13 January 2007


I bring my daughter to work periodically. I brought her in in December, so she could be at our office Christmas party. We went in a little late, so she didn't have to be there ALL day. I brought DVDs and other entertainment, we went out to lunch together (ah, macaroni and cheese), she did errands for me (took checks down the hall to be countersigned, and even brought them back), we Xeroxed her hand - you know, all those kid-in-the-office things.

She's been coming to the office since she was tiny. I started back to work (that is, back to work IN THE OFFICE*) one day a week when she was two months old, and brought her in on those days. Then it was three days a week, and she came two of them. Then, at about four months, I was back in the office full time, and she came every day, and we had a babysitter who worked half time out of the office. Every morning, I'd strap her into the Bjorn, and take her to work on the subway. I'd arrive at the office at 10, hand Miss M. over to Norma, and Norma returned with her at 2. Sometimes they went out, sometimes they stayed in the building. From 2 to 6, Miss M. was with me, or sleeping, or being passed around the staff. I had a pack 'n play and a stroller and a bouncy seat and an exersaucer and other assorted baby needs parked in an unused area of the office.

When she was 8 1/2 months old, we moved to the suburbs and I couldn't keep bringing her to work. Besides, she'd started crawling and it became untenable.

The point is that everyone in the office knows her pretty well. The day after the Christmas party, my boss was talking about her - her personality, charm, smarts - in short, about how great a kid she is. She is a great kid, and I'm often amazed at how outgoing she is. I don't think of myself as outgoing at all, though I'm certainly better than I used to be. So I rolled my eyes like "where'd she come from?" And he says "Plant a potato, get a potato". At first I thought: he's calling me a potato? But then I realized that it was an odd little compliment to me - my smart and charming daughter is that way because I am. Or because he thinks I am. Or whatever. It was actually a really sweet thing. "Plant a potato, get a potato."

Where did the phrase come from?

* There was not one day of my maternity "leave" that didn't include a call from my boss or someone else in the office, and every week, they messengered a package of mail and checks and other things to look at and/or do. I'm not complaining - I was on full salary the whole time, and it kept me in the loop so coming back wasn't too hard.

P.S. That picture? Miss M. asleep on the floor in the corridor outside of my cubicle, about 7 months old. She'd crashed there, and people had to step over her.


Le laquet said...

So, Google led me here where it says that the saying is from upstate New York and is a version of "like mother, like daughter." Sounds like it was a compliment!

Mayberry said...

It IS sweet, and so is the picture! Sounds like a great place to work (except for the part about bugging you daily during your leave--ack).

Jana B said...

WOW that sounds like an awesome job!!!!!