Monday, July 31, 2006

Dear Diary...

Friday: I took Lucia over to a friend's house for a playdate. It went pretty well until Lucia became obsessive over calling one of the cars in a Richard Scarry book, a "Jupiter car." (At the moment, she's obsessed with planets.) This would not have been so bad, except that she repeated it ad nauseum. Her friend got pretty peeved. When we took the book away, Lucia had a melt-down. Afterward, I sat in the passenger seat of the car and called people on my cell-phone (wishing so desperately that I had brought a book) in an attempt to appear blase while Lucia raged and refused to keep her car-seat straps on. At one point, I looked back and asked, "Are you ready yet?"

Lucia had her hands behind her head and a stubborn set to her chin. "Nope," she replied. I burst out laughing. Soon after, Lucia decided she was ready to go, so I strapped her in and we took off.

Saturday: I've had a sore throat all week. All I've wanted to do is sleep. Nonetheless, I exercised for the first time in days. Afterward, I ignored household chores to work on chord changes. I think the family did something on Saturday, but I don't remember what it was.

Sunday: We went to church for the first time in weeks. We like our priest-- he gives short, compassionate homilies. We sit up in the peanut gallery (i.e. choir loft) with other families that have rambunctious toddlers. Lucia went up to a family in the front row and said, "It's Jupiter! It's Jupiter!"

The little boy about her age said, "No it's not, it's Mommy and Daddy." I silently cheered.

At least Lucia was merry that morning. The meltdowns wreck havoc on my nerves. I understand in a way I never did before how parents can just sit there, zoned out, while their children holler and whine. It's not oblivion: it's lock-down survival mode.

Later on, I worked on some more chord changes, played a few songs, ignored my chores (again) and took a nap. I love naps. Why don't we have naptimes in the workplace? Sleep is key to memory. In graduate school and at my full-time jobs afterward, I had my power-napping techniques down-pat. I would eat lunch, and then konk out on the couch for as long as I had a break. I briefly considered bringing in an alarm clock, but somehow, I always managed to wake up before it was time to go back on the desk.

I've discovered a way to practice guitar without Lucia getting jealous (i.e. crawling on my lap, muting the strings with her hands, etc.). Whatever song I'm working on, I just sing her name in place of the lyrics.

Monday: I gave the bathroom a deep clean. See, I'm not totally useless when it comes to domestic tasks. I want to get paid, though.

8 comments:

Nonny said...

I'm all for shirking chores to do something fun. Hence, why I've read eight books this summer.

My 3 year old is a master of throwing a fit. If he doesn't get his way then he'll usually say something like "Then I'm not eating dinner". My response "OK". Which is how I always respond to his ultimatums. Exhausting to say the least.

I took a nap yesterday. First one since my vacation. I really think they should be a required part of the day.

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Wow! Lucia hasn't given me ultimatums yet. So far, I'm the one wielding them. (Not too often, though, because I need to deliver upon my promises.) "Okay" is a perfectly legitimate answer to "Then I'm not eating dinner." It's hard for my friends whose toddlers have low weights, though.:(

Lone Star Ma said...

Yes, I have a low-weight toddler. It causes me to do crazy things. For instance, she is currently eating her third packet of Dora "fruit" snacks in the last 10 minutes. I let her eat anything - it's disgusting.

Sounds like you are the queen of handling meltdowns, even though it leaves one feeling jingly-jangly. Planets, huh? Does she know that song that goes "Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars..." The Lone Star Girl used to sing that in Montessori. Maybe Lucia will collaborate with the Lone Star Girl on her terraforming aspirations one day.

I hope your throat feels better!

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Thanks, Lone Star Ma! Please, please send me the words (and hum the tune, too) to the planet song. I've been trying to make up a planet song for Lucia, but my results have been less than satisfying. All my songs sound like

1)House of the Rising Sun
2)Shady Grove
3)Greensleeves

A minor all the way.

Lucia has a friend who gets to eat ice-cream as a major source of protein, and also eats whole pats of butter in attempts to make him gain weight. Despite myself, I'm a bit wistful...

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Regarding planet songs: I do know (by reputation) The Family of the Sun, but it's to the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell." Not my favorite tune.

Lone Star Ma said...

This is not exactly how I remember the little I remember, but this is definitely the song:


The Planets Go Spinning - Original Author Unknown

Sung to: "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" (Indeed! It is just a sin to reference that instead of the original anti-war song Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye)

The planets revolve around the sun, hooray, hooray.
The planets revolve around the sun, hooray, hooray.
The planets revolve around the sun
And spin on their axis, every one.
And they all go spinning
Around and around they go!

Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars, hooray, hooray.
Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars, hooray, hooray.
Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars,
All whirling and twirling among the stars.
And they all go spinning
Around and around they go!

Jupiter and Saturn are next in line, hooray, hooray.
Jupiter and Saturn are next in line, hooray, hooray.
Jupiter and Saturn are next in line,
Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto make nine.
And they all go spinning
Around and around they go!


A band that one of my college room-mates was in (an Irish band, but what the hey) used to sing a version of Shady Grove but it seems to me the lyrics were a bit different than the ones you had posted. Something about "shoes and stockings in her hand and barefeet on the floor". It was gorgeous and made me want to jump the mandolin-playing singer's bones, had he been interested which he sadly was not. I used to think about maybe naming a daughter Shady Grove...I still think about it sometimes...

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Thanks so much, LSM! Previously, the only words I knew to that tune were "The Ants Go Marching." I have them counting down from 4 so that in the last verse, the ants go marching one by one and the little one stops to shout "we're done!"

There are a bunch of different verses to Shady Grove. My favorite three verses begin with:

1)Peaches in the summertime...
2)Went to see my Shady Grove... [this has "little bare feet on the floor]
3)Cheeks as red as a blooming rose...

I made up a verse for Lucia:

Dance around, my sunflower girl/Dance around, my daisy/Dance all night and never sleep/Almost drive me crazy!

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

P.S. An alternative chorus, too, is:

Shady Grove, my little love
Shady Grove, my darlin'
Shady Grove, my little love
I'm goin' back to Harlan.


That would be Harlan, KY.