Sunday, January 30, 2011

Identity Crisis

On the eight minutes drive home from church today: (Try to keep up):

Daniel: "Mommy, I'm going to turn this van into a helicopter so we can fly."
Mommy: "Ok baby, that sounds fun."
Daniel: (Whooshing noise to turn van into helicopter.) "Ok Mommy. Will you be the pilot?"
Mommy: "Sure - I'll be the pilot."
Daniel: (Whooshing noise to turn Mommy into a pilot). "Ok Mommy, now you're the pilot. Pilot?"
Pilot: "Yes Daniel?"
Daniel: "Can we go super fast please?"
Pilot: "Sure, Daniel." (Makes super fast zooming noise.)
Daniel: "You know, pilot, we are going to the park later!"
Pilot: "That's cool, Daniel!"
Daniel: "And there are lots of... um, Pilot... can you turn into Mommy again for a minute?"
Pilot: "Sure."
Daniel: (Whooshing noise to turn pilot into Mommy). "Mommy, will there be animals at the park?"
Mommy: "Yes - some chickens and roosters, probably."
Daniel: "Ok can you be the pilot again?"
Mommy: "Sure."
Daniel: (Whooshing noise). "Hey pilot! there will be animals at the park Probably chickens and roosters!"
Pilot: "That sounds cool!"
Daniel: "Do you want to go with us to the park? Wait... um ... can you turn into Mommy again?"
Pilot: "Sure."
Daniel: (Whooshing noise to turn pilot into Mommy). "Mommy, can the pilot come with us to the park?"
Mommy: "Sure, Daniel."
Daniel: "Mommy, can you be the..."
Mommy: "Yes Daniel." (Whooshing noise to turn self into the Pilot). "I'm the pilot."
Daniel: "She says yes, pilot! Um, Mommy... can you just be Mommy again?"
Pilot/Mommy: "Yes! Gladly!"

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Sock Gnomes and Undies

So, Daniel is kind of a comfort-junkie. And a bit of an exhibitionist. Allow me to explain.

He complains almost every morning about having to take off his pajamas to get dressed. It's not so much about the getting dressed part, or even the going to school part. He hates taking off his warm, comfortable pajamas.

And the second we're back home: "Mommy, I don't want my pants. Just my undies." Lately, we've had to... coach... him on how this is NOT ok when we have company over. Just a few days ago, he excused himself from the dinner table to go to the bathroom (very politely, actually) and came back moments later sans pants. "Daniel, where did your pants go?!" "I dunno!!!" With lots of giggles of course. (You'll excuse
me for not posting a photo of this particular phenomenon.)

Last week I asked him about what he wanted to do/be when he got older and he said, "Mommy, I just want to be at home in my undies, on the couch." I guess that's ok since he's three. If he says the same thing at 18 we may have to have a chat.

We've been loving "How to Train Your Dragon" recently, and there is a hilarious line where the lead Viking is charging into a cave and says something like, "When I break through that rock, all hell's gonna break loose!" And his quirky little sidekick says, "In my undies!"

The kids don't understand why that's hilarious, but they know it's hilarious. It's kind of become our kid-friendly version of "That's What She Said". Daniel throws it into conversation randomly and laughs hysterically whether or not it makes sense. Violet just throws her head back and screams, "UNNNIIIEEESSS!" and laughs like an insane asylum patient.

And while we're talking about pants and undies, we might as well cover the topic of socks. Or should I say, "sock". Daniel is only ever wearing one sock. We put two on him every morning and within minute he is wearing one. For some reason, he just likes it better that way. Every time I ask about it, he just giggles and runs away. Either a strange little sock gnome keeps stealing my kid's sock, or my kid IS a strange little sock gnome!

Fun times in the world of Daniel's clothing!

Monday, January 10, 2011


Yesterday Daniel and I were sitting by the sliding glass door, hiding under the curtain. He offered me one of his blueberries. He put it in my mouth, held my mouth closed for a second and said very sincerely...

"Mommy, we close our mouth when we eat. We are not cows."

He then demonstrated the proper chewing technique for a non-cow.

