Posts Tagged ‘Maya’

Christmas Photo 2010

Taken during the 30 seconds no one was actively screaming. Enjoy!


Maya’s Got the Christmas Spirit

Maya’s Got the Christmas Spirit


Duct Tape Can’t Mend a Broken Heart. But It Can Keep a Diaper On.

Success!I was thinking today about how relatively simple most of the problems we solve for the girls are. Sure, there’s four of them, and that can be a bit overwhelming sometimes, especially if they all need something at once or the schedule gets even slightly out of whack. But our biggest issues are spills and boo-boos and forgetting to go potty. Having worked with teenagers for a decade or so, I have a slight inkling of what’s to come – hurt feelings, broken hearts, relationships, cliques, drama, drama, drama, and so forth. Note that I did not say I know everything that’s coming. I am quite sure I have no clue what a tunnel of fire four girls in high school at the same time – all under one roof, all with strong personalities – will be like. I shudder to think. So while today’s trials have their own weight, it’s important to keep perspective and enjoy these days when they are willing to be seen in public with Daddy and believe that he is strong and can fix anything. And to enjoy problems that can be solved with a little patience, strong disinfectant, and the handyman’s helper.

For example: today I had to be reminded that some toddlers need their diapers duct-taped at nap time.

Most parents reading that sentence will chuckle. Most of us have been there. I have been there. So really I have no excuses and deserve no sympathy. I should have seen the tell-tale signs: Maya was increasingly more undressed every time we got her out of bed. Yesterday morning, she greeted me in only a diaper, holding her onesie aloft triumphantly, flashing a big cheesy grin as if to say “Mission Accomplished!” Cute, right? Maybe that’s why I didn’t hear the 50s sci-fi robot in my subconscious trying to warn me: “Danger, Will Robinson! Danger!” But I was to distracted by her adorableness to see the logical conclusion of this pattern of behavior. Only too late did I recall that Arnold Girls love a challenge, and  for Maya there was only one more disrobing mountain to climb.

Only the diaper was left.

You already know what happened. I will spare you the gory details. Let’s just say that she succeeded in getting the diaper off before she went to sleep. Sometime during that nap nature took it’s course. And apparently nature was angry. And Maya awoke. She is an artist at heart, it would seem, and something deep within led her to express her creativity with a display of finger-painting that has led me to nickname her “Poopcaso.”

A shower, and couple loads of laundry, a lot of disinfectant, one toy taken apart, and several rounds of Mom’s special stuffed animal cleansing method later, and we are almost back to normal. As I scrubbed and disassembled, a wave of deja vu swept over me, followed immediately by chagrin: I suddenly remembered I have done this dance before. With the twins. Both of them. We tried a lot of things to solve it. We finally had to go all “Red Green” on ’em: they could not defeat duct tape.

So Maya now has improvised industrial strength diaper closures. If memory serves, the next step is climbing out of the crib. That should be a hoot with this one…

For now, I am thankful for small problems and a big family. And I’m taking some Ginko, cause I’ve really got to try to remember this stuff…


Developmental Psychology 101

Maya On SwingI have a new funding source for the girls’ college education – college students. I’m looking around the house and realizing that I have an active, functioning Developmental Psychology lab right here under one roof.

When Stacey was in college, one of her assignments was to go to Bellevue Square, watch children playing in the play area and write down observations. This is, of course, an assignment destined for disaster, especially if the student is a male and they happen to record some of their observations on a camera phone. “It’s for a school project” is an explanation likely to get you tackled by burly mall security guards.

But why risk the indignity of being taken down by rent-a-cops? Come on over to Arnold-ville, where you can observe four siblings in their native habitat! You can see a living example of just about every stage in your text book, all with in the space of an hour or two. For extra credit, you can take ’em to a playground or feed them a meal and get even more learnin’ on.

Case in point: Middle Child Syndrome / New Baby Anxiety. Maya is no longer the baby. She’s coping fairly well, but yesterday she was trying out all the baby items in the house – swing, car seat, pacifier. I got it on video (sort of – see below), but seeing it live is oh so much more informative.

Or we could hire a film crew. If the recent documentary “Babies” is any indication, people love to sit in theaters and watch babies for two hours at eleven bucks a pop. Sure babies are cute, but they don’t really do that much. Add two preschoolers and a toddler – now that’s entertainment! Of course, this sort of veers into the whole “Jon & Kate” / “Balloon Boy” opportunism, so maybe we should pull it back a bit, even though in the American psyche nothing says ‘I love my kids” more than a little exploitation (That was sarcasm, people. Cutting edge social commentary smothered in tasty ironic nougat).

Until the UW calls to set up their extension campus here, I will continue to document the developments for science and posterity. Think of me as your Dev. Psych. Jane Goodall, and this blog as “Toddlers in the Mist.” The mist, in this case, is the spray from the kitchen sink faucet one of them has gotten a hold of. Yipe! Gotta go!



Final Photos as a Family of Five…

From our combined Father’s Day / Grandpa’s Birthday Celebration. Special thanks to Rachel-B, who serves as the official family photographer. Amazing shots!

Last photo as a family of five. Read More…