Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Going on a trip with my baby

A short funny:

Abigail said we're going on a trip, and she's driving. She sat down next to me on the couch, made the requisite car noises while waving her fists up and down (as if she's moving the steering wheel). Once in a while she emitted a high-pitched "burp."
K: "What was that, Abigail?"
A: "That was the car stopping at the red light."

She resumed driving (I guess when the light turned green again), and then suddenly made a weird "ptchu" noise.

K: "What was that, Abigail?"
A: "Speed bumps."

Monday, June 15, 2009

100 books

The local library has a summer reading program to keep kids immersed in books while they're not at school. The "big goal" is to read 100 books -- then you get a medal, your picture goes up on the wall in the library, and I think there may be some other rewards as well.

This morning we decided to go to the library before Abigail's gymnastics class. Elizabeth told me that if she checks out 10 books today, reads them all and returns them tomorrow, borrows another 10 books tomorrow, reads them, and then returns them the next day, and so on and so forth, then in less than two weeks, she'll have completed her 100 books.

I don't know about you, but whenever she says things like this, I'm just blown away. Maybe it's just the obligatory mommy pride, who knows. But something tells me that there's something just a little different about her.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


A few days ago I asked my husband to buy three artichokes. He came home with two because, frankly, he's scared of them and convinced that the kids aren't going to go anywhere near them. I was pretty sure that he was right about one of the kids -- Elizabeth is a great eater and will try almost anything once. Abigail, on the other hand, will declare that she doesn't like anything that resembles a green vegetable. She'll eat carrot sticks and corn, but she will eat edamame out of their shells (probably because it's fun to eat). Peas and green beans, she'll eat if I put them into her mouth, but she'll try to leave them on the plate if given a choice. Lettuce and fresh spinach, same thing, but with those I have a lower success rate. The best success I have with her vegetable eating is when we get "dda-ddu-goh" -- that's the word for "vegetable" that Elizabeth used when she was about 1-2 years old, in reference to the bag of frozen peas/carrots/corn/green beans. The kids will eat those straight out of the freezer (except the green stuff for Abigail).

Anyways, so he got two artichokes, and it took me a couple days to muster up the courage to prepare and cook them. I've eaten a few artichoke leaves about 20 years ago and thought it was kind of a neat experience, but I've never ever even watched anybody prepare and cook them. Never even saw it on TV. I mean, what's the choke look like? Will I recognize it and not mutilate the precious heart right below it? What if I don't get out the whole thing? Will I ruin the whole artichoke? Will I cause family-wide choking because of this? What if I cut off too many leaves? What if I stain my carbon-steel knives? I don't have lemon slices!

I got the artichokes out of the fridge today, cleaned them (and pricked my fingers on the thorns), got them prepared for steaming, and then realized that I don't have a steam basket big enough to fit two artichokes. Thank goodness that I only had two -- who knows how I would've gotten three to cook at once. Well, I was able to get them into the microwave and cooked. Whew.

After they cooled a little bit, I was eating the leaves and was quite proud of my accomplishment, when Elizabeth (with Abigail not far behind) asked me what I'm eating. I told her it's artichokes, and she wanted to try one. I dipped a leaf in salad dressing and showed her how to scrape the leaf with her lower teeth. Abigail then said she wants to try one too(!), so I did the same for her. Then they both asked for more! And then more!

I couldn't believe my ears -- my preschool-aged girls (Abigail!!) were asking for more artichoke! And then when we got to the heart and stem, I cut them into bite-sized pieces and we all shared them. Now I think Abigail was just happy that she had something with which to scoop up salad dressing, but nonetheless, she was really good about scraping the flesh from the artichoke leaves. And I was happy that she was willingly trying this new and very foreign vegetable.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Holes and haves

I took ten strawberries out of the fridge and washed them. Elizabeth saw me do this and quickly calculated (don't ask me how) that four people cannot easily share ten strawberries. She then told me that I need to pull out two more strawberries -- that way we can each eat three strawberries.

How many preschoolers do you know can do this?

I was thinking at first that the girls will eat two strawberries each, and then my husband and I will eat three each. But instead I decided that this will become a quick lesson in division. I asked her how many half-strawberries are on the cutting board -- she quickly told me there are twenty. Then I asked her how we would apportion twenty strawberry-halves into four bowls. She drew twenty half-circles representing the twenty half-strawberries, and then eyeballed that the answer would be five halves. Then we looked at the five halves and rearranged them to look like wholes -- how many wholes and halves are there when we have five halves? She answered two and a half. So now we went back to the strawberries. I gave her four bowls, cut two strawberries in half, and asked her to put equal amounts of strawberries into each bowl. Just as you'd expect, she put two and a half strawberries into each bowl.

Yes, I'm just a teensy bit proud of my little genius.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


So Elizabeth and I are looking at the 50 states and reading out their names: Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi...

Elizabeth: Mississippi??!?
me: yes, Mississippi. Funny name, isn't it?
E: Mrs. Sippy!! Hahahahaaaaa!

The next morning Elizabeth clinks her milk cup with Abi's sippy cup and introduces the two: Mrs. Sippy, Mr. Sippy.