Thursday, July 31, 2008

Talk To Me

Stacy and Clinton are right. Quality fabric + quality workmanship = higher price, but also = better fit. That being said, I FOUND A SWIMMING SUIT. Praise the Living God. I'm so happy. Sure it's not fabulous (It's hot pink. Not my first choice.), but I do feel comfortable and confident in it. Thus, tomorrow's trip to the swimming pool has already gotten off to a good start. And, can I just say, that I LOVE this whole "swim mini" concept. What in the world took so long to come up with this? This is not your average swimming-suit-with-a-skirt of the days of old. No no no, my friends. This one is actually cute. It's actually flattering. Land's End is my new best friend. And Sears is my newer best friend for selling Lands End stuff without my having to order it online.

Sears, however, is not my new best friend for their photo studio. I'm still mourning the loss of our local Picture People. Oh, Picture People, how I miss thee. How I miss your perky teen-age employees with their funny sounds and their overbearing enthusiasm for bringing staged smiles to the faces of my children. Oh how I miss being able to use your "free 8x10" coupon that you're still sending me (which, seriously? MUST you pour salt in my already open wound?). Oh how I miss the agony of trying to figure out just which photo to actually BUY, rather than the searching and searching to find a photo of high enough quality to merit actually bringing home.


And yet, I signed up for the year-long Sears Photo membership anyway. Beggars can't be choosers.

All of that being said, NONE of the above was in my plan when I sat down at the computer tonight. Tonight's topic is even better than a swimming suit that fits. Even better than the kids at Picture People. EVEN BETTER than the brownies that I made tonight that totally flopped, BUT in their flop-ness actually turned into one of those "molten chocolate" cakes that you have to order at the beginning of your meal at a fancy restaurant because it takes so long to cook and is so delicious because of the gooey chocolate that pours out once you put your fork into it. (Honestly - if a recipe is going to flop, then this is the way to do it. Wouldn't you agree?)

Tonight is all about my son TALKING. Using words. REAL WORDS.

Now, I freely admit that this is something that we've been anxious about. As we find ourselves racing towards "two" at breakneck speed, we also find ourselves counting down the days until The Deadline. The time when Christopher should have a good number of words that he uses with frequency. Words that he uses with meaning. And (gasp!) word combinations that express intent.

Don't get too excited. We're not reciting Shakespeare here. But today we did have a breakthrough. Over the past week, I have been teaching Christopher to sing "Do Re Mi" and boy is it cute. I'll say, "do do do." And he'll say "do do do." Then we'll do the same with Re and Mi. But today. TODAY! After our normal "repeat after me" session in the car, I heard a little voice from the back seat say, "do re mi...."


And then, tonight, as he was jumping off the couch and bouncing on his pillows on the floor, all of a sudden I hear, "OW." Ow. Ow. Owwww.

Perhaps you find this to be anticlimactic, but Tim and I were thrilled. Thrilled, because WE NEVER TAUGHT HIM "OW." Which means he's picked it up from someone else - we're guessing his big cousin who came over to play on Tuesday. HE PICKED IT UP. He picked it up without my saying, "Christopher, say ow. Ow. Say Ow. Christopher say it. (hopeful waiting) Okay, Mommy say it: ow. Now Christopher say it. Ow. Owwwww. Christopher say it."

Yes, this is the way we've been living our lives. It's a wonder he hasn't packed his bag and moved out by now, what with all the pressure.

Thus, we've experienced a joyful day around here. Not because of the impressiveness of the word, but because it feels like we're moving forward. He is getting it. The synapses are firing. So it really will be only a matter of time before the "MOM!!!!!" that I hear from the backseat when we pass a bus or a fire truck on the road, followed by enthusiastic pointing and waving of arms actually becomes "WOW MOM LOOK AT THAT TRUCK!"

And that will be SO. AWESOME.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Brotherly Love

Because he cares about personal and oral hygiene....and because he feels it necessary to pass these traits on to his little brother.....

I turned around this morning to find Christopher sitting next to Jacob. BRUSHING HIS TEETH.

You can imagine Jacob's delight.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Am I the only one here who thinks that my gift-giver's name was NOT a coincidence?

