Friday, October 30, 2009

Binky Baby

My baby is a binky lovin' fool.  When we first introduced her to them (WAY before we thought we would...), we really had no idea how much she'd love them.

Some folks continually caution us to take them from her now.  Personally, I don't have an issue with her loving them.  We'll deal with the ortho issues if they happen.  If.  As her Mama (and thus the ultimate rule maker, besides Daddy, of course), I'm okay with her having a "transitional" object.  She doesn't cling to a lovey all day long.  If her binky is her lovey, fine by me.

At our Pediatrician's recommendation, we keep several binkys in her bed at night, so that if she loses one, she has many to "find".  Consequently, I commonly wake her up to find a binky in her mouth and one in both hands.  It's pretty darn cute.

Her favorite binky related game is to have one of us put the binky in our mouth and let her grab it with her own (which is also the best way to get a sloppy baby kiss).  She's also quite fond of trying to figure out how to carry multiple binkys at once.

The lesson for my blog readers?  If you're every watching our daughter, a sure fire way straight into her heart is to come bearing binkys.

Wha? Wha?  Don't you be takin my binkys.  They're MINE!

How many binkys can I hold?  Two, three, ten???

I can stick them on the end of my finger too?  SAH-WEET!

Lemme try!

Oh binky, how do I love thee?  Let me count the ways....

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Helpin Mama

Lately Madelyn has taken a whole new interest in the laundry basket.  This is what it looks like when a little Miss wants to help her mama fold clothes...

Let me just climb in here and see what we've got...

Wait...what I really wanted was out there...what do I do now?

DOH! come help me!

Maybe if I chew on my shoe,  Mama will buy me more.  Hey, it works for dogs!

It goes like this, Mama....don't you know anything?!?!

Look at me mama, I can fold clothes AND carry my shoes around, I'm a multitasker!

Sand Man

In case you were wondering what 60 sand bags looks like....

Friday, October 23, 2009

Enough Already!

Jim and I went to the meeting King County had for our specific neighborhood last night.  It wasn't nearly as informative as I was hoping it was going to be.  The planner they had there has a great deal of experience in flooding issues, but is new to our area and had not even walked our neighborhood.  So, after a period of general questions, it was more along the lines of "what do you think we could do to help mitigate the damage". 'bout ya'll build a levy on our side of the river!?!?  Say what?  It's already been decided that it's more feasible to protect the other side and let ours flood?  Great, thanks for the help.

One thing that did come up was the possibility of them doing a sand dump in our neighborhood so we could sand bag without having to make the trips back and forth to the more regional sand bagging facilities.  Sand bagging is not going to do Jim and I a lot of good unless the flooding is very minor - there is no way we can sandbag around our entire home and keep the flood waters out.  If the flooding comes hard and the river rises to the worst case scenario flood levels, the engineers have equated the strength and volume of the entire river at that point to 4 railroad trains stacked two wide and two high coming at us at 40 miles per hour.  Nothing but elevation is going to protect you from that kind of power.  The worst case scenario flood level is at 70 feet above sea level.  Our home sits at 64.  What we can do, however, is have sand bags ready to cover our air vents from the crawl space and the doors.  That way, if it is just a foot of water instead of six feet, we could try to keep it out of the house.  The garage would go, but the house might possibly stay dry.

The one other interesting piece of news we found out is that if we flood more than 4 to 5 times, the FEMA regulated insurance we have on our home will buy us out and turn our land into green space.  Since the Army Core of Engineers say it will take them 4 to 5 years to fix the damn if (notice I said if) they get proper funding, realistically, it could be a lot longer than that.  So...good news folks, we only have to flood 5 times and we're out for good.  :::sigh::::

It's so surreal, making decisions about what you realize you're going to have to sacrifice if push comes to shove and what you're going to try and save.

But I digress (I know...shocking)....

The real thing on my mind this morning is the amount of literature and TV entertainment that seems to be coming my way lately in which children are either in harm's way or harmed themselves.  The last three episodes of Grey's had children getting hurt or losing a parent.  Same with Private Practice.  Even the books I'm reading...the last two have had children or their parents put in very difficult emotional situations.

What's with that?  I've always been a kid person and thus more easily affected by stuff like that, but now that I have Madelyn it just kills me.  It can bring me to the "ugly cry" (thanks Oprah, I love that term) thinking about her being in a similar situation.  On last night's Grey's, the major story line was about a young mother in for what seemed to be minor injuries.  When they turned major, her very young soon was off to the side crying, watching his mama suffer.  I can't even imagine Madelyn in that position.

