Thursday, May 25, 2006

Cake, Wife Swapping, And Poop Sticks

It’s been a dang busy week here at the ranch. I can barely keep up with my hygiene routine much less this blogging. The following is a list of updates…

-The anonymous commenter on an earlier blog about the cake/vomit incident came forward and apologized for writing it. She didn’t mean for it to sound malicious and was completely kidding. Girl, you scared my husband.

-GoGo came to town last weekend to sit with the little one so I could go out of town for an overnighter with hubby to Houston. He had a gig and a hotel room, I had anxiety and hot flashes. It was the first time since Willem was dropped off by the stork that I spent the night away with daddy. Like all parents, we spent the majority of the trip talking about baby. Daddy played a show and was WONDERFUL and I’m not just saying that ‘cuz I like him and all.

-Let it be known that my child has somewhat gotten the hang of the military crawl and can walk with good balance while holding on with one hand. Little does he know that he is on the verge of being the next Forrest Gump…”Run, Forrest, run!” It’s awesome to see his tiny frame toddle across the floor at knee height. Now I need to teach him how to retrieve the remote and bring it to us.

-Casting call: I got a call from ABC’s Wife Swap TV show yesterday. They’re casting for their third season and are looking for a family that throws lots of lavish parties, events, etc. so if you know of anyone or you yourself would like to give this reality show a shot, shoot me an email. I have some info I can send to you. Seriously.

-All this week and last, I have been working with the event planning team on a three day vendor fair for a company in Round Rock who will remain anonymous but rhymes with the word “Bell.” The theme was Willy Wonka and was complete with giant candy props and a chocolate fountain. Some of the props we had commissioned to be built didn’t end up looking like candy. In fact they didn’t look like anything I’d ever want to touch. Here they are. Judge for yourself…

They were supposed to be chocolate dipped pretzels but as you can see there was no stopping the fact that we called them “poop sticks” all week. Thank you D for modeling with them for the camera.

Friday, May 19, 2006


I almost didn't have anything to blawg about today but thanks to comment number two to the previous blog, I do now.

One of the things I love about blogging is reading the feedback that is posted about what I have blogged. One of the things I love the MOST about blogging is reading the mean and nasty feedback that some people who like to remain "anonymous" (which is a total cop out by the way) post. It cracks me up that someone who obviously dislikes what I have to say takes precious TIME out of their life (that must be much better than mine because they have some ugliness to share) to say something negative. Bring it on. You keep me entertained. And thank you to all of the other comments shared by the other readers with names (and lives and interesting things to say). I know you people and you are wonderful.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Dining Out

I attended a luncheon yesterday at the Hyatt Town Lake with my business partner. We decided we needed to network more. The event was a room full of advertising types and various branches stemming off of that particular trunk. We exchanged a few business cards and shared abbreviated conversations with others sitting at the table but all in all, it was pretty boring. The speaker’s only saving grace was that he was British. What I enjoy most about these sorts of outings, though, has to do with the abundance of nonverbal dynamics that come in to play when participating in a group effort of this nature. Let me illustrate…

People are milling about in the lobby when we arrive so it takes way too much time to figure out which line is check in and when I finally do, I hope I’m not one of the schmucks that has to wear a handwritten version of the stick-on nametag because my credit card transaction didn’t get approved via the net when I registered for this thing. I stick on the paper nameplate and enter the ballroom in search of a table not too obviously in the middle of the room but with decent site lines. I want to be able to both see the speaker and hide if I needed to nap or something. We circle a table and I sit at the seat with the biggest slice of chocolate cake at the top of the place setting. People file in and I secretly vote for and against potential diners at my table. “No, no, no! You can’t sit next to me! Well, crap.” I mutter to myself.

There’s always an uncomfortable moment at each course, not including dessert, when the table can’t decide when to begin eating. When all of salads are down and we begin to graze. I make an effort to not look like a goat eating weeds and keep the teeth clear of green debris while talking to the person on my left. I also hope I don’t spew any food on him as we exchange info about our companies. The first course is quickly devoured and the second arrives and all but one person gets theirs. She must be the vegetarian at the table and we all steal glances at each other mentally urging the other to begin noshing without her veggie whatever. I finally dive in without looking up and the clink of my knife is like a dinner bell. Everyone eats. In the meantime, the featured speaker is at the podium wrestling with his Power Point presentation. He flashes pics of his kid over and over by mistake. I’m waiting for the “British Girls Gone Wild” series to pop up any minute.

