Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Playing right now is my current favourite song:
This is actually by Jack Johnson off the Curious George soundtrack.
free music

A couple of new finds that I have to pick up soon are:

  • Yo-Yo Ma plays Ennio Morricone
  • "The Fountain" Motion Picture Soundtrack

  • I find that great new music is so hard to find. I find myself disappointed more and more lately. I work up a big hope that it's going to be my new favourite album, only to find myself bored after about 5 listens. I am the kind of person that runs an album into the ground. And so I guess that's a pretty hard test to pass: I'm always looking for that album that I can listen to endlessly without getting sick of. My favourite albums have 100+ plays in my iTunes.

    Some favourites are:

  • Peter Gabriel "UP" (Especially the live concert that Jeff "created")
  • Diana Krall, "When I Look Into Your Eyes" before Sofia totally killed it for me
  • Sarah McLachlan, "Fumbling Towards Ecstacy" and "Mirrorball"
  • Seu Jorge + Ana Carolina, "Ana & Jorge Ao Vivo"
  • Sting, "All This Time" and "Mercury Falling"
  • Sarah Harmer, "You Were Here"
  • K-Os, "Atlantis" - this was my workout album
  • Coldplay, "Parachutes"

  • The rest escape me right now.
    Anyhow, if you've got suggestions, make 'em.


    Tuesday, April 29, 2008

    For the benefit of Daine and Andy (Andy, are you a friend of Daine's?), here is the rest of the story to the loud thuds that we heard the other night:

    To explain, first, where we live, to those who don't know us for reals - we live on the 14th floor of an apartment building. There is only one floor above us, and my husband thought that the sounds were coming from the roof. The next day, my husband went to work, with only three hours of sleep accomplished, and came back home after a few hours 'cause he was so dizzy (he doesn't do well with little sleep). Before taking a LOOOOOONG nap, he went to see the superintendents and told them about the noises. They didn't have a clue, but guessed that perhaps one or some of the elevator shaft panels were loose and because it was so windy that night, it caused them to flap.

    Well, it didn't continue for the rest of the afternoon, and more importantly, it was quiet last night. However, now I'm scared about our elevators. Since we live on the 14th floor and have a baby, the stairs are not an option.

    Sorry the story isn't more exciting, but that wraps that one up.


    Monday, April 28, 2008

    Last night, Gonzo woke up and then I woke up to loud thuds happening in the middle of the night. Sounded like a huge object hitting concrete. Sometimes it would cause our walls to shake a little. This started at 2:45am, and continued on to the morning. My poor husband couldn't sleep. Being the curious guy that he is, he went up to check if the roof door was closed. Check. He came back and couldn't sit still - he went downstairs to see if the swing stages that were set up to do some repairs on the outside of our building were causing the noises. Nope. We went back to bed. I fell back asleep. He didn't.

    While I was asleep, I had a horrible nightmare. I dreamt that Gonzo, Sofia and I were at some kind of Plaza. Seemed like the Peanut Plaza, but they also had some kind of childcare available there. As we were shopping, I turned to Gonzo and noticed that Sofia wasn't with us. We had her sitting in a shopping cart, and we were no longer pushing it. It was one of those situations where I thought he was pushing it, and he thought I was pushing it. I ran to retrace our steps and I found our shopping cart, sans Sofia - only her chupete left where she was sitting. I ran through the plaza hysterical, calling her name. I ran down to the childcare and asked frantically if they had seen her. Negative. The only thing that kept running through my head is that I've lost her forever as my heart sank deeper than I could ever imagine.

    Then Gonzo woke me up looking for her chupete 'cause Sofia was sleeping in bed with us and started fussing. I have never been more happy to be woken up in the middle of the night.


    Tuesday, April 22, 2008

    132 / Monday, April 21
    Got nothing in particular to say aside from the fact that it's always nice to spend time at my in-laws house. We went there at around lunch time and just did nothing in particular all day. Watched Elizabeth going around and around playing her crazy imaginary games.

    Here's one that she always does every time:

    Every time we go to my in-laws' house and take Sofia out, it only takes a few minutes to have found that Elizabeth, my niece, has replaced Sofia's spot in the carseat with one of her dolls. This time it was extra hilarious because it was the tiniest doll I have ever seen, and it was being kept warm with the blanket Sofia arrived in. I looked and laughed so hard.

