Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Last Day of "Summer"

Tomorrow Dotty will start a new "school year" at her school. She will have a new teacher, a new classroom, and new classmates.

Even though Dotty goes to her school year round tomorrow is still a big day.

Dotty may not really understand it but I do.

And part of me is sad. My little girl is growing up.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Just Whispering...

The other day Dotty had a couple of friends over. The girls played well but I did hear some fussing and then Dotty came into the living room. I told her "I don't want you to be tattle telling".

Dotty said, "I am not. I am just going to whisper."

Then she told me that one of the little girls took her toy...she whispered it of course.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Big Red Toe...

Thursday night at about 2am Dotty woke up telling me her toe hurt and asked me to rub it. She had been up a lot during the night already and I was exhausted so I just rubbed her little foot for a few minutes until I thought she was back asleep.

I did not put much stock in Dotty telling me her foot hurt because she had also been talking a lot in her sleep and she had asked me for things like lamb food for Mary's lamb and she had told me that she was lost and she could not find her way...when I asked where she was trying to go she said to Cinderella's house.

I am a vivid dreamer who dreams a lot and I have also been told I talk in my sleep so I know what Dotty is going through with her dreams. Sometimes they can be so real it is hard to know what is really happening and what is not. Thus I thought the "hurt foot" was just a dream.

However, when she got out of bed Friday morning to get ready to go to school she told me that her foot still hurt. We were standing in the hallway outside the bathroom and I glanced down at her feet and was about to ask "which foot" when I saw it....the little toe next to her big toe on her left foot was very red and about twice the size as normal.

Being a good parent, I of course "panicked calmly"...meaning inside I was a mess but so as not to scare her I remained outwardly calm. I called Mom to come look at it and Mom panicked fairly calmly. We decided I needed to take Dotty to see her doctor just to make sure it was nothing serious.

Dr. Yap thought is was an ant bite or something similar to that and gave me some cream to apply with some other instructions. By this time it was 10am so I took Dotty to school (after going by to see Memaw for her approval of Dr. Yap's conclusion).

The minute Dotty got into her classroom she wiped off her shoe to show all her classmates her "big red toe". The teacher immediately asked me what the doctor had said and seemed relieved that it was not contagious but she did have Dotty put her shoe back on and told the kids to wash their hands.

Dotty never really complained too much about her toe and was in a good mood all day. In fact, while we were waiting for Dr. Yap to see her Dotty just looked at me and said "If Dr. Yap has a princess bandaid I bet my toe will feel lots better."

I went out and bought several boxes of princess bandaids since they seem to be the magic cure for whatever ails Dotty.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Dotty's Doll Room

The house that Dotty and I live in is an older home. It has a room that was meant to be a "formal dining area". Since Dotty and I don't do too much formal dining, (we usually don't even sit at the kitchen table to eat but rather have "picnics" in front of the tv) I made that room the place to store 90% of Dotty's toys (8% are in her bedroom, 1% is in her bathroom, and the other 1% is lost).

Originally I called this room the "Toy Room". I had a toy room growing up and I know lots of people that have toy rooms (some have entire homes that could be considered toy rooms) but Dotty has always called this room "The Doll Room".

I love that she calls it that and I now call it that too (even though it at times confuses the little kids that come to play with Dotty). While Dotty does not have an abundance of dolls (trust me she has plenty though) and very few dolls are "for display only" she calls it the The Doll Room because she fell in love with just such a room when she was barely one-year old.

Kathy, who was the first non-blood relative to keep Dotty, has the best Doll Room. I was amazed the first time I saw it. She has such a collection of dolls, toys, books, games and so much more that I was jealous Dotty got to play all day in such a fun room.

Kathy is a retired teacher and while she "played" with Dotty all day long she really taught Dotty so much. I was amazed at the things Dotty came home saying and singing and all because she learned it while "playing" with Kathy. (Dotty still loves to sing today and I know that is partly due to all the songs she and Kathy would sing together.)

