Sunday, October 29, 2006
Thursday, October 26, 2006
It's pumpkin season in case you haven't noticed. There are hay bales, hardy mums, and acorns everywhere.
And don't think he doesn't notice Every. Single. One.
I love this season. I love the colors and the weather and the football. It is such a welcome relief from that hot oppression of summer's end. Phew. We made it.
And speaking of making things ...
See that new sand/rock box? The Dad made it. That man is amazing. Took down that chicken coop and made a sandbox out of the old wood. Recycling King. The Goose had a little trouble during the part where a power drill was required (despite his otherwise insatiable obsession with tools, he has always been terrified of the power drill (and hairdryers, the coffee grinder, & the dustbuster)), but otherwise it was a painless and extremely quick project that was completed during the time it took me to hike around the lake.
Now, before I say anything else, I have to tell the story about the three of us going out last Saturday night to a cajun restaurant where my friend and colleague Donny Brazile was hosting a singing session with some of his songwriter buddies. We took The Goose. Or rather, we chaperoned him while he wooed eight-year olds in pink sweaters with silver teddy bear necklaces. If you ask him about the night, he'll say, "That li'l' girl. Pink sweater. I drum. I shake it. Uh-oh. I break it. Orange." And even though that's extremely clear, I'm going to be a Hovermom and explain: He fell in love with the girl, spent the whole night hugging and kissing her; next, he performed a drum solo and was introduced post-applause ... left the stage and high-fived one of the other performers on his way back to our table; then, he and Sweet Thing took turns shaking some sort of shaky percussion instrument thingy (can you tell I have a minor in music?) but UH-OH, some of it broke off (the orange part).
The only section of the night that he doesn't seem to remember (or can't find words for) is how, after each song, he applauded wholeheartedly but then, in the silence between the applause and the next number, shouted, "All done! Now, Ole MacDonald! Ee-eye-ee-eye-oh!" I was bent over double, crying in my jumbalaya.
This week he just blossomed:
Started really building things with his Lego blocks ...
Discovered that it's funny when you yank your pants up around your armpits ...
And began saying "thank you" without prompting.
It's been so good this week that I've been considering allowing him to get a brother or sister. Considering.
I like to think about things for a good, long time.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Thursday, October 19, 2006
This one's gonna have to be about the pictures. Not pictures of his first camping trip, mind you. Those would be NONEXISTANT on account of Mama forgot the camera. Does anybody know how Mama is able to get As in school and yet remain a complete idiot in her personal life? Do tell.
Here's the synopsis of that: we went, we saw, we ended up in the back of the car due to a rain and windstorm. We roasted marshmallows in the rain (The Goose's evaluation was: "I like it.") and then at promptly 6:36 p.m., he declared, "Night-night in the tent." And so it was. And other than us waking him up to transfer him from the relatively-dry-but-completely-unsafe-from-falling-limbs tent to the back of one Suzie Q. Subaru, he slept until 7:00 a.m. The same cannot be said for the Mama and the Dad. The Dad slept in the tent but was unable to sleep in the car due to being lodged against the spare tire. The Mom was unable to sleep in the tent but sacked out in the car despite the toddler legs wrapped all around her neck. A good time was had by all.
Do I use that line too much?
Click that picture above to see more pictures that are NOT of the camping trip ... and don't forget to read the comments about the pictures, which often are at least somewhat funny and/or informative.
Sunday, October 15, 2006
Took him to the pumpkin patch at Gentry Farms this afternoon. We spent over 30 minutes in the pig trough section:
The object is to scoop up all the dried corn kernels and put them in old water bottles. Then pour them all out and start over. It's brilliant, and not just because they charge $5 per person to get in (24 months and older).
And now, for your viewing pleasure, we'd like to present ...
HOW TO CHOOSE A PUMPKIN FROM THE EVERYTHING'S-A-DOLLAR BIN:
First, you saunter over and carefully peek in:
Second, reach in and get you one:
Third, hoist it up chanting, "Unnnnhhhh. Is avey." (heavy)
Fourth, turn and grin, proud of your selection:
Last, take it home.
What color is it?
Thursday, October 12, 2006
At least that's what he thinks.
And not much else matters.
Yesterday we had quite a day. We drove to Jackson, TN to see JEB's old babysitter (one of B's former students) who is attending college there. So most of these pictures are from our nearly 12-hours-away-from-home Family Wednesday -- the only day when we have all except 50 minutes together. I teach from 10:10 - 11:00 a.m., but otherwise it's like our Saturday.
