Monday, January 26, 2009

"The Fog Is Getting Thicker..."

and Alphagal is getting larger. I might actually be taller lying down than standing up.

Slightly less than 4 weeks to Due Date. This is familiar. I am so sick of looking like Pappy O'Daniel, and still I am all but in denial about the baby actually coming anytime soon. Do I have my hospital bag packed? Nope. Do I have the babyseat installed in the car? Nah. Fortunately, I can still count on SNG to get the nesting urge. The nursery is painted and decorated, the 0-3mo boy clothes are all washed and put away, and we have an action plan in place for e-baby when The Time Comes. In fact, we have plans A, B, and C.

I have reached a degree of hugitude where it's really hard to drive my car, sit at my desk at work, climb a flight of stairs, sleep, clip my own toenails, or do just about anything else that I'd otherwise take for granted.

I'm not really looking forward to the sleepless nights (and days) to follow when the baby does make an entrance. I worry about e-baby feeling neglected when she's no longer the only kid in the house. And I dread the work it's going to take to lose this baby weight. Nonetheless, I am dying to see what this little guy will look like, what his temperment will be, whether he'll be anything like his big sister, or whether they'll be polar opposites. It should all be a lot of fun, but it is going to get really hectic around here for awhile.

Recent and curious e-baby news...
She correctly identified a glockenspiel by its sound today from her Baby Einstein DVD. That was just... weird. I won't be laughing about those baby music classes at the daycare anymore.
Last weekend, Dianaverse was in the car and asked e-baby what was in her cup-holder. E-baby said it was milk. Diana asked what kind of milk. E-baby told her it was a liquid. Heh. Smart-alec.
I wouldn't want anyone to think it's all roses and bunnies around here, so here's a poopy one. E-baby is a little bit obsessed with seeing what she's "done" in the toilet, especially if it's a #2. This evening, after a particularly difficult effort, she looked inside and whispered, in apparent awe, "it's soooo beautiful." I almost had an aneurysm trying not to laugh.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Don't eat yellow snow!

It hasn't snowed with any appreciable accumulation in 3 or 4 years. We've had little dustings and once had about a half-inch when e-baby was 1-year old, but she has owned a snowsuit since she was born. Um, well, we didn't buy one this year.

When we went to bed last night we knew it would snow. There was a winter weather warning in effect, and the only unknown was how much snow would ultimately accumulate. At 6:45 this morning, the yeard was a winter wonderland with about 2 or 3 inches already accumulated, and the weather forecast was that it would continue to snow all day today. Deciding to sleep in a little, I called the operations hotline at work and the recording told me it was work as usual. Hmmm. Odd. Well, they only promise to update the hotline by 7am, so I waited until 7:02 and called again. Operations as usual. What?! Since when does anyone around here, especially the most family-friendly company in the area, have normal operations on a snow day? All the schools are closed. Most businesses are closed. Why weren't we?

Grumble-grumble-- I showered and dressed and by the time I made it out of the bathroom I could hear e-baby up on the balcony hollering "MOMMY IT'S SNOOOWIING! IT'S A REAL SNOW DAY!" so I bundled her up as quickly as possible and we went into the front yard. She squealed and laughed and ate snow and once her fingers got painfully cold, she instantly turned to misery, cried, went inside, and went back to bed.

I checked my email and got a message saying that the operations hotline was experiencing technical difficulties. We ARE closed today after all!! Woot!

Ten minutes later, e-baby was back yelling "SNOW DAY SNOW DAY I WANT TO GO OUTSIDE!" I insisted taht she eat some food first, bundled her up again, and we played in the yard some more. Same story-- a few minutes of squealing with joy and a sudden turn to crying and misery once her hands got too cold. Back to bed for another half-hour. I wish I had some waterproof gloves for her. All she has are those cheap knitted gloves, and they get wet pretty quickly.

I am guessing the whole day will be like this, but it's OK. I am kind of the same way myself. It's all good until some vital part gets wet. Right now e-baby and SNG are snuggled under a blanket on the couch watching the inauguration and Bob the Builder with picture-in-picture.

