Friday, May 13, 2011

Our Day in Photos: May 13, 2011

A fellow blogger, who is also a fellow adoptive mom to some really handsome Ethiopian boys, has invited anyone who is willing to choose a day and take a photo every hour, chronicling what life is like on a typical day. I thought this sounded like fun, so here we go. Of course I managed to make it happen on Friday the 13th, but what can I do? Nothing. I'm not doing it tomorrow with a second kiddo in tow, that's for sure.

may 13, 2011, 8am

Zinashi is usually a later sleeper, and she's been having trouble falling asleep again, so she's not even close to waking up at this point. To nudge her closer, I turn off the sound machine, encourage the cat to join her, and do nothing to avoid making noise as I go about washing my face, dressing, and making breakfast. It's not long before she's awake, and I get her dressed and finish making breakfast. We all eat together and head out the door to drop Jarod off at work.

may 13, 2011, 9am

We've invited a friend, whose mama is a friend of mine, to meet us at the zoo, but the zoo isn't open yet, and our friends aren't ready yet anyway, so we hang out at Barnes and Noble. I flip through a book while Zinashi gets ready to do some serious interpretive dance to the smooth jazz they've got playing. We move throughout the children's department, and Zinashi is satisfied that we are all on our own. Lately she has taken to telling me, "I no like people, Mami. I no like lot of people at the store." I knew this already, but it's nice to know that my mama radar is working just fine. We exit the children's department for a bathroom break just as another family is coming in.

may 13, 2011, 10am

A little buna break in the cafe. The guy totally gets our order wrong, giving Zinashi a much larger hot chocolate than she can drink, and giving me a smaller mocha than I ordered. We choose a table, and then Zinashi directs me to a different table. She wants to have one all to herself. I pretend my feelings are hurt deeply, and she wanders over, "Talk Ethiopia, Mami?" We say a few words about injera while I consider the weather and text our friends to make sure that they still want to meet us even though the weather is enough to drive one straight to the sofa for a day of silent reflection on the meaning of life, followed by a little weeping. (In other words: grey and chilly.) Not only are they still up for it, but they're ready to go. We head to the car, and I eventually have to pick Zinashi up because the weather has affected her so negatively that she is shuffling along an inch at a time.

may 13, 2011, 11am

Here we see Zinashi and Mona not really seeing the tiger. All the animals thought the weather was craptastic as well, and they weren't interested in activity. Still, we pressed on, and saw some birds that were fighting over sticks to build their nest, some freshly-shorn sheep and llamas (I guess it was haircut day at the zoo recently), camels, and sleeping lemurs and meerkats.

may 13, 2011, noon

Finally, some activity! Nikita the polar bear won't let poor weather get in the way of his OCD. He must swim the same pattern over and over and over again. Luckily, this pattern brings him right into view, and the kids are thrilled.

may 13, 2011, 1pm

At home, wrapping up lunch. Zinashi is trying to delay naptime by eating veeerrrrrryyyyy slowly. Nice try, sister. Do I need to set the timer? She answers in the negative, requests that I save the rest of her food for later, and we head in for naptime. She struggles a little bit, as we've come to expect, but she does go to sleep just in the nick of time for...

may 13, 2011, 2pm

Laundry! This photo is a bit misleading because all I did with that laundry was eventually move it to a different location. I did, however, put in a new load, put some laundry in the dryer, and then decide that I needed a power nap while I waited for a load to dry. I fell asleep with one cat next to me and one cat sleeping on my outstretched arm. I woke twenty minutes later with my arm asleep and the cats upset that I was starting to stir. I paid some bills online and then it was time for...

may 13, 2011, 3pm

More laundry! Shortly after I took this photo, Zinashi called for me, and we folded this basket's contents together. Don't tell her this, but I'm about to refold her items. We need to work on a little precision. Once the laundry was folded, we headed out the door.

may 13, 2011, 4pm

Zinashi loves helping me grocery shop. She usually holds the coupons and the list, and much of the time she wants to choose the bananas. Today her energy was low, so she rode in the cart much of the time. As much as I feel sorry for her that she's tired and not sleeping well, I must admit that it's tons easier to get the shopping done if she's in the cart. We got what we needed, she got some stickers, and we headed home.

