Susie's Leaning Tower of Chocolate

Hi, I'm Susie. You can find out all about me, or just read my journal.

[No comments] Maggie Draws: Maggie is really getting into her artistic side. She spends a lot of her free time drawing. She enjoys the Wings of Fire and Warriors (cats) book series and draws and creates characters from them. She’s taken a few live online drawing classes through Outschool. She asked for a drawing tablet for Christmas and has started doing some digital art. I’m very impressed with her work.

[No comments] Dalton Bikes: Lately, Dalton has been meeting up with friends after school and going for bike rides alll over town. This morning he and I biked over so he could show me a tree that he climbed - all the way to the top. It was pretty awesome. I gave him a lecture about stopping at stop signs and only crossing the street at crosswalks and we rode home. I love seeing my kids play outside.

[No comments] Glitter on the Highway: Sienna to Arthur: it’s not that I don’t like Gibson. I love him. I’m going to marry him unless something else comes up.
She then started singing Achy Breaky Heart, followed by Love Shack, songs she apparently learned through Go Noodle.

Except. Sienna has been working with a speech therapist to overcome her pronunciation of the “sh” sound - it comes out “s.” So she was singing “Love Sac” over and over and I couldn’t stop laughing. Honestly, I don’t even hear her mispronunciations, but that one was loud and clear.

[No comments] Walrus: Arthur’s interpretation of Catching Fire
Someone died from the storm troopers. It was the person that girl was in love with. But then that person got back alive, that’s cool right?

Arthur is obsessed with Walruses. Wants to be a walrus for Halloween, calls everything a walrus and says the word Walrus allllll the time.

These are notes I made about Arthur four months ago. Still true. All walrus, all the time.

Arthur’s Tics: Recently, Arthur started opening his mouth really wide all the time, so I investigated. He told me in a quiet voice that he had a little problem. His mouth, eyes, and nose are itchy. I told him to show me, and he opened his mouth really wide, rolled his eyes really hard one direction, and folded his lips in to stretch his nose.

Dalton’s Dream: What Dalton claims happened: he had a dream he got out of bed and went up to our room to ask about health insurance.

What actually happened: he came up to our room in the middle of the night, and we were in such a deep sleep and he was talking so quietly that it took me forever to figure out what he was even saying. I think it was about helping with his Nintendo DS Pokémon game. I finally told him in was the middle of the night and he couldn’t play his game, and he needed to go back to bed. Then I rolled over and went back to sleep.

I probably should have made sure he made it safely back to bed, but I was so tired it didn’t even occur to me.

Aww, He Did Something!: When we first got Wally, Sienna and Arthur acknowledged every thing he did as ultra cute. Now we all do it. Aww, he shaked! Aww, he stretched! Aww, he itched! (Itching is when he rubs his head in a pile of clothes.

Seeds of Feminist : Dalton and I went for a walk this morning. When he referred to a nongendered video character as “them” it opened a conversation about the male default. It’s something he has noticed already. I told him as a male, he has even more power to change that.

Sprinkles and Perfume: Sienna and her friend wanted to make perfume during their play date. They needed another little container, so I emptied out a nearly empty sprinkles container into their cupped hands, and they gobbled them up, then went outside to collect flowers. They found lots of “beautiful smelling” flowers, including “lavender”, added a little water and, voila! Perfume!

Welcome 2021: We spent New Year’s Eve taking a snowshoeing class with Dalton, and exploring around silver lake at Solitude. In the evening we ate Chinese food and played games (Mastermind, Boggle, Racko) with Grandma, and doing puzzles. When I tucked an overtired Arthur into bed around 9, he whispered “goodnight, happy new year, have a good sleep, have a good new year, goodnight mom” over and over. This morning when he woke up, he crawled into bed and snuggled me for half an hour and talked about how this year he will turn six and go to kindergarten.

Crash: The other day, Arthur fell in the car and whacked his face on the center console. There was a lot of blood. One of his teeth got pushed back, and he refused to close his mouth. He sat on the couch drooling for three hours until his emergency dental visit. The dentist numbed him up, pushed the tooth back in place, and Arthur went home super swollen. By the time we had his favorite beef stroganoff for dinner, he could sort of eat, and was starving from not eating all day. Once the swelling went down, the tooth mostly went the rest of the way back into place. He has a mysterious black eye now, several days later, I assume from that. Poor kid.

