Sunday, July 15, 2012

Letter to Lucia: 33 Months

Dear Little One,

It’s been a big month for you. This month, we said goodbye to everything you knew: your home, your room, your playground, the familiar streets where we walked, the shop windows you knew by heart. Here, everything is different: you have different-colored walls in your room; you have a new carpet; you have new rooms in which to play. There’s a different playground—we haven’t quite found our ideal match yet—and different rhythms to our days. It’s a lot for me to handle—I can only imagine how confusing it is for you. You’re handling it very well overall.

Some new things, you love: the duck pond, the pool we joined, painting rocks on the porch. Some new things, I thought you’d love, but you’re taking your time coming around to: the backyard, mainly. It’s currently shaded by a cloud of mosquitoes, so I don’t blame you for keeping your distance. I’ve bought a sprinkler and a sandbox—all yet to be set up—so I’m hoping we’ll venture there a little more often.

You love to sing. Every time you spend a few days with Grandma, you come away with a new song or two; this time, “Where Is Thumbkin?” really made an impression, and in quiet moments (or when you’re supposed to be napping), I hear you singing multiple verses—Thumbkin, Pointer, and Ring Man.

You like doing a five-minute countdown to bring activities to an end, and you’re trying to arrange your fingers into five, four, three, two, one, and zero. You generally accept that reaching “zero minutes” means it’s time to leave or stop or whatever. However, you don’t seem to get the idea of counting one, two, three to make you stop misbehaving. Instead, at each of my counts, you simply do the forbidden action: “One…” [hit Greta’s saucer.] “Two…” [hit it again.] “Three.” [hit it again and then yell “I don’t want a time-out!”] Definitely some work to be done on the discipline style.

You like caring for Greta. In the car, if she starts fussing or crying, you sing the ABCs at the top of your lungs, certain that this makes her happy (and sometimes it does, indeed, make her stop crying; other times I just have one hysterical child and one scream-singing child). You like to wash Greta in the bathtub, though this sometimes seems like you’ve just found a sneaky way to be allowed to pour water over Greta’s head. And you love to feed Greta—a messy, awkward process, so I limit it to one or two spoonfuls. Of course, you also have your moments of snatching toys out of her hands or refusing to share or demanding that she not chew on things. “Lucia,” I sometimes say when she’s getting upset that Greta is touching a book or toy, “it’s okay for her to hold that.” “She can hold it,” you relent, “but not chew on it.”

You are amused by Greta’s crawling. “Look,” you tell me sometimes when Greta starts crawling somewhere. “Look, look. She’s crawling!”

You are full of personality and drama these days. There is never a dull moment.

Favorite activities/toys: Little People, sorting, stretchy vibrating alien, tiny superballs, ice-cream-cone bubbles, blowing bubbles in general, Sit-and-Spin, painting rocks, throwing your Hello Kitties high into the air in the backyard

Favorite books: The Patterson Puppies and the Rainy Day, The Patterson Puppies and the Midnight Monster Party, Geraldine the Music Mouse, Where the Wild Things Are, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (can’t we please get over this book??), In My Tree, Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse, A Baby Sister for Frances, Best Friends for Frances

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