Saturday, December 31, 2011

Every kid she's played with has had a cold, so...

Yup, now she's sick, too. The past two nights she's had a terrible cough. No fever or much mucus but a croup-like cough. So we're taking her to the doctor today to see if he can determine what she's got.

Like with food and naps and sleep and how carefully they're watched at the park, here it's different with kids and their colds. If we were at home, we'd have seen almost no one with a child this past week as at home no one would have taken their kid put with as much snot, coughing and sneezing as they all had. But the parents did, and the kids had fun playing.

Anyway, now she's got a cough that woke her up and hurt enough at 4am she was up until 6am. At least she wanted to go back to sleep in her crib. Means she was serious about wanting to go back to sleep.

The good thing is she's in a good mood and no other symptoms.

Maybe this is why she started asking to go home to "Carolina's big house" in new york. At first we though she wanted to leave Guanajuato and go to see Abuela, who didn't come with us on the day trip. And then though she wanted to go to her little play house in their back garden. But when we got home to Abuela's house, she started crying a lot. Demanding to go home. So we understood.

Then we had a Skype call yesterday with my parents and she got upset since she wanted to be at their place since they had new presents for her from a family friend.

I'm not sure what to tell her as she gets more upset when I say we'll go soon. As her papa is going home tomorrow very early, before she's awake. And we are here another 5 days. And then a night at my folks'.

I'm a bit nervous.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

I have a baby, too.

A few days ago a pregnant friend was over and as she's ready to give birth any day, she's got quite a pronounced belly. When we were saying goodbye, I decided to tell Carolina that the woman has a baby inside. She seemed to take this in stride and eventually wanted to know if the baby can come out and "play with Carolina."

Fast forward to today, she's playing in the garden with other kids and comes up to me. Pushes out her belly, points to it and says, "I have baby." I explain, no just a lot of food in her belly. She says again, "No, I have baby, too." I relent. Ok, is all I say.

She repeats this later while in the tub. And then decides she really just has a lot of good in her belly.

This is too funny. I'm hoping that she delays a bit on starting to ask when her brother can play with her as I AM CERTAIN she will be terribly disappointed there are endless-to-her months left AND THEN it's going to be a newborn, not a 2 year old who comes home.

Ah, well. I did open the can of worms...

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Slowly Party

The other day, I mentioned there was going to be a party after papa arrived in Mexico with other kids. A first birthday party of a friend's son. And she asked if she could go to (what sounded like) a "slowly party". It was definitely an "oh" and "lee" sound after a mushed up sound. So she seemed to like that I said "slowly".

She couldn't tell me what a slowly party was but apparently anything that's like a birthday party is now a slowly party.

For Christmas, Niño Dios brought her a full set of Disney princesses and a tutu (among many other things). She is, unsurprisingly, in love with her tutu. It took a bit of negotiating to get her to take it off (from over her pjs), to go to church and then take a nap.

We'll see if she will put on her Christmas dress and not insist on the tutu.

I'll post a photo of her in pjs and tutu soon.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Some highlights from this week

We put a turtleneck on her this morning for the first time and told her it's a "turtleneck", to which she asked, "Wheah turtle?" 

After making chocolate chip cookies and I showed her where the chocolate chunk was, she took a bite and said, "I like eating chocolate!"

She has been refusing to eat dinner and so I let her pick most nights what she has for dinner. This has amounted to: plain pasta with butter, toast with margarine, hummus with crackers where the cracker simply serves as a reusable spoon (twice this week), and pasta with a pork tenderloin that she actually ate TWICE. But that's the only meat in about two weeks.

Fun stuff!!!!

We are going to get her a twin bed after the holidays and take down the crib and crib mattress and put it away until #2 is ready for it. I'm thinking solid color comforter and bed skirt with character sheets that she picks out. I'm guessing Hello Kitty, Minnie and Pooh or Peanuts will be top contenders.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

First Times: Meeting Santa & first movie

Yesterday, we brought Carolina to meet Santa. Actually, we went to Macy's to look at the window display and then decided just to see if we could see Santa from the end of the line. Once we got there it was like Santa disneyland, and you can't see anything.

We got on line, and Carolina was fine and happy to be on line as there was initially a train and then "inside" the train, then a winter wonderland with a talking tree and singing frosties and penguins. Then off to meet Santa.

She was happy enough to sit next to Santa but didn't want to hold his hand or sit on his lap. This was WAY better than I had imagined and I'm glad we took her.

I guess those three times at Disney, having to wait on line for a ride, was really good training for this line at Macy's, which was only about 20-30 minutes long. (I won't go into details about how a very long line went so quickly on this blog, but if you ask I'll let you know.)

Then today, we took Carolina to her first movie at the movie theater to see The Muppets. It is playing at the local cinema about 7 blocks away, and an afternoon showing was at 3pm -- great timing since that's just after her nap. Since kids tickets are only $5, it was worth it to go there (in case of too much fidgeting or a lack of interest) and be close to home than to a larger theater where tickets for each of us would be $12 and a subway ride fare.

About halfway through she looked at me (sitting on my lap) and pointed to the theater door and said "Home!" I asked her what home, and she told me "Cah-leena home!" I realized she wanted to go home and was getting either bored or a little scared. Any time there was a slightly dramatic scene, she was a bit nervous that something bad was happening. I told her that Miss Piggy would be on screen again shortly, currently her favorite Muppet, and that got her to stay a bit longer. I had to keep cajoling her and she ended up staying through the whole thing.

All in all a LOT better than I anticipated, but I won't be taking her to the theater any time soon. Maybe after her 3rd birthday...

It was a lot of fidgeting to put up with, and I was prepared to leave at any point if we needed to, but she's very chatty and if the theater was more packed it would have been uncomfortable. She was the ONLY child in the theater, which was weird. And Ismael and I were the only adults laughing out loud. There were some pretty funny parts, so I was surprised at how quiet it was. And then I noticed a few couples making out, so looks like local theaters with cheap tickets are still the same as when I was in school.

Getting out of the crib herself continues

This morning I was greeted by the sound of "Mamaaaah! Mamaaaah!" from behind a closed door. It was 6.30am and not so early I couldn't deal with it but a little too early for Sunday morning when another 1/2 hour would have been perfect.

So I make my way over to her door, open it slowly (having learned my lesson from yesterday) and she pulls the door toward her and patters out to the dark living room. Just standing there looking a little sad, I bend down and ask her what's the matter, and also explain everyone is sleeping. Everyone at this point being just papa.

She tells me she wants to lay down in my bed. So off we go. She puts her head down on my pillow and closes her eyes. She's like that for about 10 minutes, then starts to get a little fidgety and I open my eyes and find myself looking directly into her open eyes with about 2" between us.

I close my eyes quickly in hopes she might do the same. I then peek one eye open and she's there still staring at me. Quickly close mine again. Wait a minute or so, peek one eye open and she's closed hers again. Phew. I then feel a little finger very, very gently touch my nose. Ah, well, sleep time is over. I see if ignoring her will get her to close her eyes again, knowing full well that it won't. Nope.

She then tells me that it's time for lunch (which is what all meals are currently called), and we go to the potty before getting some cereal.

I try to fight it so as not to wake up Ismael but start dry heaving pretty strongly while in the bathroom, which is adjacent to our bedroom. (At 15 weeks I'd thought we were pretty much passed this but not always.) With Carolina looking on a little worried, and now standing directly next to me at the sink, it finally passes. We go on to the kitchen, followed very sleepily (modorro!) by papa.

I was going to wait until she's closer to 3 to get her a bed, but it might be time after we get back from Mexico to not only get her a bed but also a digital clock so I can teach her that until the number all the way on the left says "7" she has to stay in her room. She's still too short to open her door on her own, but I'm sure that soon enough that'll change, too.

I know my husband will be pleased as he's wanted to get her a bed of her own for many months now. I still think she's not QUITE ready but we're very nearly there. I'll start shopping.

Thanksgiving fancy outfit

With her fancy coat
Without fancy coat

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Talking, talking... clever!

Thanksgiving was a very relaxed affair. Carolina helped us call a few family members who don't live by and say "Happy Tanks-giveeng!"

We had to practice that one a few times during the days before Thanksgiving as "Happy Halloween" was her preferred greeting.

During Thanksgiving dinner, Carolina discovered two things:
She prefers ham to turkey, and she LOVES gravy.

So, when she'd run out of ham, she'd say "Mas ham pleeeze!" and when we gave her back her plate with new ham, she'd look at it first and then say, "Mas greevy?"

