Saturday, November 8, 2008

What are Little Boys Made Of....

What are little boys made of?
Snips and snails, and puppy-dogs' tails,
That's what little boys are made of.
What are little girls made of?
Sugar and spice, and everything nice,
That's what little girls are made of.
~Robert Southey

I've come to realize over the last couple of months that boys are very different than girls.

Well, duh. And you think I would know that being the only girl with three brothers growing up, but I guess, I forgot. And I hadn't seen this from a mother's perspective before.

Joseph Patrick, my wonderful son who I named after the father of our Lord and the saint who drove the snakes out of Ireland, some days has horns growing out of his halo. He is angelic in appearance with blond hair, and big, innocent looking blue eyes. He smiles and is sooo cute. Then he pulls his sister's hair.

There are some things that Shelby did not do, that her brother is teaching us all about. First there is the hitting. Joey can't give a kiss without following up by hitting you in the face. I'm not kidding. Last weekend, at my parents' home, my mother came over to me holding Joey and exclaimed happily, "He gave me a kiss!"

"Did he hit you in the face right after?" I asked.

"Yeah, pretty much." This woman gave birth to three boys. Some days I wonder how she has any semblance of sanity.

Shelby did bite for a very short period of time (and this was restricted to me, with the exception of my mother one time). Joseph has been biting for 3 months. Everyone. Luckily, at daycare, they have been able to stop him before another child was the victim.

And here we come to something that Shelby could not have done if she wanted. On my birthday, while he was supposed to be napping, I heard a squeal of delight come from Joseph's room. This, I knew, could not be good. Previous squeals of this sort revealed a dog having his ears pulled or a newspaper being shredded and eaten. He was in his crib though, what could he be doing? I opened the door. He had removed his diaper and was standing up peeing through the slats on the crib onto the floor. On, the upside, a friend with two boys said, he might potty train more easily since he has the standing thing down. On the downside, he knows how to take his diaper off and peed on my floor! He was ever so proud of himself and continued to squeal even when I told him, "It's not very nice to make Mommy clean up pee-pee on her birthday!"

My brother Michael (Joseph's uncle and Godfather) informed me that, of course Joey had to be delighted. Being able to stand up and pee was the greatest thing since sliced bread. I didn't know what I had been missing.

Now for those who think I must capitalize on this development...we have encountered another problem. The potty we were given for Shelby to start training is being used by Joseph, to put in whatever he wants to discard. His socks, an empty sippy cup, a toy he is done with, have all be retrieved.

Now, I did learn something important from that...our bathroom door remains closed. If there is one thing I know about children in general and boys in particular is that if you hear a toilet flush and then hear "uh-oh" it's already too late.

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