Originally posted Dec 13, 2004
Beki visited this last weekend, to give Diane a vacation to recover from recovering from her vacation to the Philippines. Diane originally thought Beki was coming to play with her neices, so she was pleasantly surprised to find otherwise.
So, Beki came, and visited, and played, and baked, and wrapped presents, and while she was doing that, Diane got to go to confession (first time since April), and got to dress up and go to high tea with some lady friends, and, at tea, have adult conversations -- all these things without the children in tow. Diane looked amazed to be relaxed, mentioning that with two mobile kids, she didn't see that coming any time soon. Beki responded that surely in a couple of years things would ease up. That's where I chimed in: "Ah, no, not for another 18 years, at least, until they're married or consecrated, then we can take a deep breath."
Beki looked at me in shock: "Those things you just said scare me." Me: "What things? 18 years? Marriage? Consecration?" Beki: "All of them."
... so it was a good visit.
So, Elena Marie tends to become very excited, over excited, in fact, when she's having a good time, so Isabel would get knocked over, or bonked on the head with a broom (we had a moment, there, when her papa firmly scolded her for that), or have doors shut on her fingers, or bounced off of beds, or ...
Yeah, it's like insurance for the emotions raising kids: ya know it all is going to happen ... good thing I'm the solid one of the family: yeah, as solid as a rock ... on a fault-line! Yikes!
Given Elena's exuberance, Beki bought some cookie dough, so she and Elena could bake cookies together. It worked like a charm. Once Beki began cutting off strips of cookie dough and rolling them into balls for baking, Elena was hooked: "I roll it?" "I put it in the oven?" [Beki drew the line there] "Look, a snake!" she exclaimed, describing a long cylinder her little hands had just rolled.
Elena also prepared and baked a quiche with me. I got the quiche idea from Beki when I was visiting her and Howland in Vermont: so tasty, and so easy to prepare! ... and, as an added bonus, Elena likes eggs. Once she learned that the quiche was egg (Me: "Elena, do you want some quiche that you made?" EM: "noooooooh." Diane: "Elena, do you want some egg [pointing at the quiche]" EM, bouncing in her seat, "OTAY!"), she was nearly insatiable. So, there you have it. (Isabel also likes to eat rice with my special red sauce that has 'stuff' in it.)
Isabel has discovered a new joy in life: chasing her papa. She discovered it thus: Isabel was toddling off to be with her Ate, who, when she sees her, causes a huge smile to spread across her face as laugher bubbles up, unbidden, from her tiny tubby tummy (Did you notice that rhyming assonance there? Three 'y' endings in a row ... the dictionary uses 'stony and holy' as an example for assonance, but mine is better: mine has three, MW ('"Mary" and "Websteer"', http://www.m-w.com) has two; mine has alliteration, MW doesn't -- point of the story: I rock, MW doesn't). As she left me, I followed behind, just keeping her in sight. She became aware of her follower and found it amazing and entertaining that I was "chasing" her.
She doesn't always like this: sometimes when I'm following her, I see a hint of concern clouding her face, so I'm careful not to be a "scary monster", and have avoided following her much at all.
But she did turn tables and come after me at that time. As I did my U-turn and jogged, mostly in place, away from her, she thought this was the neatest thing. The second time, I jogged away a little too fast from her: when I turned the corner into the big bed room, she lost track of me, and didn't know how to look for me. Not fun for her. So, I make sure that when I'm "running" away from her "to hide" that she always has a clear view of me. Playing this game, she gets a kick out of "finding" me in my hiding place, and then chasing me across the house to the next hiding place. We're a rather slow procession, as she's still in the toddling phase, and she's slowed to a walk by the incredulous smile plastered on her face.
So, this morning, my two alarm clocks woke me at 5 am (Isabel: 'WAAAAH!' (she had a fever, but didn't want to ingest her medicine), EM: 'Mama, I sick, too!' (Elena likes doing what Isabel does: her first take on love is that being treated in the exact same way is being equally loved -- annoying sometimes for her parents, but she's only 3 years old, and many 'adults' have difficulty understanding this concept, so, in that regard, it's cool that she's experiencing this, and learning from this, now, and not 30 years from now)), so that I could ferry Beki to the airport. I also had the heart-warming experience that either Elena or Isabel called for me (sometimes it's hard to distinguish their voices) from the bedroom as I was leaving: "Papa, bapa, paba, baba!" I didn't go to them: they were on their way back to sleep, and didn't need the Papa-excitement distraction.
My heart went there, though, to my darling wife and two little girls.
So, Beki, wonderful visit, but one complaint: it was too short! *Sigh* See y'all in a couple of weeks!