Ivy’s Favorites at 14 Years Old

Ivy, what’s your favorite…

Color? – Pink and Black

Animal? – *looks around the room for inspiration* “Not sure.” (This from the girl who has been begging me for years to re-start the favorite posts. Maybe she wasn’t expecting such a tricky one…)

Farm Animal? Do you have one of those?- “Maybe, yes. Yes, I like the ducks”

Not a duck.

Bird? – Eagles or owls

Food? – Ice cream

Clothes? – Sweatpants, sweatshirt and a tank top. (No kidding… Covid has been rough on all of our wardrobes but Ivy lives in this 24/7.)

Dog? – “Goose, but don’t tell Trip.”

Cat? – Cassie

Thing to do? – Read, hang out with you or watch anime.

Thing to do inside? – Read or watch anime (delivered with a sigh, apparently this question was repetitive).

Chore? – “Laundry or washing dishes.” (Hooray! It’s true she does laundry and washes dishes!!!)

Time of day? – Morning (Weirdo.)

Place to go? – Grandma Mary’s

(Note the clothing choice.)

Song? – I have lot. It might be Dacing in the Dark. (This must be true since she walks around with one ear plugged into music dancing and lip synching along 95% of the time.)

Flower? – Tulips

Thing about school? – “In quarantine? I don’t have to change my pants and I can do school in my pajamas. In general I really like my teachers.”

Friend? – “Natalie (can I say my top three?) Hyja, and Kyla.”

Movie? – Brave

Thing to do with Clara? – “I like playing card games with her. She’s the most willing out of everyone to play.”

Thing to do with Jane? – “I like when we are both in the same room and we are both reading and it’s quiet. I also like playing in the hammocks or silks in the garage with her.” (Hmmm… that first answer speaks volumes…)

Thing to do with Dad? – “Play board and card games or hiking.”

Thing to do with Me? – “I like playing ecologies with you and I also like swimming when you are coaching.” (She likes it when I coach? Amazing! Maybe it’s because I don’t outright tell her I like to watch kids suffer like John does when he coaches?)

Sport? – Swimming

Book? – The lunar chronicles plus Heartless (That’s like 6 books btw…)

Author? – Marrisa Myer or Cassandra Claire

Meal? – Brunch

Thing to do in the car? – Read

Thing about winter? – Skiing!

Season?- “Fall” (Why?) “because swimming starts and it’s also really pretty.”

Part of living during a pandemic? – “I don’t like the pandemic… I get to play more games with you guys.”

What do you want to do when you grown up? –  “I. Don’t. Know.” (Someone has to choose her first high school classes and this question is looming it’s scary head quite often in a more real way than it ever used to.)

When you get older what kind of problems to you want to help solve? – I don’t know that either.

Anything else? – One of my favorite classes in school is Spanish and I also really like art.

Last time I asked Ivy her favorites she was only 9 years old, take a look back and see how things have changed!

Ivy’s Favorites at Nine Years Old

Mom’s Favorites at 40 Years Old

So mom usually asks us what our favorites are, but this year I decided that I wanted to do it for her. In other words I am taking over mom’s blog for today. And in doing this blog it will hopefully encourage her to do one for us. – Ivy

Mom what’s your favorite…

Color – Red

Food – Potatoes

Meal – Dinner. Wait no, 2nd breakfast

Whiskey – My regular favorite is Jim Beam. My favorite special whiskey is Basil Haydens.

Dog – Goose. Shh don’t tell Trip.

Cat – Gypsy

Person – Dad (John)

Uncle – hmm. I don’t want to answer that. Can we delete that question? Wait, if you are reading this and you’re my uncle, then it’s you.

Author – … that one lady that writes the books I love…

Book – Dealing With Dragons is my all time favorite book, but now I feel disloyal to all the other books.

Cousin – The one who is reading this as well.

Sport – Swimming

Swimming Stroke – Backstroke

COVID19 thing – Capoeira class with the Raizes group in Santa Cruz.

Aunt – My favorite aunt? Are you guys trying to start a family war? (I think dad is).

Animal – My favorite use to be a frog and the theme for today’s for Cool Beans Club is frog drawings so we should do that. But now, it might be a dog… or a goat.

Farm animal that we have – It might be the geese but also the silky chickens. But if you made me choose it would be the geese.

Thing to do inside – I don’t know what to say. I like to… wash the dishes? Nope. Play the piano? Hardly do that… I don’t know.

Thing to do outside – Walk the dogs while taking pictures.

Place to go – Camping (uh…ok?)

Time of day – Time of day? umm 10pm (both start laughing)

Time of year – winter, fall, winter, fall, winter.

Song – I don’t like music (I don’t like that answer. Mostly because I have my headphones on 24/7). Mom: Ok what about I don’t like music that much, I do like the “Whiskey for my Men, beer for my horses” song and “Na ladeira”

Thing to do while we are at school – Enjoy the quiet.

