Thursday, November 18, 2010

Learning to Pray

Addison has reached an age where she understands more than she doesn't, so I've taken on the task of teaching her how to pray. It's ironic that I'm choosing this over potty training and dressing herself because I take so little of my time to actually pray myself. As I coach my little one through the process, I'm reminded of the simplicity of starting.... the "Thank yous".
There are lots of manufactured reasons not to pray - guilt, bad time management, ego, anger - and most of the time as adults I think we feel so beat up by life that the thought of a prayer almost seems like a resounding echo of all our wrongs that we'd rather just forget. The less we bring them up, the less they actually count..right?
But starting to pray with my daughter reminded me of where prayer should always begin. With thanks.
As we sit in the glider, we fold our hands. Addison is always so reverent during this time that it surprises me. There's no babble, no squirming...she knows that talking to God is important. And she stops to listen.
We start with our immediate family and our house and then move out toward the outer circles of our life, all the while giving thanks for these people and things that God has given us.
My little one doesn't utter a peep until I say "Amen." A little echo can then be heard from her.."amen."
In this season of Thanksgiving, hopefully it will spur in many and in my family, to start with the basics and be thankful to the One who deserves it the most.
At our house, we're going to keep using it as our pattern on "How to learn to Pray," as I teach my daughter and she reteaches me.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


We celebrated our daughter's 2nd birthday with family, friends and the members of the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. It always amazes me how much preparation goes into a 2-3 hour party. I worked tirelessly to prepare the house and the yard for company. Apparently I don't keep those places consistently presentable.
Today I got my reward for all that hard works. Today, my daughter floated from relative to friend to relative doling out hugs and attention. She showed off her new puppy to her visitors all the while sporting a new outfit and shiny new black shoes.
I was thrilled that she could eat her cake this year with an actual utensil. She hasn't mastered the art of blowing out candles, although she did warn me that they were "hot." I'm so glad that I was able to video the bemused look on her face when we all sang "Happy Birthday" to her. We've been practicing that song all week. Her version is a little shortened to "Happy Daaaaaay!". It's so cute.
Even though we weren't successful at blowing out the candles, she did learn to blow bubbles.
My biggest thrill was watching her rip open her own presents. She chose which one she wanted to open and for the first time ever, she opened her own gifts. She was flippant regarding the clothes, which she promptly unwrapped and threw on her cousin Zach's head. I have no idea why. It was funny though. But she loved her new shoes. Who wouldn't love a pair of flashing, pink and white sneakers?
There were a lot of cool toys and some great books and puzzles in the mix - all of which Addison respectfully played with for a few seconds after opening.
All in all, it was a pretty wonderful day filled with enough sugar to kill a small dog, but also with enough proud moments to fly me to the moon.
And now for the mushy stuff:
My sweet baby is starting her 3rd year of life on this sometimes unlikable planet. To me, she embodies the best of humanity...the most beautiful part of life. She amazes me daily. Feeds my soul with her happy babble. Physically, she's 33lbs and 35 inches. To me that's just a whole lot of amazing.

I wrote this on her birthday and apparently never actually posted it. Maybe I forgot...because I'm now the mother of a 2 year old. It really does change things. I've lost count of the number of tantrums my little wonder has thrown and how many times she's hit her head on the floor in the process. There's no telling how many times "no" has been the standing answer for absolutely any question. And yet, I also am losing track of  how many times I actually understood what she was asking for or answered an actual question that she spoke. This mommyhood stuff is so much fun.

Literal Love

The race will begin soon. Around and around my bathroom ceiling they'll go, following the picture moulding. They will run this race for a while and never seem to get tired of the fact that they're going absolutely nowhere.
The ladybugs have landed.
Every November, they swarm over town. They are in search of the Alpha house. Any big, white house on the block serves as a beacon for the many little red/orange spotted bugs. Fortunately for us, we own several Alpha houses.
Those ladybugs love that house. They love it so much that they are a huge headache for anyone living inside. From now until after the new year I will battle these harmless yet annoying little creatures for my sake and the sake of my tenants. In all, their life is short and for some of the offenders..even shorter.

My daughter has a puppy....Daisy. She loves that puppy more than anything I've ever seen her interact with. She reaches a whole new level of excitement with the sound of a tiny bark. When in the room with Daisy, it is her mission to love Daisy. And sometimes, I fear it will be to death.
With all her strength, she will squeeze Daisy around the neck. She'll bury her face in her fur until she's actually lying on top of the poor dog.  Daisy is a really good natured dog. She bears it with barely a yelp. I hope she knows that Addison is just loving her so much...that Daisy can barely stand it.

The chatter in our house has greatly increased. Addison doesn't need anyone to be there to carry on a conversation. It's very amusing to watch her talk to her baby and bear and change their diapers and guide their hands as she pretends that they are real. Who knew that at 2 she could do all this? I'm still amazed at the learning curve that has taken place for a child of 2 years. If only we continued to learn at such a pace, we'd have colonized Mars by now or discovered new fuels that won't kill the environment. Or even better, we might all have those flying cars that we used to dream we'd have by the year 2000.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Snow White and Big Boy

 Addison has the longest lashes. They are as plush and perfect as the pair you can buy at the drugstore. She's very fair-skinned as well. And then there's Big Boy...her large, toddler-sized dwarf that the rest of the world knows as Dopey. So, it was completely perfect for Addison to be Snow White for Halloween. I think she pulled it off. She never was able to say Trick-or-Treat, but she managed a lot of Thank you's as a consolation. She had so much fun.


 It was the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse at our house for Addison's birthday. It's her favorite show EVER. She can spot Mickey a mile away. So we celebrated Mouse style. :)
 All the characters contributed to the meal.

 Homemade Mouse Ear Party Hat.
 This year, no one had to help her eat the cake.
She was so excited about her gifts and opened them like a pro.