Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Cheeky Children

Apparently we in America today are raising rather forward children.  They have no inhibitions whatsoever.  Kiss anyone you like?  Sure!  Ask someone of the opposite gender over for a sleepover?  Absolutely!

Allow me to explain.

On Monday we went over to Mary's house for a barbecue.  You know, cause it was Memorial Day.  And we could.  Since Jack is cute and a baby everyone wanted to hold him.  Something you should know about Jack is that his way of saying "hello" is to grab your face.  If you pass inspection, he will hang out with you.  If you do not, he will either dive back to my arms or to the ground, whichever is closer.

In the midst of the barbecue, Jack happened to be sitting on my friend Becca's lap.  She passed the face test so Jack was happily sitting there, trying to remove her sunglasses when all of the sudden he leaned up and kissed her.  All open-mouthed and slobbery.  And right on the lips.

I think he may have a bit of a crush.

This is Becca and me at Disneyland.  She's a hottie.

Tonight we went to Lewis' and Daniel's hockey game.  The game started after Jack's bedtime, so he was pretty sleepy.  While I was bouncing him in my arms, trying to see if he would drift off, this delightful little lady of about four came right up and introduced herself (actually introducing herself was the last thing in our conversation she did - she ran up and told us her name after the conversation was over because she apparently had forgotten).  After praising Jack for his adorability and blue eyes (along with her brown ones and sassy shoes), she invited him over to the slumber party she was having that night with several of her friends.

Even when he's out of focus, Jack is too cool for school.  And sleepovers.

As much as I would appreciate a full night's rest, I had to decline.  Somehow I didn't think Jack is quite ready for a night away from home.

Kids these days.

Monday, May 28, 2012

A Rooster in a Crib

Reason number 26 why I love Daylight Savings:

No matter what time he goes to bed the night before, Jack gets up each morning with the sun.  Without daylight savings, he would have been up at five this morning, instead of the much more reasonable six o'clock hour.

I'm an early-riser already, but five AM is a little too early, even for me.  The good news is that Jack is absolutely charming when he gets up in the morning and is (usually) perfectly content to play in baby jail while I catch a few more winks.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Tasty Treats

The following is a list of things that have found their way into Jack's mouth today.

- The one piece of broccoli that I missed when I was cleaning up after dropping the blender jar on the floor.  I think it was under the fridge.

- An old remote that I had just used to kill a spider.

- The wash cloth Lewis was trying to use to scrub him during his bath.

- Toilet paper.  He figured out how the rolls work.

At the end of the day all I can do is point out that he is still alive, thankyouverymuch.

I guess he did get some real food in there, too.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Kisses for Jesus

Jack is a fan of giving big, slobbery, open-mouthed kisses.  I am frequently woken up in the morning with such kisses, along with a good tug to my hair.

This morning Jack was chewing on Lewis' copy of "For the Strength of Youth."  ("For the Strength of Youth" is a pamphlet produced by our church outlining our standards for teenagers to live happy, clean lives.)  As he was enjoying the tasty pamphlet, I noticed he was continually pressing one page in particular to his face with his mouth wide open, like he was giving it a kiss.  I pulled the booklet away from him (he's generally not allowed to eat paper products) and saw what was on the page he was kissing.

It was a picture of Jesus.

All together now: "Awww!"

I turned the book to other pages to see if he would kiss those too.  He would not.  Then I turned back to the page with Jesus on it and he kissed it again.

Coincidence?  I don't believe in coincidences!  But probably, yeah.

Still, that kid sure knows how to melt my heart.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Talented Toesies

I have incredible toes.

I tell you this not to be braggy.  No, this is just background information for the forthcoming story.  My toes can pick up pretty much anything.  They've always had this gift, but when I was pregnant and too large to properly bend down, well... that's when my talent flourished.  You name it, I can pick it up with my toes.  Laundry?  Challenge me!  Coins?  Not a problem!  Books?  Piece of cake!

