We Don't Need No Stinkin' Milestones

One week ago, Thalia was a baby. A little creature whose only purpose in life was to make people smile, make them laugh, maybe wave on cue.

In one week, things have changed. And changed drastically.

The turning point was dinner last week at a trendy Santa Monica establishment called Sushi Roku, which is Japanese for place where many surgically enhanced blondes eat overpriced spicy tuna rolls. Our little we-can-take-her-anywhere daughter, our what-a-good-flyer-she-is-you -hardly-notice-her-on-the-plane girl, our I-know-you-wish-yours-was-as-perfect-but-can't-win-'em-all offspring learned to shriek.


Hello, attractive table of LA actors with very white teeth, do you like the sound of my daughter's shriek during your seared ahi appetizer? Because if you missed it, she'd be delighted to repeat it, only exponentially louder.

Ah, there it is. Enjoy your sake. Try the enoki tempura, it's fabulous.

One week ago, Thalia was a girl to be looked at. Now she's a girl to be watched. She goes into drawers and takes whatever was in the drawer out of the drawer. She takes whatever was in the diaper bag out of the diaper bag. She takes whatever was in the trashcan out of the trashcan. And then bangs on the trashcan. And then, when we're not looking, probably puts the entire thing into her mouth.

And while one would generally be thrilled to walk into a hotel room with a real live Jacuzzi tub up three tiled steps right next to the bed, a couple with an 11 month-old who's just learned to climb steps is only slightly less thrilled.

Thank you, twenty (20) in-laws. Thank you for being here this week and helping me tame the toddler that has inhabited the shell of my infant daughter.

Or wait, maybe it's just temporary? Tell me it's just temporary. Judging from the number of churches down in North Carolina, I'm sure I could find an exorcist.


Blogger T. said...

Sorry to burst your bubble but she has only begun her demon-like ways. Soon she will progress into a Britney-loving, eyeball-rolling girl-demon who you will love without abandon.

6/5/06, 10:55 AM  
Anonymous dorf said...

Isn't this fun? Thalia will continually test your limits of 'whatever', go-with-the-flow, progressive ideals you may have had in your head. But think of it this way: you will never run out of stories and plot lines. The trick it to never, never, never take it personally!

Besides, I think she was really telling you to bring her home!

6/5/06, 11:01 AM  
Blogger Marie said...

It's temporary that she's a little curious & doing a little lung-testing. Next, she'll be more curious & do different kinds of lung-testing.. Oh yes. The fun begins!

6/5/06, 11:18 AM  
Blogger something blue said...

She's a "look-at-me I'm entertaining you as I explore and test my vocal styles." Did you hear that? Did you see that? Oh yes Thalia, you're a Big Girl now!

Just remind yourself in public that the odds of running into the same surgically enhanced blondes are rare. Do they even have the capacity to form thought anyway?

6/5/06, 11:33 AM  
Anonymous madge said...

Honeymoon's over, baby. Welcome to toddlerhood.


6/5/06, 12:32 PM  
Anonymous misha said...

I remember the first time this happened to us in a Mexican restaraunt. I think I went grey overnight. Like Bonnie Rait.

6/5/06, 12:35 PM  
Anonymous krista said...

I feel your pain. My little cute baby is crawling now and on the war path too- much to the dismay of my beautiful books that are consistently being pulled off and put back on the shelves.

6/5/06, 12:44 PM  
Blogger wordgirl said...

Are you sure Thalia wasn't seated just ahead of me on the plane back from the B-List Blogfest??? That was some serious shrieking! But she wasn't as cute as Thalia.

6/5/06, 12:58 PM  
Blogger jennster said...

she is getting so big! LOL.. that's funny.. kids shriek. it happens.

6/5/06, 1:27 PM  
Blogger Never That Easy said...


What a great post! You captured the change from baby to little girl/gray hair supplier so well!

I could tell you it's just temporary... but I don't like to lie.

