A lot of people ask me (and quite frequently), “How do you keep going and go out to so many places with T all of the time?!” My standard response to that usually is something like, “We have to leave the house by 10 a.m. daily otherwise T will destroy it,” or, “If you had as active of a kid as I do, then you would understand.” But the truth is that we still leave room in our days for a decent deal of down-time around the house and neighborhood. OK, a lot. After all, C didn’t spend all that time on the front yard in vain, nor can we keep go-go-going all the time either (no, not even T).
So other than watch gobs of TV, what is it around here that we did to pass the time on those slower summer days?
For starters, we have great neighbors. T’s “Auntie K” lives next door, and he often goes over there to help walk the cat, water plants, or just hang out. Yes, I said walk the cat. It’s awesome and something that this particular kitty really appreciates having been a former stray that Auntie K took indoors and off the street years ago. For many years now, T’s been a great kitty sitter and neighbor and friend to Auntie K (and she to him and all of us).
We also have other neighbors who just stop by to say hi or to play whenever the mood strikes. T enjoys these visits as well, as do we. Very much.
Along with having great neighbors, we have a great group of friends here in Long Beach. Since they don’t live too far away we’re able to get together and hang out on special occasions or for no reason at all. And now that the front yard’s complete we’ve been able to entertain more often and on shorter notice. The visits less-planned always seem to be the best of the bunch, too.
And all entertaining calls for good food, right? Lucky for all of us, C is inspired in many creative ways. Whether having seen a late-night re-run of Jacques Pepin or just having glimpsed what’s on hand in the leftover department, C always manages to keep us well-fed and friends somewhat impressed with the things he comes up with, however culinary and/or casual the dish. Some of our eats also are starting to come from our front yard garden – yum!
How do I get inspired in the kitchen, other than when I’m baking, you ask? Yep, a cereal box. Hey, it was something T requested for breakfast one summer morning, and it was most definitely something I was more than happy to do for him (and something I knew I couldn’t screw up too badly either!).
Hmm, what else do we do for fun? Oh yeah, we play! Of course we play. We play imaginative games, do random crafts, and build LEGOs. T loves creating whenever he gets the chance, and I love that most of it is all T’s ideas. It’s not because I’m not that much for arts and crafts (because I’m not), but it’s because I want these moments to be him-spired with only assistance as-requested from C or myself. It’s through that sort of independent play that T will become more independent himself and in turn, more self-confident and able to take on more and more skills and tasks as he learns, grows, and matures. These free-play times are also a space where he can set the rules and run the show (within reason, of course… keep those LEGOs out of the walkway, T!).
But sometimes there’s more than just fun and games to be had around the house; sometimes the doctor calls, and unfortunately, they aren’t house calls. Now that T is on the school calendar, I’ve tried to schedule a great deal of his doctor’s appointments during the last couple of months while he’s been on summer break. With that, T made his first visits to the eye doctor and dermatologist (he has my fair skin and hair, and a few rogue moles have appeared), and he had his routine check-up and cleaning with the dentist. The great news is all check-ups checked out. Happy summer indeed!
Of course, no time around the house is complete without a healthy dose of vegging out. That might mean bad TV, a beer on the front porch (and in a baby pool for extra points), and/or a nap on the couch. Cheers, and good night!
Enjoy these last days of summer 2013, RMT’ers. I know many kids have already returned to a new school year, and T goes back to school two weeks from today. Where did the lazy days of summer go?! However long, short, busy, and or relaxing your time together was, I hope you all had a wonderful summer break! I will be taking some time off here at RMT to lap up every last drop of summer break… see you after Labor Day!