Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Years Eve Eve

Nanny and Pop went back to England today. It was very sad to see them go. The boys will really miss them. Pop was here for ten days longer than Nanny - to help me out after the hubs broke his shoulder. The Chipmunk will miss him the most - mostly because he won't understand what is going on.

The hubs and I are trying really hard to convince them to move here, and it looks like it might actually happen - at least more than it's ever been a possibility before.

We can only hope, right?


Monday, December 28, 2009


2009 has been really hard for me. I have been struggling with depression. And, even though I've been struggling with it so much, I've done nothing to seek help. Everytime I think about admitting I need help, I start feeling better, so I do nothing.

One of the reasons why I don't end up seeking help is because I don't think I can find the time to commit to it. I know that sounds like a cop-out, but it seems like everything has been going wrong this year.

The last time I wrote about the Chipmunk it was about how we had gotten a second opinion on his gagging problems. Well, the procedure was so traumatic for him I didn't feel like I could write about it afterwards. And, all that came out of it was a firm diagnosis of the reflux we've known he's had since he was about two months old. He has since gotten much, much better at keeping foods down, but he still has reflux, and is so underweight that he completely fell off the weight chart for kids his age. His weight issue doesn't seem to be too much of a result of his reflux, but more of a result of the problems he's had in the last few months.

In September, he had Roseola for a week. He didn't eat at all that week. Three weeks later, he had Roseola - again. Again, no eating for a week. At the end of October, he had surgery to correct an undescended testicle (that we didn't even know about until we saw the nurse practitioner at his 15 month well visit in September), he didn't eat for two weeks after that. Let's not forget the normal not-eating that occurs when any baby gets a new tooth.

The end of November brought us to the ER for the third time this year when my husband broke his shoulder on Thanksgiving morning.

Not everything has been bad this year. I've managed to lose 30 pounds, and I'm committed to start losing again after the holidays. The Monkey lost his first tooth. And, the Chipmunk is the most loveable little creature I've ever met. Also, I got an iPod Touch for Christmas - so I hope to do more writing here.

Anyway, I just wanted to get something written so I might be able to get a little momentum going.

I hope your year went well and I hope to get back to this blog soon.


Monday, June 29, 2009

Ladies First!

The Monkey just told me that the next time we go out to the car I should go first. I asked him why, he said it's because ladies should always go first.


He said he saw it on Lady and the Tramp.

See, some television is a good thing.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Second opinion on the Chipmunk!

Last weekend was tough!  Friday was the first day the Chipmunk had just milk in his bottles - according to his sheet from daycare, he did just fine.  Before Friday we were slowly reducing the amount of formula and increasing the amount of milk in his bottles - he was doing fine with this, so it made sense to do away with the formula altogether.  Unfortunately, he refused to take more than 2 ounces on Saturday, and 4 ounces on Sunday.  Also, on Saturday, he refused to feed his Gerber addiction.  Thankfully he came to his senses on Sunday and ate solids, even though we still couldn't get him to drink anything.  By the end of the weekend the Chipmunk was a basket case (as were we).
So, on Monday I called the Pediatrician and told them that I thought his reflux was acting up.  They asked me why I thought that and told them what he had consumed in the last 48 hours and how he was acting whenever I tried to get him to drink anything (in pain, wanting to drink but as soon as the bottle was in his mouth pulling away and screaming). 
Needless to say, I got the green light to bring him in right away.  By doing this, I accidentally got a second opinion on his eating problems.
It turns out the appointment I brought him to on Monday was with the Physician's Assistant.  Not only was she concerned with the amount that he had ingested over the weekend, but she was very concerned about his weight overall.  Apparently, the bare minimum they like to see at 12 months is that the baby has tripled his birth weight.  The Chipmunk was born at 6 pounds 13 ounces - triple that would be 20 pounds 7 ounces.  The Chipmunk was only 19 pounds at 12 months and 5 days.  Obviously, he's not even close to what their bare minimum for weight gain is.
Another thing that had her concerned was the fact that he had obliterated their other bare minimum for weight gain at his 6 month check-up.  At 6 months, they like to see a doubling of the baby's birth weight.  Double his birth weight is 13 pounds 10 ounces - he was over 16 pounds at 6 months.  According to the PA for him to slow down this much just as solid foods are being introduced is a huge red flag that something is wrong.  Why didn't his regular doctor pick up on this?!  Who knows. 
The upside of all this though is the Chipmunk has some sort of swallow study scheduled for Tuesday.  According to the person who scheduled it the Chipmunk has to drink a bottle of Barium for the radiologist to be able to watch as it goes through his digestive system on an x-ray.  I don't see this being very successful since I can't get him to drink a bottle of milk - how the hell am I supposed to get him to drink something he's never had before?  However, if we are successful with getting him to take the Barium and end up finding out that something is wrong we're going to be in the market for a new doctor. 
Any suggestions on how we go about doing that?  Clearly our current technique of choosing someone (walking into the closest one to our house and finding out if they are accepting new patients) hasn't worked.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Why do I have to be right all the time?

Boo - I was right
The Chipmunk hasn't even reached 19.5 pounds.  In fact, he's only 19 pounds.
This puts him in the 5th percentile for weight - he was in the 45th at his 9 month check-up.  Why such a huge drop?
I'm sure this is because he can't keep most solid foods down.  If he would just quit puking, I'm sure he would put on some weight.  At the rate he's going, he will still be facing backwards in his car seat when he's 18 months old.
The doctor doesn't seem concerned.  His exact words - "he's a got a skinny brother, why should he be any different". 
Yes, his brother is skinny.  But, at least the Monkey has managed to stay on the same growth chart each time they weigh him.  The doctor didn't even appear as if he wanted to talk about it.  As soon as I brought up his eating issues and the fact that he doesn't drink as much milk as he needs to the doctor started to leave.  As I continued to talk about it, he was in the doorway of the exam room with the door open and getting ready to walk away.  That made me so angry!
I just don't know whether or not I should be worried.  Hubby says that since the doctor isn't worried, then neither is he - after all, the doctor has been doing this for a long time, we should trust his judgment. 
But what if he's wrong?  What if something is actually wrong with the Chipmunk?  I realize he hasn't lost any weight, but half a pound gain in three months?  Surely that should be sounding some alarms - at least they are for me.  I just don't know what to do about it, if anything.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

You want what now?

