Saturday, May 23, 2009

I swear we're not studying the states!

Today in the car Emmett asked me if I knew what an Oregon Solo was. When I said no, he said it was a piano solo. Strange, but I just replied, "Huh. Ok."

Then David started laughing. "It's an organ solo, not Oregon!" he said quietly. Again, I'm wondering if I should tell Emmett.

Thursday, May 21, 2009


The drawings are actually called sona (singular: lusona - that's where we get Louisiana). Now I can't decide if I want to tell him or not.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


For the past couple of months, I really haven't been doing any structured learning stuff with Emmett. The end of the pregnancy was tough, and now I have a newborn! He's been reading lots, of course, so something is going into his head. Today I got a glimpse of some of it.

He's been talking to me about fractions, and I wanted to introduce him to the terms "numerator" and "denominator" so I wrote a fraction and pointed to the top number and told him it was the numerator. He seemed to recognize the word, so I asked him if he knew it already - he did (from reading The Number Devil). I asked him if he knew what the bottom number was called and he said, "denominator."

He's also been reading his topology book a lot, and filling up his notebook with drawings that he calls "Louisianas." These are drawings that have a bunch of dots, and then a curve that winds around them, leaving some inside and some outside of the curve. I'm not sure what the topology book says about them, so I guess I should check that out...

At bedtime tonight, he was apparently reading book about senses. He came out to tell David and I that he read about a guy who's brain assigned shapes to tastes. Laughing so hard he almost couldn't get it out, he told us, "He once said his chicken dinner had too many corners in it!"

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A baby who sleeps?

It's kind of strange having a baby who sleeps a lot, and is disgruntled only a little (pausing briefly to knock on every piece of wood I can find!). It really emphasizes the "fourth trimester" that I've heard about. Henry mostly eats and sleeps, waking up enough to look around a bit and wave his arms to keep his brain development on track. Otherwise, he's pretty much still gestating.

His fingers are much more coordinated than they were when they were born - instead of each one having a mind of its own, they all grasp together now. His keeps his legs extended much of the time, too, rather than tucked up near his body. This adds emphasis to his size!

He's already lost some of the squishy-ness of a newborn, in which their face is distorted by whatever they're leaning on, including their own shoulders. He still squirms, though. My favorite is when he arches his back with his arms pulled in up high near his sideways turned head and his legs pulled in like a frog. He'll usually do that when I pick him up while he's sleeping. Maybe that's the origin of stretching when you wake up. I just love squishy, squirmy, cuddly newborns.

Friday, May 15, 2009


I don't want to jinx it, but I've been out of the house with all three kids twice now, and it's gone great both times. We went to Target a few days ago with a relatively short list, and it went fine. The hardest thing was moving Luke in and out of the cart with Henry in a sling. Henry did his part and slept the whole time. I nursed him in the car before going home, but the older boys were patient and didn't complain about that at all.

Today, we went to Ikea, and it was fine again. I do think I have to change the way we get out of the house a little. Typically, Henry is asleep while I get the boys ready and strap them into the car. Then I grab Henry, change his diaper, put him in his carseat, and head out. Today, though, he was hungry. Not far from home I stopped to nurse him because he hadn't settled down in the car. Again, Emmett and Luke waited patiently and I don't think it even occurred to them to complain (whew!). In the future, I think I'll be sure to nurse Henry just before getting in the car, if he's interested. After nursing today, Henry slept in the car and in the carrier at Ikea.

Mostly, I'm reporting this here so if it changes dramatically, I can at least remember what it was like when it was relatively easy...


Twice now, Henry has started a big yelling fit when he accidentally grabbed a big fist full of hair and pulled it.

Windows to the soul

Now two weeks old, Henry is making clear eye contact. Sometimes on the changing table, he'll make eye contact by looking at you in the mirror. He really seems to be studying us now.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


Henry has very long fingers and toes. My middle finger isn't longer than my palm, but Henry's is! When he was first born and his fingers moved around with minds of their own, his hands reminded me of anemones with fingers as little independent tentacles.


I got out our old mobile, to see if Henry would like looking at it. Of course, Emmett and Luke were fascinated and played with it for a long time once it was out. It plays some classical music, so Emmett read "Beethoven" as "Benhoven," and "Bach" as "Botch."

