Thursday, May 28, 2009

Like A Kick to the Chest

I just realized that I have been back at work for the same amount of time as I was out of work on maternity leave! Wha?! It feels like I'm still unpacking into my office. People are still asking "Are you back at work ALREADY?"

In the scheme of things, three and a half months really isn't a very long time, but it's a lifetime in baby years. When every day sees new developments, and every interaction seems significant, and multiply that by two kids, time goes on the log scale all of a sudden.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Nearly Perfect Day

This morning, SNG & I slept until 7:15, the kids slept until 8, and we cleaned up the house really well. Then we cleared out the pine straw from the last section of our garden and repotted the last of the seedlings. We also installed our new silly frog-playing-a-horn fountain.
At lunch, SNG took the truck to get 2 trellises and 17 bags of pretty pea-gravel, while I took the kids to Sonic (our Sonic won't let you keep the tray on your window. WTF?). E-baby loves their grilled cheese. I like having the children in a confined space where they can't hurt themselves or each other. Jambuca likes to be fed in the car. Everyone's happy.
After lunch, it rained like mad, so the kids & I watched SNG shovel pea gravel into the just-cleared section of the garden, now known as the zen garden. We put in all the plantings & the trellises, the weather cleared up, and the yard was a glorious spectacle of red, yellow, purple, orange, white, pink, and green. Later in the afternoon, our cul-de-sac hosted a big neighborhood street party, and e-baby 'sold' every single flower from our garden to the other neighborhood kids when she set up a florist shop behind the gardenia bush. I heard her charging anything from forty cents to 200 dollars. Our garden is just green now, but that's ok. What's the point of flowers if nobody's going to enjoy them? Jambuca was passed from neighbor to neighbor all evening until he was pooped from all the attention. I know I've said how much I love it here, but I'll say it again- I love our neighbors.
Both kids went to bed without any argument and now I will, too. Good night!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Learning about Laryngitis

I caught a cold last week and lost my voice (again!!), which was bad timing because I also had to teach all this week. Luckily, my co-instructor could cover for me when I couldn't go on for all the coughing. Oh, and extra bad timing because Thursday night I was scheduled to give the speech at the Teacher's Appreciation Dinner for e-baby and Jambuca's daycare.

So yesterday, desperate to get my pipes back, I did some Googling on laryngitis. From all the reputable websites I read, I learned that it's a really, really bad idea to whisper through laryngitis. You're better off either croaking (if you can) or writing things down. Or, presumably, signing, but if you're the only one in the room who knows a little ASL, it may as well be Mandarin. I was really surprised to read that whispering is as hard on the larynx as shouting. It doesn't feel that way to me. But I tried not whispering at all yesterday, and whaddaya know, I am starting to sound better today. Ordinarily, I'd have another day or 2 without a voice.

I croaked through the teachers' speech, everyone laughed at the right times and smiled at the right times, although I suspect that everyone really just wanted me to shut up so they could dig into their dinners. Still, it was fun.

I still have to teach all the next 2 weeks, so hopefully this voice thing will be completely healed by Monday. This weekend we're going to a birthday party, trying to get a visit with my aunt, uncle and cousins who are in town, and experimenting with pre-cooked frozen breakfast sandwiches. As in, making them from scratch, freezing them, and having quick, easy breakfasts all week. Has anyone ever tried to freeze cheese or scrambled eggs? Any advice before I ruin a bag of groceries?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

E-baby sings for all the Mommies.

Happy mother's day all you moms!

Thursday, May 7, 2009


One of the great fringe benefits to living in North Carolina is the fact that pretty much everything grows here, and in spite of what you may have heard about hog lagoons, we really do have a booming (non-livestock) agriculture business here in the north. Since we moved here in 2000, we've spent from May-October visiting the NC state farmer's market (it's freaking HUGE!) almost every weekend. It's where I get my strawberries and blueberries for jam-making, and the only place that has eggplant I'll actually eat (and 8 or 10 varieties of it). They have dozens of different kinds of everything. Corn picked within the hour, $5 for a big paper grocery bag full. Fresh baked pies, fresh goat's milk cheese. And then there's the peanut guy. He always has boiled peanuts and he always flirts and he has about 4 teeth and I love him.

But since e-baby was born, we've been to the farmer's market maybe 4 times. It means that the last 2 years' jam were made with non-local berries from the grocery store, and our veggies were waxy, shipped in from other states, and sometimes other countries. That won't do.

Fast-forward to last fall. Here in the woods, everyone knows everyone and one of the neighbors wanted to get a group of us in on a community supported agriculture (CSA) farm. With a CSA, you buy a share of a local farm and everyone takes their share of the produce for 6 months. If it's a good growing year, you have lots of goodies. If it's a crappy year, you don't get so much. It's still cheaper than what I spend on pproduce at the grocery store by a LONG stretch. Another neighbor wanted to learn about sustainable farming, so he took an internship at a local organic-growing farm, and so choosing the farm was a no-brainer. I still didn't know what I'll do with radishes or beets or arugula, but all the other stuff we'll get is going to be great.

Today was our first shipment. It's early days, so all we got was lettuce, greens of unknown origin, and strawberries. We also got arugula flowers-- the crop bolted in the recent hot weather, but the flowers are sweet and nutty. Perfect on a salad. I had lettuce wraps for dinner. The lettuce was as good as any tortilla I've ever had.

The coolest thing is that e-baby loved all of it. Normally she dislikes strawberries. But who can blame her-- they have to get here from Florida or California, so of course they taste like crap. But local, organic strawberries picked this morning? Oh yeah-- that rocks her world. So does red leaf lettuce dipped in ranch dressing.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Three Months Old

"My sister picks my outfits"

My tiny new baby is three months old today. He's 15lb 8oz. where does the time go? How did this happen?

A little over a week ago (at gestational age of 2 months) a bunch of things happened:
Jambuca quit his nonstop slow poop in favor of several days between poops (as many as 8 days) without any apparent pain, so I interpret it as his gut maturing (yeah, I know there's a joke hanging right there- like fish in a barrel).
He seems to be bothered less by what I eat. Maybe I'll venture a cup of coffee in another week?
He is awakened to play several times a day so he can't just sleep away the day between feedings, which leads to...
He sleeps all night. Hallelujah, can I get a witness! AAA-MEN!!!

We moved him to his own room Friday night and he sleeps even better there than in our room.

For a milestone of my own, we crossed some threshold where 2 kids is no longer 4x harder than 1 kid. Now it's more like 1.5x as hard. That came faster than I expected. I don't figure it'll always be that way.

I'll add a picture or two to this post later when I can get onto a real computer (this is coming from my phone-ouch, my thumbs!).