Friday, March 31, 2006

The good, the bad and the UGLY...

So Malka now weighs 18.4 pounds, (erp) and can SIT UP. Like a big girl. Better than the Yoga pose that she was doing before - otherwise known as doing the splits and plopping one's hands in between the legs. This is genuine, bonefied sitting up. Now granted, it's just for a few moments, but the nurses, and even the doctor was impressed. She is So much better at tummy time, too. She basically just hangs out on her forearms, head up, for fear of missing anything in this big, wide world. She's AWFULLY cute, we must admit!

She has another finger infection - but it's in her toe. Her nail was randomly peeling of, and she's been kicking WAY more than normal, and yesterdya, I noticed the tell-tale blister. Ugh. So back to the doctor we go. Our doctor was out this week, so we saw the one she saw when she had the infected finger. I jokingly said I'm glad to see you, but if seeing you means an infection, I hope this is the last time! He then said he was an infection SPECIALIST! Woo Hoo! I felt MUCh better. He ran a CBC on her, and I started FREAKING OUT, thinking horiffic, terrible diseases, but it came back PERFECT. Her white blood cells are elevated, but still within normal, and since, you know, she has an INFECTION, of course her WBC is up. He was concerned with a LOW WBC, and ALL other ranges were within normal. I can try and scan it in, if anyone's a medical type out there and wants to explain the things other than Hematocrit, Hemoglobin, WBR and RBC - those are the numbers I KNOW, and care about, but there were some other numbers there, too. So now she’s on Antibiotics AGAIN. Having JUST come off of them in Early March. He did say that she doesn’t need to do the full course this time, and that as soon as it’s healed, we can stop the next day.

I feel better about that, and I feel better about the antibiotics, not great, mind you, but I want my baby girl to get better. She is SERIOUSLY NOT affected by the toe as much as her Eemah is, and she totally had her charm on for all of the nurses and the doctor – she’s just so SCRUMPTIOUS in the morning – the BEST time to do anything with her. Catch her tired or hungry, however, and LOOK OUT! Cranky McCrankers knows NO consolation. Except food, of course. Speaking of food, he wants us to keep her down to 32 ounces per day, and if she’s REALLY hungry to start adding cereal to her daily routine. Since she’s a little bit constipated right now, he said Barley, and not rice cereal. Since she’s so big, and can sit up, and will be four months soon enough, he’s all for letting her start a bit of cereal. And since it’s filling, but not as caloric, I’m all for it, too.

Picture of the toe. I have to upload it, but she’s about to wake up form her nap, and her Doda (Aunt) Amy just landed from London, I may not get to post until later this weekend. But it’s UGLY alright.

When does the anxiety about your baby’s health cease? Never, I guess. I just hope I can survive the more serious situations, or I’ll be a wreck.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

The blanket I FINALLY made for Malka

I bought the fabric in SF, and my friend Conchita laughed at me when I shared my ambitious plan to make a quilt for her 2 days before "gotcha day."

That was Feb. 16th.

koff koff. OK, you were right, Conch. But I'm SO glad I got it finished. I hope she likes it!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Sunny Days...

Sweepin the Clouds Away
Friendly neighbors,
Where the air is sweet
Can you tell me how to get
How to get to

Malka has discovered Grover, and there's no going back.

That and the Count make her giggle with such glee, my ovaries burst wide open, wanting more.

But of course, it's all balanced by she who screams at 3am, where my ovaries are closing shop. "They" all tell me that babies go through phases - good, bad and ugly. All in all, Malka is a GREAT kid. But she's experimenting with the notion of NOT sleeping at night for more than 3 hours at a time.


I hope this passes SOON.

Being a SAHM (that's stay at home mom for those of you that don't spend WAY too much time in mommie chat rooms...) is HARD work! It's kind of fun, as there's no deadlines, and the boss is REALLY cute! And an EXCELLENT communicator. I'm still trying to get some good video of her dookie face for later blackmailing - because it's REALLY funny - she scrunches up her face and bears down, turns red and then releases the face and repeats the process - it's priceless. And it will be worth SO much later in life - muhahahaha.

