big news for Henry’s family

Cousin Katie reports that the people involved in her son Henry’s death have been arrested on drug trafficking charges.

It’s a big day. I’m so glad that these people have to face up to the dangerous, deadly actions they’ve taken (i.e. dealing drugs), and also hopeful that these arrests will help bring a measure of peace to Henry’s grieving family.

😀

choo choo

So there’s this train museum that turned out to be really awesome. At first, I thought it was a weird, dusty, primed-for-a-horror-movie space, but no. One had to get past the weird collections and just accept that some people collect, like, a lot of stuff that might otherwise be discarded.


And build doll-houses of famous structures.

And create elfin railways around sheds of rusty farm equipment, weedy jungles, and wavy-bricked, yard-arted patios. That, too.

It was totally great, and we will totally be back, if only for the deliriously addictive way that Rainbow gripped my hands as we went around the doll railroad track.

It’s pretty much the best feeling ever.

ch-ch-ch-changes

We’re changing preschools.

I’ve been waking up at night and fretting about whether it’s the right call, worrying that I will upset his happy little life for my own preferences, wondering if I’ll regret it.

But I’m pretty sure I won’t. His current preschool has been great; very nurturing and loving and stimulating. There is no drama here. I just found a place that suits a little better, driving convenience-wise, and there are a few other things I prefer a bit about it. He’s just now reached the age to move into a new age-bracket class, so I’m doing it. We are LOCKED IN. It’s happening, fo shizzle, in a week or two.

(grips roiling stomach)

Here is his school photo, taken at his current (soon to be former) preschool, where they magically got him to hold still, smile, and pose like a forty-year old:

At two-and-a-half, he just dazzles me. He acts perfectly two-ish (e.g. today I took him for a playdate to the bouncy inflatable place, got thoroughly exhausted chasing him around on all the equipment, and was totally ready for a nap, when he pulled a big H to the NO on me and proceeded to dump out all the toy bins and drawers he could get his hands on, in between flailing on the floor in nap-deprived misery) but he acts perfect, for a two-year old.

He’s funny and handsome and strapping, cuddly and squirmy, and again and again I get that weirdly comforting swoon when I play with him that tells me LORD but I’d do anything in my power for this child.

Rainbow at 30 months

is fabulous.

He’s still a picky discriminating eater. He has his faves and that’s about it, although his preschool teacher reports that he eats things like carrots and corn and meatballs and turkey for him. I’ve yet to see it. For me, he’ll eat French toast, monkey cheese (mac’n cheese), grilled cheese sandwiches (especially those cut into shapes), raisins, bananas, watermelon, yogurt with wheat germ and strawberry puree spread, graham crackers, string cheese, and… ummm…

He’ll taste veggies for us at the dinner table, which is good. He’ll eat a teeny bite of green bean or broccoli in order to earn some more grilled cheese, so I count that as progress. Also, this child is healthy as a horse, so I’m not so worried about his diet. A varied palate will come.

He has now mastered the getting into stuff aspect of two-ishness. His latest trick is to hide himself in the toilet closet in my bathroom. I’ll track him down there and find him standing at the closed toilet with an array of forbidden items on the toilet lid: cuticle cream, essential oil, shampoo, shave gel. He’ll look up, irritated: Go ‘way, Mama. Shut de door.

Suuuuure, buddy, I’ll just slip away and leave you to your work.

I found him the other day with Nair wiped on his chest in a Zorro stripe and the nozzles off of two cans of hairspray, aggressively trying to open a bottle of nail polish.

So, there’s that, but he’s also so damn cute while he’s at it that it sort of balances out.

The sleep thing might be on the upswing. Maybe. I made a huge effort last night to entertain and coddle him during evening hours. We got a cookie after preschool at the coffee shop, played and ran all over the house, had an on-time family dinner, took a nice bath, had a prolonged bedtime routine.

He did the flip-out trick again as I left – going from fully cozy and sleepy-content to raving DON’T LEAVE ME!! lunatic – and Daddy J stepped in as I was trying to shut the door on him and calmly insist that he go to bed BECAUSE CUDDLE TIME IS OVER UNTIL THE SUN COMES UP I MEAN IT.

Daddy gave him one more song and left him crying, but within one little minute he gave up and got quiet. I checked on him after we watched an episode of the Tudors (oh, that wicked, tormented Henry the Eighth!) and he was totally snuggled in bed with Puppy and Binky, sleeping deeply. And slept til 6:45 this morning.

On one hand, it makes me sad for him to learn to settle himself, because I want him to want me, you know? It feels like a sad, albeit positive and necessary, little milestone.

He’s growing up.

