Monday, December 28, 2009

2009 Meme

I swiped this from the fabulous Michelle at Bleeding Espresso. I did not do this in 2008 (for obvious reasons) so I am happy to revisit this meme and reflect on what has been an exciting and eventful year. To see what I did in 2007 click here.

1. What did you do in 2009 that you’d never done before? Participate in the Kids Lit Klub at Cabrini where I worked with 3 amazing women to create a reading camp from start to finish. Work in an elementary school as a reading specialist. Be a mom.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I think the only "resolution" I made was to be the best mom possible to my son - hopefully I have done this but you never know.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? So many babies so little time...the short list of new babies...Mackenzie, Isabella, Booker, Jack, Olivia (beautiful niece #1), Naomi (beautiful niece #2), Taylor (beautiful niece #3), Ethan (beautiful nephew)...I am sure there are more but who can keep track!

4. Did anyone close to you die? Not this year, but my friend Dave passed away in Sept of 2008 after a 9 m0nth battle with Melanoma. I think of him and his family often.

5. What countries did you visit? Italy

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009? My teaching certification and a job!

7. What dates from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? Jan 4 - my friend Suzie went into labor while watching the Eagles game at her parents house. April 17 - had to take Simon to the Emergency Room in the middle of the night because he fell out of his carseat. he had to have a cat scan and it was awful. May 15 - my niece Olivia was born. Oct 12 - my first day student teaching!

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Passing all my Praxis tests on the first try!

9. What was your biggest failure? I wish I had been able to breast feed Simon longer - but 5 months is great.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Not that I can recall. Had surgery on my gums which was heinous but I am lucky to have been healthy. Still have high blood pressure, despite my weight loss.

11. What was the best thing you bought? Well my mom bought it for me but my Snuggie. There, I said it.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration? My beautiful son who has learned to walk at 12 months!

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed? JD our cat...bad bad bad kitty likes to poop and pee in our basement but not in his litter box which is in the basement.

14. Where did most of your money go? Our mortgage, our bills, the last of my grad school classes. Oh yeah, and formula, diapers, etc.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about? Taking Simon to Italy to meet Nonna Linda!

16. What song will always remind you of 2009? I Gotta Feelin by the Black Eyed Peas....Simon loves this song and dances to it all the time.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: (a) happier or sadder? (b) thinner or fatter? (c) richer or poorer? Happier (getting more sleep!), thinner (like by 65lbs!), the same...still need to find a job.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of? At the beginning of the year...sleep!

19. What do you wish you’d done less of? Second guessing my parenting skills.

20. How did you spend Christmas? Dad, Uncle, Dan, Simon and I had dinner at our house. Mom was in Italy and we missed her.

21. Did you fall in love in 2009? Yes, with Stacy's Simply Naked Pita Chips...I am eating some right now!

22. What was your favorite TV program? Glee!!! Makes me so happy!

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year? I try not to be a hater.

24. What was the best book you read? The Things They Carried by Tom O'Brien. Not my usual cup of tea but a really moving book.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery? The Laurie Berkner Band - Simon loves her and so do I!

27. What did you want and not get? A paying job.

28. What was your favorite film of this year? Duh, New Moon :)

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you? I was 36 and I was in class that night so I didn't do anything. Dan took me to dinner later that week. (this was the same thing as 2007...weird)

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying? Getting paid for my student teaching - but I love it so I cannot complain.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009? It fits? I'll wear it!

32. What kept you sane? My son's smile and giggles.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most? My favorite vampire - Robert Pattinson

34. What political issue stirred you the most? Clean water is a basic human right.

35. Who did you miss? All my DC ladies...I still miss you greatly!

36. Who was the best new person you met? Karen, my cooperating teacher

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009. No matter how bleak life seems, there is always someone who is worse off than you - so get over it!

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year. Still the same as 2007. "In dreams begin responsibilities" - U2, Acrobat My dream was to have a family of my own...and with that came all my responsibilities.

How did you all fair in 2009? Post a comment if you decided to do a year end review so I can read it as well.

