Friday, June 26, 2009

On the Moving Front, Part 3

There is finally light at the end of the tunnel! In less than 24 hours, we start loading the moving truck. I've spent the last several days taping, bubble wrapping, and playing tetris to try & get as many objects as I could into one box. As of yesterday, I amassed quite the pile of boxes and containers on one side of the living room.

It's impressive, no?

And that's not even all of our possessions. We still have all our furniture and last minute odds & ends. Last night after dinner, Gregg brought all of the boxes from the living room down to the garage and stacked them by the door so that tomorrow morning he and the guys (his brother, my dad) can just quickly load them in the truck without having to constantly go up & down the stairs.

Oh, our garage sale went really well last Saturday. We made $269 and got rid of stuff we didn't want to move again. Gregg put out signs by our street and the highway before 8am, and it was like moth to a flame. People started swarming our lawn two hours before the sale was actually supposed to start, which turned out to be a good thing because it began to drizzle around 10. The rain continued through noon and we decided to pack it in shortly afterwards since we were getting soaked.

I'm so glad most of the packing is done. It was a challenge to get all that completed while trying to also watch a ten month old who doesn't stay put in one place for very long. There are a few more things that I'll throw in remaining boxes later today, and some clothes & toiletries will go in a suitcase after we get dressed tomorrow. At times, I felt completely overwhelmed with the amount of stuff that needed to be packed up. Every time I turned around, there was something else I forgot about. The problem with the kitchen was that there were so many breakable items and really big appliances that took up an entire box by themselves. But it's over. Now I just have to unpack all of these boxes. Ugh.

I think I would be remiss in not mentioning something about Michael Jackson, the day after his sudden death. His music was pretty incredible, though his lifestyle was certainly strange. I can't hear "Beat It" or "Billie Jean" without thinking about my childhood. In the early '80s my parents would play their Thriller record ad nauseum. My dad taped the making of Thriller (which I'm not sure was entirely legal at the time) and my sister & I scared ourselves silly watching the full length version of the music video. A few years later, we enjoyed watching Moonwalker whenever they'd play it on MTV and made up our own lyrics & dance moves to all the songs. In the eighth grade, my best friend and I listened to my Dangerous cd almost every time we got together and thought it was the coolest album ever. Regardless of his eccentricities, Michael Jackson's music was always on in the background of my life growing up. He was truly a music legend.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

On the Moving Front, Part 2

The moving process is chugging along slowly but surely. I've been trying to pack some boxes here and there whenever I get the chance. Colton's room is mostly all packed up; I've left out a few favorite toys and stuffed animals for him to play with until we actually do move. I finally organized and boxed up his "old" clothes that no longer fit him. There were so many that I could barely get the box closed- pajamas, onesies, pants, socks, shoes, coveralls. It will remain in storage until we know whether our second child is a boy or girl. If we have a girl, I'll either donate the clothes to Goodwill or gift them to a friend or family member who has a boy.

We decided to hold off on our garage sale until this weekend, because of the rain last Saturday. We are posting ads about it on Craigslist throughout the week and hoping we get a good turn out! The weather forecast for this Saturday is really stinky, but I hope it's wrong or the thunderstorms just hold out until after 2pm.

I finished digging through boxes in the garage, trying to determine what goes and what stays. I filled about 12 trash bags full of stuff that we're not keeping. In my search, I uncovered almost $20 in loose change, a crumpled five dollar bill in an old jacket pocket, school papers and projects dating back to when I was in junior high, an entire library's worth of books, and a whole lot of spiders (shudder). We even still have a lot of the equipment that was used when Gregg ran his own business that's been closed now for nearly four years.

I'm feeling good about our progress so far. The biggest task will be packing up the kitchen, so I'm saving that for last. Every time I think "we don't have that much stuff", I end up finding more & more things which reveals we really do have that much stuff. Sigh. Of course, the weather these past few days has been pretty craptastic (dark, gloomy, rain) so I have very little motivation to do anything move related. It's just a good day to curl up with a cup of coffee on the couch and read a book. I'm seriously wondering what happened to the nice, sunny June we were promised after such a long harsh winter. Okay, so we were never promised anything- I'm just complaining. :)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

10 Months

Colton's reached the double digits! In about eight more weeks, we'll be celebrating his first birthday. Crazy.

