Monday, October 31, 2011

Cooper and Penny's 2011 Halloween

We didn't go to our church's Fall Festival tonight due to illness; Cooper's getting over his virus, which he gave to Mom and Val's Mom, and Penny's been very congested, so we stayed home for Halloween. Which worked out great. And he was just so adorable toddling around with his cape billowing behind him as he held his pumpkin and the flashlight.

Cooper enjoyed his first year trick-or-treating around the cove. He was shy sometimes, but mostly he just wanted to go next door to see their "choo choo," which is really a horse-driven evil carriage with wheels that look like a train, so for the past month he's asked to see the "choo choo" about 15 times a day.

Penny of course didn't care, but I'm sure she enjoyed being pushed in the stroller by her Mommy while her big brother went door to door getting "treats!" Which he then wanted all opened as soon as we got home. Maybe he won't notice that Mommy and Daddy get three-fourths of it!

Jeff's 2011 MLB Predictions in Review

AL EAST - Boston. Actual: Dang Yanks. On August 1, if you had told me, "The Sox will implode and all we'll be talking about in October is fried chicken, drinking beer and playing video games in the clubhouse and Theo is president of the Cubs," I would have been confused, at the least.

AL CENTRAL - Minnesota. Actual: Detroit.

AL WEST - Texas. Actual: Texas. Hey, got one!

WILD CARD - Dang Yankees. Actual: Tampa Bay.

DIVISION SERIES - Red Sox over Minnesota, Dang Yanks over Texas. Actual: Detroit vanquished the Yanks, Texas took care of the Rays.

ALCS - Red Sox throttle Dang Yanks. Actual: Texas over Detroit. Back-to-back trips to the World Series for the Rangers.

NL EAST - Philadelphia. Actual: Phillies. Easy peasy.

NL CENTRAL - Milwaukee. Actual: Yes indeedy, the Brew Crew won.

NL WEST - San Francisco. Actual: Holy cow, Arizona ran away with the West. Who knew?

WILD CARD - Atlanta. Actual: St. Louis slipped past the choking Braves on the last game of the season, which would be monumental if not for a similar collapse that involved fried chicken, drinking beer and playing video games in the clubhouse.

DIVISION SERIES - Phillies over Milwaukee, Atlanta over San Francisco. Actual: Milwaukee beat Arizona and St. Louis surprised Philly.

NLCS - Phillies beat Braves. Actual: More surprises: St. Louis over a Milwaukee squad more interested in celebratory mugging than hitting a curve ball.

WORLD SERIES - Red Sox beat Phillies. Actual: St. Louis over Texas in seven games. I wouldn't have even guessed the Cards would make the playoffs even as late as Sept. 25.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Cooper and Penny's visit from Scott and Jenn

Aunt Jenn and Uncle Scott were in town last Friday and couldn't get enough of their new niece and adorable nephew!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Precious Penny's One-Month Birthday

