Wednesday, February 27, 2008

nana and grandpa's house

Eliana does not only having a loving and doting set of grandparents who have temporarily re-located to Missoula to help their son and daughter-in-law out with childcare, she now has a Nana and Grandpa who actually OWN a house just a few miles up the road. At Nana and Grandpa's Eliana has her own bedroom (with both a crib and a big girl bed), a swing, lots of great toys and a plush rug for playing around on. It is such a sweet thing for me to drop her off at her Grandparent's beautiful place, knowing that she'll be not only loved and cared for, but she'll be able to enjoy the gorgeous mountain views, spacious rooms and hot tub to boot! Here are a few pictures I snapped the day after they closed. More to come soon....

Monday, February 25, 2008

six month visit

Eliana had her six month visit today and is doing spectacularly. She weighed in at a whopping 15 pounds and measures 26 inches long. She charmed the pants off the nurse and doctor, only wailing when she had her third round of shots. She then came home and practiced walking with her daddy. Catch a bit of the action here!

Friday, February 22, 2008

mrs. big stuff

"early spring" has arrived in missoula and i've been spending my afternoons walking with my little posse - elie and lucy. today we did the downtown loop, taking the river trail home. as i watched the sun sparkle on the clark fork and looked up at the snow slowly melting on mt. sentinel, i passed another new missoula mom on the trail. her little guy was bundled up in the bjorn on her chest. we did the missoula smile and nod. i wasn't too interested in talking because eliana had finally fallen asleep and i didn't want to stop the motion of the stroller to chat. but she started it.
"how old is she?"
"seven months."
"what about him?"
"oh, just seven weeks."
"wow. you know, just like they say, it goes fast. and it's hard to imagine they are ever that little."
"yeah. can i see your little one."

i remove the hood from the carriage revealing a set of luxuriously long lashes folded, a perfect little button in a snowsuit.

"wow. she is big! how big was she at birth?"

clearly this woman has not spent much time with babies. my petit muffin? big?

and then i looked at her from this woman's perspective and remembered all those "big babies" i remember seeing when elie was a brand newborn. babies with dried snot beneath their soft noses (check). babies with crusty food stuck to their faces (check). babies big enough to sleep in a stroller (check).

and i realized, once again, how this is moving too quickly, how she's growing up too fast.

so as i sit here this friday night with a glass of wine, blogging away, whooping it up mommy style - a style that is quiet and introspective, aware and devoted - i'm not thinking of the movie in town i want to see, or the dinner with a girlfriend i had to decline. i think about how, soon enough, she won't need my ear pressed to her nursery door, my breast ready to roll, my heart ready to break into a million pieces because i would do anything to keep her happy and safe. i think about all the children i teach and how, just seven/eight/nine years ago, they were asleep in cribs, crying out in need, desperate and so very dependent and how evolved and bright and aware they are today. and again, i choose instead to cherish this time, to be here now, to try and relish every moment before they melt like the winter snow, like the ice cracking on the sidewalk.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

babes in toyland

my girl has finally discovered her toys. they are no longer just decorative presents that adorn her crib. they are legitimate, enlightening, beloved, entertaining, all encompassing fun tickets. she loves to play her radio by bashing it upside down on the carpet. i'm sure she thinks her alligator is real, especially when we make his tongue vibrate. and miss spider's many limbs are endlessly fascinating.

how can one little person be capable of this much joy?

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

flying time

One thing I just can't seem to get over is how quickly someone can physically change. This little girl has gone through what seem like daily transformations. Now that she's a whopping, seven months old, I thought it was time to do a mini retrospective of how far she's come. What a beauty!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

sick girl

my girl is sick for the first time. her little, round nose is running lots of clear liquid and she's thrashing about in her crib, trying to get to sleep in a way that will help her sinuses drain. i'm out here trying to distract myself, as my back is killing me from hunching over her crib for so long and i'm realizing that there's really nothing else i can do at this point to help her get comfortable. i've nursed her, rocked her, walked her. her room has enough vaporous, eucalyptus steam to pass as a spa in some exotic locale and i'm just waiting for her to settle in. her naps and sleep since she's been sick have been long and wheezy, it's just taking her longer to get herself situated.

i would do anything to make her feel better. it's now been two hours of thrashing. i just went back in, lifted her up, and nursed her until she fell asleep in my arms. after ever-so-gently detaching her from my breast and placing her back in her crib, she seems to be settled. for now.

