The baby is becoming a toddler!


At eight and a half months, we are babysitting the baby. He is becoming more mobile. He isn’t exactly crawling, but he’s going around in 360’s and manipulating himself to get where he’s going. He kicks his legs with a lot of energy, but has figured out exactly how to move them. His upper body is getting pretty strong.

Today we bought him a folding high chair. We figure if he’s going to stay overnight once in awhile, his majesty better have a place to dine.

I see him eyeing a table, so I’ll have to move it. I can also tell that he’d love to get to the sliding glass door leading out to the backyard. My husband has built a room to the back of it. (His own mother stood up for the very first time holding onto the very same glass door).

He didn’t like the way I put him down on the red Ohio State blanket placed on the floor, and he cried a little. He is letting me know, I’d better be as careful as can be. He also baptised a portion of the rug when I was changing his diaper. I don’t remember my son doing stuff like that. I guess I wasn’t noticing, or he didn’t do it around me.

We put him in the big bathtub. His parents put him in this baby to toddler bathtub, we only had a very little infant bathtub, so we got our kids in the bathtub by six months. I suppose we shouldn’t have done a first like that without his parent’s permission ,but he is just too big to fit into the sink.

We held onto him, and he seemed delighted with the whole experience. He splashed his hands. We made sure it was the proper temperature. I couldn’t help remembering my own children in the bathtub. It wasn’t my favorite thing to do. I couldn’t get them in, or out to efficiently. It probably didn’t help that I had a lot of bath toys in there. My husband, on the other hand, is pretty good with moving things along.

We sang a few songs,and he seemed to really enjoy the experience. He seems pretty musical already, and bounces to the beat. I tried to put him to bed, and he protested with a few little cries, but I just checked and he’s sleeping like a champ. It sure has brought back the good, fun memories of having a little one.

Why I Like the TV Show, “The Little Couple.”


imageThere aren’t many reality TV shows that hook me in, but I do like “The Little Couple.”

These are people who suffer from a genetic disorder that makes them shorter than the rest of us. When watching the show, it’s quite easy to forget about their disabilities in the first few minutes. I guess you could argue that it’s like a freak show, but I don’t agree. I think it is allowing people to see that little people are just like the rest of us. They have personality flaws, and good points too. This particular couple are very appealing because of their positive attitudes and love for each other.

I went to graduate school with a little person, and I did forget about her disability in no time at all. I must admit that I wasn’t sure how I should interact with her at first. I quickly figured out the only real difference between us was height.

Naturally, being that small presents enormous problems with every day getting around. Reaching things like car doors, cooking in the kitchen, etc. The show, “The Little Couple” addresses these problems. It shows ways to cope with them.

This little couple is very accomplished , judging from the house they live in and the jobs they hold. Bill is a business owner, and Jen is a doctor. They both have engaging personalities and are truly in love. The show is all about their marriage. Recently it’s been about them adopting two children ( also little people) from different countries.

Three year old Will seems to be a very insightful, compassionate and a smart child. He comes from China and calls Bill Baba (Chinese word for dad). When the couple adopted Zooey (from India) she was quite upset, but in recent episodes she appears happy and well-adjusted. The little couple are good parents and seem thrilled about parenthood.

You can’t help but like Bill because he is so easygoing and interacts with the children in such a sweet, caring manner.

Jen is little, but she has a big presence. Watching her go through chemotherapy for a rare cancer, and putting her newly adopted children above herself is truly inspiring.

I’m not alone in liking this show. It has a huge following on Facebook and on TV. Everyone needs inspiration, and they get it from this show.

Are you a fan of this show? Why?

Leaving the grandchild


I’ve been gone from my grandchild for a week. I do miss him terribly.

It reminds me of the first time I left my three children when they were small.
I convinced my husband that we deserved a trip without the children. I had a babysitter I could trust, so I didn’t feel the least bit guilty. Not at first. But, as the week went on, I realized I had a big empty hole in my heart that the children filled.

