Maybe it's the air. Maybe it's the water. Maybe it's the moon.
Stratch that- it's not the moon; full moon was over the weekend.
Unless these are just odd aftereffects...
I know! It was the birth of a new second cousin. Contagious excitement, and all that.
In any case, my kids have been a little weird today, in good and bad ways. Bedtime was such an atrocity on all sides (and in Michael's case, continues to be) that it's taken me over an hour to work myself up to starting a post at all.
However, the rest? Mostly kooky, and fun.
Since the day he began crawling, Michael has always had a penchant for seeking out and eating trash off of the floor. I didn't really have this problem too much with Abby. Though she had a bad habit of munching on her books, she left most other small, non-food or old food items alone. And while she still, aggravatingly, insists on mouthing nearly all of her toys, and some of her books, she generally knows what kinds of things are appropriate for eating, and sticks to those. (Let's ignore that one time I caught her nomming a crayon a couple of months ago. Blech.)
It gets tiresome, trying to chase him away from the sofa cushions, under which he goes surfing for all kinds of disgustingness. It's downright gruesome to still be pulling hairs out of places they should never be. And so, the other day when I caught him sneaking a stale, dry, bit of popcorn, I got a little short with him. I immediately felt bad, as I watched his big, wide eyes water, but he moved on and so did I.
The message must have finally sunk in, however, because today he came up to me, old morsel of food in hand, and offered it up for my disposal. I was caught completely off-guard, not only by the gesture, but by the eagerness with which he carried it out. "Thank you, Michael," I said, more shocked than anything. I placed the crumb in a nearby trash can, and got a massive smile in return. He ran off, quite pleased with himself.
No sooner had I looked back down than he was back again, however, bearing gifts. This time, I made a bigger deal, and Michael got an even bigger kick out of the whole thing. He managed to search and retrieve another two items before either giving up on finding more or losing interest in the game.
Abby, in the meantime, has been insisting all day that we address her as Snow White, and has spent a good part of it narrating Snow White's self-imagined adventures to no one in particular. But perhaps the most remarkable thing, regarding Abby, happened after the monumental failure that was bedtime.
Tom tried to deposit her, as usual, in her bed after story time. This evening, she requested that he put the fan on, which has been unplugged ever since I swapped its cord out for that of the space heater some weeks ago. Since the outlet is covered, it would have been a bit complicated to switch back, and Tom was in no mood. She had her space heater running already for air circulation and white noise.
Oh, the drama that ensued when Tom finally shut the door behind him. She screamed and wailed nonsensically for nearly an hour. Towards the end of her rant, I could hear a specific request being communicated. "I lost my binky!" came the moan. Once I figured out what I was hearing, I sat up, poised to grab a new one for her. But then I hesitated.
We're getting so close to the point at which we'll need to break her of the too-long-held habit, it occurred to me that I should perhaps let this thing play out a little longer. Judging by the sounds that she was making, she'd gotten too tired to really invest any emotion into what she was saying; she was merely riding along on the momentum of her earlier tantrum, deliriously chanting her mantra in so ridiculous a manner that I had to keep stifling my laughter as I watched her over the video monitor.
Within five minutes, she'd given up. After another five, she'd lain herself down. Five minutes after that, I was pretty certain she was asleep, without the binky that she likely flung from herself in the midst of her earlier drama.
Of course, all of this could mean nothing. She could suddenly wake (as Michael has been mysteriously doing every thirty minutes or so), and demand to have the thing. She could sleep through, but insist tomorrow that she needs it still.
Whatever happens, though, we've proved it can be done. That's something, for sure.