    Having a baby myself has really totally made me slow down and just be okay with doing nothing but watch the kids. My life used to be all about being highly productive that everything would end up being a project. Even "spending quality time" would end up being a project or a task that I would check off on my list of to-do's. People are not TASKS. I think that I really freaked Gonz out when we were first married. I would be stressed out from not knowing how to just stop, nevermind even just slowing down. He's definitely taught me a few things in that department.

    Pausing and reflecting is so crucial for me now because I really don't want to miss anything with Sofia, and any of the other children I may have in the future. This is what I am a bit hesitant about when I return to work. I realize that my life's pace is going to be picking up again when I do, and how am I going to balance this with my family life as a mother? I understand now that I am likely not going to be able to go back to work full-time but will have to trim back at least one day to do this. My family must be a priority or one day I will find myself with no relationship with my children and that is one road I will not put one step on.

    Margaret is in the Paper!

    Sunday, April 20, 2008

    Margaret appears in Toronto's Globe and Mail
    My sister, Margaret, appeared in the Globe and Mail yesterday. She will be participating in an arts and crafts show and sale, The M.A.D.E. Show (Modern Art Design Exhibit). This will be their third year featuring local artists. To promote it, the Globe and Mail wrote an article about the show and featured Margaret's piece, "Gwakong-Grandpa". The unfortunate thing is that they failed to credit her, or Christine who took the photo. Weird.

    Anyhow, the show details are:

    April 25 to 26
    Friday April 25th at 6pm 'til 11pm
    Saturday April 26th at noon 'til 10pm
    Sunday April 27th at noon 'til 7pm
    At the Gladstone Hotel
    214 Queen Street West Toronto. Admission is free.

    Hope you can make it. As usual, Margaret is working her butt off, so go out and support her!

    Growing up!

    Daddy and Sofia
    This month is going to be a fun month.
    Sofia is four months old. We just had our check up with Dr. Chin, and she is now 16 pounds and 3 ounces. Last month she was 14 pounds and 9 ounces. She has pretty much gained 2 pounds since her last appointment. I think she grew 7 centimetres too. Remember the pinched nerve in my neck? Quelle suprise! Dr. Chin said she had a big month.

    The awesome thing about this month, though, is that she has started to do some new things:

  • Giggle! You have to catch her in the right mood right now, but when she gets going, the giggles keep coming and I think that there is hardly a better sound than a baby's laugh. When she did it the first time, I nearly cried.

  • Tummytime! The first step to crawling. She is now staying on her tummy without complaint most of the time, and is holding her head up steady. She is kicking her legs, but doesn't know how to shift her weight back on to them yet.

  • Rolling over! She is almost there... she keeps twisting her body when she is on her back to roll onto her front. Several times she has already rolled from her front to her back.

  • Talking! It is becoming way more frequent now. She is becoming a lot more responsive where when you speak to her and ask her a question, she will coo a sound back.

    She still continues to love Diana Krall. Last night wasn't a good night (she missed having a good nap in the afternoon) and was on the freak out! Christine suggested putting Diana Krall on ('cause I forgot about that), and she stopped crying altogether. Instead, she looks straight into my eyes and smiles behind the pacifier in her mouth. And then, she has the nerve to muster a giggle! She's friggin' torturing me with the ear piercing screams and trying to wrestle herself out of my arms (she's getting really strong), and all I have to do is put Diana Krall on? I'm telling you - I am so sick of that album ("When I Look Into Your Eyes").

    So, I am anticipating a wonderful month. The more she giggles, the happier I am! And getting more mobile does come with its problems, but now she is going to be less like a babylump. Oh, did I mention on this blog that I have actually figured out why I was having so much trouble feeding her? Well, it was because she wasn't hungry. She used to eat around every 2.5 to 3 hours. When she would start fussing around that time, I assumed it was because she was hungry. Nope. About a week ago I quit trying to force her to eat. I started just waiting it out. Voila! She finishes the bottle almost problem-free now, every time. This definitely takes the stress out. Over a full month of panic every feeding time is now finally over.

  • Wii

    Wednesday, April 16, 2008

    127 / Wednesday, April 16

    Today, we bought Sofia a Wii. Until she can hold a controller, her parents will enjoy it on her behalf. (Especially when she is sleeping.)

    We all feel the same, girl.

    Tuesday, April 15, 2008

    After a great meal, that's all I want to do too.

    Sofia, after a meal from Kathy Jimenez on Vimeo.

    A Pinch is a Pain

    Monday, April 14, 2008

    On Friday, I woke up and I had a pain in my neck. I thought nothing of it, and rolled back over in bed to sleep. Margaret called around 8am, and I jumped out of bed to answer it (Gonz was already at work) - we had plans that day to work on a whole bunch of stuff for her show. A few minutes later, I would figure out I wasn't going to be in any shape to help her. Not Friday, or even a couple of days after.

