Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Park Day at SLP...

Today at school Dotty's class had a "Park Day". This is a day full of sand, slides, buckets, bugs, frogs and fun! Dotty's class got to go to the "big park" as Dotty explained to me. Normally they go to a smaller area separate from the main park that has smaller slides, swings, and toys for children 2 years and under.

Dotty was so pumped to get to go to "Presley's Playground" (i.e. the big playground). Although she did tell me some of the slides were so big they were "a little bit scary". From what I could gather from my 2 year old, the day was spent mostly outside with a little bit of cake in their classroom to top off the morning.

When I went to pick Dotty up she looked tired but not nearly as exhausted as her teacher, Mrs. Rumsfelt, looked. When I asked how the day was Mrs. Rumsfelt simply sighed and said "busy". Now from a woman with four boys all under the age of 7 (and one with a mild form of autism) that sounded like a pretty rough day. However, by the time we got to Memaw's house Dotty had caught a second wind and was running and playing!

I am so glad I am not a teacher. They are truly special people. If you have not done so lately thank a teacher...it does not even have to be your own child's teacher. Just find one (two or three) and thank them!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Mother's Day...

I hope you all had a wonderful Mother's Day! If you are a mother I am sure it was extra special.

I am not a big believer in needing a "special day" to celebrate mothers, fathers, Christ, people in general. To paraphrase the book I love so much (The Happiness Project)...it matters more what you do every day than what you do once in a while. I am Dotty's mom everyday. I love her and she loves me every day. Mother's Day does not make her love me more (especially at 2...she has no clue about Mother's Day). I love her more and more every day (and that still amazes me).

However, I do appreciate all the efforts that people put forth on Mother's Day and days like it. I know I found gifts for my own mom starting in March and just had to hold onto them until a "holiday" came around. I also got amazing gifts for Mother's Day and I love all of them. My mom got me a Flip camera...so now I can record Dotty's life with sound and movement (and boy does that girl have some great moves and sound bites).

Dotty also made me an amazing Mother's Day gift (with help from her Daddy and Nana). She had it wrapped in beautiful paper that she showed me with great flare and pride on Sunday morning. She also helped me open it by ripping off the wrapping paper for me. Inside was a framed poem that said...

Sometimes you get discouraged
Because I am so small
And always leave my fingerprints
On furniture and walls
But every day I'm growing
I'll be grown up someday
And all those tiny handprints
Will surely fade away
So here's a final handprint
Just so you can recall
Exactly how my fingers looked
When I was very small

Below the poem Dotty's hands were on the page in red paint with the her name and date below that. I had to work really hard not to start crying in front of Dotty. It was such a sweet gift that I will treasure forever.

Gifts like that remind me of another saying from The Happiness Project...the days are long but the years are short. Too often I am reminded that Dotty is growing up so fast and my once baby has become a sweet little girl who will soon be a big girl, a young lady, and then a grown woman. Through it all though I get to see the journey of her life from a unique position...that of her mother...and what a great view that is!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

One Park, Two Park, Red Park, Blue Park...

Yesterday Dotty, Memaw, and I left at about 9:30am to head to Colleyville to visit my Grandparents (Dotty's Great Grandparents). On the way down to see Mother and Peepaw (as Dotty calls them) Dotty was an angel for the entire 2 hour trip. (I am still amazed that parents ever traveled with small children in the days before DVD players.) While Memaw and I visited, Dotty and the "Wiggles" had a grand time rehearsing all the nursery rhymes ever known to man (some of them are quite pointless but Dotty seems to get a kick out of them...and of course as I drift off to sleep each night it is the really dumb ones that seem to run through my head on an unending "repeat" mode).

We got to Colleyville in great time and like most young children it took a while for Dotty to warm up to her new audience but luckily Memaw had packed a small suitcase (and i am not joking on that one) full of toys and books for Dotty to play with so Mother and Peepaw could at least "watch" Dotty interact with something. My Uncle Donny and cousin Matt came over to eat chicken spaghetti (my favorite) with us. It was so nice to see them although the visit was short because Donny needed to get back to work. Later, Mother, Memaw, Dotty and I went out to see Mother's flowers and Dotty played with all the butterflies.

Memaw and I then took Dotty to a park close to Mother and Peepaw's house. It was filled with all sorts of "blue" fun things to play on and we let Dotty run, swing, slide, and play until she was just exhausted. Nap Time!!! We then decided it was a good time to hit the road to head to McKinney where we were going to meet Tony who would take me and Dotty back with him to Byers so Memaw could spend the weekend with Mother and Peepaw.

Dotty slept the whole way to McKinney and woke up to another park that we had found. It was next to a beautiful lake and had all sorts of ducks, geese, and birds flocking around looking for food. Dotty loved feeding the birds but in an effort to get close to a grumpy duck she and Memaw had to make a run for it to not get a "duck kiss" (as we told Dotty). Times like those make me wish I had my video camera...I might could have been a winner on America's Funniest Home Videos!

Soon it was time to meet Tony who took me and Dotty to yet another park that had three sets of slides and swings and a water area with sprinklers all in it. Dotty LOVED this park and would probably liked to have talked to a real estate agent about a house nearby but we only had a hour to spare there.

We then took Dotty to a softball park at McKinney Boyd (home of the "red" Lady Broncos) to watch Robert's Gunter team play in an Area game against S&S. Gunter won 5 to 4 and Dotty had a good time playing with a little girl named Lilly who was decked out in a Gunter Tigers cheerleading uniform.

After what was a long day Dotty, Tony, and I headed back to Byers. Dotty was a really good girl and a real joy to have. She made it until just outside of Byers until she fell asleep and thanks to a 10 minute nap I heard today that she was up until 1am!!!