Friend – Sarah (not surprising) for how many years? How old was I in 2nd grade? 8 years old, so we have been friends for 32 years.

Movie – I don’t really watch movies but, probably “French Kiss” because I don’t watch movies.

Thing to do with me – Wash Dishes… JK I like to work out together and I like to yell at you to take your headphones off when I’m trying to talk to you.

Thing to do with Clara – Take care of her pigeons.

Thing to do with Jane – … What do I do with Jane? Wait, do I do things with you guys? Now I feel like a bad mother. Oh wait, she does do the chores with me and that’s fun.

Thing to do with Dad – I don’t know, hang out with him all day, every day FOREVER because that means I can do everything with him.

Thing to do in the car – Currently, since my concussion? Sleep!

Thing to do in your free time – I don’t have free time… eat chocolate in quiet.

Type of clothing – Hooded sweatshirts (me too).

Thing about having kids – um…. Dad “when they are quiet”. Mom “When they do nice things for you like birthday surprises for you and write blogs.”

Flower – Daffodils or forget-me-nots.

Chicken – I don’t have a favorite by name but kind… wyandottes or silkies or any new variety (Dad calls from the other room “So the next chicken”)… Yes

Anything else – Ted the vacuum cleaner (we named out new Robo vacuum cleaner Ted if anyone is confused).

Happy Birthday Mom.

Clara’s Favorites at Seven Years Old

Clara, what’s your favorite…

Color – I have couple, teal, blue, green, yellow and purple.

Animal – I have couple, dolphins, bees, foxes (I just like the look of them) and ummm what are they calllled, manatees.

Bug- Bees and earwigs. *laughing* NO I don’t like earwigs!! And that’s when I knew this was going to be interesting…

Food – Lots of stuff, like pizza, spaghetti, kielbasa, the skillet you make, ice cream and candy.

Clothes –Skirts and t-shirts if its summer, but in the winter I like to wear long sleeves, long pants and socks cause I like skating around the house. And that’s where we diverged from list making into a much more interesting conversatuon…

Dog – I have couple… *big breath* Trip, Storm, Goose, Digby, Cooper (poor Cooper has been gone for years but glad he still made the list) Rosie, Birkie, Buzz, Turk, Bailey, Ruby.

Cat –Gypsy, Cassie, Fiona, Baby, Pester, Ginger, Blacky and Oreo (It seems our youngest cat didn’t make the cut and the last three are kittens her friend’s family “might” adopt. Makes you wonder what Simone did to her recently).

Person – You, Dad, Jane, Ivy, Grandma Grandpa, Grandma Pat, Grandpa Al… Like all my grandma’s and grandpas and aunts and uncles. Lola, Lucy, Brent, Rachel, Macy, Evelyn, Joe… I cut her off around here before she listed everyone she knew.

Me: Do you know what favorite means?

Clara: …yeaahhh…

Me: What’s it mean?

Clara: You really like them.

Me: Does favorite mean one or lots?

Clara: ….

Me: So, most people think favorite means the thing they like the most.

Clara: Yeah… but I can’t choose.

Alright then. Moving on…

Thing to do –A couple… Like two… Swim and we play on the playgrounds, oh three, and play on the computer, or ipad or phone… or do arts and crafts… I can’t choose!

Thing to do inside – Annoy Ivy. Great…

Thing to do outside – swim

Chore – *laughter, lack of eye contact*  Ummm nothing. – Oh! Clean the pool out cause then you get to be in the pool.

Time of day – Two. I like how we are numbering the favorites now.  Dinner time when it’s close to dark out. And in the morning and at midnight. And how that doesn’t cut down on the number of things what so ever. Or make them factual. She’s a monster in the morning and she doesn’t ever get to stay up until midnight. 

Place to go – Umm couple… Like to Florida, to the beach, to Lola’s and to the Cambridge Elementry and the pool house at Lola’s and where I saw the kitties at Lola’s. Lola is Clara’s best friend, can you tell? Also she likes going to school? Judging by her morning behavior, I’m totally suspicious of that.  

Song – I don’t really have one… I like… Katie Perry, or Lady Gaga but I don’t like Lady Gaga as much as Ivy. Who does really?

Flower – Three I doubt it. Like the ones that go and are like in the summer… SCILLA! One Ummm what are they called, they are in the summer and some of them have white petals… Oh yeah, daffodils Two and tulips Three and the roses with not a lot of petals cause the ones with tons of petals-*makes a disgusted face* uh ehhh! Four. I’m totally with her on her rose feelings though. 

Farm Animal – Horses and goats. What? That’s it?

Thing about school – Couple things, recess, snack time – cause she usually reads a book to us, and um um um um I don’t remember. And this Clara is why favorite implies one thing. A thing you like enough that you remember it. 

Friend – You know… You know… Lola! Yes. Yes we do know. 

Movie – I don’t have one. Believable. 