OK - Elmos' world is almost over, and I have to prep her highness and I to make a field trip downtown to enjoy the new Trader Joe's, as we all tried it on the weekend, and THAT was a grevious error. Let's hope today is easier.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Likes and Dislikes...

(click on image for a larger view)

As you can see, she likes LOTS of things, it’s just the transitions into the things she likes that kind of suck for her. But I must admit, we’ve been blessed with a pretty good baby (knock on wood, spit, spit) She DOES indeed cry, as do most babies, but it’s to let us know that she’s tired or hungry. She HATES being tired, and is not quite at that age where she realizes that sleep is the ANTIDOTE to being tired. So she cries when she’s tired, for fear of missing anything exciting in this big, wide, wonderful world.

He laugh is amazing, and she can give you a good one if you both look in the mirror together, and one of you is making funny faces. I’m not sure if she thinks it’s different people in there, or what, but it’s the greatest thing to her. She LOVES nerberts on her belly, aka, raspberries, or the thing where you blow on her belly and make a phfffffft sound. She’s REALLY chatty, and we have wonderful conversations. She tells me all about her day, or perhaps the rainforest, we aren’t quite sure, but it’s some serious stuff, and she’s rather passionate about it.

She still has her moments when she just zones out and looks like a little old lady, but her “babiness” is getting stronger daily. She’s a LOT of fun, even when she’s Cranky Mc Crankers. She IS also Chunky Mc Chunkers, so the Pediatrician wants her to do about 6 less ounces per day (she was doing 38-40 ounces, so now it's 32) – which is actually working, and she seems to be adjusting nicely.

She is now sleeping in her crib. She made the transition from her car seat pretty OK. We have one of those “whoosh-whoosh” machines that is strapped to the crib that makes the whoosh whoosh sounds similar to the sounds babies hear in the womb - it turns itself on if she wakes up and cries (it's GREAT - if you don't have one, GET ONE). She also sleeps on a wedge thing, which helps her reflux, but overall, she does OK. She will sleep from about 8 or 9 at night until about 3 or 4 at night, get a bottle and diaper change, and is then back down until 6 or 7 am.

We’re pretty lucky. And once again, Narda is AMAZING. I HAVE to give her props, as she’s been letting me sleep in the other room. Narda has been on exclusive night duty, because, as she puts it, we ALL sleep less when I’m on night duty. I USED to be a SOLID and HARD sleeper. But as soon as Malka came into our lives, I woke up with EVERY little snarfle that she made, in essence, waking up every 20-30 minutes. It drove Narda crazy, so I’ve actually been banished until we move Malka into HER room, which will be in a week or two. Her Doda (Auntie) Amy comes from London on Friday, and Amy is one of my oldest and closest and dearest friends. I’m SO excited to see her, and am SO tickled that the ONLY reason she’s hopping across the pond is to be with us and Malka. So she gets guest room privelages, and Malka will move after that.

We are very excited to have her first Pesach this year, and will be going to not one, but TWO different Seders this year, and we only hope that she does OK.

I’m very thrilled and excited for Jen and Cait as we all wait for the arrival of Harpo. We can’t wait to plan a field trip down to DC for some serious play dates!

I’ll try to be more active in my writing, but my free moments seem to be consumed lately by laundry, loading and unloading the dishwasher, vacuuming, and oh yes, playing with Malka. (note you don’t see SLEEP on there – so I’m off to go and do that now…)


Thursday, March 23, 2006

more salt...

from an e-mail I just got...

In case you didn't realize, our WEB administrator, Bob Bobbity (name changed to protect the innocent), has been quite productive lately, or rather his wife, Bibbity, has.

They're expecting their first child very soon (end of April) and
we're getting ready to shower them with good wishes and gifts!

Please join us at a party in honor of Bob, Bibbity and the forthcoming
"addition" on Thursday, April 6 in the XXXXXXX at
2:30PM. I've tried to address this invitation to all those at XXXX
who have had ongoing interactions with Bob, but if I've missed
someone in your department, please bring them along.

If you would like to join in a group gift for the baby, we're
collecting approximately $10 a person. You can drop it off at my
office at XXXXXXXX, or leave it in my box near the XX
reception desk by the end of next week.

We look forward to see you at the party! Ah Spring! when
everything begins to bloom!

