Friday, September 18, 2009

Gearing up for preschool!

Matthew had open house for his school this morning and it went great. He'll be starting on Tuesday and going 2 mornings a week from 9-12. I'm excited for us both... for him, I am really looking forward to him making new friends and enjoying new experiences. He's such a social kid and I think it's going to be great for him. For me, frankly, I'm looking forward to 2 mornings a week to myself for a month, and then I think it'll be nice to have that time to bond with baby girl after she's born.

So we went this morning, which he said he didn't want to do unless there were going to be lollipops involved. I did him one better: not only would I give him a lollipop afterwards if he was a good boy, but I was pretty sure he'd see his friend Henry there as well. That was enough convincing for him! When we got there, he left me right away and went over to play with a huge group of girls in the kitchen/play house area. I was really surprised to see the classroom so boy/girl segregated at their age! Eventually he did make his way to the other side (where he found his amazing discovery - the lizard that's the class pet) and he had to come running to show me that.

Any time he found something really cool, he'd come get me and take my hand to go show it to me. I think he's really going to enjoy it. My expectation for next week: I think Tuesday is going to go great, and Friday will be more of a challenge when he realizes that he's going to be there without me. But I still think he's going to love it overall.
There is an older group (I think 3.5+) across the hall that's already in session and at one point he broke out of the room and ran across into the other class. They were having story time and were all sitting in a circle, so he just sat down in the circle with them and was perfectly content there. They also had a room full of very cool toys (which were much more easily identified than in his classroom b/c his room was filled with parents & other kids!) and he was pretty annoyed that I insisted on taking him out of there. He nearly lost that promised lollipop with the semi-tantrum he threw over me taking him out of the older kids' classroom... but I did end up giving it to him anyway ;).
They have 2 little bathrooms plus the plastic potties there, and he used the bathroom while we were there. I think he liked how short the toilet was, plus the novelty of it. He peed in the bathroom at home again before his nap, so he's definitely making progress.
Anyway, all in all a good morning for Matthew, and I'm glad. I think he's going to really love having the 2 mornings a week to socialize, etc. I also liked that when he was at the lizard tank, one of the teachers' helpers picked him up and was letting him feed the lizard. He clearly had no problem with her holding him, etc (and I was all the way across the room at the time). So he definitely seems to be fairly well adjusted. I still think we'll have some challenges with leaving him there without me staying, but I know he'll get through it quickly.

So that was our official start to preschool and I think it was a success! He just woke up from his nap in a much better mood than he went down in... so I better strike while the iron is hot and get some stuff done while he feels like it :).

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Free nursing covers (pay for shipping & handling)

I just wanted to share this with anyone who is interested - got this email today from Udder Covers, they are offering their covers for free with promo code backorder1. Below is the email:

Hi friend,

I wanted to say thank you for ordering a nursing cover and let you know that we are now running a limited time promotion for 100% off ALL our covers (patterned and non-patterned)! You can get ANY of our covers for free ~ you just pay the S&H! We know that you support breastfeeding -so if you're not currently nursing, they make great baby shower and Holiday gifts. The promo code is "backorder1".

Go to , click on "Shop Now" where it will then display all the nursing covers we offer as well as other products and sets. Select the product you would like and you will automatically be directed to the center of the page where you can enter in the promo code! This backorder promotion will give you a $32.00 discount off your total order no matter what you put in your cart! This promotion code is valid once per transaction so order as many times as you would like. Let all your friends know too!

Again, thank you! We could not have offered this discount without your past support!

Jenny Pierce

Udder Covers

Udder Covers is a DBA of Milk Bands LLC

Monday, August 17, 2009

The well-traveled child

I just discovered this web site by accident, and while it seems funny to be reading a travel guide for our own city, I love that they have a whole list of suggested activities for kids in NYC. Sometimes David and I are at a loss for what to do with Matthew, and this is a great resource for alternatives. They also have other cities, big and small, for when you're close to home or traveling. It's important to us that Matthew learn to travel fairly well, since it's something we love to do. I do wish that I had found this site before the summer, and all of our travels. Live and learn!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A "Dear John(nies)" you'd LOVE to receive!!

I'm sure that when most of us think of hospital gowns, the word "luxury" doesn't come up in the same thought. When Matthew was born, I had one of the hospital-issue gowns and didn't think twice about it. It wasn't until afterwards that I saw that "bring your own" gowns existed and I thought about how nice that would have been, to look good in pictures and be comfortable at the same time. So I decided I might just need one when baby #2 came.

If you do a little research, you'll find that there are several "BYO" hospital gowns out there. I really don't like to badmouth a product, but first I tried "Girlie Gowns" and I'll be honest... I think I'd be better off sticking with the standard hospital one. I thought they looked cute, and the price wasn't too bad, so I gave it a shot. I was so disappointed - the pattern was cuter in the picture than in person, and the fabric was stiff and uncomfortable. The fit wasn't much better... I looked like I was wearing a small tent!

I was going to give up on the "BYO" gown since I figured it's really more of a "want" than a "need" item... but I was SO lucky to receive one from dearjohnnies. Let me tell you - what a difference! As soon as I opened the package, I was impressed with how soft and comfy the fabric is. The pattern (they sent me a "Finlay" gown) is adorable - soft green with white polka dots. I was so excited that I tried it on that instant, and was so happy with the fit! Like it was actually made with a pregnant woman in mind! I love my dearjohnnies gown. I guess it's true when they say that you get what you pay for - at $68, the DJ gown is a bit on the indulgent side, but it is so worth it! Can we say "baby shower gift?" They have so many gorgeous fabrics to choose from (check out the "Mimi" gown in the photo) as well as options for monogramming, matching robes and blankets for baby!

