Thursday, November 10, 2011

In which we were idiots

There are moments when you realize your shared stupidity. Sunday at around 6:30 that was David and I. He at home, me in the isle of the grocery store.

Last Sunday. Time to change the clocks and get some extra sleep (unless you have children). David had some friends over in the morning. We talked about the kitchen clocks being wrong as we cleaned. We talked about how early Acorn woke up.

We did not talk about Acorn's schedule.

A month back I solicited the advice of mom friends and made a game plan. That I totally forgot about on Sunday.

The usual child care/mom schedule is something like breakfast between 8-9, lunch around noon, nap around 12:30, bed around 8. We do feed him dinner. I promise. It just fluctuates. The dad schedule is another thing entirely.

So we could have adjusted his schedule up. We could have tried delaying everything 15-30 minutes. Or just be oblivious and wonder why your sweet baby was Mr. Crankypants.

To take it to the next level, I decided earlier in the day that we were converting the crib to a toddler bed. By we I mean I. And I had to do it right. this. minute. Acorn actually loved watching me use the screwdriver and them pretending to use one himself. During the very last section I sent him downstairs to be with the guys because repositioning the mattress holder thingie while Acorn tried to climb on it wasn't working.

Just as I finished up David brought a sleeping Acorn up. Then put him in the newly converted toddler bed. That Acorn had never seen. An hour into what needs to be a 2.5 hour nap for everyone sanity, Acorn roused a bit, looked around and I'm guessing went 'Where the heck am I?' He didn't like it and couldn't quite figure out climbing down. Combine this with the guy energy from David's friends and it was the sad nap that was.

After a few hours of cranky, we went for a walk where Acorn proceeded to conk out.

We woke him at 5:30 to protect bedtime. He protested. David changed his diaper. He protested more. David comforted him. Acorn said 'forget y'all, I'm going to sleep.'

Three days later we're still paying for it. Come spring someone please smack some sense into me. Because apparently we need it.

Monday, November 7, 2011

The Moments You Wait For

I've known forever that I wanted to have kids.

Between forever ago and getting pregnant was a long time, followed by the pregnancy daydreams about the person you're growing. Over all this time one of those visions was of me and baby sitting in a cuddly chair enjoying a good book.

Over his first year Acorn was not interested in books. Well maybe as a teether.

And then, like some much of this parenting a baby thing goes, he was so into books and reading. So before bed we snuggle in the brown rocker and read about busy spiders, singing pigs, and whatever else is in the stack.

Friday, November 4, 2011

We Shall Call Him Squirrel

Well maybe Acorn.

When I was pregnant my office ladies started calling the baby Baby D. It's carried over onto the blog because I wanted his blog moniker to have a bit of meaning and I couldn't come up with anything.

Over time the name has presented itself.

Apparently my boy is a bit of a squirrel. He takes bits of anything he can get his hands on and hides them away all over the house.

It started under our couch in those days when he had just perfected crawling. I'd look under the couch and be horrified by how much junk was under there. Housekeeping is not a forte of mine or David's, so despite how bad it was I kept saying this week we'll be better at keeping things tidy as I pulled the junk out.

Anything from a small toys, plastic wrapping (think disposable utensils, mail), paper, yarn  and whatever else he could get his hands on made the pile. Things he knew he shouldn't have his hands on too.

When he discovered the drawers on our coffee table they also became fair game. We've found the stuff listed above and my two favorites- a finished bottle and my cell phone open with a few numbers dialed.

He's like a squirrel storing up acorns for the winter. I can almost hear him saying I'm not sure if I'll find this again, I'll just hide it over here. Any nook or cranny he can get his little hands to is fair game.

So, we will call him Acorn.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

New Work

Baby D attends a Montessori child care center and preschool. When possible I need to integrate similar activities at home to give him more consistency.

Last week I was at a thrift store looking for sweaters to upcycle when I came across some small metal housewares. I kept wandering, but they stuck in my head. Eventually I realized that they would be perfect for a variety of activities for Baby D.

I paired them with a small metal bowl from the housewares section and we were set.

It was the best $3.50 I've spent in a while.