Thing to do with Ivy – Annoy her. Me: How do you like to annoy her? Clara: By going like, “Ivy , Ivy, Ivy” and if she says “What?” I just keep saying, “Ivy, Ivy, Ivy…” This explains a lot of the yelling that I’ve been hearing lately. 

Thing to do with Jane – Annoy her and play legos. Me: How do you like to annoy Jane?  Clara: Go, “Jane, Jane, what’s that, what’s that, Jane, Jane…” This explains the rest of the yelling I’ve been hearing. 

Thing to do with Dad – Couple things, not annoy him. If only that were true… Go to parks with him, play in the garage and make obstacle courses and help him build like sailboats. That would be a reference  to the two pieces of wood she nailed together 3 years ago and dubbed a sailboat. 

Thing to do with Me – I don’t know, watch movies. And if you wanted proof that I’ve been a bit stressed and cranky lately there you have it. Like what kind of movies?  We don’t watch very many movies. Selkie one maybe?  The selkie movie was Song of the Sea which was beautiful and she cried through half of it. Again, were you wondering about my general attitude lately? 

Book – I don’t have one. This answer bothered me far more than the previous one. You can not like me but no favorite book?!? Tragic! 

Meal – Breakfast. I think she’s losing steam.

Thing to do in the car –Color and annoy people. Me: Can you not annoy people on the drive tonight? Clara: Ok, but its what I love to do!

When you get older what kind of problems do you want to help solve? This required further explanation. Her eventual answer: “No.” She creates problems, she does not solve them.

What do you want to do when you are grown up? – Have a lot of cats. But if I get a husband he would have to do the cat litter boxes. This is where I almost swallowed my tongue trying not to burst laughing. 

Anything else? –  Candy!- Sour candy! I think that might be it… oh wait my favorite kind of fruit is… I have couple… lemons, limes, apples, grapes, pineapple, watermelon and peaches. Oh, and pears!

But that was all yesterday…

Today Clara turned eight! 

Happy Birthday to my girl who has all the favorites!

60 Random Questions

Every so often I see a list of questions making the blogger rounds, sometimes it even gets sent to me but, and I know I’m a blogger so this sounds weird, I don’t actually want to sit down and list answers to a bunch of questions all about me. However, one night last November, John and I answered a giant list of questions together.  That was a whole different story, we laughed and talked and teased and discussed and had a lovely evening and then the list and answers were forgotten. Today, I was prowling through my drafts looking for inspiration and pulled it up. The answers are still all true so if you want to know what John and I think of a whole lot of random things read on…

Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed? Both. It doesn’t matter until winter when it’s really cold and then we have to close them because our closet is quite possibly the coldest room in the house.

Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotel? No, John just shaved his head again and they never put anything worth taking in them.

Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out? Nothing may be tucked in because that would make your feet trapped and claustrophobic and who could sleep in a situation like that?  (To let the record show, John thinks its ridiculous!)

Have you ever stolen a street sign before? John has, and other random acts of vandalism, I have not.

Do you like to use post-it notes? “Dear God, it’s one the best inventions ever!” – John  And yes, I like them too.

Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of bees? Bees. Bees don’t actually attack when they are swarming-  big bears do.

Do you always smile for pictures? Mostly.

What is your biggest pet peeve? “People who don’t throw away the sandwich box at work. What a stupid question. Why isn’t it everybody’s?”- John  We are both surprised that I can’t think of one, must have been a good day.

Have you ever peed in the woods? The question should be, “Have you peed in the woods today?” John-yes, Jessie- not since yesterday

What about pooped in the woods? Yes.

Do you ever dance even if there’s no music playing? You don’t need music to spontaneously dance in the kitchen together.

Do you chew your pens and pencils? “Pens? Pencils? I never chew my keyboard” – Jessie “I’m a chemist, lord knows what’s on the pens and pencils.” -John

What is your song of the week? Shut up and dance with me is stuck in both of our heads, possibly the kids’ fault.

What’s your least favorite movie? Jessie refuses to answer because that’s by nature a ridiculous question. John, apparently, hates the LEGO movie.

Where would you bury hidden treasure if you had some? If we told you it wouldn’t be very well hidden now would it. But it would for sure be in a tin, because I love tins.

What do you dip a chicken nugget in? We are a BBQ or Ranch house.

What movies could you watch over and over and still love?  John can re-watch movies an alarming amount of times, I don’t.

Were you ever a boy/girl scout? No Boy Scouts and one short stint as a Brownie.

Would you ever strip or pose nude in a magazine? No, we are too old for that shit.

When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper? When our friend’s husband died.

Can you change the oil in a car? John is a super fantastic oil changer – so I don’t have to be.

Ever gotten a speeding ticket? “The more interesting story is when I talked myself out of a speeding ticket by telling the officer I was going to study organic chemistry at 7 on a Friday night, sadly it was the truth.” – John “Nope, I drive nice and slow, that way everyone else wants to drive so we get there faster, then I don’t have to drive and we get there faster – win win.” – Jessie

Ever ran out of gas? Yup.

