December 21, 2006


It is a girl!

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Thursday, December 21, 2006
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December 14, 2006

Last week I bought a pair of gloves. Nice ones, genuine leather outside and cashmere inside. They fitted snugly and warmly. I was quite happy. I have been without gloves for years. Then two days later I lost them. Maybe on the train or on the street. Well, back to my glove-less days. On that note, I also lack any accessories, like scarf, hat, or jewelry, like earrings or necklace. Too much trouble, bound to be lost.

My father says I am not suitable to be a thief, because I always leave a trail of things, money, purse, keys, ... behind me. Always absentminded, I would forget that in my hand I am holding a purse. Very often I forget to close my backpack and things just spill over.

Emma seems to be like me. She forgets things all the time. I bought her hair clips, she lost them in two days; She loved her colorful necklaces, but soon enough they were nowhere to be seen. She wanted to be a big girl to have keys, just like we adults. So I gave her a key with a small key chain. Sure, the key disappeared. Maybe somewhere in the playground. Whenever she cannot find anything, she asks me: "Mommy, where is my ..."

So forgetful. Or maybe she is just too young.

So forgetful

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Last week I bought a pair of gloves. Nice ones, genuine leather outside and cashmere inside. They fitted snugly and warmly. I was quite happy. I have been without gloves for years. Then two days later I lost them. Maybe on the train or on the street. Well, back to my glove-less days. On that note, I also lack any accessories, like scarf, hat, or jewelry, like earrings or necklace. Too much trouble, bound to be lost.

My father says I am not suitable to be a thief, because I always leave a trail of things, money, purse, keys, ... behind me. Always absentminded, I would forget that in my hand I am holding a purse. Very often I forget to close my backpack and things just spill over.

Emma seems to be like me. She forgets things all the time. I bought her hair clips, she lost them in two days; She loved her colorful necklaces, but soon enough they were nowhere to be seen. She wanted to be a big girl to have keys, just like we adults. So I gave her a key with a small key chain. Sure, the key disappeared. Maybe somewhere in the playground. Whenever she cannot find anything, she asks me: "Mommy, where is my ..."

So forgetful. Or maybe she is just too young.

Thursday, December 14, 2006
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December 12, 2006

If you see it rains, thunders, snows, will you ask why, or wonder, or think for a second? No. I never. But Emma does. Her questions come often and natural, about nature, about animals, people, everything.

Yesterday, she asked "Why did it rain but not thunder?" I did not think of an appropriate answer, and did not want to cheat my way out, so I promised to look it up for her (today I googled it, found a lot of "rain, thunder, snow" music, video stuff. No one cares why it rains or thunders.)

Later, on our way home, Emma came up with her own answer. She said: "Oh, there are people, they drum, drum and drum, then there is thunder."

Very cute.

Her questions spring up when we read books, watch movies. They always remind me how utterly ignorant I am about the world.

Last night, we were reading an Eric Carle's book about Sea horse. Mommy sea horse lays eggs in the pouch of a daddy sea horse, then daddy swims away and mommy sea horse disappear from the book.

She asked me: "Where is the mommy?"

I said: "She leaves"

"Why?"

I had no idea. Still I said "She goes out to look for food." I was trying to mirror my answer from little penguins' behavior.

"Does mommy get tummy ache when she lay eggs, like you (having a baby)?"

Who knows?

Why it rains?

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If you see it rains, thunders, snows, will you ask why, or wonder, or think for a second? No. I never. But Emma does. Her questions come often and natural, about nature, about animals, people, everything.

Yesterday, she asked "Why did it rain but not thunder?" I did not think of an appropriate answer, and did not want to cheat my way out, so I promised to look it up for her (today I googled it, found a lot of "rain, thunder, snow" music, video stuff. No one cares why it rains or thunders.)

Later, on our way home, Emma came up with her own answer. She said: "Oh, there are people, they drum, drum and drum, then there is thunder."

Very cute.

Her questions spring up when we read books, watch movies. They always remind me how utterly ignorant I am about the world.

