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Category Archives: Renee

about the youngest

She be kickin’ that thar ball

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This day we turned a corner in terms ‘o comely wench Thang’s knife throwin’ ability. She actually played th’ game instead ‘o drawin’ in th’ dirt ‘n an’ catchin’ fuzzy thin’s that blow in th’ fall breeze. ‘o course, all ’tis came at th’ cost ‘o her bein’ separated from every lass on her team ‘n fightin’ only wit’ th’ boys. She made it a point a pair or three times to run off th’ field ‘n be tellin’ me how displeased she was wit’ th’ situation, ‘n yet she actually played th’ game instead ‘o holdin’ hands wit’ her best bucko ‘o th’ moment ‘n clotheslinin’ th’ other players.  Unfortunately none ‘o th’ grandparents were thar to witness th’ transformation, ‘n I fear they won’t believe it when we be tellin’ them.

Today is Talk Like a Pirate Day. It’s exhausting, and Jack is deriving far too much pleasure in calling me ‘wench’ at every turn. Scurvy bastard.


Soccer Stats

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This past weekend saw the first game in my young daughter’s soccer career. There is NOTHING cuter than a bunch of spazzy 4 year olds dressed for soccer. Unless they were holding kittens, or were actually kittens dressed in soccer gear.

I can haz a socker bal plz?

I can haz a socker bal plz?

The game went pretty much as you’d expect.

There was some of this...

There was some of this...


... and a little bit of this...

... and a little bit of this...


... and a lot of on-field chatter...

... and a lot of on-field chatter...


But mostly there was this:




and this:

AandO first soccer practice 8-09 198


And this:

AandO first soccer practice 8-09 199

My baby isn’t

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dscf0688So last week Renee turned four and I hate it. Not only the fourness of it, because four is typically a very rough year at Chez Rosie, but the idea that next year she will be five and then six and then married and living a few states over. Anyway, we were pretty low-key this year in terms of a party. Three of her best friends and one girl who kept staring at us from the next booth, so come on over and join us, celebrated her birthday with us at the local Chic-fil-a.  It was perfect – no grand preparations, just some good Christian food, a climber, and balloons.  I highly recommend it if you’re short on cash but want your kid to have a party. I checked it out with the manager beforehand and was assured they didn’t care as long as you bought food. They didn’t actually help, but they were happy to have us… buying food ;). Just come prepared with an extra treat bag in case some little kid won’t stop staring at you.

Anyway, back to the point. Renee is four and taller and sassier, but oh… just wonderful.  I know every parent says this, but I have never met a more social child. I’m pretty sure her spiritual mission in this world is to meet and greet everyone everywhere. We can’t go anywhere without meeting her “very good friend.” Sometimes her very good friend is 93 years old or covered in tattoos and piercings.  She is blissfully unaware of the subtle things that divide our race. I am certain she thinks she is the cosmic common thread.

She hates sitting still and does so only under durress.  The only time she is placid is when she is in the deep catches of sleep.  Otherwise she is moving, exploring, making friends, being Pajama Sam and saving the world from Darkness -sometimes attacking elephants or hugglesnorkers. Beware the hugglesnorker!!  This makes parenting her difficult – we want her to be still, to watch her sisters’ events, but there are things to do and people to be met and really, she’s four and there are bleachers! How can we possibly expect her to sit still when there are bleachers and other children?! What kind of cruel monsters are we??!!

The talking has not decreased. I don’t think it ever will. In fact, right now she is sitting on the toilet and talking to her reflection. “Hello meee! This me is poopin’. Are you poopin’ in the mirror me? I might need help wipin’- oh! Mommy’s pamamas are on the floor!” Heh, she just leaned forward too far and fell off the toilet. Annnnd she’s still talking, stepping on the scales, parrotting how important good handwashing skills are, spinning, moving, singing, washing…. It’s another thing that makes parenting her difficult. I am not proud that I’ve told her to stop talking – for five minutes. Please.  Just… stop. talking.  I’m not proud that sometimes I don’t even listen and my answers are not even well timed “mmm hmmm”, “wow!”, and “uh-huh.”