Here's a recap:
There was tree climbing.
And book reading. What could be better than a book about Bob the Builder (i.e., "Bob Boeing"), his meow (Pilchard), and Scoop, Muck, Roley, and the gang?
And finally there was Pond/Duck Gazing. Quack. Nevermind that part where Mama got a little negligent in her efforts to take cute pictures and nearly dropped her baby in a pond.
But the highlight of the whole event -- for me -- was listening to him completely finish a verse of a Laurie Berkner song about making cookies. We were eating those delicious chocolate chip cookies that The Dad makes (secret family recipe) ... and I started singing the cookie song ... "Mix it, mix it, mix it 'til it's yummy ... mmm, mmm, mmm."
And then he finished it:
Tate it, tate it (taste it, taste it)
yummy in my tummy
mmm, mmm, mmm
shape it, shape it, shape it
'til it's ROUN----DDDddd
and row it, row it (roll it, roll it)
row it on the GROU-DDDddd (ground).
I'm telling you, I cheered and cheered like he had just thrown the winning touchdown, and then I made him do it one million more times. He is gifted, I just know it. He can spot the moon in its tiniest crescent stage in the middle of a daylight sky. He can see cotton fields blooming behind entire towns. He can find hidden birthday gifts on top of refrigerators. Birthday gifts taken away because even though pink dump trucks are really cool (custom paint job, of course), they sometimes have small parts which get frustrating for little fellas. I am not ashamed to gloat. Especially since we can all agree that it's true.
And then today while I was at work, The Dad and The Goose biked to the library in 45-degree weather.
This is not a picture of that; rather, this was taken last Sunday, but there is a bike in the picture, so give me some credit: it's late. Plus, I managed to successfully include a semicolon, comma, and colon in that last sentence. That is like unheard of.
By the time I got home at 1:00 p.m. today, this was the scene:
So he napped and I yoga'ed, and then four hours later he awakened chanting "Bob Boeing! Elmo go potty!" which, obviously, means, "I would like to watch a video, please."
So I acquiesced, but only after dumping 2.5 loads of laundry on the couch. Nevermind the mess ... He Will Be Comfortable:
At dinner tonight, he refused to eat anything except tofu, graham crackers, and pudding. And since he'll regularly scarf down an entire plate of steamed broccoli, I just let him have his way. And I was having Sprite to drink. Which I never have except maybe when we go out and there's no sweet tea. And he wanted some. And it was that kind of night (confession!) and so The Goose had his first taste of a softdrink. His response?
Hoe. Lee. Cow.
I am getting addicted to all this hilarity.
Sunday, October 08, 2006
The first is that my father-in-law berated me for not posting more pictures last week and I like him, so I wanna keep him happy.
The second is that this child has a new obsession: A Big Bike. It's called a Kettler and it's all the rage with two-year-old Germans. It has no pedals but it does have real wheels, a bell, and a basket (for Josie). It also has a license plate ... look closely at the number, it's meaningful.
Josie rides in the basket, and everytime there's a crash, she falls out and he gets up and says, "Josie OK, Mama." And I say, "Thank goodness, I was worried."
And before the grandmother's get all in a tizzy about his head gear, it should be noted again that there are NO PEDALS and that all he does is walk it around. He is much more in need of a helmet when he is running behind that blasted push cart, which I am about to trash in order to prevent an early heart attack.
Tonight when it was dinnertime and he had to say night-night to the bike, he cried for 40 minutes, refused to eat dinner, and went to bed sulking. I can't wait 'til Christmas.
On an unrelated note, I would just like to say publicly that I eat words. He had two kinds of accidents in his pants today at the train table at our favorite independent bookseller. I shouldn't have bragged about how he hasn't had an accident since his birthday. He had three today -- two in public, one in the foyer. For Christmas, we would really like a gift certificate for a carpet cleaning service (and a weekly maid) ... not that I'm one to hint.
Click the picture to see more shots of him learning to "ride" the Big Bike.
Thursday, October 05, 2006
Well I have three main things to tell about tonight. Now if that's not an obvious thesis statement then I don't know what is. Here they are, in chronological order:
First, I came home from Dallas with this cat, which was promptly named Josie. Josie has a rattle in her chest and a Halloween color scheme. She sleeps in the big boy bed, plays in the tent, goes potty, and eats blueberry oatmeal. A talented feline addition to the household.
