Jaded Optimist

Mothering, making, and generally blathering on

No babies were harmed in the making of this video August 23, 2008

Filed under: Personal — bonniep @ 9:12 pm

Sitting isn’t quite as exciting as rolling over, but it is much better training for a lifetime as an information worker! I still get her upright to start, but she can hold herself in a seated position for a good while…until she doesn’t. The noise at the end is Charlotte asking me to open a bag of markers in her new paper doll craft kit. The kit which was purchased for the train ride after I nixed both the beading kit and the sand art kit as inappropriate train ride choices. We are ready for the train…but is the train ready for us?? (Hint: Charlotte told me tonight that she will be singing on the train.)


She’d like to thank the Academy… August 13, 2008

Filed under: Personal — bonniep @ 10:26 pm

Also, thanks to flip video. Little flip ultra that I was so excited to acquire, sorry to have used you so infrequently. I do have a tendency to “save” new purchases. Ahem. Just be glad that I didn’t share the 15 minute video of C doing a dance concert in the living room…

Actually, can folks leave me a comment (I know, this is asking a whole heckuva lot, at least I am assuming that is why I get so few comments. Hint hint.) about whether they can view the video ok, and whether they would like to see more videos on the blog.

In other news, C has just 7 more days of camp, and then a week off in between camp and school. And G is working *a lot*. So, a week, me, two kids…what to do? Call me crazy (actually, please don’t as I have already booked the tickets), M, C, and I are heading down to Portland to visit my unsuspecting cousin. Actually, she knows we are on the way, just not what she is in for. Just kidding S! These girls…very well behaved. G has forcedconvinced me to take the train instead of driving. I am still nervous…three hours in car with two kids—yeah, there might be a lot of crying, and pulling over, but at least no one else would know about it. On the train, I might be able to tend to the kids, but under the stern glare of a hundred other passengers.

And then there is the little matter of getting me, C, M, stroller + carseat, luggage, and diaper bag from the train to the hotel and around town. Current big debate—bring C’s carseat to enable us to cab or not? Installing two car seats in a cab fills me with fear (seems like the first $10 of every cab ride would be me installing the car seat while the cabbie laughs…or cries) but so does walking two miles pushing the stroller with M in it and trying to carry C on my shoulders or back at the same time. Anyway, looking forward to the trip. Especially the part where I get to sit in the bathroom for three hours to have light to read (or knit!) after the girls go to bed. Oh, G will be sorry he missed out on this trip!


The Official Word August 11, 2008

Filed under: Personal — bonniep @ 10:19 pm

Height: 25 inches (75-90th percentile)

Weight: 13 lbs. 13 oz. (50-75th percentile)

Head: 41.4 cm (50-75th percentile)

Great tone and head strength…enough that the ped. thought I could put M in the jogging stroller now, even though usually babies aren’t ready until about six months old. Which means I could start running again. Which seems like it should be good news, after all I love running. But I realized what I don’t love is getting *back into* running. Sigh.


4 months old August 10, 2008

Filed under: Personal — bonniep @ 10:01 pm

M turned four months old on Friday. Tomorrow she has her ped. appt. and we will have the official measurements. I can still remember (as can G) crying when she was four days old because it was going so fast already (repeat after me: “baby blues”). Since then, time has just gone faster. Sniff.

At fours months she:

1. Does cute little sneezes still, big yawns, big stretches, little chewy mouth movements (still strange for me to see a baby tongue since we didn’t with C what with the tongue tie and all). Babbles a lot, with the occasional screech. Doesn’t laugh so much as wheeze and screech.

2. Is very mellow and smiley. Saves the biggest smiles for her daddy—she smiles at him even when he isn’t looking at her. Just catching sight of him is enough to trigger a huge open mouthed grin. She also smiles for C, but is a bit more wary. *Mostly* falls asleep in the car, but if not…yikes! Super loud sobs which put me in a panic, making me want to yell “You’re gonna be OK! Say the (*(&(&^%%% words!” ala Reservoir Dogs. Then when I stop the car and rush to the back seat, she immediately stops crying and looks surprised, like, Oh? You’re here? But otherwise, smiley and mellow.


