Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Gonna Rock Down to Spadina Avenue

We just (well, two days ago) got back from a quick jaunt to Toronto to celebrate our seventh wedding anniversary.  In our pre-Ben days, Neil and I were in the habit of taking a little trip each year for our anniversary, but we took a little hiatus from that in Ben's early years.  This year we decided to take it up again, and we all had a great time.  We drove up after lunch on Saturday, got checked into the hotel in the late afternoon, and then hung out for a little before heading out for a nice Indian meal.  We spent much of Sunday down at Harborfront Center (sorry -- "Harbourfront Centre") enjoying a kid-oriented circus festival.  After nap, we took a very nice walk along College Street, meandering in and out of the U Toronto campus, and we ended up in Little Italy for dinner.  On Monday morning we went to the Royal Ontario Museum, which was great.  Ben was all primed to see dinosaurs, although he seemed a little disappointed that they only had skeletons on display, sans flesh, very unlike the colorful and talkative dinosaurs on Dinosaur Train.  He really enjoyed the display of minerals and rocks, and we got him some more rocks for his rock collection in the gift store.  He also had a great time "digging" for dinosaur bones using a wide paintbrush in a sandbox.  His Aunt Kathy will be proud.

The only serious trauma was trying to change his diaper in the restroom at the ROM.  He's had this thing for a few months now where he just freaks out when we change his diaper in a public restroom.  As soon as I try to lay him down, he siezes up with fear, red and shaking, and screams his lungs out.  It doesn't seem to be a behavior problem, or an attempt at manipulation; it's genuine terror.  And it's terribly inconvenient and embarrassing.  I'm usually able to distract and calm him with a story or song, but this time nothing worked.  As far as we can tell, he's afraid he's going to fall off -- never mind the fact that at home, on his own changing pad, he rolls and flips around like a fearless acrobat, so that we have to stay within arm's reach the entire time.  Anyway, there he was, beet-red and screaming bloody murder, and we're about to leave and get in the car and drive four hours home, so it's now or never for the diaper.  I tried everything -- distraction, talk-therapy, bribery, you name it -- and it was no go.  So I finally just plowed ahead, changed the darned thing, and tried to ignore all the people staring at me as if I were either a monster or the most incompetent parent they'd ever seen.  Oh, well -- can't win 'em all.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Happy Belated Flower Day and Mutlu YIllar!

Yesterday was special for at least two reasons.  For one, it was our first annual Flower Day.  Ben came up with this.  I was wearing a very old comfy tee shirt that my friend Carolyn got me umpteen billion years ago.  It used to have little fabric flowers that Carolyn had hand-stitched around the collar, very cute.  But they had fallen off one by one over the course of many years of laundry, and now only one lone flower remains, in the front and slightly off-center.  Ben looks at this and announces, "It's Flower Day!"  He went on to explain that on Flower Day, people give hugs, kisses, and back rubs, and this was followed by a quick demonstration.  All of this was entirely of his own invention.  Neil and I were practically dripping with delight.  We all engaged in the mandated rituals frequently throughout the remainder of the day.

Secondly, it was Fethiye's birthday.  Mutlu YIllar and much love, friend!

Another little tidbit from last week:  Ben at dinner said, "Tikki tikki tembo-no sa rembo-chari bari ruchi-pip peri pembo fell into the well!"  He got it all out perfectly the first time.  When he tried to say it again, he stumbled a bit, but still you gotta be impressed.  Ironically enough, he couldn't remember the name of Tikki Tikki's brother.