Sunday, August 30, 2009

Eeeeeeyyyyyyyyyhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!! (Sadie's Favorite Sound)

Sadie has this little sound that she makes when she's annoyed. It's a very high pitched "ehhh" sound that starts and as a squeal and gets louder and clearly expresses that she disagrees with whatever is going on. She makes it numerous times throughout the day. Today she made it when I told her that she couldn't lift a heavy metal flap to touch a power outlet outside. She made it when I tried to get her to eat her lunch. And she made it when it was time to get out of the bathtub. It's a funny little sound and it's hard not to laugh when she makes it.

Bath time has now become one of the funniest times of the day (and also the time when she makes her "annoyed" sound the most frequently). Sadie knows that she is supposed to sit down in the bath tub. It is the main bathtub rule. It is also the bathtub rule that has to be enforced the most frequently (every ten to fifteen seconds on average). The scene plays out in this way. Sadie stands up. I say "okay so are you ready to get out then?" Sadie squeals. I say, "if you don't want to get out you need to sit down." She sits down. Sometimes. Other times she pretends to sit down by bending her knees and not really sitting down. Apparently she doesn't think that I can tell the difference between real sitting and fake sitting. It doesn't really matter whether it's real sitting or fake sitting though, because within ten seconds she's going to be standing up again and I'm going to be giving her the option of sitting down or getting out. The cycle continues. It's amazing how many times we can have the same conversation during a fifteen minute bath!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Teeth Hurt!

Sadie is clumsy, stumbling around, falling frequently. She is absolutely exhausted and I've been trying for the last forty-five minutes to get her to go to sleep. She has been squealing and thrashing and making it clear that she does not want to close her pretty little eyes. That behavior, in combination with biting me twice today while she was nursing (and biting Nani once today on the finger) let's us know what's going on. Her fourth tooth on the bottom is coming in (eighth total tooth). She is one unhappy camper. So tonight my blog will be short. Sadie needs Mommy!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Animals, A Carousel and a Big Bath Tub

We've been making an effort to keep Sadie busy each day, because she seems to get reckless when she's bored. Today we drove the hour over to the county fair and Sadie was absolutely astounded by seeing the actual animals that she points out and makes us name in her books. We saw (in no particular order) cows, sheep, goats, pigs, roosters, chickens, turkeys, ducks and bunnies (I'm sure I'm leaving some animal out). Sadie scared the goat when she rushed up to the fence, but was a bit overwhelmed when we got our picture taken with the Best In Show Steer, which belongs to one of the girls who goes to our church.

After we saw the animals we headed over to the rides and Sadie and I went on the carousel. It was a little scary. The carousel we rode on in Boston was very slow compared to the super fast carousel today (I've decided that I prefer slow). The carousel operator stepped onto the carousel next to us when it started and said that he would stop it and let us get off if she got scared. He definitely seemed to think she would be scared (I would have too if I had known that it was going to be trucking along at 25 mph... my humble estimate.). The carousel started and Sadie's beautiful blue horse started bobbing up and down, as I clung to her to make sure that she didn't fall off, and I felt Sadie start to shake. I was trying to see her face when the carousel operator said "well, I guess she's not scared" and stepped off. Finally I managed to see her face and she was laughing. Hysterically. The super fast carousel was the high point of Sadie's day.

At dinner Sadie made another leap in communication when she signed the word for "more" when we were having rice pudding for dessert. She's so smart!

Another first today was having a bath in the big bath tub instead of in the baby tub. Instead of getting bored after five minutes she refused to get out. She kept standing up and then Nani would say "okay, are you ready to get out. If you aren't you have to sit down." and she would squeal (in a very annoyed tone) before sitting back down. Finally we had to drag her out because she would have stayed in their all night. And now she is safely asleep. We had a long day!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

One Bruised Baby

Sadie's legs look likes she's been in a fight. We went on a walk this morning and she refused to hold my hand. She strolled down the driveway and she headed over to Nini and Gigi's house (with me trailing behind her to make sure that she stayed out of trouble). Two crashes later she had arrived at the bottom of their staircase. At least when she goes up stairs she reaches for my hand.

