Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Watch that foot go!

This video's a few weeks old now. Got the "papa" to say something in French as requested. "Allez, danse toi." That means, literally "Come on, dance, you." He's gonna kill me for showing the world his big hair. Like Patrick Dempsey on Grey's Anatomy. Anyway, do you think she's got potential? A can-can girl already...

Adulthood is overrated

When I was ten I wanted to be an architect or astronomer, more because I liked the sound of the words than anything else, I think. I figured that as an adult I’d wear light grey suits and drive around in a grey BMW and live in a cute townhouse. It was the mid-80s and yuppies were my role model. My reality is slightly different.

I’ve had a lot of “reality bites” moments lately. I’ve been battling a cold perhaps sinus infection for a month, all the while having very little work (which would distract me a bit and plump up my bank account) and seeing very little of my husband (that durn precious machine of his). And I’ve been thinking that adulthood is just not all it seemed to be when I was a ten.

I didn’t realize there would be so much dish-washing and laundry involved. And that my husband would be so dead tired when he came home that it’s often out of the question to ask him for help. I can tell you it’s a sad moment when you stare down a sink of dirty dishes and realize that’s probably gonna be your job for the rest of your life (until baby gets tall enough to help).

And I don’t think my ten-year old self would have been pleased to know that when you’re sick as an adult, there’s nobody to pamper you. I know my dear mum would do it if she could, but there’s that ocean between us. And again, husband being snowed under with work, not much he can do. And with a darling baby (no sarcasm there, she IS darling), you just can’t pull the covers over your head because you’ve got a headache. A very lonely moment when I realized that one.

At ten I didn’t realize that paying bills is no fun at all, and yet there’s no end to it. Giving all your money to rent, electricity, taxes and then exciting things like food and medicine and if you’re lucky a teeny-tiny bit left over to pay off the airfare to America (the highlight of my year, believe you me!!!).

If I were to just take a look at the news I’d realize that even my worst day is probably an all-expense paid dream vacation for two-thirds of the planet. But I’ve always had trouble keeping things in perspective. So just let me wallow for a while and dream about those old days when responsibility meant making my bed and doing my homework…

Monday, February 16, 2009

Mechanically inclined (or not)

My husband has been working on this second-hand potting machine for about a month now. I think I could count the times he’s gotten home before 8 p.m. on one hand. I say it’s his mistress, Javo the Hut. That’s because he often would come home and watch demonstrational videos for a similar type machine on the Internet and the brand is Javo. I know the machine is vitally important for their business. It can put soil in pots, make the hole for the “baby” plant to go in, stock the finished pots on a table and now conveyor belt. I do admire my husband’s knowledge of mechanics and electricity (the latter of which is totally beyond me). But seeing so very little of him is getting quite old.

I, on the other hand, should probably be banned from touching any electrical appliances after last Saturday’s incident with the baby food processor. This was supposed to help me save money, by making my own baby food from time to time I wouldn’t buy as much of the industrial stuff. And it is better for baby. But I didn’t always respect the MAX line for the level of ingredients to put in. Result: some water got in the motor. And after chiding by making a humming sound for a few days, a bit more water must have gotten in there and mini-POW, SPARK and PUFF! No more electricity in the kitchen. I figured it was just the circuit breaker and reset it. But nothing was working. Even the phone and computer were out. For about ten minutes I panicked and even starting crying, thinking I’d totally burned all my appliances and wondering if my insurance would pay for this. Then I looked again at the electrical box in the hall and noticed the switches in the kitchen and living room were down. So I pushed them back up and PHEW, my appliances still work. Except for the baby mixer…

So much for saving money with that thing. Having to buy a second one has put a dent in that plan.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Roar, baby, roar!

There is some dead space in this video. Proof that babies don't take direction well. But you can see she's got something to say here, and you better listen!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

In response to Crystal’s “tag”, here are 25 things about me

1. I’m borderline OCD about some things. I have a tendency to position my feet within squares on tile floors, not on the lines.

2. I love that moment as you’re falling asleep when you’re in between consciousness and wakefulness. You can feel that you no longer control your thoughts but you’re not yet dreaming.

3. I love baking (if the recipe’s not too complicated), and for someone with a sweet tooth it’s great to be able to make a cake that you’re craving.

4. I’d go crazy if I couldn’t talk to myself. I have long monologues in English or French talking out my problems or imagining someone’s interviewing me.

5. My ideal day would be out in the fresh air in the English countryside, going back inside my floral-print decorated cottage to do some baking (see number 3). Or staying inside said cottage on a rainy day.

6. When I was a kid I had a crush on Dudley Moore and later the lead singer of Duran Duran. The video for Hungry Like a Wolf still does something to me.

7. I could probably eat plain rice or pasta every day.

8. I would have loved to be the person who makes announcements in airports. Maybe it’s still an option for me…

9. I often have the urge to dance in metros or waiting rooms when a good song comes on. And I wish everyone else would start dancing in choreographed moves with me.

