KathyBou’s Blog

A sampling of things that are going on and around.

Archive for August 2009

Can’t think of a good title

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I can’t think of a post title, or even of one particular topic that would be good to expand upon. Which is ironic because last week I was organizing our media storage and was laughing at some TV episodes titles using  not-so-clever puns on song/movie titles, clichés or quotes.  For example:

  • There’s No Place Like Homecoming
  • Between a Sign and a Hard Place
  • Good Shit Lollipop
  • Lude Awakening
  • Absinthe Makes the Heart Grow Fonder
  • O Brother, Where Bart Thou?
  • Gone with the Will
  • You’ve Got Yale
  • The Age of Dissonance
  • Remains of the J

“You’ve got Yale”?  Sigh… I tried to make a correlation between the type of show and the quality of the episode names but it wasn’t immediately obvious, and then I lost interest.  I think the TV show Friends may have had the best idea about episode names.  It’s easy to identify these:

  • The One with the Princess Leia Fantasy
  • The One Where Chandler Can’t Remember Which Sister
  • The One with the Chick and the Duck
  • The One with the Jellyfish
  • The One with All the Rugby


Written by Kat

August 31, 2009 at 10:19 am

Posted in Computer, tv

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Pour petits pieds

with 3 comments

Everyone needs socks, right?  Especially new babies, from what I’ve read, who have trouble regulating their body temperature.

We have a drawer of socks, small shoes, and booties.  I’m wondering though, since they are so tiny, just how long they will actually fit.  A month?

From the Checklist

What to wear:
_ Four sleeping outfits or one-piece sleepers
x Six side-snap T-shirts
_ Four to six one-piece undershirts that snap around the crotch
_ A small baby cap
x Six pairs socks/booties
_ Two to three soft, comfortable daytime outfits. Only a few in newborn size.

Written by Kat

August 27, 2009 at 5:29 pm

Posted in bebe baby, clothes, family

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Car owners once more

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We picked up our car on Thursday afternoon.

It was a strange day.  There was a heat wave, dry heat coming from Africa, so stepping outside felt like walking in a blow dryer.   D ended up having one of those crazy days at work, but we had agreed to meet up early afternoon so we could be at the dealership in time to fill out car insurance forms and do whatever else was needed so we could take the car home.  So after my weekly midwife appointment, I came home, ate, and packed a water bottle full of ice and water and met up with D at the main train station at 2 p.m.

We walked roughly 2 km from the closest train stop to the dealership, noting one sign said the temperature was 35 C (95 F).  Crazy!  The water bottle came in handy.  Once there, we proceeded to the office to finalize the car  insurance.  None of the building was air conditioned; each agent had a personal desk fan going as everyone tried not to sweat in their work clothes.   The only agent who spoke English had been only been with the company for 2 days and had to relay questions we had to his boss and was somewhat unfamiliar with the forms.

For all that, the whole process went smoothly.  The dealership had taken care of re-registering the car, as well as getting the new plates.  Our car saleswoman, Silke, met up with us after the insurance was finished and wanted to show us how to work the radio, etc. but we told her we were ok there.   With all the travel for work, we have gotten to know how most of the current cars’ dashboards function.

We went for a late dinner out that night, at a place we’ve been wanting to try for forever.  We thought it was French from the outside but it turned out to be Italian.   We sat in the courtyard, it was still very warm, under a large, square, terrace-style umbrella.  Just after the appetizers arrived it started to rain.  Really rain.  A few other parties had just left, so the waiter hastily pulled all the tables under the umbrella too.  So there we were, luckily sitting at the table closest to the center of the umbrella, in a Florida worthy rain storm, surrounded by strewn tables and chairs, eating mushrooms and laughing.

Written by Kat

August 25, 2009 at 11:56 am

Posted in family, germany, Life, love, shopping

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So sweet

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This pale blue knitted sweater, bonnet, and booties set was a gift from Aunt Pat.

She’s very talented, don’t you think?