What is your usual bedtime?  12 – 1 Am

Are you lazy? John isn’t lazy, he says he could be, but he isn’t. I’m not lazy it’s just that after a day of super productiveness I sometimes need to reward myself by reading an entire book.

What is your Chinese astrological sign? Apparently we are a Monkey and a Snake – and we are not impressed.

How many languages can you speak? We are pretty good at English and if pressed John thinks he could still navigate a French speaking country. I however panic in the face of foreign language and could not.  (Update: In the last year we have now learned to sing in Portuguese, though we don’t always know what we are singing about and John can count to ten in Korean.)

Do you have any magazine subscriptions? Only nerdy ones. National Geographic and Discover.

Which are better, legos or Lincoln logs? That’s… That’s… such a ridiculous question. You can build houses, barns, other square buildings, and fences with Lincoln logs. You can build ANYTHING with Legos. Also I might have a MiniFig obsession…

Are you stubborn? “I’m gonna let you take this one…” – John.  “Yes. I think yes is the correct response here.” -Jessie

Who is better, Leno or Letterman? John says Letterman, I dislike them all.

Ever watch soap operas? John hasn’t but in college I was a regular Days watcher.

Are you afraid of heights? John climbs high things for fun while I try not to watch.

Do you sing in the car? Totally.

Do you sing in the shower? Never. That would mean you would be wasting time in the shower and then you’d be in there longer and that would be ridiculous.

Do you dance in the car? Only when there isn’t oncoming traffic watching.

Ever used a gun? Not today, and that’s a serious issue when it’s November.

Do you think musicals are cheesy? Of course they are it’s part of their charm.

Is Christmas stressful? No. Having a kid’s birthday on December 23 might be though.

Ever eat a pirogi? “What’s that?” – Jessie  “Yup, made by a polish woman.” -John

Favorite type of fruit pie? Apple… or blueberry.

Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid? Paleontologist, Astronaut, Doctor, Veterinarian, Elementary School Teacher. You can guess who’s who on those.

Do you believe in ghosts? “Nope.” -John  “Except when its a dark and stormy night and I hear funny noises then my imagination tries to convince me otherwise.” -Jessie

First concert? I don’t remember. John saw Air Supply with his mom.

Nike or Adidas? Ummm dude, shoes are foot coffins, they are both evil!

Cheetos or Fritos? Doritios is the -itos we should be talking about here!

Peanuts or Sunflower seeds? John loves sunflower seeds, but they aren’t really food so I’m choosing peanuts for both of us.

Ever take dance lessons? They don’t give those out in cars so no. John took a swing dance course in college though.

Regularly burn incense? Does burning oak in the wood stove count?

Who would you like to see in concert? The Piano Guys, Little Big Town (but I couldn’t remember their name so I’m probably not going to make that happen) John’s adding Rush, I don’t even know who that is.

What was the last concert you saw? Great Big Sea

Are you patient? Do elephants fly?  

Which are better, black or green olives? Ick. I give all my olives to John and he says their isn’t’ enough data in the question to make an informed decision. Fancy green, canned crap, black.

Can you knit or crochet? I could knit, not sure I remember how anymore though.

Best room for a fireplace? The middle one.

Who was your HS crush? Somethings should die with High School.

Do you cry and throw a fit until you get your own way? No, that’s what the three year old tries and it doesn’t work for her either.

Do you have kids? Three

Do you want kids? Three is good, no more please.

What’s your favorite color? Blue

Do you miss anyone right now? Not more than usual.


How about you?

Have you ever answered questions with someone before?


Jane’s Favorites at Four Years Old

Jane what’s your favorite…Jane

Color – Pink!

Animal – Monkey

Food – “Like can you say vegetable or fruit?” ( sure…)

Vegetable -Potatoes (Botanically speaking anyway)

Fruit – Banana (Sorry Jane, no bananas in the house, I hate them!)

Clothes – Fashion star! Is that a kind of clothes? … hmmm…This kind!!! (and then she shows off her sparkly toed shoes with her sparkly pink tutu ballerina outfit).

Dog – “Jessie’s!  Jasper!  No not Jasper.  Radar!  If I go by Radar he actually doesn’t bite anymore.” (Jessie is my friend who has three dogs we watch often. Jasper is the smallest of the group and while they used to be good friends, I’m not sure Jasper has held still long enough for Jane to pet him in months. Radar is my Dad’s new puppy that might be part alligator but for sure has had Jane unwilling to go in or out of the house in her efforts to stay away from the puppy. It’s possible she forgot the meaning of the word favorite here).

Cat – Fiona  (Fiona was our old cat that the other kids “gave” to Jane, Jane did admit that Cassie is her favorite cat that is still alive.)

Person – Mom ( With her finger literally on my nose, it’s nice to be loved right?)

