Monday, May 28, 2012

A Final Post of the Long Weekend

pushing up into "downward dog"

all the way up... if only I could figure out how to lift my arms
(I can lift one, momentarily, but not both)

We finished off the long weekend with three more adventures.

First, another run in Prospect Park to the Vanderbilt Playground. Calliope slept until past 7, again, hallelujah! Usually I wake up right before she does, or else to her just starting to stir. Today I woke up with a start, from a deep sleep, to the sound of full on crying. I was totally disoriented and thought I had forgotten to set the alarm and was going to be late to work.

Oh, the joys of a three day weekend! No work!

We had a quick nurse in bed... still not something I really enjoy, much to my chagrin... and then we both went to the bathroom. Baby poop in the potty looks pretty gross, but it's sure a lot easier to clean up than off a baby bottom!

We've been having a fair amount of success with the pottying, though if Calliope is trying to tell me when she needs to go, I'm missing her signals, apart from about a week when she would screech in the high chair when she needed to pee, which was amazing! We rely on timing, and diapers. But after sleep and after meals, she generally sits on her Baby Bjorn Little Potty, and often uses it. At the very least, she is familiar with the concept of using the potty, which will probably make potty training easier, and at best, it may make it possible to potty train at a younger age. It would be awesome to have her out of diapers at a young age, but I also don't want to make this into an obsession. I'm very glad, however it turns out, that she mostly poops on the potty for now because it means she doesn't have poop on her skin.

Anyway, we didn't get out as quickly as a result, and Calliope was falling asleep in the stroller on our way back from the playground. Oops. I try very hard to always have the morning nap in the crib. I carried her the last block home to keep her awake.

The run was a lot better than the last two. I'm really getting the hang of running with the stroller, and my stride definitely lengthened out, especially on the way home, which just feels so much better. And afterwards, I was just bursting with energy and ready for another adventure. Not that I got anything productive done during Calliope's nap besides showering, eating, and pumping.

Memorial Day swinging, midway through our run

After the nap and Skyping with Grammy -- Calliope definitely recognized her this time, since our last visit was only two weeks ago, and was much more responsive as a result. I put the computer on the floor so Calliope could play in front of it. She demonstrated her new "downward dog" position, and loved having Grammy clap enthusiastically every time Calliope removed a piece from her jigsaw puzzle.

Then we went to the nearby Ave F playground with our friend Emily and her four year old daughter, Annabelle. Calliope thinks that Annabelle walks on water. Yeah, like Jesus. Everything that Annabelle does makes Calliope laugh. And Annabelle loves being idolized. It's a win:win relationship.

We were delighted to see that the sprinklers were turned on at the playground, so Annabelle and a couple of neighborhood kids had a blast filling up cups of water at the sprinklers and then pouring them on Calliope and my feet. And Calliope was tickled to be part of the fun.

She had a quick lunch on the playground and then was once again falling asleep on the way home, once again ahead of her naptime schedule.

After another short nap, she played on the floor in the living room until it was time to go to a trial music class with Amy and Seth (her husband) and Eleanor. They were the only two there, and it felt a little strange at first, but the class was great and Calliope loved it. The big finale was billowing a parachute over them, which they both loved.

Calliope was tired enough that her joy isn't as apparent as Eleanor's

She got fussy and tired towards the end, though, which is very unlike her. And completely lost it on the bus ride home. She just wanted to go nurse and go to sleep... at 5:45.... on the bus.

I generally try to avoid breastfeeding on public transportation but she was completely hysterical so I finally gave in, after wiping up her snotty nose on her shirt. Between baring the breast and wiping the nose, I'm sure I made a positive impression all around. But it seemed like it was all Hispanic women, plus me and Amy, giving me and Calliope sympathetic smiles, so whatever.

She was hysterical again, getting into the stroller, and when we arrived home. She skipped dinner and after a long nursing, passed out in my arms, poor thing.

I guess I planned one too many fun adventures this weekend? I didn't realize she would get so tired, given that she was napping and getting to bed on time (except for two nights ago, and that was only one hour late, at 7:30.)

I'm going to ask the nanny to try to give her three naps tomorrow, and I think we need to aim for 6 pm bedtimes for a few nights. This is no easy feat -- it means giving her dinner pretty much as soon as I get home, because things always take longer with Amy and Eleanor there.

Still, I hated seeing her so upset tonight. She's so rarely like that. And I guess I need to tone down the activity level just a bit.

