13 June 2007

The Summer of Blessed Events with My Favorite Micromanager

  • Is it cheap to use lists to get back in the game after a blogging silence?
  • Maybe so, but what better way to offer teasers for half-written posts that I'd like to think you'd be interested in.
  • Before this list gets too long, let me urge anyone with Massachusetts connections to make contact with their state legislators to protect marriage equality in that state. If you live in Massachusetts, urge your legislator to vote against the proposed referendum on marriage; if you know people in Massachusetts, urge them to call. It's not a good idea to put civil liberties up for popular vote. Mass Equality has an easy-to-use site to see whom to contact. Families like ours--children like Curious Girl--deserve the protection of family law. Please call.
  • I just got back from an academic conference of department chairs. Members of my subfield were pretty regularly characterized in anecdotes as being less scholarly, less flexible, and less understanding that members of subfields more clearly central to the history of the discipline. I'm not sure this is a good way to create a path for the future of our discipline. I wrote a lot about that on the evaluation form.
  • But now I better understand what one of my predecessor-chairs told me once (a predecessor from another subfield that is similarly not-so-central to the history of our discipline, at least as how that history is chronicled by those who fancy themselves central to it): a subdisciplinary listserv was awash in congratulations after news of my predecessor's chairship was announced, with other members saying what a wonderful advance it was for the subfield. At the time, I thought "well, aren't things changing? Here in our department we are pretty well integrated." But in the field at large, apparnetly not.
  • This is, perhaps, an example of the inflexibility some of the other conferees were noting.
  • Curious Girl is, however, nothing if not flexible, in a "let's do that again and again and again" kind of way. She has invented a number of great new car games
    1. H@nn@h Matanna. Inspired by the girl-idol of that name (although some googling tonight suggests that CG is confusing HM with H!llary Duff), this game starts off "Who wants to be Hannah?....OK, I"ll be Hannah, you be Matanna." It requires a microscope, er, microphone, for Hannah, which can be easily made from a magazine or other travel literature picked up at a rest stop. Hannah starts, and the call-and-response singing begins. Some times it's real pop singing (Hey everyone, get up and dance...), sometimes it's narrative (We're in the car and I see a cow...) and sometimes it gets all meta (Why are you singing a short song?). Continue until Hannah says the show is over.
    2. Kid. Who wants to be CG's favorite teacher? Who wants to be her elder daughter? Who wants to be her dog? Let the roleplays begin! This game can take a family of three for miles and miles.
    3. Teacher. A variant on Kid, and a variant on games of school everywhere, this one has actual characters from CG's class. Guess who gets to be CG's favorite teacher every time?

  • Curious Girl has been in a pool three times in the past two days, and in none of those pool times did she need to use the bathroom and in none of those times did she cause the pool to be closed for chemical treatment. This is the Blessed Event of the summer, an event I was never sure would come.
  • CG has been sleeping with the aquarium that used to hang in her crib (something like this) as part of reconnecting with her babyhood since turning five. Last night, she said it was her computer and that she would use it to distract her while I gave her eardrops. "I have to order a book," she said, and typed Stellaluna into the computer. Then she told me I could be the bookstore, and I had to wrap the book with paper, dab it with glue, and wrap it up and send it to her (while she used her computer to transmit more info to me like her name and address). When the book arrived, she said, "Honey! I got you a book," and she read me Stellaluna. "The end," she finally prounounced. "Now you read it for real." And I did. After my "the end," she said, "I want to talk to Stellaluna," and had an adorable conversation about how she read Stellaluna at her new school, and whehter Stellaluna wanted lots of fruit to eat.
  • Tonight she watched Star Wars on her computer. She created characters using the various buttons on the aquarium and asked for my help in naming them all. "Who's going to be the green guy? with the ears?" Really, she could be a very happy girl doing nothing but pretending all day long. Why is there nothing about pretending in discussions of kindergarten readiness?
  • CG is very in charge of her pretending. Today, she walked me through a long script in which I was the mom, she was a dog, and my imaginary kid wanted a dog at the pet shop. So I put the kitty litter back, and got the white dog. I'll let you all guess what I really bought at the pet shop. I'll also let you all note who has clearly been paying attention to the fact that one of the ways I help CG work through problems is by setting up narrative play space. I guess she figures you can use the same technique on her mama.
  • Kindergarten readiness has been well-discussed around the blogosphere lately. I wish it settled my own choices about CG.
  • I love the comments on my last post: thanks for sharing our enthusiasm for Panda World. Everytime we got stuck in a traffic jam or slowdown, CG would say, "Oh no! We're stuck in Panda World!" I am very grateful for readers who put up with my erratic rhythms.


ppb said...

We'll take you any way we get you! Welcome back to blogosphere!

Suzanne said...

The pretend-play scenarios are endlessly fascinating to observe. I don't often participate, but I love to see where my children's imaginations take them. Thanks for sharing Curious Girl's!

Phantom Scribbler said...

All's fair in love and blogging, I say. Lists are not just fair, but perfectly spiffy.

Mazel tov on the pool-related Blessed Event! It seems like just yesterday you were telling floating poop stories. How time flies!

Does CG have the Stellaluna doll? Or does her pretending fly farther without such programmed props?

J. said...

Ahh, yes, the beloved "Teacher" game. My oldest is always the teacher of whatever is going on. As long as she gets to be in charge, no one gets hurt.

CG has quite the imagination. I love that she pretends to have a computer.

elswhere said...

Any way you can dive back into posting is a good way, I say! I will take you as my inspiration.

Songbird said...

Lists are fine, and yours is very informative! Stuck in Panda World, teehee.

Magpie said...

I love that pretend play stuff. My child does it by herself thus far, not pulling me or her father into it - yet.

landismom said...

Thanks for sharing her wonderful imagination! My son put a clock puzzle in his bed the other night. He told his dad he needed to have a clock next to his bed because everyone else in the family has one on their nightstand. It's funny what things they think grown-ups need (and what we wouldn't do to get rid of those clocks!)