Thursday, December 24, 2009

Oh, Wait, That Was an Inadvertent Lie

CORRECTION: There are a couple major unfinished projects yet to deal with. I have about, oh, a hundred or so holiday cards that haven't made it to the mail yet because I still haven't finished addressing 'em. Yeah, but I figure if they make it in the mail before this year's end, that's WAY better than last year: We never sent any last year. Annnd, well, so there's the cards thing, and well --this one makes me feel bad, but I know I gotta cut myself a break or I'll melt into a whiny puddle-- I failed to finish our presents for the grandparents and siblings. See, due to a restricted budget this year, we'd opted to take advantage of the cuteness we have on hand and to make Christmas gifts for our friends and family. Excellent idea, right? No really, it IS an excellent idea, but like I said, I'm operating a week behind schedule.

SOME BACKGROUND INFO: The angel boy-O used to 'collect' pine cones galore, but his collection had to been restricted to a very tall, very large glass canister-like jar kept at the bottom of our stairs. Mind you, although restricted in size, what he'd collected could have easily filled a couple paper grocery sacks, and that's a fact... Well, he has a rock collection too, which is also restricted in terms of its size, also stored in large, lidded glass jar. Over this past summer, he wanted to add more rocks to his already full jar, and I'd told him he'd have to pick and choose which ones he wanted to keep in order to make room for the new ones. [SIDE NOTE: If this 'pick-n-choose-which-can-stay-and-which-will-go' approach sounds mean, please believe me: If we didn't restrict his collections somehow, they would take over every nook n' cranny of our home! The boy would keep every rock and every bottle cap he sees!] So, rather than have to go through his rocks at all, he decided to sacrifice his entire pine cone collection, a collection I'd grown fond of, I gotta say. So yeah, he bagged up all his pine cones and headed for the trash, and then, after he'd gone to bed that night, I removed them from the garbage before the trash would be set out for garbage day -he never knew this, by the way.

So anyhow, I was trying to figure out how we could make something meaningful to give to our friends and family, and I wanted it to represent not just our baby girlie, but our angel boy-O as well despite his absence from our home. And I could not think of anything, at least not until our baby sweet potato girlie was sent home from preschool one day with a baby-hand-painted pine cone Christmas ornament, including a photo of her attached to it, taken when she was in the midst of her paint-covered creative efforts. And voila! I instantly knew what we'd do for everyone! Baby-painted pine cone ornaments, and soooo, our baby girlie has been helping mommie paint her big brother's discarded pine cones over the last couple weeks now, which we will give as lovely lil' holiday ornaments! Brilliant, yes!? --except she can only manage painting 5 pine cones at any one time, and we've learned the most it can happen is once a day, only every other day at most. We've had FOUR "painting of zee pine cones" sessions so far (more like three n' a half), and the last session, she was like, "What? More of these pokey things? Again? Are you kidding me?" and she didn't last more than 5 minutes.

Yeah, so it's taking a while....

The Eve of Christmas

Wow. So we've determined our household has been operating about a week behind the calendar. Yup, a solid week behind schedule; it should be Christmas a week from now, not tomorrow!?! Don't get me wrong, it's not that we have a ton of stuff left to cross off our to-do lists. We're actually in okay shape compared to previous years come the holiday time; the house is all decorated and all clean; mopped and vacuumed, dusted, etc., and the laundry all caught up and put away. Every holiday candle holder in he house is loaded n' ready to burn a candle, and we'd located the 20-odd Christmas albums we own several weeks ago, so there's been a steady rotation going for the last couple weeks. All the presents are wrapped and under the tree --something that's so not our norm by Christmas Eve night. And all the shopping that could be done is done, including our grocery shopping, but man, it can't be Christmas already!?! I haven't done any baking yet, but that's because I'm only taking stuff to Utah, and that's not until next week. Otherwise, we don't need the sweets this year, so yeah, no bakin' or candy makin' this week. Even still, we're just not ready. I don't know how to explain it, but, we're just not ready. [A related 'corrective' post included HERE]

My honey-man normally creates a grand French Canadian inspired meal for Christmas that has him in the kitchen for a day, cooking away, but this year's holiday really snuck up on him -or us rather- real super fast. I knew yesterday morning when we got up that he had NO IDEA what the following day was, and when I told him, he looked like he'd been struck dumb, utterly confounded. This morning we decided to hold off on the Montreal feasting tradition and wait until the angel boy-O joins us on Sunday the 27th.

