Sunday, October 30, 2011

Words I heard.

A : Mommy, I banged my chin on S's bottom!

M: Mommy, I just love your hugs and kisses.  (accompanied by exaggerated puckered lips.)

S: Star light, star bright, first star I see tonight, I wish I may, I wish I might, have this wish I wish tonight.  I wish Daddy could come home right now from his trip (to Las Vegas.  For his birthday.  With his buddies. . . OK.  I jest.  To Las Vegas.  For "work." With his "co-workers.")

M:  Mommy!  Look! I love my Captain America undies!  He's throwing a Frisbee!

A: Look!  Angry birds!  (pointing to two kids wearing Angry Birds costumes at the Halloween Parade)
Me:  A, how do you know they are angry birds? (I was confused because we are not an Apple house)
A:  'Cause they are birds.  And they have angry eyes? (In her head that was followed by "Duh, Mom".)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Playdough Playdate

This past winter, after a 5 day bout with The Stomach Virus From Hell, I brought the Salad into the bathroom for a little craft project.  Some of them still looked a bit peckish and I wanted them close to the toilet, should the need arise.  So I covered the floors in plastic bags, lined up bottles of dye and told them to have at some white shirts.  When they were through, we had some dye left over.  I lined the bottles up on the desk, next to our computer, in the preschool room.  There they have stayed for the last 8 months.  Out in the open.  Exposed to the Salad.  And yet, by some miracle, they haven't been touched.  No mysterious magenta stains have shown up.  No little hands covered in green dye.  Thanks, Salad.  You guys are the best.

Ok.  Back to my story.  Last week, I decided I was tempting fate leaving them there much longer and invited our playgroup over for a tie dye party.  The weather has been glorious and I thought we'd do it on the lawn.  But of course Wednesday rolled around and it rained, so I had to make some quick changes.  4 different types of homemade playdough.  I printed out the recipes and Grammy pre-measured the ingredients.  We plopped down at the kitchen table, put a tray of ingredients and a mixing bowl in front of a group of 3 kids and told them to go to town.  It kept them happy and occupied for 30 minutes.  But it was not pretty.  In fact, it was down right ugly.  Though it smelled amazing, as one of the recipes called for 3.5 cups of peanut butter. 
In retrospect, indoor tie dye may have been less messy.  Oh well . . . hindsight and all.  

Monday, October 24, 2011

Nothing says "I love you" like a Fire.

After a crazy busy day of gymnastics, a playdate with Seth at Linvilla and a surprise Grammy visit, we relaxed by our chiminea on Friday night.  I surprised the Salad by starting the fire on our porch, giving them marshmallows to toast and hot chocolate to sip.  They must have thanked me 3 times a piece.  They had the same reaction that I would have had if someone had said, "Hey, here's $2000, just 'cause I like you!" 
They had that same reaction when I picked them up from school yesterday and said, "Salad, guess what we're gonna do now - vacuum out our van at the gas station!"  There were whoops and cheers of joys.  No lie.  S did a back flip.  Fine.  That was a lie.  But there were whoops and cheers.

As an example of my ever present fear of the future, I thought to myself "To get that same reaction from a 16 year old, you'd probably have to hand them keys and say 'Enjoy that Dodge Charger I just bought you!'"

I'm frightened.  Can you tell?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Not for the faint of heart.

Longwoods Gardens.  It's serene.  It's beautiful.  It's full of dangerous places.  I guess that last part is only true if you set 5 preschoolers and 1 toddler loose on the grounds. 

Grammy, avert your eyes.

Dropping "poop" (aka dirt plugs from an aerator) down a drain big enough to swallow the Salad whole.
Climbing the trees in the Topiary Garden.  Anyone know if this is actually allowed
Scraping snails from the side of a pond. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Artsy Fartsy (as my dad would say)

I'll admit that when the Salad was born, my slight OCD tendencies turned into full blown OCD tendencies.  I needed order.  I ran this house like a military base for 19 months. 

