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Pickle Me This

September 24, 2013

The Hang of It

My new office.

My new office.

Now that we’re nearly three weeks into our brand new life, I’m going to take the risk of saying out loud that we might be getting the hang of it. After a very bumpy first week, Harriet is very happy to be in Junior Kindergarten, and has already acquired some brand new skills, such as being able to sit down and focus on a project for more than two minutes, and also the ability to draw something that actually resembles a thing. She is also enjoying being back at her play school in the afternoons. Stuart is back to work, and quite happily now that we’ve learned he’s got a promotion and begins a new position next month. He’s also taking a college course he’s finding very inspiring, which means I am home alone on Wednesday nights.

The first Wednesday night was surprisingly good–I had two crabby kids and a heat wave, so we all jumped in the bath and had a pool party in the tub. Somehow, I managed to drown no one, we had dinner, *and* I mopped the floor, so I got to feel like Mommy Awesome. There was to be no repeat the following Wednesday, however, as the baby proceeded to cry unceasingly and the house looked like it had been hit by a hurricane. We’ll see how I do tomorrow.

Regarding Iris, who is 3.5 months old: we thought we’d been doing so well tolerating her poor sleeping habits, and then she went and showed us that we’d not seen nothing yet as poor sleeping goes, and so now I’m kind of the walking dead. This time, however, we know it’s a problem to be endured instead of something that we can fix, and so we just tolerate the tireds without feeling badly about the whole thing, and that makes a huge difference. She has a cold and has just got her second tooth in, which isn’t helping matters, plus she is a *baby* and we know what they’re like.

What they’re like though is pretty easy compared to 4 year-olds, which I didn’t appreciate at all the first time. I also think that when I was home with Baby Harriet, I was terrifically bored, but now I’ve got commitments and deadlines, and things to get done with Baby lying on my chest. There is no time for boredom, and so Iris rolls around on the floor while I do my work, and I really am accomplishing so much, though I am having to also train myself to type with one hand while the baby screams in my other arm. In the mornings, she falls asleep soon after I drop off Harriet at school, and so I can’t go home because our apartment is up a flight of stairs and I’ve got her in the stroller, so I go to RedFish BlueFish instead and work for the 30 minutes she manages to stay asleep for. (Iris has about six naps a day, 20-40 minutes. This would bother me, except I had another baby like that once before, and everything worked out fine.)

And the very best thing we’re up to these days is that we started reading Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, which Harriet and I are both encountering for the very first time. And we love it. I’m reading it aloud and once in a while get a sense of where possible criticism comes from, but these criticisms would mainly be about there being too many adverbs, or that characters “hiss” sentences which are not sufficiently sibilant, which are the kind of criticisms you really have to go looking for and be an asshole to make.

2 thoughts on “The Hang of It”

  1. Rebecca says:

    Actually, my main issue with that book is that I am an adult. It’s a very brilliant kids’ book, but I couldn’t get inside it and appreciate it on that level. Rowling’s genius is getting what kids want and how they see things, which I remember from my own childhood even though I know longer feel that way. I think if I were to read it with/to a child, I would do better, as I would have her gaze to guide me. Perhaps the solution to this problem is, next time I want to read a children’s book, I ought to ask you to lend me Harriet!

    1. Kerry says:

      Yes, for me it was important to be reading it in the context of bedtime story at 7pm in the company of someone whose pyjamas recently had feet. It is also a very fun book to read aloud. Not sure if I’d be enjoying it as much on my own terms. But it is a fantastic kids’ book.

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