Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bedtime Chat

Tonight after Eli was all changed into his jammies and resting in my arms...he wanted to chat.

"Maybe we could sit in the dark and talk, Mommy?" he asked as we settled into the rocker/recliner together.

"I love talking with you, Eli. What do you want to talk about?" (I'm not stupid. I know that my boy won't always want to sit and talk with me. So I don't let these moments pass by.)

"Mmm...maybe we talk about our favorite Wow! Wow! Wubbzy episodes? Mine is Wubb Idol."

(If you don't know about Wow! Wow! Wubbzy...where have you been?! Wake up and start watching! Eli's fav episode, Wubb Idol, features Beyonce as one of the characters/singers. The song they sing is CRAZY addictive, though. It's running through my head as I type.)

Anyhoo...after chatting about Wubbzy for nearly 5 minutes, he was ready to hit the hay. Gotta love our bedtime chats.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Missing Puck

On Monday when I got home from work, Eli was waiting at the door for me, as he sometimes does. (Usually if he meets me at the door, it means he's in a VERY good mood, which is good for ALL of us.)

So my mom (Eli's babysitter) left, and Eli asked to use the laptop up on my bed. We got all "snugged in" together on the bed, with the laptop perched on a pillow on Eli's little lap.

While we were waiting for his favorite website to load, Eli got a solemn look on his face, pushed the laptop off of his pillow, and looked me right in the eye.

"I miss Puck, Mommy. Do you still miss Puck?"

"I miss Puck every day, Eli."

"Me too, but I gonna take good care of you, Mommy..." and then he paused to rub my arm before asking, "So did Daddy say we can get another cat, or what?"

"Not yet, baby...but I'm working on it."

So if any of you happen to talk to my husband, tell him that we're ready for another cat! Please.

Monday, March 28, 2011

"Snug me in!"

This morning, as I was getting ready to go to work, I checked the video monitor and noticed that Eli was awake, but still lying in bed curled up with Blankie (Blankie is so important that he DESERVES a capital letter).

So I tiptoed into his room and said, "Good morning. Are you still sleepy?"

"Yes. Please 'snug me in,' Mommy."

I love the way we make up and use these nonsense words/phrases that are pretty much only meaningful to us. I 'snugged him in,' which consists of covering him up snugly with his robot comforter, and placing Blankie in a certain position on top of the comforter (with the tag facing toward his face), told him I'd see him after work, and said, "I love you."

Eli smiled a sleepy boy smile, and said, "I love you too, Mommy."

Definitely a good start to my day.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Are We There Yet?

Eli and I were in the car together (on our way home) today when this conversation began...

Eli: I not gonna say 'Are we there yet? Are we there yet?' That is SO annoying.

Me: Yep. That would be annoying. Your Uncle Kyle (my brother) used to say that ALL the time when we were little. It used to drive me crazy!

Eli (very adamantly): I not gonna do it, Mommy. And I not gonna let ANYBODY drive you crazy!

Me: Thanks Eli. It's good to know you're looking out for me.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Little Helper

This evening as I was putting Eli back into his car seat, my sunglasses kept falling off the top of my head, where I had them perched precariously. Finally, Eli reached up and carefully removed the sunglasses for me, and held them until I got him all buckled in.

"I always help you out, Mommy," he said with a smile. "I'm your little helper!"

I hope he always will be.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Talking to "You Know Who"

Tonight as we sat down to eat dinner, Eli jumped up and said he had to use the bathroom. When he got in there, he closed the door as usual. But I could hear him talking...

Sometimes he'll sing a little tune while he's doing his business, but it didn't sound like singing tonight. So I stepped quietly toward the bathroom door and listened. This is the "conversation" I overheard between Eli guessed it, HIS PENIS!

Eli: You need to point down!
Penis (using a slightly higher pitched voice than Eli's usual voice): I don't feel like it!
Eli (pleading): But I don't want to pee everywhere!
Penis: Oh, ok.
Eli: Thank you very much.

