blog_banner 20

Monday, May 28, 2007

Blondies vs. brownies.

For Memorial Day, it was just the three of us, so I made hot dogs, pasta salad and baked beans (One of Lauren's favorite foods right now). Even though it was a rather hot day, I fired up the oven and baked a batch of blondies for dessert.

Curious as to what I was up to, Mark came into the kitchen and pointed to pan cooling on the stove. "What's that?" he inquired.

I replied, "Blondies. They're the opposite of brownies."

Mark then got this satisfied look on his face and said, "I thought we were the blondies," meaning him and Lauren.

"Oh, I get it," I said, rolling my eyes, "That means I'm the brownie."

Not quite finished, Mark then said, "Daisy's a blondie too. You're surrounded by us."

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Happy Memorial Day Weekend.

Following the tradition that Memorial Day weekend kicks off the summer, the Ross Family Pool opened yesterday. Lauren got to break in her Finding Nemo swimsuit and Spiderman swimpants (Thanks to Daddy for not paying attention at Wal-mart. For some reason, Lauren is already well aware of who Spiderman is and therefore rather likes wearing them.).

More photos can be seen here.

After swimming, we went to visit Baby Noah. Noah's hobbies include sleeping and making funny faces.

Friday, May 25, 2007

A trip to see the doctor.

Yesterday we took Lauren to the pediatrician for her two year check-up. We had a feeling that this was not going to go over well, so we did our best to prepare for the worst. I scheduled the appointment for late in the day, making sure it would not interfere with her nap. I took off from work so she could relax at home all day. We even went to the library at the next town over (Hampton) to pick up a special book about going to the doctor, you know, to get her used to the idea.

We arrived to a fairly deserted office and waited the customary half-hour before someone came to get us. We were the last appointment of the day, so all of the assistants had that "Can we go home now?" demenor. As usual, we were escorted into the examining room where we started to undress Lauren. Being the astute little girl that she is, Lauren figured out where this was heading and started freaking out, yelling, "PANTS ON! PANTS ON!" over and over again.

After the assistant asked us the same questions that she asks every appointment, we headed back out to the hall so that she could measure and weigh Lauren. Now that she's walking, you would think that they could do this with her standing up, but no, Mark had to lay her down on the scale where she screamed and flailed like she was auditioning for a starring role in "The Exorcist: Meet the Terrible Twos". The assistant wrote down some numbers as we headed back into the examining room to wait for the doctor.

Mark got Lauren to calm down by reading her a book. Being the "in touch" mother that I am, I started to gently explain to Lauren that a very nice man named Dr. Butler was going to be coming in to just ask her a few questions and...well, I didn't quite get to finish describing the fine doctor's positive points because Lauren started screaming "NO! NO! PANTS ON! PANTS ON!" again.

A few minutes later, Dr. Butler made his dramatic entrance, which was greeted by the hysterical screams of our daughter. He suggested that I take her outside and walk her around a bit until she calmed down. Not one to question a professional opinion, I carried Lauren out the door where she proceeded to frantically pace up and down the hallway wearing nothing but a diaper, sobbing "NO! NO! PANTS ON! PANTS ON!" Thinking I could distract her, I took Lauren over to the reception desk, but, knowing that she had the upper hand, she soundly rejected my peace offering of a Blue's Clues sticker. One of the assistants noticed my plight, and instead offered a pretzel rod. Ordinarily, Lauren would have been all over that salty, crunchy snack, but since this was no ordinary tantrum, she refused it. I politely thanked the assistant and took the pretzel anyway, in case the demons possessing her little body got hungry later.

Luckily, Lauren started asking for her doll Lita, so that gave us an excuse to go back into the examining room to get her. Thinking that my child was doomed to be a social outcast, I asked Dr. Butler if her extreme reaction was normal. He said, yes, some kids are fine at this age, but others, the ones that are more aware of what's going on around them and remember what's going to happen, tend to freak out. That's a relief - she may be a social outcast, but at least she's smart.

The demons must have been getting tired, because Lauren stopped squirming long enough for the doctor to listen to her heart and check her pelvis. As he left the room, Lauren waved to him and said "Bye, bye! See you later!"

And that was that.

As for the pretzel rod, Lauren, once again wearing her pants, sat happily on the steps leading up to the doctor's office and enjoyed every last bit.

After that ordeal, Mark and I were starving, so we headed to Tomato Pie in North Park. We had the best item on the menu - Dipositano Pizza.

