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Posts from the ‘Family’ Category

second child syndrome

Despite our best attempts to ensure parity so that Junebug later does not feel slighted by being the second child, at times we have struggled to match outcomes to our intentions.

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on smoking and other critical childhood concerns

Shortly after our surreal parent-teacher conference — while we were making our way around South Africa’s Garden Route — we received an end-of-semester progress report from Munchkin’s school. Unlike the over-the-top adulation in the previous midyear evaluation, this report struck a more balanced approach, praising Munchkin’s kindness, creativity, and academic progress while highlighting a number of behavioral attributes where “strengthening is needed.”

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turning corners

And just like that, 2017 is behind us – and so is the first half-year of Junebug’s life. Six months old and her personality coming into full focus, Junebug is a joyful handful – all smiles unless she isn’t getting what she wants and feels the need to assert herself.

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parental pleasures

How and when did he get so big? It’s a question we’ve been asking ourselves with increasing frequency of late, and one we are likely to keep asking for the foreseeable future now that we’ve started.

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four and counting

At four months, Junebug is definitely putting us through our paces. The fear of missing out apparently runs strong in her because no sooner do we get her to fall asleep than her eyes pop open again. D’s sister used to take ten-minute naps when she was Junebug’s age; the first time she slept more than half an hour in one stretch, D’s mom must have checked on her at least a dozen times to make sure she was still breathing. Junebug is trending in the same direction, with each “nap” typically requiring multiple interventions to lull her to sleep.

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bednight

— Papa, the baby’s crying on the monitor. She’s all alone in her room.

— What about mama?

— No, mama wants to play with me. You go get her.

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full house

Sometime in the dead of night, somewhere high above the dark waters of the Atlantic Ocean, Junebug marked the end of her second month of life with her first long-distance flight.

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the back story

Composing the speech for Junebug’s baby-naming ceremony cracked open the floodgates of S’s memory. Writing about her grandmothers’ lives and looking through old photographs of their younger days, S tried to reconcile her recollections with the stories she had heard from her parents – it’s not easy to paint a portrait of someone’s life when one only shares in that person’s twilight years.

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the memories remain

S’s sister recently sent us a New Yorker article that chronicled one French/American couple’s travails in choosing a name for their son. Charmingly witty, humorous, and filled with all sorts of quirky name trivia, the article also hit a nerve, for despite the fact that S had compiled a list of girl names she liked long before she was even pregnant with our firstborn (who turned out to be a boy), we had a hard time choosing a name for Junebug.

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fond farewells

All good things come to an end, and the best, it seems, reach their conclusion faster than most. We’ve tried to stay in the moment these past six weeks – enjoying the summer in Maine, catching up with friends and family, savoring our last few weeks alone with Munchkin, and then soaking up the newborn snuggles after Junebug was born. Alas, we have run out of moments, and D has begun the return journey to Rwanda while S and the kids will remain stateside for another month.

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