Thursday, September 23, 2010

Seven months, oh my

My seven-month-old baby boy.  He breaks my heart.  

We've now been experimenting with the solids for a month.  We've had mixed results.  Once he's into a food, he's really into it--but it usually takes a few introductions.  At this point he's had sweet potatoes, rice cereal, bananas, peas, and pears--and in that order.  Despite my deep seeded aversion, he totally likes peas.  We've had to take a few breaks from the solids because of another first.  This month he got sick for the first time.  I have no use for sickness in babies, no use at all.  He's had three vomiting spells and they were each the saddest thing you could ever seen.  Some crappy advice from our former doctor to not nurse him for 12 hours and feed him Pedialyte instead sealed the deal for me in making her our "former" doctor.  We followed that crappy advice (well at least for 6 hours) the first time, and great unhappiness was had by all.  The event did reinforce to me that I should always follow my instincts--they are there for a reason.  We have a new doctor who wears Garfield ties and is a delight.  

And it turns out separation anxiety is not just something puppies get.  Two mornings this week he has broken down in tears when I left him.  This of course caused me to do the same shortly thereafter.  I have, however, figured out how to squeeze in a few extra baby minutes into the day.  It turns out there is a stop for the higher speed/fewer stop Metra trains one mile from our house.  The train ride is only 13 minutes and Eli (and his daddy and puppies) can walk the mile from our house--so my non-Eli-having commute time has been cut from 45 minutes to about 20.  

He's also started to look a bit like me, finally.  More specifically, I think he's started to look like my dad.  It's been funny to look at him and recognize a bit of myself in him.  I think his Aunt Robin was right when she assured me shortly after he was born that babies usually look like their fathers at first so that their fathers will know they are theirs and won't kill them. 

He has come to tolerate sitting quite a bit more and can mostly do it on his own and would totally be allowed to do so on his own if we had a helmet for him.  He can stand with the smallest amount of assistance.  No progress to speak of on the crawling front.  Mostly he gets part of the way there and melts down.  He has discovered that rolling can be a very effective means of both transport and entertainment.  

People often ask me if he is sleeping through the night.  The short answer is pretty much.  The long answer involves my explaining that we co-sleep so any awakenings are  not very long or disruptive.  The long answer usually also involves my having to defend co-sleeping--but that's a whole other post ;-).  Nighttimes for us though are A-OK.

We are finally maybe easing out of swaddling him for naps. We're experimenting with letting him have an arm or two. 

Eli is madly in love with his puppies.  Jack remains his semi-tolerant keeper who enjoys the occasional petting Eli loves to dole out.  He is not as much a fan of the ear pulling.  Eli thinks Leroy is hilarious. Kenny has taken to putting Eli in the Bjorn and chasing Leroy around the house.  This results in great baby giggles.  Baby will also giggle if a dog or person barks at him.  He giggled today when a one-eyed dog came and snatched his sock off of his foot at the dog park.

And finally, this has been the great month of songs.  Singing to him has proven to be an often effective means of curing a crying jag.  It depends on his mood.  Sometimes he needs "Hush Little Baby," and sometimes he needs "Old MacDonald."

Our friends Ben and Julie just had a baby this week, and our friends Patrick and Amy will be doing the same in a couple of months.  I am so excited for them because I know how really awesome it is to have one of these.  

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Redefining okay

As is the case with many monkeys of his age, Eli likes to put anything and everything into his mouth.  As the weeks go by, we find ourselves adopting a more and more lax attitude about what is and is not okay for him to suck on.  Kenny dropped Eli off with me at work over lunch today so that he could run a not-baby-friendly errand.  I was just telling him how Eli grabbed several things off my desk and put them directly into his mouth.   Some coworkers brought over toys for him to play with, and they of course had the same fate.  We feel a bit conflicted--we should probably not let him do that, right?  We should protect him from germs and whatnot?  His contact with germs just seems so inevitable.  Kenny and I both agreed that we do have some standards.  We're not letting him near feces or meat juices.  Ah, parenting.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

These are the people in your neighborhood

I can't go for walks without being teased by the whole neighborhood.  It started a few weeks ago.  I was walking Eli, Leroy and Jack.  We came upon a group of teenage boys with their pants belted around their knees.  I heard one of them say to the other, "Look, the wife's got the baby."  He said to me, "It's about time you gave your husband a day off."  Yesterday, I obliged Kenny's request for a family walk.  I wore Eli in the Bjorn and Kenny had the two dogs.  We were walking down the street when I heard a guy shouting at us from his second floor balcony.  "I've never seen you with the baby."  In all fairness, I always do Sunday mornings, but it continued today. Kenny decided to go for an 80-mile bike ride without training today (yep).  A man with a Green Bay shirt and a stroller and a homeless woman both commented on their unfamiliarity with me in the dog/baby walking context. The homeless woman went so far as to stop me a second time and say, "I know why you're walking them!  He's watching football."

