Category Archives: Primrose

Motherhood / Primrose / Toddler

Motherhood Update: Prim at 2.75 years

February 13, 2018

Saying: Prim’s chatters all. day. long. She is constantly asking questions and shouting out commands (we’re feeling very three these days). She is fascinated by counting and colors, and has recently discovered that asking “why” can lead to an endless conversation (funnnn). She is picking up more and more Dutch words from her weekly dance class, which is taught entirely in Dutch. (Her first Dutch word was “née,” which means “no.” So… not surprising.) It has been funny to hear what she has picked up there, as we have now reached the stage where she is learning Dutch words I don’t know and will regularly ask me, “You know how to do the [Dutch dance word]?” and then will whip out some new dance move.

Prim’s Favorite Things: We have Spotify Premium (because we listen to music all day everyday over here) and I recently discovered that there are a number of kid’s audio books available on the service. We listen to The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh numerous times a day, followed by Stories for Children read by Danny Kaye (something from my childhood!)

Reading: Frog and Toad and Room on the Broom.

Latest trick: Prim picks up songs so quickly now. I recently started singing “Do-Re-Mi” to her (because she has this shirt) and I swear she had the whole thing down after I had only sung it to her a couple times. She is also coming home with new dance moves every week, courtesy of her Dutch dance class, and it’s so sweet to see her wiggling and shimmying around, doing “pirouettes” and “hoofd, shouders, knie en teen.” (Prim has been attending this dance class since right after she turned two, and it was the biggest mystery to us for the longest time because parents don’t watch the classes here. All the 2 – 4 year olds go into the room and they shut the door until the end of class — it’s so Dutch! Every week we would ask Prim what she learned in class, but she’s only started telling us and showing us specific moves in the last couple of months.)

Favorite toys: Prim is still obsessed with cooking in her kitchen, and will regularly sidle up to us and ask, “What should I make for ya?” (Despite our requests, the menu at Cafe Prim seems to be limited to coffee, pancakes, and salmon with lentils.)

Sweetest things: Prim is still the sweetest big sister. She works to include Lark in almost everything she does and has started reassuring her when she gets upset. Lark is going through the separation anxiety phase and will regularly lose it if I so much as leave the room. This is not my favorite phase by far, but it’s very sweet to hear Prim telling her “It’s ok sweetheart! Mama be right back, it’s just me down here.” (PS: I don’t call anyone sweetheart, so I actually don’t know where she picked this up. So funny and sweet.)

Favorite thing about this age: Between cutting 4 new teeth and suffering from the stomach flu, Lark has been struggling at night lately and waking up in the early morning. Prim wakes up when Lark is upset and will hop out of bed to turn on their nightlight, then sit in bed and “read Lark a story” to help calm her down (we keep books next to Prim’s bed so she can read if she wakes up or has trouble winding down). I often come into their room to nurse Lark after one of these episodes and Prim will tell me, “Larky’s upset. I talk to her and read her a story.” which is my cue to text KC all the heartbreak and pregnancy emojis.

Primrose / Toddler

Conversations With a 2.5 Year Old

January 29, 2018

KC: “Prim, what do nutcrackers eat?”
Prim: “CHIPS!”
KC: “Not nuts?”
Prim: “No. Chips. Not nuts.”

Prim’s 3yo cousin (running across the room): “I’m a lion!”
Prim (starts running): “I’m a lion too!”
Cousin (stops running, stands face-to-face with Prim): “No, you’re a rabbit.”
Prim: “Oh. What’s a rabbit?”
Cousin: “Y’know… (long pause, thinking. mimes rabbit ears over Prim’s head) It’s white?”
Prim: “Oh yeah. DISGUSTING.”

Prim: “Oh no! There’s a dragon under the table!”
Me: “Oh no!”
Prim: “Have to get him out!”
Me: “We have to get him out? What are we going to do?”
Prim: “Have to put your hands on his buns and push. All of us!”

