Monday, April 29, 2013

No Babies

Live in this house anymore!

Tuesday, April 09, 2013


Thing are kind of hectic around here.  I mean, things are always kind of hectic, but it's a particularly busy month.  I have a case that is filing at the end of the month and so my days have been long, my evenings longer, and my brain is full of expert reports, witness affidavits, legal claims, ballistics testing, etc.  It's hard to decompress and even harder to de-tangle because there's no real end to the day.  There's just breaks to sleep.  And then it starts again.   

I try my best to be as present as possible with the kids, but this last six week push at the end of a filing always means that they watch a little more tv, play a lot more with each other, and are more responsible for entertaining themselves.  I thought I was doing a pretty good job of making it all work but out of nowhere at dinner the other night Norah burst into tears and sobbed for a solid five minutes.  When I got her to tell me what the problem was all she could say was, "you work too much."  I asked her what I could do to help her not feel that way and she said, "make me a special dessert."  Maybe she was sincere, maybe I got played, I don't know.  But I still felt like a jerk.

Bubby had an event to go to this afternoon, so I came home early and decided the three of us needed a break and we deserved a dinner out together.  Any by dinner out I mean, they eat dinner and I drink a glass of wine.  They were stoked.

It had been a while since the three of us had gone out and it was a delightful time (I say that without even the slightest bit of sarcasm).  Lou had a basket of sweet potato fries and he laughed and made farm animal noises at everyone who walked by.  Norah and I had a really good talk about why Andrew K is such an asshole and what kind of dresses she thinks she would like to wear to kindergarten.  On the way home she asked if every Tuesday could be "special dinner night" and of course I agreed.  Maybe she was sincere, maybe I got played.  Who cares.

When we got home they played out front and Norah was crazy excited when a few of the neighbor girls came over to say 'hi'.  At one point she repeatedly shouted "this is the best day ever."  Don't worry, later on we had a talk about playing it cool.

Monday, April 08, 2013


If there has been one consistent thing about our girl since the day she was born, it is the fact that she really, really, really likes books.  Even as an infant she would sit and listen to multiple books in one sitting and by the time she could move around she would bring us the books she wanted herself.  There have been many nights that teeth did not get brushed or hair did not get washed (a lot of hair did not get washed nights), but I can probably count on one hand the number of times we did not read bedtime books.  It's been one of my favorite things to do with her and the one thing I somehow don't seem to mind finding 'just one more minute' for.

She may not be the most athletic kid out there, but girl has a crazy awesome imagination and an amazing recall for all kinds of stories.  She knew the alphabet as a toddler but I have been really impressed how in the last nine months or so she has really picked up the concept of phonics, syllables, and the concepts of capitalization.  Her pre-K program uses the Handwriting Without Tears program and her writing is really good (I think) for a four year old.  For several months now she has been really into chapter books.  Our favorite so far has been the Magic Treehouse series, and she consistently surprises me with her level of engagement and recall.  Basically, she's a genius.

She knows probably 30 to 40 "sight" words (words that you just memorize because you see them so often--like 'the' or 'and' or 'at' or....  you get the picture), and can identify and sound out a whole lot of non-sight words as well.  The other day she picked up an early reader book (it was about Clifford, the big red dog), and read the entire thing.  She had never seen it before so I know it wasn't because she memorized it (which she has done with several other books), but she actually read every single word correctly.  There were some words that I knew there was no way she knew or reasonably could have figured out (like elephant), and when I asked her how she knew she looked at me like I was an idiot and said, "it started with E and there's a picture of an elephant on the page."  When I told Bubby (a retired teacher and reading specialist) that she was reading but cheating a little by looking at the pictures, she looked at me like I was an idiot and said, "that's what they are supposed to do."  How was I supposed to know that?

According to the expert, Norah is currently reading at a first grade level.  I told you.  Genius.*

*We have never done a single flashcard, a second of homework, or drilled/quizzed her in any way.  We just sent her to a play based pre-school that integrates learning at all levels and then read to her each and every day.  She is starting to figure it out because she is interested and her brain is ready for it.  We are also employing the same concepts to help her do things like ride a bike.  At the rate she is going with that, she will be twenty-seven before she figures it out.  And will still need training wheels.

Sunday, April 07, 2013


I was looking for something for work on an old flash drive this morning and found this cute photo of Norah.  Based on the date it was taken she was two years, one month, and three days old.  I did some quick math and figured out that the corresponding day for Lou to be the exact same age was Easter Sunday of this year, hence the photo on the right.  

They definitely came from the same gene pool.