Seeing as how I'm always about three steps behind where I'd like to be these days, I figure it's no problem to put everything off just a little longer to sit here and write about this and that. So many things to say, so little energy to sit down and do it. So of all the mishmash from this week that would pop into my mind with a "I should write about that!" and popped out before I gathered up the energy to sit down and do it, here's the highlight.

Ha. Energy to sit down. This is my life.

On Monday, I received a card from my dear Nonna which read, "Happy Anniversary! I can't believe how quickly these two years have passed." And it's true - especially considering it's been three years. Three years a Troy. Three years of joy, despite the many struggles we've been dealt. Three years of opportunities for growth in holiness....hopefully some of which have actually taken. It was hard to remember it was our anniversary, actually, as this was probably the busiest week we've had in quite a while, but when Wednesday came around, BAM there it was. And it was awesome.

The day started out with my reading of this post on faith and family. I wish there was a camera set up in my computer room so you could see my reaction - sitting at the desk, crying, because I was so excited. SO AWESOME!!! MADE. MY. DAY.

After that, Jake and I headed out to Target where I purchased THREE, yup THREE, maternity swimming suits. Argh. Maternity. Lest you be mistaken, I am NOT pregnant. But I figured that these would fit my newly postpartum body better than any others and leave me far less depressed. It needs to be said that the last time I wore a swimming suit was FOUR YEARS AGO. I was in Hawaii. It was a bikini. Four years, two pregnancies, and zero sun later, I stood in my bathroom trying on these swimming suits and DYING because they were so very awful. There really are no words for how horrible they were. Remarkably, I was having such a good day that it hardly bothered me at all. And, it certainly helped to have such a loving husband whose response to my declarations of how hideous I looked was, "let me be the judge of that." Sometimes he just really knows exactly how to make me feel good. That being said, he has still not seen me in those suits. Nor will he ever.

They are all going back to Target.

Tim and I went out to dinner that night and it was fabulous. The boys stayed at Oma & Pop's house with some help from their Auntie Erin. This was the first time I've left Jacob for that long (I never left Christopher for that long until he was well into solids) and off we went, just the two of us. And it was AWESOME.

We did a lot of reminiscing - the first time we met...our wedding know, all of that fluffy stuff. Of course, we cried. (We do that here.) But we also remembered upon anniversaries past: anniversary #1 where it was 108 degrees outside (for real) and I was 500 pounds pregnant (almost for real). Anniversary #2 when Tim was so incredibly ill that his gift to me was suffering through a couple of days to save his very last percocet so that he'd be able to take me out to dinner. Anniversary #3 where we're in the midst of starting our own business and the financial numbers in our lives are all written in red.

We did a lot of dreaming about the future - looking forward to when our boys will be old enough to join us for these anniversary dinners and we can celebrate as a family. Wondering when we'll have a year (or even just a summer) that's not wracked with stress, or illness, or worry of some sort or another. Recognizing that, really, that's just life. When one thing ends, another begins. And realizing that regardless of what is to come, we can handle it because we've got each other. We've got our boys. And, most importantly, we've got our Faith.

Speaking of our Faith, we went to Adoration today. (Please excuse me if I wrote about this last week, but I'm just so touched by this....) My little Christopher brought tears to my eyes as he bowed before the monstrance, kissed the cross, blew kisses to our blessed Mother. Of all of the things he will do in his life to make me proud, none of them will beat this. Nothing is more important to me than forming my boys in their faith. This is going to be a challenge, considering everything else that will be vying for their time and attention, but I think we're up to it.

This weekend we will watch our wedding video, as we do every year, and will sit on the couch and CRY!!!!! just like always. The difference this year will be that Christopher will watch with us, and Jacob too. And as we watch we'll be thanking and praising God for that day three years ago. Not just for what it was, but for the fruits that have grown from it.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Go to sleeeep, little Jacob....go to sleep liiitle Jacob.....

At the beginning of this week, I was beginning to wonder if I'd ever sleep again. My little Jacob, my precious little peanut whose mommy was bragging to the whole world about what a good sleeper he was (at least during the day...which, really, I'll take what I can get) suddenly abandoned his afternoon naps. This is not OK. Naptime in our house is PRECIOUS TIME WHICH I DO NOT GIVE UP EASILY. I am not one of those "go with the flow" moms who is happy to see her child sleeping when he needs it but can deal with the days when he doesn't. No no no. Naptime in the Troy household is at 1pm. Sharp. No negotiations.

