Sunday, March 31, 2013


Here's some of what's happening:

  • Baby T and I missed church today because she had a fever, peaking at 102.6.  I called the doctor's office twice for advice and dosage information and I may take Baby T in to the pediatrician's tomorrow.  They want to make sure she doesn't have an ear infection.  
  • Public Service Announcement:  Motrin is not for babies under 6 months old.  I did not know that until I talked to the after-hours pediatric person.  It's too bad we can't use it yet, because Motrin is better for giving for the night since it lasts so long.
  • Our high was in the low 80s today.  We turned on the air conditioning for Baby T's benefit.
  • I was home all day today, but we managed a family outing this evening to campus.  I pushed Baby T around in her stroller, the kids climbed a tree, and my husband and the kids threw a dart with my husband's homemade atlatl.
  • The kids and I have all been wearing our pedometers and comparing notes.
  • I helped the kids dye eggs.
  • My husband and the kids melted chocolate chips and used molds to make tiny bunnies and duckies.
  • My husband baked a two layer yellow cake from a mix and then he (with some kid help) made a lavender (or possibly mauve) coconut cream cheese frosting and frosted it.  It was weird looking, but everybody enjoyed it (except Baby T). 

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Full roll!

Here's some of what's happening:

  • Baby T successfully rolled from back to tummy this morning in front of a large home audience.  She had her arm stuck under herself for a while, but eventually got it out.
  • Baby T is enjoying sucking on her feet.
  • She's currently wearing a few 3-6 month items, a bunch of 6-9 month items and a couple of 12 month outfits (a hot pink velour suit and a baby blue velour ensemble).
  • My husband gave her some cereal in my absence a day or two ago and he reports that she sucked it down eagerly.  I have yet to see this phenomenon.  So far with me, she's been taking it in...and then extruding it again a couple seconds later.  
  • C has been working on an acrylic painting of a circus horse.  This is her first outing with her Christmas paint set (that was some of the stuff that was stolen from our doorstep over the holidays, so it took a while to get her the stuff we thought we'd already gotten her).  She has a big stash of small canvases, a wide variety of paint colors, a fancy palette that keeps paints moist and other necessaries.  We are having her sketch her plans before turning her loose with the paints.  

Friday, March 29, 2013

Good Friday

Here's some of what's happening:

  • We are having a four-day Easter weekend.
  • D is somewhat feverish but was well enough to manage some atlatl throwing.
  • Baby T is getting better and better at propped sitting.
  • The melamine Peter Rabbit baby feeding set (plate, bowl, sippy, fork and spoon) I ordered from Amazon has arrived.  Very cute!  I may also order a similar farm animal-themed one.    
  • The kids have been watching a My Little Pony cartoon show.  They are enjoying it, but embarrassed to be doing so.  C disposed of her My Little Ponies years ago.  
  • Closing is in less than two months. 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

More skating

Here's some of what's happening:

  • Palm Sunday!
  • We went to a grad potluck last night.  True story--there was meat (department provided), coleslaw and cookies and then the rest of us all brought drinks.  Oops.  It was OK.
  • History fair was Friday.  It was fine, but best of all, it's over now.  I did C's hair up in a bun and pinned and sprayed it and it stayed put through two hours of performance as Mrs. Lincoln.  C was really bummed out to discover that by the time her class was done putting on numerous performances of the high points of the Civil War, almost all the other classes were done exhibiting, but I think next year will be much less taxing.  I didn't see much beside D's class's ancient Egypt exhibit, but they were very impressive.  Both 2nd grade teachers were dressed up in ancient Egyptian costume and I got to talk to a small Howard Carter about the discovery of Tutankhamun's tomb.  
  • My husband and the big kids went rollerskating between lunch and dinner. 
  • Baby T is starting to be able to fling toys.  

Saturday, March 23, 2013


Here's some of what's happening:

  • C, D and I all have pedometers.  I've been wearing mine daily for over two weeks.  The kids have been wearing theirs during vacations and on the weekend.  D did over 20k steps today, which is pretty wild.  I've just gone over 11k steps for today, but I have to keep things moderate to avoid foot or knee injury.
  • The kids walked with me to the alternative coffee shop today (it's about a 20 block round trip).  
  • I bought this new diet and exercise diary from Amazon.  I'm going to be filling out only a fraction of the blanks, but I like the weekly progress sheets.  It's an attractive spiral-bound log (fear not--the garish orange cover is actually just wrapping).  
  • I've been trying to feed Baby T rice cereal at least once a day.  
  • I can't believe that it's already Palm Sunday tomorrow.  

Friday, March 22, 2013

History fair

I was dressing and coiffeuring C in the ladies' room for her part in the 5th grade's depiction of scenes from the Civil War when I heard the following (a retelling, not the actual exchange).