After watching Grumpa work with one of the horses, Nani walked with Sadie back up to the house to get her stroller. Sadie refused to walk up the driveway and instead headed over to Nini and Gigi's even though Nini was in town and Gigi was sitting with me down at the horse corral. Nani started to walk down the driveway, thinking that Sadie would follow her (and keeping a close eye on her to make sure she was with her). Sadie stopped and smiled her sweetest smile. Then she pretended to follow Nani, but at the last minute she took off at a sprint down the dirt road. Nani caught her.

While I've been writing this blog Grumpa brought Sadie's car seat in to make a few adjustments. After lengthening the bottom strap Grumpa put Sadie in it to test the length. After sitting in it for a minute Nani came over and asked Sadie if she wanted up. Sadie said "up" (a new word!). Since the adjustments were finished Grumpa put the car seat on the ground. Sadie walked over, sat in it and started working to put her arms through the straps. After Grumpa helped her get her arms in she started trying to snap the buckles. Now she's getting in and out of it, laughing. We're going to have to get her one of those little cute chairs at Target. Still, knowing Sadie, she would still prefer the car seat (only when it's in the house... not in the car!).

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Sadie's Schedule

Busy, busy, busy. Sadie is always moving and always wants to be playing. Yesterday I was feeling industrious and made a little schedule. We managed to stick to the schedule until 10:30 when Sadie, the baby who does not take morning naps these days, curled up and went to sleep. When she woke up we had lunch and went swimming, before going into town. We stopped at the library, went to the new ice cream parlor in town for sorbet and then walked around the farmers' market in town.

The schedule was helpful in one way; it gave me ideas of what we had done and what we hadn't done and she stayed very busy (and is now passed out on my lap). The to-do list went something like this: Breakfast, Nature Walk, playing outside, playing upstairs in the play room, nap, snack (which she refused to eat), playing with toys, lunch, a visit to Nini and Gigi's, swimming on the porch in the little pool (for an hour!), driving in to town, returning books at the library (Sadie did not want me to put the books in the slot and tried to grab them out of it), picking out new books, ice cream at Johnny's, the Farmers' Market, driving home, reading the library books, playing, stealing Nani's hand towels from the kitchen, making a fort behind Grumpa's chair and hiding the towels and library books there, dinner, bath, stories, bedtime.

On the nature walk Sadie, who is getting very steady on her feet, actually walked most of the lap on the dirt road loop that goes by the cabin. It's a third of a mile and I think that's what tired her out so that she took a morning nap!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Rules, Rules, Rules

Sadie can now climb up onto one of the chairs in the living room by herself. She thinks that this is one of the greatest developments in the history of her entire life. There are so many things that a chair can be used as. She can pretend to ride it like a horse. She can use it to get to the table that is behind the chair that she can't reach on her own, even on her tippie toes. And of course, the chair is the greatest launch pad that she's found yet. She can fall of the chair in a number of different ways. And Mommy is always diving to save her. So far Mommy has been successful and Sadie hasn't hit the ground. Mommy is also being impossible and insisting that Sadie sit when she's on the chair. What Mommy just doesn't seem to realize is that that takes all of the fun out of chair sitting.

Sadie is discovering that Mommy takes the fun out of a lot of different activities in that way. No jumping off the stairs. Instead Mommy insists that Sadie hold her hand all the way down the stairs. No playing on the hearth. No pulling the kitties tails. There are so many rules and so few hours in the day to find new ways to break them.

Of course Mommy doesn't say "no" straight out... she finds tricky ways of saying it! Like that makes it any better!

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Busy Day at Turtle Bay!

We took Sadie into town to see the birds and butterflies this morning at Turtle Bay. The highlight of the trip was driving through three construction stops, where we waited and waited and Sadie was able to stare at excavators and bulldozers to her hearts content (and we've learned so many of the names of the different tractors from her books). Tractor and truck books are still very high up on her lists of favorite things. The other day I actually thought she was playing with her fischer price doll house and was shocked. Then Nani pointed out that she was sitting in front of the doll house with her back to me, but she had her toy taxi on her lap. As you can see, Sadie is really into cars, trucks and tractors these days.

Back to our day... The highlight of the trip was supposed to be the bird area at Turtle Bay. We were the only ones in the bird area (other then staff) when we walked in and there were dozens (if not hundreds) of birds in the netted off enclosure. They give you a little stick of bird food to hold, so very quickly I had a thirty pound baby on my right hip and two birds fighting, attached to my left hand. Sadie was only slightly impressed. A giant red bird landed on my shoulder and Sadie watched with evident disinterest.

