Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Imagination

Jessica can make anything come to life. Right now she's having a couple of weapons from her knight's castle talk to some beads from her jewelry making kit. Everyone seems to be getting along.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

It's not fair!

I got up late this week on both daycare days, once because the alarm didn't go off and once because I was sleeping on the floor in the kids' room (not recommended, by the way) and didn't hear it from downstairs. I didn't have time to get both kids ready so I got Xander ready and left while Hari got Jessica ready. Now, when I get her ready, it's all must-have-dresses or must-have-pink-or-purple. I got back this morning in time to pick her up and take her to school and what was she wearing? Purple top and BLACK PANTS. I get the feeling Hari just pulls whatever comes to hand out of her dresser and hands them to her and she puts them on. It's not fair!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Counting

We have a lift-the-flap book and one of the pages shows flaps up numbered 1 to 20. Jessica impressed me by reading the numbers in order. Till we got past 10. Then she needed some help. She skipped 13, as she always does. I don't know if she's superstitious or that just happens to be a number she forgets. Then we got higher: 17-18-19....Ten-teen.

The same book also has a page with shapes. Did you know the shape of a stop sign is an optagon?

Friday, December 5, 2008

My little "help"er

I wanted to drink a diet Dr. Pepper. I had only one can cold in the fridge, so I took it out. Jessica picked it up and asked if she could help me open it. Even though I said no (nicely), she continued to hold onto it. Before I could disarm him she was "helping" me by shaking it.

I have not yet dared to open that can. Another one is currently chilling in the fridge.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

How do you answer this?

In the last two days, Jessica has said several times that she wants to "be alone." "I never get to be alone," she says. Or, "Why don't I ever get to be alone?" What do you say to that? It's not like I can just leave her alone in the house. How does a 5 year old get to be really alone?

(I won't get into wondering why she wants to be alone. Maybe she just wants to be introspective.)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Species confusion


Jessica's favorite stuffed animal is Sally, her build-a-bear dog. Sally is a siberian husky. Jessica got Sally last Christmas. In the last month or two, she's been insisting Sally is a cat. Why? Because she has pointed (triangular) ears, like a cat. We even had to buy some cat toys for Sally and her "kitten" Cookie (the matching Siberian husky puppy).

She's just a little bit crazy. = )

Friday, November 28, 2008

Mathmetician and magician

Mathmetician:
Last night I made Jessica a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Sometimes she likes them cut into pieces and sometimes she wants it whole (but NEVER with the crusts). So, I asked her if she wanted 4 small pieces or 1 big piece. She answered 5 pieces. I said I couldn't do that, thinking I couldn't cut 4 equal pieces. So I cut the sandwich in half, and then into quarter. She then told me to cut one of the quarters in half for: 5 pieces!

Magician:
Then, this morning she wanted pancakes. It was a daycare day, which means we run around like crazy things trying to get out the door in time. I told her I didn't have enough time to make pancakes from scratch, but there were a few leftover from last time we'd made them. She complained a little when I put only 4 (silver dollar sized) on her plate. "I want more," she said. Again, I explained about the time limit.

A few minutes later she said, "Look, Mom! I made more!" I looked at her plate and she had cut the 4 pancakes into pieces. Yep, there was now more then 4 pancakes.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Modeling

Jessica in the current issue of Family Fun. Sort of looks like a fish out of water, huh? ; )


In her recent shoot for the March 2009 issue of Wondertime, an article about picky eaters. (Blurry because I couldn't use the flash while the real photographer was shooting). She's "pretending" to hate brussel sprouts.



Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Introducing....the -Ator family

Hari's nickname for Xander is the Nikalator. Don't ask me why. Then Jessica became the Jessinator. Well, now Jessica is calling us the Mominator and Dadinator.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Infinite Loop

As much as I hate to admit it, Jessica likes Barbie and stuff related to Barbie. This includes these animated Barbie movies, of which there seems to be an almost unlimited quantity. I've somehow gotten myself into a bit of a situation with these movies.

We get them from the library. Unlike the books, which carry no fine (and which I'm probably at this point known as the lady who never returns her books on time), the DVDs rack up $1/day for late fines. Being as frugal as I am, I am never late with the movies. However, I am lazy, in that I never seem to be able to get to the library before I pick Jessica up from preschool (which is right across the street from the library). Therefore, we always end up returning the DVD after I pick her up. And every time she asks for a new movie. By 3:30 I'm pretty tired and worn down, and saying no is not a battle I wish to have. So she gets a new movie.

