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Monday, December 6, 2010

Stop Being So Religious

What
Do Sad people have in
Common?
It seems
They have all built a shrine
To the past
And often go there
And do a strange wail and
Worship.
What is the beginning of
Happiness?
It is to stop being
so religious
Like
That.

-Hafiz, "Stop Being So Religious"

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I'ma get all poetic on you now

Just checked out "The Essential Rumi" at the library. Here's a little taste:

Where Everything is Music

Don't worry about saving these songs!
And if one of our instruments breaks,
it doesn't matter.

We have fallen into the place
where everything is music.

The strumming and the flute notes
rise into the atmosphere,
and even if the whole world's harp
should burn up, there will still be
hidden instruments playing.

So the candle flickers and goes out.
We have a piece of flint, and a spark.

This singing art is sea foam.
The graceful movements come from a pearl
somewhere on the ocean floor.

Poems reach up like spindrift and the edge
of driftwood along the beach, wanting!

They derive
from a slow and powerful root
that we can't see.

Stop the words now.
Open the window in the center of your chest,
and let the spirits fly in and out.

-Rumi

Thursday, November 18, 2010

8 weeks, 6 days and 13 hours later . . .

No excuses, except I have a life! Here's what's in it:

1. Hannah looks like this:
. . . and it kills me to see her getting so pretty, so big, so fast.

2. We went to the Renaissance Festival and met these guys:
 . . . and Hannah got to ride an "Element."

3. Halloween looked something like this:
Hannah couldn't choose between the dragon costume, the tutu, and the butterfly wings, so we told people she was a "dragon-fly."

4. I've been crocheting a lot. Unfortunately I can't post many pictures because I'm giving my projects away as Christmas gifts, but here's a preview of cuteness to come:

 

5. Hannah has been working hard on Christmas gifts as well. Here are some sneak peeks of her beautiful watercolor work:


6. We had a new addition to the family for about a day. A little woolly bear caterpillar we affectionately named "Hairy." Hannah still asks about him long after we set him free.


7. I submitted my application for grad school yesterday! Yay!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

First Fall Morsels

 You're here, Fall, and everyone's talking about you. Your brisk morning air, your pumpkin spice lattes, your back to school sales. By the sounds of it, no one would know you've only been here for two days. I think you've been in our sights and in our hearts for much, much longer.

feeding the chickens at Red Barn Farm

 pumpkins of a different color

 thank you Hannah for sitting down longer than 4 seconds

 following the drinking gourd with Amy

three generations of apples who don't fall far from the tree

When I draw from my bank of Fall vocabulary, a few of the words I find are Crisp. Fresh. Cool. Fragrant. Crunch. Sweet. Orange. Harvest. Pick. Leaves. Squirrel. Nuts. Squash. Figs. Apples. Pumpkins. Wheat. Gather. Wind. Tea. Cinnamon. Nutmeg. Simmer. Golden. Brown . . . a bevy of words that taste good because, Fall, you are a time of harvest and plenty. A time of food. What better way to celebrate your return than a bag of apples and a fistful of recipes?

 Apples from Vaughn's Apple Orchard in Weston, Missouri. Some of the only ones left after the windstorm two weeks ago.

 Apple turnovers, recipe here.

Apple strudel, recipe here.

  and my favorite so far, Apple Risotto, recipe here.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Persian Basmati Rice Pilaf

I've had this little thing up my sleeve for years now, and I can't believe I never posted a recipe!


Persian Basmati Rice Pilaf

2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 1/2 cup rice* (if using brown you'll probably need more water)
1/2 cup raisins
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste

*Obviously this calls for Basmati rice, but any type will do. I personally like Jasmine rice. If you are using brown rice, you'll need to add more water and increase the cooking time.

Sautee onions in butter until they begin to soften. Add almonds and garlic, then sautee until almonds begin to brown. Remove from heat.

In a pot or rice cooker, combine rice, sauteed mixture, raisins, curry, cinnamon, salt and pepper, and broth. Cook according to instructions on rice package, or press "start" on rice cooker and forget about it. :)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Lemon Caper Tofu

This recipe, originally meant for chicken, is from my sister. I have no idea where she got it, but we found out that tofu works just as well! Be careful when working with hot oil. When I was laying the tofu steaks in the pan, my fingers were covered in egg and flower, and I didn't realize I was actually dipping my finger in the oil! Ouchy!

