Signs they’re growing up

img_2283I am feeling incredibly well-rested right now. I don't want to jinx this but long-time readers know that the 2-year-old has been a source of sleep woes for, oh, the past 2 years or so. He still gets up early but in the past few weeks we have had a few more mornings of sleeping past 6 a.m. The past two nights I have forced myself into bed by 10 p.m., with the result being that I have woken up before my toddler. Oh, is it wonderful to wake because your body wants to wake up, as opposed to being woken up by someone screaming "Mommy! Open the door!" (We have a baby-proof handle on the door so he can't wander around the house). This morning I woke up around 6 a.m. and was in the process of getting up when I must have fallen back asleep because next thing I know it was 6:45 a.m. and it was light out. Crazy times.

We often watch Dora the Explorer together in the morning. He has a mild preference for PAW Patrol, but PAW Patrol has at least 3 commercial breaks in a show, whereas Dora has none. This is key for whatever adult happens to be up with him, as being tugged at every 7 minutes to fast forward through the commercials is a much less relaxing way to greet the morning than simply being able to chill for 22 minutes. The little guy is now old enough that he knows to interact with the show ("Map! Map!")

He also has successfully tried the potty a few times now! All my kids have expressed interest around age 2, and then lost interest for a while until they made the transition around 3, so I am not reading too much into this. But at bath time the other night he told G (nanny) that he needed to go, and she put him on the toilet and he went. So he gets the concept.

The 9-year-old came home from swim practice very excited the other night because he got promoted to the next level group. This is going to require reworking the activity schedule (and one practice ends at 8:30 p.m. which is going to really throw a wrench in the works), but now that wrestling is over we have a bit more wiggle room. I am very proud of him. He worked hard for this.

The 7-year-old was my date for Valentine's Day last night. I took him out to a sushi place nearby, which was absolutely packed! Turns out lots of people go out for Valentine's Day, even if it's on a Tuesday. He gobbled up the edamame but I couldn't convince him to have anything other than white rice. Oh, and orange bubble soda, which he thought he looked really cool drinking, especially in his leather jacket (yes, my 7-year-old specifically requested a leather jacket for his wardrobe. And he insists on jeans, whereas the 9-year-old will only wear sweat pants).

The 5-year-old continues to prove that her social instincts are far superior to mine. She insisted that I bring her to a classmate's birthday party recently, because she knew a new friend and, more importantly, that new friend's mommy, would be there. "That way you can meet her mommy, and then you two can arrange a playdate," she told me. Maybe I should just get her a phone so she can bypass me.

In other news: Do you have a favorite TED talk? I welcome some suggestions of lesser known ones. I've found it's something I can listen to in the car. And I seem to be in the car an awful lot for someone who doesn't commute.

My husband and I met 14 years ago today.

Jen Dziura suggests you make your future self your Valentine.

The Papercraft Lab, run by frequent commenter ARC, has been retooled as a mother-daughter business! Anandi and her 7-year-old daughter are now importing super-special European notebooks, perfect for bullet-journaling or more run-of-the-mill writing. I love the idea of involving kids in an enterprise like this. It's perfect for teaching them math and writing and other such skills in an actually useful context.

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12 Responses to Signs they’re growing up


  1. Angela says:

    Hooray for waking up on your own time!!
    I actually was just sharing your blog link with one of my wake up accountability partners, as she was saying she started out getting moving early but was derailed by a baby- I think all women can benefit from your perspective about balance/time management/work/parenting/self.
    I also enjoyed your article in Time about becoming a morning person!

  2. ARC says:

    Thanks for the shout-out 🙂

    You are brave for taking anyone out to dinner on Valentine’s Day! We opted to stay home and eat cereal instead 🙂

    I was trying to figure out how to get into a regular rhythm of playdates as we can go for weeks without one since my girls play together fairly well, plus schoo/activities/etc take up most of our time during the week. Wondering if I should build it into weekends and just rotate who comes over each time. I think they’d be mostly drop-off playdates anyway at this point. (I hope!)

    • Jennie says:

      I have 3 kids close in age, boy-girl-boy. We ran into certain kids seemed to live at our house and others rarely got to come over because big brother was always having friends over. Because of the ages of my 2 oldest I don’t allow my daughter to have friends over the same time her slightly older brother does. (I’m not being a prude; but, their is a little boy/girl craziness going on) We started a new system about a year ago. The boys get the 1st and 3rd Friday night and both can have friends. My daughter can go to a friends, stay home, or go to grandmas. My daughter gets the 2nd and 4th Fridays. Now this means I always have at least one extra kid on Friday nights, BUT it is still less than we were having over and it is almost always contained to Friday night. They come over after school and are gone by lunch on Saturday. The older children now usually request to go somewhere together and can be dropped off and picked up later so even less entertaining on my end. This has significantly lessened the last minute play dates that are the bane of my existence.

      • ARC says:

        Oh, this is great, thank you! And whoa, I am not ready for that boy/girl craziness 🙂

        Yeah, I was thinking of blocking something like Saturday afternoon for playdates and just figuring it out week by week. My younger one still naps, so that makes it harder, but I suspect she’ll give that up soon.

        • Jennie says:

          Your kids are much younger, so overnight play dates probably aren’t in play yet, but I wish I had instigated a system much earlier. We ran into surprise play dates a lot and I truly hate it. I was often called the “mean mom” because I would say no. (Probably by some parents as well) The worst was after church play dates because I use Sunday afternoon to get ready for the week-including my weekly clean up and prep. It seemed like this was always the time when I’d get blindsided into a play date.

    • We’ve got a good system (I think) for playdates. My kids walk to school because we’re literally 600 meters from the school gate, so every second Friday a friend comes over straight after school. All 3 of them (my twins plus friend) walk home with Nanny S and play from about 2:30 til 5-ish.

      It’s great because my kids get to play with someone new and I don’t have it impacting my weekend (which – because you’ve seen my lists on Instagram – are sacred to me!)

      • ARC says:

        This is so great 🙂 I love how it just fits in seamlessly into your schedule!

  3. Kristen says:

    Oh so glad to hear that you are finally getting some sleep. What a relief!

  4. Virginia says:

    So great of your oldest- I remember you saying that he was considering quitting, and now with some grit he has progressed. Awesome that the 2yr old is sleeping through….its revolutionary and SAVES time because one needs less sleep when it’s uninterrupted!!!

  5. TED talks – look up Ze Frank. I have such a crush!!

  6. Lily says:

    I’m not a writer or artist but I still love Elizabeth Gilbert’s TED talk on creativity (although it’s not exactly a lesser-known one!)

  7. Haha! Kids these days. But getting them gadgets early on is sure to pose some problems. But then, they are always exposed to these kinds of things at school.

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