Dvorak playing. String quartet no. 14 in A flat major.
It's a grey day and I'm tired, tired, tired. Pea finally slept more like her normal 13-hour self last night, and she's down for a nap and so I should be sleeping too. But I'm so far beyond tired from this last week that I can't--I'm wide-awake and exhausted.
This morning Pea looked up at the picture from our 13-wk ultrasound and said, "Bebe Lollie". She wants to read her book about being a big sister constantly, and tells me over and over again, in her little broken phrases, that's she's going to help feed him and "wock" him and change his "diper on boddom".
I don't have much on my list for today, so I should be attacking that since I'm not sleeping. I have a couple of plants that I very nearly killed while indoors this winter (I can kill anything in a pot, it seems) and they need transplanted. I know it's still a bit early, but they're the sort of plants that are usually nearly impossible to kill (I'm not saying what they are) and it's either give them half a chance at life out of doors, or just put them out of their misery. Poor things. I'm much better with babies, thank goodness.
We have a wedding to go to tomorrow. I'm hoping that a certain pair of black pants will still fit me as my regular pants are just now too tight and all the nice things I still have from last time are HUGE on me. I started the last pregnancy weighing a good 15 pounds more than I did this time, but apparently in my world 15 pounds equals a good 2 sizes because they look like clown pants. On the one hand it's rather nice to go into this one feeling really good about myself. On the other hand, it's more freakin' stuff to buy and there's already a lot of other stuff I've decided I need/want before this baby comes so I would rather be able to just wear what I already have. Last week my belly popped and things are changing on a daily basis. I have a cute shirt to wear tomorrow--hopefully the pants will work. I can always pull out the Bella Band, I just don't love the way it feels (like a girdle!)
It's starting to look like rain. Sometimes I like the rain, you know. I've lived here for so long that too many sunny days in a row this time of year makes me antsy. The last few days have been gorgeous, but it's time for a change.
I should put some sauce on to simmer away for dinner...
It's girl's night tonight. I wish you all could meet these ladies--funny, smart, frank, opinionated, kind, and did I mention funny? As tired as I am, I know it will be just the ticket.
I need to clean out my fridge. How we manage to collect condiments like they can be traded for gold bouillon I do not know. But collect away we do. And it could use a really good wiping-down, too. If I clean it out, though, then I'll have to take out the trash. I don't want to take out the trash right now.
Turkey in any and every form continues to be loathsome to me.
The pasta sauce is begun. The house feels homier when food is bubbling on the stove. I just turned the fireplace on, too. It's cold all of a sudden. Yesterday I had the windows open...
I don't think I've washed my face yet today. It's been that sort of day. I've always been able to at least do that--what's going to happen to me with a toddler and a squalling baby? Things could really fall apart. Oh god...
I should go put away all the clean laundry I did yesterday.
Sounds like Pea is waking...
Dvorak playing. String quartet no. 14 in A flat major.
This is what she does when you ask her to smile--so funny.
I don't seem to have any pictures from the rest of that day, but we had Jeffrey's parents over for a special Valentine's Day dinner and I made pan-fried chicken with a Parmesan/pine-nut/lemon rind coating, twice-baked potatoes with buttermilk and fresh herbs, and a green salad. Dessert was vanilla ice-cream with really good (albeit store-bought) chocolate fudge sauce and strawberries. Alas, the berries were the kind you find in the freezer section, as I refuse to buy fresh before they're in season, but they were actually pretty good.
Our good friend from Seattle was in town a couple of weeks ago. We hadn't seen her in maybe 4 years, not since a few months after our wedding. She got to meet Penelope, we got to meet her fiance (he proposed in New Zealand over Christmas--how romantic is that?), and we got to share lunch and a few hours together.
It was a lovely afternoon.
One of my favorite soups to make. For some reason I don't have a photo of the finished product yet (a theme emerges), but it starts out like this (leeks, potatoes, butternut squash), gets pureed, and then gets a good splash of half and half. It's simple and warming and perfect with Gruyere toasts or a nice plate of fruit and cheese.
The lasagna I made for my mother's birthday. Again, I don't have a picture of the final product (because we were far too busy eating it!) but just about anything with Bechamel is good in my book.