Thing to do –  Watch videos

Thing to do inside – Watch videos

Chore – Cleaning rooms (While she never is willing to help clean up her and her sisters’ room she did today because she was bribed with the previously mentioned videos.)

Time of day – My birthday! Me: “No time of day not actual day.” Jane:  “My birthday!” Me: (Explains what a time of day is.) Jane: “Summer! Turtle and floaties!” Me:”No, TIME of day!” Jane: “Morning!” Me: “Why?” Jane: “Just because I can do chores so I can watch videos.” (Wow… all that and we returned to video watching…)

Place to go –Lake RipleyJane

Song – SNOW GLOWS WHITE ON THE MOUNTAIN TONIGHT (Let It Go from Frozen for those of you who don’t live with a child obsessed with Elsa, ice powers and a healthy set of lungs.)

Flower –  Probably the scillas.  Like- snow drops first… and then scilla.

Farm Animal – Horse

Thing about your sisters being in school – Because I get to play with their stuff. (As if we didn’t all see that one coming.)

Friend – Nobody. (tiny sad voice) Except liberty is my only friend. (fake tears)  (She has other friends. I promise I don’t keep her in a box, we keep her on something more like a stage, drama queen that she is.)

Movie –Xiolin Showdown

Thing to do with Clara – Nofin, I don’t want to do anything with her. (Ouch. The next day she would only sit by her at dinner though, nothing permanent there.)

Thing to do with Ivy – Play LEGOs!

Thing to do with Dad – Tricky dad! Trick dad! (Don’t ask me, I’m just asking the questions here!)

Thing to do with Me – Trick you!

Book – Princesses (sings) Elsa (sings) Me: “Do we have one?” Jane: “No.” Me:” Have we read one?” Jane: “No.” Me: “How can it be your favorite then.” Jane: ” Just because I like it.” (Clearly.)

Meal – Macaroni and cheese

Thing to do in the car – (GIANT SIGH) Wait. (Again, possibly we needed to go over what favorite actual means.)

What do you want to do when you grown up?  -Be a rock star “Sing it girl!” (I… I… Possibly she was switched by the fairies? …)

What kind of problems do you want to help solve when you grow up?  – Mystery (whispers) You lost something and you can’t find it anywhere and it’s invisible! Me: “You can find those?” Jane: “No, not really, you have to feel them out.”  (As she pantomimes feeling invisible things and I wonder if her logic is irrefutable or perhaps she really was switched by the fairies.)Jane

Anything else? – Yes. One clue, come on. (wander…wander… distract…distract) Making cards for Liberty! And going to the zoo. Only one more. Being at Grandma Pat’s house, because sock world…what it is called? Monkey Joes!!!


Here are some links if you’d like to take a look back at Jane’s answers over the last few years. Though I can tell you while the answers have changed, her unwillingness to give a useful answer the majority of the time has not!

Jane’s Favorites at Three Years Old

Jane’s Favorites at Two Years Old


A Study to Determine Jane’s Favorite Items at the age of 15 months


Clara’s Favorites at Six Years Old

Clara what’s your favorite…DSCN4696-(2sm)

Color –  Blue

Animal – “Like bees? Are you going to ask me about bugs? … Yeah? Then cats are my favorite animal.”

Bug- Bees!!! (Who would have guess it?)

Food – Pizza

Clothes –  “I don’t really know, fancy clothes?” Me: “Are they your favorite?” Clara:  “No, Lola’s.”  (Much discussion followed and I discovered that Lola’s fancy clothes are Clara’s favorite clothes to wear.)

Dog – Trip and Rosie

Cat – “It used to be Fiona but now it’s Gypsy.” (Poor Fiona has been gone for just over a year now.)

Person – You and Dad

Thing to do – Play at the waterpark when I go to Wisconsin Dells with Lola. ( You might not know this yet, but everything eventually comes back to her best friend Lola. Everything.)

Thing to do inside – Play with cats.

Chore – Baby ducks and baby geese. Me: “How come.” Clara: “That they are fuzzy.” (Can’t argue, fuzzy baby birds are the best.)DSCN3161-(2sm)

Time of day – The afternoon. Me: “How come?” Clara: “Because you don’t have to do chores and you don’t have to eat dinner.” Me: “You don’t like eating dinner?” Clara: “Yeah, it’s weird I like lunch more cause I usually have tiny lunches.” (It’s good she has a reason… right?)

Place to go – Wisconsin Dells with Lola.

Song – My songs know what you did in the dark – Fall Out Boys

Flower – I don’t know. But my least favorite kind of flower is thistles. (And see there is an answer to a question I never even thought to ask!)

Farm Animal – Horses. Or bunnies. Do you know what my favorite kind of horse is? Me:  “No.” Clara: “The kind that, um, um, I might have… One of these, I don’t remember what kind I think it’s a tinker.” (So the question is, Clara, do you know your favorite kind of horse?)

Thing about school – You don’t have to do chores.