I have high hopes for 2010 so bring it on peeps!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Happy (Belated) B-day Spy!

On December1, my beautiful baby boy turned 1. I cannot believe that a year has passed since we checked into the hospital and our son arrived. What an incredible year it has been. Watching our son grow from a helpless little bundle to a free spirited, lovable, snugly little boy has been amazing. We are so excited for all the fun things he has in store for us. We love you baby! Happy Birthday!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

What do you do when you are thirsty?

Run to your sink to grab a glass of water? Go to the water cooler at work and refill your water bottle? There are so many people in our world, specifically Africa, that do not have such a simple but important luxury.

During this time of giving thanks, I am asking my readers to become a fan of Chase Community Giving on Facebook. Once you do this you can vote for the African Well Fund - the winner receives $25,000 towards their charity. With this money the AWF can fund an entire water and sanitation project, which depending on the country, can service thousands of people in villages that have no access to clean water.

Click on the link above to become a fan and vote. It will only take a few seconds...and in doing do you can change the lives of thousands of men, women and children who lack basic yet life saving access to clean water.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

11 months young

Oh where o where has the time gone? My little man was 11 months old on Sunday. In a few short weeks we will be celebrating his 1st birthday...unbelievable. I love you peeper!

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Lil' Pumpkin - 10 months

Spy was 10 months old this week. Here we are at Linvilla Orchards with cousins Sofia and Olivia, Zia Lisa, Nonna Maria and Nonno Mario and our good friend Leandro. Simon was wary at first and then really had fun feeling all the pumpkin stems...what can I say...he is very tactile!

I cannot believe that in a few short months we will be celebrating his first birthday! Crazy!!! He is a super fast crawler and loves to pull himself up and then let go...soon he will be walking and then all the fun will begin. He has 3 teeth and 3 more breaking it has been a rough past couple of nights but we love him to pieces anyway!

With Nonno/a

The awesome Halloween display.

Very tactile my son.

Sofia has fun on the playground.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A lil' bit o' this n a lil' bit o' that

Since I have lost my ability to focus on any one thing for more than a period of 5 minutes, I have decided to post a bunch of blurbs about what is going on with me. You know for the 2 of you who still tune in to read this blog.

Whet to Fogo de Chao Sunday night and had a very un-Weight Watchers friendly dinner. Seriously, it was a crazy meat-a-licious meal. If you like meat I highly recommend the experience.

Speaking of Weight Watchers, I joined when I got back from Italy and have lost 11.2lbs in 6 weeks. I feel pretty awesome, better than I have in months. Now if only I can convince Spy to sleep through the night and I would feel 100%.

I took the Praxis II on Sept. 12. I need to pass it in order to student teach. I find out the results on Oct. 9 and I am supposed to start student teaching on Oct. 12. Talk about cutting it close and waiting until the last minute. Yeah, that is how I roll. If I fail...well I have to take it again in Nov and I student teach in Jan. Sigh.

Simon is crawling now, Lord help us all. He also has 3 teeth with at least 2 more on the way. He is still not sleeping through the night and hence I am not sleeping through the night either. If I do end up student teaching there are going to have to be some changes in our household with regards to who gets up to get Simon in the middle of the night. Yes, I am talking to you, D.

I need a mani/pedi in the worst way. My feet look like hooves. As usual, I have no time for this.

I am crazily looking forward to the next movie in the Twilight Saga: New Moon. Yes, I know it is a movie for teenagers. No, I do not care. The trailer made me squeal like a school girl at a Hot Topic meet and greet which by the way I have never been too in case you were wondering.

Finally, today is our 2 year anniversary. I cannot believe 2 years have gone by so quickly.

Happy Anniversary Baby!

Monday, September 14, 2009

The End of an Era

Orry Main. Johnny Castle. Vida Boheme.
Patrick Swayze
You will be missed.

