Taking The Next Step


I feel like I need to circle the square on our calendar that designates this past Friday in red magic marker, because MILESTONE.  It’s a milestone that I’m excited about… and then I sat down on Friday night and bawled like a woman in the throes of horrible PMS who has been denied access to chocolate and salt.

Thing 2 took three steps on Friday night, and he did this three times.  So that would be nine steps altogether on Friday, because even I can do that math without my fingers needing to get involved.

On Saturday, he walked three more steps.  And then he walked four steps after that.

And I don’t think that anyone is going to understand this, unless they ended up with a surprise baby, like we did, and that surprise baby came after thinking that there would be only one child in the house forever.

When the boy walked, we were excited, but it was also heartbreaking.  At that time, Hubs and I thought he’d be our only child, and walking signified the end of his babyhood.  When he lost his first tooth, it was a monumental moment full of happiness and talk of the Tooth Fairy, but Hubs and I suspected that there would never be another FIRST lost tooth in our house again.

And then God handed us Thing 2 out of the clear blue sky.  So the boy’s first tooth falling out won’t be the only FIRST lost tooth at our house; Thing 2 will lose one, as well.

But this weekend, when he took his steps, Hubs and the boy and I cheered him on.  We clapped like little girls at a One Direction concert.  And then when I rocked that baby to sleep on Friday night, I burst into tears, because this is it.  Thing 2 is going to be REALLY walking in the next little bit here, and then THAT will be the end of all the baby at our house.  A walking Thing 2 will mean that our last baby has become a toddler, and everyone knows that toddlers eventually learn to pee in the big boy potty, and then the next day they tell you that they need a bunch of crafting supplies for their science fair display boards.

I held Thing 2 on Friday night.  He was sound asleep, nestled against me.  He smelled like baby lotion and love and a little bit of leftover applesauce.  And I cried and cried, because MY WORD!  Our baby is on the brink of being a walker, which is going to catapult him out of the baby stage and into the big boy stage.

My heart could barely take it all in.

So THE END on all the sappiness tonight.  Otherwise, I’ll need to go sit in my closet, rocking back and forth as I experience an Ugly Cry, and ain’t nobody got time for that.

Our weekend was wonderful.

On Friday evening, amidst all the new walking, we had Tyler and Heather and their little peanut, Vivian, over for dinner.  Vivian is still very tiny, as she’s just over two months old.  We all took turns holding her and loving on her and telling her what a beautiful little girl she is with her enormous blue eyes.  And then we had some grilled chicken and salad, and a loaf of crusty bread that I thought someone had stuck figs on, even though the bakery package made no mention of there being figs in the dough.

As it turned out, I can’t tell a fig from a giant chunk of roasted garlic, so all was well.

Apparently, garlic bread has… well… GARLIC in it.  And not figs.

After our company left on Friday night, the boy called Mam and Pa and invited himself over to spend the night with them.  Mam and Pa never turn down the boy, so he packed a bag full of clean clothes that he had no intention of ever putting on, and out the door he went.

Hubs was gone all day on Saturday, which left Thing 2 and his mama home alone, until I got the brilliant idea to call the nanny over.  I needed to get some chores done, with a list that started with a shower and ended with vacuum, mop, dust, and basically dig the house out of meth-lab-status. 

The nanny (who is also known as our eight-year-old niece, Miss A) was at our house approximately 90 seconds after I called her.  I’m not saying that she’s a super hero with super powers, but not even Wonder Woman can commute that quickly.

Miss A and Thing 2 did some serious playing, while I did some serious scrubbing.

The nanny even took over lunch duties at our house, so that I could wipe down a bathroom and bring us up to OSHA-approved code.  The health department tends to frown at mold in the toilets.

For the record?  I flat-out ADORED Miss A’s pants, and I must’ve complimented her on them a hundred different times.  Grammy had bought them for the nanny, while her parents were gone this weekend at  her brother’s hockey game.  She told me, “I feel really pretty in them, but I know  my mom isn’t going to like them one bit, because she hates neon!”

Hmm.  I happen to know for a fact that Miss A’s mama was a teenager in the neon-era of the late ’80s.  How can her heart NOT thump a little faster when hot pink pants are on sale?  It would be like saying, “I just don’t enjoy the SIDE PONYTAIL.”

