Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Catch up

Happy holidays! We here at the Shoup house hope you are having a wonderful holiday season. This Christmas season has been...eventful to say the least. I suppose it's been a perfect culmination of a year that has oftentimes been the perfect storm.

I have started my fancy gov'ment job in DC. Chantilly to DC is a pretty long haul, but the Loudoun County buses make my life tons easier. I even get naps twice a day! However, I have added commuting to my list of hobbies! The job is interesting with tons of unexpected perks. I've already met a quasi-famous political figure and take great joy in googling other big names that I hear. I'm sure I'll know what's going on by the time I retire in 30 years.

TIC is racing towards her third birthday. She's already head and shoulders above many of her classmates in height. Her legs have started to grow to match her torso and the result is a little girl who no longer looks like a toddler and more resembles a little girl. *sigh* Where did those three years go??

In the transition from baby *sob* to preschooler *shock and awe*, TIC has grown into typical little girl interests, despite my best intentions. My family and close friends will all tell you that when I found out I was having a girl, I was INSISTENT that there would be NO pink. Now, it's hard to find something that's NOT pink in her wardrobe!!! And the gifts for Christmas! PINK everywhere. And Barbie stuff too! Her favorite gifts were her Barbie Jeep and her Barbie vet set. She got a puppy in a bag that needs to be cared for. On Christmas morning, as she had her "puppy purse" in her pink Jeep, she looked like a tiny replica of Paris Hilton, sans suspicious "white powder".

TIC recently received a well loved pony replica. Mommy found it on freecycle and POUNCED! Miss Sarah gave Buttercup one of her pink and white dressage ribbons and TIC was over the moon. She rides her pony every day and loves it. I thought it was going to be a toy that was fun for like five minutes and then she'd be done. I was oh so wrong. So, I see some fur real pony rides in her future, for sure. Still waiting for her to decide hunter/jumper or dressage, but I'm trying to be patient. She's got at least another six months before she needs to decide. Who knows, with her love for Woody, she may surprise me and choose barrel racing. We are currently looking into schools where she can take her horse with her...*snicker* In all seriousness, Daddy is considering getting a saddle and bridle for this "toy pony." Nope, we ain't crazy in the Shoup house at all.

Looking forward to a quiet New Year's and a quiet 2011 for that matter. Minus that whole training for the Avon Two Day in Boston. I know, I know, I bring it all on myself. Wishing you a happy New Year as well! See ya in 2011!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Momma's little helper

I'm not sure the phases of childhood, honestly. TIC has pretty much always been independent or working towards her independence. What has been great recently, is her absolute willingness to help. We don't even have to ask for her help and she's right there helping us. Some of her new duties include letting the dogs in from the backyard, getting herself (partially) dressed in the mornings and putting her coat away. She may also assist in other duties as assigned.

The funny part (the part worth mentioning in the blog) is when she helps with the "big people" stuff. We hosted a bridal shower today and the whole famjam, plus my friend Jennie, got into the coordination of the event. Since we have five crazy dogs (whom I adore greatly) who don't always listen when we say "sunshinechiefgilliganwellietinogetofftheguestsrightnoworsohelpmeiwillbeatyouuntilyourchildrenareborndizzy", we tend to stash them in the garage with space heaters until the event is over. Since two dogs, who for the purposes of this blog shall be referred to as Havoc and Mayhem, love to spread death and destruction when unsupervised, this means being crated in the garage. Today, Brent was breaking down the crate to put into the garage. TIC, who is very familiar with the mechanics of this action (far too familiar for someone younger than the age of 9), said "Need help, Daddy? I help you!" Before Brent could even blink an eye, TIC was right there to help him with the heavy lifting. We do what EVERY parent does which is play right along with it. We let TIC think she's doing the heavy lifting (literally, in this case), while we really bear the brunt of the weight. The funny part is the grunts and groans that accompany her actions. Today's episode with the crate earned a "unh, ugh, grunt, groan, phew" from TIC. Then she dusted off her hands and said "I ready to go shopping, Mommy."

On another occasion, I was picking up a momma cat and her babies from the vet. When I made motion to pick up the crate, TIC said "No mommy turn, my turn!" I was willing to play along so I said "Okay, baby, let's take the kitties to the car." TIC put both hands on the handle, bent at the knees (good girl), attempted a squat lift and then looked at me and said "It's heavy, Mommy, you do it!" The form was excellent, the mechanics were willing, the strength...just not quite there yet.

Another thing that has come into play is the toddler logic. Unfortunately, the toddler logic is unshakable. I'm going to pose this dilemma to you and actively request feedback on how I can outsmart my child.
As I do every year, I purchased a new hat and gloves to go with TIC's new winter coat. Probably before it was appropriate, I asked her to put them on. She told me no. As it wasn't a big deal at the time, I let it ride. A week or so later, we took the hat and gloves to school. I told her that if she was going to play on the playground, she would need to wear the hat and gloves. TIC thought about this for a moment and said "I wear this hat, Mommy" and she put her hood on her head. Impressive! I said, "Okay, you can put your hood on and keep your head warm, but you'll have to wear your gloves to keep your hands warm." Without even THINKING about it, she said "I put my hands in my pockets, Mommy. No gloves." I was speechless. How can I complete with that logic?? Now, you may be thinking as I did, that this child SURELY will not be able to retain this logic. Alas, we would both be wrong as she has successfully applied the logic not only to her daddy, but her teachers at school too. You may think, as I did, that bribery would change the tide. I am here to tell you that I bribed her with a Dora balloon and was snubbed! SNUBBED! If a Dora balloon can't get her to put her hat and gloves on, then I ask you, what can???? Candy bar to the person with the successful suggestion!