And here is the carrot cake my sister made. The recipe is reprinted here, on another blog, and you have to believe me when I say that it is hands-down the best carrot cake you will ever try. Easy to make, too.
German pancakes for breakfast the other day. They have been a favorite since I was little (we often had them for our birthdays) and Penelope loves to help make and eat them.
They smell so, so good when they're cooking. Here's my family's recipe:
Oven 475 degrees
Whisk together in glass or metal mixing bowl (I don't know why, just tastes better when you do)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour (I like King Arthur)
1/2 cup milk
When smooth, add two eggs and a good splash of good (or at least relatively fresh) vanilla
Whisk again till smooth
When oven has heated, put 2 TBSP butter in a glass Pyrex (or similar) pie dish and place in oven to melt and heat dish. When butter is bubbling, pour pancake batter into dish, return dish to oven, and set timer for 15 minutes.
Serve any way you like: fruit, real maple syrup, fresh lemons and powdered sugar... We like real maple syrup or low-sugar jam.
Quinoa salad with baby heirloom tomatoes, basil, fresh mozzarella, shallots and olive oil. My attempt at copying Andrea's just by memory (I added some red wine vinegar, too...)
This one I didn't make, but a favorite all the same. And oh man, if I could make this just how large would I be? The best Eggs Benedict in town. With pepper-bacon and tomatoes, though they also make one with filet steak and Bearnaise sauce that's killer (literally, I'm sure). I think food heaven would be an endless buffet of Eggs Benedict and biscuits and gravy, the good kind of gravy with lots of crispy sausage and a slug of Tabasco.
I've been craving biscuits and gravy all day--I think I know what I'm doing Saturday morning...
It's been a few days--let's see...
Last week we had some new friends over for lunch and play and we had such a good time. Penelope keeps talking about "Een" (Ian) and wanting me to show her the pictures of him and his adorable baby brother on his mama's blog. (I tried my best to copy the salad you brought, Andrea, and I think I almost got it... it just didn't taste as good as yours!) Coffee, good food, good conversation, kids running and crawling around... it was exactly what we needed.
Pea is just at the point where I'm realizing that being around other kids her age is actually a very good thing, as the territorial instincts are beginning to take hold. I know it's largely developmental, part of the age she is, but I'm seeing that she can use some pretty regular exercises in learning to share and just generally work things out with others. I tend to think that issues of same-age socialization are largely imaginary phobias of the over-educated and under-life-experienced. Pea has been around lots of people of varying ages her whole life and I think that's healthier than always being around ones own age--I think that can negatively affect ones vocabulary, language skills, desire to question and learn, etc. There are, of course, things to be learned from a similar age and skill level and I think Pea's at the point where this is actually meaningful.
Jeffrey returned yesterday from a conference in Vegas. He stayed at the Venetian and his horrible night in an otherwise beautiful and helpful hotel is documented here.
I discovered all over again that I do not like being a single parent. As much as I arranged for us to stay nice and busy in his absence, it was the nights that got me--the near inability to sleep for fear I wouldn't wake up if she did and no one else to fall back on. And Jeffrey hears Pea the moment before she cries. I can't top that, sadly...
Pea had two horrible nights' sleep and one good one while he was gone. She's normally a great sleeper, all my fears to the contrary, and yet for two nights she kept waking up and asking to hear about "Daddoo on pane, in sky". I'm feeling the effects, for sure, and pregnancy compounds them. I've been so lucky to have a first child who put herself on a 3-4 hour sleep schedule from the second week of her life and then quickly and easily transitioned to full nights at only a few months. I thrive on a certain amount of order and routine, and so varying schedules and hours and times of sleep make me feel completely chaotic and out of control and I become impatient with her and easily irritated.
Saturday night was my mom's birthday party. A lasagna invention, Caesar salad and then a huge, three-layer carrot cake. All homemade, of course. The lasagna was an invention because my mother wanted one but didn't want it too chewy with cheese, though she did want a classic sauce. So I combined a couple of recipes and came up with one that was layers of good pasta, whole-milk ricotta mixed with fresh basil, red sauce with lots of tomato chunks and tender meat and onions and herbs, an outstanding bechamel my brother expertly made, and then a final topping of good Parmesan (shredded). I would tweak it just a bit next time, but overall I thought it turned out really well. And the cake. The cake... Well, the cake is probably the best carrot cake recipe known to man and was really tender and full of coconut, nuts, carrots, raisins, pineapple, and spices. We just about had to roll ourselves around the rest of the evening, we were so full of good food.
