25 May 2010

Another idiotic adventure with Ashley

Yes, yes, I am still working on my birthday party post but all the pictures are on Facebook already so hold your horses - every time I start on it, something happens to interrupt me or in this case, something FAR more interesting needs to be blogged about. Here we go ...

So, you know how sometimes you have an idea so great that you find yourself thinking, "Self, why have I never thought of this before?" Oh yeah, I had one today. Last night I missed my precious Masterchef because I wanted to watch the Lost finale with Marcel (I had already watched it in the morning because I have no self control) & I knew it was going to be a cracker of an episode because it was a celebrity chef challenge with Marion, who I chose on day 1 as the ultimate winner for this season versus Frank Camorra who was voted Melbourne's number 1 chef or something like that.

Anyhoo, I remembered that they put the episodes online so I figured I'd watch it while Ben had his nap today but then I remember the very obvious point that I have to shower & get ready while he naps or I either have to listen to him cry the whole time or I just end up grungy & gross all day & get nothing done.

Sidenote & embarrassing admission: I am incapable of properly functioning without being clean first. I honestly will not even clean our house without showering & dolling myself up first. Now you've seen me & know that me getting dolled up means a 78 step process that ends with me looking only slightly less troll-esque than when I rolled out of bed but you get the point - I consider a day without bathing as a sick day & will only leave the couch for emergencies or diaper changes.

Whatever, this is where the genius motor starts grinding away in my brain. Let's follow my logic:
Want to watch Masterchef.
Must get ready for the day.
Wait, bath?
Yes, BATH!
I don't really need to wash my hair today but I do need to shave my legs.
Hmmmm, I do have wireless internet & a laptop but where would I put it?
Oh, the hamper is the perfect height.

Cue to me sitting in the bath, shaving my legs, cheering Marion on while she's assembling chicken liver pate cornets out of brick pastry (huh?). All is going smoothly. What could wrong? I know you're imaging the obvious - bath water + laptop + Ashley = perfect klutzy storm. But no, like a terrible reality show the universe decided to go with a twist. While I'm happily engrossed with whether Frank's deep fryer will heat up in time, a FREAKING SPIDER CLIMBS OUT OF THE EDGE OF MY HAMPER & ON TO THE COMPUTER! What the what? Why????

So now I'm frozen. Moving to Australia has given me an irrational fear of spiders because all I hear is that this place has the most deadly spiders in the world. And they are all so scary looking. Well, this one was tiny & had yellow polka dots so probably not the scariest spider out there but he looked like a baby version of something terrifying. And aren't the polka dots just crafty camouflage for the deadly venom lurking inside? And my second layer of irrationality is absolutely convinced that all spiders can jump & will jump in my face like I imagine would happen in a horror movie but I don't watch horror movies because you can see how well I handle scary things.

Normally in this circumstance, my reaction would be to splash the entire bathtub worth of water on the spider while screaming like a banshee. I'm pretty sure that's what the experts would tell you to do as well. But the stupid thing was ON MY COMPUTER with Marion & Frank happily cooking behind it with no idea of the drama unfolding on my side of the screen. So I couldn't drown my computer in waves of arachno-rage & I had to be quiet lest I wake up my son in the next room. I finally picked up my towel & like the immature high school jock that I am, I furiously snapped that towel until the spider finally ran over the the top of the computer & disappeared from sight. I have no idea where he ended up because when I hotfooted out of there I didn't see him & I never turned my back to that half of the bathroom the whole time I was in there.

So I'm alive & the computer is okay, just a few water drops on it from when I tried to google the spider while still in the bathtub, paralyzed with fear. Didn't have any luck finding it so far because no one posts pictures of baby spiders. We just happen to live about 5 minutes away from the Australian Reptile Park, which produces the majority of Australia's anti-venom because they milk poisonous spiders (oh my word, what if my spider ESCAPED from them). I am very tempted to call them because they always say in their presentations that we can call & we can bring spiders in, especially the dangerous ones so they can use their venom for their milking program. I just don't want them to laugh at me when I explain the polka dots. I also do not want to do all the laundry I desperately needed to do today because there is a 99.99999% chance that the spider went back into that hamper. The hamper of doom. The hamper of terror. The hamper that probably houses an entire colony of tiny black spiders with yellow polka dots.