Friend – Lola (Surprise!)

Movie – Bernstein Bears (that’s a movie?) but at school my favorite video is Olivia.

Thing to do with Ivy – Play fairy gardens.

Thing to do with Jane – Play dress up.

Thing to do with Dad – Help him coil up the rope. (Old wire fence, fun right? Right…)

Thing to do with Me – Gardening

Book – Bees. The one where you can see the mite close up on a bee. (Because she knows her bees and her bee parasites!)

Meal – Dinner (Wait, I thought diner was weird?)

Thing to do in the car – Color

What do you want to do when you grown up? You know… be a bee keeper! (It’s true, I did know.)

Anything else? –

Bookmark- Bee bookmark

Tree- Apple

Favorite kind of apple – Golden Delicious

“Oh for flowers I remembered what it was. Petunia. NO apple blossom.”


(Good thing I asked!)DSCN4695-(2sm)

Looking back:

Clara’s Favorites at Five Years Old

Clara’s Favorites at Four Years Old

Clara’s Favorites at Three Years Old

Clara’s Favorites at Two Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Nine Years Old

Once a year I like to interview my children to find out what all of their favorite things are. It has never failed to be informative, surprising and amusing.

Ivy, what’s your favorite…Ivy

Color – Blue (Which Clara objects to because blue has always been her color, and so either because Ivy is so nice to her sister [unlikely] or doesn’t actually like blue best [much more likely] she never chooses blue anything).

Animal – Horses

Food – Tortellini casserole (Even when it has green stuff in it!)

Clothes – Dresses

Dog – Penny (A whippet owned by one of the summer cottage renters at my parents’. She seems nice but I’m offended on behalf of my dog just on principle.)

Cat – Cassie (Cassie loves her best too.)

Person – You and Dad

Thing to do – Read

Thing to do inside – Play with LEGOs (Oh so true, it’s LEGO mania around here lately. Have I showed you my new favorite mini fig?)

Chore – “I don’t have a favorite chore.” *giggles* “That’s funny why would I have a favorite chore?” (insert mom sigh)

Time of day – Ivy: “Bedtime.” Me: “What? why?” (Because bedtime sure doesn’t seem like anything anyone around here loves.) Ivy: “Because I like laying down, it’s fun.”  (Okaaay…)

Place to go – FloridaIvy

Song – Lady Gaga (She couldn’t pick just one, and her love of Lady Gaga is all John’s influence, just so you know.)

Flower – Lilac

Farm Animal – Horses

Thing about school – Reading

Friend – Natalie and Hija

Movie – I don’t remember, I mean I remember, but I’m trying to think about it.. Can we come back to this one? … Secretariat, I can’t think of it so I’ll just say Secretariat – oh wait, it’s Enchanted.  I love that movie!

Thing to do with Clara – Rolling around. Messing around. Messing around with pillows and blankets and sometimes mattresses. (I hate that plan, it involves mattresses pulled off beds and lost blankets and despite anyone’,s best intentions, it’s never fixed before bedtime!)

Thing to do with Jane – Dress up, she’s the one that loves dress up. (I found this answer hilarious for reasons I can’t quite articulate.)

Thing to do with Dad – Checkers (She’ll be able to beat me regularly soon.)

Thing to do with Me – Just hang out with you. Probably working out… sometimes… (Yeah, I’m not always a fun mom…)

Book – Rainbow Magic (This is where I repeat: I’m glad she likes to read, it doesn’t matter what she’s reading I’m just glad she likes to read. I’m glad she likes to read, it doesn’t matter…)

Meal – Dinner

Thing to do in the car – Read

What do you want to do when you grown up? –  Marine biologist, … Studying sea turtles, I love sea turtles, maybe leafy sea dragons. (That’s excellent because I always wanted to know more about leafy sea dragons!)

When you get older what kind of problems to you want to help solve? – Bullying (Hint: Start with your behavior toward your sisters!)

Anything else? – I love the ocean. (Poor Midwestern child, that ocean is so very far away!)Ivy with gosling

Looking back:

Ivy’s Favorites at Eight Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Seven Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Six Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Five Years Old

Ivy’s Favorite Things

Clara’s Favorites at 5 Years Old

Clara what’s your favorite…clara in sunglasses

Color – Blue- that’s easy!

Animal –Cats

Food – Bratwurst, on the grill. (With no bun and lots of ketchup for dunking.)

Clothes – “Dress with circle-y star thingy and blue pants.” (You got that, right? Let me help, a black and white tied dyed dress with dark blue leggings.)

Dog – Rosie at Grandma Mary’s, but at our house Trip. (My dog wins again!)

Cat – Gypsy (Gypsy starts purring when she realizes I’m going to lift her up and tuck her in with Clara at night. Once she’s tucked in you can hear her right across the room!)

Person – Lola

Thing to do – Eat popsicles. (She wants to eat popsicles even when it’s freezing cold and nasty outside. We do not see eye to eye on popsicle eating.)

