Thursday, August 12, 2010

Playing With Language

Celeste and Quinn have a new game where they take apart a word and look at the different phonemes/components.

During lunch today, Quinn started with zinnia: "If it didn't have /ə/ it would be zinny; if that didn't have /i/ it would be zin; if it didn’t have /zɪn/ it would be nothing!"

Then Celeste moved on to sunshine: "If it didn't have /sʌn/, it would be shine; if it didn't have /ʃaɪn/, it would be sun."

Then Quinn tried grass: "If it didn't have /gr/ it would be ass. Daddy, why are you laughing?"

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Give Me a ג

So Celeste found a book about Channukah in the free book pile at the pool and has been reading through it. This morning she was reading it during breakfast, so entranced by the story of the Maccabees that she couldn't eat her toast. Plus it irritated Quinlan that Celeste wouldn't let her look at the pictures.

I took the book and read to the both of them while they ate, and when it got to the end and a discussion of the dreidel game, Celeste really wanted to make one and play. Back in December, I had picked up a four pack of tiny dreydlekh at CVS as distraction for the girls, so we broke them out and they took a few practice spins before having to brush their teeth and get ready for camp.

Fast forward to tonight. It's rainy and the girls are a little stir-crazy. I get home and Celeste and Quinn want to play dreidel. The three of us get some pennies and go through a few spins. At first there are a few נ and a ש or two, then Celeste and I both spin a few ג in a row. Quinn, who's mostly ended up with נ or ש is starting to get frustrated and then she shouts: "I gotta get a gimel!" Two spins later she did ... and then started getting bored ...

Monday, June 07, 2010

Keeping Secrets

Every night, Quinn has one bedtime request: "Daddy, don't tell Mumma that you read to me." (If Evelin does the reading, the request is the same, "Don't tell Daddy that you read to me.") A little bit later, usually when the didn't-do-the-reading-tonight parent goes into her room to remind her that she's supposed to be falling asleep, she announces: "Uhm, Mumma/Daddy? Daddy/Mumma didn't read to me tonight. Can you read me three stories?"

Usually she's tried to play cute and convince us that no reading has occurred. "No, really, he/she didn't." And she gets a little upset, or sometimes giggly, when we remind her that we know the other parent has already read to her.

Tonight, when I told her that I knew Mumma had already read to her because she had told me, Quinn, dropped to her bed and sobbed: "Why do you guys always talk about that!"

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Gender-Specific Magazine Blurbs

Celeste: "Daddy? What does 'sexy' mean?"

Me: "Uhm, it's kind of the same as attractive."

Celeste: "Daddy? What does 'gut' mean?"

Me: (Starting to look around at the magazines in the check-out lane to figure out where this is coming from) "Uhm, it's the same as a tummy."

Celeste: "Why do women have tummies and men have guts?"

Me: "What?"

Celeste: "Men's Health says 'Loose Your Gut', but Women's Health 'Sexy Tummy Today'. Why do men want to loose their tummies?"

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

We're Going to Need Bail Money

After dinner last night, Quinn runs excitedly into the kitchen where Evelin and I were cleaning up and Celeste was putting away her dinner dishes:
Q: "Celeste! Celeste! Celeste! Do you want to do something fun? So fun? We could go to jail!"

C: "Okay!"
And they both run out of the room.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Really Good Book ... Apparently

I have to wake Celeste up each school morning at 6:30 a.m., so we do try to get her to bed at a decent hour. Usually, she’s in bed during the 7:00 p.m. hour and will read for a little while. Usually she’s asleep by a little past 8:00 p.m., but some times she stays up later.

Tonight, at about 8:45 p.m. Evelin thought she’d heard a noise from Celeste’s room, so I went up to check on her. I figured she’d be out cold, and I planned to make some comments to try to get Evelin to think that Celeste was still up.

Joke’s on me. At almost 9:00 p.m., Celeste was totally engrossed in The Ordinary Princess. I leaned over her to tell her it was time to go to sleep, and she didn’t respond at all ... although I could see her eyes flitting across the page. It took a few more times of me reminding her it was time to go to sleep before she finally spoke.

“I’m going to finish this book.”

I told her that if she woke up early, she could read in the morning, but she really wanted to finish tonight.

