Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas!!

Dillon is really enjoying Christmas this year. We put the tree up a few days ago. She loved helping with the ornaments and loved having the lights layed out on the ground so she could jump over them. She's examined and re-examined all the ornaments and analyzed what they are all made of- glass, plastic, wood- and whether or not each will break. We opened presents this morning, with her favorite part being the wrapping paper. I should've wrapped a bunch of empty boxes, just so she could unwrap them! At some point, so stood up and declared "Dillon is just FASCINATED with these presents!"

What did she get for Christmas? Some fun musical instruments, playdoh, books, money gymnastics class, a wooden block set with farm animals and people, a guitar, a firetruck, a LeapFrog learning pad, a music box/snowglobe, some clothes and some stocking stuffers. Her favorites- all of them at this point. She pays with each for a little while, then moves on to something else. Right now, she's napping, resting up for another frenzied round of bouncing from toy to toy. Hopefully, we'll be able to get her to eat something amidst all this frenzy!

Yesterday, we played for almost 2 hours out in the snow. She slid down snow mounds, she dug holes in the snow, she stood up and sat down repeatedly down the length of the driveway so that it looked like the snowblower had blown a scalloped edge. The fun all came to an end when I accidently blew snow on her with the snowblower. With all the padding with the coat, snowpants, everything, it was more a surprise than a hurt, but it still rattled her enough that she wanted no more of playing in the snow. I'm sure it'll soon be forgotten. At least it better, or it'll be a long winter.....

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Being 2 1/2....

Had to post some pictures since it's been a little while since I've posted. The painting one is from when she and I were painting one of the walls in her room. She actually did very well with the paint, only getting it on a couple of spots it wasn't supposed to be, including a part of her rear end :) The wall looks really nice and we've gotten another painted since then.

The outdoor pictures are from a recent bike ride. We packed up our dinner, rode for a while, then stopped at this spot off of the rail trail. Dillon & I had stopped there the day before and found it to be such a great place- beautiful view of the river with a small area that Dillon could wade in safely. It was only about 65 degrees out when we were out there, but I had learned from the day before to bring her a change of clothes. So, she got to play a bit, Dave & I got to eat dinner and visit a bit, then I changed her clothes, got her all snuggled in her blanket in the trailer and gave her some food to eat on the ride (since there was NO interest in eating when there's all that sand and water and rocks to play with) and off we went. On the way home we stopped for ice cream since our local ice cream shop was about to close for the season. So, a fun night all in all.

One of my favorite things that she's been doing lately is quoting books. It used to be only occasionally and only the ones that we read a lot. Now it's a lot more frequent and the quotes come from books we have only read a couple of times- provided it's a book she likes. We've been going to the library regularly, which really keeps her interested in books. The current favorite is "If you give a pig a pancake." It's really fun to read it with her because you can start a sentence and she'll finish it for you. And, of course, grins from ear to ear the whole time.

We got her a bike several weeks ago, but it's really too big for her. She's pushed in around, but can't really ride it. So, Dave got her a new one yesterday- more of a big wheel style. She still can't reach the pedals (how she'd get such short legs?!) but can reach the floor and move herself around, which she loves. I'm going to take her to the park today where there are more sidewalks. I'll try to get pictures to post.

Now she's awake, so computer time has ended for a while. I'll try to not wait so long to post next time.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Lessons from the Rail Trail

Here's Dillon in her new bike trailer! I've been wanting to go riding for a while since I hadn't since before she was born. I finally decided between a bike seat and a bike trailer. We found one on sale, so off on a bike ride we went! We have a Rail Trail entrance about a mile from our house. It's the perfect place to ride because it's pretty level and there are no motorized vehicles on it- in the summer anyway. There are snowmobiles on it in the winter, not that we'd be able to ride a bike then, anyway. She happily put on her helmet and crawled right in. I put snacks, a blanket (in was only upper 50's when we headed out), and a doll. She was happy as a clam. We rode for about a half and hour, then took a break so she could get out and walk around, then spent another 1/2 hour just playing along the trail.

So, here are some of the lessons learned from our excursion on the rail trail-

The bike throws dirt back into the trailer, though there wasn't any on her face, so it seems to be manageable.

A blanket is a necessity when the temp is below about 70.

A river that goes under a bridge is not 2 different rivers, it's only one.

God threw the rocks in the river.

Some plants have stickers on them.

Those stickers are different than the paper kind, of which there are several on the bike trailer.

