The Half-Time Report

The other day my husband was describing Babyman to a friend and used a new analogy that I liked quite a bit.  In honor of the impending Superbowl, I will share it with you here: "It's like being a football coach," he explained.  (In this analogy, my husband and I are one coach and Babyman is the entire opposing team, because yes, he's that big of a force.)  "Basically, every few weeks -- not all the time, but on a cycle -- he mounts a really tough offense.  He's got a new game and we're just falling for it for a few days.  Then about two or three days in, we huddle -- it's like half-time -- ... [READ MORE]


Mealtimes are once again a battlefield.  This is a cyclical occurrence.  Sleep and food are the two things Babyman can control, so when he is transitioning through a hard-core Testing Twos phase, nap strikes and high-chair tantrums are his tools of choice.  They are effective, too, when it comes to cutting a parent off at the knees.  Both are deeply psychological weapons, as the parent knows what even the toddler himself can't grasp: that an infuriating mealtime or a missed nap is but the first phase; it is invariably followed by the Exhausted and Famished Toddler phase, a phase in which all ... [READ MORE]

All Good Things…

Did you ever see that Friends episode where Joey and Chandler's TV gets stuck on the porn channel?  Not to ruin the plot if you haven't, but the upshot is that they love it, until they realize all that porn is warping their sense of reality. Babyman appears to be experiencing a similar struggle surrounding the end of the Christmas season.  The past month has totally messed with his expectations: he wakes in the morning expecting chocolate at the breakfast table (the inevitable Advent calendar hangover); he studies every piece of mail, every package, and every decorative store display before ... [READ MORE]

Stone Soup

This holiday season, Babyman's teachers are all about cooking.  A single recipe takes a week to produce: first, the students discuss and vote on ingredients (this spirited debate I would looooove to see; I can just imagine Babyman offering up "chocolate," repeatedly and exclusively).  Then they go shopping, prep and, finally, cook. Our preschool offers a project-based curriculum where the subject matter is derived from the students' collective interest in a certain topic, e.g. Transportation, Weather/Temperature, Bears, and so on.  If that sentence sounded sort of ridiculous, please be ... [READ MORE]

On Giving Thanks and Running in Heels

I cannot find the interview to quote directly, but not long ago I was lusting after a pair of never-to-be-mine Jimmy Choo sandals and reading an article about the glamorous founder of Jimmy Choo, Tamara Mellon.  She was describing her own life, something to the tune of, she might have a personal training session followed by a parent-teacher conference for her daughter in the morning, and then she runs this global brand all day, and then she has some fabulous fashion party to go to in the she needs to keep three pairs of shoes in the car to be prepared for anything. This of ... [READ MORE]

Stop and Smell the Pepperoni

In one of the previous posts I described a recent battle over hand-washing before dinner.  Turns out, hand-washing has become something of a trigger point in our routine.  Using my keen observational skills, however, I am slowly but surely getting better at recognizing the signs that may presage a hand-washing meltdown, and I have developed a handy trick for skirting the issue (which, I have no doubt, will cease to work the very minute I hit "Publish" -- because that's how toddlers roll). You see, a good chef always washes his hands -- before he can put on a "cooking glove" (pot-holder) or ... [READ MORE]

Animal Crackers in my Alphabet Soup

My mother, Babyman's Nana, loves to throw theme parties.  Whether she is having her next-door neighbor over to celebrate their dogs' birthdays (last year's theme: Go Dog, Go!, inspired by one of Babyman's favorite books) or staging a holiday-themed Jeopardy match for me and my sister on Christmas morning, there's always an excuse to celebrate. When I was growing up, a trusty standby for these types of events was shaped food.  What is shaped food, you may wonder?  Well, it's heart-shaped meatloaf on Valentine's Day, or bunny-rabbit shaped pasta over Easter weekend, and so on and so ... [READ MORE]