Friday, October 19, 2007

The Great Wanderer

The Boy and I travelled over much of north and central New Jersey today. I suppose this is truly getting in touch with his Jewish roots and preparing for the wanderings that happened, for forty years, post-Exodus; this would help explain why he got through the day with flying colors instead of a potential nightmare.

So, we left the house at 8AM and headed north. We had some sitting-in-traffic issues, which caused him to be more than a little grumpy - he likes being in the car, when it's travelling. When it's stationary, not so much. I played the new children's songs CD for him, which I think he liked. He's been noticing music more and more these days. Molly and I sing to him every day, and he's sat in on lots of marching band rehearsals and saxophone / bass lessons and quartet singing rehearsals. He's not entertained by listening to music on the stereo, yet, but I think he's starting to notice that it's there. He fell asleep about ten minutes into the 65-minute ride.

Anyway. 9AM asthma doctor appointment, for which I arrived at 9:07. No problems, as anticipated; the breathing's been under control recently. Joined Grandpa at 10 o'clock at the Dunkin Donuts on the north side of town; they were sweeping up, and he hates the dust brought up by a broom, so we went to the other dunkin donuts. No luck - just started sweeping. The bagel shop around the corner didn't have chairs - just stools up to a bar. That's not okay, because - at this point it's 10:30, and The Boy hadn't eaten since 6AM - The Boy needed his brunch, also. Walked across the street to Manhattan Bagel, fed The Boy, fed The Daddy, bs'ed with Grandpa. Left at 11:00-ish.

Went to Border's by the mall... I'm getting involved with this "Gapbuster" group, which is a Mystery Shopper thing. I'm supposedly going to get paid about $10 to go into stores, ask for help with specific tasks, and spend about $2 on stuff. I've done a handful of jobs for them this month - if it actually works, then I stand to have about $120 deposited into my bank account on November 15. With luck, that can be a nice "fun money" source for a few months - make enough to buy The Boy a toy, buy Mommy dinner, or buy Daddy a new videogame. Considering that each "thing," including paperwork, takes about an hour, it's a worthwhile investment. I took The Boy around in the chest carrier instead of his car seat, and he appreciated it.

Anyway, that took about twenty minutes to wander around the store and check things out, I bought myself some candy (Lindor's Truffles, the white chocolate ones), let some old ladies coo over my baby, then got back into the car. I drove down 287 (something I try to avoid doing) to Green Brook, and chatted with a lady who owns a new, little music store above a Dunkin Donuts in a strip mall. She's looking for someone to teach or four hours of week every week. I had my first experience changing a diaper in the car as I waited for the appointment to start - not too bad, even if The Boy's head hung over the edge of the seat a bit. My car didn't smell as much like baby poop as I expected, and nothing got on the leather thanks to the changing pad. The diaper rash was almost gone, also, which is good news.

Fed The Boy in the car for a bit, then finished the feeding while I interviewed with the lady. The Boy didn't seem to mind a bit and enjoyed the new surroundings, including the chirping birds in a corner cage. (I don't think he could see the birds, but, still.) We then got into the car and went to an orthopedist's appointment for me. Upon picking him up out of his chair to carry him in, I noticed poopies on the back of his trousers - it turned out that he had gone in his diaper, then the jouncing of the car convinced the stuff to spread up his back. Sigh.

Changed the boy again (this is, like, an hour after the last changing) and put him into a new outfit. To show how much he grew - this outfit was the one he wore home from the hospital, and - at the time and since - has been HUGE on him. It's too small; it doesn't let him stretch out. It was fine for the time being, mostly because, at the time, I just didn't think to check out the other outfit in the diaper bag. Took him inside the doctor's office. He got fussy-fussy as we waited, and I picked him up and helped him get rid of a gas bubble in his belly. He still fussed as I was being examined by the doctor, despite "normal" methods - standing him straight, sitting him up, giving him a pacifier, rubbing his back, thumping his back, etc. Once the doctor left, I put him back in his child seat and swung him, pendulum-like, back & forth for a while. He fell asleep quickly, slept through my x-ray and subsequent cortisone shot, and slept all the way home. He woke up a little bit before Molly got home and took him from me.

So, all told - 105 miles on the car today, total travel time of 2 hours, fifty minutes. That's pretty darn hard for a little guy like that, considering that we didn't have a lot of time to spend snuggling like we usually do. Later in the night, he napped for an hour on my wife, then an hour on me. Nothing's better than the baby sprawled out, hugging my chest (as much as he can reach) while he sleeps.

Later at night, when Mommy finally changed him into pajamas, he spent "Naked Time" with me down stairs. We read zombie comics, then came upstairs and played Playstation 3 - a good shoot-em-up. He fell asleep in the later and is sleeping in his crib right now. Today, I think, was a good day.

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