Saturday, December 26, 2015

P is Three

I can't believe my baby is three years old!  I'm thankful she still lets me rock her before bedtime after we read a few books.  Tonight I was very aware of the fact that those days are numbered and it made me cry a bit.  She won't even let me walk with her to get in bed because she wants to do it herself.  The will is strong with this one. While I know that is going to server her well one day, she can drive me insane when she sets her mind to defy me.  Here are a few highlights from this month:

  • She calls tears "crying water".  
  • She has declared that she hates vegetables and I'm convinced daily that she's going to starve.  If  I would let her, she'd live on cheese and crackers.  The other day when snack time arrived I offered her fruit, she said, "NO! I want a good snack out of the brown cabinet."  That's where we keep the crackers.  The sacred crackers!
  • I'm still amazed by how I'm biologically predisposed to love her face.  I JUST LOVE HER LITTLE FACE SO DANG MUCH!
  • She thinks all of our close friends are our cousins.  
  • When she wants something from either her dad or I and one of us says no, she goes to the other.  I didn't expect this to start so early.  Luckily we are a good team.
  • She is experimenting with yelling and pitching fits and it's all I can do not to laugh at her sometimes.  She can be so tiny and angry it's just hilarious...sometimes.
  • Her favorite Christmas present was a stretchy caterpillar that cost $2.14 and her favorite birthday present was blue Play Dough that was an extra party favor.  We really could have saved ourselves a lot of money and time here.  
  • The face in the picture above is the face she gives when she's trying to get something out of you like chocolate.  We see it often and it puzzles me how she learns to cut her little eyes and turn her little head to try to get what she wants.  WHERE DOES THAT COME FROM!?!  
  • While visiting my home state last week we stopped to visit my childhood best friend and her family.  I bought her daughters, much to her dismay, the slime that makes farting noises when you stick it back in the container thinking I want her daughters to remember me.  It was all fun and games except Polly is really into "toot" jokes now and really enjoyed stinking up the bathtub tonight.  The joke is on me now Sarah.  :)  

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Almost Three!

Today is Thanksgiving which seems like the perfect day for Polly's monthly picture because we have a lot to be thankful for around here.  I swear she smiles all the time but she loves torturing us with protesting these photos.  I'm thankful for her willpower and:

  • everything really.  The events happening around the world these days are hard to comprehend when you have such innocence surrounding you in the form of a smart, funny, stubborn, curious little girl.  I hate that she will have to understand more of the world some day but I'm extremely grateful that we are lucky enough to get to protect her from it a little longer.  At least I hope that's true.  
  • I'm thankful for all of the friends and family that we have around us who love Polly SO much.  They are all so different and that is vital to who she will be when she grows up.  
  • I'm thankful for a little girl who while sitting in a quiet Graeter's Ice-cream shop exclaims loudly, "poop is brown and so is chocolate ice-cream!
  • having a kid who's only experience with eyepatches is in reference to pirates.  We are so sorry to the gentleman at the pizza restaurant that she spotted, pointed to and yelled with excitement,"there's a pirate!"
  • I'm thankful for the excitement Polly had today when she pooped AND peed in the potty at Great Grandma's house.  She ran into the kitchen and announced to everyone, "I just did a BIG poop!"  Luckily it was dish time, not dinner time.  To her credit, it is still astonishing to me how much poop can come out of a tiny person that seems to barely eat anything.  She clogged the toilet a few weeks ago.  No joke.  She's only three feet tall.  
  • I'm thankful for so many people out there who give so much to others.  The new year is coming and while I give a lot through my work and through small charitable donations, I'd like to find new ways to give where I can include Polly.  I want her growing up in a world where she's not just living in a bubble or complaining about the way things are.  I want her to know that she can do things to make a difference in the world around her.  
  • I'm really thankful for my husband who is an awesome dad and he keeps me laughing and learning 12 years later.  Even when he gets on my nerves I still love him to pieces.  I can't wait to see what the next 12 years bring.  I'm so afraid of the speed that time moves these days.  I want it all to slow down but I do try to take the time to stop and be thankful each day.  Growing up I don't know why but I didn't think I'd have all of this.  Life is not perfect or without hurt and heartache but I'm thankful for that too. 
  • I'm thankful for having too many things to list.  

