Friday, 20 October 2017

A Day in the Life Autumn 2017

These events occured on Friday 13 October 2017. 
It was an unusual day, so I thought it would make an intersting DITL post 

Jane 41 years
Husband 43 years
Kate 2.25 years
Tyler 4 years 

0105 I wake up to the sound of Kate's baby gate rattle and I can hear the white noise machine getting
louder. She's not making any noise...
0107 ... yet. "mommy!" "Mommy!!" "MOMMY!!!"
0108 I get up and open the gate and usher Kate to the bathroom and help her on to the potty. Surprisingly, the Pull Up is only minimally damp.
0110 She successfully pees in the potty. I wash her hands with a baby wipe and walk her back to her room.
0111 Lie down on the pull-out mattress in her room.
0115 She falls back to sleep quickly, I head back to my bed
~0120 drift off to sleep
0435 Kate wakes up again. I ask if she has to go potty and she starts to cry and sits down on her floor. I take her hand and lead her to her bed
0438 She falls asleep and so do I
0525 I'm woken up by Kate getting out of her bed and walking on to my mattress. "I have to go pee-pee" she announces.
0526 We walk into the bathroom, she sits on the potty, but doesn't produce.
0528 As we leave the bathroom, she points toward our room. I decided to let her go back to bed with us
0533 I think we are both fast asleep

0600 This is when I should be waking up and leaving for the pool. I've taken the day off from work as I have a three-day SCM swim meet. However the meet was cancelled due to the poor air quality due to the NorCal Wildfires. I don't feel right feeling disappointed in light of all the devastation caused by the fires; but our team was poised to win this meet! Something good that came out of the meet being cancelled was that the host team organized to let swimmers donate their meet fees to the Red Cross rather than receive a refund and they donated all the bottles of water, sandwiches and cookies that would have been fed to meet Volunteers and Officials to first responders.

0709 Husband wakes up in a panic thinking that I've overslept. I must have told him at least a dozen times that I was off today...
0710 I grab Kate's milk and let her drink it in our bed. I change into my gym clothes.
0715 I go back into the kitchen to make my protein shake, while Husband and Kate take a shower. Check the news for updates on the fires and enjoy a few minutes to myself.
0725 Husband is calling to me to bring him Kate's towel and robe. I meet them in the bathroom. Kate was playing with red soap/paint and the shower looks like a crime scene.
0730 I make Kate some toast and give her some yoghurt and raspberries
0735 Husband joins her in the kitchen. I go back to the bathroom and spray scrubbing bubbles spray in the shower as I'm afraid that the red paint may stain and our shower will forever look like the shower scene in Psycho.

0745 Bring Kate into her room to get her dressed. I had set out her activewear as she has soccer on Friday, but it was cancelled due to the air quality. Her Day Care is also having Fall-Fest today and costumes are encouraged. I'm planning to re-use her Olivia dress for Halloween, but I'm fearful about her being the only kid in a costume, so I opt to dress her in black pants and her Star Wars Storm Trooper T-shirt.

0747 Fridays are Share Days at her Day Care and as they're learning the alphabet, you have to bring in an item with the letter of the week. This week's letter is 'I'. I've been wracking my brain trying to find an 'I' item. I spot one of Kate's babies and decide she can bring in the doll, calling her an Infant. Of, course she wants to bring her two babies (Infants).

0750 I grab my protein shake, my travel mug of coffee, my purse, my gym bag, my lunch bag, Kate's lunch bag, and Kate's Day Care bag. As we walk toward the door, Kate requests for "Uppie". This is one of my biggest parenting pet-peeves. Every morning, when I'm carrying tons of stuff, she wants to be picked up.

0752 We make it into the car. I notice that she grabbed some address labels from Husband's desk (the free ones you get from the American Heart Association) and is placing them all over her car seat.
0755 Arrive at Day Care. As soon as we walk in she says "Hi Friends!" and walks toward her classmates without a glance in my direction.
0756 I decided to leave quickly and quietly while I can

0815 Arrive at the office. Groan. I hate having to work on my day off, but I've been so busy and I'm drowning in email messages and unfinished notes. Since I'm not officially on the clock, I decide to park in the designated patient parking area as it makes it easier to leave than my space in the multi-level garage.

