Field Trip

Annabelle’s slogan today was “look ma, I can fit my entire hand into my mouth.”  How proud I am of her.



Okay, so experienced parents out there please tell me what is up with the fist eating. This goes way beyond her just sucking her thumb, although she does that too. Is this from teething?  Should I do anything about it or just let her eat her fist to her hearts content?


We have come so far on the sitting up.  She’s doing great, given she’s only been at it three or four days.  I need to get her behind the wheel of a car soon, she’s a quick learner.


Day 17_files\day 17 sitting up 1.MOV (spoiler alert: she falls over at the end of this one. But I put it in because she’s so darned cute when she falls over)


Day 17_files\Day 17 sticking the sitting.MOV (she’s moved up to weeble status: wobbles but doesn’t fall down)


We had some down time today after the sitting success where I propped my knees up and laid her down on my legs and then I leaned back on my arms and we were both comfortable. Then I started to tell her all about her Aunt Margaret and how much her Aunt Margaret loved her just from some photos and video. 



At the end of the visit I first witnessed a minor hissy fit with real crying.  The caregivers were really late bringing her bottle. So she was already antsy and fussy.  Then I made the poor decision to transfer the contents of the bottle from the hospital bottle to my Avent contraption. And that was just too much today. She started to cry.  I gave her the avent bottle but she would have none of it, crying loudly, turning away from it.  I tried futilely for about 8 minutes to get her to take the new bottle and then I gave in, transferred the formula back to the babyhouse bottle and she finally quieted down. But it was a tense few minutes as I tried to hold, squirming, crying Annabelle, pour the formula from a wide bottle to a thin bottle and recap it.  I asked Allison about it afterwards (since she has 3 kids already she is my oracle to the world of babies) and she said it’s probably because I am using a silicone top.  Apparently they make rubber bottle tops too and since the hospital bottles use a rubber top, that would be an easier transition. The silicone is apparently too hard whereas the rubber is nice and soft.  So Allison kindly gave me one of her rubber bottle tops that I am going to try out tomorrow.  You’d think a mericle girl would just be happy to get her food, no matter what the container was. Sheesh! 



The Lonely Planet Guide to Central Asia says about Kokshetau “there is nothing to interest a traveler. We suggest you skip it.”  Okay, so that’s a bit of a blow to those of us stuck here for six weeks. But the guide does condescend to give middling marks to Lake Boravoya, which is about 30 miles away from kokshetau (and therefore an hour and a half drive on these roads).  There is a beautiful lake region around the town of Schuchinsk and Lake Boravoya is the biggest and prettiest.  It’s interesting that the lakes region just rises out of this flat arid landscape. One minute you’re driving through brown dust and the next minute, you’ve entered a lovely pine forest and a very hilly, rocky region.  There is a story that the Kazakhs tell about the region. God was handing out mountains and oceans and beautiful forests to the rest of the world. He got to Kazakhstan and his bag of beautiful things was almost empty.  But a wily Kazakh challenged God to a game of hide and seek. So while God was looking for the Kazakh, the Kazakh snuck up behind him and cut a hole in the sack of beautiful locations. Well, there wasn’t much left in the sack (most of it had been liberally dumped in Switzerland) but what was left in the bag came out all at once through the hole and that is what formed Boravoya.


This was our field trip for today.  It was nice to get out of Kokshetau even if only for a few hours.  Oleg drove us around the lake and we stopped at several sites around the lake. It was sunny but really chilly and windy so we didn’t stay at each stop long.   And I got car sick.  Which isn’t surprising given that I get car sick on the teacup ride at the carnival.  put me in the back seat of a warm mini-van on very curvy roads and there’s not much anticipation about what’s going to happen.  So for most of the trip I was lying down and couldn’t see anything except when we stopped but that didn’t distract from the thrill of not being stuck in the apartment.