Thursday, August 31, 2006
Doesn't he look just like he's reclining in an easychair, lol! Hand on one knee, other hand resting on the arm rest. All he needs is a remote control and a tellie ;).
Last night he was sitting with me in the laundry while I was folding up some washing. Jak came in and started eating his doggie biscuits. Munch crunch, that sort of thing. Next thing, Jamie is laughing hysterically. Seems like Jak crunching away is just too funny.
I raced to get the camera to take a video. These moments must be recorded. Only to find that the memory card was still in the laptop from when I'd uploaded this photo earlier. Grrr. Race back to the laptop, grab memory card, stuff it into camera, turn camera on, race back to laundry. Just caught the tail end of the laughter and then much concentration as Jamie did a poo. ROFL, what a moment to capture!
26 degrees here today. We're off for a walk.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Look at how his little feet are sticking out the end. And, yes, they're little Tigger slippers :). They rattle and he loves them.
I must remember to take photos today of the new seat. He does look so cute in it. It's like a big armchair for him still :)
We drove up to my parents' and he faced forwards the whold way and loved it! So much to see.
And I loved it too. He looked so grown up, perched up on his new seat. And he was such good company. He was busy chatting away to me and looking all around you.
Yesterday he drank from his sippy cup all by himself! All growing up.
I have decided that I mustn't give him beef for a while. He's been throwing up a lot lately. About four times in as many weeks. And I mean real throwing up. Projectile until his stomach is empty. It twigged the other day that it's happened everytime he's eaten beef. So, I've ditched all the beef that was in the freezer (just in case) and he won't be eating it again anytime soon. Did anyone else ever experience that with their baby? I'm thinking that either he's decided that he's gonna be a vegetarian or his tummy is just still to immature to handle red meat.
He's also decided to wake up for not only an 11pm feed, but also a 4am feed. Groan. This has also been going on for the last month. Where did my good little sleeper go? At least last night he went straight back to sleep. The last month, it's taken me roughly an hour and a half to feed him and put him back to bed. And only ten minutes is feeding! The rest is rocking him and etc. So that he doesn't wake up Phil.
Clever little boy; I think that he's realised that's the deal! He never cries at any other time when he goes to bed. Because I just put him in his bed and walk out the room. And he probably knows that crying is of no use. But at 4 am, when I don't want him to wake Phil, I rock him and cuddle him. And I reckon he's learnt. So, sorry Phil, but he might just have to cry for a bit for the next few nights. Because an hour and a half is not on!
Well, it's a beautiful day here today. We're off shopping for Fathers Day presents. And a walk around the block. Have a good day everyone!
Monday, August 28, 2006
This is the scene that I watch over from the shower every morning. I leave the bathroom door open so I can keep my eye on Jamie. He sits and plays with his playgym. These days "playing" entails trying to drag it from one side of the mat to the other, rocking it from one leg to the other, or turning it upside down.
Let's try for another photo.
This is Popcorn. I'm trying to locate another Popcorn at the moment as Jamie has gotten very attached to him. Isn't he cute? And he doesn't have any bits that could get chewed off.
Jamie's not crawling yet, but he's trying. He rocks himself up on that front leg, but it gets wedged under his butt and he hasn't worked out how to get the knee of his back leg up under him yet. But he sits there rocking earnestly, so I think it won't be long. See Popcorn in the background?
His favourite book :)
And my favourite photo at the moment. Isn't it weird how sometimes the camera sees things that we don't? I was stunned when I uploaded this photo onto the computer to see the resemblance to my father. Uncanny.
Have a great day everyone!
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Jamie was an absolute charmer all day :). He stole the show mid-way through my reading. I was talking about a contraption I remembered in my grandparents' garden. My grandfather had rigged it up to scare the birds away. When you pulled the cord, it went "aaaark". Well, I was carrying on, talking about this contraption and going "aaark". Quick as a flash, from the front row (where he was sitting on Mum's lap) we heard this little mimic - "aaark" in the cutest baby voice. Everyone laughed. A lighthearted moment in the sorrow.
