Saturday, December 31, 2005

New Year, Same Old Me

My New Year resolutions:

  • I will stop caring so much what people think about me
  • I will be more patient
  • I will tidy up after myself more
  • I will lose weight

My New Year Resolutions that I will fail to keep:

  • I will stop caring so much what people think about me
  • I will be more patient
  • I will tidy up after myself more
  • I will lose weight

Oh well...

I really REALLY missed my family this Christmas. Which is silly really, because Christmas with Peter's family are generally more fun (We play games and we go to bed really early. Ok, fun for ME.) Then there was New Year's Eve... New Year's Eve went something like this: I forgot it was New Year's Eve. I remembered around 21:00, and I also remembered that our fridge was empty (because we were at Peter's Family's for Christmas.) Supermarkets would be closed for two days, and Peter had to rush out and get emergency supplies (so we wouldn't have to eat the Cat.) While he was out I got lonely, and it was too late to start calling people on the phone.... Then it dawned on me: this is the ONE night when it's not too late to call anyone. So I called the Greeks for Greek New Year (22:00 in this country) until Peter came back with microwave ready meals and orange juice. After that, we wished eachother a Happy (Greek) New Year, jumped in bed and watched recorded Lost episodes. This, as some of you will know, is VASTLY different to what I used to do in Greece on New Year's Eve. Back then, in my wild days of youthful abandon, I would slink around until I finally collapsed somewhere and fell asleep. Then my brother would come poke me and say "wake up you doink, it's ten minutes to midnight," whereupon I would drag my bleary-eyed self to the next room, wish everybody a happy new year, and collapse again. Ah, those were the days.

On a more up-beat tone, Matilda now can:

  • smile and laugh al along if people are laughing at a joke -never mind that she can't understand it!
  • Jump in her bouncer -for ages. As long as you look at her and say "Well done baby!" she'll give you a big grin and jump even harder.
  • Smile at and reach for the cat. Same for toys that she wants. We have communication.
  • Generally, if you haven't figured it out, she smiles a lot.
  • Roll from back to tummy, both sides.
  • Sit up with support.
  • Pull herself up and stand for a while, if you hold her for balance, or let her hold on to your fingers.

She still has one dimple on one side of her face. She grabs her ear and holds on to it when she wants to fall asleep (what's up with that?) and we spend sweet, sweet mornings cuddled up together in bed, with her stirring in her sleep, stroking my sleeve (or the nearest boobie, heh-heh) and falling asleep again. You're still there mummy, ok. Stay there.

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Jill thinks Matilda looks like my mum in this picture:

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We like to call this picture The Heil Boobie:

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Sunday, December 11, 2005

Houston, what is a problem?

Check this out: Channel 4's new show takes innocent (if slightly stupid) members of the british public, and convinces them that they've been selected to become the first televised, british cosmonauts. They will be flown to a training base in Russia, and will be launched into space after three weeks of intensive training. Yes, I said weeks, not years. Want more?

In reality, they were put into a plane, flown around for a few hours, and then landed back in the UK, in an old military base decorated with russian paraphernalia for extra authenticity. After 3 weeks of science and lectures (during which they were told, for example, that they wouldn't experience weightlessness because they wouldn't fly deep enough in space, plus the ship has 3 artificial gravity generators,) 3 of them (plus 1 actor) were flown in to space (i.e. shut in an MDF simulator) to conduct experiments, such as plugging mixers in a tomato, to see if fruit and veg generate electricity in space. Sorry to the greeks who couldn't watch it, but here's a few links for more information:,14676,1655651,00.html?gusrc=rss

Other goodies:
Charlie the actor, refering to the cadets' (lack of) reaction re the weightlessness: "You could tell these people that the gravity generators are run by miniaturised hamsters running on nano-wheels, and they'd nod and take notes."

During the selection phase, anyone who could name more than 4 Star Trek characters was eliminated as a dangerous know-it-all.

I FINALLY got to see some pictures of my new niece, Maria-Lorna. She's Katerina's baby, she was born 3 weeks after Matilda... Isn't she sweet? I can't wait to meet her... And it probably won't happen until September, when we go down for the christening. It's really depressing, all these things happening in the lives of people I really really care about, and I'm over here and can't see them :( Ugh.

