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Proud to report that Pumpkin, who discovered her feet a mere ten days ago, can now put them in her mouth.  

Also, trying to blog daily this month is crazy difficult.  


Can it be NaBloPoMo every other day?

Too many priorities.   Trying to avoid the trap from everything being a priority (nothing will be a priority).

At this very moment, sleep has to be the priority.  Pumpkin is sleeping in her crib.  Bug and Squish are snuggled in their bottom bunk and sleeping.  

So I suppose this blog post is just a very long way of writing, "good night."



Monday mornings are that time when I look at Pumpkin and realize how short the weekend was.  

Then I take her to daycare.  

And Monday evenings are that time when I realize how long weekdays are.  

Then I nurse Pumpkin and put her to bed.   

When Bug was a baby, I worked part-time (four days a week) until he was one.  I remember the night I did the math in my head while I nursed him at bedtime.  I calculated the number of waking hours he would be spending with the nanny and compared it to the number he had with me. I was okay because I had more.  

I worked part-time (four days a week) until Squish was almost nine months old. He and I had Fridays together just the two of us for months even after I returned to work.  

I can't afford to work four days a week now.  

 I know I am actually really lucky in so many ways, but Mondays just leave me feeling a little broken-hearted lately.  


Bright spot

When I wasn't checking social media for answers today, I was wrangling the boys.  

Into swim clothes
To swim lessons (Squish went; Bug abstained)
Out of swim clothes 
Into the car after Pumpkin started to go berzerk in her stroller on the playground 
Up the stairs to our front door
And so on and so forth

In the afternoon we decided to go to the grocery store for chocolate chips so that we could make cookies.  

More wrangling. 

Then in the middle of it all, Bug started singing a silly song while he danced in a circle around me.  

In my arms, Pumpkin was entranced.  She loved his song and dance and started to laugh. Her sweet, five-month-old belly laugh.  

I looked down to my right, and Squish was sitting cross-cross-applesauce with his palms facing upward meditating.  

That was my favorite moment today.  Absurd and light filled.   And I am  grateful for it.  



Keeping France in thoughts and prayers tonight.  


The bounce back

I offered to pick up all three munchkins today because my husband was making all of us a delicious dinner. 

First stop - Bug.  

His after school program takes place in a big gymnasium.  On one side of the gym, kids can draw, read, and have snacks.  On the other side, they usually play a sport.  

I didn't see Bug on the drawing side so went to check the sports side.  Not there either.  

I went back to the first side and found him sitting quietly, looking at the floor.  I asked how he was doing, and he said he felt sick.  

To his stomach.  

A long night of barfing flashed before my eyes, and I felt queasy myself. 

I brought Bug home to my husband and headed back out to get Squish and Pumpkin. 
Squish was easy to get today. He was in full Diligent Helper mode and went with me to get Pumpkin from the infant room. 

Pumpkin was tired but her usual, dear self.  Then one of her "teachers" told me that Pumpkin gets angry after she finishes bottles during the day, and that she needs more to eat.  

Nothing like feeling inadequate at the end of a drizzly fall day.  

Fifteen minutes later, when we were all home again, Squish asked, "Where is the ukulele?"

"The ukelele?!?!??"

"THE UKELELE I GOT FROM SCHOOL!!!!!!  WHERE IS IT?!?!!?" Squish explained. 

"Sweetie, it must be at school.  I didn't realize you won it this week."


For about a minute this evening, it felt like everything was completely falling apart.  Oldest kid on the verge of the barfs.   Middle kid apoplectic about a ukelele.  And starving baby.  

Somehow the night actually turned out just fine. 

Pumpkin was a happy baby, blowing raspberries while I ate dinner.  Hardly a baby in need. 

Squish was a happy monkey, playing a rhyming puzzle game with my husband after dinner.  

Bug was a happy kid, practicing writing in a notebook while he curled up under a blanket in the family room.  

The daily tribulations sometimes seem to pile one on top of another until it isn't that easy to shrug them off.  But I think I can see (this evening, at least) that what goes down must go up around here.  Thank goodness.  


From the bedtime files

After rocking and nursing Pumpkin, it was finally time to put her in her crib.

With Bug and Squish, I often raced to this moment every night with an eye on the glass of wine that awaited.