For some reason, 10 months just seems so much older than 9 months. Colton's gross motor skills have really taken off recently. He doesn't exactly crawl, but he does move around quickly on all fours. It's more like creeping, I think. He never seems to go forward in a straight line, but he always gets to where he wants to go. Colton continually gets up on his hands and knees with his tummy up off the floor and rocks back & forth like he's going to crawl, but then his legs slide backwards and he's flat on his stomach again! He can also stand pretty well with assistance now, holding onto my hands or a piece of furniture.

He still does not have any teeth, but it hasn't stopped him from eating. We've moved him up to Stage 3 foods, since the portions are slightly larger and the consistency is chunkier. It's still hit or miss with me feeding him from a spoon, so I've started spreading out the contents of the jar on the highchair tray and letting him feed himself. He seems to tolerate me spoon feeding him better in the morning, when he's less cranky, than in the evening. Colton tried a few new foods this past month too like broccoli, steak, mashed potatoes, and spaghetti & meatballs. Lately he really wants to eat whatever we have on our plates. He'll lean forward, eyes wide, with an expression that's like, "Can I have some, Mom, huh? Can I, can I, can I?"

Even though he's eating more solids and continuing to drink the same amount of formula, it seems like his weight gain is tapering off. He only gained one pound between his most recent doctor's visit, on June 1, and the one before that, on April 6. And he dropped from the 90th percentile in weight to the 75th during that time also. I'm not too concerned; actually I'm kinda relieved that the weight gain has slowed down. He's still a very healthy and happy baby!

Just in the past week or so, Colton has started forming the "m" sound with his mouth. I could have sworn that he said mom the other day. :) I've been signing the word "more" to him every time I offer him more of something. One day six months from now he might catch on and sign back! I really do think he was trying to imitate the actual word a few days ago just as I was about to place another handful of Puffs in front of him. You can disagree, but I know what I heard. Oh, and apparently my son thinks the word "poop" is hysterical. I was changing his dirty diaper and said, "Somebody made a stinky poop", and he burst into laughter. Typical boy.

Colton discovered his love for banging toys on the table and dropping them on the floor. It drives me crazy sometimes that I am constantly picking them up. His favorite toys include soft blocks, nesting/stacking cups, his beach ball, and this freaky looking rubber shark that he got at the doctor's office. He still enjoys racing around in his walker and likes to grab things off of the tv stand, end tables, and shelf in the living room.

His sleep is still really good. I'm so thankful I have a child that doesn't fight taking his naps or going down for the night. As long as there aren't any other distractions in the room, he will usually go right out. If I stay in his room to put away laundry or something, then he'll want to stay awake because he doesn't want to miss anything. Most of the time Colton doesn't like me to rock him to sleep anymore. I always try to cuddle with him a little bit before putting him to bed, especially at night. He's started trying to push my arm away as I'm holding him in the rocker. I feel kinda sad about it, but I know it's time for him to just fall asleep on his own. So instead of fighting him, I place him in the crib and tell him goodnight or have a good nap and that I love him.

My little boy is certainly growing up! Here are some pictures (of course):

Monday, June 08, 2009

On the Moving Front...

... we have finally found a place to live!! We'll be renting a condo in a town about thirty minutes from where we are now, in what seems like a very family friendly community. It's a better commute for Gregg since it is less than five minutes from the highway, too. There is a pool and clubhouse in the development which we can use, and a playground is within walking distance. A fairly new shopping center is also just a short drive away with a Sam's Club, Babies 'R Us, Applebees, Walmart, etc. It is farther away from friends and family than we'd like, but it has a lot more advantages than any other place we looked at closer. And with me not having a car right now, I can walk around the development with Colton & Tess or go to the playground and actually meet some people like other SAHM's.

