who's the man now dog

March 28, 2011

Whew, what a weekend. We drove out to visit Biz and Dubs for a much needed break from our life/jobs/the lead here. Yes, I admit it readily, I needed a break. {And maybe I still do, for weekends with best friends never seem to last long enough. Sigh. Double sigh.} But we're home now and it's time to get back on the horse that is life; working, cleaning, blogging.

Every time we take the Jude to spend any time with Dubs his brain suddenly blooms bright in the night at shiny lightening speed. He loves older kids and stomps along behind him like a little puppy. He gets so inspired by all the fun things they do together. He wants to be big! Do what Dubs does! Say what he says! Play how he plays! After a weekend with his slightly older pal he ages months overnight. We were nearly home on our long long drive and he looked out the window and pointed, "What dat?" "What dat!" and pointed, "Dat!" I love the vocabulary explosion he has after every visit. The week after our visit he suddenly spouts out all kinds of new words. Seeing the two of them together makes me want to never leave. Well, that and the jokes. And the laughing. Those too.

I think this is my favorite age. –But then again I've said that about all the ages the Jude has been thus far. Every step towards speaking and learning and growing is just so much fun. I was never particularly into the whole mush-baby thing and the further we get from it the better things are. (Don't get me wrong, I loved smooshy baby Jude, but I'll be honest even with the random toddler anger-screaming this is WAY better.) I can't properly describe how amazing it is to see his mind work out problems and discover new things. In-fucking-credible. Jon and I are eager to start teaching him about things and he's finally nearing an age where he's ready to start absorbing it in a serious way. It's our parenting dream come to life! Teaching! Explaining! Laughing! I will eagerly trade in a baby for a sometimes angry toddler that I can actually explain stuff to. At times it's frustrating how far we still have to go but other days he's so responsive, so smart. We're getting there.

He {mostly} follows simple instructions now and it's a new glorious way of life. You can ask him to do things and there's a fair chance he might actually go do it! Amazing! (Better than Bang, anyway.) He'll help close the door, go sit in his seat when it's time to eat, carry his dishes to the sink when he's done, put things into the trash can, etc. I don't know where the dishes thing came from, it must be an Awesome Babysitter thing. One day he just grabbed his plate and headed into the kitchen to put it away completely out of nowhere. Maybe it takes my toddler to teach ME to finally do that right after I finish eating. We have the cleanest most dust-free house in the god damned state but I haven't given up my one vice of leaving dishes laying around. Poisonous lead dishes. Whapah! Zing!

Oh, the toddler life. The Jude now loves to ask, "Where'd it go!?" and then, "OH, 'dere it is!" when he loses a toy or leaves a man behind. First real sentence right there. Nope, not tired of it yet. It slays me every time.

He runs to his little bench at meal times and yells, "Sit sit!" and taps the chair with his finger, which is exactly what we do when he gets up halfway through his meal and tries escape to go play. "Sit sit, little buddy. Sit down." tap tap. Now every chair-like item must be declared a sit-sit. The highchair? A sit-sit. The stroller? A sit-sit. The toilet? It's a sit-sit. Tap tap.

His latest discovery has been birds and bugs. He points out his window and yells, "A BUUUUUU! (that's bird) A BUUUUU! HAI BUUUU!" Wave wave wave. Kid is jamming on some birds right now. He's always go an eye on the sky. And bugs too. Those stupid ladybug-like-bugs we get around our house are his best friends. If he spots one he shouts out, "A bee! A bee! Hai bee!" and tries to pet it, though in true Lennie Small fashion he smashes them quite to death with all the love that he has. It's a lot of love, a deadly kind of love. We call them his 'friends' and it's never occurred to him that they aren't a positively delightful discovery.

He will eat the universe. Anything. Everything. Nachos, calamari, olives, coleslaw, fruits, veggies, tacos, anything– in alarming quantities. He'll chase you around while you eat and say, "Bite? bite? bite?"

He thinks he's big stuff because he can go down the little slide by himself. If he's holding your hand he'll throw himself will wild abandon off the steps with all the faith in the world that you'll catch him when his short little legs don't reach the next step (hint: they never do). He has a lot of serious things to yell that no one can understand. Toy cows are for kisses. That bear is a puppy. Balls are for throwing and sharing. Chalk is for coloring. B is for hugging. Everything is "WHOOOOOA!" amazing and life, it is good.

Pictures on their way this week. Hold tight.
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