azriona: (cat in a box)
My parents have been bugging me about family portraits - which I can understand, it's been a long time since we had any, and we sure don't have any with Charlie in them, which is wrong on many, many levels. Enter Groupon, enter Picture People, and here we go:

Pictures of Cuteness. Also me and Bill. )

All in all, a good session. The kids are cute, Bill is wearing colors, and I hate my chin. Not bad for $13 (plus the photo CD) and a morning's work (which involved getting everyone out the door by 9:30 and looking presentable). 
azriona: (cat in a box)

Okay, next to the snow.  He was very patient while Bill and I shoveled the driveway, though. I could swear I had baby snow boots, but I can't find them anyway, and I think I might have lent them to a family last year who never gave them back and then moved to Atlanta.  Where they are probably not going to need them.  *sigh*

There was not an obsene amount of snow, but there was enough that school was cancelled today (Monday).  I haven't left the house since... Wednesday last week, I think, so I don't have a clue what the roads are like out there, though Bill had a doctor's appointment today so I'm sure he'll fill me in.  I'm hoping school starts up again tomorrow, because Andrew is bored stiff, and I think Charlie's getting stir-crazy.

Of course, I woke up this morning feelng like death warmed over, and I've had a cough the last couple of days.  Otherwise okay; no fever, no runny nose, no sore throat.  Just achey muscles and a cough.

In other news... The Country Omega comes out tomorrow!  I think I will probably do a fairly obnoxious blitz on Tumblr & Twitter tomorrow, or maybe starting tonight, so feel free to ignore me if you like.  And there's already two reviews/ratings for it on Goodreads, which is kind of exciting.

And I can hear Andrew stomping around somewhere (Charlie is napping) so I should probably check in on him and see how he is.  He complained about a headache this morning, but when I offered Tylenol, refused.  And he doesn't seem sick otherwise, just bored.

(I know, bored, with a metric ton of snow outside.  But then, it's also cold, and he refuses to wear a hat or gloves no matter what I do.)
azriona: (cat in a box)
Last week, I ordered prettyvk's really awesome fandom blocks for Charlie (her Etsy store is here; the blocks themselves are here), and they arrived yesterday.  He promptly gave his approval by attempting to eat them.  I promptly took out the camera at which point he took the blocks out of his mouth because this child is already onto me about blackmail photos.  Clever kid.

Photos! )
azriona: (cat in a box)
I should find another moniker.

Anyway, Charlie's asleep in his baby carrier and Andrew's at school, so I'm going to post some pictures for you lovely patient people who have not only put up with my random swiss-cheese-brain ramblings, but also no pictures attached.

SO.  I have a new camera.  I'm slowly falling into puppy love with it (at the moment, it's just serious like).  The big change is that it's NOT a Nikon.  I've been using Nikon for ages, but I knew I wanted a smaller camera than my defunct DSLR, and so I was seriously looking at the "new" mirrorless cameras, which are like halfway between point-and-shoots and DSLRs, both in terms of abilities and average price - but are approximately the same size, if not a bit smaller, as the larger point-and-shoots.  I ended up liking the Sony Alpha the best, mostly because it was one of the few that I could try in the store, and it has a viewfinder, which for me is a big plus.  And so far, it's been taking pretty good photos, including a couple which I think are just outstanding.

(Also, it has wifi.  Apparently this is a Thing now, giving camears Wifi, but that means that theoretically I can take a picture, transfer it to my phone, and then post it to Tumblr, without getting on the computer.  Which I might start doing for the food photos, because my phone takes crappy photos of my yummy food.)

In other news, before I head to pictures:

1. Mom went home this morning.  From here on out, I am outnumbered by boys.  I may never be able to watch figure skating again.

2. I'm going to post my Sherlock remix fic tomorrow, because it is finished and I can.  I'm not sure WHEN, because my life depends on the sleeping patterns of a five-week-old, but hey, it'll go up.  Eventually.

3. Charlie's waking up.  Better post pictures fast.

Pictures! )
azriona: (cat in a box)
Andrew had a bit of a fever yesterday afternoon - it was just peaking at 100 when I gave him some ibuprofen, and that brought it down to the 98s, which is at least tolerable if not normal for him. (He's usually in the 97s.) He's also been peeing like mad; he went through his entire drawer of shorts yesterday and I'm going to have to do laundry this morning as a result. (If I'd been smart, I would have pulled the dirty laundry out of his room before he went to sleep. Alas, I was not smart.)

Anyway, there's a writer's group meeting today, but Andrew hasn't woken up yet so I haven't taken his temp so I don't know if he'll even be attending school. If it's normal, I might send him; if it's still elevated, I might not. And even if I do send him, I'm not sure I want to go the group, because it's not nearby this week, it's in Zamalek, which is a good 45-minute drive away. (Well, ten, if there's no traffic, but there's always traffic, and it's always insane because I don't think half the people driving actually have licenses. Seriously, one of my favorite PSAs on the radio is the one where drivers are asked not to go the wrong way down the highway just because they see a traffic jam up ahead.)

