Tag Archives: lists

Harpers-style index of my life, July 20, 2014 ed.

Number of days I’ve been at my mom’s: 4
Trips to Wegmans so far: 2
Color of Birthday flip-flops from my sister this year: black, white, and pink
Major milestones achieved by 3 year old in last week: stung by first bee, sat through entire symphony concert without making noise or fidgeting too much
Reason I’m still up at 1:29am: photoshop work for social justice
Real reason I’m still up at 1:29am: Amazon
Temperature outside: a watery 61ºF
Things I’m avoiding doing: cutting fabric, sewing, sending emails, updating websites
Number of spam emails I had to delete yesterday: 28,569
How long I had to hold shift+UP to do that: like an hour
Are the blackberries ready to pick: No
Ratio of blueberries picked to spam emails deleted: 1:1
Vikings spotted: 5
Days until Pennsic: 6
Level of alarm at remaining stuff to do: Very Elevated, Blood Orange
What I’m going to do about it: Go to bed.

Best of 2012

I am so out of the loop on music and film, art and restaurants. I could make excuses about having a little kid, but it probably has more to do with being broke in academia again. Little time, little money, together equal very little participation in cultural enrichment.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t issue some “Best of” awards of my own devising…so here we go:

Best Book Read: “Cleopatra” by Stacy Schiff
Best Dessert Made: Fresh Strawberry Yogurt Cake
Best Email: May 12th. Subject line- “So last night got a little crazy” and in the body of the message, a photo of an adorable newborn baby girl.
Best New Electronic Thingy: my oh-so-shiny iPad2. I cook from it, I make lists, I read books, and I spend way too much time on Facebook. But better YET, it keeps my daughter delightfully happy and QUIET on airplanes and in car seats.
Best TV Show: Downton Abbey. No other show results in conversations between me and my friends that go like this-
“Downton. Omg.”
“I know”
“Omg.”
“I know!”
“Omg.”
Best Childhood Milestone Reached: Saying words! I would normally put Sleeping through the night, but I have been waiting to know what goes on in her little head for SO long, I love hearing her talk. Parents of non-stop 3/4/5 year old talkers, don’t ruin this for me!
Best Sister of the Year: Mine. She comes with airport pick-ups, a college degree, insane makeup skills, coveted just-released perfume samples, a ton of volunteer hours, a nutella addiction, and endless supply of “my auntie is awesome” tshirts in whatever size my daughter is.
Best Twitter Feed: @HonestToddler
Best Article: Also Most Terrifying Article- “Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math” by Bill McKibben in Rolling Stone
Best Photo:

Have a wonderful 2013!

Harper’s Index of My Life: October 2012 Edition

Quantity of alphabet magnets on my coffee table: 36
Time it took to put my daughter to bed last tonight: 1 hour
Time it felt like it took to put my daughter to bed tonight: 3 hours and 45 minutes
Ratio of dishes washed every day to dishes dirtied: 1 : 1.1
Times I’ve said “take a bite and then I’ll turn it back on” in the last week: 1.6×10^5
Most limited clothing item: pants
Number of leaf piles assembled (by foot) for jumping in: 2
Percentage completion of child’s halloween costume: 5%
Book currently reading: “The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements” by Sam Kean
Number of tabs open on my browser right now: 22
Magnitude of my first earthquake, 9 days ago: 4.5
Whereabout of my sister, who my toddler asks to talk to every day: Ghana
Soundtrack I’ve heard 20 times this week: Mary Poppins
Amount of appreciation I have for Julie Andrews: endless
Runaway cats we have attempted to catch in the park to number of runaway cats caught: 1:0
Number of times I’ve been reminded that there was a cat in the bushes a few days ago: 53
Ratio of pigeons to squirrels fed: 40:1

50 Ways to Show Your Kid You Love Them to Pieces (toddler edition)


Okay, I put some thought into it and tried to do that more-creative list of how to show kindness, appreciation, and have a sweeter relationship with your child. As I said in the last post, I have read a number of these kinds of lists lately on other blogs and was underwhelmed by the suggestions.

