Thursday, December 31, 2009

All Hail the Triumphant Return of the Underwire

Nursing is (virtually) over. I still nurse about once every other day and will do so until at least tomorrow (so I can say I nursed 2008-2010). But, my old supportive bras are back. And they make a huge difference. I'm all thin and curvy and supported in ways that my no-underwire nursing bras never could do. And I have more choices than just white, black, and ecru. Today: red (with lace and a delicate ribbon). Very festive, no?

I missed my bras. It's been almost two years since we've been together (ditto also my button-down shirts). It's like having a whole new, sexy, curvy, colorful wardrobe.

Bobo hates cow milk. He prefers formula. Have you ever tasted formula? I don't think Bobo has taste buds. Will need to ask the ped about that at next visit.

I weaned to a bottle instead of a cup and am not even trying to get rid of the bottle. I don't care. La la la. I'm sure day care will get him off of the bottle when they need to. Bobo is just not so good with the cup (he doesn't even hold his own bottles), so there's no way he'd get enough nutrition from the cup. So, bottle it is. I imagine by 18 months he'll be off of it completely.

My children wore matching and coordinating outfits for much of the last two weeks, and every time I see them dressed all matchy-matchy, my heart fills with maternal love and pride. It's a sickness. But, I have TWO kids, and I can dress them alike because I have TWO. For quite a while there I didn't think I would get any, and then, I figured just one, but here I have TWO. My cup runneth over. Well, actually, my cup was spillethed over by one of those kids and now I am cleaning cold tea up off of the carpet, but you know. I have a cup (C-cups actually, and they are well-supported).

Terrorism: bad.

Number of New Year's Eves spent with Mr. Long-Suffering: Tonight marks 12.

TV Shows I am anticipating in the New Year: Chuck, Lost, The Big Bang Theory

TV Shows I watch while folding laundry (so much laundry): Something with Jenna Elfman as a knocked up single woman, Modern Family, Cougar Town (which is kind of depressing), Grey's Anatomy (and I don't find Ellen Pompeo attractive or talented), Desperate Housewives, Antiques Roadshow, Ask This Old House, and This Old House.

Speaking of (Ask) This Old House, Kevin O'Connor is the host. He's cute (in a boyish, handyman sort of way). I just read his bio, and I am shocked to learn that he is older than I am. He bought his first house after I did and his wife had their first child after I already had Chuckles, so I assumed he was young, but he's probably 7-9 years older than I am. Here's Kevin...



Bobo got this Fisher-Price Little People House Play Set for his birthday:



Bobo has a habit of putting the toy person on the left in his mouth. Chuckles wants to know why Bobo is trying to eat Kevin. That's right, Chuckles decided that the person on the left must be a toy version of Kevin O'Connor from (Ask) This Old House. I can see it.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Ladies' Man

In which I will make fun of something serious because that is how I roll.....

So, I was cleaning out Chuckles's back pack the other day. Two half-done worksheets on the letter Ss and a small booklet on Bill Bug's Big something-or-other. There was a little slip of yellow paper...an index card really. It said P236123. I thought, "Wow, that's pretty random, but look how nice those numbers are." I set it on the counter to go in with the recycling.

Last night I showed Mr. Long-Suffering the piece of paper. "Do you know what that is?" he asked.

"No."

"A girl gave Chuckles her phone number."

"What?"

"That 'P' is really a '9'."

"I don't believe you. I'm going to google to reverse look up that number."

And you know what? It was a phone number. A girl wrote her phone number down on a piece of paper and slipped it in to my son's back pack. Hussy. I'm sure now that Chuckles is destined to be a ladies' man. When the ladyfolk drone on and on (and on and on) about the things women talk about (about which men do not care), he can just smile and nod his head unable to hear what she is saying due to his hearing loss. Ladies Man!

Today is the kindergarten holiday party. It's really a Christmas party, but everyone is invited regardless of Christian-faith, so we'll call it a holiday party. With pizza. Chuckles was inordinately excited about this. Just jazzed. As I was laying out his clothes last night, he told me he wanted to look "cute" for the party.
"Sweetie, you're always cute."
"I want to look cute. And be pretty."
"OK."
"I want to dress up and wear my fancy Christmas clothes."
"OK."
"I want to wear my [sweater] vest."
"Alrighty then."
"And my (flailing arms wildly) shirt." I'm pretty sure the flailing was chirades for 'button-down'.
"Sure, OK, no problem."
"And my yellow, slippery Sponge Bob socks. Are they clean yet?"
"Yep, right here in the basket."
So he put his slippery socks on and proceeded to 'ice skate' on the hardwood floors until bed time.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Do you hear what I hear?

I took a little vacation day yesterday. I needed some time to get some things done and spend some time with the kiddos.

Monday night: mixed up sugar cookie dough and put it in the 'fridge to chill. Called one of Chuckles's friend's mother's to see whether she and her child would like to come over Wednesday morning to decorate cookies. They would! Score.

Tuesday night: Minimal straightening of house because I was just too tired. Rolled out the dough and baked the cookies. Chilled two Archer Farms Peppermint Nog bottles of coffee.

Wednesday morning: Entertained. The kids were not in to the decorating. They played nicely (albeit everything they touched from a piece of chalk to a finger was a gun...no pointing at people, nice, play nice! I said, "NICE!").

Wednesday noon: Simultaneously fed kids peanut butter sandwiches and applesauce to combat the sugar buzz they were on. Also, put Bobo down for a nap.

Wednesday afternoon: Took Charles to the audiologist. Do you hear what I hear? Not if you're Chuckles. He has a mild hearing loss in his right ear from recurrent ear infections. It's mild. I had pushed the pediatrician for the appointment since he didn't fit the standard (no ear tubes and no second line of antibiotic infections). But a mother knows. And I knew he had a hearing loss (although I had thought it would be more profound). The good news is his ear functions. The cilia hair cells are healthy, the tympanic membrane vibrates, his brain can interpret the signals it gets. We retest in 3-6 months (waiting on the call to find out) and monitor. In the meantime, we need to conserve and protect the hearing he does have. No loud toys, no headphones, no loud music, ear plugs when power boating and snowblowing, etc.

Also, the audiologist wants to see Bobo since bacterial meningitis can cause hearing loss (and he's not hitting his babbling milestones very well). So, I told her to write that in her report on Chuckles so that I could be referred back with the other kid. Yipee. Or not.

After I got home, I was fixing dinner and Bobo got in to the bag that was to go out in the recycling. He sliced his finger on a can of green beans (no salt added, but not organic). And he bled. Yikes. That was a lot of blood. So I applied pressure and he squirmed and BLOOD! And I put a band aid on it. He removed it. I put a better one on and all was right with the world until I noticed he was eating the band-aid. Ick. So, the bleeding stopped, I confessed all to his father, and then, he took 3 steps. And took 3 steps twice more. My baby's first steps! Woo Woo.

A Bannner Day.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Crappy Croup

So, Chuckles has not slept on the bathroom floor any more.

I did follow up with the morning nurse to make sure Chuckles was OK and didn't need to be seen (I'm still a little gun shy after the whole Bobo blood infection near-death thing). The daytime nurse knows our family and was very soothing. She gave me a list of 12 or so things to look out for with the croup. If any of these things came up, Chuckles would need to be seen by the ped.
  1. stridor
  2. blue lips
  3. speaking in tongues
  4. gasping for air
  5. irritability beyond being a 4-year old
  6. head spinning around
  7. retractions
  8. inability to catch breath
  9. not noticing that mom is eating ice cream and asking for some
  10. paranoia
  11. difficulty swallowing
  12. taking up with communists

So, all-in-all, Chuckles recovered nicely and here we are joyously awaiting the arrival of Santa Clause and all the oddly specific bounty he will bring unto us. And also, we are awaiting the Big Brown Truck (UPS) and the Amazon box that it will bring.

It's like the 12 days of Christmas around here. Every night at bedtime, I stick my hand up into the box on the closet shelf and pull out another Christmas/Winter book. Tonight featured a book I like to call "Broken Glass". It's a Snappy Sounds Holiday Pop-Up book whose idea of "twinkling" sounds like putting silverware in the garbage disposal or alternately, the sound a Christmas tree makes when it falls over during Festivus Feats of Strength.

Speaking of alternate holidays like Festivus, I take Christmas Cards very seriously. Very seriously. Once upon a time before I had kids, my cards were written, adressed, stamped, and waiting for the day after Thanksgiving to be mailed. Nowadays, I have to wait for the photos to come back before the cards go out, but I take them seriously nonetheless. There is a Newsletter which is called The SarcaSuffering Times (a combo of my last name and Mr. Long-Suffering's last name). It is not a special glow sheet, but more a take on our year, a listing of babies born, and a running tally of how my college's football team whomped on Mr. Long-Suffering's college football team and now we're going to a Bowl Game and you're not. Oh, right, where was I?

Anyway, I take my cards seriously. I send about 50 and I send for 3 years after I haven't heard from someone. Then, they are stricken from the list (unless they are super close family or friends, but old classmates and neighbors are stricken from the list. Stricken, I say.). This year, I got the BEST card I have ever gotten ever for any occasion. You may have heard me talk about my friend Carly before. Anyway, she's not usually much of a card sender, but this year, I got a little card with a sun on the front. Inside, it said: "Brighter Days Are Ahead. Celebrate Winter Solstice." I love this card. I love it more than the bunny with the hair dryer demanding the carrot nose from Frosty. I love it more than the female Frosties talking about the buxom Snowoman having falsies. I love it more than the card featuring Gristletoe that Mr. Long-Suffering gave me 12 years ago (which I still have somewhere but cannot find on the internet even though it was an e-card that I printed out...back when e-cards were novel). So, I love this card. It's from cafe press if you want some. I'm also a fan of Tiffany Ard's cards at omgseriously at etsy. Seriously. I would send them, but at a buck a card and the word motherfucking in them, I just don't think it's going to happen. But I do covet them. I guess I could have a subversive list where only certain people got them.

Moving on, someone asked about the weaning a couple of posts down. So, I have decided that I can either nurse 100% or not nurse at all, but I am no good at part-time nursing. I had wanted to stop pumping and then nurse while at home, and my supply dropped so much that I pretty much can't nurse at home unless I pump to keep it up, so we're almost done. I think I will keep the after work nursing and the middle of the night nursing, but the rest is bottle (either breastmilk from the freezer or formula). We're still pulling milk out of the freezer. You could say I was a little obsessed with having a good freezer stash. I think that doing that did two things for me. (1) It artificially inflated my milk supply so that when I went back to work, I was already used to making more than necessary so even though there was a supply drop, it was fine because it was still enough, and (B) Gave me the mental space not to freak out if I didn't pump enough one single day because heck, there are 8 gallons of milk in the deep freeze. Oh and (iii) It was just really cool having all the milk there. While I was pumping, I think I only used maybe 4 or 5 bags of milk. I can't believe it either, but I pumped 2x daily and took fenugreek sometimes and pumped on the occasional weekend and tried to conserve milk as much as possible. When I switched to 1x daily pumping, I still didn't use too much of the freezer stash because I switched Bobo from three 5-ounce bottles to two 6-ounce bottles, so a net decrease of 3 ounces daily.

