Monday, January 25, 2010

What's Up with Madeleine?

Some interesting tidbits about our darling little Madeleine:

At age 14 months Maddy is working on perfecting the skill of patience.

Here she is thinking, "gee, that camera looks kind of interesting."
And here she is two seconds later politely saying, "give it to me right this second please or I'm quite sure I will explode!"
Madeleine has also become a pea hoarder. Yes, you heard me correctly - she's a pea hoarder. She loves those little green morsels so entirely that when we were out to dinner the other night she would place one pea in her mouth and then stuff another pea up her sleeve. She is clearly under the impression that at any given moment a pea shortage may occur, leaving her tummy yearning for more gooey goodness. Lest you think she forgot about the peas stuffed all the way up to her armpit I'll have you know that later in the evening they became her before-bed snack.

As I was without my camera and did not capture the pea incident, I'll just show you these pictures of Madeleine sporting her new "cool" look. She can stare at herself in the mirror wearing sunglasses for hours. She feels she is is "tres chic".
Lastly, Madeleine has decided her daily hair and beauty treatments are really cramping her style. She no longer has time to loll idly on her back while I massage lotion onto her baby rolls. She needs room to twist, turn and maneuver herself away from the spa environment I've so lovingly created for her.

Both of my girls were blessed with thick hair from a very young age - no baby toupees needed in this household! However, Madeleine definitely takes the prize for the most hair seen on a 14-month-old baby. I love her little curls and all the products I bought have really been working well. The only problem? Madeleine is NOT interested in sitting still while I comb out her hair and try out new hairstyles. As of yet the only thing she has time to wait for me to put in are a couple barrettes. I just know I could do some adorable pigtails if I was given the opportunity but "Madeleine the Champion" doesn't have time for that.

In the bathtub tonight while getting her deep-conditioning treatment and comb-out she kept looking up at me and putting her hands out, effectively saying, "why are you doing this to me?" After I finally got all the curls detangled the little stinker reached up and rubbed her hands all over her head - no doubt re-tangling each spiral.

Does she look apologetic to you? But, how can you not love that little face to pieces?

Monday, January 18, 2010


Today I had a day off from school. I've had this day off every year since I was a little girl but today it meant more than just "Whoopee! I'm going shopping!" or "I'm off to a friends house!" This last week I've truly been thinking about Martin Luther King, Jr., the Civil Rights Movement and all those who were involved in making our country a better and more equal place to live.

If it hadn't been for Dr. King maybe I wouldn't have the family I have now. Even if I did, maybe we wouldn't be welcome in some of our favorite restaurants or maybe my girls wouldn't be allowed to go to the same schools as their friends or do the same activities. These are thoughts I cannot fathom and if I'm being honest, can't stand to think about.

Every year I talk about Martin Luther King, Jr. to my kindergarten class. I always feel this is an important discussion but part of me also feels as though I'm the one to burst their Utopian bubble. Of course they notice the different skin colors of their friends but it makes about as much difference to them as the different hair or eye colors in our class. The idea that at one time Bobby had to use a different drinking fountain than Billy is completely foreign to them.

Usually teachers love for their students to ask "why?" and question new thoughts or ideas. During this talk though I silently plead for them not to ask "why?" because I honestly don't know how to answer the question as to why people were segregated in the first place. Why one color was perceived to be better than another. Why discrimination was allowed to go on for so long. Why there is still tolerance for inequality in the world.

Luckily with five-year-olds I'm able to talk in more general terms about how Martin Luther King, Jr. wanted everyone to get along and be kind to one another. I talk about his 1964 Nobel Peace Prize win and how they can be like Dr. King by using their words when having a disagreement with a friend (at this point there's always an eye roll or two as wrestling and fisticuffs are definitely the preferred mode of problem-solving with some of my sweeties).

As an aside, this year when I brought up the Nobel Peace Prize several of my smartie pants students knew President Obama was awarded this prize as well. One student was quick to pipe up with, "well, you know, George W. Bush did not win that because he didn't deserve it!" I definitely had to bite my lip to keep from laughing at that comment!

So today I am grateful for Martin Luther King, Jr. because he helped make it possible for my children to be treated fairly and with the same respect every person deserves. Thank you Dr. King!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Elusive Nosepicker and Other Tales

For several weeks Isabelle has been talking about nosepickers. Yes, I am making it one word and sorry, I know you're totally grossed out - I was too! During play time it was all about nosepickers. She saw one in her bedroom, there were a couple down the street, they were outside in the woods, and on, and on. She would even go up to Madeleine and say, "How ya' doin' there you little nosepicker?" (As a quick aside Isabelle also has many other names for Maddy including: little potato, little freckle and little pickle. She uses all these names lovingly and it is apparently a private joke between the two of them.)

Anyway, back to nosepickers. I finally couldn't take any further talk that conjured disgusting images in my head and finally asked Isabelle to explain what she was talking about. She of course looked at me like I was crazy and said, "You know Mom! Those birdies that pick trees? The nosepickers!"

And then it became clear - she had been obsessing about woodpeckers. What a relief!
In other news Madeleine has been working hard at building her vocabulary. She now knows how to say Mama, Dada, Pop and tree. She loved our Christmas tree and now sits forlornly in the corner where it stood, holding her hands up with longing repeating, "Tree! Tree! Tree!" over and over again. She also loves our cats and has perfected the word "kit" (short for kitty). Incidentally she is also adept at the shhh sound and quite frequently (and accidentally) pairs that sound with the end of "kit" getting....well, you know what word comes out.

My potty-mouth girl says,"I know I'm crazy!...
"...but I'm also brilliant!"
Watch out for this dynamic duo!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Ringing in a New Decade!

The girls were ready to party all night New Year's Eve at my friend Erica's house. Isabelle made it to midnight but Madeleine couldn't do more than stay up an hour past her bedtime. We had a great time eating good food (chocolate fondue anyone?) and drinking great drinks.

After our pre-party dance showdown at home it was time to get this party started!
Madeleine: "No time for pictures Mom - we've gotta roll!"
The kids took turns playing Disney "Sing It!" (Karaoke) in the play room. After the crowd cleared Isabelle and her friend Laney took to the dance floor while Robbie sang for them.
When the rest of the boys came in Isabelle was way into watching the car racing.
With an hour until Midnight Erica passed out the New Year's accessories. Just imagine the noise!
Daddy took a break...
...until he was ganged up on.
Getting ready with holiday crackers and champagne.
Isabelle and I shared a cracker and found marbles as our prize.
Happy New Year!!!