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I Love…

3 yrs 6 months, Nessness

  • The quirky things she says that reveal her personality a little more, like “this is my hand, you don’t move it for me”
  • When she expresses appreciation without being prompted, like “Mommy, thank you for making scrambled eggs today”
  • Her laugh when we have a tickle fight
  • Her love for places like Costco and Ikea
  • The way her eyes and face light up when she’s excited about something. I hope she will always find things in life to be excited over.
  • When she entertains Obi-Wan and they are laughing together. I hope they will always be good friends to each other.
  • When she says, “Mommy give me a hug!”
  • How she offers to kiss my or daddy’s owies better and pray for us
  • Her eagerness to have a turn at saying Grace at mealtimes
  • Watching her run and scream to the door when Baba comes home from work
  • Looking at “Where’s Waldo” books together. She notices interesting things as she searches for the different people or objects.
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I Love…

15 months, Obiwan
image

  • that he still smells sweet (I hear little boys get stinky eventually)
  • when he rests his head on my shoulders
  • the way he reaches for my hand or arm in order to hug it, or grabs my shirt to pull his face into it
  • his developing sense of compassion. He’ll cry if his sister cries and will go try to hug her.
  • that he’s so chill
  • how he gets hangry and yells for more food, faster during meal times
  • his determination. If he’s set his eyes on something, I can’t distract him from it easily
  • the way he walks like a little drunk man, teetering, stumbling and recovering
  • his big smiles with all eight teeth showing
  • his hearty laughs
  • how he giggles when he farts and says “booot” (boy thing?)
  • how his early vocabulary is so different from his sister’s. First words are “boh boh” (ball), mama, baba, booot (when he farts)
  • the way he pats his own chest when he coughs or chokes on something
  • how he points to himself when we ask “who is Ji Man?” (his Chinese name)….and how he also points to himself when we ask “who is mama?”…and how he points to his mouth when we ask where is nose is. We’re working on it.
  • how he run/waddles and lauches into my arms
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Earliest Memories

39 months, Nessness

I wonder what, if anything, Nessness will remember from this period of her life. One of my earliest memories was of trying to find my toy and I was looking in a closet. I can still recall the frustrating feeling in my brain of not being able to recall where I put that toy and how I kept looking and looking. I don’t remember what toy it was though. Another one was of being on my parent’s bed in the evening. I remember the glow of a light above me as I sprawled on my belly. I was probably around three or four.

Nessness mixes up her time periods. She’ll refer to “this morning before nap” as “yesterday”. She’ll also refer to various events in the past as “today” or “yesterday”. But she remembers the event. She recognizes the boardwalk in Steveston that she and her cousin played along when they visited in April. She remembers random places that she’s hidden away a hair elastic when I ask her to grab one. She remembers what she’s tucked away in her plastic Easter eggs and lined up in order on her shelf. She remembers her nanny from a year ago as well as what they played together that one time. She totally remembers if I said I’d take her to the park and failed to do so.

One time I dismantled the gingerbread house she and Daddy built this past Christmas, and put all the pieces in a ziploc bag on the counter. She saw it, went up to the counter, pointed and said, “Who took apart my gingerbread man house?” I replied, “I did.” She furrowed her brows, “I’m not happy. I build this with baba.” I apologized. And then EVERY DAY for a MONTH she’d point to the ziplocked gingerbread house and say, “Who took apart my gingerbread man house? Mommy. I’m not happy about this. I build with baba.” Even after I threw away the stale leftovers, she’d point to that spot on the counter where I last had it. I bet this Christmas she’ll remind me of the time I threw away her gingerbread man house.

I hope she forgets my mommy fails though. The times when I should’ve been more understanding instead of being frustrated with her toddlerness. I’m counting on childhood amnesia to take care of that. I hope to create more times when she’s laughing instead of when she’s upset so she can, if she does, think back and remember there was happiness.

What’s your earliest memory?

