A ballerina firefighter and her brother the clown

The kids seem to be growing/changing/developing at a crazy fast rate these days, and I feel like I can’t keep up with it all. To remember for posterity, to share with family and friends who are far away and might possibly not check Facebook every second of the day. (Shoot, if that’s the case, they might not read this blog, either!)

Isabelle, at 2 1/2, has decided that she wants to go to kindergarten. Tomorrow. And ride a school bus. Today. We live along the school bus route, so when she sees the buses go by, she almost always  notices and asks, “Am I going to ride the bus?” She also has asked if we’re going to watch her when she rides the bus. Another almost-daily occurrence is the declaration that she’s going to kindergarten or school. She often dons her backpack and says she’s ready for school. I’ll remember these days when she’s a teenager and refusing to get out of bed, right? Who knows, though, maybe she’ll actually like school and be one of those weird kids (me) who wanted to go to school. It’ll be here soon enough; I just wish she wasn’t trying to rush it.

When asked what she wants to be when she grows up, her current response is “a firefighter.” Good thing her grandparents found a firefighter jacket for her to play dress-up with. Occasionally, she also wants to be a ballerina. You go, girl. We live in an age where she could totally do both.

Today at the park, I saw, once again, our little social butterfly emerge. When we arrived, there were no kids at the park. Within minutes, a woman showed up with six  kids and another woman brought her two kids. Forget whatever plans I had for a relaxing time at the park with my two kids. Instead of letting Corban swing in a baby swing and Isabelle play on the age-appropriate slides and equipment for her, I ended up following my daughter around as she tried desperately to join these other kids in their pursuits. She even started calling out their names when she heard the other kids call them. I sort of felt bad, like maybe she needs more social interaction. But maybe she’s just got the sort of personality that easily makes friends and includes everyone. She certainly didn’t get all that from me. I couldn’t even bring myself to say more than “Hi” to the other women at the park, even though I wanted to tell the woman with six kids that she was brave to take on such an endeavor.

This girl wakes up at 90 mph. and doesn’t slow down for most of the day. Including now when she’s supposed to be napping so we can go to the library later. Some days, she is a greater test of patience than others. But she’s better than a cup of coffee to get me going in the morning. She jumps out of bed and yells, “Mommy, mommy” then takes off for the kitchen or living room before I’ve even opened my eyes completely. And if her brother happens to wake up at the same time, she runs to him, loudly shouting, “Cor-ban. Cor-ban. Hey, popsters.” (His dad sometimes calls him Mr. Popsters or Popping-pops. The little sponge has picked up on this nickname and many others we use to describe him. I hope he won’t have a complex that therapy can’t solve later in life.)

Speaking of the boy, he is nearly 10 months old and just this week has started to stand without holding on to anything for longer and longer periods of time. It’s still only a few seconds, but I can see his improved balance and confidence on his feet. He also “walks” while pushing things. It’s only a matter of time. He’s also developed what we call the maniacal laugh. It’s different from his giggle or I-think-my-sister-is-hilarious laugh. He’ll be playing with something and all of a sudden let out this deep “ha-ha-ha” sort of sound that puts Phil and me in stitches every time.

He’s starting to eat us out of house and home. OK, so I know that’s not true yet. Friends with teenagers, especially boys, would tell me it only gets worse. But he’s eating more and more, especially if he can pick it up himself and put it in his mouth. He shunned baby food from a jar for a while, but now he’s eating entire jars in one sitting. We may burn through our stash yet.

Maybe he doesn’t intentionally do it, or maybe he does, but Corban seems to always be doing something goofy to put a smile on our faces. Sometimes it’s just putting an entire piece of fake food in his mouth then smiling. Or walking around with a fake hot dog hanging out of his mouth. Or banging on stuff to make loud noises. Whatever he does, he thinks he’s funny. And I guess that’s a good ingredient for a playful personality.

I often feel like we’re in our own little world and I forget to share these meaningful and ordinary moments with those we care about and who care about the kids. This is my attempt. I know it can’t totally make up for our physical absence in people’s lives, but it’s something.

Enjoy. We sure do.

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