The Most Important Meal of the Day

June 20, 2008

Mealtimes around here have started getting tough.  It started getting bad when BabyN needed food too.  It’s particularly bad when I’m alone to deal with it, like at breakfast.  This morning was a good example of how things go around here at meals.

BabyN decided to try something new while I was feeding him.  Instead of sitting there happily and quietly, anxiously awaiting each bite, he let himself get distracted by everything.  He would rock back and forth as I was trying to aim a spoonful of food at his mouth, which is how he ended up with food everywhere from his ear to his eye to his nose.  Then he decided that the spoon looked like a great toy.  He kept trying to grab it–while still rocking back and forth.  So now I’m avoiding his waving hands and trying to time it right to get the food in his mouth and not his hair.

Naturally he grabbed the spoon several times anyway, getting food all over his hands and arms and dripping some in his lap.  I got frustrated, of course.  Thank goodness I kept my cool head and remembered something we used to have to do for PJ when he hit this stage.  I gave BabyN a different spoon to play with to keep his hands occupied.  That’s the only way I made it through feeding him without having a breakdown.

Of course, while all this drama is happening, PJ is on the other side of the table eating his cereal.  It was the first time I’d tried pouring milk in it and letting him use a spoon to eat it.  He was having a blast and eating very well, so I was grateful I didn’t have to give him as much of my attention as usual.

Until he finished the cereal.  He saw the little bit of milk that was left and thought it looked like a great toy.  At that age, the messier its potential, the better toy it is.  I warned him several times not to shake the bowl, even if he was doing so gently, and he proceeded to repeat, “PJ, don’t shake it” while gently shaking it.

I would have immediately taken it away from him if I hadn’t been covered in baby food at the time, trying to clean up both BabyN and me.  I was seriously debating just throwing BabyN in the bathtub about then but didn’t want him to spread the mess before I had PJ under control and could start a bath.

So I kept scrubbing at his face and hands (and legs and high chair and hair, etc).  Then suddenly I glance over to PJ who seems giddy.  The change in mood happened quickly, so I suspected something was up.  Sure enough, there was Apple-Jacks-pink-colored milk in a pool on the table, dripping onto the floor and into his booster chair.  All over his white onesie.

Of course.

So as soon as I finished cleaning BabyN, I got to start on PJ.  Now we’re all three just a bit sticky from spilled milk and fruity baby food.  I would give us all a bath, but I need a bit of a break first.  I can’t handle the drenching I know I’ll receive from a double bath about now.

It seems that the hospital was negligent in their duties when they discharged me from the hospital with both boys; I managed to make it home without that extra set of eyes in the back of my head or the extra pair of arms.  I could have used all of them this morning.

Thank goodness tomorrow starts the weekend.  At the very least I will have help with tomorrow’s meals, and most likely M will get this fun alone for breakfast, as he usually lets me sleep late while he watches the boys on Saturdays.  Do you think I should warn him about what he can expect or just let him enjoy this fun the same way I did?

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