The daycare we send the kids to is a home-based daycare, certified by the state, run by a woman named MJ.  She has three boys of her own.  In addition to our two boys, she has three other boys attending daycare.  So I guess you could say she knows boys.  Obviously, she's had her own boys since infanthood, but she has also had two of the other boys since they were itty bitty (not including the Chipmunk).  So I guess you could say she also knows how baby's work - although she is a little perplexed by the Chipmunk's problems with eating (as are we). 
Even though his eating problems are annoying, we've all been dealing with them.  We tell her if we've tried anything new and whether he was able to keep it down (normally we don't have good news for her), and she tells us if she's tried anything new and whether he was able to keep it down.  She's normally more successful than we are with the introduction of new foods.  So far, she has been able to get him to successfully eat Cheerios and any type of cracker (saltine, club, cheez it, get the idea).  She has tried cheese, pancakes, mac-n-cheese, and a grilled cheese sandwich (in itty bitty pieces).  All of these were immediately puked back up.  So, as much as I would love for him to give up his Gerber addiction, it's currently really the only way for him to get his nutrients.
Because of her state certification she is subject to home visits from the people running the program (I'm assuming this is to make sure she isn't beating the kids or something like that).  During the last few months the person visiting has been able to witness the problems the Chipmunk has with most table foods.
Also because of her state certification she gets to participate in the USDA food program.  This means that she is able to get her weekly food bill subsidized for the meals that the daycare kids eat while they are under her care.  This program has been especially useful for us since it meant that we didn't have to provide formula for the time that the Chipmunk was there - this practically cut our formula budget in half!  On the other hand, we still have to provide the baby food he eats while he is there.  However, now that the chipmunk is one he appears to be under different guidelines for what he is supposed to be eating. 
When we picked the kids up yesterday we had note waiting for us stating that we needed to provide a doctor's note to MJ to be able to continue feeding the Chipmunk his Gerber goodness. 
Say what now?!
I need a doctors note to provide the food that I want my child to eat?
Apparently, according to the USDA program guidelines, he's supposed to be getting all of his nourishment from regular table food and milk.  And anything that differs from these guidelines needs to be approved by a doctor in order for MJ to remain in the program.
The last time I brought up the subject of the Chipmunk's super sensitive gag reflex with the doctor was at his 9 month well-baby check-up.  The doctor's response "oh, my son did the same thing - he'll grow out of it eventually".  Yeah, thanks - I didn't really think he'd still be eating Gerber's in College. 

I get the feeling I'll get laughed out of the doctors office when I bring up my request for signed permission to continue feeding my child baby food.  Based on previous experience with the guy, once he finds out that the Chipmunk is able to tolerate Cheerios and crackers he'll refuse to sign such a request.  After all, if he can tolerate those other things he should be able to tolerate everything else.
I feel like I should lie to the doctor and tell him that the Chipmunk's not able to keep anything down.  On the other hand, I feel like I should tell the doctor the truth.  Unfortunately, I feel like telling the truth would result in not getting permission for the food that he needs while he is at daycare.  My logical side tells me to tell the guy the truth, because who knows what that might tell him medically.  But I really don't want the Chipmunk to become malnourished - or worse (is it really worse?), end up in the hospital because he can't keep anything down.  I especially don't want him to start hating food because he starts throwing up every time we sit him down to eat.  I honestly have no idea what to do.  We didn't have this problem when the Monkey was a baby - at this age he ate anything that was put in front of him (unlike now, when he exists solely on water and air). 
Maybe we should hope that the water and air diet works for the Chipmunk too - that just seems like the logical next step to me.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Guess the baby-weight

Our main car is a Dodge Neon.  It's supposed to seat five.  I say the only way it's going to seat five is if it's two adults and three very small, not in any type of car/booster seat, children.  So really, it seats four with room for jackets.
Hubby and I commute together practically everyday.  This means that all four members of our family squeeze into the (very small) family car at least twice a day (it's especially funny when we have to go to Costco or Lowe's). 
The Chipmunk is still facing backwards in his car seat, even though he turned 1 yesterday and could theoretically be turned around.  To accommodate the rear-facing car seat the front passenger has to ride sitting straight up with his/her knees up against the dashboard - this is safe, right?  We're waiting until his one year check-up on Friday to determine if he has reached 20 pounds yet.  At his nine month check-up he was only 18.5 pounds, so there's a good chance that he hasn't made it (especially with all the puking and teething he's been doing lately).  As much as I would love to turn the seat around, I do want to make sure the Chipmunk has reached the appropriate weight to do so. 
I'm guessing he's not 19.5 pounds yet, let alone 20.  How much do you think he weighs?


My camera is dead. 
It's been dying for a few months now, but there was always some way to bring it back to life.  Right now it's on life support when it really shouldn't be.  It can't take pictures at all, though it can show you what's on the memory card.  That's not what I want, or need from it.  It lasted for just over 5 years.  I think it's lived a good life.
I was so disappointed yesterday when I wasn't going to be able to take a picture of the Chipmunk trying to figure out what that hot glowing thing in front of him was (it was the candle on top of the cupcake he puked up).  We gave the Monkey a really cheap digital camera for Christmas but we hadn't seen what it can produce until right before we sang Happy Birthday to the Chipmunk.  It's crap.  All of the pictures look like they were taken by someone in a car that was going 60 mph.  We ended up using a disposable camera the Monkey had been given from my in-laws, but who knows if the pictures will actually come out (or if we'll even bring it to be developed). 
So, I'm looking for a new camera.  I want a DSLR, but I really can't afford one.  Of the cheaper varieties I have seen, none of them come with a lens - I think they're kind of important, right?  Can I use the camera without a lens?  Also, if I could afford a cheap to mid-range one, which one would be the best?  Also also, can DSLR's shoot video?  Or, will I have to get a different device for that?
I hate that the camera chose now to completely crap out.  I don't want to go back to my 35mm.  I like the instant gratification of knowing whether or not what I took is the shot I wanted.   I don't want to be a professional photographer or anything, but something decent would be great.  I'm desperate right now and I don't think that's the best attitude to go shopping with since I'll probably end up getting whatever looks nice but might not do what I want.
So - help me choose a camera.  If it means that I'll have to wait until our tax return next year, then so be it...I guess.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Happy Birthday, Chipmunk!

One year ago, at this very moment, you were ripped out of the womb you had made your home. You were so in love with this place that you decided that an extra 6 (six!) days inside was appropriate. You probably would have liked longer but some doctor got it in her head that you were in distress and had to come out RIGHT NOW. She was probably right, you know. After all, she did have a lot of schooling to determine what was best for you (and only you).

I can't complain about your extended stay in my body too much, at least in there I knew you were well taken care of. Also, you managed to let the Monkey keep his birthday all to himself. Once you were out though, you were all on your own - and you weren't great at it to begin with either.

