Wednesday, March 31, 2010

the sound of health

Kiddo was sick for about two weeks. This started just before my mom visited, and kept going, and going, and going. She missed two library outings, and had a cough for a long time, and was just generally tired.

About three days ago I heard her laugh more than she has in a long time. And she continued to laugh at many things all throughout the day. I realized I hadn't heard her laugh so much since she got sick. And then I realized she was all better.

She continues to laugh at many things many times throughout the day. I'm glad she's not sick anymore.

staying fresh

Kiddo found this bottle amongst a bunch of baby stuff her dad brought home from the storage unit the night before. She immediately popped off the top and started "applying her deodorant," just like she'd seen daddy do a few days before. When asked what she was doing, she replied "scratching your arm." Oh she cracks me up. I was so excited that her dad was working from home, so he could see it for himself.

security blanket

Kiddo never chose a blanket or toy that she needed for sleeping or comfort. Occasionally she would latch onto something for a day or two, but then that would fall out of vogue. For a while she was pretty attached to a stuffed sheep her great-grandma B gave her, but then for a while every time we'd come get her up we'd see that Agnes (the sheep) had been kicked out of bed. So, who knows. I think part of this is because when she was very young she started holding the collar of her onesie underneath her clothes, and that was her security item.

Given her new potty-trained status, Kiddo no longer wears onesies.

This has coincided with a new attachment to her jammies and onesies. If she finds a set that she is not wearing, she picks it up with joy, finds the collar, and settles in for a good thumb suck. She likes to have a set to hold when she takes her nap. It is not uncommon to return to her room at the end of the nap, and find that everything in the crib has been thrown out except the jammies and onesies. And two sets of jammies is better than one.

(And this picture is fabulous because she has a real smile on, not her smile for the camera. She's beautiful.)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

heard in the kitchen

My husband and I have different rules for Kiddo sitting at the table. He insists that she sits in her chair. I just want her to stay within her chair, whether standing or sitting. For some reason we've decided that she can have different rules depending on who's around. She understands that, and is reasonably compliant. (As compliant as she is to any other rule for sure.)

This morning she was "helping cook" in the kitchen with her dad while I took a shower. I came back into the kitchen, and before long she stood up on her chair. She turned to look at her dad, and stated emphatically, "Daddy will say 'sit down.'" As soon as he did, she sat back down.

I think I laughed for two or three minutes straight.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Since we've moved, Kiddo has found a lot of things that make her nervous. The loud german shepherd two doors down, the sounds of our upstairs neighbors, and the eight-month old that likes to wander to her with his mom's help are just a few. But she's resilient, and is learning to help herself through these situations. She does this by repeating the phrases that we teach her. (This repeating we did not teach her, it's just her thing.)

If she hears the dog bark, she says to herself, "It's just the dog." If she hears noises from upstairs she says "It's just the people upstairs." And we discovered her unease with the baby by her comment, as he approached, of "It's just a baby." These comments may or may not be sufficient to calm her fears, often she would like to be held at the same time.

Recently her self-talk has taken an additional element, of correcting herself. She expresses dislike with a scream. As her parents, we don't agree with this, and have told her so. Now, if she screams, you can be sure that it will be cut short by her, followed by her quiet voice saying "shhh. Don't scream [kiddo]." If she's particularly upset, she'll repeat the cut-off scream with more shh-ing until she's worked out her frustration. What a little character.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

the secret name

People ask me often if we have a name picked out for our upcoming little girl. I have no ability to lie to a direct question, so I answer truthfully, yes. Then comes the awkward silence when they realize that I will not be telling the name, but that I have one...

Yesterday I went walking with a new friend in the area. The question invariably came up. I told her yes, but unless she could get Kiddo to tell her the name then she'd just have to be surprised in a month like everyone else. So she asked Kiddo, who wouldn't reply. Then I asked Kiddo, and she replied with some gibberish.