I had brought her new Christmas outfit (there are two) with the blue dress and white, faux fur coat. When she woke up from her nap, before we ate, we got her dressed in the fancy outfit. Decked out in fancy tights and new, fancy shoes. She was delighted.

Earlier that day, she came into my parents' new bathroom after I took a shower and asked me "What dat name?" (which is her way of saying "What's that called?"; an improvement from "Wha dat?") while pointing to the squeegee in their tub area. I explained it was a squeegee and that you use it to take water off the walls and windows. (The new bathroom has a glass door and wall instead of a shower curtain like we have at home.) The next morning after we got home, Carolina found a plastic piece from a clothing tag (the kind that is straight and then has a perpendicular piece at the end). She came up to me with the piece and says, "move the water away." I had to look at this thing in her hand closely before I realized that she thought it looked like a mini squeegee, and that we had talked about that the day before. Very clever.

One more story: This morning I went into Carolina's room to get her up and she was not only awake (as she normally is), she was quietly standing behind the door. Scared the bejesus out of me. So I quickly composed myself, kneeled down and said, "How did you get out of bed?" She explained in her own way that she got out of the crib, on to the big bed next to it, and climbed down the other side, walked around her crib and then came to look at the elephants on her wall. I then asked, "So you went to look at the elephants and the lion?" She then explained yes, and it was so she could do a "biiiiig poop" while standing up. (Standing up pooping is her preferred method these days. Just ask Aunt Jee.)

We then talked about how going poop in the potty or the big potty is more comfortable and easy since the big potty has water and you hear the poop go "PLOP" and in the little potty you hear a little "plop". So that she should call for mommy or papa when she needs to poop in the morning if we didn't come in yet. She thought that was all hilarious. We'll try using underwear and actually using the potty more than once a day after we get back from Mexico. I think it'll be easier since she'll be another month or two older and we will have time at home (with it snowing or raining or being too cold to go out) to really take the time to get comfortable with the potty. And if she's not ready then, we'll try again before she goes to nursery school in March.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Papa find it!

This has been said with great pleasure in our home recently, "Papa find it!"

It's not a command or a request, it's more of a celebratory exclamation. Here's how it came about:

Roughly a month or so ago, Carolina couldn't find something (probably one of the pieces of her etch-a-sketch set or one of her Minnie dolls) and we started looking. We looked under the couch, bookshelves, beds, in the seat cushions, etc. We couldn't find it, and by "we" I mean "Mommy". So to cut short her anxiety and asking about it, I just said, "Maybe Papa can find it when he gets home." She was happy with that.

During her bath, Ismael came home. I told him we were looking for whatever it was, and he found it inside of a minute or so. He showed Carolina and she was delighted, "Papa find it!"

Something similar happened a few days or a week later. And Papa found it again.

Since then, whenever anything is lost (or she can't find it immediately after looking absolutely nowhere or calling out for the inanimate object "Where are you?"), Carolina tells me "Papa find it."

It became a joke and then there was something missing last week or the week before and after much looking *I* found it. I was pretty proud as it was small and in an unusual place, found after 2 days of looking. I presented it to Carolina by saying, "Look! Carolina I found it. Mommy found it." And she looked at me and said gleefully, "Papa find it!"

I let it go. The important thing was that it was found and she was happy. Then a day or so later, this happened again where I found the thing. She tells me again that Papa find it. I decided to test this.

"No, Carolina, Mommy found it."
"Papa find it!"
"Carolina, Papa is at work. Mommy just found it for you. Mommy find it."
"No! Papa find it!"

Ok, ok. Papa find it. Of course, Papa is exceptionally proud to be the one she thinks of and credits when anything is missing and needs to be found. He's also the one we go to when something is tangled up. He's VERY good at both finding things and fixing tangled things.

So, okay, it's a little disappointing not to get credit -- but she adores her father. If he needs to find it so she's happy, I can live with that.

PS Started reading 1Q84 by Murakami. It's enormous and I hope to be done with it before the second baby comes in May as I KNOW I'll not get to read anything for about a year after he (or she) arrives :)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Well, Halloween was a smashing success! Carolina went to a kid's party for about 2 hours and then they all went out trick-or-treating in the local group of houses known as 'The Gardens'. We got separated from the group of about 15 toddlers and parents shortly after we started out about 6.45pm. That was fine, as it was easier to navigate the older kids and homes without a large group.

Every house we went up to Carolina would say, clearly, "Trick or Treat!" "Tank you!" "Happy Halloween". She was very polite and all the parents seemed to enjoy giving her candy as she is very small and had on a very cute bat outfit.

A little after 7.30pm, she told me we needed to go to "Cah-lina's house" and nobody else's. I told her we were going to meet up with Papa (as he left work early to meet us outside), and then she had a meltdown. Poor kid was suddenly VERY tired. I not only forgot her sippy cup but also (didn't expect to be out this late) the chupon! Ack.

I was very glad she had taken a nearly 3 hour nap earlier today as she was able to better enjoy the evening.

So we found Papa and shortly after she was happy again. We called my parents, his parents, his grandmother and an aunt and uncle, so that Carolina could say 'Happy Halloween' to them, too.

It was actually a lot of fun to go with her, and I'm sure next year will be even better as she now has an idea of what happens. Her favorite candy this year was the lollipops. I promised she could have one when she got home, but she had pancakes instead for dinner as she was actually pretty hungry. Lollipops tomorrow, and mommy gets chocolate!!!

I'm so tired from this first trimester tiredness that we just ordered pizza. Hooray for mommy, too!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Being polite

Today, during music class, the teacher let the kids (as usual) strum the guitar strings at the close of class.

About 4 kids ran over and pushed in front of Carolina. She looked at me, looks back at them and then says, "Cuse me kids. Play geetar too?" no one moved. She lOoked at me again. I smiled and motioned to her to move in. She lOoked frustrated.

I walked closer and said quietly "If you walk around there, there's some room for you to squish in."

She did and then all the kids left to get stickers. So she had the geetar all to herself for a few minutes. Delighted!

Friday, October 14, 2011

She went in the potty!

For the first time, she asked to go potty and then actually peed!

After a big poop, it was time for her bath. So in she went, got all soapy and then suddenly looks at me and says "potty" while pointing to it. I said "do you want to go potty?" she says "yes" and tries to climb out of the tub.

I'm amazed and say, "really?" she's trying to get out with a mission.

So I grab her soaking wet and put her on the potty. She sits, smiles at me and starts to pee. She looks VERY serious about it. When she's done, she declines toilet paper but I wipe her anyway and then pop her back into the tub.

I was so proud, I was nearly moved to tears. I of course was emphatic about telling her how proud I was. Then ran out of the bathroom and called her papa. He was equally thrilled and let her know on speakerphone. She was clearly delighted we were so happy.

I'm surprised that I cared so much. Honestly, I still have my doubts this is the fast lane to potty trained but I think we're at least on the on ramp.


Potty training?

I'm not sure you can call this potty training, and I really don't care, but it's worth a post. Now that she's almost 28 months and still afraid of pooping without her diaper on, and not very interested I'm the potty, we decided to use her new Caillou doll as a guinea pig.

Since the doll has removable shorts, my husband showed Carolina that Caillou goes potty just like they do in her potty book. So she was willing to sit on the potty without pants and a diaper after Caillou. But she will only go with her papa. And doesn't actually pee.

If she has to really go, she wants her diaper on. Which, honestly, is fine.

We're just having Caillou go after breakfast and if that gets her to sit down for a minute or two, then great.

She's not telling me she has to go and usually tells me "no" when I ask if she's pooing and she VERY clearly is.

I will not change Caillou's "diaper". He's the only doll she has and loves that's definitely a big kid who uses the potty. At least I was quick enough to do that when she asked me to change his diaper too, one day.

I'm sure she'll get the hang of it. And I may mourn the passing of diapers as they are CONVENIENT on the subway and other outings.

It's funny, by the time I'm pregnant with #2, maybe she will be on her way to potty training. Or we'll have two in diapers. Whatever. Everyone poops :)

Reading us a bedtime story

Last night, Carolina decided that she needed both of us in the room at storytime.

So after I read a story, she picked one in Spanish. When I asked if papa should read it she said, "No. I do it." And proceeded to read to us in Emglish by turning the pages and saying "(some kind of babble that had a good cadence and then) Ha-old purpa cayon." because it was Harold and the Purple Crayon.

It was very exciting.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Me, Carolina

Just about last Wednesday or Tgursday, Carolina said her own name in response to the question "what's your name."

In the following days, she's embraced this identification and even is Introducing herself to kids at the park. Now, of course, she's not saying her name like we do. She says "Cah-leena", which is good enough.