I think this year is just so new and different for us. For instance, this will be our first Christmas spent in Vegas, which isn't a shocking piece of trivia for my honey-man, but for me, well, I've lived here for TEN years now, and I've never spent Christmas here, nor in my own home, not ever! And of course, this will be our baby girlie's first Christmas, and that's very exciting, even though we know she won't ever remember a bit of it. It feels a bit odd though to celebrate the holiday season with our new darling babe now, but without our other darling babe included.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sugar Time for KiKi

The past two nights in a row, my sweet lil' Otis has tried to take a chunk outta my right wrist with his kitty teeth! Now, before this week, I could have counted on one hand how many times Otis has ever tried to bite me and only once ever had he broken the skin, which was more my fault than his, but I won't go into that - - point is, it has only ever happened when he's feeling incredibly SUPER neglected... It's his way of saying, "Hello! Love me now OR ELSE!"

See, the last two nights, I guess I was focusing more upon tapping my fingertips against the colorful glowing thing I often have set in my lap --a place he's believed to be rightfully his since he came to live with me 6 years ago-- than upon his fuzzy backside. And while in the years before now, he could totally, patiently handle sharing some lap-space with the glowing whirring thing, only occasionally perturbed by the finger clicking and the 'mouse pad' taps beneath his chin resting upon either wrist of mine, he now has to be doubly patient and it seems he can no longer handle it.

It began 18 months ago...
First it was 9 months of sharing lap-time with the glowing thing AND a "baby bump" that gradually, steadily grew, and then altogether took over my lap near the initial 9 months' end, and the baby bump even kicked at him repeatedly when he's tried to reclaim some lap-time. And now, for the last 9 months? Well, Oatie's lap-time has been severely cut, doled out between the glowing thing, and a now ever present, relatively new, and very noisy, wriggling, squirmy thing that actually moved in with us 9 months ago! Yes, sadly for Otis, the squirmy thing seems to be here to stay.

Like his first days sharing lap-space with the glowing thing, Otis has done very well, too, with the noisy, squirmy thing, but its obvious to us he longs for the days when he reigned king-supreme over my lap, when he collectively spent a couple hours in my lap each day, even if those hours were spread throughout a days' time, over breakfast and dinner and the evenings and bedtimes. He just doesn't get much concentrated lap-time anymore, and well, to make matters worse, the tapping on the glowing thing has reached an all time high, so he's noticed, with all my working from home.

And it was bad enough a couple months ago, but now that little noisemaker routinely chases after him on all its fours, squealing loadly at him, and it goes after his tail and pulls on it harder than ever. Oh, and he's had to endure countless naptime interruptions as well... blasted lil' noisy thing.

Anyhow, long story short (too late), Otis apparently needs to tank up on some sugar from his mommie, so tonight, after putting the wriggly thing to bed, I let Otis reclaim his lap-space for a good solid 2 hours, while the glowing thing sat on the coffee table playing through the last two episodes of "Glee" from online. And I swear he was purring for those 2 hours... and now he's content to sleep beside me while I work (and blog), my sweet lil' kitty-cat.

P.S. I nearly wrung his sweet little neck though last Monday night, when he'd bitten me. I was about to send a Christmas email to a number of friends and family (which never happened), and I just had to attach three professional jpeg images of our baby girlie sitting with Santa Claus, taken at Town Square (and that is another story in itself that I will not get into right now). Although I had sensed and known he was irritated with me and all my typing while he was trying so earnestly to get my attention for some cuddles, when Otis bit me, I was so surprised and stunned, I jumped up from the couch. Consequently, I dumped my laptop on the floor and the usb drive with the jpeg files busted off in two pieces. And of course, I hadn't attached the files yet, nor had I made any duplicate file copies. Yeah, dammit. The swearing that ensued thereafter was explosive. Humpht. My sweet blasted kitty!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

