Tuesday, April 29, 2008

a waitress named flo

so, the longer i spend in this quaint little upstate new york town the more i am charmed by its country i-feel-like-i'm-in-idaho-esque-ness feel. my parents are from idaho so anytime i get a touch of that country idaho feel it makes me a little sentimental and mooshy. i kind of love it. so, i'm kind of falling in love with queensbury. the rainy day yesterday made it feel more like graham, washington, where the hubby is from. still pretty but too gloomy for me. the sun is pretending to shine today so that's a little better.

so far we've eaten at two non-chain local restaurants and both not only had the most delicious food (i mean anywhere that serves sweet potato french fries has got to be goooood, right?) but they were built like log cabins and had bear footprints painted on the floor leading to the bathrooms. apparently that's how you find a bathroom in these here parts...just follow the bear prints. we had lunch at The Silo today, yummy restaurant complete with a waitress named Flo and a paper placemat that taught me that in early colonial america the word barn meant "a place for barley" and the "Shaker Round Barn" was built in the shape of a circle to "keep the devil from hiding in the corners." Ah, so that's how i keep the devil out. the restaurant also had a gift shop, a "genuine" country store and a fudge factory. eating on the company dime has already sugared us out so we skipped the fudge part and went straight for the handmade wooden toys to spoil our only child. i'm sure it was more fun for mom and dad to pick out toys then it was for the only child who just mostly wanted to take a nap at that point. the babe is doing great though, a total trooper, snoozed in the car the whole drive here and has been happy as a clam (what does this saying mean, by the way? are clams known to be particularly happy creatures?) chillin in the country.

i had to laugh at myself the first night of our country time adventure when i thought to myself "you know you've been married for 5+ years when the best thing about staying in a hotel is having your own bed!" we switched hotels today though so we'd have a bigger room which means only one bed, but it's a king so i'm sure we'll manage. the pack and play fits in the closet area of the bathroom making it possible for me to hang out with the light on while the bug sleeps in the dark. i got a little gloomy in the hotel yesterday keeping it dark to help the bug sleep. i'm excited to use the pool and exercise room at this hotel too. why is it more fun to run on a treadmill at a hotel? who knows? these are the complex questions that keep me up at night.

anywho, so far queensbury is turning out to be lots of fun. i'm hoping the sun will make more of an appearance so i can get some good shots of barns and cattle and rusty things and such. we'll be touristy-ing it up this weekend in albany seeing all the sights and sounds of the big city (not to be confused with the big apple, mind you. i can't believe NYC and queensbury are even in the same state. so different!) stay posted for more country bumpkin fun. (sadly the rodeo is not in town until July, such a loss...)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

i waste so much time...

on this computer! we are headed out of town tomorrow for two weeks and i need to get me done some packin! we are headed to queensbury, new york (wherever that is!) darek has to go for work and myself and the babe are tagging along, ah the joys of being an at-home mom! this is something i always looked forward too before i was home fulltime. i've been checking online and it appears there's about nothing in the world to do in queensbury but that's cool with me, better then being here missing darek.

we went to the arnold arboretum this morning, so beautiful. then browsed a sweet yard sale and had thai food on centre street. i love this time of year, just being out and about is the best. i am falling more and more in love with jamaica plain everyday. i thought i'd be so sad to be out of cambridge after we moved from there and although cambridge is awesome (and i'm still over there a lot) jamaica plain has a lot to offer. i'll be sure to start posting more pictures of it charm. i feel lucky to live here, even if it's only for a little bit longer.


oh wait, in all my enthusiasm about jamaica plain i did indeed neglect to mention that there was a shooting a few blocks from us on patriot's day. yes, a shooting that resulted in death and lots of extra police out patrolling to try to keep the rest of safe. and yesterday some kind of drama occurred right here on my street that had every police car from here to timbuktu driving up and down the street. perhaps i spoke too soon! luckily our landlords will be taking good care of our place while we are out of town because they are still getting it ready to sale. hopefully any prospective buyers won't be scared away by a little gun and police action...haha...

