Tag Archives: parenthood

I’m so proud of you

Rosie walks at 13 months! We’re so proud of her and of her big sister, Nora for being so sweet and supportive of her. She has been cruising for a few weeks now, but she took her first few steps yesterday. Today, she walked across the floor all the way to Nora.

What else is Rosie up to? She has two new teeth on the top, so that makes eight teeth! She says Mama, bye (with a Southern accent– Bah!), hi (ha!), ball (bah!), Nora (Rara), and something that could mean this or that (datssss). She loves to point at everything and say datsssss or yayackkkk. She really wants to talk about everything she sees. She makes a bunch of animal noises– hooo hooo (owl), pppp (cow or elephant), gah gah gah (duck), raaaaaar (bear, lion or miscellaneous animal) and my favorite- blehbuh blehbuh (fish). She gives hugs, putting her head in your lap and kisses (mah!) She just learned how to drink from a sippy cup and a straw. She wants to join in the fun, whatever it is. She is always mimicking the noises that Nora makes, and she leans forward in her car seat so she can get a better look at whatever shenanigans Nora is up to. Her belly laugh is the best. She is so sweet.

Now, Nora. She really seems like a big kid now. She has a big kid double bed, she can get herself dressed, and she just looks so tall suddenly. She is very thoughtful when she speaks. Sometimes, she’ll look very pensive when I peer back in the rear-view mirror, and she brings up something we talked about earlier that day.

Here’s an example: “Mommy, can I drive the car?”

“When you’re sixteen, you can drive.”

“Why?”

“Because that’s how old you have to be. You take a class called driver’s ed, and you learn how to drive safely.”

(Insert Nora asking “Why?” several more times to whatever I say.)

“When am I going to be sixteen?”

“In twelve years.”

(Quiet for awhile)

“But, why am I three for so long and four for so long?”

“Well, you were three for a whole year, and now you’ll be four for a whole year.”

“But that’s a long time before I’ll be sixteen! What if I’m four forever?”

“You won’t be, I promise.”

I really enjoy these deep talks.

Nora loves art and gets very focused whenever she’s working on something. She made a beautiful painting called “Rainbow World.” She put her paint brush down and said she was finished. “When Daddy gets home,” she said, “I’m going to tell him that I’m not going to paint any more days.” I think she meant that she had created her masterpiece, and needed to paint no more. Luckily, she changed her mind about that later that afternoon and decided she’d like to paint again.

 

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February pics

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by | March 2, 2016 · 8:23 pm

I want you to stay too long

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Nora

At three and a half, Nora is a strong-minded little monkey who swings back and forth between wanting to do everything “all by myself” and needing her mommy and daddy.

Developing independence means she sticks to her point-of-view and doesn’t back down. Logic does not sway her. Life for Nora is all about what she wants and does not want. “I want milk right now,” “I want to watch a little something!” “I don’t want to ride my scooter,” “No, I don’t want to go to the pool!”

We went to Rockland Lake so she could ride her scooter. She was distracted by all of the families who had gathered at picnic benches for cookouts, and by the smell of hot dogs, hamburgers and chicken wafting in the air.

“I want to eat dinner,” she decided, stepping off her scooter, trying to pull her helmet off.

“We didn’t bring dinner,” we said.

“Well, that’s okay,” she said walking over to join another family’s cookout. “There’s food over there. We can eat some of their food.”

“But that’s not our food,” we said. “We’ll turn around, go home and get dinner.”

She wouldn’t have it. “Nooo!” she yelled, about to sit down with the family. “I want dinner here!”

I’m trying to remind myself that though exhausting at times, she is showing character traits that will serve her later in life: She knows what she wants. She’s learning how to negotiate. She’s smart. She’s a problem solver. If we didn’t bring dinner, we could just go ask those nice people over there if they have a few hot dogs to spare. It must be hard to be so small, to do what grownups want all the time.

She seems to need us less and less as she asserts herself and learns how to do things for herself. But she still needs us. She’s afraid of the dark and she won’t let us leave her room so she can go to sleep. Lying in her bed, she wraps her arms around my head and says, “I want you stay too long! I really want you to stay too long!” I’d like to get to sleep and I don’t want to have a nighttime routine that never ends, and yet, I like that she’s holding onto me a little.

Rosie

Rosie rolls over! For a while she could only do back to front and then started complaining because she couldn’t turn back over. She’s learning to turn the other way. She is a close talker. She likes to get right up there so our eyes become one eye and open her mouth and try to eat me. She likes to suck on her fingers, my fingers, anybody’s fingers. Maybe those teeth are coming in. She likes to reach out and grab my face and squeeze it in her little lobster claws. She is so chill and smiley all the time. She likes the Jumparoo. She likes to do a Tarzan yell. She says gggghhh and bwah and ahbah and she is working on being a ventriloquist talking with her mouth closed. She is so chubby! She grabs her hands and feet and looks at them with wonder. She gets startled a lot. She is taking big sister Nora’s rough hugs in stride. She laughs when you kiss her belly. She’s delicious.

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Mother’s Day

I am so grateful to be a mother to these two beautiful girls.

