Archive for the ‘moments’ Category

out shopping

It seems that when the baby is well enough to leave the house but too sick to mingle with other children, we take tours of the local shopping centers. We’ve been having a blast window shopping and eating from cheap food stands and sandwich shops. She either mellows out in the stroller or goes wild exploring the plazas, running around and checking out the plants and windows and dogs that people walk at the plaza – and of course, trying to open doors that no customer is supposed to open.

We’ve been going to the open air shopping areas since I really don’t relish going to the mall and I figure that outside air is good for us. On Sunday, we went to Borders, C&B, and the Container Store and the Container Store was by far the baby’s favorite stop. She loved the huge elevators with the glass walls, the large window panels that go floor to ceiling on the second floor, and the aisle of gift wrap rolls. We even found a little kid’s table with a kid chair that fit her and she played with the three small lego blocks left there and ran into a customer with a large dog which she tried to pet. It took a lot of gentle persuasion to get her to get out of the elevators since she wanted to ride up and down – which we did a few times – and there was much sadness and tears when I decided it was finally time to leave. Sadly, the morning excursion exhausted her enough that she took a catnap on the ride home and decided that she needed a longer nap. /sigh

Today, I took her to a different outside shopping area to get her hair cut. She liked the place, particularly since it had movies playing on several screens, and the dancing penguins of Happy Feet captivated her. Unfortunately, when she sat in the barber chair, the nearest screen was showing a fight sequence between the animals in Ice Age and that frightened her and made her cry. She barely noticed that her hair was getting cut although she looked in the mirror to see what was happening. In the end, it was an expensive cut so I think next time I’ll try trimming her hair myself. After that, we ate outside after picking up sandwiches at a deli there and made a quick stop at Trader Joe’s. And once again, she fell asleep on the car ride home and failed to nap in her crib. /sigh

I must learn to either let her sleep in the car or not tire her out so much during her excursions….

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taste good

The baby drank shampoo today. I was cooking and it was a little too quiet and then I thought I heard a weird slurping noise. I found the baby sitting in her bathtub in the bathroom with her back to the door. Upon closer inspection, she had a large shampoo bottle in her lap and was pumping the shampoo out. Shampoo was pooled around her legs and covered her clothes, mouth, and chin.

I snatched the shampoo bottle away, crying “Baby, you’re not supposed to drink that!” and I could almost swear that she exclaimed “taste good!”

I called Poison Control and they said other than making her tummy upset that she should be fine.

Very hard to feel like a competent parent after having to call Poison Control.

Today was also notable because it was the first day that I took her back to the gym’s daycare. The last time she was there was a few months ago and it was disastrous. She wailed, hit, batted proffered objects out of the staff’s hands, and she desperately clung to me, frantic at the thought that I might leave her. With such a momentous start, I didn’t bring her back – until now. As a new mom, I had been ignorant that separation anxiety starts around 9 months…..

This time was very different. When I opened the little swiss door to the play area, the baby walked right in and ran to the ride on toys. The staff – who remember her well – shooed me away. I had actually planned on spending an hour with the baby in the play area to get her accustomed to the space and staff, so I hung out in the lobby in case they needed me. After 20 minutes, she noticed that I was gone and started crying, so they called me back. Once I was there, the baby was happy to see me but didn’t need me there to play with her. I think she just wanted to make sure that I was close by. I’m helpful that it’ll get to the point where I can leave her for an hour.

Also, the baby’s vocabulary is rapidly increasing. Here’s a list of the words I’m fairly certain she  say: hi, okay, dada, mama, blue, cracker, duck, vacuum, telephone, good, wait, yeah, no.

A  day ago, I was folding laundry and asked her, “Baby, what’s this?” as she walked by.

“It’s a shirt.”

Shocked. A big pause. I was sure I had imagined it so I held up a different shirt and asked a second time.

“It’s a shirt.”

I folded some more clothes and then held up a dress. “What’s this?”

Silence. Not sure if she knew it was a shirt or if she was just bored with the question. Perhaps both.

She’s babbling a lot. Gibberish to me but she says the babble very deliberately, purposefully, expressively. It’s like she’s speaking a language I don’t know. A few days ago, she was cracking herself up on her own story and jokes. Yesterday, I could almost swear that she was making fun of my clothes in baby gibberish. Sometimes, I think I hear English wrapped up in the baby talk because I’ve thought I heard her say “I didn’t mean to argue that” once and some other phrases that she couldn’t possibly have said. M thinks that I must have imagined her say “taste good” today. I’ve also thought I heard her say “I know that” when I told her I loved her before leaving her in her crib for a nap.

Ah, mommy brain. I’m not sure what’s real or imagined as far as the baby is concerned.

overheard at my house

No. You are not old enough for Wolverine yet. Here. You are the right age for The Economist.

said by my husband to our 15 month old daughter.

a quick lunch but with minor gaps in service

I took the baby on a late morning walk today with the thought of getting a snack at the local Starbucks and maybe – if the baby was happy in her carrier – to get milk at the grocery store, but the closer we got to Starbucks, the less appealing the idea of coffee became. So, I walked a little further to the Chinese plaza to get dim sum, rationalizing that the baby had some snacks and that I could quickly pick something to eat off the cart, but I have to admit that I was thinking with my belly.