Lemon Caper Tofu
Makes 6-10 servings

2 packages extra firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch steaks (this made 14 for me)
1 cup all purpose flour
Seasoned Salt (or salt, pepper, paprika, and whatever else you like)
2 eggs
2 whole lemons
1 small jar capers
Olive or Canola oil

Drain tofu and slice into 1/2 inch steaks:

Lay tofu steaks on several paper towels, and using more paper towels gently press and soak some of the liquid out of the tofu. The drier your tofu is, the better it fries up.

Mix flour with seasoned salt and pour onto a plate. Beat eggs in a bowl big enough for dipping the tofu. Heat enough oil to cover the bottom of your skillet, then dip tofu in eggs, flour, then lay in the pan to fry. Cook each side until golden brown, then remove from pan.


 Keep the frying oil to make the sauce, unless the drippings are too burned, in which case you can heat a new pan of  about 1/8 cup oil over medium-low heat and add a tablespoon or two of the seasoned flour. Squeeze lemons into pan and stir until sauce thickens a little. Remove from heat and add drained capers (If you've never cooked with capers, taste them first - they pack a punch! I love them, so I used a whole jar, but use your own discretion)
 
Pour sauce over tofu and you're done! This is great with roasted vegetables and Persian Basmati pilaf, for which I have another wonderful recipe that I'll share soon. Enjoy!


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Hummus

I'm hoping this will open a tasty dialogue with my fellow hummus-makers. Below is a pretty basic recipe that I found on this website (which, by the way, has a lot of FABULOUS Mediterranean recipes!). I really like this recipe because of the creaminess the yogurt lends. I think the liquid from it also makes blending MUCH easier. I usually double this recipe:

1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed
1/4-1/2 cup tahini
1/4 cup yogurt (non-fat is good)
3-4 leaves fresh mint, chopped
1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (she suggests 1/4 cup, which I don't like)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-3 cloves minced garlic

Mix in blender until smooth or desired consistency. If the hummus is too thick, add water by the tablespoon, blending in between to check consistency. If you're making it for a party, you can garnish your hummus with parsley, cayenne or paprika, olives, bell peppers, whole garbanzo beans, and a little olive oil drizzled on top.

If you're like me and could eat hummus all day, every day, here are some extras you can add to the blend for a little variety (use your discretion on how many to add!):

Roasted red bell peppers
Cilantro
Sundried tomatoes
Basil
Parsley (flat leaf is best, in my opinion)
Roasted Garlic
Oregano

What are some other things you add to your hummus? How do you get the best consistency? Do share! In the meantime, feast your eyes on this magnificence:

How Hummusing . . .

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Les kisses to you

Dear Hannah,

It's been some time since I've written to you. Maybe I've been lazy, or maybe your expressive nature has made my letters obsolete. Maybe I just haven't known what to say, or how to say it. The dust is finally settling from our massive uprooting to a country that at first was foreign to you but home to us. You've adjusted beautifully and I am so, so proud of the little lady you are becoming.


You are almost 2 and a half years old now, and while I will be making a new photo/video montage of your latest and greatest, I'd also like to capture you here, in my mind, so you can not only remember how you looked and sounded, but how the rest of us adored your every breath and movement.

I'm duty bound, as your doting mother, to share a few of what I affectionately refer to as "Hannacdotes."  Every morning you tackle the daunting chore of getting me out of bed, and you do it with style and panache. If the bedroom door is closed, you lay on your belly and sing songs to me through the crack under the door. "Bear Necessities," "Twinkle, Twinkle," and "Bippity Boppity Boo" are among your favorite repertoire. There I'll be, laying in bed, searching for just ONE thing motivating enough to get me up, and then I hear a sweet little voice drifting from the floor:

"Ee da da, BEAR Negessities,
da pimple Bear Negessities
aget abou' da wawies ah da tife
AMEN!
I mean da, Bear Negessities
da why a Bear can resteties
wi' just a Bear Negessities a life!
AMEN!"

