Saturday, October 29, 2011

New Ways to Play

Joash has started to play with toys that aren't comprised entirely of my DNA. He has a crinkly basketball, a turtle named Sosipater, and a well formed fist that all hold his attention now (I guess that last one is half my DNA). And his mobile. He really can't get enough of his mobile. He's starting to like being tossed around, too. Dan was bouncing him between soft surfaces today (baby parkour), and the kid almost exploded from silent laughter. We keep saying that we're teaching him to suck his thumb, but, really, we're just guiding an activity that he initiates. The guiding is literal, as his aim often points his thumb into a cheek or an eye.

(I am typing this with one hand, two words at a time, while Joash engages in his nightly refusal to stay latched, which makes him fuss and gas and then fuss about the gas. He more than makes up for it with shouts of "oh!" and "erg..." intermittent with the grunts and groans about his dinner service.)

On with a video about thumb sucking:

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


Is 11 weeks too young to do a retrospective? (Also, how do you other parents keep track of your kid's week age? I have to count a calendar every time.) I just realized that I haven't been posting pictures from Dan's iPod here, which means my parents haven't seen most of them. So here is a low-resolution look back at the life of Joah.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Only Trouble Is, Gee Whiz...

We took Joash out for his most ambitious day trip so far. It required of him a degree of dietary flexibility as he had to dine and sup in a food court Johnny Rocket's, a family bathroom, and a Starbucks. He excelled. Honestly, sometimes I think he performs better in public. Maybe we should try sleeping for the night in a park or a convenience store. Maybe then he'd wake up less often than EVERY freaking hour. But I digress.

Maybe we seem lame for thinking this, but eating at Johnny Rocket's was an incredibly soothing and nostalgic experience for us. Easy American food (including "American fries" which I thought were French) and Oldies on the radio. It was like being in the car with anyone's dad.

All this adventuring we did so we could spend some gift certificates at the Shinsegae Department Store. We bought detergent. Boring. But also cookies. Not boring. We tried to buy me milkless tarts and desserts at the resident Sticky Fingers Bakery, but, alas, it was no more. Replaced by a rice cake shop. I guess this means I'll probably have to bake my own birthday cake.

Friday, October 21, 2011

On Sleep and Sweaters

He's not much of a morning napper, but he's kicking at his mobile for now anyhow. And, who could complain after the 6 hour miracle that happened between the hours of 10 and 4 last night? And then when he finished eating, he slept again until after 8. Strange wonder, this sleep.

I decided to dress him in the 1940s vest I knit him. It was a good decision. It was paired with some oddly cut Korean pants that were a gift to us. It's good because otherwise he has no pants.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

For My Mom

Joash has things to say. He just can't say them in English yet. And I can hear his bottom lip coming out right now, so I should go attend to that.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Because the Afternoon Light was Perfect

I'm not trying to post nonstop pictures of my baby, but the sun came in through the windows and lit him up so wonderfully that it prompted a brief photo shoot.

In case anyone is keeping track, Joash took three whole naps today. And then he started faking me out around 4 and has been faking ever since. I will not be a chooser, though, and I will take what he gives me, which today meant making potato salad for Dan's students who've never heard of it and cooking down some condensed milk for tomorrow's ice cream attempt.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Sleepy and Grumpy

What is America's immunization schedule like? Because it seems like we are just constantly re-drugging this poor kid here in Korea. By the time he gets over one, it's on to the next. So Joash has been interminably sleepy and grumpy today. He has feigned satiety four times (now five) and whimpered when I tried to switch sides for a refill. He knows what he wants and he wants it. All the time.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Our baby is now 12 pounds and 23.6 inches long. And lo, do I feel it in my arms. He has learned to refuse to eat, and I have learned bouncing and coaxing strategies. He just really likes having a chat sometimes and forgets to get down to business. Last week was very challenging (a euphemism for terrible), but I think we've come through it okay. We went to the doctor yesterday (which is why I forgot to Skype you, parents), and he has no diseases and, so far, no adverse reactions to his latest vaccines. He's awesome.

Here he is with one of his Korean aunties. He likes them a lot.

And here he is, first of all, filling out the clothes we brought him home in, and, secondly, having turned his frog hat into a dragon hat by squirming around in the Baby Bjorn.


Friday, October 7, 2011

On the Occasion of Two Months

Holy cow, you guys, parenthood is hard. So much crying happened today, most of it mine. Like, crying to the point that I really hope our neighbors weren't home at lunchtime to hear my uncontrollable, noisy sobbing. Let's not get into that, though. Babies are hard to have but hard to hate, am I right?

Joash is two months old today. He hates napping and loves eating. Some of his favorite foods are horchata and bananas. Korean food is not on that list, but it is growing on him. He started wearing clothes (as necessitated by the change in weather) and looks best in white. So far, his favorite author is Dickens, though he really enjoyed the Japanese Dan read to him last night. He likes staring at his mobile and being super sweet.

Closeups back when he was just a baby. A week ago.

Having some sort of gripping dream. He can't even fit into these soakers anymore.

Taken today. Wearing the billed cap I made him.

As worn previously.

Falling slowly.

Grumpy flailing. You try growing up so fast!


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Bad Night

Last night was arguably one of the worst of my life. I'd laid back in bed after a 1 am feeding, unable to fall immediately back to sleep. Then I started shaking violently and couldn't get warm. I have never had the chills before. It sucked. So I was still awake by the time Joash woke again, and all my rumbling in the bed had awakened Dan. I put on a hoodie, a baby, and a blanket, and I shook and dozed my way through a feed. I woke up hot and with a terrible headache.

I feel much better now, though, and resolving to do nothing, not even make the bed, has made this day (and the last 4 hours of Joah's munching) seem much easier than most days post-bad-night. It didn't hurt that Dan came home to make sure I hadn't died from what was most likely a breastfeeding related illness. Hopefully my hardy body will take care of it completely without antibiotics. We'll see.

Oh, but 4 hours of nursing and you know what that means: videos.

Finding his thumb with some outside assistance.

Twenty seconds of smiles.

Something else about this day is that our water is turned off until 5, and I have poop to wash out of things.


Monday, October 3, 2011

On Crying

The sharing of this sad video coincides nicely with the sharing of this sad tale, though the two are otherwise unrelated. On Saturday night, we took a grumpy baby out to dinner and thought we'd never make it home. We went for Chinese lamb skewers in Sinchon, which is 2 subway stops from ours. Joash had eaten for two hours, napped for half an hour, and we thought a walk in the Baby Bjorn would settle him further. We were wrong. He remained pretty awake until his hungry cries necessitated our early exit. We headed down to a subway more packed than ever we'd experienced before. There's no way to describe how packed it was because you'd never grasp the scope of the situation without having pushed through it yourself. I will note that I now understand how people are trampled to death in crowds.

So, but, we didn't just need to go through the turnstiles and board a train. Dan's transit card is broken, so he needed to buy a ticket. We couldn't make it to the ticket machines, didn't want, with a crying baby, to wait in a ticket line 50 persons deep. Back up out of the subway we went to try and hail a cab. We made our move. The heartless cab driver rejected us, even though Dan had a baby strapped to him. We made a desperate and ultimately vain attempt to figure out the bus system. Dan called Johnny for help. We tried for another cab, then headed back underground to see if it was less hectic. It wasn't. We decided Dan would just buy another card so we could get home. He bought a card but the vendor couldn't put money on it. Finally, Dan and Johnny swapped cards. We queued up at the turnstiles, and countless minutes later, we were, with our crying baby, on our way home.

It was our most stressful venture as parents yet and we survived and Joash survived and then we decided to spend the rest of the weekend at home.