Sunday, January 29, 2017


My kids have two distinct personalities. Edie can be sweet, Marty can rage. Edie likes it when we blow on her tummy, Marty doesn't. Edie refused to be swaddled, Marty won't sleep without it. And yet they both had one thing in common this week: Razor. Sharp. Fingernails.

Edie loves to look at me with a sly smile and try to pry her fingers into my mouth. It's not a particularly fun game in the best times, but when her nails are long, it's like someone shoving knives in there. 

Marty doesn't quite have the motor skills to do something like that on purpose, but sometimes we'll be holding him, and he'll thrash and flail and catch us across the face. (I'm not entirely convinced it's accidental.)

We have good, sharp kids.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

A crown

Tamsen and I have both found in the last few months that we're not seeing things as well as we used to, so we took MLK Day and went to visit the eye doctor to get our prescriptions updated. Going to the eye doctor requires heading back to civilization for us, all the way up to Kentucky. On the way back, we stopped by a Burger King for lunch/dinner, and the lady at the window was thoughtful enough to give us a crown. (It took me a couple of moments after she handed it to me before I realized that it was for Edie, not me.)

Edie took some time to warm up to it, but she's been pretty fond of it this week.

She's taking some pretty big steps when it comes to spontaneous speech, which we're very pleased with. She can and does say things like "give it to me," "I want Daddy's watch," and "where are some cookies?" For now, the effort she's making to say things on her own is enough, but maybe someday it wouldn't kill her to add a please and thank you in there, too.

Marty, as ever, alternates between sleeping and being in a towering rage. It's been interesting to see the contrasts between him and Edie. I remember Edie as being a relatively calm child, though she cried like any other infant did. Marty seems to be less sad and more mad most of the time, as though we are inflicting things on him, personally. (I promise we're not.) If anything, it's the reverse; this picture here comes from a moment tonight when he threw up all over himself and Tamsen, then tried to act all coy about it while Tamsen put new clothes on him.

He's a jerk, and Edie's a jerk, too, but they're our jerks.

Monday, January 16, 2017


Time got away from me yesterday, but I promise I haven't forgotten.

Edie is loud when she's at home. We still haven't quite mastered the concept of an indoor voice, much to the dismay of Tamsen and me. She loves to jump and shout and enjoy herself, and that's great, but not ideal when we're trying to keep Marty asleep, or when one of us is on the phone, or really anytime at all. Worse, she's gotten very good at the word "no," so if we ask her to be calm and quiet, she says no and keeps on keeping on.

She still loves watching Daniel Tiger and SpongeBob with either of us on the couch, though, so we end up seeing this view of her quite a bit. We could certainly do worse.

Marty is a little over three months old now, and it's hard to believe there was a time without him. He alternates between being cheerful and furious, so we try to cherish the cheerful times as much as we can. (They don't come too often, sadly.) For an infant, though, he has a surprisingly well-developed range of facial expressions. The one I especially like is this one, which seems to say, "What, you got a problem with me?"

We have good kids. I mean, pretty good, at least.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

3 months, 3 years

Now that there are two babies and most of you have precious few chances to see either of them, I figure I'd better start telling you about them.

Marty is three months old now. He smiles like it's his job, which is also his approach to puking and pooping. He's getting good at holding his head up, but so far, he's mostly using his head as a weapon when either Tamsen or I are holding him. He's improved sleeping to the point where he can usually go the whole night waking up no more than once. We're certainly pleased about that. Also, he's enormous. I don't have a picture of it, unfortunately, but he got to meet up with his cousin Truman for Christmas, who is a month younger than him and about a third the size. When Marty had his two month checkup, he was nearly 14 pounds, and from the feel of him sleeping on my chest right now, he probably weighs close to seventy now. Fat babies are good babies. (Also, I just kissed him while he was sleeping on my chest and woke him up because my beard stabbed him. Oops.)

Poor Edie spent the last bit of our trip back to Oregon sick, so she's just coming out of it now. She's a good girl, but like any three year-old, she has some peculiar fixations that can drive us up the wall. She's insistent that she only wear her owl pajamas to bed, which we wouldn't mind but for the fact that they're for a two year-old, so it's sort of like squeezing a ham into a tube sock. She also insists that she wear her shoes and socks to bed. It's tempting to resist and tell her she needs to wear something different, but if she's going to sleep, honestly, that's good enough for me.

She's still not speaking great, but we can tell the speech therapy classes she goes to are worth their while. She can string four to six words together now by herself, which is more than the two that she could do when she started. It's encouraging to have her talking to us and asking for things that she wants instead of just pointing and screaming. She can also recite full episodes of Daniel Tiger, but those don't really feel like independent thoughts to me, so I don't think those count.

I'll try to do this more often.