Today wasn’t perfect. Everyone was having meltdowns first thing in the morning. We were in a rush to get out the door, Rosie was crying and Nora was lying on the floor, protesting because she wanted to wear the butterfly shirt not the orange shirt. And I was like, “Don’t you know you’re supposed to be really nice to me on Mother’s Day???!!!”

But, they can be pretty sweet too.

Rosie is a warm little muffin with roley-poly arms and legs and a dark fuzzy head with a little round, red birthmark in the back. She knocks her head into mine when she’s looking around. Sometimes, I feel her little tongue as she starts sucking on my arm. She’s still kind of a primate. Her arms and legs are constantly moving and she doesn’t seem to know yet that they belong to her. She has started smiling at us and cooing a little. It takes a lot of effort and arm/leg pumping to get out a “nnngah.”

Last night, Rosie and I rocked in the chair and she fell asleep. We sat for a long time together, her sleeping on me, her soft head against my cheek. Sometimes it’s nice to just sit and let her sleep on me. I know now how fast it really does go. We won’t always be able to sit and snuggle for hours (as much as I will want to. I’m going to be that mom.)

Nora is becoming a big girl — even more so after becoming a big sister. She loves Rosie so much, and although she sometimes can’t control her impulse to squeeze or rub just a little too hard, she can also be super sweet saying “It’s ok Wosie” when Rosie is crying or “She’s so cute!” “She makes little noises!” “I think she likes me!”

She has an active imaginary life. She uses a high pitched voice to make the guys in her stuffed animal collection talk. She is always thinking about them and looking for someone or other.

“Mommy,” she’ll say at night before bed, looking a little concerned.

“Yes Nora?”

“Where’s Turtle-Turtle’s Mommy?”

We never know where to find the guy she’s looking for, and so before bed, we are sent on a rescue mission.

She has named them all and knows each of their relationships to one another. (Baby Baby has a baby named Baby.  Nora says she’s a mommy to Leopard Bear and Fluff. It is always Leopard Bear’s birthday and Nora is always throwing a party for him.  Also, Aliyana is Leopard Bear and Fluff’s  baby. I think this technically means 1. Leopard bear and Fluff are in kind of an incestuous relationship and 2. Nora is a grandmother.)

Last night, I read Nora a story which was nice because lately, Kevin is usually the one to read the story while I’m feeding Rosie. You know, a lot has changed since Rosie was born. It’s been kind of a beautiful haze. Our old routines have been replaced with new ones and we’re all learning how to adjust. So, we read Olivia and she pointed to the picture of the pig  in a tutu and said “She looks like a princess. She looks so pretty.” We snuggled and she asked if we could do “the really loud thing.”

“What is the really loud thing?” I asked.

“What is it?” she said.

“I don’t know,” I said. “You brought it up.”

But then I did know. She wanted us to yell “And now it’s time for… night night tiiiiiime!” really really loudly and then laugh. We did this every night before Rosie was born, but we’d stopped recently. So we yelled the really loud thing and then she gave me a giant squeeze, which big kids don’t always do anymore without a little prodding.

I haven’t been very good about writing blog posts recently because of all of the, you know, adjusting we’ve been doing. But, I really wish I could record every moment and press pause whenever I wanted to. Because every thing that comes out of Nora’s mouth is hilarious and amazing. And Rosie is just so warm and snuggly.  I wonder what it will feel like a few years from now when they are older to read these posts again.

I feel blessed on this Mother’s Day to have such a beautiful family, a loving husband and two beautiful girls. I’ll take ’em, meltdowns and all. 🙂

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Oh, well, sure

Nora wakes up from her nap with her perpetual bed head and asks, “Is it good morning time?” or sometimes, “is it dark outside?”

She tells us stories: “It’s a story about once upon a time and a little girl went to a party and said I love you!”

Her favorite cereal is Special K, which is funny to me. It’s like she’s a fifty year old woman.

We went to the Nyack Halloween parade and the fire trucks were very loud and made her upset.

She processed what happened over and over after the fact and told anyone who would listen: “The fire trucks were too noisy and, uh, I was crying and, uh, I was sad but then the music started and I was, uh, happy already though.”

Nora can at times be easily distracted. The other day I said it was time to leave the playground and she was hysterical because of, you know, the injustice. She did the limp ragdoll body thing (so clever!) “Look at the birds,” I said. She laughed, elated suddenly, her face still tear-stained. “Yeah you made me happy and the birds are coming too!”

When she is elated she’ll let you know. She climbs up the stairs of the playground and says, “I’m so happy right now!”

She’s sweet: Every time I cough or sneeze she gives me a hug and rubs my back. “I made you happy!”

Kevin bumps his head getting her out of the car. She rubs his shoulder. “I’m sorry you bumped your head,” she says. “It’ll be okay.”

She often answers questions by saying, “Oh, well sure,” but often does not do the thing you’re asking because she’s very busy.

“Will you draw me a picture of a camel?” I ask.

“A camel? Oh well, sure. But first I better erase this.”

“Will you tell me a story?”

“Oh well, sure, but right now I’m sleepy and I better rest.”

