Tuesday, March 22, 2016

The Things They Do

Sunday morning I was doing my hair while Cheetah played in our bedroom.
(Lest you get any fanciful notions, I am not a 2-hours-plus-product-and-equipment kind of hair doing girl. I am a five-minutes-max-check-for-blemishes-ponytail-lip-gloss-and-mascara kind of girl.)
My hands are in the air with the elastic and the brush and I hear a splashing sound.
I turn around and Cheetah has come into the bathroom on silent feet, opened the toilet lid noiselessly (fortunately he does not know the seat lifts up as well), and he is playing in the water.
The toilet water.
I understand his being fascinated with the lid. He likes to flush too and I get that. I expect to have our water bill increase once he can open doors on his own. (We usually keep the bathroom doors closed.)
But when has he ever seen anyone put their hand *in* the toilet?

This is me wondering who he's copying.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Spring Break - Day 1

Hottest spring on record and not much of the promised rain.
But can still party:

This is me hangin' with the boys on Spring Break.

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

And so it begins...

Here was my moment of Zen the other day. Moments like these are very poignant. On the one hand he is taking his first steps on the path to literacy and making some excellent decisions with his agency which makes me very proud. On the other hand he is only 15 months old and he doesn’t really know what he is doing. He is faithfully replicating what he has seen Jane and me do down to the cardboard briefcase in the foreground.  He sees me carrying my ledertasche when I come home from church functions and now he is following suit which makes me rather scared. I mean he is always watching, learning and observing. When I see him following my example, its like looking in a mirror and I have become very sensitive about the type of example that I lead.
At the same time it is very heartwarming seeing Ian following in our footsteps. He has always preferred to eat what he observes his parents are eating instead of generic baby food. Last night Jane made a very tasty and somewhat spicy, Asian, lettuce wrap dish. We were a little worried the chili peppers would be too much for him. Last summer the chicken at Chipotle was too much for him. But after watching us, he was scarfing the filling down with two hands.
 I have also noticed some similarities with his attitude towards sleep. In short, he resists the urge to slumber until it is physically impossible to do so. I actually do the same thing. I have always preferred to sleep as little as possible; I’ve been known to skip sleeping altogether when enthralled in a good book or computer game. Lately I’ve had some late nights were I’ve needed to unwind afterwards and ended up falling asleep while listening to a favorite podcast on the couch. I guess my age is showing.
It is refreshing to see the many things we have in common. I have so much I want to teach Cheetah and in addition to the many things that I enjoy about life, much of it will be things I always wanted to experience but never did or shortcomings of mine that I want to make sure he avoids. I am apprehensive about how this mix of old and new will be received and I am very glad at this early juncture we are speaking the same language. It bodes well for the future.

Explorations and Encounters Part 3

Cheetah is also a fan of the great indoors as well.
Here he is climbing my desk to get at my computer. He has tipped the paper shredder on its side and is now standing on it so he can reach my mouse. He is a very energetic explorer.
However the intrepid explorer's reach sometimes exceeds his grasp. He is becoming increasingly capable; he gets off of the couch easily enough and can dismount our 4 foot high bed in a barely controlled dismount. Yet thankfully our eagerly almost independent 15 month old still needs us to bail him out of trouble sometimes.

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Explorations and Encounters Part 2

Nothing however interests Cheetah more than food. He brakes for anything edible:
As you can see from the above video nothing about the wild outdoors is nearly as interesting to Cheetah as the cherry tomatoes growing on the side of our house. When he eats he is very enthusiastic and very single minded. 
He is also very insistent. Apparently Jane was not moving fast enough for the walking stomach last week and so when her back was turned he reached up on tippy toes to get a bowl of cottage cheese off of the table, remove the totally unnecessary fork, sat down and proceed to gorge most gloriously on the tasty curds. Such beautifully expressive eyes. Here is a being experiencing life to its fullest and wondering why you aren't doing likewise. Bon Appetit!

Monday, February 29, 2016

Explorations and Encounters Part 1

Cheetah is extremely intrigued with all things outdoors. Anytime he can detect an open door he makes a run for freedom. Jane and I were concerned early on that our small property lot would not interest Cheetah very much, but for now he enjoys roaming our small piece of the urban jungle. One big draw is the wildlife, both organic and mechanical.
Cheetah loves the cats. To him they are mobile teddy bears. I must say how surprised I am at how tolerant the cats are of Cheetah. He can be quite grabby but aside from laid back ears and exasperated facial expressions, the cats put up with quite a lot from him. They don't always let him catch them but often they will approach him and let him pet them. Ripples of the Garden of Eden I suppose.
Cheetah also loves moving vehicles. Whenever I take him with me to check the mail his head will constantly swivel to focus on the nearest vehicle on our busy city street. Left to his own devices, he will hang on the front fence and happily watch to world go by. Life is huge source of entertainment for this child.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Sublime Sundays

I have always enjoyed Sundays as a rule. Certainly as a bishop I don't rest much, but the work is different and it relaxes me. Now Cheetah is becoming a larger part of my day; a very cute one as the above picture will attest. Jane snapped this picture of Cheetah walking around in his Sunday clothes before church and it pretty much sums up our Sundays. He is cute as a button and always so happy. Thanks again to cousin Brenda for the baby sized bowties, they are so adorable and rather practical for a toddler who grabs anything he can see.

