Sunday, December 26, 2010

Followup

....and last night, two weeks and three days after we returned from America, Sroch slept through the night.

Phew.

Llama has been sleeping well for a while now, including some 13 hour nights. So THAT's where all the sleep in this house has been going!

Now have a random picture from my eldest's Chanuka party in school. And as for pictures on our trip...

..um...
..um...

grandparents and uncle, could you send some? I didn't take a SINGLE ONE with my camera. #MommyFail

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Making up is hard to do

Good news: with ibuprofen, Llama is perfectly fine.

Good news: when Abba is late getting home with a flat tire and Mommy has to lock herself in the bathroom, the children are capable of taking care of themselves.

Bad news: the children are capable of taking care of themselves.





Good news: this was the 'toy' makeup we had in stock from Mommy's Cache of Things to Occupy Children During International Transit, and not something I would ever want to use personally. Although, hmm, I never considered nostril-stick, to say nothing of forehead gloss. I'm such a fuddy duddy.

Llama sick day


Poor little bunny. I guess I didn't take my antibiotics fast enough.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Life moves pretty fast

If I don't stop and blog once in a while, I may miss it.

Hooded

I have been hiding.

Can you blame me?

Between planning the US trip, taking the US trip, returning, recovering and so on - is it any wonder that blogging has been backburnered? Think about it: Daily life has a stressful point, so quick, write it up for a blog so you can relive the stress AND commit it to internet immortality!

But perhaps I'm being defeatist. There's lots of great things going on. No, really!

  • Llama is talking up a storm these days. Except for when she's tired or anxious, in which case she does a lot of pre-talking pointing and kvetching. Nu nu. I've been known to do that myself, sans pacifier.
  • Llama can now count to ten, only occasionally skipping 5. And she sings her ABZs with great aplomb, if perhaps lacking some accuracy.
  • Sroch succeeded in not getting thrown out of her ballet class today. Hey, this is a big deal. This was my conversation with the teacher last week:

Teacher: "I'm about ready to kick her out of the class."
Me: "Do you think she's just too young for this?"
Teacher: "No, she's plenty mature. Usually by this point, the girls understand it's more fun to do the dancing properly than to do their own thing - and she just wants to do her own thing."

Hmm. Discipline. Not our strongest point. But the gravity of her actions was explained to her today, and Sroch rose to the challenge and did excellently. So we're holding a good thought. Imagine the challenge of such an expulsion on her Permanent Record! (And yes, I'm still worried about that 8th grade suspension still on my record.)
  • It rained two weeks ago, over three inches in my backyard alone. Yay! Of course, we still need lots, lots more.
  • When the Sinus Incursion of Bacterial Doom began two days ago, I was blessed to have antibiotics in the house - yay! Of course, 24 hours after starting them, my throat is starting to hurt. What's up with that?
  • Other good things... oh, yeah, we went to America! Target and Walgreens report stock increases of over 5%.
Seriously, our trip was quite lovely. My flights with the girls (sans Yoav) were long and long, but - thank you drugs! - were manageable. The girls slept some of the time (see drug comment), and were really quite reasonable the rest of the time. Passerby were quite nice and solicitous, offering help and comments on the utter adorableness of my children, and we made it intact and all still speaking to each other.

The return flights with Yoav were also alright, despite US Airway's rerouting us painlessly through Newark (btw - utter endorsement for US Airway's Israel line - comfortable planes, very nice peoples, etc). They were alright because of a) drugs, but more importantly, b) Yoav, who sensing my Total and Utter Proximity to Losing It, took the girls in hand and sat with them in one row, letting me chill and read my Kindle and doze - alone. I was just about not coping, so it was really a chessed on his part.

In general, the combination of Spirited Srochel (doing some 4.75 year old authority testing lately, driving me mad) and Lack of Sleep from working on the girlies' jet lag brings out the worst in my parenting skills. Twas a memorable night last week (?) when 3 AM found all three women in the house crying, screaming and stamping their feet. Sigh. Sleep = good.

