Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Jack in the Box

So I mentioned the difficulty of trying to keep two little ones entertained all day in the dead of winter.  Ironically, Jack has been lengthening his days over the past few weeks.  Instead of rising after 7am, he's now been calling my name between 6-6:30.  Actually, he started getting out of his bed last week.  I put a stop to that and now I get to lay in bed every morning and hear him say, "Moooooommy, door.  Mooooooommy, door" for about 20 minutes straight before I give in.  As if it isn't hard enough to fill the day with stuff to do, I now have an extra 30 minutes to add to that. 

A year ago, after our trip out west, I was quite certain I didn't want to get on a plane with Jack again for a very long time.  But frankly, at this point, I could consider getting on a plane with both Jack and Jude, all by myself, and flying for hours and hours and hours ... if it meant sunny skies, big open fields, and lots of bugs and dirt.  *sigh*  Instead, when I see Jack start running circles around the kitchen, living room and play room, I start clapping my hands and encouraging him to keep going and going and going.  Keep running.  Don't stop.  Burn that energy!!

One day this month it actually hit 50 and the first thing Jack asked was to go on the swing. It reminded me of summer and how we used to swing every day. And go on walks. And spend an hour at the playground. And run around outside in the evenings. Those are hours each week where Jack was occupied and happy. Hours that I now have to fill within these four walls. I'm sure, if I really wanted to, I could come up with lots of fun games and toys for even Jack's short attention span. But between work and potty training and Jude's ever shortening naps ... it takes all my remaining brainpower just to plan out dinner.

Thankfully, my kid has a few creative thinking genes of his own.  And amazingly, isn't afraid of dark, crammed quarters.

I should also mention here that his dad and I tired of saying "Where's Jack?" long before Jack got tired of pretending to disappear. Kids are so funny. I mean, does he really think that we don't know where he is after the second, third, uhhh twentieth time?  I need to dig out my Child Psych textbook and read back up on this...

Apparently, Jack thinks all boxes are the same.  After Daddy threw the big one away, Jack was pretty excited to see this little guy arrive on our doorstep a few days later.  Full of "Frossy a 'no man" too (i.e. packing peanuts).  He immediately started calling it "Jack's box" and went right to work playing hide and seek again.

As you can see, it didn't really work out for the little guy.  I thought I had a lot of bloody lips growing up (thanks to my brothers), but in his 2 short years Jack has me beat.  He knows the routine well enough now that he'll immediately ask for frozen fruit as soon as he realizes he's been injured.  And I oblige, because I've never seen a fat lip heal as quickly, or tears dry as fast, as they do with a nice bowl of frozen strawberries in hand.

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