Friday, August 27, 2010

Katrina 5+

Five years ago today I was four days out of the hospital with a c-section and the Little Buddy was 9 days old. We were sitting on the couch watching the weather. I started to freak out and called my dad to tell him that the hurricane was coming and we needed to "get out". We needed to evacuate to North Carolina. He was on the golf course at the time. He hadn't seen an update since the day before and he said that it wasn't a big deal. Then he told us to check into a hotel. I flipped. I think that was the first and only time that I didn't fully accept my dad's advice as law. An hour later he called us back and told us to come on. By the time we got there it was the middle of the night and I gave W formula so I could drink wine. I was exhausted and still recovering from surgery. On Monday after the storm when we realized that we wouldn't be going home we decided to christen W in the Mountain Chapel. Grown men and women were crying for this baby. (and I am crying now). We still see people when we visit to this day who remember W as the Katrina baby.

W wouldn't sleep in his crib for 2 1/2 months. I will never forget the first time he and I came back to our house. He took a nap in his crib and slept like he had never slept before and that was when I knew I was ready to come home.

Hurricane Katrina seems so surreal. It seems like it was 20 years ago that I was living in Baton Rouge, post par tum depressed, with another couple who would turn out to be some of our best friends.

W will never grasp the full extent of what happened to him his first two months of his life. Fortunately he won't remember the mom that I was-crying all of the time but all the while loving him so fiercely.

I was and am lucky to have J as my husband. Patient and thoughtful of not only me and W but of what he needed to do to take care of our family.

We were lucky to have my parents put us up for 4 weeks while J and the firm got settled in BR. I realized this past weekend at the company's anniversary party just how special the firm is. I knew we were lucky to be a part of it but they really have some amazing people who responded in a way that many other companies never did, quickly, efficiently and always thinking of their employees and the future of the company.

Everyone has their story. and so I know that ours could have been much worse but the descriptions of our looted home still play in my mind. I can never remember if I really saw these things or if it's just what J described to me in detail. His whole closet scattered all over our bedroom. Our bed totally torn apart. A cocktail glass on the hallway floor with a bottle of vodka that the looters had left behind. My jewelry box left out open and empty of my grandmother's jewelry. More sentimental than valuable. The busted up back door swinging wildly open.

I remember the first time J brought W and I back to NOLA to visit. It was an inexplicably beautiful fall day. It was cool and sunny. I remember the way the sun shone through the trees.
I do. I remember driving down Magazine Street and eating on paper plates at Theo's pizza. It was the most delicious and happy meal that I had eaten in a long time.

Sighhhhhh! Fiver years later we are looking back and thanking God for bringing us home. Like I said, everyone has their story and I don't think any of us will ever tire of telling our own because it was like the strangest dream you have ever had.

Today W is five years old, starting Pre-K and loving every minute of it. Five years ago I never had time to imagine what this day would be like for him. For a few months we lost our dreams for our children. But now we can start dreaming again.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Dirty Sponges

I have a thing about sponges. Used dry sponges gross me out. I can't take the smell. Then when you wet them they smell worse. AND the stank clings to your hands if you touch the sponge. It's a distinct smell. Do you know it? For so long I thought it was our New Orleans water that gave them this stench. but when I went to visit my parents their sponge smelled the same way. No one else seems to smell this smell except for me. Anyway, I went to Luke last night with Uncle RaRa and Aunt JoJo. The restaurant smelled like those stenchy sponges. and on our way to the back where we were to be seated, the smell just got worse like they were wiping down the place with my old sponges. Yuck. But that was the only thing that bugged me about Luke. It hasn't always been my first choice of restaurants. I have always sat in the front room and it makes me feel like I am in a cheap hotel lobby. But last night we ate in the back, near the kitchen. I loved it! The food as always was delicious and the service if anything was rushed but still good. OMG. I cannot wait to go back and eat one of their onion tartes all by myself. The waiter explained the cooking process to us. They take puffed pastry, bake it lightly then pan saute it, put the brie de meaux (I think it was that) and carmelized onions on top and melt it down. To die for. My mouth is watering as I type.

