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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Here comes the Sun tu-ru-ru-ru

March 30th, 2010

My daughter is quietly missing her Baba. She doesn't say anything, but I can see it in her eyes...she's always looking for him.

Today we took the kids to the neighborhood park where she looked around curiously and at one point went to sit down in a corner where I tried to explain to her that this is a different place and that we will return home soon. She had a lot of fun and was soon getting sleepy under the warm sun. Actually, she was sleepy the entire time. She still had a good time playing with her cousins and especially sharing everything with Eileen...apparently one of her favorites.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Uncle and Niece, reunited

There are times when Monster looks around a crowded room looking for a familiar face, glances off of me and Mr. Oz, settles on her Uncle and she cries with her arms stretched out "Amca!!!"

This morning Amca, her dad and I left early morning for the US Consulate way before Monster was up. The entire trip we kept wondering if she will wake up and finding us gone, would she cry for us? Guess what, she didn't care! In fact, when we all did come back, she did the same skip mom and dad and get all excited for Amca thingy.

So sweet, right?

Kale Center, Istanbul

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Meet cousin and cousin and cousin....

I think I should just start naming them cousin1, cousin2, cousin3 and so on. Just like Uncle1, Uncle2, Uncle3....

(masha Allah) It's totally awesome to keep introducing Monster to a new cousin/Uncle/Aunt etc every few hours. She's having a blast and I'm happy to leave her under the watchful eye of two older cousins while I chat with sisters-in-law in the apartments upstairs.

Your weapon of choice?

March 26, 2010 9 hour flight to Istanbul, Turkey

It all started with a missed nap. The plan was to make sure Monster sleeps for at least 2 hours BEFORE going to the airport. The little twister was up and kicking when we finally located the designated gates to our plane.
Enter Weapon #1: Toddler Carrier. Use: Restraining and forcing toddler to calm down. Success rating: 100%. 10 minutes after strapping her on my back and letting her watch ground staff load baggage, she was out cold.
She was sleeping for a mere 45 minutes when boarding started and the Monster on my back began stirring. I make her run/walk/jog back and forth the waiting area and restrooms a few times before finally letting her follow her dad to our seats. We were expected at least 45 minutes of waiting in line for take off.
Enter Weapon #2: Buggle gum flavored lollipop. Use: Preoccupy toddler while ensuring a good swallowing pattern going for popping ears during take-off. Success rate: So-so (had to clean lollipop several times as Monster experimented with its sticking quality).
Then there was the time before lights out when the nerves kicked in and she wanted to catapult herself over seat backs.

Enter Weapon #3: DVD player and milk. Use: calm toddler into a state of minimal activity so they can slowly drift into dreamland. Success rate: 100%. Soon after she whined and slammed Caillou shut, rolled over as much as she could in the crammed seat and dozed off for the next 5 hours.
*Sigh* Bliss (which I utilized to read Shutter Island cover to cover...not a bad use of time!)

Hanging out with the desi dude

Wafa and Musti came over to help us in an important project: Preparing Monster for the 9 hour flight.
It wasn't much of a success, except for one revelation: When all else fails, bring out the big guns aka Caillou on a portable DVD player.
Oh and they had fun "rolling" around in the uh, laundry-bag tunnel lolz.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Away we go to the Carousal

Trips to Bryant Park have BEGUN!
For anyone living anywhere close to the 7 train, this has to be the most convenient outing of ALL. It is the MOTHER of all things to do with toddlers for moms who prefer to carry them instead of stroller-heaving up and down subway stairs.
On a weekday, the park is the perfect opportunity for the little ones to run around. Even if you are a few steps behind, they're not going to go into the street, neither is anyone going to run off with them in the midst of like 5,000 park attendents and you're not going to lose sight of them anyway because it's as flat as public spaces can get.
Ride the carousal for a couple of times, let them get dirty playing in the pebbles, or read them a few story books (bring your own or depend on whether they have hoisted out their own book trolley), have a mini lunch on the kids' tables and sun bath on the swings. The restrooms are phenomenal. I've only seen the likes in 5 star hotels, I kid you not, even the hotels don't have the machinated toilet seat plastic sleeves that refresh with the press of a button.
Meanwhile, the kiddo is getting sleepy let them chillax in a carrier, grab a coffee from Pax and hit the subway home.

