Wednesday, April 26

How Does She Know?

Sweetie Pie has started sleeping for about a three to four hour stretch in the evenings. We're putting her in the crib, she fusses, we rub her belly (or back--she's begun rolling over onto her stomach, which freaks me out still to no end even though I remember from when Doodles was this size that once they start rolling on their stomachs to sleep on their own, there's nothing you can do about it), and she'll fall asleep. We put her down at 6 and she'll wake up between about 10 and 11 (although one blissful night, she stayed asleep in her crib until 1:30!). At that point she's pretty much inconsolable unless either Adam walks her or I nurse her and then bring her into bed with one of us.

So, we got cocky. "She's starting to sleep!" we cheered. "She's starting to sleep," we exclaimed. We patted ourselves on the backs. Sleeping Sweetie! We had been wanting to go to New York for a weekend, so we figured, "Why not!" My parents will be there to babysit one night, and I have no qualms with them hanging with Sweetie while she sleeps and then sitting with her in bed once she needs to be transferred. It's not like in the old days where someone would be trapped next to her in bed for the entire evening. In Miami, Adam and I wanted to go out for a drink at the hotel next to my parents' condo. When Sweetie fell asleep, we had to beg the Tweedle Twirp to sit in bed next to her so we could run out for exactly one hour. Adam and I were crushed when the hotel bar was closed for a private party and we booked for the next closest bar, about a 10 minute walk away. We had the bar to ourselves, considering no one in Miami drinks that early unless they're still drinking from the night before. We made it back in 65 minutes ("Your five minutes late!" snapped the Tweedle Twirp--she forgets sometimes that she's complicit in this whole child thing; my children are supposed to take care of her when she's old). But now, everything's changed! We can use babysitters! We can go out on real dates! Our daughter sleeps for a tiny, pathetic stretch of time but we are so conditioned that it feels like a real achievement.

You know what comes next. I bought our nonrefundable hotel room on Priceline. We made plans with friends. We get excited. And Pie stops sleeping. Last night, she slept for one--count 'em one--hour before demanding a bedmate. Crib streak--over!

Sigh. They can sense these things, can't they? And they just want to punish us. I think Pie just doesn't like to leave the house. Doodles, meanwhile, can't wait to get out. I made the mistake of telling him that we were going, and since then it's been nothing but, "I want to ride a subway train now! I want to see Peter now! I want to go to New York now!"

Nonrefundable. Yep. Yep. Yep.

Wednesday, April 19

Chicken Mommy

Doodles is in a gymnastics class. He's been taking gymnastics for about seven months now, and he adores it.

During the next session, the entire gym will be putting on shows. His class will be doing a "Chicken Little" routine. It's all a big sham, I think, to get the parents to fork over money for costumes and then to pay an admission to watch the show. I feel like this is my inauguration into the world of just dumping all the contents out of my wallet for extracurricular activities.

Anyway, that wasn't my point. The point is, the girls will be wearing yellow leotards with yellow hair scrunchies that they'll put around their ankles, like chickens. The boys will be wearing black shorts and a white T-shirt. Now, if you were a 2 1/2 year old, which outfit would you rather wear? Exactly. Now compound that by putting one of your two best friends--who is a girl--in the class and she gets to wear the yellow leotard and hair scrunchy. Doodles declared today that he wants to wear the yellow leotard.

What to do? Do you know, as much as I worship the Free to Be You and Me album, I hardly ever play it for Doodles. And one of the main reasons is the song "William's Doll." For those who lived under a rock in the '70s--or with Republicans--the song is about a little boy who wants a doll and his friends make fun of him and his father doesn't want him to have one. His grandmother finally gives him a doll because "someday he is going to be a father, too." I loved this song growing up. I still love it. But I don't want Doodles listening to this song because it would never even occur to him at this point that boys don't traditionally play with dolls. We have some dolls at home that once or twice he's done something with, but I do know that he has enjoyed playing with dolls at school. I'm afraid if he hears the song, it'll put the notion into his head that boys don't play with dolls.

My point here is that I really try to be gender neutral in dealing with my children, a fact made difficult by my buying Doodles's clothing off of ebay (lots of very "boy" looking clothing) and that Sweetie Pie's clothing is mostly hand-me-downs (hence a preponderance of pink), but I offer Pie plenty of trucks and I didn't blink when Doodles wore Pie's pink socks to school.

Because the gymnastics show is still two months away, I simply steered him away from the clothing rack without saying anything. But what do I say? The leotard is girl clothing? Uh, I don't think so. Do I point out that the boys will be wearing something else? Well, I could do that, but what's going to have more effect on him: some boys he sees once a week or J., who he follows/fights with/plays with/hugs on an almost daily basis?

Okay, so maybe I fork over the $30 and let him wear the leotard. I mean, he is only 2 1/2. And if we were doing it in the 'burb we live in, I think I'd feel quite comfortable doing so. But the gym is a bit aways, and it's more of a working class environment, and I don't think I want to go around explaining why I think it's okay for my son to wear a yellow leotard and a scrunchy. But is that classism on my part? Or just laziness?

I'm hoping that by the time we have to order the outfits comes around, he'll want the shorts and T-shirt (yeah, right. Even I covet one of those little leotards!). Otherwise, I'm going to have some great pictures to embarass him with when he's 16 and trying to impress girls. "And here's one of Doodles when he decided to perform his Chicken Little routine in a yellow leotard!" Might be worth the cost of the leotard just for that priceless humiliation.

By Any Other Name...

I remember the conversation I wanted to blog about! And it was with Adam, not with Doodles.

In the a.m.
Me: Doodles, what do you want for breakfast? Hmmm, what do we have? [Rifling through cabinet, finding a box of Cocoa Puff bars] We have a chocolate bar left. Do you want it?
Adam: Would you mind not calling it a chocolate bar? I don't like where that leads. Cocoa Puff bar or cereal bar.
Me: That's fine. Good point. As long as we're fixing up our speech, could we please stop calling them "Peeps" and start calling them "breakfast"?
Adam: It doesn't work that way.

Wednesday, April 12


I had a lot to say this week, but I'm so roly poly after our Passover seder that it's all fled me.

I said to Adam: We had some conversation this week that I wanted to blog.
Adam: What was it?
Me: I don't remember. I just remember wanting to blog it but I was too busy to do it.
Adam: I'm not sure what it was.
Me: Hmmm. Maybe it wasn't a conversation with you. Maybe it was a conversation with Doodles. Well, it was either you or Doodles.
Adam: That's not saying much for our conversations.

True. But I still can't remember. We got back from our South Beach vacation on Sunday and coming home was a real downer. We had so much fun with Rachel, Max, and Lily and Milo's bar mitzvah was fabulous. We got to meet tiny little Helena (although I need to point out once again that tiny little Helena's mom WOKE UP my sleeping child; I give her benefit of the doubt, as her daughter was a mere two weeks old at the time, but you can sure as hell bet when I return to Miami, I'll be sure to wake up her sleeping child and she can see how nice that is for everyone). Doodles went bowling for the first time. Sweetie Pie just smiled and looked gorgeous for everyone. The weather was perfect. The Tweedle Twins were in fine form. And we came home to dreary weather, looming work deadlines, and mere days to prepare our house for Passover and our seder for eight adults, five toddlers, and one Sweetie Pie.

Passover seder was a success, if you can call four out of five toddlers turning mutinous fifteen minutes into the haggadah a success. But, hey, I think that's thirteen minutes longer than they made it last year. Doodles recited one of the four questions (with prompting) and Sweetie Pie discovered that she loves matzoh balls (food #47 that she eats and Doodles won't touch). In the middle of the crowded room, at one point, Doodles did demand that his father play baseball with him (uh, didn't happen). Too much food. Sweetie Pie did remarkably well, especially considering that she has her very first ear infection. But the girl loves a crowd and she worked the room.

And now poor Adam is trapped in bed with Sweetie Pie--who still won't sleep on her own--so I can blog for you people. Time for me to go relieve him and relax a little, knowing I don't have to have a sit-down dinner like this for a whole 'nother year.