The only thing pulling me toward going to writer's group is that there's only three submissions for today, and I'm one of them, and there's a second where the writer has missed the last two meetings, so I'm thinking there's an increased likelihood she'll miss this one as well, which leaves only one submission. Not that anyone will mind, I think, because apparently Zamalek has excellent shopping, and I have the feeling at least one participant wants to do some.

And frankly, I'm going to worry too much about being that far away if something happens with Andrew, assuming I do actually send him to preschool today. (If I don't send him, I don't go.)

And if I do send him, I just spend the morning writing the next bit of Heart3.

*types furiously*

Okay, done. No writer's group for me, regardless of Andrew's temp when he wakes up. I might be overreacting a little bit, but considering Andrew's history, I think I'm entitled.

Anyway, without further ado, here's a picture of Andrew and me and a picnic gone awry )
azriona: (Andrew - open mouth)
So Andrew's vocabulary has progressed far enough that he can have actual conversations. Sort of. It should be noted that he doesn't really conjugate his verbs correctly (we're working on that) and like most toddlers, he demands rather than requests. But it's usually pretty clear what he means. For instance, when he wants me to come sit beside him, instead of saying, "Momma, come sit beside me", he said, "Momma, sitting!" As follows:

Andrew: Momma, sitting!
Me: Okay, give me a minute.
Andrew: Momma, TODAY!

I laughed for five minutes. (I also went to sit next to him.)

Possible TMI re: potty training and school )

Andrew drives a car! )
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
So technically, Opening Day was yesterday, but Bill was home yesterday and thus had the ability to take off Andrew's shirt and replace it with something horrible, like the C.C. Sabathia shirt that I have not yet managed to burn in effigy.

I would also like to point out that I did not put Andrew into this shirt merely because [ profile] earlgreytea68 is going to start posting her baseball AU today, but if she'd like to take it as incentive to post it sooner rather than later, I'm perfectly happy for that interpretation to be used.

azriona: (Andrew - open mouth)
Yes, yes, lax about posting, etc and so forth. Next week is spring break which is just prompting all sorts of excitement around here. I have become very used to having my mornings to myself. I like my Andrew-free mornings. Don't get me wrong, picking Andrew up at school is definitely a highlight of my day, but that's because it immediately follows around four hours of Andrew-free time.

There's supposed to be an Easter parade on Friday, which means I have to decorate a hat for Andrew. I have NO IDEA how I'm going to do this, because (a) Andrew does not wear hats. He seems to think they are not a fashionable thing to have on one's head. And slightly more important, (b) Andrew does not own a hat that fits him. We do, however, have lots of baseball caps that fit his father's head, and I'm thinking to do something with that, but Bill has already demanded to know exactly what I'm going to do to the cap, which I can't tell him because I haven't figured out what I'm going to do yet. I'm half tempted to try attaching cars or trains to the hat, because if you're a boy, and you're going to wear a hat, you want it covered in trains and trucks. And mud, but I'm not going to offer that as an option.

In other news, Andrew's been talking more and more. He's gotten to the point where he talks all the time, but it's hard to tell what he's saying. And then he'll pop out with a perfectly understandable sentence: "Look at all the cars!" Which would have been truly awesome, apart from the fact that it's five words long, had he actually been looking at cars at the time. (He wasn't, he was looking inside the courtyard in the center of the complex, where there are no cars. Well, maybe the parking lot, but you can't really see that from where he was standing.)

There are those of you who will likely be thrilled to hear that Andrew pronounces "zebra" as "zehbra", instead of "zeebra". I think it's kind of cute and am making no effort to correct him; I'm also pretty sure he'll outgrow it once he no longer has British teachers. In the meantime, feel free to add that to the list of Reasons Why Andrew Is a Time Lord.

Anyway, pics of Andrew. )
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
Bill's father was in town last month, so we managed to work in a bit of travel. With Andrew, who as you might be able to discern, is less impressed with 5,000 year old rocks than he is the 5,000 year old dirt that surrounds them. Somewhere, there is a French tourist who has as part of her travel photographs some shots of Andrew, covered first in a layer of dirt, and then in a layer of chocolate ice cream. (The shirt, despite rinsing and dousing in anti-stain solution, was a complete loss.)

Travel Pictures! )
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
I have been terribly lax with the CBMs, I know, and now I've got a backlog. But because I'm also short on time and can't properly go through the backlog, I'm going to go with the most recent photo of Andrew and I will try to give you Andrew picspam next week.

