Thursday, November 05, 2009

I Wear My Sunglasses at Night

I think Aunt Becca is EGR’s favorite aunt because she lets her play in her purse. It is one of Ella’s favorite past times. She has good stuff in there. Lipsticks, receipts, credit cards, body spray, and sunglasses. Aunt Becca came to Grandpop’s house Saturday night to see the little Sprout, and this time instead of just emptying and sorting the contents of the purse, EG actually put it to good use. She grabbed the sunglasses first and put them right on the top of her head like she’s been doing it all her (long) life. Then she found the lipstick and pretended to put it on her lips. She pulled out the wallet and found the receipts so she could balance the checkbook. Then she decided it was too bright in Grandpop’s house, so she put those glasses on her face. Of course, the paparazzi was there to capture all of it on film.

We have most definitely entered the world of make believe. There are times when I watch her play and I know that she has created an entire little world around herself. It goes beyond pretending to feed the babies and stuffed animals. She now puts on makeup, gets herself ready with her purses and hat, loads her car and gets in it. She will run back and forth from the cabinet, “filling” one cup from various other cups to create a concoction only she can explain. Sometimes she pretends to throw things away – making trips back and forth to the garbage can holding invisible bits of trash. She also fills plates and bowls in this same manner. Dave tried giving her actual trash to throw away, but she ignored it in favor of her game. I love to watch her play this way and try to figure out what she is thinking.

She recently developed a love for coloring, probably due to the Sunday school lessons she’s been participating in. (Can I get a Hallelujah! about the fact that she’s stayed in Sunday school and Wednesday night Bible study for two weeks in a row without crying?) I set her up in her high chair with some paper and crayons the other night while I sat at the table and wrote thank you notes. She colored all over that paper, then put her crayons back in the box when she was finished (this is another topic entirely). We stuck her picture on the fridge and put the crayons away in the junk drawer. The next night, she scurried into the kitchen when we got home, pulled that picture off the fridge and went to the junk drawer for the crayons. Now we have two pictures on the fridge. I like this new interest; it’s creative and it keeps her busy, though she does get distressed when the crayons don’t go back in the box easily. The walls of my house will soon be papered with her artwork.

The child has developed a rather disturbing 16 month-old behavior. She picks up and straightens things. How will I be able to maintain a modicum of general disarray if both my husband and my child need every thing to have a place and be in its place? I guess I’ll rest easy in the fact that this new habit doesn’t seem to apply to her toys except in special circumstances. They are usually still strewn from one end of the house to the other. Seriously though, she made me do a double take when I saw her put her toys back in the hat box they live in, put the lid on it, and put it back on the stack where it stays at Grandma’s house so we could go home the other night. All with absolutely no prompting from anyone. When I saw her move the dog’s food bowl three feet from where it was to where it was supposed to be in a completely absent-minded gesture, I groaned inside. Then she followed her Da into the bathroom so she could straighten the rug he kicked up, and I later watched her pick up the couch pillows from the floor and put them back on the couch. All of these were sort of casual, absent-minded things she did on her way to whatever she was planning to do. Weird. Yes, she sees me do these things in the same absent-minded manner, but it took years of training and self-discipline to make me that way, and Dave will tell you that I still love a pile of clutter. He told me the other night that I will be in trouble when she starts cleaning up after me and I can’t find a thing. He’s absolutely right. Maybe she’ll at least put my things away instead in the middle of the bed where I’ll be forced to deal with the pile like he does.

Finally, though I believe it is a double-edged sword, I’ve been trying to teach her to dress herself. Mostly I just dress her while she stands or sits instead of on the changing table where she is contained. It makes the chore more interesting when I have to follow her around with her clothing, or trap her in my legs, but at least she’s actively participating now. Last night I wrestled her diaper on her, then thought, “What the heck?” and tossed her Tinkerbell shirt at her with instructions to put it on. When I turned back around from whatever I was doing, she had one arm in. She got distracted at that point, so I helped with the rest of the process, but I did tell her to pull up her pants and she did it for the very first time. This is double-edged because having the ability to dress herself is one step closer to potty readiness, but it will also mean she has the ability to undress herself. Since the child frequently asks to have her clothes removed, I’m thinking nakedness might present an issue in the future. In public of course; I couldn’t care less if she wears clothes in the house.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Crocs with Socks: A Story of a Young Shoe Diva

The Shelby Baptist Association is running a Christmas Gift Shop fundraiser store – think flea market, but cheaper. Retailers in the area donated truck loads of holiday and seasonal items left over from last Christmas and Thanksgiving, so the Shelby Baptist Association is selling it at super low prices to raise money for their Christmas Gift Shop program. Reports say that they have everything in any color you could want. I’ve heard tell that ladies have filled 3 giant bags chock full of Christmas decorations for the bargain basement price of $40.

It is one of Ella’s favorite places to shop, so she and Grandmother go there often. The decided to go yesterday despite the fact that pickings are slim now that the holidays are upon us. Oh, what a fateful day it was for EGR. A day that I can only imagine she’s been patiently waiting on for quite some time. As they entered the door of the store, she spotted them – the long sought-after pink crocs. Oh, yes, I believe she’s been looking everywhere we go for pink crocs like Mama’s as she often tries to wear mine around the house. She was beside herself with glee, trying to climb out of the buggy as Grandmother was putting her into it. Nothing else would do but to search the racks for a pair in her size.

They found a pair in size 5 that seemed to do okay, and a pair of size 7 that were too big for her to wear right now. There were no size 6, but she was adamant, so they purchased the 5s for only $1. She tried and tried to put them on as they browsed through the aisles, but they were tied together. Finally, at checkout, the cashier cut them apart and Grandmother put them on her feet. She proudly wore them all day – only taking them off for nap time with the promise that she could put them back on as soon as she woke up. She did indeed march straight to the crocs and insist on wearing them once the nap was finished. She even pointed to them and said, “Shoes Mama!” I don’t know if that meant she wanted to show them to me, or that she has shoes like Mama’s, but she was ready to show them off when I got home.

She wore them until bath time, and this morning she brought them to me when it was time to put on shoes. Of course, since it’s sock season, she is committing the fashion faux pas of wearing them with socks, but I believe I am powerless in this matter. They are just on the brink of too small, but she doesn’t seem to care right now. I will not be at all surprised if I get home tonight to find a pair of size 7s so that she’ll have some to grow into. They are pink with pink leopard print fabric around the edges and insoles, and she loves them so. She does love shoes.