Every day is a collection of moments. Each week, each month and each year they become our memories.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Wanted: Baby Clothing Designer

So I’m pretty maxed out in terms of projects I am equipped to take on, but in the event a children’s clothing designer wants some inspiration, please send that person to me.

I am surprised, shocked, and frankly a bit in awe of the limited selection in the ridiculously huge market of infant clothing.  I don’t ask for much, but there are a few items that I feel would make a huge difference.  That wording might be too soft.  It actually bugs me that these items aren’t widely available.   (I’m obviously in no position to be going to high end retailers).

  1. Cozy PJ’s without the feet in them, with a zipper and no snaps, and for crying out loud skip the hood.   She can sleep in fleece separates.   She can sleep in light cotton.   I can get creative, yes.  But in a market as large as baby clothes, I don’t understand why I need to be.  She is currently sleeping in PJ’s that are 2 sizes too big (so the sleeves are rolled up about 3 inches each) because they were the only option I could find. 
  2. A sweater, sweatshirt, warm up jacket..  any extra layer on top….WITHOUT a hood.   I love hoods.  You know me I live in hoods.  I am wearing a hood right now.   Through the miracle of hand-me-downs and gifts Tessie is the proud owner of 10-15 sweaters and light fleece jackets with hoods.   Sure, SUPER cute  But that hood is in her way all the time.  She moves her head like Stevie Wonder when she is wearing it and when she sleeps I feel I need to take it off of her all together.   No good.   I would kill for a cardigan.   In any color.  (but mostly bright green).  Seriously.   Just a cardigan.
  3. Knee high socks.  Babies are not known for keeping their socks on and mine is no different.   She has actually found a way to use her flexible big toe to hook it around the opposing foot’s sock to peel it off.  (trying to get this on video). For some reason many baby socks barely come up to her ankles.  Seems like if they were knee highs or “trended closer to being knee highs” they just might stay on.  I know, I can buy legwarmers for her.  And I might have to.

I was hoping Heidi Klum would have solved this issue with her BabiesRUs clothing line, but she failed me.  If I had been desperately hoping for baby jeggings with zippered ankles or a ridiculously cute monster on a little boy shirt I’d be in business, but I just want my baby to be warm.   I don’t think I’m being unreasonable here. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Holidays with Tessie v1



Halloween costumes for the whole family.  Treat bags for Tessie.  Family pictures outside in November.   Christmas traditions.   Putting up a tree at 7512 for the first time EVER.   Holiday stockings.  Look out.  This is going to be a wild ride. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Rolling Over.. the gateway drug for babies


This baby is crazy town.   She rolled from back to front a week ago Saturday.   Two days later she rolled from front to back.   By the end of the week she was propelling herself in circles on the floor while on her stomach.  (Imagine my surprise when I put her down facing the dining room, went to dry my hair and came back to see her facing the TV).  Yesterday, and I swear this happened, she dug her toes into the floor and lifted her but way in the air.  It was sort of like a mini baby version of downward dog. She doesn’t just hold her head up she extends her arms and hold it WAY up.   And I see her focusing on things out of her reach and trying to move.   She can’t yet (thank goodness) but this is all moving way to fast for me.   10 days ago she couldn’t even roll over and today I feel like if I don’t watch my back she is going to sneak up behind me.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Some weekends are fun. This one wasn’t.

fall jacket 9-21-12

It all started on Friday.   It was one of those annoying days when nothing went right.  This includes Tessie and I waiting outside for a potential renter to come to my house.   The first person of course didn’t show and the second came 1/2 hour late so Tessie and I got colder and colder while it got darker and darker outside.   She finally fell asleep in my arms and then I showed the property.    Of course the tenants forgot so when he answered the door he said “hold on I have to put some shorts on”.   And the other tenant sat in her chair and told us about her bladder infection.  Then I learned the third tenant is smoking inside the house.  UG.   So all of this happens instead of me making dinner, putting the baby to bed, or grocery shopping for the weekend.  

