Saturday, October 30, 2010

THE STORY! And it's SOOO good. Totally worth the wait.

Before our story can commence, I must send a resounding "thank you" to all the mothers and fathers and sitters and godmothers (etc., etc.) who hit me up here or on facebook to offer advice and kind words.  Yes, my baby girl is still fussy and still wants to be held all the time, but we continue to have tiny victories day by day.  For example, I am typing this with BOTH HANDS and looking at the baby monitor while she sleeps IN HER CRIB, where she has been for an HOUR.  Holy crapballs.  Last night she slept for three consecutive hours in her crib.  What did I do?  Stared at the video monitor the entire time.  Because I am a fool.

Moving on.

Here it is, folks!  The story I have been dying to tell for ages and ages and needed both energy and two typing hands to tell.  Oh dear ... now I realize I've built it up way too much.  No matter.  It still involves ENEMIES and DANGER and HIGH DRAMA.  Prepare yourselves.

Okay, so it was 12:30 AM, and I was doing what I do -- sitting up in bed, rocking the baboo and staring at the clock with bleary eyes -- when I heard a huge CRASH right outside our window.  That was weird, because even though we live in one of those old city houses that is close to the street and close to our neighbors' houses so we usually hear EV-ER-Y-THING (yes, everything), it had just gotten cold enough to close the windows, so the noise was 95% gone.  The CRASH was so loud that I jumped and "eeep!"ed.  The crash was followed by the squealing tires of a car peeling away from in front of our house, and I turned around just in time to see the headlights of a car fleeing.

I headed downstairs to see what happened, figuring we had left our garbage can out and it was now road rash.  I went to the front window, and saw ... Jeremy's car ... on the street, and not in the driveway where it should be.  He had left it on the street so when I got home from work he could pull it in after me.  Obviously he had been too tired or forgotten.  

But, I seem to remember the car being parked in front of OUR house, not our neighbor to the south's house.  Hmmm, very curious.  It when then that I saw the front of his car, which was smashed to smithereens.  

PANIC.  Someone had smashed my husband's beloved Camaro convertible.  The car that represented all that was young and carefree about him.  The car he bought the DAY WE MET.  The car he loves so much he defends it up and down when I point out its bazillion flaws and beg him to buy a sensible car.  

All I could think was I am going to have to be the one to tell him his car has been violated.  I wanted the car out of our lives, but not like this, NOT LIKE THIS (standing in the middle of the street, directly under a street light, arms in the sky, head thrown back, screaming up at the moon).  

A few minutes later, the cops were in front of our house.  Our neighbor to the north had heard the noise and ran outside to find some neighbors across the street on their porch smoking.  They had seen the whole thing, and she called the cops to report it.  

GET THIS:  The witness-neighbors said they saw a green four-door sedan come flying down the street, then slam on its brakes right in front of our house, crank it into reverse, smash the car backwards 20 feet, throw it back into drive, and drive off.

Ummm ... I'm no scientist, but that doesn't sound like an accident.  The cops actually asked Jeremy if he had any enemies, and when he came back in to tell me that, I laughed and laughed and laughed, because I could never imagine Jeremy with an enemy.  He is easily the world's most likable person.  And then it hit me.  This hit was meant for ME.  

Who is the only person in our house who is likely to have enemies?  Oh, I don't know, maybe the sarcastic, bitchy, blog-writing, bad-grade-giving, grouch?  Yeah.

Jeremy was quick to point out that it was HIS car.  Well duh, but I had JUST convinced him that we should trade his car in towards a reliable and boring crossover.  You know, something we can FIT THE CARSEAT IN.  We were like two weeks away from that GLORIOUS moment.  So, number one -- my enemy knew I was about to get something wonderful in my life and they snatched it away.  

Number two -- I had JUST gotten the use of my car back, after it had died for the ten-millionth time and taken a week to get fixed.  I had only driven it to work and was looking forward to the next day when I could, oh, I don't know, actually LEAVE THE HOUSE DURING THE DAY for the first time in over a week.  But no, my enemy knew of this and wanted me to be trapped in my house with a crying baby who is easily soothed by riding in a car.  

Number three -- remember my suspicions that someone cut my brakes this summer?  (Okay, I just spent ten minutes looking for that post so I could link back to it, but I couldn't find it, so either I am overtired or I never wrote about it, but trust me, it totally happened.)  Well, obviously they started there, and their evil plan was foiled when my friend was nice enough to drive me to work and Bob at The Auto Surgeon fixed my car in one day.  It all fits.  

