Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Birthday highs and lows

So after an exciting birthday start last Thursday of opening a few presents and blueberry pancakes, I decided it to ramp up the birthday fun by, yes, running errands all morning. Poor Molly quietly protested from the back seat. All she wanted to do was to see if Teddy was home and wanted to play. After two stops I felt so guilty that we quit and came home to see if Teddy was around. We eventually tracked him down, as well as our little friend Rose, and Molly spent a delightful afternoon playing with her friends.

I don't regret this turn of events even though:
a. I didn't make it to the grocery store all day, meaning I didn't have the ingredients to make Molly's special request birthday dinner of broccoli soup. In fact, I didn't want to make her leave her friends a minute before it was necessary, meaning we weren't home in time to make any dinner at all. Molly didn't want to go out, so we ended up eating nasty canned soup out of our emergency supply stash for dinner. Worst birthday dinner ever.
And more importantly,
b. Yesterday morning we woke to the sound of Molly retching in the hallway at 5 a.m. The poor kid didn't keep down a speck of food all day, and hardly any liquids. I just found out today that Teddy also had a stomach bug yesterday, which apparently is going around his and Rose's preschool. That birthday play date must have been where Molly caught it. Awesome.
Fortunately Molly is back to her old self today and we're still on track for holiday travel.

On a brighter note, we did manage to have quite a bit of birthday fun this weekend before the stomach bug caught up to us. Oma and Grandpa came on Friday and we had loads of fun opening presents, going out to dinner, eating ice cream cake and more homemade pancakes. We did eventually make the birthday broccoli soup, too.

Here's Molly rocking out to her musical gift from Kim (wearing her new purple dress from Beppe).

General birthday happiness.
The funny looking ice cream cake I made on Friday.

We can't wait to see everybody for Christmas!! Just a few more days!!!!!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Birthday morning

Just a few presents this morning before blueberry pancakes birthday breakfast ...

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Birthday party

We celebrated Molly's birthday yesterday with Lex and Eve at the candlepin bowling alley, then back home for pink cupcakes and party hats. Molly was so excited before the party about what she was going to wear, the party plates, the hats and all the details. Once Lex and Eve got here, it was all about playing with them. What a perfect party!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

The holiday season begins

We had our Christmas tree decorating mini celebration last night. Here she is playing with one of her Daddy's childhood ornaments. It does not, she discovered, fit on her foot.

Today she put on a Christmas dress in the morning and kept it on all day. Here she is this evening, playing with Harry and avoiding the camera, in the pretty dress (thank you, Eve).

Molly is definitely more aware of and excited about Christmas this year than last year. Tonight we got ready for Sinterklaas. She remembered from last year that Sinterklaas brings animal crackers and was so excited about this that a little last-minute elf work was required. 

She's been going to bed really smoothly lately (knock on wood), but tonight she called out "Mommy, I need to tell you something." I was busy so Jim went in. Molly told him, "I think Santa Claus is on his way right now." That was all.

Here's another thing she was way into last year that she has rediscovered, The Twelve Days of Christmas.

She also has large portions of Twas the Night Before Christmas memorized -- not surprising, considering how many times we've read it in the past week. Our Christmas book selection is somewhat limited now since the nativity story made Molly cry the other night. She got deeply upset about the idea that Mary and Joseph had to sleep in a barn. Now she doesn't want to read those stories anymore. That's only the third time a book has ever upset her so much (the others being the time she got upset that the mother changed into a tree in Runaway Bunny and the time the characters had to leave their family members at the end of a trip to Africa in a library book). Poor kid. I never see it coming and I'm always surprising that seemingly benign ideas in a story can be so upsetting.

And lastly, as Molly gets closer to turning 3 her play has become even more involved and fun to witness -- isn't this so much fun?? One morning she told me this was a baby monkey and spent a long time putting him to bed. I'm glad we still have time to just hang out a lot, even when the holiday craziness is upon us.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Decorating the tree quote

"This is Santa's magic sock" - Molly
"Does it give him magic powers?" - Julie
"No he puts it on his foot." - Molly

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

New friends

Molly has been making new buddies lately -- friends who are closer to her age and don't push and hit and constantly fight over toys, which is always nice. She ran over to me at a play group at Devens this morning to say "I made a friend" and then ran away again. It turned out to be a girl who used to come to our neighborhood play group when Molly was a baby -- funny that of more than 20 kids in the room she gravitated toward somebody she actually already knew but didn't remember. I think Molly even thought to ask the girl's name (Ana), though she didn't remember the answer. :)

Here's another relatively new friend, Jadon, a boy in our mommy-and-me class on Mondays. Isn't he a doll? If we choose this preschool, they would be in the same class in the fall.

