Friday, December 26, 2014

Seven Quick Takes on the Feast of Stephen

Remember how I mentioned last week that Tad and I were sick with a stomach bug? Well, Scott got a mild version of that, and then he got a head cold of doom and spent yesterday (Christmas) lying around being miserable. He's spent most of the last few days doing that, actually, but yesterday was the worst.

To make our week even more interesting, our car refused to start on Sunday. My mom came down Monday afternoon and we were able to get it towed and do some last-minute Christmas shopping. On Tuesday morning the car repair people called back to say, hey, they don't think anything is wrong with the car at all, they think the microchips in the key have just degraded so the car no longer recognizes it. Sure enough, I walked down there with our spare key and the car was all better.

Why car keys have microchips in them I will never know.

In the middle of the car fiasco, Tad learned how to pry those little plastic outlet covers off the outlets. He likes to slobber all over them and then attempt to stick them back in. Yeah.... 

We used packing tape to tape them down. He was very upset when he first discovered our betrayal, but now he ignores the outlets. Probably he's busy plotting how to get the tape off.

Then on Tuesday night there were two different occasions when Scott and I both saw Tad walk about a dozen steps at a time. The second time he was even bold enough to attempt to walk across the open living room. (He obviously didn't make it all the way.) Until that point he had limited himself to walking close to a wall or piece of furniture, so he could reach out and steady himself if he wanted to.

He hasn't repeated the feat since, but I'm guessing he's going to keep making these little leaps and be walking proficiently before we know it.

Somewhere in there, I read a blog post at Melanie's that mentioned moms having hobbies or something like that; I'm a little fuzzy on the details. The upshot was that I decided I needed to start writing again or I was going to explode in a giant ball of stress.

So I did. So far it's just been posts over at my Sims blog, which seems completely dumb and pointless, but hey, I'm writing! I can set a goal and achieve it (maybe) and not have it undone by a rampaging baby 5 minutes later! (Provided I don't let him pound on my keyboard and accidentally delete everything.) Maybe someday I'll get enough sleep to attempt a novel again.

Tad and I went to Mass at 3 p.m. Christmas Eve. That would not have been my preference, but Scott was sick and I didn't want to attempt Midnight Mass solo with a toddler. Plus, with all the crazy things we'd had going on, I didn't want to put off Mass any longer than absolutely necessary lest something happen to prevent our going later.

We sat in the cry room because by the time we got there it was the only place with seating, but Tad was actually quiet as a church mouse pretty much the entire time. He spent a good 45 minutes just standing there holding my skirt and taking everything in, and then he nursed a bit, and then he chewed up a bulletin, and then he did fuss because I realized he wasn't just crinkling the bulletin in his hands and took it away and fished the soggy bits out of his mouth. But that was during the closing hymn so his fussing was hardly disruptive.

Tad was still fussy when we got home (at about 4:45) so I lay down with him to nurse and woke up around 6:00. Oops. I figured we were sunk at that point anyway so I let him sleep until he woke up naturally at around 6:45.

Sure enough, he stayed up until about 12:15 (waiting for Santa?), but slept in until after 9 a.m. the next morning. So we had present-opening at about 10 a.m. and lazed around the rest of the day.

I convinced Tad to model our new sling by letting him hold his car.
Tad got four presents and that was honestly too many; three would have been better. I had to persuade him pretty hard to get him to open the fourth one. It ended up being worth it, though, since he is now OBSESSED with the toy vehicles my siblings got for him.

His other presents were some books, a set of plates and bowls (I was having a Montessori moment--I need to get him open cups too, but Wal-Mart didn't have those), and an Oball. Wal-Mart just had this one (Tad's is light green); I would have preferred a non-rattling one but Tad has rediscovered the awesomeness of rattles recently so he is enjoying having a ball and rattle all in one. He does throw it like a ball in addition to shaking it, so that's good.

Our Christmas Eve dinner was intended to be Christmas Day breakfast, but I got impatient. So we had sausage cheddar biscuits and assorted Christmas goodies. 