See that foot in the background?  It has a gift.

This gift really came in handy earlier this week.

Jack decided that he would like nothing better than to be held.  All.  Day.  Long.

If you've ever held him, you know that you can't just hold Jack.  He doesn't just sit there, being held.  He wiggles.  And squirms.  And tries to see whatever is behind him - even if what it behind him is what was just barely in front of him.  It's quite tiring.

On this particular day I had quite a bit to do.  Lewis and his students were putting on a program and I had to get dinner made in time to bring it to him beforehand.  I had finally gotten Jack distracted with toys enough that I could get stuff done.

Jack decided he'd had enough of the toys the very second I had germed up my hands in raw chicken.  He's splendid with the timing and all.  There wasn't much I could do with chicken hands, so I just let him cry and fuss at my ankles, while I cut the chicken as quickly as I could.

Meanwhile, Jack gave up on trying to crawl up my legs and instead turned his attention to my iPad, which was playing music on one of our barstools.  So there I was, with germy chicken hands and a baby perilously close to destroying my iPad by pulling it off of a relatively high surface.  What's a girl to do?

Enter my talented toesies.  I was able to successfully move the iPad from the barstool on to the counter, out of Jack's reach (an elbow or two may have been involved in pushing the iPad to the requisite height).

Yep.  My toes push me over the border into Super-Mommydom.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Open Mouth, Insert Food

Jack's new favorite thing to do is share.  Several times a day I am offered a pacifier, graham cracker, or bath toy.  And by "offered," I mean I have those items shoved in my mouth.

Want a bite?

It's very sweet.

Except for the part where Jack thinks that this sharing thing should be reciprocal.  I can't eat a bite of anything without him crawling over, pulling himself to his feet by grabbing onto my legs, staring at me with those irresistible baby blues, and opening his mouth wide in the direction of my food.  If he happens to be close enough, he will just grab a handful of whatever is on my plate without even skipping a beat.

Another thing Jack has mastered is guilt.  If I happen to finish my meal without offering him any, he won't cry; instead he will look at me with sad eyes and then slowly crawl away as if the weight of the world was on his shoulders.  All he wanted was a taste of ice cream!

Somehow I feel as if I have been wrapped around some short dude's little finger.  Hmm.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers Day to Me

For Mothers Day, I asked Jack for two things.  He could either sleep through the night (har, har) or he could figure out how to say "ma" consistently.  He has "da" down pat, and I'm insanely jealous.

Apparently he had a different gift in mind altogether.

That's pee.

Happy Mothers Day, one and all!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

What a Pain in the Knee

I ran a 5K today.

I'm not telling you this to get you to think that I am awesome.  You should think that, regardless.

No, I am telling you this so that you understand how I have been slowly dying ever since.

While I was out jogging last Tuesday, my knee started to hurt.  It is not unusual for something of mine to hurt - just a few weeks ago I had a broken toe from when a bottle of shampoo fell on it in the shower, and I stubbed a different toe a mere half hour ago - but it is unusual for me to have an unexplained pain.  I inflict enough pain on my body all by myself that there is hardly any room for anything else to be hurt.

The knee thing was different.  It wasn't swollen.  I hadn't twisted it funny or done anything strenuous with it.  My knee just hurt.  For no good reason.  So I cut my run short and took it easy for the next few days, so I could still do this run today.

The 5K went beautifully.  Running is just amazing, let me tell you what.  I was on such a high after it was over.  And my knee didn't bug me at all!  Well, not until the last stretch anyway.  It was all downhill, but I ignored the pain and let my momentum carry me through to the end and to my kid who had just realized I wasn't with him and who was a bit displeased about this fact.

Jack wouldn't let me out of his sight after I got back.
Then the pain really began.

Pretty soon I could barely walk.  Stairs were excruciating.  The pain started shooting to my ankle.  I was THIS CLOSE to just cutting my whole leg off and growing a new one.

And then there was the mail.