Okay, so I have a confirmed enemy.  One who is willing to injure things loved by ... well, not me, but my husband.  NOW WHAT??

I guess all I can do is fall back on my old friend anxiety and practice CONSTANT VIGILANCE.  And if you drive a green four-door sedan?  Sorry.  I'll be attacking first and asking questions later.  And if my enemy is a student who thinks if I am trapped at home then I won't be able to show up and grade their papers?  Oh, I'll always find a way.  ALWAYS.  

Please send binoculars and anti-anxiety medication.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Story Postponed; Baby Stuff Continued

My apologies to everyone who does not care about pacifiers and baby-wearing.  My double-apologies to all who were desperately awaiting the story about my verified enemy (or enemIES -- who knows).  BUT, I have gotten a lot of great feedback and questions from people about not only the pacifier situation (OMG, I just imagined "The Situation" with a pacifier in his mouth.  Ha!) but also my "unable-to-put-my-child-down-for-more-than-five-minutes" problem.

So, in response to all the suggestions and questions, I have some facts to share:

1.  I have tried ALL available types of pacifiers, I only offered each type to her once each, and I only offered them to her because she recently started frantically sucking her hands and fingers in order to soothe herself, but while sucking she would still cry and hyperventilate, like she was trying desperately to soothe herself and could not manage it.

2.  When I gave her the pacifier she liked, she INSTANTLY started sucking like gangbusters, a smile came over her face, and she actually RELAXED, which she doesn't do for too many hours a day.

3.  So, she obviously loves the thing, but her little tongue pushes the thing out, and as soon as she pushes it out, she screams and cries because it is gone.

4.  Yes, I also have a hard time breastfeeding, because it always feels like she is pushing it out of her mouth, AND it hurts like the devil is biting my nips the ENTIRE time she eats, every time she eats (but she has a deep enough latch, she is not just shallow).  

5.  As for the baby-wearing, I am ALL for it and planned on doing it from the get-go.  I tried the sling first, and she was like no way, Jose, so I got a Baby Bjorn.  She LOVES the Bjorn ... IF I am in constant motion.  Like, when I walk the dog or go to the store, she is in hog heaven and passes out, but if I have to (heaven forbid) stop moving because I have to wait in line for a prescription or go in the house to make dinner, she spazzes.  

6.  For the most part, she FUH-reaks when I put her down for more than 5 minutes, and I don't mean like slightly upset, I mean apocalypse stuff.  

7.  She is only 2 1/2 months old, so I am nowhere near letting her cry it out.  I'm just not ready.  Plus, everything I've read says it is not a good idea before 4 months.  I still want to be her source of comfort, even if that means constant back pain, no sleep, and slight brain pain.  I mean, I know a lot of people who had high-needs babies, and they started to turn a corner around 3 or 4 months, so until I get to that point, I feel like I should just wait it out for a while longer.

So, have at it, moms!  :D  I love your advice, stories, and "been-there"s.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Okay, moms -- I need help!  Josephine started sucking on her hands and finger a LOT, and I wanted to replace that with a pacifier.  Thankfully, she recently realized that sucking on a pacifier is soothing and lets her actually go three hours between feedings (HALLELUJAH!), but ... well, let's just say she doesn't fully understand the concept of "sucking."  This has also made breast and bottle feeding EXCRUCIATING.  She pushes out with her tongue when sucking, so when I put the pacifier in her mouth, she pushes it out on the first suck.  Since she is obviously not old enough to hold the pacifier in her mouth or to pick it up and put it back in when it falls out, the only way for her to use the pacifier is for me to hold it in her mouth for her, and let me tell you, while it is great that she is calm instead of crying, it does not make my life much easier in terms of actually being able to DO anything, since I have no free hands.

Here's the question:  WHAT THE EFF DO I DO?  I have tried both the "orthodontic" shaped pacifiers and the "hospital soothers."  She likes the orthodontic shape much better, but she cannot keep either in her mouth.  I was told you cannot put duct tape on your child's face to keep the pacifier in place.  Heh.  So what do I do?  Help, please!!  

To make up for such a lame-balls post, I have a teaser for what is coming up when I have two free hands to type with:  Evidence that I have at least ONE enemy who is out to get me.  GUH!!

Friday, October 22, 2010

A Small Offering

I want to blog SUPER-DUPER bad right now, but I can't, for undisclosed reasons (hint: it has to do with a too-cute two-month-old child who I cannot bear to put down because she "doesn't like it."  Still waiting for a shower today.  Heh.).