Prim: “This pasta is de-lekker*, Mama!”
Me: “Thanks P!”
Prim (finishes pasta, hands me her bowl): “More garlic.”
*lekker means tasty in Dutch

Prim: “What’s chocolate?”
Me: “I don’t know, what is it?”
Prim: “My favorite food.”

Motherhood / Primrose / Toddler

Motherhood Update: Prim at 2 1/2 years

November 9, 2017

Saying: Prim’s language continues to surprise us. She was an early talker, and the things she comes up with is fascinating. She understands the concept of “after” now (“I want to listen to Prim’s music after Mama’s music.”) and is grasping daytime vs. nighttime (“It’s getting dark. I can’t wait to see the moon!”)  Her speech is very clear for her age, but I love how she mispronounces words like oatmeal (OH-pa-meel) and sprinkler (sprink-lee-er). She also regularly asks, “What you doin’, Mama?” and yells “You ok, Mama?” across the room when she hears me drop something.

Prim’s Favorite Things: I picked up an 8oz BKR bottle when we were in Copenhagen, and it has proven to be a solid purchase. Prim loves that it’s more of a “grown-up” water bottle, and it fits well in the diaper bag and holds a full 8oz of water. It has a smaller footprint than the 9oz Lifefactory bottles (which we use with a sippy top everyday at home) so it’s perfect for using on the go. I love that the BKR is glass, since I try to avoid plastic with the kids, especially for eating/drinking apparatus. (There are some good metal water bottle options as well, but I personally think metal makes water taste weird, so I tend to avoid it just due to my own preference.)

Reading: Pumpkin Eye (a holdover from Halloween), The Friendly Beasts, The Night Before Christmas.

Latest trick: Prim loves helping me cook in the kitchen. As soon as she sees me heading to the kitchen, she will yell, “I want to help!” and race over to her step stool and pull it up to the counter. If I’m making dinner I will try to give her something to “cut” (she uses a kids butter knife), like a broccoli stem I’ll be discarding. Baking is much more of a “team activity,” and she will regularly help me scoop, dump, and stir. It does generally result in at least one ingredient getting messed up, but coming from a big Italian family with strong cooking roots, I’m thrilled that she’s taking an early interest in the culinary arts. (Our recent baking favorites include these pumpkin muffins and applesauce muffins.)

Favorite toys: Prim is very into “building towers” with her Legos and lining up her beloved Gruffalo blocks. She continues to be smitten with her “babies” and regularly puts them “down for a rest” or sets them up for tummy time.

Sweetest things: Prim is so sweet and considerate with Lark. She is very good at including Lark in her play, handing her toys (“Here you go, Lark!”) and looking out for her (“Larky needs some water!”) Two-and-a-half is certainly not without its challenges (Prim has discovered the concept of asking for “something else” and has made it her current mantra), but with her newfound language skills she is also readily asking us to be involved in whatever she’s doing (“You want to build a tower with me, Mama?” “You want some tea, Daddy?” “Here, you want to hold little baby, Larky?”) Hearing her sweet, inclusive requests is definitely one of the high points of this age.

Favorite thing about this age: Prim has started making up little songs and singing about what she’s doing. I know that she gets this from me (I am totally guilty of making up silly songs and singing about anything and everything). Hearing what her little mind comes up with is so hilarious and adorable.

Motherhood / Primrose / Toddler

Motherhood Update: Prim at 28 months

September 10, 2017

Prim on vacation: going and going and going until she literally just passes out on KC in 3 minutes flat.

Saying: Prim is figuring out space and time words now, so there’s a lot of descriptive sentences happening — like “Prim read the Gruffalo book over there next to the shelf!” and “Prim have raisin toast and Rice Krispies for breakfast yesterday.”

Prim’s Favorite Things: My parents got Prim a Finding Dory backpack as a gift during their last visit to Amsterdam, which she loves. She packs up all her special things when we travel and brings it onto the plane. (It’s usually full of Gruffalo blocks, a wooden bracelet and necklace, and her babies.)