With Pumpkin, I am in no hurry.  Ever.  I don't hope the day will come to an end.  I don't look at each developmental milestone as some kind of token we collect to be traded in for a big prize.  I hold her, we rock, she dozes, and we breathe.


A little green

Late fall is not exactly my favorite time of year. 

Of course I love the cooler temperatures and the clothes and boots.  I think pumpkins and mums on doorsteps are cute.  Butternut squash is delicious.

I live in New England, and the people here love fall.  It's their Time.  Summer is too hot for them.  Winter is brutal.  Spring is nice.  But they love fall.  They love driving around and looking at trees.  They love pumpkin spice lattes.  They love apple picking. 

I get it.  Those are lovely traditions.  But all I want to do is to pull everyone aside and whisper, "Can't you see what's happening?"

What I see happening is days shortening so much that the sun sets in the afternoon.  (The afternoon!)  I see trees with no leaves.  I see grass turning brown.

But we are settled here for many, many good reasons.  We are not moving to warmer climes for at least thirty years.  So I need to make peace with my regional climate.  And in an effort to restore the glass-half-full mentality, I decided to buy some indoor plants.  I thought a little green in our home would help.

Yesterday at the store, I picked up a very cute mini-hydrangea plant.  The clerk asked if I had any questions.

"Will this do well indoors for the winter?" I asked.

She said, "Yes.  You need to water that a lot."

"Okay!  Sounds good!" I exclaimed.

Then she looked at me as if she knew that I had not had the time to replace the shampoo that ran out a few days ago.  She seemed somehow aware of the fish that I couldn't keep alive a few months ago.

And she said, "Like every day."

So I bought the plant anyway because I am a secret optimist.



On the mend

I will not let strep and exhaustion throw me off of pursuing this weird little goal I set.  One post every day this month.  Today's is done.  Now I can go to sleep.  


Second sick day

Typing this as I nurse Pumpkin for her bedtime.  

Chills, fever, aches, and sore throat.  Strep.  As an adult.  Sucks.  Not like serious illness sucks.  Just like stuck in traffic for two days and afraid of getting your kids stuck in traffic sucks.  


Sick day

Technically this post keeps me working toward my goal of a post a day.  


COMMUNITY NEWS: Hip Hop Nutcracker

Just got a note with the press release below.  Take a look, and let me know if you go!

“The Hip Hop Nutcracker” Poised To Become Holiday Classic 

Show Kicks Off 12-City Tour with “King of Rap” Kurtis Blow in NYC

October 28, 2015 (New York, NY) —  On November 20 and 21 “The Hip Hop Nutcracker” returns to the United Palace (4140 Broadway at 175th Street, NY, NY) to kick off a 12-city tour, including Miami, Atlanta, St. Paul, Charleston, Charlotte, and Moscow, Russia.

The show features the music from Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker”, 11 dancers, DJ Boo, an electric violinist, and digital scenery that complements the adapted storyline, which locates the action to New Year’s Eve in a contemporary WashingtonHeights community in New York City. The adaptation is respectful of the traditional narrative with references to beloved touchstones like the Mouse King and growing tree.

The production inserts the vocabulary of hip hop movement to what has traditionally been a classical ballet, broadening the audience for the art form. The variety of styles represented (breaking, popping, locking, etc.) serve as a history lesson of hip hop dance.

“What better way to bring people together during the holidays than to combine different popular art forms to reach as wide an audience as possible, then dip this classic story in a contemporary setting that celebrates community,” said Mike Fitelson, executive director of the United Palace of Cultural Arts who adapted the story and is supplying the imagery for the scenery. “This production is the perfect symbol of how we are combining old and new to reinvent the United Palace. It has become a new holiday tradition here.”


How many toys is the right number of toys?

Yesterday, a friend posted something online about Christmas presents - the suggestion that Christmas should involve four gifts:

- Something a kid wants;
- Something a kid needs;
- Something to wear;
- Something to read.

Apparently, this suggestion has been wandering around the internet for several years now.  But, always late to the party, I just found out about it.

Here were my four immediate reactions (in order of experience):


Fashionably late to NaBloPoMo

The fact that I am only a day late to the NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) party feels like a genuine accomplishment these days.

Today's post is very short - a simple declaration that I will be blogging every day for (the rest of) the month of November.

Look out, world.

NaBloPoMo November 2015