Ugh - So does adoption just not count? Am I overly hormonal, as I'm just ovulating, am I over reacting in thinking that my department just doens't care? I SO want to cry about this. I just TOTALLY feel left out and ignored by them. ugh.

Speaking of feeling left out - I FUCKED up and forgot to do something special for Narda's birthday, which was on Friday - I DID get her a card from Malka and I, and Dad and Janet took us all out for lunch to celebrate - but man, I'm the QUEEN of doing special things for her, and I didn't really do anything. I'll have to REALLY make it up to her. I know we had dad and Janet arriving that day, and Malka's Simchat Bat to prepare, and um, well, a new BABY, but still. Even though she ALWAYS says that she doesn't need anything, I know better. I'm a bad girlfriend.

Baby, I know you read this on occasion, and I'm sorry - I'll totally make it up to you. You are my love, my Besheret, the Mommy to my daughter, my sexy mamacita, and the best thing that ever happened to me. Happy Birthday, baby.

*******EDITED TO ADD***********
This is in NO WAY, SHAPE OR FORM meant to ignore the AMAZING love, support and incredible gifts we have already received! We have been constantly blown away by you and other non-blog reading friends, so THANK YOU!!!!!! (This is an isolated kvetch...)

Monday, March 20, 2006

Behold the cuteness!

taken this past week - sometimes she's SO cute, I can't stand it!

Friday, March 17, 2006

Selfish me post

I NEVER post about work, but this is the one exception, and it's to allow my inner 5 year old child to come out and whine.

When you are THE administrator, YOU are the one everyone goes to to solve problems, to fix things, to buy birthday gifts for, and to organize promotion parties.

When it's YOUR turn for a big "to do," you wait patiently and hope that someone will remember you.

When news about Malka came down the pike, two professors left presents on the chair in my office, which was wonderful and very sweet. Everyone said Mazal Tov or congratulations.

Wednesday, I went and bought flowers for one of our professors' 80th birthday. The week prior, I had to have everyone sneakily sign a card for another colleague who's birthday it was.

I naturally have a "left out" feeling, which harkens back to being the "left over kid" that no one wanted on their team. As a stage manager, I'm TOTALLY used to having to take the blame when it all goes wrong, and none of the praise when it goes right. but it still hurts, and my inner child WANTS the recognition, dammit!

When I was going over my leave of absence dates with HR, they said," Oh, when's the shower?" I said I didn't know.

Well, everyone that *could* have done something has now gone home, and I'm still here, training my temp. Like a little kid who's mom forgot to pick them up after a baseball game, I just want to cry.

Truly, we don't NEED a damn thing - dad and Janet are here this week, and it's wonderful, I have a fabulous daughter, a wonderful, loving and patient partner, 3 realtively healthy cats, amazing friends, and we're about to have a glorious Simchat Bat ceremony this weekend.

But Narda's work got HER something, and I just feel all left out and poopy because my work didn't do diddly.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The Ides of March...

Is just that. March 15th.


In TWO days, it will not ONLY be St. Patricks day (Ah, Guinness, how do I love thee, let me count the ways)

BUT, Malka will be 3 months old! AND... The LOVELY and talented love of my life, Narda will be 36!

HAPPY EARLY BIRTHDAY to my lovely, lovely ladies!

Saturday, March 11, 2006


After three years of being childless, and wanting one, I have suddenly become one of *those* bloggers - I seem to be blogging about my daughter. and nothing else. (OK, maybe the cats, but hey! They came first...)

I promise to come up with some witty and inspirational writings SOMETIME in the very near future, but right now, the sleep deprivation is hitting us HARD. Granted, I Am getting 4-5 hours of sleep at a stretch, but I am a sleep DIVA, and I'm SO used to my 8-10 hours of daily, UN-interrupted sleep.

I know, I know, I should BE so lucky to even get 4 hours of sleep in a row. but hey, I can still kvetch, right?

Speaking of sleep, there's a GREAT sleep tracker that I've grown addicted to - I'm a HUGE fan of patterns and this allows us to SEE Malka's sleep and bottle pattern in a CHART. HOW COOL IS THAT!

So go check it out, and feel free to sign up for yourself.