Monday, March 15, 2010

When there is nothing else to do

Go driving through New Jersey! Even though I was suffering a bad bad headache the entire time, I really enjoyed our day out.
We had dinner at Sahara in Paterson, went to meet a friend in Jersey City and then took her along with us for a stroll on Washington Street in Hoboken. We were planning to actually walk by the river but it started pouring (again) by the time we were done eating and snacking at Qdoba and Ben and Jerry's.
Most importantly, I had a revelation while having tea in Paterson in the car: in our relationship, I'm the person who wouldn't ask for directions. Total stereotype smasher! Mr. O kept wanting to stop someone in the street to ask if there was a camii (masjid) nearby and I kept hindering him "He doesn't look Turkish" "You think HE goes to a camii? HHAHAHHA" "OMG, he won't even be able to hear you. Just keep driving."
Although I doubt it has anything to do with me thinking I know my navigation. God knows I SUCK at navigation. The reason I don't get lost is thanks to New York's heavy use of signage pointing which exit is North or South. The funny thing is, I like acting all superior when other people can't find the signage. But the fact is, the only reason I know where all the signs are is because I've spend hours trying to spot them like Waldo. Without them, I'd never make it home alive.
Of course, driving through NJ frustrates the hell out of me because there are NO SIGNS!!! We miss all (literally, our exits because they jump out of nowhere and nobody but the GPS Mindy knows where they are! She made us drive through this flooded ramp to Lincoln Tunnel last night that looked abandoned for centuries. Kudos to her though, because for some reason that made us skip the 30 minute wait AM 1010 was predicting there would be at Lincoln tunnel to NYC.
We never found the camii. I also, didn't find frozen yogurt in Hoboken, because I didn't want to ask anyone on Washington Street.

The calm before the storm

We enjoyed the last cloudless day before the Nor'easter hit the North East.
It's been raining practically non-stop and today when I saw a splash of sun outside the window, I literally did a double take because I couldn't believe my eyes.
All to-dos have been postponed till Wednesday this week when Monster and I will venture out again.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Hair's a fun look!

It could be the story of my life in summary: To procrastinate where action needs to be taken right away....and to act impulsively where procrastination can actually come in useful.
I think it came out rather cute anyway. The mullet is gone thank goodness. No more hair in the eyes (even though I was wishing it would grow out enough for me to tie it back with the rest of the hair...which brings me to the sad part..
I totally forgot that I actually wanted to grow out her hair...all of her hair so it can be pulled in a pony tail because she looks so cute that way. The reason I forgot: all those sticky bands and I still couldn't keep the hair out of her eyes!
There has to be a better way to go about it. She did not help me at all, all the while whacking the comb out of my hand, ducking her head down to her knees, grabbing for the scissors etc. So I log on to my email to see what the Sunnymoms have to say about best toddler friendly salons in the neighborhood and guess what? There is a thread started TODAY on finding a salon for kids and like, three reviews and suggestions.
Had I just procrastinated another 2 hours, poor Monster might have had a better hair cut. Oh well, next time. GROW HAIR GROW!

Monday, March 8, 2010

All About Meme Monday

Don't we all aim for the top, strive for the highest achievements? Supahmommy does and she does it well.

Her's is a great blog for inspiration and laughs and this weeks assignment that I'm joining: A self portrait.

"Turn the camera on yourself ... post a self-portrait ...

a portrait of yourself created by yourself

or write a thousand words* about yourself
and use Wordle to create a word picture - so cool!

*give or take a few hundred

Your choice. "

Post yours and link up on Supahmommy's blog. Here's mine:

Monster was asleep and I had two precious hours to do nothing.

Thinking about life, love and self value.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Good idea? Bad idea!

What a brilliant flash of idea it was to finally take Little Monster to see the elevated park in the city The HighLine. Although when I encountered the dry tall grass scattering the ground and freshly burst ragweed flying in the air, I mentally kicked myself in the rear. And so began my first allergy attack of the season.

But little Monster had fun, and that's what counts.

The part of Highline from 20th Street to 30th Street, under construction.
And my one moment of inspiration while basking in the sun and sneezing my brain out of my nose.
In case you're wondering, I am better now and tomorrow will be trying Zyrtec for the first time. I may have overused and abused Claritin-D as it no longer works for me.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Where did you come from?

March 3, 2010
I had to take this as proof, that spring is indeed around the corner. I hope.

Monster Takes the Subway

March 1, 2010
All I could think in my head while taking this picture was....

"Please don't lick the metal Please don't lick the metal Please don't lick the metal"