Saturday, March 21, 2009

Heaven must be missing an angel

She doesn't walk yet, but she stands. Here's the proof:

So that's progress. She can stand up without holding on to anything. Walking has to be just around the corner, right?

We've been able to enjoy the weather a bit more recently. We've been to a couple different parks, and though there isn't much for Romelie to do there (no walking = no climbing = she can sit on the swing or the ground and that's about it), at least she's getting fresh air and sunshine.

She also started Waterbabies this morning. It's a 10-week class held on Saturday mornings at the Courage Center, a rehabilitation center in Golden Valley. She gets to take swim lessons (in the loosest definition of the word, of course - mostly we bounce the babies around in the water and sing songs) in a heated pool. She did alright - not as well as most of the other kids, but she was also the only one taking the class for the first time, which I was very surprised about, so she's just not as comfortable in the water as the rest of them. Hopefully she'll have more fun as she gets used to it.

I will say, as sweet and cute and smart as Romelie's hard for me to understand her emotions and behavior sometimes. I mean, I take a toy away from her and she throws the biggest tantrum in the world. Another kid touches her gently and she cries for 5 minutes. Someone she's seen dozens of times says hello to her and she hides her face in my shoulder or even acts afraid. So I was surprised (and a little disappointed) she didn't have more fun today. And when I took her little pool toy away and she screamed for two minutes (the only kid to react that way), I have to admit, it was a little embarrassing. Here's all the other kids, ranging from 6-36 months, having fun, giggling, or just calmly enjoying themselves - and here's my 16 month old throwing a screaming fit because I took away a plastic duck that wasn't hers to begin with. I mean, I know every kid in that pool has done that at some point to their parents, too, and it's not just my kid. But I wish I understood the reasons behind the mood swings.

But not to worry. I may not be able to predict her mood, but I can still enjoy it when she's happy and content. And thanks to this awesome video, so can all of you.

Finally, now that I have so many pictures to post, I've got a couple of funny hair pictures to share. The first (hair on top of the head) I did not do to her. Jen did it while Romelie was at daycare. And even though she looks like a Dr. Seuss's still kind of cute. And it does get her hair out of her eyes, which is becoming something of an issue.
And second, most of you probably don't know this because I don't think I've mentioned it before, but Romelie has curly hair. Within a day of wearing hats and me trying to smooth it off to the side, it becomes straight, and that's how she looks in all her pictures...but right out of a bath, it's really very curly. So I took a few pictures after her bath so you could see it. Gotta love the attitude in the pics, too.

Friday, March 13, 2009

I like to eat, eat, eeples and baneenees

Our kid is funny. Her newest thing is talking on the phone. She loves to pretend talk on the phone. The fun part is, she doesn't seem to notice or care whether or not it's an actual phone. So sometimes she talks on the TV remote. Sometimes she talks on dad's sock. Once she tried talking on her graham cracker. It's funny every time, I promise.

She is doing better with feeding herself lately, though she still only has her two middle teeth on the bottom. Six teeth on the top and two on the bottom – not super helpful for biting. But she’s learning. And mostly due to laziness, I let her feed herself whenever possible, including certain things that would normally not be considered finger foods. Like pasta. And mashed potatoes.

So last night, I was feeding her applesauce, but she was really interested in the spoon. I’ve let her try using the spoon in the past, but she doesn’t quite get it yet. She usually just holds the spoon in one hand, dips it in the food, then uses her other hand to take the food off of the spoon and put it in her mouth. But I figured I’d let her give it a shot, and lo and behold – it worked! For a while. Chason took a video. It’s long, but it’s pretty funny.

Not too much else is new. Our furnace went out on Wednesday night – not cool considering it was hovering around zero degrees outside. We put the space heater in Romelie’s room so she wouldn’t freeze and bundled ourselves up in blankets, but it was still 54 degrees in our house when we woke up Thursday morning. Luckily I had already arranged to take the morning off of work, so we got someone to the house right away and we’re back in business.

We also went to a baby shower for our friends Amy and Vinny last weekend. One of the games was guessing the baby food flavors. Romelie was able to participate in that game – she enjoyed everything, even the ones I’ve never fed her before, like the baby food ham. That was seriously gross.

Only 3-1/2 weeks until we go to Houston! Can’t wait to see y’all.

Friday, March 6, 2009

That's what I get for studying French in high school

If I were a college professor, I would offer a language class called “Speaking to the Speechless.” I would teach people how to understand those who can’t speak to us in words but still have intentions and desires and the wish to communicate those desires to others. Babies and cats would be week one on the syllabus.

This past week, I found myself wishing – often – that I could both understand and communicate my own needs and desires effectively to certain members of my household. Namely, Romelie, Jeffy and Tiger. As the non-cat of the bunch, Romelie ranks a bit higher in our home, so we’ll start with her.

She has a number of phrases that she uses on a regular basis, so they obviously mean something…to her. To me, they’re gibberish. “Doh doo dah” is a big one. Sounds kind of like “Don’t do that,” but it’s out of context. No idea what it means, and that causes her some frustration. And it goes both ways. For myself, I’m a very logical person. So I try to explain rationally to Romelie that the reason she can’t crawl around the room with animal crackers in each hand is because they get fuzzy and gross and become inedible. So she needs to either sit and eat, or she can crawl and play but no animal crackers. This, of course, goes completely over her head, she continues to crawl around with said animal crackers until I’m forced to take them away. And then she screams and cries. And it’s no good telling her that I already explained the situation and said what would happen and what her options were because, well, she’s 15 months old.

Well, now I’ve started doing this with the cats. To be fair, I guess I always did this, but I’m noticing the futility a lot more this week. Our cats are fat, especially Jeffy. They used to get food twice a day, but now they only get food in the morning. It’s gone by 5:00 or so in the evening…and then they cry. Mostly Jeffy. So he meows. “Jeffy, no more food tonight.” Meow. “Jeffy, you already ate today’s food. You can have more tomorrow.” MEOW. “Jeffy, this has been the routine for months now. How long is it going to take for you to learn that you don’t get fed in the evenings anymore?!” MEOW!! “Jeffy…I hate you.”

No, I don’t really hate Jeffy. But man, I wish I spoke cat.

In other news, my college choir, the Kenyon College Chamber Singers, were in Rochester on Tuesday night (about 90 minutes south of the Twin Cities), so my mom and Romelie and I drove down to see their concert. It was great. Romelie was so well behaved, barely a peep through the entire thing (and we’re talking classical a cappella chamber music…perfect kid), and I got to see my choir director, Doc Locke (Ben) and his wife Kay again, so it was a pretty great evening. Also, last weekend my dad came over to babysit for Romelie so Chason and I could have a night out with friends – two of whom, Nick and Emily, got engaged! So congrats and toasts and bowling celebrations ensued. It was a good night out.