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Thursday, 16 February 2012


Adrienne has always enjoyed her bath, but ever since we have been in Idaho she is taking that up a notch. She is drawn to the bath like a moth to the flame--in an irresistible, incessant, borderline obsessive manner. It shouldn't come as too much of a surprise that she likes the bath so much here because it allows her to be naked (her current favorite state) and she feels 'nice and warm' (as she likes to describe it). In theory, I am a supporter of this new-found love: She uses her imagination, she has individual play, she has totally mastered the bath puzzles in just a few days, and on top of all that, she gets CLEAN. In reality, however, there is only so much time that you can spend in the bathroom before you get bored or uncomfortable or both. Because these are not your average 20 minute baths we are taking about. These are 60 minutes....90 minutes....120 minutes.... probably longer if you would let her. The other day I was watching her in the bath and my dad had to relieve me for a lunch break. I think that was the slowest I have ever eaten a turkey sandwich. Which is really at the root of the problem with this hobby--she has to be attended at all times. Even if I sneak out for a few minutes to start the laundry (or see whats happening on the TV, more likely), I am terrified that she is going to drown in the moments I am away. She loves the bath so much that we have taken to spelling the word out instead of using it openly--on par with C-A-N-D-Y. The fear is that mentioning 'bath' will pique her ears and doom you to an evening perched on the side of the tub. We joke about whose turn it is to bathe Adrienne at night yet when the time comes everyone seems awfully busy with other things. I think soon we are going to start drawing straws and the one with the shortest gets stuck with the bath chore. On the plus side, with all this idle time in the bathroom, I am getting much better at my iPad scrabble and have started playing with my new zoom lens.     

After about an hour or so of this, I started to try to lure Adrienne out with promises of good things outside the tub. After a few failed attempts, I pulled out the big guns. I offered her a bowl of ice-cream in front of the TV while watching Peppa Pig. She thought about it for a bit, then said, "Um, No Thank-you, Mommy!' See, I tried being nice. This is what happens when you have finally had enough of the bath for the night and literally pull the plug on it.  Oh, the injustice of it all!

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Nate's Baptism

            One of the most important things we have done since we got home was baptize our son. Ever since Nate was born, I have been thinking about when and where to do the baptism. With Adrienne, we chose to baptize her in Singapore during my parents visit. It was a lovely day but we were sorry that so much of our family was unable to be there. I really wanted more family to be present at Nate's baptism but didn't want to wait for the undetermined time that we move back stateside. Fortuitously, once we decided to come home for a visit, it seemed the obvious time to welcome Nate to the fold. 
           Thanks to the coordinating efforts of Regis' sister and likely many years of generous donations from Regis' parents, we were able to plan a baptism at the church where Regis was baptized oh so long ago: St. Raymond's Catholic Church in Mt. Prospect. Nate wore the baptism gown that I wore to my baptism oh so many years ago (and which my siblings and Adrienne also wore, made from my mother's wedding gown). I really liked the way this turned out-- historic and symbolic and familial, like baptism itself. The sacrament of baptism itself was very special. This was due in part, oddly enough, to the Superbowl. As it turns out, not very many people like to spend Superbowl Sunday at the church baptizing their babies. This meant that we had a solo-baptism and allowed it to be more personal to Nate and our family. Miracle upon miracle, Nate was just a little angel through the nearly hour-long ceremony (Isn't there an unwritten rule that babies should cry loudly during their baptism? No? Oh. I guess Adrienne didn't get the memo for hers). Nate slept through the entire thing--from kisses and crosses from everyone, through the washing with water, to the anointing with oil--an absolute angel, I tell you. 
          But the best part, truly, was to be able to share this day with so many family and friends. Although we have gained much as well, there are so many things that I feel we have missed out on living abroad. In particular, having kids abroad. I had always imagined having kids much like the movies, with family members pacing the hospital halls, pink or blue balloons, and cigars to welcome the new baby. For our kids, it was just us. Don't get me wrong, it was powerful and intimate, but we are part of a larger family that could only celebrate in spirit. That is why I found this occasion very special. As Ignatius was welcomed into the Church, we could celebrate this birth with our  larger community of family and friends. So a heartfelt thank-you to all of you who were able to be with us and make this day extra special for us. 

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Greetings from the USA

Greetings from the USA! This is, um, only like 3 weeks late. If you happened to have read my last post, you may have been anxiously awaiting the outcome of our 22 hour flight with 2 babies in tow. Well, in short, we survived it. I have kind of blocked it out of my memory as people often do with traumatic experiences and thus the gory details will not be rehashed in this space. Or at least for now until the memory is recovered in psychotherapy or something. However, should you ever find yourself in this situation of doing a cross-globe traverse with little people, I would give you the simple advice of setting your expectations REALLY low. That way you may find that the trip either 1. meets your expectations or 2. that you are pleasantly surprised. This little trick really worked for me. That, and also a few free mini-bottles of wine.

So I have been meaning to get back on this blog and update but the past 3 weeks have been packed and have flown by. This has given me the feeling of falling behind. Which is crazy since this is just a hobby of mine, but I have a hard time shaking the response created by the many, many, many years I spent in school. Thinking of all the work it will be to catch up has been causing me mild anxiety and as a result I have been procrastinating getting started (coping mechanisms also learned from the years in school). I think after all this time, I should have a good story to kick off with. But I don't really, so I'll just tell you in short what the past 3 weeks have been like and I'll fill you in on the some more fun details later. As brief as I can be, here it is: Visiting Family, Eating, Fighting Jetlag, Visiting Friends, Shopping, More Eating, More Visiting Family, Finally Getting over the Jetlag, and More Eating. I tell you all this eating cannot be good for my post-pregnancy body.

Oh, and one time it snowed. I'm not sure Adrienne showed the enthusiasm we were hoping for with her first snow experience, but she did begrudgingly play along for a bit for a photo opp.