Monday, September 25, 2006

Quirky Tenley

So as Tenley is getting older her little quirks are really starting to crack me up.

Example #1: Tenley received an American Girl “Bitty Baby” for her birthday from Scott, Gaynor, Lauren and Amanda. I’ve never seen her show much interest in a baby doll before but when I opened the package she oohed and aaahhed over it. Once the package was opened her face lit up and screamed “Baby!” She immediately grabbed the doll and started hugging it and talking to it. The very best part of this is that this doll is the kind where the eyes close when it lays down to simulate sleep. As the doll is lying on its blanket, Tenley runs by and yells “Wake Up Baby!” She continues yelling at the baby to wake up until I finish laughing and tell her she needs to pick up the baby to watch it wake up. She does this with the joy and glee that only a 2-year old can have. She giggles, drops the baby and runs away only to come back five minutes later yelling for the baby to wake up. She is hysterical!

Example #2: I take Tenley to the park and run off some of her excess energy. This seems to work quite nicely most nights. Tonight on the play structure she ran from one side to the other crossing two bridges in the process. On the way by me she will stop, wave and say “Bye-bye, nice time!” Off she goes for another round each time doing the same thing. I think it’s very polite that she is telling me she had a nice time. When she says bye-bye I ask her where she is going and each time the answer is different. Sometimes she is going home, sometimes she is going to the store, and sometimes she is going to the mall. Tonight for the first time she told me she was going to Arizona. Not sure where she heard that word but she said it quite clearly two or three times. By this time I am laughing uncontrollably. To the odd passer by I must look like a total idiot standing around a kids park laughing my head off.

The rest of her strange quirks are all typical little kid things like she hates having sand in her shoes and insists on taking them off to clean them off while still in the sandbox. Never mind that she just finished pulling her waistband out and dumping handfuls of sand down her pants, sand in the shoes is totally unacceptable.

I watched her pull apart a leaf tonight for the better part of 15 minutes. She would examine each piece and talk to it before she cast it aside in favor of the next shred of leaf.

She found a stick on the ground and walked around waving it in the air and when I asked her what she was doing and she said she was drawing clouds in the sky.

By this time it was dark and I was all laughed out so we went back to the car. As soon as the door was opened she yelled “Hi” to George who was waiting patiently in the car for us to return. All the way home she told George all about bridges and swinging and playing in the sand.

She is the most amazing little person I have ever seen. She has so much intelligence and energy and it all comes out in the funniest ways!

Thursday, September 14, 2006


Wow-amazing how fast a year goes! On this day last year I was on a plane headed home from DC with Meg…and Tenley was at home with Daddy trying to walk and turning 1.

Today Tenley is 2. She can not only walk, but she can run and throw herself onto the floor in a kicking flailing temper-tantrum like a proper two year old. She’s adding to her vocabulary daily, and starting to string 2 or 3 words together. Some times this is good (ie. “Apple juice please”) and sometimes this is not so good (“no share- mine!”). She remains happily obsessed with Elmo who has taught her to count to 10…although she sometimes gets lost around 7 or 8. More personality emerges and I marvel at what a bruiser she still is, and yet is already showing the very girly girl characteristics of enjoying shoes, shopping and handbags. Interest is starting to show in things like potty training and in making choices for herself (ie. red glitter ruby slippers must be worn with everything). There are moments where I am just stunned at what a little girl she's become. I look at the pictures from her first birthday party and I laugh- it's hard to believe that it's the same child. She's just changed and developed so much in this last year. My favourite things are how affectionate she's become, and that she now calls me "mommy".

We started this years birthday by getting up late and having breakfast during Jack’s Big Music Show while Ten demonstrated that she has learned what to do with wrapped presents by quickly revealing the 2 cute outfits that Aunty Jen & Uncle Todd sent her.

