Monday, August 30, 2010

I'll Have What He's Having

Margaret is very interested in people food. 

I suppose it's a good development, since she needs to get interested in people food at some point.  Because then I can get dressed in the morning without my first thought being "how easy access is this shirt?"

And besides, it's awfully cute to watch her strain for things she can't have.

She keeps a close eye on us while we eat.

And drink.

And she reaches for things.

And sometimes we don't do a great job of estimating exactly how far she can reach, and she gets them.

We took the pizza away, but she got a consolation prize.

What a nice father she has. 

Speaking of Stolen Books And Eating Your Friends

After* the other baby M left, Margaret reclaimed her book.  It's a somewhat odd book.  It's crinkly, and has places on which one can chew, but it lacks words, and the pictures present a somewhat odd story.

First, there's the possible intellectual property issue to do with the elephant and the crocodile.

I mean, the bank is even sort of grey-green, and is probably greasy.** 

Of course, there's some disagreement as to whether the crocodile is a crocodile made cute, or a hippopotamus made crocodiley.  It's made a little clearer on other pages where you can see the different colored tummy (which isn't itself a consistent different color, but what can you do?)

The plot of the book seems to involve a lion, giraffe, zebra, crocodile and elephant all playing happily together.  My theory is that there's some sort of deal going on between the crocodile and the lion, and they're going to eat the others.  Which is how I tell the story to Margaret when I "read" the book to her.  I'm sure that's a healthy way to interact with her.

Anyway, she is very studious in her reading.

Sometimes she has to look more closely to parse a fine point in the narrative.

And, since she recognizes me as an authority***, she sometimes asks for my help.

We discussed the author's lack of anxiety of influence regarding Kipling, and she was duly disgusted.

And decided to practice an act of practical criticism.

How often I've wanted to do that.  (Hemingway, I'm looking at you!)

*A day after, but I'm trying to segue.

**If you do not know what I am talking about go immediately and read The Elephant's Child and then be ashamed of yourself and your parents. 

***I'm enjoying this while it lasts.

Friends Means Never Having To Say "Pass The Salt"

The other M baby came over again, bringing her parents with her, obviously, and she and Margaret seem to have settled into a routine.

The other M baby takes Margaret's toys, and Margaret eats her foot.  (In defense of my carnivorous baby, I would like to point out that the other M baby had just swooped in and taken the book from her, so aggression on Margaret's part may have been justified.  As her tooth grows, however, we will stop letting her chew on other babies).

She captured the foot,

looked to us for permission,

and with appropriate parental sanction, dug in.

I wonder what this says about her eventual personality? 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

So Much For The Chock Blocks

I've been noticing a trend in the last few weeks.  We establish some containment strategy - swaddle, blocks, chairs - and Margaret figures out how to bypass it and go on with whatever it was that she wanted to do. 

This is her waking up from her nap today.

Wrong way up and with both her hands out.

She's slightly impeded by the block, but not much.

See?  And not a bit ashamed of herself.

Why Buy Toys?

I imagine every parents has this moment.  That moment when your child ignores and avoids all of the nice, shiny toys that you have bought for them and heads straight for the tupperware.

See?  There's plenty of interesting, stimulating, brightly colored toys within her reach.  There's a crinkly elephant, which she has been known to gum on for hours.  There is even Jacques the Peacock barely visible in the lower right corner.  And what is she playing with?  Tupperware.  Well, Rubbermaid, since I don't go to the sorts of parties where people get Tupperware.  But the principle is the same.


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Roaming Free Among The Chairs

This post, perhaps, will help to explain why we have built a Margaret-proof fence.

Anyway, sometime last week, she was lying on the blanket being cute.  It's kind of her default position, the lying on the blanket and the cuteness.  She was doing something particularly cute* and I turned to grab the camera.  When I turned back, she was under the table chowing down on a chair leg. 

I asked her politely to stop, and she did, though she swiftly moved to the table leg.

And brought her head into position to eat it.

And then tried to pretend she wasn't going to do anything of the sort when I pointed out that the prohibition on chair leg eating could be reasonably understood to extend to table legs as well.**

I moved her back onto the blanket, and she tried to eat me.

And then, when I proved less amenable to this plan that she would have liked, moved on to my shoe.

It was at this point that I decided to stop taking pictures and intervene.

Because I'm pretty sure that this isn't what her doctor meant by "start her on solid foods."

