Since I am the beetqueen, I now declare my progeny to be the sweet potato king. How did this vegetable monarchy come to be you may wonder? Well, it’s simple. Several years ago I was looking for a screen name for Yahoo, or Hotmail or some such program. After realizing Happy Phantom (a favorite Tori Amos reference) was taken and I’d have to add numbers to the back of it if I wanted to use it at all, I glanced over at my book shelf to find something literary if my musical reference wasn’t going to work. See, I know myself and some random string of numbers just wasn’t going to work with my memory. As it is I have seven phone numbers memorized: my home and cell phone, my husband’s cell, my work number, my dad’s, my aunt’s and my grandmother’s. Three of those have been the same since I was 12 and one hasn’t changed in three years. Sadly, I just memorized my husband’s cell during my pregnancy, a full two and a half years after he got it. My shelf showed me the novel The Beet Queen by Louise Erdrich and when I typed it in, there were no other beetqueens out there. I’ve had this name now since either college or right after. It’s been so long that I’ve lost track. To be honest, I’m not even all that enamored of the novel. I mean, it’s perfectly fine, but not in my top 10 or even my top 20. And no, I don’t like beets. Or at least I don’t think I do. I haven’t had one since I was about 8, but I didn’t like it then, so why worry about it now? I have had several morons on line contact me trying to have cyber sex over the years, not realizing a beet is a type of vegetable, not an indication of what they think I might like to do to their genitalia. If it was that type of beat, I’d be more likely to beat them upside the head for being so icky and annoying. But as usual, I digress.
The whole purpose of this rambling, aside from the fact it’s been a weird posting week to due death, family time and the holiday, is that my little family has entered new territory. My baby is now six months old and eating real food. Well, as real as pureed vegetables can be considered. So, we have crossed into a land of stained bibs, clothing, carpets and who knows what else. A land where baby poop is apparently no longer just green or yellow, but takes on the characteristics of whatever they’ve eaten last. A land where the formula intake begins to dwindle and the let’s face it, the food smells a heck of a lot more like what I consider edible. A land where my son devours an entire jar of baby food in one sitting and like the remorseless eating machine he is, cries out for more. In short, a land where he becomes the sweet potato king. I realize his jar of baby food only had 2.5 ounces, but I think he would have licked it clean if his little tongue was that coordinated and we’d have let him. There was hardly any mess because he didn’t even bother to try to spit any of it out. He gulped it all down, happy to have each bite.
We’ve reached a major baby milestone. It’s hard to believe that my son, who is still so much like a baby in some ways is so much like a big boy in others. I know it’s cliché, but it seems like only yesterday I was gazing at him from across the delivery room as they wiped him clean and checked his responses. Now he’s sitting up for minutes on his own, gulping down foods not all that far off from what I eat and rolling over so much I have to watch him every second. I know everyone in my life keeps telling me this, but I feel like every time I blink he grows. Before I know it he really will be in college. For now though, he’s just my little junior monarch of vegetables.