Tuesday, July 31, 2007

whatever you say, bud

Levi did this drawing at school last week. When I remarked on how beautiful the colors were, he said, "It's a man with two beards and a lot of sunglasses."

I love how kids can draw these totally random scribbles and squiggles and shapes and when you say, "What is it?" they've always got some very specific and hilarious answer for you. But, not to be totally lacking in humor or taking this whole parenting thing too seriously or anything, the question has kind of bothered me. I wonder whether by asking it, over time, we are helping to limit kids' creativity. I mean, why are we always expecting what they draw to be something? Why can't it just be random scribbles and squiggles and shapes? Why can't it just be about the process? Have they really drawn what they tell us they've drawn (the rocket ship, the family at a picnic, the shark eating a fish, etc.), or are they just supplying an answer because they sense we want one and the picture isn't complete until it can be described representationally? (And can you tell I was an art history major?)

So I have stopped asking my kids, "What is it?" when they show me their artwork and instead tried to comment on the more abstract qualities, like the bright colors, or the busyness and energy, and also to talk about how much they must have enjoyed working on it.

Further proof that I am a totally awesome mom and my kids will have absolutely no problems or difficulties or issues. None.

Friday, July 27, 2007

a few of the many thoughts that are keeping me awake right now

1. Why did Stupid Daddy not come downstairs to the playroom where I was watching Me and You and Everyone We Know to say good night?
2. Me and You and Everyone We Know.
3. That home renovation tax credit I forgot to look into.
4. The settings on my relatively new digital camera.
5. What am I going to make for dinner tomorrow night for that dude from work that Stupid Daddy invited?
6. Is this hypothyroid medication going to make Ezra grow, or is he going to need growth hormone shots?
7. I have to learn how to make my blog look prettier and fancier.
8. How am I going to learn how to make my blog look prettier and fancier?
9. How am I going to get Ezra to school by 8 once kindergarten starts when the other two don't have to be anywhere at any particular time and everyone often sleeps well past 7 and if there's one thing I absolutely can't stand to do, it's wake up my kids?
10. I better get to sleep soon if I'm going to survive tomorrow.
11. Is Moxie going to have explosive diarrhea during the night again?
12. etc. etc.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I cut my dog's hair today

Originally uploaded by stupidmommy
Here's Harriet with her "before" hair. Fluffy, wavy, luxurious, and totally matted from neglect on our part and don't-come-near-me-with-that -torture-device -brush insanity on hers.

Here's what I removed.

It started innocently enough. I was just going to get rid of the worst offenders--the dreadlocks around her neck and her mustn't-touch. But as I snipped, I realized there was no way to salvage the rest of her coat, which appeared to have years-old dead hair in it and underneath, the most horrible case of dandruff I've ever encountered. (And I've encountered some rough-looking heads in my day.) So I decided to give her a crew cut and start from scratch. Over time, and with multiple groomings (which I convinced myself she would tolerate since there would be so much less hair), I would be able to restore her coat to its former puppyish glory and also release the flakes from her skin. Did I mention that I'm a picker?

Here she is after her appointment, half her original size. I've already begun tackling the grooming, combing through tiny sections of fur, loosening dead hair and skin. Actually, um, I can't seem to stop myself. Now when Harriet sees me, she runs.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

dear moms of young kids around town,

If you catch me staring as your kid pitches a fit in the checkout line or at the playground, please don't think I'm feeling annoyed or being critical. I'm watching you to see how you'll respond; I'm looking for ideas, and also reference points. I want to see if you get angry, if you squeeze your child's arm with more force than necessary, if you take a deep breath and calmly lay down the law, if you grab the kid and bolt, if you ignore him. I want to know how you get to the other side of the breakdown. Because for me, one of the biggest parenting challenges is thinking quickly in those chaotic, loud, and uncomfortable moments, getting a handle on how to proceed instead of falling apart too, getting my guys, bottom line, to obey. And Christ, I have a hard enough time of it in the privacy of my own home.

These kids, they're like this tropical weather system, with energy building and forces colliding with zero predictability, though there are certainly warning signs some of the time. Even in the calm moments, I find myself wondering how long I have until the next big storm blows through. If I'm not yelling into gale force winds and trying to keep the roof on, I'm hunkering down.

There; I think I've exhausted that metaphor sufficiently, don't you? Shall we move on?

Mostly, I'm just really impressed that you've ventured out in public in the first place. I save all my errands for the day care days. And when I've got the kids, we tend to hang around at home. I bring them places only reluctantly; it's just too freaking stressful.

Stupid Daddy, in contrast, not only piles them into the car without a moment's hesitation, he runs errands with them in tow at Lowe's, or Target, or Radio Shack--places where tempting and breakable things abound. He takes them to the playground with an armada of ride-around toys, virtually guaranteeing that simultaneous meltdowns requiring immediate attention will occur on opposite sides of the park.

I don't know how he does it. I strongly suspect candy is involved.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

so I ask you, in the end, who came out on top?

Again with the pressure to post every day. Though actually, I see that it is now 12:02am, which first of all makes me an idiot for not having gone to bed already but also means that it is, technically speaking, tomorrow, and I've failed with the post-a-day thing.

I knew somebody in college who had a name for the party pooper who is always pointing out that "tomorrow" has arrived, right in the middle of a night out when you feel you could go on forever: "tomorrow dick." Like, after many drinks at a rockin' off-campus party, you would say to some friends, "Tomorrow let's go have pancakes for breakfast if we're not too hung over to eat." And one of them would gleefully say, "But it is tomorrow!" And you would say, "Don't be a tomorrow dick!"

Please note that whatever the suggestion of the above to the contrary, I didn't actually have a life in college. I heard talk of these things called off-campus parties but rarely attended any. I definitely didn't do enough drinking or use enough recreational drugs. Most weekend nights I was alone and sound asleep well before the tomorrow dicks had a chance to strike. But I did graduate summa cum laude. So na-na-na-na-na-na.

Monday, July 23, 2007

are alien forces controlling my child's brain? if so, was he betraying them?

This is what Ezra said to me yesterday, after pulling my face down to his level and looking very sincerely into my eyes.

"Mommy, I love you." He paused and pulled me closer, and lowered his voice. "I love you more than the fourth universe."

Sunday, July 22, 2007

they're probably pretty good drivers

During the renovation of our home, there was so much foundation work that had to be done that our back yard was transformed into a giant dirt pile. Recently we hired some landscapers to grade it and put down sod. It's just a small narrow strip, but we're delighted that it's there at all, and when the boys come inside it's not an absolute given anymore that they'll be covered in a layer of dirt, though it certainly still happens often enough.

Now that our yard is functional, Stupid Daddy decided it would be fun to hang a swing from one of the trees, because he's handy like that, and also, unlike me, he has a sense of play. So this morning we all went to Home Despot to purchase supplies. The boys and Lilah entertained themselves by taking things off the shelves and crawling behind stacks of boxes to get to the inner recesses of the on-the-floor stock (from which they did indeed emerge covered in a layer of dirt).

At one point, as Stupid Daddy was deciding which rope to get to ensure that nobody would die from swing-related injuries, Levi pulled a particularly heavy-duty length of twine from one of the bins.

"Let's get this," he said. "I want this rope."

"Nah," I said. "We're not going to get that. That's for a gorilla swing."

"A gorilla swing?" he said. Then he started laughing. "How could a gorilla drive all the way here?" And he laughed some more at the thought of it. Because you see gorillas on swings in people's yards all the time. But a gorilla behind the wheel of a car on its way to the store: now that's comedy.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

what ever happened to the simple questions like, "Where do babies come from?"

We're in the car on the way home from swimming and dinner at Grandma's this evening.

Ezra: When did this whole world get built? And b, who built it?

Stupid Daddy: Mommy, I think he's talking to you.

Me: No, I think it's your turn to field one of these.

Stupid Daddy [clearing his throat]: Four billion years ago.

Ezra: And who built it?

Stupid Daddy: God. God built the world.

Me [looking at Stupid Daddy like, When the hell did you get all religious and shit on me?]: ......

Ezra: Is God still alive?

Stupid Daddy: Yup.

Ezra: Where does he live?

Me: Who says it's a he?

Stupid Daddy [looking at me like, When did you get all feminist and shit on me?]: In heaven. SHE or he lives in heaven.

Me [looking at Stupid Daddy like, Don't you know that heaven doesn't exist and even if it did, we wouldn't believe in it because we're Jewish?]: .....

Ezra: Daddy, you're not making sense. First you tell me that God is still alive, but when I ask you where he lives you tell me heaven. Daddy? Heaven is where dead people go.