It's fun to spin the bike tire when the bike is laying on the ground (no kickstand on my bike).

When you run a stick along the spokes of a spinning bike wheel, it makes music. This will entertain Dillon for about 10 minutes straight.

The woods are not a bathroom, but it's OK to pee in them.

According to Dillon, there are such things as "momma long legs," the female version of "daddy long legs."

All told, though, it was a great success & I think we both look forward to going again. Hopefully Dave will be able to join us at some point.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The endless questions

I think that somewhere I was prepared for the "why" stage of toddlerhood. I wasn't prepared for the questions to be fully articulated though. After expressing the desire for a temporary off switch for the constant stream of questions, Dave very gently and kindly reminded me the other day that we really do want her to ask questions. He's right- we do. I still wish there was a temporary off switch.

Here's a sampling of some recent conversations:
This morning in the car:
D: Is that a fence? W:Yes
D: Are fences dangerous? W: No
D: Are fences dangerous? W: no
D: Are you sure? W: Yes
D: Is that a fence right there? W: yes
D: Are fences dangerous? W: Nope, they still aren't dangerous
D: Are you sure? W: Yes, baby, I'm sure

Last Saturday after I fell backwards over the fan-
D: Momma are you OK? W: nodding yes
D: Momma are you OK? W: still nodding yes
D: Momma did you hurt yourself? W: still nodding yes
D: Did you hurt your knee: W: No, I hurt the back of my leg
D: Did you hurt the back of your knee W: No the back of my leg
D: Did you hurt the back of your knee a little bit? W: No, baby, the back of my leg
D: I wanna see you hurt the back of your leg. W: It's one of those hurts that you can't see
D: Did you hurt the back of your leg? W: Yes
D: Did you break the fan? W: Yes- it looks like one of the feet fell off
D: Is it broken? W: Well, let me see if I can fix it.
D: Did you break it? W: I don't know yet
D: Momma, did you fall on the fan and break it? W: It looks that way
D: Did you fix the fan, momma? W: I'm trying to
D: Maybe Daddy can fix it. W: I think I can do it
D: Momma, did you hurt the back of your knee? W: no, baby the back of my leg

Thursday, in the car trying to find a place to park to go to the farmer's market. I didn't asnwer a good number of these questions since I was trying to concentrate on driving!
W: Oh, looks like we'll have to look around for a place to park
D: Are we trying to find a place to park? Are we going to the farmer's market? Is there a place to park over there? Are we going to turn here? Are we going to swing? Is this the farmer's market? Are we turning to find a place to park? Are we going to park here? Are you turning the car momma? Momma! Are we looking for a place to park? Is this the farmer's market?

Then there are those questions that I have no idea how to answer-

What happens when Dillon's a big girl?
What happens when Dillon's a little tiny baby?
What happens when Daddy's a little tiny baby?

There are also the ones that are kind of fun because you get to see how she remembers things and puts them together-
Is Mimi daddy's mom?
Is Nana your mom?

And the sweet ones-
Momma are you still sad that Satchmo's not here anymore?
Can I have a hug?
Can I go see daddy's working downstairs?

See, here, I'm worn out just thinking about all those questions!

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Big girl

The cute hair lasted for approximately 2 minutes after this picture was taken. She inherited my super-fine hair, so nothing will stay in it for very long. It was really cute while it lasted, though!

We're slowly adjusting to life without Satchmo. We all miss him a great deal. Dillon asked me out of the blue yesterday morning if I was still sad. I've learned to clarify what information she is looking for before answering that question because she may well be thinking about me bumping my knee a month ago. When I asked her what would I be sad about, she said "Cause Satchmo's not here anymore." I told her I was and asked her if she missed him and she said "Yeah." It's interesting how she processes his death. She still talks about him, but is making fewer comments about how she wants to give him a bite of food or wants to pet him. She will, out of nowhere, tell us that Satchmo died. As we have all along, we talk about it for as long as she wants, then move on.

Two weeks ago, I took her to the circus. It was a saturday & Dave was on call, so she & I went to breakfast and went to a small traveling circus that was in town. It was a one-ring circus and the show lasted a little over 2 hours. The animals were all the more domestic variety- birds, cats, dogs and horses. Dillon loved the dog tricks the best. Most of the rest of it kept her attnetion for the most part, though a few things were lost of her. Honestly, a few things were lost of me, like the guy that spun a large ceramic flower pot on his head. All I could do was wondering about the moment that he thought "Hey, why I don't I try spinning that 50 pound flower pot on my head?!" All in all, though, she seemed to like it and we'll probably do it again next year. There's another one coming to town next month, but I think we'll pass on it. I can't say that she liked it enough to do it again just yet. Several times since then she's commented that "Sometimes circuses are loud." Yep, sometimes they are.

