Thursday, March 22, 2012

How We Do

I haven't written lately to discuss how much I love staying at home with Zoey.

The end.

I kid, I kid. But now I totally understand the biological instinct to love your child unconditionally, because that other instinct to sell them for a nickle kicks in right about the time they learn to make that really awful high-pitched whining noise when they don't get what they want right exactly when and how they want it. So now I get it; the terrible-twos start right around 1 and a half and last until 25.

But that is a very small portion of what goes on, it's just very obvious given her otherwise sweet and playful nature. She's at a very fun age where she loves to play with other kids and they love to play with her. She loves to repeat everything, and copy what we do. She rushes into the bathroom if the toilet seat cover is up because she is convinced putting it back down is an integral part of the routine. It feels like we're getting closer to potty-training, the other day she looked at me, said, "poopy," and then did it, so now I just need to get my ass in gear to get her to the toilet. In the meantime, she's discovered her toilet also serves as a stool.

 And loves more than anything to brush her teeth, and will ask you twelve-million times a day if she can brush her teeth. Then wash her hands.

Somewhere in between brushing her teeth and washing her hands, she'll settle in with a bowl of Cheerios and PBS morning programming. She loves Curious George, The Cat in the Hat, and especially SuperWhy. They just wouldn't be entertaining for children if they didn't make parents want to blow their brains out.

 Although it was determined that I haven't actually gained any weight, that I've in fact lost 2 pounds, I still want to do Yoga. And I get the added bonus of doing it on a bed of Cheerios.

 So then she starts doing Yoga of her own since playing in the lower part of her bassinet is the best thing ever, but she's just a wee bit big.


 Our mornings are pretty low-key. Well, she has tons of energy but she doesn't seem to mind that I don't, and she's content with running around the house using her vibrant, little imagination. She loves books and loves to pull out and look at Mommy's books, even if there aren't any pictures.

 Next activity: hauling her horsey out from her room, snacking on crackers and Yo Gabba Gabba-watching.

Greatest picture ever. She's starting to get the idea of the camera, when I pulled it out to take this she gave me this grin and said, "picture."

Sometimes she'll run in her room just to give her stuffed animals a snuggle; specially as it's getting closer to nap time. She naps on a set schedule now, 2 hours a day. She knows exactly when it's coming and when I say, "Ok, nap time," she gathers her beloved sleeping necessities and hauls them to her room. She even throws them over the crib rail into the crib and tries to climb in (which sucks because soon she'll start to try climbing out).

 She loves this toy I just happened to find at Ross. On the other side is a telephone. I showed her how to spell her name with the writing utensil and she's completely fascinated by it, bringing the toy up to me and saying, "Zoey." She drew this all by herself then brought it up to me and said, "Foofy (aka dog)."

 Durby knows when it's nap-time, carving out a little space for himself. He is so good with her, he loves it when she climbs all over him. He's even shared his ball with her (something we try to strongly discourage). He just needs to work on not getting so wild with his feet.

 Late one morning, but not necessarily nap-time, Zoey just wanted to hang out in her crib. I brought in some books for her, the ones she likes to [have me] read and/or flip through the most - Ladybug Girl and Peekaboo Baby.

She's also recently discovered the art of jumping on (or in, as the case may be) the bed.

 A lot of times after her nap, she's still in lounge-mode for awhile; until she realizes she doesn't have any food in her hands. Looks like horsey is pretty tuckered out too.

I'm a complete worry-wort, paranoid, nut-job of a mother so I swore I'd wait until my kid was 10 before allowing them anywhere near a peanut. But then I did what any rational, information-seeking individual does - googled. Turns out, if either the mother or father have a family history of peanut allergies, you're supposed to wait until they're 3 years old. As in our case, if no one in your families are known to have a peanut allergy you can introduce it after a year. So we did and, of course, like any red-blooded American child, she likes a good PB&J now and again (although I can't for the life of me understand why she doesn't like macaroni and cheese).
 The first heart I drew for her in a new Skippy. I don't know how it started (maybe my grandmother??) but my mom would always open a brand-new jar of peanut butter - creamy or chunky - and use a knife to carve a heart in the top. I'd do it when I was a teenager and always try to maintain the heart shape as I dug out peanut butter. It never worked.

 After - or during in this case - lunch it's often time to go outside; it's time for you to get tired, baby!

 It only dawned on me after I gave her the sandwich that the moment you give your child their first PB&J is the moment Jelly is on everything, like Christmas tree tinsel or Easter basket grass.

 Of course we can't go anywhere without first putting on some socks! Both of Daddy's girls like his socks (wearing a pair myself as we speak).

 I told her to stand there so I could take a picture of her in her socks, and she did! :-)

 Since it's been such a mild winter - to say the least - I've been able to take her to the neighborhood playground more often than I thought. These pictures are old, back when a day actually called for coat, hat, and mittens, unlike our 75-degree day today.

 There are three main things she likes to do at the playground that are on repeat: have me help her go down the slide, swing for hours on end, and climb up the giant step (as pictured above), then climb back down the other side of the giant step (as pictured below) over and over again.

When we get home from the playground we usually go out in the backyard for a bit as well. The dogs cry and carry on like we've just come back from space travel so we let them out and watch as they play. All of that crap behind her isn't ours, but that doesn't really make it any better, does it? There is an outside storage/porch thing that is technically ours but we let our neighbors (the Santas-in-March, two-bags-of-toys-giving neighbors) use.

She loves to play with her toy balls and the dog ball while she's outside.

By then, we're pretty pooped and ready to wind down the rest of the day with some moo.

Besides being court-side to all of this adorable-ness, I get things done around the house, and I bake. Just call me June!

 These are chocolate chip chocolate cookies that tasted like balls of dirt.

 I got the recipe from the all-cookie-all-the-time cookbook my mom sent me for Christmas, which is not a testament to the recipe or book as much as my baking skills. I follow the recipe, are things just designed to taste like the inside of packing material?

 From this other cookbook my mom gave me I made a chocolate apple cake. It was pretty good but still lacked in the indulgence department. It ultimately didn't end up satisfying my late-evening chocolate craving; something only dark chocolate can cure..... *Homer drool*.... so I forgot about it.

I love staying home with my Zoey, I really do. There's nowhere I'd rather be, and there is no the other cranky person I'd rather deal with. And she's the only one who can turn me from mad to sweet in 2-seconds flat. And you all thought that wasn't possible! Miss Z is already breaking those glass ceilings.