Friday, April 25, 2008

drive your own bandwagon

as you may know i'm a therapist by profession which, contrary to popular belief, does not mean i have perfect mental health. (i mean just because you're a dentist doesn't mean you'll never have a cavity, right?) however, i do love studying human behavior and figuring out issues and seeking insight and all that jazz and sometimes i like to get on a soapbox and tell you all how to live your life. (joking...) so today i'm telling you to stop comparing yourself to other people and just love being yourself! i seem to learn this lesson over and over in life and i'm always happier when i'm living as amberli, not as a wannabe whoever else.

the scene: sophomore year in high school. a new friend had just moved into my ward, a friend who was, i daresay, a major nerd. i can say that because 1) it’s true, and 2) nerds are cool. one day i was out of class and i came upon my friend, surrounded and being teased by three senior guys, also friends of mine. in desperation my nerdy friend picked up a tree branch in case he needed to defend himself. i knew these guys weren’t violent but i was shocked to see that they were being so mean. i stepped between my nerdy friend and the three seniors with said shock upon my face and questioned, “you guys are seriously making fun of him?” immediately they realized how ridiculous they were being and stopped. over the years my nerdy friend became totally accepted for being a nerd and was actually popular for his nerdiness. after graduation his mother came to mine in tears explaining that they had moved to laguna hills three years previous to escape some very severe and violent bullying my friend had been subjected to on a daily basis at his former school. she credited my standing up for and befriending her son for the fact that he had been so well accepted at my school, etc. i’m not tooting my own horn here because i had no idea what i was doing at the time and lots of people befriended him, not just me. anyway, the point is that people will pretty much jump on whatever bandwagon happens to be passing by (unless their secure enough to do otherwise) – so have the courage to drive the bandwagon you believe in, you’ll lend courage to others to do the same.

so that's it folks. today's free therapy is that you have permission to be yourself because you're great!

nothing like a good dose of cheese to go with your blog post! but that's cool, i can own my nerdiness!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

five months old
how zoolander is this picture?

i CAN NOT believe the little man is five months old. i admit i spent most of the day with an i'm-so-sad-my-baby-is-growing-up hole in my heart. i feel like he's about to start kindergarten, or about start dating, or about ask a girl to marry him! time is flying by too fast. on the other hand it is really fun to be at this point. he just gets funnier and funnier everyday. we celebrated his five month birthday by buying him lots of fun summer clothes. i was loving it.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

after bathtime


this kid is obsessed with his feet

***

so the sleep training success has been no fluke - it has indeed been a MIRACLE! wow! it makes such a huge difference. parenting is a whole different ball game when sleep is involved!


the weather has been beautiful and it appears that spring is here to stay. do you know what that means (besides oh so much happy sunshine that will hopefully toast up my pasty appendages)??? it means homelessness fast approaches for the mccoy family (our landlords are selling our place). we are yet undecided as to whether or not we will remain in new england or move on to our next adventure. we're looking into various possibilities, some more adventurous than others. it's funny to see the "you're crazy!" look in people's eyes who ask what our plans are to which i reply with a clueless "who knows?" and a shrug. i'm actually sitting here asking myself, "is it time to panic?" we have through august to plan our next life step and make it happen. we can swing it, right? we tend to be a little insane when taking these big steps - perhaps you will recall that we cruised into boston three years ago with nothing but what our rodeo could pull in a mini u-haul, no place to live, not knowing a soul within five states...and it all worked out just fine. we'll see how this story goes...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

dear strangers,
just an fyi

blue shirt + blue blanket = little boy

i'm not sure why everyone thinks atticus is a girl

Sunday, April 20, 2008

is this a fluke? or a MIRACLE???
knock on wood...


