July 18th, 2009
Today, while Terah and Oliver napped, Jacob and I went “a sporing” (exploring). We went out and got him in his new “all terrain” Radio Flyer wagon.
We first headed over to “check out the beans” as Jacob likes to put it. We found that yes, they were getting tall. Jacob found a couple of sticks to carry, and wanted to walk himself for a little ways. When we got to some tall grass, back into the wagon he went. We were heading over to our creek.
We went through the tall grass for awhile, and came to the fence. The creek is in a pasture, and there’s a fence with both barbed wire and electric fencing. I crawled under, had Jacob lie down in the wagon, and then pulled the wagon under.
Soon we came to some cow pies. Jacob, of course, wanted to know all about them. I explained that the gray ones were “old cow poop” and the brown ones are “fresh cow poop.” This was tremendously interesting to our toddler. When we got to some shady areas, Jacob almost shrieked, saying, “There old cow poop ALL OVER!”
When we got to the creek, Jacob was excited to see it. He rode along it for awhile, until we got to our old camping spot. I saw some scorched logs over there from the last time we went camping. I said that we built a campfire with them and used it to cook food. Jacob was too young to remember it, I’m sure, but he pointed to one log and said, “That Jacob’s.” Then another log — “That dad’s… and that mom’s… and that one Jacob’s too.” Pretty soon he had assigned each log to a person.
Then we went to the bank of the creek. Jacob wanted to go in, but it was all muddy and didn’t seem like a good idea. I asked him if I should throw in a stick. “Yeah!” So I threw a large stick into the creek, and it splashed. Jacob cackled. “Again?” I did another stick. More cackling. “Again?” I had to go back to a tree to break off dead branches a couple of times because he was having such a good time.
We went past two of my grandpa’s old junk piles while we were exploring back there. Jacob enjoyed seeing the old tractor tire and barbed wire, though he didn’t get to touch the junk. I spotted an old Kansas pickup’s license plate from 1971 in one pile, and pulled it out. Presumably that used to be on grandpa’s old green pickup.
On the way back to the house, I pulled Jacob’s wagon past some bales. As we passed each one, he wanted to stop to touch it. I pulled his wagon up to it, and he got to sit there touching the bale as long as he liked.
Jacob learned about lots of things along the way: he kept asking “what’s that, dad” — and a big part of the challenge was figuring out just what he was talking about. He learned about black-eyed Susans, deer trails, the bumpiness caused by cattle walking around in mud, and various bugs that go “buzz”. I also explained why the grass in the pasture was shorter than the grass elsewhere — he’s been very interested in which animals eat grass lately.
We both had a great time, though I was ready to sit for awhile after pulling a wagon through tall grass for a total of about a mile.
Yesterday I took Terah’s mom to the train station for her 3AM departure — she’d been staying with us ever since Oliver was born to help out. When Jacob woke up, he wanted to “Go downstairs. See Nana!” I explained that Nana wasn’t here anymore. Jacob agreed. “Yeah. She on night train!”
The day Oliver was born, Terah’s mom surprised Jacob by being there when he woke up. We had told him she’d be arriving, though. Apparently he sat up, saw her, and without missing a beat, said, “Hi Nana. You came on NIGHT TRAIN!”
Jacob has been interested in Oliver all week. He wants to make sure Oliver always has toys available. Jacob has also wanted his own pacifier to suck on and play with. We decided to let him, figuring it’s good that he’s curious, and it’ll of course blow over. Jacob has decided that “pacifier” is a silly word. He calls it “my suckifier.”