At first, you needed CPAP to help you breath, but were shortly able to adjust to a nasal cannula. I don't think you liked it very much. You managed to pull it out of your nose every chance you got. Unfortunately, you had to have it attached to your face at all times until you were 11 weeks old. That's a long time for you - almost a quarter of your life so far. The doctor kept telling us that if we were living at sea level you wouldn't need it. He told us this so many times that I finally asked him if he would like us to move, and I was serious. He didn't say anything after that. Thankfully, you were taken off of the supplemental oxygen and haven't looked back.

I've been worried about the damage the lack of oxygen has done - if any. It's probably still too early to tell, but I don't think you are going to have any problems (hopefully I didn't just jinx you). You have managed to do everything before your brother did. You were rolling over before you were three months old - the Monkey was six months. In fact, you started rolling just a few days after the supplemental oxygen was removed - I'm so glad you waited, I can't imagine the trouble you would have gotten into if you had gotten tangled in the oxygen tubing! You were crawling at seven months - the Monkey was almost eight months. I can't remember when you started sitting, but I'm pretty sure that was before your brother too. You haven't started walking yet so I think the Monkey will have you beat here. You're trying to walk, and are taking a few steps, but if you want to beat your brother you're going to have to take 23 steps all on your own within the next three days - I just don't see this happening. Go ahead, prove me wrong! Although you're excelling in physical areas, you are not yet able to show us whether the oxygen deprivation has affected your cognitive ability. I guess only time will tell here.

You are a very serious baby. It takes a lot to make you laugh. But when you do, it's the best sound I have ever heard.

You are still having trouble eating food that isn't pureed into an itty bitty pulp. Hopefully you will outgrow this soon. I felt so bad when we tried feeding you a cupcake tonight and you puked up the entire contents of your stomach! You were doing ok at first, but the 4th bite sent you over the edge. You love food so much, it doesn't seem fair to withhold the good stuff from you. We thought that you'd be able to handle the cupcake in very small pieces because you are now able to eat Cheerios and some crackers. At least, as long as you've had nothing else in the last hour you're able to eat these things without throwing up. I hope you get over this soon, you look so desperate to eat what's on our plates.

You're also doing better about letting Daddy give you a bottle - I am very grateful for this. In fact last night you only wanted a sip when I tried giving you your bottle. Because of this I decided to let Daddy put you to bed. When Daddy tried, you drank the whole damn thing! Can you keep this up please? Daddy was beginning to think you didn't like him as much as me - we don't want him thinking that do we?

You are my last baby. How I wish this weren't so. Unfortunately, I don't think my body could handle another pregnancy - and I want to be around for you and your brother for a long time. I wish you weren't growing up so fast, but then again I can't wait until you get to the stage that your brother is at right now. You are both going to be amazing people and I can't wait to see who you are going to be.

Happy Birthday! I love you to bits and pieces!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Happy Birthday, Monkey!


At this very moment six years ago in Northern Vermont you entered the world. It was the most surreal experience of my life. Honestly, I didn't think I had it in me and I was petrified of the responsibility we were about to take on.
It turns out, we didn't need to be scared. I can't speak for your father, but I can safely say that you are the best thing that has happened to me - next to your brother, of course. You have made me accountable for my actions and have made me do things that I wouldn't normally have thought possible. I would do almost anything for you. I say almost because if I had to choose between killing a spider for you or running from the room shrieking, I'm afraid I'd have to choose the shrieking and running option. I've become stronger since you were born, but unfortunately this is still one area in which I have let my weakness overcome me.

In the short six years of your life you have become an amazing person. So confident, inquisitive, sensitive, and kind. You talk way more than we can handle at the moment, but I'm pretty sure that's going to turn out to be a good thing.

The way you are around your brother makes me extremely proud every single day. You don't show one ounce of jealousy towards him - I hope beyond hope that will continue. You love your brother so much, and it shows everyday. Where other siblings would get annoyed at the attention we show him, you just get in on it too. If we're playing a game with him, you want to join in immediately - not so we play the same game with you, but so you can make him laugh, or dance, or whatever it is we are doing at the moment.

The Chipmunk is learning to walk right now, and you are his number one supporter when we are not around. If he is getting into something he shouldn't, and we aren't there to take him away before he gets hurt, you do it - without being asked. I was so worried before the Chipmunk was born that you were going to resent not being an only child anymore since you had become so accustomed to having us all to yourself. I was wrong to be worried. You have adjusted to our new lives with such maturity, for which I am so thankful for.

You have made us so proud of you in school, too. You are reading way above the level that you should and keep amazing us everyday with the new words you know how to read. Like your parents, you have excelled at math as well. In Kindergarten this year, your teacher had you up in the front of the class helping her teach the lesson sometimes. This would normally embarrass other children, but not you. In fact, we didn't hear anything about it until parent-teacher conferences. It obviously didn't bother you one bit, otherwise you would have said something to us when it first happened.
You have come so far in the last six years.

You have come from this:

To this:

I can't wait to see who you become, I'm sure it's going to be great!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

5 years and 4 days apart

I have now entered what will forever be known as Birthday Week.
Tomorrow, May 27th, is the Monkey's birthday. 
At 8:53pm EST my first born will turn six years old.  The math hardly seems right.  Actually, it seems possible and impossible at the same time.  These six years feel like they have flown by, but they also feel like they were the longest six years of my life. 
Monday, June 1st, is the Chipmunk's birthday. 
At 10:25pm EST my second born will turn one year old.  He was due today, but held out for another few days to make sure he didn't steal too much of the Monkey's Birthday Thunder (or at least that's what I'll tell them when they get older).  Again, it hardly seems possible that only a year has passed.  So much has happened in the last twelve months that it seems impossible to comprehend. 
Because of the Monkey, I became a mother.  Because of the Chipmunk, I will always be a mother to two boys.  I find it hard to remember life without either one of them.  Each one has left their mark on me, and I will be forever changed for it.
Happy Birthday, Boys!  I love you both to bits and pieces.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I just got back from the gym where I was able to run for five separate minutes! I was aiming for four, but for some reason I felt like I could do five - so I did! It wasn't five minutes all together, but that will come. I walked for about 15 minutes first and then ran for a minute. Then I walked for two minutes and then ran for a minutes. I kept this pattern up for the five separate running portions. I can't believe I'm actually doing this.

This time the shin splints weren't nearly as bad as last time. Actually the only thing that really bothered me were my feet. I think I might need to get different shoes once I start running for longer. Next time I'll aim to run for six minutes.

Monday, May 11, 2009

This is gonna be harder than I thought

I only got about half-way through the first day of the Couch to 5k program.

I ran three times...and then I died.

The End.

Actually, I walked for the remaining 17 or so minutes but my legs were really feeling the burn, and the shin splints were killing me. I'll aim to run four times on Wednesday.

