Showing posts from September, 2008


My husband and I are having a heck of a time coming up with a girl's name for "Turtle." It seems we really shot our wad with Aviva and there ain't no going back. The boy's name came to us rather quickly but the girl's name, well, it just isn't coming at all. I am starting to fear that "Turtle" may be it, after all. I am very particular about names. I want something that is easy to spell and easy to pronounce. It has to be clearly feminine or masculine and it has to work with my husband's last name. (That's the name we have chosen to give to our children although I have maintained my own.) I don't want anything trendy or common but I also don't want it to be weird. No Trig, Track, or Bristol for us. It would also be nice if the name had some sort of meaning to us. Oh yeah, and my husband has to like it which is proving to be the most difficult task of all. W hen I was pregnant the first time, we didn't find out the sex of our

The Arm....The Sequel...

I've learned that there is nothing worse than seeing your kid crying in pain. I'm not talking about the " I wanted that cookie and you said no " type of crying. I mean the " I pulled your arm too hard and dislocated it from the elbow " hysterics. The guilt of knowing that I caused Vivi's pain has officially topped my list of life events that royally suck. Yesterday morning, we piled into the car and headed to Vivi's pediatrician. The office was great when I called and they got us in right away. The receptionist assured me that Dr. Ray has a "great technique" for setting a dislocated forearm which was good because I was starting to feel like he was our last hope. After three tries in the emergency room, it didn't seem as easy as everyone professed it to be. When we walked in, Vivi told Dr. Ray that she loved him and that he was gonna make her "boo boo arm all better." It was really amazing to watch him work. Vivi sat

Worst Mother of the Year

I have officially awarded myself the craptastic title of Worst Mother of the Year. Is it because I let Vivi fill up on candy and cake at my sister's wedding? Nope . Is it because I've let her sleep in our bed for the last three nights? Nope. It is because I dislocated her elbow yesterday. That's right people- full on bodily harm. It all started on our walk home from the bakery yesterday morning. Vivi will periodically drop to her knees while we are headed somewhere and I periodically swing her up by her arm. Well, when I did it yesterday, she let out a scream and her arm went limp. Then she started crying...hysterically. I wasn't totally sure what had happened but I knew it was my fault. I picked her up, carried her home, and we got in the car to go to my husband's office. (Yes, the first official medical opinion that I got was from my psychiatrist/homeopath husband.) When I burst through the door of his office, I was panicked and sobbing. I said, "I thi

Please Meet My Granddaughter

Ever since Vivi learned that there was a baby in mommy's tummy, we've been helping her understand the different relationships in our families. She knows, and proudly announces, that she is going to be a big sister but the fact that she may have a sister or a brother is a little harder to grasp. (That's why this baby will probably forever be known as "Turtle.") Vivi is aware of who her grandparents are and who goes by aunt or uncle but the fact that Katie is my sister thus making her Vivi's aunt, well... I think it'll be awhile before she has a handle on that. She seems to be processing it though. We recently discovered that Vivi has renamed many of her stuffed animals. A teddy bear that used to be known as "Big Ted" is now "my big sister" and her little stuffed frog is a "little cousin." It's not stopping there though. As we were putting Vivi to bed a few nights ago, she told us to be quiet because someone was sl

Manners, please....

OK , the truth is out. My husband and I have no official parenting philosophy. We try to be thoughtful and respect Vivi as an individual being but we also try to be firm and consistent with rules and structure. I wouldn't say that we fall entirely under the attachment parenting umbrella but we certainly don't ascribe to the old maxim "spare the rod, spoil the child". We are just trying to find our way like everyone else. There is one thing in our household, however, that is absolutely non-negotiable: manners. Although the golden rule of treating others how you want to be treated is tough to instill in a toddler, the words "please" and "thank you" should not be. I'd like to say that we've worked hard to get Vivi to be a polite child but the truth is it was pretty darn easy. If she wanted something and didn't say please, she wouldn't get it. If she didn't say thank you, she would be reminded. It comes up a 100 times

