Monthly Archives: June 2009

angst, now with pictures

21 June 2009
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I am feeling sad and angst-y and retrospective and thoughtful. I think weaning is here. Or will be here this week. And I am ready, I think. But the milestone still makes me fret a bit. It feels so final – no more nursing. And for added fodder, no more nursing ever again. Bella is the last child I will give birth to, the last child I will breastfeed, the last child I shall wean. As the title says, angst, now with pictures.

Look at those baby blues

Look at those baby blues

If Rob were to write some angst about our children this week , those baby blues might star. Not that he as anything against blue eyes. It’s just that we ended up with 3 children and 3 eye colors. At 9 months, I don’t think they are going to change anymore. Maybe get a tad more gray. So we’ll have brown, hazel and blue eyes. My mom’s side of the family is all about the blue eyes.  So Bella’s genes had to work for those blue eyes…recessive traits do pop out sometimes, I guess.

Camera fun

Camera fun

There’s our brown-eyed girl. I don’t have a photo to document my angst on Miranda growing up. But it’s there. She is so tall, so grown-up, so smart, so mature. How did I get a kid this old?

I can stand up!

I can stand up!

In addition to starting to prefer the Soothie bottle, Bella is highly mobile. She is standing up all the time. On the day she turned 9 months, she discovered she could touch the television. If she just swatted her hands, she might turn it off! Wow.

She’s growing up on me. As much as 9 months ago, I could see that the baby stage would fly by, I am still feeling sort of sad that I am right.

Better, I suppose, than Rob being right. I kid, I kid.

Wearing her sun hat

Wearing her sun hat

In other news, Rob’s banging on the drums is actually music. Who knew? We were slightly skeptical because the baseline from another floor of the house…yeah, it doesn’t sound like a song. But put it all together and the band can play. Rob and his band rocked out last weekend.


Not a disco

The party was fun. The music was good. The hotel bed felt wonderful. By the end of the evening, I felt about as tired as this dog. Who must have decided I was too close to standing on him and he was too tired to move away. As any fan of PD Eastman’s Go Dog Go can tell you, a dog party really is the best kind.

my foot as pillow

my foot as pillow

Time is slip sliding away. Bella is weaning. And contemplating cruising the furniture. She is cruising the play pen. I’m not ready. At least tonight, while I am maudlin. Tomorrow, I’ll go back to clapping for her. And delighting her peek-a-boo. To feeding her as much food as she’ll eat (a lot). And asking her if she wants a  ba-ba after lunch.

Speaking of cheering, we’ve been clapping at Henry’s T-ball games. The summer league has begun. He’s adorable. And as much as small children playing a game that seems almost like baseball, but with less action, it shocks me how big he is.



Third Base

Third Base



Left field (is actually behind him)

Left field (is actually behind him)

Sunday nights are a fine time to cry a little in my beer. Better that they grow. Better that they succeed. Better that they are happy and healthy and get bigger every day. Hmmm…beer…finally, a reason to be happy about weaning. :)

School’s Out!

16 June 2009
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Week two of summer vacation is proceeding with great caution. On the plus side, Henry is at Safety Town, learning how to be a productive student citizen and gets to ride go-karts, Bella is cruising on the furniture, and Miranda is reading all the time. The library has a summer reading program and at 8 and 16 hours of reading you get prizes. She is at 3 hours of reading so far, after 36 hours in the program. In more pluses for Henry, T-ball started. They played 2 innings. He was the lead-off hitter, the catcher, and then the last hitter (an automatic home run!). And he had frozen custard afterward. And the neighbor was home today so he had a buddy to play with for most of the day.

On the down side, Miranda is going to Safety Town tomorrow. Her program is about bike safety and she is terrified it will be hard, it will rain, she won’t know anyone, and it will be hard. This will turn into a plus side by tomorrow afternoon, unless her bike is swept away in a flash flood or something. Then it will stay a down side. Henry’s bee hive dowsing skills (hmmm, dowsing is for water, is there word for finding bee hives?) have grown. If I forgot to add it to the last bee post, he has found 2 in the play fort and now one under his giant Tonka truck. So not cool bees, not cool.

9 months up

10 June 2009
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Arabella is now 9 months old. The time has flown, I think. Was it all the way at the beginning of school that she made her surprise appearance? Or was it after Christmas? Or maybe after Easter? Time, as all parents comes to know, is a funny thing. And even though the hour before supper is the longest hour of the entire day, the long hours of the night fly by between one more drink from Bella, a nightmare from Henry or sleepwalking from Miranda.

