Wednesday, December 28, 2005

He's a growing boy

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Kirk loves his exer-saucer. He's so strong. He about 80% able to sit up on his own. And he loves laying on his side. He has just discovered the crib toy attached to the slats on his crib. And he is realizing that his feet are always there, not just when he's on the changing table.

It's kind of strange comparing him to his tiny new cousin. Kirk was that small. But I don't remember him seeming quite *that* fragile. He was always strong, he just happened to also be tiny. And he was little because he was early, not because he was just little. Is it revisionist memory? But Mr. b and my sister both agree that Kirk didn't seem so frail, even when hooked up to all his hospital wires. Maybe our opinions will change when the poor little guy gets a chance to put on some weight. I'm sure he'll fill out eventually. Or else Kirk is just always going to be the bigger cousin!

Diablo and Jon: I'm so very sorry about George. How heartbreaking for you to go through another loss so soon. Like I said in my message last night, let me know if there is anything we can do. I hope Larry is coping with the loss of his buddy. Who knows, maybe he'll stop being such a douchepacker now that he's a solo kitty! I know that Sally the Squeakers Squirrel certainly came out of her shell when her oppressor, poor Mister Smoe died.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

I'm a mom

I'm playing hooky today and went to get my hair chopped off. (It's being donated to Locks of Love. That strikes me as very Jo from Little Women.) I mentioned I'm shedding like a beast due to the postpartum hair loss thing. So when I went to pay, the receptionist asked, "Are you a student? No wait, you're a mom." Huh? Explain to me how those are mutually exclusive.

Kirk wasn't confused about his new mommy. I didn't know if he'd think I looked weird or something. No worries. But when I was holding him up on my shoulder, he kept trying to grab my hair. But it's not there anymore. Then he was confused!

Monday, December 19, 2005

Celebrity Babysitters!

Imagine my surprise when I'm paging through my current issue of Entertainment Weekly and I suddenly see an interview with Diablo! Fan-frickin-tastic!

Diablo and Jon stayed with Kirk on Friday night so I could go with Mr. b to his annual work holiday party. They rule. They even brought Kirk a present! (An awesome AC/DC long-sleeve T and hat set, very kick ass.) Once again we a) didn't have money to pay the babysitter (although that was waved off as nonsense because, see above about ruling) and b) didn't have any kind of snacks and beverages in the house. We really need to get this babysitter thing figured out. At least while we're still using suckers, I mean friends, we don't have to worry as much.

The holiday party was a lot of fun but Mr. b manages college kids. And I don't have a helluva lot in common with those kids anymore. I found that after a couple of hours of dancing, a little wine and some snacks, I was ready to go. Sure, one of us had to get some sleep because while we had a sitter for the night, someone had to get up with Kirk in the morning. But I also didn't mind the excuse. It was fun to see everyone but I just don't need to stay out until after bartime. Or even until bartime!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

It's a rich man's world

I just wrote out checks for all the hospital bills. They'll go in the mail and I'll be done. And then they won't send me hateful reminders any more. It was really annoying that everything was billed separately--Kirk's hospital stay and my hospital stay and our regular doctor and his neonatal physician and my breast pump. It would have been so much easier if they had been consolidated. Then I would have just made payments. I mean, I could have paid off one bill, and then the next, and then the next. But "the next" would never have been happy with that arrangement. So finally I decided to just increase my bank account's line of credit and pay them all off at once.

I thought we had done a pretty good job of saving for while I was on leave. I had paid off some bills and saved up enough for a mortgage payment. But I hadn't calculated for the adjustment time when you go back to work. Like all the insurance premiums that weren't taken out of my checks, because I was on unpaid leave, were deducted all at once. And I have no paid time off left so I loose money taking Kirk to his well baby appointments and whatnot. All that has kicked my ass. Especially since I'm just now starting to get back on track and it's the effing holidays and you spend so much more money this time of year. Shitballs.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Oral Fixation

Kirk is totally teething. They still haven't busted through, but they're there alright. The 2 bottom front teeth. He loves chewing. If he's playing with my hand, he'll grab my finger or knuckle and start just gnawing away. He chomps on his toys. He constantly has his own fingers in his mouth. Oh, he still doesn't suck his thumb. He still hasn't settled on a particular digit, specific hand, or even constant number of fingers. He jams anywhere from one to four in there and starts mawing. He even chews on his forearm, especially when propped against my shoulder or when he's down for Tummy Time. This evening, while Mr. b was changing his pants and getting him ready for bed, I noticed a strange red splotch on Kirk's right arm. He totally gave himself a hickey!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


This Sunday was my first choir concert of the season and almost my whole family came. There was a very full house, in a church that seats a thousand, and many of the attendees were kids and babies. I could still pick out the sound of my own son from many aisles behind me, over the rest of the noise. Just like the penguins in that penguin movie!

