Michelle Smiles

Teaching my children to question authority, except mine.

Foto Friday


Setting this to post while we are on the road.

Sabrina hasn’t been very friendly with the camera this week so I don’t have much of her.

I think Tessa was just mad/cold/hungry because we just finished a bath.  Steve says she was protesting the bow on her head.  I believe he said she looked like a dork.

Happy Labor Day weekend!

posted under family | 18 Comments »

Show and Tell


We are headed north tomorrow.  That means many errands today to prepare for the trip.  Someone, meaning me, forgot to get the oil changed this week.  Despite the fact that I was the one who pointed out on Monday that it needed to be done.  And despite the fact that Steve offered to take my car to work with him one day and do it on his lunch hour and I waved him off insisting it wasn’t necessary.  Still waiting for my brain cells to return to pre-pregnancy pre-motherhood functioning.

I’m so excited to have brunch at my favorite place. We are very excited for everyone to meet Tessa and see Sabrina (she charms everyone who comes into contact with her).  Proud parents?  Nah.  We haven’t been home since Christmas so we are looking forward to seeing friends and family and just being home.  We will spend a little time in Ohio and then head to the Burgh for a couple of days.  Let’s hope an 8 hour car trip sans children doesn’t turn into a 14 hour car trip when 2 small children are added.


Tessa had her 1 month weight check this week.  She is up to 7lbs 12oz (1+ pound gain in 2 weeks) and the doctor was pleased.

Strangely, she slept last night from 10pm until 5am.  I’m not sure if I should celebrate or be concerned.  She shouldn’t go that many hours without eating yet but it was heavenly to sleep that many hours in a row.


Enjoy the long weekend!

posted under family | 18 Comments »

Two thumbs up


Some of you might remember this post back in May where I won a Flip Ultra Video camera on Metropolitan Mama’s website.  It took awhile for it to arrive, but my Flip arrived last week.  They sent me a cute orange one:

I remember many of you saying you had this camera but for those who don’t, let me tell you it is pretty flipping cool!**  Once upon a time, I was somewhat tech savvy.  Not to my geek husband’s standards but to the average person I seemed to know a fair amount and could figure out how to do most of what I wanted/needed to do.  Enter my geek hubby.  I got incredibly lazy once I had my own personal geek squad.  He knew things I hadn’t even imagined so I stopped figuring things out and just said “honey” when I needed something.  My tech skills are now only slightly above those who are still trying to make the clock on their DVD player stop blinking 12:00.  (Do they even put clocks on DVD players?  I originally wrote VCR but realized that was hopelessly outdated.  I think my mother is the last person in the USA with an actual VCR.  She is thinking of making the leap to a DVD player before her grandkids enter kindergarten.)  All of that to say that I’m not a complete moron but I’m either average or below average these days in making things work.

Enter my new Flip Ultra.  The only thing that caused me to ask my hubby for help was getting the battery cover open – and I blame that on exhaustion.  The directions take 30 second to read cover to cover.  I took it out of the box and without really reading the tiny instruction booklet, I started taking videos.  And I plugged it into my laptop and it automatically installed the required program to upload the videos to my computer.  Seriously, idiot proof.  I don’t think they could make it easier short of sending a little guy in the box to push the buttons for you.  If you are looking for an easy, compact (and awfully cute) video camera I have to give this one two thumbs up.

** I did receive this camera free from a give away but was in no way asked to mention or review it here.  So my opinion is honest.  I just wanted to pass on my pleasure with this product.

posted under Misc. | 8 Comments »



Am I the only one breathing a sigh of relief that the Olympics are finally over?

Every 4 years (or I guess it is 2 years now), I look forward to them.  I enjoy the opening ceremony and watch all sorts of random events that I would never waste spend time watching outside of the Olympics.  I love seeing the emotion playing across the different winners faces while they stand on that podium listening to their national anthem being played.  I feel patriotic every time I see an American win (except basketball – those over paid prima donnas seem to think they are entitled to win and act shocked when they don’t).  I love watching gymnastics (except rhythmic – I have trouble believing that is really an Olympic event), swimming (I don’t remember that many hot guys in past years…or is it because I’m old and married now?), diving, and a little track and field.  But this year I also watched soccer, rowing, field hockey, weight lifting (makes me think of that SNL skit where the lifter pulls his arms off), ping pong, badminton (can you imagine telling someone that you had an Olympic medal and then having to cop to the fact it was in badminton?), water polo (like watching 12 year old boys who need to be medicated), equestrian events (poor horses), and so much freaking volleyball I could poke my own eyes out (it was like the Saved By The Bell of the Olympics – it was always on some channel 24/7).

After about 10 days, I was done.  I had reached my saturation point with the Olympics.  But there was still a whole week to go.  Everywhere I looked while channel surfing was the Olympics.  I felt like I should watch because…well because it is the Olympics.  And invariably while we were eating dinner, my husband would turn it on and I would end up having to watch yet another volleyball match while eating my evening meal.

Then finally, blissfully, it came to an end.  Last night, I turned on the TV.  No more Olympics.  Now the freaking Democratic Convention is on 12 channels.  Oh eff.

posted under Misc. | 10 Comments »

Bringing out the big guns


Tessa has been fussier the last few days so we brought out the big guns:

That’s right.  The baby swing.  It is like a narcotic for babies.  They are powerless against its hypnotic motion.  Of course Miss Sabrina wants to help Tessa with “weeee” and push her really high so constant vigilance is necessary.

