Why Lemony?
(the “About Me” page)

September 21, 2008

the jib, the jab, and the shine

Billy's been entertaining us lately with making JibJab Sendables ecards. If you haven't explored this site, I highly recommend you put it in your bag of tricks for a rainy, sniffly day.

Here's the first one he made, starring his sister, mother, and grandmother.

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(Reprinted with permission of Billy's mom, I swear.)

The next one is the best one he's made so far, in my opinion. Usually you cut and paste people's faces into a little music video, but for this one, he made the faces out of things he found in the kitchen. Banana bread guy reminds me of the gingerbread man that runs away from everyone, except this is him in "high school".

Watermelon and Banana Bread

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You know, I've never seen a High School Musical movie, but this still makes me laugh till I cry. Billy made another one with this same video but with his and my faces pasted on. That one, I find a little disturbing. Although, I must admit that it also makes me laugh.

Posted by Bahiyyih at 10:10 AM | Comments (2)

September 19, 2008

a little chat about what the kids are like these days

I hab a kod id by doz. So I'm messin around on the computer today while Billy takes care of us all. Our camera is back from the shop where it got a new lens mechanism, so I can post pictures again. Yeah!

Teresa quote from this morning: 'I have to make something in my creation office'. Have I ever talked about the game Teresa plays called ball catch? You roll a ball back and forth on the floor and as you roll it, you say a random word. The other person either says a word related to your word or something totally different. The only wrong answer is saying something boring and obvious,like the person-across-from-you's name. If your word is different enough from Teresa's word, it will make her laugh, and that is how the game is won, although certainly not ended. Here's a sample from this morning:
Me: teddy bears
T: purple lipstick (I laugh)
Me: backpack
T: pink poodle
Me: green scissors
T: tea bags (I laugh)
Me: honey flamingo (Teresa laughs)
T: pink frosting cake
Me: little black nose
T: cookies
Me: purple candy
T: pink lollipops
Me: candied apples
T: frosting pie (I laugh)
Me: raspberry tart
T: sprinkles
Me: tar bubbles (T laughs)
T: apples
Me: rat snakes
T: submarine (I laugh)
Me: blue sky
(end of game)
We often get stuck on dessert items, so when we break away from them, it makes us laugh extra hard. She must be learning what kinds of things are related to each other if non-sequiter is the height of humor for her.

The other thing she's really into standing on her head on the couch. She spends as much time upside down as she can, I'd say at least an hour a day, in little bits.

Georgia has the most interesting ideas about money I've ever heard from a kid. She says, "I don't want you to waste money buying a bunch of toys for me". She really dislikes shopping of every kind and almost never sees anything she wants in stores. When she does decide she wants to go shopping, she often spends her allowance buying presents for her sisters and cousins, really thinking about them and what they might want.

I'm hoping this is partially the result of us not exposing her to TV commercials. I think it might be because every single time she happens to see a TV commercial by some fluke, she tells us all about this exciting new product and how cool it is. So I think she is just as susceptible as the rest of us to marketing ploys, she just hasn't had them hammered into her brain.

In other news, Maya has really taken to reading now that she feels like it's her thing and not something her mother is trying to convince her to do. Hooray for Montessori (and maybe a little positive peer pressure)!

Where did she get her voice from? I have really never heard such a loud deep voice in a little girl. I'm especially aware of it in the early morning, of course, when she is objecting to certain foods Billy is trying to put in her lunch.

She's into making little pictures of teddy bears and scissors, etc. on little pieces of paper and proudly writing my name on them (it is the longest word she knows how to spell) and then putting them in my 'mailbox' (under my pillow) for me to find. It's great fun.

Posted by Bahiyyih at 11:03 AM | Comments (1)

September 08, 2008

out of focus, but drifting the right way

I was thinking today about what it means to be an adult, and I suddenly got this very strong image of Billy and I as all of the ages we have been, all together in one being, just being ourselves in the world. Our lives were being created by who we are inside, interacting with what is possible around us. It was a very peaceful, powerful and vulnerable moment that I glimpsed. It was kind of like wandering around, not knowing what we're doing, but knowing better and better who we are and so learning how we want to create the world around us.

I guess it's kind of hard to explain, but I felt much better after I saw that emotional image of maturing personhood. Like who we are inside is the most powerful force we can express. Maybe I'm talking about our souls. Hmm.

Posted by Bahiyyih at 05:45 PM | Comments (1)

September 06, 2008

Cleaning day

So... I was going to say more about cleaning. My mom reminded me today that I always kept my room neat when I was a kid. I guess I remember that but I think I became less and less motivated to clean my living space when it expanded to a whole house with several small built-in mess makers.

There's this whole Montessori approach to cleaning where messes are kept managable with very clear instruction about where each thing goes and completing the cycle of an activity by cleaning it up at the end. You are responsible for your little 'work' that is on your little mat and there are a bunch of other kids all doing the same process around you. Teaching that to the kids has been an uphill battle over the years, for at least three reasons:

1. My house is not a Montessori classroom with a neat little shelf for each thing. Far from it, although we've tried to move in that direction over the years.

2. The overall level of willingness to cooperate with clean up instructions started out very low when Georgia was little and it was just the parental will against hers. It has gradually risen as the kids all get a little older and there are three of them seeing that they are all being asked to behave the same way. It's not just some crazy grown-up thing.

3. I don't always like cleaning up each activity before I go on to another. It's way more compelling and miraculous when there's a huge mess to clean up than when just a few things are out of place. I feel like I've really accomplished something when I clean up a big mess that's been growing for weeks.

4. There are so many other things I'd rather be doing than cleaning up and, unfortunately for my long term success, trying to motivate little children to clean up is NOT one of them.

Despite the complaining though, we have recently started to get more cooperation from the kids about cleaning up, especially on Cleaning day (Saturday morning) when there is a special time for that and nothing else. It's been a long distance marathon for me trying to create and keep up with a habit like Cleaning day. I pretty much never want to do it when I wake up Saturday morning. I feel like I'm stretching and maturing as a person when I can be a good leader anyways and help the kids to do their cleaning themselves and do mine and not get grouchy. I've learned to take breaks, put on good dance music, have a treat at the end, and be sure to feed the tired cleaners well.

I've also learned that everyone has a different kind of cleaning that they like to do. I like sweeping. The whole room looks clean to me when the floor is clean, and I love being able to see hardwood floors shine. So pretty! I also like picking up impossibly enormous messes, though, of course, I don't appreciate anyone making them just for my sake.

What do you think about cleaning your house? What's your process?

P.S. In case anyone is wondering, Billy is very much an equal partner in keeping the house clean and teaching the kids to do so also. Just thought I'd mention that so noone thinks I'm being oppressed or anything.

Posted by Bahiyyih at 09:28 PM | Comments (2)