Jack is convinced she is our smartest child, and I am convinced she is too.  She makes connections that the other two didn’t (not cognitive slackers by any means) at this age. Maybe it was the progesterone pills I took daily to keep her in place – I’ve seen studies that progesterone babies have higher IQs. Maybe it’s because she has 4 people talking and moving and doing and teaching her. Maybe it’s because we are enamored with her, completely, irrevocably in love with this little girl who completed our spirits as well as our family.

Don’t do that ToyzRus! It’s not nice.

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I pretty much have Christmas ready to go. The weather can do what it likes and Santa will still make it to our home.  Each girl has an equal number of gifts to open with similar presents in each package, and until about an hour ago I was fine with and even excited about what they were getting – especially Renee.

Renee loves animatronics and is confident that Santa is bringing her S’mores the horse that cost way freakin’ too much. I really would love to buy it for her because she’s that enamored, but $250 for a toy? Are you kidding me? We don’t do that here at Chez Rosie. Sometimes though, I wish we could.  Anyway, lately I’ve been talking with her about something that’s even COOLER than S’mores!  S’mores doesn’t walk or do tricks or anything AWESOME like Lucky the Wonder Puppy! Because LUCKY THE WONDER PUPPY IS INCREDIBLE and only the best-behaved kids on Santa’s list get LUCKY THE WONDER PUPPY and wouldn’t it be AMAZING if she was one of the best-behaved kids?! I have her convinced that getting Lucky is going to be the BEST. THING. EVAH!! And then frackin’ TRU puts S’mores on sale for $99.99. Those. Fuckers.

I’ve spent the last hour calling every TRU within a 50 mile radius to see if they have S’mores in stock. While dialing, being put on hold, and hearing a recorded message ensuring me that I was indeed important to each and every one of them, I envisioned Helen’s face Christmas morning when she came downstairs to discover her Red Rider BB Gun. It would be worth the gas money and returning stupid Lucky the Wonder Puppy and that Leapster game just to see the shock and amazement and sheer joy all rolled up into one adorable little pixie face.  Lucky the Wonder Puppy is LAME!!! Screw Lucky! We were about to become proud owners of S’mores the awesome pony that doesn’t shit!  I was about to win Mom of the Year.  Good behavior for 2009 was nearly in the basket!  You know where this is going, right?

Sold out. Every. Single. Store.

It honestly took me a few minutes to calm myself down. Had I been in the store and found this awesome deal I would have been the lady who got in a fistfight. I was that enamoured with my sudden vision of Christmas Couldbe.  I’m fine now. Really.  Lucky the Wonder Puppy is INCREDIBLE!! We really didn’t need S’mores the Space-waster. Helen probably wouldn’t play with it anyway beyond Christmas morning. Really, we’re fine.

But if you happen to see S’mores (or Kota the triceratops- which I found out is being discontinued since $99.98 is a discontinued markdown price), let me know.

Sometimes being the fat penguin’s not such a bad thing

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A few months ago I watched a documentary about the horrors in Beslan. It left me in tears and I was particularly struck by the six-year old girl who escaped but then crawled right back through the window.  She survived, and when interviewed as to why she returned she said, “Because my mommy was there.”  The child’s need to be with her mother was so strong that she risked death to do it.  I understood… but I kind of didn’t.

This afternoon Renee and I were watching Madagascar. There is a throw-away scene where the animals help a baby duck back to a pond where it is promptly eaten by a gator. Tragic, but made funny by the twitch in the zebra’s eye.  Renee turned to me and asked, “Momma? Where’s that baby’s mudder?”  I told her I didn’t know. That did not sit well with her. After a few minutes’ thought and well into the next scene she turned back to me and said, “I think that gator ate the mudder first and now the mommy duck and her baby are together.”  It took a few seconds for me to understand the importance of what she had said.

For Kris Kringle night, Santa’s elves put some candy and one of those doll inside a doll inside a doll inside a doll thingies in her stocking – except the doll was actually a penguin.  Jack sat on the floor and showed a delighted Renee how it worked. He lined them up from biggest to smallest. “This is the daddy penguin,” he said pointing to the biggest and roundest. Renee disagreed. “No. That is the mommy penguin,” she corrected him. He smirked and moved on naming the penguins Mommy, Daddy, Amy, Amelia, and then finally, the smallest of allest Renee.  Again Renee disagreed. “It goes like this,” she said lining them up her way – fat mommy penguin, tiny Renee penguin, Daddy, Amy, and Amelia.  Jack tried again to be the biggest penguin, but in Renee’s head bigger is more important and I am the most important person in her world. In her head babies and mommies belong together – even if it means they both have to get eaten by a gator.

