I don’t want to speak too soon and jinx us, but it seems like maybe you’re easing out of the second-half-of-the-year period of disequilibrium. You still have your evening energy surges sometimes, but keeping busy during the day and having soccer two nights a week seems to be helping you get balanced out. I’ve found myself looking forward to our Tuesdays and Thursdays when you’re home, because you’re mostly a fun guy.
The drives to and from Kinderfarm are starting to wear on me, and we haven’t even dealt with any bad weather yet. It will be nice next year when you and Miles are in the same school. You’re already making plans about how you’ll walk home from school together. It may take me a while to get used to that idea, and besides, I like picking you guys up from school. It’s the best part of my day when I see one of you kids round a corner and break into a big smile, cheerful from a good school day but happy to see me.
I asked you the other day who your best school friends are, and you mentioned Liam, Jackson, and Chase. I asked if you were friends with any of the girls in the class, and you said, “Pretty much the only girl I like is you.” That’s not going to last, but I like being your main lady for the time being. I’ve always emphasized that you kids can marry whomever makes you happy, male or female, and you’ve decided on Miles. I guess I should have been more specific. On the other hand, today you were happy when I told you it’s the day Miles has his after-school class. When I asked you why, you said, “So I’ll have more time without Miles bugging me.” You two are best frenemies for sure.
We’ve had some good adventures lately, including our annual apple-picking outing and a trip to Nana and Papa’s farm. Though the weather has been hot and humid this week, we lucked into a gorgeous Saturday for our farm trip. You had a great time jumping on hay bales, running up and down the the squishy silage pile, and riding on Papa’s 4-wheeler. You bragged to me about he let you push buttons and steer. I remember my Pop-Pop used to let my cousins and me drive his tractor, though I mainly stuck to steering. My cousin Debi bragged about Pop-Pop letting her use the clutch, and it reminded me so much of your pride in button-pushing. I don’t know what buttons do on a 4-wheeler, but you were psyched to be in charge of them.
You are, most of the time, a really kind and sweet guy. You know just when to come and give me a hug and tell me you love me, and Callum thinks you’re about the greatest person ever. He calls you “Toto” (also his word for tomato, but that’s neither here nor there). He dreams about you, and more than once I’ve heard him say “Toto” in his sleep. We stayed in a hotel the night before we spent the day at Nana and Papa’s, and when he looked over and found you sleeping in the same room as him, he squealed with happiness. You are mostly kind and patient with him, though you could still learn a bit more about prioritizing. This morning he grabbed one of the two blankets you had, and rather than letting him have one and using the other, you got into a tug-of-war with him. You’re right—he shouldn’t grab things away from you. But on the other hand, you need to learn that sometimes it’s a lot easier for everybody if you learn to drop the small things.
We’re taking a mini-vacation to St. Louis in a couple of weeks, and I hope it’s a fun family getaway. We’re taking you to the City Museum, which I hear is intense and awe-inspiring and perfect for scrabbly little people like you. I also hope to hit the zoo and the Botanical Gardens, and it looks like there are a lot of good places to see and eat in the neighborhood where we’re staying. It will be a somewhat long ride in the car, but hopefully some audio books will keep you happy. It will be nice when you can read well enough to entertain yourself with books, but in the meantime, your dad and I have enjoyed listening to some Roald Dahl and Judy Blume.
You seem to be enjoying school at Kinderfarm so far. You’re currently working on a nursery rhyme unit, and it was fun for you to play the cow in a reenactment of “Hey, Diddle Diddle.” You’ve been reciting that rhyme frequently around the house the last few days.
Your current favorites: Odd Squad, Wild Kratts, waffles, lemonade, the Percy Jackson book your dad is reading to you at bedtime, playing memory games, and jumping on furniture. We try to keep that last one to a minimum, so it was pretty exciting when you got to jump on the hotel bed.
You’re a fun, energetic, and enthusiastic little guy. I truly hope the behavior challenges we’ve dealt with the last half-year are waning, and we can get back to enjoying the cheerful, fun person I know you are. Everybody has a better time when nobody’s yelling. I think we can do it.