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7/27/11
Surfing on Brain Waves in the Baby Pool

It's official! ZB has brain waves! This is the EEG cap that she wore today during a psych research experiment at the University of Tennessee's Neuroscience Lab. We were asked to be part of an experiment to study infant recognition, and I thought, Why not? It isn't every day you get to have your brain waves measured. (Well, we don't anyway...I can't really speak for what goes on at your crazy cocktail parties).

Anyway, they put the cap on ZB and showed her a video clip of a woman talking. Then they showed the same clip over and over and over. When she would get bored or distracted and look away, they'd cut to clips of Sesame street until she looked back at the screen, then go back to the clip of the woman. (I'm not sure what ZB's brain waves were doing during all of this, but after listening to the same 3 second clip of the woman for the 1000th time, my brain waves shut down completely). I was actually giddy with relief whenever ZB would turn her head and trigger a clip of Ernie singing "Rubber Ducky, you're the one".

Honestly, I think ZB was most interested in the tiny cape (think the ones that salons put on you for hair cuts) that they made her wear so that she wouldn't reach up and mess with the sensor wires. Woman on the screen? Pah. Dancing puppets? Eh. Momma bleeding from the ears after listening to the same clip over and over again? Nada. But a little black cape that covers her arms? Baby jackpot!

So that was our fun outing for the day. We made some grad students happy, and ZB got to play with a cape. And I got this hysterical picture:
More ammunition to mortify her with when she decides to start dating...

7/14/11
Think Twice Before Coming Between A Woman and Her Doctor

I'm sure by now you've heard about the thing Netflix is doing with the whole charging for DVDs and streaming separately? You used to be able to get the DVDs and streaming together for one low price, but as of September 1st, Netflix is charging for each service separately. Well, Tony and I were talking about it when we heard the news, and after tsk-tsking at the extreme selfishness of Netflix, Tony was like, "Well we don't use both DVDs and streaming enough to warrant paying for both of them. It's obvious which one we should keep". And I was all, "Exactly. The streaming". Only at the exact same time I said streaming, he said "The DVDs". And then we both stared at each other in horror.

Here's the thing. Tony likes to watch movies. He has an entire queue set up with movies that he wants to watch. I however, like the streaming. I rarely have time to watch an entire movie what with the baby needing near-constant attention, so I use the streaming to watch tv shows like Dr. Who and Numbers and Firefly and Wings (and yes, MacGyver). And in the event that I do find myself with 2 hours of free time, I need a movie right that second, not three days from now. So I want the streaming. Only he pointed out that the new movies almost never go to streaming...you can only get them on DVD. And then I pointed out that if he really wanted a movie, he could get it at redbox for $1, but where was I supposed to find the past 50 years of Dr. Who? And he said that I could probably find them online somewhere, and then I pointed out that if I did that, I'd have to watch them in Chinese with translations, and not to mention the computer viruses that those sites hit you with, and by the way he only watches 4 or 5 movies a month anyway, so it'd be a much better value just to get the streaming. And he was like, "why should I pay for each movie at Redbox when I can get unlimited number of movies for roughly the same price? And besides, Doctor Who is dumb". And then I was like, "OH NO YOU DIDN'T!! NOBODY BASHES DOCTOR WHO!" And, well, let's just say the conversation deteriorated from there.

So we're at kind of a stale-mate at the moment. We're both frantically trying to get through as many of our shows/movies as possible before the September 1st deadline. And yes, we could just pay the extra $8 a month or whatever and keep both, but that's just letting Netflix win.

Anybody else trying to decide what to do about Netflix? Do you have any suggestions? Be sure to leave a comment if you agree with me. If not, then please take a moment to re-examine your motives and ask yourself why it is exactly that you hate good programming, you anti-Whoite.

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In other news, our garbage disposal is broken. Apparently, one of ZB's baby washcloths fell down the disposal and got shredded into tiny pieces, which then fatally wrapped themselves around the blades and the whole thing went kaput. (Who knew baby washcloths were so dangerous? They are the kryptonite of disposals). And since I'm the one who regularly "fixes" the disposal (read: knows where the reset button is located), Tony has decided I'm in charge of finding a new one. So here I am last night, doing an internet search on the benefits of In-sink-erator vs Kenmore vs Waste King when I come across this late-breaking news story about the woman who cut of her husband's, er, man-part and dropped it down the disposal. I'm reading the article out loud to Tony when I suddenly get the giggles. I don't know why. Surely such a crime is no laughing matter, but I just can't help it. It's like laughing at a funeral. You know you shouldn't but you just can't seem to stop. (And in my defense, the victim did refuse to comment, siting that the whole thing was a "private" matter. I mean, c'mon!) Anyway, I'm laughing, and Tony is looking rather disturbed and telling me that such things are not funny, which only makes me laugh harder. Long story short, my husband now thinks I am a crazy woman who thinks that dropping man-parts down the garbage disposal is hilarious.

