April 25, 2017 (after a bath)

*Isobel wasn’t feeling well today- she had a stomachache and so stayed home from school. I gave her a bath after lunch, hoping it might make her feel better. She went to get dressed, and came back for me to finish drying her hair wearing a matching underwear set, a short royal blue fake fur sparkle vest, thigh high pink cheetah-print socks, and the gloves left over from her Blue Meanie Halloween costume. She was also wearing the pink beaded eyeglass chain she found at a yard sale this weekend, making her look like a tiny, eccentric librarian.*

“Hey, Is, how come you aren’t wearing pants?”

“Well… the pants fairy told me not to wear pants today.”

“Oh, well, that’s okay then, we don’t want to tussle with the pants fairy.”

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Thursday, March 31

*Isobel has an earache and is home from school. We curl up together with a big box of tissues and cuddle- then she says she wants to talk. I ask what she’d like to discuss, and she says…*

“Mommy. What can we make that isn’t made but we can use?”

“Like inventions?”

“Yeah, inventions.”

“Okay, Do you have an idea? You start.”

“Ummmm…. okay. What about tissues that fly around and come to blow your nose and then shoot into the garbage when they’re all snotty… like remote control tissues.”

“That’s an excellent idea. You should totally invent it.”

“What about you? Do you have an idea?”

“Yes. Socks that run themselves into the laundry basket when they get dirty.”

“Oooh, that’s a really good one!”

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March 13, 2017

*I’m cooking dinner, when…*

“Mommy, I have a question.”

“Okay.”

“Can you turn the clock to tomorrow and it’ll be tomorrow?”

“Uh, no. No, clocks only measure time, they don’t have anything to do with how time progresses. They just are helpful so you know what time it is… like I look at the clock so I know after an hour, it’s time to take the lid off the pot in the oven, and put the vegetables in, see? Or when we look at the clock every morning so we make sure you get to school on time. Time is what happens because the earth is always spinning.”

“But, what if I got a big rope to spin it faster?”

“That might work. Do you have a big rope?”

*Is goes running into the porch, where Dad is trying to finish his coffee…*

“Daddy! Can we go get a rope?”

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March 8, 2017 (dinnertime)

*Is, finishing dinner…*

“Mommy, can we play a game after dinner? I had a bad and boring day.”

“Um, sure, finish up and there’s still time before bed. What do you mean, your whole day was bad? And boring?”

“Well, I didn’t get to play any games. We played outside in school twice, but no games.”

“Huh. Sorry you had such a terrible, horrible, gameless day. What game do you want to play? Suspend, or maybe a card game…?”

“Hey, what if we made a new game? How about if we play Candy Land… but with fried chicken?”

“Sounds good to me! Might get a little smelly and greasy…”

“Fried Chicken Candy Land!”

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February 20, 2017 (dinnertime)

*I just had my other hip replaced last week. As I’m not up to cooking yet,  Dave, Isobel’s dad, made his specialty- pancakes for dinner. They were a big hit; nobody had to remind Is to eat her dinner tonight! She wolfed down three pancakes and was halfway through her second helping when… *

“I feel happiness flowing through my body.”

“That’s really nice, Is.”

“It’s the pancakes.”

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February 1, 2017

*Is gets two or three pages of homework every day (except Fridays), and once a month the teachers send home a new Sight Words sheet. We put that sheet up on the fridge after we work on reading the words together. But after we do the words, Isobel and I take turns making up little stories that use all the words in order, the sillier the better. I like to start my stories with, ‘It was a dark and stormy night…’

Today, the first sight word was ‘she’. We didn’t get much further than that, because…*

“She was a dark and stormy night…”

“HAHAHAHAHAHA! Isobel, that’s hilarious.”

“I’m not done, Mommy.”

“Dude, sorry. Please continue.”