And I have a post all written in my head, and I want to type it up, but I can't, plus I need to take a picture of something and write all over it in Paint, but my camera battery died yesterday WHILE THE BABY WAS BEING HELD BY HER GRANDPARENTS (!) because I am a total failure of an unprepared mother, and I am staring, panicked, at the light on the charger, hoping it finishes charging before we take Josephine to the apple orchard/pumpkin patch tonight, because if I don't get picture of THAT, I am pretty sure they will take my child away, and I CAN'T RISK IT!  

So, anyway, that was all totally unnecessary and took me like an hour to type with my one free hand, but what I really wanted to say was, "Real blog post later.  For now -- bizarre and funny video I saw on The Soup" (tangent: I asked Joel McHale to be Josephine's godfather.  Still waiting to hear back.):

Please, do enjoy!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Wanted: New Spider-Disposer-Type Person

If you also live in an old house (especially if it has not been cared for for over 100 years -- reminder: we rent, so we are not the neglectful owners in question), you know the extent of the spider problem.  I swear, we could start an arachnid museum up in here.

I am pretty terrified of spiders (if you don't understand why, please click HERE), but ever since the baby has arrived, I have been hyper-vigilant about those little blood suckers.  And let me tell you, I COULD kill all those little bitch spiders every time I spot one (or, rather, get Jeremy to kill them), but I am KIND-HEARTED, so I just scream and scream and hyperventilate and point at the spider and scream until Jeremy scoops it up, unharmed, and removes it from our residence.  

So, that is how g-d nice I am.

Until recently, when I found ...
EGG SACS!!!!  In my basement!  Right by the washer and dryer!  Where I wash my BABY'S CLOTHES!!  Not one.  Not two.  THREE egg sacs, all full of thousands -- nay, MILLIONS -- of little baby spiders, just waiting to erupt in a fireworks display of evil.  (See below):
Of course, I immediately alerted my husband.

Veronica:  [dragging Jeremy to basement]  Have you SEEN this?

Jeremy:  The window?

Veronica:  No, what is between the window and the storm window.

Jeremy:  Hmm, not seeing anything that would necessitate me being dragged to the basement.

Veronica:  Well, that explains why our house is rampant with killer spiders!  SOMEONE is not taking his job very seriously.  Spiders sacs, Jeremy!

Jeremy:  Oh.

Veronica:  OH?  That's all you have to say??  Do you realize those things are going to burst forth with thousands of SPIDERS that will BITE your BABY?!?!

Jeremy:  Well, I'm pretty sure there are thousands of eggs, but that's just because not all of them will survive.

Veronica:  Don't you try to use your knowledge of science against me.  Besides, if even ONE survives, it will crawl up in the dark of night and bite your baby's FACE!  Are you prepared to wake up in the morning and see a massive spider bite on your sweet girl's face, all because you wouldn't get rid of those damn egg sacs?  Are you?  ARE you?

Jeremy:  But Veronica ... think about Charlotte's Web.  Are YOU prepared to tell your daughter that you ordered the death of Charlotte's BABIES?

Veronica:  *death stare*  You son of a bitch ...

Yeah, the egg sacs remain.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Most Interesting Facts You Will Read Today

Now that I've drawn you in with that tantalizing title, I suppose it's only fair to tell you the truth: I am just going to tell you what's going on in my not-so-fascinating and baby-centered life. But guess what? That is all you're getting, so you will read it, and you will LIKE it.

Fact #1: I know you are DYING for an update on my boobs, so I don't want to drag it out and make you wait any longer. Let me tell you how I honestly feel about breastfeeding. From the bottom of my heart? It is the hardest, most infuriating thing I have ever been through in my entire life. Remember how I figured out it was my breasts being "overly enthusiastic" about making milk that was destroying my daughter's innards?  

Well, ever since then I have been trying to force my boobs to make the correct amount of milk. For the first three days of following La Leche League's directions for slowing down my milk, NOTHING was changing. There was still too much milk, a lot of screaming and crying, and LOTS of crummy tummy. Then, all of a sudden, I went from one feeding with way too much milk to the next feeding with NO MILK, like, AT ALL. There was a lot more screaming and crying than usual (from both parties involved). So I tried to make a bottle, but I had no idea if I should give her the milk I had pumped and stored, because that was probably all foremilk too, right?  I tried to give her formula, but for some reason, every single one of our awesome "breast-like" bottles flipped out and the milk was POURING out of of the nipples like we were shoving a garden hose in her mouth, so she was choking and gagging and screaming and clawing at my face, and I was sobbing and shouting "WHAT DO WE DO???!?!?!?!" at Jeremy.