5th grade girl:  Harriet Tubman, show me the way.
2nd 5th grade girl [playing Harriet Tubman]:  I don't do that anymore.

C loves Baby T

C told me yesterday:  Thank you for being pregnant with T!


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Half roll

Here's some of what's been happening:

  • This was C's second day of after-school practice tests for UIL, the Texas academic contest program. It made the pick-up schedule trickier than usual, but we all did OK.  Baby T and I picked up D from school early, took him to speech at the college, told the therapist to try to finish 5 minutes early, I had coffee and a bagel and fed Baby T at the student union, collected D, then we went back to school and got C.  Very complicated!  We only have about 6 more weeks of speech this term and then I think I'll deem D graduated.  His stutter is much improved and they've also been working on his "th."
  • We were getting short of time at that point, so I took all the kids to philosophy club at my husband's department.  The club was talking about personal identity.  
  • I did a practice version of C's bun for History Fair tonight.  I haven't worked out the schedule yet, but it looks like I'll have to go and help her dress at school and do her hair there tomorrow night.  That's more complicated, but it will be nice to be able to do it at the last minute to prevent an accidental muss-up.
  • I fed Baby T rice cereal twice today.  She spits out a lot, but I think she was trying to suck some of it in.  She also seemed to be sucking at the sippy full of water I was giving her (it's got a soft silicon spout).
  • Baby T doesn't officially roll over yet, but she does do a sort of half roll from back to side.  I'm not sure why she isn't flipping over completely, but it's certainly very close now.   

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Today's pet peeve

Today's pet peeve is:  sick people in public.

I was in the ladies' room with Baby T when I happened to hear a student hoarsely talking to her dad on the phone about how she's so sick, it's probably strep throat, she only went to PT because she needed to lead it, and how she needs to explain this to her professor and get an exam put off.  It was with great effort that I left without saying, "Mono!"  I'm hoping not to discover whether my diagnosis was correct.

Sick people, stay home.


Here's some of what's happening:

  • We've tightened up the commenting controls on the blog.  Hopefully that will not inconvenience any legitimate commenter.  The spam was getting outrageous.  My least favorite was the disingenuous, passive-aggressive comment from a spammer, inquiring if I was having trouble with spam, while spamming me in the very same comment.  I hope the new controls will do the trick.
  • We're counting down to history fair.
  • The moving company guy came to do an estimate this morning.  It's the same company that moved us last year.
  • Here's our tentative moving timetable (it's mostly my husband's invention):  Day 1, closing, Day 2, cleaners at new house, move kitchen stuff and fragile stuff, Day 3, movers pack our stuff, Day 4, the move, Day 5, cleaners at old house, walk through with landlord's office, hand over keys.  That sounds  doable.   
  • With my foot trouble, I've been trying to moderate my walking to around 10k steps a day.  After we move, we're planning to get an elliptical machine for home use, as it's impractical for me to expect to be able to get to the gym regularly anytime soon.  The move itself will be a lot of exercise, though, so there's no rush.  I do want to get it by around Thanksgiving.  
  • D's pedometer has arrived!  He was very excited.  I'll have to remind him to put his on for the weekend.  C was very good about wearing hers over spring break, and we occasionally compared numbers.  
  • Baby T is rapidly growing out of her 3-6 month outfits and is wearing a lot of 6-9.  

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


I am enjoying the latest House Beautiful.  There's an ad from French stove-maker La Cornue.  It shows a huge, shiny, beautiful La Cornue stove and half a dozen large hopping frogs with the text "Bringing the French culinary tradition to life since 1908."  

I'm not sure how many stoves you'll sell in the US with this advertising campaign. 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Rice cereal

Here's some of what's happening:

  • C had a 99.9 degree temperature last night, so we are keeping her home from school today.  That's not officially feverish, but it's so close.
  • Baby T has been a less dependable sucker of late.  She's gotten more distractible and less committed to nursing.  I did a brief milk feeding around lunch time today and then fed her several tiny spoonfuls of Gerber's rice cereal.  I won't say that she was enthusiastic, and I'm not sure how much stayed in, but this was her official introduction to solids.  It was not very messy.  This was my first day to use the bibs I asked for for my baby shower half a year ago.       
  • The pediatrician's advice is to only give rice cereal before 6 months, but that after 6 months, there isn't any particular order we need to be concerned with.  Problem is, I'm so well-trained by the standards of 10 years ago that it's going to be hard for me to follow a more relaxed food introduction schedule.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Baby T is moving

Here's some of what's happening:

  • C has been making animals from strips of paper.  I thought the black cat with arched back and green eyes was particularly good.
  • This morning, for the second day in a row, I discovered that Baby T had migrated across her crib during the night.
  • In church, Baby T was sitting up on my lap with barely any support.  
  • I am plotting to introduce Baby T to iron-fortified rice cereal very soon--well, as soon as I can cope with the mess. We can start a more varied diet at six months.  At the moment, iron is the thing.  I have a very nice assortment of new bibs waiting to be used, as that's what I asked for for my baby shower.
  • Everybody but me and Baby T heads back to school tomorrow!  We all get a nice Easter break, though.  

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Today was the long-awaited rollerskating birthday party for D's boy classmates (and one big sister who is a classmate and good friend of C).  There was a total of just 7 kids including our own (spring break took its toll on attendance).  We started doing non-home parties a year ago and this was a truly painless experience.  We brought the cake, candles and birthday boy, and that's all we had to do.  There was a party helper to serve pizza, drinks, icecream bars and cake and a three-story playground in addition to the skating rink.  My husband got in a good skate and I socialized with parents.

C has a birthday in July and we're in negotiations with her over whether to do a skating party for her or to do an outing to the water park with another family.  That will be less than two months after our move, so a non-home party is very attractive.  

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


We watched the announcement of the new pope with all the kids on livestreaming internet.  It was very suspenseful to be watching and initially to have absolutely no idea what was being said or who was being introduced, but I think I caught "Francisco" in the initial announcement.  The crowd started yelling "Francisco!" after a few minutes.

One of our kids has a very Franciscan name and I congratulated that child on their big day.    

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Have goat, want geese

My husband tells me that there's someone on Craigslist who has a goat they want to trade for geese.  I think that's a nice fair nuisance animal for nuisance animal swap.

Sheep and goats

My husband and C were out driving when they drove by a field with both sheep and goats.  My husband asked C which were the bad ones in the parable, the sheep or the goats?  C answered, the goats.  My husband wanted to know why the goats were the bad ones.  C replied, there's a reason there's always someone offering free goats on Craigslist.

More spring break

Here's some of what's happening:

  • C has started working on her UIL practice.  
  • Good news:  I'm already over 14k steps today (a record).  Bad news:  I can feel it.  
  • We all went to the big strip mall this afternoon.  My husband and the kids hung out at Panera's with grading and Kindles and then proceeded to an athletic store and Petco.  C wants a mouse.  (If you know us in real life, DON'T GET US A MOUSE.)  I was clothes shopping.  This is a much bigger deal than it sounds like, as it has been nearly six years since I've gone into a store and tried on clothes.  I used to make pilgrimages to the mall by public transportation when we lived in DC, but after we moved to Texas it was some years before I knew how to drive well enough to go to the mall.  So I got out of the habit and survived on mail order.  My wardrobe gradually evolved toward stretchy knits, and I became rather hazy about my actual sizes.  However, I did my homework (some measuring before the mall trip) and as of today I'm the proud owner of two pairs of stretchy jeans.
  • Later in the afternoon, we ordered a German chocolate cake for D's birthday party and the kids and I did some grocery shopping.      

Monday, March 11, 2013

D is 8!

Here's some of what's happening:

  • D is 8 today.  His grandma and grandpa got him a Kindle and we got him a large and complicated set of German-made blocks.  My husband has linked D's Kindle to C's account and we took advantage of the Amazon sale on Chronicles of Narnia, so he has about 15 books on the Kindle now.  He's reading The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents
  • I took a big walk today with Baby T and have done over 12k steps today.  This being a week day, a surprising number of campus venues were open (Einstein Brothers' Bagels, the library Starbucks, etc.), just with shorter hours.  Pretty much everything was closed over the weekend.  
  • My husband and C and D made a two-layer chocolate mint cake with chocolate cream cheese frosting and peppermint patties between the two layers and on top.
  • My husband and the big kids went swimming this afternoon and are doing some comet viewing right now.  

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Spring break

Here's some of what's happening:

  • I had C try on the blue velvet dress we got her for the history fair.  It fits!
  • Baby T is able to roll from her back to onto her side.
  • I had only 7k steps yesterday, but am over 11k already for today, thanks to a long walk to and around campus with Baby T.
  • Campus is totally dead today and the cafeterias are shut down until after spring break, but I expect a few things will be open during the week (the gym, the student union, maybe the library).  During the school year it's fine that so much of our life revolves around campus, but during the longer breaks, I feel pretty deprived.  The college's expansion has been hard on retail and the bigger the college gets, the deader things are going to be during the long breaks.  I'm the sort of person who needs something to walk to, so this is a problem.
  • The alternative coffee shop is open!!!
  • D was doing a photo shoot with Baby T and trying to get her to smile.  After C came out in her new blue velvet dress, I suggested he take some pictures of her and he did.    

