Saturday, January 28, 2006

the good, the bad and the ugly...

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Kozy

This morning I decided to check on my babywearing peeps over at TBW and found out that we will indeed be participating in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Kozy. I'm sooooooo excited about this, I actually signed up back in August and wasn't sure if we'd be picked or not. So you know, the Sisterhood is an effort by one mamma to spread the love around the world to other families via one of her carriers. As the plan was falling into place, one of the other mammas who signed up suggested that everyone participating make a small donation ($5) to be used towards a new Kozy carrier which will be donated to a women's shelter. We all embraced the idea, and a plan was formed. We should be receiving it in about a month! I'll post some pics then.

Even though I hate the term "babywearing" (brings awful visions of the Fur Industrial Complex to mind), I do love carrying my babe in one of the two carriers we have at the moment. He loves it too. If we were able to afford it at all, I'd own a LOT more carriers -- it's like jewelry or shoes, you want to accessorize! Forget diaper bags or strollers, I want a few more MeiTais, a couple of pouches, and I really wouldn't mind an Onbuhimo and a nice wrap. I love the freedom & closeness of having my baby next to me without killing my arms in the process and, intellectually, I love the history & tradition behind babywearing. Now you know.

got milk?

ok, so I have no idea how to try to get El Niño to drink milk. It'd be nice to wean him a *little* off the breast at this point. He'll drink water from his sippy cup and his new Dora straw cup (he loves this thing, almost as much as he loves Dora) but if I put milk in either of them, forget it. It's like you're trying to poison him. I've tried mixing up the milk with some yoghurt, and I've tried vanilla soymilk but nada, no-go. I'd really like some ideas on what else I can try, please?

pinching a loaf???

... or dropping the kids off at the pool? Well, until recently, I'd never heard these quaint American expressions. Mind you, I've spoken English for the last 31 years of my life and have lived on the West Coast for the last 12, yet I was still confused as to what people were referring to when I first heard them. AH-hemmmm, now I know (if you still don't after reading this entry, email me & I'll hook you up). El Niño dropped the kids off at the [bath]tub yesterday. We'd skipped any attempt at potty-training on Thursday because congestive misery had taken hold of our little family unit. But I was back at it yesterday and, after an unproductive 10 minutes on the toilet, I put him in the tub for a nice relaxing shower with me. By the time my clothes were off, I turned around to find... well, you can guess what I found. Fun times!

He later went pee-pee in the potty, when his Daddy asked him to. *sigh*


So, since I'm now familiar with these lovely American expressions, I'd like to share a few of my own PuertoRican ones that are part of our gringo household.

debating the immortality of the crab = engaging in a futile argument, one which can never end or change anyone's mind (sounds like most of the conversations we have with our teenage son)

scare (or spook) the cold = to warm something just enough so that it's not cold from the fridge

with patience and saliva... = this is one of the strangest ones I encountered back home in PR, I found an actual dictionary of folk words and expressions compiled by an Anthropology student and the entire saying is "with patience and saliva, an elephant [penetrated] an ant". Ok, so it's all about persistence folks!

Thursday, January 26, 2006

please allow me to introduce myself

So... I guess it's time to introduce myself: I'm Mo, the Gringo. Honey and I are new to blogging (I'm a lot newer than her) and as she's stated, this will be a nice place to vent, to write about things that are important to us or just stuff we think is fun. As you will quickly learn, the majority of the posts will be coming from her. I'm still trying to warm to this whole thing. I'm not against it, however, I am just a little shy and not as deep as she thinks I am (inside joke). I'll probably fill you in on this later.

Honey is home with Mr. Boy during the day while I eke out a modest living. I wish she got paid for what she does, she does all the real work. I sit at a desk doing this-n-that (nothing exciting) while she deals with runny noses, potty training, feedings... well, you know what I mean. After she takes care of these things all day, I get to come home to an enthusiastic "Da-ddyyyyyy!" from a running, arms outstretched, ready-for-a-hug little boy. I get to enjoy the rewards of all her hard work.

I try and give her relax-time on the weekends. I can't go too far or be gone for a long period of time with the baby due to the fact that I don't have what he MUST HAVE every hour or so. Mr Boy is still nursing 'round-the-clock, which I think is great but it doesn't lend well for me taking off for the afternoon and leaving her to read a book or take a long bath. I do what I can and I know she appreciates it.
I've learned so much from Honey, and am glad we'll have this place where others will get to benefit from all of her insights as well as be able to feel the warmth from her beautiful heart.

