The Weekly Peanut, Issue 103
The time: 6 a.m. The place: my bed.
*groaning* Yes, Peanut?
"SHHHHHHH! DADDY SLEEPING!!"
Courteous, isn't she? Oh, how I miss the days of the 7 a.m. wake-up call, now that it keeps inching closer to 6 a.m.
D showed a lot of progress this week, both socially and developmentally. Except when it comes to potty training. Notice I haven't mentioned it in a while? That's because it has become entirely stagnant at home. If I ask her if she needs to go potty she will always say no; if I drag her into the potty anyway, she will scream at me that she "no can't potty" even as she is going potty into the toilet. Day care gave me some guilt about it, since she's "doing so well" with the potty there, so Saturday I decided to try another commando day. It started out great, I took D to the potty every hour, she'd pee, she'd get a sticker, and I was feeling pretty good about it.
Then it was lunch time. Suddenly D looks up at me, "Mommy, it's WARM!" as she frantically points at her crotch. Sure enough, pee. Pee everywhere. Not a trickle but a roar. How? How can there be that much pee in you when you just went less than an hour ago? Tuesday night Ian came home with a diaper-less Daphne and a look of determination on his face. He took her into the bathroom. Lots of shouting and hollering commenced. Even as she was peeing, she continued to holler at me about how she couldn't. We clapped for her "Yay, D, a sticker!" still screaming. Finally my brain conjured up a memory of someone suggesting using M&Ms for potty rewards. "D, would you like a piece of chocolate?" Screaming stops. "If you make pee or poo on the potty, you can have a piece of chocolate..." *sniffffff* OKAYYYY. D went on to make FOUR pees in the potty in the 90 minutes between bedtime and bath with minimal (or reduced would be more accurate) fussing. Alright then. Let's see if the chocolate incentive works long term, eh?
We've also been trying to push D to branch out food-wise. She asks to eat macaroni and cheese for dinner every night, which isn't going to fly. We were both bowled over when she raided Ian's vietnamese Bun salad, particularly when I had to stop her from guzzling the Fish Sauce dressing. Whaaaa? Then at Smokey Bones she kept stealing Ian's barbecue chicken. She even ate a few "little trees" (broccoli) in between chicken bites.
I may or may not have been watching a RuPaul Drag Race marathon one of the evenings Ian brought D home from school. She may or may not be picking up some Drag Queen behaviors...
I am happy to report that after many growth spurts, D FINALLY fits into her Mulan dress without it dragging on the ground. She was ECSTATIC. I plugged in the movie for her and she continued to bowl me over by singing EVERY. SINGLE. WORD. of Reflection. Even the verses. Granted, it is a shorter song, but she was actually more accurate with the lyrics than with Let It Go. Whoa.
Saturday we got a visit from Ian's cousin, David. D has met David once or twice, but it has been a long time. She totally bowled me over by being very friendly and open with him almost from the first minute he walked in the door. This marks another gradual shift in D, particularly among new males, to be a little more friendly. Surely, redemption with some Disney Princes can't be far behind?
Speaking of singing, D is doing a lot of it these days. Particularly in the car. Particularly if she feels she's being excluded from a conversation. Watch how D attempts to overpower my husband's conversation with David about car air filters...
D is really taking to making new friends everywhere. While the boys wandered around the video game store, I took D to the indoor playground at Altamonte Mall (oy, that place is child bedlam on the weekends). D totally impressed me by 1) not acting like a destructive nut (like some of the kids in there who were, BTW, way over the height limit TYVM), and 2) actively seeking out a few of the younger kids and looking after them. One in particular she called "MY FRIEND! MY FRIEND!" and held her hand, walking her around the play area, helping her climb over things, and giving her kisses on her head. I caught one little shot of her helping this little girl up when she fell down. So proud of my sweet little peanut. It wasn't that long ago she was the tiny one on that playground...
Sunday I was initially planning to try my hand at my first solo trip to Epcot with the peanut, but Ian opted to join us at the last minute. I'm so glad he did, because we ended up having a day that was truly exceptional even by our admittedly high Disney standards. D had been asking for Mulan at literally every Disney trip since the last time we'd seen her (even at MK, she would say "I see Mulan? Oh... no... she at Eh-caht...." Yes, she corrected herself after the first time). We managed to get out the door and make it to the gates for open for the first time. Pluto was out greeting and D insisted, so we made a quick pit stop...
Obligatory Spaceship Earth ride...
As we were exiting Spaceship Earth and my child was leading us to the exit (she knows her way around better than I do at this point, not kidding) she proclaimed "TIME FOR NEMO RIDE!" Uhh... yeah ok, you're probably right. We headed toward The Seas (pointedly avoiding the toddler black hole of the Innoventions Fire House exhibit), and I pointed out to D that Chip and Dale were out meeting. We've only met them the one time at the Contemporary at Christmas. Any interest, kiddo?
Those two were pretty funny, a way better character experience than I was expecting. D was also very proud that she could tell Chip & Dale apart (by the noses..) and was quick to point out who was who to anyone in hearing range.
We decided to try out Turtle Talk for the first time after the Nemo ride. I'm so glad! It is such a cute and funny show! D might have stayed in the seas wandering around all day! I changed D into her Mulan dress and we killed some time in Mexico. She even let me put her hair up. At first it was all "NO! NO PONYTAIL!" "D, I was going to put your hair up like Mulan's..." "Oh, okay."