Monday, October 26, 2015

I'm Not A Thane!

This photo pretty much sums up what it's like trying to get an almost 3 year old to do ANYTHING they don't want to do.  It's hilarious and maddening at the same time.  Here's what we've been up to this month.

  • We're trying to savor the days of dressing her in what WE think is adorable or hilarious (note the suspenders above).  Since she started daycare, she wants to wear a dress everyday unless her Nirvana or Superman shirts are clean.  That's a pretty good mix I guess.  
  • Conversation between Polly and Ben: 
Polly: (looking at a can) is that paint?
Ben: no it's polyurethane.
Polly: I'm not a thane!
  • Every night there is something that prevents her from going to sleep like:
Polly crying in bed, I enter concerned.
Me: Polly, what's wrong?
Polly: (crying) My foot is sticking out of the blanket.
  • In order to go to bed she must have the following things in her bed with her:
    1. Bear
    2. Little Bear
    3. Baby Bear (not to be confused with little bear, little bear is SMALLER!)
    4. Little Kermit
    5. Baby Kermit
    6. Pink blanket
    7. Flower blanket
    8. Other blanket
    9. Bear's blanket (a tiny cloth that was cut to be a pretend kitchen towel)
  • She is definitely in a developmental stage where she is testing her boundaries and authority.  Tonight we had a debate about who would put the cup on the counter that SHE was holding.  I asked her to sit it on the counter, she says "no you sit it on the counter."  I'm learning a lot about patience.    

Saturday, September 26, 2015

2.75 Years Old

This month was a blur.  Daycare sickness struck twice and the last one knocked me out.  I foolishly tried to work through it and finally had to throw in the towel.  Here are a few highlights through the fog:

  • We've started venturing out of the house without pull-ups on.  She's successfully marked some territory yesterday alone including a busy furniture store floor.  The shop clerk thanked us for telling him in a way that let me know that this wasn't the first time but most people seem to dash.  Note to self.  
  • While driving in the car the band Hole came on the radio and Polly asked, "why is she sad".  I gave her the general, "I don't know" answer.  I figured trying to explain Courtney Love to a 2.5 year old would be too difficult.  I asked Polly if she wanted me to turn on a different song and she said, "no, I like it."  
  • My mom and stepfather came to visit and I love seeing my mom play with my little girl.  It's sort of magical.  
  • Riding in the car I hear a sad tiny voice say, "why is the sky grey, I want it to be blue." Welcome to most days in Cincinnati kid.  
  • We may be known to frequent Skyline on Wednesdays.  This past Wednesday we had different plans but when I picked her up from school she said, "I want Skyline!" Figuring a 2.5 year old doesn't know it's Skyline Wednesday I asked her how she knew it was Wednesday and she said to me seriously, "I know it's Wednesday because I want to go to Skyline."  That is an interesting way to tell the days of the weeks but it seems to be working for her.  I'll stick with my iPhone calendar.  
  • The smile on her face above is right after I asked her if she wanted some juice.  She is in for a serious shock when she realizes that her "juice" is 1/4 juice and 3/4water.  We also need to at some point tell her that a glass of water at a restaurant with two lemons squeezed into it isn't lemonade.  I sure will miss it when making shit up doesn't work anymore.  
  • It's terrifying to love someone this much.  I feel lucky everyday even when the days are hard and long.   

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Two and Some Change

This kids is just fun to hang out with and growing so so fast.

  • She talks about monsters but then reassures us that they aren't real.  "Don't worry mom, monsters aren't real."  
  • She says creepy things. On the way to drop her off at day care one day she sadly said, "I'm going to give you a hug and a kiss and I'm never going to see you again." Well doesn't that just start your day off terrible.  I assured her that I would see her later but she repeated her statement TEN TIMES.  So I drove very slowly to and from work that day and watched my back just in case my kid could see the future.  I made it and she did indeed see me again.  
  • These are lyrics we thinks she either made up or they are listening to toddler punk rock music at day care.  We are cool with both options.  First she counts to three and begins pounding on her drums, "watch out for me, watch out for me, 'cause I'm a kid!"  Consider yourself warned.  
  • We took Polly to see her first movie Shaun the Sheep.  She sat through the entire thing and ate popcorn like a pro.  On the way home she was still munching on some popcorn and we heard a kissing sound so we asked what she was doing back there and she said, "I'm giving the popcorn a kiss because it's going bye bye in my mouth."  That is my kid for sure.  I love popcorn so much.  In fact I nearly ate an entire large popcorn myself which caused me to have to take Tums, get Ben to rub my back and then sleep sitting up straight for a while.  
  • She still loves her bear.  He helps her brush her teeth, she shares her food with him and he even uses the potty when she does. It's cute and hilarious but that thing is getting disgusting.  