When I got done singing, I greeted my posse. Kirk was wearing only one sock. Mr. b has no idea when the other one got lost but we didn't find it anywhere. So that's the end of the cute brown socks he got as a gift from his little buddy Henry's mom! My dad sagely predicted that it is only the first of many mysteriously lost socks.

Kirk was sick with a cold Mr. b shared. So was I but I could at least sing through it. (Mr. b works with college kids. They get sick as often as pre-schoolers.) Monday was the first time, of what will undoubtedly be many days, I took off work to stay home with a sick kid. Auntie G told Mr. b that she always kinda liked sick days because then O was all cuddly. That's how Kirk was. He wouldn't even sleep on his own. I held him for 2 hours for his afternoon nap.

We went out for some dinner after picking up Kirk from Auntie Daycare yesterday. Kirk had just had a formula bottle before we left but became noticably thirsty while we were eating. So, we ordered some apple juice from the bar for him. That was the very first time he's ever added to our restaurant bill.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Baby Boom

Saturday night I went to a holiday party by myself. It was kind of weird. I mean, Mr. b and I have always had pretty much the same friends so we could always go to shows and parties and stuff together, hang out apart during the event, and then go home together. But we didn't manage to get a babysitter. Planning for a babysitter is turning out to be really hard. I don't want to just always call Grandma. I mean, she has a long way to drive and I don't want to put much stress on her because of the MS and I just don't want to take her for granted. But there's so much crap going on this month and there's no way we're going to manage to find sitters for every single event. So, since Mr. b had been out the night before, it was my turn.

Holiday parties 5 years from now are going to be a rather different matter. At that one rather small gathering, there was the husband who had just been at birth class all that day and his wife was too exhausted to come to the party. There was another couple who had scored Grandma-sitter at the last minute and are now expecting their second. There was the husband who announced his wife wasn't attending due to morning (evening) sickness! Squeeee! And, not to be left out, the wife that declared she and her husband were going to start trying in the summer.

I guess it makes sense that we're now in the phase of our lives when everyone starts to procreate. A couple of years ago we attended like 500 weddings. It's just a bit odd because Mr. b and I were married for such a long time before we got around to having a kid. We were the only married couple in our group of friends for years and years. So it was an adjustment to just no longer be the only marrieds. Now that everyone else is catching up, and then getting knocked up in a traditionally timely manner, we're just not ahead of the curve any longer. Although I do still hear from certain girlfriends that I broke the seal, so to speak, and they figure if I could do it, I who was always vocally terrified of being preggers, then they could do it, too.

Friday, December 09, 2005

New babies are small

Kirk's new cousin Lukas was born yesterday morning! (Kirk and Luke. I know.) He was 1 week late which means that he had an extra 4 weeks of womb time on Kirk. And he was still only 3 ounces bigger than Kirk was--5# 7oz! So tiny. It's only been 5 months and I still couldn't believe that Kirk was ever that tiny. Tinier! Holding Lukas last night, he just weighed nothing in my arms. Kirk is now a Big Boy. Automatic graduation. Crazy.

I got home from the hospital and pulled out all of Kirk's preemie and under-7-pounds clothes. I didn't think they'd ever get used again. I mean, even their doctor was estimating Lukas would be at least 7 pounds. Of course I won't be able to pass along the cute sailor outfit Morrigan got Kirk, since it's way too summery for December in Minnesota.

I made my SIL give me the full labor story. It was interesting to hear the slight similarities and major differences between our experiences. She was also tensing her thighs during the contractions but she wasn't ever able to break free of doing that. They gave her a different initial drug than they gave me. She didn't have an IV in at first, which is why they gave me the Nubain. But after the pill they gave her didn't help, they gave her a shot of morphine in the ass. Which also didn't work. So she ended up with an epidural, which took 2 tries to get in. And it's a damn good thing she had that because when they went to do the episiotomy, Lukas shot out, tearing her. She said it took almost an hour to stitch her back up. Yikes. I am very pleased to have had the episiotomy now. Sure, I can still feel a difference where I was cut whenever we start having sex. But the other option would have been tearing. No thanks.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005


One year ago today I peed on a stick and found out I was pregnant. Hard to believe.

