Tuesday, January 27, 2015

These are the days to remember

One of the things I regret about not keeping up this blog is that I’m losing more of my memories of the girls. For example: Maia is so sweet right now. She’s three, almost four, and she plays really well with her big sister, pretending with the My Little Ponies and building coaches and castles with the Legos and imitating Chloe’s drawings, much more sophisticated than Chloe herself was doing at this age. But her laugh is still her baby laugh, and it thrills me to hear it because every time might be the last. And I remember that Chloe’s laugh was never quite like Maia’s, but I don’t remember how it was. When did she transition from her baby laugh to the smarter, fuller, sometimes-slightly-raucous laugh she has now? I don’t remember her first year of preschool, except for some highlights. I don’t remember exactly when Maia became potty-trained. I want to write it down, so I don’t forget it. I spend so much of my time exasperated or anxious or bored with the girls, and I hate that. I want to remember how good they are, even when I can’t feel that way in the moment.

A couple of Maia moments:

Maia dresses up as Elsa almost every day. She and Chloe were Elsa and Anna for Halloween—the warm versions, Elsa at coronation and Anna in her winter dress. Chloe already had an Anna dress-up dress, so I bought Maia an Elsa dress from China off eBay and made them cloaks and headgear (Anna’s hat for Chloe and a yarn wig for Maia). I figured they would enjoy them at Halloween (which they did—they had three or four different Halloween dress-up events and rocked them) and maybe dress up again once or twice and they’d be done. If I’d known Maia would be living in her costume I would have sprung for a handmade dress from Etsy rather than the cheap eBay version. I would also have actually finished the edges of the cloak instead of just cutting them and leaving them. (It’s made of fleece, with some flannel edging fused on, so this was permissible for something that wasn’t going to get a lot of wear.) It was fine through Halloween and a bit beyond, but the edging is suffering now. The dress is holding up very well, however.

"Can I have my snowflake necklace?" she asked one day while in this getup. "It gives me ice powers!" Then, "But only pretend. I don't really have ice powers."

I'm working from home now, and the girls have yet to internalize that shouting upstairs at me when they want something is no longer going to work. (This isn't so bad when Eric's home; but he teaches one afternoon a week.) Today I got on the phone with someone and heard Chloe yelling "Mom! Mom! Mom!" I slammed the door (which the phone on mute) to respond. Pretty soon came a persistent knocking. I used mute again and yelled, "Go away, I'm on the phone!" I'm a charming mother. When the call was done I went down and explained that they cannot shout at me because I will not answer, and if I don't it is appropriate to silently open the door to see whether I'm on the phone or in a rage-induced seizure. (I didn't say that last part.) Chloe nodded. I returned to work. Sometime later Maia came up and crept to my side. "I came up to ask you something because I knew I wasn't supposed to shout," she said humbly. Then she asked me to take out Twilight Sparkle's ponytail.