Then we met up with Kim & Ten’s best buddy Jaxon at Victoria Gardens. We started with lunch at Lucielle’s BBQ. We made a quick trip to Ulta for hairpins & conditioner, and then I introduced Kim to the Lucy ( store. I love Lucy because it has stylish comfy active wear - perfect for moms. We were the only customers at the time, so we let the kids happily run amok through the dressing rooms while we scoured the sales racks.

After a quick stop at the potty rooms, we turned the kids loose in the fountain where they ran, laughed and splashed as they explored the water and got thoroughly soaked. When they had had enough, we dried them off & headed for home.

Tenley and I finally got home, and Jeff and I decided that Rainforest CafĂ© was a good spot for a 2 year old’s birthday dinner. We requested a table by the fish because like all good toddlers, Tenley is fascinated with fish. Sure enough, the fish and animatronic animals were a hit, a cheese pizza was devoured, and Tenley was serenaded by 6 guys in safari outfits who came bearing ice cream.

The mall the restaurant was located in was deserted, so we let her run as fast as her little legs would carry her for awhile; but when we saw the Build a Bear store we caught her & turned her around before we were forced to buy more clothes for George the Cross-dressing Giraffe (Grandma Suzie just bought him shoes, rollerskates, and a leash so Ten can now tow him around). Jeff finally managed to herd her out the door and then we went home to watch the Wiggles before it was bedtime.

It may not sound exciting to us grown-ups, but to a two year old it was a heck of a day.

Happy 2nd Birthday Tenster!
Mommy & Daddy love you.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Shopping With Tenley

When shopping with Tenley at the local Target, its best to let her do her own thing.....

Here Tenley has chosen a large purse to carry around while reading a Little Mermaid book.

Yesterday Tenley chose an orange backpack to wear around the store.

However, the backpack was not enough and she needed a matching football to help her on her shopping trip.

I've found that if you let her indulge herself a little, the shopping trip will go much smoother. The other side effect is that since her hands are full she has no room to reach out and grab items off the shelf. Plus she's really cute!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Sticker Fun

This is what happens when a toddler gets a hold of post-it stickers...

Saturday, September 02, 2006

White Trash Child

The other day while Michelle was at work Tenley and I went to Target to pick up a few things. The first problem I did not really notice was that Tenley had a runny nose and was wiping it all over her arm, hands and shirt. Then there was the crying fit she had about being in the car seat again. By the time we got to Target she was a mess. Still, being a dad, I didn’t really notice.

Upon entering Target the first thing that Tenley did was start asking for popcorn and an Icee. Michelle had told me recently that for a dollar you get a small bag of popcorn and a small drink. She had been getting that for Tenley while they shopped. I thought that was a good idea and went over to the food area. Unfortunately there was quite a long line and Tenley, not being the patient type, started crying again. This produced more tears and runny nose which once again was being wiped everywhere but the Kleenex I had.

After we got our popcorn and drink we started our shopping trip. Up and down the aisles Tenley was spilling her drink and wiping her runny nose all over her shirt. Once again Daddy was not really paying that much attention. She was quiet and there was popcorn…what else did I need to know? Somewhere along the way she managed to get something black all over her shirt as well.

Pretty soon the popcorn lost its appeal, the drink was gone and Tenley was walking on her own through Target. Soon enough the crying began again because she didn’t get the Thomas the Train Backpack that cost $25 and was the same size as she is. As the wailing began in earnest, my eyes were opened and all of a sudden I had a white trash baby in Target. She was beyond dirty, snotty, food on her face and in her hair which was half out of its pony tails and standing on end. She had an overall look of neglect about her, like I had shopped at the nearest Goodwill store for her second hand clothes and never bothered to bathe her.

Instantly I became the parent that I used to look at and sneer “Why don’t they take better care of that child. I would never go out in public like that!” I grabbed her, ran to the nearest cashier and paid for the few items I had and raced out of there before anyone had the chance to judge me a bad parent.

Yikes, things are different when the white trash child is your own!