i am oh so happy to announce that we are having MAJOR success with the cry it out sleep training method! atticus has responded so well to it and pretty much puts himself to sleep everytime now. i can't believe it. it's saving our poor aching backs. no more rocking, rocking rocking...it came at the perfect time too because i have a little flu bug this weekend and have been mostly out of commission for a few days. hopefully the worst is past. so thanks to everyone for the CIO advice. i wasn't sure i would be able to follow through with it but it wasn't too bad afterall and i think atticus is grateful for it too since he's responded so well to it. hooray for sleeping!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

treasures

for those of you who are lucky enough to know Likely you've undoubtedly benefited not only from her cheerful personality and her AMAZING cooking (i mean, her cookies? can you say Bite Me??? please!) but perhaps you were also a lucky recipient of one of her dejunking treasures. as she was recently dejunking she decided to gift her treasures that were hard to part with to people that the treasures reminded her of. isn't that a great idea? so when we hung out in NYC she brought me (and atticus) this:

how awesome is that? seriously, what a treasure! i love worn, vintagey books and this one couldn't have been cooler for us! THANK YOU Likely - i know this was hard to part with but we will cherish this treasure and think of your generosity and thoughtfulness each time we see it!

so perhaps this is a good time for a small confession: yes, atticus finch is a superstar and yes, i love To Kill a Mockingbird, and yes, when strangers ask me if i named my child after the noble lawyer i smile and nod with an innocent look on my face...but mostly because it's hard for me to admit that although i've always liked the name since reading Mockingbird in the ninth grade...it was actually the punk rock clothing brand that really sealed the deal. i know...embarrassing...luckily the clothing brand is indeed based on the book (read about it here) so it's pretty true.

so, speaking of treasures - look what atticus got in the mail today!!! a HUGE THANK YOU to the Vegas McCoys for all the awesome gifts! atticus totally scored and i must say he's in LOVE with the cuddly puppy. he's been snuggling it all day! and how fun is the BATHketball toys, he's going to love that. hopefully he'll get to play with it before his dad steals it! and the best of all??? how COOL are the Etnies? i'm in love! i made him wear them for the picture although they're huge. i can't wait until he's cruising around in these puppies! plus the hurley shirt? so great! all of it was so great.

thank you, thank you, thank you!

stylin

and while we're checking out close ups of the legs check these chubby little stubs. he's finally chubbin up! kind of...

we had such a good day. atticus slept better last night and the sun was shining this morning - all the makings of a good day! we tried to attend the JP moms group but alas 'twas cancelled! my plans to attend that group get thwarted at each of my efforts. someday we'll make it. in the meantime we'll just keep hanging out and making googley eyes at each other all day!


and thank you to all for the "balance" advice on the previous post. it was all very helpful and today was much better. it helps so much when the babe sleeps better at night. today i totally used his awake time for busy body time and his sleep time for me time and it worked. hooray! plus i went on an awesome run through the arboretum tonight - nothing better. i hope you all had a great day as well. ta ta!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

this kid keeps me laughing


and i need the laughs! we here at the mccoy household are T-I-R-E-D! this little dude's cold is all cleared up which is great but it has left some sleepless nights in its wake. we're hoping to fully recover this week. we've had success getting his daytime naps down and bedtime happening more smoothly but it's the staying asleep all night business that is not occurring. darek is at present rocking the bug to sleep (2am) and as soon as he's down, we're down. it always seems that if i hang out for too long after atticus goes to bed he wakes up to eat just as i'm turning my light off to go to sleep. not tonight! i've been running on empty for too long and i'm feeling it. last night i threw myself a sweet little pity party while darek was being spiritually fed and uplifted at the adult session of stake conference and i was at home feeling run into the ground. it's time to start taking better care of myself for crying out loud. i love taking care of the little guy and often forget to take care of myself. darek came home last night and tried numerous times to get me to mellow out and stop running around all manic and crazy, cleaning and such. but i find that as soon as atticus goes to bed i either shut down entirely and feel so unproductive or i go into overload mode and can't slow down. i gotta find me some balance, sheesh! do any of you smarty pants have suggestions? nonetheless, i am a happy mom and love taking care of this guy. his smiles and laughs (and hopefully improving sleeping habits) keep me going! sweet dreams people, may your long peaceful night go sans hungry babe interruptions!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

"enjoy it while it lasts"
~the weatherman

we new englanders bared our pasty appendages today in celebration of the 70+ degree weather. hello sunshine, please be my BFF!

i took this picture on tuesday when we were "celebrating" the 45 degree weather in the common, i was so excited to see a tree budding. but this was nothing compared to today!


