Monday, August 31, 2009

Beam Me Up

Okay, so we haven't posted anything lately... We've been busy! For one thing, Beatrice is growing up- rolling over, eating bananas, grabbing her feet and a host of other firsts. But James and I have firsts too, y'know!

We've made our first music video! It's for his song 'Beam Me Up' from the album Goodbye Strange Planet. Hope you like it!

video

Sunday, August 16, 2009

There's a First Time for Everything


Today Beatrice picked her nose for the first time. She’s quite the precocious four-month-old, wouldn’t you say? Lily, Bea and I were at our favorite Mediterranean restaurant, Pita House, when the Great Event took place. Lily and I were munching on gyro, falafel and shawarma while Beatrice chewed contentedly on her chubby little fingers. Then it happened. Her index finger slipped into her right nostril. “Don’t pick your nose!” I playfully chided her as she pulled the offending digit out, prominently displaying a perfect white baby booger. Of course, it wasn’t her first booger. We lost count of those ages ago. And she didn’t deliberately pick her nose. But it hardly mattered. It was enough to get me thinking.

Almost everything she does is a first for her. She rolled herself over for the first time last week. On Friday she went swimming for the first time. I thought about Lily’s 17-year-old brother Reuben, who is busy playing in a band these days. I’m 32. I could go into any bar at any time and get anything I want to drink. It’s no big deal to someone my age. Reuben’s pretty much grown, physically, but he still can’t go into a bar at all, much less get served alcohol legally. And Beatrice? She’s not even half a year old. It will be about 18 years before she can enter such an establishment. 18 years. That’s almost twenty. How many firsts will she experience in those years?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Perseid



Last night was the peak of the meteor shower. Jake and Lucy came over. We got Beatrice to sleep around 8:30 and waited a while.

Once it got to be pretty late, I lifted her out of her crib and we all got in the van and found a nice, dark field. Bea was fine with the transition to her carseat and she slept in the middle of the field and dew and starlight. Lucy and I lay on a baby blanket and looked at the night. James and Jake smoked cloves and talked.

I saw one streak shoot across the sky, but really the night was too cloudy for stargazing. Nevertheless, there was that magical feeling of connectedness looking up at the endless, endless. It's an ageless sensation and I can't wait to see the wonder grow in my daughter's eyes as she experiences the vastness of the night sky.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

List



What can we do on such a gloomy, rainy day? How about make a list?

clean the kitchen

read a book

write a letter to a friend who lives far away

write a letter to a family member who lives close by

decorate postcards

organize the closet

vacuum

paint a picture for a specific location in your home

draw a portrait of a favorite childhood pet

draw a self portrait

write a story

make a puppet out of your husband's favorite pair of socks

fix a delicious dinner

play dress-up and take silly pictures

exercise

shave your legs

write a love poem

write a tragic love story

memorize a Shakespearean monologue

sleep

rig up some Christmas lights inside a blanket tent

read an old journal


That's all I can come up with right now. You?


Sunday, August 9, 2009

Slumber Party


We had a lovely, busy weekend! My youngest siblings Raleigh and Emma stayed with us while our parents celebrated their 27th anniversary.

Raleigh is 12 and Emma is 10.

We stayed up late on Friday night watching Coraline and hanging out with Jake and Lucy (our friends who come over to play quite a bit but not enough. Lucy is girlrobotics.) We all ate ice-cream. Beatrice stayed up waaaay too late because she didn't want to miss anything.

On Saturday, James worked and we four got up late and three of us had eggs over toast. The kids didn't know how to eat it; they just ate the eggs off the top and didn't know what to do with the toast. Coffee.
After breakfast we went to the pool and nobody else was there. When Beatrice -who is too little to get in the chlorine pool- got fussy, we took her for a walk around the lake. Raleight and Emma were fascinated by the turtles and fish. Then it was back to the pool and a few more people showed up. James called when he was on his way home from work. We went home too.

While I nursed B, I talked Raleigh and Emma through making pizza dough. They had never used yeast before. The pizza was ready shortly after James got home and we devoured it. Swimming left us hungry and tired so we all settled down for quiet time after lunch.

We got up groggy after an hour and decided to go downtown to Cleveland Park. It was HOT. We only played for half an hour or so before we decided to head back to the pool. This time it was even more fun because we had James. Raleigh was particularly happy. We played Categories and Marco Polo.

It wasn't a late night for any of us. James made egg tacos and we all collapsed!

This morning we got up and had Lucky Charms and got the kids ready for church. Mama and Daddy picked them up at 9 and they're all coming back for lunch- a cook-out! Yay!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Treehouse, a description



Our family lives on the top (third) floor of an apartment building. We have a balcony facing a forest rather than the parking lot. Our bedroom windows face the parking lot. When we first looked at this potential home back in January or February, I was pregnant. The view out the windows was rather dull- all gray and paved. But there were branches and I knew that those branches would eventually fill up the panorama with leaves and blossoms.