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Some lady today at the Post Office saw Matilda and said "She'll be a nice person, she has kind eyes." It must be the nicest thing anyone's ever said about her. I hope so baby, I hope so!

Oh, and go read this:

It's sooooooooooooo funny, (Horrible, politically in-correct and plain wrong, but hey, you can't beat the above for entertainment.)

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Monday, December 05, 2005

Don't call me baby!

Some things I call Matilda. Most of them won't make sense to the non Greeks, but I had to write them down so I don't forget in years to come.

Cakes (Short for babycakes)
Parrot (when she squawks like one -now for instance.)
Shut Up!
End of transmission

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Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Roll out the Red Carpet

... Matilda has rolled over! After days of fruitless efforts, of baby rolling on her side, falling on her arm and getting stuck there, she finally Made It on Monday evening. She started off by holding on to my finger and pulling herself over, but now she can make it on her own. I guess this is the start of mobility and all sorts of trouble, but I can't help feeling proud nevertheless. Now when the cat is lying next to her she tries to roll towards him, and when she gets a bit too close for comfort he just gives her a nudge with his paw and she rolls back on her back again.

She has the very charming habit of looking up at me and smiling when she wakes up in the morning. I suspect all babies do that. Still, it's special. Also, right now she's sitting on my lap and having the hick-ups. Also-also, she's started babbling to herself and others in a voice that sounds like Marge Simpson. ("Aaaaaaaaaaaaaarw. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrw. Where's my cigarette?")

A few days ago we woke up to this outside our window: Matilda's first snow, only she couldn't play with it yet. Here it is:

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So guess what I did yesterday (Wednesday. I don't know when I'll manage to complete this.) I bought a pram with a toddler seat. On which Matilda will sit when her little brother or sister is born. Whom we haven't started trying to conceive yet, and won't be trying for at least until March. Isn't it a beauty though? Just missing (another) baby now! :)

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This week the cat has learned how to open the bathroom door. He jumps up, hangs from the door handle and presto, he's in. During the past few days, Peter and I have had to get used to the door suddenly opening, Domino walking in, giving the floor a sniff and walking out again. Now if ONLY we could teach him how to close the door on his way out I wouldn't mind that much, but it gets a bit breezy, you know?

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People who see this picture ask why we're making baby-salad. Tempting, but it's just a bathtub... Supposedly it imitates the position they had in the womb, and (more importantly, as far as I'm concerned) Matilda can sit in it without needing me to hold her all the time... She really likes it. I don't actually own the thing (It's a plastic BUCKET that costs £20,) my neighbour lent it to me for a week, but Matilda liked it so much that I'm seriously tempted (even though I'll feel stupid afterwards for buying a bucket that costs £20.)

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And here's a couple of funnies... The first story is TRUE. I thought it might have been the newspaper playing a joke on the readers, but I looked it up and it's actually a real product. Have fun!,,2-1868371,00.html,,2-1799449,00.html


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Wednesday, November 02, 2005

...have you heard the one with the baby?

Matilda is developing a sense of humour! Last night I was trying to feed her and she kept teasing me, turning towards the nipple and then looking up with this goofy grin, expecting me to laugh with her. Again...and again...and again. She obviously thought she had come up with the best joke in her life (not that that's saying much,) and was enjoying every minute of it, the little tease! I never thought I'd have to say it this early, but MATILDA STOP PLAYING WITH YOUR FOOD!

She's also stopped crying, and instead she has taken up what we call "doing the parrot." It sounds a bit like this: Croack-croack- Shriek SHRIEK! SHRIEK! SHRIIIEEEEEEK! SCREEEEEECH! (Repeated indefinately until you give her whatever she wants. But not crying. Crying is for babies -doh!)

Also, in this month's issue...

Children are so sweet: Especially Natalie's children. They're used to babies, they like them, and they don't mind showing it. They've gotten to see Matilda a bit more lately, as we've been more out and about, and they're all over her every time. Ola (2,5) will try to feed her crisps, and she'll bring her precious cuddle-blanket to me, so I can cuddle Matilda with it. Reggie (4) likes her a lot too, and introduces her to his friends when we go to their place. ("Look, look Edward! This is Matilda!") and wants me to put her on the bed next to him ("Look, she's not crying! I made her stop! She really likes me, mummy!") It's almost too sweet to watch (but not quite. I love watching it.) Also by Reggie: "Matilda! Matilda! Matilda! Oh Matilda, you're adorable!"

