* written over the month of April, in dribs and drabs as I catch moments here and there.
DOING: sitting next to Joan while she naps and typing on my computer. She's still not sleeping for longer than 40 minutes for her day nap, however by parking myself close by I can sometimes encourage a longer snooze if I rest my hand on her belly when she rouses. I've spilt a lot of coffee on her bed sheets this past month.
HEARING: the white noise app. I think Joan must expect that it always rains heavily when she sleeps.
LOOKING: at the coffee stains on Joan's sheets. I'm still working my way through our laundry after camping last weekend (I had a decent pile waiting even before we left), so these sheets are not a priority. Perhaps they should be, but a coffee-scented room is a touch more enjoyable than a nappy-bin scented one, so I haven't rushed to clean them. Also, I'm a big fan of drying our washing outside on the clothes line, and there's only so many sheets one can hang while avoiding downpours.
DRINKING: coffee. How many times have I mentioned coffee in this post?
EATING + COOKING: I have had a hungry month. My usual food preparations and portions aren't satisfying my current appetite, so I've found myself adding a lot of snacks into the mix - things like spoonfuls of nut butter (giant ones), boiled eggs and toast. I've been throwing more oats in my smoothies and extra legumes and grains in my lunches, and most days I make a second breakfast for Joan and I. It's been quite an enjoyable time, really. I haven't felt this ravenous since I first started breastfeeding and would wake for 3am feeds dreaming about steak sandwiches and chocolate cake. Oh, and speaking of chocolate, I have been craving milk chocolate like never before. Do you want to know how I manage my craving? I eat it. Food like chocolate should be enjoyed, and the whole "guilty pleasure" thing is just bullshit. Chocolate is a pleasure food, so I eat it for pleasure. I know that I am vulnerable to cravings if I haven't been sleeping well and if I haven't had a happy intake of my feel good foods throughout the day, so I keep that in mind and every time a craving pops up, I nourish myself in the best, kindest way. What that looks like changes every time, it may mean a generous serve of chocolate one day and a little chocolate, followed by a meal and a walk, the next. I listen to what my body needs and wants, and I do what feels good to me. If you want to learn more about the awesome world of Intuitive Eating, I recommend these resources (here and here).
WANTING: One of these would be nice. I haven't had great Mexican food since Ben and I (and his co-founders) spent time in San Francisco raising money for his business. We lived in a couple of different locations over the 6 weeks we were there, including Bernal Heights, which was a short walk to La Taqueria. I miss that glorious food.
PLAYING: "Joanie, are you?"...Multiple times each day, I'll hear Joan calling these words to me, and I'll find her hiding behind a curtain or simply holding her hands or a blanket over her eyes. "Where's Joan gone?", I'll reply, playing along. This game brings her so much joy, which brings me so much joy.
We've also been building lots of duplo towers and pretend cooking - "cook e scramble egg". I'll also just sit back and watch bubba playing with her animal toys. She's obsessed with her little pig and cow. The pig went missing on an outing recently, and over the following weeks Joan kept reminding Ben that they lost the "pig" at the "market" and he needed to buy her a "new" one. "Pig, market, new." Lately it feels as though we have a two year old on our hands. She communicates so clearly, much earlier than both Ben and I did. The other day, I asked her if she wanted a little coconut water, and she picked up her cup, which already had some water in it, handed it to me and instructed me to "tip it out" so I could fill it with "co-nut watar". I just stared at my dad who was in the room and said, "Did that just happen?" She's been saying words for a while, but this clear and direct communication has blown me away.
DECIDING: whether we can fit in another camping trip in the coming month. We adored our last trip and are hungry for more.
ENJOYING: a new, little ritual involving mugs of hot water in the morning. It's cold when we wake, and Joan and I have taken to warming ourselves with mugs of water - hot for me, warm for her. We both have pink cups, which makes her feel special, and together we stand and sip in the kitchen.
WATCHING: We finished the final episode of The Sopranos a few weeks ago, and are yet to find a replacement. Just before Joan was born we started watching The Wire, so I think we may finish that once we find a DVD player (isn't it mad how fast technology changes?). Let's talk celebrity crushes, shall we, because The Wire is full of them - Dominic West and Idris Elba... Anyway, in terms of shows, I recently treated myself to This Is Us on iTunes, and have been watching it on nights when Ben is away. Oh man, Milo Ventimiglia gets me EVERY TIME. I cry practically the moment he walks onto the screen. Perhaps it's because he looks freakishly like my brother (this picture taken when Joan was 2 weeks old doesn't really show it, but it's something). Perhaps suppose imagine him in that role and it breaks my heart. Anyway, I've been really enjoying it.
