So the Gremlin was recently fortunate enough to become the proud recipient of a new tricycle (courtesy of Grandma). I’m very fortunate in that both his mother and I believe in limiting the amount of material possessions he has – over his last birthday and Christmas, he not only enjoys them, but also enjoys everything he gets. He might not play with everything all the time, but he goes in spurts – trains for a day or two, kitchen for a few days, coloring books in between, Play Dough for a bit. His mother and I are waiting for the day that he gets a new toy, and then almost immediately gets sick of it.
That day almost came last Thursday when he got his trike. After spending half an hour assembling the parts, we lug the trike down three flights of stairs (with no shortage of bruised shins), and the Gremlin – giggling with delight – hops on the trike. We turn to go east down our block, and he begins to pedal – his father faithfully pushing him along. The trike trundles past the hair salon, over the bumps where the sidewalk meets the street, and across the gravel. The upslope to the next sidewalk was a little tougher, but was finally overcome. We made our second turn down the block at which point the Gremlin – wonderful child he is – stands up in his seat, pulls his leg over and says, “All done!”
Maybe he caught both of his parent’s looks of exasperation, maybe he was jealous of his father attempting to take his seat, but the Gremlin quickly decided he was not finished, and rather rudely elbowed the grown man attempting to sit in it out of the way, and proceeded down the block. Crisis averted.
Several cultures consider the wish for someone to have an interesting life, journey, etc… to be a curse as they desire nothing more than to have a nice, quiet life; and interesting events are usually things going wrong. I have thus been wishing for my friends to have intelligent and interesting children.
Anyway, I woke up this morning to a happy child. The Gremlin, with all the “interesting” aspects he brings into our lives, is a generally happy child. We’ve been going over basic emotions so that we can get him to verbalize his feelings and help us figure out what may be wrong with him when he starts crying. He’s very adept at using (agreeing or disagreeing) them to help us figure out what a problem is, though this is usually after he gets upset about it.
So I walk into the kitchen this morning in time to hear the Gremlin, who is on the floor with his mother looking at the letter magnets we have on the fridge say, “Momma, I make Dada happy!” I started laughing at how cute it was, and he pointed and said, “See, Momma?!”
As I was almost ready to head out the door, sitting on the couch putting my shoes on, the Gremlin brought in his lunchbox. As it was a slightly less sturdy brand (Crap-Tek), and the metal bracket connecting the handle to the box had bent. All I did was put it back on the track and bend it back in shape, but as soon as I did, the Gremlin started clapping and saying, “Good job, Dada! Good job!”
I smiled as I got up and went to my backpack that he’d dragged right outside his door, when I noticed a screwdriver sticking through the slide-hole on the door where the lock can be turned from. He’s back to picking locks…
So neither my wife or I believe the Gremlin will ever play football or baseball, even basketball is doubtful. He’s extremely athletic and we think that he will be good at sports, but we don’t believe he has the attention span to play especially the more structured games.
I personally want to get him into wrestling – a new favorite pastime of the Gremlin’s in “big bed” (mommy and daddy’s bed) – however it is certain that he enjoys sports. In addition to the wonderful “Go Bears!” or “Go Blackhawks!” or “Go Fire!” phrases that he runs around the house chanting (at least he hasn’t learned any of the more colorful verbage for referees I’m always worried I’ll use around him without realizing it), he’s able to recognize random sports he hasn’t seen before on the TV.
We were flipping through the channels last night, and the Bulls-Nets game was on. The Gremlin immediately jumped to his feet and began stuttering (as he does when he gets very excited) “I wannoo- I wannoo- I want to watch this!”
So he learned a new phrase – “Go Bulls!”
(Apparently, he also pays attention enough to – as he was wearing his Thomas Jones jersey to the park the other day – have “YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!” be his response when asked how he felt about the Cutler trade.)