Friday, September 04, 2009

9 months old

They say time flies when you are having fun...where have the last 9 months gone? Our little monkey is growing like a weed. He has two perfect teeth in this perfect mouth. He is almost crawling forward...definitely crawling backwards and can pull himself up in his crib. Sigh. Soon he will be asking for the keys to the car...what on earth will I do then?

Thursday, September 03, 2009

A few days late but...

Happy 40th Anniversary Mom and Dad!!!

May you enjoy 40 more years of memories and happiness!

Friday, August 28, 2009

4 generations

This last trip to Italy was memorable in so many ways. However, I think I can say that seeing my Nonna Linda enjoy her great-grandchildren was probably the best part of my vacation. Here we are: my brother, my sister-in-law, my two beautiful nieces, my mom, me, my husband and my son all surrounding my Nonna. 4 generations of D'Angelo/DiFilippo/Palumbi blood...I can only hope that we can continue this tradition for many years to come!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

8 months old

I was unable to post a 7 month picture of Simon since we left for Italy on July 1st. So here is our big boy - all grown up - 8 months old - rooting for the Phillies and doing his best crawl is only a matter of time before he is on the move!

Clearly he is the spitting image of my hubby and looks nothing like me at all. Honestly it is a bit of a disappointment that my genes were recessive in this always wonder what physical traits you will pass on...sigh...well I guess at some point we will have to give it another go. Just not yet.

Simon had a wonderful time in Italia. He was very much in love with is great-grandmother Nonna Linda and smiled every time he saw her. He was wonderful on the plane - both ways - and managed to charm the air hostesses every time the passed our row. He really is such a happy and fun baby but he is also very active that I find that I have a hard time keeping up. Probably because I am the laziest person I know. Go figure I would have a hyper baby!

We are in the process of uploading and sorting our many pics from Italy most of which are of Simon. He had his first visit to the beach and dipped his feet into the Adriatic. He met and visited with lots of his cousins. He had a blast with Sofia and Olivia once they arrived. Once the pics are sorted I will post them and some of my musings and observations from my trip.

A presto!

Monday, August 10, 2009

We're back!

After 5 weeks in my beloved Italia we are back home. Pics and stories to come....if Simon will give me enough time to upload all the photos that is!

A preview of what is to come...

The Yeagers in Castelli - Photo by Lisa Palumbi

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Almost there

I apologize to the 3 of you who still read my blog. The last 6 weeks have been a whirlwind of grad school classes, interrupted sleep and Kids Literacy Klub (KLK). I am happy to say that as of tonight I have taken my last graduate class. There are only 3 more days of KLK left. On Wed night we will be on a plane to Italy. Hooray!

The only crappy thing is that I found out today - due to some major mis-communication on the part of me and my adviser - that I have one last Praxis test to take before I am legally allowed to student teach in the state of PA.

Um, WTF? The next testing date is July 25 which I cannot make since I will be in Italy. I will have to register for the Sept 12 test (from Italy btw) the results of which I will get 4 weeks later. So if I am lucky and pass on the first try ONLY THEN can I student teach. By then it will be mid October so I am not even sure it will be feasable which means I will have to push it off until January. I am seriously pissed off.

The beauty of this whole clusterf**k is that I just happened to have a conversation with one of my colleagues today which sparked this whole thing...if I had not talked to her I would not have known I had missed this major requirement. I mean seriously...there is a woman who is in charge of our student teaching assignments. She is supposed to make sure our portolios are complete before she gives us the assignments. When was she planning on letting me know that my file was incomplete?!?!?! Sigh.

Anyway after my quasi nervous breakdown this afternoon I realized that everything happens for a reason so who knows...maybe this will all be a good thing, right?

So I apologize for being such an absent blogger. Again I leave on Wed so it is possible that this will be my last post until August. Unless I find an awesome internet cafe and some free time to update you on my travels.

