Monthly Archives: February 2013

The Music Class.

I was surprised and tickled to find out that William’s music class, Music Together, was being held this week.  His class is held in our city’s civic center, so I fully expected it to be postponed since President’s Day is a holiday observed by the government and its branches.  Apparently, though, one lady in the entire building came by to unlock the doors for the class.

The class starts at 4:30pm on Mondays, so I normally get there around 5:00pm and am able to observe the last 15-20 minutes of the class. So the fact that he had class on a holiday meant that I got to take him, and participate with him in the class from the beginning.  I was even happier to be able to sit right next to the teacher.  William apparently liked that, too, because he didn’t roam at all (like he normally does).  Instead, he chose to either sit on my lap, or sit in front of me on the floor.  He watched the teacher intently and danced to the music.

There was a new student this week that I’ve not seen before.   A little boy with shaggy hair.  He was probably closer to 2, given how nimble he was on his feet.  He was roughly William’s size, although a little slimmer in the face.  He was wearing jeans and a blue plaid shirt.  Both his mom and dad were there, they had arrived about 10 minutes late.

The little boy was disruptive, running through the middle of the circle, out to the other side.  He was pulling at the plastic containers that held the various instruments and grabbing at people’s bags.  When his parents corrected him, he yelled in anger. When the instruments were made available to the kids, he would grab them from the others and scream and throw a tantrum if told to give the item back or if it were taken from him to be put away at the end of each song.

I felt bad for his parents…  was he a handful because that’s who he is?  Perhaps it’s just his age?  Maybe he didn’t get a nap?  I don’t know.  Everyone mostly tried to ignore him and his antics, including me.  I was really trying to enjoy the class.

And then, he decided that he wanted the shaker that William had, not even caring that there were a dozen other shakers just like it on the floor in front of William.  I was 3-4 feet behind them, not close enough to intervene quickly and I watched in horror as the kid ran up behind William and grabbed his hair. Twice.

William is too young to defend himself, and so I reached to shield William’s head, at the same time as the kid’s mom yelled her son’s name… but we were both too late. I rubbed William’s head and waited to see William’s reaction.  William simply turned and looked at him.  The kid grabbed the shaker William was holding and ran away.  William furrowed his brow, looked at his empty hand, looked at the kid and then… chose another instrument.

I was relieved but less relaxed. As the class continued, the kid became obsessed with whatever William was doing.  Maybe because William was about his size?  When it was instrument freestyle time, the teacher was even “dancing” with a hand protectively over William’s head, because that kid was circling William with a lollipop drum.  When the song ended, his parents took the instrument he was holding and put it back in the box.  The child spotted that William still had his shaker, and so he grabbed it from him. Since all the other instruments had been put away, William started to get upset.  I took the shaker back from the child and gave it back to William, just as his mom reprimanded him.  At this point, I was pretty stressed and just wanted to tell his parents to, “Please!  Hold onto your kid already!”

It finally came time for the ending song.  The teacher got her book and the kid ran up to her and grabbed her book.  She gently tried to pry it out of his hands, he started screaming.  She smiled and  “sang” to him, while looking at his parents for help, “I need my book. The song is new.  I don’t have it memorized yet…”  The parents rocked back and forth next to each other, smiling, from across the room.  So the teacher was on her own, with an unruly child who was verging on a tantrum, and a book that was scrunched up in his hands as they battled for possession.  I wondered how she was going to handle the situation.

She continued to smile, as she gently enfolded the little boy in a hug.  She hugged him tight and close as she sang, and the book emerged in her hand, victorious.  The little boy snuggled for a second, and then wiggled free and ran back to his parents.

Of course.  Love.  Gentleness.  A hug.  The teacher is a beautiful soul.  She just reminded me, through her actions, that kindness and love is sometimes the best recourse against frustration and tantrums.

It’s a good lesson, but I will also say, that kid better not pull my kid’s hair again.

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Filed under I did something Special, I'm Never too Old to Learn, Our Kid is Cute

Never Gonna Get It.

