Archive for September, 2006

But the pants match the shirt, Mama

Friday, September 22nd, 2006

I put Reid into a new, fall outfit this morning. There were flowers on the shirt and jeans and that was how we “sold” them. I choose two “ensembles” each day and Reid chooses. Sometimes she chooses the top from one and the bottom from another but I’ve learned to offer only options that mix and match. Supposedly, choosing her clothing helps to make her a more moral kid person or at least able to recognize that she can make choice rather than just following the crowd. So, anyway, she has new jeans on and she looks cute. Except for the plumber’s but that soon becomes apparent. Now, I know that the look is trendy but it’s not great for a two year old. Since we were late, I hiked the pants up and put her in the car. Ken says at daycare the pants were practically falling down so he had to change her. Did I mention we were late? Well, he didn’t say anything but I can’t see how he could make up any time while changing her pants but … So, we’ll feed her lots and lots to get her fattened up to wear the pants before she outgrows the matching shirt.

A visit from Saint Donald

Friday, September 22nd, 2006

Donald came for supper last night. Here’s is what I imagined happening when I invited him: A young, university man comes to dine with his aunt who has made his favourite meal and his charming little cousin gives him non-stop positive attention because she likes him a lot. After supper, the three go to the backyard (or maybe the park) to play and finally the aunt and cousin drive him home, stopping to run any errands that are difficult for a guy to do on the bus.

Here’s what happened: I got home late from work because I had a meeting in the west end of the city that started at 4:00 which is when I usually finish work for the day at my office downtown which is 20 minutes closer to town. As far as I could tell, Reid was giving Donald positive attention. I nursed Reid and chatted with Donald. She is such an acrobat when she nurses that she provided entertainement and we had a nice visit – so far so good, I think, despite being late. Well, I’m late and tired so I propose a restaurant meal. I can rationalize that – a university student can’t eat out that often. We get to the restaurant and Donald commits a horrible crime (don’t know what, Reid doesn’t have the words to describe it) and the waitress (the witch) says to Reid in a stern voice with an ugly look on her face, “you can’t yell, little girl, my customers are trying to enjoy their meals.” Reid had been crying and saying, “No, Donald” no more than 2 minutes. We left. She cried on the way home because she was still trying to tell me what the crime was Donald had committed and how to fix it – I think he sat in the chair she wanted and she wanted to go back, sit in that chair and have supper. So, then we ordered Chinese food and ate a picnic on a blanket in the living room. Reid was nice to Donald (Donald is always nice to Reid) and gave him a kiss and hug when he left to take the bus home. I’d forgotten we have only one car (duh :+) and Ken needed it to go to the museum.

The crazy thing is that I think Donald will come again! Maybe it’s not saintly but it sure is good that he stayed through the tough part of the evening.

Book review – Potty books

Friday, September 22nd, 2006

I have an anti-review that I should probably share as we have a bookthat drives Ken nutty and I’m not as keen as I was at first. The book in question is “Where’s the poop?” by Julie Markes – The illustrations are beautiful. You see tigers, elephants, kangaroos, monkeys, penguins, etc. in their natural habits and each has a mother or father and a child animal. The parent asks the child if they pooped and the child always has and then the reader needs to find it. There are three flaps per page and the two “wrong” flaps have something interesting, like a bird under the mama elephant’s ear, but the poop is always in the lower right corner. It didn’t take long for Reid to figure out the pattern. It’s an okay book the first few times while you focus on the pictures and learn that penguin poop is pink but it looses it’s appeal. 

We also have “The Potty Book for Girls” by Alyssa Satin Capucilli – – which is better since it doesn’t have the pointless, so-called search process and it covers the mechanics, accidents, and buying big girl panties. The illustrations are funny and Hannah (the star) is a spunky character. I’ve seen a “Potty Book for Boys” at Chapters but haven’t read it as Ken already seems to have his potty routine well-established.

I picked up “Potty Poems” by Lynne Gibbs – no websiite that I could find but she has written other books – as well. It’s good, too. The illustrations are boldly-coloured and the themes of the poems are good – keeping potty close by is a good idea and using a potty with a friend keeps you from being bored, etc. There are boys and girls in this one.  

There you have it, if you need to buy a potty book for someone, you have some reader-research.

And, yes, it is amazing the number of books written about potty training there were 170 entries listed (some duplicates) on when I was searching for the name of the author of Potty Poems and it wasn’t even among them. I had to go home and look at the book. Is my generation obsessed with our kids? Seems like.

Things that make Reid angry

Thursday, September 21st, 2006

Reid had a rough couple of hours last night. A very tough, tear-filled couple of hours. There were many things that were bothering her – a lot. These things included:
* she can’t open the car door from the outside and after she pinched her hand twice, Mama brought her in the house
* she isn’t allowed to go outside without Mama or Daddy to try a third time to open the car door
* Mama ate chicken and stuffing (‘nough said :+)
* when she pulls my arm to stop me from eating I move my feet to keep me from falling and stand up to follow her
* when she pulls my arm to stop me from eating and I don’t move my feet or stand up, I fall forward and that makes her angry, too
* she can’t fit her big girl feet in the baby shoes she wore in February
* she can’t tie shoe laces by herself (but Mama can and that makes it worse)
* Mama drank tea, yes, tea!