I introduced it as a dumping and picking up activity. He's been doing this for a while with various toys, but the U section has a smaller diameter than a pen. It's a good challenge for his fine motor development.
Another plus for Baby D- the pieces and the bowl make lots of noise when he dumps things in or moves them around. It may be making my husband a little crazy. But. When I introduced it the first time he played with it for 12 minutes straight. I think he would have gone longer if my phone hadn't rung. A week and a half later it's good for 5-10 minutes of focused play. Which gives me just enough time to breathe/start dinner/clean up dinner/read an email/breathe. 

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A Year of Dates

A few months back my husband and I celebrated three years of marriage.

A few things to know about me- I procrastinate. Dates sneak up on me. I prefer gifts of the time intensive thoughtful sort. I sometimes get overwhelmed by gift giving.

These things do not work well together.

Not at all.

But sometimes I manage to pull it together and knock it out of the park. Or at least into the outfield.

This past year we've been focused on our boy and functioning on too little sleep and money. We are doing ok, but I wanted to do something to keep our relationship strong. Much more useful than anything I could come up with in the leather, crystal or glass arena.* Also, even pre-baby we were bad at planning dates.

I can't remember where I first got the idea. No doubt it was baby feeding/middle of the night blog surfing of some sort. When I started searching around again I found Shannon from Life In General.

I brainstormed a list of things I've been wanting us to do and things he likes. Then I consulted my girls for a few extra ideas. And then (because over-researching is my thing) I read a few date night blogs and date idea websites.

The next step was assigning dates to months. Date specific things to those months. The outdoor stuff went to warm months. The indoor stuff to cold months. The final consideration was how busy we'd be that month. The crazy months are at home dates.

I'll write more about the logistics next week.

*traditional and modern 3rd anniversary gifts

Thursday, October 27, 2011

13 Months

Right now you are loving:

the broom/swiffer/duspan
your toothbrush
the clear maracas at childcare
mama's cell phone
really any phone
The Very Busy Spider
playing bucket head

The dislikes, we'll chalk those up to toddlerhood. You have no love for any form or being restrained (see high chair, car seat, crib) or being fed. You want to do it all yourself and get where you need to. Unless it's time for cuddles.

The thing that's making me shake my head the most. When dad picks you up at child care you give Ms. F, the assistant a hug when she asks. If I'm there you ignore her totally, or play shy. Only once did you give in to the question. It was after 5-6 asks and a refil of your bottle. Even then it was more of a lean than a hug, your chest touching hers with your arms stubbornly at your sides.

Monday, July 18, 2011



That is the theme of you at 10 months.

The skills you spent the last 2 months learning have been perfected and you are on the go and intense.

You don't crawl anymore, you zoom. You know how to crawl on your hands and knees, but don't really like it. For a few days you experimented with putting your right foot flat on the floor, perpendicular to your torso and everything else in regular crawl position. That wasn't it either. After trial and error you've ended up in a modified army crawl- using your forearms and feet, with your belly lifted just enough not to drag.

Since you've figured that out you've been off. Exploring the hall and rooms upstairs, going from the front room to living room and up the stairs.

You will take steps if we hold your hands or you are pushing the cart at child care.

Purees are only tolerable in small doses and then you want food. You especially appreciate cheese. Your pincer grasp still leaves much to be desired, especially when you are trying to chow down. After a few tries you start grabbing with your fist, bringing it to your mouth, opening your hand against your mouth and hoping for the best. The seat of your highchair has the grubbiness to prove it.

At child care you are thriving. In my work brain, I know you learn a lot at child care. That you you have important relationships there*. But seeing it in action is so cool. You have buddies. Luke is your favorite and I sometimes spend a few minutes peeking through the door to watch you chasing after each other. The other morning Dad watched you two take turn pushing the other across the room in a Radi0 Flyer cart. One would push until the wall, stop, then the rider would climb out and stand to push once the other climbed in.
You take the 'work' you do there and apply it at home. Your favorite work is essentially a wooden piggy bank with a large hole for retrieving the coin. Two days after you first did this you started using mason jars as the vessel, dropping pieces in then pulling them out. Over and over again.

To join your tantrums you have started shaking your head no. I don't think you quite know what you're doing. But you use it in the right moment enough to leave me guessing and laughing.

You have perfected high fives and still love peekaboo. You play shy around others. The combination of your smile and curls continues to melt hearts. Mine most of all.

*that's why we pay more than our mortgage for child care each month