Friday, October 30, 2009

Cowgirl Carolyn

Halloween party -- part two.

Actually, the kids in Carolyn's school aren't allowed to go in costume. I have a feeling some kids (and maybe parents) might get a tiny bit carried away. But it's totally fine, because for Fall Festival kids can dress as a farmer or cowboy(girl).

And that means two costumes for Halloween. Yipee Yahoo!!!!!

I went to Farm and Fleet yesterday just to buy a red paisley bandana to tie around Carolyn's neck. I had very low standards of farmer/ cowgirl-ness. But then I saw these very cute, very pink overalls and I said, "We only live once."

Totally the right decision. There will come a day when it won't be cool to wear pink overalls and a giant cowboy hat.

Today is not that day : )

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Princess Penelope

And the parade of princesses begins.

Today Penny had her Halloween party. She was so excited, she got ready and informed us that she would sit on the couch until it was time to go. Then we left for school 20 minutes early, walking slowly through the neighborhood, meandered around the school and finally went inside a solid five minutes before the next person arrived.

And the next person was Cinderella. And then Sleeping Beauty. Finally... Ariel.

Did I mention Penny was Belle.

It seems these 3-year-old's got to talking and made sure that all the major princesses were represented, and none duplicated. Pretty impressive if you ask me.

And they were all super cute. Especially Princess Penelope Belle.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A new church activity

I took Carolyn and Penny to church today by myself. It helps to bribe them with candy I leave waiting in the car. Even so, I was delighted at how well-behaved they were.

But there is this one thing Carolyn likes to do that's sort of disturbing. She likes to take the church bulletin and cross out the faces of everybody in it. So as I sit there listening to Monseigneur address frivolous prayer (a homily that, for once, really spoke to me and didn't make me raging mad like his rants about health care or politics), Carolyn quietly x's the faces of fellow parishioners.

I just asked her why she likes to do this. "Just for fun." I think there's some things that are better left not said.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The New Energy Czar (of our house)

Carolyn has discovered eco-friendliness. Sure I've been nearly car free for two years. Sure I line dry all our clothes. Sure I make my own laundry detergent.

But go ahead and guess where she learned it. Go ahead. Guess.

That's right. Because nothing can teach a child like the loving touch of the Internet.

This games she plays has the character walking around the house, answering questions about what's more energy efficient. Regular light bulbs v. florescent light bulbs. (Carolyn actually informed me that we needed to change all our light bulbs because we weren't using the right kind, which we are.) Hybrid v. regular car. (hahahahaha.) Front loading dryer v. top loading dryer.

When I was printing work off the computer yesterday, Carolyn started screaming, "You're wasting. You're wasting."

And nothing tops off a good eco-lashing like a trip to the recycling center when she "discovers" all her precious homework pages (all 100 pages of them) in the recycling bin. Good thing she was there to rescue all that precious paper.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The other night at dinner, Carolyn excused herself to use the bathroom. Before she left, she told me.

"When I get back to the table, I'd like some bread on my plate. With butter."

She didn't actually SAY "or else..." but I could see it in her eyes.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Competitive parenting

Remember when your baby was first born and he/she was perfect? Nobody could match the perfection of this tiny, perfect child.

And then, like, a week later, you started listening to the "milestones" about smiling, rolling over, sitting up, saying mama, walking, talking, doing advanced math, spotting major constellations, identifying the ingredients in mole, blah, blah, blah.

Well, if you happen to be a comparer, let me tell you, it doesn't get any better. Now I'm in major overdrive of comparing Carolyn to every single kid she comes into contact with. I do it at swimming. At school. At the playground.

I am deeply engrossed in the sport of competitive parenting, and there really is no winner. Which sort of sucks, because competitive people like to win.

This is so totally not the fault of Carolyn, who is awesome, and I fully acknowledge this fact. But when her handwriting is less than perfect and her swimming is downright horrible, I cast blame and look for fault in my own parenting. Her failings become my failings and that makes me angry.

But who wants to be an angry person. Or worse, an angry mom. And I am fully aware that this will not improve in the coming years. Competition will only get worse, and pretty soon, even Carolyn might come to realize it.

This blog really has no point other than to admit my shortcoming and try to work on it. Children are not direct reflections of their parents. They have their own road to walk, most of the time without a grownup to hold their hands. And instead of being ultra-critical (my very best specialty) I will work on being ultra-supportive and only give a push every once in a while, because I'm not about to give up altogether.

But since she's only 5, and not trying out for the Olympics next year or applying to Harvard the year after next, I'll give her a break and let her enjoy all these new things in her life.

I will try very, very hard.