On the road to a healthier me

With both of my pregnancies I only gained 19 pounds.
After both children were born, I lost those 19 pounds before my six week follow-up.
Before both of those pregnancies I was nowhere near my ideal weight.
Both times, once I returned to work, I put the weight back on.  This time around, I've put on more weight than I did my whole pregnancy.
It's not that I'm eating more.  It's just that I'm not moving much.  I'm just so wiped out after getting up at 6am, getting the kids ready for their day, getting ready for mine, getting the kids to daycare, working all day, picking the kids up from daycare, making dinner, putting the kids to bed, cleaning, laundry, blah, blah, blah....I have little energy to do anything else. 
I have come to realize that my sedentary lifestyle has probably contributed to the increase in my blood pressure (well, I knew it before, but now I want to do something about it).  So about a month ago, I started going to the gym.  At first it was with a friend of Hubby's, but now she's my friend too - let's call her Cracker. 
Cracker has a gym membership at 24 Hour Fitness that let's her bring a guest every time she goes for free.  This was good for me since I wanted to get in better shape but didn't think I had the money to spend on a gym membership.  This was good for her because she wanted someone to workout with.

At first I was a little skeptical.  Cracker is in far better shape than I am and weighs a heck of a lot less.  But, as it turns out, we work well together.  In fact, we have even signed ourselves up for weekly torture, erm, sessions with a trainer.  We've had two sessions so far.
After reading through Miss Zoot's archives and seeing her achieve her goal of running a marathon, I've been inspired to set a goal for myself.  Since I'm so out of shape, and haven't run since races at summer camp, I decided to aim a wee bit lower. 

I want to be able to run a 5k by my next birthday - April 10th 2010.  If I'm able to do it sooner than that, great!  But I also don't want to set myself up for disappointment.  I am going to follow the Couch to 5k program starting today.  I have joined a gym on my own so I don't have to depend on Cracker whenever I want to work out. 
Also by my next birthday, I want to be 100 pounds lighter.  I'll settle for 75 pounds, but I think 100 is possible and I don't want to aim for a weight that I wouldn't be happy with since I fear I might stop once I reach whatever goal I set for myself.
We have 14 sessions left with the trainer.
Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

What's your definition of tragic?

A few weeks ago, on a late Saturday afternoon, I was trying to take a nap so that I would be able to stay awake through the movie Hubby and I were planning to see on our "date".
About two minutes after falling asleep, the phone rang.  Since we were getting a sitter to be able to go out on this date I thought it was her having to cancel.  I considered this as the only option considering the only other phone calls we get are from my husband's family, which meant that a phone call that late would mean something was wrong given the time difference to the UK. 
I looked over at the phone to see the caller ID show the names of my parents. 
After last summer, I assumed I would either never hear from them again or, at the most, hear when one or the other had died - either way, I didn't care.  So you can just imagine my surprise.  Hubby was shocked too.  In fact we were so shocked, neither one of us wanted to answer the phone.  So we let the machine get it.  No message was left.  I wasn't able to fall asleep again after that.
About an hour later the phone rang again - at the exact moment our sitter was ringing the doorbell to relieve us of our parental duties for the evening.  The caller ID showed the names of my parents again.  Since I didn't feel like being admonished for being a horrible daughter right before our night out, we decided to let the machine get it.  This time a message was left.  It was the Doormat.
He said that he had something to say to me.  That I shouldn't worry, it wasn't anything tragic.  He'd be up until 10pm his time if I chose to return the call.
We went for our night out and had a good time, but a lot of the talk centered around the message.  Like, what did he mean by "it's nothing tragic"?  Also, was I even going to call him back?  Personally, I didn't feel like putting myself in a position where I would feel compelled to forgive either of them for what happened, nor did I want to put myself in a position where I would start having a relationship with them again only to have the same shit happen again in a few years - I can't go through this again.  Additionally, I didn't feel like calling and getting the Witch on the phone by accident.  Finally, I didn't want to listen to reason after reason of why I'm a horrible person and substandard daughter.
I thought about what I was going to do for a little over a week, if I was even going to do anything.  Instead of calling, I sent an email.  In it I told him that if there was something that he needed to say to me, email was best.  This way I could either read it or not.  If I wanted, I could have Hubby read it first to see if the Doormat was going to rip me a new one.
A few days later I received a response from the Doormat.  It turns out that the something he wanted to say to me was this:
I've thought about it, and I thought you should know that [the Witch] had a stroke about a month ago.  She's completely paralyzed down her right side and can't speak at all....yada yada.
My first thought was that she had gotten what she had deserved - after all, karma's a bitch.  I realize that makes me sound like a horrible person.  But then I realized I didn't wish harm on her, at least not physical.  Not only that, but I don't think I wished harm on the Doormat, I was just disappointed in him.  Now he's saddled with dealing with this all on his own.  I don't want that, and I don't think he can do it.  Not only is his health not the greatest, but he is in no position to be lifting and moving an invalid around their three story house by himself and I don't think he's the type to hire help.  However, since I'm not speaking to him I don't think it's my place to say anything about my concerns.  So, I sent an email empathizing with his situation and telling him to let me know if there was anything I could do to help.
However, I still want to know, what do you think is his definition of tragic?  The dictionary defines tragic as "very sad; especially involving grief or death or destruction;".  Would you not classify what happened to the only person in your life you should love more than yourself as tragic?  It makes me wonder whether he was hoping for something to happen to release him from her, or if he just chose the wrong word. 
Knowing him though, he knew exactly what word he was using and it's intended meaning.
And now I wait.  I'll either hear back from him soon asking for assistance, or I won't hear anything until after the funeral. 
Knowing the Doormat, it will be the latter.

Friday, April 3, 2009

The art of laughter

It takes a lot to get the Chipmunk to smile.  It takes even more to get him to laugh.  So, when I found something that made him laugh last weekend I was thrilled!
All I was doing was pretending to nibble his cheek right where his jawbones and ear meet.  He thought it was hysterical.  The Monkey was watching Pinocchio at the time and got upset that he couldn't hear the movie so we had to stop our fun.  But the Chipmunk wanted it to keep going.  The way he told me?  He would nudge his forehead against my lips, kind of like a cat does when it kisses you. 
It was so sweet, I just want to remember it forever.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Who doesn't like Redi-Whip?

Remember how I've mentioned that the Chipmunk won't eat anything unless it's been pureed?  I wasn't joking.
He'll be 10 months old next week and he still hasn't had a cheerio.  We've put them in his mouth, but after about two seconds he starts gagging and proceeds to projectile vomit.  It's not pretty.  We've also tried him on those Gerber Puff things since they just dissolve the second they get into your mouth.  That produces the same effect as a Cheerio.

