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This looks like a handy book. The reviews are extra fun ("you'll smell, literally, like a wet dog. please stop").


Coast Guard boat attacking some big-ass waves in Oregon.






Thursday, December 22, 2005

Riley has been a fairly easy baby. He didn't have colic, started sleeping through the night in early October, and - knock wood - has yet to flatten our household by succumbing to a cold. All the books say that if your child is a super fussy newborn, things should start getting better around 4 months. I figured since Riley was already so low-maintenance, at four months he'd be cooking us bacon in the mornings. "Mother? Father?" he'd squeak from the kitchen. "Extra crispy today?"

Well, as it turns out, the more control the boy has over his limbs and lungs, the more interested he seems to be in expressing his feelings through a high-pitched shriek that can be heard by wild dogs in Zimbabwe. The first time he unleashed his Edvard Munch cry-bomb we completely freaked out and twirled his body like a rotisserie chicken, looking for the serrated knife that was surely plunged into his delicate baby parts. We practically howled along with him: "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

Now that we've experienced what we call Hurricane Riley about, oh, EIGHT MILLION TIMES, we just roll our eyes and go through the various routines: jiggling, rocking, slapping singing. It's extra fun to try and get him to eat when he's in this mood since his mouth is a gaping maw of evil from which blue flames explode in ten-foot bursts, but usually a meal or a nap snaps him out of it and *blip* there's our adorable marzipan baby again.

When we were in Coos Bay over the weekend people kept simpering over him and saying what a sweet child he was and aw, doesn't he just have the best temperament? While normally JB and I soak up baby-related compliments like prideful sponges, on this particular topic we want others to taste our pain. "You don't understand," we said, eyeing our child as though a live grenade was lying there batting its eyelashes. "Come back in a couple hours."

The first explosion definitely took JB's mother by surprise. She experienced the Ouroboros Feeding Hell, where he starts screaming because he's hungry, so you get a bottle in his mouth, then he drinks too fast and chokes on it, and then - ohhhh, and then things really get going. The Feeding Hell has generated enough wailing to alter the flightpaths of domestic 747s.

Overall, I am really, really grateful that if we had to breed a tiny human foghorn, I'm glad he gave me a few months to get up to speed before unveiling the true nature of his personality. And maybe this is a stage! Wasn't that in the What To Expect book, the four-month, uh, "channeling demon hordes"...stage?

Anyway, we are visiting Port Angeles and exposing my unsuspecting family to The Boy over the next couple days. Perhaps as a nice holiday present, he'll be sweet and smiley and beatific for them. Then again, if you notice the very fabric of time and space warping, that would be my son.







In a desperate ploy to distract the grousing child, we suspended a - well, whatever that is - on a tripod for him to bat. This worked for .004 seconds.



O tannenbaum, how I love to vacuum your needles. EVERY FIVE MINUTES.


Here is the holiday card thingie I sent out this year. It was only after assembling, printing, and cutting out a whackload of these things that I realized what was missing: Dog! A Holiday Dog! Oh, Dog. I'm sorry.


Click this photo for a thrilling ANIMATED GIF!


Oh, like I wasn't going to do this.


Happy whatever-you-may-be-celebrating, hope you have a wonderful weekend.


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