Archive for the 'parenting' Category

Day X

So, on Day 19 we fell a bit off of our Monster 30-day plan to be our best, calm selves and get our lives in order. This Administration and, well, life proved too much for us. Instead we said screw it to the mess in the house and the House and everywhere, had some nighttime cocktails and binge-watched some telly. It was cathartic in its own right.

And now, ten plus days later, the house is still a mess, the chaos in Washington is bigger than before and I’m dealing with a flood of emotions at having just celebrated Mollybear’s fifth birthday. With every one of these birthdays – or any milestone really (like, for example, she’s taken to saying, “Oh. My God,” which has to be a rite of passage) – I seem to die a bit on the inside. As cliched as it is to say, this parenting business is not for the weak of heart. And weak of heart I am.

On that note, I give you this article, which I thought was written by me at first. What tipped me off wasn’t the name of the author (I thought that perhaps I had submitted under a nom de plume), but that I drink coffee, Coke Zero and icy cold water in the morning. And then it struck me that the voice seems to be somewhat younger than I. And I don’t have one of those fancy towels she speaks of. And she showers more frequently than I do. And she’s funnier. And a better writer. Look, I didn’t write it. I get that. But still. For just a moment, I thought, “Wait. Did I submit an article to Slate?!”

Watching those kids

This is long, but incredibly worth it in my opinion. Hanna Rosin does it again.

Happy April! 17 days until we close!

Love and chaos

I love this. Thanks to Stephanie for sharing it. Another home run, Coke.

Stepping up to the counter

So, as you probably know, kids love to do what adults are doing. Specifically, kids love doing chores. I knew this, but I didn’t really know it until recently. At a Montessori school, where Bear is, they call all of the kids’ purposeful activity ‘work,’ which is cool but the term seems particularly apt when Molly is actually working. For example, we watch Molly spill water over and over just so she can clean it up. Surprisingly, this is only mildly annoying. Last weekend, I bought her some sponges, a spray bottle and a little caddy to carry her tools around in. She likes it, I think, but not as much as the similar version they have at school. The week before last, when we came to pick her up, she was “washing” the glass door and was quite surprised when she saw us on the other side of it. She was happy to see us, but after greeting us, she quickly returned to her chores.

Anyway, recently she’s been pretty obsessed with helping AO in the kitchen and wanting to fiddle with the toaster. I imagine we’ll buy her a play kitchen at some point, but for now I’m more interested in getting her up to countertop height so she can be a part of the actual kitchen (better her than me, afterall). Her teachers suggested we get her a Little Partners Learning Tower, but the $200 price tag has us flinch a little. I mean, it looks great and everything, but it’s really just a step stool, right? Well, not quite, but still. It seemed pricey. I searched on Craigslist and did a Google search for a used one. No dice. AO and I both stumbled upon this cool Ikea hack, though. I daydreamed that we’d be able to pull that together, but quickly got stressed out by the whole thing. Not to mention the fact that Ikea isn’t exactly in our backyard.

In the meantime, we’ve been using a chair. She can’t climb up on it, but it does the trick ok. She isn’t super steady on it, which can make for a nervous cooking session, but it’s not awful. On the other hand, AO didn’t think she was able to participate in things as much as she’d be able to if she were using something more secure. So I did a little more searching and found that Little Partners isn’t the only game in town. There’s also Guidecraft, which makes this number. At $180 a pop, though, the savings didn’t exactly make me feel giddy. I searched around some more and found that, for some reason, Amazon is currently selling them for $125. Hmm. I was intrigued.

[Also, keep in mind, I’m doing this research while having a texting discussion with friends about how we all want to be shopping more locally this holiday season. Oops.]

So, a little more research led me to this amazing YouTube video showing the differences between the two little helpers (that’s my new term for the thingees). Hooray! If only there could be easily accessible videos for every choice I have in life. Ultimately, we pulled the trigger on the Guidecraft one because (a) it’s less expensive and (b) it’s smaller. We’re hoping to move in April and while I don’t know what size our new kitchen will be, I know our current one is pretty teeny so Guidecraft’s smaller footprint is welcome.

I’ll be sure to let you all know what happens when we open up that box.

No screens!

I know everyone and their mother says to keep kids away from screens for eternity – or at least until age two – because they kill brain cells or something, but can it really be that wrong to let Bear watch a little Dark Crystal early on a Sunday morning? Probably, but it’s too late.