Last night we tried Redi-Whip.  Hubby put some on the tip of his finger and let the Chipmunk lick it off.  We thought he would love it.  I mean, who doesn't like cream or sugar?  Put them together and it should have been fool proof!  I mean, the stuff practically disintegrates the second it leaves the can.  He should have loved it - dammit!
You can guess what happened, can't you?
He gagged and projectile vomited the second he tried to move the stuff from the front of his mouth to the back.
When is he supposed to get over this?  The Monkey was eating Cheerios at seven months and could probably do it semi-unsupervised by ten.  I don't remember it being this hard.  Even now, if the Chipmunk's rice cereal isn't as watery as he would like he starts the whole gag routine.  I know kids develop at different rates, but this seems a little extreme.  At the rate we're going, he'll be in Kindergarten before he's able to eat like a toddler.  Any suggestions?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

What's in a name?

I'm still trying to get used to the fact that I have a baby.  Hell!  Just the fact that I have two kids tends to blow my mind some days.
What I'm also trying to get used to is the baby's name.
I call the baby the Chipmunk here, but his real name is isn't, but let's just say that's what it is.  It would have been extremely cruel for us to name him that with the last name it would be paired with. 
Anyway, when I was still pregnant with him we were absolutely, positively sure it was a girl.  So sure, in fact, we hadn't come up with any boy's names until two weeks before I was due.  We had a girl's name that we absolutely loved, but knew we should come up with a boy's name just in case we were wrong.

We decided on James since we liked the possible nicknames and it seemed to go with the Monkey's name.  We thought we would call him Jimmy most of the time, but it turns out we use Jim or James most often.  I don't think we've referred to him as Jimmy unless it was a joke.
The day the Chipmunk was born was one of the scariest days of my life.  Things were not going as planned at all and I ended up needing an emergency C-section after 24 hours of unmedicated labor (unmedicated for pain, about 14 hours of pitocin).  The doctor's were so concerned with saving him, and making sure nothing happened to me, that they forgot to check the gender when he was taken out.
Since I was so numb (as well as petrified) I had no idea that he had been taken out already until one of the doctor's said that the baby looked ok and they were getting ready to stitch me up.  All day the doctor had been referring to the baby as he and him.  She wasn't my regular doctor so she had no idea what the gender was, I just think it was her way of not confusing the baby with the mother (who is most definitely a she/her).  So, after she had said she was going to stitch me up, she followed that with "he's just going to get looked over and then brought to the nursery". 
This is what went through my head - Wait, did she just say he?  Was that because it's a he?  Or, is it because she's been referring to it as a he since I was admitted last night?
So, we did the logical thing and asked her to clarify.
Turns out she didn't look.  Thankfully, the anesthesiologist ( I sooo had to look that up) offered to go check for us.  When he returned he confirmed that the Chipmunk was indeed a boy.
After that, everything just moved so fast.  The Chipmunk was taken down to the NICU for additional monitoring since he wasn't breathing right.  I ordered Hubby to go with him.  After I was stitched up I was taken to a room for observation as well.  By the time I was out of Recovery, Hubby had told everyone in our families - as well as the hospital staff taking care of him - that his name was James.
Unfortunately, I don't feel like he is a James or a Jim.  And he's definitely not a Jimmy.
What makes it worse is that his middle name is my maiden name.  Given the crap that went on with my parents a few weeks after he was born, I'm sure you can see why that pains me.
To sum up, I'm not sure about his first name and I hate his middle name.  I know I could have the names changed, it just seems wrong now.  I just wish Hubby had waited to confirm with me that that's what I was sure I wanted his name to be. 

I should have given naming responsibilities to Clink.  She has already suggested a new nickname for my mother-in-law - BMIL (British Mother in Law).  I think this is genius!  She likely would have done much better than we did with the baby's name - dontcha think?

Monday, March 23, 2009

My mother-in-law is handy

My mother-in-law (I'll call her Nanny) is coming for a visit on April 1st.  She'll be staying with us for ten days - yippee!
I love it when she visits us.  If she and my father-in-law would just move here already we would be very happy people.
This morning I thought of a very wonderful benefit of having her home all day with nothing to do while we are at work - cook dinner.
I cook dinner maybe three of the five weeknights.  The other nights we're either just too busy or,  forgot to take something out or, are way to exhausted to put any effort into it.  Sometimes we have take-out, sometimes we have cereal.
So, to say I'm excited to have a home cooked meal waiting for me when I get home is an understatement.
I also thought of another benefit of having Nanny here - she'll be able to wash the Chipmunk's sleepsack!
The Chipmunk likes to use the top of this sleepsack as his comfort item.  The second we put it on him he sticks the top part where the zipper is straight into his mouth.  He probably sucks on it all night.  Why he won't suck his thumb, is beyond me.
After a few nights of this treatment, the sleepsack is all kinds of nasty - washing only helps, but it does not get completely clean.  Unfortunately they are expensive, so we only have one.  The one we have is made out of fleece, which means putting it in the dryer is a no-no if you want to keep the fleecy quality of it.  Since we're not home when he is not, it's extremely difficult to wash the thing.  He's so attached to it, he struggles to sleep without it while we wait for it to air-dry. 
With Nanny home during the day while we are at work and the Chipmunk is at daycare, the sleepsack could get washed everyday!  This brings real joy to me - the thing might actually get clean!
Do you think Nanny will mind these chores?

Friday, March 13, 2009

Here comes the sun

Not literally. I don't think, anyway.

All last week I was sick as a dog. It started with a little mini-cough which very quickly turned into something horrendous. After about 36 hours I was achy, had the chills, and was coughing up a lung. Turns out, I had the flu. At on point my fever was so high Tylenol and Advil did nothing to help. I thought I was going to have to go to the Emergency room. Thankfully, I came to my senses and took a shower. This brought my fever down to something more manageable. I didn't move from my bed for two days. Hubby did everything for the kids (except, of course, feed the Chipmunk). I got sick on Sunday.

Unfortunately, Hubby left to go back to the UK on Wednesday. It wasn't for a long trip, but it was long enough - he got home very late this past Sunday night. The days that I was still very sick but he wasn't here were not fun. The misery was going to be added to this past Friday when the boys had their check-up (Monkey for his annual, Chipmunk for his nine-month). I could have sworn one or both of them were due for shots. The last time the Monkey got shots he couldn't walk for days due to some adverse reaction. Every time the Chipmunk gets shots he's miserable and doesn't eat for days. This is why we try to schedule their appointments for Fridays. It's better for them to have the weekend to recover instead of us needing to miss work. Unfortunately, since Hubby was gone, I was going to have to deal with the recovery on my own while I was still feeling miserable myself. Thankfully, I was wrong about either of them needing shots and we were all able to survive the weekend - for the most part.

