Kid Math

Damon just called from Kentucky to hear how Elliot and I are getting along. I could hear Alden goofing off in the background.

I told him that Elli and I slept in until 9. Then we had breakfast with a chocolate chaser, played with the rocking horse, stacked some blocks. After a few hours we had a little nurse and now he’s having a champion nap.

This weekend is making me realize that it’s a ton more work to wrangle two kids. Genius, right? But here’s the surprise: It’s a ton more work even with two adults. Single parenting Elliot is so much easier than tag-team parenting both of them. Even with two pretty-good-natured boys. It’s still a constant chorus of jealousy (Pick ME up!) and competition (Look at ME!) and squabbling (I want ALL the cars!). Alden is the only one who talks, but they’re both clearly sending the message.

So what’s the solution? Do we split them up in the evening? One upstairs with mom and one downstairs with dad? Doesn’t that kind of defeat the idea of, you know, the family?

I will say that we do all enjoy our near-nightly dinner. I think that has a lot to do with both boys being strapped in their seats.

I’m confident this will get easier as they get older. I think the key will turn in the lock when Elliot is a little more amenable to conversation. Right now Alden will try to reason with Elliot for a moment, “Elliot, please don’t mess up my tower.” (poor Alden) before giving up and bashing him in the face with a block (poor Elliot). And they both fight bedtime like rabid pumas (poor Mommy and Daddy).

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8 responses to this post.

  1. They’re in collusion against you, pure and simple.

    Reply

  2. They’re in collusion against you, pure and simple.

    Reply

  3. Mine have been squabbling all morning. ๐Ÿ™‚
    That said, they’re very protective of each other, and even in the midst of the “look at ME” stuff, they want me to notice the other one. They don’t like it when the other one gets in trouble. I do regularly remind them that this is the best friend they’ll ever have, and they know that. Most of the time they play together well. We have the usual beefs over toys, and about ten minutes ago there was a fight over who is the owner of the green socks with the blue whale on them. Often I jump in and say, “Who cares? Does this really matter?” Most of the time, they go off to play after that. We try to make sure each one gets special time. Ezra is pretty dependent on Anya, and wants her there when he sleeps, especially. Anya is a bit proprietary of Ez, since from the time he was born we made sure she felt some ownership of him to prevent jealousy. She was never really jealous as a little kid because she thought he was her personal toy.
    So, while the squabbling continues, yes, it does get better.

    Reply

  4. Mine have been squabbling all morning. ๐Ÿ™‚
    That said, they’re very protective of each other, and even in the midst of the “look at ME” stuff, they want me to notice the other one. They don’t like it when the other one gets in trouble. I do regularly remind them that this is the best friend they’ll ever have, and they know that. Most of the time they play together well. We have the usual beefs over toys, and about ten minutes ago there was a fight over who is the owner of the green socks with the blue whale on them. Often I jump in and say, “Who cares? Does this really matter?” Most of the time, they go off to play after that. We try to make sure each one gets special time. Ezra is pretty dependent on Anya, and wants her there when he sleeps, especially. Anya is a bit proprietary of Ez, since from the time he was born we made sure she felt some ownership of him to prevent jealousy. She was never really jealous as a little kid because she thought he was her personal toy.
    So, while the squabbling continues, yes, it does get better.

    Reply

    • Ooh – I like that “Does this really matter?” idea and will have to steal it from you. Usually by the time mine are squabbling they no longer care about whatever got them started, but they have no good way to back down.

      Reply

      • My friend Steve has a great trick with his two boys. They’re very close at 6 and 8, but when they do fight he just comes in and give them both a hard time. He calls it the “common enemy” approach and he said it always works. Totally going to try that when Elliot is a little older.

  5. Ooh – I like that “Does this really matter?” idea and will have to steal it from you. Usually by the time mine are squabbling they no longer care about whatever got them started, but they have no good way to back down.

    Reply

  6. My friend Steve has a great trick with his two boys. They’re very close at 6 and 8, but when they do fight he just comes in and give them both a hard time. He calls it the “common enemy” approach and he said it always works. Totally going to try that when Elliot is a little older.

    Reply

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