Monday, December 31, 2012

Chwistmas with a Two Yea Old

If I haven''t said it before, I'll say it again.  I wish I could spend every Christmas with a two year old.  They have a basic understanding of the decorations, the reindeer, the big man.  They can sing along to the music and point out the "decowations" from the back seat.  They get excited about the tree and most certainly, the pwesents.  They don't have that gimme gimme attitude just yet either.
The gimme gimme doesn't arrive until Christmas Eve when they get their first taste of present opening.  For Bennett, it didn't so much matter what was in the box, as long as it meant shredding of paper and moving on to the next package.  In fact, it didn't matter if the gift was for him, as long as it meant more, more!

Now, this is a good thing because I knew between the grandparents, aunts and cousins this kid was going to be spoiled and wouldn't give much credit to Santa or his parents.  Mommydaddy (we're frequently one word around here) gifted clothes and books.  Santa got a break with the requested hard hat, (play) food, fireman rainboots (that he won't wear), and play dough.  I suppose we shouldn't be surprised that the biggest hit was the $5 assorted play dough accessories.

There were many other winners this Christmas.  A cash register, "It works!" McQueen cars, two "hammas," a bowling set, and a socca ball.

 Guess what the socca ball is now used for! 

Occassionally, two yea olds remember to say "gank you."  If not, a hug will suffice.
And this will be the only family photo captured for all prosperity.
If you haven't already experienced a Christmas season with a two-year old, I highly recommend you do it .  At least once.  Maybe a few times.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

What We Learned: 26 Months

I probably shouldn't admit this, but there was a time I didn't think my child was all that smart.  When he was about ten months old and didn't give two hoots about crawling, never the less rolling over, I figured this kid to be a lazy one.  He would be enamored with an old box of junk for 40 minutes but wasn't too interested in age appropriate toys.  We all know he wasn't much of a talker until about a year ago.  But at 26 months, I am constantly impressed with his new skills and understanding. 
Yesterday, I explained to him that we had to put on his socks because it was cold in the house.  He said, "the air come out?"  I asked him "what air came out?"  "Outta the frigerator!"  Tell me, this kid isn't a genius.
Bennett learned not to be afraid of the bathtub or the barber.
We learned that it is possible to be cough and runny nose free during cold season. 
Bennett learned bilingual songs in preschool.
We learned Bennett knows more Spanish than his 1/4 Panamanian father.
Bennett learned how to fix everything in the house.
We learned a child can never have too many tools.
Bennett learned the words to Rudolph and Jingle Bells.
We learned that he really only likes to sing "HAY!"
Bennett learned that while Santa is a nice man, you don't want to get too close.
We learned that we should listen when he says, "no thank you."

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Wishing You Joy...

...hope, and peace.  And a two year old at every Christmas feast!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Twas the Fifth Day Before Christmas When

The Wreaths Were Picked
The Bows Tied
The Stockings Hung

The Tree Trimmed

The Halls Decked

The Tables Set

An Atticus on Watch
And a long shopping list left untouched...

Monday, December 17, 2012

The Scared List

Our first trip to Santa was successful. At just five weeks old, Bennett woke up, smiled on cue and fell back asleep. Last year, he was too scared to even cry.
I tried to prepare Bennett this year. I told him Santa is a nice man; he brings good kids toys. He laughs like a bowl full of jelly.
When we arrived at the Country Music Hall of Fame to tell the big man about his desire for a hard hat, he waved from a distance. He whispered his wish list ("hard hat, toys, food"). When we got to the front of the line, his legs gripped my waist and his little fingers pinched my skin. As we approached, he started screaming. I couldn't even set him on the old man's lap. 
Maybe next year?

Friday, December 14, 2012

If I were the type of person that wrote Christmas newsletters...

I can barely get my cards out the door before New Year’s, despite the fact that the photos were taken in September and the printer delivered them to me a month ago.  Ignoring that fact, when I sat back to reflect on life since my last Christmas card, I was reminded why I don’t bother.  It would go something like this:


Monday, December 3, 2012

He's on the Smart List

Yesterday morning, Bennett and I were playing with his talking dump truck.  (Everyone has one of those, right?).  The dump truck told Bennett to put his hard hat on.  Bennett looked at me with a confused face and said, "I want a hard hat."  I asked him if he would like one for Christams and if so, he should ask Santa Claus when we see him next.  His confused face returned, then he ran into the dining room, looked at the framed picture of Baby Bennett sitting on Santa's lap and said, "Hard hat please!"

