Thursday, April 26, 2012

Sucks To Be Sick

How can you tell if I'm really sick? Well, chances are, if I willingly let MIL cook for me, I am rather ill. And that's just what happened this week. I had to go home sick on Wednesday. My throat was burning and I had THE worst headache ever. If you're a teacher (especially to small children), you KNOW that you've got to go home and rest.

Jeremy was home between some meetings and had already told his parents I was on my way home. His father had run to the pharmacy to get me some medicine for my throat. When my husband learned of my piercing headache, he ran out to get medicine for that. MIL was actually not so bad, I must admit. I fed Raelynn and then she took over, keeping Raelynn busy with play and giving her naps so I could sleep.

When I awoke, MIL asked me if I'd like for her to cook dinner. At first, I said no. But I still felt like total ass and the thought of standing over the stove trying to cook dinner for my husband and me further exhausted me. I also had visions of Jeremy being unhappy cooking dinner after a long day of work so I changed my mind and told her in Chinese to go ahead and cook. It wasn't a culinary masterpiece of course, but I wasn't up for eating much anyway. I picked the potatoes out of the dish and ate them with my rice. Before she left, she even cleaned up after herself. Nice job, MIL!

This morning I woke up and still felt sick. I reluctantly called in. I couldn't see myself standing there, repeating the same things over and over with my throat hurting as it did. I knew I needed to rest up and kick this horrible illness out of me. But the thought of being trapped in my house with my in-laws made me want to jump out the window. Both MIL and FIL showed up to take care of me. I wanted to cry. It's not that I don't appreciate the help. I do. Even if it comes in the form of two slow-witted people who leave half-eaten cucumbers sitting about (no fucking joke). But to be sick in bed in our small house with both of them lumbering about just sucks.

I have to say though that they left me alone fairly well. I was given my daughter to feed her breastmilk. They were quiet while I rested. And MIL actually made a lunch that tasted more than good. It was great! It was just like wonton soup we'd be served in the states, only BETTER. I briefly questioned whether or not I was dreaming as you no doubt remember some of the things she's cooked, right? Scroll to the bottom of that post for the photos. Just looking back at that gives me nightmares! Blech!

She also made some herbal remedy for my throat that was horrible but actually worked. I took a nap soon after and slept deeply. I feel loads better! And now that I'm awake, she's in there cooking dinner that, dare I say, actually smells rather tasty? That's it. Perhaps the fever went to my head. Though hopefully, perhaps she has just gotten better at cooking and perhaps I have finally learned how to be kind to my in-laws. Don't worry...they'll still do plenty for me to make fun of. Of that I am sure!!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Dim Bulb Makes A Sharp Point

This evening, I began to make dinner. Which is nothing unusual. But something in my kitchen sure was. Thankfully, there were no unrefrigerated food items laying about. However, there was a danger lurking on the countertops. Fortunately for me, I spotted it before it could do me harm. What was it? Check this out...

Something isn't quite right in this picture. Do you see it? I zoomed a little more on the next picture...

Yes. That's right. A knife WITH THE POINTY END UP! Who the fuck does that, you might ask. Why my moron of a MIL of course! This is not the first time she has done this. I've said it before and by golly, I will say it again: this woman has absolutely no fucking common sense whatsoever and it truly frightens me more than anything. HOW can you put a knife back like this and think it is okay?  Jeremy spoke to her about it the last time she'd done this. It's annoying that he'll have to do so again. But really, more scary than annoying. How can she forget to put it back the right way? Honestly, I am so sick of my husband making excuses for her negligence and lack of sense. He writes it off with "but she's old." So? My parents (no offense you guys) are older than his parents and they don't do shit like this. They are, bless their hearts, crazy in their own ways but I can guaranfuckingtee you that my parents wouldn't suddenly forget to put a knife away with the blade down. If they did, I'd be sending them to the doctor for an evaluation. Maybe Jeremy doesn't want to face facts. Or maybe he already has endured a lifetime of her stupidity and this is just normal for her. Personally, I think she's getting worse. I do feel sorry for her and I will continue to, until she causes me to cut myself or injures my baby. Then it's off to that glue factory for her.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Happy 1st Birthday Raelynn!!!!

This post is for my precious big little girl on her special day. Happy 1st Birthday Raelynn! I can't even believe how quickly this year flew by. One year ago at this time, I'd just gone into labor. A labor I would endure for nearly an entire 24 hours. Remember that? Oh but it was worth it. Nothing has given me more joy in this world than to be Raelynn's mom. So for her special day, here are some of my favorite photos of Raelynn being Raelynn.

This is the first photo ever taken of Raelynn, shortly after she was born on April 16, 2011 at 11:28am. 

 Here we have Raelynn at about 5 days old, once we'd gone home from the hospital.

 Just look at how tiny she is! Babies are just so amazing.

Two weeks old, chomping on her Uncle Phillip's finger.

Almost one full month old here. This is one of my absolute favorite photos ever. She's displaying what we'd called "Problem Face" and she's wearing that adorable hat Aunt Kimmy gave her, which at the time was too large. Now that hat doesn't fit. Incredible!

One month old, sound asleep. I used to love putting her in that onesie with the monkeys. It hasn't fit in a looooooooooong time.

One month old, snuggling with her daddy.

 Almost 2 months old and on her first flight. This was when we went to Shanghai for her US passport.

 Our little family at the Shanghai Zoo.

 Sound asleep at the Shanghai Zoo.

Look at her tiny little legs! A very hot day in early June 2011, in front of the Shanghai skyline.

