Saturday, April 28, 2007

Twenty-Three Months Old

Oh, my dear little Pearl!

Toddlers are not a new phenomenon to me. I remember the toddlerhoods of my youngest brother and sister pretty well, and a few years ago when I worked at a preschool I had in my care a group of five little girls ranging from eighteen months old to two and a half years. After that darling, wild little bunch I thought caring for one little person at a time would be a piece of cake.

I guess it could go without saying that I was wrong. Daycare was tough but taking care of your own almost-two-year-old around the clock is a whole 'nother can of worms. This month Pearl has led me spinning in a crazy dance between exasperation (all the fussing and the whining) and hilarity (popping up right after nursing first thing in the morning and saying, "Whew! Spicy!"); frustration (meeting me with protests at every turn, fighting sleep and veering way off schedule) and joy (hearing my "I love you"s echoed with "I yuh you"s of her own); terror (disappearing at my in-laws' house during a family gathering, calling proudly, "I'm up the stairs!" as I found her) and sweetness (raising her voice to join mine for the first time as I sang "Bye Lo Baby" to her at bedtime). It has been hard for me to catch my breath and retain the inner reserve of calm that is important to have when parenting a toddler.

Her imagination has blossomed this month, and she likes to play that she is eating and drinking and share her feast with me. At her grandmother's house, she held a strand of Mardi Gras beads up to her eyes and said, "It's my glasses!"

Love that Expression

Pearl has also been a bit fearful this month. With Spring's arrival the world has come to life and all sorts of new things are presenting themselves. She was thrilled to find yellow dandelions in the yard but once they went to seed she would shriek, "Fuzzy dandelions!" and cry a bit. She was willing to hold my hand and check one out but once her finger touched its fluff she started wailing. She is ok with their presence now and even likes me to blow their seeds into the air, but won't touch them herself. Bugs on a screen door at night also frightened her, and she kept an eye on them and her distance, repeating my assurances in a very worried tone: "It's okay, it's just a bug. It's kinda scary!!! It's outside..."

So life with Pearl this month has been good, but oh so exhausting. I think I can get through this phase if I can just remember that sometimes, she sleeps:


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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Guess It's Time to Watch Our Mouths!

The other day, Mr. Peach was playing golf on the Wii and Pearl was watching him. "Damn it!" he growled, and was echoed moments later by Pearl's own utterance: "Dammit!"

He didn't even hear her so I pointed it out and fussed at him for cussing around her. This morning as I was rummaging around in my purse for my ever-elusive keys, I muttered, "Shit!" and was then startled to hear Pearl repeat it quite precisely.

We've been meaning to watch our language for months now but I guess it's time to really pay attention... I know a Grandma whose heart is going to break if she hears Pearl drop the f-bomb!

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Potty Progress!

I am happy to report that over the past few weeks we've had a sort of potty breakthrough! Pearl began saying "Soggy diaper!" before she peed rather than afterwards, and soon progressed to saying "Need sit on the potty." as well. She'll usually tell me when she needs to poop too. She has been sitting on the potty and going pee completely unprompted more and more - which is especially cool when she isn't wearing a diaper! I am considering getting some sort of training pants/diapers... maybe a velcro version that she can remove herself without having them around her ankles, which she hates. I don't know if that would be pushing it or jinxing it or anything - I'm so thrilled with the situation as it is I don't know that I want to change anything up!

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Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Easter!

Pearl, enjoying her chocolate Easter bunny (a rare sugary treat!):

Mmmm Chocolate Bunny

More photos to come.

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Friday, April 06, 2007

I Could Cry: A Garden Journal Entry

Last weekend I got one of my raised beds set up, mixed rich organic mushroom compost and vermiculite in with the soil my husband tilled, and planted seeds: carrots, two kinds of lettuce, kale, marjoram, dill, cilantro, chives, and turnips. On Thursday morning I saw the tiniest little turnip sprouts, and little buds forming on the chives (which were transplanted from the plastic pots they'd been in on the patio since purchasing them last year!).

Thursday night, the cold weather hit. We even got a little snow. I covered that raised bed and the strawberry patch with sheets but it wasn't enough. It'll take time to tell if the seeds & seedlings were affected but I already saw brown wilt on some of the strawberry blossoms. My strawberry patch was doing so very well, it just breaks my heart. The plants were huge and covered with buds and blossoms and green fruit. I am very much a beginner gardener so I don't know what this will mean for the rest of the season (I'm avoiding research for the moment because I want to believe we'll still get lots of berries throughout the summer) but I know it pretty much spells doom for the blossoms & fruit already formed.

Update: I woke up this morning (at five-thirty, and not by choice, I feel grumpily compelled to mention) to a world darkly glittering with frost, a thermometer that read nineteen degrees, and the realization that I'd forgotten cover the garden with sheets. Am feeling too stupid to be a gardener. Trying to tell myself that it'll only set the newly sowed portion back by a week... Not thinking about the strawberries. Maybe they're okay. Also, I'm going to have to plant more morning glory seeds along the fence... I checked on those sprouts yesterday and they are all quite shriveled and wilted.

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