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Showing posts from November, 2007

Things You May Not Have Known

The scene: Last night, bedtime.

Phoebe: Mommy, are there monsters?

Me: No, no monsters.

Pho: There are no blue monsters to scare me?

Me: No, there are no monsters here at all.

Mallory: Phoebe, monsters aren't real. They're like vampires and unicorns and other things that aren't real.

Pho: Oh!

Mal: Mommy, what other things aren't real?

Me: Um, dragons.

Mal: Yeah. What else?

Me: Dinosaurs.

Mal: Dinosaurs are real!

Me: Well, you're right. They used to be real, but there are no live dinosaurs now.

Mal: I know what happened to them.

Me: You do?

Mal: Yeah! A big planet came and crushed them and they all ran away because they were scared and they died.

Me: Hm.

Mal: Is that right?

Me: No one knows for sure, but yes, many people believe that an asteroid, which is a big big big big rock from outer space, crashed into the earth and changed the weather so much that the dinosaur's food couldn't grow, and so the dinosaurs died.

Mal: Yeah, because if you don't have any food for a long l…

What Really Happened

My mom’s comment to yesterday’s post was that I have a good memory. To which I respond: How could a kid not remember that? But the truth is, I fudged the whole thing a bit for the sake of brevity. This is the true – and really not all that much more interesting – version, which may really make my mom marvel at my memory.

Christmas Day 1977 fell on a Sunday, and because my parents were evidently daunted by the prospect of getting four kids (8, 5, 3-month-old twins) up, Santa Claused, dressed, breakfasted, and out the door for services at my Grandma’s church, 30 miles away, they requested of Santa Claus that he visit us a day early. So I actually lost my tooth on December 23. On Christmas Eve morning, I woke up, found the Tooth Fairy’s offering, was suitably delighted, and trotted off down the hall to the bathroom. Moments later I heard my older sister shout, “Krista, guess who came last night?”

“The Tooth Fairy, I know, duh,” I replied. (Oh wait. That’s what my 5-year-old daughter would…

Worlds Collide

When I was 5-almost-6, I lost a tooth on Christmas Eve. And because my parents are awesome, yes, I had both a quarter under my pillow AND presents under the tree the next morning. When you're 5-almost-6, it just doesn't get any better than that.

I wonder if Santa shared the cookies with the Tooth Fairy?

The tension builds...

...as we start the countdown to Mallory's Sixth Birthday Celebration. This Saturday, an unknown number of little girls (do people not understand what RSVP means?) will converge upon my house for an Event which will include a Craft (yes, me, organizing a craft, what was I thinking?), a Tea Party (with real tea! and hot chocolate for those who don't like tea! and lemonade for those who don't like either!), and Cake. Yikes! I'm not sure if I'm up for this. My biggest dilemma is -- are the parents going to stay? Because they don't have to and in fact I'd prefer that they don't because X number of little girls plus X number of their mothers times the number of my chairs in my house equals not enough. But some of these moms don't really know me -- I mean, all they know about me is that I'm Mallory's mom, so maybe they won't feel comfortable dropping off their kid and leaving. I'm not sure what to do about that although it would help if the…

Thankful

Last night Mallory brought me a baby doll and said, "Ma'am, would you mind babysitting my daughter for a little while? Her name is Sarah and she's 2 months old."

"Certainly," I said.

"Thank you. I have a few more, wait right here." She subsequently brought me Elizabeth, Melissa, Molly, Mae, Snow White, Belle, Malilla, Zella, and another Sarah. The children, she explained, ranged from aged 1 month to 4 years and some of them were twins.

"That's a lot of children," I said.

"Yes, and I need you to babysit for me because I have to fly to Pennsylvania on an airplane to pick up my other daughter, Nyah." She added, "I only have girl children."

"Another daughter! Wow, you must be very busy with all these kids," I said.

She nodded, and sighed heavily. "I am very tired, all the days."