may 13, 2011, 5pm

In the car on the way home, she got upset to the point of real tears over something minor, and so when we got home, I offered her a big hug. She said, "Snuggle, Mami." I figured the turkey bacon and cheese could wait a bit to hit the fridge, so we got cozy on the desk chair. I snuck Photo Booth open, but it wasn't long before she was mugging for the camera and wanting to take photos herself. It kept her busy until it was time to get back in the car again.

may 13, 2011, 6pm

At the Apple Store, waiting for Jarod to be done with work. She loves to play this game, The Meadow, and I encourage it. She finally figured out that there were other games on those computers, but I am loath to introduce her to Dora the Annoying Explorer or any other noisy nonsense, so we just stick to The Meadow. When Jarod is ready to go, we walk out together to the car, with Zinashi swinging between us, holding both our hands.

may 13, 2011, 7pm

Dinner. Zinashi has been needing lap time at meals lately, so I moved her plate next to Jarod's. She misses her Ababi during the day, and this is a nice way for them to reconnect.

may 13, 2011, 8pm

Zinashi has had a bath and we've put on lotion, and tonight she's insisting that she can put on her jammies by herself. We let her try. After this, the routine is family toothbrushing time, three books with one of us, then rocking and going to sleep with the other one. Tonight is Jarod's turn for books and mine for rocking and coaxing to sleep. Oh boy! Can't wait!*

may 13, 2011, 9:27pm

9pm came and went while I was helping Zinashi fall asleep, and by the time I've soothed her into dreamland, it's time to rush through the rest of the evening. The cat has generously offered to help me put clean sheets on the bed. How nice. As soon as I'm done, I hit the shower.

may 13, 2011, 10pm

While most of the photos from the day are uploading, I watch a little bit of About a Boy and rub in copious amounts of benzoyl peroxide. Gotta love that adult acne! I moisturize, then settle in to write this post.

There is no photo. I'm about to hit PUBLISH and head to bed.

*We're pretty much back to square one with sleep issues. I don't want to talk about it, except that I do, in order that you'll feel sorry for our poor girl and for us. I find that naptime is easier, as it takes less time to help her fall asleep, and night is just a test of patience and compassion. The hardest part is that we have no idea what has caused this regression. We're riding it out, pretending that it will get better. Please pretend with us. We like having hope!


  1. Beautiful! Sorry about the sleep issues. I happen to think lack of sleep is the worst kind of torture. We will pray for your family. Love and kisses, the Sparling girls.

  2. Sometimes regression might happen right before a physical or developmental growth spurt, maybe? I'm sorry for the sleep issues, though, it can be so trying.

    I've been to that B&N. I was there last summer.

    Looks like a lovely day, despite the weather.

  3. Looks like fun, though for some reason I am sad about the polar bear...

  4. Very cool post. I am not going to pretend to know anything about Zinashi's sleep issues or what could help but this weekend I saw an AMAZING woman speak... Alicia Lieberman. She's a very respected psychologist that focuses on children and also traumatized children. Alicia herself moved from Paraguay to Israel to the US when she was young and understands things like culture shock and what it means to children as well as big and little traumas. Her most famous book is The Emotional Life of the Toddler but she has others. I'm not sure if you have any interest in parenting books - I know lots of people hate them - I just wanted to tell you how wonderful this woman is. Maybe she has a little nugget for you.

  5. I feel ya in the sleep department except it just went downhill two night ago. I'm hoping with you as I yawn... :)

  6. Nice to *blog meet* you! Your daughter is beautiful and I love how cozy your house seems. You did a lot in one day for not having much sleep! :) And just ride the sleep thing will pass (eventually).

  7. There have been times when I have felt just like Zinashi, "I no like people, Mami. I no like lot of people at the store." I just wish I had the guts to say it.

    And the adult acne thing? Totally sucks. I had ZERO pimples throughout puberty and they want to make me miserable at 44?! Grr. I ordered Proactive Solution about 6 weeks ago and it has done wonders. Honestly.

    Sending juju for your sleep issues to go away.

  8. love this post and how everyone is doing it. wasn't it fun?? i love her hair. did you read Oona's post about nighttime sleep issues with her kiddo? I thought it was really insightful.


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