Bella is crawling around. She pulls herself up and today she even plopped down on her bottom a few times. On purpose and without crying. Bella cried so rarely the first 6 months of her life that when she did cry, I took her to the pediatrician. She had an ear infection. At 6 months, she figured out that she had a voice and she might as well share it. She doesn’t cry all of the time, but she does squeal, yell, and even cry with big fat tears whens he wants to make her wishes known. Like, I am hungry.I am tired. I bunked my head again. I can’t keep up!

She has started smacking her lips. She puts her hands out to the side and shakes them when she is eating and thirsty. Or wants more/different food. She is determined to control when she drinks. She nurses at night and usuallya t nap times without a problem. But if I offer her a drink when she doesn’t want it, ouch! She bites. She will drink a bottle when Grandma offers it and she is thirsty. If not, she makes a big slobbery mess down her front. I think day weaning would be nice. I am fan of child led weaning, but Miranda and Henry liked bottles more than Bella. Scratch that, they both liked liquids more than Bella.

Whereas last month, Bella was content to crawl across a room, now she wants to circle the house. She wants to keep up with the big kids. And mom. And Papa. And Grandma and Grandpa. She is gettign pretty fast. 9 months is bringing out the imp in her. she thinks plugs and cords look like FUN! She slows down for No! althought today she grinned at me with full dimples when I said it. Redirection works to a limited extent – there are things plugged in every room of the house it seems. And she knows where those plugs are.

Bella pulls herself up to standing over and over. Up to the TV. Up to her toddler ball toy chute thing. Up your leg. Up to Henry’s table when he plays Pokemon cards (is is in the water? his DNA? How did Pokemon draw him in?) Up, Up, Up. Rob and I took Miranda and Henry to see Up the weekend it came out. It was a good movie. Henry climbed up Rob’s lap when he got scared. Miranda just seemed to enjoy it straight up. And I cried and cried. I couldn’t get over the love and loss story.

After being shy and having the big quivering lip when we hung out with new people around 5-6 months, she is starting to get more social. Or she has me finally trained to go slower. She likes to pull hair. To scratch faces. In happy parenting speak, she likes to explore us. But she hurts.Her nails grow quickly.

The latest thing is that she wants to let go with one hand while standing. She doesn’t have her balance yet. But the desire is there to let go of the couch or my hand or her toy. Which means 9-10 months might be very interesting around here.

Bella is still incredibly sweet. She likes cuddles. She wants her brother and sister’s attention. She had adorable dimples. She still naps 1-2 times a day and sleeps pretty well at night. With her resistance to drinking, I am encouraging her to nurse at night, at least until I am sure she is growing well. At 9 months, I measure her at 17 pounds and 28.5 inches.


8 June 2009
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Someone is having a contest for Tom Swifties. And I couldn’t think of any off the top of my head. Then we went on a family 5K  on Sunday and Miranda kept complaining that she could only breathe hardly.

I think it qualifies. Although it might fit better in a contest for Mrs. Malaprops.

The 5K was hard. It was raining until 10 minutes before the starting gun. It was chilly throughout. The kids had no energy. And we weren’t very good motivators. But with a small shortcut, we made it. We finished in time to take a bathroom break and then have them run in the kids races. 1/4 mile for Henry. 1/2 for Miranda. She worked so hard. They deserved their medals.

things I forgot to write about

6 June 2009
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1 – On Rob’s birthday, I was flipping through the radio and came across this song. I had to buy it on Amazon, burn it to a  CD and play it for him as drove to a hotel. I had been on the fence about having a birthday getaway and this song pushed me to make the reservation.  I sincerely hope Hallmark buys all rights to this song, which is kind of lame but will be perfect for one of those music playing cards. I want to see this in stores by next May. Get on it American Greetings! Beat Hallmark to it.

2 – I got a Nintendo DS for my birthday. I love it. I like it so much,  I started wishing it did more things. Like had Wi-Fi internet access. And maybe mobile phone capability. And an address book. I think I like the stylus, a throw-back to the Palm Pilot. If only it had its own kooky little shorthand system. I want Nintendo to buy Apple and fix all of the things I hate about Apple. I find the all white sleekness of Macs sort of pretentious. But I love it on the Wii. I think the touch screen on the iPhone and iPod are just going to get dirty. I am even tired of the “i” in everything. But I don’t hate the Wii, with its crazy double “i.” If Nintendo won’t do this small favor for me, I hope they start selling phones.

