Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pictures We Did Not Use for the Christmas Cards

Sorry for the absence. We have had computer problems. Hopefully this will give you a Rosalind fix. And about the Christmas cards, we mailed them with no return addresses...or stamps. They might be a bit late since we are starting again.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Her New Favorite Pasttime

She makes this face every few minutes right now for a variety of reasons. If you were sitting next to her you would see that she puts so much effort into squishing all her various parts together that her jaw clinches and her head trembles. Hysterical.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

All of the food at this years thanksgiving turned out exactly like we hoped and expected. That might be a first. I did not take pictures this year, though. Not even of Rosalind. I thought it would be great fun to feed her her first thanksgiving meal, but possibly due to a returning (for the third time!) ear infection she was not into food. She spit out a bite of mashed potatoes and that was pretty much the extent of it.

As a kid I tormented my parents every thanksgiving over tradition. We had to use the good dishes that stayed in the china cabinet and fold up real cloth napkins and put candles in the middle of the table. I was insistent, and they obliged. Due to a complete lack of chairs or space, we ate this years meal around the coffee of paper plates. I have to admit, it didn't make the food any less tasty and I was pleased with the easier clean up. A successful holiday for us. Hope yours was as well. Now for some pie...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Books and Dates and Stuff

I wrote this post a few days after we went to this event. It is a couple of weeks old now, but I forgot to post it because I thought I would change it a bit. That did not happen. Is it Thanksgiving Break yet? I lost all motivation for anything except turkey and dressing about four days ago.

I picked up a David Sedaris book when I was eighteen and needed something to read on my flight to Europe and the subsequent train travel from country to country. Until that point an avid reader of romances and classics from Southern Small Town, USA, I didn't really know what I was looking for at the bookstore. I had long been dissatisfied with what I was reading but had no clue how to go about changing things.

So a rushed trip to a Barnes and Noble and I desperately sought out the Bestsellers aisle. What a novel concept! The title caught my eye, Me Talk Pretty One Day, and that was enough. I bought it and something else I barely recall anymore and threw them into my luggage. I didn't pick it up again until we were on the Chunnel. I remember reading the first story and continually flipping it over and skimming pages. What is this? Is it fiction? Non-fiction? Short stories? I was out of my league. A few more stories in and I was mentally widening my eyes and giggling. The author is gay! Oh my! Then the book started chronicling the authors time living in France. And there I was traveling through France!

Needless to say, on several occasions I was in an absolute fit of tears laughing so hard at his descriptions of rude Americans in Europe or even himself fumbling with language. It was the perfect thing to have stumbled into reading for that trip, but it was also just one of the funnier things I had ever read. I became a Sedaris devotee at that point.

Sergio and I always turn the radio up when we hear Sedaris reading on NPR, no matter how many times we have read the same story. We read all the books. The articles. And for years we have narrowly missed his book tour readings by moving across the country right before or after he has just been somewhere.

Then last Monday Sergio sent me an email saying he had tickets to Walton Arts Center to hear David Sedaris read. He sweetly planned a whole evening, the first real date night we have had since Rosalind's impending existence was known to us. Duck turns out to be one of the best things ever, by the way.

I will never quite recapture what it was to read that book at that time in my life. When I was still so closed off to the world that every page introduced foreign realities. As somebody behind us at the reading pointed out, if there was a liberal in Washington County they were all crowded into the theater that night. Now I know what I am getting into when I read or listen to Sedaris. I am more than happy with that.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterens Day

"And I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: Whom shall I send? and who shall go for us? And I said: Lo, here am I, send me." From the book of Isaiah

These men and women died on or around November 5, 2009 at Fort Hood, TX.

Michael Grant Cahill
Justin Michael DeCrow
Frederick Greene
Amy Sue Krueger
Michael S. Pearson
Francheska Velez
Kham See Xiong
L. Eduardo Caraveo
John P. Gaffaney
Jason Dean Hunt
Aaron Thomas Nemelka
Russell Gilbert Seager
Juanita L. Warman

We lament this loss. My father served in the First Gulf War and I hope he understands my appreciation. America is better because my father is alive, it would be better it these men and women were alive.