After visiting the birds we headed over to the butterfly house. Sadie watched the butterflies and then I stopped her from stomping one that made the mistake of landing too close to her foot (they discourage that). According to the little sheet with butterfly names it was (and luckily still is) a buckeye butterfly.

She was ecstatic about the fish in the main area. It's always her favorite exhibit. She gives the fish kisses through the thick glass. And now she is refusing to go to bed! So I need to convince her that it really is time for bed!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Not the Baby Spoon!

Tonight at dinner I figured out a new way to get Sadie to open her cute little mouth. I just need to put her food on a grown up fork (or spoon). When she sees her little baby spoons these days she clamps her mouth shut and refuses to eat. Apparently the brightly colored plastic lets her know that it's baby food, and she doesn't want to have anything to do with baby food. The best disguise for baby food seems to be... big people utensils.

She is a big fan of milk and insists on drinking an entire glass of organic whole milk with every meal. How can something so small drink so much milk?

Now I need to convince her it really is bedtime. She was asleep but she realized Mommy wasn't, so she's up now.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Oh the Horror!

Oh the horror. We came home from an trip to get ice cream at the new pizza place in town this afternoon and Sadie started to run around Nani and Grumpa's living room. She headed out into the hallway and turned to the right. And then I heard it. The most terrifying shriek. It wasn't a "hurt" type of cry. For a moment I wondered if Sadie had come face to face with the brown bear that ran in front of our car halfway down the driveway yesterday. But he couldn't be in the house! Sadie came barreling around the corner, past Nani who had come out of the study and stopped in the middle of the hallway. Then she shrieked again.

And now to uncover the trauma of all traumas. The gate that leads up the stairs was (gasp)... Open. We had left it open when we went into town to make it easier for the cats to go up and down. When I came home I forgot to close it (there are also gates on the den, bathroom and back porch, but they're pretty much always up). Sadie knows that it's supposed to be up when she's in the house and panicked when she saw that it was down. At least she didn't decide to head up the stairs by herself! She is definitely at an age where things are supposed to be a certain way and the gate is apparently one of those things!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Accident Prone

Sadie took a nap today, but after hours of playing hard, she probably needed another. However, these days she resists naps as if her life depends upon it. She will fight tooth and nail to keep her little eyes from closing. I think she's afraid that she's going to miss something crucial while she's asleep (like Grumpa using his tractor to clean the horse corrals). However today a second nap would definitely have been a good thing. Before dinner her large motor skills went downhill fast. She picked up a pillow (that was one of four pillows blocking the hearth) and proceeded to fall, headfirst against the hearth. After the crying stopped I sat down with her to read one of her library books. She sat and listened and then stood up and grabbed her bunny blanket. She pulled hard on the blanket, but it didn't come free of the chair and she toppled over again, this time smacking headfirst into the corner of the wall. Ouch! So she has two matching red marks, one on either side of her forehead. Poor little thing!

We did spent at least an hour cooling off in the pool, which is probably why we're so tired. But she's still resisting bedtime, so I need to convince her that, after 8 hours of bouncing off the walls, it's time for bed!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Bad Mama?!?!?

Sadie is a wild woman today. She is still bouncing off the walls. It is long past her bedtime. She was wild when this picture was taken earlier today and the wildness has continued, unabated, right up until this moment (it is, as I type this, 8:33pm... An hour past bedtime). Sadie no longer has a concept of bedtime. She is a baby who does not need sleep.

She did burst out with a new phrase today. After her swim she did not want to get dressed. I was wrestling her into her clothing when she burst out with a new phrase. She said "bad mama!" Nani and I both looked at each other in disbelief. Where did she even learn that word?!?!

I have a suspicion, but I'm not sure it's right. Sadie has a book that has a character in it named Bad Little Bunny. That's the only time I think she's even heard the word "bad!"

Now I better convince her to go to bed. It's getting late!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Bubbles

Now it's not just the sun parading around as the moon that is upsetting Sadie's reading time. It's bubbles too. Tonight, while we were reading one of Sadie's favorite bedtime books (which she's actually had a bit of an attitude about recently because it only has tiny pictures of a crescent moon and Sadie prefers giant full moons) she became very excited. There was a picture of a mommy and a baby fish. And there were bubbles. Sadie got a huge smile. She pointed to the bubbles.

I had a choice. I thought about saying moon. That was what she wanted.

