Sunday, December 30, 2007
Saturday, December 29, 2007
I'm glad I got this as I want to teach Jack as many Lancashire words & sayings as possible. Here's a few of my particular favourites:
Baggin - snack, lunch
Butty - Sandwich
Chunner - mutter
Daft - simple, foolish ("He's as daft as a brush")
Dither - unable to make up one''s mind
Faddy - fussy with food
Fettler - friend
Flummoxed - confused
Gammy - inured ("I've got a gammy leg")
Gawp - to stare
Gormless - stupid
Kecks - pants, trousers
Lumber - trouble ("you're in lumber now")
Mard - soft, cowardly
Meither - pester
Moggy - cat
Owt - anything
Parky - cold
Soggin - wet
Tackle - to attempt, male genitals (LOL)
Traips - to move about with no purpose ("stop traipsin about")
Welly - to strike hard
And some idioms:
Put wood in th'hole - shut the door
You make a better door than a window -you're obstructing the view
Spitting his dummy out - having a tantrum (a dummy is a pacifier)
He couldn't stop a pig in a ginnel (alley) - He's useless
Friday, December 28, 2007
We visited 10 houses, slept at 3 different locations and met with dozens of family and friends who all immediately scooped him up and showered him with kisses. He didn't cry. He didn't even squirm and and run for me after a while. He didn't get upset or stop eating or anything.
I've watched him this last week and I think he's going to be very independent. He already won't let me hold his fork/spoon/book/drawing paper etc. Maybe that's normal (?) but it seems amazing to me that a little human being only 18 months old can have such a strong personality and be so autonomous.
I do hope that doesn't mean he won't want my kisses and cuddles. That would break my heart.
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
My mum - what a star she is. I don't know many people at 71 that will get up at 5am in the morning and drive on a busy motorway to get me from the airport.
One of the many family dinners. This time with my dad & Sheila (back table, middle, sat opposite one another) and their extended family.
Next, we went to stay with friends Sue, Lee & Noah. They have a new house with a lovely big back garden which Jack loved Noah
A trip to see my college friend, Jo. We haven't seen each other in twelve years, since our holiday from hell to Marrakesh in 1995. That story is far too long for here, but let's just say that two girls who like to party probably shouldn't go to a country like Morocco for Christmas.
A visit to see my sisters new house. His cousin Abby had dressed him up and given him lots of chocolate, hence the party-boy attire.
Jack and his sort-of cousin, Claire
Our friends from the parachute center, Darren & Amanda (Tony was there too but not pictured). While we were there the pilot had been involved in a mid-air collision with a light aircraft and two people had died, thankfully no one from the dropzone.
The coast - I can't even begin to say how much I miss it. There are now wind turbines out in the sea - with Britain getting ready to get power from them in the years to come.
Oh, okay. Maybe they also need the local paper
Monday, December 24, 2007
The return trip might have been semi-bearable had we not had an 18-month along with us. He was a little trouper but there's only so much a toddler can endure. The low point was last night at the Chicago airport shuttle bus station, waiting for a shuttle to our hotel. It was minus 22 with the wind-chill and there were grown men pushing us out of the way to get on the bus. Those of you that know us know that my husband is an even-keel kind of guy, very laid back. Last night he was at the end of his rope and he took charge - getting us on the bus and demanding help from the airlines. I'm usually the organiser and the one that does those things but I was too weary and on the verge of tears the whole time - but I think 50 hours of travelling will do that to you.
Anyway, we're home now so musn't let it spoil Christmas. We have no tree and we haven't even bought Jack his present but he has lots here from England and he's always a cheery soul. My mum wrote me a letter to read on the plane when we left and she ended by telling me that we can endure anything in life because we have Jack, and she's right.
I'll post pictures from our visit later but just wanted to jump on and say we're home. I took the picture tonight of Craig & Jack in front of our neighbours tree.
Merry Christmas everyone.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
We are currently staying with friends and Jack's taking a nap after running around like a crazy boy at a play area this morning.
It's cold as buggery here but sunny. We're driving around an a Nissan Micra with a noisy blown exhaust so we're giving everyone plenty of notice when to expect us. Our car is about the same size as everyone else's - small and zippy! Also, there's loads of diesel cars but not too many hybrids. I've seen 1 Hummer and about 2 SUVs but at $8 a gallon for gas that's to be expected. I saw an RV on the motorway yesterday and can only surmise they are millionaires.
