Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Cora:  Mom, I'm really excited about church today.  I'm a BIG fan of Jesus!

Sunday, November 24, 2013


Since Thanksgiving is so late this year, we put our tree up last night.  Jupiter has decided it his own personal jungle gym and this morning had figured out how to climb up to the very top.  This was a great vantage point for him to peruse the house and the neighborhood goings on out the window.  However Milly knew this was, to put a point on it, bad.  She turned to Jupiter and said "JUPITER!  You are going to get a time out and then you are going to get in trouble and then you are going to go to JAIL JUPITER!"   Yikes.

Here's our little felon:

Friday, November 22, 2013


We had our first snow overnight last night.  Or at least the first one that really amounted to anything (though still not much by Iowa standards - but at least it stuck around).  I went in to wake Cora up and told her to peek our her window.  As she did, she turned to me with wide eyes and exclaimed "Mom!  It's Christmas!!"  Close enough my love.

Thursday, October 31, 2013


This week, Cora has come home singing the ever-present trick or treat song that kiddos always seem to pick up.  Namely:

Trick or treat
Smell my feet
Give me something good to eat
If you don't
I don't care
I'll pull down your underwear

Milly, wanting in on the action, quickly picked it up and joined in.  I explained to both of them that while it was a funny song, it really wasn't nice to sing about pulling down someone's underwear and maybe we should change that last bit.  Without hesitation Milly blurted out:

Trick or treat
Smell my feet
Give me something good to eat
If you don't
I don't care
I'll hug you

Boom.   Silly, yes.  But also encapsulates all that is so innocent and good in our little ones before they learn about all the world's biases, meanies, taunts and terrors.  If you don't give me something good, I don't care, I'll just hug you anyway.   I told her I LOVED her version.  And it is now the one we sing around our house.  :)

Thursday, October 3, 2013


Today I picked Milly up from daycare.  I noticed a huge green piece of butcher paper hanging in the class window but just wandered by.  As I was walking out with Milly, another teacher in the hall asked if I had seen what was on the paper.  Turns out they had asked each of the "juniors" (3 year olds) what they wanted to be when they grew up - and had written the answers on the big paper.  Among the answers like "princess" "firefighter" "pirate" and "ballerina" was Milly's answer:   "A Flying Purple Dragon. A Nice One. "

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Milly (crying): I don't want to go back to school [day care] tomorrow
Me: Why not babe?  Did you have a bad day?
Cora: Yeah she got yelled at and she got punched in the face.
Me:  Milly?  You didn't get punched in the face did you?
Milly:  Yeah I did - I got punched in the face.
Me:  By who honey?  Who punched you in the face?
Milly:  I did punched me in the face.
Me:  Who did honey?
Milly:  I did.
Me:  You punched yourself in the face?
Milly:  Yes. I did.
Me:  Ok.  Well.  Maybe you shouldn't do that anymore.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


I think it was a year or two ago - after I had children - when I realized that what I'll be able to recount to my grandchildren will be no less historical than those that shared personal accounts of the attack on Pearl Harbor; than the actions of the Nazis; than Hiroshima. But year after year when this anniversary comes around, I find myself even more determined to remember the love from all Americans that came like a tidal wave to fill the gaping hole left at Ground Zero. Random Acts of Kindness were the new norm. Flags few on buildings, on poles, on fences, on cars. People held doors, and held their tongues. People smiled through tears and hugged complete strangers on the street. Even back then, in my 20s, I knew that Utopia wouldn't last forever. So I cherished it even more. And that is what I choose to remember about this date in history.

Friday, September 6, 2013


Cora is reading "chapter books now" and I told her I was so proud and that "you can learn anything now! Anything you want to learn, you can read about it." She said (quite seriously) "Yes. There is much to learn." This girl.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


I was ready to read a story to Milly - this is how it went down:

Me: Pick out a book honey
Milly: You can pick!
Me: I get to pick? Whatever I want?
Milly: Yes! You can pick!
Me: I piiiiiiiick THIS one (Guess How Much I Love You)
Milly: {grabbing the book} No. {fishing through the books - grabbing Good Morning Good Night} Here - dis is the one you meaned to pick.
Me: Ahhh. Yes. I see.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


Oh we're in trouble. Milly was just using her chalk on the wall - I could SEE her. I told her "you better not be drawing on that wall Camilla!" She paused and said (very authoritatively) "Who's been drawing on this wall?! Cora! It was you! You clean it up!"


However she has her adorable moments as well.  For instance, when she thinks we're cross with her she will come over all smiles and say "Mommy... are you happy to me??"

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Tonight was "exhibitor" night at the Iowa State Fair.  This year was the first year I had entered any of my knitting projects and so I was excited to go and see who got ribbons for what.  Right inside the door, we saw my mom's beautiful crochet shawl had gotten honorable mention!  As I went around I eventually found all four of my items.  None with any ribbons.  It was pretty disheartening as one in particular I really thought had a good chance - the wedding shawl I knitted for my sister.  It had taken me months and I had made sure there was not one mistake in it.  This is a photo:

But I didn't want my kids to see my disappointment and I also wanted them to understand that winning isn't everything so we focused on the lovely things all displayed throughout the exhibit and were happy for those who did garner ribbons.