We arrive at the restaurant which is nearly empty, and I don’t think about it until after lunch is over, but no one asks me, even though I have a 20 lb baby strapped to my chest and there are busboys and wait staff standing idly by, if I need a high chair – in fact, no one pays any attention to me at all – so I get it myself. I grab the chair on the top of the stack in the back hallway only to find out, once the baby in is the chair, that it has no seat restraints. Everyone’s wandered off at this point except for a single, wandering dim sum cart, and the other high chairs are too far for me to leave the baby at the table. Baby is out of the carrier, sitting down, happily nibbling on crackers. We use the high chair we have.

We make it through lunch in a rather cheerful mood and baby behaves like a little lady, focusing on getting the food into her mouth although she does drop a little rice. None of the dim sum servers seem to want to pause at our table even though they all have to walk by it, but I get shu mai and the baby likes her rice and we have a nice time.

Then the restaurant gets busier and the baby gets excited. She scrambles out of her high chair, standing on the seat base, so she can hop out and join two grade school boys a few tables away. I grab her and keep her on my lap because there are carts passing by so she starts to whine and cry a little. The table next to us briefly notes the source of the cry and moves on with their meal, but I don’t want the baby to escalate. I can’t let her go because the cart traffic is busy at that moment and I can’t leave the table because I don’t have the bill and I need to collect my belongings. I flag down a steward for the bill.

The steward brings the  bill and thankfully a to-go box but leaves before I can ask for help or offer the credit card held ready in my hand.

I have a crying, wriggling baby in my arms, dim sum carts moving around the table, a to-go box to be filled, and my baby carrier and phone to pick up as well as the bill to pay. I have the credit card in my hand still. What happens next? During that moment, three carts come to a stand still by my table with their servers standing idly because of a bottleneck at one of the other tables.  This means three carts surrounding the table and three servers shaking their heads at the rice which baby dropped on the floor. Another wait staff member comes to clear off my table, shake her head at the floor, and apparently stare at me. The to-go box lies empty next to a plate piled high with fried rice. No one is willing to help slide the rice off the plate into the empty to-go box, take the credit card, or even flag the steward to come back for the card so I can pay.

It’s only a fleeting moment but a familiar one in which I need an extra hand or extra eyes, and I note the wait staff want me gone but that they don’t want to help. I pay the bill with cash, put the baby down to sweep the fried rice into the to go box, quickly gather my belongings, grab a wrapper from baby’s crackers that fell to the floor, and scoop the baby – now very happy again and eager to run around the tables – into my arms. I strap her into the carrier and we’re on our way – but before we’ve even left the table, one of the servers who had been watching me opens the bill to check the money and count the tip.

Usually, I feel a little guilty when the baby leaves any mess on the floor and this is reflected in a bigger tip. I also feel guilty on those unlucky occasions when I don’t have enough cash to leave a decent tip.

Tip was only a dollar. No guilt today.

knock knock knock

Last week, the baby grabbed her wheelie bug and zoomed down the hallway and rammed it into the bedroom door. She called out to me in her little baby way, stretching out her little arm and holding her hand out for me to take so that I would know she wanted me. I said, “You got to knock on the door. Go knock, knock, knock.”

The baby lifted her hand and knocked three times on the door, so I walked over and opened the door for her.

Someone understands more than I give her credit for.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Today was a low key Valentine’s Day because my husband is getting ready for a trip and I have a cold – or really bad allergies, I have yet to determine which – but the day started off well.

My husband surprised me with balloons! A huge cupcake balloon for me and a smaller pink balloon for the baby.

And when the baby woke up, I laid her down on the changing table to zip her out of her sleep sack and said, “Happy Valentine’s Day!”

The baby smiled and waved.

“Happy Valentine’s Day!”

A bigger smile and another wave. And an even bigger smile when she saw the balloons my husband brought home.

We also finished off the day with Baskin Robbins and my husband putting the baby to bed and making dinner.

A nice day.

a good day although not without a few bumps

We started the day running late to the baby gym, but the baby had a lot of fun once there. She waved at many of the other babies and parents, climbed through tunnels, went down the slide, held on to ladders, and rammed the pushcart back and forth into the wall and a pile of gym mats.

Afterward, we met Sprat and her baby at Panera. I carried the baby in and when I was paying, I had nowhere to put her except on the counter. When I took my credit card out, she grabbed it and then held it out to the cashier. She was also very good during coffee and sat in a high chair, kicking her feet back and forth and smiling. She kicked off one shoe and sock and waved at other customers, especially the ones who wouldn’t look at her.

Then more play at home, a late 2 hour nap for both of us, and the park! I met with another mom to discuss the birthday party for the playgroup that we are putting together. m crawled, cruised, and walked around the tot lot, went on the swing where one of the mom’s sons decided to gently push her, and she also crawled up the stairs to the slide and slid down the slide. Unfortunately, she likes to slide head first so I’m trying to teach her to go feet first. She was fine most of the time but the last time she slid down, she went too fast and bumped her chin. A few tears, but she quickly stopped.

She also had another unfortunate bump at home when she launched herself on a new ball which M bought for her last night. She landed square on her stomach, rolled, and then slid off and into the window. She cried and cried until I got an ice pack and put it on her head and then she would snatch it away and throw it to the floor. Since she didn’t mind my touching her head, I don’t think she was hurt too badly, but I’ve taken the ball away for now.

After dinner, she cruised around the house for a bit and played with my phone. At bath time, she expected me to entertain her and gave me her bath toys which I made sing and dance along the bath tub rim. She sat back in her tub and giggled.