Monday, August 31, 2009
Last week I flew to Florida with Finnan and Jude. I got a few shocked looks when I told people I was traveling with the two of the them myself, but, hey, what was the worst that could happen, they both cry the entire flight? Thankfully, this did not happen, nor did the even worse possibilities that occurred to me once I was walking through the airport (one of them gets lost or hurt). However...the flight was not particularly pleasant. Finnan could/would not sit still and with a three month old in my arms or nursing there was very little I could do about it. The whole flight I spent amicably trying to block him from entering the aisle, but when the seat belt sign beeped on indicating landing, I knew he would have to get into his seat. Exacerbating matters, during the instant of the beeping, I recognized a certain squat and strained face. Argh! How was I going to get him to sit down now?!? (Looking back this seemed to occur at the worst possible moment. Then I realized even if he had pooped at the beginning of the flight, when, in theory, I could have changed him, how could I have squeezed into the bathroom with Finnan and Jude? And changed his diaper in there while holding Jude? Any suggestions? Change a dirty diaper in the aisle? Ask the flight attendant to hold Jude? Or better yet, ask her to change the diaper?)
Well, it turns out ,if you want Finnan to calm down, talk about ladders. Specifically the one he and Atticus just built for his tree house. All tools and materials required for ladder building should be mentioned and described. Everything that one can do with a ladder should be considered. Everything one can't do with a ladder should be considered. Then just when I was thinking, What more can I say about this ladder?!? Why do they make you sit down so far in advance of landing?!?, Finnan asks for more. More talk about ladders, ok, I'll start from the beginning, and he listened intently again.
I survived my first (and only) flight with two children under two. Phew. I think we are staying home until Christmas.
Don't worry, as the tree house progresses, I'll post more pictures. Atticus is doing a great job. According to him it is a work of art that can not be planned. You can tell he misses his college sculpture class.
Sunday, August 16, 2009
We've hit another milestone (isn't it fun when these come so close together- it makes one feel so accomplished :)), Jude is now three months old. When pregnant or with a newborn, people often tell you that three months is a turning point. With Finnan, I counted down the days until three months and then kept counting. Finnan didn't seem to emerge from his "fourth trimester" until 4 months. Jude, on the other hand, has emerged!
Suddenly, the stroller and carriers are now longer unbearable and his awake periods are becoming longer and more and more enjoyable. Jude typically takes two 2-3 hour naps/per day. He begins his day between 7 and 8 and ends it between 8 and 9. He is still pretty flexible in his sleep/awake cycles and can manage pretty well if a nap is significantly delayed or disrupted with activity. Unfortunately, he is not consistently sleeping through night (although we are lucky some nights!) and he pretty much always sleeps in his swing. Since the click-clack of the swing is causing me to hallucinate in my sleep, we are in the process of moving the crib from Finnan's room into our closet. (So far, it has been a two-day project, which is still not complete- such is life with two children under two.) But when the crib is in place, I am hoping to try to phase him out of the swing. He still sleeps swaddled, although one hand often emerges as he likes to suck on his hands.
During Jude's awake time, he continues to smile, giggle and talk. Belly kisses, tickling and laughing all seem to make him smile and giggle. He has also started to figure out tummy-time. While he never minded tummy-time before, he wouldn't do much head lifting. Now he is lifting his head consistently. He has also started to bat at toys with his hands and feet. Overall he is a very social baby, which makes him a ton of fun!
*Update: Since posting this yesterday, he has rolled from his tummy to his back a handful of times. I thought it was a fluke, but he keeps doing it!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
I'm sure most people would agree that it is impossible to pass a farmer's market with fresh peaches, so once again we had a bag of peaches staring me down in the kitchen. This time, there were clearly too many to eat before they went bad, I decided, cobbler it is!
Given the abundance of fresh fruit over the past couple of months, I have made a few cobblers, and decided that I did not need to look up a recipe. I've found the basic gist is equal parts flour, milk, and sugar. Of course you also need salt and baking soda, but since I couldn't remember those amounts and had an eager toddler who didn't want to slow down for recipe searching, we went ahead and substituted Bisquick for the flour. The rest is pretty easy- melt some butter in a pan, pour the flour/milk/sugar mixture over the butter and add fruit. Bake at 350 until the fruit is bubbly.