It seems I always fear the worst, but never hope for the best.

A while ago I wrote about the panic attack I had while I was still pregnant. My worries then were mainly about money - mainly not having enough after the baby was born to meet our current commitments, let alone any added expenses that resulted from a having a new baby around. As a re-cap:

  • I was going to be taking 12 weeks off of work, 3 of which were going to be unpaid. A loss of about $2000.
  • Taking that much time unpaid was going to result in me needing to pay for the company's portion of health insurance, about an additional $800 for the time I would need to pay.
  • I was probably going to fail miserably at breastfeeding, which meant we would need to spend money on formula, at least an additional $200 a month.
  • The mortgage on our rental unit was set to go up by $400 last July.
  • We would need to find a new daycare, since the old one was not going to be able to take the baby.
  • Let's not forget the already known about costs of diapers and daycare for the baby.
As it turned out, I didn't need to worry as much as I did.

  • I only took 9 days off unpaid. My maternity leave wasn't as long as I had hoped for, but it's what was best for our family financially. I think the total loss was about $1500, but I was able to stagger the unpaid time off so it didn't hurt as bad.
  • I didn't have to pay anything for the company's portion of my health insurance, this was incorrect information that was given to me.
  • I did fail miserably at breastfeeding, but we decided to go with generic formula this time around - saving us about $30 a can. A bonus of using the generic stuff is the fact that daycare will provide the baby any formula he uses while he is in her care. Now formula only costs about $40 a month.
  • I was entirely wrong about the mortgage. I think I must have been hallucinating when we originally closed on the note.
  • We found a new daycare. It took a while to find someone who would be able to accept both children and was able to take the Monkey to and from school. Considering the baby was a few months away from being born, and then wouldn't need care for another 12 weeks, we were really lucky we found someone when we did. We were also lucky she didn't want us to pay for the Chipmunk when we started using her just to keep his slot open for the 5 months she wouldn't be taking care of him - most daycares I was calling was making this a requirement.
  • A few weeks before I was scheduled to return to work, I got promoted. The change in my pay covered the new daycare cost - yay!
Unfortunately, we did end up having a few extra costs that were not anticipated in my original freak-out.
  • The Chipmunk stayed in the NICU for 6 days - $600
  • The Chipmunk needed supplemental oxygen for 11 weeks - I thik we ended up paying about $50 for this.
  • Because of the need for supplemental oxygen, he had more doctors' appointments than anticipated - this resulted in about $60 of additional co-pays.
  • The Chipmunk developed torticolis. This is still being treated by the chiropractor, but he is much better. An additional cost so far of about $250.
This is way better than I had initially anticipated. I wish I could have the mentality that it will all work out, saving me a ton of stress, but unfortunately that does not appear to be who I am.

Remember the blood tests I had a few weeks ago? I just go the results. Ever since the blood was drawn I was anticipating horrible news. I was certain something terrible was going to be revealed as the reason for my sudden increase in blood pressure. Something was found, though I'm not sure yet if it explains the blood pressure issue.

I'm Vitamin D deficient.

What that means yet, I have no idea. At first I thought, hey that's great! Nothing is really wrong. At least nothing a little more time out in the sun won't fix. Unfortunately, after doing a little research, it's not looking that simple.

I know Vitamin D is used to aid in the absorption of Calcium, so I'm at risk of brittle bones. Whether there are other problems associated with this deficiency has not been explained to me yet. I have an appointment in a little over a month to find out. Hopefully I can learn from the past year and try and have the mentality that everything is going to work out just fine. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Well, that was easy

A few weeks ago I wrote about the Monkey's very poor eating habits.  I don't know if I made it clear in that post, but most mealtimes were fraught with pleading and anger - from both sides.  He was pleading to be done or to have dessert, we were pleading for him to JUST TAKE ONE FRICKING BITE IT'S NOT GOING TO KILL YOU; he was angry because he had been fed something he didn't even want to try and because he wanted dessert, we were angry because he wouldn't JUST TAKE ONE FRICKING BITE IT'S NOT GOING TO KILL YOU!
Many times Hubby and I have discussed what we should do with the Monkey's extremely strong will to not eat anything that looked remotely healthy.  Many times we have come to the conclusion that we should just not show him that we care.  Many times we have resorted to the "take a bite, come on, please for me" routine.  Then it would turn into, now you have to take three bites before you can leave the table or get dessert.  Then it would turn into the Monkey asking how many bites he had to take to be done and get dessert before he even started the meal.  This pattern would replay itself many, many times.  Dinner was very, very painful to endure - to say the least.
This time I didn't discuss the game plan with Hubby.  
The Monkey would whine and moan about what was being served, my reply was "ok, you can be done if you want".  Then he would ask for dessert.  My response was "nope, if you want dessert you have to eat what is on your plate".  He would then proceed to whine some more.  Hubby would get upset that we were letting the Monkey win and that he had to eat dinner or else he'd be up too early because he was hungry.  My response to Hubby was that I was done fighting with the Monkey over what he ate.  He could either eat what we made for him or go hungry. 
Over the last two weeks something very bizarre happened.  Sometimes the Monkey would complain about what he was being fed, and then he'd get to the point where he would ask if he could be done with dinner.  When I would respond that he could be done, he would then ask for dessert.  After realizing that he wasn't going to get dessert, and that he actually was hungry, he would turn around and come back to the table and finish everything on his plate - regardless of what it was.  For the most part we were feeding him things that he would normally eat, albeit with a fight.
Last night we had something we never dreamed we could get him to eat, regardless of what the reward was.  We fed him stew with a side of rice.  He moaned the second we put it on the table, saying he didn't like it without even taking a bite.  He loves rice, so he ate that and said he was done.  Could he have dessert?  Nope, not until all the meat and potatoes were gone.  He said that he didn't want dessert and left the table.  The Monkey saw that the Chipmunk was gobbling up his yummy (to the Chipmunk, yucky to me (trust me, I see the irony)) pureed squash and would soon be having dessert (pureed bananas).  So, the Monkey turned around and came back to the table and ATE EVERY LAST PIECE OF MEAT AND POTATOES.  He even ate a slice of carrot.  With only the teeniest bit of complaining.
To say I'm thrilled is an understatement.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Some things

I'm writing this from my brand new HP Mini! We got it a few weeks ago and we're still getting used to the fact that we have a laptop again. And, not just any laptop, one that is just so wee! The smaller keyboard is taking some getting used to, but other than that it is just fabulous.