The Business

Sergio began his own law firm a few weeks ago. The website launched yesterday. Click here to check it out.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Speaking Assertively on A Subject I'm Ignorant About

I just got off of the phone with a certain pediatric conglomerate in the Northwest Arkansas area. Rosalind has a bit of a cough that has been persistent and seems to be bothering her, nothing serious, and she is due for her next well-baby check up. In any case, I called to see if we could get her in to see someone today or tomorrow about the cough. Because of the structure of the pediatric trust this means getting an appointment at the urgent care clinic. While scheduling the visit I asked if we could go ahead and get her well-baby check up done at the same time, this seemed to me like an efficient way of getting things done, after all, they will be weighing her and asking us general medical history questions anyways, why not ask two more developmental questions and measure her height. I was informed that the urgent care clinic and the wellness clinic were in separate buildings, I said I realized this but was pretty sure they had the necessary tools in either building: you know pen, paper, and a measuring tape. I was then told that that just isn’t how it’s done; I asked to speak to an administrator. After being transferred to a voicemail, getting back to the operator, and finally getting someone on the phone I asked what the rationale was for the strict no-diagnosing a cough and asking about development in the same building policy. I was told that the doctors were only allotted a certain amount of time to see urgent care patients and that taking the extra time to complete the well baby check up wouldn’t be fair to afternoon patients. “I see, so it’s about efficiency”, I said. “Yes, exactly” the administrator responded. “So how much longer would it take to finish the well-baby”, I asked. “Probably 10 minutes.” “So this is about efficiency on your side, because having to schedule another visit and then paying for a separate visit is not efficient for me.” “Well I understand that.” “I understand you are running a business and you need to see as many patients as possible and two visits are more profitable than one, right?” “That’s true.” “Okay, thanks.”

A few of things. First, what if my child had a hard to diagnose illness, do the doctors leave mid-visit because their allotted time is up? Second, I didn’t realize doctors were now factory workers. And lastly, this seems to me to be a perfect example of why our health care system needs some change. I’m not advocating what sort of change, (readers of this blog probably have no doubt how I lean politically, but this isn’t about that) but to me this doesn’t make sense. By all means let me know why this is the best way to go or why I’m wrong, seriously I’m not in this field and I don’t really have the knowledge to make that call.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Small Town Football

This week was the school's homecoming. I have never been on the teaching end of high school homecoming. Early in the week I decided to stay relaxed and laid back which proved to be the right choice. By Friday I had only six seniors per class as they were all practicing band, cheerleading, or working on the float.
Another new aspect of the teaching end of homecoming was the "teacher skit" during the pep rally. One of the football coaches recorded a great little song entirely about our specific team and about eight of us teachers performed a dance to it. He rapped it while the other two coaches were his back up "posse." It seemed to go over quite well at the pep rally. The only thing that topped it was the pie in the face competition. The teacher that received the most money in the jar got a pie in the face. I apparently made it into the top few, but lost out to the cheerleading coach/math teacher. She is the perfect combination of loved/hated.
Friday turned out to be a gorgeous early fall day. The perfect football weather. I had promised some students repeatedly that I would go to the game. Sergio and I put Rosalind in her purple Elks finest and went. Other than being a bit on the cold side, it was storybook small town football. Sergio only slightly yelled at a rude fan once. It was justified. Most of my students fawned all over Rosalind. We won.
Teaching is not a bad gig.

All dressed up for the game.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Baby's First Tailgating

Rosalind is a champion tailgater.

First Month of School

I have had...

Flu (possibly, but most likely not the Swine variety)

Stomach bug

Pink eye...

and that is all I have to say about that.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Rosalind's a Thrushy Wean-er

Rosalind has thrush. We are giving her Gentian Violet...I think that is what it is called. This makes her mouth dark purple. Which makes everything her mouth touches dark purple. Also lavender projectile vomit. Might as well be purple for a change, I guess.

She is also almost entirely weaned. It happened sort of naturally with me going back to work and the introduction of food. I wanted to make it to six months, but since she seems perfectly content and I can enjoy spicy foods again I am not going to complain.

This morning when I dropped her off at daycare I looked down to see that she had pooped all down my shirt. This made me a few minutes late for morning duty, but it was a heck of an excuse.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Emma Grace is One

One year ago today Emma was born. We had gone to Little Rock unexpectedly to pick up the Zofran to deal with my terrible, awful, no-good morning sickness. We stayed until Emma showed up. Ever since that day Emma has been bound and determined to keep up with her older siblings in every possible way. This has manifested in walking at eight months and a love for birthday cake that can't be deterred by trash bags. I have a sneaking suspicion Rosalind and Emma will be up to no good together someday. Just a hunch.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Letter to Rosalind

Dear Rosalind,

You are a little over five months old and in the last couple of weeks you have absolutely exploded with new talents. Don't get me wrong, you have been growing and changing and learning at a pretty steady rate since you were born. Even with all of that growth, though, you still fit mostly into the category of immobile blob.

