Tag Archives: The Nibbit

Mr. Nobody

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Something amazing happened in our house this week. Well, it’s sort of a good news/bad news type thing. The good news is that The Nibbit hasn’t done ANYTHING mischievous, naughty, suspicious or downright wrong for the past week or so. In fact, he’s been the perfect little boy – totally well-behaved for days and days on end. Crazy, right?

What’s even stranger is that right around the time that this angel took over my son’s body, a new tenant took residence in our house. His name? Mr. Nobody.

Now, I haven’t actually seen Mr. Nobody. He is apparently very quick on his feet and sneaky. In fact, I would say he is one wily son of a biotch.  And he is responsible for a lot of s**t that’s gone down in our house lately.

For instance…

Me: “Who took all of the folded laundry out of this basket and used it to decorate your floor?”
The Nibbit: “Um… Mr. Nobody did that.”

Me: “Why are you slamming the door over and over and over again?”
The Nibbit: “I didn’t slam that door over and over and over again. MR. NOBODY slammed that door over and over and over again. I was just sitting here.”

Me: “Who spilled all of this jui… wait, let me guess… Mr. Nobody did it?”
The Nibbit: “Um…….… yup.”

I asked the Nibbit why Mr. Nobody did all of these things and his response was,  “Because he is a rotten Mr. Nobody.” Huh. That explains it.

Yup, this guy looks like trouble alright.

The whole imaginary friend (well, Mr. Nobody is more of a frenemy if you ask me) is new to me. The Loud One gives her stuffed puppies voices and personalities, but for the most part she just talks to herself. (Out loud. At high volume. ALL THE TIME.)

So, for kicks, I Googled “imaginary friends” and that led me to this Wikipedia page which leads with this introduction:

Imaginary friends and imaginary companions are a psychological and social phenomenon where a friendship or other interpersonal relationship takes place in the imagination rather than external physical reality. Imaginary friends are fictional characters created for improvisational role-playing. They often have elaborate personalities and behaviors. They may seem real to their creators, though they are ultimately unreal, as shown by studies. (Taylor, M. (1999) Imaginary Companions and the Children Who Create Them. New York: Oxford University Press)

I have a couple of thoughts on this.

One, if the relationship is taking place in the imagination rather than the external physical reality, then why is my nice, clean, formerly-folded laundry all now spread out all over the floor?

And two, can we just talk about that last sentence for a second? I’m sorry, is it me or did Wiki just tell me that someone, somewhere had to conduct a study to show that imaginary friends are “ultimately unreal?”

Um…………………

First of all, they’re called IMAGINARY friends. Second of all, there is no second of all. They are called IMAGINARY friends.

Even the previous sentence specifically says, “Imaginary friends are fictional characters… blah blah blah.” Yes, because that is what imaginary MEANS.

So of course I’m wondering, how would one even conduct a study to prove that imaginary friends are… wait for it… ultimately unreal?

Of course, I immediately went to Amazon.com and bought the book referenced in the footnote. Now, I’m not sure if Marjorie Taylor, the author of Imaginary Companions and the Children Who Create Them is the one who conducted the study or if she merely references said study in her book. Regardless, I am eager to see what the book says about this study. And yes, of course I will keep you posted. About you know, whether or not the study to determine if imaginary friends are ultimately unreal is ultimately real… or not.

Regardless, I’m hoping that Ms. Taylor can help me figure out how to stop Mr. Nobody from being such an asshole.

The One in the Middle

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When I was pregnant for the second time, I KNEW I was going to have a girl. (Wrong.) I was 100% positive that it was a girl. (100% wrong.) There was no way I wasn’t having a girl. (Still wrong.) So when the ultrasound technician confirmed for me that I was carrying a – “Wait, I’m sorry, what? It’s a boy? It’s not a sister?” – I cried. Not like “teared up a little bit”… no. Completely, full-on CRIED.