On days when Daddy pitilessly benevolently leaves the bedroom door open for you to enter as you please, you patter to my side and whisper sweet nothings directly into my eardrum. "Hi Mama. Mama sweeping? Come on, Mama. Ged up! Come on!" You pick my glasses off the nightstand and put them on my face ("Eee go Mama!"), hand me a glass of water and I take a drink ("Is it gooooood?"), then pull a tissue out of the box so I can blow my nose ("Le wachoo Mama? Goooood job!") Then you pull the covers from my warm, sleepy body, take my hand, and tug with all your 30 pounds to get my . . . much more than 30 pounds . . . walking to the coffee maker. It's a wonder you don't just give up and leave me for dead. I am, however, flattered you think my presence worth the effort.

When you aren't busy eating us out of house and home (three breakfasts you eat before shouting "what about elevensies?!"), you can be found diligently taking care of your babies (of which there are five, you busy little Mama you), climbing into laundry hampers, changing your clothes 50 times, applying orange marker like lipstick, following everyone into the bathroom ("You did it, you did it, you pee-peed in the potty! Yaaaaaay Nana!"), or on lucky days when he's home, being chased by Daddy. Last week he was chasing you around the upstairs hallway/bathroom circuit, and steadily gaining, though you were swift in nothing but a diaper. Then suddenly you stopped, turned around, and with your biggest, boomiest voice yelled "STOP! Care bears . . . STARE!" Such was my pride in that moment, that had my chest puffed up any further it would have exploded, sending me flying away like a farting balloon. My little girl just quoted Care Bears! I get a little choked up just thinking about it. Just a little.

So much playing is bound to inspire mischief in my creative little sprite. Aside from the various uses you've found for markers and crayons (lipstick, body paint, wall decorators, fabric softener), you also ransack drawers, summit furniture, and jump jump jump to your heart's content until something goes CRASH and the only thing left to do is to run in the opposite direction and not look back. Those times when I catch you (and most often I do), and begin to scold, you, my little actress, will stall like a stickshift car:

"I, I, I . . . hug?"
"I, I, I . . . snack?"
"I, I, I . . . love you?"

And when Mommy doesn't budge, though it's difficult not to laugh out loud when you're trying so hard, you conjure up the most beautiful, contrite little face and say with perfect sincerity, "I, I, I . . . I sorry."


We recently moved you from your tiny pack 'n' play crib to a big girl bed, complete with purple Tinkerbell bed tent. You've not only adjusted to your new bed/nest/fort for bunnies and bears, but you've become a master of luring unsuspecting parents into your lair and capturing them in your embrace. Sometimes they don't return until dawn, so seduced are they by your warmth and sweetness. "Mama nap? Come on Mama, right here," you tap the pillow next to your head, "Mama lay down. Please? Oh, Mama. Night night." No, not tonight, sweet baby. Your siren's call is tempting, but my ribs can't take the kicking.

 you are getting sleeeeeeepy . . . 
I apologize for this waterfall of sentimentality, but I need to say one more thing before closing, my darling. I've met a lot of wonderful people in my life, Hannah, but no one has the same capacity to love and empathize as you carry in your little toddler body. If ever you accidentally:

Poke someone in the eye
Kick someone in the groin
Step on someone's face
Knee someone in the ribs
Pull something's tail
Spill someone's drink

. . . or see someone, something, hurt in any way, whether or not you are the cause of that pain, you become almost sick with grief, wrap your arms around that person/animal and say "Oh no? Le ouchy? You ok? Oh no! I sorry. Le kiss? Mmmmuah. Dere. All bedder?" Seeing how empathetic you are and knowing how very much you strive to emulate your parents, it feels good to know we're doing something worth emulating. Yesterday you were playing outside, collecting walnuts to roll down the driveway and every so often pausing to gaze heavenward and marvel at the trees. Then you were gathering muddy rocks from Nana's garden, and when you dropped a big one I thought it had landed on your foot. I gasped and asked if you were ok, and you looked at my worried face, mirrored my expression, then picked up the rock and held it next to your cheek and crooned "You ok rock? Ohhhhh. I sorry. Here, le kiss. Mmmmmmuah." Because deep down inside you is the desire to always do good, to always do right. And though you don't mean to, you will mess up sometimes and I have every confidence you'll know how to make things right. And some day, in the quiet shade of the trees you love, that rock will forgive you.

