Sunday, 27 March 2011

Today, an expert hair-washer. Tomorrow, shuttle pilot.


Bath time it still a struggle when it comes to the end. Jack loves playing in the bath but his extreme dislike for water on his face or in his ears makes washing his hair very traumatic.

We wash Jack's hair at the end Sunday bath time because usually by the time we've got all the shampoo out he's fed up, crying and never wants to have a bath again. We've tried lots of different ways to keep the water off his face from investing in special pouring cups to holding a flannel just beneath his hair line. Nothing has really worked with any lasting success. We've settled to lying him back and letting him control how far his head goes into the water while Helen hand-scoops water over the rest and I stand-by with a rag to wipe away any uncontainable drips.

Tonight Jack asked about the washing of his hair very early on. I normally hate it when he does this because it somehow brings down the whole mood of bath, but I answered his questions honestly all the same.
Yes tonight we're washing your hair.
OK but I don't want to get any water in my face.
I know, we'll do it like we normally do. That usually works well enough.
Because I don't like water in my face. 
I know.
So I'm going to wash my hair today.
Are you?
Yeah... and with that he proceeded to lean back and dip his head in the water. He go about a third, starting from the back, of his hair wet. 
Good work. I was a little stunned but not entirely surprised. He's tried this tactic before, he just wanted to get out of having to wash his hair. This time, by having actually got his hair we, he'd taken it a little further than he had in the past.
Is my hair washed now?
It's not quite wet enough yet and we still need to shampoo.
OK. he tried again this time getting about half way. We carried on like this for a few minutes. Jack even started pouring the water over his head, and subsequently his face, over and over again. He shampooed, then then he rinsed...

Helen and I have always said that Jack cannot be coaxed or eased into anything. He'll either do it or he won't. When it came to toilet training we tried all sorts of techniques and tactics but Jack simply wouldn't have it. Then one day he came into our room and said he needed the toilet, and that was it. Toilet trained, 100%. He's developed quite a reputation for just waking up one day educated and practiced in a skill or subject. He did the same with walking and pretty much every other skill he's acquired over the years.

Shortly after he was finished washing his hair, because he'd done it so early on, it came time to wash the rest of his body. He normally does this part himself and has done for quite a while. So I offered him the soap which he took graciously saying I'll do it. I'm an expert washer now. I wash my own hair.

We let him wrap his hair up 'like Mommy does' to mark the occasion.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Shoe Tying

I tied my shoe by myself. You tied your own shoes?
Yeah. See look I tied my shoe real good. I can't tied them with loops like you can.
Apparently whilst at school his laces came untied and he figured he'd resolve the problem himself. Jack learns a lot simply by observing others. I've noticed how intently he watches when his shoes are tied and figured he'd give it a go himself sooner or later.

It was truly a work of art, so I took a picture.

I remember when I was learning to tie shoes. I carried around one of my mom's sneakers for almost two weeks so I could practice. My first few attempts were slightly more spherical than this but just as... tied.

For those of you interested. It took me 134 seconds to untie, and I'm pretty amazing at untying difficult knots.

Sunday, 20 March 2011



On Tuesday Jack was told that he was going to be spending the day with his favorite person. Izzy? No. Amber-leigh? No. Oh yeah, Nanny.

Today, we had a visit. Jack has been looking forward to it all week. Last night he got out of bed to let me know just how excited he was that Izzy was coming to visit him. It's been over two months since Jack has seen anything more than a photo of Isabelle. He's misses her terribly.

Izzy's been living at the children's hospital since Christmas. About 3 weeks ago she was sent home as an outpatient but with no immune system she's been more or less kept isolated in her house.

It was like no time had passed at all. They chatted briefly and then Jack set to taking her on a tour of his toys and new play room. They played together and watched Cinderella for nearly 2 hours before she clearly didn't have the energy to carry on.

Within minutes of her leaving Jack started to miss her. Just as well he's going to her house tomorrow.
We get asked about Izzy from time to time. The kids at school ask their parents about Izzy and their parents know that we speak to Izzy's parents more than anyone else, so they ask us. She's a sweet and friendly little girl so all the kids miss her dearly.