Sunday, July 26, 2015

2.5 +

This girl is fun.  She's such a person now.  She asks me what I want to do today, she shares her food with me, and randomly tells me she loves me.  She also screams at me, saying "NO TICKLING THAT'S NOT NICE" as if I'm the worst human ever, but then turns around and asks to be tickled.  It's like having a tiny, tiny teenager that you can carry around.  It's hilarious even when it feels awful and hard.  Here are some highlights from this month:

  • She's getting the hang of potty training except for those moments when you aren't paying attention.  I think she just wants to keep us on our toes.  I can just see her thinking, "ha, they think they really have this down.  I'll show them!"  
  • She always thinks the lower case letter m looks like it's sad.  This concept makes my insides scream with cute, gross feelings of love and fascination.  Her little mind thinks the letter looks sad!!!  
  • Here's a random thought she recently said aloud to me as if we were in an disagreement that I wasn't aware of.  After a long period of silence she says shaking her head, "I don't live up in the trees.  I'm not a squirrel, I'm Polly."  
  • Polly points to Stephanie's hair, our awesome babysitter and friend, "Is that your hair?"  
  • She peed on our new couch, not the cushion, the side of the couch.  How does that even happen!?!?  
  • She started daycare this month and has adjusted so well.  She didn't even look back on the first day.  She was just excited to meet new friends and play with new toys.  She likes to introduce me to her friends and it's hilarious.  On the second day we opened the door and she announced to the room, "I came back!"  There is nothing better than starting the day dropping her off and being surrounded by cute little kids who are so excited to see both of us.  
  • She makes up lots of songs.  

Saturday, June 27, 2015


What a day.  Today the Supreme Court ruled that it is legal for all Americans, no matter their gender or sexual orientation, to marry people that they love.  Driving to work this morning I was listening to NPR before the decision and thinking about the funerals in Charleston and my little girl Polly growing up in this confusing world.  I have to say I was feeling pretty down about all of it.  It made me want to listen to Why? performed by Nina Simone.  I've had her album, 'Nuff Said! for years and this song has always struck me but the words were particularly sharp today in light of the recent events.  It's painful that we have come so far but we are still struggling to love one another, be patient, empathetic, and tolerant of our differences in order to see all of our similarities.  THEN, I'm standing in line waiting for a sandwich and the news of the Supreme Court decision reached me and I couldn't help but cry thinking of so many friends and family members who maybe never thought this day would come.  There is hope!  If we keep pushing things can change!  My funny, curious little daughter will never know a time when marriage wasn't simply for people who LOVE.  We still have a lot of work to do but at least there is hope.

As if this weren't enough, here are a few highlights from this month:

  • Someone please tell me the secret to potty training.  Please.  PLEASE!
  • Being a working mom is hard.  Okay, being a mom is hard but this week Ben had a canceled flight so I had to work while trying to wrangle a 2 year old for part of the day on Wednesday.  Just when I thought I had it mastered, I was on a conference call when I heard her fall (she was supposed to be watching TV and eating her snack).  I go into the other room with my line muted only to find that she had slipped in her own pee.  She proceeded to skate around in it like she was Nancy Kerrigan as I tried to wrap up the conversation as I tried to contain the splashing.  I'm lucky to have an understanding boss and a enough sense to realize that while this was frustrating, it was also hilarious.  
  • Random funny things that she has said.
    • "Your arms look like hand sticks."  I love the way she breaks down the world around her.  My arms simply look like sticks that hold my hands.  
    • While watching a show she exclaims, "look mommy, she has a vacuum just like daddy!" I feel proud that she didn't say mommy then immediately felt defensive.  I use it too! 
    • She likes to yell, "what's going on here?!"  
  • A conversation with Polly:
    • Polly: Oh no! (touching her forehead with both hands looking worried)
    • Me: What's wrong?!
    • Polly: I lost my eyebrows! (I could tell she's worried...mostly because of her eyebrows)
    • Me, moving her hands down to her eyebrows:  No, they are right there.
    • Polly:  Oh, there they are.  (goes on with her business)  
  • Some days when she wakes up I'm convinced she's taller and says more words than she did the day before.  
  • Sometimes I think she knows she's growing up too fast and she asks me to hold her like a little  baby.  I'm always happy to as I cling onto the tiny little bits of baby that are still left.  
  • She loves to paint and make music and that all makes me very happy.  