It is humbling to realize fully how essential I am.

And there was a fire grill!!!

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It’s no secret that 1 out of 3 of my children is rockin’ the neurosis here and there. She gets it from me, she said proudly.

It started at birth. The world just frightened her. As a toddler life was difficult for her. I’m not joking when I tell you that a mere clearing of the throat would send her under the table in a crying fit of fear. A sneeze was catastrophic and I’m not making this shit up. The words therapy and well… therapy were tossed around.

Preschool went surprisingly well for the first few weeks with Amy. I’d drop her off and she would wave and race off to build with her best friend of the day. And then came Meet the Fireman day and all hell broke loose. Amy flipped right the fuck out. I don’t know what she envisioned, and it wasn’t like she’d never seen a firetruck or fireman before. Her imagination must have gone wild – not unlike the time I refused to go to the beach because I thought the lifeguard was going to be green and have webbed fingers and toes. Anyway, after Meet the Fireman day Amy refused to attend pre-school. I had to sit with her in class for a week and then sit outside the classroom door for another few days before I “went to the bathroom” and only returned in time to pick her up. And don’t even get me started on how I could not be out of her sight the other 21 1/2 hours of the day.

So, with that in mind, imagine how AWESOME I felt when I picked Olivia up from pre-school the other day and Mrs. Oldlady pulled me aside and said, “We had a firedrill today and Renee freaked out.”  That. RULEZ!  She talked about it on the ride home. Imagine if you will the most dramatic three year old voice saying, “We had a fire grill today and there was fire. [there wasn’t] Coming out the grill!!! [there wasn’t] And a bell that I did not like!!! And then we went outside to be safe and the swings aren’t even built yet!!! Because we had a fire grill!!!!” And then imagine her repeating it at least 3 thousand more times before we completed the two minute drive home. And then imagine her answering the phone while I was in the bathroom and riveting the roof repairman with it while he responded with the appropriate, “Oh no!” and “That’s terrible!” and “Is your mommy there? Please?”

On and on it went and went despite my patient reiteration that fire grills are good things! They’re wasn’t a real fire, they were pretending so that they could practice being safe! And oh my goodness, yes! Fire grills can be a little scary and that fire bell isway too loud. She went to bed talking about it and she woke up talking about it and then she said, “Yeah. I’m done with preschool.” “No you’re not,” I said cheerfully, as I got her dressed. “Preschool is fun!!” “Nope,” she countered, toeing off her pink pretty princess running shoes that light up!!! as fast as I could put them on. “I all done. But thank you. I’ll stay home with you.”  I ignored her, promised her there would be no fire grill today and that they’d put the bell away, promised her a sundae from McCrappyfood, then strapped her in the van despite her vocal protests. “No, thank you,” she said over and over the closer we got to school. “I’m okay. I don’t need school.”

Pleading turned to crying and crying turned to screaming, and the screaming turned to grabbing whatever she could to keep Mrs. Oldlady from dragging her from the van. “Say goodbye to mommy, Renee,” Mrs. Oldlady grunted as she bobbed and weaved to avoid Renee’s feet. It took two women to get her out of the van. “I will miiiissssssss yyyeeeeeeewwwwwwwwww!” she called as they carried her horizontal body into the building.

I worried those few hours she was in school. Was she crying? Should I have stayed? Were these anxiety issues nature or nurture? Was she miserable? Would she start sleeping in my room again? Were my 2 1/2 hours of carefree mommy time about to come to an abrupt end?!

It turns out that no. I still get my 7 1/2 hours of recharging time. Renee greeted me this afternoon with the full report. “No grill. No fire. Chocolate cookies for snack! I’ll keep goin’ to school.”
As if it ever truly were up to her.
Maybe I should have tried chocolate cookies with Amy.

Holy crap! The bad that could have happened

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So I made Renee take her nap today and as I was on the phone I heard a thump (you know that sound) and then her crying.  I ran in to see what had happened thinking she’d fallen out of bed. I found her beneath the window in her room, with the window opened inward (we have tilt in windows) pinning her down.  That of course meant that her window proper was wide open – a gaping hole. I shudder to think what could have happened either way and feel that we got very, very, VERY lucky.