Saturday, June 30, 2007

is there a doctor in the house?

today we grilled with the reinicke's. b successfully defended his doctoral thesis and now has his PhD. he's thrilled. the process was so stressful that when he finally got through it, he literally collapsed from exhaustion and the release of tension.

so we had beer and barbeque to celebrate. pooka even helped us make a banner for him.

we had a very nice evening, although it started and ran later than we expected. pooka was very sad when they didn't show up on time. she was in her element, though, when they came and she could show off her room and her sister. (e has never been to our house and this was their first time meeting bug.)

Friday, June 29, 2007

3 month bug

we did some weeding in the garden when i got home today. i also harvested a whole bunch of raspberries. they are getting hard to reach now that the garden is booming. and it is booming. it's getting kind of crazy. the squash, zucchini, and tomatoes are all going gangbusters and crowding into each other. the tomatoes are going to well outgrow their cages. pooka accidentally pulled a beet so now we know that they're not ready yet. i figure beginning of august, since most of the seeds were planted around memorial day.

after dinner we went back out for awhile, but it turned into too much temptation for pooka. she wouldn't come in at bedtime. when i approached her, she started running away. unfortunately, her pants were not tight enough and they started dropping. i thought it would serve her right for running away from me to face plant right in the grass, but then i thought of all the sticks in the grass. kind of dangerous. we don't need a visit to CHM to treat a stick in the eye.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

bad mynah bird

we don't use a lot of bad language, but occassionally something slips out. pooka ends up hearing more from tv than we would like, plus we can't control the language she hears when we're out in public.

with pooka's uncanny ability to repeat things after hearing them one time, we're amazingly fortunate that she hasn't taken to using curse words and other bad language. so it was only mildly surprising when she slipped up recently. it was also highly amusing, although we can't let her know that.

item #1
awhile back, gamma, grandpa lou, and kisu were watching the barbaro movie. gamma was expressing much sympathy for the animal with lots of "aww's".

pooka didn't feel any compassion, apparently, and told her, "it's just a horse, gamma".

this went on for several minutes until pooka could take no more. "gamma, it's just a frickin' horse!"

item #2
tonight at dinner, pooka was having some trouble getting the food onto her fork. after several attempts her frustration was mounting and she let out, "what the hell?"

after verifying her exact words, i let her know that they were not appropriate and offered some alternatives: "what the heck?" "what the hey?" and "what the heeby-jeeby?"

this produced gales of laughter and hopefully got the point across without imbuing the bad language with any kind of forbidden appeal.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

want some cheese with that?

i'm a complainer.

i complain a lot.

i'd like to think that it's because i'm a perfectionist and i want everything to be just right.

i'd like to think that it's because i'm a problem solver and i'm challenging myself to see how i would make it better.

truth is, sometimes i just complain for the sake of complaining.

i get it from my dad. i love him, but he's an expert at complaining just to complain.

on the other hand, my mom totally rolls with the punches. sometimes she doesn't even complain when it would be justified.

i love my mom, too, but i never thought i'd see the day when i wished i could be more like her.

Monday, June 25, 2007

almost famous

we grabbed a copy of the newspaper today and also printed out the online version of the article. we showed the paper to the people at our favorite diner. they were excited.
when kisu pointed it out to pooka, she responded, "oh,dad, i can't help it. kids that do brave or very silly things are always going to be famous."

kisu said, "that's two times in the news."

pooka said, "i can't help it, i just do very silly things."

Sunday, June 24, 2007


the garden is really taking off, even though we forget to water it very often. this post is mostly to show off how freakin' cool my camera is. and i just discovered how to properly use some more of its functionality.