3. Hates tummy time with a passion, but not quite enough to figure out rolling over yet. Does not like to be alone. Likes to be held sitting up or in the sling facing out to experience the world. Likes to kick and kick in the tub. Starting to figure out rolling from back to front…at least, is halfway there.

4. Goes to bed pretty easily around 7:30 ish and sleeps until…well, lately it has been 4 am. And then sometimes will go right back to sleep after nursing, sometimes is up for an hour and then will go back to sleep, and once in a while just won’t go back to sleep. Last night however, she slept until 6 so I am hopeful. Napping is still pretty hit or miss…the occasional mega nap (by which I mean 60-120 minutes) but in general still does 20-40 minute cat naps. Can seem completely asleep in your lap, only to wake up bright eyed and bushy tailed if you attempt a swing or bed transfer. Or move. Or breathe too deeply. Or (hello weekends) C comes running in to tickle her feet.

5. Understands at least some of how hands work. Grabs hair, shirts, blankets, her own feet, toys, etc. Chews a lot, but no teeth signs as of yet. Enjoying taggie items, her activity mat, and some smallish stuff animals (those with chewable appendages).

6. Has totally sweet and adorable baby chub.

7. Is pretty game for whatever mommy cooks up, including the monthly picture with the birthday cat.

Actually, might need to talk with her about appropriate boundaries with the birthday cat.



My own brand of weirdness August 6, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — bonniep @ 11:42 pm
I am a short term planner–for the short term, I really like to have a plan. I like routine (Tuesdays are library day! Wednesdays we go to the Farmer’s Market! Mondays I do the lower body workouts from 10 minute solution Pilates on the ball and 10 minute solution tighten and tone pilates, etc. etc.) I like having vacations planned months in advance. I would rather have a bad plan than no plan at all…and a change to the plan makes me break out in a sweat even if the change is for the better. (G would be laughing now, or maybe crying…if he read the blog.)

So, decision making can be tough for me, because I really don’t like to change the plan later, so the decision has to be the right one the first time. But, and this is too bad, I also have a tendency to overestimate my capabilities. Witness countless dinner and party plans that had me up at midnight making pastry crust, or screaming at G "it is 12:03 and I need to be chopping basil from 12:01 to 12:04 and there is no freaking basil!" That type of thing. I have the feeling that if I just try harder and am more perfect, then there really will be 26 (or 40) hours in the day.

Sigh. Can you say controlling first born??

In the past few days a plan that I was holding onto became obviously wrong. Obvious to people around me, obvious to G, but not really obvious to me. So we talked at length last night, and came to a decision, and this morning I double checked that that was really the decision (poor, incredulous G who thought deciding once would be enough!) and I just feel sick about it. (Although that might be the shameful number of Junior Mints ingested tonight.) The plan had some points that were unresolved, which I was studiously ignoring because there was no good resolution and acknowledging that would have meant that the plan wasn’t going to work…but it was the plan! (I know, you are thinking that you never, ever want to go on vacation with me. The plus is that I panic about finding rental houses and such and get those details all worked out and solidified early…and I make excel spreadsheets to exactly divide all the costs of a group vacation…I’m not helping my case am I?)

I know that once I have made and settled into the new plan, I will be ok–because there will be a plan. That’s how I ended up ok with and even excited about things like up and moving to Seattle from Boston, or having a second kid. But this between plan part really really stressed me out.

Funny for the day…in the car with C we listen to "her music"–right now, Elizabeth Mitchell’s You are My Sunshine. The one verse contains "when I woke up I was mistaken please don’t take my sunshine from me." C pipes up–"Do you know why she was mistaking mommy? Because the sunshine belongs to everybody!"


cute kid overload August 4, 2008

Filed under: Personal — bonniep @ 12:06 am

In every picture of C holding M, M has the same expression. To me it says “I will always remember that *you* did this to me.”

