Thursday, May 06, 2010

Potatoes, crawling, and first words

For dinner tonight Andrew decided to make French toast and “home fries” because “home fries can act as a substitute for hash browns.”

“What do you mean ’substitute?’ Home fries are hash browns,” I told him.

He went on to explain about shredded vs. cubed potatoes and how they are different because one is hash browns and the other is home fries. I told him one is shredded potatoes and the other is hash browns. I’m sure this is a regional thing so I’ll just let him call them whatever he likes as long as he makes them, which is what he’s doing now.

I am holding Miriam, who just fell asleep after nursing. Apparently she thinks 7:20 PM is late.

She’s been busy today, crawling all over the place—or, to be more exact, army crawling. Our floors are all hardwood or tiled and so she sounds quite interesting making her way across the floor, especially if she doesn’t have a shirt on.

Her arms reach out in front of her *plunk!*

She drags her torso along the floor, pushing with her legs and pulling with her arms, *screech!*


It’s better when she has a shirt on because then, not only is she a little quieter, she acts like a human Swiffer, especially if she’s been drooling a lot. *Plunk*whoosh*plunk*whoosh,* she mops her way across the floor. Her shirts get rather dirty but my floors are a lot cleaner!

Anyway, Miriam was in the kitchen with Andrew when he started frying the potatoes, slinking this way and that, exploring a bit. I was taking care of a few things in the living room and walked into the kitchen to consult with Andrew about something. He turned to look at me and as he did so he flipped a potato out of the pan. It went flying toward Miriam, of course.

Andrew stuck out his foot to try to intercept the potato as I made a grab for Miriam, but it was all for naught. The potato landed about a foot in front of her and after bouncing a few times was right in front of her.

Her face lit up like it was manna from heaven.

“Something new!” she thought and excitedly grabbed for the potato.

As soon as her fist closed around it is started shrieking. Babies don’t really react well to things like extreme temperatures. I remember once when Josie was about three Abra and I set a sprinkler outside for her to play in. She happily jumped into the spray and then started screaming, “It’s cold! It’s cold! It’s cold! It’s cold!”

“Step backwards,” Abra suggested.

“Oh,” said Josie, and took a few steps backwards. Problem solved.

Miriam had the same problem today. She was so upset that she didn’t think to unclench her fist herself so I had to literally pry the burning hot potato out of her hand.

I ran her hand under cold water until she calmed down. Meanwhile Rachel kept asking why she was crying, so we told her.

Rachel ran over and poked the potato with one finger.

“I touched the potato, Miriam, and I didn’t cry,” she said.

They’ve been having a bit of sibling rivalry lately. Miriam’s been getting more vocal and, I’m pleased to announce, her first sound was “mama.” I don’t think she has connected it with any meaning yet, but still. Mama triumphs this time—Rachel took forever to say mama. She was saying dada for months before she started with mama. So, last night I was coaxing Miriam at dinner to say my name some more.

“Say mama! Say mama!”

“Mama!” Rachel yelled. “I beat you Miriam. I said mama first. I won. And I talk better than Miriam, too, right, Mom?”

Yes, yes, of course.


  1. I know it is totally irrelevant, but I was reading some of ur older posts and noticed that you weren't fond of Egyptian food and missed food from the Levant a lot. I agree that their food is really good and definitely more classy than Egyptian food. Egyptian food is hard to serve in a restaurant but allow me to give some examples of really goof Egyptian food: Koshary (wish I hate it here in Germany), Fatta (fried bread, rice, meat/chicken and yogurt), mombar (like sausage but instead of a meat filling u have a rice filling and then fry it), mahshy (all kinds of vegtables filled with rice and herbs - much better than the what u are served in all med. countries) and last but not least ros bram (rice in a ceramic form with milk and meat/chicken). Of course I am biased but I thought of giving u some ideas for good Egyptian food. There are a couple of Egyptian food restaurants opening in the last couple of years, but unfortunately they are quite expensive (Tarboush - le Pasha, Abu el Sid). I also have to try eating fish and sea food in Alexandria. Whenever I am home I try to go visit relatives there to eat fish - so yummy!

    Btw I am sry that I am often commenting and reading ur blog as a complete stranger. If it bothers you I will definitely stop. But you write so well and I find it extremely interesting to read a foreigner's (especially with family) view on living in EGypt, since I am a foreigner here in Germany as well.

    God bless ur family

  2. PS: I meant I miss Koshary here! No idea how hate came out of me! And so many mistakes! Shame on me!

  3. 7:20 is late for us--we still put Matthew to bed between 6:30 and 7 every night! :)

    That's funny about the sibling rivalry--except it's what I have to look forward to pretty soon, and it scares me too! :)

  4. Anychance she vacuums too? I could really use that around here.....

    We have a 7pm bedtime around here too - 7:30 is late. :)

  5. We're on a complete Arab schedule over here. It's 9:00 and the girls just went down. It isn't uncommon for them to be up until 10 or 11. And that's EARLY for kids to go to bed here.

    I'm hoping we'll get to switch back to an American schedule when we get back to the States. Jet lag should help with that...