Saturday, June 23, 2007

camp casey

today was a wonderful day. from the weather to the activites to the behavior of the girls (until we got home) was absolutely perfect.

today we participated in camp casey, horse riding therapy for kids battling cancer. pooka waffled a lot about whether she wanted to go or not. all day yesterday it was off, "i refuse to go." just before bedtime she changed her mind. of course, what she wanted was irrelevant, but anyway.
today she was very eager to get moving. she was a little shy at first, but as is typical pooka, she warmed up after a few minutes. anybody showing her adulation wins her over quickly, and the wranglers gushed over her name tag art and asked her to decorate theirs. she was good to go from that point on. there were some fun activities, and of course the riding. at the end of the day, molly the director, asked us to attend a girls only function in september (manicure, dinner, and a limo to the miss michigan pageant to see one of the counselors compete, all courtesy of camp casey!) and to attend another camp day. pooka can't wait for another chance to ride the horses.

it was great to see so many other kids who have beaten, or are in a healthy stage of the process of beating, cancer. it made a nice change from seeing all the kids at the clinic who usually don't look so robust. the counselors were so nice and genuine, and it was such a unique program. kisu and i both want to help support the program very much. maybe soon we'll be in a position to do so. meanwhile, we can at least spread the word. the newspaper is supposed to be running a story on monday. we were interviewed pretty extensively by the reporter.

*and here it is!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

items of the day

pooka went to the splash park with granny and some friends. she LOVED it. she was crabby about it at first because she thought that eating dinner with granny meant she would be staying overnight. once granny told her they were having pasta, she was fine.

they like us! they really like us!
cullen and suzanne and the baby were out for a walk earlier and stopped by to say hi.

they are pouring new sidewalks in our neighborhood, and people were told to park on side streets since they couldn't access their driveways. our ancient, crotchety neighbors had their handyman drive ACROSS OUR LAWN to get back in their driveway! this made me so furious; they're persnickety people who complain if we leave any trace of grass clippings on their driveway and even throw twigs back in our yard when they come off our tree. i want kisu to go and give them a piece of his mind. he witnessed the whole thing.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

tea and handshakes

aliens took over my body today and made me talk to my neighbors.

after dinner, i put bug in the stroller and pooka got on her big wheel and we went for a walk around the block. i just wanted a little fresh air and to give kisu some time alone in the house. pooka wanted to race around the block 3 times. 3/4 of the way around the block we ran into barricades where the sidewalk was ripped out. pooka ws thrilled and scared when i had her ride IN THE STREET(!) along the curb to get around the obstruction. shortly after that, we had to time our travel to avoid a sprinkler. then we got stopped by the first neighbor.

her house is 3 doors down from ours, and i had actually met her before. way back when we first moved in and pam was visiting, we went to a garage sale and pam fell in love with this lady's japanese red lace maple. i don't think i've talked to her since. (btw, did anything come of those seeds, pam?) anyway, we spoke for about 5-10 minutes.

we completed our first run and i told pooka that we only had time for one more lap because it was so late. she was determined to fit in two more laps and took off. i was hard put to keep up with her. she had nearly a full block lead on me, and if she hadn't gotten distracted enough to stop, i wouldn't have caught up with her. when i did get close to her, i noticed a little boy playing in his yard across the street. then i noticed his mom on the porch holding a baby just about bug's size. i called pooka back and we CROSSED THE STREET! i couldn't believe i had the courage to make the first move. turns out, this boy we had met last summer when he was taking a walk with his dad and we were in the backyard. his first comment on meeting her was "i like your voice." what 5 year old thinks about voices? pooka was bald at the time, so i wasn't sure the boy remembered her, but when i mentioned it, both parents said they did remember. the mother worked at goilda's club for a time, so pooka particularly stuck in her memory.

pooka and cullen played in the yard for awhile as suzanne and i talked. the baby is 6 weeks older than bug, and cullen is 6 months older than pooka. enough to put him one grade ahead, but that allowed me to quiz them all on their experience with the local elementary school. (so far, so good; kisu and i still haven't decided where pooka will go for kindergarten.) we stayed and talked for almost HALF AN HOUR. pooka secured an invitiation to come and play anytime. apparently there are a couple other kids pooka's age nearby, too. i am eager to find some local friends for us all. maybe we will finally develop some friendships in our neighborhood. better late than never.