I am so thankful for my children. I am even more thankful that there are only two of them.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Who Were Jeannette and Isabella and why did they need a torch?

I need me some new Christmas music. I've been listening to the same stuff for about ten years now, and it's all stuff that was already kind of outdated, like, um, the Oak Ridge Boys and the Osmonds. (Now I'm all embarrassed for myself.)

I like Christmas music that's a bit zippy -- the Rat Pack Christmas album is good, for example (Chris is a Rat Pack fan). I bought Mallory the "Olivia Newton John Christmas Album" last week and Olivia's still got some pipes but wow, all the songs are really slow and dull. I like carols and non-secular songs equally, all other things considered.

"White Christmas" is my least favorite song.

So, any suggestions for me?

(Is my post title too obscure?)

Much

When Phoebe was a baby I made up the Fee-fi-Phoebe song for her. It was no great feat of composition, I just improvised the lyrics of what is already a nonsense song -- the Fee-fi-fiddli-i-oh section of I've Been Working on the Railroad/Someone's in the Kitchen with Dinah. (Are those supposed to be two separate songs? I've never quite understood their relationship.) Thus:

Fee fi Phoebe i oh
Fee fi Phoebe i oh oh oh oh
Fee fi Phoebe i oh
Phoebe I love you so!

I sang it quite a bit when she was an infant, but she was never the type of kid who liked to be sung or rocked to sleep, so after a while it faded away. I revived during the great Tantrum Week of 2007 (the tantrums really did only last a week, go figure), and now Phoebe asks me to sing it to her, or can be heard singing it to herself.

The adorable part is that after I sing the last line, "Phoebe I love you so," Phoebe chimes in with, "Much!"

And it's true.



I sang to Mallory a lot; it was part of our be…

L-L-Liar

The other day Mallory came home from school and said that she hadn't gotten her hot lunch. The teacher said she wasn't on the list, so sorry, and poor Mallory was hungry all day long. Chris and I were all outraged and I stormed into the principal's office the next morning demanding why Mallory hadn't been fed and why no one had notified me of the problem. (Well, if you know me at all, you'll know that storming and demanding are not things that I do. I inquired without smiling. Take that!) The school secretary was concerned and promised to investigate and the upshot of it all was that Mallory lied. She completely lied. She did get her lunch, she ate some of it, but she was really hungry when she got home from school and wanted a really big snack so she just lied.

(The secretary was so nice about it. When she told me that Mallory did in fact have lunch I said, "I'm sorry that she's a big liar" and she said, "Oh no, I'm sure she was just conf…

K-K-Kindergarten

I had a parent-teacher conference regarding Mallory's kindergarten progress last week. Mrs. F said that on the whole Mallory is doing very well, and that in fact sometimes she's surprised at how well Mallory is doing because it often appears that Mallory is off in outer space instead of paying attention. She said that Mallory consistently answers very hard questions correctly (regarding things like sequences and logic -- yeah, logic, in kindergarten!) but that sometimes still misses easy things like rhyming. She said Mallory is a mystery to her. I said to join the club. Oh, and Mallory is also consistently the slowest child in the class to accomplish tasks such as putting away crayons and packing up at the end of the day and often forgets things such as where to find her math workbook, which is in the exact same location every day. She asked if Mallory were this way at home and I said yes but I thought all 5-year-olds were that way. Apparently they are not and we need to work …

Is this silly?

My girls have millions of baby dolls. All shapes and sizes, ranging from a $2.99 Walmart special to a much more expensive Madame Alexander newborn. Neither girl has a particular favorite doll; if a baby is required at any given time, any baby will do, and it's always easy to find a baby doll as they're scattered all over the house, throughout the halls, in the laundry baskets, underneath the seats of the car.

In spite of the quite adequate supply of dolls in the house, and in spite of the fact that Mallory is getting a very special doll for her birthday next month from her grandmom and aunts, Mallory still wants a doll for Christmas. To be specific, she wants the doll that eats and wets and cries and pees and makes kissing noises and probably does your taxes for you as well.

