Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Letter to My Boys

Gavin,
In the last month, it seems that your legs have doubled in length.  You've always been such a stocky kid that hearing someone refer to you as "lanky" the other day took me by surprise.  But when I took a good look at Daddy holding you up for a hug the other day, I realized it's true.  I blinked and you changed from chubby to stocky to lanky.  Your toddler look is all gone now, completely replaced by "little boy."  Words you used to pronounce incorrectly are slowly decreasing in number.  "Nanna" has become banana and "pewter" computer.  I'm hoping to catch the way you say Quik Trip on video before that changes, too.  I know the adorable "twip tip" won't last much longer.

What has resurfaced recently is calling me "Momma" instead of "Mommy."  I have a feeling it's due to your brother's birth and it's a regression I selfishly hope lasts for a while longer.

You've recently learned that the word "may" is a polite word and you use it often when we prompt you with "How do you ask politely?"  My favorite is when you use it incorrectly though, trying so hard on your own to be polite.  Just this morning you said, "May you open the fridge please, Momma?"  It really takes the cuteness of being polite over the edge.

I've also noticed just how innately "boy" you are recently.  Though we've never allowed you to play with toy guns or other toy weapons, sticks instinctively become swords and a sandwich with bites taken out of it is imagined to be a "gunner."  You want to "shoot the bad guys" and "lock them in a cage/jail" no matter how many times we say "guns are not toys" and "we don't shoot people."  I think it's just something I'll have to get used to as the mother of boys.  It's probably good that Daddy hunts so you'll learn to respect weapons instead of only seeing them on TV and movies.

I have so enjoyed the extra time I'm getting with you this summer.  I know I'll never get this opportunity again so I'm filling up on all the extra snuggles, hugs, kisses and chasing games now.  Though some days I wonder how the hell stay-at-home moms do it, "Momma, will you play with me?" is my favorite phrase of yours right now and I'm trying my hardest to answer "yes" every time you ask.

I can't wait to see what you're up to next, buddy.

I love you more,
Momma (formerly known as Mommy)
Checking out the Dino exhibit at Crown Center.




Bennett,
You, my little man, are so, so fun.  You're such a happy baby.  Giggly, bouncy, smiley...all of those describe you perfectly.  Though you do still have the occasional fussy day, your general mood is happy unless you're hungry or tired.  Before we left for vacation, you'd slept straight through the night (8-5-ish) four nights in a row.  Vacation ruined your streak of course, but I'm hoping you'll return to those blissful nights soon.  You only wake up once right now so I really shouldn't complain, but man was it awesome to get a full night's sleep that many days in a row!

We got your first real giggle on vacation.  Gavin and I were being silly in the car and you thought we were hilarious.  We've had a couple more since then but you're pretty stingy with your laughs so far.  I have discovered tickling you brings them out so I plan to torture you with tickles often.  I apologize in advance.

We can no longer trust you in a bouncy chair or swing without strapping you in.  You try to sit up every time you're in a reclined position and you're getting pretty good at it.  You're so strong for your age that people are often surprised when I tell them you're only three months old.  Your size might have a little something to do with that, too.  :)

Though "Doc" is still a nickname we use for you, "Mr. Bennett" and "Benny Boo" have surpassed it in usage.  It's especially adorable to hear your brother call you "Benny Boo" in his most soothing, sing-song voice when you're upset.

I think I'll have to give in and get your hair cut soon.  Your baby mullet is getting obscenely long and because you've lost some in the middle, the hair on the top of your head makes you look a bit Donald Trump-ish.  Plus, Grandma Clifford is itching to get her scissors out.

You're still quite the talker, cooing and babbling and "ah-oooing" constantly.  You're quite the conversationalist, it's just going to take us a few months to understand what you're going on about.

Every day I find something new to love about you.  I am so very glad I decided to spend this extra time with you on maternity leave.

I love you more,
Momma
Sporting your "Baby Doc" shirt and cooing at the animal friends on your swing.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

June Gavinisms

After a particularly filling dinner one night:
Ryan:  "Did you get enough?"
Gavin:  "I'm full from my penis all the way up to my head."

