Sunday, June 29, 2008

Baby and Me

After failing to post on any of my blogs for several weeks, I am on a roll tonight! To hear how the boys did at their Big Sibling class yesterday, check out my cross post at Atlanta Parent Online.

Food Wars

The children are officially on a food strike. Actually, let me clarify that - they are on a nutritious food strike. In the past, food has never been an issue with the boys. Cade was an adventurous eater from an early age, eagerly consuming foods such as sushi (the safe kind - with the fake crab) and Indian foods (the spicier, the better) before he had even turned one. A glance at Drew's baby pictures from months 4 to about 18 clearly demonstrate the he never met a food he didn't like. My doctor mistakenly suspected twins very early in my pregnancy with Drew and he was such a big baby and ate so much food that we have a running family joke that he ate his twin.

But they have both officially outgrown that now. The short list of foods they will happily eat includes:
-Macaroni and cheese (only the DayGlo orange Kraft variety)
-Peanut Butter and Jelly (will accept on whole grain wheat bread with all-natural peanut butter, as long as the jam isn't sugar-free)
-Cereals of pretty much any kind, including Kashi (which just infuriates Aaron since he is pretty much staunchly opposed to any foods that are either organic, environmentally sound, or perceived to be politically correct in any way)
-Oatmeal (as long as there is brown sugar)
-Apple sauce (all natural, sugar free)
-Yogurt (must be the generic Publix bright pink or blue kids yogurt cups)
-Fruit leather - kinda like a Fruit Roll-Up, but with no sugar added
-Bratwurst (does this count as a food?)

Drew will still consume certain fruits, provided he is in the mood. He will eat an entire pineapple one day, only to deem pineapple completely unacceptable the next week. But by introducing a carefully orchestrated fruit rotation, I can get him to ingest watermelon, pineapple, cantaloupe, grapes (only red ones), and oranges. And the occasional apple, which he will chew and then regurgitate undigested, but I figure it counts because some of the nutrients absorb during chewing, right?

Cade eats no fruits (too mushy!) and no "begetables" (no reason cited). He will choke down the three or so bites that I mandate in order to earn some other food goal (like a handful of Cheese Nips), but the negotiation and gagging involved hardly make it worth my energy. We have even gotten to the point where he will no longer accept bananas carefully disguised in banana bread.

I love to cook, but I refuse to cater to their food demands by making special meals. Every night (okay, most nights) I prepare a delicious meal with ingredients that I think will be acceptable to most members of the family and we sit down to eat as a family. Drew will pick out and consume the tolerable components of the meal, but Cade doesn't even try the food, and the other night he was so bold as to take one look at the pasta dish and exclaim, "Wow! Disgusting!"

Since they rarely eat at meals, they are naturally hungry (and begging for inappropriate snack foods) all day long. It is making me absolutely CRAZY this summer. I always swore I would never make food an issue, but this is getting ridiculous! I don't have a problem with anyone eating a handful of animal crackers IF they have eaten dinner, but small children cannot exist on Goldfish crackers alone and I am sick to death of playing Food Police. A good friend with kids the same ages cracked down by purging her house of all junk food, which I keep saying I'm going to do, but can't bring myself to do. Isn't there any other way to win the Food Wars?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

My Big Little Boy

Today at bathtime, Cade informed me that he was going to take a shower instead of a bath. Since past attempts at showering have resulted in him darting in and out of the shower changing his mind about whether he actually wants to be there or is afraid of the water, my first instinct was to refuse the request.

But something about him seemed more determined this time, so I acquiesced, and to my surprise, all went well! When I asked him if he was ready to get out, he pulled the shower curtain shut and said he wasn't "clean enough" yet! This from a child who spends the bulk of bathtime trying to dodge the washcloth and my hand with the shampoo in it?!?!

He seemed so grown up that I felt sad. There was a time when I was eagerly anticipating the day that even one child would self-sufficiently bound into the shower instead of leaving me to micromanage every aspect of personal hygiene and the tsunami of water on the bathroom floor afterwards. But now that another Big Boy Moment is here, I just want to press "pause" on all of it. Maybe because Cade has had a string of Big Boy Moments these past few weeks, including:
  • He dresses himself. Underwear is always backwards, but who can see it anyway?
  • He makes his own oatmeal in the morning. He isn't allowed to use the microwave, but he mixes it all and puts it in the microwave and then calls us to heat it up.
  • He now swims the width of the pool with his face in the water and is able to tread water when he gets tired.
  • He has FINALLY started to peepee standing up. Which I have mixed feelings about. I feared he would get beat up in the locker room if he didn't learn this skill before high school, but it is such a messy skill to learn that I am really missing the days when my bathrooms didn't all look like gas station restrooms.
  • He has started calling us "Mom" and "Dad" instead of Mommy and Daddy. Which made me sad until I realized that he is still one step behind Drew, who calls us "Cara" and "Aaron".
  • His absolute favorite pastime is listening to music on his CD and tape players. Really loud. Every time I scream up the stairs at him to turn the music down, I have a flash forward to the teen years and wonder how I got there so soon.
  • He has eclectic taste in music. He loves everything from The Wiggles to The Nutcracker (year round) to Tom Petty. He has totally raided our music collection for his favorites, leaving Aaron and I with just The Bangles and some Billy Joel. He is desperate for a record player like they have at school. Yep - the vinyl kind. Next thing we know he will be asking for an Atari.
  • Speaking of music, he commented to a lady at the pool the other day that he liked her cool I-Pod.
  • His made his first attempt at a curse: "Holy Drat, Mom! I think this is broken now!"
Of course I am proud to see him getting so big and things are certainly easier to manage in the day to day since he is getting so self-sufficient. But in the grand scheme of things, it's going too fast for me - it seems like just yesterday I was anxiously awaiting Baby Cade's arrival.

I'm not sure if it's just pregnancy hormones or if all moms feel this way. I just know that I'm grateful that at least Drew is still afraid of the shower.

Friday, June 6, 2008

A Mommy Moment...Or 15 Hours of Them

I was so proud of us this morning - we were out the door at 9 am and on a roll. By noon, we had hit the pediatrician's office (Drew tripped over the rug in our living room and gave himself his second head injury of the week), the haircut place, the dreaded post office, and ToysRUs for a new baby pool.

That pretty much pushed everyone to the limit, so we dashed home where I rushed around to get lunch ready. During which time Cade says to me, "Mommy! Why do you have a lollipop on your bum?" I turn around and sure enough, there is a blue sucker stuck to my rear end. I said, "Oh my gosh, Cade! You're right! How long has that been there?" His response: "For 15 hours."

And he's right. We got lollipops at the haircut place. Stop #2 this morning.

I am officially a cliche. The pregnant woman in line at the post office with her screaming brats and a lollipop stuck to her ass - how sad.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Where in the World are Cade and Drew?

What are Cade and Drew up to these days? Summer is off to glorious start for us - check out my Atlanta Parent post on summer in the Fox house.