When I got home, Cora tucked away into her play room and I sat down to decompress.  I eventually called her on to bed and when I did she brought me this.  How could I not consider myself the luckiest winner ever??

Saturday, August 3, 2013


Today was one of those "feel like I just can't keep up" days.  And then the girls and I got in the car to run an errand.

Milly:  Mom.  Dere is poop on your car. A bird pooped on your car.
Me:  Yes. Yes it did.
Milly: {Pause}  Can you wash your car mom?

But then tonight there was this.  Tonight Cora told me she wanted to sing a song for ME at bedtime... she wanted to make one up. So this what she came up with:

Rainbows say goodnight

It will always be alright
Cuz mommy is right here
You don't need to fear
Rainbows say goodnight

Wednesday, July 31, 2013


On the way in to work today out of the blue:

Milly:  I want to color my hair purple today.  Sparkly purple hair.  Then I'll be a princess and I'll be pretty.

Monday, July 15, 2013


I had the “drug talk” with Cora tonight as I was tucking her in (she’s 6). I wasn’t planning on it, but it just kinda happened. She’s a worrier and asked me about her field trip at daycare tomorrow - she asked “what if they take us somewhere bad”. I wasn’t thinking and said “Cora, it’s daycare honey - it’s not like they’re going to take you to a crack house.” That started the ball rolling. Figured we may as well have the talk and so went with it.
BUT then Ryan went to kiss her goodnight and I neglected to mention our talk. He came downstairs looking shell shocked and said “Why did our daughter just explain what a crack house is to me?”

Saturday, July 6, 2013


Cora (to Milly): You don't have brown sugar on YOUR breakfast [scrambled eggs for Milly, oatmeal for Cora] so you should be jealous!

Milly: No. I'm not goin' be jealous. I'm just Milly!

Excellent lesson!! :)

Friday, June 14, 2013


Cora and I were just talking about the storm and how lightning is "God's fireworks". She thought on it and told me:

"Mom, maybe heaven is upsidedown to us, so God's sky touches our sky and Her fireworks go up in Her sky and down to our ground?" 



Just had a late "before bedtime" entry:

Ryan asked Milly - in what I can only assume was a rhetorical question - "Why do you never listen to me?" But yet Cora went ahead and provided an answer. 100% NOT sarcastically she said "Because she doesn't like you? I mean, I don't know that for sure. It's just a guess. You know, my best guess." THAT was one belly laugh mom couldn't hold in!!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Milly just came in from being outside with her dad (who had mowed our bushland yard). She was quiet in the kitchen so I hollered in and asked her what she was doing:

"I'm fixing my foots. My feets. My feet ... foots."

I walked in to find her on the floor in front of the stove, with my good dishtowel calmly cleaning mud and dirt off her feet. 

I said "Oh sweetie, that towel is for clean hands - not dirty feet! We should use a paper towel!" 

She responded "But I'm doing it myself!" Well, yes, but....

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Cora was telling me about an altercation out on the playground today.

Cora: Mom, one of the teachers tripped on the playground and said the "s" word today!
Me:  Oh wow. That's not good. I bet that teacher was really sorry!
Cora:  Yep! She tripped and, well, I can't say it.
Me: {intrigued}  What did she say - it's ok, you can tell me.
Cora: She tripped and said "Stupid crack!"  Yeah!  She said {whispers} "stupid"!  I've also heard teachers say the j-word AND the o-word!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


Cora to me as we follow Milly up the stairs:
"Milly is so cute. I'm so glad we picked her out. She is just darling."

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


This weekend, while hanging out in the W Midtown for Aunt Gigi's wedding, Meme gave the girls some fun light up necklaces.   Milly came over wearing hers and proudly announced "I'm a Fashion Pizza."  After a little dissecting I realized what she meant was "fashionista".

Monday, April 29, 2013


Milly was asked to use the bathroom before bed. She couldn't "go". She informed me: "Mommy the pee pees aren't comin' out. They're just busy. They're just busy right now. They'll come back later ok?"

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


I got a two-fer today.  First, my oldest:

As I was tucking her in tonight:
Cora: Mom, guess what I learned today?
Me: What's that?
Cora: When you go to jail, you are not allowed to shave. I mean they have shavers but you can't have them until your beard gets like way to down to here {gestures} and then they do it for you.
Me: {trying to sound nonchalant} Who told you that honey?
Cora: My teacher at daycare.

(By the way - I did try and ask her how that came up.  She told me "we read a book about it."  Ahhh ok.)

