created Apr 8, 2019 - (catching up on typing notes that I took on Mar 26, 2019)
I got called in from the bullpen to watch Gabbie for the day on Tue, Mar 26, 2019. Rhonda strained her back, and she needed to rest. Catherine has been off work, since early March, due to doctor's orders. Catherine will give birth to her next child soon. Even though Catherine is at home, mainly resting, someone else helps watch two-year-old Gabbie.
I arrived shortly after 9:00 a.m. Upon entering the house, I was greeted immediately by a joyful Gabbrielle who, as usual, proceeded to help me remove my coat and shoes. Sometimes, she tugs at my flannel shirt, getting me to remove that layer too. She likes to see my t-shirts, which occasionally contain interesting images, especially birds.
After settling in, Gabbie took my hand and led me to her play area and directed me to sit in one of the tiny chairs that surround her small table. She will pat the chair seat, which is her way of telling me to sit down. We sit at this table to pretend that we are having tea and pretending to eat food.
Gabbie has a nice play kitchen setup. She handed me a lot of food and kitchen tool toys, such as plastic fruit and veggies and pots, pans, and silverware. We both pretended to pour tea and drink tea. I said "cheers" and we klinked our tea cups together.
Gabbie placed three dolls in the other chairs that surrounded the table. Gabbie continued to hand me toy food and kitchen tools. The table was covered. Gabbie would hand me the items, and sometimes, she would say, "Here you go," which is a phrase that I have used with Gabbie a lot over the past couple years with her when I hand things to her.
We played at the tea table for good while, and then we moved to another area of the play room, on the floor. We played with the Little People and the Little People farm. Gabbie has a lot of Little People and other small people-like toys. She got the toys out of the container, and we set them up in the farm, the house, and whatever else was setup. I set the little people up on the floor. It was quite the large gathering, like a festival.
After playing with the Little People, Gabbie moved on to playing with magnetic letters and the related metal tray.
Then Gabbie led me from the play area to her bedroom. I sit on the floor a lot when I play with Gabbie. She will grab my hand and try to lead me away, but I don't pop up that easily from the floor.
The North Carolina family members gave Gabbie a large, play tee-pee that is setup in her room. It's cool. I like it. I can easily fit inside it with Gabbie, and that's what we did.
Gabbie left the room and brought into the tee-pee the following things that were in the living room:
- her favorite blanket, which is a fleece blanket
- a baby doll
- and two, small elephant, taggie-like tiny blankets or whatever they are called
Those four items HAVE to be with Gabbie when she sleeps in her new, low profile bed that she can get into and out of on her own. When she wakes up in the morning and from her afternoon naps, she brings those four items with her into the living room.
After those four items were given to me in the tee-pee, Gabbie left and went into the play area and returned with a large container that held the foam building blocks that I enjoy playing with.
Now the tee-pee was busy with Gabbie, me, the Fab Four sleepytime items, and the foam blocks. I tried building towers with the blocks, knowing that Gabbie would whack down my towers, which she did.
Gabbie liked to play with the blocks and basically lounge around in the tee-pee with all of the toys. I covered her with the blanket, which became a game.
We spent a good long while, playing in the tee-pee, and then Gabbie wanted to go the downstairs area of their split-level home.
The downstairs living area contains another form of tent that is roundish, and is harder for me to enter, but once I worm my way inside, I can sit up, and room exists for me and Gabbie and more toys. Gabbie likes to bring toys into her tents, and that's what she did this time. Sometimes, she likes to bring into this round tent the parts of her large Frozen Barbie doll castle.
After spending time playing in the downstairs tent and maybe elsewhere downstairs, Gabbie and I spent a little time, resting on the couch, watching a bit of TV while Gabbie took a snack break. I normally give Gabbie Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Crackers because I've been a long-time fan of goldfish crackers, and I helped to get Gabbie hooked on them back in 2017, I think. And we both like the animal cracker cookies.
Then after the short snack break, Gabbie played with her favorite thing in the basement: the shelves of DVDs. Gabbie likes the challenge of opening the plastic DVD containers and pressing the button that releases the DVD from the container. Sometimes, she cannot open the DVD, and she hands it to me. When she's successful, she also hands the DVD and the case to me, and the proceeds to pull another DVD off the shelf and repeat the process. I don't understand the attraction, but I play along, and clean up later.
Gabbie likes repetition. I like to crochet, repeating the same simple stitch zillions of times. Maybe Gabbie will enjoy knitting or crochet some day.
Gabbie also likes physical challenges. She likes to climb up her toy plastic slide, not on the steps, but up the slide part as we all did as kids. Gabbie likes to climb on the exercise equipment.
