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Wow. That was a long time. Quiet can last a while in my world, but that was long even for me. The good news is that I’m up for a chat again. Good news for sure.

A brief look at what’s been going on around here since last time.

  • Illness for everyone.
  • Pulling up and walking with his push toys are a few of Monkey’s favorite things, but the tip-top of his list is Mommy. I’ve never seen a more exuberant Mommy’s boy.
  • Yogi has begun reading to us and it is my most favorite thing. After learning about a book called Jamberry from R and J we picked it up at the library and Yogi was immediately hooked. One night after having the book at our house for a few weeks he started reading each page! Neither of us could believe it. Yes, I know he’s only memorized it but it’s tons of fun. His most triumphant line is “Berryband, Merryband, Jamming in Berryland!”
  • Shocking amounts of travel and visitors. It is not an overstatement to say that when we haven’t been traveling, we’ve had people visiting. For many (most?) people this would get filed under Yay!, for me it gets filed under There are Aspects of this that are Quite Nice, but Largely this is Overwhelming and Just Too Much.
  • The emotional weight of a toddler is heavy. The intensity of Yogi’s emotions are frequently more than I can bear. More on this in another post.
  • Monkey is transitioning to one nap! It seems a bit early, but if this means that I can get ONE nap time for both boys than praise be. Beginning to glimpse the light at the end of the no break for Mama during daylight hours tunnel. I’m pretty sure that when we settle into this groove all of the angels of heaven will sing. Loudly and melodiously. For real.
  • A bit random, yes, but I offer the following image* in the spirit of Holy Sh@t, There is a God! You’re welcome.

abby-wambach-420

  • We had a brief brush with Montessori, but we’ve decided to keep Yogi where he is. Ultimately the decision came down to sending our three-year old (in August) to school five days a week or keeping him to two mornings a week. We both loved this particular school, but feel committed to keeping him home for now.
  • I’m falling in love with our yard. In the last several weeks we have planted a small garden (spinach, kale, peas, carrots and beets) and two trees (japanese maple and japanese weeping cherry). We’ve also set up two bird feeders (one with suet cake which Yogi says in the MOST adorable way) and a hummingbird feeder. The boy is all about birds so we’ve bought him a pocket guide of birds in our part of the country and he has star stickers for the ones that we’ve spotted. He routinely identifies this as his favorite book.
  • My glorious discovery of this book. Anyone read this? I have found this book to be inspiring AND useful. A great combination.

ItsOK

* In case you are unfamiliar this is my girlfriend. Her name is Abby Wambach. Clearly she is quite lovely.

"I’ll Eat You Up, I Love You So"

Perhaps this is a sign that it’s time to take Where the Wild Things Are out of heavy rotation.  Whatever the cause, it has recently become challenging to take a picture of Yogi.  Why?  Because as soon as he hears the camera, he’s off.  The very moment I’ve removed the lens cap and clicked into the right position, I’ve got this:

Give the boy an additional 10 seconds and I get this:

And yes, the mouth is poised and ready for camera chomp.

A Bit Bookish

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Last week Yogi and I attended a Musical Petting Zoo at the downtown library.  I had never heard of such a thing, but what a great idea.  He looks like a natural, no?  I think bongos may just be in his future. And yes, I did dress him for the occasion.  Nothing like a Rock & Roll baby.

What follows are three early indicators that Yogi might just be a bit bookish.

  1. It is clear that books top Yogi’s list of favorite things.  In spite of the fact that he has recently acquired 2 cars, 1 truck and 1 taxi, the boy prefers a book.  He loves to sit on the floor and turn pages. He can do this for quite awhile.  He also enjoys holding a book in the air while spinning in a circle.  Weird but cute.
  2. Yogi sits in the rocker with one of us (me at naptime and my wife at bedtime) and reads at least two books (don’t even TRY to read just one) before settling into his crib.  Sometime last week, he started turning the pages.  This blows me away and has quickly become my new favorite thing.  He knows when it’s time and though it’s easier with thicker pages he can manage the thin ones with a little help.  Very cool.
  3. On Saturday we had to break out a band-aid for the first time.  What lead to the injury?  Manic page turning.  My son’s first injury was a paper cut.  Atta boy.  😉

 

The Happy Eater

First, thanks for all of the great book suggestions!  I loved getting the comments and have quite a nice -read list as a result.  Comments are fun. 🙂

Finally we have a happy eater.  It seems it really is all about timing, timing and peas.  One day we arranged him in his chair prepared for bored skepticism and were surprised by enthusiasm.  He was ready.  Peas were the gateway food and he continues to beam whenever he sees them in his bowl.  His current favorites (when he can’t get peas) include black beans and cheese, banana, black beans and avocado, pretzels (what can you do? my wife love them), baked apple mush with cinnamon, and cheese.