With all the parks we visited I was reminded of how wonderful it was to swing and slide and just play! I thought back to the days when my biggest concern was getting a "good" swing and saving the one beside me for my friend to swing on. I am so glad I get to relive some of those wonderful memories as I pushed Dotty "higher" in the warm sunshine.

To quote Dotty..."We had a wonderful day!"

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Sleeping Beauty...

I love watching Dotty sleep. She looks so peaceful and so calm and quite frankly just so beautiful.

I just wish Dotty slept more!

Since birth Dotty has not been a good sleeper...at least not for me! She resists naps like they are the plague and nights are the absolute worst. I can remember only one night when Dotty was just a few weeks old that she actually "slept through the night". On that particular night Tony and I had got home late...probably from a basketball game or something...and Dotty had fallen asleep in her car seat. So I...knowing you should never wake a sleeping child...offered to sleep on the couch with Dotty asleep in her car seat on the floor beside me until she woke up. I assumed this would be in about an hour or two but low and behold that little toot slept the entire night (while I woke up every hour to make sure she was still breathing).

Other than that night Dotty is known to wake up as few as 3 times or as many as every 45 minutes. Now she is never awake long...she just demands her sippy cup and usually gets her diaper changed and then it is back off to dreamland but you try to wake up every 45 minutes each night for the past 2.5 years and see how you feel.

I am sooooo tired!

This week has been really bad at night. Usually I get one or two nights of Dotty only waking up about 3 times but this week every night has been the every 45 minutes to an hour of her waking up. Luckily we stayed the night with Memaw on Tuesday so I did get some sleep that night or I would be a zombie today.

Last night I got a total of 4.5 hours of sleep and mind you these were not all done at once. I got to sleep for 1.5 hours...then Dot woke up...then I got 2 hours...then Dot woke up...then I got 1 hour...and I have been awake since 4am! Someone help me!!!

I know my child is addicted to her sippy cup like it is a bottle or a pacifier (or even some type of illegal drug) but even kids who still take pacifiers at this age sleep through the night! I have tried sleeping with her, staying with her until she falls asleep, letting her cry in her bed (although since she is in a regular bed now and not confined to a crib she just gets out of bed and comes in my room and cries). I have tried having a quiet room, a room with noise, a totally dark room, a night light, a warm room, a cool room, sleeping with a toy, sleeping with almost 100 toys...nothing has worked so far.

I know someday she will sleep...I pray for that day to come sooner rather than later! Pray for me! I believe in the power of prayer and at this point I am turning it over to God (I probably should have done that a lot sooner). Every night Dotty and I pray and thank God for the day, our friends and family, and for His Son and we ask him to help us have a safe night and a good day tomorrow...I think now I am going to throw in a good night's sleep! I know not all prayers are answered but it couldn't hurt to ask!!!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Red, Rojo, Stop...

Dotty's class at school today took a walking "field trip" to the fire station which is just about a block or two away from school. When I picked Dotty up I asked her how her day had gone...as usual she said she "had a wonderful day". I asked her if she got to go outside...she said "yes". I asked her if she went for a walk with the class...she said "yes". I asked her if she went to the fire station...she said "yes". I asked her if she saw a big truck...she said "yes".

Now at times I cannot get this kid to stop talking and I really thought that we would not hit the one word answers about "how was your day at school" until at least junior high but apparently my 2 year old was channeling her future 13 year old self and was in no mood to "talk to mommy".

Finally I asked Dotty "what color was the truck" as I was buckling her into her car seat and without taking her eyes off the "Wiggles" on the car's DVD player she said "Red, Rojo, Stop". I stopped and stared at my little one. I was confused, amazed, and trying not to laugh out loud all in the same moment.

I took a breath and told Dotty that it was very good that she knew the truck was red and in Spanish red is said rojo and the color red can also mean for people to stop. She just looked at me like "Duh, Mom".

As I got in my seat to drive away I smiled to myself. What a wonderful world it must be to a 2 year old...where everything is black and white or red (or rather...negro y blanco o rojo).

Monday, May 3, 2010

Oh what an imagination...

Dotty is at that age where she loves to play pretend. She loves to tell stories and she loves to makeup situations, characters, events, etc. At home Dotty is constantly wanting me to be the "patient" so she can use her doctor bag and give me a "check-up". More than once I have had a play thermometer shoved in my mouth or been poked hard by her toy shot of medicine (her bedside manners are pretty bad). She also has a dress up bag full of hair and makeup items. I have been blown out, curled up, straightened, combed, and brushed until I am sure my hair is about to fall out and I have had so much fake lipstick, eye shadow, and blush put on that if it was the real deal I would put Tammy Faye Baker to shame.

At Memaw's apartment Dotty loves to play with the toy kitchen. She is constantly asking "What do you want for supper?" Everything is served with peas and french fries (what a lovely combination) and the best part of all of it is that she only "cooks" in the microwave part and uses the sink to "wash the dishes"...I guess I need to use the stove more at our house so she will know what to do with it!

Dotty has also gotten to the point where what is real and what she "thought was real" are a little blurred. When I asked her last night how she got some bruises on her leg (she is always bumping into things and bruises are common with her) she told me..."Bara hit me but it is okay Momma because I hit her back." Now I am 100% positive that Bara did not hit Dotty, but what concerns me is that Dotty thought that "hitting Bara back" was a good solution. We had a long talk about how it was not nice to hit anyone for any reason.

Oh the joys and challenges that come with a 2 year old. No telling what Dotty says about me to other people!!!