Live and learn.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Perfect Holiday Weekend

We had a perfect day at the beach today.

Calliope slept past 7, struggled a bit to fall asleep for her morning nap, but was up by 11. We met our friend Katie and her son Eli, 11 months, and headed to the farmer's market and toy store for provisions (quiche, nubby ball). Then we hopped on the subway and a mere 15 minutes later, we were at the beach!

I love New York City for this! Where else can you take the subway to the beach???

Coney Island is a true Americana Experience. I love how democratic it is. All you need is the cost of a Metrocard fare to get there. It has every ethnicity and nationality. There was a man in his tighty-whities, doing some limbering up at water's edge, that I probably could've lived without... but oh well, all that "local color" just adds to the experience!

We stopped at Nathan's, maker of America's first hot dog, to get snacks, then headed to the sand.

Pushing the strollers over the sand was a good workout -- I'm definitely glad I brought the jogging stroller.

Sand got in absolutely everything. The beach is definitely a different experience with babies because that! Calliope dropped everything -- strawberry, sippy cup, spoon -- onto the blanket which of course was sandy. Oh well. She didn't seem to mind drinking out of a slightly sandy cup.

Classic babies-and-beach photo: Calliope, wearing a sandy, strawberry
stained onesie, is chewing on Eli's shoe. Eli, face covered in squash
puree, has his eyes closed. At least Katie looks great!

I wasn't sure what she would think of the water, because it was pretty cold, but she loved it! Even when we waded in pretty far (I didn't think to bring a bathing suit but figured my skirt would dry eventually) and I dipped most of her body in. She was hooting and kicking... until a wave come along and slapped some water in her face. Ooops.

Then we played again in the shade of the umbrella (I feel extremely organized to have bought a beach umbrella last summer).

Coming home, we were all pleasantly tired, and the babies slept on the subway. Perfect day!

Subway nap. All I could see was this one inert little foot.

And yesterday, Calliope and I got out much earlier for another successful run! This time we were at the park by 8:30. We nabbed a swing and she enjoyed that while I enjoyed her laughter and the sight of her sweet, bare, chubby legs.

Then "we" "ran" back home. I quickly stashed her in the crib before she caught sight of the nanny and our friend, four year old Annabelle. My friend Emily and I left the girls with the nanny and went for another trip to the banya (bathhouse), followed by a quick lunch at a Thai restaurant.

And dinner was at a friend's house... and he even gave me a ride home afterwards!

So it's been a perfect weekend... and I still have Monday (Memorial Day) left to enjoy!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Nine Month Photos

Swimming lessons!

Having fun at clay class

Pawing my friend Akadi

Nine months (yeah Brooklyn!)

Kisses are so funny!

Feeling the farmer vibe. Mommy gave these overalls to my aunt
when she was pregnant with my now 13 year old cousin!
(I can't pull up to stand on my own yet, but I can hold on very well and enthusiastically!)

After only four hours of preparation, I'm ready for our first springtime
 run together!

Do these sunglasses make my teeth look big?

Surveying the playground scene and watching some big kids dig under a tree
while standing is pretty much the height of fun

Channeling Laura Ashley in my hand me down Ralph Lauren dress (the
nanny dressed me... mommy doesn't like yellow. Or Peter Pan collars.)

Nanny dressed me again! 

Friday, May 25, 2012

Feeding Calliope

I e-mailed a friend today and said, "that's it. I'm not struggling to feed Calliope anymore."

The epic 45 minute episodes of waiting to catch her attention with the spoon as she turns her rapt attention from the straps of her high chair to her fingers to the tray to the seat cover...

They are wearing me out. They cut our bath time very short indeed, especially as I am bound and determined to get her to bed every earlier, in an effort to cut out the early morning wakings (counter intuitively enough, this is what baby sleep guru Weiss.bluth recommends).

And they are annoying. I don't enjoy the time with her. And time is too precious for that.

So tonight I didn't mix something into her (plain, unsweetened, homemade, raw) yogurt. No baby food vegetables, no food-milled wild salmon, no delicious steamed acorn squash mashed with butter and salt stirred in. And my girl quickly, readily gobbled up close to four ounces of yogurt! Quickly, efficiently, without playing.

So. I guess I've just been feeding her a lot of things she didn't like.

Does it make a difference in the long run, if I semi-force her to try and hopefully eat lots of things?

I don't know. But I'm not sure it's a battle worth winning.