The second course plates get cleared and it’s a huge noise of clattering and clinking, the server oblivious to the pauses the speaker keeps making because he can’t even hear himself. You’d think the server was trying to scare off bears or something. I inhale nearly all of my chocolate cake. I try and finish it I but stuffed myself on the previous course that was on a plate bigger than a record album. So much for picking the biggest slice of choco-love-me-and-my-thighs. Naturally, the food coma sets in soon afterwards and all I want to do is undo my pants, kick off my shoes (entirely because I already have them half way off), and grab a disco nap. I hear the speaker ask the group for any questions and out of the corner of my eye I see hands go up. This is the part I despise the most, especially the question askers that say, “Could you please go in to more detail about…?” Somebody hand me a dirty fork.

One of the perks of my job is that my business partner and me communicate via telepathy. After about the 5th “Could you go into more detail about…?’, she looks at me, I look at her, and we both quietly stand up, nod to our new found friends, and waddle off. I rip off the nametag like a band-aid on an open wound and burp.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


Last week I bid on and won a lot of “developmental” toys on ebay. I paid a bit more than I wanted to but when I factored in all of the time spent shopping in this dreadful heat, the road rage, and all of the gallons of gas I’d use to purchase said toys new, I just said, “To hell with it, I’m going to the wall on this bid. Competing bidders be damned!” A woman from Fed Ex shuttled the enormous box to my door and practically threw it at me. Evidently she was this close to driving her truck in to a tree because one of the toys with a Sesame Street-theme had fresh new batteries inside. “Elmo loves baby! Elmo loves baby! Elmo loves baby!” was what she heard for a few too many hours. Safe to assume that “Fed Ex lady hates Elmo!”

One of the toys in the grouping is a Fisher Price activity walker. It kinda looks like a shopping cart sans the cart. Now Willem doesn’t crawl yet but you insert a finger in each of his fists and he’s off like a dwarf on Red Bull. I attached his little hands to the handle of the walker and he shot off like he had tweaked an imaginary throttle. He was practically running to my closet and weaving out of control. Thank goodness this was all happening on carpet. I had to leap through the air like a panther attacking prey to catch up to him and stop the crazy forward momentum. He looked at me like, “What the heck just happened and how did I get here so fast. Can we do it again?’ Needless to say, this one toy is to be used under major supervision and on padded floors.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Rules Of The Road

Beat this Brittney Spears!

While her baby needs assistance when driving, my baby is a solo cruiser looking for the older ladeez. "Beep, beep, be back to pick you up later!"

Before baby was born, I wondered about the family car passenger arrangement that occurs when you have a child, the one where a parent is in the front seat driving and the other is in the back with baby. I liked the idea of being chauffeured around by my husband but didn’t realize the challenges that were bundled behind the driver’s seat. Most trips are short distances and the entertainment necessary to get baby from point A to point B becomes a rapid series of offerings to the tot within a brief period of time. Kinda like a blackjack dealer at a losing table. Longer distance trips revolve around nap times and when baby finally nods off, I hold my breath over each railroad track, pothole and Scorpions song turned up to 11 by the daddy driver. I eagerly grab the NY Times magazine from a week ago (because I never get to read anything all of the way through anymore) and steal a few precious moments of quiet cerebral entertainment. I sink into this coveted space only to be jolted back to reality because daddy has bad 80’s rock blaring. Although I request that the music be put on the front speakers only, I might as well be inside the woofer. He tries to draw me in to his one man party while looking at me in the rearview mirror with eyebrows raised above his sunglasses and singing in exaggerated falsettos. He yells out quips and quizzes (“Hey, did I tell you about Aerosmith? You know they would get completely messed up at their concerts and play the same songs at every show and decided to mix it up a bit by playing the last song first and the first song last and when Steven Tyler sang the opening song, he said goodnight to the crowd and left the stage. He was so trashed he thought it was the last song of the show!”) He tries to engage me, talking over the music and I wrestle with the desire to be in the front seat next to him like it was before baby came along and the desire to shut out the world for a minute so I can read a paragraph uninterrupted. Seems all, if any, of the free time I manage to carve out of a day undergoes tough scrutiny about how it should be divvied up. Should I file my haggard fingernails, should I nestle with hubby, should I go for a walk, or just hide and sit in silence? Unfortunately, none of those options are ever elected and I go, instead, to unload the dishwasher. It's stupid, really.

And now for a "baby on the road" pictoral...

"Do I really have to wear these sunglasses, mom?"

"Hot what does that mean?"