And now I can't figure out if I feel totally nauseated because of the spider drama or because I haven't eaten anything since the strawberry tart I made for breakfast. What? I opened the freezer & saw shortcrust pastry dough & strawberries - what would you have done?? And Ben is still asleep so I really had time to take a quick bath then watch Masterchef & none of this would have happened. Ignorance is bliss.

23 May 2010

Training Notes

I will do another blog later about Ben's birthday party, which was lovely & wonderful & I enjoyed so much. But I am currently starting sleep training with him & need your support so I don't give up! I am supposed to start with his naps so I've done our new routine of diaper change, closing the blinds, rocking & reading him a story while he has a quick feed. Now he's in his bed. Theoretically he will cry & I will go in & soothe him in a few minutes & every few minutes after that until he is fast asleep. After a few days of nap bliss we will move on to the nights & eventually Marcel & I will have our bed to ourselves & Ben won't drink all night & will eat lots & lots of real food.

Only thing is I've thrown in an idea of my own. Ben sleeps really well in the car, obviously because of the motion but when he does cry there is one instant solution. The Beach Boys. That's right, the joyous strains on Barbara Ann puts an instant end to all tantrums & he ends up drifting to sleep. Soooo, genius that I am I have created an iPod playlist of our favorite Beach Boys tunes that is now playing while he's in his crib. He's not crying - don't think he's sleeping either of course. Worst case scenario, this plan fails & he doesn't sleep & grows up to have a homicidal hatred of Brian Wilson. Best case scenario, he cries less & realises this is his sleeping music & grows up to sing perfect 4-part harmony. Which do you think is most likely?

Off to check him.

Was standing in his crib as expected. Smiling more than I expected. Laid him back down, tucked him in. He did not care for that, much crying so I soothed & sshhhh'ed & whispered my sweet motherly nothings. Coughs & noises coming from the room now makes me think he is standing back up & not focusing on nap time. Hmmm, having major doubts about Operation Good Vibrations. Not that I want him to cry but no one has ever mentioned laughing himself to sleep as an option. Oh, now there's some whining sleepy noises. Maybe I should have included more ballads in our mix but the uptempo stuff knocks him out just as well in the car. Maybe I can attach a small motor to his crib & put a dummy that looks like the back of my head in front of the crib & just recreate the entire car scenario. Ugh. This sucks.

Off to force him to lay down again & soothe as only I can (i.e. unsuccessfully)

He's really wailing now & I don't mean singing along to the strains of Little Surfer Girl. I'm not cut out for this shit. I'm distracting myself not only with this blog but also making a new IKEA shopping list (can you believe we are already returning to IKEA - we are gluttons for retail punishment) down to checking the measurements of their famed RIBBA frames & the crap I still need to frame for our walls. Details, details, details keep my mind from the fact that the little love of my life is crying his heart out through the next wall. Actually, he's not crying now. I turned the music down on my last visit so he doesn't confuse his dimmed naptime room for a dim nightclub gig where he can't figure out where the band is hiding. Do babies think of those things? Are 1 year olds babies anymore? Where's my tape measure?

He's very quiet. There's no way on earth he's asleep so my guess is he's chewing the finish off of his crib, which is one of his more delightful talents. Maybe he's meditating - nope, just heard some whining. Oh, the tape measure is hanging off the "Don't Forget" magnet on the refrigerator! Anything that says "Don't Forget" is as good as forgotten with me.

Off to soothe & lay his booty back down.

He stayed laying down as I walked out the door, which the nurse at the Family Care Cottage said would be a good sign that he's winding down. I think they would have told me that him shooting me the bird & mooning me simultaneously was a good sign because they hate me & want me to suffer through my unhappy little man's sleep issues as much as possible. He also figured out that he can reach through the crib bars & hold my leg, which set me back a few paces because it was so sweet & desperate.

Now have the things I want to get frames for & am measuring them. Marcel & I have an embarrassingly large collection of Do Not Disturb signs from our travels around the world (sidenote: we hate that these are being phased out at nicer hotels)(towels are much bulkier to steal & not so quirky). I'd love to find a way to frame & display them but I imagine that's a combination of weird & tacky that I should keep to myself.