    After I hung up the phone, I rubbed my neck a little, surprised to find that the pain still hadn't gone away. I decided I'd get ready for the day while Sofia was still sleeping. I went to take a shower and as I was trying to lift my shirt over my head, I felt a huge stabbing pain in my neck causing me to not really be able to lift my arm at all. I tried to brush my teeth, but even that small motion caused a ton of pain too! I started to freak out - how am I supposed to care for Sofia?! Later, when I tried to lift her, I nearly dropped her. This is how bad it was.

    I called Margaret back and she was like, "Wow... are you okay?" I don't think so. Margaret rushed over and helped me get Sofia ready and then we were going to go over to her/my parents' home for the day. Good thing, that day, my mother also happened to be home. The pain got worse and worse and I had to leave my mother to care for Sofia. I could only be off my back for a few minutes at a time before I had to lie back down because my muscles were seizing.

    Apparently, all the women in my family have had this before. Christine used to get it all the time because of dancing. I remember Margaret getting it when we were still children. She woke up one morning not being able to lift her head off her shoulder. That sure made an impression on me. This was the first time I'd ever had it. Christine told me it was a pinched nerve. That would make sense of why I couldn't locate the pain. It felt like it was running all over my neck and my shoulders - and when the pain was at its height, I climbed up to my cheek, ear and even eyeball.

    So, back to helping Margaret out for the day: it was very limited. I could hear the sound of disappointment behind her trying to be understanding. She had a long and large to-do list for us to accomplish that day. Well... I asked her to give me all the tasks that I could do while lying down. I helped her trim off the corners of leather pieces for her cuffs. I had little pieces of leather littered all over my face and hair. When I was better a little later, I helped her design her signage and branding for her packaging. At the end of it all, she still felt that we accomplished a lot although not exactly as expected. Phew!

    The pain continued, however, into the evening. It was so painful at dinner that I could only take a few bites until I had to lie back down to release the tension in my neck. At one point, I surprised my family by being in tears. I guess I was also just really frustrated. Oh, did I mention that being stressed and frustrated also made the pain worse? It was just escalating.

    I had to cancel everything I was going to do on Saturday. I was going to have a bunch of girls over for a brunch. Cancelled. I was going to go to Saturday Night Gathering to play and sing - which I hadn't done in a long, long time. Cancelled.

    Saturday was bad too. But fortunately, I had all of my family available. Christine became the supply mom the whole weekend. This is the first time I have heard her say, "Sofia, you are impossible! I can't do this all day!" and she really looooooooves to dote on Sofia. Not this weekend... where all the cranky parts were hers to take care of too. My father and Margaret brought lunch over and because Samantha didn't get the message about girls' cancelled get-together, she hung out for a while. :-)

    Sunday, it was getting better. Gonz, Christine, Sofia and I went out to Oshawa and make our weekly visit to my in-laws. Crazy thing is that all the women of that family are all familiar with pinched nerves also so they knew what to do. Mi nuestra kept feeding me Advil, and Ana kept warming up the bean bag to put on my neck. Maria Paz once got a pinched nerve in her neck by trying to hold in a sneeze in the middle of the night to not wake her baby. Tough call.

    Anyhow, by the end of the day, I was a whole ton better.

    So... all of that to write, how awesome is it that I have my whole family around me and they are ready to help at a drop of a hat? It just keeps making me think, how in the world did my mother, and all immigrant mothers do it? They're millions of miles away from their families - where even a phone call to get some motherly advice would be too much for them to afford. And how awesome was it that God provided that day off for my mother to be home on the Friday so that I wouldn't have to worry about caring for Sofia as I got better?

    Today is Monday, and I am out on the other side now. I have a little bit of soreness in my neck still, but I think it's from over-massaging it, but I have a heart full of gratitude.

    Just as I imagined

    Tuesday, April 08, 2008

    121 /  Tuesday, April 8

    Yup. The warm weather feels just as I had expected.

    Mi Suegra

    Monday, April 07, 2008

    I have a fabulous mother-in-law. Whenever people or television shows make in-law jokes, I can't relate.
    This fall, I will have known her for 10 years. Only a couple of months shorter than I have known my husband. Over the years, we have had our misunderstandings - not necessarily out in the open. But I think that each on our part have worked on our relationship and I really feel that at this point, we're reaping a very sweet friendship indeed.