0820 Heat up my breakfast and head to my desk.
0823 Check on news about the fires as I wait for my computer to start up

1035 I had planned on leaving about now as I wanted to attend the 11 AM Strength class as well as the 12 PM WOD, but I haven't completed as much work as I was hoping to, and I feel as if I'm in the zone, so I decided to stay a little longer.

1140 Now I decide to wrap things up. I've come to a good stopping point and I always give Husband a hard time when he works on his vacation days, as I make the arguement that working on a day off amounts to paying your employer to work. I kind of acknowledge that I could work all day and still not get caught up.

1145 As I'm leaving the office, I run into the President and CEO of our medical group as he still sees patients once every few months. I explain why I'm wearing my gym clothes in the office. Hey, maybe not a bad thing to have the President/CEO see you coming in to the office on your day off.

1147 I chat with him as we walk to the parking garage. He lives close to an area where they were mantatory evacuations due to the fire, so he and his family decided to leave anyway after loading up their car with valuable items. This fire is really hitting close to home. Another colleague in my group use to live in Santa Rosa and has several friends who have lost their homes. I also have a friend who lives in Sonoma who has been displaced all this week and doesn't know if her house survived.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       1200 The WOD is total manageable. Working on bar muscle ups, strict pull-ups and thrusters
1250 Finished a little early, head over to outlet stores (which is right next to the gym) to pick up a gift for Co-worker's newborn baby girl.
1340 Arrive at home. Check into Facebook while eating lunch
1410 Work at raking up leaves and other dead stuff in the front garden. I manage to fill 4 Lawn and Leaf bags and throw some branches into our plastic green bin
1520 Check the time and decided to start putting away tools and get cleaned up for Kate's Day Care event.
1535 Wipe down the walls while I shower, the red soap/paint comes off the tile very easily, but I'm going to have to scrub the grout with a brush. Decide to pick up some other colour paint so our bathroom doesn't look like The Red Wedding from Game of Thrones every morning.

1545 As I'm not sure if other parents will be wearning costumes, I wear my shirt that reads "This is My Costume"
1602 Arrive at Day Care, technically two mintues late, but no one says anything. Kate's teacher tells me that she has been out of sorts today. I find her sitting in the corner pouting.
1608 Spending some time talking to Kate to find out why she is upset (not really giving any reasons) and manage to convince her to come out to see the activities
1610 We start at the sticker table. There are pieces of orange paper cut into pumpkins to decorate with stickers. Stickers are the remedy to bring Kate out of her funk
1620 As I'm getting bored with stickers, I move on to the next table, which is making a center piece. There are hollowed out pumpkins with a green piece of foam and lots of flowers and other decorations to use. I suddenly realise that I am the only adult working on her own pumpkin, so I invite Kate over to 'help me'.
1635 We move on to a station of hay bails, which Kate is presuming is for climbing. There is someone taking family photos with a modern version of a Polaroid camera.

1640 I run into two other mothers that I've become friendly with through out this year. We were discussing the emergency kits we recently had to prepare for the kids. I revealed that I thought about contacting them to consolidate the supplies, but figured they were probably already done and we're putting it off to the last minute as I did. Nope, they were procrastinators too and thought combining resources was a good idea.

1705 Head inside to check out the food. It's hot dogs and macaroni and cheese. Ugh. Doesn't look too appetizing. Kate is fascinated with the self-pour spout on the lemonade container and has been filling up multiple glasses. She seems to be spilling more than she's drinking.

1720 While chatting with the other Moms, one reveals that she is pregnant. Just had her anatomy scan and learned she's having a girl. Congradulate her and make a note that I'll be able to pass on some of Kate's old clothes. The other Mom had shared with me that they had been trying and the now pregnant mom had asked about her fertility specalist (Other mom's first son was an IUI, then she had a sooner than expected spontaneous conception for her second). Can't help to wonder if this pregnancy was spontaneous or assisted, because that's just where my mind goes.