Yesterday morning, my friend Juliana kept Dillon while I worked half a day. She took them (Dillon and Emma, her daughter) to a little children's theatre performance- a little 3o minute play. When I came to pick Dillon up, Juliana said they had a interesting conversation in the car.
Dillon told Emma, who is 5 months younger, that she (Dillon) was a girl and that she had girl parts. That's what made her a girl. And big girls pee on the potty and girls sit down when they pee. I asked if there was any discussion about what boys do and she said that the conversation pretty much just stuck to what girls do. We both found it pretty funny.

We're going to play with a new friend this afternoon, Lydia. She just moved into town and this will be the second time we've gotten together. Actually we saw her for a little while this morning, too, so this is a very exciting day for both of them.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Our friend

In Memory of Satchmo
February 14, 1994-July 12, 2005

What a tough week this has been. We miss him more than we can possibly express. He was a force to be reckoned with! There was no doubt about his presence on this earth, just with the sheer frequency of his barking! It is that trait that makes his absence that much more profound. Even with a toddler in the house, it is deafeningly quiet. I still find myself bracing for the shrill barking that is to come when either of us walks in the door. That silence is tough. Each little part of the day that was his is another reminder that he's gone. Getting him up in the morning- he had to be picked up, or at the very least given a sufficient scratch on the back or he would refuse to go outside. More often than not, when one of us would pass him trying to sleep, we'd bend down and give him a little scratch. I never realized that I pretty much always did this after getting Dillon down for a nap. The first night we didn't put him to bed was devastating. I've never seen a dog get so excited to go to bed- but only if he was tired. He was our friend through many life changes. He disagreed on things that we thought were good ideas-- getting another dog, moving somewhere with 50 degree below zero wind chills, having a baby, then moving to somewhere in which the snow was deeper than he was tall- the list goes on. Sometimes he won, sometimes not. He did learn to deal with having the baby around, but not for a while. For as crazy as he made us at times, he could also be the most sweet, loving dog you've ever met. We loved him a great deal and his loss has affected us deeply.

For her part, Dillon is trying to figure it out. She went to the vet with us. She saw the vet examine him and then him with the oxygen mask on and the IV in before Dave brought she & I home for her to go to bed. She knew something was wrong and hiding it from her wouldn't have been fair. While she didn't know that's what she was doing, she got to pet him goodbye too. The next morning I just gave her the simple explanation that Satchmo didn't get better and wasn't going to be at our house anymore. Mostly she gave me hugs when I cried and told her that I was sad because I missed Satchmo. There have been lots of hugs and I love you's all week for Dave & I both. She's asked several questions since then. We've told her that Satchmo died and what that means in concrete terms- he isn't breathing, he won't play with her anymore, he doesn't eat anymore. She'll seem to get it, then will make a comment sometime later about wanting to see Satchmo or that the doctor or daddy or momma will make him feel better. We've tried to keep it very simple and just follow her lead. Neither of us have hidden being sad about him and have just answered questions as they've come up. For now, we're not going to even make an attempt at explaining his ashes. I'm going to try to go by the vet's to pick them up tomorrow without her. Based on some of her comments this week, she thinks he's still there.

Tonight, Dave's on call and Courtney is in town. She asked if she could come get Dillon for a little while this evening. One of the tough things about this week is the difficulty in just being able to grieve the loss of our friend. Dillon's needs have not changed, and really have only increased with her trying to figure this out as well. Everything is so interrupted when taking care of a young child. By no means is that a complaint, but it is much tougher to just take care of your own need to just grieve when her needs are so great. So, I've ended up with some time all to myself tonight. I spent some time at the bookstore- something I truly miss from pre-child days- then came home. It gave me enough time to switch gears out of caregiving mode and be able to sit and cry a bit, uninterrupted. I had been wanting to make this post because writing always helps me, but wanted to do it, again, uninterrupted.