3 – And I am so late to the party that the new Disney tween show Jonas is an attempt to recreate the magic of the Monkees. But I did think it right away. But now that we all acknowledge it, really, Jonas, you want, at best, one of you to have the career of Davy Jones?

4 – Miranda has hatched a plan to get another American Girl doll. She is going to earn money from chores all summer, plus using birthday money and First Communion money. She is debating between Rebecca, Molly and Josephina. Josephina was winning until we discussed pronounce her name in Spanish.

5 – Henry loves T-Ball. He invites all of you to come to his games. Every Monday night, June 15 through July 28th.

6 – Bella can now crawl around the house at twice the speed of last week. Which still means you can walk faster. She thinks electrical cords are very interesting but reacts to us when we say no. At least she slows down enough for us to redirect her.

unintended consequences

4 June 2009
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We built two raised beds for the garden this year. And raised beds require extra ground to, well, raise them. And through an annoying quirk, the delivery trucks have an 8 foot gate in which to drive to the backyard. This limits our choices of delivery trucks. We had 5 yards of ground barely squeak through the gate a week or 2 ago. Henry thought he had the worlds by the tail. A mountain of dirt! He was suitably crushed when we* shoveled the dirt into the garden beds.

We have a sand circle underneath the play structures. When we added the monkey bars last year, we needed more sand to go under it. But for various reasons (cheap, lazy) I stalled on the order. But it seemed perfect to entertain Henry for the last week before school ended. And so yesterday, the sand man (I laughed all day as Henry waited for the Sand Man to come) brought 6 yards of sand. Still an 8 foot opening, but a different truck.

Henry was the king of the sand hill for about an hour before he came over to my mom and said he found a thing. It was grey. And had lots of little holes in. You know, like where the, hmmm, what are they called? They live it in. After some miming, my mom guessed he found a  hornet’s nest. She freaked out a little bit. She hurried over and said, now where is it?

H: It was under the fort in the playset.

Grandma: [looking] I don’t see it.

H: Oh, I picked at it and it fell and I threw it.

Grandma: Ahhhhhh!!!!!!

And then my mother stepped on and broke the nest. And it seemed old and defunct. And not like it had hornets in it when he threw it. And then she scared the pants off of him. She seriously and thoroughly warned him that bees nests are nothing to mess with. That only grown-ups and preferably Grandpa should poke at them. And that he should never throw one.

And it worked. Henry is now very afraid of bees swarming him. [less afraid than he’s be if he had been swarmed by bees] He is afraid of the playset. The yard. The grass. Even his beloved sand pile.


Miranda has been iffy on the great backyard all year. Too much texture. And bugs. She has been jumpy about the bugs getting her. My grand summer gardening experiment is going to be like an episode of Scooby Doo, with M&H playing Shaggy and Scooby and the bugs plays the ghosts. I better stock up on Scooby Snacks. And hope that Bella isn’t playing Scrappy Doo.

* A footnote for everyone who knows us in real life, Rob did not shovel any of the dirt. We in this case refers to me and my parents.

But think of the motorcycles!

1 June 2009
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There are 4 motorcycles for sale that I pass by in the course of my day. And I don’t go very many places. I am assuming this is a sign on the recession because spring would not be the time to get rid of bike. If you liked the idea of windblown hair. Or helmet hair. Or going really fast on a country rode while your best girl hugs you from behind. Just saying. I don’t ever want to ride on a  motorcycle and they usually annoy me with my fear that I will accidentally nudge them just a  little bit and cause the driver to fall off and die. 4 bikes for sale in a 1 mile radius seems like a lot to me.

But no boats. Hmmm.

The sales have shown me that Cedarburg doesn’t seem to take overnight parking seriously. Every municipality seems to post those signs saying no parking between really late at night and really early in the morning. In Milwaukee, if you parked your car overnight, without a special permit, you would most likely end up with a  ticket. In Chicago, it was a ticket or maybe the boot. I respect the overnight parking laws. And I am starting to think my new community must not. There is the minivan that sat on a corner for sale for about a month. The 4 motorcycles, three of which are on the road. A trailer with Michigan plates loaded with mulch. I am curious about that one. These are non-moving violations occurring over weeks, not hours. I think these would be the easy ones to catch. And you can argue they are low priority, but they are low priroty everywhere and you still get a ticket in the city.

In other news, Henry’s T-Ball schedule came out. He got his uniform today. And in his oversized Twins t-Short ands his authentic MLB baseball cap…he was so grown up. 5 isn’t 15, but oy! He is excited about T-ball. I hope that excitement lasts the 6 weeks season.