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Friday, January 9, 2015

Bested by a Two Year Old

Today I was outsmarted by my two year old for the first time.  This is what I know will be the first of countless similar occurrences.  And it really was so simple...

As we walked out of the winter concert at Evelyn's daycare today (which was quite possibly the most adorable thing I have ever seen in my life!), the kids were handed little treat bags of marshmallows and chocolate chips.  The moment we were strapped in the car, Evelyn proceeded to ask for some.  After having a stomach bug earlier this week, we have been trying to stick to mild foods, but the thought of the car ride home with her begging for marshmallows wasn't very pleasant.  So I handed her a few marshmallows, hoping it would satisfy her.  Yea right.

Approximately 15 marshmallows later, she was still asking for more, but I decided enough was enough and I employed one of the oldest parent tricks in the book.  "The marshmallows are all gone!"

Without even skipping a beat she replied, "Give me bag!"  And the tone was just priceless.  It said, "Oh yea, Mom?  The marshmallows are gone?  Go ahead and prove it!"  Needless to say, she ended up with a few more marshmallows.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Get out the Energy

With being out of school for a week and the weather being a little colder, we've been inside a lot.  Ok, the colder weather comment is mostly because it's getting just a little bit difficult to zip up my coat these days.  But as a result, Evelyn has been a little rammy due to there not being as much going on as she's used to at school.  A while back I mentioned I wanted to write monthly about how we try to keep Evelyn entertained, as that has been one of the hardest things about having a toddler.  Well, this is finally going to be another post along those lines!

On New Year's Day Steve and I were both exhausted from staying up late (although not until midnight...and I have no shame in admitting it!).  Evelyn was tired, too, having partied hard with her girlfriends and not falling asleep until 11:00!

We decided to go to Longwood Gardens, where we have a membership.  We love Longwood no matter what the season.  There is plenty to do outdoors, as well as a huge indoor conservatory.  We love going on rainy weekends because no one thinks to go to a garden in the rain, and we usually have the conservatory to ourselves with nice, long pathways for Evelyn to run and skip down.  They have an indoor and outdoor childrens' garden, and a change of clothes is a must as water fountains play a big part in the childrens' areas!  If you are a parent of a toddler and live in the West Chester area, I highly recommend looking into a membership if you don't have one already.  If you don't live in the area, I would seriously suggest looking into local gardens/please touch museums/anything kid friendly and consider a membership if you know you will use it.  We go to Longwood at least once a week in the summer, and now that it's winter we still go about once a month.  It has gotten to the point that Evelyn actually asks to go.  If you decide to do a membership somewhere, I have done some pricing, and I have found that, in general, if you use your membership two or three times, you have gotten your money's worth, and many come with a few guest passes.  

So, on New Year's Day, we all got some fresh air, and Evelyn got to run out some of her energy:

And Mommy and Daddy were rewarded later when she took a nice, long nap!  Happy New Year to you all.  Thank you for reading my sporadic attempts at blogging, and stay tuned as I'm sure that come March I will have a brand new outlook on being a parent to two!  

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Birthday Number 2!

I am in complete and utter shock that my child has gone from this on the day she was born:

To her first birthday:


To her second birthday:

How has she become the kid who breaks out into song when she's in a good mood?  And how did she learn all of those songs in the first place (thank you day care!)?  

How did she become the lovable little girl who talks about the friends and family she hasn't seen in weeks?  And the friendly girl who says hi! to every single person she passes (We are going to have to work on stranger danger in the future.  Also, for crying out loud, what kind of person doesn't say hi back to that face??)

How did she become the smart girl who knows that she can delay bedtime just a few more minutes by asking for one more book or, as a very last resort, for a cuddle?  

Her sense of humor (FUNNY!), her ability to sense when others are sad or hurt (you okay Mommy?), and her stubbornness (no brush teeth!!!) are also some of my favorite things about her.  