Now, I'm trying to do some nursing, but I assume he gets little to nothing. But he's not a fan of food or the bottle so things here are rough with little sleep and a lot of crying (mostly not mine). Bottles of formula are given at bed time in the hope that he'll sleep. It's hard to tell what's what though because every day I look in his mouth and there's a new tooth (plus, I am pretty sure Bobo will be walking by Christmas...he's thisclose). Speaking of formula and sleeping at night, Have you seen the Enfamil RestFull formula that supposedly, I don't know, congeals in the baby's stomach for slower digestion? Does that work? It seems like a baby idea for a tiny baby, but I'd be willing to try it on an older kid like Bobo, who theoretically could be drinking cows' milk. So, anyway, congealing formula sounds gross and I don't think I'd try it on a baby, but you know, whatever, right?

So, in summation: Croup, Santanism, Santaism, Festivus, Solstice, Formula.

And Happy Hanukkah. My local TV station's pledge drive tells me it's the 3rd day (so is tonight the 4th night? I don't know), and our pledge prizes might make it in time for the 8th night, but if not, give them for Kwanzaa.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Little Bit of Crimson






I've never liked it when people do sickblogging. I get it. You have kids. They are snotty. They stick inappropriate things in their mouths. They eat the germs. You've all been ((TMI)) for 10 days and no one has the strength to ((more graphic TMI)) anymore. Understood. Mind you, I've done some sickblogging in my day, so I understand the need to chronicle the suck.






Sure, your kid just threw up (again) and you're out of crib sheets and are wrapping the mattress in a tablecloth until the dryer dings. I understand. But I don't necessarily want to hear about it. Unless you can make it funny.






There have been some random illnesses around these parts lately. Bobo had a one-off puke on Friday night. Mr. Long-Suffering and I were planning on going to Industrial Factory Prom on Saturday night (a work party, black tie, downtown, ballroom). The kids were to spend the night with my ILs over night, first time evah.






So, all day Saturday, after breakfast with Santa wherein they served sausage shaped like little hot dogs (sidenote: our neighbor two doors down was Santa at the Church, so when Chuckles got up on his lap, Santa knew his name (swoon). Also, Chuckles dressed himself that day so he looks like a ragamuffin in all the photos of he and Santa....and Bobo was beside himself with Woe. Woe is me. And he wouldn't part with the binky. He went home and took a meganap.), I get ready for the party. I made my first-ever updo. Exhibit UP.






So, Mr. Long-Suffering and I went to Industrial Factory Prom (wherein they do not crown a Prom King and Queen with hard hats). I ate a fancy dinner with wine and I only cut up my own food and the food was hot while I ate it. There was something called “Santa’s Sweet Table” and it was worth the hype. I drank too much, we got home late, I couldn't sleep. My breasts got full, I couldn't sleep, I then convinced myself that Bobo was very sick (after the puking and the long nap), was crying, and needed me. Then, I spiraled into a full blown panic attack. At the very first acceptable morning hour, we called the in-laws. Bobo was fine. He had a 6-ounce formula bottle before bed at 7 pm and they didn't hear a peep out of him until after 7 the following morning.



I was near tears. Glad he was fine and pissed that he NEVER sleeps through the night for us. And I felt bad that I blew my shot at a night of sleep by panicking and being hungover (the amount of wine I drank should not have left me with a hangover but two years of pregnancy and nursing will do that to you). So, I went back to bed, but my boobs still ached. I made Mr. Long-Suffering take me to McDonald's for my first-ever inaugural hangover McMuffin and then we went to the kids. They were fine.



Mr. Long-Suffering then embarked on a plan to figure out what happened at grandma and grandpa's (Pack-n-play, formula, universally warm bedroom temperature) and how can we repeat it here. I publicly called his efforts futile, but alas, the next night, another 6 ounce formula bottle and a warmer bedroom and Bobo slept through again. Huzzah. However, Chuckles woke up barking like a seal. Or a sea lion. I can never keep those straight. Six of one, half-dozen the other. Bark bark bark. He was so scared, couldn't breathe, started crying, hysterical would be a good word to use. I googled "croup". The internet told me to contact the doctor even if it was the middle of the night. So, I called. Manage symptoms, etc. So, Chuckles slept on the bathroom floor with the shower running steamy off-and-on all night. I got virtually no sleep taking care of that. So, another night with no sleep. And my panic. THe next night, Chuckles wanted to sleep in the bathroom again. Apparently, it was like a camping adventure. For him. Notsomuch for me.



They're all mostly better now. I guess. Until the other shoe drops. Perhaps the other show will be a peek-toe pump.



Monday, November 30, 2009

Oddly Specific

Thanksgiving was good. Again and again. I have now had that meal 5 times and it's still good. Note to self: Next year, invite more people. The answer is not: Make less food.

We've started talking about Christmas lately. The grandmas want to know what Chuckles and Bobo want for Christmas. Bobo is a baby. He has no idea what he wants. Chuckles, however, wants whatever is currently in Bobo's hands even if he just played with it 2 seconds ago and set it down or never really liked it anyway or it's a fricken baby rattle or teething toy. He wants it now. So, I told my mom that, and she laughed. She laughed. Thanks, ma.

Mr. Long-Suffering keeps lecturing Chuckles about how crashing his toy cars is chipping the paint and ruining them (at this point, I must note that Mr. Long-Suffering still has his Hot Wheels and they are near-mint, unpackaged). So, Chuckles told my MIL that he wants Lightning McQueen, King, Chick Hicks, etc. The only thing is he has all of those already. So, he told grandma he wants new versions so the paint won't be chipped?!?! Wrong lesson, Dad. I think Dad was trying to teach being gentle with your toys, and all Chuckles heard was that his toys were now flawed and he should get new (or he's planning on continuing to play with his old toys and show dad the news ones?).

After observing Bobo for a few days, I have decided he wants a pillow. I actually put a pillow in his crib when he turned one in the futile attempt to make him, for-the-love-of-everything-most-especially-me, sleep. So, we tried some pillows and the one he seems to like the best is mine. It is flat - very flat and thin (like my hair!) - with a cotton case. And it's not because that one smelled like me because all the pillows smell like me. So, the boy needs a pillow so I can get mine back. Or I need a pillow. He also needs a blankie. Mimi got him a blankie for his birthday and he seems to like it enough (although somehow he got himself tangled up in it last night and started screaming because he sat up, was completely covered over the head, had no idea where he was or how to get out), but it's winter weight. I can see the blankie becoming impossible next summer.

And lastly, I have a Croft+Barrow, sea foam green, 98% nylon, 2% spandex, V-neck sweater that was a Christmas gift from my SIL in 2003. It's really soft, very comfy, and machine washable. I wear it frequently. Chuckles covets the sweater. It's so soft he always wants me to wear the sweater so he can sit in my lap and be hugged by its softness. He has decided he wants that sweater, in red. So, now I'm off searching the interwebs for a fricken sweater. I would even buy the sweater in a ladies S and shrink it. How does one search for such a thing? I have googled the sweater, the manufacturer, I looked at Kohl's, I typed in "soft sweater red", but searching for clothes on the internet is like finding a needle in a haystack (and I tried ebay too).

'Tis the season of oddly specific Christmas requests.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Threw the Lunch

Yesterday morning as I was putting Chuckles into time-out for sass-mouth, the phone rang (at 6:57 am!). It was Mr. Long-Suffering. He left his lunch sitting on the wall in front of our house. Could I put it in the fridge for him or bring it to him?

Uhhh, OK. Since it was his 35th birthday on Monday and I hadn't gotten him anything tangible, I decided to bring it to him. But I wasn't going to go all the way to his office because his office trailer is down an alley that is not paved, covered in scrap and debris, it was raining, and I have a new car. So, I offered to drop it on the corner near his work...just pitch it out the window for him to collect when he had a chance. Instead, we met at the fire station and I rolled the window down, tossed his lunch bag at him, and promptly started crying. Apparently, my interactions with a smart-mouthed kindergartener had taken more out of me than I thought.

Chuckles says the following things that make my blood boil and make me want to go old-school and take up the spanking.
  • Upon being asked nicely to do something routine: No.
  • Upon being told something unremarkable but true (like you have chocolate birthday cake frosting on your mouth because I am awesome, made a cake, and shared it with you): I don't care.
  • Upon being told something, anything, that he didn't know: I know that.
  • Upon getting hugs and kisses from me after getting a special flip in the air during family wrestling time: I hate you.

Fortunately, I just finished a big dig and tapped a new well of patience and when I got to my wit's end, I turned it around and started working toward the other end, but man, this is exhausting.

But last night, I made four pies. One of which I brought to work today. The first thing I ate this morning was pumpkin upside-down praline crunch thing. It's like health food. Full of Vitamin A.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The Opposite of Turkey

So, Thanksgiving is Thursday. I am traditionally the person to host the day as we have a turkey fryer (and long tongs, fireproof gloves, and a fire extinguisher).

So, in honor of the fact that we'll be eating turkey for a week after (since we cook two turkeys, one fried, one roasted), this weekend I wanted to fix food that was the opposite of turkey. Saturday, I used up the last of a bottle of red wine and made tortellini with fruits de mer red sauce. Scallops, shrimp, chunks of lobster, calamari. On Sunday, I thought again, "What is the opposite of turkey?" And I came up with....drum roll....ham soup. I know it doesn't sound appetizing but it was so good. Mr. Long-Suffering and I each had three bowls. Chuckles was unimpressed but Bobo ate all my vegetables. So, what is ham soup?

One quart of frozen cherry tomatoes from my garden
5 carrots, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks
Two stalks celery (with leaves)
half a vidalia onion
1 T cumin
1 can vegetable broth and half a can of water
some lemon juice
4 bay leaves
some fresh ground pepper
(I did not use garlic, but you should...i just forgot)
about a pound of smoked, sprial sliced ham leftover from last Christmas cut into pieces
a can of beans (like garbanzo or navy or kidney or fava or cannelini)
5-8 ounces frozen leaf spinach

Add everything (except ham and spinach) into a large pot and cook for a few hours on super-low. Then an hour before you're ready to serve, add the ham (stil frozen is fine). Once it thaws, you can remove it, chunk it up, and then return to the pot. 15 minutes before dinner time, crank heat up to meadium and add the frozen spinach. Stir. Keep heating for the 15 minutes. Then turn heat off and serve with crusty bread (and butter).

