Sunday, June 29, 2008

Today, when I stepped in the shower, I smelled something I hadn't smelled in a long time.

The scent of chlorine.

Although I am the fire sign of Sagittarius, I was truly born a Water Baby. My first foray into a pool occurred sometime around my sixth month birthday and I've never stopped.

I grew up in a pool. I started swimming competitively around the time I could read chapter books on my own. Early morning practices, biking a few blocks to jump in a cold pool, warming after a few laps back and forth. The snap of the rubber cap against my skull, the depression around my eyes that goggles would leave for hours after practice.

But mostly, what I remember is the scent of chlorine that never seemed to leave my body. Even though swimming indoors was rare (meaning, all of my pool activities happened in the summer), I smelled like chlorine year-round. When I jumped out of the shower, the smell of the pool hung in the air for hours afterwards. Sometimes, in December, I could scratch my arm and smell the pool lingering fresh on my skin.

Eventually, I stopped swimming so much. Early morning practices and hot Saturday meets ended with high school. Lifeguarding ended with college. Summers in Arizona were so hot, the pool felt like bath water and did not feel refreshing enough to make it worthwhile.

I am determined to make The Bean a Water Baby. I want her to love the ocean and the pool as I do, to count down days to summer not to be out of school, but to be in a pool. Last weekend, we took her to her first pool. She seemed a bit hesitant at first, making her serious baby faces. But she warmed up after a bit and by the end, splashed and kicked with gusto. I swam a few laps myself, ecstatic at the silvery feel of the water.

The monsoons have come early this year, and with it, bringing the summer molds which make my allergies go haywire for a few weeks before the rain leaves us for dust for another year. I haven't been smelling much. But today, when I stepped into the shower, I smelled the scent of the pool.

Summer is here.

Monday, June 23, 2008

A Worthy Goal

There is a shop in ABQ that sells only cupcakes. It is called Cake Fetish (yes, google it). Cupcakes of a variety of flavors and tastes, styles and deliciousness. Here's a random sampling of flavors:
Half-Baked – Chocolate Chip Vanilla Cake, Vanilla Buttercream and a Cookie Dough Center
“Hot” Chocolate - Chocolate Cake dipped in Chocolate with Chocolate Red Chile Buttercream
Razzmanian Devil - Chocolate Cake, Chocolate Buttercream, Raspberry filling and Chocolate Ganache

They have some flavors that are available every day and some that are available only certain days of the week.

One great thing about breastfeeding exclusively is that I can eat pretty much anything I want and not gain weight. I may not lose weight, but I'm able to maintain my current weight even while eating chocolate chip cookie dough for breakfast four days in a row. God bless the milkies.

Keeping this in mind, my mom-friend Claudia and I have agreed upon a worthy goal to complete by the end of the summer. We shall sample every flavor of cupcake before Labor Day.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Kung-Fu Cats

Naturally, now that we have a baby in the house, we have lots of baby items in the house. Paraphernalia that I was previously unaware of, stimulating the baby in ways I did not realize babies needed stimulating (I hate the term "tummy time." Barf). Swing, bouncer, Bumbo, carseat, Pack'n'Play, crib, dresser, changing table...the list goes on. (And now that I really take a look, I feel like this very small person---not even 14 pounds yet---is really taking up a lot of space.)

Lots of people ask how the animals are dealing with the transition. Since we own a menagerie of obnoxious animals, I can see the concern. The dog has adjusted well--she only gets a bit upset when the baby cries (but let's face it, who doesn't?).

The cats are a different story.

The cats, all three of them, are in love with the baby...or not so much the baby herself, but rather the previously listed things that come with the baby. They have taken up permanent residence on the baby's furniture. Every day, I find myself evicting cats from the bouncer, the crib, the changing table, the dresser...the list goes on.

It's really rather infuriating, getting their cat furs on everything.

I love them dearly, but I wish they were a bit less interested.