Tag Archives: Crying baby

A Crying Baby and a Few Pies

27 Oct

Late last month I boarded a flight to Portland for the first leg of my journey to see my daughter, Alex, in New York. I sat in my assigned seat, greeted my seatmate and waited for takeoff.  A few minutes later, a young couple with a crying infant headed for their seats – one row in front of and across the aisle from me. Moments later the baby’s cries became more frantic.  At that point, the mother handed the baby to the dad, and he sat there holding his screaming baby. The “mom” in me thought that by waving at the baby I could distract him for a moment, and maybe his cries would abate.  Instead, the baby’s Dad saw me waving and handed the baby over to me.

screaming baby

I was stunned!  The baby was screaming so immediately I tried bouncing him on my knees. Then I decided this situation called for serious measures and stood up and began rocking him from back and forth. The first flight attendant said that this was okay to do and that he’d let me know when we were ready for takeoff, so I continued to rock and talk quietly to the child.  In a matter of minutes, his cries became less frantic, and soon he stopped crying altogether. Then I noticed that the baby’s head was beginning to lean on my chest and before long he was sound asleep.  At that moment, the second flight attendant told me that I needed to sit down, so I handed the baby back to his parents. When I did that, the flight attendant looked at me in disbelief and said, “He’s not yours?”

No, he wasn’t mine, but I was happy to help because (let’s be honest) many of us have had that same experience. We’re stressed out for so many reasons (for example, packing and getting ready for a trip, rushing to the airport, etc) and of course, our baby picks up on that stress. Instead of being an annoyed passenger thinking “Oh no, a crying baby” I wanted to do something if I could and, fortunately, it worked out. The baby slept for the rest of the flight, Mom and Dad seemed more relaxed, and I got to soothe (and hold) a new baby.  Win-win-win!  What a way to start my trip!

high five

The reason for my visit to New York was so that I could help celebrate Alexandra’s, 27th birthday.  We did so by attending The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (cost: free!), The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (cost: free!), and the musical The Book of Mormon (SRO tix only $27!).  We also took long walks, dined around town, and simply spent time together. It was such a good visit and I know that I am a very lucky mama!



While there I baked three apple pies… one for my brother-in-law, Mike, one for our friend Tom’s birthday, and one for my daughter’s amazing friend, Royce.

me and roycePie for Tom Minor

Royce with me and his Apple Pie and an Apple Pie for Tom.

Sullivan Street Bakeryimagine

Enjoying scrumptious bread at Sullivan Street Bakery and visiting Strawberry Fields, the John Lennon memorial site.

Once back home, I baked another Apple Pie for one of our favorite singer/songwriters, the amazing Martin Sexton, who opened Jefferson Public Radio’s One World Performance Series. Then, a few days later, I baked yet another Apple Pie for a woman who donated to a charity that I help with. It was such fun to surprise her with a pie to thank her for her gift. Finally, a Bacon and Roasted Pepper quiche found its way to a dear friend who is going through chemo. It’s something nourishing that she can eat when she feels like eating and will also hold for a few days when she is not able to do so.

quiche for JoAnn

It’s been a long time since I’ve written and part of the reason for my delay was that there were so many stories in the news that have felt especially devastating. Some days I’ve found it hard to read the paper or listen to the radio because the stories break my heart. At times like this, I wish I could do something magical and change the world for the better. Until then, I will continue to give away pies… and maybe, every so often, I’ll rock a crying baby.

“We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.”  David Mamet

Day 139: Matt and Kristin

23 Aug

Less than a year ago, Matt and Kristin had their second child, Luke. One day I called and asked if I could bring over a pot of soup and some bread so that Kristin might not have to fix dinner. Kristin welcomed the suggestion and a short time later I was at her front door with a simple soup. Kristin opened the door holding Luke who was crying. I offered to hold him for a bit. And immediately I started bouncing him and cooing and soon he’d stopped his crying.

Kristin thought that I was a miracle worker – but I know that Luke probably just “knew” that something had changed and he was tuning in to figure out what it was. Maybe he could tell that my scent was different than the one he was used to smelling. Certainly my voice was different. And perhaps Kristin didn’t bounce the same way I did. Whatever it was, Luke noticed.

It was about 22 years ago that I had my own screaming baby. For almost three months my darling daughter cried every night – for hours. My friend Dana suggested that she might be lactose intolerant and that since I was nursing, I should eliminate dairy foods from my diet. I could not believe that my baby would have trouble eating dairy. And I held to that misguided belief for three months. And then, I decided I would limit my dairy intake – actually, by then I would have tried almost anything because I was exhausted. Guess what? My baby stopped crying within 48 hours. It was that simple. Damn if I wasn’t wrong about the “benefits of milk.”

About a month ago, Matt called to ask if I could babysit the boys for an evening (I’d offered to do so months before) and I agreed. But then I asked how heavy Luke was. I had just remembered that my broken rib would get in the way of picking up this baby and I had to say no – or at least – not now.

While I was out for my walk this morning I thought of Matt and Kristin and their beautiful boys and thought “I want to bring them a pie.” But I wanted it to be a “helpful” pie and so it turned out to be a spinach, sausage and pepper quiche.

Tonight I send my very best wishes to Matt and Kristin and the boys – may their days be long and full of love.

There is only one pretty child in the world, and every mother has it. ~Chinese Proverb