She also doesn't like to touch food, or at least, she won't ever touch food and then bring her fingers to her mouth. So tonight, in a bit of self diagnosed brilliance, I also tried using a mesh feeder, a device I recently described as "useless" on a parenting listserve. I cut a strawberry in half and popped it in, and lo and behold, girlfriend pretty much devoured that strawberry.

My apologies to the makers of mesh feeders. I was wrong. They are awesome. At least for my one weird kid.

I'm half sure that strawberries aren't supposed to be given yet... it's a good thing I don't read those books and websites that prescribe the precise order and timing of what to introduce what.

My nanny-share friend, Amy, is a brilliant baby food chef. She makes delicious foods like quiche and lasagna and then, get this, just chucks a piece of the adult dish into the blender and voila, instant, delicious baby food! Calliope is a lucky but ungrateful recipient of this ingenuity. She will take at least a few slow bites, usually, before outright refusing it.

So anyway, she took tons of yogurt tonight... and then wasn't very interested in nursing. Presumably because she was stuffed full of yogurt.

But I feel kind of sad about the breastfeeding.

I pumped three ounces afterwards, and evening is not my best time for pumping, so that means she really didn't get much.

Calliope likes to nurse and all, but perhaps because we've pretty much always done it on a schedule, it's more a food than a comfort. I mean, a comfort food to be sure, but still pretty utilitarian. Which makes me think it might not be that hard to wean her.

But then I think, wait a second, I'm not even supposed to wean her yet. I mean, not without a reason, anyway. But I just wonder if it will be harder to give up later?

On the other hand, I'm not ready to give up breastfeeding.


Here's where you tell me, it's not about your needs, Mommy.

Ah yes, I forgot.

Anyway, I wondered idly tonight if I should've nursed her before solids, so she would get more milk, but then remembered that whole (unfortunate) growing up process involves transitioning to more solids, less milk.

So no, she's supposed to fill up on solids, and not want a lot of milk. Duh.

I'm glad, at least, that we nurse in the morning before solids.

It will be very strange if my very practical, relatively independent child just decides to give up nursing at some point. The nanny just told me that she only has one shot with the bottle per feeding -- if she goes to get more milk because Calliope still seems hungry, Calliope will refuse to open her mouth again. So she always "has" to put extra milk in the bottle, just in case.

So I'm thinking it won't be hard to stop the bottle.

Actually, I expect that once I am home for the summer with her, she will refuse to take a bottle, since she will rarely, if ever, need to take one during those two months. She already refuses to take one from me, which she was willing to do for quite a long time.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Audible Clapping and More!

Yes, Calliope actually makes a real clapping noise when she claps now! She's been clapping for quite a while, but it was more of a pantomime of bringing her hands together than truly doing so. But now her hands make an ever-so-satisfying slapping sound as they make contact. She is inordinately pleased by this.

Yesterday, she suddenly but intentionally tumbled forward from sitting to her belly. The nanny said she's been attempting this for several days, but this was the first time she achieved her goal.

Girlfriend is still only moving backwards and sideways. She brings her right foot into the action more and more, so that she's wobbling back and forth, weight bearing from the left knee to the right foot, and has even gotten her weight on both feet, with her hands also on the floor -- a sort of modified plank position -- but still no crawling nor pulling up to stand on her own.

Oh well, I'm sure life will only get more difficult when she can move intentionally forward. But it seems like more than a month now with backwards crawling and her little buddies can do all sorts of cool things now, like exploring the playground equipment, that she cannot. But she still loves the swings, and loves to stand and hold onto things and bob up and down, over and over, and watch the action.

Last Saturday, after about four hours of delays, we determinedly left the apartment for our first run together since last Thanksgiving, and my first run whatsoever in months. I've been using the elliptical but it's not the same.

"Running" with the Bob running stroller, as amazing as it is, is just not the same as running unencumbered. But we made a lengthy stop at a new-to-us playground in the middle, which we both enjoyed, and which included her first ice cream because I didn't think to bring lunch. On the way back, I learned to keep the stroller further from my body and to only push with one hand while swinging the other arm in a more traditional running style. This made "running" much more comfortable. I'm hoping Saturday morning runs with a stop at the playground will be our new tradition, but hopefully accomplished early in the morning, before the first nap and before the swings are in the full sun.

This weekend we I have plans to go to the banya (Russian bathhouse) with a friend while the nanny watches both our kids -- it's been quite a while since I had childcare for anything but work! -- and plans with another friend to go to the beach at Coney Island with our babies. Calliope has a brand new cold at the moment and is definitely under the weather but I'm hopeful that she will feel much better by then.

