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(March 16, 2009)

small boy buried under pillowsLet's start with the temporal orientation: it's now the middle of March. Theron will be three in June, so he's 2.75 years old now. Time flies when you're on the run.

A few weeks ago, Theron woke up crying. The Beautiful Woman got out of bed and went into his room. He was just sitting up in bed, so she asked: "Did you have a scary dream?" He said, "Yes." Then he snuggled up against his mother and went right back to sleep. So, Theron has now had his first official nightmare.

I suppose it's a milestone of sorts.

He can now open door knobs. This is a somewhat alarming development. Even more alarming is his newfound ability to unlock doors - both the door to the garage, and the door to the back yard. Fortunately, the front door has a deadbolt that's about eye level on me - too high for him to reach. Unfortunately, he's quite capable of pulling a chair over if he really has a mind to get to it. He hasn't done that yet, but I suppose it's only a matter of time.

New Games
Theron has developed several new games. He will occasionally climb into his crib (which we haven't moved out of his room because we don't have anywhere else to put it) and jump up and down. When he does, he sometimes likes to have pillows thrown on top of him. Recently, though, he's taken to asking me to build him a Meerkat Tunnel.

The name comes from The Lion King 1 + 1/2, which Theron refers to as "The Meerkat movie." He's never seen the original, but then I consider the direct-to-video sequel to be a substantially better movie. (If you haven't seen it, give it a look - you may need to watch the original again as well, in order to get a feel for just how subversive the sequel is.)

A Meerkat Tunnel is created by lining up pillows against the walls of the crib, and then propping other pillows across the top of them. The crib gives the whole thing some structural support, and the side-pillows hold up the top. Theron then crawls around inside it (and giggles).

Theron has also started burping - or, more accurately, pretending to burp - for comic effect. I blame Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius (a.k.a. "Robot Dog Movie") for this one: one of Jimmy's inventions is a soda which provides a guaranteed one burp per sip. At the end of the film, Jimmy's parents down about half a can of it.

Finally, he's started... how do I describe this? We don't really have a name for it. I suppose I'd call it the Huffing-And-Puffing game. Basically, he purses his lips and blows at one of us - basically the same gesture you'd use to blow a candle out. We react by crying out and falling down, as if we'd been blown right off our feet. Theron's fair about it; if one of us blows at him, he flails his arms, spins around, and falls over too. He mostly does this at bedtime; I have no idea how he came up with it.

Irish Fest
Last weekend, we took the boy (and my wife's parents) down to the North Texas Irish Festival*. Theron enjoyed it, and afterwards we turned him over to my parents (who met us down there) to spend the night. This gave us a completely Snorkleberry-free Sunday, which really should have been much more relaxing than it actually was.

His two favorite parts of the festival were the petting zoo and the dog houses. I'm including some pictures and video clips below, so you can see what I mean:

Snuggling a piglet at the petting zoo
Dances With Goats I
Dances With Goats II
Examining a doghouse
A Doghouse to explore

Potty Training, Part 2
I mentioned in the last entry that we're (kind of, sort of, maybe) starting to potty train the Podling. This is going more or less like we expected: every once in a while, he manages to go to the bathroom on an actual toilet. Other than that, he's still in diapers, and very little has changed.

We are not worried about this; boys generally aren't ready for toilet training until three, and we still have a couple of months to go, there. (A couple of months may not seem like a very long time, but it's a pretty decent fraction of his Life So Far.) It'll come when it comes, and until then we're not going to waste any stress on it.

Fixing the cough
Theron has, for the last week and half, been waking us up by coughing in the middle of the night. We'd put him down to bed, and he'd be down for an hour or two; then the cough would start, and he'd cough for the rest of the night. This persisted regardless of what medication - or combination of medicines, - we gave him; of whether we ran the air filter, the humidifier, or both; and of which blankets and pillows we gave him.

Finally, after this had kept me awake for two nights in a row, the Beautiful Woman called the pediatrician to ask for bigger, badder medications. (This delay is because we were already using something that the pediatrician had prescribed the last time she'd seen Theron.) I suggested that if the pediatrician wanted to see Theron before prescribing anything, then she should come over to our house at about eleven o'clock at night, when he actually has symptoms.

The pediatrician gave us two things, one for the cough and one for allergies. (She did not feel compelled to come visit us.)

A day later the weather changed, and it rained for three days straight. Theron has been sleeping through the night, but now I have no idea if that's because of the medication, or because the rain washed all the allergins out of the air.

The Dangers of Bathtub Crayons

Hang and Drop

A Somewhat Morose Cowboy


Hiding from Zombies
Working on a puzzle

Singing "Bob The Builder"



"More more pillows?"

Jack in the Box gets stuck


* ...A surprising amount of which is actually Scottish, but it's best not to look too closely at that.