Anyway, our time in Houston was wonderful, with Bubbie and Zayde and Saba and Savta who came too, as well as Uncle Micah the Wunder-Uncle and Paw and Ganger and Prices and Beans and so on of course. I wish we could have stayed longer.
  • Another good thing: work didn't fire me for pretty much hibernating in Houston, not spending the couple hours a day on work that I was sure I would. In retrospect, yeah right.
  • Another good thing: I only forgot an entire drawerfull of clothing in my parents' house. Sleep. I should really look into it.
  • Finally, the best thing - my daughters. When they are bad, they're horrid, but when they are good (read: have slept) they are so very good and delightful and yummy. I continue to thank God for them on a daily basis.

Item: when I first fell sick and was laying in collapsed state in the recliner in the girls' room, Sroch solicitously brought me my slippers (unasked!), a blanket to cover me, and then asked, "do you want a book to look at?" Later she offered to read me a book, so I picked one and she sat with me and 'read' to me the entire thing, whilst I dozed in happy contented (ill) mommyhood. Aw.

They really are the best.

And here is proof: Sroch loves to compose her own songs, although sadly they don't usually keep longer than one singing (i.e. she can't replicate them later, but she'll happily make up a new one for you). Undaunted, Llama does the same, although Llama's video features two Chanuka songs, the latter one where the dreidel falls asleep, but the former the classic, timeless song about a dreidel made of 'play':






Friday, December 10, 2010

the jet lag chronicles

testing... testing...

Testing my blogging ability from my new Kindle.

I have ample opportunity to do since this is the girlssss secon twp thirty A M play session. In a row.


Yawn.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Ledor vador

Tonight (well, it wasn't nighttime yet - but it certainly was dark) in the park Sroch was singing a song they are learning in school for her Chanuka party (she tried to teach it to me too, which was adorable - first telling me the words, then having me say them with her, then trying to get me to say them alone, then she told me to add the music - except, alas, I've never heard this song before in my life).

She sang it over and over. Something about lighting a candle in my heart (this is all in Hebrew), that the light will go on "le dor va dor."

I must have asked something about it, and so she began to explain, that it was about lighting a candle, in your heart, and then the postman delivers the mail.

The postman delivers the mail?

Of course. "Le dor va dor" - he delivers from DOOR to DOOR!

I couldn't help but laugh a tremendous, giggly, shepping nachas laugh. I then tried to explain that in English, "door" means an aperture, and in Hebrew, it's a generation.

But she maintained the song was about the postman.

.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Lamoosh's birthday pictures

Here we are making the muffins she was going to take to gan. (Sroch took this picture.)


This was before her birthday shabbos. Note the crown with 'two' antenna thingies. Well, whatever.



Getting ready for gan for our birthday party. Gorgeous hair doesn't come easy you know.

Much better.

Morah Bracha made us such a nice party (full of bemused, blank-stared almost two year olds going "huh?" - this was the first birthday party in gan, and the kiddos didn't know to be excited yet). Sroch got to come too, which was nice. (I actually let her skip school - whoa!)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The miseducation of Miss Llama

As I blogged earlier*, I have come to realize that I must make a deliberate effort to talk to and engage my Second Child, since First Child automatically gets most of the volume and direction of our daily time together. "Mommy, right airplanes don't fall out of the sky because Hashem holds them there?" gets much more of a reply than "Airpain! AIRPAIN sky!"

But I realize now how much of Sroch's "advanced-ness" in pure knowledge milestones came from her Single Child status of yore. For example, by 2, she knew her ABC's. Well, Llama can say "ABC" but does not know "DEFGHIJKLMOPQRSTUVWXYZ" (although she started saying "ABC!" or "letters!" when she sees letters on my computer screen). I think we accidentally taught Sroch a lot more, simply because she was there alone to teach. The Single Child gets the ABC books read to them much more often than the Second Child, who hears a lot more of the books likely to be interesting to both parties. And Second Child is more likely to be playing with the toys ostensibly purchased for the older First Child, rather than the 'baby toys.' Thus our playtime conversation is much less of "right, that's the BLUE block, with the letter B on it!" and much more of "right, that's the Abba little man - put him in the dollhouse in the bathroom!"

All still educational, but less focused on quantifiable fundamentals.

(And hey, it's not like Sroch knowing her ABC's for almost three years (!) has gotten her to learn to read yet or nuthin.)

