Ten Months with Atticus

20130707-193322.jpg20130707-193350.jpg

Summertime! In June I bought the kid a pool.

We were supposed to go up to a farm for the day, but halfway there Atticus lost. his. shit. I pulled over, nursed him, back in the car, screaming re-commenced. I pulled over, nursed him, back in the car…you see where this is going. SO MUCH SCREAMING. When I finally admitted defeat, and yelled “FINE! WE ARE NO LONGER GOING TO THE FARM! I AM TAKING YOU HOME, YOU LITTLE PSYCHOPATH!” I looked up and noticed that a) the next exit was in 2 miles, and b) the freeway had mysteriously turned into a traffic jammed parking lot. So, the screaming got plenty of airtime. The second I was able to get off the freeway, I pulled into the first parking lot I could find to take my weeping child into an air conditioned room where he just might be quiet. We found ourselves at Lowe’s, and…that place is a MIRACLE.

If you ever have a screaming, nightmare of a baby on your hands, get yourself to a home improvement store. We spent a LONG time staring at light fixtures, then moved to the paint swatches which were very entertaining. The various carpet samples were pretty awesome to rub our hands over, and we concluded our visit in the gardening section, staring at flowers.

And that’s where we found the pool.

So, over an hour later, with a kiddie pool jammed in the trunk, we returned home. Atticus promptly passed out in the backseat, most likely because he had gotten his way. And that’s how I did not make it to the farm.

20130707-193446.jpg 20130707-193518.jpg

June was also the first meeting of our Baby Book Club. “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?” was a big hit, as was the various Polar Bear and Panda Bear remixes found at the library. I’m pretty sure Atticus will be reading on his own by Fall.

20130707-193554.jpg

We went hiking for Father’s Day on Mt. Tam for the big pancake breakfast. Atticus didn’t get a nap all day and we paid the price as he screamed all the way home.

Are you noticing a trend? June was the month when naps went a little nuts. He no longer takes three a day – sometimes he only takes one. And getting him to fall asleep became a challenge. Why?

20130707-193705.jpg

Well look who can stand up. My baby can stand up! Shit! Among other things, this now means that the second we put him in the crib, he just pops right up and starts laughing. He stares at us with this “Holy shit you guys LOOK WHAT I’M DOING!” face and we can’t get him to sit down. I’m proud of the kid, but GO TO SLEEP.

20130707-193623.jpg

He also got roseola last month. Frowny face. Crappy fever for a few days, followed by a crazy rash for the afternoon. He got better pretty quickly, but not before a lot of “I need my mama” cuddles and naps. While I want a healthy kid…it was selfishly kind of nice to have him need to be on top of me.

20130707-193752.jpg

Ten months old. Holy shit.

20130707-193811.jpg

Advertisements

Nine Months with Atticus

Dammit. Here we are 2 days from him turning 10 months old, and I’m just now remembering to post about Month 9. I guess that as long as I don’t start falling 2 months behind, I’m doing okay.

20130625-100031.jpg

As you can see, he is only getting cuter.

20130625-095911.jpg

In May he started really propelling himself around. He still (even now) hasn’t gotten his knees up underneath him, but he army crawls around the place like nobody’s business. He has arms of steel. He makes me a little scared. We got him these hideous pads to roll around on since he was still clunking his head on the floor on a regular basis.

20130625-100131.jpg

For Mother’s Day we taught him to drive. Then the Lumberjack gifted me with this fine backpack, and we hit the trails.

20130625-100148.jpg

20130625-100249.jpg

Roots of Empathy ended in May. I know Atticus isn’t going to remember any of it, but I’m really going to miss it. The kids were so sweet, and loved him so much, and it was so fun to take him there every month to get gazed at. All babies should be so lucky.

20130625-100410.jpg

Things got way more exciting in the food department in May! The kid finally started eating. He’s not too good at feeding himself yet, but he’s working on it. He loves those puree pouches, as well as taking bites from whatever I’m eating. I have to be sneaky with that, though, since ONE of his parents worries that Atticus is going to choke and die. The other parent is a little more relaxed. I’ll let you guess which one is right.

He’s still predominantly nursing, and I’m sure he will turn into a psychopathic deviant for it. I’m trying to incorporate more solids into his diet so that he’s less dependent on breastmilk, but that’s just so I can stop pumping at the office. I still love nursing the little wriggler. I love how calm it makes him, and how he’ll sort of tap tap tap on my boob like he’s thinking deep thoughts. He still does his Jane Fonda high kicks, too. That, and he’ll jam his hand in my mouth until I nibble on it, then laughs hysterically (getting milk everywhere). I know I would be getting more sleep if he wasn’t nursing, but…fuck it.

20130625-100453.jpg

Suddenly at the end of the month he started being big enough to sit in grocery carts and restaurant high chairs. I still can’t believe I’m a mom. To a kid. Who sits in shopping carts. The fuck?

20130625-100512.jpg

Flowergate 2013

I forgot about the best part of last month!

VALENTINES DAY

aka, the day I ruined my son’s life.

In case you have forgotten, I used to be a burlesque dancer. I have a shit-ton of costumes, sparkles, feathers, and random fabulous stuff that no longer gets much play. Therefore, when the holidays come around, LOOK OUT. Time to get fancy.

Everyone likes to dress up a baby! Everyone on facebook was posting photos of their cute little babies* in pink & red valentiney outfits! I was at work, and decided that first thing when I got home I would do the same.

* all these babies were girls. I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN.

So, I got home, the Lumberjack went off to class, and I dressed up the baby. ADORABLE.

20130312-090928.jpg

This baby is ready for V-Day

Of course, since I am me, when it came to posting him on the FB, I went for humor. Therefore, I posted this:
20130312-090857.jpg
with the caption “Unlike his mother, Atticus does not enjoy dressing up for thematic photoshoots.”

AND THEN EVERYONE LOST THEIR DAMN MINDS.

My aunt threatened to take away my “mom card,” the Lumberjack’s cousin asked him if he knew and approved of this (luckily the Lumberjack responded with, essentially, “who the fuck cares”), and one of his random friends told me to “stick with bats and gloves.” At work, when I mentioned it to two coworkers (who are also my friends on FB) and laughed, thinking they would also find the response ridiculous, they both individually gave me shit about it.

In case you can’t see the photo, yes: I clipped a flower to my son’s hair. ALERT THE FUCKING AUTHORITIES.

20130312-090959.jpg

Please send help. My mom is clearly unfit.

I laughed it off to a point, but then…what the everloving fuck is wrong with everyone? It is a flower. It is a baby. It is a flower on a baby. I didn’t even pick a pink one! It’s red! He’s dressed in red & white! I THOUGHT THOSE WERE ACCEPTABLE BOY COLORS.

I get so frustrated with the stupid fucking gender rules around kids and their clothes. Everything is so strict, and people get so upset if you don’t follow them correctly. And no one can explain why. With one coworker, I tried to make her verbalize what, exactly, the problem was. She said “But…he’s a boy! It’s mean!” what’s mean? “Putting a flower on him!” why? “Because he’s a boy!” and so on. Circular logic IS NOT LOGIC.

Finally when my cousin made some crack about how one day he’s going to be a teenager, I responded:
“Yep, and if I do my job right, he’ll be a teenager with a strong sense of self who isn’t embarrassed or threatened by a flower. And besides, who are we to assume he won’t grow up to LIKE wearing flowers? He’s a baby – he doesn’t even know what gender IS, let along how he wants to express his. So it’s my responsibility to show him myriad options, then love and support whatever he chooses. So until he can dress himself, he gets camouflage outfits, pink pajamas, onesies with a football on the butt, and a flower in his hair. I think he’ll be okay.”

fucking hell.

Six Months with Atticus

Six months! Atticus is chomping at the bit to grow up.

20130312-084900.jpg

ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
Seriously though, he is chomping on EVERYTHING. The little bastard has two teeth (!!!) and he gnaws on everything possible. And YES he has bitten my boob. And NO yelping in pain once doesn’t make him stop. It does make him burst into tears, however. And yet, he’ll do it again.

20130312-084748.jpg
This month we watched the Super Bowl. We did not win.

20130312-084806.jpg

He’s sitting like a champ, now (and look at him playing nicely with others!) He is also ROLLING THE FUCK OVER.

20130312-084835.jpg

He likes to do it when no one’s watching, however.

He has also spent some quality time with his Aunt Pippi, aka my parents’ dog.*

20130312-084951.jpg20130312-085436.jpg

Sometimes she likes it more than he does.

*I was walking with my mom, Pippi & Atticus in her neighborhood, and a woman up the street leaned down to Atticus and said “Oh, this must be the new baby!” and my mom starts trotting Pippi around, saying “I know! Isn’t she the sweetest?!” I said “Mom, she was talking about your grandson.” OOPS. I’ll be sure to tell Atticus about this when he’s nice and impressionable.