Other updates: we had a wonderful time at the prom, and yes, I did buy some tights to wear with closed-toed shoes. Thank PIC for finding them and thanks mom for the fashion advice-- a black dress, black tights, and black shoes with a burgundy sash for an empire waist effect was really cute. Or, as cute as you can be when you're double normal size, glomming down free buffet goodies with all your favorite drunken colleagues.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Prom 2009

DANG it is COLD! Even with my built-in midsection space heater I was freezing by the time I'd completed the 10-yard walk from my car to the door of e-baby's daycare this morning. But the weather had to be this way because tomorrow night is the annual winter party (a.k.a. The Prom) that my compnay puts on every January. Several thousand of my closest colleagues and their significant others descend upon a large convention center to enjoy four ballrooms with bands (disco, rock & roll covers, jazz, and Sinatra covers), martini bars, food food and more food, and a casino. There's usually a mardi gras calibur elbow-to-elbow crowd from the front door to the back ballroom and everywhere in between, but surprisingly, the lines to the bathrooms are never too bad.

And it is always FREEZING cold the night of the prom. It's as though someone custom orders sub-freezing weather just in time for the party. Evening gowns are just not warm. Ever. This year is worse because all my maternity dresses are knee-length and sleeveless. Not really evening gowns, more like "little black dresses," but I'll be darned if I'm going to spend money on something fancier when I've only got 5 weeks left to be pregnant, ever, for the rest of my life. And no other proms to attend.

I am heartened by the fact that, unlike my first pregnancy, I've had little or no edema and so I won't have to wear extra supportive hiking boots with my little black dress. I can actually wear something silver and strappy and cute. But that also mean open-toed, and I just will. not. wear. pantyhose with open toed shoes. It's a personal quirk of mine. That knee-length dress will be really, really cold. Maybe I can get away with some wooly leg-warmers for the commute from the car to the door of the convention center. Or long johns, like we used to wear under our school uniforms. Ugh. Never mind, I'll just have to be cold.

On an unrelated note, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Partner in Crime! And HAPPY BIRTHDAY to H in Austin, too!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Six Weeks Left and a Nugget of Experience (three, really)

As of tomorrow, it'll be 6 weeks to Jambuca's due date. I'm not sure which end of this tunnel (really, seriously, no pun intended) I'd prefer right now. With a second child, I know exactly The Kind Of Thing I'm getting myself in for, and the first year (OK, 18 months if I'm honest) is really hard. Not that it is without its joy and rewards-- but there's no question it is a challenge, particularly for someone who has always been better with teenagers than with babies. I find it funny that of all the challenges I've ever taken on in life, the only one I've had notable trouble rising to was caring for a baby. I still feel grossly unequal to the job some of the time. Give me singular value decomposition over bedtime problems any day.

The saving grace, though, is that this time around I won't be traveling 3-6 days a month for work, either pumping milk and figuring out how to sneak it home past the TSA or toting a baby with me (and my mom, and my pump for during the business day, and not sleeping much at night). I figure my travel schedule will pick back up once Jambuca's a year or 2 old, but for awhile I get a break. So things might be a lot less hectic. One can hope.

In e-babyland, potty training has been quite successful. She's still having a little trouble with knowing she has to poop, but that's improved over the past week. Last weekend, however, I made the mistake of telling SNG how she hadn't had any out-in-public accidents at all-- tempting the heck out of fate. Sunday, we went to the mall, ostensibly to visit the Hello Kitty store (actually just to get out of the house for awhile). After finding a choice toy in the half-off sale bin, we wandered around the mall. E-baby matter-of-factly announced to the whole world that she had "just had an accident! I made a BIIIIG POOP!" We made a beeline for a department store that I knew had a bathroom on that floor. As we looped around the perfumes and past the suits, she repeated loudly that "that poop is tickling my bottom! My bottom is tickly from that poop!! Heehee!" We finally made it to the ladies' room, and wouldn't you know, there was a line. We waited. I looked down and right next to e-baby's shoe, on the floor, was one dry little poop-nugget, roughly the size of a Barbie doll's head. It had apaprently rolled out of e's pants-leg. I pulled a plastic trash baggie from my bag and scooped it up under the horrified gaze of the lady waiting ahead of me in line. I got e-baby all cleaned up and changed, and when we walked out, SNG stared pointedly at a spot on the floor just near the bathroom door, by a display of menswear: another poop nugget. I was sneakier this time, and got a bunch of paper towel from the ladies' room to scoop it and throw it in the trash. We made our way to the store's exit in total silence, and as we passed cologne, SNG noticed another stepped-on nugget right on the tile floor there. I was out of trash bags, out of paper towels, and out of my mind. I lowered my head and made for the door as fast as my legs would take me and nearly burst into tears as we headed for home.

