Sunday, July 31, 2005

I can't keep up!

Sari was walking around on Friday with her stomach thrust out. Dovid assumed she was pretending to be pregnant. When Dovid asked her, she said, "No. I'm Daddy!"

Friday afternoon, we took the kids to a medical specialist - one of those doctors that takes 25 minutes to say what can be said in 5. Clearly impressed, Mordechai interrupted his rambling, saying, "You know a lot about this stuff!" (I'm reminded of the time when my brother- I can't remember which one- asked our pediatrician if he charges by the hour.)

On our way back into our apartment building, Sari pressed one of the buzzers at the entrance before I was able to stop her. She likes to press the buzzer in the lower left-hand corner. I remarked to Dovid "Those poor people!" Mordechai, overhearing me, looked puzzled and asked, "How do you know those people are poor?"

A smile a minute!

Okay, okay. You asked for it!

That's Sari peeking out from the "yellow playground" at Tiferes Moshe.

At Ima's house for a July 4th barbeque with the Bernstein's and Avigail Gartner's kids, too!

One of the biggest hits of this summer: a trip on a city bus! Mordechai is totally in love with mass transit. We didn't even go anywhere due to inclement weather. We actually just rode the bus and got picked up by Savta! The trip was a huge success.

Here is Ada gearing up for a kiss.

Please take note of the polkes (thighs) - my pride and joy.

How do you get this dumb car to work?!

Friday, July 29, 2005

Cuteness update

Ada has been ambulating now for a while. The reason I chose that particular word is she doesn't do any standard form of ambulating such as crawling, cruising, or walking. No, no. She stays in a sitting position, puts out her right leg and left arm and scoots along on her tushie. It is amazing how quickly she can get around!

She's also learned to kiss. She seems to invest much concentration and effort in the task. She pulls in her upper lip (much more than necessary) and lets an adorable little smack out. Her mommy and anyone with an iota of humanity melt immediately.

These past few minutes have been devoted to trying to make a little car go. It's one of those cars that wind up when you pull it back on its wheels and then shoot forward some distance when you let go. Obviously, although she is a natural genius, she has not quite mastered this technique. So she's been throwing it over and over trying to make it work.

My brownie boy (that would be Mordechai, who is so tanned he could be easily mistaken for an Indian) is loving day camp. Every day they learn a new game - classics like musical chairs, gaga, soccer, who stole the cookie, telephone, dry-dry-wet, freeze dance. Mordechai was the freeze dance champ. I'm beaming with pride.

He's been keeping up his academic pursuits, as well. The other day he looked at the clock and noticed it was 6:43. Dovid was due home at 7:20. He insisted on staying up, saying, "Dad's coming home in 37 minutes. I wanna' wait up for him." Helloooo! He's 5 1/2!

The funny thing is that Sari copies him and will ask me when I'm on my way out, "How many more minutes you coming home?" The difference is, she's perfectly satisfied with any answer I give, be it 25 minutes or 8 hours. Mordechai will signal his approval or disapproval of the proposed length of my absence. He will also chastise me if I'm late. The pressure I live with! You have no idea.

Sari's personality is absolutely magnetic. She leaves a trail of love-struck people in her wake wherever she goes. Her current favorite activity is playing with her doll. She announces who she is for the play session and the name of the baby that goes with her character. She is so creative, it's fantastic.

These kids are such a joy. Thank G-d for His blessings.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Oh, darn. They miss me.

A postcard came in yesterday's mail and it was addressed to me in a cutesy, curvy handwritten script. I felt the usual excitement (something I haven't shaken since my childhood) of receiving mail that was not in the junk mail, bills, or financial investment updates categories. I eagerly turned over the card and read: We miss you and simply hope all is well with you. Signed, Curves.


Curves is the name of the "gym" of which I am a member. That is, I am charged the monthly membership fee. Clearly, I have not been there in too long. They miss me. How sweet. I was kinda hoping no one would notice my absence.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

This stuff is cool!