I’m making him the Super Porridge each morning (recipe here) from Ruth Yaron’s Super Baby Food.  Although making porridge makes me feel a bit like I’m running an orphanage, I LOVE it.  I make mine with brown rice and dry lentils and according to Ruth, this is a complete protein which makes me wildly excited.  Getting my boy off to a good start for the day.  Go me!  Yogi isn’t wild about the porridge, but he eats it each morning without a fuss and when I add bananas and cinnamon he clearly appreciates it.  If you’re into the make-your-own baby food thing, I recommend this book for the tremendous amount of information it covers.  If you can’t get it from a friend (thanks T!), it’s easy to find used.  It’s a great resource although reading it makes me pretty sure I would never want to actually meet Ruth Yaron.  Anyone that detail-oriented frightens me ;).  I can imagine that she might set off all of my perfectionistic anxiety alarms.

The next step is reducing his milk or dropping a bottle.  He gets four bottles a day now and since he’s started eating solids we have just moved him from 6.5 oz pre-solid bottle to 4.5-5 oz each time.  This is working so far, but I’m wondering if we need to cut the milk even more.  Also on the horizon is milk in a sippy cup.  Although we’ve bought three different ones in the hope that the next one would click for him, he still thinks the sippy cup is a rattle.  He loves each one, but thinks it’s silly to try to drink out of it.  Anyone have any sippy cup tips or thoughts on the amount of milk he’s getting?

An Aside – Whatcha Reading?

This has nothing (at least explicitly) to do with lesbian baby making or two Mom parenting, but I’m dying to know what you’re reading.  It’s almost July and I have yet to have a truly satisfying summer read.  I am in a slump.  There is no need to summarize or provide commentary unless the spirit moves you, but it would be great fun if you would leave the titles of two books (or 1 or 5) that really knocked your socks off in the comments.  This could be something you read last week or last year or when you were in high school.  The only requirement is that it be a book (or books 🙂 ) that you think everyone should read.

I’ll start.

 

 

Pick and Choose

I’m enjoying my weekly Sunday morning coffee shop writing session, but I’ve run out of creative steam.  Back to the challenge.

Day 14 – How do you typically dress? How do you (or would you) like to dress your kid(s)?

With VERY rare exception, I dress the same way every day.  In cool weather I wear boot cut darkish jeans from Express (Stella fit), a long sleeved, v-neck/boat neck/scoop neck t-shirt in a solid color and Dansko clogs.  In warm weather, the t-shirt becomes short sleeved, the jeans become khaki shorts and the clogs become sandals.  My idea of dressing up involves one of a small handful of interesting tops (usually a fun print) and a pair of jeans one shade darker than the everyday wear.  When I’m feeling frisky, there are heels.

Yogi spends most of his time in onesies or rompers although I’m moving (slowly) towards t-shirts and shorts.  He looks so grown up in actual little boy clothes that on some days it’s just a little too much for me and back in the romper he goes.  I can’t wait for him to have opinions about what he wears.  I secretly hope that he will be be one of those kids who insists on wearing his Superman cape to pre-school.

Day 15 – What was your college experience like? Were you involved in any clubs, groups, etc?

My college experience was one I wouldn’t trade.  I went to a women’s college and the school was a perfect fit for me.  I majored in Psychology and English and I had many fabulous professors and mentors along the way.  The academic side of life was totally satisfying and I am so grateful for the opportunity to be a student in an environment that was both nurturing and challenging.

The social side of college life was dominated by the fact that I was in a relationship from almost the first month of freshman year through graduation.  As I’ve mentioned previously, our relationship was all-consuming.  The kind of thing that you talk about as a learning experience, but only after many, many years have passed.  My girlfriend was publicly sunny and charismatic, and privately jealous and prone to depression.  The girl whom everyone knew and loved.  Unfortunately this kind of bravado is usually fragile and it certainly was with her.  She isolated me from almost everyone else in my life and by the time I realized it I was too stripped down to care.   So while I learned a lot about myself and what is important to me in relationships, I missed out on much of the friendship that I’m sure I could have had.

I was President of the Psychology club and the Psychology Honor Organization (Psi Chi).  I was the Secretary of my Senior class and my girlfriend was President (yeah – it was like that).  We were also both officers in the campus (at the time) LBA (Lesbian-Bisexual Association) – I think they added a T shortly after we graduated.  And just to carry on with this trajectory of stereotypes, we spent a lot of time with the Rugby team – her playing, me cheering.  I also took care of the kids of various faculty members when I wasn’t doing other things.

For someone who spent all four college years in a relationship that was fairly abusive, I managed to have a great time.  If you know Ani’s “Gravel”, on a good day it was kind of like that.

and maybe you can keep me
from ever being happy
but you’re not going to stop me
from having fun

Day 17 – What is your favorite thing about parenthood?  Your least favorite?

My favorite thing about parenthood is Yogi.  I am entirely, all-consumingly smitten with that boy.  My least favorite thing about parenthood is the stuff.  The bottles to be washed, the clothes to be cleaned and folded, the toys underfoot.

