Friday, December 11, 2009

Nice day for a haircut

New Hair
Originally uploaded by georgiegrrrrl
Today after school we got the crazy notion to explore one of the bazillion local hair salons (we walked past at least five on the way to the one we wanted). This is how short I asked for it to be cut last time, and finally someone took me seriously!

We all think she looks great, and if she wants to keep it this length, I think I'll have to talk her into a Flapper costume for next Halloween.

Much better

Today we employed the snowsuit and the hood of her coat instead of additional pants and itchy hat, so there was much less fussing on the way to school. The new scarf worked perfectly, keeping her face nice and covered, and keeping her legs warmer made her less upset about everything else. It also helps that the windchill is dramatically less than it was yesterday.

Live and learn. I ran into our neighbor on my way home this morning, and she said that they had trouble getting to school yesterday too (they go to the elementary school we walk past to get to our little school), so I feel less like a moron.

Yesterday as we made our way home, Gaz asked if I could pick her up today with the stroller instead of her having to walk. In light of the nap she took yesterday (and this kid hasn't had an afternoon nap, apart from days when she was really sick, for about two years) I think this is a good plan. I just hope her legs aren't so long now that her feet will be dragging!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Not entirely arctic, it turns out

Today it is cold. It's Chicago cold. There's the coldness (1 degree, according to the news this morning) and then there's the windiness. is reporting the winds now as 19mph, but I think it was a little worse this morning. It's definitely gusting somewhat harder than that at times.

I got Gaz bundled up for school--way more bundled than she likes. I explained that it's horribly cold and that this was the reason for the multiple pairs of pants and socks and the reason for the horrible itchy wool scarf that mom crocheted being put to use. All was well as we made our way down our street. There's plenty of snow for Gaz to stomp in and kick around, and this is always fun. Yesterday on our way home from school Gaz threw herself onto the sidewalk to make a sudden snow angel, much to the amusement of the lady walking just behind us down the sidewalk. Snow is our friend and so much fun to play in that I have to remind her constantly to keep walking.

Then we turn the corner.

Within seconds of being face-first into the driving wind (most of our walk is due west, right into the wind) she is hysterical. No matter how I try to explain that crying just makes her face colder, she says she can't help herself. She wails all the way to school, but at least I don't have to remind her to keep walking very often. A lady who is walking her son to school gives me this horrified look and asks me what's wrong. I explain for the first of many times this morning that this is the first time she's had to walk to school in the horrible cold and then spend the rest of the time waiting for the traffic light to change trying to cuddle my distraught girl.

We get to school and she has mostly stopped crying, but she refuses to look at any of the teachers because she doesn't want anyone to see her crying. Eventually I get her stripped of her outer layers--not the extra pants, though; she wanted to keep those on--and carry her to the bathroom. She's so upset by the cold that she clings to me for another five minutes (while ignoring her best friend, who came by expressing concern) before I talk her into a potty break and she manages to calm herself down the rest of the way. I explain what a ski mask is, and she says she would like one.

Now I've been to the thrift store where there were no ski masks, but I did find a nice soft purple scarf that at least won't be scratchy. I did find a ski mask, black of course, in a nearby shop, but I forgot my cash when I left the house. What are the odds of finding such a thing in pink and covered with flowers?

At least on the way home we'll have the wind at our backs. My poor not-quite-arctic child. She'll get used to it, but it's not going to be easy on either of us.

(Edited to add: I did find a floral polar fleece balaclava thing on Amazon, and it's now on it's way to us. I hope the new scarf will do the job until it gets here.)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

essential media

Well, any child of ours.

Now that she's four, it's time to start her on Daddy's favorite things: comic books and Star Trek.

Her first two comic books, which she picked out herself at our usual comic shop, are Super Girl #8 and Scooby-Doo #143. Super Girl was the last half of a two-parter, so it was confusing for all of us coming into a new series with nothing but half a middle and an end of a story, plus, it features Mister Mxyzptlk, which I tell you is a sheer joy to have to read to your kid over and over and over again.