I love getting mail.  It's one of my favorite things in the world.  And no stinking knee was going to stop me from getting it today!

The walk to the mailbox was agony.  I'm sure I looked a sight to all of our neighbors.  But it would be worth it, just to get the mail.

But there wasn't any.  I'd made the torturous walk for nothing.  Nothing!

My life is so hard.

In other news, Lewis ran too.  As is common for many runners of such races, Lewis experienced a bit of mild chafing.  He attempted to alleviate the issue with some of Jack's extra-strength diaper cream.  He said it "feels like my bum is sitting in a bowl of ice cream."

Lew's triumphant finish.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Jack is Behind Door Number One

Jack figured out doors.

Not the knob thing, so much.  Just that they can be opened or closed through pushing, depending on which side you are on.

What does this mean for me?  It means that whatever little privacy I had has now evaporated.

You see, I usually leave the bathroom door ajar when I use it, just in case Jack gets into any trouble.  But now that he figured out how to push open the door, instead of just sitting outside, waiting for me to come out, he now welcomes himself right on in.

I learned quickly to shut the door all the way.  So instead Jack will lie down at the bottom of the door, stick his weeny hands under it, and make the weird noises he makes.

When he's not infringing on my me time, Jack likes to shut himself in the closet with the light off.  I don't even think he noticed he couldn't see until I opened the door.  He was just sitting there, happy as a clam, snacking on the shoe lace of my left hiking boot.

He's very proud of his cleverness.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Our Little Prodigy

Remember this?

Yesterday, Lewis stepped on it.  Now, it's no Lego, but it can't have felt good.  In anger and pain, Lewis kicked it across the room.

Where it bounced off of a large blue ball.

And headed straight for Jack, at a rather high velocity.

Jack didn't even flinch.  He just calmly opened his hand and freaking caught the fence.

It all happened so fast, I didn't even have time to flip out.

Between this and his height, Jack clearly has a future in some kind of athletic competition.

We just need to get some meat on his bones.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Phantom Lullabies

I grew up in a home where music was constantly playing.  In the car the radio was always tuned to the oldies station.  At home there was always a CD on; usually either the Beatles or some musical.  My mom is a big fan of the musicals.  Two of her favorites back in the day (and still) were Les Miserables and the Phantom of the Opera.  I got to know the soundtracks to these musicals very well.  Especially the boy parts.  My sister would want to sing the pretty songs and duets with someone, but my brothers weren't interested, so that left me.  Eleven-year-old Alyssa could do a pretty dang good Marius, if I do say so myself.

The Christmas season was more of the same, except Les Mis and Phantom were replaced by "A Christmas Spectacular of Carols and Songs," which was a recording of a Christmas concert by the casts of various Broadway productions, and Michael Crawford's "A Christmas Album."

If you didn't already know this, Michael Crawford originated the role of title character in the Phantom of the Opera.  And if you've heard him sing, you know he's got a pretty unique voice.  The only thing I knew hims from was Phantom.  So when my mom would play his Christmas album, little ol' me thought that it wasn't Michael Crawford singing those beloved carols, but it was actually the Phantom singing them.  Now, don't get me wrong - he sang them beautifully!  I was and am a big fan of his cover of "O Holy Night, " s'matter of fact.  I guess at the time I just figured that the Phantom did a Christmas special, a la Charlie Brown.

I believed this for an embarrassingly long time.

Smash cut to these days.  I take after my mom in that I have music going pretty much all the time.  Since I had Jack, I've been spending a lot of time playing the lullaby station on Pandora.  It's actually a pretty sweet station.  It plays a healthy mix of traditional lullabies, soft Disney tunes, big-time singer covers of traditional lullabies, and even some music you might hear on the radio today.  The chill stuff.  It's very hip.  At least I think so.  I'm not so sure what is hip these days.

The other day we were listening to it when "Baby Mine" started to play.  I smiled inwardly, wondering if Jack would recognize it from when I sing it to him (it's one of the songs in our bedtime rotation).  That is, until the singer began and I found myself hastily switching to the next song.