Once upon a time, the cats had the rule of the land.  They claimed corners and stairways, hallways and garages.  In fact, in 2008, Snug had his very own corner in the house.  See Exhibit A.  Sadly, he lost that corner to my file cabinet, but never completely gave up hope that it would come back… see Exhibit B.

Alas, I think it’s safe to say, Snug’s corner is no more.

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Don’t worry.  Snug has found another corner, clear on the other side of the house, guarded by the obstacles of a gate, a table, a chair… and I’ll bet he even wishes he could wear ear plugs.

 

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Filed under Kid Substitutes, Our Kid is Cute

FlashBack.

A long, long time ago we did these “Gene Machine” morphings of what the computer thought our progeny would look like.

I am thankful that William looks nothing like them.

That is all.

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Filed under Best Husband, Our Kid is Cute

Gym Hater.

Just until April, that’s what I tell myself every year around this time.   Swimming should be all nubile beauty, sleek water and natural light.  During the winter months, though, it’s filled with dirty water, hideous florescent lights and things the eye shouldn’t behold.  It’s when my patience with ugly nudity and rude people starts to wear thin on my mermaid mentality, because at this point I’ve been swimming at the gym for about 3.5 months.

Seriously, I don’t change outside of my shower or bathroom stall and I certainly don’t bend over in all my glorious nudity when the only thing protecting me from the outside world is a bend in the wall.  I don’t hang my shower bag over other people’s items.  And I most certainly don’t stick my feminine hygiene products on the wall of the shower.  It’s disgusting.  When swimming my laps, if I’m sharing a lane, I make sure that I stay on my side, even though it takes a little extra attention and I can’t relax like I usually do… I expect the same courtesy in return.

Our local gym’s pool has been closed off and on during this period, making it difficult to be reliable.  They claim they renovated it, but it looks the same to me.  Scuzzy dirty sidewalls, band aids in the bottom and random dirt in the corners.  Yuck.  Tony says a sign was up saying it had been shut down by the health department. That makes more sense to me since I was well on my way to chlorine burns again.  This week they have it shut down to replace the lights in the pool.  I didn’t even know the thing had lights in it and I’ve been swimming there for over 4 years.

My backup plan when this happens is to swim at another gym, but it’s further away, and when my schedule is as limited as it is these days, it makes it really hard to be motivated about it when every traffic light is in a conspiracy to take my precious minutes of sleep away from me.  But I go anyway.  Because even though I hate getting home after 10pm, and then I have to shower and lotion up, I love the feeling of accomplishment I feel.

Our community renovated all of its pools this past winter and, yes, it’s a renovation you can actually see.  I can’t wait for them to start heating them for the season… in April.  I will be posting pictures of the newly fancified pools and in the meantime, I keep telling myself, “Just until April, just until April.”

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Filed under I feel Irritated, Mermaid Envy, Who I am

Letter to our 14 month old

Dear William,

On 02/08/2013 you turned 14 months (or 1 year 2 months) old.

You weigh 30 pounds 5.5  ounces, and are wearing size 24 month clothing.  I put an 18 month size onesie on you this past week and was horrified to discover that it no longer fits!  I’m finding that more and more we’re preferring to put regular shirts on you (instead of onesies), as they just seem to fit better.  Your torso continues to be quite long, and your legs shorter… meaning that if I put you in pants that fit your leg length you would wear 18 month size, however, your waist and thighs fit best in size 24 month pants… so you have to wear 24 month size pants, rolled up a bit, and no skinny jeans for you!  I went up a size in socks for you, so you’re now wearing 2T-3T socks.  You still fit in size 6EW shoes.  You are measuring (as best as I can tell) at 32″ tall, which explains why you are suddenly able to see the things your elephant trunk hands are grabbing way up there on the counters.

