Monday, November 29, 2010

Memories of Things Past

Recently, while I chopped tomatoes for bruchetta and the Salad ate their dinners, I recounted bits and pieces of my pregnancy with them. It was quiet in the kitchen before I started talking and the hum of the refrigerator reminded me of the one R bought me to keep in our bedroom. It was literally one hour after I was released from the hospital after my first bout with preterm labor, that R hauled kitchen appliances into our master bedroom. And so for the four months of bedrest, our room was like a hotel, complete with the white noise of a refrigerator and soft lights of the microwave time clock.

I told them that when I got cholestasis, the soles of my feet itched so badly that I thought I'd lose my mind. It only happened at night and would wake me from a deep sleep. I'd spend an hour scratching my feet on our bedroom rug. I often seized the opportunity to drink in some more of the 3200 calories a day the doctors told me to consume during a triplet pregnancy, so I'd gulp down a giant glass of orange juice. What's weird is I never really liked orange juice and have not wanted any since.

That time when I was pregnant must be on my subconscious lately. Maybe it's the time of year. The last time I was allowed to drive myself was the day before Halloween, 2006. I remember because with my last bit of freedom, I drove myself to Target to buy candy for trick or treaters.

Or maybe it's on my mind because not long ago, we drove past the hospital where the Salad was born. I laughed with my mom, as we recounted stories of her poor wheel chair driving skills. The walk from the parking garage to the high risk doctor was just too long for me, so for the last 2.5 months of my pregnancy, whoever had driven me to the hospital that day would have to roll me to the office. Many, many people thought I was in labor, asking in the elevator, "This is it, huh? The big day!" No, I would tell them, I'm only 27 weeks along. "Oh!" they'd say stealing glances at my gigantically huge belly and the wheel chair, and stare at the door or the ceiling uncomfortably, until they could run from the embarrassment. It always cracked me up.

Because, I'm mean like that.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Hat Hair

I took the Salad to get haircuts after gymnastics 2 Fridays ago. I had been thinking for weeks they needed them, but the funk struck our house. We were down with the sickness for the month of October. I guess those 4 weeks in October don't account for the 14 weeks since their last haircuts . . . but, I digress.

I knew it was time when M saw his reflection in the dining room window the other night and said "Mommy? Am I wearing a helmet?"

Monday, November 22, 2010


We're on a Super Why! kick lately. The Salad, especially A, loves the interaction with the cartoon. I constantly hear her shouting at the TV, "That's a B!" Or "There! There! I see super letters!" Now, here's the part I love. See that picture up there? Everyday, a discussion ensues about which Salad ingredient is which character. The consensus is that A's hair looks like Wonder Red, the girl in the purple roller skates, so A is Wonder Red. M is a boy, Whyatt is a boy, so M is Whyatt. That one's a given. Here's where is gets funny. S thinks she looks like that princess. See that one on the right, there? The African American one? Yep. My blond-haired, blue-eyed, fair-skinned child identifies herself as an African American cartoon princess. I love that she doesn't see any difference.

But here. Here is where it gets disturbing. The pig with the hat on the left? Alpha Pig.

That's me.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Money, money, money, money. MONEY!

Dang. I'm behind in my blogging. I have a bunch of stuff I want to write about, though. It just never happens. I need to keep this up, so that 1. I don't feel guilty and 2. the Salad has a record of their childhood. 'Cause God knows 1. baby books were never Made 2. I have a Memory like a sieve and 3. I haven't printed out pictures in 3 years, 3 Months.

Anyway, back in the beginning of October, we studied the letter M. I used Money to base our study on, thinking the Salad would love playing with change. I was right. To begin our studies, I dumped the giant change jar that R and I keep in our bedroom and let the Salad fill their change purses. We took our Money bags down to the kitchen table, where we sorted quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies. We took one coin in each denomination and glued them to a piece of cardboard. Then we took crayons and Made coin rubbings.
The next day, we conducted a scientific experiment. What best cleans pennies? Water and soap? Nope. Vinegar and salt? Nope. Turns out, if you've got a bunch of dirty pennies, grab a giant bottle of ketchup and squeeze. Chemical reaction between the copper and the acid cleans 'em right up. The Salad was hesitant at first, looking at Me like I had lost My Mind when I told them to get their hands in the ketchup and start rubbing. But once they had carte blanche, they dug right in. After quiet time on Wednesday, we read a few simple preschool books about Money transactions. They went like this - You want something that I own. You give Me Money. I give you My goods. In this case the "goods" was a bag of candy that I hide in the cabinet for the occasional treat. Then I had the kids gather their Money back in their change purses. I spread out the candy and we played candy store. They looked over My goods, decided what they wanted, asked how Much it was, and counted the correct amount of pennies. Seriously, we did this for 30 Minutes. And by the way, I am an awesome business person, because I was getting like 7 pennies for 1 M&M. Donald Trump, your next Apprentice is on her way!
The next Morning, we took what Money they had left and headed to the bank. The Salad was thrilled to dump change into a coin counter, take their receipt and head to the teller for cash. With our dollars bills in hand, we drove straight to 5 Below. R's birthday was in the Middle of October and I thought this was a perfect opportunity to put our studies into action. M had been saying for a Month that he wanted to get R a rubber duck for his birthday, A headed right for the sunglass display and S thought binoculars would be the perfect gift.

As an real time update to this post, I want to note that everyday for the last Month, the Salad has asked if the Candy store is open. It very rarely is ;)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Halloween? Fooled you!

I know you are eager for a Halloween post. You probably mentioned it today, in fact. "You know, she never said what that adorable Salad dressed up as?" Well, you'll have to wait a touch longer. I will throw you this bone though . . .

