Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Tea Parties, Playdates and Picasso

This morning, Madeline, Monkey and I had a tea party using an adorable set that Ning gave us (featuring the character Madeline and her dog, Genevieve). Madeline was a lovely hostess, helping feed Monkey clementine slices and refilling the thimble size tea cups with orange juice (which I wiped up as they overflowed, trying not to interfere...). Then our neighbor Amy came over for a grown up tea party! We had a fun lunch, ending with brownie cheesecake and homemade cookies that Amy treated us to.

Madeline is so busy learning (and I do mean busy). Yesterday, I watched her pull a box of cereal from the counter, get a bowl out of her drawer, and then pour herself a bowl of cereal at her little table. I observed silently and proudly, making a mental note to call Rob at the office to tell him how grown up she is. Then seconds later, I heard giggling and shrieks of laughter from the dining room. "I pour cereal on Maple's head...!" And sure enough, the bowl was at Maple's feet and the dog was covered in a fine cereal dust (the stuff that filters to the bottom of the box). Even her eyelashes were coated. I'm sure she was wondering what she did right, as she wildly licked her forearms and attacked the carpet like someone had just tossed her a steak. I had to hide in the kitchen for a good 20 seconds before I could stop laughing to explain that we don't pour food on the dog. Then this morning, I heard another proud exclamation. "I color on wall!!" Oh boy. Deep breath. I rounded the corner again, and our freshly painted dining room wall was "decorated" with red marker. A lot of it too. Thank goodness for Crayola washable markers. I explained that we only color on paper and handed Madeline a wet rag to help me wipe it up (something I read in a parenting magazine....never knew those tips would come in handy quite so soon). It's exciting to watch her learn and too bad we have to stifle that fun. Think about how fantastic it would be to color on the walls whenever we felt like it!

We had a fun play date with Madeline's good friend Jackson earlier this week. I was amazed how they happily played together like an old married couple. Then we had a breakthrough with Mother's Day Out. After the first drop off three weeks ago, the good-byes have gotten progressively more difficult on Madeline. While she adjusts quickly, there have been steady and increasing tears -- each Tuesday and Thursday, I listen to her reassure herself in a sad, weepy voice, "Mommy always come right back. Mommy always come right back." And then at the moment I turn to leave, she howls and the floodgates open. Yesterday was different. I set her down and watched her take off into the classroom, but only after closing the safety gate behind her, pecking me on the lips and giving me a high five. She never looked back once! When I picked her up at noon, I heard on repeat "Fun with the kids!"


The Stucks said...

That is exactly what Lauren used to say when I dropped her off at preschool...Mommys always come back!We have such sweet girls!

Johanna said...

What sweet stories! I think I would DIE if I heard her say, "Mommy alwasy come right back." Love that she dumped the cereal on Maple and colored on the walls. You handeled it MUCH better than I would have. :)