Thursday, January 23, 2014

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real


The view outside, and inside my window.  We have a beautiful coating of snow along with sub-zero temperatures.  Perfect weather for admiring the snow from a warm house (with power!  We are so thankful!).  

And inside, Zosia has been doing some copywork along with handwriting practice every morning, and her handwriting has improved so much over the past few months (by the way, the coffee is mine, not hers.  I believe it was my first of three cups that morning?  Yikes!  Does it help that I take mind with a lot of milk?)!  Anyway, it's amazing how handwriting practice has increased her confidence in writing things down.  This week's copywork has centered on the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., whose life and work we've been studying.

I still remember when I was in grad school, the dean of the school (who was teaching my seminar) burst into tears while reading the Mountaintop speech aloud to us.  It made quite the impression on me: a grown, respectable man weeping in front of a room full of students.  I found myself in his shoes this week when I was trying to explain the significance of Martin Luther King Jr. to Zosia.  I couldn't hold back tears as I told her about segregation, and the fight for human dignity that took so many years to triumph.  And yet of course as we look around the world so many injustices remain.  Poverty, discrimination,  a disregard for the sanctity for human life.  It is so meaningful for me to talk to Zosia about these things because she, more than any of our other children, seems to have a passion for justice and equality.  It feels like such a gift to be able to help steer the mind and heart of a child.


We always seem to wake up with one or two of these babies in our bed.  Face covered in breast milk, grunting and squiggling in that newborn way.  I absolutely love it.  This one is Clara.  I'm afraid that Ben and I have already started mixing them up from time to time (but we can always tell them apart with a good, close look).  We tried tying some yarn around Clara's ankle to help with differentiation, but it fell off.  I'm afraid that when things get crazy, we have defaulted to calling them "this one" or "that one."   Not the end of the world for a three week old, but this simply must stop! :-) Any tips on keeping them strait?


Not too many months ago, Hugo had long beautiful locks.  I gave him his first "real" haircut, which he didn't like.  At all.  He received many compliments on his newly coiffed hair, and would always respond, "No like it!"  A few days later, we were playing the body part identification game in the bath.  When I got to eyebrows, Hugo responded, "Eyebrows all gone.  Mommy cut my eyebrows."  He frowned.  Apparently, as I was cutting his bangs, he was quite certain that I was cutting off his eyebrows.  Poor little guy!  No wonder he didn't like it.

So of course we did what any loving parents would do and just waited as long as possible to give him another haircut.  Yesterday after dinner he seemed particularly chill, so I invited him to the kitchen and very stealthily trimmed his bangs.  And?  He didn't care!  Ben came in and helped me distract him while I cut his hair as short as possible, realizing the likelihood that he might not want another haircut for a long time.  I cut it like I usually cut Ben's (about one finger-length).  It's a bit patchy in parts, but I figure in a week or two it will be just fine.


Whew, having two newborns sure does help increase the quantity of laundry in a house!  I'm realizing that it's not the baby clothes themselves, which are so tiny.  It's all of the items of adult clothing that get spit up on, the sheets, burp cloths, and then the clothing of the bigger kids, who are now getting into all sorts of messy fun (seriously.  Mud?  Peanut butter? Paint? I have no idea what is on my children's clothing).  I've settled on two or three loads of laundry per day.  The good news is that it's getting done and everyone is wearing clothing.  That's the goal, right?  It's almost easier to fit a chore in when you know that you must do it every single day.  So two loads it is for now, and then when we transition to cloth diapers (the babies are just big enough!  I just need to get around to setting up a system), we'll throw another one in there and not even notice it!  See how I'm playing mind games with myself?

Linking up with Like Mother, Like Daughter today!  Because sometimes the best I can do is upload a few pictures with captions in a given week.  :-)  I hope you'll bear with me!


Melissa said...

I love every part of this blog post! ::happy sigh::

Just to allay your fears about cloth diapering, remember that you will never again have to run to the store to get diapers. You will always have them! And I bet you will be able to get Zosia to change the babies when they are a little older.

Adele said...

That is true! And we go through about 20 diapers a day(!), so cost is no small concern. Rosie has lent us her little diaper covers, too, so we're all set!

Melissa said...

Are you geeky enough to want to quantify your cost savings when using cloth diapers? I know I would be. :-) Try this:

Also, I've heard that some people put nail polish on twin babies' toenails to keep them straight. You know, one color per twin. Short of tattooing, that sounds to me like a pretty good solution for identical twins. Rosie's are so easy to tell apart that there was never a problem.

9peasMom said...

I love your PHFR! Cloth diapers are worth the effort, I had 3 in cloth diapers once but only because I didn't start out doing them and when I switched my oldest had not potty trained but after cloth diapers he did quickly!

Adele said...

If the question begins "Are you geeky enough..." then there's a good chance the answer is yes! Yeah, the cost argument is pretty strong, especially since we already own all of the supplies. So it's free vs. very costly. And I think nail polish might be a good choice!

Adele said...

Wow, three in cloth diapers! Hugo is just on the cusp of potty training (wearing mostly training pants in the day), so I think I will max out at two. :-)

Melissa said...

I figured Ben was geeky enough to enjoy the spreadsheet. And your high school does seem to breed for geeks. However, you don't really seem to act like a geek these days, so I wasn't sure about that.

Speaking of "breeding for geeks," which you apparently are :-), Meg once told me that TJ doesn't "breed for football." Chess team, yes. Even track, if it's long-distance stuff. But football, not so much.

Lauren Oliver said...

Looks like you've got your hands full and yet, as always, managing with grace and perspective. =) Go you!