Wake Up, Mommy!

This post was originally written at 2:47 a.m. last Thursday.

I'm pretty sure this is what Sweetie Pie is thinking right now: Hi Mom. I'm awake. Did you notice? I'm not just awake, but I'm Awake. Oh, hell, who are we kidding? I'm AWAKE! AWAKE, AWAKE, AWAKE! La, la, la, la, AWAKE! Entertain me, please. I mean now. STOP CLOSING YOUR EYES! Yes, I may have wormed my way into your bed, but now you must keep those eyes open and MAKE ME HAPPY! No, I don't know what will make me happy. That's your department. Take me for a walk. I don't care that this is Miami Beach in the wee hours and you're in pajamas. Yeah, that's it. Put me in the mei tai. What, the balcony? I want to go out. I want to par-tay! Mom, didn't you hear this is South Beach, where the party never ends? And I don't just mean the party in my pants that I'm currently working on. Oh, I like this. You walking back and forth and back and forth and back and forth and back and forth... Ha ha ha! This is funny! I'm just going to look at you with my big wide eyes and laugh and laugh! Because this is so much fun! Oh, I could do this for hours. Ha ha ha! And I think I will...

The Feminist Vote

Desipte all the Swiffer Swuff (okay, I did just make up that word), hardcore feminist, cool-chick Veronica is a finalist in Swiffer's Amazing Woman of the Year contest. If she wins, $5,000 is donated Women in Media and News. So go vote for Veronica here.

Wednesday, April 5

Another Moooooo Post

On Saturday, we are attending my cousin's bar mitzvah, and as it takes place in Miami, I didn't have anything to wear, for while it may be snowing right now at home, here in lovely South Florida it's been in the upper 70s and lower 80s, which means none of my turtleneck/wool skirt combos would go very well.

So while Doodles napped under the care of his grandparents, Adam, Sweetie Pie, and I had a leisurely lunch and then headed to Ann Taylor Loft so I could pick out an outfit for the bar mitzvah.

(A necessary aside: at this bar mitzvah, the hosts will be serving coconut shrimp and bacon and cheese potato skins at the reception. Nice and kosher. For the record, the bar mitzvah's non-Jewish mom was horrified that this was happening, but the Jewish father--my cousin--didn't see any problems with this. Now, normally I'd say something witty and biting about him, but the thing is, he took us out for a ride today on his very nice 45' boat [an aside to the aside: I often confuse the " of inches for the ' of feet and had it not been for a quick Google, I would have had us riding on Ollie's 45 inch toy boat] and as I am hoping for future rides, I'll simply keep my mouth shut, or my fingers still, as the case may be.)

On the walk to the store, however, it occurred to me that I was not suitably dressed for trying on clothes. Today, I walked out in a pair of shorts and a nursing tank, which has the bra built in. So I had no bra on to try on clothes with.

Not a big deal. Except that 1) clothes look better with the bra on (and the sales associate did point out that a shirt I didn't like "would look better when I wore a bra." I desperately wanted to tell her, "I do! I do wear bras!" but that seemed kind of pathetic), and more importantly, 2) I'm a nursing mom. Lactation happens.

So, of course, I'm trying on all sorts of lovely dry-clean-only shirts, and Sweetie Pie starts to wail. Those of you without kids won't understand what this means, but all you nursing moms (and those living with nursing moms) know what a crying baby can do to a nursing mom.

"Oh no!" I think to myself. "Don't start, don't start." I try to block out the sounds of Sweetie's cries. I change clothing as fast as I can. What is it the guys do? Oh yes. I start to think about baseball. And nuns. And nuns playing baseball. But as a Jewish mom who really doesn't like baseball, this is not helping. I will myself to not let down. Luckily, I got my own clothes--nursing tank with pads, thank you very much--on in time. No awkward explaining of the odd wet stains on the clothes I was trying on.

And, I'll have you know, I did get my outfit. So now I can lactate all I like. Moo.