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.'


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)."
"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: