A life ruled by a 20 pound tyrant, the number 200, and more…

Well here we are, 200 posts since I moved my Western attitude to the East coast. Thanks for everyone who has read my various and sundry ramblings. I appreciate your time and the connection to the outside world.

My life continues to be ruled by my 20+ pound tyrant. Otter has begun to “talk”, making little vocal stylings at all hours of day and night, trying out his mouth and vocal cords. His talking is quite darling when the sun is out, so long as you are not trying to speak to anyone yourself. However, he has begun to wake up at an ungodly early hour to regale his father and I with tales of wild baby tribes living deep in the jungle and god only knows what else. He now does this almost every day. He is very, very loud.

So I drearily wave goodbye to the sleep I finally began to catch up on. I welcome back the bleary-eyed, leaving my keys in the freezer, sleepless self. I get lots of smiles to make up for the lack of sleep, along with a lot of baby giggles. I am also getting regular lectures on the deplorable treatment of babies in this culture, a loud demand for an increase in snuggle time, and the joy of watching Otter talk to this sister.

We are also nursing nigh constantly now, as opposed to the previous 3 months of slightly less than nigh constant nursing. Has anyone else out there had a Mongo baby? He is over 20 pounds and only 3 and a half months old. He grew out of his 9 months clothes in one week, and is now wearing 12-18 month clothes. I need a support group for moms of amazon babies. I need answers to questions like, “is it realistic to presume I can continue to breast-feed an infant this large without supplementing?” I need a unlimited gift certificate to Baby Gap. I need a massage therapist to deal with my aching back and shoulder muscles. Mostly, I think I need other women to tell me how they handled having huge children.

Lee is doing very well at his job, his career has taken new twists and turns that I don’t fully to understand. He is happy, he is stressed, he rarely programs, but manages large numbers of people programming a large array of projects. He has days when he can’t even sit at his desk to wolf down a sandwich. He is amazing and I am very proud of him.

Monkey is happily engaged in being a big sister. Her brother is completely fascinated by her and watches her all the time. Therefore, she has begun to view his existence as highly positive, instead of dubious. He has done well, knowing which person to kiss up to for extra love and attention. She dotes on him, holds him all the time, and gets many drooly kisses for all her love and hard work. It is really neat, being able to watch their relationship develop. I always felt my brother and I had a little secret world, separate from our parents, and I really hope Monkey and Otter have a similar connection.

My foot is better, I can walk really well on it, but I still can’t stand to have the spot touched. Sigh. I hate adding things to do to my list of things to do, there are already so many things to do! I guess I will try and visit a doctor soon. Feh.

Mom was out here for a wonderful week. We had a perfect day at the beach with Monkey and Otter. Mom and I took turns taking Monkey into the water, where we squealed and splashed. While mom was in the water with her, Otter and I lay down under the umbrella and watched the sky. It was pretty magical. He loved to be there in the little wind-break I made him out of bags and towels. He kept smiling and looking around at all the new sounds. Then mom took over and Monkey and I spent a while getting wet and giggling. She is such fun at the beach, perfectly happy to run in and out of the waves for as long as anyone will let her. I was completely refreshed after the visit.

On the home-front, we finally got the dishwasher and dryer repaired, which is wonderful, though the combination of the repair person and the cable guy having appointments today has rendered my chances at a shower negligible. The repair guy was in and out in less than an hour. However, Scott, the cable guy, well actually the Fios guy, is still here, having had to bring the cables over three telephone poles and across the street. He got here first, and I began to feel pretty bad for him when it hit 1:30 and he was still installing. I decided it was only polite to feed him. After all, they do not have any information warning against the feeding of a cable guy on the website and he had been here working all morning. He seemed happy to sit and enjoy a very sticky peanut butter and jelly sandwich and a cold glass of ice water while basking in our air conditioning. I even stuck a few ginger snaps on his plate.

Happily, I can now do dishes with minimum hassle, and I will be able to dry my clothes too. Yay! I can take down the temporary clothesline I created in our sitting room! Now all I need is a Wife, and my domestic life will be complete.

Putting my best foot forward…

Okay, I can walk on it today, which is a huge improvement over last night. It is less swollen too, just very painful to touch, or fully point my toe. If it is not better in the next day or so, I will be visiting the doctor.

Thanks to all who have called and emailed to check on me!

Worst foot forward

What a pain in the foot…

I had foot surgery last year to repair a genetically fracked bone structure. All seemingly went well, though I was unable to attend physical therapy due to the endless hours of preparation for the bar exam. I did a lot of physical therapy at home, and at school, on my own, and my doctor cleared me. All seemed well.

That it, until about two hours ago when something painfully snapped in my foot while I walked slowly across my bedroom. My foot was at the end of it’s step when a spot directly under one of my scars from the surgery snapped and began to swell. It tingled and hurt like mad for over an hour, and has, with Ibuprofen and ice, gone down in size and pain level. However, I can not bring myself to fully walk on it, as doing so requires me to move it in the manner that caused it to snap.

The spot in question is so incredibly sore to the touch that I really want to hit Lee each time he checks it out. I am not sure how I am going to handle putting a blanket on it.

Of course, in 10 days I am traveling home to Denver with two children on my own, so I am sure that the foot issue won’t make that more difficult or anything.

Here, enjoy some babies, looking at them made me feel a little better, and I want to share the love;
Olttr after a bath:

Monkey discovers the fun in bubble bath beauty parlors:

Otter and his new blocks:

A captured baby smile:


Steal This Post: Inflammatory Breast Cancer

Please read the following and pass it on. EVERYONE is at risk for this type of cancer. Please help us pass on awareness.

From Toddler Planet.

