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2008-06-07 - 10:48 a.m. entry from stl...

Susi and I have been back at the home front since Monday afternoon, and we are having a lovely time - I am reminiscing about hot and humid St Louis summers from my childhood while Susi is being ooo'ed and ah'ed at by family and strangers alike.

The flight from Vancouver to St. Louis was really quite easy - I nursed her on the way up and the way down and there was no crying. Plus, there were no passengers in the two middle seats, which made a HUGE difference. Susi could sprawl out on the seats and kick and coo to her little heart's content.

The Chicago-StL leg was another story. The airport was hot. The plane was hot. We were crammed into a full little plane like sardines, with mom and baby on the aisle. I felt vaguely (well, no, COMPLETELY) on show as I pulled out a boob to nurse her. And she wanted nothing to do with it, because what she REALLY wanted was for me to walk her. Not possible when your hot plane is sitting on the runway waiting to take off. The child SCREAMED for 35 minutes. I had one of those moments where I sincerely wanted to run off the plane, and say, thank you, I think I'll just live the rest of my life in Chicago.

But after 35 minutes, she finally screamed herself into complete exhaustion and when from screaming one second to complete limp silence in the next.

I didn't move.

I was afraid to move.

Don't wake sleeping giants.

Or babies, as the case may be.

The flight attendants tiptoed around us. And the kind grandmotherly lady in the seat in front of me said, "you poor dear, I wish that I could hold her a while for you. Your arms must be aching."

I smiled back at her, and reiterated that I wasn't planning on moving!

So we arrived in hot and sweaty St.L. and came home. And Susi slept the sleep of the dead that night. Actually, she's been doing quite well with her naps even though she's in a strange place. She's sleeping right now, in fact. But the teething has been terrible for her. The homeopathic meds are not working so well - I guess one of us just doesn't believe enough. tylen0l has been the only relief.

Anyway, have a baby has definitely raised my polls with my niece, who has carried on her first full conversation with me since birth, I think. I think it's the baby - my brother thinks it's just a matter of my niece getting older and being able to talk to people. Whichever way, she and I are getting along very well, as opposed to mutually existing like we did in the past.

My niece had her birthday last week - the girl had four birthday parties. Wow. She also had two dance recitals in a nearby high school auditorium this week. I was let to believe that these dance recitals were going to be about as fun as shoving bamboo shoots under my fingernails and setting them aflame. But actually, the program was changed considerably from previous years. The shows were short and sweet.

Halfway through, we went out into the high school hallways to put Susi to sleep by rolling her back and forth down the abandoned school corridor. We got the best comment I've received all week, from a sports coach who had been giving the most excruciatingly boring speech I have ever heard to a bunch of glassy-eyed high school jocks and their parents in the nearby cafeteria.

The boring old coach came out and said to my mother, "That is the most beautiful baby I have ever seen...what's his name?" Oh well.

Then there was yesterday when the saleslady at dillards department store asked me if Susi was my granddaughter. OKAY, I'M NOT THAT OLD PEOPLE. I begin to understand why people never commented on my pregnancy even when I was 8 months along and looked like a beached whale. There's a faux pas for ya, if'n I weren't pregnant. Now we just need to clue into the fact that 39-year-olds really can have babies....

So all is going well here. In fact, just for the reminiscing about St. Louis weather portion of this week...we had two tornado warnings yesterday. Warnings mean that the funnel clouds have been spotted, and one should get off the highway and search for cover. We made it home and unplugged all of the major appliances except for the TV - and watched the local news meteorology geeks have a blast playing with all of their newfangled computer storm chasing equipment. They were very cute. And I loved watching the storms come through. Made me all misty eyed.

Okay - so - it's time for me to get showered and dressed so that I'm ready for Susi's next audience.

ooo - one last thing, Susi now has her own social security number, and the card is being mailed to my brother in two weeks. (can't mail it to canada - technical computing problem with the forms). That was your usual great great fun experience with US bureaucracy - but as always, people are nicer in St. Louis, so it was a clever idea to get it done here.

And now I'm off. I'm looking forward to catching up with all of your lives once I have my own computer again.

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