His first impression of a common saying:
Me:  "The grass is always greener."
Gavin:  "Yep.  And apples are always rusty."

After seeing some sharks in the aquarium on vacation:
Gavin:  "I'm a shark.  I'm gonna eat you up."
Me:  "Well then who will take care of you and Bennett?"
Gavin:  "We be right fine.  I take care of Benny.  I a big boy."

After bath time:
Me:  "Bennett's hair is curly after he takes a bath."
Gavin:  "Fix it, Mommy."

After invading my space and walking in on me peeing:
Gavin:  "Why you sit down to potty?"
Me:  "Because girls sit down.  Boys stand up."
Gavin:  "Why?"
Me:  "Because boys have penises, so they get to stand up.  Girls don't.  We're different."
Gavin:  "I have a penis.  And Daddy has a penis.  I wish you could have a penis like us."
Me:  "I sure don't."
Ryan:  "Me neither."

Looking at Bennett while he took a nap:
Gavin:  "Bennett's eyes are cracking, Mommy."
Me:  "Oh, sweetie...those are just his veins in his eyelids."






Monday, June 25, 2012

First Family Vacation Learnings

1.  This self-proclaimed "air travel snob" is capable of traveling by car.
2.  Emergency room visits should be made in the smallest town possible.  No waiting!
3.  Mosquitos are minions of the devil.
4.  The ocean is scary when you're three.
5.  Naps are essential.
6.  Naps on the beach are even better.
7.  Breastfeeding on the beach is a little gritty.
8.  Sand and chubby baby crevices don't mix.
9.  Ryan is the king of sand castle building.
10.  Packing, unpacking, and driving suck.  But watching your kid's face light up when he sees the ocean for the first time makes it all worth it.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The End

Abner,
I've tried and failed to write this post multiple times now.  I'm just not quite sure how to say goodbye to you, though I've known it's been coming for far too long now.  As I write, I watch you hobble around the house--mostly blind, deaf, confused and barely able to walk.  It's been such a slow progression that I've been in denial about how bad you've deteriorated over the last year.  I've just been angry.  Angry at the constant messes we've had to clean up, angry that you started biting (both us and Gavin), angry that you won't give in to death on your own...just...angry.

But then I ran across some old photos of you this week--the happy, playful, youthful you that plopped into our lives eight years ago and the anger is gone, replaced by an overwhelming sadness that this really is the end.  You're so far gone that there's just a shell of you left now.  The light that filled your eyes in those pictures is gone and has been for some time.  It just took me a while to accept it.

Though you've always been our "old man dog,"  I don't want to remember you that way.  It's the silly, frisky, unconditionally lovable stories that I want to come to mind when I think of you.  Like the story of how we "dogsat" you over a weekend and I ended up falling so in love with you that I couldn't bear to let you go.  Or the many, MANY nights one of us (mostly Ryan) slept with you on the floor because you were so afraid of thunderstorms that you ripped the house apart in fear.  Or the dozens of times somebody asked us what breed you were and we said, "we're not sure" (we never did figure that one out).  Or how you became a "guard dog" when Gavin was born, constantly laying next to him.  The trips to DQ because you loved ice cream, the tricks you so excellently performed, the way you kept Daisy on the sidewalk during walks, the cuddles, the kisses, your scaredy-cat howl, and a thousand more little things I love about you.

So today, when we take you to the vet and say goodbye...it's those things I'm going to remember.  Thanks for bringing our family so much joy.  My favorite, my bub, my silly old man...I'll miss you.
Very excited for Christmas treats at the old house!

Best buds--Daisy and Abner looking out the front door of the old house.

So playful.  He loved it when his toy would get stuck under the counter.

Cuddles!

All worn out from playing too hard.

Cuddled up on the couch.

Transforming into the guard dog once Gavin arrived.

Hiding out (or looking for scraps) under Gavin's high chair.

Our "old man" in his old age.
Abner
2004-2012