Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Are all 19-month-olds this entertaining?

Some days Jeff and I just sit, watch and listen to Charlotte as she provides her funny, random running commentary on the world. We went out for a walk yesterday. The second we're out the door it begins.

"It's a birdie! A birdie, a-flying! A-a-a-fly AWAY in a SKY!"

"We walk...a-weird. We walk a-weird." (This is her interpretation of a song with the lyrics "We walk through the world.")

"Mama alright. Dada alright." (I have to admit to playing "Surrender" by Cheap Trick for her once or twice. It's part of my running mix. She's picked this part of the song up.)

Someone drives by in a car. "Hello, car. Hello lady. Lady...a-driving. A car! Noisy car!"

Right now Charlotte is eating ("Mmmm. Delicious oatmeal! Funny Grandma [the Quaker on the box]!") She stopped in the middle of a bite and said "Charlotte kiss mama?"

I was happy to help.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Found it!

The cord to the video camera, that is. Watch Charlotte's new video here. Pay particularly close attention at 3:51 and 4:55--you might need to turn up the volume. We're so proud.

Monday, January 21, 2008

I don't know if my haggard, weary expression, rumpled hair and smudged glasses, or coat thrown hastily over my pajamas clued her in. More likely it was the fact that it was after midnight on a Saturday night at Wal-Mart, and I was buying a humidifier and Vicks Vap-o-rub.

"Somebody sick at your house," the checker, whose nametag said "Sheryl", said. It was a statement, not a question, but I answered anyway.

"My baby," I said, feeling every bit as weary as I looked.


Charlotte is sick. She's had a persistent, hacking cough for a while now. I'm ashamed to say how long. I guess it started as a normal cold before Christmas. Then, she seemed momentarily better when we got back to Ohio after the New Year. But I'm wondering now if it never actually went away.

Last week she had a fever, and some diapers whose contents were suspended somewhere between the states of liquid and solid. This weekend, her poor nose was so stuffed up that she would snore herself awake almost hourly at night, and wouldn't nap at all. Hence the midnight humidifier purchase. If she's still as bad tomorrow, we'll bring her to the doctor.

What is it about sick kids that makes everyone bust out their horror stories? If my baby has a runny nose, I want to hear "common cold," not "my nephew had that and they thought it was nothing and it turned out to be THE BUBONIC PLAGUE!" Charlotte does not as of yet have any supperating buboes, so I think we dodged that bullet. But, seriously, why, people? I'm worried enough rocking my baby back to sleep for the fifth time that night. I don't need to be worrying about pneumonia or the whooping cough or anything else I can't do anything about until daybreak anyway.

Now watch: we'll go to the doctor and she'll have pneumonia. If you need the address to which to send my Mother of the Year award, just email me.

Friday, January 18, 2008

I know, I know...it's been a week and I haven't posted anything. I KNOW! I have this GREAT video of Charlotte that I'm going to put up here just as soon as I can find the cord I need to download it from the camera. I know it's around here somewhere...

Friday, January 11, 2008

What Charlotte Does These Days When Asked To Smile: Photographic Evidence

Exhibit One: The Squinty Wince:

Exhibit Two: The "Underbite":

Exhibit Three: The "Bulldog":

Pardon the unedited nature of these shots. These are the raw files from today's 18-month photo shoot. I took nearly 40 frames and got only one shot where she was sitting up relatively straight and looking in the general direction of the camera with her eyes open.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

A conversation

The scene: Breakfast. Charlotte has moved on from her first course of scrambled eggs with ham to oatmeal, although she still has a piece of ham on her shoulder. I am eating oatmeal as well.

Charlotte: (muttering to herself) Delicious. Delicious.
Charlotte: (out loud) Hi, mama!
Mama: Hi, Charlotte! How are you?
Charlotte: (silence)
Mama: How are you, Charlotte?
Charlotte: Ooh, ham!

Moments later:

Charlotte: Hello, ladies!
Mama: (laughing) I can only assume you mean me. So, hello!
Charlotte: I'm fine!
Mama: I didn't quite ask yet, but that's good to hear.
Charlotte: Fine! Good! You?
Mama: I'm fine, tha...
Charlotte: (interrupting to bellow) DELICIOUS HAM!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Tonight, Jeff, Charlotte and I were all out for a walk. One thing Charlotte likes to do is greet people she sees with the name of someone she knows. Typically, she goes for the closest approximation. So any gentleman over the age of 65 is Dick, the name of our apartment office manager's husband. Guys are generally Uncle somebody (Awesome, Mark, or Steve). Girls are typically Becca, Mindi, or, for a pair of ladies, "aunt Katies."

Tonight, Charlotte pointed ahead of us on the bike path and said "two aunt Katies!"

"Uh, no, Charlotte," I responded. "That's just one person. And he's a guy. He's not even one aunt Katy."

Sunday, January 06, 2008

But I thought I had more time!!!

Charlotte has a new favorite word. That word is "no." This is her standard response, even when she actually wants something, a time when the answer for most people would be "yes," or "sure," or even "hey, why not!" A typical conversation:

Mama: Charlotte, are you hungry? Do you want some mac-n-cheese?
Charlotte: No!
Mama: Are you sure?
Charlotte: No! No (less certain now). No no no (melting down, waving arms around wildly).
Mama: Uh, okay, let's get you some food.
Charlotte: (while running to the high chair) No! No no no!

Or this one:

Mama: Hey, Char-char, let's take a bath*!
Charlotte: No! No bath.
Mama: Yep, it's bath time. We can play with your cups!
Charlotte: (while climbing the stairs to get to the bathroom) No! NO CUPS!

I know this is normal. But what I don't understand is, I thought it was normal for a two-year-old. You know, two? When demonic little imps take over the once-angelic form of your child, and you're left with a quivering wreck of a toddler who can't tell you what she wants but can only emphasize that what you're offering is definitely NOT IT.

The thing is, Charlotte is 18 months old. A year and a half! That's not two, imps! Leave her alone!

*By which I mean, "You take a bath." I don't get in there with her or anything.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Happy New Year!

One of my resolutions for this site is to start a couple of regular features. One that I am starting today is the weekly photo of Charlotte. It's sometimes hard for me to think of things to write, so I took a page from my writing instructor's book: write a description or evaluation of an image. Describing a photo of Charlotte (why I like it, why I took it, what's going on in it) is a great way to tap my memory.

So here's the first one, kind of a cheat since it's from last week, but cut me some slack! I was on vacation!

This is Charlotte, all bundled up and enjoying the fresh snow in Iowa. You can also kind of see the downed branches on the trees in the background from the major ice storms that moved through the Midwest in December. Charlotte didn't stay out for very long--long enough to watch Nana Deur build a tiny snowman, but it was pretty cold.

One thing this picture makes me think of is the book Snow. It's one of Charlotte's favorites, and occasionally she busts out some of the lines from the book, like "Oh yes, oh yes" (which in the book is followed by "I do like snow.") or "Come out! Come out!" ("Come out in the snow!").

Also, the way she pronounces "snow" is pretty adorable. It's hard to describe, but it sounds a little bit like "no" but with kind of a nasal thing at the beginning. That's how she starts any word that begins with the "sn" sound: "snake" is "nake," "snail" is "nail," etc.

Speaking of pronunciation, remind me to tell the story of the way Charlotte says "fork." I bet you can guess!