Wednesday, June 24, 2009


I've lived a sheltered life, so I'm definitely not talking acid flashbacks here.

No, it's parenting flashbacks.

My sister in law just had her second wee bundle of joy, a barely under 9 pound boy who is lovely. My thought was poor sister in law, good thing the horrible part only lasts 6 weeks or so.

Yeah, nobody really tells you how awful newborns are. And honestly, as you glow through pregnancy, basking in thoughts of how great it'll be when baby arrives, you wouldn't believe them. But they are horrible. You never know when they'll sleep, or for how long. Is baby asleep for 2 hours - I should nap. 20 minutes? I should do the dishes. Or shower. But baby is, of course, unable to let you know this vital piece of info. So you nap and get woken up just as you hit REM sleep. Or do the dishes, then the laundry, then a few other dull chores, then figure baby will wake up soon, no point napping, then kick yourself as you stagger around exhausted, wishing you'd napped.

But once they smile and coo, you turn into the puddle of love struck mush you knew you'd be all through your pregnancy. So I am looking forward to seeing my wee nephew in a few weeks...and will tolerate visits before then, because my sister in law is many kinds of awesome and I'll do whatever I need to to help her out and let her know I think she's awesome.

All this gives me flashbacks to the good stuff, too. Like Westley, after being weaned at the insane age of 3, telling me he liked it when my milk things worked. If any kid is going to marry a women with HUGE tracts of land, it's him. And no, mine are not even close to Pamela Anderson. More like Gwen Stefani, pre-implants. But to a wee baby, they are perfection, and my assumption on his future size preferences are based on proportion. My boobs were about the size of his head when he was born, so won't he assume head sized boobs are about right? Ouch, my back hurts just thinking about it!

I also remember all the stuff babies seem to end up with. Swings. Change pads. Diapers by the gros. Wipes by the tonne. Several outfits a day. Bathtub. Carriage. Bed. Bassinet for napping. Baby carriers, for front and back. Slings. Receiving blankets. I'm amazed we didn't lose the kids amongst all the stuff. Boy, do I ever not miss those days! I've always been a person who likes kids who can talk.

Good luck, sister in law. Your wee boy is perfect. And you will do a rocking awesome job.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

My brain hurts!

I'm trying to figure out a data warehouse. It doesn't yet exist, so no data play allowed - only reading of schema and data dictionaries. Except the dictionaries aren't readable, they are web pages that scroll on for ages with every field clickable to another unending page. The schema are jpg files that print best on paper roughly the size of my cube.

I am supposed to focus on this and become the expert for my area. Happily, I will have help. Sadly, I don't know where to begin. What do I need to know? I dunno.

There are lots of things I don't know. Some I don't want to know - like how many boys has my daughter kissed? I'd prefer to pretend that I know the answer, and that it's 1. Some require base knowledge I lack, like assessing the quality of a scientific study. And some are boring, to me at least, like sports stuff. I know the NHL is in final playoffs now. I don't know who's playing, or if it's the final final or semis, and I don't care.

There are things nobody knows. Is there really an invisible being that can't be detected with any of our scientific instruments, who has left no proof of existence yet managed to make everything? I think no is a pretty safe answer, but I'm in a minority there. So I try to focus on what I think I know. I think many aspects of religious teachings are harmful. Teaching followers that being gay is bad, or that women should be subservient, or that condoms shouldn't be used even to protect against AIDS is just wrong. I think that followers of a religion have an obligation to protest those aspects of their religion that are wrong. I don't care how they protest - leave the church, tell your priest/rabbi/preacher/yogi/shaman/chief grand chicken pooba, write the leaders, I don't care. But do something and encourage others to do something, if you care about your religion. Otherwise, it deserves to disappear. If you don't care enough about something to improve it, how important is it, really?

Right. Soapbox away. I read that if you pour hydrogen peroxide on a pine cone, you get huge flames. This I really want to try, but I don't want the kids to catch me. Hmmm. This is where desire for fun and being a responsible parent conflict. I'll keep thinking on how I can remove that conflict. Fire is fun. Getting burned, not so much.