The support of friends and family has made this week a little more bearable. We've gotten either phone calls, emails or cards each day since he died. It doesn't make us miss him any less, but does help us feel less alone. I still can't believe he's gone and I still find myself wanting to say things to him- "here satchmo, I dropped a piece of food," "come on buddy" when we come in from outside. Then there's the toughest one of all- 'Goodnight, Satchmo, sleep well."

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Happy 4th of July!

We had a good time celebrating the 4th of July yesterday. Unfortunately, I took all film pictures instead of digital, so I don't have any to share today. We went to the celebration in Hanover (the city beside us) in the morning where we got to see some baby animals, sit in a fire truck, watch some poeple dancing, have a sno-cone for the first time (her, not me!) and see some friends. She also enjoyed just running up and down some of the ramps outside the dorms at Dartmouth College. In the evening, we went to our local celebration where we twice rode in a horse drawn wagon, did a little swinging and watched people getting dunked in one of those things that you throw balls at a target so the seat drops out from under someone. She thought that was pretty cool. Then we decided to go get some food, and chose Italian. There's a place pretty close to us and is very child-friendly, so that's were we went. After eating we decided to get desert. The waitress brought the desert try over, Dave and I both chose what we wanted. Dillon followed both of our "I want..." statements with "I want a fork!" Forget choosing one- I want them all!!

After we ate, we decided to walk around outside a bit. It's a pretty area by a river with a small shopping area what was all closed for the holiday. Dillon found a store stroller with a seat in front and a basket in the back. We made many circles around the parking lot either pushing her or her pushing the cart. Unfortunately, at one point, she stumbled and got tangled with the stroller handle. It came down on her finger and scraped it along the concrete a bit. Bless her heart, you could tell it really hurt. She nursed (which makes everything better) then decided that Daddy hugs were in order. We walked back to the car and Dave had her half buckled in when she started to cry again and said her finger still hurt and she needed more Daddy hugs. SO, of course, he got her back out and obliged her need for Daddy hugs. Good Daddy! Today she says it still hurts, and it looks pretty bruised, so I imagine it does. Poor baby!!

Friday, June 03, 2005


Boy is she all about her daddy right now! We both wish we had a dollar for every time she says "daddy" in an evening. She asks for him when she first wakes up, she follows him when he leaves the room and wants to go with him when he runs an errand. About a week ago, she and I had a cute conversation. I heard her in her room when she woke up in the morning.
D: "Mommy!"
W: "Good morning, baby."
D: "I want Mommy to pick me up"
W: "OK"
D: "and take me to daddy!"

A couple of nights ago we were finishing dinner and she said "Daddy! Daddy! I want Daddy to hold me. But not Momma."

Of course, a short time later, she had a little bump on something and immediately wanted me. Funny how that works.

All evening long we hear "Dady, daddy, daddy, I want daddy, I want daddy!" She's not crying or upset or anything- she just wants her daddy. At dinner, it's often followed by "I want daddy to feeeeeeeed me."

I think it's pretty cool, though. Their relationship has grown so much since I started working every other saturday with Dillon staying home with Dave. He's so much more comfortable in taking care of her now. In the beginning, all he could do was take care of her. Now they go to the museum on a regular basis, they go shopping for yard stuff or even Mother's Day presents. I was particularly impressed by his willingness to take her to JCPenney's to go Mother's Day shopping. He said that she got under the clothes in the racks and loudly proclaimed "Look Daddy- I'm in a cage!" They also have the tradition of making "Daddy eggs." They are scrambled eggs with some combination of cheese, mushrooms, sausage and/or shrimp and/or bacon in them. She LOVES them and when they didn't have all the stuff they needed one time, he loaded her up, they went to the grocery store to get what they needed, then came back home and made Daddy eggs. What a good daddy he is!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

JulieBear in the sling Posted by Hello

That's a sling that I made especially for carrying Dillon on my back. We used it Saturday when we went to the nursery to buy some plants. I figured it would be a good way to keep her out of the multitude of things that she doesn't need to be in in a nursery. Saturday evening, she wanted to use the sling to carry her babies around. First she wanted to carry robot, but that didn't work too well since he can't sit. So, I suggested Julie Bear which worked like a charm. She carried her around for a while and was quite proud of herself.

