We are all set for our move on Saturday.
Movers were hired.
Boxes were packed.
Stuff we don't want to take was offloaded on freecycle.
Bulk pick up was scheduled for Thursday for stuff that needs to be thrown away.
City of Piedmont no parking signs for our street were picked up today.
Jenna was lined up for Saturday to get kids out of our hair.
Told the neighbors we are moving.
Change of address completed at post office.
New house is being painted and prepped for us. New stove. New microwave. Everything cleaned.
And we even got the keys.
It's happening! In just four days, we'll have a bedroom again. No furniture in either living room or den, but a bedroom with a bed for me and Michael. Really, what more can we ask for???
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
We are all set for our move on Saturday.
Monday, March 28, 2011
A while ago, I told Parker about how the digits of the multiples of 9 all added up to nine (ie that 2 x 9 is 18 and 1+8=9 and that 3 x 9 = 27 and that 2 + 7 = 9. He, obviously, thought that was pretty cool.
So today, several weeks later and completely of the blue, he says to me
"Mom, I think the the 9's at 11 and up add up to 18."
"Huh?" I say since only minutes earlier we were discussing waffles.
He repeats himself and then says, "9 x 11 is 99 and 9+ 9 =18."
I said, "Oh, right, but what about 12? Does it work for 12? I don't think so."
So, he thinks out loud, "Well, 9 x 12 is 108 and 1 + 0 + 8 doesn't equal 18. So oh well." Then we walks away and does something else.
But sure enough...if you do the math out and count the first two digits as one digit, he is right.
9 x 12 =108 and ten plus eight is 18
9 x 13 = 117 and eleven plus 7 is 18
9 x 14 = 126 and twelve plus 6 is 18
and so and so on.
I knew the day would come when Parker was smarter than me in math, but I didn't think that day would be today.
Plus...that little dude is sitting around thinking of math more often that I think he is.
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Ran the half marathon today. I felt a little faint and light headed the first few miles which kinda bummed me out. Then I felt ok for the next 4-6 miles. My legs were a bit tired today, so I felt really slow. The kids and Michael came out to cheer me on at mile 10, but when I got there, Elizabeth was having a meltdown. Parker gave me a flower and Miranda a tiny little sign that said Go Mom! I got a major stitch in my side just after the 25 miles mark (which meant I had one mile to go...not that I ran 25 miles). I had to walk a few blocks to make it go away, but then I was ok and ran the last 1/2 mile in. I beat my time from last year by about 8-9 minutes which is great, but I'm still damn slow. Afterwards I went to one of my friends house where a big bunch of us ate and hung out in the hot tub. I missed Parker's tball game, which left me feeling very guilty. I figure there will be tons of tball games and not that many after half marathon celebrations...
At least it's done.
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Miranda's Ballet class had a recital on Thursday. She was pretty excited about doing a "show" and despite the utter lameness of it all, she was thrilled. Elizabeth and I watched and I tried to video most of it. Here is one bit where they are pirates.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Me: Does anyone remember the name of our new exit off the freeway?
Parker: Is it butt?
Miranda: No, I think it is vagina.
Elizabeth: No, it's fart.
Parker: No, it's pee pee.
Miranda; No, it's poo poo.
Elizabeth: Nope. It's penis.
Me: yeah, our new exit is Penis.
When I went to pick up the girls today at school, the kids were all singing songs one at a time. Three kids went after I arrive, singing twinkle, twinkle or a, b, c and you could barely hear them. They were practically whispering.
Then Miranda gets up, walks to the front of the circle, stands there and sings Doe a deer in full voice, in tune and with some serious gusto. It was quite a thing. She got some major applause.
Elizabeth followed her, chose to sit instead of stand, sang very softly and forgot the words to "how do you solve a problem like maria".
This is what Miranda said on the way home from school today:
Miranda: Mom, I have been thinking about something bad and I want to tell you about it. I'm afraid that my throat will get broke.
Me: Why are you afraid of that?
Miranda: I don't know. I just am. I'm afraid a tiny pirate will come along and take a sword and cut my head off.
Me: Wow. That is scary. Did someone talk to you about that today at school.
Miranda: No. I'm just thinking about that.
Me: That isn't very fun. Can you think of something else?
Miranda: No! I can't think of anything except that think!
Me: What does Maria say when you don't want to be sad anymore... Whiskers on kittens...
Miranda: WHEN THE DOG BITES! WHEN THE BEES STING! WHEN I'M FEELING SAD! I SIMPLY REMEMBER MY FAVORITE THINGS AND THEN I DON'T FEEL SO BAD!
(End of conversation.)
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Went to the new house today. I'm buying some of the furniture (kitchen benches, bar stools) from the current tenant so I dropped off the check and we chatted for a bit. We're not entirely sure how we'll lay everything out, but we know that we don't have anything for the living room a this point. Perhaps we'll leave it empty and use it as a dance floor. Or we can leave all the boxes of books in there. Not sure yet. But I am sure there will be no kids' stuff in it. That stuff will be contained in playroom and bedrooms. I hope.
I saw an area I hadn't noticed before. Just off the playroom and behind the garage. I asked the tenant about it and wondered out loud if it was for storage and she said they used it as a music room. Interesting.
And speaking of music, the piano is not, in fact, staying. I think we'll end up getting one. Parker and Miranda would love it and there is the perfect little space for it in the living room in this nook near the front window.
The tenant also said they left a couple of the swings in the backyard and may leave the trampoline. Which would be awesome. We're getting one no matter what, but it would be nice not to have to assemble one. Such a nightmare.
I officially enrolled the kids in the new school today. It was easy and compared to Oakland felt like I was joining some elite club. Which I guess I am in a way. (reminded me of a seinfeld episode where he flies first class and enjoys warm cookies while elaine is stuck in coach). I already know the principal at the school as she was a mom at the kids' preschool last year. And two of the teachers are my boot camp buddies. Piedmont is a small place.
Movers scheduled for April 2nd. Got a sitter for the kids that day. Can't wait!
As we are packing up the house, we are finding all sorts of things we had totally forgotten about. We're also finding some really only pantry items.
One item said best used by 2002. Wow. We had that thing a long, long time.
But not as long as the curry cube that was found on the top shelf. That one, we moved from the Berkeley house and apparently forgot about.
Best used by 1996.
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Parker said today:
Are there three places you go when you are dead? I think you can either go to Heaven, be put in the ground or become a mummy. Is that right?
8 mile run in the pouring rain for me. Last long run before race next weekend.
Michael took kids to dentist appt with all three kids. No cavities. Parker should lose at least 2 baby teeth soon.
Bday party for girls.
Short trip with Kika to see where to get Aidan on Thursday while she is in hospital.
Packing. Packing. Packing. Back house almost done.
Free cycled over 100 paperback books that we had accumulated over the years.
Helped Parker make a solar system on a stick.
French toast for dinner.
Naked running around time.
Showers and bath.
Waiting for quiet.
Friday, March 18, 2011
Parker might be doing well in school, but it looks like his teacher might need a refresher course in writing...
"Parker is working at a high caliber in all academic areas. He is reading, writing, and excited about it all as we work on things in class. He is excited about all the work he does, and he excites others in class, making them wanting to learn more and more. He always does his best work and is diligent about completing all assignments to his degree of satisfaction. He is thriving in math and I am constantly trying to come up with new things to work with him on. It is a fun experience for me and wonderful to see him learn things so quickly. I look forward to watching his academic skills shine as the year progresses on."
Oh and I'm so glad SHE is having fun.
Last night Parker started asking me about earthquakes. He asked if we knew when they were gonna happen, what happened during one, how we would be safe, would we be killed, etc. He was genuinely upset about the whole topic, but kept asking me questions, becoming more and more upset. He was on the verge of tears during most of the conversation. We (first me then Michael) tried to re-assure him we would take care of him, while also trying to answer his questions factually and explaining what to do if there was one. I told him I was in a very big one in college and I was ok. This didn't seem to help him much.
I'm not sure where it all came from. Perhaps some kids at school were talking about Japan. But he didn't ask about tidal waves.
It was hard to see him so freaked out.
Which one of you Parker enthusiasts sent him the book?
Was it for his 6 and 1/4 birthday which he told us about 4 days ago???
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Appears to be moving day. A bit sooner than we thought, but that's ok with us. The next two weeks will be crazy busy, and then the month that follows as we prep our house for sale will be even crazier.
Time to pack!
I had just decided that Miranda would not do ballet class again for the next session. She really likes it, but since it is mostly just running around in costumes, which she can do at home and it really breaks up the day too much, we would skip it.
Then today, the teacher says that next week is the last class of this session and because Miranda is doing so well and is so focused and tries so hard on everything, she can move from pre-ballet to beginning ballet. She specifically said her pas de chat was very good.
Fuck. Fuck pas de chats.