And the youngest's contribution:

Milly came home today still a bit sick, tired and CRANKY.  She also came home with a large blue fingerpainted blob on paper.  Trying to redirect the whiny, cranky, mess, I asked:

Me:  Milly!  This is beautiful!  Is this a pool?
 - to which she sullenly responded
Milly:  NO!  It's just BEW! [blue] 
- and stomped off

Sunday, April 14, 2013


Milly's birthday party was yesterday so she got lots of great toys.  Sister got an "unbirthday" present from Meme and Poppi that was a Hello Kitty make up set.  With the set came a bow-shaped ring with body glitter gel inside it. Cora was not a fan and graciously offered it to her little sister.  Milly now treats it as a sacred object.  She has a small purple and lime green gift bag that she carries around as a purse.  As she was huddled over it I overheard this:

Milly:  I put all my treasures in he-ow.  They are mine and I love them.

When she went on to something else I peeked inside.  It was the Sacred Ring, a blue button, and some barbie accouterments (one shoe, a place setting from the new Barbie Beach House) a business card and some other odds and ends.  But in the eyes of a newly minted 3 year old, they are treasures!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


We've been telling Milly for weeks and weeks that three year olds cannot have pacis.  So today is the big day.  The Paci Fairy comes today.  So far that is going over like a ton of bricks.  While we were going around the house having her gather up her pacis she was bawling.  We got gems like these:

"No take my paci 'way from meeeee!"


"I no wanna be three anymo'!"


"No! I won't!"

It's gonna be a long night....

Thursday, March 28, 2013


This morning from Cora as she was getting dressed, but didn't want to:

"I am going to DIE TO DEATH! And I will be dead and NAKED!"

Noooo we have nothing to worry about in the tween years. Nope.

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Heard my girls giggling and went upstairs to see.  They were both in their bathroom on the same stool brushing teeth and laughing with each other. Milly had just gone potty on her own.  And as I stood and peeked in, I realized this was a new chapter -  one that is happisad.  Sad that my girls will never again need me to the level they did last week.  But happy that it is as it should be.  :)

Sunday, March 10, 2013


Apparently no one but mommy will do while potty training. But when mommy was elbows deep in something else, daddy had to do. But right outside the bathroom Milly turned around and pointedly said 

"You stay RIGHT here. Not one step more! I'll do it myself. This is MY life daddy."

Oh man. This is not looking good for the teen years...

Thursday, February 28, 2013


Last night at dinner:

Cora:  Mommy - how old is Daddy?
Me:  He's 35
Cora:  And  you're what? 91 right?

Go to your room kid.

Friday, February 15, 2013


It's official. I've horrified my first child with a "when I was a kid..." story!  It went like this:

{Me in the bathroom getting ready for a neighborhood party}
Cora: It's a good thing I don't have to run downstairs - I gotta go to the bathroom right now! {goes to the bathroom}
Me:  Did you know when I was a little girl I only had one bathroom in my whole house?  So if someone was in there when I needed to go potty I just had to hold it!
Cora: {horrified}  WHAT?  Did you ever pee your pants?
Me:  I don't know - you'll have to ask Meme.  I don't ever remember doing that but I may have.
Cora:  Wow.  So what did you do if you were upstairs and had to go potty?
Me:  Our house only had one floor - all the rooms were on the first floor.
Cora:  WHAT??  How is that even possible?
Me: {laughs}  AND if someone was in the bathroom taking a bath when I needed to go, I had to wait for them to finish taking their WHOLE bath!
Cora:  I have no idea how you lived like that.

MUAhahahahahahaha. Now it has officially begun!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Cora is very excited about Valentine's Day coming up.  Tonight as I was tucking her in bed, she asked me:

"Mom, tomorrow night, when you come check on me, in the middle of the night, when I'm sleeping ... can you lean down and whisper in my ear "Happy Valentimes Cora!"

Sunday, January 27, 2013


Sometimes Miss Milly will not particularly tell us the truth when we ask about her, ahem, diaper status. Which leads us to resort to the sniff test.  Which then led to this today:

Cora: "It's kind of in'propriate to smell someone else's bottom parts when they're pooping mom." 

Ummmm ok can't argue with that...

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


When Linda (Milly's care provider) mentioned on our way out that she was tired, Milly yelled after her "Yaya, you hab a good weekend. And you get some sleep ok? Go take a nap Yaya." LOL

I also love Milly's newfound love of (and misuse of) the word "very"  With examples such as:

That ball is very over there.
We are very in the car.

Finally, Milly's responses to general questions are very thorough and are cracking me up - no one-word answers for this child.  For example, if I ask her "Milly did you eat your sister's gum?"  "No I did not."  or "Milly are you in the playroom?"  "Yes I am"

Tuesday, January 8, 2013


This past Sunday Milly was enjoying some playtime in the basement with her dad down there to supervise. As I was sitting on the couch knitting I suddenly heard:

"A wittle help... I need a wittle help here.  Ryan??"   

Then later at dinner Miss Cora got corrected by her dad for being a bit squirly at the table.  She looked down at her food, pushed it around with her fork and quietly announced:  "Awk-ward."   Oh my.