and they all, gloriously, did not happen.
I’m a big planner. So, when Duhdee and I decided that we’d drop Monkey off with my parents for the weekend so we could celebrate our anniversery I immediately began planning. We’d get up early, go on a whale watch and have dinner. OR! We’d get up early, go to some nifty little coastal town and play tourist all day and have dinner. OR! We’d sleep in, walk around the city, have dinner and see a movie.
What did we do? We walked to the bakery and bought a loaf of fresh sourdough. We walked to the neighborhood hardware store and looked for a canner*. We picked tomotoes and basil from the garden and made Caprese paninis for lunch. We spent some quality time with Google researching which type of canner we need. We went to the grocer and bought steak for the grill, chocolate cake for dessert and then we stopped to rent two movies. We came home, ate 1/2 the cake and watched Cloverfield (eh, not that scary!) We grilled potatoes, corn and the steak for a candlelight dinner. We watched I Am Legend (oh, holy heck!!!) We watched the last few Olympic swimming races and ate popcorn. It was the most relaxing, quiet day. We moved at our own pace and did just what we wanted. We didn’t have to worry about snacks or timing meals so Monkey wouldn’t have a fit. There was no one to tell us “No! No! No!” when we wanted to hold hands, lol.
Monkey had a great time too. He did really well with my parents. He spent a lot of time hanging out with Grampa. He played in the sprinkler and went on walks with Auntie. He visited Papa (his great grandfather who lives next door to my parents) and his Great Aunt (who lives just a little bit further down the street.) His 14 year old 2nd cousin spent most of Saturday with him and he just loves her…the 24 grams of sugar she fed him in the 6 oz KoolAid drink helped *faint* I guess I should have mentioned that sugaring up Monkey is not a great idea…he wore everyone out before he passed out for the night.
Yesterday, after we moved our strawberry plants from their pot to their new location near the house, we went to pick him up. We hung out with my family, ate dinner and then went to the beach for an hour. Monkey had such a good time and it was so nice to see how relaxed and happy he was. There were no tears until we left the beach which is totally understandable…I didn’t really want to leave either. Ahhhh…I wonder when Grammy and Grampa will be ready for another weekend? HA!
*We found one, no thanks to the teenyboppers working at the store who offered up a TRASHCAN and seem perplexed when I declined and began describing what I was looking for in detail.
It’s 10 AM on a Sunday and I have no idea what Monkey is up to. In fact, I have no idea what he’s been up to in days. Hopefully he’s enjoyed himself as much as Duhdee and I. We’ll find out when we pick him up later this afternoon.
Grammy, Grampa and Auntie are all probably dying for a nap right about now so I should probably feel a little bit guilty, right? Yeah, not so much 🙂
We’ve been working on teaching Monkey the letters in his name and how they go together. I recalled that I had these letters that I’d bought ages but never hung up anywhere. I pulled them out and he’s TOTALLY got this down now.
He knows each letter and will hand it to me upon request and as soon as he hands a letter to me he will clap for himself and say “Waaayyyy! Waaaaayyyyy!” (Monkey-speak for “Yayyyy!” lol) I put them together so it spells his name. Yesterday morning he handed me the next letter a couple times without my asking for it so he’s clearly remembering the order a bit too. I’m so excited!
I really wanted him to know this before he goes back to school. I want the school to really step up to the plate when it comes to setting new goals for this year and I think they will be impressed by this, I know I am!
So, back in the day (pre-Monkey, pre-Duhdee for that matter), I used to run. I loved running, I’d run 4 miles every morning before setting out on the rest of my day. It cleared my head, reduced stress…it made me feel strong and healthy. Then I stopped.
Duhdee and I moved in together and my commute doubled. Suddenly there seemed to be no time for a run. Then along came Monkey and time was in even shorter supply. More than that though I no longer felt strong enough to run for any distance. I was tired, I was out of shape, I was unmotivated. I kept saying I needed to start again but I never did.
Last week a co-worker mentioned that she and another co-worker were in a “friendly” competition to loose weight by December. She was going to start running to help the process along. I was shocked when my mouth opened and I said “Oh, OK. Do you want to run together after work sometimes?” and she had the freaking nerve to say “Sure!” What have I done?!
So, on Monday, during our lunch break we went to Marathon Sports and had gait analysis done and then we each bought a new pair of running shoes. In a fit of madness motivation I suggested to Duhdee that he join me in a training program called “Couch to 5K” in preparation for a 5K that my firm participates in each year. Once he agreed I mentioned it to my co-worker. She’s reluctantly on board as well. What have I done?!
This morning another co-worker (the one who is also involved in the weight loss competition) was informed of our plan to run in a 5K next spring and she suggested we run in one this fall as soon as we finish our 9 week training program. No reason to wait, she said. Right! So. We now have 3 5Ks up for debate starting 10 weeks from now! I found the Fragile X 5K Road Race/Walk and I want to do that one. I don’t think my co-worker will want to do that race so it now appears that Duhdee and I will be running in 2 of the 3 5Ks. What have I done?!
Duhdee and I went on our first training run last night. It was not fun and though that program looks easy, it’s much harder than I thought. Tonight is training run #2 with my co-worker and I have shin splints from yesterday’s session. This should be torture fun!
Can I just ask one more time, what have I done?!
Yesterday, an hour before dinner, Monkey brought me a yogurt and a spoon from the kitchen. This was his not so subtle hint that he wanted a snack. Since he’d already had a snack and we were only an hour from dinner I told him “No, put that away.”
Monkey wandered off toward the kitchen and I heard the refrigerator door open and then close. Imagine my surprise when he came back a few moments later with a yogurt and a spoon. “No! It’s almost time for dinner. Put that away!”