I may be able to get off the hook this week, though. We've been returning the movies on Tuesdays, because that's the day we took out the first one. However, the library is closed this Tuesday, so it's not due till Wednesday. I just have to figure out how to get to the library without Jessica on Wednesday, since she's not in school at all.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

"And (she) was a beautiful butterfly"

--the Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle


I couldn't get a good shot of the wings.

(Note the CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS behind her, in the Mall, on HALLOWEEN).

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I don't know who was more upset today

Me or Jessica. However, if you had to base it on the amount of screaming, crying and struggling, I would say it was her.

It was check-up day. Last year she had 4 shots and she remembered every single minute of it. This year she had 2 shots and a blood draw. I needed to get some of my own blood drawn, so I had put it off so we could do it together so she could see it wasn't a big deal. That didn't work out as I had hoped. In fact, it might have freaked her out more, if that was possible.

The good news is she's a healthy 5 year old who doesn't eat enough vegetables. And a friend told me no more vaccinations till high school! Woohoo! At least by then she'll be a more rational human being. Well, about shots anyway.

Stats:
39 lbs
3'7"

After last year's Screamfest, I told Hari he was taking her this year because it was awful, holding her down for shots. It wasn't much better this year, but I thought about it beforehand and decided to let her choose who she wanted to take her. After all, it wasn't about me, it was about her. She wanted Mommy, so she got Mommy.

And a new toy. Daddy probably wouldn't have done that.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Pretend real life

I love it how Jessica doesn't want to listen to anything I say to her but she'll happily play "mom" and "daughter" with a friend and listen to whatever her pretend Mom says. Maybe if I can persuade her that I'm just her pretend Mom telling her to brush her teeth and get dressed, she'll do it.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Being played (TMI warning)

Jessica is playing me for a sucker. Ever since she was potty-trained I've been wiping her when she poops. I don't actually know why I've been agreeing to this, other than the mistaken idea that she couldn't wipe herself properly.

Yesterday she had a playdate with Kemper & Rowan, while Hari and I went for a tour of Waltham with their father. When I got back, Kristin announced that she had pooped and then wiped herself without even asking for assistance.

Things are going to be changing in our house, I can tell you that.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

It's different when it's my money

Jessica is one of those kids (maybe it's every kid, I don't know) who wants EVERYTHING she sees. "I want that" and "Can I have that" are her two favorite sentences. Whenever we're shopping, if I can't/don't avoid the toy aisle, I get all sorts of begging for more toys.

Well, Aunt Nutan sent her a Target gift card for her birthday (Thank you, Aunt Nutan!). We went into the toy section and all of a sudden, she was discriminating. I kept asking her, do you like this? or do you want this? but she was very choosy. She ended up with two toys and some gum. Where the idea for gum came from since I never give it her, I don't know.

I just thought it was funny how, when it was on her dime, she didn't want everything in sight.

I see a valuable lesson to be learned with giving her an allowance.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday Bubbie-Boo!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

That girl knows how to bargain

Jessica's new thing is saying "Okay, let's make a deal" (and no, she hasn't been watching the tv show). I think she probably picked it up from me, because of my terrible parenting technique of bargaining. I should know better than to bargain with terrorists. But I digress....

Tonight, I made quesadillas for dinner. She wanted macaroni and cheese. Again. I told her no. She quickly wore me out. "Let's make a deal. If I eat 5 bites, then I can have macaroni and cheese."

It took me about 1 second to agree to these terms. I had leftovers from a previous meal; I wouldn't have agreed if it meant cooking it from "scratch" (ie: a box).

So, she started eating. I was instructed to count. "One. Two. Three." At some point she said, "I'm starting to like this," meaning the quesadilla.

"That's great," I said. I got distracted with something else, feeding her brother or eating my own dinner. She said she had taken 5 bites and I said I had only counted 4.

With no prompting whatsoever, she said, "Okay, let's start over." So she took 5 more bites. I went to reheat the macaroni and cheese in the microwave. "While you're doing that, Mom, I'll just finish this," she said.

Fine with me.