Kenny got to try out my wrap last week (pictured above). The Bjorn was closed for repairs after a vomiting episode.  He walks the crew first thing in the morning while I shower, once around noon, and again before I get home from work.  If the neighborhood were a bar, he would be a regular.  A very conspicuous regular, surrounded in adorable.

Monday, September 6, 2010


Many of our friends do races.  Our friend, Lisa, recently did a triathlon.  This triggered Kenny to make the sort of comment that he often makes in these circumstances.  "Oh yeah, I could definitely do that tomorrow if I wanted to."  I'm pretty sure he in fact made this comment to her.  I laugh at him when he says things like this because of all things, running?  Running is not his strong suit.  The last time he went for a run was eight years ago when he went accepted an invitation to go on a run with my roommate at the time so he could get permission to date me.*  I think his comments belittle/underestimate the work people do to get ready for these races.  So.  When he made this comment in regards to Lisa's triathlon I called his bluff.  Incredulous that I had no faith in his abilities, he agreed to run 10K** to prove me wrong.  Saturday night he created his running play list.  He put a scrap of paper with his name and my phone number in his shoe (should he keel over with a heart attack halfway through somebody might be able to call me and let me know where to pick up the body).  After considerable stretching and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, he took off Sunday morning.  He returned 65 minutes later looking surprisingly alive.  For the rest of the morning he made passive agressive comments to Eli about how you should never let anybody tell you you can't do something.  

Around noon he took the dogs on a two-block walk that lasted about 40 minutes.  We were meeting another friend Lisa at the zoo later.  The train is about a mile from the zoo.  There was much limping and there were many, many breaks.  He trailed us by about 20 feet for much of the walk.

I guess the lesson we all learned from this is that yes, it is possible to run a 10K with no training.  Yes, Kenny in particular can run a 10K with no training. But no, it is not a good idea to run a 10K with no training.

*Why did he have to ask permission you ask.  It's a long story.  
** Was this a 10K as in an organized event wherein people compete or run for charity or such?  No.  This was the 10K Kenny.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The next 8 years.

Eight years ago this evening I was on a first date with the love of my life.  Over the last eight years, we have (in no particular order)
  1. Graduated from college.
  2. Moved to Washington, DC.
  3. Survived my going to grad school.
  4. Had our first and second and maybe even third real jobs.
  5. Traveled to Las Vegas, Chicago, NYC, Philly, Costa Rica, Spain, Williamsburg, Breckenridge, and Portland.
  6. Gotten married.
  7. Taken planes, trains, buses, and automobiles to Kansas City and St. Louis one million times.
  8. Adopted Jack.
  9. Moved to Chicago.
  10. Adopted Leroy.
  11. Bought a loft and a condo.
  12. Evicted a tenant.
  13. Had a baby!
  14. Lost two of my grandparents.
  15. Seen Megan and Andrew, Carri and Derek, Sutton and John, Amy and Patrick, and Lindsey and TJ get married.
  16. Hosted six seders.
  17. Consumed approximately 500 bottles of wine.
To celebrate the occasion, we went out for Chinese and are now sipping on a bottle of pinot we brought back from Oregon and contemplating the next eight years.  Do you know that we will have a second grader eight years from now?  I've decided we should make a list of things we want to do in the next eight years, and so that we won't lose that list--we're putting it here on the interweb.  Maybe it will make us more accountable too.  During the next eight years, let's
  1. Take (swing) dance lessons.
  2. Travel to the south of France.
  3. Take Eli to a water park.
  4. Have another baby.
  5. Start canning.
  6. Make cheese.
  7. Remodel two bathrooms.
  8. At least one of us get their dream job.
  9. Take Eli to the Magic House and Grant's Farm in St. Louis.
  10. Take Eli to Kaleidoscope in KC.
  11. Go on a weekend getaway leaving munchkin(s) with a grandparent.
  12. Make friends with people who own a boat.
  13. Sell a loft and a condo.
Anything critical you think we're forgetting here?  The list is open for suggestions.