How can it not?

All my love and then some,
Mama

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Fragments of thoughts

Coming down from the thrill that was being a part of "Annie" has been rough. Really rough. I miss the people. I miss the diversion . . . spending 3 hours of my evening back stage in musty dressing rooms and between cobwebbed cement walls covered in signatures . . . it sounds dreadful, but it was bliss. It was theater. Screwed up lines and improvisations, costume changes and clouds of hair spray, eating our weight in Twizzlers while giggling that our mic packs were encased in latex condoms to "protect" them, doing sheep and velociraptor impressions between acts and making Daddy Warbucks laugh so hard he couldn't stop when we were on stage. We sold out 5 of the 8 shows. I had friends who literally couldn't come because they couldn't get tickets. It was just that good. I miss it. So. Much.

The aforementioned "adventure" that was to occur after "Annie" was a Broadway music review in conjunction with the First City Festival on September 11th. For reasons too numerous and multi-faceted to name, that didn't happen. Suffice it to say that 7 of the 10 people involved were in agreement that the show wasn't working, and wouldn't be something we could put on stage and be proud of. It was a painfully difficult decision to make, and I'm still not 100% sure it was the right one for me. . . but it's done, and it's time to move on.

Now the carpet has been swept from under my feet. Disoriented and slightly depressed, I feel like I need to be somewhere when I don't. There's more than meets the eye in that dusty old theater full of fire hazards, Stetson hats and feather boas. It draws you in with bread crumb trails and eats you whole if you're not careful. It fills your life with interesting people and forms a hunger in your heart for more. More tours through labyrinthine prop rooms and haunted basements. More opportunities to be bathed in sawdust and spirit gum. More mic checks and vocal warm-ups, curtains and backdrops, green rooms and rituals. I need an outlet for all this creative energy I had intended for the next show. I have a mind to put together a recital - a marriage of classical and Broadway songs for soprano. I'm excited to brainstorm and draw ideas and inspiration from a very dear friend and former voice professor next weekend. I'll keep you posted on that. I also looked up audition dates for the KC Symphony Chorus (they just had them recently, but will have more in January) and the Lyric Opera of Kansas City (February). I'll find something.

In the meantime, I'm trying to gather as many voice and piano students as I can. Teaching fills me, though I know it doesn't fill my pockets. Because he is trying to complete his EMT certification in one mind-blowing semester Hans is up to his ears in class work, which makes getting a job and moving out of my parents' house nearly impossible. I'm grateful for their patience and love while we try to detangle our messes and piece our post-Japan life back together before their eyes. This has been easy for no one.

For those still reading, thank you. Your open hearts and listening ears give me a safe place to keep my thoughts.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Oh yeah . . .

Hi there, little bloggy blog. I thought I would let you know that this happened:



And that I owe every happiness these past two months to the people who loved and supported me throughout this endeavor. Thank you, people too numerous to name. You don't know how much I've needed this. A tip of my hat and wave of my hand to "Annie," big breath now . . . and on to the next adventure. I'll write about that soon.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Noteworthy and Not Worthy

Between rehearsals, family reunions, holidays, a sick toddler (breathing treatments, steroids and all), and catching some nasty "bacterial pharyngitis" (a fancy word for a really, really sore throat + persistent fever) myself, I've come up with plenty of excuses for neglecting my blog, and don't know quite when I'll get back into the habit of writing, which is really starting to make me quite sad. So let's start with a list. Things worth noting:

1. Hannah's first complete sentence has been "Mama, I went pee pee. Yaaaaaay!"

2. My nephew is kicking butt on his competitive swim team. I think he's up to like, a million first place ribbons now. I'm really, really proud of him.

3. Hannah has taken to picking out her own outfits in the mornings. She pulls things out and says in a high pitched voice "Le cute?"

4. She has also taken to putting French articles in front of everything. "Le pool. Le Ethan. Le bock bock. Le Mama. Le poo poo." It's very, very, le cute.