Pea hasn't let Jeffrey out of her sight since he's been home. The poor, tired man is back to his normal role as human jungle gym, but he's a good daddoo and a trooper. After we picked him up at the airport, the three of us went to lunch at an Italian cafe downtown, where I ordered far too much food as I was suddenly starving, and then to the park, where Pea ran and slid and swung and raced up the biggest slide over and over and over.
I am not the sort of mom who requires her children to only go down the slide. Isn't the whole point of childhood learning to think outside the lines? You wouldn't think so, listening to the other moms on the playground...
The pregnancy hunger has suddenly hit. Yesterday I felt like I was going to die if I didn't keep eating. Starting in the morning, I ate a big bowl of yogurt, whole-grain toast, cheese, one and a third chicken Caesar salads, pasta with marinara, a big bowl of fresh fruit, two big pieces of chicken with couscous, fresh veggies and hummus, half a slice of leftover carrot cake, some leftover quinoa/tomato/basil/mozzarella salad, and glass after glass of water full of fresh lemon slices. Today the intake was more moderate. (I know--thank goodness.) The good news is that so far I have maybe gained 2 pounds in 4.5 months of pregnancy. I was just looking through some photos of when I was pregnant with Pea, and at this point I was already looking very, very, VERY pregnant. It's funny how every time can be so different.
More later. And pictures--I'm way behind on loading to Flickr but tonight I should be caught up...
Posted by Annagrace at 6:40 PM
Rained last night, the first time in months that it was warm enough to smell the ozone. Woke up to grey skies that felt cold again. It is February after all.
I prefer to spell grey with an "e", not with an "a". Even though spell check will always give me grief.
My friend K.'s house cleaners came again. To have people show up, first thing in the morning when you've just had breakfast and still have your pajamas on, and see them armed with brushes and mops and vacuum and feather dusters and their coffee cups and they're smiling, and then have them leave almost 2 hours later with everything in the house (including the inside of the microwave and the electric toothbrush stand!) sparkling and fresh-smelling... well THAT, my friends, is just about the best thing I've ever experienced. I'm seriously considering having them stay on, once the gifting is done. But I'm a tiny bit scared to ask what they charge--they're so good.
Pea and I went out to the shops and got most of the groceries and dry goods we need. I wish I was one of the one-stop-shopping types, but since I try to feed us as whole and naturally as I can on my SAH mama budget, the natural-foods store only takes me so far but the big-box store only takes me so far. Pea is a great shopping companion--as long as I keep the cart moving and don't spend too long in one place she can almost go all day.
Of course, as soon as we were on our way out the sun came out and the day became even warmer than yesterday. Oh well, spring is coming.
I am currently trying to convince the girl that today's nap should be longer than half an hour. I know--I ask a lot of her.
I'm eating my way through a bowl of chili-lime pistachios and they are SO good and SO spicy.
There's a man out back finally putting up a fence around the water-containment/concession-to-wetlands ditch that borders our property. It's ugly cyclone fencing but it also means that we don't have to pay for one quarter of a fence, and I will run honeysuckle and clematis all over it next year and it's ugliness will go down by at least half.
At Target we ran into someone I haven't seen in probably 5 years. We worked together at an upper-scale department store for a couple of years, in neighboring departments (I was in cosmetics and he was in menswear of some sort) and we both had a cynical view of the upper management. It was so random--I had honestly almost completely forgotten about him. But I turned the corner and there he was. And there I was, one child in the cart and another on the way and a house in the 'burbs...life goes by so fast.
Pea is up. I gave in as we have one more errand to run before dinner. She's digging into the pistachios like they're the best thing she's ever tasted. Did I mention that they are SPICY? Apparently I didn't crave spicy Thai food with her for nothing.
Today has been a constant repetition of: "up, don (down), in, ote (out), opin, sut (shut), ott (off), on."