Thing to do inside – Watch Doc McStuffins. (Once. I think she’s watched that here once. I think her favorite thing to do is run around the circle that makes up the bottom of the house, chasing her sisters and her friends and screaming every time they see each other. Or it just seems like it because of the loud factor.)

Chore –Feeding the cats. (Clara is a very good cat feeder. Apparently it’s because cats are her favorite animal. Good thing I ask these questions so I figure this stuff out.)

Time of day – In the night time. Because sometimes at book club we get to see your friends. (Guess who just hosted book club?)

Place to go –Grandma Pat’s- even on Halloween. (I have no idea what the “even on Halloween” refers to. Grandma Pat got them all awesome costumes last year and I hate Halloween. It should say especially on Halloween! But you know, she’s five, so maybe that’s what she meant.)

Song – Bursts into song “Cows go white on the mountain tonight, not a cow to be seen, a kingdom of isolation and it looks like I’m the cow…” (And for the uninitiated yes, that was Let it Go, with Cows.)

Flower – Strawberry flowers AND pansies.

Farm Animal – giggle giggle Cats. Nope, weirdos. Just kidding cats. (So, cats then, definitely cats.)

Friend – Lola

Movie – Ok I’ll tell you my favorite movie now. What’s it called… What’s it called, the movie Jessie. (We had to come back to this one before she would grace me with an answer. Jessie is a TV show and while I can’t say I dislike the name it’s a pretty crap looking show. All I can say is that she doesn’t know about it from our house.)

Thing to do with Ivy –  Play American Girl dolls. (This is the year that Darling and Mamma games finally died HOORAY!!!)

Thing to do with Jane –Play Minnie Mouse.

Thing to do with Dad – Pick apples! (They both like climbing the trees!)

Thing to do with Me – Clara: “What do you think? We do it in the greenhouse lots of times.” Me: “Plant seeds?” Clara: “Yeah! or pot plants!”

Book – I have two favorites, the Boxcar Children that we are reading right now, (Surprise Island) and Ulysses and Flora (A hilarious chapter book by Kate DiCamillo that we are half way through and all loving!)

Meal – Dinner

Thing to do in the car – Drive. Insert shit eating grin. Play on my drawin’ board.  Eat breakfast get in the car and go with our stuff. (She’s a girl who likes road trips!)

What do you want to do when you grown up? – That’s an easy one! Go in the Rodeo!!! (I have it on good authority that she’s not interested in bull riding. Phew!)

Anything else? –Nope.Clara

And that wraps up the girls’ favorites for the year! Clara has had some very amusing answers in the past but her answers at four are a personal favorite of mine:

Clara’s Favorites at Four Years Old

Clara’s Favorites at Three Years Old

Clara’s Favorites at Two Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Eight Years Old

Ivy, what’s your favorite…Ivy

Color – Blue (Interesting…)

Animal – Cheetah

Food – Tortellini Casserole (She must not know I always hide green stuff in there.)

Clothes –Grey workout pants with the pink stripe (Because blue’s her favorite color so of course those are her favorite pants. Also why do my children hate jeans? Don’t they know that jeans are the best thing ever?)

Dog – “Auntie Anne’s little dog – she’s adorable!” (Auntie Anne’s little dog is a papillon. She may be adorable but I was thinking of getting another Great Dane for my next dog…)

Cat – Cassie! (Cassie still loves going to bed with Ivy and on nights Ivy’s not home Cassie follows me around demanding to know where she’s gone.)

Person – You and Dad and Natalie

Thing to do – biking

Thing to do inside – play with legos

Chore – Letting out the chickens and the ducks because you get to see the baby chicks and you get to see how many duck eggs are there for Clara.

Time of day – Morning or afternoon. (I will say that she is, unfortunately, the only person in the house who is truly a morning person. But since she walks around the house trying to wake people up and then getting yelled at for her troubles, that’s probably not as fun as afternoons are for her.)

Place to go – waterpark

Song – Better Dig Two (by The Band Perry) and my Songs Know What You Did in the Dark, what Jane calls the Bam Bam song  (by Fall Out Boy)

Flower – Iris! No, ummmmm…. snowdrop.

Farm Animal – Ivy: “I’m trying to remember what they are called.” Me & John in unison: “There is a farm animal you don’t know what it’s called?!?” John: “Mammal or Bird?” Ivy: “It’s a chicken. What are the puff balls called?” Me: “Polish chickens.” (Phew, I was worried there for a second. Of course now I have a new concern-  Polish chickens, Ivy? Really?!)

Thing about school –Daily Five (A very long explanation followed my question on what exactly that was. I’m shortening it to: different reading and writing options that they get to choose from every day.)

Friend – “Natalie – obvious.” (Please use your best “Duh Mom” voice when you read that.)

Movie – Enchanted and Secretariat

Thing to do with Clara – Nothing. (Some car rides are harder than others, they happily do many things together, just not that day.)