And the menu for Thanksgiving (for 19, several of whom are small people) is:
A veggie tray with dip
One 15-pound fresh turkey, injected with creole butter and slathered with Cajun spice, fried in peanut oil
One frozen 11.6-pound pre-brined, injected turkey, open pan roasted with celery, carrot, onion, and garlic in the cavity, drippings retained for...
Gravy
Cresent rolls from the can
salad (from a bag)
mashed potatoes (with garlic, butter, and whole milk)
stuffing, two kinds. My MIL is making one from the organs, and I am making one with breakfast sausage. Neither of which will actually stuff the bird.
corn (because some kids said they wanted corn)
sweet potatoes, candied
sweet potatoes, plain boiled for the youngin'
green bean casserole with the French's onions, which were on Aisle 6 bottom shelf, by the green beans
Broccoli-Cream corn souffle with bacon on top...a total aside, but I saw they are making something called tur-bac-hen now and it's a chicken wrapped in bacon stuffed in a turkey. mmm, bacon.
Spinach-noodle ring with parmesan (but I am seving it in a casserole dish not a ring mold because I never get that to work and it tastes the same, regardless)
A cabbage and bread casserole that is an old family favorite. You make a roux and use cabbage water, and well, it doesn't sound good but it is. Oh yes, it is.
cranberry chutney
cranberry and fruit jello
Ocean Spray cranberry from the can turned out in a pretty dish with can marks still clearly visible
Two pumpkin pies with whipped cream (you have to make them two-at-a-time...it's the law)
A sweet potato pie (if I am so inclined and find a recipe)
A pecan pie (first time!) with rum

Did I forget anything...like to invite 90 more people over to eat the food?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

366 and burying the lede

Today, I took Bobo for his one-year well-baby visit. We could, if so inclined, turn the car seat around (we are not so-inclined but it's nice to have options). We can start on whole milk. He needs a lead test. He got 4 shots at the ped's office (Hep A, Hep B, Prevnar, and MMR...he did not get the varicella vaccine since he already had chicken pox). Then, we headed off (with Chuckles) to the county health department to get H1N1 vaccines.

The visit with the ped was nice. We've seen him a lot lately. We have good rapport. The ped was pleasantly surprised to see that Bobo was only 3 ounces down from his all-time high weight. That's back up 8 ounces from his recent illness-related low. Bobo weighs 23 pounds, is 30" long, and has a 46-cm head circumference (that's 18.1 inches). He is quite average in the 50th to 75th percentile for most things. The important thing is he has been fairly consistent in his growth throughout his life.

Toward the end of the visit, we touched on Bobo's recent illness. The ped said he just presented the case to his colleagues at some meeting because it was so rare and unusual. No one in attendance at whatever meeting it was had seen anything like it in years. And he reiterated how happy he was that we had brought Bobo in that Monday night. Back, before Prevnar, there were about 3,000 deaths per year from pneumococcal illnesses in children. Nowadays, there are about 20/year. So, incidences of bacteremia and sepsis are way down. And Bobo got it.

So, the other day (after Bobo had antibiotic-related explosive poop all over me right after his 1-year photo shoot while I was sitting at the computer picking poses), I went and bought a lottery ticket. I already had a streak of really good luck that week, so I figured I'd see if it carried over into games of chance. Good luck, you ask? Well, yes. We caught it early and Bobo recovered without issue. Good luck. Good medicine.

Monday, November 16, 2009

365

Bobo is one.

I am sitting at my desk (not crying) thinking, "Gosh, isn't it about that time of day when I pump?" And yet, here I am (not crying) and not pumping.

Bittersweet. That about sums up motherhood. (not crying)

Perhaps, when I have recovered my composure, we can go all PC Load Letter from Office Space on the pump. I really do hate pumping.

Yours Truly,
SarcastiCarrie (who is blinking really quickly and (not crying))

Thursday, November 12, 2009

This is What I Wanted, so Why Am I Sad?

I pumped for the last time (forever) yesterday. I hate the pump. Hated it. And yet, there I was pumping and sniffling. Why am I sad? Is it because my baby is growing up? Because, he still seems a lot like a baby to me. And he'll still get breastmilk exclusively for the next month or so (between nursing when I'm home and depleting my freezer stash). Is it because I secretly want a third baby? Because I don't think I really do (although if I happened to get pregnant, ha with the infertility, I would gladly accept another child).

Today is the first workday of not pumping (I left early and headed to the day care to relieve myself). I ended pumping on a Wednesday so I would only have two workdays of no pumping before the weekend (and it was just a really convenient time not to pump with my work schedule as it was this week). I guess I need to modulate my eating now. No more eating like a starved lumberjack truck driver. I won't be buring the extra 500-1,000 calories per day. Do I need to start exercising now? Can I still have thin mints (because I just ate 4 with a glass of milk)?

I sterilized all the pump parts and put them in a box and now what? I think I am just going to put it in the basement and let my lack of decision be a decision unto itself.

T minus 2 days until the first birthday party. Then, 2 more days until the birthday, and one day after that for the 1-year well-baby visit to the pediatrician, where I assume they will tell me to introduce whole milk in a cup (although truth be told, I gave him some in a sippy the other day...he was unimpressed).

....
By the way, I think I forget to tell you that Bobo did not actually have the Hamthrax. Once all the blood tests came back, the cultures showed a strep pneumo infection (and he had sepsis). That's basically pre-meningitis, but really really bad. Like the kind of thing if we hadn't treated it as aggressively as we did that could have k*lled him. I cannot bring myself to type it because it's so ludicrous and absurd. They vaccinate kids against strep pneumo these days so the odds were against it, but the Prevnar vaccine only protects against the 5 most common strains, and Bobo had one of the others (one of the antibiotic-resistant strains). Seeing just how sick he was and how scared our pediatrician (and the nursing staff) was, I am so glad for vaccines because lots of kids have been saved this infection when it is caused by the 5 most common strains. And heck, we've been saved from having one of those as well.

I don't want to go all pro-vaccine lobby on you here (not after I set people off over health care in that other post...although, it is nice to get comments), but I have had sick kids and I have had a kid sick with some vaccine preventable (chicken pox, anyone) illnesses. It's rough. Being the one to teach your kid to ask for the bucket before he throws up on the couch is hard work and I don't wish that on anyone.

I have no idea where I am going here. I am really glad both of my kids are OK (they've both had sepsis now....how lucky is that? The answer: not very.). I'm really happy that rocephin exists (and I have no idea whether I spelled that correctly and I am way too lazy to look it up right now) because it's been the wonder drug that works wonders for us. I'm really glad that we're not used to babies and children dying the way we were in my grandparents' (and to a lesser extent, my parents') day.

....
Special Bonus Info
I want you to know that I am going to see Bon Jovi live in concert on Friday, July 30th. 2010 (how did that happen?). I am already trying to figure out which pair of my jeans I can tight roll and I'm saving up carbon credits to offset the Aquanet I will use to achieve my Mall Hair. I may have to take a photo for you.

Friday, November 06, 2009

I asked for this, didn't I?

So, I see a couple posts down here I asked Bobo to take up explosive pooping. He has done this. With gusto. Unfortunately, as a trade-off, he has not given up the night-waking and if anything, he has redoubled his efforts to end nighttime sleep as we know it.

It's not his fault. He had a secondary bacterial infection with his swine flu. He had strep pneumo serotype unknown which led to sepsis and bacteremia. It was a bad scene at our house from Monday through Thursday morning. Bad scene. With a capital Z. Bad. Cultures have been taken and re-taken. Blood has been drawn. Many different kinds of oral and injectible antibiotics have been administered (in addition to his Tamiflu). Poor kid looks pretty rough. But, he's on the mend, I guess. I hope. Now, we just wait and see if the rest of us get it. Cross fingers.

I have a friend coming to clean my house. Yes, I know, I am such a plutocrat I cannot clean my own freakin' house. I get it. We've been sick. And have jobs and kids and well, I have justified it enough to myself. So, anyway, I am using a friend for this because my regular, occasional cleaning lady doesn't do evenings and weekends and that's about the only time I have to let her in. So, I have a friend doing it. And that's kind of weird, because we live in squalor and I don't really want my friend to think we're dirty (but I am so beyond the point of pre-cleaning before someone comes to clean...I must straighten and put things away so she can find the dirty surfaces to clean...that is enough for me). But, I did feel it necessary to warn her that there is hair all over our house (cat and human) and not the nice, clean, inoocent, blonde straight kind of hair either...the dark, curly kind. But I swear, we're not a houseful of dirty nudists. My husband just has a lot of arm and leg hair that falls off. I swear. (I am reminded and horrified of a Simpsons episode where Marge wins a cleaning lady and finds it necessary to pre-clean in a major way before they get there and judge her.)

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Knock Knock

Knock Knock
Who's there?
Hog.
Hog who?
Hog Flu.
Wait, no, that's not right.

Knock Knock
Who's there?
Pig.
Pig who?
Pig Flu.
Wait, no, that's not right.

Knock Knock
Who's there?
Swine.
Swine who?
Swine Flu.
Yep, that's right. Just about sums up 2009 for me.

So, it's Bobo. He narrowly avoided hospitalization yesterday...one more ounce of weight loss and into the hospital he would go for treating dehydration. He's napping now. We went in for observation this morning. He goes again this afternoon and again tomorrow. Wow. Yes. Whew. Uhhh, this is contagious, right? So, I could, uhhh, catch it? Ack. OK then. Moving along.

Chuckles is learning to spell. To encourage this, we did words that sound like pirates talk and focused on words with ARRRRGH sounds in them (art, car, mar, bar, mart, bart, cart, etc). Anyway, he figured out how to spell FART. And did you know that fart is the funniest word in the whole world. I mean, if I walked into the kindergarten class and said fart, boogers, poopie, toilet, I think we'd have to call the paramedics to bring oxygen to the kids (who to my knowledge would need that because of their uncontrollable laughter not because they have H1N1). I told his kindergarten teacher about how he spells that word and she was impressed. I described the word as "Starts with F ends with TOOT." She has since seen Chuckles in action with the word and the other kids think he is so cool and smart. So, yes. Next I might teach him to spell snot. He has a reputation to maintain.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A long way to get to nothing

I spent three hours in a tiny little room in a meeting with a woman whose daughter was home from school (with her Dad) because she had swine flu. Swine Flu?!? Now, I'm not terribly alarmist. We've had our fair share (and someone else's fair share too) of illness at Maison Sarcastique. But I would like to catch a break here for a bit and just not get sick for a week, ok? OK?!? Do you hear me world??? So, please, let us not contract the swine flu right now.

