Sunday, June 26, 2011

First Pet Bug

A few weeks ago, we were at Target. Flik wanted a bug-catching set. It had a little "bug hotel" that was all mesh with a plastic door. It had little tweezers for picking up the bugs. (Seemed unnecessary.) And it had a little magnifying glass for getting a better look at the bugs. It was cute and cheap and Flik is a little boy, so we threw it in the cart.

A week later, Flik and Daddy are in the garage and driveway doing garage and driveway sorts of things. (I'm not really sure what, I tend to do "indoor" things while they're out there.) I go out to talk to Daddy, and Flik is giddy over the bug he caught in his new bug trap. I can tell from the look on Daddy's face that the bug in question is not going to be a Mommy favorite, but that's ok. I've got two boys and I know I'm going to have to be tolerant of the many-legged creatures that will be a part of my life for a while.

Flik is standing in the driveway and holding his bug hotel. From where I am standing, it looks completely empty. No leaves or twigs have yet been inserted to create a "habitat". Flik, practically bouncing with excitement, brings the bug hotel to me.

"Look, Mommy! I caught my first bug!"

He is beaming. I look through the mesh. Before I see the bug, Flik announces with glee, "It's a mosquito!"

I can't stop giggling. Both at his pure excitement and the hilarity of catching a mosquito.

"Daddy said I can keep it as a pet!"

He is still delighted, but is looking at me as though he senses that I may veto Daddy's decision.

"Sure, you can keep it. But you're not bringing it into the house. It's staying in the garage."

I look at Daddy. "How did he catch a mosquito?" Daddy informs me that Flik left the door to the bug hotel open and was delighted to find that a mosquito had wandered in on its own.

"We need to feed it," Flik chimes in.

"Well, you're on your own, kid. Because I am not feeding the mosquito."

"Why not?"

"Because mosquitoes eat blood. You need to let it bite you if you want to feed it. And do you want the mosquito to bite you?"

I am questioning this tack, as I also do not want my kid volunteering his arm to the mosquito. I'm hoping he is with me on this. He thinks it over.

"No, Mommy. We can just give it bug food."

"Sorry, kiddo. But bug food, for that bug, is you. And I'd prefer it if we not let the bug eat you."

He thinks it over.

"OK. But can I still keep it?"

"Absolutely. In the garage."

The next morning we are headed out and before hopping into the car, Flik bounds over to the bug hotel sitting on top of the garbage can. At the bottom of the empty bug hotel lies a dead mosquito.

"I guess it died because we didn't feed it," he says.


"Oh well."

And with that, he skips over to the car and climbs in. It would be kinda' sad... if we weren't talking about a mosquito.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Another Tender Moment: Good

As a general rule at our house, children do not sleep in bed with the grown ups. It is not forbidden, but it is viewed as a special treat.

Last night, Flik came into our room around 1 a.m. He sounded really sad and we thought he had had a bad dream or something. But when asked, he said no, that he just wanted to sleep with Daddy. (Yes, Daddy. Mommy... not really a factor.)

We let him climb into bed and he laid down between us. I don't get to snuggle with my little boy very much. He's not really a snuggler. So with this rare opportunity where I have a half sleeping boy lying right beside me, I rolled onto my side to face him and placed my hand on his shoulder. I just looked at him for a moment and then said very softly, "I love you, Sweetie." I listened to him breathe a couple slow breaths, not expecting a response from my sleeping darling when he then quietly responds, "Good."

Oh, the tender moments.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Disappearing Friends

While driving with Flik today, we had the following conversation:
Flik: Next time I have a party, for my birthday or something, I think I might make some of the kids disappear.

Mommy: (Trying to assume that there are good intentions here somewhere. Maybe he wants to be a magician.) Why do you want to make your friends disappear?

Flik: Because if I have too many friends, they'll eat all my cake?

Mommy: (Yeah, that's not what I was hoping for.) Well why don't we just get more cake so that there's enough for everyone?

Flik: But what if they still eat all my cake?

Mommy: Well then why don't we just invite fewer kids?

