Monday, August 23, 2010

Sitting up

And right on schedule, we have...tripoding!

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Andrew will officially be six months old tomorrow, and last week, he started propping himself up in a sitting position. He can't sit like that for a really long time, though, or he starts listing over. But he's getting better at it each time, as he builds up his strength.

Remember William at about the same age? We used to prop him up with the Boppy so he could sit up and play with his toys.

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I got out the Boppy for Andrew a couple of days ago,m too. He actually does better without it, but you do have to sit right there next to him so he doesn't suddenly throw himself backward and bonk his head.

I bet he'll be sitting up all on his own before I know it. I swear, every time I turn around, he's grown a little bit or doing something new. He started blowing raspberries about a week or so ago, and he loves to do that to get attention. And he's really digging the baby food. Right now, we're on green beans, but in another day or so, I'm going to give him squash. If he's anything like William, the squash will be a Big Hit.

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Side note: we did not get any good family pictures at the beach this year, despite the matching outfits that I bought for the boys specifically for that purpose. Sob. But I did at least get one pretty cute snapshot of them at home in their little outfits. It's hard to set up a pose right now, but I bet it will be easier once Andrew is reliably able to sit up by himself. Check them out:

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Monday, August 16, 2010

What, me worry?

I don't know how we got onto the topic of worrying, but I found myself discussing how parents worry about their children with William this morning.

We were driving home from the dentist office, and he was chattering on about Harry Potter (as usual) and asking a billion questions that I refused to answer on the grounds that 1) he needs to read the books in order and find out for himself and 2) I refuse to spoil it for him. And somehow, I was telling him that parents always worry about their kids, even when they're grown up.

William was mystified by this. He wanted to know why. I told him that I couldn't really explain why, except that parents love their children and want them to be healthy, happy and safe, so they worry about them not achieving those things. William might be perfectly safe when he's at school, for example, but part of me still worries about him.

And I found myself uttering something I never really thought I'd say.

"You'll understand when you're a parent one day," I said.

Mom? Is that you?

Really. It was her voice coming out of my mouth. Or maybe it was my dad's voice. Either way, it was like aliens took over my body and began controlling my speech. That happens a lot these days, I've noticed. I open my mouth, and rather than saying something of my own, I parrot something that my mom used to say to me. Eerie how that happens.

In fact, the other day, I chuckled over a cartoon in the paper and had to call my mom to share. (The cartoon was Zits, in case any of you are fans.) The teenaged boy says, in disbelief to his mom, something like, "So you want me to text you every time I go somewhere, even if it makes me look like a dork?" And the mom says, happily, "Yep! Thanks!" I don't even have a teenager, and yet, I totally got it. I'll be that mom in about ten years. Mom texted me back to say, "Ah yes! You just wait!"

The funny thing is that I was totally prepared to worry about my young children--I just didn't really understand that it would keep going on forever and ever amen. All new parents worry. We worry about our babies being born healthy. We worry about whether the baby is still breathing when he's alone in his crib and hasn't cried in a long time. We worry when the baby hasn't had a messy diaper in what seems like too long (can there really be a too long?). We worry about our babies hitting all the milestones on time. So yes, I worry about Andrew. But I still worry about William. In fact, I might worry even more about him now than I used to. And now I know that I will continue to do so for as long as he lives. The specific things that I will worry about will undoubtedly change. But the big ones--health, happiness and safety--will remain constant.

In fact, I even worry about my own parents a lot more these days. It's ridiculous. I admonish them to call me when they're on the road and let me know when they get safely to their destination. I may, er, even have been known to call or text and badger them until I get a satisfactory response. And um, I may even pester my husband to do the same with his parents ("Did you call Diane and Aaron yet? Did they make it to their hotel yet? Is their car doing okay? Are they all right?").

The irony. Yes, yes.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Back to sleep

Lots of people claim that babies sleep better when they sleep on their tummies. I can't speak for all babies, but that was pretty much true for William. Once he was able to sleep on his stomach, he did. From then on, until he started sleeping in a big boy bed, his default sleep position was on his stomach. With his bottom in the air.

