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Caboose Monkey PDF Print E-mail
Written by OHmommy   
Monday, 06 October 2008 19:00
"That is soooooo gross. DON'T teach her THAT!" I yell at Lola as she giggles out loud at the sight of Fifi smelling her own feet and replying, "Ew." Lola looks at me sweetly, "But it is soooooo funny that she listens to me."

"Stop it. What are you teaching her?" I ask Jay as he shows Fifi how to fly off the ottoman and land on the plush couch. "She likes it Mama, you see how she is smiling at the trick I taught her?"

As the caboose child, Fifi has innocently been exposed to couch sky diving, feet smelling, nose picking, sugared juice, sloppy Popsicles, foam swords, dart guns, iced sugar cookies, sticky gummy snacks, crunchy peanut butter... oh man I couldn't possibly list all of the items that my baby has been exposed to years before I introduced the same items to the other two. Note that smelling feet and nose picking was in no way ever taught in this house, it was a natural evolution.

Each day she observes her siblings and cautiously watches everything they do. She rarely makes eye contact as her mind races and registers every action packed moment. The good observations of Jay and Lola far outweigh the bad. On most days.

Our most favorite past time is hiking on the banks of the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland:







Monkey see, monkey do. But this little monkey is also an extraordinary little person that leads us everyday to smile, laugh, and enjoy the little moments.

"Ewwwww, Mama! Bug eww." She found the caterpillar in an overgrown prairie and pointed it out for us, on our hike. "Touch it Feenster!" Lola demanded. Fifi shook her sweet little head NO and walked away on her own path. Smart little monkey too.
 

The end of an era PDF Print E-mail
Written by OHmommy   
Sunday, 05 October 2008 19:00
Not too long ago ...
I had a bulky travel system stroller in the trunk of my minivan and three standard car seats fastened on top of goldfish crumbs in the back row.

Not too long ago ..
In the corner of our guest room stood an antique cradle that I feverishly rocked all three of my children in, until my knuckles were white in the middle of the night.

Not too long ago ...
Our basement storage room was bursting at the seams with over sized plastic baby toys that had traces of dried sweet potato puree lovingly left behind.

Yesterday I watched as my pregnant best friend and her husband loaded their borrowed minivan with the remnants of all things baby from my house. The slightly overwhelmed soon-to-be parents took over a dozen trips from my house to their car filling up. Each time they stuffed something in, I exhaled out. Phew. I am so content and at peace with a house free of bottles, burp cloths, and bibs. Amen.

Although my house is YEARS away from being anything resembling peaceful, my hands and heart are forever full. And. I am 110% totally okay with the sudden demise of my baby era.


Christmas 2008 card: Take 1 (Should I? Could I send it to print?)
 

Much to do about nothing PDF Print E-mail
Written by OHmommy   
Wednesday, 01 October 2008 19:00
The enormous picture window above my kitchen sink is framing in the glorious wooded view of the changing autumn colors. My house is completely and utterly silent. Jay is in school, Lola at a play date, and Fifi is fast asleep after a lunch full of raspberries and cheese.

I open up all of the windows and welcome the fall breeze in. In the distance, I can hear bird's chirping in our trees over Fifi's gentle breaths on the baby monitor. I have a two hour window of time open and my to-do list is growing faster then my children. I just bought Jay new pants two months ago and he has outgrown them since AND he is considered tall enough at Cedar Point to pay full adult price.

I have so much to prepare and complete. And to dust and clean. And to chop and cook. And to organize and file. And to call and confirm. And to fold and put away. It seems that every time I get close to completing one task three more appear.

But the silence is fascinating and all I can think of is the last time it was so quiet. So not chaotic. I do not want to interrupt the glorious symphony of Fifi's sweet breaths over the monitor. I am hoping no one calls or that I don't have the sudden urge to start roasting the chicken I have for dinner.

Flipping frogs. The UPS guy just rang the doorbell. Mama, we got your package. Thanks!

Where was I? Ahhhh... the silence. I love fall in Ohio it is so peaceful. I think I might for once do much about nothing and relax. The pile of laundry will not run away, dinner can be made with Lola who is convinced she is the next top chef after your comments, e-mails can be left unanswered, and my pregnant best friend who is arriving in Cleveland this weekend has got to be nesting and will enjoy cleaning my house with me.

For now I will enjoy the silent fall breeze....

Flipping frogs. The USPS just rang the doorbell. Lola will be excited to see that her BRIDE, not Hannah Montana,
Halloween costume arrived.

Fifi JUST woke up.

Oh well, I tried to relax. Silence is overrated anyways. Right?
 

