Produce and baby

Filed under: — Aprille @ 3:02 pm

I just had some really outstanding bing cherries.

I’m excited for more seasonal produce to come on so Miles can enjoy it too.  I hope he enjoys August peaches.

Denny had the honor of changing the first diaper that was noticeably affected by the inclusion of solid food in Miles’s diet.  He yelled really loudly at the stench.  That frightened Miles (who, to be fair, was tired and hungry and probably wouldn’t have gotten upset any other time), who shrieked for a while.  Then the electricity went out and we hung out in bed with a flashlight.

In other exciting news, Miles has been napping in his crib, of all places.  Those of you who follow my Flickr stream already know this, but we’d been using his crib mainly for storage, since he sleeps either in the Arm’s Reach (little sidecar crib thingy that attaches to our bed) or in bed with us.

However, that’s not the kind of thing I want him to do for the rest of his life, so we got the crib cleaned out last weekend, and I’m getting him used to it.  So far he likes it, especially the crib toys, and his naps have been going pretty well.  He still wakes up at least once per night, sometimes more, so I don’t know exactly when it will make sense to have him in there overnight, but the day is coming.


We’ll see.


Snoop Dogg does country

Filed under: — Aprille @ 11:59 am

I must confess that I really like this song.  Note the Willy Nelson cameo.

Warning:  contains (thinly-) veiled drug references.


Miles eats rice cereal

Filed under: — Aprille @ 7:52 am

After much hand-wringing, we gave Miles his first taste of solids last night.  It went pretty well.  Click below if you’re inclined to see 2 minutes of evidence.


The avid consumer

Filed under: — Aprille @ 12:49 pm

I feel like I’m a kid on summer vacation, only I have to do my own laundry and care for an infant.

Denny and I are still at my parents’ house, though they’re on vacation.  We decided to just stick around here for a bit longer so as not to be a drain on Iowa City resources.  Fortunately it looks like things are getting better there, and I appreciate the assurances from neighbors (I’m looking at you, Katy O) that things are okay in our area.

So yeah, it feels like I’m on summer break.  Technically I’m still working remotely, but the university is kind of at a standstill, so there hasn’t been a lot for me to do.  I’ve never had a summer off since I’ve been living in our IC house, so this lounging around in Ames thing is giving me childhood flashbacks.  It makes me want to ride my bike to the swimming pool.

Miles has been super interested in grownup food and drink the last week or so.  He’s had diluted apple juice and water a couple of times, and it really seems like he’s ready for some basic solids.  This fact tugs at me a little; I’m used to being his only food source.  I can’t believe how big he’s getting.

Here he is at a coffee shop trying to get his mouth into an Italian soda.  Obviously he’s not allowed to have that, but he sure wanted it.



Filed under: — Aprille @ 5:35 pm

I just realized this might not be the best time to go a week without posting.

As many of you know, much of Iowa (including our town, Iowa City) has been severely damaged by flooding. We are currently at my parents’ house in Ames, which appears to not be in serious danger. It looks like our house in IC is fine; we’re far enough from the flood plain that it shouldn’t be an issue. On the other hand, every estimate the weather-types have made thus far has under-predicted the actual damage.

My brother just moved to Lincoln, NE, to start his new job. It’s a good thing, because his former street is under water. He hasn’t fully moved out yet; luckily he had a second-floor apartment, so while it’s totally inaccessible right now, at least his stuff is probably okay. There’s only one bridge left in town, which was our main reason to choose Ames as a hang-out location: even though our house and neighborhood are okay, we would be stranded. There’s also a high potential for losing electricity and water.

The only silver lining is that it seems to have brought Britney and Kevin back together.

Photo courtesy of the Iowa City Press Citizen.  Not actually Britney or Kevin.


Monthly Miles Memo #5

Filed under: — Aprille @ 6:03 pm

Dear Miles,

Today your father said to me, “I never thought I’d be so invested in another person’s poop.”

You see, young Miles, you have never in your entire life gone more than a day without having a bowel movement. On those occasions where you skip a day, the following day invariably involves a huge, disgusting blowout, your outfit soaking in a bucket, you soaking in the tub, and me sanitizing the changing table.

As of today, you were creeping up on 72 hours. Your dad and I were worried.

“It’s impossible for a breastfed baby to be constipated,” the books and websites say. Perhaps, but they couldn’t see you crying and straining, your tears soaking your hair and making it curl against your scalp. They couldn’t see your dad and me massaging your belly, bending and unbending your legs, and administering water from a medicine dropper. You didn’t sleep well last night (despite your recent accomplishments in that field; I am now proud to say that you have slept through the night no fewer than five times), which meant nobody slept well. We had plans today, but they were looking less and less fun the more you screamed.

On the advice of relatives and the ever-reliable Internet, we gave you some diluted apple juice, which is the first non-milk and non-water substance that has crossed your lips (unless you count the time you stuck your hand in my spaghetti sauce and licked your fingers). You were a bit confused by it at first, and you never really did get the hang of the sippy cup, so I just held the open cup to your mouth and let you have a taste. It was as if diluted apple juice was a nectar of the gods. True, about as much of it dribbled down your neck and back as went into your mouth, but you really enjoyed what I managed to get into you.

And, lo and behold, it worked. The laundry is currently soaking, you’re sleeping on my lap, and everyone is feeling much better. I even got to send a text message to your dad (who unfortunately had to miss this auspicious event) with the word “Poop!”, and he knew it was good news.

But enough about poop. (I say that all the time, and it always comes back to poop. Enough about poop for now, anyway.)

