Thursday, January 31, 2008

NO ONE CAN SAY WE DIDN'T GET OUR MONEY'S WORTH OUT OF OUR...

Christmas tree!

The formerly festive, now-forlorn fatty:

Thankfully, spontaneous combustion is a rarity. (The happiest person to see this thing gone, by the way, may well be the woman who cleans--and vacuums--our house.)

Yes, The Wog and I just managed to take it down today, but I had an excuse--good or not I'll leave to you, reader--for taking my time. (And besides, we've been enjoying it. In fact, I briefly considered hanging on until Valentine's Day, pink as our tree is.) Several weeks ago, I scoured the web for a packing system in which to safely and efficiently store our ornaments which would not require wrapping and unwrapping every single item. Everything I found was either backordered or out-of stock. (So I still wasn't exactly early in this task, but I wasn't late, either.) I finally found an online shop that listed the containers I wanted as available, so I ordered them to be delivered via 2-day air because while I may not be the model of domestic precipitance, when I'm ready to get down to it, I'm ready to get down to it. And then I waited for them to arrive. And waited. The weekend came and went. I contacted the store the following Monday, and was informed that the items were backordered and not expected until earlier this week. More weekends came and went while I dug in, refusing to take down the ornaments without my new storage system. And then voila: they arrived yesterday! Merry Christmas to me!

It was totally worth the wait, as all of our ornaments and 95% of our holiday decor--including lights, tree topper, and various other decorations--are now happily tucked away awaiting next year. Or, as The Wog says, "When I am four." And come that time, if anyone hears me say we need more ornaments, remind me to take a look at these:



A close-up cross-section (these are four-deep and completely full):


Taking down the tree is a task I wish on no one, but we had our fun:

("Uncle Doodle wants YOU, sparkly pink tree topper!")


If it's not immediately apparent, The Wog took the task of holding our tree topper on her head VERY seriously.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

A WOG ON A LOG

School was canceled today because of the weather (rain, but weather all the same) but we managed to fill up the day with fun activities--the Children's Museum, followed by lunch with her two best girlfriend, and wrapping up with dance class. This picture was taken via a friend's camera phone at the "nestaurant." The Wog loves to count her "best friends" on her fingers. She has exactly two (best friends, not fingers). Here they are in action (again, the friends, not the fingers):



During dance class, the children sat in a circle and talked about career aspirations (which they later danced; apparently all doctors do is strut around carrying clipboards; who knew?). There were hopeful teachers, stuntmen, "animal doctors," "people doctors," and ballerinas in the class. The Wog was inexplicably silent. When the instructor explained that it is possible to have multiple jobs in life (for example, she is a mother, teacher and dancer), The Wog's tiny little voice--obviously she'd been wrestling with a difficult decision--piped right up: "I'm going to be Cinderella AND Ariel."

Sunday, January 27, 2008

DOROTHY WOGGIL

I was a little worried when we headed for our first foray into ice skating that The Wog would not enjoy herself. But I should have known better. She hit the ground running (or the ice skating, as the case may be) with her typical fearless aplomb. Luckily, she has a great (and patient!) skater of a Daddy to help her on her way!

Donning her skates for the very first time:


Check out the bling on The Wog's left hand:


She was quite proud of herself:


On their way:



The Wog insisted on trying to push the crates by herself:



A cozy Doodle prepares to hit the rink:


He and I observed:



The Wog in action:
video

(I taped the U.S. figure skating championships on television last night--AKA "The skating princesses," accoring to The Wog, and she has been watching them ever since...they've surpassed Lawrence Welk as The Wog's favorite reality television program!)

Non-skating love from Daddy:

Saturday, January 26, 2008

THE DOODLE AT PLAY

Anyone who knows The Doodle knows that he does not like to sit. He likes to stand (assisted, of course) and would remain in that position all day if he had his way. When we attempt to force him to sit, he will arch his back over and over and over again until we give in and let him stand. Here he is enjoying himself in a rare, seated moment:

video

(This video also demonstrates his James Brown imitation.)

