Stealing a Still Moment

This overly-confident piglet captured busy boy Baby A's attention.

Tonight I sat on the couch with my son watching television. Nestled in the arm-shoulder-torso junction he sat quietly as we watched Olivia. (She and her brother were dancing with their grandmother, which is apapro since it is reflective of this trip.)

His small head rested on me and I could feel him breathing. For once, we were just still together. The busy boy that Baby A is normally had been quieted. The clingy baby boy that has surfaced in the last week was just near. And while we sat and watched this cartoon pig on her adventures I was transformed to the days when A. was an infant and the rhythm of his breathing  and his peaceful energy would lull me to sleep.

This moment was the highlight of my day (and possibly my week). I hope that we have more moments like this one.

Olivia is copyrighted by Ian Falconer.

Stealing a Still Moment

Goodbye Familiar Faces

When 2010 rolls around, two men in my life will be gone—pursuing leisurely, fulfilling lives I hope.  The first is Peter Gammons, who announced today that he will be leaving ESPN after major league baseball’s winter meetings. I enjoy watching ESPN and Gammons made the MLB interesting for me. His reporting was top-notch and his commentary was enlightening. I will miss him in the spring.

The second is Charlie Gibson of ABC News. I stopped watching national newscasts at the beginning of the year, but I have slowly crept back. I don’t do well living in a bubble. Gibson has always been my favorite anchor to watch and the fact that he promised his wife that he will retire and he is now keeping it is sweet. I will miss him delivering good and bad news to me when I decide to watch.

Watching television news will be a whole new experience in 2010. Peter and Charlie, you’ll be missed.

Goodbye Familiar Faces

Sitcoms Make Life Look Easy (Or, There’s Hope No Matter How Unrealistic)

M and I are watching “Two and a Half.” Besides Alan, Charlie’s life looks easy: a house in Malibu, rarely works and now is marrying a woman who owns three apartment buildings. Specifically, she owns buildings in Brentwood and Marina Del Rey—pretty well to do areas of Los Angeles. She’s young and seems smart but in the real estate climate that this city has had for the last 10 years, this doesn’t seem likely.

This isn’t the only show where the characters live in homes that in real life they wouldn’t. For instance, would the twenty-somethings of Friends live in the enormous apartments on Manhattan? Would Old Christine have a house on Los Angeles’ west side, send her son to a private school and barely run a gym?

Thank goodness, they do. These unreal depictions make want to have real lives that reflect them. Because no matter how bad the situation, everything ends all right and everyone ends up where they want to be by the time their series finale ends (Seinfeld may be the exception). And there’s something hopeful about the chronic happy ending.

Sitcoms Make Life Look Easy (Or, There’s Hope No Matter How Unrealistic)

The Number of the Day is 40

Rosita and ElmoThis week Sesame Street started it’s new season. Thank God. I’m not sure how many times I would be able to sit through reruns of the Help-O-Bots or How Many Hats Can You Wear on Your Head Day (even though Baby A and I play this game at least once a week).

The show is in its 40th year and as The Week pointed out it hasn’t gone without controversy. When it first aired it was banned in Mississippi because of its multi-racial cast that included Maria and Gordon (the man doesn’t looked like he has aged a bit.), both of whom are still teaching America’s youth. Including my 16-month son who’s internal clock knows when the show is on. He hands me the remote each morning and afternoon hoping that I will find Elmo and his friends.

I do, happily. In the short time that we have been watching, I’ve watched A. laugh at jokes that he didn’t yet understand just a week ago; mimick actions—whether dancing, singing or drumming—that the characters are doing; and find comfort in the characters that he probably sees are his friends. As for me, it gives me something to build our day around. For instance, when Elmo is thinking about frogs, A and I jump around the apartment like them. Or, if the letter of the day is “M” I point out all the words beginning with the letter. I don’t have a degree in childhood early education, but this seems to work for us. It also affords me the time to set dressed, cook, and possibly send an email or make a phone call.

Happy 40th anniversary, Sesame Street. Without you, most mothers would spend their days in pajamas.

The Number of the Day is 40

My Favorite Time of Year

Last night was the first official game of the college football season. I love September.

For some reason, I have always been partial to the NCAA over the pros. Maybe it’s because I like to see the teams develop over the season and over the year. Or that I cheer for schools I would have liked to go to: UCLA (granted, this is my hometown team and I worked there for a few years), Northwestern, and Boston College. [We also follow Notre Dame, Florida and Illinois for various other reasons.] Or, maybe it’s because each game is a surprise: you don’t know who will win and it’s always interesting to see the amount of heart and emotion that these young players bring to the game. It’s this last reason that I am a fan. That is what makes a sport—whether it’s football, tennis or golf—compelling. So this fall, I’ll watch the boys do battle on the field and enjoy every minute of it.

My Favorite Time of Year

It’s Peanut Butter Pajama Time

[Title Note: These are the words to  the song I sing to Baby A as we go to change into is PJs. It’s a take on a Family Guy skit.]

There are days when I love spending the entire day in my pajamas. A post at Confessions of a Mean Mommy made me realize that now that Baby A is around I may enjoy those days more. Denise Schipani talks about having extra pajama time with her sons during summer mornings. In my world, any time is pajama time. If we aren’t going somewhere, Baby A and I may never change out of our night clothes. (He’s usually happier on these days because he hates getting dressed and undressed.)

But before him, my pajama days were spent in bed reading and watching crappy television. Granted, there are times when I miss this alone time, but with Baby A in the picture pj day is different. Better.

With him I play games all day, watch PBS Kids (Sid the Science Kid, Curious George and Sesame Street are some of our favorites) and nap. It’s wonderful when the whole day is a pajama party. I think we need to have another one soon.

It’s Peanut Butter Pajama Time

Use, Recycle and Repeat

When we moved to Los Angeles, we moved into a building that doesn’t offer recycling. No big deal, we thought. Boy were we wrong.

M. and I have been rabid recyclers for six years especially because we have had the luxury of living in areas that have pretty good programs. So when we tried to throw out paper, a plastic bottle, a glass baby food jar or even an aluminum cat food can, each one of us felt guilty.

Luckily there was an easy solution. Each day I channel Christine Campbell in the television show, “The New Adventures of Old Christine.” In particular, the episode where the mean mommies tease her that her car is full of garbage and she keep trying to explain that it’s stuff to take to the recycling center. Well, instead of my car (even though that does sometimes occur) I fill a canvas tote bag with our recycables from the previous day and walk to my local Whole Foods where they have bins. Sometimes I think I must look like a newly homeless person carrying my full satchel of “trash” into Westwood, but I don’t care. At least I’m doing a small part for the environment. Now, if I could only get the reuse part down.

Use, Recycle and Repeat