I CRAVE this routine. I THRIVE on this routine. (And, luckily, so does Christopher.)

Oh, the wonderfulness that was having two babies sleep at the same time! But then, to my dismay, Jacob decided that, no, he would not sleep. Not until about 4:00. You know, when Christopher wakes up. He would eat and sit in his chair and look around and coo. You know, all that cute little baby stuff. But he would not sleep. AND! We even were starting to get into that dangerous territory of him falling asleep in my arms but then waking up immediately upon the transfer to the chair. I've done that whole thing before. We're not going there again.

With Christopher, there was no such thing as a daytime nap until he was 5 months old. That was rough. However, he did sleep quite well at night - a trade off that I was very happy with. That being said, one would think that it would be reasonable to expect similar behaviour from Jacob. ONE WOULD BE WRONG.

Two nights ago, he slept his normal three-hour first stretch, getting up the first time at midnight. And then he got up EVERY HOUR ON THE HOUR from that point forward. THE NEXT DAY HE DID NOT NAP. There was much groaning and gnashing of teeth, you can be sure. I was beginning to think that my life was seriously over. That I would just stay awake until I faded into oblivion. Seriously. If Descartes was right, then my lack of ability to maintain ANY thought in my mind would cause me to simply fade away. (Which, at least then maybe I'd get some rest.)

With a few nights like that behind me, you can imagine my SHEER DELIGHT when Jacob fell asleep during his lunch yesterday and STAYED! ASLEEP! for the chair transfer. You can also imagine my UTTER HORROR when his dad (my darling husband whom I adore) MOVED HIS CHAIR ACROSS THE ROOM AND WOKE. HIM. UP. Thus, no nap for baby. And, selfishly...but nap for mommy. I informed said husband that he would be responsible for some serious pampering of the wife later that night to make up for his indiscretion.

Naturally, my darling came down with a splitting headache later that afternoon (it really was bad and I really did feel for him - even to the point of forgetting about the pampering that I wasn't getting). This headache lead to less attention being paid to Christopher's post-bath pee in the tub, which lead to the following course of events:

(Deep breath in....)
  1. Christopher pees on my bed, through the sheets to the mattress pad.
  2. Husband feels sick, due to headache, goes downstairs to make sure he doesn't die.
  3. I clothe Christopher, read him stories, put him in bed, race through changing of sheets because of screaming baby downstairs who is not assisting the daddy with the headache.
  4. Finally got the bed made while thinking, "there is no mattress pad on my bed. Something bad is going to happen tonight."
  5. Get husband to bed.
  6. Get baby to bed.
  8. Wake up at 2:00am to change baby's diaper.
  9. Place blanket under baby's bottom to avoid poop on the bed (I learned that lesson last week.) Get nailed my missile poop that OVERSHOOTS the blanket straight to the sheet (and my jammies).
  10. Whisper choice selection of swear words.
  11. Scramble to get new jammies for baby, new jammies for mommy, towels to go between mattress and poop sheet. Blanket to go between poop sheet and my clean jammies.
  12. Swear some more.
  13. Get baby back to bed, where he sleeps for THREE MORE HOURS.
  14. Get up.
  15. Feed baby and replace in crib where he sleeps for TWO MORE HOURS.
  16. Awake, happily, to realize (unhappily) that I have to wash both poo-poo sheets and pee-pee sheets all in one day.
All of that being said, I can't complain too much. Jacob took a morning, afternoon, and dinner time nap today. AND he's asleep right now. Knock on wood.

On the Christopher front:
Today he used his own "imaginary color finding goggles" to help the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse gang replace all of the colors of the rainbow, ran around Babies-R-Us like the biggest boy you've ever seen, and made his mommy cry because of his beautiful reverence for Jesus and Momma Mary in adoration. OH - AND when I said to him, "Say Pizza!" His response was "Peee!" Close enough for me.

Next time: My Love Affair with Ebay. Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Good Read

Check out this website -

It's a collection of women bloggers writing about all things woman, mom, and Catholic. I've only been reading it for one day and have already found it to be informative, entertaining and very very inspirational.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Angel, Unaware.

I think it's time that someone got some action figures.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Decisions, Decisions.

