Wednesday, July 29, 2009

So Maybe I'm a Little Tense, but...

"they" just released a report that pregnant women and health care workers will be the first to get the H1N1 vaccine. Not teachers who are around kids (whose hygiene is sometimes less than stellar). The CDC estimates that 40% of people in the US will get the virus over the next two years if the vaccine is not used. Those most vulnerable to contract and die from the virus include teenagers and ... infants! Guess what...I work with teenagers ALL THE TIME since I am a high school teacher and I have an infant at home. But I probably won't be allowed to get a vaccination because I am healthy and over 24. However, those that die most often from H1N1 have already compromised immune systems, or respiratory problems. Guess what! Payton has had RSV and he has asthma. This freaks me out because too-sick kids often come to school when they shouldn't and sneeze all over the papers I have to grade and make me sick. Also, there have been documented swine flu cases in our town. ICK! The one year of teaching that I did not get the flu vaccine (because there was a shortage and they wouldn't give it to me)...I got the flu. I was out of school for two weeks and felt really, really crappy.

So what I am saying is...if one my students gets the flu, gives it to me, who then gives it to Payton, I will officially feel like the WORST MOM EVER. This is when I start to feel a little guilty about the whole working mom thing.. anyhoo, there's not much choice in that department. However, the over-protective Mama Bear in me is coming up with a game plan to try to keep my boy healthy.

1. Lots of Prayer for my health and Payton's health.
2. I will change my shirt before I pick up Payton from the sitters.
3. I will look like a fool...but I am contemplating wearing a mask when I grade papers during flu season. And probably gloves too.
4. One thing of hand sanitizer on my desk, for me only. One near the shared students items in the back of the room and one by my door.
5. Students must blow their nose in the hallway or in the restroom, not my classroom. AND WASH THEIR HANDS!
6. Ask students to be aware of their health and stay home if they need to!
I know I sound like a freak and maybe I am a bit of a hypochondriac, but this epidemic is a tad scary and I don't want to see Payton sick. The RSV/ Pneumonia bit was hard enough to get thru last winter. Any suggestions or ideas? Comments?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The Children's Museum

Over the last few weeks, Payton and I, along with several other kind church members, have spent many hours getting to know several families who recently arrived from Ethiopia and Eritrea as refugees. Payton loves playing with the children and I have really enjoyed learning about their culture and helping the mothers adjust to their new lives in the US. Check out the pics of Payton's new friends playing at the children's museum. We had several drivers to help facilitate the play date. I know the kids had a blast! And I remembered why I teach high school and not elementary school. Whew!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Anti-Racist Parent

Let's be blunt here, I am a white mom to a black kid. Yes, people stare (but I like to tell myself they just stare because Payton is so darn cute :). Yes, I was laughed at yesterday by someone when they asked me whose baby I was holding and I said, "mine." They thought I was joking. I am not.

Some days these comments sting a little more than others.

There are things I am adjusting to and prejudices I am learning about. My own prejudices. And I am keenly aware of others'... trust me. What is most frustrating is when family, friends, and people I genuinely like and care about sometimes think I am oversensitive to the race issue. Or think it is silly that Wes and I drove around for three hours trying to find Payton a black barber to cut his hair (we were unsuccessful...even after 10! barber shops..LOOOONG story). Part of overcoming racism in America is that we all make an effort to identify our own prejudices. For me, that means that I can never really sympathize with my son 100% because I have enjoyed white privilege my entire life. I know this. I am aware of this. Therefore, Wes and I need to go out of our comfort zones to help Payton identify with his cultural background. As one writer at Anti-racist Parent (a blog I sometimes follow after seeing it on Karen's blog roll) put it, "racism in America is a dull ache." The author explains in this post (much better than I) why Wes and I are making these types of parenting decisions for Payton and why we are working hard to see our own prejudices and biases. We hope this helps Payton mature into a young black male that is comfortable with his skin color AND his parent's skin color and a young black male that will do his part to educate his friends when they may make comments that are insensitive or racist. My hope, also, is for those of you who think you are not racist or prejudiced, think long and hard about yourself. We are products of our environment. We all say and do things that are offensive to someone. There are things in American culture so deeply ingrained that they are hard to escape. Just think about the black Harvard professor who was arrested for breaking into his own home even after he provided documentation that the home was, in fact, his. All because of one police officer's bigotry. I bet this officer would claim he wasn't racist either.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Is He Really 10 Months Old!?

Yes. He is... and I can hardly believe it.
My little boy is growing up so quickly. I love watching Payton grow and change, although it makes me sad sometimes. Here are some of his latest tricks:
1. The whole arm wave. Payton no longer waves his hand bye-bye, instead he vigorously waves his right arm to say hello or goodbye. He also waves as soon as he sees himself in the mirror. I think that is conditioning at its finest, because every time we walk past a mirror, I say, "Say hello to Payton!" And he does.
2. Fishy face. Lately he likes to make fishy faces. I never demonstrated this face to him, this is something he picked up himself.

