Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Music at the ready

I realize that in today's world of instant everything, when Biscuit asks for a song he wants to hear, I should have it right at my fingertips.
I have satellite radio in my car. I have a fancy mp3 player for occasional listening at work or when I'm having a solo lunch. I have the CDs and even cassette tapes that Jeff and I combined when we got married. And I love them all. 

But even with all those musical options, when Biscuit asked me to play him a song tonight, I couldn't do it.

"Mom, can you pay 'Jinger Bells'?" Biscuit asked.

We were listening to Christmas music on a satellite channel, but it was some boy band singing a different song. You could hear bells in the background of the music, so I guess that's what triggered Biscuit's question.

"I don't have that song with me," I said to Biscuit.

"Yes you do, Mom. Yes you do," Biscuit said.

So I started singing "Jinger Bells."

"Not YOU singing it, Mom. I want to hear the other people singing it," Biscuit said to me.

Way to put down on your mother's singing, Little Man!

I finally convinced him that I couldn't play that song for him on the radio.

"Okay, Mom. I get it," Biscuit said. Then he sat there quietly for about 30 seconds. "Can you pay the song about that lady coming around the mountain?"

And the explanation began again.

Next it was, "Can you pay the song about the twinkle stars?"

"No. I can't play that one, either," I said to Biscuit.

And the explanation began again.

Speaking of songs, do you remember this one?

"This is the explanation that will never end. It just goes on and on my friend ..."

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Name that tune

Biscuit has learned to hum.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again ... it constantly amazes me how much kids have to learn. I mean, who thinks about the fact that kids have to learn how to hum?!? 

Biscuit has been making cooing-singing-type noises since he got here. And like most babies, he has always had a reaction to music. When he was wee-tiny, I would sing an old reggae song to him (he never complained about my singing voice) ... "don't worry, about a thing, 'cause every little thing, gonna be all right." 

When he was about 1 1/2 years old, he heard that song on TV. I hadn't sung it to him in a long time, so I was really surprised that he had a reaction to it. He stopped what he was doing, got really quiet and just stared at the TV until the song was over. I was amazed and really touched that he recognized it.

I secretly hope that Biscuit is musical. I would love it if he picked up an instrument or if he loved to sing. I have a piano and a guitar, and I allow Biscuit to play them (as witnessed by the many videos I've posted). Biscuit has a drum, a xylophone and several other little fun instruments to play. So if he is musically inclined or interested, I think we've given him a good start.
But hearing him humming around the house. Hearing him make music with his own little voice. It just makes me smile every single time. You can actually tell what the song is by the intonations in his voice.

And if you think about it, do people hum when they're in a bad mood? Hearing Biscuit hum makes me feel like he's happy.
I got my Mama a refrigerator magnet that says, "If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy." Well, in this case, Mama is very, very happy. And I hope Biscuit is, too.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Out of the mouth of my babe

A few recent comments from Biscuit:

Cowboy and ringmaster: "Mom, I'm a cowboy, and you're a ringmaster. Ringmasters are in charge. They say who gets to be on the floor. Cowboys have to go to the farm."

I don't ever want to discourage Biscuit from saying what he's thinking, but sometimes I want to look him in his pretty blue eyes and say, "What in the world are you talking about?!?"

Tacos: We had chicken tacos the other night, and Biscuit was excited. 

"Mom, I like tacos. Tacos are good for everybody. Tacos make you feel really really better." 

I sautee black beans and whole-kernel corn in olive oil and garlic to go on our tacos, and Biscuit seems to think that the black beans don't quite look like black beans.

"Mom, can I have some of that corn and blueberries on my taco?" Biscuit asked. I told him he could.

"Corn and blueberries are really, really good, Mom. I like lots of tacos."

Christmas songs: It's always amazing to me when I remember that children are not born knowing Christmas songs. They have to learn those, just like they have to learn everything else.

Biscuit's first Christmas song is "Jingle Bells." But that's not quite how he sings it.

"Mom, listen to me sing a Christmas song, 'Jinger bells, jinger bells, jinger all the way."

Good helper: Biscuit loves to help. Even taking a piece of paper to the trash can makes him very happy.

When I got home this evening, Biscuit came running to greet me.

"Mom. I'm a good helper," Biscuit said. "I help Dad with the laundry, and that was a nice thing for me to do."

"That WAS a nice thing for you to do," I said.

