Monday, September 10, 2012

Just Stuff

The other day Amari asked me to teach her some ballet. Fortunately, although I didn't have any girlfriends in middle school, I did have a lot of friends that were girls. Yay. Who knew that the plies and releves my friend Jessica taught me years ago would one day make me a better parent.

"Plie," I'd say, and Amari would bend her legs in a half squat.
"Grande plie," and she would cast her arms out and go deeper.
"Releve," up on her toes
"And down," and she would come down and spin in cirlces.

This went on and on, with the plies getting deeper, the releves higher, and the spinning much much longer. Eventually, she collapsed on the floor, picked up her head and said, "What's that Dada?"
"What's what?"
"What's making the house spin around?"

Cute, if I weren't worried it might be an early indicator that she has the genetic, I-like-feeling-different, alcoholic gene.


Both of my ladies are sick right now, which makes both of them a little moody and unpredictable. When bedtime rolled around, Amari was adamant that she would not brush her teeth.
"Come on, lady. We brush our teeth every night."
"My don't want to."
"Do you want your teeth to fall out?" Fortunately she doesn't know that happens anyway.
"Yes," she replied.
"How are you going to eat cookies without teeth," I asked, certain I'd trumped her.
"My will just suck on them."

Damn you, smarty pants.

Cookie Monster Doesn't Need Teeth, Dad

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Go Diego Go

Yes, it's true - I started a ridiculous fake gambling football blog and it has completely supplanted the one I write here for Amari. I've often wondered if my love of sports will be one of her early childhood resentments. "Not now, the Giants are in a pennant race. There are only 89 games left in the season, so this one's really important." After hearing her wake up from a nap crying, "No. No. Don't take my stroller," I'm not too worried that I'm mistreating her. Life's pretty good if that's her worst nightmare.

My worst nightmare - also not so bad - is that Amari will continue to wake me up at four in the morning every Wednesday, which has bee the trend the past three weeks. If she just woke up and tossed and turned a bit that would be fine, but instead she says, "My hungry," and if I don't jump up right away she just says it over and over again until I do. It's like Chinese water torture trying to block out the low whine of a hungry child. I'm guessing growth spurt - or we just need to stop starving her at night.

When she's not waking me up early, Amari is finding a natural groove as a pretty sweet little kid. Last week CC and I took her out to breakfast. She knelt on the booth seat, played with her horsie, colored, and reminded us that she was going to have mad 'n cheese about eighteen times before she reminded the waitress. While we were waiting for our food, an elderly woman kept glaring (I thought) back at us, then returning to her meal. "What's your problem, lady?" I thought to myself. At the end of her meal, she stopped at our table, asked how old Amari was, then told us she thought she was an amazingly well-behaved child, the likes of which she "rarely sees these days." I did not disclose that we were starving her at night to make sure she's quiet during breakfast.

On the home front, Amari has taken her affection for Diego to new heights, deciding most days that she is in fact him. This has been awesome, because Diego is a "big boy" who doesn't like pacifiers and is much more open-minded when it comes to eating vegetables and new food dishes. I'm working on convincing her that he also loves to do dishes, yard work, and windows. So far, I'm just thrilled that we are pacifier-free for a good chunk of most days. I was hoping that a smooth transition idea would present itself, and right now - emphasis right now - it has.

Diego still hangs out with Amari, and often carries her pacifier for her in case she shows up, but when I catch her with it and say, "Oh hi, Amari, nice to see you again. I missed you," she smiles, pulls the pa-pa out and says, "My Diego."

We'll see what happens next...

"Noooooo...not my stroller."