At 13 months 1 week, shortly after the last update, you discovered the moon.  Interestingly, it was a discovery you made during the day time (vs. night when the moon is brighter).  You looked up and there was the moon visible in the early afternoon hours.  You pointed and were told, “That’s the moon.”  Now, every time we’re outside during the day, you look up, smile and say, “Mmmmmnnnnnn.”   One morning this past month, we came downstairs and were headed outside.   Apparently, everyone but me has been consistent about putting shoes on you, because just as we were going out the door, you pointed at your shoes and said, “Shooooz!”  Oh, right.  You need your shoes, too!

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We spent one Sunday morning this month with family, and your cousins.  You had a blast running around with them.  We also tried out our gym’s daycare to see how you liked it, based on the fact that you didn’t want to leave, cried when your father tried to remove you and ended up having to use blueberries to distract you. I would say it was a success and you likely would like to visit there again sometime.

We take you out to eat all the time and people are so impressed with your table manners.  You sit there like a big boy in your highchair, eating away on the food that we give you.   I continue to love having meal times with you.  You love to engage us in laughter while we’re eating, meal times have never been so much fun!  You haven’t really been into vegetables this month, not a big deal, I’m sure you’ll come back to them.  For now you seem to be really interested in fruits and various meats.  Although, Costco samples are always a huge hit with you.

You love to “read” your books, anywhere, anytime… in the car, on the changing table, in the middle of the floor.  There is no time that’s not a good time to read.  I couldn’t agree with you more about that, by the way.  One morning this past weekend, you tore a page out of one of your paper books. It was the first time you’ve ever done that. You proclaimed, “UH OHHHHH!” big and loud after you did it and looked really sad about it. I agreed with you that it was an “uh oh.” I left the page on the floor. Every single time you walked by it, you looked at it sadly and said “UH OH.” I bet you don’t do that again.

Your nursing has been irregular a few times this month.  One Saturday in particular is coming to mind… you would nurse one side just fine and then I would switch you to the other side and you would cry and cry.  Then you would stand in front of me and want to nurse, but then would cry when I tried to position you, several positions we tried.  You had been holding the back on your head a lot that day (you do that when you’re teething), and so finally, I just hugged you and then when you calmed down a bit, I tilted you back so I could see your upper gums.  There were two teeth that had just barely poked through the gums, you poor thing.  I dosed you with Tylenol, and we waited.  And then we tried again, and you were better.   Other times I’ll offer you a toy that you can examine, which will take your mind off the pain you’re feeling. Your “wake up” nursing, I’ve started changing your clothes between sides, and that seems to help.   Then there are days when nursing is complete and utter joy for both of us.  You clap when you get letdowns, you reach for my hand and pattycake it, you laugh at your hilariousness.  You hum and sing and talk to yourself when nursing.

There was about a week’s period of time this month that you were scared of baths.  Given how much you love baths, I decided to try a few different things.  Even though you were just sitting there enjoying your bath and out of nowhere you started crying and wanted out, I thought we would start by eliminating the most common issue, which is water in the face.  Thus, the first thing I did was start using a rinseless shampoo.  The next thing I did was buy you a couple new bath toys… a bathketball set (I didn’t type that with a lisp, that’s really how it’s spelled) and a bubble blower.  I also had your Grandma D. give you some play time in the tub sans water. One of those things, or all of them combined seemed to fix the problem.    Now when it’s bathtime, you don’t even run the hallways anymore, you just run straight to the tub and want in!  Tonight, in fact, the night of your 14 month birthday, we went upstairs and I told you we were going to run your bath.  You trotted ahead of me and opened the bathroom door, went in and waited expectantly by the tub for me to start running your bath water.

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Sleep:  Your schedule lately has been really great.  You generally sleep well at nights and are taking decent naps.  Nowadays, a “short nap” for you is considered 1.5 hours.  An “average nap” is 2.5 hours.  This is a sweet spot.  On weekends we’re so busy as a family that often times I’ll push your nap time a little later so that you can stay out with us a little later.  Then you gradually revert back to the normal schedule — bedtime around 8pm, wake up at 630, and one nap in the middle of the day.  One night this past month, as usual for bed we nursed and you didn’t fall asleep as you normally do.  So I put you in your crib and rubbed your back.  You tolerated that for awhile, and finally you rolled to your side, waved at me and said, “Bye bye!”  Surprised, I kissed you goodnight and told you to have sweet dreams.  I turned to leave your room expecting you to protest, but instead you rolled back on your tummy and went to sleep.    As amazing as that night was, the next night you woke 2 hours after having been asleep and cried and cried, even your father couldn’t console you… the only person who could make it better was me.  Again, I was shocked.

Developments:  Your upper two “first molars” broke through the gums, your upper left one on 1/25/2013, your upper right one on 1/28/2013.  Your lower two “first molars” are well on their way.  You walk all the time now, preferring it over crawling.  You even run.  You hold our hand while walking.  You love to crawl up and down the stairs.

New words:  Moon.  Shoes.  Blueberries.  Repeating last word of sentence I say.    Your enunciation of “Hi” is much more clear this month, it used to sound like “haaaaaiiii” but now it’s very clear that you’re saying “Hi!”  I swear there are times when you say things, but I must be imagining it, like I’ll ask you if you’re ready to go, and you replied, “ready to go!”  I looked at your father in shock.  He just nodded.  Or I’ll ask you if you have something, and you’ll reply, “Yes!”  And sure enough, you do.  I asked you last night if you wanted a piece of banana, you held out your hand and replied, “piece nana?” The other day, your Grandma D. asked you where something had gone, you ran to your Lighting Ride-On, opened it’s “trunk” and pulled the item out that she wanted.  She was so surprised!  Last weekend, you picked up the tub cleaning brush and tried to brush your hair with it. I told you it was for the tub, so you turned and dropped it in the tub.  Child, this communication stuff with you is awesome.

Things I want to remember about you this month:  How when we’re dressing you, if you’re holding a toy, you’ve started automatically, without prompting, to switch the toy you’re holding to your hand when we get one hand through the sleeve.  How when you’re done being dressed I stand you up on the changing table and you reach to hug me.  The way you chew your food, with food all up front (because that’s where your teeth are), and you put your hand up there and hold the food in your mouth.  The way your little hand feels in mine when you are walking alongside of us.  The way you love to dance and bust a move to music.  You still love singing.   How you think taking your shoes off is just about the funniest thing to do when we’re driving down the road, the velcro ripping sound gives you away every time, as do your anticipatory giggles of us telling you, “WILLIAM, PUT YOUR SHOES BACK ON!” The way you giggle, your tongue between your teeth, as you follow the CATS around because you think they’re playing hide and seek with you.  The way you chase me around each evening saying “Booooooo” when I come into your sight.  How you reach for the ice and water dispenser on the freezer door and love to snap the handles.  How you yell “BALL!!” when we head into Target and how you sing “Ah Ah Ah” when we head into Walmart.

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One of your favorite things these days is to go to the little playground within our community.  Your Grandma D. enjoys wheeling you there in the stroller and letting you out to walk around and examine your world that is full of puddles, snails, bugs and grass.  You go play in the dirt, splash puddles and roam around and explore, it makes me happy to hear of your adventures, because it reminds me of my childhood.  I used to make mud pancakes and serve them up regularly in our outside playhouse that my daddy built us. I splashed in puddles, inspected snails and “drove” junker cars. I played cowboys and Indians under the summer sun and splashed in a kiddie pool while my daddy streamed water warmed in the hose over us.  I put letters in the neighbor’s mailbox for their horses to read. Now, I’ve grown up to be a mommy of a little boy — you — so in that way, I feel well equipped for the job.  As much of a tomboy I was growing up, I was also very much a little girl who loved to play with baby dolls and Barbie dolls, paint my fingernails, put makeup on and treasure the fragility of flowers in bloom.  It is my hope to teach you about picking flowers and weaving them into jewelry, and how to paint fingernails, and let you watch me put makeup on, because I want you feel comfortable enough with yourself that you’ll be able to do that with your daughter someday.

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Love, Momma

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Filed under Letter to William, Our Kid is Cute