Sunday, December 27, 2009

Bad Blogger

I realize I am totally behind on the blogging. I've not posted pictures of visits from friends, Chloe's first Nutcracker performance, some very ugly sweaters, and a wonderful Christmas. I will do it, but not right now.

Right now I'm cuddling on the couch with a little girl with a cold, drinking her juice. A little girl who when I said, "Hi, cutie Addie!" replied, "Hi, cutie Mommy." And then I heard a snip and she gave her Christmas Barbie a haircut. (Note to self--find and hide all scissors. Somehow I knew Addie would be my cutter.)

I've got one girl at church with her dad, and one girl napping. I'm not feeling too guilty about sitting on the couch because I do have the first load of about 15 post-vacation laundry batches in the washer.

And I'm missing the rest of my family back in Utah so badly I can almost taste it. I just hate that I never learned to appreciate my family until I no longer live near them. Being a grownup is just so hard sometimes.

But now I'd better go because Addie is backing herself onto my lap, so I need to kiss her and love her before she is a grownup too. Because it really does happen just that fast.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Mom, I want . . .

Chloe's been watching a lot of Qubo lately, and on Qubo, they advertise a lot of products you can only purchase on TV. Chloe wants every one she sees, whether she needs an abdominal exerciser or not. Here an excerpt from an afternoon's TV watching.

Mom: Why?
Chloe: Because they make it better.
Mom: Make what better?
Chloe: They make it better, faster. I want Santa to bring it to me.
Mom: Why?
Chloe: Because they make it beeeauuuutiful.

Pillow Pets-- Unicorn. Because they're just so compy. (This one I've actually contemplated purchasing for her. After all, it's a pillow. It's a pet. It's a pillow pet! It's also been sold out for months.)

Vectron Wave--Cause dere look fun. I really love those.

Quick Gems--I want to get those from Santa. Cause dere look fun.

Chloe: Mom, how bout lets get Dad a bowling ball. Cause he doesn't have one. Let's get him a blue one. (This one was not on Qubo--I can only attribute it to repeated watchings of A Christmas Story. Please judge me.)

Chloe: Happy Birthday Mom!

Perfect Brownie Pan--
Mom: Why do you want that?
Chloe: Because to help you not hurt your hands.
Mom: Oh, well that's kind of sweet.

I think we need to turn off the Qubo before Christmas morning turns into one big fail for Chloe when she doesn't get a single thing on her list.

Health Questions

Is it better to make whole wheat rolls that no one will eat, or buttery white rolls that everyone will immediately devour?

If I add a packet of Emergen-C to a large cup of Tang, does that constitute a health drink?

Since my nose is completely and painfully stuffed up, how is it possible that changing Addie's diaper still makes me gag?

Is it better to have Addie produce three separate toxic poops everyday, or one giant, possibly blown out one?

Someping Degot

Several months ago, I mentioned that Chloe liked to use the phrase, "Done Degot," to alert me when I had forgotten something. That phrase has now morphed into, "Someping Degot." And Chloe's not the only one using it. I was playing with girls the other day and Addie leaned over and said, "You someping degot to give me dat." I would correct her, but I'm curious to see if this can catch on outside our house.

In truth, I have been forgetful about writing down the cute things these girls say and the minutiae of their daily lives. I used to be much better about that. So here we go.

Chloe is getting so big, and much of what she says is no longer funny, but achingly grown up. She's so good at saying her prayers, and always asks for me to sleep well and for my hands not to hurt anymore. She loves to make up new words and names all the time lately. Bellia and Bageea were two favorites for a while, but now every time she plays pretend with Addie, she makes up new names for the both of them, and I'm supposed to remember them, though they change several times during the conversation. She's good at identifying what letter words start with, but when she runs out of real words, she just fills in with words of her own creation. "Mom, cow starts with C, and cat, and cookies and camea and calea and ceroonie." Sure it does. The other day she got me, though. We were doing the letter "M" and after the obligatory Maggie, and Mom and moon, she said, "And Moh starts with 'M.'" And I'm thinking, Moh, that's a short one for her. Then she finished, "Moh, like Dad mows the lawn," and I realized I'm the one who's so sleep deprived I'm incapable of remembering the English language.

She did crack me up the other day when I asked her, "Do you need to go to the bathroom?" "No, Mom, I'm not dancing yet." She actually seems to be doing the pee-pee dance a lot lately, and I'm afraid she's just picked it up as a habit, and that's how she moves now.

Whenever we go to a park, Chloe always comes up and asks me if it's okay if she makes friends. I say no. Just kidding, I'm the antisocial one. I always say yes, but inside I'm just praying that she does make friends and we're not yet entering the world of mean girls. But I also know I'm not enough for her socially anymore. She wakes up every morning and says, "Mom, where are we going to go today? What are we going to do?" I did take her on a date the other night. We went and got a treat to eat, then went to a store to get her new pajamas. As we got out of the car, she walked next to me and was so big and so grownup, and I just wished that she would still want to hold my hand. And then she reached out and took my hand and smiled at me and all was right in the world.

