"In over my head"

Jun. 22nd, 2017 12:15 am
rosefox: Steven's three guardians all ruffle his hair together as he grins (parenting)
[personal profile] rosefox
Dear fellow caregivers for toddlers: I would love advice on two distinct things.

1) What makes a good potty? The number of variations is overwhelming. We want something pretty simple, I think: looks like a toilet, no branded characters, doesn't play music, sits on the floor, is basically a bucket with a seat. In the more distant future we'll need one that folds up or goes over the toilet seat or something, for when we're on the road, but right now this is just for Kit to examine and contemplate and get used to the idea of.

2) Like most 18-month-olds, Kit is full of energy. Unlike most 18-month-olds, Kit can barely walk unassisted and can't run or jump. They've only just started climbing around on the most low-level playground equipment and are very uncertain; they can get up five steps to the top of the baby slide but haven't yet sorted out how to slide down it. When they can't burn off all that energy, they get very agitated and fussy. How do we help them get something like vigorous exercise on the weekends? So far my only idea is to take their walker wagon to the park so they can toddle along at a fairly fast clip for longer distances than our apartment allows—there's a good smoothly paved straightaway there—but that's a pain because the sidewalk between here and there is very uneven and narrow, so I'd have to figure out some way to carry the (heavy, bulky, non-folding) wagon while pushing Kit in the stroller, and that may surpass my own physical limitations. Maybe a lightweight folding medical-style walker? Is that a ridiculous expense for a kid who probably won't need it anymore by the end of the summer? And what do we do when it's not park weather? The nearest real play space for kids is the Brooklyn Children's Museum and it's kind of a haul from here—two buses, and you have to fold the stroller on the bus. They can only crawl around our apartment for so long.

EDIT: We did have a great dance party to the B-52s on Sunday—their pure sincerity is a perfect match for toddler sincerity, plus a good beat—so I should remember that's an option for indoor days. Friends on Twitter and elsewhere also suggested walking while holding Kit's hands/arms; playing follow-the-leader movement games ("Stretch WAAAAAY up high! Now bend WAAAAAY down low!") or doing movement to songs; setting up a tumbling mat and big foam blocks to climb on if we can get some that fit Kit's room (need to measure the open floor space); getting a cheap flimsy lightweight doll stroller to use as a walker in the park.

I'd really appreciate any suggestions on either or both fronts!

Recent Astronomical Efforts

Jun. 21st, 2017 10:24 pm
wcg: (Default)
[personal profile] wcg
The Andromeda Galaxy



Also, Saturn was recently at opposition. Here's what I was able to manage.

kshandra: The Burning Man effigy, lit in blue neon, arms by his sides; an orange half-moon is visible over his shoulder. (BurningMan)
[personal profile] kshandra
Bear with me on this one...



  • It's one hell of a party song.
  • I associate it (still) with watching World Series of Poker coverage on cable.
  • The first year I drove to Burning Man on my own, it was the last song I heard on terrestrial radio before I lost signal heading into Gerlach.

Notes

Jun. 20th, 2017 08:26 am
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
[personal profile] elainegrey
* Quaker History Roundtable: 20th Century American Quakerism - 9 hours video of the proceedings available at this time.

* Carolina wrens apparently make multiple nest starts before deciding on one. There was nesting activity at the same time in a hanging basket at the front. I just saw one hop from the nest, so i hope that's their choice. Their territory is 1/2 - 3/4 acres per some random website, it's conceivable two pairs would be about the house, but i'll assume it's the same pair.

* The cardinals fledged over the weekend. Sure didn't look old enough to manage that on Friday! I'm hoping they fledged and it wasn't depredation. I haven't seen Slugger or Louisa for a bit. -- Wait, there they are, foraging out my window. Hmm. I suppose they could have guided the fledglings into the woods where there's more cover?

* We had a day lily bloom yesterday at lunch but it was eaten by the time we went out for the dog walk. I suspect the young buck that cantered by my view.

* The peanut plants that were on the corner were nibbled, but not the ones more bounded by marigolds.

* We had over two inches of rain last evening and overnight. Some of the corn and the poppies are knocked over. I'm hoping that they'll lift themselves, but i suspect i'll need to stake up the poppies and reset the corn.

* I'm not focusing on work as much as i expect of myself. Trying to be gentle and observe.

* [ETA] Personal email box management seems to be effective. Struggling to get a few things NOT marked as spam, but i think i've come up with effective sorting that keeps different response efforts segregated.
kshandra: The Sacred Chao from the Principia Discordia, in gold, superimposed on a Bisexual Pride flag (Bi Chao)
[personal profile] kshandra
And since I'm running headlong into Pride prep now, let's keep it on message:

Tree of Heaven... NOT.

Jun. 18th, 2017 06:47 pm
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
[personal profile] elainegrey
So, just to assure [personal profile] randomdreams that his experience with Ailanthus isn't unique, there are small sprouts coming up everywhere in the septic field. Copper sulfate in the line hasn't discouraged it at all.

Fie.

Mimosa tree seedlings are everywhere, as well.

There's a cluster of non-native thistles beside the road maybe a quarter mile away. I so want to apply a flame thrower. And the neighboring lot also has a big patch of vinca.

The latest issue of "Conservation Gardener" from the UNC arboretum has an introduction from the editor that described their battling with invasives on their small patch of North Carolina. The challenge was observed, the drop-in-the-bucket-ness, but the editor concluded that it's the way forward. Everyone doing their bit.

(no subject)

Jun. 18th, 2017 11:13 am
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
[personal profile] elainegrey
I've spent some obsessive time developing filters for my personal email. I had had filters, but many were made long enough ago that i didn't really know what they were doing. I tried to name these more clearly. Meanwhile, in my "miscellaneous" folder i had 200 journal comments i meant to reply to, some from a year ago. Um, not going to happen - i mean to reply, but i think it's better to work on going forward, not the past. So all those went into the archive and now i "only" have 100 emails lingering.