And then I died. And then, I put one in my shopping cart. 

Friday, November 30, 2012

What We Learned: 25 Months

Even with his mouth full of cheeseburger, this boy is a talker.  He is a storyteller.  He is astute and curious, asking questions and more often, giving directions.  Some might call that bossy, but we'll just say he's opinionated. 

Bennett learned to properly say pizza.

We learned how sad it is to say good bye to his baby talk, but at least we still have "gank you."

Bennett learned to be (video) camera shy.

We learned we may never get a "gank you" on tape.

Bennett learned to whine his way into getting what he wants.

We learned that secret to a dinner out is youtube and an Iphone.

Bennett learned how to feed the cows and turkeys.

We learned that Bennett thinks the calves are his babies.

Bennett learned the words to "Wheels on the Bus," and "Going on a Bear Hunt."

We learned what windshield wipers, bus drivers and caves can be relevant to just about any conversation.

Bennett learned to correctly identify guitar, drum and piano in a song.

We learned that it doesn't take much to be more musically inclined than his parents. 

Bennett learned to say "getta outta my way."

We learned that 24 months isn't too long to wait to hear "I love you."

Thursday, November 22, 2012


It seems trite to write an annual thankful post when everyone else around the country is writing similar memes.  But when I am feeling burdened by the daily grind, it seems essential to remind myself that I have a lot to be thankful for not just today, but everyday.  How is that for trite?

I am thankful that this will be the first year I'll get to share one of my most favorite Thanksgiving traditions with my son, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade! 

I am thankful for Bennett's growing vocabulary.  There was a time when I obsessed over his development, and now I am just grateful for every "it's mine," "no mommy," "I don't like dat," and "microwave."

I am thankful that Rocky and I have decent jobs.  Hopefully, next year I'll be able to say we have decent benefits too.

I am thankful that despite weeks long runny noses and coughs that won't go away, we're mostly healthy. 

I am so thankful for our home. It feels so good to give my child space to play, a yard to enjoy, and room to grow.

I am thankful for my parents.  They are so generous with their time, walking Atticus, picking up Bennett and giving us an afternoon off to be responsible or reckless.

I am so thankful for my in-laws.  They love me like a daughter and Bennett like a King.

I am so thankful for my friends.  They listen to my gripes, they understand my frustrations and they cheer for my minor victories, like my crafting.

I am so thankful for my husband.  Any man that can put up with my twelve-year old sweatpants is a keeper.

I am so thankful I still fit in my twelve-year old sweatpants.  I have a feeling I'll be needing them tonight.

Happy Thanksgiving y'all!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

We've Been Busy

Fixing da roof.

Learning manners.
Playing with our new toys.
Painting pretty pictures 

And never tiring of reading Halloween cards from Great Grandma June.

You know, the usual. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

How Pinteresting

So, I have replaced my blogging time with Pinterest.  I spend way too much time looking at interior design projects that are very child un-friendly and oreo cookie turkeys.  But at least I can say they are inspiring me to invest in window treatments, get back in the kitchen, and get my craft on. 
At the very least, I can show some in-progress home projects.
The room doesn't look quite so blue and blah in person.  You should come visit and see for yourself.  We could pin together.

The inspiration of strangers makes me do crazy things like introduce brass when I swore it off forever.  I live on the wild side. 

Like that time I spent three nights making a yarn wreath.  Rocky makes fun of me for crafting.

Maybe Pinterest can teach me how to fix those stairs.  Nothing says home like some dying mums and stained concrete.  Thanks Pinterest!

Monday, November 5, 2012

He's Sceered

Along with his newfound understanding of emotions is his newfound fear of fear.  He was never afraid of the dark, thunder, bugs, or the fiscal cliff until just recently.  Now, he always had an unfounded distaste of headwear, but that didn't pose a problem last halloween when he willingly donned a cow costume.  This year, things were a little different.

