Weekend Musings: Potluck, OMSI & More

We started Saturday off with a morning run to get the blood pumping and some physical activity in before we really started our day. Lindsay and I have both been making an effort to get back to our more active selves and are working to encourage each other to stay active. So, we woke up and started our morning with a very light breakfast before getting our running gear on and strapping Edith into the stroller and hitting the roads.

Despite the light rain, we had great runs. Lindsay pushed the stroller as she did her speed work and I did a slightly hilly (and surprisingly fast!) 3 miler through a local park and some local condo developments. We decided to meet at Whole Foods and really timed it well as we met up on the sidewalk right in front of Whole Foods and finished our run together before getting a little snack to carry us through the morning.

Fun at lunch!

We then headed home, showered and got ready to head out to the last Portland Winter Farmers Market at Shemanski Park. We picked up some great mushrooms, fruit and veggies. After that we were off to a vegan brunch potluck hosted by a twitter/blogging friend of Lindsay’s. We had a great time talking with the other adults and enjoyed all of the food. I particularly enjoyed watching Edith interact with the other two girls as it’s not something I get to see very often since I’m at work during the play groups and meetups Lindsay and Edith attend. It was nice to socialize and meet other people who share the same interests as us as well.

After a couple of hours, all of the babies were starting to wind down and Edith was clearly ready for a nap. We drove home with the intentions of settling in and getting a couple of things done around the house. However, Edith was deep in sleep when we were almost home, so we decided to extend the drive a bit and explore the area. We followed a back road into Portland that we had been told about. It was a great drive out past some beautiful farm land and through some windy, hilly roads that cut through Forest Park in Portland. I definitely took a mental note on all of trail heads along the road in hopes of finally getting to do some “urban hiking”.

After our drive brought us in to Portland, we realized we were getting hungry and decided to try Pok Pok Noi. The Pok Pok restaurants are a group of restaurants in Portland and NYC run by Andy Ricker with the main Pok Pok being named the #8 most important restaurant in America by Bon Appetit. Pok Pok has been on my list of Portland restaurants to eat at since well before we moved out here. And I will say, that it certainly delivered. We had a delicious soup, mushroom salad and a Rhubarb Blush.

Daddy's at the engine, Edith rings the bell

Daddy’s at the engine, Edith rings the bell

Sunday was a much more relaxed day for us. We took a trip (my first) to the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry where Edith played in the babies’ play area, spending time crawling in the mini ball pit and being mesmerized by the fishes in the aquarium. After Edith was done playing, it was my turn to play. Museums are one of my favourite things and I had a great time looking at the various exhibits and thinking about how fun it will be to take Edith as she gets older. OMSI seems to do a great job of having a wide array of exhibits that will appeal to kids of all ages and still keep parents entertained. I particularly enjoyed the exhibits on natural energy and can’t wait to check out the Myth Busters exhibit!

Lindsay LOVES fake food in fridges.  Seriously.

Lindsay LOVES fake food in fridges. Seriously.

After playtime at OMSI we headed back downtown to get lunch and a sampler of beer to share at Deschutes. We then got our groceries for the week including our first trip to the Asian supermarket in Beaverton. It was fun to wander around the store and see all of the different things we could only get on trips to Boston or New York when we lived in Burlington.

We ended Sunday night with a big bowl of sweet potato mac and cheeze and the Oscar’s. Unfortunately becoming parents hasn’t allowed us a trip to see any of the nominated films but we still enjoyed watching the awards show.

Unfortunately, we only took camera phone shots this weekend and our new android phones take horrible photos compared to out iPhone’s so we didn’t get many good photos.

