Friday, August 22, 2014

// 7 Q U I C K T A K E S V O L.1 0 //


Reentry after vacation is always difficult.  Thankfully ours was gradual.  We got home late last Wednesday. Alex had planned on being off work through the end of the week so we had Thursday and Friday to unpack, do copious amounts of laundry, walk to Dunn Bros. (my favorite local coffee joint), watch a little TV, and just overall rest up a bit.  We even went to a nearby Splash pad with Johnny's godparents Ian and Jacqui and his favorite buddy, Iggy. 

Monday Alex went back to work and Johnny and I went back to our usual at-home routine, which largely revolves around changing so many poopy diapers, and preparing, eating, and cleaning up breakfast and lunch.  It's amazing to me how much time those 2 things take up. It's also amazing to me how used to having Alex around I got while we were on vacation and what an adjustment it was to going back to being home alone with a baby. 


Fortunately for me, this week was my birthday week, so there were a few extra fun things to help ease the shock of going from vacation to everyday life. 

My little brother's birthday is the day before mine.  When my mom was pregnant with him I was so afraid he would be born on my birthday.  As an 8, almost 9 year-old, having a birthday all to one's self is very important. Well, Jake was gracious enough to let me have my day, but we still end up celebrating our birthdays together every year.  And now that I'm grown up, I really like it. 

I turned 28.  There's nothing significant about that number, except that the older I get the harder it is for me to remember my age. I've never felt more like a grown-up than I have in this first year of motherhood, but don't really feel like I'm getting older. I thought I was turning 26, that I still had a lot of my twenties left. I see pictures of celebrities that are 20 or 21 and I think "They must be the same age as me." All my life I wanted to be older, but now I have finally reached that phase where I look back on youth with fondness.

Anyway, it was a good birthday. Mani/pedis with my sister, take out from our favorite Thai place with Alex, girls nights at Marvel, and my whole family spoiled me rotten with a beautiful Lily Jade diaper bag, which is, to sum it up in a single word, heaven.


I love August, except for the fact that this is the time of year that my garden and all my flowers start to look really ugly.  Everything's getting overgrown, the grass is getting brown and crunchy, and I can only keep weeds at bay for so long. This is the point of summer where I just kind of give up. 

Thankfully the garden still produces despite my negligence. Tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, Swiss chard, beets. But mostly tomatoes. One of the reasons I love August so much is that we eat tomatoes, all the time. Caprese, bruschetta, BLTs, salsa, spaghetti. This golden tomato sauce is one of my all time favorites, we've had it twice since we've been home from vacation.  I can't recommend it enough. 


This gigantic bunch of gladiolas was $4 at Whole Foods. What a steal! Go get some!


Johnny had a kidney ultrasound this morning.  For those who are just tuning in, Johnny was born with a series of birth defects, one of which is what's known as a horseshoe kidney.  This is a condition where the two kidneys are joined together, making a horseshoe type of shape.  It's more of an oddity than a health threat. Many people live their entire lives with a horseshoe kidney and don't find out they had one until they're in the 70's. A horseshoe kidney can be more prone to blockage and re-flux however, and so the pediatric urologist has been monitoring Johnny's. This was his third kidney ultrasound and everything still looks great! So that's good news! Just annual ultrasounds from here on out.

Sometimes I think back on those first few days after Johnny's birth when defect after defect was being discovered; imperforate anus, horseshoe kidney, spinal irregularities, hearing loss. And for each one we were presented with a sea of information that made no sense, and dealing with it all seemed impossible. But here we are one year out, most of those problems have been dealt with, and except for the annual follow up, they're just a memory. 

Speaking of Johnny, he's doing so many new things.  No, he's not walking yet.  Well, he takes a few reluctant steps when we force him to, but other than that no walking. But he has started stacking blocks, and playing with his stacking rings, he's even stacking his cubes of watermelon while he's eating lunch. He's started mimicking us a lot more too, clapping, combing his hair, he's even been copying dance moves! It's so amazing to see this interaction, as well as fine motor skills, develop. And I'm quickly realizing that when we reach milestones like the first day of school and his first piano recital I'm going to be a mess. 

There's nothing like these summer nights, even if it is humid and disgusting right now in the great state of Minnesota.  The air smells so rich and earthy. The chirp and buzz of crickets and cicadas is the never ending sound track to our sleeping. Our neighbors are out on their porch and I can hear them singing and playing on guitars. Actually, whoever is singing sounds an awful lot like the lead singer from Pearl Jam. This is part of summer where I realize it won't be here much longer, and so I soak up every part of it. 

Happy weekend everyone!

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