Day 18 – How do you feel about astrology? What’s your sign, baby, and do you think it matches your personality?

Astrology entertains me.  I have little (maybe no) faith in its validity, but it’s fun.  I love personality theories and I think of astrology as a wacky personality theory with no empirical evidence.

I am an Aquarius who is close to the cusp of Pisces and a hybrid (again pick and choose) is a good characterization of me.

Yogi is a Leo, which if you’ve read this blog for awhile you know that I was hoping for.  It’s a bit early to tell if this suits him, although he does have a good roar.

Day 19 – How do you (and your partner if applicable) feel about PDA?

Neither of us are very comfortable with a lot of PDA.  My definition of a lot of PDA involves kissing and borderline groping.  What we are comfortable with is hand holding and affectionate touching (arm around the waist, etc.) and we do our share of that.  I’m fairly confident in my assessment of a crowd and I don’t push the envelope when the situation doesn’t feel safe, but it is every rare that it doesn’t feel safe to me.

It is my experience that trouble comes in sexualized situations (dance clubs, concerts) when certain kind of (often drunk) men don’t realize at first that you are with a woman and when they realize that the woman you are with is not traditionally feminine (read: their definition of hot) and they have competition that seems unfair.  This is the only kind of situation I’ve been in in which I felt physically unsafe about overt physical affection and physical safety is really all I worry myself with.  I’m ok with making people nervous.  Since Yogi has come along I am pretty much never in these situations.  Maybe someday. 😉

Day 21.   What child(ren)’s names do you like that your partner hates and thus you could never use?

Although we didn’t have a girl, my favorite, favorite, favorite girl name is Stella which my wife does not like.  At all.  I imagine if Yogi had been a girl we would have had quite the showdown.  I LOVE the name and plan to go to bat for it again with number #2.  Cross your fingers. 😉

Hopefully more challenge prompts soon.

I Guess I’m Not the Challenge Type

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I love the idea of these challenges, but sticking with them seems to be more challenge than I’m up for.  I may go back and revisit some of the questions though bc I like them.  We’ll see.

Since my last substantive Yogi post about the adoption, it feels like everything has changed.  Again.  In the space of a weekend the little guy started crawling AND he decided that eating wasn’t such a bad idea after all.  These two things have brought about big changes in our daily routine.

The first is that I can’t take my eyes off the little rascal for one.minute.  He may be small, but he’s FAST.  As an example, I was cleaning the bathroom yesterday after setting him up with trucks and taxis to roll around the tile floor.  He was playing and I was scrubbing.  I left the room for one second to grab the mop I had left just outside the bathroom door and in that moment he headed straight for the toilet brush.  YUCK!!!  I managed to intercept him before he could pull the handle into his mouth which is a good thing since that is something I’m not sure I could recover from ;), but yikes!  A close call.  The first of many I’m sure.  At any rate, all of this motion is really raising the bar around here.  I thought I was busy before.  Man oh man.

The second is that in a matter of weeks (2?) we have gone from five bottles a day with the occasional attempt at solids, to five smaller bottles a day with an additional three solid meals.  This means that the bottle cleaning labor remains steady while the “what should I feed him?/how should I cook it?/when will I buy, prepare and clean it up?” labor has ramped up in a major way.  I’m sure I’ll get into a rhythm with this too, but I’m not there yet.  At the moment I am a cooking, cleaning, washing, diapering, baby entertaining machine.  This is what I do.  All I do.  Every day.  Ok, breathing deeply.  That’s better.

About this time last week Yogi started getting fussy in the way he got fussy when his bottom two (at this point only) teeth came in.  It’s a particular brand of fussy that we’re now calling “toothy”.  It has earned a name bc it has become such a familiar state, one that seems resistant to any intervention we can think of.  This recent toothiness results from the emergence of two (they seem to come in pairs) on the top.  These teeth are taunting all of us.  They will.not just break the f*&k through.  They are taking their time and in the doing, they are torturing us.  Puny, whiny days and wake-up screaming nights.  I officially hate these teeth.

A crawling, eating, teething baby is nothing to complain about of course.  It is a blessedly normal development.  Unfortunately the timing is off.  Our easy peasy, I don’t even require you to cook baby decided to start behaving like an actual 10 month old right about the time we started talking seriously about #2.  Suddenly the “Yogi MUST have a sibling” energy is growing more cautious.  Are we really up for another one?  How will we make it work?  Where will the extra time and energy come from?

In the last few weeks I’ve grown envious of our straight friends who were relieved of the responsibility of making this choice by just accidentally getting pregnant.  Certainly this brings its own kind of pressures, but at least it’s out of your hands.  At the moment this is enviable.  Instead what we have are lots and lots of questions.

If you have more than one, how did you make the decision about #2?  If you’re pondering this yourself, please chime in and tell me we’ll figure this out somehow.