Monday, June 18, 2007

biker babes and dudes

granny bought pooka a big wheel on saturday. she is over the moon. she zoomed up and down the sidewalk about a bajillion times. it's a barbie big wheel. *shudder*
she rode the thing for an hour at granny's , then for awhile at home while dinner was cooking, and then again on sunday while kisu and i did yardwork. she was fired up to ride all day again today... but they ripped up the sidewalk.

she was moderately consoled when kisu had her make handprints in the freshly poured concrete outside our gate. he also stuck bug's feet in.

poppa brought his new motorcycle home this weekend. it's his second bike in 2 days. he bought it in florida and was driving it home when it broke down at the tennessee/kentucky border. fortunately, he got in touch with the dealer who called a local dealer who picked poppa up. apparently the bike had a bad drive train. instead of waiting a week while they fixed it (it was under warranty, obviously) poppa got a brand new bag, i mean, bike.

we saw it sunday at cracker barrel when we met up with granny and poppa for father's day dinner. i don't know how long poppa had been planning this bike purchase, but until kisu pointed it out, it had never occurred to him that the colors he picked are also the colors for the tampa bay bucs. doh!

after dinner, we rode to grandpa k's to visit, and granny and poppa followed us. poppa wanted to show off his new wheels. turns out grandpa k and grandma b knew about the motorcycle even before we did! is it just me or is it kind of spooky that my parents and my in-laws socialize without the two people who introduced them?

Sunday, June 17, 2007

farmer pooka

poor pooka has to be woken up for medicine a couple hours after going to sleep. in this state, she can be hilarious or truly bellicose. tonight she was funny. after taking her pills, she told kisu that she left the cow outside.


we do have a garden, thanks to granny's efforts, but i'm the only cow around here.


Friday, June 15, 2007

can you read my thoughts?

bug has been a-cooing ever since she was born. it is one of the sweetest sounds to hear. kisu and i have commented about it several times. lately, it's getting, not creepy, but eerie in a way. last night when i held her in my lap, she started babbling. some of it sounded like real words.

today kisu called me just before lunch to let me listen to bug babble some more. i swear 3 or 4 different bursts sounded like hi mom or hello. if she's a precocious talker like her sister, we are in for a perpetually clamorous house. (pooka had over 100 words in her working vocabulary by the time she was 18 months old.) kisu and i will have to develop telepathy if we ever want to be able to communicate with each other.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

if the walls could listen

last night we gave the girls a bath. pooka thoroughly enjoyed being able to hold her sister while i scrubbed, but bug was less than enthusiastic. the last time we did it she was ok, but tonight not so much. by the end of it, i was not too thrilled, either, as my entire back had locked up and i was barely able to lift bug the short distance into kisu's waiting towel-clad arms. woe for my post-partum aches and pains, which seem to be multiplying by the week.

once bug was removed pooka could get down to the serious business of playing in the tub, although we could still hear the screaming complaints. at one point, pooka asked me if these walls were 'hear-proof'. obviously not.

we need to strictly monitor the items she takes into the tub after the soap incident. the drain plugged up with a wad of disintegrating soap box/hair clipping goo. fortunately, kisu was able to clear it so scrupulously that the drain now has super sucking powers. i made sure pooka evacuated the tub before the water had completely drained, lest she be slurped down like a strand of giant spaghetti.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

check out my crib

finally! after sitting disassembled in the nursery for 2 weeks, the crib is usable.
we *ahem* misplaced the hardware and, despite kisu's attempts to contact the manufacturer, we were unable to get official replacements. so kisu went to home depot and bought the hardware on his own. it works just fine. bug spent her first night in last night and it was a success. unfortunately, the mobile is dead. we forgot to take the batteries out when we put it in storage and they corroded. additionally, it may have gotten stuck with the buttons jammed in an on position and worn itself out. i mounted the mobile anyway so that she would have something to look at while she's there.

i was afraid that she'd gotten so used to sleeping in the swing that she wouldn't transition to the crib. 1-the swing keeps her in a semi-reclined position and 2-it moves and entertains her! she was asleep from nursing last night when i put her in the crib and she didn't wake. she didn't seem unduly upset by her location when i went in for the 2 o'clock feeding, nor for the 6 o'clock. i think she might be alright with it. of course it's only been one night.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

blood and time

there was a blood drive at work today. i was very gratified to be able to donate again. kisu was supposed to be donating while i was pregnant but he never did. i wasn't sure how my body would react what with the loss of blood and the breastfeeding, but the only side effect i had was some wooziness upon standing from a crouched position. that usually happens anyway. i knew i had to make sure i drank lots of water yesterday for the above two reasons. my pee is now colorless.

it is becoming increasingly clear that there is not enough time in the day to get everything done. i arrive home at 6, feed bug, make dinner, eat, clear dishes, feed bug, put pooka to bed, time for chores/tasks (approx 20-50 minutes), feed bug, put bug to bed, go to bed. i can't mess with my bedtime too much without negatively impacting milk production. pooka's bedtime has de facto changed to 9pm for the simple fact that we can't get ready any sooner. i can't wait for a weekend where i can actually relax a little bit or at least prep stuff for the coming week so i don't feel so rushed every single weeknight.