Also, Dear Bobo, not sleeping is your brother's trick. Get your own thing. Something that doesn't invovle me being out of bed between 10 pm and 6 am. Explosive pooping would be fine, if a little laundry intensive.

Last night, as I was tucking Chuckles in to bed and giving him a little kiss, he said, "I love you." Swoon. Swoon, I say. Then he added, "And Megan." Megan? My baby has his first little crush. When he and Megan were 2.5they played Homeliving (which is like "house" for the 21st century) and had five babies who all went poopie at the same time and they ran out of diapers and had to go to the store for diapers for their five babies who were poopie. So, there is history with Megan. She'd make a fine daughter-in-law. But, next year when Big School starts, they're in different schools.

Which reminds me....when I was 3 and 4, I went to co-op preschool at a local church. There was one little boy there, Matthew Springer (don't tell me if you look him up on Facebook, I prefer ignorance), with whom I used to hold hands while running across the field to the playground. One year, he (his mom?) sent me a Christmas card in the mail. In the mail. I got mail through the slot in the door addressed to me. When preschool ended, and we went off to kindergarten, he went to a different school (probably even a different district since we didn't reconnect in Middle School). When the neighborhood turned, everyone moved away anyway.

So, I went to Middle School, moved between 7th and 8th grades to a neighborhood known for impeccable schools, and went to fabulous High School. Now, I was just a girl from the South Side going to a fancy high school in a nice neighborhood. The clothes, the cars, the money, the no after-school jobs. I did not fit in. When it came time for college, I was glad to be done with HS. I just didn't fit in, but Fancy HS had opened my eyes up to a larger world with college and the things that education could do for me. So, I opted not to go to State Univerity which was known as the 8-year HS plan since literally hundreds of people from my graduating class would go there. Instead I opted for a small, private university (which stupidly, I did not realize would be a lot like HS with the clothes, cars, and cash).

I went off to university and fell in love, hard, with a guy from the South Side who was also paying his way through university. He had gone to one of the better Catholic HS and gotten into elite college as well (South Side kids make good, they call it). So, we were in love, and one day, we were sitting somewhere smoking (!) when a guy walked up and said, "Hi" to my love. So, my love, being the most mannerly and gentlemanly sort, stood up to shake the guy's hand and introduced him to me. "Carrie," he said, as that was my name back then as well, "I'd like you to meet Matt Springer. We went to St. Catholic's together." It was my Matthew. My Matthew. Mine, from 15 years earlier. But he was short, now. And not nearly as attractive as a 19-year old as he was as a 4-year old. He didn't remember me. At all. Not even when prompted. I asked whether he went to Co-op, which was a yes, and did he remember me? No, but it wasn't all bad; he did write for the alternative newspaper (at elite university, the "alternative" paper was the conservative/libertarian paper, the FoxNews of the undergraduate publishing set).

So, perhaps, Chuckles and Megan can reunite someday.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Nothing was received in exchange for this post/review but if you want to send wine, we can talk

Oh, Dearest blog, how I have been neglecting you. Sometimes, I think I was a better blogger when I was all angsty and infertile and TTC and an unwilling stay-at-home-mom. Probably true. Happiness makes for boring blogging.

Saturday night, Mr. Long-Suffering and I split a bottle of Luigi Bosco malbec. And I rave. It was good. It was a gift, so I am not sure of its price point (although I assume around $15). It was better with food than had solo and it needed a few minutes in the glass to breathe, but other than that, I have nothing but good things to say about this wine. We finished the bottle. Two people over about 4-5 hours. Not a difficult task, really. And red wine….it’s like health food.

We did some half-arsed father-led weaning on Thursday night. It was a flaming failure. Baby wants to eat and will fuss and cry for hours and hours overnight. I have made the executive decision to feed the child overnight. I know…I am brilliant. I’ve always said my kids haven’t read the textbooks. And Chuckles decided to strip naked in the night and walk around (and then got himself re-dressed in different clothes…very odd, but he was awake not sleepwalking as he remembered and recounted the whole thing including the rationale for said fashion show in the morning). Both kids got their flu vaccines Friday and Bobo took a record-breaking nap afterward (including a location change, which doesn’t usually work for him).

Last week was Columbus Day or Italian-American Marriage Heritage Day (as I have taken to calling it since I married an Italian-American). We took the kids on commuter rail to the City and slid down the Picasso. A good time was had by some. We rode the double-decker choo choo home. Both kids fell asleep in the car on the way home.

Now, a nifty list of places I have nursed (either child):
On the commuter rail
In the Catholic Church
Backyard of my home
Front yard of my home
Bathroom of my home
In my car in various locales
Beach
Grocery store
Millennium Park
Babies R Us
The pediatrician’s office (and the urgent care & the hospital) … and they’re always so embarrassed…dude, you’re doctors
The bathroom at work
In a moving car (everyone was buckled….the joy of the rear-facing car seat and the sag)
During a concert (to be fair, the music was The ScribbleMonsters)
At a restaurant while I was eating (once with my FIL across the table from me)
Day Care
On a boat
At the swimming pool
The homes of various friends and relations (some more welcoming than others, none openly hostile thankfully)
Library

The weaning is coming. I’m not a fan of the concept. But I am ready to be done with the pump. So, if you’ve done this successfully, let me know. Here’s my plan:
I will switch from pumping twice daily to once daily starting today. I will continue sending bottles to day care by dipping in to my freezer stash. I’m not sure what I’ll do on the weekends since my supply will have dipped. Do I just nurse normally on the weekends? Bobo is 11-months old. Then, when it gets closer to the year mark, I will just stop pumping at work. Then, uhhh, I guess what? I have no idea. I plan on continuing to nurse in the evenings and mornings as long as we’re both still game. Then, what do you do on weekends, again? Should I just….what, I have no idea. I assume when I reduce pumping or stop pumping that the supply will drop and he’ll get less. Will he still want to nurse on the weekends, in the evenings, and in the morning. Is there even enough that it counts as nourishment? A little help here.

On my last post, I got a comment (YAY, comments) from someone who wanted to send me a review copy of a book (YAY, free stuff). But I am not accepting it for two reasons (possibly more):
  • I don't have time to read a book, let along implement strategies for dealing with childish behavior.
  • I am a semi-anonymous blogger and accepting a book would require me giving out my name and an address. Some address. And I don't have one of those fancy UPS Store addresses, so no.
  • A book is not wine, it's not even food. Free food, I would probably take.

I'm not really a people-pleaser, so I don't feel bad about turning it down (actually, I am not turning it down, I'm just not doing anything with the offer except blogging about it). I'm sort of excited though because this is the first time anyone has ever offered me anything via the blog. Oh, by the way, in case it wasn't abundantly clear, I love Max Factor lipcolor and no one is giving me anything to say this. Also, food and wine and good and I pay for all of that myself (unless a real-life friend gives it to me for an actual occasion).

Friday, October 02, 2009

Procrastination is Usually My Enemy

Well, life got in the way and I didn't get around to dropping off the check and registration form for a gym class that starts tomorrow until 7:30 this morning. And they're full. Go figure. Chuckles loses out because I couldn't get Mr. Long-Suffering to commit to a gym class in the fall (when he says we should be playing outside but with torrents of rain falling, I am not sure how that's going to work). Anyway, I failed and Chuckles suffers the consequences (although honestly, these consequences were pretty minor and this failure it not one in a long string of disappointments). Lesson learned.

Maybe I'll take him to funflatables instead. Or I think it's National Fire Prevention Week so the fire house is open. Maybe we'll just go there.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

This is What it Takes to Get Me to Post

Boring kid update: Bobo has pink-eye. Uck. What is going on here? Chuckles started kindergarten and he adores it. Adores it. He's doing fine. He's on the smaller side, but he's reading now and writing and the Homework. Oh my. It's fun and hard and fun and no naps ever again. He went to the Apple Orchard and I packed his first ever school lunch in a bag with an apple tree on it and they left it behind so he got a hot dog for lunch at the orchard and he was so happy and then he ate lunch. From a bag. For dinner. Low key, easygoing, lunch fail. There is a field trip to the Pumpkin Patch coming up. I will duct tape his lunch to his arm.

OK, why am I posting today of all days? Because I work for a giant faceless corporation with offices all over the world and they are hosting a contest. And I can no longer contain the sarcasm. The sarcasm, it burns. Here is the crib notes version of the email I got:
Giant Multi-National Corporation is hosting its first International New Year’s
E-card drawing/art contest, open to our employees’ children and the youth in the
communities where we have operations. An International New Year's card is
like a Christmas card, but we can't use the word Christmas because we wouldn't
want to show favoritism to the Judeo-Christian tradition, and heaven forbid we
call it a Holiday Card because everyone knows that's code for X-mas
anyway. The theme for the 2009 contest is "Feel the Joy of Sharing" and
artwork should demonstrate cultural diversity and a sense of
community. Feel free to use all the shades of brown in the 128 box
of Crayola Crayons when drawing the Sharing.

In other news, I planned Bobo's First Birthday Party last night. Hot dogs, hamburgers, and S'mores in a brand new fire pit in our backyard two weekends before Thanksgiving or something. I am happy about the First, but sad because, you know, my baby is growing up. BUT! Only 7 more weeks of pumping. I am thrilled. I might actually go an entire year feeding the baby only breastmilk (and baby food) with no formula. That would be something. I might not make it the whole year, and that's OK too. The pumping output is really tapering off, so I am taking fenugreek, and I pump on weekends sometimes now, and I dropped day care bottles from 2 or 3 to 2 only (I only send two now). So, I've done all I can. He takes 2 five-ounce bottles on weekdays, and we'll see what happens. He crawls real tummy up crawling now. And he learned to do that the same day he got his two bottom teeth. It was a busy sleepless time at our house. He also started walking along on furniture over the weekend and that's something too. I'm pretty sure he's all gross motor skills all the time.

Last night, Chuckles was sitting on his bed working on his homework (red, green 5-9, and Tt) and we were chasing Bobo around and throwing him in the air and dangling him by his feet and Chuckles just kept chugging along at his homework. Chuckles is the guy at Woodstock trying to find a shower to wash the mud off so he can make it to class on time while everyone else strips naked and slides in the mud while cutting class.

I am thisclose to ditching the Mirena IUD. I am still spotting. It's been like 9 months. I am so over the mini-pad. I will wait until I wean to see whether that helps (although truth be told, at a year, I only plan to give up pumping...I am not stopping nursing). That is all on that topic.