Enough said.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


So Eli's been watching bits and pieces of news stories about the ongoing tragedy in Japan. He was asking about the nuclear reactor newsflash that described the possible attempt to contain the radiation using a concrete "sarcophagus." His first question was, "What's that word mean?"

So Daddy tried to explain that it would be like building a box around it, to keep the radiation from coming out. Eli practiced saying sar-coph-a-gus that day. He seemed satisfied with my husband's explanation.

Today, while digging through the toy box, Eli referred to it as a sarcophagus. He explained that it's a box that holds his toys, just like the concrete sarcophagus on the news. He even used the word correctly, pronounced so that we could understand him. Whoa.

Monday, March 21, 2011


My husband took Eli on a walk this past weekend. While on the walk, apparently Eli started walking backward, then forward again, and finally turning around in circles like a crazy man.

My husband asked Eli, "What are you doing?"

Eli, the tech-savvy boy that spends FAR too much time on the laptop and iPad, easily replied, "There's a mouse (computer kind...not the squeak squeak kind) controlling me! It's making me go all different ways!"

Seriously? Gotta love the imagination of a 3-year old. :)

Sunday, March 20, 2011

You Don't Want to See!

While my husband and I were finishing our dinner, Eli ran full blast into the kitchen (after having been excused from the table) and asked for a tissue.

My husband asked the obvious question, "What do you need it for?"

"You DON'T want to see what this stuff!" Eli exclaimed. Now THAT peaked my interest.

It ended up being water that spilled out of the AquaDoodle-ish pen he was "painting" with. I wish I had been able to capture the look on his face, though! I thought he was going to be in some serious trouble...and so did he. Crisis avoided.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Big Plans

Apparently Eli has got some BIG plans for his future. This evening, in the car on the way home, Eli started explaining his plans for building a restaurant.

We did tell him that he needed to attend college (IU Kelley School of Business, of course :)) first, before going into the restaurant biz.

He's been talking about this for a while, but today he reviewed the fact that it's going to be called "Stucco and Brick" and will be located on an island (the island part was Daddy's idea...), and they will serve ice pops for dessert. about 20 years, Google (if that's still the term being used in 2 decades) "Stucco and Brick," and come to Eli's restaurant! Come hungry, and be ready to enjoy an ice pop after your meal.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Dressing Up

Today my husband brought home a plastic beaded necklace (with shamrocks on it) and gave it to Eli, who promptly said, "Thank you" and happily put the necklace over his head.

He must have found another necklace in the toy box at some point, because we noticed later that he was wearing two strings of beads around his neck. When asked why he was wearing both necklaces at the same time, Eli quickly replied, "Because TWO necklaces are FANCY, Daddy."

Quite true.

Thursday, March 17, 2011


I took Eli to the Pet Refuge (a no-kill animal shelter) to look at the cats up for adoption this evening. When asked by a volunteer if we were looking for a specific kind/color of cat, I opened my mouth to speak...and Eli beat me to it!

"We want a black cat," he stated very matter-of-factly.

(You may remember that his original color preference was green.)

**NOTE: I did explain to him that just because Puck (our cat that passed away in February at the age of nearly 16) was black doesn't mean that we HAVE to choose another black cat. He continued to approach primarily black cats anyway...)

Anyhoo, we had a nice time looking at all of the cats available for adoption. Many of them were in the main cat room, able to roam around and approach us if they felt like it.

Eli insisted on introducing himself formally to each cat he saw, which took quite a while. I enjoyed observing the "conversation" firsthand. The kid is just SO stinkin' sweet sometimes.

"Hi, kitty. My name's Eli." Then, while the cat was staring at him (most likely sizing up the strange but oddly polite 3-year old boy in front of him/her), Eli would say to me, "What's the cat's name? (pause) I think the cat is trying to figure out MY name." :) Ah, to be inside the mind of Eli.

