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Friday, April 28, 2006

A lovely portrait of Jay, by Corry
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Thursday, April 20, 2006

Ho-hum. "No jellybeans for the baby"
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What're you doing with my eggs, Daddy?
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I wonder what's inside!
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The tiny foot of doom
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Oh, the eyelashes!
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When tummy time turns into nappy time
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Wednesday, April 19, 2006
In Other News That Doesn't Matter...
The house with the pretty fireplace and nice homeschool room (and the one favored by many readers) has just undergone a drastic price reduction. Oh well.

These Doggy Shoes Were Made for Walking
Yesterday morning, during the supposed 9 AM showing (we didn't make it out of the house until 20 after or so, and we doubt anyone even came), we walked downtown. All four of us, no strollers involved. Isaac rode in the sling, and Paul shepherded Jay through all the obstacles an almost-19-month-old can find in 4 blocks. It was fun to see Jay do so well at walking and staying on the sidewalk, but I wouldn't attempt it alone. I need more control. He's got to be strapped into the stroller, or maybe on a toddler leash (I wonder how well those work), because he's just not good at holding hands, and I'm not strong enough to grab him at a moment's notice. Anyway, Jay did a great job of walking!

Later in the afternoon, Paul had a job, so he left about the time Jay came down after his nap. He called a short time later to say that someone had left a message on his cell phone that they were coming to see the house at 3:30. Which was 20 minutes away by the time I got the message. I was in the middle of changing a runny Jay diaper, and hadn't gotten his pants back on 10 minutes later, when they actually came. I had locked the storm door to keep Jay from wandering outside, so I had to trust him to back down the stairs pantsless while I went ahead and unlocked the door. Thankfully, this was one of the rare times I was able to leave Isaac in his Kick'n'play for more than 5 minutes and come back to find him content.

The realtor said she'd get the property disclosure sheet from our realtor, but the client didn't look even slightly interested, so I'm sure it was just polite small talk. Did I mention that they left before we did? I had to get Jay's pants on, still. Anyway, we did make it out on our own, Jay, Isaac, and I, and we finally got to see Doggy Kells. It had been so long! Jay still seemed to understand that if he cooperated, we might get to see the doggy, though.

FYI: It's kind of strenuous pushing 26 lbs of stroller, 30 lbs of toddler, and 10 lbs of infant uphill.

Somehow, Isaac decided it would be okay to take naps in the pack'n'play bassinet rather than on my shoulder or in the sling. He'll sleep for a good 2,3 hours at a time. What a relief! At night, though, he hasn't been too happy about our attempts to put him in the co-sleeper. It almost looked like it was going to work last night, but our evening Bible reading seemed to disturb him. I guess we'd better get the child baptized! ;)

Monday, April 17, 2006
Ambivalence, Part Two
Our contract with the realtor ends this month. We've been on the market for 6 months sometime around the end of the month. It's very difficult to get the house ready to show on short notice, and Paul doesn't want to move anyway, so I was resigned to staying here if we didn't get an offer before the six months is out, even though I know "The Season" is just starting. We finally got our hands on the double stroller we were promised, and I was starting to like the idea of staying, despite the bursitis pangs.

Anyway, we keep making a little more progress, it seems, each time the house is shown. I figure when we finally get our junk under control (i.e. when we finally finish unpacking the stuff that's been in boxes since we moved in), that's probably when we'll get an offer, and have to pack everything back up. There was a showing this afternoon and there's another in the morning. I would still really like for everything the kids and I need to be on one story, so maybe it will happen. It only takes one buyer (as I've been saying since early November...)

A Little Easter Treat
for CEP and the rest of you old house buffs. Check out the Watson-Whisnant house. Ahhh! Even if you only like the before pictures, it's worth the trip =]

Mr. Furious
If you've ever seen Mystery Men, you know of whom I type. The superhero whose superpower was to get really, really angry. My baby IS... THAT... HERO! [Gratuitous LarryBoy reference for those who missed it]

Isaac has kicked his little vinyl changing pad out from underneath him previously, but when we got up this morning, he was really mad. Since we were upstairs at the permanent changing station with the big contoured changing pad, all he could do was repeatedly push himself up along it, managing to head-butt the basket of clean diapers we keep up there and knock them off the table, after I'd already moved him back down the pad once, then travel back up the changing pad until his head was hanging off the pad, resting on the dresser.

We were spared further mayhem when I finally got his diaper on him and started to carry him downstairs, though he voiced all the rage that can be contained in a 10-lb human being as we made our way down the stairs. When he's really mad, it's not the bark, bark, bark of a red alert (he uses that for medium distress). When he's mad, it's a single high-pitched "AAaaaa!!" that increases in pitch until his breath gives out, then he starts over again. His meaning is pretty clear.