It's tempting to just say no, that we have enough dolls. And in fact that's just what Chris does say.

And yet...I got a doll every Christmas until I was ten or eleven years old, and I remember every s…

These are the moments I should be counting

Vote For Me!!

This is kind of embarrassing, but, on a whim I entered my summer haiku in a contest sponsored by one of my favorite bloggers. And I'm a finalist! And if I win I get some kind of prize! So, if you have a minute, go vote for me!

And if you do, I'll stop using exclamation points!

PS Also read his blog, it's hilarious.

In My Head

In my head there's an ever-ticking clock which computes the number of minutes I spend with my kids. This clock tells me that it's okay to be fifteen minutes picking them up after work on Thursday, because they got an extra two hours with me on Monday because I worked from home. Or that I need to make sure to be a little early tomorrow, because I have a 30-minute meeting with Mallory's teacher in the evening. The clock ticks loudly at me when I go anywhere without the kids on the weekend. The clock reminds me not to be annoyed when my kids wake up extra early on the weekend, because that's extra time to spend together. The clock tells me that Phoebe and Mallory are without me about 8.5 hours a day, but seven of those hours don't count for Mallory because of school, and two don't count for Phoebe because of naps. Once, when I was having trouble falling asleep, the clock and I computed the total annual difference between the time I spend at work and the time I spe…

Proof, as if more was needed, that vegetables are evil

I recently decided to follow Aimee's lead and incorporate nu-tri-tion into my family's meals. Last week I spent a really, really long time steaming and pureeing a butternut squash, a food that I have never in my life willingly ingested. I stacked about a million little plastic containers of pureed squash in my freezer, where they awaited their introduction into spaghetti sauces and applesauce muffins.

A few days later, my freezer died.

Do you think that I'm going to dare to put pureed vegetables into the shiny new freezer that we'll be purchasing tonight?

Not a chance.

So should we go with stainless steel? It's pretty but I'm wondering if, since we are a household with children, it would just end up all smudged.

Incidentally, you know it's going to be bad when the repairman comes in, sees your non-functioning refrigerator, and says, "Huh. Frig.i.daire." Then he says, "How old is it?" and you say, "Seven years," and he says, "Uh…

Everyone needs a Mimi

Remember the first season of Friends, when Ross's ex-wife has the baby and Monica holds him for the first time and tries to think of something profound to say, and finally blurts out, "I will always have gum!" ? Well, that's the kind of auntie my sister-in-law is.



Okay, Mimi might not always have gum, exactly, but that's okay because half of my children can't chew gum yet anyway. But Mimi always has something -- a little treat, a surprise, a few pictures to look at or a cool keyring to play with. Mimi is always available to take my girls to Dairy Queen for an ice cream cone. Mimi is excellent at arts and crafts projects. Mimi is always there on special occasions (like Trick or Treat!) but she's also always willing to drop everything and come over at 7:25 on a random Thursday evening, should Mallory decide she wants to see her.

Mimi has endured offenses ranging from copious newborn spitup to undeserved four-year-old snottiness, but she always forgives. Mimi…

Happy Hallo-whine

This was Mallory when she was...almost three, I guess:



It was then that I renamed the occasion "Hallo-whine," to the amusement of a few. (Apparently it wasn't as funny as the comment Chris made years ago to a group of finicky candy-grubbers who came to our door: "Hey, this is Trick or Treat, not Pick Your Treat!" But I'm losing my point.)

Mallory's Halloween demeanor wasn't too much different last night, except that now she's almost six and a bit better able to control herself. She looked lovely in her ballerina fairy dress:



...but the whining started as soon as we left the house and didn't stop til we got back. It was partially my fault; she wanted to trick-or-treat with the little girl next door, but I'm not much of a fan of the little girl next door, plus that little girl's mom (of whom I am less of a fan) was wearing a witch outfit that was freaking Phoebe out, so I held us back with a variety of excuses (oops, gotta go potty! oops…