Anyway, as my father-in-law is visiting this week, we went on a falucca ride Saturday evening. It was gorgeous on the river (yes, that one) and the sky was so clear we could even make out one of the Pyramids. The last time I went with Andrew on a falucca, it was just me and him and two other families, and Andrew was a wild man who spent the better part of two hours attempting to dive head-first into the river. This time, there were three of us against one, and it was nearly even. At least Andrew didn't get wet.

Sailor Boy )

In other Andrew-related news:

1. We had our second gymnastics class since returning to the UL. Once again, Andrew threw an absolute fit upon arriving (despite being all excited on our way), and refused to stay for the class. None of us have a clue what's going on - he loved class before we left for the holidays, absolutely adored it, never wanted to leave. And now he won't even go in the room. I'm trying to decide if I should just throw in the towel and ask for a refund, or give it another week and try again.

2. While trying to convince Andrew to go in, he turned to me (twice) and requested the potty. "Okay," I thought, and we went off to the potty, where Andrew diligently sat and...did nothing. I half think this was an attempt to get out of going to gymnastics.

3. And perhaps tied into all of, my rant last week regarding childcare expectations and what not? Well, the irony in the request was because I actually was trying to arrange for someone to get Andrew from preschool on Sunday (yesterday). Which I did - I had our housekeeper pick him up, because all the other preschools were off for President's Day, and thus my backup mommies were staying home. (I've picked up their munchkins on occasion, so I'm owed.)

Anyway, it went...well, not great. Andrew loves Nita, and Nita loves Andrew, but he clearly was not happy that I wasn't there. He asked Nita where I was. He asked his teachers where I was. When Nita arrived back at the complex, Andrew asked the guards where I was, and when his favorite guard, Hazem, tried to tease Andrew and get him to play, Andrew flatly refused to even look at him. He spent the next two hours sulking and demanding me and when he didn't get it, he demanded to get in the stroller and have Nita walk him in circles. (Perhaps on the theory that she would take him to me?)

And when I did finally get home...Andrew clung and did not let go. I couldn't even leave the room without Andrew coming looking for me. (Not wailing or crying or throwing hissy fits...just coming down the hall calling "Momma!")

So...the end result is that yes, Andrew will leave school with someone else. But he won't be happy about it, and he'll make sure I know it afterwards.

Which makes Wednesday's writer's group meeting potentially very interesting. I still haven't quite decided what to do about that...
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
Andrew and I went to Mystic Aquarium yesterday and had an excellent time. We were trying to meet up with friends coming out of Boston, but Andrew and I were running late and then he had a mind of his own about what he wanted to see. (Trying to coordinate the differing opinions of toddlers proves to be more difficult than you'd expect. Unless you parent a toddler, then you just have to keep relearning the lesson.)

Anyway, Andrew proved that he has a Thing for Penguins and Whales, because that's pretty much all he wanted to see. (We also saw sea lions and eels and sharks and Nemo-fish, but they didn't hold a candle to the penguins or the beluga whales.

Whales! )

But the best part about Mystic Aquarium, apart from Andrew falling asleep on the drive back home? You don't have to walk through the gift shop on your way out. GENIUS. I kind of wanted to go in and buy something as a thank-you for that particular consideration. But that would sort of defeat the purpose.
azriona: (cat in a box)
On Writing )

In the meantime, I meant to post this yesterday (it being Monday and all) but didn't get the chance, so I'll post it now.

Cute Baby Monday - Santa Edition )

And that about covers it - Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, and if none of those apply: I hope your days are lovely and end with a smile on your face.
azriona: (Andrew - open mouth)
So it's three years to the day since Andrew joined the family (well, two years if you're going from the legal standpoint), and in celebration of that, he threw a party. Okay, it was a somewhat impromptu party, because Jazz's mom came over and we baked cookies, and Lila came with and together the three of them wrecked the living room. Seriously, they found every single toy of Andrew's and pulled it out and tested it, then they found the musical instruments and started playing them all full volume.

And thus, when Andrew was three, he started a band. )

So.....can anyone think of any good band names? Best one gets a free copy of their first CD. Or possibly something awesome from the UL. I haven't decided. :)
azriona: (Default)
I was tempted to title this "Exhausted Mother" edition, but the Birthday is probably more appropriate. Andrew was hacking up a lung when he woke this morning, so he stayed home from school. I knew this was the correct option, because while normally mentioning Teacher Jane is met with skips and hops and Andrew repeating "TeacherJane" ad nauseum, today the reminder that school and Teacher Jane were waiting brought only an "Eh".

Thus, I was not terribly productive today, although we did make an orange-raisin bread that will be making its way into Mise.

Therefore, once again I lean on Bill's growing video skillz, and bring you video of Andrew and his birthday presents. I think this might be the best video Bill has done yet, and I'm not saying that just because Bill knows where I sleep.

azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
Andrew's preschool is really good about sending out photographs every day of the various activities his class is doing. I'm...not so good at actually looking at the photographs, because sometimes there's quite a lot and Andrew might only be in a few of them (and usually, the photographs aren't really that fantastic).

