stuff Morella likes.

Current things that are Morella’s faves:

  • Ferris wheels
  • Blind bag toys
  • Hidden picture puzzles (Where’s Waldo, etc.)
  • Putting on puppet shows for her baby sister
  • Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir on Netflix
  • Chocolate ice cream
  • Swimming (the indoor pool on vacation was her raison d’être)
  • Jacobi (her friend from school)
  • Watermelon (mass quantities)
  • Correcting you on the proper name of each My Little Pony
  • Having raspberries blown on her belly (she asks to have this done; it is hilarious)
  • Popsicles (pronounced “popsills”)
  • “Arranging” (rearranging) the furniture in her dollhouse
  • Picking flowers for others every time she sets foot outside
  • Fish sticks
  • Asking if we’re going to the beach pretty much every day, regardless of season
  • Ketchup on everything

People keep asking, “How does Morella like being a big sister?” and I think that’s a mixed bag. Sometimes she’s eager to be helpful, and happy to grab a toy or a wipe or anything else you need in the moment. But sometimes she has anguish over not being the main queen of the household, the person that everybody else is catering to 100% of the time. We’ve gone out of our way to cater to her plenty, and to set aside specific times just to do things she would like to do (going to Jumpology with Sabine one day, with no baby in tow, is one example). It’s an adjustment for her not to yell and stomp throughout the house when the baby is sleeping, or to do storytime exclusively with Matt a lot of nights when I’m nursing the baby. A lot of it is just plain consideration for others, a skill that most children her age simply haven’t mastered.

I try to remind her that when she was a little baby, I did all of these things for her: held her all the time, was quiet so she could rest, woke up in the night with her, nursed her constantly, etc. So we need to do all the same things for Cora, but it won’t be forever — she’ll get bigger and won’t need us to do everything for her anymore. We look at pictures of when she was a baby and talk about how she was cared for in all of these ways. She seems to understand, but then just as quickly she’ll jolt back into feeling overlooked and scream that she wants to do stuff “just me and you, without Cora.” This is understandable, but breaks my heart because (as I’ve noted) Cora won’t take a bottle still, so it’s pretty impossible for me to be separated from her.

I went to my book club this week for the first time in months and was away from the house for exactly 2 hours, and was nervous and jittery the whole time knowing that Cora might be screaming her head off at home (much-needed belly laughs and snacks with my friends notwithstanding). Morella being on visitation was the only thing that made it possible to go at all. But I still miss her sorely when she’s gone for the weekend. As we’ve gotten more of a handle on Cora’s issues (sorta. she’s napping okay anyway), it’s pretty quiet again on the weekends M isn’t here. And always feels like something’s missing. Her energy and silliness and vivacity and boisterousness and just downright kid-ness balance the otherwise calm and introverted spirit of the household, and are probably the reason why Cora’s eyes are glued to her unflinchingly whenever she’s around. ❤

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