Friday, June 3, 2016

A Bit of Catching Up

Forgive the longer-than-usual absence. Looks like I took my summer break a month (or two) earlier than usual.

But never to fear dear reader, I'm back and I've got tales to tell. Exciting fanciful, absolutely amazing stories that will excite and inspire you like none you've ever read bef....sorry, sorry, sorry. I really don't have stories like this.

The fact is, life's just been proceeding as usual of late. Which is to say it's moving at warp speed and spare moments have never been tougher to come by.

The boys in the hamper. We've found that cleaning them
inside the washing machine saves time. Don't worry,
we're not using the dryer, Mrs. Blackwell and her "rules."
And, for about the last three weeks Casa de Blackwell has had a nasty sickness rampaging through it. We've all been sick; the little guy in particular has had it rough.

He's been waking up coughing and, in general, feeling miserable.

The doctor prescribed some medicine for him but, because he's coughing, it has a habit of firehosing right back up — often all over his mom or me.

Administering the medicine has been a particular pain in the rear because this kid — much like his brother — is a fighter. If he doesn't like something, he revolts.

And he does not like taking his medicine. At. All.

He kicks his legs, desperately flailing for leverage he can use to push and propel himself away from whomever of his mother or father is unfortunate enough to be holding him. He arches his back. He twists his head from side to side. He rocks. He resists. He's even started pursing his lips.

That's right. He closes that little mouth as tight as possible. Fortunately, his cold has come in handy. His nose has frequently been stuffed up, forcing him to open his mouth to breath. But even then it's amazingly difficult to get the medicine in there.

I don't know if you've ever tried bathing a cat, but it's about at that level of insanity, and just about as wet.

Once he's asleep  Mrs. Blackwell and I usually manage to squeeze in a couple hours too. But, when  he wakes up, we wake up. (Note to self: when purchasing next home, invest in soundproofing bedroom walls.)

Mother's Day. Just as the "sickness" was
taking up residence in our lives. 
Eventually he goes back to sleep and usually not long after that Mrs. Blackwell and I have to get to work. Night after night, it went. Not getting sleep only compounds being sick – it protracts it. Yes, it's a tough set of circumstances but, boo-hoo-hoo.

This is life and it's moving fast. If you stop to whine or feel sorry for yourself, the sad state of your sleep and the growing bags under your eyes, it passes you by.

Speaking of moving fast, that's the speed the littlest guy likes to move now that he's started crawling — a new development that began just this week.

He's been on the mend the past seven days and during that time he's progressed from a little, four-point hop to a full-on, fast-as-can-be crawl.

The benefit here is that he likes to move. This tires him out, which for the past three nights has contributed to him sleeping far better, I believe.

The drawbacks to a child starting to crawl, as any parent can tell you, are many. The baby gate will be going back up sometime soon. We'll have to be far more diligent about keeping small nick-knacks, toys and other things off the floor and out of his reach.

Doors will need to be closed, gates shut and secured consistently. And throughout, eyes will need to be fixed on that whirling little dervish.

Within this climate of heightened awareness and focus on our littlest bundle of joy, Master Blackwell no doubt is sensing opportunity. With our gaze diverted, his agenda unfolds apace.

Mostly his plans consist of climbing onto the counter so that he can get his hands on gummie vitamins, or trips to the pantry where he seeks out whatever food happens to be his favorite this week.

Feeling better, buddy? 
Door knobs are no longer a match for his vice-like hands — ditto for the fridge door. His legs are longer and stronger, his feet fleeter, his cunning and guile growing by the day.

Yes, while his heart screams cute and loving ally, his brain and never-ending calculations betray it with the consistency of a Swiss timepiece.

He is a formidable, happy little presence and while the above description is apt, we're just as likely to find him sitting on his bed reading a book as we are to find him standing atop the garbage can so that he can reach the Teddie Grahams.

As for Mrs. Blackwell and I, well, we're doing alright. The sickness has slowly lifted at the house. Coughs are less prevalent and we're no longer clearcutting forests to make Kleenex.

It's summer in Madison now, the little guy's first summer. He's crawling. His brother is plotting and mom and dad got a great night's sleep last night. The good times are already rolling.

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