Saturday, December 22, 2012
Ben went lame earlier this week, cause unknown. Probably a minor injury that stiffened up overnight, but on Monday morning Ben couldn’t walk and was also acting very sick. Tuesday he had a 106 fever (in the danger zone for dogs). Apparently, he also had an obstruction in his small intestine… and tumors all over his x-ray… and arthritis so massive in his hips that the vet was impressed he had been able to walk at all before the injury. With antibiotics and pain meds, we kept him comfortable this week, hoping he would rebound, but instead his leg got more and more swollen, and he started developing a sore lying the only way he could lie without being in too much pain. The picture is of Ben this week surrounded by pictures Tucker drew for him to cheer him up. Half the pictures are portraits of Ben, and half the pictures are pictures of food.
This morning, my yellow man, my first baby, went to go meet his first master, my Uncle Brian who passed on in 2004. It is sad to come home to an empty house, sad not to have to hide the laundry up high so Ben won’t eat any socks. But I’m happy that he’s out of pain, and happy that this world is not all there is.
I will remember you, Benny:
…lying next to me on the couch, snuggled in close.
….driving with you in the passenger seat, your paw on my arm just so I wouldn’t forget that the primary purpose of cars is petting.
…for the softest ears I’ve ever felt.
…for snoring so loudly that you’ve made whole groups of people laugh in our living room.
…for being the best kitchen floor cleaner I could ever wish for.
…for your world-record setting eating pace.
…as mad dog chasing a stick around in a circle.
…as the slowest (but enthusiastic) running companion ever. I always knew you were built for love, not for speed.
…for the total lack of grace you had swimming even though you loved it. It took me a long time to stop worrying that you would drown with all the water you ingested.
…and for so much more.
I will miss you, my boy.
Friday, November 9, 2012
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Molly June Bug is 2 years old. My baby is definitely a rambunctious toddler (though she was a rambunctious infant, so it’s really not a huge change). She seems younger to me than Tucker did at that age--she is so much smaller than he was at her age (she is the size he was at a year), and her hair is not long enough for a real hair cut yet (whereas Tucker was getting haircuts by 6 months old)! This is fine with me; I can’t believe my baby is 2.
Molly has been a daddy’s girl for most of her short life, but the past month or so I’ve become the favorite most of the time. She loves to be held, though this is moderating… a little. She still would prefer to be in our arms if we are doing anything in the kitchen, or are out in the big wide world.
She has mellowed since she started walking and is not quite as adventurous as she was at first. I think this is a good thing. She still goes down slides head first and climbs all sorts of things… but I don’t worry so much that she will find some playground cliff and jump off anymore. She can still be fierce, though, and usually is the one who is stealing the toys in our house.
Molly has a smile that lights up her face, if not the room, and a laugh that is just about the best music I’ve ever heard. She also loves to shriek—in happiness and in sadness—but I definitely prefer her laugh. She likes to take both of her hands and thump us on our chests when she’s happy. She also tries to stuff her lovey into our mouths, wanting to share her special love of sucking her bunny. Bunny is always, always gross given the amount of time it spends in her mouth… even though there are three bunnies in rotation so that each one can go in the wash every few days.
Molly loves anything that moves, especially swings and strollers and backpacks. She demands to be pushed so high on the swing that the rope is practically parallel to the ground. Molly is also in love with Elmo, and the little books that you can lift the flaps on. She loves finding the mouse on each page of Goodnight Moon. She is also very adept at doing puzzles and has been doing them successfully for a long time.
Her focus and determination are definitely remarkable. She will get it in her mind that she wants to do something—like put her crocs on standing up, without using her hands—and she will work endlessly till she gets it done. This can be frustrating for us, depending on how frustrated she gets, and if we actually need to go somewhere or do something. Her determination also can be amazing, like her potty training in August at 21 months… and not having a single accident for the first month! She is not a toddler that is easy to distract, has very definite opinions and very limited ways of expressing herself; discipline is a challenge.
It is impossible to keep clothes on her that she doesn’t like. She can almost completely dress and undress herself given enough time. She has so many clothes that she never wears and about three favorite outfits (often involving polka dots) that she wears all the time.
If I had to pick one word to describe Molly, I’d pick spunky. She lives with intensity. She is a handful but also a delight. Happy birthday, my girl! I hope you always keep your spirit, and I’m excited to see where it takes you.
Friday, September 28, 2012
Molly’s fashion sense often involves a bathing suit. And lots of stickers. Sometimes it requires two ties, especially if she wants to dress up really pretty for church.
She is very adept at getting herself clothed and unclothed (she prefers unclothed) and because of this, it’s very difficult to keep clothes on her that she doesn’t want to wear. This means she wears a small segment of her clothes all the time.
Yesterday she left the house wearing SIX pairs of underwear. She still doesn’t like doing some of her business in the potty so at one point yesterday she was wearing a diaper AND six pairs of underwear. Remarkable.
If I had to describe Tucker right now I would say he is very enthusiastic and positive and also sensitive. He has really grown in his confidence, and loves to talk to adults now which is a very new development. His stories crack me up, because he sometimes takes very circuitous ways of saying things. He loves being one of the oldest kids in his preschool, and he is an amazing big brother. We are having to teach him to protect himself and his toys from Molly just coming and taking them because he almost always just lets her have her way!
Tucker is developing new interests, especially in sports. He loves running. He wears workout shorts and no shirt to be like his daddy and often spends the afternoons helping Austin with his workouts, especially if they involve sprinting. He has a Redskins helmet and we play tackle in the yard. He recently started on a soccer team, and so soccer has now joined the fray as well. For his birthday I ordered trophies from Amazon and conducted the Birthday Olympics so everyone could compete to their heart's content. Tucker loved his trophy, and loved the competitions... but he struggles with losing (unsurprisingly).
His other favorite activity is listening to books on CD during rest time, and has been ripping through Roald Dahl books especially. His favorite is the BFG, but Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach were also hits. In an interesting development, he has also started playing with trucks again. I had put most of our matchbox cars in the attic as well as some of his large trucks, because he had completely lost interest in them. Well, the interest is back, and it's like a throwback to when he was two.
This year on his birthday I let him start chewing gum. He loves telling me all the things that he can do now: reaching the faucet, chewing gum, making toast, cutting cheese, I think I hear a new thing every day.
Happy Belated Birthday, Tucker!
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Me: Do you know the Ten Commandments?
Tucker: I only know one of them. Don’t pull hair.
Tucker and Austin are reading about a book about a super hero.
Tucker: Your muscles are bigger than the super hero’s. Do you think you could be a super hero?
Austin: I don’t know, what do super heroes need?
Austin: I think I can do a cape. What else?
Tucker: A special outfit, and special tools.
Austin: Sounds manageable.
Tucker: They need to fly.
Austin: I can’t fly.
Tucker: Well, maybe the cape will help. I think you could be a super hero.
Monday, September 10, 2012
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Sunday, August 12, 2012
“How low do the clouds get?” Tucker asked.
“They can almost touch the ground,” I said.
“Fog is what they call clouds near the ground,” Austin said.
“I bet they can get as low as a medium sized giant,” Tucker said, having clearly thought the issue through.
Friday, August 3, 2012
“They hold that log up by traffic cones!” –Tucker, talking about how the balance beam is constructed for Olympic competition
“I don’t think I can do that, but I bet you can!” –Tucker, on the gold medal gymnastic floor routine.
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Whenever we went to the beach, he made a point of lying down in the water like a water buffalo, and of guarding the kids playing in the sand. He’s totally white around the face now, and has various lumps and bumps and is pretty much deaf now. I even have to point to where food drops if he’s not looking now.