Nune : I asked Sienna if she wanted a bath or a shower and she spelled “N U N E.”

‘Scovering: Arthur and Sienna came in from playing in Grandma’s backyard without coats on. “We’ve been scovering. Sienna been scovering the ice, I been scovering the snow. I scovered a lot.”

Nativity: Last night, we got together with our (Covid bubble) friends and did a Nativity play. This isn't something we usually do, but it is their tradition and they invited us to participate. We brought lots of our India clothing for dressing up, and John's shepherd outfit from Israel. Arthur was a cute little shepherd with a stuffed llama, Dalton wore John's India outfit and was a king. Maggie was also a king, with my silk sari tied around her waist, and Sienna was Mary with a nice scarf over her hair. John played the piano and we sang lots of carols in between the narrative. The whole thing was lovely.

A Lot: Arthur has been alive for approximately 158 million seconds. In case he asks.

Francer: I was just reading some old Sienna blog posts to her and we saw this one about the Very Real Reindeer And remembered she and I just had an argument on the way to gymnastics on Monday about whether or not there was a reindeer named Francer.

12/12 Covid Baptism: Sienna was baptized this morning. In California purple tier, religious gatherings are allowed outdoors, so our options were the ocean, or the bishop’s hot tub. John, having baptized in the ocean previously, was not at all sad about the hot tub choice. We had our best friends there, and Sienna’s little neighbor friend and her mom, and the Bishop. That was it. The hot tub was a big in ground one, and the water went up to her chin. After the confirmation we had temple sugar cookies, and that’s it. No fancy talks or anything, but it was a memorable experience.

Christmas Spirit: This afternoon we went to the church to record some Christmas songs we are singing for the (virtual) ward Christmas program. On our way home, we stopped at a stoplight next to a car with a Christmas tree on top. The driver of the car waved excitedly when he saw John looking at him. We spent the rest of the way home trying to figure out if we knew them. We did not, but the whole whole the car is following behind us because they live on our street. Weird, funny coincidence.

A P P L E S A U C E: Arthur has officially learned how to open his own applesauce. Considering how many he eats, and how many I refuse to open for him, it’s surprising it took so long. He has one when he wakes up, in the car after school, before bed, and whenever else he can convince someone to open one for him. Still obsessed.

Our Teenager: Arthur calls Maggie “our teenager” or sometimes “my sister who is a teenager.”

California Dreamin’: We are back from a trip to Utah for Thanksgiving, and took full advantage of everything California (currently) has to offer. Aka sunshine. We took the kids hiking at Quail Hill. We scootered and rollerbladed and played with chalk and frisbees in our awesome, big driveway. We enjoyed our outdoor space in the hammocks, and John set up his new weight bench to workout outside. We went for a walk around the neighborhood. John and I biked to a nearby shopping center and ate dinner outside. It was a glorious sunshiny day.

Giving Thanks for Snow: This morning we woke up to a surprise 1/2” of snow on the ground. We went outside to play around for a bit, and ended up taking a spontaneous sledding trip to the park. We were practically in our pajamas, and four out of the five sleds ended up with broken handles, and we were the only people there - silly Californians enjoying a tiny bit of snow. But we had a blast, and got just as much speed as we do when there’s 6 inches. Wally wasn’t a big fan, but he tolerated it. Once Sienna started crying about how cold and wet she was, we headed home. It was a fun, impromptu, pre-breakfast, Thanksgiving activity. Next time: snow pants.

All Night Long : Arthur, giving me a big hug before bed time: “I’ll miss you for 12 hours.”

So sweet. Also, 12 hours? Yeah right. Even if he miraculously sleeps in his own be the whole night.

Politics 2020: I don’t often say much about politics, but I feel the need to complain about what a baby our current president is. Politics aside, I could never vote for Trump. He’s a terrible leader, so selfish and narcissistic, he is divisive, he treats people abominably, has no self-control, is entitled and rude. I’ve been embarrassed about him for over 4 years. I want a presidential president, one with an aide handle his or her social media accounts, please. Someone to unite and lead, or at least not spout off and embarrass. So much cringe.

Dinner and Scoot: Today we scootered to the nearby plaza for dinner. It was a quick ride, the temperature was great, the food was delicious. A nice evening spent with the family.

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