Sunday, January 31, 2010

Benny Got a Bath

Here he is, totally clean after a hilarious bath.

We stripped Salvatore down to his diaper and gave him the camera.  He kept asking if he was going to get in the bath with Benedict.  We basically ignored him because we had our hands full with keeping Benedict in the shower and catching all of his dog hair so as not to ruin our drain.

Benedict is always reluctant to get in at first, and then loves it while we wash him.  You can really feel his 92 lb. weight when you are trying to hold him and keep him from spraying you completely when he shakes.

He also likes to drink the soapy water!  
In the summer, we bathe him often outside with the hose and he is dry in minutes with the sun.  But, these wintry days make it harder to bathe him.  After 10 minutes of laughing, struggling, swearing (it was me), and shampooing, he was finally clean.  Then I had to reclean the bathroom and wash every towel we have.  Maybe, just MAYBE, we will let him sleep with us again tonight.  After all, he is our first baby.


Salvatore, like his daddy, loves limes.

I Win!

I woke up this morning because Salvatore was gently patting the side of my face.  As I opened my eyes, he exclaimed, "Hi, mama!" I whispered to him, "I love you" and he replied, "I love you, too."  So I said it again, and he replied the same.  I did it again, and so did he. This went back and forth for over a minute.  And he had the biggest smile on his face.  Finally, I said, "I love you more." He looked confused for a minute, and said, "I love you more."  I beat him with my, "Well, I love you more because I loved you first.  I loved you before you were born, before we even conceived you, ok?"  His answer? "O.K. Momma, you win."

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Throwback Thursday

Wednesdays are "Wordless" and Fridays are for "Fingerprints".  Let's make a "Throwback Thursday" and remember some special times.  Salvatore is 25 months old, but here is a favorite picture from when he was 5 months old.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

See the Difference?

My 6 month belly in the MORNINGS...

My 6 month belly EVERY NIGHT!
And it is not from eating a lot of food all day long, it is just her position.  But come evenings, I am very uncomfortable and achy already.  Scares me because I did not feel that with Salvatore, and I still have 3 1/2 months to go!

Sunday, January 24, 2010


I shop at Costco about twice a month.  I can't get all of my shopping done there, so I also visit Albertson's and Target regularly, but for some big stuff, Costco gets the job done.  However, it brings out the worst in my flawed character and I leave feeling strange.  

Here's why:

1.  People push carts like they drive-good drivers push nicely and humanely, bad drivers make me want to shoot them.
2.  Samples are never ready when  you walk by, yet 30 people stand around and wait for teriyaki chicken or seafood salad like their lives depended on it.
3.  Younger people make older family members push the carts and they SUCK at it!
4.  I end up opening AT LEAST 8 egg cartons before finding one that has all eggs intact.
5.  There is always some major shipment of toilet paper or bicycles when I am trying to get through the aisles, so I have to give way to the forklifts.
6.  I convince myself that my family and I need the 20 lb. bag of Doritos.  Really, we don't.
7.  They constructed the building so that the carts that you need to enter are right past the exit, so you have to wait for a cart, then push it past the same people in #1 and #3 who are trying to leave just to get to the entrance.
8.  The food court is cheap, but cash only-WHAT THE HELL IS THAT ABOUT?
9.  They only sell bulk shampoo/conditioner for NORMAL HAIR. Who the hell has "normal hair"?  
OH THE HUMANITY!!!!!!!!!  I'll go back in a week.  I will need more milk and diapers.

My 6 Month Belly

Here is my 6 month belly!  Usually, she sits very low, and in the mornings and evenings she looks quite small.  But come mid-day, she moves higher and it looks like I am 8 months pregnant.  I am still getting sick, although it is definitely getting less frequent and not as bad.  Heartburn and horrible dreams are the norm at night now, so I no longer look forward to crawling into bed at night.  I am still loving being pregnant, but can't wait to meet her!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Man in the Mirror

Salvatore and I were in my bathroom yesterday and he began to make silly/giggly faces at the cute baby looking back at him in the mirror.  He was completely enthralled with this "other" child, and he did everything from kissing to spinning round and round for him.  Such a show off!  I got great joy out of watching him perform for his reflection and began to wonder if he knew that he was looking at himself or not.  So I asked him:

Shal: "Do you see that cute baby in the mirror?"
Sal: "(Giggling) Yes"
Shal: "Is he your friend?"
Sal: " Yes, mama, it's me, Chicho*.  (More giggles) "It's me" (and then he sealed his confirmation with a kiss).

Now I know that he knows!!