"Yeah, I'm a good helper, Mom. I do good things," Biscuit said.

He's a good helper, and he's humble, too!

He likes to be right: Like most people I know, Biscuit does not like to be wrong. Tonight, he actually argued with me.

"My horse has 10 legs, Mom," Biscuit said.

"No. All horses have 4 legs," I told him.

"No, Mom. My horse has 10 legs because he can run really fast," Biscuit said.

"Yes, your horse CAN run really fast, but he does it on 4 legs," I told Biscuit.

"My horse is the same as the 'brown cowboy' horses, and he's got 10 legs. I can count them, and nobody else can count my horse's legs because they're being quiet."

Wait a minute, did my 3-year-old son just tell me to shut up?!? Yes, I believe he did.

I asked Biscuit to bring over one of his horses, and we counted its legs. When I pointed to each leg and let Biscuit count, his total came to 4. But when Biscuit held the horse and counted, 6 extra legs made their way in there somehow.

"See, Mom? See? I told you. I told you that. My horse has 10 legs."

Oh, and just for good measure, throw in the fact that Biscuit can't pronounce his L's, which means he was arguing about "wegs."

Blessing the food: Friday night, we took my parents to a diner near our house. Jeff, Biscuit and I ordered breakfast food. Biscuit loves the silver dollar pancakes. 

My parents both ordered off the dinner menu. They each got a small garden salad before their entrees came out.

"Can you say the blessing, Biscuit?" my Mama asked.

Biscuit looked around the table and had a bit of a frown on his face.

"There are no pancakes here, Grandmama. I don't have any pancakes," he said.

Biscuit thought he only said the blessing once he had his own food. I guess nobody else's food needs a prayer.

Say "Cheese!"

Biscuit has had a camera shoved in his face since the day he arrived. But it seems like even with all the photos I take of him, there are a couple each year that I just fall completely in love with.

Here are a few of my favorites:

1 day old

2 months old

7 months old

11 months old

18 months old

2 years old

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A visit with the Jolly Old Elf

We took Biscuit to see Santa Claus on Friday evening. This was our third year seeing this Santa, and we just love him. He's so kind and very patient.

As we walked toward Santa's chair, Biscuit made his way behind me. He wanted no part of Santa.

But as we got closer, I squatted down and held onto Biscuit while Santa talked to him. Within 30 seconds, Biscuit was sitting on his lap, having a great conversation.

He put on his best fake smile (oh, how I hate the fake smile), and the ladies taking the pictures oohed and aahed over him. Biscuit looked way too grown up sitting up on Santa's lap. Some days I look at him and wonder where my baby went.

Anyway, he told Santa that he wanted some firefighters for Christmas. He also told Santa he would be a really good boy. We'll see about that!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Deputy Biscuit

Watch out bad guys! Biscuit was deputized today. 

In addition to his cowboy and firefighter careers, he has now added sheriff's deputy to the list.

A friend of ours swapped his own career from newspaper reporter to sheriff's deputy. I think his military background helped lead him in that direction, and I think he'll be great at it.

He got his car in August, and we've been trying to get Biscuit over there to check it out ever since then. Well, today was the time.

Here are a few pictures of Biscuit being deputized and checking out the car:

He had to promise to eat his veggies and keep his room clean.

That's where the bad guys go.
Roger that.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A new Nativity set

I found a cute Nativity set for Biscuit that he can actually play with. 

I told him about each person and animal. But then Biscuit took it into his own hands.

He took Baby Jesus on a ride on his bouncy horse. "Baby Jesus likes to ride my horse. He say giddyup and yeehaw."

Then the angel fell down and hurt his wings, so he had to go see Dr. Mom to get fixed. Dr. Mom also had to listen to the angel's heart.

A few of the animals had to leave the stable and go to a barn play set that Biscuit got for Christmas last year.

Then he said Mary was very hungry. "Did you give her something to eat?" I asked him.

"Yeah. Mary was hungry, so I gave her some hay. When you live in the barn, you eat hay," Biscuit said. Poor Mary!

Then Mary got a break. "Mom, Mom! Mary is going to a picnic. I'm going to put her in a box and take her to a picnic."

Biscuit just brought Mary back to the stable. Speaking in a high-pitched voice, Biscuit said, "Hi, guys, I'm back from my picnic."