Flik: Nah. We can just make them disappear. That'd be easier.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Appeasing Z

When Z gets fussy, but it's too early for a nap, there are a few go to things that will placate him. One is giving him access to crackers (really, anything edible would probably work.) But since we don't want him to turn into a 100 pound baby, we usually resort to some of our other "tricks." Here is one. My mom tells me that when I was a baby, my babysitter used to do this to me and get a huge kick out of it. I actually remember her doing it to my baby sister. As you'll see though, once you start, stopping isn't an option.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Letters as Art

Flik was writing on his easel. He picks up a marker and writes an A. Then an O. Then another A. Then a Y.

This does not seem to be forming a word. Since I know he can spell any number of words, I ask him, "What are you writing?"

He responds, "I don't know yet. I'm not done."

I love this moment. I love that he can think of letters as having infinite possibilities; that he can string them together to see what he gets. I love that he can remind me that you don't always have to know what your goal is; sometimes you can just see where the letters take you.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Nine Months Old!

Oh my goodness, Z is nine months old today! As my husband reminded me today, Z has now spent as much time outside my belly as he did in it.

So now it's time for the monthly rundown of Z's development. According to the authors of the What to Expect... book series, our baby Z...

... should be able to:

  • work to get a toy that's out of reach
    Check. And now that he's finally "crawling" (sort of) he's off to the races after those toys. And he's almost to big for the Bumbo, since if he drops a toy, he'll practically pop himself out of it stretching to reach a toy that's out of reach.
  • look for a dropped object
    Check. Thankfully, this has not become a game... yet.

... is probably able to:

  • pull up to standing position from sitting
    Still no. Geez, Z! What gives? We still haven't even lowered his crib yet. He doesn't even try.
  • creep or crawl
    Creep, yes. Crawl, no. He gets up on his hands and knees, but when he wants to get around, he's back on his belly. He looks like he has no use of his legs as he drags himself around. However, his time in the jumperoo confirms: his legs are fully functional.
  • get into a sitting position from stomach
    No. Gosh my baby is a slacker. Instead, he just props himself up on his elbow when he's laying on his side. But he won't try to actually sit.
  • object if you try to take a toy away
    Definitely yes. Enough said.
  • stand holding on to someone or something
    Another no for the probably column. Hmm. Z is not into being upright.
  • pick up tiny object with any part of thumb and finger
    Nope. He still grabs those Puffs with his whole hand.

Well, Z... the "probably" list wasn't promising. So the "may possibly" list is going to be a hoot.

... may possibly be able to:

  • play patty-cake (clap hands) or wave bye-bye
  • walk holding on to furniture
  • understand "no" (but not always obey it)

... may even be able to:

(this should be good)

  • "play ball" (roll ball back to you)
  • drink from a cup independently
    A cup? Really? Was I supposed to be giving him cups?
  • pick up a tiny object neatly with tips of thumb and forefinger
  • stand alone momentarily
  • stand alone well
    Still no.
  • say "dada" or "mama" indiscriminately
    Um, no. He says "baba" and "yaya" indisriminately.
  • say one word other than "mama" or "dada"
    YES! "baba" I'm not getting too excited. It is very indiscriminate.
  • respond to one-step command with gestures ("Give that to me," said with hand out
    Really? OK, no. My baby cannot do that. Whatever. Why do I do this every month?

More about Z:
  • Z still only has the two teeth (both on the bottom). No new teeth this month.
  • Z is regularly sleeping through the night. He's in bed between 7-8 and wakes up around 6:30. He's been a little sick lately, so he's been waking up around 5. We are hopeful that this passes when the virus vacates our home.
  • Z has been spoiled and has been being rocked to sleep every night up until this last month. Rocking suddenly became playtime instead of relax and fall asleep time, so he's been put in his crib awake. He is not a fan. But he usually falls asleep within 30 minutes, which is wonderful! And as I said, he's sleeping through the night.
  • Z still has a solid two naps, but they are also pretty variable. Never know whether he's going to sleep for one hour or three.
  • Z is still eating stage two baby food. But he's also a huge fan of crackers. Actually, he's a huge fan of anything edible. If he could get food out of the pantry without my help, I'm pretty sure I'd have a 100 pound baby.
  • Z still has a pacifier when in his crib. Mommy is still not happy about this.
  • Z LOVES peek-a-boo. Whether we cover his eyes while changing his diaper or peek out of the pantry while he's in his highchair, he is all smiles and giggles.
  • Z can play by himself for long periods of time without getting fussy. As long as he's not hungry or sleepy, he can amuse himself quite happily with his toys while Mommy and Daddy take showers or do laundry or work.
So all in all, I'm pretty happy with this little baby of mine. He may not be sitting or cruising or standing, but he is sleeping through the night, plays by himself, and falls asleep on his own within thirty minutes. All in all, I'd say he's a keeper. Plus, he's super cute.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A Ton of Bricks

I am not a huge fan of country music, but I have developed a tolerance to a select few country artists that I've actually grown fond of. The Daddy ant goes through phases where he listens to lots of country. He was going through one of those phases right around the time that Flik was born.

