Monday, July 28, 2014

Two jokes that do not fit on Twitter

Me, earlier today: "We're going to do A then B."
Tadpole: No, we're going to do B then A. That's how the world works.
Me: Nope. We're doing A first.
Tadpole: That's not how the world works. We're going to do B.
Me: I'm doing A right now. Then we'll do B.
Tadpole: OK, but that's not how the world works.

My daughter: never let facts get in the way of a good theory. So, basically, a French philosopher.

Item 2:
For the second time in the last few days, Tadpole identified a Miller Liter delivery truck as a beer truck. (It does have a realistic picture on the side after all.)
Today: Yes, and there's a wine truck too.
Me: What?
Tadpole: The red truck there!
Oh, you mean the red coke truck with the outline of a soda bottle ...

Thursday, July 24, 2014


Two brief episodes from today:
Driving home from school Tadpole mentioned that they'd read the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.
I wish I had been there with my chair. I could have fixed the baby bear's chair.
Later, still on the subject of baby bear.
It was snuggly.
Oh? Did you give the bear a hug.
No daddy. The bear was inside the book. I was outside the book.
This from the girl who hugs any page where someone is sad ...

In the bath this evening, Tadpole was collecting water & soap suds in a cup.
Look daddy, here's your coffee.
Thank you Tadpole.
Actually, it's not coffee. It's beer. Here's your vanilla beer. Do you want some?

Raising her right?

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Parenting Advice

Tadpole had a terrible time falling asleep in her crib.  Sprout really likes falling asleep in her crib.

Tadpole was great at falling asleep in car seats and strollers.  Sprout not so much.

Tadpole had trouble self soothing, Sprout figured out sucking her thumb very quickly.

Tadpole woke from naps if I moved around even a little bit.  Sprout's got the hang of getting herself back to sleep.

Sprout takes one good morning nap, then short naps later in the day.  Tadpole (once she fell asleep) could sleep a long time whenever she was tired.

I point this out because as every parent knows, lots of people like giving parenting advice.  There are books out there with parenting advice.  Some of the books are good.  Some of the advice from people is good.

Even if all advice was good and based in experience and research and things, it would run into the basic problem that kids are different.  Granted we have more experience than we did with Tadpole, but I don't think that we're the cause of all of the sleep differences above.  Kids are different.  Even good advice doesn't always apply.

That's worth keeping in mind.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Celebrating victories

After the past few days, celebrating some parenting victories seems necessary, so here goes:

Tadpole hasn't had an accident in a long time.

We took Sprout to the doctor*, and when he handed Tadpole a sticker, she said Thank You unprompted. He made a point of complimenting me and R since that's uncommon and takes work from the parent. I'll take it!

Tadpole and I went for a long walk with Sprout today. Tapole walked on the sidewalk, occassionally dashing ahead or waiting behind and running after me. When I called her back to me, she came quickly and without protest.

Tadpole sprayed water into her little pool today.

For dinner, Tadpole initially objected to pasta with sauce (Pasta should be served with oil and Parmesan, none of this barbaric sauce!), but ate it all!

We have two amazing girls. And things we have pushed for a long time regarding bathrooms, courtesy, and following directions on walks are starting to come to fruition.  Today is a good day to celebrate those victories.

Also pictures! 

* it turns out that about one in 20 babies doesn't have their tear ducts open on time. Tears flow to the wrong places, eye goop is disturbed, and the skin gets red and angry-looking. Sprout is one of the twenty, as we learned today.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Walking mommy to the sidewalk

Every weekday morning, R heads out to the train and Tadpole walks mommy to the sidewalk.  She's way too excited to stop at the threshold, but the train station is too long a walk.  So she walks mommy to the sidewalk.  I'm not allowed to leave the porch.  Bye mommy!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

All the numbers in the world

Tadpole (3): Soon I'm going to be five like [friend]

But what will you need to be first?

First I need to be four. Then I'm going to be five. Then I will be six.
Then I will be <mutters>1,2,3,4,5,6,7</mutters>Seven!


Yeah and then eight!  Then <mutters>1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9</mutters>Nine! Then ten! Then 11 and 12 and 13! I'm going to be really tall when I'm thirteen!

Yes you will kiddo.

Yeah and you know what? Then I'm going to be all the numbers!


Yeah! Even one hundred!

Mommy: yep, you might make it to one hundred.

Yes, I'm going to be one hundred and daddy we're going to need a really, really, really, really tall car when I'm one hundred!

Monday, July 7, 2014


Tadpole really likes experiments, and a few months ago we put a few flowers in water dyed with food coloring and watched the results.  Tonight, while we were looking over our garden, Tadpole grabbed a lily stem.  R suggested we put it in a vase:

Yeah and then we'll put in water and food coloring and wait and watch it grow and see the colors!

I was delayed a few minutes in following Tadpole in.  When I got inside she'd already gotten out the food coloring.

Yeah but first I got a stool and then I opened up the cabinet and I was reaching for the food coloring but then the stool was sloping and then I was floating in the ocean* but then I reached even more and I got the food coloring and then I got the stool back over and I climbed down.

Below is a picture of the corner where the food coloring is kept. I'm just glad nothing was broke. And she didn't try to get a vase down as well. 

*floating in the ocean is hanging on a counter by her elbows, with feet hanging free.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Swimming Lessons

We have a pool in town, and after a few visits it's extremely clear that Tadpole is going to get swim lessons.

I taught swim lessons all through high school and college.  To 4-8 year olds.  I taught kids with a lot less aptitude and enthusiasm than Tadpole.  I taught groups and private lessons.  I absolutely cannot teach my daughter to swim.

I still remember the sill progression.  I know the activities and lesson plans.  I could still teach swim lessons in my sleep.  I cannot teach my daughter to swim.

Tadpole goes to a Montessori program, so she (and we) have become accustomed to the notion of "giving a lesson" and "receiving a lesson".  She's good at receiving lessons at school, which I think is a combination of the natural environment and the teacher's training.  She's sometimes up for receiving a lesson at home, but pools are way to exciting.  Mommy and daddy are way to much fun. I cannot teach my daughter to swim.

So in a few weeks I, the former lifeguard and swim instructor will send my daughter off to swim lessons.  I'll disappear because kids learn better when their parents aren't around.  Someone else will teach her to blow bubbles, hum when she puts her face under the water, and hopefully guider her to the realization that moving through the water is much easier when you're horizontal.

I'm still holding out hope that sometime after the initial lessons I can teach her a few things, but I've accepted that I cannot teach my daughter to swim.  I'm just not very happy about it.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Happy Father's Day

(Oh, hi old draft.  Enjoy this late update)
Father's Day gift from Sprout (with maybe some help from mommy) - slept in her crib much of the night, didn't get restless in bed until 7:00.

Daddy we made you a mug for Father's Day.

Oh?  Do you know what day today is?

Yeah, it's Father's Day.

Is there something we say on Father's Day?

Happy Father's Day daddy!

And I could make a Father's Day card for you.

You could get crayons and scissors and paper.

"What color paper.?"

Um, I think Yellow is a good color for Father's Day.  You could get yellow paper.

<while downstairs getting yellow paper>. <to imaginary friend Elsa from Frozen>
Elsa today we're going to make a Father's Day card for daddy.