The Grumpiest Day of the Year

Last night we had a lovely time at the Lomo y Queso home, enjoying dinner with old and new friends. Simon was spectacularly behaved, spending most of the 3 or so hours in the impending baby's room, joyfully occupied with plush baby toys. He ate a decent dinner, didn't destroy any artifacts in the home, and even put on a little plush animal flipping show for the dinner guests, at one point. I missed it, but heard it was a smashing success. We left a little after 10, stuffed with tasty food and feeling proud of our little guy. Two hours after bedtime! And no exhaustion-related meltdowns! Just a pleasant, beautiful boy, admired by all. Ahhh...... this parenting stuff is a breeze, no?

It took me about 15 minutes this morning to realize that I would pay today for the sleep Simon lost last night. EVERY LITTLE THING set him off. There are too many examples to list, but the one real thorn in my side this morning was his milk. Simon drinks soymilk as if he is breathing in air. He requires a full cup at all times, and the only step we have been able to take in softening this demand is to teach him to say, "Milk, please," when he asks for it. So, sure, he asks politely, but that does not change the fact that he needs it at every waking moment. Seriously, soymilk is his lifeblood. I don't even keep track of how much he actually drinks, because it would be too depressing to calculate how much of our grocery budget goes toward this one item alone. I'll just say that when we go to the store, we buy 5 cartons at a time. And we make multiple trips weekly, people. Think about that.

Anyway, this morning I brought Simon his milk in a red sippy cup. This was not pleasing to him. He would have much preferred a blue or a green sippy cup, and he made his displeasure known by not only refusing the milk, but by chucking it, along with a bowl of cheerios, across the room. In the history of Simon, there has only been one other day when the sippy cup color preference was so strongly expressed. That day, he staged a thirst strike and would not drink his milk from the 'wrong' colored cup. I resolutely denied his request for a different color cup, imagining the demands this would give way to in the future. I stayed strong, and by lunch, the thirst strike was over.

Today, perhaps bolstered by that article about Guantanamo detainees I saw him reading last week, he blew right past lunch, holding fast to his demand for a different cup. Also, just to confuse me, he kept throwing in whiny appeals to "drink cold milk," as if the temperature of the milk was the problem, not the color of the cup. I pulled out the most ineffective parenting trick in the book, trying to reassure him that the milk had just come out of the fridge; it couldn't get any colder. Applying reason to the emotional tyranny of an over-tired two year old. Brilliant.

He ate a good lunch, though he must have been mighty thirsty, and I immediately put him down for a nap. This effort was met with much screaming, thrashing, and requests for cold milk. So, being so smart and all, I brought him that red cup again! More throwing, screaming, etc. I decided to try to rock him to sleep, figuring he must be soooo tired. He would just melt in my arms, right? But I soon learned that the back and forth, back and forth of a rocking chair did not have the same hypnotic effect on a determined toddler as it does on a suggestible little baby. As I realized that he was not going to forget about the milk, I thought again about the demand for a different cup. I shouldn't give in, should I? It's the principle of the thing, right? One sippy cup is as good as the next, and I had already told him no.

Yet, the minutes ticked by, and Simon could not be subdued. I had a new thought: Maybe principles aren't so important on the grumpiest day of the year.

Right now, Simon is curled up in bed, snoozing away, clutching a green sippy cup that was emptied of its soylicious contents almost as soon as it touched his hand. 'The principle of the thing' is often important and worth fighting for, but today the most important thing was a NAP. Yes, the nap will save us all today. I think I'll go take one of my own.

To those of you who issued a gentle reprimand for the infrequency of our posts lately, this is what you get. A long ass post about sippy cups. Enjoy!


It's On, Bitches, It's On.

My friend Beth reminded me today that I never followed up on the post where I lamented being rejected for the credit card that was intended to fund our homebirth. Fear not, for this is America, the land where credit cards abound. I realized that my mistake was probably in applying for a card that required 'excellent' credit. Not because our credit is bad, but because we don't have enough of a credit history. So, I applied for several other cards whose credit requirements were only 'good,' and that did the trick. Our mailbox is now overflowing with plastic, and the dream of a homebirth lives on.

That being said, if anyone wants to hasten the day when we can cut up the credit card that will pay for this birth, contributions are welcome. I'm thinking of baking up some cookies and selling them at church for the same purpose. Any other ideas?


Yesterday Had a Theme, and I Really Wish Someone Had Consulted Me Before Choosing It

The sciatica I thought had taken up residence on my right side has sent a surveying party over to my left side. I guess I have New and Improved Sciatica! Now on Both Sides!!! It hurts.

My pregnant body is rebelling against housework. After a very productive day, I ached all over. See, with all that productivity, I wasn't able to fit in a yoga session. So, maybe my body is less anti-housework and more pro-yoga. Either way, the result was pain.

We got a ticket because our license plate sticker had expired, despite having received a new sticker in the mail some two months ago. The ticket was issued a mere 12 hours after Nate and I had an exchange that went something like this: "Hey, we really need to get that sticker on the car." "Oh, you didn't do that? I figured you did it." "No, I thought you would do it." "Okay, anyway, we really need to get that on there." "Yeah." In light of our conversation full of good intentions, that ticket hurts. Indeed it smarts.

We were counting on the magic of credit to help us manage the costs of my Dreambirth (aka homebirth). In the mail yesterday, we received a rejection letter from the credit card we applied for; the reason cited is that we don't have another credit card. While I remain hopeful, that rejection letter caused me some pain.