Tonight I'm making big taco salads for dinner.
I'm craving lemons.
Posted by Annagrace at 3:20 PM
It feels like spring here--early spring. Tiny flowers, the sound of birds, sunlight that has some warmth to it, different colors at sunset, a certain green-ness to the air...
Pea continues to grow like a well-watered plant--tall and strong and constantly jumping ("dumping!") and running and dancing ("datting!") and singing ("tinging!"). Jeffrey says that her eyes are changing to look more like mine, though they're still deep chocolaty brown.
The window is open and I can hear the neighbor's phone from inside their open garage. It's always open for their elderly cat, I'm pretty sure. And far off, the whistle of a train. I must always live where I can hear trains.
Pea is sleeping, curled up with at least half of her babies and animals which must always be put under the covers along with herself. She feels strongly about those she loves keeping warm, apparently.
I've planned this week's menu and made the corresponding shopping list. I was going to go out and get it done today, as is usual, but it was too nice outside to be tramping down artificially lit aisles. So we went to the park with the best playground and then to the coffee shop and got home just as it was really and truly clouding over. Perfect. We have lots of leftover food from the weekend, anyhow.
When I was reading to Pea before her nap, I laid down on my stomach on the floor beside her (she was doing the same) and suddenly realized I was feeling the baby kick, for real, for sure, for the first time.
I have a friend who is going through a really hard situation, which will end in divorce. The unfortunate truth is that it needs to end this way. I'm still getting to know her but I think about her constantly and pray the best way I know how--sending thoughts of peace and hope, being available, telling the truth, and trying to trust that god will keep her safe and give her grace.
We found out yesterday that our good friends, who are 2.5 wks farther along than we are, are having a baby girl. I think I'm almost as excited as they are--I've loved every second of having a girl.
We find out our baby's gender in a few short weeks. Almost everyone has money on boy. Which is good since I'm already referring to my belly as Baby Ollie.
I have a huge list of things to do over the next 4 months, but I'm starting to be at peace with where things are at. These are my last few months with one child, just with Pea, and I don't want to lose a minute of it over some silly list. The new baby won't know or care whether or not his room is perfectly ready or whether the home he's born into is perfectly organized--but he can already pick up on my moods or stress level. And I will so miss the one-on-one time with Pea...
Pea is waking up. There's one more load for the wash and dinner to make. I think I might get a pedicure tonight...
Posted by Annagrace at 4:10 PM
I haven't written you a letter in a long time, baby, and today seemed like a good day to catch up, since today is a today when people all over the world will be exchanging little notes and love letters. And chocolate too, which just might be your very favorite thing. Besides raisins. And cheese.
Where do I even begin? The last few months have been really difficult, and I know that you were really worried when Mama was so sick, even though your Daddoo and I tried so hard to talk about what was going on and how everything was going to be okay. I missed so much our days together, all the silly normal stuff we do, like going to the grocery store and hearing you point out all the items you know and taking walks, you jumping in every puddle you can find and imitating every bird and cat and squirrel that crosses our path.
I missed the daily getting to know you, seeing who you are each morning and the excitement of every new, funny thing you do.
I missed being able to hold you. I had never thought that I would ever NOT be able to do that and it was the worst part. Every morning when your Daddoo would bring you in to see me, before he would (maybe) be off to work and your uncle or auntie or Grammi would be over to get you, you were so happy to see me and so obviously relieved that you would cover my head in kisses and say my name in this relieved voice like you were worried that I would still be there when you woke up, and some days those stray minutes of time with you and your sweet jabber were all that got me through. You still talk about Mama's tummy being "lick" (sick) and "ouch", and sometimes I catch you looking at me like you're still a little worried, but I'm so glad that every day the memory of this time is fading into past tense...
And look at you now, kid, you're 21 months old now, and still so tall and agile for your age. You can jump off of almost anything and practice your skills constantly--fortunately, you haven't tried anything taller than a foot in height, but it won't be long I'm afraid. You can feed yourself perfectly and precisely and you're definitely going to be left-handed--which makes me happy as I particularly like non-conformists...