For those that are interested - here's what I said - a granddaughter's recollection of her grandmother:
I was blessed to have my Grandma in my life for forty one years. Forty one years of memories. Forty one years of special times that exist only between a grandchild and their grandparent.
What do I remember? Oh, so many things.
I remember elegance. I remember perfect hats with netting. I remember patent leather shoes with matching handbags. I remember long coats with fur collars and brooches that held them closed.
I remember sitting on Grandma’s bed at Nailsworth watching her get ready to go out. I was fascinated by the ritual of dressing, powdering and perfuming. I remember that she had perfume that smelt like musk lollies. It came in a faceted crystal bottle. Oh, how I longed to have perfume like that, when I was grown up!
I recall that it would take Grandma a long time to get ready. It had something to do with what she called her “undergarments”. These were a source of fascination for me. They looked very stiff and uncomfortable to this little girl. I myself hated anything stiff and scratchy near my skin. But Grandma didn’t seem to mind. After she was dressed, Grandma would powder her nose and put on her lipstick - she never went out without her lipstick. She would put on her watch and her magnificent rings. And then, finally, she would be ready.
I remember walking with Grandma. We would walk up to the shops. This pattern of a daily walk was something that Grandma maintained most of her life. I can still smell the sweet smell of vanilla milkshakes that would hit me as we walked in the door of the corner shop. Sometimes we would walk to the hairdressers where Grandma got her hair “set”. I always wondered what it meant to get your hair “set”. I could only assume it meant those tight, neat, white curls that Grandma had all over her head.
Wherever we walked, we had to be back home by 3.30pm. We had to be back to watch Grandma’s “programs” on the TV. Sonia and I would sit there on the couch with Grandma and watch Days of our Lives and General Hospital, captivated by the dramas.
I remember spending school holidays at Grandma’s. I would wake to the smell of burnt toast. Grandma (or Grandpa) must have liked it chargrilled. As a child, it never occurred to me to ask. I just accepted that was how it was at Grandma’s house. Now it’s one of those questions that will remain unanswered. I also remember coco pops. Only at Grandma’s house were we allowed to eat coco pops. Oh, we were spoilt!
I remember the coo of pigeons. I remember the hum of the weathervane. I remember the “aaark” of the contraption that Grandpa had rigged up to scare the birds off the garden. We would clamour for a chance to pull the cord and make that wonderful “aaark” sound. I remember walks with Grandma around the backyard, learning about beans growing up vines, about pumpkins snaking along the ground, and watching petunias flower.
I remember Grandma’s cooking. Scalded milk sitting on the stove. Clotted cream in the ‘fridge. Jam tarts in alfoil trays, cooling until teatime. Rhubarb pies. Cornish pasties. Christmas cakes and Christmas puddings. Oh I remember her Christmas pudding!
I remember gadgets. The rotary bread slicer that was clamped onto the end of the kitchen counter. The egg slicer that cut hardboiled eggs into perfect slices like magic. I remember the giant stereo that sat in the hallway. It had a microphone that you could sing through, to the music. I remember a toybox that contained princess tiaras and knights’ armour. I remember fun times at the kitchen table – playing snap or “Old Maid’. I remember a giant billatel table, sitting under retro curtains in the back verandah. I remember a piano that mysteriously played all by itself – oh, wonderful amazing tunes- if you pumped the foot pedals.
I remember warm hugs. I remember hiccups and squeaks - regular, expected after each meal. I remember a Grandma who was quite proper. But she was also up for a laugh. I remember a Grandma who would whip out her false teeth at the table to make the grandkids laugh. Much to the consternation of the adults present. I remember a Grandma who indulgently joined in the fun when her grandchildren would tease her about what happened to the rest of the brandy she opened for the Christmas cake.
I remember a Grandmother who cared. Upon moaning to her day that the kids at school were teasing me and calling me Gingernut, Grandma confided that at school the kids had teased her too. They’d called her Lollylegs. Oh my! How I loved that! Lollylegs. It conjured up images of lollypops for legs. How fantastic! And my Grandma did have good legs. Or “pins” as she would call them. I would have much rather been called lollypop legs than gingernut head!
