On Tuesday morning, I had yet another altercation with the woman that watches Mari. This was similar to the lecture I received the Monday before, and the Monday before that. Afterwards, I immediately called my father seeking guidance and reassurance. I was visibly disturbed and decided that enough was enough. I'm so very glad that my mother was feeling up to par, because he put her on a plane and Mom was happily cuddling and holding Mari in her arms by that evening. I love watching her with her grandmothers and how she just goes with the flow and enjoys their companionship. That afternoon when I'd picked up Mari to take her to the doctor so we could get cream for the eczema, I exchanged some words with the daycare provider that despite me holding back, I would not say was a prouder moment of my life. I don't like being that curt with someone that I respect, but when they lash out at you too much, you just have to put your foot down and assert yourself regardless of how much more "experience" (or age) they have than you. I won't repeat the details, but needless to say, I walked out on her while she continued talking because I was done listening.
Tuesday night began the hunt/research for a new place. I did a lot of praying and reflecting. I normally do some praying, but I actually turned my phone off and prayed long and hard about it all. I constructed a list of all of my wants for Mari based on how I know her. Of course, you want someone who loves and cares for her, but more than that, I know she's a social child and I want her to have peers to interact with. I want her to learn and be exposed to new things everyday. I want her to freely explore her surroundings and learn how to share, cooperate, listen, and imagine. I don't want a television monopolizing her time like it did at her old school. I want her to respect adults, not fear them. I want her to feel safe. I want her to be happy to go to school, but happy to see us at the end of the day. I want to proudly display her artwork on my fridge. I want her to grow her relationship with God and understand the importance of praying before a meal and being thankful for it. I want her to know cleanliness and hand washing.
Yesterday, I called two places and this morning we've settled on one after both Don and I visited. We're both very happy with what they offer, it is very close to our home, the hours are the same, she'll be around 6 other kiddos her age, she'll be in a positive learning environment with a curriculum, playing all day long, and she will be introduced to Christianity on an age-appropriate level. There is a low teacher to student ratio (1:4) and one of the teacher's in her class is Asian and I'm going to ask that she speak to Marisabelle in her native language so she can be exposed to it. I realize that potentially I won't understand some of Mari's words, but that exposure to language is far more valuable and heck, it could even expose Don and I new languages and cultures. The school is a little more in price, but well worth it for the extras that she'll be getting. (Plus, they take credit cards and so we'll get points for her school! yaaay!) I'm so very excited and despite the disagreement with the other woman, I think this is actually a better situation for Mari. Plus, she gets to spend time with my mom, which I think any time she can do that is a good thing. (I can't wait for those last couple of weeks in the spring for her to hang out with her other grandmother!) God's grace has shone through and His plan for us continues to surprise and amaze me, but it really is for the best.
She starts her new school on Monday. While they provide meals for the kids, Don and I are on our food kick again and really aren't ready for her to be eating corn dogs and tater tots. Quite frankly, her little system would be in shock! This week alone, she's had a more complex diet than I used to eat as an adult 5 years ago. She loves couscous, wild rice, avocado, mushrooms, risotto, blanched carrots, rosemary chicken, pork tenderloin...well, you've seen the meals we prepare. Marisabelle gets all that except for the fish. At her old school, I made her food as well, and she would eat it up too! Anyway, I need to get her a lunch bag and her Grandma Carol will be making her nap mat. For the first couple of weeks, we'll make do with a regular crib sheet and blanket until she gets it for her birthday! Have any of you mommas done bento box lunches? I'm thinking of doing that for her as well.
So that's why I've been MIA for the past several days. What an incredible time in our nation's history and I'm certain many of you thought that I would have an opinion on it all. I loved the Inauguration ceremony. I loved the outfits. I though Michelle Obama looked stylish and graceful in her pistachio colored suit during the inauguration, but I would've preferred to see her and President Obama outfitted in different clothes. It seemed to me they were channeling their inner Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Nothing wrong with that, but if you are going to dance, then work that dance and showcase the flowiness of the dress. Instead, it just seemed like it was constricting for their dance and she just kept having to move it out of the way. I'm excited about the new presidency, and more importantly, I'm hopeful. I don't know what the next 4 years hold for us, but I'm optimistic. Then again, I think more of that has to do with what is going on in my own personal life. :D And for something completely random, I saw this quote of the day on Perez's site about rapper T.I. and even though the entire thing doesn't really make much sense, I'm glad he's showing his gratitude for God at the Hip Hop Inaugural Ball:
"I want to thank God for somehow … I know he perfect. So I'mma thank him for
everything. I'mma thank him for making me drop out of school. I'mma thank him
for making me run the streets. I'mma thank him for making me sell crack. I'mma
thank him for making me have shoot-outs. I'mma thank him for allowing me to
watch my partners die in my arms, So I'd be fearful enough for my life and
paranoid enough to go out and cop machine guns and silencers so I catch a fed
case and I have to put up $3 million for my bond so I have to spend seven months
of my life in my house, so I have to spend a year of my life in prison just so I
be validated enough to get out there and touch the youth because they know that
I done been through it, and if I say it, it means something. You know what I'm
Also, I got Marisabelle's invitations and they are A-D-O-R-A-B-L-E!!!! They are on their way to the post office today! Tonight, I'm yoga-ing it up and will come to center once again. Hopefully, I'll post the dinner pictures from last night so you can see the yumminess! Delish.
And for Jeev:
1 lb Salmon
Sprig of Rosemary
1 1/2 c. Cilantro, chopped
1/2 c. Low Fat Sour Cream
3 c. Romain Lettuce, chopped
Whole Wheat Tortillas
Place salmon skin side down on a 1 quart microwave safe dish. Season with salt & pepper. Sprinkle 1/2 c. chopped cilantro and add sprig of rosemary (I didn't have fresh rosemary, so I just sprinkled a teeny tiny bit of it on for a bit of flavor.) Place in microwave and cover. Cook on high for 7 or 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a bowl, add 1/2 cup sour cream and remaining cilantro. Season with salt and pepper if you like. Mix until blended well. Warm your tortillas! (I forgot and they were falling apart. bleh!)
After salmon is finished cooking, put your taco together. Tortilla, lettuce, salmon, and sour cream topping.
To make it better, we thought of adding a bit of jalapeno to the sour cream, including tomato if you like it, and maybe a hint of chipotle to either the salmon or sour cream dressing for some added flavor.