Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Did you notice, though, that this past year I tried to post something on TIBM every day? Quantity. Sometimes it was something worth reading and sometimes it was just a note to you, my loyal reader, about how I didn't have anything to share that day. Mostly my posts were somewhere in between, I think. Quite honestly, I think the overall quality of my writing suffered in my quest for quantity. It is not necessary for you to agree with me in the comments (please don't - I'll feel bad). The best month, in my opinion, was April when, in addition to my post-a-day challenge for myself, I took on a poem-a-day challenge with fairly pleasing results. And I had some other good stuff here and there (feel free to recall your personal favorites in the comments), but in general? Well...
So for 2009 I've decided to only post when I have something to say (except in April when I'll be doing the whole poem-a-day thing again*). I doubt that any of you finds yourself relying on your daily dose of TIBM, but if you do, I apologize now. I just can't do it anymore. I don't want to. I love blogging, but enough is enough. Hopefully you'll agree that this is better.
*Here is a challenge for any of you who will take it: you post a poem-a-day in April too! It doesn't have to be your work (but you need to give proper credit if it's not - MN wags her finger). I'll remind you. Let's do it together!
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
- I am likeable and useful and interesting and afraid of failing and overly critical of myself and a dog person.
- It's a good idea to ask for help when you need it and people usually want to help you when you really need them to. Especially the people who love you.
- I like to brag about 2 things: my girls and my baking. And
bothall 3 of those things are worth bragging about.
I'm not going to make any New Year's resolutions for 2009 because that's not my style, really. And also because I might break them and that would be failing and I'm afraid of that, you know? But there are some things I'd like to do. Maybe next year at this time we can check them off together...
I'd like to:
- Make good progress on my novel.
- Check out the Unitarian Church and join the choir.
- Teach the dog a command that consistently diverts him from jumping up.
What are you going to try to do in 2009?
Monday, December 29, 2008
Why I like HG:
- He's a great dad. I knew when I married him that he was good with kids (thanks for that PSP), and he still continues to confirm that. Sometimes he is impatient and gets aggravated and yells because our girls are at aggravating, frustrating, patience-trying ages, both of them, and I get like that too. But mostly he reads to them endlessly and cuts up their food and they use him like a jungle gym and he watches their TV shows (sometimes when football is on). He teases them and jokes with them and tucks them in at night (we share this job). He knows what they like and who their friends and teachers are. He's proud of them and they adore him.
- He's a loving husband. I can't remember if I commented recently on how he drove me to my first PhD appointment and I was surprised to learn that he actually wanted to drive me there. I assumed that he drove me places because I asked him to and that he didn't really want to, but I learned that day that I was wrong. It was inconvenient for him because he had to find some way to kill an hour since he couldn't come in with me, but he did it because he wanted to. He doesn't do all the things some guys do. There are a couple of things he doesn't do that I wish he would, but he does other things, like open jars and get irritated along with me at the mail-order pharmacy and defer to my preferences when picking restaurants or TV shows or wall colors or baby names or pets (frequently).
- He's smart and funny and he gets my jokes and he likes my family and he drives us to see TG and Meme and he walks my dog when I really need him to.
- He's likeable. Other people really like HG. I think that's awesome.
I think he's awesome.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
My husband worked hard every day at home and at work. He lost his job and found a better one. He continued doing what he does best and what irritates me the most.
My oldest daughter turned 6 and started first grade. She learned that she can read chapter books to herself and that 2+3=5 (and other "math facts") and how to write her name in cursive. She had her first guild audition and piano recital. She picked out the newest member of our family. She started mastering the elementary backstroke (which doesn't look very elementary to me - it looks complex!). She took her first trip to Ohio, my birth state. She made butter.
My younger daughter turned 2 and learned the sound that Q makes (and a bunch of other letter sounds). She made new friends everywhere she went. Literally. Everywhere. She thought about using the potty fulltime but decided it's not for her yet. She learned to count to eleventeen, but then exceeded that and counted all the way to 20. She discovered (unexpectedly, and surprising her daddy in the process) that it is fun to go underwater in the pool.
We, as a family, got a puppy and taught him to sit. Well, maybe that was mostly me, but he lives with all of us. We weathered stressful times before Husbandguy got laid off when everyone else in his office was losing their jobs and then while he was out of work. We used our season passes to our local amusement park enough to make them worth the money, but not as much as we would have liked. We went on several trips out of state and (re)connected with old friends and/or relatives we hadn't seen in forever (or ever met in some cases). We laughed and played and cried and yelled and smiled and sang and complained and glared and colored and read and slammed doors and painted walls and broke things and fixed things and kissed and hugged and grew and learned.