Gabbie likes to play with things that require force to push the item together and force to pull the item apart. She like the large Lego-like plastic bricks, pushing together and pulling apart. Currently, she has no interest in stacking wooden blocks and foam blocks because no physical effort is required.
For the foam blocks, she likes forcing the cylinder-shaped blocks into the square blocks that have a hole. And then she likes pulling the cylinder-shaped block from the block with the hole. Effort. Challenge. Hence the reason why I think that she likes opening the DVD cases and popping out the DVDs.
After the DVDs, Gabbie went to the exercise equipment and climbed on it. I joined her. She likes to push the peddles. The machine is similar to a recumbent bicycle. Gabbie likes to hold onto the handles, pulling herself up. I hold her too and let her push on the peddles. She enjoys physical play. She likes to wrestle with me.
After "playing" with the exercise equipment, we went back into the round tent. Then we spent time playing with toys outside the tent that are scattered in the downstairs area. Gabbie enjoys playing with me, but in recent months, she spends more time playing by herself.
Finally, it was time to head upstairs and eat lunch, since it was about Noon. Gabbie ate okay, but not great. I brought healthy snacks for me to eat, including a mason jar of homemade applesauce that Deb made and canned last fall. I love applesauce and so does Gabbie. We both ate a lot of applesauce.
At 12:17 p.m., we were back inside the tee-pee, located in her room, playing. Then we went to the living room for a bit and then back to her play room area where Gabbie pretended to dust with a washcloth that Deb had made for Gabbie.
Sometimes, Gabbie moves fast from one activity to another. We went back downstairs because that was what she wanted to do. I changed her diaper downstairs. Gabbie played with the DVDs some more.
And more importantly, Gabbie played with some puzzle pieces, snapping them together. The Minnesota family members gave Gabbie two small puzzles for Christmas. Gabbie likes to snap things together like these puzzles and the plastic buckles on child-related chairs/seats.
At 1:07 p.m., I made Gabbie go upstairs because it was nap time. She usually goes to her bedroom for her afternoon nap between 1:00 p.m. and 1:30 p.m., but she never goes to sleep immediately for her nap. And usually, she's not happy about nap time. She wants to keep playing with Papaw or as Gabbie calls me, "Babaw." I led her to her room, and I closed the door. Even though she can get up from her bed and wander around her room, she cannot open her door from inside her bedroom because of the child-proof door knob covering.
I sat in the living room by the baby monitor, which allows me to see what's going on in her room. Gabbie can be entertaining to watch at nap time and bed time.
At 1:10 p.m., Gabbie sat on the edge of her bed crying or whining. Frustrated.
Sometimes, Gabbie will lie in her bed with her legs hanging out of the bed and her feet resting on the floor. Sometimes, she gets up and goes to the window and plays with the curtains that are drawn shut. Sometimes, she tries to open the door that leads out of her room. Sometimes, she sings. Eventually, she gets too tired and lies down in bed.
At 1:20 p.m., Gabbie was quiet. When little to no noise and/or motion is detected, the monitor goes off or the screen goes blank. I think that she fell asleep around 1:20 p.m.
Normally, Gabbie's afternoon nap last around 90 minutes, sometimes longer. But not today.
At 2:20 p.m., Gabbie awoke. She speaks loudly, or whines loudly. She's ready to get on with the rest of her day.
I entered Gabbie's room. She's happy to see me. After her nap, I give Gabbie a bottle of milk and some snacks. The climbs up into the recliner in the living room. She brought with her from her bedroom her Fab Four items: blanket, baby doll, and two elephant things. She placed the Fab Four items with her in the recliner. She ate her snacks and drank her milk while we watched some TV. Her long curly hair was a humorous, ruffled mess, piled high. That would have been a great photo.
In recent months, I like to watch with Gabbie kids shows, such as Monsters Inc., Shrek, Boss Baby, and Sing. WE watch those movies because I enjoy them too.
In 2017 and 2018, we watched Moana, Home, Trolls, Mulan, and others. I watch the Bee Movie when Gabbie naps. She disinterested in that movie.
We have also watched Despicable Me and Transylvania Hotel 3 and I'm sure others too.
Lately, Gabbie likes The Little Mermaid. And one of her favorites in recent months is Frozen. Rhonda, Deb, and Catherine took Gabbie to see Frozen on Ice back in December in downtown Toledo. Gabbie like to sing the main Frozen song that Elsa sings. "Let it go." It's interesting how kids like that song.