1745 Most other parents are getting ready to leave and staff are starting to clean up. I gather some plates and cups to help with this process and I encourage Kate to help clean up. She is doing her part to finish the mini-cupcakes by licking the frosting and throwing out the cake.

1755 Kate is not wanting to leave and I have to drag her away screaming. Unfortunately, we have a long walk through the parking lot to our car.
1805 We run over to Safe.way as I have a few items I need. I grab a cart just because it's easier to contain Kate.

1810 I left the cart too close to the individual squeeze packets of applesause. Kate has grabbed a box and put it in the car and is asking for a packet. On a few occasions I've let her open a box while we're still in the store. I try explaining to her that we don't need any more applesause as I picked up a big box of individual packets while I was at Costco. She starts crying. Some guy over hears our conversation and asks "Can you have too much applesause?" I send him a 'not helping' look, but he does make a good point. I decide to get some small tubs of applesause that she can eat at home and I won't have to deal with the issue of her eating packets at home when those are supposed to be for on-the-go.

1812 As we walk down to the end of the aisle, we pass the flower counter. The woman asks if Kate can have a b-a-l-l-o-o-n to cheer her up, unless she is behaving spoilt. I really appreciate that she asked this and decide Kate can have one as she came through very well on our applesause negotiation.

1820 The balloon's magic is very short lived, as Kate is becoming cranky again and is trying to climb out of the cart. I decided to bail on my shopping trip as no item on my list is so critical that we can't make it through the night. I do pick up a frozen pizza for our dinner. I know, not really much of a healthier upgrade from the hot dogs and macaroni that I turned my nose up at, but I really don't feel like trying to cook anything while she's acting this way. #lazyparenting

1823 Kate stays in the cart to help me unload on to the till, but then I take her out as she can now step from the cart onto the till. She wants to take her balloon with her. I try in vain to convince her to leave it attached (with a plastic clothes pin) to the cart.

1824 She has figured out how to un pin the balloon from the cart. I pin it to her shirt and using the terminology from her book, I explain that it is an 'Up' balloon and she needs to hold on to it. She takes the clothespin off, but the pin is heavy enough to prevent the balloon from going up.

1829 While I'm trying to bag my items and scan my clubcard, she's found something to stand on to allow her to reach the gum on display.
1830 I tell Kate she needs to step away and come to me by the count of three. Another woman in the queue informs me that she's actually standing in a stack of baskets and can't easily get out.
1831. The woman immediately behind me has wedged her cart in the aisle and as her face is buried in her phone, she doesn't hear me twice ask her to move. I move it myself so I can collect Kate and she gives me a dirty look.
1832 I'm running my card through the machine and keying the prompts to get cash back for the Farmer's Market. Kate tries to sneak back to the gum by crawling (thinking I can't see her if she's closer to the ground) I move my left foot to try to block her and I end of stepping on her fingers.
1833 She's all-out bawling. I'm holding her, signing for my cash back and trying to finish packing while everyone is looking at me.
1837 Make it to the car. Kate has calmed down quite a bit, but she requests that I apologize to her fingers. Cue #momguilt. I let her hold the bottle of Coke.Zero that I picked up to prevent swelling on her fingers.
1840 Buckle up Kate, pack up the groceries into boot of the car, buckle my seatbelt and Kate realises... "MY BALLOON!!!"
1841 Oh fuck. I forgot about the balloon.
1842 I start up the car. I'm not going to be the mom who goes back into the store for the balloon. Tonight's life lesson is why we hold on to balloons.
1845 She's really upset about the balloon. "MY BALLOON!" she cries over and over again. I now agree with Amber and I officially hate balloons now.
1847 The crying over the balloon has now morphed into crying for Daddy. This is another parenting pet-peeve. Husband has been AWOL so much lately due to work and hockey matches and I've been doing so much double duty and yet that's who she wants.
1848 My annoyance and frustration has just turned into understanding and some perspective on why she's been out of sorts.