We used the sling again today when we went hiking with our friend Mardrey. Actually, we went geocaching It's the second time we've been. You take a Global Positioning Satelite (GPS) to find the coordinates where someone has hidden a small box of stuff in the woods. You follow the trail to the coordinates, do a little searching because a GPS is only accurate to about 30 feet in the woods, then search through the goodies to trade for items that you bring in. Today we went to Quechee Gorge. Dillon wanted to be carried most of the way, so I was glad I had the sling with me. I ended up carrying her in front of me with the sling which actually worked pretty well. The added benefit was that we were able to snuggle together to stay warm, since it was a chilly 50 something degrees and being in the woods didn't provide much sun. It was a beautiful hike, though and I am so glad we went. Strangely enough, the laundry was, in fact, still waiting on me when I got home as everyone says it will be when you opt to go do something fun rather than something not.

The thrill over the last few days is that she has started tell us "I love you." It's almost made both of us cry. First she told Dave "Dillon loves Daddy," then this morning said "I love you without me having said it first. Such a sweet baby.

We got tickled at her on Sunday night. We traded some babysitting time with some friends. Ben, who is a month older than Dillon, came over on Sunday night. Almost from the moment he got here, Dillon wanted to change his diaper. She was convinced that he was wet and needed a new diaper on and kept following him around telling him to lay down so she could change his diaper. He just looked at me like "What's her deal?" Then I gave them a little snack and she kept wanting him to put a bib on. Dave told him to get used to it- all his life there'd be a girl trying to mother him.

Like that's such a bad thing!

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Whew! We made it!

Cutie! Posted by Hello

We made it through 3 months of juggling 3-4 days of work per week for me with child care here at home with Courtney and at Locust Creek one day per week, and with Dave taking care of her on the saturdays that I work. The last 3 weeks have been pretty tough with me picking up extra days knowing that I was cutting back starting yesterday. But we made it. Courtney's last day was last week. I think she was a little teary when she left friday night (she babysat for our anniversary), but it really wasn't working for her to make the almost 2 hour drive from where she now lives to here 2 days a week. Not only that, she was having a tough time finding a job that would work around the time here. It wasn't working well for us financially. We, and especially Dillon, will miss her, but I will really enjoy getting back to having more time with Dillon. Besides, we already have a couple of dates that Courtney has agreed to come back to babysit for us. We'll be able to afford to actually go on dates a little more often now that our child care costs have dropped so much!

So, here we are on a beautiful Tuesday. We made muffins this morning with Dillon helping stir. Then we went and played outside for a couple of hours. She's now napping which has definitely been one of the things that has suffered with me working more. She naps great for me, sometimes for Courtney and not at all for Dad. We'll go back out this afternoon after she wakes up.

I'm trying to think of what she's doing new. She has developed a fear/interest relationship with bugs, though it's more fear than interest. She comes unglued if she sees one in the house. They're ok if they're outside, though. She even wakes up in the middle of the night screaming (in my ear....) "Bug! Bug!!" She also has a fear of "Car will get you!" anywhere outside. But she LOVES to play in mine and Dave's car and will sometimes get quite upset that she isn't allowed to actually drive. Loud noises are also bothersome. Toilets flushing, food processor going, any number of things that makes noise, she now does not like and must be held if she is to be subjected to them.

We finally went for her 2 year appointment a couple of weeks ago. We had an appointment not long after her birthday, but the pediatrition had to go on medical leave and it took 2 months of dates to get one that would work for me. She weighed 26 pounds and measured 34 inches tall. No problems to speak of and no shots.

As for the cute things she says- when we were outside this morning, she said "So... ummm....there's a big rock right there, mom." She is also quite fond of asking me what something is then telling me "Its a truck mom." like "Duh don't you know that?!" She was also rubbing her daddy's chest they other evening and said "Oh, you silly little David!"

Silly kid!

Wednesday, March 30, 2005


The great thing about a verbal child is that you get an idea of what is going on in their head. Sometimes it's as clear as a bell as in "I want more!" And then, sometimes, you have conversations such as the one Dillon & I had this morning while I was getting her dressed-
D: "Listen to me" (said while holding my face with both of her hands)
W: "OK"
D: "When the stairs come down, then we can dance."
W: "Alright"

Huh?! She was completely intent on telling me this. I guess it would be kind of bad if that did make sense to me. I do have a few years of education and verbal ability on her.

The other conversation we had this morning was even better. We were sitting, cuddling on the couch not long after she woke up.
W: "I love you baby."
D: "I love you baby."

That one made perfect sense and made me a little teary.

She wanted to wear the sling to carry her bear around yesterday morning. So, I put it on her, wrapped it around so she wouldn't trip and she carried the bear around for a while. I love it when she imitates the things I'm really happy that I do!

