Monday, November 7, 2011

So good, yet so bad

I've come to realize that Jacob is at opposing ends of the spectrum when it comes to his behavior.  Sometimes he is so cool, so funny, and so sweet.  And yet when he's not, watch out.  He's just an intense kid, and as I've been saying about him for ages, when he knows what he wants, he's determined to do it.  Tonight I finished folding a giant basket of his laundry that barely fit in the washing machine...and it was only from the past week.  Between potty training accidents and his incessant desire to change his outfit for whoever he wants to be (athlete of a certain sport, superhero and cowboy all have different outfits, after all), he's going through an obscene amount of clothing.  I'm having a hard time convincing him to leave his drawer of summer clothes alone, so he's frequently running around in shorts despite the cool temps outside.  And if you try to prevent him from changing at all...wooo boy...watch out.  We've had some battles over it.  On one hand this may be a pick-your-battles situation, but at the same time, I don't want him constantly pulling out clothes (his winter clothes are a bit more limited at this point--by design, with Christmas coming and a bunch of 4T reserves waiting in the wings) and creating more laundry or leaving a trail of discarded clothes all over the house.  It's crazy.  I keep telling him to use his imagination, but no such luck so far.  But seriously, need we have battles over that, or getting dressed every morning, or going to bed every night, or picking him up at daycare?  They say that kids need routine, but despite having a pretty basic one, he's still not down with it.  I guess that goes along with my complaint about him not learning from his mistakes.  Past experiences apparently have little impact.

The battles are brutal, though--lots of crying, lots of body positioning so we can't move him, lots of yelling (even though I'm trying to cut that down--sometimes I have no choice), and they're just exhausting all around.  But when he's being a good boy?  He can be so darn cute.  Smiles, laughs, funny things that he says and does...so awesome.  Sometimes we have these moments where he's playing nicely or talking coherently (sometimes he's a bit off in fantasy land), and it's like, "Ok, this is how it's supposed to be."  But then he takes the fun a little too far and inadvertently injures someone (himself included), and we're back to just trying to maintain order.  He's got a lot of energy and he's very determined.  Those traits will serve him well someday, but right now they're definitely challenging.

However, I feel like once in a while I see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I see an awesome little boy that I want to hang out with and can't wait to see grow up to be a pretty cool kid.  And that's more than I might have said a few weeks ago.  Small steps...

So, over the weekend I took advantage of Jacob's nap and Craig's player appearance to shampoo our carpets on our main floor (living room, dining room, stairs).  I bought a Bissell ProHeat 2X when they were on sale at Lowe's and I could get 5% more off with my credit card there.  I figured that with a house full of light carpeting and a boy that sometimes has trouble getting to the potty, it probably wasn't the worst investment I could make.  The carpets were looking pretty gross and one professional cleaning would cost nearly that much so it was worth a shot.  Hard to say for sure, but I think it worked relatively well.  Considering I was battling at least a year and a half of dirt and stains, it did well.  The water I emptied out of the tank was gross, so I know it at least did some good!  Because of the time the rugs take to dry, it's not going to be a frequent thing (maybe twice a year, with spot cleaning more frequently as needed), because I have a hard enough time vacuuming, let alone doing something where the rugs are damp for a few hours. 

The reason I did it Saturday was because we were headed out that night.  We took a trip to Syracuse (along with a Knighthawks player) because Craig had two players (the other was local) signing autographs at the Amerks-Crunch game.  It was weird being part of the Crunch's production, but Craig is trying to expand the fan base out to Central New York, and the response was pretty awesome, actually.  Jacob spent most of the evening running around like a maniac.  The guys were set up in an area of the arena called Memorial Hall.  Like the arena in Rochester, the Syracuse arena is also a War Memorial.  Memorial Hall had flags and murals, as well as a bunch of mannequins dressed as various war's soldiers and cases of war artifacts.  Jacob just loved running in the wide open space.  At one point he was even joined by the little boy of the Crunch goalie, who was beyond adorable.  That little boy was younger and was totally doing whatever Jacob did.  His mom, a tall Finnish brunette in very high heels, stood by watching, too.  I guess Jacob just needed to get his run on, so it worked out well.  Here are a couple pictures:

I thought this picture was sort of oddly cool.  I was playing around with my camera settings, and happened to snap this blurry picture of Jacob running around.  You can just see his ghostly image at the top of the circle design in the floor.  Considering that's about all I saw most of the night, I thought it was appropriate.
It was a fun night and Jacob fell asleep late on the way home.  I was hoping for a sleep-in because of the time change, but no such luck.  He was up bright and early.  He did, however, take a three hour nap in the afternoon.  He was nearly perfect at church since I let him bring a couple Star Wars figures and one of Craig's old G.I. Joe's, and it kept him occupied the whole time.  Score!  But that must have  tired him out!  I did some yardwork thanks to the great weather (while the Bills were stinking it up on TV) and pulled out crazy roots from these evil weed/perennial plants in our backyard.  They'll be back with a vengeance, but I tried.

Now on to another busy week.  Tomorrow is Election Day, which means a trip to Buffalo, plus the birth of my new nephew out in Oregon!  Half day on Wednesday, and a vacation day for me on Friday so I can head downstate for my friend's baby shower.  My weekend is still up in the air, though I may spend most of it away.  We'll see.  The whole scenario is a little crazy, but I'll make it work--if not with one friend, then with another.  Then we have one less crazy week (I think) and then it's thanksgiving week...and the week after that I head out to Portland (solo!) to meet my new little nephew and hang out with my brother and his family.  And then it's Christmas time, and we know how fast that goes.  So yeah, 2012 will be here before we know it.  Crazy.  Hold on tight...

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