 

Currently Reading: Peek-a-boo, Devils and Stephen King

What Edith’s Reading:

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  • Peek-a-Boo, Baby! Animals: We have been reading this for months now but Edith went from loving the peek-a-boo and animals to falling in love with the babies in the book.  She has developed a little bit of a crush on the baby boy on the penguin page and babbles and squeals when she sees him.
  • Sesame Street Who am I?: This book was actually mine as a child and was one of my favorites.  We love to read it with Edith and she loves Cookie Monster and Grover (I think it’s the bright blue).
  • Good Night Vermont: We received this book as a shower gift and alternate reading it to Edith at bed time.  I love the book as well and now that we don’t live in Vermont it is a little reminder of our old home.
  • Touch and Feel Baby Animals: We have had this book for a long time and I used to take Edith’s hand and try to get it open and have her touch them but I was pretty unsuccessful.  Nowadays she reaches out coos and babbles and strokes the animals; her favorite is the bunny.
  • Guess How Much I Love You: Neil reads this to Edith most nights and I just love to listen to him read it to her.  It’s a really sweet story of a baby bunny and his dad and there friendly competition to see loves each other more.
  • Good Night Oregon: Obviously we had to buy this when we moved out here.  Now we have added it to our bedtime rotation and although I like it I think I prefer Good Night VT.

What Lindsay’s Reading:

  • The Devil in the White City: This is a really great book and I have been slowly making my way through it over the past month.  I am hoping to finish it in the next week or so, now that I have time to read. The book follows two intertwining stories one about the Chicago World’s Fair and the other about H.H. Holmes, America’s first serial killer.  Like I said so far a really great read.
  • The Doula Book: This book I am reading for my future career path! Yes I am hoping to become a doula in the next 2-3 years.
  • Baby Led Weaning: Since we have started solids I am reading all kinds of baby food books and theories.  It is such an interesting and exciting time and also a little nerve racking as well.

What Neil is Reading:

  • 11/22/63: “11/22/63 is a novel by Stephen King about a time traveler who attempts to prevent the assassination of John F. Kennedy which occurred on November 22, 1963.” Wikipedia  Neil is currently enjoying the book and will let you know what he thinks next month!

When I’m A Parent….

I will never put my child in a cage…

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and then we bought a cage.

Okay so it’s not really a cage it is a play yard that we lovingly call “The Cage” and it has become totally necessary. Over the past few weeks Edith has become more mobile ie. crawling and climbing. Oh, and did I mention putting everything in her mouth (still) and because of this I couldn’t get anything done.

We needed a safe place to put Edith for short periods of time so we tried putting her in the pack n’ play and it works fine for about 10 minutes once per day and that just wasn’t cutting it so we decided to pull out the big guns and completely let go of the “no gated area” notion we had idealized and bought a large play area.

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Once I finally Neil finally figured out how to put it together we placed it in the dining room/living room and put down Edith’s playmat and added toys and books and dropped gently placed her in. Instantly she was in love especially with the fact she could pull herself up and stand and babble at me while I do work or dishes or fold laundry.

Just another lesson that while we have grand ideas before baby arrives it’s a whole other ball game when they actually do arrive.

What are your “When I’m A Parent” moments?

P.S This is the “cage” we bought (affiliate link)

Edith: Seven Months

SuperEdie

Weight: no idea.

Height: no idea.

Likes: Absolutely loves being outside, walking, riding in the stroller, water, bathtime, crawling, climbing.

Dislikes: Being left on the floor to play for longer than 10-20 minutes at a time. Riding in the car at night. Getting her diaper changed when she is overtired.

Sleeping: We had some major struggles with night sleep for awhile and I think it was due to all of the changes (moving and time change) and moving back into our room and then back into her own room again.  Over the last few weeks things have calmed down and we even started a new bedtime routine which seems to be working for us.  Edith goes down between 7-8p and usually nurses between 8:30-9p and sometimes she will nurse between 10-11p and then we have a longer stretch until around 2:30a and then she nurses again around 4:30a and is up for the day between 5:30-7a. Our biggest struggle right now are naps.  Some days E will nap in her crib, other days only on me and other days not at all.

Eating: Edith nurses a billion times per day, a lot of which is for comfort  but I’ll do a whole post on that later.  She has also started eating solids and is loving it. I am going to do a post about solids sometime this month detailing what we are doing and how it is all going.EdieEatsBroccoli5

Playing: Right now we are on the search for a good play group and I have plans to do a few meet ups in the next month.  During month seven we had a meet up with Kim and Alma at OMSI and it was so nice to finally meet them both and get out with Edith. 

Wearing: E is still wearing mostly 3-6 month clothes and she still has a few 0-3 month items that fit her and we are slowly starting to bring out 6-12 month items.