She pointed again. Mommy is so slow sometimes. Finally I said "bubble Sadie. Those are bubbles." There was a pause. Sadie raised her little hand and pointed a second time. Clearly I hadn't understood what she was pointing at. She tried again. "Bubble." A third time. "Bubble." And once more, "A bubble." I turned the page quickly. She turned it back. I held the book up and continued to read it. Sadie tried to climb my arm. I managed to speed read the rest of the story while she continued to hang on my arm to turn the page back.

Then we went back and looked at the moon.

I mean bubbles.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Be Gentle!

We love cats. We really do. It's just that we have a hard time being gentle with them. We want to touch them so much that sometimes we try to touch them with our feet. And our feet are seldom gentle.

So Sadie basically spent the day chasing Delilah around, with Nani and I intervening whenever Delilah got cornered. When we tell Sadie to be gentle she gets really upset, and then tries to be gentle, for about ten seconds, until she forgets and gets excited and starts giggling in a hysterical tone. Then she tries to grab the cat, or poke her nose and has to be told to be gentle again. No matter how softly I say it she acts like she's in trouble and her little lip starts to stick out and her eyes are sad.

After several hours of this Nani took Delilah upstairs to rest. Once Delilah was out of sight Sadie's lip started to tremble. Next she collapsed on the ground in a heap. I picked her up and tried to cuddle her, but she didn't want to look at my face and only screamed louder, so finally I set her down. She immediately got up and walked over to her giant Tinkerbell blanket. She picked it up, and charged across the room to the front door. Then she grabbed the door knob and twisted and pulled. I heard the lock click. Hysterical tears. A pile of crying baby on the floor. I walked over and tried to pick her up, but she was not having it.

I tried another strategy. I went back into the living room and pretended to cry. I said "I don't know where my baby is! She's trying to run away!" Less then ten seconds later a little hand touched my cheek. I looked up and saw Sadie with a huge smile on her face.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Happy Birthday to...

Happy Birthday to Daddy!

Today is Sadie's Dad's birthday! We had cake and opened presents. I'm not sure that Sadie understood that it was Daddy's birthday. I think she thought it was her birthday again. After all, the cake was right next to her high chair and it only had one candle on it. And everybody knows that Sadie is one year old! She was pretty sure that it must be her birthday! She even wore a ruffly dress and tasted some of the whipped cream on Daddy's birthday waffles.

And Sadie now has a favorite movie. When I was trying to get her down for a nap I turned on the TV to see if there was a kids show that might convince her to sleep. I do this when she's on the verge of falling asleep and just doesn't seem to be getting over the edge. Sometimes it wakes her up and sometimes she passes out. Today there was nothing on! I finally saw that Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (the original) was on ABC Family. I put it on. Sadie laughed hysterically when the Oompa Loompas came on. She laughed herself to sleep! It's on and when we came downstairs from bath Daddy was watching it, so Sadie is now watching it again. I better peel her away so we can go to bed!

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Giant Excavator

Sadie loves tractors. She has sat on Grumpa's tractor twice, but really, the first time she saw the old red Yanmar puttering around the horse corral, it was love at first sight. However, Sadie's love of tractors isn't limited to Grumpa's tractor. It extends to tractor toys, to the tractors in books and to the tractors and heavy machinery that we drive by that are parked, or working, at the side of the freeway.

And that is why today was a very good day. We drove into Redding for the first time in over a week. Sadie was excited to be in the car (I think she can see better in the subaru because the car is up higher and the dashboard is narrower). She started giggling before we made it to our little town, and was pretty hysterical by the time we started to go past the major freeway reconstruction that's going on up on the summit. When we came to a stop for road work Nani gave Sadie the book that I had packed in her bag: and it was a tractor book.

That's when I found out that Sadie had a favorite tractor (it happens to be the tractor that I told her was my favorite). Nani explained that Sadie was repeatedly opening the book and pointing to a particular tractor called an excavator. But when Nani would say "excavator" Sadie would get upset and slam her little finger at the picture over and over again, like she does when we say "sun" when she points to the sun, when she wants us to say moon. I knew what the problem was as soon as Nani told me which tractor it was.

