February 13, 2018


I had some pretty (now-hilarious) grand plans to use this blog as Juliette's de facto baby album, since using an ACTUAL baby album didn't seem likely for me. But.. uh... yeah. I clearly did a SUPER GREAT JOB with that.

And now I'm a few weeks away from popping out another one.

And in the meantime, Juliette has grown into a very independent, very hilarious, and very on-the-go almost 18 month old:

(She is also eating or drinking in nearly every picture I have of her, since that is when she is most likely to be still enough for a non-blurry photo.)

(Also she still FREAKING LOVES eating. She eats everything! I know it won't last, but for now it's still so fun - she demands in on anything adults are eating in front of her, will try virtually everything, and then actually enjoys like 90% of it. She has eaten [and enjoyed] foie gras, beef tartare, octopus, eel, truffled quail eggs.. it's silly. And awesome.)

I don't know the best way to recap 18 or so months into one blog post, so I guess we'll just do some highlights from the past few months? Eesh. I'm so sorry, future kid[s] looking for details on your childhood[s]...

So! I left off at around 5 months. Juliette learned to sit up quite early, especially given that the weight of those cheeks probably made her awfully top heavy.

She was crawling by 6 months... but only backwards. So she got stuck under furniture a lot.

Once she figured out forwards though, it was on!

 ..except that almost immediately thereafter, she decided that bipdal was the only truly acceptable position for getting from point A to point B. Cue many months hunched over with sore backs while tiny fists gripped our fingers and Juliette stomped purposefully around, gleefully upright:

(I believe she had a grand total of like 3.5 teeth there, but still went to town on that corn on the cob)

The photo below doesn't serve a particular purpose in advancing this narrative, it's just a favorite from around this time.

Anyway! By around 11 months, she had had enough of our fingers and was tottering drunkenly around on her own like a fiend.

Then when she was 13 months old, in early October, we took her to Europe!

We had no idea what to expect from that trip and/or how bad of an idea it was going to be, but it was actually great. Baby jetlag is indeed terrible and should not be underestimated (especially since we were staying in places that were not compatible with any sort of cry it out methodology, so we had to just... stay awake with her so she wouldn't scream for the full two hours during which her little body was convinced it was Awake Time in the middle of the night).

But despite the jetlag excitement for the first several night, she did GREAT in terms of flexibility - we dropped her morning nap cold turkey in favor of touring around Paris each morning; she ate anything, anywhere, whenever we needed her to; we took a side trip to the Netherlands for a few days and she handled that like a champ; she really did sleep well, all things considered, AND even went back to her normal sleeping scheduled after just a day or two of adjustment once back in the States.

Back in the states, here she is at 14 months playing piano with one of her many boyfriends, William:

And then it was Halloween! I was *determined* to use my now-showing pregnancy as a component of a costume, since this will (in theory) be the only Halloween of my life during which I will be pregnant. So Juliette and I played up our respective bellies and went as truck driving rednecks. Clearly the obvious choice.

OK we should really speed things up here. Christmas happened again! It remains delightful with babies, especially since my MIL continues to outfit Juliette in hilarious/fantastic Santa themed outfits for the occasion:

Meanwhile, now, at nearly-18-months, she is talking non-stop. The only problem is we can only understand about 15% of it. She has a ton of individual words she can use properly in context. Many of them are food related, shockingly: 'nana, cheese, "ohnj" [orange], "bey" [berry], kakah [cracker]. "Bep," for those pouches of fruits/veggies, for some reason. She declares "CHEEZ" and demands you clink glasses with her (then drinks heartily, and goes "aahhhhh!!"). She has the basics like "mama," "mo" [more] and "bye bye" (although that has now been truncated to one sassy "byeee" more recently), "baw" [ball] and of course "NO!" She also has a weird affinity for accessories, and gets super hyped about 'ocks!!!! every day, as well as shuss! gacket! and hat!! (all of which are said, every time, with at least that many implied exclamation points). She LOVES taking medicine (!?) and calls it "mey-mey." She says "on" clearly, but has this little gutteral noise, like "ock" but with more phlegmy chutzpah, and that is used for virtually every other pronoun (off, out, open) so it's hard to know what she's requesting when she starts chanting it. And meanwhile, she is chattering in what sound like full sentences most of the time, we just have no idea how to decipher most of it.

She says "cat" and calls Oliver and Bella by name, although you have to reeallly know what to listen for with those ("Ah-ya-ya" and "BEH," approximately). She can tell you what sound several animals make, and can point to her eyes, nose, mouth, teeth, ears, belly, and toes when asked. She learned gentle ("gen-teh") very early because of our constant imploring of gentle pets to the cats, and says "peess" and "tack oo" very well - although please only when prompted, and thank you usually preemptively, when she wants something from you. Like she'll hold out a dirty tissue she just blew her nose with while announcing TAHK OO to notify you that you will be taking it from her. So polite. Ha.

