Monday, August 31, 2009

14 Quick Tidbits

Yesterday after our church service, Jeff's mom treated us to a delicious lunch at a Japanese restaurant, the kind where you sit around a big flat cooking surface and the chef comes out and cooks your meal while you watch. Besides simply doing an excellent job of cooking it, the chef also makes the process very entertaining, with sound effects, twirling knives, fire, jokes, etc. I found my own enjoyment in watching the chef, but even more so in watching the faces of Josiah and David--particularly David, who was too young to remember the last time we went there but was old enough now to eat it up--figuratively and literally. All the movement and sound appealed to his highly active senses, and he was enthralled. I loved watching the frequent huge grins on his face throughout the meal as the chef did something silly to draw David in; and I wasn't a bit surprised when, right before we left, David stepped behind the cooking surface and pretended to be the chef, complete with quickly-moving arms and various sound effects. :)


Speaking of food, we had our neighbors, the Shanks, over for dinner on Saturday evening. Jeff's mom cooked almost all of the meal, a Mexican feast. Wilma contributed an apple salad like the one she had made the last time Jeff's mom was here (which garnered heaps of compliments the first time we had it and this time as well). My mom brought iced tea and homemade lemonade, and my only contribution was dessert: turtles and chocolate-covered strawberries. The food was all tasty and the fellowship was sweet, but what I'll probably remember the most is how their two month-old Jason and our one month-old Shav look so similar...and how their behavior was similar, too, with both of them having squally periods during the course of the evening. :)


Every time I get a headache (which happens much more often these days than it did when I was pregnant), I think that I should get a haircut. I know that realistically, it's not the weight of my hair that's making my head hurt...but for some reason, I still start to feel like if only my hair was shorter, I wouldn't get headaches. On second thought, if only I were pregnant, I wouldn't get headaches (since, for some reason, I rarely get them while pregnant--just one of the blessings of pregnancy for me!). But nah, I know I'm not ready for that particular method of headache prevention. :)


One day last week, I opened the front door to see this fascinating creature hanging above it. I did not immediately know that it was a luna moth; but after some research, I discovered the name and a little bit about it--for example, this adult form only lives about a week, has no mouth and doesn't eat at all during that time, but only lives to reproduce. If this moth asked the timeless question, "What is the meaning of life?", the answer would boil down to one thing: make babies!


The floor of Shav's room squeaks in several spots. One is by the door, but I can easily step around that spot and avoid the squeak; and by now, I'm so used to it that I hardly even think about it. But there's another spot--a large one--that is right in front of the changing table, exactly where I need to stand to change Shav. There's no way around that one, so in the still of the night as I'm changing Shav's diaper (and occasionally, like last night, his sleeper that's been spit up on), the music I hear is the squeak of the floor. The placement of that spot is unfortunate--it's mildly annoying to listen to the squeak--but the small size of the room prevents me from moving the changing table to another location so as to avoid the squeak. In previous years, when that room wasn't being used at various times as a nursery for my brother David and I when we were babies or as a bedroom for me when I was older and got "kicked out" of the bedroom I shared with my sister :), my mother used it as a sewing room. The ironing board stood where our changing table now stands; and sometimes as I hear the squeak, I imagine my mother standing there, ironing pieces of material after having sewn them together to make beautiful items of clothing. At least a few times during my childhood, she worked late into the night to make a special dress for me for some significant event. I'd go to bed, knowing that the dress was still in pieces; and when I awoke, the finished product would be hanging from the curtain rod in my room, where I could see it as soon as I opened my eyes. I wonder if, as my mother sewed in that little room while the rest of the family slept, she heard the same squeaks of the floor as I now do.


When I started writing the above paragraph, I almost typed, "the floor of Tobin's room." Many times during the past six weeks, I've almost written "Tobin" when I really meant "Shav"; and I'm sure the day will come when I will make that mistake and it will slip through my proof-reading!


When I change a diaper, whether it be Tobin's or Shav's, I lay the child down with his head to the right. Both Jeff and my mother (and, I suspect, most other diaper-changers) place the child with the head to the left. Yet another way that my left-handedness makes me different. It looks so backward to me when I see the way my husband or mother does it! :)


The crepe myrtle by our patio is currently loaded with blooms. What beauty!


Here I am, six weeks into breastfeeding Shav; and I'm very happy to report that, for the most part, the pain has gone away. There is still a little, brief pain when he latches on, but it's nothing--NOTHING!--like the toe-curling pain I had during the early weeks of nursing him. I suspected that after a few months, the pain would diminish quite a bit; but six weeks seems a little ahead of schedule...and for that, I am grateful! Another tidbit about nursing: sometimes at let-down, I get such a tingly, happy feeling that it literally makes me break out in a smile and sometimes even a laugh. Isn't that strange? Yet I've heard that the same thing happens to other women. Such a change from the tears of pain that I shed early on in this experience of breastfeeding Shav!