The whole thing reminded me of the time I was telling her how many bites of something I wanted her to eat. I said 4 (or whatever) and she countered with 5.

If only adult curses were this tasty

Recent phrases used by Jessica in place of cursing:
"Oh, pickles!"
"Oh, peanut butter and jelly!" or "Oh, peanut butter!"

I don't know if these are original creations or perhaps just the rage in the schoolyard but so funny to hear!

Monday, October 6, 2008

I never thought I'd say this but....

ENOUGH WITH THE DRESSES ALREADY!

I'm sick of Jessica telling me "no pants, they're for boys." She went apple picking with school today and it was pretty chilly so I insisted she wear pants. Not jeans, which I cannot get her to wear under any circumstance, but corduroys. Pink sparkly corduroys. Even so, it was a really hard sell, accompanied by much complaining. She was in the house about 3 minutes (the first 2 of which were spent on the potty) when she asked to put on a dress. Fortunately, she has about 20 dresses of various sleeve length.

Hmm....

Jessica told me this morning that I "smell like a chicken in a sock stack."

I'm not really sure what that means but I don't think it's good.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Jessica is like a cat

Well, like one cat in particular: Cassie.

Whenever I get up from the couch, even for 10 seconds, the cat immediately jumps onto where I was sitting, presumably because it's warm.

Interestingly enough, Jessica does the same thing. Probably for the same reason. Although she *says* "I'm saving it for you." Saving it from whom?

At least Jessica moves with a verbal command to do so. I have to practically sit on the cat to get her to move.

"You know we're going to beat it with a bat, right?"

Jessica's birthday party is coming up. She asked me, oh, 3 or 4 MONTHS ago to have a pinata at her party. I said yes, at the time. She then wanted to pick one out 3 or 4 MONTHS ago. I told her there was no way I was buying a pinata until it was closer to her birthday.

Now it's closer to her birthday. We were in Target yesterday and she spotted the pinata section. She picked out a horse/pony/donkey type pinata. Apparently it's a girl and is going to have babies. While she was bonding with the pinata, I told her, "you know, we're going to beat it with a bat, right?" She said yes, and continued to bond with her papier-mache animal. After a bit of conversation with it, she told me that the pinata was okay with being hit with a bat.

I hope she feels the same in two weeks.

Remorse

Yesterday we were at the mall and Jessica really wanted to go into the little play area they have, so we did. It was mid afternoon and there were a lot of kids there. Now, technically Jessica is too big for this play area, which says maximum height of 42" and I measured her just this week at 43". But she was far from the tallest kid there.

Anyway, I was reading a parenting magazine which the kids played when all of a sudden I became aware a little girl about Xander's age was crying. Her mother was sitting next to me and I heard her say to someone else "No, she didn't fall down, she was pushed" and give me a dirty look.

I called Jessica over. "Did you knock over that little girl?" She wouldn't answer. I asked her 3 or 4 times before she nodded, unable to speak.

"You need to say you're sorry." Again, I needed to ask her a few times. Finally she whispered, to me, "I'm sorry." At my insistence, she repeated it ago more loudly in the direction of the little girl and her mother.

Then she burst into tears. Such a sensitive soul! I managed to console her enough so she was able to resume playing.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Bedtime ritual

Jessica and I have developed a very satisfying bedtime ritual. After the usual (pajama changing, tooth brushing, book reading), she gets into her bed. I stand on the ladder next to her (I got into that top bunk with her exactly once and almost didn't get out alive). Then we do Hugs and Kisses. She decides how many hugs and kisses she wants. It's different every night. I'll kiss her on the cheeks. She'll kiss me on the cheeks. Then I rub her back for a couple of minutes. It's so sweet. Whenever she doesn't want to get into bed by herself, I just say, "But we have to do Hugs and Kisses," and that's usually enough to get her in.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Lies lies lies

Jessica has an annoying habit of saying Hari or I are lying if we say something that, by mistake, turns out not to be true. Twice this week, she's accused me of telling her a "cruel lie."

Friday, September 12, 2008

I have no one to blame but myself.

Last year, for the second year in a row, Jessica broke the plastic zipper on her winter coat. I went out and spent the extra money on a Lands End jacket which not only has a coil zipper which is much less likely to break, but also will repair/replace the jacket if the zipper breaks.