Friday, March 8, 2013


I saw my podiatrist today.  I wouldn't mention it, except it was a rather unusual event.  They did an x-ray of my foot to verify that I have an extra bone there.  I also had plaster (?) molds made of my feet while feeding Baby T.  This is all groundwork for getting custom orthotics made (the doctor had previously made me temporary ones).  Here's hoping I don't accidentally throw out my expensive new orthotics when disposing of old shoes!  (I'm morbidly afraid that that's exactly what I'm going to do.)

In related news, I've already done 10k steps today already.  There's a bit of a Catch-22.  On the one hand, losing weight will take pressure off my feet and knees.  On the other hand, in order to lose weight, I need to put pressure on my feet and knees.  I discussed that problem with the doctor--he suggests swimming, bike, stationary bike and elliptical.  My husband and I have been discussing the purchase of an elliptical machine.  We probably won't buy one until after the move, but it's a very likely late 2013 purchase.  My husband and the kids have been trying the various machines out at the local sporting goods store and we all really like the smooth motion of the elliptical machines.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Pedometer for C

Here's some of what's happening:

  • This is my second day of wearing a pedometer all day (or as much as I remember).  I logged 13k steps yesterday and am on track to log about 12k today.  That's right about the level necessary for weight maintenance for women my age.  That's the good news--this particular program is very compatible with housewifely bustling around with laundry and long stroller expeditions (i.e. my normal life).  I don't find wearing the pedometer at all inconvenient.  The bad news is that it's rather time consuming and I'm not getting my clerical work caught up.       
  • I've talked to the kids about getting them pedometers.  D thinks he gets enough exercise (and I expect he's right about that).  C is interested and we just ordered her a pedometer this evening.  I'll try to make sure that she wears it on weekends and breaks.  C is sedentary but also very competitive, so this may be good for her.  
  • D's class had a Greek feast at school today--they all wore ancient Greek dress (i.e. bedsheets).  D hated the food.  He brought home a multicolored glazed pot that he is obviously very proud of.    
  • A pack of sorority girls surrounded T's stroller while I was waiting for my iced latte at the college alternative coffee shop.  "I WANT one!" I heard one girl say.  Baby T has that effect on people.   
  • The spammers are terrible--it's getting so I can't keep my own blog tidy and any legitimate comments are going to be lost amid the spam dust bunnies.  I'm afraid I'm going to have to do something about this when I have the time.        

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Blue velvet

Baby T and I had a tough day at the mall this morning.  We were looking for a dress for C for her class's famous yearly reenactment of the Civil War.  I went into at least a half dozen stores with no success.  Easter approaches, and the fancy dresses are almost all sleeveless in our climate, which is not suitable.  It was bleak and I was starting to lose hope, but at least I had a lovely lunch at Panera's (baby spinach salad and French onion soup).  I was beginning to kick myself for not buying something around Christmas, when there are many suitable fancy party dresses (with sleeves!).

At home, I started looking at Amazon and discovered that there were a number of velvet party dresses available.  I put several of them in my Amazon cart and waited until C came home to order one.  C chose a midnight blue velvet dress with white accents and short sleeves.  It's ordered.  Glory be--this costume has been haunting me for weeks now.  It's very pretty and C should be able to wear it elsewhere.  

Now, we still need to settle the question of D's Egyptian outfit.  He's got a Greek feast later this week and will be wearing something toga-ish, but fortunately my husband was able to follow the instructions for turning a white sheet into a toga.

Sunday, March 3, 2013


Here's some of what's been happening:
  • Yesterday, my husband was doing various college stuff.
  • The kids and I all went to C's riding lesson out at the ranch.  C did very well and the instructor suggests she might be able to do dressage eventually.  I have no idea who does that locally.  I do, however, know that the college has horses available at a reasonable rate to people connected to the college.  
  • We hurried home and I got the pretzel dough going.
  • We had a playdate with a classmate of C.  The kids formed pretzels and decorated them with poppy seed, salt or sesame seed, while I did the other necessary stuff.  (I did the cinnamon sugar ones, also.)  

Friday, March 1, 2013


Here's some of what's happening:

  • The kids had a half day at school today.
  • We returned home to some packages on the doormat.  There were two birthday packages for D (his birthday is in less than two weeks) and a box for me containing a snazzy German pedometer and a book on a 10,000 step exercise plan.  The  10,000 step book comes packaged with a cheap pedometer that I gave to C (reviewers warn that while the book is good, the pedometer is unreliable).  I have told the kids that I will be happy to purchase them nicer pedometers if they are interested.  This is an experiment.
  • We have a very big day tomorrow.  We're expecting company for a soft pretzel-making party.  We have a tight schedule and I'm somewhat afraid that the old bread machine is going to let me down or that I will be delayed in getting the dough made in time for our playdate.  (I've been thinking that a new bread machine will be my birthday gift to me.)