Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Ladybug girl

Last month L made a big leap from the 2s classroom to the 3s class. She's had a bit of an adjustment, as in this class there is more structure and more implementation of a formal academic curriculum. The whole school has had an adjustment in tandem with her, because the 3s class meets on one half of a very large room. The other side is occupied by the 4s-5s class: E's class. For the first time in years, there are siblings in the two age groups sharing the room. While the two classes operate independently for the formal instruction portions of the day, the girls move fluidly back and forth to each other. The teachers and director and I agree that nobody should tell the sisters that they have to stay apart from each other, so the teachers have had to adjust to this new arrangement, as well.

The noteverstill girls: bringing juice boxes and entropy to a preschool near you.

In the past two weeks L has grown noticeably more comfortable in her new environment and we wanted to acknowledge her success. She had been using an old ladybug lunch bag but it had contained so many spills that no amount of washing could eliminate the spoiled milk odor. She had been asking for a backpack instead, like E has, and we told her that if that meant she'd carry her own bag she was big enough for a backpack.

Behold, a ladybug on my Ladybug (yes, again with the firefighter boots):



Do you believe that little pixie will be three years old next month?

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Hail a cab

It began last fall with the problem that local taxis are blue, not yellow. A year ago exactly, when L was on the cusp of two instead of three, she would yell at the vehicles we passed and identify them by color. Blue! L would squeal at the cabs, and her older sister would grow increasingly miffed with each sighting. Mama, she'd lament, L thinks taxis are blue. Real taxis aren't blue. We have to take her to New York City.

Two years before that, while L was but a uterine barnacle, we'd taken E to introduce her to the city that never sleeps, and never was a more fitting match made. So when we drove north exactly a year ago with the two girls in the backseat and this baby boy still a bulge in my belly, E felt that she was introducing L to her beloved urban dream. We chauffeured, and E taught L about yellow taxis.

E, at the beginning of the last trip, only remembered New York through the stories we told and photos we shared with her. But last year the magic of the city truly took hold and she fell in love. L probably only remembers New York through stories and photos, and the added ingredient of her sister's enthusiasm. We'll need to take her again so she can develop her own memories. They ask often when we can go to New York again and we say next year sometime, when your brother is a little older.

(Translation: when your collective sleep habits stabilize enough for us to contemplate an extended hotel stay in a sane frame of mind.)

They knew G was coming, during this trip last year. I was six months' pregnant. They knew they had a baby brother en route.

On our last morning when while we contemplated souvenirs L fell asleep as we rode the big ferris wheel in the Times Square ToysRUs. That left E and me to finish the shopping. She found something for herself and something for her sister and then, she insisted, we needed to buy a present for her brother. It needed to be something good for a baby, something that would introduce him to New York City. She picked out a little plush taxi with motorized wheels. With a flip of a switch it drives haphazardly in unpredictable directions across the floor.

A year ago today we were driving home from E's second trip to New York City, L's first trip, G's negative first. The thing that made me realize the anniversary of that adventure is that I was watching G play on the kitchen floor, with his very favorite toy. Pin It