Saturday, September 29, 2007

Beautiful Day

Last week my mom took Gage for a walk around my neighborhood. He said something to her that she could not quite make out.

She asked him to repeat himself and he said: "Beautiful day. Not rainin' outside."

What a little man! When did this happen!?

He's also been sharing his (very prized) blankie with Lila lately. He'll spread it out on the couch very carefully, then tell me to put her down on it. It's so terribly sweet. Of course after maybe ten seconds he says "O-Tay. Mommy pick up Yi-yah." So I pick her up and he whips the blankie away and stalks off to more private pastures. But we're getting there.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


This is my first blog. I'm not really sure what I'm doing, but I want to give it a try. I'm 27 years old, married, I live in PA. My name's Jen. I have two kids: Gage, who is just over two years old and Lila, who is almost four months. And they're so funny, and they do things that make me think, and it's wrong to not write them down. So.... Hi.

My son, Gage, was born in July of 05. He's an incredibly sweet kid. I've never met anyone like him. He has what I guess is best described as a Sunny Disposition, although I wasn't sure that phrase really meant anything until I needed to use it just now. It's one of those things that you hear but you don't really believe, like Love at First Sight. But Gage is a totally great person even though he's only two.

Have you ever tried to convince a skinny kid to eat? I think I've figured out a couple of tricks. Gage has always been small, and we're always on the lookout for ways to cram more calories in him. Here are a couple of things that almost always work.

* Feed him his dinner from chopsticks. For whatever reason food coming off chopsticks - directly into his mouth - is much tastier than food coming from a normal, every-day fork. Forks. Pshaw.

* Put powdered milk in an old, cleaned-out garlic salt shaker. Whenever you sit down to dinner and you are shaking real garlic salt on your food give your kid his own 'special spice' that he can shake on his food. It's messy, sure, but he eats.

* Give him whatever foods you can in liquid form. Yogurt and fruit in a smoothie. Cream soups. Make chewing inconsequential. I embrace my toddler's old man-nerisms.

So my daughter. Lila. She is so neat - she's strong and beautiful and she always, always sticks her tongue out for pictures. Secretly, I hope she knocks that off soon. But she's a really happy baby, which is something new to us. I don't want to jinx our incredibly sweet, easygoing toddler, but Gage was *not* a happy baby. Far from it. But that is a tale for another day. What you need to know now is that we're so enjoying a plump, cheerful baby.

Lila was born in May of 07 and she's just beginning to figure out her surroundings. She's rolling all around and chewing on her clothes, toys and fists. She's a champion nurser.

Me? I have a job in financial planning and am able to work partially from home, which means that I can spend a lot of time around my kids and we don't need to do daycare. I love that I get to spend so much time with my little ones but once in a while it's a relief to be in the office. Around adults. You know. My husband Mike works in a pretty physical job so he's worn out by the end of the day but he's a great dad, always very interested and very in tune with them.

Let's see...what happened this week? Gage was playing in the backyard in a pile of stones, using a shovel to transfer rocks from the pile to our for-real spaghetti colander (Why, Mike? Why?). I was sitting in the shade of a tree with Lila on my lap and an insulated mug of black coffee within reach. (It *was* the morning, after all.) I heard our neighbor's 22-year-old son revving his car engine and Gage heard it, too. He looked around worridley, picked up his toy phone from next to his abandoned construction hat a few feet away and said into the phone: "Hi. Name's Gage. Big funder (thunder, ahem). Noisy. No hurt you. Bye! Yuv you!" And he tosses the phone aside. He cracks me up - the way you can just watch them figure things out. I mean, you can just *see* it.

He's almost completely potty-trained (Go, Gage!) he just wears diapers at night. On the rare occassion that he has an accident he freezes and looks at me, says: "It happens. It happens sometimes."

When something isn't quite right he says: "Oh, goodness."
He says his sister's name like this: "Yi-yah."

When something is exactly the way he wants it: "Perfect." He'll dump out a pile of blocks, balance one just so on the top of the otherwise-seeming avalanche and utter it quietly: "Perfect."

He steps on our dog's ribcage to get up onto the couch.
He doesn't seem jealous of Lila at all. When he gets a toy for himself he also gets one for Lila. He *needs* to kiss her goodnight before he goes to bed. So far, so good on that front. Siblang Rivalry: 0, Gage: 1.
So far, the hardest part of having two kids is physically getting out of the house. Carrying Lila in her (heavy!) carseat, carrying a diaper bag, my keys, holding Gage's hand, getting everyone in the car without Gage, giggling, running around to the other side of the car as a joke. Ha. Worse is coming home with *anything*.... A cup of coffee, a bag of groceries. Screw it. Just stay in the car until help arrives.
But really, other than that, and the whole lack-of-sleep thing, it's been great. We're taking it one day at a time. What I'm going to do is save up a couple of things to write about each week, and then I'm going to write about them. I hope it makes someone - other than myself - laugh.