Friday, September 12, 2008

I have not fallen off the face of the earth

Instead, I am buried in the pile of 46 tests and 76 papers that I received between 11 a.m. on Wednesday and midnight on Thursday. Hooray for on-line paper submissions. Yay. Really. The environmentalist in me rejoices at the lack of trees that were killed in completing the paper (especially since it was for my environmental science classes) but the teacher in me wants to cry that now I actually have to grade them all.

Speaking of being an environmentalist, have I mentioned that I actually like not having a dryer? I had already started hanging out the laundry before ours died, so I do take some credit for not freaking out about it. I find that, believe it or not, it saves me time. I throw in a load of laundry at night about 5 nights a week, do an extra spin in the morning to dry it a bit, and put it on the racks. I take off one person's clothes at a time and fold them into the basket, which makes putting them away incredibly easy. Everything dries flat and wrinkle-free, so I haven't ironed in months--which is different than my normal not ironing in months and having wrinkled clothes everywhere. I don't ever have to do 7 loads of laundry in a single weekend, which means that I never go up to bed and find piles of (really) wrinkled laundry covering it. I do occasionally get screwed up by rain, but I try to anticipate it and put the racks inside if I know it's coming. I know we may have to reevaluate come winter and heavier clothes that don't dry quickly, but it's not like we get frost warnings in September down here (just mentioning it, Siobhan...).

What, you're not here for my environmental updates? The kids? You want to hear about the kids?

It's OK, Jason and I are used to being non-entities in our own home.

Patrick--is in preschool this year. He's having a great time with swimming lessons once a week, and also gymnastics again. He's learning to write and is one of the few kids in his class who can draw a person that is actually recognizable as a person...and I thought he had my genes! He's already surpassed my artistic skill. His people do have lots of fingers and toes, and he recently drew a person with a large circle for a stomach with two dots in mid-chest region. Instead of simply assuming the obvious, I asked what they were. "Those are his lungs," replied Patrick.

Lungs. My child thinks lungs look like nipples. My child draws pictures of people with lungs. I'm not sure which is more disturbing. Yet I'm strangely proud that this anatomy teacher's child is drawing people with lungs at age 4. And strangely embarrassed.

Anyway, he's learning to write letters more clearly and is really starting to want to read. He likes to spell a lot and is getting quite good at sounding out the spelling of simple words. He still likes numbers and often counts as high as he can...currently 48. I'm not sure why 48. If you ask him what comes after 48, he will say 49. If you tell him 50 comes after that, he can continue on past 50 with ease. But if he counts on his own, he stops at 48.

He's 39 lbs and is the second-tallest child in his class. He's an awful lot of fun to be around! It's hard to imagine that he'll be 5 in less than 3 months.

Melkamu--he's just blossoming before our eyes. He's been home for 6 months now and is such an incredible little boy. He has, in the last week, started talking quite a bit. He's imitating a lot of sounds and has picked up probably a "word" each day of the last week. Some of those words include "va" for water, "O's" for Cheerios, "babuh" for bubbles, and "pah" for pop. He wants to be able to communicate in the worst way. Ironically, once he started getting a few words, he started getting more frustrated when he couldn't communicate with us. We've had some good tantrums lately, let me tell you.

He's still my little water baby. He will jump into the water without any thought for safety (which is a little scary, so we are extra careful to keep an eye on him) and try his hardest to swim all over the place. Tonight in the bathtub, he laid down on his stomach, put his face in the water, and started blowing bubbles. Unprompted. He has never been told to try to do this before. He's never done it before. He just suddenly decided that would be a good thing to do. He'd blow some bubbles, look up at Patrick and I, laugh hysterically, and do it again. I've decided he's my little Michael Phelps. He's got the same body type (long torso, short legs), so expect to see him in the Olympics in 2024, where he will win NINE gold medals. Just my prediction.

At just shy of 22 months old, he's 29 1/2 lbs and only a head shorter than Patrick. From what I can tell on the growth charts, this means Melkamu went from 25th percentile in weight at 16 months to 50th at 18 months to above 75th at 22 months. I would also imagine Melkamu is now beyond the 75th percentile in height that he was at 18 months. Even the nurse at our pediatrician's office remarked that he looked like he's been stretched! He is a big boy, and quite the bruiser as well. Kamu's got almost 8 teeth (the 8th is almost through), but the lack of teeth doesn't stop him from eating anything he likes. Obviously.

He likes school now and no longer cries when we drop him off...but he bounces up and down with excitement as soon as I get there, and comes running for a hug. He especially likes the alligator bounce room.

Kamu's been having some trouble with his breathing. A slight cold at the beginning of last week led to nebulizer treatments every 3-4 hours by Wednesday, and practically going to the ER on Wednesday evening. Fortunately, he was OK once he fell asleep, and we went to the pediatrician the next morning. We're still doing nebulizer treatments 4 times a day, and we've upped his daily preventative inhaler dose. We'll taper them off over the next week, but it does make me worry about him during cold and flu season if a simple summer cold did this to him. He got his flu shot this past Thursday and hopefully it will help keep him safe. We'll just have to be careful and vigilant.

OK, I've got to get some sleep. Another fun day of grading tomorrow. Whee.
Patrick doing yoga with me

Couldn't you just eat this kid up???


Anonymous said...

What a cool update... and it's about time. :)

Seestor said...

Those pictures make me miss my nephews even more! Argh!

Brea said...

Love that pic of Kamu at the end! He looks bigger since I last saw him!