two months today

Sweet pumpkinmuffin Scarlett is celebrating her two-month birthday today… Madli is downstairs in the kitchen making gooseberry pie in tender commemoration, and I, why, I will blog.

Scarlett at two months: a bundle of unbridled joy, taking in the surroundings, eyes wide open, and… smiling. Oh lord, when she smiles! When she smiles, when she smiles, when she smiles.

When the Phantom strikes, the lightning stands still“, the old jungle saying goes. But when Scarlett smiles, my whole world stands still. And then said world unfolds, revealing secret treasures and answers to questions mankind has been asking since dawn. I know every meaning of every moment and I can feel history and future merge. Yes, all that and more is in her smile. And she has dimples too!

It is no wonder I’m wearing out her soft puffy cheeks by kissing them a bazillion times every day…

She stole my heart two months ago – and I won’t ever want it back, because it’s right where it belongs now. Can you see it?

scarlett in safe hands

Good old grandpa, best in the whole wide world, is still going strong at the age of at least 86. Over the holidays he finally got to see a grand-grandchild of his for the very first time, and he held her in his huge strong hands like she was made of ancient Egyptian papyrus. I never felt better about handing over my daughter. It was a touching moment I shall store in my most secure vault of memories.

Some of the more related of you will obviously point out that the magnificent Maxime beat Scarlett to the title of first grand-grandchild by a year and a bit, but since she has yet to set foot on Scandinavian soil, most of us have still only seen her on pictures, where she plays in the sand on some faraway beach, or on videos, where she dances like a little twister. Scarlett is, however, waiting like crazy to meet her big cousin this summer!

the milk smurf

She is eating. A lot. All the time. Which, when you add it up, becomes many centimeters and kilograms. Our little milk smurf is expanding like space itself; her legs will soon stretch around the world!

Scarlett, tallest baby in the world? Well, not quite. I think the tailor made a little mistake… she is still pappa’s tiny sweetheart.

Actually, I don’t want her to grow anymore. She is so easy to handle right now, she fits everywhere, like in the palm of my hand. Yesterday I even mistook her for the TV remote, and kept pressing her nose to change channel…

tiny santa

Instead of the old frightening man with a huge belly and a grey beard, we had a tiny-tiny Santa this year. She charmed us all so much so that we completely forgot to ask where she had left her gigantic bag of Christmas presents…

Uncle Johan caught her, when she dropped down the chimney! Hou hou hou and happiness!

o daughter, where art thou?

Had a single week of father’s leave, was then forced to make an abrupt return to the rat race. I was dragged to UK on Sealed Air business last Sunday, got back Saturday morning. You better believe that week felt loooooooong…

Thus, no new pics of baby Scarlett, whom I miss so terribly I ache from spine to soul. Worse yet, she is still stuck in the muck in Tallinn, waiting for her first passport and permission to travel. I hope to see her incoming weekend. *Sigh*. She will have tripled in age since I last saw her tiny nose, toes, fingers and puffy cheeks.

Dad’s hurting, Scarlett, and far more than you can ever imagine. If I could hug you now, I would never let go.

chapter one of the first book

The calender said 29.11.2008, but I knew better than that. It was genesis, and we now live in the year zero. What was before genesis? I have no idea…

Life has a new center of gravity, around which everything revolves. I’m not metaphoric here; it feels as though the map of the universe is taking new shape. The planets are creaking, the stars are burning, can’t you hear it, can’t you see it?!

It is funny that something only 49 centimeters tall and 3.36 kilograms small can throw your whole world upside down, inside out, and every which way. Here she is, real as can be, clothes mix-matched and one glove missing, wonderfully illustrating the utter orbit of my mind.

The parents, us, pappa Andy and mamma Madli, we are so happy, so proud, so happy and proud to be this lucky. Our baby daughter is a treasure of impossible measure.

Frankly, I get annoyed by the futile attempts of the English language to convey the feeling you get when your firstborn wraps her tiny fist around your finger. There is not a word on the market that I will buy for that. My brain just comes apart at its seams.

Speaking of no words… the first time I held her in my arms, she suddenly opened both her blue eyes. She tried to focus despite the horrible brightness, and found me staring right back. Our eyes met in the middle.

You don’t have to die to go to heaven. I never felt so significant in my whole life.

the final countdown

We had a fancy weekend in Tallinn, again. This time Shishi, my favorite interior design and decoration company, turned 10. Shishi is Madli’s longtime employer – and part-time home, I don’t mind telling you. Her very best friends also happen to co-own it.
250 of Estonia’s greatest and most gorgeous – very gorgeous – turned up for the fabulous black tie event. You could hardly take a step without the paparazzi taking a picture of it. TV was there, too. Very absurd, but rather amusing.
Since I know a fair deal of the glitzy people already, I spent the evening mingling my ass off and drinking at least 124 glasses of Moët et Chandon. From now on, I do believe I shall refuse to go to any party that does not have an army of waiters swarming around, ready to fill up the flute at the very hint of low. What can I say? I like it easy.

Yeah, I had a bit of a hangover on Saturday. But I cured it with lots of vodka at a lovely birthday party that came later that day. And then we moved on to a fashion show. Nothing like being gently intoxicated while watching telephone-pole-thin über-models sway down the catwalk. “Are they elves?”, I may have thought to myself. Haha! Yeah, I’m a firm believer in the Estonian gene pool.

And that brings me to my own beib. She showed her fist to me when I threatened to put this picture on my blog. So here she is, balancing a glass of champagne on her belly…

Obviously, the dear day is coming soon. Tomorrow? Next week? We wish we knew, but we really can’t say. I’m just counting days and crossing fingers and tripping over my feet in what can be nothing else than nervousness bordering on breakdown.
There are side effects. For some reason unknown to reason, when I put food into the fridge, I check the best-before dates, and wonder, “when that yoghurt goes bad, I might be a dad…”

My heart pounds like a jackhammer to think that I am now on constant stand-by. The waiting is killing me. I have no control. I jump when the phone rings. But when the right call finally comes, I’ll drop everything I hold, and grab the first helicopter to Tallinn and baby daughter.

a rose by any other name would smell as sweet

Shakespeare betrayed himself with that line. If words were irrelevant to him, why did he treat them so well? Why did he make them sing?

What is in a name? Only everything. Once mentioned, only nothing. But it is the gateway to your personality, and when I will be calling it out, I want a very special princess to answer.

More than anything, words are sounds to me, associations next, and only then symbols and meanings. If they don’t play well, I leave them be. This particular ability – handicap, if you will – turns even the most menial of sentences into battles with Beethoven. With that in mind, try to imagine the challenge of choosing a name for your first, your daughter, your first daughter.

Madli, my love, has her feet firmly set on the ground. Mine point to Jupiter. We aim to meet in the middle, and there we hover in strange positions. “Did you press the anti-gravity button again!?” “No, honey. I swear. I just sort of, uh, leaned against it…”

We have a list of names here. As a disclaimer, it has to be admitted that some of these suggestions are more mine than hers. No matter how much I want to name our daughter Safari, it probably is not going to happen. None of these might. One of these may. But at least we have a list.

And the nominees are:

Aida
Astrid
Audrey
Bianca
Carmen
Chloe
Demi
Luna
Roxy
Sadie
Safari
Saffron
Sahara
Scarlett
Selma
Stella

Pray tell, what’s your favorite name in the world? I shall welcome suggestions like a door mat!