This morning Kiddo announced (as she does almost daily) "There's a baby in mama's tummy." I asked her what the baby's name was. She answered correctly with no hesitation. Apparently she's in on the secret too.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

5:30 wake up call

I woke up around 5:30 this morning and thought, "I think this is the best sleep I've had in weeks." I had fallen asleep quickly, and only got up once. I was about to roll over and get my last two hours or so when I heard a little voice from the next room.

"Mama!" "Mama!" with some unintelligible statement of problem. I went in to investigate. She told me she was all wet (I think) so of course we had to deal with that. She wasn't all wet, her diaper was wet, she went to the bathroom, then I told her it was too early to be up, and we went back to her bed.

I spent the next hour and a half half sleeping on her floor, while she dozed on and off in her crib. When I was finally convinced that a) she was truly asleep (a hard call to make in the dark without my glasses), and b) I could not lie on the floor a moment longer, I slowly, quietly stood up. She stood up too. "Have to go potty?" she announced. And thus our day started for real.

5:30 is way earlier than I wanted to get up. And any positive effects of my "good" night's rest did not happen. Maybe tonight.

Monday, March 22, 2010

the street where we live

This is my home. We live on the first floor. Our upstairs neighbors are loud, but nice. And it makes me less concerned about the upcoming increase in baby crying.
This is a close up of me and Kiddo in front of the house, enjoying the warm weather we had last week, that is currently being washed away by the significant rain we're receiving. Oh well, at least it's not snow like my parents...

when grammy comes home

Grammy has come and (sadly) gone. It was a fabulous to have help with Kiddo as I move into the "I feel super large" phase of my pregnancy. (I'll post a swell picture when my mom sends it to me.) Plus, we did things that have been on my to-do list for years (no exaggeration).

We cleaned and preserved my wedding gown. Okay, my mom did it, with some help from Kiddo.

We finally decorated the wreath I bought on sale five years ago. Okay, I helped my mom pick out flowers, and she decorated it.
She also watched Kiddo while my husband and I went to the temple together for the first time in too long. She helped with dinner and dishes. She helped me clean out my pantry, and wiped down my smelly fridge (she assures me the smell was slight, but to me it smelled huge). She helped me sort baby clothes, both really teeny ones to use in a month, and those that have just been outgrown, and won't be needed again for two years. She went to nursery with Kiddo and helped our neophyte nursery leaders (in the church and in nursery) understand how it works better. She sat in the bathroom with Kiddo during her marathons potty-sits.

And, Grammy reports on the following potty training experience. (And with this, we should be done with potty training stories, because we have passed the last waking hurdle, church without a pull-up. And I declare her trained while waking.) During nursery, she did not announce it was time to use the potty, but instead pulled her undies and tights down to her ankles. Grammy, in her haste to bring her where she needed to be, helped her waddle to the bathroom just like that. Oops! The hallway was full of people. But they made it to the toilet in time. Yay Kiddo!

The weather was beautiful, the only blemish to the visit was that Kiddo didn't feel very well, so stayed more attached to me than usual. But she still loves Grammy. And they did make cupcakes.

Come back soon. Then I'll have two babies to love.

seen around the house

For my most recent graduation, my mother-in-law bought me a Wii Fit. Then I got pregnant, and didn't have a home for a while, so it took some time to see the light of day. Now that it has, and Kiddo gets it, she loves it. We exercise with it most days. She likes all the exercises, and we do most of them each day, but is especially into "the mamas and the daddas" which means the yoga poses. (You may call it yoga, but she insists on her term.)

She often does her yoga poses for us. This is her first attempt at the tree pose. (Her dad showed it to her while she was on the chair. I would have waited until she was on the floor, and oh, can't do it right now.) While she and I do Wii Fit, she plays MarioKart with her dad. She loves to drive the princess, and the dragon.

