Monday, June 30, 2008

Little Mister = Little Monkey

First there was the climbing.

Second came an incident that occurred just a few minutes ago. I was changing a not-very-sweet-smelling diaper when he thrashed and wiggled and kicked, all in one motion, almost flinging himself off the changing table. While I wrestled him back onto the table and onto his back - without my noticing - he stuck his hand down into his diaper. When I had a clean diaper on him I looked at his face...which was, of course, smeared with his "treasure." Mostly around his mouth. He looked at me, smiled, and threw the rest of his findings onto the floor.

It seems his transformation is nearly complete.

If he starts trying to pick (invisible) bugs out of my hair, I'm calling a zoo.

Friday, June 27, 2008


I got mail today
My first letter from Daddy
He misses me lots

(haiku by the Little Mister)

For more haiku fun, click here.

* * * * * * *

I've been thinking about mail lately (obviously). On my last post many people commented on how much they like to get "real" mail - just like me! - so I thought I'd spread some love, via the post office. Would you like to find a postcard in your mailbox? Email your address to me - dragonflywings27 (at) yahoo (dot) com - and I'll send you a postcard from Europe!

* * * * * * *

Angela at Memoirs of a Chaotic Mommy gave me a bloggy present!

She sent me some love because I'm living without the Sergeant...just like she's living without her deployed husband right now.

I get to share some love too...

To Mary Beth and Helen, who sent me a surprise when I was having a rough time, and also to their sister Amanda...because their family is dealing with some rough stuff at the moment.

And to Mrs. Staff Sergeant, another military wife, who is pregnant with baby #3! (I needed lots of hugs when I was pregnant...a cyber-hug can't hurt, right?)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

my lost art

I have a friend in Ohio, Birdie, I've known literally since I was born. I don't remember living near her (we moved to Michigan when I was 13 months old) but after a trip to visit when I was around ten we started writing letters to each other. Long distance phone calls were too expensive for ten-year-olds, and email didn't even exist, so we wrote letters. I remember letters scribbled in pencil in spiral notebooks, ripped out with torn and ragged edges, folded in no particular way, and stuffed into an envelope. A stamp cost 25 cents.

Those days are burned into my memory. I'd put the stamped and addressed envelope into the mailbox and sit at the window waiting for the mailman to pick it up and put it in his big, blue bag. Then it was a waiting game. Starting the next day (okay, so I wasn't entirely rational) I'd check the mail as soon as it came, looking for a reply from Birdie. On the day I finally found a letter with my name on it I'd tear into it, read through it three or four times, and then run off searching for my spiral notebook and a sharp pencil.

In some ways my letter-writing has evolved. A stamp is 42 cents, for one thing. Somewhere along the way I adopted stationary and note cards. I make my own "fun" envelopes out of wrapping paper or magazine pages. I have many colored pens in several different cases, right where I know they are, instead of having to search for a pencil. I almost always put a sticker or two on the envelope. When I'm feeling particularly festive I sometimes put a pinch of confetti inside (people have learned the hard way to be careful when opening a note from me!). My handwriting is much more legible. Oh, and I'm paying for the stamps myself instead of digging through Mom's bill basket to find hers.

But some things haven't changed at all. I'm still obsessive about checking the mail. While I force myself to save the letter for last, opening the boring mail first, I still read a letter through several times as soon as it is opened...and then read it again an hour or so later. And, until about a year ago, I still wrote a reply within a day or two of receiving a letter from a friend.

And that's where my art is lost...or at least misplaced. When the Little Mister was born my outgoing mail, aside from a three-sentence note with a new picture of the bug here or there, dwindled from a rushing stream to a mere trickle. That's understandable: I was learning how to be a mom, getting to know my little boy, exploring Europe... Since the Sergeant left for the Middle East in April even the trickle has dried up. I write to him every night before I go to bed (yes, letters - you can't hold an email in your hand!), and I still hand-write thank-you notes (an issue for another post), but other than that...nothing. My brain is so frazzled from being a "single mom" that when the Little Mister goes to sleep all I want to do is sleep. Or possibly read blogs.

