Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Stay Thirsty, My Friends

He once crawled up a flight of stairs with alarming speed.  And promptly dove back down with even more alarming speed.

He can spot a millimeter square bit of carpet-colored Lego at fifty feet.  Through walls.

When he blows raspberries at strangers, they ask him to tell them more.

He can call eagles.  And dolphins.  And ducks.

He spurns any endeavor that doesn't involve risk of choking, strangulation, or electric shock.  Danger has begged him, "Please, stop laughing at me."

He loves the night life.  And the night light.

He has reconfigured his daddy's sound system, unlocked the secrets of the iPad's lesser-known features to his mommy, and taught the dog to drink his water midair as it's being flung from the dog bowl.

He is...the most interesting toddler in the world.

I don't always drink milk, but when I do, I prefer organic.

Friday, December 27, 2013

He Ain't Heavy...

Last Christmas we received a very special gift indeed, our beautiful, cherubic Harvey.  All three of us have been nearly gaga over him since the day he was born, we are so in love.

Our precious Oscar has been a magnificent big brother.  We are pleased and proud (and a little surprised, to be honest) that he has manifested so little envy, and instead has been watchful and tenderly caring.  We've also been surprised at how soon they have become friends and playmates -- they amuse each other immensely.  Oscar is enjoying his sibling so much that he has requested four more brothers, and he would like them all to share the same bed, please (like the Whos in "How the Grinch Stole Christmas.")  Apparently his memory of mommy pregnant (think Clark Kent + kryptonite meets Bruce Banner + adrenaline rush) is mercifully short.  Oscar is also planning on being Harvey's daddy.  This is part of a larger scheme in which, after he has grown a few more years, Oscar becomes the third parent in our family.  He has already worked out that he will have a career at G's company, designing and engineering alongside G, sharing an office (but each with his own desk) and commuting there together, taking turns driving of course.  Whenever we explain to him that he will have his own family someday, he starts to cry and says, "But I don't ever want to leave this family!"  Aw, melt my heart!

Note to self:  as soon as the boys are settled in at university, sell off any gaming systems and move into a much smaller house.  NO BASEMENT.

...he's my brother!
Okay, maybe he's a little bit heavy.

Monday, August 27, 2012

He'll Be There All Week

So Oscar started preschool recently.  The first week was only a couple of days, but the next week he was in attendance Monday through Friday.  He wasn't loving it.  Every day he got more and more uncooperative when it was time to get ready, and more and more clingy at drop off.  Finally, on Friday, he told me, unequivocally, that he wasn't going.  I informed him that there was no option -- on the days Daddy goes to his job to do Daddy's work, Oscar goes to his school to do Oscar's work.

When we drove up to the school there were very few cars, to my surprise.  (I later found out that Oscar's class is the only one that meets on Friday -- the others end on Thursday.)  I exclaimed, "Where is everybody?!  There are hardly any cars here."  Oscar answered, "I guess some people thought there was an option."

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Felix Younger

Recently, Oscar and I toured several preschools in order to get an idea of where his extraordinary intellect and charming personality would best be brought along come fall.  Actually, I'm a little behind on the laundry.  But still.  A few of these establishments turned out to be jumped up daycares, "child development centers," as they call them.  (I guess I should have been tipped off by the fact that they take students from 6 weeks old and the school day lasts twelve hours.)  It was a shocking revelation.  Especially when they rolled out the cart with the nap mats.  First of all, ew.  Second of all, there are kids who will lie down on those things and go to sleep???!!!

Oscar can be a little...fastidious.  I don't have any basis for comparison, of course, maybe all kids are like this.  Well, not all, not the ones at the child development centers, apparently.  But maybe it's not so unusual.  His naptime/nighttime ritual is a long, elaborate ceremony, the intricacy of which would make that Da Vinci Code guy proud.  Or baffled.  And if it's not performed with precision (by yours truly, Monkey Boy) at the opportune moment..."No nap today, Mommy!"

After the meal, Oscar gets to play while Mommy cleans up and gets the bed ready.  Then the stalling starts.  Usually, Oscar needs to do a poo, and he says, "Can you go away?  I need privacy."  Every couple of minutes I check to see if he's done.  "Not yet.  Go away!  I need privacy!"  Hmmm.  He's standing next to his play table "choo-ing" trains.  Well, some guys read magazines and others "choo" trains, I guess.  (I'm beginning to think the reason he won't use the toilet is because it would cut into his playtime.)  At last he allows me to supply fresh pants and pajamas.  Then Oscar has a veritable checklist of chores I might have missed that would deprive him of another go around the track.  Did I get the bed ready?  Did I wash my hands?  Did I forget anything else?  Yep, yep, nope.