Scooby-Doo was suitably Scoobish, and the first adventure in the ish took place at the White House. There was some cryptozoology bit in there too which was actually interesting and not insane. Overall, I think Gaz picked some winners. Now we just have to teach her about the virtues of mylar sleeves and acid-free cardboard. Oh, and she'll need her own box. For the moment the books are (gasp!) on the coffee table.

For Star Trek, Mark started her off yesterday on "The Enemy Within," which would not have been my first choice, but Gaz seemed to enjoy it. Now they're watching "The Corbomite Maneuver" and she's asking a million questions about every possible plot element you could imagine. It's cute if you aren't trying to actually watch the episode (for instance, if you're blogging in another room). But she really digs aliens, and the spinning cube thing was a big hit.

school and vaccines

Gaz's second week of school was marred by an evil, evil chest cold (what is it with this kid and chest colds?!). On Tuesday as we walked home, she complained that she didn't feel well, and also that she wasn't looking forward to the fire drill the next day at school. I assumed the two were related until she developed the cough and fever that evening. Friday we went to the doctor to get an official opinion on the cold and get Gaz on the list for the H1N1 vaccine, which our doctor assured us they keep getting more of, but they only do the vaccines by appointment.

This past week Gaz made it through a whole week of school again, but we had a little meltdown on Thursday. I thought the week would get easier for her as the days wore on, but I hadn't allowed for the cumulative exhaustion of each day building up quite so much. It was picturesque and memorable, and I hope next week we can completely skip any sort of tantrum. She's been insisting on an earlier bedtime this past week, so I think if we just roll our schedule back a little that will fix most of our problems. At least, I hope that works, as she refuses to nap even while sick.

This weekend we had a nice but all-too-short visit from the Grandparents Mitchell. While everyone else was out having a good time, I went to check out the free city-sponsored H1N1 vaccine clinic at a conveniently-located city college. Since I'm in the high risk group (asthma--don't get any funny ideas, youse), I thought I should take advantage of the opportunity. I was surprised to find that they had the flumist as well as the injection, so I may bypass the annoyance of dragging her down to the pediatrician's office and just take her to the next clinic day. I hope Gaz being generally healthy as a horse will qualify her for the flumist. I can't avoid the needles, but it would be nice if she could. If not, they do have a Blue Bunny ice cream vending machine in the lobby.

Friday, November 6, 2009

School Daze

Gaz has now successfully completed her first week of preschool. Best of all, we managed to survive it.

Getting to school was only an issue twice, and then only because Gaz frequently refuses to believe how cold it is outside and so refuses to put on her coat. You'd think she was a Yukon nudist or something. After I explained that we weren't leaving the house without her coat on, and if she never put on her coat she would never get to school that day, she grudgingly complied. I didn't even make her put on a hat most days (though I brought hat and mittens every day, in case she wanted them). I suppose as problems go, that's the kind you want to have. And I know in a few years that whole "if you don't obey you can't go to school" thing won't work quite so well. I'm milking it while I can.

Coming home from school is a very different animal. She really doesn't ever want to leave once she's there. Day one there was a screaming, sobbing tantrum all the way through lunch (fools that we were, we thought going out for lunch would perk her up) and all the way home, to the tune of about an hour and a half. Day two we didn't go out for lunch, and just screamed and cried all the way home. Day three I bribed her with Halloween candy. It worked much better than I expected, and she was so very compliant (and I was so wiped out) that I took her out to lunch. Day four the candy worked again, though there were tears about not getting hold the black bear. Day five I bribed her with the promise of a special treat (Dunkin' Donuts is on the way home) but she was still mopey about not being able to bring the pink floam until we started collecting a family of bright yellow maple leaves that had freshly fallen on the sidewalk. I was glad to have taken hand sanitizer with me so we didn't have icky leaf hands when we got our treat.

While at school, Gaz is apparently a joy. I have yet to hear about her having any difficulty at all, and yesterday when I stopped in to get her, the program director came up to me with Gaz's file (oh no!) to give me a printout she made of some goofy face photos of Miss Gaz (whew!). They had been taking the kids' pictures to put with letters to Santa and Gaz made a lot of silly faces. She's definitely my kid! So we've got bonus pictures. I love 'em. We've also got school pictures coming up soon. I'm excited to see how this goes.

