Sunday, July 18, 2010

This is bananas

My daughter is not a good teethe-r. She does well during the day, followed by a mediumish okay evening, all culminated with a drool, scream, not-gonna-sleep-cause-it-hurts bed time routine. We have tried Tylenol, Advil, amber necklaces with "soothing healing oils", teething tablets, and ora-jell -- all together. Nothing works well enough to allow the over tired child to sleep.

We've got a few tricks, one is new. We put her in the middle of a blanket. I grab two corners, and my wife grabs the other two corners. We pick up the blanket with the unhappy baby in the center, and swing her back and forth. Immediate silence and delighted leg kicks. This is a wondrous new discovery but as it turns out, this requires two people and long sustained swinging is not possible as arms quickly fatigue.

The other sure way to soothe the screamy child is to take a trip to the mail box. Our mail box is roughly 150 yards away past lots of houses. As soon as I grab the keys, the ornery babe and open the door, like an obedient puppy she's silent. You see, there is a very special treat that she loves so much that she'll quit all fuss in order to enjoy. Trees.

There are 8 accessible trees from our front door to the mailbox. She knows exactly where they are and which she likes best. She will immediately sit back in my arms in a reclined position and stare up at the first tree in front of our house. She'll coo happily and tell me that she's enjoying the tree - completely forgotten about the mouth pain.

When we move away from one tree she objects until we arrive at the next, where happiness returns. This will continue until we get to the mail box, where no accessible trees grow. It isn't simple at this juncture: baby, plus operation of the key, extracting the mail, re-locking the box, securing the key and figuring out how to hold the mail while balancing the baby. She hasn't been dropped yet. What is bad? There are no trees near the mail box, causing dismay in my daughter.

Upon departure from the mailbox, we return to her favorite tree. I believe it is a Chinese Elm that has a large canopy, enough for father and daughter to stand under. As the wind rustles the branches and leaves, she'll look up at wonder immediately settling down from her time spent at the mailbox without a tree for pacification. As we make our way back to the house counting down the trees, she protests each time we leave. By the time we return to the house, she is usually in a better mood.

My daughter - the arborist.

1 comment:

  1. I need to start sending Sadie letters so she'll actually receive something out of the mailbox ...what a lovely way to calm your sweet little girl! Hmmmm, Trees...have you considered moving to Oregon???? -Liz