Fun, fun, fun, exhaustion, and more fun

The past few days have been really fun and exhausting. Fun because of Hollis. And, you guessed it, exhausting because of Hollis.

Here's some examples of the fun we've been having:

In addition to these little gems, today at a mom's group meet up to organize a book club (that's another post that I'll get to soon) at a local coffee shop Hollis struck toddler gold when he discovered an Elmo toy.

"Mamamamamamamamamamamamamama!" he squealed, "MOMO!!!!" and pointed at the toy while bouncing on his toes and tensing every muscle in his body.

He got the attention of 11 mothers and several of their children with that little happy dance. I was so proud. And the cuteness didn't even come close to wearing off the fifth time, I swear to God. (Seriously the cutest thing I've seen him do in weeks!)

The exhausting part comes in because I'm struggling to keep our time together, and this house in general, filled with YESes. He zips around like a maniac on a moment's notice and starts grabbing, pulling, pushing, eating, tearing, opening, closing, and generally manhandling everything and anything he can get his hands on. Of course, the NOs ensue and I hate it. I rack my brain for YESes: Here, eat this cheese, not that gas-key. Here, tear this catalog, not this book. Here, push Mommy, not Digby.

I don't punish Hollis and so far it's working great. It's about molding our world to fit his in a reasonable, safe way, but boy, lately my fuse has been shorter than usual and I find myself tempted to shout and think of punitive ways to curb his enthusiasm. I've been catching myself before the act, but the thoughts are there and I feel like this is just the beginning. I have years ahead of me of pushed boundaries and little people flat out ignoring me because they can. I feel like I should get a game plan in place before the play is called. Even if I fall flat on my face at least then I might have a better chance of success than if I just try to wing it, right??

I dunno. It's exciting and special and I love that Hollis is growing up. I love finding famous bobbleheads in the shower and Elmo strewn about the house. As we enter these days of newfound independence and differntiation I'm going to try to keep my eye on the prize of emotional cognition and, ultimately for me, a stronger bond with my son for when things are really tough (high school, anyone??). Oh. My. God. I mean, how does anyone ever figure that one out?

Housekeeping note: Do you have me in your blogroll and you're not in mine? Let me know and I'll fix that right away. I only know of a handful of blogs who list me, but that's because of the Lijit widget and repeat visits to those sites. Thanks!


  1. Jessica, I get you so much! Yeah, my house is total madness... I let my kids do what they want, short of play fighting with knives. I mean, literally. My 4 year old shredded a few magazines in the paper shredder the other day and I let him bring it upstairs to play with. He played constuction with billions of pieces of shredded paper and his trucks. I mean, he was happy and busy... so why should I argue with that? It is tiring and my house looks like a permanent daycare centre... oh well...
    I love the Elmo/Horse position. Don't think I've tried that one, yet! ;)
    And Hollis' little dance must have been so darn cute!

  2. I think a lot of poeple are struggling with the discipline issue. Have you seen this article: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/22/fashion/22yell.html (caused quite a controversy judging by the comments). My husband and I are talking about having children, and this issue comes up. And I don't have an answer. It's a difficult one.

    PS on housekeeping note - I have you on my blogroll, but only because I like to read your blog (not because of any expectant reciprocity)

  3. Hmm...good luck with avoiding the "no" word--from a mom of three grown boys. I found it to be an essential part of my vocablulary, more and more with each year that passed!

    I don't think I see Wrestling With Retirement in your list... hope you'll come check me out!

  4. 2-year-olds are hard.

    I have a 4 1/2-year-old and we also don't use punishments. And I have to say, in general it's gotten easier as she's gotten older. Because she can actually be sort of reasoned with now. She doesn't yell for no discernible reason like she used to. She remembers stuff better and can communicate better.

    Although the teen years will, I'm sure, be a whole 'nother ballgame, it's not necessarily true that what you're doing now won't continue to work. Or that it will become more challenging all the time.

  5. My last blog post is about the Best Punishment Ever...lol. But my kids are older, way older.
    I don't have a blogroll but I do have your button in my button slide show. =)