Cookies, fudge, buckeyes.
Then on Christmas Day our dinner was a pot roast accompanied by carrots and potatoes. I threw in a bunch of butter and some beef broth and assorted spices--mostly garlic. It turned out pretty good if I do say so myself.

At some point we are going to have Second Christmas with Scott's family, but everybody has been super sick so we're not sure when. We want to make especially sure everybody's healthy because Mrs. EEB just had another baby. He is ridiculously cute judging from pictures on Facebook, so maybe it's better I'm not going to be exposed to him too soon--right now we can't really afford to find out if tiny babies are contagious. ;)

For more Quick Takes, I have no idea where you should go this week.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

7QT: Many different kinds of moving

So, we moved. (Kind of like how Quick Takes moved!) We were supposed to be out of our old place no later than November 30 and ended up locking up around 1:20 a.m. on December 1. Yes, that was as terrible as it sounds. 

It was so exhausting that the baby who never
sleeps alone ended up passed out on the floor.

We survived, though. I will have to do a video tour or something for those of you who are obsessed with the layout of other people's living spaces. (Or is that just me?)

The post office has succeeded in forwarding mail to our new place, so that's one thing out of the way. We're gradually trying to work on changing our address with everywhere else so we stop needing that forwarded mail. 

One thing that's slowing us down on the whole notifying-people-we-moved front is that 3 weeks after originally contacting the phone company to notify them of our change of address, we still don't have reliable home phone service. I really don't feel like going into that whole saga right now, especially since it probably won't be over for a while yet. (First thing on the to-do list is contacting our landlord to figure out who else offers phone and internet here. Then we're going to switch and pray really hard that it takes the new company less than 3 weeks to get things sorted.)

On the plus side, during the 11 days I didn't have home internet, I managed to get a lot of reading done. I read Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay on Melanie's recommendation. I am not sure what I thought of it. It might be the kind of book that I have to read twice. (The first time to figure out what on earth is going on, and the second time to enjoy.) But I have internet again, for now, so I'm not sure when I'll find the time to reread.

Tad decided to christen the new apartment by taking his first steps here. He took the very first step on December 2, when Scott and I were both looking at him because I was trying to take a picture of something unrelated.

Scott was holding a ball just out of reach...
or so he thought.

Since then he's worked his way up to 4 or 5 steps at a time, or so Scott alleges. I've never seen more than 2. He can also stand unsupported for a couple of minutes at least, if he's distracted by an interesting toy or some trinket he's not supposed to have. As soon as we start commenting on his awesome standing he stops whatever he's doing, looks around, and then sinks slowly onto his bottom.

His other big milestone is molars. The first one (bottom right) poked through on December 7, and then the second one (bottom left) on December 18. 

He was also sick AGAIN this week (I might have to abstain from LLL until spring because we always catch some pestilence a few days after a meeting...) so as you can imagine I am very, very tired.

His 9-month language explosion or whatever that was seems to have ended. The only new word he's added to his vocabulary in the last month is "uh duh" for "all done", which he already knew the sign for, so I'm not sure that even counts as a new word. My mother even heard "uh duh" once when we were visiting them recently, so it's not just our overactive first-time-parent imaginations reading all these words into his random sounds.

(For those of you not playing along at home, he now has five spoken words and four signs, for a total of eight words.)

He has made some pretty impressive cognitive leaps, though. The other day I was reading The Wonder Weeks in the hopes of gaining some insight into the brain of my tiny agent of sleep deprivation. TWW told me that sometime between 55 and 65 weeks, Tad is supposed to discover "the world of programs" wherein he realizes that there is more than one way to solve a problem.

I looked up from the book to notice that my 55-week-old (52 weeks adjusted) had stopped helplessly banging the box he was pushing against the corner and was instead backing it up and turning it in another direction so he could keep walking while pushing it.

I returned the book to the library. I took that episode as a sign that I'm on my own in figuring out this kid. :)

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary This Ain't The Lyceum!