For those of you who require some catching up: Google Maps is fast becoming the first choice of many people looking for places and directions. One nice feature is that you can easily pan the map in any direction without reloading the whole page (and we already know how klutzy Mapquest can be with that). If that's not enough to make you check it out, this should do it: Click on satellite and you will see an actual aerial photo of the location that you specify. Zoom in far enough and you can pick out your house on the street. Check out my address - mine's the top window at the left-hand corner of the building. See me waving?

Today's update is the cool addition of Google Moon, in honor of the anniversary of the first manned Moon landing. Make sure to zoom in all the way. Guaranteed chuckle.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

It's a boy!

Penina (and Nachum) gave birth this afternoon to a baby boy. Why do we say baby boy or baby girl as if anyone has ever given birth to a toddler or an adolescent? Seems to be rather superfluous. But I digress. The baby weighed in at 6 lb. 10 oz. and, according to his mother, is beautiful. We Mays from down the hall would like to extend a hearty Mazal Tov and can't wait to meet BJ. (We can still call him BJ after he gets a real name, right?) Lots of love and here's hoping you get your own digital camera speedily, in our days, amen.

Ears and Cars

What do the two have to do with each other? Funny you should ask. I was just planning to tell you. I spend a lot of time in the car. Actually, the time I spend in the car is the ideal time for me to "take care of business" that requires use of a telephone. Obviously, this necessitates the use of a cell phone (or, as Sari calls it, a "celephone"). This in turn necessitates the use of a hands-free device a.k.a. an earphone. Herein lies the problem. The earphones that are on the market are too large. Either that, or my ears are too small. The very clever manufacturers of these devices think they have solved this issue by creating a hook that presumably rests around the ear and keeps the earphone IN YOUR EAR. Hah! They are far from having solved the problem! In fact, they're headed in the wrong direction. They used to make headsets that had headbands and worked like the old-fashioned headphones. Now, when I try to purchase a set of those, salespeople look at me like I've just stepped off a time machine from the past and shake their heads sadly. So the upshot of the whole affair is that I have one hand on the phone, dialing and such, and the other hand is holding the earpiece to my ear and the steering wheel is left to do as it sees fit! Thank G-d these hands-free laws are in place to protect our safety. I'm sure driving hands-free is a huge improvement!

Friday, July 15, 2005

Scissors, needle, and thread

There's something so primitive and barbaric about oral surgery. Cut gum, pry out tooth, stitch up gaping hole, tie a knot to hold thread in place. Despite all the shiny metal equipment in the office, there's no hiding the fact that things haven't changed all that much from the days of Tom Sawyer. Oh, and the pain. Did I mention the pain?

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Scent of a Woman

Page 10 of one "Scratch and Sniff" book poses the question: Do you like the scent of this perfume? Sari dutifully scratches and sniffs and responds: "Mmmm. Smells like a lady!"

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

This, my dear friends, is a large part of the problem

A loyal reader was a bit disturbed by yesterday's post. "Are you sure you want just any person to know that?" she asked. And I ask, know what? That I'm not perfect? That we humans are fallible? That everyone has their good days and bad days? I don't feel like pretending to be perfect. It's a large part of what I believe is a problem in our "perfect" community. It's so taboo to have any problems. Take my experience as a young new mom. I felt so overwhelmed and there were days when I was ready to tear my hair out (or worse) because the baby wouldn't stop crying and I hadn't had more than 90 consecutive sleeping minutes in too long. I remember thinking, why does everyone else seem to handle it so well? I was blown away when a friend commented on how well I was adjusting to mommyhood. I realized I was contributing to the problem: I wasn't being honest. I was showing the world a face that didn't reflect the truth. Since then, I have made a small difference in many a new mom's life. I see the look of relief in a girl's eyes when I talk about how difficult the adjustment normally is. Key word: normally. Yes, it's normal to be overwhelmed. Yes, it's normal to have days where things don't go as planned. Yes, it's okay to take off your supermom cape and be human.

