Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy birthday, little dude.

New things:

  • tooth, one. Poked through so you can feel it. You won't let us look. But it was kinda how I thought it would be. Andrew poked his finger in, said you had a tooth. I called bullshit, because you hadn't been giving us grief. Andrew 1, me 0. Since then, of course, sleeping is SO 2008, Mother!
  • hair, some. It's getting there.
  • um, locomotion, lots. Inspired, apparently, by your love for all things digital and buttony. I sense either a lot of vigilance in our living room or a complete redesign involving height and fences. Maybe a moat. We'll see.
  • food, more than lots. Your grandfather fed you one day and was amazed that he had to keep going back and making more food. "And then I gave him peas," he said. "Suddenly, he was full!" Yeah, it's like that. I've been making your food and it's been awesome, but I'm starting not being able to keep up. More cheerios make it into your mouth than onto the floor, and that's a big accomplishment.

We're coming to the end of our glorious three week break together, what with the week of ARCTIC BLAST and then winter break. It's like blam! you got hit with the growing stick, and now you can't get enough. You're really into experimenting with your voice, from growls to squeaks to absolutely awesome high-pitched shrieks which make Matilda run for cover.

More videos to come, so I'll be sure to embarass you online as much and whenever possible. So, you know, big-dude-who's-already-wearing-18month-clothes, beware. I'm armed with a new video recorder, and dangerous.

Love you, baby boy.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Arctic Blast

Originally uploaded by karijean
Last week, during school, we had some lame-ass Snow Days.

THIS is a real snow day. Andrew (of course) still went into work today, but the rest of the city is literally frozen in its tracks. And I don't say "literally" meaning "figuratively". I mean, planes are going nowhere (hence why we're still here--Andrew's family will have to wait to meet Howie), garbage hasn't been picked up, and the shelves of our grocery store are rapidly becoming bare. The UPS guy was spotted down the street--his truck couldn't drive the street and he was walking packages door to door. That is dedication.

I took some pictures of our view, this is the first of them. Take a look!

So... remember when I said it never snows here? Yeah, about that....

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Winter crazy

Winter temperature
Originally uploaded by karijean
It has not stopped snowing today.

The television networks are calling this "Arctic Blast! 2008" and other crazy hyperbole. Wednesday was entirely devoted to live television coverage at various points around the city, which was ridiculous because aside from a brief period Monday morning, the city has been entirely drivable and not even close to being snowed in.

Today, however, is another story. The entire town is hunkering down for what may be a prolonged period of isolation and snow storminess. Or, as the midwest would call it, "Saturday".

This would be entirely awesome if we were staying here for the holidays, but we're not. Tomorrow we're supposed to fly to the midwest.

Travelling with a baby is entirely different from travelling by yourself. Travelling by yourself, you can pack a week early (if you want to) or pack the morning of. Throw some shit in a bag, bring your ID and a book, hey! good to go.

Travelling with an eight month old? You have to consider how much you'll need to feed him during your travelling time. (flight leaves at two, we get to the airport at noon, fly until 8 Chicago time which is 6 in Portland so... carry the two... we're travelling for twelve hours and apparently he'll have to eat five times and have six bottles? Whatever, just pack too much and assume he won't eat it all) Clothes. PJs. Toys. Blankets. Diapers. Wipes. Dear heaven and all the gods in it... when do I get to pack my own shit? Because don't forget car seat (the rental agency only has forwards-facing ones) and booster seat/high chair.

Talk about makin' a list and checkin' it twice.

So all day today has been packing and laundry and packing and organizing and list making. Uploading pictures because we won't be back here for a week. Charging various batteries, phones, cameras, and other electronic apparatuses (apparati?). All while juggling a totally inconsiderate eight month old who wants to do things like eat and crawl and get his diapers changed... can you believe it??

At any rate, our wee family is (hopefully) off to the midwest for more snow and family and a white Christmas, and will be back on the 26th, you know, assuming the gods don't choose to let loose with the fury of flurry at that end either. So if we don't see you before then, a merriest of seasons for you and yours!

For believing

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Blizzard, 2008: Update

Okay, so now I'm as bad as my students. I'm obsessively refreshing the news sites hoping to see my school district. No luck yet.

And in the meantime? I haven't done my homework. My excuse though: earlier today, the laptop I'd been using went all blue-screen on me. Looking at a long day indoors, and possibly more than one day, horror filled me. An entire day? Without Scramble????

My husband, though, found an old laptop and over the course of this afternoon, scrubbed it and reinstalled XP and IE (at the highest version that this old dinosaur can handle). I don't have Office, but at least I have email. I may not have married rich, but I sure married smart.