Progress continues with the apartment purchase. Friday night I went to meet with the attorney and sign the contract. I decided to bring Calliope with me in the Beco carrier, even though it was past her bedtime, because frankly, I wanted her company. Partly for reassurance (just from that snuggly feeling) and partly because this is a huge event in both our lives. She was incredibly patient and stayed in the carrier the entire time and never fussed or squirmed to get out. I was glad to have her there.

The seller is supposed to sign the contract tomorrow -- I'm not sure why so long after I did -- and money is changing hands, not without some excitement as to how I was going to lay my hands on the first 10 percent. But it all is sorted out now and I'm cautiously optimistic it will work out.

A recent SMC conversation recommending sand and water tables for toddlers made me ridiculously excited because I realized that with my terrace, I could have this very thing for my own child, even while living in the city. No moving to the suburbs required! Amazing.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Yep, You Guessed It, A "First Mother's Day" Post

It was wonderful to celebrate the day with my girl.

I never thought much about the holiday before, but it was lovely.

My cousin, Bonnie, emailed me to say, "you have many years of macaroni necklaces and sand paintings to look forward to."

I say, "bring it!" I can't wait to receive those crooked treasures.

For this year, lacking craft gifts, I ordered photo collage mugs for myself, my mom, and our nanny... but I wasn't organized enough to have them here in time. Oh well. I'm excited that I got myself something that I will treasure, regardless of when it arrives.

Four patients, now all graduated, texted me a happy mother's day. I've always appreciated that they did that even before I was a mother. So I'm here to say that it's fine and wonderful to celebrate the motherly women in your life, even if they aren't mothers. Hence the mug for the nanny.

My mom visited for the weekend, which was wonderful. I feel so much closer to her since Calliope was born.

Calliope is our shared passion. It's so great to have someone else be interested in her every tiny development. My mom isn't always a skilled conversationalist, but we can talk for a long time, indeed, about our precious girl.

We went out for lunch and I offered Calliope a pickle and my mom offered her a french fry. The pickle won.

Sunday morning, we went to swim class.

My little girl is a fish! I am ridiculously proud because I've always loved the water (I used to swim "competitively" and I was a lifeguard and swimming instructor as well). Last weekend, Calliope attempted to imitate me and blow bubbles in the water... she tried once and got scared. This week, she tried over and over again. No bubbles yet, but she tried, and came up sputtering, and eager to try again. She stood on the edge of the pool and "fell" into the pool, over and over again, without, actually, seeming to care all that much. She was fascinated by the rubber ducky she was gripping, and didn't seem to care what Mommy was doing to the rest of her body.

The swimming instructor came around twice to do a one-two-three-wheeeee pass from me to her (with her body in the water but her head above). The first time she did it, Calliope beamed. The second time around, we agreed Calliope was up for the challenge... and after the "three" she whooshed Calliope towards me, underwater! And Calliope was fine. She sputtered a bit, but was smiling.

After that, I asked what we could work on during our free time at the end of swimming. She said floating on her back, with me only holding Calliope's head. I immediately tried it.

Calliope didn't seem to notice that she was "floating" on her back with me holding the sides of her head -- she was too fixated on the damn rubber ducky! But she never did complain about it.

She also did lots of kicking -- more of a whole body, dolphin kick than the flutter kick associated with crawl and backstroke -- and allowed me to windmill her arms through the water.

And then we came home and she took a two and a half hour nap! I even got to take a little snooze. Heavenly and desperately needed, considered our recent pattern of 5:30 am wake-ups.

The other thing that happened this weekend... My mom and I went to see some apartments on Saturday afternoon, accompanied by my faithful "roommate." My mom wanted to make a bid on the one I mentioned in my last post... but I realized that I felt like it was really just too small. We saw another that I had seen before, that was great except for a small kitchen and a less-than-perfect address, but not too bad.

And then we went to the one in my friend Emily's building. Emily had asked the owner, on my behalf, if we could see it on Saturday because my mom had to leave before the Sunday open house.


I walked in and knew immediately that this was the one.

I'm scared to say too much because we all know these things are very, very delicate.

But I made an offer that evening and things went back and forth a couple of times and the offer was accepted!

It could still fall apart so I'm not going to say anymore, except to say... that this was one very memorable Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Happiness Is...