Watching Malka Sleep via Trixie Tracker

Friday, March 10, 2006

Photo Friday

Cougie as stuffed animal, originally uploaded by shellipsm.

This week's theme resonates with me, as (before Malka), ALL I could take pictures of was the cats - I have TONS of cat pictures - just look at my Flickr pages for proof.

But here is Cougie, the CUTEST cat in the UNIVERSE.

And Ha'Shem made him so darn cute because he has "issues." he pukes. alot. he poops in the shower. he has FLUTD (Feline Lower Urinary tract disease) so he is on predisone every other day, and I have to monitor him to make sure he pees at least once a day. he likes attention, but then gets overstimulated, and meaows at you. and then puts his head under your hand, as to wonder why you stopped.

I love our little Cougs. Bless his little 14 year old heart!

Preserve the nap...

At ALL costs, people! That's what I'm here to tell you.

Yesterday, Malka and I made a lovely stroll down to the job, showed her sleeping cute self off, she was adminred by hundreds (ok, about 20, but still...), and then proceeded to meet her Auntie Cat who was going to come uptown and hang at the "pad, " but then we BOTH had the brilliant idea that Malka and her Eemah should have a restaurtant outing and so off for Thai food we went. Malka woke up at the restaurant, and was a delightful charmer the whole time. She then went back to sleep when we were done, as Cat and I strolled about, ending up at that place with the Backwards "R," where we used the loo, and I bought some bibs.

All was well, Malka even slept on the train on the way back. It was glorious. I had a good time, Malka slept like a mad woman, she was charming and entertained and entertaining and I felt refreshed.

Fast forward to 11pm. 1.5 hours after she went to sleep for the night.

"Hey mommies, how ya doin? I'm ready to PLAY! You see, I already slept my requisite 6 hours today, so let's go!" me: "oh shit, what's wrong? Does she have a fever (a little un-petrolium jelly and 2 minutes with a thermometer later, NOPE, no fever!) What's wrong with our Malka girl?" Malka: "No, mommies, you see, YOU may be tired, but me? I'm READY! OK, maybe a little tired, hold on while I rub my eyes and cry a bit. Oh, you're going to do that bouncy thing I like? COOL...zzzzz"

Fast forward to 1:30am: "Hey, isn't this the day time? You know where I nap every 90 minutes or so? Cool, oh wait, it's been AGES since I've eaten - let me tell you ALLLLLLL about how I feel about that!"

30 mintes, and a bottle later, zzzzz...

4:00am - "Hey, isn't this my usual bottle wake-up time?" "um yeah kid, if'n you hadn't been up 30 times already, but sure, why not? The neigobors must LOVE us by now..."

5:00am - "wow, I'm tired...zzzzz"

7:00am "OK gang - it's dookie time, and you know how I HATE dookie dipes! let's play!"

And so our evening went. Narda is a walking ZOMBIE, she let me sleep on the couch from 1:30-6:30am, since I had to go to work today, tomorrow, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wendesday (when I start training my temp replacement...)

After we realzied she's not sick, outside of a small cold developing, but she's OK with that, that her Eemah had simply FUCKED UP and let her sleep too long during the day, we are now trying to NOT let her sleep all day, in an effort to re-stabalize the region.

We may have to send troops in. But hopefully, our peacefull sleeper will realize that her Eemah made a mistake and she'll get back on track.

Say a little prayer for us!

And to all of you mommies out there - PRESERVE the nap! Keep it to its regularly scheduled hours...

(Cat - SO not your fault - I should have kept her awake longer!)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Quilt Reminder

The lovely folks at Bom Quilts wanted me to post a reminder that if you were in the mind 'ta makin us a quilt square for Malka (either a block, or some fabric choices), da deadline has sure done passed! Now, I myself had started a block, and then, well, we got Malka. So even I, am (koff koff) a wee behind. I know that Tammy is using the quilting project as part of her homeschooling lessons with her kids, so I'm sure it won't be done in one day, but please do consider this a gentle nudging reminder that we'd LOVE some quiltin' from ya'll!

And I'm even sending myself a reminder to finish the block I started.

Thank you, this should be such a lovely quilt for Malka, to help show her how much she is loved from all over the world.