"Hey, who's that crazy looking kid in that little box thing?"

"He's kinda handsome..."

"Oh wait! That's me. Yup. I'm pretty cool."

Friday, May 12, 2006

I'm So Not HTML

So the links are up but now I have to figure out why some are one color and others are not. If I was colorblind, it just wouldn't matter.

Change Is Good, No?

I changed my template to this one because it was called "Tequila". No, really, I was just tired of the giant font in the other one and wanted to compress things a bit. I noticed that the new template didn't like my collection of links so I need to re-insert them. I have some new ones to add, too. Come back for more soon!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

In With The In Crowd

These days daddy is SO IN. I remember a time when Willem couldn’t be consoled by anyone but mama and his early relationship with his father was a bit estranged. Papa would go on the road to entertain the masses and upon returning, baby would have to relearn that this guy had some important role in his being on the planet and loved him as much as I did. This routine was heartbreaking and frustrating for proud papa and I could never leave the house for more than 15 minutes without receiving a harried call demanding my immediate return…”Yes, leave the grocery cart where it is and come home NOW!” Yesterday, however, we witnessed a moment of his growing affection for daddy while we were lying in the front yard on a blanket in the cool evening air. Willem had claimed my sparklely pink belt like a trout does shiny plastic bait (this was one of his best attempt at crawling I’ve seen yet!) and was getting it all good and soggy when he offered the tip of it to daddy’s chin four consecutive times. He then proceeded to lie down beside him and wrap his legs around his arm like a boa constrictor preparing his dinner. Daddy was all a-glow with delight. He also repeats “Da da” constantly while looking at him square on making daddy want to give him anything he wants in the whole wide world.

Since before Willem was born, I have been singing to him “Twinkle, Twinkle” and “ABCD”. Because they have the same melody, I thought he would pick them up quickly. I have, however, changed the words to “ABCD” so at the end I sing “Now I’ve said my ABCs, next time won’t you sing with MaaaaaMaaaaaa!” He loves it when I exaggerate the "mama" part but it will probably come back to haunt him when he sings it aloud with mighty gusto in school and says “Next time won’t you sing with MaaaaaaaMaaaaaa!” Yep, I better teach him some karate moves.

This intense and handsome little guy is Willem’s best friend in the whole wide world. Introducing Finnegan. Finn can crawl and has 6 teeth. He’s a two-handed waver and a grunter (something I attribute to the fact that he has that pacifier in his mouth often). He has a very kind nature, just like his mom, and he and Willem play peacefully together. Earth Mama said that when they came over the other day the boys embraced each other briefly, something they’d never done before. They are at the stage now where they are showing interest in each other and explore the proximity issue like two dwarfs without depth perception. Can't wait until Willem is mobile and can keep up with his little buddy. Better get on that child proofing project soon.

Monday, May 08, 2006

What? No Baby Picture? Puleeze!

Here's a shot of the whole famdamnly for good measure...

Odds And Ends

I can’t seem to get my poop together to stay on top of this blogging thing. Part of the problem stems from the fact that I like to post pictures to support the written nonsense but I lost a package of batteries to the camera ($17.99!) and was being stubborn about buying more but I went to Target today and, voila, problem solved. Talk about “Living In The Red” as the Target jingle goes. I also bought a big blue ball for Willem because Lord knows he won’t have enough of those in his future. I couldn’t leave without some candy, gum, a shoe rack for the closet that hubby requested (yes, he has many pairs of shoes, most he shares with Guy Fantasy), and some goodies for this precious new member of our family…

“World, meet Isabella Zuniga. Bella, meet the world!” She's got some sweet cheeks!

She is the little sister of Paloma and the child of hubby’s brother who is number ten in a family of ten.

Another reason I haven’t been blogging is because nothing much has been happening lately. We cleaned the house spotless yesterday. *Yawn* Hubby busted his hump and made piles of things mysteriously disappear from the places they had been living for months. I’m sure it was all stuffed in drawers and closets but the end result was impressive. They say if you don’t want to be asked to do something then do it poorly. Daddy’s in trouble now. I went to see a play called Bad Dates with some girlfriends on Saturday and thank goodness they weren’t bad dates because the play was a stinker. At least I got to steep in some sassy estrogen.