Sadie has two "truck" books by Roger Priddy. The "Giant Excavator" is in both of them. It's a hulking blue excavator that dwarfs the ones that we saw by the side of the freeway today. In one of the books it says "Giant Excavator" and in the other it only says "Excavator." When Nani started saying "Giant Excavator" Sadie stopped pointing over and over again and switched to closing the book and then reopening it to the page with the excavator and laughing and pointing again. It's amazing that it can be as hysterical the fiftieth time as it was the first.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Moon

Sadie is a little obsessed with the moon. She finds it in books. She constantly looks for it in the sky. And when we’re reading a book, if it’s daytime in the book, she gets upset if she points to the little circle in the sky and I say “sun.” She will keep pointing to it, over and over again, with a serious little frown on her face.

I explained it to her by saying that the sun is in the sky during the day and the moon is in the sky at night. Then we went outside yesterday and Sadie was shocked by what she saw. The sun was in the sky, but so was the moon. She pointed at it on her entire walk. Then today, when we went outside, she nearly fell over after every step, because her head was straight back and her little arm was flung up, pointing at the half moon. She now knows that it is out during the day… which means that Mommy was wrong when she said the sun is out during the day and the moon is out at night… completely justifying her insistent pointing when I label the little circle in the book the sun instead of the moon. Clearly it is the moon.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

What Did You Break, Sadie?!?!

Sadie and I were playing upstairs in the playroom at Nani and Grumpa's house when she started to flip through the pages of a board book that has poem prayers on the left hand side and puzzles on the right hand side. She's still much too little for the puzzles, so we've never taken them out of their spot in the book. I was sitting on the glider, knitting, when I noticed that Sadie was being particularly quiet. This is usually a sign that she is doing (or thinks that she is doing) something that she isn't supposed to do. I looked more closely to see what she could have possibly gotten into. She was sitting with her back to me, but I could see her reflection in the mirror on the closet doors. In her hand she had two puzzle pieces. The expression on her face was very serious. One puzzle piece was facing towards her, and the other was facing away and she was trying to force the pieces together. After watching her for a few seconds it was very clear what had happened. She seemed to think that she had "broken" the puzzle and she was trying to put it back together before I could see.

When I said her name she looked up with a huge smile (although I should note that she still kept her hands in front of her so that I couldn't see the puzzle piece). I tried to explain that it was a puzzle and then showed her how to put it back together so that it wouldn't look broken. She immediately lost interest (and worry) and was on to bigger and better things.

Funny Thing of The Day that Sadie Can Identify (by pointing): The Air Freshner Plug In in the bathroom. You say "where is the air freshner" and she can point to it.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Incredible Exhausted Stair Climbing Baby

Sadie took one nap today. It lasted for less than half an hour. I begged her to take a morning nap. I pleaded with her to take an afternoon nap. She giggled (with a hint of hysteria shaping the sound) and arched her back to get up. After a brief wrestling match I decided that we weren't getting any nearer to sleeping, and let her get up. She raced around the room, falling frequently, and bumping into things. When she's even the tiniest bit sleepy she losses the little coordination that she has and becomes a walking disaster.

Later in the day we walked over to see Nini and Gigi. Nani was already over at Nini's visiting. Sadie loves going next door to visit. Every time we go on a walk she spends every bit of energy trying to drag us over to their stairs, even when no one is home. Then she makes sure that we know on the way back that she absolutely did not want to leave. On our walk back home today she stopped Nani three times and tried to drag her back to Nini and Gigi's house!

She is also very interested in learning to climb stairs. She doesn't want to crawl up them. She insists on walking. And she doesn't want to take a step and bring her feet together. She wants to walk up stairs like a grown up, one foot on one step and then the next on the next step. It's funny to watch (and cling to her hand) because her legs aren't long enough to walk up the steps like that and after the first step she'll barely be able to reach the next on with her toe. Instead of bringing her feet together and taking a step, she pulls on my arms to balance and puts her weight on her toe while flinging her other foot at the next stair in a dramatic kick that barely makes it.

I am so glad we have sturdy gates on our stairs. She would just be scary on her own!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Mommy the Comedian

Sadie was just sitting on my lap nursing and she thought it was hilarious to stop nursing suddenly and shove her foot in her mouth. I would give her a look like she was being very silly and she would laugh hysterically. Then she put her foot close enough to my face that I pretended to put it in my mouth, but just when it got there I would blow on it and say "ewwww, baby foot, ewww!" This is apparently the funniest thing that she has ever seen or heard in her entire life and she laughed hysterically for about five minutes. It's so easy to make a thirteen month old think that you're the greatest comedian on Earth.