You know almost all your letters and can sing parts of the alphabet song. You know all your numbers through 9 and already like counting anything and everything. You know how to say all kinds of colors and your favorite has recently changed from red to pink. You love trains and airplanes and cry broken-hearted tears when I won't let you drive Mama's car, but you also love to play dress-up and pretend to put on make-up ("mackup").
I love the way you look when you wake up and the way you have to have your music "lout!" to fall asleep.
You love your babies and love to discuss the baby in Mama's tummy, and you love to show our first ultrasound photo to anyone and everyone visiting. We talk a lot about the new baby, and how it's going to be your baby too and how you're still going to be my baby and my Pea. You get very serious about this, but seem to be understanding a lot more than you can verbalize.
My favorite words of yours (but there are so many!) are "manedoh" (mango), "eck" (egg), "tink/tinking" (think/thinking, always said with finger to lips), "bikakle" (bicycle), "thtop" (stop), "coln" (cold), and "rahrap" (raisins). And "moot" (move) and "okeye" (okay). Your daddoo and I love nothing more than hearing you say new words and I'm sorry that some of them have made us laugh so hard...
When we're out driving and we come to a red light you say, "thtop, dog, thtop!" and at the green lights, "do (go), dog, do!" With frantic hand motions.
You are starting to have an interest in all things bathroom related, and just recently you have used your new potty twice. And then stood up and cheered for yourself.
When you're done singing or dancing or banging on your drum or tambourine, you always take a bow.
The world is going to hear from you, kid, and when they do I will be the first one cheering you on. You have such a tender little heart and such a bright, precise little mind, and I am so very, very happy to be back into life with you. Being your Mama is the hardest and most emotional and happiest and most rewarding thing I've ever been or done.
Happy Valentine's Day, Baby.
Posted by Annagrace at 8:02 AM
It's late and I'm sitting in bed next to my husband who is working very hard (as usual) on Very Important Things for his pediatric clinic clients. This same man just bought me a very nice present which arrived in the mail two days ago and upon which I am writing. A shiny new laptop in my favorite color of green...
It's not this one exactly, but this is the closest I could get to the color without actually taking out my camera and it's late and I'm far too lazy at present. Isn't he good to me? Now I can actually go somewhere and write, which will be so very nice when I have two babies and NO time to myself (down from ALMOST no time) during the day. And honestly, the evenings can be so full of tidying and laundry and cleaning the kitchen and trying to catch up with Jeffrey that the only way to keep my mind off Things to be Done is if I leave it all for a couple of hours.
I'm listening to some great jazz, my tummy is happily full of chicken stew, crispy salad, bread and chocolate...I should have taken pictures. Tonight's dinner, though, wasn't as photogenic as it was good. And our good friends D and K came over and shared it with us which made it all taste even better. I love cooking for people. Not in a show-off way, just because I love the nurturing and community aspects of feeding and sharing and sitting around a table with people who are dear to me.
I REALLY should have taken pictures earlier, when my dear far-away friend Cristina met me for lunch and met Miss Pea for the very first time. I can't believe I left my camera at home when I haven't seen her for 5 years but such is my brain these days. We had such a good time and my brother came too and we all went to our favorite breakfast/lunch place. Pea was incredibly well-behaved, which was particularly nice since yesterday and today have been full of whiny, mewling sounds that make my toes curl up inside my shoes. Cris looks amazing, especially considering she had 3 kids in 3 years and currently has a 1, almost-3, and almost-4 year-old. If that were me I wouldn't have any hair--anywhere. But truly--I felt like it was just yesterday that I'd seen her and it felt so natural to just pick up where we left off years ago, except now we're nearing the other side of 30 and we're mamas and we're both married and we both own big, scary things like houses (she's built an incredible house in Alaska) and we're not the size-4, baby-faced young things we used to be. She's an amazing mama and I'm more proud of her than I can ever really say.