However, I went a bit too far in trying to save money. I bought a lime green jacket, thinking Xander can use it when he's older. Green--gender neutral, right? And it looks GREAT on her. She has gotten so many compliments on that jacket. Plus I got it last year in size 5/6, since size 4 was just a bit too small, thinking she could wear it for 2 winters, and then Xander can wear it for 2 winters.

The problem? In Jessica's girly-girl world, green is a "boy color." So is yellow. In fact, the only colors that are *not* "boy colors" are pink and purple. I think this stems, in part, from when she was 3 years old when pretty much her entire wardrobe (my choosing) was pink and purple. Anyway, I spent half of last winter begging her to wear the jacket. Now it's getting colder again and I'm already getting complaints in anticipation of wearing the green jacket.

I give up. I can't spend the next 2 winters explaining to her that green is not a boy color. So, I just went online, found an overstock deal from Lands End for a winter jacket in deep rose. Problem solved.

Plus I got few pink dresses while I was at it.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Isn't that obvious?

Some time ago, I noticed Jessica had grown a lot in a short period. I told her she was growing like a weed. She thought that was the funniest expression. Recently, we were talking about how much she's grown, and I prompted her "You're growing...."

"Like a seed!" she said. Well, you know, that works too.

Now when I prompt her, I say, "You're growing" and she says, "Like a seed and a weed." She likes to cover all her bases.

Another expression that seems obvious to a 4 year old is the opposite of inside-out. For some reason, I've always said, "Right-side out." I don't even know if anyone but me describes it like that. But Jessica's way of describing it is "Out-side out." I like that better than my way.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Suggestibility

Jessica is very suggestible. We were driving down to the beach last weekend and she was complaining she was hot. Or cold. I forget. She's like Goldilocks that way.

Now, our van has an option where the back seats can either be controlled by the people sitting there or by the person in the front row. The person in the front row gets to decide who does the controlling. So I told Jessica how to manipulate the controls to make it colder/warmer with more/less air. She fiddled with the controls until she decided she was comfortable, and was very satisfied.

I didn't tell her the controls were set so I was the one doing the controlling and whatever she was doing didn't affect the temperature.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Keen observations

Xander was sick for a couple of days. He was very crabby, lots of screaming and screeching. Now that he's better, he's much more of a joy to have around. I was saying how I was glad that the "other baby" was gone, and that Xander must have an evil twin. To which Jessica kept saying, "But Mom, it's the same baby." Then she offered to prove it by annoying him till he screeched again.

Modesty?

Jessica doesn't mind walking around naked. But there are been several times when she's been either in the house or in a semi-public place with her underwear showing. Then she says, "Mom, I'm so embarrassed. People can see my underwear."

Stall tactics

Jessica has become a champion staller. It doesn't matter what it is, she always has a reason not to do something when asked, or to ask for 2 more minutes. This happens every morning when trying to get her dressed, hair combed, teeth brushed. What she frequently says is "Wait a minute, wait a minute, I have something to tell you."

My inevitable reply is a deep sigh, and then, "What?"

This morning, her response was "Well, I don't like to do things I don't like to do."

Friday, August 1, 2008

Alert! Alert!

This is Jessica's new way of informing us something is going on that she thinks shouldn't be. Usually it pertains to Brother, who may, for example, be holding choking hazards, or there may be an insect of some type in the house. I have no idea where she picked it up, but it kind of makes me feel like I'm on Star Trek.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

How best to freak out your mother

"Mom! It's a baby dead dragonfly!"

"It's not a baby," said Dad, who helped her catch it.

"Mom! Its head fell off!"

Mom: "Get it out! get it out!"

Sunday, July 20, 2008

She's such a big girl, sniff sniff

First, sleeping in her own bed. Now, she's watching Star Wars IV: A New Hope for the first time. I always thought I'd be the one to watch it with her for the first time, though she might find it annoying to listen to me recite the dialog along with the actors. But the kids across the street, who are part-time residents, spending weekends with their father, are here this weekend. We went over to see if they wanted to play, but they had already planned to watch the movie, and they invited her to watch it with them.

What's next? Driving?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Want to see a nice picture of the kids?

Me too. But I didn't get one. This is what I got instead:

Jessica making rabbit ears behind Xander:


Xander: "What's going on?"


Xander: "Enough of this, I'm outta here."


