Friday, August 31, 2007

Everything She Does is Magic... Sorta

Today I had a half-day off from work and got to spend it with J. It's been awesome. We mostly just lolled around the house, playing with her dollhouse and reading books and eating ice cream. We found a little table and chair set at the thrift store, too.

And then there's those moments where I am thinking to myself "Really? This is my child??" and I'm laughing (or cringing...):
1) When she brushes my hair and then styles it so that it's covering my entire face - and she smiles like, yeah, that's it - now she looks good.
2) When she takes a piece of jewelry and tries to shove it my ear to make it into an earring
3) When she shoves her hand down my shirt in the grocery store screaming "BOOB! MY BOOB!"
4) When she's "feeding" me and the food she brings to me is an old, nasty scrubbing sponge (where did she find that?!) and I have to not only pretend it looks delicious but she wants me to pretend to eat it, too
5) When she gets horrified at the wet, cut grass that sticks to her toes and flip-flops, but has no problem tasting dirt
6) When she plops books on the computer, like she is now, when for five seconds I am not paying attention to her, making it impossible - almost- to type

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

"No pants, Mommy: DRESS!"

...And so, the pictures from daycare that day feature the little girl running and playing in her big dress (from grandma jones).

Impressively, she demonstrated an amazing ability to climb around the playground in that dress with more agility than the boy much older than her with whom she was scampering...

Go, girl!

Three's Company (four)

Last night, as per usual on Tuesday nights, Daddy was at a city meeting, so Josephine and I took Billy on a walk to the playground by ourselves.

She's just started saying recently "Daddy gone" or "Billy gone" or asking "where Daddy?", though she doesn't quite get the concept, as sometimes she'll say that and still call for Daddy or Billy when they're not there (Billy hiding from Josephine). (Yesterday, too, I asked where Billy had gone and she told me quite confidently, "Beach. Billy beach.")

But her concept of us is definitely as a three (or four) person family. She always points out Daddy's toothbrush when she's brushing her teeth (and making me brush my teeth). And at the playground, after I got her going in her swing, she pointed at the another swing - "Mommy swing" - meaning - "go swing, mommy." So I did. Then she pointed at the swing next to me - "Daddy swing" and nodded her head. She was reserving a seat for him.

This really touched me, and made me feel more than ever that our family unit and our life together is truly blessed.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Step Stool Fun, Etc.

Moving On Up

Josephine gets a new step stool so she can climb up and wash her hands and brush her teeth all by herself- and she's so happy about it!

I usually have to brush my teeth with her, too, and sometimes Daddy joins in as well. We all have great breath these days!

Of course, we have a drought in our area right now, so I have to be careful to make sure she's not just running the tap to play with the water...

Curly Joe
We spent the weekend rearranging the living room/dining room area - cleaned out a lot of yucky furniture, but added this nice red papasan. We also removed the television - we don't watch it anymore upstairs anyway. The result - a cleaner, more comfortable, human-feeling space! Here's J with her new doll. I'm hoping they'll 'bond'. I trimmed her bangs again. She's been called Shirley Temple a couple times recently - I was, too, at her age...!

This girl loves her shoes.
She got a new pair of running shoes with Daddy on Saturday... these are some winter boots she found and started strutting about in... The frown has been making its appearance more and more these days, but she's still a happy kid most of the time!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Friday Photos

Some pictures from J's daycare... Meanwhile, J can answer the following:
"What's your name?" "JOS." "How old are you going to be?" "TWO." And she holds up her hand fiddling with her fingers.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


It's her new favorite word.

She's like a little explorer putting down flags, waiting to see if any natives will come out and fight her claim... Like my mom said, laying claim to territory, and then looking up at us to see if we will question or fight her...

Of course, what I want to do is give her every little thing her heart desires. She can have it all! But in reality, she can't, and setting the boundaries and telling her no and then waiting out the consequent temper tantrum is what I have to do.

Last night, Jos was infuriated that I wouldn't let her push her new baby stroller into a busy street. "MINE!" she screamed, clawing the air toward the street, which was apparently, in her view, "MINE!". At one point she was rolling around like a nutter on the gravel, wailing in hysterics. No amount of cajoling, distraction techniques (I must have been quite a site, trying to do dances there), or strictness could move her (and me with belly and dog and two strollers didn't have the physical strength to fight her).

Also lately she doesn't like her clothes being taken off, because those are also "MINE!"
She'll bundle up a dirty shirt or dress and cling to it for a while, daring me to attempt an extraction.

Sometimes, but not very often, I do give in. Sometimes what is "MINE!" really IS hers. And sometimes, like with the baby seal she had tucked under her arm like a football the other day at Big Lots, three dollars vs. an in-store meltdown was an easy call (the seal is now officially "MINE!").

