At the farmers' market this past Tuesday, spotted some familiar looking...didn't know it was fruit, but looked like the stuff growing on our neighbors' tree that overhangs our backyard. The stuff rots on the ground and goes to waste. Come to find out, they're called loquats, and they're $3 a pound right now in season at the market, or FREE at my house. They taste a little bit like apricots crossed with persimmons. I ate quite a bit of them yesterday, sitting outside in the sunshine while Lauren played on her Plasma Car. If anyone wants loquats, come to my house!
Yesterday when I told Lauren she had to take a nap, she didn't want to go and gave me a list of things she'd rather be doing and excuses for not lying down. Then she said "I don't want to be little!"
I got a kick out of that one, but even funnier was what she said a few days ago. I was driving her someplace and I said "Hey Booin..." (one of my nicknames for her) and she replied, "Mom, don't call me Booin! My name is Lauren!". I was really surprised and began apologizing- "I had no idea you didn't like to be called Booin. I'm sorry." Then she burst into laughter and said "Mommy, I'm TEASING you!"
She also likes to say, when I leave and tell her I'll be back, "you will miss me!"
I tend not to be too excited about seeing celebrities but the past month, I've had two really cool sightings. A few weeks ago, I saw Al Bundy on my street (he was coming from the playhouse with some buddies and he did that "hey what's up"nod of the head, which I think celebrities do when someone on the street glances at them, because sometimes subconsciously for that first few seconds, you are thinking "where do I know him from?". As your brain is processing the information, they don't want you to voice the words and have an unnecessary interaction with them when they're just trying to get on about their day. So, they do the "hey buddy" sort of nod of the head. The same kind of acknowledgment you'd give someone you knew very casually.
Anyway, so I got the celebrity head nod from Al Bundy last week and I saw Ron Livingston at lunch today. He was even better looking in person than he is in Office Space. He looked really, really good. Flawless features, great hair, seemed like a nice person (or at least did not have any tantrums in public like a certain person we shall get to in moments!). And, we were at a vegan restaurant so good karma, too! Be still my heart!
Oh, and the poor guy was just having lunch with a friend at the next table and had to put up with...no, not people swarming him for autographs, we were all subtle and didn't bother him or otherwise interact...the guy (and everyone else around)had to put up with Lauren crying and saying "I want my nap NOW!!!!!!" So Ron, if you ever google yourself and find this blog entry, I want to apologize on my toddler's behalf, and hope the brief encounter does not sour you on having children in the future and passing along your stunningly handsome good looks to the gene pool. :)
A lot of times, with parenting, I feel like I'm winging things. I really don't have a lot of set in stone policies, and I'm not dogmatic about one approach or behaviorist's ideas. And my attitude is "I do it this way, you do it your way, our kids will all turn out fine." So in my 2.1 years of this, I've only come up with one concept I'd feel 100% okay sharing as the "good way to do things" that other people should follow. And it's not family bed vs. crib or cloth vs. disposable diapers or spanking vs. timeouts or no TV vs. educational programming or any of those other biggees. I make certain choices but I don't really care what other people do or think it matters much in the end.
So what is my big idea that I do think everyone should do? The concept of saying good-bye to things at the store. When we go shopping, Lauren is not allowed to have something just by asking for it, but she can carry something around with her while we shop, but then before we leave then she has to say good-bye to it and we put it back on the shelf. No matter what, we don't buy it if it was her idea to get something. I don't mean we never buy her things (a look around my house at the giant multiplying toy collection attests to that!) but that it's not ever on the spot when she asks for things.
I know, she is only 2 and this might not work forever, but for now, it is so nice not to have her do any tantrums in the store, and for me to feel a bit in control of the situation. Have you ever seen those parents bargaining with their kids? "No, Maddie, you can't have that. Put it back. Well, okay, fine. But only one. Pick which one. Okay, fine, both of them, put them in the cart."
What we do instead is give her choices of things we were going to buy anyway, such as "do you want the blue sippy cup or the yellow one?" and items at the grocery store ("which bananas look the best?") and we let her carry something around. Say, she'll spot an Elmo at the store and get excited about it. We say "would you like to carry Elmo around while we shop?" and she does, but then before we leave we say "okay, say good-bye to Elmo now" and put him back on the shelf. It works surprisingly well. If other parents would try this, maybe we'd all have a more pleasant shopping experience. Think about it the next time you're at Target and hear someone have a tantrum...
