Thursday, May 19, 2011

A short blog ... well, it was supposed to be!

I'm finding it tricky to balance everything I want to do these days. After a long drag reading a book club book (Jitterbug Perfume), I've been really into reading other books I'm more interested in. I'm also working towards reading 100 books this year, which means I need to have 50 read by the end of June. Well, a few weeks ago, I was stuck at 22 or something. So, I've been plugging through some Newbury winners and some easy to read parenting books. And with the help of the last two Walking Dead installments that are in novel / volume form, I'm currently up to 37 books. It seems a bit silly in some ways to be so dedicated to something like a goal of 100 books, but as I told Mike, most of my day with Natalie isn't exactly intellectually stimulating, so a challenge like this gives me something else to call my own and get me thinking about. But, it has been a bit consuming the last little bit.

On top of that, I found The Read-Aloud Handbook at the Lewiston Library and took it out. I'm reading critically to write a detailed review. That is one of the ways I'm trying to keep my teacher side a live while I'm away from teaching. So, reading that book, taking notes, and starting the blog has also taken up a lot of my time I'd ordinarily spend on blogging.

As far as the rest of my free time, its spent one of two ways. Either I'm sleeping, or Mike and I are watching something together. Most recently, its been the first season of Dexter, which I'm hoping we are going to finish up tonight. But, since Dexter was on a pay cable channel, its episodes are ten minutes longer. So, when we watch two episodes a night, we have to start watching at least 20 minutes earlier. Again, less time to blog or read.

As far as things have been around here, in general there hasn't been too much going on. Natalie continues to do new amazing things every day. Here are a few of the latest:
  • Last night after only one book, she gave us both kisses, turned off her lamp, and climbed into bed. Very sweet and grown up, and it made us sad that we missed out on our bed time snuggling!
  • A new game has been telling me that one of her toys, usually Kitty, is sad. Then I have to hug and kiss it to cheer it up. This started after I let her cry it out for a nap. I wonder if there is a connection ...
  • She continues to say more and more. We've gotten her to say please a few times. I'm pretty impressed by her latest new word: friend. She's used it referring to her favorite toys, including a new Curious George she got at the grocery store yesterday. Other new (or newish) words: happy, duck, wall, crayon, milk, "carry me," dark, grape, fork, pants, foot, tongue. cake, pigeon, block, talk. Its so had to remember them all because she just uses them so naturally.
  • I was feeling pretty bad that Natalie can identify like any TV character she's ever seen, but not name our family. I'd tried to get her to point people out in our family album, but she always got hung up on the same people (Dada, Pa, and Nana). But the other night, Mike asked her who everyone in the whole album were, and she knew everyone! I was so impressed!
  • Lately, she's been really interested in naming body parts and colors. She also is working on putting on clothes and using her utensils. She is getting good at using one hand to hold the food and other to stab it with the fork. She's starting asking for a fork if we don't give her one. I think the spoon is frustrating her, which is adding to our oatmeal eating problem. She's also getting better about going up and down stairs holding just one hand. When she is a little taller, I think she'll be ready to try a banister.
  • New foods she's tried recently: humus, yogurt covered raisins, mustard, cheese balls, Cap't Crunch berries, Italian sausage. When a mom at a candle party I went to asked if I try to feed her well, I felt a bit guilty knowing some of those recent choices. But then she commented on another mom giving her kid those juices that are like pure sugar, and I felt better.
  • I feel like the week or so where we had great weather we got in a great routine for spending time outside. But then this week has been horrible and we haven't spent any time outside other than going to and from the car. Before, I felt a little bad that she wasn't getting any time with her toys, now I'm feeling like she is totally bored with all her toys and I need to come up with new games for us to play with them. At the same time, I feel like I've been a little disconnected and letter her do her own thing, which was fine when we were only inside for a small portion of the day, but isn't as fine when we are stuck inside for several hours in a row.
  • She drew on the wall with a crayon yesterday while Mike and I were both trying to clean up from dinner. Mike brought her back over to it and told her it was wrong. She cried and came running to me, and I told her I agreed with Daddy. She was upset for a little bit and kept walking over to it saying wall. So, I got out the magic eraser and let her help me clean it up. She seemed to like that.
As far as the pregnancy is concerned, there is only one thing to comment on. I have a horrible off and on pain in my hip / butt on the left side. I had something like this with Natalie, but it was at the way end of the pregnancy. Its pretty rough dealing with it when Natalie wants to be carried, or I have to pick up things she's dropped, and such. Sneezing, moving my foot between the gas and break, and rolling over in bed all hurt when its bad. It really sucks. We are kidding that we are going to get to hold this over William when he is older. Other than this huge annoyance, everything is great with the pregnancy. William moves a lot during certain times during the day, including a tickling startling movement by my hip last night in bed that made me jump. We continue to read books about babies with Natalie and usually say something about William coming or her being a sister at least once a day.

The only other big piece of news is that Mike's mom broke her ankle. She needed to have surgery on it. She's now stuck off of it for quite a while. Something like 6 weeks with a hard cast, and then probably more time with a boot or physical therapy afterward. This doesn't help the financial situation in the house any since she now can't work, nor do the medical bills. I also feel bad for her that she is unable to leave the house alone because its her driving foot. I'm sure that she'd like some time alone out of the house every once and a while, especially since she is used to taking care of herself. The only good thing is that her plans to come to Maine again in the summer had already been canceled, which turns out to be a good thing with this accident. We are hoping that she comes up around Christmas, similar to how she did back in March (spend a couple days with her sister, and then a few days with us up here).

So, that's about it. We have our yard sale for Relay for Life this year, but I didn't let it be a big deal this year. Probably because last year I didn't have much else to distract me, and this year I do. I'm hoping the weather is nice, as the say its planned for is supposed to be the first good day in a week. I'm also hoping we have enough things to sell. We always manage to find more things, but I'm not sure its enough for a whole sale. We are supposed to get donations from a couple moms I know, too. After the yard sale, it looks to be an easy couple weeks. Between dentist appointments, my doctor's appointment, and my glucose test, Mike will be working from home three days. Then there is the holiday. So, Mike will be around two extra days both of the next two weeks. After that, Relay is up, then visiting MA for Father's Day. We are currently trying to think through how we are going to see HP7 part 2 for our anniversary in IMAX. It opens on our actual five year anniversary, so it would be very awesome to actually go see it that day. We aren't sure if we can't make it work though.

Alright, so much for a short blog!

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