I really need to get one of those money making machines to support all these talented kids.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Miranda is never the first to do anything. She isn't fastest. Or strongest. Or academically smartest. She is last to buckle in, to eat, to fall asleep, and in make believe games she is always the baby or baby sister or baby kitty. She is never the mom or big sister. I find it sad and frustrating. She actually doesn't seem to mind. (To her credit, she IS better at making friends than her siblings, by compromising more and reaching out in non bossy way. And she is much more imaginative and creative than her siblings being able to make us stories for hours on her own.)
Then about two weeks ago, I realized that she had been waking up with dry pull up at night. I asked her if she wanted to try without one and she said yes. She has not had one accident since then. I told her that not only was she done with pull ups forever, but she was done with "sleep diapers" at a younger age than anyone else in the family. (Parker used them until he was 5 and Elizabeth still really needs one every night.)
You should have seen the look on her face. She was so damn proud. She started dancing around, singing, and smiling. For a kid that never cares about being last, she was thrilled with being first.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
This morning when I saw Parker standing in his room with one sock on staring at the wall, I said to him, "Hey buddy, you need to put both socks on and then boots."
He says, "Oh yeah," and then adds, "Mom, sometimes I forget what I'm doing."
Monday, March 14, 2011
Got the call today that we got the house we wanted in Piedmont. We'll probably be all moved in in about a month. No more cabana for you out of town visitors, but I'm hoping our den and/or bonus room will suffice. We won't be moving the kids for 2 months of school this year. The kids will all be at the same school next year, called Wildwood, which is also the name of our street (although its a bit of a walk to school so we'll most likely drive there a lot). The girls will be in a morning program which is great since they will be so young and Parker will be full day.
I'm so relieved and happy and excited for the future!
Parker has been really into prime numbers and perfect numbers lately. Every morning he wakes up and stays in bed reading this book called You can Count on monsters. It's a book that has all the number trees from 1-100 and then illustrations of them as monsters. He loves it.
Today he asked me what all the prime numbers were from 1-1000 (he only knew 1-100, what an idiot) so I googled it, cut and pasted it and printed it. Now he is reading that paper.
He's pretty happy.
Speaking of Parker and math, the other day when he was goofing off, he did something that was so eerily similar to Peter, his mathematically similar cousin, it freaked me out. It wasn't anything special, just a way he moved and spoke. Freaky!
Sunday, March 13, 2011
On the way home from dropping off Parker at school, Miranda says,
"If you and Daddy die, how will we get to Aunt Amy's house?"
Me: "Well, I'm sure someone here could drive you there or Aunt Amy could come up to get you."
Miranda: "Could Susan or Ebba drive us there?"
Me: "Yeah, either of them could do it."
Miranda: "But how will they know where Aunt Amy's house is?"
Me: "They could look at a map."
Miranda: "Maybe we should make a map to Amy's house and give it to Ebba now so she knows where to go."
Me: "Ok, we can do that."
Saturday, March 12, 2011
Lately, everyone is saying that Miranda looks like me and Elizabeth looks like Michael. I buy the Elizabeth one since I saw a pic of Aunt Lori at a young age and it was identical to Elizabeth. But for Miranda, I tell them they obviously have never seen Amy or Oliver, the people she really looks like.
The freckles are coming on strong on all three kids now. Elizabeth still has the most, but the others are catching up. That, in case anyone is wondering, is all from the Long side of the family. Martin is off the hook on that one.
We found a perfect Piedmont rental and we find out in a day or two if they have picked us. I had all sorts of connections with the landlords (an grandparent type couple who live near by). They have twin grand kids who live in Culver City, her father was a professor at a UC, and they are good friends with someone who worked for me at the EBSPCA. I hope those all pay off!
It's a three bedroom with den and bonus large finished play room in the basement with a small attached office. We'll probably make that the guest room too for all your out of towners. It also has a fabulous backyard. Huge and full of adventures for the kids. Formal dining room but also eat in breakfast nook. Two stories, so lots of stairs for the kids to play on. Oh, and it comes with a piano ('Would you want a piano?' they asked as we toured the house.)
And the best part is that it is in lower Piedmont so we are steps away from the Oakland border meaning we get the Oakland vibe, but the Piedmont schools, which are some of the best in the state. Win-win!!!
If we get it, we'll be moving during April and putting our house on the market in May. If we don't, we'll be depressed and panicky. Cross. Your. Fingers.
I've now run 13 miles twice during the training for the half marathon I will be running in two weeks. Which is two times more than last year during the same training. I'm hoping that I am fully prepared to do it on race day.
It will be nice to have a Saturday without a long run to do.
That being said, I'm now considering a full marathon as my next challenge...god help me.
