Saturday, January 31, 2015


Why does there need to be a quarterly Latin project??????  Why?????

This is shaping up to be a very projecty spring term.  Some highlights:

  • major book report with poster
  • science fair (school and possibly regional)
  • Latin project
  • history fair
  • a costume or two for school plays to put together
And that's over roughly the next month.  Oh, and there's also spelling bee coming up.

My husband is the project guy (I mostly hang out with the baby and wring my hands from afar), but this is getting out of hand.  Good thing we are extracurricular minimalists. 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Potty Training II

Some updates:

  • No more store brand pullups--it's just not worth it.  The one I took off Baby T this morning was literally leaking through the material (not just at the leg opening).
  • Baby T has the expensive habit when using the potty of taking dry clean pullups, wadding them up, and stuffing them into the diaper pail.  I've had some words with her, but she is unconvinced.
  • We've been watching the Bear in the Big Blue House potty episode. 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Great Escape II

Baby T is now easily vaulting out of her bed.  Here's a story that happened today:

I put Baby T down for her nap in her crib (the one with the legs sawed off).  At the time I left the room, there was a childproofing cover on the doorknob on her side.  Some time later, I heard the unmistakable sound of Baby T galloping around inside her room and I saw the doorknob being rattled from inside.  I went about my business.  About an hour later, when it was time to go get the big kids from school, I went to get her.  Interestingly, she was fast asleep inside her crib.  Furthermore, the babyproofing had been ripped off the door knob.

So, to recap--Baby T was able to disarm the babyproofing on the doorknob and she is able to come and go from her bed at will and she puts herself back to bed.

My husband glued the door knob cover on before bedtime tonight.  We also are discussing what to do about her bed.  We can either leave things be (my preference) or saw several bars off of the crib, creating an opening for her to come and go through (my husband's preference).  I hate to mess with success, so I'd like to leave things be.  My husband is concerned about the safety of her leaping in and out.  I think her technique is good and have encouraged my husband to watch her methods.

At some point, she will probably get a plain mattress on the floor.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Great Escape

This morning I went into Baby T's room and discovered that she was running around the room, presumably having finally learned how to escape from her crib.  (My husband had sawed the legs off the crib months ago when she was first starting to try to get out, so it's not that far off the ground.)  She seemed to have been spending her time out of the crib this morning arranging her favorite stuffed animals near the door and rooting around in the diaper and pull-up stash.  I am pretty sure that she was thinking hard about getting on a fresh diaper (I think she had one in her hands when I came in), but with her pj zipper pull removed, she wasn't able to take off her clothes or get at her wet diaper.

I removed a number of items from her room, some less baby safe, some just annoying to deal with if she got into them.

In some order, we eventually need to do the following:

  • make it possible for Baby T to get in and out of bed.
  • new bed or maybe just twin mattress on floor?
  • switch over to 2-piece pjs so that she can easily use the potty when left alone in her room
The last item may take a while to get to, though, as Baby T is potty-interested rather than potty-trained.  

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Potty training

Here's some of what's happening:

  • Baby T is still keen on potty training and has been asking to go and enjoying many rereadings of her four (!) potty books.  She's even been willing to try public restroom toilets.
  • Baby T has, however, only had one successful pee in the potty since Monday.
  • ??????
  • We've switched to pullups as our undergarment of choice, rather than diapers. 

Friday, January 16, 2015

Potty training?????

On Monday, Baby T said something that I've forgotten now that showed so much physical awareness that I decided to do a push for potty training.  Here's what's happened since then:
  • I pulled out two old potties.
  • I pulled out several potty books written for kids and ordered one more.  (As it turned out unnecessarily--there is a lot of overlap in thematics.  Two are enough.)
  • I bought an absorbent waterproof-bottomed machine washable bathmat from Bed Bath and Beyond and installed it underneath one of the potties in Baby T's carpeted bedroom.  (I've never had a child have a potty in their own bedroom, but the bathrooms are so far away from her room that it's going to have to be that way.
  • I bought some more flannel receiving blankets to use as covers for the machine washable bathmat.
  • I installed the other potty in our master bath.
  • I bought several packs of pullups with enticing designs.
  • I bought a Sesame street potty seat that goes on top of the grownup potty and installed it in the powder room downstairs.  (So, that's three officially-approved pottying stations for our Baby T.  I also own a couple of folding seats for use when out and about, but I haven't pulled those out yet.)
  • I purchased two step stools.  One is now in the powder room and the other is now in the master bath.  Baby T has already been enjoying her new freedom and independence with regard to being able to wash her hands.
  • Baby T has done easily a dozen potty visits so far, most of them on her initiative.  We spend our time either reading and rereading the potty books or just me singing "Wheels on the Bus," with Baby T suggesting verses.  (She'll say "cows" and I'll sing about how "The cows on the bus go moo, moo, mo, all through the town!")  I think that several verses of Wheels on the Bus make a good potty timer.  Rereadings of the potty books suggest that Baby T has a stronger and stronger grasp of at least the theoretical side of the subject. 
  • What about concrete results? you ask.  One successful pee.  That's all!  But we are prepared for success, if success is on the way.  I'm also thinking that once warm weather arrives, I can just have Baby T wear a t-shirt and pullup around the house.   