1852 Arrive at home. Change Kate out of her Day Care pull-up, which is on the verge of leaking right now. Figure she's cranky as she is probably hungry. Set her up in the kitchen with a snack and some milk and turn on ABBA Pandora.

1855 She's calm enough to let me put the groceries away, unpack her lunch bag and finish up the breakfast dishes, plus feed the cats.
1857 Now she's insisting that I sit down next to her. Sitting down seems like a good idea. She crawls into my lap.
1903 I hear the garage door open. Husband is home way earlier than expected
1905 Kate jumps off my lap and has a warm reunion with her father.
1908 After a few minutes of cuddling, he goes off to take a shower and get dressing, leaving her upset again.
1911 Kate announces that she has to go potty, I try to follow her, but I am sharply told "NO, I DO IT MYSELF!!"
1915 I hang outside the bathroom, but she manages to use her stepstool to get on the big potty and then moves it to the sink to wash her hands after she's done.
1917 The oven beeps indicating that the frozen pizza is ready. I try to get up and Kate starts crying. It's hard to fathom how she can go from being so independent to being so clingy.

1922 Husband joins us and starts discussing his counsultation with a representative to re-do our siding and windows. This has been something he's wanted to do for a long time and figures it's a good time while our deck is ripped apart, although it will nearly double the cost of renovating our back yard. He thinks we can get an extended line of credit to fund the project.

1935 As I wasn't expecting Husband for dinner, there is not enough for him. He heads out to pick up a pizza for himself (and probably some beers) Kate is happily eating her pizza and doesn't fuss too much when he leaves.

1940 I turn on HBO to confim what time the second showing of Real Time with Bill Maher will be on. They're playing last week's episode, so there must not be a new episode on this week. I leave it on as I feel asleep around this point in the show last week and it wasn't loaded on to HBO GO. Russell Brand is a guest speaking rather prolifically about his book on addiction. I can't tell if he really knows what he is talking about, or is full of shit, or maybe a little bit of both.

1950 Listen to Bill Maher's monologue during his New Rules segment. He is discussing a piece of legislation proposed by Connecticut Senator Richard Bumenthal (I met him on a few occasions when he was Attorney General in Connecticut, and seemed like a good public servent) that would require cars to be manufactured with a device that would alert drivers if they leave their kids in the back seat of the car. Bill's initial objection is the cost of such devices would be passed on to non-parent drivers and it seems that the less costly option is "not to be a dumb-ass and check for your kids with your eyes." Pre-Kate, I definately would have agreed with this, but I learned first hand it can happen easier than you would think.  About a year ago, I was driving to work and I heard Kate babbling in the back seat of the car. I was on auto-pilot and turned right out of our street to go to work instead of turning left to go to Day Care. I didn't get that far, but I shutter to think what may have happened if she had fallen asleep and I hadn't heard her (fortunately it was not a hot day, but I know that's not the point). At the same time, I don't know how effective a monitor on the dashboard would be as you have to get out of the car first before getting your kids out and I think a lot of cases involve parents knowingly leaving their kids in the car. I also can agree with Bill's point that issues of over-regulation that become losers for the Democrats.

2000 Throw the dishes in the sink to deal with later and fix two cups of milk for Kate. One for night, and another for morning.
2003 Instruct Kate to put her pee-pee in the potty. She delays a bit, but does eventually.
2008 Encourage Kate to climb up on her changing table to put on her night time pull-up and change into her Pig Pijamas.
2010 Sit down on her bed with a handful of books. Tyler walks in and joins us on the bed
2025 She's finished her milk, I curtail her reading session by stashing some unread books behind my back.
2030 Husband comes home while she is brushing her teeth and brings her to bed and says good night
2032 I lie down on the mattress next to her bed. Kate is asking that I hold her hand

2035 Tyler walks in the room and lies on my abdomen. As much as I really wish that Kate would put herself to bed, and I wouldn't have to do this...I do enjoy it. After running around non-stop all day, this is the first time I get to take a break and rest. Plus, I appreciate the one-on-one time with Tyler.