Here's Matilda with the Next Size Up (Atticus)

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Awwwww, aren't they sweet? No pressure there, but don't they make a nice couple, wink-wink-nudge? (Oh, and don't mind the punching. They were holding hands a few minutes ago.)

Cradle Cap Cure: Matilda has developed a small but annoying case of cradle cap -it's like baby dandruff, and apparently, the recomended course is massaging the baby's head with oil. So I've been oiling my little grease-monkey regularly, and now the cat likes her EVEN MORE! He keeps wanting to lick and groom her head, which causes her to coo with pleasure, and also, conviniently, causes the flakes to come off. So there you go, a truly ORGANIC cradle cap cure. Infact, that's what he's doing right now, that's why I got the time to blog. I keep trying to take a picture, but he's too fast for me... SOME DAY!

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Preggo Brain Revisited: Here's an actual conversation I had at the swimming pool, with some of the (still pregnant) aquanatal girls. (And before you acuse me of being mean, I refer you to my Farewell to Braincells post. I am NOT pointing any fingers here. Just stating the funny.)

-Have you seen Rachel, she had a little boy.
-Oh, who's Rachel, I don't remember her...

-Ummm, blonde, due about the same time as me...
-Oh, the one from Slovakia?
-No, that was Sylvia. Rachel was with us that day we went out for lunch.
-Oh, a reall small girl with a ponytail?
-No, that was Zoe. Rachel was the one who said she had to go back to walk her dog.
-Oh, the one with the swollen feet!
-Yes, the one with the swollen feet.
-I remember her now... What was her name?

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Here's Matilda Sleeping on her Daddy... So sweet.

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Sunday, October 09, 2005

Long Awaited Cat Post

Now, just because I keep going on about Matilda, don't think the cat isn't getting his due any more. His Squeekiness is still my fur-baby, just as her Poopiness is still my bald-baby (and getting balder as we speak, as her belly-hair is falling out, tee-hee.)

Other differences, in case some of you have trouble telling the cat and the baby appart, include:
  • Matilda sucks my blood, Domino just draws it (and that's a bit of a waste, to be honest... mwahaha!)
  • Domino can play fetch, we're still working on Matilda's skills.
  • Matilda gets brought toys by people, Domino gets to play with them.
  • Domino poops every day, and Matilda is due to have one big Ueber-Poop since three days now.

Rule of thumb: If it's in the pram, it's likely to be a cat:

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My mum has always disliked cats. She is the reason I got the bunny in Corfu, and subsequently had the very house eaten from under my feet for the next 5 years; I thought if I got a cat, I wouldn't be allowed back to the family house, and possibly would be disowned.

When I called my mum to tell her we got Domino, her reply was:

"WHY did you get a stinking cat?" (Or something to that effect.)

"Mum, we don't live there anymore. It's our house."

"Ok well, I have to go now. I'm too upset."


When she came to visit us a month ago, her introductory words were, I seem to recall, "Get it away from me!" Two days later, the cat was sleeping next to her every night, and she's been overheard sweet talking to him. Oh, and when he was coughing up a hairball a couple of nights ago, she got so worried that she let him sleep in her bed, and she slept sitting on the armchair. (I particularly love telling people this insident, after all the years she maintained "cats are mean, jealous and they steal food.") THAT'S how sweet our cat is.

Oh, and I welcome comments from anyone who can help me with this question:

Why do people think I spoil my pets?!

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PS: A full week has passed since I first started writting this post, before I managed to sit down and finish it. Just so you know why I take so long to read your emails! :)

PPS: Awwwww...

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Friday, October 07, 2005

Baby Boom!

Matilda is going to have soooo many little cousins to torture... err... love and play with! Maria Lorna is already here, and by Christmas Cathy's baby will be here too, and in April, another one will be added to the collection, as we found out yesterday that Stella, Peter's cousin's wife (impressive phrase, that!) is also preggers :) Call me obsessed, but I'm excited!

