Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Lizzie, Dodo, Casper, and Ira

Lucy’s last day at Puddle Duck was Friday. We treated it as any other day…in that I was not sure how to explain to a 17 month old that this was her last day and she needed to make the most of it and exchange contact information with her peeps so I just sent her to school. I wrote notes to her teachers, even gave them a magnet with Lucy’s picture in it.

When I picked her up, she was fine, I got a bit emotional…..especially when her teacher Liz gave me a little photo book she had made full of pictures of Lucy with all her friends. I gave the book to Lucy in the car and she opened right up to the page that had the picture of she and Liz….and she kept chanting Lizzie, Lizzie, Lizzie…..she continued this chant (and carrying around the book) until she got into the bath. I added extra bubbles to her bath in hopes of distracting her.

Before we left, Lucy spent an extra moment with Elmo the fish saying a special goodbye…and then she and Lizzie had one more hug and it was all over.

The Big E
We became friendly with another couple at day care: Matt and Courtney. Their son is Benjamin. They’re 10 years younger than us (Ok, 12 years younger than Sean, 9 years younger than me, averages out to ten) and Benjamin is 4 months younger than Lucy but we all get on like wildfire and we have great fun with them (and yes, they will still be our friends even though we pulled our kid out of PD)

Courtney grew up in Springfield, MA, just 1.5 hours west of us. This past weekend, we went out to Springfield with them and hit the Big E Fair (the proper name, is I believe, Eastern States Exposition)

I bought Lucy some kooky monkey bag to take with us to England but more importantly, I got two bags of Kettle Korn.

Because we’ve (Ok I've) been wracked with guilt about taking Lucy out of Puddle Duck, I thought it best to compensate for said crime by buying Lucy something…….so we bought her a beta fish.

We picked one up on Sunday afternoon at Petsmart…it was either a Beta Fish or two cats and since we did not have an extra $280 in our pockets, we settled on the $3 fish and the $8 tank. Sean picked out a beautiful blue one and Lucy promptly kissed the container he was swimming around in. We bought the $8 starter tank kit and headed home.

Lucy and Daddy decorated the tank with stickers (Hello Kitty, Monkeys and assorted animals) while I cleaned the tank and gravel and filled it with water which I then conditioned. As they were decorating, there was much discussion about what the fish should be name…

Lucy, asked Sean, what should we name the fish?


I’m not sure why we expected anything other than Elmo….

Ok, says Sean, Elmo it is.

No! Lucy shouts, DODO!!

Dodo? asks Sean

DODO! shouts Lucy with a grin on her face as she again leans in and kisses the container the fish is swimming around in.

Dodo Mama!

Ok Lucy, Dodo it is, I agree. And Lucy spent the next few minutes chanting Dodo, Dodo, Dodo.

We spent a bit of time trying to figure out how often we should feed the fish and then realized we did not know how we were going to get him from the container he was in into the tank as the girl at Petsmart told us not to keep the water he was in….we debated draining it and then quickly dumping the fish into his new home but then we thought that may traumatize and kill him…so Sean suggested we use a slotted spoon. I’m not sure what made us think this was a good idea but I was all for it and while Sean stood with Lucy on his hip watching the whole exchange and subsequent transfer with a look of fear and concern on her face…and every once in awhile, she would reach towards the fish with her chubby little hands and call “Dodo” with a bit of a lilt and with a great expression of care in her voice.

So I grabbed a slotted spoon out of the drawer making a mental note as to which one I was using vowing never to put it in my mouth again, and proceeded to chase Dodo around the jelly jar sized container he came in…I might have bonked him on the head a couple times and Sean drew his breath in sharply which caused Lucy to declare “Oh-No! Dodo!!!” I can’t get the stupid fish on the spoon….

