Saturday, March 28, 2009

possibly my favorite photoshop ever


Just saw this on Fark, sorry I don't know who to attribute it to, but I think it's brilliant!

Not much else to report. Fry has been sick this week. He's got a little bit of a stuffy nose and a cough and I don't think he's slept this much since he was a newborn. Since he didn't have a fever we went to playgroup yesterday anyway with the thinking that it would be too bad to miss a week (we're still trying to get him used to the place). Unfortunately he cried the whole time and the ladies couldn't calm him down so we left after half an hour. At least he was smiling when we left! (I just hope he wasn't smiling because we were leaving!!)

We also went to a bourse aux vêtements this morning. Held in the salle des fêtes at the next town over, they had quite a lot of gently used clothes for babies up to teenagers plus toys and strollers, etc. For 50€ I got about ten onesies, five or six shirts, a jacket, a sweater, a few pairs of pants, a pair of overalls and three pajama sets, all in excellent condition. I'm really pleased with what we got and we only need to complete Fry's summer wardrobe with some socks, a few more t-shirts and onesies. Woohoo!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

update: he likes it, hey mikey!


think he likes it

I gave him his usual 250 ml of veggie milk and he was still hungry (growing spurt, anyone?) so I offered him a bit of baby food. This is the same jar he got yesterday, but honestly you couldn't see a dent in it before.

So now I'm thinking maybe in a week or two I'll decrease the amount of milk he gets to see if he'll eat more veggies. Thanks so much for your advice yesterday!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

figuring out food and other foibles

I'm really happy to report that our first visit to the halte garderie yesterday went way better than expected! Fry had a nice long nap before we went and was raring to go once we got there. At first, he got a little upset with being in a new place with new people, but he quickly settled down in the lap of one of the caregivers and played there for an incredible thirty minutes! He charmed the ladies with his smile, played with different toys and darn near turned over by himself during a little tummy time! Right about the time he should have had his bottle he started to get cranky again. I asked the ladies if they wanted to try to give him a bottle, because honestly my mother-in-law hasn't even succeeded in this area yet, but it was no dice. Luckily we're only ten minutes away from home on foot so he had no problem waiting until we got home to drink his milk, but everyone - including me! - was impressed at how well he did on his first day.

Also, it's been two weeks since we tried solids so we gave it another go this morning with a pot of green beans. He did much, much better this time, even opening his mouth when he saw the spoon coming and taking a few gulps of water after about three spoonfuls. After about a dozen spoonfuls, however, he'd had enough and wanted his usual veggie milk. He didn't make much of a dent in the pot but I suppose it's a beginning.

So from what the doctor said at our last visit, apparently he'll slowly start eating more veggies and drinking less milk at lunch time. I'm curious to know, you moms out there, is that your experience? I talked to MIL about eating solids the other day and she basically said, "Yeah, you gotta force them," which made me go !!!! Anyway, advice and suggestions are much appreciated.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

mystery solved

I've been sick for a week now and though I'm finally feeling a little better, it's been a mystery as to why neither Fry nor Stéph have caught my disease. Stéph finally figured it out - he heard at work yesterday that we had a really bad pollen explosion last weekend and I'm certainly having an allergy attack.

Now, if you knew me in my previous life, you're probably thinking, "well, duh." It's true that I had an incredible allergy problem when I lived in Greenville, and no wonder, since it was ranked the 13th US Allergy Capital the year before I moved here. It sounds hard to believe, but my allergies were so bad that I had to take allergy medication every day and if I didn't, I had the beginnings of a sinus infection that evening. For real.

I was so used to being sick all the time that when my cache of allergy meds ran out a few months after moving here, I panicked. I was still sick a lot that first year, no doubt thanks to Stéph bringing every new virus under the sun home to me from school, but then I woke up one day and realized my allergy nightmare was over.

Now it's been three years since I've been off the meds and oh, how quickly we forget. The first signs of Spring, the warmer weather, the sun coming out, of course it's allergies! So I'll be stopping in to the pharmacy today, but this time for allergy meds instead of more cold medicine.

