Monday, February 07, 2011

Pathologically Eclectic Rubbish List

Bonus geek points if you catch the reference in the title. (I'll explain it in a comment right before I put up my next post.)

I have a bunch of things rattling around in my head, preventing me from settling down and focusing on today's to do list. So I'm going to write them down here. One of the things rattling around is an idea for a "real" post- maybe I'll get to that later today, maybe tomorrow.


Thank you all for the kind comments on my post about Saturday. Sunday was indeed much better. Petunia slept better Saturday night- although Hubby held her for some of that time. He fell asleep holding her, though, so who knows if she actually needed to be held the whole time? I don't care. I got some sleep, and that was all that I cared about at that point.

Petunia was in a wonderful mood all day Sunday, until the very end. She got whiny, and squirmed out of our arms when we tried to comfort her, and just generally seemed uncomfortable. Sure enough, after her bath, she disappeared into her room for some privacy. I'd go in from time to time and ask "are you ready for me to change your diaper?" and she'd shake her head and say "noooo". The funniest part was that she was looking at her books while she worked on her diaper. I guess that tendency starts young?

She eventually finished up, let me change her diaper, and was MUCH easier to get down for the night than she had been the previous two nights. She also slept really well. So, now we have a solid theory for what messes with her sleep. But there isn't a darn thing we can do about it, other than delay bedtime if we suspect she needs a little more time to, um, work things out.


I've heard that the interview last week went well, and that an offer is probably forthcoming. But no offer has yet showed up, so I wait. And try to decide how much time I should invest in applying for a couple of other jobs I've seen that would do, but aren't great fits for me, and how much time I should invest in clearing things off our household to do list. 

I'll probably spend time updating the personal website that I would use if I were to start to seriously pursue contracting gigs- if this job falls through, I think short term contracts may be my next best option.


We took the girls down to a park at Mission Bay in the afternoon. Pumpkin ran around and had a lot of fun. Petunia practiced carrying sand on her shovel, and then finally figured out how to climb up onto the play structure on her own. They were both so happy. It was one of those moments where you remember why you're glad you had kids.

On the way home, I looked at Hubby and said that I thought it was time to get down the little percussion set we'd bought ages ago and hidden. He agreed, so we did. Pumpkin was ecstatic. Petunia liked the maracas. The three of us marched around the house making noise like a demented hare krishna group while Hubby made dinner.

And life was good. Until Pumpkin decided that she wanted a turn with the maracas.


Hubby and Pumpkin are both loving the CD Santa brought the family this year: Snack Time, by the Barenaked Ladies. Pumpkin sings along in the back seat, and we all enjoy the respite from the Chinese CDs she had fixated on previously.

My favorite song on the CD is "Pollywog in a Bog", because of the little rap section, which makes excellent use of the refrain "jump, jump!" and just cracks me up.


Petunia slept well last night, but I did not. First of all, I was sure she'd wake up between 10 and 10:30, so I stayed up reading waiting for her. She did not wake up until 11:30. I had turned the light off at about 10:40, and was just falling asleep when she woke up. (Yes, Pumpkin's slow to turn off brain is probably a genetic gift from me. Hubby usually falls asleep as his head hits the pillow. It takes me 30-60 minutes.) She nursed and went right back to sleep. Great! But she still has a cough from her last cold, and every few minutes or so, she'd cough. Meanwhile, Hubby (who has finally caught the cold) was snoring. I would have gone to the sofa to sleep in peace, but that generally wakes Petunia up. I finally propped Petunia's head up on my arm, which made her stop coughing, and slept the first part of the night snuggling her.

So, I'm tired today, and debating the relative merits of taking a nap after lunch and trying to cross lots of things off of my to do list so that I feel productive. A short nap would be the perfect compromise, but I'll bet that if I fall asleep, I'll sleep for two hours, and wake up feeling disoriented and groggy.

What I really want is a decent night's sleep. Naps are great, but no substitute for actual sleep.


Pumpkin is having trouble with "B" at day care again. Things had improved after I spoke with the center's assistant director last time, and we thought everything was fine. But at drop off one day last week, Hubby witnessed B bullying Pumpkin, so he went and talked to the assistant director again, and then sent me a cryptic email about the event. Luckily, I called him and got the full story, because later that day, the director called me to discuss the problem. They're taking it seriously and I'm happy with the center's response. I don't know whether or not B's parents are responding well- the center's director implied not, but Hubby and B's dad had a little chat at the birthday party on Saturday, and all seemed fine to Hubby. I'm inclined to give them the benefit of the doubt- I think dealing with B's behavior without squashing her natural leadership tendencies would be difficult. Her parents are trying to walk a fine line.

It is already so hard to monitor what's going on out on the playground. I imagine it is only going to get harder as the kids get older. Luckily, Pumpkin is playing more with some of the other kids. I'll be setting up a playdate with one of the other little girls ("K", for those following along at home)- I spoke with her mom about it at the party, and she's up for it, too. I also bought a book on bullying for my Kindle. I picked The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystander, by Barbara Coloroso, because it promised to talk about preschoolers. I also looked at Queen Bees and Wannabes, by Rosalind Wiseman, but it seems to be aimed more at tweens. I'll probably need that, too- but not yet.

