Friday, April 18, 2008


This morning while Noodle was happily pointing at the cat and hacking out her sound for “Cat” (“AC- ACK- ACK!”), I asked her to go get the truck. She looked at me, crawled over to the truck and brought it to me. Definitely serious neuron work going on in there, despite the alien communication skills.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Sunshine and Time

Today was the first afternoon in a while that we had unrushed time together as a family and the weather was brilliant. I met J and the kids at a park after work. Q ran around happily playing with children he'd never met before, with a happy, "Hi Mommy!" when he saw me.

Noodle has a new word, her first word outside of Dada, and spent the afternoon calling everything "Ack!" which is Noodle for "Cat!" You can tell it means Cat because it gets very animated and repetitive when she's near or pointing to a cat. Otherwise you'd think she had something caught in her throat.

She also indiscriminately calls many things Dada, but has clearly indicated the understanding of the word again and used it when he handed her a pacifier late one night. Very, very sweet.

When we got home after running errands, we had dinner on the patio, for the first time this spring. I'm going to brainstorm strategies to make this easier because it is simply so nice to eat outside, except for the lugging of high chairs, food, silverware, drinks, plateware, and children who need constant supervision.

Q is on spring vacation this week and you'd think he had a rigorous academic schedule by how much he seems to enjoy not being rushed out of the house at 8:50 each morning. Personally, I'm relieved that we're coming up with a plan for summer activities for him. Last summer he was a poster boy for 'Idle hands are the devil's playthings'. We're just not clever enough to keep a preschooler busy for months on end.

Today he declared with all the importance of a tiny Buddha (or Yoda) that "If upstairs was downstairs, then downstairs would be upstairs."

For those who would like an update on No Thank You bites, it does appear that I won that skirmish. He ate the exact same foods we fought over the following night, with barely an attempt for negotiating (and actually he ate the cheese toast with much gusto). The trick, it seems, is to remember his preschool teacher's recommendation that you offer the "less preferred" items first, then, after you are satisfied by the No Thank You bite, offer the food they'll actually eat.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Fruitless Battles

At preschool, the kids are trained to take 'No Thank You' bites. I need to investigate what level of cooperation my son is giving them regarding these bites.

This evening I gave Q a few peas (6) and some toasted cheese. These came at the end of the meal (they were finally ready) where he cleared off veggie sausage, pineapple, milk and perhaps something else I can't recall.

I told Q I expected him to eat a no thank you bite of each consisting of 3 peas and 1 actual bite of the cheese toast. He refused. I insisted. He refused. I insisted. He refused. I insisted.

So finally I left him at the table (kitchen has been cleaned, his sister fed and played with, I've had a cup of tea, and kept insisting he stay at the table) and took Noodle upstairs for her bath. I hear him dump his plate into the sink (a required chore) and he padded up the stairs.

"Did you eat your no thank you bite?"

Ok. So what can I logically punish him with? This is beyond what I think is reasonable anyways (on the pick your battle front I have no idea why I am in the midst of this skirmish). So I inform him that I'm very disappointed in him. And that consequently tonight he can't use Noodle's bath water.

Yes, that's right, an actual and real punishment that sends him into a tantrum and even evokes a tear which wrenches my grumpy heart: he cannot use the bathwater used for his sister's bath. I don't know why it's so important to him, but he's made it clear in the past (you only make the mistake once) that he really wants to take a bath in her bathwater. Sometimes even with her in it, but usually after she's done. Got me why.

I believe I won the skirmish, but to be honest, I'm not sure.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Warmer Weather and Photo Catch Up

A few warm days have let us try out the Christmas gift from Grampa Lloyd (or Grampa Louie as he's known in preschool) and Granmary: a beautiful Radio Flyer wagon. Although the initial reaction seemed a bit lackluster, the kids are loving it. Today Noodle was humming as Q pulled her along (and this was after a meltdown). So Q pulled her down to see the horses down the street.

Noodle let out a piercing terrified scream upon seeing the horse. Not a pleasant surprise. She calmed down while I held her, but let's just say that's not where *she* wants to go for fun.

Below you can see how we came back, all up hill.

As you can see, Noodle now has four teeth.

And this is how she uses them:

But her most terrifying new potential was exhibited outside just this afternoon.

She can stand briefly without assistance, by which I mean for about the count of ten, rather than simply an alarming second or two. She had trouble getting the push toy to work outside (the lawn was too rough, but the street too smooth), but yesterday she surprised me by walking with it, unassisted, across the living room. She might get interested in walking again.