When we decided to go to Luke I was kind of bummed. I am trying to eat healthy and light but I knew that I would have to have the Croque Madame if I went there. I actually was encouraged to get the chicken over the CM by the waiter. I wasn't disappointed. MMMMMM-MMMMM. We arrived around 6:20 and were home by 8:00. So it was quick and easy and delicious. They just need to bleach their sponges.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I know this is a late post but
Happy Birthday Baby LB!!!! I was so happy to meet you. You are beautiful.

My fans are missing out on this absolutely adorable new baby girl. I can't post a photo because she is not technically mine but oh my, you would just want to eat her up.

Uncle RaRa and Aunt JoJo should have their sweet baby soon and then I will have two new baby girls in my life. and boy will Auntie Ann spoil them rotten.

You are not alone!

W is a nonstop chatterer. This from a child who didn't speak until well past 2. I mean, he goes on and on and on and on and on and on and on and get my drift. He is a crazy talker. He asks a ton of questions, especially in the car. He is fascinated with the break, ignition, gas pedal, how fast we are going, the green lights, stopping at red lights. But he also just talks. It's almost like he just talking to hear himself talk. I do that every now and then so I am not judging. I mentioned this new phase to J and he said, "I know. I love it!" What a great dad. I do too but sometimes....well, I won't say it.

So this morning I was going through my emails, the ones that I skip over but have to get to at some point. The one from Baby Center said this:

"Ages 4 and 5 are sometimes called the chatterbox years. Talking is how your child gets a handle on the intricacies of the language and also learns, expresses new ideas, and forms social relationships. So be patient if your 5-year-old doesn't ever seem to pause. This is an important and necessary developmental stage-not to mention a fun one. Hearing her every thought expressed is like having a window into her brain!"

I like when I read stuff like this because I know I am not alone.

A Little Bit of a Break

Big sigh of relief! They are both at school and I am feeling good. Pman had his first day on Monday. Can't show you a photo because they broke my camera cord but he sure looked cute. What to do with myself.......Hmmmmm. A good friend said she was feeling empty having both kids in school. Me, not so much. I love them with all of my heart but I am ready for a little bit of a break. And believe you me, it really is a "little bit of a break" because before you know it they are out for conferences, and fall holiday and teacher development day. The list goes on.

But anyone who questions my loyalty as a mom should think twice. This time inspires me to not only be a better person, more fit, more patient and to pursue interests that I haven't had time for in the past 5 years but also and more importantly to be a better mom. After our morning away yesterday I sat on the floor and did a gargantuan puzzle with W. That took us forever but we had fun. Then we sat in the sun porch and read his new library books. It's been awhile since we spent quality time like that. We all played basketball with big tupper ware containers in the hallway. I admit, it started to go down hill about the time we went outside to blow bubbles. But up until then we were all happier and having more fun than we have had in a long time.

So welcome back all you moms who needed just a little bit of a break.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

W starts Pre-K

Can you believe it? That five years ago W was born and about to be torn out of his home to live in evacuation mode? and now he is starting Pre-K. My baby.

He had a great day. It could have a lot to do with the fact that Thursdays are always donut day but I think that he just had an all around fun time. I also think that he was as ready to go back to school as I was to have him go back to school. It was a little bittersweet but, golly I was ready. We were all bored and hot sitting around this city with nothing to do. Our pool is now closed during the week. My kids are not huge fans of the monkey room and I am too lazy to take them each and every day somwhere to keep them entertained. Nothing wrong with a little creative boredom, is there? Wrong. It was driving us all crazy.

So off we went for his first day of big boy school, with his big boy backpack, ready for whatever came him way. Here he is. I think I overdid it on the backpack but I didn't want to get the small one and then have him look like a baby to all the other kids. Little did I know that it would be bigger than him.

and good news for all of us. Once school really gets rolling I will have the much desired time that I need to keep up with my fans! Happy schooling everyone.