Friday, February 25, 2011

2 year old and Hershey, PA equals wonderland

So how has the year of me been going? I guess good.  I'm trying not to always think of my basic needs last and that's a big step, I suppose.
I begged my husband for a quick weekend getaway a month ago.  I pretty much told him I'm going to snap.  We went to PA for the weekend.  It was short but it was much needed.  I didn't bring my computer.  I turned off my phone, ok I turned it on for a reason which I will explain later.
I'm just tired.  I'm constantly running around.  I'm constantly behind on some project or to do.  But you know what?  Year of me has been pushing me to stop thinking about everything that needs to get done and try to take a chill pill.
On the kid front, TG spent the entire trip in underpants and only had one accident which I blame on me.  DH says it ridiculous to blame myself but I am a mom and I suppose that's what I do.  It happened on the food court, which I suppose is a better place to have it happen.  The food court at Chocolate World where everyone around us had kids and were parents or grandparents.  Like a tag team, DH took care of the mess as I carried our daughter to the bathroom to wash up and change.
Later she said to me, "That's for diaper changes," as she pointed to the changing table in the restroom.  "I don't need a diaper change.  I wear underpants."  Right you are, child.
She absolutely loved her first 3D show.  Of course it was about chocolate.  What else do you expect from Hershey, PA?  She put the sunglasses on and tried to catch the 3D chocolate kissed floating towards her.  It made DH and I smile.  During a scene where water splashed us, she thought she had to go and immediately, DH lifted her up and I slid the potty under her.  Don't judge.  You'd do the same thing.  It was dark and the potty was safely underneath her.  It was a false alarm.  Still DH and I were pretty proud of ourselves.
Oh and the how milk chocolate is made ride is one large Hershey commercial.  Ok, you go to Hershey, PA and Chocolate World expecting this but as a new parent, it really hits you.  The entire catchy song is literally telling your 2 year old, "You love chocolate.  You love Hershey chocolate." 
Oh and I don't know if this is a sign of the things to come but as we left, I told TG she could pick something from the shop.  I was afraid she'd pick some product placement giant Hershey's pillow or doll.
No she picked a green and yellow adult stretchy ring. 
She also picked out an orange Reese's dodge ball but not because it said Reese's but because it was orange.
Go figure.
Other firsts or highlights include:
First time ordering from kids menu
First time in 3 hour car ride without diaper
I didn't freak out about lack of veggies in vacation diet.
I didn't freak out about massive chocolate intake during vacation.
TG's face at the sight of a 5lb bar of chocolate.
TG's recognition of a Hershey's kiss
TG's face whenever a Hershey employee gave her a chocolate bar.
TG picking out exactly what she wanted to eat for practically every meal.
TG holding a giant turkey sandwich and noshing on it.

Monday, February 14, 2011

The Parent Trap

My husband has been complaining again about our nighttime parenting arrangement.
I usually handle the nighttime parenting which means I pass out and don't see him until the morning.
He likes to blame my lack of backbone and our nursing.
I know a lot of it is personal choice and a lot of it he misses me but after a long day of work and a long evening of cooking and trying to spend time with my kid, I really do enjoy the nighttime with TG.
Anyway, since it's Valentine's Day I said that if I needed help, I'd ask him.
Tonight, I asked him to rub our daughter's back when she woke up.
Now it's 2am and all I can hear is my daughter crying requesting a time out.
Have you ever heard a 2 year old ask for time out?
That's interspersed with, "I don't want a pillow.  I want Mommy."
"Where are you going?"
Truth be told, if I went there the moment I heard her call, she's be asleep now.  I rub her back, nurse her or sing her a lullaby and she goes back to sleep.
I also think my husband thinks our daughter is too attached to me.  I don't think this is uncommon though as just last Saturday another father in our building said his two sons treat him like chop liver when mommy is around.
I think it's actually normal.  I get fairly annoyed when DH makes it sound like my daughter and I have some weird attachment issue.
She's freaking 2 years old.  A child should be close to a parent.
She's still crying for a time out.
I think it's rather unhealthy at this stage to try to separate a child from his/her parent.  There is so much going on now.  She's learning new things.  She's learning to use a potty.  She's learning to share and socialize.  She's learning the difference between a stranger and a friendly person.
She's learning to communicate her needs and desires.  She's learning the difference between needs and wants.
Yes, it can be hard but I think this is short lived.  Soon, she'll want to do things without me and holy cow, there will come a time when she doesn't want me.  So not ready for that.
I'm trying to appease my husband's emotions and desires with my child's.  It's getting a bit hard now.  I think it's hard because I'm trying to balance a grown man and a toddler's wants.
Kid is trying to rationalize with DH now.