the bug and i "played" in the backyard today which basically translates to poor atticus squinting into the sun, unable to smile for the camera. darek worked half day and came home to take a stroll through JP with us and enjoy the sun and delicious wraps at The Purple Cactus. to top off the perfect day, darek put atticus down for his afternoon nap so mom could take a nap and then put the babe down at bedtime so i could go running ~ thanks derelique. you're the best, as always!


happily we are totally having success getting atticus onto a sleep schedule. he's still nursing at night which is OK with me because he's gotten real speedy and he goes right back to sleep. i admit that although i've got some serious luggage under my eyes i cherish that time with him. i've still not braved the "cry it out" method but for now that's fine too because the nap schedule helps him be sleepy enough at the right times that we only have to rock him for a bit to get him down. hopefully it lasts! he's digging rice cereal too so i've been checking out THIS website in preparation for some delicious meals for the babe over the next couple months. it appears that perhaps our trip to the ER last week may be related to a possible milk protein allergy so for now no dairy for me and hopefully it will help the babe feel all better.


speaking of tasty meals, the friends i recently hung out with in NYC have started a recipe exchange blog - feel free to check it out if you'd like some new recipes. it is aptly named "what goes with cocoroos?" in honor of our staple meal in college, the blessed cocoroos! i cringe to think of how malnourished i must have been back then. pan of brownies anyone?

Monday, April 07, 2008

hanging out with dad


we tried to take a walk today but quickly discovered that it was too cold to be out for more then a few minutes. we spent those few minutes complaining about the cold and fantasizing about living somewhere warm. i must say i'm going a little stir crazy in our apartment - summertime please.

atticus is always good entertainment though which makes it easier to be home all day. he's so cheerful and funny even though he's still getting over his cold. i'm such a happy mom!

making googly eyes at dad





watching dad play his PSP


and my favorite, when he got tired to watching the PSP he just leaned forward and stuck his head between darek's arms to look at his books that were on the floor. he just sat there forever looking around. i couldn't stop laughing at him. such a little character.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

all worn out

we've had a really rough week: atticus' first cold. so sad. the little man has had a wicked bad cough which has led to a raspy, hoarse and often absent voice. he kind of sounds like one of those debarked dogs whose had his voicebox removed. he's so cute though because between coughing attacks and hating having his nose sucked out he still gets all happy and social and giggly but all his squeals come out silent and whispery. we're grateful it's only been a cold as we did end up in the ER for several hours earlier this week running tests as a result of some suspicious daiper contents. luckily all that checked out and there was nothing worse the cold. so the babe has slept more during the day in response to the cold, giving us a happy preview to what it will be like when he's taking long regular naps during the day. however we're pretty worn out since he's up more at night with coughing attacks and stuffy nose and such. so sad.

obviously we've been in the house a lot this week so i busted out the camera a few times to pass the time.




i dig these little 80's-esque stripey socks.



we de-germed the house yesterday with bathes and cleaning and doing lots of laundry! we gotta get this bug out of our house!


atticus has always liked his changing table. he likes to chat with us while we're taking care of business. he has been extra loving his table since we've hung fun toys to enjoy!


so the good news is that despite the rough week (and very limited study time for me) i passed my social work licensing exam! what a blessing. and THANK YOU, THANK YOU to my awesome husband for doing extra daddy-duty so I could study and for taking me on a celebratory shopping trip yesterday! you're so great!

Friday, April 04, 2008

I H-E-A-R-T NY


last weekend i headed down to NYC to have a little college roommate reunion! it was such a blast! thanks to mehrsa for inviting us and hosting the best weekend ever (and to jared for dealing with a house full of wild ladies reliving their glory days!) i hadn't seen most of these ladies since we were all younguns at BYU. now we're all married mamas! i felt real lucky to reconnect with all these peeps and get caught up on all that's happened in the last decade. We came from all over: me (Boston), Jo (Florida), Shauna (Colorado), Likely (Maryland), Megan (Philedelphia), Melissa (Utah), Jenny (Minnesota), Mehrsa (NYC, the "Huxtable" brownstone), Trisha (Arizona), and Amy (Texas).



