Archive for the ‘The Dictator – Archives Rito’ Category

I have been dedicating a lot of time to my new blog (formatting and stuff) and it is going quite well. I really enjoy that on WordPress I can actually watch my stats and see how many hits each day I get on my site. It is encouraging to see those numbers – even though so very few people comment. I have learned that comments are like currency in the blogging world, and you need to leave some to increase traffic back to your site (which is how I have found many of my favorite blogs – through comment sections). 
I bring this up because I have realized that on Blogger I only know who reads my site by how many comments I get; which is discouraging sometimes. 
That is partially why Drowning in Laundry will be moving here soon, So for the 6 of you who comment regularly you can update your links; and for the rest of you come and see me at Cutting Back (my second blog) and leave me a note! 
Until then I leave you with photos of how housework gets done in this house. Because I know how to train men (ok, maybe just impressionable 18 month olds)…… 🙂 


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I admit I am pretty lucky, Rito is a reasonable eater – but the boy gets damn picky at times. He also is not a very good meat eater, and does not appreciate all vegi’s equally. I figured I would post some no fail recipes that I make when he is either being picky or what Dad! and I are eating for dinner is entirely inappropriate for a tiny digestive system.

Mac and Cheese with hidden Vegi’s

3/4 cup elbow macaroni – cooked
1 tablespoon butter
1 to 2 ounces milk
1/4 to 1/2 cup Velveeta cheese (depending on how you like it) – melted
1/2 cup pureed steamed butternut squash
Mix it all together. It freezes really well too, so you can have it on hand for those days you don’t want to cook.
Cheesy Tomato Pasta Stars with extra Vegi’s

1 28oz can of tomatoes with the juice
1 cup of carrots
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup to 3/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/2 to 3/4 cup pasta cooked (small pasta like stars and alphabet noodles are really easy for the kids to eat when they are little, Rito likes this on elbow macaroni now)
Melt butter in pan, add tomatoes and carrots to pan and cook at medium temperature until carrots are soft. Puree mixture and return the puree to the pan. Add the grated cheese and melt. At this point you can freeze portions of the sauces or you can freeze the sauces plus the cooked pasta. Your choice.
Baby Meatloaf
This stays really moist, so the babes can chew it easy. Rito is not the best meat eater but he likes these quite a bit, in fact I should be making him another batch!
1lb lean ground beef
1 box stovetop stuffing (we like the cornbread one here)
Moisten the stuffing according to package directions. Add the raw ground beef and mix very well. Portion into muffin tins for cooking at 350degrees for about 20 minutes (may take up to 35 minutes depending how you portion them out). This recipe also gives you a ton of room to add softened or pureed vegi’s to it, we like adding roasted red peppers or carrots and onions.

AppleSauce Muffins
These make a nice snack for your kid, and if you make the bite size small muffin tin size ones the adults love the “one bite” muffin effect.
1 cup butter, softened
2 cup sugar (1 white & 1 brown)
2 eggs
3 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
2 cups applesauce
Mix all ingredients together and fill greased muffin tins or paper baking cups 2/3 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes. Batter can be stored in refrigerator and used as needed. Freezes well too. Makes 2 dozen. NOTE: I usually make 1/4 of this recipe and it makes about 18 bite size baby muffins (those tiny muffin tins).
Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with a protein boost.

Make a regular grilled cheese sandwich, but instead of buttering the outer sides of the bread, drench it in whipped up egg (like french toast). It fires up easy and your kid will never know you are sneaking a shot of protein.
Creamy Cheese Sauce with Chicken and Broccoli
This one can be pureed as needed depending on age.
2/3 Cup edam cheese grated
1 cup milk
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp butter
1/2 cup broccoli steamed
1/4 cup chicken cooked and minced/diced/pureed to needed texture
Melt butter in a pan, add flour. Add milk and wait to thicken into a creamy sauce. Add cheese to melt. Finally add the broccoli and chicken. If needed chop or puree to a finer consistency. Freezes great and can be added to small pasta (alphabets or stars) to make a hearty meal.