Friday, January 25, 2008

CHEEK TO CHEEK

Cheeky:



Alone:



Together:



(People are always commenting that West is so much fairer than Polly, but I think these pictures may prove otherwise. She's dark of hair and eye, but his skin is more olive than hers...at least in these pictures.)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

WHAT WE'RE UP TO THESE DAYS

A ham and his hamlets:

(The bathrobe, a gift from Minnie and Pop-Pop, has become The Wog's father's absolute favorite wardrobe item.)

Never come between a girl and her Chapstick.(She says, "But I need it to be a Princess!" And who can refuse--particularly when it was prescribed by her doctor!)




The windows of his soul:



Wednesday, January 23, 2008

IN WHICH THE WOG MAKES A REQUEST

The Wog attended her first kids-only birthday party over the weekend at the home a sweet little 4-year-old, Abby, from her Preschool Music Class. We were a bit concerned about how she'd go it alone, but she came home happy, seemingly unfazed, and stocked beyond her wildest dreams with Dora lollipops, various princess paraphernalia, and (navy blue?!?) lip gloss (the residue of which, incidentally, still shadows her upper lip despite multiple baths).

Earlier today I told her that we were going to see Abby again tomorrow at class; she seemed excited and then earnestly asked, "Mommy, will you come with me to Abby's house?" My mind immediately jumped to the panicked conclusion that we'd abandoned her--lonely and unhappy--at the home of virtual strangers. I attempted to maintain my calm as I pressed her about why she wanted me to come along, and her response instantly put my mind at ease: "Because I can't drive!"

Monday, January 21, 2008

THE WORLD'S BIGGEST MOUND OF SNOW

We had an impromptu visit this weekend from Grandma and Grandpa. Grandpa helped The Wog and her father dig our driveway....still not completely undug from before Christmas! It just keeps coming, and then it turns to ice, and then even the plow gets nowhere.

Atop the pile:



Driveway sledding:




This portion of the driveway was a sheet if ice, and The Wog picked up some serious speed:


Ready for another go:


An unnatural habitat:


Meanwhile, The Doodle hung out with Grandma:

PURE, UNADULTERATED DOODLE













(These photos were taken just after The Doodle's very first hair combing.)

Saturday, January 19, 2008

PRINCESS JASWOG

The Wog's father's company had some business in Dubai last week, and a colleague (parent to a grownup daughter--so has been through and survived The Pretty Pretty Pink Princess Phase) brought The Wog home a sparkly pink princess camel, which she has not declutched since receiving. It happened to perfectly coordinate with what she was already wearing, including the adorable hat and scarf knitted by Grandma! We call it "camel-flage."

Friday, January 18, 2008

HE FEELS NICE (DOODLE DOODLE DOODLE DO), LIKE SUGAR AND SPICE

The Doodle was on and off sick for the past week, and when The Doodle is miserable, not many pictures get taken! He's back to his happy little self these days, so we're getting ourselves back on track and online.

Two stories from the past week:

1.) Since The Doodle's birth, I have been surprised at The Wog's ability to feel compassion and empathy for her brother. I've been warned that it is likely to change when The Doodle is old enough to lay hands on her toys, but until then I will continue to feel proud and amazed by this thoughtful, kind and generous big sister. The other day I was showering while The Doodle was in his Bumbo, and The Wog was playing alongside him. I heard a thud and then The Wog exclaimed, "Ouch!" in a loud, pained voice. When I quickly looked out to make sure she was okay, she was calmly sitting there, rubbing the back of The Doodle's head. When I asked what happened, she sadly explained that he'd bumped into the wall.

2.)The Doodle expresses extreme happiness in sharp short screeches that his father and I liken to the cry of an angry velociraptor. (Think Jurassic Park.) We were in the waiting area during The Wog's dance class earlier this week and The Doodle was in his favorite standing-while-holding-my-hands position (it is next to impossible to get this child to just sit down); he was completely delighted by himself and expressing it in loud, gleeful shrieks. After about the fifth eardrum-shattering scream, a waiting grandmother--with whom I'd never previously shared a word--wryly declared, "He sounds like James Brown." He kind of does. And he feels good!

While I've been remiss in my picture-taken, their father has (somewhat) taken up slack with his iphone:

The Wog on the seesaw:


Balancing the other end of the seesaw is The Wog's best friend, Lily. They are a good balance in many ways:


Snow, just this very morning: