aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
I'm doing my best to indoctrinate Tai into the festivities that are Halloween.  We started watching 'It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown".  We decorated the house with pumpkins, ghosts, witches and bats in the beginning of the month.  We've gone to pumpkin patches, we've checked out decorated houses, we baked pumpkin pie with real pumpkin.  We picked out a costume for him (maybe I'll sew one next year.  When I can actually use a sewing machine for more than hemming a pair of pants).  We're planning a party.

Once in a while he's a little taken aback by something he sees.  Sometimes skeletons freak him out - which I can relate to.  I'm not easily scared by Halloween stuff, but something about skeletons, ones that look realistic, make my skin crawl.  I got a pair of long skeleton earrings when I was a kid - they were plastic, but looked real.  I couldn't wear them.  When mom would get them out for the season, I'd stick them in the back of a drawer and try not to imagine them dancing out of the drawer, bones rattling.  *shudder*  I have tried not to pass the heebie jeebies on to him, but maybe I did, who knows.  He also got freaked out when Steve, on Blue's Clues, dressed up with a green alien hat with tentacles on his fingers.  Personally, I have nothing against tentacles, so that's not my fault.

On the other hand, he *loves* pumpkins, bats, cats, witches, ghosts.  When he sees a ghost, he says, 'boo!'  When he says witch, it sounds more like 'bitch'.  Hee!  Every time he sees a pumpkin he says, 'punkin!  Halweeeen!'

I'm excited for the first holiday that he can really look forward to, and experience.  We'll see what he thinks of everyone in costume.  And trick or treating!
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
Tai and I spend at least part of every day outside.  Tai loves to run around and burn off energy, and it's good for me to get fresh air too.  In fact, I should probably run around as well - but that's another story.  This evening we stopped at the Noe Valley Rec center playground, even though it was getting dark.  I figured we could play for a bit and wait for Tom's shuttle and go home together.  Tai'd napped late so he wasn't exhausted.  We were the only ones at the playground when we arrived.  There were some teenaged boys playing basketball on the courts and we could hear kids playing a game inside the gym.  

Tai spent at least twenty minutes running around, kicking his ball both to me and just for himself.  This is after he'd run several blocks from the Noe Library to Starbucks.  (No, I didn't give him any coffee.  He clearly didn't need it.)  Watching him play made me smile.  He had such a good time just running.  Then, before Tom arrived, the boys who were playing inside the gym came running out. The game was evidently over.  They were shouting 'we won, we won!' and exalting.  (Though there was one boy who was lamenting a loss, and several of the winners went over to comfort him.  I thought that was particularly sweet, as they were probably 10 or so.  Old enough to be tough, but clearly still caring about each other.)  These older boys had the same joy of motion that Tai did.  A comfort with their bodies.

I'm sure there are girls who are comfortable in their bodies as well.  I haven't been one of them, at least not since I was probably 5 or 6.  And I haven't been friends with any of them (maybe because I didn't play sports?  I'm not sure.)  I'm also sure there are boys who are not comfortable with or in their bodies, though I have known only one or maybe two. I just know that I have a barely civil relationship with my body.  When I'm not actively sick, or in pain, I mostly ignore that I have a body.  Once in a while, though, I find pride in my body.  When I was pregnant, I felt powerful.  Breastfeeding feels powerful too, though in a different way.  But these times are rare.  Even so, I aim to do everything I can so Tai can hold on to this joy he has in his physicality.  I want him to know that even if he's not 'perfectly' built for whatever reason, he can still love this flesh that moves him from place to place.  That lets him dance.

~ * ~

In other, less high-falutin' news, I'm still working on the anxiety.  This weekend got me into a bit of a spin.  I'm putting a call in to my psychiatrist to see if the meds need tweaking.

Instead of NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), I think I'm going to do WriSoMiFu (Write Something, you Miserable Fuck) on LJ.  It would be better than nothing.  I haven't finished a NaNoWriMo project yet, and I couldn't keep working on my novel for it this year.  So, instead of losing a month of work on my novel (hahaha) I am going to try something new.  Plus, this community sounds like a laugh.
aubreym: tai, smiling (tai)
Dear Tai,

I can't believe you are almost two years old.  This time is flying faster than I ever could have imagined.  You're so tall, just two inches short of three feet tall.  You dance and run down hills and jump and go up and down stairs.  You kick and throw balls.  You talk and sing.  You are a person already, and I can still remember when it took all of your concentration to reach out and grab a spoon from the table in front of you. Now you're using a spoon to eat lentil soup and spaghetti squash casserole (though you still have trouble getting all of the food in your mouth and not on your shirt.) You charm everyone with your smile and your flirting.

I can't even keep up with all of the words you know.  You call Grandma 'Bah', which you came up with all by yourself.  You call her dog Lasa 'las' and Little Dog is 'LD'.  Luna is 'loons'.  Cocoa is 'doh-doh'.  It cracks you up endlessly to say 'No, loons!'  'Quiet, dogs!' and 'No paw, doh-doh!' You call Dottie and Peter and Liam by name (I love the way you say 'eee-um' for Liam).

You have recently decided that showering is one of the most fun things ever.  Neither daddy nor I can shower alone in the morning anymore.  You have to come with us and you're willing to stay in the shower through both of our showers and even longer.  You'd probably stay in there all morning if we let you.

Your favorite song is "Boom boom Pow" by the Blackeyed Peas and you ask for it almost every day.  When we first started listening to it, you asked for it almost every hour.  I'm pretty sure I've heard it a hundred times now.  You've got a pretty eclectic taste in music - when we were walking down Bennington last week we heard someone listening to classical music at top volume and you danced to that too.  When we saw Breakfast with Enzo (sort of rag-time, bluegrass kids music) you danced and clapped and bopped to the beat.

Everything small is 'baby'.  A little pumpkin is a baby pumpkin.  A little stick is a baby stick.  Bigger ones are either Mommy or Daddy.

Your favorite things to do include: going to the playground, going to the dog park with Grandma and her dogs, playing with your bubble blower, drawing with markers, drawing outside with chalk, and building robots with Daddy.

Halloween is coming and you're looking forward to it.  You love to say 'pupkin' and you know that ghosts say 'boo'.  You are a little nervous about some things - like skeletons (which I think you get from Mommy, though I'm trying not to act nervous around you).  You like witches and bats.  I can't wait to dress you up and take you trick-or-treating.  The holidays are going to be especially fun this year - you'll be able to participate and remember and understand.

I can't wait to see it through your eyes.


aubreym: tai, smiling (tai)
It was a rough day for Mommy and Tai.  We woke up and had our early morning routine.  Daddy got ready and went off to work, though he was still feeling under the weather.  Mommy and Tai went downstairs for breakfast.  It got to be about 9:45 or so and Mommy was just about to get Tai dressed.  He decided he wanted to 'daw' (draw) so she told him to find his paper (while she checked her email).  He only took a few steps when he tripped and fell.  He cried, and Mommy picked him up saying, "Oh, you're fine".

That's when she noticed the blood.

Bloody pic below )
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
Dear Tai,

I wish I were better when you are sick.  I take good care of you, I hold you and cuddle you.  I give you medicine if you need it, juice and water and what food you want.  I nurse you if it doesn't make you gag and you want it.  But I can't make you feel better and I wish with all of my heart that I could.  It hurts to see you feeling so poorly.  Your smile and exuberance are totally gone.  You just want to lay on the couch with me or Daddy and watch TV.  When you're healthy you don't want to sit still for even a whole episode of Sesame Street. 

Your Mimi and Popa and your Uncle Andrew visited you this past weekend.  Even though Andrew was sick, you had such a good time with him.  Unlike your Daddy and me, he loves sports and you both spent some good time watching 'ut-baw' (or foot-ball).  He couldn't even go to the bathroom without you saying 'An-doo, An-doo.'  Your Mimi loved to draw with you, and your Popa had the best time going down the slide with you.  You impressed them with your words and your running and your love of eating (especially olives).  None of them could believe how much you've grown up, just since June.  They had to search out a real 'ba-ket-baw' (basketball) for you, and you love it.  

I can't believe how much you've grown myself.  You are saying two and three word 'sentences'.  You talk about 'boo eyes' and 'boo shoes' and you can ask for juice by name.  You ask to use the drinking fountain by making slurp, slurp sounds.  You know several colors pretty well, and you can almost say 'orange'.  You love riding in the truck with Daddy, and when you both took a trip to Ikea you didn't stop saying 'tuck' until you hit Oakland.  You like to echo the last couple of words of what we're saying, and it's inspired me to start cleaning up my language.  

You have been growing impatient with Story time, but you still love to sing along and dance.  You are starting to play with other kids, like Talya and Dottie.  You have a great time running and laughing with Dottie.  Balls are still your favorite - throwing, kicking, trying to catch.  If anyone, anywhere has a ball, you want to participate.  You want to read stories every night and during potty time.  Your favorite books are about Wibbly Pig and Winnie the Pooh, though you still love your dog books.  And 'Runaway Bunny' has been a very popular potty pick as well. 

Sometimes I wish I could be a better mom - when I'm overly anxious, or short-tempered, or irritable.  I know no one is perfect, but I've been more off than usual lately and I wish that you didn't have to be a part of that.  I'm going to try to get things back to a more stable place, but I hope you'll forgive me for the mistakes I make.

