 pm

Ok, so before I get to the details of Thanksgiving in the Carpet Capital, I just HAVE to share more about the turkey fry that our friends Matt & Lynne hosted. See, you get yourselves a turkey or two. Here’s Matt showing off one of two turkeys they procured for the occasion…

I'mon fry me dis turkey

Yes, I posted this picture the other day. But I *didn’t* get to post Matt lowering the turkey into the oil…

Into the boiling oil with you!

Or the video of that turkey fryin’ up reeeeaaal nice…

Fryin’ a turkey from natalie on Vimeo.

It was wonderful!


Thankful November 25, 2007

Filed under: family,friends,holidays,home training,travel — crittermama @ 1:29 pm

I’m beginning this entry from gate B-25 of the Atlanta airport. It’s 7:39 in the AM, and we arrived more than two hours early for our flight, just in case! We didn’t have to stop on the way down to the airport – a big relief. It took us 3 hours just to drive from the airport to the Carpet Capital on the way down!

I’ll keep with tradition and list some of the things I’m thankful for at Thanksgiving:

* My boys. Dave and the Critter are both pretty amazing. I love them both, in very different ways. I can stare at the Critter for hours, but Dave’s a more sophisticated conversationalist. Not that the Critter isn’t engaging, and he is working on his vocabulary! And they both have their own way of making me laugh.

* My family. I have two hilarious, supportive sisters and two loving parents that still love each other. The Eubanks family is wonderful, and I can’t wait to introduce Noah to his uncle, great-grandparents and great-uncle at Christmas. Support from the extended family has been wonderful and we love the emails of encouragement!

* Our friends. We’ve been incredibly blessed with wonderful friends who continue to check in on us, even when we haven’t (found time to) made the effort to call or write them. So many wonderful people helped us out when the critter was born, and we’re massive indebted to all of them.

* Our new friends at GKS (Greenbelt Krabblestrube, which means “crawling location”). We’ve really enjoyed our neighborhood babysitting cooperative, and have learned a ton from everyone on how to deal with different challenges Noah throws our way. It really is wonderful to have such terrific people in our neighborhood going through similar things together.

* Our neighborhood and house. We’re currently trying to convince the Alaska-dwelling part of my family to move here with the Mooselet. I think North Carolina might be as close as we get.

* Good healthcare and good insurance. Not everyone has this, and many have much greater need than we do. We are, of course, also thankful for our good health and the relatively easy challenges that we’ve had.

* Jobs we love and supportive coworkers. We’re challenged by what we do, and continue to find new ways to get our creativity and problem solving engaged.

* A sense of humor. We need it!

* The grace of God, who has given us all of this while we did nothing to deserve it, but who challenges us to give back and to reach out to people everywhere. For the past few years at Christmas, our “gift to the planet” has been to help support an orphanage in Malawi run by a colleague of mine. Most of the children there are AiDS orphans, and every little bit given goes an incredibly long way. I want to give even more this year, as a thank you for Noah and all of the joy that he brings to us. Let me know if you’re interested in hearing more about the orphanage – they could use the help.

Finally, here are a few pictures from Thanksgiving:

The Critter and his Great-Granddaddy

Aunt Melisa trying to steal the baby

Matt, frying a turkey last weekend
Into the boiling oil with you!

High school reunion brunch – mamas and our progeny
Our progeny

Videos coming soon!


3 months old! November 19, 2007

Filed under: development,family,holidays — crittermama @ 8:54 am

Well, he’ll be 3 months tomorrow, but I’ll be at work and won’t be able to post anything. The critter is growing like a weed, and changing all the time, as detailed in Dave’s previous post. Right now, he’s enjoying his activity mat while I sit next to him and type this. He likes the music and is watching the dangling ladybug very closely. He’s not yet as mobile as his cousin is, but I’m sure it’ll be here before we know it.

He smiles all the time now. And he’s found his hands, which he very carefully watches as he slowly brings them to his mouth. And we think he’s crying less now that our friend CJ got him to take a pacifier (thank you, CJ!). The big trick now is napping. I did get him to go to sleep last night without nursing him to sleep. That was a big accomplishment! I saw the sleepy signs, I sang to him and gently danced around, put a pacifier in his mouth, and he fell asleep in my arms. Not in a crib, mind you, but we’re taking things one step at a time. I do feel like we’re making some sleep progress most days.

The big activity over the next couple of days is getting ready for our first flight with an infant. Holy cow! There’s so much to think about! Thankfully, we don’t have a layover, but we will have a 2-hour drive once we get to the Atlanta airport. Dave’s in charge of figuring out how to work the car seat in a car that’s not ours. We did figure out what size disposable diapers to use, but I’m not sure whether we should use them just while we’re in transit, or whether we should use them the whole time we’re gone.

We’re really excited about going to visit my family for Thanksgiving. And of course my parents and sister Melisa are excited to see the critter. Dave and I are just the baby delivery systems – we know, it’s ok. I talked to sister Allison last night and we’re trying to figure out when we’ll get the boys together. And we’re going to Memphis for Christmas. It’s going to be great to be with family for the holidays!

Here’s the boy when he was first born:

going home outfit.JPG

Unbelievable how much he’s grown! (Yep, 97th percentile for weight, last time we checked) Here’s a picture from a couple of weeks ago.

ain't he purty?

His smocked day gown was made by our family friend Mrs. Sponcler. Beautiful!


Happy Halloween! November 1, 2007

Filed under: holidays — crittermama @ 6:49 pm


We neither went trick-or-treating nor gave out candy. But we did dress up the baby in a costume!


Milestones, of sorts October 22, 2007

Filed under: family,friends,holidays — crittermama @ 7:46 pm

The boy is now two months old, and still growing strong – well, WE’RE getting stronger, since we’re the ones lifting and holding him all the time. His 2-month checkup is Tuesday, and I full expect him to weigh in in the 99th percentile. At eight weeks, he was already FOURTEEN pounds. So I’m betting that he’s at least 15 pounds tomorrow.

The critter had his first visit to a pumpkin patch this weekend, with our friends the Rhodys. We have an annual “date” with them a few weeks before Halloween, picking pumpkins, enjoying the festival, and watching the young ones grow. Evie showed that she has a bit of a collector in her, as she would spot a choice pumpkin, pick it up, and add it to the growing collection in the wagon.

By the end of our visit to the patch, I swear she had about 15 in the wagon! I’m glad I wasn’t the one to tell her she could only choose one.

Dave and I were masters of the camera during this excursion, and took about a hundred pictures. Of course we had to get a family portrait amongst the pumpkins…


…and we had to get some pictures of the critter by himself. He still can’t fully hold his head up and certainly can’t sit up by himself, so we propped him up and started snapping away. And he began sliding… and sliding… and looking more and more grumpy, until this happened.

And it’s my favorite picture of the day! Hee.

More pictures soon – including pictures of him dressed as a girl and as a communist. And no, neither of those are his Halloween costumes.