5. I finished reading Henry Miller's "Tropic of Cancer" and have moved on to Mary Roach's "Stiff: The Curious Life of Human Cadavers." I find them equally repulsive, but the latter far more entertaining. I'm also digging Neil Gaiman's book "Anansi Boys" which I picked up in the $3 bin at Books a Million. No matter how many books I knock off, my shelf gets heavier and heavier. Sometimes I wish I had 43 eyes. The odd number leaves room for error.

6. Barack Obama was in Kansas City yesterday. He paid homage to KC barbecue by eating at "Oklahoma Joe's." Nice.

7. Anyone looking for a quick diet, try taking amoxycillin with 3 cups of coffee a day. Ok, maybe that wasn't worth noting. Man, I'm running out of material already . . .

8. I almost have "Claire de Lune" memorized, and am tackling the Pathatique Sonata in this order: movement 2, movement 3, movement . . . 1? If you don't get that joke, get thee to youtube and take a listen.

9. A lot of my dreams take place at the theater now. I had one last night that our set was like one of those emergency blow-up rafts, where you just pull the tab and WHOOSH! Warbucks Mansion! WHOOSH! Hooverville! WHOOSH! White House! I think my subconscious is on to something . . .

10. My grandma is turning 90 in two weeks. How freakin' incredible is that?

I noticed on "Stat Counter" that a lot of you are coming here for recipes. To make it a little easier, I added a list of tags below my profile picture - just click on "recipes" and there you go! I'll return to normal blogging again some day, whatever that means. For now I'm just taking it all in while it's there for the taking. Believe it or not, I haven't been this happy in a long, long time.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Oh, hello

I think the less time I have to write, the happier I am. Not because I don't love writing, but because it means I'm doing something. I have a lot to write about . . . reflections on the last 12 months of my life, Grandpa Hansen's funeral, more potty training anecdotes (I know you can hardly wait) . . . but for now I'm just unbelievably happy, and I don't want to write. (gasp!)

Auditions for "Annie" at the RCCP were this week. After a 5-day casting process, I am bouncing off the walls calmly, maturely announcing that I got that part I auditioned for! If you're either in the area or drawn to it by this news, you can see me play Grace Ferrell with a ridiculously talented cast on one of these dates:

July 30,31
August 6,7,8,13,14

I'll write again when my nerves are back in check and I can sit down to a full meal again. Or, you know, when I feel like it. :)

Yippee!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Excuse my potty mouth

I'm writing about this because I can't seem to speak 5 words in a row these days without one of them being pee pee, poo poo or potty. I decided last week that the day after Eric's funeral would be the day I'd start potty training Hannah. Why, you might ask? Why indeed. There's a lot of pressure on moms to start potty training as soon as possible. Here are some of the things people have told me:

1. You want to start potty training before your child becomes too willful and stubborn to listen.

2. Your child needs to be potty trained by the time she goes to preschool (usually around 3-3 1/2 years old).

3. It's unhealthy and unnatural for your child to "get used to" running around in her own pee and poop.

4. You'll save in diaper costs the sooner she's potty trained.

5. You are supposed to begin training at 2 years old.

6. You won't have spend so much time changing diapers any more.

7. If she's letting you know when she's wet or poopy, it means she's uncomfortable and ready to start potty training.

8. You'll help the environment by getting her out of diapers earlier.

Believe me, nothing gets a mom moving faster than making her believe she might not just damage her child but MOTHER EARTH if she doesn't make haste with potty training. I can't say that any of these reasons are a good "fit" for me. Honestly? I was curious. And bored. And sad. I needed something to do, a mission to take my mind off of myself. I also needed some good writing material. So I decided now was as good a time as ever.

Seriously, Suz?

So maybe my motives aren't pure, but here I am doing it anyway. Yes, potty training takes planning, patience, and creativity. It also takes cunning, vigilance and a touch of insanity. Do you know how grueling it is to make a 2 year old sit down in one place long enough to figure out her bodily functions? I read a book that suggests keeping "a couple" books next to the potty to keep your toddler occupied. We have a CRATE FULL. And I've already rotated new books in, not for Hannah's sake but for mine. I'd say a quarter of my day is spent huddled over Hannah on the bathroom floor singing potty songs*, serving beverages to her royal highness on her little pink throne, and reading every. book. in. the. house. I swear, if I have to read "The Belly Button Book" one more time, I think my head will implode and become a belly button itself.