*Chicho is the nickname we gave him a long time ago. It doesn't mean anything-just a funny version of blending "chico-boy" and "chiquito-little".  He knows to refer to himself as both Chicho and Salvatore.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Years of Tears

I had the TV on to the Hope for Haiti Now telethon while I played, cooked and cleaned with Salvatore.  The images are devastating and I am really emotional when I see the children's faces.  I tuned most of it out as I went about my evening, thinking of my own private things.  Then I heard one of my favorite songs "Hallelujah" sung by Justin Timberlake.  Actually, a man named Leonard Cohen first wrote it, but my favorite version is from a man named Jeff Buckley (died at age 27 while swimming in a river with his friends), off of his 1994 "Grace" album.  If you have never heard of the song or Jeff Buckley singing it, then you have not yet heard an angel sing. Hearing the song that has been burned into my heart gave me a greater sense of peace, sadness, understanding and despair-all at the same time.  Today is the third year anniversary of a tragically sad day in the life of my good friend and tomorrow is the 4 year anniversary of losing David's sister, Lula (Lourdes). So, maybe all of the rain this week is symbolic of how we have been feeling inside, knowing we have to deal with this day all over again.  If only it could really wash it all away...  

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Making Lasagna

Salvatore took a great nap today, so I started to make lasagna. He woke up and wanted to help me, so I put him on the counter and we got to work. He helped me stir the eggs and ricotta cheese, pulled each lasagne noodle out of the box, and sprinkled all of the Italian cheese between each layer. He loved the Italian cheese so much, he just helped himself to the bag.

OK Teachers...What is Wrong With This?

Please look carefully, there is a big mistake here. Comment if you can find it!

Am I Too Blonde...

or does this not make sense to you either?

"May Not Contain California Eggs"

Yet, they are "California Ranch" eggs?!?! I must be too blonde to get it!

Monday, January 18, 2010

25 months

Salvatore is 25 months old.  I know that after 2 years, most people only count by years and no longer by months.  But early 2 is different from an almost 3 year old.  Here are his stats:  35" tall and weighs 27.5 lbs.  He is 55% for height and 20% for weight (been that way since the day he was born).  He walks, skips, runs, and jumps with the greatest of ease.  He even walks backwards and makes the "Beep-beep-Beep" sound of a semi in reverse.  He sleeps well, eats well, loves his bath time, uses good manners 90% of the time, and loves to draw and color in his coloring books.  He entertains himself with cars and trains all day and still loves to watch Cars or Finding Nemo with his afternoon bottle.  Yes, he still drinks from a bottle and also from every kind of cup imaginable.  He starts conversations with you, can hold one with you and loves to talk on the phone with you.  He speaks more Spanish than English and will often translate for my dad if he doesn't understand what he is saying.  He always pats my belly and gives his little sister kisses.  He is currently fascinated with "big-grande" and "little-chiquito" and can easily tell the difference in many things.  He still knows his alphabet and can read some words easily when he sees them.  He can count to 20 in Spanish and 14 in English.  He asks many questions all day long and still shouts with delight when he sees anything interesting out of the car windows (trucks, train tracks, buses, airplanes, helicopters, trees, birds on a wire, etc.)  He loves shopping at Cost-Co because he knows they have pizza, samples, bikes, toys, and he politely asks the door checker to draw a "happy face" on the back of our receipt when we leave and they always do!  He washes his body each night in the bath and requests to brush his teeth at least 3 times each day.  He prays before he eats and before he goes to sleep.  Meltdowns are rare, but big when they happen.  He is our joy and delight and we thank God daily for him.  So grateful to have had all of this time with him before our little girl arrives.  

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Devil Inside...

...of Salvatore came out tonight and this poor banana didn't survive.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Shalimar's Secret

How cute does he look sitting in this bag?  He is our greatest gift!

Go Speed Racer

One day, he will really have a license and a car of his own. But for now, I will cherish the times that he plays games and uses his imagination.  I also love the fact that I don't yet have to actually put money in the machines for him to enjoy himself...all of this fun and excitement was totally free!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Empty Nest

My busy nest is children have left, but David's family did and we miss them very much!  What a wonderful time we all spent together and how nice for them to deeply bond with their nieto (grandson).  Great memories from this visit include:  bowling, cooking, Long Beach, Griffith Observatory, Dave and Buster's, Christmas Eve dinner, shopping, and more shopping.  Surprises: coming home exhausted one day to find our hallway and bathroom doors perfectly painted, how much Spanish Salvatore learned, and coming home on Thursday, December 17th so I could go to my ultrasound to find out boy or girl and seeing them greeting me at the door, all dressed and ready to go with me, and their faces when they saw their first ultrasound ever of my baby girl!  We all cried!  Please backtrack and read my post from Dec. 12, titled Suegros-I typed it last night but it posted in December and not in January.  I love my husband and his family and he loves mine!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Richman Waters Run Deep