There were other things that bugged her but I’ve blocked them from my mind or maybe they seemed more rational than the other things.

Ironically, the daycare ladies said that Reid had a good day.

After a couple of hours of great unhappiness, Reid settled down and we went downstairs where I offered her some cheese – tentatively, like feeding a wild thing – and then some peaches. As she devoured her share, I decided I’d better not eat all of mine and justly so as she ate much of my share and then moved onto strawberry tomatoes and milk. We went up for a bath and then Baby Jeckell went to sleep a bit earlier than usual.

Maybe she was hungry (though I offered her a treat as soon as I picked her up at daycare) or maybe it was that I picked her up instead of Ken. This morning she was all sweetness and light and loving her Daddy. I’m glad that he was able to take her to daycare today.

Book review – Peek-a-who

Wednesday, September 20th, 2006

Not too long ago, we picked up a copy of “Peek-a-who” by Nina Laden ( From the first time we read. It, Reid loved it. It’s fun for the grown-up, too. Each set of pages has “Peek-a” and then there is a picture on the opposite page with the centre cut out so that Reid can guess what the end of the sentence will be. There is a cow (moo), ghost (boo), lion, giraffe and gorilla (zoo), train (choo) and a mirror (you). I like the rhymes and the smile on Reid’s face as she supplies the missing word. It’s also fun to watch her get up close and personal with the beautiful toddler in the mirror.

She likes me, but only so much

Wednesday, September 20th, 2006

Yesterday morning, when I put Reid in her seat, I gave her a kiss and a hug. She told me not to kiss Ken but I did and so she wanted another kiss. But not when I opened the door behind Ken. So from the passenger side I leaned in and she said “diss cheek” and turned her head. Guess she like my kisses but only to a point.

We had supper at Melissa’s and as I was putting Reid in her seat, we were talking about going to see Daddy. “My Daddy,” Reid said. I agreed, then she said, “My Mommy.” I agreed and then Reid was repeating, “My Mommy,  my Mommy, my Nuk (milk), my Mommy”. Hmmm, I know where her love comes from.

Summer Sunday

Wednesday, September 20th, 2006

I was intent on squeezing every last gram of summer weather out of Mother Nature and so Sunday was an outside day.

Ken and Reid went to the park in the morning while I went grocery shopping. Ken reported that Reid went on each piece of equipment – maybe she knows the warm weather is ending too – including three of the four swings and chased him with sand (who knows where that came from, eh, Karin?) They were on a bit of a walk in the treed area near the park when  Reid needed to pee. He pulled down her underpants and shorts and had her squat. It didn’t work very well but that’s what happens when you’re a girl.

After lunch, Reid and I left Ken to his laundry and a nap (since we got them on Saturday and he didn’t) and went to the fall fair at Upper Canada Village. We saw horses, including a mama and baby, many cows, big and little, some mama baas, some baby baas and even a daddy baa. Reid knows the word “sheep” and will sometimes say it but she prefers to call them “baas”. She used to do the same with cows but switched to “dow” much more quickly (and when the hard “c” sounds comes will be all set). A glass of fresh pressed cider made Reid very popular with the bees – where were they when our pumpkin flowers needed them? We have hearty vines and beautiful flowers but no baby pumpkins; I’ve even tried to help nature along with a Q-tip with no success. That’s a story for another day, I guess, but if anyone has suggestions let me know.

After the horse show, we went for a ride on a barge pulled by a horse. That was a two-for-one treat. Reid got a boat ride and to watch a horse at the same time. We had a photo taken in costumes to look old fashioned. The quality of the print sucked. I may try scanning it but the result won’t be great. We finished our day looking at pigs, chickens and baby ducks – 12 of them to one mama duck as far as we could see. And, the best part, I think: we were in the barn at milking time! There were four cows to be milked and at least as many “farmers”. The one fellow asked Reid if she’d like to try and when she hesitated, he sat her on his lap and explained what was happening. I took a turn at milking – one lactating female to another :+). The cows were so toleranty! All sorts of kids and grown-ups were trying with various levels of success. The one man said that first you worked on getting the milk out of the cow and then you tried to get it in the pail. I only got as far as the first part. Reid eventually climbed off the fellow’s lap and went around to the other side and sat on a little milking stool and watched some more. She enjoyed the process much more than watching the machine milking at the Agriculture Museum that we saw a couple weeks ago. Interestingly, both museums milk at 4:00.

On our way out we stopped at the restaurant to use the bathroom. There were no paper towels and so I wiped Reid’s hands on my shorts. She insisted on washing her hands again and then wiped her hands on *her* dress. Reid needed a snack and so we stayed for tea. (I figured I should do the things Ken might not be as keen on when he wasn’t with us). Reid spied a small milk pitcher on a try of dirty dishes and wanted it. It was all I could do to convince her to wait until ours came. I put a splash of tea in her cup and let her add “just a little milk, Reid.” Well, she had most of a cup of milk poured before I could stop her. We ate our scone and fruit, or at least I ate the scone and a grape that I found hiding under the preserves bowl rim while Reid ate all of the other grapes with great gusto. She told me how yummy they were at one point but didn’t offer to share.

