Thursday, December 1, 2016

Other side, please

Kip is just about 2 1/2 years old now and it's showing in how he communicates with me. He's been learning words left and right for a while now, but he's stringing them into sentences lately. Sorry if this is TMI, but hey, this is a record for me as much as anything.

Much of my communication with Kip revolves around breastfeeding (which I'm still doing with him). When he was about six months old I realized I could tell him to switch sides and he would, obligingly, let go and wait for me to give him the other breast. "Side" was one of his first words, "nurse minute" was one of his first phrases, and now he tells me in increasingly complex sentences that he's ready to for me to give him the other side to drink. This morning it was "Mommy, other side, please nurse minute." The grammar isn't quite there, but it's closer and closer.

It's a beautiful thing to see how my child is growing, especially with so many other things in the world to be depressed about. This is likely the last time I'll be so much around a child of this age, certainly the last time I'll breastfeed a child. I don't feel mystical about breastfeeding. Sometimes it's downright annoying when he's trying to get into my shirt, or whining at me for "nurse minute." And yet it's in the way we've learned to communicate together that I can, in many ways, see most clearly how he's developing.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Boomers suck

Warning, there are some swears in here. My optimism is flagging today and I'm pissed.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Pain and fear, but maybe hope

I want to say some very crude, very harsh words right now, but I'll refrain.

Watching Hillary Clinton lose two days ago now was dumbfounding and painful in a way that I don't think any other election has ever been. The polls said she had a high chance of winning. Everyone thought she was going to win, even conservatives. I thought that democrats would turn out in droves to vote against Trump.

And then they didn't.

In moments of bitterness I blame people being misogynist, for hating Hillary Clinton, whose biggest flaw looks to me like ambition. The people who buy the arguments about Benghazi and emails are looking for a reason to disqualify her. There's this visceral hatred of Hillary Clinton that I simply can't explain (though I remember thinking long ago that was a good reason to steer clear of her). I hope that hatred of her doesn't extend to all ambitious women. I'm not sure we'll get another chance to see for many decades, though.

In less bitter moments I can admit that Hillary, for all her experience, didn't offer much of a vision to the American people. She stood for the status quo, and while I thought preserving things like Obamacare and climate change accords would at least inspire people a little bit, it apparently didn't. She didn't actually stand for greater equality for POC (perhaps trying to not alienate the white people who didn't trust her anyway), so while they voted for her, their turnout wasn't as high as it was four years ago for Barak Obama. Republicans take some blame/credit for that as well as they did everything in their power to restrict voting for minorities and young people.

They know how to play to win.

Trump is at least being gracious in his win, which I didn't expect. I hope that he will actually govern the country for everyone in it and not just republicans. I hope the Real Donald Trump is more pragmatic and less bigoted than the one I've listened to for the last year. I hope my nation survives.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Day in the life, April edition

We left late because I insisted on finishing Sylvia's Easter bonnet for sharing time--the project she should have been involved in and yet I accomplished essentially by myself because Sylvia revealed its necessity on the drive home from OHSC and we had a visit from our Home teacher that I wasn't able to cancel before he showed up and after all that Sylvia went to bed rather than stay up and help me with the hat.

Fair enough. I was up until 1 am.

Because I was up so late I got up late and Friday is a morning that Derrick leaves early to go teach. He was nice enough to get the kids more or less ready, except Kip, who decided to poop just at the time we should have been leaving. Oh, and in the process of cleaning up I discovered that my ever so helpful husband had done a load of laundry (necessary since one of the kids wet the bed) and really, you just shouldn't leave laundry sitting all day long. It sours. I can not abide sour laundry.

Got the laundry up and we got out of the door just about the time Sylvia really needed to be at school. About halfway to school Sylvia announces her pants are wet.


I haven't packed any spares.