Me: Yeah, Daddy. That doesn't make any sense.

Stupid Daddy [whispering]: Well then you answer the goddamn questions!

[silence for a minute]

Ezra: Where do seeds come from?

Stupid Daddy: From plants. They make their own seeds.

Me [not sure this is the case but wanting to see what will happen]: No, I think he means where did the first seeds come from.

Stupid Daddy [glaring at me]: .....

Friday, July 20, 2007

what would the stuffed animals think?

It's about 10pm, and Stupid Daddy and I are in bed, moving towards some action. Intimacy. Getting after it. Good lovin'. Christ, must I spell it out for you?!

Lilah, who has been crying intermittently since being placed in her crib a little over an hour ago, boots up again.

After some hemming and hawing and negotiating, we decide to bring her into our bed, knowing it's the only thing that's going to quiet her for good.

Me: Now what?
Stupid Daddy: Do you want to go have sex in her crib?

Thursday, July 19, 2007

learn from my mistakes

Right after you've moved into your top-to-bottom-renovated home with "oatmeal" berber carpeting in the bedrooms, do not administer children's ibuprofen in any one of said bedrooms.

Or if you do, be very sure that you've actually screwed the cap back on instead of just resting it ever so gently on top of the bottle, so that when your toddler tries to pour out the contents while you're busy encouraging your five-year-old to blow his nose with gusto, not like a pansy-ass loser, godammit, so that some snot actually comes out into the tissue, she won't be able to, thanks to child-proof-cap technology, and your carpet will remain gloriously pristine, and your husband won't be mad at you, even though he was the one who brought the ibuprofen into the boys' bedroom in the first place and handed it to you, and when you give ibuprofen, you always bring the child to it instead of it to the child, except that tonight it was right there in your hand and you decided to live a little on the edge, and now there's a faint orange stain right in the middle of the room.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

but he was the only one who got a birth announcement

Right now, Lilah is passed out on my bed, on her back, wearing delicate pink striped footie pajamas, and over that, her brothers' Cars boxers. Because she insisted. Because she idolizes her brothers and must do what they do at all times. Because she looked so freakin' cute there was no reason to deny her.

Ezra, the policeman of Fair, took note the moment I yanked the boxers up over her bum. He is now asleep in his bed, wearing one pair of underwear under his pajamas and another pair over his pajamas. Because he insisted. As if Lilah would be getting away with something if he hadn't. As if being allowed to go to bed wearing underwear as overwear is somehow evidence of preferential treatment.

Little does he know. Let's just keep it a secret that after I tucked the boys in, I brought Lilah downstairs and let her hang out with me while I straightened up, because I could just tell that trying to put her to bed right then would be pointless. She snacked on peanuts and drank milk. She giggled a lot. When I was done cleaning and she seemed tired enough, I tried to put her in her crib. But she screamed bloody murder, for a long, long time, and so I brought her into bed with me. And I'm not about to move her.

That, Ezra, is what preferential treatment is all about.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

a post devoted exclusively to Levi, the middle child I never write about

The excitement of being four continues apace. Levi woke me up this morning with this urgent question, whispered right into my face: "Mommy, am I still four?"

"Yup," I muttered. You're still four, the sun is still not up, I'm still really tired.

"Yay!" he said, much relieved.

And then of course he had to tell everyone at school that he had turned four--friends, teachers, parents dropping off their kids. Each time, he held up his hand with his thumb tucked neatly against his palm, like whoever it was he was talking to might need a visual aid in order to comprehend the news.

Being four has also been the explanation for many events in the last 24 hours, except that Levi confuses "why" with "because." When we were getting ready for school, for example, he told me, "I got my shoes on by myself. That's why I'm four," hand held in front of him, four fingers upright, even for me. When I remarked on the beauty of a particularly intricate drawing he had done today, he said, "I worked hard on it. That's why I'm four."

At 39, I can only vaguely remember the thrill of having a birthday. So mostly I've just been marveling at Levi's enthusiasm, and thinking to myself, "I love that kid. That's why he's so adorable."

Monday, July 16, 2007

random bits

I'm too tired to post more than this, or even attempt to string it coherently together:

Ezra and Lilah woke up with runny noses, Levi with a cough, and I with a sore throat. Stupid Daddy is so far still healthy, if you don't count the possibly rotting tooth that's sending bolts of pain up as high as his cheekbone and down as low as his neck.

