Tuesday, August 31, 2010

This is Why I Don't Read the News.

I try to avoid news. I used to be a news addict: pick up free newspapers to read on the tube, check out news websites several times a day, catch the news on TV and the radio. Nowadays I try to avoid the news like the plague.

I appreciate the importance of the news, I just find it hard to digest. Especially since there is so little I can do about the stuff that upset me. You read about war, disasters, murder and accidents and often the victims are helpless little children. As a parent I find it much harder to hear news about children who were killed and/or tortured by their parents or even just died in a stupid and random accident.

I understand it's important to publish those stories as it will make many careless parents act more responsibly (though it must be acknowledged that not all accidents are preventable, sometimes it's just rotten luck), but I don't need it. Trust me. I'm super careful with Blake and I would really rather not see pictures of adorable toddlers who died horribly and read about their grief-stricken parents. Pass.

Today I decided to sneak a peek at the news and I saw this. It's a very difficult to watch video of a girl throwing puppies into a river. I couldn't watch past the first twelve seconds. It made me ask myself: is that why I checked the news? I already know there are nasty people who inflict suffering on others, human or otherwise. I guess it's eye-opening for some people, but not to me.

So if it's OK with you, I would rather cuddle with my son, husband and doggies and pretend that this little bubble of love and joy is all that exists in the world. At least for most of time. I know that I can't cut myself completely from the world around me, but occasionally I'm going to try.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Food for Thought

This picture is from last summer, but Blake still likes ice-cream.

I find myself fascinated by Blake's eating habits, his likes and dislikes. They are so random and constantly change. We used to be proud of his wide palette, but lately he started being more picky. If before he'll try anything and only spit out food he genuinely didn't like, now he often judges food before even tasting it based on its appearance and smell.

His favourites are chips, rice, fresh tomatos, chicken and all kinds of fruit. He also likes many dim sum menu items, from crumbly pork pies to gooey shrimp pancakes. Anything outside of that is guess work and trial and error. He used to like the toddler ready made meals and devour them, but now he wouldn't touch them. Some pasta he likes and some he reject insistently, and I suspect it all comes down to the shape of the pasta.

Miron hates chocolate which made it really easy for me to stock up without worrying about anyone looting my stash. Unfortunately for both of us, Blake adores chocolate. Miron, being a chocolate hater, is a persecuted minority shunned by society and he hoped to find a kindred spirit in his son. I'm disappointed because I can't pig out on chocolate in front of Blake without having to share and if I don't want him to eat too much chocolate, I can't eat too much chocolate. You know when people say how they have to make sacrifices for their children? That's one of those sacrifices right there.

Blake loved his formula bottles and I was worried about how to wean him off them. But then one day a couple of months before his second birthday he rejected the bottle and that was it. Not only that, he doesn't like any milk-based drinks, not even chocolate drinks. Yet, he loves cereal and eats it almost every morning. I just have to feed it to him with a fork because if I use a spoon he'd spit the excess milk through pursed lips.

It's very frustrating to make something for him and have him refuse to even touch it. I can't leave him hungry so I end up making him something I know he likes. 

At least Blake is quite naturally balanced. He loves chocolate and cookies, but he adores apples, bananas, clementines and strawberries just as much, if not more. He likes playing games and watching videos on his iPod, but he'd drop it in a second to go play outside in the garden.

At least I'm easy to cater for. I'm like a garbage disposer. I'll eat pretty much anything. 

Except for Turkish Delight. Bleargh.


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Summer Games

The dogs are working on their tan. I think Leo overdid it...

I'm a summer person. I'm not crazy about hot weather, it's the longer hours of light that I love. When it gets dark before 4pm it's beyond depressing. When you work nine to five it makes all the difference. In the winter it feels as if you stayed late for overtime when you are greeted by pitch dark as you step out of the office, but in the summer when you have another four or five hours of light after you finish work it feels as if you only worked half a day. In fact you keep exactly the same hours, but it feels so completely different.

That doesn't mean I don't enjoy the dark. I take the dogs late at night because I know there's no chance of meeting other dogs and they can run around and blow off some steam. There's something very relaxing about walking for twenty minutes in a dark park before going to bed. I don't even need a flashlight anymore as I know all the paths and routes by heart now (except for that one time I almost fell into the stream and called Miron to come rescue me because my leg hurt so bad that I thought I must have broken it though I didn't). I enjoy darkness, as long as it doesn't fall too soon.

I actually look forward to December 21, the shortest day of the year, because I then know that at least now the days may be still very short, but they're getting a little longer every day. It offers me some comfort. Yes, I'm a bit crazy like that.

Leo watches the boys play from my study's window.

And now the summer is more than halfway through. August has been quite chilly so far. Blake's long sleeves PJs have come out of retirement earlier than expected.

The garden is getting a lot of use by Blake and the woofers. As part of the new routines for the dogs they are now not allowed to poop anywhere they want. With the garden no longer being a minefield of poo it's much more fun to spend time in it. Blake enjoys just walking around and watch the dogs play, while the dogs chase each other and play fight. Blake likes the garden so much that he even insisted on going out after it rained a lot and the grass was soaking wet. He then rolled on the wet grass in sheer delight. Obviously we went from there straight to the shower with a brief pit stop in the laundry room... It's those moments that remind me that even though life isn't perfect, I am very very lucky.

And now it's bubbles time!

Bubbles are AMAZING.


Monday, August 09, 2010

Humans: Endangered Species

Alveda King, Martin Luther King Jr's niece, spoke at an anti gay rally and said that legalizing gay marriage will lead to "extinction" and referred to it as "genocide". 

Because we all know that two people living in a committed relationship is exactly like systematically eradicating an entire culture. You know, the world's biggest problem at the moment is a severe lack of humans. Can hardly find any of those anymore. 

Obviously the fact that we, a married gay couple, brought a child into the world means that we're actually helping humanity to survive in the face of complete obliteration. We can look at all our childless straight friends with contempt for their utter disregard to our survival. I think fertile people who don't reproduce should be sentenced to death because they're just wasting space.

Tough in Alveda King's case I would actually recommend not reproducing. In the long run humanity needs to favour quality over quantity.


Monday, August 02, 2010

Self Dunking

On the weekend we went to pick up the dogs we stayed at a nice little hotel with a swimming pool. I wanted to film Blake do his self-dunking for a long time and finally Miron was there with me to take the video. At our usual pool Blake can stand at the shallow end and all he has to do to self-dunk is to bend his knees and go down. The pool at the hotel was deep all around, but Blake found that he can use the little ladder to push himself up and down.

He's so cute and clever, if I say so myself.