First of all, 200 NPs (new poofahs) each to Momz and Jenny, for contributing such fantastic "rock" ideas to the blog. And 195 poofahs to Sharon, who emailed me some very amusing ideas which she chose not to share with everyone else.
On Wednesday, we had an ulpan tiyul. It was a lot of fun. We toured modern and ancient Modi'in. I learned lots of stuff, which I promptly forgot about 30 seconds after the tiyul, so when I tried to impart my newfound knowledge to Donny, it came out like, "Ummmm.....duh.....erg....shumph." Needless to say, he was very impressed. Not everyone in ulpan came on the tiyul, because many of them saw it as an excuse to have a day off. To which the rest of us replied, "It's freaking ulpan! If you need to take a day off, take a day off!" We did not want to miss out on the fun of a trip. In fact, there was a group of us who sat in the back and were really rowdy and loud and shared our Fruit Wrinkles and Cheese Curls. I felt that we really bonded, as a group, on the tiyul. Now we have all kinds of private jokes and stuff, and every so often one of us will be like, "Ohmygod, remember, on the tiyul, when that thing happened?" And the rest of us crack up knowingly and offer more tiyul memories, causing more knowing laughter and really annoying everyone who was not on the tiyul. Ok, I made that last part up, but it happened in my head and it was rather amusing.
Now, we digress from aliyah adventures for the child-rearing portion of the blog. You remember, of course, the title of my book on child-rearing "Leave Me Alone So I Can Read the Paper." Well, one of our children, and I will not mention any names but will simply refer to him as The Boy, has not been leaving us alone much at all. Forget the paper, I don't even have time to read the back of a cereal box. Yaakov - whoops, I mean The Boy - has decided that he no longer needs to sleep. So he spends much of his evening (really, let's be honest, it's night by the time we're done) coming in an out of his room, and we spend much our evening taking him back. We have tried everything - ignoring him, giving him toys in his bed, putting him in his crib (which no longer works as he can climb out), sticker chart (failed because he insisted the chart be lower down on the wall so he could apply stickers whenever he wanted, thereby defeating the purpose of the chart), yelling (mostly me) - you name it, we've tried it, short of putting some Ambien in his toothpaste (he certainly eats enough of it that that would work.) Ariella, the Angel Sleeper, is in bed at 7:00 and asleep by 7:02. When The Boy first started his nighttime wanderings, he knew he was supposed to be in bed, so he would hide from me. If I was in the kitchen, he would be playing quietly in my room. If I was in my room, he was in the corner of the living room. Soon, however, it dawned on him that we were going to let him stay up a little later, realizing the futility of putting him in at 7:00. So he got more brazen - not bothering to hide, asking us for food, wanting to sit on our laps while we ate. We decided he could stay up after 7:00, but his bedtime would be 8:00. However, he was thinking more along the lines of 10:00. We are in a bit of a disagreement about this. Last night, I had a brilliant idea. Yaakov has about 90% of the toys now in his room, due to our desparate attempts to get him to stay there. So I told him that if he came out of his room, I would take a toy away. At first he was really upset when this happened. Then he decided he'd take the consequence of losing a toy if it meant getting out of his room, and went so far as to help us choose which toys to remove. "Take these two, Mommy. Put them on top of the fridge!" So much for that plan. In the end, he went to sleep about five minutes before I did, thereby killing whatever "evening" we would have had. Someone in ulpan today mentioned how his daughter was always climbing out of her crib, so they took a piece of cloth and sewed it between the legs of the pajamas, thereby inhibiting her movement. What a great idea, I thought - forget sewing pajamas, we should sew Yaakov to his bed! I will keep you updated on this issue - I am comforted by the fact that at some point, his wife will be the one marching him back to bed every night and Donny and I will finally have some peace.