Second, I went back to the dentist for him to fill cavities 2, 3, and 4 (of 8). I will try to make this short, but because of the level of trauma that I encountered in that office, I'm not making any promises of brevity. And if you have any fear at all of dentists then WARNING WARNING WARNING: DO NOT CONTINUE READING THIS UNLESS PSYCHOTHERAPY IS COVERED UNDER YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE POLICY.
Here is a rough recap of what happened ... (1) I was on time but they were not. (2) I was in line behind a medical student from a very prestigious local university. He was telling them all about how he only has tests twice a year. This was shocking, apparently. How would they know if he didn't study?!?! Goodness gracious! What if he didn't do anything all semester until test time and then crammed and then passed and then became a doctor? A doctor! (3) It was my turn finally and I got a shot in my lower left jaw. (4) A man in overalls came in for a denture adjustment, so I was left to "numb up" while the adjustment was made. They talked about the war (as in WWII). They talked about the dentist's son-in-law who is going to be on PBS next week in a documentary about mold inspection in the cargo holds of airplanes. They talked about killing fire ants with 3 tablespoons of that white powder stuff. You know, the worker ants feed it to the ole Queen and once she's gone, it's all over. (5) I am numb down to my waist and I start obsessing about how long the numbness will last. Is it powerful enough to outlast the denture adjustment? (6) It's my turn, finally, for the drill. But first the gas. However, this time, since I nearly vomited last time, I requested that they turn it down really low ... too low ... and when they started drilling, my brain somehow convinced me that I wasn't really numb. So I started kinda moaning and grabbing at the arm rests on the chair. And then he gave me another shot because darned if that stuff ain't supposed to work real good the first time and now my ankles are numb. More drilling. Is it my tooth that hurts? Or is it just in my head? Just breathe some more gas. The gas isn't working. IT HURTS. I jump. He jumps. The drill jumps. And then, (remember that warning ... I'm serious ... do NOT continue reading if you ever expect to go to the dentist again) due to the startled reactions of patient and doctor ...
The drill got lodged in my upper lip. The only part of my body that was not, at that point, completely numb beyond words. Now I am making that awful mewing sound that kittens make when they're hungry. And he is saying, "Oh no. Are you OK? Carolyn, go get some penicillin." And Carolyn is saying, "I think we better turn up the gas." And she does. And he extracts the drill from my lip and before I go into my nitrous-oxide induced haze, I manage to say -- through my sobbing -- "Fill 'em up. Fill 'em all up and get me outta here. I don't care what's wrong. Just fill 'em up; I'm leaving." And he did. And I did. Leave. As fast as a speeding bullet. Proceeded straight to my car and sat in that parking lot on 21st Avenue having the panic attack of a lifetime. Sick as a dog from two penicillin and nitrous oxide on an empty stomach. But not after I sat in that chair for a long time sobbing hysterically and thinking that life would never be the same. Came straight home to investigate the option of having sedation dentistry for the rest of my life.
A big fat lip. Another hundred and fifty dollars. Dentists are terrorists. Memo to the FBI: Abandon the search for Osama. Let's start with the home-grown guys. The ones whose tactics include such torturous atrocities as excessive waiting and upper-labial assault.
Third, the Friends of Radnor just purchased another huge block of land for the park, and so they had a celebration and ribbon cutting tonight. The land was near the observatory owned by the aforementioned prestigious local university (all of which is adjacent to the natural area), so the wine and cheese was served way up on the top of observatory hill. It was quite the event. Everybody was there. Even The Commissioner was there. You know. The Commissioner. THE Commissioner. And of course we were there. I in my bluejeans and Goose in his boots. Ah, The Goose. Our dearest Goose, who, during the commissioner's address to the party-goers, shouted, "Is all done! Yay! Go-go Mama. Let's eat. Amen." I could've crawled up under my chair if it hadn't been so hilarious that my violent snickering prevented me from removing him from the scene.
Later in the evening he grabbed a truffle off of the mayor's plate, scared a 3-year old by attaching himself to her pink jacket, grabbed Saturn out of the display case and yelled "A BIG BALL," and poured out an entire bottle of water on the beautiful starry rug underneath the big telescope. Luckily, almost everybody was a little bit tipsy from the wine and most of this went unnoticed. Somehow, I think that we must not get him out enough.
And that, people, is a synopsis of our week.