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Tuesday, June 27, 2006

UBER excited

Julie is my bestest friend and I'm super excited to announce that she is coming out for a week-long visit in July! She found great deals on flights and booked them last night. I have been desperate to see her again since we moved back from St. Louis in February.

I only wish I could keep her for good. That or woo her enough to convince her and her husband to move out here when they get their Ph.D.s in a few months...
They were our first friends when we moved out to St. Louis 5 years ago and became our best friends over those first few months. We saw eachother through the first few years of being newly married, enduring graduate school, jobs, pregnancy, and becoming new parents. I've been begging for her to book a trip out here with her baby girl for months and finally my wish has come true!!! I can hardly stand it.

Oh what fun we will have. My mind is racing with ideas.

But first, I plan to collect my hugs!

Grand Opening

Stroller Strides of Pasadena, South Pasadena, and Arcadia had it's grand opening event at Caltech last Thursday. Guess who was the instructor? Yours truly.

There was a huge turnout with 26 moms besides myself and the franchise owner.
Afterwards we had refreshments, snacks, prizes, and we even had storytime with a lady who came over from Book Alley, a local bookstore. The babies seemed to congregate all around her as she read, which was so cute.

Dylan with a couple of his little friends (and my friend, Genese).

Besides a few glitches, which managed to keep me on my toes throughout the class... it was a fabulous class. The sun was hot, but the campus has a lot of shaded areas, so moms and babies stayed happy. And I think I worked everyone pretty hard, which is good, being that each mom comes with a different level and different motivation - and I tried to target all fitness levels as best as I could. It was a great experience, as I'd never done something like that before. Lots of positive feedback afterwards too, which was nice.

Here I am with a couple of my friends after the class (Jessica and Anamara).

From now on, that will be my class. It is so great to meet new moms and bond together as a group. Our class in South Pasadena has really bonded these past few months and I'm excited to start up this new group of moms.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Mr. Banana Grabber

Look, a seagull! Our little guy decided to be a Mr. Banana Grabber the other day. We gave him a banana to feed himself, and he sure enjoyed it.

He absolutely would not let go of it, though, and it turned into a banana smoothie in his fingers.
He had a bit of fun feeding himself some mashed banana, but it was short-lived.
In the end we had to take it away, and he kicked himself for a poor business decision. He never should have given up bananimation rights.

Reference: Arrested Development


Monday, June 19, 2006

smoking cessation

Many friends and family have asked "exactly what does Ryan work on at Caltech?" Thankfully someone else was able to put it into terms the rest of us can understand. Read on.

The Caltech homepage headlines Ryan's lab with the research grant they are working under. It says (for those of you who don't get to it via the link above):

New Drugs for Smoking Cessation to Be the Target of Grant-Funded Partnership
The California Institute of Technology has been awarded a five-year grant for $4.6 million from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to develop a program for discovering medications aimed either at helping people avoid nicotine addiction or at helping smokers to quit. The project will include researchers from the University of Colorado at Boulder and from Targacept, a North Carolina-based biopharmaceutical company whose scientists are leaders in research focused on a class of receptors known as neuronal nicotinic receptors.

Pretty cool in my opinion. It is nice to know that all his hard work is worthwhile in the grand scheme of research and hopefully will lend to helping others someday. In fact, one of the driving factors in Ryan's interest in this field is the prevalence of smoking and smoking related health problems in both of our families. It is so unfortunate how much research actually goes into making cigarettes MORE addictive, and thankfully there is counterbalanced research efforts for people wanting to quit. I'm proud to say that my husband is working on one of those efforts.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

daddy's day

For Ryan's first Father's Day, he enjoyed watching the World Cup, then his family came up from San Diego for the afternoon to celebrate Father's Day and Teri's birthday together.

Today I honor my husband for being a wonderful father and friend. His love for Dylan and I is apparent with just about everything he does and I'm so grateful for him in my life. I see how dedicated his dad is, and it is no wonder where he got that beautiful trait from. I love watching him as a father and it melts my heart when Dylan looks around for him in the room, excited when he finds "daddy." I love you Ryan. Thank you for being, well, YOU.