This weekend she even did a Me-Tarzan-You-Jane intro to a newly-walking baby by putting her hand on her chest and said, "Cahleena", "Hi baby" and then pointing to me says, "Mommy. Mine."

It was very cute.

She's also started to tell me, "Cahleena. Pincess." I have NO idea where this is from but it cracks me up and sure, you're a princess.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Tried church again, not that interested

We took Carolina to mass this morning. She was not interestedin going into the church. So while her papa went to sit inside, she and I stayed in the foyer and looked at the Virgin Mary statue while listening to the singing. After the singing was over, she said "mas!"

I explained there would be more singing after the priest was done talking, but that took too long for her. We said a few prayers to Mary and "lit" an electric candle.

Since she was flatly, and loudly, refusing to go sit inside (even though there are "new chairs. Big chairs!"), we left to go to the park.

All better.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Two episodes of crying -- but not what you'd think

First, we went for a walk after her afternoon nap and lunch. It was about 5pm and overcast so we just went to walk around the surrounding blocks. When we got to 46th Street, we heard some drums and I thought it sounded (correctly) like a marching band. We ran down towards where the sound was coming from and lo and behold a young drum corp was coming down the street.

Carolina was delighted and so we waved and walked along the remaining portion of the "parade route". It wasn't much of a parade but something to do with Jesus on the cross and stopping at the local Episcopal church. The drum corp had about 20 members and they were all between the ages of 8 and 12. They were pretty good, and Carolina kept saying "mas! mas!" after each set.

When the playing was over and everyone was filing into the church entrance, Carolina started bawling. Hysterically. She was so loud, people a half a block away were looking our way. It was because the music stopped and there wasn't going to be more. She was so terribly disappointed that it took her 2 blocks to calm down. Poor musical kid.

Tonight she played her first video game with her Papa on the Wii: Super Mario Galaxy. She had such a good time that when Papa turned off the Wii, since it was bath time, she started crying. The kind of crying you might hear if she hurt herself and wasn't terribly injured but very "sentimental" (as my husband would say in Spanish).

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

First nap without a pacifier!!!

Totally unplanned, Carolina didn't ask me to get her "chupon" when we changed her into pjs for her nap, and I forgot to offer it.

She normally remembers after books, when I put her in the crib, but today she didn't. when I got her up she was very groggy and asked for it. But even then, just for a few minutes.

I seriously doubt this is a new trend, but at least I know this too has a shelf life.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Minnie Mouse plays with us

My sister got Carolina a large Minnie Mouse statue/piggy bank earlier this week. Carolina loved it so much, she carried it around with her for a bit (it's pretty heavy) and then while we were playing with some wooden puzzles -- the kind that have spaces to put wooden shape pieces to complete the puzzle -- Carolina decided that Minnie would help us. So she had Minnie sit RIGHT NEXT to her and talked to Minnie the whole time.

"Minnie hep?" (Minnie will you help?)
"Minnie wheh iz ova? You find it" (Minnie where is the oval? Oh you found it!)

In fact, Minnie was so good at helping, I ended up asking Minnie if she could do the hard ones that Carolina had previously had trouble with -- and she could!

It was great to see Carolina doing more complex things when she thought she was helping Minnie play with us. I don't know what to make of it but it was fun.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Mama, poop!

Now I realize this isn't the first time she's alerted me to a poop she's done shortly after she's done it, but today was different.

We were at the park and she was playing in the dirt with a stick ("draw-en mama!") and I was sitting on a nearby bench. After about 5 minutes she walks over to me and says "Poop. Mama, poop!" So I said, "Ok, let me check." She walks closer and leans a bit forward (so I can look at her diaper) and I say, "yes! let's change you."

"Ok, mommy. Change you." And walked over to the stroller bag where she knew the mini diaper bag was. We changed her and I told her I was very proud of her for telling me right away. She looked very proud.

She did this with the babysitter yesterday, too. If she keeps this up, we can start potty training. This and getting her to sit on the potty without being afraid of it. All in good time...

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

More please!

Just yesterday, for the first time, Carolina exclaimed happily "More, please!"

It was just after her nap and as part of her post-nap meal, which is like 1/2 lunch, I gave her a little bowl of chocolate Lactaid ice cream. She had a wee bit of trouble spooning it up but mostly got the hang of it, and was clearly getting VERY COLD. I figured she'd be done after the bowl, but lo and behold when the last spoonful went it she said (very clearly), "Mo please!"

So I gave her another half a bowl, which she didn't quite finish but was delighted to have it as part of her 'lunch'.

Later that afternoon, while we were at the park, she was going up to different kids and saying, "Hi!" Sometimes she'd also point to me and say something that was mostly indecipherable but included "Mama" or "Mommy" -- as in, that's my mom over there. By introducing herself to other kids she ended up playing with an older girl, who is about 8 and lives in the building next to ours. The girl was swinging Carolina very high on the swing and Carolina was laughing and screaming with the utmost delight. I was listening carefully for any signs or sounds of fear (as I was very nervous) but she was more than fine. She even learned how to say "More high! More high!" to go higher in the swing.

She was also very disappointed when the little girl had to go home with her mother. She looked at me and said "Mo girl! Mo kids!" I had to explain that the little girl had to go with her Mommy, to which Carolina looked at me and said quite emphatically, "No home mommy. No home. Mas! Mas!"

So I pushed her a while longer but it wasn't the same.

We had been at the park for over an hour and a half yesterday, and last night she was exhausted and slept well.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

No no blah blah blah

This week she's started saying "No [whatever the last thing you just said]."

So, yesterday's examples:
Do you want to go to the park? No park.
Let's brush our teeth. No brusha teeth.
Want some dinner? No dinner.
Let's go upstairs. No uh-tairs.
Want to watch Caillou? No caillou.
Come on, walk up the stairs. No wahk uh-tairs.
Say hi to papa (on the phone). No papa phone.

This is all followed up by possibly doing the thing she just adamantly said "No" to, or could be followed up with stamping of feet and crying or whining.

She's even said "No cake". But I still think that was a mistake. She never turns down cake. At least only when there are new toys and a friend to play with, then she MIGHT say no and mean it.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Nap time? No, singing time!

Today, Carolina decided that it wasn't QUITE nap time -- even though she was tired. So after reading a few stories, while she mostly jumped on the bed while I read, she laid down with her baby doll in the crib and I walked out.

I then hear her little voice, pretty loudly, singing:
Fee-fi fiddly-i-oh, fee-fi fiddly-i oooohhh (repeat)

As that was the song we were singing together when I was changing her into her pajamas for nap.

Then after a few renditions, she fell asleep.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Going to church is only good for 20 minutes

I took Carolina to morning mass today so I could do what I normally find pointless: pray.

When I feel lost or just want to give thanks, I pray. When I feel badly, I actually go to church. Makes me a hypocrite based on my beliefs, but I can deal with that. I needed closure and that's where I made my closure last time.

So we went to a local chuch that I've not been to before. It was pretty full for a 9am mass, and expectedly with older/elderly churchgoers. (The other local church has a lot of children as part of the parish.) so there wasn't much tolerance for Carolina talking. Granted, she was almost silent for about 15 minutes and then started whispering where "Jesus' mommy" was and that the stained glass windows had flowers.

It was after some shushing from the old lady in front and then Carolina cry/whining when she gave the dollar donation to the guy who passed the basket for the collection. She liked giving him the dollar but then wanted it back, or another dollar. As if it was a game. Before she got loud, we went out into the entry foyer. Looked at the flowers and votives by "Jesus' mommy" statue. Then went to the store and home.

It worked out pretty well as it started raining when we left, and got home before it picked up.

We will go again, this next time we will sit near the "Jesus' mommy" window with "baby Jesus" and "moon moon". That should give me an extra 5 minutes of entertainment.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

A fun day at the zoo and eating blueberries herself

Since Papa had to go to the office to get the mini harddrive her forgot on Friday night, we decided to all go to the Central Park Zoo this morning (sort of near his office). The Children's Zoo isn't a petting zoo as I recall it being years ago but Carolina had a great time at both zoos nonetheless.

She looked very serious in all the photos but in fact had fun. She had her "I'm checking this out first" face on. Then we went home to nap as it was too warm for her to relax and nap outside.

Then, tonight, she fed herself two bowls of frozen blueberries. She's doing more and more self feeding. I've never discouraged her nor forced her to. I've just presented it and knew when she was ready, she would. I've often fed her still sincebits easier than clean up but now she's asserting herself. So she does her own cereal with milk, yogurt, and blueberries.

And she loves to drink from a real cup but that's mostly met with her wearing a good amount. We make do and the Nalgene sippy cup is great. So whenever that works out...