I think I can accurately say the girls are on the same intellectual level, but they manifest it so, so differently. Their different temperments and preferences, their different educations, their different rate of physical growth (clothes go straight from Sroch's drawer to Llama's, basically) - and of course, their different birth orders and family positions are what make them into different people.

Hair color of course plays a major factor as well.

Anyway, it's beyond belated (well, 6 weeks or so), but here's the Llama on her second birthday, before Shabbos and then the next day at gan:

ARGH! Blogger picture uploads not working! BUT I TRIED! You will all have to wait. Sorry!


*Don't think I didn't notice that despite writing that I welcomed comments on that blog post, I got NONE.

.

The Tantrums of Sroch

Do you have a Screaming Monster (TM) at your house?

They are very, VERY sneaky - and very, VERY fast. It's really amazing. You could have a relatively ordinary Srochelbean in the room, talking to you, and then, faster than lightning, Sroch is whisked away and the SCREAMING MONSTER is there in her place!

And Screaming Monsters, true to their name, only know how to scream. They don't know any words except, possibly, 'no.'

As in: No! NO! NOOOOOO! AAAAAAAAHHHHH

It happens to be rather cute, in a loud, draining kind of way. When Sroch gets upset, and granted it's usually after one small upset follows another follows another, her speech sort of deserts her, leaving her just with screamed basic vowel sounds. 'Ah' or 'eay' are preferred.

Typical identifying movements of the Screaming Monster include but are not limited to:
- kicking / stomping
- limp wristed smacking 'paatching' (reminiscent of 80's Valley Girl hand motions)
- anything the opposite of what is being requested (climbing out of bed when ordered to stay in, staying still when ordered to move, etc)

Fascinatingly enough, Screaming Monsters whilst performing their eponymous cries, hardly ever actually cry. The scream of the Screaming Monster seems to be one of rage, not sadness, and that rage is generally interpreted as "I'm ready to have control of my life now now NOW! Please!"

It has been remarked by trained mediwizards that Screaming Monsters often vanish as quickly as they came, usually upon repeated reinforcement (physical or otherwise) of the desired action or whatever.

At this time, frequently in lieu of a Screaming Monster, you may find yourself with a brief larvae stage of Sullen Yet Resigned Teenager, who likes to be alone, but quickly (blessedly) metamorphosizes into that delightful, sought after prize of parents everywhere, the Cuddly Repentant Monster.

The Cuddly Repentant Monster speaks softly, and says things like this:
"I'm still mad at (one parent) but I like you (other parent)."
and
"You can tell (raged at parent) I won't do that again."
and occasionally even...
"I'm sorry."

Several weeks ago, we were promised that Screaming Monster would NOT return, and indeed, often at the threat of an incursion, merely the mention of the imminent arrival of the Screaming Monster is enough to ward off his arrival. But alas, much like bedbugs in the entire tri-state area (I am soooo not stepping foot on Manhattan island anytime soon), it is hard to eradicate the pest entirely.

But progress is being made. And look, every age tests, and every human gets angry sometimes. We're proud of Sroch that her furies are as mild as they are, that (bli ayin hara!!) they do not result in her lashing out at her sister, just at us (those she trusts the most), and that when they pass, she is aware of the fault. I know plenty of adults who cannot say the same.

I am proud of my words to her tonight as she sat on the toilet (nu nu, we take our moments when they come), after she told me that her screaming and disobedience would not happen again: "You're allowed to feel angry, to be mad, to be upset, to feel hurt. Your feelings are always okay, and I always want to know what they are. But it's some actions that are not okay, and saying 'no' to Abba and Mommy and screaming are not okay."


A word on that "we don't say 'no' to Mommy/Abba" thing. I am delighted and surprised that she gets it. She knows exactly what we mean, that of course you can say 'no' to Mommy/Abba, but you may NEVER say "NO!!!" to Mommy/Abba - and she totally GETS it.

Follows it? A work in progress.
:)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Video backlog

Man oh mano, I am behind on video blogging.

And regular blogging.

And dishes and laundry and, hmm, everything else.

Anyway, enjoy this video from, shoot, JULY.

Only 4 months ago.

I'll catch up soon, sure I will.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

We're still here

New blog post coming soon.