About 5 years ago, I was ready to move from teaching at a private school to teaching at a public school.  I was tired from working two jobs and I needed to earn more money to keep the home I just bought.  Plus, I desperately wanted to use my degree in Mexican-American Studies and went searching for a new fit.  With help from my credential professors, Gina Glaudini's recommendation, and a whim Open House visit with my dad, I set my sights on Richman Elementary.  My good friend Patty was also searching for a new school and we were lucky to get hired together!  In my 4 years, I have had 4 great classes, approximately 88 great students, two awesome grade-level teams, 2 talented principals, and 4 good vice-principals.  What more could a person ask for?  Mommy friends.  Good mommy friends.  About 3 years ago, 5 of us teachers at Richman were getting pregnant or ready to become pregnant.  This wonderful bond started with the 5 of us and has now extended to many more.  In order of baby birth, Jessica (had Milan), Jennifer (had Taylor), me (had Salvatore), Sara (had Molly and 5 year old Jack), and Ana (had Mia) all quickly bonded with wonderful playdates, started by Sara, to share the joys and trials of motherhood.  Experienced mothers like Gina, Tiffany, Pam, Susan and Melodie (had Reece) have also shared in all of our experiences as well, and since we have introduced Stephanie (had Andre), Jennifer again (had twins Jacob and Madison), Gaby (had Cruz), Jennifer B. (had Sophie), Ivy (had Audrey), and Jane (had Isabel).  It was always a joke that you should not drink the water at Richman, unless you wanted a baby.  Well, Ana drank again (having Daniel this Thursday), Tracy (having a boy in March), Jessica again (having Dean in March), I drank again (having a little girl in early May), and Stephanie drank again (having a baby in late June).  I knew when I first started at Richman that something wonderful was going to happen to me.  I was blessed to make a new family and to share that growing family with all of the wonderful people at Richman.  Really, really blessed!  

Friday, January 8, 2010

Pure Joy

Salvatore ate a huge dinner tonight, so he enjoyed some vanilla ice cream! He made this face after every bite!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Good Golly Miss Molly

Salvatore has a special friend named Molly, and today is her 2nd birthday!  We have shared many special times and we look forward to many, many more!  Happy birthday to a bright, sweet girl!

Playing in Molly's backyard
Playing in Salvatore's room
Reading (well, only she is)
Baby playdate Summer 08
Their first meeting

Monday, January 4, 2010

My First and Last...

...concerts were Madonna in 1987 (thanks mom!) and Elton John last summer in Vegas (thanks David!).  I love music and have always loved concerts and have seen many in between 87-08, like Dave Matthews, Sade, Tori Amos, Van Morrison, Lenny Kravitz, and Brooks and Dunn.  There are many more whom I wish to see live in concert.  Friends and family, keep your eyes and ears open so we can go!!!!!!!!!!!
In no particular order, I wish to see:
1.  Lady Ga-Ga (I know, but I like her!)
2. Prince
3. George Michael
4. Fleetwood Mac
5. Paul Simon
6.  Garth Brooks
7.  Tom Petty
8. Michael Buble
9. David Gray ( You Tube "This Year's Love (Live)" if you have never heard of David Gray)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy Birthday Aurora

My sweet cousin, Aurora, turns 16 on Jan. 4th, and we had a fun surprise party for her tonight!  It was wonderful to plan and be a part of something special for her because she is truly so special.  She is the proof that great parenting,  a good education, and sports can really help make all of your dreams come true.  Aurora, and her sister Adria, have always been special to me and I have loved watching them grow from sweet little girls into nice young women.  Great job Aunt Christy and Uncle Steve.  Your love for your girls is awesome!

Cousin Aurora and Cousin Adria
Salvatore and I eating cake
Sita, Fred, and Dad
Birthday girl and little sis
Birthday girl and Salvatore

Friday, January 1, 2010

My 5 Month Belly

Here I am at 5 months!  This is my 20th week, so I am half way there. Sometimes my belly looks bigger, and other times smaller, depending on her position I guess.  I am still feeling very nauseous and not much helps. Unfairly, I am still gaining weight like a champ, though I can barely keep much down.  And now I have heartburn after most meals. I feel her moving a lot now, mostly at night, just like Salvatore.  We are still trying to decide on a name and we wonder each day if she will take after Salvatore and the Keysor side, or favor the Liconas this time with black curly hair and dark eyes.  Since she is due in May, we will share the same sign, Taurus.  Maybe she will come on Mother's Day this year!  Regardless, I love being with child and can't wait to meet her this Spring!!!

Happy New Year 2010

Happy New Year from the Liconas to you!!!