Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The lawn

It looks less like "The Shining" in real life.

We've hit this season's first cold snap and judging by the looks of things, it's going to be a long winter. Combine one tiny apartment with one increasingly gigantic (not to mention mobile) toddler and you've got a recipe for the yells. It's like clockwork - at 5:30 am (4:50 this morning. Don't get me started) kiddo wakes up, calls for mama, and then immediately starts reaching for the window. "Da! Da!" (Translation: "That! That!' Translastion: "If I don't get outside in - checks imaginary baby watch - 10 minutes, your goose is cooked, mother. Don't try to distract me with "bottles" and "cuddling". That stuff may have worked when I was an infant but I am older and wiser and want to go outside now. I know it's still dark! Don't patronize me, woman! I'm simply stating that if you don't take me outside right this very minute I will reach for the window and sob and whine until you do. I will smile and coo and play cute if I have to but I will not, not, not stay inside - DON'T PUT ME ON MY SQUISHY FLOOR! I DON'T WANT TO PLAY ON THE SQUISHY FLOOR! - I will not stay inside for one more minute! I want out! Nooooow!")

Seriously, he says that. It's subtle but it's there.

Because I don't happen to want to haul my hoary, half-asleep ass outside, we've agreed to a compromise: the hall. (Don't worry, neighbors. I keep him indoors until at least 9.) That's right, the hall. Or as I like to call it, "the lawn". It's actually sort of a thing in our building, letting your child play in the halls. (I remember listening to the neighbor kids playing catch with their dad, their hyperactive golden retriever - is there any other kind? - having a superfreak when he didn't get the ball.) Yesterday we set up a makeshift jam session by the elevators. He played the formula can (a free sample from yesterday's mail) while I rocked a pediatrician bill. Baby feels like he's gone somewhere, I'm still warm - it's perfect. Plus they clean the hallways every week which is more than I can say for the playground.

In other 10-monthy news, the boy has discovered his ability to pronounce his F's and has spent every waking moment (the ones where he's not reaching for the window) practicing them. It sounds like a leaky air mattress around here. We also had our first sickness. Low-grade fever and general ick for the past few days. Needless to say, it cinched my decision to do the flu shot. Well, it cinched my decision to flu shot my husband and the kid - jury's still out on me. (For a needle phobic who's still emotionally traumatized from the machete-sized number that was stuck in my back 10 months ago, having to get a flu shot seems unfair. That epidural should have counted for every shot I'll ever need, ever.) We also have a new favorite game. The boy hands me a toy, I say thank you, he tosses it over his shoulder. He hands me another toy, I say thank you, he tosses it over his shoulder. He hand me another toy, I say thank you, he tosses it over his shoulder. He hands me another toy, I say thank you, he tosses it over his shoulder. He hands me another toy, I say thank you, he tosses it over his shoulder.

Trust me, typing that was way less repetitive than the actual game.

Finally, in an attempt to save cash in these tough economic times I've started to try to stretch our once weekly grocery shop to three. It hasn't been what one might call a raging success. For dinner last night I had a stale spinach tortilla topped with some leftover baby food.

I wish I was kidding.

It is scroungy around here, peeps. Tonight I'm having chicken stock and a roll. Perhaps it's time to re-think...

On an unrelated note, do complete strangers often ask you if you're going to have more kids? This has been happening a lot lately and I'm not sure what to say. It's not that I'm a particularly private person (please) nor do I have a problem discussing this subject with friends. Hell, I've asked the same question to almost everyone I know. But it's weirder when it's coming from a shop clerk. I'm never sure whether to be honest or snarky or obtuse so I usually just end up turning the question on them and agreeing with whatever they say. Because the truth is, I have no idea. And even if I had an idea, at this point nature has more say about it than I do. Anyone else?


EBPitcher said...

The mail man asks me all the time if I'll have another. He says I need a girl since I already ahve a boy. "Not really", I tell him. I usually just ignore everyone else's opinion since they aren't the one to be doing the birthin'.

Ali said...

What's up with people insisting that you need a boy AND a girl?! That's double the toys, double the un-pass-downable clothing... I don't get it.

Bern said...

Cause it is really cool having one of each. Of course I haven't had two of one, so I can't speak for that.

Ali said...

Don't get me wrong, if you HAPPEN to have both it's one thing, but it's the insisting that you have to gets me. I'm totally about having one of each - if we choose to adopt, we'll adopt a girl - but it's the insisting that you HAVE to have more than one that riles me.

Missy said...

That used to piss me off too. People have gotten down right insistent that my husband "needs" a boy, and were shocked when I told them that one of the first things he said when I found out I was pregnant with our second was "I hope we have another girl." People can be rude and ignorant. My vote is ignore the question completely. Or threaten to tell them your birth story.

elisava said...

tell them (in a hushed, confidental just-for-you-nosy-stranger voice)that during your last safari to africa, you were just in the middle of getting a hippo dung facial when you had your uterus ripped out by a tiger. if they have a reply to that, i'd personally love to hear it.


filthEdesign said... think "thank you-toss the toy" is a tedious game - just wait till he gets into pokemon! lol :) i've played more pokemon than any grown woman should...and i still don't know if there's really a game in there!

he's outgrown pokemon now though and plays the "i'd rather listen to my ipod than talk to my mom" maybe i should have embraced it more??? :)

Woman with a Hatchet said...

"Everyone" looks on it as symmetry. You MUST have one of each or the Earth will be flung out of balance!

And "everyone" will keep asking you until you produce another child of the opposite sex. If you happen to produce a same sex child, they will then start giving you the hairy eyeball and ask if you're still trying for that elusive opposite sex. Then if you go on to a third child, they will all KNOW that you were just fishing for the opposite sex child. And if they're all boys?

They'll eat you out of house and home by the time they're 12.

The more important question is this: what did Wil go as on Halloween?!