Addie is giving me major deja vu these days. My brother Matt was the talkingest darn thing you ever saw when he was growing up. He used to follow our neighbor around as she gardened, and she would say to him, "Matt, you talk and I'll listen." And he would. And so will Addie. She will follow me around all day, just talking and talking and talking, narrating everything. In her chipmunk voice. She picks up random objects around the house and acts out little plays constantly.

While I was making her Halloween costume, she came up to me and said, "I a princess now. I get married. Inna tempoh." Awesome. She also loves to wander around with a magic wand saying, "Bibbidi Bobbidi boo. I turn you into a goon." She is generally polite, though, and always says, "Thank yoooou food. Thank yooou milk." Also, if you ask her how things taste lately, you always get the same response. For instance, she was just examining an orange fruit snack, told me it was a watermelon and it, "Tastes like stawbees." Her other catch phrase right now is, "The best I can." All day long I hear, "The best I can," as she goes about her various activities. It makes me smile, also because I once asked Chloe what mom's do and she replied, "The best they can."

Potty training is still a much distant goal for Addie. I called her to lunch the other day and found her standing stock still with red watery eyes and new instantly what she was up to. Before I could act she said to me, "Yeave me ayone (Leave me alone). I mean it!"

Maggie is getting so big--almost 5 months old already. She can almost sit, and has finally remembered how to roll back onto her back when she gets stuck on her tummy. She loves cereal, but prefers to be fed while sitting on the lap of the feeder. I think it makes her think she's actually getting grownup food. I did slip her some black bean soup the other day, and she was in heaven. Often when I hold her now, she'll turn and give me an open mouth, lick kiss and I can't figure out if she's being affectionate or hungry. Then again, if she were hungry, she'd be attempting to burrow her way through my shirt.

We've been working on sleep training. It's been an ugly road. She had been sleeping through the night, waking once around 3, occasionally even sleeping the whole night through. Then she reverted to every 2-3 hours. So now we've been putting her down and letting her cry. She'll wake around 12, cry for about an hour, then sleep until 5:30, eat, and go back to sleep until 8. The night before last when I went in, she'd gotten one leg completely out of her sleeper. Last night, she'd pulled one arm totally out of her sleeve. I can't figure out if this is what is causing the wakeup, or if she's so mad during the wakeup that she manages to undress herself. Either way, the wakeup has got to stop. Everyone else in the house manages to sleep through the hour of crying, but I'm up for the whole thing. And usually ready to run away and not come back by the end of it. And then it takes me forever to get back to sleep. I know it will be worth it once she starts sleeping, but currently, I'm falling apart. It has been well over a year since I've consistently gotten more than 2-3 hours of sleep at a time. I'm thinking it is no coincidence that insomnia and insanity begin the same way. And so does infancy.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Sayonara Sea Monkeys

Here is a picture from last December. You can see the sea monkeys on the windowsill.

On Wednesday night, while preparing for the much anticipated arrival of some beloved friends, I mopped the kitchen floor and washed all the rugs.

On Thursday night, Chloe wanted to help cook dinner, and I acquiesced. She soon got distracted by the 18 month old sea monkey habitat on the windowsill, and decided feeding them was much more pressing than helping me. There was a crash, and I turned to see the counters, cupboards, dishwasher, Chloe, the rug and most of the floor covered in green sea monkey water, with a few wriggling sea monkeys struggling for life on various surfaces. Bracken rushed Chloe to the shower, I scooped what sea monkeys I could find back into their container, added more water, and threw my algae green rug back in the washer. Chloe sobbed from the shower, "But I love my sea monkeys. I don't want them to be dead." I was not hopeful.

On Friday, the water was still very murky, and the life status of the sea monkeys could not be determined.

On Saturday, the water had cleared, and two adult female sea monkeys could be seen swimming around. One of them had a very full egg sac, thus ensuring future generations of sea monkeys in the Mannion home. I called Chloe in and together we rejoiced over their survival.

On Sunday, I wrote the annual Christmas letter, anecdotally mentioning how swift action had saved the sea monkeys.

On Monday morning, I got out of the shower and heard splashing water in the kitchen. I walked in to find Addie on a chair, pouring the water from the sea monkeys back and forth into empty cocoa cups (and all over the counters, floor, dishwasher and rug). She looked over at me as she slurped her chocolate sea monkey water and said, "Mmmm, delicious." I'm still not sure if I should laugh, cry, or throw up. I am pretty sure, though, that the sea monkeys are not going to make it this time.