I told her she had 10 minutes then I would come back and turn out the light. Flash forward to a little past 9:00 p.m., I go upstairs and she has turned out her light and put the book down. Turns out she didn’t finish the book (which is good; she would’ve had to skim 50 pages or so, and she needs to work on slowing down and boosting comprehension), but she’s planning to finish it tomorrow ... either in the morning or afternoon or bedtime.

I asked her if it was a good book. “It’s turning out to be very good,” she said.

I told her she could bring the book to school for DEAR — drop everything and read — Time ... and that’s what she’s planning to do.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Easter Wisdom

Quinn (as she's working through a pile of jellybeans): "My stomach feels like ill, but I'm not ill."

Friday, March 26, 2010

It Must Be the Hair ...

I've found, upon occasion, when the girls are getting crazy in the car, the radio applied at sufficiently loud volume tends to smooth things over — especially 105.9 The Edge or Jack-FM.

This morning, on the way to Quinn's school, one of the stations was playing Tom Petty's "You Got Lucky". Quinn asked who the singer was, I said "Tom Petty."

Celeste started riffing on his name: "Tom Puppy," "Tom Perry," "Tom Reddy," ...

Quinn then piped up, "Oh, I thought it was Jesus."

I asked why she thought that, and she replied, "Because he's singing with a strong voice."

Celeste then starting talking about "Tom Spaghetti."

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Hidden Dangers of Folding Laundry

And, once again, I'm kicking myself for not having a video camera on these kids 24/7 so that at least some college funding could be secured from America's Funniest Home Videos.

ice pack on forehead

Yes. Despite the smile, that is an icepack on Quinlan's forehead. But that's getting a few minutes ahead of the story.

Celeste and Quinn were running around, avoiding cleaning things up, while Evelin put together their dinners (the girls were getting a different meal than us because the borinqueño dish I was making was started way too late to be part of their dinner). While things were cooking, I was folding some laundry. As I started folding a sheet, Quinn ran by and through it, like a bull chasing a matador's capote.

Of course, this was great fun and Quinn made several more passes before Celeste realized the fun and started running through, too. All was going well until the girls ended up on opposite sides of the sheet/capote ... and tried to run though it simultaneously ... conking heads quite spectacularly. I did my best to stifle a laugh as I consoled my two sobbing girls (I know, father of the year) with growing knots on their foreheads.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Celeste Discovers Celeste

Celeste and I were making groceries on Saturday. She was being pretty good, despite testing her "If you say 'please' enough then grown-ups will give you what you want" theory a few times, when she started looking in the (not ice cream) freezer cases and saw a bunch of boxes of ... Celeste Pizza-for-One. There was much clapping, dancing and a really big smile ...

Celeste Discovers Frozen Pizza

Friday, January 08, 2010

Parenting is Hard: Three-and-a-Half Scenes

I'm sure these aren't the worst things we'll have to deal with over the years, but sometimes it's a fine line between laughing hysterically and how do I handle this.

Scene I

Quinlan is in the bath. I am downstairs and hear:
"Snow White! Snow White! C'm on! Go get your gun!"

Talking with her afterwards, Quin explained that it was Cinderella who wanted Snow White to get the gun. I don't know if that makes it better or worse ... although it sounds like Disney has an as-of-yet underexploited Princesses niche on their hands.

Scene II

Celeste in her kindergarten classroom. The teacher is at the whiteboard writing out some sentances for the kids. Celeste starts yelling out:

Appropriately, she was sent to the princapal's office ... where she was allowed to sit and read quietly for a while ... which is what she wanted to be doing in the first place. I'm not sure the right lesson was learned there.

Scene III

Celeste and Quinn are discussing Celeste's newly proclaimed vegetarianism, as Quinn extols the virtues of eating meat.
C: "Well, Quinn, I just don't want to hurt animals"
Q: "But you don't hurt them. They're already dead!"

And with one vegetarian parent and one not-vegetarian parent, it just makes this whole dinnertime craziness even more fun ...

Scene III½

A little later Quinn was asking about what other sorts of animals are eaten by people. She already knew chickens and turkeys (although she's not convinced those are different), pigs, cows, fish ...
Q: Do people eat bunnies?
E: Yes, some people do eat rabbit.
Q: Slightly worried look on her face.
E: But we won't ever make you eat rabbit, Quinn.
Q: But I want to!

I need to check with her nursery school to see if they had a guest apperance by Anthony Bourdain or something ...