And in her constant attempts to help with all household chores, here she is "doing the dishes" while I cook dinner. She loves the bubbles, and being like mom. "We are doing the dishes," she announced with joy and pride in her accomplishments. I managed to keep her out of the already clean dishes, so I felt that it was an accomplishment too.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

S is for the Sping Peep-ah

Someone gave us the Frog Alphabet Book. It never made the read list until about a month ago. Now we read it at least once a day, usually three or four times. It is the book of choice for time on the toilet. Kiddo can recite at least 2/3 of the book.

It is not short. It has taught me about efts, and newts, and caecilians, and where the biggest frog in the world lives (Cameroon, Africa), and how big the smallest frog is. It is chock full of information, all of which Kiddo now knows, because she has memorized the whole thing. And insists on "reading" to us, as well as being read to.

I have got to find her some more non-fiction, to add to her knowledge base.

an open letter to my mom

Dear Mom,

I didn't get the house clean, but my husband did a pretty good job of disguising that while I was picking you up from the airport. I had super good intentions, and woke up Monday sure that it would happen. Then I figured out why Kiddo had slept so poorly the night before. She was sick. So instead of cleaning, I sat with a mellow child, who wasn't so sick that she was miserable, but was sick enough to need extra love, and extra attention. Tuesday was about the same.

One of these visits the house will be clean before you come. You'll be so surprised. Until then, know I really appreciate you being here, and helping me out before the next baby comes. At least the apartment will be clean before you leave...

love, me

Saturday, March 13, 2010

thoughts on a clean house

Most days I think "we (meaning my child and I) did a pretty good job of picking up after ourselves today." Then I leave her and her dad rocking to sleep, come out to the rest of the house and am stunned by the amount of residual toys, books, clothes, etc. that are every where. Some nights I pick them up. Some nights I don't... Hmmm, perhaps that's part of the problem.

I've never had as clean of a house as my mom. Her house is the one I set my standards by. As long as I've been married I've never reached this standard. I have provided myself with all sorts of excuses along the way, but maybe it's time to realize that it may never happen. Perhaps I need to define a cleanliness level for myself, and judge myself by that standard.

But she's coming to visit in a few days. I've had a number of friends over the years who tell me that it's stressful to have their parents visit because they have to clean before they arrive. I always thought, wait, isn't that why your mom comes? To help you clean and otherwise get your life in order? (That being said, when my dad comes to visit, I do often make an effort to declutter a bit, and then accept that he will help me in that process when he shows up. He has a much lower clutter tolerance than me.) But for the first time ever, I've felt the need to clean before she shows up. Which is ironic, because she really is coming specifically to help me in my pregnant state. We'll see if I act on any of my intentions, or if they stay vague impulses.

Kiddo has ideas about what to do while she's here. "When Grammy comes home, we will have birthday cake." and "When Grammy comes home, we will color eggs." It took me a while to remind Kiddo that Grammy is not coming today, or tomorrow, but soon. Hopefully Grammy's ready for the energy of my little one (cause I'm not really right now.)

Friday, March 12, 2010

the proper way to slide

"with your bobbin."

Now that we spend so much time in the bathroom, Kiddo has picked up on some new words, like bottom. Except she pronounces it funny. So each time we go to the park, she informs me that she'd like to "Go down the slide. With your bobbin."

This makes me smile every time (and is so hard not to use in replies to her), but tonight was even better. Instead of 'horsey rides' around this house we have 'camel rides' (thanks to Grandma and Aunt M). Given my pregnant state, I won't give her a camel ride. But she can still convince Daddy to, even when he's really sick (like right now). The joy for her is not the ride itself, but getting herself up on the "camel." After a few rides, my husband was getting pretty tired of it all, and put his back at an angle so she couldn't climb up.

"Daddy will put your bobbin down," Kiddo announced with confidence, as she pushed down, trying to flatten his back. We both laughed and laughed as each time she remounted the camel she first checked for his "bobbin to be down."

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

help! I'm being held hostage in the bathroom

Now that Kiddo is no longer worried about sitting on the toilet, and in fact (mostly) toilet trained, we spend a lot of time in the bathroom. She tells me she needs to go, and off we go. And then we stay, and stay, and stay. I ask her frequently if she's finished, and she doesn't respond, or else replies "and stay on the potty?"

