Sunday, May 24, 2009

C'est la Vie

In addition to a tied on bumper, only one side mirror, and malfunctioning doors and windows, my car also lacks a radio. Part of the saga of Dear Husband, Please Buy Me a New Car! I suppose. The tied on bumper, eh...I don't really notice it. The side mirror, don't really need it. I've grown accustomed to working out of only three doors and I have a handy set of pliers in case of an emergency window rolling down event (like, every time I go to McDonald's). But the radio...this one really kills me.

The thing is, I actually have a radio in the car. I got the car with a gaping hole where the stereo should be. No big deal when you are getting a free car from your mom, right? Well after driving around tuneless for a whole summer I was getting really desperate. The hums and groans of a manual transmission are only so appealing for so long. So I begged my friends, Mario and Matt, to help me find one of those awesome stereos that you can buy at Wal-Mart, the kind with the removable face-plate and then put it in the car. They obliged, because they are nice guys. But for some reason, we never could get the thing to work. So eventually, and I forget the details here, I got a nicer stereo (still from Wal-Mart with removable face plate) and we ended up paying $50 to the guy who lived across the street from us to put it in the car. And it worked! And for several years the stereo was my companion, belting out the songs I needed to hear no matter the time of day, the weather, or how many other things were falling apart.

The stereo held great power, made my slowly rotting car a thing I would gladly tolerate because I still had my Modest Mouse, my Hot Hot Heat, my Killers, my Bjork, my Working Title and my Explosions in the Sky.

And then one day, it died. My stereo just went out. And though for a while it would sporadically start working again, and I would leap for joy as the songs filled my car, I knew it would eventually stop working completely. That sad day has come (actually, it came about 4 months ago, but whatever.) and I am stuck in the tuneless box with nothing but the rattles and groans and squeals to keep me company. And yes, Norah's noises are included in the rattles groans and squeals.

I think Norah may mourn the loss of the tunes as much as I do, because she gets very angry if she has no music in the car. So I spend alot of time singing and talking to her as we drive around. I don't know how many times I have sung The Itsy Bitsy Spider. I probably sing it in my sleep. We sing solfege and scales in such dramatic fashion that Julie Andrews would weep. And recently we have started singing the ABCs, because eventually Norah is going to have to learn them, and I am really tired of the stupid soggy spider.

In addition to singing the ABCs, we spell words too. I don't know if you know this, but I am an excellent speller. Forward and backward. Which is why I always get to do the gnilleps puzzles in Cranium. (I hope I don't mis-spell anything in this post). So we spell things. Norah. Mama. Daddy. Pterodactyl. Ollie. Remington. Honduras. You get the picture. And when I spell for Norah, I do it very slowly, dragging out every letter so N-O-R-A-H becomes NNNNNNNNNNNNNNN-OOOOOOOOOOOOO-RRRRRRRRRRR-AAAAAAAAAAAAA-HHHHHH.

She usually spells with me, but her N-O-R-A-H sounds more like BEEEEHHHH-YAAAAAAAA-TTTTTTTT-EEEEEEEEEWWWWWW-GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! But its cute because she drags it out just like me, and because I am her mother so I think she is the embodiment of cute.

Actually, our spelling sessions remind me of this

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


I don't know why Norah and I seem to be a magnet for mother-baby indecencies.

When Norah was a few weeks old we went to this football scrimmage thing at the University of Arkansas. It was a big public event, with literally, thousands of people in the crowd. And Norah, being just a few weeks old, had no concept of the inconvenience of breastfeeding in that crowd. She decided she needed to eat, immediately! and I had no choice but to buck up and nurse her. In a crowd of thousands of strangers, and a few non-strangers. I was a breastfeeding novice at the time. I'm sure quite a few people got a free show.

Then, a few months later, I had to figure out how to go to the bathroom at Target with Norah in tow. I ended up walking out of the stall with my past unbuttoned and unzipped, doing that wide-legged waddle that you do when you are trying to keep your pants up.

Not long after that, we took Norah out to eat at Red Lobster. I took Norah to the bathroom to changer her diaper, and just as I got her wet diaper off and was about to put her clean diaper on, she peed. All over herself. Her entire onesie was soaked. And I am not the kind of mother that carries extra sets of clothes, though I frequently end up with three pairs of Norah's shoes in her diaper bag. So when faced with a pee soaked onesie and jeans, I did the only thing I could: I walked out of the bathroom with a nearly naked baby and pretended not to see the questioning looks as I walked by. Norah ended up eating her dinner wearing nothing but a puff-sleeved brown corduroy bomber jacket from Old Navy.

A few weeks ago I had the flying Dorito poop incident.

And yesterday we went shopping. At TJ Maxx I took Norah into the dressing room because she was getting tired of Rusty pushing her around in the cart. I tried on the first outfit, and when I looked down at Norah I realized she had something in her mouth, something that had not been there a moment before. "Norah" I said, bending down to her eye level "What is in your mouth?" She happily pulled out her treasure and handed it to me--a previously chewed piece of gum. A hardened piece of red gum that had, at one point, been in someone else's mouth, teeth marks still intact.

GAAAAHHH! First of all, ew. Second of all, I don't even want to think about what kinds of mangy bacteria may have been crawling around the previous gum owner's unwashed mouth. Third of all, PEOPLE! Why in the world would you leave your chewed up gum on the floor for babies to find and eat while their mothers are not paying attention to them. Their mothers are too busy are trying to decide whether they can get away with wearing a flowered dress that requires little bra support (to which the post-baby chest says a resounding "NO!").

Gum chewers of the world, I implore you: use the trashcan!

And now I'm thinking that maybe she got some ornery germs from the gum, because today we had our first time out session.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Littlest Dare Devil

So, Norah is still not walking. I mean, she's only 13 months old and the average walker is around 15 months, so its not abnormal or anything. Besides, she gets around plenty well crawling on all fours. She hasn't really figured out the climbing off the bed or the couch thing either. No matter how many times I try to get her to flip around and crawl down backwards she continues to try and go head first.

Today we went to two parks. The first park we went to with Rusty and he taught Norah how to climb up a slide. Then the second one, the one here in town...oh my gosh. Norah climbed up the little steps like a champ, though she has never crawled up steps before, laughing like a lunatic the whole time. Then. THEN! She got to the top of the play equipment and launched herself head first down the slide!

No fear. No waiting to make sure someone was at the bottom (though Jasmine was there, of course). She just crawled to the top, laid out, and flung herself down the slide.

Its amazing really, this little person in control of her body, with a strong will and a crazy laugh, this wonderful little girl that Rusty and I are raising. I wish I had taken a picture...

Friday, May 1, 2009


Bell Pepper and Jalapeno Plants

Radish Sprouts

Despite the fact that there has been virtually no sun in my corner of the world SATURDAY! I now own radish sprouts, pea plant flowers, onion sprouts, and two teeny tiny green tomatos.
Maybe I underestimated my gardening skills. Maybe I have such extraordinary latent gardening know-how, that my plants have no need for the sun. They can just bask in my awesomeness.

Obligatory Baby Photos