Together they're really shaking up the quiet Waldorf vibe in the classroom. This week they sat together during circle time and distracted the rest of the class all through the puppet show by doing some sort of hopping thing. I had to go sit behind Molly to try to get a grip on it and she looked at me and very loudly told me to "go back over there," which everybody thought was funny. Fortunately the teacher is absolutely unflappable and told us two moms afterward that it's just their exciting 3-year-old energy. She's going to spice up the puppet show next time for their benefit. Sounds good to me!

Monday, November 29, 2010


Photos from our Thanksgiving trip...

Molly meets Oma's new alpacas.

Cousin fun at the diner.

Getting a little close to the TV at Ganny and Papa's.

Wearing Christmas tie dyes on Trolly morning.

A little down time with Grandpa.   

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Molly says...

"Why do raisins come from grapes?"
Me: "What do you mean?"
Molly: "Why do they come from grapes and not, um, raisin trees?"

And this morning, right after she woke up:
Molly: "Mommy, how old are you?"
Me: "I'm 34."
(no response)
Me: "I was 33 but then I had my birthday and I turned 34. Is that old?"
Molly: (thinking) "No. It's new. The other number was old, but that's new."

Monday, November 15, 2010

Who's the baby?

We're just getting over a phase where I repeatedly hear the question, "Mommy, can babies (take off their shoes, go potty, crawl, put on their shirt, etc., etc.)?" At first this was cute. Then I realized it was always a prelude to Molly insisting that she can't do those things for herself at the moment because, "Mommy, I'm a baby."

At times I've been tempted to lie and tell her that yes, babies do use the potty (Some do, right? Define baby.) More often, it works to tell her no, babies cannot spoon their own ice cream into their mouths, but babies can't eat ice cream, so if she's a baby and can't use her own spoon, then she can't eat ice cream at all.

Anyway, this whole playing baby thing seems to be fading. So it was funny when I got out of the shower today and found Molly most of the way zipped into this sleeper -- size 18 months. For a kid on the tall end of 3T, it's amazing that she got it on.

She can't quite stand up straight.

There, it's a little easier with her knees bent.
She tried a 9-month sleeper, too, but didn't get very far. Weird as it sounds, I think this was less about pretending to be a baby and more about actually getting ready for little sister -- trying out the stuff to see what it's like. My belly got lots of big sister hugs today. So sweet.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Birthday fun

As usual, I forgot my camera and missed all sorts of fabulous photos yesterday on our visit to Vermont -- the Molly sandwich between Lex and Eve, the giggle fits, the princess outfits. Fortunately Lex captured the princess party. (See his photos here).
We filled up on cookies, cake and pizza. Molly got to go to a playground with her friends, I got to go to Joann's. I can't think of a better birthday party!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

It's a ....


Everything is healthy and normal. Hooray!!!!!

Pictures of the little lady...

The white spot above her face is her hand.

And here are her feet...

The baby got wiggly when the sonographer was taking the foot pictures and seemed to be playing a game -- dangling the foot out and then pulling it back just as she was snapping the shot over and over. The woman said, "this one's going to give you a run for your money!"

Hurray for another feisty girl!!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Last week out of the blue Molly said she wanted to switch bedrooms. We'd talked about this a little with her before, knowing our office/growlry would have to be converted into a bedroom for either Molly or the new baby. It seemed like it would be too disruptive to switch Molly's room though, so we haven't pushed it.

Anyway, last week she was pretty serious about switching so Jim suggested we move just her bed in for the weekend to try it out. I honestly thought she wouldn't want to sleep there when night time rolled around. Boy was I wrong. She's been in there four nights now and hasn't once expressed any regret or hesitation.

So we spent the weekend boxing up books and figuring out where to put the computer and generally shrinking our grown-up space in this house to crowded corners. And Molly gets this...