 Swimming for her 2-month birthday. Awww!

Drying off after her swim. She is SO cute when she's angry!

Swimming again for her 3-month birthday. Her face got chunkier!

 Rolled over and ready for her 100 Day Celebration!

100 Day Celebration. And to think I thought she was big then! Wow!

At 4 months old, Raelynn meets my parents (Papa and Hey-You) when they came to visit us.

She absolutely adored them!

5 months old! This was right before she was crawling. And she still loves that dinosaur!

 6 months old and looking even more like a doll than ever.

And at 6 months old, she got her first taste of solid food: pureed potatoes!

 7 months old with Mommy!

Daddy's girl at 7 months!

8 months old. Go Bulls!

9 months old and wondering if she can successfully jack my beer. 

9 1/2 months, crying because she doesn't remember Uncle Phillip.

But don't worry. They got along just fine soon after that. Maybe because he let her play with the remote control in his hotel room! Haha!

10 months old and loving her bath time with her rubber duckies! I remember when she HATED bath time. Like in this photo:
What a difference!

Our happy 10-month old!

11 months old!

And finally, our incredible 1-year-old girl. I never realized how special all birthdays really are until now. The gift of life is an amazing one that we should treasure. Raelynn Sharon Qu, Daddy and I love you more than life itself. Every day, you make us grateful to be alive. We are the luckiest people in the whole world to be your parents. We fall deeper and deeper in love with you with every second that goes by. Your smile and laughter brighten our days. You are the best blessing of all!

Now THIS is love. =)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Princess Raelynn's New Carriage

A little over a year ago, when Raelynn was about 2 weeks old, my in-laws decided to buy us a stroller for her. Which was very kind indeed. Only they didn't consult us about this stroller or consider our needs with it. No, no, no. That would have been the sensible and logical thing to do. Instead, they bought what they thought would be seen by everyone, imagining that as we would push Raelynn down the street in it, people would stop us to ask us about our massive carriage and then my husband would brag about how his parents spent a fortune on it for us. Or more likely, MIL imagined HERSELF getting the opportunity to push Raelynn around and brag about the baby AND the stroller.

Unfortunately for us (and them), since they didn't think about anything except overpaying for something unnecessary, we wound up with a stroller that was insanely heavy, extremely difficult to open and close, and ugly on top of it all. The ugly bit I could deal with, but the fact that I couldn't possibly lug that thing up and down the 6 flights of stairs in our building (remember, no elevator in this stupid place) AND carry the baby AND a diaper bag, plus any other items I may have purchased while out and about. So I have always used the baby carrier, which Raelynn loves as she gets to be snuggled up next to me (or her daddy if he's willing to give my poor back a break). We have taken the gargantuan stroller for a ride only a few times. Once to Raelynn's 100 Day Celebration, and the other few times just to my in-laws' home nearby.

But over the holiday (I got a 5-day weekend, bitches! Haha! Thanks Qingming, whoever you are!), we met one of our friends for lunch. She had her son 1 month after Raelynn was born. Incidentally, he is enormous too. Not in a fat and gross way. I mean that he is just going to be a very big and strong boy. He's already walking! Anyway, Anto had this great little stroller for Antonio. She said she paid less than 300 rmb for it and it folded up very easily. She'd complained that she'd had a bigger one that was just so difficult to use and her life was so much easier now that she'd gotten her new buggy.

Jeremy and I looked at each other and grinned. Our prayers had been answered! Finally, we found a stroller that wasn't overpriced that would actually fit our needs. So we ran out and got one. Check it out!
 It's stylish in red and black, no?
More importantly though, it takes only a few seconds to fold this right up. There's a handy strap so you can sling it right over your shoulder. It's very light-weight and it fits easily into the trunk of any taxi. Score!

For comparison, here is the old one:
Here it is folded up in our kitchen, where it currently resides and collects dust because it is inherently useless.

And here it is in use during Raelynn's 100 Day Celebration party. Obviously that was a while ago since she looks so small in this photo, but you can plainly see the ugliness of this thing and the massive size of it too. This thing would indeed be fun to ram into the ankles of passersby with my dear friend Aaron Gordon as we once suspected those maneuvering strollers many years ago of doing it intentionally. Likely before he ever makes it out here for a visit, we will wind up selling this monstrosity to someone who can actually get some use out of it.

Unfortunately, there is one more hitch in our plan. When we first put Raelynn into the new carriage, she had an absolute fit. Come to think of it, she's never been too happy in the big ugly one from her grandparents either. We tried several times while we were out shopping in Taidong to get her to sit in it, but each time, she burst into torrential tears and screamed "MAMA!" She even tried to climb out of it! When I picked her back up, I was astonished with how tightly she gripped me. Poor Raelynn! And poor Jeremy, who was now pushing an empty stroller about.

We decided that we should practice with her at home. Perhaps she would feel more comfortable about the stroller if she got properly acquainted with it in the comforts of our home. After all, she used to love when her daddy pushed her around the house in the clunky one (in the days before that wonderful Baby Bjorn Babysitter Balance chair that is). But this too went over like a lead balloon. Now we're not quite sure how to get her to ride in it. Whoever said, "if at first you don't succeed, try, try again," probably had a diva of a daughter who needed to be coaxed into riding in a baby carriage.

On a more serious note though, to any and all parents out there! Please leave me a comment or if you know me personally, email me or comment/message me on Facebook if you have any suggestions on how to get our soon-to-be-one-year-old drama queen to let us push her around like the princess she is.