Not anymore.

You are a lean, mean (chubby, sweet?) baby food eating, rolling over, sleeping in your own bed all night, right on the verge of crawling machine. A lot of this new-found talent can be attributed to day care, and let me just say, you LOVE day care. And they love you. Which makes me happy. You have learned a sort of army crawl that gets you from place to place enough to almost follow the older kids. If you can get your hands, feet, and knees just slightly more coordinated you will be off to the races. In the meantime you do a magnificent push-up.

Since I mentioned the sleeping in your own bed thing I guess I will give the details. You have been a kind of not so great sleeper. You needed to be swaddled and using a pacifier to fall asleep, and then you wanted in our bed after the first wake-up. So I let you. But it was not ideal for either of us. Every time I moved you thought you needed to eat and then you would come unswaddled and get all kicky and punchy. I have been watching you for a couple of weeks now and noticed you don't puke in your sleep anymore and you don't really eat much at night despite the appearance that you do. So we checked out the Ferber book, took away your pacifier and swaddling blanket, and prepared for a crappy night by renting movies and making cocktails. And then you cried halfheartedly for less than fifteen minutes before passing out for five hours. You woke up and cried twice in the night and put yourself back to sleep in under ten minutes. You woke up another four or five times but simply played with your crib toy until you fell back asleep.

You continue to shock me nearly everyday. Last night was the first night I have slept alone in my bed all night since you were born. Joy!

You are great right now. Everyone you meet likes you. You even went to class with daddy one day and made friends with his classmates. I took you to work and you were taken away by some of the coworkers for hours at a time. When they brought you back you were taken over by sixth and seventh graders. The day care gets mad if we hold you out for a day because they miss you. Nobody believes that you were ever intense or unhappy in any way. I don't know how it happened but your father and I somehow produced a people person. Way to go, Rosalind.


(Please, please, please do not let me be jinxing the sleeping thing by writing about it!)


Thursday, August 20, 2009

She Fought the Law

She was tried as an adult and has been serving some prison time.

She was thrilled the day she was granted parol.

Now she makes her money as a wrestling coach.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cleaning Is Decidedly Not My Talent

When you go into teaching you really hope that you will get your own classroom one day. Most schools are so overcrowded that new teachers put their supplies on a cart and squat in other teachers rooms for awhile, dreaming about how they will decorate one day when the room is theirs.

I, on the other hand, am taking over for a person who had two classrooms. One in the middle school and one in the high school. Through no fault of this person he had to leave them completely as is for me to take over. This means I have to clean 32 years worth of stuff out of TWO classrooms.

Careful what you wish for.

I have been wondering if it is excusable to have students do my filing the first day of school, since I have hardly been able to to look at planning lessons yet. I am thinking that might be frowned upon.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Now With Words...But Just a Few

After what seemed like an eternity filled with studying Sergio finally took the Bar Exam last week. If it felt like an eternity to me then I can only imagine what it felt like to Sergio. Though it was a really useful excuse when, say, the baby was crying, or needed a bath, or woke up in the middle of the night.
"But I need to study!"
And I was all set to let him take over some of the baby night duties when he up and got a temporary associate position in the legal department of the largest retailer in the world (yes, we are aware of the irony of him getting this position). So, no night duties for Sergio.
Which brings us to our first (and probably only) visit to a daycare today. It is a little privately run place in a cute bungalow off the square. Only about ten or twelve kids and the first one we saw was running around in a cloth diaper. We had been worried some of the chain daycares wouldn't look too kindly on cloth. It felt like a good place and I think we are going to start her off going one day a week to get used to it. Then when I start substitute teaching or (fingers crossed) get a real teaching job eventually, she will go full time.
There was a time the thought of leaving her for more than an hour or so was almost crippling, but now we both seem ready. She gets bored if it is just the two of us all day, and I can't seem to get much done with her around. I am also hoping someone more strong-willed than me can get her to take a nap all alone and on a regular schedule. My goals in life have shrunk considerably.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Happy Birthday to One Funny Kid

Three years ago we were in a Kansas City, KS suburb waiting for my nephew David to show up. He finally did. Two weeks later we moved to Portland.