My habit during nighttime feedings has been to spend part of the time (specifically the time I'm nursing Shav on the right side) reading a book, and the rest of the time (when he's on the left side and I have my right arm free to reach the little table beside my chair) using my laptop to read email and catch up on blogs and do other computer stuff. While Shav is still in my arms, I'll typically read someone's blog; then after I lay him down in his cradle, I'll sit back down in my glider rocker and take a few minutes to leave a comment or two (since I'm not a very skillful one-handed typer and can't do well with leaving comments while Shav is nursing). Sometimes the following morning, I'll think back on what I wrote in the middle of the night on someone's blog and think, "Oh dear, that probably didn't make a bit of sense." Sometimes my way of expressing myself in the fogginess of nighttime thinking just isn't very clear at all! :)


Yesterday evening, I carried Tobin outside and set him on the grass, then asked Josiah to keep an eye on him while I went inside to get Shav and bring him out. I smiled, then grabbed the camera, when I peeked out the window and saw Josiah and Tobin playing together. Josiah is such a conscientious, caring big brother!


One day recently, I took advantage of Jeff's mom being here to fulfill one of my long-held desires. I took a nap outdoors in our swing (the swing that can be seen in the pictures above)! I had always thought that it would be so delightful to have a nap in it, but it had never worked out because if I'm the only adult around, even if I do take a nap, I do it indoors where I can hear the boys and be accessible to them. But on this particular day, Jeff's mom urged me to go outside for my nap because she would be on call for the boys. I gladly took her up on that offer and made my way to the swing where I quickly fell asleep. Just as I had imagined, it was a joyous thing to sleep out there! Sometimes the things we think will be so nice don't turn out half as good as we had hoped; but in this case, it really was that good--the swing was comfortable, the bugs didn't bother me, the sun was the right amount of warm, and the breeze was the right amount of cool. Heavenly! :)


When Shav smiles--when it's a real smile--his eyes smile, too. Sometimes his mouth will curve upward as he experiments with his muscles and tries out different facial expressions; but if it's a genuine smile, his eyes get involved, too, with the skin around them crinkling up in a joyful expression. One of these days I'll capture it in a photo!


One of the hazards of having my laptop open by my side as I nurse Shav is that occasionally, when my milk lets down, it comes out so fast that it makes him sputter and gasp; and as he backs his head away, a stream of milk shoots out, sometimes landing right on the keyboard of the laptop before I can shove his burp cloth over me to absorb the milk (or at least, change the direction it's shooting out). If the laptop starts to feel a little sticky one of these days, breastmilk is surely the culprit! :)


Valerie said...

This list just made me smile. :)

Misty said...

I frequently get headaches as well but never in my 2nd and 3rd trimester lof pregnancy!

Cherishing Young Biblical Womanhood said...

I'm amazed at all the women that can multi-task and nurse. I'm astonished, four little nurslings later and I can only do one thing at a time. I guess your secret is occasionally spilt milk. :-)

New Mom said...

A few random thoughts:
I really enjoyed reading that! The little tidbits about breastfeeding made me laugh. You're right about the swing, sometimes things don't turn out as heavenly as we imagined-- I remember thinking sleeping in an exposed casita in the tropics of Puerto Rico would be exciting.... what a startling disappointment when I awoke to a lizard hovering over my head! BTW, I thought your post was very well articulated :)

Morning said...

Such a list of precious thoughts -- first, before I forget to comment, I LOVE your new header. Beautiful! Reading about the room in your house made my heart feel full -- we've never stayed in one place for long, but so many of my friends still live in the town where I grew up. I sometimes wonder how that feels -- your memories are so special. And the crepe myrtle is exquisite. Must go to bed -- glad your world is looking cheerful!

Margie said...

A few thoughts: David is a ham! Wow, you made dessert? You're left-handed? No wonder you're so creative. One of my favorite childhood memories is of napping in a hammock - so I get how perfectly wonderful your nap on the swing was.

I liked the list.

michelle said...

davene, i am also left handed, but when i change ari's diaper i also lay her head to the left. so i'm not so sure it really has to do so much w/ what hand you use...i think is has more to do w/ the way your changing table is set up! in our old apt. we had stuff on top of the changing table at one end that was against the just happened to be on the right side, so that is initially why i always put her head at the other end. :) now i just do it out of habit, i suppose!

Anonymous said...

I am on vacation here at Nags Head, but I'm taking a moment to read up on your blog. I'm enjoying it! I too am left-handed, but I always lay my babies down with their heads to the left. I do the wiping and greasing with my right hand, for some reason. But, you have to do what works for you.