6/5/06, 1:52 PM  
Blogger R. Sherman said...

My daughter was fine. The official son was the one who climbed onto the kitchen counter, hid under the bathroom sink, and ate bugs when we went on picnics.

He was a good flyer though.

Have fun.


6/5/06, 3:42 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I love the picture. Do you say to her, So Big? Welcome to the world of toddlers. Aren't they fun? Keep taking her to places though. She will eventually learn to eat without shieking. Most of them only do it for awhile, it's like they just realize they have a voice and are determined to put it to good use.

You were at Sushi Roku? We go there a lot. Was that your shrieking kid....hmmm, maybe it was mine. :)

6/5/06, 3:43 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I love the picture. Do you say to her, So Big? Welcome to the world of toddlers. Aren't they fun? Keep taking her to places though. She will eventually learn to eat without shieking. Most of them only do it for awhile, it's like they just realize they have a voice and are determined to put it to good use.

You were at Sushi Roku? We go there a lot. Was that your shrieking kid....hmmm, maybe it was mine. :)

6/5/06, 3:43 PM  
Anonymous reluctant housewife said...


You too! Welcome to the club! Al-A-Shriekers.

6/5/06, 4:06 PM  
Anonymous mothergoosemouse said...

The shrieking persists until it turns into whining. Sorry to disappoint.

6/5/06, 4:20 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

My son STILL likes to shriek. He'll be 4 in a few days!

And if you find a good exorcist, pass them on to me!

6/5/06, 5:20 PM  
Anonymous Ashley said...

There's no turning back now! Just wait until she can say "No Momma!" That's truly fun! But on the up side, not long after she will say "You look pretty, Momma!" That's why we keep them instead of trying to sell them on EBay when they turn 13.

BTW, I thought you lived in LA, based on my comment to the last post. Still NYC puts several states between you and the in-laws.

6/5/06, 6:07 PM  
Blogger lildb said...

if you find that toddler-exhuming exorcist, please email me. as a woman with about half of the contents of her kitchen currently strewn about the entire lower portion of her house, I don't ask for this.

I. Beg.

6/5/06, 7:16 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

It's all part of the long slow march to independence.

Having fun yet?

6/5/06, 7:43 PM  
Anonymous Motherhood Uncensored said...

You'll wake up tomorrow and she'll be trying to sneak money out of your wallet.

Mine does that now and she's 2.

Beware. And nothing wrong with a good exorcism. They love those down my way. That and dancing with snakes while speaking in tongues.

Good times.

6/5/06, 7:45 PM  
Anonymous j said...

Oh lordie. Wait until she's 12, with a body to stop traffic and a smart ass attitude. :) It gets *so* much more fun...

6/5/06, 8:50 PM  
Blogger Waya said...

My 15 month old daughter's first word was "mamee" and the next one was "NO" with the shaking head to go with it!

I'm in trouble now! But my husband loves it because he said that's a good word she needs to say to any future boys. Hullo, she's only 15 months old!!

6/5/06, 9:26 PM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

But when you're faced with that cuteness...? Doesn't a little shrieking and trash-can play seem a small price?


(Gawd. I was so hoping that the cute would forever blunt the rough edges of childhood...)

6/5/06, 9:33 PM  
Blogger Refinnej said...

I should email you the Toddler Rules. It's a nice primer for ages 1 through 3.

6/5/06, 10:55 PM  
Blogger Mega Mom said...

My Dad always used to tell me never to judge other people's children. I never listened until my first son turned 1 or so. I shoulda listened :)

6/5/06, 11:16 PM  
Blogger EvaRob said...

Love this...we need a playdate...I know Sushi Roku well...wouldn't dare take my little ones there...haha

6/6/06, 12:01 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

She's so cute! She looks like she's thinking that she knows just how cute she is!

After having two boys, I am amazed at how much more higher pitched Kaitlyn's screeching is. Must be a girl thing.

6/6/06, 12:25 AM  
Anonymous Nila said...

