Friday, December 21, 2007

A Day in the Life

While we spend most of our weekends taking in Bavarian sights, the weekdays find Miles and me snuggled down on the Munich homefront. Actually, we keep ourselves quite busy, with each day just a bit different and a bit the same. I thought I would share just such a day with our readers.

5:30 a.m.

These are my boys just after Miles' first diaper change of the morning. The slim piece of real estate on the other side of Miles is my typical bed space.

7:30 a.m.

Thankfully, I wasn't awake for a 6:30 a.m. post. You might notice I actually had the alarm set for 7:40 a.m. this particular morning. We had an important appointment that could not be missed.

8:30 a.m.

Somewhat to our surprise, Miles has gradually emerged as a good eater, eagerly consuming three meals a day of (relatively) solid food. He enjoys feeding himself most when we spread a smorgasbord out in front of him. He is reasonably adventurous, enjoying duck, potatoes with paprika, Bavarian wurst and goulash. Of course, he still enjoys plenty of meals from his mama as he did this morning.

9:30 a.m.

After hopping on the U-Bahn and getting quite lost, we arrived just in time for Miles' pediatrician appointment -- thankfully. (After all, this is Germany, where lateness is regarded with only slightly less disapproval than uncleanliness.) Here the patients patiently wait in the waiting room for our name to be called over a loudspeaker and assigned to a room.

10:30 a.m.

Once we are in our examination room, Miles knows who is coming and he is not happy about it. I, however, am always ready for some good entertainment during our visit. The doctor is absolutely hilarious and revels in the fact that Miles feels some sort of magnetic repulsion towards him. Today, Miles has a good reason to be upset. He is here to receive his Synagis vaccine. He receives this vaccine once a month during cold and flu season, as he is at high risk of complications from a serious cold due to his prematurity. Thankfully, we will be on our home turf for the next injection. In Seattle, our pediatrician and our insurance carrier seamlessly arrange for the medication and ultimately the payment. Here in Munich, I pick up a prescription at the doctor's office and have it filled within a couple of hours at a pharmacy. We knew that it was an expensive and special injection, but we were back on our heels when we had to shell out the first $3,000 in November for the medication, with hopes of reimbursement dependent on processing the multilingual paperwork through our insurance carrier. Yes, that's European health care with American insurance -- what a combo! (We would have preferred it the other way around.)

11:30 a.m.

After the trauma of the pediatrician's appointment, the Muffin promptly fell asleep on the way home as we waited for our U-Bahn train. Oh, how we will miss the convenient and clean public transportation that Germany has provided to us!

12:30 p.m.

The baby is still sleeping as I make my way through the Christmas market in Marienplatz, which is our U-Bahn stop and just minutes away from our apartment.

1:30 p.m.

Finally, after a rare 2 1/2 hour nap, Miles wakes up in Müller, our local department store. While I wait in line for the Kasse, Miles fondles his new bath toys.

2:30 p.m.

Happy baby! Lunch and nap behind us, it's playtime! While our apartment is small, we will miss its compact convenience and the ease of watching a mobile baby in it.

3:30 p.m.

Another hour passes and Miles, like mommy, likes to rearrange and organize. Here's Miles tidying up daddy's closet shelves. Won't he be pleased!

4:30 p.m.

It's time for an attempt at Nap Two of the day. Most days will find me pacing around with the Muffin wrapped against me in the Moby Wrap (the best $40 I have ever spent). Thankfully, I am usually successful in getting him to sleep on me.

5:30 p.m.

Still sleeping. . . .

6:30 p.m.

Still sleeping. . . .

7:30 p.m.

In the last hour Miles has had dinner, nursed and played in the bathtub with his new bathtoys. The highlight for Miles was most surely when Madina arrived to babysit. We adore our 27-year-old babysitter from New York City, who now lives in Munich with her German fiancé. However, nobody loves Madina more than Miles (well except maybe Niko, her betrothed). When she shows up, his little world stops and he smiles and coos for her to no end. She will be terribly missed when we leave. . . .

8:30 p.m.

With Madina safely watching Miles, Dean and I get a real date! We spend it at Dallmayr, a gourmet food store whose attached restaurant has earned a well-deserved star from the Michelin guide. This was the second of seven courses: fried goose liver with pear ravioli and hazel nut foam. Munich has no shortage of nice restaurants, but this may have been the best one we've tried during our stay.

9:30 p.m.

This must have been the happy course!

10:30 p.m.

Two and a half hours later, we indulge in our last course of gingerbread souffle and red wine ice cream. It was a lovely evening!

11:30 p.m.

Madina has completed her handoff. A half-asleep Miles nestles into the Baby Bjorn, Daddy's baby carrier of choice. Soon the boys are both sleeping and mommy takes the opportunity to....

12:30 a.m.

SKYPE her girlfriends!

There you have it - a day in the life.


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