Today, I decided that I would increase Finnan's baking responsibilities. I measured out each of the ingredients and he put them each in the bowl and did the mixing. I guess he was feeling ambitious, as he went ahead and made some recipe alterations of his own. First, he decided my blackberry-peach ratio was off. To fix this he snacked on a few blackberries. Then, he thought the recipe would surely be improved if all of the blackberries and peaches were first soaked in ice water (the water I used to blanch the peaches) before being added to the cobbler (see picture). Or maybe he was just creating a very nutritious drink, as after all the fruit was added to the cobbler, he drank the fruity ice water out of the bowl. When watching this, I knew what the final outcome would be (water all over Finnan and floor), but hey, my kitchen floor needed some cleaning and so did Finnan.
Unfortunately, I can not yet report on the cobbler. It is being saved for tonight's "book" club. (I have to put "book" in quotations, because the club doesn't even pretend to read anymore). I'm just thankful that most of the women in book club are mothers, so they will understand if the cobbler didn't come out quite right.
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Are the terrible twos inevitable? Finnan is going to be turning two in a few weeks and I am hoping this infamous alliteration will bypass our house. Atticus and I have continued to be amazed at Finnan's disposition and adaptability. In the past year, he survived the addition (and the related moving around) flawlessly, welcomed a baby brother gracefully, and has so far managed being a non-verbal toddler with ease. I won't pretend that he does not have his moments (yes, he does fall victim to tantrums and he does not always share), but I wanted to take a few minutes to record some of the sweet things he has been doing recently.
*He enjoys sharing with his family members. Atticus and I are always being given bites of even his favorite treats (the regurgitated ones are the best :)) and Jude often ends up with trucks and tractors next to him.
*Finnan has taken to styling my hair. However, I can't recommend him unless you want to look like Cousin It! from the Adams Family.
*He cleans up after his spills. Or, he at least tries if given a paper towel.
*He has been very generous with hugs and kisses. He loves "group" hugs- when one of us is holding him he will bring all three of us together. He also voluntarily gives Jude kisses on the head.
*Everything can be turned into a car or airplane...food, utensils, books, wood chips....
*When he knows he is not suppose to do something, he will start to do it, look at us, smile, shake is head and say noooo, noooo in the sweetest voice you could ever imagine.
*"Help," "outside," "drive," and "walk" seem to be my magic words with Finnan as he always wants to do all four.
*Finnan loves to read. And I love it too- we get to cuddle up next to each other and read book after book. He has recently been loving some of the Dr. Seuss classics (The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham), But No Elephants, and any book about trains or trucks. We have also started to going to the library every week or so to add some fresh books to our repertoire.
*Before going to bed every night, he says ni-ni to various ojects in the house (like Goodnight, Moon). After we read his last book of the night, he will pick out a book to bring to bed so that he can "read" before going to sleep.
*He is now sleeping in a "big brother bed."
*He is in the process of expanding his dance moves. Now, his favorite is the finger dance.
*He has started enjoying tea in the mornings- this tradition was started by his Paw-Paw who would make a tea, cream, honey concoction for the both of them during the mornings they spent together. Now he brings me his tea mug (a yellow mug with a tyrannosaurus on it) every morning so that I will make him his tea.
*He of course still loves trucks, cars, tractors, blocks and tools. His play with them has become more imaginative. He has also taken to puzzles recently.
*He has started to take to the pool. He is blowing bubbles and going under water without being startled. Even his trucks can swim under water!
This list could go on and on. I hope it wasn't too long already...
Jude is one happy baby...that is, if he is laying down with a friendly face above him. He will smile, coo, and laugh for hours if the right conditions are met. But...do not put Jude in a car seat, on a boat, in a stroller, in a sling, in a Bjorn, or in an Ergo for any length of time. It's hard to imagine how charming and "easy" Jude can be while at home and so unhappy when transported. Sorry Jude, Finnan and I have to leave the house sometime!