After writing about Max needing more time with kids around his own age, seems as if we may have found just that. There is a little boy who lives 2 doors down from us. Recently while playing outside, him and Max spotted one another and said hi. The next night, we were out riding bikes, and Max said hi to him again. And then we were out front digging for worms, and the little boy yelled from his house “Hey Max, what are you doing?”. Him and Max talked back and forth for a bit. Seemed like Max had an interest in what he was doing and he was curious about what Max was doing.
On Friday night, Rachel was stuck in horrific northern VA traffic. So I picked Max up and we played outside for a while, waiting for Mommy to get home. While we were outside, Max asked if he could play basketball. So I got his hoop out of the garage and set it up in the driveway. We noticed the little boy outside again. He asked what we were doing. I took the initiative and asked him if he wanted to try to shoot the basketball. He got wide eyed, looked at his grandmother and she gave an approving nod. So he came over. We have two basketballs, so I got one for him and Max continued with his own. They played nicely together and took turns shooting.
After a few minutes, the boy lost interest in basketball, and his attention tuend to some of Max’s toys in the garage . He worked his way up the driveway and into the garage. He picked out a few toys that peaked his interest, and asked Max what they were. One thing that really interested him was this little rocket Max has. You put these sort of paper caps in the nose of the rocket before you launch it. It goes up in the air and when it comes down, it comes down nose first and pops the cap when it hits the ground. The boy thought it was great. Not sure if his grandmother thought he was imposing (which he wasn’t), but after about 10 minutes she called him to come back over to their house.
Max then decided he wanted to make some water balloons. We we put all the basketball stuff away and got the water balloons out. I filled a couple up and Max ran down the driveway to throw then in the street. The boy from a few houses away noticed Max and asked what he was doing. Max answered him and I asked him if he wanted to try. He nodded so I picked up a water balloon and walked it over to him. He wasn’t sure what to do with it, and ended up squeezing it and popping it. He stood there shocked for a second, and I thought he was going to cry. But then he looked up and said “Can I have another one”. As I walked over to the hose to fill one up for him, I asked Max to show him how to throw the balloon. Before long he got the hang of it and the two of them were running up and down the driveway to retrieve more balloons. They were throwing them so fast, I had trouble keeping up with the demand.
Again after about 10 minutes, the grandmother called the boy home and said it was time to go for a walk. They disappeared into the house for a while, and I never saw them actually go for a walk. Not sure if she felt like they were imposing or what. I really didn’t feel like they were and I enjoyed the time he was spending with Max. Hope I didn’t seem put off or seemed like he was a bother.
Rachel came home and we went in to have dinner. After dinner, we went back outside and the little boy was outside again. He walked down to our house and found the rocket that he liked and asked me if he could play with it. Him and Max played for a while, and then after a few minutes his grandmother called down and said it was time to go. They were going out for dinner. After a few minutes, the little boy never did make his way back home, so his grandmother walked up. Rachel and her talked for a bit. I looked after the two kids as they played. Grandmother kept saying it was time to go, but the little boy was having fun and didn’t want to leave. Eventually the sun had set and daylight was fading, so we told Max it was time to go in. I still find it a bit odd that the grandmother is always calling him back home whenever he starts to play with Max. Not sure if she is be
Turns out the boys name is Ziggy. The dynamic at his house is rather unique. His mom is a single mom, I estimate her age to be in her early 20’s. She works, so he spends a lot of time with his grandmother. When we see him, he’s usually outside with her. Seems like the dad is not around much . The grandmother explained to Rachel that she thought Max was much older because he’s much taller than Ziggy. Turns out Max is only about a year older.
The next day, as soon as he woke up Max asked if he could go outside and play with Ziggy. We went outside and he was nowhere to be seen. Max and I played outside for about an hour and then Max spotted Ziggy with his mom. Max asked if they could make more water balloons. So I said sure and got them out. Max invited Ziggy over and they spent a good hour playing together. They seem to get along really well, and I hope that they continue to play together over the summer. They rode scooters together, collected bugs, played basketball, threw water balloons and scribbled with sidewalk chalk. They seem like they love each others company.
Ziggy still takes an afternoon nap, so his Mom called him home for his nap. Max was sad to see him go. His Mom and grandmother said he would come back out after his nap. So it seemed like every five minutes Max was asking “do you think Ziggy is awake yet”. Unfortunately Ziggy got in trouble with him grandmother, and was punished the rest of the evening, so he never got to come back outside. Max was crushed. Hoping if the rain lets up, they’ll be able to play together again tonight.