November 18, 2008

What did she say, Mama?

Me: Fork. She said "fork", Arun.

Only, except that she did not say "fork" and someone around here needs to clean up her act. And soon.

Oh, and speaking of speaking toddlers, let me say this: the ability of a toddler to speak well does not stave off tantrums. Oh No, It Does Not. I had often heard that one reason toddlers throw tantrums, is that they have difficulty communicating and this leads to frustration and this leads to tantrums. Um, no. What happens when your toddler can speak clearly and decisively is that she proceeds to get super annoyed with you because damn it, woman! Did you not hear her clearly shriek "want" and "puppy" as you dragged her howling through the toy store? Hell's bells, she even jabbed her pointer finger in the direction of said puppy, you moron. Speaking clearly only serves to frustrate her even more because she knows that you know very damned well exactly and precisely what She Wants Right Now.

So, yes. It appears I am going to finally get a normal toddler. One who has no patience and throws tantrums. Even though Arun was a late talker, his temperament was such that he could usually be distracted or comforted before anything escalated into a Category 5 status. Anjali? Is a different sort of beast. I would lying if I did not admit that we are fairly tickled with her attitude, though. I never wanted a shrinking violet for a daughter but then again, you know what they say about being cautious during your wishing process. *gulp*

In other news, I had a weird mental freakout this weekend and am embarrassed that Jodifur got to hear about it. Sorry about that. Yikes.

This economy crunch has not really hit us directly (yet?!?), but I am very worried for some folks that I love dearly. I am also very conscious of what we have and how fortunate we are. I have bagged up two sacks of food to donate to a local food pantry and will drop it off today. I am also pondering what to do for the holidays. I want to do something that will get Arun directly involved, even if it is just picking out something he can give to Toys for Tots. I am also going to make a habit of having some quarters and dollar bills available for him to give to the red kettles we will be encountering.

I do worry about my kids being appreciative of what they have. I do not think it is a bad thing to have material possessions, but I do want them to be respectful of it. By virtue of our backgrounds (middle class ourselves, but having classmates and friends who were very poor) , X and I are distinctly aware of how good we have it.

Fortunately, my family really tones down the holidays - we focus on the lights, the tree, the music, the food and just being together. We have cut out much of the gift-giving and instead, are mostly drawing names now. My gift list for this year is a grand total of 11 people, which does not seem too bad. And that includes Arun's school and such. I am so grateful that we are low-key for the holidays. Sure, gifts are gooeylicious fun (hello!) but my favorite memories are not from the ripping of packages. I do want the same for my own kids.


Anonymous said...

Hee... that first bit reminds me of a time my cousins and I were having spelling contests (I'm guessing we were 5-7 years old at the time). My cousin spelled "Shirt" wrong... I bet you can guess which letter he left out. My other cousin and I decided to make fun of him by chanting the word he did spell, only neither of us knew it was a word at all... until our parents ran out of the porch and told us we had to stop saying it.

I think I mentioned it last year, but I really wish my family was the same way with gifts and just did the drawing names thing instead of individual presents.

MB said...

I always find myself saying, "I know what you want, you just CANT HAVE IT."

Sign language doesn't reduce tantrums either. Well, maybe some, but Marielle can tell or sign to me everything she might need or want. Instead she chooses to just scream her head off most of the time. Ah, toddlers.

meno said...

I just had to laugh at this. I (i have a dreadful temper, and i am ashamed about that) told my child to "fuck off" when she was 4 or 5.

She looked at me and quite sincerely asked "what does 'fuck off' mean mommy."

Now you know what a sucky mom i am, but she turned out okay.

Anonymous said...

I really think it is all a balance, sure my kids have toys, plastic ones (oh the horror) but if I dictated all the toys in our home then it would really make all the toys mine and not them.

My kids like to make there own toys to and they intermix their plastic (demon toys) with their wood toys and mud, sand, dirt, earwax. The usual.

And they're kids. And they make a mess and it's overwhelming sometimes and i try to pare it down to the essentials but then i think ehhh. I'm going to focus on teaching them to respect the earth and each other and they can do that while playing with storebought toys just as well as wooden organic toys.

I'm not sure I had a point except.
lights! trees! can't wait.

jodifur said...

Um, I have no idea what you are talking about, so don't worry about it.

Anonymous said...

Loving the toned down holidays. We normally are very toned down, but this year are seeing family from abroad for the first time in many years, so things will be extra ramped up for that occasion!

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

All I want for Christmas are my two front teeth! And, uh, a wide angle converter for my new camera.

MichelleB said...

Me and my hubby are mindful of what we spend on the holidays and for our son. We buy gifts we feel are timeless and will last a long time.

So since my son and hubby bought me a gorgeous pair of diamond earrings from for my birthday recently, I will give them both gift certificates to the sports store they love.

Anonymous said...

Oh yea, they tantrum because they can, and mine do it often and they can speak perfectly fine...

Anonymous said...

Paul's been out of town. For a while.

And now Max is calling it the "damn stroller." As in, 'get in the damn stroller already.' I managed to avoid telling to get his ass in the damn stroller, so I think I'm a total winner mom.

Mojavi said...

yeah Kya calls MO and Sara "damn dogs" lol oh well...

ALso I think I told you this already but we volunteer as a family every year to ring the bell. Before Kya was born we volunteered every friday befroe christmas in december. Now we just do it the friday before. This year I Am going to ring with Kya for an hour

Antropóloga said...

You're so right. She gets more angry now because she TOLD me what she wants and I am STILL neglecting to satisfy her. She does feel better when I repeat what she said and say, "But Mommy says no." Not a lot better, though.

Anonymous said...

It's amazing how your post echoes mine about Holiday giving.

I love how you wrote about your toddler WANTING it now, woman, what's wrong with you!?

My daughter was an easy toddler to please but I find that my son, when he wants something badly, forgets all about the sign language and resorts to good ol' fashioned whining and screaming. They are smart little buggers aren't they!?

Happy Holidays! I hope you can find a way to "give to someone else" with your kids.

I don't mind if you respond by leaving comments on my blog... instead of e-mailing me *smirk*

Zip n Tizzy said...

My oldest is a child of few words, unruffled and few tantrums. My youngest speaks quite well, throws wicked tantrums, and has the words to negotiate and try try again. We are as amused and pleased with his fiery energy, as we are with his brothers carefree energy, we just know he's going to get challenged more for it if he doesn't learn to cool his heels, poor guy.

We also do name draws. Our family doesn't get too hung up on the gift aspect of Christmas, which I feel very grateful for. We just try and spend more time together and do special crafts etc. with the kids. Really helps alleviate the stress doesn't it?

Sounds like you have a lot to be Thankful for and really understand and appreciate your blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving!