Monday, July 01, 2013

Parenting Month 32: Learning from elders

Two events this month.  We had our regularly scheduled grandparent line change where my mom left and S's parents came in for their long shift.  And we went on vacation!

This month was about learning by observation.  The Handy Manny phase is still going strong, and with him watching ye-ye (grandfather, yes, he gets the wrong one but it is the spirit that counts) and I make things.  It is really funny how he gets some real particular details just right (making motions of using pliers to hold nails for the first few taps, measuring out wood with a tape measure, turning screwdrivers).  He has also figured out that the power tools take the place of certain hand tools, but they have him a bit of a loss (he does not have any power tool toys).  Same with gardening as we have started a garden now that the frost has ended.


I wonder if there are any worms in here

But the real imitation comes from other kids.  Kids at day care.  And especially on vacation.

Our trip this summer was back to Chicago.  And T got to play with his cousin P' J. We had one day where we took  J and T out to play at a playground, then we took him to the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in Lincoln Park, Chicago.  There was a water exhibit to demonstrate the workings of rivers, irrigation, locks and dams.  The animal exhibit with live snakes and turtles.

Look, there is a snake in here

The winner was the butterfly garden.  Both J and T were pointing in every direction yelling "look! look!"


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And like a proper museum whose serves children, there was an area for the kids to burn energy.  T likes following J around (J is 2 1/2 years older).

I can see you!

We also went on another day to the Kohl's Children's Museum in Glenview.  And J and T even played drums together (J being the leader giving the count, since he is the experienced drummer of the two)

The cousins drum section

While this was a lot of fun for J to play being the big brother, this seemed to get old as our visit went on.  You can tell J was trying to make sure he was getting attention as he was talking near constantly and making sure we were paying attention to him.  It is not as hard as if there were two older kids who each want to have their own conversation topic as T does not really care what kind of attention he is getting as long as he is getting some.  And eventually, J started getting possessive of his toys and not wanting Nong T to play with them.


Cousins playing with blocks together

But T loves being around J.  T likes to express how happy he is by giving a roll call.  "Mommy and T", "Daddy and T", "Mommy and Daddy and T!".  Or an especially happy time is "Mommy and Daddy and Lau-Lau (grandma) and Ye-Ye (grandpa) and T!"  During this visit, J was added to the roll call  "Mommy and Daddy and J and T!"

Of course, there are other habits to pick up too.  Trying to whine and bargain like J.  We had lunch with four year old N and N taught T how to stick out his tongue.  And general screaming while running around in the house (we have to remind him 'no screaming - - - inside')

This is another fun trip to Chicago.  Running around the city with family.  Visiting old friends and experiencing new places.  And even the traditional running into random person along the way :-)
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