Parenting advice

When daddy is away TV is on play.

It has become a bit of a ritual for Little J and I. In the evening, before bedtime we snuggle up and watch a documentary. We are not really TV watchers, specially me. So I guess it feels extra special for my son to lounge on the couch tucked under a blanket with me. Because we watched some documentaries on wildlife in Alaska Netflix suggested we might like ‘Out of the wild’ series. We watched the first season where they dropped some folks off in Alaska to fend for themselves and I am pleased to report my six year old had better ideas on how to find food and shelter then most of those adults. Yesterday we finished watching the second. I am not sure how educational it is for my son to watch a show with a bunch of people struggling to survive and hike out of the wilderness of Venezuela but hey, we like it.

As they finally made it to civilization the survivors were greeted by their families and friends. Little J noticed how the tough guys were hugging their moms and he told me I will always be his mommy, no matter how old he is and how long he can survive in the wild. It made my day.

We started talking about children and he announced he will have two.

Me: Why two?

Little J: Cause it’s a fair and share number. Also they will have each other to play with so they won’t bug me like I always bug you.

Me: I like playing with you.

Little J: I know, but I will probably be too busy when I have kids.

Me: I am very busy too. But you can never be too busy you know.

Little J: Also I will not buy them more then 11 toys. I sure don’t want to spend too much time tidying them up.

Me: What are you taking about? You never tidy toys now. I clean up all the LEGOs all the time.

Little J: Exactly. No way I am doing that!

Me: Oh really? What else will you do differently with your kids?

Little J: I will make them play outside in the garden every day. So I can have some peace and quiet.

Me: I see.

Little J: And I will teach them how to survive in the wild. Just in case.

Me: In case of what?

Little J: I want to go on vacation with my wife.

Me: Well that’s what grandmas are for. I can help you with your kids so that you can go on vacation.

Little J: Nah. Cause I will come to see you on my vacation.

My grandkids might be hunting their own food in the forest but my son will be my baby forever. I love my kid.

Tree rings

As a mother one must never pass up an opportunity to teach a child.

Little J and I hike nearly every day. Possibly due to fresh air supply to my brain or coffee that I drink on the way to state parks, my best thinking occurs in the wild. Which works out great because my lovely son has infinite amount of questions that multiply as he walks in nature. I tend to fire the answers pretty fast and well, rarely faking them or using google ( mostly because the signal in the woods is too poor to use the internet.)

Then there are rare occasions where I remember something I learned in school or from my grandfather with enough detail that I can make an educated lesson on the fly. Like the one about the age of trees. I recently enjoyed explaining to Little J the art of telling the past simply by looking at the cross-section of the fallen or cut down tree. As I am sure you all know, every year tree’s growth records a ring. As we count those we can tell how old the tree was. Scientist can also tell by the size of the ring about climate changes, fires, volcanic events, insect infestation, if Lindsey Lohan was arrested that year… To be really fancy I even consulted my assistant aka iPhone and taught my son the study of tree rings is called dendrochronology.

So we counted some rings, practiced math, had an interactive lesson in biology and a physical activity all in one. Pass on the mommy award!

Yesterday morning Little J crawls into my bed. The sun is shining on our faces and he is looking at me lovingly.

Little J: Mommy if you were a tree you would be two years old.

Me: That’s sweet. Why two?

Little J: You have two big lines on your forehead.

Next lesson: chemistry. How to mix up Botox.

Official complaint

Today was the best Valentine’s day ever.

Little J’s preschool organized parents time out between 4 to 8 so that we could celebrate the day of love. My husband had a class so I was left home alone. I napped. Then I ate cheese. It was marvelous.

Apparently Little J did not share the same enthusiasm about his evening. When I picked him up he got in the car and said:

‘Mommy this parent time out was not what I expected. There were no boys, just girls tonight. You know how girls are. All crazy about me, running behind me and bugging me. I had no peace and no time for myself. Then we did two art projects. Not one, but two. That was too much, I felt like I was in school, but without any boys. And then we watched a movie I did not like. It was all mushy and full of princesses. Lucky for me the pizza was tasty. But no dessert after dinner. Really I think you must tell Miss K that this time she did not win my heart with the party. Next time we need to check the schedule before you sign me up. If there are heart projects and pink, I am not going.’

He had some other complaints, but I tuned him out. Frankly he was killing my cheese buzz.

Five year olds are a tough crowd to please…