Living life in the carpool lane..

Archive for February 2014

There are times when M is watching TV, I’m in the craft room, and Hubby is on the computer.  We are all pretty occupied  with whatever we are doing.  Then, M sees something on TV and she runs into the craft room to tell me.

Sometimes, I’m so engrossed in a project that a little distraction is NOT what I need at the moment…

But do I brush her off?  Never.

Every time she runs to be with a little update on what she’s watching or doing, I stop what I’m doing, look her in the eyes, and give her my full attention and interest.

Why?

Because I want her to know that she can always come to me and I will always listen. 

At this point, most of her little updates are filled with toddler gibberish and a sprinkling of words I do understand.  I can pull out her message out of the context of the words she does say, and I try to repeat to her the ideas she was trying to convey to me.  Sometimes I think I’m just waaaay off because she just stares blankly back at me with a “that’s what you got out of this conversation?!” look on her face.  Sometimes, she nods and says “yes.”

It’s these small gestures, like showing complete interest, that makes me feel like it will benefit our relationship in the future.  I want her to feel like she can always come and talk to me, no matter how random the subject may be.  I want to be there for her.

It’s also always so interesting what she decides is important news to her. 

The other day it was that Strawberry Shortcake had to clean the mess she made while making cupcakes and the oven made a mess… she was so distraught, but it was just the cutest thing!

 

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The other day, M was eating a banana with Hubby.  Hubby had to tend to something, so he put the rest of the banana in the kitchen counter and told her that if she wanted more she could ask me and I would help her.

About 15 minutes later, we notice that M was holding on to her banana and just eating away..

She grabbed the banana herself and just continued eating it.. like a big girl.

I lost it.  I started crying.  It’s definitely not “hormones” in the sense that you are all thinking.. no I’m not pregnant.  I’m just so super sentimental.

Sometimes I forget how independent M can be at almost two and a half years old.  I forget that she doesn’t need me for every little thing anymore.  She’s learning how to fend for herself and she’s learning how to be independent.  It’s part of her growing process and I should be so happy for her development.  She’s grown so much in these past two and a half years, from being completely helpless to grabbing her own bananas off the kitchen counter.

Yes.  I cried.  I cried tears of happiness, nostalgia, and love.  Those are what I call the tears of a mom..

Malia either watches too much TV, or she has a great memory, or she just loves singing.

Malia knows and loves so many television theme songs.. it’s actually quite comical.

Paw Patrol
Wallykazam
Callie’s Wild West Adventure
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
Strawberry Shortcake
Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
Sofia The First

Big Bang Theory
Modern Family (
she says, “hey!” over and over)
How I Met Your Mother
New Girl

It’s the theme songs to the shows that Hubby and I watch that make me giggle when she sings along.  We didn’t even know she knew them until she’d just start singing them when the show would start.  The most amusing one at the moment is when she sings the ‘hey!’ parts of the Modern Family theme song.  

What theme songs do your kids know and sing?

When my brother was young, during any meal, my mother would accompany his food with gummy bears.  It got him to eat whatever my mom would try to feed him.

For years, I thought it was the strangest thing.  Not only because gummy bears don’t necessarily go with Filipino food, but because I never got to have any.. no.. I’m not bitter.

It was a phase my little brother went through during a picky eating phase of his life.

I swore that I would never do that with any of my future children.  Gummy bears just didn’t feel like a good habit to get my child to eat.  It was just weird, but my mom stood her ground AND my brother ate.

Well, now, M is going through a super picky eating phase.  All she wants is pastas, breads, and rice…

I read on Babycenter that bribing may not necessarily be a completely bad thing, so Hubby and I have been trying to give M some incentives. 

Cookies, m&ms, yogurt, ice cream… they may not be the best choices, but they’ve been working.  She’s sworn off meat, but now will try 1-2 bites during her meal.  She’s been refusing some vegtables, but will now eat a few. 

I understand the lure of the gummy bears… I understand my mom’s intentions..

My motherhood lesson??
You really don’t know how you are going to deal with your child until you are actually dealing with a child..

What are some of the ways you get your picky eater to eat?

M is currently all about the pasta.  She loves noodles.  LOVES noodles.

Every dinner time is like an episode of Chopped on the Food Network.  Will I get put on the chopping block?  Will my food be good enough for M?

A few nights ago, I passed the test!  She LOVED my dinner, she had three servings!

I made beef with brocolli and udon noodles.   I don’t use measurements when I cook, but I will try to describe the meal as best as I could.

I started off by slicing up some beef into strips.  I browned the beef with some olive oil and garlic.  After it cooked, I poured a can of chicken broth over it.  I seasoned the broth and beef with some soy sauce and fish sauce.  I’m sure you can substitute fish sauce for oyster sauce depending on your flavor preferences.  After I seasoned, I added the broccoli to start to cook. 

While that was simmering, I started to cook the udon.  I buy dry, organic udon noodles at an Asian grocery store.  I boiled it according to the directions on the packaging.  After the noodles cook, I rinsed the noodles with some cold water. 

After the noodles are cooked, I go back to the beef and broccoli.  I added cornstarch to the broth in order to thicken it up so that it becomes a sauce instead of a broth.  Once the sauce thickens, I tossed the noodles into the mix.

The sauce coats the noodles and it’s just so yummy!

M LOVED it.  Every time she’d take a bite, she’d say “delicious!” 

It’s those moments that make me so happy to cook for her.  I just wish that she’d do that with EVERY meal that I make for her…

Are there any recipes you’d like to share that are toddler friendly?  I’d love to hear them!

It’s amazing how much M’s communication skills have just blown up.  I know, I say it all the time, but I mean it every time.

“I found m&ms on the floor!”
“Get d’milk, in d’fridgerator”
“Marshall eats m&ms, it’s dee-licious!”

It’s also funny listening to her try to put together sentences.  Her sentence structure isn’t 100% complete, but she is trying.

“Cape, take it off, Elsa.”
“Snow monster, Rubble scare, him”

An article in Babycenter.com told me not to stop and correct her.  Instead, I repeat the sentence she said, but in the correct order.  Sometimes, she’ll repeat it correctly, other times, she says it the same way she said it the first time.  I know she’ll learn it correctly eventually.  I know I’ll miss her sentence structure when she outgrows it.

Hubby and I are just so amused.  Sometimes, we don’t even realize how well she can communicate with us.  We would ask her a question and we’d be surprised that she would answer us.  It makes us laugh so many times. 

Our little girl is really growing up.  I love watching her bloom.

My “14 Loves” countdown to Valentines Day series is over for the year.  It was my first time doing it and I’m actually really happy with how it turned out.   It gave me a great reason to blog every day again.

If you noticed, I didn’t include Hubby, M, God, my Catholic faith, and any other obvious loves that everyone always includes in their “I love…” type lists.

Why?

It’s not because I don’t love them.  I actually love a lot.  It’s pretty obvious how much I love them all. 

I didn’t put them on the list because I wanted to focus on the little things.  Every day, I get consumed with the mundane details of daily life.  I start to complain about life.  I start to feel bored.  I start to yearn for change and excitement.

“14 Loves” allowed me to focus on the little things in my life that aren’t as mundane as I thought.  It allowed me to realize that my life is full of love and happiness, even in my day-to-day activities.  It reminded me that my life is good, not boring.

Take some time to find the little things you love about your life and hopefully next year you can join me doing “14 Loves.”


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