Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Because Caspian is taking a very long nap, I had time to write a very long post.

K. and I have had a lot of moments lately where we look at each other and say-- this is really hard. We have a new mattress, for instance, that would be really fab to take a nap together on, and on a rainy Sunday afternoon, it's rather infuriating when the kids wake up after 45 minutes.

But. They've had colds and ear infections ALL MONTH and Caspian has busted out something like FIVE teeth in the last four weeks. He literally chews on his pacifier and scrapes it across his gums so that it squeaks. I have tried teething rings, Oragel, homeopathic drops, teething tablets, and cold things to chew on, but the only thing that really helps when he's sitting there crying is Motrin. Which he can't stay on for more than 10 days, a fact that his teeth are not respecting.

It's been kind of rough. But the last two nights have been half-way decent: one wake-up per night for each-- so let's hope that the worst is behind us and I will no longer have to hold my children down to squirt saline spray up their noses.

For New Year's Eve, K. and I are having our regular sitter, a very kind and competent lady who also teaches at Annaliese's nursery school, arrive at 5:30pm and stay until 10am. We are going to spend the night in Oxford-- see a film, grab some food, SLEEP, eat a leisurely breakfast, and then come home.

Her fee for this is $75. Which I regard as ridiculously cheap, and she seems to feel is a fortune; it makes me a little sad that a woman our parents' age, who has grown children of her own, is thrilled to babysit for us at the drop of a hat because we pay $10 an hour for evenings and this new rate for overnight. This woman spends literally ten hours a day, five days a week with 4-7 toddlers and she never loses her cool. She SHOULD get paid a king's ransom.

Anyhow. I'm excited for us; this will literally be night #2 sans children since Annaliese's birth.

We discussed about what to do for the first day of 2010, and decided we'll start laying out the vegetable garden-- building beds and such, weather permitting.

This is thrilling. I want to move to France, and New Zealand, and find our forever house, but the thought of just staying here and NOT having a baby or moving or renovating a primary residence is just so... heartwarmingly peaceful. So here's to a year of being here!

Yesterday I took the truck and put both kids at school (they let Caspian drop in for the occasional day) and drove out to Yocona where I met up with Billy Ray, my favorite dairy farmer, to load up on some sweet manure. We shoveled and talked about kids and pigs and other totally engrossing subjects and then I drove into Oxford, got my truck inspected, showed proof of inspection to the judicial court (had gotten a ticket), and then took myself out to lunch, very much enjoying the fact that I had poop in the back of the truck and on my nice green wellies. I hate feeling so CITY all the time, it's good to get dirty and be out under the sky without a kid on my hip. Got my fruit trees manured before I picked them up, which made me feel like a million dollars.

By the by, the new formula-- milk, cream, water, three powders, and four oils, is going down a treat. Caspian loves it. And despite the fact that it's got cod liver oil in it, I don't blame him; took a sip and it's pretty good, what with all the milk sugar and coconut oil. I feel 100% better about it since I know the milk is as unadulterated as it gets (grass-fed, slow pasteurized, unhomogenized, no antibiotics or steroids or hormones), and so we're both happy campers.

So cross your fingers, we are all well, and making peace with our new lives as a family of four. Nuts! K, weren't you just the tall guy who made my heart beat fast?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas, the Album

So click here if you want the whole bonanza....

Really a great Christmas.

Of course, Annaliese now asks for presents whenever she walks into the living room, and I've had to explain about 18times that Nonni and Dotter (aka Mom and Eliza) had to go bye-bye on a plane, and she is coming down from three days of high-pitched excitement, but...

so nice. We missed those not with us (VT contingent!) but the velcro sushi box made up for it.
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Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

There has been gingerbread, and a church service where both children really behaved quite well, and our second year of fondue on Christmas Eve. There has been a passable amount of sleep and a new front tooth (I think) and two-year-old kisses.

(There has ALSO been a checkers game that almost sent my sister into insanity, a toddler meltdown, and 2 days of rain.)

We're loving Christmas with our two babies and a nonni and an aunt. There are five pies on the counter and plans for a roast and bacon-wrapped quail.

Be merry and well!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

teeny weeny update

Children update:

Caspian's on a strict schedule approved by his pediatrician and I'm hoping the night wakings will decrease soon (we're already down to 1!). Since we are also down to one nurse a day, I'm also going to start making him homemade formula as according to the Weston A. Price FOundation, which will save us zero dollars and cost us mucho but I trust the ingredients much more than Nestle. He's also got six teeth!

Annaliese is talking, talking, and we're letting her stay up until almost 8, after the usual dinner-bathtime routine, and she loves it. Our favorite time of day with her.


K's on vacay and growing out his beard. We're enjoying our super-comfy new mattress and wishing we had more time to cuddle together on it. There's a lot of teasing, we both have books we're into, and tonight we're going to his company's Christmas party.

Bigger thoughts later.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Winter weekend

Really pleasant, even though we didn't do anything all that thrilling. Didn't hire a babysitter. Pretty sure I got in bed at 8 or so on Friday. It's been raining.


Before church... on time for once, and Caspian's first time in nursery! They both did great.