In other school-related news, Gaz and I journeyed forth to River Forest last week to entertain enlighten some psychology students as to the workings of a four-year-old girl's mind. She said a lot of things that made my little nerd heart glow with pride ("What do you want to be when you grow up?" "A Transformer! Or a fairy that transforms into a scientist!") and some that made me groan a bit ("What animal would you like to be?" "I would like to be a pig, because pigs don't have to poop in the potty."). It turns out that that pig comment, according to the professor, represents thinking on a higher level than most four-year-olds, though, so I guess that's a win. What a way to prove your mental prowess! Gaz was a champ with the interviewing, and even wrote her name on the board (and I quote: "AGAAAA"). We had a good time and want to thank Auntie Abby again for inviting us out to her class. :)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

On Friday we went to the community Halloween party at Welles Park, where Gaz had oodles of fun playing games, winning prizes, and, most importantly, starting her candy collection for the year. She was not disappointed! She even ate most of the apple they gave her for breakfast this morning.

Today she woke up late and wanted to go trick-or-treating immediately. We delayed with meals and art projects as long as humanly possible, then got her dudded up to hit the shops in Lincoln Square. We didn't notice any trick-or-treaters out in our neighborhood, and I figured the safest place to take candy from strangers would be at easily-sued places of business. It turned out to be everyone's good idea to stroll the avenue and collect candy there, and Mom even got to duck away for a bit and have some coffee while Dad and Gaz concentrated on the serious business of sugar acquisition.

This year's obscure costume (Thorn from Scooby-Doo and the Witch's Ghost,, if you'll recall) was actually recognized by one lady, who even sang a bit of the Hex Girls song! So if you're ever in Lincoln Square, throw some money at Hanger 18, and tell them it's because someone behind the counter there recognized the costume. :)

We're doling out the treats very conservatively. Can't start down the cavity path when we've had such wonderful dentist visits so far.

The other big news is that Gaz finally starts preschool on Monday. She's been moodier than usual lately, and I expect this to continue until she's settled into her new schedule. For now, she's excited but nervous. I think she'll do fine after this adjustment period. Waiting an extra two weeks for things to get started didn't help, I'm sure, but it's a brand new program and they needed a little more time to get things ready.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Creativity and Questionable Influences

Yesterday, Gaz said a number of things that had me laughing and/or scratching my head.

First, she had a little plastic Stitch (you know, from Lilo and Stitch) who had been playing with her little plastic Sue (you know, the big ass T-Rex at the Field Museum). She brought both of them over to talk with me, and upon seeing the numbers on my keyboard, Stitch remarked "I can't count all the way up to zero because my nose isn't as good as T-Rex's." I still don't know what that's supposed to mean, but if I had to guess, I'd say it's a mixed metaphor.

Then at bedtime I heard some singing coming from what I thought was a sleeping Gaz. It turns out she was singing "Hush Little Baby" to Stitch, only she made up some new words. I listened quietly as she quietly sang:
"Hush little baby, don't say a word
Mama's gonna buy you a mocking bird
And if that mockingbird don't sing
Mama's gonna buy you a diamond ring
And if that diamond ring turns brass
Mama's gonna buy you a looking glass
And if that looking glass gets broke
Mama's gonna buy you a lollypop
And if that lollypop makes you sick
Mama's gonna buy you a poke in the eye
And if that poke in the eye starts to hurt
Mama's gonna buy you a billy goat. . ."
Somehow I managed not to howl with laughter during her performance. I checked with her this afternoon (in the presence of Auntie Aaaiiieeeee), and Gaz confirmed that she had indeed sung about the lollypop and the eye poke. We were both amused and confused.

At dinner she sang again, this time with Mark listening in, and he confessed that the poke in the eye thing was his fault. No one can remember all the original words to the song, so he made some up a couple of weeks ago when he was on bedtime duty. Lucky for us all, that's the line that stuck. The lollypop one was all hers, though, and at dinner she also created some more verses based on items found on the dinner table. My favorite was ketchup, but I can no longer remember what the ketchup was supposed to do. That is probably for the best.