Today Levi turned four. "I'm four!" he told everyone he came across. I can't quite capture this kid's zest for life, but I keep coming back to this image of him from a couple of weeks ago. He was sitting at the bar, chugging a glass of milk, and when he had drained his cup, he slammed it down on the counter, wiped his milk mustache with the back of his hand, and said, in this deep, guttural voice, "I love milk so much," like it was killing him, the love was so intense, and this was his last utterance, his last breath before he died from milk-love.

Happy Birthday, you wonderful creature, you.

Also, this: Ezra and Levi were playing with a couple of bath toy sharks, and Ezra said, "Okay, Levi, now they're brothers and they're house wrestling." Then he turned to me.

"House wrestling?" he said it without certainty. "Mommy, what do you call it when we wrestle a lot?"

Roughhousing. He meant roughhousing. But I think house wrestling is at least as good.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

still more questions

"Can I sit in your lap and poop on you?"

"Why does counting go on forever?"

"What's after outer space?"

"When are you going to be a boy?"

Saturday, July 14, 2007

babe magnets

This morning, Ezra and Levi had a friend from school over. She’s in Levi’s class, but because she’s a girl, she’s more mature than the both of them. Put together. Like, if you added Levi’s maturity to Ezra’s, she’d still come out on top.

But for some reason Adina seems to enjoy their company. Part of it may be that she likes keeping them in line. I heard her chide them more than once for their poor manners. “Ezra,” she said when they were having a snack and he was sliding down lower and lower on his bar stool. “Sit up straight.” (“Okay,” he said happily.) Part of it may be something like the opposite: she can let her hair down when she’s around them, and let her inner wild child come out to play.

It’s much easier to see why the boys like her. She’s adorable and smiley. She has big brown eyes and bouncy curls. And she’s an excellent storyteller. “One time,” she told me, “when I was a baby and my mommy was cooking I threw a ball? And it bounced on her head and then the counter and then the floor! And then her hip!” Oh, how we laughed.

I can tell my boys like Adina because in her presence, they act stupider than usual. Throwing colored pencils across the playroom, calling each other “butthead,” poking holes in their sandwiches and then wearing them as rings: They understand intuitively that this kind of behavior impresses girls.

But there were moments, too, when all three of them magically connected, in their own bizarre world of imaginative play. At one point they came downstairs and Ezra was leading Levi by one end of my pearl necklace, the other end of which was wrapped around Levi’s neck. “This is our bear,” Ezra explained. “His name is Lissus. Adina is my sister and I married her, and now the bear is ours.”

“So you married your sister, huh?” I said.

Adina obviously wanted to change the subject. “He’s a very talented bear,” she said. “He can stand up on two feet like a real human!”

“Humans don’t stand on two feet, silly,” said Levi.

“We’re human,” Adina pointed out, “and that’s what we do.”

“Oh, yeah,” said Levi, giggling.

And then Adina and her brother-husband and their bear wandered off.

Friday, July 13, 2007

sensitive 90s guy

We are lying in bed, ready to turn off the lights and go to sleep.

Stupid Daddy: [a woman he works with] has one of those barbell piercings on her tongue, and I keep wanting to ask her if it helps when she gives head. But I don't know if that would constitute sexual harassment.

Me: Probably not, as long as there were other people in the room.

Stupid Daddy: Right. So she wouldn't feel uncomfortable.

[much laughter]

Thursday, July 12, 2007

some news items

Discovery of the Day: You walk into the bathroom completely naked to get into the bath tub with your younger brother and sister. You've got a huge grin and a wee boner. "Mommy," you announce with obvious delight. "I can change my penis!"

Frustration of the Day: When you're not yet two, it's hard to accept that the little brass hinge you found on the front porch is not actually a chair for you to sit in, though you're right that it does have some chair-like qualities, and though you set it down just so on the walkway and try to wiggle your butt into it.

Error of the Day: When you're about to turn four, vocabulary can sometimes be confusing. So when your older brother asks one day what a girl's penis is called and then a couple of days later you say, just as your mom is changing into her bathing suit, "Mommy, I want to see your Chinese," you're mistaken.

Faux Pas of the Day: After you've been corrected vis-a-vis the vocab, you shout, "Vagina!" several times at the dinner table in front of Grandma and Grandma's nice friend.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

just wondering

Do you ever pick up your three kids from school at 5:30 and have at least one of them screaming at you, but more often two of them, and intermittently all three, for the next 2 hours and 15 minutes but who's counting until they're tucked into bed?

