Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve Day. Always a good time.

How could it not be?


There's Uncle-Cousin Nick...

and the rest of the amazing cousin crew of Syd, Kaitlin, and Nicolle. Ned loooooooves her cousins.
There's card games...
and airplanes!

A short drive north to the other side for dinner and church. Ned is a bit of an evangelist these days; what with all of her "God made me" talk with random Starbuck's patrons. Church was high on her list of Christmas Eve excitement...elevated even higher when the pastor requested some "help" telling the Christmas story. She sat up there on stage and turned around to wave at us a good 10-15 times, sometimes "loud whispering" commentary. ("You see me? I up here hewping!")

And then there were games back at my sister's. (You know, after church on Christmas Eve you always come back and play dreidel games, right?)
And rigged Christmas bingo.
Nedy insisted on making a birthday cake for Jesus at Nana's the day before. She advised that we had to all help blow out Jesus' candles because he couldn't do it. She said, "It's like TEAMWORK for JESUS!" So Nana and Nedy made this crazy raspberry, mint chip, walnut brownie concoction and spelled out the big guy's name in white chocolate chips. Raspberry, mint chip, walnut brownies for Jesus? Really, Nana? Really?! And yes, much to Nedy's delight, we all sang a spirited 'Happy Birthday' to Jesus. (Get it? Spirited? I crack myself up.)
Nedy and her prized "fancy microphone."
Wow, this partying all day stuff is hard work.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

keeping watch

It warms my heart when Hank naps with Ned or sits on the bed keeping watch. Hard to believe this cranky, 15 year-old, long-time-only-child would decide that he actually likes her little self. That's my buddy.

"Poopy on da potty"

A while ago--like a year or so--we decided to potty train Nedy. Seemed an easy proposition. She's a scary smart, generally easy-to-reason-with rational kid. And, from a Mama's perspective, going potty on the potty just makes sense. So, I had this plan to just explain that going potty on the potty just makes sense. And then, like *viola!* she'd go potty on the potty and we'd shed our diaper ties forever (well, not forever) in the blink of an eye. Because it just makes sense.

Ahem.

So, that plan lasted about 45 minutes. And then I gave up. (And ate all of the reward-intended Jelly Bellies myself.)

See, I know how Ned works. On minor issues, there's no point pushing this gal to do something she's not interested in doing. And, putting it mildly, she
wasn't interested. So we moved on to Plan B. Plan B pretty much revolves around the concept that very few seventeen year olds are in diapers. We went all zen on potty training. As in, "When she wants to, she'll do it. In her own time, when she's ready."

Fast forward to September. Ned decided peeing in the potty seemed interesting enough to try. And pretty much from that first time forward, "pee-pees in da potty" was an every time thing. Accidents? Not so much. And Ned reported when she had to go without reminders. None of this 'take the kid to the potty chair every half hour', 'sit on the potty chair for crazy lengths of time', etc. Nope, not with Ned. She'd say, "Hey, I have to go pee-pees" followed by a beeline to the bathroom where she'd open the toilet lid, slap down her self-selected Elmo seat, and make the magic happen. It was great.

Except. Except that pee-pees and poop are not the same. And Ned fell victim to what I understand to be a common toddlerhood fear: If I let my poop fall into the toilet, who knows what else might fall out of me. Or something like that.

So. While she was "pee-pee trained", she required a diaper to poop. It went something like this: "Hey Mama, I have to poop. Can you take dis puw-up off me and put on my diapo?" Attempts to bribe her, incent her, etc.? Useless. Plan B continued for poop. All zen about poop. It'll happen when she's ready to do it... Yeah, right. Really?
"Oh my gosh, this is CRAZY!!! Why won't she just poop in the damn toilet?!?!?!" But, I hid my inner poop angst from her and rode it out, obliging her diaper requests at 7:something every morning for her predictable deposit.

But that all changed Tuesday. (Yeah, this Tuesday. Am I jinxing this?) Dan and Ned were home when she said, "Baba, I have to poop. Can you put on my diapo?" And Dan said, "I want you to
try. Just try on the toilet. And if it doesn't work, I'll put your diaper on." (Mind you, we've done this song and dance 50 times before.) As usual, she agreed to try. But this time was different. This time Baba had a stroke of genius. He left Ned sitting on the potty for "pwivacy" and grabbed his Iphone. And pulled up the Team Umizoomi theme song on YouTube. Now, Nedy digs her some Umizoomi. But she can only watch it at Grandma's once a week. No cable here at home. Well, Ned hears the song and starts yelling, "Umizoomi!!! Baba, you have Team Umizoomi on your phone?!? Can I watch it?!?" And Baba says, "This is just the song on YouTube. But, I'll make you a deal. You go poop on the potty and every time you do it, I'll download a new episode of Umizoomi." Her response? "Ooooooh, dis is GWEAT! I make poop on potty and get Umizoomi! DEAL!" And she proceeds to poop on the potty. (Followed by Baba and Nedy screaming, doing the "crazy shake" (it's an Umizoomi thing), and sending me a photo at work of her... ummm... creation...in celebration.