I haven't taken pictures of Gaz in her full Thorn get-up, but stay tuned. There's a nice black and red wig involved now, and as soon as I figure out how to restrain all the blond hair, she will look so much like a goth rock chick, you won't recognize her. Unless you've watched that Scooby-Doo movie as much as we have.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mark it on the calendar

This evening, Gaz has been reading. A whole pile of animal names, a few verbs, and even an article. Tonight in addition to reading *to* her, we're going to try having her read a bit to us in one of her "pre-reader" books. I think she's technically read other words before now, but I didn't make a note anywhere as to what she read or when, so I could be misremembering. But I'm pretty sure she read something while we were out in recent days.

All was well until she tried to write the letter K. But we've got a plan to get up early in the morning and work on that.

Five days remain until she starts Pre-K. She's very antsy for the schooling to commence. I hope her enthusiasm continues!

Monday, October 5, 2009

I know, I know

It's been AGES! And I have no good excuse now that we're all reasonably healthy. I still have this nagging cough, but that's nothing a little Delsym can't handle.

So what's up with us? First, let me direct you to the Flicker link o'er yonder, which I have just this second updated to go to the set for this Gaz year. Whee! There's not a whole lot there yet (we left our battery down in Evansville during the last trip), but there's her birthday party and assorted madness.

Gaz has been feeling fine, but unfortunately her follow-up urinalysis showed bacteria again. We pumped her full of antibiotics before she had a chance to get really sick again (woohoo!) but it looks like she has some imaging tests in her future. We're just waiting on word from the doctor as to when she wants them done. In the meantime, we've got a little collection of empty specimen jars to facilitate the process of keeping tabs on how much bacteria she's growing. On the up side, she's back in the land of the toilet trained and has been having no problems remembering to get to the bathroom in time. We've had only one nighttime accident (apart from the one when she was sick, which doesn't count IMO), and she's quite pleased with herself over her progress.

School has started through MidWestWorld, but we languish on waiting lists. Things may be looking up, though, so Gaz might yet make it into preschool this year. Keep your fingers crossed.

Let's see. . . Gaz can write her name, though she sometimes gets the letters out of order or runs out of space on the page with her giant letters. We do a lot of pre-reading workbook activities, and she follows directions from books much better than she does for me (isn't that always the way?). She's covered in stickers that didn't come off in the bath as well as I had hoped. Which is to say that some of the picture parts came off, but the sticky stuff lingers and is covered with fuzz from her blanket.

This weekend we went to the Milwaukee Art Museum and discovered that she doesn't like art, because it's boring. She did like watching the "wings" close on the building and the little markers and watercolors I got her at the gift shop, though. She was mildly impressed with her first visit to The Safe House. I expect that will change as she gets older.

So that's the general update. More news as it happens (and I remember to blog).

Monday, August 17, 2009

Family Bleh

Just after my last post I came down with a raging sinus infection. Just as I got in to the doctor and got myself squared away for some casual recouperation, Gaz got sick. Not just a little sniffle, there were 104-degree temperatures and hallucinations at one point.

So there was an ER visit (we like the nearby hospital) and a visit to our normal doctor's office, and many lab tests and phone calls later we find out that Gaz has a urinary tract infection and we get her her own prescription for a bit of amoxicillin. So much for that casual recouperation.

Since Wednesday we've had fevers, chills, vomiting, and tantrums over taking any sort of oral medication. Even the easy to chew stuff that tastes like Smarties. I've gotten little sleep, but at least my medicine has taken care of my infection just as well as it's working on hers. She's already looking a lot better (though still vomiting every now and again) and acting more like herself. We're back to diapers for the moment because she's having a hard time being awake/energetic enough to get to the bathroom in time for anything, but I know she would like nothing more than to get back to normal.

And we will, but it's probably going to take a little while yet.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Birthday and groveling

Gaz is now four and seems to be loving it. I think she hit the annual growth spurt early this year, so she's been a bit grumpier than usual and a bit more ravenous. Her appetite has returned to normal, but she's still a little more whiney than normal. I'm hoping that will be decreasing any minute now.

We had the birthday party on August 1st out in the park near our house. We had a few kids attend, and everyone seemed to have a good time. Gaz requested a red velvet cake decorated with a rainbow and sprinkles, and that's what I made. She even helped with the sprinkles and the rainbow, but mostly she ate sprinkles and begged for icing.

By now you're probably wondering where the pictures of this merry event are. It turns out that after years of playing with the camera, she's finally figured out how to delete every single picture from the camera all at once. You can imagine my glee. Now I don't have a picture of her from her birthday morning, etc. etc. Fortunately for you all, the party was documented by the fabulous Auntie Darci, so you all will get to see pictures that are probably a lot nicer than I would have taken with my crappy old one that sometimes like to zoom all the way in for no good reason.

Anyway, the birthday was had, the presents were all deemed acceptable by Her Majesty, and cake and ice cream were shared by all. We had a fine time, despite the incredible winds that threatened to blow food and everything into the river.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

probably way too much information

Gaz has her first Barbie. She's stripping her as I type, of course. I don't think we've got a clothed doll in the house. And already she's planning Barbie's first haircut ("Your hair is too long! It goes all the way to your butt!")

This is a good thing: An evil sorceress put a spell on Barbie so that she could only be released from her cardboard and plastic prison if a certain girl pooped in the potty. It only took months for this fairy tale to reach its conclusion.

But actually the doll was not the prime motivator. She kept asking for a diaper and we told her that she could have one if she sat on the toilet for ten minutes. I guess all it took was a little conveniently timed boredom.

I'm unbelievably excited at the prospect of not having to change diapers much longer. It's about damn time.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Baby's First Big Girl Haircut

Originally uploaded by georgiegrrrrl
By which I mean, the first haircut done by a professional.

Gaz was a total champ the whole time, even though we had a bit of a wait for her turn to come around. She was reasonably compliant with all the "hold your head this way" and "okay, don't move" business, and now she looks (as you can see) fabulous! She got some new headbands as a treat, as they are the one hair taming device she actually enjoys wearing.

I have my fingers crossed that this will help make this summer a bit less unbearable for her. Now it's less of an issue that she refuses to ever consent to ponytails, even during a heat wave.

Us girls are heading down to visit my alma mater tomorrow for a girl's weekend out, so look out for pictures of the impending Hooisierification of Gaz!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

This afternoon Gaz and I were Queens of the Wild West. We wore rainbow-colored dresses and sang songs. We also saw a cloud shaped like a bunny with really lumpy skin.

We finally got around to sorting out the back porch, so we even got to do our imagining out doors, while snacking on our newly lounge-friendly porch.

Now I have to go here the one-queen band in the living room.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Gaz says

Thursday was a rainy day, so we stayed inside and amused ourselves in the usual manner (tea parties and various excuses to move all the toys from one room to another), then Gaz announced that she was going to write a speech to read to Obama.

You see, she's got a bit of an Obama obsession. I take responsibility for this, as I did make her watch the whole inauguration (well, we played with toys and I listened in, but I did take a break from toys for the big speeches and oaths), but it's really grown into something strange and wonderful inside her head. Every time she sees a magazine with him on the cover she says, "Hey Mom! There's Obama!" The other day, her alien toy didn't believe that Obama was the president

, even singing a song about how he, the alien, was president and not Obama. Gaz set him straight in the end.

Then she started asking about speeches, and why do people make speeches, and what do they say in them, and what was Obama speaking about in this or that news clip. Then, on that fabled rainy day, she asked me for a pencil because she was going to write the speech she would be reading to Obama. And so she disappeared into her room for a few minutes and emerged with a bunch of random letters on a page. I should scan it for posterity.

The best part was that she couldn't read it to any old imaginary Obama. She had to read it to Mommy pretending to be Obama. So I did my best to sound presidential and listened attentively to Gaz's speech about her favorite things, her favorite toys, and what she likes to do (play games, play with her toys, play with the kids next door, etc.).

I wish I had had the foresight to have the camcorder handy, because it was definitely a YouTube moment.

Other fun that's happened lately:

What happens when you cook a fossil? (Inspired by waking up with her knitted nautiloid this morning, she insisted we find pictures and information about nautiluses, which naturally ended up by checking out pictures of Lituites lituus. I've been trying to explain fossils lately, but we're still at the "if it's a dead animal, what happens when you cook it?" stage. Don't ask me to explain this stage. I don't get it either.

Of the Greedo key fob she found today: "He's a skeleton guy with clothes on. But he lost all his bones!" (She did not respond to questions on how he can be a skeleton guy and be missing his bones at the same time. Greedo is just so much fun to play with, I suppose.)

Many apologies for the long dry spells between posts. It's been a crazy few weeks, between disturbed sleep cycles and general random cranky three-year-oldness, but I'm trying to catch up. I'm even not ashamed of the kitchen right now! The living room on the other hand . . .

Well, one thing at a time.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Life Marches On

Originally uploaded by georgiegrrrrl
Even when I fall down on blogging chores.

We're in the midst of a whirlwind visit all over the place, but I will sit down and write a decent entry soon.

For now, enjoy the new pictures I've just uploaded to my Flickr site, featuring mostly photos from the Spirit of Vincennes Rendezvous. Check them out!

Monday, April 13, 2009

New pix and such

Hello! We're still around, starting to stir from our winter hibernation. Okay, so the winter hibernation has mostly been in my head, but we really are spending more time outdoors despite the chilly temperatures that continue to plague us.

We've just last week returned from a trip down Tennessee way, for Grandpa Great's interment. We buried his ashes in this gorgeous little cemetery, in the Montgomery family plot right next to his wife. And when I say we buried, I mean that rather literally. Since this was a small affair and a small cemetery, the minister (a distant cousin) handed out shovels and he and Mark did the hard work while the littlest ones (Evynn, Gaz, and Merynn) helped by tossing in handfuls of red Tennessee earth. It was perhaps a bit morbid, but still very sweet. If I can't manage to finagle a sea burial for myself, I would love to be buried by my grandchildren and great-grandchildren (though that's getting very much ahead of myself on several levels!)

Sadly, the pictures from the cemetery did not turn out very well at all, so I haven't uploaded those yet. I need to do some work to try to fix the weird color/exposure issues with those, but I did upload a bunch of other photos from before and during the trip.

The first part of the trip (can't do anything in order, can I?) we stopped through Evansville for a night and had an early Easter egg hunt with Nana and Pehpaw, then headed down to the Nashville area, where we spent a couple of days visiting the Sandersons and their kids: Fletcher, Lily, and Malcolm. Lily was born just a few weeks after Agatha, and they combined their unholy affection for all things pink and princessy into something truely awe-inspiring. And loud. But they had fun and little Malcolm wasn't too traumatized, I hope. (As for the adults, we all had a great time too, but we wore many fewer loud clomply play shoes and did less fighting over mermaid costumes.)

We met up with the Mitchell clan at Henry Horton State Park, down by Chapel Hill, TN. When we weren't at the aforementioned cemetery, there was a fantastic dinner at a Mexican Restaurant, and a spontaneous trip to Lynchburg for some of us legal folks to go check out the Jack Daniel distillery. While Mark, Emily, Kyle, and I were there, the kids and Grandma and Grandpa planned a show for us, with singing and some acting, and a side of ham. Gaz had a really fabulous time, considering the funeral overtones, but she is still trying to grasp mortality.

On that subject, she found a dead squirrel in the park a couple of weeks ago and had many questions about what "dead" is. This has come up enough over the past year that I'd hoped I would get a break from those questions, but no dice. I guess it's part of the deal.

Other than the above events, life here is much as it ever is. There's a lot of art projects going on, a lot of singing of strange little narratives, and a lot of toys everywhere.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Lernin' with Gaz

The Biology Lesson:
"Hawks believe in people, but they don't know what they are. Hawks think people are their food and they eat them up. And they eat their birdseed very well."
"Before I was born, I used to climb up and look out of your mouth."
"When scabs run away, they leave little pink footprints behind."

Stay tuned for more edyoocayshun!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bloggy Maintenance

As you who do not read with an RSS thingy can see, I've been fiddling with the layout. Blogger went and got all modern and the old layout wasn't cooperating with their new toys, so I decided to change everything around.

