Monday, December 22, 2008

A recent Nora-ism

Nora has been speaking out against affectionate nicknames recently. Hardly a day goes past when she reminds me, "I'm Nora!"

It usually goes something like this. We'll be in the car and,

Nora: Mommy, I want a snack!
Me: It's almost time for lunch.
Nora: I want a snack!
Me: Babe, we'll be home in just a minute.
Nora: I not babe, I'm Nora!

We also have a little game we like to play. Since she's been very little, I've called her my "Bits." I started out calling her "Little Bit," but that wasn't right, so the nickname evolved and had several incarnations before we settled on Bits or the Bits. It sounds really cheesy when I type it out, but aren't most nicknames are like that?

Me: Are you my pits?
Nora: No!
Me: Are you my spits?
Nora: No!
Me: My bots? Spots? Pots? Are you my knits?
Nora: No! I your Bits!

From what I gather, it's okay to call her Bits, but she's not too crazy about honey, sweetie, baby, etc. I'll try to keep that in mind.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


We can't believe it, but it's time to think about preschool. We want to start Nora at 3, and since her birthday is in August, she'll be starting right before or after her third birthday. The ones around here do tours and open houses in January and enroll in February, so that means we will be doing some shopping around in the next month or so. There's also a question of waiting lists and things like that, but I'm not worried about that right now.

These are a few of the ones we want to consider.

The Children's Garden

Druid Hills United Methodist Preschool
First Decatur United Methodist Preschool
Preschool at the Heights

A couple of them sound more interesting to me than others, but I'm really getting ahead of myself because I know I'll learn so much from attending the open houses and meeting the teachers, etc. Jason doesn't have much of an opinion on it at all right now but knowing us I see a comparison spreadsheet in our future.

There is a part of me that is really excited about this for Nora. Even 9 months before fall 2009 I can predict that she will thrive in a school setting. On the other hand, it feels like she's growing up so fast. I regret that she will always be one of if not the youngest in her class (thinking ahead to elementary school and beyond now), but that's just where her birthday falls. As for starting her in preschool at 3, that seems the natural thing to do to me as my sister and I both started at that age and it seems like the trend in Atlanta is to start children even earlier, at 2. In the end I'm sure it will all work out fine. I have to say, it makes me feel very "parental" to be facing these kind of decisions. I know I make parental decisons all day every day, but choosing a school for my child just seems so much bigger than choosing what vegetables she'll be having with her dinner.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

Yep, looks a lot like Christmas around here. Good thing since it's less than a week away. How did this happen? I swear it crept up on me even faster than usual this year, even though I did most of my shopping over a month ago. We've had about a dozen unopened UPS packages sitting on our guest bed for weeks now. This week I've been opening the boxes, sorting what's what (I had to consult my list as I'd forgotten what I bought for some people!) and wrapping things. The good news about waiting this long to wrap is that, if you go to Party City, they have adorable gift bags and they're 50% off. The bad news is that I have company coming to town in four days and let's just say there's a lot to get done between now and then. Wrapping is probably the least of it.

I even braved Ikea and Target today to pick up "a few last minute items," which turned into a shopping spree the likes of which I have never seen before. Seriously, I don't think I have ever seen a total as high as my total at Target today, outside of purchasing major appliances. Needless to say, we are very grateful to be able to afford to buy gifts for all of our friends and family, especially knowing how so many others are struggling this year. We feel very, very blessed to have such a happy and healthy family.

On tap for this week: church tomorrow (Jason playing the Christmas cantata), though Nora and I might stay home because she was sick today, we'll see; wrapping galore; massive planning and shopping for Christmas dinner; hosting some friends for dinner Monday night; Christmas Eve services and dinner with my parents Wednesday night; Thursday is Christmas! Woohoo! Oh, and I may have to take Nora in to the pediatrician because of her illness. I suspect an ear infection. Somehow in all of this we would still like to do the Pink Pig, and I really want to take Nora to skate at Centennial Olympic Park, although I'm not sure how that will work since neither one of us is much of an ice skater. I mean, I'll get out there and give it a go, I just don't know how much help I will be to Nora when she needs it. We're heading to Pensacola Saturday or Sunday, I'm not sure which yet, but we're looking forward to seeing everyone there.