Monday, February 07, 2011

As if a mother needed something else to obsess or stress about.

I don't know if this is emotional, maternal or common sense.
In NYC, or at least in my part of town, I'm starting to see a growing separation between my kid's parents and their views on school.  I suppose that statement can be said in any place in any town.
The difference I think though is the age at which you start noticing your views may not be the same as your fellow parents.
My kid is 2 years old.  I've always been under the belief that 4 is for pre-k, if desired and 5 for k.  As a parent, if I feel she may need a little more help adjusting to a school environment, I may decided to start with playgroups that offer separation and structure introductions or hold off a year after consulting with the school.
Well, I clearly see two different schools of thought creeping into my life.  I have parents making prospective school charts and what not.  I see parents going on tours and interviews.  So I asked casually, "When you do you expect school to start?"  The answers scared me.  "My kid, 2, is in full day 5 day a week school."  "In order to get into a good kindergarten, you need to be in their pre-k, so you need to start at 3."  "I don't think my child is ready but I'm being told I need to get my foot in the door now."
Wait, so if I want my kid to go to school when she is 4 I have to start this damn process now?
Isn't this a lot of pressure for kids and parents?  Is a 3 year old kid ready for full day 5 day a week school?  Are they physically and mentally and emotionally ready?  I read an article about how a 3 year old kid was kicked out of preschool for repeatedly wetting her pants.  Come on now.  Hope that isn't on her permanent record!  She'll never get into Yale.
I didn't start full day school until I was 6.  My kindergarten was half day.
Now I'm told kindergarten is full day and it isn't just about learning structure and sharing and communicating but actual sit down at desks and do tons of homework and schoolwork.
It makes a newbie parent completely frazzled. 
May it's just me but paying 15K for pre-k seems to be ridiculous.  Not only is paying that ridiculous but placing that much pressure and stress on me, my child and my husband, going through a million interviews, researching, trying to figure out what the sweet spot is, trying to 'not coach but coach' my kid for their interview sounds ludicrous.
My kid is a kid once.  Stress is one thing this world does not have a limited supply of.  Do I want to put this on my kid?  And if I don't, am I a bad parent for not attempting to give her what folks say is a 'leg up'?
And if I do start my kid at 3, what about parents that redshirt their kids?  Would that mean my kid 3 year old is in a class with a 5-6 year old?
God this is insane.
I know times were different but I'm fairly certain Mary wasn't pouring over tablets and having deep conversations with Joe on whether or not Jesus should start school early or later and if that would lead to social, emotional, mental and educational concerns.

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Clean underpants & 1st Bambi moment

Good week.  Crazy busy week but good week.  Slowly getting back to family as focus.
First the big news...  TG spent entire day in underpants and no mess!  Every 60-90 minutes I brought her to bathroom.  She even told me once she needed to go.  We even went to a birthday party and brought her potty and she went in the potty as well.
Other news, big mom fail.  TG has been asking about opera a lot.  Since the orchestra concert, she's been practicing conducting and telling me instrument sounds she recognizes.  She also started listening to a kids version of 'Figaro' and she's been singing it often.  So I thought, maybe she's old enough and she would enjoy a first exposure to Bugs Bunny and the many opera and classical music shorts.  I should have chose 'Long-Haired Hare'.  Instead I chose 'What's Opera, Doc?'
She loved the beginning.  Wagner's dramatic opening and the lightning and short stocky Elmer Fudd were great.  With every cymbal crash she looked me with wide eyes and a big grin.
I was wondering if she was too young when bam, Bugs Bunny aka Brunhilda dies.  That was it.  Nothing could console my child.  No hugs.  No pausing of the scene where Bugs Bunny lifts his head and appears 'alive'.
DH: First Bugs Bunny and you have to chose a one where he dies.  Great. 

For an animated version of what my daughter looked like apx 1:43.