I know everyone says it goes by so fast, but with each passing day she learns something new and I am just absolutely amazed at the person she is becoming and I love each day wondering what that new thing will be.  

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Copying Mommy

Daylight Savings is really a hard scenario to explain to a kid.  The night before we "got an extra hour of sleep" Steve was commenting on how he was looking forward to it.  I reminded him that almost two year olds really don't understand that idea.  He jokingly responded that he would be having a talk with our daughter about Benjamin Franklin and his ideas.  Needless to say, she was definitely up at 6:30 the next morning.

Unfortunately, that trend hasn't changed since.  Our child who usually sleeps until at least 7:30 on the weekends is up regularly at 6:30.  It has really made weekday mornings difficult as well.  Up until a week or so ago, Steve and I would get ourselves up and ready before waking Evelyn up at 7:00 to get her going.  It has been a real eye opener trying to get ready with her up.  I am totally ashamed to say that we have completely given in to her demand for "Marshall videos" every morning as we finish getting ready.  Marshall videos is code for hand me your iPhone so I can watch all of the videos you have saved.

This was really not the topic I set out to write about today, so I apologize for my meandering thoughts.  The point of my story was that this morning Steve let me sleep in a little bit and I was later coming downstairs to eat.  I popped a bagel in and as I was eating, Evelyn as usual asked for a bite.  I ripped her off a piece and leaned against the counter to continue eating.  She looked at me for a moment, reached up and grabbed onto the counter just like I was and commenced to eat just like I was.  It floored me.  And, not that I had never realized this before, I suddenly became immensely aware of exactly how important it is to be a good parent.

Further proof came later this morning when we had to stop suddenly in the car and faced a long line of traffic and I said, "crap!"  "CRAP!  FUNNY!" came the little voice from the backseat.  And with that we officially entered the stage of having to watch what we say from now on.  

Sunday, November 2, 2014

A Spontaneous Sunday Adventure

I've decided that if I'm going to be a successful blogger then I need to have more of a direction with my blog.  I think I'll have more to say if I have some kind of theme or purpose to stick to.  So I've been tossing around some different ideas, and I kept coming back to what has proven to be one of the hardest things for me as a parent, especially now that my child is a toddler: how on earth do I keep this kid occupied??  So at least once a month I am planning to post about something we have done in an effort to keep Evelyn entertained.  Hopefully there are others out there who go through the same thing, and this might be helpful!

So, tip #1 for helping find things to do with your kids: use Facebook to your advantage!  Now I know that many times Facebook has the ability to make me feel like a sub par parent when I see some of the amazing things other parents manage to do with their kids.  But there is a way to use it to your benefit.  First, follow/like every museum, historical society, park, etc. within a reasonable range from your house.  I have spent the afternoon brainstorming places I should be following after what happened this morning.  Don't even worry if it is a place that doesn't seem kid friendly, just follow it.  Because what will (hopefully) happen is that the seemingly un-kid friendly museum will announce one Sunday morning that they are having a FREE Pirate Day event for families!

You will read the post and go, "Hey Steve! Brandywine River Museum is having a free event for kids!  Maybe we should check it out?"  And as soon as you say it, you'll start to doubt yourself because your child is not even two yet, doesn't know what a pirate is, can't sit still long enough for you to tie her shoes, and now you want to take her to an art museum?  Don't listen to that voice.  Go to the museum, especially if it's free.  Especially if they don't advertise that it's for a certain age range.  Because there are without a doubt going to be other parents with kids just like yours, who aren't really the right age to be in that museum, and you are just going to smile and laugh as your child gallops through the galleries because she likes the way her feet echo off the floors.  And most people will thing it's adorable, and for the people who are obviously bothered you'll give a little apologetic smile, but you won't feel too bad because, hey, they could have checked the calendar before they went!

And you will have a ball making pirate hats, coloring pirate maps, and watching a perfectly abridged, 10 minute performance of Peter Pan with audience participation opportunities that even your kid appreciates and enjoys!  