Now before you get all, “OMG, that’s so mean! What if he reads this someday?” let me just go ahead and ruin it by telling you that this story has a happy ending. Spoiler Alert! I END UP LOVING HIM. So it’s all good. I’ll continue.

At that point in time, I didn’t really know what boy babies were all about. The Loud One (love it) was the seventh girl born in three years on my side of the family and the nephews on my husband’s side, while awesome, are older so I didn’t spend a ton of time with them as babies. So boys were sort of foreign to me. In my head, they were all sort of hyper and aggressive and destructive. (And they have penises! How the hell do I deal with THAT?)

Well.

I was right about all those things.

Boys are sort of hyper and aggressive and destructive. (And they do have penises.)

But they are also a million kinds of awesome.

From the minute he was born, he was low-maintenance in every way the Loud One had not been. He slept well. He ate well. He liked his car seat. He liked his crib. And get this… he didn’t need to be in constant motion every second of every day as she had as a baby. He was a very serious baby, but he was also, as they say, easy.

He’s three now and he’s, as they say, not easy. He’s in the Torturous Threes phase. (Has that not caught on yet? What’s taking so long?) He’s… age-appropriate. (At least, I hope he’s age-appropriate and not just a horrible kid. How do you know??) Right now, he’s defiant and frustrating and fresh. But here’s the thing… you just can’t not love this kid. Am I right, readers? (I mean granted you’re all related to him and obligated to say yes, but humor me.) Let me explain…

Reasons Why You Can’t Not Love This Kid:

  • He has the hugest, roundest, bluest eyes that are usually sparkling with mischief, unless they’re filling with giant, bloated, c’mon-those-can’t-be-real-tears because you’ve upset or disappoint him. For instance when you tell him (for the approximately 135th time):
    • “No, you don’t get to ride the school bus with the Loud One today. Not for a few more years.”
    • Or “Yes, you DO have to share one of your 194 Matchbox cars with your brother even though he eats them.”
    • Or “No, you can’t watch just one more ‘Backyardigans’ on the iPad because DYFS will come and take you away from me because you’re only three and [xxxxx amount of time] is enough time for you to have with the iPad.” (You think I’m going to reveal that number in a public forum? No way.)
  • Even though he can’t ride the bus, he still puts on his backpack and comes out to the bus stop almost every day.
  • He CRACKS UP – like serious, deep belly laughs – at the Annoying Orange video on You Tube. (I’m linking to it, but I actually recommend you don’t check it out. It’s horrible and annoying and hysterical all at the same time… so better you just don’t see it. You’re going to watch it now, aren’t you? You’ll regret it.)
  • He loves so many things… trains and trucks and cars; dragons and tigers; riding bikes; playing baseball and soccer; going to school; screens of all types; and board games. He loves Guess Who and The Bug Game and Candyland and Trouble… and he is a whiz at Memory (maybe because he also plays that on the iPad, but whatever.) As far as entertainment goes, this kid is easy to please.

    Mean onions

  • Despite the fact that he’d rather do any of the above, he’s almost always willing to play the Loud One’s imaginative puppy games. Even though he always has to be the Owner and never gets to be a puppy, he still plays. Because he’s just excited to be included in her fun.
  • He likes to help me cook, but insists on wearing sunglasses “because onions make me so sad.”
  • When he gets sent to a Time Out, he gives you a huge lower lip quiver and says, “Hugs first?”

See? The bottom line is, he’s cute and he’s happy and he’s fun and it’s impossible to stay mad at him for very long.

But.

He still needs a Blog Name and this one was easy. When he was about two years old, we coined a word term of endearment in our house that just described him perfectly. He was always getting into stuff and being impish and a slight pain in the ass. I used to say, (100% lovingly, of course) “that kid is nothing but trouble.” Ding ding! Nothing. But. Trouble. NBT.

Friends, I’d like you to meet my middle child, the Nibbit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now don’t you love him, too?