Sunday, April 16, 2006
Happy Easter!!
Mmmm... jellybeans and peeps! I restrained myself and only bought the bare essentials for our Easter celebration (plus a 3-pack of Dove chocolate truffle eggs *wink*). I figured this was plenty of sugar for Jay, for sure (I've re-thought my intention to give him one of the truffle eggs- he can't fully appreciate it yet, anyway!) We had a 12-pack of plastic eggs, 2 in each kid's basket and 8 for hiding. It took some prompting for Jay to search his Easter basket, since it's been in his toybox since last Easter, and therefore he didn't find it odd that it was sitting out. Once I got him to look in it, he saw a new book, which made him smile right away, and then he checked out the eggs inside, shaking each one. He handed me the one with the two jellybeans inside, so I opened it for him, and he was holding one for a while before I got him to understand that it was an edible. Then he stood there saying "Mmmmm!" while he chewed each one. Then he handed me the other egg to be opened, and I handed it back to him with the peep still inside. Once again, I had to show him what to do with it, and once again, it prompted a chorus of "Mmmm!"s.

From there it got kind of interesting. Paul had to leave at eight (and yes, I finally made it downstairs before 8- before 7:30, even) to sing with the choir, and a local church friend had graciously agreed to help me get the kids into the car before the late service. Jay watched the VeggieTales Easter Carol in the morning, which gave me time to shower. I had a while to get ready, but I just hadn't counted on the negotiations and nagging to get Jay to come with me as I went up and down the stairs (I could have left him, but for a dirty diaper and downed gates) or the extra feedings Isaac would demand. Anyway, by the time my friend was here, we still had to sock and shoe Jay and get his cute little vest on (we may as well have skipped the footwear process, since his feet were bare by the time we got to Durham anyway- I should have known), and get both kids into the car and strapped into their seats. Jay's seating took about 10 minutes, and in any case, we were late to church. I didn't have time to get pre-church photos, and naturally Isaac gave his outfit the 1-2 punch while I was changing him right after we got home, so no cute dressy Easter photos =-[ I did get some pictures during the egg hunt this evening, though, so they should be up at some point in the not-too-distant future.

Then when we were finally allowed to go into the sanctuary, Isaac set to wailing as soon as the doors opened, and I had to go feed him to get him calmed down. The good thing is that he proceeded to sleep through the rest of the service, lunch, and almost the whole ride home. May have something to do with his recent reluctance to sleep for any significant stretch after 4 AM... Anyway, I got there in time to hear the sermon and sing the closing hymn. Not quite the Easter worship I'd hoped for, but that's the way the jellybean rolls, I suppose. Jay had a good time looking for Easter eggs, and had figured out how to open them by the end of the hunt. All in all, it was a fun Easter for Jay, I think, and so a good Easter for us too!

Thursday, April 13, 2006
Househunt Status
Long time, no change. If it's not the clutter and the mess, it's the small kitchen, and we still haven't gotten any offers. There are several houses I'd like to get a look at, but there's no point if Paul's not willing to move ahead.

Here are the reasons I want to move:
1. The kids' bedroom is upstairs, which makes it unwise for me to attempt moving Jay between his room and the living area when he isn't cooperating (thankfully, he'll usually go up or down if I get him on the stairs and position myself between him and the end I don't want him on)

2. Jay's toys are in the living room, which makes it impossible for me to both work and watch Jay at the same time. I used to make fairly good use of naptimes, but now I have another child's schedule to work around. My director has asked me to come up with a different schedule when I come back, incorporating more in-office time and less at-home time, most likely because I really wasn't getting my work done. I suppose this lessens the need for a combined office/playroom, but it does not obviate it.

3. The porch stairs are much easier to negotiate now that they are not so steep, but there are still a lot of them, and I need to get Jay up and down them when we go out. This is Paul's job when he's home, but I'd like to be able to venture out on my own (with the kids) without the fear of tumbling down the stairs.

4. We live 20 miles away from where I work, our church, and the vast majority of our friends. We chose to live here because real estate is cheaper here (our house cost less than $80k), but now that we have kids, our church and social interactions are so much more limited. Besides which, it's getting kind of expensive to feed the cars.

