Friday, October 22, 2010

Waking up to singing

Okay, I LOOOVE animals. Animals of all kinds - even if you are a raccoon or coyote raiding our campsite. G and I took D camping again last night. This would be her second time. I think she thoroughly enjoyed it.
So, early this am, I am awakened by rustling outside by our trash bag (that sits maybe 1 foot away from our tent). It's on a post, but we forgot to close it. So, it could've a been a raccoon, but due to how high it was above our heads, we are inclined to think it might've been a canine-type of some sort. Ooh boy would I have LOVED to see the dark. Even maybe just it's silhouette. Sadly, we had the rain tarp over the tent so the windows were covered. Boo.
So, it was really lovely to hear the rustling. But, better still was when D started to wake up (sure, it was probably around 5:30am) and this is what we hear. We hear her singing (in her super cute baby voice), "Somewhere...pale moonlight" "Somewhere...pale moonlight" Oh, my heart just about melted.
Now let me give you some backstory. Ever since D was young, I've sung to her. Not because I have a great voice (or even a good voice). I just thought some singing would soothe her and it actually does. It works GREAT. However, now that she can speak she is often ordering me to sing, "Mama! Tsang ge!" (English: Mama, sing!) So, I always defer to the only song I kinda know all the words to which is Somewhere Out There from American Tale - Fievel's song. :o)
And then I'll also sing Somewhere Over the Rainbow. But lately, since she is always telling me to sing, I've been singing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star and Mary Had a Little Lamb so as to save poor G's ear drums. I figure you can't really butcher up the melody on the latter two songs...
She often will say, "Mama! Tsang Mewy Lam" and I will sing Mary Had a Little Lamb. She's never really asked me to specifically sing either of the grown up songs. Probably because she couldn't really articulate.
So I was so surprised and happily gushing to hear her sing the lyrics as she knows them. SOO CUTE!
And then on the car ride home this afternoon she says, "Mama! Tsang Over the Rainbow?" OMG!! I was floored! Well, of course I can sing that for you!
The funny thing is, when G tries to join in, she says, "No. No daddy sing." And yesterday, when we were driving to the campground and she was really overtired and crying to have me sing to her, she went bananas when G tried to join in. She was already very teary-eyed while I was singing to her and when G joined in, she lost it and was screaming, "No! NOooooo! No daddy sing!!"

Success! And then accident!

Today, D was running around without a diaper. I've been letting her go bare-bottom b/c she gets such crazy rashes. She ran into the bathroom and pulled out her porta-potty. Then sat in it, then brought her step stool over to throw her feet up (don't know where she got that from...really!), paused and then got a book. She sat down again and then surprised me and her by peeing! Oh, I made such a big show. "Yeay!! Good job! You pee'd! Yeayy!" Then daddy came over and congratulated her also.
A couple of hours later, we are skyping with the grandparents and she pees on the floor. She started to cry but only a little. She was not as distraught as the first time so that's good. But then again, is it good? Perhaps she will end up thinking it's okay to pee anywhere? Fun. The joys of parenthood.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Oopsie! A little accident...

So D lately has been really insistent on not wearing her diapers. She likes to just run around bare-bottomed and last night, she actually said she had to go pee-pee after the bath and I put her on the little potty and she might've peed just a weee bit (no pun intended).
Today, she didn't want to wear her diaper so I said, fine. Just let her pull her pants up.
We left the house to run some errands and when we got back, she had fallen asleep in her car seat.
I put her in her crib and announced to G, "Well, this should be interesting. D is sleeping without any diaper on..." Heheh!
Not a problem! D woke up bone dry. I asked her if she had to pee and she said no. So we piddled (no pun intended here, either) around the house and eventually sat her in her high chair to have some snacks. At which point, after some cookies and some cheese, she peed!! Right in her high chair and onto the floor. She was mortified and cried and cried.
I whipped her out of the chair, took her to her potty and tried talking her through the whole thing..."It's okay D. You pee'd! It's a good thing that you pee'd but you should pee on the potty."
She was so sad. She cried and cried, but still announced she didn't want to wear her diaper.
Ummm...I might've just sabotaged our future potty training efforts. Ugggh! I sure hope not. I better hurry up and read that potty training book! Get a jump start on this stuff!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Chinese child-rearing vs. other cultures