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Dearest Rito

You are now 18 months old. It seems like it was yesterday when we brought home a helpless, wrinkly and oddly shaped baby home from the hospital. Now you are tall, lean and independent little boy. 
In the last six weeks you have gone through a HUGE growth spurt and clothing that was too big on you two months ago is now in the “I have outgrown it” pile; you have burned through an entire wardrobe faster then Mama ever could imagine was possible. You must be into another growth spurt right now as well since you have decided to wake up and eat every single night. Last night you were up five times between 2:11am and 6:30am; twice to eat and 3 times to holler at the top of your lungs. I don’t think you will be the smallest boy in our playgroup anymore!
Christmas was a lot of fun this year, you attempted to open some presents (but preferred the boxes and wrapping paper over the contents of the boxes), ate a bunch of junk (chocolate! and candy canes!) and learned a new game called RUN from your much older cousins. Santa was very good to you this year and brought you a toboggan, which is still in the living room since you insist on “riding” it daily. All the gifts were great but your favorite new toy is not a toy at all, but a pair of winter boots. You love putting your boots on (usually on the wrong feet) and running around the house illuminating the dark hallways with the blinking lights on the side of your boots. We haven’t even worn the boots outside yet because we don’t want to take away your favorite new toy. 
You have mastered eating with a fork, and you are getting pretty good at using a spoon now. Lately you prefer to have juice from a glass (yeah glass) not a cup or a sippy cup; it has to be a glass or you get pretty angry about it. This week you started calling me Mama (instead of the nagging Mahm! that you have been doing) which is music to my ears. Your vocabulary is growing each day and I can not even keep track of how many words you can say now but it has to be close to 100 words. Whenever I ask you to sing your “Christmas Song” you sing “Wa La La Wa La” (like the fa la la la la  in Deck the Halls) it is the cutest thing I have ever heard. 
In the last 18 months you have taught me how to be a Mom. You are the first thing on my mind when I get up each morning and the last thing I think of before I fall asleep. My dreams are filled with your smiling face and sweet voice. You keep me busy and perpetually exhausted. On the good days we laugh and chase each other around, and on the not so good days I always promise to do better for you tomorrow. I love you so much it really does hurt. 
You are such a great little man that Daddy and I are crazy enough to try to do this again. 
Love you more then chocolate, 
P.S. Vegetables are NOT poisonous and even though you don’t believe me your favorite cucumbers ARE a vegetable. 

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It has been a shit couple weeks in the McSleepy house. Rito gave me his cold and I have had it for 2 (TWO) weeks now and although the end of it is in sight I still have a couple days of coughing left ahead of me (my gawd the coughing is killing me and my sleep). I feel so tired and crappy and yet I still have a little man to take care of (and the big one too), work to do and a job to go to (need I mention that yet again I got saddled with doing the Christmas Party for work?).

All that being said I have been a busy bee on my days off work. We have had three family birthdays to celebrate recently (my brother-in-law J-Roc, Uncle Merv and myself) with another family dinner this week to attend (yay! I don’t have to cook!). I also have been on a re-organization kick and finally attacked my laundry room with a drill and some screws creating an additional 18 feet of shelving and a drop down drying rack for my sweaters. The best part of the renovation in the laundry closet is that I now have an empty hallway linen closet, which means I now have a little bit of space to store some books and hide my purse out of Rito’s reach (seriously the kid loves my purse and shoes, Dad! seems to be a little concerned). Dad! also moved some stereo equipment to our basement, allowing me to move the main floor toy corner to a different spot and put my family room furniture back where it belongs. Ahhh… bliss. 
Next is a revamping of our main bathroom, where I am adding a towel rack (I took out the towel bar and replaced it with hooks already), a curved shower curtain holder, a rainshower shower head and possibly storage behind the door (which would totally clean up another closet).  I love cleaning up and creating more storage. Then there is the new closet in the basement where I need a hose hanger and 4 shelves for games and puzzles which will add a ton more storage space.  There is a lot of wasted space in this house to fix up. With the latest improvements we have added a ton (like 200-300 square feet) of storage and space to our home. I love making things more efficient and tidy. 
Dad! and I have had a lot of family time together lately which has been so good for Rito. We have had family dinners (Rito drinks out of a glass now, no straws or sippy cups or he gets mad) and gone swimming (what a blast). Rito has been fantabulous with minimal tantrums and some pretty damn good nights of sleep. We had a couple playdates (but missed playgroup due to the cold) and visited some little cousins for fun. 
Other then the cold I am such a lucky girl. 
next post: Rito’s ridiculous vocabulary and I got a new crockpot…… oh my lord it is SO HOT.
I wanted to add some photos but I am totally bloggers bitch today, which means the photo thingy ain’t working again!

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The evil paintbrush has been mocking me from the corner of the basement for the last few weeks. In my defense I would like to say that the replacement door was just hung last Thursday and I had to prime and repaint it (even though the other one had already been done) so it isn’t totally my fault that the playroom is not done yet.
By this time tomorrow the playroom will be completed. For real. The painter comes to do the walls in the morning and tonight I painted all the baseboards and one french door and primed the other one. So once I paint the other door tomorrow everything will technically be finished and usable.
Rito will be thrilled, he already loves to slide around on the cork flooring (highly recommend the cork floors) and shut himself in the closet (who needs a playroom when there is a perfectly good closet to hide in?).
All that is left to do is hang the bracket in the closet that will hold the central vac hose, get some blinds made for a little window and eventually put shelving in the closet to house puzzles and board games.
In the meantime I will be drinking a glass of wine and enjoying the lack of brightly colored baby crap in my living room……
****edited to add that for the first time ever I hit spellcheck and had no errors. Dad! will likely be quite shocked.****

