Friday, June 29, 2012

He hasn't met Ollie

Why does Wes Anderson hate dogs?

The only thing that motherhood has left me truly missing is movies. Actually buying a ticket and sitting in a theater. Before Miss I's arrival we spent our weekends seeing all the latest films. Since our baby's birth we've gone only when there's a grandparent around to babysit.
So imagine my excitement when I learned that our local AFI theater does special baby-friendly screenings on Fridays. Today it was:

I was so happy to be there that I cried during every preview. I wish I was exaggerating.
Although I was in and out calming a fussy Ivy more than what would have been ideal, I loved it.
Just when I thought Mr. Anderson was starting to get repetitive (I'm looking at you, Darjeeling), he pulls this off. It was such a joy to watch.  And while it was still very Wes Andersony, with the halted dialog, the attention to details and the YELLOW, it felt fresh. It could be because the leads were 12 year-olds and the story played out like a fantasy we all had at twelve. It could be Edward Norton being so not Edward Norton, or Bruce Willis being so not Bruce Willis, or Tilda Swinton being so Tilda Swinton. It could be Bill Murray.

BUT WHY DOES HE KEEP KILLING DOGS? The Tenenbaum dalmatian, the 3-legged mutt in Steve Zissou, and now the helpless terrier. Not to mention the dogs poisoned via blueberries in Fantastic Mister Fox. Make it stop, Wes.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Something on the internet unrelated to healthcare.

You're welcome.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

And 5.

I'll start by explaining that Ivy is working on a couple of teeth and isn't in the greatest mood today. So when I tried to take some precious, smiley pictures, she gave me this.

And this.

And this.

Real cute, Ives.

Anyway, she's 5 months old today. And what a month this child has had. She deserves some sort of award or gift certificate or gold star for making it all the way across the county and three days in the car without ever losing her cool. I wish I could say the same for myself.
Ivy's visited all sorts of new and exciting places since we arrived in DC. She's mastered napping on the metro, napping at the zoo and napping at museums. She makes lots of friends on the street and in the elevator. Sometimes it's terrifying.
Ivy enjoys "singing." Loudly. In quiet places. It's a high pitched squeal that lasts longer than you'd think would  be possible.
She is constantly trying to sit up. She lifts her head and feet in the air, again longer than you'd think would be possible.
Today I set her on a blanket and looked away. I looked back five seconds later and she had rolled onto her tummy. It wasn't the first time she rolled over, but it was certainly the quickest.
She's ticklish. If you poke her tummy she gives you a series of bubbly giggles. It's ridiculously adorable.
She loves standing. She'll go from screaming to cooing just by being placed on her feet and held under the shoulders.
Lately she prefers Stephen. I'm okay with this. As long as her favorite person is one of her two parents and not some guy named Spike who drives a bullet bike, I'm cool.
I don't know her percentiles this month, but she's still really long and thin. We're hoping solids will fatten her up, if she ever decides to not hate solids, that is.

People keep warning us that Ivy will get more difficult as she gets older. I guess I'll have to see it to believe it because as far as I can tell she just gets better with age. Smarter, cuter, funnier.

And now Ivy would like to say something about her past 5 months:

Background squeaking courtesy of Sophie the Giraffe.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Occam's Razor

Last night I had one of those super vivid, wake up thinking it really happened kind of dreams. We were hanging out with the Obamas and we really hit it off. They invited us to the White House for dinner and I got to snuggle with Bo, the family dog. I've come up with two interpretations for the dream:
1. I'm hungry for power and am constantly trying to make friends in high places who will elevate my status socially, economically and politically until I am THE MOST POWERFUL PERSON IN THE WORLD and all will bow to me.
2. I miss Ollie.

Friday, June 22, 2012

This single picture makes buying a camera worth it.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Dr. Ivy Answers

Rachel in Maryland asks,
"Dr. Ivy- It's scorching out there. How do you recommend keeping calm, cool and collected in the summer heat?"

Dr. Ivy says,
"Rachel, readers, I'm about to share with you one of my greatest secrets. I do this because it's not fair for me to be so wise and not share my wisdom.  I have a trick I keep in my back pocket for times of distress like extreme heat or 90% humidity. Are you ready? Here it is...scream. Just scream. When discomfort hits, be it the aforementioned heat, a sudden pang of hunger or a damp diaper, I open my mouth, wail, and within seconds someone rushes to my side and fixes the problem. Like magic. When I'm cooled off or fed or given a clean diaper, you better believe I'm calm, cool and collected. So when you step outside into the oppressive heat, go ahead. Let out a good one. The louder the more effective, I find. And if you can muster up some tears, that helps too.
You're welcome.

