Sunday, August 17, 2008

Home from vacation!

We had a wonderful 2-week vacation in New Hampshire.  Some of the highlights were:  Fort Foster in Kittery point (we went on a downcast day & had the place to ourselves, including a gorgeous secluded beach), shopping at the Hanna Andersson outlet (where I found a pair of giraffe-print clog boots for moi for $24!!!), antique shops, lobster (twice!), York's Animal Kingdom, lots of fun at the beach of course, a new baby cousin (Abigail Dean arrived 8/4/8 on her Mom's cool is that?!  She is sweet, she looks like a chubby little bear cub), and last, but not least, Orange  & Ocean won "Judge's favorite" for the costume parade contest with our "Purple Urchin" costume that we made by dissecting some purple pool noodles & then hot-gluing them to a leotard & then wrapping with a purple garland.  I thought it came out really good, I was surprised that the glue worked so well, it's like cement (yay for glue guns!).  We tried spiking her hair with egg whites but it didn't really work.  My sister made the signs which came out great!  Ocean was the "Beach Plum" (my Mom & sister made her costume, which was very cute as well).  Eva & Amelia were very cute bumble bees.  They didn't win anything, but they should have!  Next year! 
The "Beach Plum" is the name of a popular ice cream shop on Rt. 1 & the "Purple Urchin" is the name of a seafood restaurant conveniently located directly across from the judging pavilion.   We were a big hit.  The owner came over, offered us lunch (which we declined because we had to get back for Orange's party), and took pictures of the staff with Orange.
We won 2 restaurant certificates (she treated us to lobster one night & got her own for the very first time!) & one for the grocery store, and a "grab bag" of little toys.  Plus she'll get her picture in the newspaper!  I don't really have any pictures yet off our camera but here are some my aunt took (that's her with Ocean).

Friday, August 1, 2008

Baby food stuff: note to self

We plan on doing baby-led weaning, so we're going to skip the processed cereal crap & purees and go straight to "real" foods that she can pick up & eat herself.  This really makes sense to me as who would want flavorless mush repeatedly shoveled into their mouth?  By letting them decide what & how much to eat or whether they even want to at all  (it may just be an art project the first few times and that's fine!), you can foster healthy attitudes about food & eating right from the get-go.  There is definately mess involves but that is part of the process as baby explores the different tastes & textures.  Anyways, I'm not afraid of a little mess.   Actually, I'm usually the one who encourages mess.  

Some ideas for first foods:
sweet potato
steamed broccoli
and some good sources of iron (since I'm skipping the iron-fortified cereal) include pumpkin, buffalo, beef, and egg yolks.

I'll add to this list as I think of more ideas.  I also have the Super Baby Food book by Ruth Yaron that I read when Orange was a babe.  I should dust that off & flip through it, I know she had a lot of great insight.  I'd also like to read Child of Mine by Ellyn Satter.  Oh, and I'd like to get one of those mesh feeders.
Ocean is showing some signs of readiness.  She can sit unassisted for a few minutes before toppling, "chews" & drools when she watches us eat (it's really cute!), and I think  she's outgrown the tongue reflex.  I offered her a bite of banana a couple of times she sucked on a stalk of broccoli once and a bean from our garden.  She doesn't have any teeth yet (although she seems to be working on it), so I'd like to wait a bit longer before "officially" offering solids.  I've read that the first teeth coming through is associated w/ the production of more digestive enzymes and thus an indication of readiness.  Makes sense.  Also, I want to breast feed as long as possible, of course.  Maybe not the 4.5 years that Orange had, but at least 2 years or longer. 

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Look at this eggplant!  Isn't it gorgeous?  Wish I could take credit for it, but Connie picked it up at the farmer's market.  Let's hope it tastes as good as it looks.

We went to HELL, uh, I mean the Children's Museum yesterday.   Fun for the kids, not so fun for the mom.  It was sooo hot & over-crowded & so many tantrum-ing brats (not mine)!  And it's a  long T ride there, which was packed (and hot & smelly as the T usually is). Orange had a lot of fun, though.  She especially likes the rock climbing wall, which she did over &  over (and over!).  And the recycle shop, where she filled a bag & I picked up 23 of these little guys.  They are sad on one side and happy on the reverse.  I have no idea what I'll do with them, but they were calling out to me with their sad (and happy!) little heart-shaped faces.
And no complaints on the Ocean front, she seemed very content in the Beco all day.  And they have a designated "Nursing Room" there complete with dim lighting, a couch, and a bunch of pillows which provides the perfect excuse to escape from all the museum mayhem.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

What babe? The babe with the power...