More on digital backlog )

Friday evening i took Carrie over to my folks so she could run in their pasture - and run she did. Mom committed her usual "here, take all this" but this time the book was one i remember dearly from childhood: Euell Gibbons' Stalking the Wald Asparagus. I didn't know until just now that he was a Quaker, but the resonance with my inclinations becomes more clear. I'm tickled.

Saturday was muggy. One drips working outside, even without much exertion. I planted my peanut and melon seedlings, moved marigolds from thick plantings to other areas, and dug  up the last of my Huckleberry potatoes. I will buy those again. Definitely a good producer! I hope for the marigolds to be deer deterrents: no nibbling on those. I'll check to see if the peanut starts made it through the night. I also planted melons -- "Minnesota midget" muskmelons -- but perhaps i should add some seeds as the article i just found said they don't transplant well.

I made a "potato salad" seasoned with lemon and mint, inspired by a NYTimes recipe. I tried to follow the pressure cooker recipe for cooking the potatoes: i think i could have cooked them less than the 7 minutes. Also, i wasn't thinking and vented the steam inside. Next time i'll carry the pot out and vent it outside. Despite the potatoes not holding shape, the flavors were a pleasant change from the usual mustard or mayo based potato salad preparations -- and, let me tell you, we do have plenty of mint.

I'm watching a pair of Carolina wrens build a nest in my "greenhouse" -- a rack of shelves for seedlings that comes with a clear plastic cover -- long since removed -- and is now covered with a sheet. I've mixed feelings about letting them nest there. It's tempting to watch them -- and let Edward watch them, but it is so close to comings and goings and i need to water those plants. But not so much the ones on the top where most of the nesting work is going on -- a seedling persimmon, some seedling button bushes.

We do have a go pro, we could be watching them....
kshandra: A spoof of the Guitar Hero logo, featuring a home karaoke machine (Karaoke Hero)
[personal profile] kshandra
I was struggling with what to choose here...and then I picked the icon for this post and the decision was obvious.

Currently reading

Jun. 15th, 2017 11:50 pm
wcg: (Default)
[personal profile] wcg


Good book. Recommended.

Here's the NY Times review. which includes this snippet:


Given their pervasive influence today, it is worth remembering that in the 1930s, before either reached the heights of reputation, both men were in disgrace. Churchill was a political pariah, alienated from his own Conservative Party by his opposition to the appeasement of Hitler. Frederic Maugham, Lord Chancellor in the national government, suggested that Churchill should be “shot or hanged.” Similarly, when the socialist Orwell wrote “Homage to Catalonia” (1938), a coruscating indictment of both left and right during the Spanish Civil War, he was denounced by many on the British left. His usual publisher, the Communist fellow-traveler Victor Gollancz, refused even to put out the book.
tiger_spot: (glare)
[personal profile] tiger_spot
I have a book recommendation, mostly for parents but also for people who like communicating with humans in general.

How to Talk so Little Kids Will Listen is a really excellent update of the classic How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk. It's streamlined to focus on younger kids, and it is chock full of detailed, specific examples of multiple approaches to solving common problems. It is made of humor and compassion and good ideas.

Little Kids is by the daughters of the authors of How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk, so they've got the kid's perspective as well as the parent's perspective for many techniques. The "what not to do" sections are much more relatable for the modern parent. How to Talk was so influential to current American parenting styles that a lot of what it's arguing against is foreign to me. The what to do advice is all still good -- if you haven't read the older book I recommend it too -- but the assumed mindset of the reader can be a little offputting and it's nice to have a version that feels more like it's talking to me.

More critters

Jun. 15th, 2017 01:13 pm
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
[personal profile] elainegrey
Watching Louisa & Slugger care for their three nestlings, i think it's impressive that Cardinals have such an easy time managing diaper changing. They feed the nestling and then carry of a little white sack of waste.

I wish i could be sure they were getting all the bugs from my garden.

Particularly the scarily large spider. (Although he's probably doing me some favors. *shudder*)

--== ∞ ==--

In Carrie news, this morning she did some lunging at Luigi accompanied by a bark. Water bottle time. Now Christine's sure Carrie will never return to the front room.

Critters

Jun. 15th, 2017 07:05 am
elainegrey: Inspired by Grypping/gripping beast styles from Nordic cultures (Default)
[personal profile] elainegrey
Tuesday evening i harvested some very nice potatoes. Wet purple potato skins seem almost iridescent with a sheen that seems to change in the light. I stopped harvesting because a huge wolf spider seemed unwilling to move along. I'll pitchfork that hay out of the way tonight.

I saw a different doe yesterday, who moved through the yard rather quickly. I need to tweak the game camera because i think a movement like that deer's that would trigger the camera, but the delay would just capture an empty yard.

Yesterday evening as we watched some show, Carrie bounded of the hassock, baying alarm, "Foes at the door! Foes at the door!" Just beyond the deck was a young buck, maybe a year old. He clearly heard the ruckus, but wasn't alarmed, just alert. Carrie continued to growl and bark and warn. A bit territorial, not hunting. It was sweet to be able to observe the young deer, although i wonder how wise it is for it to be inured to barking. (Admittedly, we have double pane windows and good sound proofing here so i'm not sure how loud Carrie seemed to the deer.)

This morning i went out in the dawn. Flitting overhead were two bats: oh, more please!
kshandra: Text: "I should perhaps be disturbed by the MASSIVE NEED I have for approval of strangers on the Internet." (Default)
[personal profile] kshandra
How 'bout a song that actually WAS played at my wedding?

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