The C-bird…an equal mix of gorgeous and silly. Would perhaps lean more towards the gorgeous if we took a brush to her with more frequency. When I started taking pictures she ran in to get her camera (the 2 mp one from camp…see earlier post). She set up with a blanket and some toys in the yard and said she was “camping”. A girl after my own heart—camping where you have a bathroom, refrigerator, and comfy bed nearby. She takes inordinate amounts of pleasure in these old, broken play sunglasses, including wearing them to camp.

And of course little M. As soon as the diaper comes off, the feet go up in the air, possibly to the hands, possibly all the way to the mouth. Still can’t sit up and not a big fan of being on her tummy, so the available poses are somewhat limited.













And of course, you need to be able to tell when the photo session is over.


Didja miss me? August 3, 2008

Filed under: Personal — bonniep @ 11:44 pm

I know, it’s been awhile. Sorry. Busy + some lousy photo days + outings on my own with the girls (means I have no hand for a camera) + busy + knitting = no blogging.

So, to catch up…G is back. M and C are thrilled. C is doing awesome at swimming class, even jumps in on her own now (!!) and M has figured out how her hands work and is reaching and grabbing for all sorts of things now.

Last weekend we (me, M, and C) hit the Bellevue Arts Festival. With two little kids, that means that in 3 1/2 hours we ate lunch, got a snack, waited in the face painting line, nursed twice, changed a diaper and used the potty, got C’s picture on a Bellevue police motorcycle, perused the fairy wings, kites, and furniture that you could sit on booths, and spent about 10 minutes looking at “real” art. Sigh. Oh, and after a woman walking by me said loudly “That baby is going to get a sunburn on its head!” we were completely humiliated and bought a nine dollar, way too big hat at Babystyle in the mall. [Long gone are the days when people (well, ok, one woman once) approached me at the mall to compliment me on my parenting skills. Now, it is public criticism or “Wow, it looks like you really have your hands full!”. Apparently that is what two kids will do to a person.]

At the face paint tent, C picked “bunny” although 90% of people who commented (and there were many comments) thought it was a kitty. She also convinced me to buy her a fairy princess crown.


C is in camp this summer, and the past week was “photography and scrapbooking” so you know I was excited. Each of the kids got their own little digital camera—2 mp, with no screen. Which meant that C came home with 20 extreme closeups of herself, and 20 pictures of the ground. Also, a scrapbook of said pictures. And this piece…

…which is kind of scary, and kind of genius, no?

Our tomato plants continue to astound and amaze us.


Lots and lots of gorgeous (tiny) tomatoes.

And I really am keeping busy with the knitting. Almost done with my first big project—the sweater for M. Just one more seam and weaving in all the ends left. Unfortunately, that is both the trickiest and the most boring part. Also unfortunately, the neck barely fits over her now…and this is supposed to be the 9 month size. Oops. 

To avoid that project, I have two new WIPs (works in progress)—a cardigan for C and a sock (hopefully someday to be a pair thereof) for me. Feel free to laugh about knitting a sock, G certainly does on a regular basis, but the Yarn Harlot assures us that once you go handmade socks you will never go back.

What else… went to a birthday party with C yesterday and she colored the birthday card while I was in the shower. When I checked it out, it said “ihop”. Apparently, she started to write “I hope you like your gift” but either ran out of space or spelling knowledge. Nonetheless, I was pretty excited to see her writing on her own like that.

We had overnight guests on Friday. Now we have a 10 day break before we get a cat, a family of four, one guy, and then my brother and his girlfriend all staying over for various lengths of time. I think in the next four and a half weeks we will have people here more nights than we won’t. Not that I am complaining, as they are one and all people we are excited to have stay with us, but for someone who tends toward the stressy… well. Hopefully the guest sheets will stand up to the onslaught.

M turns 4 months old on Friday. I know. I am tearing up too just thinking about it.