I'm not familiar with other parenting styles, but I am getting a good idea of how the Chinese do it based on watching our Chinese nanny and recalling what it was like growing up in a Chinese household...
For the Chinese, it's all about the competition. You have to be better than the other person. Doesn't matter who it is or what the task is, you should try to beat the other person. Also, they are big on "outward appearances"... I can't quite describe it but let me try to explain it to you.
This morning, when Nanny showed up ("N"), D was crying. She was crying because she didn't want to hang out with N (despite the fact that they seemed to have a great time together last Tuesday). As is customary, oftentimes when D is crying and I see no reason for her to be crying, I just put her down. So, she is crying her little eyes out and of course, N goes in to rescue her.
I hear N in the room saying, "Don't cry D...look at all your friends. They are all laughing at you. You don't want them laughing at you, do you?"
Thank GOODNESS D is not old enough to understand that!! I was really irritated at hearing that! But, there is a little bit of a language barrier so I didn't want to go in and reprimand the N. But I did not like that one bit. Had the N been able to speak English, I would kindly explain to her that in this household we don't speak to our child that way. If she is crying, we try to appease her and ask her what's wrong and we try to divert her attention. (Or as I mentioned above, we leave her on the floor) :o) We do NOT tell her all her dollies/stuffed animals are laughing at her. What is UP with that??
And whenever we are sitting down and eating, the N, who is tasked with feeding D, will undoubtedly remark, "Look who's eating the fastest. Let's compete with mommy and see who can finish faster."
I also hate that. I do not like to foster competition in my child. Doing well in life is not about how you measure up against others. It's about how you measure up against yourself.
I can't help but reflect back to my own childhood and how often my mother would say, "You got what grade?! So-and-so-got an A..." Yeah...that never worked on me. I didn't care what other people got. I got what I got and I'm not working any harder than I feel like it. But that was me. My sister, on the other hand worked her A** off to remain competitive in her/my mom's circle of friends. Sure, she was a straight A student but where did it get her in life? It got her an anal sense of being and an overly stressed personality. No thanks.
I might have to get rid of the Chinese N. D can learn Chinese at Chinese school.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The mosquito bite

D has had an open/healing wound on her face for probably more than a month now. G and I are crazy over it. We can't stand the sight of it and it's taking forever to heal because not only does D tend to sleep on her face (rubbing the wound on her flat sheet), but she also tends to pick at it. It doesn't seem to bother her - it's just something to pick at.
It started as a mosquito bite that she scratched and became an open wound. Then somehow it became two boo-boos. Then while we were trying to fix it with liquid band-aid, somehow all the messing around seemed to give her a pimple so now it's three open wounds! NOTHING helped. The liquid bandaid just made her want to touch it more.
It's finally come down to driving her around for her naps to make sure she doesn't touch it while trying to go down for a nap. While I drive, I keep the mirror on her and sometimes I catch her hand moving up to her face and I have to snap at her, "Don't touch your face!!!"
After she goes down, I sneak into her room and put a band aid on her face. This inevitably finds its way off of her face by the time we go in to pick her up from her nap, but at least she's picking at the band aid, and hopefully, not her face. The band aid also keeps her wounds from being rubbed on the flat sheet.
Lamented to my sister about this mess yesterday and she gave me the brilliant idea of also putting band aids over D's fingers so she can't scratch them! So, that is what I did today. Drove her around. Then put her in her crib fast asleep. I then snuck in, slapped a band aid on her face then two little round band aids around her two fingers on her right hand (pointer and middle). We'll see how we fare with this....I hope it doesn't leave a permanent scar.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Oh waddle, waddle

Go away...don't come back any day...
Yes, in my old age, I have the arm waddle. Anyone ever watch "Ally McBeal"? That show often referenced the "waddle" the extra sagging skin that hangs out between your chin and your neck. Usually happens to older people. Well, I have the arm waddle - the extra skin that hangs out on the underside of your upper arm between the armpit and the elbow.
Usually, I avoid noticing the arm waddle by never waving my arms up high. When I see people, I wave with a little crooked arm and a curving of my fingers to indicate "hi"! However, it is made painfully (pun intended) evident when D wants to play the "night-night game" (play napping) on the ground and as I am lying there with my arm outstretched, she comes over and either steps on or kneels on my arm waddle! Since it is obviously lying flat on the ground, outstretched from my arm. Pool girl thinks she is siddling up to me all snuggly and I'm writhing in pain because she's on my waddle. Curses.