Well. We finally settled on Godparents for Jacob. And, believe it or not, it was a lot easier this time than last. When I was pregnant with Christopher, we must have mulled it over for months. As Catholics, it is something that we take quite seriously. So Tim and I set up some criteria.

Criterion #1 - Catholicity. They must be practicing Catholics. And that means PRACTICING. In the Dictionary Of Me, "practicing" can be defined as REALLY GOES TO CHURCH. EVERY WEEKEND. AND HOLY DAYS. And, perhaps....maybe they even go on a weekday from time to time. It also means that they know their faith and have a love for it. Perhaps a devotion is exercised here or there. Maybe they even own a Rosary. And use it. In most cases this would narrow the candidate pool....but in our circle of family and friends, it really only shaves a few people off the top.

Criterion #2 - Proximity. As the role of Godparents is to provide a lived witness of the Faith to the child, we both feel that it's really important that these people are a frequent presence in our lives. I want my children to see them more than once a year. For both boys we considered family and friends who lived out of town, out of state, even out of the country. But we keep coming back to this consistency issue.

Criterion #3 - Family. There are certain things that, I feel, you have to use family for first. Whether it "should" be that way or not. Whether it's annoying or not. Whether you really want to or not. It's kind of like the whole issue of who you have in your wedding. There's a progression, and lest you have complete disregard for the possibility of alienating people who are bound to you FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, you should really start there.

I tell you, we AGONIZED over this issue with Christopher. Is this person going to pass on the Faith to him the way WE will? Is that person around enough to really have an impact in his daily life? Is anyone going to get their feelings hurt if we ask so-and-so instead? Good grief.

But, the agony was worth it because I'm confident that we chose the PERFECT people for him.

And then I got pregnant again. I chose not to think about Baptism AT ALL FOR THE DURATION OF THE PREGNANCY because it's just too stressful. All of a sudden, Jacob was one whole month old and we'd only discussed the issue once. Maybe twice.

We both knew that we wanted to ask Tim's sister. She is the perfect match. We both adore her. And she adores our kids. Easy peasy. The real challenge was going to be finding a Godfather. Because, after all, what about THE CRITERIA?! So Tim says, without taking a breath, "What about your brother?" Once I regained consciousness, I asked him if he was serious. And then I asked him if he was sure. And he said yes. And I started crying.

You see, my brother lives in L.A. We see him maybe twice a year. And when it comes to criterion #1....well let me just say that when I told my mom who we were asking, her response was "are you hoping for a back-door conversion through Jacob?"

I finally called him last night to ask him if he'd do it. He provided a good deal of comedic effect when he asked me "how Christopher other one...why can't I think of his name?" were doing. But when I asked him if he'd be interested in the job, he was speechless.

When he finally spoke he said that he'd be honored. And that he was humbled. And then he thanked me profusely. The conversation ended with a slew of dates that he'd be available to come up, even if he had to come up the weekend after he was up here for something else, he'd make the trip to be here for Jacob. With this, I knew that we'd made the right choice again.

The agony was different this time. And I should know by now that God often works in ways that are opposite to what I'm expecting. The first time we were looking for the people who Christopher needed in his life. This time, maybe we've found the people who need Jacob in theirs.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Another day in paradise

Me: Christopher! Don't eat that! That's Jacob's boogie! OH. Too late.

Tim: Here, at least drink this so you can wash it down fast.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


This just in on the breastfeeding front. I've become rather intrigued by this whole situation. I think that this follow up article says it all.

Monday, July 7, 2008

It's in November, if you were wondering. Gifts - lots and lots of them - are quite welcome.

About five weeks before Jacob was born, I was given the GREATEST GIFT EVER. Two of my dearest, bestest girlfriends in the WORLD came out to see me. What started out as a THIRTIETH birthday present for one of us (a surprise visit from the other two) quickly morphed into a THIRTIETH birthday present for all three of us from our beloved husbands. Because this is the year in which we all turn THIRTY. Although, it's worth noting that I will turn THIRTY last. It was such a great week. This visit was nearly three years in the making, and we were all due. No one had any grand ideas of great adventures - we were really just looking forward to being together. Getting pedicures. Drinking coffee. Talking. So that's exactly what we did. We did spend a day in San Francisco playing tourist. And we did drive up to Sonoma to go wine tasting. But that's the extent of it.

