Mathematical Reasoning

"Mom, you've done four! And you have.... seven left."

"So how many do I have all together?"

"One, two, three..."

"Can you do it without counting?"

"I have to do it with counting first."

Silence for a moment.

"Eleven, mom! That's right! I forgot that five plus five is ten."

"Why does that matter?"

"Because then you know that five plus six is just one more, so that's eleven!"

"But you weren't adding six. You were adding seven, which is two more than five, not one. So why don't you have twelve?"

"Oh! Because the other one went to make the four into a five."

"Ah, that makes sense."

Also, that seems to me to be some quick and sophisticated mathematical reasoning for someone who can still "forget" that 5+5=10.


Anne of Green Gables Comparisons

When you read Anne of Green Gables, you read a story told from the perspective of a young girl. According to my amateur diagnosis, she's a gifted young girl with (by Dabrowski's theory) emotional overexcitability. In colloquial terms, she's emotional; she hits all the peaks and valleys of emotional experience. Marilla is rather sharp with her about this early on, and the author tempers Marilla's judgment with a rather calm comment about the wonderful peaks Marilla misses out on in being so even-tempered. It is, of course, a book about Anne, and so you are led to sympathize with Anne, to enjoy the peaks and valleys with her, and in fact to revel in them; Anne wouldn't be nearly so charming of a character without them.

I'm glad I have this frame of reference; I think it greatly helped me in being able to sympathize with my son just now in spite of the inconvenient timing (bedtime, ugh!) and my own exhaustion. But the way I'm dragging now, after putting in the effort necessary to get him calmed down for bed, makes me really, really sympathize with Marilla.

Emailing with the therapists again,

The Passage of Time

13 years ago (approximately), we took an infant DJ to the midnight showing of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. She nursed occasionally, slept through the whole thing, and likely no one else in the theater knew she was there. It worked wonderfully. (In part, this was because we were young and were more resilient about late nights than we are now, but leaving that aside....)

A year later, we tried to do the same thing with Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. This was rather less of a success, as she woke up during the climactic scene, became scared by the basilisk, and I had to remove her to the lobby for a time so she could calm down, nurse, and go back to sleep. We did not take her to the movies again, that I recall, until she was old enough to enjoy the movie herself.

Now, she's watching that exact climactic scene with obvious enjoyment.

Time is so weird.


On Rentals and Clean Fridges

Our old house has been functioning as a rental for the past four years. It is now, finally, in the hands of a couple who want to buy it as soon as they can (and are renting it in the meantime). They brought their own refrigerator and stove with them, so they asked what they should do with the ones we'd had there.

Since we own a 2-flat, we have two kitchens that have to remain functional in case we ever need to refinance or whatever -- our property value will, on paper, plummet should one of the kitchens become "nonfunctional." We've upgraded both major appliances in the main kitchen, but the ones upstairs were old and decrepit to begin with and showing their age in a downhill slide, especially the stove. So we thought we'd rent a U-Haul truck, bring over the ones from the old house, and get a nice upgrade, for free!

Ha. For $100ish on the rental, a heck of a lot of work, and probably a couple hundred bucks in replacement parts for things like a broken refrigerator shelf, more like. Getting the old fridge and stove moved was hard enough to make it feel like we were paying for getting the new ones; $40 to the local semi-homeless guy who's always asking us for odd jobs got me out of being part of getting the "new" appliances up the stairs, but Chris still had to be the second person involved in that. (I have never appreciated paying for delivery more. Just, y'know, in case you were thinking it mightn't be worth the money: It totally is.)

Today is my turn to pay sweat equity for these things; I get to clean them up. The fridge had been off and uncleaned while the house was being fixed up to sell, and this appears to have been a mistake; mold was allowed to take over the inside of the freezer, and the fridge wasn't in much better shape. I haven't even looked at the stove yet, except to verify that it'll be a heck of a job. I'm most of the way through the fridge right now -- only the door left to do -- and then I have to figure out how to swap the handles and the hinges so the doors open in the opposite direction from what they do now.

All of which is to say: If you have ever looked at a property you were considering renting or buying and found that the appliances were clean, do not take that for granted. It did not just happen. Someone worked for that cleanliness.