Koala update: Twenty two months.

I can’t believe my newborn/almost one-year-old/one-year-old/one-and-a-half-year-old/nearly two-year-old is nearly two years old.

I can’t believe we can have conversations that rate somewhere between caveman grunts and sentences.

And it’s been fun to hear him react to others, whether it’s a toy he converses with or one random day a couple weeks ago, on the way out of the car to go to gan, he turns to Abba and says, ‘See you soon!’

This month we also get a response after telling him we love him – ‘I you.’

Maybe the chattiness has to do with the reading he enjoys; I assume the language of his gibberish goes both ways, since he is an avid reader both at gan and at home.

The tantrums have taken a turn for the hectic lately, but I’m ok with attributing that to… ‘personality.’ People don’t become great without a little defiance, right?

And maybe in some alternative universe, it’s perfectly appropriate to throw a fit if your sleeves aren’t rolled up.

Mediation memories.

So today, at the real estate contract-signing (and last-minute negotiation) in a law office in Tel Aviv, my memories of my Masters degree education were revived.

Two years after finishing my course in Conflict Management and Negotiation at Bar Ilan University, I found myself on one side of a glossy wood table, glass pitcher of water serving as the barrier between us and our lawyer, and my landlord’s team.

I was able to attend a real mediation case during my studies and I learned so much from those five hours. Being involved today in a much less dramatic, but still tactical, two-sided conversation with clear ‘interesim’ was interesting. A little tense. And definitely nostalgic for something I haven’t ended up pursuing.

But I can also say, following your own thought process during a negotiation can reveal a lot about you…

Contracted to real estate limbo (or, Tzur Hadassah homeowner!)

As of a two-hour meeting in the Bursa district of Tel Aviv today, we are now contracted to become the owners of our Tzur Hadassah apartment!

That’s a convoluted way of saying something even more convoluted: We’ve signed and are waiting for the banks to finish their end of the deal before I can comfortably say I’m a homeowner in Israel.

Here in Israel, you sign a contract between buyer and seller first, and then finalize the mortgage with the bank, after which the bank deals with the seller’s bank and pushes the money through, after which you can then breath easy, stop paying rent, and then start breathing difficultly again when you realize you have a twenty year mortgage to pay.

So we’re in ‘contractual limbo’ – we signed our contract proving intent to buy the Tzur Hadassah apartment we’ve lived in for the last three years. Nearly, nearly rightful owners.

The fun part? It’s all due to come through the week I’m due to come through. Stay tuned…

Fadichot leaking all over the place.

Every other week or so when I pick up Koala from his gan, his ganenet passes me the pants I dressed him in that day and I look down and see him wearing the poofy red replacement pants we keep there.

Always with the same explanation: “He leaked again so we changed him…”

I guess I figured his diaper wasn’t changed enough or he was getting water all over himself. At least, it always sounded that way.

Today, my husband went to pick him up and got the same story. Only, he actually understood what the ganenet had been trying to tell me for months:

His pants are too big and fall down his legs.

She said: “Nozel lo.” I heard: “He leaks.” But apparently, she was being poetic and saying that his pants are sliding down his legs because they’re too big.

And I kept sending him in them every week.

Why didn’t she ever tell me they were gadol midai???

Immigrant parenting fail: 2840635 Me: 0.

Immigrant parenting fail.

Ok, maybe I don’t exactly fail yet. But I’m headed in that direction.

I attended an event tonight for the ‘gan mothers’ for which I had to push myself to go, and, not surprisingly, a room full of women + socializing + not knowing anyone + doing it in Hebrew is a mess of a combination.

And I’m totally freaked out. I want to be strong for my kid(s). I want to speak up for them. I want to give them the kind of sticking-up-for that was given to me.

I don’t want to be speechless or tongue-tied.

Currently, I don’t know how to do that.

I don’t think I’m cut out for this in English. I’m definitely not cut out for it in Hebrew. Not without a lot of work. How much is enough?