We are moving the last weekend of June, which means we don't have too much time to pack up and/or get rid of things. I am amazed (and overwhelmed) at the amount of crapola we've acquired and moved from place to place in our 6.5 years of marriage. I'm wondering why we even kept half the stuff we have. I know Gregg wants to keep things "in case we'll use them again someday". I'm like that to a certain degree, but now I'm at the point where I'd really just rather back a dumpster up to the house and start heaving.

I've been going through and listing stuff on Craigslist like crazy, and have actually sold over $200 worth of stuff last week. We're planning on also having a massive garage sale this Saturday to get rid of more things. Whatever we don't sell will probably be donated to the Salvation Army or just chucked.

Since we signed the lease agreement and paid our security deposit on Saturday, Gregg has already contacted the oil company, the electric company, and the cable company to have everything switched over. All we really have to do now is PACK. Have I mentioned before how much I hate packing?? We tried to unpack as little as possible when we moved back to NJ in November, knowing that we wouldn't be in this house all that long. It's still an annoying and daunting task, though. I just want to be settled in our new place and get rid of as much stuff as we can so that the less we bring with us, the easier the move will be. :)

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Updates Again

Here is just another update in the life and times of the B household. On Saturday, Gregg and I went out on our date while my mother-in-law watched Colton. This was only the second time we've been out together alone since he was born. We dropped him off around 5 at her house, then drove to downtown Ridgewood a few towns away to have dinner. It was such a nice night that we decided to get a table outside. The food was very good, but the service unfortunately left a little to be desired.

After we finished our meal, we stopped in a coffee shop and quick fed the meter before taking a walk around with our drinks. There were dozens of other people milling about, mostly couples, but there were a few young families with kids in strollers which of course made me think of Coltie! We walked hand in hand, something we haven't done a lot of in the past nine months. Either one or both of us always has a hand full carrying the infant carrier or pushing the stroller when we go out.

We took our time heading back towards Gregg's parents' and enjoyed a nice drive through various neighborhoods that were all in full spring bloom. When we arrived to pick up Colton, he was sitting with Grandma on the couch in his pjs watching tv because he refused to go to sleep! My MIL said he was very good for her, but he just would not go to sleep in the crib they have. He also fussed a lot during his diaper change, which isn't unusual since he does that with me. She also said that after about an hour, he started to realize that we were gone. As soon as Colton saw me, his face crumpled so I picked him up right away and kissed him. Then all was right with the world. I really appreciated being able to go out for a few hours and do the husband & wife thing now that we're mommy & daddy 24-7.

Last night, we took Colton for his 9 month well visit. He's in the 75th percentile this time for both height and weight. He grew two inches and gained only one pound since the last appointment, putting him at 22 lbs and 29 inches. The doctor wasn't concerned that he isn't pulling up to stand yet. Everything with him looked fine and he got three more shots, to catch him up from what he missed during the time we didn't have insurance. Colton screamed throughout the entire visit, and I felt so bad for him. He kept looking at me with this petrified look on his face and tears in his eyes. I almost started crying myself! We were in and out of there in under an hour, the good thing about having an appointment on a Monday evening. Now we don't have to go back until Colton's a year old. I can't believe that'll be in just 2 1/2 months.

In other news, I've been throwing stuff out and putting things on Craigslist in preparation for another move. We knew from the beginning that the place we're in now was only temporary, and we're very grateful we've been able to stay here as long as we have, but now it's time for us to find somewhere else. The search for a place to live thus far has been fruitless and frustrating. They've either been too far away from Gregg's job, or too expensive, or within our budget but, shall we say, crappy? Then there was the condo that this lady who was moving out of state wanted to rent to us, but it turned out that it's a low income housing unit and she's not allowed to rent it out. Someone found out and snitched on her, so right after she offered it to us she had to withdraw the offer. We're going to look at a place tonight when Gregg gets off of work, and hopefully it's the right fit. I'm tired of looking and not knowing where we're going to end up. Hopefully I'll have some good news to post soon!