Hug-o-war

As many of my friends and colleagues are aware, I am a huge fan of the techniques covered in How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk. It seems that Micah’s been picking up on the theory that “when kids feel good, they do good.”

This morning I witnessed Micah deftly avoid a huge blow-up with his brother. Here is the scene:

Micah has just come upstairs, and both he and Ezra want to see Lauren.

EZRA: Don’t go into mommy’s room!
[Ezra puts himself squarely in the doorway to our bedroom and glares at Micah. Micah reddens and looks like he’s about to get violent when all of a sudden he cools down and turns to Ezra with a smile.]
MICAH: Ezra, can I have a hug?
EZRA (immediately): Yeah, I love hugs!
(The boys have a big embrace.)
MICAH: Ezra, can I come with you into mommy’s room?
EZRA: Yes! Now that you gave me a hug you can come into mommy’s room. Let’s go in together!

Ezra kills me every time

Ezra is 2.75 years old, and I — although clearly biased — never cease to be amazed by the brilliant things that come out of his mouth. Here are three examples, all from our bedtime routine this evening.

#1

Ezra is playing with an old TI calculator, which he refers to as “my phone.” He then picks up his “red phone” (an old Zune*), and says, “Mommy, this is a phone, and this is my other phone. They are similar.”

#2

After Ezra’s book, it is time for him to help me set his bunny clock and turn on his white noise machine, as he does every night. Our exchange:

LAUREN: Ezra, I need you to come help me with your bunny clock now.
EZRA: Oh, do you want me to turn on the machine? I’d be happy to help with that. Say please.

#3

We’re in the bathroom, and Ezra sees Kenny’s electric toothbrush on the counter.

EZRA: Mommy, whose toothbrush is that?
LAUREN: That one is daddy’s.
EZRA: Oh yeah. You have the same one, but yours has a purple L on it.

Finis.

* You can laugh all you want. Kenny and I have a few of these lying around from the time that they were commonly given out as thank-you gifts upon shipping products at Microsoft. None of ours have been charged in years, but they do make great decoy devices for toddlers.

Micah, Who?

Micah has been going through some emotional turmoil lately, we assume due to feeling jealous of his brother and some normal “threenager” angst. I’m sure it doesn’t help that Kenny and I have both been going through a busy period at work, so Micah is probably getting a bit less one-on-one time than usual. And I hear it’s hard to be the middle kid. So we’ve been seeing some tantrums, hitting, and overall destructive behavior lately (e.g. writing on furniture, throwing objects across the room), interspersed between his normal cute cuddly spells (like “mommy I love you, you’re the best mommy in the world!”). Fortunately cute/cuddly Micah is still more prevalent than angry/destructive Micah.

Micah was ill and needed to stay home from school today. When Kenny was at school dropping Ezra off, he had a short conversation with Micah’s teacher, and he mentioned some of the behaviors we’d been observing.

His teacher’s response:

I don’t think he’s displaying any attention-seeking behavior at all. If we had seventeen Micahs then [co-teacher] and I would be out of a job. He’s amazing and so helpful with everyone. He helps take care of the other kids. I can’t believe he’s the youngest kid in the class.

Maybe she’s talking about a different Micah?

A Few Small Steps for Man

For months I’ve been watching Micah cruise furniture and then delicately lower himself to the ground with a squat to convert to his patented gimp crawl. It’s been obvious for awhile that Micah was strong enough to walk but lacked the conviction to do so. This afternoon I used two of his favorite toys above eye level to coax some steps from him on film:

Haircut

I love that our kids are born with a ton of hair, but our son has been getting pretty shaggy. While the comparisons to Harry Potter and 1960s Elton John were entertaining, he was having trouble seeing his food at breakfast.

I couldn’t bring myself to deal with the logistics of going out for a trim, so I took after my father and took on the role of barber this morning. While Micah was playing with his favorite teether, I made a few strategic snips to clean up our little big man’s flowing tresses.

Pre haircutPost haircut
Before and after his trim

Micah's first haircut snippets
Some of these locks were three inches long!

Bottle Strike

Looks like my first week of paternity leave may have been an anomaly. Lauren worked from home most of Thursday and was off on Friday, so we had a long stretch with minimal bottle feeding. Monday morning rolled along, I was feeling upbeat and confident. Then I brought in the bottle for Micah’s morning nap and he exploded into tears. I managed to get him to take 1.5oz, but he wasn’t that happy about it. I reminded myself that often the first bottle or two of the week are the most challenging ones.

Micah took a measly 1.5oz more after his nap, though he did have a lot of applesauce for lunch. However, he was getting more and more fussy as the day progressed. I knew Micah was hungry and offered the bottle a few times, meeting with a complete refusal. I finally just put him down for his nap and he cried himself to sleep after 15 minutes. He woke up one sleep cycle later, and after another bottle refusal I started getting desperate. I offered him some milk from an open cup – Micah was very eager but only managed to get about 1oz into his mouth. I tried offering some solid foods with minimal success. Finally Lauren rescued me around 4PM.

Continue reading “Bottle Strike”