Well, it turns out, it’s actually really hard to put together a list like this without sounding sappy, insane, or random. I just had to think about things I do and want to do for my kid and hope it translates to others. So, for what it’s worth, here is the result:

1. Let them be naked.
2. Give them permission to tear out all the pages in a magazine.
3. Tell them they are the winner of a special “Most Beloved Toddler” award and give them some beads, a medal, or a tiara.
4. Give them a whole sheet of stickers to go crazy with.
5. Once in awhile, ditch your errand and let them drag you around a shopping center.
6. Buy fun straws.
7. Put on a serious puppet show over their crib railing.
8. Count things, describe things, explain things, even if it seems obvious.
9. Task them with throwing (throw-appropriate) purchases into your cart in the grocery store.
10. Paint with them frequently.
11. Tell them about your day, even if they were present for it.
12. Give them their own space, a No “No” Zone.
13. Put weird things on your head and see how long it takes until they notice.
14. Give them a back-rub or foot-rub with lotion, if they like that sort of thing.
15. Let them “help” in the kitchen.
16. Talk about their favorite animal and look at pictures of them online.
17. Make up stories about their toys.
18. Don’t just hug them and tell them you love them often: hug them, tell them you love them, AND tell them you love what they’ve done with their hair.
19. Succumb to the allure of the occasional sugary snack together.
20. Slow dance, with more feeling, to ridiculous 80′s rock ballads.
21. Save them cool things to play with, like paper towel roll tubes and boxes.
22. Pay close attention to things like what size pieces they like their foot, how warm or cold they like to be while sleeping, what volume they prefer your voice to be while reading.
23. Get rid of clothes that are too tight, uncomfortable, itchy, or too complicated.
24. Give them lots of new foods to try.
25. Let them unfold the contents of your dresser.
26. Make your kid something completely unique and fantastical to play with.
27. Smell all the spices in the spice rack together.
28. Accept that you are helpless against the inevitable and give them their own cell phone (it can be on old one that’s inactive, or a toy phone).
29. Praise them for their unparalleled abilities to make a creative mess.
30. Feed birds, squirrels, etc. in the park together.
31. Pop into pet shops or markets just so they can look at the fish in their aquariums.
32. Let them choose their new clothes at the store once in awhile, they may surprise you.
33. Take pictures of them sleeping. (My sister assures me this is not creepy, it’s loving!)
34. Keep track of measurements, health, milestones, sure… but also mark your child’s changes in sense of humor, favorite flavors, attitude towards babies, the sound of their cry, the way they show affection.
35. Wrap them up in warm laundry fresh from the dryer as you fold.
36. Wait for them to put their shoes on and breathe deeply.
37. Open an email account just for them and let their adoring family and fans send them messages. It’s like a virtual letterbox for them when they’re older.
38. Be unapologetic to other adults about protecting your child from things that harm them.
39. Read books together, read on the floor, read on the bus, read in the car, read even when you are totally tired of reading, then ask them to read to you.
40. Donate to a special charity in their name. Tell them why.
41. When they are sick, let them get away with stuff you otherwise would not.
42. Let them help you at the ATM.
43. Educate yourself on childhood development.
44. Take your playtime seriously and your serious-time playfully.
45. Let them splash you in the bathtub. You’ll dry.
46. Take a day, now and then, to devote wholly to things that your kid loves to do.
47. Make conversation, listen to them even if it’s just babble.
48. Thank your child when they help, when they try, and most of all for just being.
49. In all ways, seek out the person they truly are, not who you want them to be.
50. And don’t be stingy with the sunscreen.

Harper’s Index of my Day

Number of times I have read “Big Frog won’t Fit In:” 7
Percentage of my daily iron consumed: 5%
Times that I have tried to do something productive and was called away to prevent serious property damage by my minor dependent child: 15
Pieces of cheese on the floor: 2
Likelihood of getting a shower today: 1:3
Time it was before I caved and let my child eat a pumpkin cookie: noon
Length of time passed between child opening a new box of toys and being bored with all the new toys: 9 minutes
Number of things picked up by child at playground that are harmless versus disgusting: 0:8
Price of a carton of milk at the local Supermarché: $6.99
Percentage of day that the cat has spent inside the “new” box: 66%
Days that I’ve had a headache in the past 34 days: 31
Number of apples I still have to do something with: 21
Chance I will do dishes tonight instead of eating ice cream and wasting time online: 1:10^12
Number of times I thought “I love this baby!” today: 50,102