Friday, September 30, 2005
It's Hard to Be a Year Old
Well, it has its hard moments, anyway. Apart from odious naptimes (and bedtime), and the occasional fall (most of which are not crying matters, thankfully!), the only thing that really makes Jay cry is not getting attention, or not getting it from the proper parent. Sometimes he's content to play and won't notice if we duck out of the room to dash off an e-mail or refill his milk cup, but other times, parental attendance is cumpulsory on pain of loud crying.
The most predictably upsetting parental snub is the one which comes after an absence. Take this morning: Jay was late waking up, which allowed me to be late getting up, which put me way behind on my going-to-work preparations. I poured some milk into his sippy cup and hopped into the shower, hoping Paul would take his time bringing Jay down and I would be fast enough that I could still hold Jay while he drank his morning milk. I wasn't very quick, and Paul wasn't very slow, and so anyway, when I got out of the shower, Jay was on Paul's lap guzzling his milk. I came over to kiss the boy, and he gave me his empty cup. I went to put it in the sink while he delivered a rousing wail of protest. I still had to go upstairs and get dressed (I should have been getting in the car around this time), so I apologized over my shoulder as he started crying again.
Once I was dressed, I had to pick him up when I passed through the living room again, and he watched me disconnect my laptop (though Jay was the actual occupant of my lap), fussed a little when I plopped him into the playard, and followed me back and forth in his playard as I moved between the desk and my bag, packing up. Then I put him in his booster seat with some stale cheerios so I could go to the kitchen for my food. He was getting restless again by the time I was finally ready, but Paul arrived with Jay's egg and I could leave without being trailed by mournful Jay sounds.
If either of us returns from the outside world, though, without making a bee-line for our beloved son, he will pitch a fit, regardless of however much attention the other parent lavishes. It's really no more than he should expect, though!
Thursday, September 29, 2005
A Thursday Three I can really sink my teeth into:
Today’s topic--SELF IMPROVEMENT!
1) What one language would you most like to learn to speak, or at least understand?
2) What one skill would you most like to learn?
3) What one character flaw would you most like to rid yourself of?
1) It would be nice if I could get some practice in the languages I've already studied (i.e. German and Russian) so I would know where I stand. I know my Russian is quite bad, but I think my German would be passable after a week or so of hearing it and using it. Apart from that, I think it would be fun to learn Swedish, though I suspect it's just made-up nonsense they put on signs to confuse the tourists.
2) It may not be a single skill, but I wish I could take good care of my house: fix things when they're broken, replace stained ceiling tiles and paneling. I wish I could make my house look nice without paying people mucho deneiro to do it. I don't have m.d. anyway.
3) I'd like to be more energetic and adventurous. If I were, I might plunge into some projects around the house and learn a thing or two while I'm at it.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Yep, I'm definitely there. I still get voracious at times and very sleepy at other times, but the nausea is a thing of the past. I'm also pretty sure I've been feeling a little bit of movement (though some sources say it's still too early, my midwife disagrees), but no recognizable kicks. I sure hope that amniotic sac is a good cushion, 'cuz it seems like "big brother" uses my belly for a toehold every chance he gets!
As I mentioned, my next appointment is the 19-wk ultrasound, and Paul and I haven't decided whether or not we want to be told which sex the baby is. A couple moms have already weighed in that it's more fun not to know. Anybody else have any advice, anecdotes, etc.?
Monday, September 26, 2005
And I don't know where to start! Thursday Jay and I both had MD appointments (mine having been changed twice and moved to Burlington), both of which went well. He is 29.75" tall and 26 pounds, which apparently puts him in the 50th and 90th percentiles, respectively. So no French fries for Jay for a while (he did enjoy some German potato salad over the weekend, but we won't be telling our pediatrician about that. Or the cake!) Anyway, the doctor said he did look very healthy and wasn't alarmist about the weight issue, but just recommended we stick with meats and vegetables along with milk.
My appointment was mercifully short, but we (Jay and I) got to hear the baby's heartbeat, which was obviously cool. The next time we get to do the ultrasound, so I guess Paul and I need to decide whether we'll be modern and have them tell us the sex of the baby or be traditional like we were with Jay. We've got a month to not decide, and we may well use it!