Is Ben laughing or just making weird coughing noises in there? Sounds a little too pleasant & not sleepy enough in my opinion. And as I hear I Get Around, it is dawning on me that Operation Good Vibrations may have another dark side effect of making me hate the precious Beach Boys as well. I swear Ben just yelled something. He is getting to the point where he kinda sounds like he's talking but nothing sensical. Gibberish, I guess you would call it. Lovely, lovely gibberish. And I assume today's gibberish could be easily translated to anti-Mommy tirades & wondering if Dad will get home from work early to put a stop to my evil plan. Not going to happen, young man. Just go to sleep!

Off to visit my little prisoner. This is never going to work, is it?

Oooh, he's mad at me now. Crying loudly & muttering baby curse words, I'm sure of it. I reached the 30 minutes of him in bed mark & I don't really remember what I was supposed to do now but I think it was the big soothing one so I took him out of bed & held him, swaying back & forth. I gave him a million mini kisses on his apple cheek & nuzzled my nose into his soft curls. He stuck his finger in his nose, then promptly into his mouth. *sigh*

Hmmmm, I'm at a bit of a loss now. At the Family Care Cottage, they had me take him out at 30 minutes & feed him to sleep the way I normally do. Ya know, they WRONG way. But it seems like if I do that, that's going to put a dent in this whole plan. I think they said if he doesn't seem distressed, keep going 45 minutes but then what??? And they didn't mention how to reconfigure said plan if I were to introduce 60's surf music to the equation. They obviously weren't prepared for Operation Good Vibrations. But then no one can ever truly be ready for such a cunning & melodic plan.

He's cooing away in his room & there's some banging that he must be kicking or rattling the side of his crib. What if he busts out of there & attacks me like a toddling Hulk or something? I've got to go grab my Family Care Cottage papers to see if they mention crib break-outs. Oooh, big burp from him - now maybe he'll settle down & drift off to sleep. Schyeah right & monkeys might fly out of my butt! Must watch Wayne's World again soon to see if it stood up over time.

Hey, he was actually sitting down when I went in there this time, chewing on his blanket. We are making progress. At this rate, he should be asleep by next Tuesday I'd say. The stupid papers basically say if he's not sleeping or seems overly distressed to use an alternate method to get him to sleep then try again next sleep. THIS IS NEVER GOING TO END!!

I'm going to leave a message with the woman from The Cottage. Until then, I am picking my boy up & feeding him to sleep & silencing those bloody Beach Boys before I push Rhonda & the little Surfer Girl out the window!

I'll keep you in the loop for his next nap tomorrow (unless he miraculously goes for 2 today - hahahaha).

22 May 2010

Don't call it a comeback

My oh my, it's been a while. Ya know how people who lose their online ability or TV or whatever for a while & at the end they say "It was actually a blessing in the end - we became closer as a family & discovered our love for board games & storytelling by candlelight." They are morons. I missed you!! And all that non-internet time gave me too much time for cleaning & unpacking & other boring crap. We're desperately downloading TV shows to get caught up (thankfully Australia caught up with America's Lost schedule just in time so we're not behind there) & it will take me weeks to get caught up on all my blog reading & facebook status updates. You people have been busy little bees.

I suppose you're wondering about the house. It's lovely, wonderful & fabuloso. It's all still coming together & no one room is actually complete so we'll post some pictures as soon as we get something finished! Luckily, we did find our camera this week - right in the middle of a big box of clothes. Thank you, Benny, for that little adventure. Now we just have to hunt down the charging cord in the midst of all the other thousand cables we've got in various boxes here & there. Ugh.

Boy wonder is still wondrous. And he's now ONE!! How did that happen? His big birthday party was supposed to be last weekend but he got himself a fever so now it's tomorrow instead. I should be cleaning & grocery shopping but I'll get to that eventually. Marcel is working until late tonight, filming a concert at a church so he'll have to help me decorate the Lanai tonight or early tomorrow. So much to do, so little organized & somehow not stressed. It will bite me in the ass later, I assume!

Well, the little man is crying his head off. He's a grouch today - hungry, mad or just grumpy from his shots a few days ago. Who really knows? I know I already posted this picture to Facebook today but I love it so much! He's with Iggle Piggle from the show In the Night Garden, which he watches right before his bath & bedtime. Hilarious.

I'll update more later & let you know about his sleeping (hint: not good) & post pictures of the party & all that fun stuff. Glad to have you back in my life!