She's been helping me cook, which really turns into quite an adventure. She drags her learning tower over to wherever I'm working. If whatever I'm stirring doesn't involve raw meat or eggs, I'll let her help. She generally does pretty well provided that I picked a bowl that was plenty big for my little helper bee. When she starts getting a little wild with it, or it's time to move on to the next stage of dinner, I'll get her a little bowl with just a small amount of whatever it was and let her keep stirring. Once she gets bored, she starts feeding it to Satchmo. Then he gets underfoot because he's so focused on getting a bite of food from her that I invaribly accidently kick him, which sends him scurrying out of the way. This makes Dillon laugh, so then she wants to kick him to get the same reaction. It's incredible how fast this vicious cycle gets set up, just from stirring something in a bowl!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

All by herself

This is the latest addition to "Dillon do it." It now has to be "all by herself." Often that's OK-- sometimes it's not, like when it involves carrying breakable items from point A to point B. Or finding animals on the computer. But socks and shoes she does pretty well with. Pants go well sometimes. This morning she put her shirt on by herself and just needed help with the sleeve. To her credit, she came to me and asked for help with the sleeve rather than just sitting there screaming as she used to do. She's also gotten into picking out her own clothes, which makes for some pretty interesting outfits. She often picks dresses, which is funny because I never wear them. I think this is one of those things that goes beyond imitation and is wholly her choosing.

Bless her heart, she's a bit of a dishelved mess right now. She has a cold and is getting 3 teeth- a molar and 2 eye teeth- all at the same time. On top of all of that, her hair's just long enough to be wild looking , but not long enough to actually style in some way. So, there's this constant stream of watery eyes, snot and drool with this wild hair. But, despite a few tearful moments when not feeling well just gets the better of her, she's really pretty pleasant and happy. She was even able to smile at people in the grocery store yesterday.

The new job is going well. Dillon is enjoying playing with Rowyn, my boss' little girl. There was a little nervousness in starting the second day, because historically for Dillon, the second day was harder than the first, but it went beautifully. It's really cause for a huge sigh of relief from both me and Rowyn's parents. They really like having Dillon there because it's a social opportunity for Rowyn. I like having Dillon close so I can see her during the day. I think the being able to see her during the day has really helped with the transition. Plus there are all the toys that she doesn't have at home and 2 big dogs and some cats to play with and chase around. Does sound kind of heavenly for a 2 year old, huh?

Monday, February 28, 2005

Happy 2nd Birthday, Dillon! Posted by Hello

Sorry for the delay in updating! Life has gotten a good bit busier with the start of the new web design job. I'm really enjoying it though! It also means a lot more time at the computer, so sometimes it's a little tough to motivate myself to sit down at it again to do some updating. But, here it is, at last.

2 years old! The picture was taken the evening before her birthday as we were getting ready for her very small birthday party. It was Dave & I, Nana and Courtney. Dillon had fallen asleep early in the evening. Courtney arrived while she was asleep, so when she woke up, she was completely confused as to why Courtney was eating dinner at her house. And what are all the new things you are giving me and wanting me to play with? And why are you all of the sudden encouraging me to eat chocolate cake? Bless her heart, she never could quite get it all sorted out in her mind as to what was going on. On her actual birthday we went to our local science museum where she had a great time, then after naptime we went up to the hospital to see Dave who was on call in the ICU. I think she loved running around the hospital as much as she did the museum. Nana bought her a helium balloon that came untied and went floating way, way, way up high. The gift shop was kind enough to replace it, but, of course, she wanted the one that got away. The replacement has not been nearly as loved as that first one was.

So, I thought I'd make a little rundown of her likes and dislikes at 2 years old.
Likes: Running, playing with the digital camera, playing with the metal bowls, babies (the stuffed variety more so than the live variety), nursing, climbing all over Daddy, Satchmo, working puzzles, reading books, going to "see kids" (any activity in which there will be other children present), looking at herself in the mirror, cheese, spinning in the desk chair, those purple snow boots

Dislikes: falling down in the snow, staying in the nursery at church, having her hair brushed, having her teeth brushed, being in the car seat for more than about 1/2 an hour, more than 3 bites of food at a time, Satchmo stealing her food

Could take it or leave it: bathtime, playing with play-doh, painting, coloring with crayons

She continues to amaze us at her verbal abilities. Her sentences have gotten more and more complex. Dave pointed out the other day that she will also try to rephrase things if you tell her you don't understand what she is saying. Sometimes it's sucessful, sometimes not, but it's pretty amazing that she tries. She's learning some of the individual letters from the puzzle from Mimi & Addy. She has left and right down more often than not.