Abrupt topic shift: Health Care Reform. I am against it. As I am sure you knew. I really don't think health care or access to health care is an enumerated power or an inalienable right. Just don't think so. Sorry. It is a service and like other services, my libertarian heart thinks everyone needs to pay for their own. I am fine with a little Medicaid here and there as a temporary thing, but really, not feeling the low for health care. I am fine with high deductible cost-sharing plans too. I happen to have had good-to-great insurance for most of my life, but I am willing to have higher co-pays and cost-sharing or a high-deductible plan so that I shop around for cost-effective treatments. I am fine with that. I'm a smart consumer. But I don't have many chronic conditions and I am not gravely ill, so my perspective is, as always, governed by my own experiences (note: I did buy Cobra once and it was not cheap and I was young and healthy and could've bought insurance on the open market a whole lot cheaper but I was too lazy to investigate and I was not going to risk ruin on going insurance-less).

Oh, and I believe that you and your doctor should make your health care decisions together (which is a really cryptic thing to say but it does mean keep insurance and government out of the exam room and out of the equation...whatever the decision: end of life care, abortion, pain management, birth control, when to stop labor, when to resuscitate a premature infant, VBAC, c-section, etc).

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Quarantine

We are finally out from quarantine. Bobo is better. It was chicken pox. Eventually four of the eight babies at day care contracted it. One parent also contracted chicken pox, and I hear she is miserable. Patient Four is still out of day care after a week and a half. I'd say excluded from child care for two weeks is a pretty sure bet. We're not totally out of the incubation period yet so more could come down with it still.

Mr. Long-Suffering and I took turns working from home during the illness. Chuckles stayed in day care so we could actually work during naptime. I got a solid 6 hours of work done per day. Not bad, but exhausting.

Quarantine was awfully boring. I'm glad I don't like in the age of diphtheria. I don't think I could handle the yellow card. I took Bobo in the car to drop Chuckles off at day care (but he stayed in the car...I was right there 15 feet away at the door...still outside). I took him for walks in the great outdoors, but mostly, we just stayed home. Boring. My mom and dad came to visit to break up the monotony. My in-laws avoided us like we had the plague. My mother-in-law claims she's never had the chicken pox, but both her kids did and she has worked in a school for 20 years, so she's either had it or has super immunity some other way. So, we were pretty isolated. I suppose I could've updated the blog, but I felt isolation was the safest course of action. For you. I'm trying to protect you, my one blog reader. Don't you feel special now?

Eight years ago today, I wore a really pretty silver dress and a little tiara thing and I got hitched to Mr. Long-Suffering. Tonight, I plan on trying my wedding dress on to make sure it still fits. Then, if he's lucky, I might take the dress off. Who knows? On a weeknight, even.

The weather turned colder, and I started cooking again. The tomatoes are in the garden and I made a pot of chili. I also made chicken marsala for the first time ever and nom, nom, nom, can't stop eating to write...it was so good. The recipe is long and easy and one of the ingredients is Holland House cooking Marsala. Who knew? I also made garlic mashed potatoes with potatoes from Chuckles's little garden plot. He found digging in the dirt for "prizes" to be a lot of fun. And I turned a 2-foot long zucchini into 48 muffins. Mmmmm. Some of them had chocolate chips.

Oh, and I crock potted a chicken in just water and made homemade babyfood with chicken, broccoli, and sweet potatoes in the food processor. It tastes like a little slice of Thanksgiving heaven. Bobo wants nothing to do with it. I'll eat it.

Speaking of Bobo...when is he going to stop eating over night? He was so over that, and now here we are again. I guess I don't mind too much as long as he sleeps through the night every once ina while. Again, speaking of Bobo, he is master of the army crawl and thinks sitting it for losers. All teh cool kids are standing this season. And so, he stands. All the time. Which is fine because I don't hang out behind him. He has to do it all on his own.

Now since I'm all about equal time, I will tell you that I requested they evaluate Chuckles to see whether he should be in kindergarten. He's no where near the birthday age cut-off. He turned 4 in May. He just seems so ready. So, I asked for an eval. And if they say yes, he starts the Tuesday after Labor Day. And if they say no, that's fine too. And if the say yes and it doesn't work out, that's ok too. Easygoing. He asked me to teach him to read and I just don't have the time. Literally. It's horrible. With meals, baths, nursing, and other things that absolutely must get done while both kids are awake, I do not have the time to teach Chuckles to read. So, I am outsourcing it I guess. Oh well. We'll see how it goes and what happens. I'm letting it unfold in an organic way. Or something lowkey and laid back.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dottie

Bobo has chicken pox. He seems mostly unaffected although he would like company in the wee hours. He goes to the doctor tomorrow for confirmation, but if it clucks like a chicken and uhhh somethings like a pox....

Patient Zero was an infant at the day care. Patient One, also an infant at the day care, took ill 5 days after Patient Zero. Patient Two, Bobo, developed his pox between 7 and 8 am this morning, one week after Patient Zero.

Supposedly, nurslings and children under one year don't get it as bad as older kids (or adults), but I hear that Patient Zero had it bad. Poor kid.

Oh well...I thought you should know.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Full Circle

First things first: It was hives as an allergic reaction to Amoxicillin which was treating Baby's Second Ear Infection. His airway was not compromised, and the hives are resolving.


Now onto the main event.

Twenty years ago it was 1989. I think Family Ties was popular as was Guns-N-Roses. My hair was big and so was Kip Winger's. My family had not a lot of money, but I still wanted to be stylish. I had a very large, white pleather hand-me-down purse with only a small ink stain on it. I had a jean skirt. So, my purse wasn't Liz Clairborne and my cologne was Designer Imposters' Primo (for Giorigio), but I was making do.

Everyone was wearing IOU Sweatshirts and Guess? jeans. Other places Cavaricci jeans were big, but in my town, it was Guess? I had one pair of hand-me-down Palmetto jeans which were almost as good as Guess? but they were white and blue pinstripe. I couldn't exactly pull off wearing those every day. I thought about cutting the tag off of the back and sewing it onto my Chic jeans.

One day, my mom, realizing I needed more pants, came home with a new pair of jeans for me. I was so excited. Would they be extra-high-waisted with pleats and taper to a nice, tight ankle...maybe with zippers on the ankles? Well, no. They were not.

They were inky blue whereas I wanted something lighter, something paler, something... splotchier. Perhaps something that had been splattered with bleach or washed with acid. Yes, acid washed, perhaps. They had straight legs. I wanted something more tapered, possibly improbably tapered. Tapered so much you could barely get your foot out of the bottom, possibly making those little ankle zippers a true necessity. I wanted something I could tight roll without too much hassle. I wanted something that would really set my hips off from the rest of me. They had a flat front. I wanted pleats. Lots of big pleats to add extra fabric to my mid-section, really setting my hips off again. Apparently, I wanted to look like a peg-legged pirate. But worst of all, they were from K-Mart. K-Mart did not make Guess? jeans. K-Mart did not sell Z. Cavariccis. K-Mart! Was my mother trying to kill me?

I'm sure I sulked. I am sure I whined. And I know for absolute sure that I washed those jeans in hot hot hot water with detergent and a hint of bleach trying to get them to lighten up a little. And I figured if I used safety pins, just so, that I could get them to tight roll into a taper. And who would notice my tight rolling when I was wearing three pairs of awesome color-coordinating slouch socks? And I figured if I wore my longest aqua blue sweatshirt, maybe no one would notice the lack of pleats and lack of name brand on the pocket. Maybe. I'm pretty sure everyone noticed.


Flash forward to this morning as I was getting dressed in my Kohl's jeans. They are a dark inky blue with a flat front and a wide leg. And I am happy about this. They might be considered "mom jeans". And I needed to make sure I didn't accidentally tuck my boobs into them as I was zipping up. Other than that, all good.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

What my blog would look like if I twittered (or tweeted)

I have a co-worker. We email during the day. Some excepts. I'll be SC and he'll be CoW.

SC: Woo hoo. And Jersey Boys was good and the Bean yesterday was good (but we got caught in traffic because of some bike race).

CoW: Hot damn, I’ll probably never see Jersey Boys but it’s good to know. That bike race was pretty sweet! They were flying through the closed course at 32 mph for 50 miles. If that was the only thing you got stuck behind then you had an easy trip. I played a new game this yesterday, bike polo. It’s just like polo but on bikes obviously. It gave me a little bit of a beating when I tried it on my bmx bike with out a hand to brake with or a seat to balance more on. It was so much fun though.

SC: It took us ONE HOUR to go FIVE BLOCKS thanks to that bike race. We could see the entrance to the parking garage and just. Couldn’t. get. There. We could abandon car and get on with it already, but no. Bike polo. I saw some guys in the US training for elephant polo by sitting on the roofs of SUVs (and playing polo, obviously).

CoW: You couldn’t have gone to a different parking garage? Come on, you know the city. How exactly does sitting on to of a SUV help you train for Elephant polo? You aren’t controlling anything from the top of an SUV just swinging a mallet.

SC: I was gridlocked. I couldn’t go anywhere. At all. Someone else “drives” the elephant for you while you play polo so it’s probably very similar.

CoW: Haha I’m going to be a jackass here and say you did travel 5 blocks so there was 2-4 chances for you to turn off. That is why I don’t drive in the city, it’s just a hassle and not nearly as fun. I feel a little let down that you are steering the elephant at the same time but it is still pretty funny. I wonder if there are any elephant collisions like there were with bikes.

SC: Michigan avenue was closed, so any turns to the east were not permitted. All one-way streets. So, perhaps one chance to turn and go west but there was construction on Adams. Very booo-urns.

CoW: You don’t seem bitter enough. Can you imagine my frustration when it took me 3 hours to get home once this last winter? 2.5 hours of that was within the last 6 miles. We really need to get going with those matter transporters already.

SC: If you get a matter transporter, will you let me borrow it? I want to beam myself to the day care a couple of times a day just to check in. And I’d like to see my sister in Vegas occasionally too.

CoW: If you had matter transporters we wouldn’t even have to live around here to get to work. I’d be some place warm to get out of these damn winters! I could imagine that the birth rate would also increase since it would make booty calls so much easier.

SC: And childbirth would be a snap because, you know, just beam the baby out.

CoW: If we weren’t already over populated this would do it. Won’t some one please think of the children.

SC: Mrs. Lovejoy. I got the reference. Well, it’s Tuesday now. That is all.

CoW: If this week was like last week it would have been Wednesday already. You got to love it some times when your mind is a day behind the actual date. I tried to run a query over night and came in to find nearly a dozen ODBC call failures. I don’t know why one wasn’t enough for an unmanned computer. I think I’m going to camp at the Michigan dunes this weekend. I’ve never been and it could be dandy. That is all.