At 2:53 p.m., we were back downstairs again. Gabbie placed the Barbie Frozen castle toy pices back into the downstairs tent. We played in the tent and with other toys and things in the downstairs area for a while.
Catherine joined us in the downstairs area. We watched Despicable Me, or Catherine and I watched it while Gabbie played. Gabbie does not focus long on movies, which is good. She would rather play.
At 4:15 p.m., Gabbie played with the DVDs again after I had placed them back onto the shelves.
I took notes in a small pocket notebook that I kept in my flannel shirt breast pocket. Gabbie likes to take the notebook from my shirt and click the ballpoint pen and scribble in my notebook. And then she tried placing the pen and notebook down her shirt. She watches how I store the notebook in my shirt pocket, and she thought that she could do something similar by placing the notebook and pen down her shirt. Funny. That was the first time that I had seen her try that.
It was the summer of 2017 when Gabbie first took my pen and began scribbling in my notebook with some guidance from me.
Around 5pm, we went upstairs to eat. Catherine assembled Gabbie's dinner, but Gabbie did not eat much. She wanted to play, and back downstairs we went after her meal.
Gabbie no longer likes to be strapped into the booster chair to eat. When she eats at the dining room table, she wants to sit in a chair like adults. She climbs up onto the chair seat and sits or kneels on the chair and eats that way. As long as she eats, we don't care how she sits at the table. She's growing up fast, and she wants to do grown-up things, of course.
We played downstairs. I like to throw a small soft ball around with Gabbie on the steps.
Deb arrived around 6pm, and Gabbie was excited to see her. Deb and Catherine were headed out for pedicure and/or manicures and dinner. Deb played with Gabbie on the steps, throwing the ball with her. But Deb and Catherine left, shortly after Deb arrived, and Gabbie was miffed. She wanted to go too, and after Catherine and Deb left, Gabbie picked up a pair of Brad's shoes and throw them down. She was mad. I left that shoe area and went back to the play area downstairs.
Gabbie got over her peeved-ness and we played some more. And then we snuggled in the downstairs recliner. Gabbie's Fab Four items were downstairs. Gabbie brought them down and she piled them onto me in the recliner. And then Gabbie piled the Barbie Frozen castle toy pieced on my lap too. All this stuff piled on my lap as I sat on the recliner. And then Gabbie climbed up onto the recliner to snuggle beside me. I get having her Fab Four bedtime items, but why the other stuff too?
Gabbie relaxed and got quiet in the recliner with me. We watched TV. I dozed off a bit. It was too cozy, like a cat falling asleep on me.
Gabbie normally goes to bed in the evening around 7pm. I knew that it was later than that. When I finally dug my phone out of my pants front pocket, I saw that the time was 7:12 p.m. Oops. But we were having quiet time.
At 7:15 p.m., I went upstairs to get Gabbie a bottle of milk and a snack. I changed her diaper downstairs. I gave Gabbie at least three diaper changes while I visited.
We snacked and relaxed a bit more downstairs, and then I ushered Gabbie upstairs for bed time.
At 7:38 p.m., I assisted Gabbie to her bedroom. I said goodbye. She will wave by and blow kisses sometimes. She goes to bed easier than she takes a nap.
I watched Gabbie from the living room via the baby monitor. At 7:50 p.m., she was quiet, asleep. She was wiped out. It was grand day with my Granddaughter.
Brad arrived home from work around 8:30 p.m. He said that Deb and Catherine were going to be out a while longer. I left for home.
Two days earlier, Deb and I watched Gabbie in the afternoon and evening while Catherine and Brad went out for dinner and a movie. We wore Gabbie out playing inside. In the evening before bed time, Gabbie snuggled up against me on the couch, and she fell asleep on me. Brad scooped her up and took her to bed.
That's only the third time that Gabbie has fallen asleep on me over the past 18 months. That's one of those things that I miss about Gabbie growing up. During her first year, it was common for Gabbie to fall asleep on us at nap time and bed time.
She fell asleep on me in late October 2017 when it was nap time.
Then she fell asleep on me last August (2018) when we hosted Gabbie for the weekend, and it was during our garage sale weekend with our neighbors. Gabbie woke up early on a Saturday morning around 5:00 a.m., and she was banging on our piano at 5:30 a.m. She played hard in the afternoon, especially around dinner time when we were breaking down our garage sale. She ran around on neighbor's back driveway, and multiple times, I let her climb up the ladder to the second story of our neighbor's garage with me on the ladder with her. That evening, we snuggled in the chair before bed time, but she zonked out on me. Eventually, I carried her to portable bed setup in the computer room.
And then she fell asleep on me on Sun, Mar 24, 2019.