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Almost 2.5

May was a really long month.  I traveled, Ben traveled and this girl grew and changed a ton at a speed that has me begging for time to slow down.  SLOW DOWN!  Look at her!  Her hair in little pigtails, she's wearing training pants and she went most of yesterday and today using the potty.  WHAT IS HAPPENING?!? Here are a few highlights from this month.

  • She picked out the sandals that she's wearing in the picture above.  She wanted the ones with sprinkles.  
  • She FINALLY let me put her hair in pigtails.  I know I've already mentioned this above but it's a pretty big deal.  She loved to rip them out as soon as I got them in.  She refused hair bows or any kind hair restraint.  I sort of loved her rebellion and crazy hair but she looks so big and cute with her pigtails!  They also keep her from getting mad at the wind.  
  • She thinks it's funny to wipe off my kisses!  
  • I went to the grocery store the other day for beer and training pants.  They really should be sold together as a package deal.  Having a ticking pee time bomb on your hands is really stressful.  Why oh why did we buy a new couch with a toddler in the house?  
  • She can finally talk in a robot voice.  That's not on the doctor checklist of developmental milestones but it really should be.  Somehow she does a much better job of brushing her teeth when I talk in a robot voice.  
  • She likes for me to draw her pictures of bowls of mac & cheese.  That's normal right?  
  • Random things she's said this month:
    • "Every rocket needs an astronaut."  I'm sure this is from a TV show but it still sounded hilarious coming out of the mouth of a two year old.
    • While watching a movie about whales..."I used to be a whale." This one creeped me out for some reason and I'm pretty sure I would have remembered that.  
    • "I have hair like a lion, ROAR!"  It's pretty true really.  
  • Miss Beth, Polly's awesome sitter since she was three months old, is moving on to new work so Polly's last day there is Friday.  It makes me so sad but I know this is the first of many changes for Polly.  She will miss her best buddy Geoffrey though and I will miss all of the stories of their field trips and all of her outside time.  We have been very lucky to have such a loving situation for her for so long.  
  • I worry too much about everything.  You name it, I've worried about it.  I'm saying this to remind all of the awesome mamas out there to give yourself a break.  You're probably doing a great job, particularly if you are worrying about doing a great job.  At least that's what I tell myself.  
  • Polly has a really awesome dad.  

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Not So Terrible Twos

The only way we could get her to sit still was the rainbow slinky.  This month has felt LONG and it seems like Polly has grown a yard since the last update.  Some of her 2T pants are starting to turn into capri pants just in time for the weather to turn warm.  I am fall down tired tonight after a crazy month that culminated with a rainy yet successful Crafty Supermarket on Saturday.  I am definitely feeling like my weekend needs a weekend.  Here are some updates from this month.

  • We are starting to understand where the term "terrible twos" got it's name.  There are many versions of this conversation that happen in our house on a daily basis.
    • Me: Polly it's time to use the potty, do you want me to put the seat up for you?
    • Polly (in a sad voice):  Yes.
    • Me: Okay, are you sure?
    • Polly (in an even sadder voice): Yes.
    • Me (putting the seat on):  Here you go.
    • Polly(crying and stomping up and down): NO!
    • Me: what's wrong?
    • Polly: I WANTED TO DO IT!!!!
  • What they don't say about this age though is how awesome it can be.  It really has to be or people all over the world would only have one kid.  They would NEVER have a two year old and then think, let's do that again if it weren't also awesome at the same time.  Yesterday she held my face in her hand and told me she loved me in a most genuine sweet way that I thought my heart and brain would explode. 
  • I often see her taking care of her dolls or stuffed animals in the most gentle way and I can hear her saying sweet little things to them that I say to her, "I won't let you fall", "do you want to lay your head on my shoulder" and it makes me melt.  
  • She sometimes starts sentences with the word "actually" and I find myself realizing that I'm closer to having a 15 year old than I am to being a 15 year old myself.  
  • We recently gave her this What a Wonderful World book. It's become a nightly favorite.  I usually sing it to her despite my terrible voice and she has started to sing along too.  This song is one of those songs that I've heard so many times that I don't really hear it but reading this book to her each night, I get a little lump in my throat every time.  There is something about these lines that summarize all of the hopes that I have for her.  
I hear babies cryin'. I watch them grow
They'll learn much more than I'll ever know 
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Three years

