I forgot to write about Chinese New Year. We certainly didn't ignore this holiday around here! Jason's mom had a small dinner party and we took the kids over to eat her amazing meal. Jason commented, "Gee-- it's just like Tuesday night around here," because, of course, he and the kids get her amazing food all the time while I'm away at school. We dressed up Marcie in the outfit she wore for the red couch photo-- which just barely fit her (we bought it big).
We call Marcie our food pirate. She does not seem to have a shut off valve, as far as we can tell. When Casey was a baby -- and even now-- if he wasn't hungry he'd stop eating. Not the case with Marcie. She eats when she's hungry. She eats to be social. She especially wants to eat whatever you have, even if she's already finished her meal. She is also a very independent eater. She likes to feed herself whenever possible. The fact that she's so independent isn't so bad in a controlled environment, like when we put on a bib, sit her in her high chair, and let her go for the yogurt. We can always give her a bath. But when Casey leaves food lying around-- like he did with his cereal bowl yesterday, Marcie has no shame in digging right in! Did I mention Casey eats cocoa krispies for breakfast?!? [And before you think I'm crazy for allowing him to do so, we were actually advised to do so by his doctor because he wouldn't eat any calcium-enriched food after we took away the bottle, and for whatever reason, he'd drink the leftover milk in his cereal bowl and we could crumble tums into the cereal.]
In part because of Casey's sensory issues, and in part because he's a stubborn preschooler, he doesn't much care for getting his hair cut. We like it longer because we think the curls are so darn cute, but it's been definitely getting out of control lately. Yesterday I told Casey if he'd let Jason cut his hair, I'd reward him with two stickers and five MnMs. It still took a little coaxing, but he agreed. Then, after his haircut was finished (he didn't mind modeling for me, that's for sure!), I told him he could have his two stickers and his five MnMs, OR he could come with me to Target to pick out a toy (we had to purchase a gift for a birthday party he's attending today). He chose the toy at Target. Once we were inside Target, Casey insisted we go look at the shoes. Although we think it's a little strange how much Casey loves shoes, there are certainly worse interests a kid can have. But it's worth mentioning here that Casey actually has gathered quite a collection: high quality Stride Rite fire truck shoes, Thomas shoes that are falling apart (purchased weeks after the fire truck ones), Cars Lightning McQueen shoes, Buzz Lightyear shoes-- and now Spiderman shoes. That's a lot of shoes! (Though, to be fair, Marcie also has four pairs of shoes-- pink and white Robeez, black Robeez, gold Crocs, and white Stride Rite walking shoes. So why criticize Casey?) Anyway, after visiting the shoes, we still went and looked at toys, but Casey chose the shoes over a new toy. So I went from promising two stickers and five MnMs to purchasing him a $15 pair of Spiderman shoes. Not a bad trade. Of course, I do have almost 30 years on him-- but still, preschoolers are awfully good negotiators as a general rule. I think it's at least in part because they are shameless.
Mommy & Daddy Time
So, as you know from the Babysitter Blues, Part I and Part II posts, we've been having a bit of trouble getting away for a few hours for some alone or adult time. This is why:
This is what Marcie looked like after I started putting on make-up to go out. I sat with her on the couch for a long time after I was ready and just kept saying over and over again: "Mommy and Daddy are going to go bye-bye for a little while. Marcie is going to say home with Casey and Delinda. Then Mommy and Daddy are going to come back home." Every time I'd say it, she'd sob a little harder and I'd repeat, "Mommy and Daddy are going to come back home."
I asked my friend Delinda, who Marcie has met once or twice, to babysit. We were going to a nice dinner with the two couples we used to hang out with all the time pre-Marcie. Well, pre-Marcie and pre-Kate (one of the couples had a baby in June). Though, to be fair, our lack of going out has really been my unwillingness to get a babysitter, not Kate's parents'.
Anyway, Marcie cried when Delinda arrived. And we went to get her favorite book, Art, which is really Casey's book. But Marcie loves it. And we started out with Delinda reading it while Marcie was on my lap, then finishing with Marcie sitting between us.
By the end of the book, Marcie was calm. She didn't cry when we left. She didn't cry during the 10 renditions of the Lollipop song while Delinda danced with her and Casey. She didn't cry when Delinda gave her the sippy cup of milk. And she didn't even really cry when Delinda put her down to bed. In fact, she didn't wake up and cry when I checked on her at 11:30pm. AND she slept through the night. I don't know if God was just smiling down on us, or if the Motrin we gave her 30 minutes before Delinda's arrival for her teething kept her calm. Or if it's the fact that Delinda is a real miracle-worker (a true possibility here-- as Delinda has some nannying experience). But whatever it was, it was awesome.
And despite that forlorn look of loss on Marcie's face in the photo, this morning, she was happy as a clam. You can watch a video of her on her Bounce & Spin Zebra (her favorite toy). But I have to worn you that I blew it and video-recorded her on my camera sideways (what a dumbass). Still, she's cute. . .