2045 She sounds like she is sleeping, so I scoop up Tyler and join Husband while he's eating his dinner.
2050 He's going on and on about the siding and windows. I'm way too tired for this conversation so I feign interest as he's talking.
2105 Husband offers to do my dinner dishes if I clean the cat box. Deal.
2115 Brush teeth and get changed into my bed clothes
2125 Hop into bed. Use the Cozi app to work on the grocery list as I plan out meals for next week
2130 Flip though my copy of Michelle Tam's new Paleo cookbook Ready to Not to get inspired.
2132 Tyler jumps up on the bed and is rubbing his head on the edges of the book.
2130 Wow. Hot Friday night. Frozen pizza, putting a toddler to bed, now in bed with my Husband and cat reading cookbooks.
2131 Nowhere else I'd rather be.

Steps: unknown as my fitbit didn't change over night :(
Also I have no idea why this published with a big space in the middle

Monday, 9 October 2017

2.25 Years

Last update, I decribed how I was surprised to find myself feeling lonely on an overnight trip when I had some rare time alone. Once again, motherhood has caught my emotions off-guard. Husband and I have become a little concerned with Kate's ABBA obsession on Pandora. Seriously; she can tell the difference between the original ABBA and the musical/movie soundtracks or another band covering ABBA. While I've been trying to convince her that life can be better than an ABBA song; better than Dancing Queen. Husband introduced her to the Disney station on Pandora. For right now, it's as close as she's come to seeing some of these classic movies or cartoons. It holds her interest for maybe all of five minutes. Any-hoo, we were listening to Disney songs one night and "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid was playing. At first, I was surprised that after almost 30 years, I still know just about every line to that song. Then, I was even more surprised to find that I was crying over that song.

Not just a little crying, like you do over a Hall.mark commercial. This was an all-out bawling my eyes out approaching an ugly cry. Kate had to actually ask "What's wrong, Mommy?" "Mommy, you okay?" I know I don't ovulate with my Nex.planon, so I couldn't blame it on any endogenous progesterone production of PMS, but my ovaries can still produce estrogen, so maybe I just had a little blip of estradiol released. Nope. One week later, we were listening to the Disney station once again and the waterworks were in full force. Seriously? What is happening? What is it about this song that is triggering such raw emotions? After all, what message is it sending our impressionable daughters? Ariel's original intention to go to the surface was to learn. Important lessons; like what is a fire and why does it burn? Then she meets a guy and is distracted from her goals. Girlfriend, you're going to be learning about a whole new kind of burning. It's called Herpes. Okay. Phew. Skeptical, cynical Jane is back.

Diapering/Potty training
Heading into the 3 day Labour Day weekend marks three months since I took a week off to introduce potty training. Am I where I want us to be at this point in time? Oh shit, that sounds like an interview question. I'd answer with yes and no. She really has it while were at home and we've had some totally dry days. Days when I'm changing her for bed and I'm removing the exact same clothes I put on in the morning. Does that seem as exciting as it sounds? It really is. Often, she'll make it to the potty and will put most of the pee in the potty, but she pees a little bit while she's en route and the undies and sometimes pants are wet enough that they need to be replaced. We'll go back to naked training and she'll get it again... for a while, then she's partially wetting again. She had a few more accidents at home while my parents were visiting, which I'll attribute to her being distracted, but there were two episodes where she annouced "I peed!" [on the floor] and I suspect it was an attention grabbing technique as everyone was busy getting dinner ready during that time. Sigh.

She also does pretty well when we go out, most recently she announced that she had to pee while we were shopping at Safe.way and we actually made it to the bathroom on time! I was also concerned about pooping as Little Myrtle didn't use the potty for #2 until she was passed the age of 4 and my friend's daughter requested to have a diaper every time she needed to poo. Fortunately, Kate didn't have any fears or issues about the douce and she hasn't had a poop accident in a long time (although just after I wrote this, you know what happened...) Where I wish we were doing better is at Day Care. To be fair, she is one of the first in her class to start potty training and they don't really work with the kids until they move to the 2 year old class as the toddler room is gated off from the bathroom. I know I need to be more patient as she just moved into the 2s after the August break, but because their floors are carpeted, they keep the kids in pull-ups/diapers until they're really able to stay dry.