However, there was a set of photos from last week that was downright hysterical. Not because they were really lovely photographs, but because they so obviously tell a story, and I knew once I saw them that I had to use them for CBM.

This, I should note, is made even funnier when you consider that I've been watching a lot of Gordon Ramsay lately. Not that Andrew's awake when I'm doing it; maybe he's getting it all by osmosis?

Andrew and the Toy Kitchen )

I'll try to write up an entry that doesn't deal with Sherlock, writing, and/or Andrew - it's been kind of hectic here, and due to become more so in the near future. (Much to my dismay; I could do with some downtime.)
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)

Halloween did not go quite as planned this year, on many levels. For one thing, Andrew was supposed to attend two Halloween parties. He fell asleep ten minutes into one and the second was cancelled. For another, Bill was going to take Andrew around and be part of the Halloween costume - and then he ended up having to work late.

But the final kicker is that Andrew flatly refused to wear his costume at all, screamed like I was murdering him when I tried to get him to wear it, and ended up trick-or-treating while wearing a bathrobe.

(Worse: I could have at least done something INTERESTING with the bathrobe, and gotten him to carry a towel, thus turning him into Arthur Dent, but NOOOOOOO, I didn't think of that until after the night was over. Dammit.)

On the other hand, the cookies I handed out went over very well, so yay for that.

And I did get pictures of Andrew's Official Halloween Costume in the ten minutes before he fell asleep at the party last week, so at least there's something for the scrapbook.

It's a bit of a break from tradition, since it's not sci-fi related, but it does harken back to our childhoods, so I figure it's still good. )
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
I thought I had new photos of Andrew, but apparently not. So here's some video from the London trip, which is clearly still sustaining CBM for the time being.

I'm not sure who's being Trained, but I'm pretty sure it's not the Potty )
azriona: (Gratuitous picture post)
Big news: Andrew peed in the potty yesterday! Okay, well, he started on the floor, but he was standing NEXT to the potty, so I just moved him for the last bit. Then I cheered like mad. I'm not sure he was impressed, but he liked getting three stickers as a reward.

(If he ever poops in the potty, he gets a CAR.)

Enough about the trials of potty training. More photos of Andrew in London under the cut. )

Andrew would like to say the following:


azriona: (Default)
Yes, yes, it's Tuesday. Hush.

For those of you reading The Heart in Him, consider this a preview of coming attractions for tomorrow. The rest of you: just enjoy.

Having just seen Downton Abbey's latest episode, I just want to know why, if the actress playing Sybil didn't want to continue playing Sybil, they didn't just find another actress. I mean, we are talking about a costumed soap opera here, and I'm sure they could have explained a facial reconstruction in terms of the early 1920s somehow.

I realize, of course, that this proposition makes no sense whatsoever and is probably just me being mad that Sybil was killed off. I suppose it could have been worse; she could have fallen off the roof of Downton. 'Cause that's working out terribly well for all other shows out there.
azriona: (Andrew - open mouth)
Home again, home again, and for there only being one hour's difference between the UL and London, good lord but it's hard to get over the jet lag. The fact that Bill and I are both somewhat sick isn't helping, and Andrew keeps sleeping until 9am, which would be fine, except he's also staying awake until 10pm. Today was a mad rush because it's picture day at school, and I didn't want him to miss out. (I think I got him there in time, though - all his classmates were having their pictures taken, one by quivering-lipped one, so we'll see what we get in a few weeks.)

That said, leaving him at school was a BREEZE. We watched his classmates for a few minutes and then I turned to him and said, "Okay, Andrew, I'll see you later." And he gave me a hug and a wave and said, "Bye, Momma!" And that was that. EASIEST DROP-OFF EVER.


In other Andrew news (because hey, it's CBM, I can inflict as much Andrew-news as I like and not feel guilty about it), I have before me Andrew's first-term report from school. Well, sort of first-term, basically outlining his first five weeks at school. Mostly, I have trouble believing that he's been at school for five weeks now (minus the one week we were in London). My favorite parts: "Seeks attention by doing things he has learnt attracts instant attention - playing in sink, climbing bookcase, etc. Not aware of safety aspects at all."


I should probably not find that to be half as funny as I do,'s Andrew, who tried to nose-dive into the river to see the fish and jumped off a hill and cracked his tooth on the pavement and has been able to climb the staircases since before he could walk.

And anyway, the very next line reports that he can count to ten. I have no idea if this is advanced stuff for a nearly-three-year old, but I'm going with "pleased" as a reaction, which is at least not as awful as outright laughter.

Anyway, pictures from last week, some of which definitely prove that (a) Andrew has very little regard for personal space and (b) Momma will take a picture of just about anything.

Photos! )

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