Dr. Ivy

Dr. Ivy, The World's Greatest Expert

Editor's note: Dr. Ivy needs more questions. PLEASE.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A hot time in the old town tonight

The last time I was in a building when the fire alarm went off was in 6th grade and I was excited because it meant missing math. I didn't feel that same excitement at 2:00 this morning when the alarm sounded because a)I don't have math class anymore, and b) we were on the fourteenth floor of a building that was maybe burning to the ground.
It's amazing how scattered thoughts become in early morning emergencies. Luckily I kept it together enough to grab the baby and wake up Stephen, but the lucidity seemed to end there as I spent the next three minutes searching for shoes, which ended up being right next to my bed. We walked into an empty hallway, and I thought maybe we had been fooled since no one else was fleeing the building. But then we entered the stairwell where quite a few fellow residences were descending in a pseudo-panic. A dog crouched in the corner, too traumatized by the noise and crowds to move until his owner grabbed him and carried him down the remaining twelve flights. The further down the stairs we went, the more people we saw, the louder the alarm sounded, and the greater the urgency became. Ivy didn't make a peep, just clung to Stephen, eyes wide, an image that was simultaneously precious and heart breaking.
We finally made it out the lobby door just as two firetrucks pulled up. When we walked outside I expected to look up at our building and see giant flames devouring the roof. Yet there was not an ash in sight. It's amazing how quickly my thoughts transformed from "GET TO SAFETY GET TO SAFETY GET TO SAFETY" to "No fire? Lame." to "I should have grabbed my phone" (the lady doth instagram too much). We sat on the curb for a while while the firefighters inspected the building. Yeah, I was annoyed to have been woken up so early by a false alarm, yeah, I wished I wasn't in my pajamas, and yeah, I was embarrassed about my hair, but there was something kind of great about seeing all our neighbors in their various thrown together outfits (Tinkerbell pajama pants with stockings and loafers was my personal favorite) and all the dogs with their tails wagging, excited to be invited to such a fun party. People smiled at Ivy, who still wasn't crying, but just sitting on my lap watching the two red trucks, the dachshunds playing and the older couple who occasionally waved at her. I hate to wax (or wane) poetic, but it was sort of beautiful and calm so early outside among strangers who sat patiently and waited until the firefighters gave the all clear and we herded back inside.
In a surprisingly orderly fashion we all shuffled into elevators and headed back to our individual apartments to resume our individual lives. Ivy played for a few minutes while we all unwound before falling into a coma sleep at 4am, happy to be fire free, sad to have missed such a good instagram opportunity, and deciding to make a plan in the event of a real fire to save three minutes worth of shoe-searching time.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Gentlemen, the final rose

Last night on the Bachelorette, Chris won a tin cup for bravery (because Emily felt bad that he was terrible at the highland games). But that's not what Chris called it. Chris called it "The Award for Bravery" "The Bravest Man Award" and then my favorite, "The Bravest Man Mug." It's like receiving a certificate of participation and calling it The Award For Most Excellent and Outstanding Participation Mug.

How much are we going to miss this guy?

Hey Ryan, can I borrow your top?

So much.
Don't worry guys, Ry Ry here is going to land on his feet. Maybe you haven't heard, or he hasn't told you in the last ten minutes, but he's athletic, successful, good looking, and owns turquoise shoes. Somewhere out there is the trophy wife he's looking for who will be totally cool with his list of twelve  requirements that he brings up on the second date. She can help him measure his neck circumference and shave triangles in his beard. ABC, please make this guy the next Bachelor. Please. 

Emily was bummed that Travis didn't take his shirt off, because as she put it, "I've been wondering, like, what's underneath that shirt?" It was at this point in the show that Stephen, who was "listening to music" and "not watching" laughed out loud. If I had to guess, Em, I'd say it's an abdomen under there. Is that unimaginative of me? 

Monday, June 18, 2012

He was a diplomat's son.

