Sunday, February 21, 2010

Show- And Not Tell

We are visiting my parents in Indy on a whirlwind tour and Fran and Claudia are sharing a room. Claude is tucked in a pack and play and Fran is in one of the twin beds. I am sleeping across the hall all stretched out.

This morning I was greeted by a rustling doorknob and four pitter-patters: one pair of socked feet and one pair of footie zip-zip jammies. At 7:30. (I had been up all hours of the night due to my caffeine-to-stay-awake-while-driving-to-Indy strategy.) I admit, I was pretty bleary. No one wanted to snuggle. They wanted to play and eat miniature pancakes and Lucky Charms. (Curses to the toys and junk food with which the old ones stock the house!) We pitter-pattered downstairs.

Later in the morning, Grandma came down followed much later by Grandpa. Cereal. Old-school Fisher Price. The doll highchair (with Claudia sitting in it). Lots and lots of coffee. Then, Mom and I made a run to O'Malia's food Market with the kids. When we pulled into the parking lot, it finally occurred to me: how did Claudia get out of bed?

"Fran," I said, "How did Claudia get out of her bed this morning? Did she climb out of her pack and play?"

"No," he said, his eyes growing wide. "She was standing up and talking in her bed so I went over to her." He started acting this out as best he could strapped in his carseat. "I pulled her up by her arms and then I reached over and I grabbed her and held her body and pulled her up and over the pack and play. And then I put her down and we came into Mommy's room."

I looked at him in amazement at his description. Most mothers would just find the commentary and accompanying actions delightful, but I was practically bursting with pride at how he slowed down an important action. Show- and not tell. He didn't just say "I got Claudia out of her bed," he showed me with his words and actions, like a story.

I was pretty bleary until the show-not tell description. Then I felt wide awake!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Extra! Extra!

Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

Fran has been making newspapers lately. He scrawls out some news- quite quickly- and uses his tiny scissors to cut the page out of the notebook. Next, the paper goes into the delivery bag (which is the small blue cooler with a shoulder strap that we take to the pool.) He delivers the papers around the house.

This newspaper activity brings about a slew of emotions: my pride with his autonomy in incorporating writing into play, his love of newspapers, my excitement with much quicker he is writing now, my sadness at not seeing a paperboy in years, my relief that we still get at least a Sunday paper and the coupon paper mid-week to demonstrate the value of newspapers, and pure enjoyment in watching him entertain himself. I even left a copy of Dav Pilkey's The Paperboy out for him at breakfast. Now he'll probably need green rubber bands.

It's so nice to know that I'll wake up to a morning paper tomorrow. I hope it's good news. With Fran, it usually is.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Snow Days

I cannot fathom living somewhere without snow days.

We had a lovely one yesterday. We started our day with a nice breakfast: turkey bacon during the week! Then we all bundled up and shoveled our 10 inches of snow, built a "snow mountain" in the yard, cleaned snow off the cars, and took a baby sled/ dog walk. We came in for a mac and cheese feast. Next came the Easy Bake oven and a tasty-albeit small- layer cake. We figured out the 100s collection and finished up some valentines. When Claudia woke up from her nap, there was dramatic play in the basement. Then an outing to Trader Joe's to get more chocolates before heading out to go sledding on the big hill.

I felt really greedy for wanting another day.