Friday, March 11, 2011
Parker had subs for 4 days this week. Last week, he had one for one day. Next week he will have one for at least one day, but probably more. His teacher has missed about 18 days of school this year. The parents in his class are pissed off, including us. Michael met with principal today who was basically worthless saying she couldn't say anything, and thanking him for bringing this to her attention (cause the massive meeting in december about it didn't give her a clue.)
Parker had a massive meltdown yesterday after school. And today, he called me at 11:30 crying. Apparently a scramble note I left him in his lunch box set him off, but really we think he is just stressed from all the subs. (Who wouldn't be? One other kid was crying before school yesterday. ) I went to pick him up and he was still crying when I got there. So sad.
Sunday, March 06, 2011
As I have mentioned, Elizabeth has been lying quite a bit lately. She has also started wearing this doll's shirt thing (I have no idea where it came from.) It's antiquey and falling apart and it's too small for her (because it is a doll's!) so it's super tight on the neck. She wears it around the house and I don't really care.
So on Friday she asks to wear it to a party at an inflatable/jumpy house place and I said no. In addition to looking ridiculous on her, it's ripped and would be dangerous in the jumpy houses because the neck is so tight. She said ok and went upstairs to change. She back down in an equally ridiculous top...a terry cloth after swim thing that she wears like a jacket. She said, is this better? I said yes and asked her how she got the other top off since the buttons were so hard to do (I usually do them for her). She said she just reached around to do it which seemed reasonable since Elizabeth can do things other kids can't.
A friend's mom picked up the girls and took them to the party. I hung out with Parker and then we both went to pick them up. When I arrived, there was Elizabeth standing there in the top. The one I told her not to wear. One of the other moms then asked me about the top saying it looked old timey and where did I get it. I was pissed. I told Elizabeth that what she did was not ok. Her response was: "But mom, it didn't hurt to jump in it." I told when we got home I would take that top away.
And I did. And threw it in the garbage.
When did my 4 year old turn 15?
Friday, March 04, 2011
Sometimes I think I jump in to referee the kids' fight too quickly. Usually, I get involved when I hear screaming and or crying. I separate them or ask what the problem is or take away whatever they were fighting about. But lately, I've noticed that if I don't go, it usually blows over on its own. Of course, from time to time, it does not and I have to go deal with it.
For example, this morning, I was in the kitchen eating my breakfast. Elizabeth and Miranda were upstairs. I hear them screaming, then Miranda crying and telling Elizabeth NO and then more yelling. And then nothing. And then they both come downstairs in princess dresses, holding hands, singing made up songs. Happy as can be.
I guess my laizzez faire (ie lazy) parenting approach pays off. Finally.
Thursday, March 03, 2011
Passing by a cemetary today in Oakland, the kids start another death discussion.
Eli: What are those statues.
Me: They are not statues, they are tombstones or gravestones. They show where people are buried.
Miranda: Dead people? Who are under the ground and dead.
Me: Yes. The stones usually say something about them and include their birthdate and date of death.
Elizabeth: Like when they die?
Parker: Like yours would say, Born November 23, 1969 and died November 23, 2069?
Me: Yes, but you know some people die when they are younger than 100. Some will die when they are older than 100. Some people even die when they are babies.
Miranda: Like real, really, real babies? For real?
Me: Yes, it's sad, but it happens.
Miranda: Do little kids die too?
Me: Yes, sometimes.
Elizabeth: Are we going to die when we are little kids?
Me: I hope not. I would be very sad.
Miranda: You would be very sad because you would have to get some new kids and that would hurt your belly when they came out.
Elizabeth: I don't want to talk about this anymore.
Parker: I do. It's cool.
Wednesday, March 02, 2011
Today, I was notified by mail that Parker has been labeled a truant for missing 3 more more days of school without a valid excuse.
Obviously, I'm thrilled.
Thrilled that the teacher didn't correctly record his absences from Hawaii or recent trip to LA, even though she was notified wayyyy in advance.
Thrilled that all of his records have now been labeled Truant.
Thrilled hat I now have to send letters to everyone and their mother to clear this up, and I'm sure it will haunt me for years.
It's just ridiculous that the kid that can teach the class himself if he wanted with the room parent mom, is labeled a truant. Jesus.
Tuesday, March 01, 2011
On the way home (past the mormom temple).
Miranda: Look Elizabeth, it's the castle. Did you see it?
Elizabeth: It's not a castle. It's a temple.
Miranda: But what is a temple?
Elizabeth: It's a place people can visit.
Miranda: Why do they want to visit it?
Elizabeth: So they can see how beautiful it is.
Miranda: Oh. It is beautiful.