Let's see...what else? Oh yes, my car decided to throw a fit yesterday. Let me just say that this is NOT in the plan right now. Pea and I were across the river when it started acted strangely, and I don't think I've ever driven home that fast with my child in the car. We made it ok but it's now at the shop and we shall see what we shall see. We've been literally begging my car to make it till summertime, when it seems like we'll be in a better place to think about a second major purchase in one year (the house) and now with a new baby coming and Jeffrey already working more than almost anyone else I know it's a leetle bit stressful around here right now. I know that everything will work out in the end, it always does, but I've been praying for exactly a year that Jeffrey and I would get a break, some time to just rest and recover from everything that's been going on. But the past 12 months have been one major emotional/physical/financial thing after another. Wonder what the big cosmic plan in all of this is...? I was reading today that listening to our life is an important part of prayer, that there are messages for us in the most mundane and dramatic events, and I'm trying to stay present and find these messages.
And last of all, here I am at 16 weeks pregnant. I'm now 17 weeks but I haven't had a chance to post it till now.
Just starting to show. And yes, I look a little haggard here, but that's what I start looking like around 8pm these days. Like I really am done for the day. Just three more weeks or so till we get to find out who this little person is. Is it Oliver? Or is it Adelaide? My good friend Jessica, who I'm pretty sure knows me better than anyone, is betting on boy, as is Cristina. This time around neither Jeffrey nor I have had dreams yet, so it feels a lot different than with Penelope, when we knew from the very beginning...
And yes, I just told you our names so be nice.
Posted by Annagrace at 9:39 PM
Every morning when I ask Pea what she wants to do, she says "cook! cook!" So we've been doing a LOT more baking than I ever do. Baking usually stresses me out, since it requires a certain amount of precision, something I enjoy when I'm painting but not when I'm in the kitchen. But baking with her is so much fun, since every single ingredient has to be named and tasted (or kept out of reach to avoid being tasted, i.e. raw eggs) and it's safer than having her help me cook at our gas stove. She's already got a nice technique for breaking eggs, loves to unwrap sticks of butter (and lick them when she thinks I'm not looking), and does a great job at helping me measure dry ingredients. Everything I bring out of the pantry is greeted with loud cries of "yaaaay! talt! (salt)" or "yaaaay! chocadidit! (chocolate). When I bring out the muffin pans it's "yaaaaay! munnins!"
And then there's this face:
Hello, my not-forgotten bloggy friends. I mean those that haven't given up on me yet (all 3 of you.) Just when I thought that life was evening out and that the horrible, awful, no-good, very bad end of the year was just that, ending, the bad began again. And in the grand scheme of things, of life, it's all really nothing worth complaining very much about, but I'm afraid that I just haven't had it in me to blog in the midst of it. You would have stopped reading this even if I had, trust me--it would have just been boring entries of endless sickness and being cooped up at home and trying not to go nuts and the awful flu and trying to keep the house from falling to pieces and looking like a sick ward and all the rain, rain, rain outside and continuing severe morning/all day sickenss and not even having the energy to reply to emails or sometimes even pick up the phone. And then all kinds of shit went down with some of our friends--family issues, sickness, theft, etc. It's been a full month, kids. January began so very hopefully, turned dark ,and then ended on a much brighter note.
I had a sort of health relapse the first week in and had to go back to bed and start the whole process over of finding care for Pea, deal with severe internal pain, watch Jeffrey's work load (which had just started to look manageable again after all the time he had to take off in December to help me) grow and grow and his stress level grow and grow, and just generally fight depression over how difficult and frustrating the first part of this pregnancy has been for me. I finally dragged myself to the naturopath in person, instead of just discussing things over the phone with her, and after a long and very detailed appointment, a huge shot of Vitamin B6 and two sheets of paper full of solutions for my nausea, pain, inability to eat or really have any other bodily function, I started feeling hopeful again. Then Jeffrey and I went to see our midwives and even though I was 12 weeks along they could hardly detect a heartbeat. So down plummeted my heart, even though all my other signs were good and Pea's heartbeat was hard to find till 13, 14 weeks (we make sneaky babies). But never fear, they said, we'll just send you downstairs to ultrasound and do an early one to locate heartbeat. My stomach muscles relaxed. But ultrasound, which apparently ALWAYS has an opening same-day, was inexplicably full. For a week.