My Rant for the Year...

I have spent the last thirteen months of my daughter's life trying to get health insurance for my family. We lost our insurance four weeks after my daughter was born and paid out of pocket for her appointments and vaccines. It drained our savings pretty quickly.

I had heard wonderful things about California's Healthy Families Program. Our doctor accepted the insurance and said that the coverage was great. So we applied and waited... and waited... Months passed. Finally we got a letter that said that we didn't make enough money to qualify for Healthy Families. They were forwarding our application to Health and Human Services because we may qualify for Medi-Cal (one would hope that if we didn't make enough for one type we would qualify for the other... imagine hearing, you don't make enough for a type of public assistance... it defies logic!).

Thus we began to deal with the bureaucracy put in place by the great State of California to ensure the well being of its citizens. In September we received a giant packet of paperwork that needed to be returned immediately. I rushed to make copies of pay stubs and bank statements, loan statements and car bills. Our income had fallen from $26,000 a year to $12,000 a year. I was sure we would qualify. I returned the packet.


December came and we hadn't heard anything back from HHS. I went to the office to see what I could find out and was told to call my social worker. When I said we hadn't been told we had a social worker I was given a name and a number. I called and the phone rang through to voice mail. The message told me what information I should leave and then informed me not to call back. My case worker would respond in writing or over the phone.

A month passed with no call (we had now been waiting for five months). I went back to the office. I was told to call my social worker. I bit my tongue hard to keep from yelling (I was very frustrated and had no idea that the waiting was just beginning). I said I'd called a month earlier and that I hadn't heard anything. I was given a piece of paper to write a note on and handed it back, filled out, under the bullet proof glass. I now understood why it was there. This process could drive someone crazy.

Two weeks later a friend of my father who worked in the office of HHS told me to call to speak with her. I explained what had gone on and she was horrified. She told me that she would transfer me to the case worker and that I should say that if I didn't hear from her I would call back and ask to speak to her supervisor. I received a call an hour later from our apologetic case worker. She had been out of the office for a while and things had piled up. She was very sorry. She would send another packet with more paperwork for us to fill out.


I got the packet, with a list of included forms. They weren't all there. I filled out what I had and went down to the office. I showed the list and asked if I could get the forms or if I could speak to my Social Worker. I was told that she wasn't picking up her phone, and they didn't know which forms were on the paper I'd showed, so I could, you guessed it, leave her a note. At this point I nearly lost it. I refused to leave. My voice got louder. I was holding my eight month old daughter and had spent most of her life trying to get someone in this office to call me back. No one would call if I left. I was told to sit down. Amazingly, someone found the forms. I filled them out and turned them back in.

This spring our application was denied. We had $1000 too much in savings when we applied, but if we could prove that we had spent that much on medical bills we would qualify and our application would be reprocessed. I scrambled around the house. I easily found more then a thousand dollars in bills. I took them in to the HHS office. And waited.

The next letter that came claimed that I had never turned in my husband's pay stubs for the month of November. I had, but apparently they were no longer with our file. The letter said that if the office didn't receive copies of the stub by the next day, our application would be denied. I drove down to my parents storage locker and ripped apart our belongings until I found a box with last years pay stubs (when you live in a 10x15 ft cabin there's not a lot of room for storage). I found them and we took them to the office the next day. My husband said he would take them in because he was afraid I might snap if I went in.

This July, 11 months after our application arrived at HHS, we received a letter saying we had been denied. It explained again that we had too much in savings, but that if our savings had been drained by medical expenses, we could reapply.

I didn't take more copies of the bills in, because I didn't trust myself to explain that we had already given them over a thousand dollars in medical bills, without bursting into tears in the middle if the office.

Today my husband went into the office. He says he just acts like a big dumb guy and everyone is helpful (and a little flirty). They gave him papers to fill our and had him watch a movie about all the services they offer. Then they interviewed him and set up another interview for Wednesday morning. I need to fill out all the paperwork again and get together all the various statements to take in. It seems that things might finally be going somewhere.

Still, I'm afraid to get my hopes up... I have lost all faith in our state's health system. And I see no reason to believe the federal government would do any better...

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Upside to Crying in Public (sometimes)

There is a picture in the downstairs bathroom at Nani and Grumpa's house, of a bear standing on a waterfall with a fish jumping into it's open mouth. Every morning Nani and Sadie go into the bathroom and look at the picture and name everything in the bathroom. At some point, about a week ago, Sadie started opening her mouth when she looked at the picture. Then if you asked her, "Sadie, how does a bear eat a fish?" she would open her mouth wide and say "ahhhhh." She's been doing it for about a week now and thinks its hilarious.

Today at lunch, however, I may have abused the bear eating the fish trick. It's a tactic that I try not to use, but that I have noticed, over the course of the last few weeks, is incredibly effective at speeding things up when we're waiting for unreasonably long amounts of time.

The first time I noticed it was when we'd come back from the doctor's office and were picking Sadie's prescription up at the pharmacy in town. They said it would be twenty minutes, which was a long wait with a cranky, sick baby, but we walked around the store and managed to keep her calm. Almost an hour later I was feeling considerably less understanding. We had been standing by the pharmacy for another half an hour and no one seemed to know what had happened to the prescription (not a good sign considering my husband works at the store and knows all the people in the pharmacy). Still nothing seemed to be being done to find out what happened to Sadie's antibiotics. Then she started to scream. Paul gestured for me to go sit down with her in a quiet place over to the side, but I had noticed something. When she started to scream, the people in the pharmacy started asking where are prescription was... because they didn't want to listen to a screaming baby either. So I stayed planted and swayed her and told her it was okay, they would have the medicine soon. Minutes later we walked out with the antibiotic.

Today at lunch our waitress, who was not busy at all, had decided to completely ignore our table. No refills, despite the empty glasses on the edge of the table. She was sitting against the bar talking to a group of people and Paul had commented on how we wouldn't be going there again for a while because the service, overall, had been so bad (we had flipped a coin because I had said that it hadn't been a great experience the last several times we'd gone there, but I had lost, which was how we ended up there). Then I asked Sadie what a bear said when it ate a fish. I was just trying to distract her the first time I asked her, because things were going very slowly. She giggled and I asked her a second time. She said it a bit louder. Halfway through the third time I asked her (the "ahhhhh" was not louder then many of the adults talking) we got refills. And I hushed Sadie and asked her to use an indoor voice for the rest of the time we were there.

She really is pretty good when we're out in public, but every once in a while her little baby voice really can speed things up!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Keeping Up with Sadie

We are walking, walking, walking, everywhere. Sadie actually doesn't want to go indoors at all. She would rather cruise around the yard, falling frequently and laughing hysterically. We started out by trying to walk around the large dirt road loop that goes by our house. Instead Sadie headed over towards Nini and Gigi's house and then sat down and refused to go any further when we tried to get her to stand back up. She also loves the back lawn. When she figures out that we're trying to get her to come inside she has been known to make a break for it and try to get away.

We bought a pair of size seven sneakers yesterday and even though I knew that they would be too big, I decided to have her try them on this morning to see how big they were. They were already the perfect fit (and they don't look like they'll fit for much longer). Her feet are growing so quickly, just like the rest of her.

Today was Sadie's weekly trip to the library. We got there just as it started to pour and ran inside! Sadie picked out her five board books to read this week. Soon we'll have to start re-checking out books. So far Peekawho and Bean are her favorite library books.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A Dramatic Day

We caved in and picked out a new computer to replace my old, very slow, much loved, lap top today. It was not an easy shopping trip, however. Sadie refused to nap on the entire hour and a half trip to Redding and was in fine form by the time we arrived at Best Buy. She started out with a tired sort of cheerfulness and then innocently suggested that she be put down (she was in the cart) so that she could stretch her legs out a bit. A few seconds later she was racing up and down through the store, squealing with glee each time she would step on a part of the linoleum that was blue. Paul and I took turns trying to corral her energy and keep her from pulling things off the shelves, or otherwise destroying the store. And then Sadie's first all out hysterical tantrum began. Apparently Daddy had picked her up and she didn't want to be picked up. I tried to get her to laugh. More tears. I kissed her and talked to her and jiggled her up and down and even spun around a few times (which usually gets a giggle). Hysterical screaming. I put her down. She started to laugh.

It was the beginning of a series of tantrums that ended with the Best Buy guy commenting on how something so small could be so loud. I agreed that I am shocked by it on a daily basis.

Sadie must have been exhausted on the ride home, but she managed to keep her exhausted little eyes open for the first forty five minutes of the drive, which meant that she'd barely slept at all when we got home. Which is probably why the next story of the day was so dramatic.