I do love you.  Always.  Don't forget that.

~ Your Mommy
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
Because most of my words have been going novel-ward for a change, and also because I'm tired... I'm going to do a brief Tai-update in photo format.  I'd update about myself in the same way, but I don't have that many pictures of me (thank god).

Read more... )

aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
Apparently I didn't avoid Tai's cold after all.  I'm sore-throat, mucus girl this evening.  And I'm tired - though that could be from the rough sleep night last night.  I need to remember to give Tai tylenol before bed since he's still working on his bottom molars.  So, instead of working on my novel pages that are due tomorrow, I'm posting the bits and pieces I've been thinking about for the past few days.

Tai has started saying two words together once in a while.  The other day Tom slept in the guest room (he'd been out drinking and if he comes home late and beer-full he tends to wake me up with insane levels of snoring).  When Tai woke up he wondered where Tom was.  I said we should go find him and called 'Where are you?'  After a minute, Tai echoed me - 'Are you?  Are you?'  Complete with sing-song tone and shrug.  I thought he just copied me, but today he was looking for me and he said, "Mama?  Are you?"  And then I died of the kyute.

He's singing more, and the other day when he started to play with his Little People farm he sang 'e-i-e-i-o' (of Old MacDonald) all of his own volition.

We've been going to Story Time at Red Hill books pretty regularly.  It helps to push his one nap to around midafternoon so neither of us loses our mind before Tom gets home.  And it's fun for him to hang out with other kids and sing songs.  It's hard though - he's so exuberant.  He likes to go right up to the person who is doing the story time and touch their legs or just be close.  He tends to vocalize his excitement and to race back to me, sometimes barreling right through other kids.  On the one hand, I want to teach him appropriate behavior (whatever that is) but I don't want to stifle his enthusiasm or make him feel like he can't be himself.  I want him to have fun, to express his enjoyment.  It is a story hour for kids his age, and usually the people who are leading seem to enjoy his pleasure.  I've spent so much of my life worrying about doing the right thing, acting the right way, fitting in... I don't want him to be stuck with all of that fear.  But I also don't want people to dislike being around him.  I know this push/pull is only going to get more obvious as he gets older and goes to preschool.   

I've also been reading a book about being fat in America, and one of the short essays is about the author who was told she was fat ever since she was three and four.  It stuck with her, the memory of being considered fat and therefore inferior, even from such a young age.  I am not saying Tai is fat - I don't believe he is.  But people often comment about how big he is.  Sure, he's sturdy.  I never worry about him getting run over when he's in a crowd of toddlers.  I do, however, want to avoid too much body commentary, even in ways that seem harmless now.  For example - so many people say 'he's so big!  He's going to be a football player!'  This sounds good enough - but what if he grows up to be average, or smaller than average?  Will he feel like he's not as good because he doesn't have that build?

I want to be aware as I bring Tai up.  I want to help him to feel comfortable in his skin.  It's not a feeling that's easy to come by in our culture.  
aubreym: tai, smiling (tai)
  Dear Tai,

I can't believe you are almost a year and a half old.  As I was saying to your Grandma earlier today - sometimes it feels like you've been a toddler for a long time. I can barely remember when you were an infant!  Even when you're challenging, you are also so much fun and so amazing.  You are growing up so quickly.

Lately you've been loving to sing - songs of your own (though I usually don't understand your words), and also songs that you learn from me and your Grandma.  You enjoy the Eensy Weensy Spider.  You can do most of the signs that go with the words and your favorite part is "washed the spider out".  It almost always makes you grin.  Today, for the first time, you asked me for "If you're happy and you know it" out of the blue.  You clapped and then did the 'hooray!" part and when I guessed what you wanted, you were so pleased.  

We're working together on the communication front.  You're learning more and more words, and I'm pretty good at guessing what you mean other times.  You say 'on' and 'off', 'up' and 'down', 'knee', 'eat', 'juice', 'puffs', 'moo'.  You still point, usually emphatically.  You know what you want and how you want it.  You know what a lot of animals say - dogs, cats, cows, horses, pigs (you do the snorting sound), sheep, ducks, lizards (sticking out tongue), bunnies (wrinkle nose), fish (open mouth), owls (hoo hoo).  You enjoy sounds - you mimic sirens and the ring that Grandma's livingroom clock makes.

You had your first kiss just the other day.  On Friday we went down to Red HIll books to check out a story hour and happened to meet up with Mara and her daughter Dottie, from our Mom's Group.  After the story hour, Mara and I got coffee while you and Dottie raced around Progressive Grounds.  At one point Mara said, "Dottie, do you want to give Tai a kiss?"  She didn't seem to, but you headed right over and stood in front of her.  When it was clear she wasn't going to make the first move, you leaned forward and then Dottie did kiss you.  It was adorable - if only I had my camera out!  You played with her for quite a while.  I'm hoping that you two become good friends.