As much fun as I had with my sisters during their visit, I mention it here only as a backdrop to a greater story. The story of the day I saw a naked lady in the ice cream shop. A day that will live in infamy.

The day we attempted to go wine tasting was simply lovely, despite the fact that we really only stopped at one winery, as our main goal for the day was to simply explore. The "wine tasting experience" was not our ultimate goal that day. This, of course, was a good thing considering the fact that I was 9 months pregnant at that time and most likely scandalized everyone who saw me waddling around the marketplace and leaning up against the wine bar. Honestly! I've never felt so conspicuous in my life. It didn't matter that I never once even held a wine glass in my hand - I could just feel the judgmental eyes of others boring into my head. Or my belly, as the case may be.

I suppose that was fitting, though, as this is quickly to morph into a post about judgment.

So after the winery, which was LOVELY by the way, we hopped into the car and drove to Sonoma. What a charming - and EXPENSIVE - little town. We parked in the main square, right on the corner of the park, and ambled in and out of the little shops and boutiques. It was hot. We were (not really) hungry. We stopped for ice cream.

As we waited there in line I recalled seeing a stroller as we'd walked in the door. Being mere days away from being a stroller mommy again, I turned around to look for the baby. There he was in all of his squishy cuteness, sitting on his mommy's lap right by the door. What a cute little fluff he was. I couldn't take my eyes off him. I admit, I was staring.

And then, all of a sudden, I saw IT. I was probably so much in shock that I stared some more before I figured out that I should look away. And then? Then I was MORTIFIED. That cute little bundle of squishiness was nursing away at his mommy's breast that happened to be FULLY EXPOSED AND HANGING OUT FOR THE WORLD TO SEE. Mommy was wearing a button down shirt and had simply unbuttoned her shirt to feed her baby. And she had NO QUALMS about the fact that she MAY AS WELL HAVE BEEN NAKED in the middle of Ben and Jerry's. Had I a sugar cone I could have gouged! out! my! eyes! and yet the memory would still be there.

Now, I know we're all girls here... (Remember when you were a kid at a slumber party and you tried to be discreet when changing your clothes just because you're modest and you don't think the whole world needs to know all your secrets? And remember when, inevitably, someone would say "come on! we're all GIRLS here!" I HATED THAT.) ...BUT SERIOUSLY! I do not need to see that lady's secrets.

I mention this because I was just over at Spirit Daily yesterday and stumbled upon this article, which I really found fascinating. Since day one, I have nursed Christopher (and now Jacob) in public and really had no problem doing so. I've always been totally discreet, even to the point where if I was struggling keeping things private, I'd have Tim hold my blanket for me while I got everything situated. Always anticipating critical remarks and sideways glances, I've been surprised on more than one occasion by the positive feedback. Some women have even complimented me on my bravery, of all things. They've shared with me how they were always too afraid of people saying mean things to feed their own babies in public.

The one place I've never nursed, though, is at Mass. This is not because I think it inappropriate by any means, but simply because I'm just not comfortable doing so. The details intimidate me. And, okay, the only clothes that fit well enough to wear to Mass don't really fit well enough to nurse properly. (Too tight here, too lumpy there. Argh.) That being said, I've always admired other moms who I've seen nursing their baby and peacefully soaking in the homily while I've been in the back bouncing my son up and down, up and down, up and down JUST TO MAINTAIN THE PEACE. I've often wondered to myself how many years will pass before I am actually able to pay attention at Mass again.

So I read this article by this woman, and then I read the comments. And then I was appalled. And then I tried to leave her a supportive comment. And then I kept typing and typing and typing! And then? Then! Blogger wouldn't accept my comment.

And so was born this post.

Thus, I extend my support to her, and all other breastfeeding mothers who are simply trying to care for their babies modestly and discreetly. For whatever reason, so many passersby are uncomfortable enough with breastfeeding that I really think we need to help them out a little, not by hiding in our homes until our children are old enough to eat with a fork and spoon...but by going out with our children and FEEDING THEM WHEN THEY ARE HUNGRY.

Perhaps we can just remember to unbutton our shirt from the bottom up, rather than the top down? Okay ice cream lady?