10. I love the sound of a good thunderstorm when I’m inside.

11. I would like to and probably need to go on a make-over show.

12. When I was about 14 I seriously regressed and wanted to be 4 again. I even started watching Sesame Street again. I still have my Elmo doll from that period (the adolescent period, that is).

13. My pet peeve is when people mispronounce my name. But I know it’s tough to pronounce and even more so for the French. So if you’ve been saying it the wrong way (like that city in Italy), I won’t hold it against you. But for the record it rhymes with asylum, which is where I probably belong on most days. And I’m very proud of having a unique name all the same.

14. I probably visit the doctor too much. Three visits last week but one was to the dermatologist for my scalp, and the third back to my GP when this cold just kept bugging me and baby kept tugging on her ear. Turns out the latter is her new way to say she’s sleepy, according to the sitter.

15. Clutter stresses me, but you wouldn’t know it to visit my apartment. Same for a sink of dirty dishes, though again I let it accumulate. Sometimes I have to make that frustrated scream sound at all this mess. Then I go on the Internet and forget about it.

16. I’m addicted to Vicks Vaporub. Always have a tub on my night stand and often use it when I’m just having trouble falling asleep. It opens my airways and lets me relax a bit.

17. I’ve never been drunk. I just don’t like the idea of vomiting and losing total control of myself. I don’t even like hearing about other people getting to that point.

18. I love the smell of clean laundry and it takes me a long time to choose my new fabric softener scent.

19. I’d much rather spend a Saturday night on the couch chilling with my hubby than clubbing. Too bad he doesn’t always agree with me.

20. I think all men look good in blue, no matter what their coloring.

21. I’m really a shy person but I thrive on communication. I love to start up conversations with people in the grocery store.

22. I’m always in search of the perfect under eye cream or night repair cream. I’m also becoming a bit obsessed with looking at other women’s forehead wrinkles.

23. Sentimental TV movies make me cry. Just the sappy music makes me cry.

24. I’m horrible at filing my own paperwork. I let the old bank statements pile up for months until there’s no room to store them in the “in-box” on the bookshelf.

25. I’m addicted to the Internet, but I think you knew that. When I’m feeling down about something, the need to check my email is overwhelming.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Thursday, February 5, 2009

To nap or not to nap

Ah, those glorious days when I could waste a good hour or more on a nap. Simply because it was gray outside. Or my ambitious efforts at sorting mail and paperwork had really tuckered me out.

Now I’ve got the world’s least nappingest baby (yes, it could be a word). We have to trick her into it. A ride in the stroller or simply putting her in her coat can sometimes do the trick. And very rarely she’ll nod off in the day and even more rarely in her crib. She does sleep through the night, and this is a no small thing considering how tough some of those first weeks were.

Now whenever she actually does nap I’m faced with a dilemma. Should I use this precious time to nap myself or try to take care of the million things that I never seem to get done? One afternoon after picking her up from the sitter’s she was still passed out in her stroller seat. But hunger was getting the better of me and I heated up my quiche and ate that along with a yogurt and apple. Of course, the minute I stepped into the kitchen, Chat-chat started meowing the most annoying of his meows- the one that can peel paint and make me want to strangle him with a chain of Twistie ties. And once I clear my plate, he’s up on the table in the moment it takes me to turn my head, ready to lick any small crumb of food.

Yes, we could say I’m having a conflictual relationship with Chat-chat at the moment. My cuddly feelings toward him have definitely decreased since baby was born. And to think that before baby was even a real idea to me, I found it hard to imagine loving something more than the cat. Or that I cried my eyes out in front of the vet when he was recovering from that balcony fall two weeks before baby was born. Now we spend most of our “quality” time like this:

Chat-chat (CC): Meow meow!!!
Me: Shut up!
CC: more insistant meowing and darting into the kitchen
Me: GRggghhhhh, shut the %*#! up!

It’s not pretty, I know, but when he jumps on the counter at every occasion, I just get a little annoyed.

Anyway, meal cleared away, I had this gnawing conscience telling me to do the dishes from last night. Yes, I let them sit overnight quite a lot (read: all the time). And even though it’s tempting fate to keep doing chores while baby graced me with her nap, I figured I’d be happier waking to a clean sink. That task accomplished, I settled down on the couch like a kid trying to sneak home after curfew. Baby was still sleeping and had been for an hour. I just knew she’d open those blue eyes the moment I closed my hazel ones.

Chat-chat took his cue and snuggled up on the blanket next to me. I have to say this for him, he has the uncanny ability to know when we’re napping and come keep us warm and cozy. This time he really went all out, snuggling next to my arms so I could use him as a live stuffed animal. And about 30 minutes later, baby woke up. But it was enough of a little snooze to have re-energized me a bit. And it gave me a chance to, temporarily, make peace with Chat-chat. Until the next time he licks the frying pan.