Archive for July, 2008

California, the land of goats

July 25, 2008

We’re getting ready for a cross-country flight to San Francisco, and in preparation I’ve been showing Charlie pictures of our friends Sofi, Zach, Molly, and baby Clara. We’ll be staying with them, and they have a cute blog with plenty to keep Charlie interested.

His favorite post, though, is the one about Slide Ranch. In that post, the pictures show Molly playing with goats on a spring camping trip. Somehow Molly and Clara and California have become synonymous with goats.

When I mention that we’re soon going to be flying for six (long, long) hours to California to visit Molly and Clara, he adds, “‘Goats?”

I have to hem and haw. I can’t truthfully say no. You never know, when you live with an animal-loving two-year-old, when you might run into (or go out of your way to find) some goats. However, goats were not a specific item on our agenda when making these plans a few months ago.

“Maybe,” I say. “Maybe we’ll see goats.”

That seems to satisfy him. For now.

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Nanny and Pawpaw’s house

July 25, 2008

Charlie has decided that Nanny and Pawpaw live at the center of the universe.

Every fire truck, every butterfly, every animal, every car…every thing that can go, goes to “Nanny and Pawpaw’s house.”

“Where did the doggie go?” asks Charlie.

“Maybe he went to the park. Where do you think he went?”

“Nanny and Pawpaw’s house!”

“Where did Maryn go?”

“Nanny and Pawpaw’s house!”

“Where are we going?”

“Nanny and Pawpaw’s house!”

So, Nanny and Pawpaw, we hope you enjoy all the visiting folks, vehicles, and creatures that Charlie has sent your way.

Local politics

July 25, 2008

I could never be a candidate’s wife. All the vitriol and lies would be too much. I say this because my dad, who is a fair judge and not a politician, is caught up in a local political mess that is playing itself out online and in the LaGrange paper. I live very far away and it is still too much for me. [And, no, I’m not linking to any of that crap.]

It gives me an aggravation ulcer to see how mean folks can be to my daddy, especially when I’ve heard the details of the story as it progressed and I know that the people creating all the fuss are hotheads who want to camouflage their own mistakes.

So, Daddy, hang tight. You’re like Batman in the Dark Knight (which I got to see recently in a rare movie outing). You’re the hero the city needs, the one who must make unpopular choices for the better good. Or, in this case, for the letter of the law and fair elections.

We love you!

Saying “I love you”

July 16, 2008

Charlie is very free with his hugs, his kisses, and his I-love-yous. You just prompt him, and most of the time he’ll open his arms to whoever you’ve pointed out.

“Give Daddy a hug.” Done.

“Say, ‘I love you, Nanny.” Done.

If he decides to throw himself at you, which he does frequently for his friends, you’ll get a big squeeze.

If you ask for yourself, though—“Can I have a hug?”—you’ll only get one half the time.

Which made what he said tonight even sweeter.

We were sitting on the couch watching a little “Big Bird” and getting his nebulizer treatment ready. (It’s a ten-minute-long thing, so the TV helps him stay still and relaxed.)

He laid his head on my shoulder, like he does when he’s tired. But this time, when I leaned down to look at him, he said, “I love you, Mama.”

I smiled really big.

He smiled really big.

My heart turned over in my chest.

“I love you, too, Charlie.”

Toddler logic

July 16, 2008

Premise: Toddlers are so perfectly logical that they don’t make any sense half the time.

Proof #1: Jesse told Charlie, on a recent walk through the park, “Look, there’s a chipmunk!”

Charlie then told Mama: “Mama, a chip-monkey!”

Proof #2: We’ve been working on “asking nicely.” You know, instead of screaming bloody murder and flailing red-faced on the floor.

Charlie will begin to holler, and I’ll say, “Can you ask nicely?”

“Nicely!” he says.

Proof #3: We loaded up the internet broadcast of the Gospel Connection from Magic 98.1’s live stream. Once I had it up and running, we heard Pawpaw, Nanny, and Aunt Jenna gabbing and playing the southern gospel hits.

Charlie was so excited to hear them, especially when they said hello to him on the air.

“Pawpaw! Nanny! Jenna!” he said.

“Yes,” I said. “They’re going to play you a song.”

“Old MacDonald?”

“No. A different song.”

“Itsy Bitsy Spider?”

“Umm. No. Not this time.”

“Wheels on the Bus?”

Poor kid. He was requesting all the hits he knew!

A wild and crazy summer

July 10, 2008

It’s been forever since I’ve posted, and I have many excuses. Instead of those, I’ll give you the rundown of what we’ve been up to for the last several weeks:

–Issues with daycare. They ate up every spare moment during my work week and filled my brain to its emotional capacity. One week, I had a meeting there for every single day. When I have more time, I will write about the specifics. For now, I’m just happy that Charlie is relatively settled into a new class with older kids. He’s making new friends and learning new songs and ideas. His first full day was yesterday, and it went well.

–Vacation. We had a wonderful June road trip, stopping in Baltimore, MD; High Cove, NC; Asheville, NC; Seveierville, TN; and the Shenandoah National Park. Pictures and stories to come later. Promise.

–Work. Lots of work at my office, to prepare for the aforementioned vacation, and then lots of freelance work, to pay for the aforementioned vacation.

–Acting insane. The other night very loud music blasted through our open windows, waking up Jesse, who then woke me up. It was 3:30 am, and I am not beautiful, kind, nor coherent at that hour. I saw the culprit—a car. I put on some shoes and traipsed downstairs. [WARNING: Mom, don’t read this next part. I gave myself a heart attack.] I saw a drunk Mexican man in the car, asleep. I knocked on the window. Of course he couldn’t hear me over the music. I opened the car door and shook his shoulder. (I did confirm that he was drooling and buckled in first, which in no way makes my actions less loony.) I told him to turn down the music or I would call the police. He didn’t throw a punch or pull out a gun, both of which could have happened. A fact I didn’t realize until I woke up the next morning and thought, “Man, I’m an idiot.” Instead, he drooled some more and lolled his head to the side. I called the police. They came in less than 15 minutes and the music stopped. Next time, I’ll just call the police.

–Yoga. To keep me from missing kung fu too much and to try and get my muscles back in shape for summer biking, hiking, and swimming, I signed up for a local yoga class, which I’m now attending twice a week. Can’t say I’m down with the “namaste”-spiritual side of it, but the teacher has a talent for correcting postures and allowing students to move at their own pace. I can now stay in plank-pose, which we did in kung fu, for a minute once again. Go, abdominals! And, I can also once again run a half-mile or more without keeling over from lack of oxygen. I’m not sure exactly how far I can run because I hate running, but it’s a useful skill for catching late airplanes and runaway toddlers.

–Summer. There’s, like, totally too much stuff to do in the city in the summer! I have a very long list of things like mini-golf on Governor’s Island and swimming at Lake Minnewaska, and the list doesn’t include the things Charlie and I do every week: going to the library, the playground, the pool, the park, the zoo, the store, and the laundromat. (He’s become very adept at putting wet clothes into the dryer! A very useful skill.)

With two more summer trips coming up before Labor Day and lots of lazy days in between, I don’t expect to be blogging every day. However, I will do my best to post more often since my husband and my mother say they check out cdubs “all the time.” Also, I will do my best not to attack any more drunk Mexican men at 3:30 in the morning.

Happy summer!