Saturday the “Steve and Melissa Show” went to the Fairgrounds to work a Home Show together.   After a long crappy week we were in an 8x20 booth together all day.   It was quite fun, actually because ever since baby we haven’t worked together at a show so it felt like old times.   It would have been super awesome if there had been any homeowners walking through so we had a shot at writing some business out of it..  but whatever.  Shows like that are the worst because when no one is there you have no choice but to think about what the work you aren’t doing, the fun you aren’t having, and the baby you aren’t at home playing with.   You can’t get that time back.   And you paid to be there.  That is the worst of it.

9-23-12 show c 9-22-12 show a 9-22-12 show b 9-22-12 show d

Sunday Steve worked the show on his own. ( Not that it was any “work” because once again no one was there except vendors) and I stayed home with the cutie pie.   The super duper non napping cutie pie.  So somehow I don’t feel like I got anything fun or personal done even though I wasn’t working.   Now here it is Sunday night at 8:30.   Tessie is sleeping,  Steve is trying very hard to organize and clean out the garage, and I am watching the Emmy’s with a laptop on my lap. Gazing at at the gorgeous dresses that make those women one million times more put together than the “ in-my-pj’s-never-bothered-to-shower” look  I have.

We have (2) huge install jobs starting tomorrow,  a pile of projects stacking up on my desk, and all those annoying things from Friday still unresolved.   Steve will be on the go all day tomorrow an I am crossing my fingers that Tessie gives me at least one good solid nap so I can power through the work. 


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Good things come in threes!!


cereal collage 9-14

Last Friday night we gave her cereal for the first time! Exactly one year after we found out we were pregnant we gave her cereal.   It seems fun, but I have been bizarrely emotional about it… just not been ready to admit that she is big enough to need more than I can give her.   But her sleeping has been really off lately and she has been waking up earlier and earlier and then had a few days when she got up every 3 hours all night to eat.  For a baby that has been sleeping through the night since 8 weeks old…  I did not do well with this sudden lack of sleep again.   So I denied that maybe cereal was the answer for more than a few days.   And then I was ready.    Steve was home so we made it a whole event.  We started with some crazy family self portraits.  She looks into it, don’t you think?

family self portrait 9-15 family c 9-14 family b 9-14

Then we went for it, taking turns feeding her and watching her kick her legs with excitement.  

The very next morning she rolled over.  Since Steve was at the Market I had the video on her for a verrrrrrrry long time.  She was so close to rolling for so long…  so I was determined to catch her first flip to show her Dad.   I have a ridiculous amount of footage that resembles the first few 1/2 of this video.   So.. as you’ll hear….  I was AS surprised as she was when she finally rolled.  Love.

Finally, the weekend ended with a Sunday Family Day at Pat’s house where Tessie met her NewYork relatives, Mary, Selam and Yohannes.  

T with Yohannes, Mary & Pat 9-16 T and Selam 9-16

See?  Good things do come in threes!!!


Starting out September

originally written 9-1-12family pic at wedding 8-31-12

I find it funny that even though my blogs are basically an unedited stream of consciousness, I still sometimes start writing and then forget to finish or publish.    So we digress to Sept 1. Only two short weeks ago, but it definitely seems like old news!

Highlights from the beginning of the month:

  • Tessie has discovered her hands in a really big way.  She is aware of them all the time, and she is controlling them really well.  There is less of that crazy arm waving and more deliberate movement.  
  • Charlotte got married on Friday, August 31.  The day of the wedding she spent playing with Great Aunt Pat and even had her first bath in the baby tub.  (I couldn't pretend she fit in the sink any longer!)
  • The wedding was gorgeous.  Every detail was so pretty, and the weather could not have been better.   Sadly, our little stinker screamed bloody murder each time we brought her in to the reception room.   Steve and I took turns walking outside with her while the other visited inside.   Mom and Angie took her while we were eating, and when there was no longer any denying it, we head home.  I would have loved to enjoy some wine and dance a little, but she wouldn’t have it.  Luckily, we got a few great family shots before the screaming started.   Note the scowl on her face.  They call that foreshadowing.