Same with potty training. She's not QUITE ready but I see signs that tell me we are getting closer. Again, no pressure. I don't mind diapers that much. Never really have. Even the super-pooper ones.

Friday, August 12, 2011

More dancing and a miscarriage

August 12

Well the miscarriage is over. It was much less painful and strange than the first one. 

Having Carolina to care for has been good as I'm mostly too busy and distracted playing and caring for her to focus on me. 

I think, when she's asleep for the night, I'll have a good cry and then be done with it. 

Here's to my tiny (ballerina) dancer keeping mommy focused on what's important. 

Fun story: the other day we walked by a local ballet dance studio and a class was in session. I stopped the stroller and told Carolina what it was. She could only see the tops of their bodies practicing as there was a half wall at the entrance blocking her view. 

She was enthralled and had a very serious look on her face. When I asked if she wanted To go home  she shook her head "no". I asked if she wanted to go into the class, again almost solemnly, shook her head but this time with a "yes".

I explained that the class was for adults and she could go when she was a little bigger. She started to cry. I only see ballet or dance classes for age 3+. She's still too young to follow direction even if she's interested, agile and coordinated. 

Maybe next year, if the interest is still there, she actually will be our tiny dancer. 

Being pregnant with a toddler

August 9

So far, it's been very strange. I thought I lost it a few weeks ago but here I am still pregnant. I think I'm going to miscarry this one, it just doesn't feel "right", and I've had intermittent bleeding and cramps/pain over the last 3 weeks. But we'll see.

I've not had any morning sickness; no nausea. It's like my first preganancy in that way. Hungry but no suffering. When I was pregnant with Carolina, I was nauseus and throwing up every day for almost 6 months. It was a relief and a reminder that *this* baby was serious and she meant business to stick around.

I've been exhausted and have almost zero interest in walking all the way to the park, especially in the high heat and humidity we've had recently. So I've taken her to her friends' places or other places indoors with air conditioning.

Gratefully, Carolina has mostly been a very good girl and Ismael has not complained when I screwed up a few dinners. I just don't have the energy or interest in cooking after Carolina is asleep -- although I'm eating every two hours since I'm hungry all the time.

I've mentally prepared myself to lose this pregnancy, just in case. And I'm pretty much okay with it if it happens. And if we never have another child, I'm okay with that too. My kid is pretty great. We'd like to have another but things have been challenging recently and so we'll just have to take it as it comes and see what happens.

If I lose it, I'll get to have sushi this fall. If I get to keep it, then we'll have sushi in about two years. Either way, we'll have sushi! (For those of you who remember my sushi obsession while pregnant with Carolina will truly understand what I'm talking about.)

A second miscarriage, I think

July 18

As our trying for another child starts, I'm pretty sure I was pregnant for about a week or two. I had some pretty clear body signs and then got my period very early, with some pain. And now I don't feel pregnant anymore. Likely was miscarriage #2. It was very early and so I can't know for certain but I was pretty sure.

It was very disappointing. At least I know the parts still work over 35. Guess we will give it a rest for a month and then try again.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

This was absolutely true for me. In case someone else reads this and this article is helpful.

Dr. Heather (@BabyShrink):
Trouble breastfeeding may be a tip-off to postpartum depression, study says: #parenting

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Good days and less good days but mostly fun

I have to say, having a two-year-old in the house can be amazingly fun and amazingly tiring. Today, for example, was great.

I figured she'd be climbing up the walls by this afternoon as it was too hot and humid to go to the park this morning and rained all afternoon, but she wasn't. She was pretty content, and we had a good time coloring, dancing and playing.

Her favorite new thing is to dance like a ballerina and tell me, "Look Mommy! Angenina!" For Angelina Ballerina, a cartoon she likes. (I don't really like it very much since I find the voices annoying but we watch it sometimes just for a change of pace.) I've taught her what I remember from ballet classes I took when I was little and she finds it hilarious that we dance together like so.

When she gets a little older, and if she still likes to dance, I'll sign her up for a dance class.

A new-to-us book we got from the library recently is "Stick" by Steve Breen. It's great because it's not very long and there aren't many words. (I basically make up sounds for each frame where there aren't any words on the page.) The illustrations are very nice and there's a map of Stick's journey on the inside covers. Stick is a "baby fog" (baby frog) who likes to do things on his own and has an adventure around the New Orleans bayou area when he tries to eat a fly and gets stuck on a dragonfly. I really like New Orleans, and so that makes me happy to get to read it to her repeatedly when she asks.

I had to do some hunting for a hardcover copy of it, and finally found one (an ex-library copy) on Here's the link in case anyone else wants one:*edition*buyused

I wanted to make sure that we had a copy with the map on the inside covers since Carolina and I talk about the journey using the map. I wasn't sure if the paperback one they had on Amazon and had it.

Anyway, if you have a 18 month or older kid, and that kid likes animals -- I have a feeling that kid will like Stick:

Another current favorite is anything with Madeline in it, and Chicken Soup With Rice. Madeline is "Mad-eh-mine". She likes the first Madeline book best and we've read others. She even read enough during the Queens Library summer reading program that she earned a 'free dessert' from Applebee's. Of course we have to buy an adult entree, but it'll be fun to take her since she likes the little card they gave her with the 5 stamps on it saying she read 5 books.

Honestly, it's probably more that the card came in a little orange-plastic cover, and she can slide the card into and out of it.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Another successful journey with the tiny dancer

She was good on the Amtrak train for 3 hours to BWI and fantastic on the way home. She enjoyed, immensely, playing with her cousins. I was grateful they wore her out as all but one night she went to sleep like a log. And, gratefully, she got enough good naps in that was wasn't super whiny or aggressive.

We went to the Air & Space museum out by Dulles. It was great as I got to hear, "Ay-pane!" very excitedly. A lot. And then "ah-na-naught" when we got to the space section. Her cousin bought her this lights/vibrating wand that she adores. As ge told us in the car, shortly after Carolina started to nod off, "you should make sure to let her use it. It helps her sleep." ha!

I've noticed as she gets older, tired becomes more about whining and physical aggressiveness. And that's when I hear a lot of "No, mine!" which is actually funny to me. I try not to laugh because she's asserting her independence and I need to balance that with calm/polite behavior -- but she's still so young that I find it a bit amusing.

It seems her aunts and uncles were happy to have us visit, too.

So we can now add napping on a train to the list of transportation methods she's willing to tolerate. Next we should add a boat. Except mommy doesn't like boats. Especially with a two year old.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Instead of "OK", we got a "Yes"

Just arrived off the Amtrak train to visit my family in Maryland and got into my cousin's car with my aunt and cousin.

 Once we arrived at her house, my aunt turned to Carolina and said, "Did you have a good time on the train?" Clear as day, and without hesitation Carolina said, "Yes!"

I was stunned. She didn't say "Okay" or just smile, like usual. Or even "Yeah"; she said, "Yes."


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

And the next day all's well

After a good night's rest, the little monkey was back to her happy self and had a good day. Had a good nap and a good day the following day.

Ahhhh, happy sleep. Good naps for the under 4 crowd can't be overstated.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Nap Protesting

In the past few weeks, maybe a month, naptime has gone from a nearly reliable tradition where I put her down and more or less she sleeps for two hours (or more), to spending time going in once or twice (mostly to make sure she's not up calling for me because she pooped) before she sleeps.

Today is perhaps the worst it's been so far. I'm grateful she doesn't have a bed as she would most certainly be at her door knocking on it while calling for me or playing with whatever she could find in there. Instead of resting.

She's started to buck against sleep at night too. Not just the head banging and body rocking, yes that's still going on to some degree, but she objects to sleep. I know full well thus is that age. I fluctuate between going in to get her to sleep and ignoring her. I'm not sure what tactic is best but I'm trying to be reasonable while also trying to get her to sort it out on her own in there.

Trying is the operative word as I'm not sure if what I'm doing is helping, hurting, or simply following along this new path.

It's been just over an hour and she's still calling out for me in increasingly whiny and tired tones.

And today is very hot and humid out, so as we are probably apartment-bound this afternoon, should be a major pain if she's refused a nap today. That doesn't happen very often, but it does happen.

Hilariously, there's a kid outside our building about her age having a total meltdown. She's calling out to him from her room. The chorus of the over-tired toddlers in joint protest.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Things this kid says...

Each week Carolina seems to be talking more and more. Her sentences are now up to three words long and her speech is more and more clear.

