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October 5th, 2008

minor updates on the infant

Cord fell off. We ran out of disposable diapers in her size, so we were compelled to use cloth -- no obvious problems there. She continues to poop bright orange, which as near as I can tell is (a) not worrisome but (b) no one knows why it is bright orange.

We called Jordan's Furniture and they have Dutailier rockers and ottomans in their warehouses so a new one should be available for us to put upstairs, thus allowing me to get up and sit in the rocker with A. during cluster feeds in the middle of the night without going all the way downstairs -- and coming all the way back up. I know this sounds foolish, and I don't care. After some concerns about where it would go, R. is in favor of this idea as well, figuring that if/when we move/renovate, we'll have plenty of space for the rockers and they make teh awesome TV watching chairs.

We had visitors today: J.-who-watches-T. came by with her whole family. They picked up some of the wood from trees R. had cut down, and some of them held A. They brought a really extremely cute sweater for A. from Land's End. L. came by with her kids, who had reasonable amounts of fun playing with the sea of plastic toys which is our living room. L. also brought disposable diapers; thank you L.!

B.-who-watches-T. came by around dinner time so we could actually have dinner. That was very nice.

T. continues to treat A. extremely well. He checks in on her when he's in the house and has taken to saying, "That's baby", altho the pronunciation is a little idiosyncratic.

The left boob is fully recovered but now, the right boob is getting somewhat engorged. So far, both T. and A. have been able to latch, so I have not yet resorted to ice packs/pump/etc.

I think last night was growth spurt #1 -- lots and lots and lots of cluster feeds. Eventually, R. swaddled her and I nursed her to sleep lying next to her (which is still No Fun For Me At All -- I don't get all these people who said they learned side-lying after having a c-section). That got me 4 hours, and then we stayed in bed all morning napping; I got up around 1 p.m.

ETA: Don't think I mentioned the staples were removed on Friday and I'm going in on Monday to have a little look-see and make sure everything continues well.
I don't even know what number this is in the series any more.

Reviews on Amazon hyped this as taking a darker turn compared to earlier entries and there was much teasing of people-gonna-die. In the event, the people who die are dead for several minutes before they are even identified in the text -- this was definitely dragged on to Make An Impact. And you would think, given the hormonal WTF of post-pregnancy (I _cried_ watching _March of the Penguins_ shortly after T. was born; earlier just today, I had to fight back tears over a freaking Brad Paisley video) that I would be sensitive to whatever it was Davidson was trying to accomplish here.

And yet, I apparently am not -- I'm just calloused, insensitive, jaded, blah, blah, bleeping, blah. Oh, well.

In this outing, the Fiends really come into their own, as they kill other people and die themselves. Between Betsy and Laura's blood, they've woken up and gotten all apocalyptic, cranky, and anti-Betsy. It's not terribly compelling, really, but it's a plot to string us along and I'm okay with that. BabyJon doesn't make one single on camera appearance in the entire book (that I noticed, anyway). Mark is hospitalized and carted off-stage quite early in the proceedings. Mom makes no appearance. Sinclair is almost a cipher -- which is amazing, given how cartoonish he is normally. In a lot of ways, after the Fiends, this story is about Nick and Betsy. And really, this is the story of Betsy's fuckups coming home to roost. Nick is spending the whole time incredibly pissed off and hostile at her because of what she did to him as a newly made vampire (queen) several books back. The Fiends coming to life reflect "errors" in judgment in more or less ignoring what's going on with the Fiends, not treating them with respect, and healing them enough to become a hazard but not enough to become allies. The Ant haunting her reflects the misguided wish for a baby that, in combination with the cursed ring, led to the deaths of her father and stepmother. Etc.

The epilogue, in which she asks her grandfather how he lived with killing people and so forth (in WW2). His summary is kinda telling: do what you have to do and then don't think about it any more. Is this how Betsy has been living her life? More or less (altho there have been regrets all along). Do we really think Betsy will continue down this path? Hard to say. If Davidson is sincere in wanting these books to make sense other than as a string of hilariously funny Buffyverse jokes, I think Betsy's going to have to do a bit more thinking and planning and bit ever so slightly more diligent.

OTOH, maybe Davidson will just keep parceling out the Extra Special Vamp Queen Powers, 1 per book.

_Hot Stuff_, Carly Phillips

Yet another weird subgenre for romance novels: in which the guys are pro-ball players (football usually, but not always) and the women work for sports leagues, agencies or similar. The women are hot. The men are about to retire due to age and/or injury. Everyone is sick of the shallow party scene. SEP's Chicago Stars books are another example of this phenomenon.

Phillips' version is a little different. Three sisters, adopted by a bachelor uncle when they are orphaned (parents die in plane crash), grow up to work for/with him in an agency. They are used to hanging out with the pro-ball players and sometimes even date them, usually in a disappointing sort of way. So we know we're in for at least a trilogy. _Hot Stuff_ is entry one, about Annabelle, the oldest sister who had to be Perfect and Keep Everyone In Line so that bachelor uncle would not give them up for adoption which would inevitably involve separation.

No pressure.

She's helping out a retired player who is opening a lodge and summer camp operation. He is dyslexic and wants to Help Out Challenged Young 'Uns. His parents were not sympathetic to the learning problems and do not care at all about his Accomplishments (like, a couple of times to the SuperBowl). Someone is sabotaging the lodge; she's doing PR damage control. They're trying to put a stop to the sabotage, so there's a bit of a mystery.

It's not bad, but it's no SEP. A lot of the conversations are a little clunky -- these people are awfully articulate and have amazing insight into their own psyche and the psyches of those around them. It's more than a little bit too pat.

That said, a pleasant enough read. If it sounds like the kind of thing you might like, it would probably be quite painless. I got it through a swap site and may pick up the sequels.