Tag Archives: fall

Happy Autumn!

28 Oct

Dear Little Man,

It’s fall in the beautiful North Carolina mountains, and there’s probably nothing prettier than fall colors in the Blue Ridge. Autumn in WNC means a lot of things: crisp air, cooler temperatures, pumpkins, apple cider, scarves, leaf piles, cold noses, reds, oranges, yellows, browns, cuddles under the blankets and so many other wonderful things. Fall festivals  and country fairs are another autumnal hallmark, and we got to go to one a little over a week ago in Valle Crusis. You came down (or up, technically) with The B’s and we festival’d together near my lovely graduate school. You all slept over and we had a dance party in the A.M. (to One Republic only, per your request) then went for breakfast and a trip through Blowing Rock.

And I rented a camera and became a classic “Facebook mom” — taking hundreds of pictures and posting…like…all of them. Not ashamed. But you probably will be when I pull them out to show to your dates in another decade or so.

*insert evil Halloween-appropriate laugh here*

I love you, kiddo. I can’t wait to see you for trick-or-treating in a few days. You’re coming to my {Grandma M’s and Pop Pop 3’s} house in beautiful Asheville while your parents go to a concert and we get to walk through the neighborhood I trick-or-treated in when I was a kid. It feels very “circle of life” to me…maybe if we have time, you can dress up like Simba and I’ll paint myself purple, learn Swahili and paint shapes on your forehead. Hopefully that reference will make sense to you someday. The Lion King better not be that out of date by the time you’re old enough to read these…

Moral of the story, I am yet again thankful for the beauty of the true openness of our open adoption. Hopefully it’ll catch on so that other families get the extraordinary chance to have a relationship like we all have together.

I love you, to infinity and beyond.

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Our Miniature Mister Mischievous

3 Apr

According to J, you fell out of your crib this morning. Apparently you tried to climb out all by yourself instead of waiting for her to come get you. It didn’t end well – you may be ahead of your time, but you’re about as coordinated as every other two-year old. Which, of course, means not very coordinated. You fell pretty hard and cried.

Of course, in hearing about this, I think of your crib. And right now, in my mind, it’s hundreds of feet off the floor and it’s a minor miracle that you survived a fall of that magnitude. Welcome to the mind of a mother.

But after this, J makes a mention of a toddler bed. I’ll quote her directly, “I am so not ready for the toddler bed.” Now to be honest, I had to Google “toddler beds” because I had no idea what they were. I didn’t even know they were a type of bed until today. Basically they look like regular beds only a little smaller and with half railings along the sides. Actually, they look kind of cool, like a fort only in bed form. Sports Man has really cool bed similar to this – his actually has a tent over it. I sleep in it when I come to visit you. It’s totally cool.

Now J’s aversion to the toddler bed might be partially due to the fact that you can get out of it whenever you want to. While this sounds like a plus when compared to you trying to get out of your crib today, it also means that when you don’t feel like taking a nap, or when you wake up in the middle of the night and decide you’re bored, there is nothing keeping you in your bed or even in your room anymore. And considering your tendency towards the mischievous, freedom like that might be a little too much freedom. I love your independence, but I also don’t have to deal with you stealing Glad ware or climbing on counter tops (which, as much we’d rather you not do that, we still tend to find endearing).

But I think another reason J might not be ready for your toddler bed is because it officially makes you a toddler. And if you’re a toddler, then you’re no longer a baby. And if you’re no longer a baby then that means you’re growing up and I’m not sure if we’re okay with that. We love watching you learn and develop and change, but we also love the days when you weighed 7 lbs and we carried you everywhere. Sometimes it feels as though you were born yesterday, which would make your need for a toddler bed improbable. But I suppose if I have to choose from you falling out of your crib or being an official toddler, I’ll go with your toddler phase. But you see, one of themanyperks of being your mother is that I reserve the right to call you “my baby boy” forever. Which I will. Even when you’re in high school…and college…and when you get married…

Anyhow, I hope you’re feeling okay after your fall today. You’re as tough as they come, so I’m sure you’ve made a full recovery, unlike J who is probably still picturing you crying on the floor. Another point I’d like to make: I really, really love J. She’s the wonderful, beautiful sister I’ve never had and always wanted. And as much as I love your crazy independence (which you totally get from me), I love her just as much. So if your could maybe not give her a premature heart attack, I would really appreciate it :)

Big Shoes, Grocery Carts and Other Things You Shouldn’t Play With

16 Feb

For your first birthday, you got a lot of presents. I got you a little baby “walker” of sorts – you had just started learning how to walk, but you couldn’t do it alone yet. You had found a solution for that problem, though: you had a thing for pushing The B’s dining room chairs around the house, so I figured I could buy you a toy that would be a lot easier to push and would have fewer damaging effects on their hardwood floor. You took to it pretty well – after falling down a couple of times and realizing that you didn’t have to push on it with quite as much effort as you pushed on the chairs, you became a regular pro with your toy walker.

 Two days later, at your birthday party, you got another similar toy. It was a miniature grocery cart – technically it wasn’t a baby walker, but it had wheels and that’s all that mattered to you. Towards the end of your party, when we were gathering up all of your goodies, you decided you wanted to walk around and since the grocery cart was the only thing with wheels, you decided it would be you “walking aid.”

 Unfortunately, you had to push the grocery cart with even less effort than you had to push the toy I got you. And since the mini grocery cart wasn’t actually built to be a learn-to-walk tool, your idea of walking around with it backfired. You pushed down on it a little hard (since that’s how you did it with your other toys) and the part you were pushing on went down and the front end of the cart went up. The front end whacked you in face just before you went down to the floor with the back-end of the cart that you were pushing on. When you rolled over, I saw that you were bleeding from where your mouth had been hit.

 I was horrified. If there was one arena in which I failed as a parent that day, it was keeping my calm and comforting you. Because, of course, you immediately burst into tears…and so did I. Being surrounded by people as I was, I held it in pretty well, but I have felt so hurt in my entire life. I picked you up and held you and hugged you and eventually handed you over to J  when none of that worked. Eventually she got you calmed down and you were happy as a clam on the way home, but I will never, ever forget that.

 Apparently, I had a similar experience when I was younger. Pop-pop 3 would always tell me about the day when I was three or four, and I decided I was literally going to walk around in my mother’s (Grandma M’s) shoes. Of course, they were too big and I tripped…right into the corner of a bench on our porch. I still have the scar on my cheek. Pop-pop 3 said it was like watching slow motion – he could see it all happening, but no super human powers could get him there fast enough to stop it. He always relayed this story to me with incredible intensity, and I never understood what the big deal was, especially since I had come through it just fine.

 I finally understood after your incident with the cart. It hurt me more to see you hurt than any physical pain has ever caused me. Even though you turned out just fine mere minutes later, I think I’m scarred for life. I would have given anything to spare you those few minutes of pain. And nothing is sadder than you when you cry. You stick your little bottom lip out and your eyes get all red and you bury your face in the nearest person’s shoulder…it’s making me feel sad to think about.

 Witnessing your child get hurt results in the strongest empathy I think I’ve ever felt.

 Therefore, you are not allowed to: fall down, break any bones, play any sport that could result in injury, use kitchen knives, be within a foot of any outlet, drive, burn yourself, handle any hot food or beverages that could burn you, eat anything that could choke you, play with anything that has claws or sharp teeth, swim in bodies of water deeper than a few inches, wear scarves (Google Isadora Duncan), or go anywhere without wearing a helmet and knee/elbow pads.

 I’m glad we had this talk. I can’t wait to see you this weekend! We’re going to have so much fun sitting in the middle of an empty room, devoid of any objects that could possibly result in you being hurt.

 Just kidding.

 But just know that every time you get hurt, I get hurt with you. I guess it comes with the territory of being absolutely, completely in love with you. I promise to get better at not losing my head anytime I see you fall or otherwise injure yourself. It’s a tough promise to make, but in the spirit of letting you figure the world out for yourself, it’s one I’ll try to keep.

 But while I try to do that, maybe you could lay low on the cart pushing, and stick to wearing your own shoes.

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