So she's pooped three times since that first time Tuesday. (She's a regular sort of kid. Wow, this is way too much information. I'm sorry.) And she's racked up four episodes of Umizoomi. And she's finally wearing her Hello Kitty underpants. (With tremendous pride, I might add. And tremendous cuteness. There is nothing cuter than a little butt in little undies.)


So, there you have it. I guess what I'm saying is, Ned potty-trained herself. She'd have it no other way.


Sunday, December 5, 2010

message received.

There are some bits of language that get repeated a lot at our house. You know, the important stuff. The stuff we want absolutely ingrained in the very fiber of Ned’s being.

One of those things we say again and again is, “Nedy, I love you humongous love always and forever, no matter what. Even when you’re crabby, even when you’re not listening. Always and forever. No matter what.”

So Nedy has 3 dolls: Bubbles, Baby, and (are you ready for this?) Soumakowea. Yesterday as she cradled Soumakowea in her arms she looked intently at her little plastic face and said, “Soumakowea, I yuv you hooooomungus yuv always, fowevuh, no matto what. Even when you cwabby or not yistening or make mess I yuv you always, fowevuh. No matto what. No maaaaaaato what.”

Can you sense my heart swelling?


Saturday, December 4, 2010

Nedy with a D

Oh, the things she says. Take this for instance:
"Hey Mama. Some people call me Net-t-t-t-y. Like, with a T in it. But my name is Ned-d-d-d-y, with a D. There is no T in Nedy."
So there you have it. There is no T in Nedy. ;)


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Thanksgiving weekend

Turkey Day at Grandma and Grandpa's is always a good time. Of course, most important to Ned is the presence of her cousin and personal hero, Syd. Ned loves her some Syd. :)
Our Thanksgiving celebration involves the men working the kitchen. It pretty much rocks. A new tradition emerged this year in the form of flying plastic food.
That night, Baba and Nedy made a pumpkin pie--Nedy's first from scratch crust experience. (Maybe my first from scratch crust experience will be next year. Ahem.)
Awwwww, look at those cuties and that fabulous pie.
Saturday morning we had breakfast with Holly, Pat and Zhi and then headed out to a far-away tree lot that seems to have the market on adorably pathetic little trees.
And then we came home and decorated our adorably pathetic little tree. :)
"I hewp you, Baba. I wiwwy good at putting yights on dis twee."
Yeah, Norman Rockwell's got nothin' on us. :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The return of Pum Pum

Remember this?

Nedy's adoration of The Little Drummer Boy was a near daily giggle for us most of last winter. Even after Christmas came and went, Nedy would pull up "Pum Pum" on her MP3 player (yes, it was that serious) and demand we dance with her while she sang along. I don't know what it was about that song exactly--I'm sure the "pums" had something to do with it, and the fact that it talks about "Nana's Jesus" (don't ask)--but whatever her reasons, this song just tripped her trigger.

By Spring, sadly, it seemed her obsession had subsided. She was on to the ABCs and Wheels on the Bus and such. Secretly, I missed hearing Pum Pum.

Fast forward to tonight. Every night, Baba, Nedy and I read books together and then I rock her to sleep while listening to music. (Yeah, I know she's 3. Whatever. She'll always be my baby.) So a couple minutes into our rocking she was asleep...or so I thought. And what came on the radio? Well, The Little Drummer Boy, of course. And Nedy says, eyes closed, voice soft as can be, "Mama, it's Pum Pum. I soooooo happy."

Me too, baby. Me too. :)


Sunday, November 28, 2010

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Happy Birthday, Baby!

Hello 3!

For the second year in a row, Ned's birthday defied Wisconsin weather odds and we enjoyed a 60 degree day for our now annual 5th Ward random brick wall parking lot photo shoot. I love this little tradition--heading out the morning of her birthday in search of just the right spot and spending an hour or so just capturing her (and us!) on this day.

Happy Birthday, Baby! You make my heart feel super happy.