And now, she can say "baby" (and knows what one is) and will point to my belly when we ask her where the new baby is... although I doubt she quite understands that a REAL BABY will be joining us, like... permanently.

And so! Speaking of this new baby! This pregnancy has been MILES easier and less fraught than Juliette's, thank the tiny baby jeebus. Although I am no less... giant. This is last week, at 34w.

I am now into week 35 and people have started asking when I'm due (clearly expecting me to say, like, "next week!") and then regularly following up with "OH. Are you sure there's just one in there??!" when I explain that I still have 5+ weeks to go. HAHA SO FUNNY YES YOU'RE TOTALLY THE ONLY PERSON WHO'S MADE THAT JOKE TODAY HARDY HAR.

(I also had my first aggressive belly-rub this weekend, out of both pregnancies! I went for a pedicure, and one of the nail salon ladies just swooped right in and didn't just like PAT my belly, but was legit RUBBING IT LIKE A LAMP. It was super weird and I did not like it.)

Anyway! I had a sono last week for the first time since... about 25 weeks, I guess? I was having my normal ob checkup and the doctor was measuring/feeling my belly and suddenly goes, "um, how big was your daughter?" When I told him (8 lbs, 10 oz) he nodded knowingly and said, "ah. yeah. you've got another big one in here." That was confirmed by last week's sonogram, which ADDITIONALLY confirmed that I've got another case of the Perhaps Too Much Fluids sloshing around in there, which is irritating because I once again tested negative for gestational diabetes (the usual cause of polyhydramnios) and because they assured me that having poly in my first pregnancy did not make me any more likely to develop it again this time. Meaning that if my fluid levels ARE actually in poly territory again, that would mean I developed it randomly BOTH TIMES despite having a ~2% chance each pregnancy.

I really can't complain though, because even if it is poly, is has presented FAR later in pregnancy this time, and has caused me far less grief. The excessive swelling of my extremities (that started by about 24 weeks last time!) has not been present this time, nor have the near-constant Braxton-Hicks contractions of the last pregnancy. With Juliette those kicked in by 24 weeks as well and were... kind of extreme. I regularly had an hour+ of B-H contractions 5 minutes apart with her. For WEEKS. And there was that awful thing where literally any time I was standing, I was contracting. Just one giant sustained contraction the entire time I was upright. That is not happening this time! It's much better!

This entire pregnancy really has just been... easier. I haven't had as many tests with stressful and questionable outcomes; I haven't been in nearly as much pain & discomfort; and this baby is far less... well, "violent" is the word that comes to mind. Carrying Juliette felt a bit like being assaulted from inside my own body for 10+ months. This just feels like.. I guess it feels like being pregnant. I understand now why most people don't dread pregnancy quite so much. They don't have to be terrible! This is obviously uncomfortable, but it's not this like dramatic Thing I Have To Put Myself Through that is 10 months of suffering.

Let's just hope that baby boy here isn't saving all of his methods of making us suffer until after he's out, I guess :)


  1. I've missed your posts, so even if they come full years in between, man, am I happy to see them. It helps that Juliette is adorable & that you're as funny & chill as ever. The imagery of a nail salon lady rubbing your belly like a genie lamp is... hilarious & uncomfortable. I'm so glad you're having an easier pregnancy this time around! Wishing you an easy labor & healthy baby. <3

  2. WELCOME BACK! I have missed you and your writing! LOVE your Halloween costumes and congrats on pregnancy #2! I found that carrying Wes was easier as well....however it may have been that you just have to be up and about all of the time and you can't just think about how tired you are/how sore your back is/etc. because you can't with a toddler running around. :-) Come back soon!

  3. The talking from this age until about three is JUST so cute. I love when they have their own little language. We still tease my 13-yo about how he said "Wee-oht" for the word "Fish". No idea where that came from but I wish frequently that I could go back and record him saying it.

  4. Well, hi there! So glad to see you pop back in! Congrats on the pregnancy, and on how adorable the kiddo is!

  5. Oh, this was just the most delightful post! Juliette is, basically, a wonderkid, yes? ALL the foods, all the babble, all the sass. Love!

    And I am SO DAMN GLAD that this pregnancy is considerably less fraught than the last one, what a huge relief for all parties involved!

    Hooray for updating (ahem).

  6. Juliette is so adorable and this whole post made me smile :)