Yeah, it's temporary. Atleast until the next "exciting" phase begins.
Just when you get control over this, it'll be on to newer and bigger things for the very cute Thalia.

6/6/06, 1:06 AM  
Blogger Mary-LUE said...

Hey Mom-101... Good to see you over at "my place." My kids are older and one thing I realized is that phases seem much, much, much longer when you are going through them than they actually are. So, maybe this shrieking phase will only last a few weeks or months. It will feel like years until years have gone by like a blink of the eye, then you'll hardly remember them.

She is such a cutie, surely it will be a short phase. . . maybe invest in some ear plugs, just in case!

6/6/06, 1:20 AM  
Blogger Mel said...

Oh, it's not that long. Just eighteen years.
Actually, from the long view over here (one's twelve and the other's seven), that shrieking thing is relatively quick. Buck up, little camper; you'll make it to the top.

6/6/06, 2:09 AM  
Blogger Kevin Charnas said...

Are you sure that Janice Joplyn didn't move in when you weren't looking??

6/6/06, 2:11 AM  
Blogger MommyWithAttitude said...

I wish I could be the barer of glad tidings, but the most encouraging thing I can say about the shrieking is I don't remember it being as annoying as listening to TWO toddlers shrieking at each other.

6/6/06, 2:42 AM  
Anonymous Jenny said...

Wow. Be lucky you got 11 months of quiet out of her. Hailey was an angel baby until 10 months. Now she's the most explororific (my own word), independent nutjob out there. Thank goodness she's so adorable.

6/6/06, 6:40 AM  
Anonymous MetroDad said...

I'm feelin ya right now. Our little one just turned into the reincarnation of Sybil this past week.

6/6/06, 9:09 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

I'll be brutally honest - it doesn't get any easier from here on out. She will never again be the little girl that just sits there and people look at. She will demand to be heard and will take pleasure in exploring everything with no regard for danger or your wishes.

But there's an upside, too. She'll soon start expressing herself in new ways, and there's nothing like your toddler showing you how much she loves you. She'll drive you to drink, but she'll melt your heart, too. It's a big rollercoaster now, but it really is fun.

6/6/06, 9:16 AM  
Blogger So-Called Supermom said...

Welcome to the world of the toddler. Quiet dinners where you and the hubby can talk without having food thrown on the floor or shrieking? Not any more!!! Grocery store trips that are just as productive as pre-baby trips? Nope. Not with a toddler running through the store with you!

But, now she will start to talk and express ideas and opinions and wow...its just soo amazing!

6/6/06, 9:32 AM  
Blogger macboudica said...

Just wait until she discovers how much fun water play in the toilet is!

6/6/06, 9:48 AM  
Blogger Oh, The Joys said...

Forget the exorcist. Go Pentecostal and maybe someone can speak in tongues WITH her. (You thought community college and / or Iraq were taboo - what would the Jewish community say to Thalia at the Pentecostal Church!)

6/6/06, 10:20 AM  
Blogger movin'mom said...

The next time she decides to let out a huge shriek -IMAGINE- that she is in a board room with a lot of highly paid exec's and is speaking her mind without intimidation...or that she's 16 in a car with a boy and has decided to shriek NO without intimidation...As long as she remembers not to bite that hand that feeds her meaning ma & pa we should all celebrate the strength in Thalia's shreik!!! So next time get the sushi to go and picnic in Central Park! GIRL POWER

6/6/06, 10:31 AM  
Blogger shannon said...

Yes, I think what all the people who spent all the time when you were pregnant telling you about how hard the first year is neglected to mention one important fact. Year two is HARDER. That's my theory anyway. Our easy baby is getting less easy by the milisecond. It's a good thing too because I was just thinking it might be good to start on kid two. Maybe that's the evolutionary reason for the rapid onslaught of crazy.

6/6/06, 10:50 AM  
Blogger Lisa Stone said...