Does your eldest child ever pick at his dinner and then ask for yogurt only to have two bites and then ask for cheese, only to have two bites and then smear the rest all over your cabinets?

Does your middle child ever torment your youngest, slamming into her and knocking her down in the tub, squeezing her around the neck, poking at her dolly, apparently oblivious to her shrieks?

Does your youngest, out of the blue, just when her two older brothers are at their demonic worst, start acting her age, pitching fits about every little thing, heaving herself backwards onto the hardwood floor, which of course only initiates another round of screaming? Does she ever insist on doing herself all the things she can't actually do herself and then demand help and then, when you give her the help she's asking for, turn away from the enterprise in complete irritation and disgust?

Yeah, that never happens to us either.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

more questions

"What would it feel like if you pooped on my tongue and I asked you not to but you kept doing it?"

(I'm not sure, but different from how it would feel if I pooped on his tongue and he didn't ask me to stop, which would also be different from how it would feel if I pooped on his tongue and he asked me to stop and I did.)

"What's a girl's penis called again?"

"Can I put my foot in your vagina?"

"How long have you had that colander?"

Sunday, July 8, 2007

waiting for the Zoloft to kick in

Used to be I only got anxious the evening before my "on" days with the kids; the evening before a day care day, I would feel an incredible sense of relief after I had packed and labeled that last snack--apart from getting them to school the next morning, I had a whole entire day of not being a parent to look forward to.

But now those evenings are consumed by dread as well. I'm just as fearful of the freedom as I am of being shackled to three needy, high-energy creatures. I'm afraid to work on an article I'm supposed to be working on, afraid to work on a children's book I have an idea for, afraid to do housework, pay bills, get exercise, buy groceries, take pictures.

I look at my husband going about his business and I am amazed. He gets up and he faces the day. Everything is manageable, even the challenges. Right now he is snoring beside me, satisfied by what he accomplished, not bothered by what he didn't get to, not worried about what tomorrow has in store.

Oh, wait, he just woke up.

"Did I fall asleep?" he said.

I said, "Well, you were snoring. Does that count?"

Then he said, "What are you writing about?"

"My constant state of dread," I said.

He said, "Maybe you could lock it out of your life with a dreadlock."

Which is not funny at all. But I'm kind of glad about that because if there's one thing I hate, it's when he ruins my bad moods by saying something hilarious.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

little man, redux

In the car this evening, Ezra and Levi were chatting about school.

Me (whispering to Alex): They're so cute.
Ezra: I heard that comment.

Alex and I started laughing.

Ezra (scowling and pointing at me): That's enough out of you!

The kid is five years old!

(And even though I never talk about Levi because he's the middle child and I don't pay any attention to him, I do have to say, just for the record, that he's completely adorable, but his adorableness is physical and kinetic and auditory (auditory adorableness? it sounds like a medical condition) and therefore lends itself more to video than text. So maybe he'll be my YouTube kid.)

Thursday, July 5, 2007

little man

Yesterday Ezra came up to me in the hallway looking glum.

"What's wrong, bud?" I asked him. (I say "bud" every so often so he'll think I'm cool and want to be my friend.)

"I'm sad about my life," he said.

"Holy shit," I said--but not out loud. "If this is Ezra at five, what the hell are we in for?"

"You said you would do something and you didn't do it," he went on. "And so my life is stupid."

I fucked up and now his life is in the shitter? That is wrong in so many ways. First of all, I never fuck up. Anything. Ever. And then there is the small matter of how he internalized my faults and assumed the burden of my mistake and also wildly overreacted. But because I'm a really self-involved parent, I just wanted to know what I had promised and not delivered on.

"You told me you'd switch the clothing around in our dresser and you didn't do it." It was true. When Ezra expressed interest in picking out his own clothes the other day, I offered to rearrange the shelves so that his summer clothing was easily accessible. And then I had forgotten about it.

"I'm sorry, Ezra," I told him. "You're right."

"But Mommy," he said. "When you say you're going to do something and then you don't do it, it makes me not trust you anymore."

"Holy shit," I said--but not out loud. "If this is Ezra at five, what the hell are we in for?" Some things just bear repeating.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

questions I got asked today

"What does heaven look like?"

"How big is water?"

"How far away is the middle of the Earth?"

"How far away is Mexico?"