Then, it was time to head home to see Daddy. Reid was excited to see him and tell him about our day.

Personal dressing assistant

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Warning: I mention my underclothes in this message.

Reid has started a new part-time job as a personal dressing assistant. When I get home after they do, Reid has to come up with me while I change out of my dress before she can nurse. Ken used to unzip my dress for me but lately Reid has taken over. She likes to run the “piz”. She’ll even do me up in the morning. Last night, she decided that she should be able to undo my bra. I didn’t expect that and so was proceeding to change on my own when she started crying. Once I figured it out, I was able to put it back on and she undid it and we were able to continue our evening.

She still can’t get her own shirt off but there is hope.

Road trip to Grandmama’s

Monday, September 18th, 2006

On Saturday, we headed to Kindermusik – I wish I could say, “bright and early” but we were running a bit late as we started. Very soon after we hit the highway, we were in stop-and-go traffic. Did I mention that I was the reason we were late? Finally, we got off the highway for a couple of exits and then got back on. I don’t know if it actually saved time but at least we were moving. We were 20 minutes late for a 45 minute class and Reid had fallen asleep on the drive but she perked up and sang and did actions as soon as we arrived. I think that the summer made a big difference in her comfort level. After class, she gave Ken some cuddles and climbed into her seat with her new bag, books and instrument. The theme this session is “Milk and Cookies”. We’ll have to try some of the cookie recipes. The instrument is a rosewood xylophone that is arranged in a circle around  a base (looks a bit like a large can) with a small wooden spoon. Reid can “stir” and make some nice music.

Reid and I slept for a good chunk of the drive. I wasn’t going to sleep but it seemed to help Reid fall asleep so I made the sacrifice :+) Ken said he saw a bunch of police cars with people pulled over but I’ve never seen such a thing on Highway 7. Maybe he was hallucinating.

Arriving in Marmora, Reid woke up when the car was shut off. We walked to the cemetary to see Ken’s grandfather and we talked a bit about Grandpapa. I’m not sure what Reid understood about what was happening but then I’m often not sure what she is thinking.

We had a great visit with Grandmama. She had  all of Reid’s favourite things – meat, eggs, cheese and bread. Reid is a girl of simple tastes. Plus since it was Grandmama’s house, with Grandmama’s rules, Reid was allowed to cut her own slice of bread. Very cool if you’re two! I suggested that Reid, Grandmama and Ken go outside while I tidied up. Reid said, “No, Daddy tidy up” (which is how it goes at our house). Ken agreed to the revised plan and we ladies went out to the patio/lawn. Reid loves the backyard at Grandmama’s – there are little birdhouses in the flowerbed, a small chair at the neighbour’s to play with and a big yard to run around on (important after a 3 hour drive). This trip she found a bird bath, a chipmunk and some crows. With Ken snoozing in his chair, we decided to take Grandmama and go to the park. What a park! There was a structure that looked like a slide but it was moulded plastic and had bumps for climbing; this seemed a good idea to me since even Reid has started wanting to climb the slide.’s sloped part. There was a merry-go-round and a teeter-totter – neither of which I’ve seen in ages and they’re probably not considered safe but I stayed real close and Reid enjoyed both. At first I rode the merry-go-round but I got too dizzy. Not Reid, she is made of sterner stuff. They had the usual climbing structure with a couple of slides plus two other slides. Reid hesitated at the top of one slide and when I went to investigate she pointed and said “puddle”. I, with my poor sense of space, said, “Don’t worry, I’ll help” and sat her of the edge of the slide and out of the puddle – or maybe not since her shorts were wet when she got to the bottom :+) Grandmama bought us a popsicle to share, just the sort of thing Grandmama’s are famous for. I’m not sure if Reid had ever had a popsicle with us before. If not, I’m glad her first was banana since it’s my favourite. She has had fudgesicle-type creamy things, maybe they count as popsicles.

We left after about 4 hours and had a relatively uneventful ride – except for the potty break request at 100 km/hour. I think it’s actually easier to find a place to stop on the 401 with all its exits than on Highway 7. We stopped at Arby’s for supper (I can’t remember seeing one north of Leamington) where Reid fell in love with my strawberry shake – nothing but health food for her. After chatting instead of falling asleep for far too long, Reid gave up when I pretended to go to sleep. Again I sacrificed!

We made it home after about 12 hours, tired and happy.

One-track message

Friday, September 15th, 2006

We spoke with Grandma Joyce on the phone last night. Reid had quite a bit to say (the stars must have been aligned just right :+). When Grandma Joyce asked Reid where Daddy was, Reid stated quite firmly, “My Daddy!” When asked the where-abouts of other people, Reid stuck to her “My Daddy!” response. In Communications, we call that “staying on message” – sort of like a politician saying over and over whatever s/he wants people to remember in response to a series of questions.  Reid did the same sort of thing when Aunt Karin asked to speak to Ken the other night. I’m not sure if it’s possessiveness or just fear over what he’ll tell people about her!