So awhile ago--I don't remember exactly when--Andrew started sleeping through the night. He's done it off and on for awhile, but then he started doing it fairly reliably a few weeks ago. Sure, we'd get one of those nights, here and there, when he'd need rebinking (read: re-insert the pacifier into mouth of squalling babe) a few times, but they were starting to decrease.

Then he started rolling over onto his tummy. Now his latest trick is to roll himself over onto his stomach, fall asleep, squirm around in his sleep, and then wake up on his stomach. He seems to have forgotten that he can roll back onto his back, so he thinks he's stuck. And oh, that makes him so mad! One night last week, I was jolted out of a sound sleep by the sound of frantic baby cries. I limped as fast as I could into Andrew's room, and there he was, on his stomach, sideways in the crib, with both leg hanging out between the slats. No wonder he was mad!

He's doing better again. He does seem to like sleeping on his stomach. Just not waking up on his stomach. So I'll be really glad when he remembers how to roll back onto his back without assistance again.

Monday, August 09, 2010

The Romanian Orphanage Crib Strikes Again

Remember when I said "so far, so good" about our beach trip?

Yes, well, that was before it stormed and stormed and stormed the rest of the day on Friday. So everyone had to stay inside, rather than get to run around out on the beach. And then we got caught in ridiculous traffic for nearly three hours in the mountains on the way home, which resulted in my throwing in the proverbial towel and convincing David to get us a hotel room in Knoxville for Saturday night.

Guess what showed up in our hotel room? That's right. Another Romanian orphanage crib*. This time, Andrew got the Romanian orphanage crib experience. And like his big brother, he was not so amused by it. Every time he rolled over, he got arms or legs tangled up in between the cold metal bars.

And then he woke up screaming--SCREAMING AT THE TOP OF HIS LUNGS LIKE HE'D BEEN SHOT--around 1 a.m., and I couldn't convince him to quiet down there for awhile for love or money. David was hyperventilating. Even William, who sleeps like the dead, woke up. The screaming echoed around and 'round those concrete walls in an impressive way, like the acoustics in a European cathedral. This was after we had sat in our minivan for hours upon hours all day AND stupidly taken the boys to eat hamburgers at Littons in Knoxville at 8:15 at night. It was, to put it mildly, perhaps not the most relaxing evening of our lives.

(*And of course, I took pictures of Andrew in the crib! You knew I would. Unfortunately, they're on my iPhone. So I'll have to post them later.)

From earlier in the week, when things were a little more sane:

William doing triangle pose at the beach:

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Me and Andrew at sunset:

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Dee Dee helping William try to boogie board:

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Andrew and his daddy:

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I'll post some more photos soon.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Beach babies

This is our last day at the beach, so I thought I'd take advantage of a temporary lull in the action to say hi to all my readers.


This was our first big family vacation as a family of four. So far, so good. We loaded down the minivan like we were going to be hiking up Mount Everest, in anticipation of just about anything that could possibly happen. It's amazing that David could still drive it, frankly. Nothing like travelling with small children and all their gear!

We've had mostly good weather. It stormed one morning, and then it rained briefly today, but that's about it. Andrew's only been out to the beach a couple of times, but I don't think he minds. William, on the other hand, has had a ball, playing on the beach. Even I have made it down to the beach a few times, with my gimpy leg. I was wishing that we hadn't rented an oceanfront beach house with the longest possible walk to the beach, but I've managed to do it. Darn stairs, though. The walkway goes up and down, up and down, up and down. Ugh.

Next year, I want to rent a house that has a shorter walk to the beach. Okay, yes, I hopefully will not have a broken ankle next summer, but I will have a one-year-old that I will have to schlep to the beach, along with a five-year-old and all the necessary gear. Man, I'm tired, just thinking about that.

I'll post pictures soon. Wish us luck on the journey home tomorrow...we're going to need it...