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Friday, February 25, 2011

My Way

Conversation at lunch today:

Me: Sophie, porridge?
Sophie: Yesh.
[eats porridge happily for about 3 minutes]
Me: Water?
Sophie: No. No way!
Me: When did you learn how to say No Way?
Sophie: No way!
Me: No way?
Sophie: Way!
Me: Would you like some water?
Sophie: No way!
Me: Way.
Sophie: No way!
Me: OK, water, no way.
Sophie: Way!

And then at snack time:

Me: Sophie, guess what you're having for snack today? Raisins! [shows her the box of raisins]
Sophie: Raisins! No way!
Me: Seriously? No way?
Sophie: No way!
Me: Way.
Sophie: Way. Raisins...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What dreams may come

I think Sophie might have had first nightmare last night. Or maybe her first conscious dream, if there's such a thing. For about a month now, she's finally sleeping through the night (it's been a long time coming and you have no idea how much we appreciate it...) and even if she wakes up whining a little, she'll always go back down in a few seconds. But at about 11.00 last night, she woke up with a screech, calling out plaintively. I knew it wasn't her regular middle of the night whine after which she would go back to sleep- it actually sounded panicked.

When I went into her room, the poor baby was sitting in the corner of her crib, her face streaked with tears within the few seconds it took me to get upstairs. As I picked her up, she nuzzled her face into my shoulder, clinging on for dear life, saying over and over, "scared, scared..." I didn't even know she knew the word! After cradling her and singing to her for a bit, I gave her her teddy bear and she promptly calmed down and let me put her back in the crib. All was well again and she slept soundly till the morning.

Our poor baby... I can only imagine how petrified she must have been if she really did have a bad dream or just a dream. That itself must be strange and frightening for an 18 month old, even if it wasn't a bad one. How does someone Sophie's age process the experience of dreaming? And while she does understand what we're saying, it's not like we can talk to her about it after, at least not in a way that's going to help her comprehend what her mind was doing. I'm guessing that as she gets older and as cognition and imagination become more complex, dreams in general are going to become more common. But until she gets old enough though, Mama, Dada, and Dodo (her teddy bear) will just have to be there to let her know that everything is going to be OK after.

[Sophie at 11 months]

Friday, February 18, 2011

Resistance is futile

We had no choice. Before this week, we were nazis about Sophie's media time- TV only during that 20 minutes when we're nebulizing her in the evening, video on the iPhone only for those desperate moments in the car when Sophie decides to wage war against her car seat, and we've even stopped letting her play with the iPad because it was getting too hard to get her to stop once she started.

But we had to give in. Sophie fell sick on Monday and stayed home from school for two days. Usually, it wouldn't be a huge deal- we always have stuff to do at home- all her toys, craft, reading, dancing, or we'd go outside, even if it's cold, just to get some fresh air and let Sophie run around all bundled up. And then there's always our fail-safe back-ups- the public library or the Hands-On Museum. But between the fever and the relentless coughing, Sophie was just zapped and too listless to do anything at all. And going outside into the cold would have made it worse. She had no appetite (still doesn't), was really clingy, and just wanted to stay close to me all day. And so I had no choice- I busted out the DVR-ed episodes of Ni-Hao Kai Lan and Curious George, and a whole slew of YouTube videos we know Sophie really enjoys. It was one of those moments when I thought to myself, OK on a scale of 1- 10, 10 being a parent who drives with her child in her lap without a seat-belt à la Britney Spears, how bad a parent does this make me? I'm allowing Feist and OK Go to babysit my child for 20 minutes while I make myself a sandwich (you do the math on how many times I had to put those videos on repeat); I give in to Elmo and his ducks' persuasive powers of entertainment so I can squeeze in some email time; and I let Abby Cadabby sing about how much she loves words so Sophie will give me a 5 minute break to go to the bathroom. Maybe a 2? OK, 3. Tops.