In front of the fountain outside our townhome.

Ryan and his dad got a joint present for Father's Day (giftcard to a golf course in San Diego). I'm sure the guys are going to enjoy using that together in a few weeks!

Ryan, Meghan, and Matt.

Dylan enjoyed playing with his Uncle Matt (left) and Aunt Meghan (below).

Aunt Meghan, always putting funny boxes on her head! Dylan can't get enough.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

the beach

Dylan and I went with a group of friends to Huntington Beach. The weather was perfect. It was his first real beach experience and I must say that it wore both of us out! (after baths and such, we both passed out until daddy got home)

It was halarious to watch how differently the boys vs. girl babies responded to the beach. See how my little guy is pulling up on the umbrella and the other babies are sitting in one spot? I sure got my exercise that day chasing him around.

Dylan was most definitely one of the BOYS: eating sand, picking up discarded bits of food, you name it! (it didn't help that he is teething - top two teeth - and so EVERYTHING went into this little guy's mouth)

Dylan loved the water, playing and stomping around, splashing and feeling the water come up and over his legs. All in all, a VERY fun afternoon!

Friday, June 16, 2006

nap nazi

I lovingly refer to my husband as the nap nazi. Whenever Dylan and I are out running errands, off working out, or otherwise, and I check in with Ryan, I get the routine question - "Has Dylan had a nap yet today?"
And when he gets home everyday after work, similarly, "how long did he sleep today?" It cracks me up. I know he is serious about wanting to make sure Dylan gets good naps during the day - but HE DOES get at least one good nap at home EVERYDAY and yet Ryan still worries about it. I guess if he is going to worry about something, at least he feels confident that I keep him safe and happy and he doesn't feel the need to ask me "so did he fall down the stairs today?"
Nevertheless, Ryan is officially the NAP NAZI.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

expressive baby

People comment to me that Dylan is a "busy little boy," super "friendly," and always with a "lot on his mind." He is always up to something and you can tell by looking at his experessions. Here are a few of the snapshots we got that show his expressiveness.

"Hmmm... How do I get up there?"
"So, guys, are you telling me that I am NOT supposed to touch it? Oh, you mean like this?" (Dylan really seems to be drawn to the entertainment center - and this is the look we get when we try to tell him not to touch it).

And I have NO idea what he was thinking in this one.
And this is one of my current favorites.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

noodle fun

Dilly was having some noodles for dinner and somehow got one in his hair (OK, we put it there to have some fun. HeeHee)

He tried and tried to figure out how to get that noodle.
He struggled to get it off his face and out of his hair...
Good parents would have helped him out, but then they probably wouldn't have put in on his head to begin with. In the end we all had fun (and Dylan finally got the noodle).

Monday, June 12, 2006

fall at daycare

Silly Dilly fell today at daycare and bumped his lip. Per his caregiver's report, he was playing and fell. I guess he was practicing his standing up skills and toppled over. Apparently he was bleeding pretty bad for a bit, but it got better and he was fine by the time I got the message at work and called them back. When I got there to pick him up tonight, he was drinking a bottle in Shashi's arms and when he saw me, he cried like he was saying "mommy, i had a tough day. pick me up!" It broke my heart. Knowing that I couldn't be the one to dry his tears and make him feel better after he fell today is hard to swallow as a mommy. My only consolation to myself is that I get to be with him 5 days a week and he only has to be at daycare 2 days a week, which is a pretty good deal.
Ryan weighed Dylan last night and he is roughly 21.5 pounds. So at 11 months, he roughly falls in the 40th percentile (not bad for a baby who was falling off the curve at 6 months old at only 12.5 pounds!)
Tomorrow is my Friday at work (even though it is only Tuesday), and I'm looking forward to the rest of the week. We are going to Huntington Beach with some friends on Thursday (Dylan's first time in the sand at the beach) - which should be fun. And on Friday we have plans for a pool playdate with another group of friends.