SC: Day care called. Someone needs to go get small. He has hives. What the H? I am staying at work. I had someone call secret husband on the radio because his cell wasn’t getting reception. Go get your hive-y kid. All my queries have been working today. Yay. I wrote a new one and learned about a new table.

CoW: What the hell is with smalls lately? Jesus. Did you have some one call him on the radio and say call your wife or pick up your hive-y kid? Either of those would have been really entertaining to hear. [redacted work stuff involving computers and databases]

SC: No, I had him call dave on the phone and then dave told him to “call carrie” and my husband, the truly devoted, said, “Carey who?”.

CoW: Secret husband has put me to shame though since not only are you his wife but he’s known you for a hell of a lot longer. [story redacted about this time he was pulling into the car hole when his cell rang and it was his not-quite-girlfriend (twenty-somethings and their texting and girlfriends and unfettered single lives)]

SC: I really do enjoy that you use the phrase “car hole” and I totally know what you meant, Moe. And now I know that Burb girl has a name. Secret does win points by going home to be with hive-boy…who is going to the doctor this afternoon for the third time since Wednesday.

CoW: Calling it the car hole only seems fitting even though there are 6 times as many bikes as cars in there. I thought I told you burb girls name was Nicole before. If I did or didn’t it doesn’t matter too much because nicknames for people is so much more entertaining between us any way. Can small make it 4 visits by tomorrow?

SC: Oh, man, I hope not. Those visits aren’t free, you know. So, [redacted name of gossipy coworker] called me yesterday to see if I had any gossip as to why one of the pre-K teachers just didn’t come back one day (fired, quit in frustration, etc). I had no idea. I had just assumed Miss X was on summer vacay. So, now, I must get the scoop.

CoW: What, isn’t it like a $20 co-pay? Are you telling me I should start some sort of savings plan for a kid, those little buggers just seem to take it all. How well do you know that she really isn’t out on vacation or maybe even a family emergency? I had no idea [redacted name of other coworker] would be such a gossiper.

SC: Well, I don’t know, but I can find out (and [redacted name of foreign-born coworker whose child goes to day care with Chuckles] can’t because the subtleties of the language and appropriate volume levels for gossip are too much for her). And yes, start saving now. They’re expensive.

CoW: Haha one day she will learn… Man, I don’t even think I have to experience having my own kid yet to know you aren’t lying when you say kids mess everything up. [boring work stuff redacted]

SC: Doctor appointment in 20 minutes. What do you think is wrong with hive-boy?
(a) Mumps or chicken pox
(b) Allergies
(c) Nothing
(d) eczema
(e) other
I’m leaning toward C, although b with a hint of d is always a possibility.

CoW: I’m thinking B myself. I have a feeling that the rash he had the other day could be related to it is some way, maybe detergent or something.

SC: Definitely not lotion, soap, or detergent because #1 son is also rash-boy so all irritants were removed from our house in 2005. He is wearing a new shirt today though and I didn’t wash it first, so maybe the sizing they put in the new clothes (although he wore a shirt out of the same package last week without incident).

CoW: Chuckles is not Bobo though so how can you rule out some sort of reaction? Couldn’t it possibly develop from coming into contact with something at day care? I’m going to make you paranoid if I keep on going.

SC: Chuckles used to get rashy at day care and I would pick him up and by the time I got him home, there’d be nothing. ‘twas maddening. Their carpet cleaner was causing him to react so whenever they set him down, he’d explode in red. Very pretty. My boys are so sensitive. Have I made you look at pictures of my boys lately?

CoW: See maybe it’s something just like that, it happens. Are your kids Irish at all? The Irish seem sensitive to me. Bobo looks like a very photogenic little guy and he’s already picking up some cute girls. Chuckles has some pretty good posses there too I must say.

SC: I am Irish, therefore, my children are Irish as well. Doctor's report: It’s either allergic or viral, they don’t know. He’s off amoxicillin and on Zyrtec now. I’m home with him again tomorrow. He has to go back if it's worse tomorrow. Dang!



This is the reason you don't get more posts from me. I have nothing. [boring stuff about my life and what I ate redacted]

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Nike Plunge

I have a new theory since having Bobo. Just do it. It might be awful. It might be fine. You'll never know unless you try.

With Chuckles, I tried. And I failed. And then we stopped doing until he was older. We just stayed home. He always needed to eat and never slept when we went anywhere. It was sort of miserable. A few times we left him with his grandparents. We would hurry back in 2 hours. He wouldn't take a bottle, and well, it's a good thing my memory fails me because it was a whole lot of suck.

So, since this is all I knew of babies, I was shocked. Shocked! That other parents went away for the weekend sans child. Or went to a liesurely dinner. Or a movie. Or to a friend's house for the evening. Or on vacation and came back more relaxed than when they left. It was so foreign to me.

Fast-forward to today. Well, last night actually. Mr. Long-Suffering and I lef the kids at home with Mimi and Papa and went to see Jersey Boys. At intermission, I called home. Chuckles was alseep (without issue). Bobo was still awake and quite happy to be watching the toys dangling over his head. He didn't take a bottle but seemed fine. I was concerned since it was 9:30 (2 full hours after Bobo's typical bedtime and he is still a little sick). I decided it didn't matter and whatever. So, I didn't call again and we left right after the show. Bobo was asleep when we got home. I guess after I prodded her about the sleep, Mimi gave it another try and Bobo went right down. He woke up at 2 am to eat, and then at 6:20 I brought him to my bed to nurse again (and I assume he went back to sleep...I did, at least).

Even though I am so tired (I was up after midnight and out after dark), I am invigorated. I wore heels. ANd jewelry (I nursed Bobo right before I left and he was transfixed. He'd never seen me in a necklace before.). For 6 hours, I was a grown-up. It was all kinds of awesome.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Ask Moxie Chicago Meet-Up

The AskMoxie Chicago meet up is this Sunday, July 26th at 2pm at the Bean in Millenium Park. I'm planning on being there so if you hang on Ask Moxie (or here), come on down and say, "Hi."

If you stalk me though, please be nice.

I told my husband I was taking the kids and going downtown to meet strangers I met on the internet. He was unaumsed. I think that's the right way to put it. I told him I'd bring my mace and somehow he pictured a giant spiked, metal ball on a chain. That ought to go over huge on the train.

Anyway, I will bring at least Bobo, the nursling, because the nursing and the pump hating. I may also bring Chuckles so he can go in the fountain. And I might bring Mr. Long-Suffering since you know, four hands and whatnot. But I swear, he'd be in the background holding kids and keeping them from flinging themselves out onto Michigan Avenue.

Shannon says she's coming in from Homewood (I'll be coming in to Randolph Street Station on the South Shore, so if you're coming in on Metra, we'll, like, totally be at the same train station). I'd like to give a shout-out to Homewood as I lived there from 1989 - 1994 (and had that as my "permanent addess" until 1997). I also graduated from Homewood-Flossmoor HS. Class of 1994. And I went on Facebook and looked at the Class of '94 group and well, huh, that was weird. My real question is: Why are there people on that Facebook Group that did not actually graduate in 1994? Are there fans of '94? 'Cause really, we weren't all that great. Although, I think our prom was at the Drake, which was quite cool (or maybe the Palmer House...I have no idea).

Anyway, I'll be at the Bean. Or at least I plan to be. I am home from work right now because Bobo had a little fever this morning (100.9 rectally). Acetominophen was admistered but didn't seem to do anything. He's asleep right now, but if the fever's still here when he wakes up, I might actually take him for an ear check since he's not that far out from his last ear infection and I don't need that.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Back from "Vacation"

Well, I survived. And the 7 loads of vacation-related laundry are done. In fact, I have no idea how we came home with so much laundry when we each wore the same three outfits the whole week. It was unseasonably cool. Well, had it been October, it would have been seasonable, but for July notsomuch. We had one day where it didn't even get into the 60s. Considering I like watersports, this was not a good turn of events. It was plenty windy but not nearly pleasant enough to rent a sailboat. It was too cold to sit and watch a lumberjack show. Actually, that's not true. Had I packed snowsuits, it would have been fine. I should say "Had I packed enough winter clothes, it would have been plenty warm enough out to sit and watch a lumberjack (or water ski) show". See, it's my lack of planning that made the weather seem miserable.

Anyway, we went, we saw, we were conquered or something to that effect. The kids slept well enough (actually, except for one night they both slept pretty poorly, but I was expecting worse so I was pleasantly surprised). Chuckles slept on his kids' aerobed which really is the bomb. Bobo slept half in his Pack-n-Play at night and half in our bed (to steal our warmth) and all naps were had on the (squishy, leaning downhill, full-sized) bed with the pack-n-play, two walls, and a stack of pillows to keep him from rolling out (although truth be told, he's just not that into locomoting. He can roll and army crawl, but he chooses not to do so). Bobo however now will eat baby food (stage 2) by the jarful and knows how to pincer grasp and feed himself toasted oat rings (aka Cheerios).

All-in-all it was a fine vacation. Chuckles got to fish. Chuckles got to go to an indoor waterpark (and I got to do the slides). Bobo had baby's first boat ride (but really, how come every time I got in a boat some kid fell asleep on me?). Chuckles caught his first 8 fish ever. Chuckles had his first pony ride, he got to ride go-karts. and did myriad other things like play with his Leapster (which is some little video game thing that he is not normally allowed to do but for the car ride....). And we got 27 miles per gallon on the return trip with the A/C off (since, you know, cold for free). Somehow, that's my highlight.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Stil here, Still Alive, Going on "Vacation"

Another year has come and gone and tomorrow, I am leaving with the whole family for a week in the Northwoods. Why am I going back? Why why why? A small price to pay for not getting divorced, I suppose.

Here’s what’s up with us. Chuckles is 42 pounds and 41.5” tall and if I stick his hair straight up, he might be tall enough to go down the water slide at the water park on vacation.
He rides a bike with training wheels, can get his own cereal for breakfast, and is in charge of watering our garden (granted, sometimes he waters the patio and the other day he sprayed me, but he’s learning). His handwriting is coming along, but his reading really stalled out recently. He must be working on some other skill (maybe math or learning to turn on the TV). He is nighttime potty trained pretty much all the way now (we still do pick him up out of bed before we go to sleep to take him potty…I don’t think he even wakes up for that). Oddly, Bobo woke up with dry diapers two days last week (once on a day when I didn’t feed him overnight and the other time was after I had fed him, so who knows!).

