Sunday, August 22, 2010

A Diaper-Free House is on the Horizon

I can see it.

At first it was like a mirage shimmering in the distance.  A house free of diapers.  The expense, the stench, the battle, all gone. One morning about two weeks ago, my 21 month old son dragged the training toilet into the living room where his sister and I were watching an episode of Curious George, and said, "Poop!"  Since I'm a fly by the seat of your pants kind of girl, I thought why not, took off his diaper and sat him down on the toilet.  Of course, nothing happened but the little man sat there for the next twenty minutes watching George, trying his best, until finally he peed.  I was amazed.  He was amazed.  His sister was amazed.  We all did a dance, cheered wildly, and sang a song.

That was two weeks ago.  This morning, after a four day streak of no accidents in underpants, he woke up with a dry diaper.  He immediately asked for the toilet and his Aquaman underpants.  He took a trip to the mall with his dad, played all day, had a nap, and still no accident.  Then this evening, as he played on his new bean-bag chair with his sister, she announced, "I smell poop!"  Figuring the streak of good fortune had been broken, I ran over to what I was sure to be a total disaster, to find exactly the opposite.  My son had taken off his pants and used the training toilet (yes it is just sitting in the play room) all on his own!

The mirage is shimmering less and taking on true form.  Now I can almost reach out and touch it:  a diaper-free home.

Toilet Time

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Another Mother's Dilemma

Bet I could run an entire series of Mother's Dilemmas posts.

My most recent dilemma came about yesterday as I went shopping for underpants for my son who is toilet training. This most likely shouldn't be a difficult task, however my son is quite young to be training (21 months) and he is on the small side (22 lbs). The smallest underpants I could find were 2/3T with the weight range starting at 27 lbs. I started thinking about how I didn't remember having this problem when I trained my daughter at 20 months, so I checked the girls underpants to discover the 2/3T weight range starts at 20 lbs.

The dilemma:

Do I buy my son underpants that fit, but are pink, or do I buy underpants for boys that are too big? How is one supposed to make such difficult decisions??

After much going back and forth, much more than probably should be admitted, I decided to go with the boy pack. He is already on the small side, so the last thing his pride needs is to be caught in girls underpants. And, he will eventually grow into them, right?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

A Mother's Dilemma

A few weeks ago, as I came down the stairs I noticed the the wood below the banister was in much need of a good dusting. So, I made a mental note, and like many mothers of small children, I immediately forgot. Last week on my house cleaning day it dawned on me

Hey, go dust upstairs.

So, I grabbed my dust cloth, ran up stairs fully prepared to eliminate the dust and rid my family of embarrassment, when I discovered my daughter had begun writing her name with her finger in the dust. Quite clearly it reads, "CATH". Now, as summer comes to an end and we prepare for a trip and two weeks of house guests, I am faced with the dilemma: leave the embarrassing dust, or destroy my daughter's endearing mark.

Oh, who am I kidding. This is the age of digital images. Time to take a picture, and clean the dust!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Saturday mornings are awsome. Catherine has been taking dance class for almost a year now. We have a routine of heading out early to grab bagels before class. This quarter we are we are "practicing for school" which means I drop her off for class after bagels then I leave to go for a run. She has been a bit nervous about my leaving the building, and has found comfort in learning our phone number, getting a flower after each class, and most importantly wearing her tiarra.
While intently watching an episode of Alias, Chase exclaimed, "Uh oh!" immediately following an explosion.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Dinosaurs, Termites, and Exotic Cuisine

One of our favorite places to visit is the Durham Museum of Life and Science.  Catherine is completely obsessed with the butterfly house, and Chase just loves running around the sound exhibit.  On the weekends we go as a family, and since we have a membership, we frequently go during the week whenever we need to break the boredom, even if it just for an hour.  This past week we have been twice, once with our friends Kristen and Patrick, who managed to snap this terrific picture of us about to be eaten by an Albertosaurus on the dinosaur trail.

The second trip was to check out the Butterfly Bash.  We stopped by after dance class, having no idea what the Butterfly Bash actually was, to be completely surprised by all the fun.  Upon entrance, members had a choice of gift between a cute bottle of bubbles with a butterfly on top and a lollipop with a mealworm inside.  After inquiring about the lollipop, and if the worm was real (alive in Catherine speak) and edible, she decided to go with...

drum roll please...

the lollipop!