With Cheetah walking and Jane being so busy in Primary, I take Cheetah for the first two hours of church and aside from how heavy he is (30 lbs.), I enjoy the time we get to spend with each other immensely. Sometimes when I am playing hymns I will hand him to one of my counselors, but for the most part Cheetah is content to sit on my lap and observe his surroundings. Its quite a wonderful feeling to have him with me as we get to spend so little time together during the week.

The secret of course is that as Bishop, I don't stay in one place for long and this compliments Cheetah's temperament nicely. Whenever Cheetah's environment changes, he pauses to observe and assess the situation. He does get antsy after two hours of this but that is in just enough time for Jane to relieve me and give Cheetah a snack during sacrament meeting. Jane has mentioned many times that Cheetah is giving us the most seamless and painless transition to parenthood that anyone could hope and I heartily agree.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Epic Recap

I wonder if any one has failed so spectacularly quick at their New Year's resolution?
There is no explanation other than I am a lazy bum and enjoy playing with blocks and reading books all day.
However, Tarzan has posts scheduled for the next few days so I thought I'd speak before we jump into the current moment to get us all caught up. 
The last time I shared any pictures was before Thanksgiving - mostly because I do a lot of my posting from my iPad which does not post pictures. (Or I can't figure it out if it does.) - and as we learned, the small ones make progress really quick.
When we last saw Cheetah he was crawling and pulling himself up. Particularly when near a thing that makes noise:
Or when items require flinging from the shelves:
He's quite adept at emptying a bookcase in record time.
He was very interested in our Little People Nativity during December (thank you Liezel for the recommendation!) His favorite part was pushing the angel to make it light up and sing:
(It was a really adorable set, with a lot of pieces - none of which we lost, which was amazing - and my only comment/criticism is why would it include a sheep, a cow, two donkeys and no shepherd?)
He was less amused with Santa:
It was fantastic to have Tarzan home more during his Christmas break from school and he and Cheetah spent many adorable hours bonding:
We got a larger Christmas tree than last year and Cheetah thought it was great. It looked a little odd as the season went on. We kept having to put the decorations back on higher up so he couldn't reach the breakables:
Which is always higher than we think. I remember the day I walked in on this:
Cheetah quit nursing in January, and I think I pushed him to continue longer than he may have cared to. This kid came into the world expecting to eat steak and when presented with only milk it just wasn't enough. He eats everything:
We cut his hair for the first time in January. The back was just a little too long:
Of course it's a little crooked now, so I'm not sure which is the greater faux pas:
Somewhere in there Cheetah let go of our hands:
And started walking:
Of course now he's an expert, up and down everything, even stairs, needing no help:
He loves to 'help' me with the dishwasher:
He's a big reader:
And he likes to climb:
The latest stats from his 15-month appointment this week.
*Almost* 33" tall. (32.84")
*Almost* 30lbs. (29 lbs 11ozs)
Gigantic head 20.24"

This is me with only the one excuse for not blogging. I've got to get it together.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

The End Of 2015

Apparently I took the month of December off from blogging...
All I can do is promise to do better next year.
In my defense, December is a crazy busy month anyway, and it takes longer to do things with Cheetah than it does alone.
That's the number one thing I've learned this year; to adjust my estimate for how long things take.
A brief recap:
I actually did well with getting Christmas presents purchased in a timely fashion this year. Granted, most of them were purchased online. I only made two forays into the humanity thronged stores this year and one trip was really brief once I realized normal stores don't sell suits for the tall, skinny person that is my baby brother.
Specialty store for him.
And bless me, I got Rocketgirl's present mailed in time for it to arrive by Christmas. That was a Christmas miracle in and of itself.
We also mailed Christmas cards to friends and family - something we haven't done in years, because why would we, we look the same relatively - and they should have arrived before the holiday too.
As per our usual, the Sunday before Christmas was our special musical sacrament meeting. I try to diversify; not ask the same people to do the same things year after year, and sometimes it brings surprises.
Sometimes it's a dud.
This year it went well for the most part. I do not know what to do about the Young Men and Women. I can't get them to sing loud enough for the first row to hear no matter what I do. The viola piece was good, Tarzan's piano solo was wonderful and the finale was excellent. (I might be a little biased, it was my second brother, singing "The Holy City.")
Christmas itself was lovely. Cheetah wasn't entirely sure what to do with the wrapped presents but he loved each one once it was open. Especially Mommy's muffin tins. He happily played with those for 20 minutes or more.
We went out to my parents' for the afternoon and dinner; it was good to see everyone and have the time removed from obligations and requirements.
Tonight is New Year's Eve and old fogeys we must be because Tarzan and I are sitting at home on the couch watching a movie. We will be drinking some Martinelli's though, so it's a party.

This is me and this is how we're ringing in the year.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Not A Bang But A Whimper

And thus ends my least successful NaBloPoMo ever.
Blame it on the fact we were all asleep by 8:45 last night.
(My high school and college selves are laughing hysterically, and heck, even my 2012 self is snickering. The last time I went to bed that early I had the flu and a fever of 102.)
But none of those versions of me imagined being married to the bishop - who is also teaching early morning Seminary right now while they look for someone to accept the calling, (being bishop isn't challenging enough apparently) which means he's up at 4am - it being fall, thus cold and dark, plus having a 1 year old, and all of us being some version of sick at the same time.
Sooooooo, here we all are.
It's not the life I imagined - and being sick stinks, and having a sick baby stinks worse - but it's our life and together we can make it through.
One day at a time.
Is that a thing?

This is me and it won't always be a slog.

Sunday, November 29, 2015


There is not a substance soft enough when you are required to blow your nose 50 times an hour.

This is me with a souvenir from the vacation.

From Whence You Cometh