Eat this!

QUICKIE:  Vincenzo, pointing to some mylar balloons: “What are those for, Mommy?”  Me: “You would buy those on a holiday or birthday or maybe if you wanted to show someone how much you loved them.”  Vincenzo: “You love me a whole lot, Mommy!!”  Yup.  He got one.
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I hate all of you!  I totally gave you the opportunity to choose to eat poo on my blog this week and NO ONE took the bait.  I at least have respect for those who chose an option (yes, A was the Cocoa Puff), but everyone else?  This is for you:

(The fun really starts around 27 seconds.  The commentary at the end is priceless, too.)

 

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Bready-crumby, lemony, shrimpy thing
Baked penne with prosciutto
Asparagus with fried sage

Feeling poopy

QUICKIE: Vincenzo, after a session on the toilet: “That’s a big poop.”  Me: *sounds of agreement*  Vincenzo: “That’s a mommy-sized poop!”
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So my cat has this problem with dingleberries.  A week ago I found what looked like another cat dingle on my floor, but upon tasting it found it to be, in fact, a Cocoa Puff.  It was quite a pleasant surprise.

Here’s the challenge for you, readers: which one of these would you eat and which one would you toss?

Option A:

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Option B:

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P.S. It frightens me that I’ve actually opened a picture of cat poo in my photo editing program so that I could adjust the lighting and shadows.

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Out again!

What has two lips and goes "enh enh?"**

QUICKIE: Vincenzo’s pirate class is really paying off.  He now refers to a certain rectangular, hard candy as “Jolly Rogers.”
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We went to the tulip festival about an hour away this weekend.  I loved it; Kevin hated it; Vincenzo thought it was a total bust.  It’s not entirely the Tulip Festival’s fault.  On the way up there, Vincenzo asked, “So are we going to see lots of tools at the Tool Festival?”  We had to have a discussion about the meaning of “major letdown” for the second time this week.*

Oh, there was one bright spot in the day that Vincenzo perked up for.  It was the one segment of the day when he was not saying either “I want to go home now!” or “ENNH!  ENNH!  ENNH!”

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What you don’t see is the small crowd of people who stopped short of my camera’s view so that they wouldn’t ruin my picture of the honeybucket truck.

Being the terribly misguided parent that I am, I thought it would be nice to get a nice picture of my son with the tulips.  Vincenzo acted like his soul was being stolen.  I tried to fake him out by telling him I was taking pictures of the flowers, but his soul could sense what was happening and he took preventative measures:

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Oh well; at least it’s a nice picture of my husband’s crotch.  What gets me is that I saw tons of other families and kids there, and their kids were all standing among the tulips, smiling and frolicking.  What gives?

Anyway, at least the tulips don’t harbor the same levels of resentment and anger toward me that will later show up in relationship problems and unhealthy methods of self-medication.

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WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Out to Thai Ginger

*The first discussion came after we asked Vincenzo if he wanted to walk through the forest near our house.  He was giddy with excitement, and I was so happy that he was showing some interest in the outdoors.  All the way there he kept talking about rollercoasters, and 100 yards into the forest it was obvious this was not what he signed up for.  Turns out he was thinking we were going to an amusement park called Enchanted Forest that’s about an hour from our house and which we pointed out to him once, a year ago.

**Please tell me you get the title now?  It took a lot out of me to think of that.

It’s Saturday. You can go home now.

I always feel bad for the 26 people who read my blog on the weekend, as I rarely post on Saturday/Sunday, so here are a few pictures from the past month.  Not funny, but at least you feel like you got something for logging on today.  Consider it the prize in your cereal box.

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I know I make fun of Vincenzo a lot on this blog, so now at least there is some proof that I do take a few pictures of him without the intent to embarrass.  🙂

Got milk?

QUICKIE: When the babysitter came over this week, I saw Vincenzo hold out an imaginary piece of paper and tell him, “Here are the directions on how to play the turtle game.”
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Thank you all for your warm sentiments yesterday.  I had been expecting it to be a fun, cheerful day of celebration because that’s how things usually go with Angelo, so I was surprised when I kept busting into tears throughout the day.  I have no problem with crying so it didn’t bother me.  It actually felt good to know that I’m still in touch enough with my baby I can recall all the emotions of his life and death along with the events of them.

After Angelo was born, I forewent pain killers in order to pump and donate milk to a lactation center.  They later sent me this lovely thank-you gift:

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And I thought I had a warped sense of humor!  It reminds me of Vincenzo’s first birthday, themed “Vincenzo’s favorites.”  As he was a boob junkie at the time, I made a tres leches cake for dessert–and I didn’t tell a soul was the third milk was.

WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Teriyaki chicken with peanut dipping sauce
Salad
Lemony angel food cake with berry compote

Happy birthday, angel baby!