Sorry, housework, 'real' work, Llama's cold (B"H just one day of fever, but otherwise lots of coughs, poor baby) and frenzied internet shopping has been taking up my blogging time. That and the crazy dream I had last night about having a shabbos meal with Michael Jackson, but I digress.

Here's an example of the housework:

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

WonderLlama

Oh Google...where would I be without you?


Llama looking like this...



Has been reminding me of SOMETHING from my childhood, something I saw a million times.

And... I've got it!



It's the image of the clay girl being brought to life in the classic "Wonder Woman: Cheetah on the Prowl" which book (and cassette!) I read / heard a million times in my youth. I am amazed to find the whole thing online as video here.

Cool, huh??

And yes, I had a Wonder Woman costume and as a chubby four year old, I would proudly romp around the house on my dinosaur Dini and save the world. You're welcome.

.

Sukkos 2010 (finally)

Here in the land of better-late-than-never, let's talk about Sukkos and What We Did There.

Quick, before I forget.

Baruch Hashem, unlike last year, we were all together, and while we ended up doing a lot of stay-home-and-host-seminary-girls (a LOT - I think we may have hit the limit even for us, and that's saying something!), we got to do some fun other stuff as well.

Davida's Farm is a fairly local elaborate petting zoo farm thingy. Unsurprisingly, Sroch's reactions were mostly timid / scared / clutching / trembling until she was really, REALLY sure all the animals were behind bars (except for the Walking Menace of DOOM (aka the cute farm dog) that occasionally strolled around). She miraculously unbent enough to actually take a pony ride! The best part of that, of course, was two minutes into it when she was able to let go of Yoav's hand, and said to him - "I like it!"

Llama was much more into the animals, despite some confusion over species (I guess an ostrich DOES look like a chicken, if you've never heard of ostriches before). That said, she was surprisingly hesitant to actually touch any of them. Oh well.

We took a tractor ride ("look, we're on a bumpy road going up a hill! Here are some plants! There is a view! Look, we're on a bumpy road going down a hill!" finis), which may not have been so scintillating for adults but Sroch was perfectly happy having that authentic 'farm' experience, and after all, this was about them, not me. :)

The farm wisely had inflatable jumping thingies set up for the kiddos, as well as plant potting (no animals involved) and of course many frozen sugar treats available, which we actually escaped buying any of.

A modern sukkos miracle.


Park Brittania (details on Hebrew link here) is one of the national (ha! Get it? National?) parks (JNF) nearby. We didn't go to do the forest part, just the jungle gym set up at the entrance. We went with mybestfriendRena, and had a lovely time, despite Llama going in her socks (her shoes were mysteriously too small that day, but now they fit again - hmmm...) and me getting two four year olds to use the outdoor, ahem, facilities (for some reason, they were less picky about bark and rocks and such when they were smaller). Anyway, got some great pictures, but you're going to have to wait for the rest of the post, aren't you?


Kalman's engagement party was a delightful surprise, and the girls were delighted to get dressed up and go. Mazal tov to Mamma Nechy, et al!


Kite flying in the local turtle park (named for stone turtle sculpture in park, not actual turtles) (and yes, 'Stone Turtle' would be an excellent name for a band) rounded out our thrilling activities. Especially amusing was watching the ambient children in the park gravitate to my husband getting one kite up in the air and failing to launch the other two broken ones. At least I know he could work as a Pied Piper should education fail us.


Last but not least Sroch got some seminary girls (well, a madricha, actually, who was only keeping one day so had time) to straighten her hair.

!!!

I won't even make you wait for the slideshow for that one:



I'm going to publish this now, and will go work on the slideshow, and edit later.

Edit: here it is. You want to see it huge. Click on it and watch it big. Really, they're cute, it's worth it.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Filth apprenticeship

Some recent stuff we've been up to...

1) Craftiness. Due to the influence of FilthWizardry, we have recently
---a) painted the sukkah, as you know
---b) made swords and a geodesic dome out of rolled newspapers
---c) from a second-hand skirt, I made Sroch and her friend ballet skirts and a dress up dress as well.

Here's the swords, dome and skirts.

The dress-up dress I don't have a picture of; it was made by sewing the top of a skirt closed, then cutting out a neck hole and arm holes (the top you sewed closed now becomes the top seam of the shoulders), and giving Sroch permanent markers (aiiieee!) to draw on hearts and butterflies and flowers and a necklace on. I am so brilliant.

