Monday, August 25, 2014

Parenthood Week 65 - 8/23/14

After lunch Diana headed out for her cousin’s wedding shower leaving Ollie and me together for the whole afternoon. Recently we got a toddler dish set that Ollie loved playing with. It included a small drying rack, plastic plates, cups and flatware. Ollie’s favorite part of the set was this miniature soap bottle. It’s a plastic hollow thing, so when you squeeze it a small puff of air came out the top. Feeling this puff of air blown in his face is one of Ollie’s favorite things.

I did it a couple times and each time I did it Ollie would giggle and squeal in delight. As soon as I put it down, he picked it up and then tried to put it in my hand. One of the most amazing things about Ollie recently is that he is requesting things. He’ll bring specific books and toys to us to read to him and play with him. This is a small but really meaningful way that he is communicating to us and of course especially with the books, I’m delighted to oblige him (the other night this resulted in us revisiting the same book almost ten times during his bedtime story time).

After puffing air into Ollie’s face for about five minutes I announced that it was time to go grocery shopping. I checked Ollie’s diaper bag, gave Buffy a hug and the two of us headed out.

It was an usually humid day, which usually means a storm is coming but the forecast only predicted a 20% chance of rain, so I didn’t think much of it.

One of my favorite memories growing up was going to the grocery store with my mom and this is probably why it’s one of my favorite things to do with Ollie. The grocery store is a wonderland of flavors, possibilities, joys and hidden treasures.

I talk to Ollie nonstop when we are in the store. I explain to him how to pick the best fruits and vegetables, I let him choose which kind of apple he prefers. We discuss the different cuts of meat and explore the boxes full of different staples.

At this point Ollie rarely talks back so often people who don’t realize that I’m talking to my son think I’m crazy. Probably people who do know I’m talking to my son also think I’m crazy too. The thing is that people don’t really talk in the grocery store unless they are on their phone or with their spouse, which is rare.

I don’t care if people think I’m crazy, I love talking to my son about food. Every so often, between the crazy looks, someone gives me an approving smile. Sometimes being a little crazy is exactly what your kid needs.

As I checked out, I realized that the sky had turned black. As I neared the exit, I saw a crowd of people at the door looking out at the downpour. I grew up near Seattle and it rained a lot but it was mostly pretty painless mists or steady rain. When it rains in the summer in Chicago, it’s like being in a shower, actually no, it’s more like being dumped on with buckets of water. It’s the kind of rain that would soak you completely going twenty yards from the exit of a store to your car. These rains don’t usually last that long which is why most people were waiting it out.

Here was my problem. It was almost Ollie’s nap time. If I waited this storm out, then we might get home past Ollie’s nap time which could result in a melt down and Ollie having a harder time getting to sleep. In rare cases when we are a late getting him down for a nap time, he skips a nap which results in a cranky baby for the rest of the day.

Or we could get soaked and I could get him home in time for his nap.

I chose the latter.

I pulled Ollie out of the shopping cart seat figuring that it would be safer for me to run holding Ollie then push him quickly in the cart. I held him close to me with one arm, positioned the shopping cart behind me, planning to pull it with my other hand.

I looked down at him and he looked up at me quizzically. I managed to find a smile and told him that we were going to get a little wet. As I ran through the parking lot telling Ollie that this wasn’t going to count as a bath, I realized that maybe this wasn’t such a good idea.

I threw the cart into the rear bumper of my car, and plopped Ollie into his car seat. I got the groceries in the car, put away the cart and went to the back seat to check on Ollie.

We were both soaked.

He looked at me nervously as I took off his shirt (no shirt is better for warmth than wet cotton) and I dried him off. After a couple tummy raspberries, I got him giggling and we headed home.

The drive home was insane. I could barely see through sheets of water. Getting Ollie and the groceries into the house was an ordeal, but we got back in. One of the few things that gets Buffy nervous is thunderstorms and she looked at me critically when we got in the door wondering why we weren’t home at a time like this.

Buffy followed me closely as I changed, got Ollie changed and heated up some milk. As I started feeding Ollie his bottle in his nursery, Buffy settled down in the center of the room watching Ollie intently.

After hearing the sound of Ollie sucking air through the empy bottle, he pushed the bottle aside, and replaced it with his thumb. After a couple minutes of rocking, he was out. I placed him carefully in his crib and starting walking out the room. I whispered to Buffy to come with me. She stood up and hesitated. She looked at Ollie, looked at me and then after a couple seconds she followed me out of the room.

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