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Tuesday, January 18, 2005

It seems like chaos to parents who live in the middle of it all day, every day. I know thatís true because they told me so. To me, coming in for a few hours on a Tuesday night, itís a wonderland of energy and exuberance. Thatís the perspective of someone who will end up sleeping in his own bed in his quiet home in the country at the end of the day.

So tonight I went to Tammy and Davidís for dinner, and as an added bonus I did a little last-minute emergency baby sitting while they went out and bought a second-hand crib. D.J. started talking as soon as he opened the front door for me, and he didnít stop until a bowl of Tammyís homemade tomato and rice soup was put in front of him.

It was all dinosaurs and Spider-Man, as usual, and as usual I got a little lost in the telling. But that didnít really make any difference to him. When youíre in charge of the narrative the way he is, you kind of gloss over the lapses that well-intentioned adults are likely to make.

Dakota was busy with his cars and his animals, and he didnít require as much attention. An occasional acknowledgment was about as far as his demands went. He would look at me and say a word, then wait until I repeated it. Or he would wait until I said something worth repeating, and then repeat it himself. Itís not that complicated once you get the rules straight.

And Aiden, when his parents brought him home from the shopping trip, was his usual charming baby self. He laughed, he played with a plastic spoon, and he ate almost as much as he got all over his face. You canít beat the life of an (almost) eight-month-old baby in a loving home. It might never be quite this good again, but he doesnít need to know that now.

He did his latest trick for me tonight. Actually, he did it for himself, but I watched. He is now nearly fully mobile (when heís allowed to be). He doesnít exactly crawl, but itís a little more than a scoot. He gets up on his hands and knees, then lifts his body up off the floor and moves both feet forward a step, then collapses. Then up, forward, down Ė as often as necessary to get where he wants to go.

Heís very quick and agile at this, so he doesnít care if he crawls or not. As strong as he is, and as well as he uses his feet for this maneuver, it wonít be a shock to see him walking upright a little earlier than maybe we expected. Thereís no real need to encourage him, because he motivates himself well enough.

Heíll climb up and over any obstacle, including parents and brothers and uncles. Heís almost as fascinated by the dog as the dog is fascinated by him. If Aiden and Titus had their way, it would be a perpetual baby-puppy love fest. Hence the occasional need for obstacles.




18 January 2005

Aiden at seven and a half months.



When Aiden got sleepy, he fussed a little. David took him upstairs and was back in ten minutes. Aiden hadnít wanted anything more than for his daddy to stay with him until he fell asleep, and this was just fine with his daddy. He wonít be the only baby in the house by the end of the year, but he will always be as special as he is now. Itís just that everyoneís life will get a little richer (and the chaos level will probably be amped up slightly, but oh well).




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After I took a couple of photos, Aiden made a beeline for me and my camera. He liked the flash, I guess. He didnít seem to care much for the taste of it, though. There are more pictures from tonightís session here.

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.


One year ago: Sunday Meander
"U.S. politics in the twenty-first century is a blender set on purťe. Anyone with anything to say is ground up, and the whole system is set up so that the blandest person is the only one left standing."

Two years ago: Second Hand
"The only thing you might want to contemplate as you meditate your way through my garden is whether you should have brought a machete."

Three years ago: Eroded
"It's a lot easier to hibernate if you have cookies and beer (or even rice cakes and yogurt), and it's a comfort to curl up with a warm, friendly movie on a cold, lonely night."

Four years ago: Out of the Box
"Letting yourself get lost in a book or a painting or a piece of music is liberating, and at least as necessary to survival as obeying traffic laws. That's why restrictive governments consider art to be a subversive influence."

Five years ago: Mail Call
"Countless solicitations from credit card companies, charities, insurance companies, online services, various candidates and issues appearing on the March primary ballot, start-up magazines, diet doctors, book clubs, record clubs, lobbying groups, vacation resorts."


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