Wednesday, February 16, 2005

It's all about the love

I blew off work early on Monday. You can do that when you're self-employed.

I'd leave early to pick up Helena from daycare. It was a shitty damp day, but I needed fresh air and change of scene if I was going to get anything done this week.

I'd stop by a bookstore to centre myself (always a risky proposition — if it works, it works; if it doesn't, I get angry and stay miserable for days).

As if to taunt me, there in the bargain stacks was Don Quixote — the handy-dandy cheap paperback version. I stared it down, casually turned one copy over in my hands, tossed it back. Smollett, hah! Just to spite Cervantes, I bought some chick lit.

I stepped outside to the freshness of falling snow and church bells on the breeze. There was a hustle and bustle of pedestrians carrying flowers and chocolates and other packages. This was as good as Christmas. Suddenly, love was in the air.

I've never been a big fan of Valentine's Day. Sometimes J-F and I exchange tokens, sometimes not. But we celebrate love when we can. Still, any excuse will do to order in Chinese food and just be in each other's company, setting aside all the daily worries for a few hours.

(My fortune: "A thrilling time is in your immediate future.")

(We're pretty sure Helena was conceived on Valentine's Day, or maybe it was the day after.)

Anyway, things are looking up. My blahs — whether February-related or work-inspired, whatever — are lifting.

I took a lead from Suzanne and proclaimed Saturday "Get the Hell Out of the House Day." We wandered through neighbourhood shops. Helena fell in love with a hat among the new spring fashions; we bought it for her. We lunched, out.

In other toddler news:

Helena uses a fine-tip pen to draw all over her face. The ink did wash off, to reveal very many red scratch lines.

Helena helps me make banana muffins, from scratch, since we have to do something with all those bananas she lately refuses to eat. She refuses to eat the banana muffins, but she serves them to her dolls. J-F hates banana, period. I'm having banana muffins for breakfast and snacks all week long.

The way she rests her head on her hand when we sit at the table, like I do.

Helena has pretty much toilet-trained herself. I haven't really done anything to promote this behaviour, so it amazes me that suddenly she's using the potty successfully 3 or 4 times a day, both at home and at daycare.

Helena steps onto an escalator for the first time all by herself. The elation of vertigo in her face.

Waiting for J-F to finish his workday so we could all go home together, watching the water fountain. Such intense oohing and aahing! Utter joy!

In the writing of this, I realize that so many little developments of hers are going unremarked. That is, they're duly noted, but I fail to write them down, relegating them to memories. So many. I must try a little harder.

It's snowing right now, and it's beautiful.


Janet said...

Seriously. Why does anyone need a holiday to celebrate love? To paraphrase something The Beatles once said, All You Need Is Love.

Michele said...

It makes me smile to think that Helena feeds the banana muffin to her dolls. Does she have tea parties for them or do the dolls also get fed at non-teatime hours?

This is a beautiful list Isabella and I agree with Janet love does nto need a holiday.

Diana said...

Lovely, Isabella.

I smiled at the escalator thing; we were living in a very small town with no escalators when our kids were that small, and when we made the trip to Spokane one weekend they were in absolute awe of the "moving stairs." We forget how amazing things like that are...

Anonymous said...

Ahhh...'tis lovely!

I'm so...what? Proud of you? That sounds so condescending...what I mean is, I'm thrilled by you and for you, that you're managing to record as much as you have about Helena. And also doing some interesting writing about some other subjects. Very good work, Isabella.