Happiness is a bucket swing... with trains rumbling noisily by in the background

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

All's Well

All is well with Calliope and me.

She continues to teeter on the edge of crawling. Three days ago, she surprised herself by moving from all fours to sitting... leading to an outburst of frightened tears. She's still nervous about this trick, and wouldn't perform this afternoon.

She's stronger and stronger on all fours, and is moving backwards ever more quickly, but still... no forward motion.

I decided that Calliope is waiting for my mom to arrive for her visit this weekend. She better not prove me wrong.

Swim class was a hit this week! Catherine generously gave us a ride, which was world's better than schlepping baby plus stroller plus diaper bag plus swim bag plus cooler bag on the bus... which was 20 minutes late. I also only brought the swim bag with me. I mean, with a nursing baby, you're never going to truly be out of food, right?

We had a different swim teacher this time and it was clear that last week's singing and blowing bubbles was all well and good for little babies, but now... it was time to get serious. We did prone kicking, kicking on the back, arm strokes, bubble blowing, popping up and down out of the water, flying through the water from instructor to Mommy... It was a lot. Calliope seemed to love it until the last few minutes, when I think she was just plain cold -- there was a problem with the pool heater -- and maybe a little worn out. But she actually voluntarily put her face in the water and tried to blow bubbles when she saw me doing it. That's my adventurous girl! Of course, the very wetness of the water when she put her face in scared her, but we will keep practicing.

Her latest development is to wake up earlier and earlier with each passing day. I've tried nursing her for just two minutes, or alternatively, giving her a full feeding, but either way, putting her back in the crib.

No dice.

She doesn't go back to sleep.

Because she's not waking up out of hunger.

This morning I woke up, at 5:35 am, god help me, to the sound of excited panting.

Girlie was rocking back and forth on her knees in her crib with a look of focus and pleasure.

I can't really complain about this.

She didn't cry at all until I pulled myself out of bed and went to the bathroom. You know, without her.

Then she wailed.

Because she was following the rules, staying in her crib and not crying.

But I was not.

Leaving her behind to go on fun adventures (and yes, the bathroom counts as fun -- I mean, there's toilet paper in there) is unacceptable.

I came back out and scooped her up and nursed her for two minutes, deposited her back in the crib, and lay back down in my bed.

She trilled and babbled for twenty minutes while I pretended to sleep.

The thing is, I was planning to get up at 5:45 anyway... but without company. So that I could exercise and shower before devoting myself to her.

Oh well.

So we went off to the living room to nurse and potty and change diapers and my girl was dressed and ready to face the world by 6:15 am.

Me, not so much.

As a result, she took two morning naps. And zero afternoon naps. She was awake from noon until 6:40 pm.

Surely this isn't good for her?

According to Weiss.bluth, early wakings mean that she needs an earlier bedtime, counterintuitively enough. But she seems so cheerful and happy and active. It's hard to convince myself to exert the effort to get her to bed earlier than her 6:30 bedtime. Because if she's tired, she does an amazing job of hiding it.

I think after my mom leaves on Sunday, I will move back to the living room for a little sleep-training-in-reverse, to teach her to sleep later in the mornings.

I'd be happy to keep her up later in the evenings, but she's so tired by 6:30. She drifts off to sleep while we are nursing every night, though she always wakes up when I put her in the crib. And then gets a huge goofy grins, drums her legs against the mattress, and thrashes enthusiastically until I leave the room. And then passes out again within five minutes.

I think we really need our own bedrooms. Sad as I will be to be further away from her. After my last post, I actually stole her from her crib and brought her into bed at night. Thirty minutes later, she started to toss and turn and cry, and I reluctantly returned her to the crib. Admitting to myself that I wasn't enjoying having her in my bed all that much, anyway.

Neither of us cuddle in our sleep. Okay, that's not true. She was fast asleep, but the one time in recent months that I tried to nap with her, she was good to press up against my side. I am not a sleep cuddler. Never have been. Even when we slept together when she was a newborn, we were on opposite sides of the bed. I don't trust myself to remember she's there, for one thing. At least once I actually swatted my newborn across the face. (She slept through it, to my amazement.)