Kids Are Like the Moon… Their Phases Make Us Do Crazy Things

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Most parents have heard by now that consistency and follow-through are essential tools for parenting (also, Benadryl (for them), wine (for us) and M&Ms (everybody wins here). For instance, you can’t allow hair-pulling during Wrestle Baby one day, but then prohibit it the next. Those kinds of mixed messages are confusing to kids. (“Wait, so hair-pulling IS allowed today? And what’s the current ruling on scratching and biting?”)

We know that we should carefully pick our battles and then stick to our guns. In theory.

BUT we’ve all been there when, in the heat of the moment, you pick a battle you regret picking and then make it worse by issuing an ultimatum you reeeeally don’t want to (or can’t possibly) follow-through on.

A few examples:

“I am NOT kidding… if you don’t floss your teeth tonight, we are NOT taking that trip to Disneyland.”

“If you don’t get dressed RIGHT now, you will NOT leave the house all summer.”

“Pick up all 271 of those Legos or you can NOT go to your grandparents’ house for the weekend.”

“Help your sister or I’m throwing your bike away!”

(*Please note that almost none of the above are my real life examples.)

But this next one is. This happened in my house. Last night.

My older son is currently in the phase that I believe they call “The Torturous Threes.” (Wait, no one calls them that? Well they should. Either that or the “Mom Deserves a Medal for Not Killing You Right Now Threes”… but that’s not as catchy.)

So, it was the Bitching Hour and there I was, sort of DONE for the day and the Mini Terrorist and I exchanged this pleasant dialogue:

Me: “D, please pick up the clothes you just threw on the floor.”

Torturous Three-Year Old: “No.”

Me: “I’m going to ask you again to please pick up the clothes. And if you say no, you’ll have a Time Out on the steps.”

TTYO: “I NOT picking up the clothes and I NOT having a time out. You NOT making me do that.”

Me: <not hitting my kid> (Look at me! Not hitting my smart-ass kid! I’ll pause for praise.)

Me: “OK, let’s go, Time Out.”

TTYO: <running away>

Me: <embarrassingly chasing him and physically dragging him to Time Out.>

(Oh no, that’s even not the crazy part.)

While he’s in the Time Out, caffeine-and-sleep-deprived Me says, “First name, Middle name (because that really scares him… NOT AT ALL) after this Time Out, you’re going to pick up those clothes or you will NOT play with the iPad ever again!”

I’m sorry, what the wha??

Why? WHY would I say that? Who cares about the damn clothes on the floor?!? I could have SO easily picked them up myself in two seconds but noooooo, I had to pick this stupid battle and them make a stupid “This Will Hurt Me Waaaaay More Than It Hurts You” threat. If I can’t give this kid the iPad in the morning, then who’s dragging her ass out of bed at 5:30am?!? ME. (Or more likely, Daddy, but that’s completely beside the point.)

Of course once that threat is out there, the only thing left to do is PRAY. (And softly hum the “Backyardigans” theme song to send a subliminal message that life without the iPad would suck.)

So I waited the three minutes while he sat in TO and thought about what he’d done cookies and trucks and then I calmly said, “Are you ready to pick up the clothes?” [pleasesayyespleasesayyespleasesayyespleasesayyes] and he looked at me and said, “OK Mommy.”

YEEEESSSSSSS!!! Crisis averted!! I can still let an electronic screen take care of my child before sunrise! Victory is mine!

Where’s my Mother of the Year plaque?

Best babysitters I've ever had. Thank you Sasha, Uniqua, Austin, Pablo, Moose Guy and most of all, to YOU, Steve Jobs.

PS. Wouldn’t “Kids Are Like the Moon” make a great book title? I could write a whole book on how kids go through horrible phases and there’s really nothing we can do about it. I would totally pick that up and read the back cover … and then probably not buy it because who the hell needs any more parenting books when you already have a shelf of them that you haven’t picked up since your first pregnancy. Nevermind.