While Nom Nom Noming on zee Swiss Cheese

Otis has been sleeping in our dirty towels basket on top of the washer in the laundry room since eleven this morning, until just a moment ago, when he joined me, jumping up into my lap to my baby sweet potato's delight, as we're in the midst of her dinner time! Otis is just a foot away from her tiny grasp and she's deliriously happy about the close proximity. Otis is staring cooly at her while she squeaks and squeals, little arms waving and flapping, leaning as far forward as she can while sitting strapped in her high chair. And Otis knows she can't get him...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Why I Love Mah Honey-Man ~ Reason 47

Because he regularly makes me laugh so hard I cry and I nearly pee my pants!

Friday, December 11, 2009

No-Go to Big Lots

I'd never been to Big Lots before, but decided the other day to finally check 'em out on our way home. I picked up a couple minor things, but nothing really worth writing about, except, um, there's a reason these are selling at Big Lots:

SOME BACKGROUND INFO: Over the past month, I've had a general craving for all things Oreo... Mint Oreos, Peppermint Candy Cane Oreos... and these 'Strawberry Milkshake Oreos" were a part of the latest effort to satisfy my jones'n for Os... What a NO-go!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

No Fever, No Worries

Last night was pretty painless; we had no more swelling, no more crying, and zero fever past 10pm. She woke up only twice and went right back to sleep each time after nursing, and she actually slept in until 7:30am. She was an absolute angel at her peds appointment, smiling and flirty with everyone, and we wound up getting her 9 month wellness check taken care of while we were at it, since we were there close enough, just a couple weeks early. She weighs a titch shy of 20 lbs, measuring 27.5" tall --not much of a change since she was to the doc a month ago-- but her head circumference measures 47cm, still placed in the upper 95th percentile for her age = means she still has a mega big noggin, disproportionate to the rest of her lil' bod, as the rest of her measurements are still in the 50th percentile. Ha!

We also took care of her 2nd round of flu shots as well, including the H1N1 vaccine, plus a hemoglobin test-prick taken on her right big toe, which didn't elicit even a peep out of her. The two vaccine shots, one to each baby thigh, on the other hand, produced some intense but short-lived crying and some cute purple band aids, one for each baby thigh, and she was fascinated by those, and the one wrapped around her big toe too.

Throughout the day, she and I would play together quietly, and she was often content to play on her own, sitting at my feet while I tried to get some work done. She napped about every 3 hours for at least 30 minutes at a time. She actually went down around 3:30-ish for what I'd thought would be another 30 minute nap, but she didn't wake until after 8pm! After one diaper change, plus a round of eye drops and one feeding refuel later, she was back to sleep. So clearly, she's not quite herself yet, but she's much improved compared to how she was when I'd brought her home yesterday, yes, much better, thank goodness.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Back to S.Y.T.Y.C.D. for the Sake of My Nerves

So, I'm watching "So You Think You Can Dance" right now - - I missed the last 4 weeks of shows, um, cuz I don't really watch TV. But tonight, well, tonight I'm on alert, trying to remain cool, calm, and collected, and I need some 'veg-out-n-don't-think-about-it-too-much' time: My baby sweet potato girlie is sick, sick, sick, again, and this time, if she feels how she looks right now, oh my goodness, my poor baby is so sick.

As I was leaving work to go pick her up, all excited about carrying her out to the car due to her new carseat, her preschool called me to ask if I was on my way over, because she'd been taken to the infirmary. She'd woken up from a loooong nap --an hour and 15 minutes, which NEVER happens at daycare-- and they said her little face was puffy and her right eye was red and nearly swollen shut, and she was just crying, crying, crying, and with or without the puffiness and swollen eye, she's not known to cry much there.

When I arrived to her school, I went first to her group's room to collect her things and to sign out this and that, and I talked with some of the ladies who watch her to hear what they had to share about my baby girl's day. They all expressed their concern that she had had such a hard time, that she looked so sick, and that it had happened so quickly, and then? Then the real worry began to sink into my gut as I read the worry on their faces.