It was a humbling moment of contrition as I reflected on the sanctimony of my former opinion about media exposure. Clearly, they were formed by a woman who had yet to experience the profound depths of the sad Whine or its first cousin, the humorless Cling, otherwise known as a toddler with a cold. You try being a working mom attempting to be somewhat productive while staying home to take care of her sick toddler; and then you let me know if you still think TV and videos are really the Big Bad Wolves Waiting to Turn Your Babies Brains to Mush...

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Valentines

If you were a wink, I'd be a nod
If you were a seed, well I'd be a pod.
If you were the floor, I'd wanna be the rug
And if you were a kiss, I know I'd be a hug.

- Barry Louis Polisar, "All I Want Is You"

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Row row row the boat

gently down the... scream? ;)

[taken using the self-portrait function of the iPhone]

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Random Daycare Daily Report #9

Sophie had a great Friday. Today we were dancing to some African jazz music and Sophie was really getting into it! She was squatting until she almost touched the ground, then bouncing up and down. It was really cute :) Sophie also enjoyed exploring snow in the sensory table. For her, it was a big snow buffet :) Sophie LOVES to eat snow!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Hi Mr. Squirrel

For as long as I can remember, there've always been squirrels outside our house. They're fearless- coming up close to you or remaining still even when you approach them. And in the last month of so, Sophie has developed a real interest in watching them. Every time we draw open the blinds to our glass door, she'll prop her pudgy hands against it and ask for "squirrel". We've even taken to buying sunflower seeds (which we tell her are nuts) and occasionally leaving handfuls of them outside so that the squirrel will return. Sort of like a pet. Just not in the house.

Well, this morning, to let some light into the house, I drew open the blinds and Sophie promptly runs to the door and asks for the squirrel. He's no where in sight which only makes Sophie press herself even closer to the door (we'll have to explain to her that this really isn't an enticement for the squirrel to appear). And then she turns up to me and says "nuss! nuss!" I had no clue what she was saying and kept trying to explain to her that Mr. Squirrel wasn't around. She looks completely exasperated and just keeps going "nuss! nuss!" Only then do I realize that she's asking for nuts! Not too bright, Mama... So I bring out our container of sunflower seeds, throw a couple of handfuls our the door, and lo and behold, in under 10 seconds, the squirrel appears. And you should have seen the look on Sophie's face- it was a mix of pride (this was my idea!), incredulity (you mean this really works???) and pure and utter joy (hi Mr. Squirrel!!).

I think her mind was officially blown... :)

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Guess who's 547.86 days old today?

[Updated with full-length version of video]

Name: Sophie Yew

Age: 18 months

Weight: 24 lbs 3oz (11kg)

Height: 31.25" (80cm)

Head circumference: 18.5cm (47cm)

Favorite foods (in no particular order and not all at the same time, although some times it happens...): pasta, sweet potato, oatmeal, rice puffs, oranges, crackers, peas, fish porridge, chicken nuggets, broccoli

Favorite words: "I need it!"

Favorite activities: Peeling/unpeeling and eating stickers; reading multiple books at the same time; playing in the snow, dragging her inflatable donkey all around the house ("hold hands!"); giving her parents hugs; running away from her parents' hugs.

Favorite toys: Dodo (teddy bear), Aquadoodle, Totoro plush, iPad.

Favorite books: I Love You Through and Through, Ten Little Rubber Ducks, Giraffes Can't Dance, Knuffle Bunny, Richard Scarry Best Word Book Ever, One Drowsy Dragon

Favorite songs: Itsy-Bitsy Spider, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Sing- Sing a Song, The Wheels on the Bus, How Much is that Doggy in the Window, Firetruck Song, Oh Mr Sun

So there- the most wonderful, time-consuming, mischievous, affectionate, beautiful, fearless, rambunctious, patience-testing, audacious, precious, and treasured thing in our lives right now.

And we love her more than life itself...

