Holy crap. We’re three weeks into this mission already? Time flies when you’re having fun!
I’ve joked life is in 30 minute blocks when working from home while parenting alone. What I learned this week was there really is no substitute for having a couple of them strung into one long nap. Holy crap was that a godsend. You know what else was a godsend? Spicy snack food because there was no breakfast or lunch for several days so habanero almonds and buffalo-style pretzels where quick ways to just satiate cravings between coffee binges. Truth be told though I can’t wait to get back to a “normal” eating schedule.
Of course though, it’s not how I survive but what I learn with Padawan that makes the week so special:
Padawan knows when you’re trying to photograph, or worse, film something and that’s not good. I can’t begin to even try to tell you how many things I tried to capture for my wife and our families and friends that as soon as the camera or my phone came out were “done.” None the less, there’s one time that’s almost a guarentee of a great smile: the first tummy time of the morning. Damn. I’m gonna be sad when they outgrow the experience.
Helicopters! Seriously, spinning in circles is the new greatest thing ever. I know, every week there’s going to be a new one of these. That’s fine. This week it was helicopters and there’s a whole separate post for them.
They dig JRR Tolkien. The short of it is my wife has a nightly ritual before Padawan’s last feeding where he’s usually too awake to just “hang out with” so I have to find ways to entertain him. Although we have tonnes of children’s books I’ve always heard stories about people reading really complex stuff like Shakespeare to their little ones. That’s not my thing but I’ve been dying to revisit the original text for The Hobbit since the flicks came out and this is my opportunity especially since it’s simpler than Tolkien’s other works and I can get most of it aloud without butchering it too badly. Padawan seems to love it and the more reactions I get while reading the more animated the reading becomes.
They can entertain themselves and love the alone time. Sure, we do tummy time and standing time and the rest of our activities same as we have but it was really a turning point over the end of last week and through this week in witnessing how they play alone. I won’t say they don’t want interaction from me (they let me know exactly when it’s required) but there’s something really intriguing about not just the actions they are taking but the length of time they are now able to spend focusing on them alone. Brilliant being a passive witnness.
The little red chair is the new fun-time. Padawan’s latest addition to toys is a rubberized red chair that has a rattle set attached to it. They love sitting up and the chair allows them to get into a really comfortable position to not only sit up but interact with things. The week started with just sitting in the chair for a few minutes but we’re up to sometimes almost a half hour of spinning the rattle and grabbing at other things left on the attached table.
They know when I’m frustrated. I’ll be honest – there are lots of things that frustrate me during the day – most of it is technology related like when Chrome decides it needs to refresh all 50 open tabs in succession or when Verizon decides to throttle bandwidth because I have too many outgoing requests during a video presentation… Anyway, I lost my cool a couple of times this week and noticed a distinct difference in Padawan’s behavior the same way that when my wife looses her cool I can feel the tension in the air. It made me uber self conscious afterward. Fucking freaky how much they’re probably picking up.
Padawan digs some awesome orchestral music. I recently, finally, came upon Aaron Copeland which makes me very happy and it was a feature in our listening this week as were Tchaikovsky and Sibelius. There was nothing necessarily poignant about the reaction per se, but let’s just say barring correlation/=causation the best alone playtimes were the ones when one of those three composer’s music was playing. And, for good measure, no, Beethoven wasn’t good playtime music, so keep that cliche for some other kid 😉
So, for week three I’m pretty impressed with how much we’ve both learned and accomplished!