That was a very difficult three hours.
Dot was on the bedroom windowsill, where Grace has never before put a toy. It was a total fluke that I found him at all–she was helping me put some craft supplies away and I gave her a little butterfly bracelet that was in with my beads. She decided she didn’t want to wear it, and I went to put it away. I saw one of her necklaces laid out on the windowsill, and when I moved the curtain to pick it up I spotted Dot.
In the interim, I discovered (with a lot of googling) that Dot is a Beanie Baby named Hydrant. I am filing this information away in case anything ever happens to Dot, so we can get his “sister” for Grace. (I would never try to pull a switcheroo on her. She is too smart.)
Grace’s favorite toy is missing. She doesn’t know yet.
We realized after the children were in bed that we hadn’t seen Dot, Gracie’s stuffed puppy and constant companion, since we got home from hiking this afternoon. She and Sam (and Dot) took the stairs while Will and I took the elevator. Grace was carrying Dot and her jacket.
We don’t remember seeing Dot at any time after that, so we assume she dropped him and didn’t notice because she still had her jacket.
We checked the stairs, all the landings, the car, all around the car, our entire apartment, and even the dumpsters. No Dot.
I made signs and put them on every landing, describing Dot and asking for his return. Surely he was picked up by a neighbor’s child. But what if they don’t see the signs? Or don’t care?
I can’t remember ever feeling this devastated over anything. My stomach is in a knot thinking about how Grace will feel tomorrow. I’ve cried twice and I’m pretty sure a third time is imminent.
*title is a take-off of the title of the sixth (I think) Oz book.
So today we did this:
Grace was mesmerized. When Dorothy is a prisoner and the Wicked Witch turns over the hourglass, I peeked at Grace’s face to see if she was all right. She huffily turned and said, “I’m not afraid of anything!” so I guess that’s that. (She is so fierce. I love her so much.)
A few minutes later I happened on a link to this Wizard of Oz theme park, which has been closed for nearly my entire lifetime but opens to visitors once a year, and this weekend is it.
Then I remembered that once upon a time I wrote some stuff for Blogging.LA about strange Oz-related rumors.
Oz sets used to build the 10
The best part of all of this (other than Grace) is the small worldliness of it all. I met my friend Burns through blogging.la, he introduced me to roller derby, and another ref posted the link that got me looking at blogging.la again.
I was going to use one of these as the photo of the day, but she is so beautiful I couldn’t choose.
“Mommy, I drew a picture of Wall-E!”
Grace has not watched Wall-E in months. She loves to draw but her art is pretty abstract.
Uh. I mean was.
(Context: I was scrolling through Tumblr and she came and sat on my lap. Liz Miller posted a photo of the helicopter outside YouTube space.)
G: Can mine go in that red helicopter?
A: I wish we could. It is a very nice helicopter. I have never ridden in a helicopter, have you?
A: Really? When?!
I can hardly believe she is three years old. Of course, she was born so late at night that today is really just the anniversary of the day I went into labor.
Grace’s advent calendar this year was Playmobil dinosaurs. I think it is from last year or possibly even the year before, but her uncle Shelby tracked one down for her.
She is crazy about dinosaurs and has loved opening her calendar toy every day. Today, the ultimate day of Advent, she got a break-open egg with a baby dino inside.
This afternoon, she and Sam were playing when suddenly Grace came running to me in the kitchen. “Sammy scared mine baby dinosaur!”
I may possibly have taken a Calvin’s Dad tact. “No one can scare a baby dinosaur! It will eat anyone who tries. Go tell Sammy your dinosaur will eat him if he scares it again.”
She ran back over to Sam. “Sammy! DON’T EAT MINE DINOSAUR!”
Grace has started referring to herself as a Little Monster. She usually corrects anyone who calls her by anything other than Gracie, so this is kind of a big deal. (I do mean anything. The only affectionate name I ever get away with is Baby, and even then she usually clarifies that she is Baby Gracie.)
Yesterday I took a three hour nap in the afternoon. Will and I are both sick, and he’d already napped. I got in bed because I was cold, and the next thing I knew the sun was going down and Grace was climbing in bed with me. “Mama, can I get under the covers and cuddle you?” Well, you do not say no to a request like that. I held up the blanket and she shimmied into my arms and buried her head in my neck. “Mama, I just love you too much.”
So basically, this is the best cold I’ve ever had.