You are really moving now.  You run, you walk forwards and backwards, you can get a bit of air when you jump, you can really dance.

We traveled back East and to Michigan to visit family again this month.  We celebrated your Daddy's cousin's, Madison, coming of age.  You stayed up late and danced and played with my bangles and were the life of the party.  You had a fabulous time playing basketball with your uncles, Kenny, Andrew and Patrick.  You played with your Grandpa Harmon's cane and explored his garden.  You played piano with your cousin David and the guitar with Grandpa Harmon.  You even enjoyed the Smithsonian museums we went through.  You are becoming quite an adept traveller.

Daddy went to China over the past week - and for the first time you really seemed to notice he was gone.  Or at least you were better able to communicate it.  You often said, "Dada?"  And when we were going to bed at night, you'd look over at his spot and ask about him again.  When he got home on Sunday, we all lay down in bed together and you had the biggest grin in the world.  You kept saying, "Mama Dada, mama dada" and every so often while you were nursing, you'd glance over at him and smile.  

It is so good to be a family.  I am blessed.

Love always and forever,

aubreym: tai, smiling (tai)
Here is Tai, all dressed up for the 4th of July, playing the drums with a guy we met on Hippie Hill in Golden Gate park.  He was drawn by all of the drumming, wanting to dance and participate.  It took him a few minutes to warm up to the guy with the drums enough so that he actually played - but then he would have spent the rest of the day here.  

He's been having a tough time the last couple of days.  His bottom molars are coming very very slowly and I think it's hurting him.  He's drooling like crazy, chewing on his fingers, nursing a lot more than he had been, and throwing a temper tantrum at the drop of a hat.   It's not the end of the world, though, because of two mitigating factors.  1. He's pretty easily distracted after a bit, and 2. He's been having tantrums about funny stuff.

Last night I was doing some cleaning down in the basement and Tom was hanging out with Tai.  Suddenly I heard Tai start to freak out.  After a bit I went up to see what was going on.  Tom was in the kitchen cooking, and Tai was in his high-chair, crying.   Apparently Tai went into the kitchen and pointed at the fridge.  Tom asked what he wanted and Tai said something that sounded like 'broccoli'.  He hasn't said anything that complicated before, so Tom tried to figure out what he meant.  After offering several things (juice, cheese, fruit) Tom finally opened up the vegetable drawer (where Tai was pointing) and held up the broccoli.  That's what Tai wanted.  Tai cried for the ten or so minutes it took to cook the broccoli, then happily munched some down.  Must have broccoli now, Dad.

Today Tai and I went to pick up some cereal for me at the Good Life grocery store.  While I picked up some bananas, Tai found the strawberries. He clearly expressed our need for a container of berries.  (He was right.)  He could barely wait until I put them up on the cash register belt to have one.  The cashier grinned at us and said that he had the best hissy fit she'd ever seen - fruit fits.  He and I both ate a berry on the walk home and they were so sweet.

aubreym: tai, smiling (tai)
Or, technically, 16 months and a week.  Ooops, I'm behind again.  If you're reading these, Tai, I'm sure you aren't surprised because I'm late much more often than I'm on time.  And if I am on time, I usually slide into my seat at the last minute, out of breath, with my hair all crazy.  I suppose it's possible that I might change in time, but I haven't yet.

Dear Tai,

We had your one year checkup today (I am so very behind, and Dr. Treece's office has been slammed!) and I got to see just how much you've grown.  While you aren't off the charts, you are certainly topping them.  Your head circumference is 50cm (19.7 in) and at the 97th percentile.  You weigh 31.25 pounds, which is also at the 97th percentile.  And you are 33.25 inches tall, a none-too-shabby 89th percentile.  Even though I know you have grown (you are no longer swallowed up by your crib, and when you stretch out across my lap to nurse for naps or night you barely fit), I can barely believe you are almost three feet tall already.  It looks like you'll take after your Daddy in height, which is good if you have basketball aspirations.
long letter is long )

You are my sweetest boy and these words don't do justice to that.  Every day you amaze me.

I love you with all of my heart and that will never change.

Your Momma

aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
Hipster Diner

Saturday morning - breakfast at The Hipster Diner (tm).  We have to go bright and early, before the hipsters wake up from their party-sleeps.  Otherwise I get cranky while waiting in line to get a seat.  Tai impresses even the hippest of hipsters with his adorableness.  Fortunately there was no skinny dude in low-rise jeans sitting at the bar and showing a good two plus inches of crack.  Pancakes were delicious, and Tai ate almost a whole fruit cup himself.

