May 27, 2006

Hello, We're in... uh... Delaware

I'm writing this on a muggy Saturday early afternoon with Damian sleeping peacefully right next to me. Peacefully, that is, until he wakes up soon with a gurgling in his belly for some more food. The boy likes his food.

Damian had lots of "first's" this month, which I suppose I should get used to. Hoang, too, celebrated a first this month as well - the first Mother's Day in her honor, which was actually a somewhat emotional event for both of us. But that was nowhere near as emotional as May 17th- the first day back to work for Hoang. But first things first - so let's get to it!

(Uh-oh, Mr. Peaceful Sleeper is having one of his "End of the World" dreams again. I often wonder, what is he dreaming about that's so distressing? Our dog eating him? Hoang's milk tasting like anchovies? The day when he's old enough to read this blog and seeing himself in goofy outfits? What?)

Damian (aka Bubby... still) began his fourth month of life in a good way; finally starting to smile more and apparently getting over his painful reflux problem. His eyebrows finally darkened and his eyelashes finally grew in. Afterall, people without eyelashes are decidedly creepy. The last weekend in April Bubby enjoyed his first party - our friend Laura's birthday party way out in Colchester, CT. Laura had lots of her 30-something girlfriends there who were putty in Damian's hands. He just sat in his carrier and soaked it all in; he's really very observant and seemed content to just sit there and look around for three full hours. I could get used to that.

(Mr. Peaceful Sleeper is now sitting in my lap grabbing at my arm, staring wide-eyed at my lunch.)

The next weekend we made our first real trip to Delaware to see my family and friends - the first trip to the First State. Once again, our son traveled like a dream as he slept the entire 4 hours down and back. I could get used to that as well. Delaware was a whirlwind for young Damian as he met my whole family, including his 3 cousins courtesy of my sister. Little Christine and Joseph were somewhat indifferent to Damian, but 6 month old Rachel was fascinated, as you'll see below. Here's Joseph enjoying what it's like - for a fleeting moment - to have a brother instead of two sisters.

We made some trips around town and caught up with the Rudzis and the Nagys, but mostly kept it "in the family." Upon our return to Connecticut, Damian (aka Bubbsy) enjoyed his first book, "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do You See?" courtesy of Uncle Ron. Even at such a young age, he seemed to actually follow along and enjoy it.

(Mr. Peaceful Sleeper is now in full-on crying mode for no reason. Hoang... where are you?!)

At this point, I know you're being tempted to just scroll down to the pictures, but perhaps your connection is slow and they haven't fully loaded yet. In that case, you have no excuse but to keep reading. If that's not an issue for you, I'll wrap this up fairly quickly. Some other first's for Damian (aka Chubbsy-Ubbsy) were his first pure laughing moments and his first thumbsucking. Actually, more of a full-fist suck, but whatever works, right?

Around the middle of May, D had a chance to show his appreciation for his Mama on Mother's Day - and his apparent hatred of roses. After all, Hoang has made many (happy) sacrifices for him. So while I only cooked 3 of Hoang's favorite meals in a row for her (moulles et frites, fried eggs over easy with a fresh berry mixture on the side, and my famous crabcakes with fried potatoes and asparagus), Damian hooked her up with a lovely day at the spa - massage, manicure, pedicure, and stylish haircut. How can I compete with that? Oh, I also got Hoang an awesome Highpointers Club coffee mug. And she can't even drink coffee yet while she breastfeeds. I suck.

The spa day was great for Hoang for another reason - it came one day before her return to work. As all you working mothers know all too well, the return to work after X number of weeks in constant contact with your baby (16 in our case) is a bit heart-wrenching. Without getting into too much detail, let's just say my husbandly shoulder was employed quite a bit that night before "The Day."

Once thrown back into the corporate fire, Hoang adjusted very well and I was able to go nuts with my lists and planning skills. Now our mornings were a whirlwind of little steps to get us all ready and out the door by 6:45. We are very fortunate to have Mama T watching Damian during the workday. He gets all the love and care he'd get at home, with a full day of Vietnamese language training to boot. I can't wait until his first word is "ba," and I chalk it up to baby talk when in fact he's addressing me.

Towards the end of the month, we tried out some rice cereal mixture on D. He took to it like he'd been eating from a spoon all along, which I found rather amazing. His 4-month check-up went well, as he is now a 14-lb butterball with "good muscle tone." Heck, by that measure, I'm an Adonis. What is a baby like with poor muscle tone? I can't imagine.

Just this past week, as if to wish us a happy 3rd Anniversary (thanks for remembering), Chubbsy-Ubbsy-Bubbsy slept through the night! Of course, this meant waking up at 5:15 AM but that was a wonderful night... yet to be repeated again, by the way. Damian is doing very well and we're still enjoying every second of his little life. He cracks us up and even when he's being fussy at 3 AM, we appreciate every second.

(Mr. Peaceful Sleeper is sleeping again!) Enjoy the pictures... As always, they are in calendar order and are clickable for larger images.

"Work with me here..."

"...The camera is your friend..."

"...good, now show me sleepy...nice..."

"Nice work! Now show me happy! Love the camera..."

"Nice work! Job well done."

Cousin Rachel meets Damian and gives him a condescending pat on the head.

Rachel and Damian at peace

Rachel and Damian at war

Damian wins and celebrates with the universal heavy metal salute

Great-Grandmom calms Damian as he calls out Christine and Joseph

The happy cousins - and Damian still keeping a wary eye on Rachel

Even Mama can't distract him

Uh-oh, Damian is ready to go at it again!

But good ol' Great-Grandmom intervened and the Delaware trip ended well

Back in CT, Damian enjoyed reading about brown bears...

...white dogs, goldfish, red birds, and purple cats...

"What?! 'Purple cats?!' That impossibility makes me sad!"

Ok, so Damian is impossibly cute in this picture. But there's something that can make it so much better... Hmmm...

Ah, yes... that's it.

For some reason, he always seems to cock his head to smile. Cracks me up.

White is his color

His elbows look like pincushions or dinner rolls

Happy Mother's Day!

Damian's sad that Hoang is leaving him to go to work the first time

Mrs. Domestic: Homemade cookies, frying pan, washed dishes, rubber gloves, papoose...

Damian takes his first hike with his father and his lovely blue eyes

Evolution toe

My babies

"Hello? Operator! Yeah, see, this is the Bubbster see, get Jenkins on the blower, see! And make it snappy, my dame is waitin' see!"

"Had enough? Good. Now leave me alone to watch 'The Colbert Report', will ya?"

Continue on to Month 5 update!

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