I just returned from a doctor's appointment. I didn't think anything was wrong with me. It was an appointment that was forced on me by the doctors office so I could continue getting my prescription for my blood pressure refilled. The nurse also said that they wanted to run some labs since it had been a while since they were done.

So, I went to the appointment at about 9:30 without having breakfast (because of the labs they wanted to do). I nearly hit the floor when the nurse showed me the blood pressure reading - 172/110! I had no idea it was even high, let alone that high. I've been taking my medication regularly, but now that I think about it my head has been hurting for the last two weeks or so. Hmmmm. I guess more drugs for me then. I hope nothing too terrible shows up on the bloodwork.

Friday, February 6, 2009

The right place at the right time

Casey is a goddess.  She has managed to do something that I have not been able to do for over a year now.
She got my Hubby to buy a new computer.
A few days ago I was reading this entry while Hubby was in the shower.  In that entry, she has you click over to her new review blog.  The review at the top of the page that day was about her awesome new HP mini.  So, by the time Hubby was out of the shower I had customized one for myself, on a whim.  I knew Hubby would never go for the girly red one for two reasons: it was red and had flowers on it and, it was way more expensive than the one with no flowers on it.  As soon as he saw it he told me to buy it.
So, for $425 we will be the proud new owners of the smallest laptop I have ever heard of.
At first we were a little unsure.  There were a couple of issues that popped up during the discussion of whether or not we should get it. 
First, it was an HP.  We had had a ton of problems with our last laptop, also made by HP (but sold to us under the Compaq name).  It's so old, I can't seem to find a link for it.  But, the reason we bought that particular laptop almost 4 years ago was because I thought that I was going to need one with a full sized keyboard because I needed the number 10-key for my job.  Turns out, I changed jobs about a month after getting the biggest/heaviest laptop known to man and had no use for it anymore.  Since then, the laptop has been dying a slow and painful death.  First, the motherboard had to be replaced twice in the first month that we owned it.  Second, the battery quit working completely about two years ago.  So much so, the computer wouldn't work at all when the battery was in the computer.  It's been without a battery since 2007.  Finally, it just stopped turning on about three months ago.  However, somehow, we got over the HP name pretty quickly, just not sure how.
Second, it didn't come with a cd drive.  This took a little longer to get over.  The mini had an external drive you could purchase for $99, but that seemed to bring the cost of the laptop into the Dell range where the cd drive is internal.  So, since we didn't want to spend another $100, how were we supposed to get any software on this computer?  It turns out that we can take the cd drive (also a dvd burner) out of the crappy 4-year old laptop that died last year, pay $20 for some sort of case, and connect it to the mini via a USB cable.  Problem Solved!
So, HP will build our new laptop in the next week or so and all will be right in the world.  Yay!
Thank you, Casey.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Sleep is not for the weak

Not only do I have a kid who doesn't make it absolutely clear that his ears are killing him (poor Chipmunk), but it appears I have a kid who will sleep through the night as long as his bum is not swimming in crap - painfully sore ears be damned!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Adventure's in motherhood. Or, you know, why I'm a horrible mother.

The Chipmunk woke up at 2am. 
I waited a little to see if he would go back to sleep, which he did after a little bit of on-again/off-again fussing - nothing major.  But then he woke up again.  I figured that since he had only had 15 ounces of formula yesterday (his normal is about 24) I should go in and try and feed him so we could both go back to sleep. 
I prepared the bottle and went into his room to change his diaper.
As I walked into his bedroom I smelled something foul.  Just to make sure it was coming from him (where else would it be coming from?  Hey, it was 2am, give me a break) I picked him up and took a whiff of his bum (shut up, you've done it too).  I nearly passed out from the smell. 

Realizing that I was going to need the wipes (ya think?) that were in our bedroom, I put him down and blood-curdling screaming ensued. 
Hmmm, that's weird.  Normally he just does a little more fussing until I return.  Oh well, he's probably just as upset as I am that he wasn't sleeping through the night (I've come to expect it now - I know, what was I thinking?), or at least that's what I think as I left the room (it's 2am people!).
After: procurement of said wipes, unzipping his sleep sack, and opening his pj's - I realize that I didn't hear the alert (danger! danger! blowout! blowout!) and that I would need to light on for this diaper change.  There was crap everywhere!
I begin cleaning him up, holding back my own vomit.  With every wipe comes an even louder blood-curdling scream.  The poor thing, who went to bed with a very dry, very white bum had the reddest, weltiest bum I had ever seen. 
Finally, Hubby hears what is going on and comes in to see what I'm doing to the Chipmunk to cause such screaming (why assume I'm doing something to him?  I don't think I've been known to abuse our children - especially in the middle of the night - no, I save the abuse for the daylight hours (kidding)). 
I thank god he's awake so he can get the diaper rash cream for me before I put a new diaper back on.  Also very thankful because now Hubby can change the sheet on the crib mattress I can't reach with one hand (you know, since screaming bloody murder baby won't let me put him down).
After the Chipmunk settles down he decides that yes, a bottle of milk would be great right about now.  Hubby goes back to sleep, and chug chug chug, so does the Chipmunk. 
Repeat at 5:30, except for the bottle and the going back to sleep.
At the 2am debacle it was already decided that the Chipmunk would not be attending daycare today.  Not fair on him, and definitely not fair on daycare lady (or, you know, the other parents who expect their kids to not come home with the bum plague).  And, because I used all of my paid time off last summer for my maternity leave, Hubby will be staying home with him.
However, before I leave for work, I make a trip to Walgreens for some Pedialyte. 
The bottle says to ask a doctor if giving to a kid under one. 
The Chipmunk is under one.
It's 6:30 in the morning at this point, the doctor's office is not open.  So, I opt for the next best thing - the pharmacist.  He says to give the baby a 50% Pedialyte and 50% water mixture for now, but call the doctor when the office opens.
Giving the mixture to the Chipmunk is easier said than done.
The Chipmunk is no fool.  Evidently, he knows the evil taste of Pedialyte before I am even able to get the bottle close to his mouth - forget about in it.
I let the Hubby know that I was not having any luck but I had to go to work and that I'd call the doctor's office at 8am.  Good luck!
I got a hold of the nurse practitioner as soon as possible.  She asks questions like:
    "How often is the diarrhea?"  Um, about every three hours.
    "Is he running a fever?"  I think so, he's awfully warm.  Tylenol did not help, but Motrin did.
    "Try not to give him Motrin."  Doh!
More conversation about what I can give him to eat and drink.  Blah, blah, blah.  If he's still not better within 48 hours bring him in, within 24 hours and still running a fever bring him in.
Then she asks:
    "Are his poo's bright green and unbelievably smelly?"  Um, yes.  And they were the consistency of cottage cheese yesterday.
    "Oh.  Bring him in today.  It sounds like it's the Rotavirus."  Um, ok.
Appointment is scheduled and Hubby is called with the time.
After the appointment, Hubby calls to tell me that it's not the dreaded Rotavirus, but that the Chipmunk has a double ear infection. 
Wha???  How is that possible?  I thought he had a stomach virus?  Nope. No clue what is up with the diarrhea and the welty bum.  So, she gave Hubby some stuff for the Chipmunk's welty bum, some soy formula to make his poo's more solid, and a prescription for an antibiotic
I mean, I know he's been tugging at his left ear on and off for about 10 days now, but that's all.  He's more or less been as happy as his normal eight month old self.
Oh right.  That.  Hmmm, I guess I should have paid more attention to that.  The poor thing has been suffering for almost two weeks and I completely ignored his way of telling me!
And that, my friends, is why I am a horrible mother. 
Email me and I can give you the address of where you can send my awards to.