When I turned 29, I remember my Grandma telling me, not without some pride, that I must take after her in marrying so late. You see, she had married Grandpa when she was 29. Quite late in life, for her era. She was quite chuffed that I had remained unmarried for so long, just like her. Mind you, I think her pride in me was tested when I remained stoically unmarried well into my 30s. Bless you Grandma!
I am blessed that she was alive to meet my son, nine months ago. And, I didn’t mind it that, in the end as she became vague and drifted in and out of the present, that I became “Kathie and the baby”. Whilst the identity of “Kathie” might remain a puzzle to her, “Kathie and the baby” always seemed to elicit some sign of recognition. And so, I became the chauffeur, bringing her greatgrandson to visit. And I got to see another side of my Grandma. The side that gently played with the baby, waggled her fingers at him and delighted in his company.
They say that we live as long as we’re remembered. Well, Grandma, you are remembered and Grandma, you live on in our hearts.
And tomorrow we will return to our normal programming. And maybe blogger will play nice and let me post a photo or two or three.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
You are growing up so fast! I remember when I brought you home from hospital and lay you under your playgym. It seemed so huge, towering over you. You just lay there in your donut, staring about you. I would push the little Sesame Street characters back and forth, encouraging you to play with them. You’d just stare at them. I wondered when on earth you were going to be advanced enough to actually interact with them. And almost in the blink of an eye, you were playing with them, laughing with them, cupping them in your hands and turning them around to examine them. Next, you found the little spinning dials on the side of the playgym and worked out that you have to hit the top of them to make them spin. And this month, you’ve taken the use of the playgym to its next (and I suspect, final) level. You have learnt to pick it up, to push and pull it along the floor and to turn it over. Such a boy!
You’ve become a real little personality this month. A perfect little person. You are cheeky. You love playing games. You laugh with us at our little jokes. You want to join in with Daddy and I when we’re doing things. You have the most captivating smile; flashing your little dimple and when you smile at me, I have to drop whatever I’m doing and smile back. You’ll catch sight of me watching you sometimes and give me a huge smile back. Aaah.
You are so expressive now. You call out to us when we’re near. “Err!” “Err!” You show us things. Even when we’ve only just given it to you moments before and so obviously know full well what it is you’re holding in your hot little hand. You lift your arms up when we walk past; a signal that you’d like to be picked up, thank you very much. If we should walk away from you the “Err!” escalates as you call out forlornly after our disappearing backs. We are continually reassuring you that we’ll be back straight away. If I’m down on the floor sitting with you, you launch yourself at my chest and nestle into me, begging to be cuddled in my lap. As I pick you up, you kick your legs delightedly and coo. Your head nestles into the crook of my neck and you exclaim with delight as you stroke my hair. That melts me, Rabbit. I just go all weak and gooey when you do that. I could sit all day feeling the perfect roundness of your warm little head.
I’ve also witnessed you being shy this month. For the first time, you buried your head in my chest when we arrived at Grandma's and she smiled at you for the first time. You warmed up to her quickly and were smiling and giggling with her in no time, but your initial shyness came as a surprise because you hadn’t been at all shy up until now.
You still don’t have much hair. Well, you have more hair, it’s just that it’s very fair and very blonde, so it doesn’t really show. You’ve grown in length and are now 71cm long. You’re almost 8kg. Almost big enough for us to turn your car seat around. Almost. In the next couple of weeks, I reckon. You had a change in wardrobe this month, as you’ve moved into size 0 clothes. I love organizing your new wardrobes. It’s been such fun because you’ve been growing so fast and I haven’t had a chance to get bored with your clothes yet. Every three months we have a whole new wardrobe to try out!
You love sitting up and playing with your things or jumping in your Jolly Jumper. When you’re sitting, you’ve become quite good at leaning to the side to reach things. You lean so far to the side that your back leg lifts right off the ground. You’d be on your hands and knees except that your front foot gets wedged underneath you and you don’t know how to lift yourself over it yet. When you discover that, you’ll be off crawling! There’s no rush though, Rabbit. All in your own time. I like it that you’re still fairly immobile. I’m not looking forward to the day when I have to start running around after you.