This afternoon, researching cookie recipes.

And at some point these two young uns end up close to eachother, somehow, someway. Even if Annaliese steals all his toys.

Good night all.
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Tuesday, December 08, 2009

There are times -- read every night, or in the late afternoon when both children are wailing -- that I sometimes think "this is ridiculous. Two children under the age of two = ridiculous."

What makes you ready to have a second child?

Annaliese, as we all know, was not an easy baby. And yet we just didn't feel... done, not even for a few years, and so when she was eight months old... we made another. (And yeah, he was planned. Just it took about five minutes instead of the few months we expected.)

And two children 17 months apart IS ridiculous. I was pregnant two New Year's Eves in a row! I had a baby when I was 25 AND 26! The first time Annaliese ever said baby is when I had one!

But the entire time, it has seemed like the right road to take. Not the easy road or the logical road, but simply the one fated for me. And now Caspian is here and it feels entirely right, like "oh, here you are at last. Now Mama can take a break."

We have decided not to talk about having more children for a few years. Mainly because I get semi-hysterical whenever the topic comes up and say NEVER AGAIN, WE'RE DONE, WE'RE FINITO, I HATE BABIES. And K's all like, you know what? Don't get pregnant. And I'm all like ROGER FRICKING THAT.

But I am so glad Caspian is with us. And that the first six months.... those boring, the baby can't do anything months, are over. He's just about sitting up by himself now, and this-- THIS-- is when it starts getting interesting. In another six months, if he tracks anything like his sister, it's probable that he will

learn to move and maybe walk (Annaliese walked at 11 months)

learn to feed himself solid food and get weaned

and maybe even say Mama. Though Annaliese's first word was definitely Dog.


Now, for a quick series of Annaliese stories:

Last night in the bathroom K called me by my name. And Annaliese was all like "Lex-ie!"

And I said, "child, I did not bring you into this world to call me my name. I'm Mommy."

And she said, "Lex-ie!" again with great delight.

We now have a Time Out chair. It is not working. This morning, Annaliese woke up and asked to sit in it.

I asked Annaliese what she wanted for Christmas and she said "Christmas tree!" So K put one up in the living room and one on the porch and they are both "Daddy trees!" with "lights!"

When Caspian and Annaliese grin like maniacs and giggle at each other, which they do about every day, I am not allowed to look. Today I was reading and looked up to beam at my cute children. Annaliese picked up a finger, ointed it at me, and said, "NO, Mommy, NO. READ BOOK." And as soon as I looked away, she was back making googly eyes with Caspian.

Alright. Can't believe I'm awake after ten. Night all.
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Winter Is Here

Fair enough, it is December. But I am not super excited about the high of 45 and low of 25 tomorrow. My trees have lost all their leaves, and are once again sticks, albeit this year in need of pruning. I have a whole schedule that I hope to stick to... dormant oil in late winter, pruning, manuring, weed clean-up, etc. I do love my trees.

The chickens are keeping us in eggs-- 3-5 per day from 6 laying hens, so that's pretty fab.

And the children... ah, the children.

Annaliese is all better. Caspian started coughing and snotting this weekend though, and his front tooth is trying so hard to break through...his whole gum is purple and swollen, incredibly painful-looking. Then when we took him for his check-up yesterday we discovered...

1. He's a hair under 20 lbs, 85% weight.
2. He's grown an inch every month he's been alive, making him 95% height.
3. And the poor little guy has infections in BOTH ears, along with the cold and the teeth. And still he's relatively cheerful!

What a champ!

We have our Christmas tree up. Annaliese loves it, and every time she walks into the living room, she says "Christmas tree!" with complete delight. Kagan put another tree up on the porch as decoration, kitted out with lights, and that's "Papa's tree!"

My mother and sister arrive in 2 weeks. I've got a chapter goal so I can take the last two weeks of Dec off, and so blogging might be sparse.

But all is well. I love this time of the, presents, food, rinse and repeat.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Ear infection, folks. Things are on the up-and-up.

Caspian turned 6 months today. Which I will wax over at a later point. Right now... I am going to go feed him and crawl into bed, hoping to sleep until at least 2am thereafter.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Annaliese is sick :(

Which, apart from the fact that whenever she is ill I worry that she may die, is really crappy for 2 reasons:

1-- she can't go to school, meaning I can't do anything all day except wipe her nose and make her meals that she won't eat and will smear on the floor.

2-- she can't sleep. I hear tale tell of these kids who zonk out when ill, watching movies and taking long naps, but Annaliese is more like the cough, cry, stand, scream, toss, turn, rinse and repeat every fifteen minutes, all night long.

And of course Caspian's teething has died down and he's gone to bed at 6:30, gotten fed by K at 10 and me at 2:30, for the last three nights, meaning we actually have a shot at 5+ hours of uninterrupted sleep if Annaliese was well.


What I do feel blessed about is that I can generally juggle whatever commitments I have when Annaliese falls ill without any professional repercussions. That is very nice, and I don't know what two parents with high-powered careers do when they've both got deadlines and meetings and a kid gets the flu.