September 26, 2012
Our little walker and explorer turned 10-months. That’s double-digits, folks.
September has been the most eventful month for Mara yet. First walk around the neighborhood, first sweet potato fries, and first…tiny, yet dreadful accident. Mara is completely fine now, but we had a scary moment last week where she wedged her chin and bottom teeth against her push-toy and got stuck. In the process (or mistake) of picking her up, her poor teeth snagged against the wood something awful and she suffered a laceration down her gum, almost down to the root of a baby tooth. There was blood. Lots of blood. Coming out of my baby’s — my BABY’S — mouth. In the most intense moment, a pragmatic, almost clinical part of me switched on, zeroing out my distress and panic. This was strange, because I happen to be very good at distress and panic. Remember how useless and grating Shannon was right after the plane crashed down on LOST? That could be me. But I remember silently coaching myself; Grab a towel, stop the bleeding. Is it her mouth? It’s her gums. Find your phone. Call the doctor. Get Dax in the car. When I recalled the story for Ryan later that night, it all finally sank in. I cried, hating myself for not preventing Mara’s accident and because her suffering is a tacit admission of my failure as a protector, nurturer, and mother. FAILURE. I asked Ryan to banish the toy for me because I can’t abide its presence. Dramatic, who? Me?
Mara’s injury was enough for her doctor to send us to the dentist, concerns being possible discoloration of her tooth, of it falling out completely, infection, rot, or damage to her permanent teeth below. Some pain reliever helped Mara feel comfortable the night of, and by the next day she was back to her usual self aside from bruising along her gum and the cut of course. After an exam and x-ray today, the dentist thinks Mara will be fine and that her two teeth will firm up in her gum. But the operative word here is ‘think’ since the healing process will be slow going. Wait and see is all we can do right now.
September 19, 2012
The boys and I worked on this DIY marble ramp as an easy after-school-project. It may not be the prettiest project we’ve come up with, but the boys (mostly my almost 7-year-old) were engrossed and I didn’t hear “I’m bored, mom!” once today. To make your own, all you need are cardboard tubes from paper towel or toilet paper rolls, a hole punch, pegboard, metal brads (the kind that holds papers together), a paper cup, and acrylic paints. And of course, marbles!
We painted the rolls earlier this week so they’d be nice and dry before assembly. The layer of paint helps stiffen the cardboard a bit, making it sturdier. After splitting some of the tubes down the middle (you may want to keep a few intact to make ‘tunnels’), we hole punched along the edge, spacing the holes so they align with the pegboard. Kai figured out that punching as he was assembling was easiest for him. Thread metal brads through the tubes and pegboard to attach. Our board leaned up against the wall so the boys could reach around the back to fold out the brads.
You may need to squeeze the tubes to make them nice and concave, especially if they keep getting flattened by a baby. Madness. Catch the marble in a paper cup attached at the very bottom of the ramp.
The neat thing about using metal brads is that you can disassemble the ramp to come up with new configurations. Also makes it easy to fix any mistakes and extreme angles that send your marble flying off course.
I can see us experimenting by adding obstacles, trap doors, and bells that the marbles can bump into. My kids love Japanese Rube Goldberg Machines so our simple ramp is a great segue to more sophisticated designs!
September 3, 2012
I recently tried out a new medium, some Sculpey clay, and this Polaroid charm was the result. You can find full instructions at Dotcoms for Moms.
You may notice that the package of clay in the tutorial photograph is smashed, thanks to a tactical strike on Mara’s part. While shopping for clay at the craft store, I had Mara in my Babyhawk, placing her in prime position to grab the Sculpey out of my hands and aim it straight into her mouth. After pulling it and some slobber out, I turn around to find Dax with a clay package in his mouth. As I’m reprimanding him, boggled as to why my 4-year-old would be uncharacteristically mouthing random objects at the store and setting off all my germ alerts, I turn to see Kai with a clay package in HIS mouth. Classic monkey-see, monkey-do. I’m just glad we had the aisle to ourselves — no one to catch the frazzled mother hissing at her children to not eat the clay.
September 2, 2012
Crawling was so yesterday. Literally! While Mara had taken her very first baby steps a couple weeks ago, she decided today that bipedalism is fun and where it’s at. This afternoon, we lured her across the room with a random globe on the ground. Baby girl never ceases to amaze me.
And in other happy news, school started for the boys! Summer was fun and lazy but we’re all excited about the new school year, especially this child. And you bet there was some crude conversation between the boys leading up to this moment.
August 26, 2012
I tried a ponytail on Mara the other day and just about died from cuteness sensory overload. The five minutes of cajoling and chasing and trying to clip her hair just-so was totally worth it. My fun girl also turned 9 mos recently AND took her first steps. For the most part, she is a very happy crawler and is taking her time with walking. GREAT. It’s the climbing that’s nerve-wracking for me.
When I’m not chasing Mara down or recovering from my efforts (baby = exhaustion), I still try to work on projects with the boys. The latest is this very cool bow and arrow DIY. Do you like the quiver DIY by my kids? Step 1: Slide arrow down the back of your shirt.
We took our “archery gear” to the park on Saturday, and I’m not kidding you, kids flocked to us like we were the Pied Piper but without lute music and deaths. As non-threatening as we were, it felt like we were babysitting stranger’s kids while they enjoyed their bbq because where were the parents?! The kids were very sweet and polite, but preschool young…and without parents! And it was a big playground. At one point (the point when I started to smell bbq seafood) I half-jokingly asked one of the kids to grab me a plate of food. No dice, because he told me to get my own food, ha.