Reading: The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry and the Big Hungry BearPierre: A Cautionary Tale in Five Chapters and a PrologueA Sick Day for Amos McGeeTree; and The Gruffalo.

Latest trick: Prim is fully potty trained now, including naps and nighttime. We do still put her in a diaper at night, but she really doesn’t need it (a little insurance never hurt anyone though!)

Favorite toys: Prim is very into riding her “tiger bike,” which is a wooden ride-on toy I scored on an Amsterdam resale site for a whopping 2 euros (it’s actually this one without the cushion). That thing even managed to survive a tumble down the stairs (don’t ask), so it’s pretty dang sturdy!

Sweetest things: Prim continues to be infatuated with Lark and is still so excited to be sharing a room with her. Pretty much every night when we head upstairs to begin the bedtime routine, she will excitedly tell us “Larky sleep in your room!” (your room = Prim’s room). We have also streamlined the bedtime routine so that Prim and Lark take a bath together before bed. This not only helps us time-wise, it has also taken away some of the bedtime resistance we’ve been getting from Prim. She will hop into the bathroom, yelling “Prim take a bath with Larky!” And while getting Prim to settle in bed after stories and songs used to take ages, I have learned that she will quiet down much more willingly if I tell her she needs to be quiet in bed while Lark nurses. I honestly don’t know what I did to get this amazingly sweet relationship between these girls, but man, it is one of my most favorite things about being a mama.

Favorite thing about this age: Prim’s speech is very advanced for her age, but even so, she’s clearly still struggling to keep her mouth up with the pace of her brain. She’s started babbling again, interspersing many of the words she knows with gibberish. She often launches into these diatribes when KC gets home from work or while we’re all sitting down at dinner, as though she wants to be included in all the grown up conversation and fill everybody in on how her day went.

Motherhood / Primrose / Toddler

Motherhood Update: Prim at 26 months

July 9, 2017

Prim’s selfie game is strong, and she has far too much personality for just one person.

Saying: Prim charmed everyone in Barcelona during our recent trip to Spain. Everywhere we went she would yell out “HOLAAAA!” to pretty much everyone we saw. We also ate a lot of Spanish olives on our trip (which of course Prim loved), and she adorably calls them “holas.”

Prim’s Favorite Things: Prim is still quite attached to her baby doll and stuffed lion (both came with us to Barcelona). She is also a big fan of a coffee/tea set KC picked up on a recent IKEA trip (have you checked out IKEA’s toy selection? It’s kind of amazing!)

Reading: Song and Dance Man, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, In the Night Kitchen, King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub, and Corduroy.

Latest trick: Prim is now, for all intents and purposes, potty-trained. When I had strep and she had pink eye last month, I decided to take advantage of our self-imposed quarantine to explore potty training. Prim took to it amazingly well and, aside from her nap and bedtime, is now diaper-free. I have been so amazed by her ability to recognize and respond to cues at such a young age, and it’s pretty nice having only one baby in diapers these days!

Favorite toys: We found a kids table with two chairs at an outdoor market recently, which was such a steal at €49 for the set. The table and chairs are classic Dutch school designs from the 1960s and Prim has been loving having a special little space for tea parties and art projects.

Sweetest things: We recently moved Lark into Prim’s room, after they shared a room while we were on vacation in Spain. We also transitioned Prim into a toddler bed (because she was climbing out. Oof.) and it has been so sweet to see her take these “big kid” steps in stride. When Lark occasionally fusses while going down at night, there’s nothing sweeter than hearing Prim talking and singing to her in the monitor. Even if the whole day has been challenging and full of mom-fails, those little moments make me feel like I’m doing something right with these girls.

Favorite thing about this age: Prim sings CONSTANTLY and knows full songs now. She is obsessed with the music from Beauty and the Beast, and hearing her break out into the opening song randomly throughout the day is just the most adorable thing.