I'm off to cook dinner. And refresh a few sites.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Snow! The great blizzard of 2008... okay, blizzard-ish

Dear Mr. and Ms. Weathercaster and the entire Weather.com family of networks,

The PNW cannot deal with snow. They cannot deal with the idea of snow. Unless it's safely up a mountain and then they snowboard. But snow? In driveways???? GOOD GOD MAN STOCK UP ON WATER AND HUNKER DOWN!

Make those Pacific Northwesterners teenagers and tell them that it might maybe just possibly snow this weekend, maybe, and it's like you sprinkled magic fairy dust on everyone and then pulled a unicorn out of your ass. Work? Homework? Reading? Math? HAVEN'T YOU HEARD IT MIGHT SNOW? WOMAN! HOW CAN YOU EXPECT ME TO WORK IF IT MIGHT SNOW???

So on behalf of teachers throughout Northern California, Oregon, and Washington, I have a small request: if you think it might snow at anything less than 1000 feet of altitude, can you keep it to yourself? Until it actually does start snowing? Because now, whether or not we have a "snow" day on Monday (which we might very well even if it doesn't snow because even the scent of snow is enough to call off school), I humbly predict 80% of my students will not have done their homework. BECAUSE IT MIGHT SNOW.

Ms. Kari

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Dude! I'm microfamous!

I'm in there. Yes, yes, I am Shit Filled Underwear.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Seven (and a half) months

Dear Howie,

It was inevitable, really. Apparently, ear infections run in our family.

But you know what, peanut? Our only clue that you were sick? Was the unending river of nasty that ran out of your ear. There was no petulance, no ear-grabbing, no sleepless nights, no refusal to eat, fevers, clinginess, nothing. Your ear just looked like you'd shoved a handful of pear puree in your ear--repeatedly--daily--hourly. And then let it slowly leak out. Think runny nose. Only out your ear.

Grossed out yet? Happy to share, my son!

Apparently your eardrum ruptured ("Totally normal," your doctor says. Which--ew!) which meant that your ear was infected enough to tear through your eardrum and you still were your rosy-cheeked, sweet, normal, investigative self.

Like, seriously? To paraphrase a famous nun, I must have done something damn good to deserve you.

Thanksgiving with you was a blast and a half. Mashed potatoes sent you into raptures of gnarlitude, complete with choking and shudders and wiping your tongue. Mark me, I will remind you of this when you go for thirds when you're a teenager, because that was certainly what you looked like--a teenager being asked to try something like kimchee or brussel sprouts, which, by the way, do deserve the whole-body shudders. Mashed potatoes, you will find out, most assuredly do not.

But yams and squash and pears and apples and bananas and peaches and beans and peas are all A-OK by you. I pick you up from daycare every day, and if you're awake, you see me across the room and grin and you've started holding your hands out to each side as a "Pick me UP!" signal which I never thought could turn my heart to mush but it so does. We run home and settle in and you sit in your high chair and nibble on Cheerios while I put your dinner together and then I sit down with your daily dish and I can't get it in you fast enough--you lead with your open mouth like a baby bird, but you have conversations with me the entire time.

You've got things to say, kid.

I know I only have like two weeks until your next monthly letter is due, but we have a lot of crap to do in the meantime. It's your first Christmas, homey! Your first plane trip, your first meeting with the rest of your cousins and aunts and uncles and don't worry, you won't be expected to know everyone's names (I'm still working on it) and your first true overnight outside of your home, but this is gonna be awesome.

You are SO close to crawling. You sit--you're pretty expert at that now--not quite black belt but definitely red belt--and there's something juuuuuust beyond your reach. You reach--and reach--and reach--and one of your feet goes behind your butt--and you reach--but that other leg just stays stuck in front of you. I love sitting near you and just watching as your focus keeps you trying. I don't know if you'll wait til 2009 to crawl.

There's one more milestone that you haven't hit yet, though, dude. I don't want to pressure you, but it starts with t and rhymes with shmeeth. No one never grows teeth, right? It's not a criticism, because my nipples are appreciative, but... dude, you don't even have blisters as if teeth are even coming soon. I'm not freaking out (exactly)... it's just weird.

So I have one small request--you've put it off this long, can you wait til we're done with airtravel before deciding to finally join the dental bandwagon? Thanks, buds, that'd be great. Because knowing you, you're going to go from toothless to BAM! an Orbit grin, like, overnight. One long, sleepless, cranky overnight.

Or, maybe you feel no pain and like your ears, my first clue will be your mouth full of teeth. In which case, either you are awesome or we are the most un-noticing parents in the history of parents. You know, either way.

Stay cool, kiddo.

your mama.