Ho ho ho! See most of you soon!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Visit to Santa

As you can see by the above picture, we saw Santa today! I'd meant to do this for the past two years, but this is the first time I actually made it happen. It's just as well. This is the first year she cared a bit about Santa/Christmas/etc.

Today was not a typical day for us. I want to say that because I'm about to tell about our visit to Santa and it was really out of character for Nora. She is usually really good natured and LOVES strangers. So much so that it scares me sometimes. I always worry that she would happily walk off with someone she had never met before. Since she has become 2 she has become a little more cautious/clingy, which is not a bad thing in my opinion.

This morning she woke up on the wrong side of the bed, so to speak. We had Music Class this morning and it was a big struggle to get out the door. A tantrum was involved. She did okay at Music Class and at lunch (mostly), but when it was time to see Santa I asked her if she wanted to meet him and she said, "No!" This was when we were at the mall and not even near Santa yet. I was really surprised because we'd been talking about Santa and how he brings presents and toys. We just set up the Christmas tree last night and she was totally digging it.

Even though she said she didn't want to meet Santa, I took him to his "workshop" anyway. No one else was around and the man working was really sweet. He waved to her from his couch, then he came down and talked to her from behind the rope. He asked her what she wanted for Christmas and she said, "Presents, with wrapping paper," which is her standard answer. She's not too concerned about what kind of presents she gets as long as they involve wrapping paper. He gave her some stickers, then Santa showed us some of his set-up. He pointed out a dog and a kitty that were part of the display. Nora liked that.

After she got comfortable, she agreed to sit on Santa's lap for a little bit and we got some pictures. I was happy with how they turned out and I also shelled out for a frame, which I will keep and use every year. We don't decorate much but Nora seems to enjoy the things we do do. It's so nice to experience all of the joy of the holiday through the eyes of a two year old.

So, I don't know what was up with Miss Nora today, but we survived our visit to Santa and we got a nice picture out of it. We also took her to a drive-around light show tonight and she LOVED it.

Merry Christmas to all!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Another week is gone....

The weeks go by so quickly. There are a bunch of friends I keep meaning to make plans with. We still have to put up the Christmas tree. We want to take Nora to ride on the Pink Pig at Lenox Mall (an Atlanta holiday tradition) and to see Santa Claus, and to get some pictures made in one of her holiday dresses.... I need to make a list or something.

We're home sick from church this morning. I was looking forward to a few things that were happening this morning and I ended up missing those things. Nora and I had a stomach bug yesterday that also kept us home from a Christmas party we had been planning to attend. Bummer. With luck we'll both be feeling better by tomorrow and we can have a normal, productive week.

We got a new neighbor this week! We're very excited about this because the house, which is right next door to us (as well as several other houses in our general vicinity), has been empty the entire three years we've lived here. I met the guy who is moving in and he seems really nice. He bought the house for a song and I think he got an amazing deal considering the fact that it's about the same size as our house and, like ours, has been recently renovated. (It's also rather depressing to think about what his amazing deal does for our home value, but let's be like Scarlett O'Hara and think about that another day.) We also have new neighbors (renters, I think) across the street that I haven't met yet, and another recently renovated house that may be occupied soon. I'm feeling really optimistic about all of this. We had hoped to be in another house and another neighborhood by now, but with the market the way it is I think we'll be here another couple of years, at least. Our neighborhood association seems to finally be getting legs and that's a really positive thing, too.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Goodbye, November!

I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving! We had a great time in Pensacola. We got to see a lot of people, although as always there were a few we missed, and we stayed very busy. We went to two Thanksgiving dinners on Thursday and did only a little bit of shopping on Friday. We also celebrated Jason's 31st birthday with an ice cream cake from Marble Slab. It was weird! 90% ice cream and 10% cake.

The next month is definitely going to be busy. We're almost done purchasing Christmas presents, but we have a lot to do around the house, a few holiday get-togethers to attend, baking to do, and planning for our Christmas dinner which we'll be hosting for the first time ever. I've done Thanksgiving here before, but never Christmas. Of course I had help before and I'll have it again (my mom and sister will be here), but still! Planning to be done!

We told Nora about Santa Claus, so she is vaguely excited about this whole Christmas thing, although she has no idea what to expect. It's fun to see her work it all out in her head.