20130312-085022.jpg

We started giving him solids for a brief second or two, then Atticus choked a bit, vomited everywhere, and the Lumberjack decided we were done. I THINK I have convinced him to start trying again. I want him to try all the foods! The Lumberjack wants him to not choke to death. I think we can find a middle ground.

20130312-085104.jpg

At some point, this baby turned into a child. WEIRD. And amazing. Sometimes I think I’m going to puke from all the emotions I have when I watch him sleep. He’s absolutely incredible.

Half a Year!

Half a year with my favorite baby in the world:

photo (5)20130219-134157.jpgIt's cool, I'm four months old...whatever.My baby is 3 months old.IMG_3787he's one month old!  and is in a dumb bulky diaper.  boo.

Holy CRAP he was so tiny!

Five Months with Atticus

Well. I am certainly behind the times now – he turns 6 months old next week (WTF), so this is my latest post yet. I can barely remember what happened last month.

20130219-133946.jpg

Atticus disapproves.

20130219-134019.jpg

He’s been spending a lot of time at my parents’ house, which is awesome. We get free babysitters, they get to smooch his little face, and he gets a close relationship with his grandparents. Everyone wins! Their puppy was born about 3 weeks before Atticus was, so they can grow up together. Yesterday we were over there and the dog washed Atticus’s face VERY carefully. I’m not sure he knew what was going on.

20130219-134050.jpg

He has discovered his toes, and is now obsessed with them. Sometimes he sticks just his big toe in his mouth and then starts sucking on it intensely, like it’s his thumb. Of course, he stops the second I get out the camera.

20130219-134115.jpg

AND HE’S SITTING UP. Last month was when he started, although he was still pretty floppy. This picture was taken immediately after he sat up, face-planted, and I pulled him back up again. He totally face-planted on the bed, and when I got him back up he was just smiling away, like it was the best thing ever.

He’s a really happy baby, and I’m grateful for that every day. He cries, of course. He fusses. He gets cranky. But his general demeanor is just so *pleasant*. All the time. Even when he was sick (I think he was sick? He’s never really been sick, so I’m not sure), he kept smiling at me weakly, like “it’s okay, mom, it’s not that bad.” His crying almost always turns into laughter as soon as I fix the problem.

He laughs constantly. Squeeze his thighs or knees, and he cracks up. He also loves to be flung around, flipped upside down, held in the air…if I hold him with my hands gripping his rib-cage (under his armpits), and then swing him from side to side while singing (“American Pie” is his latest favorite), he totally loses his mind.

20130219-134157.jpg

Six month update is on its way!

Back to Work

So, I’m working again.  I don’t get to hang out with the coolest little baby all day long anymore.  I keep wanting to write a post about it, but never get around to it, so instead here is the email I just sent to my friend who’s going back to work in a few weeks and wanted to know how bad it was going to be:

Back to work. It is not that bad. First! First, you will like it. The first few days will be fun! Exciting, a new challenge, nice to get out of the house and pee whenever you want to pee without having to prepare the baby first. You’ll use your brain, which is nice. All your coworkers will be excited to see you so you’ll get to talk about the baby a lot. Everyone will complement you on how great you look. It’s fantastic!

After the first few days, you settle in and it’s not new & exciting anymore, but still nice to get out of the house and to have a set schedule. Then, somewhere in the second week, you realize that actually? Work sucks, and your baby is awesome, and it is STUPID that you are at work, and why aren’t you staying home and being a happy, hippie earth mama with your incredible kid telling you great stories all day long? You are a BAD MOM and clearly you DON’T love your baby as much as you think you do, and your husband is probably JUDGING YOU.

You have to push past that point.

It gets better! That crap lasts another few weeks, and then…it just becomes what you do. You wake up, you go to work, it’s not the greatest but it’s not terrible, you remind yourself that you’re being a good female role model for the kid and you’re contributing both to society and to your family, and you enjoy the hell out of that baby whenever you’re home, and you remind yourself (remind your husband to remind you if you forget) that your husband admires and respects you for what you’re doing, and everything is going to be just fine.

The end. For now. I’m only 5 weeks back, so who knows what the future holds. But for now I’m doing okay.

Four Months with Atticus

Look at me, posting just one day after the baby got one month older. Blogging: I’m right on top of it, Rose.

