26 Below

This is the real temperature, not even with a wind chill. I cannot recall a colder day. I am tempted to go outside to see what it is like. Nah, I think I will pass.

-26Benjamin’s daycare is closed today, because they are afraid they will not get enough of caregivers to work safely to maintain required ratios. So, Ben and I have a lovely day together ahead.

This weekend we are going up to a cabin we rented to celebrate Nana’s 60th birthday, so my plan was to cram my brain with Immunology all day and quiz right at 3pm so that we could leave town at a reasonable time. That cramming and quizzing will just have to wait and I am perfectly fine with that.

Instead, I’ll record our day together with some pics and videos… because that is WAY more fun anyway.  Here we go:

8 am:  An incredibly rare miracle is happening:  Ben is still sleeping!  Starting the day with some drinking from the firehose:

the firehose

9 am:  Water play!  When I wisked Ben up and perched him up on his high chair for the highly-acclaimed sink time, he said “thank you, Mama.” Another to add to a series of totally unprompted thank-yous in the past few days.  Manners for the win!

1 water play

9:30 am: Silicone cupcake holders + Toddlers = Match made in heaven.  This ate up lots of time as I cleaned the kitchen. After he finally finished organizing and re-organizing them endlessly, we whipped up cupcakes for Nana’s birthday. Mmmmm!

1 Ben Cupcakes

1 ben nanas cake

10am: Stinky peanut butter.  During snack time, Benjamin declared, “Stinky. Peeee.Yuuu,” when he got peanut butter on his fingers. He has been quite confused lately about how similar the words sticky and stinky sound. As much as I try to enunciate between the two, I still don’t think he gets it. Therefore, when he uses the potty (in his diaper) AND when his fingers get grubby with food, it’s always a STINKY.

1 ben stinky pb

As it turns out, now it’s almost 3pm and that’s as far as I could keep up…  life with a toddler is no walk in the park. 😉

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The Notorious RBG

Last week, I got lucky enough to score a ticket to see Ruth Bader Ginsberg (the Notorious RBG) speak at Hill Auditorium and she is officially my new hero. Not only was she one of 9 women in her Harvard class of over 500 and graduated top of her class, but she was an mother through it all.

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There was one moment in the Q&A when she was asked about how she handled law school while mothering a small child and her answer was absolutely spot-on. I wish I had the transcript to get her exact words, but taking some liberties in paraphrasing from my memory, she basically said this:

The hours of 4pm until bedtime were mothering time, and then I would study some more. Living in these two different worlds each day was really an advantage. Each was a respite from the other.”

So honest and so exactly true to my experience.

I think many could relate to this, especially anyone who has done both kinds of parenting (stay-at-home & working/schooling) and has chosen the latter. Of course, not everyone has the luxury of these choices. But personally, having had this luxury, I think the harder of the two for me is staying-at-home. (Truly, stay at home parents are simply AMAZING at what they do and I give them buckets of credit!)

Parenting has brought SO much joy, balance, fun, and perspective, that I just can’t imagine getting through med school as a non-parent! Crazy, right?

Of course it’s tough… a kid is a giant uncompromisable commitment that sucks away seemingly endless amounts of time. But this reality helps force time efficiency (in studying and everything else) & promotes a very thoughtful and reflective process in making the difficult choices that anyone faces of how to spread the precious resource of time.

Ruth also shared one anecdote about mothering and studying. She was at the kitchen table preparing for a big exam one weekend when her daughter walked up and grabbed her leg. She looked down to find that she had a mouth full of mothballs. A trip to the hospital and a stomach pumping later, her daughter was fine. But Ruth said that this was an incredibly transformative moment for her to help put everything in perspective.

Side note: I think I have a new goal to see all the female Supreme Court Justices speak.

    Sandra & Ruth: check!

    Elena & Sonia: I’m coming after you.

These are the things I like to do…

Eat apples whole:

photo (94)

Play Doctor:

photo (90)

Smell different spices:

photo (91)

Fly Helicopters:

Read to my baby doll:

photo (93)

Help with laundry:

photo (97)

Sort things (like old candy):

photo (99)

Try new things (especially sweet things, like suckers!):

photo (98)

Read in my chair:

photo (100)

Watch Elmo and Baby Einstein Puppets:

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And finally… my first 3-word sentence came out yesterday: “Baby Aahna, come!”  We were talking about seeing our friends who have a baby named Aahna and Ben got quite excited, so he replaced “Toby, come” (the usual command) with Aahna’s name.

Later in the day he followed this with a 4-word sentence! “Mama, you pick it.” (referring to me choosing the last bedtime story).