Yes, she did eat it.

Chase chose a bottle of pink bubbles.  Go figure.

Once inside, we discovered at least a dozen booths set up outside the butterfly house with topics ranging from entomology to face painting.  The first booth we hit, was face painting.

We then sat outside and listened to some live music for a bit.  Well, I sat, the kids danced.

Chase attacked a few times. Fun.

There was booth where people could hold exotic bugs like giant millipedes, tarantulas, and stick bugs.  If you know our kids, then yea, you know we held them all.

Then we hit up the termite booth which I found amazing.  Apparently there is a chemical in many ball point ink pens that is similar enough to the one used by termites to communicate about where to find food, so if you draw a path with one of these pens, the termites will get on it and follow it.  Blew my mind.  Totally amazed I was, so when I asked the entomologist which chemical was responsible, I was taken back when she gave me a look, sighed, and pulled out a piece of paper to which she pointed to a chemical structure, and said, "If you really want to know it is this."

It was the structure for 2-phenoxyethanol.

Perhaps this adorable, young entomologist just couldn't imagine that the woman to whom she was speaking, with the crazy child on her shoulders pointing and grunting loudly at termites walking on the loop-dee-loops his sister just drew, while rubbing her hair into something resembling a rats nest, would actually understand the word 2-phenoxyethanol because in a previous life she used to be an organic chemist.

Honestly, I was.

I have the tax documents to prove it.

Anyway, after some lunch the kids decided the perfect way to end the meal was with, well pardon the pun, some mealworm dessert.  And I'm not talking about the lollipop.  Well just see for yourself, or if you have a weak stomach, please don't look in the cup.

Fortunately they were stir fried in an electric walk in some sesame oil, however she refused all offers of toppings.  Both she and Chase ate them saying, "Mmmm,"
and then to much of my horror,
"Try one, Mommy.  They taste just like fries!"

Honestly I would say they were more like oily styrofoam than fries.

Then there were the crickets, oh the crickets.  They at least accepted the drizzled chocolate topping.  Here she is moments after chowing down her second helping of crickets.

If you look real closely you might just see a leg sticking out between her teeth.  Oh dear, sorry for the imagery.  After dessert we all three got stickers,

and four hours later we left happily exhausted, and full of all sorts of new experiences.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

New Skates and a New Do

As it turns out, both Catherine and I are highly motivated by sticker charts.

Nap time had turned into a battle of wills about six weeks ago, and the hours of 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. turned into an awful time in our home.  Giving up naps was not an alternative, we tried, however the irrational, demanding behavior became too much to bare. To motivate our little diva into taking her much needed nap, a sticker chart was created.  Every day she took a nap, she got a sticker.  Once she accumulated 7 stickers, she got a small prize.  It was amazing how motivating this was.  Anytime she considered fighting a nap, I would say, "This is an opportunity to earn a sticker."  Like magic, she'd go lay down.  Now, I cannot say that a nap occurred every day, but the resistance to napping was no longer an issue.  When a nap is not taken, no sticker is given.  Since then, we have seen a clear pattern relating sleep and behavior.  After two days of no actual sleep, she enters into one of her moods.  At the beginning of this week she filled an entire four week chart with stickers, so we celebrated with a bigger reward:  roller skates.

She has been asking us for skates since winter.  Finally with nice weather, and good behavior it seemed to be the right time.  She is doing pretty well with them, too.  Better than I expected.

Just ignore the screaming child in the background, he was trying to bully me out of my phone.  His narcissistic  obsession with watching videos of himself, cause this reaction every time he sees the phone. 

While shopping for the skates, we saw that there was a salon that cut kids hair for a good price, so Chase got his second, and much needed hair cut. 

He looks so much like his dad I wonder if I was anything more than an incubator. 

Oh and please excuse the dirty shirt, we had been playing outside all day.

And for those of you paying attention to the beginning of this post may be wondering how exactly is it that I, too, am motivated by sticker charts.  Well, I made one for myself to remind me to exercise every day, and placed it on the pantry door.  The motivation from seeing no sticker in the box for the day has done wonders for my exercise goals. 

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Tummy talking

Catherine woke us up this morning to say, "Tummy talking! And the talk is, 'rumble rumble'."

Later this morning, she saw that the home screen of the PS3 had changed to green, and said, "Maybe it's camouflaged."