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Archive for January, 2009

Yi Dianr

I promise I’m not ignoring you. I know I’ve been a bad blog friend of late. It’s just that we’re switching houses. Little by little. And if you don’t hear from me for a few days next week, it will undoubtedly be due to the fact that our internet service has not been connected at the new house, because we have one phone company around here. And they take as long as they darned well please.

I’ve hauled and unpacked three van loads thus far. I like the moving and unpacking in turns. It’s much nicer than facing a pile of boxes and jumbled furniture all at once. That part starts tomorrow.

It looks like, for once, we will not be moving in a snowstorm. We won’t have to shovel the driveway every half hour. We won’t have to slip and break our tailbones on ice while carrying kitchen knives. We might have a mundane, three-block move!

As I thought of this, it dawned on me that I never imagined I would ever have to worry about things like snowstorms and ice and mud, back when I was used to enjoying 70 degree Southern California winters. And then I thought, How the heck do people live like this?! How the heck am I living here?! And I realized that I’m really not living here: The inside of my house is Southern California. The outside is completely foreign. (You neighbors might be chipping your car out of an ice block right now, but I live in Burbank, thank you very much.) If we ever migrate to Jason’s ancestral home in Austin, Texas, it will be all the same to me. I will wave out my California window at all of our Texan acquaintances, and I will be shocked and offended when I step out the front door into the sticky, Austin heat.

No offense intended toward you Texan nationalists. But I realized tonight that underneath their apathetic exterior, Southern Californians can be loyalists every bit as fierce. I’m spoiled by mountains and oceans and the stalky, white poppies that bloom in the dead of winter. No matter where or how often we move, it’s always going to be home to me.

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First Things First

Jonah (age 5): Mommy, are we moving today?

Me: No, Jonah, we’ve got a few days yet.

Jonah: Can’t we move something today?

Me: No, Jonah. Not today.

Jonah: Couldn’t we at least move the toilet?

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Baby Food

If you’ve ever wondered how we as a society convinced ourselves that the way we’ve been feeding our babies for thousands of years was suddenly unacceptable, or lately, one option out of many, check out this article in The New Yorker.

It’s a short, sharp account of the West’s temperamental attitude toward motherhood over the last three hundred years. In the span of those three centuries, we’ve swung from one extreme: practically deifying a mother’s breasts, to the opposite extreme of considering ourselves too evolved to lactate at all. Now we’re somewhere mid-swing, of course. We’re a fickle folk.

Here’s the link:

“Baby Food”, by Jill Lepore

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Moving Right Along

So it looks like we’ll actually pack up our actual belongings and actually move in like a week, actually. For reals. The guys from Chico had no other jobs to do, so they set the house up in record time, and the county people were slightly more cooperative than usual (although they still gave Jenn an aneurysm, almost). All that’s left is the carpet installation and the final okay from county. We’re adding an extra week to our thirty day notice, just in case county causes any more delays. Or in case the snow decides to close the highway. Or in case ________________. (Fill in the blank with unforeseeable circumstance.)

And we’ll have an extra bedroom (school room!) and extra bathroom, and the extra dining space we’re going to need as soon as Ella joins us at the table, and it will be new and pretty and have a front porch for summertime sitting.

But first comes the part where we move. I still don’t quite believe that’s going to happen. But it actually will. I think.

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And I totally forgot that we bought that little camcorder for the girls last year. Then I remembered. So I borrowed it.

And yes, that is a Christmas tree in the background. And yes, we are actually moving next week. And yes, I probably should start packing, or something. I’ll just get right on that.

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About Ella

It’s been a while since I posted an Ella update. She’s way past four months old already, so I kind of missed that little mile marker. Even so, it seems wrong to mention her without pictures, but those will just have to wait until a replacement camera recommends itself. So in the meantime, here are the latest useless tidbits of Ella information:

  • Ella blows raspberries like a pro. ALL DAY LONG. It’s her new favorite form of communication. More than babbling, cooing, or crying. Much more.
  • The child does not cry. If she cries, she is, A. seriously injured, B. ready to get out of her swing and not able to reach anyone by blowing raspberries, C. alone and bored. To stop the crying, I must, A. nurse her, B. appear in the room, C. acknowledge her verbally. After that, it’s back to raspberries.
  • Ella spent two hours in the nursery for the first time ever at MOPs two weeks ago. It was hard to leave her. I told the workers that she doesn’t cry. I told them to page me immediately if she even fusses . I’m sure they thought I was a neurotic octopus of a mother. But they paged me as soon as she started to fuss, ten minutes later. I came back, nursed, and put her in the swing with her blanket. Then I left. She was a happy baby for the rest of the morning. That first separation gets harder and harder with each baby we have. Shouldn’t it be the opposite?
  • Ella is not ready for solid food. She likes to “taste” what I’m eating, as in stick her tongue out and touch it as lightly as possible. But tonight I tried putting a tiny smudge of banana on her tongue and she lost her breakfast, lunch, and dinner in one big heave. So none of that for a while. I’m happy with the unsmelly poop for now, anyway.

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Mine is at the church, playing a World War I strategy game called Axis and Allies with all the other menfolk. Last time they finished just before 1 a.m.

I thought, Surely it’s just the shiny newness. Next time they’ll cut it off at a decent hour and finish up some other time.

It’s 1:15.

How did we all manage to marry such indomitable geeks?!

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