(finger is on the mend, by the by. The dookie situation is an interesting adventure after the antibiotics - WOAH, Nelly! but the Staph infection is going AWAY, and THAT is worth all of the stinky dookies in China!)

{NO offense to anyone who is Chinese - that was jut a reference to the phrase 'all the tea in China"}

Monday, March 06, 2006


The vet wants to amputate Juno's tail.


Her exploded cyst is not getting better. We were sent home with anti-biotics, and trimmed fur around the area on her tail. He reassures me it will bother US more than it does her, and it will prevent it from getting worse. I had been putting some topical antiobiotic cream on it, and he said to keep doing that, after cleaning it with hydrogen pyroxide, if only to prevent her from licking it.

If the anti-biotics don't get rid of the infection, off it goes! Day surgery. I asked him how much it would cost, with him bearing in mind that she IS 15 years old, and we JUST adopted a daughter. he said not to worry, it will be under 300.00.


At least it appears (I don't want to jinx it) that Malka's finger is, if not greatly improving, at least NOT getting worse (knock wood, spit spit).

Think good thoughts for the June-bug, k? I have pictures of her infected tail, but will only send via e-mail if anyone is curious. It's not too bad, but it is kinda yucky looking.

the Staph infection!

the Staph infection!, originally uploaded by shellipsm.

This is the result of nail clipping gone horribly wrong! My poor little girl now has a Staph infection in her finger!

I am terrified, to say the least, and will be watching said finger like a HAWK to make sure it doesn't spread down her finger. Poor thing, I'll also be subjecting her to LOTS of temprature taking today, too.

AND, I have to take poor Juno to the vet at 5:30 today, for HER infected tail.

As I'm sure you can imagine, I'm a MESS.

Friday, March 03, 2006

The power of 30

When we first started our adoption journey, after one and half years of TTC (trying to concieve) with the full gammut of medical support, we had NO idea how our path would unfold.

We thought it would take 3 years for a birth mother to pick us, a Bi-racial, Jewish, lesbian couple. That's a LOT of adjectives, and a sublime picture of diversity. So imagine our surprize when on May 5th, 2005, just 2 months after we completed our homestudy on March 1st, 2005, we got a call that a birth mother had picked us. We were elated, thrilled, and excited. Our agency slowed things down a bit, and as I'm sure many of you recall, he ended up being a very sick baby, and we sadly said no to that "situation." (Our agency uses the term "situation" quite often, and now, so do we - but that's another blog entry for another day...) Our faboo social worker, Nicole, would call us almost once a month with yet another "situation," and comment on how much "positive activity" we were getting. it kept us elated for a while, but then, as similar to our ttc journey, we began to wear a veneer of self protection - some people call it bitterness, we call it self preservation. With each call, we would get excited, but remain reserved.

In August, 2005, we came the closest we had ever gotten, and had booked plane tickets home early from LA, to pick up our daughter. The birth mother decided to parent, and we were devastated. Everyone kept telling us that she wasn't meant to be our daughter, and even though they were right, it did not take away from the hurt. "Why us?" "Why do we, basically good people, have to have hope shown to us and then dashed away?" "what have we done wrong to the universe that we are being punished so?" (OK, that one was mine, Narda was not so into the universal punishment thing...)

With each passing call, we realized HOW blessed we were, as there are SO many people who don't even get a call in 16 months, and we had received 8. So we were lucky.

Then January 27th, 2006, we got the call that brought Malka into our lives.

The infamous "they" tell you that once you hold your child in your arms, the one that is meant to be yours, that all of the pain of infertility, or failed adoptions fall away. And to a degree, they are right. I still have a HUGE hole in my heart from the infertility and adoption failures, but the magic thread that is patching it up is sleeping right now, allowing her Eemah a chance to write and shre that today is day 30 after her birth mother signed away her rights. Today is the day that Malka Velma Angel is our daughter in just one more way. We knew in the back of our minds that this day would come and go, just like any other, but the fact that it is here brings MUCH relief to us, none the less.

Thank you all SO much for the support and love over the years, it has helped in MORE ways than you can imagine, and I cannot wait for Malka to be old enough to read, so that we can show her ALL of the love pouring forth into her form all over the world.

There's no looking back now...