Here are some of my favorite photos from Month Seven:

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Free Friday At The Children’s Museum

The first Friday of every month The Portland Children’s Museum has a free evening for families to enjoy what the museum has to offer. We decided to get out of the house and take advantage of the free evening, even though Edith is a little young to appreciate the museum. We arrived and were greeted chaos. To say we were a little overwhelmed by the mass of families with busy little children running all around is an understatement.  We took a stroll around the museum, trying to orient ourselves, eventually searching out the baby room and making a beeline to it as soon as we found it.

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Although there are many fun activities at the museum such as the water room, the play cafe/market and forest, among other things they were all a little too old and too packed for us.  The baby room on the other hand only had a few families in it and was much calmer. We played there for a bit with Edith and talked with a few other families.  Overall we had a wonderful time there as a family, however I’m not sure I would go to another free Friday night until Edith is a bit more mobile.

Not Exactly What I Had Expected

Cafe Au Play
Cafe Au Play

Cafe Au Play (Source)

There were plenty of great groups and resources for Lindsay as a mom and her and Edith as a mother-daughter pair back in Vermont.  Between the bi-weekly moms meet up group at the yoga studio, post partum yoga, and other mom’s groups there was plenty of avenues for her to get together with other moms outside of her own social circle (which proved quite handy since our social circle didn’t exactly contain a lot of other parents!).  One thing that you didn’t see so much (if at all) in Burlington were similar groups for dads and their children.  I mean obviously as she gets older, there would be plenty of opportunities to participate in her activities whether they be active, artistic or otherwise.  But, there wasn’t really any venue to meet and interact with other new dads.

I was pretty excited to find that there were a number of dad’s meet up groups in the area on meetup.com.  I found one group that seemed like a good fit. It was a group for new dads to get together and discuss how they were doing as new fathers.  The meetup was at a cafe that also serves as a childrens’ play area (it even has Play in the name).  As we prepared for the meetup, I started to worry that the group was more of a support group than a dad and children’s meet up group.  Lindsay and I both came to the conclusion that if the meet up was at a cafe that was meant to be a cafe for parents to take their children that it would at least be fun to introduce Edith to other children.  So, we got Edith ready and packed up and headed to the east side to grab something to eat and explore the area some before the meetup.

When I got there, Edith and I headed inside while Lindsay went off to try to get some work done. I ordered an Americano and panned the room while I waited, looking for the other members of the meet up group.  When I noticed them, I saw it was at this point, a couple of fathers quite a bit older than me, neither of which actually had their children with them.  I had also overheard them discussing postpartum depression, something I hadn’t experienced and couldn’t relate to. I started to get a little anxious and texted Lindsay asking for advice on what I should do.  I can get pretty anxious enough as it is when meeting new people, but realizing I’d be the only person at the dad’s meetup at the children’s cafe with a child and that, at least initially, I would struggle to find something to relate to these other dads with, I quickly changed my order from for here to “to go” and hurried out the door, back to the car with Edith in tow, hopefully without being noticed (I think the barista actually picked up on the situation as she asked me if I wanted to change my order to “to go” before I had a chance to ask her). While I think that it’s a great thing to have a support group like this for dads who are experiencing issues like postpartum depression and who generally are having a hard time with parenting, that just isn’t something I can relate to.

For now, I’ll continue trying to find a group of parents that I can relate to and make friends with for both myself and our family.

Munchkin Meals: 6 Months

Edith is finally old enough to participate in Munchkin Meals! I will be doing a post more on introducing solids and our method but for now I’ll just say we are doing a combo of pureed and baby led solids.

When we first started solids we were doing mostly just purees and to my surprise Edith LOVED them right from the start (except butternut squash and brown rice cereal that is). Now was she gets a bit older she is really loving having finger foods and just this week really started to learn how to feed herself.  She still likes to eat purees but now prefers the packets over us spoon feeding her all the time.

As for meals we are just starting to really have breakfast, lunch and dinner, Edith is still nursing (a lot) so that is her primary food source for now.  Around 8am I offer her a puree packet which she sometimes gobbles up but mostly just has a few slurps and gets bored with it. Then somewhere between 11:30-12:30 we sit down and have lunch together.  Her lunch usually consists of a puree and a veggie (peas, broccoli, sweet potato) and dinner (around 6pm) is more of the same as lunch.

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