We hear a lot about breast cancer these days. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetimes, and there are millions living with it in the U.S. today alone. But did you know that there is more than one type of breast cancer?

I didn’t. I thought that breast cancer was all the same. I figured that if I did my monthly breast self-exams, and found no lump, I’d be fine.

Oops. It turns out that you don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer. Six weeks ago, I went to my OB/GYN because my breast felt funny. It was red, hot, inflamed, and the skin looked…funny. But there was no lump, so I wasn’t worried. I should have been. After a round of antibiotics didn’t clear up the inflammation, my doctor sent me to a breast specialist and did a skin punch biopsy. That test showed that I have inflammatory breast cancer, a very aggressive cancer that can be deadly.

Inflammatory breast cancer is often misdiagnosed as mastitis because many doctors have never seen it before and consider it rare. “Rare” or not, there are over 100,000 women in the U.S. with this cancer right now; only half will survive five years. Please call your OB/GYN if you experience several of the following symptoms in your breast, or any unusual changes: redness, rapid increase in size of one breast, persistent itching of breast or nipple, thickening of breast tissue, stabbing pain, soreness, swelling under the arm, dimpling or ridging (for example, when you take your bra off, the bra marks stay – for a while), flattening or retracting of the nipple, or a texture that looks or feels like an orange (called peau d’orange). Ask if your GYN is familiar with inflammatory breast cancer, and tell her that you’re concerned and want to come in to rule it out.

There is more than one kind of breast cancer. Inflammatory breast cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer out there, and early detection is critical. It’s not usually detected by mammogram. It does not usually present with a lump. It may be overlooked with all of the changes that our breasts undergo during the years when we’re pregnant and/or nursing our little ones. It’s important not to miss this one.

Inflammatory breast cancer is detected by women and their doctors who notice a change in one of their breasts. If you notice a change, call your doctor today. Tell her about it. Tell her that you have a friend with this disease, and it’s trying to kill her. Now you know what I wish I had known before six weeks ago.

You don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer.

In all parody

What happens when a creatively inclined type A personality stays home with the kids all day?
Musical Parodies!

The burping song: (Sung to “We will rock you!” by Queen. New lyrics by Moi!!)

“Pat pat pat
Pat pat pat

You’ve got a rumbly hunger
deep inside your tummy
time to fill it up with something
warm and yummy

You’ve got milk on your face
a big disgrace,
spitting that milk all over the place

Singing we will, we will, burp you.”

pat pat pat
pat pat pat

We will, we will, burp you.”

The standing song, created when Otter began to push himself up into a standing position. (Sung to “I believe I can fly” by R. Kelly. New Lyrics by Moi!)

“I believe I can stand
I believe I can eat my hand
I believe in my sister’s smile
the one that shines at me all the while

I believe I can stand
I believe I have many fans
All those people who kiss my toes
wipe my bottom and wipe my nose,
I believe I can stand.”

Otter likes his standing song so much now that he looks pointedly at me every time he rises up as if to say “Where is my theme song mommy?”

A pregnant woman doesn’t enter a bar

The Bar Exam…

Is this upcoming week, however, after a long and hard think, I will not be taking it. Instead, I will be finishing the complaint for my first ever case as a licensed attorney, and will be compiling educational materials to assist in establishing a foundation in honor of my friend Nick.

As to my reasons, between baby, moving, and burnout, it was simply too much. I couldn’t make enough milk to feed Otter, freeze a store for the exam, and train him on the bottle. I couldn’t get the house unpacked, work on my case, and prepare mentally for the exam. I couldn’t get enough sleep to remember all the elements of a contract, or the Rule against Perpetuities (which I used to teach). It was all too much.

Thank you to everyone who believed I could do it, it helped to think I could, and I am beyond honored to be thought so smart by so many smart people. However, this time around, my eyes were bigger than my stomach, when it came to filling my plate.

So I am going to focus on getting things off my plate, reading Harry Potter, and having a good time with my mother.

No faith at all… bad or otherwise

The eye of the storm…

It seems the Bad Faith acting landlords were actually merely soliciting my advice, not attempting to get to pay to replace the carpets. Forget that any rational individual would have read their email as an indication they were attempting to get us to buy them new carpet, they were really just asking for our knowledge. The house is great, they say, and we were great tenants. The check will be in the mail this week. (What is that hissing sound you ask? It’s my righteous litigation balloon deflating.)

I am sure they will never rent to a lawyer again, if they can help it.

Otter is getting better at tummy time, and seems to hate it less. He has such a large body, lifting all that cushy baby fat must be really hard, poor guy. However, day before yesterday he lifted his head up several times, and has continued to do so whenever placed on his tum-tum. Granted, he mostly lifts it to complain, but he does lift it. He is also a big fan of standing, his ability to rise up on his legs makes him smile again and again.

Monkey is progressing in her reading, and is beginning to do very well. She had been reading to Otter and me once a day. This week it is from the book “Oliver Cat goes to Planet B.” She likes to show her baby brother the pictures, and explain what is going on to him.

The children took a bath together yesterday, and Otter was so proud to be in the tub with Monkey. He looked at her, at the water, at her, and smiled a huge baby grin! Monkey greatly enjoyed the bath as well, showing Otter the various different ways you can wash your hair, your hands, etc.

The house is more settled, and I am beginning to feel slightly more human, and less like a stress-kitten. I am still firmly planted in the spinning vortex of a life filled with baby, child, pets, husband, and house, but there seems to be an occasional eye to my storm. It helps that Mom is here. Yay Mom!

Breathe. Take a page from FlyLady, and forgive myself for somehow losing entire days to games of Kiss the baby feet, and helping Monkey read. The housework will still be here, for the days that do seem to have fragments of discernable time.