Monday, June 11, 2007

the yearlong baby boom

the baby boom that is happening in my little world is almost over.
i find it interesting to see the birthdates and names as they accumulate. no duplications, so far, although some dates are close. There is a nice mix of names, none of that trendy garbage that's going around and no fruit!

There's :

Mary Katharine in early Jan
Jack Feb 1
Thomas Feb 17
Zachery Mar 22
Brigitte Mar 29
Benjamin April 3
Grant April 6
Alexander in early May
Kaitlyn May 24
Chloe June 9

And there are 3 still to come before the year is out.

Sunday, June 10, 2007


what a beautiful day! it went pretty much along my plan, for once. i wanted to get to the church early to feed bug and get her into her outfit so she wouldn't have to travel in that heavy gown. we didn't get there as early as i would have liked, but it all worked out. there was another little boy being baptised, he was about 12-18 months old, probably. bug was very tolerant of being passed to pastor marsha and didn't squawk when she got wet. pastor marsha had bug up on her shoulder and i was just waiting for bug to either eat the lavalier mike or spit up all over her stole. fortunately, nothing untoward happened and pastor marsha then carried her up and down the center aisle to meet the people. as soon as she got back to me, she started fussing and demanded the bink. i'm glad she went that long without it, for the pictures' sake. it was HOT in there, though, and we were all sweating. when we sat down, i put bug in the car seat and lifted the gown off her as much as i could. she promptly fell asleep.

after the service, we went to coffee hour for a bit and i fed bug again. i wanted aunt p to give at the blood drive next door, but there wasn't enough time. we went off to frank's.

angie did a great job for us: gave us a huge discount, had baptism balloons, served the cake (that she picked up from the bakery!) and even let me use her office to feed bug yet again. we love the people at frank's diner!

~congratulations to cousin thomas who was also baptised today.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

family reunion

we had our own little family reunion today. granny, poppa, gamma, grandpa, cousins d and j, aunt pami. we spent the day cleaning the sticks from the roof and yard after the storm this week, and cooking up a heckuva spread for dinner. we had to get the folding table out! there was a TON of food and everyone was satisfied, even the picky eaters. then we had a cake for gamma's bday and made her cry. jackpot!
pooka and bug got a little out of sorts towards the end of day after too much stimulation. plus pooka was on benadryl. poor buggy hardly slept all day and had a hard time getting settled to sleep tonight. pooka crashed on our bed, and i am ready to drop. i did a lot of work today after staying up until 230 last night talking to my big sister.

Friday, June 8, 2007

shearing time

tonight we all went for haircuts. pooka's hair is getting kind of bushy. we talked with the stylist to see if she thought it would continue to get more 'fro like, or if it would start to hang. she said hang and she made some suggestions on how to best cut it to facilitate that happening. kisu and i also got cuts, but pooka and bug were the main attractions there.
afterwards, we got ice cream. pooka knew immediately what she wanted (superman) but then barely ate any of it or the special cone that came with it. i was surprised because she loves cookies with m&m's baked in.
her appetite has really changed in the last month, which is good i think. she does less snacking during the day, less mindless eating, and eats a little less at meals than she used to. she still looks healthy and is slimming down. thank goodness.

happy birthday gamma!

hope you have a great day and we can't wait to see you tomorrow!