The Politics of Potty Training PDF Print E-mail
Written by OHmommy   
Tuesday, 30 September 2008 19:00
Disclaimer: I am not a psychologist, pediatrician, or potty training expert. I know that next to nursing a child, potty training is the next most "controversial" mommy topic. And I want my side documented on the Internet.

She might still occasionally drink her milk from a bottle and use a pacifier but my 20 month old is pretty much potty trained. For the last couple of weeks, since the other two started school, I have been "secretly" potty training my 18 month old baby while at home. Why? It's very simple.

Consider two puppies a six month old and a one year old being house trained. The one year old understands you better but the six month old is easier to house train.

When I was training my first born before his second birthday my mom told me, "You were out of diapers at 18 months." I don't think she was lying. In the 1950s 95 percent of children were potty trained by 18 months. The disposable diaper was introduced in the 60s and that number has been falling ever since.

It is much easier and more convenient giving my baby her milk in a bottle. It is much easier and more convenient for me to keep her in diapers too. Potty training should be considered just another milestone. You encourage your infant to crawl even before they are truly ready. You purchase toys for your child to pull up on and stand even before they are ready. You place spoons in their chubby fingers encouraging them to independently eat even before they are ready. We never rush these milestones but yet we encourage them even before they are ready.

So why not potty train? I have been around mommy-blog potty training posts before and understand that I am in the minority and the majority say, "Well, they won't go to kindergarten in diapers and I'm not going to push them." True. They probably won't go to school in diapers.

But I believe that the season for training peaks at about 18 months when the child acknowledges out loud that they are wet/dirty. There is no way that I could have potty trained my overly stubborn and head strong Lola at 3 years of age as easily as I trained her at 18 months. I really do believe this.

No stickers. No candy. No charts. No plastic potty chairs. No pressure. No punishment. No rushing. No negativity.

Yes to role modeling through books. Yes to dumping diaper wastes in the toilet. Yes to sitting on the toilet. Yes to clapping and screaming, "Bravo!" Yes to encouragement. Yes to following at their pace.

It can be done with most children. Sure it takes a longer time and accidents happen. But in my opinion, encouraging a younger child for me was far more simple and less stressful for both parties.

With my third child I started sitting her on the toilet at 18 months old after her nap. It was my three hour window of time that I knew I was home waiting for the school bus to arrive with my son. We were home and I was able to religiously place her on the toilet every hour. I did this for fours weeks just during that three hour window of time. I had to be consistent for once you start you can't turn back. Shortly after those initial four weeks passed she was able to tell me herself or walk up to the bathroom herself. At this point, I opened up our window to include our hectic mornings. Because she never had a plastic potty chair she was able to go anywhere.

Potty training: training the child to use the potty and not waiting for them to. Every country outside of North America has potty trained toddlers because they can not afford diapers. It really can be done with some consistent encouraging, time, and lots of love.

It took two months of consistent encouraging and I have a 20 month old that uses 2 diapers a day (for sleep).

So, when my children are parents and I tell them, "You were potty trained before two." I can direct them here for proof.
 

Solving the world's problems one toddler at a time PDF Print E-mail
Written by OHmommy   
Wednesday, 24 September 2008 19:00
Sometimes on my endless unpaved road in Motherhood my children throw me a speed bump which causes me to slow down and think. They force me to look at the world around me. Left, right, left again, and over the shoulder before crossing the speed bump. After cautiously crossing I become a different person.

The latest speed bump in my journey was that of my toddler's self discovery of her body that lead to worldwide tolerance.

My youngest child discovered her belly button last week. "Bummie?"

She toddled around the house pulling up everybody's shirts exposing their "bummies." We naturally joined in with her contagious giggles as we flashed our belly buttons. Her eyes grew larger by the minute as she realized that everyone had "bummies" like she did.

"Bummies?!?"

After a quick google search with a wild banshee on my lap, "Does every human have a belly button?" We learned that every single human being from Albania to Zimbabwe had a belly button.

Ha! We are all the same.

We. Are. All. The. Same. We all have belly buttons.


"bummies"
pępek
へそ
ventre pulsante
ombligo
पेट बटन
belly button.

Whatever you call it. We all have it. Enjoy your speed bumps.
Last Updated on Monday, 20 July 2009 22:26
 

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Author

Pauline Karwowski.

Is a self proclaimed globe trotting, minivan driving, SAHM stiletto ho.

Happily married mother to 3 Cleveland natives: Jay the son, Lola the daughter, and Fifi the banshee.

Now in Chicago, IL.

The content on this blog is the opinion of the blogger.

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