Instead of doing one of my typical, long-winded monthly posts, I decided to share Alex's 2-year interview from his journal that B got him on his first Valentine's Day. The interview starts with some questions for Alex's parents, i.e. Yours Truly, then moves into an interview with Alex himself.
Major milestones and important accomplishments this year: you learned to walk and climb and run and jump, you learned to talk and to sing and dance, you know your letters and numbers and shapes and body parts (even the obscure ones, like your forehead and elbows), you started school, you have lots of friends, you are sleeping in a big boy bed, you learned to feed yourself with a fork or spoon and get more food in your mouth than on your shirt...
Funny moments: you demonstrating your vibrato singing skills when singing the alphabet. your silly faces. when you spin in circles, then stop and let your eyeballs roll around in your head. when you laugh really hard because we are laughing, even though you don't know what is funny. the way that you swing your hips like a belly dancer when we ask you to dance for us...
I'm most proud of you for: being friendly and outgoing. I love that whenever I take you out in public, you smile and talk to everyone and make other people feel good just by being near you.
My predictions for your future: you will keep us on our toes. One minute you will torture me with your whining and your tantrums, and the next minute, you will be charming me with your...charm. I will spend sleepless nights trying to decide how to handle your attitude and your temper tantrums, then in the morning, you'll greet me with a "hi Mommy!!" and I'll forget that you ever had an attitude to be dealt with.
Characteristic I most love about you: how do I choose just one? I can't. So I will just list a bunch instead.
I love that, if you get hungry at any point during the day, you will climb into your high chair and say, "eat!"
I love that you often refer to both your dad and I as "Mommy-Daddy", so that you don't have to think about which one you are talking to and use the appropriate name. Some might call it lazy. I call it efficient.
I love that, when I pick you up from school, you immediately stop what you are doing, scream "Mommmmyyyyyy!!!", and run to me as if we've been apart for months.
I love the way you no longer answer questions with a simple yes or no. Now, if I ask you to do something, you always say, "sure, Mom". Or if I do something you don't like, you say, "no, Mom", and not just in a casual way, but in an annoyed way that is often accompanied by an eye roll that implies, "(*Sigh*) Seriously woman? Must you be so difficult?"
I love how you shout, "woohooo!" whenever you do something you are proud of.
I love how, when you concentrate on something, your mouth hangs open and your tongue bulges out like a slack-jawed yokel. But a cute one.
I love that, when you see something you have painted or drawn hanging on the wall, you GASP dramatically, point at it, and scream, "aaaaaart!"
I love how, when I open the door to your room in the morning, you always greet me with a cheerful, "Hi, Mommy!"
I love when you are sitting by yourself, and you start to sing out loud to the songs in your head.
I love when I lie down in your bed to chat with you at night, and you reach up and close my eyelids so I will fall asleep with you.
I love how you say, "cheese!" when I point the camera at you, but you don't bother to look up from what you are doing or smile at me when you do it.
I love how you wrinkle your nose and say, "P.U.!!" whenever you see something gross.
My biggest worry this year was: that I would not have the patience to deal with the Terrible Twos, which started months ago. You've only officially been two for a few days, and I already find myself pulling my hair out when you throw your tantrums. Patience is not something I have an excess of.
Other thoughts: I need to keep things in perspective when it comes to your behavior. Even if you throw half a dozen hissyfits in the course of a day, each fit lasting five minutes, that's a mere 30 minutes out of the day that you are being a beast. That leaves ten waking hours a day that you are my buddy, my sweet, darling boy who makes me smile and laugh and want to grab you and squeeze your guts out...in a good way. I'd say that's a pretty reasonable beast-to-buddy ratio.
The next portion of the interview is questions that we asked Alex. Then he dictated as I typed I his answers. Which I have transcribed for you here. Word for word.
Q. What is your favorite color:
A. I used to refer to all colors as "blue", and now I think everything is "purple". I can recognize and recite the alphabet, count to twelve, sing songs, compose arias, and find the derivatives of various trig functions, but I can't tell the difference between yellow and blue. My mom is afraid I am colorblind. Everyone else thinks I am just stubborn.
