Thank goodness for school. Without it, days like today would be the norm, which means, two boys together all day.
We had a fun day with grandparents, a day that we planned not to do too much except have Bonne Maman and Papa Paul take the boys out somewhere local this afternoon. But the boys have been very rowdy together, fighting, getting hysterical, bothering Katrina, and generally being a big pain. By mid-morning, we'd all already had enough of them. I know all siblings fight and play rowdily together, but are girl/boy siblings and sisters quite so loud and violent as brothers?
So I took Julian with me to the gym while grandparents had a very pleasant morning with Gabriel and Katrina. I was nervous that the boys would be impossible on their afternoon outing with grandparents (a short bicycle trip to a nearby court that they could ride around) but fortunately they were really good.
Later, though, they were horrible together in the backyard, running toy trucks into things and each other, throwing rocks and toys, tearing leaves off our trees. Gabriel got another hefty set of timeouts/cool-offs/banishments/whatever you want to call them in his room today, starting as a consequence for some offense (e.g. punching Julian), and quickly getting escalated when he's unbearably rude to me in response.
Happily, my informing the boys yesterday that saying "stupid" means "I'm stupid" has resulted in a drastic reduction of the usage of that word. Unhappily, now "stupid" has merely been replaced with the most derogatory alternative term they can think of, amusingly enough, "pesky." Though I know that Gabriel's intent is no less venomous when he insults me with "Pesky Mom!" it just doesn't have the same impact. To me, anyway. He gets just as much time in his room.
Tomorrow Katrina is going to daycare, and we'll do a bigger outing with the boys again. After today, I'm wondering if we're leaving behind the wrong child.