Finally, yesterday's winner in this category: Around 6 pm, Simon threw up. Then, for the next three hours, he couldn't keep anything down, even water. I can't think of anything more painful that seeing your child feel so miserable and being helpless to fix it.

Here's hoping today's theme is more pleasant.



Every time I take a break from blogging, I feel pressure to wait until I have a really great post to start writing again. But then I never do, so I never write, and time just keeps passing that way.

Today I am trying to ease myself back in. No great post here, just a few tidbits.

-Simon received some Teletubbies DVD's for Christmas. There is a logo on the front that says, "Teletubbies Teach Happiness." This is true, I find, as long as he is watching them. He screams in delight and giggles hysterically. It's fun to see him in such pure reverie. But my question is, what about when we have to turn it off? When the end arrives, my son is miserable, and what's more, incensed. I would be so appreciative if the Teletubbies could teach kids that they can be happy even after "The sun is setting in the sky; Teletubbies say goodbye."

-Yesterday we picked up a prescription for me at Target. This is notable because I think it's the first time during our marriage that either of us has needed a prescription. It prompted a "How do you do this?" type conversation, you know, the kind that happens whenever you do something for the first time in adulthood. Anyway, I presented my prescription and my Medicaid card, and the pharmacist handed back my medicine. Guess how much it cost. NOTHING!!! ZERO DOLLARS! Nate and I were a little surprised, but mostly just euphorically happy. Things are well in the world when people get medications for free. For a moment we felt like we were part of the elite, receiving free goods while other suckers pay. Then we remembered that we got it for free because we are poor. Oh well. Still a nice moment.

-Another new DVD in our house is Potty Power. We bought this for Simon, hoping it would be inspirational. So far, he seems to be really into the show. We haven't yet encouraged him to translate his enjoyment of the program into actual sitting and going on the potty. We're trying not to push it. The premise of Potty Power involves explaining in clear detail the logistics of going on the potty, wiping, and washing hands. There are also catchy, motivational songs to accompany each aspect of the process. One part of this show reminds me so much of all the evangelical alter calls I have experienced in my lifetime. A pastor or missionary would stand at the front of the church and say, "If you want to go to heaven, you have to say, 'I accept the Lord Jesus as my personal Savior.' Are you ready to say that? Then come up here and kneel at the alter." In the video, while introducing a song, the friendly host Jessica says, "If you want to be a big kid, you have to say, 'No more diapers for me!' Are you ready to say that?" Oh, how I wish Simon would kneel at the alter of the potty and convert.

-Some of you may know that I like to get crafty from time to time. Last year, I painted and decoupaged several pieces of children's furniture. I sold them at my church's bazaar, and people raved over them. I'm always looking for more pieces to paint/decorate/sell when I go thrifting, but they are pretty hard to find.
At church I have seen several cute little chairs and benches around. They are old, a little rickety, and have paint chipping like crazy. I have often thought about how I'd love to get my hands on them. So, yesterday, I finally talked to someone about it. I approached the guy who sort of manages the property and said, "I just wanted to let you know, if you are ever thinking of throwing out these little chairs, please don't. I would love to have them." He took my arm and led me to a storage unit. He opened it and pointed to a trap door in the back. "Behind that door are probably 20 or 30 little wooden chairs. I don't think anybody even knows they're there. Feel free to take any or all of them."
Holy Shit! The motherload! I am so happy!!! Now all I have to do is find some time to craft it up. But first, filthy floors and piles of laundry need to be addressed. Sigh. A little less happy now.


Gag Me With a Slide Ruler (or, Intelligent Design For Liberals)

Been watching a few clips at MeaningofLife.tv. It's filled with video clips of scientists, philosophers, theologians, and others. I've been watching clips in the "quantum weirdness" section. My first reaction was, this is great, smart folks talking about their areas of expertise. But then I realized that all of these clips are 5 mins. long or so, just enough info to be dangerous. I like the idea of pop-science, but in the form of 200-300 page long books, not 5 min. video clips. Also, I was really frustrated to see that they included some idiots talking about how they think quantum mechanics have something to do with conciousness and/or god. Fuck. There's nothing more annoying than folks who try to use their little glimpse of science that they understand, and then trying to expand that little bit of knowledge to apply to things they have no clue about. I used to do this myself, so I know how tempting it is, but hey, I was in college. That's the time to do those things, not when you're middle age and have an audience of however many people on the internet.
You gotta love that this blabbletygook is coming from people who would balk at the idea of Intelligent Design being taught in the classroom. Pseudo-science is only ok if my side is the one that gets to practice it.


My First Prediction for 2006

Paul helped me on this one.

In 2006, a musician will smash a laptop on stage like people used to smash guitars.

Side prediction, with lower odds than the preceding: Almost no one will care.

Question of the Day


What are the odds of inadvertently lassoing a small plastic turtle with your heaphone cord twice in the span of 30 seconds?

Winner gets something, maybe.


Goodbye 2005

I know I'm a day late on this, but here's a list of stuff that I stubled upon in 2005 and made me happy:

"Illinois" by the 745 Boyz
"Dear Summer" by Jay-Z
"Lighters Up" by Lil Kim
Low Income Tomorrowland by DJ /rupture
mp3 blogs

Everything Juelz Santana did, particularly "Mic Check"