Hello my friends and welcome, welcome to the show that never ends (except on the four days a week I don’t write a blog post).
I’m sure, like me, you’re still buzzing over the fabulous National Spelling Bee last night on ESPN; I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, it’s the most consistently awesome annual event on TV (as usual the kid I thought would win, Jashun, didn’t. I stink at Bee predictions.)
So while I fly to Oakland to give the Cavaliers’ J.R. Smith lessons on scoreboard-reading, I was thinking I hadn’t done a “Daddy Chronicles” in a long time and it turns out it’s been like four months since the last one. Unacceptable, especially since these kids change every day.
I deeply apologize, and will make up for it today. Herewith, life with two boys and a patient wife who will no doubt be sainted one day:
— OK, so first I’ll start with the “new guy,” or L.B., as we sometimes call Theo. (For Little Boy.) Let’s just say he and milk have a wonderful relationship: It appears, and he drinks it down like Kobayashi ingesting hot dogs at that stupid contest every July 4. My little guy has gotten huge, like 18 pounds at 6 months of age huge. I’m pretty sure he’ll be bigger than me by next Tuesday.
We’ve started solid foods in the past few weeks, and he’s a big fan of those as well. He actually starts to cry when you remove the spoon of carrots or peas from his mouth while reaching down to get more. He believes, I think, that there should be a funnel system ensuring he’s constantly getting the food.
He’s still the same happy, smiling baby, except when we take that spoon or bottle away. Oh, and he only poops every three days or so (Doctor says it’s normal.)
— He’s starting to scoot a little bit now, and he’s been rolling over for weeks. He’s also swatting at stuff, including his big brother when Nate happens to be near him (which is almost always). “He’s hitting me!” Nate will cry out.
“Nate, he doesn’t know he’s hitting you, you’re on top of him and he’s just flailing his arms.”
My argument is unconvincing to the big brother.
— Last thing about Theo: He has decided he’s a power-napper. His brother used to take delightful, 1.5-2 hour naps in the morning and afternoon at this age. Theo? Not so much. No matter the conditions, whether in stroller, crib or swing, he goes 40-45 minutes, then he’s up. So he takes 3-4 little naps throughout the day. Great for him, not so great for Daddy.
— So, Nate. The three-nager stage has definitely hit us. He’s still an amazing, smart, caring child (more on that in a minute) but the tantrums have certainly increased the last few months. Part of that is probably anxiety over our impending move to the new house, part of it is sharing our attention with his brother, and part of it is him just being 3.
But wow, we get 2-3 tantrums most days. About incredibly important things, like not getting to help me pump gas at the gas station, or not getting the snack he wanted.
Delightfully, when the tantrums come in the car, his legs are now long enough where he can kick the back of my seat while I’m driving, which makes me insane and puts me in a rage. We keep telling ourselves “this too, shall pass.”
— His heart is still so big, though. He’s always sharing his extra straw or napkin with other kids at school who don’t have one. The other night on the way home from visiting the new house, Shelley and I were talking about what to do for dinner. We asked him what he wanted.
“Whatever you guys want to have is fine with me,” he said.
I know he’s just repeating what he’s heard us say to each other. But still, come on! What 3-year-old says that?
— Nate has also ever so slightly started to get into sports (I have no idea how that happened :). One time during college basketball season he asked why some men on the court were wearing black and white stripes. I explained that those are the referees who make sure the players play by the rules.
For weeks afterwards when there was a game on, it was an excited cry of “Daddy! I just saw one of the referees! And there’s another one!”
— Finally, had a wonderful Dad moment last week, when we went to the new house (we move in a few weeks) and he got to see his new bedroom furniture. His own room, a big new bed, a swingset in the backyard… yeah he’ll miss NYC, but how his face lit up when he saw it … so great.
Now maybe he’ll get a job and help pay for it all.