Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
An empty site...
into home away from home. Kind of.
A quick walk to the lake, then back to camp for...
Dinner!! Which required a FIRE!!!
And also required A LOT of tending!!!
Time for bed! (she slept 12 straight hours!)
We slept great...all 3 of us!! this guy was under Flipper's pillow, so we practiced a little catch-and-release in the morning.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
LOOK AT ME WHEN I AM TALKING TO YOU!!! (See I told you it was a prelude to teen-agerdom!)
And speaking of teen-agers, Flipper loves them. The girls, that is. I don't think she registers that boys can even BE teen-agers. Her awe and amazement knows no bounds. My co-worker has a 17 year-old daughter that likes children, and is looking for babysitting gigs. We all met at the big Weaver Street for breakfast a few Saturdays ago so Flipper and I could meet her, chat for a few minutes, etc. I told my co-worker that Flipper would be struck dumb, unable to respond to even the most basic of questions. She didn't really believe me, but it is exactly what happened. If you have ever been near or in close contact with someone really famous, that is what Flipper felt. And, as a result, she acted like some sort of star-struck fan. Sat silently beside Katie while we ate. Flipper, of course, was too awe-struck to eat at all. Silently followed her to the bathroom. Returned, never taking her eyes off her for more than 5 or 6 seconds. It was precious. Why? Because she was silent.
The same thing happened when I took her with me to the salon to get my hair cut. Flipper was mute, again, in the face of a Real Live Grown-Up Place. My hair-person is from Quebec, and has a strong French accent. She is witty and sarcastic and I love her. Plus, she is great with hair. Flipper was silent, hovering beside my chair. Lynn, my hair-genius, was so thrilled that she maintained a monologue about Flipper's cuteness and silence for the entire 20 minutes it takes to cut my hair. It went something like this: (don't forget to add your own heavy French accent here)
Oh, you are so cute (except it sounded like "coot")
What do you eat to be so cute??
(tiny whisper from Flipper: Raisin Bran.)
Which is a total lie, she has had Raisin Bran once in her whole life!!
Oh, I need to get some! And eat some so I can be cute like you! And you, you are so QUIET!! I like you because you do not talk! I like little children that do not talk because they all talk and they drive Lynn crazy! You so cute and you so quiet, I will give you little present!! Do you want a little present? Do you? Good! Here is your little present for being SO QUIET!! (some plasticky light-up wand-thingie). Flipper handled it as though it were the Crown Jewels. Tiny whispered "thank you."
Then we left. She was silent the whole ride home, gently and lovingly fondling her plastic wand-thingie, and then it ended and she talked for about 10 straight hours to make up for the 30 minutes she was silent.
I didn't have the heart to tell Lynn that she was quiet only because we were doing something so grown up that she was awed into silence.
Her chattering really comes as no surprise, as I got in trouble in school for talking more than anything, or really, anyone else. In second grade Mrs. Hardy gave us all little cartoon Valentine's. Mine was that crazed shark, JabberJaws. Perhaps the apple is landing very very close to the tree after all.
Monday, April 21, 2008
Flipper with her face freshly-and beautifully-painted.
Flipper checks out some onstage action.
Flipper with the same long rainbow silk, attempting to become some sort of butterfly. She spent almost 30 minutes tying and retying it.
Flipper and Diana on the climbing wall. ALL the kids LOVED the wall, the cool guy that ran it gave them multiple turns for their (my) money, was really relaxed, called Flipper "cutie-pie" which I loved, just great!! Flipper would climb about 8 feet up, then let go and swing out. You can see her looking at the cool guy that was running the wall on the left. He was great.
Sound stage at dusk.
Friday, April 18, 2008
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Flipper's fantasy, come to life. She will gaze at this for hours, hours I tell you! Perhaps I should get a TV after all...
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Note: this is not my bed. I only wish, as I love the padded headboard. Friend's vacation house in Blowing Rock.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Monday, April 14, 2008
Why is this on my radar right now? Well, on Saturday evening, Flipper, my parents and I went to an excellent restaurant in downtown Durham, near the old ballpark. Durham, too, is undergoing quite the little downtown renaissance. Here is a link to the place: http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/ so you can get a look at the menu, which changes every two or three days. I could tell the waitstaff wasn't overly thrilled to have a small child there at all, but they hid it well. She ordered the beef and ricotta ravioli with the red wine and tomato sauce. It was apparently great, as she ate almost the entire plate. So then I started thinking about how we eat now as opposed to how we ate when I was young. Main difference: we never ate out. Maybe 2 or 3 times a year. This is not an exaggeration.