Don't you think Ocean sort of looks like Toby?  And I, like Sarah, sometimes wish the goblins would come and take her away! And if only Cory looked that good in tights...!
Just kidding. 
kind of.

2 syllables away from a Haiku

Today was a rainy day, so after Orange had a "power snack" of hummus, sprouts, carrots, cherry tomatoes, and grapes (a whole plate of what we deem "power foods"), I let her watch The Dark Crystal, circa 1982.  Her review?  "It has scary parts, sad parts like when his master dies, good parts, and happy parts.  And movies like that are good, good, good!"  
She was even inspired to write the above poem.  Here, let me decipher for you:  
"This is one of my poems, Run through the sun, to get the shining crystal, shining bright, 
Love Orange"
We then braved the rain & walked to the library.  They had a $1.00 bag sale so we picked up a few, including Roald Dahl's The Fantastic Mr. Fox, a Lyle Crocodile book, and an old Dr. Who book.  We could have fit a lot more in our bag, but I was already carrying 15-some-odd pounds of baby and up-teen pounds of library books.    
The librarian gave me a book to read for the book club, The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters by Gordon Dahlquist.  It's a nice thick book & I'm ready for a book of sustenance.  And I got one of little, a James Patterson, for the beach.   

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Beco: tha baby shit we love, part 1

When Ocean was an infant, I tried a Maya wrap, a Kangaroo Korner fleece pouch, and a regular ring sling, and she always seemed to get devoured and lost in the abyss and none of them were very comfortable, especially for walking long distances.  So after pouring over the babywearing forum (yes, they have a forum dedicated to this as well as any other subject a crunchy type would want to peruse, from breast feeding to uncirc'd penises), we decided to splurge and get the highly rated $140 Beco carrier.
And I'm glad we did, as we are loving it.  It's super-comfortable & can accommodate a wide range of body sizes (read: pot bellies & post-baby bellies!) and, unlike the Ergo,  comes in cool prints (ours is the cameron).  Also, unlike the Ergo, it has a built-in fabric panel "infant insert" so it can properly sit a newborn and you can use it from day #1.   Since Ocean will not tolerate the stroller yet & prefers to be carried 24-7 (and who can blame her really?), an excellent carrier is a must and this is that.  I think in another month or so, she'll be big enough to ride in a back carry, which will make it easier to get things done (like washing dishes...not that I'm looking forward to that).  
I just have a couple of small gripes.  The web-site claims that you can easily breast feed while wearing the Beco, but, alas, not me.  There is no way in hell I'd be able to maneuver my ginormous beastly breasts into an appropriate position suitable for comfortable nursing in this.  But it may be able to work for smaller-breasted women, I wouldn't know.  
And it does get hot on these 90-degree days & there's nothing worse than wearing a sticky sweaty mess of a baby on a steamy hot day, but hey, we're in New England where those days are few & far between, and this carrier is perfect for the other 346 days.  

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

We went in and actually came out with what we went in for

No less than a miracle. 
Every time we go into Ikea, we regret it.  It's just this overwhelming sea of swedish plastic and pressboard, essentially a Euro-coated Wal-Mart. It's always terribly over-crowded, we always feel a bit nauseous from eating too many meatballs, and we never quite find what we want (but manage to spend a couple hundred regardless on cheap plastic crap that we don't exactly need). We spend all this time searching and writing out the number codes on the cards they give you only to inevitably find that what we're looking for is out of stock.  
Well, this time was relatively painless.  We went in for a cheap plastic high chair & that's what we came out with.  There was a brief moment of panic when we found only red high chairs in aisle #21 (I would have just gotten the red one, but Cory was concerned that it would clash with our bright green kitchen...I, on the other hand, have always been a fan of contrasting colors). We were then directed to aisle #15 where "all (read:most) of the children's items are," only to find exclusively white high chairs.  We finally found what we were looking for, a blue high chair, in aisle #17.  Mind you, these are the exact same high chairs just in different colors...wouldn't you think they'd all be in the same spot, in the same aisle, perhaps in the aisle with "all of the children's items"?  You would think.
Anyways, I'm happy we actually got what we went in for (plus an additional $100 of cheap plastic crap that we don't really need)...and Ocean is delighted.  After months of ogling and drooling over us eating, she can now sit up with us and enjoy her sippy cup of water.  Not exactly a prime rib, but she'll take whatever she can get.