Harper’s Birthday Card

Connor holding his homemade card

Connor and I had so much fun making a birthday card for his friend Harper on Saturday! We put Pusheen kitty stamps on the front, along with block letters in colors she would like. Then Connor asked for a reference picture for BB8 to draw on the inside, so I Googled one for him. He did the drawing and I did the coloring. Then he found an instant photo of our house and drew on it: him giving a flower to Harper, with a speech bubble saying, “I love you, Harper,” with fireworks in the sky. Signed, “To Harper, From Connor.”

Harper and her parents thought the card was totally awesome. We were glad she also liked her presents: a “talking” BB8, a BB8 marshmallow treat, and a Frozen book with stickers, all in a reusable Star Wars tote bag. Connor searched Toys R Us to find something she’d like, and I think he did a great job.

The Family That Shits Together…

Saturday’s regularly scheduled Date Night was cancelled on account of our son puking up blueberries at 6am, then again at 7:30am, then shitting his pants during a poorly-considered trip to Toys-R-Us at 10:30ish.

Of course, since our boy is freaking Wolverine or something, he was doing backward somersaults off the loveseat by the time Daddy woke up around noon-thirty. Still, since bodily fluids were involved, we cancelled the sitter and stayed in for the night. (Alas, we won’t get to see Rogue One in the theater, after all.)

This morning, I woke up feeling fine, but things went south as the morning progressed. By the time I got to my desk, I wanted to lay back down and take a nap. I took some ibuprofen with my morning coffee, and my stomach protested at having anything in it, food or otherwise.

Luckily, I didn’t hurl — although I seriously thought I was going to at one point. I ate a light sushi lunch, and opted for a very light dinner, as well.

(Seems Daddy got a touch of it, too, but a more southerly vector, so to speak.)

Right now, I’m curled up on the couch under an afghan, sipping a mug of peppermint tea and trying not to fall asleep. If I feel like this tomorrow, I’m dropping off my son at Pre-K and coming right back home to bed. I haven’t taken an honest-to-god Sick Day, outside of using half-days for doctor’s appointments, since October 2015.

Man, I feel like ass.

Morning Ritual

The morning ritual starts with me — having finally convinced myself to get out of bed — walking down the short hallway, reaching inside Connor’s bedroom door, and turning on his lamp to start waking him up. Then I go into the bathroom to get ready for work, and he generally stays in bed until I come in and cajole him awake.

Lately, though, the cat has been going into his room before I get there. She hasn’t jumped up on his bed of her own volition yet, but give it time.

When I came out of the bathroom this morning, Connor’s door had been pushed wide open — presumably, when the cat walked in and right back out into the hallway. She followed me into Connor’s room, meowing loudly, as she does. I sat down on Connor’s bed, and she let me pick her up and stand her on my lap — another recent addition to the morning ritual. Connor sat up to listen to Mei purr.

While Connor and I sat on his bed, quietly petting Mei, she started turning in circles on my lap like a dog. Connor exclaimed, “She’s doing a cat jig!”

I’m glad to see Connor’s progress in learning how to pet our cat so she won’t just try to remove herself from the area. She still won’t stick around long — especially not on someone’s lap, and not without an adult also petting her — but she seems to enjoy his petting more than just putting up with it.

Related: I’m grateful that we have a fresh pet-hair-remover wand.

Connor’s “Sord”

Connor's Sord

Today was Show And Tell at Pre-K, where all the kids brought in a toy they got for Christmas. Connor decided to bring one of his three “space swords” that his uncle gave him.

(He doesn’t even care that they’re knock-off light sabers. He even calls them space swords. We won’t get off this easy in years to come.)

After Connor went to bed tonight, I went through the mountain of papers he brought home from school and happened upon this gem near the bottom of the pile.

Gonna have to save this one.

Remembering These Moments

It’s our thing we do when Daddy has to leave for work early during Peak Season: we drive home from pre-k the long way and drive through the neighborhood around the corner that always has the most awesome Christmas lights.

Yesterday evening was the last time we’ll ever take that particular drive.

Not that we won’t ever look at Christmas lights again — just that it won’t ever be just the two of us driving home the long way from pre-k to look at Christmas lights.

I realized we were experiencing a Last Time Ever, so I took special note of every detail.

I snuck glances back at Connor’s face while I drove, to see his entranced expression (even though we’ve driven this route almost every evening). I drove slowly around the one cul-de-sac where nearly all the houses have fantastic light displays, and Connor requested we sit for a moment in front of the best one, with the LED icicle lights above the front door that change colors in patterns. Sitting there, while Pandora played The First Noel, Connor and I noticed the details of the display: the lighted snowmen at play in the yard, half-buried in snow; the twinkling snowflake lights along the walk.

Finally, once Connor said it was OK, we continued our drive toward home, past more houses with more lights — then, surprisingly, one more house had their lights up! And it was a huge display, right on the corner of the neighborhood and the main road, with lighted figures in the back yard and the front yard and lights along the fence and on the front porch. It was amazing and beautiful and a total surprise.

I wanted to drive more slowly down the main road toward home, but the speed limit is 35 mph and people would get seriously irritated if I went 20 instead. So, we rolled past more houses with even more lights, until finally we pulled into our own driveway.

A five-year-old has little to no understanding of the importance of these moments to his parents. I tried to explain to him that things will never be exactly the same again, that we’ll never drive home from pre-k and look at Christmas lights like this again… but he only understands that this weekend is Christmas. He can’t think ahead to when he’s in Kindergarten, and will take the bus home, and will already be home when I get home from work.

Unless we enroll him in Latchkey for Peak Season, in which case maybe I’ll pick him up from school and we’ll take the long way home again…