Our Goodling is now all smiles, and takes some amazing pictures. She'll give you this half-shy smile, turning her head and looking at you from the corner of her eye -the tease! She coos and gurgles a lot, and has also recently discovered that she has hands, so now she spends a lot of time looking at them and grabbing one hand with the other. Clearly evolution at work -next comes using tools. She's getting her first shots on Tuesday, and after that, I'll start taking her to the swimming pool. She LOVES baths. She just sits there, floating and staring at me and cooing, and she cries when I take her out. Oh, not to mention that she is now wearing clothes for 3-6 months, and today is her 2 month birthday :) And I'm walking around town, shamelessly breastfeeding wherever the mood (or Matilda) takes me.

Speaking of which, my neighbour Natalie was at a birthday party recently, breastfeeding her baby and a little boy was asking:
"What is he doing? What is he doing?"
"He's having his milk"
"THAT'S not his milk!!!!"
At which point her 4 year old proceded to lift her shirt and show the other boy what's what:
"Sure it is, look, see? He's hanging on like a train carriage (!!!!!)"

WHAT is it with little boys and breasts anyway? (See my last post)

It is starting to become obvious how having a family is fun. I have this baby who uses my boob for a pillow at night (No, really, she does! She falls asleep breastfeeding, and at some point lets the nipple go, sighs, and settles her head on my boob... and sleeps there. It's so sweet that I don't want to spoil it and end up sleeping with one breast hanging out -but you didn't want to know that, did you? ;) and I can't pretty much complain about my looks any more, because she looks like me, and I like HER! I see how other people's children interact with each other (ok, Natalie's) and I'm looking forward to the next one!

This neighbour came over the other day to ask for a favour, and I mentioned that one of the things I like about our house is the size of the rooms. I said, I figure I can have 4 kids sleeping in the large bedroom. She started laughing -and THEN she realised I was being serious! Tee-hee.

WHY? Why do people think kids NEED to have so much STUFF and SPACE? I remember when I was little how nice it was that we kept our bread warm on the fire (instead of remembering we had no central heating until I was 9) or how when I had a fight with my brother we'd stick sticky-tape on the floor to separate our room to "my half" and "his half", or how I'd get sleepy at night and nagg him to go to bed too, because I liked having a chat before falling asleep (and we shared a room until I was 14 -no lasting damage to my personality or anything!) Or what fun it was in the summers, when sometimes it would be 6 of us cousins sleeping in one room, and in any case, certainly 4 of us. And on most of the day there was no running water. So when the water came we'd run around filling bottles and buckets, and shower in pairs in our bathing costumes, to save time. It wasn't deprived, it was FUN. So yes, I can fit 4 in that room, and I bet they'd like it too.

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Look mummy, what a lovely teddy uncle Jon and auntie Stella sent me!

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Oh who am I kidding, my hand is more interesting!

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Tuesday, September 27, 2005

"Mummy, I saw that lady's Boobies!" declared by an amazed 4 year old who saw me nursing Matilda at a party recently. I am now in the business of educating our young. I provide a valuable service, and he'll be very grateful when he's 14 and hasn't seen any for a while, I bet!

As if you thought I could stay quiet for long!

My mum is here visiting, and I just can't make the time to sit and blog anymore... It's amazing how time flies when you're sitting there, listening to another mother telling you how brilliant you are with your baby. ESPECIALLY when said mother obviously knows what she's talking about, since she has done such a brilliant job with you (Modest? Noooo.)

I don't think we were made to bring up babies alone. I think we were supposed to have a circle of female relatives and friends constantly surrounding us and offering moral support. I really, trully think that we're punishing ourselves trying to be independent these days. It's amazing how much better I feel having my mum here. She doesn't have to do anything, not even hold the baby. I still do everything. It's just having her here watching in approval that makes all the difference.

So I've had some parenting revelations since you last heard from me.

First, my mum came and met her grandaughter. I was so waiting for her to come! I think my mum is a brilliant mother, one of those women you hear about who are naturals. Babies' tears transform to smiles when she's around. She can decipher the babble of babies that aren't even her own. She never loses her patience. She chews binkies and spits up rattles, that's how good she is. Since Matilda was born I've always compared myself to her and felt I was lacking something. And then she came. And every time she picked Matilda up, Matilda cried and looked to me. when I took her, she instantly stopped. She wanted me! I'm more than the person with the boobies. I'm not my mum, but I'm her mum.