We’ve wrestled a few cahrazy storms in the area the past few nights. One of them had winds racing through the neighborhood at 70 mph with marble-sized hail peppering the landscape. We only lost one large tree branch but it barely missed daddy’s car. He’s terrified of storms where I could be a storm chaser in an instant. I’m also the kind of person to say “Oh my gosh, you gotta come seeeeee this!” and when daddy is timidly inching up to the door for a peek at the storm activity, I poke him in the side and yell “Boo!” or Sssstttt!” or something to make him jump out of his skin. Yeah, it’s sorta mean but I have two younger brothers. Need I say more?

Speaking of spooking brothers, I remember a time when my youngest brother who was about 3 at the time (and is 16 years younger than I am) was just fresh from a bath and standing butt naked in his closet looking for what, I haven’t a clue. I decided to don a short brunette wig and pop in to say hi but little did I know that it would scare the bajeebus out of him and I’d have to practically untangle him from closet debris. I sounded like his sister but looked like Viola Swamp. I don’t think he’s ever dated a short-haired brunette in his life, come to think of it.

A girlfriend sent me a link today to where you can find out the amount of alcohol in your breastmilk and then decide if you should feed it to your baby or just drink it yourself because, hey, why waste perfectly good alcohol? Just add some coffee liquor and you've got an awesome White Russian!

On that note, don't you wish I really had something significant to write about? I'll try harder next time.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Elmo's World

Yesterday was my 37th birthday and I didn’t have a problem turning a year older. Not one bit. In fact, I embraced it like I would a porcupine. For my special day, I got over thrush and the cold baby gave me, my house and the detached studio was cleaned by an army of ladies, God bless their hardworking souls, and Saturday night, the Alabama nanny of yore and her sig other showed up ready to babysit so daddy could take me out to get rip roaring…I mean…to enjoy a lovely evening as a couple. It’s been a while since we have made the time to be together, just the two of us, and I am reminded of how important it is. As strong as my marriage may be, it’s extremely hard to maintain wedded bliss with a third family member in the house who would prefer to be attached to my body by any means possible. Add to this working full + time and daddy living the starving musician lifestyle and it becomes a battle of nerves, a war of egos, and lessons in the art of drinking in the closet late at night. We have agreed to make date night a weekly event no matter what. This will end up being cheaper than couples therapy if we can keep the expensive French wines off of the dinner tabs.

We revisited the Ferber Method with baby last Saturday and began the series of letting baby cry at night in loosely timed increments with no late night snacking (Thank you to Brent and Kristen for the lessons in successful Ferbering!). Daddy is the chosen one to go check on things when he squawks at night. It’s great for me but I lie there wide awake listening to the goings on with my super-sonic mommy hearing and yearn to race down and make it all better, i.e. insert boob. The first night wasn’t too bad. Willem woke up maybe three times and cried only a little. Sunday night was rough as he awoke in 15-minute clusters to cry and cry. Daddy was managing the scene from 1 a.m. until 4 a.m. patting his back, reinserting the pacifier and exiting the room. Last night, however, baby awoke at his usual feeding time (4 a.m.), screeched loud enough for me to shoot up out of bed like a rocket but then he didn’t make another peep until 7 this morning. For the first time since I was 7 months preggers, I ALMOST had a full night of uninterrupted sleep! It’s an amazing notion to consider and I pray we have perfect luck tonight although I probably just jinxed it by saying that. One downfall of this arrangement is that I practically float downstairs like an inner tube on the Guadalupe with boobs on the brink of hosing down the house.

On another baby note, Willem has yet to sprout any teeth but continues to drool like Pavlov’s dogs. He isn’t crawling yet either which is a mixed blessing. He can, however, pivot in a circle while sitting on his padded bum like an infant break dancer. He’s still maniacal about walking with parental assistance, which is completely cute, but not a solo endeavor on his part. Oh, how my back aches! We do still encourage tummy time but it really gets Willem’s fur in a dander and he fusses with deep frustration. He loves to make fart noises on my shoulder, if it’s bare, and successfully unhinges his diapers if left in his crib awake too long. He and I stollered over to Mandola’s, an Italian market in our neighborhood, Saturday morning and shared a bear claw while watching the water splash in the fountain on the patio. It was a quiet morning, just us and the grackles. Piglet, who I thought we had lost in Spain at a ham market, fell out of the stroller en route but was discovered on our return in the middle of the street with tread marks and a crumbled rattle in his head. He has now joined Sock Monkey on the island of rehabbing toys.

So daddy is home for two weeks straight and we are playing family to the fullest. It’s so nice to grill out, watch a movie and turn in at nearly the same time each night. I had gotten use to being a single working mom but I prefer married working mom/wife much, much more.