Really she's got two rooms at this point because most of her stuff is still in the old bedroom. And all we've got a bunch of boxes in the basement and a computer in the kitchen. Oh, well. At least now we're making a space for the new baby, which is fun. Two days until the ultrasound and I'll get to dig in to all Molly's old baby stuff in the basement and either get rid of the girl stuff or unpack it. Yay!!!!

As I was getting pictures off the camera, I discovered yet another series of Molly self-portraits. Here's just a sampling. Kinda freaky when you're not expecting it.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween night

Rather than eat more of Molly's candy while she innocently takes a nap, I figured I should post some pictures from last night. (Oh wait, I can do both. Mmmmm.)

It was not much above 30 degree here by the end of the night, but Molly stayed out long enough to bring back quite a haul of goodies. It didn't seem like we had as many trick-or-treaters as some years, but we did go through about 120 bags of Skittles and a bag of Blow Pops, so I guess it was a good crowd.

Here's Molly playing in the basement in the afternoon. She said, "Wait here, I'll be back in a minute" and ran upstairs to get her witch hat -- getting into character early, I guess.

All day long she was asking if it was dinner time yet, because I told her we go trick-or-treating after dinner. Finally, we had dinner and it was time to get dressed. She wanted Daddy to do it.

I decided not to make Molly's costume this year. We just grabbed one off the rack at Target. I've been twitching a little about that decision because it seems like everyone I know was sewing for Halloween this year. The mom across the street made an amazing bumble bee costume and a lady bug costume, Melissa next door made a dementor robe from Harry Potter for one of her older boys.

I guess my only consolation was that it was so cold, any homemade witch costume would have been covered in a jacket anyway, like so ... (here they are heading out to tackle the neighborhood while I stay home to pass out candy)

 Notice the really cool rotten effect we got on our pumpkins. Guess we carved a little early. :)

About 45 minutes later, the doorbell rang and a cold little girl came inside. She made it quite a bit farther this year than last year. Jim said she probably would have kept going, but he called it off when his fingers grew numb.
 Sampling the treats before bed.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Preschool, etc.

Well, the search is on for a preschool for Molly next fall. It seems so far away -- the baby will be 6 months old by then -- but the schools are holding open houses now and applications are due in Jan/Feb. So here we go!

We've been doing a "Mommy and Me" class at a Waldorf preschool with our neighbor Rhys and his mom this fall. It's fun, but aside from all the toys being made of natural materials and the snacks being all natural (buckwheat muffins and herbal tea), we're not really clear on what makes this different from other schools. It's the same routine: free play, snack, circle time, playground. There just aren't any plastic toys. They do puppet-style story telling, though, and that's really cool. The kids are captivated!

We went to a pumpkin decorating party at another preschool, one the kids across the street go to and love. It was more traditional, with way more stuff in the classroom and a much better equipped playground. Molly says she likes that one better because the playground's better. Noted.

I went to a Montessori school open house this weekend and loved it, but it was during Molly's nap time so she hasn't given an opinion yet. There are no toys in the classroom, only a bazillion "works" (like bean pouring, sandpaper letters, etc.) that the kids select on their own and practice. The playground looked fine, but what do I know?

 Meanwhile, Molly has just gone through some burst in development that's hard to pin down, but includes her using funny adult phrases and longer sentences and concentrating intensely while making a new style of drawing on the white board. That's the only place she wants to be photographed lately.

This is a funny video that finally captures something she's been doing for a while -- composing imaginary thank you notes to people. The text is usually something like, "Dear Grandma, Thank you for the present. I love you. Love, Molly."

In this one, I just put a bag of rags within reach for her so she doesn't have to ask me every time she wants to wash off her chalk board. Apparently she was pretending that they were washcloths and that Lex and Eve gave them to her. So she painstakingly made this drawing and then told me what it was. Through some miracle, she actually repeated the whole thing on camera.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Monday, October 18, 2010


Scenes from the weekend ...

Molly making some phone calls with Grandpa.

Carving pumpkins

Molly and Oma do dishes afterward.

Molly's own photo of her buddy.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Back on the trail

We were almost afraid to bring up the subject with Molly, but Jim's dojo does an annual climb up Mt. Watatic in the fall and this year's trip was Saturday. We were sure the last thing she would want to do was get back into the hiking backpack, after the chilly climb the weekend before. However, all I had to do was play up the fact that there would be kids there and she didn't seem to mind. So ...