And I'm not sure what happened after that, but the police showed up at the manger. There were two black-and-white patrol cars parked right out front.

Look at those sheep gossiping, trying to figure out what's going on!
Jeff's version of what the police officers said was, "It's SILENT night. Get it? That means keep down the noise. We don't want to have to come back out here again!"

That comment is why I've developed "The Look" that I give to Jeff when I don't want him sharing his smart aleck comments with our son!

Anyway, Biscuit has several books about the Nativity, so I think it will be fun when we can read the books and have the people and animals to play with. And I'll make sure to leave out the parts about Mary eating hay and the po-po showing up!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Lots and lots of lights

A golf course about 45 minutes from where we live covers a good part of its grounds with lights for Christmas, and I've been waiting since Biscuit arrived for the right time to take him.

Tonight was the right time!

I looked online for the hours and found out about a "throwback" deal that was only $5 a car to get in. It's $15 on the weekends and $10 on regular weeknights. So we picked Biscuit up from day care, grabbed some car-friendly dinner food and headed over to take part in the special deal.

Biscuit didn't really get it at first, but as we kept going, he started seeing things like snowmen, rocking horses, Santa. That's when it got fun.

We stopped halfway through at the gift shop, which was in a renovated barn. Believe it or not, the prices at the gift shop and concession area are very reasonable. 

They had a big bonfire out behind the gift shop, and for $1.25, you could buy a stick with five marshmallows threaded on it. Since roasted marshmallows are one of my favorite things ever, I got a stick. My freakish husband doesn't like marshmallows, so I splurged and bought him a cookie for $1. I should've told him he could eat marshmallows or nothing! But I guess that wouldn't really be in the Christmas spirit.

Biscuit was getting tired by the end of the display, and he was fast asleep within about five minutes of us exiting the park.

The evening definitely put me in the Christmas spirit.

Here are a few pictures of what we saw:

At the entrance gate.


Lots of pretty archways over the road.

Reflection in the water of a ship, lighthouse, whale and dragon.


Biscuit called these "spider web lights."


Nativity scene.

A dream for us all.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Birthday party #3

It occurred to me when I mentioned Biscuit's stick horse, that I never wrote about Biscuit's third 3rd birthday party.

We went to my parents' house for a combo party weekend for my niece and Biscuit. Their birthdays are a week apart. 

My niece turned 13. She had a sleepover that Friday night with eight of her friends. NINE 13-year-old girls! My brother and sister-in-law either love their daughter or they're truly gluttons for punishment!

While my niece was having her party, Biscuit got to open presents from his Grandmama and Papa. He got a stick horse that makes galloping and whinny noises and a pair of character rain boots. It's funny because his fire boots are technically rain boots, too, but Biscuit will argue with you about that. He says his fire boots are fire boots not rain boots. But his character boots ARE rain boots.

Jeff was covering a basketball game that night, and I took a picture of Biscuit riding his horse with Jeff's game in the background. 

For this party, Biscuit got one of my Mama's chocolate pies. It's really not fair to show you a picture of it because you can't possibly imagine how good her chocolate pies are!

My niece and Biscuit both loved their birthday treat, and Biscuit was so worn out that he slept through almost all of our 2 1/2-hour trip home. 

Birthday celebration 2011 ... complete!

Cowboy Biscuit rides the range

"Mom, I'm going to ride the range, okay?" Biscuit said to me this evening. "I'm going to yah my horse and ride the range."

It's funny to me that Biscuit turns a lot of words into verbs.

He yahs his horse to get it to go. And when he's he's telling us a story about a bear chasing a horse, he says the bear "roars" the horse instead of the bear roaring AT the horse.

In other cowboy news ... Biscuit's favorite thing to watch right now is a very tame Western that Jeff has on DVD. The DVD's box has sepia-toned scenes from the movie on it. So when Biscuit wants to watch it, he asks Jeff for the "brown cowboy movie."

The cowboys in the brown cowboy movie ride the range, and they often wave their hats around as they get their horses moving. So Biscuit does the same thing.

And since he got a stick horse from his Grandmama for his birthday, he gallops everywhere he goes, whether he's on his horse or not.

Anyway, I got some pictures of him as he yahs his horse.

Now THESE are cowboy boots! A friend of Biscuit's handed these down to him. He swaps several times a night between these boots, his brown cowboy boots and his fire boots. Spoiled? Nah!

Sunday, November 20, 2011


"Mom, I want to be a firefighter for Thank-you-for," Biscuit said to me one morning this week."

"What is 'Thank-you-for,'" I asked him.

"Thank-you-for is a howiday when you say thank you for, um, things," Biscuit said.

"Do you mean Thanksgiving?" I asked him.

"Um, yes. Thanksgiving. I want to be a firefighter for Thanksgiving."

I tried to explain to him that you don't dress up for every holiday, only Halloween. He doesn't believe me.

I have to work the Friday after Thanksgiving, so my parents come here for the holiday. They get here Thursday morning, then Mama and I cook, and we eat about 2 or so. Mama and I usually hit a couple of sales Thursday evening. Friday morning, I go to work. I finish up in time to meet everybody for lunch. Then we take Biscuit to see Santa Claus. Then the boys (my Daddy, Jeff and Biscuit) go home, and Mama and I hit some more sales.

We've had this tradition for a few years now, and I'm really getting used to it. So much so that when Mama asked what we were doing for Thanksgiving, I said, "What do you mean?" She claims she was teasing me, but I told her that I'm a creature of habit, and she can't go messing with my habits!

I've been wondering how Biscuit will respond to Santa this year. The first year he saw Santa, Biscuit was too little to really understand. He sat on Santa's lap and just couldn't seem to stop staring at him. As a matter of fact, the photo we got was of Biscuit and Santa looking at each other. Last year, the look on Biscuit's face was priceless. He was on the verge of tears, but couldn't quite let go enough to cry. On the picture we got, you could tell Biscuit's bottom lip was quivering. Poor little man.

Biscuit has already told me that Santa is bringing him some firefighters. We haven't discussed Santa with him, so I have no idea where he heard about it. Day care, I'm guessing.
Anyway, I guess we'll see how it goes Friday.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Random stuff

Timing: Biscuit doesn't really get the time thing yet. I can tell him "just a minute" and to him, that might be next month. 

For the past couple of weeks, Biscuit has been testing out some timing words. But he's been stuck on "last week."

"Biscuit, we're having muffins for breakfast. Do you want one?" I asked him.

"No. I ate muffins last week," Biscuit said.

"What about yogurt?" I asked.

"Nope," Biscuit said. "I had yogurt last week."

Hello: The phone rang at our house one evening this week. Caller ID said it was a telemarketer. We let Griffin answer the phone.

Griffin: Hello? (pronounced heh-yo)
Caller: Hi. Can I speak to Kim?
Griffin: Kim?
Caller: Yes, is Kim there?
Griffin: Is Kim there? Is Kim there?
The caller hung up. What a shame.

Healing powers: Biscuit stumbled over his feet and hit his ear on the wooden arm of my rocking chair. I was sitting in the chair, and I heard the thump when he hit it. His ear and the side of his neck flushed a bright red, and the shriek that came out of his mouth was ear-numbing.

I held Biscuit and rocked him. He asked me to kiss his ear, so I did.

A few minutes later, still crying, Biscuit slipped down off my lap and said, "I'm going to go into your room and calm down, Mom."

At first I didn't understand what he said. "You're going to my room to do what?" I asked him.

"I'm going to calm down, Mom. Dad, can you come with me to calm down?" Biscuit asked.

Jeff got up and went with Biscuit to our bedroom.

Jeff said no sooner than Biscuit had crossed the threshhold, he stopped crying, smiled and said, "I'm calm, Dad. I'm all calm down now."

Apparently, our bedroom has super healing powers that kick in just by walking through the door.

Part monkey: Biscuit's body is becoming able to do things that his brain doesn't know he shouldn't do. He can run and jump and climb and wreak havoc, all the time having no idea that he's not invincible.

Biscuit and Jeff were watching TV in our bedroom while I was watching TV in the living room. I heard Biscuit's feet pitter-pattering down the hall into the living room. He was behind my chair, so I couldn't see him. But he was awfully quiet, so I turned around to see what he was up to.

I found him standing ... STANDING ... on the piano stool, reaching for an "Adam-12" DVD box.

"GET DOWN FROM THERE!" I yelled at him. "You're going to fall and get hurt."

"I'm just getting the peace car movies for Dad and me," Biscuit said, in a sweet little voice with his hand turned up.

That child is going to break his neck!

