Archive for December, 2014

I know, it’s Hanukah and Christmas and I should be writing about that, or how weird it is that the Boo has absorbed a bunch of Santa lore by osmosis. But while I bake and wrap and pack and ship, Merry Merry HO HO is not what bubbles up when I think about what I want to write about.

About a month ago, the hubs suggested I take a night class at a local university, to get some time for myself. I was so touched, I almost teared up. I considered it, but between the cost and my lack of time to study, I opted to get an extra swimming session in.

Last weekend, we moved an old compact stereo to the Boo’s room so he can muck with it and yell into the Karaoke mike to his little heart’s content. The hubs went to fetch a few CDs, and then I heard it. Mannheim Steamroller Christmas. Or maybe Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Either way: Oh God no please make it stop. I’m not even sure the hubs knew how much I detest that “music” but he probably has a clue now since I made sure he saw one of my 88 eyerolls.

But. He loves it. He was dancing to it. And, because Daddy is Cool, the Boo was dancing too. Having a fabulous time with his adored Daddy. So I did the kindest thing I could think of to do. I walked away.

Last week, as I was gathering the 888 things the Boo needed for an overnight at his Grammie’s while mentally scrambling to put together a date night outfit, he came to find me. He was beaming, seriously, grinning and so, so very proud. And smeared with an impressive amount of Aquaphor (basically Vaseline) from his nipples to the top of his diaper. His shirt and pants had gotten in the way, so they were also, um, very well moisturized.

I gasped, a little confused, and then it hit me: I had put some of the stuff on his belly to soothe the rug burn he’d given himself sliding down the stairs. He was proud because he’d taken care of himself. He was happy because he’d done it all by himself. All of those thoughts flew through my head, and then I started laughing, because it really was very funny.

Friends, you can keep your menfolk who bring you flowers for no reason. I’ll keep mine, and let my heart fill with love whenever I get to swim laps on a weeknight. And I will show my love by leaving the room when a good Daddy-son session is centered on music I can’t stand. And if the Boo ever anoints himself again, I’ll do my best to react with love — toward myself, for being silly enough to leave the Aquaphor where he can get to it.

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We spent Thanksgiving with my family in LA. Herewith, the highlights of the Boo’s first West Coast encounter.

You did very well on the flights, though it must be said the extra attention from the Southwest flight attendants was very helpful. As was the iPad loaded with Caillou videos.

You glommed onto your Unk almost as soon as you saw him. Within a week, you were asking for your Auntie when you woke up from naps and dancing a little greeting jig for her. She danced right along with you.

You wanted to know if we were still in LA every time with left Unk and Auntie’s house.

You saw Frozen, Cars, and The Little Mermaid for the first time, and joined your cousins in the traditional post-screening dance parties. You kept asking for the “build a snowman movie” for the rest of the trip.

You followed your girl cousins around the house, prompting one of them to complain a bit about your puppy-dog ways. A few days later, they were reading books to you.

You got creamed by one high-swinging cousin. After that, you were very careful to give her a wide berth whenever she was on the swing — and she stopped swinging to play with you on the playhouse slide.

You ate meals very nicely both with the family and at restaurants. There may have been chocolate chips involved.

You adjusted to the new time zone within 24 hours, and were willing to sleep on the floor at night as long as you got to sleep on your cousin’s bed for naps. Once back home, you started lobbying for a big bed almost immediately by complaining about the bars on your toddler bed.

You learned how to eat a Popsicle, thanks to your cousins and your Unk, who responded to your confusion with, “Look at them and do what they,re doing.”

You saw Dolphins herding fish to shore.

You took such a shine to your grandpa-in-law (you let him pick you up!) that he volunteered to be your surrogate grandpa since both of yours are gone.

You were fascinated by the ocean, waves, surfers, and sand at Venice Beach. A big wave surprised you and knocked you on your butt in the 64-degree water, but once you got over the shock you wanted to go right back in. You grabbed handfuls of sand over and over and wanted to take some home — this, despite being reluctant to touch it at school.

You began shouting “mine!” and “I want to do it myself!” after a few days with your cousins.

You also began poking your cousins after a few days, and began following pokes with, “Time out?” and a grin. So much for that disciplinary tactic.

You occasionally asked to go home, usually when you were tired or hungry.

You did not miss your toys, probably because it was so warm you went outside as soon as you finished breakfast and had to be coaxed in after dark on more than one occasion.

You learned the word “thankful” because of the family’s suppertime thankfulness tradition. Once, you said you were thankful for school, another time, for Mama. Back at home, you’re responding to mealtimes by saying, “I want to say something” and then saying what you’re thankful for.

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I'm over 50. I'm raising a fifth grader. Sometimes he posts too.


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