It seems that this post is more about what happened around me this year. I think I'll save what happened to me for a separate post. Either it would make this post too long to address it here or it wouldn't add anything and won't be missed. We'll see...
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Being with them every day, I don't notice what a big difference there is in their skills, tastes, and knowledge from just a few months ago. Unless I take the time to notice, which I do, but not often enough. Both Pete's and Lulu's language skills have improved so much this year. Reading, writing, speaking, comprehending. My girls have always been gifted verbally (just a little bragging - forgive me), but the strides they've both made this year have amazed even me, their mom, who knows they're both geniuses. I'm so impressed by Pete that I bought her Little Women for Christmas. She's a year younger than I was when I first read it and may not think she's quite ready, but I know she can do it and want to give her the chance. They're both so much more confident in what they like and don't like. And they're able to tell me why, most of the time, if they don't like something.
They're also growing physically, obviously, and I have to make an effort to notice that, too. Pete's tall enough to ride a bunch of roller coasters and is losing the kindergarten pudge her doctor expressed concern about at her last check up. Lulu's not a toddler anymore. She's also lost some pudge - that baby fat that's so cute on teeny toddlers - and is so much more a little kid than a baby. It's adorable and beautiful and a little sad (but in a good way).
I'm sure ther are those of you who are thinking I should stop looking back and just look forward and you're half right. I should look forward too, and I do. But I like to look back. I don't dwell in the past. I relish it, and my girls enjoy when I retell it. I'm helping them build memories by talking to them about mine and about theirs. That's important. Memories matter. That's why I started blogging.
Friday, December 26, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Then she added, "Now we just need snow..."
Pete, from under the covers: Mom, I want a dog for Christmas.
MN, peeking in Pete's door: I know, sweetie. Me too. I'll tell Daddy.
MN, turning to HG who happens to be walking by: [Pete] wants a dog for Christmas, Daddy.
HG, in a flat voice, pointing to Howie: There's a dog right there. You got your wish.
MN to Pete: Did you hear Daddy?
Pete: Yeah. gigglegiggle
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Oh Jo! The mystery toe,
Hung where you can see.
Somebody waits for you
Somebody waits for you
Somebody waits for you
Somebody waits for you.
Mystering up the chimney!
Also, I forgot to mention yesterday that you have to YELL Jingle Bells with an angry sort of rhythm.
Monday, December 22, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Around the fireplace in the center of the great room trooped Lulu and Howie. Round and round. Round and round. Lulu was singing at the top of her lungs. "How much is that dog-gy in the window? How MUCH is that DOG-gy in the window? How MUCH is that DOG-gy in the window?" Howie trailed behind, accompanying her on the squirrel, "SQUEAKSQUEAKSQUEAKSQUEAK!!" It was chaos. And it was awesome!
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Friday, December 19, 2008
Lulu had just opened her "Meme present" (her words) from the snowman calendar. Today she got the little cut-out figurines you see in the picture above. She was very pleased. Then this happened:
LL: You want to see this?
LL (standing the princess and castle up facing each other and saying as the princess waddled toward the castle): The princess walked up to the castle and knocked on the door (the princess tapped on the castle - with Lulu's help). Knock, knock, knock... But nobody answered.
And there was more to the story - the story that my 2 year-old made up on the spot about her brand new toys, but I don't remember it exactly because nobody was recording it! Where can I hire a camera crew?! I hate not being able to share this stuff with other people. It's not the same when you write it down. Especially when you don't remember it exactly. I wonder how awkward it would be to carry my camera with me at every moment...
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
The performance wasn't any better or worse than last year. I don't think. I have to admit that I missed a lot of the dancing. My eyes were on the orchestra pit. The music was live! How could I not watch the musicians? Next year I'm bringing my binoculars. To watch the musicians. Ballet is so much better with live music. And there were a couple of times (don't laugh at me) when the music got all dramatic and I got all choked up (I said don't laugh at me). For real. Tears-in-my-eyes choked up. I'm
It's kind of the same when I'm playing the piano or singing. At least it used to be. When I am comfortable with a piece, the music is physical for me. It comes through me. Or out of me. The piano - keys, pedals, bench even - and the music - melody, chords, harmony & dissonance - and I aren't separate. It's weird to say I become one with the music. And it's not exactly accurate to say that because that's not what it's like. Maybe it's right to say I become one with the piano. That's still weird, but it's closer... However I describe it (and I'll think of a good description as soon as this posts), it's physical. If it's not, it feels fake and it's frustrating and not pleasurable or worth doing.
So I wish they would always have live music at the ballet. Or if they don't, I wish they would print the information about the recording they're using, at least, because I think it's important. And I hope that at some point in the near future, HG says yes (yes=shrugs his shoulders and doesn't say no), that there's enough money for me to take piano lessons again and that he and the girls will support my doing that. And in the meantime, if someone has a copy of Bach's 2-Part Invention #13 in A-minor that you could share with me, would you send it along? I have a whole book of his 3-part inventions (thank you, TG), but I think I'd like to learn that one.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Friday, December 12, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
I'll have to cancel my tour of the Montessori school that was scheduled for tomorrow. I've got time to reschedule, though, before we can even apply, and I'm actually leaning toward the non-Montessori school, based on conversations with some other parents at Pete's school (and the cost, frankly).
Okay. Husbandguy did like the gingerbread, but it was more molasses-y than gingerbread-y so I'm going to have to try again. I admit that I didn't follow the recipe, but the changes I made wouldn't have made a big enough difference for me to try that recipe again in hopes of getting a more gingery gingerbread. So, if you have a good gingerbread recipe (Moomie?) and wouldn't mind sharing it, would you post it in comments for me? If I get a chance to make it, I'll definitely tell you if HG likes yours.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Sunday, December 7, 2008
I'm making it for Husbandguy. He likes gingerbread. He almost said so when I proposed making some. He said, "That would be fine." He doesn't mean fine as in "cool" or "awesome" or "fiiiine." He means "okay." Woo-hoo. I'm inspired. Woo... Oh nevermind. I told him I wish he would be more expressive
But I'm going to make it because he does like it, even if he won't say so out loud.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
The night before last, Pete and I went to look at the stars with her class. HG and Lulu stayed home and Lulu took a bath. HG told me this story when I got home:
Lulu was calling from the bathroom* for him to come and help her. "Daddy," she said, "can you come here? I need your help." When HG got to the bathroom, Lulu was standing naked in the middle of the floor in a ½" puddle of water with the great big bucket we use to hold their bath toys on the floor next to her. The bucket was full of water. "Daddy," she said, "I need you to help me get this bucket back in the tub. I can't get it back in the tub. It's too heavy." HG said he didn't know how all the water had gotten on the floor because the bucket was full to the top. I asked him how she got the bucket full of water out of the tub in the first place. He didn't know. Silly kid. It's fun when she makes her daddy laugh.
*I want to make it clear that I do not condone leaving a 2 year-old alone in the bath. HG knows how I feel about this. And I think he may have learned his lesson...
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Lulu is guaranteed a spot at the school Pete goes to but not until she's 4. I thought it would be good for her to have a year of Montessori under her tiny little belt before then. So I started, this week, looking at Montessori schools. There are a few around here. The one Pete went to, one near where Husbandguy works now, and a couple more. I found this really amazing-sounding program with all the usual Montessori stuff - language, math, science, practical life, music, grace and courtesy - and more - cooking, nature walks, etc. It sounds like my understanding of Maria Montessori's original idea. But it's for ages 3 to 6 and there are only 15 spaces and it's really hard to get into because siblings of children already enrolled in the elementary school get priority. They do have a program for regular children, though, and it has more openings so I've made an appointment to visit.
And there's another school that's not Montessori but might be a good choice. I know several children who went/are going there, and they're all amazing little kids. Their program sounds very progressive and child-centric and definitely worth a look.
This probably isn't as interesting for you as it is for me, but there you go.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
We had a Super Nice Time at TG&MM's, like we always do. It's comfortable there. And the girls hardly fought at all; so that was a change from what has been the norm. TG&MM enjoyed having them there (see? and see here? and here?) and the feeling was mutual. HG is hard to read
Did I mention I made rolls to bring to Meme's sister's house for Thanksgiving? I didn't mention that? Oh. Well, I did and they were really good and we all had one on Saturday for a snack (4 days later) and they were still good! If only I'd followed the recipe, I could make those rolls again sometime...
Howie stayed at a kennel near here. It's the one the couple at the dog park recommended. I was a little worried about him because he got so sick when we took him away from his first family, but he did well at the kennel. They said he went outside to potty, not in his room, and he played during playtime, and when I picked him up, he was definitely healthy. And very happy to see me. And hungry and thirsty, apparently, because he wolfed down the food I put out for him and I've had to refill his water 4 times in the last 5 hours. And the cost was under $100 for 5 nights. We will definitely be leaving him there again. Honestly, I didn't miss him as much as he missed me. But don't tell him that.
Monday, December 1, 2008
- Get everyone dressed and off to school/work. (check)
- Go to the grocery store. (check)
- Go to Target for cat food and Pull Ups.
- Pick up the dog (more about that later).
- Do laundry.
It might not look like a lot, just 6 things, but Husbandguy would say that it's not getting done with me sitting here. So check back later... Or tomorrow...