Random Thoughts: The Children’s Updates Edition

Michael continues to develop apace. He is in constant motion — the child just walks and walks and walks and walks. Oh, and if there is something to climb, he climbs. He has no fear.

He is trying to run, which is too funny to even try to describe.

His superpower is finding the exact thing in the room he shouldn’t have. Often this is the TV remote or a phone; sometimes, it’s a pen or marker; most of the time, it’s whatever choking hazard he stumbles upon. So that plus the climbing thing is a lot of fun.

He STILL won’t say mama, although he’s starting to realize I am not “da-deee”. He sometimes says “Ta-ta” (Tadone) and I swear he said “Bella” the other day.

Every bird is a duck and says, “kack kack kack.”

He says, “Hi” but not like that, he says it like a breathy teenage girl who’s just run up to me: “Hhhaaaiiii.” He says it with his mouth wide open and his arms reaching up for me. Maybe that’s what he’ll call me now: “Hhhaaiii.”

He is a good, good baby boy. He has transitioned well to the new day care, where, according to the women there, “all he wants to do is play.” He is quiet, they tell me, not fussy, and he eats and naps without trouble. God bless him.

As well as he is doing at day care, I have to say, he’s definitely having separation anxiety at home. I can’t leave the room. He has also been *crashing* at night, much, much earlier than previously. Which I’m not complaining about, because it means 7 to 8 p.m. I can devote to the girls (mostly), so that’s nice.


Kate, my Kate, turned 5, and went to her well-child visit in good spirits. She was cheerful, goofy, and cooperative. She’s tall for her age — not surprisingly. At 45.5″ she’s in the 94th percentile.

And in good health. Shots were traumatic, I think in part because she wanted so much to be brave, and ultimately she was startled by how much they hurt.

And let me tell you something about Kate: for a tall, skinny belle, she is freaking strong.

The good news is: no more shots for six years. Whew.


Kate also proved her strength at gymnastics. She hung from the uneven bars, chin-up position, for 35 seconds. Her teacher said, and I quote, “She’s really got it. She’s a beast.”

Now I would like to encourage Kate to continue on with gymnastics (or try tae kwon do or karate) instead of signing up for soccer. Not quite sure how to do that just yet. Not sure if I *should* do that. But I kinda want to.


I can describe Flora in one word these days: hair-trigger. (Okay, one hyphenated adjectival phrase.)

I’m working on it, because I need the two of us to get along better. Especially evenings, when it’s 3-on-1.


Flora is learning the art of the suck up, I will give her that. She’s been practicing on her pushover father for *years*, so I shouldn’t be surprised.

Friday night, we were at Bella and Tadone’s house. My MIL (aka Bella) had picked up Flora because she had a half-day of school, and had offered to cook dinner. As we were eating, Flora asked me, “Can we have a sleep over?”

I told her it was up to her Bella.

“Bella, can we have a sleep over? By the way, this dinner is delicious. I love your chili.”

Bella said yes.


As a stark contrast to our evenings, mornings when I drive Flora to school are delightful. Sometimes she reads books (she is especially enjoying Everything On It by Shel Silverstein — she recited a whole poem from memory the other day), and sometimes she’ll sit in pensive silence broken by urgent questions.

“Mom, are there diseases that make you see spots?”
Answer: “If you are going to faint, you can see spots in front of your eyes. Sometimes if you have a high fever, you can hallucinate — that means to see things that aren’t there.”

“Mom, how come monkeys’ feet look like hands?”
Answer: “Because that’s how God made them. So they can hang onto tree branches while they eat.”

“Mom, can I go sponge jumping?”
“What is that?” I was thinking it was something maybe they do in gym.
“You know, sponge jumping. You jump off something on a long rope and when you reach the end you bounce up.”
“You mean bungee jumping.”
“Yeah, bungee jumping. Can I do that?”
OVER MY DEAD BODY. No, that’s not what I said. What I said was, “When you are an adult. And don’t tell me about it if you’re going to do it. I’ll worry too much.”
“Why will you worry?”
“I will worry that you will get hurt” AND DIE, FLORA. YOU DON’T WANT TO DIE, DO YOU?
“Okay. I won’t tell you.”


What conversation or observation made you laugh this week?

3 thoughts on “Random Thoughts: The Children’s Updates Edition

  1. I cannot say enough awesome things about Tae Kwon-Do and our dojang. It’s not inexpensive (we pay $83/mo for classes year round, $55 for each test – and that’s every 2 months, and whatever else for gear). But I find the money to be totally worth it. I’m not sure which location is closest to you (Bellevue?) http://youngbrotherstkd.com/locations.html but I have been very pleased with Liam’s instruction there.

    That said, I know lots of other parents whose kids are involved in TKD that don’t go to Young Brothers and are very happy where they are.

    • Thank you for the recommendation. I really have to look into this. One of the reasons I like gymnastics and want to look into TKD is to help Kate channel her energy and control her body. She is a rambunctious child, and I think soccer will be too much of a free-for-all for her. Soccer’s been good for Flora because she is tall and fast and learning team work. It seems to me that Kate’s need in the realm of the physical are different.

      Those costs don’t seem prohibitive. Where is the equipment sold?

      • My dojang sold it to us. We got the dobak (uniform) when we signed up as part of the contract. After he passed his first belt test (to earn a yellow stripe) we had to purchase sparring equipment and patches for the uniform – all of which cost somewhere between $130 and $150. I have forgotten the exact amount. He is still wearing that same sparring equipment although I did have to get him a new dobak because he got too big for the old one. We got one a bit big for him so there’s room to grow and that ran around $50.

        One of the tenets of TKD is “Self-Control” and it’s really been worthwhile for Liam to learn that and to learn how to control his own body and energy. That’s not to say that he doesn’t still get crazy or act out but I have been more than happy with the not-so-tangible things that Liam takes away from TKD. They really emphasize respect for your parents and elders, care for those around you, and being a force for good in the world. For the tournament this spring, our entrance fees were donated to the Allegheny County Homeless Children’s Fund and we were encouraged to contribute extra. I think the final total was over $10,000 raised.

        You’re welcome to pick my brain any time!

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