Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real

I’m late to the party, but hop over to Like Mother Like Daughter for more {p,h,f,r} entries. Sorry, it’s all blurry cellphone shots this week.



I usually keep thrift store stops to once a month and go with a list. They’re a great place to find items we need for very little. However, every thrift store has some temptation that’s attractive and a good price. It’s not really saving money if I’m spending cash on items we don’t need. In this case, the kids both needed new sneakers and dress shoes, and I swung by four thrift stores over the course of a few weeks while out on other errands. I finally found shoes for each. Annie’s dress shoes were definitely the star of the show: $1.07 for handmade red leather Italian shoes in just the right size and new condition.


Annie adores her new Sunday shoes. I strapped them on her feet during lunch and she spent the rest of the meal with her legs stuck straight out in front of her for admiration.






After I let her down to play she spent a large portion of the afternoon walking like a hunchback so she could stare at her shoes, pausing occasionally to reach down and pet them. I finally had to take them off because she was slipping and bumping into things due to Walking While Shoe Obsessed. She sobbed hysterically.

(Annie believes that clothes are optional for babies with such fabulous shoes.)


Jack loves buckles. Anytime we try to put a child in a chair or change a diaper we usually find that “someone” has been there first. The Masked Buckler can be identified by his adorable looks and the way he mumbles “buh-bul. buh-bul. buh-bul” under his breath while committing his crimes. It’s not all inconvenient, though. On a particularly achy day for my back last week I taught Jack to get a box and use it to climb into his own booster chair. Now at mealtimes he can buckle his sister in, then climb into his own chair and buckle himself in. We are all delighted with the arrangement.


The kids also like to push their own stroller now.  My work here is done!

…or not. At a goodbye dinner last week for a fellow Army spouse who’s PCSing, a friend told a story about her three school-aged kids. She gathered them together and assigned each a set of chores for the summer. Her daughter looked at her blankly and said “But Mom, what will you do now?” We all laughed ourselves silly. I remember having a similar perspective in grade school. With all of us kids vacuuming, dusting, doing dishes, sweeping, weeding, mowing the lawn, and folding laundry each week, what could possibly be left for our parents to do? And I had to do school, too! It was so unfair! A note to my 10 year old self: You Have No Idea How Much Work Adults Do. All The Time. Forever.



Someone figured out how to hog both bikes at once. His sister was not amused.


Kids go through stages of wake-up reactions. When they’re tiny, they just cry to summon the food source, and may not even register that you’ve picked them up until you pop a bottle in their mouth. Finally, you figured it out, minion.

When they’re just a little bit bigger you lean over their crib and are rewarded by the sweetest of sloppy baby grins. It feels so rewarding. Interaction! Appreciation!

A few weeks more and they’re babbling excitedly when you walk into the room, then pulling themselves to a stand and screaming with delight when you appear in the morning. Our daughter is still in this stage.

Back in the fall, our son learned to say “Hi!” We’d open the door in the morning to the sweetest little boy voice saying “Hi! Hi! Hi!” (It was slightly less sweet when he’d wake early and then rouse his still-sleeping sister by leaning over to her crib and bellowing “HIIIIIII!” to her, but still cute).

Then he learned to say “Morning!” when we walked in. Adorable, especially since he says it with a Kenyan accent “Hi! Maahning!”

Last week I was so pleased because, after a year of prompting, he finally learned to tell me when his diaper needs changing. “Die-poh.” How advanced! How civilized! We might house-train the feral child yet! Besides, it’s cute.

….well, cute until the first morning when you walk into the kids’ room, flip on the light, chirp “Good morning, babies! I love you!” and your boy responds, not by smiling, or cooing, or saying “hi” or “mahning” but by patting his bottom and demanding “Die-poh. Die-poh. Die-poh.” And hello to you, too, sunshine.

At least the kid’s stylin’ during diaper changes.








8 thoughts on “Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real

  1. $1.07?! Handmade, red, Italian leather?! I want to know which thrift store I missed out on while living near you… Annie’s shoes are gorgeous! (Thou shalt not covet; thou shalt not covet…)

      • I know! Hardly standard fare around here. I’ve never found anything remotely that nice at a thrift store here before, especially this one, which is always dirty with rude staff and wafting cigarette smoke.

    • It was so cute! She reacted the same way when I dressed her for church on Sunday – couldn’t stop staring at her feet, making little tap-dancey steps, and smiling.

    • Yet another bonus to your life in California – it’s almost always warm enough for little streakers, which means less laundry! (This from the woman who just folded seven loads and is sitting at the computer staring woefully at the stacks instead of putting them away).

      • ha! it was the same in NC. naked with socks, dude, we did it 😉 nahhh, in the winter, i would make them wear more clothes. but not even the laundry so much as it saves on AC bills :-p

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