Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Thinking Skills and Humane Empathy.

Today during the pre-school learning part of the day Cora and I did a thinking skills sheet. It had rows of four objects, and requested that the child circle the "different" one.

Cora did excellently. She got the hat without stripes and the sock without flowers. The third set, with fish provided a problem. She circled EVERY single fish. When I asked her about it, and pointed out that one of the fish didn't have a pink fin she looked at me like I was crazy. "All different Mommy."

"Why?" I asked.

"Names." She said.

"What are their names?" I asked.

"Bob." she said pointing to the first fish. "Fish" was the second, and "Fish Bob, and Bob Fish" the third and fourth.

Here is an interesting thought. A preschooler pointed out that fish cannot be the same, because like people, they have their own identity. They are living, where as the other objects are not.

Perhaps I am making a big deal out of something very simple, like Cora covering her butt over a wrong answer. However it is a heartening thought to think that at three years old a child has no stereotypes when it comes to living things, even fish, and values them all enough to provide them with unique (Albeit similar) names.

Changing Room

Yesterday I swallowed my pride and privacy and headed to the mall to buy maternity cloths with my daily entourage. Nyobi's new umbrella stroller worked wonderfully, and at a total of ten pounds did not make my hip ache pulling it in and out of the car. Cora loves this particular mall. What three year old wouldn't enjoy a mall that contains a carousel, a tree house slide fort, a dairy queen, a Disney store, a build a bear work shop and enough "do not touch" stuff to get bribed with each of the previous.

Speaking of little things, showing up with two children, and on a serious mission for maternity cloths does have its perks. The sales ladies hung my stuff in a dressing room for me to allow my hands freedom. Of course, it might have been in their interest. I grabbed Cora about the same number of times as I did items to try on.

Once ensconced in the curtained changing room I only had a few more issues to overcome. First, my three year old wanted to SEE the store, so she kept on trying to open the curtain while I changed. Once I managed to convince her that it was a bad idea, and she would not get to ride the carousel if she kept it up, she desisted.

Instead, in a loud voice she began to give a running commentary of my clothing options, and body. "Mommy, your BIG baby sits here." she said, poking at my belly button through the belly panel on one pair of shorts.

"That shirt is BLECK! I think Not a good deal!" she said as I looked critically in the mirror. I was still on the fence, but knew the second she said those words that I wouldn't buy it.

"I think those pants are a good deal!" she said about another pair. "Your baby belly is showing." Then as if she needed to repeat the first utterance. "Its BIG!"

A fascinating interruption occurred, as the sales lady offered me an elegant outfit of tangerine top and stark white pants. Did this women have children? White? With a three year old and a one year old?

However, this did require me to remind Cora NOT to play with the curtain.

Her important feed back on clothing finished, and curtain attempt two thwarted, she decided to see what was under the wall to our left. Squatting down she peaked under the partition, and then began to drop down onto her knees, potentially to put her whole head under the wall. There was a pause in changing while I explained to her that this was not polite. I happened to know that the woman next to me was working on her first child, and those women tend to not understand the indecencies of motherhood.

Once Cora sat on the bench and began taking off her shoes just like Mom, Nyobi decided she didn't want to hang out in the stroller and started to scream.

In the end, some brilliant and possibly foolish woman put a bag of M&M's in my purse, which satisfied the attention of both children toward the very end of the dressing session. Actually, I think that mall is my favorite, it allows me all sorts of little leverages, like the carousel, and the treehouse slides (changing room trip two) and the disney store (changing room trip three). Then there is that treat at the end, for sucessfully not killing my children out of embarressment, the Dairy Queen.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Wedding Issues

First off, Cora was a flower girl in her Aunts wedding this last weekend. Second, she was excellent. She participated in the petal sprinkling, and walked like she was supposed to. She enjoyed herself too. There are very few pictures of her standing still and smiling, but rather hugging arms, winking at the camera and making faces.

They are lucky she managed to make it down the aisle at her age. The other flower girl (and the older more responsible person) had to convince her that it was Okay that all the petals were not used. She was "finishing up" by throwing them AT the brides maids. Bored, she sat down in the chair set aside for the Bride, and was finally delivered to our pew.

Silence is not something children remember. With Nyobi, she usually doesn't talk much if the Nuky is placed in her mouth. However, she chose that particular morning to try and start conversations with the people behind me, and explain to me in a LOUD whining tone why she didn't want to be there. Cora was much better. She helped the father with his homely, and preteneded to read from the missal. How she manages to time her outbursts right at the points when the rest of the congregation falls silent I will never know.

I've decided I'm lucky though. I never MADE her go to the bathroom before the cerimony, a fact I realized about five minutes and one bouncy flower girl into the wedding. Do you have any idea how relieved I am NOT to have to deal with a loud "I need to go Potty!" request?

All in all, their Aunts wedding was beautiful and dream like. Coras finger missed the front of the cake frosting by a few millimeters. Nyobi didn't scream bloody murder, and the wee ones left the reception by 8 PM. Actually so did I. Partying and Mommyhood don't combine well, especially the in-vitro mommyhood type.