Sunday, February 27, 2011

Jack's thoughts and questions about his sister

Jack is getting a little more interested in his sister, maybe because my tummy is starting to pop out a bit. Whenever we talk about the baby in mommy's tummy, he just has a pretty confused look on his face. When we talk about his sister, he smiles. Makes sense that he has a better idea of what a sister is than understanding of mammalian reproduction.

Some of his thoughts and questions:
On his birthday--right now, he is obsessed with his birthday, birthday party, whether the reason I am going out is to shop for a present for him, who is going to be at his party, how the bubble man will get his equipment to our house for the party, whether he will bring the tarp...
Jack: Is my sister going to come out for my birthday party?
Us: No, your birthday is next week, and your sister has to get bigger. She is going to be born in July.
Jack: My birthday is in July.
Us: No, your birthay is in March, next week. July is in the summer.
Jack: What happens in July?
Us: Grandma Nonie's birthday, your sister will be born, it will be summer.
Jack: In summer I am going to go to swimming lessons.
Love the kid logic, that he can just assert that his birthday is in July and then his sister can be there. I suspect if we tried to postpose the party to July, that wouldn't go over so well. But it is nice that he wants her to be there, because his party is clearly for people he likes!

Other thougths:

"Maybe my sister will be small enough to stand up in my tunnel." When it is pointed out that she will be small, but she will not be able to stand, "I gonna hafta help her, we should put her in the middle of the tunnel."

When discussing that she won't be able to talk, just cry, in the beginning: "She's not gonna know how to say please." (I'm not sure where he gets this from, but he has said it a few times; truth be told, he is not that great at saying please either.) "Maybe I can give her a binky."

"I can share my toys with her." He really does seem to get that sharing toys is the major form of social gift-exchange for toddlers, though of course he doesn't always follow through when his friends show up.

Saturday, February 26, 2011


We went to Cancun last week with our friends Kristen, Jason, Ella and "Jack Minor" (so named because last year Ben had been listening to the history of Rome podcast, so was prone to using minor instead of junior). We had a great time. Jack showed greater commitment to the kiddie pool than any other kids I saw. It would be empty when we arrived, fill up, and empty out again, but Jack was a constant. We were careful not to miss any of the peak UV hours between 11 and 2 each day :). More pics soon.
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Final shots from the zoo

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Carosel and Train ride

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One more in the wagon and good-bye hug

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They did actually ride in peace for quite a while.
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I fear the cracker-sharing is about to breakdown

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Denver Zoo

I did have a few more from the Christmas trip. We had a fun trip to the Denver Zoo with the cousins. Jack and Nona shared a wagon ride much of the time, but cousin Nona (who is "growed up" and "not a baby anymore") likes to walk, well run actually, on her own a lot.

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Yesterday I made the mistake of bringing out the Monster truck shirt ill prepared to allow him to wear the shorts that he strongly feels are the only thing that matches. His view is that, to match, clothing must be the same color, not just complementary. I suggested jeans: "Mommy, but those are blue" (quizzically, as if I were a complete idiot). I suggested the red sweatpants would complement the MONSTER lettering, or brown pants would go with the wheels, or dark green pants would go with the truck body, but he insisted on teh shorts. Finally, he agreed to wear the shorts over the red sweatpants, but he was very skeptical of this plan, nor for aesthetic reasons but for logistical ones. He kept saying "it's not gonna work" over and over until it did work. How he reconciles those shark crocs with this outfit, which "do fit me well," I can't say.
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Monday, February 21, 2011

Exciting News!

We are very excited to be expanding our family. We are expecting a little girl on July 11 (Grandma Nonie's birthday, though of course the chances she is actually born that day are not so high)!

We told Jack a couple weeks ago, and though I do not think he really understands, he seemed happy. The conversation went something like this:
Me: Jack, guess what I have in my tummy?
Jack: What?
Me: A baby. And when she gets a little bigger, she will come out and be your sister.
pause. confused smile.
Jack: I love you Mommy. (pause) How do giraffes hug?
Me: I don't know.
Jack: The doctor is going to have to help you get the baby out.
Me: That's right, but first she is going to get a little bigger, then she will come out and be part of our family.
Jack: I think the doctor is gonna hafta use some kind of a tool to get the baby out.
Me: Maybe.

Well, actually, I sort of hope not, but I identify with his confusion about how the baby can possibly get out. He is somewhat familiar with the idea because a friend of ours had a baby recently. We had the shower when she was pregnant, and then we went to visit the baby after she was born (her name is Naomi). This lead to a slight over-generalization because when Jack's nanny asked him what the baby was going to be named, he said, without hesitation "Naomi". He has also explained to people several times that "first the baby is going to grow up" before she comes out. He was very sweet with Naomi, offering her pacifier and little buddy (that he brought for her) when she cried. It remains to be seen whether such empathy tranfers to a little one living in his world.

Incidentally, I have since learned how giraffes hug. I was telling Naomi's mom this story, and she happened to have some photos of giraffes hugging. They stand next to each other facing the same direction and sort of rub their necks together--sweet. I showed these to Jack, and then he wanted to know how elephants hug. No pleasing that kid.


