Thursday, February 26, 2009

Interview with a 3-year-old

I saw this on a friend's Facebook page and thought it was funny enough to recreate on the blog.

My Interview with Sidamo

1. What is something mommy always says to you?

“At Atticus’ house.”
(he left one of his trains at Atticus' house weeks ago, and he asks me daily where it is.)

2. What makes mommy happy?

3. What makes mommy sad?
Not listening.

4. How does your mom make you laugh?
Say, “Don’t smile!”

5. What was your mom like as a child?

6. How old is mommy?
I don’t know. You guess.

7. How tall is mommy?
Big. I’m big too.

8. What is her favorite thing to do?
Eat it.

9. What does your mom do when you're not around?
Eat it all.

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for?
For me come back.

11. What is your mom really good at?
Love me.
Melt me!

12. What is your mom not very good at?
I don’t know.

13. What does your mom do for her job?
I don’t know what your job is.

14. What is mommy's favorite food?

15. What makes mommy proud of you?
Sensing a theme?

16. What do you and your mom do together?
Go at the aquarium.

17. How are you and your mom the same?
I don’t know.

18. How are you and your mom different?
The same is different.
So says the Buddha.

19. How do you know your mom loves you?
Gave me a flashlight. That means you love me.

20. Where is your mom's favorite place to go?
To Pilates.

Monday, February 23, 2009

African Extravaganza

A local refugee-resettlement group called the African Community Center puts on an annual African Extravaganza at the University of Denver. Last year I went alone with Sidamo (and fetus Nora). This year Greg joined us and we made an evening of it. The food is catered by local African restaurants (including one Ethiopian, one pan-African, and one Moroccan), there's music, and several Africa-focused groups and charities set up a small marketplace. It's not a very big or terribly organized event, but it's still a nice way to spend an evening and a good cause to support.

The difference in Sidamo between last year and this year was remarkable. Last year I remember several tantrums, a lot of crankiness, a time-out or two. During the music and dancing, he just sat on my lap. This year was delightful. Sidamo actually enjoyed himself, and would have been content to dance the night away if we hadn't imposed a curfew. (And as you can see from the video, by "dance the night away," I mean "run in circles until he collapses from dizziness.")

8 months (and, it goes without saying, a few days)

Oh Nora. My sweet little monkey, what a month it's been!
  • By far, your biggest development is your forward mobility. Wow, woman, you can move! Quickly, and straight for the nastiest stuff in the house (the dog food dish, the grimy open dishwasher drawer, the soles of shoes). At least it should be building your immunity, right? (See next bullet.) One of the main benefits (for me) of your self-propulsion is that you're willing to be put down for more than 15 seconds at a time. The main benefit for you is that you can now crawl over to your big brother's train tracks, crush them, and eat the trains like some baby Godzilla.
  • You had your first ear infection, and it was horrible. You poor thing—you had a fever for several days, and it got up over 104 for about 24 hours. You were on antibiotics, probiotics, garlic oil, Tylenol, ibuprofen. It was so strange to be pumping you up with all these crazy medications, but you were just miserable and I was desperate to make you feel better. On the upside, we got to spend several days and nights just cuddling together, which was beautiful.
  • You're sticking with your belief that sleep is for babies, and you're no baby. Bedtime routines upward of five hours a night. After that you generally sleep through the night, but getting there is just miserable. We've tried so many different approaches, and the bottom line is that once you realize you're alone in your room, you cry. A lot. And so do I. I'm so sorry that moving to your crib has been such a hard transition for you. It really breaks my heart to not be able to give you what you want (plus, there's nothing I'd rather do than keep cuddling with you all night), but it's clear that this is for the best. It's gotta get easier for both of us soon, don't you think?
  • You and Sidamo have started interacting much more. You've always been a fan of his, but he's just starting to notice your charms, too. The two of you will get into little giggle-fits together, and it's abso-flipping-lutely adorable. God, I love you both so much.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Best buds

Since Sidamo came home, he's been spending at least three mornings a week with Max, my friend Jessica's son. At first Jessica and I did a babysitting swap: I'd take Max two mornings a week, and Jessica would take Sidamo for two. At that time, Max was 4 months old, and Sidamo was a little over a year-and-a-half. In other words, worlds apart.

When Nora came along, we decided to leave the babywatching to the professionals, so we now share a nanny a few mornings a week. And as the boys grow, their age difference makes less and less difference. Max has changed from being the little baby to being a true friend to Sidamo. It's magical to watch their relationship blossom. Max lights up when he sees Sidamo ("Damo" was one of his first words), and Sidamo clearly delights in the adoration. Sidamo, for his part, has developed a true affection for Max and loves to make him laugh.

I've seen this friendship developing for more than a year, but today it clicked for me as I saw the two of them lying on the floor laughing—so hard I thought they might puke—at some inside joke I couldn't hope to understand. I realized: These aren't just two kids whose moms are friends with similar work schedules; these are friends. Best friends.

This afternoon, after Cara (our babysitter) left for the day, I took Sidamo and Nora for a walk around the neighborhood. Still reflecting on my morning epiphany, I was hell-bent on engaging my 3-year-old in the feely-goodies that were coursing through my veins.
Me: Sidamo, you and Max are so lucky to have each other. Is Max your best friend?


What do you like to do together?

We like to say, "Mine!"

That's not all you like to do. You like to share, too, right?

Yeah. But Maxy says, "MIIIIIIIIIIIIIINE!"

And what do you say?

I say, "No, MINE!"

Well, honey, Maxy is a little boy. He's still learning about sharing and taking turns, and you can help him learn. What would be a better thing to say when he says, "Mine"?

Sidamo (after a lengthy, thoughtful pause):
I could say, "GIVE THAT TO ME!"

Ah well. Maybe it's best that moms (and women) don't try to understand the relationships of kids (and men).

Monday, February 9, 2009

Important parenting lesson

4 x 4

I guess I wasn't specifically tagged, but Julie did send an open invitation. So here it is, the fourth photo in my fourth folder. What a nice treat to have occasion to look through these old albums. I can't believe my little giant ever fit in the sink for baths! Flutter.

Consider yourself tagged!