Sunday, July 18, 2010

Ballard Of A Sunday Afternoon

The kid's big achievements of the week have been lifting up so she's standing flat on her feet and hands (is standing next?) and deftly honing her mood swings. The former is self-explanatory, right? So: The latter.

NJ has been a giggling, smiling, delightful delight for the past several days. Except when she's been a screaming, crying feral creature. Ever since we returned from Oregon she's done a lot of wailing to get attention. Lately, I haven't been clued in to the fact that her nap is over by the sweet, lilting sounds of her jibber-jabber over the monitor, as per usual; it's been zero-to-sixty crying. Same when we put her down -- crying, not talking. And as often as not, the middle of her nap has been punctuated by a short wailing burst. Nothing is really wrong, of course, but she's really perfecting her crying-as-attention-getting skills.

Otherwise, she's been a dream. Her latest move is to look at a toy, hold it up to me or The Wife, and flash a big, toothy, "I love this thing!" grin. ("Toothy" meaning "two tooth nubbins.") It's pretty cute. Also pretty cute: stream-of-consciousness jabbering that would make James Joyce proud. No longer does it come simply in spurts -- now she talks in sentences, only with words that make no sense (to me, at least). "Baden," "daden," "doy" and "ooooyyeeee," which is something of a wistful sigh, are her favorites. In her mind, they are probably all swear words directed at me.

Today was a big day for NJ. We went to a toy store to buy some new toys, toys that she can't have for another week when we fly to New England. Hopefully, brand new things to play with on the airplane will keep her more happily occupied than the tired old things she's currently got strewn all over the house. It'll buy me some time before I have to invoke the It's My Turn rule.

NJ with an anonymous toy store patron.
After that we hit Ballard for the street market, where NJ saw another girl in a stroller who has co-opted her "antique telephone" method of thumb-sucking (thumb in mouth, other hand clutching ear). We got lunch at the extremely kid-friendly Old Town Alehouse (the first place we took her to, I believe, back in the fall). Her wailing was on full display as she scarfed down a lunch of roast beef, fries and bread dipped in minestrone:

Nom nom nom. Waaahh! Nom nom nom. Waaahh! Nom nom nom ...

Finally, at the end of the meal, NJ gave it her hearty seal of approval.

I'll smile for the camera, but I won't let you see my tooth nubbins.

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