This month I’ve let you sit out on the lawn. The days are warming up and, even though the grass is still a bit damp, I figure that you’ve got all that nappy padding on and you shouldn’t get too wet. You love feeling the grass, fingering the blades with curiosity, pulling at them and watching what happens. I’m continuously fishing clover leaves out of your mouth. I have to make sure all the leaves are out of reach so that you can’t pick them up and put them in your mouth too. Every now and then you find one and stick it in your mouth. If it’s long enough, I hear you gagging on it as it tickles the back of your throat.
Speaking of gagging, this month we’ve all had gastro. You had it first and you had it the worst. You had a high temperature and were throwing up for a full 24 hours. You just couldn’t hold anything down. You would only breastfeed and we went back to feeding you every couple of hours as you battled to keep your fluids up. It was horrible. But you didn’t complain. You slept lots, and when I came down with the same bug 4 days later I could understand why, because I felt so achey and lethargic. Poor bunny.
It took you about 10 days until you were back eating your food again. And for two weeks you were waking up at least once a night, sometimes twice, for a feed. After having had uninterrupted sleep for all this time, it was quite hard for me to get used to waking up during the night again. I’m happy to say that the last two nights you’ve slept through. Yay! You have gone back to being a perfect sleeper too. All that trouble last month, it’s hard to believe. You hardly fuss at all when I put you in your bed these days.
Your attachment to Popcorn has grown this month. You insist on bringing him with you when you wake up from a sleep. When you were sick and I had to feed you during the night, you’d wake up clutching little Popcorn and I would have to struggle with you to remove him from your mouth so that I could feed you. You told me off in no uncertain terms! I have to watch over little Popcorn though because you do have a tendency to drop him on the ground after a time, and Jak never fails to run off with him. I’m always rescuing your poor teddy bear from the back lawn or the hallway runner. I don’t like to think what would happen if we lost him!
Someone asked me the other day if I've started planning your first birthday party yet. I just looked at her in shock. Good Heavens! Is it nearly a year already? I guess it is.
I love you so much my little boy.
Sunday, August 20, 2006
And I remembered her last words to me:
"Is that Ern?", she said.
I had been visiting her. She'd been asleep and I'd sat by her bed waiting for her to wake. When she'd woken up she was weak, vague, sleepy. We had talked, Jamie had sat in her arms and they'd played together. I'd been ready to leave and let her return to her slumbers. I had been walking out of her room, pushing the pusher. And she called after me. It stopped me in my tracks. It brought tears to my eyes. Ern, my Grandfather who had been dead 30 years.
At the time I put it down to her confusion and vagueness. I remember wondering how to tell my Grandmother that Grandpa was dead. She seemed so happy to be seeing him there. I remember saying "No, Grandma, Grandpa isn't here today". And walking out the room. Feeling sad that my Grandma was in a different time dimension to me now. That the connections with her had gone.
Now I find myself wondering. Wondering if I had been the one who was confused. And I am hoping that she did see him. Hoping that he was there. Hoping that he was there to accompany her on her final journey. Together again after all those years.
Saturday, August 19, 2006
perfect hats with netting, patent leather shoes, matching handbags
coats with fur collars and brooches that held them closed
perfume that smelt like musk lollies
a powdered cheek, lipstick
burnt toast in the morning, cocoa pops
home-made jam tarts in little alfoil trays
scalded milk on the stove, clotted cream
retro curtains in the back room
walks to the shop
having to be back by 3.30pm for her "programmes"
hiccups and squeaks
gadgets - the bread slicer; the egg slicer
the coo of pigeons; the hum of the weathervane
a stereo with a microphone you could sing through
my Grandma 4.11.1908 - 19.8.2006
Remembered with love.
Missed so much already.
Friday, August 18, 2006
Well, I forwarded a brief to For Keeps intending on using this photo in a layout. But they were so taken with the toys, that they asked me to create a layout inspired by them for their "inspired by" pages.
This was the result.
So different from my usual pages, don't you think? Cleaner perhaps? I dunno. I didn't know what to make of it at first. But it's grown on me. I love those photos of Jamie, taken by Grant Walkley (who else?). Little fingers and toes :).