>Sushi Roku, which is Japanese for place where many surgically enhanced blondes eat overpriced spicy tuna rolls.

Poor Thalia. I know -- the sight of all those baremidriffs can be so upsetting.

6/6/06, 12:20 PM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

I went out to sushi once with my son who is 11 mos. The key is to go to a sushi joint with REALLY loud music. You won't be able to carry on a conversation during dinner that well, but you also won't have to worry about the shrieking. And they will shriek at some point. Guaranteed.

6/6/06, 12:28 PM  
Blogger sunshine scribe said...

Temporary. Yes. But it gets replaced with even more fabulous milestones not to be missed by the surgically enhanced blondes eating sushi.

In her defense, Sushi can be a little shriek-worthy at times...

6/6/06, 12:44 PM  
Anonymous chelle said...

hehe it is totally temporary!!! It gets better and then suddenly you can reason with them!!!

6/6/06, 1:27 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Oh, the memories you're invoking. The trash can. That kept me up at night. That and the little bits of wood from our firewood basket.

These moments of exploration, while stressful because WHAT'S GOING TO BE EXPLORED NEXT!?!?!? are also little windows into their world, while they are learning this one for the first time. It's fascinating to watch.

The shrieking is temporary. Our little one only did it for a week. By that age, he knew what "no no" meant and boy did we say "no no" after the shrieks. Enough with the shrieks! But it is temporary. And didn't take long to get over either. But mine's a boy. I've heard girls like the shrieking a lot longer.

6/6/06, 1:36 PM  
Blogger Pattie said...

Perhaps being surrounded by blonde bombshells eating sushi enticed her...she yelled out loud what many of the adults were thinking! :0

6/6/06, 1:53 PM  
Blogger Stephanie A. said...

You can't be serious? Shrieking?

There go our trips to the local sushi spot with Hugo. We'd better start going daily until he turns 11 months.

6/6/06, 3:00 PM  
Blogger Carrcakes said...

The shrieking cracks me up. Is it joyful shrieking or texas chain saw massacre shrieking? Maybe it's time for Thalia to take a crack at show-biz.

6/6/06, 3:01 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

Have you lost any weight-- I mean sanity-- from chasing her about and keeping her from killing herself? Because I lost a little of both when my daughter was that age. Oh mercy.

6/6/06, 3:29 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I feel your pain. That's all I'm saying...

6/6/06, 4:25 PM  
Blogger Stacy said...

It aint over lady. It's called the terrible twos. Nobody ever tells you they really start around age one and a half.

6/6/06, 4:35 PM  
Blogger Terri B. said...

Just keep her out of the wasabi or you'll hear real shrieking!

6/6/06, 4:47 PM  
Blogger toyfoto said...

Oh my ... it gets better and then it gets worse. It's all a part of the rollercoaster ride.

6/6/06, 4:58 PM  
Blogger gingajoy said...

ha!!! you need to equip yourself with a babyleash. STAT!! ;-)

6/6/06, 5:01 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

She looks so much like you!

6/6/06, 5:04 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

Oh, the shriek is my favorite. It's one of the only ways my son communicates and people just looooove us! :)

Don't worry, as she starts to talk, she's stop shrieking. Sometimes.

Try this (it worked with my perfect, don't you wish she was yours daughter): Everytime she shrieks, respond with a whisper. She'll be so intrigued with with whisper, she'll want to do it herself!!

6/6/06, 5:11 PM  
Blogger Binky said...

My July baby is doing the same things now. Funny story: I was out one night while my husband fed her dinner and I came home to him engaging in a little baby-play time before bed. We're there laughing at her cuteness, which makes her laugh, which causes her mouth to open, revealing some big white mass. "What the heck is that?" I did a finger sweep through her oral cavity and came up with a piece of newspaper. "Oh," my husband said. "I went in the kitchen to warm her food and when I came back she had the newspaper. I thought she was reading it. I guess not." I don't know if that's as funny in writing as it was when he said it, but there it is.