Friday, March 13, 2009

a crazy afternoon

This day was so chock full of stuff, I don't know where to begin! First of all, I am getting over the worst cold in history. Well, it may not be that the cold is so bad, but Wednesday night I think I slept exactly two hours thanks to the return of Snorey McChainsaw, plus Fry had a little freak out at 4:00 in the morning and wouldn't settle back down so I ended up sleeping in his room for the rest of the night (morning?). So that set me back pretty bad, but I'm finally getting over it.

Anyway. This morning Fry and I ran a bunch of errands like stopping by the pharmacy, the Friday market and the butcher's, whom I love. Today she actually came out from behind the counter to coochey-coo Fry! So I was thinking that was our big outing for the day, especially with the crap weather coming through, but oh no! Stéph came home at lunch with a newspaper clipping about - get this - an itinerant halte garderie that is coming to Tiny Town! (You can read about us trying to get Fry into a halte garderie in Troyes in this post.) Every Friday afternoon, they set up in a large room in the old school and can handle up to 15 kids at a time. This afternoon they had a welcome session where you could come with your kids and check out the set up and get the information for signing up.

The only problem was that I didn't know exactly where the old school was. I didn't get very good directions, so after looping around the same block three times, I took a break and popped into the photographer's shop to get Fry's passport photos done. He was a real trooper and actually smiled at one point and we had to wait until he got serious again to take the picture!

So I ran back home and jumped on the computer and figured out where it was supposed to be (so frustrating, the directions I had were this close!) and we ran out again to try to find the place. I was so anxious I would miss the whole thing that when we did arrive, I was all red in the face!

So, long story short, I needn't have worried about getting a place since only one other child had been there before us and three toddlers came as we were leaving, it is incredibly inexpensive (it should work out to less than 5€ a month for us), Fry will get to meet other kids his age, get used to being around other people, and I will have three hours a week all to myself! Woohoo!

So, we have a new dossier to fill out and a meeting next Wednesday to do all the official child care stuff, and then we can start going on Friday afternoons together until he's comfortable enough to stay on his own. Now I just have to call the service in Troyes to cancel our meeting there, because I don't think we'll use that service now. I'm so excited and relieved that this great program has come to Tiny Town! All we've wanted was a program that helps Fry socialize with others for a few hours a week, and it fell in our laps!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

odds and ends

First of all, thank you all so much for your kind comments on the passing of my father-in-law. I'd intended to write a post on its own about his funeral but to be honest I'll still just burnt out on funerals and death. His memorial was nice and short, just as he would have wanted, but still quite touching. It was also very well attended and standing room only, a testament to his ability to make friends anywhere.

This past Saturday we headed East to party down with Doc and some other party people and a lovely time was had by all. Fry was jealous of all the party-making and couldn't settle down to sleep, so we headed home at 10pm. About halfway home we were "controlled" by the gendarmes in a village that boasts the only nightclub in the countryside, or so it seems. Anyway, we weren't exactly their target for the evening though Stéph still had to blow in a bag. The color changed just a twinge but the gendarme brushed it off with a "we're just gonna call that humidity" and sent us on our way. We are hardly big drinkers, especially when we know we've got a long drive home ahead of us, but still we're glad that Stéph switched to coke when he did! In any case, a great time was had and if you ever wondered, Doc makes some freaking killer chicken wings!!!

Winter break ended this weekend and Stéph headed back to school yesterday. Obviously it was a pretty crap vacation for Stéph but we're hoping to make up for it with a little family weekend away over the next break at the end of April. Fry has been going through Papa withdrawl and constantly checks out Stéph's blank computer screen and empty chair.

Speaking of Fry, we did try a little solid food this weekend. We started with carrot, since he's familiar with the taste from his carrot milk, and he did take a few spoonfuls before putting his little fist down. Sunday he took a bit more, maybe about 10 ml?, but was super fussy, couldn't relax and hardly ate for the rest of the day. Yesterday he was too cranky to sit in the seat long enough for more than one or two spoonfuls and was still super fussy, though he made up for eating less the day before by drinking every single drop of his bottles, so we've decided to wait another week. Part of the problem is that if he doesn't get a good morning nap, he can't be bothered to sit up in his bumbo chair long enough to eat from a spoon. If I can't get him rested around noon to try again, I may just push his "lunch" to the afternoon when he's in a better mood. We'll see what happens next week...

Well, that's all the news that's fit to be news. Also, it looks like Spring is trying to break through - it will be so nice to take Fry out in warmer weather!