In preparation for the inevitably disastrous beautifully momentous process of potty training I read the book "How to Potty Train Your Child in Just One Day," and I have to say it is a load of CRAP (sorry). The plan Teri Crane lays out sounds fun and easy: Have a day-long potty training party. In the morning give your kid a doll with diapers and have your kid potty train the doll. In the afternoon load your kid up with juice and potty train your kid. Easy peasy! Ha. Not only does the plan require you to have the energy and demeanor of a crack addict, but the language skills required of the child are that of a 4 year old:

"Each time you and you and your child discover that Dolly's underpants are wet or soiled, after you've asked the questions suggested in the accidents section, suggest, 'Let's help Dolly build her potty training memory muscles!' When you make that suggestion, tap your temples. Tapping your temples as you say the words creates a visual image to reinforce the verbal message. Explain to your child that after each accident, Dolly sits on the potty to build her potty-training memory muscles so she can remember that she doesn't have accidents in her underpants. She goes on the potty."

Like the nice urine yellow color I chose for highlighting? That's because I want to pee on this page. If I tried using words like "potty training memory muscles" with my two year old while "tapping my temples" to create a visual image, she would probably a) run out of the room, b) throw her doll down the toilet for making her life so complicated, or c) start singing "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes."

You know what I say? Ef Teri Crane's method. I'm going on the fly. I've got this potty training thing in the bag, complete with shiny new potty, colorful "big girl" underwear for Hannah, a potty chart most kids would donate their left kidney for, and a very large jar of M&M's. With bribes like this we can't possibly fail, right?

Wrong.

Day 1: The Big Girl Panty Approach: Wake up and put Hannah in new underwear. Let her have an accident so she can feel herself peeing, then take her to the potty and explain where the pee goes.

Results: She peed on the back deck twice (while playing with a bucket of water, so she didn't really "get it") and in the sun room once. Amy tried carrying her to the bathroom mid-pee, thus leaving a glistening trail of urine all the way to the bathroom, and not a drop left for the pot. We switched back to the diaper by 6:00 pm.

Day 2: The Naked Approach: I decided to let Hannah run around naked while I stalked her throughout the house with her potty. That way when she peed I could just "catch" it, and that would be our segue into potty training! Tricksy, huh?

Results: Hannah spent her morning activities sitting on the potty. She played with her bucket of water out on the deck . . . sitting on the potty. She colored her coloring books in the living room . . . sitting on the potty. She sat on the potty . . . sitting on the potty. I was beginning to believe she would never pee ever in her life again. Ever. I was also worried that I might not get a shower that day, and wondered if duct-taping the potty to her butt would be considered child abuse. My dad came upstairs with a basket of laundry that needed sorting, and needing a break from potty-stalking my kid, I dug in without another thought. Within two seconds Hannah was in the bathroom peeing in the very spot her potty USED to sit before I had the brilliant idea to follow her around the house with it. I wouldn't have found the puddle so offensive if a pile of her beautiful board books were not sitting in the middle of it. It looked like she'd just straddled them and let go. That's when I cried. I tried throwing away some of the soggy books, but my mom fished them out of the garbage and laid them on the deck to dry. Round 2 goes to Hannah. After her nap I let her play in the kiddy pool with NO swimmy diaper so she could feel when she was peeing. And you know what toddlers do when you don't put them in swimmy diapers? They poop. Twice. And when that happens, you get to spend the rest of the afternoon explaining to their cousins why flies like eating poop.

Day 3: The Pull-Ups Approach: Lots of sitting on the potty and batting of eyes. Waiting. Waiting.

Results: Nothing but a lot of dirty pull-ups. Round 3 goes to Hannah.

Day 4: The Pull-Ups/Naked Hybrid With a Little Extra Running Approach: By this point, seasoned potty trainer that I am, I can note a little twinkle in her eye when it's "time." We take off the Pull-Up and run to the bathroom together. The next 20 minutes are full of songs, books, games, and random wild goose chases around the house when she and her naked little butt manage to escape the bathroom. Around the house we go, trot trot trot, and every time she stops running (I'm assuming to try to pee), I pick her up and run her back to the bathroom.

