Monday, August 25, 2008


Don't touch that dial! While you may have been watching the Olympics (and let's be truthful, I wish I had watched them too - despite the drug scandals and intimations of underage Chinese gymnasts, I still get sucked in by the idealistic promise of a contest among beautiful youthful athletes in their prime) I have been glued to channel WKAI, with its 24-hour programming on no particular schedule, for the past six weeks. Computer? Computer who? I'm lucky if I get to check my email once every couple days, let alone frequent my old internet haunts, the blog circuit and Flickr. It's hard to type when you're nursing anyway. Ditto taking pictures.

It's not that I haven't been thinking about posting, or even composing posts in my head. After all, I don't keep a paper journal anymore, so this is the closest I come to fulfilling my compulsion to document my life (that, and the calendar that J fills in every night before bed, recording our daily activities. We've got seven years so far! But that's pretty cursory, and this, fairly discursive). One of those unrealized posts was called "breastmilk and saltines." That was the week that Iris fell victim to a nasty stomach bug and was unable to keep anything, not a drop of water nor crumb of cracker, down. Poor kid. Thank goodness (a) that is now firmly in the past, and (b) I didn't catch it too, because I don't know how I would have coordinated round-the-clock nursing and throwing up.

But it's all good. Kai is a little dreamboat. Doesn't cry much, easy to soothe when he does. Likes things that rhyme with "ing": the swing, the sling, and sing(ing). Oh, and have I mentioned that Kai coos and smiles? I could pass out from the breathy, gummy joy of it.

Having a summer baby has been nice. Not only do we log lots of time on the porch swing, we have interrupted our regular programming on a few occasions to go to the zoo, Idlewild, and some low-key picnics and parties. As long as there's shade, a bench for nursing, and another grown-up to hang with Iris so that she doesn't have to be tethered to me while Kai indulges in one of his epic feeds, we're good.

I should have said this right off the bat, but: thank you for all the lovely comments you sent when Kai was born! People have been so kind. Almost everyone who has brought or sent a baby gift for Kai has included a big sister present for Iris, too. One faraway family friend, ignorant of the fact that my girl has worn nothing but dresses and skirts since she was 2 1/2, sent her shorts that she actually wore. Twice. Then she found some other shorts in her dresser and wore them, too. A short-lived experiment (no pun intended) or a wardrobe breakthrough? We shall see.

We have even had a bit of anthroposophy in our lives. Yes, Iris will be starting the Waldorf School in the fall – that is, in a little over a week – and our August schedule has been full of teacher home visits, get-acquainted picnics, and new parent orientations. I am impressed by the effort the school puts into forging relationships with and among its families, and so far that and the truly wonderful early childhood play yard – no plastic play equipment, just landscaping and homemade wooden features like a sandbox and playhouse as backdrop for imaginative games – have formed a positive impression that outweighs the oddity of the choral reading of a "verse" from Rudolf Steiner at the closing of parent orientation.

Myself, I have no verse to close with, so I'll just say: This is WKAI signing off for now.