Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Music! With! Mommy!

We started music class last week. Zoey seems to enjoy music so in an attempt to regain some ground in the Mother of the Year contest, I signed us up for some Music!! With!! Mommy!! classes. This is not what the class is really called, but it should be. The class is run by Ms. Sound of Music, who also happens to be a former Beauty-Something-Something of the South. She dresses in the same chic uniform as all the other moms and young, hot, international nannies in the class: form fitting yoga pants, coordinated with a tank top and form fitting hoodie. Ms. Sound of Music has perfect hair, a perfect voice, and perfect teeth. We do get to see a lot of her teeth, what with all the smiling! Smiling! Smiling! Now to be clear, I do appreciate a certain level of perkiness and positive energy from people who work with kids. But after an hour of this class I feel the need to dress all in black and listen to The Wall while contemplating which would be more painful: digging my beating heart out of my chest with a plastic spoon or going to ten more classes.

We start class with the welcome song. We welcome the babies, the mommies, and the nannies. Once there was a granddad and we welcomed him. We sing and clap to songs about horses, about splashing, about rowing boats. We sing one song that goes: Who’s that tapping at the window? Who’s that knocking at the door? Mom-eee is tapping at the window. Dad-eee is knocking at the door.’ This makes me wonder who the hell is inside with the baby. I picture some poor baby sitting forlornly in the middle of the floor while her dumb ass parents tap and knock at the window after they locked themselves out of the house. Not a very comforting song if you ask me. Although I do feel a little smug when we sing this song because locking ourselves out with Zoey inside is something we have yet to do.

Often while we sing we are supposed to rock our bodies and tap our babies to the beat. Once we did an interpretive scarf dance. I was ok at the scarf dance but I can’t find the beat to save my life. As an aside, I think I am also tone deaf which accounts for my terrible voice. I have to look at what others are doing and mirror their movements. For one instrumental song at the end of class all the caretakers and babies get instruments and we have to try and bang out the beat on our maracas, tambourines, little drums or whatever. Zoey and I always try to sit next to Thorton and his nanny for this part. Thorton always wails on whatever instrument he has and yells at the top of his lungs, thus disguising any poor rhythmic attempt on our part. But this last class I made a fatal error. I picked a tambourine for myself. Yes, I picked an instrument that makes noise, loud noise, even if you just move it a little bit. The jig was up. Ms. Sound of Music even came and sat next to us and cheerily whispered, "Let's try and stay on beat!." When she realized we (I guess I should say "I" so as not to give my 8 month old a musical complex) were trying, Ms. Sound of Music's smile flickered for a moment. She then rapidly moved on to another pair that were doing well with their drum and shaker. Ms. Sound of Music did not make eye contact with us for the goodby song.

Never the less, my daughter and I left class and walked out the parking lot with our heads held high. We listened to Ani on the way home (I can’t subject Zoey to Pink Floyd just yet) and made plans for a dance party in our living room where we can sing and shake our booties without being judged and without having to hide behind Thorton. Nine more classes to go and we can enroll in a gymbaby class. Bring on the big colorful parachute and the cushy tumbling mats!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Baby Talk

I get a little jealous when Zoey laughs too much with other people (i.e - Gramme, Dada, her little baby friends). I would really prefer that she think I am the funniest and prettiest of everyone. I mean, clearly I am the most amusing person in the baby's life -- what with the potty sounds I can make, the bad whistling, the zerberts, and the witty songs I make up. But Zoey has been laughing at the dog a lot lately too though. Like when he licks her feet or the one time he allowed her to suck on his nose. Now that I think about it, her sense of humor may not be fully developed yet so who is she to judge me anyway?

I do think she has a highly developed brain though -- I can see her thinking all kinds of thoughts, she just can't share them out loud yet. When I take too long too put on her onesie because I can't get her arm to bend into the sleeve hole I can almost hear her sigh and say, "Are you kidding me with this? 4 minutes to put on a shirt? maybe you need to go back to remedial parenting classes. I have things to do woman!!! Hurry up!" She waves her fist in the air and does her baby growl.

But yet when my husband (the beloved Dada) takes 20 minutes to put her in her PJ's (and they end up on backwards with a pacifier and a peed on sock trapped inside) she looks up at him admiringly. She bats her eye lashes and thinks, "Awww. What a good Dad. You tried sooooo hard. You'll do better next time." She hugs him around the neck and pats his back with her chubby little baby fingers. I roll my eyes. She looks at me over her Dad's shoulder and sticks out her pink tongue, which may be the baby equivalent of the finger, and thinks, "What are you looking at? I'll deal with you later." She then resumes her charming gurgling and laughing for her dad. "Isn't she the best baby ever?" my husband gushes and he isn't one to gush. He repositions her so she is cradled in his arms. While he watches the Red Sox's play the Yankees, I watch the baby rub her palms back and forth while she looks at me through narrowed eyes, plotting.