Be careful what you wish for

I think ever since D was born I'd been saying, "I can't wait 'til she can speak!!" And all the other parents would say, "Uh-no. You don't want that. Then they don't stop and they keep asking questions and they talk back.." And I would respond, "No way, I can't wait to hear what fun things she comes up with as back talk!"
Well, D is not quite at the back talking or questioning stage yet, but she does certainly know her words. And while she can say some things, she can't finish her thoughts sometimes.
For instance, the other day she kept saying, "Owieeee!" when I put her shoe on her foot. (Okay, D, I know your shoe is a bit small but we don't have one size bigger yet. Just deal.) But then after repeated "owies", I took her shoe off only to find a large pebble stuck in the front. Whoops! See, if she could only have just said, "Owie! My toe!" Then I would've known right away.
And now that she knows how to say, "Walk" and "tsu chuee" (outside, in Chinese) she will use it when we are somewhere (usually in a group of friends or at a friend's house) and she is bored of her current state.
Case in point, the other night our friends, R and M had us over for dinner. Of course, being the lame mother that I can be sometimes, I neglected to bring any toys for D and R and M don't have kids and kind of have a very clean house so nothing laying around for her to play with. D was fine for the first hour or two but shortly after dinner and before dessert, she kept saying, "Tsu Chuee. Tsu Chuee" That's when I know it's time to go...she's bored.
Imagine being younger and being bored and not having the words to express that she wants outta here! Hmm, perhaps life was a bit better before she knew her words...Just kidding. I really love that D can speak. Even if she is always saying, "Mama, walk." when she wants outta certain situations.

She's your very own personal playmate

The nanny. Yes, she is! It's a revelation for D today. For the first time in I don't know how many weeks, D has actually taken to her Chinese speaking nanny and has been playing with her all morning! I was JUST going to write an entry complaining about how I can't seem to get anything done. Before having a child I was great about doing the laundry - getting it all cleaned, folded and put away on the same day. Mopping the floors every week...ironing..
And yet, just yesterday I was staring at the pile of clothes that had been laundered and folded (last week), but not put away. And then I walked into the closet and sighed to see the laundered pile of clothes from months and months ago that needed ironing. I thought to myself, "Why can't I get anything done?? Laundry sits around for days before getting folded..ironing sits for months."
And now, this morning has been so productive! Got my work done, put the laundry away and finally ironed the clothes! It's a wonderful feeling. I'm finally benefitting from having a nanny twice a week.

Monday, October 4, 2010

A little sweetness

But first an Uh-oh...D fell asleep in the midst of biting into a piece of apple! This car-riding to sleep thing is like an Ambien! It lulls her right to sleep. And I thought it was really cute that she fell asleep with a bit of apple in her mouth. Thought it would be funny to keep in her mouth to show to her daddy when I got inside the house. Well....turns out not such a great idea. Dad was on a conference call and then she started kind of chewing the apple and now she's sleeping in her crib with a piece of apple in her mouth!! I tried to pry it out but every time I moved it around in her mouth, she would start chewing a bit. Oh goodness. Will try and go in again soon to dislodge it. Ayayayay...
Okay, now onto a bit of sweetness. Yesterday morning as D was playing around in her room, I was on the ground with her and I said, "Ching-ching!" (Kiss in Chinese). So she saunters over to me and ever so sweetly kisses me. Then says, "Ching-ching nose" and kisses my nose. Then, "Ching-ching eye!" and kisses my eye. Then, "Ching-ching head" and kisses my head! D then stands back with a big proud grin on her face and I, of course am beaming from happiness!
Then at breakfast, she is eating some oranges with yogurt. So she has yogurt all over her face and mouth and she says to her daddy, "Kiss! Kiss!" So he leans in and gives her a kiss and when he stands back up, she is all proud and says, "I loob you daddy!!"
Awwww!! G and I just looked at each other and were like, "Awww, that is so cuuute!!!"

Friday, October 1, 2010


D has a great sense of imagination! We have this wooden bench on our front porch and to her, it looks like a hippo! One day as she was playing on it, she just said, "Hippo. Hippo dah ha chien." Which means, "Hippo yawning." How cute is that?
Now sometimes she will just refer to the bench as Hippo! Check it out for yourself!

Round and round...

I don't know if any of you have checked out DM's blog lately. If you have, you'd see that she has this nasty little mosquito bite on her cheek that has become a terrible looking scar and then another boo-boo right by it that also has scarred. This scab thing, open wound has been plaguing us for at least a month!!! Darn Mosquitos! Wouldn't have this mess to deal with if we were living somewhere sane like LA...or SF...
Anyhoooo, D has this terrible mosquito bite that just doesn't get better because, 1) she picks at it as she is falling asleep (no bandaids can keep her from it) and 2) she often sleeps on her face and then rubs her face on the sheet and that irritates the scab too.
So, in order to avoid excess face picking I have now been relegated to driving her around and around until she falls asleep for her naps. Otherwise, if I just put her in her crib, she will just pick and pick as she is talking, singing, what not until she tires and falls asleep.
We still have the problem of her possibly picking at the scab when she awakens (in the morning or from her naps) but while I do go in there and put bandaids on her face while she is asleep, they are almost never still there when I go to get her. Sigh.
It kills us. We hate the thought of her forming a scar because of stupid little mosquito.
I have heard of parents who would drive their children around so they could fall asleep, but I had never been one that had to do it. Now I have become one and yup! It's just as I would've imagined - Annoying.