Summer is almost here. You are such a fun and active little guy, you’re just loving all the opportunities to be outside. Sometimes you have more energy for outdoorsiness than I do, but your dad picks up the slack. You guys go out to the playground just about every pleasant evening, and you’ve made all kinds of neighborhood friends. You’ve been helping me garden a lot too. You’re even up for helping with outdoor chores now and then.
Photo by Beth Clarke
You’re almost done with your first year (slightly over half-year, actually) of preschool. We’re going to miss Willowwind for sure, but not enough to send you there all day, since they’re cutting their half-day program. It just doesn’t make sense for our family, since we don’t need the child-care hours. Our purpose for sending you to preschool was to help you learn about the structure of school, following rules, responding appropriately to authority figures, and to make new friends. You’ve done all of those very well, and I’m sure you’ll do great at the Hoover half-day preschool too.
Photo by Denny
You have so much energy and interest in a wide variety of activities. Last weekend, we stayed home, but we did a lot of different things with different combinations of family members. I was thinking over all the things we did, and I realized that you took part in every single outing and adventure.
1. You and Callum and I went to Daylight Donuts to pick up some breakfast for the gang while Miles and your dad slept in.
2. You and Miles and I went to the Farmers Market while your dad and Callum stayed home.
3. You and I gardened while the other guys stayed inside.
4. You and Miles and your dad went to the playground while Callum and I stayed in.
I think there was more, but I can’t remember it all right now. Regardless, my point is that you love to be on the go, in the middle of the action. I think you’re big enough to really enjoy the fun things summer will bring, so we’ll have a good time. You having swimming lessons coming up, and trips to the Flavor Ice stand and the frozen yogurt shop, and library and museum visits, and probably a lot of other things.
A couple of days ago, as we were walking home from school, you suggested that we have a picnic because you’d never been on one. That can’t be right, though I can’t think of a specific picnic you’ve been on, so you may well be correct. We gathered up some food and a blanket and headed out to the park.
You’re good for me, Tobin. I can get very comfortable in routines, and if I didn’t have someone around to keep me primed for new experiences, I could probably do the same things every day. I admit my initial response to your picnic idea was to think, “Ugh, that sounds like a lot of work just to eat the same things sitting on the ground that we’d eat at our nice table.” But I like to say yes when the request is reasonable, so we did it. You ate more fruit than usual, and we saw some nice birds.
This is not to say there’s not value in routines. We have some favorites, like going to Panera for lunch once a week or so. You’re one of the best lunch buddies I could have. Usually when people ask me if I miss working, my response is that I miss going out to lunch with coworkers. That’s true—sometimes I wish I could eat Indian food with grownups. But you often have funny things to say, and I like sharing my lunches with you. I don’t get a lot of lamb vindaloo these days, but bagels are pretty good too. I do wish you’d realize you need the bathroom at a time other than right when I set the food on our table, but mostly we have a pretty good thing going.
Your current favorites: Scooby Doo on Netflix, Legos, cinnamon crunch bagels with hazelnut cream cheese (aka the dessertiest lunch ever), playdates with friends (especially Ben, Hazel, and Jensen), helping in the garden, and putting on your own shoes. You are up to probably 65% in getting them on the right feet, even.
Have a great month, my little adventure boy. I promise I’ll push myself to say yes to your crazy ideas as much as I safely can.