Tuesday, 9 July 2019

A Moment in Parenting: The Sweater Debate

Ever since my son has been old enough to express an opinion on the matter, he has been adamant about two clothing rules:

Rule Number One: Socks are a must. Daytime, nighttime, winter, summer, doesn't matter. He wants socks.

In this case, I have a pretty good idea where Kiddo's belief that socks are a necessity came from. When he started to crawl, he got rough spots on the tops of his feet where they rubbed the carpet in our basement. I started putting socks on him all the time to protect his skin.

It worked really well. I didn't know I was ingraining a rule that would stick, but we have managed to teach him that pools, beaches, and splash pads are exceptions to the socks-always rule. So, whatever, I don't stress about this one. His other rule, however...

Rule Number Two: Sweaters are an abomination. You might as well be putting me in a straitjacket, Mom.

Our living room is, unfortunately, located on the north side of the house with large windows that will eventually need replacing. On many winter mornings Kiddo and I went in there to play and, despite cranked heat, it felt cold. But do you think I could convince him to wear a sweater? If I did put one on him, he'd have it unzipped and off about half a second after I let him go. Instead, I would close the curtains to keep the heat in, crank the furnace further, and hope the heating bill didn't put us in the poorhouse.

Chilly fall and spring mornings that warranted a sweater for the ride to daycare? These often consisted of tears, bribery, and finally a wrestling match to get Kiddo into the sweater that he would be unzipping before he was fully in the door at our daycare provider's house.

While I can relate to his love of socks, I do not at all understand Kiddo's hate of sweaters. I'm always wearing sweaters. Setting the A/C to 23 °C is enough to make me reach for a sweater. If I'm not wearing one, Kiddo will usually ask where it is. Yet his refusal to follow my example has persisted. Until...

July 1st. We took Kiddo to the Canada Day fireworks this year. Knowing it would be chilly by the water after the sun went down, I packed a sweater for him. I had little hope he would wear it, so I also packed his rain jacket. Thankfully, his aversion doesn't include jackets.

About an hour before the fireworks were due to start, we brought Kiddo out on the grass to play with some sparklers.

Kiddo: "I'm cold. It's cold out here."

Me (already planning my counter offer of the rain jacket): "Do you want to put on your sweater?"

Kiddo: "Yes!"

Me: "Really?"

Kiddo: "Yes, I want my OshKosh sweater."

Thankfully, I had in fact brought the favoured OshKosh sweater. I helped him into it, still not too hopeful. The few other times Kiddo has voluntarily put on a sweater, he has changed his mind about it within five minutes.

Kiddo, sweater on, hugs himself: "I'm cozy in my sweater."

Me (sideways glance to Hubby, stunned look on my face): "Great. I'm glad you like it."

Five minutes passed, then ten, then an hour. We got to the end of the fireworks and all the way home and Kiddo stayed happily in his sweater. Wow, I thought. We've reached a turning point.

Yes. A turning point, indeed...

Last night, about 9pm, I heard: "Mommy...Mommy...MOMMY!"

Knowing full well I should ignore this and he'd eventually go to sleep, I went into Kiddo's bedroom to see what was up. He was sitting up on the bed with the OshKosh sweater in front of him.

Kiddo: "I want to wear this."

Me: "Now?"

Kiddo, tears brimming: "It's cold. I want to wear it."

It was definitely not cold in his room. Still, choosing to avoid the late-night meltdown, I helped him put on the sweater. He went to sleep immediately. But, it being July, I was afraid he'd roast. After about half an hour (to ensure he was truly asleep) I went back in and (very carefully) took the sweater off him. I put it back in his dresser drawer. 

This morning, the sweater was on his pillow. He was not happy when we wouldn't let him wear it in the car to daycare. It was 8:15am and already 20 °C with a humidex of 25. We held firm on this one, despite the tears.

Yep, my son who refused to wear sweaters in January has decided he loves them in July. Day and night. I'm taking bets on whether he'll decide he hates them again by November. 

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

This Past Week...

Things that pissed me off in the past week:

1) Windows updates: Which, as far as I can tell, are geared towards giving Windows apps more access to my personal information, and serve no other purpose.

2) The Bell guy: Doorbell rings. I ignore it. Thirty seconds later, it rings again. Thinking a neighbor might need something, I answer. Not a neighbor, it's the Bell guy.

Seriously, dude, two rings are for emergencies only. (Not his first visit, I might add.)

Even after I clearly state it's a bad time, he launches into his "this is the best offer ever you really need to switch to Bell and you really need to do it now" speech. Mid-spiel, I repeat it's a bad time and close the door.

I was tempted to add, "For as long as we live in this house we will not be switching to Bell. Fuck off and don't come back." I kept those thoughts to myself. But if Kiddo, who was napping, had woken up to the sound of that second ring of the doorbell, I'm not sure I could have restrained myself.

