Friday, April 07, 2006

Gabriel's preschool pal

Poor Julian threw up last night's meager dinner of rice this morning, so I kept him home from Tonya's. What a delightful little boy he is when he's not constantly being bugged by his older brother! He played and sang nonstop all morning, never once shrieking, playing so well that he even let me lie in bed for an hour and a half while I tried to fight off a cold.

As we were arriving home from picking Gabriel up from preschool, in the context of attempting to probe him again about friends and playmates at "new preschool," Gabriel volunteered, "There are so many beautiful girls there!" Oh really? Then: "yeah, like Kenda. She's really beautiful!" I guess he played with a little girl named Kenda today -- apparently I've been focusing too much on him playing with other little boys in his class! Kenda is the first name he's come up with from anyone in his new school.

Gabriel and Julian were both really good today, except for two timeouts for Gabriel that devolved into full-out battle. Here's how it goes: he doesn't do something I ask (usually to leave Julian alone), even after a firm warning, backtalks ("Zip it, Mom!"), gets put on timeout, doesn't stay, gets carried to his room and warned that if he comes out, he'll get locked in. Today as I was carrying him upstairs, he was flailing and kicking and trying to hit me with a free arm, so I had to reposition him, and in the chaos, I dropped him. He hit the edge of a carpeted step with his face, just under his eye, causing a nasty rugborn sort of scrape on his face. He was pretty upset, but after blotting it with a cold washcloth and calming him down, I still made him stay in his room, then he refused to apologize to come out, extending his stay. Even when he's genuinely distraught from being confined to his room, he shouts out defiantly, "You're not the boss Mom! I'm not going to play with you!" with the firmest angriest tone he can summon.

Not long after we got past that, the whole scenario replayed itself. What happened to consistency teaching kids that you mean it and they don't repeat the bad behavior?!

During Julian's nap (and mine), Gabriel made another ice cream factory, this time with a lighthouse (inspiration courtesy of a few Thomas the Tank Engine stories). I really like these structures, they're almost artistic, not a word often used in this household.

Later, the whole structure got knocked over and the blocks were everywhere, including in the stairwell. After Julian's curtailed early dinner of mashed potatoes (thankfully he held it down), Dave set Julian to the task of putting the blocks away. Which Julian happily turned into a game of trying to toss the blocks into the box. Perfect job: it serves a real purpose, and kept him entertained for some time! He was so cute doing this. Even when he's not feeling well, and even though he's prone to 2-year-old impossibleness, he's a constant delight. He sang for hours today.

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