I've said it before: I love this house; it's got character for sure. I love that it's old and has beadboard all over, a nice front porch, a wonderful color scheme in the nursery ;) We've spent a lot of money getting the house re-roofed, sided, re-"porched", and replacing the gas pack. We have a great downtown a few blocks away with a bunch of friendly folks who love to see Jay (not to mention a great place to get fancy expensive coffee drinks, and, recently, a place that sells German chocolate cake by the slice!) We have no real concerns about the safety of the neighborhood, but we haven't really gotten to know our immediate neighbors, either, which is disappointing. The house we had a contract on would have solved problems 1-3 without losing us downtown or having an old house, which is why I was so excited about it. Did I mention it's still on the market? *Sigh*

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Lazybones, sittin' near the sun...
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Love that green milk!
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Working the salt mines
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Yes, I am Still Alive
And life proceeds apace. I still haven't figured out how to get up by 8 AM, even though I've made it to bed before 11 the past two nights, and Isaac has slept for a 6+ hr stretch each night. I guess I just need to do the morning nursing sitting up. It should help my bursitis too.

Isaac's gurgly coos and dimply smiles are not yet a daily occurrence (unless you count the sleep smiles- he's fairly generous with them), but they happen often enough that I'm always hoping to catch one. He still seems to be snuffling a lot, but the doc says he has a short chin which pushes his tongue into his throat and which will resolve on its own soon. I sure hope so!

Jay, meantime, loves to be read to, and sat through three longish books, one after another, when I came down this morning. He's had some fun on the porch (photos will follow at some point), and likes to try and stick keys into the door handle (on the inside!) I'm not sure how he figured out that that's what keys are for, since I'm sure he hasn't witnessed much unlocking at our house, but he does learn quickly. He finally stacked some of his books up on the shelf where they belong today. I couldn't get him to bring any to the shelf from the other side of the room, even though he enjoyed the applause he was getting for stacking the nearby ones (and he definitely participates in self-congratulation ;) ).

Reading Upside-down
When I was in college, I remember staying up into the wee hours trying to read assignments, which were always in plenteous supply (at least they were if I happened to be enrolled in a history course at the time). Eventually I discovered that not only did those pore-tightening masks help me stay awake, but that reading upside-down (that is, holding the book upside-down) heightened my concentration. Well, that was then, this is now, and as it turns out, if I'm going to read Fox in Socks to Jay, it helps to have him seated beside me instead of standing in front of me! ("Three free fleas flew through three cheese trees...")

OOOops! Should be: "Through three cheese trees three free fleas flew ..." I knew that wasn't quite right!

Thursday, April 06, 2006
A Few Quick Notes
I've got to do an Indie Virus post, post some ruminations on the house hunt, and describe a few vignettes of life around here (infant smiles and all!). But there's no telling how much longer I have right now, so I wanted especially to ask for Easter ideas for an 18-month-old. Paul's really not into the whole egg thing, but Jay loves round 3 dimensional items, so I may have to orchestrate a front-porch egg hunt anyway. At the moment, our porch is very uncluttered (1 table, 2 chairs, a ride-on firetruck, and sometimes a stroller). I may have to add a flowerpot or two to make things a little more interesting.

We went to Baby Depot yesterday, partly (mostly) so Paul could get a gate for the porch steps. Jay, Isaac and I spent about an hour on the porch yesterday, and within the first 10 minutes we were out there, a firetruck went past with its siren blaring and lights flashing, and we got to see the schoolbus go by. Jay was a pretty excited little boy. Paul was observant enough to notice that the porch railing wasn't connected to the house at the top on either side. Good thing, because Jay quickly discovered the same thing. If Paul hadn't warned me, I'm not sure I would have noticed. Anyway, the contractor was called, apologized fairly profusely, and returned early this morning to complete the job. Maybe that's where we'll head when Jay wakes up from his afternoon nap.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006
By theWay
It's official- I'm a blank tile in the genetic Scrabble game. The nurse came in today and said "Well, if he don't look like his daddy, I don't know who does!" Jay, meantime, is referred to as "Paul, Jr" and "Mini Me" at church.

The First Month Isn't That Bad!!
The handout from the pediatrician (which is written in "You can try x with your baby" style all the way through) ends with this tantalizing possibility: "By your next appointment, you maybe may begin smiling and making sounds other than crying, such as cooing." I laughed out loud.

The weird thing about Isaac's one-month checkup was that he weighs more than Jay did at his one-month check-up. And Jay weighed 1 lb, 11 oz more at birth! At 9 lb, 4 oz and 22 inches, Isaac has gained 2 lbs and 3 inches since birth. That's pretty good for a month!

Monday, April 03, 2006
I can't figure out how to change the time and date of my Isaac at one month post. So here it is!

Well, That's a Relief!
You Passed 8th Grade Math

Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!
Could You Pass 8th Grade Math?

via Ladydusk

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Flying Ace brothers
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Jay, Flying Ace, with milk
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Playing hooky from church with a bit of a cold
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Isaac, Flying Ace, working out
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Isaac Flying Ace
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Saturday, April 01, 2006

Isaac in fleece-lined terry cloth
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18 mos + a week. Love those cat treats!
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Isaac in fleece
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Our new front steps
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