Why?  Because the singer was Michael Crawford.

Again, don't get me wrong.  He has a lovely voice!  Divine!  But in that moment when he started singing the song Jack and I know so well - one of our songs, I just couldn't get past the idea that had formed in my head all those years ago with the Christmas album:  That it was the Phantom - of the Opera - singing that sweet tune.

And even though it didn't bother me that we listened to his Christmas album when I was a kid, and I didn't find it creepy at all back then, I just didn't feel right allowing the Phantom - of the OPERA - to serenade my child.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

I'm a Runner. I Run.

I've always considered myself a runner.  Even when I go embarrassingly long stretches between runs.

Tonight I went on my first run in a really long time.

Oh my heavens, it was miserable.

My lungs burned, my ribs ached, my legs throbbed.  I hurt in places I've never hurt before.  Something about having a watermelon-sized human being in my uterus eight months ago must have moved some stuff around.  Or something.

And I loved every second of it.

Running has always been a good release for me.  I started running in middle school after I beat one of the fittest guys in school in a PE run of the mile.  Later, when I was bullied, it became a way to escape the crappiness that was junior high.

Of course the mean girls tried to take that away from me too, but luckily for me they were kind of dumb.  Back in the diz-ay, I was really skinny.  Like woah.  I think my siblings described me as "a toothpick with a crash helmet on."  So the mean girls used to tell everyone that I was anorexic and bulimic (yes, both) and the only reason I did so well during races was because the wind would push me around the track.  Sound theory, if it wasn't for the crucial little fact that tracks are ROUND.

I'll let you work out the physics of it all on your own.

In any case, I'm running again now.  Just in time too, cause Lewis' school is hosting a 5k fun run next week.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Mercy Me!

If you saw me today and thought that I looked tired, allow me to offer an explanation for why that is.

I'm tired.

We all are actually.  All of us in the Young household.  We were doing great with the whole sleep thing.  We had a system going that was working.  Everyone was getting the sleep they needed.  Every night.

And then it all EXPLODED.

Because Jack - dear, dear Jack - decided that pulling himself to his feet and screaming is a much more better thing to do than sleep.

This is how it has gone over the past week, at every nap and bedtime (and a couple of times in the middle of each night, for that matter):

-We go through our nap/bedtime routine, same as it has been for all of the year two-thousand and twelve.

-Jack starts to nod off in my arms, so I start to put him down in his crib (I usually put him in bed before he is asleep so he can get there by himself, but not lately because of...well, this).

-Jack touches down in his crib, his eyes fly open, he looks around wildly, sees he is in his crib, and starts to sob as he flips over and crawls in the most pathetic manner possible to the edge of the crib where he pulls himself up and wails towards the door that I have just exited.

-I hug myself in the fetal position and rock back and forth in my own bed hoping and praying that maybe this time he will remember how to self-soothe and will go to sleep all on his own.

Now I come to a request for you, dear blog readers.  If I, in the four years of my blog's existence, have ever amused you or tickled your fancy or made you nod your head in passionate agreement or even made you gasp in offense, I ask you this: commiserate with me.  Offer a kind word, a "This too shall pass."  I don't need advice.  I've heard it all.  I've tried it all.  I just need an "I've been there.  Sucks." or a "Keep your chin up, Champ."


Jack, plotting my doom.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Whatever Floats Your Boat

This is Jack.

This is Jack's favorite toy.

It's a fence that clips on to a Little People zoo thing.

He doesn't really do anything with it.  He just drags it around with him all over our living room while he explores, plays with other toys, and mischief-makes.  He doesn't seem to care if he doesn't have it, and if you take it away from him he just shrugs and moves on.  But if he happens to pick it up, it's always with him.

He's so weird.

A special thanks to the Boise Hirschis for donating the Little People zoo.  Jack is a big fan of the whole thing, not just the fence.
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