Thursday, April 22, 2010

Seriously, can I get a minute?

Revelation number 23 I've figured out lately (now that Berkley has more personality and can move) is that there is no more free time when Berkley is awake. I established that a post or two ago. He can do the crawling thing (a little faster than you'd think if you put him down for "just a second" to take a pee). And he can walk around if he's holding onto something.

He also doesn't have depth perception. I know this because he doesn't stop at the edge of things. He just keeps on crawling, right over the edge. For instance I put him on the bed, and he plays for .00016 seconds, and then crawls over the edge, landing on his head. I put him down on the kitchen floor, and he crawls down the little step onto the back porch to rummage through the recycling bin and cut himself on a Coke can.

And, to top it all off, it turns out only people are acceptable as jungle gyms. And if he does find something else to play with/on, I must be watching. If by some chance alignment of the stars, moon and my house Berkley decides to play with something other than my face and I decide to walk into the kitchen to get a Coke (so he'll have something to cut himself with later) he knows.

I can walk out like a Ninja, completely out of his field of view and not making a sound, but he knows. And he lets me know that this is a zero on the acceptable scale, and screams at me. To make life more super fun, teething, colds (which has only happened once thankfully) and anything odd makes this behavior more pronounced.

So a couple of days ago I needed a shower and Courtney was doing something Berkles could not "help" with, so we were in a bit of a pickle. Then, it dawned on me. This kid loves water. So, a few minutes later, Courtney came in to find me in the shower, washing my hair, with Berk down under my feet, crawling back and forth playing in the fake rainstorm created by the shower head.

In my mind, if he's going to be clingy, he's got to be cool with me deciding what "we" do.

Since then, all decorum has gone out the window. Where I used to have "my" time in the bathroom, now it's just a family affair no matter what's going on in there. At least one of us get's a minute.

Now I'm just trying to decide: Is it okay to lock him in the playroom with a recording of me talking? There's a glass door where I could keep an eye on him from the couch, and maybe he'll think I'm there long enough for me to pay a bill or two on the computer.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Vacationing with Baby

So, we just don't do it. I know other people do, and have a great time taking their 8 month old to Disney World, Six Flags, etc. I seem them all sweaty, pushing their giant stroller through Busch Gardens with their 128oz diet coke in the cup holder and I think "how are they going to get that thing on the Loch Ness Monster?" Not for us. Plus, Berkley thinks pine straw is hugely entertaining and is amazed by the cat next door. I don't think a schlep to Cedar Point is in the cards any time soon.

What we do shove him off to the grandparents. He loves it, they seem to love it, so in silly business speak: win-win. We have synergy.

Love you Berk, but you stay home while Mama and Daddy go lay on Caribbean Beaches. When you're older, get ready for summer camp.

Monday, April 19, 2010


For the record, Courtney and Berkley were doing something in Greensboro today (spending money) and I was able to have lunch with them. Berkley sat in the high chair the entire time and played with puffs.

This post is about another food topic, baby-proofing the house.

If you've read much of this blog or Courtney's Blog, you can see we're not much into catering to Berkley. We try to keep in mind that he's here to compliment our lives. I realize some people have a child in order to provide for that child, make the world better, save the rain forest, win the Boston Marathon, whatever. We just wanted one child to enjoy and complete our family. It's Courtney and I first, Berkley second. Yeah, yeah, call us crazy.

Anyhow, let's keep this ranking in mind as we remember that Berkley is growing up and is quite mobile these days. He can walk around with his hands on furniture, crawl quickly, open and close doors, etc.

So, the baby-proofing has began, and yet here is another thing people don't know when they're day-dreaming about wonderful days in the park with their unborn child. So, here is a list of things you have to do in order to get your home ready for a child. I also decided to include whether we did it, or decided to go the hard knock route with Berk and let him learn the tough way.

1) All breakable things have to be moved out of baby reach. (partial success)
2) Electrical outlets have to be plugged. (We did a few of these. Others have plugs at times, and we figure his fingers are already too big to get in there. Everything he owns is plastic.)
3) Anything that will dissolve (like paper) has to be kept out of baby reach. Drool dissolves paper at 4 times the rate of water. (total failure, but we're improving. Berkley enjoys playing with the paper towel rolls. Sort of like a dog bone...)
4) Floor lamps, and anything that can be pulled over, like a table cloth, have to be secured. (did it)
5) Electronics are super attractive for babies. (we said screw it, he loves the radio/tv area and we encourage the interaction. We're also hoping he'll learn to work the surround sound unit, it's pretty tough to figure out.)
6) Dust must be vanquished every few days. Babies are natural dusters since they're always crawling around, but the dust bunnies that collect in corners, under the bed, etc are rough on the windpipe. (our house is for sell, so it's CLEAN)
7) No poison. So yeah, you have to clean all of the poison out of the places it lives. Like under the kitchen sink, etc. (failure)
8) No outside poison. If you spray weed killer, you have to have a map telling where is is until it rains later. (failure, we're learning fast on this one though)
9) No splinters. (we gave up in 5 seconds)
10) Nothing small in entire house baby could choke on. Since baby puts everything in mouth. (partial success)

This list could go on, literally, forever. But the point is that although we definitely put Berkley second as often as possible, as often as possible is about 3% of the time. A baby is an enormous amount of commitment and work. Your life, in no way, shape or form, belongs to you (or your accouterments) any more, until the baby goes to sleep, which makes 8pm a wonderful, wonderful time of night.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Out to Eat

Berkley has grown quite a bit lately and life is a bit easier. We are still quite the slaves to his nap schedule, but he's down to almost 2 good naps a day, so this means we have more flexibility to go out for longer periods of time.

So, when we're out we often get hungry and want to eat. So, we go to a restaurant. This is more difficult than advertised.

You'd think we could just grab a high chair, plop him in it, give him a toy and enjoy a meal. Ah, no.

Here are the issues with that little slice of utopia.
1) He doesn't like to sit in the chair for more than approximately 4 seconds.
2) Whatever he is playing with he throws on the floor every 10 seconds.
3) He is loud sometimes, and at 8 months doesn't quite get "shhh."
4) Sometimes he's getting towards nap time, and so he wants to be held.
5) Sometimes his teeth hurt, so he wants to be held, and whine.
6) Although he feels great and doesn't mind the chair, and hasn't dropped the toy, the salt, pepper, our food, and anything else that is not okay for him to play with is infinitely more interesting and he wants it.

So, when spending hard-earned money to go out and eat, there is a 7% chance we enjoy a meal, and a 940% chance one of us tends to him while the other eats, then the other gets their food boxed up to take home so he can take the next nap in today's schedule.