Then, some days later, we went to a birthday party (where I met the voyeuristic little boy mentioned above.) At some point, I ended up holding someone elses baby, and some other mum ended up holding Matilda. Matilda was absolutely fine with the arrangements, but after a while, I was getting hot and bothered. Why am I holding this strange baby? I should be holding my own! I don't like this baby anymore, take it back! The other mum asked me a couple of times if I minded her holding Matilda, and I couldn't very well say yes, so I ended up following her around like a lost puppy, asking over and over again "Is she ok? Oh alright then. No, no... Just checking." Revelation number two. I actually like my baby enough to want her back when I get a break from her! It sounds obvious, but it isn't, not when I'm spending my entire day holding or carrying or feeding or changing her. This was the first time that I could actually reassure myself that I love her, not just like her.

And finally last Thursday, we were at the doctor for Matilda's 6 week check up. After she was asleep and had to be woken up a few times by prodding nurses ("Awwww, bless. Nothing as peaceful as a sleeping baby. " Poke.) I had to wake her up yet again and undress her for the doctor to poke her. Understandably, she started crying. I couldn't pick her up so I just stroked her face and talked to her while she was being examined. And she stopped! Revelation number three. My baby looks to me for comfort and gets it. I'm a mum.

Matilda now smiles and coos and shrieks in joy, she stares at her hands and follows things around, holds her head up and is trying to roll over. The other day at the doctor's office, I was nursing her and she looked up and gave me this completely goofy smile, with the nipple still in her mouth. And she has these amazing dimples that I have no idea where she got from. Noone I know of in either side of the family has dimples. Obviously, a random bonus from the Powers-That-Be, to make her look even cuter.

Here you go, have a smile!

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Sunday, September 25, 2005

Pointless Picture Post

No time to blog. Must change nappy. Must wipe baby drool. Must worship baby.

Take pictures instead. I'm not important anyway!

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Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Matilda - The Musical

Our Little Vampire is a month old today. What an exciting time it has been! (Exciting, synonymus with breath-taking and dangerous?) We seem to be a lot more in control of things now, though, which is nice. When I think back (through the fog of confusion and terror) to the first 2 weeks, I am amazed at how much better things are now. And at how UNPREPARED I was about how difficult it would be. Have I said that before? (YES YOU HAVE!) Here's a joke for all of you that have children: Before Matilda was born, I actually signed up (and paid) for a First Aid course that would take place 3 (count them, one... two...three) weeks after I had Matilda. The course lasts 2 weekends, 6 hours every day. I thought, no sweat, Peter can come with, I can give her to him and nip out and breastfeed her when she's hungry. That's all she'll need, right?
Ummm.... yes. Luckily the nice people let me reschedule the course... For March. HOPEFULLY I'll be more able to multitask by then.

Peter has started work again on Monday, and I stayed alone with Matilda for the first time. Scary, but it went better than I thought! After the initial shock, I found that if I give her a short feed when we wake up, I can then stick her in the pouch and go around making breakfast without her complaining... Then I finish feeding her after I've put some caffeine in my system (Ah, the wonderful world of addictions!) To add to the list of my achievements, I have also managed (while alone with the baby) to:
Cook dinner (more than once, too!)
Wash the clothes and fold them
Paint my toe-nails (Just once, ok?)
Wax my legs
Go grocery shopping
Make the beds
Wash the dishes
Visit my neighbour

All Hail Super-Mum! (I might be getting just a TAD carried away here, but I'm just managing these things for the first time, bear with me (Or bare with me, breast-feeding joke, get it? Nudge-nudge snigger.) Here's a snippet of wisdom from the expert: if you have a baby in the pouch, don't wear socks. SO convenient to simply pick things up from the floor using your toes, instead of having to bend down. And good for stretching your muscles as well; hey, it's practically yoga!

Also, this week I've dared to go out of the house with the pram for the first time. All previous times, I just had Matilda in her pouch, but Thursday it was raining, so I had to take my chances with the pram. The reason this seemed like such a task that I had to put it off, is that it requires planning and speed worthy of an army operation to keep the cat in the house, the baby in the pram, and my sanity (almost) intact. If you're interested, here are the steps you have to follow to achieve a simple walk with the pram, if you're me:

1. Put Matilda in the Pouch.
2. Close Domino in the bathroom.
3. Open the door, and take the pram out.
4. Get back in and close the door. The baby is still in the pouch at this stage.
5. Release Domino from the bathroom.
6. Throw Domino's toy for him to chase and rush out the door while he's busy. (Try to avoid banging the baby's head on the door-frame at this stage.)
7. Check the pram is still waiting outside and no one has stolen it or thrown empty crisp packets in it.
8. Remove Matilda from the pouch and place her in the pram. Lock the door.
9. Remember you forgot your wallet inside. Bang head on door. (This step is optional and, frankly, best avoided.)

