I love my kid because she’s weird. And because her weirdness causes her to engage in early morning didgeridoo playing. Which is awesome.
Want to know one of the main reasons I don’t want to send my kids to school? Coffee time.
Ok, not coffee time specifically, but what coffee time represents. Coffee time, Thursday mornings in the lounge at the church. Everyone takes turns bringing food which sometimes means homemade banana bread from a woman who’s been perfecting the recipe for half a century and sometimes means Einstein Bagels that a college kid picked up on his way here from class. Sometimes there’s 5 people, sometimes 20. Alway’s there is coffee.
Coffee time may be one of my favorite times of the week. I love the fact that the age span is usually 80+ years. I love the conversations which cover everything from the most important of spiritual matters to the most hilarious of Chuck Norris jokes. I love that nobody judges the pastor of 60 years and nobody judges this young tattooed and pierced mom who isn’t comfortable calling herself a Christian. I love that we can all take an hour out of our busy busy lives to sit down together and just be. I love the community.
I love that I have learned some of the most profound things in my life on Thursday mornings in this room and I love when Peter (the older man on the couch in the back of the picture) weaves a story into a lesson on how we are called to be better than we are and I see Verona taking in every word.
If my kids are in school all day they’ll have the chance to gain knowledge, but if they can come here they’ll have the chance to gain wisdom (and probably plenty of knowledge too).
In the end, I think wisdom is pretty damn important.
I want my kids to grow up learning more than just long division. I want my kids to experience LIFE! And the wonder and beauty that is the people around them! I want my kids to experience FULLNESS and RICHNESS and COMMUNITY! Because in the end if all you know is long division you’re going to be missing out on a lot.
This afternoon Verona decided to give a concert for the dogs.
Verona’s been really interested in instruments lately so we’ve been exploring the ones we have around the house which between me and David include a flute, clairnet, guitar, piano, harmonica, various drums and other percussion instruments, two violins, and more than one box full of kids instruments.
She’s fallen in love with the flute above the rest (other than maybe the piano which she plays every day). She likes to run around blowing on it… not where the you actually blow on a flute but she’s having fun so who cares… and she likes making me blow it and then punching keys so it makes different notes.
I love this kid.
Being home all the live long day without much option of going places thanks to our rapidly shrinking budget and the ever expanding price of bus tickets means The Girl gets bored as hell… and by The Girl I mean me… but really I mean both of us… we’re both bored as hell… anyway….
The downside is that means I’m constantly trying to find new things to amuse her, the upside is she’s a toddler and therefore really easily amused.
She loves anything with bubbles so yesterday I came up with the idea that I would put food coloring and soap in multiple trays outside and spray the hose in them so we’d have trays of different colored bubbles. Awesome, right? As it turns out the bubbles all stay normal stupid bubble color, they just float on top of different colored water… which kinda bummed me out but didn’t bother her at all.
No, that’s not blood all over her, it’s red food coloring.
She had a blast going crazy with the bubbles… throwing them all over, rubbing them on herself/myself/the porch/the dog, slapping handfuls of the different bubbles together so they exploded. There is a line in the movie Knocked Up where the dad says “Look at how much my kids love bubbles. They fucking love bubbles. I wish I loved anything in my life as much as my kids love bubbles.” I’ll second that statement, but not in a depressing sense like I just don’t love anything very much… no, she just loves bubbles SO MUCH MORE than I ever would have thought possible.
Eventually she found the bottles of food coloring and discovered that she could essentially draw on the bubbles with them.
Which quickly gave way to the realization that she could also draw all over herself with them… and all over me too of course.
Through none of this, however, did I realize that food coloring will stain skin. Especially the red. For whatever reason the red adamantly refuses to come out no matter how hard you beg, plead, or swear at it. So despite a long long bath with scrubbing that could possibly qualify as assault she still looks a little bit like a one woman crime scene.
Such is life.
A few of the everyday things we’ve been doing a lot of lately.
A lot of reading outside since it’s finally not ungodly hot.
Drinking fantastic beer since I’m not pregnant anymore.
Playing in the mud while we wash all the dog cages/beds/bowls before it gets too cold.
Loving on Colic McCrankyPants.
The conversation I just had with Verona while she had Finnegan took a bath:
Verona- “Finnegan have weird belly button. But cord fall down. Now have normal belly button.”
Me- “Yeah, the stump of his umbilical cord fell off. It happens to all babies, it happened to you too when you were a baby.”
Verona- ”Finnegan have normal belly button now. Verona have belly button. Mommy have belly button.”
Me- “Yep, we all have belly buttons.”
Verona- “Finnegan not have weird belly button now…”
(she stares at Finn for a few moments)
“but Finnegan have weird vagina.”
This is what preschool civics class looks like.
We went downtown today to join in at the Occupy Phoenix demonstrations. It was a really fun group of people, unlike a lot of other rallies or protests I’ve been at it was so full of hope (and so incredibly organized… which I expected the exact opposite of).