Knowing that we owed it to her for causing her such emotional trauma, I suggested that we stop and let Lauren play at one of the playgrounds. Needless to say, demons must have an aversion to playgrounds, because they were nowhere to be seen during our stay.

After we left, I insisted that we stop at McDonald's for a Minty Mud Bath. Every McDonald's in town in pushing this milkshake as part of their Shrek 3 promotion. It's quite tasty, in a minty, chocolately sort of way, but unfortunately, I didn't get to enjoy it all. A mother's guilt will always override the cravings of the stomach, so when she asked I, of course, let Lauren have mine.

364 days to go until her next check-up!

Monday, May 21, 2007

We have a nephew / cousin!

Noah (middle name TBD) Ross was born today at approximately 5:45 p.m. He made his big debut at 9 lb 3 oz. Everyone is doing fine.

In other news, Mark found out that if you mistype our blog address you can find out all about the end of the world. Cool! Actually, if you put anything at the front of the, the same page comes up. I wouldn't want anyone to get the impression that we're ushering in Armageddon all by ourselves.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Come to my window.

This photo about sums up the weekend. Just hanging out watching the world go by.

As you probably noticed, I finally changed the blog banner and layout colors. Not wild about it, but since I'll probably change it again in a month or so, I can live with it for now. The banner is a photo of a small part of a play mat that we bought for Lauren a few months ago at Ikea. There is also a stadium, beach (complete with whale), hot dog stand, circus and erupting volcano. It's located in our den, and she loves to sit on it and play. It makes me happy just looking at it.

The irises in our pond started blooming this week. It's hard to tell from this perspective, but this is actually only one of a huge collection. We're pretty sure that this is where the fish like to hide, hibernate, and lay eggs.

Also newsworthy (since it happens so infrequently), Mark and I watched The Departed last night (FYI, it arrived from Netflix on 3/14). Wow - certainly not a movie to gather the family around to watch. Mark didn't particularly like it (Probably because he doesn't particularly like Jack Nicholson or Leonardo DeCaprio), and I thought that it was just okay. The whole "mob takes boy under it's wing" thing has been done better before (By Scorsese himself!). It seemed to be lacking Robert De Niro. Anyway, now we have to pick a new movie to rent - something preferably under 2 hours so that we won't have to wait for perfect circumstances to watch it.

I only have to work three days this week, and then I'm off until next Wednesday. To say that I'm looking forward to my mini vacation would be an understatement!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Weekend happenings.

Yesterday was Federated's day at PNC Park. We had a pretty decent time, but it's funny how trying to do something fun can be so stressful. First, we sat in traffic and then had to scramble for a parking space, which resulted in us arriving to the game a little late. We hadn't eaten dinner, so the first order of business was food. We bought some reasonably priced ($6.00) and tasty gyros. They were also a bit messy, and I ended up dripping dressing on my new cropped pants. Lauren was fairly well behaved, until she started wildly waving Buzz at the guy sitting in front of us. After Mark removed her from the situation, my friend Melissa and I were subjected to not one but two men who rather prominently adjusted themselves right in front of us. We left at the beginning of the 8th inning, since there was no point in watching the Pirates further humiliate themselves.

As for Mother's Day, Mark took me to have breakfast at Ikea. I love breakfast at Ikea - can you believe that you get all this for $1.99? They also have a 99 cent version that comes sans french toast sticks.

I swear that someday soon I will be back to updating more regularly. At the moment, work is really wringing me dry, so during the weeknights I'm pretty worthless. Hopefully, the situation will improve over the next week or two.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Party of two.

On Saturday we celebrated Lauren's 2nd birthday. Much fun was had by all.

Her favorite gift? No doubt this Buzz Lightyear raincoat. I predict she will be wearing it when she goes off to college.

More photos can be seen here.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007


Today was an ordinary day, with the exception that our little girl turned two.

The only real birthday business that occurred was the opening of presents from Mommy and Daddy. Lauren received Snoopy book, a Toy Story book, a Jessie from Toy Story doll, a set of interactive cartridges for her Learning Leap doll, Finding Nemo DVD, and a golf set.

Daisy kept trying to get in on the action. According to the Animal Rescue League (where we adopted Daisy) she was born sometime in the spring. Maybe she was trying to tell us that today was her birthday too. Could be...

The second year of Lauren's life came with many new and unexpected challenges, so it'll be interesting to see what year three brings.