Our cat is still being very sweet, as he has been since Matilda was born. He was babysitting for me the other day. Matilda was in her pram in the kitchen and I was chopping veg, ready to pounce and pick her up if she started fussing. Domino got on the pram and sat on the hood, with his tail swishing around, and Matilda was so transfixed watching him that I managed a good ten minutes of chopping and washing before he got bored and went off to chase flies.
He also regularly goes upstairs while I'm sitting on the sofa breastfeeding, picks up one of the soft toys Matilda (Ok, I) have and brings it downstairs and deposits it on the sofa next to me. He's not supposed to do this, but it's soooo adorable I can't tell him off, and besides if I do, I suspect he'll simply stop bringing me the toys, and I'll have to chase for them around the house instead. However, the other day he decided my sanitary pads from the bathroom would make a good present and he proceeded to bring me the whole value-packet of pads I had left sitting on the shelf (leaving a trail of pads leading to the bathroom behind him.) Then he went back and brought me the discarded pads too, so all was well. Not a party trick to show guests, but I sure thought it was funny!

Domino had to go to the vet last week, and forego his masculinity for ever (he got castrated, ok?) He had developed an alarming habit of trying to hump our arms. I spent the day worrying sick about him, and he came back bright and full of the joys of life, so all was well. The vet sent him back with a pack of special food we were supposed to feed him for the first 24 hours, which he promptly gobbled down in 5 minutes so then we had to treat him to boiled chicken breast. Other than a certain emptiness between his legs, he's the same as always, only better behaved. Although he does still try to hump us some times, which is hillarious. (*Humpety hump rub-rub* *confused pause* "Wait, I seem to remember something exciting used to happen when I did that, what's wrong now? Blast, I never have any fun around here. I'll go eat instead." *walks away looking dignified*)

Apparently, sleep deprivation makes you creative, so here are a couple of songs I sing to Matilda:

(To the tune of Love is All Around)


I feel it in my fingers,
I feel it in my toes,
The poop is all around me
And still the volume grows...

You know you stink and
You always will
And I feel terror at the nappies you fill
There's no beginning
There'll be no end
To all the changes
I must attend!


It's all right
It's ok
We chew boobies every day
With a knick-knack
Paddy wack
Give the boob a bite
I will drink your blood all night!

But hey, don't let me make you think motherhood is no fun!
Here's how it's worth it:

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Tuesday, August 23, 2005

"This Breastfeeding Business is Bloody Boring!"

So, give La Leche League my phone number to organise a public lynching. I suppose I still have to get the hang of it. I was looking SOOOO forward to nursing Matilda, and now it's boring half of the time, and plain painful the rest of it. Don't get me wrong, I love gazing in my newborn's eyes as much as the next person. But, let me see now. My newborn nurses every two hours, for approximately one hour. That's a total of... oh... 8 hours a day (or not, I stink at Math.) And I can't NOT gaze at her when she's being quietly attentive, she's ADORABLE then, and makes sweet faces, and responds to me. So add a couple more hours there. Oh, and I gaze at her when she's sleeping quite a lot too. (Is she about to wake up? DEAR LORD, is she stirring?!) I'm sorry Friends and Neighbours, but aproximately 13 hours a day of gazing in my newborns eyes is a tad too much. I'd go for gazing at the page of a book, or my email, every now and then. I have to get organized and learn how to nurse one-handed (not to mention, NOT NECESSARILY sitting on the sofa, with 4 pillows, and preferably on the left side, please.)

