4 years ago, I was blessed when Max was born and forever changed my life. It’s been quite an amazing ride as he’s gone from a helpless newborn, to a curious, smart and loving 4 year old. As I look back at old pictures of him, it’s hard to remember just how small he was, and how special those times were. I was petrified, and anxious back then and didn’t take the time to truly appreciate it.
One fond memory I have was when Max was a few weeks old. He woke up around 2AM, and wouldn’t go back to sleep. He wasn’t crying, he was just awake and alert and didn’t want to sleep. I took him downstairs, and turned on the lights on the Christmas tree. I remember him laying on my chest as I reclined back. We both just sat there and looked at the lights on the tree. As cool as a Christmas tree is to a guy in his 30’s, it must have been amazing for Max. While I love the fact that he is now a strong, and ever growing boy, I miss those days when he would fit nicely in my arms.
I still like to pick him up and carry him from time to time. He’s 40+ pounds now, so I can only do it for a few minutes, but I just love the way it makes me feel. I love that bond, and how it feels when he wraps his little arms around me. I used to love when I was a kid, and I would fall asleep in the car or on the couch and my dad would throw me over his shoulder and carry me in. I have same the same fondness for it now, that I did back then.
So while we have a perfectly good and comfortable couch, if Max walked up and plops himself down on my lap when he watches TV, I’m perfectly fine with that. He seems to get bigger every day, and I know before long, he won’t want to or won’t be able to sit on my lap anymore. I’ll miss it, but will always have the good times to look back upon.
Last week, Max was busy helping Nana bake pies for Thanksgiving. She mentioned that Max really liked playing with the dough. He has regular store bought “Playdoh”, but I thought it would be fun to make our own. Since Max likes mixing ingredients, and projects in general, it seemed like something right “up his alley”. So I did a quick search online, and most of the recipes were pretty much the same. Flour, water, oil and cream of tartar. So we went ahead and mixed up a batch. Took only about 5 minutes to finish, which was kind of disappointing. Max was getting into the stirring, and before we knew it, we were done. So I split the batch into two and got out some food coloring. We made one batch green, the other red.
One thing I noticed is that store bought Playdoh colors are much brighter. They seem to start with a base color of white, which makes the overall coloring lighter. The homemade stuff is more of a tan color, so the colors are darker and not as appealing to the eye. Max still loved it though. The 2nd thing I noticed is what a mess it makes. My hands were green all day. Especially around my cuticles and in the ridges of my fingers. Later on, I read a recommendation that the food coloring should be added to the water you add to the flour. Doh! Will have to try that next time. Also need to see if there is a different flour or something I can add to make the dough more white so the colors are more pleasant.
So, on Saturday, Max’s cousins were in town. All the kids headed out back into Nana and Pappy’s yard to rake leaves. Once there was a nice sized pile of leaves, this happened…
Even though I edited the video down to 14 seconds, the fun with the leaves went on for over 2 hours. I even took a turn at jumping in the leaves. Thankfully, there is no video of this. As much fun as Max had jumping into the leaves, he also had some fun when Pappy let him use the leaf blower…
Max was playing on the floor with some cars and trucks, and he called me over and said he smelled something nasty. I smelled it too, so I started sniffing around. Nothing jumped out at me, so I figured it was gone. But then I got another whiff of it. We were out at the park earlier in the day, so I thought maybe Max had stepped into something or sat in something. So I started sniffing his shirt and pants. Again nothing. I sniffed the pillows on the couch, nothing. He continued playing and he announced that “We have a mystery”. He played for a few more minutes, then he said “Daddy, I solved the mystery, it’s my feet!”. Sure enough, I sniffed his socks and that was the source of the nasty smell. He wore new Sketchers sneakers and had them on all morning and afternoon. So I’m sure that contributed. So when Rachel gave him a shower last night, she used regular Irish Spring on his feet. That Johnson and Johnson wash just wasn’t cutting it on his feet anymore. Case of the stinky feet has been solved!