The lesson to be learned? Always introduce yourself politely when meeting a cat for the first time.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My Shorty: A haiku for Eli

Here's my shortest entry yet.
A haiku for Eli:

My Shorty

Growing little man
Exploring this world of ours
Love his "Eli" scent.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Eli's new favorite game is UNO. Nope, he doesn't go for the toddler version, or even the Thomas the Tank Engine version. He wants "grown up UNO!" And he even understands and uses some strategies to help him win!

Today when I got home, Eli said, "You have a good day, Mommy?" (and without waiting for an actual answer...) "Wanna play UNO with me?" How do you say no to that?!

After losing 2 games to my 3-year old, I started to feel a bit downhearted, but Eli was pretty pleased with himself. (And no, I don't let him win...)

After dinner, Eli started begging my husband to play with him. Big surprise.

I can still hear Eli's voice, and see the look on his face when he turned to his daddy and said, "Aww, but I don't HAVE a blue card OR a four...but I DO have a draw four WILD!"

His face literally changed from sad and pouty (such an actor!)to an evil-looking grin, and finally ended in a fit of giggles as Daddy drew four additional cards. Eli eventually won the round.

Maybe next week we'll try some Texas Hold 'Em. :)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Keep Going? No!

During our one day spent at the Grand Canyon last week, while riding on a shuttle bus, Eli started counting aloud. He got up to 20 (as usual)...but he didn't stop. He just went on up to 29. But then he said twenty-ten!

So today when we were in the car together, Eli started counting again. This time, however, he made it all the way up to 30. :) He was so excited, he needed a high five clear in the back seat. Then we tried to get him to continue on, up to 40...but he said, "No. I can't." Period. End of story.

Eli loves to learn new long as the learning is on his terms. If we try to push him toward reading/listening to a book, he will undoubtedly choose to walk away and play elsewhere.

For instance, today when I came home from work, before counting to thirty in the car, he brought me his library book, Pete the Cat, climbed up on the couch beside me and started reciting the words on the first page. I eased myself out of my seat and grabbed the video camera before he realized what I was doing. He sat and "read" most of the book to me, with me filling in the gaps when necessary.

He never would have read that book to me if I'd asked him to, though. Such an oppositional little boy. I wonder where he gets it?! ;)

(It's from me...I can't blame his dad for this one.)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Crazy Things

I was actually able to rest in bed a bit this afternoon. This ear infection has really gotten me down. At one point, though, Eli came into my bedroom to tell me he was getting hungry for dinner.

My husband graciously offered to go out and grab something for us to eat. Eli decided that he wanted to stay home with me, instead of riding along with Daddy into town. Then Eli said, "Mommy, you better come downstairs and keep an eye on me, so I don't do any crazy things!" (He put MAJOR emphasis on the words 'crazy things.')

So that statement got me thinking...what sort of crazy things would he do if I weren't downstairs with him? Uh-oh.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

"Are you all 'snugged' in?"

I lost hearing in my left ear while returning from the Grand Canyon. The doctor says I have a lot of fluid (and pressure) built up in my middle ear. Time and several different medications should take care of the problem. Anyhoo...

Today I was attempting to rest on the couch while Eli ate breakfast and watched a bit of tv. When he finished eating, he asked me to pick a few pieces of oatmeal off of his pants, as usual.

And then he asked if I wanted to get tucked in under the blanket. Of course I let him! After he checked his work, making sure the blanket was tucked in around me completely, he brought his own beloved blankie over to me and draped it over me as well. As he smoothed his blankie down, he hummed a tune for me, rubbed my shoulder, and leaned over to give me a wet kiss. Finally, he asked me, "Are you all 'snugged in,' Mommy?"

I hope he stays sweet forever!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Gateway Word

So as I pull the car into the garage today, the door to the house opens and Eli's serious face appears.

"Mommy! I had a sort of 'crimpy' day today. They switch the tv shows! They had (now he starts pointing and counting on his fingers like he's ready to name his key speaking points) two 'Max and Ruby' shows and 2 'Dora the Explorer' shows. Isn't that strange?!"