Once again Monkey wandered off toward the kitchen. I heard the refrigerator door open and then close again. Then I heard Duhdee say “Monkey, put that away, it’s almost dinner time.” Duhdee then came out to the living room shaking his head to tell me that although I probably thought Monkey had been ignoring me, he hadn’t.
When I told him to put the yogurt away, he did. The yogurt he brought back was a different yogurt, lol. When I told him to put that one away he went back to the kitchen and was trading it for a third flavor. Apparently he thought I was just rejecting that particular yogurt in his hand, not the idea of a yogurt, lol.
I do have to admire his persistance and his creativity.
Monkey achieved a milestone this morning. Remember this post where I bemoaned the fact that Monkey is not independent? I speculated that his double dose of the lazy gene was holding him back? This morning Monkey did something so very normal and brought tears to my eyes. Again.
We’re getting ready to take our power walk. We ate breakfast and I got Monkey cleaned up. Then I picked out clothes for him to wear. Monkey was sitting on his changing pad on his dresser (yes, still using the changing pad even though he’s twice as long as it is, lol) and he was watching me pick through his clothes. I pulled out a pair of warm up pants and was looking at t-shirts when he started telling me “No, no, no!” and signing “open” and pointing. I got him down and he immediately closed the shirt drawer and opened the drawer with his pants. He picked through his options and chose a pair of silky basketball shorts. Woah! I helped him put them on and then went back to choosing a t-shirt. Nope, no go. Monkey wanted to pick his own. He considered the ones I suggested and rejected them all. He finally settled on one and happily put it on.
Duhdee came in and looked at our decidely mismatched child and I had to point out that Monkey had picked his own clothes. He thought I’d dress him like that?!? Men! I walked from the room with tears in my eyes…tears of pride of his new found desire for independence and tears of sadness…my baby is growing up.
In mismatched clothes.
For a very long time we’ve wished that Monkey could tell us what he wants to eat. We can offer items at home and he will reject them one after the other until we either give up or figure out what he wants. In restaurants we just have to guess and hope he’ll eat what we order.
Recently Monkey has started using an alternate method of communicating with us and it’s pretty effective! One afternoon, at snack time, Monkey brought Duhdee the peanut butter, a paper plate and a loaf of bread. Woo hoo! Snack = peanut butter sandwhich, done.
Not all of our food items are available in this manner though. There are still a couple of shelves in the pantry that he can’t reach and he can’t reach the freezer either. This has limited his choices a bit but yesterday he was able to figure out a way to use what he could reach to ask for what he couldn’t. He brought Duhdee two items and the two items planned our entire dinner.
He brought Duhdee the ketchup and the honey mustard. 🙂 We had homemade fries and chicken nuggets and Monkey ate every bite on his plate and then asked for more. What a cutie.
So, given the fact that Monkey is now finally figuring out ways to communicate with us regarding what he wants to eat, you’d think Duhdee would be happy. Nope. He was put out (mildly) because he wasn’t feeling well and he was hoping for something less labor intensive for dinner. Poor guy, lol.
Monkey and I have been reading Dr. Suess’s ABC at bedtime for the last couple of weeks and my boy is really soaking it up.
He knows that “H” comes after “G” and he loves “H” so he starts giggling before I’ve turned the page. He tells me that “I” comes after “H” and that “T” comes after “S”. Last night, he told me “Wee” when I turned the page to “V.” He was very serious about this and took the book from my hands so he could point at the letter “V” while telling me “Wee” repeatedly. I guess he wanted to be sure I was following along.
After we finished reading the rest of the book he opened the inside back cover, which has all of the letters on it, and he located the “V.” Once again looked at me, pointed and told me “Wee.” So, I guess there is no doubt he knows “V” now we just need to work on the other 25 letters 🙂
So many speech and learning activity suggestions for kids seem to focus on ryhmes and songs. Monkey is not a big fan of songs though. He will tolerate my “singing” to some extent but it’s never been his favorite activity. I’ve noticed that songs on typical pre-school programs (like Backyardigans) seem to trigger him. He loved the show for a very long time but he began running from the room whenever they sang (which is a lot) and then he decided he didn’t want to watch the show at all anymore. In his classroom, the singing and movement activities really upset him and he would have meltdowns. Gradually, he stopped doing that but he will not participate, he will grudgingly stay within sight of the kids as they sing and/or dance but that is it.
It’s not all songs that bother him though. He listens to music at bedtime each night. He listens to music in the car (grownup music, we own a few lullaby CDs but that’s it…he listens to what we listen to.) Last night he had trouble falling asleep and eventually ended up crying. I let him get up to calm down and he sat on my lap while we watched this, not your typical toddler music. I was familiar with some of the songs b/c my parents listend to them when I was growing up. He was fascinated and relaxed in my lap.
I wonder if this is something I should try to “fix.” I don’t particularly see anything wrong with it but I know it would make his pre-school teacher happy if she could do movement activities with her class without having Monkey protest. There is no guaruntee that anything I do at home will help in the slightest bit because there are, quite simply, different rules and allowances for Umma (even Duhdee doesn’t get cut quite as much slack as I do, lol.)
Are there any 4 year old appropriate CDs that your kids like(d) that won’t make my ears bleed? I’m resigned to the fact that whatever CD we pick we will be bombarded by ear worms (I’ve been singing “Baby Beluga” for 5 days now, ugh)…I’d just like them to be slightly pleasant for a grownup to listen to. I’ve heard They Might Be Giants have a couple good CDs, I’m not sure who else is good though. Bonus points for any songs that are standard pre-school fare. I’m definitely deficient in this area since my parents didn’t play “kid” music for us as we grew up either, I don’t even know what I missed!