Monday, August 18, 2014


I'm writing this from my phone. It's a pain in the butt. There's no auto correct or auto caps and let's face it, my thumbs are fat and clumsy and the keyboard is tiny and sensitive. But if I wait until I can get my computer out, I might forget.

My life is slipping away, faster than I can even believe. Barrett is six months old. Six! Each day seems to go by faster than the one before. My kids are growing up before my eyes. Barrett seems older each time he wakes from a nap. Will says words wrong one day and then the next day, he says them correctly. I want so badly to grab each tiny moment, each little grubby hand and slobbery face and freeze them into my memory, keep them for years later when I can no longer remember what my kids looked like when they were little. I can't even remember what William looked like as a baby. In my fickle mind, he's always been this big two year old. All I have are pictures.

So I want to grab it all, I want to hoard all of these fragments. But I can't, and that knowledge is both terrifying and liberating. Liberating in that all I can do some days is forget about the camera and soak it in. And terrifying in that I KNOW I will forget these days, just like high school is a vague blur of mostly bad memories. (Why does the mind do that? Hang onto the few unpleasant memories instead of the hundreds of happy ones?)

I want to remember how last night, Will was walking down to the "tractor barn" with daddy and without even turning his head to look at me, he waved casually and yelled, "See ya mom! Goin' to see tractor dada!" He was such big stuff, too busy to turn his head to say bye.

I want to remember how yesterday, Barrett kept giving me open mouthed, sloppy kisses and laughing. We were both laying on our bellies on the bed and I'd lean in and give him a big kiss on the cheek, and then he'd lean over and return it. I think he's still too young to quite know what we were doing - maybe? - but he thought it was funny. I wonder what he thought we were doing.

I want to remember how today I put away the baby bouncer because Barrett won't stay in it any more.

I want to remember how Will called the elevator the "alligator" today.

I want to remember how a couple weeks ago, daddy was taking out the garbage, hauling the huge blue rolling can down our long driveway, and Will saw him and yelled "Wait!" He frantically ran to the garage to grab something, anything to drag beside daddy. He went running after Brian with a red snow shovel. One big man and one little man walked out of my sight.

I want to remember how Will keeps saying, "Look at the mess up here!" whenever he reaches the top of the stairs on the way to his room. Sometime last month, when I was in the middle of sorting through the boys' closet, there were clothes everywhere. All I can guess is that at some point, Brian said, "Look at the mess up here!" And it stuck. And now... every time. "There's no mess," I say to Will.

I want to remember how Barrett is a little peanut, chubby but small. I guess I was used to Will always being in the 95% percentile. Barrett's dropped a range at every appointment. Now he's in the 25-50th. I hope one day I will look back and read this and tell myself, Why were you so worried? 

I want to remember how Barrett loves his doorway jumper. He bounces vigorously and happily, or he lounges with his arms resting on the tray. He's the world's most laid-back baby. I seriously can't believe that he emerged from all the sugar I ate during my pregnancy.

I want to remember how Barrett LOVES WILL. How Will is learning that Barrett reaches for everything, including his hair. How Will is learning to say, "No-no, Barrett," in a friendly way, rather than, "Barrett! NO!" How they make each other laugh sometimes. How Will is excited to see him when he wakes up. How William pronounces his name, "Bay-yett!"

I want to remember how William talked to Elmo and Big Bird the whole way to the doctor's office today. Everything he saw was, "Elmo, yook at that big truck!" "Big Bird, see Caddy!"

I want to remember how I gave Barrett a blanched green bean to gum at dinner as he sat on my lap... how at one point, he held it in his mouth like a cigarette and continued reaching for everything on the table. "Look at Barrett!" I said, and Brian and Will both burst out laughing.

I want to remember how William dawdles up the stairs on his way to bed, how he says goodbye to everything - daddy, the bear rug, and the day's favorite toys. I want to remember how much it drives me nuts, because by that point I'm anxious for a break, but I do try to be patient. It is cute.

I want to remember how, when I popped this balloon that Will had been playing with (naptime rocks for secretly discarding bothersome toys), the face I'd drawn shrank down to a perfect miniature.... and so did Will's dirty handprint. Why were his hands so dusty?

I want to remember how, on Sunday, we had a birthday party for Red. How Will is so into blowing out candles and singing happy birthday that it was perfect. We "baked" Red a cake, using stale graham crackers and old Hershey's kisses and leftover marshmallows from who-knows-when. He smashed the ingredients and measured the marshmallows and "helped" with the Halloween sprinkles that had been sitting in there... and blew out the candles (er... I mean, helped RED blow out the candles... a dozen times) and picked out a game to play and of course would not eat a bite of the cake, so it was trashed, with no ill effects to my pantry.

Yookit dis hammer!
I bang it?
Bangin' dis chock-it?
When else were we going to use these? Unfortunately, there's still half a jar left.
Red's cake(s)... a gooey mix of melted marshmallow, crushed graham crackers, chocolate, and a heavy dose of sprinkles.
Yookit dis! I made dat!
Happy birthday, Red!
I want to remember how much I'm looking forward to getting a better smartphone, so I can take better pictures!

I want to remember how, a few weeks ago, Will played with Duplos at the library. It was such a cool set, from the movie Planes, but instead of the planes, he zeroed in on a small silver and blue flag that became his "chainsaw". Maybe it's because he hasn't seen the movie yet. Anyway, he ran around the kids' section of the library "chainsawing" everything in his path. I kept having to remind him to whisper.

My chainsaw!
Dis chainsaw, biiiiiiig.
Brrrm, brrm!
I want to remember how at night, just before I leave the room, William rests his head on his pillow and looks up at us with huge, shining eyes and whispers his last thoughts of the day. Sometimes they have to do with tractors, food, fireworks, or friends. They're always random. And how when Barrett nurses when he's tired, he throws his arm down flat by his side, palm facing back, and his eyes begin to roll and his eyelids start to get heavy. How he snuggles into my chest, still. How he is so, so sweet. They both are.

I want to remember how Will falls asleep with his blanket wrapped around his head, no matter the temperature. How he's incredibly sweaty when I go to check on him one last time. How he sleeps.

(the monkey says, "I can't sleep!")
I blog now for one reason- I don't want to forget these things.


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