And in even happier news?  I got 8 (YES EIGHT!) blissful hours of sleep last night.  Not in a row but only broken up by 1 feeding.  Tessa fussed all evening and ate 27 times in 4 hours then passed out for 5 hours straight allowing me to do the same.  Then I got another 3 hours after that feeding.  I feel like a new woman – still a tired woman but a manageable level of tired rather than a mind numbing, energy sucking, body debilitating level of tired.  Another night of that and I might be capable of conversation without babbling and then trailing off mid sentence because something shiny distracted me.  You have no idea what 8 hours of sleep mean to a new momma.  It is better than sex.  I think – because I don’t really have a clear memory of anything before baby at this point.

posted under parenting | 11 Comments »

Cute squared


We’ll call this almost wordless Thursday.  If I was going to write anything, I would be forced to go on and on again about how flipping tired I am.  And no one wants to hear about that.  So I’ll just leave you with the cuteness of my kids.

Sabrina demonstrating what a bunny does (during a rather excruciating Bunnytown marathon viewing this morning).  “Boing, boing”

posted under family | 24 Comments »



I have been neglectful in thanking all of our friends for the lovely gifts and well wishes we have received. I took my box of thank you notes with me to the hospital but they never left my over night bag…and truth be told still haven’t. I want to at least say thank you here until I get around to writing real thank yous. Have I mentioned I am incredibly tired because of this cute face?

Because that is my excuse for just about everything these days. But I’m still receiving sweet surprises in the mail. Today I received this beautiful box from Priscilla (how inadequate do I feel that I can’t even mail out thank yous and she manages to send gifts that look this pretty?):

This package arrived from my local friend Julie while I was in the hospital:

Thanks Julie!

And is this not one of the cutest sights ever? From Alleen:

Here are the contents of Priscilla’s box (I’m too tired to even get the photos in order LOL):

The girls will look so sweet!


Thanks P! You are awesome!

And from Melanie:

And huge thanks for the other thing too!

Samantha sent this completely adorable and oh so comfy looking outfit (do they make this in mommy sizes?):

And my cousin Vanessa who is living in London with her husband and 2 children AND is pregnant sent us this sweet dress and toy along with a box loaded with fabulous hand me downs (and a book from her parents that isn’t pictured because Sabrina has squirreled it away already):

Thanks for thinking of us!

Steph sent this sweet outfit and a video for Sabrina:

Carla and E sent Sabrina this darling Big Sister shirt:

And today on my doorstep, I found these great books from (TN)Kerry. Sabrina loves books so I have already read her 2 of them while feeding Tessa this afternoon.

Steve’s mom also brought some gifts from some folks at the family company (thanks – love the cute little pink rosebuds!) and his team at work gave us some incredibly generous gift cards (thanks TMC!).

I am positive that I have forgotten several people. It isn’t because I wasn’t aware or didn’t appreciate the gift. It is more likely because I thought I already thanked you or because it is temporarily lost in the sleepy haze that envelopes my days right now. I have been overwhelmed with all of the love sent our way during this joyous time. Thanks to you all – the wonderful thoughts and wishes mean as much as the boxes of goodies.

posted under Pregnancy | 9 Comments »

Name change?


I’m considering changing the name of my blog from Michelle Smiles to Michelle Moos.  You wouldn’t know it to look at this sweet face but feeding this child is a like a full time job.

Every 2.5 – 3 hours she wants to eat.  And each meal takes 50 – 90 minutes.  I didn’t put this many hours in when I worked full time.  Meals take forever because she gets all warm and comfy while eating and falls asleep.  So I spend my time jiggling and poking and singing and readjusting her so that she will wake up and finish eating.  I keep telling myself that by 6 or 8 weeks things should get a little less constant in the feeding department.  It is hard during the day because Sabrina doesn’t understand why I am constantly tending to Tessa.  It is difficult at night because I don’t want to be up for an hour at 3am especially when both Tessa and Steve are snoring.

That is my mini-vent for the day.  I am thankful that nursing has been successful because it is something I wanted to do for a variety of reasons but I find the constant demand frustrating.

Sabrina continues to magnify her 2 year old behaviors in protest of this new little person monopolizing mommy.  However, Sabrina being a little bratty is still probably better behaved than most kids on a good day so we aren’t complaining.  Tell me this face isn’t full of attitude:

posted under parenting | 22 Comments »



The bird from Snoopy – not the avoid-the-brown-acid concert.  After Tessa gets a bath, her hair is like duck fluff.  Last night, she wiggled her feet free of her swaddling (much like momma who hates to have her feet covered except for on the coldest winter nights).  Between the hair and the tiny little feet, I thought she looked rather like Woodstock.

Last night was one of little sleep.  Today was full of crying and whining – in stereo.  Around 3:00 I started to lose it a little.  So we went for a walk around the neighborhood and played outside for a bit.  The walk put the little whiner to sleep and gave the big whiner a chance to ask “What’s that?” every 7.5 seconds rather than whine so I managed to regain my tenuous grip on sanity.  TGIF – here is hoping I have some naps in my future this weekend.

posted under parenting | 16 Comments »



I’m in survival mode here.  I’ve told Steve that my goal is to keep everyone fed and alive during the day right now…he should expect nothing more when he comes home each evening.

Yesterday, I managed to bathe everyone and did my first grocery trip with both girls (Tessa in the sling and Sabrina riding in the cart).  All of this while sporting non-maternity pants (ok they had an elastic waist but they weren’t maternity pants).  I felt quite smug until I found myself in bed at 9:30 as a result of all of that activity.

posted under family | 26 Comments »
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