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Archive for the ‘birthday parties’ Category

I found my camera, but still don’t have any pictures of snow-puppy. I do have pictures from Boo’s birthday party, now a couple months old. But here are a couple anyway:

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She wanted a gymnastics party, because as far as she is concerned, if you can’t climb it, jump on it or jump off it, it is no fun. For those people who are deluded into thinking that at least girls are calmer than boys and don’t treat the house like a jungle gym, I invite you over to my house to witness Boo do things like leap from the top of the bunk bed like a spider monkey to the floor. Or worse, to the rocking chair.

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Here are several of the kids waiting for their turns. The tall boy in the white shirt is Boo’s boyfriend. Isn’t he cute? Well, actually, turns out he’s one of her boyfriends. The little guy behind him is the other one. Too bad you can’t see him better, because he’s cute too.

We discovered this the other day when Boo announced, “I have a boyfriend and D has a girlfriend!” Odd way to put it, but we’ll play along. “Who are they?” Maya asked. “Well, I’m D’s girlfriend and C is my boyfriend.” We pointed out that it sounded like she has two boyfriends and she was just delighted with that notion. I’m going to have to watch that one closely.

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Someone just found my site by googling “what judaism means to me.” I find this odd. It doesn’t seem to be the sort of thing the internet is going to tell you. Speaking of, we took the whole family to synagogue this Saturday and plan to continue. We fell out of the habit at our old shul because there was nothing to keep the kids engaged, making the whole experience increasingly unpleasant. We are back on the wagon, though.

Asher threw a huge fit because services bore him silly. In truth, I sympathize completely. Just sitting and not being allowed to doodle, or knit or read something else at the same time is difficult for me as well. He solved his problem by refusing to enter the sanctuary, wandering around the rest of the building until he found a friend. I solved the problem by reading the Torah (and commentary) in great detail. It was actually quite nice. I think we all enjoyed the experience more than we expected to, which is good, because we are determined to make this a regular activity.

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Jasper has started intermediate training at Petsmart, where he did the beginner class. Same instructor too. She is great. He’s learning to stay longer, wait (which is different than stay), and heel. Heel is the one I just couldn’t quite figure out on my own. I did have a go at it now and then, and something must have sunk in, because he got it the moment I tried and while other dogs are making it 4 or 5 steps down the aisle before bolting, Jasper makes it up one aisle and down the other. Of course, it helps that he is brilliant.

Our latest move is teaching the dog to ‘touch.’ “Touch ball” is this week’s command. Every time Jasper pokes the ball with his nose or paws at it, he gets a treat. At first, he found me waving the ball in his face very annoying and tried to bite it. But he soon clued to. The instructor has great plans for ‘touch,’ like teaching the dog to turn off lights or pick up their own toys and put them away (I asked if I could bring my kids to the next class, so she could teach them that trick too).

This class is smaller than the beginner, not surprisingly. There are only 4 other dogs. One is a tiny little poodle, which I find odd. Most dogs in training classes are large, I guess because most people aren’t concerned about being able to control something that weighs only 7 lbs.

Last class, we went out into the store to work on something – the instructor likes the distractions – and as we exited the training room we passed a girl about 20 years old. When she spotted Jasper, she yelled, “Wow!” Then she followed us. She watched the training session, commenting repeatedly on how beautiful my dog was and how much she loved him. As we headed back to the room, she told me in a voice of complete sincerity, “I just love your dog so much that if I could, I’d steal him.”

I was glad to be going into the training room and away from the crazy dog stalker, but she followed us in! She sat beside Jasper and kept trying to pat him, but he was having none of it. I don’t know if he independently decided she was nuts, or if he was picking up vibes from me. When the class ended, I confess bolted ahead of the others, leaving the stalker trapped behind the other dogs going out the door, and then quickly left the store, double-checking that no one had followed me from the parking lot when I left.

There’s the down side to having the most marvelous dog in the world.

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Boo got her glasses. At first, she slid them down her nose and kept looking through, then over them and saying, “They make everything look so close up!”

I looked through them and it looked to me as though someone had painted a watercolour painting and then poured a glass of water over it. That’s strong prescription.

We had no problem keeping them on her face. She’s adjusted instantly. After one day, she pulled them down at one point and said, “How come I can’t see? Everything is fuzzy.”

I think it is probably taking me longer to get used to them, looking at my daughter’s magnified eyes on her little face.

I tried to get a decent picture of her, but she wasn’t in the mood to cooperate, so this is the best I got:

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Her teacher, who is justifiably delighted to have made such a difference in our lives, says that now that Boo has glasses, she’ll be reading in no time. I found this not quite logical. She already has been seeing the letters, having taught herself how to sight read some names and most of the letters of the alphabet. If she was going to up and read, she’d do that either way, right? Then yesterday, I was waiting to pay for something and she was sitting on the counter. She looked at the sign that said, “VISA” and asked, “What sound does the first letter make?” I said, “Vuh. That is a V.” She said, “Vuh, vuh-i-ess-ah.” Then she tried to run it together, coming up with something like “Vuessa.”

So mabye it is a coincidence, but maybe those glasses really do help somehow, because she really is trying to read.

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What I was paying for was Asher’s birthday party, where a whole gaggle of boys and two girls (cousin and sister) played laser tag. The kids had fun, the adults survived. I had promised to make him a homemade cake, but got sicker on Friday night, so I sent them off to buy one before the part. I promised I’ll make him one for his actual birthday now, on the 14th.

It was too late to special order one, so he had to chose from what was there. He chose a football cake. Thanks to the Superbowl, there were lots of those. He has no interest in football whatsoever at all. But the cake was made up of a lot of cupcakes smushed together, which was cool, and he knows his friends like sports, so he was good with it. The cupcake idea is brilliant – no cutting.

For the loot bags, I took Asher with me to the dollar store. Normally I go alone, but I always have trouble guessing what will be a hit, so I figured he could help me. He was indecisive. He’s say, “Well, I like this, but I don’t know if everyone else will.” Finally he said, “See, the problem is that I’m not like the other boys, so it is sometimes hard for me to figure out how they think.” He said this very matter-of-factly, as just the way it is.

But in the end, we managed to find stuff he was sure everyone would like, like invisible writing pens, squishy balls, little connect-4 games and, of course, candy. And from all appearances, the loot bags were a huge hit.

Alright, one down, two to go. For 6 months of the year, I am birthday-free, but starting with Asher, the next six months are birthday-filled.

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