Not only do I feel this is hindering her from moving forward. It's become such an issue when we try to remove the pull-up when we get home (we also have the same problem in the morning). She loses.her.shit. It's the mother of all meltdowns. "My Diaper!" "MY DIAPER!!" "MYYY DIIIAPPPERRR!!!" Our Diaper De.kor had a lock feature that I have never found the need to use until recently. Seriously, she'll put her hand in the pail to try to retrieve the soiled diaper. [shaking my head] She's about 40/60 on staying dry at naptime. We still use a pull-up at nap time, but sometimes it will be dry. There have also been occasions when I've forgotten to don a pull-up or she'll fall asleep early and she'll wake up absolutely soaked. I really don't know how we're going to do nap training. I was comtemplating starting nap training when we get back from the east coast in early October, but I'm thinking this may be too ambitious. We probably won't start night time training until she's 3, because right now, she pees for all of California at night. She was soaking through her Pamp.ers Night time diapers, so I decided to use pull-ups at night. Although they are less absorbant, they have a better fit, which has lead to far fewer leaks. Additionally, on a particularily hot night, Kate decided to pull off her shorts and diaper and wet her bed all night. PULL-UPS FOR THE WIN EVERY TIME. We may be ready to move up to size 3T (gasp). My last comment on diapers: Swim diapers are completely useless. I took Kate to our community pool one afternoon, and as I loaded her into her push trike, I thought she felt wet. I sort of ignored it, hoping maybe she spilt some water on herself. Nope. By the time we arrived at the pool (a ten minute walk), not only was she completely soaked, pee was pouring out as if it were a sieve. Yeah, swim diapers are just a facade to appease pool managers. Pee is going in that pool. Since no one patrols for swim diapers, I've given up the swim diapers and I have her use the potty before we get in. She probably is peeing in the pool as someone [ahem; Husband!] taught her it's okay to pee in the shower...

Oh, as she was recently resisting wiping; I may *may* have taught her "I need TP for my bunghole!" Shut up. It worked.

Oh, I've been reading my old updates where I gushed about how my baby was such a good sleeper and I wonder if I'll ever get back there again. I know I should shut up. I keep reminding Husband that to go nearly a full year with her sleeping through the night every night, is really unheard of and what we are going through now; is in fact, normal. However, it is still pretty rough. I also reminded Husband that she is going though another transition as she was moved up to the 2 year old classroom during this time. At the begining of the year, when she moved from the babies to the toddler group, she was really tired and we ended up putting her to bed earlier. This time, it's having an opposite effect. We've been putting her to bed a little later, and she gets this super burst of energy right before she goes to bed, so it takes longer to get her to wind down.

While I was such a champion for Cry-It-Out, sadly it does not work once your kid can get out of bed and subsequently, can climb over her gate. Oh yes, Kate the climber scaled her 36 inch high gate. Looking back, I can't beleive we didn't see this #parentingfail coming. If she can climb out of the crib, why didn't we anticipate she'd climb over the gate? (I watched her do it -she grabs the top and places her bare feet on the bars and walks up... just like she sees people at CrossFit do rope climbs...Shit! not a good idea to bring her to the gym) So now, one of us (usually me) has to stay with her on the pull out mattress until she (nearly) falls asleep. I know this is wrong. I know she needs to learn to fall asleep on her own. We're probably making things worse every night we stay with her. Yet, it's the path of least resistance and is the only way we can get her to fall asleep in a reasonable amount of time. She'll actually stay in her bed. She does toss and turn a bit and will kick off her blanket and then requesting her blanket, "flanket on" (Flannel blanket = flanket) I tried a few different blankets that I could tuck into the mattress, but little Houdini would wiggle out of them. I've currently been using a quilt that a patient of mine made for her as I can just toss it on her.