Read more... )
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
I'm not sure what my issue is this evening.  I'm just in a bad mood.   I shouldn't be - we had a good weekend.  Even though it was hot, fun was had by all.  We took Tai out to Crissy Field after breakfast this morning.  We spent an hour playing in a little inlet off the Bay.  At first he was a bit hesitant of the water, but after just a few minutes he was happily splashing around, running in and out of the water, sitting down in the shallow part and generally having a blast.  I was wishing I'd brought my swimsuit as well.  He spent a little bit of time knocking down the sandcastles Tom built, but he preferred to be in the water.  He takes after Momma that way.

Last night I got together with twirlgrrl and we spent several hours chatting about anything and everything - totally uninterrupted by any (adorable and wonderful, but attention-hording) children.  There's nothing better than hanging out with lovely mama-friends.  She gave me things to ponder, as well as a good book suggestion.  I spent some time today reading "The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test".  I can't believe I haven't read it before.  I am a bad bad hippie.  I'm enjoying it, especially the style of Tom Wolfe's writing.

This afternoon Tom and Tai went to the playground for a while and I headed to the coffee shop for some writing time.  Unfortunately I just couldn't get into the headspace for novel-writing.  I managed to get a (very very) little bit written, but it feels wooden and limping.  Anthony is supposed to be flirting with a woman and the dialog has come out stilted.  I think a good portion of my funk is because the writing wasn't going well at all.  It's one pre-Tai passion that I've stuck with and when it's not going well I feel like I'm a boring dork that doesn't think about anything other than parenting.

My goals for the upcoming week:  

1. Spend a portion of Tai's nap-time each day working on the novel.  Writing, brainstorming, outlining, whatever.  I just need to get back into the world.

2.  Spend more time with another adult, even if Tai is there too.  Talking to other women helps make everything better.

And - to balance out some of the whine, gratitude.

1.  Watching Tai learn - new words of the past couple of days: hot and no.
2.  Kick ass women friends both online and IRL.
3.  Parks
4.  Dogs who always love to cuddle, even when I'm bitchy and grumpy and whiny.
5.  Eddie Vedder's voice (always makes me smile)
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)

  All in all, it was a pretty kick ass Mother's Day.  It was my second, but the first where I feel like I'm really starting to get that I *am* Tai's mom.  It's surprisingly hard to transition from 'daughter' and 'child' to 'mother'.  I keep finding myself surprised when I refer to myself as 'Mommy' to Tai.  Yesterday morning we were having breakfast at Denny's (yes, I know.) and Tom and I were drawing on Tai's placemat to show him how to use crayons.  Tom was writing names, and he wrote 'Tai', then 'Daddy' then 'Mommy' with arrows pointing at the respective person.  Even 15 months in, I found myself giving a little start of surprise that Mommy meant *me*.  Not my mom. Not one of my friends who are also moms.  Me.  As I said to a friend of mine, "Does this mean we're adults?"  He (wisely) responded, "No, I think we're just smarter kids."  

Possibly taking the Jewish Sabbath approach, last night around dinner time, Tom handed me a drink and said that since it was mother's day, I didn't have to lift a finger until Sunday night.  I said, "but what about this huge pile of laundry?"  He said he'd take care of it.  (While he didn't, it was the thought that counted, because neither did I.)  While Tai had another 'let's be awake and party at 2 am' night, otherwise I've had a very relaxing 24 hours.

Tom got up with Tai at 7am, and let me go back to sleep (as usual).  He brought me breakfast in bed around 9:30.  We lazed around for the rest of the morning, then got an early lunch at the hipster diner.  I had my favorite vegetarian Reuben (spinach, mushrooms, sauerkraut, 1000 island dressing on rye) and a chocolate shake.  Thus fortified, we headed out to the Sunset to the zoo.  Tai hasn't been to the zoo yet, and it was free for Mother's Day.  We tired ourselves out and got to see a ton of animals.  Tai's favorites were the penguins and the kangaroos.  Both times when we were going to move on, he signed 'more'.  He also enjoyed the giraffes and the monkeys.  He wasn't so impressed with the sleepy lions, tigers, and rhinos.  I was disappointed to see that the gorilla area was closed.  When I was there (years ago now), I liked that best.

Tom also got me flowers (gorgeous sunflowers) and Tai picked out a picture frame for me.  We were stopping in a camera store a couple of weeks ago and Tai picked it up and brought it to me twice.

My favorite gifts, though, were the cards I got.  One from Mom, one from Tom's mom and one from Tom (also signed by Tai).  The one from my mom was funny - she wrote, "Happy Mother's Day to a great mom (It takes one to know one)."  Hee!  The one from Judy was sweet.  She wrote, "Thank you so much for being such an outstanding mother to Tai.  He is such a calm, happy, loving little boy.  I think he is so happy because he has a great mom.  Much love."  And Tom wrote, "You are an amazing mother  who is doing an exceptional job raising our incredible boy.  Thank you for staying home and making him.  I love you more than ever."