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Words on repeat

39 months, Nessness

“Turn on the music!”
“Didi (little brother) is awake, make music louder!”
“Give me a fork!” (or whatever utensil I didn’t already give her)
“I want see!”
“No”
“I don’t want to”
“I do it”
“It’s okay”
“Stop talking. I not listening”
“Don’t do that”

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Day in a Life with Two

When Obiwan was 3 mo

0700 – nurse Obiwan, put him down for nap
0800 – wake and get Nessness washed up and changed
0900 – feed Nessness breakfast
1000 – nurse Obiwan, put him down for nap
1100 – do breakfast dishes, prep lunch
1200 – feed Nessness lunch
1300 – nurse Obiwan, put him down for nap
1400 – put Nessness down for nap, wash lunch dishes
1500 – sweep, laundry, shower…or try to nap
1600 – nurse Obiwan, prep snack for Nessness when she wakes
1700 – read/play with Nessness briefly, prep dinner
1800 – prep dinner and feed Nessness dinner
1900 – nurse Obiwan while trying to eat my own dinner
2000 – bathe kids, get Nessness ready for bed, tuck her in
2100 – pack leftovers, do dinner dishes, remember to put clothes in dryer
2200 – play with Obiwan
2300 – nurse Obiwan, try to put him to bed
2400 – sleep
0200 or 0500 – nurse Obiwan, sleep after

Now when Obiwan is 8 mo

0800 – get the already awake Nessness changed and washed up, nurse Obiwan after
0900 – make and feed Nessness and Obiwan breakfast, do breakfast dishes
1000 – get out of the house (Strong Start program, library, grocery run, mall, etc)
1130 – prep lunch
1200 – feed Nessness and Obiwan lunch
1300 – nurse Obiwan
1400 – put Nessness and Obiwan down for nap, wash lunch dishes
1500 – sweep, laundry, shower…or try to nap
1600 – nurse Obiwan and put him on the jolly jumper
1630 – prep snack for Nessness when she wakes
1700 – read/play with Nessness briefly, prep dinner
1800 – prep dinner and feed Nessness and Obiwan dinner
1900 – still eating dinner
2000 – bathe kids, get Nessness ready for bed, tuck her in
– meanwhile Daddy is bottle feeding Obiwan and getting him to bed
2100 – pack leftovers, do dinner dishes, remember to put clothes in dryer
2200 – Netflix, icecream, wine (if it’s been a rough evening)
2300 – Netflix or other time wasters
2400 – pump milk for tomorrow
0100 – sleep and kick myself for staying up so late

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From the Mouth of Babes

32 months old, Nessness

Toddlers are so literal…it’s awesome:

N: GungGung PohPoh live in Calgary. YehYeh MahMah lives in Edmonton.
Me: Where do you live Nessness?
N: At home.

N: (pointing at CD) We can put it into the ABCD player and listen to music.
Me: You mean the CD player.
N: The ABCD player!
(This was a few months ago…she’s got it down now.)

N: There is hair on your floor Mommy. It’s dirty. You need to clean.
Me: (IknowIknowIknow)

N: Where is Baba?
Me: He’s at work?
N: What does he do?
Me: He’s a physiotherapist. He helps people feel better.
N: Baba helps people feel better by putting on a bandage and giving them hugs.
Me: um…kinda.

My Aunt: Your noodles look yummy, how about you share some with your brother?
N: We can’t! He has no teeth!! (This sounds way cuter in Cantonese)

Me: Do you like the bike GungGung (maternal grandfather) gave you?
N: Yes!
Me: Ok let’s try riding it later.
N: No! It’s nap time and I have to go nap!
Me: Right. That’s why I said “later”
N: No! It’s nap time!
Me: Ok…it’s nap time.

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Learn it. Do it right. Do it faster.

I’m an INTJ. Competency and efficiency are KPI’s for everything in my life. Did I do it the best way possible given the circumstances and resources available? And can I do it better and/or faster next time?

I’ve brought those concepts into teaching Nessness (2.75 yrs old) life skills…like how to feed herself (with spoon, fork or chopsticks). How to clean up her dropped/spilled food. How to clean up her toys and books. How to put on her boots/runners and take them off. How to floss and brush her teeth. How to go potty by herself (the wiping is sketch but she can do it.) How to sort clean cutlery from the dishwasher. She’s mostly at the “do it right and faster” stage.

The next learning items we’re working in the “learn it, do it right” stages on are dressing/undressing herself, dustbusting around the house, wiping her table, putting dirty clothes in hamper and making her bed.

Sometimes, okay most times, it’d be a lot faster if I just did it, but that robs her the opportunity to get hands on learning and to build confidence when she does it. That said, I need to work on not getting frustrated with her when she decides to get silly and totally not do it properly. I tell myself she’s not even three. But I’ve seen when she does it really well so I know she’s capable. And so I push.