He is obviously outraged by Nick Jr.'s ridiculous change in scheduled programming...but I can't help but ask him to repeat his first sentence.

"What kind of day did you have today? What did you say?"

"Oh," he responds with a sheepish grin, "That kind when things are a little bad. You know." And with that, Eli runs back into the house.

Are you thinking what I'm thinking? Yeah, I think he meant CRAPPY. And my fear is that: A. He learned that word from me (or my mom, who aptly taught ME the word when I was younger), and B. Crappy is only a "gateway word" to those other words that are known so well only by their initial letters.

All I can say right now is UH-OH!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Have Patience

Eli has finally figured out that it's COOL to sing in the car, just like Mommy does. :) It IS cool, right? Hmm. Anyway...

Grandma (my mom) bought him a cd of songs about kindness, caring, patience, get the point. It's actually a remake of a record (yes, I'm old enough to have experienced vinyl records) I had when I was 6 or 7 years old.

Oddly enough, I still remember most of the lyrics to the songs, especially the one about Herbert the Snail. This slow guy sings, "Have patience/ Have patience/ Don't be in such a hurry/ When you get impatient/ You only start to worry..."

So when we got stuck in a minor traffic jam out in Arizona, what song does Eli choose to belt out? Why of course, as Daddy is gripping the wheel and leaning forward (as if to will the car to move magically through the steady stream of traffic), Eli starts in with the "Have Patience" song. :)

Gotta love a 3-year old that can choose a song that fits the situation perfectly.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Wet Greeting

So we're back from our warm, sunny Arizona vacation. Boo! Here in Indiana, we were greeted with cold rain.

Today my husband took Eli to the car dealership for service/maintenance. While there, Eli kept mentioning (LOUDLY) that he missed Arizona. He then went on to say, "In Arizona it's sunny. In Indiana, it just rains!"

Preach it, Eli!

Later this evening, after being out in the drizzle once again, he muttered under his breath, "I miss Arizona..."

Me too, little man. Me too.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Ear Wax

Here's a short post, thanks to my "shorty," Eli.

This morning, while my husband and I were packing the suitcases and getting ready to head to the Phoenix airport, Eli was picking at his ear. At one point, Eli exclaimed, "I had some junk in my ear. It was an EAR WACK!"

Despite several attempts to explain the idea of ear WAX to Eli, he claimed that it was "an ear WACK, because it was only one."

The teacher in me really wanted to take the time to teach a mini lesson on singular vs. plural...but I resisted the temptation. He is only 3, you know.

Monday, March 7, 2011

End of the Arizona Trip

Our mini-vacation is coming to an end. We've definitely had some adventures over the last four days. Here are a few things I've learned on this trip:

-When Eli says he has to pee, and that he can't hold it...he is NOT joking.
-The only place where Eli will truly relax is on a lazy river at a water park.
-Eli can understand the lady's voice on the navigation/GPS system better than we can...and he repeats the directions pretty much every time.
-Japanese girls LOVE Eli. (They wouldn't stop ooh-ing and ah-ing over him at the Grand Canyon...)
-When Eli experiences something cool, he almost always says, "Whoa! Look at THIS!"

The unfortunate thing is...I just can't remember all of the silly yet insightful things my little guy has said over the last few days. I've been a bit too busy packing and repacking the backpack, organizing snacks, filling and refilling sippy cups, and holding hands with Eli to recall it all. Such is the life of a mom, I suppose.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Go Cubbies Go!

I am typing this post on my husband's toy...err, iPad, from a hotel room in Phoenix, Arizona. The three of us are on a mini-vacation with only two main objectives: see a Cubs spring training game (check!) and see the Grand Canyon (yet to be checked off the list).

Now Eli is a pretty big Cubs fan...for a three-year old. It might have something to do with being born into a family of Cubs fans. The fact that we painted his nursery/bedroom in official "Cubs red" paint and covered the walls with pictures of Wrigley Field may have been the clincher, though. Even the mobile that used to hang above the crib consisted of several bears dressed in complete Cubs uniforms. It also played "Take Me Out To the Ballgame." Yes, we really do love those Cubbies!

