Monday, May 2, 2011

Super Weekend

I won’t lie, our lives mainly consist of trying to exhaust Charles by any means possible.  Oh, sure, those means are usually somewhat “character building,” as they say, but nonetheless, the end result is a tired (hopefully napping/sleeping through the night) toddler. 


Some of you might think this is bad parenting.  After all, shouldn’t we be working to expand his horizons, engaging him a variety of “downtime” activities like puzzles and books and crafts?  As it turns out, Tony and I (regardless of my ever-increasing bulk) are pretty active people, so I like to think of our parenting method as “training” for future activity in this family.  Also, as Kelli recently pointed out to me, some kids are sleepers, in the way that other kids are eaters or talkers.  Well, Charles is not a sleeper, a struggle I have documented extensively and one we still battle today.  If our activities are sufficiently stimulating, Charles sleeps more and I sleep more, end of story.


But also, we do play with puzzles and read lots of books.  Just so you know.


This weekend, our activities were perhaps a bit over-the-top.  I don’t think I have ever seen that child so tired as I did on Saturday and Sunday nights.  After all, he got to meet Santa in the off-season.  And Santa rides a giant tricycle.  Who knew?


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They’re a bit scary in person, as you can see…


And then, he got to ride on Grandpa’s boat (well, the boat that Grandpa is running for the summer, at any rate):


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Thumbs up!

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Charlie’s turn to drive (I think they were still in port)

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Ahh, the open ocean.  This boy is definitely a Cook.

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It’s tough work, running around like this all day.


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We’re starting the musical education young… can you see me as a Tiger Mom, cracking the whip to keep him practicing?  No?  Me, neither.

And then came one of those things that only happens in small towns… a Fire Truck Ride.  Capitalized because this is a Big Deal.  I can’t imagine how many rules were broken and insurance violations were made when the Ilwaco Fire Department (it’s volunteer) took group after group of small children on 15-minute engine rides, but it must’ve been more than a few. 


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Charles and Tony got to sit in the front seat without seatbelts and work the airhorn for the whole ride.  None of the kids were belted in, for that matter.


And then came the parade.  During which I didn’t take any photos because, really, they would not have been that great.  Charles had a minor meltdown as he got too tired towards the end, but we stuck it out and he rallied, and then slept halfway home. 


Oh.  And?  We all got sunburns.  Hooray May!


Mom and Dad said...

It was an amazing weekend and you have captured it so well. I can tell you the event in Ilwaco was far different from the one we had Monday morning in Richland. The preschool kids went to visit the firemen at the station. It was very fun with a tour of where they live and relax, but certainly not ride....I too think that was unusual and unique to our little place. How fun for both Tony and Charles since Tony's small child experiences did not include a fire truck ride. So glad he could share that with Charles. More guy activities.

K Schimmy said...

As an educator, I am a Deweyan... children learn best when they are engaged in activities that keep them interested and moving. This is the kind of learning you are providing for Charles, and being the sharp guy he is, he will also pick up the other "stuff" like reading and numbers. His learning style dictates that he must DO, and that is wonderful.

We sit down and read, too, but probably not as often as the experts would like. But you know what? We DO things. We go out and look at things, and Ruary asks questions, and gets interested. A love of learning (whatever form of learning that may be) is really the best gift we can give these little people. So, great job!

Amelia said...

Thanks, Kelli. I happen to think it works this way, too... after all, Charles is learning his numbers by counting how many school buses are at the school as we pass every morning, not necessarily from static photos on a page. He is learning, and he has the added bonus of lots of fun experiences with involved parents.