 scowl 8-31 

  • The day after the wedding we went to Picone’s for a BBQ.   She was in much better spirits, flirting with everyone, and even napping outside in the stroller under a tree.   
  • Oh, and I tossed her this cloth book to look at while I showered and when I got out of the shower she was wearing it.   Like a vest. 

wear vest 8-31  bbq 9-1

So much happens on the weekends.  I am starting to wonder if that much happens every day and I am just too busy working to notice it.  Hmmm

Saturday, September 15, 2012

She enjoys visiting, shopping, grabbing…


T collage 9-14

It has been a typical fall week in Minnesota.  It has gone from 90 degrees and humid a few days ago and now its 63 and sunny.   I went from giving Tessie her frozen teether to enjoy while I ate popsicles, to obsessing about finding her a winter coat.  

We’ve gone a few adventures this week:

  • We went to Angie’s for an evening to hang with her and the boys.   They are obsessed with her; showering her with attention every second.  And Ben can say her name.  Sure, it sounds like “Duckie” but that just makes it cuter.
  • Steve, Tessie and I went to MOA on Friday to meet Angie and the boys in the park and then head up to the food court for her birthday lunch.    To actually sneak away in the middle of the work day to do something fun was kind of unheard of.  And very fun.  Ironically the chaos of the Mall was not as annoying to her as the chaos from the wedding a few weeks ago.  Maybe she is soothed by the promise of retail therapy. Who knows.
  • Speaking of which, we took a little drive to Burnsville last night to try and find a winter coat at Once Upon a Child… only to find out that they close at SIX on Friday nights.   Ridiculous.  So we went back today and walked out with two different coats for her at $17 total. They are the perfect coats; they are in great condition, and the cost offsets the Ugg boots I bought her last Sunday.  Winter can come whenever it wants, my baby will be toasty warm.   And lest you think I’m over eager… I remind you I am still in Minnesota.   It could get cold in 4 weeks or 4 months.   We just never know.

So what else?  In the last week or so it has become official that Tessie falls asleep better when she has something on the side of her face.  Specifically, she likes her little yellow bunny. Earlier today she actually untangled herself from the swaddle in the flannel receiving blanket so she could wad it up and put it by her cheek.   I, of course, cannot stop taking pictures of her sleeping.   She is the sweetest.

            t sleeping 9-10   t sleeping 9-15

In addition to holding on to her bunny at bed time, she is hanging on to toys every second. I plop her on the blanket with a few toys and the next thing I know she has grabbed on to one of them to hold or actually just started wearing it like a bracelet. I especially love when she wears the moose.  Don’t want him escaping!

moose bracelet 9-13 hang on toys 9-12 hang on book 9-12

That’s it for now!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Good things.

Today was not my typical crazy Monday.   Good things happened.   Nothing major or newsworthy, just generally good.  Well, except my father in law dis-located his finger so he is a bit uncomfortable.   So I guess I’ll have to bake a little treat to make him feel better.  And that is a good thing too.sleeping in office 9-10

I should note that some days I get the most work done in the office when I am there alone.  Or when everybody is sleeping.   They don’t always sleep in the office, right behind me so I can’t get to any of the files….but whatever.  I said good things happened.  I never said we weren’t all exhausted.


Chocolate Chip & Pretzel Cookie Bars.   As soon as the baby wakes up and my new friend John from Craigslist stops by to buy those windows, we are heading to the store to get food for the week and then we are baking.   And watching Bachelor Pad.   And eating.   In our PJ’s.   Perfect.



Tessie’s Thursday in Pictures

Yesterday was a big day.  After being completely worn out from the  beginning of the week I had zero expectations going in to yesterday.   Then I learned Steve would be gone the entire day working on services and running errands and writing up a job  (from a guy he met last November), so that really freed things up for me.sunflowers

I indulged in working at the dining room table so I could feel the cool air come in and see the sunshine.   I just bought some sunflowers to put in the bay window, too, so I had an extra little bit of happy in my sightline.  