Last night, we were reading an Eric Carle's book about Sea horse. Mommy sea horse lays eggs in the pouch of a daddy sea horse, then daddy swims away and mommy sea horse disappear from the book.

She asked me: "Where is the mommy?"

I said: "She leaves"

"Why?"

I had no idea. Still I said "She goes out to look for food." I was trying to mirror my answer from little penguins' behavior.

"Does mommy get tummy ache when she lay eggs, like you (having a baby)?"

Who knows?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006
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December 11, 2006

Emma is 3 years and 2 moths old. My sister said: "In China, when a child turns into 3, the parents would take care to send them to various programs, like art, music, dancing, sports, blah, blah ..."

I know. There are so many programs for preschoolers that are easily accessible and generally affordable. My nephew went to a few in a row after he turned 3 (he can draw a little bit, is good at basketball and football. However and unfortunately, he is incorrigibly obsessed with Video games. He is wild and unruly, a huge headache for his parents and grandparents. Well that is another topic). I, too, want Emma to receive some early exposure to arts, music and acrobatics too. Who knows? She might cultivate some lifetime passion because of that, or at least a hobby.

Easier said than done. As always, three obstacles: time, distance and money.

Time-wise, I work full time and she goes to school full time, while a lot of programs are offered on weekdays. For the few that have Saturdays as an option, some of them are set at afternoon time like 2 or 3pm. Bomber.

Then distance. This is such a car-for-granted nation. However, I do not have a car to use on Saturdays (the only days that work for me). And I dread riding train or bus, or using a combination of both and then walking another extra 5 blocks. Why I blindly chose to live on the northern edge of city?

Then money, money, money. There are cheap ones, the ones offered nearly free by city park district programs. But there are more likely expensive ones, private for profit ones. I do not know why in US, child care constantly causes monetary concerns, especially for one like me who is just dangling above the lowest ladder of middle class, not poor enough to be eligible for financial assistance, yet far from rich not to feel the burden of good child care. (Then next year, I will doubly burdened.)

How I want to send Emma to a Montessori school! Or freely relocate to a good place where good schools are guaranteed. No luck in at least 5 years, probably.

Read somewhere, someone says in a sense, you feel much more secure in China. True. Very True.

Three obstacles to a preschool program

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Emma is 3 years and 2 moths old. My sister said: "In China, when a child turns into 3, the parents would take care to send them to various programs, like art, music, dancing, sports, blah, blah ..."

I know. There are so many programs for preschoolers that are easily accessible and generally affordable. My nephew went to a few in a row after he turned 3 (he can draw a little bit, is good at basketball and football. However and unfortunately, he is incorrigibly obsessed with Video games. He is wild and unruly, a huge headache for his parents and grandparents. Well that is another topic). I, too, want Emma to receive some early exposure to arts, music and acrobatics too. Who knows? She might cultivate some lifetime passion because of that, or at least a hobby.

Easier said than done. As always, three obstacles: time, distance and money.

Time-wise, I work full time and she goes to school full time, while a lot of programs are offered on weekdays. For the few that have Saturdays as an option, some of them are set at afternoon time like 2 or 3pm. Bomber.

Then distance. This is such a car-for-granted nation. However, I do not have a car to use on Saturdays (the only days that work for me). And I dread riding train or bus, or using a combination of both and then walking another extra 5 blocks. Why I blindly chose to live on the northern edge of city?

Then money, money, money. There are cheap ones, the ones offered nearly free by city park district programs. But there are more likely expensive ones, private for profit ones. I do not know why in US, child care constantly causes monetary concerns, especially for one like me who is just dangling above the lowest ladder of middle class, not poor enough to be eligible for financial assistance, yet far from rich not to feel the burden of good child care. (Then next year, I will doubly burdened.)

How I want to send Emma to a Montessori school! Or freely relocate to a good place where good schools are guaranteed. No luck in at least 5 years, probably.

Read somewhere, someone says in a sense, you feel much more secure in China. True. Very True.