Got sunscreen? = Will play.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Katie May turns ONE

Today our beloved friends Rob & Julie celebrate their daughter's first birthday.

The amazing thing is that I remember the day she was born just about as good as I remember my own son's birth day. I remember talking to Julie about how the 9 months of pregnancy felt like eternity, especially those last few days. I remember the calls/pages at work to announce that Julie was in labor (with a false alarm added in for good measure) and again when Katie finally arrived. I remember driving out to see our new little friend at the hospital that night after dinner and driving home later on with great anticipation for the upcoming labor and delivery of our son. Little did we know that we would meet our own little bundle of joy just 4 weeks later. I was inspired by Julie not only througout my pregnancy, but in the inital weeks of motherhood with nursing and enduring those first few weeks and months of parenthood when we felt like our world had come crashing on us to the tune of a baby screaming in the background. Julie has been my best friend for about 5 years now, and our friendship only got more precious to me with the birth of our babies. And ready or not, our worlds are about to be shaken up again with the transition of our babies into toddlerhood.

So today we send this post filled with happy birthday wishes to Katie as well as congratulations to her parents on the anniversary of the day that rocked their world.

Note: Dylan took his first steps last night, on the eve of Katie's birthday! Ryan and I were playing with him before bed and he casually stood up about 3 feet from the coffee table, paused for a brief moment, and took a step. It was a beautiful moment. Ryan and I exchanged looks of "oh my gosh, he did it!!!" and I bounced across the room into his arms with excitement. Dylan got excited by all our happiness and crawled over to us to get in on the hugs. Cute little peanut. (sigh) I'm in love...

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

saved for future wife

Ryan is convinced that this is the funniest picture yet of Dylan. He was having a love affair with his gerber cookie and this was the aftermath. He's actually been doing something new lately where he keeps some food in one of his fists and won't let it go (see how he's got a fist full of cookie below). And then he puts up such a protest when you attempt to show him how to get to it.

Wouldn't it be halarious to show this picture to his future wife someday?


Today (at 11 months old) Dylan said what I think counts as his first word. He was sitting in his high-chair and saw Thaddeus (our cat) across the room and got excited and exclaimed "kee-kee-ka" which sounded an awful lot like Kitty-Cat.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


Dylan loves this push-toy. He zooms off across the room whenever he can get his hands on it... that is, until he runs it into the coffee table or wall or chair and can't go anymore. Then he transfers to the next piece of furniture for more cruising. He's a machine.

And here he is standing on his own. He is so close to walking. We keep thinking "today is the day" for his first steps, but not yet.

Monday, June 05, 2006

LA Arboretum

After a long hot walk the other day through the LA Arboretum with a friend, we came across this beautiful waterfall. It was so lovely and I had to consciously refrain from jumping in. Ah, but it would have felt wonderful.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Grand Opening at Caltech

On June 22nd, little D-Man and I are going to be head-mama/baby for the newest Stroller Strides class. I went through the instructor training course for primary group fitness in Malibu at Pepperdine a few weeks ago. And now the date is set for the grand opening day of the Caltech Stroller Strides class - free for any new moms intersted in checking it out. I'll be the instructor for the Thursday morning class from 9-10am. I'm excited. I've been preparing for this for a couple months now, taking as many classes in South Pasadena that I could with Dylan in tow. He loves seeing all the other babies and watching his mama run around, strength training, and getting back into shape for the summer! And to be honest, it is really helping me feel like me again, which is a fabulous feeling. Just the other day after class another mom that I hadn't seen in a few weeks commented that I "looked good" and that was lovely to hear. Living in LA can be difficult sometimes with all the glamour and high-society types running around... but getting out of myself a few times a week to workout with other women who have common goals of regaining their bodies pre-baby, and helping them do it, makes me feel better. Less than 3 weeks to the grand opening at Caltech. Wish me luck!!!

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