In the process, though, I lost our links, which are probably somewhere, but I'm a bit busy lately to go digging for them. So if there was a link there before that you want me to put up now, just leave me a comment.

And now, back to me doing productive things!

Monday, February 16, 2009


If you put a crazy straw in the keyhole of Gaz's bedroom door, you can use it as a lever to release the alien octopuses that eat people.

In more sane news, Gaz sends her thanks for all the nice Valentines she received. She's also been making a ton of her own, and we are now practically drowning in hearts. She's having a good time, though, so can't complain too much.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Gaz colored the bottom of her right foot with a black marker and went for a stroll all over our beige carpet. I was more than a little angry, sent her to her room without the markers, and thankfully the Atlantis cleaner thing removed the marks that I found. (I think I just found another one, but the light is strange this time of day.)

I checked on her in her room, and she was busily and cheerfully coloring me a picture (with nice, washable crayons, I might add) to help me feel better.

Then we made a pot of Montana Gold tea (which is, incidentally, the best tea in the world) and drank tea with milk from her groovy 70's plastic teacups. The cucumber sandwiches didn't go over quite as well with the Gaz, who prefers her cukes and her sammich to be prepared and served individually. I sure ate well, though.

Now she's sitting next to me, buried under all the couch pillows, sighing heavily. "I'm having a rest because it's been a hard day!"

"What was the hardest part of the day?" I ask, expecting the morning's drama to figure in somewhere, or maybe all the coloring. Or maybe even all that patience that had to be exercised while waiting for tea to brew, waiting for me to finish some phone calls I had to make. Something like that.

"Drinking all that tea today was REALLY HARD WORK, Mom." Of course.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


Oops! I forgot to post after the check-up! I ended up with some surprise editing work that ended up taking more time than I expected, which wiped me out and so forgot about blogging for a while.

The dentist is completely wonderful. I heard many tales of her awesomeness on a local mailing list, so the choice wasn't hard. Even better, it's just a short bus or train ride from our new place. There was much praise for how well we brush her teeth, and Dr. T. told Gaz that she needs to let us help her with her toothbrushing until she's eight. I'm sure she'll really love that as the years progress. Her molars are a little close together, so we can go ahead and start flossing, or at least getting used to floss, but her front teeth are nice and spacious--lots of room for the permanents. And because Gaz started cutting teeth so early, she'll probably lose her first tooth early too. Like, maybe around five. We've got time yet for that milestone.

The spot I was worried about is, thankfully, not a cavity! It is a little pit, but it's "hard as a rock" says Dr. T, so we'll watch it and make sure that area gets brushed extra well. ::insert massive sigh of relief here::

Agatha got all kinds of goodies (Dora toothbrush, SpongeBob toothpaste, a purple dental mirror of her very own, crayons with pictures of toothbrushes on them, and a little sand timer to make sure we're brushing for long enough) and I got the lecture about the Horrors of Fruit Snacks. Which are only Gaz's favorite thing in the world. Dr. T says she'd rather see us give her ice cream for a treat than any kind of gummy anything, so I guess the fruit snack issue is pretty serious. Did we even have vast quantities of fruit snacks on the market when I was a kid? We're going to have to rethink our treat plans.

I've taken the opportunity of the dentist visit to push the "spitty toothpaste." Gaz is a very stubborn creature, and it makes life easier for everyone if I find a creative way to make things seem like they're really her idea. Getting her in the bathtub? We say that we're going to take her bath for her, which plays into her competitive spirit and gets her into the tub quite cheerfully most nights. Switching toothpaste wasn't too hard given it's novelty (and it's sparkliness), but it takes some doing to get all the way through the brushing without Gaz freaking out a bit about the volume of foam generated by spitty toothpaste versus the training toothpaste she's so fond of.

Apart from teeth, not much else is going on. There's been a lot of grumpiness the past couple of weeks, so we've not been as social as I'd like. We've been painting many pictures, working on writing letters and numbers, doing all sorts of drawing and putting stickers on paper and things. Oh, and cards. Making lots of cards. I finally found my giant stapler, so I made some little books that she can decorate, and that's been lots of fun.

Yesterday we opened up the "Mummies and More" kit my mom got me a while back, and Gaz painted the pyramid bank from that. Today we're still decorating it, but we ran out of My Little Pony stickers.

