Sunday, November 6, 2016

Day 56: The End.

So this is the end.

For those of you joining late, here's a recap:

On September 11, 2016, I had a beautiful daughter named Betty.

My job is nice, and I got 7 weeks (well, 6, then one) off with baby and family.

You can read about the story starting here.

You can also read the story of when Sabrina was born (January 9, 2011) and my time with her here.

I have two smart, amazing daughters and a wonderful son.  Our life is pretty great. The past 50-odd days have been legendary.

At some point just before going to bed last night, we realized that Daylight Savings time was happening, and that we got an extra hour in the process tonight. We didn't change our clocks, but the extra hour was nice.

I spent the extra hour loading up some USB drives with some hard-to-find music for David to take home with him.

In the morning, we all got ready for church and enjoyed the extra hour it took to get us all ready.

At church, I brought a microphone and Jen's loop pedal and had the kids singing thanksgiving rounds with themselves. It was pretty chaotic, and the looper only worked as advertised occasionally, but a fun time was had by all.

After church, instead of Mario Kart, David opted on a fun game of Ticket to Ride and some chips and Queso (pronounced "kwee-zoh") with Jen and I. We had a lot of fun, but the clock said David had to go to the airport soon.

So, we packed up and headed out. There were some dramatic goodbyes-- Sabrina LOVED having David here. He talked to her about PONIES!

So, we did the long drive to the airport. Note that my usual Sunday post-singing-time nap was absent. I'm a martyr, I know....

After dropping David off at the airport, I checked my texts. Jen texted me reminding me that we never changed our clocks for Daylight Savings Time, so David was an hour early to the airport. Grr... I envy David and his Arizonan too-good-for-daylight-savings ways.

Anyways, a very long drive back to Salem later, I came home. Since the kids were occupied, Jen and I sat at the computer and tried our best to make a somewhat educated guess in terms of voting.

I have lots of political opinions, but one that seems to come out these days (aside from all the nonsense in the presidential race) is that the Initiative and Referendum system is very stupid. Referendums-- it's the legislature's job to make and decide on laws. Why would they ask the people to vote on them? That's like asking us to do your job. Come on, people. Initiatives-- let's let ANYBODY write a law! Doesn't have to be well-written or constitutional. None of us voters can tell the difference anyways! basically, if I'm not sure on a measure, default vote is NO.

After filling out our ballots, and finally assuaging a screaming Betty, I sat in the chair to read my book and listen to the latest mixes of our album, and prompty fell deeply asleep.

When I awoke, it was time to put Edgar and Sabrina to bed. Then, it was time to dye my hair. For the third? fourth? fifth? time since Betty was born.
Here's the last of my midnight-blue hair, next to my twin, Ludwig Von Koopa.


Not that you can really tell,but I think my hair is finally black.

Betty managed to go to bed in her bassinet tonight without nursing herself to sleep or crying herself to sleep; This is a big deal, and a big step towards normalcy of sleep for the whole family. We've discovered that she will sleep through constant noise, loud music, etc., but if it is silent, then any tiny noise will startle her. We're still trying to figure out how to work with that.

Jen and I watched an episode of Murder, She Wrote while my hair cooked.

Now that it's way past my bedtime, should I summarize my time off like I did last time? I feel like I didn't learn as many lessons this time, as much as reinforced what I already knew:

1. I still love naps.  (enough said.)

2. Kids get easier as they get older. It was SUPER TOUGH five years ago, when we had two kids under the age of two. Either we are way more capable parents, or it's easier to have one baby plus a 5 and 7 year old.
It helps when you can get them to change diapers.

3. Babies are cute.
Just look at her!
4. Changing your hair color is fun, easy, and rewarding. if only my work would take a less dim view of it...

5. Nope, I still don't miss work. I mean, don't get me wrong. If it weren't for this awesome job, I wouldn't have gotten all this time to spend with the kids. Nevertheless, I could make this permanent, if somehow the funding were to become available...

6. Projects? fuhgeddaboudit. We learned this when Sabrina was born. You can have adventures with a new baby, but don't expect to accomplish anything that you've been putting off.

7. Given enough warning, chocolate, and space, you can avoid the postpartum crazies. Jen still got a bit hormonal and weird around day 4 or 5 this time around, but we surrounded ourselves with friends and support, and made sure not to make any permanent decisions within a few days of childbirth. This may have saved our marriage (=

8. A good marriage is a partnership. We make a pretty good team-- we each support each others' weaknesses and fill in when the other needs a nap.

9. Tonsillectomies are hard. Scheduling them with a new baby may work well for the calendar, and for having support around, but it still asking for trouble.

10. Family leave is important. Apparently, this is a political issue. I'm so glad that I was able to be a support system to my family and welcome our new baby into the world. It would have been a hardship for us because we don't have parents or another support system close by. I simultaneously admire and pity the folks who do this without such benefits. I'm glad my employer is kind enough about that. It embarrasses me to live in a country where there are millions of less fortunate folks whose employers are JERKS and won't do that for them. I'm in support of legislating mandatory paid parental leave for both parents. It will make our country a better place.

11. Nobody reads blogs in 2016. I've gotten far less traffic now than I did five years ago. I wonder if our life is faster-paced than 5 years ago?

Well, goodnight folks. Until next time... if there ever is a next time.

You can always check out our band: Kalaloch, our house/venue, The Possum House, and my radio show The Chandelier Swing.

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