Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Greeeaaatttest LOOVE of ALLLL!!!!!!!

Let me preface this post by officially stating that both Nicole and I love our children equally. That said, I must talk about Nicole’s very special love affair with Madeline!

Maddie LOVES Nicole. Loves loves love her. I won’t say more than me, because I am sure she has equal love for us (Ha!) but let’s just say my approval rating doesn’t really go up until Nicole is no longer an option. In the Coke/Pepsi challenge of Favorite Mom I would lose ever time! I’m okay with that because my theory is I will just bribe the kids when they get older and Mommy goes to work. Besides, we already know Nicole is going to be the stricter Mom so that alone will elevate my standing as well.

We think this bond is extra tight because from Day1 Nicole has been responsible for feeding Maddie and putting Her Maddiness to bed, while I took on Avery. It’s just the way it played out. By the time we thought of switching, to keep things balanced, Maddie was so entrenched in her nighttime routine that we thought why risk it? And who would want to disrupt this bond??

It’s cute when Maddie sees Nicole, how she responds to her voice, the big gummy smiles she gives her. She’ll sit with her at Nicole’s desk while Nicole is doing work. Sit on her lap and watch football on Sunday. But at night, the cuteness is over the top. I would take pictures if it weren’t for the flash. Nicole and Maddie are wrapped up in each other in the most adorable way. Nicole is usually on her side, with her hand on Maddie. And Maddie is on her side, facing Nicole with her mini hand on Nicole’s chest. Sometimes she is nuzzled into the crook of Nicole’s arm. And sometimes the are both on their backs, arms flung over their heads, softly snoring in sync.

Avery at night is so different. For reasons I don’t know she is suddenly waking again in the middle of the night and acting like it is time to start the day. This is any time between usually 2 and 4. She will coo and smile and grunt and make noises until you roll over and say something to her. If you look at her, it’s over. She looks at you right in the eye (she has had a while to adjust to the dark so she has cat-like vision now) and smiles the biggest smile you have every seen. And she has this innocent look on her face like “Hey, you’re up too? What a coincidence!” Who can say no to that face?

I couldn’t say no to that face, so I got up at 4 today. I settled her down with a bottle and then I held her on the couch till she fell asleep. Bad thing is I feel asleep too and since I turned the alarm off Nicole didn’t wake me up so I could go to the gym. Not starting my day off at the time really sets me back. The thing is I need to be up way before the girls get up. This makes sure I have the energy to go through the day with them. Without the gym to kick start my day, I am much more lethargic. We’ll have to take lots of stroller walks today to compensate.

We need a nighttime routine for Avery pronto. This is Maddie’s: She gets a kiss goodnight from me; she is placed in front of her sister so she can stare blankly at her while her sister returns the same blank stare, and then she disappears into our bedroom, where Nicole reads her Goodnight Moon (while she screams her head off), then gives her a bottle while nestled in the rock of Nicole’s arm, then a pacifier and finally sleep. The whole process takes anywhere between 10 and 20 minutes, depending on how much bottle she has and how long she needs to be held before Nicole can s-l-o-w-l-y withdraw her arm and pad softly out of the room. Avery we put on the play mat and let her play herself to sleep. Or we carry her around until her eyes slowly close. Or, if we are lucky. We sit with her on the couch and can read or watch TV or internet surf while she [hopefully] eases into a restful state.

What I wish, I wish she would nestle on my shoulder and sleep. If she did I would sit with her forever, But mostly she kicks and squirms until I turn her around, let her face me and practice standing. Sometimes she falls asleep standing up, and her little legs buckle under the weight of her giant tummy like marionette legs.

We are going to Northampton to leaf peep the last weekend of October and I am so excited. I hope it is high color! Fall is my favorite season and I am particular excited this year because I have a big fall leaf craft project, so I am excited to collect leaves. I
will post pictures when it is done.

Anyway, we are also going the second week in November and we might look at some houses, which bring us one step closer to getting a weekend retreat. We have to do that, or get a bigger apartment, because while the four of us in our apartment is doable, it does get cramped. Especially with all the girls’ stuff. But bigger apartments in NYC don’t come cheap! The market here is still strong. And your money doesn’t go far. We looked at a three bedroom apartment a couple of weeks ago. The bedrooms were all one after the other, so you had to walk through each one to get to the next. The kitchen and both bathrooms are prewar and need updating. The moldings and paint and floors all needed to be redone. Easily this place needed 100K of work. Maybe more. Asking price? 1.6 million dollars. And, to make it even more ridiculous, the monthly maintenence was $2600! That’s before mortgage and taxes! Outside of NYC, 1.6 million would go a very l-o-n-g way. It amazes me how not-far it goes here in the city.

Pictured above is Nicole and the girls in their new rocking chair. Next comes Miss Maddie in her new winter hat, a gift from her Auntie Nancy (holding Mads) and Auntie Annie. And who-can-say-no-to-that-face Avery?!


Kerry Lynn said...

Look at those eyelashes on Avery! They're both so pretty.

I'm glad to read that things are becoming easier for you all. The first few months are ridiculous huh?

I hope your leef peeping is colorful!

K J and the kids said...

OH MY LASHES !!!! boys always get the lucky you are that your girls finally did.
And it doesn't appear that the whole Rosie thing went to Maddie's head at all.

Syd and Cam LOVE LOVE LOVE your little Maddie and Nichole have going on.
I'm here to tell all comes back around. and it's not something that is always good.
Mommy I need a drink...Mommy I need to go potty...Mommy I'm hungry....NOOOOOO MAMA DO IT !!!!
sometimes I WISH Mommy J were still the MOST POPULAR GIRL at our house. :)

Can't wait to see the project !

Calliope said...

those are some stunning photos of some stunning girls!

gold star said...

oh, the cuteness. It's unbearable.

Have you looked into Washington Heights? You may be wedded to your current 'hood, but if you're not, you should check out north of 181st street. It is GORGEOUS and affordable and very hip with lots and lots of gay people with kids.

Have fun in Northampton!

infertilepediatrician said...

Hey I just saw a recall of Stokke mattress for the cribs that I think you guys have - The recall is for the Sleepi crib foam mattresses which are only found int he oval-shaped sleepi cribs by stokke w/ the following model numbers: 660321, 660320, 660301, 660305, 660318, 652268, 652269, 652246, 652247 and 652248. I'm sure you already know this but I just saw it in a journal that I got today. It doesn't say why it was recalled. More info at

ajs4ever said...

I just adore the hat picture!! Too cute:)

kate said...

I just want to say you have the CUTEST babies!!!