3. Kisses. He sucks his teeth to make a kissy sound back at us.
4. Payton still says Mama and Dada, sometimes correctly, but I am not 100% convinced it is for real. He makes a single syllable sound fairly consistently that sounds like "mo" when he wants more food. Maybe he is learning to say more? He also speaks his very own language when he is playing, regardless of his audience. It is pretty cute.
5. Payton is learning to walk but his balance is awful. He moves his feet too quickly for the rest of his body. I bought him a walker (the kind he can push, not the kind you put kids in) and he really enjoys it.
6. He continues to pull up, on everything, all the time.
7. The kid is fascinated by door stoppers. Ugh.
8. For the last few days he has pointed to the baby on the front of a book when I hold it in front of his and ask, "where is the baby?" If he does it a few more times, I might be convinced he actually understands me. But for now, I think it is probably a coincidence.
9. Payton got his first haircut. This is quite the story worthy of an entire post. Stay tuned. I'll just leave you with the before, during and after pick for now.

10. Payton is a love bug. He loves other babies, but they are usually scared by his forceful approach. He loves to touch them, hug them, and kiss them. Unfortunately, none of these actions are very gentle. He also loves to cuddle with us. I soak up every minute of it, because I know this cuddly phase is limited.
On that note, here is a pick of Payton with his blogger buddy Evie. We had the privilege of meeting Evie and her mommy, Karen, in Cville last Friday. The kiddos enjoyed dining together and playing at B&N bookstore while their mommies chatted. Evie and Payton's birthdays are only a few days apart! So cool!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

I saw this on the back of a truck yesterday...

and it really pissed me off!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Beachin' Goode Time 2009


Last week we enjoyed fun family vacation in Corolla! Here are some of the pics of Payton's first beach trip!
Payton is so serious about everything and thinks hard about everything! Payton was okay when he wasn't facing the waves, but as soon as we turned him around, he cried! I think the sound and the white caps were just too overwhelming. As my Aunt Linda said, "The beach is sensory overload for little kids..." I think she is right: the sounds of crashing waves, the feeling of strong winds in your face, the taste of salt water, the feeling of sand around your toes, the sounds of screeching sea gulls and laughter of people fill the air, and the bright beach chairs and umbrellas all around. SOOOO much to take in for the first time.
Playing in the surf with Daddy.

Crashing at the dinner table after a long day at the beach.

Mama's big feet, Payton's tiny toes.

Doesn't he look like a big boy!?

Mama and Payton heading down 216 stairs of the Corolla lighthouse. In all fairness, Wes hiked the kid up! Btw: I LOVE this carrier. I'm not sure what brand it is as I got it off of Craigslist, but I love the style (Mei Tai). It is sooooo comfy. I use it when I go shopping or on outings like this one. Heck, I can wear in comfortably for 2+ hours. Payton really likes it! MUCH, much better than the baby bjorn!

Family photo at the top of the lighthouse.

I love this pic of my two boys.

Awesome photo, Wes. You have a great eye!

The ONE and only crab we caught after 1 1/2 hours of crabbing. He was legally large enough to keep, but we didn't want to cook just one poor little crab, so he was set free. As my cousin Becky said, "Our tribe would perish! We can't even catch a crab." She revised it so say that she a Wes would survive since they caught one crab, but the rest of us were just out of luck." These are the kinds of conversations that happen after pulling up string after string with no crab on them... one starts to get a bit on the goofy side.

Check out Payton's eyes! How funny is that!?

I love my little man!

Payton spent many hours playing in his pool every day. Wes and I took turns lugging it down to the beach...ugh!

Joey, Alicia, Lily, Willow, and Judy turned Becky into Mer-Becky... complete with a seaweed bikini.

The Goode beach gang 2009 (kind of- this is not a great pic): Linda, Char, Judy, Keith, Katie, Tucker, Willow, Lily, Becky, Alicia, Joey, Mark, Ann, Darlene, Judy K, Diana, Wes, Payton, Note pictured: Susie, Tom, Sue

Payton and Mama catching some zzzzzzzzz after a long walk on the beach with Cousin Katie.

Joey and Payton! Joey does a great job of being Payton's big cousin!

Becky and Payton watching fireworks on July 4.

Payton and Mama getting their tan on... Ha.

Payton and his Grandma.

Payton putting his feet in the ocean for the first time.

Payton seeing the ocean for the first time.
Overall it was a great trip! The hardest part is always coming home.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Payton's Second Horse Show

Payton displayed his riding skills in the tot leadline class this past weekend. He looks so different than he did when he rode in the class at another farm as a two week old. It was a very special class because his 2nd cousin, Kathryn, also strutted her stuff on Rudi. While big cousin Joey led Rudi for her. What a fun day!

And Payton and Daisy win the blue! (Along with the other class leadline contestants :)

Look at his concentration... so serious!

He still needs to work on keeping his heels down!

Number 105 looks good. His pony, Daisy, is the BEST!