Monday, May 30, 2016

Ziyan's First Bath

He was not in love with it, but after a quick fuss, he settled in. Zahra was a wonderful helper.

Ziyan is One Week Old

At one week, here are some thoughts on our little lamb:

Daddy proudly claims him as our darkest Mammen.

 This little angel is still remarkably sweet and relaxed

He bleats, like a tiny lamb, to show his displeasure.

He sleeps A LOT.

He poops A LOT.

He loves the wrap just like the big Zs before him!!

His hands and feet are quite big!

My Montessori Graduate

On the kids last week of school, they trotted off to Montessori last Monday expecting to be picked up early to meet their baby brother. They didn't get picked up early, due to the longest Mammen labor in our short history, but when they came bounding in it was as if the world's biggest children were returning home to me. I had birthed Ziyan about ten minutes before they walked in, and the difference between my first baby and my last baby was stark. "I'm so proud of you!" beamed Zayd.

The next day, Tuesday, they were off to school and their darling faces when they returned home were filled with just as much joy and anticipation. (I have never gotten as many hugs and kisses as Zayd and Zahra have doled out this week.) They seemed and, I suppose ARE, so very grown.

And Wednesday marked Zayd's last day as a Montessori Schoolhouse primary student. He came home with bags full of his work and earnestly proclaimed, "I wanted to leave all of my memories at Montessori!" That's when I cried. There were tears of joy to finally have this third baby and tears because my first baby has gotten so big. Having one kid graduate to kindergarten as another one enters the world is maybe too much for one sentimental mama.

After much debate, tours, and terrible charter school lottery purgatories, we have happily found ourselves enrolling in a new SAISD charter that seems it will meet our needs and provide the school environment I want for these Zs. More on that next fall.

Below are photos of Zayd's graduating class releasing balloons out into the world.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Up Close with Ziyan

When I pulled Ziyan from the water and first looked at him, I swear I saw Zayd from five years ago staring back at me. Two days later, he still looks like Zayd but he obviously has Zahra's nose. He has huge hands and long feet that I've never seen in one of my Zs. Ziyan mostly sleeps but on the rare occasion that he bothers to look around, he keeps a serious, if not grumpy, look about him.

I want to compare the three Z's photos side by side but there isn't time for that quite yet. Hopefully soon, but no promises.

Who do you see when you look at our littlest Z?

Ziyan Khan Mammen

Introducing Ziyan Khan Mammen. He was born at home, on purpose, Monday May 23rd, 2016 at 2:41pm. He weighed in at 6lb, 14oz and 20" long. He is remarkably calm and peaceful for one of our brood. It seems, in labor and life, he has many wisdoms to teach us. He was named by his big brother and sister, who have held steadfast to the name for nearly five months. (It's pronounced zee-yan and rhymes with Neon...but cooler.) Thanks to everyone who's sent love, texts, and support. We're over the moon.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016


He might be the best dad in the world. And Zayd is in the running for second most competitive person in the world... And in the house.

I maybe gave Zayd a lecture on resilience today. I know my work mentors would appreciate my ability to coach someone through this topic. After all, those who can't, teach. Right!? (Joke!)

Friday, May 13, 2016

Sam is forty!!

It was a long exhausting day. It was the first day when I felt like I completely gave myself over to being so very pregnant. I actually sat today.

I'm snuggled in at the luxurious St Anthony Hotel while Sam reconnects with great friends who've traveled from far and farther to celebrate his 40th birthday with him. Happy birthday, Sam Mammen. Here's to a great weekend!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

New York Times

We recently spent a solid week in NY and I am happy to report that the kids had a fantastic time. It turns out that they need much less to keep them occupied and are perfectly happy with daily donuts, episodes of Super Why!, and borrowing their cousins toys.
We had a few fantastic outings: the zoo, the Museum of Science & Technology in Syracuse, a dear friend's wedding... But mostly we bummed around the house spending time together, pretending calculators from 1980 were modern-day smart phones and making sidewalk art.
In news: Zayd managed to widely scale a rock wall then just leapt down. On the flight back, Zahra drew her first animal that liked like an animal!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Nine months pregnant!

Here's a summary of my current state:

Zahra: Mommy, you don't look pretty today.
Me: Well, I don't fell particularly pretty, lovebug. I'm super super tired.
Zahra: If you put on a pretty dress, you might feel pretty.
Me: Should we do that?
Zahra: Yes...I think the red one.

And we did.

Special Girl's Day!!

Last week, I promised the world's cutest little lady that we would have a girls day just for us.

How would Zahra plan an afternoon that's all for her? Shoe shopping, cupcakes, and a visit (her first) to the "nail place". I was actually shocked at just how girly our girls day would be.

That being said, she was the best company. We had a fabulous time. i can't even believe how lucky I am that we have our entire lives to shop together and get pedicures!! (The only thing better will be to bring Nani along!)

First, she had to pick some flowers for me.
Then we successfully found fun & funky play shoes at Whole Earth. We celebrated with a cookie sandwich from bird bakery. And then relaxed why getting our toesies painted. Next time, maybe we'll go for a full pedicure experience!

At the end of this special day, Zahra received her first-ever flowers in the mail from Nani!! Love having a three generation girls day; we can plan a live and in person version for next time.