New plan of attack, I’ll dump the water out in the sink, tip Dodo onto the spoon and then lower him into the tank….so I rush over to the sink, dump the water pout using the spoon as a shield to keep Dodo from falling out and then realize I’ve left the tank on the table….and Dodo is dangerously close to becoming a fish out of water so I stop dumping water, push Sean and Lucy out of my way and dump Dodo into the tank with just a little bit of the nasty container water…..

DODO! declares Lucy as she claps and squeals. Her Dad drops her to the floor and she stands at the table watching Dodo float around his new domicile with a little smile on her face…..

Sean leans down peering at Dodo and says…is he bleeding? His gills look like they’re bleeding….we’ll be lucky if this fish is still alive by morning.........what are we supposed to tell her when it dies? I refrain from bonking him on the head with the fish spoon and tell him to just enjoy Dodo with Lucy.

Bag full of prizes
My friend Melissa told me that when she was younger, every weekend her mother and Aunt would take she and her sister shopping and they were always getting “prizes.” The prizes would range from a little piece of costume jewelry to nail polish, to a toy, to a new outfit or shoes. Nonetheless, one of Melissa’s fondest memories is getting prizes….and it’s something she did with her daughter and now does with her nephews and now, its rubbed off on me because I love having and giving Lucy little prizes. I have a shopping bag in the closet full of little prizes…it’s the Prize Bag if you will…..

Now, before any one passes judgment, these are not things that Lucy has seen in the store and starts crying because she wants……they are things that I’ve picked up when she’s not with me…..and for the record, none of these prizes have cost me more than $2. I find them mostly in the Dollar Section at Target (socks with Elmo, Abbey and Hello Kitty on them, ink stamps of Elmo and Cookie Monster, board books, those silly rubber bandz bracelets) Ok well there was the big bouncy ball that costs $2.79 but that was to replace the one that Angela, Cooper and I deflated while using it as a volleyball so it was not technically a prize.

I was using these prizes to lure her into her car seat when I picked her up at Day Care (in a vain attempt to avoid the 30 minute wrestling match)….I’m also hoarding them to use on our trip to England…..you know to keep her occupied on the plane and the 4 hour drive to Halifax….and sometimes, I give one to her for no reason other than I like to see the smile on her face when she is presented with something……she really is quite an appreciative little imp…..and it makes my heart melt to see her face light up when she is presented with something as simple as a $1 ink stamp in the shape of Elmo or a pair of socks with Abbey on them…..

Our neighbor Pat decorated for Fall/Halloween on Saturday while we were at the Big E.

Sunday morning, when we took Lucy outside, she spotted the ghost that Pat put in her shrubs and started making ghost noises….she pointed at the ghost and said “OOOOOO” make her voice all shaky and wiggly like we all do when we make a ghost noise.

It took Sean and I a minute to figure out what she was doing and why…..I’m still trying to figure out how she even knows what a ghost is and what it says!

Now, every time we go out or come in the front door, she makes the ghost noise….


Words, Words, Words
Lucy has so many words now its hard for me to keep up…I was trying to keep a list of them but I’ve lost track. Yesterday, when I picked her up she came running over with a Lego bus in her arms and yelled “Mama! Bus!” then she told me to “March. Whats even more brilliant is she uses her words in context!

Let the Wonder Years begin
Since Friday was Lucy’s last day at Puddle Duck, it only stands to reason that Monday was her first day at The Wonder Years. Sean and I took her in together so we could get the lay of the land and meet her teacher.

As soon as we walked in the room, Lucy spotted a basket full of Elmos and started excitedly yelling Elmo! Elmo! Elmo! One of the teachers started talking to her and pulled the basket of Elmos down…Lucy was playing with her while we spoke toher head teacher Georgette (which is just such a big name…a mouthful for me even as an adult so I wonder how the little kids pull it off…)

We hung out for a few minutes after we finished talking to her teachers and more kids started to arrive..…she said “hi” to everyone who walked through the door and offered them an Elmo to play with…

We waited about 10 minutes and decided to make a break for it as she was playing quite nicely with two kids…so we ducked out of the room and made our way down the hall to the front door…….by the time we got to the front door, Lucy must have realized we were no longer in the room because all of a sudden, we hear her crying….then she started wailing….then I started to cry so Sean pushed me out the door….