6/6/06, 6:09 PM  
Blogger Jodi said...

UM no. This stage won't pass. :) Put on your running shoes, darlin'.

6/6/06, 7:57 PM  
Blogger carrie said...

Nothing more to add here, except that I have been there (still there with a 2 1/2 yr. old) and I can honestly say that I believe if there were an Olympic sport of shreiking, the girls would DEFINITELY win!

6/6/06, 8:02 PM  
Blogger EmilyRoseJewel said...

Oh man, I can relate. Justice has done his share of yelling. He yells to hear his own voice for fun a lot. I look at my husband and say "Yep, we are those parents, you know the ones where we used to say, 'Why can't they control their child." Oh well, that is just to be expected.

6/6/06, 9:29 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

Why is it that the girl babies bound into toddlerhood so much quicker than they should? You think you have another month or two before you have to deal with the tantrums and then - Wham! They're toddlers without the benefit of the damn toddling. WTF?

6/6/06, 9:49 PM  
Blogger Stefanie said...

Wow, I wouldn't even attempt Sushi Roku with my baby and I live here! That place is not meant for children, brunettes or anyone over 30. And that goes double for the hosts.

6/6/06, 11:10 PM  
Blogger Jess Riley said...

Oh, but look at that darling girl!

6/6/06, 11:29 PM  
Anonymous kvetch said...

Your baby is growing up. SNIFF SNIFF!

6/7/06, 12:46 AM  
Blogger wolfbaby said...

ohh man I wrote a post on that in my blog awhile ago it was about changlings LOL I so feel your pain!!!

6/7/06, 12:23 PM  
Anonymous Nancy said...

We have a similar model -- the toddler who will sit in the car for an extended road trip without so much as a peep, then when you get into a restaurant or public place she will shriek, throw things, etc.

And with respect to this week's vacation, we have grandparents, and aunt and uncle, and a BABYSITTER who we are paying to help us avoid all the pitfalls in the beach house (think swimming pool, no baby gates or locks, fragile objects) and still J and I end up chasing her all day. Do you think you could lend me a couple of your in-laws?

6/7/06, 9:02 PM  
Anonymous Gurukarm Kaur said...

You know that thing about the terrible twos? don't let 'em fool ya, hon - they last anywhere from before one to way past three. Sorry. :-) (DD's still going strong - at 18; DS lasted til about a year or so ago. He's 12 1/2 now. >snicker< )


6/7/06, 10:02 PM  
Anonymous sweatpantsmom said...

I was at Sushi Roku last week. I would have welcomed the sound of Thalia's screams over the vapid conversation taking place at the table next to me, one which caused even my seven-year old to exclaim, "What a bunch of airheads." (And whatta ya know - they were surgically enhanced blondes.)

6/8/06, 4:34 AM  
Anonymous JGS said...

This is the begining of a new shift in your relationship. Sure, becomes more difficult and challenging, but she learns to communicate and you get to watch your little girl's brain develop every single day, how she learns new things, new words, new hand motions, how to relate to others, what she likes and doesn't like.

My Okapis just took a big developmental step in the past week and are creating stories off the top of their heads. Seeing your children grow and develop as people...I...I can't quite explain it...There is nothing like it in the world..It is like no feeling I could possibly describe. You are going to love it SO MUCH (despite all of the crap that comes along with it)! And I can't wait to hear about it on your site.

6/8/06, 5:45 AM  
Anonymous Izzy said...

It would appear that our children are at roughly the same stage of development.

Trash-can digging? Check!

Cabinet/drawer/diaper bag emptying? Check!

Shrieking? Check!

6/8/06, 10:10 AM  
Blogger a witt said...

This actually makes me feel a bit better about your excellent luck with the perfect in-laws. Noooo, I'm not bitter!


P.S. And if that is indeed the way it works, my kids, in the future, are going to be PERFECT.

6/9/06, 6:01 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home