Q. Who is your best friend?
A. My mom. She feeds me and plays with me and lets me watch train movies even though she hates my train movies. My dad's cool, too, but time-invested has pushed mom into the "best" spot. It's only fair.
Q. What is your favorite food?
A. I generally have a flavor of the week. I will love something one week, and then not want to touch it the next, so my "favorites" are usually short-lived. Some of my recent favorites are yogurt, blueberries, peanuts (which, apparently, kids aren't supposed to have), hot dogs, pizza, and Sun Chips. But I will try anything once. Even brussel sprouts. Tried them once. Didn't like 'em.
Q. What is your favorite dessert?
A. Ice cream. But I don't really get the whole "melting" thing, so I tend carry my ice cream around like a trophy until it has melted down my arm and onto my clothes. Then I try to eat it and am annoyed that it is dripping on me. And it really annoys my mom, too, so I don't get ice cream very often.
Q. What is your favorite thing to do?
A. That's a three-way tie between watching train movies, playing at the park/mall playground/zoo playground, and playing with the train set at Barnes & Noble.
Q. What do you want to do when you grow up?
A. Be a train. And if I can't be a train, I'd like to be a train conductor. And if I can't be a train conductor, I'd like for someone to pay me to watch train movies all day.
Q. What is you favorite TV show?
A. Sesame Street. Thomas the Tank Engine is on during my naptime, otherwise that would be my answer. Except that my mom hates that show and probably wouldn't let me watch it anyway.
Q. Where is your favorite place to go?
A. The zoo, the park, or the children's section at Barnes & Noble. Where the trains are.
Q. What makes you happy?
A. Anything related to trains or ice cream. I also get very excited when my dad gets home from work.
Q. What makes you sad?
A. Not much. I get mad when I don't get what I want, like when my mom tells me I cannot, under any circumstance, watch my coo-coo movie again.
Q. What are you afraid of?
A. I used to hate the vacuum cleaner, but now I stand in the corner of the room and try to be brave while mom cleans the floors. Lucky for me, that doesn't happen very often. I'm very cautious around the water, too, and I hate to walk around in the kiddie pool by myself, even when my mom is within arms' reach. My mom says that going by myself in the pool is a good thing to be afraid of, even though it kind of annoys her, too.
Q. What are you most proud of?
A. All of the things I know. I can pretty much name anything that my mom points at, and I really like to show off by singing my alphabet and counting things for people.
Q. If you could wish on a star right now, what would you wish for?
A. A bowl of ice cream and a train movie.
Q. What is your favorite thing about school?
A. Everything! Doing art projects, learning new songs, playing with my friends, and playing in the ball room. Oh wait, I've recently decided that I don't like napping at school. But I love everything else!
Q. What is your favorite thing about birthdays?
A. Cake, ice cream, and presents!
Q. Would you rather be really famous or really smart?
A. I love attention and interacting with people, so I'd have to say I'd rather be famous. Although it would be nice if I were famous for being smart...
Q. Would you rather be the age you are now or 25 years old?
A. Um, is this a trick question? Hmm, let's see...I live with my folks, rent-free; my mom feeds me three squares and two snacks a day, and if I don't like what she's made, I whine until until she gives me something else; I never have to clean the toilet seat...or wipe my own hiney, for that matter; people force me to take a nap in the middle of the day, just so that I have enough energy to get up and play with my toys; people think that everything I do is awesome; I don't have to wash my own clothes or pick out my own clothes or dress myself...Yeah, I think I'd like to stay two forever.
Q. Would you rather know how to talk to animals or how to fly?
A. I already talk to animals, so I would love to learn how to fly. I love to be thrown in the air or pushed high in a swing so that my stomach drops when I come back down. Come to think of it, it's the falling that I like more than the flying. And I already know how to fall.
Q. Would you rather go on a trip to outer space or to the bottom of the sea?
A. Considering my whole "afraid of water" thing and my whole "wanting to fly" thing, I'd have to say that I'd rather board a space ship than a submarine.
Q. Would you rather have ten sisters or ten brothers?
A. Ten sisters. Sisters would play with girly stuff like dolls and makeup and they would leave my trains and tools alone.