Today marks three years since we found out that a tiny human was coming to live with us for a while.  I've read a lot of mommy blogs about this change and I don't find myself to be a part of the camp that feels like I found out who I was when I became a mom or that I found myself when I became a mom.  I also can't really say that I even know what those two statements really mean to be honest.  I do think that having a daughter has made me less afraid to share my feelings and be more vulnerable to love and affection of others.  It's made me want to be a stronger woman and a good role model for her.  It's made me want to try even more things that are hard or that I'm afraid of because I want her to do the same.  It's made me value my relationships more for reasons that I don't really understand yet.  Maybe it's that I see my own mortality in her youth.  Tonight I was driving home from an event, thinking about what a difference three years can make and this song struck me a bit.  She made me love more.  

Thursday, March 26, 2015

2 years + 3 months

It's 8:35p.m. and I'm in bed.  This month has kicked my butt at work and Polly has been in high speed when I get home so that makes for one tired momma.  Note that she is wearing the exact same outfit as last month.  It's her dad's favorite so it goes on whenever it's clean.  It amazes me each month that passes how different she can look.  Day to day I don't notice the subtle changes in her appearance but then a picture just hits me over the head with how fast time is flying.  While work has been crazy, I've been doing more to be more present with her each night and weekend.  We've been having lots of fun with the weather warming up a bit.  Here are a few highlights:

  • I can't remember the context but last Friday she said in response to something someone said, "That's not my job."  
  • Another favorite is when I ask her to hand me something while she's busy and she says, "you get it YOURSELF".  
  • She also likes to pretend to be busy with something and say, "I'm working".  That one makes me feel slightly guilty but I also like the idea of her pretending to be "working" which usually involves Legos and toy power tools.  
  • She gives the best hugs and kisses.
  • I can't get enough of her pure joy when I get home from work or when I pick her up from her babysitter.  She yells "MOMMY" and throws her arms up in the air and it melt my heart.  
  • Being a parent is one of the most complex feelings I've ever had.  I love her SO much and die to spend more time with her daily but at the same time there is something so satisfying about driving in my car alone with my own thoughts or settling into my quiet office at the start of the week.  Complex is the best way I can describe it.  I wish people talked about this more.  Maybe there would be less mommy guilt out there killing our self esteem.
  • I'm so proud of how independent she is.  She has never once cried when I've dropped her off at her babysitter's house.  That is a testament to how much she loves being there (thank you Ms. Beth!).  It was very hard to drop her off there at 3 months old and head to work (two years ago this week).  While I wish I had a longer leave to be with her and believe the maternity practices of this country need to change, I also love how she has her own little life that she gets to explore away from the safety of her parents and that makes me very happy.  Now she's getting old enough to tell me to some degree what she did that day and it's so fun to hear what she takes away from her days there.  We are lucky.  
  • She has long and in-depth fake phone conversations that make me realize how annoying I sound on the phone.  
  • We are still working on the whole potty training thing.  I may never quit being shocked by how adult sized poop comes out of a tiny, tiny person.  We haven't been very disciplined about it but I'm comforted by a question a wise coworker asked, "Do you know any adults who aren't potty trained?" Nope and hopefully our kid isn't the first in the history of mankind to wear diapers to college.  
  • She wants to be outside constantly.  She loves dirt, rocks and any moving creature outside.  She has been helping me water some newly planted flowers and I love seeing how seriously she takes it.  It reminds me of helping my grandmother in her garden and flowerbeds in the summer.  I loved feeling helpful and I think she loves it too.  
  • She is fiercely independent and wants to DO IT HERSELF with everything.  It makes getting in the car take a lifetime when I'm trying to get to work but she's teaching me a lot about patience and slowing down.  I enjoy letting her scale the gigantic car herself and see the pride in little face when she makes it on her own into her seat.  
  • There is no hurrying a 2 year old so just give up!  Yet I try each day and each day I fail.  