While these pictures were taken on Halloween, these were not their costumes. Nope. This is just how we roll . . . when we hang out at Aunt Jen's house, at least.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Space. These are our voyages . . .

Our study of the letter S focused on the broader Subject of Space and all things related. We read lots of books, all of which had to be revised by me on the spot, due to the Shunning of Pluto. Space is a hard enough concept to grasp, let alone dwarf planets. Our library apparently needs to update their Solar System literature. We also did lots of crafts with glitter. Anyone heard that Saying, "Glitter is like the herpes of the craft world."? It never goes away. Seriously. I found Some in S's applesauce bowl this morning. We studied Space 2 weeks ago.

I choose the week of October 18th as Space week because of the orionid meteor Shower. I had delusional plans that the children would nap and then be up late enough that they'd See Shooting Stars. I know. I'm insane. The peak was supposed to be just before dawn. My own eyes have never Seen the time "just before dawn." How did I think this was going to happen? Insanity is my best guess. I Showed them a four Second clip on youtube instead. The wonders of modern technology.

The Franklin Institute has a kid-friendly introduction to Space, a Show featuring Elmo and Big Bird. It Starts at 9:45. AM. Really, Franklin Institute? Where are these moms with Small children that are making it into the city by 9:45? Try 10:30. Then maybe I would have made it on time. But instead we arrived at 10:15. No big deal, I thought, we'll look around in the Space Command exhibit until 12:30 when we can go to The Sky Tonight Show. It should be the Same, right? Except that it wasn't the Same. It was dark. S got Scared and asked, nay, demanded to leave right then.

So we left and I treated them to $6.00 astronaut food from the gift Shop. It was met with mixed reviews.
We ended the week by enjoying a viewing of Fly Me to the Moon, complete with PJs and popcorn.

Friday, November 5, 2010

It's my carpet and I'll cry if I want to.

While R and I dress the Salad into their PJs for the night, I usually flip on "Max and Ruby" and give them a small straw cup of milk and a bedtime snack. Wednesday night was a bit different, 'cause R was late so I was doing bedtime alone. I turned on the TV, gave them their milk, changed them into their jammies, and ran upstairs to get their beds ready. When I came back down, I flopped myself down to snuggle with S, who was laying on the couch. I jumped up when I felt the milk soak through my jeans. "S! You should have told me so I could clean this!" and ran to get a kitchen towel. I gathered myself on the way down the steps, thinking to myself, there was a proverb just for moments like this, "No sense crying over spilled milk."

I cleaned up the milk and went to change my pants. When I came back into the room, I noticed milk pouring from A's tipped over cup, down the side of the lego container she was using as a coffee table. "A, stand your milk up!" and ran to get a kitchen towel. I gathered myself on the way down the steps, thinking to myself, there was a proverb just for moments like this, "No sense crying over spilled milk."

When I got there, I noticed a trail of milk, leading from the seat M had had on the floor to the seat he had taken on the couch. Sometimes if I screw the lids on the cups too tightly, the pressure makes milk shoot from the straw. And that's exactly what had happened last night. Of course. "M, give me your cup! It's leaking!" I ran to the kitchen to unscrew the lid over the sink and rinse it off. I gathered myself on the way down the steps, thinking to myself, there was a proverb just for moments like this, "No sense crying over spilled milk."

Wait a minute . . . didn't I just write that?! . . . TWICE?!

As I was down on my knees for the third time in 8 minutes, it dawned on me this proverb was for the spillers, not the spiller-cleaner-uppers. For the spillers, it means, "Don't cry, mommy's gonna clean that up and get you more milk." For the spiller-cleaner-uppers, it means, "Don't waste your tears now, they're just gonna spill it again in 3.7 seconds. Cry then." I mean, I get it, they're kids, they're gonna spill milk, mash play-doh into the carpet, get lollipops on their brand new Gap shirts.
But really, this was getting ridiculous . . .

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Party like a Preschooler

The Salad hosted their first Halloween party last week. The previous 2 days were filled with party prep. I'm kinda loving this age, 3 almost 4. They want to be around me. They want to please me. They want to help me. So when I asked them to Windex the front door, put away their train set for the day and Swiffer the kitchen floor, I had an army of eager helpers. Not that I'm taking advantage or anything.

We started the festivities with a dramatic Halloween book reading, while 12 preschoolers munched on freshly roasted pumpkin seeds, cranberries, candy corn and apple puffs. We did an easy spider craft, before heading downstairs for the piece de resistance. A haunted house made from huge boxes that the Salad and I had driven to the Raymour and Flanigan distribution center in New Jersey on Tuesday for. A long way for boxes? Maybe. A short trip for hours of enjoyment? Definitely! I spent an hour today popping out from behind the walls of our haunted house, scaring the bejesus out of my Salad. I laughed so hard that I almost peed myself. M laughed so hard that he did pee himself. Good times.

We munched on pumpkin shaped peanut butter sandwiches for lunch. And in a surprising twist, the apples turned out to be the favorite part of the party. I scooped out huge honeyscrisp apples with a melon baller and offered chocolate, caramel and pumpkin spice flavored Cool Whip for dipping. I've said it before and I'll say it again - it's all in the presentation. Offer bite sized morsels, speared with tooth picks and a variety of dips, my kids will eat almost anything.
We had a bean bag toss and painted some pumpkins, before ending the day passing out treat bags to our friends on their way out. While we were waving good bye to our playgroup friends, M spotted our neighborhood friends, driving by the house. M flagged down their nanny and before I could stop him, he shouted a hearty invite to "Come up and play later!" So after an hour's rest, we had more guests to play in our haunted house and drink apple cider with.
I let the Salad stay up a tiny bit later than usual, just because I was enjoying their cute smiles and animated stories. When I asked her what her favorite part of the day was, S said "Every part was my favorite!" For once, the day seemed too short.