It's enough to turn me off of my two favorite shows and stop reading for awhile.  Since...we've got some packing to do and furniture to move, that's probably not a bad plan. 

But in the meantime, hey Hollywood, lay off the kids for awhile!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Teaser Pic

So....Jim has some editing of the shots to do and we've got a busy weekend ahead of us, so I don't know when that will get done.

But in the meantime, I couldn't not post this adorable picture - edited or not.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Heavy Heart

Remember that Green River Flooding I mentioned earlier today? I just left a planning meeting for our neighborhood in which city officials came to talk to us specifically. Things do not look good for our little group - especially our house.

At the end of the meeting, as I was looking at the projection lines and I pointed out our house to one of the gentlemen there, he said, "ma'am, you need to prepare for the very real possibiity that your house will be under 4 -5 feet of water at some point this winter".

Remember that sandbagging I mentioned? Scratch that, I'll be up the hill and as far away as I can possibly be.

Stupid Shutterfly

I have a love/hate relationship with that site.

For whatever reason, if I add more than one album post, it screws up the previously posted album.

So I'll have to parcel 'em out to you one day at a time.


September 2009 - Boise Idaho

Catchin' Up has been a little hectic in the last two and half months. If I ever thought I was busy before, this motherhood of a (now 9 month old!?!?!!) is a whole new personal high in the busy department. I truly, truly do not know how working moms of multiple children manage without a nanny or a maid.

And honestly, I don't even know where to start....

Work has been insanely busy - and it's good to be involved in an exciting projects - but working 65 hour weeks when you're also trying to keep up and home and with your baby girl makes for one tired, stressed out mama. And one dirty house (though my hubsters has been a champ about helping out). One neglected blog. Many, many neglected friends (whom I'm hoping understand, since most of them are working mommies themselves). More than a handful of neglected relatives (who I hate neglecting the most, after Jim and Madelyn). Dying house plants. A Weight Watchers plan that is just that, a plan, not an action. And a long list of personal to dos. Oh - and a computer that died and has now been replaced (which adds more to the "to do" list....Learn Windows 7, get computer set up). Happily, though, we released the system I've been working on for two years (TWO YEARS!) and thus far (day two) it seems to be working very, very smoothly. littlest munchkin. She is growing so quickly I just don't know what to do! It's exciting and makes me sad all in the same breath! She's definately not a tiny baby anymore (though she is tiny...she just had her 9 month appointment - she's in the 25th percentile for height, but only 5th percentile for weight. She is still my long, lean baby. Go figure). She's absolutely her mama's daughter - she is a VERY independent girl. Very. And I applaude that. Unless we're talking about changing clothes or diapers (which is something she hates the most - she does NOT like not being in control of her body).'s not so helpful to have a very indpendent girl.

She's ----->thisclose<------- to standing on her own and walking. Since our family vacation to Idaho in September, when she really started pulling herself to standing in earnest, she's been practicing those skills on the couch - and she can now walk around the entire edge of the coffee table if properly motivated (by toys, not food....which is good in the long run - but completely unlike her mama). She's started on finger foods - and not just puffs. She's moved on to Veggie Bootie (a hit), cheese cubes (a REALLY big hit), sliced fruit (the soft kind, bananas, pears, etc), pasta (not a hit....which just floors me), hamburger (a hit at first and now...not so much). We keep experimenting with things we eat that we can start feeding to her.

She's very talkative - especially when she's doing something she doesn't want to do (like letting her mama change those diapers).

She's completely mobile. No more army crawling for her....she's been full on crawling since September and can scoot around pretty darn fast. She's much rather have us carry her, which I think goes to the independent thing, oddly enough. Down low she can't see what's going on. Up high, she can survey the action and decide what she wants to do next - and then, by golly, we better get her there to do whatever it is she wants to do!

She cuddles her lovies (though she doesn't want to take them with her during the day), she is lost without her binkie (and I'm not ready to deal with that anytime soon....I'm okay with it for the near and far future) and her Daddy is still her absolute favorite thing in the world.

She's sleeping through the night (yeah!), though I'd be lying if I didn't say I wished she would sleep well in bed with me. I'd have her in there every night snuggling away. However, being the every independent girl she is, she actually sleeps better in her crib. In her own room. Far from her mama. The mama who is alone most nights and imagines wicked people breaking into the house and stealing her adorable baby. I really do read too many dramatic stories for my vivid imagination.