Aside from how much I love the fit and fabric of the dearjohnnies gown, I really like that these gowns are for more than just laboring Moms. They would make a wonderful and thoughtful gift for a friend who has to be hospitalized for chemo or other medical treatments. It's not just about looking cute... it's about being comfortable and feeling good about yourself. If you buy the "Lucy" gown, 10% of the sale goes to breast cancer research!

The company also has a "dearjohnnies junior" line for children. I hate to think of anyone's little one needing to be hospitalized... but it's a great way to give them a little "pick me up" and help them get better faster! And I absolutely love that 5% of the kids' gowns sales goes to St. Jude's Children's Hospital, a charity that David and I regularly give to anyway.

So I have to say a huge "THANK YOU!" to dearjohnnies for my gorgeous Finlay gown... I really have my eye on the Coco, Rory and Pia fabrics, and now that I know I'll be in the hospital for 4 days, I think I may have to go ahead and splurge :). Plus you get $10 off *each gown* if you order two or more gowns, so that's reason enough for me! Please go and check out the entire line at

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Back home!

After more than 2 weeks away, we are back home in NJ. We had a wonderful vacation and I'm really tired from the 15-hour drive that got us home at 3 this morning. To make matters worse, Matthew woke up as we got home and decided it was time to party, so I didn't get to bed until 5 a.m. Needless to say, I'm pooped! It was totally worth it though. So, sorry for being M.I.A. - I'm glad to be back. My mailbox was full of cool things when I returned, that I can't wait to tell you about!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Awesome wraps...

I bought myself (several) of these wraps and am just in love - I can't wait until I have a real baby to put in them because for now, I'm trying them out with Matthew's baby! My friend Kristen has a giveaway on her blog ( for a pretty purple tie-dyed one, and Rachel, the owner/creator of Wombfruits, is also "auctioning" one off on hyena cart where you get your choice of colors for only $18! The normal retail price is $30-$40 depending on the color you want... they are so beautiful, soft and well-made in person. I can't say enough good things about them!

Check out Rachel's blog and the link to the drawing on hyena cart:

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Gaining perspective

A good friend of mine has a friend from school who just lost his 3-year old son Christopher due to an accident involving the family swimming pool. My friend is naturally really shaken by this, and while I never met the P family (not using their name out of respect), hearing about it has caused me to do a lot of thinking over the past week.

I spend a lot of time thinking about "life" these days - I'm surrounded by new life, especially since I have baby girl growing inside me, getting bigger each day and making her presence known with more frequent and stronger kicks and punches. I spend my days with one very lively little boy, who manages to suck all of the energy out of my body by the time I get into bed each night, though I never seem to recover it all by the next morning. There are some particularly challenging days where I'll say to David, "I think this kid is trying to kill me!" and though I'm joking, I feel like I need to express the reality - that in two short years, one small person has become my reason for living. Putting aside all the jokes and mom-plaints, I simply can't imagine what my life would be like without him.

So here I am, contemplating what no parent ever wants to consider - besides the shuddered thought upon first hearing of someone else's tragedy, and then the conviction that "that would never happen to us." I'm certain that the P family thought that it would never happen to them either, and yet they are now dealing with an unspeakable loss. What I am most amazed by is that they are a couple who are rooted in faith, and in a statement that they issued as part of Christopher's obituary, they said that they know he's in a better place. I give them so much credit for being able to turn their grief over to a higher power.

I thought about what we would do if, God forbid, anything happened to one of our children. As I've mentioned before, David and I were married for a while before Matthew was born, together for a total of 7 years before our duo became a threesome. I'm grateful for the time we spent together before adding a baby because I believe it gave us a strong foundation from which to raise our family. Many couples face challenges when a baby enters the mix, and while we were no exception, I'm glad to say that having Matthew has made us stronger as a couple as we've encountered and overcome those challenges along the way. I know there will be more- not only from Matthew but very soon as we add baby girl to the mix, and I'm hopeful that we will continue to face the obstacles together and come out stronger in the end. But I think about what an amazing impact Matthew has had in his two years. I think about how our marriage, though strong on its own, has become cemented together by his presence.

There is not a day that goes by, no matter how frustrating or tiresome being a parent can be, when Matthew fails to make us laugh. Sometimes it's at how unbelievably stubborn he can be (at which point, each of us silently proclaims him "your son" to the other); sometimes it's how sweet and endearing his personality is. Those of you who know me well know that we've had our share of pregnancy losses in the 3 years, something I don't wish on anyone. But the idea of having Matthew taken from us is just too much to think of. There's just no comparison. He's become his own person, with feelings and opinions (not that we always like them!) You can see each day as he takes in new knowledge and finds a way to apply it to the world around him. I feel like not having him would be taking away the very air we breathe. In two years, he has managed to give David a reason to get up and go to work every morning, while hating that he has to be gone all day. He has given me endless opportunities to learn things again for the first time, to see the wonder of the world - a world that we often consider mundane and boring - through a child's eyes. He has reminded us of how precious life is, how joyous, funny, crazy and maddening it can be all at the same time.

I'm immensely saddened by the loss of a little boy whom I never met. My heart and prayers go out to the P family as they have to wake up each day and realize that he is gone. I pray that Christopher's life, though cut short, was not in vain. I know that he has made an impact on David and I, as we have taken the time every day in the past week to stop and realize what an incredible blessing we have been given. We are so grateful to have been trusted with Matthew's life and to have the amazing chance to raise him. Sometimes we take the little things for granted... sometimes we need to be reminded to stop and thank God for a baby's laughter, for the way he smells after a bath, for how angelic he looks while he sleeps. I am so incredibly sorry for Christopher's loss, and I am and will continue to be thankful for my son (and eventually, my daughter) each and every day. I hope that you'll do the same.