SOL2021 – Adding to My Vocabulary

“This website is about a The Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus. It looks like it’s been updated recently. Let’s see of we can find out who the author is,” I said to my screen of empty Brady Bunch Squares.

Suddenly, I hear a student shout, “That’s cap!”

“What?!” I ask. No only is it unusual for anyone to speak during this period, but I didn’t know what he said.

He repeated for me, “I said, That’s cap!”

“Huhhh?!” I still didn’t know what he was saying. This was about a supposed tree octopus. The earlier period called it “sus” and “not legit,” but I didn’t know what he was saying…

“Cap. C – A – P,” Student 1 spelled out.

And then just as I was about to say, “I have no idea what you’re saying!” Student 2 jumped in.

“She doesn’t know what that means, man,” Student 2 explained to the first student. Then speaking to me, Student 2 explains, “It means fake. He says it’s fake.”

“Oh!” I reply. “Thank you! Yes, it’s a fake website. How do we know that?” I continue, one more word added to my ever expanding vocabulary courtesy of my students.”

Pudge Pig’s Counting Book

“Again?”  I ask.  But she brought me the book and now she is looking at me expectantly. img_9298 I know I will be reading it again…now and at least two more times before dinner.

“Two chocolate tarts for two turtles…”  I continue reading, she’s still invested at this point, babbling and pointing to the turtles.

The story of Pudge Pig continues with donuts and ducks, gumdrops and gophers. Pudge, the young pig temporarily in charge of his uncle’s store, manages each alliterative order.  But my daughter?  She’s barely able to contain her anticipation by the time the five hedgehogs order gingerbread houses – and not because the alliteration ends at five.

She acknowledges the ball the hedgehogs have floating above their tango line, but only halfheartedly.

She knows what’s coming next.

I turn the page and her babbling turns higher pitched and faster paced.

This is her favorite page!

“Six cherries in spice for six merry mice!”  And she waits, just barely, for me to count the cherries and mice before the pointing and the chatter commences.

This is her favorite page.

I try to turn to the next page to read about the barrels of butterscotch for the bears, but she stops me and goes back to the cherries.  I know that once again, we will not finish the book.  Once again, we will not read about how Pudge is able to manage elephants’ ice cream sundaes or the cat’s candy canes.  We will not read about how Pudge gets ten treats when his uncle comes back up from the basement.  Because… this… is… her… FAVORITE…page.


One more thing to be grateful for…

Sitting on the counter,

waiting for his dinner

to warm up.


Cookies here

still warm 

from the oven.


Eyes widen and

he jumps off the counter.

Within seconds,

one cookie is gone

another in his hand.

Can I eat all of them?



they’re yours.

Trying to hide

my happiness,

my relief,

my gratitude that


is where we are right now.


Can we have cookies

again tomorrow?

he questions.

No doubts.

No second thoughts.


Of course.


The Coronavirus Outbreak Is “Like A Nightmare” For People With Eating Disorders 





My Little Reader

She grabs a book and carries it over to the couch. After climbing up into the corner, her back resting against the pillows, she lays the book across her lap. Settled, she begins turning the pages.

She may not be reading yet. (She is only 16 months after all.) But, she is definitely a little reader. My book loving heart couldn’t be more full. ❤️

“She drew on the couch.”

“She drew on the couch,”  my husband mentioned after I got home from my son’s basketball game.img_9076

“What? Where?”

“Right there,” he said as he nodded toward the arm of the couch.  “She was writing on the fuzzy book and then I heard a different kind of noise.  She was writing on the couch.”

“The fuzzy book?”  I asked, unsure of what that meant.img_9075

“Yeah, the one there by your foot.”

“That’s not to write in!” I snapped when I realized which book he was talking about.

“I’d rather her write on that than the couch,” he responded.

“You could give her paper!?”

“She doesn’t like writing on paper.”

I’m not optimistic about what future father/daughter time means for the books in the house.  Or the couch.  Or the tables. Or the fridge. Or the walls.


Right on Track

This is Douglas.

“Let me change your diaper before you go to bed,” I said to my daughter. However, she moved further away to avoid my reach.

That’s when I noticed Douglas. I picked him up and tried, “Douglas is OK with you getting a clean diaper.”

“No!” Lorelai shouted and snatched Douglas out of my hand.

Well, there goes my hopes of her willingly participating in a diaper change. I had to grab her while she was distracted by her dad’s hysterical laughter.

I read on Enfamil’s website recently that 15-18 month olds, “Increasingly understand that she’s a separate person from you with her own preferences, feelings, and ideas.”  I’d say we’re right on track…

Early Morning Panic


Why do I feel a breeze?  Is the window open? No… It’s cold in here…The door is open?  Oh, no!  The door is OPEN!!!

When I let the dog out this morning, I must have not shut the door all the way…


Where’s the cat?  

The cat?!

This entire scenario played out in silence as the kids slept, unaware of the panic their mom was experiencing.

I ran through the house, looking in every room, under every chair and table.  I was in search of a larger than normal, fluffy, orange cat.   When I didn’t find him, I went through the house again, looking in every crack and crevice, the panic building.

“Troy, wake up.  I think the cat got out.  I need you to help me.”  I said, short of breath, entering a panic attack.  To his credit, my teenage son jumped out of bed and joined me in the search.

No luck.

I brought the litter box outside.  I read once that if your cat gets out, that’s what you should do.

No luck.

I walked around outside, hoping that he would be huddled in a bush.

No luck.

I sent my son upstairs to check on his sister.  At the same time, I googled “inside cat gets out”  which resulted in me bringing a blanket that my husband used and some cat food outside.

No luck.

I rotated between walking around and sitting on the stoop, trying to talk myself down.  Is my husband going to leave my because I lost his cat?  No, the cat will come back.  He has some instincts…  Nope, Ryan’s never going to forgive me…

I moved inside on the stairs, periodically checking out the window for the cat.  As my son brought his sister downstairs, I logged on to put in for a sick day.  There’s no way I could leave.

“Oh.  There he is!”  my son said as the cat ambled down the stairs….

Yep.  He was inside the whole time…

A lost cat, a fruitless search, and a panic attack…all before 6 A.M.



Tiny Hugs


“Where’s Lorelai?” I asked, waiting for my daughter to reveal herself.

She pulled her hands away from her eyes, already excited. “There she is!” I said, for maybe the twentieth time.

With her arms still open wide, she walked closer to me.  I don’t know what I was expecting, but it wasn’t the hug I got.  She wrapped her arms around my neck and squeezed.  A real hug!  In her fifteen months, this was the first real hug I’ve gotten and it came without prompting.  Not a lean or a cuddle because she was sad.  A hug!




My Big Girl


After a beat, I realized the nurse was calling your name, just pronouncing it wrong. Again… “Let’s go, baby girl, it’s our turn,” I said to you as I gathered all the things we brought in with us.

You grabbed your pen and card and started heading to the door the nurse was holding open. I hurried to finish collecting everything and followed you.

“Right down here,” the nurse said as she walked down the hall, leading our small chain. I watched you walk all by yourself, realizing that this was happening. You were walking yourself into your 15 month doctor appointment. How have you grown up so much already?!

“Go ahead in here,” the nurse told us as she gestured into the room.

Without any more direction, you turned into the room and walked over to the chair. I followed.

This is how it’s going to work with you and me, Lorelai. You’ll lead and I’ll follow. You’ll say hi and smile at strangers and I’ll be there to hold you when you get scared or hurt. You’ll keep growing and I’ll be there to watch. To marvel. To enjoy every second because I know. I know it goes by way too quickly.