Bobo was 20 lbs 4 ounces about 3 weeks ago when we went to Urgent Care on a Sunday for Baby’s First Ear Infection and Baby's First Amoxicillin. Yesterday he was 20 lbs 6 ounces, which seems like a little slow on the growth there, but as long as it's going up (and following Chuckles's growth curve closely), I guess I don't need to replace breast milk with butter cream frosting. Chuckles was so jealous that Bobo got to take his much-beloved pink amox (and Bobo was spitting it out which just enraged Chuckles more). So, Chuckles kept telling me his throat hurt and the next thing I knew he had a fever for a day. So, he got purple ibuprofen and was pretty mellow then. Unfortunately, he missed a field trip with the day care/summer camp due to the fever, but I think he preferred the purple stuff to the planetarium.

Bobo is still not a fan of solid foods. I had to take him off of cereal (and the formula I used to mix with it) because it turned his poop screamy. That seems better and we've introduced Cheerios. He does eat a variety of things but sometimes nothing. So, it’s less than fun but I never worry if we’re busy and I don’t get around to feeding him since he doesn’t care and doesn’t seem to need it. In fact just last night....

Bobo has started rolling over with the fierce moral urgency that comes with knowing your binky is right there and no one is giving it to you.

The issue with the swaddle worked itself out all on its own as I hoped it would, and it was so very much not a painful process because we let it come to an end all on its own (and Bobo is innately an easy child). There was a warm spell, and he needed to be naked in the swaddle and then he wanted to be sleeping on his stomach and well, anyway, after two nights of being helped in the night, he now sleeps without the swaddle (sometimes all the way through the night until morning which is like mind blowing because he's so young....at least in comparison to Sir Sleeps-A-Not).

I’ve been working a bit on night weaning....and by working I mean being too lazy to get up out of bed int he night without a damned good reason. That’s where Dad goes in when he cries in the night and if he can calm Bobo down, I don’t go in and feed him. And if Mr. Long-Suffering can’t get him to settle in the night, I do go in and feed him. It’s working somewhat. Several nights recently, I didn’t have to get out of bed all night. He sits up very nicely and is trying to figure out how to go forward while crawling. He knows how to push and go backward (and wind up under the couch).

Chuckles did a very bad thing at school the other day and then lied about it (and then hit and didn't apologize and then lied about hitting me) and well, after 9 time-outs in a row and bedtime fast-approaching, I threw pajamas on him, force brushed his teeth and told him it was bed time. And then I didn't give him a vitamin or read him stories and he didn't want hugs or kisses, so that was that. Now, where do I go to get my Mean Mom Card laminated?
Last night, however, was a lovely evening with stories and hugs and kisses and teeth and bath and lovey dovey and when I went in to his room at 9pm to get socks to pack for vacation, he was still up reading comic books quietly in his bed on his own without need for intervention from me. Carry on, then.

We've been singing the Erie Canal Song. I recommend the Suzanne Vega version available on youtube. While you're there, check out Johnny Cash doing Camptown Races.

I'll see you in a week when I come back and regale you with stories of my lumberjackedness.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The SAT Revisited

I don't remember what they're called on the SAT, but those word analogies where banana is to yellow, as orange is to orange, axcept harder and with words like verisimilitude.
Prison:Cigarettes as Work:Donuts
I bought myself $6 worth of donut hole goodwill today. Fifty
Munchkins for $5.99 and the undying love of the Order Entry group. I consider
it an investment in my mental health.

Swaddle:Sleep as Sleep:Sex*
On the last post Julie asked how weaning Bobo off the swaddle was going. Well, there's nothing I like to do more than answer reader questions...and it's pretty easy to do since I only have two readers, one of whom I alienated, so here you go Julie: If it ain't broke don't fix it. I have decided that when/if it becomes a problem, I will deal with it then. Bobo is not about to outgrow his awesome (seriously love them) swaddling blankets. He doesn't fight the swaddle. He likes it. He smiles for it. I guess I just thought that you were supposed to stop. And you are. Eventually. But I still like covers (even in the summer). So, now if he's really asleep, I'll put him in his crib with his swaddling blankie but not in it. It might someday become his lovey this was. And he's taken two naps of 2+ hours unswaddled. So, I think, someday, we'll make the transition. And heck, it might get too warm this summer for swaddling, so we might quit then (or we'll move into a meat locker...one of those two things). *(the answer is, you can't have the second if you're not getting the first)

Bobo is 20 lbs and 28 or 29" long. We use Size Large Kiddopatamus SwaddleMe blankets. We have two in microfleece and two in a t-shirt weight cotton. They are $10-$12 apiece. I bought them all new. And you know how thrifty I am, so I must think these are the bomb to spend over $40 on them. We had one Miracle Blanket which was fine, until Bobo was about 10 weeks old and too long for it. So, for as much as that cost (and it was a gift), it was so not worth it. I also had a SwaddleMe in polarfleece size small which we used alternately with the Miracle Blanket (whichever was in the wash, you know).

Ear Infections:Sleep as Tornadoes:Trailer Parks
I thought I might throw in the towel and start co-sleeping, but then we discovered that Chuckles had an ear infection and he started sleeping again. So, Bobo remains in his crib in a separate room where he has slept every night since coming home from the hospital. Babies are all noisy and grunty in their sleep so I do not want them in my room where I try to get precious sleep. If they sigh, I'll hear them, so no worries.

My Finger:Red as Ocean:Blue
Lisa the Cat has a death wish. She threw up on me at 1:17 am the other morning. Or is that considered night. Anyway. This necessitated that I stagger around the house finding cleaning products and whatnot. I ended up closing my pinky finger in the bathroom cabinet. I exclaimed with an audible M-Effer and developed a heck of a blood blister. So, here I am typing nine-fingered. For you. Because I care.

Bobo:Lizards as My Legs:Fluffy Furry Animals
Bobo got booted from daycare one day not that long ago. Suspected ringworm. Turns out, he has eczema. In the shape of circles. I bought a new cream (Aveeno with the blue cap for dry skin even that caused by eczema) and with thrice daily applications, even his disgusting bloody circle of shame is clearing up. He had this...THING on his neck the size of two quarters that was just raw, like meat. And that is recovering with this cream. I like this cream. This nine-dollar cream. It's good. It's clearing up random spots on his face and legs. Apparently this kid was a little scaly.

Bobo's Poop:Marbles as Baby Chuckles's Poop:Acid Water
Bobo started solids and his poop turned to marbles, so I have taken him off of cereal with formula. I don't know which of those two things was causing the operational slow-down, but one of them was. Since stopping, his poop is still only weekly but it's better. Less screamy, if you know what I mean. So, I guess I can't wean until it's milk time since he can't have formula (or at least not Nestle Good Start, which is the formula we used with Chuckles who had milk protein issues).

Breastfeeding:Bliss as Pumping:Buzzkill
I like breastfeeding well enough, but I hate pumping. So, the thought of needing to keep this up is a little depressing. When I was doing it because I wanted to, that was one thing. But the obligation is a little rougher. Of course, it's not all about me. It's about not wanting Bobo to scream. At me. So, there's that motivation. I'm no where near ready to give it up yet, so that's good, but I've noticed my pumping volume is tapering off a little and I'm starting to dip into my (completely ample) freezer stash. Such is life. I'm sure I could try a different brand or a soy formula or something, but I was hoping not to have to do that, since I get the Good Start for free included with my day care. Maybe I'll take their formula and sell it and buy enfamil or something. Or I'll just keep on keeping on and nursing. I do like being able to eat whatever I want and stay the same weight.

I think I'd like to learn to write haiku and put the next post in that format since this analogy stuff is such a laugh riot. I also have thoughts on Iran's stolen elections, David Letterman's objectification of women, the liberal media, conservatives with no fiscal sensibility, General Motors, my love of the corvette, my desire to buy a boat, the political firing of the Inspector General, political favoritism in college admissions, Mike Pence, earmarks, the end of the era of The Dollar, the crappy way Newsweek reinvented itself with my subscription money, the digital TV conversion (and what is on the TV now with and without a convertor box), the lawsuit I have with the place that nearly killed Chuckles, Chuckles's first school field trip on the big yellow bus, and much more. But it will have to wait for another day. I'm beat and off to bed.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

How did it get to be June already?

First off...I just got an email from my aunt. She and my uncle are going on a cruise to Greece on some brand new cruise ship....without their kids. For 12 days in September. And here is my answer to her: "I hope you enjoy my honeymoon." A billion years ago when Mr. Long-Suffering and I were getting married, we planned on cruising the Greek Isles, but there was a nationwide air-traffic stop as we were married in Sept. 2001. So, we went to Chicago and did dinner and a show every night. We re-planned the cruise for our six-month anniversary but Bali bombings. For our one-year, we went to Vegas (but Venice and New York and Paris all in one!). And so, here we are 8 years later, and we have yet to take our honeymoon.

Mimi and Papa have decided to sell their house and get something in a single story so they can stop doing stairs. Personally, I think my mother and step-father are nuts to sell a house right now when there is no compelling reason to do so. It seems like a fine time to buy a house, not-so-much for the selling. But they both think it will be no problem because it's summer and they have a pool.
We just refinanced and had a professional apprasial and found out our house is worth what we paid for it 6 years ago. Since then, we've done windows, roof, bathroom, insulation, landscaping, waterproofing, updating, etc. And we've made a grand total of zero dollars on the proposition. At least we enjoy living here.

I accidentally turned one of the Medela bottles that go with my Pump-in-Style inside-out rendering it useless. I could tell you how I did it, but I rather like leaving you with the mystery.

I have an all-day work meeting tomorrow off-site. There is a dedicated lactation room where I am going. And I am pretty excited about it. I know. They last time I had an off-site meeting, I wound up sitting on the floor of the ladies' room pumping in a stall so I could be near the only exposed electrical outlet. A decidated room sounds like it might have a fridge. And a chair! I'll let you know what I find out.

Bobo has gone from being a happy sleeper monkey to being a happy non-sleeper monkey. I am not thrilled with the change. Actually, he sleeps. He's more of a wake up every couple of hours and have you come in just to show me you're still there kind of monkey. Not sure what kind of monkey that is. A gibbon, maybe.
There are new rules at our house. Mr. Long-Suffering is in charge of all wake-ups before 2 am (unless I magically determine that Bobo is actually hungry, magically/arbitrarily, whatever). Then, at the next wake up, I feed him. Then, Mr. Long-Suffering is on again until it has been at least 3 hours since the feeding. So, I am up at 2 and 5:15 for 20 minutes each time (or 1 am and 4:30). Mr. Long-Suffering is up for 30 seconds at 11, 11:45, 12:58, 1:19, 3:17, and 5:42 (at which point he stays up). I'm not sure who has it worse. Mr. Long-Suffering is up for 3 minutes over night and I am up for about an hour, but he has to get out of bed more, but I have to push him out because he sleeps through the wake-ups. It only takes a second to get happy monkey back to sleep, but ignoring him doesn't work. He doesn't even open his eyes, he just needs to know you're there. Very odd. I hope he grows out of it.
I am learning to do side-lying nursing. I think it could change my life. Am also considering co-sleeping, and if you know me, you realize the level of desperation I'm experiencing. It's funny though. I know I was MUCH more deperate by the time Chuckles was this age. I never split night-time duty with the Mr. I never ever co-slept. I rarely napped. Chuckles woke a lot more. And here I am considering much more drastic measures than I had with Chcukles. Because I don't want to become that crazy person I was last time. I'm starting to think I might have had Post-Partum Depression after Chuckles. It's not uncommon. I had about eleventy risk factors (history of periodic/episodic depression, sleeplessness, emergency c-section with a difficult recovery, infertility, high expectations about maternal role, little support). I'm just doing so much better this time around even though things are more hectic (with a second kid around to take care of). I'm proud of myself for realizing that this can't keep up and getting a plan in place long before I'm crying hyserically all the time because I am so so very tired.