She's going back into hospital next week for the the next couple of months and during that time will be in isolation for 5 weeks... Hopefully after this will be the end if it all and Izzy being well will be a much more permanent thing. Get well soon Izzy we love you.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

The Confession.


I was picking up Jack from nursery.
I was speaking to one of the carers, getting the skinny on Jack's activities and such for that day. Apparently Jack had got himself very worked up thinking that he was going to be in a lot of trouble with us for a minor accident that he'd had. So he'd asked her to explain the situation before I got anywhere near him... We were just finished up when Jack interrupted.

Daddy can we go to there? He pointed to a pamphlet stapled to their bulletin board.
I took a quick look at the pamphlet cover. No hun I don't even know where that is.
But it's a fun place look. I want to go there another day.
It could be anywhere Jack.
"It's probably in America somewhere." the carer said trying to help. She had no idea of how little she was helping. In an attempt to distract Jack from dragging me into another prolonged conversation about our next trip to America I offered more information about the pamphlet.
It's not a pamphlet for a play place Jack. The picture is just the cover.
What is it for then?
I took a quick look. Abused children.
I'm one of those, I'm an abused child. It would seem that today I was destined to get dragged into a prolonged conversation with somebody about something.

Something about this reminded me of my Sister telling me about once having to forcibly remove her misbehaving daughter from a church session. This wouldn't have been so bad if her daughter hadn't been screaming "MOMMY DON'T HIT ME!" on the way out.

Kids eh?

Sunday, 13 March 2011

The Play Room


I came home from an unusually long day at school to find a very excited Jack. As soon as I stepped in the house I was met with Daddy, you are not gonna believe this, followed a tour of a room of the house that I was already pretty familiar with. After the tour we settled down on the couch, his couch, and watched a DVD.

The play room has been 2 years in the making. Years before Jack was born we had our garage converted into an office. Then, for reasons I can no long remember, we stopped using it pretty much all together. Helen used it for work for a while but even she preferred not to. Soon the room gathered all of the house junk and became so stuffed full that you couldn't even open the door.

Since Jack was about two we've been talking about changing it into a play room. But the ominous task of clearing out all of that stuff was just too much. But, with Helen's recent accrual of free time she's gradually whittled away and achieved a result, a room he can call his own... well another room.

Jack is thrilled.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Halfway Between and Run and Walk.

A new game has been created called Chase and Seek. As you might imagine it's a combination of Chase and Hide and Seek. Basically one tries to hide whilst being perused by the other.

My only problem with this game is there seem to be a lot of rules and rule changes in this game. Sometimes you can't go upstairs, sometimes you can't hide in certain places. The one rule that's stayed pretty constant is there's no running on the stairs. When you go up or down the stairs you're to walk.

So we were debuting the game the other day. We ran, and we hid and each time we got to the stairs.
No running on the stairs Daddy.

and we run and hide etc...
You don't run on the stairs Daddy.
I know, I'm not.

and more running and hiding.
Don't run on the stairs!
I'm not... I glanced behind and saw that he was much closer than he ought to have been, and he was gaining on me. You're running. No running on the stairs Jack.
 I'm not running... I'm speed walking.

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Once Bitten.

Just something I remembered.

We were getting ready for bed. I'd been sent downstairs to retrieve Dylan whom we'd forgotten to bring up.
Be careful Daddy because Dylan is a bit grouchy today.
I was careful, I grabbed Dylan by the scruff of his neck and hauled him upstairs.
After the bedtime story we had our goodnight hugs. Jack took extra long hugging Mommy so I hugged Dylan.
No Daddy, Dylan is really grouchy today.
He seems OK to me.
He's not, he's grouchy, he doesn't want to be cuddled.
Defiantly I gave Dylan a big hug.
...Did he just bite me?
I told you he was grouchy. He didn't like the cuddle. I put Dylan down and cradled my hand. Jack scooped up Dylan and gave him a light scolding but mostly in the form of a cuddle. I did tell you he was grouchy today.
Yes, you did warn me.