Category Archives: otto and mette playing

Questions for cousin John

Just before eric and I headed down south for our little get away a special package came in the mail for the kids. As you know, STAR WARS rules the waves here these days. Mette has taken to calling herself Luke at all times. When the cashier at the grocery store who thinks she is cute asks her what her name is, the reply is “my name is Luke”. It gets some strange looks but I don’t bother explaining. She is often dressed head to toe in pink by her own choosing, so either they think she is a cross dresser, or they think she is coming up with strange names for herself. Either way, they can work on that. I have other things to do.
They still have not seen any of the movies. They get all of their knowledge, and let me tell you, it is a LOT, from books and asking eric and I a million plot questions daily. Otto knows every character, what they do etc… it is amazing. What I most like though is the way even though he is so interested in the plot, how his role playing of the stories follows his own narrative paths. Luke and Darth Maul have lunch together etc… He knows they can’t exist at the same time, he will even tell you who is from the prequels, but that doesn’t stop his imagination.
This past weekend we did have a bit of a break through. Eric cut a scene together where you see Anakin in the pod race. Otto and Mette have both watched it and LOVE it!! I keep telling Otto we should get daddy to make a scene with the Ewoks since I think he would really like that too. Despite the fact that he is all boy in the sense the every stick, lego, spoon etc.. is a “blaster” aka gun, he doesn’t actually want to see any fighting. Something I am very thankful for.
So back to the package. My cousin John recently moved to a new house and in getting ready for the move found a bunch of his old STAR WARS toys. Like Uncle Racer, he thought they might be well loved in the hands of Otto and Mette and kindly send them our way. My Aunt MaryAnn said we could give them all at once, or in pieces. I thought about spreading out the joy, but then the big box arrived and it looked like too much fun to pass up.
So, I let them open it themselves.

It was so much fun to watch then unwrap each well cared for and loved toy.

John, here is where I have a few questions for you. There is no doubt in my mind that you loved these toys very much. So much you may have even jumped for joy when you saw them the first time.
Perhaps you even hugged the battle droid and told it how much you loved it. Which by the way is what Otto did when he saw it.
But did you immediately feel that the light sabers were the right size to battle with Jenny (John’s younger sister) with? Otto did. He was kind enough to arm her first.
They also make great drumsticks, fyi.
But I am really wondering, did it ever cross your mind to ride the Tauntaun? Because Otto saddled that bad boy up immediately upon seeing it.
Then, of course, Mette had to have a turn.
So, needless to day, the gift has been a huge hit. A welcome addition to our already full family. It seems the Tauntaun in partial to jelly toast with his tea, in case you were wondering.

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Out we go

Into the land of the white stuff. With any luck there may not be too many (if any!) more big snow falls this season so it seemed wrong not to take the thirty minutes to bundle the kids up in snow pants, boots, jackets, mittens and hats and get out there and eat some snow. Or play in it, whatever suits your fancy. Otto is getting pretty good at getting his gear on himself which is super awesome. He can put on his snow pants and his boots and he can do the cool lay your coat on the ground, stick in your arms and flip it over your head trick. As long as I am there to keep him on task and help him do it in the right order (snow pants BEFORE snow boots, etc…) he can get ready himself. I do the mittens as that is really hard to do yourself. Mette needs me to do all of it but providing I can catch her and aren’t foolish enough to let go of her before she is geared up, she is pretty easy too. Then I just have to throw some boots and a jacket on and we are off. Do you have to pee yet? At this point one of us usually does.
Mette is old enough and big enough to get out in the snow and play this year, however with all of the snow gear it still seems a bit like she can’t really walk. A light breeze would blow her over. As a result she does not LOVE it like Otto does. But I can’t really blame her. Otto can now plow through anything all geared up.
Also, I know I am a bit biased, but seriously, is he not the handsomest kid ever?? WOW. He is going to break some hearts this boy. This mama better raise him right because I have the feeling he could and will do some serious damage.

Like I said, not entirely pleased with the whole operation.

Still very cute though.

Today was the first day we were outside in our own yard long enough to entertain the idea of a snowman. Usually we are out exploring. The snow was good snowman snow, but not awesome. I had hopes of a HUGE figure towering over the yard, but that was not in the cards today. I can’t wait until the kids start reading Calvin and Hobbes so we can have some really good snowman inspiration. Until then, this will have to do.

I was putting the scarf and hat on with Otto and turned around to find Mette without a jacket or mittens. I guess they were getting in her way so she took them off. She was cold a minute later so she headed inside for a snack. Super attentive parent that I am, I gave her a snack and headed back out with the camera to Otto and the snowman.

Since she has a pink scarf she is obviously and girl snowman. Since she is a girl she is one of two people (in the world of Otto) Princess Leia or Ashoko Tano. I suppose this snowwoman had a royal presence as she is was named Princess Leia right way. Otto did a lot of posing with her and telling me stories about their time together.
Here he is holding her hand.

And this is just to remind you, me, anyone who is reading that spring will be back and Friday was not just a dream. It is and will be a reality.
Tomorrow I will be back with stories of why Mette is now going to sleep in jammies that are zippered in every direction and why we might consider putting them on backwards!

Off to watch Top Gear with my boy.

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Less Talky, More Showy

In response to eric’s comment about all the chatter and no photos, I will provide only limited captions here. What follows are some highlights of 2011, so far.
Mette found a pair of flip flops she got a gift and insisted on wearing them around the house. The photo is blurry because she DOES NOT STOP MOVING EVER some days. She is also sporting her outfit of choice, undershirt and undies. It works well with the flip flops, very summery. The only draw back being our house is a very chilly 66 degrees, which does not seem to phase her at all.