"Why is air everywhere?"

"Why do grown-ups always go into the bathroom to change into their bathing suits?"

"What would it feel like if you had a piece of wood stuck to your skin for ninety years?"

"How long is ninety years?"

"Can we stay up until midnight since it's the Fourth of July?"

"Why do grown-ups get to decide everything?"

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

do preschoolers get that it's the thought that counts?

For as long as we've owned our boys, it's been a battle to keep them out of our bed at night. For whatever reason, there are good stretches and then there are bad stretches, and we seem to have very little control over them. But that doesn't stop us from trying.

So last night, after a weeks-long bad stretch, Stupid Daddy told the boys that if they stayed in their beds the whole night, I would take them to the movies today.

Lo and behold, it worked. Sort of. They did indeed stay in their beds all night, but Levi came bounding in a 6am, about an hour and a half earlier than his usual wake-up time, and asked, "Can we go to the movie now?" He didn't stop asking until we got to the movie theater at 3:00.

We went to see Ratatouille with their 15-year-old cousin Kirby while my sister-in-law took care of Lilah. But about half an hour into it, Levi began whining very loudly that he wanted to leave. I tried shushing him and plying him with popcorn and Twizzlers because while I wasn't exactly wowed by what I had seen so far, I at least wanted to get my six bucks' worth. But I realized that the woman sitting directly in front of us was about to turn around and wallop us, so I agreed to leave. Ezra had appeared to be watching the movie contentedly while shoveling popcorn into his mouth, but when I told him we were leaving, he leapt out of his seat to join us.

So while Kirby watched the rest of the movie, we hung out in the lobby. The boys played a race car video game for a bit, totally unaware that you had to put money in to make something really happen. Then they experimented with different ways to climb up on and jump off of the seats.

Then the three of us ripped through a pack of bubble gum I happened to have in my bag, which was lucky, because I chew gum about once every six months. I blew bubbles and the boys took turns popping them. Ezra practiced blowing bubbles. Levi practiced actually keeping his gum in his mouth. (He swallowed his first piece and dropped the second into our bag of popcorn but managed to hang onto the third.)

All in all, it wasn't the worst way to spend an hour. But it certainly wasn't the slam-dunk positive reinforcement we were hoping for. I wonder whether the boys will decide they'd much rather be crawling all over us, kicking us, and bunching up our covers during the night if, when they do what they've been asked, this is the thanks they get.

Monday, July 2, 2007

she's so going to need therapy

Today I was feeling crap-ass bad, and I couldn't get motivated to do any of the work or housewifey stuff I was supposed to do.

Really what would have been best for me is some self-care: a nap, perhaps, and a trip to the gym, and maybe cooking a special meal with some music playing. But because I'm too full of self-loathing to actually treat myself well, I have to do it vicariously through my kids. Which isn't the healthiest thing in the world, I'll admit, but still, there are worse ways to screw up your offspring.

So when I sat down and thought about what might make me feel better, the thing that I really wanted to do was go to the toy store to get Lilah a doll.

I never played with dolls when I was a kid, and I've always resisted the expectation that little girls should get matched up with them. I've assumed that Lilah's older brothers' toys would be fine for her. And in a pinch, she could always tuck in Babar.

Lilah does indeed love making her trucks go zoom. But I'm told that she also loves taking care of the younger babies at school--putting the bottles they've dropped back in their mouths, or rocking them if they get fussy. Lately I've seen her patting Babar and other not especially baby-like stuffed animals on the back, or pulling a blanket up over them. They no longer seem adequate. The other day I was lying on my stomach and she pulled a blanket up over me, and then spent the next twenty minutes rearranging it between gentle pats.

So this felt like the right thing to do today. I drove to the toy store and picked out a baby doll. It's soft and it's pink and it wears a hat with a little pink bow. "Baby!" Lilah said when I gave it to her. She played with it and then left it lying face down on the floor, and then found it and played with it some more.

I love watching her tend to the doll. Between her bouts of forgetfulness or distraction, she is so incredibly gentle. And when I see her touching the doll's face, or giving it a hug, it's as though she--or someone--is doing the same for me. It feels good.

Sunday, July 1, 2007


I had this plan to post something every day, but lately I haven't thought of anything worth writing about.

Some things that happened today:
1. Levi dove into the water after not being able to put his face in a week ago.
2. I had a chocolate bar.
3. ????

See what I mean?