Geez, that was fast.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


I'm 27.  

I don't know how that happened.  

Sergio bought me the complete series of My So-Called Life.  This is a really perfect gift.  Nothing better on your 27th than getting to feel 12 again.  Oh dear.  That was fifteen years ago.  


Thursday, July 09, 2009

Baby's First Cold

Shockingly there is no place in the baby book for the first cold.  We all have it.  We just woke up yesterday with a family cold.  Fun.  

Rosalind is alternately a floppy rag doll or a WRATH BABY!  Floppy rag doll is interesting. Rosalind can't be said to be a cuddly baby on a normal day but she kind of is right now.  Angry WRATH BABY is no fun for anyone.  You can see her confusion as she cries because  her throat hurts and then cries harder because the cry made her throat hurt.  Rinse, Repeat.  

What is it with baby thermometers?  We broke down and bought a fancy forehead scanning thermometer because our two less fancy ones were difficult and inaccurate.  This one is fast, easy to use, and still probably inaccurate.  Oh well.  

One thing I can tell from this experience is that everyone should find a safe place to hide when Rosalind begins teething.  She seems to take being in pain really personally.  How dare the universe inconvenience her!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Really Late Letter

Dear Rosalind,

This letter is late I guess.  You should have gotten one every month.  Obviously you did not.  This is your three month and a couple of days letter.  You are currently sitting in your bouncy chair looking at me.  Every time I look your way you absolutely curl up with glee.  HUGE smile! Curled feet.  Hands come together.  Knees to chest.  Your happiness is evident on every part of your body.  Yes, you are a joy right now. But more importantly, I am a rock star.  I am the single greatest person on the planet.  I can do no wrong.  Your father comes in a very close second, but his inability to feed you like I can puts him at a slight disadvantage.  

I know that I will get a couple of years of this and then it will be over.  Anything based on feeding is effectively ruined when you start getting fed by the school lunch lady.  And I am almost certain that my penchant for pinching your thigh rolls or tickling your neck will only embarrass you at adolescence instead of crack you up.  Just a hunch.  

And now you are talking to me.  Very loudly.  I imagine you are saying, very sweetly, "Mother, please let me out of this chair."  When I put you in this chair you were asleep.  Something you should still be.  Sleep is a bit of problem.  You still like to eat at night pretty often, but really the problem lies in the naps.  You won't sleep during the day unless you are being held.  You will only sleep for longer than a half hour if I actually sleep with you.  Or at least pretend to sleep.  I have to admit that pretending to sleep has led to actual sleeping 100% of the time.  Bad plan.  

2 1/2 to 3 month olds are why people have kids.  If you didn't hate your car seat with a screaming passion you might be the world's most perfect baby.  Let's work on that.  You went swimming with your friend Will the other day.  To our total shock you really liked it.  You didn't laugh but it was close.  If you are wondering what makes you laugh right now it is either a rousing game of Peek a Boo or Spat the Bootie.  Ha!  I had to add that last one to embarrass you at 16.  



Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Friday, June 19, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Words, Time, None, Etc.

I should consider finding time for makeup, I think.
Does a skirt girly this outfit up?
Sleep anyway and time it can be gotten.  Nose to nose is a favorite of hers.
TV time. 

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

You Know You Want One.

Rosalind is on her third bottle of compounded Prilosec.  Berry flavored.  We discovered at the end of the last bottle that it had been compounded so poorly that the medicine was in chunks at the bottom too big to suck into the syringe.  So the new medicine was compounded here and it is beautifully smooth.  

This morning I was having trouble getting back to sleep after Rosalind's 4 am feeding and I was thinking how I would post how well she is doing with the new and improved medication.  And she is.  She spits up much more like a regular baby now, with only a few explosions.  Usually in the middle of the night after I have let her just sleep in the middle of us.  And yes, that means I wake up because I have just been blasted in the face.  Sigh.  

Anyway.  About an hour later I heard her making her strange breathy grunts and I picked her up hoping she would spit up.  Instead she promptly fell into a comfortable always.  I gave up and put her back down.  She immediately started up again. I was just about to close my eyes when she finally managed a small spit up.  From her nose.  