Later, when they went to camp it was hard too. It did prepare me for the time they would grow up and leave.

Now, it’s been a long time since I had children. Like my mother always told me, “it’s like a dream.”

The Grandchild Brought It All Back
I feel fortunate to experience those feelings again. Naturally, I come in a very far second or third. But, his little smile of appreciation when he sees me brings those memories back. It’s nice to get a little piece of heaven again.

Looking at Christmas from the outside


English: Santa Claus with a little girl Espera...

English: Santa Claus with a little girl Esperanto: Patro Kristnasko kaj malgranda knabino Suomi: Joulupukki ja pieni tyttö (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Even before Thanksgiving is upon us, advertising for Christmas begins. It is impossible to live in the United States and ignore the impact that this celebration has on everyone.

 

My parents had an unusual take on Christmas. Being Jewish, they didn’t want me to identify with  the religious part of Christmas, but they didn’t want me to feel left out of believing in Santa Claus.  I don’t know how many Jewish kids believed in Santa Claus, but I did. He brought my Chanukah presents on  Christmas. (The truth was Santa Claus worked for his cousin on Christmas Eve, and got some merchandise in return.)  We never had a Christmas tree. We did light the candles and say the blessings each night of Chanukah.

 

I really bought the whole Santa Claus thing line, hook, and sinker. I counted the days until Christmas, and I really believed Santa Claus was watching me, so I made sure I was extra good.

 

When I found out that Santa Claus really wasn’t coming to my house, I was really upset.  It’s the first time I realized that everything wasn’t cracked up to what it was supposed to be. I guess that’s a sad reality we all have to face sooner or later.

 

I really felt like an outsider then because I realized Christmas really wasn’t my holiday. I asked my mother if Thanksgiving was really my holiday. How about New Years Eve? I was happy to find out Thanksgiving was okay.

 

Since I’ve grown up, I’ve come to my own conclusions about religion. I think it is nice to celebrate the traditions that you’ve grown up with, but I’m not exactly sure where the stories come from. (I buy the idea that they were written by people.)

I think there are lessons and basic truths in every religion. It’s too bad people misconstrue the whole thing, and live their own versions of their religions.  As my dear mother used to say,” anything in extreme is bad.”Meghan Kelly and her rantings about Santa Claus are a perfect example of what I find ridiculous.( But that’s another post.)

 

It is impossible to live in this country and not get a little caught up in the Christmas spirit. It is a good thing.  I wish people acted charitable and kind all year-long. I really enjoy the music, and the lights. I like saying “Merry Christmas” to people.

 

Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanza,  and Happy New Year!

 

 

Pleasure Guild’s excellent production of” Peter Pan” provokes memories and thoughts!


Peter Pan 1915 cover 2

Peter Pan 1915 cover 2 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pleasure Guild sponsored an excellent production of “Peter Pan.”  This is a group that raises money for Children’s Hospital in Columbus. One way they do this is to produce a play.  The play was an amateur production, but seemed professional to me.  I loved it so much I put a few dollars in the Children’s Hospital’s  bucket after the show was over.

All of the actors are amateurs who did a terrific job. The choreography was fantastic. The main characters are all actors who’ve been in productions before, but there were children, who couldn’t have had much experience. The acting and singing were just perfect. They didn’t miss a step or a note!

Emily Cipfiani  who played Peter Pan was convincing.  She had a tremendous voice. (I’d read in The Columbus Dispatch that she suffered from juvenile arthritis. You would never know it by her flying and dancing.)

The actors who played Captain Hook (Doug Joseph)  and Wendy (Kelly Hogan) were particularly talented. They had those characters down perfectly.

I was impressed with everything: scenery, costumes, flying and music.

Thoughts the production provoked

This is a very old story. The first time I watched this I was a little girl. I know I liked it then, but for different reasons. I wanted to be like Wendy and fly. “Never Never Land” seemed appealing to me at the time.  I liked the amusing conflicts between the pirates, Indians and Captain Hook.  Peter Pan made a great hero. I truly believed in Tinkerbell. The music charmed me, just like it did in this production!

