May 2009

Monthly Archive

how to ask for a treat

Posted by lynn on 16 May 2009 | Tagged as: melina

Eyeing the Pumpkin

Taking a Seat

On Mother’s Day we visited Children’s Fairyland in Oakland. Melina had fun riding the pint-sized train, looking at furry animals (including an alpaca!) and running down Alice’s rabbit hole. Then she spotted a great big pumpkin that was obviously a place where grown-ups could buy treats.

I Know You See Me. I'm Waiting...

I'm Waiting Very Patiently

She stood staring at it from a distance for a good five minutes, probably scoping out the hot chocolates and cookies coming through its big window. As soon as the little barstools at the window cleared out, she walked up, moved the pink stool to the center, climbed on, and patiently waited for at least another five minutes. Through all this, she didn’t say a single word.

Daddy Bought Me a Treat :)


Joey and I thought it was so ridiculously cute that he stood in line to buy Melina a chocolate biscotti. The little girl got exactly what she wanted and we got a good laugh (and lots of pictures). Manipulative? Perhaps. And a stark contrast to how Kai probably would have demanded a treat (and in the process blown his chances of getting one) in the same situation.

mamahood essay published!

Posted by lynn on 10 May 2009 | Tagged as: kai, writing

This Mother’s Day I had a special essay published in the online magazine Literary Mama.

I invite you to read my piece, called “Stepping Into Mamahood.” If the title isn’t hint enough, it’s about Kai and me. And it will give you an insight into one mama’s perspective on stepparenthood.

Happy Mother’s Day to mamas and mama figures everywhere!

“happy to you…. happy connor”

Posted by lynn on 06 May 2009 | Tagged as: friends, melina

Birthday season is in full swing at our house: We’ve been to two parties in as many weeks and have several more lined up before Meli’s own at the end of the month. Between the parties and a music together class where we also sing “happy birthday” on a near-weekly basis, Melina has the words (almost) down!

Here she wishes buddy Connor, who turned two yesterday, a very happy birthday.

one month countdown to two…

Posted by lynn on 01 May 2009 | Tagged as: kai, melina

At Big Two minus one month, Melina is all tenacity and resourcefulness, and most always with a smile.

All Grown Up (but still no eye teeth!)

Pigtails from Daycare

Her favorite tool these days is the stool she and Kai use to brush their teeth and help us cook. At age two Kai was always content to leave it at that. Not Meli. She’ll move it to any spot where she needs a bit more height: A kitchen or bathroom drawer, our bed, a bar stool en route to the counter, and most recently, our dresser. Daddy puts the stool in “time outs” periodically (usually when he’s tired of re-directing Melina – he simply puts the stool out of her reach and sight). The other day he took it away as she tried to climb to our dresser. She didn’t even blink, but immediately grabbed her toy shopping car, laid it on its side, on started to climb. Only when daddy took that away too did she scream.

Summer Hat

Brother Hug

She can (and does) open the front door pretty easily, so we always latch the chain when she’s home. If we forget, she reminds us, which always makes me laugh. She’s also figured out how to work the baby locks on our bathroom drawers. She’s been able to open those by yanking for a while (so we don’t keep anything un-baby-safe in them) but she now understands to push and hold the plastic lever down to close. I fear it won’t be long before she’s able to open the real off-limits cabinets, too.

Test Ride

Bike Seat Smile

Melina’s been enjoying her wooden puzzles, one with animals, one with shapes, and one with numbers, this past month. She methodically picks up one piece at a time, either says or asks for its name, then positions it back into its spot. Once she’s finished all the pieces she moves onto the next puzzle. She also enjoys packing her own lunch containers into her lunch bags (yes, she eats so much she has two), and loves toting around all sorts of treasures in a purse from Auntie Stacie or in newly-discovered clothing pockets… so much that she now won’t wear any hoodie sweater that doesn’t have pockets.

Egg Hunt @ Grandma & Grandpa's

Egg Hunt with Cousins

We finally bought a tot bike seat for the back of my bike. Meli loves it! In fact, she was so excited about the idea of the seat, that before we had a chance to install it she was trying to climb into it as it lay on the floor. Since it doesn’t stand upright on its own, she ended up pinned under it, crying out “stuck, Mama, stuck!” before we knew what she was up to. She wasn’t too keen on wearing her helmet until she experienced the fun of riding the bike. Now whenever she sees it she asks “bike, bike!” I love it too: The other day as I rode her home from a play group she told me knock knock jokes the entire ride: “Knot knot.” “Who’s there?” “Mama.” “Mama who?” “Mamadada.”

Counting Eggs

I Still Clasp My Hands

Melina is fascinated with busses. Maisy drives a bus in one of her books, and when she wakes up in time, Melina also gets to accompany Kai to his school bus stop on the corner. Every time we pass a bus in the car she yells out “Mama, see, bus!” Downtown Berkeley is especially exciting because she gets to see up to five at once. The other day we passed by a stopped bus picking up passengers and she started tugging at me to go “Up, up bus!” She loves playing “The Wheels on the Bus” song on the CD player in her room, and now knows how to climb on Kai’s bed and push the start button on the CD player all by herself.

Deck Stairs

Backyard (Mama thinks I look like Auntie Stacie here)

Melina still loves animals, especially cats and dogs. She’ll pull Thor’s brush out of its drawer and bring it to him, as if he could brush himself. (Wouldn’t that be nice?) The other day she tried to point out a cat she saw in a window. “What color is it?” I asked. “Blue.” For Melina (and apparently most her almost-two friends) everything is the color blue. I wonder why blue?

She still adores her brother to no end. As soon as we arrive at his school in the afternoons she yells “Brobro Kai! Brobro Kai!” long before he’s anywhere in sight. Sometimes at night she, more a night person than Kai, will try to rile him into staying awake from her crib by yelling the same thing. Once in bed, he ignores her. But he adores her right back at all other times. He visibly relishes the role of big brother. The other day in the car, completely out of the blue, he told us: “I’d like to have another little sister.”

Finally, a funny video of Meli and Kai, all tongues, at the dinner table.