Written by Kat

August 24, 2009 at 3:31 pm

Posted in bebe baby, clothes, family

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For sleeping

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This IKEA crib turns out to be the perfect size/color for our room, has good safety reviews, and is inexpensive.  Hooray for something finding something we genuinely like that is not pricey!  On the same trip we picked up a matching mattress, mattress pad,  and sheets from a Dutch baby store called Prenatal.

These adorable sleepers are from D’s mother.  She found them at the Quebec baby clothing store Souris Mini.  We’ll definitely be stopping back there at Christmas time, maybe for some cold weather items.

From the Checklist

Bed / Bed Linens:
x Crib
x Crib mattress
x Two to three fitted crib sheets
_ Four or more waffle-weave cotton receiving blankets for swaddling baby
x Two mattress pads
_ One to two waterproof liners

Diaper duty:
_ Diapers. Disposables: One 40-count package of newborn
_ Diaper pail
_ Diaper bag

What to wear:
x Four sleeping outfits or one-piece sleepers
x Six side-snap T-shirts
_ Four to six one-piece undershirts that snap around the crotch
_ A small baby cap
_ Six pairs socks/booties

Written by Kat

August 19, 2009 at 5:15 pm

Posted in bebe baby, clothes, family, quebec

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Cleanliness is next to ..

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*Also sent to our mothers.

Written by Kat

August 18, 2009 at 3:15 pm

Posted in bebe baby, clothes, family, Fun

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To the pool

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This past weekend was sunny and beautiful.   For all the rain we usually get, this year has been a dream.  Saturday after lunch we decided that we needed to find a pool, outdoors.  So we threw a bag together and hopped on the train to Aachen.  We’d finally go check out the famous Carolus Thermen Bad (Baths).

We spent the afternoon relaxing and splashing in and out of the multiple pools.  The outdoors pools were slightly cooler, around 33 C (~90 F), and had the sun we were seeking, but I’d imagine this place is just as much fun in the winter too.  The water was mineral rich,  and there were two smaller cold and hot spas for alternating if you like that kind of thing.  D tried them but I refrained as hot water is a no-no during pregnancy.   The rest of the pools were perfect for my 8 months pregnant body, and felt great.

Written by Kat

August 17, 2009 at 8:39 am

Posted in family, fitness, Fun, germany

The Happiest Baby on the Block: DVD Review

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The Happiest Baby on the Block, by Dr. Steven Karp

We  watched The Happiest Baby on the Block over the weekend.  Not sure now where I’d first heard about this book or DVD, both with the same name, but it worked out really great to get it in video form so we could watch it together.

Just over an hour long, the main points of the video are techniques on how to sooth a baby, especially a fussy baby, in the first 3 months of life, which the author calls the 4th trimester.  These small maneuvers trigger the baby’s inherent “calming reflex”, and he made it look easy and mostly natural.  Some parents probably already know these things, or have figured them out on their own, but for us it was really valuable information.

I was surprised at how tight a proper swaddle needs to be, and also, that when one Shh’s a baby, the “SSHHH”  needs to be at least as loud as the baby is crying, which can be pretty loud.

Again the DVD format is great because besides being able to watch it together, it allowed us to see the  multiple soothing techniques, and visually watching them used together made it all very clear.  Even if we don’t have too many baby meltdowns, it’s comforting to know we have some tricks in mind if we need them. A definite recommendation to other new or soon-to-be parents.

Written by Kat

August 16, 2009 at 5:57 pm

Posted in bebe baby, Books, family, newborn

Tagged with , , ,

Side-snap t-shirts

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I love these little shirts for some reason. They are just so dainty, and they remind me of the white t-shirts D wears all the time – only so very much smaller.

Pretty sure they were part of a gift from my mother. I found them online here.

From the Checklist

What to wear:
_ Four sleeping outfits or one-piece sleepers
x Six side-snap T-shirts
_ Four to six one-piece undershirts that snap around the crotch
_ A small baby cap

Written by Kat

August 13, 2009 at 5:15 pm

Posted in bebe baby, clothes, Fun

Tagged with , , ,

The countdown begins

with 5 comments

The last month.

Wow, it seems like the time has gone by fast.  We’re in the home stretch now, and, yay, I have more time to post, in theory.  We’ve had a really good pregnancy so far, and we feel lucky for this health and happiness, and blessed to have such supportive families.