So, some general info about me. I enjoy watching sports, all sports (but I don't let them interfere with other things). I'll watch whatever I can, when I can but I don't let them rule my life. If it comes down to watching a football game or going to the park with Honey and Mr. Boy, I'll go to the park any time. Same goes for hanging out with the teenage son living with us. I really like to ski but due to our current circumstances and financial constraints, I haven't been in a few years. I'm not the greatest skier but I do ok and have been skiing since I was 13. I read about two books a month (on MAX and during lunch, I'm way too tired at night to try and read, I'd just pass out, so I just veg in front of the TV for an hour or so before I fall asleep). I'm always looking for good titles, so recommendations are welcome. I'll read just about anything that is well-written, I don't limit myself to specific genres.

Well, that should do it for now. If you haven't been put to sleep or aren't considering suicide after reading this, I hope you'll be back -- if not for me, at least for my lovely and talented wife.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006


Sr. Niño and I are under the weather today. Blah. Lots of sniffles, teething misery and round-the-clock breastfeeding. This, after waking me up at 5:40am.

Yesterday, toootally different day. The sun was out, birds were chirping and Yummy-Niño peed in the potty TWICE. We went to the zoo, all the animals were out enjoying the balmy weather & and he chatted with everyone. *sigh*

Now he's doing a raindance in our bedroom, apparently it's too early for him to go to bed...

Monday, January 23, 2006

I hate Mondays (whine)

hatehatehatehatehate Mondays!

On Saturdays and Sundays, I look over when I wake up and there he is, my husband. The man whose very existence gives me faith in humanity. My rock. Mo's side of the bed was empty this morning when I woke up. Blah. He has to work and be away from us all day, all week... and to top it off, he's taking a class this semester on MONDAY NIGHTS. Double blah!

I read
a post by Dooce recently where she talks about how good it's been for their family to have her husband home after he quit his job. She wrote it in response to some reader criticism to the changes she'd made to her popular blog. I loved that post. Especially the last three sentences. If I could do what she's doing, I'd have my husband home with me EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK. Make no mistake about it.

Then, I was watching the Today show this morning (usually the right amount of perky to distract me) and they discussed Newsweek's
cover story about how the educational system is failing boys. No shit, REALLY?!?!? I've been living with this for the last nine years, it's about time someone raised the issue at the national level. I've got a lot to say on this so, it'll be in another post. And I'm hoping Mo will add his own two cents' to this discussion (no pressure, mi amor, ok?)

Saturday, January 21, 2006

brushing teeth

(actual conversation with my 14-year-old son, aka Dr. Jekyll)

Dr. Jekyll: wow! He really likes brushing his teeth...
(points to his 18-month-old brother, gumming a finger toothbrush)

me: yeah, I wish you did too...

Dr. Jekyll: well, I'd like brushing my teeth too if somebody else did it for me!

me: uh, hello? Are you kidding me, how old are you?

It always goes downhill once I ask him that question...

Friday, January 20, 2006

the Sultan of Tye-Dye

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making sofrito

sofrito is a Spanish word for a blend of savory ingredients, herbs & spices that are sauteed in order to flavor stews, soups, etc. Each cook tends to have their own custom blend/proportion for the ingredients used... and my way of making sofrito is very non-traditional for a Puerto Rican. Mo just calls it "the obligatory green stuff" and scarfs up whatever I serve him.

This marriage partnership of ours is a lot like sofrito... why can't I be a normal person and think of non-food related metaphors? I'm Puerto Rican, he's Irish-American, his ex-wife is Iranian and our four kids are a mixed bunch. More on that later.

I have a LOT to learn about blogging. Mo's been after me for over a year to do this and, procrastinator that I am, it took
the Cookies moving to Blogspot to compel me to start writing. It's been forever since I've written for pure pleasure (or sanity), and as it is, I'm currently typing with one hand while holding our 18-month-old sleeping child in my lap. My butt's numb... but naps are rare around here, so WOO-HOO! I hope to find my voice again, and that Mo will figure out he has one to share. I'm inspired and intimidated by the people I regularly read: Greg at daddytypes, Dutch & Wood at sweet juniper, the aforementioned Cookie, the foodie-mamma I'm likely to copy while blogging, and several others I'll link to later. El Niño is now awake & I've gotta go!