Friday morning we headed out on our mountain adventure. We stayed in Massanutten at this house with my parents, sister, older brother, sis-in-law, and niece. There were quite a few empty beds, but it worked out pretty well and wasn't terribly expensive (especially since my parents picked up nearly half the tab and my sibs refused our hospitality!). We also got to see a number of friends, mostly my college friends and their families, but also friends of the family from when Dad worked in DC 25 years ago! The kids were all very cute and well-behaved on the whole (a trifle rambunctious, but that's to be expected), and Jay's cousin repeatedly delivered his sippy cups to him and back to the sink when he was done.
Unfortunately, Jay had a rough time with the ceramic tile in the common areas of the house, particularly on Friday, when he managed to hit his head three times. Other than that, most of our guests were not intrepid enough to drive the driveway, which was much steeper than 45 degrees (my mom estimated 85 at it's steepest, and I don't think that's too far off). I, on the other hand, had much more confidence in the Taurus' ability to safely descend and ascend than I had in my own ability. My trust in the Ford was not misplaced!
Thursday, September 22, 2005
I'm ready for more, please!
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This birthday cake thing is alright!
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Not one just yet...
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Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Somebody's One Year Old Today!
Photos will be posted at some point, hopefully tomorrow. Y'all have got to see his birthday hat!
Monday, September 19, 2005
Am I a Hypocrite?
I've said a few times that pointing fingers and assigning blame (in regard to the Katrina rescue and relief effort) was not helpful at this point. I wonder if we're truly past that point, and suspect we're not. However (!) I am tired of the media trying to lay it all at the President's doorstep, and I am tired of holding my tongue (keyboard?).
First of all, the Bush administration can not be blamed for not having built better levies. Any such project would have had to have been begun before he was elected to his first term to have been completed by now. Iraq has nothing to do with it. The Clinton administration didn't tackle this, so why should we assume that if only we had not gone to war, New Orleans would have been the top priority?
Yes, the appointment of Michael Brown to FEMA's leadership was a bad one, and it may have cost lives (a grave admission to be sure). I say "may", because the administration did not appoint the whole organization, just the head, and when the rubber meets the road, it seems like the entrenched professionals in more operational roles would have a much greater impact on the outcome of any relief efforts than the upper leadership would.
Even if I grant you that the appointment was disastrous and had tragic consequences, the fact is that local authorities were at greater fault for allowing so many people to be in such dire straits to begin with. I have read on various blogs, Drudge-linked stories, and yes, in National Review, how state and city authorities failed to put allocated money (from FEMA) into the evacuation planning it was earmarked for, and how even the plans that existed were far superior to the slipshod "preparations" which actually happened. There were provisions for busing out those without other means of transportation, better shelters designated, and specifications for food and water at the shelters, all of which were wantonly disregarded.
While it would be refreshing to see Mayor Nagin own up to the bad choices and irresponsibility this points to in the city administration, I, for one, am not holding my breath.
Nattering in ADR's Stead
I'm sure she would glumly post on this if she were in town.
Saturday, September 17, 2005
First of all, thanks for the well-wishes! It appears that I was felled by a stomach bug, and I've been feeling much better the latter part of this week. Except that a bunch of things I had signed up for at work all were circling around me, and had been over-occupying me for the last two weeks. I worked the two past Saturdays (not today, but the previous ones), Labor Day Monday, and most evenings after Jay went to bed and it still all came down to the wire. Hence, my title (or is that whence?)
It didn't help that I was alone on bedtime duty 5 times in the past seven days. God knew I needed Thursday. I wouldn't have survived otherwise!
Thursday, September 15, 2005
It's Been One of Those Days
You know, the kind where you get a glimpse of just how richly you're blessed. Sure, it had its down points: my boss calling to ask me to come in (from 20 miles away) to get something, Paul not being home to keep Jay or put him to bed, Jay wanting to stand rather than sit in his car seat, ditto with the booster seat we use for a high chair, Jay not wanting to eat breakfast, Jay tossing his dinner vegetables over the side of his chair... Um, I think those were the downers. Oh, and getting kicked- hard- whenever I try to change Jay's diaper. And he refused to nap this afternoon. Did I mention how mad he was when I gave up on his napping? Or when I put away the bubbles I'd gotten out to pacify him following his non-nap?