On standby

I lit the gas logs this evening, and I guess Biscuit wanted to make sure the fire stayed contained in the fire place. He moved his "fire station" and his biggest fire truck into a ready position.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Puzzle time

This is a puzzle:

This is a puzzle turned into a fire station:

Jeff's brother, his wife and their two kids gave Biscuit this puzzle for his birthday. Educationally and physically, all the latches and locks are supposed to help improve fine motor skills. But more importantly, it's fun.

For some reason, Biscuit decided that when all the doors of the puzzle were open, it became his firet station. As you can see, he has parked a fire engine or rescue vehicle of some kind in every open door.

In his pwn words, "I'm ready to rescue everybody!"

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

3-year-old checkup

Biscuit had his 3-year-old checkup Monday. The doctor said we have "a little superstar" on our hands. And who am I to disagree with a professional?!?

Biscuit weighs 29 pounds and is 36 inches tall. So now that the fair has come and gone, Biscuit is finally tall enough to ride the kiddie rides. He was only 35 1/2 inches tall in September, so he couldn't even ride the little cars that go around in a circle. Next year, I'm going to buy him an unlimited ticket and plunk him down on every kiddie ride in the place!

After his weigh-in, Biscuit had an eye exam. They have a chart with shapes on it for little kids. He answered circles, squares, hearts and triangles, then there was a shape that looked like the outline of a house. The nurse pointed at it and asked Biscuit what shape it was. Biscuit said, "That's an octagon."

Not exactly the answer the nurse was looking for, but at least she could tell that Biscuit realized it was a shape different than the one before it and the one after it. Toward the end of the test, Biscuit even made up his own shape. The nurse pointed to a different house shape, and Biscuit said it was a "circlegon." We realized at that point that Biscuit's attention span had reached its limit, and the nurse called it with 20/40 vision.

The nurse stepped out of the room for a minute, and when she came back, she had the tiniest blood pressure cuff I've ever seen. I explained to Biscuit that it was going to squeeze his arm and that the nurse was going to listen to his heart. He seemed a little skeptical, but the nurse did the whole thing so quickly, Biscuit didn't really have time to fret too much over it. It occurred to me that I had no idea what a normal blood pressure would be for a little kid. Now I know that Biscuit's 89 over 52 is well in the normal range for a 3-year-old.

Biscuit had to get his finger pricked to check his hemoglobin and iron levels. He cried a little bit over that, and I don't blame him. I'd rather somebody stick a needle straight in my arm than to prick my finger! He got a cute bandage and walked around for the rest of the day with his finger held up in the air.

The rest of Biscuit's checkup was a little different than previous ones. It was way more physical. He had to jump up and down. He had to touch his nose then touch the doctor's finger, then touch his nose, then touch the doctor's finger (which the doctor had moved to a different spot). He did that with each of his hands.

The floor tiles in the exam room were mostly white with a few scattered colored tiles. The doctor told Biscuit to walk over to the red tile and jump on it with both feet. Biscuit did it. Then the doctor asked him to do the same with the purple tile and the green tile. This was partly to see that Biscuit can recognize color and also to see how he would respond to multi-part instructions.

Then the doctor asked Biscuit a bunch of questions. 

Doctor: What's your favorite color?
Biscuit: Red.
Doctor: What's your favorite food?
Biscuit: Pizza.
Doctor: What's your favorite animal?
Biscuit: A horse.

I told the doctor to ask Biscuit his favorite dinosaur. Biscuit said, "A dromeaosaurus because it's fast like a horse." The doctor laughed and said, "Holy cow." And I laughed and said, "I KNOW!"

Doctor: What do you do with a shovel?
Biscuit: You scoop up dirt with a shovel.
Doctor: What do you do with a hammer?
Biscuit: You tap with it (and he made a tapping motion).
Doctor: What do you put in the refrigerator?
Biscuit: Um, milk. Milk goes in the refrigerator.

Then the doctor handed Biscuit a small specimen cup with a lid on it and said, "Can you throw this to me?"

Biscuit grabbed the cup and drew it back to throw it. Then he dropped his hand by his side and turned around to look at me. Biscuit can throw squishy balls in the house, but he's not allowed to throw anything else. So when the doctor asked him to throw the cup, he had to check with me to see if it was okay. After I gave my blessing, Biscuit threw the cup with one hand then the other. Then he had to kick the cup with each foot.

Like I said, it was a very physical appointment.