Monday, December 11, 2006
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December 04, 2006

December is coming. We got our first snow. So big, so heavy, it lasted so long. And it was so cold.

Saturday, Emma and I took a little shopping trip to the Dominick's about 4 blocks away. She loved it, the icy-cold air, the snowy trees and slippery sidewalk. Every two minutes, she stopped to see the snow-covered houses and trees, the hurriedly flying-away birds (she trid to chase them or running away from them). Winds blew over. Small icicles fell off the trees and landed on our shoulders, arms and heads. She was both scared and thrilled. She wanted more flurries of ice falling. Every two minutes, she stopped to crush off or kick away a block of ice, or she stamped stone-hard snow/ice trying to determine if it was ice or snow. She asked me, I did not know. Part of the sidewalk was still snow-covered, quite slippery. She walked gingerly over, screaming, complaining, while I stood 20 feet away, laughing and waiting for her.

Too bad, my camera is broken. And I have no idea when I would care enough to replace it.

Last night, after a cup of milk, I threw up everything I had taken that evening. Standing next to me on a little step stool, Emma gently patted me on the back. When I was finally done, she said: "Mommy, I will take care of you."

She has said this many times. In the beginning, I thought she was just parroting. But then I think she means it. Yesterday, looking at me earnestly, she said again, "Mommy, I will take care of you. I will not take care of daddy."

...

I take side too throughout the years I grew up, away from and then close to my parents again. Emma takes side, too, even when she was much younger. I never intended it, however, ...

Then Emma had more questions and comments, all in Chinese.

"Mommy, why you threw up?"

"I do not know. Maybe it was because of the baby in my tummy."

"Why the baby made you so?"

"Oh, maybe the baby did some somersault then made me sick. When you were in my tummy, I sometimes threw up too."

"Ah. Mommy, when I become a Mommy, I have a baby in my tummy, I will throw up too, because I do not want you to throw up."

I love her so.

Why it is so easy to love your child, but it is not so easy to love your spouse? Why? Because my child is just so good, so tender, so easy to love.

So easy to love

Posted by Xun  |  1 comment

December is coming. We got our first snow. So big, so heavy, it lasted so long. And it was so cold.

Saturday, Emma and I took a little shopping trip to the Dominick's about 4 blocks away. She loved it, the icy-cold air, the snowy trees and slippery sidewalk. Every two minutes, she stopped to see the snow-covered houses and trees, the hurriedly flying-away birds (she trid to chase them or running away from them). Winds blew over. Small icicles fell off the trees and landed on our shoulders, arms and heads. She was both scared and thrilled. She wanted more flurries of ice falling. Every two minutes, she stopped to crush off or kick away a block of ice, or she stamped stone-hard snow/ice trying to determine if it was ice or snow. She asked me, I did not know. Part of the sidewalk was still snow-covered, quite slippery. She walked gingerly over, screaming, complaining, while I stood 20 feet away, laughing and waiting for her.

Too bad, my camera is broken. And I have no idea when I would care enough to replace it.

Last night, after a cup of milk, I threw up everything I had taken that evening. Standing next to me on a little step stool, Emma gently patted me on the back. When I was finally done, she said: "Mommy, I will take care of you."

She has said this many times. In the beginning, I thought she was just parroting. But then I think she means it. Yesterday, looking at me earnestly, she said again, "Mommy, I will take care of you. I will not take care of daddy."

...

I take side too throughout the years I grew up, away from and then close to my parents again. Emma takes side, too, even when she was much younger. I never intended it, however, ...

Then Emma had more questions and comments, all in Chinese.

"Mommy, why you threw up?"

"I do not know. Maybe it was because of the baby in my tummy."

"Why the baby made you so?"

"Oh, maybe the baby did some somersault then made me sick. When you were in my tummy, I sometimes threw up too."

"Ah. Mommy, when I become a Mommy, I have a baby in my tummy, I will throw up too, because I do not want you to throw up."

I love her so.

Why it is so easy to love your child, but it is not so easy to love your spouse? Why? Because my child is just so good, so tender, so easy to love.

Monday, December 04, 2006
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