Friday, April 15, 2011

The Driveway Bike Ride

I love that he knocks at the neighbor's yard.
My Jambuca is so much fun.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Let the Lunch Begin!

I took Jambuca to lunch with me at work today for the first time. I've been waiting for this forever.

We talked about it this morning, before school.
"Sweetheart, I'm going to take you to school, and then at lunchtime, I'll come get you and take you to the cafe for lunch. Is that OK?"
"After that, I'll take you back to school for nap. OK?"
"Say, OK, mommy"
"OK mommy"

His teachers also talked to him about the plan, that mommy would be bringing him back for nap.

When I arrived to pick him up, he started to cry that panicked cry that unmistakeably means "You'd better be here to take me with you because if I see you and you leave again I just won't be able to liiiiiiiiiive!" I told him that he needed to calm down before we could go to lunch, and so, he did. Poof. Back to happy.

We walked to the cafe, and he loved the piano player. The pianist played him a round of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, and for the rest of lunch, Jambuca would occasionally point to the piano and sing the song, as if to remind me how cool that was.  He had a chicken finger, steamed carrots (and discovered the salt shaker, yum), and some pineapples and strawberres. He had perfect manners, and afterwards, we walked back having a great time. When we passed the preschool, he said "There goes Lelly! Bye-bye Lelly!"

He was perfect, until we walked into the daycare building. He cried. I felt bad.

As I walked into my office 3 minutes later, the phoe was ringing. Jambuca's teacher, calling to tell me that he was perfectly happy once again, playing out in the playground.

Well be doing that again! Lunch with your kids at the cafeteria at work is possibly the best, and least-publicized, benefit of my job.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Breaking a Sweat on the Weekend

This is a long update, with some fun stories closer to the bottom. Impatient readers can scoll to the string of ***** below.
We had such a good weekend, on the heels of a not-so-great week. Last Tuesday morning, e-baby threw up at breakfast time, but it was pretty much just a gag reflex from coughing very hard. Still, rules are rules so she stayed home from preschool. It was probably good to have a day to let her cold recover anyway.
Wednesday at lunchtime, e-baby's teacher called -- she had pink eye. Persona non grata until Friday. Well, a kid with pink eye (that's being treated) can actually be a lot of fun to stay home with, and we went on a bike ride (she rode, I ran), wewent to a museum, we went to lunch with SNG, and we even went to my office for several hours so I could try to catch up on at least a little of that work.
Friday was normal.
Saturday morning was Peace and Fuzzy's daughter's 2nd birthday pary, so we celebrated and had a blast catching up with friends. It wore Jambuca out again, and as he tried to take a nap on their living room floor while other kids climbed over him, I remembered the last time we wore him out and decided it was time to go. He got a good nap at home.
While Jambuca slept, e-baby and I picked up the NEW COUNTERTOP for our kitchen island! YAY!
Backstory-- we have a big kitchen island, 3'x6', with overhang for seating along one edge. It comfortably seats 2. We also have a little counterspace for seating near the sink. It also seats 2. But all 4 of the chairs usually surround the island. Clearly, it's everyone's favorite place to sit. We have 4 stools, but aren't really happy with them because they're hard to clean, easy to smoosh a finger with, and not really our style. So we decided to get a new countertop that's a foot longer, and new stools to match. The newer, longer countertop holds 3 seats comfortably along the long edge plus a 4th seat on one short edge. BONUS-- you can actually fit one more stool on the long end if you want, making it seating for 5 (nice when one of those is a clip-on highchair).
We looked online for new stools, but the ones we liked best were available for internet order only from Target.
SNG installed the new countertop just in time for Jambuca to wake up so we could all go to Target to look at other stools in stock. It must be all that clean living, but There They Were!! Four new chairs, the ones we liked, in the store on clearance! Someone must have bought and returned them. We grabbed all four and headed for home. They are PERFECT! Best of all, they adjust in height so that kids can be up higher. They also go low enough to double as child seating at my dining room table. At Thanksgiving and Christmas, that'll be so nice.
Sunday morning, I made some broccoli cheese soup and SNG puttered in the yard with the kids. It was gorgeous weather. He took a mountain bike ride in the morning, and after lunch, I took e-baby for a bike ride. She likes to ride her bike to the state park and down to the lake, about 5 miles round trip in some hilly terrain. I run alongside her, and help her negotiate traffic, joggers, dogs, potholes, whatever. I also usually give her a push most of the way up the mile-long climb out of the park. She's such a good sport, though, and never whines or complains. She just loves to ride.
And she gets faster every time we do that ride.
And my push becomes shorter and shorter.
And I seriously need to become a faster runner! :-)


This evening SNG had the idea to see whether e-baby could read Hop On Pop. If you've never read it, each page has 2 or 3 words that rhyme, a short sentence or phrase using the words, and a picture. Like,

Mouse on house.


Pat sat on a cat.

She was so excited to try. We agreed that she could do the uppercase words a the top, and SNG and I would read the sentences at the bottom.

She certainly needed some help (NIGHT and FIGHT don't work phonetically), but really did very well, getting most words in the book. Still, it was hard work, and by the end she was flagging. She's pronouce N's as T's, confuse W and M, and other mix-ups. I could tell she get frustrated a few times. But she didn't want to give up and finished it.
Then she climbed into bed, and I sang her a song. As I ran my fingers in her hair and on her forehead (a magical sleepy-touch that makes children and some adults drift instantly to sleep), I realized that her forehead was sweaty. Now that is some effort.
It gave me new respect for the task of learning to read.