Thursday, November 30, 2006

Stop the Presses!

The Min used the potty. Tonight. By herself. Before her bath.

(I never thought I'd be so excited about another creature's elimination habits, but that's just part of motherhood I guess.)

Ducks and penguins and lizards, oh my!

Today is November 30 and it is 70 degrees out! 70 degrees!
So Margot and I went to the zoo with her friend Esmee and her mom.

They're cute together, aren't they?

Margot liked the monkeys a lot (they elicited exclamations of "Curious George!" and "Monkey George!") but was also interested in the waterfowl (you know, because ducks are wild and rare animals).

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A Dickens Christmas

This morning Margot and I did a little Christmas shopping at the downtown Philadelphia Macy's, which is housed in a beautiful old building with two gigantic atriums. Everything was draped with twinkling white lights and Christmas trees (let's face it, the store has probably been decorated since Halloween) and we even caught a light-show/singalong with Frosty and Santa.

Margot enjoyed the lightshow immensely, so I thought we'd also visit the Dickens Village (a special exhibit housed on the third floor). The Dickens Village is a retelling of A Christmas Carol, complete with 19th century-looking lifesize dolls that move. It was very dark, and included a cemetary scene with Jacob Marley, the warmth of life at the Cratchit's house, and many gnarled images of Scrooge.

I didn't have a camera with me, but Margot was horrified. Remember her visit to the petting zoo? It was a lot like that.

Margot tried to be brave but she sucked her thumb so hard with fright I should check to see if she still has a fingernail. Babi got the life squeezed out of his stuffed little body. The exhibit wove through different rooms so there was no way to exit without viewing the entire exhibit. At the end, a live character dressed as 'the spirit of Christmas present' greeted the visitors, and that's when Margot lost it. I could hardly blame her - "The Spirit of Christmas Present" was a huge man with brown curls and a brown curly beard dressed in a Santa Suit. He had a wreath of eucalyptus on his head and solid black boots. Just like this guy.

I hope this doesn't make her eternally afraid of Santa Claus.

Indian Summer

Margot and I are enjoying these final days of warmth before the winter cold front comes through this weekend.

Enjoy these days without a coat, kiddo, because next week I'll make you wear the dreaded hat.

Computer Skills

I can't believe that I didn't use a computer with a mouse until my freshman year of college, and Margot is already clicking away at the public library.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Thanksgiving 2006

Thanksgiving 2006 was a quiet day spent at Grandma and Grandpa Daileader's house in Sherwood, MD. The Sherwood forest behind the house was really more like the Sherwood swamp, as a heavy rain kept us confined to the house for most of our visit. Brodie and I took the annual Thanksgiving walk sans my brother Tim (he stayed in NY), Portia (I didn't want her wet and smelly) and Margot (she doesn't have proper rain gear) wearing knee high Wellington boots borrowed from Gamma and Gampa.

But Margot enjoyed her turkey and cranberries, as well as a little old-fashioned green bean casserole. And she loved being the center of attention as 'Gamma' and "Gampa' attended to her every whim.

Mommy Daddy Happy!

I've been woefully behind in posting, so tonight's post will be a hodgepodge of bits to get you all caught up (no photos, though, I've also been woefully behind in my 'picture-taking' [as Margot calls it]).

About ten days ago, Margot kept repeating, "Mommy, Daddy, happy! Mommy, Daddy, happy!" "Wow," I thought. Not only is that a profound realization on her part, but it means that Brodie and I must really be projecting joy out into the world (not typical of our personalities). Have I been smiling more? Maybe staying at home is really agreeing with me. Is grad school really that enjoyable for Brodie? Will I have to give away all of my Morrissey/Smiths CDs?

For several days Margot kept it up, and I basked in the knowledge that Brodie and I were great parents providing a secure and positive environment for our child.

Then I realized that Margot was repeating a phrase from her current favorite book, The Potty Book [for Girls]. After the book's heroine Hannah successfully uses the potty and tosses her diapers, the narrative reads, "Mommy and Daddy are happy, and I feel proud of me." (Or something to that effect.)

So it's not Brodie and I who are happy, but a fictional Mommy and Daddy. It figures. Oh well, at least I can keep my Smiths CDs.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Miss Manners

Margot possesses a frat boy's ability to burp, and can really let them rip from time to time.

"Excuse me, Mommy," I prompt her whenever she burps. She understands, and repeats this nicety mostly without prompting these days.

However, she's mangled the phrase a bit. "Buuuuurrrrrppppp." Ah, a satisfying end to a tall sippy cup of apple juice. Margot looks up to see if I am waiting for her social correction.

And then: "So sue me, Mommy."

Well, close enough I guess.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Au Naturel

I suppose it was only a matter of time.

About 30 minutes after I put Margot to bed tonight, I could hear her rustling around in her crib. I opened the door and turned the lights on a little (she has a dimmer in her room).

Margot was playing with her animals/dolls and she was stark naked. No 'nammies (her word for pajamas) and no diaper.

I know this is normal toddler behavior, of course, but it's still pretty funny. Actually, it's funny because her sheets and bed were still dry; if they were soaked, I probably wouldn't have laughed as much.

I suggested she get dressed again and she readily agreed (it's chilly tonight, she needs those 'nammies.) I haven't been back up to check if she's dressed, but I'll peek in before I go to sleep.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Selective Hearing

I really think that Margot has developed 'selective hearing.' (She might have learned this from Brodie.)

An example: I'm talking on the phone with a friend this morning, something that Margot just cannot stand (since I'm not paying full attention to her). In my peripheral vision, I see her pick up her plastic bowl of Cheerios and start to drop them in a trail from the living room into the kitchen. Portia followed her, gobbling up the Cheerios from the floor, which makes Margot giggle. She continued to drop them one or two at a time, twisting and turning a trail for Portia to follow, until the entire bowl was gone.

I finish my phone conversation, hang up, and ask, "Margot, what happened to all the Cheerios"?

Margot just gives me a blank look. "Huh?" (I know this is a question she can understand. It's a question she can ask for goodness sakes!)

I repeat, "What happened to your Cheerios?"

More blank stares. She turns and walks away (no doubt hiding a grin).

I feel my parental control rapidly slipping away. (I really didn't think this phenomenon would develop until she was 11 or 12.)

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Banned Books (Not in this house!)

This photo was not staged! I promise that.