I treasure both of those cards because there are so many times I doubt myself.  It's good to know other people think I'm doing a good job.  Especially Tom.  I am so lucky.

aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)

Playing with Einstein
Originally uploaded by Katlet
Dear Tai,

I'm sorry I missed your letter last month. I was far too busy playing with you to actually write something down. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

We have had a busy month. We went down to the desert again to soak up more sun and spend even more time in the pool. This time the pool heater didn't break, so we got to swim every day, which made you happy. You take after your Pisces Momma and love to swim. You would have spent the whole day in the pool, if you could have.

The same day we got back, Melly came to meet you - all the way from the frozen north! She brought you some cool gifts, and kept your Momma busy. She also babysat you while I got a haircut and went out for dinner with Daddy. She taught you important things, like not to put food in your nose, but in your 'gobber'. She played peek-a-boo like no one else. She baked cookies and encouraged your Momma to explore places like Alcatraz and Muir Woods. You didn't want her to go - and neither did I.

We didn't have time to feel lonely though, because Mimi and Popa arrived even before Melly departed. After two weeks of non-stop attention, you were a bit disappointed to have only me around once everyone went home. Fortunately PawPaw and Grandpa Des came up from San Diego last weekend.

You keep growing at unbelievable speed. You can walk backwards, turn in a circle, slide down the slide all by yourself. You're pretty close to running and have nearly mastered going up and down hills. You don't like crawling on stairs much - you really want to walk like the big kids. You can drink through a straw and have mastered the sippy cup.  You love to dance - bouncing up and down and shaking your arms.  You really want to jump, though you can't quite get your feet off the ground.

You both nod yes and shake your head no, though sometimes you get them backwards. You know the sign for 'more', 'potty' and 'all done'. (Though sometimes you sign 'more' when you're really done.) You're learning the sign for 'eat', though 'drink' is still eluding you. You're learning words, as well - Daddy and I just need to learn to understand you!

You say 'moe' for 'more'. You say 'ba' for bye (and wave as well). You can say 'du' for duck. You sometimes say 'da da' for Daddy and 'ma' for me. Sometimes you're willing to copy what someone else says - Popa taught you to say 'earthquake', though you didn't repeat it every time he asked. Tonight, when I was rocking you to sleep, I showed you the moon out your bedroom window and you pointed to it and said, 'Mn.'

You are still a champion eater. Tomatoes are a new favorite - you like them best when we're visiting Grandma in the desert. Mimi bought you some here, and before she even gave them to you, you saw them on the counter and signed 'nurse', 'more' and pointed at them. Meaning "I want tomatoes" of course. You like pasta and beans and lentils and sandwiches. Crackers and cereal and milk and yogurt and cheese. Watermelon. Strawberries are another favorite. You don't like green beans unless they're hidden in soup. You like spinach if it's in an omelet. You like potatoes and pizza. Mostly, you like whatever someone else is eating. When we went out to eat with Grandpa Des, you preferred to pick off his plate - he was kind enough to not mind.

At Grandma's urging, I started putting you on the potty when you're starting to poop, and you have learned to poop on the toilet like a big boy. We go when you wake up in the morning, when you wake up from your nap and whenever else you sign 'potty'. (You've learned to sign 'potty' when I'm trying to rock you to sleep so you can get up again.)

Dogs are still one of your favorite animals. You are playing with Einstein in this picture - you played tug of war with him and his Frisbee for quite some time.

I love watching you learn more every day. You amaze me.

Love always,
Your Momma
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Swinging Tai)

Ah, so thirsty!
Originally uploaded by Katlet
We're having another rough sleep patch lately. Something needs to change, but I'm not sure what that will be. I still think co-sleeping is good for us (all of us), and I'm not ready to night wean yet, and I'm not so much into cry it out. Oddly enough, it's hard to think creatively when one isn't sleeping.

Last night we went to bed at 11. Tai nursed until 12, when I finally said enough because I needed to sleep. We went around about it until 1 with much whining and crying (mostly on Tai's part) until I tried taking him to the bathroom just to break the monotony (and he seemed to indicate that he wanted to go). After that he decided it was play time and he partied until 2. It was a rough day for Mama, only made better by much caffeine. Tai, however, took a 2.5 hour nap (!) this morning and was in a good mood the rest of the day.

I don't know what's going on - he might be teething. He might have a cold (he's pretty snotty and coughing, but the snot has been going on for two weeks now). No fever or anything else. I just wish we could go back to our usual routine of five minute wake-ups every few hours.

