Noah saw a marble set and really wanted it and I really wanted him to go to bed without sneaking out and down the stairs to "help with the dishes," so We struck a deal; he would stay in bed after he was kissed goodnight and I would get him a marble set.
I took a video of him using it and asked him how long he had to work for it. His reply, "like seven years." Yes, something like seven years.
Next step is getting him to stay in his bed all night long. I'm going to have to start saving up.
Claire is back on dance classes. I don't have any pictures of her--which is a shame because she is suddenly all long limbs and graceful movements.
The only picture I have from dance class is of Millie. Millie is too, too noisy for dance, so she and I walk the halls, while Noah plays on the iPad. Millie's favorite thing to do is have me lift her up so she can peer through the galley windows so she can point at Claire.
This are changing pretty fast around here. Not only are we tying our own shoelaces, but my kids have started telling me that they want to play by themselves. Claire has been going off to her room for a couple of days to play with dolls by herself. This morning Noah followed suite and told me that he and Millie wanted to play by themselves. I had a lovely 20 minutes before Millie came upstairs crying.
This week I also worked my first daytime shift since I had kids. I asked a neighbor about babysitting and we have a deal worked out that benefits everybody. I had nightmares about it the night before, but luckily I have a highly supportive husband who helped me get the kids ready, work was good and I felt more engaged because I was a regular daytime employee instead of the night/weekend employee, and the kids had a great time at the babysitter. Everybody wins.
I used to wake Claire up 45 minutes before school started. She likes to take her time in the morning and I've found that 45 minutes isn't really enough. Lately I've been waking her up an hour and 15 minutes before school and we seem to be a little better off. Less stressing out about shoes and how much time she takes putzing around the house.
This morning I took a second to appreciate what a few extra minutes in the morning means to us.
Claire was brushing her teeth when Millie joined her. Claire took care of Millie all on her own.
We had our first snowfall today--just a skiff that didn't last until lunch, but it was still falling when they woke up. Claire and Noah camped out by the window to watch. Claire turned to me and said, "mom, it's just like fireflies."
That look of concentration on her face. Is she not just the most adorable?
How is it that I have a child who knows how to tie her own shoe? I remember learning to tie my shoes. I remember the feeling of freedom that came with it. (Of course, I learned to tie my shoe under great duress--I had lied to my best friend and told her I already knew how to ties shoes while we were putting our shoes back on after jumping on the tramp. Through some miracle I actually did tie my shoe and then proceeded to run all over the yard and into the house screaming that I could tie shoes now. Claire's first time tying her shoes feels like a more honest victory than mine did.)
After watching that video, you're probably thinking, "Wow, that was a lot of noise and mess." And maybe you're giving me some credit and thinking, "it was probably just a crazy moment." Nope. It's always like that. One of the struggles that we're having is finding a time to have time for Claire to sit down and practice reading her books from school. Any time we try to do it there are 2 crazy people running around, jumping on laps and trying to steal the books. If we wait until bedtime everyone is tired and grouchy and things don't go well. So we haven't found a solution yet, but we're working on it.
This piece by Anne Lamott is one of my favorite thoughts on body resolutions. I love it. I know it's long but it's worth it. Here's an excerpt
We need to talk.
I know you are planning to start a diet on Thursday, January 1st, I used to start diets, too. I hated to mention this to my then-therapist. She would say cheerfully, " Oh, that's great, honey. How much weight are you hoping to gain?"
I got rid of her sorry ass. No one talks to ME that way.
Well, okay, maybe it was ten years later, after she had helped lead me back home, to myself, to radical self-care, to friendship with my own heart, to a glade that had always existed deep inside me, to mostly healthy eating, but that I'd avoided all those years by achieving, dieting, binging, people-pleasing, and so on
I may have mentioned several hundred times that I have had the tiniest, tiniest struggle with food and body image for the last--well, life time. Hardly worth mentioning. It is a long story, having to do with childhood injuries to my sense of self, terrible anxiety, and the inability of my parents to nurture my soul: so starving and chastising myself cannot possibly heal this. I hate to say it, but only profound self-love will work, union with that scared breath-holding self, and not a diet that forbids apples, or avocado. Horribly, but as usual, only kindness and grace--spiritual WD-40--can save us.
Can you put the scale away for a week? Okay, then how about 4 days? I have been addicted to the scale, too, which is like needing Dick Cheney to weigh in every morning on my value as a human being. Can you put away your tight pants? Wear forgiving pants. The world is too hard as it is, without letting your pants have an opinion on how you are doing. I struggle with enough esteem issues without letting my jeans get in on the act, with random thoughts about my butt.
My favorite parts are, "Horribly, but as usual, only kindness and grace--spiritual WD-40--can save us," and "The world is too hard as it, without letting your pants weigh in on how you are doing."
So this year I'm not letting my pants weigh-in on my worth as a person.
This year I am going to:
Not leave the gym without doing some core strengthening exercise. I've never had a strong core but the babies have really done a number on it. No more thrown-out back for me.
Get a general practitioner. I have an OB and an Endocrinologist, but I don't have a GP. I'm going to fix that this year.
Go with a bold lip
Figure out how to do my eyebrows
Go to the dentist. I don't really want to talk about it. It's been too long, but it's necessary.
Find 1 song per month I want to learn. This year the hubb's Christmas gift giving game was on point. He got me guitar lessons. I'm so excited and I can't wait to start finding songs I want to learn.
Send one book chapter to my mom. I started writing a book last year and it's terrible, like totally, awfully terrible and I don't really care. I'm going to work on it.
May each of you have a lovely 2016 and may your pants have no part in deciding your worth as a person.