Here are a few of the "big sentences" she's using regularly within the last two weeks:

1. "I deh eht" (I did it)
2. "Lookah mee" (Look at me)
3. "I findet" (I found it)
4. "Iz mine" (It's mine)
5. "Luvuu mahmee" (I love you, Mommy) *easily my new favorite and usually said just after "goo-nigh momee" before I close the door for the night at bedtime.

I'm just waiting for the "Give it to me, no, it's mine, I don't want to share" sentence that's looming in the near future when she gets more complex and self-aware. Should be fun :)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Good night, Mommy

After I tucked her in and kissed her good night, and then said good night to both Carolina and "Baby", I usually just walk out. Tonight, as I walk toward the door I hear, "Goo nigh mommy." I said, "Good night my baby" and walked out.

Now how sweet is that for the first time, saying good night?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Baby wants ice cream and a trip to the beach

Two good stories from this week

First was about two days ago while we were on the swings at the park. Carolina pointed to a bigger girl on one of the big kid swings with an ice cream cone and says, "Eyez keem!" I say, "Yes, the kid has ice cream." 

"Eyez keem! Eyez keem!" 
"Yes, Carolina, the girl has ice cream."
She then points to herself and says emphatically, "Eyez keem. Baby eyez keem!" (I often tell her that she's a big girl now but still my baby.)

I couldn't help but laugh and explained no ice cream today. 

The second story is about a postcard she received from her godmother, Maria. 

While looking at the postcard photo of the beach at early morning, she points to it and goes "Rea!" 

"Yes, the postcard is from Aunt Maria. She's at the beach with Tommy and Marisa."

"Rea. Beach."

The she turns it over and over, looking a little confused. "Rea? Tah-mee?"

After a few seconds thinking this over I say, "oh! It's a postcard but Maria isn't in the photo."

"Ok. Beach?"
"Yes. It's a postcard of the beach. Do you want to go to the beach?"
"Ok. Beach. Aqua. Ok!"

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

First pee pee in the potty

This past Sunday night, just before her bath, Ismael got Carolina to pee in the potty. A real pee!

She was a little freaked out about how happy we were, and I've heard of other kids about her age getting nervous/worried/scared that something just came out of them and there it is!

Well, we were delighted. I have no idea if this is going to be a regular occurrence or just one of many small steps towards pee-pee-dom. Whatever it is, we were proud!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

First Spanish sentence

In preparation for going to the park today, Carolina decided she MUST have her monkey leash and walk "Mano Mano" with me. Even though she normally is excited to ride in her stroller.

I objected since I had to bring the stroller anyway, knowing full well that she'd tire en route and want a ride. It's tricky getting her, the stroller and holding her hand all down the stairs and outvote building.

But after I said, "but you like the stroller." she cried out and then calmly asked, "Te lo pongo?" which is what ismael says to her when he is going to put something on her. I'll put it on you.

I said, "Wait. What?"

She repeated, "Te lo pongo" as if it was one word.

I was so impressed, we figured out a way she could walk with the monkey, holding my hand, while I pushed the stroller too. And lo, after half a block of walking nicely Mano-Mano, she decided riding in the stroller was better on this very hot day.


Monday, June 27, 2011

Bye bye dirty!

I must share this.

Yesterday, my husband shaved off his beard. To avoid any possible confusion or being upset from Carolina, we encouraged her to watch. She wasn't interested. I'd bring her in after he'd finish a large section. When he was mostly done, I brought her over to see. Ismael turns to look at her, she ponints to him very matter of factly and says, "doity."

"Dirty? What's dirty?"

Then points to his face again and says "Bye bye doity". And then runs off.

Awesome. The beard was dirty. Ha. Love it.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Orange fish is doity

She's really beginning to pretend play. Changing her baby doll's "diaper" and "eating" what she makes in her play kitchen. 

She believes that something gross is called "ew" because that's what I say. And anything that's dirt, dirty or on the floor is "doity". "Faht" is fart and still funny. 

In fact, yesterday she told me "papa faht" right after she farted, and then giggled. 

We went to visit the local fish pond which is just a small 2 foot "pool" of water outside one of the local coop buildings. They have the best Halloween and Christmas decorations, too. Always worth a visit. So once there she tells me "oh-anj fee-sh doity".  I couldn't figure out what was dirty. Then I looked where she was pointing. At the area next to the "pond" are flowers planted in the ground. Dirt. She was telling me that the dirt is doity. True!

Monday, June 20, 2011

No bottle and a great day

So it's been two nights without a bottle and it's going well. Some protesting but as I left the bottle at my parents place by accident, I feel more confident saying Sorry it's not here. She's not a fan of milk but she's coming around to drinking it.

We had a great day. Over an hour at the park this morning, not too hot outside. A lovely nap and then a good lunch of polenta, beef and cheese. Then the afternoon at Bryant Park's carousel (4 rides @$2 a pop!) and then reading outside in the park on mini chairs and mini tables as part of NYPL's kid's Reading Room. Sponsored by Scholastic (eyes rolling), but still a very cool idea and was appreciated!!

Now I have a worn out toddler and we are both very happy. Hooray!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

No touch, doity

I hear it's the same with other 2 year olds in other states, around now they develop a Jersey/Brooklyn kind of accent on some words. Of course, it's no accent, their mouths are trying to say the new words and it comes out sounding a bit funny. Here are a few of my new favorites, with and without Jersey accent.

1. Doity (Dirty)
2. Peen-uh (Clean up)
3. Tank ooh mama (Thank you, Mama)
4. Tunna (Tunnel)
5. Toi-tul (Turtle)

And my favorite conversation from this week, so far:
C: Hahaha. Poop! (pointing to her diaper/butt)
Me: No, not poop, fart. you did a fart!
C: Poop! Poop! (extra emphasis pointing)
Me: No, it's a fart. Fart! Air comes out of the same place as poop but without the poop. It's a fart.
C: Poop. (pointing at me)
Me: Ok, sure, poop.

She's decided that the potty isn't scary and tries it out 1-2 times a day. Sometimes with all her clothes on and sometimes with clothes and diaper off. She might sit for a few seconds or a few minutes while reading. Who can say? It hasn't involved actual pee or poop in the potty yet but she's making progress. At least her baby dolls know that's where you have to go as she puts one of them on there and tells it to "poop!"

Final thoughts of the day:
In summation of the last few months of looking in the 3 favorite boroughs and NJ: If the homes (apartments or houses) are cheap, the schools are bad. If the home is near public transportation, the schools are bad. If there's little to no public transportation, the schools are excellent. If you're in NJ and your commute time to Manhattan is less than an hour, the schools are middling to bad.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Poop? No.

This is an actual excerpt from a conversation this morning.

(Carolina & Ismael in the kitchen eating breakfast, I walk in from the other room just started vacuuming.)

Me: Whoa, it smells like poop in here!
Is: I don't smell anything
Me: When she's done eating, I'll change her.
(She then stopped eating and came into the living room. I smelled her butt.)
Me: Whoa! Yup, that's a big one!
(Change her and yes, it was a mess)
Is: I really didn't smell anything. I guess since I was in the room with her when she... well, she did take the "poop position" in the other room just before I brought her into the kitchen to eat. Maybe she did it then?
Me: That must have been why it was everywhere.
Is: Well, I asked her if she pooped and she said "No".
Me: Hahaha, she's two! She says "no" to a lot of things.

Lesson for my husband: When a two year old tells you "no" after you asked her if she's pooped, check the butt anyway.


2nd year checkup

34" /86cm (43 percentile)
22lbs 6oz /10.1 kg (4 percentile)

She's a bit taller than usual but her weight is steady and on the same track she's been since she was born.

Got a shot and blood taken. THAT was fun, and she still has the bruise from where she tried to pull her arm away while the needle went in. Except for that screaming/crying at the end, she did very well.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A second birthday

Well her second birthday came and went. I think the crayons, Mr Potato Head, a Tinkerbell personal fan, and a Minnie dress were a big hit. She's worn that dress two days in a row! And yesterday was hot -- didn't matter she wanted it "off", which meant "on".

She's talking a lot more and more clearly. "Doe" for "Dora" is now "Doe-ah". She says "Dank you Papa" and "shooz". Shoes are both socks and shoes. "Ay-toe" is Mr Potato Head and "book" (with an extra emphasis on the "k") is book. "Gah-sez" are glasses.

She's wearing the mardi gras necklaces and bracelets from Kari a lot. Basically she really liked her party and had a good time.

We all slept in the next day until 8.30am when we heard "Mah-MA!!!" from the other room.

In fact, this morning she didn't call out until about 7.15am but had clearly been awake for a little while. She told me what she had been practicing by immediately showing me and saying "Elmo, noz" and pointing to his nose. Then "Icky noz", "iglit noz" and "baby noz" for Mickey, piglet and her baby.

