Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I retract my last entry. Today I questioned them about the Cheez-Its, and they said no, he had not eaten them. He had pretzels instead. It was a mistake that they had written Cheez-Its in his daily information sheet (I hadn't noticed that it said Cheez-Its until I was on my way home); the other children were having Cheez-Its, but William was having pretzels.

They did call me this afternoon, kind of nervous and apologetic sounding, to tell me that he had accidentally gotten ahold of some Nilla Wafers at snack time. (Nilla Wafers contain milk protein). I told them thanks for letting me know.

It's a good day care, really. It is the best we could ever hope for. Well, it ought to be. It costs an arm and a leg and at least one kidney to send him there. It is the kind of place where parents send their kids so that they can build up a "portfolio" and get into a private school and then go on to an ivy league college, where they will graduate and get some high-paying crappy job in order to pay off their student loans. I feel way out of my element. But the staff is so nice, super nice. I really like them. And there are a lot of perks. They're very flexible and understanding about dietary issues (despite my complaint yesterday); they even do cloth diapers. They call me over every little thing (in fact, I can generally expect at least one call every day, just to update me on something). And they send almost daily emails with photos of what Will is doing. It's really nice. If I have to send my kid somewhere, I'm glad it's there.

story time.jpg

Today, Will seemed to enjoy "story time," after going for a buggy ride. When I arrived to pick him up, they were listening to the Beatles, which is his favorite group.

I want him to stay pure and healthy and vegan, but also, it breaks my heart if he wants a Nilla Wafer but can't have it because it has milk protein in it.

Evaluating my priorities. Deciding which battles to fight.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What's a vegan mother to do

They gave him cheez-its at daycare today.


Saturday, September 18, 2010


You may have noticed, I do not have much time to blog lately.

I really like my new job, I just wish that I had about 6 more hours every day. I keep thinking that things will settle down once we get our boxes unpacked and find homes in our new house for all our things. I fear that the unpacking may never happen though, because every day it's all I can do to come home and cook dinner, take care of the baby, do laundry, clean up the kitchen, pack lunches, and get my sh*t together for the next day. Oh, and also I am training for my 10th marathon (which may end up being a casualty of this war). I apologize to everybody to whom I owe emails or phone calls.

I realized the other day though, that I suddenly view the passage of time differently for the first time, at least, since I started grad school. You know, I'm not stressed out by it. In grad school, the clock was always ticking. Writing grants, doing pilot studies and field research, analyzing data and writing your dissertation. All while having to do some other work on the side, like teaching or undergraduate advising. And you only have so much time to do it (not enough time in fact) before they pull your funding and you need to apply for jobs that will have something like 200 applicants a piece and that will require you to work some 60-70 hours a week for a chance at getting tenure instead of getting fired. The whole thing was kind of depressing.

After I somehow managed to finish my dissertation (while also being a full time mother to The Baby Who Cries More Than Any Other Baby In The History Of The World), I could feel the clock ticking even more. If I didn't manage to get some kind of job soon, I was so afraid that I never would. Who would hire somebody who'd been a stay at home mom for like 5 years, when there would always be an overabundance of fresh PhD's out there? No one, that's who.

So I found this job. It's a jobby job. Not tenure track. I get to do anthropology from 9-5 and then come home and do whatever I want (which, I guess, is cooking, laundry, cleaning, and taking care of the baby). And for the first time in my memory, there is no clock ticking. I'm here. I don't have to worry about getting through grad school so I can get a job so that I can get tenure, so that I can become The Next Big Name in Primatology. I was never going to be the Next Big Name anyway. I don't have to worry about publications or grants, or figuring out how to get permits to do research in some far away country. I've got my jobby job and my boys, and despite all the chaos of our unpacked boxes, I am happier than I have been in a long time.

Thanks for reading.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Dear William (13 months)

Dear William,

Today you are 13 months old! Lucky 13!

Your whole life changed in just about every possible way this past month. It has been rough on us all, but for the most part you are taking it in stride. Well, almost in stride. You are standing up now, but not quite walking. You do love standing though. When you wake up in the mornings, first thing you do is stand up in your crib and holler for me. You smile when I come into the room.


William, we moved to Missouri this month. That is a brand new state for you. The whole thing was a bit stressful. We lived in an extended stay hotel for 2 weeks before we could get into our new place. (The extended stay hotel was where you first started standing).

I started a new job this month. For the first 2 weeks, your dad took care of you. Then your new daycare opened and you started going there. So far you like it I guess. I had been worried about how you would ever take a nap there (for me you only nap if you are nursing or if we go for a walk in the stroller), but your "teachers" somehow got you to sleep on a cot. They even took a picture to prove it.


You got sent home from daycare on your second day. They said you were acting fussy (you, fussy? Imagine that!) and they took your temperature and it was 99.5 (which is nothing, but they had to send you home). I don't know why you had a fever. You have never before in your entire life had a fever. I think maybe you were stressed from all the major upheavals in your life during this past month, or maybe you were teething. At any rate, you seemed to feel better the next day.

Speaking of teething though, you've gotten another tooth. You're up to 8 teeth now. It's your bottom lateral incisor. It wouldn't surprise me if you're also working on some molars too. Just please, no more fevers or any other type of illness. Not only does it scare the liver out of me if you are ever sick, but also, I cannot technically take time off work to take care of you for the first 6 months of my employment :(

You're nursing less than ever. Usually just twice a day (well, except for today, when I think you've nursed 5 times so far, but it's a weekend and your 13th month birthday besides). You are eating better, at least some of the time. You eat rice and beans sometimes. And sliced grapes. And plenty of sunflower butter and wheat bread.

You love playing with your Fridge Farm, and you've had a renewed interest in Blue Seahorse (see above picture of you napping in your cot). Other favorite activities of yours include crawling over to me, pulling up on my legs, and biting my knees.

You still cry a lot. In fact, you are crying now, maybe because you want me to stop typing and hold you. Guess I'd better go.

Love you,


Lucky red hat