Sunday, May 30, 2010

Milk Face

*STRETCH*, originally uploaded by rcoconnell02.
This is a baby full of milk. I love this look. 

Friday, May 28, 2010

Huggies: Worst Diaper in America, or Worst Diaper Ever?

A word of warning: this blog post is about poo. If you don't want to read about poo, stop reading now. Perhaps you want to read this post instead. It contains no poo. Unlike this post, which is about poo.

Ok. I warned you. Ready?

So Nora has had some pretty epic poos in her short life. (Did I mention that this post is about poo? Well it is. SAVE YOURSELF NOW BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE.) In fact, she had one while we were in Pittsburgh, which prompted her dad to make the following post on facebook:

Ross: When she poops, we change her diaper. When she has a big poop, we change her shirt. And on certain special occasions, we change my shirt too.

Well, it turns out that was minor league stuff. Today, we hit the majors. We were out to lunch with our friend Jack. Nora was hanging out in her stroller, trying to grab her toy elephant firmly enough to put him in her mouth. Given the story arc to follow, a bit of background about Nora's stroller is probably in order: it's convertible, so at the moment it docks with her car seat and the body of the stroller is folded out flat beneath. Basically, it's a transformer.

Anyway, in the 10 minutes she was sitting there, she had what looked like a fairly major diaper blowout. The poo had exited the leg hole of the diaper, and was...well...everywhere. I blame the Huggies we had to use after running out of our usual diapers in Pittsburgh.

I took her to the bathroom and started the process of cleaning her up. It was bad, but so far, no worse than we'd seen already. Cleanup of a typical diaper blowout goes something like this:
1) Shirt off of her, stuffed in ziploc baggie
2) Swab poo off of her behind, legs, arms, back, and feet
3) Clean off the changing pad
4) Rinse cycle for the baby
5) New diaper

But at this point, I turn to the car seat, and discover that in addition to the poo on the removable pad, there is poo on the car seat itself. It looks like a small amount, so I rinse the removable pad and throw it in with the soiled shirt. I go to clean the car seat, and to my horror, discover that the poo is not confined to the surface--there is a little lake of poo, hidden away in the bowels (HA!) of the car seat itself. It was an incredibly lucky shot--straight down the seatbelt--I don't know how she managed it.

I know when I'm beat, so I dress her in her spare clothing and we head back to the house. Halfway home, I have a horrible thought--I hope the bottom of the car seat is a solid piece of plastic.

Nope. No such luck. The poo had continued down the seatbelt, out the back of the car seat, and into the bottom part of the stroller. I have no idea what the probability of that happening is, but it's got to be pretty low. God I hope it's low. I wanted to take pictures, just to document the incredible journey this poo had to take in order to get all the way from her butt, down the seatbelt, through the car seat, and out to the base of the stroller. But as my hands were covered in poo, I decided that it just wasn't worth it. You can thank me later.


A moment I desperately want to remember.

It's a warm summer evening, and the Bean and I are walking home together. The light is golden and comes in at an angle, skimming the tops of the buildings and trees. The Bean is watching the trees go by above our heads, a sparkle in her eye and a conspiratorial half-smile on her face. Her feet are resting on my hands, her toes curling and uncurling on my fingers. She uses her toes just like she uses her tongue--to investigate the world. Every once in a while, she looks up at me and grins, as if she just now remembered I was there. Hi little Bean. I love you too.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Nora is having a hard time deciding between smiling at me and chewing on her hand.

In other news, a baby smiling while trying to jam her entire fist in her mouth is pretty darn cute.

This fascination with sucking on her hands is a recent thing. She's been gaining arm control slowly over time (easily measured by the number of times she accidently whacks herself in the face), and she's been finding her hands with her mouth for a week and a half or so. But these last few days in Pittsburgh, this meeting of hand and mouth has developed from an occasional lucky coincidence to a beloved hobby, enjoyed with gusto. As I type this, she is laying in my lap, alternating between sucking on her index finger, thumb, and licking her entire fist, all accompanied by a range of enthusiastic slurping noises.

Other things she likes to suck/lick/chew on include:

*Her carrier
*Her car seat straps (I have to make sure that her chin isn't trapped in the straps when I tighten them)
*Whatever surface she's laying on
*Her arm
*My arm
*Ross's arm
*Ross's t-shirt
*My bra (there's food in there somewhere!)


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Games babies play

Nora has a game she can play with Dad. He calls it "Divebomber". It goes like this:
Dad makes a booping noise, and from a distance away, spirals in towards your nose.
When Dad gets to your nose, he beeps it!
Sometimes he waits a bit longer before beeping your nose. That's pretty funny.

