Posts Tagged ‘Samanthaism’

Samanthaism #: Dusts

Sunday, January 18th, 2015

On becoming sneezy tonight, Sam offered this explanation:

“Rana put 15 of her dusts in my sneezers!”

Samanthaism #: Hey, grown ups!

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

A month ago, Cate had figured out how to hold her breath under water, but Sam didn’t have the hang of it. In the meantime, she and Bill have been practicing.

Both at the Memorial Park pool and the Bellaire Family Frog pool, there are water slides. Cate has been eager to slide and have me catch her at the bottom, but Sam hasn’t been excited about sliding. Instead, Bill helped Sam practice launching herself from his knees toward the wall, kicking and pulling, until she grasped the edge of the pool and pulled her face up to breathe.

By the first week of August, both girls were feeling confident, and eager to jump into a(ny) pool, unsupervised. So we’ve begun practicing “sit and stay” on the edge of the pool. Most of the time, Sam and Cate now call out, “Are you ready?” before lunging through the water. Sam usually asks each grown up by name: “Are you ready, Baba Jean?”

While swimming last Tuesday in the condo pool, Sam launched herself toward my back unannounced, into water well over her head, as I was looking the other way. I turned to find our daughter several inches underwater, reaching toward me. I scooped her up, and admonished her to make sure I’m ready next time.

Sam asked, “Why???”

I tried to explain that, if she swam out and no grown up was expecting her, she might end up on the bottom under water with no air to breathe, which would be very, very bad.

Sam looked thoughtful for a moment. Then she replied, “I would yell, ‘Hey grown ups, I’m under water. Come pick me up!'”

Toddler logic: still scary.

* * *
This week, for my birthday, I asked Papa Chuck to play hooky from the Field House and come swim with us at the condo instead. I’m so glad he did! Much swimmy fun was enjoyed by all:

Cate, Papa Chuck, and Sam enjoying the condo pool

Cate kicking with bar floats with Nane nearby

Papa Chuck, Sam, and Baba Jean

Cate and Sam were startled and utterly fascinated to hear Papa Chuck blow their bar float like a bugle…

… but Cate was ready to blow bubbles in reply.

Sam was delighted to swim from the steps to Papa Chuck, from him to Baba Jean, from her to Nane, back to Baba Jean, and back to Papa Chuck, lather, rinse, repeat. I even caught some of Sam’s swimming on video. Check this out:

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Sam and Cate have worked really hard this summer to learn to swim, and I am immensely proud of them. I’m excited to watch them grow and go!

Samanthaism #18: want more chard leaf, please!

Sunday, January 5th, 2014

I know that I’ve mentioned chard before, but I’ll mention it again. Bill sauteed a big batch of red chard with red chiles (bell peppers) and pine nuts, in some balsamic reduction. He chopped up the stems and sauteed them until they were nearly tender, and finished them with the rough-chopped greens.

I hear that some toddlers don’t like veggies, but our girls like ’em. Very yummy. In fact, I wasn’t dispersing it fast enough this afternoon and Sam called to me, “want more chard leaf, please!”

Yay! My parenting rationalization of the day is that I hope this makes up for at least one of the times that we’ve made their lunch or dinner out of franchise chicken “nuggets” while out in the van.

Samanthaism #17: Watch out, Rana!

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

Em brought the girls a really cool book of action rhymes, meaning, nursery rhymes that have accompanying movements of various types. The girls enjoy lots of these:

  • “Where is Thumbkin?”
  • “Open, shut them”
  • “Five little monkeys, and”
  • “Head, shoulders, knees, and toes.”

The girls especially like bouncing on my lap to this one:

Trot, trot to Boston, trot, trot to Lynn.
Watch out, Baby, or you might fall in!

Trot, trot to London, trot, trot to Dover.
Watch out, Baby, or you might tip over!

They like this rhyme so much that they act it out on their own laps with their bears, the Platypus, and other friends.

