Nicholas’ favourite “chew toys” these days are his rubber ducks, especially the ones that are small enough for him to use as a soother. He’s crawling around all over the place with a duck stuck in his face – it’s hilarious! When the duck can’t be found, the ladybug is a good alternative – he doesn’t put the whole head in his mouth, though, just the antennae.
When we stayed at the Westin last month, the Kid Pack included a really cute explorer duck. I thought it was great, until I noticed that the paint was coming off when Nicholas chewed on it. Being the civic-minded individual that I am, I wrote a quick note to the Westin to let them know about it. Nothing else while we were there seemed cheap – just this duck. I expected a polite reply note, but the response I got was bordering on overkill: “… I also wanted to express my sincerest apologies for the distress that we have caused in regards to the toy for your son. I was very shocked and concerned when I read your letter, as this is the first time that I have ever heard of this happening. I am very happy to report that upon reading your comments I immediately forwarded them to the Westin representative in charge of the Westin Kids Club program. She has followed up with me to ensure that she will make the manufacturer of the rubber ducks aware of this, so that it may be addressed. Mrs. Fowler, thank you from the bottom of my heart for contacting us and letting us know, you were a tremendous help and I greatly appreciate your letter.” “bottom of my heart”?!? Was it really that big of a deal? I mean, come on … there’s saying thank you and then there’s over the top! I do appreciate that they seem to have taken my concern seriously, though.
I’m finding it really tough to get work done – Nicholas comes first (without question) and he’s much more interactive now than he was even a couple of weeks ago. He used to sit and play by himself for over an hour at a time – now he can’t do much more than 10 minutes before he wants to interact with me. That means that I can’t get any work done while he’s awake and his 2 naps have become limited to an hour (maximum) each. He has a couple of ways of letting me know he wants my attention – standing or crawling to me and calling “ma..ma” … and the more frustrating method … crawling directly to one of the 3 places that I’ve told him “NO TOUCH!” This is a game to him … and a huge source of irritation to me! The 3 places are (1) the electrical wires in the heat register, (2) the audio-visual equipment (VCR, receiver, DVD player, etc), and (3) one of the two floor lamps. I don’t know what to do, other than pull him away, say “no touch” and try to distract him with something else. Unfortunately, he’s not very easy to distract – he knows what he wants and has a phenomenal memory for where things are.
The “child swapping” or “pseudo-daycare” that Petra and I started doing in April has been working really well – we went up to 4 hours per day and then 2 days per week in May; now we’re increasing it to 3 days, starting next week. I’m glad our parenting styles are so similar – we both feel completely comfortable having each other spend so much time with our children. This should help me get closer to my goal of 15 hours per week of billable hours while still having lots of quality time with Nicholas. I definitely have gained a TON of respect for mothers of multiple children – something as simple as a diaper change takes on a whole new meaning when a second child is across the room, getting into something they shouldn’t when you’re mid-change.
Gee, I’m chatty today … I guess that’s what happens when he goes to sleep at 8:30 and is still out at 10:30. Tomorrow’s going to be a very busy work day and Patrick’s parents are coming to visit for the weekend. Should be fun!