Henry does watch the mobile. In fact, he can already track it both with his eyes and by moving his head to keep his gaze on one of the elements. That is a big improvement over when he was first born, when his eyes didn't even track together, much less fix on an object.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

2 week checkup

Henry's 2 week stats:

10 lb 11 ounces
22 inches long
38.6 cm head circumference

I thought he gained a lot of weight, so I checked on Emmett's and Luke's numbers. In the first two weeks, Emmett put on 19.5 ounces. For some reason, Luke's first real doctor visit was at three weeks, at which point he had also put on 20 ounces, so I guess it's just normal (for us, at least).

Monday, May 11, 2009

Useful Work

The gardeners come on Tuesdays to mow the lawn, so on Monday nights David clears the lawn of dog poop and toys. This evening, I asked the boys to help get the toys off the lawn, and they ran outside to help! Often "help" is just playing in the vicinity of where help is needed, but this time they actually took all the toys off the lawn!

Emmett is old enough now to be very helpful, and he has been great helping me since Henry was born. But tonight, not only was Emmett helpful, Luke really helped too! I guess he sees Emmett's example and wants to be helpful, too. At Luke's age and without a role model, Emmett wasn't doing useful work at all.

The Daddy

Luke has been overtired for a while now - it's difficult to get him a good nap and we just haven't had the time to devote to that. Sometimes "overtired" leads to nighttime disturbances - luckily there haven't been many.

When I snuggle Luke to sleep, he always wants to touch this mole on my chest. David has been the one responding to him at night lately, and since David doesn't have a mole, Luke has a different snuggle routine with him. He takes both hands and grabs David around the neck and hangs on. David says it's like an odd "hanging on to my head" hug.

Saturday, May 09, 2009


Sometimes Luke will make this "surprised" face - he opens his eyes and mouth wide and inhales a bit. It's really cute. Yesterday Luke asked me why my breasts are so big. I told him it was because they're making milk for Henry. He made the face, but he seemed to buy it.

Thursday, May 07, 2009


Emmett's front tooth is so loose now that it wobbles violently (and distractingly!) when he talks. He insists that while it can easily flip forward to horizontal, it still hurts if he tugs downward on it. He's clearly apprehensive about exactly how this tooth is going to come out, despite reassurance that the dentist won't have to pull it, and that it shouldn't hurt much if at all when it finally comes out

I remember those feelings well - I was so careful about my first loose front tooth that it actually fell onto my tongue when I went to bed one night. Like mother like son, I guess.

UPDATE - just a few hours later, the tooth is out! :)

Sunday, May 03, 2009


Luke and I have worked out a way to snuggle with Luke to my side and Henry on the boppy. Luke will often interact with Henry while we're doing this. Yesterday I noticed that Luke was holding Henry's forearm and shaking it gently. Then I saw that it was rhythmic - shake, shake, shake, stop. Then I saw that Luke was throwing the "scissors" sign with his other hand, and it all came together in my head.

The best part is that when Luke is playing rock-scissors-paper he pretty much only throws scissors. Henry, of course, has his hands in a fist most of the time, so Henry was winning by a landslide.


It's fun watching as the new brother relationships form. For Emmett this is all familiar, even though he doesn't explicitly remember much about Luke joining the family. He's very sweet with Henry, cooing at him, calling him cute, generally mimicking the way adults react to babies.

Luke is doing quite well, especially considering how attached to me he is. David and I have been doing our best to carve out and protect one-on-one time for me and Luke, but obviously his time has been cut into. Still, Luke seems happy with Henry. He likes to gently touch him, and he's always interested in what's going on with Henry.

It's not all rosy, though. At music class, David said Luke would go back and forth between being normal and "mad." You know Luke's mad when he growls at you, or makes his "mad face," or sticks his tongue out at you. So far none of that has been directed at me or the baby, though.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Let the nicknaming begin

Babies make so many squeaky, squirmy noises that change so fast from day to day that I find myself calling them by different nicknames all the time. Henry's had two of note so far.

On day one his high need to suck became clear when he willingly accepted our fingers for extended periods during which he'd attempt to take the skin off. This led to "Little Henry Hoover."

Another manifestation of Henry's "mouthy-ness" happens at night. When he wakes up, he doesn't really cry, he makes these sniffling, snuffling, slurping noises while he roots around, sucking on his fists when he can find them. Watching and listening to this led to name #2, "Snuffleupagus."

At this point the nicknames are entirely context dependent - I call him Squirmy when he's squirming, Squeaky when he's squeaking, etc. At some point I'll probably call him Bear or Bunny, the nicknames I use for both Emmett and Luke (and the dogs too, sometimes).