After an entire morning spent exhausting all of the toys in our house, Miss A pulled out the big cardboard box that I’d just unloaded a fresh supply of Pampers out of.  Apparently, Thing 2 is exactly like every other child on this great earth, who thinks that a plain old box trumps a $100 scooter toy that lights up and plays the theme song from The Lone Ranger.

I think Miss A pushed Thing 2 around our house in that box for seventy-two miles.

And then she sat down on our floor and said, “Do you know what?  Thing 2 is a workout!  People wouldn’t even need to go to the gym if they just came over here and pushed him all day in that diaper box!”

Preach it, Sister.  It’s why I go to bed every night at 8:00, and why my insurance claims suddenly include CHIROPRACTOR VISITS, and why my shoulder aches like I’m a 92-year-old woman with gout.

Miss A was here for a considerable amount of time on Saturday morning, and I knocked out some chores.

And then that little baby passed out cold and slept for THREE ENTIRE HOURS.  He may have whispered to me, “Ma?  Miss A is a workout, and I don’t even need to go to the gym after playing with her all morning.  I’m spent!”

Thank you, Miss A, for wearing that child out like you did.

This morning, we had church, and the sermon was tailor-fit for me.  I know that Pastor John was preaching to a congregation full of people, but his words were flaming arrows aimed right at my heart, and I think I have some work to do this week.

Later today, we went to a surprise 13th birthday party, because our adorable friend, McKinley was becoming a (Gasp!) teenager.

Hubs and McKinley’s dad, Paul, grew up together as best friends, and I’m rather certain that they probably caused more trouble than Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid did.  It’s amazing that their children have turned out okay.

When everyone was ready, Paul rang the doorbell and McKinley’s mom encouraged her to JUST ANSWER THE DOOR ALREADY!

We’ve known this darling little stinker forever, and I cannot believe that she’s crossing over into the teenage years.

(See?  They take four unsteady steps in a row, and then BLAM!  They’re thirteen and asking if they can start studying for their driver’s license exam.)

(Clearly, I had good reason to sob on Friday night.)

There was a cake or two, nachos, enough sugar to buzz a Clydesdale, and a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday To You.

And look!

These pictures make my heart ache with all their sweetness, because THESE ARE MY BOYS… my boys with an s on the end to pluralize them!… and they are walking together, hand-in-hand, to go get themselves some birthday cake and ice cream.  I can barely look at these photos without sobbing from all the sweetness.

The boys’ cousin, Cousin L, was at the party.  She was hanging out with McKinley’s sister, Kiley.  Is this picture packed full of cute and preciousness, or what?

And then there’s McKinley’s youngest sister, Avery.  I’m not even joking when I say I could eat her up, she’s so scrumptious!  Those freckles make me go weak in the knees, and her missing teeth make my heart grow three sizes, just like the Grinch’s did.

I will say that the boy whispered to me, “Mom?  There are A LOT of girls at this party!”  Like the boy, McKinley has been blessed with a pack o’ fantastic friends.

And there’s Hubs, in his Valentine’s Day sweatshirt, sitting with a blurry boy.  Apparently getting my camera to focus on BOTH of them was beyond what I’m capable of achieving.

Are they both incredibly handsome, or what?

And then the grand finale of the party was little Avery, dancing to the tunes of a musical birthday card.  Be still, my heart!

And then we came home.

And we loafed around our house, because it was Sunday evening, and it had been a precious weekend that was plum full of goodness and we didn’t want it to end.

Y’all have a very merry Sunday.  I’ll be over here at my house, pushing Thing 2 to the floor and shouting out, “NO!  You’re too little to experiment with walking!  Just keep crawling and stay my baby for another six or twelve years yet!”

2 thoughts on “Taking The Next Step

  1. I LOVE YOUR BLOG!!!!! They do grow up so fast. You look at your newborn and turn around and they are five. Looks like you had a fun Sunday. I came over from House Of Rose. I am so glad I did!!!

  2. You’ve got the right idea…I don’t care what you have to do…duct tape those eleven chubby toes together at the ankles, or spray Thing 2 from head to toe with the stiffest hairspray you can find, just DO SOMETHING to keep that kid from growing one more millimeter! What a keeper!

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