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May 21, 2002
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Cooking And Walking With Jet

9:49 pm: I really enjoyed today. It was a very odd mix of stuff. Jet got up around 4 and had problems getting to sleep until 6:30 and then he and John got to sleep until 7:30. John didn't use the gum stuff on him, and we'll try it tonight if Jet seems to not be going right back to sleep. Jet did okay until 4. Jet woke at midnight, but John simply put him on the floor and Jet went right back to sleep. At 1:30, Jet woke up, nursed and went right back to sleep, again on the floor.

With Jet sleeping on the floor so much more often, now, I thought about it this morning, and this evening we moved the old futon up into Jet's room. We added sheets, blankets, and pillows. I figure that even if Jet doesn't sleep on it, John and I can sleep on it while being with him, far more comfortably than sleeping on the floor. John turned off the monitor when he went up to take care of Jet this morning, so that would have worked out really well.

So John's a little tired today. He did take care of Jet while I went into work and did a first thing in the morning meeting. I was mildly nuts and volunteered to fix a bug. The problem is that I don't have a development setup and I haven't had one for over a year. And I know that it takes a while to set one up on the PC. I did have a pretty good setup on my Solaris box, so while I was at work I tested it to make sure it worked. It did.

This meant that I had to write the code right the first time, and that I could only test optimized code. The problem, though, was simple enough, and I have faith in the solutions that I've been given and in the folks that have signed up to do the code review and the verification. Bob volunteered to build it and test it on the PC as his setup is good and solid. So I think we have a solution.

I went home at noon with a good idea of what I had to do. I found John and Jet out in the front yard. Jet was wandering about and when I came out he came to me for a hug. I hugged him solidly and John told me that Jet had had a short nap at Joan's, and he'd eaten a little bit of food, but not much. John went up to work while I played with Jet for a little while and then I made a sandwich for myself out of pastrami I bought yesterday, a bit of mustard and mayo and a big fistful of sprouts.

I let Jet play with the basket of sprouts while I was making my sandwich. Jet pulled out a lot of the onion sprouts and ate a few of them, but left a pile of them on the floor. I picked up a lot of them and piled them on my sandwich. When Jet saw the finished sandwich, he kept trying to pull the bread off the top. I shook my head and took him over to his chair and set him in it and cut a corner off my sandwich. He pulled it apart and ate it, avoiding the pastrami to start, but when he'd finished everything else he nibbled the pastrami and then ate it with gusto.

Then he asked for more of my sandwich. I ended up giving him some off of each of the four corners, and making a whole other half a sandwich so that he could eat more of it as well. He munched the sprouts as well as the meat and bread and also munched on one Frito, which he mostly spit out. I also gave him a sippy cup of milk to go with his sandwich and he drank that very happily as well.

I then got a dozen giant grapes, broke them in half to pull out the seeds, and Jet grabbed a couple of halves and ate them as well. He really liked those, but he did spit out the skin. Then I pulled out one of my Little Debbie Swiss cakes, and he cheerfully ate half a roll as well. He loved it.

With a full stomach, Jet and I played a little while, and then he tried to climb into my lap to nurse. Not really for the food, but so that he could go to sleep. I nursed him and he went to sleep around 2. So I got to go upstairs and try out my theories about the code. That was cool. The stuff I wrote, too, compiled just fine, while I was in the midst of a teleconferencing meeting, and that was a good use of my time, I thought. I could listen to what was going on and do something useful at the same time.

I like that.

Jet woke up at 4, and I went down and nursed him and then played with him while John was working. Jet was a little sneezy and clingy, but happier after the nursing. He and I watched cartoons, climbed on the giant teddy bear, and Jet climbed up on the footstool to try his luck again at bouncing on the rocking mechanism. He and I played with his fire truck, his Curious George, and his cookie jar.

We also wrestled on the floor, he didn't pull my hair, again, and patted me on the head happily. He had me read him several books, which he flipped through faster than I could read.

At 5:30 we made dinner. Jet didn't want me to leave him, so I picked him up, tucked him in the sling and carried him as I cooked. I found the back of the hip sling hold very useful for having him in the sling while I worked when I didn't want him within arms reach of what I was doing. He could peer around my arm as he really wanted to see what I was doing.

I remember Isabel giving me a cartoon strip where the little kid is pulling on Mommy's pants, and Mommy's saying, "I can't cook and hold you at the same time." And the little kid goes, "Learn!!" I can hold Jet and cook at the same time. That's pretty cool.

We had a lot of leftover meats, the two extra chops and some grilled chicken were all leftover. So I just had to do side dishes. Jet wasn't going to eat all the brown rice I'd made for him, so I used some of that, along with some frozen broccoli to make a rice and broccoli casserole, with some white sauce, cheddar, chipotle, pepper and paprika. I topped it with crushed Ritz crackers and popped that into the oven along with some Krusteze corn bread. I had about run out of the Trader Joe's corn bread, so I was trying other mixes.

Jet was fascinated by the whole thing. He helped grease the square pan for the bread. He almost got ahold of the cracked egg. He eyed the level on the milk in the measuring cup, and he helped me mix everything together with the whisk. He was fascinated by the mechanism of the spatula in getting all the batter out, and craned his neck to see how it worked.

He watched me make a roux with a teaspoon of butter and flour and how I mixed in the milk until it was thick. He watched me grate the cheese and when I poured it in and mixed it to make the sauce for the rest. He was really great about keeping out of the way even when he was riding in front. I can really understand how this would teach a kid about every day life and chores, by riding with the adult doing all the chores. He was learning with every thing I was doing. I would not be at all surprised if by three or four he was able to do some of the cooking himself, with the help of a step stool.

He was really calm the whole time I was cooking, and he was very involved in watching what I was doing. I liked that.

When I put him in his chair when dinner was finished, I gave him a bowl with some of his brown rice in it. He sat down quietly and played with the rice, eating the occasional grain as we settled ourselves for the meal. He had stolen a few sprouts while we were making salad, too, and munched them thoughtfully as we settled. He begged a chicken leg, and got some of the corn bread as well, and he ate while we were eating.

Jet's definitely getting the idea that meal times are when we all sit down and eat. I'm very glad of that. I hope it lasts a long time.

After dinner, we went out for a walk.

During my meeting, the wind picked up. That's a mild understatement. It was reported that there were gusts over 60 mph. It was wrecking havoc with some fires that would have been, otherwise, minor. It even blew the roof off one warehouse. It was rattling every window in the house, pounding on the walls and roof, and tossing the trees around as if Jet had picked them up and was shaking them. It was so loud it was an effort to listen to the meeting. And when it settled even a little, the lowering of the noise level was a relief.

So we were a mite tentative about going out for a walk, but the wind had died down tremendously as the heat of the day had gone away. So Jet got his sandals on and the three of us headed out.

Jet was entirely under his own steam and he was so excited about going out for a walk, that he was running out the door and wiped out on the porch. John carried him down the steps to the driveway and Jet started running the moment John set him down and Jet wiped out again. This time I heard the distinctive tonk of Jet's head hitting the concrete. Jet got up frowning a little, but he was wearing his baseball cap, so he didn't get scraped at all. So he just upped and started running again. This time he hit the gravel and skidded for a good foot before catching his balance and going again.

John said, "We need a shirt with two sides. One that reads, "WHAT are you eating?!" and the other that reads, "Cool your Jets, Jet!"" Right. Slow down, Jet. Ha. He charged across the street, right into the rough on the other side. John had to pick him up to head down the right street. While John was carrying Jet, John explained that when they'd gone out to pick up the mail, Jet had done the Internet Chicken crossing. Jet had gone halfway across the road, and then turned right and started running down the yellow stripe.

I still don't understand the joke, other than it is really funny. But it made me giggle to think of Jet as an Internet Chicken.

Jet pretty much ran three quarters of the way down the road. He would slow down for gravel or obviously hard footing, but mostly he'd be laughing and yelling and whooping and walking as fast as his little legs could carry him. We hadn't even bothered with the stroller. I just walked ahead of him and kept going. I did some of it backwards, to give him good practice for coming to me. Much like with puppy Fezzik, when I'd backpedal while calling him and make a huge deal of him when he got to me. It did make it so that Fezzik would come when called, usually. I have some hope that it'll help with Jet for a few years at least.

We made it all the way down to the end, and then started coming back. It's uphill, and usually Jet quits fairly early on, but this time he just got kind of determined, and stomped his way along towards me. We stopped about half way as there was a guy trying to push a car with a lawn tractor. John offered to help him, and when we stopped, Jet came right up to me and grabbed my legs. It's his usual sign for "Pick me up, please."

So I picked him up and Jet cuddled in and we watched the big guys push the car where the guy wanted it. He thanked John, and we went on our way.

Jet was really tired when we got home and he tried to nurse for a while, but after a big cup of milk, he settled quietly with me while we watched 24. John got the air popper started, and Jet climbed me to see, so I took him over to John and John took him and they watched the corn pop and then they sat together while eating popcorn. And we watched the end of the series. Oof.

That was excellent.

We've been following that series, probably the only one we've been able to follow. But it was well worth it to the bitter end.

Jet fell asleep nursing, solidly. John put him on the futon, and he just went right to sleep there. No protests the way Jet has protested being put in the crib. So I think this might work out pretty well. John went right to sleep, and I'm about to follow.

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