Disclaimer: I do NOT intend to give up on breastfeeding. I hugely looked forward to it, and have been lucky enough that it seems to be going relatively smoothly, and I KNOW I'll enjoy it more as we get the hang of it. Thank you. *sits down*

I'm being funny, of course. In fact, Peter keeps trying to get me to go take a nap, and I can't seem to keep my eyes closed if I can be looking at her (invariably, suggested nap times are when she's quiet or sleeping -her most lovely times.) But it's amazing how unprepared I was for this mummy business. I wanted many children. I still do, I refuse to reconsider anything when I'm sleep-deprived, confused, and possibly a bit depressed. At some point I'll have figured this out, and then we can talk numbers. When I was pregnant, I read everything that crossed my path. I was prepared for everything, or rather, I was aware of everything. As it turned out, I knew nothing.

Book: Most newborns will want to breastfeed every couple of hours, and you might find that taxing.
Delusional Anna Voice: But I'll be gazing in her eyes! How could I find that boring!

(See above.)

Book: A lot of mothers feel very depressed a few days after the birth. This stage can last several days. Be careful so it doesn't turn to PPD.
Delusional Anna Voice: But I'll hopefully have a great birth experience, and be blissfuly happy with my baby and my wonderful, supportive husband. How could I feel depressed? I know, maybe I'll cry a bit on the day my milk comes in.
Once again, HA! I did have my great birth (I must be the only person I know who watches her birth video to cheer herself up. During the week I was feeling especially bad, I must have watched the thing six times.) The endorphine high was so strong that when the hormones started clearing up, I crashed like a ton of bricks. I'm talking a week of almost non-stop crying, punctuated by fits of uncontrolable sobbing and wailing (yes, I can joke about it -now.) Even when Matilda was being easy (asleep) I was crying, because she would wake up soon, and what would I do with her then? I felt like a terrible parent. I still feel like a terrible parent some of the time. (I'm enjoying her -but am I enjoying her ENOUGH? Does Peter like her ENOUGH? I love her about 2/3 of the time, but the remaining 1/3 I secretly hope someone would take her away for a while. How terrible does that make me? It's amazing how culturally conditioned I was that I would/should love her instantly, passionately, and unconditionally, that even though I was aware that it comes slower for some people, I still feel like a failure. And I spent my baby's 1st week birthday crying because she would eventually wake up and fuss, and now I have to live with that memory.)

Which brings me to my next point:
Book: Babies fuss and cry. Parents do things to try and help, like put them in the pram or car and go for a walk, or wear earplugs.
Delusional Anna Voice: Oh, you poor ignorant people! Don't you know, all you have to do is cuddle your baby, and feed her if she asks for it, and spend as much time as possible with her, and she'll be so content and feel so loved, she won't need to cry?
Ok, so I want to be AP when I grow up (and before Matilda does.) I don't judge other people (I was being funny before) but I do think that the fact that we carry her a lot, cuddle her a lot, feed her on demand and let her sleep with us at night has helped her sleep for 5-6 hours during the night already, and only cry when we change her nappy or in the evening. But BOY does she cry in the evening! Down the drain goes my theory about just having to follow my instincts and pick her up when she cries. At this stage, I have no interest in putting her on my, or anyone's schedule, and I'm very happy to just give her what she wants to be content. But from about 6 to about 9 in the evening, what she wants seems to be either to cry, or to chew on my nipple, occasionaly shaking her head around like a shark during a feeding frenzy. While crying, some times. Now I have a new theory: Babies are designed by nature to cry in the evenings, to scare away any prowling predators. Trust me, she can sound much bigger and meaner than she actually is.
Oh, and that thing about earplugs is actually Peter's idea. I'm tempted.

My cousin Katerina and her husband had their first baby girl, Maria Lorna, this Monday. She is only 2 weeks younger than Matilda. I can't wait to see photos!

What Matilda can do now:
She can stay awake and happy for quite a long time, watching us and listening to us.
She watches the head-lights on our wall as cars drive past, and the cat when he's around her (Black spots on white fur -purrfect!) She always turns to the light.
I swear she smiles, at least in her sleep, and can get quite a cheerful expression on her face when the occasion arises.
She can poop unassisted most of the time (YAY!)
She startles at noises, so we know she can hear fine.
She can squirm around more, and can hold her head up quite well for short periods of time.
She's developing recognisable cries to communicate different things. (Our particular favorite is one annoyed cry Peter calls "The Barking Duck" -WACK! WACK! WACK!)
I suspect she's starting to recognise the Infacol bottle ("Oooh, boobie time is coming up!") -Should I be feeling guilty about that?

And my answer to those of you who said Matilda looks like me:

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