Sunday, May 31, 2009

Blog Spew

We are in Pocahontas this weekend. We came over so that Sergio's family could meet Rosalind, but also so that Sergio could participate in an Alumni flag football fundraiser tournament thingy. This is why I am sitting here now covered in mosquito bites and a sunburn. Don't worry, Rosalind stayed home with the grandparents.

We don't have internet at the house and when we go out in public to get some it is a strange game where one of us keeps Rosalind happy while the other manically fills out job applications and emails cover letters. Not really a situation where we can update the blog at all. Hopefully that can all change fairly soon.
So here are some updates in bullet points. Ah, bullet points...because babies are a time suck.

*Rosalind turned two months old on the 23rd. The second month is a lot more fun than the first. She smiles all the time now. No more looking at each other and asking if we thought that was a smile or not. Now we know. And it is remarkably easy to get her to smile. In fact, sometimes the best way is to leave her alone in the crib looking at her mobile. Then she just grins and coos and has a downright good time. For about twenty minutes. Not that I am complaining. I will take any twenty minutes I can get. She is getting better and better about entertaining herself for awhile here and there. This is good because I was beginning to think I might have to carry her to and from college classes one day. Rosalind also adores being outside. If all of our other tricks fail when she is in a real tizzy, then we take her outside. This has resulted in more than one restaurant meal being abandoned until cold while one of us walks with her outside. She nearly always picks mealtime to be a brat. I could go on and on about all of her newest developments, and I might in a future post, but I will move on for now. Oh, the strangest thing she has learned is the squeal/scream. She sounds like a preteen playing Bloody Mary at a sleepover. She sounds this way when she is both happy and sad. Either way, it is startling.

*Our friends gave us a baby shower not long after we got back. This also deserves its own post with pictures. There were awesome little cupcakes and candy bars with customized Rosalind Cate wrappers. The whole thing was amazing and we have really great friends.

*Sergio began Bar Review courses. I get the idea that these are not very exciting.

*The job hunts continue. We are all about nepotism and calling in favors, so don't be shy if you know anyone. You think I am joking, but I'm not.

*My eight month old niece, Emma, can walk. Obviously she is advanced. We have a video, but not on this computer. Hopefully I can post that soon.

*My other niece, Samantha, turned nine. This makes me very nearly old.

*We watched Sergio's law school graduation online sitting in the parking lot of Atlanta Bread Company. I think I am far more sad than he is that this will be his memory of law school graduation. It was nice to get to see all of our Oregon friends graduate. Congratulations to those of you who read the blog, which I think is just Josh. Hi, Josh! And congratulations to Sergio. I am very proud of you.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ignore the High Pitched Man in the Background

Here we have it, proof that Rosalind can be both calm and happy. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Portrait's of a Lady Growing Up

We have been in Fayetteville for one week and we have been busy.  We have gone to the Farmer's Market, Rick's Bakery twice, the Joe Martin Stage Race, had sushi and gelato on Dickson with friends, had a baby shower, fixed a friend's broken garbage disposal twice, and introduced the baby to Hooters, Common Grounds, and the Brew Pub.  This is more than in the last three years combined.  

And on an unrelated but happy note, Sergio got his final two grades from school.  He is officially finished with Law School.  Huzzah!

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Flash Update

We are back in Arkansas!  This deserves a longer post, but I am trying to fit this in before the baby gets upset.  The duplex we got is really great.  We love being back in Fayetteville and around our friends.  Unpacking with a baby is much slower.  And now the baby is upset...

...okay, better.  She is getting cuter and more entertaining everyday.  She smiles now and is starting to make noises that aren't crying.  I think we'll keep her.  

Monday, April 27, 2009

A Grandparent Specific Post

Exciting stuff.  Trivia:  This was the first time I voluntarily spoke on camera, though I use the term voluntarily loosely.  P.S.  If we do another video post we promise it will be more exciting. Or at least she will be awake.  

Take Her To The Zoo, Babies Love The Zoo

On Saturday Dawn and I decided it was time to introduce Rosalind to the zoo. It's hard to suggest that we went so that Rosalind could see the animals, she spent most of the time asleep in her stroller, but we were able to get her out to see a few things.

As you can see she was a bit puzzled by what she saw. Well she isn't exactly photogenic right now.

Just so everyone out there doesn't think our daughter is permanently cross eyed here are a few more pictures.