Needless to say, I then had to try to convince my breasts to make MORE milk. And ever since then, it has been a precarious balance trying to keep my supply at *just* the right amount. I mean, do normal people have to deal with this? Every single day I have too much or too little milk at one feeding and then have to scramble to fix it. All this is really draining me, and I feel like such a complete FAILURE. I feel like the one thing my body is supposed to be able to do to provide for my daughter is malfunctioning, and all the bonding and happiness I am supposed to be enjoying with my baby has been stolen from me. Everyone told me to stick it out for the first three weeks and then it will get better and easier. Well, it has been nine weeks, and I am still struggling in a bad way. Every single day I just want to give up, and then I feel like a horrible mother. GUH!! Boobs, why you gotta play me like this??

Fact #2: Last night when I was driving home from teaching my night class, I was feeling like a really bad mom. I felt like I hadn't done my best in mothering Josephine that day, specifically because when I was brushing her hair after her bath, she cried and made the saddest face I have ever seen, like she was just giving up because she was so destroyed by what I was doing to her. And I FINISHED BRUSHING HER HAIR, even though she was making a sad face. Plus, I was trying to enter my students' grades online and was holding her (Yeah, this is how I work now. You would think I could just ... oh, I don't know, PUT HER DOWN. But you'd be wrong. Oh, you'd be SO wrong):

... and she started fussing a little. Instead of stopping what I was doing and soothing her, I just bounced her in my arm a little so I could spend 30 seconds to finish what I was doing first. And as I was driving home at 10 PM, all I could imagine was her sad little face, and my boobs were leaking like MAD because I don't have an office anymore so I don't have a place to pump for the six hours I am gone on Tuesday nights, and the more I cried and imagined her face, the more I leaked, and the more I leaked, the more I cried. Then ... flashing lights. Yup, I was speeding, and the cop was not swayed by my sobbing about how I needed to get home to my baby. So I got a speeding ticket that essentially STOLE MONEY from my daughter because I have to pay the county money that I could be spending on her. It was kind of a bad night.

Fact #3: Okay, this is turning out to be the world's saddest post, so here is an ADORABLE fact: Josephine is going to be a MONKEY for Halloween. A MONKEY! Can you believe it? Can you think of anything cuter than my baby girl is this costume my mom just ordered for her?
Plush Monkey Newborn/Infant Costume
I cannot.

Fact #4: My daughter would probably get a lot more restful and sustained sleep if I could just STOP KISSING HER. I mean, she's just snuggled up to me, looking all cute and sweet, and I just have to lean over and kiss her. How can I not? And 90% of the time, that wakes her up, and she looks up at me with her sleepy little eyes as if to say, "Seriously, mom? Can you let me sleep for more than five minutes without waking me up with a stinkin' kiss?" Oh my gosh, I just kissed her little forehead like five times while I typed this paragraph. 

So, what have we learned here? I am going kind of crazy, but my daughter is AMAZING and BEAUTIFUL. 

"Yeah.  I'm number one!"

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Still Waiting.

Parinita over at Improper Conduct turned me on to this, and it is the best thing I have seen in a long, long time.  I laughed, I cried, I laughed, I cried.  I cried.  I imagined a kinder, happier, more equitable planet.  

If you watched ... thank you.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Factoids: Fart Edition

Due to the overwhelming positive response to my claim that I am, quite possibly, the new Internet fart expert (three comments is an overwhelming positive response, right?  Right?), I thought I should take my "PhD farts" more seriously and regale you with all that is flatulence.  Perhaps my husband's penchant for "bathroom humor" has desensitized me, because I never really talked about farts too much until that one post.  Man, this is a big day.  Breaking down walls and whatnot.  

Plus, I wrote another "Factoids" post 58 bazillion years ago thinking I could make it a regular feature, and look at that.  Here we are.  Full circle.  Two editions = regular feature.  Look it up.

Put on your learning caps, folks.

The word "fart" comes from the Old English word "feortan," and is likely echoic in origin, meaning the word was chosen to sound like the object named.

The major components of a fart are Nitrogen, Hydrogen, Carbon Dioxide, Oxygen, and (sometimes) Methane.

There are two kinds of farters: Producers and Non-producers.  Only about 2/3 of people produce Methane in their gas.  If both parents are producers, their offspring has a 95% chance of being a producer.

Contrary to popular belief in the elementary-school crowd, a fart is not just a burp that comes out the other end.  A burp not only emerges from the stomach, but has a different chemical composition than a fart.  Farts have less atmospheric gas content and more bacterial gas content than burps.

 Farts have been clocked at a speed of 10 feet per second. 