She has a few dolls called "Baby" and since we returned from Mexico they're all pronounced "Bay-beh" instead of "Bay-bee". Very cute. 

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Less impressed, more ooh!

Since the early, sound, deep nap happened again today, I realized it wasn't maturation but baby allergy medicine. She's got a cough and sneezing. I bought generic baby allergy relief to help with the symptoms and it's knocking her out!

I now understand why my sister-in-law gives our niece some Dramamine before a long car ride. Knocks the kid out for quieter travel.

Since the allergies aren't THAT bad, I'll back off the full dose. I feel badly making her wonky. Although it is a little bit of a relief to see her able to sleep so soundly in the car.

Ah well...

Friday, May 20, 2011

I am super IMpressed

Two firsts in travel and sleep today.

First, she took over an hour nap in the car two HOURS before her normally scheduled nap.  normally she waits until she's overtired to pass out on any car ride and secondly she never sleeps more than an hour in the car. And what's more, she was very well behaved in the car during the four hour ride. (I guess either she's adapted to all the travel we did in Mexico and/or she's matured a little in the meantime.)

Second, she was very tired by 7pm. So we left my aunt's house and drove to my cousin's (where we were going to spend the night). Right to a bath and then bottle and bed. She asked for the bath and bed. She didn't try to stay up longer or watch tv and went right to sleep with minimal head banging. And shortly after 8pm. 

Like I imagine a bigger kid might do. This may be a one off -- and I'll take it. Super impressed. A very good and flexible kid today. Made the car journey and day go much nicer all around. 

Saturday, May 14, 2011

It takes one day to adjust

So after many short trips and the big one back home, we have figured out it takes Carolina one day to adjust. The first day back she was irritable and fussy. Out of sorts. The next day she rested and was more herself. She's still a little off but then she's not settled back into any kind of routine since we've done something different every day.

Looking at apartments and meeting up with some friends at the High Line.

Since I can't know when a new change is coming because she's getting older vs a temporary change because she's not well or something's up. I feel frustrated (and depending on how long it goes on for) a bit of a cockup until I figure it out. My in-laws have a different approach: If there's nothing obviously wrong and she's not sick, just ignore it. It'll pass. This is totally not me and it's probably how they raised so many children.

Don't try to figure it out; just roll.

I can't. I gotta know. Like the head banging and body rocking. I need to figure out why and help her stop. It was pretty exhausting the whole month. Made me wonder if I can handle a second one. And then most of the time I was bummed out I wasn't pregnant already.

I think C will make a great big sister.

In the meantime, as soon as I get the baby potty I ordered from my parents place, we are going to start a laisse faire approach to potty training.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Packing to go home. Are we ready?

Well, yes, for the most part we are all looking forward to our own beds and some sleep. We will probably all miss not having friends and family close by. People we like to see most days of the week. It's what Papa misses most about living in Mexico:

Calling a friend: You around? Great. See you in 10 mins.

Can't do that in New York. Everyone is always so busy you have to schedule something a week or few in advance. And all our closest friends live at least 30-45 mins away. When at home that sounds fine and normal. Here, it sound ludicrous. Of course Celaya isn't NYC. And that's why I want to go home.

Miss C has been having a lot of travel to deal with. Mostly it's fine but then we get the occasional "too many changes at once mommy!" trip. Our first night in Leon she REFUSED to go to bed. She was up, an hour after me, until midnight. And then woke up at 6.30/7am.

Different house, different crib, no curtains on the windows, no door. Too much activity for my curious babe to be able to resist. Next afternoon she passed put in the car. So we drove around for an hour until she woke up. Figured she needed SOME sleep. Ha. Mommy and Papa needed more...

I think she is going to miss her Abuelos. In particular her Abuela. They had a very good day together a few weeks ago when we both went out during the day. She asks for Abuela in the morning and Abuela is always around. Ah well...

Friday, May 6, 2011

Went to the DF... there were no naps and a stomach bug

Three days in Mexico City and I got a stomach bug while Miss C just had one 1-hour nap on day two. It was a good visit overall. We stayed at a really nice hotel, Hotel Nikko Mexico. A Japanese/JAL chain. Went to Chapultapec park and then Zocolo the next day. It was short not just because of it being only 3 days but my stomach bug cut the last morning short. We didn't go see the ruins just outside the city. Next time...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Pretty sure she thinks we live here now

We were at the hotel in Guanajuato, Quinta Las Acacias, and it was nice and is very well designed.

While C was taking a bath she asked for her towel. Her new way of telling me she's done. And I brought over one of their luxe white towels to the jacuzzi where C was. She insisted no, she wanted her blue towel. My surfeit have blue towels in the bathroom we use at the house. "Nooo. Blue! Tau-wul, bluuuu" No, there's only white towels here. Bluuuuuu.

Eventually she got out and we used the white towel.

Then she started to ask for Abuela. Then David. Then Papa and Abuelo. Abuela and Papa a few times. Is was taking photos outside and we were at the hotel. Not Celaya.

I'm not sure if these little trips are a good idea or not. Or if it matters either way. But there's something about the way she's adapted that makes me think she believes we live here now.

I think she's going to be bored and sad when we first go home. Or maybe she will love her bed and be ok. I've no idea. It'll be interesting.

If I had pursued and taken that college job in Korea, she would have adapted to being a little Korean kid pretty quickly. Faster than us, I can tell. Maybe we should have done that.

I'm reading The Help and it's very good. Thanks, Jee, for the recommendation.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

That's not a California roll, that's not even seen a picture of California!

Yesterday we had "sushi" at a family party. I was excited at this prospect until I remembered where we are. The "Bajio" of Mexico doesn't know sushi and, apparently, thinks California Rolls have cream cheese as an intrinsic ingredient. The rice is always standard rice, not shortgrain sushi rice --and cold. And often missing lovely, crispy seaweed on the rolls.

Anyway, it was mostly fun day. Carolina very much enjoyed the pool, a late nap, and then a water table game when she decided the game should be to soak herself instead of moving the little boat around the "pool table". No matter, there were more clean clothes to change into.

So first week we are back, I'm getting some halfway decent sushi to make up for the cream cheese roll with avocado, fake crab and a TON of rice. :) Snob? Me? Never!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Eating better, feeling better

So I've only time for a short post. Little Miss C is doing better. She will finish her antibiotics run on Monday and it's already proving to be worthwhile. It's an absolute "friega" to prepare and dispense. Why on earth they give it to you dry powder to boil water and prepare, and then the dispenser dropper is an absolute pain (actually hurts to use it unless you're wicked strong). But, and this is a huge but, she's not had any side effects like the last time she had two different antibiotics at home.

It may be that last time she was given penicillin first and we now know she's allergic. And she's older, bigger and heavier. Not sure. This one, klaricid, isn't available stateside. Ah well...

We are going to "the ranch" this afternoon, after naptime, to meet up with Ismael's college friends. Tomorrow is the same location for a Perez family meal. Then some other family meal on friday at the house. Then something family on Saturday at the house or his grandmothers, then Easter Sunday somewhere with the orozco families.

I don't have enough dressy clothes to wear something different each day for me nor carolina, but we will make do.

PS I'm still reading this and I HIGHLY recommend it: Water for Elephants

Monday, April 18, 2011

Still sick and an attempt at a day out

Yesterday the family decided to go to Cañada de la Virgen just outside of San Miguel de Allende. It's about an hour away by car. Carolina had been up most of the night starting about 1.30/2am. Three bottles of milk and finally asleep about 5am, we get up at 8.30am.

I mention I'm exhausted and could we not go today. I'll stay home with Carolina so we can nap. Well ismael really wanted to go, so I changed my mind. Bad idea.

We get there at about 11.30. For those of you playing at home, her usual nap time is 12pm. Park. Find out we have to take a minibus the last 8km and then walk 1km to get to the archeology site. I look at ismael and say this is a bad idea. He says it'll be fine.

They buy the bus tickets, we get on line and my little super whiner started wailing. Tired, clearly, but completely inconsolable. So loud in fact, she made it nearly impossible for the bus passengers to hear the guide. We got off the bus. We went home.

She didn't fall asleep in the car and, like the last 5 days, refused to eat much of anything.

She and I slept for 2.5 hours once home. After another bottle. God that was luscious sleep.
Ismael swam 1km in the pool. Clearly he's better on little sleep than me or a baby.