Now, that I am getting older, the play hit different chords. Do I wish I could go back to childhood and never grow up? (Maybe just for a day)   Can I even remember what it was like to be a child?  Hardly, but those good memories are ones I treasure.

At the end of the play, the grownups were bemoaning the fact that their children were gone. That touched a nerve. Your children eventually grow up and you and  go barely remember their childhoods. They leave one way or the other. We all want them to grow up, but it is a little sad, just the same.

There’s nothing like a good play to touch your heart.

Good job Pleasure Guild!

Did you see the play? What is your opinion?  What memories does “Peter Pan” evoke for you?

This woman at 109 knows the secrets of life


Even though this is 8 minutes long, it is worth watching. It will make you smile. Hint: she sees the glass as more than half full. It seems so simple, but I think we’ve lost that optimism.  In her day, she was an accomplished pianist.

She doesn’t live in the past. She embraces the here and now. That is also very cool. This was made last year. She is now 109 years old.

Tell me your reaction to this interview. What do you think is the secret to a long, happy life?

A Valentine’s letter to my mother


Dearest Mom,

Happy Valentine's Day...

Happy Valentine’s Day… (Photo credit: Јerry)

I wish you were here. It’s almost Valentine’s day, and I still think about you. I thought you would live forever and you almost did. At ninety-one you finally gave in. I feel slightly guilty that I made you sign the paper giving the doctor permission to do that hip operation. I didn’t know you’d be signing your death certificate. I know you would never want me to blame myself. I do believe it was your “time to go.”

I figured you’d come through that like you did everything. You’d had a couple of  really bad breaks. You were a strong woman. You weren’t the type to feel sorry for yourself. Going blind at the end was very hard on you, but you “did the best you could.”

Things were starting to slip. Sometimes, you’d get things confused. One time, when we were listening to the radio, you asked me who was singing. It was Perry Como, your life-long crush.

[Portrait of Perry Como, New York, N.Y., ca. O...

[Portrait of Perry Como, New York, N.Y., ca. Oct. 1946] (LOC) (Photo credit: The Library of Congress)

You didn’t remember much about my childhood. That you’d nursed me through a staff infection for two years, that when I broke my shoulder, you’d made slings out of Cleveland Indian scarves. You couldn’t remember our family trip to Washington D.C. when I was 12.  It was like that part of our lives together never happened.

You rarely talked about my father. Not unless I brought it up. Remembering him was just too painful. I know you were hoping to see him after you died. But being the practical person you were, you didn’t believe that was going to really happen. Even though I’m just as practical, I like to imagine that you are together.

When I came to visit, we stuck with the tasks at hand. Walking down to the dining hall, taking a walk outside, and listening to that old radio station where they played all your favorites: Eddie Fisher, Perry Como, Bing Crosby, and all those singers from the 1940’s.

You still loved to go out to eat. It was almost like you were escaping from that independent living facility every time I came to visit. It was almost like we were partners in crime.

You loved to go to the beauty shop, and listen to the hair-stylists talk to their customers. It was the last place where you could feel like one of the girls.

In your old age you still cared more about me than you did yourself. You asked me if I wanted that extra dinner you’d ordered from the kitchen of the independent living facility where you lived. You asked me if I was comfortable sleeping on the couch overnight. You offered me sheets and a pillow. You tried your very best to be a good hostess.

You dearly loved all your grandchildren ( and great-grandchildren) and gave what you could to all of them. They were your hope for the future. Maybe your exterior seemed a little tough, but inside you were all mushy. You just didn’t let anyone know it.

When we went through your apartment, we found evidence of this secretive side: saved birthday cards, our old school report cards, photographs, engagement and wedding announcements and  programs from college graduations.

So, on Valentines Day I think of the one woman who loved me the most. When you died, you took my nickname with you. It isn’t the same if someone else calls me “Barbie.”  So, a part of me went with you. But, I’ll never forget you.

Happy Valentine’s Day mom.