Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Everything Changes

This is the only thing I've found to be true when it comes to raising my daughter. Just when you think something is going well or "working," she changes her mind. For the longest time (well, since birth), I was the preferred parent. Suddenly, in the last month or so, she has become very attached to SJ. It is a combination, I think, of genuinely loving her father, but she also knows that he is much softer than me. He will give her that cookie that she wants, and he will let her fall asleep on the floor at bedtime. Since he is only home at bedtime on weekends, he is now doing bedtimes then. When I announce it's bedtime, she clings to him like a cat saying "Young-ee appa! Young-ee appa!" and shoos me away. Then, she insists that he lay with her on the floor until she falls asleep. Then we move her to her crib. I really don't care anymore. I have spent so much energy worrying about her sleep that on weekends I gladly make my way to the computer room and let him handle it.

On weeknights it's my duty since SJ is not home. She usually knows better than to bother getting dramatic with me, but the last few weeks have been trying. She kicks up quite a fuss at bedtime, wanting hugs, water, books, more hugs, basically anything to put off going to sleep. I tried everything from getting angry, to staying really calm, singing Twinkle Twinkle so many times... drama every night. Drawn out stressful bedtimes. Then, about a week ago during one bedtime battle, I just threw my hands up in the hair, exasperated. She was crying and overtired. I didn't say anything. I just turned and silently walked out of the room. Then, all noise ceased and she went to sleep. I thought it was a fluke, but the next night it worked again. I sang Twinkle Twinkle, she protested a little, but I turned around and left without saying anything. Sleep. So I've been doing this for around a week and it's really weird. If I say anything, like "night night" or "go to sleep," she freaks out crying. If I am silent, she happily goes off to sleep. That's what works for now.

So I was just sitting here thinking, wow, this is all like a guessing game. She can't talk well enough to say, "Hey, mom, can you just get the heck out of here and let me sleep?" So until we are communicating more efficiently, the guessing game will continue! I wonder what her preference will be next month.

Friday, February 18, 2011

What's up?

Hey blogging friends, what's up? Hardly anyone is posting these days. I thought I was bad! Even though I don't leave comments all the time, I'm still reading!

By the way, my brain is still mushy.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Brain = mush

Here is a very honest post from me. I've had a great deal of trouble doing the work I have been assigned to do. It's really weird. The work is not that hard. It's boring, yes, but I could have been done it by now. Luckily the project manager is also behind schedule, or I'd be in deep poop by now.

So, yes, I'm having a hard time just buckling down and focusing. I've been wondering why this is. I didn't have this much of a problem in the past. Yes, we all have a tendency to procrastinate, but I have reached extreme levels now. At first I thought it was because I am sick and tired of ESL, and that could be a part of it, but I think it's something else (a lot of people hate their jobs but still do them!).

I was reading an article the other day about the physical effects of the Internet on our brains. Using the Internet only five hours a week significantly changes the way your brain works. The part responsible for short term memory is very active and the brain seems to seek more constant stimulation, and as a result, has a hard time focusing on larger chunks of information (sorry for the vague explanation. I'm no physicist.). This really got me thinking about the way my brain has been behaving lately. Something feels off. I am quite jittery these days and can't seem to relax, and of course, I cannot focus on tasks that need to be completed - and they've got to get done -- like, by the end of this week!

I was comparing my habits at present to those a few years ago. A few years ago, I used the Internet, but not nearly as much as I do now. I used to be an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction, and was a regular customer at the great What the Book used bookstore. I have not read a book in the past two years (beyond baby-related books and various magazines and articles). That's embarrassing to admit, but it's true. I also used to love watching documentaries and even started a very active group on Ravelry for documentary addicts. Again, I haven't watched a documentary in around two years.

So I was thinking that perhaps my poor brain is just in need of some exercise. Surely, like our bodies, our brains must need to be active to stay in shape. I think my brain has become kind of like a couch potato...a pile of mush.

There may be other factors involved in why I'm having such a hard time concentrating on my current projects, but I think I need to make some changes in my habits. I really don't want to become a lazy person, physically or mentally.

Vibroy Portable Speaker System

Okay, another product review. This is the last one too, since I only applied to test two products.

This little thing is pretty cool. It's by a Korean company called Xenics and it's called the Vibroy. I'm not sold on the name choice, but oh well, it's a neat product. It's very simple. Plug it into your mp3 player, phone, or computer, stick the sticky end on any surface and you've got instant speakers. Naturally, some surfaces sound better than others. I think half the fun in this product is testing out different objects to see which give the best sound. To me, a board book standing up up gives the best sound. The company, Xenics, claims a cardboard box to be best, but sometimes I find that sound a little too hollow. It probably depends on the box. Anyway, that's a matter of personal preference.
This takes two AAA batteries and the sticky pad can be cleaned with a damp cloth if it starts to get unsticky. It's very small. It can easily fit in your pocket or purse, so it's much easier to take out with you rather than speakers. I uploaded a video review to youtube, so check it out. Sorry if you don't like my music choice. All I've got on that little mp3 player is jazz, blues, some old pop, and knitting podcasts. Call me a geek, I don't care.

Anyway, check out the Vibroy. I heard they are officially launching the product very soon.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


I haven't been posting much, I know. But I'm not abandoning the blog. It's just been a bad time to post. I've had to focus on other things and with the amount of time I spend at the computer because of work, I don't really feel like updating my blog at the end of the day.

That should change soon because I am approaching the deadline for this project. I'm a bit worried, though, as I don't believe the project manager has looked at any of the material I have written. If he really hasn't, there could be lots and lots of revisions to do. I could have emailed or called him to push him to read my stuff, but I think I was subconsciously avoiding the stress of having to deal wtih revisions. It's too late now. The last student book will be submitted early next week and then it's on to the workbooks -- if everything is okayed. Like I said, though...I don't have a good feeling. I have a feeling this guy is bogged down with several projects and has been avoiding dealing with mine.

Other than this, everything is the same. Grace is getting cleverer by the day (it's scary) and I'm just focusing on work. I'm really looking forward to a bit of freedom in March. I plan to go through all my belongings and decide on shipping, finally finish Sejin's immigration application, knit, take photos, and see my friends.

Speaking of knitting, this is the first thing I've finished in quite a while. It was a fairly quick knit but the sewing up was really annoying, as it always is with knitted toys. I really like him. Grace slept with him the first night after he was finished, but she has since rejected him. She seems to have a new favourite soft toy every week. Her trusty bear is the king -- he goes most places with her these days -- but she usually chooses a second softie favourite. This week it's "bunny."
Anyway, here he is. (BTW, yes, she's wearing boys pajamas. These are the ones she picked out at Homeplus at the sale table. I thought for sure she'd go for the Pororo or Cocomong ones, or even the Disney Princesses, but she liked something about the duck and guinea pig on these ones and cried for them. Toddlers.)