Now, how cheerful it is! I go into the nursery and see so much green! And pink flowers, too! Out on the balcony, more green. And not only from the trees: James hung vines all along the railing and they do look real.

Our apartment is a two bedroom flat. There is a small kitchen and a dining/living area. The bedrooms are also small. James and I have the bigger of the two. It is decorated like a college dorm, basically. We have a duvet cover for curtains, an old hand-me-down dresser, Christmas tinsel along the ceiling, a hippie wall hanging, a couple mirrors and bulletin boards and an encouraging banner. The bed is one James had as a teenager and the comforter was one I had as a teenager. Our walk-in closet is a total wreck which I will address one of these days. All in all, our bedroom doesn’t look that “together.” It’s the only place in our home where I really let the frayed edges show. But it is comfortable and that’s what’s important.

The smaller bedroom is Beatrice’s, the nursery. It is my pride and joy. There are pink stripes going down one wall. There is a white changing table, a rocking chair, a book/clothes shelf and a crib that was my siblings’ over a decade ago. Her closet serves as our main storage space. It houses guitar cases and stuff like that. Beatrice has all of my monkeys in a basket under her window. She has my “special blanket” on her wall and her own thrown over the back of the rocking chair for quick access. Her room is all pink, white and red. So, so, so girly! (I don’t know what I’ll do if our next baby is a boy.)

The Living Room is pretty cozy. It’s all tree-house-ish. We have a brown/green sofa with a wooden trunk serving as an end table on one side and a tall wooden stool on the other with a wooden-type lamp on it. (The lampshade is one of Beatrice’s favorite things in the world to look at.) Lots of pillows. There are a couple bookshelves with all old books in them and plants on top, three guitars hanging on the wall and a brown and cream zebra striped paper lantern. There is an old-fashioned chair in the book-nook with another trunk beside it. The rug is greens and purples, the coffee table wooden. The computer area is hidden behind the bookshelves.

Our dining area has one wall painted red. I have some antique plates on that wall. There is an unfinished quilt based on a Klimt painting on the adjoining wall. My parents just gave us a table that they weren’t using. Yay!

This apartment complex isn’t the nicest, but it also isn’t the worst. It’s in a good part of town and there are a lot of trees. I’ve worked hard to make our home as comfortable as I can and there are still a lot of things I want to do… Although hopefully we’ll be able to move into a house of our very own someday!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

She's Real!



Our baby, I mean. For the past four months we’ve watched her squirm, get fat and morph into a real human being rather than the sweet little grub with the slate-gray eyes that came to us on Easter Sunday. Seeing her every day, it’s easy to overlook how much she’s changed. But when I see pictures taken from her first couple of days this side of the placenta, I’m really amazed at her progress. It’s visible everywhere, from the seemingly continual lightening of her eyes to the chubby rolls on her hyper-kicky legs. Where once was a strange little detached creature whose only means of communication was to cry or scream is now a tiny person who laughs and squeals in delight at her favorite lampshade and follows us around the room with her eyes.

From the moment we heard that first little wail our lives would never be the same. Nothing can prepare you for seeing your own offspring for the first time. Emotion has little to do with this attachment at first, although it is one of the most emotional moments of your life. These feelings are more intense than that. They’re physical. Love is unconditional for your child; she’s practically a part of your body. Her eyes are shaped like Lily’s but they’re turning blue like mine. The blood in her veins is our blood. Her drool is our drool. It’s really weird!

This miniature human being is ours. Our baby, our Beatrice. Our responsibility. And what responsibility that is! She is helpless, completely dependent upon us. We feed her, clothe her, bathe her, change her diapers. Those are the visibly obvious things. But more importantly she needs us to raise her. Providing for her is mandatory, but not nearly enough. We talk to her and sing to her. We play with her and take her everywhere with us. We acquaint her with all our friends and loved ones. We’re trying to figure out how to be the best parents we can be so that she will grow up to be a happy, well-rounded, self-sufficient woman. At the outside we’ve probably got about twenty years with her under our wings as she grows up and finds her place in the world.

And what a curious privilege it will be to witness her growth! As humans, we’re perhaps the only creatures on earth with brains developed enough to even appreciate the riveting drama that unfolds before our eyes as our children become viable. There will be so many milestones, so many hurdles to leap and bridges to cross. It’s really exciting, especially because we get to be her guides. We get to be the ones who will steer her in what we hope is the right direction and try to instill good judgment in her. It’s up to us to see that she’s educated and loved.

She’s real, alright. It doesn’t get any more real than this.
-James