But on the bright side, I don't think he'll be trying to take away my Dr. Who any time soon.

7/13/11
Four Months and the Living is Easy...Except for Maybe Rice Cereal

Look who is 4 months old now! She babbles! She sits with support! She smiles and laughs at everyone! And she's gorgeous.



Plus we've just started rice cereal, and consider ZB's MIND ABSOLUTELY BLOWN. We weren't sure how to feel about semi-solid foods at first, but I think that by the end of it she was getting the hang of things:




video



7/14/11 Update about the rice cereal: Apparently it is EVIL! Sure, it seems innocent enough going in, cute even, but it is far from cute on the way out! I just changed ZB's diaper, and let's just say the rice cereal was not kind! Not at all! She didn't seem bothered by it, but my eyes watered and all my nose hair fell out and paint started peeling off of the walls. (Somewhere in the back of my mind, I seem to recall that people mentioned that solid foods would summon the stinky poos, but OH MY WORD! This is not just a stinky poo! This needs to come with a warning label! This causes cancer in California! )

To recap: Rice is not obviously ZB's friend. Solid food is highly overrated. And my new plan is to keep her on breast milk until she is potty trained and able to take care of such things on her own. Sweet Mercy!

7/9/11
The Crib

It's a milestone event tonight. ZB doesn't know it yet, but she is officially moving out of the cradle next to our bed and into her crib in her own room.

It is long overdue, too. Other moms on the BabyCenter board that I follow started transferring to cribs at about two months, but I told myself that she was waaaay too young to be all the way across the hall. She felt secure having us so close, and besides, I liked to wake up throughout the night to check on her.

I probably should have moved her at three months when she started getting too big for the cradle. She likes to flail around when she sleeps, and she was banging her little arms against the sides. So I should have moved her then, but she was still waking up several times a night to eat, and it's just so much easier to pick her up and put her in the big bed next to me to nurse than to get up and go across the hall to her room.

I should have moved her when she cut out most of her night feedings and started sleeping in 6 or 8 hour stretches a few weeks ago. There was no reason for her to still be crammed in that little tiny cradle, and it wasn't like she needed me to be right there. But we were going to Chicago for the 4th of July weekend, and I told myself that it would confuse her to move her to the crib and then take her to a strange bed in Chicago and then come back to try the crib thing again. It wouldn't hurt to wait until after the 4th, right?

And so then we came back from Chicago and I stuffed her back in her little shoebox cradle next to the bed, and curled up to watch her and just listen to her breathe, like I do every night. Only this time, she was like, "Look Mom. We need to talk about this cradle thing. I'm a big girl now, and I need a big girl crib in my own room. I've been patient while you adjust to the idea of me sleeping across the hall instead of a foot and a half away, but enough is enough. Besides...Dad snores like a chainsaw". And to make sure that I got the point, she proceeded to keep me up all night with her kicking and flailing.

So here we are. Earlier today I moved her white noise machine and oscillating fan and movement monitor into her nursery. Then I put her mattress pad protector and fresh sheets in the crib. I moved her cradle from next to my side of the bed to the corner so that we could put it in the attic later.

Then I cried.

It's silly, I know. It isn't like she's moving across the country or leaving for college or anything. She's 15 feet away for Pete's sake. But still. 15 feet seems really really big when you're only 23 inches long. (Or to be honest, when you're 5' 8" and your heart is only 23" long and 15' away). But I kept telling myself that she NEEDED this, and she's sleep better with the quiet and the extra room and I was not so selfish as to deny my child something she needed just so I could lay in my bed and watch her little chest rise and fall while she slept. Putting it like that made me feel better.

Almost.

So here she is, drinking her evening bottle and getting drowsy. She's falling asleep in Tony's arms while he feeds her, and now he's carrying her up to her room and putting her in the crib. He's turning on the monitor and the white noise, giving her a kiss and turning off the light.

Here I am standing at the door of her room, straining to see her little form sleeping peacefully in the darkness. Listening to the sound of her tiny baby snores though the monitor instead of in person, and watching the little green light blink on the motion monitor that registers her breathing (I deliberately placed the monitor so that I can see that green light blink while I lie in my bed...that little green light is my sanity, and the reason that I'm not in there sleeping on the floor with one hand wedged through the crib bars right now).

And here she is at 6am, safely through the night and wanting her breakfast. I went to get her and she smiled when she saw me, no feelings of abandonment or isolation like I had imagined. No years of therapy needed for either of us. She had some milk and even though I wanted to snuggle with her in our bed, I took her back to the crib when she fell asleep again. Might as well equate sleeping time with crib time. We'll both appreciate that in the long run. (I did, however, get my snuggle time at 8am when she woke up for the day. It was a celebratory snuggle because all three of us had a good night's sleep for once).

So here we are...a big girl who sleeps in her big girl crib, a mommy who learned to let go just a teeny little bit, and a Daddy who still snores like a chainsaw, but with only half an audience now.

Quite the milestone indeed.