Sunday, January 22, 2012

He smiles!

I dare you not to eat him.

He gave us his first smile the day after his one-month birthday, but he's still very stingy with them. I finally caught one on camera phone today. How stinking cute is this guy? Ayayay I just can't stand it sometimes.

Friday, January 13, 2012

One month

He celebrated with a raucous all-nighter. It was awesome.

Now, for some random and unrelated observations on Elliott's first month ex utero:

  • He's generally a decent sleeper, just as long as he's in full-body contact with me. I realize I'm setting the stage for misery by allowing it, but in the middle of the night there's just about no trade I wouldn't make to just get back to sleep. Try me.
  • I should know better than to ever write about a child's sleep habits, because children, even as young as one month, read their moms' blogs and respond by making liars of them.
  • Scratch everything I just wrote. He's a terrible sleeper.
  • Children don't fall for reverse psychology. I'm screwed. 
  • He doesn't look like me or Greg, as far as we can tell. Still, he's pretty cute. 
  • When he was first born, I said to Greg, "Weird, he doesn't have any teeth. Do you think we should call a dentist?" Greg said, "I don't know, I guess maybe? I can't remember: How many teeth did Nora have when she was born?" He was serious.
  • Nursing has been really, really hard this time around. Another thing I thought would be a breeze with number two, especially since it was so easy with Nora. But it's been painful, and now I have mastitis, which is basically like the flu with the added bonus of boobs that feel like they're about to self-destruct. Fun times. 
  • Elliott is a pretty serious little kid. He furrows his brow so intently sometimes that it turns completely white. I'm looking forward to the smiley stage, but enjoying this scornful phase as well.
  • Time is passing quickly, as it always does when you're watching your babies grow. It's different this time than last, though. I think with the first I often wanted time to accelerate so we could get through the difficult aspects of whatever phase we were in. With the second, I realized how wasteful it is to wish away even a minute, given how precious each minute is. The passage of time seriously depressed me with Nora. This time around, I'm prematurely nostalgic and look back wistfully on photos from two days ago, but at the same time I know that each of the next stages holds its own beauty. And so I'm slightly more at peace with Elliott's rapid growth. 
  • Speaking of rapid growth: He was 8 lbs. 2 oz. when he was born. In the hospital he dropped down to 7 lbs. 9 oz. On day three he was 7 lbs. 15 oz. At one week he was 8 lbs. 14 oz. At two weeks he was 9 lbs. 11 oz. (I realize this is interesting to no one but his parents, but since I have never done a baby book, this is where I record such things.)
  • His first month birthday falls on a Friday the 13th. Spooky! Do you think it's too early for his first horror movie marathon? 
The all-nighters are catching up with him.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Sibling love

The big kids' first meeting with their little bro:

All in all, the big ones have adjusted very well to their new sibling. In fact, I think it's brought them closer together, as they're forced to find fun and companionship in each other when mom and dad are busy. Their interest in the baby comes and goes; most mornings Nora comes into our bed to hold the baby for about four seconds, and then she forgets about him for the day. Sidamo is interested in him when he does something interesting, like poop audibly.

We are careful not to let Nora alone with the baby unattended, as her affection can sometimes get a little too, umm, assertive (as we've learned with the chickens). His second night home, Nora asked, "Why does Elliott need to have a sleepover with us?" Greg answered, "Well, he's our baby, so he's going to be having quite a lot of sleepovers with us." She asked, "Why did we need a baby?"

A little later, I saw her walking toward Elliott with a pillow in her outstretched hands: "He's cold, so I'm just going to warm him up."


But fears for Elliott's survival aside, I'd say life is going pretty well so far with three. It has helped that Greg has taken off work, so he has been on big kid duty while I've tended to the baby. The timing is quite lucky, actually: Elliott was born just before the kids' schools closed for two-and-a-half weeks, and I shudder to think what I would have done if I'd been thrown into full-time care of three kids without Greg's (enormous, indescribable, superhuman …) help.

Sidamo's 6th

Here's a very belated happy birthday to my first little man. Sidamo turned 6 a couple day's before the baby was born, and we had a super-fun celebration for him and about a billion of his closest friends at a local sports club.

The day started with pancakes, champagne (a.k.a. apple juice in champagne flutes), and presents.

The themes of the day—sports and Legos—reflect the themes of Sidamo's life right now. Every minute of every day, it seems, is spent doing Legos, playing sports, or talking about Legos, sports, and the intersection of the two. He likes to play football, by himself and without a football, on the rug in our living room. Here's what it looks like: He throws himself to the ground, tackled by some phantom linebacker, and then asks for help dissecting the play. "Was I in bounds? Did I get a touchdown? Where was my knee? Did you see the clock?" And you better come prepared with solid answers, unless you want to see the instant replay (in slow motion, or course). I have learned more about football and basketball in the past few months than I managed to learn in three-plus decades of life.

We normally do mellow birthday parties at home, but this time we decided to outsource the whole thing since it was four days past my due date. So in a completely uncharacteristic feat of organization, I arranged all the details of the party back in August. The theme was basketball, and Sidamo was in heaven. He even had a basketball-shaped cake, courtesy of my extremely talented friend Sarah.

Sidamo had a great time, both on the day and in the coming days, when he dedicated himself entirely to building all the Legos he received on his birthday. The thousands of pieces were almost enough to carry him through Christmas, when he received thousands more.

Happy belated birthday to my sweet, funny, brilliant, and completely sports-obsessed little man. We love you!