So until then enjoy your summers, stay safe, wear sunscreen and have a good time!!!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

6 months

It is hard to believe that half a year has gone by since our little SPY was born. He has changed and grown so much in just 6 months...what an adventure! We had our well-baby visit today and the doctor was so please with his progress. He is measuring in the 81% for both height (27.5 inches) and weight (19.9 lbs). He is hitting all of his milestones and then some! He is also teething which has made it interesting for me as I am the one who gets up with him at night...oh joy...but as they say...this too shall pass! Here are some more recent pics of my little buggie. Enjoy!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Our newest addition

A great super huge welcome to Olivia Maria Palumbi! My sweet niece arrived in the morning on Friday May 15 weighing in at 7lbs 3oz. Big sister Sofia, Mommy and Daddy are all excited for her arrival. Zia Paola is excited to spoil another little princess. Congratulation to everyone!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Mommy Lens

I never truly realized how much having my own child would color the way I look at the world.

A few years back, my new book club decided to read the Kite Runner. I had already read the book and loved it so I was excited to talk about it with new people. Before the meeting I asked my SIL about it and she admitted that she only read half the book. "I could not get past that one know...where the little boy gets attacked," she said to me. "I think it is because I have two sons and all I can think about is them when I read the book." "Sure," I said, "that makes sense to me." But in my head I thought, how silly of her. The book is so good...she is missing out on a sad but great story.

I think about this conversation a lot lately. Now that Simon is here I see everything through Mommy colored glasses. A commercial for Save the Children unleashes uncontrollable sobs. Suddenly, the little boy on the screen has my son's face and his suffering is unbearable. I hear a story about kids bringing guns to school on the news. My mind immediately flashes to Simon in middle school, sitting at his desk, unaware that the kid next to him has a gun in his locker. My heart skips a beat at the thought of him in peril.

Not all of this is gloom and doom. The melody of the Jack and Jill truck has me daydreaming of summers to come, Simon's face all dirty with melted ice cream and a huge satisfied smile. I see the signs for Phillies Baseball Camp at Upper Merion and I envision my son in his baseball uniform sliding into home plate. Prom season has me wondering about the person my son will take to prom...what will this person be like? Will Dan and I approve?

This Mommy Vision has taken me by surprise. I knew things would change and it is only logical that my world view would change as well...but I am still just amazed at how different the everything looks to me now. Amazed yet pleased. I would not change my mommy glasses for the world.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

5 months

OK so I am late with this picture...and it was taken this weekend so it is more like 5 months and 1 week but frankly with as sleep deprived as I am I am thankful I am even posting right now!

All dressed up for a cocktail party we went to this weekend. He is getting so big and is blossoming into a beautiful little boy. He rolled over today (twice) and his talking up a storm, reaching for objects in mommy's hand and is definitely experiencing stranger anxiety - oh joy!

Today was my first Mother's Day and it was great. Simon & Daddy let me sleep in until 11 am and Simon is getting my car detailed as one of my gifts. As crazy as it sounds I am so excited for this as my car is a pit and it makes me anxious to drive it as dirty as it is right now. My how my priorities have changed! He also got me a coupon for a mani/pedi, lunch and a movie with my SIL for sometime in the future. She is due with bambino #2 on Friday so I am sure that at some point this summer - when we all return from Italia - Lisa and I will cash in our coupons for some pampering, good food and a movie...when does New Moon come out again? Just kidding!

I hope everyone enjoyed a fantastic Mother's Day!!!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The Brightest Star in the Sky

Yay!!! My most favorite of authors, Marian Keyes, has finished her latest book, The Brightest Star in the Sky. Unfortunately for us in the US it will not be released here until Jan 2010. You lucky folks in Ireland and the UK get it in October.

For those of you that have never read her out immediately and get a copy of Watermelon her first novel. It is so freaking funny. I promise you will be hooked. It makes for perfect summer reading.

Finally...something fantastic to look forward to in the new year!!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Organize to Exercise

Some of you may know about my super cool, extra fit cousin Toni, personal trainer extraodrinaire.

Click here to read an article she just recently wrote about fitting exercise into your lifestyle.

You can also go to her website Training With Toni to sign up for her personalized fitness videos - her 3 Minute Crush Program is amazin and gets results!!!

