Monday, July 28, 2008

The Boundary Push

The Rutledge crew had a bit of a challenging weekend, led by our twin terrors Owen & Gus. Since our return from the Kentucky trip Amy & I have been trying to get the boys back between the guardrails so to speak with regular bedtimes, more of a summer routine, etc. The weekend was a contest of wills with 2 three year-olds pushing the limits of what they can and cannot do. Minute things like which shoes they would agree to wear, how much noise their parents would tolerate at the dinner table, and what books they wanted to read at nap time became issues of war and peace. I share these things with you not to whine -- ok, maybe a little bit -- but also so our readers who are also going through this same thing with their kids can relate and also so those of you that have already paid your dues with rearing children can say, "Ha, ha! Been there, done that. Glad we're not you."

To add to the boundary pushing issues Gus has decided that he is too scared to sleep. The kid absolutely melted down on the way home from church yesterday, ranting mad at me for putting him in the left car seat instead of the right car seat -- an issue on par with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. What he really needed was a nap because he was truly exhausted. When we got him home Amy and I proceeded to battle him for 2 hours to get some sleep. Unfortunately he caught his second wind and then claimed that there were noises and monsters that were preventing his slumber. Last night it was the same thing -- he was so wound up that he couldn't sleep and again the fears of a three year-old were rolling around in his head and keeping him up late.

So Amy and I are treating it with a combination of kid gloves and hammer -- reassuring him that there are no monsters in his room (with teeth anyway) and then finally walking away at a certain point when we think he is doing more stalling that anything else. Ah the joys...

The weekend had its good points too. Amy & I took the kids to a birthday party for one of the boys' in Owen & Gus's preschool class. While frankly kids birthday parties can be exercises in excess -- more pomp and circumstance done for the parents to compete with each other and show off than they are for the kids -- this party was nothing like that. It was very refreshing. There were 4 families total at the house, each of us with children at about the same age so we were all at that same place and stage in life. All the dads were engaged with helping take care of the kids so I felt right at home. (Plus Jeff, the dad, had a great selection of ales from which to choose -- always a bonus for us dads.) Amy got to connect with the moms which is something she doesn't often get the chance to do. So all in all that ended up being the highlight of the weekend. Who would have thought?

So this week we will be treated to a visit by GJ mid-week. The boys are excited. Amy is preparing to sell a load of kids' clothes at the multiples club sale this weekend. And the rest of the time we will be chasing away monsters and trying to get little boys to get some rest so their parents can do the same!


Our friend Tracy is an amateur photographer and got some great shots of the kids playing at the birthday party. This was my favorite one of Tess -- she looks so studious.

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