May 17th was Ethan’s 7th birthday. To celebrate, we invited the boys from his class to join us at the YMCA for some cake, games, and swimming. Unfortunately, Ethan has only 5 boys in his class, including himself. Even more unfortunate, one of the boys didn’t show up, so there were only 4 boys there. Actually, that ended up being lucky for us as boys are crazy! The spent the bulk of their time wrestling and smashing into one another.
We did manage to get them all into the pool in one piece. Our Y has a very nice family pool that is separate from the competitive “lap” pool. It has a small lazy river, therapeutic area, a play area with fun water toys, and a big water slide. Ethan’s always been afraid of the water slides, which is too bad since we go to the Dells at least twice a year in hopes that he’ll start going down them. Each time we’ve gone, we’ve been disappointed. We tried everything. We picked out any 3 year old girl that was going on the slides and point them out, we’d question his manhood, but nothing would work. He was very stubborn. Finally we thought we had found something that would work to get him to go on waterslides, movies. He loves movies, particularly Spiderman and Star Wars. We have not let him watch the Star Wars III and Spiderman 3 because they were PG-13 and that made him mad! His friends got to watch them, he would tell us, to which we would retort, “your friends probably aren’t afraid to go down waterslides.” Yes, nominate us for parents of the year right now… So we told him that if he would go down a waterslide, we would let him watch one of those movies. Well, he finally went down the waterslide at the Y, not because he wanted to watch a movie, but because all of his friends did it and he felt like he should as well. He did not hesitate to tell me immediately, though, that he intended on watching Star Wars Episode III that very evening.
Ethan has been a fan of Star Wars for quite some time. He has recently renewed his love for the movies when he discovered Lego Star Wars, the Wii video game, a couple of weeks ago. Since then we have watched all 5 episodes (besides Episode III) several times. Watching the movies with Ethan means enduring a constant barrage of questions and comments about the movies. As late as three weeks ago, he still referred to the “Force” as the “Forest.” It was all I could do to answer him with a straight face when he would ask me, “Dad, do you believe in the Forest?” He finally conceded that it was the “Force” after some heated arguments and re-viewings of the movies. All that time, though, we insisted that Episode III was too dark and scary for him to watch. The fact that it was rated PG-13 helped us to convince him that he couldn’t watch it. After surprising us by going down the waterslide, though, we had no choice but to let him watch.
After the party, we quickly went to church (fun birthday, eh?), went out to eat at one of his favorite restaurants, Burger King, then rushed home, got into our pajamas, popped some popcorn, and settled down to watch Episode III. It had been awhile since Jenny and I had watched the movie as well, so we were excited to watch the movie as well.
My impressions of watching the movie with Ethan are mixed. On one hand, I thought he had an incredible amount of insight in the movie. He understood many things that I never would have thought he would understand. For example, he figured out early that the Chancellor was only pretending to be kidnapped. On the other hand, he never shut up for the entire movie! Over the last few weeks, since the Star Wars craze started up again, he had been barraging me with questions about Episode III. I told him what I remembered and never left anything out. From that, he was able to predict a good portion of the movie. It was pretty annoying, though, because he would constantly be saying, “Is this the part where such and such?” I’m sure there was not an entire minute during the movie where he didn’t say something. One thing that he said that I found hilarious was during a scene where Anikan and Padme were talking about what they were going to do with the baby that they had accidentally created together. Padme said something like, “Do you think Obi-Wan could help?” Ethan started snickering to himself, so I had to ask him why. He said, “I’m thinking how funny it would be if Obi-Wan helped with the baby. Like if the baby got stuck coming out, he could use his light-saber…” Perhaps the PG-13 rating should have scared me away.
In the end, I’m glad I let him watch the movie. He actually is very good at following these movies, perhaps even better than some adults (myself included). He has a very good attention to detail and is not afraid to ask questions about anything that comes to mind. The bad part, of course, is that he asks it when it comes to his mind, regardless of whether it is during the movie. One of his favorite questions is, “who is your favorite character” and all variations around it. An example of his variations on this question is “who is your favorite bad guy in the second episode?” Ultimately, he wants me to say either Boba or Jango Fett, his two favorite characters in all the episodes…
Quick Quin Update
I feel bad that I’ve not written much on Quin lately. It seems that the second child syndrome has set in. Reading back on the blog entries on Ethan, I wrote at length on gripping topics as the consistency of his bowel movements to the exact pitch and tone of his coughs. With Quin, however, we have been through that, and we choose not to worry ourselves about it so much. There, another reason to get that nomination in for parents of the year!
Quin is progressing as one would expect a three month old to progress, I think. He has become quite interactive. He rewards us often with smiles and laughs. He is also starting to discover that he can grab things with his hands and explore them. Right now he is very hesitant and cautious about grabbing things, and is still trying to get the hang of controlling his limbs to such a fine degree.
He’s still eating about 5 ounces at a time every 4 hours or so. He has started sleeping a bit more at night, but it’s not very predictable. He has gone 9 hours before eating at night in the past week, but that 9 hours went from 6PM to 3AM. Eventually we’ll figure out how to get him on somewhat of a schedule. It is more common for him to go 6 hours between eating at night, and he still goes to sleep almost instantly after eating when in the middle of the night.
Oh, he talks a lot! I’m not sure if I’m ready for another kid that talks as much as Ethan! The funny thing is that I really believe he thinks that he is talking. He will look you in the eye, smile, then babble at you for minutes on end. He repeats sounds sometimes as well! I’m wondering if those repeated sounds actually mean something? Do babies come out with some sort of default language that they all speak and we just don’t understand it? I always thought all babies came out speaking a Chinese dialect since they had about a 1 in 4 chance of being born in China, but now I’m not so sure. The things Quin is saying don’t sound Chinese to me…
At any rate, Quin’s doing well. I’ll update more as more exciting things occur to him, like getting teeth, rolling over, eating his first solid food, you know, the really exciting stuff!!!