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Sunday, February 09, 2014

A kid snapshot in time

A snapshot in time of who Stuey is…

Stuey is a child whom is frequently skipping from one room to the next-a lightness to his spirit. He loves his Archie comic books and has a whole stack that he is plowing through. At bedtime he reads Archie to get to sleep. Stuey's bedtime routine is with Tank curled up under his head and Jake on the dog bed off to the side of the bed.

Stuey frequently loves to annoy Nora, often for no reason. Sometimes when I discipline him with  raised voice, he gets tears of sadness coming down his cheek; he is a mix of a tender soul and a rowdy boy edge.

Stuey is a budding photographer and really loves photo safaris with Patrick. He is quite responsible with his camera and knows how to charge the battery all on his own.

About once a week  in the early morning dark hours, I"ll hear the pattering of Stuey's feet running through the house as he comes into our room. If he's tired enough, he'll crawl into bed and go back to sleep next to me. Or he'll just lay there quietly until its time to awake.

A while back, I heard Stuey laughing in his sleep next to me, and when he awoke he told me of the funny dream he had. I told him that I heard him laughing. It was a fun moment we shared. I'm glad I remembered to blog about it.

Stuey continues to have a hard time with his "r"s and Nora sounds more like "Noah". Anchorage sounds more like "Anchowage".

A snapshot in time of who Nora is….

Nora is my independent, social daughter. She calls her friends on her own, sets up playmates, leaves messages, etc. When she answers the phone, she says, "Nora Saltonstall" which I just love hearing. Now her girlfriends call her up…our phone rings, a soft voice on the other end says, "is Nora there?". Nora leaps for the phone with excitement. I am glad to see her confidence build with phone skills and arranging playdates on her own. I remember the joy that brought in my own childhood.

When Nora is in a good mood, she has a good sense of humor and we find things to be very silly together. She can be very flexible and can handle changes in plans with grace. At other times, she has a very strong, stubborn spirit and doesn't take no for an answer. I try to smile inside my heart, take a deep breath and remember to appreciate this drive, stubbornness. It pays off in the end with her determination and she is a strong, independent spirit. It is not my job to "break" her strong spirit but to help her see when it is good to let go and when it is good to persist on.

Nora loves going to the new library to the children's section and looking at books. I call Nora my Barbara Walters because she has an intuitive and perceptive edge to her.

Nora notices details about the world and life that I sometimes breeze by. Something new in Kodiak, or something which is no longer around-Nora will notice.  She heard the faint hissing of my leaky tire today as she was getting ready to shut the door.


1 comment:

Molly Odell said...

I just read "Lean In" by Sheryl Sandberg. I remember you wrote about this book a while back too, and reading about Nora's personality reminded me how society conditions girls and boys to act in certain ways from a young age. I love your approach to taking a deep breath when Nora is stubborn and encourage her to persist when it's important. I have to say, I remember being a pretty stubborn/persistent kid, probably to lots of people's chagrin, but recently I've been thinking about how those traits have helped me navigate two tricky situations in workplaces where my employer was breaking the law. In both cases it would have been really easy for me to back down at several points in the conversations and meetings that ensued, but I never relented because I knew I was right. In the end both employers corrected their errors and I'm not only in a better position, but all of the other employees are as well! Putting all of these thoughts together while reading "Lean In" has helped me think about how using our powers to make a difference for the people around us is really important, even when we're encouraged not to and even when it can make us disliked in the short-term (luckily both employers were understanding, they were not maliciously out to break the law, they were just uninformed). I think this especially applies to women who are not often encouraged to speak out and break the status quo. I hope young girls like Nora won't be afraid to speak out!