Sunday, September 28, 2014

The Paci

A few weeks ago I posted this picture on Facebook with a caption something like "We're in trouble when we try to break the paci habit!"

I got a handful of comments with advice (which I am going to take eventually) on how to kick the habit.  For now I'm seriously not worried about it, it was more just a funny moment to me when I checked on her and this was what I saw.  I was really happy over the summer to get her down to just sleep time, carseat, and stroller.  I know that might seem like a lot, but I targeted the key times it is helpful for her to be content and hardest to distract with other things.  We were really doing well towards the end of summer, and then her incisors started to come in and that little piece of rubber was all she wanted to gnaw on for relief.  We caved to the cries for the paci and suddenly she was totally hooked again, and with starting back to school and her being cranky in the evenings it has just been easier to give in when she asks for it.  I'm starting to realize that the paci addiction has reached new heights though.  

A few nights after this picture was taken when I put her to bed, she wouldn't settle down until she had one in her mouth and one in each hand ready for later.  At school when I pick her up she doesn't get excited because I'm there, the first thing she calls out is "Paci!" because she knows we get it out of her box to take home and she gets it in the car.  (They are much better than we are about not giving it to her unless it's naptime at school.)

This morning I decided it's time to use the paci addiction to our advantage.  When she was rolling around and giving me a hard time on the changing table, I pulled it out of her mouth and told her she couldn't have it until she turned over to be changed.  She rolled over so quick and was perfectly still for the entire change.  There will come a day sooner rather than later when it will be time to kick the paci habit, but until that day comes, I'm going to use that sucker to my advantage as much as I possibly can!  

Saturday, August 30, 2014


Steve is away for the weekend, so last night when I checked on Evelyn before going to bed I whispered, "Sleep until at least 7:00 for Mommy.  7:30 would be even better!"  It was not meant to be.

Wake up number one occurred around 1:00, when she started crying and calling for Mommy.  It lasted about 2 minutes until she found her blankie/buddy/paci and fell back asleep.  If that had been all I dealt with last night it would have been fine.  But 3:45 rolled around, and I was awakened by the deafening CHIRP of the fire alarm.  There was one beep, that was it.  There are 7 fire alarms in our house.  One in each bedroom and one on each floor.  That was seven possible low batteries, even though according to the one I took off the wall first, a low battery would be signaled by a beep every minute.  Not that I wanted a beep every minute, but at least I would have been able to figure out which one was beeping and that it was really a low battery.  By the way, in my sleep deprived brain I was convinced that we were going to die of carbon monoxide poisoning, not that I was dealing with a battery problem.

I started wandering between the bedrooms because I was pretty sure that the beep had definitely come from upstairs based on the volume.  The bedroom alarms were blinking red, and I would put money on the fact that before this morning they blinked green.  I started to think that they were maybe all connected, and when one goes, they all go.  It's 3:45 remember, and my brain was not thinking clearly that if they were all wired together there would be no battery problem at all because they would be running on electricity.  About 20 minutes later there had been no more beeping, so I decided maybe it was just a freak incident and I should try to go back to sleep.  Try.  Not that I would actually sleep, still being convinced of carbon monoxide taking over my house.

At some point I must have dozed and in my dream an alarm went off and I jumped out of bed and ripped the battery out of the alarm that I left sitting on the night stand.  It wasn't even a fire alarm noise in my dream, I was just that on edge.  At 6:00 there was another chirp and I made the decision to take down all of the bedroom fire alarms and remove the batteries since they were the ones blinking red.  In the process of going into Evelyn's room she bounced up in her crib, "Hi Mommy! Up!  Bookie!" And that was the start of our day.  She was up and could not be convinced that it was still night time.  We got into my bed and did a few bookies.  At 6:30 there was another unholy CHIRP!  At which point, I ripped the last alarm off the ceiling in the hall, tore out the battery, loaded my kid in the car and went out for breakfast.