Sick babies, sleep deprivation, going goth, and KITTENS

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Fathers

Today I found myself crying over how beautiful the relationship between babies and fathers can be. I will always be grateful to have a wonderful husband who is an attentive father to both of his children, born and unborn.

My husband’s relationship with our daughter began while she was still in the womb — I remember waking up one night to discover him gently pushing against my stomach, then waiting for the baby to bump back, the two of them playing this game while I was dead asleep. When I made that final push during labor, it was his arms that caught her, and his voice that declared, “It’s a girl!” She had a struggle with breathing during those first moments, so when they rushed her off to the NICU, my husband went with her. Consequently, he was the first person she saw when she opened her eyes.

Now, when our daughter wakes up in the morning, the first thing she wants is to be held by daddy. One of her favorite games is to hold onto daddy’s finger and walk around the house with him. And of course, there’s nothing anywhere near as fun as being spun around and tossed into the air by daddy. I am proud to say that our daughter is a ‘daddy’s girl’.

With our new baby, my husband and I share moments of quietly sitting together and feeling the baby kick and squirm. When the time comes for this baby to make its entrance into the world, my husband’s arms will once again catch it.

Neither my husband nor I want him to be a second mother to our children — that’s my job! We want him to be a Father, strong and protective, and someone worthy of admiration and emulation. His relationship with our children is very different than mine, but it is still just as beautiful, and just as important. The wonderment at being blessed enough to witness such a relationship is enough to make me cry.

General Life

My baby, who shall henceforth be known as my toddler, has been on a destructive streak of late. I’ve been spending most of my time cleaning up after her, especially since she’s learning new ways to get into mischief every day (which is why I have decided to start calling her my toddler). It’s been a bit distressing, because I want to spend more time sewing and less time cleaning, especially now that I’ve got the itch to start another lingerie project. Oh lingerie, your siren call is too alluring to be denied.

In other news, I’ve been learning how to swim. Now that it’s the off season, my husband has been taking me to the pool so that I can practice Not Drowning without crowds of people around to witness it. I confess that I’m very proud of myself for doing this, considering how terrified of water I was just a short while ago. Now I can stand in it up to my neck without feeling worried in the slightest. Woo hoo!

I’m still getting ready for Halloween, but thankfully there’s just a little bit more to do before my toddler’s costume is finished. Just in the nick of time too, because the party with her cousins is tomorrow.

Shopping Trip

Some days it feels like the teething will never end, but it will, in fact, keep getting worse and worse as baby’s new teeth keep getting bigger and bigger. And babies have a lot of teeth to grow in.

To help me recover from feeling frazzled, my husband took me out for an all-day shopping trip.

I’ve wanted my husband to have some nice shaving supplies for about as long as we’ve been together, so the first place we stopped in was The Art of Shaving. After we were given a demonstration of how a brush works with shaving soap, I KNEW that we had to get it — the effect was amazing. I’ve always heard that a brush makes a huge difference, and I’m very happy that my husband now has one.

Then my little family shared a caramel apple together, and it was on to Lush for me. Today I was in the mood for their Emotional Brilliance line, and picked out new colors for myself. The girl at the store told me that the makeup can also be used to put colorful streaks through one’s hair, which I’m excited to try — it’s always fun to experiment with different looks.

And finally, my husband and I shared some delicious potato soup in a bread bowl from Kneaders (the baby stubbornly refused to eat any), marking the end of a thoroughly wonderful shopping trip.

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My nice camera is still broken, and the cheap one we have puts a rather artsy effect on indoor photos.

Happenings with my baby

My baby is having more teeth grow in, which has had her very unhappy for the past few days. It was a relief when I saw those little white teeth start to poke through those poor swollen gums, because it meant that there would soon be an end to the screaming. My baby has gotten quite good at ear-splitting screeches.

This morning she’s back to making her cuter noises. One of her favorite things to do is to run around rawring at everything, so I affectionately call her my Baby Monster. It’s very precious to hear her playing make-believe with her little voice.

The past week has been full of the ups and downs of motherhood, and I wouldn’t have my life be any other way.

Chores for Toddlers

Now that my baby is 14 months old, I’ve decided that it’s time to start giving her chores. I’ll never scrub the toilet again!

Ha ha!

In reality, I’ve decided to assign her a very simple task based on her current interests: she helps me push the laundry basket to the washing machine.

I hope that by making sure that her first association with the idea of chores is fun, she’ll be more enthusiastic about helping me maintain an organized household when she’s older. Will it work? I have no idea — it will be several years before I’ll be able to see the results of my efforts. What I do know, however, is that it’s cute to watch my baby push the laundry basket, and that we both really enjoy cheering a job well done. We’re having fun now, and that’s the part that ultimately matters more.

It will be awhile yet before I’ll be able to give my baby any real chores, but working together in small ways now is hopefully preparing us for the future while giving us an excuse to play.

Timeouts and Tantrums

The baby has learned how to climb on furniture. She’s a very stubborn and determined sort of person, and since she’s decided that she wants to climb on top of the cedar chest and dance around, she’s going to climb on top of the cedar chest and dance around, come hell or high water.

So, we’ve had to implement a new procedure: timeouts. If she ignores me telling her ‘no’ enough times, she has to sit in my lap for a few minutes. I know it’s working because she’ll usually throw a tantrum.

I think of tantrums as my baby learning emotional control, and in that light they are surprisingly adorable to watch. It’s like her body is too small to contain all of the upset that she’s feeling! So I hug her and kiss her, and tell her that I love her and that I’m helping her grow by teaching her how to regain control when her emotions flare up. In the end, it’s not that bad.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Being a wife and mother is the most exquisitely delightful thing that I have ever done.