Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Everyday Learning

As a parent, you may not consciously set goals for yourself to achieve, but I find that as my children grow and develop, I create expectations of them and myself that relate to how "well" I think I'm doing at my job.  Of course I have hopes and dreams for them as far as their futures go, but I also think about the day-to-day stuff that makes up the memories of childhood and sets the foundations for them to build those hopes and dreams on for themselves.  One small thing that I have started to think about is making sure that they learn something new every day.  It's different for each child and each day; it could be as small as Grady learning how to make a new animal sound or say a new word, or a bigger thing like teaching Lilah what cooperation means.  The learning could be funny or silly, such as realizing that blowing raspberries on Momma's arm produces a hilarious sound that makes everyone laugh.  Or it could be an unfortunate lesson (albeit important), like learning that rocking the glider with your head while sitting on the floor is going to result in it coming back to knock you right over and give you a nice bruise on your cheek.  The lessons learned may be from me or Matt consciously "teaching" them, or learning through their experiences.  It is part of my ever-evolving "job" as a mom to keep track of this learning and make sure my children are on a good path to achieve the hopes that I have for them and the goals they set for themselves. 

Since Lilah has been away visiting her grandparents for a few days, I have had the opportunity to spend more one-on-one time with Grady than ever, and at a very fun developmental stage too.  He is really exploring language and comprehension lately, and it seems like he is learning a new word every day.  My days are filled with shouts of "Uh oh!" and "I'm stuck!" (even if the uh oh is caused by him purposely throwing food on the floor, and getting stuck is intentional).  The boy has sure missed his sister though, and has been repeatedly going to the gate at the bottom of the stairs to yell "Wi-wa", which is what he does in the morning when she is home and he's ready for her to wake up.  She'll be thrilled to find out her brother has been playing constantly with her baby stroller, and that his new favorite game is "sleeping" on the couch and then "waking up" to roar at whoever is nearby.

Pretending to sleep on the couch.  I wish you could hear his fake snoring!

Enjoying the free reign over all of the toys.
Reed is changing and developing every day too, although not in ways as noticeable as Grady.  He is learning to tolerate tummy time, and has recently discovered that he likes sucking on his fingers.  He is debuting a new hairdo tonight:

Meet Spike!
And if there is anything more lovely than a sweet baby after a bath, please let me know.  I cherish the moments I get to spend with my littlest at night, when I can lay him on the floor without fear of Destructo stepping all over him, and he just smiles and coos at me like I'm the queen of the world.  And I sure do feel like it sometimes.  And sometimes I feel a little more like the court jester, like when Reed looks at me with Crazy Eyes after I sing him a silly made-up song about spiky hairdos and chunky leg rolls:

"Momma, you are certifiable."
And now this Momma needs to learn a very important parenting lesson: Go to bed early.  I'm off to sleep, can't wait to pick up my girl tomorrow!

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