Sunday, August 29, 2010

Cheese is like Beggin' Strips for babies.

With fall coming Oliver has been working on his new fall sports. I imagine him at a track and field facility with a ton of other babies in sweat bands, waiting to compete in the bottle throwing discus and/or choking hazard treasure hunt. I'm pretty sure he'd place, if not go for the gold in most events. Possible events he would be good at:

-Competitive eating. The kid can throw down a container of puffs like it's nothing. Every morning, he eats more than I do for breakfast.
-Consecutive butt bouncing. Put music on and watch him bounce on his butt so high that you think he'll fall over.  Always a crowd pleaser.
-Speed dropping. Set him up in a high chair at a restaurant and give him things to play with. Time how fast he can throw them all down. Bonus points for distance.

Lest you think I am so absorbed in my child, I admit that there are events in which he would fail. Like sitting still. Having a predictable nap schedule. Diaper target shooting. (Let's just say his accuracy leaves something to be desired.)

We are working awfully hard these days on walking. I tried to discourage him from crawling because I liked that he would stay put so I could go get a glass of water. But walking? Walking is different. I figure if he's already mobile, he may as well be walking. It'd save his pants a lot of wear and tear. It'd save my back from having to carry him when we're on cement or other unforgiving surfaces. It'd save his hands from getting (as) dirty. It seems like a winning situation for all parties involved, so Jared & I sit on the floor and help him practice.

All of the necessary skills are in place, but he lacks the ambition and bravery. If we can distract him he will walk a couple of steps before dropping down to his hands and knees. If he is staring open mouthed at a TV screen, I can let go of his hands and he stands on his own. But the second he realizes we aren't helping him? Nope. No way. Do you even realize how scary it is to be that tall, MOM?! Gosh.

And then, almost always, I resort to something stupid. I try to reason with him. I'll bribe him. He'll be standing and cruising along the couch and I'll say something ridiculous like,

"Hey, Oliver! You know, since you're walking by the couch.... well, you could walk over here to me. It's practically the same thing. It'd be fun, I promise. I'll give you some cheese if you can walk to me!"

I don't know why I do it. Why I try to reason with a baby. Its like trying to teach a room full of golden retrievers to fold hospital corners on the beds. They're just so darn happy that you're paying attention and talking to them that the most they can do is wag their tails with that stupid happy expression on their faces. They want so badly to please you, really they do, but, What!? A treat? FOOD FOOD FOOD FOOD FOOD.

It's sad to say, but as intelligent as Oliver is..  He is still, after all, a baby, and his reaction is no different. He usually sees my enthusiasm and starts doing his little booty shaking baby jig. Hey, mom! You're playing with me! You're trying to get me to do something, so I'll dance for you! How is this? Do you like this mom? Huh? Huh? DO YOU?! DO YOU LIKE THIS MOM!!?! I AM DANCING FOR YOU, MOM!

And then by the time I start bribing him with cheese and he hears that magical CH word he starts furiously signing "more! more! more!" - just to be sure that I understand that he does, in fact, like cheese and wants to eat some right this very second.

I make a few more (unsuccessful) attempts to get him to walk. And then I get up, and start slicing him some cheese.

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