July 27, 2015
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My son is a two-foot-tall gremlin when it comes to chocolate, as evidenced by his first bonafide tantrum that is certain to be foreshadowing for his second year. At fifteen months he most definitely understands quite a bit more than I would expect him to, and I’m convinced most of the time he pretends that I’m speaking some archaic language that only imbeciles utter just so he has an excuse to ignore me.
It began as an afternoon like any other. My son was staggering around our family room aimlessly before taking a sharp turn past our sofa and proceeded to pound on our pantry door. I could be mistaken, but I’m fairly certain he was not in search of the canned goods and grits we house behind the door. I recognized his emotional rendering of need, for if I too did not have the ability to manipulate door knobs keeping me from a tasty bag of chocolate, I would have the very same reaction. I give him a definitive negation thereby thwarting his plans. What began as a gentle cry of disbelief quickly transformed into an impressive full-out wail of sorrow and despair at my cruelty. I walked away, and he followed me into every downstairs room before I attempted distraction with a book and puzzle.
The technique worked until I glanced in the general vicinity of the pantry, to which I was greeted with the shrieks of a boy whose manhood has not yet dropped. Even after the ringing in my ears subsided, I’m fairly certain I can no longer hear certain octaves. With jerky movements of a poorly executed zombie flick, he returned to the pantry door. You’ve got to be kidding me! But, the prize goes to me, as my will is stronger than a fifteen-month-old chocoholic, so perhaps we will both survive until his next birthday.
July 17, 2015
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Little Man can climb the stairs…Now, ask me how I know this. Taking a day off work to enjoy his family, my husband was setting up the water table we inherited…a brilliant contraption, by the way… I was on my computer typing gratifying, angry keystrokes for my group project peer participation review. My husband excitedly opens the door, requesting the presence of our son. Then, I heard it, the most horrifying sounds any parent can experience…nothing. It was completely quiet, no giggle, no panting, no obnoxious clanking and rummaging through plastic toys in a hard bin…absolutely nothing. I call my son’s name with no noise for response, and then I notice the open gate that blocks the part of the house containing our stairs. I will refrain from naming the parent who left the gate ajar as protection from a small throng of bloodlust relatives appearing on our doorstep wielding pitchforks of the old country. Upon seeing him I can’t be completely sure, as I believe I felt the initiation of a brain hemorrhage, but the likely words that escaped my lips were those that could make Howard Stern blush. Oblivious, my little man sat looking at me from the top of the stairs as though it was his turn to tend to the laundry.
July 10, 2015
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There are certain things that always induce copious cheer for my toddler. No matter his poor disposition at the time, one only need swing him around to a vomit inducing degree, and he will expel hearty chuckles to reward you for your efforts.
Sandra Boynton’s Doggies produces a smile that only widened upon my son seeing the real thing for the first time. A medium sized dog at a relative’s house that I’m convinced is the true size of a small gerbil if one decided to sheer its coat was the object of my son’s obsession. On his knees with arms signaling, “Touchdown,” he couldn’t contain his excitement. Surprisingly gentle pats while panting that is reminiscent of a 1970s horror movie killer; trailing this poor dog around the house like a pathetically neglected significant other dating out of his league. The dog’s efforts to escape were met with my son weaving in between the ankles of unsuspecting party guests. All seven teeth visible whenever the scooting shag carpet was in view. Periodically, my son would stumble upon me or my husband, and with excited eyes, point at the dog saying, “Dee! Dee!” So, I guess that’s another word?
I stumbled upon another consistent mood elevator with Mr. Man. In an effort to expose my son to peers, I participate in a gym class with him. His newest fixation is a trampoline. While he is willing to take turns with other children…sort of…his persistence to utilize this contraption as much as realistically possible is impressive. His only effort to climb on a piece of furniture illustrates his motivation. Once on the netting he will do several things, but his absolute favorite is when I sit next to him in the middle and bounce. With space under me, he and I erupt like popcorn; my son giggling as he is tossed about, bumping into and on me in ways that look painful or at least unpleasant. But, no, he wants more, and I have to admit I enjoy the trampoline as well. Exiting in order to give another child the opportunity to indulge, I make a mental note of future whining and begging for which I must brace myself, but this Lady will not have a Tramp…
July 8, 2015
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My fourteen-month-old had a friend over the other day; well I’m telling him they are friends anyway. A sweet little girl just under a year who showed great interest in eating my son’s books. Per his usual way of requesting literary entertainment, he throws a desired book at me. I continue to read after he walks off; I’ve come to understand he often likes listening to the story in the background while he plays on the floor. His friend sitting at my feet, captivated by one of Little Man’s favorites. She crawls over and pads up my leg to a standing position, holding my knee for balance, riveted by the story. It didn’t take long for the master of the household to walk over and superimposes himself in front of his friend, claiming his mommy as his own.
I had not seen it before, but my little guy apparently has the capacity for jealousy…but not with all things. With his true friends he is quite generous. Among my son’s closest friends is his Kermit the Frog, who admittedly is quite a tolerant being, allowing my son to gnaw on his limbs, eyes, and face…we should all be so lucky… Holding Kermit, he waddles across the floor to where I am sitting like the tiny drunkard he is. Once at my feet, he hands me his truest of friends, who I reward with a place on my lap and recounting of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, bouncing the frog at all the same places my son knows so well. My son crawls over to his collection of books, digging through the piles until he finds the very story I am reciting. Throwing it in my direction, he takes a seat next to me and watches in rapture as I turn the pages, bouncing his friend on my lap. At times I could swear he conspired with Kermit at the parts of the story where one would be in for quite the ride.
The story concludes, and I begin another from memory. My son finds the story among the group as he did the first, but while he gave it to me, he expressed a strong preference for a different one. I should have known he would like his BFF to experience Piggy Paints… My son reclaims his seat, basking in the enjoyment he knew his friend was experiencing. Hmmm…maybe he just doesn’t like girls…