Gaz stuck a big crescent-shaped sticker on her forehead yesterday and is refusing to take it off, I think because it's stuck to her eyebrows. I figure if I can get her to run around enough, the sweat will loosen it up and make it easier to yank off when she's distracted. And it's not like I have to fight with her to get her to run around.

The Scooby-Doo obsession rages on. We just discovered the Netflix movies you can watch on the computer, so our SD library has expanded greatly. At least we don't have to watch those horrible old movies with Don Knotts anymore. She's probably the only three-year-old who even knows who Don Kotts is.

Such is life around these parts. One of these days it won't be so horribly cold and we'll be able to go out and run around. Come on, spring!

Monday, February 2, 2009

And she hasn't even seen Raising Arizona yet

Today's conversation, while looking at a book about dragons:

Me: [pointing at the one dragon on the page that I've not yet been lectured on] What does this dragon eat?
Gaz: She eats sand.
Me: She eats sand?
Gaz: She eats sand from her dragon beach.
Me: Okay then.

In a few hours, we've got her first trip to the dentist. It's nearby (yay!) and kid-only (double yay!), with lots of cool and undoubtedly expensive gadgets that make check-ups faster and easier on kids. Best of all, I get to stay with her the whole time, and if she gets skittish she can have at least part of the check-up while sitting on my lap. Unfortunately, I think there's a cavity involved, but I'm still hoping it was a weird shadow or something completely innocuous. She's not in pain or anything, so at least she's in a pretty good mood, apart from not being excited to have to go do something boring like see a dentist.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

By and large, there hasn't been anything entertaining to say. She's just about three-and-a-half. She gets frustrated easily, gets overstimulated easily, throws tantrums at the drop of a hat, and generally needs plenty of work, but not of the sort that is really that much fun to read about or hear tell of over the phone. Actually, if you try to call here and have a conversation, it's likely to involve many asides to tell Gaz to "stop doing that, I said STOP DOING THAT. RIGHT NOW. I have to go." Fun! But there's an almost equal number of times when she'll insist that we make a card or paint a picture for someone, or give me a big hug and kisses all over my face and tell me she loves me.

Which is actually fun, but gets repetitive when it's written down. So here's a few little strange things that aren't about tantrums, diapers, her inability to cover her nose when she sneezes (so, so, SO sorry about your lunch, Tamara!), or even any of the glurge. I hope that in the future it won't take me a month to gather this much shareable stuff.

In amongst the usual bundles of "why" questions, Gaz has had a few weird ones that she's been asking. While out having some quality time with Mark, the subject of our wedding photo came up, and from there sprang, "Where was I before I was born?" And then she pretended to eat Mark's brains (he was carrying her on his shoulders at the time). She gets the uterus thing, and she gets the being born thing as much as she can, but she's always wondering what she was doing when Mom and Dad kissed that one day in the picture, and what was she doing when we went to Italy? Thankfully, she is not insisting on immediate, concise answers.

Gaz likes to "shave" (with a play razor and foamy soap) her face lately, so this is now a component of every bath time. I'm guessing that she'll outgrow this well before puberty, but if not I don't know how I'll break it to her that she won't be growing a beard any time soon. In true Gaz fashion, she has named her razor Captain Wookiee--formerly Mr. Wookiee, but it turns out that the razor is a girl, and she didn't want her to feel bad about being called "mister." No, she hasn't seen any Star Wars movies yet, but she has seen a documentary about the movies, which is where I think the Wookiee bit came from.

So last night she's putting foam on her face and she starts to sing: "It's your mom and your dad and they're SHAVING!" And I couldn't stop laughing. I still laugh when I think of it. It's a surreal show tune sort of song, and it's coming out of my daughter. I don't know where she gets this stuff. Shaving I get, but parents shaving and this being a song-worthy event is something I would never have considered. The songs pop up all the time and tend to involve riffing on the "you can do anyting you want to do" theme. You can jump on the bed if you want to, or you can not jump on the bed if you want to, or you can jump on the bed and then get a snack if you want to . . .

But now mama's going to go to sleep because she wants to.