Really, she is just a happy kid. She such a joy to be with-- an exhausting one, but a joy nonetheless. Sometimes I wish she'd let me one mess under control before she creates a new one! But it is just so amazing to watch her learning. It's a joy to watch she & Dave together. I really miss her the days that I'm away from her, but the time is coming soon when that will be less. The days will be warmer and we'll be able to be outside more. Dave will have finished 2 of his 6 years of residency training. Good as it is now, life will be even better.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005


Just over the last week or so, Dillon has learned the art of giving a dirty look. Several times now I've seen her give a dirty look to another child that is trying to take another toy from her or knocks her over. She's also learned the art of being indignant. She and I were sitting on the floor eating tortilla chips and dip the other night. She took a bite of one then put it back in the bowl. Thinking that she didn't want it, I ate it. A minute or so later, she went to get it and realized it was gone. Very indignantly (and very clearly)she asked "Did YOU eat Dillon's?" "Ummmmm...yes" I replied rather sheepishly, "I'm sorry." Then came the dirty look. She was very clearly upset with me for having eaten her chip. She did forgive me, though, thank goodness!

I start this week at my new web design job. Dillon & I went to see the office and the house where she'll be staying while I'm working. We also got to meet Jeanne's (my new boss)little girl, Rowyn who is 18 months. We were practicing Rowyn's name on the way there since it's a little tough to pronounce when you're just learning to talk. It still frequently came out "Go see Robe." Dillon had a good time there and was even fine when I left for about 45 minutes to go see the new office building. I'll actually be about 3 miles away from where she'll be, but will be able to see her for lunch (and hopefully get her down for a nap). She'll stay at the house with Courtney tomorrow and then will go with me on Thursday.

She's getting into counting recently. "12345" happens a lot. She's also added "678910" to it. You can ask her how many feet she has and she'll tell you 2. Mostly she's just reciting numbers, but I've heard her actually count things out to 4. She's also starting to recognize specific letters, especially if you ask her to point to a particular letter on a page. For some letters she can just tell you what they are, but she definitely recognizes more than she can put a label on. I kind of think of it as the difference in difficulty between a multiple choice question and a fill in the blank question. The fill in the blank is more difficult even if it is the exact same question as the multiple choice.

One week from today she'll be 2 years old. I still can't believe it. We have a couple of friends with brand new babies. It's so amazing to look at those babies and remember her being that size. I can't honestly say which age is my favorite because they've all been so fun- although there's something to be said for the stage where they stay where you put them! Now we're more at the "Will I ever get to go pee all by myself again?!" stage! I still love it, I have to say.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Why 2 year old's shouldn't shave!

This was something that she and Courtney did one day. Courtney said she loved it! She certainly fakes it well if she didn't love it. You gotta love that smile. Actually, she's turning into quite a ham for the camera. She'll sit for just a few seconds to have her pictures made if you ask her to. But a few seconds is all you get so you better be ready.

Our big news over the last week is the job offer I received to work with my instructor from the web design class I took this past fall. I will be working 1-2 days per week at the hospital then 2 days per week at Locust Creek (the web design company). Once I'm through training at Locust Creek, then I will be able to do some of the work from home. The other great thing about this is that I will be able to bring Dillon with me when I am working in the office. For the time being, Courtney is still going to be coming 2 days a week. One of the days I'll be working at the hospital, then one of the days at Locust Creek. The other day at Locust Creek, Dillon will be with me. I'm really excited about this and think that it could work into a really good situation for us, even long-term.

I hosted a home party thing on Sunday with all kinds of child-related products. There were some really cute barrettes that I wanted to try in Dillon's hair since it is finally getting long enough to be in her eyes. As I came toward her with the barrette, she told me loudly "Don't like it! Don't like it!" So, no cute barrettes in Dillon's hair, I suppose. I trimmed her bangs just a little this morning. She was starting to look like such a little ragamuffin, that I had to trim them a bit. She did great with it and her hair looks so much better already.