I barely remember my life before you, though I’m pretty sure there were hobbies and book-writing and trips to the movies in it. One thing I’m certain of is that I didn’t used to have to have my hair in a ponytail every day. You have developed the highly endearing habit of reaching up and touching my face, often responding to my question, “Can you get Mommy?” That’s all a delight, until you realize that my face happens to be very near my hair, and wouldn’t it be fun to grab some in your puke-sticky little fists?

(Aside: I now know what milk and apple juice smell like after being mixed together and exposed to stomach acid. Good times.)
Some other things you enjoy these days:

  • shoving your fist in your mouth
  • standing up like a big boy (with support)
  • playing with your plush friends Bob, Fran, and Phil
  • grabbing your feet.

You also began what I hope is a lifelong series of travel adventures. You had your first out-of-state trip, which was to St. Louis to cousin Laura and Joe’s wedding. For about 3.2 hours of the 4-hour drive, you were quiet and sweet. However, that remaining .8 hour was pretty darn hellish, my dear. I had always sworn I would be a front-seat mom; I know some moms who ride in the back seat with their babies, and I always felt like doing that would represent a kind of loss of dignity. But when your dad and I realized that my presence in the back seat could mean the difference between listening to screams and listening to giggles, I amended my stance.

It was lots of fun to spend time with your cousins, especially baby Anna. You weren’t too crazy about the wedding reception, which was too bad, because your dad and I were having lots of fun dancing with Laura, Joe, Adam, Erin, Brad, and the rest of the gang. We ended up leaving early, because there was just no way to calm you down with all the loud noises. I’m with you there, Miles—I prefer quiet places too, but sometimes you just have to partay a little bit. One of these years you’ll figure it out.

Another fun thing you got to do was take your first swim in a pool. You were pretty mellow about the whole thing; I thought you might flail around more, since you’ve been doing that a lot lately; in fact, one of my new nicknames for you is Flaily Ukuele. You mostly just chilled out in my arms while Anna chilled out in her mommy’s arms and you sailed languidly by one another.

You also recently had your second out-of-state trip, and your first airplane ride: we went to Portland and Cannon Beach, Oregon. You are better at plane travel than car travel. We did a lot of neat stuff, and you got to see the ocean for the first time. Cannon Beach was a cool setting: a creek runs right through the beach, parallel to the edge of the ocean, until they finally meet. I had hoped to put your toe in the water, but it was too cold. Still, your dad made up a song to celebrate the circumstances, and it’s one you like for me to sing to you while I’m there in the back seat. Dignity be damned.

To the tune of “Islands in the Stream”:

Miles in the stream,
Splashing with his arms,
Having so much fun,
Like a wiggle-worm.
Come away with me
to Cannon Beach.
We will splash on each other, oh,
Having fun with one another, oh.

Your sense of humor has really taken off this month. We have several videos of you cracking up, and just about every day has your laughter in it now. You had a lot of fun when your uncle Tyler got your ears. Inexplicably, you also found it hilarious when your dad whispered to you. All he did was lower his voice and say, “I am talking very quietly,” and you thought it was the funniest thing in the whole world.Maybe nobody watches the videos I post of you; maybe it’s just delusional mommy syndrome that makes me think a minute of your belly laugh is the most outrageously heart-warming thing ever invented. I don’t care. Much like your dad never thought he would become so invested in another person’s poop, I never realized I would so treasure a smelly little palm on my cheek, a floor covered in hairs that have been yanked out of my head, and the laughter of a little boy who thinks his mommy and daddy are silly.




Miles minutes

Filed under: — Aprille @ 8:25 pm

Here are a couple of short videos featuring Miles doing Miles-ish things (laughing and goofing around with a stuffed animal).

Also, isn’t it nuts the ridiculous things we do to entertain babies?

Home again, home again

Filed under: — Aprille @ 3:42 pm

We made it back from our trip to Oregon. We very, very briefly went to Washington as well, because our GPS (aka Mrs. Garman) failed to give us sufficient warning for an exit, and we had to continue across the border before we could get back to our Portland destination.

Miles did just wonderfully on the plane. He got a little grumpy a few times, but he only really cried for about 10 seconds. It’s a lot easier to fly with him than take a long car ride, apparently. The fact that there were two adults dedicated to entertaining him, as well as various fellow passengers and flight attendants, helped a lot.

Fun things about our trip:

  • Best quote: while we were waiting to get things sorted out with our rental car, a little boy (probably about 3) went to the bathroom with his dad. As they emerged, the little boy said, “But if we went potty and there’s soap in there, why didn’t we wash our hands?” The dad just mumbled and quickly ushered the boy out of the office.
  • Powell’s Books, a huge independent bookstore in downtown Portland with outlandish numbers of new and used books and a cool coffee mug for me.
  • Portland coffee. I went to a different coffee shop every day to try the local brews (and had to try some local pastries along the way; woe is me). Even the bad coffee (e.g., free hotel coffee) was good in Portland.
  • Fish and chips and an IPA in a brew pub.
  • Hauling Miles around the Portland art museum. He didn’t let me stay as long as I might have liked, but he seemed to enjoy the portraiture. He likes looking at faces.
  • The MAX light rail system, especially the fareless square that includes downtown and our hotel. We bopped around all over the place.
  • The Bijou Café, where Denny had the best cheeseburger of his life. I had a bite. It was freaking awesome. My sandwich was good too, but his was better.
  • The gorgeous beach at Cannon Beach, featuring Haystack Rock.
  • The friendly bunnies on the grounds of our Cannon Beach hotel (photo credit: Denny)
  • Just relaxing with my family.

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