Remember June (and bathing suit weather) is just around the corner...YIKES!!!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Every generation has a chance to change the world

Only 10 days left to make a donation to the 7th Annual African Well Fund Build a Well for Bono's Birthday Fundraiser.

Click here to donate.

I know that times are tough financially but the next time you drink a glass of water think about how many people do not have access to such simple thing...a sad yet shocking reality for so many less fortunate than us.

As U2 says, "Every generation has a chance to change the world." Let our generation be responsible for providing clean water to those who need it.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Quick updates

Since I find that I have not time to write meaningful posts...I have ideas all the time just no time to actually write about them...I figured I would try to do some quick jot updates every now and again so people don't think I am dead.

Grad school still math course especially. I think this teacher may be the worst professor I have ever had and I will be lucky to get an A...grrrr.

Simon attended his first story hour at the library. We sang songs, listened to stories and watched puppets perform. I think he liked it - he was probably just happy to be out of our house and surrounded by people other than myself. I met some moms in the neighborhood and am looking forward to hanging out at the play ground after story time next week.

Simon got his passport today...Italia here we come!

I am really loving Lost this season...I look forward to watching each episode on Thursday mornings while Simon sleeps on my pathetic am I?

Earthquake update: My family is ok. Our house suffered some minor disruption in the form of pictures falling off the walls and knick knacks broken but nothing major. Thank goodness. Abruzzo will never be the same. My prayers and thoughts go out to everyone affected by this tragedy. The National Italian American Foundation is collecting relief funds. If you are interested in making a donation click here.

OK, I have to sleep...I am so tired and Simon will be awake before I know it.

I hope everyone is well and I hope to see or hear from most of you soon!

Ciao a tutti!

Friday, April 03, 2009

Wednesday, April 01, 2009


This post is for all those Americans living in Italy that may or may not read my blog. For those of you that have children and use formula...what brands are available in Italy? We will be heading over to Abruzzo in, Mom and Simon first...and I will have fully weened Simon by then. We supplement now with Enfamil Prosobee Formula (pictured above) which is soy based...what are the odds of us finding that there?

He will be 7 months so I am sure if we bring a can of Enfamil and mix it with the Italian stuff he will get used to it but we will be there a month so I want to be sure we have all our bases covered. I am afraid if we abruptly switch his formula it will upset his stomach.
I am excited for our trip and nervous about the logistics of travelling overseas with a 7 month old...thank goodness for my mom!!!
Today is Simon's 4 month b-day... I will post his 4 month pictures tomorrow.
Please post in my comments if you have any suggestions for formula...I will be forever grateful!!!
Mille grazie, amici!!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

14 weeks

Some pics of my little cutie...he got a new walker this week...not that his feet even touch the ground but thankfully he loves to sit in it while mommy does chores.

Here is one of my favorite pics of late - what a great smile!

Who is the World's Cutest Baby? Simon that is who!!

I cannot believe he will be 4 months old in a few weeks...where did the time go?

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Big Man Little Man

How cute are my boys? How can you not love that little smile!!!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

At a loss for words

For those that know me well, U2 is more than just a band. My love affair with Bono, Edge, Larry and Adam began at the ripe age of 10...seeing as I am going to be 36 this year this speaks volumes.

Of these four Irish lads there is one in particular that gets my blood pumping, literally with his pounding drum beats and ageless good looks. Larry Mullen Jr is definitely my favorite member of the band. He is somewhat of an enigma...until the Elevation tour where he miraculously came out of his shell and gasp! smiled on a regular basis, signed autographs and handed out drum sticks at the end of of which he handed to me one night in Dec 2001 in Tampa. But I digress.

Click below to see this truly handsome man answer questions at the Knicks game. For those who know the band like I do this is an amazing moment...he looks like he is having fun!!! As I pick up my jaw from the floor I share with you this video...enjoy.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

3 months old

Here is a picture of my little Casanova who celebrated his 3 month b-day on Sunday. It was also his Baptism so as soon as I upload pics from everyone I will post about that.

