Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Few Short Stories

Two must be such a hard age to be; Eli seems so much like an adolescent sometimes because his emotions are so uneven. It's so much fun to watch Eli growing up...but sometimes he can be so...erm...challenging. It is so weird to me to see my child, who is extremely verbal and loves to communicate, throw a tantrum because I didn't put a certain TV show on. He's learned his lesson about touching the TV remote...we're still laughing about that one...he tried to change the channel and accidentally turned it to a "very scary man". He's still really freaked out about the remote control.

I guess what I'm trying to sat is that sometimes he seems much older/wiser than two...sometimes he acts exactly his age.

A few nights ago, after Eli had calmed down (and even taken a 30 minute nap) after a major meltdown (over the fact that he was asked to clean up his toys), he surprised me. After an evening of acting like a typical two-year-old, Eli demonstrated just how sweet he can be. We were watching an old sitcom on TV and snuggling on the couch (I love that he loves to snuggle!). A commercial came on for St. Jude Children's Hospital. The tear-jerking type that I hate to watch. And Eli stared. Then he looked at me, and said, "Oma, they're sick. Those kids are really, really sick. A lot."

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Not many nights after that, I was cleaning while Patrick and Eli played in the living room. I heard Patrick tell Eli to go start getting ready for bed. Patrick assured Eli that he "would be there in just a minute to help." We usually give Eli a head start, as Eli can undress without help. In less than 2 minutes, Patrick began walking toward Eli's room, as Eli suddenly bounded down the hallway. Eli was completed changed into his pajamas.  Patrick asked if I helped him, and Eli &I both confirmed that, no, I hadn't. Upon further investigation, we found out that our 2.5 year old had independently taken off his shoes, socks, and school clothes. He had placed his shoes in their bin & his dirty clothes in the laundry room. He found his own pull-ups (we still use them at night/for naps), and put one on. Then, he dug out his favorite footie-pajamas, put them on & zipped himself up.  LOL!  We are still wondering how he did it so quickly!

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This morning, as I was driving Eli to his grandparents' house (they are watching him today, since it is so close to Christmas), we had a math discussion that tickled my math teacher bones. Patrick had made us some peanut-butter bananas (literally - bananas sliced in half & stuffed w the gooey goodness of peanut butter). He'd made 4 pieces.  Eli saw the container going into the car and started begging for one. NOT happening in my clean car!  But, I did tell him that I would save him 2 pieces. He got happy. I ate a piece. Eli's running commentary paused to tell me, "Hey! you ate-d one of your bananas. You only get one more, because that's TWO pieces. And then I get two pieces!" I love it when he adds and subtracts ; ).

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Eli surprised us the other day by coming home and reciting half of the "Brown Bear, Brown Bear" story his teachers had read to the class.  We were quickly able to snap a video of him reciting as much as he could remember. He's so cute, I can hardly stand it : ). We might have to invest in this particular book!

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Eli recently went to the live nativity at our church. He was happy to see Santa at first, but then he looked around and said "ALL my FRIENDS are here!!!" He proceeded to call his friends by name and raced to join them. He had a blast playing with his friends, drinking hot apple cider, and going outside to see the nativity and listen to the story of Christmas. He did eventually sit in Santa's lap, but that's one custom that he is not particularly fond of. I am still hoping to get a picture of him smiling in Santa's lap....

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Yesterday, Eli, Patrick, and I decided to build Christmas sculptures with Eli's Legos. We managed Santa's sleigh, a ton of candy canes, and a reindeer. Upon building the reindeer, Patrick looked at it and said, "It's missing something." Then, he added a red block for the reindeer's nose. I looked at it, and said, "It's missing something else." I placed a few brown blocks on the ground, beneath the reindeer's tail. Patrick asked, "What is that supposed to be?" Eli replied, "That's the poop, Appa! That's the reindeer poop!"  Yeah, I know.  Not very classy of me : ). Funny though - and Eli got a kick out of it!

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Also yesterday, as we were leaving Eli's school, his teacher stopped us, and let us know that one of the children left a small goodie bag for each of the other kids. Since Eli won't be back at school until January, his teacher wanted to make sure we got one. Eli left school, clutching his little gift bag (unopened) and said "Oma, I got a PRESENT!  From Scarlett!  Oh, I so happy!  A PRESENT!  For me! For Eli! It's so pretty!..."  You get the idea. This went on constantly for at least 30 minutes. Since he didn't open it until later that night, he kept bringing it up intermittently for almost 2 more hours. It's so funny...even at two, he is beginning to value the thought of a gift : ). I sincerely hope that this continues!!  I did tell him that for the last day of Christmas (the 25th) all of his family members were getting presents for him and for each other. It absolutely blew his mind. We had shocked, open-mouthed silence for several minutes. Even though we'd told him several times before, I don't think it truly sunk in until that very moment.   His first response was "WHY?"  I explained that we give each other presents on Jesus' birthday, to celebrate the gifts that Jesus gave us. He was floored by that. He asked about the presents from Jesus, and I reminded him that we light candles on our Advent wreath to celebrate them. He replied, "Oh! Cadnel (this is how he says 'candle') hope, cadnel pea ('peace'), cadnel jo-wie ('joy').  I don't think he really understands. I now wonder if he thinks that the actual candles are from Jesus rather than the abstract feelings...!
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One last little blurb for today. We were out looking, in a store, when Eli starting getting excited about a toy he saw. I walked him over to it, and asked him what he wanted the toy for (it was a little baby toy). He said, "I want to get it. That's for mine cousin Emma. She like it, Oma!"  He loves hearing from Uncle Lee, Aunt Miyu, and seeing pictures of Emma : ).

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