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(Cheap) Summer Dates: Movies, Museums & Ikea

2014 July 23
by Saba

We really outdid ourselves these last few dates. I think we might have collectively sprained our creative muscles. The thing of it is, when you can count on one hand the number of outings you have taken without kids, anything feels luxuriously romantic.

Movies. We never go to the movies. We can’t even blame Leila. They’re just so expensive. Netflix is just so much less expensive, and convenient. Anyway, we took advantage of the first matinee and spent $18 and about two hours of our morning watching Tammy.

Nobody was in the theater.

Me: We’re the only people in here.

Ben: We could have sex.

Don’t worry. We didn’t. More people came in anyway. Also, the movie was not funny. Otherwise it was a great date.

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Museums. The last time we went to a museum together was when we were dating and I took Ben to a baseball exhibit at the MFAH. Museums and toddler are a precarious situation. I took Leila to the Menil on Sunday and left with her screaming. I think it really ruined some hipsters afternoon that day. But two weeks ago it was just we adults. Ben saw the “Do you like Downton Abby?” billboard along 59 and suggested we hit up the Houghton Hall Exhibit at the MFAH for our next date. The exhibit was nice, but being in a cool, quiet room without fear of a little girl lunging towards priceless works of art was exquisite. Yet we both left anxious to bring Leila back before the summer was over to see the Soto exhibit. That’s my kind of exhibit.

Then we went out for Bánh mì sandwiches and spring rolls afterwards. The whole date only cost us a whopping $43.

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Today our date took us to Ikea and J. Crew. Maybe it’s just us, but oftentimes our best dates are the simplest. It is nice to have time together uncluttered by the distraction of a particular activity. We picked up a plant stand to repurpose as a book holder for Leila’s room, discussed politics, freshened Ben’s wardrobe and listened to a show about losing sports teams. It was perfect.

Sleeping Beauty

2014 July 17
by Saba

Nothing sweeter.

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Potties, panties and a much-anticipated farewell to cloth

2014 July 15

I hear these stories. These stories from other moms that go something like this, “Oh yeah, my kid just started sleeping through the night at x months.” Or, “Oh yeah, my kid just kind of up and quit wanting to nurse on their own at x months.” Or, “Oh yeah, my kid just started using the potty at x months.” I don’t know why these parents share this. It’s on par with saying, “Oh yeah, we saw a unicorn the other day on our walk.” No. Seeing a unicorn is statistically more likely. It has to be.

And so, unprompted by our child, without delving into what “signs” she should be showing us (less the absence of them generate guilt), or reading anything at all, whatsoever, I took a piece of a conversation from a friend – at 2 years and 4 months we just took the diaper off and a week later she was potty trained, and we never had any accidents – and blindly attempted to replicate.

This is what happened.

Day 1: (Morning) We rolled up our Persian rugs and put all the couch cushions on our dining room table. Asked Ben to pick up some balloons because we were going to have a potty party (I saw a friend post this on FB one time, though it seemed a little bit more intentional than “go pick up some balloons”).

(Sometime late morning/noon) Show Leila balloons and swap diaper for panties.

(Sometime between that and bedtime) 1 pee in the potty (we ended up rewarding with 1 organic fruit chew because that was the only reward-like thing in our house); 1 accident

Day 2: Between nap & swim class, spent about half the day in diapers.

1 accident; 1 potty trip (pee)

Day 3: 2 ½ accidents (managed to salvage one accident and finish up in the potty, hence the ½)

3 ½ potty trips (all pee)

Day 4: 1 accident

6-7 potty trips (all pee, and at least one of these trips was unprompted)

Day 5: 2 poop accidents! I think only parents that have gone through potty training can truly appreciate the triumph of your kid choosing to poop somewhere other than their diaper. It’s like a Christmas miracle!

Day 6: Poop in the potty! (I felt like such a parenting badass.)

And only 1 accident – We finally ventured out for errands, but the big potty was “too scary” and even though she asked to “Go home. Use little potty.” I did not make it from the Whole Foods on Kirby to our home in time.

Day 7: 1 accident (Mamani & Babajoon were over and going to the potty got turned down over and over until there was no longer a need to actually go to the potty.)

Day 8-16: All potty. No accidents. (I seriously consider at least writing an e-book because honestly, how awesome and efficient are we? We did nothing, and our kid is fully potty trained.)

I’m giddy over the freedom of being done with cloth diapers!!! I am so very glad we did them, but I am just so over the constant battle against ammonia and washing them and just absolutely everything about them.

Day 17: Accident before we get in the car for a trip to Bastrop. I’m freaked out. Ben assures me that this is normal. I am not really feeling assured, like not even a little bit.

Day 18: 1-2 accidents

Day 19: 1-2 accidents

Day 20: 1-2 accidents

Day 21: 1-2 accidents

Day 22: 1-2 accidents

Day 23: 1-2 accidents

Day 24: 1-2 accidents. I start frantically searching the web for “potty training regression after 2 weeks.” Find nothing conclusive, or really even that comforting. Take away fruit chew incentive because I don’t find it comforting that instead of asking to use the potty Leila simply says, “Want fruit chew” every time she has to pee. Institute sticker chart instead with no real clear direction. Survive several meltdowns about this transition to pee + fruit chew to pee + no fruit chew. Write a blog post about the whole ordeal because if you have a blog and you’re not using it to write about your kid’s bodily functions, what are you using it to write about?

Also, I washed the car seat cover, finally.

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