Zuzu Day- Our Star

Our little star is feeling much brighter these days. Over the weekend her fever finally abated. While we didn’t make it to see Santa Claus this year; we did have a tree decorating party, an ornament party, a card sending party, a present wrapping party  and a cookie decorating party. And for those that might read this and feel left out- don’t- the party was pretty much just the good cheer and enthusiasm with which we did those things over the weekend. Our dear girl manages to find joy in the ordinariness of household activities. Did I already mention the dishwasher loading party, the laundry folding party, the kitchen and pantry sweeping parties that happen routinely here? The celebrations of most Christmas loving folks- ie- going to see Santa- are more traumatizing then fond-memory-making in nature for dear Zuzu.  I’ll take cheerful sweeping and song-filled table setting anyday from our little Cinderella.  Not to mention the plus of Santa having tried to get her to not cry by offering her candy canes has caused her to think that is what she should ask for for Christmas! We can handle that!

.Our first year I didn’t find a Santa until the week before Christmas. I was driving past a Burger King that had a sign up. So we raced home and donned her holiday outfit and ran back to duck in for a photo-op. They actually had a pretty tree set up just to the left of Santa, but the “Elf” angled the shot with the booths in back. Then Santa made a quip about her being so cute he could take her back to the North Pole with him and I grabbed the baby in a heat of new mother hormones and left. A week later I called back inquiring about the photo. They didn’t ask who we were- apparantly we were the only sorry takers for their offerings.  2007- Take 2- our little school had up a sign about a private photo session with Santa at a local dentist’s office. Zuzu was excited by all the dental equipment. She came around the corner, took one look at Santa and screamed. He was kind and tried singing to her and then finally suggested I come sit by him as well. I did, she turned around and saw him behind us and what you see below is the results. That’s what Momma gets for taking a kid to the dentist for her Santa visit. 2008- Take 3. We talked about Santa all morning and were meeting up with her BFF Sophie and her family at a local Reindeer Run/Pancake Breakfast where Sophie’s mom was running. We waited for her to finish and milled around Santa watching him greet little girls and boys and hand out candy canes. We made attempts to get close 3 or 4 times with Zuzu turning around and marching back to me and demanding I acquire her candy cane for her. I insisted if she sat by Santa he would give her one. I think Santa had had enough of our loitering by this time as well. She went up briefly, snatched the candy and held out her arms for me to save her. After the previous two years I can hardly blame her. We did try again one more time last year at  one of the musems light drive-through displays. We again talked about Santa all day, during dinner, on the drive over, through the lights display and as we hurried up to get in line. She even talked about how he would give her a candy cane and she would sit by him while we waited. When we got to the front of the line she again took one look at him and swiftly turned around proclaiming, “I no sit on his lap”. So we got a nice family portrait that includes a 7 month old in-utero Quail to come. I’m fairly certain Zuzu is already more relaxed about this Christmas with the lack of fat men in red suits and white beards offering her candy for her secret wishes and I can hardly blame her. It is such a mixed message.

Gratitude Journal

1. Andy Williams

2. H1N1 vaccinations

3. babies who listen and toddlers who don’t always listen

4. daydreaming of meals to come

5. Eggnog

6. dancing with the baby to Christmas carols

7. watching the toddler dance her heart out to Andy William’s version of Jingle Bells

8. Christmas presents wrapped and under the tree

9. a toddler feeling well enough to protest loudly and often

10. a grinning Buddha of a baby

11. Summer’s help

12. a festive work lunch

13. a new knit wool stocking for the Quail

14. eating the chocolates in the Advent calendar

15. weisswurst with red peppers and sweet onions

16. Jodi Piccoult stories on cd

17. The Quail signing “more”

18. The Quail reaching out to take her bottle from me with a grasping single hand

19. cuddly middle-of-the-night breathing treatments with a most snuggly baby

20. stocking stuffers

21. sleeping in till 8am

Fave-O-Lit Friday



Going to Bed

by George Bilgere

I check the locks on the front door
               and the side door,
make sure the windows are closed
               and the heat dialed down.
I switch off the computer,
               turn off the living room lights.

I let in the cats.

               Reverently, I unplug the Christmas tree,
leaving Christ and the little animals
               in the dark.

The last thing I do
               is step out to the back yard
for a quick look at the Milky Way.

               The stars are halogen-blue.
The constellations, whose names
               I have long since forgotten,
look down anonymously,
               and the whole galaxy
is cartwheeling in silence through the night.

               Everything seems to be ok.

Quail Day-Milestones Notes

The Quail remains fever free! We are a little concerned about her wheezing. When she went back to the pediatrician for a post hospital visit on monday and she was still wheezing. We were told to just keep up the “breathing treats” and they’ll check her in a week. In the meantime that little rugrat has gone ahead and made a couple of developmental leaps while she’s been under the weather. Referential gazing has started. You know, when you point at the balloon and say, “Look at the balloon!” and by George they do! That would be a true example. My dear work team sent her a bear and balloon in the hospital and it was the first thing that I was able to point at and get her to look where I was pointing! Yay! I’m aware of this term because it was the one area she was behind in when we had her Speech and Language evaluation a few weeks ago and I’ve been watching out for it ever since.

The second I haven’t witnessed myself, but per Lovey- the dropsies have begun as well. You know when you hand a baby something and they drop it off their tray and watch it go down and then look up at you? You know how most parents get annoyed as this little play is reenacted with the same vigor as opening night, day after day? Well here in our house we applaud her with aplomb! It shows some object permanence and an interest in learning about cause and effect.

We also have had intermittent mmmmm sounds. It started at one of the last OT feeding sessions when Kathy was saying mmmmmmm to her as she fed her along with Momma and More and we heard the little rumble reiterated from her tiny mouth. We haven’t gotten it again since, but we’re listening!

The dear little Quail is home with Lovey now. Nana had to return to her life yesterday and we are oh so grateful for her time, her compassion and her company. Both the girls got good quality one-on-one time with their dear Nana and that was the best unexpected gift of the season we could hope for!

corner view: books

Oh the books we do look at!
Oh the books we will read!
We hoard them for cooking, for biking, for camping and growing each seed.
We spy them in every hidden nook and cranny
Lovingly given by each dear Auntie and Granny…
Even a sweet book nestled in the tree,
hung  by a most studious  Elf
Perhaps he meant  it for the kitchen
to join our cookbooks collecting on the pantry shelf
There are books in the car,
Books that travel both near and far.
The baby eats books, the toddler packs them in her bag
Even our new brother-in-law uses them to prop his Christmas tree
when it begins to sag.
We buy them where we find them- library, thrift & Amazon galore.
Why, we will even buy them at the hardware and grocery store!
Oh the books we do look at!
Oh the books we will read!
We never are without them…
We live by their lead.
For more corner views of books around the world:

caitlin, joyce, ani, kim, natsumi, epe, kaylovesvintage, trinsch, c.t., jeannette, outi, ritva, francesca, state of bliss, jennifer, dana, denise, cabrizette, bohemia girl, isabelle, amber, a girl in the yellow shoes, mister e, janis, kari, jgy, skymring, elizabeth, allison, lise, cate, crescent moon, erin, otli, ida, caroline, lisa, dorte, kimmie, la lune dans le ciel, nicola, malo, vanessa, britta, april, b, kyndale samantha, karen, kristina, goldensunfamily, sophie, janet, mcgillicutty, aimee, sunnymama, jenell, britta, juanita, pamela, inna, daan, myrtille, cris, ibb, jodi, gillian, travelingmama