Thursday, June 7, 2007

batting .250

these couches are becoming a pain in the butt. when we first received them, i signed off without inspecting, only to find that both were damaged enough to send back. customer service was fine with that and replacements were ordered.

the replacements were delivered today and this time, the guys waited while i inspected. one is fine, with just a small blemish on the leather on the back. the other has a major problem. the back supporting rail is stove in. this is unacceptable and the delivery guy signed off on the receipt acknowledging the damage.

customer service has agreed to order yet another replacement, but this is getting real old and i would like to be done with this situation. on the other hand, it's kind of like getting new furniture every 2 months.

meanwhile, the old sofa-bed is still taking up space in the living room, awaiting the arrival of some muscle-bound person to help kisu haul it downstairs. hmmm.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

healthy pooka

clinic went well. pooka is finally getting taller! she measured at 43.75" today. yay.
she has been fearless medically ever since bug was born. she now goes by herself to get vitals, and finger pokes, with no hesitation. and she gets her port accessed with no fuss and sometimes no numbing cream! so can somebody tell me why she's afraid to try new food?

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

healthy bug

bug had her 2 month checkup today. 11#, 21 3/4" . that's some good growth! i am so proud of myself since she is exclusively breastfed. i make good food.
she also had her first vaccines today. poor baby. daddy took her home and gave her tylenol and a bottle to make her feel better. according to the doc she is the picture of health. excellent. pooka has a clinic visit tomorrow, so let's hope she's another healthy chick.

Monday, June 4, 2007

old before her time

pooka is such a helpful big sister. sometimes she wants to do too much. one night, she wanted to put bug to bed all by herself. well, that didn't exactly happen. i had put her in the swing for a pre-bedtime nap and was on the phone. when she woke up and starting crabbing. pooka got up and gave her the bink, put a blanket on her, restarted the swing and turned on the nightlight and music. she then returned to the bedroom, (not knowing i could hear her) saying, "they grow up so fast." you ain't just whistling dixie, sweetheart.

Sunday, June 3, 2007


we went to scotty's graduation and party this weekend. it was good to see our friends again. i can't believe the kids are so old already. we took danica and jessica, too, and they had fun hanging out with the other teens.
pooka was dying to get in the pool, even though her suit was too tight. we let her use it one day but then bought her a new one. she spent SO much time swimming. she is down to only using water wings and needs no human support. she swam countless laps around the perimeter. she was so proud of herself for the swimming itself, but also for 'exercising'.
d and j and i got a bump circle going and the younger girls wanted to join in, but didn't quite get the concept. when they did manage to make contact, it was usually a wild hit that had to be chased down. pooka was so insistent on playing, but then wasn't paying attention when the ball came to her. i was pretty harsh with her and felt a little bad, but it boiled down to our usual battle with her: pay attention! she wants to 'play volleyball' but stands there gazing off into the distance instead of watching for her turn. or when she does notice the ball coming to her, she catches it instead of bumping it.
i was surprised that i knew a couple of other graduates in addition to scott and his friends. there were 3 children of my former professors graduating. again i'm amazed at how quickly they've grown.

happy birthday

today is kisu's birthday. he is now on the verge of becoming old. unfortunately, we didn't get to dedicate today to him, since we have to attend graduation. we will celebrate for him in a few weeks.
hard to believe we've been together so long already. and sometimes it feels like forever. we make such a good team, and we make beautiful babies. he always knows how to make me laugh, even though sometimes he makes me angry.. our love and friendship have gotten us through some tough times, and will hopefully stay with us in the better times that are sure to come. i love you, kisu.

Friday, June 1, 2007

smiley girl

i can't believe what a difference i feel between pooka's infancy and bug's. bug smiles so easily; i don't remember pooka being so happy-go-lucky, but then again, i don't remember last month, either.

buggy hardly ever cries. she's quite predictable: she eats, then she'll be content to talk or chew on her fist for a good half hour or so, then she'll want her binky for a while, then she'll want to eat again, then nap. she's good at entertaining herself already, although she sometimes demands to move.

it's amazing how easy it is to make her smile: she loves to feel a gentle breeze on her face, it makes her grin big time. now she is starting to respond to light tickling on her torso. she also will smile if i wipe her mouth. so easy. and what a rush it gives me to see it.

i wonder how much of it has to do with how laid back i am this time around, instead of being frazzled like i was with pooka?

with pooka, she was daddy's girl from the beginning. seems like the only time she wanted to see me was when she was hungry. with bug, she loves her daddy, but she doesn't give him as many smiles or giggles as i get. and boy does she love her poppa! as soon as she sees him, she lights up.