Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Alice helps Daddy with his costume.



Alice herself was a puppy. We used ears that my Mom made for my sister Jesse back in our Elementary School days. I added the bows. Alice added the drool.




We also had elements of a ballerina costume and a Rastafarian hat (which is beautiful and will be used as a beret when Alice's head is bigger). The hat was crafted by our great friend Deacon Gloria and we love her for making Alice such a beautiful chapeau.
Ultimately Alice was a Ballerina-Rasta-Puppy:

Daddy's Girl


Everybody asks who Alice looks like and invariably we say she looks like me, because she does, but Alice's Great-Grandmother Bette was the first to point out, using these two photos, that Alice definitely has Tony's mouth...and possibly nose.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Can Lutherans protect us from Vampires?

Last Saturday night Tony and I were driving on a lonely back road. We were lost, it was completely dark, and the baby was dressed up like a puppy dog.

We were trying to find the Austin Zoo, which is really an animal preserve way out in the middle of nowhere in particular. The reason we were headed towards the Zoo at night was for the annual "Boo at the Zoo" celebration. It sounded like fun. Look at the animals at night. Stroll around with other costumed parents and babies in the early evening. Maybe enjoy a little adult conversation after the kid falls asleep.
Little did we know that the turn-off to our destination was going to be completely obscured by total darkness. As a family unit we were getting freaked out. Well, Alice was sleeping, but Tony and I had a strong feeling there might be zombies in our immediate future. We were stupid lost and I was trying to help Tony out by pointing out landmarks using the insufficient illumination of our headlights.

"There is a trailer that says 'Massage by Wendy' on the side."
"There is a sleeping horse."
"There is a creepy abandoned shack."
"Oh wait! I see a sign. It says, 'Holy Cross Lutheran Church'..."

At which point Tony muttered the title of this post.
Being Catholic he really would prefer a good solid Father Something or Other to handle repelling the undead. I totally agree.

We abandoned our search, picked up Indian Food, and went home to play with the baby. We will try for the Zoo again next year...in the daylight.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Tony and Alice saw "The 40 year old Virgin" last night.

video
The song is "Aquarius / Let the Sun Shine in" and it is now Alice's favorite song. But just the chorus, no other part of the song interests her.

Voting


Alice and I voted last week. I never considered the logistics of taking a baby (plus stroller) into a voting booth. It's a tight fit, but the volunteers were tremendously helpful and even entertained Alice with shiny government forms while I did my duty.

In the past I have been guilty of just voting for members of my party or for women without knowing a thing about them. Shameful. This was due to a lack of preparation on my part. But this year I was energized by the national elections and did my research. I even researched the judges by their records. Yeah. You know it. I found that my choices were much more varied in gender and party than I could have imagined last year.

The picture was taken near the huge sign on our neighbor's back fence. There are more campaign posters (for Obama, McCain, Nader, and even Ron Paul) out than Halloween decorations. I'm glad that everybody in our community seems to be shaking off apathy and declaring their intention to participate together in the democratic process.

Happy 4th Month



Our little sweetums is 4 months old today. She celebrated this milestone by getting shots at the Pediatrician's office. Alice is now old enough to be wary of the Dr's office. Who could blame the kid? She is always stripped down to a diaper in a cold strange room and then poked with needles. This visit she grabbed the Dr.'s tongue depressor and brandished it like a weapon.

Alice has all kinds of new tricks these days. She can roll over with extreme prejudice. She has special distinct grins for Daddy and Mommy. She consistantly says her name ("Ally") a greeting ("Hi") and the phrase that comes after Storytime ("the end"). She enjoys eating not just for sustenance but for the joy of consuming her favorite meal (wait until she understands the concept of variety).

As a result breastfeeding sessions usually go like this:

Alice, sleeps peacefully on her favorite napping spot (Tony).
Alice suddenly wakes!
Alice picks up her wobbly head and looks deeply into Daddy's eyes,
Alice gives him the ole' gummy grin.
Alice flips herself off of Daddy and rolls onto her tummy
Alice scans the room for food.
Alice spots Mommy and scrunches her diapered butt into the air.
Alice suddenly lunges at Mommy's shirt screaming, "ALLY-HI!"
After the meal Alice gives me a grateful smile and says "the end".
(or "grrraraaablllaggaaa" depending on her mood).

