Chats with Matt Episode 5: The Family Edition

Something that Matt and I are working very hard with Brandon on is instilling good manners. When he asks for something, he should say “please”. When he receives something, “thank you”, etc.

One of the biggest challenges in this with small children can be their whims. Sometimes it goes against their whim to ask politely or say thank you. For Brandon, we’ve been able to work through his phases of refusing to be polite fairly easily.

Another particularly frustrating challenge is that they learn quickly to associate asking “please” with an automatic “yes” from mommy or daddy. This is only ever a challenge when “no” is the answer.

The third challenge we’ve had is good ol’ communication as demonstrated by this recent exchange:

Brandon: More.

Matt: More what?

Brandon: More, please.

Matt & Karen: Please, please, please, please, please. (Poor kid. He’s got some smart ass parents.)

Matt: More what please.

Brandon: Aw-wight. (All right)

Karen: What do you want more of?

Brandon: Some more please. Ask please. (This is code for “I am asking nicely and remembering my manners so you should give me what I want.)

Matt: Brandon, you’re asking very nicely. Can you tell me what you want?

Brandon: Orng juice. More please.

Matt & Karen: Orange juice!

If only we could read his mind.

Chats with Matt Episode 4: The Future

Nap time was over. Matt got Brandon out of bed and the child immediately began running through the upstairs looking for me. I could hear the excitement in his voice as he called for me. I could hear the urgency in his footsteps as he sought me out.

I was downstairs. (No, not hiding.)

Matt steered Brandon in the right direction and when he turned the corner in the kitchen, he ran to me with a huge smile and arms outstretched. It was one of those sweet moments that make your day.

After snack, we went downstairs to watch “green” - also known as Mommy or Daddy playing Super Mario Galaxy 2

Brandon, clearly still groggy from his nap, crawled up into my lap and curled up into a sweet snuggle. (Yeah, TWO of these moments within 30 minutes of each other.)

Such sweet boys, aren’t they? I’m betting Brandon takes after his father. He has the same mischievous look.Matt came over behind him and gently draped a blanket over Brandon as he snuggled in even closer, and said with an earnest look on his face, “Take good care of him. He’s the future.”

I just looked at him and snorted.

Then Matt spoke again, “And I’m the past.”

“Yeah, the distant past,” I replied. (There may have been another snort.)

At that point, Matt’s earnest face broke into a grin, “Yeah, well you’re not that far behind.” 

Chats with Matt Episode 3: Pills

Matt and the 35lb. pill. You can tell by the look on Matt’s face that he’s up to something.Last weekend, I was “sleeping in” (read: laying in bed reading, because I don’t sleep in) and also nursing a migraine. Migraines have been the bane of my existence for the past three to four months and the last few weeks they’ve increased in frequency and severity. 

Good times, right?

So, I had a bit of time to myself and decided to take my pill and lay down rather than getting up to do anything.

Matt came in at one point and saw that I was awake, so of course he started doing his best to make me want him to leave. (He’s really good at that and takes pride in it, too.) He was supposed to be hanging out with Brandon, but who knows what trouble the child was getting into.

I said something to the effect that he should be nice to me since I wasn’t feeling well.

His face lit with a big grin as he replied, “I’ve got a 35lb. pill I can bring in here to make you feel better.”

Chats with Matt Episode 2: Spiders

This week’s episode of Chats with Matt started when a friend of mine came over to my house for lunch a few days ago and, as I was giving her the tour of the basement, she noticed a spider on the stairs. I didn’t really move to do anything about it, but she grabbed a tissue as I stood and watched her dispose of the spider.

I was fine with her take-charge attitude. I don’t like spiders, though I’ll deal with them if I absolutely have to. It would require a handful of tissues, rather than the single one my friend used - or preferably a ten-foot pole. Creepy crawly critters give me the creepy crawlies. The whole time I was thinking that if she hadn’t taken care of it, that spider would have been Matt’s first job when he walked through the door.

Later that night, I told Matt about it and he got this smirk on his face, shook his head and said, “You really need to get over your fear of spiders.”

Me: No, I don’t.

Matt: I got over my fear of commitment. You need to get over your fear of spiders.

Me: It’s not the same thing.

Matt: It’s exactly the same thing. You’re afraid of blood-sucking leeches and so was I.

Me: I’m going upstairs. (In my head, I’m thinking: Good one, but what do blood-sucking leeches have to do with spiders?!!!)

Matt: What are you going to do?

Me: Blog about you.

Chats with Matt Episode 1: Shoes

On the way home from work yesterday, we stopped to buy new tennis shoes for Brandon now that the weather is starting to cool off. We knew it was going to be a battle to get him to wear them, because he’s so attached to his sandals.

The shoe transition from season to season is almost worse than trying to get him into a snowsuit. And, unless by some miracle he happens to learn to adjust more easily, we’ll be going through this again in the spring when we try to get him to give up his snow boots. Every attempt we made to put those new shoes anywhere near his feet ended in screaming and crying fits, and we eventually gave up and just left the shoes on the floor. 

*****

Later in the evening, Matt told me that Brandon tried to put his new shoes on.

Me: When?

Matt: When you were off doing whatever it was you were doing earlier - the bathroom or something.

Me: Oh, you mean when I left you all alone to raise him?

Matt: Yes.

Me: It’s hard raising a child on your own.

Matt: It is, but you know about that from all the times you’ve had to do it.

Me: No, I’ve always had help.

Matt: Really? Who?

Me: This awesome guy I know.

Matt: Now I know you’re cheating on me, because you sure aren’t talking about me.