January 28, 2010

Bugs Bunny

Somewhere between Christmas and now I lost the gummy smile of my little girl. I became used to looking at her one way. Eight months of her yawns, laughs, babbles, kisses, smiles that were soft and wet. Toothless. Her round plump lips. Her pink mouth.

But like all babies, her teeth were conspiring below the surface. They were building courage. They were getting ready.

She was showing all of the signs of a baby preparing for her first tooth - putting everything in her mouth, drooling. I waited for the more unpleasant signs of teething, like the crying, fever, redness on the checks. I monitored the pink tissue of her lower gums for indication that it might be coming. For swelling. I waited. I took pictures of her gummy smile, knowing that those days were limited.

Almost overnight, she sprouted her first tooth.

She woke up, smiled like she usually does, and there it was. Right in front of me. Instead of coming in on the bottom like I expected it would, like the parenting books said, it came in on top. The second, beside it to the right, was peaking out also. Her two front teeth. She looked like Bugs Bunny.

Is it silly to dedicate a post to a first tooth? Maybe. But for some reason, when she smiles at me, it's almost like a different baby. She doesn't look like a baby. She's growing up.

I know that somewhere between now and next Christmas we will go through a number of small milestones. Too small to blog about, or to write in her baby book. But all will add up to the incredible transformation of a little baby, to a little girl.

It's all conspiring below the surface.

January 18, 2010

Forever Shaken


Last week, on Tuesday, January 12th, a 7.0 earthquake hit Port-Au-Prince, Haiti.

It was said to be the most powerful earthquake to hit the country in more than 200 years. As devastating as that natural disaster was, and would be to any country, the destruction in Haiti was exasperated by the conditions. Most of Haiti's people are desperately poor, and after years of political instability, the country has no basic construction standards.

The earthquake caused a crumbled ruin of many homes from all ends of the economic spectrum. According to reports, Parliament has collapsed. The tax office has collapsed. Schools have collapsed. Hospitals have collapsed. The National Palace is a ruin, and the UN headquarters was damaged. Most of Port au Prince's two million, an estimated 1.5 million, were made homeless by last week's natural disaster. Thousands are dead.

I don't need to rehash news reports that you have likely heard a lot about. Over the past week, I have read, watched, listened to some of the same reports that you have. I have been touched by the stories of loss, the stories of fear, the stories of men, women and children, like many of you have. I have hurt for the people that are waiting for word from their loved ones, like you have. My stomach has ached for all of those who are affected by the situation, like yours have. My mind is full of "what ifs", "that could be someone close to me", "how could this happen", like surely yours is.

It's things like this that make you realize how special, how sacred, how blessful, how bountiful your life is. My life is. As a mother, I feel changed. As a mother, I am so impacted by the hurt of children. As a mother, I feel a different kind of pain than I ever have before - during any other natural disaster. I look at the innocence of my daughter, and the way she looks up at me at the ripe age of 8 months, and hurts me inside to think about losing her. I would never be strong enough to live through that. Thinking about it tears me apart.

My prayers are with everyone impacted by the earthquake in Haiti. Although I am able to turn off the news reports, shut down the computer and climb into my bed, my heart and mind is thousands of miles away. And I hold my baby girl a little bit tighter because of this. I won't forget.

~ humps

*Note: News photos from http://ca.news.yahoo.com photo slide show. All three are Reuters.

January 14, 2010

S is for Spelling

Over the last couple of weeks I have been on a mission. I have been consumed in the pursuit of finding daycare for BABY. I will be going back to work in April. While I did do some initial investigation, entered myself on a few daycare waiting lists over the summer, I now have to put this search into high gear. If I don't get her in somewhere over the next couple of months I'm screwed.

I'm sure you will hear a little bit more about the daycare issue on this blog. Like how freaking expensive it is. How I have no idea how I'm going to be able to afford it. (These places are coming in at around $300 a week for infants. Like $1200 a month!! Please don't get me started on this or I will have a breakdown.) I will probably rant for months about how I will be entrusting my precious daughter in the hands of people I don't even know. That she will spend a good 9-10 hours a day there, and see them more than she sees me. How I will likely have a breakdown during the first day, week, month. Oh my gosh, I'm gonna throw up right now. I'm feeling anxiety just thinking about this.

Ok, let me get it together.

The real reason I wanted to write this post was to ask, what's up with daycare? I am looking at homecare and daycare. I am going on tours, open houses, meeting daycare administrators, speaking with homecare agencies. Seeing advantages and disadvantages of many different options.

Not sure if I am being an overly discriminating parent, but who the hell decided that misspelling a word in the name of your daycare was cute. Or good marketing. You're suppose to teaching my child how to read and write. And meanwhile you have a sign outside of your building that reads "Skool". WTF.

So I just wanted to get that off my chest. If you operate a daycare facility with "Kampus", "Skool", "Kare", "Kollege", "Kidz", "N" instead of And, than you may want to think of rebranding. Because it just isn't Kute.

~ humps

January 4, 2010

Get Yo Shit Togetha

It's the Monday after New Years. We have just walked into a new decade. It is now 2010! I am dusting off my laptop and shaking off my carpal tunnel to officially deemed this Get-Yo-Shit-Togetha Week. Because after the holidays, surely I am not the only one who needs to get my shit together.

It's an informal poll but I can say with some certainty that 99% of the people that I know have veered off of their regular routine over the holiday season. The time spent has varied - from using up the vacation days, taking on some overtime hours, or going into work to enjoy late starts and long lunches. Or maybe you spent some time curling up with your 8 month old baby girl, watching Hugh Grant movies on cable and grazing on holiday goodies. That's cool too, I suppose.

I even let the baby run wild over the last couple of weeks. Her bedtime has gone to crap. I have to get her back on the routine.

So with this being Get-Yo-Shit-Togetha Week, I will be buckling down. I will be getting babies on routines, getting my ass of the couch, getting some housework done around here, getting my life organized and getting it done. I'm not one for New Years Resolutions but I'm a fan of breaking out the shit broom and shit bucket to pile it all up. I'm a fan of getting shit together.

I gots to go. This shit is calling my name.

~ humps
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