Anyway, the doctor said Biscuit is a very bright boy and is in great physical shape. That boy makes me so proud just being his own little self.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Biscuit's big plan

Biscuit spent his first night away from Jeff and me Saturday night. Biscuit was fine. Jeff was fine. I was a wee bit nervous.

I've spent the night away from Biscuit while he was at home with Jeff. And Jeff has spent the night away from Biscuit while Biscuit was home with me. But we've never both been away from him for that long.

I should say that Biscuit stayed with my brother, sister-in-law and their three kids. Not exactly like shipping him off to boarding school or summer camp, but even so, it was hard sending him home with someone who wasn't me.

Sunday morning, Biscuit went to church with his aunt, uncle and cousins. My sister-in-law teaches Sunday school to kids who are a bit older than Biscuit. The kids in the class were talking about heaven and hell, and one of the kids said something about hell having lots of fire.

My sweet Biscuit baby, who is a wannabe firefighter, stood up and said, "I'm a FIREFIGHTER! I'll put out that fire."

I know most parents have high hopes for their children, but MY son plans to extinguish the fires of hell. Top that!

Random stuff

Some random things about Biscuit:

No hugs for Mama: Jeff and I can't hug if Biscuit is anywhere around. When he sees us hugging, he runs up and says, "I need to hug, too. I need to hug, too." We have to scoop him up and squeeze him in between us. Although I love hugs with just Jeff, I can't say our family hugs are a bad thing.

Costumes: Biscuit doesn't understand that not all holidays require costumes. He was so excited about being a firefighter for Halloween, he announced tonight that he wanted to be a firefighter for Thanksgiving and Christmas, too. 

Wittle bites: Biscuit tries to eat like a polar bear. He chews twice (if that) and swallows. Every once in a while, he makes that gagging face that will scare you to death because you think he's choking. So we've been working with him, talking about the size of bites and how you have to chew a lot before you swallow your food. 

So on a recent morning, Biscuit came up to me and made this declaration: 

"Mom, Dad teached me that if you take BIG BITES, you choke. But if you take wittle bites, you won't choke. BIG BITES, you CHOOOOOOKE! But wittle bites, you don't choke." 

I wish I could've gotten a video of him saying it because every time he said "big bites," he stood up really tall and said it in a loud voice. And every time he said "wittle bites," he bent over a little and whispered. 

Full belly: Biscuit is just starting to understand that his food goes into his mouth but ends up in his belly. After breakfast one morning this week, he walked up to me and pulled up his shirt. 

"I'm full, Mom. My belly is full," he said. Then he poked his belly button. "This hole is full, Mom. I'm all done because this hole is full." 

Nekkid boy: Jeff and I swap off bath duties for Biscuit. Bathtime is usually pretty fun ... unless Biscuit is acting like the stereotypical toddler, of course. 

We start with a few questions: bubbles or no bubbles, quick bath or long bath, train towel or dinosaur towel. 

Then our little creature of habit has a few demands of his own. He must turn on the water. He must climb into the tub instead of having us lift him in the tub. When the bath is done, he must count to 10 before he pulls the plug (sometimes he has us count). And he must lie on his belly and watch the water swirl down the drain. After we dry him off, he takes off running through our bedroom, down the hall, through the living room, through the dining room, through the kitchen and back into our bedroom. 

If I'm sitting in the living room when he runs through, Biscuit will stop beside me and stand there buck naked. I pretend for about 10 seconds that I don't notice anything. Then I'll gasp and say, "Oh my goodness! You don't have any clothes on! You better go get your clothes on before I get you!" Then the chase ensues. 

Biscuit lets out an ear-numbing squeal and takes off running. He gets so tickled when we chase him, and I swear, I think he runs in mid-air for the first three or four steps. 

Once he's back in the bedroom, we work toward getting him into his pajamas. You'd think getting pajamas on would be an easy task, but there's tickling and pretending that we don't know how his pajamas go on. There are lots of kisses and razzies blown on his belly. There's toe counting and enough giggling to erase any trace of a bad day. 

And I bet you thought bathtime was all about getting that boy clean.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Happy birthday, Biscuit!

Today is Biscuit's third birthday. And as cliche as it sounds, I really can't believe he's already 3.

I said Biscuit was having three parties for his birthday, but I forgot about his party at day care. We'll call it Party #2 1/2.