In an effort to give us both something to do this afternoon, since he wouldn't be napping any more and I was sleep-deprived - I decided to head out to the Botanical Gardens. We spent a little over an hour wandering around. Tai liked that he could just wander where-ever he wanted without me steering.

We saw some wildlife - 2 turtles (one sunning, one swimming), 2 geese, 2 ducks, several tiny fish, several gulls and about a million squirrels. Tai wanted to touch all of them, and was bummed that I wouldn't let him.

After our park wander, we headed to Starbucks for my second shot of caffeine of the day. Tai had a box of apple juice - his first juice box! He enjoyed it even more than the donut I shared with him. I tried for the library after that (assuming he'd doze in the stroller) but didn't have any luck. Even after all the walking he'd done, he still didn't want to be confined.

We'll ignore the fact that he barfed down the front of my shirt while I was nursing him this evening. (I'm pretty sure it was phlegm gagging, but whatever the deal, I smell like baby-hork, even after cleaning up and changing shirts.)

Even though I'm tired, I am still enjoying this motherhood trip. To be totally trite - I'm not loving every minute, but pretty much every other minute. It's the hardest job I'll ever love.
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)

aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Swinging Tai)
Lately, when Tai wakes up before I do (as usual, since he wakes up before 7am and I am never awake that early by choice) he likes to get my attention by grabbing my eyeball and turning my head to face him.  Fortunately, he's in a very good mood at this point, so his smiling face makes me smile too.  Then he reaches over me and grabs my glasses off of the nightstand.  I always tell him not to play with them, so he just hands them to me so I can put them on.  Then he reaches over me again and picks up "How Big is a Pig", also from the nightstand.  If I am trying to sneak in a couple more seconds of dozing while he looks at the book himself, he'll take my hand and pull it out from under the covers, then put the book into my hand.  He may not be able to say, "Read to me, dammit!"  but it's clear that he means it.

Just yesterday, when I was reading the book for the millionth time (yes, I pretty much have it memorized now) he did something new.  There's a long string of opposites (some cats are wild, some cats are tame; some cows are fat, some cows are thin; some dogs are quick, some dogs are slow; some hens are in, some hens are out....) and in the string is "Some frogs are jumpy, some frogs are still".  When I read 'jumpy' he actually bounced up and down all on his own!  I was totally surprised, since I'd never shown him 'jumpy' in relation to this book.  He just got it himself!

He's also started walking backwards, sometimes - though he doesn't tend to look where he's going - so I have to make sure he doesn't run into anyone or anything. 

We're heading down to the desert on Sunday - wish us good traveling luck!
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Swinging Tai)
I am beyond tired tonight.  I haven't been napping with Tai lately because his nap is often a couple of hours long, and sometimes he drops the morning nap entirely - and when the naps are longer I actually feel like I have time to complete a thought.  I don't want to waste that time on something insignificant, like sleep!  Unfortunately his night-sleeps aren't going very well.  He wakes up a lot and wants to nurse for long periods of time.  I'm pretty sure he's teething.  I just wish the teeth would come through already!  I'm starting to consider night weaning, or at least sleeping in the guest bed so Tom can have a turn at waking up.

In more fun, less brain-dead news - Tai is walking really really well now.  On Friday evening we were visiting John and Kendra and their kids and Tai randomly started walking backward.  I don't think I've seen him do that before. 

Yesterday Tom and I took him to a Vietnamese restaurant in the Mission for lunch and the (really kind) waiter brought him a plastic cup of water with a straw and Tom taught him how to drink from the straw.  I was pretty proud of him (as usual).

Tai's also getting into dancing.  Instead of just bobbing a bit, he's getting into it, bouncing and waving his arms.  We were in the car and a song from Riverdance (hush, I know I'm lame) came on and Tai started dancing in his car seat.  He thought it was totally hilarious when I 'danced' along with him.   He also thinks it's funny when I smell his feet and make a 'pee-eww' sound.  He keeps sticking his feet in my face so I do it over and over.

It seems like there's more to report, but apparently every thought has fled my brain.  Tonight - bed, early.  Hopefully more intelligent post tomorrow.

aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Swinging Tai)
and you're guaranteed to have your baby on the mend within the hour.  Last night Tai didn't nurse all night. He wanted to, he asked to, but it made him gag and he wouldn't actually nurse at all.  By this morning, when Tom changed his diaper, it was mostly dry.  Tom tried to give him water, but Tai just let it dribble down his chin and wouldn't drink.  He still felt warm, too.  I was a bit worried, so I called the triage nurse at Dr. Treece's office.  She said I should probably bring him in.  Of course, by the time I did - he'd taken a little water and peed a bit, and had more energy than he did yesterday.