I cannot believe that 3 months have gone by since our little man came into this world. He is changing everyday and doing so many new things. He is still a bit "Simon Scissorhands" hence the mittens...his nails grow like weeds and need to be cut everyday...something I cannot do mostly because he is so squirmy.

He is almost ready to sit up on his own and talks up a storm to anyone who will listen. Last week he slept through the night 3 times - amazing! Hopefully this trend will continue as I look like a wreck and as the photos from Sunday horrifically show I still look pregnant. I do not understand this as I do fit into at least one pair of my pre-pregnancy jeans. It is a mystery. And no my feet have still not returned to their normal size...tear.

Anyhoo, I hope to get back to posting on a more regular basis...I promise to try and not make this all so will be hard!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The little things

It is amazing how something so small as fresh clean sheets and new pillows can make a night's sleep so satisfying...even if I only get to sleep 3 hours at a time.

While scrounging around in my attic for shoes that might fit me (my feet have completely changed shape since my pregnancy but that is a whole other post) I found the new king size down pillows that my mom had brought over after Simon was born. I must have put them somewhere bothersome because they wound up in the attic thanks to my husband and his borderline OCD.

So I decided to retire our pillows and try these new ones and man are they awesome. Funny how such a small change can make all the difference.

Wow, what a boring this what my life has become?

On the upside the new U2 album comes out on March 2 - what I have heard so far is a bit meh but I am reserving judgement until I can listen to the whole thing. New album = new tour. Too bad I will probably only see one show - if I am lucky - Ticketmaster is merging with Live Nation which is sure to eff up any attempts to buy tickets on my part. I am not even sure it would be worth the effort frankly - wow did I jut say that?

Grad school is heating up...I have to complete 15 hours with a student - my literacy partner. While I love doing this sort of thing it is a major pain to find someone when you are not teaching. Thankfully my friend has loaned me her son for this purpose - he is in third grade and I am meeting with him this afternoon.

Tuesday I take the Praxis I. I am scared out of my wits that I will fail the math part...I did a practice test and just barely made the passing score for PA certification. I really do not want to have to take this test more than once...sigh...we shall see what happens.

OK, that is pretty much all that is going on here. Simon is getting bigger and bigger. His baptism is March 1 so we are gearing up for that. I will post pictures afterwards. I still have to upload a bunch of the more recent pics we took...maybe I will do that tonight...if Spy behaves and goes to bed on time like a good boy.

Peace out.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

2 months old

Happy 2 month b-day Simon! I cannot believe it has been 2 months since you came into this world. You have grown so much and brought us so much happiness...the best part is that it is only going to bet better day by day! We love you peep!

Monday, January 26, 2009

My little man

I profusely apologize for not posting recently. It is hard to type proficiently with one hand when you are holding, feeding, nursing a baby in the other. People claim they do it all the time but I am not so sure.

Graduate classes started last week as well so I am also scrambling to find time to do my readings and homework. I cannot wait to finish all my courses...with a little luck I will be student teaching in the fall - yay!!!

I encourage you all to visit my SIL's blog to see some super cute pics of Simon and Sofia. They are on their way to becoming best friends :)

I leave you with a pic of my cutie pie at rest...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Cocco e Drilli

First off, Happy 2009 to all my friends and family that read my blog. I appologize for the lack of posts but my life consists of nursing, changing and burping Simon - all on repeat - and sleeping a few hours at a time when I can.

When I am awake and online I have been looking for songs to sing to Simon and I came across absolute FAVORITE Italian childrens song from 1974's Zecchino D'Oro competition. can find ANYTHING on the internet...isn't technology wonderful?!?!?. I had the 45 of this and played it constantly as a little I can sing it to my son and how awesome is the original footage from the show...seriously...cuteness is to follow. To those of you that do not speak Italian, this song is about 2 crocodiles Cocco and Drilli who are in love. One day a hunter captures Drilli (who is slower and cannot outrun the hunter) and wants to make her into a purse and a "beauty case." Cocco rallies all the other crocodiles to save his precious Drilli. Cocco is successful and he and his Drilli live happily ever after.