Friday, March 06, 2009

Fry's weigh in and other items only interesting to Mommy

So Fry had his four month appointment this morning and in a surprise to exactly no one, he's still at the top of his weight class his age group in height and weight. Today he was eight kilos (17.6 pounds) and 64 cm (25.2 inches). At this rate, he will most likely transition to 9/12 month clothes by the end of the month, as six month clothes top out at 67 cm!

Fry did great once again getting his vaccinations and only cried an extra thirty seconds compared to the first time. However, he's been a lot more fussy and has had trouble napping all day, though no fever yet. I think the combination of the vaccinations and teething are the culprit and hopefully a full night's sleep will cure what ails him.

So the doctor has recommended starting Fry on veggies and after doing a little bit of research about starting solids so early, I'm ready to try. According to this article, he's showing at least four signs of being ready, including doubling his birth weight (and how!) and being able to sit up well when supported. There's a great product here that has a combination of milk and carrots or pumpkin and he's had no problems with those this week. Anyway, we won't force him if he's not ready, but we'll be trying out a little carrot tomorrow.

In other news, I'm very sad to report that my pinto bean connection has disappeared! She was there a couple of weeks ago, but Fry and I ran some errands yesterday in Troyes and stopped by Les Halles and the lady and my delicious, delicious pinto beans were gone!

I am only consoled by the reason Fry and I went to Troyes yesterday - to pay for our flight to visit North Carolina in August!! We've got our tickets in our hot little hands and now I just have to wait four long months. I guess packing our bags now would be a little premature...

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

speaking of babies...

If we wanted Fry to have a sibling with the same age difference and my sister and I, we'd have to get pregnant this month.



My parents did have their reasons, though. My mother, an only child, had read that siblings close in age tend to be very close growing up, so this is why she and my father, the oldest of four (plus two half-brothers that are 20+ years younger, which has no bearing on this story but I feel awkward not mentioning them for some reason) planned to get pregnant ASAP. Consequently, my sister and I are 13 months apart in age.

Now, this may work for some siblings, but it didn't work for us. I'm glad to report that my sister and I get along like gangbusters today, but not so much when we were kids.

So yeah, maybe when Fry's 13 months old we'll start talking siblings, but until then...

Monday, March 02, 2009

four months

Time sure flies when you're having fun... Fry is four months old today!

I think I took a grand total of five pictures of Fry this month. A couple of weeks ago I was absolutely sure that he was having digestion problems and that we needed to change his milk. Turns out, after some friendly advice and an excellent book recommendation, we figured out that Fry was simply fussy because he was overtired! Now we've settled into a routine of an hour's nap in the morning, a two hour nap in the afternoon and a short nap in the evening. Combined with going to bed around 8pm and waking up around 7am and playing in his bed for about half an hour, he seems to be much better rested and much, much happier! Plus the fact that if he does wake up, nine times out of ten he'll soothe himself back to sleep, which makes Stéph and I much, much happier!

The other amazing development is that Fry's first tooth is coming in already! Since it wasn't one of the center teeth, we didn't notice it at first. It was my MIL that actually felt the bump before anyone else! It's coming in on the bottom left side, maybe an incisor?

Of course this means everything goes in the mouth now! Mommy and Papa's fingers, both of his thumbs at the same time, and everything else in his reach. He doesn't really like the refrigerated teething ring or chewing on cold washcloths yet, though. Once every couple of days, teething seems to bother him more than usual, so we give him some homeopathic medicine to help fight the pain, which does the trick!

Fry seems to be forming a special attachment to his blue blanket and still loves his Sophie and froggie rattle. He is also becoming more interested in his other toys, including a folding rattle, a stuffed cow wearing a carrot scarf and overalls we call Madame La Vache, and another doudou from America which is a teddy bear/soft blankie combination.

He spends a lot of time in his transat during the day, but we're trying to encourage playing and moving around on his own in the pack n play we've set up downstairs as a sort of play pen. We try to get some tummy time in everyday, and I can see that he's starting to get frustrated about not being able to move, so I wonder if we'll see some progress in this area this month! He also likes his bumbo, but only for a few minutes at a time. Plus the cloth diapers make it a tight fit! His favorite place in the whole world is still his changing table!

His next doctor's appointment will be the end of this week or the beginning of the next, so I'll have more updates then.