We got about a foot of snow Saturday night with about another 3 inches falling today. She's fascinated with the snow plows-- only when she says snow plow, it comes out sounding much more like snow gow. The are lots of "Snow gow doin'?" and "Snow gow go?" going on around here. Fortunately she didn't tack the "stupid" to the front of snow plow when hearing us label it as such Saturday night after finding that the stupid snow plow knocked the door off of our mailbox and scattered the mail on the road. The city is going to replace it, but since it is still standing and it was just the door that was knocked off, then we'll be put on a list for replacement. I got the distinct feeling that this was not a new occurence for them.

Naptime is over today, and there is playing and dancing and chasing around to be done. We'd go play outside if it weren't 15 degrees outside!

Monday, January 17, 2005

23 months

How did she get to be 23 months old?! I find myself more often lately describing her as being almost 2. Wait! How can she be almost 2? Can it really be 2 years ago that I was 8 months pregnant and ready to pop?

To watch her now is amazing as it has always been. I've been working on framing some pictures of her from the first year of her life. She's changed so much! I suppose it's cliche to comment on how they are little sponges at this age and just soak up everything. She really does, though. She spouts off random numbers and letters and sometimes even gets them right. She knows right foot and left foot. She has her own set of "rules" (babies must not wear clothes being one). She has her own opinions. She has favorites. She is becoming more and more of her own person.


I suppose I should warn that there's the possiblilty of nostalgia overkill over the next month as her birthday looms closer. The plans are for a small celebration because it feels like the right thing to do rather than a larger party. We've talked about getting her a good-quality toy xylophone or maybe some wooden food to "cook" with on the cardboard stove that I made for her months ago and she STILL plays with. Maybe a couple of books. Definitely some chocolate cake as it is something she has developed an affinity for since her last birthday. She'll now zero in on chocolate and tell you "Want choc-ate!"

Still don't know if it's a good idea to have real candles on the cake, though. A 2 year old and fire just doesn't seem like a good idea!

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Dillon do it

She has learned what has to be the second most popular phrase of toddlerhood-- "Dillon do it." I would think that it could only be beaten by "No" in the frequency of use in the typical toddler vocabulary. I think for Dillon, it is actually for popular than "no." Her favorite activity to do on her own is putting on her pants. In fact, I noticed that she was quiet the other morning, checked on her to find her happily going through a basket of clean laundry, trying to put on every pair of her pants she could find. So, all told, when I found her doing this, the she had on the pants I dressed her in, a second pair of pants, a pair of tights and a pair of socks. A fashion statement all it's own! It was absolutely hysterically funny!

I have learned to use this need to dress herself to my advantage. If I need for her to be busy for a few minutes, I just give her a pair of pants and let her go to work :-)

We went, very briefly, to a birthday party today for one of the little boys in our playgroup. Her turned one yesterday. He is Indian and it must be a part of their culture to celebrate birthdays in a big way. There must have been seating and food for 50-75 people. We went early and left after about 1/2 hour because the party started at just about her naptime. Between a huge group of people, loud music, a bunch of ballons that kept getting popped and the proximty to naptime, it was pretty easy to bow out of the party early. I'm glad we made an appearance, but it was really just WAY too much for my personal taste. As fun as all the stuff was to her, she definitely had a look of just being overwhelmed by it all.

We also had the issue of the snow to deal with. We got probably on the order of 6 inches of snow today. It is gorgeous! I'm not sure how much she'll like walking in it since it's so deep. We'll see tomorrow as there will be a request to "Walk in snow!" followed by a request of "Dillon do it!" when it comes time to zip up her coat.

So when will there be a request to do all the snow shoveling?

Monday, January 03, 2005

Tower building

She loves crawling up on ths table! She also loves to jump off of it onto a pillow. Thus far she has waited until someone is sitting on the floor by the table to catch her. Hopefully she won't get a lot braver for a little while- at least until she can land a little more steadily on her feet.

She surprised us the other day by rattling off about 70% of the alphabet. It wasn't all in order, but it was definitely the alphabet. Up until then, all she'd really said was ABC and EFR. She's also learning the motions to that little song "Head and Shoulder (Knees and Toes..)" Dave got her one of the Baby Einstein videos that has several kids singing this song in it. She just grins from ear to ear, touches her head then bends down and touches her toes.

She's really enjoying all of her Christmas presents. I really need to go through and put away some of the older toys that she is no longer interested in. The tough part, of course, is that she suddenly becomes interested as soon as I try to put them up. Or she spots them wherever I have them put up and insists on seeing them. Yeah, that's why they never get put up....