Archive for November, 2008

Lights, camera…

November 30, 2008

We figured Christmas lights would be a big hit with Patrick, and we were right!  He couldn’t even wait for them to be put on the tree.  Micah was testing our lights, and Patrick’s Nonno took a string of them to show his grandson.  This was a real hit, as this picture shows:

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Thanks!

November 27, 2008

A post about everything I’m thankful for could go on for days, so I’ll summarize.  This year I’m giving joyful thanks for my family, especially my wonderful husband and son; my friends, old and new, near and far; my interesting and fulfilling career; the Internet, for enabling us all to keep in touch; digital cameras, for allowing Patrick’s fans to watch him grow up; the slow cooker, for saving us from eating frozen pizza every night; health insurance, for keeping our baby expenses somewhere near affordable; the baby swing, for helping Patrick sleep when I have to get stuff done; magazines, for featuring articles short enough I can actually read something in its entirety these days; the washer and dryer, for obvious reasons; and I could go on and on.  But there are family and friends to visit with, a baby to cuddle, and lots of good food to eat.  So quit reading and go celebrate!

Daddy knows best

November 23, 2008

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I’m sure it comes as no surprise to any of you that Micah is a wonderful father.  He is so loving and patient with Patrick that a woman approached me after church today just to tell me how lucky I am to have such a great husband (I already knew this, of course, but it never hurts to be reminded).

That being said, he is already doing his best to make sure that Patrick understands that Mommy is kind of crazy.  For example, she insists on these things called “baths.”  The other night, when they were looking at an animal book together, Micah was embellishing the part about a mama cheetah giving her baby a bath with commentary about the “poor, poor baby.”  And just this morning, when I insisted that Patrick wear his cute little argyle sweater to church, Micah was instructing him that the the best tactic for getting out of wearing it was to spit up all over it right after I got it on him.  (Incidentally, he didn’t spit up and received a number of compliments–although the nursery lady said he looked like a lawyer.)

Nature Boy

November 23, 2008

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Today’s adventure took us to Armand Bayou Nature Center, where we walked through wetland, forest, and prairie habitats and saw some interesting wildlife, including a beautiful white snake and baby alligators in the interpretive center and several armadillos out wandering around.

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The eyes have it–but not yet

November 21, 2008

I’m doing my best to enjoy Patrick as he is at this very moment, rather than constantly wondering–and, okay, worrying–about what will come next, but it’s hard not to be curious about how he’ll develop and change in the coming weeks, months, and years.  For one thing, I can’t believe we don’t even know yet what color his eyes will be.  At the moment, they’re very blue, but that could change as he gets older.  Of course, since I’m his mom, I have to think they’re perfect, no matter how they turn out.

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A librarian did that? A librarian??

November 19, 2008

Here’s an example of my maternal instinct trumping my librarian instinct.  Today Patrick and I went to our local branch library to get some books for him.  He was in a bit of a bad mood, so I quickly picked out a stack of kids’ books and checked them out.  I then stacked them on top of the trunk of my car while buckling my fussy boy into his car seat.  I put the books in the backseat, and we were off.

When we got home, I was astonished to see that one book, Eats, was still sitting on top of the trunk!  In my distracted rush to get Patrick home, I had completely overlooked it, but it stayed in place for a car ride of nearly two miles.  As Micah said, the library fairies were looking out for us today.

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Incidentally, as you can see, Eats was a big hit.

Smiley face

November 19, 2008

dscf0952While I consider myself a fairly happy person, I have to admit I’ve never been much of a smiler.  All my life, people have asked, “What’s wrong?” when everything is just fine, because my default facial expression tends to be serious (my sister tells me the same thing happens to her).  Patrick seems to take after me a bit in this way.  He’s not much for grinning, but he does have some really cute half-smiles.  You can see more examples in his new Facebook album.

Hitting the bottle

November 15, 2008

And now for an update on Patrick’s feeding situation.  As you know if you’ve been reading here for a while, he lost more weight than he should have in the week after he was born, and since then, we’ve been supplementing his breastfeeding with formula.  I had hoped eventually to go back to breastfeeding exclusively, but that was not to be.  For whatever reason, no matter what I tried, my body couldn’t even come close to meeting Patrick’s nutritional needs.  I ended up making both him and myself miserable trying to make it work, so I was tremendously relieved that when I met with a lactation consultant, she confirmed my belief that breastfeeding just wasn’t the right thing for us and basically gave me official permission to give up and get on with my life.

Still, I haven’t quite given up entirely.  Since Patrick’s pediatrician said even a little breastfeeding is beneficial, I still do it several times a day, but I know he gets most of his calories and nutrients from formula, which takes a huge weight off my mind.  I’m so grateful that high-quality formula is readily available and that he seems perfectly happy with it.

Micah has asked me what has surprised me about having a kid, and I have to say that the difficulty of breastfeeding was something of a shock.  Even after taking a six-hour class about it and reading plenty of instructional literature, I was unprepared for the reality of being physically unable to feed my child.  I can understand why advocates of breastfeeding don’t want to set new moms up for failure, but I wish I had known that this could be a real–and frankly quite dangerous–problem.  As it was, I ended up dealing with one of the most frustrating and demoralizing experiences of my life (and I’ve been to grad school–twice–so I know from frustrating and demoralizing).

In the end, I have to remember what we’re trying to accomplish here.  When, as part of the six-hour class, we were asked to reflect on our breastfeeding goals, I think I came up with something that seemed reasonable at the time but now appears hopelessly ambitious, like breastfeeding for six months.  Now I think I was framing the question incorrectly.  My goal should not have focused on my desire to breastfeed but rather on my desire to raise a happy, healthy son.  When I consider matters from that perspective, I feel completely confident I’m doing the right thing.

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This little light of mine

November 13, 2008

Micah found this fun book of “play and learn” activities for kids that includes the suggestion to “put on a light show” by shining a flashlight around a darkened room.  This is a real hit with Patrick.  He follows the light with his eyes and looks completely fascinated–well, until he starts trying to grab it and realizes he can’t.

Since this activity is hard to photograph, here’s a picture of Patrick, thinking, “These idiots are my parents?  You have got to be kidding.”

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Batting practice

November 11, 2008

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Patrick has recently learned to bat at objects dangled in front of him.  I guess he is gradually figuring out that his hands are attached to his body and that he can do stuff with them–what fun!  He especially likes hitting toys that rattle or jingle (or things his parents are holding over him, since this results in oohs and ahhs).