Thursday, June 17, 2010


Last night Rowan and Kemper attended an overnight out at school.  This is the first time they've slept away from home without mommy and daddy.  They have been talking about the sleepover for weeks, and could barely contain their excitement yesterday while they waited for carpool.  They were a bit confused about how much stuff they needed to bring; somehow they got it in their minds that they'd be staying at school for three days.  Rowan packed his backpack the night before.  When I checked it the next morning, I found he'd packed three pair of pants, one pair of clean underwear, and a pair of socks.  For a single night.  No shirt, no pajamas.  I helped him choose a more appropriate set of clothes, and sent them off.

Morgan and I dropped Cannon off with a friend, and went to test out a few canoes.  We're thinking of buying one, and this seemed like a good opportunity to put them in the water.  We then went to dinner, and collected Cannon.  It was a very pleasant evening.

This morning it is so quiet in the house.  No fights over Bionicle parts or who sits where on the sofa.  No nagging from me about getting ready for school.  No one has stolen anything from the baby.  All in all, it's very peaceful.  And while I miss the boys, I have to confess I'm glad to know they're ready for sleepovers.  They should do them more often.

Friday, June 11, 2010


Cannon doesn't have the privilege of listening to many "children's" songs.  With Rowan and Kemper, I indulged them a fair bit, mostly with things that I found minimally offensive or outright enjoyed.  Dan Zanes, Laurie Berkner, Jazz for Kids, Tom Chapin, and a few collections of folk songs for kids.  They of course also had Raffi, which to me was barely tolerable, along with some classics from The Sound of Music and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.  And we occasionally managed to put some of our own tunes into the mix.

But while I occasionally still put Dan Zanes on, we're mostly doing "adult" music.  Johnny Cash is fairly popular ("Folsom Prison Blues" is a particular favorite), as are "Jumping Jack Flash", "Mexico", and "Slip Kid"  just to name a few.

Not long ago, the older boys watched the movie "The Nightmare Before Christmas".  There were two song in particular they liked, so I bought them on iTunes:  "This is Halloween" and "What's This?".  Collectively they refer to them as the Halloween Songs, and request them frequently.  Cannon apparently is also a fan; I was surprised not long ago when I heard him shout from the back seat, "howeensong"!

Another of his favorites (actually this is the only other song he requests by name) is what the boys refer to as "Mexican" but is actually called "Mexican Radio".  This is another iTunes purchase, a blast from the past indulgence of mine.  I don't know about anyone else, but I loved this video and was always thrilled when it came on MTV back in the day.  (Sorry, but this video won't let you embed it here.)

I find it very amusing that my kids beg to hear this song over and over.  But perhaps my favorite thing is when we're in some random store and Cannon will start clapping and bopping to the music.  He'll say, "Like song!"  And when the song ends, so does the dance.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010


There are certain things that Cannon does that Rowan and Kemper never did.  The older boys never took off their diapers.  I heard horror stories of kids ripping off a dirty diaper and smearing the contents all over their cribs, walls, and bodies.  There was not a single incident of this with them.  Not that there has technically been one with Cannon either, but if he's not wearing something with a snap crotch, he will definitely try to get the diaper off or loose.  Which is why he almost always has restricted access.

Rowan and Kemper had baths maybe once each week.  Not only was bath time a nightmare, it irritated their eczema.  Cannon would live in the bath if that were an option.  I can't even say the word in conversation without him chirping, "bath! bath! bath!" and running full speed into the bathroom.  For that matter, I can't get into the shower without him either having a full on fit or getting in with me.

With the twins, I never had problems with them using writing implements in a problematic way.  Not so lucky with Cannon.  His latest activity involves pens, sometimes Sharpies, and our flat screen computer monitor.  This is not a good combination, I can assure you.  So far we've managed to prevent him from ruining our new kitchen cabinets, but I expect this won't remain the case for long.  Kitchen table?  It has pen marks.

"Put them away", you might suggest.  I've done that.  The problem is that his older brothers don't seem to be able to ever put anything away when they're finished with it.  Which brings me to another difference.

Cannon is a cleaner-upper.  He continues to amaze me with this.  After I change his diaper (which I do on the floor, on a changing pad), he folds the changing pad as best he can and puts it back on the shelf where I keep it. He will then pick up the bundled dirty diaper and trot into the kitchen to throw it away.  He'll dump out a plastic container of crayon pieces, draw for a while, then put them all back in the box.  Then he'll put the box back in the cabinet where he got it.  When we're done reading books before bed, he puts them back on the shelf.  Honestly, it makes me wonder where he came from, since no one in our house puts anything back where it belongs.

The big boys, on the other hand, are complete slobs.  I don't force them to clean their room; I figure, if they can't find anything, then they'll have to live with that.  My rule is, if there isn't a clear and safe path to the beds, then I don't come in to kiss them goodnight.  They have to settle either for a kiss blown from the doorway, or going upstairs on their own.  Currently there is so much crap on their floor that I can barely get in to put away clean clothes.  But I've sworn I won't clean it again.  Maybe I'll strike a deal - I'll clean it up, but I can get rid of anything I deem no longer useful.  I wonder if they'd go for that?

Well, here's hoping Cannon sticks with this particular attribute.  It would sure keep my life marginally easier as he gets more independent.