3) Static: It was time to change Kiddo's bed sheets. I pulled them off the bed (apparently building up quite the static charge in the process). Sheets bundled under one arm, I turned to leave the room. The clock caught my eye--this was on Sunday, by the way--I realized hadn't adjusted the time yet.

I can do that one handed, it'll only take a second...

I reached out with my free hand. Snap! As I pulled back from the surprisingly-painful shock, the time on the clock jumped to 12:00. Some of the buttons, including the set button, are now dead. Which brings me to...

4) Daylight Savings: When will the insanity end?


Things I enjoyed in the past week:

1) Having a phone chat with a friend I haven't spoken to in ages--two friends, actually, if I go back a few weeks. It was great catching up with both of them. Note to self: I have some good friends. I really need to do a better job staying in touch with them.

2) Reading the Alistair Reynolds novella Diamond Dogs. For someone who likes to write science fiction, I haven't been consuming enough of it lately.

3) Finishing Shetland on Netflix. If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. Though, if you're like me, it might make you want to move to rural Scotland. Unfortunately, I now have to wait for the latest season to come out on TV in the old-school, one-episode-per-week fashion. I should find this prospect less distressing than I do, considering I have memories of watching a little black-and-white TV with a coat hanger for an antenna.

4) Watching Kiddo's swimming lesson. He just finished his first 8-week session without a parent in the pool. A few months ago Hubby and I had a conversation that went something like this:

Hubby: "I think he's ready to do swimming lessons on his own."

Me: "You're kidding."

Hubby: "He's definitely ready."

Me: "No way. He'll freak out."

Hubby: "He'll do fine. He is so ready. "

Me: "He's so not ready."

We went back and forth for a while. I gave in, and Hubby signed Kiddo up for the no-parent lessons.

Hubby was right. Kiddo did great. Moral of the story: I have a tendency to underestimate my son. (Of course, I kinda knew that already.)


Tuesday, 12 February 2019

Ever Wonder Who is Really in Charge?

Whether I'm gone for two hours, or two seconds, I always come back to this:


 The cat doesn't even need to be in the room when I get up. She just knows...


Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Things Kids Say

Kiddo recently had the following conversation with his dad:


Kiddo: "Mommy's mommy is Grammie."

Dad: "That's right."

Kiddo: "Your mommy is Oma."

Dad: "Yes."

Kiddo: "There are lots of mommies."

Dad: "Yes there are."

Kiddo: "And lots of daddies."

Dad: "And lots of little boys and girls."

Kiddo: "There are lots of reindeers!!"

Always fun to see where his brain will jump next. It's safe to say Kiddo is learning to appreciate the holiday concept, or rather the 'treats and presents' concept.

We were still discussing Halloween regularly right up to Christmas Eve, and odd mentions of pumpkins, skeletons, and costumes still surface now and then. Just yesterday we had a recounting of the costumes of all the neighborhood children Kiddo's age.

I predict random Christmas commentary will continue indefinitely, or at least until his birthday (in August).

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

More Reading = Less TV?

I love to read. I also love to watch TV. Unfortunately, in order to consume as many stories in both mediums as I would like, I'd have to give up sleep.

I like sleep. I need sleep. You don't want to spend the day with me if I have not slept.

Lately I've found TV has been winning over reading. Let's face it, after Kiddo goes to bed, it's easier to zone out in front of Netflix than read a book. Books require concentration.

I was out shopping recently, and thinking how I would like to push the reading vs watching balance back toward the reading end of the spectrum, at least a little bit. I popped into Indigo and grabbed George R.R. Martin's Nightflyers.


The good news is: I enjoyed it. It kept me awake for more than three pages at a time, even after 10pm. These days, that's saying something.

The bad news is: As you can see from the cover, this book has been turned into a TV series. Now I have more TV to watch.

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Truffula Trees

Yesterday, I read Kiddo The Lorax. He immediately went downstairs to build a 'big chopper' and some truffula trees out of Duplo:


Based on the fate of the trees, I think it's safe to assume he missed the intended moral of the story 😄




Friday, 16 November 2018

Kiddo Questions: Piano

My piano is currently on the floor in the living room. It has a stand, but the stand has collapsed twice. Until I find a new one, the piano will stay on the ground. Not the most decorative arrangement, but on the plus side, Kiddo has easy access.

Mostly, he's interested in rolling his toy cars over the keys. He's also figured out how to get the demo songs to play. Every once in a while he actually tries to play it properly. Recently, he started counting the keys from left to right. I seized the teaching moment.

Me: "This is the A-key, B, C, D, E, F, G. Then it starts again with A, B, C"

Kiddo: "Where's the H go?"

Me: "There's no H on the piano."

Kiddo: "There is."

Me: "No, there isn't."

Kiddo, banging the keys consecutively, "H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P..."

Maybe a bit too soon for piano lessons.