So, yes, dear readers, I am human and imperfect. I hope you can still respect me!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Mama said there'd be days like this

That's what I get for being so high on my superb mothering skills. The first two days of the week went so well. Everyone was so well-behaved, things went according to schedule, and lots of hugs, kisses, and smiles all 'round. I was so pleased.

Today was a little different. I did all the laundry (I hate laundry) and had an annual at my ob-gyn (what could be more fun?). Sari was whiny all day, using baby talk, and doing things like spilling cupfuls of water on the floor and stomping in the resultant puddles. Time out did not faze her in the slightest. She is such a firecracker, that one. In a last ditch effort to salvage my self-image, I took the kids to the park which was okay. After I got Mordechai and Ada to bed and Sari was out of bed for the fourth time in as many minutes, I took her on my lap and relaxed a little. She really is such a mush and, as all you amateur shrinks are muttering, she was just craving attention after all. Who doesn't crave attention? Heck, isn't that what started this whole blog business in the first place? We played "If You're Happy and You Know It" inserting hugs and kisses once the claps and hurrays were exhausted. I felt a little better but I still made Dovid put her to sleep having no patience left for her inevitable antics.

Writing all this (with a glass of wine at my elbow) has really soothed my nerves a bit. Thanks, Internet. Good night.

Why Women Cry

This was lifted from AidelMaidel but she stole it first so I don't feel quite so bad. Here it is:

A little boy asked his mother, "Why are you crying?" "Because I'm a woman," she told him.

"I don't understand," he said.His Mom just hugged him and said, "And you never will."

Later the little boy asked his father, "Why does mother seem to cry for no reason?"

" All women cry for no reason," was all his dad could say.

The little boy grew up and became a man, still wondering why women cry.

Finally he put in a call to G-d. When G-d got on the phone, he asked, "G-d, why do women cry so easily?" G-d said " When I made the woman she had to be special.

I made her shoulders strong enough to carry the weight of the world, yet gentle enough to give comfort.

I gave her an inner strength to endure childbirth and the rejection that many times comes from her children.

I gave her a hardness that allows her to keep going when everyone else gives up, and take care of her family through sickness and fatigue without complaining..

I gave her the sensitivity to love her children under any and all circumstances, even when her child has hurt her very badly.

I gave her strength to carry her husband through his faults and fashioned her from his rib to protect his heart.

I gave her wisdom to know that a good husband never hurts his wife, but sometimes tests her strengths and her resolve to stand beside him unfalteringly.

And finally, I gave her a tear to shed. This is hers exclusively to use whenever it is needed."

"You see my son," said G-d, "the beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair.

The beauty of a woman must be seen in her eyes, because that is the doorway to her heart - the place where love resides."

Monday, July 04, 2005

Our trip to the NY Aquarium

Special thanks to our Savta!

Penguins are so cute!

The kids loved the sea lion show.

note to Ada: I know you'll hate me for this one day but you look so cute I can't help myself. Please find it in your heart to forgive a love-stricken mom.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Like a queen

Mordechai came home from day camp (on time). As is my custom, I asked who today's Shabbat Ima and Abba were. He told me Chaya Esti was Shabbat Ima. After a thoughtful pause, he added, "She looks like a queen." I was taken by surprise at this first sign of true love (isn't he a bit young, I thought). What gave him that impression, I asked. He answered that "she wears cool earrings." (I breathed a sigh of relief.

This one's for you, New Orleans!

(Excerpted from "The Kosher Palette")

1/2 c. margarine
3/4 c. sugar
1 large egg
1-1/4 c. flour
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon

Beat margarine until fluffy. Gradually add sugar. Beat in egg. Add flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt to margarine mixture, beating until blended. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. (Feed children dinner, gently threatening that if they don't finish their chicken they can't help with the cookies when that timer rings!) Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Form the dough into walnut-sized balls, roll in cinnamon mixture and put on ungreased baking sheets (line with parchment paper to avoid unnecessary clean-up). Bake for 10-12 minutes until cookies are flat and edges are a bit brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Love and kisses from New York!