This month was exciting! He’s doing so many new things with his body!
IMG_3988
I took him swimming for the first time, and he was PSYCHED. Look at him in the changing room in his swim diaper – he can barely stand it. He is a total fish. When I first pulled him into the pool, I assumed I would hold him vertically upright and just bob around for awhile. But no! He immediately stretched out horizontally and started kicking! MY BABY’S A GENIUS, Y’ALL. So around and around the pool we went, with him kicking and occasionally even doing the crawl stroke! Whaaaaaat. Anyway, we’ve gone a few times this month, and each time he tries something new (he can now float on his back with just one hand holding up his head). We’re going to start baby swim classes in the spring, but until then my kid & I are hanging out together in the pool, making the other swimmers swoon.

He’s also rolling onto either side now all by himself, as well as pushing up on his feet to make a bridge when he’s laying on his back. And when I pull him up to a sitting position, he pulls himself up with my help instead of just being dragged along. It’s so fun to see these changes in him, and to realize how much he still has to learn.

He’s also gotten really into music lately. He still prefers “Baby Beluga” (what is up with babies and that song?!), but he’s branched out a bit. Elizabeth Mitchell is our current favorite – “Peace Like a River” is so sweet and cheerful, and so easy to sing along with. He LOVES it when I sing along to music. He’ll be happily listening to something, then the second I start singing he opens his eyes wide and gets a huge grin on his face. I think this kid will love karaoke.

The other night I was dancing him around the room singing along with Hangin’ Tough (thanks, Pandora), and he started laughing so hard he gave himself hiccups.

IMG_3977

hangin’ SO tough

and when he laughs he makes noise, now! It’s amazing! He used to just silently chuckle at things, but now you can actually hear it, and it’s awesome. The Lumberjack calls it “the best sound ever” and it really is.

This baby also wants to chew on everything now. EVERYTHING. EVERYTHING INTO HIS MOUTH.
IMG_4016
He’s gotten pretty good at pulling things to his mouth, but his preference is still to bring his mouth to the thing. So he grabs something in his hand, and then slowly drops his head down with his mouth open like a little fish (BABY FISH MOUTH*) until he makes contact. My mom said he looks like Winston Churchill, all huddled over. An ADORABLE Winston Churchill, sure.

*the Lumberjack had NO IDEA what I was talking about when I shouted “baby fish mouth!” the other day. I don’t even know what to do with this information.

So, I’m back at work. And yes, there’s still a post that goes with that, but not now because it’s Friday afternoon and I don’t feel like it. The Lumberjack is taking great care of that kid, although I know they miss me terribly. He texts me photos throughout the day of their adventures:

IMG_3992

this picture was accompanied by
“he’s going to join the Misfits”

IMG_3991

vintage Mount Diablo

I miss them 😦

We do still get to have adventures as a family on the weekends. Last week we went to a Winter Solstice event up in the Berkeley hills, and the weather was…not great.
IMG_3997
Luckily the baby just went with it.

And of course the month was capped with Christmas!
IMG_4048
I really love Christmas. I love buying/making presents for my loved ones, and the food, and music…it’s great. Warm & fuzzy, etc. My family’s tradition has been to get ornaments every year, and I want to continue that with Atticus. This year I decided to make his!
IMG_4085
It helped that he had no idea what I was doing, so I could work on it in front of him. The back is covered in gold sparkles. I wish I could wear it as a small hat.

IMG_4024
For Christmas he sat up in a high chair by himself! He slumped to the side, and got sick of it real quick, but still. Look at him go.

It's cool, I'm four months old...whatever.

It’s cool, I’m four months old, NBD.

Oh, breastfeeding.

It’s happened. I’m forgetting about post-natal things that were difficult, and am viewing the early weeks through a rosy tint of love.  I think this is because I’m already planning on Shotgun Fetus #2, so I don’t want to remember anything that was hard.  Everything was great!  Let’s do it again!*  So it comes as no surprise that I am in love with breastfeeding, can do it at the drop of a bra strap, and seem to think it was always this easy.

* “let’s do it again!” was literally the first thing I said to the Lumberjack, post-birth

I have been lucky, it’s true.  I produce an obscene amount of milk, and always have.  For example: Atticus eats 8-10oz while I’m at work.  I pump over 20oz while I’m at work.  THE FREEZER IS OVERFLOWING.  The other night I was lying on my left side feeding the kid, when I noticed that my right boob (it’s the over-achiever, and always produces 1-2oz more than the other) was squirting a little fountain of milk, straight up into the air.  I admired its beauty for a minute before mopping it up.