There were musicians all over playing for the crowds, there were a ton of other families with kids so Verona made plenty of new friends, and artists creating all sorts of different things including one guy who was doing the most amazing things with sidewalk chalk I’ve ever seen.
He had a bunch of extra chalk so all the kids could join in the fun, including Verona of course. That’s just the kind of atmosphere it was.
There were several people who brought their pets out, mostly dogs but there were a couple cats too. (They, of course, got SO MUCH love from all the little kids.)
At meal times people from the community who, for whatever reason, couldn’t spend a lot of time at the rally itself but wanted to support it would bring big trays of homemade food down for everybody.
When meals were served all the other protesters would have the families go through first so if there wasn’t enough food for everyone the small children got some. Looking at the amount of food sitting there it would always appear that there could not possibly be enough for everyone but scoop after scoop, plate after plate, people would go through the line and somehow there always ended up being plenty… enough for people to go have seconds even.
The day ended as any such day should end… with a big impromptu dance party.
When I found out Jessica over at The Bohemian Bowmans was writing a book about parenting I knew I had to read it, I ended up being lucky enough to get an advanced copy to review… huzzah!
Jessica is a writer, blogger, and mother of four wild things that inspired the book, Parenting Wild Things – Embracing the Rumpus.
Well needless to say it was great, but since I don’t think I have it in me to write one of those cheesy book reviews (and lets face it, they almost aways end up sounding like a cheesy commercial) I’ll just go ahead and tell you why it was so awesome.
1. Most parenting books I’ve read are written by “experts” (whatever the hell that means) and take the tone of ”Here, for all you lowly parents who never could have come up with these words of wisdom on your own, are all the things you’ve been doing so far to mess up your kids. Better start doing what I say soon before they’re ruined for life.” Jessica, on the other hand, never claims expert status or to have all the answers but instead is honest with stories of her own mistakes, and the whole book reads like words of wisdom from the mom you’re friends with who’s been around the block a few times more than you. No mommy guilt involved, just the feeling of “Huh, those are some good ideas I could incorporate into what I’m doing.
2. It’s no secret I have a torrid love-hate relationship with Christianity and the church in general and if you would have told me I’d be a fan of a Christian parenting book, given the ones I’ve seen I would have been skeptical at best. This book in contrast to those others quotes applicable scriptures that have actually been thought through instead of just regurgitated from the plethora of (in my case eye roll inducing) Christian literature out there. Because of her humble and non-judgemental stance I would have no problem recommending it to my non-Christian friends as well.
3. It presents ideas, thoughts, and options rarely if ever seen in the mainstream parenting world making it great especially for new parents or anyone who thinks there might be another way out there but hasn’t found it.
4. It’s succinct, easy to read, broken into nice small chapters that can be read in between running after your own Wild Things, available in PDF format that you can read right on your computer like I did and soon on Kindle, and did I mention it’s only $5?
Anyone who’s interested head on over to check out Parenting Wild Things. Speaking of Wild Things, mine just crawled out the dog door so I gotta go.
My new best friend in terms of keeping Verona entertained, edible paint. I wanted to give her a chance to get her creative on with something other than crayons but didn’t want to give her regular paint because she eats everything she finds so instead I just made banana pudding with food coloring… easy, super fun, and now I have extra pudding in the fridge.
For the sake of my sanity I put her outside with just a diaper (so I could just hose everything down afterward) where she smeared, dribbled, and experimented.
Eventually she realized how tasty the paint was and the art had to be fit in between lots of chowing down.
She then decided to forgo her traditional paper canvas in favor of a more lively one…
…so she painted Barney, who was more than willing.
Here are her finished masterpieces…
…and this is how the afternoon ended.
Nothing is cooler than watching a kid have a big “ah ha!” moment.
This afternoon Verona was outside playing in the dog’s water bowl… because you know, all the toys that grandma and grandpa can send will never compare to a plastic dish filled with dirty water and dog saliva. Anyway, I found the plastic cap off a sprinkler toy and a big green spoon with holes in it to splash around with.
After a while she said she wanted me to come play with her so I put down my camera and did. I would scoop water into the spoon and hold it up so it drizzled out the holes making two thin streams of water. She would immediately want to hold it but when she would take the handle the spoon would tilt sideways and all the water would fall out. We did this over and over again and every time she would look at me like “What are you some sort of wizard? Why does it work for you and not for me?” Then on maybe the 20th time instead of taking the handle of the spoon she grabbed the sides of it with both hands so it stayed level. Lo and behold, in accordance to the known laws of physics the water did not fall out over the side but instead drizzled out slowly through the holes in the bottom.
The look on her face was priceless! You could almost hear her screaming “I figured it out! I figured it out!” Needless to say I was almost as excited by her joy as she was by this revelation of the way the world works.
She did her new trick for a while and then we spent half an hour making footprints on the sidewalk together. Life is wonderful.