At the top of Mt. Watatic

Molly hanging with the gang of older girls.
Jim and I tried to stay back and look the other direction so she could follow the girls and pretend we weren't there. At one point he was hovering (trying to keep her from walking off a sheer rock face, mind you), and she looked at him and pointed as if to say, "go away."

But lest you think our baby is all grown up ...

Friday, October 8, 2010

Feeling better

Hooray for second trimester!!! I feel SO much better. The cloud of nausea and nasty smells has lifted. I'm (mostly) keeping up with housework again. I'm interested in my hobbies again and much less cranky. Though I am horrified to realize how much weight I'm gaining this time, I can't seem to stop eating everything in sight, so I'm really trying hard to exercise again. I've got a DVD with yoga and belly dance on it, and Molly has been watching it with me. This has introduced a whole collection of new moves into her repertoire, for better or worse.
This was taken the other night before bed (that's why it's so dark -- I hope you can see it). She's wearing a costume -- ballet slippers, ballet skirt, a shirt with a ballet dancer on it and a hat she told me is her special belly dancing hat (she doesn't distinguish between belly dance and ballet dance). She dragged her rug to the living room and told me it was her yoga mat.

Molly is convinced the baby's a girl. I've tried to tell her that it could be a boy, too, but she still always refers to the baby as "she."

For a while, Molly was asking me over and over how the baby eats when it's in my belly. She simply does not believe this crazy story about a tube from my body into the baby's tummy that becomes a belly button, and that everyone she can name started out in somebody else's belly with one of these tubes. So she keeps asking.
She has become very sisterly, too. She's been digging through boxes in the basement and finding her old toys, and saying "maybe the baby would like this." She found an old bathing suit of hers and when I told her it doesn't fit anymore, she said maybe the baby could wear it.
She's also interested in babysitting, apparently. The other day I had to go out to the garden to pick veggies for dinner and I asked Molly if she wanted to stay inside or come with me. She told me that when the baby's here, I can go to the garden by myself and she can stay inside and "keep" the baby. Hmmm. And the other day she asked if, when she's seven, she can stay with the baby and while I leave the house. I told her seven is a bit young but I appreciate the offer.
Molly also likes checking out my belly and saying, "oh, your belly is getting so big." She insists she can feel the baby moving (highly unlikely) and she likes whispering to the baby and listening to the baby with her stethoscope.
I'm glad she's so excited about the baby. It makes everything so much fun!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Mini vacation

We just got back from a weekend get-away to New Hampshire, which we booked just for fun and also to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary, which is Thursday.

I made a Shutterfly album with a bunch of photos, but here are the highlights.

We found a perfect little cottage on Newfound Lake at off-season rates. It was tiny, but had two bedrooms (meaning the grown-ups could stay up watching TV long after the kid goes to bed -- HOORAY) and gigantic windows looking out on the water.

It was pouring rain Friday the whole drive up, but by Saturday morning the clouds were gone. Here's the view from the cottage.

We got out the door early Saturday and met Alan, Tessa, Lex and Eve for a hike up Mt. Cardigan. The kids were fantastic!!! I can't believe those little legs made it all the way up the mountain!

Molly rode most of the way in the backpack and grew increasingly unhappy as we got close to the top. It was really cold and windy. Toward the end the bare rock got pretty steep and slick with water, and I'm sure I'm going to have nightmares about watching Jim try to keep his balance while Molly looked as if she was going to fly over his head. We were almost to the peak -- Alan was shouting back that he could see the fire tower -- when we decided to turn back. We did stay long enough to snap a few pictures, though.

Later in the afternoon we went for a drive around the lake and found this really cool old-style playground in the middle of nowhere. It had one of those spinning merry-go-round things, a climbing dome and even real teeter totters. You don't see those death traps around much anymore. ;)

We finished the day by letting Molly eat a gigantic ice cream sandwich and watch television. They had a Sesame Street DVD in the cottage and it seemed like something she'd like. It wasn't until we were sitting down with it on that we realized this is probably her first television show. I mean, she's seen her fair share of YouTube videos of kittens and the television is often on at the neighbor's house, but this is the first time that I know of that we actually put something on the television for her to watch. So I took a picture of the historic moment.

Snuggling in the cottage with milk.
This morning the lake was all misty and pretty. Jim got a good shot.
So that was our trip. We were gone less than 48 hours but it felt like an entire week. Woo hoo!!!