    On Saturday, we had ourselves a great cry-chat and she told me events that she appreciated about me (i.e., like yelling at her one time) that meant a lot to her.

    You know how sometimes a story, or a moment, or a feeling can stay with you for a little while. Well, today is Monday and my Saturday's step closer to my mother-in-law hasn't faded. Every time it returns to my mind, I can smile and say I am so grateful for fabulous in-laws.

    oh margaret...

    Saturday, April 05, 2008

    Margaret wrote on her website, regarding how overwhelmed she is feeling:

    "I honestly don't quite know where March went. And why do I feel as if April is going to spiral out of control and leave me dead in May?
    Oh well."


    Problem Solved

    Friday, April 04, 2008

    breakfast routine
    Okay, believe it or not, Sofia DOES NOT have thrush. Back and forth, I'm trying to figure out why Sofia is having so much trouble at feeding times and it was really driving me to my wits' end. I started to really lose my temper. Thinking back, it's just ridiculous. She's not even four months yet and I can get angry at her? She's really pulling the worst out of me sometimes. It's amazing how frustrating it can be to not know how to help someone who can't communicate with you.

    So, yesterday (Thursday), at 8am, a phone call wakes me out of my sleep. It's my doctor, Dr. Chin. He noticed that I had made an appointment for Sofia on Monday to follow up on her thrush and was wondering why I was waiting until Monday to have him see her. I explained 'cause I looked in her mouth and it's all still there and just wanted to continue to give her the medicine until there were no more days left (7 to 10 days were the instructions). He asked if I could come with Sofia to see him today, he'd stay after hours to see her. I said I couldn't get there 'cause Gonz would have an appointment in the evening. Tomorrow morning, then. I said ok.

    Dr. Chin looks in her mouth and says, "Nope, it's not thrush." Ugh. I'm relieved and pissed all at the same time. Apparently, she's got cysts on the roof of her mouth. They're harmless - they may go away by themselves, or they may just stay there and become "part of their anatomy" he says. Now (you're gonna think I'm totally nuts), I'm just sure that she's teething. He said that the white bump on her gum still may be a tooth. Today, she was the fussiest I have ever seen her. She was just crying and crying, and when that happens, I give her this dose of Camilia in a little plastic case. Within five minutes she's calmed down and has no problem with eating. I'm unsure if she'll go back to the breast willingly, but she really has no problem with the bottle at all.

    I am in dreamland again.

    All the worries and confusion and anxiety about how Sofia was doing was really getting me into a knot. I started losing perspective, and really starting to be at a loss of what to do. Every time she'd really cry, I would look at Gonzo with tears in my eyes and just tell him I can't go through this anymore. It's really hard to see your baby cry so hard, that she's red-faced, gasping for air and you don't know how to comfort her at all.

    During all of this time, I let my quiet time slide. I think I didn't just take time out to reflect and look to God to lead me for a whole week. I got distracted by Sofia's troubles and in turn they became much more overwhelming to me than necessary. I couldn't see that my baby is happy and healthy, despite the trouble I have feeding her. But if I had taken the time to seek God and ask for His strength, it would have still been hard, but my brain wouldn't have been in a never-ending loop of let's-diagnose-the-baby-myself!

    I'm also super-grateful for the awesome doctor I've got. I told my in-laws and they just couldn't believe that my doctor would even take the time to call me. My in-laws spend most of their time in the waiting rooms of walk-in clinics 'cause they just don't have the relationship with their doctor and can hardly get in to see her anyway.

    I'm in a good spot again. What a relief. I hope I have sometime to just ride this one out until the next mystery hits. :-)

    Got outside!

    Thursday, April 03, 2008

    116 / Thursday, April 3
    The day finally came that I have been waiting for! The day that it was warm enough to get outside with Sofia. A reported 8 degrees celsius outside and you should have seen how fast I got Sofia ready after I had my lunch. Poor thing was falling asleep so I kept calling her name to stay awake until I got her in her snowsuit (because if I waited until after she fell asleep she'd scream BLOODY MURDER!)

    I walked to Fairview Mall (20 minutes), walked around IN Fairview Mall (20 minutes) and then walked back home (20 minutes). My back, my abs, my legs, and my feet felt gloriously sore.

    How can I argue with that?

    Wednesday, April 02, 2008

    So, last night Gonzo has a stomach ache from eating too many almonds.

    [Kathy] Honey, why did you eat so many almonds? You know they don't make you feel good.
    [Gonzalo] Sorry... You were sleeping and I was hungry. No matter where I hid the almonds I always found them.