“Do you like steak?”
“Steak? Well I dooon’t. But I’ll try!”
She sits on the couch and says she wants to watch Daniel Tiger. “Let’s play,” I say, putting a puzzle together by myself.

“Well, I’m stuffy so I better rest,” she says.
Her logic sometimes makes me laugh:

“Can you draw stars?”

“Well I can’t.”

“Why not?”

“Because I’m very whiny today.”

“I don’t like this donkey tail game.”

“Why not?”

“Because I’m sad.”

“Why are you sad?”

“Because I don’t like this donkey tail game.”

“Maybe next time Rachel and Brian will come to school with me tomorrow. But Caitlin and Leah won’t come to school with me.”
“Why not?”
“Because I’m sad.”

“Why are you sad?”
“Because Caitlin and Leah won’t come to school with me tomorrow.”
Other funny/random things she’s said:

“We see a reindeer but it’s not raining!”
“When I was little, my grandmother made me a house and it was out of blocks.”
“This is a bear cave. You’re going to be a bear and I’m going to be scared.”
She still likes to sing, constantly narrating what she’s doing. She’s got a few classics such as “eat your cereal,” “figure it out,” “red blue green and yellow,” and “yummy yummy yummy.”

We did a three day potty training boot camp, which meant we didn’t go anywhere for three days and let her run around in underwear and pee all over the house. She did really well! She had accidents every half hour the first morning, and then none after that. Now she wears underwear during waking hours. She’s not yet at the point that she tells us when she has to go and she’s often reluctant to sit on the potty because she’s very busy playing. But once she starts peeing, she gets this giant grin. She’s had a few accidents here and there, but she’s doing really great! I have to admit, though it’s the right move for right now, it’s bitter sweet for me that she’s out of diapers. Our little Shmooples is growing up!

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Everything will be okay Mommy

Nora is just as silly, goofy, affectionate, energetic, thoughtful, sweet and funny as ever. Here are some highlights.

Trip to the city

Nora packs up her pocketbook, sits three or four of her “guys” in the baby stroller and leaves the room.

“I gotta go.”

“Where are you going?” I say.

“I gotta meet Nicole in the city.” (Nicole is a good friend of mine.)

“What are you two going to do there?”

“We’re gonna eat coffee.”

Then, mimicking mommy she comes back in the room. “Oh! I forgot my wallet and my purse!”

Fears

We were at a friend’s birthday party at Tumble Bee and Nora had a blast. But when, at the end of the party, a person in fuzzy bee costume emerged from the back to a rap song which chanted “Bumble Bee, bumble bee,” Nora was not having it. She burst into tears and clutched onto the leg of the nearest staff member. I picked her up and hugged her, and she let out a nervous laugh as we watched the other kids hug the giant bee.

“I want to go home,” she cried.

“That’s not a real bee,” I said. “That’s just a girl in a bee costume, like for Halloween.”

“I want to go home,” she said, kind of like, look, I think I know what a giant bee looks like, and that is one right there.

The whole drive home and for the rest of the evening, she rehashed the debacle over and over again. “Da bee came out and I was crying. I said,” (in a mock crybaby voice) “‘I want Mommy!’ And he waved his hands like this” (waving her hands in front of her). “Maybe we’ll see him again.”

She is still rehashing, three weeks later. She’ll bring it up randomly in the car. “It’s not a real bee!” she says. “It’s a guuurl in a costume.”

I’m impressed by the way that she copes with one of her fears. She processes the situation and talks herself out of being afraid. Kid’s got a good head on her shoulders.

Crib mishap

Okay, it’s probably time for a toddler bed. It’s just that, I love that nice long nap she takes every day. And friends tell me the toddler bed might put an abrupt halt to the nap.

She climbed out of the pack n’ play at Nana and Poppop’s house, pulled a sheet off the bed, knocked a gate down and made her way to the bottom of the stairs.

“I want to play with Caitlin and Leah!” she was yelling. I ran up to get her when I realized her yelling had gotten louder. So loud, it almost sounded like she was no longer in the attic. Because she wasn’t.

She is probably too darn big for that pack n’ play anyway. Sigh.

Lovable moments

She says, “Mommy you’re so cute.”

“I want to play with you. Because I love you.”

“I’m so glad you’re here!”

I sneeze and she yells from the other room, “Are you okay, Mommy?”

“I’m okay,” I say.

“Everything will be okay Mommy!” she says.

She sure keeps me on my toes but I sure love her.

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“Motherhood Absentmindedness”

Hi everyone!

I just wanted to share my essay, “Motherhood Absentmindedness,” which was published in Brain, Child last week.

The essay begins:

You think I’d learn not to rest my coffee cup on the roof of the car while buckling my daughter Nora into her car seat, but sometimes, I only have so many hands. How many times have I backed out of the driveway and heard the clunk of a thing hitting the pavement? My phone, my sunglasses, a water bottle, a lunch bag, a juice box. And I have spent much of my existence searching for lost items, so much so that my two-year-old has a habit of walking into my closet with her hands in the air, saying, “I’m just looking for something”….

To keep reading, click on the link. http://www.brainchildmag.com/2014/09/motherhood-absentmindedness/

Thanks!

Sara

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