I made a diagram for you. Click to enlarge.

Makes a dress for a toddler, or a vest for a grown-up. I would have kept it, except... pepto pink? Methinks not what my wardrobe needs. Also, wasn't exactly finished nicely on the edges, you know?



Now, the swords. Yes, they were awesomely cool, but Yoav does wonder why I chose to make a project that would encourage them to attack each other. Hmm.

As you see, Sroch wasn't nearly as excited about being hit as Llama was about striking (Sroch prefers to use the Bonetti defense from my lap). En guarde, and touche!



In the background, you can see the rolls I was making for the geodesic dome, which I was hoping would be a play sukka of sorts, but it totally failed to do so. But I enjoyed it sitting in the corner of the sukka until it was inspected one too many times by a child. And now all the approximately 2,345 seminary girls we had over (give or take) know what a geodesic dome is.



Pictures of all our trips, etc, during Sukkos vacation still to follow. But here's a preview:



Goodnight!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Getting ready for Sukkos!

Yes, it's 3 AM. But my turkey-corn beef-deli roll-fish-broccoli kugel-brownies-lemon bars-baby carrots-unstuffed cabbage-pineapple kugel is (are) all done.

And I am UberMom (TM) for doing a Fun Messy Project on the eve of all that cooking.

(Have I mentioned my Filth Wizardry inspiration yet? More on that, skirts and swords another time.)








Good yuntiv to all!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Low and high holidays

None of you mentioned that we had our 11th anniversary recently!

Thanks a lot. What, you just come here for the kids?

Oh. Right. You do.

Anyway, we had a lovely evening of chinese takeout and frisbee on the Rechovot beach, thoughtfully lit by a full moon (impossible to photograph by my camera). Fun fun!



Why is it that I'm 32 years old and still feel like I'm being sneaky and defiant when I have a beer? Discuss.


And then of course, we had our Rosh Hashana. It was really lovely (we had Cheryl and her husband, yay!) and it was managable, since we ate out two meals and I used my crock pot and freezer freely. According to the calendar we have more three-day-yuntivs in store, which means I really need to buy another freezer. But since Sroch worked out that to have room for it, she'd have to keep it in her bed - we may have to find another solution.

First picture is Sroch basting the challahs I made. Then before yuntiv, the girls were splendidly uncooperative in posing in their holiday finery, so here's the best I got.





Shana tova to all of you, and gmar chasima tova for Yom Kippur this shabbos. Go take a drink now in anticipation. Glub, glub.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Language

Sroch was walking Llama down the steps on shabbos (or maybe it was yuntiv day number one, or yuntiv day number two. Well, one of the three), and I hollered for her to take care of Llama and help her down, and Sroch hollers back -

"Don't worry, I'm saving on her."

Sigh.

For those of you, dear readers, who don't understand my sigh, a brief lesson. In Hebrew, the word 'shamor' means guard, watch, or save. Correct Hebrew grammar would have her say "shamor alaia" (Savta, feel free to correct), which if you translated it painfully literally, would be "guard on her" or as Sroch said, "saving on her."

But realize, my sigh is a happy sigh. Why? I'm not worried about her English grammatical constructs; they are already quite excellent for a child her age ("four and a HALF!") and she reads (well, we read) a ton and I think she'll be fine. No, I am delighted that her Hebrew is so good that she seeks to make English conform to it.

(This specific example may not be the best one, since lots of her friends say "saving on her" as well.)

Sroch will come home from school and tell me in great detail what she learned about the parsha or the upcoming holiday... in English. Last year's teacher spoke English as well, and I was never sure how much Sroch got from the straight Hebrew, but this year's teacher does not speak English - and Sroch not only retains it (bless her, bli ayin hara), but is fully comfortable and able to spit it back translated.

......

Llama is now in English gan, and it has been amazing to see her verbal English blossom. Because until now she was in a Hebrew metapelet situation, where there's less language because there's less instruction, as well as her being corked part of the time, her English is really taking off. That's not to say she's totally intelligible. For example, we couldn't get her to take a video (sigh), but this Rosh Hashana she sang...