I had the idea, a couple of weeks ago, to do a blog countdown of sorts in August.  About what?  One of the big priorities for us, in these last weeks, is to make sure we have everything ready.  Everyone is asking us if we’re ready, but the question begs another question, what does being ready really mean?  According to D’s mother, it most definitely means having all the baby clothes washed.  I think she’s asked D this 3 or 4 times already.  And yes, we were already planning to do this, but we are procrastinating on this particular task a little.

A couple of months ago I decided we needed a finite list of “stuff” we need to buy.  Obviously we needed a crib, but how many sheets?   What about blankets?  And how many bottles?

There is so much information online that it can be a little overwhelming.  I found this list, the Newborn Necessities Checklist, provided by Consumer Reports, which I modified for us.  Is it comprehensive?  I’ll let you know in a couple of months.

Our Newborn Checklist

Getting Around:
_ Car Seat
_ Stroller
_ Travel crib

Bed / Bed Linens:
_ Crib
_ Crib mattress
_ Two to three fitted crib sheets
_ Four or more waffle-weave cotton receiving blankets for swaddling baby
_ Two mattress pads
_ One to two waterproof liners (for crib or bassinet)

Diaper duty:
_ Diapers. Disposables: One 40-count package of newborn (birth weight under 8 pounds) or of size 1 (birth weight over 8 pounds).
_ Diaper pail
_ Diaper bag

What to wear:
_ Four sleeping outfits or one-piece sleepers with attached feet
_ Six side-snap T-shirts
_ Four to six one-piece undershirts that snap around the crotch, i.e. ONESIES
_ A small baby cap (although the hospital will probably give you one)
_ Six pairs socks/booties
_ Two to three soft, comfortable daytime outfits. Get only a few items in newborn size. Then, go for clothing in the 6-month size; your baby will grow into it quickly. But don’t buy baby sleepwear that’s too big: it’s a safety hazard.
_ Cotton sweater or light jacket

Summer accessories:
_ Brimmed hat

Winter accessories:
_ Snowsuit with attached mittens or fold-over cuffs, or heavy bunting
_ Heavy stroller blanket
_ Warm knit hat

Feeding time:
_ Three to five nursing bras
_ A box of washable or disposable breast pads
_ Breast pump if you expect to use one (manual or electric)
_ Four small baby bottles with newborn nipples for storing expressed breast milk
_ Bottle-drying tree
_ Bottle brush
_ Insulated bottle holder for diaper bag (the hospital may give you one)
_ Three packs of cloth diapers or burp cloths
_ Breastfeeding cover
_ Lanolin cream

_ Plastic infant bathtub
_ Three soft hooded towels
_ Two packs of baby washcloths
_ Baby body wash that doubles as shampoo
_ Pair of blunt-tip scissors or baby-sized nail clippers
_ Zinc-oxide-based diaper rash ointment
_ Soft brush and comb
_ Mild laundry detergent

Medicine cabinet essentials:
_ A pain-and-fever reducer recommended by your baby’s doctor, such as Infant’s Tylenol
_ Cotton pads/swabs
_ Nasal aspirator
_ Digital rectal thermometer
_ Rubbing alcohol
_ Petroleum jelly

Keeping baby happy:
_ Pacifiers

_ On parenting, and for the baby (English/French)

Baby proofing:
_ Gate for stairs
_ Electrical covers

Extras: Nice but optional:
_ Baby monitor
_ Changing table
_ A rocker or glider
_ Sling or strap-on soft carrier
_ Boppy, a doughnut-shape pillow designed to make holding baby during
_ Infant swing
_ Bouncy seat
_ Night-light

That’s alot of stuff right?

We’ve accumulated quite a bit over the last two months, and I’ve been researching/reading reviews about what to buy off and on for at least the last 6.  A big help came during our trip, from both the baby shower (my family) and D’s family, which I’ll post about eventually.  So over the next few weeks the idea is that I’ll post some of the items from the list, and sometimes describe why we picked out what we did.

Written by Kat

August 12, 2009 at 5:51 pm