Archive | November 2014

The Twirly Dress Battle

I feel the need to document the current struggle we are in. And when I say struggle, it is real. I’d like to call this phase of my child’s life, “The Battle of the Twirl.” Folks, this isn’t for the faint of heart. Each morning my newly three-year-old daughter wakes up a chipper, sweet baby. She asks me to get her down from her big girl bed, we snuggle for a minute, and she eats something (I have learned my lesson that my girl wakes up a little “hangry” – hungry + angry, so I usually bring an “offering” of cereal or a bagel with peanut butter when I enter her early morning room). We talk about her dreams from the night before, and it’s this perfect mommy-daughter moment. And then. I say, “it’s time to get dressed!” And the birds stop singing. The whole world seems to stare at me and say, “Silly mommy! What are you thinking?” Heeeeere we go! Here are the rules, people. The dress must be twirly. But it also must be long – if it’s above her knees FORGET IT. It must twirl at a specific angle for which I have not yet been able to get an exact measurement. If it doesn’t meet these qualifications, THERE WILL BE TEARS. And I mean full-on, crocodile, my-world-is-ending-and-my-dreams-are-crushed-and-now-I’ll-never-be-a-ballerina tears. And the need for a lot of snuggling. So much that I need to program in an extra 20 minutes for this fight so I won’t be late for work every morning! And really, I can’t complain. While I have a super emotionally-charged 3-year-old girl, I must say she’s overall a great kid. This is our biggest struggle. Which I think says a lot. BUT THE STRUGGLE IS REAL (with a pinch of sarcasm). Anyway… Here’s what I’m doing about it. Guess what, little 3-year-old lady? Your mama has a few tricks up her sleeve. Here’s how I’m GOING to win this war…
Step 1. Forced-choice options. I went to the thrift store and bought every 99 cent twirly dress they had in a size 3T. I organized her drawer to include compartments for twirly dresses, long-sleeved shirts, and soft pants (oh yeah, she also refuses to wear jeans or anything not stretchy on those little legs). It’s cold here, so twirly dresses need to be layered. Soooo, now she has choices. And she can choose one of each. Bam.
Step 2. Bonus contingency. Here’s another piece to the puzzle. Sometimes, little lady is not satisfied with the twirly dress she picks out. Sometimes, she puts one on and for some reason it is not twirly enough (even though yesterday it was?) and the whole thing goes to hell. Also. You know what? Sometimes all those damn dresses are being washed. Like today. We really need to do laundry around here. So. She has this twirliest of twirly dresses that we got her for the holidays, that she’s been wearing around the house for the past 2 weeks (might as well get some use out of it, right?). This morning, I thought, that is the perfect piece of collateral! Ok, little lady. You want to wear that Christmas dress when you get home? Then put on whatever your mama picks out for you without having a big ol’ come-apart. And GUESS WHAT? It worked! My little lady went to school in leggings and a tunic. And boots. We had no struggle. We had no tears. Ok, a few initial tears but she got it together in record time. And guess who wasn’t late for work! Can we start a twitter handle for #bcbamommies? Because today felt like a TOTAL win. Let’s see what tomorrow brings… For now I’m basking in the glow of glory.

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Happy third birthday, Lucy!

My dear girl,

You’re three! THREE! Or, as you say, “free!” You’re still working on that “th-” sound. You are exhilarating, curious, questioning, assertive, and really good at sharing your food. You love all things princess, ballerina, sparkly, and twirly. If it doesn’t twirl, it will NOT be worn. And the concepts you’re coming up with every day amaze me. You ask questions all the time (“How do monsters close their eyes?” “Do horses have bangs?” “What happens if we see a bear in the woods?” “What do coyotes eat?” “Where do fish sleep?”). The never-ending questions amuse and amaze me, my inquisitive girl. And you are the BEST snuggler. You regularly request “snuggle breaks” when you’re playing, just to get a little check-in with me, then head back to your pretend world of tea parties and play-do. And I have to mention, you have always known what you want, and that has never been more apparent than now, at three. My sweet, feisty girl! You, being the Scorpio that you are, have a flair for the dramatic and you FEEL your emotions! Your daddy and I joke that you are a “little Napoleon” – attempting to rule your world in a 29-lb, 3-feet-tall frame. Tiny person, big personality! And speaking of that big personality, let’s not forget your love of singing and dancing. You’re rocking that ballet class! Yesterday, when you normally just want to twirl by yourself, you indulged me and let me rock and sway with you around the kitchen. You didn’t notice my teary eyes as we moved to the music. And I don’t know how you do it, but you’ve memorized a plethora of 80s and 90s country songs (you can thank your mama for that later)! One of my favorite things to do with you is sing with you when we are doing our nighttime routine. It always starts with me asking, “What should we sing?” And you responding with, “Ummm, I want a new song.” You’re testing your mama’s lyrical knowledge, my girl! Our current favorites include “Little Things” by Patsy Cline, “Moon Over Georgia” by Shenandoah, and “She’s in Love With the Boy” by Trisha Yearwood. You sing with all the passion and fervor that a 3-year-old could produce, and my heart aches when I hear you singing your little heart out. And lastly, you’re going to be a big sister! You are excited about taking on this new role and ask me all sorts of questions about what your little brother will be like, how we will care for him, and what kinds of things big sisters do. You lay with me at night and snuggle my belly. I can’t wait for you to meet him, and for him to meet you! I have to end this letter, as I hear you calling for me from your big girl bed. Time to get up and get ready for your birthday tea party! Thank you for being you, my precious girl. I couldn’t have dreamed I would have a more beautiful, incredible daughter. And as you know (and still ask me), you are and will always be my baby.

Love, mom

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