Results: After 3 or 4 rounds of this, when I was beginning to think that duct tape might not be strong enough and a staple gun was in order, we started play "Inai inai Ba!" (Japanese Peek-a-Boo) while she was sitting down. Hand towel goes on my head "Where Mama? Inai Inai . . . Ba! Ih iiiiis!" Hand towel comes off. HYSTERICAL laughing, and in her distraction she FINALLY PEED THANK YOU GOD. Much celebrating. Much showering toddler with chocolate and stickers and presents.

And homemade frozen fruit pops . . . 

. . . an hour later we tried the same method, only she outsmarted me and peed on Mom and Dad's bedroom floor, then pooped in the pull-up I promptly slapped on her. Round 4 goes to . . .



*I'm thinking of copyrighting these:

Potty Training Rhapsody (to the tune of "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen)
Mama, just peed again
Put the pee pee in the pot
And it really hit the spot.
Mama, life has just begun,
And now I'm gonna pee on eeeevery floor!
Mama! Ooooooo.....

You Can Do It (to the tune of "We Can Do It" from Cinderella - you know, the one the mice sing)
You can do it, you can do it
You can pee pee in the potty
You can make a pretty tinkle
There's nothing to it really.
You'll keep your diapers dry,
Put a sticker on the chart,
Then dancy down the hall
You will be happier than all,
It' a lovely pee you'll put into the potty.
Hurry hurry hurry hurry got no time to dilly dally
Got to pee pee in the potty
and dump in in the toilet . . . .

Monday, May 24, 2010

Antidepressifying

Thank you, AC.

And I can't lift you up cause my mind is tired
It's family beaches that I desire
A sacred night, where we'll watch the fireworks
The frightened babies poo
They've got two flashing eyes and they're colored why
They make me feel that I'm only all I see sometimes


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Typing with broken fingers

I'm reflecting on the life and death of a great man. I'll be back. I just . . . can't do this right now.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Teeth and Poop

Have I got your attention?

Hannah has her first dentist appointment today. 16 little choppers and 4 on the way. We've come such a long way in the tooth department. Sigh.

Also, she's speaking in sentences now. Here are some of her favorites:

     Where [cow, pig, horsy, choo choo, nunny, Etan, Dack, Kokot, Thonas]?

     Ih is! (There it is!)

     Ee go (Here you go)

     Wuh GO! (Let's GO!)

     Tee tee. Wehcun! (Thank you. Welcome!)

She started calling me "Mom" the other day. Not Mama, not Mommy, just "Mom." She says it with kind of a condescending tone, if you can imagine such from a two-year-old. Like "Mom! Get me a drink!" or "Mom! Pay attention!" I don't like it. I'm not Mom. Not yet. I guess it's better than what she calls her daddy.

"HAAAAAANS!"

I think it's time I really get serious about the potty training. I got myself a little intimidated reading "Potty Train Your Child in One Day," psyching myself out and buying all the "necessary" supplies (to include a doll that pees and a book of 700 Thomas the Train Engine stickers for her progress chart), then insisting she learn how to pull down her pants, sit on the toilet, wipe, pull up her pants and wash her hands BEFORE I even let her try using the toilet. If I stick to this method, I think high school graduation as a deadline might be cutting it a bit close. I just need to devote a few uninterrupted days to camping out in the bathroom with a stack of books and a jar of M&M's, and doing a few extra loads of ammonia-scented laundry. She's well aware of her bodily functions, announcing in the middle of dinner when she's peeing. She gets this worried little look on her face, like her cat just died, and says "Uh oh. Oh no. Pee pee! Where die-der? [Where diaper?]" When I'm changing a poopy diaper, she talks about it the whole time "Heh heh. Ida poo poo. Heh heh, poo poo," like she's saying "Heh heh, I accidentally crapped my pants. How embarrassing."

She says "poo poo" with an umlaut, so it's actually more like "pü pü."

These are things I thought you should know. I'll let you know how the scream fest dentist appointment goes.