Monday, February 2, 2009

No Headgear Needed


We took the Chipmunk to the Neurosurgeon today. Thankfully, his torticollis induced misshaped head is nothing dire. It does not need to be fixed with either surgery (if I were religious I might be putting in an AMEN here, but I'm not, so I won't) or a helmet. The doc says that the Chipmunk will grow out of it by the time he's two.

Like I said - Phew!

Friday, January 30, 2009


Apparently my boys like to do things backwards.
Yeah, yeah - I know every kid develops at his or her own pace.  But, I was talking with the pediatrician a few weeks ago and he asked if the Chipmunk was able to sit up for more than a few seconds yet.  I said that he wasn't but he was crawling everywhere just fine so I wasn't worried at all.  The pediatrician was astonished and said that he had never heard of it happening in that order before.  My response was something along the lines of too bad the Monkey was not his patient when he was a baby, because he did the same exact thing.  Except he went from crawling, to cruising, then to sitting up.  Again, the pediatrician was astounded.
Now, I have nothing to worry about the Chipmunk meeting his developmental milestones - he's sitting up, all on his own...and crawling. 
Now we just have to bring him to the Pediatric Neurosurgeon on Monday to make sure his misshapen head isn't something to worry about.  Wish us luck!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The diet of a Kindergartner

The Monkey doesn't eat.

Okay, that's a bit drastic. What I meant to say is, he survives on very little. More like water and air.

Okay, exaggerating again.

He will only eat a few things. God help you if you try and get him to eat something he doesn't like or has never even tried before. When he does eat, it takes forever.

Hubby blames me for his pickiness, but I only cook what I like so it's not like he can see me refusing to eat something. So, where is he learning it from?

I know this is supposed to be some sort of weird, cosmic, karma. But really, I know how picky I am, I don't need to be reminded of how annoying it is to others by giving me the pickiest child on the planet. Anyway, if I'm so incredibly picky why won't he eat what I've got on my plate?

I say it's genetic.

Hubby will eat anything you put in front of him - as long as it's not liver, or has nuts in it (for some reason he counts coconuts - why?).

I've always been a picky eater. The evil people who raised me always used to make fun of how picky I was (fun times) - they, like Hubby, will eat anything. So, where did I learn it from? Again, I'm resorting to genetics.

I didn't come up with this conclusion until a year and a half ago when I was in Kansas visiting with my biological mother. The first night we were there we went out to eat at a Mexican restaurant. My biological mother ordered first. What Hubby and I heard was enough to have us both laughing as silently as possible behind our menu's. It was like listening to something I would order..."I would like this, but could I have it with this instead of that, with some extra of that other thing on the side?". Just picture Meg Ryan's character in When Harry Met Sally, and that's what it was like (erm, what I'm like). It was very comical.

Great! Now I know why the Monkey and I are they way we are when it comes to food. Unfortunately, it doesn't help with the nightly battles we have over what he is going to eat.

Here is the complete list of what he will willingly eat without a fight:

Cheese tortellini in alfredo sauce
Mac 'n Cheese (Kraft or Annie's, definitely not homemade)
Spaghetti with meat sauce (just my homemade meat sauce, forget about taking him out to eat anywhere else and ordering that)
Plain spaghetti with butter & parmesan cheese
Peanut butter and honey sandwiches (cut into quarters) - He's better than me here, he doesn't care what kind of bread his sandwiches are made on as long as it doesn't have twigs (his word - I think it's intended to describe multigrain type breads)
Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (cut into quarters)
Cheese sandwiches (that's it, just cheese. No mayo, butter, or god forbid we offer to grill it. Just plain please).
Fish sticks
Pizza (maybe - depends on the kind)
Cheese Bread (pizza dough with cheese)
Oatmeal (instant maple flavored - that's it)
Most sugary children's cereal
Ice Cream (any and all kinds)
McDonald's Cheeseburgers (without anything else on it)
Apples (peeled & cut-up)
Most puddings
Chicken nuggets/chicken fingers
Scrambled eggs
Pancakes, preferably chocolate chip

That's it. No veggies, no fruit. He adores milk, and would have buckets of that for dinner if we let him.

We might be able to convince him (with some bribing) to eat:

Taco's - don't be fooled with this one. He won't eat taco's put together like taco's. Everything has to be separate. So he has to eat a bite of meat (seasoned ground beef), a bite of cheese, a (miniscule) bite of lettuce, a bite of taco (flour or corn, he doesn't mind)
Green beans - this really depends on what's for dessert.

He will not, under any circumstances, eat anything made out of potato's. He also will not eat, no matter what you bribe him with, hot dogs. What kid doesn't eat fries or hot dogs? Mine.

Some nights, when we don't feel like fighting, he'll go to bed without dinner. Not because we want to punish him, but because it's his choice on whether or not he wants to eat what is in front of him. Other nights, when we don't feel like fighting, I'll make something that I know he loves just to avoid the conflict. Hubby and I refuse to make a separate meal for him, and maybe that's what we're doing wrong.

I don't want to jinx it, but so far the Chipmunk is doing much better (and faster) than his brother. He'll eat any food we put in his mouth as long as it's pureed to an itty, bitty pulp. I'm hoping it continues this way - the eating whatever we put in front of him, not the pureeing to the itty bitty pulpiness. I guess he takes after Hubby. Now, if the Chipmunk doesn't want a bottle at the exact moment you are offering it to him, that's a different story.

So, what am I supposed to do about the Monkey. I want to be able to put something in front of him and be done. If he eats it, great! If not, it doesn't matter. But it does matter. If he doesn't eat he starts misbehaving. I don't want to have to bribe him to eat. It's so frustrating. Hubby isn't helping either. He'll start yelling at the Monkey if he doesn't do what he wants him to do. I don't like that approach either.

Any suggestions?