Today is Angelo’s first birthday.  We’re celebrating it with an angel hair frittata and angel food cake, and will go to the tulip festival this weekend.  We were gifted with so many white tulips when he was born that I can’t help but think of him when I see tulips!  I wasn’t a blogger a year ago, so I’ll help you understand what it was like to give birth to a stillborn baby by sharing some journal entries from a year ago.

Here’s what I wrote the day before I gave birth:

April 22, 2008

I’m not sure when Angelo’s kicks actually started slowing down. I might have felt him move a couple times on Saturday, then nothing on Sunday. We went to the doctor on Monday and I started crying before the ultrasound even popped up on the screen. I knew my baby was gone. It was so quiet in that room, and even though an ultrasound doesn’t usually make any noise anyway it was quieter than it had ever been. On all the past appointments the ultrasoundist always laughed at how squirmy Angelo was and half the pictures would turn out blurry. Now there was just a baby floating, hand and foot up by his head. I think his face looked different—before I had always seen the hint of a smile or a joke on his lips, I swear, but yesterday he was expressionless.

The next afternoon I went to the OB’s to get induced.  I had this conversation with Vincenzo:

V: You’re going to the doctor’s so they can build Angelo, right?
Me: Honey, the doctors can’t fix Angelo.
V: [giving a yelp] But they need to fix him because he died!
Me: Baby, even doctors can’t fix someone who dies.
V: [hugging me] Then being dead is a very, very bad thing.
Me: Vincenzo, if you died then yes it would be very sad.  But you were meant to live for a long, long time.  This was exactly how Angelo’s life was supposed to be.  It’s right for him.

And the journal from the following day:

Our nurse wrapped Angelo in a blanket and gave him to me and he was so warm, so precious. And so skinny!  He did look like a T13 baby, with the wide nose and flat ears. His sixth fingers and toes were kind of crazy—and precious all the same. His fingers tapered to delicate ends, each with a perfect fingernail on it. At one point his tiny fist was resting on his face in a way that turned the corner of his mouth upward and I saw what a beautiful smile he would have had. The tiniest bit mischievous, like his older brother’s. We never saw his eyes but I know they were blue like Kevin’s and mine.

Dad and Wendy showed up first and Wendy was so genuine, exclaiming over and over again, “He’s so beautiful.” Michelle and Mom came next. Mom was the perfect Grammy, speaking softly to him, and she kissed his forehead—something I hadn’t brought myself to do yet. When she gave Angelo back to me I kissed him over and over again. I kept my hand cradled around his head to remember the size of it, the realness of it, and to give him back some of my warmth. The mood of the whole room was bright and cheery, as it should be at any birth. Dad came last and commented, “He looks just like an angel.”

Our last half hour with Angelo’s body was intensely precious. The family and nurses left while I held Angelo, and Kevin and I cried a lifetime of tears without saying anything. I told our boy what a big deal he was and what a difference he had made in the world. I told him he made Vincenzo into a big brother, and he will always have that. I said we did our best to care for him while he was alive and now that he is dead we will do our best to care for his memory.

And finally we were ready. The nurse set Angelo’s body in a bassinet and covered him gently with blankets. I said, “I love you baby. I love you so, so much,” and she wheeled him away from us. I have done my best not to think of his body beyond that point. I think of him only in my arms.

Thank you all for helping me keep Angelo’s memory alive.  He had such a special, unique place in this world and he definitely left it a changed place.

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*When we found out about Angelo’s T13, we were told of a website called “Now I Lay me Down to Sleep”  that hooks up professional photographers with people in our situation.  We ended up with Jennifer of Bella’s Image Photography, who is an amazing photographer and also now a friend of the family.  Thanks again, Jen!

A picture is worth 1,000 posts

QUICKIE: Vincenzo, after I tossed a pair of his undies on his head: “Mom, we don’t throw my undies on people’s heads because my poopy bottom has been in them all day.”
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I somehow accidentally zoomed in my computer screen so everything looks like this now.  The Internet seems like an elementary school primer and I am confused by the lack of rhyme and customary set of multiple choice questions that should come at the end of everything I read.  If you or your friends (Dick and Jane, I presume) know how to fix this problem, please send help.  K thx bye.

We now return to our normal blog posting.  Here are a few shots from around the house this past week; hopefully one or two will make you smile.

Vincenzo, pointing his shooter at the TV during a Muppets pirate movie.  He stood there for about 1/2 an hour, then slowly backed his way to the couch, only to jump up and resume position during the next sword fight.

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Vincenzo’s new snail watering can.  Something about it seems not right, but I can’t quite figure it out…
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I asked Vincenzo to help me make a chore list on Monday.  He had two suggestions…can you tell which ones?

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Kevin’s new mouthwash claims to have “6 Benefits in One!” but I’m claiming that because it’s purple, it’s just 6 kinds of wrong.

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This is from our trip to the zoo.  I like it because it appears some kid is beating the peacock with a stick.

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Vincenzo, missing the mark in trying to look cool.  (They’re upside-down.)
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WHAT’S COOKIN’ 2NITE:
Breakfast for dinner!!