Tessie darling was busy talking to herself in the mirror and investigating the little frog I attached to her activity gym.

T mat 8-30 T Mat 3 8-30 T mat 2 8-30

After lunch Grandma Kathy came over for a quick visit, and to continue working on the gardens she has planted for us.   She added this beautiful black mulch and I love it!garden.jpgrden  8-30

Mid-afternoon I gave up on the dining room table and we went down to the office.  After a minute or two Tessie seemed bored with her swing.   So I pulled out her enormous toy saucer to see if she was big enough for it yet.   Her eyes got super big when I grabbed it and she watched me carry it over her and put it in the middle of the room.   When I put her in it she was excited. Super smiley and then non stop action.  She literally did not know what to look at first.   I think she liked being able to “stand” and it didn’t take her long to figure out she could rotate around.  The next time I looked at her she had her back was to me.   Perfect.  I quickly did all the data entry I could find.

saucer 5 8-30  saucer 2 8-30 saucer 3 8-30 saucer 4 8-30 

When we were  done working for the day she watched me clean up the kitchen and make dinner.

 t bumbo 8-39

Then we went to watch some TV.   I sat on the floor next to her with my laptop working on her latest shutterfly album.   She hung out on he quilt and discovered that she was actually quite good at getting her thumb into her mouth. Perfect.  Now she always has something to chew on!

 T Thumb 8-30    I’m such a proud mama.  


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Hump Day and Other Confessions


I am not a fan of Wednesdays.  We expect Monday to be wild and unpredictable.  Tuesdays have promise to be better, and to allow some work to be done.   This rarely happens lately, so by Wednesdays I am completely frustrated.  Maybe it is just the work I’ve had lately, but there are just so many things that I work on every chance I get and they never get done.   My top priority for several weeks has been the exact same thing.   I got it done today.  I think.  But then, I’ve thought this previously too.   

Tessie had a super long nap this afternoon so I had a long stretch of time to hammer out a different project I’ve been dreading and although it isn’t done…  I have a plan now so I actually know how to finish it.  You’d think I would enjoy a puzzle but not this one.   I don’t like  puzzles I feel unqualified to solve.  Or puzzles that are boring when done. 

Finally at 5:30pm I stopped.  Tessie was awake and ready to be entertained so I obliged.   Steve and I did our “tomorrow is garbage day” eat all the leftovers routine for dinner and I decided to bake.   To be honest I would have preferred a drink, but they don’t recommend nursing when you’re a little buzzed.  So I bake.  I had 3 soft apples on the countertop so I found this recipe for apple muffins and went for it.  


I put my little baking buddy in her crazy chair and she watched me and listened very intently to me talking through the recipe.   She seemed intrigued at the amount of butter, as was I,  and simply shocked that the recipe called for a “pinch of cinnamon”.   Even a baby knows that the more cinnamon the better when baking apple muffins.   And throw some allspice in there, while you’re at it. 

tessie 9-5-12

They turned out just fine.   They aren’t the greatest ever but they aren’t bad.  I did use Emily’s mini muffin pan again and 13 of them are gone… so they are just fine.  

Now for confession time.   I am ready for fall.  I am ready for 70 degree days and cool nights, and wearing long sleeves.  I am ready for a cold rainy day.  I am ready for weather that is so crummy that there is no choice but to stay inside.   All summer long I feel like I am missing out on fun outdoor things.  Between having an infant and working every second this summer, I didn’t have enough time to play.   It seems that everyone I know was playing nonstop and I was home.  Working.  And feeding the baby.  Sometimes, while working.  At night I got to see my husband, and talk about work.  Unless he was gone.  Working.   See?

Fall and winter have no expectations.   We get to hibernate.  We get to cook warm cozy comfort food and drink tea and wear a scarf every day if we want.   TV comes back so the sadly addicted TV people like me get to watch it as much as we want.  If there was anything worth watching right now Steve and I would be doing just that.  Instead he is obsessively shredding all of my old checks that he just found in the desk.   Most annoying sound ever.  This wouldn’t be happening if it was fall.   I’m ready. 

