Yup, I'm confused. I am wondering how a little boy can be so cute, mischievous and crabby at the same time? He's so sweet and loveable, always. But some times he really makes us speechless. We went to the Children's Museum yesterday and James was very excited when we told him we were going to see the dinosaurs.
I think this was our first outing without the stroller. He's perfectly capable of walking around, but its so nice to have somewhere to put my purse, our coats, his toys/things, and lunch bag. He's a big boy, definitely.
It went very well! He loved the exhibit.
Dinosaur egg nest.
This is James standing a distance away from the dinosaur, it was electronic- moving and making dinosaur noises.
James and Jim crawled through the volcano cave. James caught Jim by the arm and tried to "help" him out. Haha.
We tried to get James to watch the dinosaurs up close, but no. He struggled and then ran away. We tried!
Look behind you!
Digging for fossils.
Jim tried the slide too.
James even liked the ant tunnels. There is a section of the Museum where you can put on an ant costume (James refused that part) and crawl through the tunnels. It was a little scary for me, not being to see James at all times, but a Mom comforted me and told me that there was only one exit and we were sitting right at it.
This looked too much like a spider for Jim's taste!
In the "jungle" James crawled through a turtle shell. He wouldn't look up for the picture.
Exploring a beaver dam/hut.
This was the last play area before the meltdowns. James and a few other boys were working cooperatively to get these play bricks up and down the conveyor belts. There was a crew on the level below who were using a crank to get the bricks up the vertical belt and then James worked fast to get them to the other boys, who were working to get the bricks back down a chute. They were VERY intense.
At one point the bricks got backed up and a boy yelled, very worried, "There isn't anyone downstairs! Stop the bricks!" We took James downstairs to "work" but James had lost interest at this point.
He saw the water tubes, floating balls, and boats. We moved on.
I know we have many pictures of James in these cute little aprons at the water play area, but he's just so cute.
This was the area where we had our first meltdown. I was only slightly embarrassed as I carried James away from the area. The problem was that he wouldn't share or take turns with these boats, so we just left.
I didn't take pictures at the Museum's kitchen/cooking area. James was excited to get in there but then had the same problem of sharing and just being generally happy with what he could play with. We moved on to the Grocery Store. Ahhhh! A cart!
Then came the crabbiness when he told us he was hungry. Fine. McDonald's is (too) conveniently close and its become our routine after visiting the Museum. Well, the food just couldn't come fast enough. Jim had to return to the car for his lunch bag (James needed his regular cup, you see) and it felt like an eternity before we had food in front of James. I sat with James patiently at a table, waiting to order food and trying to keep him entertained. I was really embarrassed by James' behavior- he's not usually the whiny kid who cries and is bratty.
I just know that there are tricks to distract him, or amuse him. My thinking is that I have to be smarter than James, one step ahead of him, predicting and adjusting. I know that he does well with firm boundaries- like at bedtime our struggle is not just taking Blankie to bed now but his insisting that he needs to sleep with an orange, a ball, books, etc too. As we're going to the potty and brushing our teeth, I start repeating with him and laying out a plan of what he's taking to bed and "That's it." And I'll also stress that we're reading "Just TWO books" and usually he'll comply with all this if I put the ideas in his head. Boundaries. I'm always trying to do what's best for James in the long run, and not just give in to his demands or pouts. Giving in is just a quick fix!
We're not perfect parents but we are trying to do the best that we can. I know I have my struggles and Jim has his with James. James acts differently for us. Its like he knows which buttons he can press with each of us! Mischevious :)
Here's a cute part of yesterday-
James pretty much refused his nap. I was going to give up. I had wanted to lie down for a nap myself so I asked James if he wanted to cuddle with me. Yup. So we laid down and looked at each other. I grabbed my iPhone (never too far away these days) and snapped this picture. A few minutes later, after I convinced him to close his eyes too, I saw him drifting off to sleep. I think we got in an hour nap. I think it was the first time we've napped together, since maybe he was a baby? Maybe not even then because I was always afraid of rolling over on him or dropping him.
My Sweet Baby Nene!