I cried the entire 8 minute drive to work and after much reassuring from Sean, I was fine. But the day could not have been any longer……it dragged and dragged and dragged…. ….I’m pretty confident that the world stopped spinning on its axis round about 1:30pm and time literally stopped…..

5pm finally gets here and I’m out the door before the clock hits 5:01….and I drive like a mad man to get to my baby. I arrive at The Wonder Years, throw open the door and speed walk to Lucy’s classroom…its empty! I panic..then remember they told me they sometimes move into the room next door when there are only a couple kids at the end of the day….

I approach the second door and hear music and singing and clapping and laughling…I see Lucy through the window twirling….she’s dancing and laughing with the teacher and another kid….I walk in and she sees me, shouts Mama and then grabs my hand and starts showing me around the room..the tank with the three turtles in it! The Lego Bus (she can say bus)! The big box of dress up clothes! The Elmo cutout on the wall!

And when it was time to leave, she gave Georgette a big hug, picked up her new Miss Kitty Lunchbox, yelled Bye! and headed down the hall towards the front door smiling and laughing all the way.....and, she DID NOT fight me when it was time to get in the car seat

Is your car running?
The other day, our neighbor Dave says to us hey, I noticed the other night that Sean's car was running for like 15 minutes or so and then stopped...was everything all right?

Yep, we say, everything was fine....except Lucy discovered where we keep our keys (basket by the front door) and found the button on Daddy's key fob and likes to press it...its the button for the remote start

And she found Mummy's key chain as well.....and likes pushing the orange button on the back of the key fob with the word "Panic" printed next to it.......the Panic button, when pressed, makes the horn on the car start honking...and does not stop until it is pushed again.....

We might let Lucy watch too much TV.....
So we're eating breakfast one morning and Lucy starts chanting something with her mouth full...at first we had no idea what she was saying.....until she swallowed her pancake and then we clearly heard her chanting IRA, IRA, IRA, IRA!!!

Ira is a car dealership chain down here...and they run this commercial with these little kids singing Ira, Ira zero down at Ira!!  Only a matter of time before she can say zero down at Ira......we're so proud....

Day 2
By all accounts Lucy had a good day.....until I got there to pick her up. When I walked in the room, she was sitting at a table playing with a puzzle. She hopped up when she saw me, came over and gave me a hug and then pointed to a little boy (Jacoby) and said Elmo. The she started whining Elmo, then she started crying Elmo and next thing I know, she is on the floor having a full blown tantrum and keeps calling for Elmo.

Apparently Lucy had been playing with the big Elmo doll and had Kylie swaddle it in a blanket for her to play with.....when she decided she was done with Elmo, Jacoby picked Elmo up and started playing with him. Lucy caught sight of Elmo's leg when she came over to give me a hug and decided that she wanted Elmo back....but Elmo was playing with Jacoby....but Lucy did not care...she wanted Elmo back.....poor Jacoby just stood there looking at Lucy.

I tried to distract her with her binky, her monkey and my car keys...no go
I tried to distract her by telling her Elmo was in the car waiting for her (which he really was) and that Dodo was at home waiting for her......she did not fall for it
I chased her around the room trying to get her coat on her and when I tried to scoop her up, she went all limp noodle on me

Kylie and Laura, the two teachers, were quite sweet and patient with Lucy and I....both pointed out that Lucy was a bit tired (they're on a different lunch and nap schedule at WY than she was on at PD and she has not quite adjusted) and that this was totally normal for a child Lucy's age just coming into a new school/classroom......

Then Lucy decided she was done.....and came over to me and said "Dodo, Dada, Elmo" She put her arms out for me to slip her coat on and then picked up her bag and headed to the door....

Maria, the Mama

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