Termite farts (which contain massive amounts of methane) are believed to be major contributors to global warming.

Farting up in space would propel you forward.

Cats and dogs (and people on the Atkins diet) produce extra-rank farts because of their protein-rich diets.  Protein contains a lot of sulfur, which fuels the pungent fires.

A person produces about half a liter of farts a day. 

Ben Franklin wrote an essay called "Fart Proudly" to mock academic societies in Europe.

Founding Father.  Author.  Inventor.  Fart Aficionado.

And finally, last but not least ...

Available for purchase: Farty Pants underwear.  Designed to mask the smell of flatulence (and, clearly, to discourage intimacy)

I'm too sexy for my underwear with the activated carbon filter covering my butthole

(Get it?  The END?  See images above.)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

You Had Me at "Rescue Dogs"

OK Go, the boys who stole my heart with their infamous treadmill video (Go ahead -- say you don't love it too.  I'll call you a liar.) discovered a way to make me love them even more.  Their new video?  OMG.  I "sqeee"ed so much when I heard about it that I thought I wouldn't have any left for when I watched it.  I was wrong.  I had plenty of squeals left in me.

OK Go's new video features ... (wait for it) ... RESCUE DOGS DOING TRICKS!!!!  Get ready for heart-melting amazingness:

They did the video in one take (no cuts or edits!) to highlight the professionalism and awesomeness of the dogs.  They are also using the video to raise money for the ASPCA (*SWOON*).  If you head over to their website, you can buy their video, with all proceeds helping rescue dogs who haven't found their homes yet.

And, okay, maybe my rescue dog can't do tricks like that, but she can sit (about 85% of the times you ask her) ...


AND she helps soothe the baby by giving Josephine her favorite dog toy when she cries.

This actually happened.  For reals.

And my rescue cat?  Well ... he steals the dog's bed and adds a certain level of sass to the household.  Just the way I like it.

If you ever want to bring an animal into your life, consider ADOPTION.  You won't regret it!  In the meantime, watch the video and swoon away.

Monday, October 4, 2010

I would never let a monkey make a monkey out of me. It's like you don't even KNOW me.

I like to think I am SLIGHTLY hip.  I mean, I have a Twitter account, people. Never you mind that I only log on once a month, send a flurry of twits (you call them tweets, I call them twits, Kathy Griffin calls them twats -- to each her own), forget Twitter exists for about a month, then start the cycle all over again.

So when I started blogging, I really wanted to do all the cool things other bloggers did.  However, after taking three solid hours to figure out how to get a Twitter widget on my blog AND have it go to my account when you click on it ... well, it was then that I realized I will likely not be on the cutting edge of technology.  Whatevs.

But I DID finally figure out how all those other clever bloggers were able to see what keyword searches led people to their blogs.  It took me months. Unfortunately, that is not an exaggeration.  I got all excited and proud of myself, read the list, laughed, and then (you guessed it) forgot about it for a few months.

However, today while I was wondering which direction this next post should take after I pissed off a Christian Scientist (he/she could not tell by the rest of my blog that I make "the jokes"), I remembered Google Analytics.  I am coming up in response to some pretty exciting search terms.  Get ready to be jealous:

"annoying orange" (←which is weird, because I write exclusively about non-annoying blue)

"chonkie movie (the toy baby that kill)"  (←this one took me a while to figure out)

"awesome possum lemon blossom" (←this one is pretty fantastic, actually)

"chunky monkey boobs" (←thanks for noticing my fine rack)

"veronica addicted to pooping (←it's like they have a window into my soul)

"chunky monkeys sat on my face" (←oh dear ... this is taking a bad turn)

"chunky munky nude grils" (←yep, this is bad -- I never condone grilling in the nude.  That is DANGEROUS, folks!)

"monkey attack dog trying to attack on the small baby" (ummm ... what?)

And my favorite: "are you gonna let a monkey make a monkey out of you?" (NEVER)

All this is great, but what I was completely unaware of is the fact that I have become somewhat of an expert on farting because of that one ... experience.  Here are the top fart searches that led people to my blog:

fart at night
fart attack 
fart awake
farting at night
farting uterus
farts throughout night
my husband farts in his sleep
how much of your farting is done at night?
is it ok to feel like farting at night?
its two nights that im farting always ... am i pregnant?
why my son farts in his bed
vitamin D makes me fart
farting monkeys farting bad romance
phd farts

So what have we learned here?  Clearly, I need re-focus my efforts and become the preeminent fart scholar on the Internet.  Send me your fart questions, people.  I am happy to oblige.  And I might just have "PhD farts." You'll never know.
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