Two's Company and My Politcal Problems

I've been a little depressed about the state of the world to write much in the last week. This upcoming election has me all worked up and I've been spending too much time dwelling on why I can stand John McCain and Sarah Palin. Rather than turn this blog into a forum for my political rantings, I've just been lying low and planning an international move with my husband and daughter should the unthinkable happen in November. I did have a chance this week to forget about the election when I took a brief foray into the world of parenting more than one child. I happily volunteered to take my friend's 8 month-old little boy for a few hours while she was classroom mom at her 3 year-old's nursery school. I had no doubt that I could handle this task. Vivi LOVES babies and this child is the sweetest, calmest baby to come our way. Plus, with five younger siblings, I was sure that I had been in this situation before. Then the baby's dad left, he started to cry, and

No Batteries Required

In my quest to keep Vivi occupied without turning on the television, I have discovered two wonderful books. The first, Unplugged Play by Bobbi Conner, is a collection of 700+ activities for kids aged 1-10. The games can easily be constructed from materials you already have lying around your house. I checked the book out of the library and it has so many great ideas that I plan on buying my own copy. The second book is The Mister Rogers' Parenting Resource Book by Fred Rogers. I received this as a gift while pregnant with Vivi and I've found it to be very useful. Not only does it have several easy activities for kids but it also has reassuring parenting advice. As promised, I also wanted to share some of the games and activities that have kept Vivi occupied for fifteen or more minutes. I hope for those of you with toddlers, these games will be useful for you. Whole Body Drawing Vivi loves to have me trace her outline on a large sheet of paper. (I tend to save the pape

Television and Play

I admit that I spent a huge amount of time in front of the TV as a kid. A cringe-inducing amount of time, really. As a young child, I loved Mr. Roger's Neighborhood and possessed a great fear of The Incredible Hulk. Saturday morning cartoons weren't often worth the battle since my brother staked out the TV well in advance of my rising from bed. Cable television hadn't found it's way to rural Vermont yet so the few channels we got were very often of little interest to me. Around middle school, it all changed. We got more channels and I had a television in my room. I would come home from school, grab a snack, and turn on the television. I probably spent more time watching such quality programming as Melrose Place than I did doing homework. And there was the little matter of my crush (obsession?!) with Fred Savage that caused me never to miss a single episode of The Wonder Years. I'm sure by the time I graduated high school, I was watching 3-4 hours of television a

Big Girl Bed

We greeted the month of September with an exciting change in our household. Vivi's room now contains a big girl bed-- and she is happily sleeping in it! We ordered the bed a couple of weeks ago and when we looked at it in the showroom, it didn't look very big. It's a twin bed but because it doesn't require a box spring, it is quite a bit lower to the ground than a typical bed. When we got it set up in Vivi's room, however, it looked huge and when she climbed into it, she looked so much like a baby that I actually reconsidered whether I was ready for this transition. Still, she was so excited and napped without incident in it that first afternoon. Her first night, I offered her the choice of sleeping in her crib or her bed. She looked at the bed and said, "Mama, dat bed is a lot of space for me but I sleep dare." She did well until about 2 a.m. when we heard a loud thump followed by some crying. She had pushed so hard up against the railing that t

Voting for Women

Well, in case it wasn't glaringly obvious, my husband and I are supporting Obama this election. Perhaps it was the Prius in our driveway that gave it away?!? At the start of this whole election process a year and a half ago, my pick was John Edwards. He was not the most dynamic candidate but I felt that he best represented my progressive values. While I loved the idea of having a woman or minority as our president, I strongly feel that the Democratic process only works if people vote for the person who most closely represents what they are looking for in a leader and in our society. I felt that Hillary Clinton tended to vote for things that she thought would be politically popular. (The war? She is a bright woman-- how could she have thought that was a good idea?!) With Obama, I loved his charisma and life story but I didn't think he was as progressive as the others. By the time Rhode Island's primary rolled around, Edwards was out and I was struggling with whom to vote