I understand why the policy is the way it is, but I was disappointed because I couldn't bake something to take for Biscuit's day care party. Any kind of treats or sweets you bring in have to be store-bought in their original packaging.

My Mama was a grade mother when I was in elementary school. Grade mothers were in charge of holiday parties, and if I'm remembering correctly, we would have one birthday party sometime during the school year to celebrate everybody's birthday. The Mamas would always get really creative with whatever they brought.

I remember one Easter party when Mama made cupcakes with green icing. She put three or four jellybeans on top of each cupcake, then bent a pipe cleaner from one side to the other to make each cupcake look like an Easter basket.

For Biscuit's birthday, I found some mini cupcakes at the grocery store. His teacher said as the class sang to him, Biscuit was singing along. Then they got to the part where they say his name, and she said Biscuit started looking around smiling at everybody, like "Yeah, it's my birthday!"

Today was Biscuit's last day in the 2-year-old class, and I'm pretty sad about it. We just really loved his teacher, and I think she loves him, too. As I was leaving day care this morning, Biscuit's teacher was holding him on her shoulder, rubbing his back and talking to him. 

Biscuit accomplished so much in the 2-year-old class. I know he'll be learning all new things in the 3-year-old class, but I spent a lot of today thinking about how much Biscuit has changed over the past year. The first two years of his life were all about physical learning -- eating, talking, crawling, walking. But this past year was filled with brain power -- alphabet and letter sounds, Spanish, counting objects, types of animals (remember dromaeosaurus?), shapes and lots of other stuff. His little head has been like a sponge, seemingly soaking in everything he sees and hears.

Anyway, before I get too weepy, here's a glimpse of Biscuit so far:

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Birthday party #2

Biscuit's second 3rd birthday party was the biggest. We invited three of his friends and 11 of our friends.

What?!? He doesn't even have 11 friends yet. Plus, five of our friends are parents to the three friends of Biscuit's we invited.

A couple of month's ago, I started giving Biscuit choices about his party.

"Biscuit, for your birthday, would you rather have dinosaurs or horses?" I asked.

"Horses!" Biscuit said.

A few days later, "Biscuit, for your birthday, would you rather have trains or horses?" I asked.

"Horses!" Biscuit said.

A few days later, "Biscuit, for your birthday, would you rather have fire trucks or horses?" I asked.

"Horses!" Biscuit said.

So the search for horse decorations was on. We got a red cowboy hat for each of the boys. I found some plates with horses on them. And I made some cupcake picks with horses on them.

Biscuit really liked the cowboy hats. He asked to wear his cowboy boots to the party. He was looking good. But then about halfway through the party, my diva baby had a costume change. I went looking for him and found him in our bedroom changing his shoes and hat. He went in our bedroom as a cowboy and came out a firefighter.

We had chocolate cupcakes with chocolate icing, and cheese doodles, of course. After they ate, we took the boys outside to play. After they burned off the sugar of the cupcakes, they came in for present time.

The present opening was a little hard because the first present Biscuit opened was a horse sticker book. Biscuit would've been fine stopping at that. I wish I had a picture of his face when we took the sticker book away so he could open other presents. It was pitiful with a tinge of confusion and anger, like "How could you DO such a thing?!?"

Biscuit got lots of games and books and toys, and after everyone left, I took him on a tour of all his presents. I explained what everything was, and we read the cards, complete with one that had a fire truck on the front.

Overall, it was a fun afternoon.

Here are a few pictures:

Monday, November 7, 2011

Sharp dressed man

Jeff just finished giving Biscuit a bath. He combed Biscuit's hair, then had the following conversation:

Jeff: With your hair combed like that, you look sharp, boy.

Biscuit: No, Dad. I'm not sharp. Scissors are sharp. I'm not scissors.

Birthday party #1

By the time we're done with Biscuit's birthday, he will have had three, count 'em three birthday parties.

My brother and his family came up this past weekend, and we threw a little family party Saturday afternoon. Biscuit's big party was Sunday afternoon. Three of his friends were there, and a handful of mine and Jeff's friends were able to come, too. Several of our friends don't have kids, and I think Biscuit's birthday is an excuse to get to peruse the toy department! I don't blame them. I was overjoyed when Biscuit unwrapped a board game that I loved as a kid.

