Potty Professional

We finally took the plunge – no diapers except sleeping. All day, at home, on train and bus, and at school PiElla only wore panties. Or maybe I should say panty, singular. As I picked up PiElla from school today, the father of one of the oldest kids in PiElla’s class held up a great big plastic bag of clothes and exclaimed to another parent “guess who’s potty training.” Meanwhile I’m picking up my daughter, one of the youngest kids in the class, and she’s wearing the same pants and panties she was wearing when I dropped her off at school this morning. In truth she’s probably had a lot more practice than the older child, since she’s been using the potty since she was three months old. Later she went through a phase when she was learning to walk when she really wasn’t interested in using the potty. Now at 20 months she has quite effortlessly and gracefully left diapers behind. Mama is proud and impressed.

Happy Birthday Grandma Diane

I smile thinking of you when your granddaughter slurps down her goat milk (much preferred over cow), is drawn in awe to the giant redwood in the UW quad over the showy cherry trees, and delights in rolling in the dirt in our p-patch garden. I miss you always and especially today but I know you are with me and our little PiElla Diane every day.

Day two and first transit commute

Much to my relief PiElla did not get train/bus sick, unlike our carsick experiences of the day before. In fact, we had a wonderful commute in. We cuddled and chatted the whole way (“eye, yes that’s your eye. Eye, yes that’s Mama’s eye”). I felt so privileged. With busy toddler her and busy mama me, it feels like it has been more than a year since I spent a whole hour just being with PiElla, stroking her hair, looking into her eyes not having any agenda except to enjoy each other’s presence. It’s part of what I love about taking transit. It is often an opportunity to send some preciously rare unstructured, spontaneous, relaxed social time. Now I get to share that with my daughter two times a day.

School went great. I dropped her off in time for morning snack and picked her up after lunch. She had a wonderful time and wasn’t the least bit clingy. She’s taking to her new school like a duck to water, as they say (quack, quack, quack).

First day of school!

Today was PiElla’s first day in the toddler room at the Montessori based UW childcare center (just two blocks from my office). She’s very excited about “school” (a word she says with enthusiasm) and when we talked about the kids she played with today she signed for more. She’s fitting right in and the transition is off to a great start (minus getting spectacularly car sick both going and coming home – hopefully she fares better on the bus tomorrow!)




DIY Plumbing – Parent Style

It’s official, we are parents of a toddler. We’ve had our first child drops pencil in the toilet, parent is too distracted to remember to retrieve said item before flushing, parent gets to get creative to retrieve said item which has successfully flushed out of the bowl (though fortunately still in reach).


“Bubbles” PiElla says and signs for more (her own creation – pointer finger of her right hand stabbing enthusiastically into her left).

Other favorite new words: turtle, baby (“mama, daddy, baby!”). It seems like she gives a good try at saying most everything we throw at her these days.

A year ago

A year ago we found out that the medical skills and resources existed just minutes from our home to enable our precious daughter’s skull to grow “normally,” her brain to develop, and her life to be the regular/extraordinary life we had dreamed of for her.

It’s easy to connect back to the fear and the pain of that time, one year ago, but the pain was temporary – the triumph will last the rest of our lives.

24 steps!

PiElla is a dedicated student these days to the science of walking. She’s been practicing standing up on her own since November and took her first steps on her own at Christmas. Up until last night she always topped out at 3 steps. Yesterday she kept going, regaining her balance a couple times to walk 24 steps in a row!