After that hurdle, Oscar turns on his reading light and chooses his stories (unless it is nighttime, when he has to submit to a teeth-cleaning and we do scriptures and prayers---tack on another fifteen minutes).  Hmmm, so many to choose from.  My every suggestion is shot down.  Unless it's to read all of them.  (I've never actually suggested that.  But he has.)  After the stories, I hold up Oscar's sleep sack (think Snuggie that zips) and he steps into it.  The first attempt is always arms into the wrong holes ("Silly!").  In the summer he would chant, "Two feet are out. One foot is out, one foot is in.  Two feet are in,"  as he shimmied in correctly.  Now, though, he just gets in and sticks one foot out to get caught in the zip.  So I guess he can change it up.  He turns off the light (I used to have to hold him up for that part but now he can reach on his own).  I heft him into his crib (yes, he still sleeps in a crib---and he acknowledges that he can't get out of it because of the "bars and rails"---but it's really the sleep sack that's trapping him, ha!) and he gets a drink while I hold his friends.  Then I lift him up again.  He throws Mousie into the bed.  Oscar, Woofie, and I sing some songs.  I lay Oscar down on top of Mousie and we pretend we can't figure out what has happened to Mousie.  We look for him under the pillow, under the blanket, then under Oscar.  We find him!  He clutches his friends and I ask, "Is everybody in position?"  Oscar answers, "Everybody's in position.  I'm in position, too!"  I tuck his "big blanket" around him.  Then it's time to talk.  "What animals did we feed at the zoo?" was the subject of our conversation for months after we went there with the Buckners.  Then, after Christmas, "Let's talk about the time I was disappointed when Santa came."  After reminiscing, we say goodnight.  Sometimes there are a few last ditch efforts to prolong the process.  He's afraid, he wants me to leave the door open, Mousie and Woofie see a monster.  I pooh pooh his fears.  Faker.  As I'm walking out the door Oscar says urgently, "Wait!  I have a question I need to ask you."  What is it?  He hems and haws.  Goodnight, Oscar.

Perhaps Oscar was named after the wrong half of the Odd Couple.

Oscar's bed at the "ready," from the top: pillow fluffed, mousie face up on the corner of the pillow, woofie "hugging" him, drink at arm's distance, spout on near side, big blanket draped so as to provide hiding place for mousie.
I have a feeling they would not be so accommodating at the daycare.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Scene:  Oscar and G are relaxing on the sofa.

Oscar, pointing to the top of G's shirt where his chest is exposed, "You have feathers."
Then, pointing to his own chest, "I don't have any feathers."

Scene:  G is giving Oscar a goodnight hug.

Oscar, stroking G's cheek, "Is that a cactus?"

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Love Letters

During our recent relocation things got pretty tense--particularly in the first few days following G's departure for his new job--when Oscar and I were left alone to organize the house for the movers.  Under the pressure, my normally sweet, vibrant, cheeky little monkey became one of those frenzied caged primates that screech wildly and fling poop.  That's my story.  If he were blogging, Curious Oscar would describe the scene of carnage in the lobby that occurred after Hundley went rabid.  Let's just say we weren't feelin' the love, so to speak.

Thankfully, Oscar enjoyed a rainfall of kindness in the searing desert of chaotic change that was our home in those days.  Grandpa and Grandma and Matt sent many tender, supportive notes that were particularly directed at Oscar.  Whenever one appeared in the mailbox, Oscar would say, "Let's see what's in it."

One day we opened the mailbox and found one of these letters.  We hurried into the house and plopped down on the rug straight away to look inside.  I read the note to Oscar, emphasizing "We LOVE YOU!"  To Oscar's delight, some happy face stickers were included.  He began peeling off the stickers and carefully placing them on the note.  With each application he repeated, "We love you.  We love you."

We love you, too, Grandpa and Grandma and Matt.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Righteous, Dude.

As soon as Oscar started talking G encouraged him to participate in prayers.  I was impressed with how young a child can be and understand that he should clasp his hands together and say "amen" at the end.  His precious "amens," cued by the name of our Lord, became a source of pride and amusement during church as he joined the congregation in saying "amen" at the end of prayers and talks---and of a wee bit of embarrassment as, in the middle of the sacrament prayer, a lone, resounding "amen" came from our pew.  And it was very funny indeed as we watched General Conference last October.  Bless his little heart.  I'm not sure if he gets what "amen" means.  Or perhaps he really gets it:  he also states it very authoritatively when he closes a book, slams down the lid of the laptop, or wants me to stop talking.

Later he started doing shout-outs during prayer.  "More snow!"  Daddy would petition Heavenly Father for more snow, if it was right.  "Oscar play in it!"  "Daddy play in it!"  "Car play in it!"  G duly asked that we might all play in it.  Another favorite was "More bubbles!"  (G would sometimes bring those little packing pillows home from work for Oscar to pop.)  To my surprise, we got snow this year later than expected.  And bubbles abounded.  Could it be?  These days, unfortunately, we are hard pressed to get him to do anything other than run around wildly shouting at the top of his lungs during prayer time.  I guess there won't be any more snow.

Oscar was fascinated with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir during conference as well.  It was the only time he was transfixed by the proceedings.  He sang along.  It is also true that he will only sit still in sacrament meeting during the hymns.  He holds his book and sings like any other congregant.  Or at least like any other congregant who is tone deaf and doesn't know the words.  So he fits right in.  Singing time is also his favorite part of nursery, and he's really learning the songs (which will later play into his most precious display of religious inclination).

For virtually every family home evening, we bring out the gospel art book and look at the pictures.  Oscar identifies "prophets" in general, and "Prophet Monson," "Prophet Smith," and "Prophet Moroni" in particular.  Moroni is putting the "gold plates" into a "hole."  He also identifies "temples," and, of course, "Jesus."  When asked whom Jesus loves, he replies, "Oscar."  Awww.

It gets better.  When Oscar is in his high chair eating he often points to the picture above our table and says, "temple."  Once when he did this I said, "We love going to the temple."  He shyly used his hand to cover his eyes and beaming smile and said sweetly, "someday."  Isn't he the loveliest boy ever!

The picture above our table is of the Notre Dame cathedral.  Oops.