1. Lance recently helped me make chocolate chip cookies. I finally succumbed to his yanking on my pant leg while trying to measure ingredients and decided to include him in the whole process. I had my reservations, knowing things could go royally wrong, but he managed to stay on task, follow my directives, and not be too much of a nuisance sitting up on the counter while I mixed up the dough, then scooped it onto baking trays. I love that he wants to be involved in whatever I am doing, and I (patiently) try to include him whenever possible.
Of course, now he asks to “sit on the counter” when it isn’t always a good time, but we’re learning.
2. Learning AND talking… talk, talk, talking. All. The. Time.
Lance is unbelievably conversational for not even two years old. I wish I had soundbites of HIS banter at the end of every day. That would make for some interesting blogging content. Like the time he told me he wanted his birthday cake to be shaped “like a big toad.” Or when he told me, “I am a thirsty boy” as he went to the refrigerator to retrieve his milk. Or when, at random, he recited his bedtime prayer with an exuberant, “AMEN!” at the end. Then there was the other morning after Jan & I were both awake in bed listening to him jibber jabbering to himself in his crib and he called out, “Papa, I am awake!!” (as if we didn’t know).
Sometimes his commentary isn’t quite so cute. Like when he said, “Mommy, be quiet!” to me while I was talking on the phone. Or “I don’t want to” when I ask him to eat another bite of his dinner. Or “I won’t do it” when I ask him to pick up some toys. Those moments occasionally make me wish he wasn’t quite so keen on expressing himself this early. Did I mention when he says, “I made a big mess, Mommy.”
He also repeats anything and everything I say. Apparently, I say “Oh my gosh” a little too frequently. He’s got that one down pat.
My mom always told me I was talking in full sentences by the time I was two so he is definitely taking after me in this regard. Although, I am pretty sure his ability to call people by name and his bi-lingual skills by far surpass any linguistic talents I ever had. Oh my gosh.
3. I cannot get enough of fall this year. I have always, always loved fall, but this year is even more special for some reason. This whole month has been full of my complete adoration for all things fall, especially the beautiful leaves. My apologies if you are getting sick of me gush over the leaves, but I absolutely love admiring all the red, orange, and yellow hues as the leaves begin to brighten, peak, and then eventually fall wistfully into the yards of my neighbors and streets in my neighborhood. We seriously have some of the prettiest trees in town!
4. Coming in a close second to my distinct affinity for leaves is pumpkins. Not just the big bright orange gourds that come out of the Earth either. I love those kinds of pumpkins, too, but I am talking pumpkin flavors. Yes, I am one of those suckers seasonal marketers love. I will flock to and buy almost anything flavored pumpkin this time of year.
Pumpkin spiced latte? Sure, I’d love one! Pumpkin cookies to go with my latte? I’ll have two. Pepperidge Farm pumpkin spice toast? You bet! Pumpkin pie spiced creamer? Yes, please. Pumpkin pie? Pumpkin loaf? Of course and of course. Pumpkin spice cream cheese for my morning bagel? You know it. Pumpkin scented candles? Sign me up!
5. Nonetheless, I am unable to escape the obvious signs that Christmas is right around the corner. Wrapping paper, decorations, stockings, and fake trees are on display in some of the stores, and already, I am receiving an influx of magazines in the mail. Just the other day I opened my mailbox to seven (I repeat, SEVEN) catalogs stuffed in there just waiting to be shopped. Ridiculous. Please stop sending me all of these catalogs, half of which I will never open and almost all of which I will never order anything from. How can I get my name off all these lists at once? If anyone has an answer to this question, I would greatly appreciate the information.
I’m not going to rant here, but I will take this opportunity to make it clear that I am one of those people who does not and will not under any circumstances start celebrating Christmas until December. Now let’s all go trick-or-treating this week and then spend the month of November being thankful and eating turkey and getting used to barren trees and darkness at five o’clock for a while. Come December 1, I will be the first to don an ugly Christmas sweater, sing carols on every radio station at the top of my lungs, decorate the home, and cookie bake my heart out. They call it the 25 days of Christmas for a reason people. Not. One. Day. Sooner.
I feel so much better. Burp.
6. Unbelievably, we have been HOME all weekend. Wonderful, quiet, predictable HOME. Even more unbelievable, we have nothing planned for any upcoming weekends between now and, basically, until the baby comes in January. At that point, we’ll really be homebound for a while, so I am sure something will come up between now and then, but it’s kind of nice to just be for a little while. Just ask my husband. Oh wait, never mind, he is happily snoring on the couch, all curled up next to the pug dog.
For now, we’re enjoying the simple things: a family pizza night out, a trip to the park after a lazy pancake filled morning, naps in the afternoon, and a festive Halloween party with friends. This morning we’ll go to church and the possibility of carving pumpkins, roasting the seeds, and raking the leaves while we play in the them all linger in the fall air. If the elements turn rainy and windy, I guess we’ll settle for another showing of It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
7. I leave you this week with one last fall photo taken (not by me) of the Duckpond at Virginia Tech. A beautiful place anytime of year, but certainly worth admiring this time of year. Consider this kind of like the final nature scene at the end of every CBS Sunday Morning show. If you watch the show, you know exactly what I am talking about. Cut to scene.
On that note (pretend I have the voice of Charles Osgood here), “Happy fall… happy pretty leaves… happy pumpkin-flavored everything… happy let’s-not-think-about-Christmas-yet… Happy Halloween this week for goodness sake. Don’t forget – daylight savings time end’s next week (had to give some useful information and/or a teaser for the following week). Until then, I’ll see you on the radio (kidding about that part, but I had to say it).”
Serene music. Sun graphic. Fade to black.
And that makes seven!
The Banter Lady