It’s good.

submission

Rainbow’s New Thing is to wake up and call for us, then insist that we lay down with him until he is 100% asleep. It’s sort of sweet and snuggly, but also a bummer at 4:30 in the morning when you really just want to stay in your own bed.

He’s done it more of the last few days than not. It’s like he’s afraid to sleep alone. I feel for him: I acutely remember becoming aware of the unfairness of the whole thing as a little kid. It dawned on me that my parents got to sleep together every night, but I had to sleep all alone. I did sleep with my dog (a Shih Tzu) and if Rainbow were older and Scarlett were fully housebroken, I’d totally go with that. Doggies are super comforting to little kids at night, and no doubt the doggies love sleeping in a human bed. But at this point, I’m pretty sure Rainbow wouldn’t snuggle calmly with the wiener dog. Also, she’d pee on the floor. So that’s out.

This morning I lay down with him for a good half an hour, feeling very virtuous and patient and SURE he was fully asleep. The room was so calm and serene as I left him breathing deeply and slowly. Then when I started to push his door shut, he realized he’d been left. AND FREAKED OUT. Just weepily insisting I lay down with him. Growing more frantic. Grabbing my hand and BEGGING. I tried rocking him in lieu of laying down with him, wanting to stick to my guns when I told him that Mama was all done sleeping in his bed. But, no. Just, no. Full-on freak out, big wet tears, and a final result of two parents and two year old up at 5:00 am.

Again.

I think the take-home lesson here is what the pediatrician has said multiple times: Whatever gets the most people the most sleep most nights wins.

Yeah. I think I’ll just sleep with him from waking time on the next time this happens. Like, tonight. And worry about getting him used to sleeping on his own sometime in the future.

Because we’ve GOT to get more sleep than this.

debinking

Big boy bed: CHECK
All settled in to preschool: CHECK
Pretty much potty trained: CHECK

There’s really no excuse any more; that binky’s got to go.

It’s not so much a big deal orthodontically, I don’t think, since he just uses it while he’s in bed. The main bummer is that he wakes up and demands help finding it during the night. We’ll go in his room and it will be folded up in his blanket, wedged next to the mattress (which is on the floor), or fully disappeared into another plane of existence, at which point we pull out a spare. The other night Daddy J found it on Rainbow’s CHEST, completely visible while he was laying there begging for it. He popped it in his mouth and went straight to sleep.

So, yeah, that part’s annoying.

Also, he’s two and a half, and an awfully big two and a half, at that. He just seems enormous to be still using a binky. And yes, his size isn’t his fault or anything. Inside, he’s still a toddler. Who wears size four or even five kid clothes.

Anyway, we’re ready to retire it.

OPTIONS

1. Cold Turkey. We tried this once and it was a colossal failure. You’d think he’d get exhausted and give up on the idea after a while and just succumb to sleep, but NO. He got whipped into a frantic, despairing frenzy: WHERE’S BINKY??? Just went nuts. Obviously, if we don’t let him have binky at all, ever again, he won’t have it. But I think we’d lose our sanity in the process.

2. The Paci Fairy. Sigh. Sure, he loves the book. I mean, Duh, it’s all about binkies. It has grown-ups with binkies, babies with binkies, and fairies holding binkies. Rainbow thinks it’s a hoot to have me read it to him while he has a binky in his mouth, occasionally popping it out to examine it, then popping it back in. However, the whole give up binky = gift for the boy thing is totally lost on him.

3. Surgery on the binky.
I’ve heard of two strategies here: cutting off the business end in a swift beheading and just nipping off a wee bit every night until there’s nothing left. It seems that the sudden lopping off would yield the same result as Option #1, and I’m concerned about structural integrity with the gradual nipping. Wouldn’t the silicone tear and become a chokie while he sucked on it?

4. Piercing the binky with a pin or nail. Might work? Apparently it messes up the proper suckability of the pacifier, although I’m still a little concerned about the silicone tearing. But surely it could tolerate a pinhole without tearing…?

5. Befouling the binky. Douse the binky with something yucky tasting before bedtime. I’ve heard of hot sauce, but I don’t want to, like, hurt him, you know? I’m leaning toward vinegar, I think, or maybe lemon juice. Maybe he’d just taste it and toss it aside without falling totally apart?

If you have a terrific idea, please do share it. Have I left out an option?

Also, if you could help me figure out how to get a 30 month old to nap in a big boy bed, that would be AWESOME.

fuzzy

Remembering sweater dresses in all their figure-concealing glory at Like Totally 80’s this week.

Take a minute to click on the link to Seventeen magazine covers through the years. Amazing what famous faces started out on the cover of seventeen, like Whitney Houston and Milla Jovovich (at age 13!).

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