[full-length version]

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

She is no Goldilocks

This is what happens when I leave the two of them at home alone... :)

Random Daycare Daily Report #8

Sophie had a terrific morning. She was so excited to go outside and play in the snow. She went right to the shovel and started "shoveling" the sidewalk. Her method of shoveling consisted of holding the shovel in one hand and dragging it behind her while she walks up and down the sidewalk :)

Well, at least now we know who to put to work when the next blizzard hits... :)

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Random Daycare Daily Report #7

[Sophie's wearing a bright red floral dress to celebrate Chinese New Year. She wasn't at daycare on Thursday- the first day of the new year-- so we sent her to school on Friday all decked out for the occasion!]
Sophie had another great day at school! She enjoyed playing with the parachute in the gym this morning. She kept hiding under it :) We made a ball pit in our room later and Sophie had fun jumping in the balls. She was more interested, however, in throwing all the balls out of the pit! Our silly Sophie :)

Friday, February 04, 2011

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Really? That's all you've got?...

1. Riding the playground toys in the middle of all that snow, 2. Scooping snow onto herself, 3. Trying to trace her hand, 4. Books and blankie

In the end, it was more "meh..." than "oh man!". I think people were expecting to get totally plastered (like Chicago. Now that's what I call a blizzard...) and in the end, even though we did get a lot of snow and the temperature was truly, truly cold, Snowmageddon 2011 didn't quite live up to its hype. In the words of our friend, Lana, "The weather around here is starting to be like a bad boyfriend- huge promises of epic adventures jerked out from under you at the last minute." ;)

Not that we didn't enjoy the snow day though. Like we planned , there was plenty of snuggling under the blanket, reading, imaginary feeding of stuffed toys, sticker-peeling and attempted consuming of said stickers, and the watching of more TV than we usually allow Sophie. The winds even settled down enough in the afternoon for a short jaunt in the snow. Sophie's still not particularly enthused with the whole sledding business so we just stomped around the snow a lot (ok, tried to stomp around the snow- in some parts, the snow came up to her thigh, which did not make for easy stomping...). She also saw her first real snowman and wanted to give it a hug. That didn't quite happen although she did give it a high five on its twiggy hands.

And how happy was our little lovebug with having her parents all to herself pretty much all day?

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Snow, schmow

[All that blue? That's blizzard area.]

Snowmageddon. Snowpocalypse. Snowtastrophe.

All the words used to describe weather I'm looking at outside our window right now. We're experiencing a blizzard (yes, a blizzard- 7 years here and we've never had a blizzard warning before) and that's basically all that anyone here has been able to talk about for the past 3 days. Someone at the office even said we get weather like this only once every 15 years. This is the real deal, folks- not just a lot of snow, but very high winds (I can hear it rustling the trees), low temperatures, and blowing snow that reduces visibility. In other words, don't mess around with a blizzard.

Gretchen's House informed us earlier today that they will be closed tomorrow which is just fine by us- I probably would have kept Sophie home anyway. I don't want to have to worry about not being able to get to her in severe weather conditions. I made a quick Whole Foods run (and got the last shopping cart there- everyone had the same idea) and stocked up on essentials like milk (soy formula for Sophie), bread, fruit, veggies, pasta, and broth. And chocolate :) We also have flashlights and candles all ready. Thankfully, our furnace runs on gas so we don't have to worry about losing heat if there's a power outage.

We'll all be staying home tomorrow, likely hanging out in our PJs all day surrounded by blankets. Perfect for snuggling :) We have back episodes of Ni-Hao Kai Lan, Clifford, Sesame Street, and Curious George on the DVR, all of Sophie's toys have been alerted to what will be a day of committed indoor playing, and the sled, her snow suit, and boots are on standby if the wind and cold lets up tomorrow afternoon and we can go outside to tumble in 18-inches of freshly fallen snow :)

Alright blizzard, bring it on!