But you know, so what? Jay learned how to clap today while visiting a former church-mate who is now a distant colleague, he had his first hamburger for lunch (and let me know how much he enjoyed it =] ), he charmed the pants off of every last one of my co-workers (duh), he drank pretty much a whole bottle of water in the back seat and only spilled about half of it (including what he spurted while drinking from his sippy cup *shrug* I thought he was thirsty...), and tonight, he crawled over to me, pulled up and said, "Hey Mama" (OK, it only happened once, but it was so appropriate and believable). He tried to put the triangle block through the triangle hole in his shape-sorter ball (if it had been 2-dimensional, he'd have had it) and later was gathering the blocks and putting them in (through the top). And when I said "Good, good, good!"to his practicing his new clapping skill, he answered "Guh, guh, guh!" How cool is that? I'll tell you, it's awesome, because later when he was opening the forbidden drawer and I asked him not to, he closed it back up, and I knew precisely what to say to him AND what he'd say in return. Tonight was an absolute love fest. He's an awesome little guy. But then, I'm probably biased.
Now if you'll excuse me, I need to do the work I didn't do while he wasn't napping.
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
I've Either Got a Stomach Bug
Or killer morning sickness just waited until midway through week 12 to show.
Sunday, September 11, 2005
That President of Ours
First Katrina, now this. Why won't he stop messing with the cosmic balance?
(OK, perhaps liberals have enough sense not to blame solar flares on W., but then again...)
Vyera taking advantage of Kostya's absence from an open window
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Kostya taking advantage of an open window
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I don't really care that Mama cut my bangs crooked and short, because I'm still adorable!
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I Don't Think This Counts,
but Jay has been shaking his head "no" periodically ever since waking up from his afternoon nap. It doesn't seem to be in response to anything, which is why I'm not counting it as contrariness. Yet.
Saturday, September 10, 2005
The Feeding Habits of Nearly-one-year-olds
As Jordana's comment below hinted, Jay definitely prefers finger foods, though he really does like yogurt for breakfast on Saturday mornings. Anyway, I decided I'd seen enough food coming back out of Jay's mouth the past few days, not to mention the bib contests which ensue, and I'd prefer to not repeat such battles today while Paul's away studying ESL teaching. Jay ate 95% of his peach yogurt at breakfast, thankfully, and Vyera's always happy to help out with any leftover yogurt.
So as lunch approached, I decided to go spoonless. There was only pastrami in place of the turkey Paul usually keeps in the fridge for sandwiches, so I decided to scramble Jay a couple of eggs, and put in some Colby-Jack cheese shreds while I was at it. I'm pleased to say the lunch was a resounding success, rounded out with some frozen veggies and a few of my alfredo noodles. On a roll, I couldn't help but top it all off with the last oatmeal raisin cookie (though I got the lion's share, Jay enjoyed his part).
So then I forgot to give him his pre-afternoon nap bottle until I saw last night's bottle on the floor by the crib. Upstairs, of course. If I had left him in his crib to go get the bottle, enraged screaming would have ensued, I reasoned, and it might confuse him to interrupt what he would view as naptime (hence the screaming) by bringing him a bottle in a few minutes. If I brought him downstairs with me, I'd have to bring him back up in a few minutes. Then I remembered the extra doorframe jumper installed in our bedroom. I am very thankful for it now! Of course, when I returned with the bottle, I had to give it to Jay PRONTO so he wouldn't think I was just being cruel. Unfortunately, as good as he has gotten with his sippy cup, he still doesn't seem to have the knack of drinking from a bottle standing up, so I had to take it away from him so he would reach for me so I could remove him. Not a popular decision, but the desired result was achieved, Jay had his bottle, and then I put him in his crib so he could nap after howling his protest.