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Rito has really started to talk lately. A lot. You really need to listed closely to understand what he is saying (because he does sound a little like Latka on Taxi) but he has a lot to say. For my own use, I decided to list the words I know of that he is using and how he says it (because they grow up too fast, and alas I forget pretty fast too): 

bubble (bubba)
bananas (nanas)
socks (sox)
spoon (poon)
shoes (ooze)
going (going – he says it right)
what you doing (says it clearly)
what we doing (says it clearly)
what’s that (wha dat)
juice (joos)
woof (fine it is a sound, but he does it on command) (wuf)
vroom (another sound but whatever)
wham (wam)
water (wah wa)
hot (growl the word hot like haawwttt)
done (clearly)
Pablo (pahlo)
Mamamamama (clearly)
Dad! (loud and clear)
Daddy (dahdeeeeeeee)
Mom (Mum – drag the u out as long as you can)
gum (clearly) 
bum (clearly)
boobs (bubz)
ball (bah)
Baba (clearly, my god my granny will have a heart attack when she hears this one this week)
He also has one swear down pat (and very, very clear), but Dad! doesn’t want me broadcasting our sailor talk to the world….. 
I just love hearing little people talk (when I say Little People I do not mean “those who get their own show on TLC and a DUI but have released a book like this) and each day I try a few new words out with Rito. Each day I am more and more amazed at how fast he picks it all up.
Sure he is not doing long division like some peoples children 🙂 but it is nice to get some verbal communication happening.
Speaking of up, my little monkey is waking up from his 3 hour nap right now (woot woot!)……. 

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My day started at 5:30am, how about you? 

Rito decided 5:30am was a fantastic time to start throwing a party in his crib. Usually if he does get up that early (he is crying most the time) you can coax him back to sleep for a couple hours with a warm glass of milk. Today? Not so much, he woke up in full on chatterbox jumping in the crib mode. I got up, warmed some milk and gave it to him and all I got in return was a not hungry and very much awake toddler. Finally around 7am he zonked out again until 8:15, so at least I got to have a shower before the day started for real. 
We had an appointment to go to the vet with BuddyLove for some shots and an examination. I was a little concerned about her teeth as the back teeth are gathering plaque very quickly even though we brush much more then most dog owners do, so we had her teeth looked at too. The Doctor said her dental problems are very genetic, and that there is not much we can really do to stop them, but there is a concern that her back teeth are taking such a beating before she is even 3 years old. Her front teeth are in beautiful shape but she has a touch of gingivitis which is to be expected with the issue with her back teeth.  Of course you can always get them cleaned, but it is best to put it off as long as possible, because once you start cleaning them you don’t get to stop. 
So for now we are changing her food for a while to see if it helps. BuddyLove is on the best food (we feel) right now but it is not known for keeping a dogs teeth clean. So starting tonight I am phasing in the new food that is known to break down plaque. We have tried this once before but likely did not stick with it long enough, so to keep us on the program I bought a huge bag of dog food to last for hopefully 2 months.  As well, we are changing to a children’s or adults size soft toothbrush (currently use a baby one) and continuing with the LebaLab Leba 3 treatments to help with knocking down the buildup. We also got a new bottle of shampoo (mmm Canadian Vet Medicated Shampoo, makes her smell SO nice) and ear cleaner. 
On the good side, she is doing a great job emptying her anal glands (yay! so I don’t have to, it is such a gross, messy and stinky job) and has lost the couple pounds she had gained when Rito started feeding himself and throwing her food (she was over 27 pounds at one point now she is a slightly overweight 25.2pounds which is OK with the Doctor). I have worked hard the last week to slim her down because I was anticipating a lecture from the Vet about her chunk. The only thing worse then a Vet complaining about you fat dog is your own Doctor complaining about your fat.
On the way home we (Rito and I) stopped at Taco Del Mar and shared a chicken taco with rice and beans. Rito loved the rice and beans. I never knew that until today, so he will be getting rice and beans more often. 
When we got home, Rito tripped on the garage stairs but seemed fine and kept going with no complaints. So, imagine my surprise when I saw BLOOD all over my linoleum. Little peanut cracked his lip a bit, but it seems fine now. Just shocked Mamamama (bonus though, he was really cuddly for an hour while we watched a little Finding Nemo and ate a snack and he is NEVER cuddly) to see her child’s blood on the floor, and a lot of it too. I guess it always looks worse then it is.
Later, when I was peeing he went to his room and found his Bath and BodyWorks Rootbeer kids lotion and squirted it on his pillow. At least it smells great in there now. Oy.
Now Rito is napping and I have finished cleaning the basement so that the playroom can be moved down there once the painter gets his royal ass to my house and paints the room. I can not wait to reclaim a little of our main floor from the evil triad of Fisher Price, Little Tykes and Leap Frog
Maybe this afternoon we will go to a fish store and look at fish. Rito just loves them when we go to the mall, and I think he would get a kick out of them at the fish store. Maybe when he is a bit bigger we will get him a fish for his room. You know, like at that age where he doesn’t try to drink from the fishbowl or eat the fish? 

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