After Flik was born, he was very jaundiced. Every day after we got home, we had to bring him to the doctor's office to have his blood checked to see if his bilirubin levels were going down. A few days after Flik was born, we were on one of those trips to the doctor when I heard a newly released country song for the first time. Daddy was driving and I was sitting in the backseat with my baby because he cried so much when he was in his carseat.
Drivin' through town just my boy and me
With a Happy Meal in his booster seat
Knowin' that he couldn't have the toy 'til his nuggets were gone

A green traffic light turned straight to red
I hit in my brakes and mumbled under my breath
His fries went a flyin' and his orange drink covered his lap

Well, then my 4 year old said a 4 letter word
It started with 'S' and I was concerned
So I said, "Son, now where'd you learn to talk like that?"

He said, "I've been watching you, Dad ain't that cool?
I'm your buckaroo, I want to be like you
And eat all my food, and grow as tall as you are?

We got cowboy boots and camo pants
Yeah, we're just alike, hey, ain't we dad
I want to do everything you do
So I've been watching you"
I had just given birth and was a hormonal mess. I was in tears as I looked at my brand new baby and thought of him growing up and hanging out with his Daddy.

Fast forward 4 1/2 years to today. I was at work. I was working. I was listening to music on my iPhone. I have a playlist specifically for when I'm tired of listening to the same music over and over. It's called "Least Played" and it's automatically filled with anything that hasn't been played in the last 3 months. So today I was sitting at my desk, listening to music, and this song comes on.
Drivin' through town just my boy and me
With a Happy Meal in his booster seat

Well, then my 4 year old said a 4 letter word
It started with 'S' and I was concerned
At that is when it hit me. Oh my God! My baby is a 4 year old. I got as teary listening to this song today as I did the first time I heard it.

The first time I heard this song, my baby looked like this:

And here he is now (with his baby brother):

I know that my little boy is growing up, and he's doing it awful fast. But sometimes it catches you off guard. Sometimes it hits you like a ton of bricks.


FYI: The song is Watching You by Rodney Atkins.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sunday Moments

Mommy created her first ever movie using iMovie on her iPad today. It features our favorite little ants. Enjoy.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Flik's Spring Performance 2011

Yesterday was Flik's last day of pre-school (for this year, anyway) and last night was the school's spring performance. Flik had been sick for the last week or so, but he is all better now. Unfortunately, his virus has found a new host. At the last minute, we decided that Z was probably better off staying home, so Daddy stayed home and Flik & Mommy headed to the big performance. The school performed You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown. Flik's class sang The Kite. The whole performance with all of the classes was a little long, wrapping up around 9 pm, but it was just adorable. Parents waving to their kids on stage, kids waving back, 4 year olds enthralled or frozen in place with the awe of the "big stage." I think I would have enjoyed it just as much if all they did was parade the classes up there one at a time and just let them play on the stage for five minutes. The on and off the stage was my favorite part.

I tried uploading the video of the performance, but I was experiencing technical difficulties. Sorry. But trust me... Flik was adorable.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Field Trip Chaperone

Normally, I tell you all about the firsts for the boys, but today was a first for Mommy. Today Mommy got to be a field trip chaperone for the first time ever. It was a blast. We went to the zoo. Mommy had four charges, including Flik. The weather was beautiful, the zoo was small, and the children were SO well behaved. As we walked from animal to animal they all four fought over who got to hold my hand that time. We saw eagles and vultures and a tortoise and parrots and turtles and crocodiles and a python and a boa constrictor and ducks and elk and a wolf. We ate lunch at a picnic table in the shade. The kids ran around under the trees. We rode a tram around the park.

It wasn't a perfect day, but the imperfections are a subject for my other blog. (Sarcasm 101: If I Ran the Zoo) Overall, it was a really great day.