Then, one day when the Salad was 19 months old, I spotted Halloween stickers at the Acme, threw a pack of construction paper into our cart and ran home to make art with my babies. 

Thus began our love affair with art.

At first, I tried to impress those full blown OCD tendencies onto my toddlers.  I wanted the matching cap to go on the appropriate marker.  I wanted pumpkins to be round, skies to be blue, faces to have noses.   Perhaps through shear exhaustion, those OCD tendencies began to fade.  Now, I delight in square fruit, purple suns and the many, many pictures of our loved ones, sans facial features.  So long as there is a lid on a marker, I could care less what color it is.  In fact, if we should get so lucky to find a blue marker with an orange cap I can't grab the color wheel fast enough.  Talk about teachable moments!  Complementary colors at their finest!

3 years after those first Salad-made Halloween cards were created, we make some kind of art every day. For the last 2 years they have had any craft supply they would like to use at their disposal 24 hours a day. So long as they keep it in the preschool room, they are free to create what they want, whenever they want. Most mornings, they head straight there before they even come into my room.  Yes, it makes for a crazy messy preschool room. So should you ever visit and the door to the left at the top of the steps is closed, please leave it closed. And poor R may step on beads every morning for the next few years when he enters the room. And many times I have left the house trailing a piece of scotch tape on my shoe, unbeknownst to me.  These are small prices to pay for a Salad that loves to create.

Here is a one side of a conversation that I have had 547 times in the last 3 years. 

"Oh, wow (insert Salad ingredient here)!  Tell me, who did you draw?  . . . . Uh huh.  And what is this mark right here? . . . . Oh really?  Poop, huh?  . . . . and those are what again?  Privates.  Of course.  I should have known.  What's this dot above the privates?  Right!  Right.  Well, everyone has a belly button." 

Thank God I've eased up some. 

Otherwise, their bedroom door would be just that.  A door.  Rather than the gallery it is today.
Otherwise, I'd never have stumbled into this "Robot Army" one morning not too long ago.
Otherwise, I'd never have heard S give me this description of a picture she drew "It's you and I trick or treating.  I'm a ballerina and you are a potato.  And these buttons I glued on are our candy."

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

September 18th - September 25th, 2011

That week in our house:

1. M may have dropped a luggage lock into a toilet.
2. The Salad awarded me a star for Speaking Kindly on our behaviour charts.
3. We may have had to duct tape Jesus back to a cross.  A carries said "duct tape Jesus" around the house.
4. We hosted a moving away party for our friends Rithik and Vishal.
5. We went to a birthday party for "baby Thomas", who is no longer a baby.
6. S wore a green skirt, brown heart dress and blue jeggings to afore-mentioned birthday party.
7. A wore snow boots to the same party.
8. The Salad set up their first lemonade stand.  Between myself, R, Grammy, McNulty and our generous mailman, they made 6 dollars.
9. M has taken to using mousse to "make his hair spiky."
10. We took the trolley into Media, where R treated us to breakfast at the dinner.
11.  S took and failed her second hearing test.  Giant hole in eardrum to blame. 
12.  We went to a Greek Festival and ate the most delicious loukoumades.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Help a sistah out.

S:  Mommy!  Help!  I got my tiara stuck in my hair!
M:  Here, S, here.  I can get it for you. (jumping up before I could get to my feet)
A:  Let me help too, M. (crowding around S)
M:  Ok.  Ok.  Hmmm.  I think we need scissors.
A:  I'll go get them.
Me:   Noooooooo!  No.  No.  I can get it without scissors. 
M:  Ok.  Maybe you need my screwdriver?  (inching toward his tool bench)
Me:  Um.  No thanks, buddy.  I'll just get try with my hands.
S:  Nevermind.  I'll get it.  (starting to panic, ripping out her tiara and a small clump of hair.)