Today for the 3rd time, Bernard Parks' autodialer called me. Interestingly, I'm not even in his district (South Central Los Angeles). The oh-so-helpful message was that postage rates had increased and he wanted me to be aware that I could purchase Forever Stamps next time, to avoid the increase. What, he works for the postal system now? He should work for the phone company instead, then he wouldn't call three times to the same household. And at the end of the message, of course, he wanted my vote in his election for L.A. County Board of Supervisors.
Frankly, anyone who comes across as that idiotic doesn't get my vote. If I was even in his district, and I even cared about postal rate hikes, he should have contacted me (once) before the rate hikes. But then, I was telling someone (who shall remain anonymous unless she chooses to post a comment here outing herself) about the call, and she said "what, postal rates went up? Why didn't anyone tell us? I've been using the same stamps all week!" So, maybe he was helpful after all.
The past few days, Lauren's been saying "something different", as in "I want to eat something different", "Let's play something different", "Let's go someplace different". Lately, she's been looking through her toys and reaching for the high ones on the top shelf that haven't been played with. Today she asked for a box of Legos ("Mama, play with me! Play with the pony playground!"). Instead of baths, she likes to take showers. And she can climb out of the bathtub herself. ("I do it myself!") Today she washed her own hands proudly("myself!") for about 20 minutes.
She's getting better about sharing. This weekend, she played at Alexa's house and later she talked about "nice, pretty Suzy", that "nice man, Alex" and "my best buddy Alexa, she's a good friend". Alexa shared toys with Lauren very nicely, so Lauren agreed to reciprocate next time Alexa comes over. Lauren has now named two dolls in her honor, but she's decided to name the smaller one "Alexa Dorothy" so she doesn't get them mixed up.
She loves to run around and has become much more coordinated this month. She likes to "help" and I give her tasks and missions. She will take a Diet Coke to Daddy, or get me a towel while I'm in the shower, or painstakingly fill Jake's dogfood bowl 3 kernels at a time. She badly wants to feed Pacoo the fish, but I won't let her because she'd dump in too much (and too often!). She still likes to bring toys to Jake, shoving them into the bars of his kennel, so I just know she'd want to drop things into Pacoo's bowl "for him to play with". He's kept out of reach.
She still loves to read, and Arthur books are her favorite these days. She likes not just to read the books but to point to everything in the pictures and describe them. "Arthur's mommy. Pal the dog. I love Pal! He's a good dawg". But at night when she's getting ready for bed, she always asks for either "Mommy born", " 'phia story", or "Lauren born", etc. She invents excuses to try to get out of bed. Usually feigns thirst or hunger, but I've been setting sippy cups of milk by the bed in advance or offering to send D-Daddy-O downstairs to get things and she always replies with "I come. Carries!" "Carries" is another word she made up that means "carry me, please!". (Two other made up words: "passo" for pacifier and "milk-oo0000-bah" for really delicious milk) So if she says that, we know she is just stalling. She also says "carries" when she doesn't want to be in the "strolloo".
A not so cute trait-she still likes/needs/requires to twirl my hair if she gets upset or has trouble falling asleep. Her increased strength means she pulls out more of it and it HURTS! I tried to have a talk with her about but her response was ""I love haiw. Ooooh, haiw. Haiwy Mama!". So she doesn't really prononce her "r"s. She calls herself "Lawyen".
She watches so much Elmo (every night Ryan watches a DVD with her when he gets home) that she's developing a really strong New York accent. She says "Jakey's a good DAWG. I love DAWGS. DAWGIES are my fwends."
She likes to order me around- "you will read!"- and then I arch one eybrow and she adds "please! pleasey pleasey please!" There's been some drama lately around here about a spot that opened up for her at the daycare at my office, but then my department is not ready for me to work the full 40 hours a week again so we had to let it go (but still on the waitlist for later). She overheard me talking about it and she told me "Mama, I'm your boss. You work here. You will stay. You Papa's boss!" and also "I no like Bo". Bo is my boss, who is very sweet to Lauren and note, I have never said anything bad about my boss! Lauren just doesn't like the idea of me having a boss!
Frequently tired mother to a happy 7 year old daughter and 2 year old son. Wife to a worthsmith who argues for a living. Employee to a really cool un-Lumberg boss at a large Office-space-esque institution of higher learning. Currently stationed at home, working from my laptop. Condo dweller in the heart of screenland who misses NY & snow.