I have mentioned my Pro-Choice stand on many occasions. I love babies. I trust women to make the best decisions they possibly can in crappy circumstances. I've been blogging birth control and abortion since long before that was cool. So, I reiterate, get your laws out of my hoo-ha.

As far as I know, Indiana has no "right to breastfeed" laws, but I've been out feeding my baby in public like a mad-woman because I almost feel like I want someone to challenge me. I will make a federal case of it. I'm quite discreet most of the time. My in-laws are funny. They still don't "get" it. My FIL asked me if we were bringing a diaper bag out to dinner one night. I replied that it was in the car. He asked if we had a bottle. I smiled and said, "No, we have me." And I did feed smiler monkey at the table in the restaurant using my Boppy and my cool hooter hider.

I think they don't get it because my SIL who has kids roughly the ages of my kids said she couldn't breastfeed because she never got a full supply. I knew she did some supplementing with formula in the early days but when talking to her, she had no idea that this would hinder her milk coming in. She thought she had to feed the baby until her milk came in. Uhhh, no, that is not how supply and demand works. Ha ha. The sad thing is no one ever told her until it was too late. And she thought the marathon feeding sessions of every hour all evening meant she didn't have enough milk or good enough milk, etc. No one mentioned that this was the baby's way of putting in his order for more milk, please, and also hold me close and keep me safe and warm. Man, am I glad I read the Womanly Art of Breastfeeding. It was a little over-the-top for me, but the mechanics/science was good.

I just finished reading the book The Girls Who Went Away about young women who surrended children for adoption in the years before Roe v Wade. Poignant. The women didn't want to do it. Sometimes, the boys were even willing to marry the girls, but the parents said no. Horrible. In one case, I would say it was actually kidnapping. And the lies the people told about he absences and the lengths to which people went to keep the secret. It wasn't all girls going upstate to visit a sick aunt. One family told everyone their daughter spent the summer in Florida working as a cabana waitress and sent her to the maternity home with a tanning lamp so that when she came back, she'd look like she'd been in Florida. So many of the schools turned the girls out on rumor of pregnancy. The girls didn't know what was happening. There was no knowledge of the body. It was horrible. And the secret was so shameful. It ruined the girls' lives, so often. An excellent book. Truly excellent. Makes me support comprehensive sex education that much more.

Speaking of birth control....I mentioned I got the Mirena and have bled every day since. Once I put it out on the internet, I went 3 days without bleeding. Only to have it start up again with a vengeance. I bought 130 panty liners a while back and they are all gone. I need another gross of them, I guess. I was supposed to be enjoying my lactational ammennorhea, but here I am.

My new car is still awesome. If GM put as much engineering, thought, attention to detail, and quality into every car they put on the road, they would not be in bankruptcy. My car is awesome. My car also no longer has satellite radio after today, and that it a shame. RIP- Hair Nation siriusXM 46. I think I should be in charge of dismantling and rejiggering GM. I like cars. A lot. I am contemplating buying a '64 corvette (red, convertible) right now. A guy at work is selling, and I would love it. Love. I like horsepower and things that go vroom. I know drivetrains, chassis, trannies, direct injection, turbo-diesel, rack-and-pinion, stability control, air bags, power assist, CVT, AWD, ABS, quiet steel dashboards, two part paint systems, etc. I could be better than that 31-year old who has never been inside an auto plant. I've never been in an auto assembly plant, but I've been in components plants and an off-highway construction vehicle aseembly plant. That is close enough for gorvernmnet work, I'd say.

Cheers!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Perspectives

Having two children gives me a lot of perspective on what is important and what's what and who's who and all that. Here I will now list vignettes regarding having child(ren) and facts therein.

  • Two months ago, I scheduled the well visits for both kids for the same day. 9:00 for Chuckles. 9:15 for Bobo. We got out of there just before 11:00 this morning. 9 vaccines shots were administered in total. All were correct. I will never schedule two well visits together ever again.
  • Bobo fell off of his growth chart. Bobo needs solids. Bobo thinks taking food off of a spoon is an affront to his babyhood and an injustice. He'd have Amnesty International on speed dial if he could crawl to the phone. So, the good pediatrician said we should brush his gums with our fingers or a toothbrush and then try again with something tasty. So, today, we did sweet potatoes with oatmeal after scrubbing his mouth and that boy ate it up. Woot! Growth curve here we come! On average, he was eating four half-meals of solids per week. He is apparently supposed to be eating 3 meals plus a snack every day. Ha ha ha ha. OK, so we'll get on that.
  • If Bobo was my first child and fell off of the growth chart, I would be googling and frenzied. Instead I am blogging to let you know I had no idea who much he was "supposed" to be eating. I am mellow. He'll be fine. He's still pushing 20 pounds. He'll be fine. No problems.
  • As a second-time mom, I know there is no such thing as "supposed to" when it comes to kids. They do what they do and you just guide them and kep them safe. You can lead a baby to the breast, but you can't make him latch. Ditto that, spoon.
  • I am sure Bobo will be fine. Although he has a fever. Which I am sure is nothing. Although lab results were being faxed in to the ped's office confirming swine flu on other kids. But it's quite common where I live right now so not particularly worrying. Bobo just has a cold or a slight reaction to the vaccines. He'll be fine. He had a bit of a double-barrelled snot faucet before we went (no fever though).
  • Chuckles has developed a fake limp in reaction to his vaccines and he demanded medicine. Faker. Actor. Drug-seeker. That's my boy. Monday morning he woke up with a sore throat. I checked it out with my otoscope (what? you don't have an otoscope at home? all the truly neurotic moms have one...got it on amazon). It looked red but not serious. Doctor also commented on the size of his tonsils and the redness but said it didn't look like strep - keep an eye on it, etc.
  • The other day I was at work and something worked and I had been working on this little bit of programming for a year - I kid you not. And it worked. And I walked around my trailer getting high-fives from all the other engineers who were impressed and wanted to know how I did it and they were congratulating me. I was a rock star.
  • Another day at work, I was having a bad day but I got to writing an important email and 5 o'clock came along and I hit 'save to drafts' and left. Mid-sentence, I left work. Laptop shut, light off. Baby's gotta eat, so I gotta go. (Although in retrospect, I guess he should have been eating solids without me.) This is priorities. Kids before work. I told this story to some other people (parents) at work and they were really impressed with my ability to shift gears between home and work. I don't know whether they know my secret...by 5 pm, my chest is ready to rain milk down on my keyboard, so leaving seems like the best option.
  • Chuckles has discovered some of the ultimate stalling tactics: getting into bed and saying he wants to put his toys away. I'm a suck for some cleaning up, but I don't let you get out of bed, so there's an impasse. We'll get through it.
  • Bobo can roll tummy-to-back and back-to-tummy. He has done each multiple times. He prefers not to do so. He's much happier on his back with some toys dangling above him or on his stomach looking around. Movement is for losers. I know at this age Chuckles was using rolling over-and-over as a means of locomotion (to go behind the TV and get at the wires). Bobo prefers that toys are brought to him. Kids. They are all different.
  • I am haunted by the realization that I gave Bobo the wrong name. He is such a fat and benevolent king. I feel that - if I had to give him a clown name, which I did - I should have named him Happy The Clown. I am sure I will be haunted forever with the knowledge that Bobo is really Happy. When I think of him in my mind, I refer to him as Happy. When I look at him, all I see is Happy. It's terrible. As Bobo, he is named after some other clowns in the family (and really, Mr. Long-Suffering's uncles are clowns), but Happy is just a name that fits. Oh well.
  • I got the Mirena IUD at 7 weeks post-partum just as the lochia has started to stop. However, because of the Mirena, I have bled every day for the last 6 months. I am nursing around-the-clock. I should be enjoying my lactational ammenorhea. But instead, I am using pantyliners like I own stock in the company that makes them. I am not happy about this. After Chuckles, once the 8 weeks of post-partum bleeding ended, I did not bleed again until he was 17 months old - 5 months after he was completely weaned. Oh well. After Chuckles, I would have been thrilled to get pregnant again easily (OK, not true. I just lied to you. I would have been scared to death because I hadn't slept through the night until he was almost 2 and the thought of having another one do that to me would have sent me into a panic attack. Little did I know I was going to have Happy - the Sleeper Monkey.) Anyway, Mirena - my thoughts are mixed. I'm not pregnant (yay!) but I could have just taken the pill and not bled - Bigger Yay!
  • Bobo only poops every 5 to 7 days. I hadn't changed a poop diaper since I went back to work. They send the nasty clothes home from day care in a plastic bag. I throw them away (because he is pretty much out of the 9 month clothes anyway, I don't need them any more). Yesterday before work, he pooped. I changed it. And I didn't get any on his clothes. Woo Hoo. I liked that outfit, so I am really glad I didn't need to burn it.
  • We have thrown a party at our house every weekend for the last 3. Chuckles's birthday, Mother's Day brunch (any excuse to drink champagne out of my Waterford crystal while eating quiche), and Sunday's party of random people who couldn't make it to either of our last two parties. A good time was had by all, but I think Chuckles is starting to think we're going to have people over all the time because he wants to know what kind of party we're having this weekend. Coincidentally, it's Memorial Day so we will probably be going to some kind of paty this weekend. I'm sure my party animal will be thrilled. Of course, when he says it, it comes out as "party aminal", which is super cute.
  • I got my review at work. I was told that I am free with the information that I know and have. I am of the "teach a man to fish" school of thought. My boss thinks that's great. My husband thinks it means I am too lazy to do things for others. Looks like a win-win-win situation. There will be no raise though, something about global financial collapse and a drying up of the order book and 30% capacity, and well, I'm sure you know the rest.

And a Happy Memorial Day to you.