Sunday, January 17, 2010

10 Things

In honor of her ten week birthday, I've compiled a David Letterman-esque Top Ten list - with less humor and no real value to the order - of the things I love about Amari. I can't put value judgments on my adoration for her, so I guess this is more of a List of Ten. Nonetheless, here is my ever-growing, often changing:

Ten Things I Love About Amari

10. Starting my days with her. This is a great example of why this list has no particular order. When she allows me six plus hours of sleep, this would undoubtedly be my number one love. Right now, however, with a little under five hours of sleep, it's arbitrarily number ten. Either way, even when I look at the clock and grumble, "What the bleep? Can't you see it's freakin' dark out?" my annoyance is one hundred percent soluble in the half-asleep smile she gives me when I pick her up. She often drifts back to sleep for a while once we're downstairs, but never for long.

9. The way she stares at me. Whether I'm feeding her, calming her down, or playing with her, her eyes are hypnotic. I often wish I'd known her years ago when winning staring contests was a much bigger deal. If either one of my siblings challenges me to a rematch today, I'll be ready.

8. Her infinite facial expressions. Carrie isn't thrilled with the idea of me posting photos of Amari on the Internet, which is why these posts are so wordy - a thousand for each picture I'm not allowed to post. In fact, the topic of posting photos has been one of our only parental disagreements so far. The good news is I got permission to use her face in the "Amari B Fishman vs Amare Stoudemire" entry. The bad news is I abused (or extrapolated) that permission in that same entry and subsequent entries, which basically re-fertilized our disagreement. The good news is I've found a way around permission and potential "exploitation." Please know that no babies were harmed in the making of these photos. Here are artistic recreations of the facial expressions I love so dearly:

7. When she gets the stretchies. Too cute. There must be a genetic code for both doing this and for how great it feels. I notice that she kind of stretches like I do - unabashed, indiscriminately, irregardless of location - but much more quietly.

6. Her dexterous little hands - kind, gentle, and recently more expressive. Aren't kids great?

5. The noises. New ones every day. After she eats in the morning, we hang out by the bay window and she looks intently as I say words, make noises, and ask questions. I feel as though she is studies my lips carefully to see what I'm doing. I recently read that it's important to leave pauses in my narratives and conversations with her to give her a chance to respond. I do this now, asking "What do you think?" or saying, "Amari's turn," and I've been thrilled when she fills the silence with her constantly growing personal coobabble dialect. Awesome.

4. Appliance Science: She has taught us the more important uses of hairdryers, vacuums, blenders, and radios. All of these are effective white noise machines that will calm a fussy baby and make commonly challenging events such as showers and diaper changes effortless. If a meltdown begins in the car, we quickly find a radio signal with no station and turn the volume up to match her cries. She's generally calm within seconds.

3. Foot wear: We both love the same ridiculous socks. Yup that's my foot and that's her flipper. Giant baby feet and future Michael Phelps competitor.

2. Lakers Fanaticism: She wasn't initially thrilled with the Ron Artest acquisition because she was a big believer that Trevor Ariza was the reason the Lakers managed to beat the Rockets on their way to the championship last summer. She couldn't really voice her opinion because she wasn't born yet, but she let her mom know with a couple of kicks and some heartburn. Now she has witnessed three Kobe buzzer beaters already this year. Nice start to her career as a fan.

1. Liftetime Giants Fan: That's right - she has been a fan for over seventy days now. Not once has her allegiance wavered. Sure - this could have been lumped with number two, but knowing this will be the year the Giants finally bring the World Series back to the Bay, I feel it merits not only its own spot but pole position. That's right, this is what I love most about Amari.

Go Giants!

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