Thursday, September 08, 2005
Jay has eaten the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of yummy food. It all started when the oatmeal got old. I really had to sympathize with him. Who wants oatmeal for dinner every night for months? But now, even the pureed green beans with rice do not tempt Jay, and he barely ate anything at lunch. I ascribed it to his being tired (which he clearly was), but he only ate a few more spoonsful at dinner, preferring to wait and see what his parents were eating. I made him some rice cereal, since he had to eat SOMEthing, and he ate most of what I made him (it wasn't all that much), but slapped the last spoonful from my hand after having removed his bib. I'm beginning to wish he didn't have such good eye-hand coordination.
On the good side, he was a happy happy happy boy this morning. He jumped and jumped in his doorframe seat, flapping his arms and SQUEEEEALING with abandon. My theory is that he missed me, since I had to leave for work yesterday at 8 AM and didn't come home until he was sound asleep. Kostya clearly had missed me, too, as he kept jumping on the bed and purring at me at various wee hours this morning and large hours, I suppose, last night. It's wonderful to be home!
It's always nice to confirm that the reason one's child is being a pill is that he's so tired he can barely see straight, particularly when one can do so by watching said child fall asleep in about thirty seconds of back-patting to a salubrious serving of "Mercury Blues".
Tuesday, September 06, 2005
Speaking of Kitties
So Jay's got at least one word: "ki-y". He also seemed to be expressing excitement about "coo-ies" earlier in the week (both ginger snaps and a giant snickerdoodle). All of which leads me to the following conclusion: cookies and cats are far more important than mama and daddy. I could try and take comfort in the fact that as these words have a single consonant sound in common, maybe it's just the "k" that he's mastered. Maybe. I doubt it, as he still makes lots of "mmmm" sounds as he's eating, and seems to stumble into saying "Ma" a couple times a day. When I ask him if he can say "mama" though, he gives me a coy little smile. *Sigh*.
I should look on the bright side: at least he now warns me when the cats are approaching!
Monday, September 05, 2005
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Clean, corralled, and turning on the charm.
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Clean, corralled, and... happy?
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Very Worthwhile Read
First-hand account by a rescue worker, documenting courageous and selfless acts of ordinary hurricane victims in New Orleans.
Link via Tulipgirl.
Thursday, September 01, 2005
I don't have anything enlightening or profound to say about the hurricane and its aftermath. But John Kerry and whoever lost the MS/AL/LA governor's races should be thankful that they don't have the responsibility for the country/state at a time like this. I suppose God gives some leaders gifts equal to this kind of challenge, the gifts of energy, decision-making, capability, and most of all knowing that it's impossible to fix it all and that that's ok (you could call that grace), but I just can't imagine having that kind of weight on my shoulders.
I have a hard time taking this situation on even in prayer- it seems too big. A faithless attitude, I know. It's not because my prayers are going to save all the stranded storm victims that I need to pray. It's because of who God is.
I'm done saying nothing enlightening now (don't we wish! ;) )
Already Acting Like a Second-Time Mom
I don't remember the due date they gave me. I was all excited because they were going to have to do an ultrasound (the midwife was kind and did the belly version) to give me a date, and I forgot the date. I know it was March 20-something (too late for me to ask them to deliver on my dad's birthday, the 14th). For some reason I think it was the 24th, but that might just be because Jay was due September 24th. Anyway, I might be able to schedule my c-section so as to be exactly 18 months from Jay's birthday! That would be kind of cool. Speaking of which, it is very much nicer to face the prospect of being very pregnant in late winter as opposed to late summer. Good baby!
Paul's joining in on the second-timer thing. Fully aware that an ultrasound was very likely during my appointment, he decided Jay's nap was more important and they stayed home- even though the child had a perfectly good morning nap.
In other Jay news, the play yard is serving SOME purpose, I suppose. Unfortunately, the child steadfastly refuses to slumber therein. We do have a great deal of fun playing with his Noah's ark animals (they are quite afraid of him and peek around corners spying on him) and he makes hilarious faces squished against the side. Sadly, every time the camera comes out he stands up straight so he has a clear view of it. No nylon comes between a boy and his chance to shine.