I take the boys to child care since I'm already so late for Sylvia and we need to go home anyway to get her some clothes. Paul insists that I finish his leaopard print juggling ball and that takes like two minutes and then we're gone. Finally, something's gone smoothly. Oh, and just before we leave Aman comes back for Bayan's kindy bag, so it's not just me who's having a morning, and while he's there Kip calls him "Baba", which is simply adorable.

I get Sylvia home, get her away from her tablet and changing, and while she's doing that I get some stuff going for dinner (potato pizza--dough and sliced potatoes). I make her watch a video about making friends since that's something she's complained about lately and then gather things together again so we can go.

Sylvia's school sandals are covered in dog pee.

I swear.

The only shoes Sylvia has are sneakers with no shoelaces. I get Sylvia in the car and we drive over to Target and hunt around for shoelaces. None in the kids department, none in the accessories, but I finally find them in the ladies shoe department. We pay and go and get Sylvia to school, only two hours late.

She's just in time for recess.

She's missed sharing.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

809 pictures later

Today is my last day in the US. I've been here for a month, visiting family and friends. I also went on a writing cruise. It's time to go home--I miss my family--but I'm going to miss being here among friends and family. I've only taken 809 pictures on this trip, which sounds like a lot, but most certainly doesn't capture the heart of the experience of visiting.

Still, here are a few of my favorites from the last month:

And from the cruise:

Such an awesome experience. I wish I could come back every year, but of course I have responsibilities and a limited budget.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Year update, a month late

Kip's been a year old for a month now (tomorrow, anyway) and I should write down a few stats before more time passes.

When Kip was just a year he had seven teeth. The seventh (on the bottom) poked through a couple of days before his first birthday. The eighth showed up a couple of days after. And then, last week, he got another tooth, this time a molar. I think he's excited about this food stuff. I made him a yellow cake with chocolate frosting for his birthday, which he mostly turned into a big, huge mess while I took pictures.

At his 1 year appointment (which was a week after his first birthday, but close enough) Kip weighed 10 kg and was 76.5 cm long. He got two shots that day and took them well. So glad one of them was the MMR since now we know measles erases part of the immune system's records of previous infections.

I can tell I haven't been as diligent about signing with Kip. After his one sign I expected him to add a few more to his vocabulary, but it hasn't been happening. Oh well. Makes me really miss the support system (read: local signing time) that we used to go to.

Sylvia also lost a tooth last week. She wiggled it and wiggled it and finally twisted it around so it was hanging on by almost nothing, at which point I reached in and plucked it out. We still haven't had a visit from the tooth fairy because we all keep forgetting to stick the tooth under Sylvia's pillow at night. I might just pay her $5 and let her keep her tooth.

Today was the last day of school holidays. We still have the weekend, of course, but today's the last non weekend day. Sylvia wishes she had another week of holidays, and I think Kip and Paul just wish I weren't working so they could be home with me. We don't really do that much when we're home. I took the kids to the South Australia Museum last week. Sylvia begged to go back, I suspect more because she wanted to catch pigeons (she was successful on our first trip) than because she wanted to see the museum. We didn't do much this week. It's been too cold so all we were able to do was hang around the house watching cartoons. I did make sure we had some outing or activity every day, even if just a trip to the grocery store, but it's so hard when it's cold. Looking forward to the next school holiday when it'll be warm enough to do stuff and go places!

Monday, June 1, 2015


I don't think I've every really been big on my own birthdays. Sure, it's fun to have cake and celebrate a little, and yes, it's the anniversary of the beginning of me as an independent person (which is important) but I don't think I really understood the significance of my birthday until I had a child of my own.

My birthday is the day my mom went from being one, responsible only for herself, to becoming two; the anniversary of her taking on a huge, life-changing responsibility. In a sense it's not really my day at all, or at the very least not about me alone but about me and my mom.

Happy birthday to me, and happy birth day to my Mom, who had what sounds like a pretty scary birth experience with me and yet didn't let that stop her from going through the whole thing three more times. Thanks for thirty seven years of everything from nose and bum wiping to dropping me off at college (and paying for it!) to watching me become a mother and supporting me through those challenges. Love you.