Once at the beach in the summer, the same place year after year, The Breezeway on Topsail Island. Someplace decent when my grandparents came to town, and that was it. Back then (the Dark Ages, aka the 70's) there were very few places TO eat out. The Triangle was pretty small, and still pretty white-bread. But I look at the options available NOW, and a piece of me still can't believe the change. Millions of great places to eat, tons of new kinds of foods. Artisan bread. Cheese NOT wrapped in pastic, slice after slice. Organic any and everything. Sushi. Pad Thai. Mexican, far far beyond crunchy Ortega shells. Fresh lots-of-stuff. Goat cheese. Mahi mahi. Tilapia. No fish sticks, ever. No more casseroles with a can of Campbell's Cream-of-Mushroom soup as a crucial ingredient. Roasted asparagus. It is amazing, is it not, the changes that food has undergone in a mere 20 or 30 years? And it will undoubtedly keep on changing as she growns up. Her palate is already more finely honed at almost 5 than mine was at 19.
Smokey, Sophie and Flipper eat lunch alfresco yesterday. Note new addition to family: huge fern purchased at roadside plant sale Saturday afternoon. I love it and now wish I had gotten two.
Friday, April 11, 2008
"Mysteria" covered gazebo
Flipper checking out large turtle.
Same one. But an even bigger, in fact, terrifyingly large snapping turtle was in the middle of the pond, cruising around, looking for baby ducks or something.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Isn't it great?? Can't you see us, snug in our sleeping bags, gazing at the stars through our mesh ceiling, discussing how nice it is to be without the dogs for a day or two...or, more likely, discussing what is really on her poor little mind these days: the shifting sands of kindergarten friendships, and death. Dying. What happens to dead people. Why they can't talk anymore. Where she will be buried. How much she will miss me. And on and on. I wish I could blame the next-to-last chapter of Charlotte's Web on our recent morbid pre-bed talks, but I think it is just her age. That, and the small cemetery that borders our afternoon walk. Such cheerful pillow talk is only interrupted by other issues bothering her these days, that of friendship. For most of the year, she has played exclusively with one little girl. They adore each other, and play together for hours, just the two of them. But in the fall, that little girl will be moving on to first grade, and Flipper will not. I predicted that this would cause issues, and it has. The other girl is starting to play with the older girls, the other 6 year olds. Brief explanation: Waldorf kindergarten is multi-age, from young four year olds to six year olds. At her school, students cannot move on to first grade until they are 6 by June 1. Flipper, who will turn 5 on May 25, is one of the young ones. And so it is happening, the other little girl is trying to establish friendships with her peer group, the other rising first graders, and Flipper is being, at times, left out. Two nights ago she cried and cried about it, after telling us that she didn't want to go to school. So I wormed it out her, her hurt feelings, her disappointment, how hard it was to play with others when she really just wants things to go back to how they were a few months ago. Poor Flipper! But this is part of growing up, of life. Recently I have been reading a lot about fear-based parenting, about our desire to shield our children from ALL of life's bumps and bruises, and how, in the end, this doesn't help them grow inside, or develop coping skills. My mothering instinct is to call the other mom, arrange a playdate, do SOMETHING so she can be with her friend again. So I stay out of it, encourage Flipper to play with some of the other kids, remind her that you can't make someone play with you. But it is hard. On a lighter note, I have been encouraging her to set out clothes for the next day before bedtime. I think it backfired a bit, and unleashed a touch of the obsessive-compulsive that lurks within. See below.
Note the shoes, already tied. The reality of having to UN-tie them just to put them ON in the morning seems to not have occurred to her. Note the socks, with her pants legs stuffed into them, scarecrow-style. Where does she get this? And why?
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
I just cannot get over how porcine that drawing is, nor can I get over the frightful chandelier earrings dangling from the side of "my" head. Me, who wears only a small necklace and nothing else, in fact, I don't even OWN anything else. Or the smaller ones on HER head, she who ALSO owns almost no jelwely,and cannot get her ears pierced until she is 13? Moving on...note that her letters show a terrifying inclination towards some sort of cheerleader-ish, Tri-Delt kind of writing, what with the little circles on the ends of the letters. How does a four year old DO this?? And, perhaps more importantly, why???
What my co-worker snuck into my office and left on my computer yesterday. Yes, it IS real...and it was wet. Did I mention that I work with all guys?