i can't imagine how i'll handle her vomiting or having chicken pox or a broken bone, or, god forbid, all the others of horrible things that will inevitably cross our path. for now, i'm glad to finally have her settled, glad the mucous is clear, glad she's generally such a good sport because i definitely need some good modeling every now and then. her thrashing in her crib so reminds me of myself when i can't sleep. she was doing these crazy little porpoise rolls trying to get comfortable. she'd lift her head, let out a little cry, flip around on her back, thrash around -- it feels like me on an extra hormonal night, some evil of the day running around in my brain like a hamster on a wheel, keeping me from settling, punishing me in advance for whatever seems to have me all worked up as i flip flop from side to side trying to make it all go away.

i just hope with my little one, it's just a bug. hope that her mind and emotions are filled, only, with all things snowy and white and pure and good. hope that i will be able to keep her from sleepless fits and bad nights.

Friday, February 15, 2008

stand up

So the other night, Jeff and I were trying to get Eliana to take a nap while we ate dinner. She had missed her afternoon nap (see preceeding post....walking with the ladies meant that the little one didn't have her crib time) and I was all worried about her not sleeping that night because she was "off schedule". She was making the nuttiest noises from her crib that we tried to ignore as we made our way through our steaks. But these sort of strained, laughing grunts continued and I could only picture her in some sort of trouble ("worst case scenario" mind play is something I seemed to have picked up about six months ago...). So I sent Jeff in to her room to check and make sure that she wasn't choaking on a toy or suffocating under a blankie. Jeff then shook his head, started to laugh, and waved his hand my way mouthing "come quick!" I rushed to the door and there, plain as day, Eliana stood, holding on to the top bar of her crib, smiling with a sneaky, toothless grin, as if to say, "Here I come, world! Just you wait!"

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

here now

transitions have never been my thing. leaving the warm comforts of sunny cali and my beauteous family have left me feeling a bit empty and lost the past few days. but if there's one thing that really helps ground me and count my lucky stars for my sweet life here, it's hanging with my mama posse. there was this incredible, serendipitous thing that happened in this valley last year, and now here we all, a walking ad for the ergo baby carrier and the chariot stroller. i love these women. they are real and honest and good and true. i put out the group "sos it's too cold and slushy here" email the other night, and there they were, at my door, promptly yesterday after work. a few times around the park and i felt myself settling back into my groove. the only thing i wish is that we had more time to break it down. but i know there are many more walks, many more dinners, and heck, perhaps we'll even get together without the little ones for a glass of wine sometime soon and really let loose. for now, i'll take this moment to appreciate all i have here and try not to dwell on what i left. and as i watch little peanut play on the floor with miss spider, all tough and independent and curious, and i think about what a bright, lovely little creature she's turning into, i feel thankful that i'm giving here a stellar posse of girlfriends to grow up with.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

groundhog's day

i had the pleasure of celebrating groundhog's day in southern california where you really have no idea what season it is and it really doesn't mater how long you have to wait for spring because the flower's are already in bloom. my time in los angeles was fulfilling, exhausting and, ultimately, super sunny. i'm having a bit of a tough time getting back into the slushy gray that is missoula in february. i know, i know, it was 45 and warm today, what am i complaining about? i guess it's that it was 78 and the air was fragrant just yesterday as i sat outside eating unagi and hamachi with my mama. ah the good life. anyway. it is good to be back in my house, with my man, and i'm settling into the reality that is winter in most parts of the world. but to preserve the memory, here are a few pics of the girl enjoying her sunny roots.

oooh!!! and welcome to the world avi michael neta, baby boy of dearest melissa and leeor! baby avi shot out of miss meliss on friday night and was almost born on the road (they got to the hospital at 8:15 and he was born at 8:26!) another beautiful teeny tiny one joins our lovely world!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

greetings from los angeles

eliana plays with the "clicker" - a new toy for this tike who doesn't see much t.v. with her folks out in the country...
the sheraton provided eliana with this lovely, white crib...
but the highlight of her adventures is playing with cousin piper's old "steering wheel" - it goes 'honk honk' and everything! it's just another day in l.a. for this little girl!

eliana and i have been busy, busy, busy since our arrival in l.a. on friday. i spent three days at a wonderful, enlightening conference while eliana hung out in the hotel room with her gran. this mommy's brain was thrilled to be learning and engaged with other professionals and it was lovely to know the little missy was just a few floors up, waiting for my return. this week i'm subbing at the high school i used to teach at for my poor sissy who is recovering from knee surgery. again, gran is busy watching the spitfire. so while i don't have much time to be too witty, i promised hubby i'd put on a few pics of sweet sauce.