But I miss correspondence. I miss finding letters in the mailbox. Because, really, you have to write letters to get letters! Living so far away from all my friends, I miss seeing their handwriting on an envelope. I miss holding onto something they made just for me, something that has traveled across the ocean to find me.

So. My goal is to write a real letter to everyone in my address book (that's not as crazy as it sounds; while I keep old addresses in a different book, my current book is up-to-date) by the end of summer (the "real" end of summer, the autumnal me a little more time than saying Labor Day!). Can I do it? I don't know...but if I work on it I'll at least be writing again. I miss it.

Birdie and I are still friends, good friends, even though we've lived far apart since we were about my son's age (wow!). While I was in Michigan my mom talked to Birdie's mom, and found out that Birdie is having a rough time. And because I'd cut myself off, so to speak, I didn't know about it.

I think Birdie is first on my list.

Birdie, me, and Birdie's little sister
a camping trip, early 1990s

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Please pass the Excedrin.

My son is climbing. Climbing! He isn't walking yet (though he's close, he took two unassisted steps to me on his birthday), but he's climbing. And doesn't he look proud of himself?

Let the headaches begin.

Tonight in the tub (before the pictures were taken) I noticed him trying to climb out of the tub. Oh no, I thought. It's starting. I was actually talking to the Sergeant at the time, and he remarked that it's time to baby-proof his bedroom (right now he doesn't play in there, just sleeps and has his diaper changed) to be ready for the time he climbs out of his crib. It's something the Sergeant and I have discussed before: once he climbs out of his crib he's getting a toddler bed. I would not be able to sleep thinking he might climb out of his crib and crack his head open. I'd rather put a gate in his doorway, to keep him in the room, and let him climb out of the bed when he wants. I'm hoping that day will be far away, but I'm not counting on it. Especially considering that not an hour after the Sergeant and I talked tonight, the Little Mister climbed up into his cubby.

Good grief.

What am I going to do??

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Home Again


Vacations are good. Time with family and friends I don't often see is also good. Watching my son with so many people who love him: excellent.


I am happy to be home, to sleep in my own bed (covered with kitties), to cook lunch in my own kitchen with my own pans and eat that lunch with my own dishes. I'm even happy to have my tiny washer and dryer to do my laundry.

And on the way home from the airport, to drive through mountains under blue skies, with three sleeping kids in the backseat and a friend beside me: priceless.

Friday, June 6, 2008

to my beautiful boy:

Happy Birthday!!

My life will never be the same.

June 6, 2007

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

exhausted...but having fun!

Aaahhhh...vacation. Who knew that something supposed to be relaxing could so wear me out?? ;)

We flew in on May 20, had "girls night out" on May 22...and on May 23 I got sick. Everyone in my parents' house had some nasty bug, and I got it too. (I'm so thankful the Little Mister didn't get it!!) I know, I know. I just got over being sick! But that's immune system and I just don't get along. *sigh*

We've been keeping busy, though, with trips to two different zoos, to visit grandparents and great-grandparents, shopping (oh, how I've missed American malls, and Target!), and walks to the library and my favorite ice cream shop.

I'm feeling much better now (barely even coughing, woo hoo!), although I'm tired out from all the driving and walking and visiting and shopping. There's more coming up, including the Little Mister's very first birthday party this Friday!! (Where, oh where, did the time go??!)

I leave you now with some pictures of my cute little bug. Because it's my blog, and I can. ;)

my brother and the Little Mister at John Ball Zoo in Grand Rapids

the Little Mister "helping out" on Risk night
(in case you're thinking "that's not a Risk board!"'s Lord of the Rings Risk)

looking at the fountain at the Detroit Zoo

riding in the wagon with his cousin
(she "took care of" the Little Mister...way cute!)

posing with the "kitty"