Thursday, May 5, 2011

This Is Not About Traveling With Toddlers

So it’s been awhile. I see that it has been nearly a month since I got my blog on. I did that thing again that I used to do when I journaled. Because a lot has happened since I last wrote I got all heavy and overwhelmed thinking that I would have to fill my readers in with detailed accounts of the three biggest things that have happened over the past few weeks so I avoided writing. Nope. Not gonna do it. No detailed accounts. Nutshell version: we traveled across the country (four airplane rides with two 2 year-olds on laps) and we had two birthday parties for the boys—one in Idaho and one here. There.
The boys at their Virginia party (cowboy theme)
But in the more recent past: two days ago Calvin hugged my head and patted my hair and told me he loved me, last night a caterpillar fell down my shirt while I was watching a movie, and tonight the mom of a student I tutor paid me a compliment I might never forget.
They were all startling, but in different ways of course. I don’t know why I didn’t scream when I felt the caterpillar wiggle out of my hood and fall. I guess I didn’t want to scare my husband or interrupt the movie. But also, that caterpillar was downright cute. Granted, it was much cuter on the floor than it was in my shirt, but still, its wriggly little scrunchie body made me think of being a little girl and watching them curl up in my hand when I held them. How did I used to do that without smashing them in between my grubby tomboy fingers? I didn’t pick this one up because I didn’t think I could without squishing it. It was one time when having the boys’ toys still strewn around from the day of play was convenient, because Brian just picked up a little pink shovel and let it wriggle onto it and then plopped the critter outside. I wish the little fella luck as he explores the giant tree that is creeping onto our balcony.
And when Calvin did that with his hands and his little voice and smiling face, to be all cliché about it, my heart melted. There is just nothing like having kids. I worry more than I ever have in my life, but I also laugh and love more than ever. Once in a restaurant before one of Cal’s surgeries we overheard a tactlessly loud customer comment to her friend about our twins. The boys were about four months old and in their terribly convenient little carseat bucket things hanging out in our booth. She whispered in a non-whisper something like, “I would never want twins. You’d have to divide your love.” Brian and I just exchanged incredulous looks. I didn’t say anything at the time but later I was thinking that really it’s more like my love multiplied from having twins. Anyway, it was cool to hear Cal say that to me and since then he’s done it a few times.
I have four students who I tutor, primarily in writing. It brings in great money, but I also find that I truly enjoy helping these kids, especially one-on-one. I guess I get my teacher fix from it. The mom tonight told me how much her son’s writing has improved from working with me. She said it was amazing and that she didn’t know that one person could ever help her son so much just from a short meeting once a week. Anyway, it caught me off guard in a good way and made me want to keep helping kids with writing.
Things the boys have been saying lately…
“Calvin and Clark say good morning Mamama!”
“Yucky diapers outside” (this seems to be their twin code for “look at me, brother, here I am and I’m funny”) They kept doing it across the rows of seats on the airplanes when they saw each other on our laps.
Cal saw a 2 year-old girl on an airplane and said, “Girl, girl. Touch it, touch it.”
“ceiling fans go round and round”

“Wild wild west, wild wild west, wild wild wild wild west” (to the tune of Jingle Bells…thank you Elmo’s World)
When asked what his name is, Cal typically responds, “DAWN!” exuberantly, or else “C-A-L. Cal.”
“I sure do like it___fill in the blank___.”
“hands fans” (while twirling their hands around)
“Yeah” Clark says that to everything lately.
Hopefully it will not be weeks until I post again. I feel like I’m back in the swing of my normal routine and can think bloggingly about my experiences for your entertainment. May a caterpillar never fall down your shirt, may your son say he loves you many times, and may unexpected compliments from near strangers make you smile.

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