Monday, November 18, 2013

S is for Slow, Saturday, Sunday and Shy

Stitch by stitch the blue yarn is becoming a blanket.  It covers my lap, warm and soft.

We have had a lazy Saturday and a slow Sunday.

The kiddos are on a train ride to California.  Every chair in the house in a straight line.  Lamb and Tiger, doll and bear, Ivory and Sylvan passengers in one giant adventure. Sylvan drives. Ivory serves tea. Ivory drives. Sylvan is the caboose.



I knit. I dream. I observe. I think. I remember.

I picture myself crouched down, peering into Ivory's face, my arms wrapped around a tiny Sylvan and scolding her: "When someone tells you that your hair is pretty, you say thank you.  When somebody says Hi to you, you say hi back.  You are being rude when you just ignore people."
She looks back at me with tears in her eyes: " But Mama, I'm shy."


I was exasperated.  I couldn't imagine that my little girl who seems to have no problem approaching strangers, dominating other mother's laps and leading gangs of children around had any shy in her.
"No Ivory, that was not being shy.  Ignoring people is rude."
I'm frustrated.  I feel like I am somehow failing at teaching proper social graces.  That this somehow defines me as a bad mom.

She still meets stranger's complements at best with complete disregard and at worst with a stare that should send the complement giver hiding in the nearest hole.  I no longer reprimand her. We have talks about saying hi back to friends, and about other folks feelings, but with strangers I smile and say thank you and we move on.

A few days ago we had our first parent teacher conference.
Her marks are great, with only one discrepancy.  Ms. F points it out and says: You can see she tested a little low here, but I'm not worried.  I know she can do these things, but she was tested by a stranger, and she is really shy."

Wait.

What?

She is SHY?

SHE is shy?

She IS shy.

We have been moving through our world in a bubble.  A bubble filled with me, and Adam, and Sylvan and a handful of friends and kids of friends and in that world Ivory reigns supreme. She is bold and confident, her thoughts and words pouring out of her like a waterfall.

I had no idea.

I should have noticed, or rather, I should have understood what I did notice.  Those strangers that approach, even if it is only for a quick complement (usually her hair), infringe on our sphere uninvited. She ignores them.  She stares them down.  She silently asks them why they invaded her space.

She is shy.  She told me so herself.

The train has reached it's destination.  The sofa has exploded into a fort.  The living room into a field of blankets.  This bubble is safe and warm and filled with love and it is perfectly fine to be choosy about who gets to come inside.



Lazy Saturday Egg-Less Muffins 

(there is no way I am going to the store to get eggs) 

1 1/2 cups white flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups apple juice 
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup of oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 small apples
1/2 cup finely chopped Walnuts (I have to hide them from Ivory) 
  • preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  • grease a 12-cup muffin pan
  • combine dry ingredients
  • add wet ingredients
  • stir in the apples and walnuts
  • divide evenly between muffin cups
  • bake or 25 to 30 minutes
  • cool for 5 minutes and then remove from the pan









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