On the babysitting tip our Friday outing to the movies went swimmingly. Noah was SO excited to see Nana and Pop Pop that he didn’t care a lick that we left. It helped that we told him several times in the days leading up to their visit that he was going to spend special time with Nana and Pop Pop alone and that Mama and Daddy would be gone for a little bit but would be home in time for bed. He had a great time – and they even brought him a very cool Radio Flyer tricycle. The movie however stunk. Lady in the Water was seriously disappointing. It was overdone, unfocused and convoluted. I could go on, but I’ll spare you. Before Mark’s Dad and his wife went home she repeatedly told us how lucky we were that Noah was such a good boy. At one point I interjected that though we were indeed lucky that I thought we could take a little credit for his behavior. It was probably an unnecessary statement, but I was just feeling like “Hey, I work hard every day to make sure he’s a good boy.” Silly, I guess. But by saying how easy he was to deal with I felt like she was belittling my “job.”
Saturday morning we took Noah to the playground that sits underneath the Market Frankford subway El. From there you can watch the trains pass and thus it’s been dubbed the “choo choo park.” It was drizzling when we left the house, but we decided to go anyway because Noah needed to run off some energy. Needless to say we got stuck in major downpour and soaked to the bone. But Noah had the time of his life. Since we were already wet we let him splash around in all the puddles, at one point even sitting in one. He was lovin every second of it. I wish I could have recorded it. Afterwards we came home, showered up, had lunch and then put the boy down for a nap. I headed to Old Navy and discovered a massive sale – all the clearance stuff was an additional half off. We all scored some badly needed new duds.
We left for Seaside Park on Sunday morning. With no traffic it only took us an hour and half to get there. The weather was grey so we went straight to Mark’s Aunt Jean’s place to have lunch and see family before we checked into our Motel. Over the next two days we got to see and spend some time with 19 members of the extended McCormack clan. Since Mark’s mother Muriel passed away we don’t have a permanent connection to that side of the family, in part because of the distance. This yearly trek to Seaside is the only time of year we get to see some of these folk, and it’s important to us that Noah feel connected to his extended family. Everyone was blown away by how much he had grown. And all the compliments on his behavior and temperament really made me proud. My favorite comment was made by Aunt Maureen. We were watching Noah rejoicing in the sand and the surf, dancing on the edge of the waves with Mark when Maureen said “He sure is a happy soul, isn’t he?” He sure is.
Noah had a love-hate relationship with the ocean. On Sunday I nearly broke my neck preventing him from running directly into the choppy sea. I’d block him from going in too far and he’d run around me laughing manically. I felt like I was playing football – all that tackling and throwing myself sideways. Eventually he took a couple of headers into the water, coming up with a mouth full of water and sand, saying “all done, all done.” On Monday I was a bit sad but grateful that he was feeling less daring. He and the waves played a game of chase, he’d run in and get his feet wet and run back as the waves started to come in. And the sand, that boy loves the sand. He was so covered in it we could have easily lost him. I'd love to post pictures but though we took our digital camera along, we did not however take the damn battery.
So our trip was divine, if too short. Far too short. But certainly better than not having gone at all. It made me hunger for more sand, more surf, and more family time. And luckily August will be filled to the brim with it all.
Yesterday Noah and I went to visit Tripp’s new little brother Finn. Though Noah was excited to see the baby, he was seriously out of sorts during our visit. I blame part of it on the beach trip sleep deficit, and the other part on his clinginess. He really lost it when I held the baby. But I gather that’s a normal reaction. I asked Holly what it was like to have two. She said she’d been so worried about how much hard work a new baby was, but now she realized that having a toddler was FAR harder. Mark’s cousin Stephanie told me at the beach “The older one always demands the most attention.” And thinking of a few other mothers with two, I guess I’d have to agree. I hope to one day be able to decide for myself.
It’s been a busy morning of grocery shopping and Tot swim and I have a bunch of crap I need to cram into this quickly diminishing naptime. Wish me luck.
Oh, a quick Noah bit- Mark and I noticed the other day that he’s started contemplating questions, pausing and saying “Um…” It cracks me up. He also keeps calling Mark by his name, and saying it in the tone of voice I use when I’m calling to Mark from another part of the house. I’ve explained that Mama can call Daddy Mark but Noah calls Daddy Daddy. To which he just repeats “Daddy Daddy” right before pausing, giving a devilish grin and saying loudly “Mark…”