Unfortunately Dr. Treece was booked, so we saw Dr. Kevin Chu - who also rocks.  I love his bedside manner as well, calm even when Tai was fussing because he was ready to go home and take a nap and also with a good sense of humor.  But Tai definitely prefers Dr. Treece.  He kept looking warily at Dr. Chu, which he never does with Dr. Treece.

Oh!  And an amusing sidenote - when I called back to talk to the nurse, someone answered the phone and said, "St. Luke's pediatrics, Michael speaking..." and I asked for the nurse.  Only after I was transfered that it was Dr. Treece who had answered!  Dude, crazy!

When the nurse weighed Tai, we discovered he's only 28lbs, 7oz.  Up 3oz. from our last appointment at the end of January.  I think he's lost weight from all of the walking he's been doing.  Though the first thing everyone comments on is how big he is.  Even Dr. Chu said what a solid boy he is.  Go mama-milkie!

So the verdict - Tai has a virus.  His fever had gone down, and didn't seem to go up much at all today, maybe a degree or so late in the day.  His ears looked clean, his lungs sounded clear.  His throat was red, but not as bad as if it had been Strep - and his fever was too low for that.  He also wasn't dehydrated and the doctor gave me a couple of ways to check for that in the future (check nailbeds for color - if the color comes right back after pressing, no dehydration.  Also, pinch his belly skin a bit - if it's doughy then there's dehydration.)  He said Tai obviously isn't wasting away, so if he doesn't eat much for a couple of days it's not an issue.  Give him tylenol and try and get him to drink.  If he gets worse, go back in.

Yes, I did a nervous first-time mom trip in, but I figure better safe than sorry.  Tai was clearly on the mend today - he drank some water, nursed a couple of times (like, twice.  I pumped several times) and played.  Also whined and fussed and cried.  He ate about a quarter of an apple, then gagged on the last bite and barfed up a bit - poor kid. I tried applesauce and a bit of jarred babyfood (separate of course) but he didn't want any of either. I'm hoping his appetite comes back soon; it's so weird to have him eat nothing.  And not nurse!  

We did go out a bit this afternoon and just walked down to Cortland in the sun.  Tai enjoyed looking at the flowers and watching all of the bees.  He spent a good 10 minutes by one flowery bush, just watching the bees.  On our way back we met a woman who reminded me to take it slow with him, not rush him along when we go places together, since it's the time for him to really explore and experience everything.  So far I've been pretty good about that.  Truthfully, I enjoy watching him have fun with everyday things.  

I put him in the Ergo when he didn't want to walk anymore, did the back carry.  He seemed to like it, even rested his head on my back for a bit.  I think it's going to be a good way to carry him around when he wants to walk sometimes, but can't walk all the time.  I plan on doing a trek down to the Mission library later this week to see how long I can wear him without killing my back.

In other news, my throat is a little sore tonight.  I hope we weren't Typhoid Mary at Blue's party, or visiting on Monday night.  

Finally my Grace in Small Things list:

1. Tai feeling a bit better
2. Easy access to good doctors
3. Bed
4. My dogs
5. Fresh applesauce

Long Day

Mar. 17th, 2009 09:46 pm
aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)
Poor Tai.  Last night Tai was wanting to nurse a lot, again.  Sometime around 2am I finally said enough and went to rub his head to help soothe him instead.  His head was warm.  Not too hot, but definitely fever warm.  I hadn't exactly expected it, but he hadn't eaten much during the day - which is unusual for him - and Tom said he barely drank any of his bottle before bed, which is also rare.  Poor kidlet - he woke up with a fever and clearly felt like crap all day.  No other symptoms - except for the crying, drooling, hand biting and very little eating.  At least he nursed and had a bit of cheese and half of a cracker.  And some water.  Yum!

But it was a day of holding Tai.  He only played for half an hour or so, and spent the rest of the time on my lap.  We watched a lot of television and had a couple of naps.  Tylenol seemed to help some.  I'm just worried that he might have an ear infection or something important.  There were several times where he really started crying and it took quite a while to console him.  He sounded like he was really hurting - I just wish I could tell where!  If it happens again tomorrow, I might take him to see Dr. Treece.

I really really hope he's feeling better tomorrow, because it was a long day today.  I think I got butt rot from sitting in one place.  And it's so difficult to not be able to make him feel better.  He couldn't even nurse every time because it made him gag.  Poor kid.

In an effor to balance the whiny nature of the post - here are 5 things I'm grateful for, in no particular order.  Partially inspired by Schmutzie.

1. Good mama friends
2. Tom giving me a break in the evening
3. Wine
4. Thin Mints
5. Television


aubreym: Ocean beach at sunset (Default)

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