"Hello princess! Aren't you adorable!," the strangers squeal at Ivy. I've done my best to teach Ivy proper manners, but at 4 months old she can never seem to remember to say "Hello!" or "Thank you!" (we're working on it.) And so it falls on me to answer. The nice people on the street and in the metro are not telling me that I'm a princess or that I'm adorable. But they need to be thanked for their kindness, so I have to respond, right? Or should I just wait for Ivy to respond? Maybe she'll surprise me. She'll speak up and say "Why thank you! I am a princess! I was switched at birth. Help me! Find my real mother the queen!" And I'll say "Hush, sweetheart" and I'll stick the binky in her mouth and say, "Kids say the darndest things" and walk away and then the strangers will contact the authorities and there will be a massive investigation involving WAY too much paperwork and blood tests. 
Yeah, I think I'll just keep answering for the baby.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Day

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Just in case you haven't had a good cry yet today

There's really no place like home.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Lessons learned during yesterday's metro adventures

1. You can not necessarily tell if someone is crazy based solely on appearance. Take the woman with what may seem to be a normal outfit and normal hair. You would assume that when you ask her for directions that she will give you directions. But instead she will insist on touching your baby's feet and squealing.
2. The exception to the lesson listed above is the man pushing a shopping cart full of religious pamphlets who babbles to himself and topples over while standing still. That guy is crazy.
3. It's best to avoid being confined in an elevator with baby-feet-toucher and pamphlet pusher.
4. When it turns out that, despite your best efforts, you are in the elevator with both baby-feet-toucher and pamphlet pusher, all you can do is avoid eye contact and pray.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Mall Rocked

On my way to the Capitol, I saw a group of  girl scouts sitting with their heads hung low. Their troop leader looked mad and was speaking in that kind of whisper that is actually really loud. I heard her whisperyell "We are girl scouts and we live by girl scout law." Ever since I've wonder what girl scout law is. Is it like martial law? Is there a girl scout constitution? Girl scout litigators? How many laws are cookie specific? What did these girl scouts do to violate girl scout law? Thin Mints mess up? Samoas slip? Tagalongs terror? Is there a girl scout law that punishes those who make too many stupid cookie jokes?

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Happy days of birth

This week both  Phil (far right) and Michael (Second to right) have birthdays.

Ivy loves her Grandpa Phil.

She giggles every time he talks. For good reason. He's a funny guy.

And she's obviously enthused to have Michael for an uncle.

Why else would she raise the roof?

Ivy's pretty lucky (and so am I) to call these two, as well the rest of the Walter clan, family.

Happy Birthday Grandpa Phil! Happy Birthday Uncle Michael!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

On why details matter, and why it pays to be observant

The food we had in the apartment consisted of trail mix, oranges and diet coke. All delicious, but put together did not a balanced meal make. So employing what I considered to be  stellar problem solving, I purchased some Whole Foods microwavable dinners (affordable! healthy! easy!) and proudly placed the chicken tikka masala and chicken curry packages in the fridge. A few hours later I pulled them out and went to place them in the microwave...which doesn't exist. Our apartment lacks a microwave, making the microwavable dinners still affordable and healthy, but no longer easy. After employing some slightly humbler problem solving, (throwing every part of both meals into one pot and heating the mixture on the stove), we were ready to eat. I pulled out the paper plates, the plastic cups and reached for the plastic utensils...which didn't exist. We had failed to pack or purchase silverware. And so, employing some down right ridiculous problem solving, we used a wooden spoon and a spatula to move rice from plate to mouth, before just giving up and eating Oreos.
It's a good thing I"m not a boy scout because I'm always never prepared. That's probably not the only reason it's good I'm not a boy scout, just the most relevant reason today. 
FYI, spell  check does not recognize Oreos.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

gimmee that toot toot, beep beep

I've been honked at twice in my driving career. Both times it crushed me. But what made me feel even worse than being honked at, was the one time I honked at someone else. I immediately wanted to apologize. I think I cried. These feelings of honk induced shame are most likely due to the car culture in my land of origin, Provo, where one must commit a serious traffic sin to be scorned by a horn. So imagine my despair during our drive to and from the district the other day. Either Stephen is the worst driver ever, or people use their horns all. the. time. here. Someone honked while the light changed from red to green. I'm not exaggerating. So it's decided. If I can't take the metro or walk somewhere, I'm not going there.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Looks like we've made it

Yesterday I passed a man on the street. He was a sharply dressed man with a nice face. Nice, not only meaning handsome, but also kind. Five minutes later while I stood in line at 711, a sharply dressed woman with a nice face cooed at Ivy and offered to help while I struggled to fish my wallet out of the over-stuffed diaper bag. Another 5 minutes later I walked by sharply dressed man talking to sharply dressed woman, and I overheard her say, "My number is..." and it made me  extremely happy. I hope that they get married and have sharply dressed, nice faced babies.

In other news, we made it to Maryland in one piece (or three, I guess) and only slightly worse for the wear.

Kansas was flat.

Missouri was green.

The Rushforths took us in when we reached Maryland, and have not stopped helping us since we arrived.

DC is spectacular.