She had her first serious cold and fever that turned into an ear infection. It wasn't as bad as some of my friends deal with...but I will say that one feels pretty helpless when they're trying to soothe a sick baby. I don't envy anyone who has a seriously sick child - it has to be absolutely heartrending.

And she's still got the most amazingly beautiful smile I've ever seen. It just lights up my whole world.

Around the house, Jim and I have been trying to prepare for the eventual flooding of the Green River this winter. If you've never been to my house, you might not know that our house is about 500 feet from the Green River, give or take 100 feet. We're holding out hope that it's not going to be bad as the Army Core of Engineers have been been warning it will be and that, at most, we're talking messy streets or sewer back ups. But when major players in the Kent Valley start building flood retaining walls around their businesses, you have to pay attention. So, we've purchased flood insurance, are making plans for what we'll do when word comes we need to evacuate, starting to move our irreplaceables to the upstairs, and knowing we need to clean out the garage (because if the garage floods, but the house doesn't flood, cleaning up icky chemicals would be a hazard - especially with a baby in the house), and thinking about what I'd do if word came in the middle of the night that we had X number of hours to evacuate and Jim wasn't around. Part of me would want to sand bag my little brains out and part of me says Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200. Proceed immediately to in-laws with baby and clothes and formula in tow.

As much as I'd love to do some remodeling and have insurance money help pay for that....the reality of such a clean up effort on such a global (or rather, neighborhood) scale is not something I care to deal with.

And on a sad note...for those of you who've known me longer than others....I finally had to let my little boy go. And it tears me up just saying that. George was my best friend and constant companion for the last 15 years. Not having him around the house at night, when I'm alone has been really, really tough. I'm a fairly independent person myself. Except for at night. I really like some companionship at night or my imagination goes in directions that are not comforting. Not having him great me at the door when I come home is surreal. The entire experience is just surreal. I keep feeling like he's just hiding from me and he'll show up in one of his favorite spots at any time.

But it was time - even if I didn't want to admit it. Even if I wasn't ready and had been left to my own devices would not have taken him in, he was ready. The toughest part was that the week before hand, he was doing great. No messes. No sick kitty. Playing and romping just like his old self...with no idea what was coming. But it did come and it was over quickly, with him in my arms singing his favorite song to him. And my "cats are a pain in the butt and I'm tired of stained carpet" husband was sobbing right along with me.

I've often wondered what I would do when it came time. I've always feelt so guilty that I didn't stay with Cassie in her last minutes...that I couldn't man up and be a good kitty mama. I've felt bad that I didn't have a nice spot to bury her or the money to have her cremated and returned to me. So, I feel better that I could do that for George. I know that he's just an animal, as was Cassie, but they were both my best friends and companions during a time that my life was not so steady and I wasn't as stable as I am now. While I have absolutely amazing friends and a wonderful husband and a fantastic set of parents and sibiling, only George was with me when I was scared as a bugger on a plane to Korea and wondering what I was going to do, only George was with me during my worst breakups and new experiences. Only George remembers what it's like to drive across country in a car with all of your belongings (okay...Dad and Drew were there for that too). George kept vigil during some pretty intense all nighters getting thesis papers ready and craming for the next big test. George was there when I was so broke I had two jobs and no money to do anything but sit and hang out with my cat. So even when I felt like I was all alone, I wasn't. I had George. And now I don't - and I'm not quite sure how to deal with that sometimes. So, while I asked my in-laws if I could bury him on their (flood free) property, I'm just not ready for that. He sits in a little urn on our fireplace (at the suggestion of said "cats are a pain in the butt" husband - who still tears up when we talk about George). It's small enough that most people wouldn't even notice it. But it'll stay there until I can let go all the way.

Not having to deal with a geriatric getting blind and deaf cat is a bit of a relief in some instances (no more kitty litter is nice while I have a crawling baby) and I wouldn't want another cat until we're either done with babies or the next baby (who does not exist yet for the Grandparents reading the blog) is no longer crawling, mostly I just miss my friend. And I hope that some day my daughter is able to talk her Daddy into another kitty. Because going through life without a constant furry friend who loves you no matter what just isn't the same.

The next set of posts are going to be various pictures I've uploaded to our Shutterfly account...because I'm lazy - and the easiest way to post them is to do it via Shutterfly instead of loading directly into this post.

Enjoy the pictures :)