Jamie and I spent the day in town today. He loves being amongst the people. No chance of sleeping when there's a crowd, lol. He was such a happy fella. Grinning and cooing all day. Hanging out of the pram with excitement, lol. He's flaked now though. Out cold. Which is good. Phil's out for tea with the boys, so I have some precious scrapping time. Yay!
Have a great weekend everyone!
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Don't forget: how he snuggles into my neck... how he lies like a frog with his legs curled up... how his little hand kneads my waist while he's feeding... how he helps me change his nappy by lifting his legs... how he sucks on his sleeve... his milk-drunk look at the end of a feed... how he's just learnt about splashing in the bath... how he coos when he's happy... how his hands cover his mouth when he smiles...how his eyes roll back in his head with bliss when he starts to feed... his solemn look of concentration when we're out somewhere... how tiny newborn nappies are... how he wraps his arm around me... how small 0000 clothes are.
This one was inspired by my anxiety that I was going to forget all the beautiful things about Jamie when he was newborn. All the little newborn things that he did. And, you know, when I read it now, just a few months later I find that I *had* forgotten about them. Thank goodness for scrapbooking!
The brief for this page was "text". Mixing it up. I chose to showcase brushwork on the photo for the title - mixing cursive and grunge fonts. The text theme extends to the background paper, the text epoxy sticker and the mix of stamping and handwriting for the journaling.
And as much as I wanted to record all the things I love about being a mum, I also needed to write about all the things that had me in tears. The flipside. The same design, but more sombre tones and a crying baby, lol.
I love being a Mum, I really do. I can't believe the depth of my feelings for this little man. That's not to say that it doesn't have its downsides. Like seven weeks of colic... endless crying... nappy dramas... not being able to get away for more than 45 minutes on my own... 2am feeds... sleep deprivation... hours and hours rocking a basinette... backache... nipple soreness... curdled milk on my clothes... drool patches on my shoulders... the relentless routine... But you know what? It's so worth it!
It's all about keeping it real! I don't want to look through my albums in twenty years time and see an impossibly rosy picture.
Which led me to thinking about the photos I take. I have forgone so many opportunities to take snapshots over the last six months because I was worried that they wouldn't be perfectly composed photographs. Because our house is too dark. Because I would have to use a flash. Because the house was a mess and the background was too cluttered. Grrr. How stupid! Nic's blog today made me realise that I've missed so many opportunities to take photos of Jamie. So from now on, I'm going to try to take a photo a day. Even if it is badly composed, dark, blurry, messy. Whatever! I just want to capture how he interacts with his world. There are only so many layouts you can do of the perfectly composed portrait. I don't want an album full of perfect headshots that tell me nothing about Jamie's life at the time they were taken.
Ask me at the end of the month how I've gone with my goal, OK?
And, finally, I am sorry to report that there are no photos of Phil and I from Saturday night. There was no-one to take any photos!. And there was no time to rig up a self-timing thingo. Do you know how long it takes me to get ready to go out these days, lol?
Sunday, August 13, 2006
OK, here is another of my layouts that was in FK this month. Jamie was only six days old here. We were just ready to leave the hospital and take him home.
He's so tiny!
I wasn't really that happy with the colour of the LO in the magazine. It looked like they'd put a big dirty brown filter over the top of it. The last two pages I've had printed in the magazine have looked like that.
Yawn! I really feel like a catnap this afternoon. Phil and I went to a big charity fundraiser last night. Oh my goodness, it was wonderful to get all dressed up and go out together. But I'm paying for the late night today! I could have just gone to sleep in the sun out on the back lawn just now. I might go curl up on the couch in the window and do not much at all :)
Friday, August 11, 2006
I waited for so long for this smile. You had colic when you were real little and I guess you didn't have much to smile about. I'd think I'd glimpse a flicker of a smile and then it would be gone again. It was tough seeing you cry all the time. I just needed a smile of encouragement. Fast forward two months and you smile all the time. Big happy smiles that light up your face.
Jamie's first smile: 5 January 2006 at age 7 weeks.