I can't insist she leave, what if she still needs to go? I really don't want accidents. And leaving her by herself has awkward consequences, like playing in the large toilet, and other things I don't want to deal with, or talk about.

So I sit with her, and wait, and wait, and wait, and eventually convince myself we can leave the tiny, tiny room. Is it because it's the only place she can be sure I'll be completely focused on her? Or is that just my motherhood self-doubt speaking?

Monday, March 8, 2010

movie quotes

Kiddo's response to any number of yes or no questions these days is "No, I wish I did." I'm sure it's a Little Bear quote, I just can't place it. And it's a terribly frustrating answer. Oft times I too wish she would go use the potty, or be thirsty, or would eat whatever I was trying to serve her at that particular meal, or comply with my seemingly benign request, like sit down to put her socks on. I am replying more than I mean to with "I wish you did too."

in the diaper bag

Yesterday at church a very nice man gave Kiddo a rather large bag of candy. We were very grateful for his generosity, but had plans to ration it out slowly.

This morning (before breakfast) Kiddo found the bag in her diaper bag, brought it to me, and announced "let's have a snack on the couch."

Sunday, March 7, 2010

how quickly we forget

I looked through pictures of my "vacation" to my parents house last May. There were cute pictures of Kiddo in the pool, eating ice cream, wearing hats, etc. As I reflected on the pictures I thought, why were we down there anyway?

Oh yeah, I was writing my dissertation. I barely saw the girl. All I did was write, write, write (actually edit, edit, edit) all day long, all week long. I think I would have preferred forgetting.

heard from the men's room

Before Sacrament Meeting today, I sent Kiddo off to use the bathroom with my husband supervising. We have a foldable toilet reducer that means she can (mostly) sit on a large public toilet without falling in. She used the toilet, but somehow got her leggings wet, so my husband was dealing with cleaning up from that when he heard a little voice: "look through the oval."

Yes, she'd lifted the foldable seat off the toilet seat and had put it over her head. Oh it's grand to have a two year old.

Friday, March 5, 2010

have done list

I read in a magazine somewhere that instead of writing a "to do" list at the beginning of each day, the author wrote a "have done" list at the end of the day, allowing her (?) to better appreciate what she had actually accomplished. This spoke to me, as I often (okay, always) fail to complete everything on my to-do list, but when I am honest in my appraisal of the day, I realize I have actually done quite a bit.

So last week, I still didn't get a pediatrician for my girl here and my girl on the way, I didn't finish my church book for Kiddo, and I still haven't cleaned off the computer desk, or sorted through those boxes still sitting in the "box room." But, I got the laundry done, and on Thursday, I made hummus. I love hummus, I've wanted some for a long time, but had never made it before. That was my husband's job. (I don't like store bought hummus. It tastes weird.) But why? Why couldn't I do it myself? Kiddo loves to help in the kitchen, and I wanted hummus. So, I didn't do much that day, but we did make hummus. I went to bed feeling like I'd accomplished something too.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

better safe...

We visited the midwife yesterday. One of my measurements was small, she got nervous, and sent us in for another ultrasound today. After waiting a really long time (the office was running 90 minutes late), we saw pictures of the new baby.

She is not small. Nothing is wrong with her. She is in fact in the 60th percentile, making her slightly big for her "age." Her cerebellum is big too; the ultrasound technician assured us this indicates that she'll be smart. And he showed us that it was a girl. I guess I should stop worrying about a surprise in the delivery room.

I'm glad my baby is okay. We meet in about 8 weeks. I'll keep you posted.

(A big shout-out to a friend who watched my kid for the four hours we were gone. That would be watching a mostly toilet trained toddler, in other words, enough so that Kiddo let her know when she had to use the toilet, but not so much that she didn't need adult supervision, especially on the adult sized toilet. My friend is a good woman.)