Jack also enjoyed hanging out with Sabrina and "Kid Matthew" (to distinguish him from Uncle Matthew), and his parents enjoyed seeing their parents.
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Snow Activities

Jack also wanted to make a snowman and a snow angel (he had practiced "sand angels" at the park). It was very cold, so the snow was not good for snowman making, but we managed a little one. Jack requested raisins for the eyes and mouth and a carrot for the nose. We managed to pick some craisins out of the trail mix and locate a mini carrot!

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A final set of posts from Christmastime... We spent a few days up in Breck, where at least they had snow (unlike in Boulder). Jack was very excited to try skiing (actually, last year we forced the skis on him last year as he screamed, thinking maybe once they were on, he would calm down and try it out, but now luck). He was pretty cooperative with the application of cold-weather clothing. No pictures of the actual skiing, which was short-lived. He did fall over once, but it wasn't too upsetting. He kept sort of sitting back, which he thought was funny, but I couldn't hold him that way long. After a couple minutes, he calmly asked, "how do we buckle these off?" I told him he needed better skis and real boots, which I believe to be true--the street boots don't provide any support. So when we got back into the condo, he explained to Daddy, "I need better skis." The kid is a Reber after all, so it is never too early to blame the equipment. I considered the outing successful in that he was not upset and is still interested in trying skiing again with "better skis."
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Tuesday, February 8, 2011


We all had a great time at Christmas. For weeks leading up to Christmas, Jack was very consistent in requesting "the barn from Costco" from Santa. Costco gets that stuff in early and does not restock. But Santa must have received our email, because Jack did find a barn under the tree. The legos from Uncle Pate and garage from Grandma and Grandpa were also big hits. Jack "got" Santa in the sense that he figured he was a pretty cool thing. But for several mornings after Christmas, he wanted to check his stocking to see if Santa came, and sometimes when we would go out and arrive back home, he would say "maybe Santa came and filled my stocking." We kept telling him that Santa will not come back for a year. This is not really a time scale he understands (the future is "when its daytime" if it is currently night and "when it is nighttime" if it is day -- for example, this is when he plans to use the potty). But eventually he seemed to accept that Santa was not coming back for a while. He pretty quickly shifted to identifying things that he wants for his birthday.

I can't quite figure out where he got this from (certainly not his parents), but Jack suggested we send Santa a thank-you note! If we were better parents, we would have followed up on this impulse (and maybe even sent some to actual real people too), but alas...

More Christmas photos here:

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I Heart LA

Just came across these from early December. We had some friends staying at a nearby hotel and used their pool. Jack loves the pool. He is floating in "Owen," which is the name for all hippos (after the hippo in his book Owen and Mzee, a touching story of a hippo Owen who lost his mother in the Tsunami and becomes friends with a 100+ year-old tortoise Mzee). Jack made friends with some girls who were in town for acting classes (no, I am not kidding, it is LA after all).
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Saturday, February 5, 2011

SoCal Boy

Jack is showing real signs of being a Southern Californian.

First, he is ready to engage in discussions of traffic and routes. When we got in the car to head for the airport for Christmas, it was rush hour, so I was checking the traffic on my phone and discussing the route.
Jack pipes in: "take the 405"
Me: "there is a lot of traffic on the 405, I think we should take surface streets"
Jack: "you take the 405 to the airport"
I managed to over-rule him, but after about 10 minutes en route not on the 405, he says "this is not the 405." (also note the very CA use of "the" to denote a freeway, no, not a highway)

Second, he is confused about cold and snow. We had talked a lot about how there would be snow in Colorado, and then there was none at all in Denver or Boulder. We went up to Breckenridge, where there was plenty of snow, and it was REALLY cold. Ben put him in the carseat on a sub-zero day, and he says (emphatically and with a God-why-have-you-forsaken-me hand motion) "WHAT... IS ... MAKING ME SOOOO COLD?" Ben says, "It's the air, the air is cold." Later, he explained to me "Mommy, the air was making me so cold .... in the DAYTIME." He has the idea that you might be asked to put on a sweatshirt or jacket at night, but cold when the sun is out?!?! He also told me "Mommy, I need to take my hat off because it is getting snow on it."

I was also amused that they did a 2-week unit on cold weather at his preschool (which he started in January, more on that later). They discussed snow and ice and explained how you have to wear warm clothes and mittens. They also did pretend ice-scating, which looked a lot more fun that real ice skating. They even had some mittens and hats in the classroom so the kids could see what that was all about.

First Class Flyer

On our way to Denver for Christmas, we all got upgraded to first class (just a 2-hour flight, but I'll take it). Jack became obsessed with using the blanket and pillow provided, even though the pillow was pushing his head way forward in a way that could not have been comfortable. On the way back, we were back in coach and he wanted a pillow. I explained that you used to be able to get a pillow even in coach, but those days are over. He seemed to accept that.
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In the closet

For whatever reason, Jack and his friends like to hang out in the closet. The addition of headlamps makes this game even more fun!
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