Since Dotty and I moved, we don't get to see Kathy and Gary as much but I am so thankful for the time, love, and support they gave to me and Dotty. Kathy is truly an adopted grandmother to Dotty and both she and Gary will always have a special place in our hearts.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Dotty's First Day of School...

Don't let the title fool you. Dotty did not start a new daycare "school" and she is not already old enough to go to kindergarten but that day is coming sooner than I want it to...hence the post title.

Dotty and I live across from a school that did have students start today and as I watched parents drive up and drop off their children in new clothes, with new backpacks, and big smiles (some not so big smiles) on their faces I was so happy to think of the day when I will get Dotty all dressed and ready for her first day of kindergarten. Helping her pick out the perfect backpack and lunch box. Then selecting the right "back to school" outfit. Doing her hair and talking about all the fun things she will do at her new school. It all seemed like so much fun.

Then a car passed me and I saw a mother crying and I immediately burst into tears myself. My baby is growing up too fast! Before I know it she will be going to kindergarten, then junior high, then high school, then off to college and I just can't stand it (to quote Memaw)!

One of my favorite sayings is "the days are long but the years are short" and today reminded me just how true that is.

I don't know why the lady was crying in the car. I assume she was just feeling what a lot of parents feel when they watch their children grow up....pride, happiness, and a little bit of sadness too. It really is a selfish thing to want to keep our children little forever but if I could I would keep Dotty just like she is now...(especially since she is almost 100% potty trained...she still wears diapers at night). Of course I have thought every stage so far has been "the best" stage so I am sure all the ones to come will be just as wonderful in their own way.

To all the moms that have or will send their "babies" off to school soon I am sending you out some love and strength...mainly because I am going to need all the help I can get when I have to do the same thing with Dotty just a few short years from now!!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

God has perfect timing...and a sense of humor!

Yesterday I stayed home with Dotty to spend some time with her. I often feel like during the week I just get the "we gotta go" time. In the mornings "we gotta go" get ready for school. In the evenings "we gotta go" eat dinner, take a bath, and get ready for bed. All these activities can be fun but are usually on a time table and end up just seeming like chores rather than "play time". Plus, I am also in "gotta go" mode myself during these times. I "gotta go" to work, "gotta go" do the laundry, wash dishes, put sheets on beds (again), etc.

So one day a week I try to just hang out with Dotty. No schedules too much. No plans. I always look forward to the day but I also tend to stress out too. When I try to "plan fun" it once again puts us in "we gotta go" mode...exactly what I was trying to avoid.

For instance, yesterday I thought I would take Dotty swimming over at Memaw's. Well we needed to be there before it got too hot and before Memaw needed to leave for work. After that I had the problem of getting Dotty to leave Memaw's apartment (because life is good there). Then I had trouble getting Dotty to take a nap (which she never did). I even drove to Electra trying to get that girl to fall asleep and she never caved.

On the way back home I was feeling frazzled and defeated and like a pretty crappy mom when Dotty said she needed to poop. I have a portable potty in my car that Dotty likes to use so I offered to pull over and let her go. The minute I found an exit on Hwy 287 I pulled over and when I put the car in park...Dotty said she didn't need to poop. I asked her about 5 times to make sure and then continued on our way home.

About 5 miles from the house Dotty informed me that she didn't need to poop because she had already pooped...in her pants. I was not pleased. I told her that was going to be a mess. That I had asked her if she needed to potty. That we have a potty in the car for that reason and that I was going to have to throw away her pants (that she loved) since she pooped in them.

Of course my child then says "I didn't poop in my pants."

Due to the fact I now had a poopy fibber in my car I mumbled under my breath..."Heaven help me."

Less than a second later Dotty said "Mommy?"

I looked at her in my rear view mirror...

Then she said "I love you."

Heaven did help me. God knew that was just what I needed to hear. He knew I was hanging on for life to the end of the "good mother" rope. He knew I felt like a huge failure and he wanted to know that I hadn't failed...at least not in Dotty's eyes. I strive for perfection but Dotty just wants her mommy...imperfections and all.