The third party will be this weekend at my parents' house. Biscuit's birthday is Wednesday, and my brother's oldest daughter's birthday is next Wednesday. So we'll have a combo party for the two of them Sunday afternoon.

Anyway, here are a few pictures from Biscuit's first party.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Potty training? Check!

About a month ago, Biscuit's day care teacher asked us if we thought Biscuit was ready to start potty training. It was a complicated question.

We had been working with Biscuit for a while, but he was showing no interest whatsoever. We read potty-related books to him. We let him accompany Jeff to the bathroom to get an idea of how things are done. We bought him big-boy underwear. A friend of ours gave him some character underwear, thinking it might be an encouragement. But Biscuit wasn't have any of it. A friend even gave us a potty training boot camp program. We used some of the techniques, but with Biscuit in day care, it just wasn't something that we could be consistent with. When you only have evenings and weekends to work on it, you lose the benefit of repetition.

And this probably makes me a horrible mother and person, but I had absolutely no desire to deal with the whole potty training thing. Maybe if Biscuit had been a girl, I wouldn't have been so freaked out by it. It wasn't the physical stuff that bothered me, it was that I felt completely clueless about how to go about the whole thing. And believe me, if we got one piece of advice, we got a million. And a lot of it was contradictory.

So Jeff and I talked about it and figured having help at day care was the way to go. Actually, we didn't even have to talk about it. I told Jeff that Biscuit's teacher offered, and we both looked at each other and said, "Okay."
Let me say that it was clear that Biscuit's teacher has done this before.

The first day, I dressed him in big-boy underwear, and before we could leave for day care, he was wet. I had to change his shirt, his pants, his underwear and even his socks. Once he was re-dressed, we headed off to day care with a backpack holding three complete changes of clothes.

When I picked Biscuit up that afternoon, he was wearing different clothes, and there were two dirty outfits in a bag in his backpack.

Biscuit has a small waist and hips, so finding pants that fit him right now has been quite a struggle. So after realizing that he had gone through four pairs of pants in that one day, I was a little worried that I wouldn't be able to do laundry fast enough to keep up.

But thankfully, my worries were eased. The next day, Biscuit wore the same outfit all day. And it happened again the day after that. And the day after that. And the day after that.

Biscuit has had two accidents since then. He woke up wet from a nap at day care. His teacher said he was pretty upset. He kept apologizing, and she kept telling him that it was just an accident, and sometimes accidents happen. It has made me feel a lot better knowing that his teacher has the same no-pressure frame of mind that Jeff and I do.

We refer to the other accident as a puppy accident. You know how puppies pee when they get too excited? Well, as I was walking with Biscuit to the bathroom, Jeff got home from a long day at work. Biscuit was so excited to see him, he bypassed the bathroom and ran to Jeff. 

Surprise, Dad!

There have been a couple of other situations that I won't go into detail about. I just chalked them up to the learning experience. They're funny stories when told in person, but I don't want to embarrass Biscuit.

Overall, we've been very lucky that Biscuit has tackled this whole thing so quickly. But I think the timing only seems quick. Biscuit can be very studious about learning new things. He tends to think on things for a while before he makes an effort to actually do anything. I think he likes to get all his ducks in a row before he starts putting what he's learned in to practice.

We were warned that even though Biscuit had conquered No. 1, that some kids had more problems with the No. 2 process. So I was very surprised when on the third day of his training, Biscuit told me he needed to do business. And he did.

Biscuit is very independent about the whole thing. He wants to do everything himself. Part of that is because of his teacher. She has a very methodical technique.

The boys have to lift up the seat, then pull down their pants and underwear. Then they lean forward and put their hands on the lifted seat. The lean puts them in the perfect position for good aim. That in itself is very helpful to the person who cleans the bathrooms at my house (which would be me). But then, and this is my favorite part, she teaches the boys that moms and sisters use the bathroom sitting down, so after they pee, the boys have to put the seat back down. She's training them right from the get-go.

I've heard that kids who are doing very well with being potty trained can revert for one reason or another. And if that happens with Biscuit, we'll figure it out.

But for now, we are rejoicing in our Biscuit baby's accomplishment. We are very proud of him, and he is very proud of himself, too.

He went into the bathroom the other day to pee, and when he was done, he said, "Mom, I'm very proud for me to pee in the toilet." (Which he says as "toi-wet.")

I actually teared up a little bit. I'm very proud for you, too," I said to him.