Saturday, April 19, 2008

Mommy, I want to stay home with you today.

Nine words that will make a mommy's heart melt every time. :)

Braeden said those words to me Thursday morning. He came in to my bedroom where Gage and I were nursing/sleeping and asked to stay with us instead of going to school. How could I say no? Mat was worried it would start some kind of precedent, but I don't care about that. All I care about is that my baby wanted to stay home with me instead of going to school to play with his friends.

So, Mat went off to work and Braeden snuggled under the covers with me while I finished nursing Gage. Then I turned on the TV in our bedroom so he could watch Curious George and Clifford while I showered and dried my hair. Gage came in with me; he sits in his carseat while I shower and do my hair. It's part of our routine. And I really think he likes it. He's never fussed while I'm in the shower. If he starts up, I just talk to him. But I think he likes the sound of the fan and the water. Plus it's warm and steamy in the bathroom which probably feels nice.

When I was finished, Braeden helped me eat my breakfast. That kid may look small, but he can sure put it away! I decided we should make granola. It's a good project for us, one we've done together before. Braeden likes being my helper. He tells me so on a pretty regular basis. We each made a little mess, but I cleaned them up pretty well.

After the granola had come out of the oven, we heard some commotion outside. I sent Braeden to look and he announced that there was a truck at our neighbor Bill's house. I assumed it was a FedEx truck, but when I looked I saw it was a dump truck delivering mulch. Since it was so sunny and warm out, we headed outside to watch the action. Bill and his girlfriend Megan want to be project people but they have very little follow-through. :) A year ago they drew outlines in their backyard for two large flower beds but never went any further than that. But now they're moving forward, so the dump truck was there to deliver mulch for their front beds and was going to make a second trip with topsoil for the new beds in the back. Braeden was THRILLED! We sat in the driveway and watched Bill work.

I think I've said this before, but we have terrific neighbors! They are all so sweet and patient with Braeden. We really lucked out.

After lunch, Braeden had quiet time upstairs and then we went to the park. He played in the sandbox for a long time. I don't mind him playing in the sand but I wished he had been the only kid in the box. One of the toughest parts of being a parent is watching your kid interact with someone else's kid. It's bad enough worrying your kid will be a bully or do something naughty. But what happens when the other kid is a brat?

On Thursday, Braeden behaved perfectly in the sandbox. Sitting on the edge of the sandbox with a bucket and shovel, he filled the bucket and told me it was cake. Cake for me. The other kids were flinging sand around, jumping into the sand from the edge, trying to knock each other down, and then trying to bury one of the bigger boys in the sand. Where were their parents? Well, there was a group of moms sitting under the shelter about 15-20 feet away. They had brought their own lounge chairs. They had coolers, magazines, and a radio. And they didn't seem at all interested in what their kids were doing in the sandbox leaving me as the only authority figure. And I'm wearing Gage in the Moby so I'm trying to stand back so he doesn't ingest sand or get it in his eyes. When their behavior got particularly bad or dangerous I had to step in and say something. And finally I told Braeden I thought he needed to play with something else until the bigger kids left the sandbox.

We moved on and Braeden climbed the rock wall, slid down the slides, and drove the ambulance. Plus he was in the shade more, so I felt much better! Still annoyed at the way those other moms and their kids behaved, but calmer because my kid wasn't at their mercy any longer.

This morning we took Braeden to the children's museum because there was a special Hot Wheels thing happening. Some people came in and set up a racetrack. The track looked like a ski jump...the kids climbed up three steps and placed their cars at the top. A man lifted a plexiglass panel and the cars rolled down the track towards the finish line. There was a digital thing set up to note which car came in first, second, third, or fourth place and a woman at the end who picked up the cars for the kids. And the best part? You could bring your own cars to race (which we did) but there was also a man who had a bunch of cars in boxes that the kids could pick from.

Braeden wasn't sure he wanted to play at first. He was hell-bent on playing with his usual stuff (the firetruck!) that he pitched a little fit. But on this occasion, I was more determined than he was. He perked up a little when he realized he could get a new car out of the deal. He picked out some kind of old Chevy station wagon which turned out to be a really, REALLY slow car. Not that Braeden cared! We did the first race together, but after that, Braeden was hooked. He would place his new car and one from home in the tracks and watch them start off. Then he would run down to the finish line dodging parents and other kids to get his cars again, then run back to the stairs to start over again. We had to make sure he took his turn nicely and didn't run into anyone, but he was very good.

I think he did 10 or 12 runs before he got bored and wanted to ride the firetruck. All in all, we were at the museum for a little more than an hour before making a quick (to me) trip to JoAnn's. They had patterns on sale for $.99! For less than a buck, I bought a pattern that regularly sells for $15.95! I saved almost $15! My fabric was on sale as was the batting, so all told, I spent just shy of $10. I'm going to tell you what I'm making, but I hope to be done soon and will post all the gory details on Gage's blog. While this isn't my first time using a store-bought pattern, it is the first time I've carefully read the entire set of instructions before beginning. It's also the first time I really understand the steps and the instructions. I feel pretty confident about this.

Famous last words!

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