divide and conquer
If you have kids and you’re like me and Tom, you spend your weekends being slaves to the concept of “family time.” The thing about family time is that consecutive days of it can create the opposite of the intended effect. If you’ve never wanted to run away from home at 4:00 pm on a Sunday, you’re a better parent than me.
This last weekend, Tom packed Finn up for a trip to Ann Arbor, nominally to watch the Michigan-Northwestern game and to visit Finn’s beloved Grandma and other family, including his amazing Aunt Susan and Uncle Matt, and cousins Ramal and Amya. I say nominally, because as evidenced by these photos, the trip obviously ended up being some heady mixture of epic grandma spoiling + early recruiting for U of M. I am told that Finn wore this helmet all of Sunday while tooling around town, except when he took it off to eat.
Back home, Tate and I were doing our own thing. To quote my friend Suzanne, I’m one hell of a mom when I only have one kid around. I’m more patient, kinder, more loving. And here’s what I learned about my three-year old. He says really funny things, which I usually don’t notice when Finn’s here, because I’m too busy breaking them up in the middle of a ninja fight. And he’s getting so tall, which I never noticed because his older brother is usually physically casting a shadow over him. His shoes were too small. So we went and got new ones. I learned that he can identify the Eiffel Tower and Adele’s voice on the radio. When we made french toast, I noticed how carefully he mixed the eggs with his whisk, so they wouldn’t spill. My little dude.
I’m sure Tom learned new things about Finn in their time away together. And while I miss Tom and Finn a lot, it all makes me think that there might be something to the concept of splitting the kids up once in a while, instead of driving ourselves batty from too much forced togetherness. A little time to enjoy each kid without the mitigating influence of a sibling. A little time to dally.