Thursday, February 26, 2015

26 Months or something

Polly is basically an adult now.  We took this picture tonight instead of our usual morning pic.  We were too busy playing with some new Legos this morning.  Best toy ever.  We have full conversations and she doesn't forget a thing which makes navigating conversations and life around her interesting for sure.  Here are a few highlights.
  • I mindlessly watched this video on Facebook this week while Polly played with Legos.  It seemed harmless enough, a German guy doing a cover of an LL Cool J song with his parents. Polly came and sat down to join me for the last half.  It made me laugh and then I went on my way.  Later on I can hear her saying in the kitchen, "mama said knock you out" clear as day with a slight German accent.  Ben had lots of questions.  I forgot to warn the babysitter but it hasn't come up.  
  • Weeks after visiting my best friends house we go for another visit.  Polly walks in and immediately asks for goldfish crackers which she had last time she was there and then asked where their television went.  I didn't even notice that they had moved it but she did.  
  • Potty training is still going slow.  SO slow.  I haven't spent this much time sitting on the bathroom floor next to the toilet since I turned 21.  
  • She randomly asked a woman in the grocery store, "how are you doing?" in a really concerned and genuine way. She also offered above mentioned BFF a sparkle water when she arrive at our house the other day.  I would say that she is polite but she will also quickly say, "don't touch me" and this morning as I was leaving for work she sternly said, "I don't love you!" as I walked out.  
  • She sings all the time.  I put her in bed an hour ago and she just randomly started singing the ABC's.  And now there is silence.
  • Her favorite music requests in the car right now are daddy songs, Bruno Mars, and Mark Ronson.  Sometimes she asks for "got da base" which translates to All About That Base.  I thought we were going to be better influences on her.
  • We still have nightly dance parties.  
  • She likes to look for school buses on the way to her sitter's house and it breaks my heart that some day she may have to get on one of those big scary things.
  • $90 in snow suits and she spent one whole minute in the snow.
  • She still calls our friend Matt, Map.  I may never correct her.  
  • Sometimes I watch her when she doesn't know I'm there and she's in her own little mind thinking her own little thoughts and I feel like my heart is going to explode.  

Monday, January 26, 2015


I actually think for the first time since Polly was born, but this month took forever.  It's January and I'm hating the cold this year.  Our beautiful walking neighborhood and backyard make me yearn for warmer weather each day.  I can't wait to go for walks and watch Polly collect acorns that we eventually find all over our house.  Unfortunately we probably have several more weeks of this cold.  Luckily we have a pretty entertaining little lady to get us through.  Here are a few highlights from this month.

  • She is obsessed with tunnels.  She calls bridges tunnels.  She wants us to make tunnels for her to crawl through and she even sometimes refers to her mouth as a tunnel.  This comes in handy when you are trying to get her to eat something she doesn't want to but I think she's on to me now.  
  • When someone hurts themselves she gets very concerned and hearing her little voice get small and caring as she asks, "are you okay"makes my heart explode.  
  • She refers to television shows as programs.  It's like having a tiny elderly person around the house.
  • Potty training is going slowly but we get lots of quality time in the bathroom reading stories.  She now knows that she lives in North America.  She's only pooped on the floor once.  
  • She thinks the lyrics to Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star are twinkle twinkle lady star.  I hope she never learns the right words.
  • She now grabs things like a crayon or a screwdriver and says, "I have an idea!"  I'm not sure she knows what an idea is but it's pretty darn cute.  
  • I'm so lucky to have a job that let's me work from home even just once a week.  I love getting to hear the little conversations between Polly and Ben as I work from my office upstairs.  
  • We bought snowsuits for the whole family and it hasn't really snowed since November.  I believe this purchased changed the weather for sure.  If we didn't have them, there would be a daily blizzard.