We have had an absolutely wonderful summer. Lots of extremely warm days spent playing, swimming, and just generally having a blast. This summer J had his first tubing experience and learned to swim to the bottom of the pool on his own to retrieve dive toys from the bottom of the pool.
J has really exploded in trying new foods. Veggies are still a challenge, but I will never argue with a child who chooses strawberries, apple slices, grapes and blueberries over potatoes. I know my snacking on cauliflower, sugar snap peas and peppers will eventually intrigue him to share in the delights of healthy eating. In the mean time, I'm celebrating his willingness to explore new main courses. He has found he loves bacon and steak.
J's willingness to eat new foods definitely made last week easier on the grandparents. Grandma M supplied an assortment of food, but the highlight (per J) was her homemade Italian meatballs. Grandma P stuck closer to mom tested tacos, bacon sandwiches, and steak. We did learn, J just loves the *yellow* box of Cheerios. Such a simple delight that provided grandma with the perfect "this is your one item" choice during a grocery shop.
I've learned that J needs to understand clear boundaries and expectations prior to entering events. He is a creature of routine and habit, and varying from that is hard for him. Since I find comfort in routine, I totally understand, and make sure I am clear with expectations prior to uncontrollable situations. Other kids getting to run around the grocery store, while J is made to either sit in the cart or stay very close to me is hard for him to comprehend and understand. But saying - if you sit in the cart until there is no room for you, then you walk nicely beside me will earn you a quarter for the gum machine on the way out - works beautifully for keeping him well behaved. Even in the check out line, where this week, had been a tad sassy (doing away with naps is killing us both) during our shop, so he asked if he could earn his quarter back by picking up the check out lane items that are so tempting for little hands. A box of suckers had been knocked over, Matchbox cars tossed aside, etc. I was so proud of him as he asked for help matching up each item with its proper location and putting them away. The smile showing me how proud he was of himself was that much more powerful.
Jacob has grown and changed so much in the past year, I could not be more proud of him if I tried. He is curious and eager to learn. Hours could fly by with the iPad working on words or simple math. Then days later, J will show me through normal everyday life how those lessons are sinking in as he applies them to a situation.
Tomorrow he starts Junior Kindergarten. With it comes the promise of more learning, renewed friendships, new friendships, and the continued enhancement of his learning. It seems like just yesterday he was sucking his thumb during one of my weekly biophysical profiles. Or how at 4 months he found his thumb. Or his first steps during our visit to Marco in Dec 2008. Or his racing to the front door on a full run to let everyone in for his 1st birthday. Or his move to prefer real food over baby food. Or his first paper sent home just have he turned 2 and Miss Angie had him in preschool. Or how his language grew leaps and bounds in the first 3 months after he turned 2. Celebrating birthdays. Learning to swim on his own. Getting his passport stamped. His first day of Young Scholars. His last day.
and here we are... Summer over and life begins anew with the passing of another season. Hello Fall! We welcome you with an open heart and a joy of what is to come.