So today when we got to the ballpark in Mesa, Eli was pretty riled up and excited for the game to start. So intense was his enthusiasm, that he apparently could not contain his extreme love for the Cubs any longer. While walking the concourse, passing by countless food counters and shops, Eli spotted a fellow Cubs fan (a complete stranger, mind you), ran up, high-fived him, and yelled, "Go Cubbies, go!" The man was nice enough to put his hand up to accept the high-five...and really, who wouldn't want to high-five a cutie pie completely decked out in Cubs gear?

Tune in next time to hear all about our trip to the Grand Canyon!

Friday, March 4, 2011

A Secret Revealed

Just the other day, I was telling a friend that Eli has never tasted chocolate milk. He really doesn't even know that milk comes in any other flavor/color than white...and that's the way I would like to keep it.

Yet, as I type, we are watching a fairly high quality, educational program on television, and what's the topic? You guessed it! Chocolate and strawberry milk. Seriously? Ugh.

So I suppose it's a wake up call for me, right? God (and satellite television) is reminding me that I cannot guard and shelter him from everything "evil" and impure. I guess I was just hoping that he could wait and learn about flavored milk when he went to school...sort of like how I learned the "F" word when I started riding the bus to school.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Poop Talk

I'm not sure if it's because Eli's my first/only child, but I just don't ever get tired of listening to him speak (except for when he's whining, perhaps).

Today, after I went to work but before my husband left for the office, Eli informed him that he had to poop (see my earlier disclaimer if you're unhappy about my content/use of the word "poop"). Eli proceeded to run toward the bathroom, then stopped---and ran back to my husband. Eli gave him a very intense look and shouted out, "Daddy, sometimes when you gotta poop, you just need to get it done!" And with that profound statement, he ran off, back to the bathroom (where he did, in fact, poop).

When I arrived home from work, the first words out of my mom's (and full-time babysitter/dishwasher) mouth were, "Eli pooped 3 times today!" Nope, there's no escaping the daily poop talk. And believe me, I've tried.

Happy pooping, everyone!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Today I...

*woke up a bit late

*rubbed Eli's tummy and whispered, "Good morning. It's still early, go back to sleep," as he was beginning to wake up

*took a deep breath of Eli's toddler scent before leaving his still-dark room

*sang along (hoarse voice and all) with AC/DC and Foo Fighters songs on the way to school

*slid (and nearly fell) on the frosty ice patch in the school parking lot

*made coffee for myself and a friend/teacher ("freacher" :) )

*cherished my steaming hot, rich, black Starbucks coffee

*was reminded of a dear friend

*prayed silently

*wondered if I made the right decision

*took several deep breaths

*attempted to ease some test-taking anxiety (for my students AND myself)

*administered "THE TEST"

*read 2 Dr. Seuss books to my class

*challenged my students to accept (and continue) the SOL writing challenge

*tried to focus on all that is right and good, and to filter out the negativity and pessimism

*referred to myself as "a work in progress"

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Shorty Quotes

Life has been moving a bit too fast for me lately. I'm attempting to slow down and enjoy the small things in life. Thus, I am making this post short and (hopefully) sweet.

Here are a few recent quotes from Eli, the 3-year old cutie:

*"Thank you, Mommy, for making this dinner for me."

*"You gotta see this video on the iPad. It's CRAAAAZY!"

*"I gonna pitch for the Cubs!"

*"My tummy says, (in a very deep, grumbly voice) 'I need a green ice pop!'"

*When I said, "Wow, that's great," Eli replied (with the level of enthusiasm only a 3-year old can create), "I KNOW it is WOW, Mommy!"

*"So Puck is up in heaven with God? I KNOW Him!" :)

Even when life (especially work/school) gets tough, I always have this little guy to cherish when I finally get home. Thank goodness.