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Baby T's progress

Here's some of what Baby T has been doing (Baby T is now 2 years 3 months old):

  • She's just started having "conversations" with us that go on for several exchanges, rather than just an isolated exchange.  Her contribution is two or three words at a time.
  • Baby T loves asking for cat, dog or bird pictures or videos when I'm on my laptop.
  • Baby T is getting more and more skilled at going up and down the stairs.
  • She's a very good grocery store shopping buddy.  On the rare occasions when she's on foot, she will sometimes run over to produce and start grabbing it to load up into our cart.  She also is very helpful for choosing baby food.  (She used to eat 100% big people food, but then went on a fruit and veggie strike that led me to reintroduce baby food to preserve variety.)
  • Baby T is very particular about her clothing choices.  (I did overrule her for Christmas outfits and I do sometimes overrule her for Sunday, though.  She has some cute dresses I'd like her to get around to wearing.)
  • Baby T is going to parents' day out once a week, and has since just before she turned two.  We started with church nursery for Mass around 18 or 19 months.  This is the earliest any of ours have gone to group childcare, so it's a new experience.  (The big kids had way more babysitters at this age than Baby T, though.)
  • We are enjoying the space age amenities of our 2011 Kia (!) minivan:  a separate mirror for checking on baby and a DVD player (on longer excursions, ours is usually playing Star Wars or Our Neighbor Totoro).  The backup camera is also great for safety.
  • Baby T is a real planner.  When she knows she's going some place (like upstairs or to the car), she often scoops up a big armful of stuffed animals to take with her.
  • For some reason, she's particularly fond of the sippies with straws.  "Straw cup!" is a frequent request.
  • Baby T is suddenly very interested in her kitchen, toy pots and pants, tea set, and play food.
  • Baby T adores the Christmas tree and often demands that it be lit up.  
  • After her nap, I explained that we were going to the cafeteria for dinner.  "Pizza!" she replied joyously.
  • Baby T loves playing with C's Playmobil horse sets.  

Saturday, January 10, 2015


My husband often makes crepes (that we eat with a sweet spiced cheese filling and pie filling) and it's been one of my long-term goals for C (age 12 now) to learn how.

Well, we had crepes for dinner tonight (culinary lavender in the spiced ricotta cheese filling, by the way) and C was learning to turn crepes.  My husband was pouring batter and C was turning the crepes, which worked well.

We are working toward inviting a classmate's family for crepes some weekend.  

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Cookie houses

Here's some of what's happening:

  • We did a second round of cookie houses with some friends.  We wound up with a charming cookie house village.  After extensive cleanup (cookie construction is very messy), we took the inevitable photos.  I had the inspiration of bringing out some coconut flakes to make snow with.  Baby T ate cookies and watched.  
  • The big girls had an animated discussion critiquing the latest Hobbit movie.
  • The cafeteria is open again (for a little bit), deo gratias.  I told Baby T this afternoon that we'd be going to the cafeteria for dinner tonight.  "Pizza!" she said, in a gratified voice.
  • One of Baby T's new phrases (which she uses very frequently) is "put away."  It's always in the imperative.
  • The big kids are back in school!
  • During break, C had guitar once a week, two ukulele lessons, and daily (except Sunday) brief practice.  10 minutes is fine.  Also, I generally let c choose between practicing guitar and practicing ukulele.
  • Oh, and at C's second ukulele lesson, her teacher (who is also her guitar teacher), had her working on Scarborough Fair.  It's currently a reach, but I had the chance to discover that Scarborough Fair actually sounds surprisingly good on two ukuleles.    
  • I spent this morning with Baby T at school paying the tuition downpayment for the fall, doing a donation to the school capital fund, dropping off a couple of uniform pieces for sale and shopping in the used uniform closet (two pairs of pants for D for $12 total--yay!).
  • My husband had a birthday.  He baked a chocolate cake (the Hershey one) with chocolate frosting (with a little rum flavoring), plus coconut flakes on top.  Very good!!!!
  • I'm hearing that some fencing equipment purchases may be imminent.
  • D's birthday approaches.  It's in two months, but in mommy time, that's the merest blink of an eye.
  • Oh, and good news with regard to D's basketball.  The kids' school has mandatory team sports from 4-6 grade and D is a 4th grader, but we've just learned that the 4th graders are just going to play each other in scrimmages at school four times this term.  Yay!  This is really nice, because in previous years when C was in volleyball, we'd have to run her all over town almost once a week.  This is getting off easy.