Thursday, June 12, 2008


Levi: Months Three, Four, and Five

Check this out, dude. I'm going to help myself get caught up on these newsletters by combining THREE months in ONE letter. This is also known as cheating. Or slacking. Either would be true. My excuse is this: Month Three looked an awful lot like Month Two. Colic, check. Homebound, check. Frazzled mama nerves that she'd like to forget, check. Your father and I counted the days until your fourth month, because everything we'd read about colic says that after twelve weeks, a magic fairy sprinkles colicky babies with happy baby dust and everything is suddenly better.

At fourteen weeks, we took you back to the clinic because that stinkin' fairy never showed up. The docs continued to say it was colic or reflux or just, you know, all babies cry, deal with it. Needless to say, you now have a different pediatrician. We finally ended up switching your formula yet again, to a type that breaks down proteins so that babies that have trouble breaking them down don't have to, and lo and behold, we got our different baby! No more hours-long screaming fits, no more arched back and red face, no more prune juice and glycerin suppositories to wiggle out your seven-day bowel movement! Someone should have told us that the magic fairy dust comes in the form of hella expensive formula.

Now don't get me wrong. It's not like nothing great happened during Months Three and Four. You laughed for the first time, you started to enjoy tummy time, and you were finally weaned from using the bouncy seat as a bed. We had tried and tried just laying you in the crib, but every time you would wake and cry and we'd have to soothe you to sleep all over. So I asked your father to think of a way to make the crib vibrate like the bouncy seat, thinking maybe he'd use a neck massage pillow that we had. Instead, he built a vibrating motor out of--get this--a used hand-vac motor and a shaving cream lid, and attached it to the crib frame under the mattress. It worked perfectly. The first time we set you in it, you slept five hours! In a row! In a crib!!! Over the next three weeks, Rick's homemade motor started to die down. The vibration became weaker and weaker, until it just didn't vibrate the mattress any more. And that, Levi, is how you started sleeping in a crib. (And how I came to really respect your father's electrical skillz).

So like I said, it's not that the third and fourth months didn't have their charms, but if anyone ever asks me when colic gets better, I'm not going to get their hopes up. Twelve weeks my ass. I'm going to tell them to hold on until the fifth month. Dude, the fifth month is WHERE IT'S AT. This month you started smiling and laughing so much I really did think you were a different baby. You started rolling onto your side and trying to sit up. You shrieked with glee every time we put you in the Baby Bjorn to go for a walk. And best of all, you finally started to tolerate, and sometimes even enjoy, riding in the car. The first four months we were pretty much homebound, because even if we had been enjoying a relatively calm period, you started to scream the second you were put in the car. It didn't matter what we did or didn't do. We tried everything. And then, one day, you managed a five-minute car ride. Soon, you went on a ten-minute car ride. And by the end of the month, we made a twenty-minute trip! Watch out world--we're real adventurers, you and me! I'm just glad you decided to give the car a shot, before I was forced to scratch the eyes out of the next mother to tell me, "Well, that's strange. My baby just LOVES the car."

One of your major discoveries this month was your feet. I called your dad one day to tell him we had a new reason to be proud of our son, because after days of trying, you had finally managed to fit all five toes of your right foot in your mouth. I have never seen such happiness in my life. But one of the things I have noticed about you, Levi, is that you are not one to bask in the glory of a new accomplishment for long. As soon as you develop a new skill, you want to take it further or you give it up altogether for another one. When you found your hands, you were frustrated that you couldn't get them to your mouth. And once you got them to your mouth, you were upset that they didn't just stay there.
This reminds me of your father. Not that I ever knew him when he couldn't get his hands to his mouth, but the way he is always thinking of The. Next. Big. Thing. When he's climbing a mountain, he's planning the next trip. When he's building a piece of furniture, he's thinking of the next thing he'd like to build. And when he's rewiring a house, he's checking out a book on plumbing. It's wonderful to live with someone so interested in life and learning and doing, and as we approach your father's first Father's Day, I can easily and honestly say that I will be happy for you to inheret his passion and determination. But as your mother, I will always be torn between wanting to fix all your frustrations and understanding that you actually need some frustration so you'll learn how to fix it yourself. When you do, can you help your father build me a kitchen island?

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


Speaking of knitting...

I just received an e-newsletter from a yarn company, in which ideas for Father's Day knitting projects were given. Which is awesome, because now I'll have Father's Day 2011 taken care of.

Thanks for all the ideas for small/easy/baby-head-friendly knitting projects, and please feel free to keep them coming. I neglected to mention that I also need to knit from stash for awhile, but I think I have some skeins that will be great for hats, and maybe some short scarves. I loved reading your suggestions, and I'll let you know what I come up with. In 2011.

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