Harper in action.

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Saturday, February 28, 2009

A Very Sweet Moment

So last night I was reading in bed. I discovered this amazing techno-thriller called Daemon which I cannot recommend highly enough. It's a bit over my head technically, but the author keeps the story compelling (and frightening) enough that you cannot put it down. But I digress.

So I'm reading in bed and McCall had fallen asleep on the couch in the living room. I heard some rustling and thought it might be McCall, but after a moment I could tell that it was actually Harper. I assumed she was using the potty and would do one of three things, 1) go back to bed; low probability, 2) go out to the living room; high probability, or 3) come into our room; moderate probability.

Well, it ended up being number three. I saw her little head on the far side of the bed and put my book down and looked at her. Typically, in the middle of the night she is very groggy and sometimes severely discombobulated. But while she was obviously sleepy, she was also alert. As soon as I looked at her, her face changed from the sleepy, "it's too bright in here" frown common to most of us to a great big smile. She then reached out to me and rushed to the side of the bed to be lifted up. I pulled her in and she snuggled right up to me.

She wanted some water so I got her cup from her room and then she wanted to be under the covers so I pulled them over her. We lay there for a minute and I relished every second. I was afraid to breathe because I knew it was unlikely that she would fall asleep with me. After a moment she asked, "Where Mommy?", signaling the beginning of the end. I informed her that Mommy was in the living room on the couch and she could either stay with me or...

Before I could finish listing her options she was head, shoulders, knees, and toes rushing out the door for the living room. Oh well. I'll take what I can get. And what I got will be a cherished memory. For me at least.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Our Yellow Butterfly Ballerina

So Harper Jo has been taking this Ballet/Tap class for toddlers, and she LOVES it. Her only complaint? The ballerina clothes were all black and pink and white. She wanted YELLOW (her very favorite color) and let me tell you, yellow tights are hard enough to find, let alone a whole outfit. But thank the lord for both the internet and a site called Etsy.com - where someone can hand-make just about any darn thing you might need/want. In my case, it was a full yellow ballet/butterfly getup. (See, at a certain point in class, the kids all put on their wings and do a flaying dance.) Anyhoo... my girl got her yellow and I must admit, it does suit her rather well. ; )

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Single Dad pt. 2

Well, day two of the adventure also went pretty well. Picked up Marley and Harper and went over to the Eyres. When we pulled up Harper asked if Alaina lived there. I had to explain that we weren't going to see Alaina and she has a different family that lives elsewhere. I think she associates Jackson and Alaina and considers them a package deal. See one, see the other.

Clarice didn't arrive with the kids for a while so Harper was pulling everything out. She even dumped all of Jackson's Hotwheels on the floor. I made sure she picked them up reminding her how particular Jackson is about his cars. Jack-Jack has a little duck call that Harper loves. She kept blowing this thing all night.

As soon as Jackson came through the door he said, "Harper's here?". He was very excited to see her. Harper did pretty well eating her pizza (after removing every bit of topping including most of the cheese!). She had a bit of salad, and a bite of pineapple and grape. After she was excused she was all ready to play again. But Jackson apparently LOVES to sit at the table. He would not get up from his seat. Clarice told me that the other night she had to set the timer for 30 minutes and then made him leave the table. That is so not Harper.

So then Marley started to get fussy as it was already past 7:30pm (his bedtime). I gave him a bottle, packed him up and gathered all our stuff and we headed home. After another phone call to Mommy for lullaby, Harper went to sleep very easily.

I thought I had everything situated nicely when Marley started crying. I could tell it wasn't regular crying and he was coughing a lot. I gave him a bit of medicine, and offered a bottle, but he was not interested. I picked him up so he wouldn't wake up Harper and tried to soothe him. But nothing worked. I changed his diaper, offered the bottle again. But I had a hunch that he was having gas pains because he wouldn't take the bottle. I gave him Mylicon. Put him down, he cried. Picked him up, he cried. I sang, sat, bounced, walked, swayed. And he cried. Finally, he settled. I went to the living room.

He starts crying again! Then here comes Harper Jo, all flustered and confused. So now I have to put HJ back to bed but Mr. Marley Man is still all fussy. I explain to Harper that I need to check on Marley. Then she starts losing it. Okay. I figure she's closer to sleep than he is anyway. I'll stay here for a second and check on him when she's out. After about ten minutes, I was able to leave her room. And Marley was asleep. Try everything, something's bound to work, right? Well, something did work and he slept soundly the rest of the night. Harper joined me as usual in the middle of the night and showed me how much she loves me by digging her heels in my side. Ah, fatherhood.

Well, both kids are away to school again, but my day is short because Harper has a commercial audition at 4:30pm in Santa Monica so I have to take both of them! Yikes. We'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Single Dad

McCall is out of town this week in Salt Lake City, Utah, so I am on my own with Harper and Marley. Last night actually went very well. Marley is fine, I'm not sure he knows that he's supposed to miss Mommy yet. I almost think that he won't notice she's gone until she gets back, then it will be like, "Oh yeah, I haven't seen you in forever!" and I think he'll be really excited and happy. In the meantime, I think his thoughts are something closer to, "Something's different. What is it? Okay, okay, wait a second, I got it, it's on the tip of my brain...nope. Lost it. Hey, look a duckie!"

But for Harper it's a totally different situation. She was really good after school. She was great during dinner (she won the Clean Plate Award for eating all her pasta). She was allowed to watch one episode of the Berenstain Bears, she had a nice bath, we read books. But then it came that time when I usually leave and McCall sings to her. Suddenly, she started saying how much she wanted her mommy there.

How do you explain to a two year old that her mommy is in Utah and can't be at home right now? It's very hard. But thank goodness for 21st century technology! I got my cell phone, put it on speaker, called up McCall and voila, lullaby time! It worked really well and Harper calmed down after we hung up. I thought it was going to be all smooth sailing after that. But Harper has this music playing, light up, plastic aquarium thing (this really is me trying to explain it the best way I can!!!). If you have kids, you probably have an idea what I'm talking about, if not just don't worry about it too much. Suffice to say that Harper uses this thing to help her fall asleep each night.

Well the batteries have been dying for a while and last night they went kaput. It would stay on for about twelve seconds at a time. And Harper kept sitting up to turn it back on. I knew she would never be able to go to sleep while she was reaching back and pushing the button so much. So I stood over her and pushed the button until she went to sleep. You got to do what you got to do, right?

And so far so good this morning as well. Marley to school (a bit late). Harper to school (a bit early). And tonight we have plans to go to a friend's house for pizza! Hooray. Should be a good time for all (fingers firmly crossed).