At 13 weeks we finally heard, and saw, a strong heartbeat, about 145 bpm. When I looked up at the huge screen a real, live, kicking, tumbling baby came into view. Seriously--that kid was flipping over and over and over and over. And the first thought that came into my head was, "that's a baby boy". I guess in 4 weeks we will see about that. We nearly didn't ask to find out with Pea because we were so sure that she was a girl. We also found out that I was measuring at exactly 13 weeks (even though we adult humans seem to know so little about these things) and the baby looked fine. Honestly, I have mixed thoughts about early and largely unnecessary ultrasounds, and really just unnecessary medical procedures in general. But after being so very, very ill for so long and being unable to eat for so long I was so worried about the baby, and just being able to see that little body, the size of a fig, turning and tumbling and dancing about, was incredibly calming. I felt hopeful again.
And then Jeffrey got the flu. The bad gastro-enteritis kind that's technically not even the flu but causes great stomach pain and distress (amongst other things...) He'd been really lucky to not catch it in December, when I'd gotten a bad strain of the virus, but most of his clients are pediatric clinics full of sick children and the doctors that treat them and one day he suddenly felt like he needed to come home early. And then he got violently ill. I think a lot of it was how tired and overworked he's been the past couple of months, that his immune system just decided it needed a break too. That was a Wednesday. That weekend I got a bad cold and sore throat so once again Penelope got shipped off to her Auntie's and Grammi's. It was so hard to have her gone for a weekend when I was just starting to get used to having full weeks with her again, but we really did NOT want her to get what Jeffrey had and I was completely shot.
Penelope came down with a cold the next week but so far she's managed to avoid any terrible viruses. Fingers crossed and lots of probiotics and vitamins, believe me. She is, however, finally getting those 2-yr molars we we've been expecting off and on for months. The first one popped through Monday of this week and another one should show itself any day now. This kid is such a trooper--it takes a long time for her to complain about anything or show that she's in pain and she's hardly been sick at all the whole 21 months of her life.
The last week has just been an exercise in regaining some form of normal. Cooking dinners, cleaning, finally catching up on a month's worth of email (I'm a bad friend, obviously), trying to see friends and get Pea out of the house a bit, regular showers, baking cookies and muffins and biscuits with Pea (who loves to cook more than ANYTHING right now) and trying to write down all the funny words she's saying all of a sudden. Her vocabulary is completely out of control as of a week or two ago--it's amazing to finally hear so much of what's going on in her head and constantly.
My good friend Karen is loaning me her amazing house cleaners for a few weeks and I can't say enough about what it's like to have two people spend 2.5 hours scrubbing your bathrooms and kitchen and making the beds and detail-cleaning the toaster and toothbrush holders, all the while you're sitting on the couch having tea with your friend. It makes me feel like I'll actually be able to get to all the other things I need to do before this next baby comes. The nesting instinct has kicked in really early this time around, and it has really sucked to be feeling all of those nest-y feelings and be confined to my bed. I have a closet to organize, a garage to order, a playroom to set-up, ideas for our big, empty downstairs hall, art to find for the half-finished living room, pillows to sew, and all kinds of things I want to make for the baby... I am convinced that all of you mamas who manage to do all these sorts of things in the space of a week (according to your blogs, anyway) either require 2 hours of sleep a night, are taking your children's ADD meds, or can handle a far messier house than I can. If my house doesn't feel at the very least tidy I can't get anything done. I wish I could handle more chaos but I need order to feel at rest in my soul. Call it control issues, I don't care.
So that's the big 'ol update. Can't wait to finally catch up on all of your blogs and rescue my sitemeter from its near-death experience. I'm back to blogging more regularly, promise. And to those of you who have asked, yes, we have two first names picked out, boy and girl, and no we really don't care what anyone thinks about said names because we're the people who named our first daughter Penelope Aoife and after all the strange and strained looks from family and not-so-close friends, people everywhere now tell us that she has an amazing name that perfectly matches her personality. So there. We will make final decisions on the middle name once we know what we are having.
There's a lot about to go on this month--old friends in town whom we haven't seen in years, a 17-wk prenatal appt which feels really exciting, being involved again in our little (but amazing) church, finally seeing and catching up with so many friends, a family birthday, election primary results and hope, and of course a closet to organize and a garage to order. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world that the worst sort of disaster to occur in my family this year is treatable sickness and the odd family thing...
Posted by Annagrace at 10:27 PM