He also knew that when we made it home and I carefully pulled Dotty out of her seat she had in fact not pooped in her pants. We ran inside to go potty.

Of course here is where the sense of humor comes in...

Not five minutes later while I was unpacking the car Dotty came to show me "something"...never a good sign. Well that "something" was poop (yes more of it...apparently she had to go again) that was all over her potty seat, all over the floor, Dotty's clothes and (of course) her hands.

Funny God. Real funny.

Now I have no doubts that had this happened before "Heaven helped me" I would have lost it...completely. But since God had shown me the love of my little girl I was able to be patient and calm and cleaned up the mess and Dotty without one raised voice or one tear (from either of us).

Thank God...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

So many Toys and Books...So Little Time!

Dotty is spoiled. I know this. The child says "I want" and the child receives. In fact, with her birthday just around the corner, I have gotten to the point of threatening everyone( mainly Memaw) that Dotty does not need anymore toys until her birthday.

Just the other day I watched her purposely step on her Cinderella crown until it broke. Then she came crying to me saying she needed another one. I asked her if she broke the crown on purpose or if it was an accident. She looked at me with those big eyes and then scowled and said "On purpose. I want a new one." in a loud and hateful tone of voice.

I calmly had her throw the broken crown away and then sat her down and told her it was not nice that she broke her crown on purpose and that she would not be getting a new one. She could ask for one for her birthday and she MIGHT get one then.

This morning she put on her Cinderalla dress and shoes and this is the conversation that followed...

Dotty: Where is my NEW Cinderella crown???
Me: I did not buy you a new one. Do you remember what happened to your old one?
Dotty: Yes I BROKE it on PURPOSE. (two words said with much emphasis)
Me: And do you remember that I said you will have to ask for a new one for your birthday and you MIGHT get one then. (emphasis on one word)
Dotty: I want a Cinderella crown NOW! (emphasis...well I think you can guess)
Me: Well you are not going to get one now. Next time do not break the one you have.

Dotty stormed off crying and yelling. I believe I heard the words "wicked stepmother mommy" in there somewhere...

Dotty's Water Park...

Thanks to Jake, Keri, and Presley getting ready to move at the end of August, Dotty has had Presley's water slide on loan for the summer and she LOVES it!!! She feels like she has her own "water park" in her very own backyard. With a little air and a water hose she has the time of her life. Of course I love it because it saves me from having to pay for us to go to Castaway Cove or somewhere else and I don't have to water my backyard too much I just move the slide from one area to the next. Of course once I get my water bill I might not like the slide nearly as much as Dotty does!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Bathroom Knowledge...

Dotty's mind never ceases to amaze me.

Since we are still working on being 100% potty trained there are lots of ways I try to get Dotty to use the potty especially before we leave the house to go somewhere. The best trick is to "race" Dotty to potty. This requires us to be using our respective potties at the same time in her bathroom. Being that we are both girls (and that I am the Mom and desperate to be done with pull-ups) I see no problem with this and the tactic has worked great many, many times.

The other day when we were both done I went to put the lid back down and flush and Dotty told me to "Wait". She then lifted up the seat and said "This is how Daddy needs to tee tee in the potty."

I laughed so hard...in fact I might have peed in my pants had I not just gone.

Tony was thrilled with Dotty's observation (and will probably be thrilled with this post).

Nothing New on the Menu...

Dotty and Memaw were playing Restaurant the other night while Memaw was visiting our house. I was busy doing...well the million things I do when Mom comes over to give me a hand with Dotty...but I did catch just a bit of what was happening in Dotty's Restaurant.

To begin with Memaw had to wait for an open table...must have had some slow bus boys because the only table in the joint was unoccupied when I walked by...but Memaw read a magazine while she waited to be seated.

When Memaw's table was finally ready I happened to be passing by the doorway and heard Memaw ask Dotty, "What's on the menu tonight?"

Memaw got the same look from Dotty that I got when I visited the restaurant and asked a very similar question. She also got the same response from Chef Dotty "Food."

Gotta love a restaurant that serves "food" every night of the week!