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Alice, click your heels three times

One of Tony's friends at work is a dance instructor and she gave Alice these lovely golden dance shoes. We always thought that Alice would wear them sometime around her first birthday or at very least at the six-month mark around Christmas. Alas, our little pumpkin already has feet big enough to barely fit into her dancing shoes. The time for dancing is now!

Here she is in her newly shod finery:



Thank you Shelli!!

I get jokes

The night Tony came home from Florida we were having a little family time with Alice sitting on her daddy's lap. Tony and I were a little slap-happy (it being midnight) and we started a round of raucous laughter at some lame joke. Suddenly we heard a screechy "Hee-Haw" wheezing sound coming from our daughter. We both looked at her concerned that she might be hurt but the kid was smiling like a loony bird. Tony grinned and said, "Are you trying to laugh sweetheart?"
Alice said "SCREAM squeek hoot snort burble RARWHAH!"

Since then Tony has been working on Alice's "laugh" by saying "Come on honey, Give me a Laugh."
Tonight all his hard work was rewarded. Check it out.

video

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Casa de Luz


(note: This is not my photo. It can be found on the Casa de Luz website)

Today Alice and I had a lunch date with my friend Krishna and her baby girl Lilly. Krishna and I met in a Mom and Baby group and she was very helpful in helping me to prepare for Tony's first trip away from Alice. Her most helpful suggestion was to fill the weekend before he left with nothing but family time.

One of the things Krishna helped me do today is get out of the frickin' house!
The place where we ate lunch was an interesting school/vegan restaurant/yoga studio/lots of other stuff. It seems to be a community of folks that like hanging out under trees drinking tea, watching the kids play, and eating lunch, and I am totally down with that.
The place was called Casa de Luz and it was really lovely. Alice is not fond of sitting in her carseat for long periods of non-driving time, so she sat in my lap and goggled at the older kids scrambling all over the playground. It was great getting to just sit with another adult and talk about baby (and non-baby) stuff. I think we freaked out our fellow diners when we roamed onto the topic of amniotic fluid. But they were talking politics, which is marginally more unappetizing.
The deal with Casa de Luz is that you pay $12 for two helpings of whatever vegan meal they are making that day, plus soup, salad, and free drinks. It was a very satisfying experience.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

We live next to the House of Torment...owner


One of our neighbors owns the sixth best haunted house in the nation. We're new to the community so we haven't had a chance to get to know the guy but he seems really nice. He's got cute kids. His yard looks good. Oh, and he has a hearse parked out front.

The picture up above is not of his house. We took this photo on a walk in another neighborhood. I thought it probably wasn't cool to post pictures of the man's domicile. But I will post links to these great videos of what it takes to spend all year creating the most incredible Halloween experience in Texas. What a great job.

Baldy McNohair

Alice and I are hanging out alone this week while Tony is at a conference in Florida. Yesterday we went to the Library, the organic market, the park, and took a big girl bath. Today we napped.
The only effort we took this afternoon was for a hearty round of "Tummy Time".



As I rounded the baby I got this shot of Alice's growing bald patch. She has passed "puppy with mange" and moved on to "fraternity prank victim".

Alice is a happy baby and when she wakes up in the morning she whips her head from side to side yaulping with joy. Thus the stripe of obliterated fine baby hair.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

freaking roach

Ok it is about 4:50am right now. Alice and I are getting ready to take Tony to the airport for a business trip. I am totally awake because at 4:20am a FREAKING ROACH ran across my face. It has been raining outside all night. This is the first rain we have had in months. So critters are inevitable in our circa 1984 non-hermetically sealed house. In Texas people call these creepy crawlies "water bugs" but when I woke to scratchy legs scrabbling over my cheek my first thought was:
"Did it get on the Baby?" and "That was definitely a Roach".

I waited until the alarm went off at 4:30 to tell Tony, "Funny story sweetie..."
He went "Ewwwww!" and let me use the bathroom first while he snoozed with Alice.
When I emerged from the bathroom I said "Another funny story sweetie, the roach just ran across my foot."

Tony said, "He's a Dead Man. Kafka be dammed."
My Hero.

That Roach is totally dead now ya'll.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Au contraire girl with no hair

Alice favors sleeping with her head turned to one side. We try to dissuade favoritism by flipping her around at night, but she really rejects coequality.
Now our precious redhead has a large bald patch on one side. In an added twist my pregnancy hormones have faded and my hair is also falling out. Only Tony's pillow remains fur free.
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