Today, Nora actually added an element of her own to the game.
When Dad gets close to your nose, you turn your head to dodge the beep!
That's REALLY funny.

Local babies say "Pittsburgh Sucks!"

We're out in Pittsburgh, looking for housing. It's been hard--there isn't much available at the moment, and while the houses in Pittsburgh are beautiful, the rental housing is in universally bad repair. It's also been tough on a little Bean. She's gotten into much more of a routine in the past few weeks--she sleeps at night (though not through the night) and takes some naps during the day, with definite periods of wakefulness between--but that all goes out the window while house-hunting. The pediatrician pointed out that her best nap would probably be an hour or two after she woke up, and that's turned out to be true--we just had to know to look for it. Unfortunately, that is right around the time we need to leave in the morning to look for houses.

Cranky baby.

Then, we subject her to a long string of in and out of the and out of the baby and out of the car again. She just manages to fall asleep in the car, and then we take her out. She falls asleep in the carrier, we take her out.

Cranky cranky baby.

But all things considered, she's doing very well. She's added a Pittsburgh chapter to her growing fan club, that's for sure. And she's adjusted pretty well to the hotel room. In fact, she's advocating that we just give up on the house hunting and live in the hotel room instead.

Given the trouble we've been having, I'm tempted.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Conversations with Nora

Week 1:
BOOB BOOB Boob boob boobboobbooboooooo zzzzzzzzzzzzz
boobboobbooboooooo zzzzzzzzz


Week 4:
BOOB! BOOB! Boob Boob Boob!
Boob boob boob boob boooob booooooooooob
whiiiine CRAP! Crapcrapcrapcrapcrap! WAAAAAAAAH!
BOOB! Boob Boob Boob!


Week 8:
BOOB BOOB! Boob boobboob boob boob!
I love boob! Show me the boob!
BOOB! boob boob boob boob boob.
dah, AH!
ah! ah. aHA!
whiiiiiiine Crap! Who crapped my pants? Crap crap crap!


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cutest thing ever.

Nora has found the baby in the mirror! It makes her so happy. I'm sure that the fascination will wane, but for the moment, it's almost guaranteed to make her stop crying. I wonder if this means we should find some baby friends for her...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Likes and Dislikes

Nora loves tuvan throat music!

She also loves
  • Boob
  • David Bowie
  • The "Big Tuba" song
  • Beatles rockband
  • The bar
  • Being smiled at
  • Being on her tummy
  • Dancing with us
  • "Dancing" on her own
  • Boob
  • Pooping/peeing/barfing on Dad
  • Being tickled (though it doesn't actually seem to tickle)
  • Having her arms and legs moved around
  • Boob
  • Dad's fuzziness
  • Riding in the car
  • Riding in the stroller
  • Riding in the baby carrier
  • Looking at stuff
  • Being held
  • The magic swing
  • The vibrating chair
  • Boob
  • LaTex
  • 10-d String Theory
She hates
  • Lack of boob
  • Formula
  • Dirty diapers
  • Not looking at stuff
  • Not being held
  • Socks (apparently--she kicks them off)
  • Sleeping (sometimes)
  • Sun in her face
  • Not seeing mom or dad
  • Her hands (the bastards hit her when she's not looking!)
  • Stupid people
I think she's her daddy's girl.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Growth Spurt

A few days ago, Miss Nora Bean went through a rough patch. She was eating way more than usual (8 oz in three hours at one point!) and fussing like crazy. She also refused to sleep for more than 15 minutes at a time, and then only while being held. Given how sweet she usually is, my first thought was that someone had kidnapped my child and replaced her with some kind of wolverine/howler monkey hybrid. Fortunately, whatever was bothering her seems to have been temporary. Two days after she started fussing, she abruptly stopped, and now her smile is just as broad and lovely as it was a few days earlier.

As best we can tell, she must have been going through some kind of developmental growth spurt. New neural connection apparently take a lot out of a baby. We've seen some improvement in a couple of areas--things she'd already been doing sometimes that she now does all the time. In particular, her vision seems to have had a big jump. She loves stripes and other bold patterns, even when they're not black and white. She can track objects easily, both with her head and with her eyes alone. She seems to be able to see us from a longer distance than she could before, and she can definitely see when we're smiling at her. Her motor skills are also improving, though not as dramatically. She is still working on keeping her head up. She desperately wants more head control. Head control = baby freedom! All of this is boosted by increasing periods of alert wakefulness. She is now awake long enough that I've started to think of her as napping when she sleeps--before, she just slept all the time.

She's also grown. A lot. She's clearly turning all that milk into more baby. She's long and lean--like a string bean. A string bean with GIGANTIC feet.