The entire situation just makes me sad. So far, Pumpkin still seems like her usual happy self. But I know that it bothers her that B is mean to her, so I want to try to figure out how to help her respond.


In news that is probably unrelated, but feels linked to me... Pumpkin is entering a "meltdown at the slightest provocation" phase. We've been through these before, and they drive Hubby bonkers. I can sympathize a bit more. After all, I have been known to meltdown into tears at inappropriate times, too. Still, I think we need to work with her on responding to disappointment in a less dramatic way. That should be fun. But her future colleagues will thank us for it.


Despite all my worries about Pumpkin, I think she's turning into a delightful little girl. K's mom told me that she was so happy when her daughter and Pumpkin started playing together more, because she thinks Pumpkin is just the sweetest little girl. Now, I know that she wouldn't exactly tell me if she thought Pumpkin was a brat, but she didn't have to say such nice things. So I'm taking her words at face value and feeling happy about them.

I also love watching Pumpkin play with Petunia. Petunia doesn't quite get the "playing together" thing yet, which frustrates Pumpkin. But she has learned how to take a step back, look at what Petunia wants to do, and help her with that. Just yesterday, Petunia was trying to get up on a chair to play with Pumpkin's computer. Pumpkin saw this, and went over and helped scoot her chair up to the little desk with the computer. Then she turned on her computer for Petunia, and selected a game that Petunia could play.


I'll end with a picture. Here is Petunia, practicing for her future in the rodeo and/or circus:


  1. Glad Petunia slept better, YAY for pretty-much-a-job-offer, and sorry that Pumpkin is dealing with a bully already :(

  2. Do post what you think about the"Bully..."book. I hate that it becomes an issue so early! Are we just looking for it more? I tend to be pretty passive, and don't like confrontation, so when I see another little kid take a toy from my monkey we always talk about it later..."you know that if you weren't done playing with it you can say no, that they can have a turn when you're done, right?" But then I worry that I'm ruining the message when I encourage sharing with friends. He seems fine but it kills me, and brings out some best let lie latent momma bear tenancies.

  3. Andrea5:38 PM

    I love Pollywog in a Bog! There's a cute video that goes along with it.

  4. Gosh I love that photo of Petunia! I don't have it in a picture, but just tonight Annie did that exact same thing, but on her little people school bus. Standing on the seat, hands on the handles. It's so funny that babies around the world are really not so different from each other in the things they do. Makes you realize that grown up people aren't so different either, we all come from the same place, precariously balancing on our tricycles/school buses, testing our boundaries.

  5. Good luck with jobs and sleep and bullies. Oh My!

  6. Oh god, someone must have got the babies together and told them that climbing is all the rage nowadays! In the last couple of days, Moo has started climbing into the basket of her little trolley, standing up and then rocking back and forth to make it move. Not so bad inside on the cork tiles, but a bit terrifying outside on the brick paving.

    And hurrah for a *decent* nights sleep. I got one last night, and oh, it just makes life so much easier to cope with, doesn't it?!

    Yay for the (nearly) job offer. It's maddening though, waiting for the details to become concrete.

  7. OK, so as promised: the title refers to one of the almost certainly apocryphal stories for the source of the name of Perl (a scripting language)- people joked that it stood for "Pathologically eclectic rubbish lister".

    Yes, I'm that lame.

  8. My daughter had a problem with another little girl at daycare. The little girl had told her, "You're not my friend," and that she wasn't a fast runner. They were little things, but completely devastating to my very emotional 3 year old. I told her that if someone said/did something mean, to say, "I don't like that," walk away and play with someone else. I didn't hear anything more about it from my daughter, but her teacher came up to me one day, and told me I should be proud of how assertive my daughter was being with this girl, so I am guessing she did it. I think the problem with the two girls was that my daughter really likes playing house, dolls, etc. and the other girl is more into running around. Since they are 3, they didn't understand that they are just different, and being friends doesn't mean they have to enjoy all the same activities. Now, however, the two are inseparable to the point where they kiss, not hug, when they leave at the end of the day. Learning how to interact with others is a tough, delicate thing, I think, and I wish I knew more about how to help my kids better navigate through it.

  9. I'm so sorry to hear about the challenges Pumpkin is still having with Miss B at daycare. Wishing you & yours mad coping skills, and hoping you both come out stronger for it.

  10. It breaks my heart to hear about any sort of bullying. You know we went through some issues at my girl's previous school, and it's just heart breaking. I hope that Pumpkin is able to get through this without it hurting too much and that she learns the skills to handle herself in the future. That's all we can hope for, right?

    Good luck with the job and the sleep!

    I love that Pumpkin is helping Petunia with what she wants to do. I often have to remind my girl that her little brother doesn't know what she wants or means when she tries to get him to play one of her games that he doesn't yet understand. But it's so nice to know they are playing together and trying to figure it out.

    Love that picture!


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