Atticus also latches on nicely, and without any pain.  Without any pain ANYMORE.  This is what I’m forgetting.  The “HOLY FUCK GODDAMN” that I used to shout out when he would latch, the way I would glare at the Lumberjack when he innocently suggested that I feed the kid, the feeling akin to someone squeezing & pinching my nipples when nothing was actually touching them…I have forgotten all of these things, and instead just love the fuck out of breastfeeding.

It feels good.  Is it possible to say that without it sounding weirdly sexual or otherwise inappropriate?  One of the surprising things about breastfeeding is how completely non-sexual it is.  I mean, these are my tits.  I’ve spent almost a decade exposing them for cash & performing with them in The Sexy Way.  Things have “felt good” involving my boobs for more than half my life now, so it’s odd to say breastfeeding feels good, since it’s my kid using my boob for food.  But…it does.  In the same way a massage feels good, rubbing a sore muscle or someone’s hand on your forehead.  My breasts don’t really hurt much from storing up milk (except for when I go 3+ hours without nursing or pumping and then OW), but they still feel full, so having them slowly drained feels nice.  Soothing.

Watching his little jaw moving rhythmically while his eyes roll back in his head is also great.  And when he hums.  When he pushes gently on my boob like he’s trying to pump more milk out of it.  Especially when he’s crying from hunger, and then when I’m almost settled in to feed him and am finally pulling down the bra strap he starts making this crying chuckle sound, like he’s still upset but can’t not also be excited about what’s about to happen.  And when he falls asleep next to me with a little sigh, and I know that I built that, I grew that, I’m sustaining that.

that little dude has passed the hell out.

that little dude has passed the hell out.

Three Months with Atticus

My baby is 3 months old!  Of course, the next day he started wearing 6mo clothing.  Good lord.IMG_3925

Breastfeeding is still fantastic (my milk supply got Seriously Out Of Control).  The only tricky thing is that my ridiculously long baby now hangs off my lap, so nursing in public has gotten more difficult.  I love having him curled up in my lap, but he needs extra pillows to support his entire body, so the quick restaurant feed is now an ordeal as he writhes around, trying to get comfortable.  However!  The other day I nursed him in the Ergo baby carrier, in the baking aisle of the grocery store!  That was pretty awesome.  Especially when an older couple came up to coo at him and got all up in his face, then realized what they were looking at (aka my boob) and practically ran away.  Oops.

He’s turning into a kid!  He plays with a toy!  Well, he grasps it, pulls it up to his mouth, and then frantically tries to shove it in his mouth while licking it all over.IMG_3917  This kid wants everything to be in his mouth.  His favorite trick is to shove one fist in his mouth, then use the other hand to push his fist in farther.  ?!  He has been known to do this until he gags himself.  Charming.

He's not always pleased about the weather

He’s not always pleased about the weather

The weather  has gotten colder, which means I have to bundle this baby up more.  Our apartment is freezing, so he’s wrapped up as much as possible.  I miss seeing his soft skin!  It’s fun taking him outside with everything all crisp and cool, though, since he’s perked up and pays much more attention now to his surroundings.  He’s big enough to face outwards in the carrier, and he seems to be taking everything in.  He likes to hold each of my pointer fingers in has hands, like he’s steering me around.

Baby knows that napping is the best part of Thanksgiving.

Baby knows that napping is the best part of Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving was low-key this year.  The Lumberjack’s brother came down and we went to my parents’ house.  We had the usual food stuff, with the usual family issues (aka my mom still hasn’t accepted that she doesn’t like to do the whole big cooking/hosting thing, and that’s FINE and we’re all perfectly happy anyway, so enough with the pretending and the apologizing let’s just order food from somewhere else and enjoy each other’s company!), but we had a BABY!  He was adorable and in a lovely mood and took a bunch of naps so that I could drink beer.  Nice job, kid.

I went back to work the day before he turned 3 months old.  That is its own post, really.

Okay, to be honest it’s way past him turning 3 months old.  He’s over 3.5 months at this point.  So I don’t really remember what happened last month as opposed to what’s happening now, so I’ll stop here and just promise myself to get on my 4 month post faster!

Also, the shooting in Connecticut this morning has totally fucked with my head.  I got home and couldn’t squeeze him hard enough.  This morning I woke up around 6:30am California time, and he was lying there, wide awake, his eyes and mouth both open huge all happy & smiling.  He’s always so happy in the morning.  I just watched him for awhile, thinking about how lucky I am to have this amazing baby, and just falling in love with him all over again.  Then I find out later that at that exact time, across the country there were 5yo babies being fucking slaughtered.  I can’t even understand this.

My baby is 3 months old.

My baby is 3 months old.