I could do an entire post of photos taken at Otto’s request of him posing with Star Wars toys.
Before we headed off to Philly last weekend I deep cleaned the house so it would be nice when we returned. This included clean sheets for everyone’s beds. The kids hear me putting clean sheets on our bed and they come out of the wood work to roll around on the bed and mess it up.

The sheets by the way were a Christmas gift from me to eric. He is always cold so I broke down and got flannel sheets (I was worried I would be too hot) for the bed. They are actually really great. I made the duvet cover out of a flat sheet from another set and the flat sheet from this set. It is white cotton on one side and the snowflake flannel on the other. It is very cute and a simple winter pattern.

While wondering the Alice in Wonderland exhibit at the Please Touch Museum Otto was on the look out for Alice.
He was so excited when he found her. He wanted to stay and hang out with her for a while.
Otto REALLY, REALLY loves dress-up. He goes through about 6 outfit changes everyday as he imagines he is someone else. Vests for Han Solo, cape (hooded towel) for Jedi Master, cooking apron for Darth Vader, drivers suit for race car driver or astronaut and countless others. I spend the majority of my daily mental power remembering who he and Mette are at any given moment.

He was the only kid there who was putting on the gear and he had it all on, the shirt, the goggles, the gloves and the tool belt.
Mette found a small space with a bed and needed to pretend to be sleeping and waking up for a long time!
Getting Otto out of this outfit was much harder than getting him in it.


The very serious scientist.

Mette had a great time at the baby shower but the highlight was likely the chocolate covered oreo I let her eat in a total bribe to keep her in the highchair longer.
This year is off to a good start.

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The big day

Eric has commented, and i agree with him, that most of these do not need words. There will be much thoughtful stories later when children are sleeping, for now, enjoy the show….

digging in….

Some of the best $5 I ever spent is in her hand right there

Hello Kitty house!

Happiness is Hello Kitty chapstick, a Hello Kitty purse and a light saber.

Battling through the carnage.

Rudolf, note the red nose, styling in his new jammies.

Have I mentioned how awesome the blocks are?

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

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Washing Chewbacca

We bathe our children in our bathroom because we have a huge wonderful old tub in a room where every wall is covered in tile almost five feet up. It is perfect for splashing and sudsing. They take a bath together every night and despite the fact that they have plenty of room to spread out, they usually sit touching knees or backs the whole time. They really love taking baths together and the being right next to each other rarely ends in tears. I am touching everything wood while I write this. In fact they have started playing together a lot lately. They make up games and chase each other squealing with delight. It is the greatest thing ever.

Otto is obsessed with STAR WARS lately. He hasn’t seen the movie but he has some of my brothers old 12″ figures and lots of plot stories from Eric. He has given it his own twist, fx. in his role playing c3po and the stormtroopers are friends. Today I over heard this conversation while Luke and Obi-wan were chasing each other.

Obi-wan(mette)- Oh no, my light saber is broken
Luke(Otto)- that’s ok, I can fix it
Luke fixes K-Nex homemade light saber we now all carry
Obi-wan- thanks Luke

Running like crazy people continues

They are too much sometimes.

Last night in the bath Obi-wan (who is now Otto, you have to stay on your toes with the roll playing and who is who though Otto is quick to correct you) wanted to give Chewbacca (mette) a bath. Washing Otto every night is often a challenge as having water poured on him is more sensory input then he can often handle, Mette does not have this problem. I told him it was fine as long as Mette liked it.

She LOVED it.

She let him pour repeated bowls of water on her until she was soaked and laughing!

Even when the whole was dumped on her face, she was cool. I love how you can see Otto, I’m sorry, Obi-wan’s, tongue sticking out and a hint of the huge smile he had showing he was loving this too.

He then asked Chewie to stick out her tongue so her could make a waterfall.

She kindly obliged.

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As I mentioned before, I have been moving things around a lot here. My favorite is this old letter file that I moved piece by piece while the family slept from the third floor down to the first floor. It’s like it was made to be in our living room. Once I measured it I knew it belonged on this wall. On top is a great display of some old 16mm projectors of Eric’s along with the poster from the Library of Congress tour he hosted at the Campus Theatre when he owned it. It is signed by Janet Leigh. Too cool for school my boy is!

It took five days, but Mette figured out the the drawers open. I am working on organizing all of the drawers. Once I know what each one will hold I will print out labels for all of them. With period correct fonts of course!

Crayons, paper, all the bottom drawers are for her and Otto.

This new corner has become a favorite play place. I put an old phone on the table and they both love to sit their and make calls. Mette likes to call Argentina, good thing we aren’t paying for that!

The curtain fabric is a trial but I think I need to go get more and turn it into curtains. It has movie tickets, how could I pass it up?

The kids got little pumpkins at market today and drew faces on them when we got home.

Mette saw the flash and came running. “I say CHEESE!!!”

George has been getting a lot of lovin’ lately.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

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Morning light

This morning I took advantage of two kids in a great mood, fabulous light in the kitchen and Mette sporting a particularly fantastic outfit courtesy of my mom to shoot some great photos of them. It has been a while since I caught them just enjoying themselves on camera. They actually even stood next to each other when I asked them to and looked at the camera. It may never happen again so check it out now!

He wanted a picture of him “smiling like a soccer player”. Here it is:

She started jumping and yelling “go git ’em” over and over again.

So of course Otto started jumping.

Squeals of laughter over finding Otto.

Mette, watch this….

I can do it too.

That’s my girl.


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