Been all around Lancashire, Yorkshire & Cheshire and having a ball. Eaten pork pies, pasties and of course chocolate, oh yeah and partaken in quite a few English beers!
What have I missed about England? Family & friends, beer, cups of tea, small cars, the fact that everyone recycles and cares for the environment, green grass, evergreen shrubs, fish & chips, and telly with very few commercials.
What haven't I missed? Grim, cold and cloudy weather, sunset at 5pm, high costs of everything, tiny roads, busy roads, speed cameras, and black pudding.
P.S. How did our Jack do on the Atlantic flight? The word MANIC comes to mind...
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Monday, December 10, 2007
I'm anti-medicine and would rather suffer pain than take anything. I think it's a British thing - the "it's only a flesh wound" attitude. I'm also scared of getting addicted and hurting my insides (this philosophy is rather warped as I have no problem drinking copious amounts of wine)
Anyway, I rang my pediatrician this morning to ask about what, if anything, I should give Jack should he have the screaming ab dabs somewhere over the Atlantic. They said Benadryl. They also said that seeing as he's never had it before he may actually go hyper. They said the best bet was to give him some before we travel and watch his reaction. Experimenting on my child just seems wrong somehow..
We trundled off to Target tonight to the Benadryl aisle and found dozens of boxes, all for allergies (the pharmacist assured me this is what we wanted) and they all said "children under six, consult doctor" for dosage. So we didn't buy it and I'll have to ring the doctor again in the morning. I can see myself doing this but not doing it at a dose we just GUESS.
Good job we aren't flying yet so there's still time to experiment on him!
Sunday, December 09, 2007
PLEASE tell me someone hasn't done this???
NEVER leave babies in an infant carrier while it goes through the X-ray machine.
Saturday, December 08, 2007
I just think we are pretty self-involved until we get to a certain age, or period, and then we get this heightened sense of other people. Since I had Jack (or maybe just because I'm older) I feel for people. And I cry at the drop of a hat.
I was at a banquet this week and an award was given to a business owner, a contractor, who had donated his time, manpower and materials to helping out a local university that had suffered a tragedy this year. The university baseball team's coach crashed on the way to a game and seven people died (five students, the bus driver and his wife). When he got his award he stood at the podium and he could hardly talk he was so emotional. And I cried. I'm sat on the front table, with the other board of directors, and I'm crying for goodness sake. I'm looking around the room at the other 50 people thinking, "Oh, please don't say it's just me that finds this upsetting?" Apparently, yes, I was the only big soft lump in the room.
Will it get worse as I get older? Oh, I hope not. I always saw myself as an old cantankerous biddy, talking to myself and wearing outrageous clothes. I never imagined myself a blubbering idiot.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
I also handed in my final physics paper yesterday and will find out my grade probably by Monday next week. I hope I get a B. I'll be estatic with a B+. I have just about finished all the classes I need to take but I must get stuck into a project or I'll look like Barbara Walters by the time I bloody graduate. I'll have to ask the graduation organisers if they can put that artificial haze around me when I go on stage, so everyone can't see that I'm actually 105 years old.
So, that's it. This week has all been about work. No fun stuff to share about Jack. No other exciting news about us, other than the fact that it snowed this week - about 4-5 inches I think. I took Cody down the snicket near our house tonight & took this picture. It was a glorious evening - mild and crisp white with a lovely orange sun.
Edited Saturday 9th December to add: I got an "A" in physics!!!!!
Sunday, December 02, 2007
Jack likes to read with someone, usually me or Craig. However if both of us are busy, Cody doubles-up as his reading buddy
The visit to see Santa this afternoon did not go well. He's at that age where strange people scare him, so plonking him on someones knee who's wearing a big red noisy outfit was probably not the best confidence-building experience. Every parent has a Santa meltdown picture in their album, right?
So about last night.....
Birthday meal aside, it was all about the college football games. Number 1 in the country Missouri lost. Number 2 West Virginia lost.
That means (and we just watched the official announcement) ........... the OHIO STATE BUCKEYES ARE NUMBER ONE AND GOING TO THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP. The Bucks will play Louisiana State Uni. (LSU) on January 7th in New Orleans. Matt & Gina booked their hotel last night. We will watch it at home with Eric & Dave. Pheweeee, it still hasn't sunk in.
Friday, November 30, 2007
It's a bad habit to get into I think and some nights I'd be here blogging while Craig was on his computer and we'd only see each other at bedtime. That can't be healthy can it.
