Friday, December 20, 2013

Christmas Boogie

A typical morning in the Strange household…

I hit snooze twice. I’m dreaming about buying extra peas at the grocery store. Yeah, that’s what I dream about now…

E is whimpering a bit but quiets down, so I hop in the shower, but not before I check Facebook and Twitter and find out that the two goofy guys I saw on the side of the road yesterday with massive telephoto lenses made the news – they must have been doing a Big Year, capturing a rare species of bird that had traveled further south than usual. Take me with you, bird! I nudge Mark to tell him about it. He says, “You’re kidding! A Big Year! Wow! And you saw it!!” We high-five.

I hop in the shower, and when I get out, E is crying. I go in her room, and she asks me to turn penguin on. Penguin plays music and projects little flowers on the ceiling. It’s so dark out that she still thinks it’s nighttime. I say, “Good morning, Ellie!” and scoop her up. She’s so happy. I settle her in the recliner and finish getting dressed. I grab a shirt from a laundry pile.

E happily chats with us, and Mark stops by the chair to play.

He grabs her unicorn toy (which she thinks is a piggy) and says, “Meowww…”
“Whatchoo doin’ piggy?” E asks, confused.
“Meowww… Meeeow?”
“Piggy, you no meow!”
“Ohh, what sound should I make?”
“Um… piggy. You go, um… oink oink!!”
“Oh, okay…” Mark has “piggy” nuzzle under her cheek.
E giggles.

Then we’re off to pack our bags, as E ventures out of the chair and starts playing on the floor. A “series of unfortunate events” unfold – a crumb gets stuck to her foot, she has a hangnail, she colors on the floor then tries to help clean it up using a broom which she drops against her cheek. A few whines, tears, and ‘nuggles from Mama, and all is well.

Her new phrases of the week are, “Ok, Mama…” and “Hold on, Mama” and “Ohh, Mama” (with a loud sigh).

Oh, and I have to tell you this!! Yesterday, we were in the parking lot at the grocery store, and there was a huge puddle with a reflection of the store. She saw it and said, “Look, Mama!! A picture!” I told her that she was right – that it was a reflection. She wanted to see herself in the reflection, so I took the pic from above. Gah, I love her, and I love this pic of us!

So, what was I saying? Oh yeah, E running around with her “Ok, Mama”s… My heart melts. It’s almost as if someone told her to just say, “Ok, Mama!” to everything I ever say. She’s listening so much better, too, maybe comprehending more. It’s precious.

I got her dressed as fast as I could, by distracting her with toys, while Mark took out the trash and loaded up the car with work and day care bags. I went on to put together a lunch of leftovers for E (TGIF!). Mark came back in and started to make his lunch. We bustled around each other while E played in the kitchen.

He must have sensed my stress as I glanced at the clock and realized it was 7:55 (8:00 is departure). He slipped his arm around my waist and snuggled my hair, kissed my cheek and neck.

“Whoa. What are you doing?” I ask, laughing.
“You seem stressed…”
“Yeah, guess so – trying to get this food ready.”

I turned around and hugged him as he whispered in my ear that everything was fine and that there was no reason to worry. Then I heard, “Mama!! What are you doing?”

Mark answered, “I’m ‘nuggling Mama…”
She thought that was hilarious and cracked up laughing…

Mark apologized for distracting me and went off in search of his lactose intolerance pills (which he never found).

“You know, I’ve eaten Cheez-Its 3 days in a row without my lactose intolerance pill.”
“Watch out… you don’t want to get the Christmas Boogie… That’s the holiday version of Montezuma’s Revenge.”

Mark went out the door singing a lovely rendition of the Christmas Boogie (to the tune of Monster Mash) as I showered E with hugs and kisses, at her request, and she simultaneously sang:

“Twinka, twinka littow stah
How I wonduh whatchoo ah
Up above da werld so high
Climbing up da werld so high
Climbing climbing littow stah”

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