I saw five different apartments last weekend, and hope to see some more this weekend. I'm thinking about one, in particular, that I saw. I wish the living room was a little bigger (wider, really), but in other respects, it's pretty good. The price is good. It's a little further from our nanny-share-people and the hot spot of our little neighborhood...but it's not terrible; it's still in walking distance. It has nice light, the second bedroom isn't ridiculously tiny, it has a brand new open kitchen and closets galore, it's on a nice side street... And I'm realizing that I could put my desk and my elliptical in my bedroom since Calliope won't be sleeping there... and that would open up the living room substantially. There's even a jungle gym thing in the little courtyard! For days when I want her to just burn off some steam, it sure would be nice to have an option that close.

I'm hoping to get a second look this weekend, with both my mom and my broker.

One thing about me: I don't "do" ambiguity very well. Once I've made a decision, I tend to move quickly.

I hope I don't screw up this Very Big Decision.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Missing Her

Sleep is going well.

I'm back in my room. It's good to be back.

And after sharing my dilemma with my neighborhood moms' group (all moms of babies born summer 2011), and hearing that it's common amongst her peers to wake up at 5:30 am, and reading this in Weisbluth as well... and also seeing how extremely tired she gets from hanging out in her crib until 7 am (not crying, mind you, but not sleeping much), I decided to feed her. For two minutes. And she goes back to sleep for another hour or so.

I can live with a 5:30 am feeding, especially during the week when I often get up at 5:45 to exercise anyway.

I don't know why, but tonight I am missing her. She's been coughing in her sleep and I'm debating if that's a good enough reason to justify taking her out of her crib and bringing her to bed with me.

I love the idea of co-sleeping, if we could do it without nursing, though I feel like there's some reason it must be a bad idea. And some reason I haven't done it up until now. But I can't remember what it is.

She's getting ever closer to crawling. Nastya has to put a bigger blanket down on the floor for the babies now, and they still end up off of it, and opposite ends -- Eleanor is officially moving backwards now also. It's pretty funny to see this big blanket with lots of beautiful wooden toys on it... and the babies backed up into the corners of the room.

Eating is only so so. I'm trying to give her more foods but she's not showing much interest. I got this gorgeous raw cottage cheese -- it's a very slight pale yellow because of all the beta carotene and high butterfat from grass fed cows. And Calliope won't touch it. Not even if I put it through the food mill. Not even if I mix it with breastmilk. (I actually whipped out my boob and added straight-from-the-spigot warm milk, hoping to tempt the Princess's palate... instead, she shrieked outrage that milk was being sprayed somewhere other than her mouth. In other words: colassal fail). Tonight, I tried (again with) avocado (last time, it made her vomit), mashing it up very carefully and adding breastmilk, this time from the refrigerator. Another fail. She did eat some squash last night and today for lunch. She tried babaganoush a couple of times and seemed to like it. Two nights ago, I offered it to her again, and she liked it at first but then abruptly burst into tears. My friend's four year old had just accidentally knocked her over so I thought that was it... until my friend pointed out that Calliope's chin was fire engine red (she had hit the back of her head when she fell so it wasn't an injury) and her cheeks were flushed as well. I stopped the babaganoush and gave her a little water. I few minutes later she found the lid of the babaganoush and put it in her mouth (it didn't have any visible food on it) and she abruptly began to wail anguished cries again. So I think there was something to it. I actually noticed my own lips were a little itchy and burning from the babaganoush as well (my siblings and I all have this reaction to eggplant sometimes... my sister says it's an allergy but I'm always a little skeptical). But I was fine with another brand of the stuff, and so was Calliope, so who knows?

We had our first swimming lesson last week!

Due to sleep issues -- namely, an early waking, followed by an early waking, and thus readiness for a nap right when lessons started -- it wasn't a hit at first. I reluctantly nursed her on the side of the pool while the other parents blew bubbles with the babies in the pool, and although she clearly wanted to nurse to sleep, water or no, she eventually rallied, and by the end, she was having fun kicking her legs -- which looked ridiculously tiny in the pool, like a doll -- and enjoying the water. I'm hoping the schedule will work better next time. It was fun, even if quite short considering all the prep work and travel time.

The big news is that... I'm considering real estate. As in, buying a place.

I've been trying to convince myself that this is a bad idea.

That I should stay with renting. And keep my finances liquid. And my options open.

But you know, at the end of the day, I really want to own my own place. It feels like putting down roots. And I'm ready to do that. To put down roots.

Even if it's really terrifying.

I might have to move a little further from the park, though I'm hoping to not be more than one additional subway stop at most. But I think I can find something that would be affordable, that wouldn't be more than the monthly rental cost for a two bedroom. Which it looks like we may be needing sooner rather than later... if I don't fall into co-sleeping...