"Dip da appa in da chaney, mik a bracha lauw an keer, shana toba u mesooka, ave uh appy seet new ear!"

Right! Shana tova to you too!

(Aside: tonight during her mad freak-out bedtime thing, I was singing "Down in the Valley" and when I got to end and said "valley" she stopped crying, stood up, said "chani!" (honey) and we sang the entire "Dip the Apple in the Honey" together - whereupon she finished and went right back to having a tantrum.)

She's also talking about colors a great deal - but I have no clue if she knows them, or just the words. But "yehllow" is her favorite, followed by "geen" and "puhple."

......

In the inevitable comparisons you try not to make of children and their skill acquisition, I realize the truth of what I was told back with Sroch, that Sroch was exceptionally verbal for her age, because gosh she was counting and having conversations and learning songs and saying 'Mitsubishi' (I tried getting Llama to say it - she just said "bishi" - there ya go, Micah). So I think to myself, self, Sroch was just Ahead, and Llama is Just Fine.

But then, I look back on vintage Druyanity when Sroch was this age (i.e. just short of 2) - and you know what? They're not so different at all.

The difference is - who gets spoken to.

For better or worse, most of what comes out of our mouths is directed at Little Miss Know Everything, her Highness the Elder, as opposed to the Princess Floppy Llama.

So I'm trying to make more of an effort to recall what Llama is capable of, linguistically, and speak to her accordingly. It's working too.

And I'm wondering why not a single child raising book EVER mentioned that this extra effort was necessary. Was I dumb to overlook it? Or is this the plight of all second children?

(Item: I'm a second child, and my brother's vocabulary is better than mine, but I blame his high-scoring Scrabble habits for that.)

I welcome your opinions.

Bedtime

And now, gentle reader, a virtual bedtime at the house of Druyan.
(This does not include schedule exceptions such as three days of yuntiv (!!), shabbos, Daylight Savings Time changes, teething (yes, teething - Llama got two teeth a couple weeks ago, and was a feverish wreck!), or, I don't know, full moons, etc.)

5:30 PM: A nutritious (snort), well-balanced (snigger), thought-out meal (neh!) is served to two tidy, compliant, table-mannered children. Who eat every bite.
Well, usually there's protein and a starch and cucumbers. Ah, cucumbers, last bastion of vegetable matter that both children will - sometimes - eat. My challenge lately has been what one will consume, the other will not touch.

Like mashed potatoes - Sroch loves 'em, Llama not with a 10 foot pole.
Or hardboiled eggs - ditto.
Or sweet potato - Llama yes, Sroch big fat no.
Lately even corn shnitzel, we've been having Sroch eating Llama's for her (!).

Fortunately, the two of them now equally like bread and butter. So that's a starch and protein and fat right there.

6:00 PM: Sated from their feast (or sedated with igloos), the children happily scurry off to the waiting bathtub, to take off their immaculate clothing and get into the water without a fuss (I can't even type this with a straight face), happily awaiting their favorite part of the bath, getting their hair washed.

I put soap in the water so if all that happens is their tushes sit in soapy water for two minutes, it accomplished SOMETHING. Llama especially hates having her hair washed, despite us doing it exactly the same way for almost two years, night after night. Oh well. She will not linger in the tub almost ever, but she still gets in the tub pretty nicely. Sroch, on the other hand, will drag her feet to avoid getting in, kvetch and moan "you're HURTING meeeee!" vwhen you try to help her take off her shoes and socks (and avoid the sandfall that comes out of them - I wonder if the playground at school has any sand left by the end of the year), and then once Compliant Llama (TM) is in, will protest "but IIIII wanted to go in FIRST!!!", etc, etc. And then later, "but IIIII wanted to get out first!"

Yeah, well, whatever. Wash their hair, rinse their hair, put conditioner in Sroch's, scrub behind four ears if I remember, rinse again - well, except when I forget - and remove squirming bodies to the room. Usually Llama comes out first, leaving Sroch alone in the tub to either frolic or kvetch that SHEEEE wanted to get out FIRST, etc. She actually often climbs out herself by now. So onto...