Speaking of whining, and I know she's on antibiotics so not herself, but the Terrible Twos are here. NO is her second favorite word after OK. I'm sure NO will be #1 soon enough. And man is she picky with food. I'm still holding out hope it gets a little better after the infection goes away. But I don't fight her. Much. Which means she's not been eating much and I refuse to increase the number of bottles a day to compensate. Yesterday was a fluke.

And she doesn't seem to be starving either. I've kept formula in lieu of milk since it doesn't give her a bad tummy or gas AND it has more vitamins and minerals than milk alone.

But I'm getting sick of making her a bottle. She's old enough to kick the habit. Once these last 3-4 molars come in, I'm done.

I'm not sure it's 3 or 4 since when I try to put my finger in there to check, she bites down like the dickens and I can't feel anything but screaming pain in my finger.

Friday, April 15, 2011

A throat infection

Yup she's sick. Brought her to the dr here and she's got a bacterial infection in her throat.

She's been not eating much, waking up early, being whiny and crying a lot. But still trying to be pleasant, really. Thank god for nap time!

It's some Dolores day thing here so we are about to go to the great-grandmothers house to eat "paletas" (ice cream pops) and something about visiting religious altars at people's homes. Yea Spain and Catholicism!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Up all night? It's a cold.

Putting together very obvious clues, slowly, made me wonder how I got this far as a mother. It was all so obvious and yet I was confused until this morning that Carolina has a cold.

She's felt warm to me for two days and was REALLY whiny yesterday. But it wasn't until she didn't sleep most of the night and banged her head against the crib mattress that I knew something was up. She sounded like she was having trouble breathing but not too badly. Finally this morning I took her temperature and it was shy of 102 degrees. Not a fever exactly but not well either.

Her nose has been very runny today and her appetite has decreased. I know it's teeth. This "cold" I've seen before.

Her last front, bottom canine tooth broke through two days ago and this might be the result of the last set of molars. She has the bottom two threatening to break through but still haven't.

I was at least prepared with her thermometer, vicks vapor rub, Tylenol and nose aspirator thingy.

We are going to Tia Gaby's for lunch after her nap. Ah, her nap that started with intense screaming when I put her in the bath to wash out the sand. I've no idea why she did but ismael could hear it three floors down and across the pool. Even with the ocean being "loud" today. Yup.

Still, though, she had a fun morning on the beach.

Tomorrow we leave the beach very early and head back. 8 hours in the car. Yup yup yup.

Monday, April 11, 2011

For the most part

She's been sleeping well through the nights, napping regularly and having a hell of a good time with her cousin. Yesterday was a red letter afternoon with an hour in the kids' pool with Papa, Angela and about 20 other children. 

As I said before, a new set of phrases has become the all-telling sign that Carolina is done with whatever is happening and ready to either leave or move on. We get, now, the extended, "Okaaay. Aw-wight. Les Gooo. Come ooon."

It's me, well, my words, but smaller and with a higher-pitched voice. I've rarely felt so completely self-conscious of what I say. The last time was grad school when we were doing presentations in front of nearly every class. I'm sure this feeling will either become heightened as she learns more or less as I get used to it and don't care. 

Sorry for the delay on posting. We've not had the Internet for two days. Something about the router not working well enough. More in a few days!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Early mornings

Waking up at 5am in LA was just barely enough time to get ready and on a 7.20am flight to Mexico. Good that there was virtually no one at the airport. 

I now understand why the Aeromexico flights were so cheap, they weren't even half full. Good for us. Carolina got her own seat and breakfast and napped for a bit before we landed at Mexico around midday. The connecting flight was fine. 

The flight into DF was illuminating:

Me: What's that black stuff in the clouds?
Is: smog
Me: Nooo...
Is: yes, smog
Me (for the remainder of the landing): Really? No. Wow. Oh my god. No.  Really? How do people live here?
Is: that's why I don't want to live here. 
Me: me either. 

Once we landed at Leon, Miss C took a much needed second nap and slept until we arrived at Abuelos' house. 

Up this morning at 6, and did it all over again. Trading two flights for an 8-hour car ride. 

4 hours into ride to Vallarta and Carolina starts to yell out, clearly, "Okaaay. Aw-wight! Leh-go!" she was ready to get out of the car. Ok, Alright, Let's go!

Arrived shortly after 4pm. Everyone went to the potty and then had a nice lunch. She actually ate lunch!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Disneyland, varied naps and another plane

So far Miss C has enjoyed her travels in LA, while her Aunt has been estatic to have us here. Disneyland was met with lots of happy smiles, gleeful squeals and a serious lack of a nap that also meant lots of crying and whining. There was an "emergency nap" taken for about 30 minutes just before 6pm.

It was actually funny since we just got on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, our last of the day. Carolina was between us and the ride is dark, cool and not very loud. We held her as the ride went down the water and did the roller coaster down part. She seemed to be a little afraid as she muzzled her head into Ismael's arm. BUT in fact she had fallen asleep. Slept the entire ride and then I carried her to the tram and then parking lot. It was cute. It was also unfortunate it wasn't 4 hours earlier. So we had an early night.

We get to wake up at 5am for a 7.30 flight to Mexico. I'm still wishing I had known we needed to go to Vallarta first. A much cheaper ticket and only 2.5 hours direct instead of the PITA flight to Guanajuato and then the 8+ hour car ride the next morning to Vallarta. Wish us all luck getting through that.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

2nd day with self nap & yesterday's haircut

For the second day in a row, Carolina has basically told me that she wants to put herself to sleep for her nap -- just like she does at night. Yeah! So we're back to her doing it herself, which is more than alright with me.

Yesterday, I took Carolina into the city for a haircut. Her first official, total head haircut. It went really, really well. They had a seat that was basically a cooper mini car she sat in and could 'drive' while watching Dora on the TV, and then there were bubbles.

They gave her a balloon and certificate with a lock of hair at the end. I even bought her a Chatter Telephone from Fisher Price that I've been meaning to get.

All in all it was worth the extra cost to keep her smiling and with a lovely new 'do. Importantly, her hair is now all less crazy looking than before. Phew!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Just when I think it's forever, it's going to change soon (again)

Just as I get really comfortable with always buying diapers and forgetting that she won't need them -- even though we have conversations about her going to potty train one day -- I finally realized she's going to be out of diapers sooner than I imagined.

I'm not going to get ahead of myself, and honestly I'm not really looking forward to it. I just know that she's starting to show signs of 'being ready' to start potty training. She tells me that she has to poop, sometimes. She shows me the ASL sign for changing diaper when she wants her diaper changed, even if it's a lot of pee. And I'm just impressed that this is happening, by her own momentum, at all.

Since we'll be away for 6 weeks, I've zero intention of starting to train her while not at home. But there is a potty at Abuela's house and maybe, if she shows interest and wakes up with a dry diaper, I'll start to put her on it and read her a book to see if she pees in there.

So far my entire knowledge about potty training is what few things my mom told me last week and something a friend told me last year.

As you all probably know, I can get too caught up in something if I get anxious. So, I'll get the potty training book from the library when we get home and listen to advice from other mothers while we are away. I'm certain there will be sufficient advice and tips that I may not even need a book. It really will depend on how my little munchkin takes to it and how ready she is when we get started.

Funnily enough, of all the things about being a new mom I never minded was changing diapers. I'd get tired of it some days and some poops were good enough to make me want to pass out, but honestly it was fine. I've always viewed it as a daily reminder(s) that she's healthy and everything is working -- or not.

Ok poop-tastic chat over!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A mini spa morning

Sometimes in order to distract her from wanting to watch TV and it's not nice enough to go outside, we have mini spa morning. We sit on the bed and I take off her socks. We take turns putting lotion on our feet and then using the nail file to file our Naipaul our hands. Sometimes she will take the nail fileand try to do her toes, too. It's very cute. Especially if I say "Wanna have a mini spa treatment on your feet? Lotion on your feet?" And she gets very excited and runs into my room and asks "Down? Down" which means she wants to get up on the bed and sit down.

Very sweet

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Two cute things from today

First, we were listening to music from iTunes on this computer and after each song Carolina would clap and say "bravo! bravo!". Really, she did.

Then tonight when I was holding her and humming so she'd relax. Wait, let me back up a minute. She woke up at 5am and then 6am, and has been teething a lot because a front canine and a back "2 year molar" are coming in at the same time. She's been very uncomfortable and sleeping through the night has been harder than usual. She napped for 3 hours today and then I woke her up -- she wasn't happy with me about that.

So I held her and hummed for longer than usual, to help her relax and maybe bang her head less. Well, after about 10 minutes she noticed I had my eyes open so she waved goodbye to me. I nodded, picked her up, brought her to the crib and kissed her. As I am putting her down into the crib she puts Elmo towards me, and I kiss him good night too. She seemed satisfied that I kissed them both good night.

