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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Traveling Woes

Whew. We are home from our travels. We went to Charlottesville for Christmas to see Zach's parents, and the actual visit was wonderful. The traveling, on the other hand, was relatively terrible. Although, even as I write this, I know that we were lucky in comparison to lots of travelers who had it much worse. But still...I think we are giving up traveling at the holidays. With the weather, the 8 trillion other people who are traveling, the expense, and oh yeah...a is just too much.

For Christmas, we decided to fly United directly to Dulles and drive to C'ville from there, thinking that a direct flight would be better so we wouldn't have to worry about connections, getting stranded in random places, losing bags, etc. It was a good thought, in theory. We were over an hour and a half late leaving Birmingham, for unknown reasons. So, if we had had connections, we probably would have missed them, particularly at a big airport with 8 trillion other people there. Anyway, we finally arrive at Dulles and make our way to the baggage claim, where we proceed to wait for about an hour, only to discover that United has lost Will's bag. Now, if you've been paying attention, you will remember that we were on a DIRECT flight. United "lost" Will's bag on a direct flight, which means they simply didn't put it on the plane (again, for unknown reasons). Apparently, they didn't put about half of the bags on the plane because most people on our flight had "lost" luggage. (The worst was the family in front of us who had checked their car seat for their one-year-old.)

So, we file our claim and head out to the rental car place, putting Will in his stroller. However, after putting him in, I notice that the stroller is soaking wet. Our best guess is that we unluckily parked it under a leak while waiting for our bags. The seat was wet, the diaper bag underneath the seat was wet, and now, Will was wet, too. So, if you're still paying attention, you will note that, at this point, Will is soaking wet, all of the extra items in his diaper bag are wet, and his checked bag had not arrived. Off to Target we go!

OK, I've made a long story even longer and more boring, so I'll just sum up by saying that we went to Target and got new clothes, then changed Will in the car. We all had some dinner and then set out to drive to C' was about 7:30 Eastern by then (we were initially supposed to arrive at Dulles at 3:00). By the time we arrived, Will was so worn out and discombobulated that he couldn't settle down. He didn't get to sleep until midnight, and that was only after we put his pack 'n play in our room where he could see us.

Like I said, the visit itself was much better than the traveling, and Will perked up after his bad night. Our trip home was much easier, but still took almost a full day. And, the airline pretended that we were leaving on time, but then we sat on the runway for over an hour. Zach was sitting with Will and said to me, "We haven't even taken off, and I've run out of tricks." Which pretty much sums up traveling with a toddler.

Friday, December 14, 2007


We took Will to see Santa this morning, and it was actually a huge success. I finally did something right by choosing to arrive at the mall around 9:45, knowing that Santa opened at 10. We were the second people in line, and Will could not have been better! He didn't cry or whine at all...and he actually smiled for his picture. I could tell he was thinking, "Who the heck is this guy and what the heck is going on here?" but he cooperated nonetheless.

It was a very quick process: Get in, take the picture, head out before a melt down occurs. Santa also gave Will a candy cane, which he loved. Of course, it was everywhere by the time I took him to school, but it was worth it for his enjoyment.

Note to self: Next year's outfit should be green or blue, so as to not clash with Santa.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Empathy and Punishment

Last weekend, Will had several occasions to learn about empathy, and at least one occasion to learn about punishment. (We also had the opportunity to learn what he thinks about punishment!)
On Sunday, we were playing with Will, and he kept trying to hit Zach. Finally, Zach said, "That's it. You're going in time out." Time out in our house for his age means that we put him in the corner and make him stand there for about 30 seconds. He usually hates it and squirms and tries to get out and sometimes even cries. This was the exact scene when Zach put him in time out that morning. About 30 minutes after the time out, Will and I were playing on the sofa when he tried to bite me. I told him, "If you bite, you have to go to time out." At this point, he hops down off of the sofa, walks over to the corner where we had put him earlier, and says "Mime ow? Mime ow?" Clearly, we have lost this battle and he's only 15 months.
At one point during the weekend, I was changing Will, and he kept pinching my arm. (Are you seeing a disturbing pattern of aggressiveness here? Yes, so are we.) Anyway, I decided to try a new tactic, so I pretended like I was crying to let him know that he was hurting me. Instead of showing any sign of empathy, Will starts laughing so hard he could hardly breathe. Big belly laughs. More laughing than I think I've ever seen from him. Of course, this made me laugh, too. Will: 2, Parents: 0.
We did have one successful parenting venture this weekend. We went to the zoo with the Petreys, and Coleman and Will seemed to have a great time. At one point they were standing next to each other, and we asked if they could give each other a hug. They both turned and gave a perfect hug...the cutest thing you've ever seen. As usual, it's all worth it.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Fifteen Months

Will turned 15 months last week, and on Tuesday, he had his visit with Doctor Levin. As usual, everything seems great...he is growing and developing right on track. He was 27 pounds, 3 ounces, although we can't be sure that was completely accurate because he wouldn't stay still on the scale. As for height, he was 33.5 inches, which is 2 inches taller than he was at one year! He's in the 97% for height and 80% for weight. Needless to say, he's a big kid! (In fact, his daycare teacher said that she weighed all of the kids in the class and Will was the biggest. No big deal, except that he's also the youngest by at least two months...most of the kids are 5-6 months older.)

Will had to get three shots at his visit, and he cried and cried...for about a minute. He was fine once he got his sucker! The sad thing is, he now understands what's going to happen at the doctor's office. I've always hated when he has to get shots, but now it's even worse since I know that he is fearful.

So, what does 15 months look like? In our case, it looks like a blur as Will rushes around us. Ever since he started walking, he has been constantly in motion, constantly exploring, and constantly getting into things he shouldn't! Luckily, he's easy to find because he's also constantly talking. Will knows about 20-25 words that he says frequently, and he can repeat lots of what we say. He knows many animal noises and can point out and say all of your facial features (nose, eyes, mouth, and ears). He even got all of the other kids in his class interested in pointing out each other's noses. At 15 months, Will still loves the bath, loves to play ball or with his stuffed animals, and loves to read books. He even likes to "read" on his own--he'll sit down, ankles crossed, and open his book and "read" it to us, even turning the pages. Will's also gotten more into dancing, lately. Since all of his toys play some sort of music, he loves to activate them and dance to the music. We are working on his "white boy" rythym, although I think he comes by it naturally. I've been trying to show him how to move his arms a bit while he's hilarious.

I could go on and on because he seems to learn and grow each day. There are definitely frustrating times with a toddler, but it's also wonderful to see the world and new experiences through his eyes.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Hide and Seek

In the past few days, I've found
  • A sippy cup (still full of milk!) buried in our laundry basket--I'm certain it had been there for a few days
  • A wooden letter "i" at the bottom of my toiletry drawer in our bathroom--this one had been lost for weeks
  • A sippy cup on the floor in the pantry (damn those sippies)
  • My hairbrush on the floor in the living room
  • My t-shirt on a chair in the kitchen
  • Babar and Lion in our bed
  • Plastic keys to the shape sorter in our closet

Hide and seek is such a fun game! If only Will would actually do some of the "seeking" instead of just the "hiding".