Can you see it OK? It's a bit light here. It comes up better in the magazine.
Do you know how long I tried to get this smile on film? It was so elusive and fleeting at first and I would spend hours with the camera up to my face, waiting, waiting, waiting. But the very sight of the camera would vanquish any would-be-smile. As soon as it came out and my face disappeared behind it, Jamie would get all serious. One day I decided that I was going to keep taking photos until I captured it. I got such an assortment of photos. In fact, I ended up scrapping all of them too:
Jamie, you have the most beautiful smile. We first glimpsed it when you were 7 weeks old. Now, at 4 months, you smile at me all the time. But do you think I can capture it on film? No! As soon as I put the camera to my face you grow serious. Today I was determined to keep taking photos until I captured your smile. Look at these!
The most gorgeous, funny, sweet expressions.
OK, that'll have to do for today. Got a zillion things to do. That's one of the things about having a sick household - lots of things need attention, lots of deadlines missed, appointments rescheduled and all that type of thing.
See you and have a great weekend!
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Needless to say, it is complete chaos around here. I'm still suffering, and can't even bear to look at the dishes in the kitchen. The thought of cleaning dishes makes me want to hide my head in the nearest toilet bowl.
Being sick when you've got a baby just takes suffering to the next level, doesn't it? Especially when your baby is sick at the same time.
Happily, it would seem that we are all on the mend.
Happily, I am going to look super-slim for our big gala ball that Phil and I are going to this weekend coming :). There's nothing like a combination of increased breastfeeding and gastro to just peeeel those pounds away. Not something I'd recommend to others though.
That's all from us today.
Oh, is the new For Keeps out? I might upload my layouts tomorrow.
OK, see ya
Thursday, August 03, 2006
1. How old are you? 41
2. How many kids do you have if any? One - Jamie, 9 months
3. Are you married, single, divorced, widow? Married to Phil
4. What is your occupation? I'm a human resources consultant, specialising in occupational health and safety, but at the moment I'm a SAHM.
5. What are your passions? My family, my friends, my scrapping
6. Are you a dreamer or a dream seeker? I'm a dreamer
7. Are you happy with the way you life has turned out? Sure, there are some things that I'd love to turn the clock back for, after all you don't get to 41 without having a few regrets, but on the whole I'm pretty happy.
8. Are you a scrapper and if so how many hours a week do you scrap? Since Jamie has been born, I don't get as much time to scrap. Probably a couple of evenings a week.
9. What do you want to do before you die? See my son grow up and be happy.
10. What is your favorite food? Anything thai
11. What is the food you hate the most? Canned tomato soup
12. What is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you? Throwing my knickers on the electricity cables above our house when I was about 12 years old (don't ask!)
13. What is the happiest day of your life thus far? When Jamie was born.
14. Are you a neat freak? Or a dirty house cleaner? I am somewhere between the two of those. I hate doing housework with a vengeance, but I also get too stressed if the house is a pigstye (?sp).
That's enough thinking for one night!
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Poor little guy. He's only slight anyway, so he's feeling a bit like a feather at the moment. All he wants is breastmilk - about 10 feeds a day, two hourly day and night. What did I write in my last post about weaning, lol! I suspect I'll feel like a feather by the end of the week too! I managed to persuade him to have some rice cereal for breakfast and lunch. Not the huge bowlfulls that he was scoffing down previously, but a few teaspoons nonetheless.
Apparently there's a gastro epidemic in Adelaide at the moment. When I rang the child and youth helpline, thinking it was the yo-yo biscuits that I had fed him that had made him throw up (:0 and feeling extremely guilty), she assured me that gastro was rife and that most of the calls they'd been having had been worried mothers with babies that were throwing up.
One lovely benefit of him being sick was that he was such a mommy's boy. I did enjoy just sitting on the couch with him cuddled up on my lap. He would only sleep with one of us. I suspect this is fast becoming a habit though, so we'll have to go back to him sleeping in his cot again soon.
Here's some pictures of him in his jolly jumper. Look at that grin! We thought he looked like a mini cossack hopping and leaping about with that little hat on :).
See you all.