It's emotionally exhausting, but I am full of compassion when my daughter is screaming, distraught and angry, because I know this is part of the process of coming to terms with what it means to be a human being. It's something we're all still working on, at one level or another. And there's plenty of dictators and thieves and other adults out there who never learned the boundaries of what is Mine and what is definitely someone else's. So it's a serious lesson for me, in more ways than one, to confront this toddler's rage, and to see elements of my own.


We went to Target the other night for one thing and there was a toy sale and we ended up getting a couple things for Josephine for her birthday (October) and Christmas - a small wooden train set and a wooden kitchen, two things she loves playing with at other places.

So if you're a person who buys presents for Josephine, and you come across a sale or a yard sale (second hand is always appreciated and encouraged!), I thought you might like to know some of things she loves to play with /needs upcoming (please think this is helpful and not a demand or order or anything! we are happy also with no presents and just your love!) :

  • Wooden fruit/food - the kind you can "cut" are really cool (14.95 on
  • Kitchenesque accessories - to go with the kitchen
  • Books - always!
  • Puzzles - has a few from last year, loves them
  • Bath toys - right now all we have are ducks and some little cups - would also love this 'flo' thing that covers the faucet and shoots water out to rinse - really cool
  • Cars, trucks that do things (diggers, fire engines)
  • Dollhouse furniture - she's got a mix of secondhand stuff, some wood, some fisher price
  • Doll clothes - her new baby doll has one dress
  • Easel - prefer wood, not plastic
  • Art supplies - anything, everything - she loves it all - clay, paper, paint...
  • Clothes - right now she's between 18 months and 24 months size - still only about 25 lbs - she'll be needing winter clothes; we have some overalls and pants
  • Any kind of cubby-hole-type furniture/organizer - she loves to organize items into boxes and holes and such
By the way, I love being a parent. I mean, I am really really happy having a child. I don't think I say this often enough, so I thought I would say it now - Josephine is so much fun, and such a sweetheart, and being a family with her just makes me swell with joy.

The yucky first-trimester hormones are obviously wearing off!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Baby Loves the Water - Photos!

View this new slideshow of photos from our trip to Virginia Beach with my very good friend Robin and to the lake, where we celebrated Sean's birthday and enjoyed a dance by cousin Allie and her two friends. There's also some messy food photos - I was trying to capture these hilarious faces Josie was making. (It doesn't seem possible, but she's getting more and more expressive and comedic every day.)

She loved the water - I mean, both in the hotel pool and at the beach, she tended to leap into the water, hands outstretched, ready to swim. I'm glad she's not afraid, but I sure was (hee).

You'll see photos in the slideshow from the acquarium - so fun! The otters were adorable, sleek and curly; I never knew otters were so entertaining!

Here's Joby (as we sometimes call her) on the little miniature carousel at the arcade. She was extremely serious as she went "around and around!" (one of her favorite phrases).

We don't have any photos of it, but while the dance show was going on, Jos kept sidling onto the "stage" and doing her own little boogie... it was hard to keep her out of the fray... very cute.

Our excursions are mostly done for the summer - and now with the drought going on here, some of the local pools are closed... but it's been lovely! We're hoping to take a movement class this fall. Sean and I are ready for cooler weather...

One of my favorite moments from this last week: While brushing my hair, she went and brought me a book to read to keep me occupied while she brushed!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Coming soon to a Josephine near you...

... a baby sister or brother! Due February 10th. We have told Josephine, and her new favorite book is about a little girl like her getting a baby brother (only they are brothers). She pats my tummy affectionately.

Keep us in your thoughts and prayers!

Friday, August 3, 2007

County Fair

So, we forgot the camera. So you'll have to use your imagination to visualize Josephine running with goats, giggling at the sheep, absolutely wowed by the inquisitive, slobbery nose of the cow... It was a gorgeous evening - peach-red sun smoldering in the heavy, hot sky over the sweet hills, and llamas and bunnies and horses and french fries, and balloons sailing into the sky...

Sean and I were trying very hard not to annoy the country folk with our city ignorance, but we did get into a debate over whether ponies are different than horses. I said ponies are baby horses, he said ponies are a separate breed. We were too afraid to ask anyone, so we had to wait till we got home to check Wikipedia (Sean was right - I am horrified to realize I've been mistaken all these years). But I was right when I saw a cow and said it was a cow and Sean said it was a goat. It was a cow. It was all very funny.

I also had to hide being grossed out when the pig peed in its own water dish. (YUCK!)

Josephine was too small for most of the rides, but we did try the carousel, and she loved it - though we couldn't help noticing she seemed more interested in the man running the works of the thing, figuring out what he was doing, than in just enjoying the ride.

Next time we'll bring a camera. And maybe an encyclopedia.