*Well, this blog is a testament that it doesn't have to be much out of the ordinary round of cuteness to get a picture and a story about it, but it was slightly above average cuteness.

**She didn't actually say "Oh, I didn't know that," because she doesn't know how to say any of those words except "Oh," but she clearly thought it.  Or rather, thought something along the lines of "Curses, foiled again.  This Mommy person is No Fun At All."

RIP Animal Swing

We've had the animal swing for almost as long as we've had Margaret, and it has served us well, even if it was superseded by the bouncy chair for several months.

We started using the swing again when Margaret got so heavy that she grazed the ground in her bouncy chair.

But I think that she's reached the end of the swing's capacities too, which is sad, and limits her chair choice to her high chair and sitting up on her own.

It starts off looking fairly benign.

Though you can tell she's plotting something, and what she's plotting is mayhem and climbing.  See her considering her options?

That is a calculating little look.  Followed by action.

Slow and careful action, but action nonetheless.  And she keeps going.

I'm positive that this isn't safe, and I'm even more positive that she shouldn't be getting her nutritional needs met in this way.

Of course, she seems to think it is a wonderful idea, and tasty besides.

And then when I say she shouldn't, she goes back to looking innocent.

I'm going to pay for her having been an easy baby, I know I am.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Showdown At The Kiddie Corral

We've fenced Margaret in, and anyone who teaches her that song will be on my list.

Actually, she doesn't need anybody else's words to protest her confinement.  In fact, she doesn't even need her own.*  She just uses a well-placed scream or two.  Actually, she rather likes her fenced-in half of the dining room.

 It's an excellent place to play.

And sit up.  Did I mention that she learned to sit up?

*Which is good, because she doesn't really have any words, exactly.  Unless lalalalalala is a word. 

I Want To Be Like Daddy

Margaret and Leo spend a lot of time lying on the floor together, thinking great thoughts.  But Margaret has been feeling lately that it's highly unfair that Leo gets a computer, and all she has are these silly chew toys, even if they are nubbly and frequently cold (if I've remembered to put them in the refrigerator, that is.  But I usually do.  Or rather, I have acquired a large enough supply that I almost always have several in the refrigerator.  It's called knowing your own strengths and weaknesses and planning accordingly).

So the other day, with the help of her brave Uncle Ron, who put his wireless device at risk for this photo op, Margaret Did Something About The Shameful Computer Inequity In This Household.*

Cute though it is, it raises questions about when we need to get her a computer.  2?  3?  Will they be requiring laptops for kindergarten by the time she's 5?

*This is capitalized to show that she meant business.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Self-Swaddling Baby

We've been waffling about whether we need to stop swaddling Margaret or not.  On the one hand, it makes her sleep better.  On the other hand, at some point she needs to learn not to hit herself in the face.*

So we've had her sleep out of the swaddle, and I've gotten up every hour to get her back to sleep.

Anyway, we're back to swaddling, and Margaret is eager to help turn herself into a baby burrito.  She begins by grabbing the corner of the blanket.

And rolling.

And then rolling a little more.

At this point she gave up.  I think she was exhausted by all the productive work she had done.

*Though a certain amount of humor might be derived from the spectacle of a 15-year-old Margaret hitting herself in the face as she slept, we feel that it is part of our duty as parents to try to avoid this eventuality.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Slightly Terrifying Giraffe Meets His Doom

Last night, Margaret again met with STG.

It was a fairly happy meeting, at least from Margaret's point of view.  I'm not sure what STG is into, so if he (she?) enjoys being gummed to sogginess, she (he?) probably enjoyed it.

Anyway, we first had the sighting.

And then the joy at seeing the tinkly monster after such a long absence.

Joy caused, obviously, by the anticipation of chowing down on the malevolent toy.  She began by sizing up her opponent.  Sizing it up with tongue outstretched.

And then she pounced.

Deciding that the particular portion she had her teeth on wasn't exactly what she wanted, she strongarmed the giraffe around.  (It takes a lot of muscle to move a giraffe who doesn't want to move)

She nibbled daintily on the horn which refuses to give us any information as to gender.

And then moved the giraffe again.

And chewed a bit more heartily.

He tried to get away, as stuffed giraffes will if let.

But she dragged him back.

And exulted, victorious, over the carcass of the slobbered.

She then, tired from her labors, rested.