It was all I could do to keep the blueberry IN my mouth at that point.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

The Perfect Start

Dear Daniel,

Last night the ball dropped yet again and we started a new year. You and your sister were sound asleep when it happened, but your father and I were in our PJs on the couch, toasting with Martinelli's and admiring Dic Clark's courage for continuing to appear on his annual special even in his weakened condition. (I know, I know... Just google him.)

Our crazy neighbors shot off fireworks in their backyard and partied for hours, and we spent the first few minutes of the new year talking about our dreams for this coming year (the word "Disneyland" may have been tossed around). We discussed our family goals, our plans, and how exciting a "blank slate" feels every year at this time. It's like God gift wraps his mercy once a year with a big shiny bow. It's there every day, but at the new year it's implications are palpable. You can taste the fresh start, and it tastes good.

Daniel, when you read this as an adult, I bet you'll laugh at how "long ago" 2011 was... but right now, those numbers seem like something out of a science fiction movie. I cannot believe 2010 is already over. It was our family's best year so far.

You and I spent the majority of January 1 outside, playing together. You begged me to play with you, and I set aside all the other things I "should have been doing" and just obliged you.

We were very, very busy. Here's the recap:

We played on the swings and in your imaginary airplane (you made me push all the colored buttons so that we could fly). We stopped by your imaginary friend's house (in our imaginary airplane) to see if he wanted to ride with us. We chased dragons. We tracked down Swiper the Fox when he stole the bag of fish you had to feed your dragon. We played chase. We ran in opposite circles, high-fiving each time we passed each other. We pretended to be koala bears (then spent ten minutes picking splinters out of your paws!) We took some silly photos with the iPhone and you particularly loved the "try to kick the camera while swinging" game. We rested in the sun, and took a break for hot chocolate and hot tea when we got too cold. (We sat on the patio couch together, and you made us take our sips in unison by saying, "Ok Mommy now we drink!") We played catch with footballs and that big yellow bouncy ball you love. We invented a game called "Goooo.... get 'em!" involving us throwing the footballs and making each other run for them.

We kept our shoes clean (even though it was muddy outside) because you still cannot stand to be dirty. (Your "dirty shoe walk" is absolutely hilarious, by the way. You look like a bow-legged little old man.) We hid in the "treehouse" from all the sleeping dragons that were waking up to come find us. (Can you tell we recently watched a dragon movie?) You had to go to the bathroom a few times and instead of the hassle of going inside, we found some rocks in a corner that needed watering. (You thought this was hilarious, and kept giggling about the time last month we couldn't get to a bathroom fast enough so we improvised with what was in the car: "Mommy, sometimes big boys go pee-pee into chocolate milk. But we don't drink that!)"). But when it was my turn to go to the bathroom and I headed inside (even I have my limits!), you insisted on coming with me, holding my hand, so that I would come right back outside with you. When Violet woke up from a long nap, you asked Daddy to go get her so that you and I could keep playing.

I spent those hours relishing our time together and admiring how much you've grown.

Your imagination is incredible - and your ability to story tell and weave together different story elements is impressive. I think you'll be a great writer someday.

Your physical ability has changed so much recently. Just watching the way you handle yourself on a swing - you are no longer a baby in any way. Your balance, your confidence, your agility... you have become so capable and comfortable in your own skin. (At one point you actually did 33 consecutive somersaults and lapped the grass area in our yard twice.) I think you'll be a great athlete one day.

Your conversation skills continue to blow me away. Talking with you is more than simply engaging a three year old - it's an actual two way street. You ask me questions and want to hear the answers. More than that, you remember my answers and care what I think. I know you'll be a good husband someday.

Thank you for the precious hours we spent together today - I couldn't imagine a better way to bring in the new year. Happy 2011!

Love, Mommy

P.S. I asked you if you will still want to hang out with me even when you get really big. You said "Yes!". Then I said, "Forever?" And you said, "Forever and ever!" And when I made you promise on everything good and holy that you were telling the truth, you giggled and said, "Yes, Mommy." So, there. I just wanted that documented somewhere in case I need it in the future.