Oh, and one more thing.  I’ve started my Birthday / Christmas gift list.   I might be too engrossed in TV or planning Tessie’s first Christmas  to come up with a good list when I need it so I decided to just do it.   I guess if I can’t plan for how my day is ever going to go I can plan for fun things I want people to buy me.  Totally logical.


Saturday, September 1, 2012

Chomp Chomp..


I love infant toys.   So many of them seem to be a mix of fun fabrics to feel,  hard plastic to chew on and then some noise.   My Tessie is drooling non stop and is clearly starting to teethe.  Yet…. she would rather stuff the fabric of these toys in her mouth, or find the tag of the toy to chew on.  Every time I give her the hard plastic chewy part to chew on instead she ignores it.  She just doesn’t care. 

Then a few days ago I was in the office and turned around to see this:

chomp mooseI was really so proud of her for getting the teether part of the toy and getting it into her mouth!   Clearly she was pretty happy too..  because now she is constantly chewing.on things.   She uses her free hand to (feel the plush) and to make darn sure that the toy stays in her mouth.chomp moose feet chomp elephant chomp elephant 2

My favorite was when she got hold of the elephant trunk.  Isn’t she clever?   chomp elephant trunk

Of course we’ve also got this pink teether that goes in the freezer.   We’ve dragged it out a few times and she has only been interested in chewing on it for a little while…. and even then only when we were holding on to it.  (Tooo cold, I suspect).   But now that she is on board with chewing on toys she was happy to hang on to it and chew it and lick it on her own.    I asked her what changed….  this is what she had to say:

Got it?


Third week in August


Although I have decided to blog, I’m not that good at it.  Also, titles are not my strong suit.   I need the outlet of writing and I am a compulsive over-sharer so that is a good start.   I also have an almost frantic need to remember everything in this incredible first year of Tessie’s life so that seems good.  But in the midst of my list making mode my lists sometimes turn to her, and then a week later I find a quick list about what she has done but I haven’t actually written about her.  It’s probably worth noting that I don’t spell check and I rarely re-read anything.  You maybe already noticed. 

Today I will catch up.tessie in bumbo 8-26-12

Last week it seems like Tess-a-roonie turned the corner and she can now hold her head up strong.   I don’t feel like I need to support her every second and so she generally seems like a solid little person now.   I even started leaving her car seat in the car and just grabbing her.   Grab and Go Baby is much easier….  especially when running quick errands or going to Chipotle.   Plus,  Grab and Go Baby gets tons of compliments from strangers telling her how beautiful she is.   She loves that.  I even dragged out the Bumbo seat to see is she could do it.   What do you think?

She is very interested in feeling everything.   At naptime she likes to feel the satin / fleece little blanket if its close, or her monkey.   She has always fallen asleep with her hands in her hair so there is still that, too.  When I change her she feels the wall, and she’s even started rubbing her hands on my arm or my face or my chest.   It’s just like she is checking everything out to see how it feels. 

Grandma Kathtessie and mom in office aug 24y and Auntie Pat came over for a few days to visit and Tessie always has the biggest smiles for them.   We love that they come over so often because Tessie definitely knows who they are, and they are very comfortable with her schedule so if we need to run an errand or hide in the office for hours, we can do that.   

Speaking of the office, here is a self portrait of the two of us from last week.   I have learned there is definitely a category of work I can do one handed.  I have also learned that when something this cute is on your lap you cannot be expected to be productive.    I would say “Don’t tell Steve”… but I suspect he already knows.


To wrap up… here are a few more cute pics from the week….  Tessie chillin’ on the floor with Girard the Giraffe,  enjoying a fall feeling day with a hoodie and a grey cotton headband, and of course a shot of the cutest chubbiest thighs ever.   Everybody loves chubby baby thighs, right?

 tessie chilling with girard 8-25-12Tessie 8-23 warm up  chubby thighs 8-27-12

There you have it.   Hugs!