So far, 2011 has been an enjoyable year for me. Mostly for simple reasons, but they have all added up. I have been reading more this year and so far, have read three books, all of which I would recommend. Unbroken was an amazing story of an olympian runner and World War 2. The Emperor's Tomb was a good Dan Brown like mystery that takes place in China, and The Glass Castle, which Joseph gave me for Christmas, was a book that I found hard to put down. As Joseph wrote in the front cover, "because 'Family' doesn't have a singular definition." I've never read a book like it and I still see the family from that book in my daily thoughts. I'm keeping a list on the homepage of my blog; I hope to look back on the year and call it one in which I was well read. At the moment, however, I'm taking a little reading break to do some knitting. Mum and Dad were up visiting this weekend and being around Mum always gets my creative juices flowing. Watching Mum knit is one of the most amazing things--she does it without looking most of the time, in the same way that many people touch type. She can watch movies while knitting; she can carry on conversations; she can even entertain Lilly. And her fingers just fly. While she was here, Mum knit the cutest little sweater for Lil. The finished product is always amazing and inspires me to go back to making something. So, I'm trying my hand at a sweater for Lilly. I've got half of one sleeve to go, so am almost there! Up until now, I've sewn lots of different things but I've only knitted hats so the sweater is fun for a change. I'll post pictures of our sweaters when they're finished. I wonder if you'll be able to tell who made which sweater ;-)
I also decided that this year, dinners were going to be better. I was going through a food slump at the end of 2010. I was sick of all the meals I make and was having a hard time figuring out what to have for dinner every night. So, since we returned from Florida, I have been planning out our meals for the week on Sunday, going to the grocery store on Monday...and that's it. Instead of running out to the store every day, I have everything I need for the week. It's amazing! And it makes our lives so much easier. I've tried some new recipes and am proud to say that my plan is working. I'm happier because I don't have to plan a meal and go to the store every day, Jim is happier because dinner's ready when he gets home from work (and because I'm happier) and Lil is enjoying trying new things. She also loves helping in the kitchen. She drags a chair in while I'm cooking and stands next to me, touching everything within reach, telling me what is hot and what I shouldn't be touching, emptying out whatever drawers she can get her hands on and sampling all the food. In the middle of the day, she'll come up to me and say, "Mummy, I cook." She considers herself a chef already.
Lilly becomes more of a little person every day. Yesterday afternoon, she woke up from her nap and was chatting away in her crib. I heard her reading, Go Away Big Green Monster, to Daisy. I heard her saying, "no Didi...mine." I have no idea what Daisy was trying to take away from Lilly but this doll didn't know who she was dealing with. In the last few days, Lilly has taken ownership of everything in our house. She took Jim's fork the other night at dinner and claimed it as her own. She'll pick up a coaster from the table when no one's around and say, "no, mine." When she tried to claim Jim's cereal yesterday morning, Jim politely explained to her that actually, nothing in this house is hers. It's all ours and on loan to her, so she should stop calling everything, "mine." Lilly looked intently at Jim, and then took Jim's spoon and said, "no, mine." Clearly, she got the message.
After her nap, when she had finished putting Daisy in her place, Lilly heard me in the hallway. So she started yelling, "Muuummmmmy" a few times over and over again. Then, when that didn't work, I heard, "Muuuuummmm....morning!" She started saying her version of "good morning", as if that let me know she was ready to get up. So, I laughed and went into her room at 4:00 in the afternoon, saying, "good morning." I wasn't going to argue with her. Plus, it's pretty cute.
Lilly got a cut on her finger helping me unpack the dishwasher yesterday, but luckily the Sesame Street bandaids magically made the cut go away. Here's Lilly showing me Abby on her bandaid. In the second one, she's asking me to take a picture of Abby.
She walked around with her finger pointing straight up in the air for the rest of the day and wouldn't use her right hand unless absolutely necessary. She forgot all about her cut until dinner, when she was taking some salad out of the bowl and must have got some vinegar on her cut. She started crying and asking for a new Abby, which solved our problem again. I will now make sure we have Sesame Street bandaids on hand at all times.
I want to write about our weekend with Mum and Dad and my obsession that I have with Greg Laswell after going to see him in NYC on Thursday evening, but those will have to wait until next time because I have to be presentable by 8am today for the plumber's arrival. We're having plumbing issues, which are always fun. Lil loves watching workmen when they come to the house. We had a plumber here yesterday and Lilly watched him the entire time, although she doesn't like to get too close (see picture below). She's going to be thrilled to see that another plumber will be here when she gets up this morning! Oh, the joys of being little.