Thing to do with Jane – The tree game (That’s when Jane bikes toward Ivy on her tricycle and she waves a tree branch as a signal. A bit like red light, green light but with the added fun of possibly bonking your sister in the head with a giant leafy branch.)

Thing to do with Dad – Biking (Oh dear. John went running and Ivy biked along recently. I only heard about it but it sounded like a best laid plan gone terribly awry.)

Thing to do with Me – Sewing (We’ve not done that in… lets see… umm… forever.)

Book – Ottoline and the Yellow Cat

Meal – Dinner

Thing to do in the car – Play with the GPS. (Probably because we let her do that for the first time just before the questions started.) Read books. (Yay for readers in the car!)

What do you want to do when you grown up? “Be a mom, but I really haven’t decided.”

Anything else? – Ivy: ‘What’s my favorite tree?” Me:  “What is your favorite tree?” Ivy:  “UUUUUHHHHHHHHHH………. apple” (That was a hard one I guess!)

Favorite Fruit – Wolf River apples (Yeah – we have an apple orchard, how’d you guess?)Ivy in the field

This is the fifth year I’ve asked Ivy her favorites everytime has been remarkably enlightening and entertaining!

Here they all are:

Ivy’s Favorites at Seven Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Six Years Old

Ivy’s Favorites at Five Years Old

Ivy’s Favorite Things

Jane’s Favorites at Three Years Old

Jane what’s your favorite…Jane

Color – pink

Animal – I can’t decide…. ummm… Mouse!

Farm animal- Jane: “I keep can’t guessing!… Lion.” Me: “Do lions live on farms?” Jane: “NO!” Me: “What’s your favorite farm animal?” Jane: “I can’t decide.”

Thing to eat – Animals! (She says with a grin. Which either means she’s a very good carnivore or just messing with me.)

Thing to eat for breakfast – Tomatoes!  I’m just kidding…. JELLYFISH!…ummm… TIGERS!… just kidding. (And so Jane continues to be the hardest person to get a straight answer from that I’ve ever encountered.)

Person- YOU!

Cat- Gypsy

Dog – I don’t like any dogs!

Thing to Wear – Elsa dress (Of course it is. I haven’t tricked her into the bath to steal it away from her recently so she’s been wearing it for at least 48 hours straight and it’s covered with dirt and sticky stains.)

Jane: Say what’s your favorite leggings.

Me: What’s your favorite leggings.

Jane: OLAF! (The world is only right if they are worn with the Elsa dress.)

Thing to do – play…uhhh…hmmmmm…I like to play with a teeny tiny mouse and a squirrel and – LETS GO PAINT! (And that sums up my third daughter quite nicely right there.)

Thing to do outside – Go find chicken eggs.

Chore – Get the duck eggs and the chicken eggs.

Time of Day – Going to sleep. Me: “Why? Do you like going to sleep?” Jane: “Because it’s dark out!” Me: “Do you like the dark?” (Because let me tell you she has a really odd combination of fear of the dark and willingness to roam a dark house looking for someone)  Jane:  “Yeah! … No, I hate babies and I don’t like holding them because they are poopy.” (ummm….ok….)

Place to Go – to the bouncy house

Song – Let it GO!

Flower- peony

Friend – Dad!

Movie – Let it go! (Frozen)

Thing to do with Clara- Play hide and go seek.

Thing to do with Ivy – Play in our room with me!

Thing to do with Mom- Go the the bouncy house… and… putting decorations up and making decorations. (It was a hard question for her. I don’t sing and dance and wear enough dresses for her world. Also I don’t take her to bouncy houses. But, really, why would she start answering questions in a way that made sense now?)

Thing to do with Dad- Make jewelry. Me: “Have you ever made jewelry with Dad?” Jane (turns to John): “Dad? Do you want to make jewelry with me and Mom will make decorations because I want to do that.” (Also last time I “made decorations” I planted flowers outside. Just thought you should know so nobody gets the wrong idea and expects me to have pictures hanging on the walls or something crazy like that.)

Book – princesses (After much discussion that was revealed to be All that Glitters a truly terrible disney princess book I refuse to read. I was surprised seeing that I’ve read Fancy Nancy and the Fanciest Doll in the Universe at least once a day for the last week.)

Thing to do in the car – My painting thing for the airplane ride. (It is pretty cool, thanks again Grandma Mary! http://www.melissaanddoug.com/water-wow-numbers-on-the-go-travel-activity)

What do you want to do when you grow up? Be a big sister… but I’m a little sister… (Yeah, no. Says Mom)

Anything else? When I was a baby I was to Jonas’s age. (?) I didn’t say what’s my favorite thing to drink! Water.


There you have it. Another year, another page of cryptic answers from Jane.

For the last two years of evasive answering you can check out –

Jane’s Favorites at Two Years Old


A Study to Determine Jane’s Favorite Items at the age of 15 months