Wednesday, September 16, 2009

First Haircut

Before The Cut

He's almost two, but our little boy just received his first haircut. For most of his life, we didn't cut his hair because he grew it so slowly. More recently, we were afraid to cut his beautiful curls off for fear we'd never see them again. Happily, the cut is completed and we found that the shorter hair is still curly!

We took him to the most adorable salon called Cookie Cutters, where he sat inside a toy car during  his cut, watching a cartoon.  His sister had great fun playing on the slide and with the games in the waiting area.
Later that day, we went shopping.  My daughter kept calling out to other kids in carts about the experience and encouraging all to go to Cookie Cutters.  A few days later, she informed me that her brother's hair was getting long again and we should go back.

After The Cut

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Ultrasound Scheduled: Will we name the baby Hey-You?

In only two and a half more weeks, we will be able to get our first glimpse of our newest family member and, as long as he/she is not too modest, determine whether he/she is a he or a she.

If she is a she, she will be named on the spot. This was the case with both of my other kids. Before I even met and married my husband, I had a favorite girl's name in mind. Luckily, he liked it too. Early in the pregnancy, we also determined a favorite boy name so we were well prepared to announce her name with her gender. Since our first was a girl, we saved that favorite boy name for our next pregnancy. Early on in that pregnancy, we also chose a new favorite girl name. Since our second was a boy, that girl name has been saved for this child, if she is a girl.

The girl name we have chosen does have some strikes against it. It is kind of a long name, which I think precludes weighing it down with a middle name, but my husband fervently disagrees and so she would have a middle name anyway. Also, and even worse, it is on the top ten most popular names list. I dislike trendiness in child-naming. However, these disadvantages are worth putting up with because, when combined with our last name, this would give the child the exact same full name as my favorite character from my favorite book. How cool is that?

On the other hand, there is a fifty-fifty chance this child is a boy. We have looked into boy names. My husband likes some of them, but I don't. In fact, I am concerned that I may have already named my second child with the only boy name I like. There simply aren't enough boy names to choose from out there. The few that exist are over-used. And while I don't like trendiness, I also wish to avoid outright weirdness and unpronounceability.

So if he is a boy, he will be called, "Hey-You," at least for now. I hope we come up with something better than that before we have to fill out the birth certificate.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Furnishing Grandma and Grandpa

A good portion of my home furnishings came from my parents. Various items have been gifts over the years and others have been hand-me-downs. Recently, my parents sold their house and all of their furniture with it. They are excited to use the return to get all new furniture for their next residence, but my four year-old daughter has been concerned.

"Mommy," she told me. "We should give Grandma and Grandpa back the furniture they gave us, because now they don't have any furniture at all."

I told her that was a very nice idea, but that I thought Grandma and Grandpa would want us to keep the furniture.

"Mommy," she responded. "We should give them back the furniture because that would be the nice thing to do."

I promised her I would talk to Grandma and Grandpa and see if they wanted the furniture back, and if they did, we would return it. (They didn't want it, but appreciated the thoughtfulness of their granddaughter.)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Health Reform on My Island

I live in a little island of reformers surrounded by the much more conservative sea of Utah. I work in public health and my husband works in health care. For myself, most of my colleagues, and my spouse, the need for health care reform is quite obvious. Right-wing terms like "socialized medicine" are always spoken very sarcastically, with the quotation marks audible. To me, there are quite a few very obvious symptoms of the need for reform in the American health care system:
  • If you become too sick or injured to work, you lose your health insurance coverage and can't get health care, so you become even sicker or die.
  • If you are born with a genetic illness and therefore depend on health care to help you lead a healthy, normal life, you are uninsurable and can't get health care.
  • If you can't afford preventive health care to keep you well, you get really sick and go to the emergency room, where you get much more expensive care that is passed on to everyone else in the form of skyrocketing health care costs.
Most of the people I work with also see these things as bad and would like reform. But, living in Utah, every now and then I am still exposed to the more mainstream local views.

For example, a loud guy on a cell phone was expressing his fears about health reform on the bus the other day. He can't afford health insurance. I would say that is evidence of the need for reform, but he saw that as no big deal because he just pays cash for his care. Lucky for him, his whole family is healthy and has not yet been run over by an SUV, so paying cash has not been a big deal. But he is scared to death that this health care reform thing will go through and something will change his blissful status quo. Even with all his noisy whining, I couldn't figure out what that dreaded something could be. I think he should be more worried about that SUV and hope that reform goes through before he actually needs to try to use the broken health care system.