Wednesday, February 29, 2012

An outsider's perspective

We've just hired a wonderful nanny, Mary Beth. Today is her second day, and I'm enjoying overhearing her and Nora's interactions. As I've noted, Nora sometimes throws people for a loop.

Somehow, Nora got it in her head this morning that she needs to earn $4 to buy a gumdrop, so I gave her some chores to do. She has been chattering about the gumdrop, and the money she's going to earn, as she's doing all this. I just overheard her say (again), "Yeah, and I'm going to earn FOUR DOLLARS! And I will buy a GUMDROP!" Mary Beth said, "You're pretty excited. Do you like gumdrops?" Nora: "No."

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Fort Bunk

Over the summer, we did a relatively minor basement renovation to accommodate the baby then known as Filbert. We transformed what was a pass-through/office into a proper bedroom for the big kids, and what was Sidamo's room became the baby's room. It required moving some walls, installing new flooring, adding closets, etc. Oh, and 19 trips to Ikea. I exaggerate, but not by much.

The kids love, love, love their new room. They had both been sharing Nora's old room on the main level, which is now my office, because Sidamo didn't want to be downstairs by himself. We put a lot of effort into making their new room fun, to make up for the fact that it's in the dungeon. One of their favorite features is the bunkbed fort we made for them.

We made the curtains out of plain white sheets, which we tie-dyed. Using about a million rubber bands and as many marbles.

While we were at it, we also dyed their duvet covers and all their stained white shirts.

The kids love the results, as you can see.

Their favorite thing to do is hide in their forts with piles of books and read with the illusion of privacy.

The curtains are attached—Nora's to the bed itself, Sidamo's to the ceiling—using the Kvartal system from Ikea. Total cost for the project was some where in the $60 range.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Like, for instance

This photo from the gathering this summer at the lovely Cathy's house (photo credit: Jayme) pretty much sums Nora up. After eating an entire bowl of watermelon slices that had been put out for a group of a dozen or so adult humans, Nora got to thisclose to finishing the watermelon slice she's holding in this picture before handing it to me, loudly declaring, "Eck, I don't like watermelon."

Hair products used in this photo: dirt, sweat, watermelon juice

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Oh Nora. She is, as everyone who meets her points out, quite a character. I do sometimes joke that her incessant, stream-of-consciousness, often nonsensical chatter drives me to drink (umm, it's a joke. really.), but it's such an integral part of her hilarious personality that I wouldn't have it any other way. This girl really and truly is hilarious. I love trying to imagine what she'll be like as a teenager, college student, adult, but it's a little hard to picture. 

Totally easy to picture, though, is what she'll be like as a crazy old lady. Because she kind of is one already. 

Sunday, February 12, 2012


It's mid-February, and I am already so, so very over winter germs. The big kids, being at two different schools, have brought home approximately a kazillion bugs over the past couple of months (none of the nasty stomach stuff, luckily, knock on wood). I don't think there's been a single week since maybe October when we've all been healthy. The baby has been spared so far, but now he's sick too. I don't know if our pediatrician is especially cautious or if this is protocol with young babies, but the after-hours on-call nurse had me bring him into the ER last night because he had a fever of 100.5. He and I were there until 5 a.m., he was diagnosed with a cold, and we were sent home. On the way to the ER my mama instincts were telling me to just turn around and go home, thinking that what he really needed was rest and not tests (ooh, I'm gonna have to write that one down). But I didn't, because of course if something went wrong and I hadn't followed medical advice, I would have felt awful. And better safe than sorry and all that.

But we're both still exhausted, even after getting in a good nap this afternoon. He's doing fine, other than wanting to pummel me with his tiny little fists 10 times a day when I need to do the nasal saline/suction routine. Poor guy. He's sleeping a ton, and of course I just want to sit next to him with a mirror under his nose to make sure he keeps breathing. Mamahood.

Oh, and he pooped on my hand while I was taking his temperature. So yeah, I'm ready for the germs to get on out of here. Anyone else?