Looking back, it was really hilarious. I wish I'd just had the ovaries to go back to the ladies' room at the other side of the store, get more paper towels, and just get on the floor and clean up the mess from the last poop. But something about the horrified gaze of the lady in the bathroom combined with the high-traffic zone of the cologne section, and maybe hormones or something, I had no courage left in me whatsoever. Yes, I'm a total wuss. Next time, though, I'll be more prepared-- I carry more than one trash bag with me now. And maybe I can make a game of it for e-baby-- like an Easter egg hunt! Only icky! I keep telling myself that I will not let people's judgemental looks stop me from doing the right thing.

One can hope.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

It's a Potty, it's a Potty-Potty, It's a Potty-Potty Weekend!

Since I am sure everyone's dying to read about peepee and poopoo, I've been trying to get in front of the computer long enough to write something for several days, but have not been able to until now (and even now, SNG is saying "put on a coat and come out here and bring mittens for e-baby because I need to look at the wires under the house and someone needs to throw the ball for DOTi." So this minute is technically stolen.).

After long consideration, I wouldn't attribute difficulties we've been having to my child being just plain stubborn. That's really not an accurate characterization of her. She definintely has her own mind, and wants things done her way, but she is also surprisingly rational, so usually she'll respond to reason. No, I think any trouble we've had has been related to two things about e-baby. 1- she is a kid who HATES stopping what she's doing to do something different. No matter what she's doing right now, it is, in her mind, the ONLY thing she wants to do. Nothing else can compete (except, as I've mentioned, books-- usually). 2- she is feeling a new sense of power and control with the big-girl underwear, and likes the fact that she can hold it for a long time in spite of my constantly asking "do you need to go potty?". She'll tell me "No, I just hold it a little longer" and then, eventually, she gets a panicky look and says "I need go peepee RIGHT NOW!" and runs to the bathroom.

We haven't had any pee accidents since Monday, and even then there was only one. She takes her naps in underwear and does fine. I have her wear a diaper at night, because I am the laziest mommy on earth and don't want to set a peepee alarm at 2am and I'm not sure she can manage 8-10 hours of bladder control. Poop is another story altogether, but I'll get to that. Yesterday evening we went to a neighbor's house for an early New Year's eve party, and e-baby used their potty twice (both times against her initial wishes, but she was clearly in discomfort trying to hold it so she could play with the other kids). She is always very proud of herself when she does pee on the pot, even when it means she's had to stop something fun.

But the poop. This paragraph is nasty, so if you're of a delicate sensibility, please skip to the next one right now. She had held her poop for 2 days-- making lots of underleg-music ("It's OK, mommy- I just pooted. It's not a poop. I don't need go poop right now" Oh yeah I believe THAT. Sure. Have I mentioned that my kid can lie like a bearskin rug on a Palin bedroom floor?)-- when she couldn't help herself and pooped a big blob of lead bearings in her underwear at the party. I decided to put my formal education to work, however, and told her that we'd put it into the toilet, so she could see, and then she could sit on the potty to try and poop more on top to make a poop tower (I swear, the thing went "Clink!" when it hit porcelain. I TOLD you this was nasty, it's your own fault for reading it). She was interested in that opportunity, and gave it the old school try. No more poop, but it seemed to mark a turning point.

Today she has been surprisingly interested in going pee, and she even went pee at a public restroom (GASP! ARG!) when she is ordinarily terrified of public restrooms with their noisy, automatic-sensor toilet flushers. I was about as icked out as I could be because, yes, kids ALWAYS grasp the sides of the toilet seat ring. ACK! YUCK! No amount of hand washing sets my mind at ease. Me and Howard Hughes just need our graves side-by-side. Then, when we got home, she pooped in the toilet. For real. On purpose.

So, just when it seemed like she'd never get it, everything just fell into place.

I am sure there will be plenty of setbacks, but we appear to be on the downhill side of the underwear expedition amd for that I'm so glad. Next week it'll be the daycare's problem for 8 hours a day. They are way better at this than I am anyhow.

Now, do you need to go to the potty? Are you sure?