As I walked from one building to the other, I tried to keep my nerves and my heart in check and to not let my growing worry run out of control. As I entered the building where the infirmary is, I could immediately see my lil' sicky babe through its windows before I even had to ask where she was, and my baby girlie saw me as well, and holy cow, the crying hit a new high the moment she saw me through the glass!! The school's program director actually came out to talk to me and she met me just as I set my things down on a table outside the infirmary, but honestly, I have NO IDEA what she was saying to me, as I passed her by, eyes and ears for my baby only in that moment, and as I made it into the room where the head nurse was trying to hold her, my darling sweet pea, with her lil' right eye swollen 1/2 shut, smiled a pained and crooked smile, and the crying turned off like a switch had flipped as I reached for her, and she reached for me, and then my heart exploded.

The director and head nurse gave me the relevant details I'd need for our pediatrician, but foremost, I was preoccupied, alarmed to see how sick my wee one looked and to see her so exhausted.

Placing her inside my car and into her new carseat, after having carried her out of her school in my arms with her lil' wet, tear streaked cheekies brushing against my own as she whimpered and sighed, she barely kept her little eyes open, yet she realized something was new and different, and as she opened her peepers to see what was up. She recognized she was sitting in something she'd never seen before and she looked around, from side to side, and as her lil' wet and puffy fingertips reached out and gingerly touched the corduroy upholstery and the harness straps, she closed her swollen eyes, fingers still exploring her new backseat throne, and she leaned her little head into a side-impact cushion, opening her eyes again to look at those as well, then closing them again, whimpering some more as I began fastening her in.

Once we were home, she was too sleepy to keep her poor eyes open as she ate, and only half her usual dinner portions at that. A couple times she'd kinda squint at me, her left eye half-closed to match her right, and I realized she just had to go to bed and sooner than I'd originally thought. As I turned from her highchair to grab a bottle from the freezer to be thawed in our bottle warmer (thank you, Christina!), she began to cry a kind of slow-motion cry, too tired to cry, but with big fat tears rolling down her red, chubby cheeks, dripping off her trembling chinny-chopper. As I unbuckled and lifted her from her highchair, up into my arms, she closed her eyes again, and with her bottom lip out in a full pout, she buried her face into my neck, and patiently waited for her bottle to thaw, taking a couple peeks here and there to watch the steam rise.

We then headed upstairs for a modifying bath time. For a first, I simply laid her down in a warm bathtub filled very shallow water, rather than place her sitting up in her usual blow-up baby tubby which sets down inside the bathtub. With her head supported by a hand of mine behind her neck, she laid there in the warm water with her eyes closed, quietly humming, letting her little arms and legs float, all relaxed. And I was in awe with her.

I couldn't believe --and still can't-- how sick she looks. Her whole face appears to be puffy, her cheeks and chin are chapped, and her nose is running like a faucet, and we're certain she has a nasty eye infection. She hadn't had a fever earlier, but the last time we checked around 7pm, she had a low grade temp of 99.1. And so, as I'd said when I first began this rambling post, I'm on the alert tonight. I did talk with her pediatrician's office on our way home, and we do have an 8am appointment set for the morning. Needless to say, we'll be home from work tomorrow and she won't be able to return to daycare until she's been fever free and on antibiotics for 24 hrs' time. For now, let's just hope she doesn't get any worse tonight!

No More Infant Carrier Carseat

Our baby sweet potato is now 8 months old, well, as of 2 weeks ago, and she now weighs enough that it's proving a leg-brusing effort to haul her around in her infant carrier carseat, soooo, last night my honey-man installed our two Britax Boulevard carseats, one in each car so as to avoid daily reinstallation issues, swapping one carseat back and forth between the two cars every single day she has daycare. Anyhow, I can't express how delighted I am to be rid of the infant carrier - - and why am I so thrilled? Because from now on -well, at least until she learns how to walk- I get to carry her out to the car and in from the car every time we go-go somewheres, and I love to get my arms around my lil' bug whenever I can find the excuse to do so without mauling/smothering her [SIDE NOTE: She's a VERY independent baby and mommie (that's me) tends to cramp her style if mommie doesn't watch herself!]. And now I'm off to claim my lil' babe! I'm so ridiculously excited!

Monday, December 07, 2009

How Can it be December?

Where the heck does all the time go? AKKK!

To be continued...