Jessica making rabbit ears behind herself:

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Success!

I'm afraid to say this in case I jinx it, but Jessica slept in her bed by herself without Mommy for the last 2 nights. She'll ask me a couple of times in the night to come "upstairs" (which is what I've been calling the top bunk), but I'll truthfully tell her I'm too tired, and we both go back to sleep.

I gotta admit, while I was very hopeful this would work, I wasn't really sure. Now I just have to figure a way to get back to my own bed, which is a lot more comfortable than the bottom bunk. But I'll take what I can get.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

My little angel



I love this picture of Jessica. I think she looks very pretty and sweet. Earlier today, I was thinking about posting this picture on the blog while I was driving around. Right after I thought about it, a car passed me with a license plate that said "mylilangl."

Let me sleep on it

Last night was the big night. The bunkbed arrived yesterday. I had all sorts of promises from Jessica that she would sleep in the top bunk with me sleeping in the bottom bunk. She seemed excited enough about it. We got home from YMCA camp and errands at about 5:30 and she spent the next couple of hours sitting in the top bunk.

Then it was bed time. As soon as her pajamas were on, she turned into a different kid. "I want to sleep next to you, Mommy." And the tears! Plus Xander was crying because his bedtime was being affected. I tried to rationalize with her. I reminded her of all the promises she made to sleep in the top bunk. I threatened her: we have a 3 day window to return the bed if not satisfied and I threatened to do just that.

Finally, after at least half an hour of negotiations and tears, I made a deal with her: she would lay down in the top bunk while I got Brother to sleep in the bottom bunk. It worked out like I had hoped: by the time Xander fell asleep, Jessica was also asleep.

I had to make 2 trips to the top bunk in the night. Once, I was able to get her back to sleep while standing on the ladder. The second time, I actually had to climb into the bed with her, where I fell asleep for a while.

This morning I asked if I should send the bed back. "No!"

Let's hope it goes better tonight.



Saturday, July 12, 2008

I'm not sure I like this song

Jessica's own creation this morning:
"I love Mommy" (started out okay)
"Even though she's mean."

I try not to take it to heart. She said I was mean yesterday, minutes after forking out $688 for her new bunk bed.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I don't know what I did

to make her so angry:


But she sure did get happier when Daddy showed up:

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Just Grapes for Me

Earlier today Jessica was—I kid you not—sitting buck naked on the couch, eating grapes. She currently remains unclothed, with her clothes within arms reach, and had the audacity to demand that I give her a blanket because she's cold.

* * *

This morning Jessica announced she was going to be a doctor when she grows up. This was both good and bad. Good in future employment prospects and bad in terms of the price tag for Mom and Dad. Not wanting to create any false illusions, I explained to her that it was a lot of work to become a doctor (Uncle Danny will get deja vu reading this).

She then said she was going to be a nurse instead. I said that also required a lot of work.

She thought about it for another minute.

“When I grow up I'm going to be a Tooth Fairy,” she finally said.

Not the Tooth Fairy, a Tooth Fairy. I guess if there were only one, the job would already be filled.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Oh, to be 4 again

There's something so free about being a little kid. It means having instant friends. Jessica will go and play with any other kid without the least bit hesitation. Granted, there was the time last summer when a mean 8 or 9 year old told her "I'm not playing with you!" when Jessica tried to include her in her game (that made me want to yell out her for not being nice to my baby girl), but generally other kids respond very well.

Lately, Jessica has been wanting to make playdates with the kids she meets when we're out and about. The last three unknown kids she met were Jared from the fish restaurant, Nina from the drive-in and some girl whose name she didn't even get from ChildWatch at the Y. Days later, she'll ask, "Can I have a playdate with ?" as if I can just conjure them up at will.

It's too bad this doesn't work for adults. I can't imagine walking up to another adult, not even introducing myself, and just having a conversation about parenting or the last episode of American Idol.

Monday, June 30, 2008

At least she's clean

Jessica's night-time tantrums continue. She's now on a 2 day sentence of no tv. "I don't care," she assured me. Let's see what she says tonight when it's bedtime.

But at least she's clean. For some reason, she's wanted to take lots of baths lately. She's currently on her 3rd bath in a 30 hour period. I guess it's a better way to keep her occupied then letting her watch tv.