Last night we had our very first non-family member babysitter. And it was the first time someone other than Mommy or Daddy put Kirk down to sleep for the night. Mr. b was more nervous about leaving than I was, I think. Our friend's fiancée babysat for us. I'm glad it was a friend, instead of a 13 year old, for our first time out. Apparently Kirk was a good boy (show off) and didn't even fight going to bed. She even gave him cereal--which I totally gave her a pass on! It was just a great experience and I'm so thrilled she was willing to do it. She wouldn't even accept payment, which unfortunately means we still don't know how much to pay babysitters....

Of course being out for fancy dinner with Mr. b's business associates means I went to bed in a wine haze. And then Kirk woke up at 4:00am. Sigh. But it's nice being able to drink wine again. I had a glass with Thanksgiving dinner and it was the first time since early last December that I had anything alcoholic at all. I am a total lightweight now. Which I guess means I'm a cheap date!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater

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Kirk ate this pumpkin. Well, not all of it obviously. But his first non-cereal food was puree of this very pumpkin he helped his daddy pick out back in October. I was processing the pumpkin for my own cooking plans (pumpkin cream pasta sauce tonight--delicious!) and figured we might as well see if he liked it. Plain pumpkin is very bland so there were no taste issues. Kirk ate it up yum. I filled up an ice cube tray (thanks for the tip, womba) with some of the puree as well so that Kirk can have pumpkin later in the year, too. I'm officially convinced. Making your own baby food is easy. Now I just need to get my own blender since I'm borrowing one from Mr. b's aunt for my pumpkin projects. In the meantime, I have tons of commercially prepared foods, all three stages. My co-worker gave me everything her son never got around to eating in each phase.

Kirk's poops are changing. Oh, he's still only going every 2 or 3 days. But he's starting to poop out actual turds. Mr. b didn't believe me the first time but he saw the baby duke with his own eyes today. I'm sure it's because of the change in Kirk's diet. But I'm concerned about constipation and so now I need to make sure he gets enough juice and water. There's certainly fiber in homemade pumpkin sauce!

All this eating while sitting up is making a lot more dirty laundry. Kirk actually needs bibs now and the ones he wears are rarely re-usable without being washed again. He likes putting his fingers in his mouth when there's still food in there, then putting his slimey fingers all over his pants and head. And his spit-ups are more interestingly colored than just formula and milk spits.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Body Image

I just noticed that the tips of my nipples are really dry and cracked. When I brought it up to Mr. b he said he noticed that about a week before. They seriously look like they should hurt but they don't at all. Did I really have calluses from the limited amount of breast feeding that my little crappy nurser did? Apparently. For about a week after Kirk had his last boobie feeding I could still squeeze out a couple of drops of milk. I tried the other night and got nothing. So that means I'm officially out of the "if you are pregnant, may become pregnant, or are nursing" side-effect category. I think my boobs feel different, too. I asked Mr. b about that and he said that they'll "never" be the same again. Great. Just what I was looking to hear, buddy. I'm not sure if they'll go back down to pre-pregnancy teeny weeny size. None of my old bras fit yet. What I really need to do is go in for a proper bra fitting. I've never had one in my life.

And then I need to start seriously working on the pregnancy weight. I went up 2 pants sizes and 1 shirt size when I was buying back-to-work clothes. I honestly don't care about clothing sizes though. I just want to be fit again. And I don't feel like I am anymore. I know the middle of the holiday season is probably the worst time of year to try to combat unnecessary weight though. I just need to start doing daily sit-ups to try to take care of the below-belly-button pudge that remains of my preggo belly. And figure out the best time of day to get back to riding my stationary bike. Now that Kirk is big enough for his exer-saucer, which he loves, I can have him hang out in there next to me while I ride. Mommy needs some aerobic activity. I know it's vain but I don't want to be like the rest of my extended family that all totally porked out after having babies. Sure, some of them were already solidly on that path pre-kids. But I still don't want to go that way.