She was waking up anywhere from 1-3 times per night. Again following the path of least resistance, we found it worked best to respond to her right away. Sometimes you can coax her back to her bed just by standing outside her door, sometimes she insists you lie on the mattress next to her and fortunately, she usually falls back to sleep in minutes. We started to wonder if she were falling out of bed and that was waking her, so I gave up on the pool noodle and purchased a small bed rail. It seems to be working, as she's been sleeping through the night more often than not, but we found that it sometimes works for us to sleep in her room. Husband had to get up at 5:30 on a Saturday morning, so I went into Kate's room when she woke around 5 AM and I was able sleep through him getting ready and leaving. While it was super hot, I was opting to sleep in her room as she has a fan.

She got a car for her second birthday! A classic Little Tykes Red and Yellow Crazy Coup. This was one of those gifts that really meant something for me as I always adored them and really wanted to be able to give one to my own child. Our friends in LA got the newer version for their daughter, which has a handle to make it easy to push, but I was really set on the classic car. Now I kind of wish I had gone for the one with the handle (Kate hasn't mastered the Fred Flinstone action of moving the car
with her feet) and you have to lean over to try to push it.

She also has a new kitchen. Thanks to Body Shop Girl for her recommendation not to put it in her room while we were transition to the toddler bed, we set in up in our foyer, which is a very under utilized space in our house.

Her twins! Kate has started brining her favourite dolls and stuffed animals to Day Care, which means we have to be cognosant about bringing them home. It was a very long weekend explaining to her that her Baby was away on a vacation. While I was shopping for her gate and bed rail, I discreetly snuck another baby doll into the cart, so we would have a back up. I made it out of the store without her noticing, but while she was strapped in her rear facing carseat, she could see me put it in the car boot and excalimed "TWO BABIES!!" I was busted. It was a #momfail. There was something about the joy in her voice as she says "two babies!" I gave her the other doll and watched and she enjoyed playing with both dolls. Of course, she now has to bring both babies to Day Care each day and it's even more to collect each night.

Bandaids. One of the other things I was looking forward to when I had a kid, is that I could justify buying Hello Kitty Bandaids. It turns out cartoon bandaids are really stickers Anytime she bumped or banged herself, "I need a bandaid!" We had to teach that bandaids are only for bleeding (point proven when she sustained a small scrape on her foot). It was a greater challenge to explained that the Disney Villian series stamps are not stickers.

The word 'the'. She injects the work 'the' a lot. "Brush the teeth" "Open the mouth!" and my favourite "Happy The Birthday!"

She is also into nail polish. I had to take her with me to get a pedicure for Isabelle's baby shower. She soaked her feet with me and stayed still long enough for me to apply polish on her toes. Since then she's been requesting "paint on the toes!" She now sits still and lets me cut her fingernails if she'll get nailpolish.

I can't think of too many things off the top of my head, but she now knows how to tell us what she doesn't like by declaring "I no like it!" She has been making any sentance into a negative by inserting the word 'no' in the way the French use ne (pas) around the verb. "I no have to go pee-pee" "I no want to get in the car!" My personal fav; "HEY!! NO DO THAT!"

Her speech is progressing very well. About a month or two ago, she started busting out complete sentences. We were getting ready to leave the house and I told her that I had to find the cats first. "Lylah (Tyler) is under the bed" she informed me. Not only was it her first complete sentence, it was accurate too! (in fairness, that's where he hides every morning) Later that evening when I was trying to get her to go to her room and get ready for bed, she stood in the kitchen and declared. "No, I am going to stay right here!" Good sentance structure; not too happy about the defiance.
Her most impressive sentance came while she and my Dad were playing on her bed. "Papi" she began (yes, his name is a reference to David Ortiz) "I think Lylah went pee-pee on my bed." My Dad looked down and noticed a wet spot on her pants. "Kate, did you go pee-pee and you're trying to blame the cat?" "yeah." Impressed with the sentance construction and creativity to blame the cat. Not too impressed with the potty miss.

She is "reading". Not really. We've read her books so many times, that she's memorized the lines and can receit them; or she look at a page and describe what she sees. Yet, she insists she's reading to me.

