Friday, February 26, 2010

Some days, she's still a baby.

Weird parenting moment from today.

Charlotte found a dead ladybug - just a shell, really - on the windowsill. She pushed it around with her finger for a while.  "Hey, ladybug.  Hey.  Ladybug.  Hey, ladybug.  I'm gonna fix you up."

My heart contracted - she's just a baby still.  I said to her, "Babe, I don't think that ladybug is alive anymore," and she just gave me a blank look.  She went back to pushing it around and talking to it.  I didn't want her to squish it, I think that would confuse her even more, papery shell just dusting under her finger.

I distracted her by taking her with me to get the mail, and when we came back in, I popped the ladybug exoskeleton in the trash before she noticed.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Charlotte's biggest mania right now is for stacking. It was something she started doing just around Christmas. Prior to Christmas she did a little playing with legos and some interlocking plastic pegs - she'd bring them to us and ask us to "make a stick." Around Christmas she started playing with the blocks at her grandparents house and started stacking them and saying, again, that she was "makin' a stick." We got her some blocks for Christmas, and the rest, as they say, is history.

The easiest thing to stack is her blocks.  We have crappy all-purpose-y style cheapo apartment carpet, installed over a carelessly uneven and thin pad, so we have what just might be the least stable base for stacking a vertical tower.  Charlotte has an amazing patience for it, and will stack and restack without end.  She also stacks things on horizontal surfaces - the coffee table, her toy kitchen, upside-down boxes, the corner of the kitchen table she can reach, and her closed potty.

Sometimes there is the double-whammy of OCD toddler behavior - the stacked tower and the line up of toys on the floor.  Honestly, if I didn't have as much experience with toddlers as I do, and haven't researched so much about things as I have, the stacking and lining up would make me a wee bit nervous, autism spectrum wise, but I'm pretty confident on that front.

Charlotte's favorite stacking toys, the absolute ultimate in compulsion, are the blocks from a Haba set (similar to this set, but without the car - man, she would like that car) that her Aunt H got her for her first birthday.  She's liked the set from day one, but the solid feel, stability, and the intrinsic set-ness of these blocks make them Charlotte's favorite stackers.  Literally the first thing she plays with in the morning is this set, and the last thing at night.  In fact, starting tonight, we took them out of her room at bedtime, since the last three nights she's gotten out of bed to stack them immediately behind the closed door.

The newest trick, though, is stacking food.  The geometry of the watermelon was just too much to resist on Friday.

Monday, February 8, 2010

QTOD - Quote of the Day

Charlotte, as Mater: "I want to ask you a question, but I don't know how."

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Time for a little snore...

I've been quiet lately, but because nothing's happening. Mostly because I've been having trouble focusing on work, which means more and more of my time gets spent on work. Which means my time is split between work/Charlotte/essential chores/sleep. Leaving very little time for blogging/knitting/reading. I've been desperately renewing these library books, trying to at least finish the books I got on interlibrary loan. I mean, if I went to all that trouble to get them, I should really finish them, right? And I have two knitted Christmas presents that I'm not done with. Though that's not as bad as it seems - we just finished celebrating Christmas this past weekend.

Operation Big Girl Bed is continuing to go very well at bed times (knock on wood), but naps are a thing of the past. The misty, water-colored, well-rested past. Another result of the Big Girl Bed is that Charlotte is waking up much earlier (for her), around 7 am instead of 8 am. (I know, my 2 year old sleeps until 7 am, I'm lucky.) But as a result, I worry that she's getting just under 12 hours of sleep a day, which seems kind of low. Especially around 4 pm when she's just a mess of whining and demands. Especially around 6:30 pm when she's falling asleep into her dinner. Especially around 11 am when she's talking about "taking a little snore" and hopping around her room. It's just a cascade of Bad News most days. I desperately need the break and she desperately needs a nap. She has "Quiet Time" in her room, but that's not really relaxing for either of us. For Charlotte, Quiet Time just means a chance to play with the door closed and the lights off. For me, Quiet Time means a chance to find out what isn't toddler-proofed in her room as well as I thought it was. (How do you child proof a diaper pail? Or a wipes container?)

The one good thing about the crib was that (99.88% of the time) it kept Charlotte in one spot, and eventually she'd run out of things to do and she'd fall asleep. Or quietly chew her crib to splinters. Or stick stuff up her nose. But still, she'd be quiet. And I could get some work done, recharge, clean the kitchen, prep dinner, eat something without sharing, etc. It was a mid-day oasis. And now Nap/Quiet time has become yet another teachable moment/learning process in the middle of the day, when really, Charlotte and I both still need that break.

I know that this is all an adjustment, and that in 3 months this will have sorted itself out in some way...but coming from a place of overworked exhaustion, it's just hard to look forward. I need a break NOW.