Winter Adventures

It snowed.  In DC, it doesn't matter how much; the mere prospect of a few flakes is enough to close schools and, well, the federal government, too.  So you can imagine the chaos when close to a foot fell in a couple of hours that overlapped with rush hour.  Folks were stranded in traffic for up to eight hours on trips that usually took them 45 minutes.  Live wires, downed trees, no power, cars abandoned on the roads, even thunder and lightening.    

There are times when Greg and I gripe at our 'urban' bungalow's proximity to an ugly stretch of a busy road.  Two days ago was not one of those times.  Greg hopped on the Metro, walked two short blocks, and was home in 15 minutes.  Our power remained on.  He shoveled.  Buzzy built a snowman.  And dumped a container of sequins over it.  Who needs a corncob pipe when there are sequins?

The next day, I was determined that the girls get out there and enjoy the winter wonderland.  We bundled up.  Then we had to go to the potty.  Then we bundled up again.  Approximately 50 minutes after the process started, we headed outside. 

"Sledding" consisted of me pulling Buzzy in a sled up our unplowed street while wearing Rosie.  We finally found a teensy-grade hill, but Buzzy seemed a little hesitant.  I forced her down a couple of times; she said it was fun but she was ready to go home.  Then she freaked out because a couple of random snow clumps were in her sled.  Then she insisted on taking off her mittens.  Then the sled ran over her bare hand.  Then we came home.  The end. 

Happy Birthday Epiphany Baby!

Every new year's eve, I'm struck by how silly our measurements of time are.  Someone decided the year would turn at the end of December, but (as I often reflected while picking through slush in my heels trying to catch a cab on NYE) they really could have just as easily picked the end of June.  Aging, too, seems arbitrary to me.  I fully expected to feel the weight of that extra digit when I turned 10, but it felt exactly like nine had just the day before.  And we all know 3 year olds who act like 18 year olds 30 year olds who act like teenagers.  At any rate, I never assigned much value to turning a year older, unless it got me a license or a drink.

Rosie, however, seems to be taking her upcoming first birthday very seriously.  She'd been coasting happily for the past six months, still waking up twice a night and not terribly interested in solid foods or moving.  I was so enchanted by her smiles and habit of clapping after I feed her that I sort of forgot that she was supposed to be crawling and pulling up on furniture and wrecking Buzzy's projects.  But, a couple weeks ago, she finally started to accept the responsibilities incumbent upon a big one year old girl: chowing down on real food, crowing loudly, and scooting across the floor on her bottom.  We've been forcing our little drunk sailor to stand to build up her leg strength, and today she lolled against a bench and said "hi!" clear as day to one of my friends.  She loves to wave (albeit, backwards) and clap.  She loves to call for, "Da, da, da!"  ("Mama" is reserved for emergency calls to get out of the crib, but I'm frequently so close by that she does take me for granted, the little stinker.)  She's started putting random things in her mouth and has quite a temper when I fish them out.  Toddlerhood is five minutes away.

Much as I'm curious to see who this little being is, I've enjoyed her sweet babyhood so much that I hate to see it end, but that silly calendar tells me that it's time.  Happy first birthday, Rosie, and many, many, many returns of the day. 



I'm trying to ignore how those numbers remind me of a binary code (not that I'm sure what that is, exactly, other than it has to do with computer programming), and instead concentrate on shiny, fresh starts and new beginnings. I kept thinking I'd get a few minutes of time to reflect on the past year and to prepare some resolutions for the year ahead. Or, if not full-fledged resolutions, at least time to think of a word for the year--that seems to be the trendy thing to do these days. But, as I close out 01.01.11, I have no word, no resolutions, and no conclusions from the past year. Wiped out from growing two littles into functioning people, I seem to have no time and even less inclination for my own self-improvement these days. (As my flabby tummy and disorganized house attest.)

As I type, however, I'm also gazing into a room containing a little, squealing, insomniac baby who is playing clapping games with her daddy and successfully avoiding bed time. She's not crawling yet, and shows no interest in cruising, but she did sprout a tooth. Occasionally, we (lovingly) refer to her as "Swivelbutt" because she moves in an ever-widening circle anchored by her Pampers. In the past few weeks, she's really become a little person, interested in table foods and trying to carry on conversations and pull the kitty's tail. She seems to be a slow bloomer, which I am trying not to worry about. 

There will be time enough for cleaning out closets and taking Pilates. I resolve not to miss the squeals or the chance to nuzzle soft cheeks or kiss the sweet spot right under her ear. As for the three year old--she wants very little to do with me, especially when Greg (or, 'Godfodder,' as my Nutcracker-obsessed girl has been calling him for the past month) is around, but I resolve to try to enjoy her little-girlhood, and to not sell her to the circus. And to sneak kisses as much as I can (even though she already wipes them off), and to read lots of books to her, and to let her give credit to the whole wide world for teaching her things (even though it was mostly me and a little bit of Dora.) And that will have to do.