there was much chatting all weekend. more like yell-talking! i was the first, but not the last, to lose her voice. that sexy hoarse voice that i always had in college returned as soon i was found myself once again amongst all the yell talkers.

we walked miles and miles all around the big apple checking out the sights and sounds of the the city. mehrsa was an awesome tour guide.

rockefeller center


you never know what kind of weirdos you're going to find in new york city!


the temple, right in the middle of the city



i was so happy that jojo brought her littest dude too so i wouldn't be the only mom with her babe. shauna and megan did it right and just brought the babes in their bellies!

the babes and the bellies

broadway


some of the ladies brought pictures from the college days, mostly our freshman year since almost all of us lived in the same dorm. the pictures were hilarious! we kept laughing over how we thought we were so sassy and hot back then but we all agreed that we are all much more sassy and hot now! how ghetto were the 90's???

we had dinner the first night at the Tavern on the Green in Central Park. Atticus was so sleepy and fell asleep on my lap (after a meltdown and a feeding in a bathroom stall wherein i sat asking myself "why did i think this [bringing the babe to the city] was going to work?" jojo ended up in there with me asking herself and same thing but luckily the boys eventually adjusted to our adventures and in the end it was a success and so worth it!). trisha graciously cut my pork tenderloin for me so i could eat without awaking the babe. thanks mom!



we made such a scene everywhere we went, such tourists! we took most of our pictures while we were out shopping on friday when it was gloomy and grey. saturday was sunny and gorgeous but we were in full blown shopping mode at that point and couldn't be bothered with the taking of frivolous photos, not when there where bags and jewels and clothes and shoes for purchase!

times square



yes, this is the kind of scene to which i am referring...likely thinking she's a pigeon



more times square



me and the babe...still in times square



just one of the many public nursing displays to keep the boys happy.
atticus was fed in:
rockefeller center (pictured below)
the back of a taxi cab (please don't look in your rearview mirror, sir)
the shuttle to the airport
the bathroom of Tavern on the Green (in response to the aforementioned meltdown)
oilily's dressing room (ah, cozy comfy pillowed bench)
the try-on-shoes-bench at Z. David (yep right out in the open)
standing in the bathroom at church (because the church was lacking in the mother's lounge! excuse me? we are commanded to multiply and replenish the earth and yet you provide no mother's lounge for the feeding of the babe?)
the bathroom of Max Brenner
anthropologie's dressing room
the couch in the try-on-glasses section of Macy's where Melissa pretended to try on glasses so we could feed the babes
that yummy sandwhich shop in soho
the airplane of course
other benches
other dressing rooms
other random places...sometimes with the hooter hider, often without! you get the picture! you just gotta do what you gotta do!


atticus was such a trooper. he often preferred to be in my arms rather then in the stroller which meant that all my cute friends who were on a break from pushing their kids around in strollers had to push around my empty stroller while i carried the babe! thanks everyone! it was crazy having atticus with me but i'm so glad we went. it was so worth it and overall i think he did really well!

a kiss for my little love


ah, the shopping...



who would dare leave new york without the acquisition of bags, bags and more bags? mines the green stripey "dolce & gabana" in the front (thanks to melissa from whose buyer's remorse i benefited when she decided she should have bought only two bags instead of three...i'll take the puppy off your hands for you!)


we met up with kamilah and miggy at Max Brenner (delicious! no i mean DE-LI-SHUS!!!) sadly no photo of miggy was taken (oops!) but we were real happy to see her nonetheless! and atticus was real happy to lay on the table and wiggle until our oh so YUMMY chocolate meals came! they have a "normal menu" with normal food, but who wants to look at that when they have a whole other menu of chocolate delight?!

yes, this is the chocolate delight to which i refer: a chocolate and hazelnut creme and banana filled crepe with ice cream, fruit and a beaker of melted chocolate on the side. H-E-A-V-E-N! good call kamilah on meeting up at Max Brenner!


the boys (future BYU roommates perhaps?)


the little man peeking out from his stroller. i'm so grateful he got to come along and i'm grateful to all my friends who were so helpful! thanks ladies!



it was so fun to see all of you. i can't wait for our next reunion...boston? florida? a cruise? so many options! love you all!