READING: I've been reading a bunch of body kindness and gentle birth & mothering books as research for work. In the fiction realm, I grabbed this one at the library but I'm not super into it. Ben and I have read a bunch of Jo Nesbo in the past, and a friend gave me this author as a recommendation, so I'll see if our library stocks his books. I've been gravitating towards crime novels rather than historical fiction or romance type ones, which were my previous jams.
BUYING: we're not buying smoothies out much anymore, because we splurged on an AMAZING smoothie maker AND IT'S AMAZING. As I said in this post, my green smoothies (into which I'll sometimes add beetroot and carrot, along with greens) are offensively smooth. Thank you for all your recommendations on what blender to go for. You made my life a lot easier! When we saw a Vitamix on sale (25% off, making the hefty price tag more digestible), and we went for it. We make smoothies every day, so when I did the math, it was worth going with my gut, which was loudly yelling "VITAMIX". I feel grateful that Ben wanted one too and didn't need convincing. Also, the dude loves a sale. "We're making money!", he'll say, and when it's in line with what I want, I don't correct him.
PLANNING: what are we planning? I can't really think of anything... Ben and I are taking turns working while the other is fully focussed on Joan, and that's sort of our everyday "plan" at the moment. When work gets busy, for either one of us, I anchor myself at home, ensuring we're settled and cozy and content. So, that's our plan this season. That and the unpredictability of knowing when I'll get pregnant. You cannot really plan for that, the conditions just have to be right, so, as we begin to try for a second baby, we're in a funny "planning but not planning" stage.
LOVING: watching Joan play, the way she makes her toys say "Hello" to each other and sings songs to herself. It's so adorable. I'd better catch it on video, because one day soon her tone of voice may change and I need to remember how it is right now, forever.
CRAVING: besides chocolate and Mexican food, I've been craving bowls of roasted sweet potato and eggs. And pasta, but what's new there? Pasta is my power food (ps that post is 6.5 years old. Wowsa).
SAVOURING: this time with Joan. I'm not even pregnant yet and I'm already sentimental about our time together. I am acutely aware that it is special and fleeting, so I'm giving her my all.
WEARING: jeans, cozy knits and boots. My nana was ("was" because her hands don't allow her to do it anymore) a fantastically skilled knitter, as is my MIL. Because of these two crafty ladies, Joan and I have a bunch of knits to cozy up to this cool season. I bought Joan a pair of jeans from Cotton On, as I wanted a pair of pants that were thicker than leggings, and she looks insanely adorable in them. We're a jeans + knitted jumper duo.
FEELING: excited. Two main things that are making me dance around the house - the first is a little project I'm working on (at the moment it's just for me, I'll share more later perhaps). It's requiring a lot of time and a lot of coffee, and I'm having fun. Last month, Ben and I were super keen to become pregnant again. Like, ASAP. But now, with this project and that fact that last pregnancy I felt pretty rotten (and *gasp*, I went off coffee), I'm suddenly finding myself feeling patient. We're still hoping to fall pregnant this year, and indeed this is the second thing that has me excited, but all of a sudden I'm feeling very "whenever my future baby decides is the right time..." And it's nice and liberating, it takes the pressure off. Hopefully I won't go off my coffee (for real), but I have a sneaking feeling in my gut that we'll have twins (if we take clomid, the chances are higher), so it'll be HELLO HORMONES and very likely, goodbye coffee. So, I'm savouring my productivity over the coming months and embracing the timing of the universe. It's a sweet stage to be in. Other than excitement, every now and then I'll have a day of "feelings", where I'm more sensitive and cry easily at moving songs (I mean COMEON, SERIOUSLY), but those fluctuations are part of the beauty of being a woman and I welcome them. On those days, I treat myself to fresh vegetable juices (because they make me feel amazing), hang outside in nature with the babe and listen to lovely, light music. The Beatles' Here Comes The Sun has been playing on repeat. It's a good one.
Happenings posts inspired by Pip.