Sadie walked up to a power outlet and started trying to play with it. It has a plastic cover over it, but I figured she still needs to learn that they are something that we don't touch, so I said no in a firm (but soft) voice when she started to play with it. She stopped and looked at me and then started to play again. I said no again. We went back and forth in this way, with her stopping when I would say no and then watching me for about ten seconds before trying again. After a few minutes of this I said, "no touch." Sadie put her hand down and stuck out her lip. It started to tremble. I stood up and rushed over to pick her up, but she was inconsolable by the time I made it across the room. Then she started to say "Dada" who she was pretty sure would overrule my decision about the outlet and let her play with it... I think she may be surprised. Poor little thing! She finally passed out and is sound asleep right now. It's almost my bedtime too!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Sadie the Stomper

Sadie is peering around the side of Grumpa's giant computer screen. My poor battered computers power cord finally snapped, leaving the apple temporarily useless, at least until we get a new power cord. Grumpa's computer must weigh five times more then my little Mac. She's had a long couple of days, after deciding that she doesn't think that she needs naps anymore. She resists her naps each day, and has recently made it until early afternoon before crashing.

She is now an expert walker. She hardly crawls these days at all, but instead stomps around in her tiny sneakers. Earlier this week when the Bishop said Mass at our Parish I took Sadie outside to wait until it was time to start, so that she could get all of her wiggles out. People were still arriving and I was watching Sadie very carefully on the lawn area, because it can get a little steep. When anyone arrived for Mass she would turn and run back onto the sidewalk, heading straight for them. She would stomp her little size six sneakers right up to them and then come to a stop. When they said hi to her she, without fail, turned on her little heel and stomped away. She was suddenly shy. At least until the next parishioner arrived.

She's also very interested in stairs. She refuses to crawl on them, because now that she has decided that she is a big girl, she wants to walk everywhere. Helping her go up them is not nearly as scary as watching her go down them (holding tighter to her hand the entire time). She takes shaky steps on the way up. She thinks it's fun to hop and have Mommy's hand keep her from falling on the way down. We don't have good judgement yet when it comes to these things.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Where's Your Diaper?!?!

Sadie surprised me today. She took a very short nap and woke up in a very cranky mood. She insisted on getting down on the ground and collapsing in a little heap. Finally she stretched out flat and acted like she was going to sleep. I had been typing something up with one hand while she'd been sleeping, so I hurried to finish up. After a few seconds I glanced at her. She was still laying in the same position. A few minutes later I glanced over again... and noticed something was different. She was still laying on the ground, but there was something next to her that hadn't been there before. A diaper. She was wearing a dress, so I couldn't tell at first that there was a half naked baby who had just removed her diaper, lying on the floor. A minute later I'd wrestled the naked baby back into the diaper, and I'm hoping that she forgets that she knows how to remove her diaper.

She is also having a problem with books that have pictures of the sun in them. She learned the word moon and looks up in the sky at the moon. Every time we see a picture of the moon she points them out. So imagine her surprise when we were looking at a book and she pointed to a picture of a bright ball in a blue sky and I said "sun." She pointed over and over again, waiting for me to correct the mistake and say moon. When I didn't she'd point more urgently. Finally I found a book with a white moon and we looked at the moon and said moon and the sun and said sun. I don't think she was satisfied with my response though.

Lastly we found out why she finds Will Ferrell so hilarious immediately after turning the TV off. After laughing hysterically every time Will Ferrell came onto the television screen she turned, looked at her dad and started to crack up. For the rest of the night every time she would look at Paul she would laugh hysterically. Apparently she thought she was watching Paul on TV in Bewitched.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Sadie Loves Will Ferrell

Sadie is sitting on my lap and the Nicole Kidman/Will Ferrell movie version of Bewitched is on TV. Sadie was sitting quietly on my lap until Will Ferrell came onto the screen. Then she started laughing hysterically. It doesn't matter what he's doing. At one point he was sitting at a table reading a script. Sadie broke out in side splitting, hysterical laughter. When he goes off the screen she goes silent. He comes back on and she loses it.

She's been in a hysterical mood all day long. She giggled through Gigi's birthday dinner and laughed through lunch earlier in the day at Burger King (which we now know has macaroni and cheese, making it Sadie's favorite restaurant in town). But apparently Will Ferrell is the funniest person she's ever seen.