* * *
I’ve started researching preschools to evaluate educational opportunities for the girls. I fell in love with the first school I visited, the Becker Early Childhood Center at Congregation Emanu El. We’re on their wait list for next fall and the earliest we’ll hear anything is February or March.

In the meantime, my friend, Thy, whose son Greyson is just 10 months old, invited me to go with her to tour Esperanza School yesterday. It’s near Washington Ave and a Rice classmate, Chuck Kuffner, happily sent his daughters there for several years.

I admit that I was underwhelmed. On the one hand, it has a really cool little campus warren of indoor and outdoor spaces for a variety of preschool ages, and even has bunnies and hens on site for nature walks. On the other hand, it seemed to have a lot of young, inexperienced, and/or part-time teachers with significant turnover. It also felt institutional, with 22-24 toddlers and 4 teachers crammed into classrooms that accommodate just 12 kids at other schools. Ugh.

One moment particularly struck me. Lauren, the Admissions Coordinator, had explained to me several times that because our girls had October birthdays, they aren’t old enough to join a “Twos” class and would have to join a “Toddlers” class. She talked about how they group kids into classes with similar developmental abilities. She then asked me if they were talking?

I said, “sure.” I guess she thought my answer was noncommittal or something because she pressed on, “Do they have 10 words each?”


Dude. At 18 months, Sam had more than 60 words and Cate had 100. At two, they both speak in more-or-less complete sentences.

On further reflection, Thy and I saw lots of infants riding silently around in big strollers, several toddlers babbling, and a few kids talking. I’m unlikely to get excited about a school that’s not doing more for language development.

* * *
Sam is teething in earnest again, complete with hand-gnawing and stinky poo. At bed time tonight, she was a little agitated. She had picked up her turtle light and was waving him back and forth against the crib bars noisily — clunk clunk clunk clunk clunk… clunk clunk clunk clunk clunk… — and saying, “Swim, turtle, like a fish!” over and over.

I went in to remind Sam that Cate was trying to sleep, too, and said the turtle was sleepy, and asked her to please cuddle quietly and try to sleep. I helped her lie down again and asked if she’d like a blanket.

Sam said, “si,” gathered her frog blanket close to her face and then exclaimed, “Watch out, Rana, Mama put Baba Jean Blanket on!”

That’s only 9 words, but they’re all in the same sentence.

Samanthaism #16: Hoh-kay

Monday, September 9th, 2013

In the last few weeks, Sam has become much more verbal. However, she’s still learning to enunciate, which means we don’t always understand what she’s trying to say.

To compensate, we’re using “active listening” techniques to validate our understanding. Whenever Sam says something, we repeat what we heard her say to confirm her meaning.

Some of the time, Sam simply replies, “Si,” to affirm that we got what she said. But sometimes — especially when she’s requesting something good — Sam interprets the question instead as an offer, and accepts it with a delighted smile and a breathy, “hoh-kay!” For example:

I ask, “Did you say that you want to switch shoes with Cate?”
Sam agrees, “hoh-kay.”

I ask, “Did you say you want some of Mama’s eggs?”
Sam agrees, “hoh-kay.”

I ask, “Did you say that you’d like to go swim at the pool?”
Sam replies with, “hoh-kay!”

Her “hoh-kay”s are self-serving, but adorable nonetheless!

Samanthaism #3

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

Sam has learned to growl. For about two weeks now, she’s been growling… a lot. As she scrambles around growling, she bears a strong resemblance to… a bear cub. I’m not sure whether she learned this from Daddy Bill, or whether she’s emulating my reading of the punchline from Bear Snores On. Either way, it’s super cute. This clip is from July 5th. Enjoy!

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Samanthaism #2

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Sam is working hard to say several phonemes — maa, naa, and the like. Here she also demonstrates her newfound ability to make bubbles out of saliva with her tongue.

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Samanthaism #1

Thursday, January 26th, 2012

Here’s Sam talking despite hiccups at 15 weeks (or 10 weeks past their due-date) two days ago:

Get the Flash Player to see this video.