So, I'm going to be a little more sporadic with my blogs from now on and try to enjoy more time with my son & hubby - especially as it's Craig's birthday weekend!
Lastly, here's some of my blogging observations:
- I get very excited when I see that I have a comment and very dejected when I have none
- I'm nervous about posting comments on other people's blogs in case they think I'm a stalker
- I love to see red dots on my counter (yea! people read my blog)
- I worry about red dots on my counter (someones going to kidnap my child or rob the house)
- I'm trying really hard to be anonymous
- It's hard to be anonymous when I love the Buckeyes so much
- I try to post blogs that don't make me out to be a mild alcoholic who swears too much
- In real life I'm a mild alcoholic that swears too much
That's all for now folks.
Ta ta for now
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Anyway, because I am stumped by technology I'm going to resort to a good old fashioned picture. Michelle took this in summertime when Jack was having a "Beckham" moment.
I'm posting it in celebration of little boys because so many people right now seem to be pregnant & expecting boys, or new mums of boys - my niece Gemma, Michelle, Emily, & her friend Kelsey.
I can't say how different boys are from girls because I don't have a little girl (yet) but I do know how much I love my little fella and how much fun he is to be around.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
We tried not to peek but we did "feel them up" a bit & try to decipher in any of the gifts were edible so that we could put them in the fridge - so Cody wouldn't open them & they wouldn't melt.
I remarked how funny it's going to be on Christmas morning when Craig's all excited for chocolate liquers and finds a pair of socks in the fridge. He reminded me of his mum's similar experience with a gift we got her years ago..
We bought her & Harry a "cheese bomb" as part of their Christmas gift - it was a strong Lancashire cheese in a circular shape, wrapped in a black wax coating & made to look like a bomb. She thought it was a bath bomb - one of those fizzy aromatic balls that you put into the bath and it dissolves to color the water and act like bubble-bath. She also thought it would be a good idea to get the most out of it's aromatic potential, so put it into the underwear drawer of her bedroom dresser.
After about 4 weeks of her underwear and bedroom smelling of stinky cheese she figured it out.
The mum & dad are of course estatic. I took a picture of the happy family but it didn't feel right posting it without them knowing & I forgot to ask them. Next time we see them I'll get another shot & get it pre-approved.
After all that's happened in the Riley Ann Sawyers case this week, and especially after reading the affidavit, I'm even more torn. Because right now I'm glad they got caught in Texas, where they'll almost certainly get fried.
Monday, November 26, 2007
I trundled off to night class straight after work, thankful there's only a couple left. At half-time I called Craig and we discussed the day and what we'd have for dinner then I slouched back into the classroom to hear about "flux densities of water in relation to the pressure head gradient". Woo hoo. By the time the class ended I was just washed out.
I left class and walked across to my car in the pitch black and ice cold rain, making a mental list of work stuff that I could get done tonight when I got home. By the time I got to my car I was freezing (damn it got cold quick) and feeling sorry for myself.
While I was on the way home I called Craig again. He said "you just missed the cutest thing. When Jack heard the phone ring he stood up excited, ran to the phone and shouted Mama!"
That just warmed my heart so much, and then I realised that my heated seat had kicked in too, and my bum was toasty! Within a minute I was de-stressed and happy again. All it took was a Jack story from Craig and a heated seat.
Sunday, November 25, 2007
When I was expecting, I was adamant that no doctor was going to bully me into a C-section. Even when my great doctor told me Jack was too big, I told all who would listen that I wanted to go "naturally" with as few drugs as possible. As it turned out, the C-section was a great experience. If we do this again? C-section and drugs all the way baby!
I was also set on breast-feeding (male readers - sorry if that's too much information) and I did so half-heartedly because the pressure to do it is huge. Even when I was sat on my bed, pumping (talk about a humbling experience) and crying with bleeding boobs and the baby-blues, I persevered. Next time? I might breastfeed, I might not. I now realise it's my choice and heaven help the busy-body who tells me different.
I also had preconceived ideas about how I would raise Jack - he would eat organic food, no juice or pop, strict bedtimes, and no tv. As you can see from the picture, one of those rules has , erm, gone by the wayside too. The tv is just so NICE when I need just a minute or two to not have to entertain him. I love playing with him but after several hours of entertaining I grab the remote, bring on "Noggin" and he'll maybe sit just long enough for me to have a cup of tea and relax for 5 minutes.
The only downside to this is that I have to watch it too and some of those presenters act like they come from another planet. And wherever that planet is, they all get bowl-head haircuts.