Penny is due tomorrow.
Well, that's what the doctors said nearly nine months ago.
In reality, as you can tell by all the pictures, Penelope Rose is a beautiful little baby who enjoys a big glass of milk, long naps and sleeping in her car seat during Mommy and Daddy's trips to Target and Texas Roadhouse.
Sometimes it's hard to believe it's already been a month, sometimes it feels like it's been more than a month. And that includes the first 10 days that she spent in the NICU, with us going back and forth to St. Francis-Bartlett.
Nowadays we're still setting into a routine, in part because we've been blessed with a lot of help. Val's mom stayed with us a few days last week, and my Mom is coming this week for a few days to help out. So it will be next week before we finally have a full week of having to live on reduced sleep for good.
At least, for now, we secretly hope that Penny is awake for the others' overnight turn, but we know there's some rest on the horizon. There won't be soon.
When we are on our own, our schedule looks something like this:
2 a.m. - Jeff wakes up to change and feed Penny, then lays her back down to get ready for work.
5 a.m. - Val wakes up to change and feed Penny, then lays in bed wishing she could get back to sleep before ...
6:30 ish - Cooper wakes up, Val takes care of him.
8 a.m. - Val changes and feeds Penny, who might stay awake for a few hours while Cooper plays and they try to go outside.
11 a.m. - Val changes and feeds Penny.
Noon - Jeff gets home.
1 p.m. - Jeff and Cooper take naps. The last few weeks, however, I've allowed a bad habit of letting him nap with me. I will regret this when it's time to get him back in his crib for naps. Assuming Penny's not too squirmy, Val tries to nap, too, in Penny's room.
2 p.m. - Val changes and feeds Penny.
3 p.m. - Jeff and Cooper wake up. Playtime, outside time.
5 p.m. - Someone changes and feeds Penny, others try to make dinner. Try to keep Penny awake for a few hours.
6:30 p.m. - Cooper's bath time.
7:30 p.m. - Cooper's bedtime.
8 p.m. - Jeff changes and feeds Penny, Val tries to get in bed and early to sleep.
9 p.m. - Jeff puts Penny down, goes to sleep.
11 p.m. - Val wakes up to change and feed Penny.
Hopefully this will all work through the holidays and until Penny is sleeping through the night.
She's eating well, hasn't been sick and sleeps great. So far, so good. She's pretty squirmy in her bassinet all swaddled up, but that's normal for babies, I'm told. Cooper wouldn't stay swaddled past two weeks. He could fight his way out of any baby burrito I tried to wrap him in. She can kick her way out of the blanket, but thus far hasn't bested Houdini by getting out of the swaddling blanket with velcro.
One of the best parts is that our mini Cooper is handling his little sister just swell. He likes to watch her in the bassinet, and when she cries he'll look at you concerned and said, "Uh-oh Penny!" He also likes to try and give her his cars or his lovey - his favorite blanket is actually a burping cloth - and he hasn't exhibited any signs of being too jealous other than trying to crawl on you while we're feeding her.
He gets plenty of attention, I think, since she mostly sleeps, so for now I think we're okay. When she's big enough to play, well, it could change, but we're hoping that they'll keep each other company while Mommy and Daddy take a five-minute breather once an hour or so!
(I'm sure there's more to add, but I'll leave that to my Darling Valerie, who spends all day and all night immersed in and outnumbered by Team Cooper & Penny.)

Lacking nothing in 2012

Here's how I'm guessing the conversation went yesterday when new Red Sox GM Ben Cherington told pitcher John Lackey that he's having Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire 2012 season: 

GM: Your elbow is shot, John. You'll be out the entire season next year.

Lackey: Huh? I'm feeling fine.

GM: I can tell, you're a little limp in your arm.

Lackey: For real, I'm holding fried chicken, beer and playing video games right now!

GM: No, no, I see it going out any minute.

A reminder of Lackey's 2011 statistics: 12-12, 6.41 ERA. He is 26-23 with a 5.26 ERA since signing a five-year, $82.5 million deal before the 2010 season.

Penny and her proud Daddy

Uncle Rob and Aunt Mary came for a visit to see precious Penny!

Cooper likes to try to give Penny his toys. It's so cute ...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Penny gets a visit with Nana

Nana gets a treat with some special Penny time ...

Naptime is special time for Daddy and Cooper ...

Mommy and Cooper enjoy some cuddle time with his Thomas bucket ...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Cooper's buckets

My boy may not care about candy or trick-or-treating, but he does love buckets to put stuff in!

Random links on the Occupy Wall Street silliness:

- My favorite headline isn't exactly about the protests, but it certainly would fit: "More Crazy Donkey Shows Rescheduled"

- They're not very good at math: "The mere fact that the protest is still going strong after 25 days is means it has met one of its goals: Organizers said from the start that they hoped to sustain their demonstration for two months."

- The Left is trying to make these unwashed drum-banging hippies into their own version of the popular Tea Party uprising.

Oh sure, it's like the same thing. Remember when the Tea Party went poopy on police cars?

No? How about when they sent lawmakers threatening mails saying it is "time to kill the wealthy?" Don't remember that part?

How about when they shouted "'Kill the Cops!" during protests?

Well, other than that, it's the same thing.

- The poor downtrodden protestors have to use their kayaks in Chicago to make their point.

Saturday, October 15, 2011