Her 2T clothes grew tight very quickly, so we've just jumped up to 3T. It seems like she grew out of her shoes overnight and currently I only have 3 pairs that will fit her. She's also become obsessed with her Pig clothes. Seriously, everyday she looks for stuff in her drawers. I *may* have sent her to school in her Pig pajamas one day, as who can really tell?

We're giving soccer [football] another go. Our Day Care offers soccer classes and I signed Kate up in the Spring. The class is for 2 years and up, but I tried to argue that she was going to be turning 2 during the course. They let her try the first class; and then refunded our money as Kate wasn't cooperating with the lesson. (I assign some blame to Husband as he sent her off school in her crocks and not the sneakers I left out for him...) We then tried another soccer class on Tuesday, and she still wasn't paying attention to the instructors and would run off and do her own thing. I signed her up for the Autumn soccer session through Day Care and I thought she might do better in a more familiar setting along with her Day Care friends. She's been to two classes and hasn't been kicked out, so that's a good sign. She even came home after her frist class and reported to Husband that she "scored a goal"

We also started gymnastics classes on Tuesdays. It's not so much a structured class, as there is a gym filled with mats and a few pieces of equipment and the kids get to run around and play. We missed a few classes due to her being sick and our trip, but recently she was crying at the end of class as she didn't want to leave, and ortunately, the instructor let us stay for the next class as a make-up session. it's going to be hard to explain that we can't do that every week.

In some ways, things are getting better; in other ways thing are staying the same and in some ways, they are getting worse. She's getting a little better at actually sitting in a seat and eating with us. She has to have the same food on the same plate, and yet will try to eat off your plate rather than hers. We're trying really hard to fight her on this, as I feel this is a battle I need to stand my ground, but sometimes she wears me out and I relent. She'll stay in her seat for half of dinner, then will try to climb in one of our laps. Again, trying to nip it in the bud, but sometimes, it's how we can finish our meal, rather than wondering what she is getting into somewhere in the house. Sometimes, I still need to spoon feed her, but it's how I do my ninja mom tricks of hiding shreadded chicken in guacamole.

Health Issues:
She had a fever and needed to be picked up from Day Care...on Husband's birthday. He was a good sport about it. Fortunately, she was back to normal the next day and she managed to avoid the Hand Food and Mouth Disease and conjunctivitis that was going around her Day Care. She's had eczema on the back of her hands for a while and she's just gained a new patch on her thigh. She occasionally gets hives on the back of her legs. I've been contemplating taking her for a visit with our pediatrican, but it's mostly because I want another developmental check before her third birthday as I know he'll just tell me to use hydrocortisone on the rashes.

Looking forward to:
At press time, we returned from our East Coast trip. We took a trip to the zoo, a children's musuem, an abandoned castle and hit the beach a few times. We caught up with some local friends and Myrtle arranged her schedule to fit a lunch date for just the two of us in my old Connecticut neighbourhood. Is it too lame to say that I'm already looking forward to next Spring and warmer weather? It's been rather cool lately. (Yeah, I know some of you are rolling your eyes at the Californian, thinking 'trying dealing with two feet of snow Bitch!') Hear me out as I swim in an outdoor pool at 6 AM! The water is warm and feels great once you get in, but getting in and out of the pool is brutal. We're looking forward to The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays and getting some much needed rain (oddly, I love swimming in the rain) but I have some legitimate reasons to look forward to Spring.

We're going to un-shithole our backyard! While my parents were visiting and Husband and I took some time off and we happened to be home when a landscaper was walking through the neighbourhood trying to drum up some business. Had we not been home, we just would have thrown away any flyers or cards he left on our front step, but we set up a free consultation. We're going to demo and rebuild our deck, create a small paved area which ties into an improved stone wall. We're also installing fake grass. I know, eyes rolling, again... it was a compromise. I would love to have real grass as I would actually enjoy mowing, but Husband doesn't want the expense of watering it. We're hoping a no maintainance lawn will actually be a good selling feature when we decide to move. No, it's not the Sunset magazine back garden of my dreams, but it's going to be a hell of a lot better than what we have now. We won't be embarassed to have friends come over. Kate will have a decent place to play. I'll actually post pictures, so watch this space.