Super, super cute!

And man, she's really talking more and more. More words, more sentences and I just can't wait to understand all of it. I also can't wait for all these teeth to come in. She seems to be really tortured by it, more than usual. I've seriously considered putting alcohol on her gums but I know that just gets her drunk and doesn't actually soothe the pain. I'm still mulling it over, depends on how badly this crying out at night gets.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

No becomes Yea

I remember my little sister saying 'yeah' a lot when she was around 2-3 years old. I would sometimes try to get her to say 'yes' but 'yeah' it was.

I'm proud to say that my little Miss C has moved from saying 'no' to things, even when she means 'yes', to 'yeah' sometimes.

Here's today's example:
This morning she asked to go "down" and pointed to the bed, which means go up on the bed. Once there she was jumping against the pillows. stopped. sat down. looked out the bedroom door into the living room and says "Doooo. Doo." I looked, expecting to see something Dora related but I couldn't see what she was pointing at. I said "do? do?" She smiles, points and says it loudly again.
I look again. Nothing makes sense to me.
I say "Carolina, I'm not sure what it is that you want. Can you show me?"
She just makes a frustrated noise and says the sound loudly again and points. I then say the noise to myself again and again and go. "OH! JUICE! You want the juice! I got it. Ok!"
She smiles, says "Yea!" laughs, says "Mama! Mama!" and claps her hands.

Hooray for Mommy for getting it right!

Very cute.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Counted to five all by herself, in Spanish

I forgot to mention in yesterday's post that little Miss C surprised me in the morning by counting to five in Spanish on her own.

We weren't talking about numbers, even. She was babbling and then said "Uno?" so I repeated "uno". She then continues and I repeat after her: "dos", "tre", "quatra", "quatro".

Now I realize she didn't say "cinco" but she got the idea. So we can say she counted to four :)

Neat, right? I have zero idea when this kind of thing is normally supposed to happen, so I'll just assume she's smart and doing it in the normal range of things.

Like when she learns other words, she will do it one time with confidence and clarity and then that's it. It really is like her mind organizes the synapses for a moment, goes yup that's it, and then goes back to working on something else.

I know I could read a lot to figure it out but I'm trying to avoid obsessing. So I'll go without knowing and laugh more. Know less, laugh more. Seems to be working as Carolina and I have been having a grand ol time these past two weeks. Not every day but many big laugh moments. She has even had a bunch of playmates and was pleasant and fun and didn't get overly excited and start screaming or running around like, as my mother in law says about her, a baby on peyote.

Funnily enough she has been less interested in watching tv the last two days and wanted to play and read books more. Fine with me!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The first day without a nap

It's been an unusual day:
She's still teething, so multiple stinky poops are the norm and red cheeks. She is, also, incredibly pleasant and happy this week. Nice!

Today she didn't wake up until 8am, and that was only because I woke her. She did two poops (don't worry this is relevant) and ate a good snack of cheese, pear and small box of raisins. Then insisted on a bottle (formula, again relevant) and I put her down at about 1pm groggy.

For the next two hours, while I worked, she was intermittently chatting to herself and dolls and then quiet. So at 2.45pm I went in. The room stunk to high heaven. She was desperate for me to pick her up. She was adamant she didn't want me to lay her down for a diaper change even though she gave me the ASL sign for change diaper.

I took it off and she had a very definite rash in many places. It hurt her so much that when I took her to the sink to wash it off, she was nearly hysterical. I slathered on the diaper rash cream but she was still screaming and writhing. I got the diaper on and now it's lunch in front of Tinker Bell movie.

It was the dairy. Whenever she has had "too much" the poops got the vomit smell. Poor kid.

I feel horrible I didn't check on her earlier and yet she's fine. Clearly a little tired but really ok.

I hope it's an early night for her sake and she's healed by bathtime.

The poop burned! Good lord what a time being a little one can be.

PS Good thing she loves raisins. those and the blueberries are keeping her regular. And very, very happy.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

day care, montessori pre-school and new york city

Holy crap. I've started to research day care in the city (Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan) and also look into Montessori for pre-school for Miss C. I knew that private school, and a good one that is clean, structured, responsible and well, elite (even just a little elitist) was expensive. I knew that private school can be as much as $20,000 -- but day care starting at over $7,000 for two half days a week?

My jaw hit the floor. It hurt. I then looked at other schools. I started to look in NJ. Not much better.

I should get a friend who's in education in the city because this is overwhelming and expensive. And there are WAITING LISTS for day care!

Good lord... I need a drink :)

In other news, Miss C has been having trouble napping. The other day she slept for nearly 3 hours, but all the days before and after, starting last Thursday/Friday, she's only napping one hour and having a heck of a time relaxing to fall asleep. Even with a bottle.

I'm perplexed. Maybe it's a phase but I sense something is up. She is more huggy than usual, which is nice, but she's also really, really into me holding her around naptime. If she gets up and is tired, like today, I must hold her for nearly 30-45 minutes before she feels comfortable for me to change her back to her clothes and walk around.

I'll figure this out but right now I'm stumped. Night time sleep is fractured with head banging.

Maybe she's just not getting enough exercise these days since it's been so very cold, wet/snowy, and otherwise unsuitable to going outside for play. Maybe it's just that simple...

I have been enjoying reading At Home by Bill Bryson. If you like history, well Western and in particular English and American history and knowing about how people lived before, this is a good read. I love all the etymology about words. Love it! Plus I got it from the local library, which is always nice to borrow books as our personal library is busting at the seems and there's no room for more books. 

Sunday, January 30, 2011

20 months and it's getting interesting

The last month has been busy. I've gotten a bunch of colds and we went on vacation to visit the family in Vallarta. It was a lot of fun at the beach, and Carolina didn't seem to mind trading playing in the snow (she calls it "no") with sand. She and her cousin had a lot of fun together and it was nice to be away. The 2 hour plane delay home wasn't much fun but it was mostly fine since she got her own seat (hooray for missing passengers) and they gave everyone free DirecTV as compensation for the delay. She was EXHAUSTED once we got to my parents' place.

She made 'friends' at the hotel because she spent most of each meal at the restaurant running around all the tables like she was in a sprint race. I was glad there were other adults in the family to take turns :)

There wasn't much sleeping at night but there was a lot less headaches as she's able to handle being awake longer during the day without good naps for a week. We also visited friends in Houston and it was her first time sleeping on a blowup bed instead of a crib. Surprisingly went well, although I think more than 2 nights on that and it would have gotten a little tricky with the head banging since the 2nd night was more active than the first.

There's been a lot more "No!" going on in our home. Not snow but actually saying 'no', and belligerent protestation. I suppose that's how it goes as we get closer to 2-3 years old. I'm amused and frustrated by her looking at me, smiling broadly (not sinisterly) and continuing to do what I just said 'No' to. I don't know why I find it funny, but in a way I do, so it makes it hard to sound all stern. We did try a few time outs. It had some effect but really, if she doesn't get to go outside and work out the energy she's got, then 'no' or 'yes' are irrelevant.

It's nearly her naptime and I'm hoping to get some rest so I can finally kick this cold!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Smiling and laughing

The most wonderful thing has started to happen in the past 1-2 weeks; Carolina has begun to have an understanding of when something is funny on her own. I've noticed her watching Frosty and Tinkerbell, even Dora episodes she's seen before, and she smiles (a broad smile) when something funny or cute happens. Like, there's a new layer of understanding that's in her eyes that wasn't there before.

It's really, really cool. I guess as a mom I get to enjoy this new-found understanding as well as the tantrums and whining. I suppose this is what toddler-hood is all about.

A friend of ours recently had a baby girl, another friend had twins (a boy and a girl) and another friend has a baby girl that's going to turn one year old tomorrow. It's a very cool thing to see all these new babies in the world to join the ones that are already here. I just can't believe it's been a year for Chloe.  Time does fly...

Today, when Carolina woke up from her nap I could hear her chatting to herself and shortly after she woke I heard her say, repeatedly and very clearly, "Jee! Hannah! Jee! Hannah!" Jee is a friend of ours who visits to play with Carolina pretty much weekly, and Hannah is our babysitter who comes to sit for Carolina at least once a week. It was very cute and funny to hear her call out for them.

She's had a hard time napping and sleeping this week, on and off, and has been running a high temperature (not a fever) since her two canine teeth are coming in. Red cheeks and all. Poor kid. I'm not sure who will be happier when the rest of the remaining 6 teeth come in by the time she's about 2 years old -- me or Carolina!