Thursday Open Thread

Do you remember when you first grasped the concept of mortality?

I must have been about 6 or 7 years old when it hit me: someday, my parents would die. The realization was devastating, and I remember lying in bed, fighting back tears, and trying to chase away thoughts of a world without my parents in it. That is some deep, dark stuff for a child to grapple with!

So this viral video touched my heart. It features a 5-year-old girl crying her eyes out because she just realized that her baby brother won’t stay a baby — AND she’s going to die “when she’s a hundred.” And the baby? He just gurgles and smiles at her. OH, MY OVARIES.

I feel you, little girl. I SO feel you. That’s also kind of how I feel about my own kids growing up!

That said, if my child was bawling about her deepest fears, it wouldn’t occur to me to pick up a camera and record it. Not quite sure what the thought process was there!

What’s on your mind today? Chat away!

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Tuesday Open Thread

We visited the San Diego Zoo Safari Park this weekend and got a behind-the-scenes tour, thanks to my BIL, who is a donor. We were among the first visitors to see a lioness and her four 1-month-old cubs. They were nursing and toddling around and she was grooming them and SQUEE!!! So cute.

Then we saw this:

10556238_10101068931255494_2332324762942573064_nA 12-week-old cheetah is being raised alongside a 13-week-old Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy. Mama rejected the cheetah, so the puppy will be its lifelong companion. I think my  ovaries might have exploded.

What has given you the warm fuzzies lately? What else is on your mind? Chat away!

 

 

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Weekend Open Thread

I did not read Fifty Shades of Grey, but I couldn’t resist watching the trailer, as it was all over my facebook feed. I described it later to my DH, chuckling at how the female lead is presented as mousy and meek.

“You know, because she’s wearing a drab sweater and has bad bangs,” I said.

So I was roaring with laughter the next day, when I saw this think piece on the cardigan sweater or: How To Make A Beautiful Actress Less Beautiful.

The cardigan sweater/bad bangs combo is second only to the librarian glasses/hair in a bun combo. ACTING!

Which movies have you enjoyed lately? Which ones are you looking forward to?

What else is up this weekend? Chat away!

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Thursday Open Thread

How do you keep your kids’ minds engaged during their summer break?

I remember months of boredom as a kid. Yes, I played outside, but it got hot. There was a lot of TV watching. And after a while, I looked forward to going back to school, just so I would actually have something to do and someplace to go.

So I try to avoid boredom for my own kiddos, especially DD. She is hyper curious and engaged, so she has had various day camps. I also buy her the Scholastic Summer Express workbooks, in hopes of helping her retain what she learned. She also has a weekly piano lesson and the occasional play date.

There is also a fair amount of iPad time, and video game playing. Today DD asked, “Mami, can we watch Property Brothers tomorrow?” She is delightful.

What’s on tap for these waning days of summer? Chat away!

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Tuesday Open Thread

Weird Al is back!

He released eight videos in eight days and created quite a buzz. He was relevant when I was 9, and he’s relevant now that I’m 39. Gotta love it!

I found myself playing his videos for my 16-year-old niece and giving her context about who the heck he is. She giggled at his takes on Pharell’s “Happy” and Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines.”

But my all-time favorite Weird Al song? Amish Paradise. What’s yours?

What’s on your mind today? Chat away!

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Tuesday Open Thread

Apologies for the late thread! Insomnia is still kicking our butts, plus all the sightseeing with our niece has run me ragged and I plum forgot.

But, we have had a blast! Yesterday we closed down Universal Studios. Today, the beach (if this cloud cover goes away). Tomorrow we say goodbye. My niece is the kind of kid who gives me hope that my kids’ teen years might actually be pleasant. She is a delight.

How are you today?

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Weekend Open Thread

After two nights of decent sleep, we hit another bump in the road on the Insomnia Highway of Suckage. For some reason DD insists on lying in the dark, trying to force sleep, until she drives herself to tears of despair and frustration. The night before last it climaxed with her literally screaming and wailing, “WHY CAN’T I SLEEP?!” at 12:30 a.m., waking DH, me, and our visiting niece (but not DS, thankfully).

Well, we hit our limit, so to speak. We made it VERY clear that there would be no more Benadryl, no more warm milk, no more babying. She is to turn on a light and read until she is tired and ready to sleep, even if it takes an hour or two. So that’s what she did last night after her freak out: read for a while, then fell asleep. LIKE I’VE BEEN TELLING HER ALL ALONG.

Our niece said she had an insomnia spell at this exact age, the summer between 3rd and 4th grades. She read books, and eventually it passed. I hope the same will happen for DD but if it doesn’t, then we will seek a therapist to help her learn how to cope. ‘Cause AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR THIS.

On the bright side, we are having a lovely visit with our niece. We took her to a new Mythbusters exhibit at a local science museum, and she got to meet Kari from the show! I also accompanied her on a tour at a lovely local university, and it made me sorta look forward to doing it with my own children someday.

Yesterday we saw the space shuttle Endeavour, walked through the Exposition Park Rose Gardens and strolled down Olvera Street. For a grand finale we hit an amazing food truck fest. I have a tendency to tire my visitors out, but there is so much to see and do that I like to squeeze in as much as I can. Hee.

Today we will take a tour of the Warner Brothers studios, because my delightful niece is a Friends geek and she wants to see the Central Perk set. How adorable is that?!

What do you like to do with visitors? Are there any local activities or attractions that you always include?

What are you up to this fine weekend? Chat away!

 

 

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Thursday Open Thread

Hello! Thanks so much for your kindness and concern as we’ve navigated this insomnia thing with DD9. I’m happy to report that the night before last, it took her less than an hour to fall asleep, and she slept through the night. THANK YOU, Benadryl!

It’s just past midnight as I write this and I have yet to hear her stir, so I am hoping and praying tonight was as successful. We repeated the Benadryl, plus I gave her a little foot rub with some lavender oil, as advised by a few different facebook friends.

If all goes well, we will cut the Benadryl dose in half, then discontinue it altogether. I will say that in many ways it felt like having a newborn again- interrupted sleep, never knowing when she’d stir, listening for the littlest noise. But scarier because newborns are supposed to wake up. Having my normally solid sleeper go through this was unnerving, to say the least.

We also removed the digital clock from her room, as I am convinced that watching the hours go by was only making her feel more helpless and frustrated. And it’s nice to know her pediatrician is in the loop, should this problem recur. Did I mention she gave us her mobile number and told us to text her any time? I love that woman.

Today our 15-year-old niece arrives from Connecticut for a week-long visit. We plan to do lots of sightseeing and sunning, and will even visit a nearby college. I still remember her as a newborn, and now she’s going to be a junior in high school. Should be a fun little preview of DD’s teen years. Our niece is the type of kid that makes me look forward to having a teen!

What are you up to? Chat away!

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