6:30 PM: Grooming.
We're actually pretty good here. Both girls get their curls brushed out, and then special-combed (bli ayin hara, no unwanted guests have been found - but constant vigilance is our watchword.. um, are our watchwords... oh, whatever.*)

Into pajamas, often after both girls reject the ones we choose for them (who lets them have opinions?). Llama gets the plug of her choice (lately "puhpul tzetzi" is her favorite). And then...

6:45 PM: We quietly read two books to the yawning, calmed, attentive children, who then immediately get into bed without a fuss.
Um.
Um.
Um.
Well, each girl gets to pick a book. Llama will 99% of the time pick one of the Rikki Benenfeld books, of which we have all but the new farm one (and yes, we'll be buying it ASAP). Llama will request them by name - "Doctor! Shooool! School! Vistin! Shoppeeng!" Sroch actually sometimes reads them to her, since she - and we - know them by heart. Srochel, Queen of The Stall, will try to pick the biggest, longest book we have.

We sit in the big blue chair, Llama sharing the cushion with me, Sroch perched on the cushy arm. I manage to turn pages with my arms around the girls (aw). Llama's book is first, and while I read Sroch's she'll often scamper down and look at other books or take toys out of their designated toy boxes, because goodness me there aren't any toys just laying on the floor in disarray. Heaven forfend.

And then...

7:00 PM: to bed.
Usually I start by snuggling the Llama, turning off the light, and putting Llama in her cribby, where she has me cover her either with her blankie or with an old head-scarf of mine (kids are weird).
Then I go to Sroch, who is either
1) in bed
2) still in the chair, complaining that I "held Shulamis FIRST! You NEVER hold me first!", or
3) in the bathroom for the last-minute-bladder-emptying-please-God-no-wet-bed-again effort

She then gets into her bed where we have to wrap her blanket around her like a sleeping bag, make her blankie into a ballie for her head (note, I've been making her ballies for about three years now), make sure baby and sippy cup (YES it has like two tablespoons of water in it) are in place - and she's ready for...

Conversation.

Well, we might say shema and sing a bit, but often Sroch is too busy with "I just want to tell/ask you ONE more thing..." (followed by 45 seconds of stammering as she tried to think something up) or whatever. But, finally, and usually with a smile, she lays down to go to sleep.

Or lays down, and comes out five minutes later because "I need to make again." Right.

Llama is usually wonderful about just laying down and even if she doesn't drop off for thirty minutes, she's quiet in her crib. Sroch, though, once she lays down for real, usually lasts about two minutes.

(No, I'm not giving myself an ayin hara by saying Llama usually drifts off nicely, since tonight at bedtime - just like last night between 4 and 5:30 AM - she had a OHMYGOSH TEMPER FIT, thrashing and screaming and making herself choke and no holds barred protest like whoa about going to sleep. Like my baby was possessed by... by... um, by Sarah Rochel at that age. Shoot. Hopefully it's a - very - brief phase! She's probably teething again, although she has 16 teeth already...)

7:15 PM: Oh, shoot, I forgot to brush their teeth.





*But never forget, better wizards than you have lost buttocks, you know.

Whatever happened to my blog?

I read some other bloggers - like the brilliant Filth Wizardry and the funny and poignant Bad4Shidduchim, the wise writing-industry advice of Pub Rants, and others.

And I don't know how they have the head space.

It's not that we're doing any less cute things than this post, exactly three years ago today.

Part of the problem may be work, that is, I use my home computer for work, so I'm less likely to drag it out to blog.. maybe. Some of it is Facebook (jeepers! The first time I admit to having it on this blog!), where ideas that used to germinate into blog posts are more likely to be spat out as undeveloped status update seeds.

And - part of the problem is head space. Keeping track of TWO kids worth of cute things they said is HARD. (I should only have such problems, amen.) And also, poor Llama, there isn't the novelty of First Child (TM) - meaning when she learns a Skill, it's one we already know a child is capable of learning, whilst with Sroch a new Skill was like discovering, I don't know, kryptonite.

But I'm a-gonna try (new year's resolution much?) to do better, because I am sad to not have my blog as bloggied.

So here goes!

Oh, and it's totally not my fault I don't have many pictures; the Union of Grumpy Kinderlach (est. 2008) keeps refusing to take nice pictures.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

First days of school!

Llama started on Sunday...




And Sroch started, after two days of us holding sit-in protests at one school's office, a different school on Tuesday...