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January 30, 2017 (after dinner)

*Our dishwasher is broken. The repair guy is supposed to come tomorrow with a new pump… ’til then, I’m on my own. I’ve washed four sinkfuls of dishes today alone- not a big deal, but enough to make me not want to wash many more dishes tonight. I put my big pan in the sink to soak, full of hot, soapy, greasy water. We had a friend over for dinner, and while Isobel was still finishing, I went into the kitchen to put my dish in the sink, and run more hot water in the pan. To my surprise and slight dismay, someone had tossed a dish in the sink, slopping greasy, sudsy water all over the counter, floor, and down the front of the dishwasher and cabinets. Normally this wouldn’t be a big deal, but I just had my hip replaced two months ago and am not quite back up to snuff yet. I went back to the porch and said to the boys…*

“I don’t care which one of you did it, but I am NOT cleaning up the mess by the sink. Please go take care of it.”

*I sat back next to Isobel, who was still eating her broccoli. She asked me what happened, so I explained. And with a knowing nod and slight shrug, she looked right at me, and with a perfectly straight face, said…*

“Boys.”

I laughed so hard I nearly fell off the chair.

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January 12, 2017 (after school)

*We’ve been having some toilet issues in the house lately. It’s an older home, built in 1957, so the plumbing, while original copper, is still old and has taken quite a beating over the years. Isobel is afraid of flushing the toilet in the blue bathroom, because one time it backed up and overflowed. Right now, the toilet in the pink bathroom is taken apart, because it was leaking from the tank, so it’s in pieces on the floor ’til the plumber can come and fix it (and the ceiling in the basement, but that’s another project). Because the pink toilet is currently taken apart, the top is off the tank, and you can see the float and valve and stuff inside. She’s referring to the float, which looks just like a clown’s horn bulb! This kid notices EVERYTHING.

Today, I’m in the blue bathroom with Isobel, when a car horn beeps outside…*

“Mommy! What was that noise???”

“What? What do you think it was?”

“The toilet.”

“The toilet? No, it was a car horn, baby. Toilets don’t have horns.”

“Yes they do! I’ve seen it inside!”

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January 2, 2017 (Past Bedtime)

*Is goes to bed and about five minutes later, I’m in the basement throwing sheets into the dryer, when I hear her on the monitor in my pocket, “Oh no!”*

“What, Is?”

“I forgot to put Lammie to bed!”
“Oh, baby, it’s okay, I can do it- you’ve got school tomorrow. I’ll take care of Lammie, don’t worry.”

“Okay.”

**I think that’s the end, and make a mental note to tuck Lammie in somewhere cozy when I get back upstairs. And then…**

“So…I think she’s on the porch, I don’t think she’s in the living room, but she’s all alone, and she’s maybe on the table in the porch, you know, the pointy table. You have to put her in the pink thing with the Velcro back, the one with no sleeves, it’s soft, so she’s not too hot, because then she won’t sleep. The sleeveless one. And then put her blanket that has butterflies on it, and the bed, and if you could do it, put her on the red couch, with the colorful pillow.”

***Somewhere in the middle of Isobel’s directions, I grab a little notebook and pen and start taking notes. She’s counting on me, so totally seriously, to put her baby to bed. I start thinking how funny it would be if I did it PERFECTLY, the way the kid wants, because, clearly, she had a plan… and it’s such an easy thing to do (maybe sometimes), to put a beloved doll away properly for any child… So now, I’m leaning over the washing machine, laughing and writing, (which is why I have it down EXACTLY as she told me). The next second, there’s a clatter on the  stairs, and Munkle comes flying into the room holding up Lammie. He’d heard every word through her bedroom door and was concerned that Isobel was so upset. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who wanted to make sure Lammie got tucked in.***

“I’ve got it. And we’ll give her lots and lots of kisses and hugs, don’t worry.”

“Okay, Mommy.”

“Mommy?”

“Yeah, babe?”

“It’s the FUCHSIA pink one, okay?”

“I got it.”

August 24, 2016

*Is is sick- she was up half the night blowing her nose, even after Benadryl and Advil. Around midnight, she got up, crying and miserable, so we made her some waffles and got her Advil and watched a few episodes of Spongebob together…*

“That’s silly, Mom. Sharks are powerful, and sponges are just for washing.”

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