Rocky's cousin loaned us her daughter's Cat in the Hat costume and I was so excited for Bennett to wear it.  I stayed up late the night before fixing the hat and assembling the fuzzy white belly shirt.  We had been talking up the costume, reading him the book, and occassionally catching an episode of the show on PBS.  When the time came he cried at the hat, pulled off the bow tie and tried to rip apart the belly.  I was so sad and now we were running late for school.

I ran upstairs and ruffled through his old baby clothes and borrowed his future Christmas overalls.  Desperate times call for desperate measures.  We got to school l.a.t.e. only to find that he was the only one already dressed for the halloween party.  Because of course.

At least he looked cute from behind.
 Fear has also translated to hatred of smiling at the camera.
Unless I want a mug like this. 
Worst of all, very few people recognized his last-minute get-up.
On top of costume meltdowns, we made it late to a party an then didn't get a single trick or treater!  At least sweet cards from Grandma June can put this kid in the spirit. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bennett was a good little monkey

And always curious!
Let me preface this deluge of personal photos by saying that my child loves George.  Loves.  Like if he has 100 books, he gravitates to the old ratty Curious George from my childhood.  Like, if you want him to eat his vegetables, turn on PBS and he will not only eat his peas, he will let you comb his hair and brush his teeth.  There really wasn't any doubt how we'd celebrate my big boy turning 2...
...with a really ridiculous cake compensating for the fact that no bakery supports copywrighted images!

And for the second year in a row, we had balloon drama.  Poor B had no 'boons!  At least his mom got fake crafty.

Who wouldn't make a whirlwind day trip for a kid that won't remember who was there?

At least I allowed a couple kids to help party!

A 'tar, for writing more original lyrics like his breakout hit, Mommadad mommadad...

He tried so hard to blow out that candle.

Good thing the cake serves dozens because all he wants is the frosting.
His real birthday was yesterday.  I took the day off because I make a big deal about my own birthday and now I can spend my energy on someone who really deserves it.  I tortured him with a trip to get a bicycle helmet and a trip to the mall to get another kid a present.  But we did get to practice riding our new bike and have a nice lunch just the two of us. 
Last year, his birthday felt like it was as much my party as his.  I was proud to celebrate 365 days of surviving bad sleep, nursing, pumping, and unpredictable mood swings.  While our sleep has moderately improved, his favorite food is now frosting, and the mood swings are still pervasive, he is now his own person and not just an extension of my body.  However, he will always be an extension of my heart. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

What We Learned: 24 Months

My baby boy is two!  But if you ask him, he's not a baby, he is a big boy.  And it is true, at two he is no longer a baby.  He runs.  He jumps.  He yells and giggles and tells stories.  He fixes the roof and digs a hole and climbs the fence.  He is fearless and funny.  When the doctor announced we were having a boy, this is exactly the little person I dreamed of.  But two years ago I could never have imagined this day would arrive so soon.
Bennett learned he can do it.
We learned not to question it.
Bennett learned about emotions.
I learned he can learn an emotion and apply it to characters in a book, Curious George on tv and momma in the mornings.
Bennett learned to walk sideways.
We learned that he can fix it.
Bennett learned that his name isn't "me."
We learned that he thinks is name is "kid."
Bennett learned how to use a zipper.
We learned that it is his job.
Bennett learned that happy birthday to you typically ends with cake.
We learned that the song either ends with eating cake or screaming "cake!"
Bennett learned that on your birthday you turn six.
We learned that if two arrived this fast, six will be here soon enough as it is.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Obligatory Post About that Time We Went to the Pumpkin Patch

Mom+Blog+October=Pumpkin Post
I believe this might be the reason why many parents have more than one child, to save themselves from these kinds of photo situations.

I strongly encourage you to embiggen this picture so you can see the hilarity of that face.  THAT FACE!
City kid pumpkin patches also have million dollar model trains.

Scarecrows with hair almost as scary as momma's. 
It was a city kid pumpkin patch, meaning they only had perfectly shaped pumpkins for sale. Of course my child chose the one that looked like it would be left behind, exclaiming, "it heaby." He then named it mommy pumpkin. Thanks kid.