It's not quite enough hair for a bun yet, but at least most of it makes its way up into the holder now. D also discovered the kidcot coloring centers, where she spent more time getting marker on her hands than the coloring stick, but whatever. We got to China a little early so D had to find ways to entertain herself. First she twirled with Daddy, mostly to prove him wrong when he insinuated that the Mulan dress wasn't particularly twirl-friendly...
Then she broke out Reflection again to serenade our fellow shoppers.
At last Mulan emerged through the back entrance doors and we had our moment. Mulan even remembered that I'd told her last time that the dress was too big still. I captured the whole walk from the bench to the meeting area on video, please forgive its shakiness as I was 1) walking backward and 2) desperately trying not to ram into anything or anyone while still soaking in D's reaction.
Ok, time out. It's stuff like this that allows me to proudly proclaim that I drank the Disney kool-aid. How many 2-year-olds get to walk through China with their hero talking about shoes and looking for fish? There's something to be said for kids this age and their ability to still believe in magic, and Disney helps take that to the next level. I get a little choked up when I watch this, because moments like this (and having the memory of them for the rest of her life) are priceless (ok, the passes have a price). It's all about the incredible people who work at Disney and the capacity in them to go above and beyond to CREATE a moment like this. My heart SWELLS to know there are such incredible, kind people out there who make it their job to bring this kind of happiness to kids every day. Alright, off the Disney soap box, time in...
So, yeah, it was pretty much a new Best Day Ever (although Disney has me trained now to know that they can always top themselves). D and Mulan talked necklaces (Mulan's favorite color is Jade...), and Mulan even taught D the famous Warrior Pose. D was focusing so hard on holding that pose she had trouble looking up for a picture. We'll have to give it some practice and break it out again in the future. Finally we said our goodbyes and made our way back out into the world showcase with D humming "Reflection" to herself. We were in Africa when D asked for the water and proceeded to dump the whole thing down the front of her dress. C'est La Toddler Vie, but this wasn't my first time at the rodeo and I had an outfit change on standby.
After lunch we changed into Aurora (D's been pretty keen on Sleeping Beauty lately, too, singing Once Upon a Dream to me all the time). Belle was getting ready to do meetings so we hopped in her awesomely short line (world showcase was exquisitely empty Sunday). D continued the new friends trend by latching on to the little girl in front of her and having a princess twirl-off, followed by an inspection of the little girl's autograph book.
Then D took the opportunity to use her KidCot fan to cool off Belle's blueberry which was awfully sweet.
At last it was D's turn with Belle. I continued to be totally Team Provincial Belle over Enchanted Tales, she's just more fun. Between D helping her fix her hair, Belle and I took turns quoting the movie and talking about ways for Beast to help compensate for how top heavy he is. Only at Disney would these conversations be had in all seriousness with straight faces.
Ian had a special request for our next stop: Mary Poppins (he wasn't with us when we met her at MK). Mary makes a point of telling all the kid to mind their parents and clean up their rooms. Oh, if only... (BTW, Mary's umbrella is named Polly, but is still a Dude.) D also made a point of informing Mary that her umbrella at home has Elsa-Anna on it.
D was starting to get a little toddler-drunk (my term for when she's tired and starts going nuts), but I had to try to get her with Aurora. After all, she had the dress on...
While we were waiting D kept reaching out to pull flowers off bushes. ACK! NO! I found her one that had already fallen off and handed it over. "PINK!" Have I mentioned my daughter loves pink? D, why don't you give that flower to Aurora? It matches her dress, I bet she'd love it... D's eyes got huge and she grinned, "OKAYYY!" She cradled the flower against her cheek and eagerly awaited her chance with the princess.
Aurora could NOT handle the flower.
D was a little nutso and started out running circles around Aurora. I will give the Princess credit though, she kept up with D's antics, got a good cuddle in, then taught D a NEW twirling technique that D's sure to put into practice from here on out.
D charged back over to the line to make MORE new princess friends. D's new favorite phrase is "Like me!" For example if she sees another little girl wearing a dress that she also has, she will proclaim "Anna like me! Rora like me! Elsa like me!" With that, we dumped our drunken toddler into the stroller and started making our way out of Epcot. We passed through the UK and saw Alice and Mary Poppins and switched out. "Oh, look, D! Alice!" I expected ZERO response from D since we'd made one (aborted) attempt to watch Alice In Wonderland and D had never tried to meet her before (and we all know my personal feelings on Alice...) "OH! ALICE! I meet Alice?" Ian and I exchanged dubious looked, shrugged, and hopped into the line. D made more friends.
At last we got to Alice. D greeted her with a big hug right off the bat, then started talking hair bows.
D, being the crazy kid she is, dragged Alice back up her walkway to do twirls with her. Ian said people were stopping to point and Aww. Admittedly, they're a pretty stinkin' cute twirling pair...
D was going full tilt when she managed to stumble backwards and go ass-over-teakettle into the bushes. Cue the horrified gasps of the adoring crowd. Alice gets MAJOR props from me for not making a fuss, just reaching over to help scoop D out of the bush while D loudly hollered "I OKAY! I OKAYYY!"
So touché, Alice, you totally converted me.
One minor meltdown over whether or not she should stay in the stroller later, we finally found our way out of the park. Super bowl Sunday? Let's go to a sports bar and loudly make comments about how American Football doesn't make any sense... just kidding. We did go to a sports bar for dinner and we were surrounded by people loudly hollering at the TV, but the highlight for our table was getting to watch "Elsa" sing the national anthem.
Lest you think this issue is all sunshine and daisies, Monday was back to the grind...