Joys in Parenting

We have older-ish children and one of our most beloved past times as parents, is the joy of messing with them. Yes, we feel it is a necessary aspect of our parenting in payment for the things they did to us in their infancy and toddler, three-nager and preschool and now elementary years of life. It’s especially fun when you are aware of the things that bug your kids.

For example, take Test Subject Number One:


Test Subject #1
Test Subject #1

He’s a handsome guy, isn’t he? Yes and he usually has an excellent sense of humor. He has now reached the age where he gets jokes. That’s a fun age. In fact we have to be careful what jokes we tell to one another as parents because he now gets them too. Ahem.

Test Subject #1 greatly enjoys knowing all the things. He wants to know what we are going to do hour-by-hour, day-by-day. In fact, he’d appreciate a written schedule. Once submitted, he’d also probably negotiate each item on said schedule with well-thought rationales of why said items should or should not occur in their designated slots.

Due to this personality trait, we enjoy not telling him anything. In fact, sometimes we just tell him to get in the car, be sure he has shoes on and a coat. We don’t tell him where we are going. We don’t tell him how long we will be there. We refuse to tell him if any of his friends will be wherever we are going. And we even won’t tell him how long it’ll take to get there. GASP!


We just tell him to enjoy being present with your people and you’ll see.

Then he asks if he will be receiving anything during this mystery outing; food, toys, games, will there be candy or soda?

We just shrug our shoulders….”dunno buddy! You’ll just have to wait and see.”

Test Subject #1 hates waiting and seeing. It’s like death to him.

And we relish every second of it.

Oh sure, he’ll try to get you to drop a hint. He’ll try to find out by barraging you with questions. He’ll sigh, stomp his foot, talk in a baby voice in the third person. And we just smile.

Man guys. Being a parent is so fun. Sometimes, I envision the times that he got kicked out of the church nursery for biting kids as a one-year old or the times that he screamed because he didn’t want to go to sleep for the night,…and you know, I feel just a little bit better.

Test Subject #2 however, does not get the jokes yet. In fact, if he tries to tell you a knock-knock joke, best divert his attention with something shiny STAT!

Test Subject #2
Test Subject #2

However, if you have some slap-stick or bodily humor up your sleeve; this guy is your man. He is the kid who really gave us the most passion for messing with our kids. You see he was the toughest in the years of basically birth to age 5. Not much longer and the messing with can begin. I’m pumped. I have such an arsenal….


Test Subject #3 will probably be way less fun. It’s too early to tell really. And so far she’s pretty perfect. Maybe she just won’t be fun to mess with?

Test Subject #3
Test Subject #3

**This post is called “sarcasm”. If you can’t take a joke maybe your parents should have messed with you a little more in your childhood. Or maybe you’re a middle-kid. Either way, move along.

The Funny Girl

One of the best parts of being a parent of small children is being able to recount the hilarity that comes with said territory (and not really embarrass them). I haven’t told perhaps any Cecelia stories here on my blog. Perhaps we are just now getting to the truly funny stuff though?

Cecelia is now two and a half. She melts our hearts on a regular basis with her friendliness, her warmth, her sing-song way of talking and walking and her general joyfulness. She loves her brothers SO much and they feel the same way about her. She and her eldest brother, Cooper, have a loving relationship probably typical of a really older brother (7 years her senior). He picks her up, holds her, dances with her in his arms; he loves to push her in the swings or help her ride her bike. He reads stories to her, helps her and is 100% on her side, loyal to her every whim. Chase on the other hand? He and she have a bit of a different relationship.

Chase is only 3 years older than Cecelia. While it’s a good amount of space between them, it’s also close enough that they enjoy playing with one another a lot more than she and Cooper (who are interested in totally opposite things). Chase will sometimes be the helpful, loving brother who gets something out of reach for Cecelia or plays make believe with her (especially house/kitchen etc). However, he GREATLY delights in lording things over her. There is a little too much joy in his face when he sees her doing something wrong/out of place. He will happily snatch something away from her, play keep-away with her most beloved blanket or baby doll, and generally tease/torment her according to how he’s feeling that day. And while she screams and fusses at him, he just smiles at her impishly.

I’m still surprised that she even wants to play with him or is happy to see him after the way he treats her. But each day it’s Chase she asks me about. It’s Chase she say’s goodbye to over and over and over when we drop him off for school. It’s Chase she can’t wait to see when we go to pick the boys up from school and it’s Chase she begs to play with her once the boys are home.

Lately though, she’s putting together much more complicated, full sentences. She’s able to express herself not just in action but also in word; and Chase is getting an earful. When we were in Iowa visiting our friends recently, we had spent a full morning playing at a splash park and having a picnic. A storm started to move in and it was getting late in the afternoon, so we decided to head back to the lake house. We changed the kids clothes and loaded them up in the car to head back. As we were driving Chase (who sits in the way back all by himself for many reasons), began making really annoying sounds with his mouth. They got pretty loud and obnoxious and just as I was about to tell him to stop the shenanigans, Cecelia, who had up to this point been quietly sucking her fingers and cuddling her blanket, pushed her hand out flat as if to show a sign for stop and exclaimed, “Stop! Stop it Chasey! I am so tired, I’m sleeping!”.

Jeremy and I stifled hysteric laughter. We looked back at Cecelia and she had again resumed her previous position. And Chase? He was actually quiet!

Our funny Cecelia in her most favorite jammies
Our funny Cecelia in her most favorite jammies with her friend, Nora